Figment Interview on Newsarama

Newsarama-Figment

Chris Arrant from Newsarama interviewed the creative team all about Disney Kingdoms: Figment, arriving in June. Click on through to find out new details on the mini-series and my take on Dreamfinder and his fantastic dragon pal.

Lunchtime Chatter

I need to get this down before I forget the details…

Eating lunch over at the mall and the young student sitting next to me has a thousand yard stare as she picks at her food, swirling her french fries in ketchup but not even really eating them.

I glance over briefly at the motion and there’s that awkward moment as we both see each other and pause as one of us has to decide if it’s been too long an interaction to leave it without saying something.

I start to look back at my newspaper but she stammers out the start of the conversation.

“Hey… uh, can I ask you something? I mean, if you’re not busy.”

“Okay, I guess. Ask away.”

“You know guys, right? I mean, you’re a guy, so is it okay if I ask you about a guy… about what he’s doing?”

“Tell me what’s going on and I’ll try, sure.”

She thinks about it for a sec.

“There’s this guy. We’re not going out or anything but he calls me up every couple weeks for… I guess like a hook-up or whatever. It’s fun sometimes and other times it’s weird.”

“I bet that would be.”

“So I decided I didn’t want to do that anymore and I told him in December, so he stopped calling.”

“Classy…”

“I know, right! I like him though. He’s nice to me when we’re together and stuff but then just nothing. Nothing.”

“That sounds manipulative, not nice.”

“But here’s the thing. So I saw him on the weekend with other friends of ours and I just said ‘Hi’ and walked on and it would’ve been okay, but then he runs up after me and says ‘Is it okay if I call you? We need to talk about stuff. I want to see you more.’”

“Ugh.”

“It’s brutal. It’s brutal ‘cause I like him and think maybe he’s done some thinking or whatever. So part of me was excited that he was going to call and we could work things out.”

“He didn’t call?”

“He didn’t! And I’m stupid and I texted him and he texted right back and said he’d call and he still didn’t! What’s that?!”

“I think you’ve got your answer right there. If he can’t even communicate then you can’t work with that…”

She eats a few fries and takes a big bite of her hamburger.

“I don’t even eat this stuff normally. I don’t eat burgers. I don’t know… I’m just being impulsive and dumb.”

She glances over and sees my wedding ring.

“Holy shit, you’re married! That’s so cool.”

“Heh. It is actually.”

“How long?”

“Almost four years. It’s great. She’s wonderful and supportive. Nothing’s perfect but we make it all work.”

“Cool… I’m Nadia, by the way.”

“Jim.”

She just shakes her head and sighs as she takes another bite of her burger. I decide to keep the conversation rolling.

“How old are you?”

“Already 21… almost 22 though. You?”

“How old do you think I am?”

She’s looking at me and I can tell she’s embarrassed as she tries to figure it out.

“Oh god, I don’t know… 35?”

“Good guess. 37.”

“Ha! What’s your wife’s name?”

“Stacy.”

“Jim and Stacy…”

“I met Stacy in college but we didn’t get together until later on. We both had to grow up and figure out who we were going to be before we were right for each other.”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah. I don’t know this guy and I don’t know you, but I do know that communication is the least you should expect in a good relationship. It’s the ground floor. If that’s not happening then it’s not a relationship and you’re not going to be happy.”

“Yeah… you’re right. I kind of know that, but it’s good to hear it I guess. It’s hard to figure out people, y’know?”

“Yeah, I do.”

I turn to face her more directly now because I want to make sure this point sticks.

“I know it feels like time is vanishing but you’re young. You’re good. Don’t settle for that.”

“Okay, I won’t.”

“Good.”

She takes a long drag on her soft drink.

“It’s hard to figure out people, right?”

“It is, but you’re here at the University meeting tons of people every day so you’ll find better people to spend your time with… I mean, what’s your major?”

She pauses for a second and, even as she’s saying it, she starts to turn red with embarrassment.

“…Oh, you know… Psychology.”

We both laugh so hard that tears roll down our faces.

Skullkickers #25 In Stores Tomorrow – Preview!

skullkickers-25

We’re finally back! Skullkickers #25 arrives in comic shops tomorrow and Comic Book Realm has a preview of the issue to whet your appetite for fantasy fun.

Emerald City Comicon This Weekend!

Convention season 2014 begins with the always-amazing Emerald City Comicon in Seattle, Washington!


MARCH 28-30
Washington Convention Center
Exhibit Floor 4, Table V-02

I’ll be exhibiting at the show all three days with Edwin Huang (artist on Skullkickers) and Andy Suriano (artist on Samurai Jack) and we’ll have books and comics on hand for you to check out, including limited variant covers, sketch covers, prints, and more!

ECCC2014

In addition I’ll also be on five different panels over the weekend:

FRIDAY
Image Comics Presents Comedy in Comics
Room TCC 301 from 3:00 – 3:50PM

Sometimes the best comics are the funny ones, but getting jokes across in print while simultaneously telling an engaging story can be tough. Luckily, we have Rob Guillory, Roc Upchurch, Chip Zdarsky, Jim Zub, Kurtis Wiebe, Brandon Graham, Matt Fraction who can tell you their secrets, tips, and a few really good jokes.

Story Science
Room 2B from 5:00 – 5:50PM

Writer and Art Director Jim Zub and Disney Artist Chris Oatley (Host of iTunes’ #1 Illustration Podcast) combine storytelling tips from the comics and animation worlds to share fresh perspective for writers and artists alike.

SATURDAY
It Came From Hall B!! Convention Horror Stories
Room HALL B (608-609) from 1:10 – 2:00PM

Join Katie Cook (My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic) and Jim Zub (Samurai Jack) for our fan-favorite con horror stories panel! What’s it like working as a pro on the convention ‘circuit’? Ridiculous? It can be. Embarrassing? Sometimes, but it’s always entertaining! (May not be appropriate for all ages)

SUNDAY
IDW: The Super Secret Cartoon Network Panel
Room TCC 301 from 11:00 – 11:50AM

Join IDW’s Editor Supreme, Sarah Gaydos and a veritable cornucopia of Cartoon Network creators, as they reveal hidden secrets of Samurai Jack, The Powerpuff Girls, Dexter’s Laboratory, and Ed, Edd, and Eddy?! Q&A, secret announcements, never-before-seen images, hijinks and more!

Writers Unite: Writing and Pitching Creator-Owned Comics
Room 2B from 1:00 – 1:50PM

Creator-owned comics are back in a big way and publishers are looking for new stories. Charles Soule (Superman/Wonder Woman) and Jim Zub (Samurai Jack) discuss writing, pitching, and breaking into the business.

New Interview on USA Today

Brian Truitt at USA Today interviewed me about Amanda Waller just in time for this week’s release of the SUICIDE SQUAD: AMANDA WALLER one-shot I wrote for DC Comics. Click through to find out more about my take on her as a leader and hero and to read an exclusive preview of the issue.

AmandaWallerCover

Samurai Jack #6 Reviews!

Samurai Jack #6 came out this week and it included the triumphant return of the Scotsman, one of the series’ most infamous characters. What did reviewers think of it? Read on and find out…

SamuraiJack06

Shadowhawk’s Shade: 10/10 “Overall, this was a far better issue than I was expecting. The story was definitely a big surprise, and I honestly have zero complaints about it. Zero. None.”

Rock! Shock! Pop!: “It’s another fine entry in the run, and if you’ve enjoyed what the creative team has done with the series so far you’ll enjoy this too.”

The Outhouse: “I feel this is Jim Zub’s strongest issue to date, as it shows his writing strength, with all its twists and turns. Samurai Jack takes everything enjoyable about the television show and expands on it, never once feeling rehashed.”

Geeked Out Nation: “Samurai Jack #6 is a great start for the new story arc. It is all setup for the story going forward and is very new reader friendly. With the welcome return of a fan favorite character, it is not one to be missed.”

Unleash the Fanboy: “The art by Brittney Williams effortlessly captures the style of the original cartoon. Add in the colors by Josh Burcham and you have a rock-solid display that does not disappoint.”

Comic Book Therapy: 4/5 “This puts Jack and the Scotsman in a brand-new predicament, the likes of which we’ve never seen before. This is a strong story in its own right, but the humor really sets it over the top.”

Nerds on the Rocks: 6/7 “Jim Zub amazes me with his ability to take a storyline that seems relatively thin on the surface and turns it into a rich, thick, personality and character driven tale that never drags its feet.”

Razorfine: 4/5 “The return of The Scotsman (whatever his current form) and the unique nature of the story set-up what should be one of Jack’s more memorable adventures (with some nice art by Brittney Williams).”

Comic Booked: 5/5 “This zany plotline for the next couple of issues is exactly the kind of thing to expect from Samurai Jack in his time travelling escapades.”

Skullkickers #28 Solicitation

Arriving in June, so please pre-order now!

SK28-585x900-web

SKULLKICKERS #28
story: JIM ZUB
art: EDWIN HUANG & MISTY COATS
cover: JAMES GHIO
JUNE 25 / 32 PAGES / FC / T / $3.50
“A DOZEN COUSINS AND A CRUMPLED CROWN,” Part Four

Dastardly doubles duel while deranged dwarves dig deep. Don’t deny dis dynamic demented drama.

New Samurai Jack Interview on Fictional Frontiers

Fictional-Frontiers

I spoke to Sohaib at Fictional Frontiers about working on Samurai Jack, what made the show so great, and other projects on my plate and thoughts about the industry. Click on through and give it a listen.

Disney Kingdoms: Figment Arrives in June!

Okay, it’s finally been unveiled. I’m writing Disney Kingdoms: Figment, an origin story about the eccentric inventor called Dreamfinder and his dream dragon Figment, based on the famous ‘Journey Into Imagination‘ attraction at Walt Disney World. The first issue arrives in June and you can pre-order it now through your local comic retailer.

Figment_1_Cover
Cover art by John Tyler Christopher


Announcement: Geek & Sundry
Interview: Marvel.com
Interview: Comic Book Resources
Interview: Nerdist
Interview: Comic Vine
Article: D23-The Official Disney Fan Club
Article: Inside the Magic
Article: Diz Radio
Article: The Disney Blog
Article: ICV2

OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE:
This summer, journey into the exciting depths of your own imagination in FIGMENT #1, the new Disney Kingdoms series created by the unique collaboration between Marvel and Walt Disney Imagineering. This five-issue series, created by rising star writer Jim Zub (Skullkickers), fan-favorite artist Filipe Andrade (Captain Marvel) and blockbuster cover artist John Tyler Christopher, weaves an all-new steampunk fantasy adventure that reveals the never-before-told origin of the inventor known as Dreamfinder and his trusty dragon companion!

A mainstay of Walt Disney World’s Epcot® Theme Park, Figment and the enigmatic inventor Dreamfinder have captivated visitors of EPCOT’s Journey Into Imagination attraction for years and Marvel and Disney are proud to bring their exciting story to the masses this June!

“Can you imagine the never-before-revealed origin of one of Disney’s most creative characters? Can you picture a Marvel spin on the Epcot® Theme Park’s mind-expanding attraction, Journey Into Imagination? Have you ever wondered how the inventor known as Dreamfinder created a certain inquisitive purple dragon?” says editor Bill Rosemann. “Be prepared for all of these answers–not to mention amazing creatures, magical lands, and cool clockwork contraptions–in FIGMENT!”

“Expanding the story of Figment has been intimidating, but I’m genuinely enjoying it,” says writer Jim Zub in an interview with Marvel.com. “I want to do right by Disney fans and new readers alike, creating an entertaining story and that comes from working with engaging characters. Digging a bit deeper into Figment and Dreamfinder has been a fun challenge. In so many ways this story really is a ‘Journey Into Imagination’, in both word and deed.”

This summer, all it takes is one little spark to let your imagination take flight. Don’t miss the highly anticipated debut of the next title in the Disney Kingdoms family when FIGMENT hits comic shops this June!

FIGMENT #1 (OF 5)
Written by Jim Zub
Penciled by Filipe Andrade
Cover by John Tyler Christopher
Elements based on Figment © Disney
32 PGS./All Ages …$3.99

ShiftyLook Closing…

I’ve known for some time, but the news is finally percolating to the surface publicly: ShiftyLook will no longer be producing new webcomic content by the end of this month.

I wrote a plethora of strips for the site at different points in its development: Wonder Momo, Klonoa, Sky Kid, and Dragon Spirit. Getting the chance to create new stories and characters for so many game properties was a blast. The gang at ShiftyLook were incredibly supportive and hard working, and gave the creative teams brought on board lots of latitude to create the stories we wanted to tell. We were well paid and well treated through and through.

The original purpose of ShiftyLook, a streamlined way to reintroduce older Bandai-Namco IPs and put them in front of as big an audience as possible for a fraction of the cost of developing a new video game or anime, was forward thinking and had a lot of potential. I wish it had lived up to that more fully and hope the work created for it stays around in one form or another.

Klonoa: Dream Traveler of Noctis Sol doesn’t wrap up with a definitive ending, so I hope Hitoshi Ariga and I are able to revisit it at some point down the road. Even still, it was great adding to such a beloved cast of characters.

Wonder Momo: Battle Idol will be wrapping up with strip #200 and it has a solid ending that’s been planned for some time. I’m really proud that Erik, Omar, and I were able to bring Momo back to the masses and build it up into ShiftyLook’s most popular strip, which was then spun off into an anime mini-series and upcoming video game. I hope Wonder Momo carries on with the momentum we generated.

In any case, these kinds of things are out of our control. Like any work for hire project you can only do what you’re assigned to the best of your ability, and that’s what all of us on the team did. Thank you for your support!

If you enjoyed the Wonder Momo story online, please consider pre-ordering the upcoming print collection coming from UDON:


WonderMomoVol1
Wonder Momo: Battle Idol Vol. 1

Momoko was a typical Japanese teenager with dreams of becoming a famous pop idol, until an alien powersuit transformed her into the spectacular Wonder Momo! This cosmic hero punches, kicks, and hula hoops her way through monsters, henchmen, robots, and her most dangerous foe… the dreaded paparazzi!
PRE-ORDER!
Amazon.com
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository
Chapters-Indigo
Midtown Comics