Given my increasingly busy schedule, I’ve been finding it very difficult to set aside any time for reading. As a result, I’ve shifted focus from novels to trade paperbacks which I find equally accomplished, just as enjoyable, yet also offer the added bonus of shorter narratives that don’t require a lengthy commitment. And this got me to thinking. Present circumstances are ideal for me to do something I’ve wanted to do for quite some time: include the occasional trade paperback in our humble Book of the Month Club discussions.
And so, today, it gives me great pleasure to announce our Book of the Month Club is back, but with a comic book theme.
July’s Book of the Month Club pick is…
SWEETH TOOTH (VOL. 1: Out of the Woods) By Jeff Lemire
A cross between Bambi and Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, SWEET TOOTH tells the story of Gus, a rare new breed of human/animal hybrid children, has been raised in isolation following an inexplicable pandemic that struck a decade earlier. Now, with the death of his father he’s left to fend for himself . . . until he meets a hulking drifter named Jepperd who promises to help him. Jepperd and Gus set out on a post-apocalyptic journey into the devastated American landscape to find ‘The Preserve’ a refuge for hybrids.
This unique and haunting new series is written and illustrated by Eisner-nominated creator Lemire (The Essex County Trilogy) and colored by fellow Eisner nominee Jose Villarubia.
Discussion begins the week of July 4th with author Jeff Lemire!
And while we’re on the topic of comic books…
My editor at Dark Horse, Patrick Thorpe, forwarded me artist Garry Brown’s clothing designs for the characters of my upcoming comic book series, Dark Matter. Check ’em out:
ONE is our rough-and-tumble hero and, as a result, his clothing should reflect this: cool yet functional. He’s got to be able to kick ass and shoot ’em up, and look good doing it.
TWO needs something a little sleeker, a little more flexible to suit her fighting style. Her forte is hand-to-hand combat and her skill and dexterity make her more than a match for anyone on board. I’d make her boots a little more distinct, maybe make them a little higher and offer protection over the pads. Also, as I told Patrick: “I want her blade to be less a knife and more of a stiletto. You know, the kind you use to perforate people’s eardrums.”.
THREE is our resident bad-ass and his clothing should reflect his roughneck persona. Again, functionality is key for a guy whose most cherished possessions are his wicked sidearms. The fingerless gloves are a terrific touch, suggesting a desire for the heady tactile experience of squeezing a trigger.
FOUR is our warrior, possessed of dignity, inner-strength, and quiet ruthlessness. This clothing reflect this nobility of spirit with a nod to the samurai. Little touches like the more pronounced shoulders and sash give him a more unique and polished style.
FIVE’s spunky personality comes through in her steampunk style: harness, heavy work boots, and oversized gloves. The goggles – perfect for impromptu riveting jobs – should also come with a night-vision option that allow her to scuttle through the ship’s darker recesses with relative ease.
SIX is our big bruiser with the heart of gold and fists of stone. We want his clothing to be practical yet comfortable, an outfit that would allow to perform his shipboard duties with ease yet also lift someone over his head and heave them screaming through a plate glass window.
What do you guys think?
BTW – Dark Matter hits the shelves in January of 2012. Circle the month!
Whew! What a day! Worked on my rewrite of episode 3 (formerly episode 2) of Transporter: The Series, digested another round of notes for episode 6 (formerly episode 5), wrote and rewrote the first season episode summary tracking the show’s various character and mythology arcs, signed off on Carl’s one-pager, and discussed Janet Jackson’s affinity for coffee enemas with Alexander. My work here is done!
tidusspear08 writes: “Can you speak German?”
Answer: English, Fresh, Italian, and Japanese but, alas, no German. Fortunately, Alex is here to deal with all German inquiries.
majorsal writes: “is brad going to come to the blog and talk ‘stargate: revolution’? or carl?”
Answer: Remains to be seen. I’ll talk to Carl once he finishes work on his latest script for us.
Lou Zucaro writes: “So are you and/or Akemi spending any time looking for a new place since this one is so chaud?”
Answer: Yep. Hopefully we’ll find something soon. Barring that, I suspect we’ll spend the summer sleeping on the balcony.
Alex Crawford writes: “I decided to post here since you would actually ‘read this’ d hopefully respond. I have a solution for SGU. Can you please sent this message through to MGM. I talked to “The Syzgy Network”, a new channel coming in 2012. “
Answer: Unfortunately, the fate of the franchise is out of my hands. This is a matter that can only be addressed by the studio, MGM.
jojo writes: “Have you found that your language skills have come in handy with the European crew and locations? Will you have to go to europe to oversee filming or will you have your hands full in Toronto?”
Answer: I haven’t had the opportunity to speak much French yet but suspect I will once our stunt coordinators hit Toronto. And, no, I won’t be heading overseas. I’ll be here in Toronto, either writing/rewriting scripts or prepping and producing episodes.
enectrixx writes: “How come some civilizations (like the Touched in The Broca Divide and the Cimmerians) are so primitive and still have the same culture, behaviour, etc as when they were taken from Tau’ri when they’ve had hundreds or thousands of years to evolve?”
Answer: Could be a multitude of reasons why some civilizations adapt and evolve more rapidly than others. The use of tools and the adoption of farming practices, for instance, are huge game-changers that would certainly accelerate development.
enectrixx also writes: “Do you have any explanation as to why all the alien cultures (except the Goa’uld and a few others) speak fluent modern english?”
Answer: In my mind, every time a traveller stepped through the gate, they were reassembled on the other side with the benefit of translator nanites that allowed them to not only understand but be understood in turn. Some languages (like the goa’uld tongue) proved resistant to the technology.
Squishy writes: “Hey Joe, thanks for the updates on Transporter! Just wondering; what language will you guys using for the series? English only? or perhaps some french/german influences?”
Answer: If we’re in Germany or France, we will be hearing some German or French. It’ll be entirely location dependent.
Dale writes: “The Lucien Alliance seemed to have greater for-knowledge about Destiny and as to what it really was than anyone involved in Stargate Command. I was left with the impression they (SGC) had no idea what on the other end of the 9th chevron address, but L/A seemed to know a lot more and were prepared for what they were to encounter when they arrived. I realize Telford probably fed them some intel, but I have a hard time believing what he could have given them would have been enough (ie the gadget that opens the locked doors). Ginn mentions in “Aftermath” about legends and stories told about it. Were there any plans to expand on what the L/A knew about Destiny and where that information came from?”
Answer: I think much of it is there in the show. The information they had heard was almost mythic in nature until Telford, acting as their mole, provided them with detailed information regarding Destiny.
Dale also writes: “Were there any plans in future seasons to introduce any ascended Ancients as guest characters that might ‘walk the line’ to help out the Destiny Crew, in a similar way that Oma or Morgan le Fay did in SG-1?”
Answer: There were no immediate plans to do so. If someone had pitched the idea, I probably would have done my best to kill the story. I accept the Ancients as an ethereal background element to our story but object to having all-powerful beings intercede in mortal affairs.
Dale also writes: “You mentioned in the past technologies that you felt shouldn’t have been introduced in past Stargates as they hurt the ‘drama’ of the stories (such as beaming tech). Was there much debate about having the “Stones” be present as a plot-device?”
Answer: Yep. Not everybody in the writers’ room liked the stones. That said, they did offer a creative opportunity to contact Earth and get off the ship in a manner that wouldn’t blow the budget.
Randomness writes: “Speaking of which, is being in Toronto cutting down on your anime time too Joe?”
Answer: Yes. I’ve stopped picking up new releases because I simply don’t have time to watch them. Looking forward to catching up in a big way in 2012.
Randomness also writes: “Transporter does sound like it has a heck of a lot more stuff to organize than the average Stargate season, am I right Joe?”
Answer: Absolutely. When Paul and I joined the production in SG-1’s fourth season, Stargate was a well-oiled machine. We dealt with the studio that left us alone to do our thing, and one major broadcaster supplying notes (SciFi eventually; we never received notes from Showtime). Transporter: The Series, on the other hand, is a new show we’re building from the ground up with many more parties involved.
Randomness also writes: “Do you think Brad will produce a new Science Fiction show Joe? Doesn’t have to be Stargate, but does he have anything planned, or any ideas?”
Answer: Don’t know but I’d love to see him get yet another SF series off the ground.
Ayrton1 writes: “How did you get to the scene “Numa Numa” it was really great, have you some interesting story from behind of scene? How did you think it up?”
Answer: Thanks/blame writer-producer Carl Binder for that one. He was looking for a suitably annoying tune for the otherwise solemn scene and, after much consideration, went with Numa Numa. The perfect choice.
enectrixx writes: “How come the concept of time is the same on almost all the planets SG-1 and SGA visited? Is it just to make the story easier to tell or do you and the others have any explanation?”
Answer: Whenever possible, we tried to avoid any off-world time references. In fact, we spoofed this very subject in Wormhole Xtreme with a scene in which the alien princess notes: “It has been many bleems since my people were enslaved by the minions of Lord Varlock”.
enectrixx also writes: “Also, every time they visit a planet in SG, they just scout the immediate area (a few kilometers) around the gate. Does the SGC send other teams afterwards that investigate the whole planet (or a lot of it)?”
Answer: Given the gate’s importance, it would stand to reason that any reasonably advanced race worth pursuing contact with would build their civilization around (or in close proximity to) the stargate. That said, I’m sure the SGC followed up initial exploration with follow up missions.