Not My President

By Priest February 2nd, 2017, under Politics

So, a friend emailed me with this subject header, saying, “So yeah, he’s not. Is he yours?”

Yes, he is.

Seriously.

Doesn’t mean I don’t think he’s crazy, but that’s how democracy works. You’re an American citizen. You don’t get to opt out. You don’t like the president? Do something about it.

Trump is our fault– all of us. We watch way, way, way too much TV and spend way too much time on stupid and wasteful narcissistic pursuits like Facebook rather than studying, reading, praying, and spending time with one another.

As a result, we’re all polarized into our little camps, everybody has their own universe inside their heads and expresses it online instead of just talking to one another.

We are a country that has fallen for the rope-a-dope of mass media marketing, most especially the powerful political tools used to shape public opinion. If we read actual books and actual facts rather than be drones listening to the talking heads on TV, there’d be no Trump.

But we don’t. And Trump is the result. It’s what we deserve.

Ignorance is not a conservative trait or a liberal one. Ignorance is simply ignorance. And ignorance is winning.

The best thing about Trump is that, hopefully, Americans of every political persuasion are now thinking the same thing: “We’ve gone too far. This thing has gotten out of hand.”

And then maybe we’ll start talking to one another again, and “compromise” won’t be a cuss word.

Chicago

By Priest February 2nd, 2017, under Comics

Sorry, been tied up and haven’t had a chance to check in here. Deathstroke #11 was obviously a special one-off issue reuniting the team from STEEL (link) (remember those guys?). It amazes me that so many have commented about these two “industry heavyweights.” Not while we were doing STEEL. Nobody even noticed. Man, I miss that book.

Anyway, here’s a link to Denys and my NPR interview and a piece in The Chicago Tribune.

Big thanks also to Reginald Hudlin for his uncredited plot assist.

Four Rooms

By Priest January 3rd, 2017, under Comics

Deathstroke #9-10 is a change of pace story consisting of four vignettes, titled “Four Rooms,” which introduces the venerable Dr. Arthur Villain to the series who has a yet-to-be-revealed relationship with Slade and ends up bonding, in a sense, with Jericho. Rose travels to Vietnam to learn more about her Hmong heritage from her mother’s family, and, while held in SuperMax (Colorado federal prison), Slade regales his interviewer with a pre-Deathstroke story from his past.

Guest artist Cary Nord really hits this thing out of the park with elegant Russ Heath-meets-David Mazzucheli brushwork as he effortlessly handles the driving heat of Vietnamese hill country or Minneapolis metropolitan snow, military hardware to classic weaponry and everything in between. This is really lovely stuff and a story that sets the stage for dramatic new turns for the Wilson family.

Eight Is Enough

By Priest December 7th, 2016, under Comics

Deathstroke #8 concludes “The Professional,” our first story arc, which was meant to not only re-establish Slade and his ersatz The Sopranos meets Married With Children supporting cast but to also explain, in a credible way, why a guy like Deathstroke continues to walk around the DC Universe. In other words, why isn’t every DCU hero working night and day to capture or kill this man? In my view, until we find a credible answer to that question, we have no book; we’re just kind of winging it and being untrue to either Deathstroke or the DCU heroes or both.

In issue #8 (on sale, I think, next week) we attempt to answer that question or at least get the conversation started. Larry, Carlo, Jason and Jeromy deliver a powerful arc finale pitting our guy against the virtual embodiment of all things DC heroic.

Se7en

By Priest November 22nd, 2016, under Comics

The issue is a major home run, maybe our best so far, which is immodest only if you don’t consider I’m just one of a bunch of people responsible for it.

With #7, I think we’ve finally gotten the recipe right, especially the visual cues of Deathstroke is now a sleek night creature as opposed to the broader all-purpose hulking super-soldier, as well as the dynamic of Slade’s character.

Special shout out to colorist Jeromy Cox who is simply amazing here. I think I actually audibly gasped when I turned the page past the Watchmen/TDKR yak-yak on page one (which was intended to slog the pace and set up the punch-in-the-face 2-page splash). The book just looks way better than a comic book should.

The issue successfully launches post-Rebirth Jericho, which new readers should like while longtime DC fans will either love or hate. We’ll see. The only major flaw in this issue is mine; I forgot to identify Joseph as Jericho (the name “Jericho” never appears), which is a terrible rookie error.

I believe the Superman 2-fer (#7-8) closes out the first collection/trade nicely and caps our evolution of this character and his supporting cast. I hope it is well received. I can easily see all of the effort editor Alex Antone and the Deathstroke team have invested in it.

Somebody *please* send this issue to Affleck.

Thanks and Happy Turkey.