Panel Press logo

Raised By Squirrels is published by Panel Press.


You never call! Maybe you should instead? Seriously, we'd love to know what you think about RBS.


Occasional posts from (usually) Bram and (sometimes) Monica about comics in general, this comic in particular, art, design, publishing, visual culture, and far, far too many things about actual squirrels.


The report from an epic New Comic Night:
  • The Perhapanauts #2 — not sure what got me on the Perhapanauts when they first started; it's not great, but consistently a lot of fun. One of the things they do well is wrap up one story and launch another or two or three in the same issue. The backup in this one, though, is way weak.

  • The Immortal Iron Fist #15, I think wraps up the Brubaker/Fraction run (and, at least, no Brubaker here). It's another one-shot, with a tale of another Iron Fist. Entertaining enough, but predictable, though with a nice fable-like quality. Enjoyed Khari Evans' work since Daughters of the Dragon, so it's nice to look at.

  • Which brings us to Fables #73 and the beginning of the big war. Not a lot happens in this issue, but it seemed packed with goings-on. I'm happy that Willingham is willing to move the story along and allow characters to progress, grow, change and kick some @$$.

  • Everyone Laughs at the Crocodile Man — I ran across Midnight Fiction's review of this mini, and the price was right. I was hoping for more cubicle culture satire, but it's a good read, a look at the (every)crocodile man's life. Not giving away too much to say that he doesn't talk, but his eyebrows speak volumes.

  • Secret History of the Authority: Hawksmoor #3 maybe moved a bit slow, but Staples' art is so great to look at, and the story moves along its odd, California-noir route. It's delving a bit more into his origin, but I have faith that it'll all pull together satisfyingly in the main story.

  • What can I add to the ISB's review of Helen Killer #2? Not too much, but the whole notion of "the Shadow," what that means to Helen, and how she behaves under the influence of the Omnicle adds another layer to what is already an unconventional approach to an unusual story.

  • All-Star Superman #11 marks the beginning of the end. This one seemed so very Morrison (there's been a lot of Morrison re-reading going on at Squirrel Central recently), esp. with the addition of Luthor's niece. This has been such an odd take on Superman, so perceptive about the nature of heroes, but still kind of uneven. This one's reliance on obscure characters was frustrating, but the setup for the final chapter is pretty amazing.

  • And then, of course, Astonishing X-Men #24. Was it everything I hoped? Probably not. But damned close. Bringing in the rest of the Marvel universe? OK, but gets in some great moments at their expense. Brand, so much better and so much more than I could have thought, makes me hope she wasn't really killed off in Secret Invasion. The ending, should've seen coming a million miles away, but didn't and it's perfect. I've been a convert to the cult of Joss since Jett pointed me to this series and then got me watching Firefly, and this certainly seals my zealotry.


Well, the latest Watchmen promo photo continues to give hope. As does splitting off Tales of the Black Freighter into its own movie, but I still have this feeling of dread…

In case you missed the news (like I did, but Paul told me), and/or just kept forgetting (like I did, but Paul reminded me), the folks behind the original MST3K have a new project — Cinematic Titanic.

We watched The Oozing Skull over the weekend and had some good laughs. I would say the chemistry isn't quite there (yet), and there were a few too many empty spots that needed quips. Still, though, worth supporting these fine, funny folks in their new venture.


Caught Iron Man the other night — an awful lot of fun. Successful for focusing on Tony Stark, and casting Downey as Stark was the key to that.

And, while going to IMDb to try and figure out why Jarvis' voice sounded so familiar (no luck there), discovered that one of the "insurgents" was played by the guitarist from Rage Against the Machine.


The report from New Comic Night:
  • The Spirit — I've been meaning to drop this since Cooke left, but I flipped to the first page at the shop, saw some of the Spirit's expressions, said "why not?" ('cause all those Hellboy trades I'm missing weren't in stock, that's why not). Saw the ending coming a mile away, but the way the plots passed by and crossed each other, almost Eisner-esque.

  • Fantastic Four — after giving me much grief, apparently Chris at the LCS is on board with the "best since Lee/Kirby" hype about this series. I'm not sure I'd go that far, but Millar/Hitch are doing a respectable job of meeting our modern expectations and combining the kind of anything goes sort of fun of the early days. Recommended reading.

  • The Programme continues to confound expectations, confuse me keeping the characters straight (reading all at once, I'm sure it'll all be clear), and move to conclusion by the most unexpected route possible. The twists and turns in exactly what this story is about have proven mostly entertaining, and now I just want to see how it all wraps up next issue.

  • Grendel: Behold The Devil — oh, I've been so happy to see a simple Wagner-written and -drawn Hunter Rose story, but if if turns out that the point of this series was just to show Hunter a future (and us a past) of where the whole Grendel story went, I'll be sorely disappointed. But we've got one more issue and (at least) two more innocent bystander lives still to be ruined in true Grendel fashion, so I'm hopeful.

  • I've all seven volumes of Invincible on loan from Raph, and went through 2 and 3 last night. Maybe I'm just being contrary, but I'm not really seeing the big deal with this series. It really picked up with … that big revelation halfway through vol. 2 and subsequent fallout in 3. There's a lot going on that's good, the creation of a whole world inhabited by a creative cast of characters, juggled through multiple plotlines and allowed to progress in their own (intertwined?) stories. But there's a lot about the writing and the art that still leaves me kinda cold. Four more volumes to see if my opinion changes.


An excerpt from the new Jack Kirby bio by Mark Evanier. Via Jeff.


Well, the name connection caught my attention at The Comics Reporter, so followed the link to cartoonist Kieran Meehan's site. I like what I saw and read, and somehow missed out on ever hearing about "The Meehan Streak." But is just me or does that little calendar over on the side of the "View Comic Strips" get you nowhere?

Update: Jeff points out that you have to go back to 07 and earlier. There we go.


The new issues of 7000 BC's regular anthology series are posted — download string #3, featuring the latest installment of the post-Death, Cold As Steel adventures of Estelle and Norris; and string #4, with the latest issue of RBS. Note that #4 is recommended for mature readers.


All sorts of Ian Fleming and James Bond goodness in this NYT article. But mostly I got a kick out of Alan Borg's quote used to justify the exhibit.


The report from New Comic Night:
  • Casanova #14 — I've not read much Pynchon or Vonnegut, but the way I remember them, the sort of things that irked me about their work irritate me here. How does this get to be a regular purchase then? First, Monica likes it. The art is amazing; it was my first exposure to Gabriel Ba, and when he left, I almost dropped it there until I saw Fabio Moon — and the "two-color" design is clever and works in service to the story. It's one of the $1.99 Image series that delivers maximum story for minimum cost (note to Warren: more Fell, please KTHX). But mostly, there's such a sense of fun to the whole series, clearly a labor of love for all involved, and that's infectious. This issue concludes my favorite story arc yet, where Casanova wasn't even in the story (well, kinda, as revealed here), so we'll see where it goes.

  • With Thunderbolts #120, things really picked up in this arc. It's been an enjoyable read, but pretty much the perfect example of decompression, just stretching out the tale. I'm a big fan of about 60% of Ellis' stuff, mostly his take on the "underwear perverts" that he so enjoys putting down, and this is an entertaining, gritty read about unpleasant people doing awful things.

  • Talking with Chris at the LCS about last week's Fraction's Iron Man, he found it weak, preferring Favreau's Iron Man: Viva Las Vegas. Talked me into buying it. And, decompression? You're soaking in it. A few-minute read, setup that could've taken half an issue. But the premise looks like it could be fun, the tone is right. Whether I follow this will depend on what else is out that week.

  • At last week's 7000 BC meeting, Josh passed along his minicomic Hotshower #4. Six or so months ago, he was a writer looking for an artist, and I recommended that he just start drawing, given the glut of writers around here. Now he's writing and drawing regular issues, heavily comix-influenced, mostly autobiographical (or are they?) vignettes. And he's laying it all out there in a unique, raw style, circling around some recurring themes and revealing more, bit by bit. There's a lot of adult material, a fair amount of it pretty uncomfortable, but it puts most of those autobio comics out there to shame.


Last night, headed to the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture for the preview party for the exhibition Comic Art Indigène. It's an unusual premise, but there's some nice historical pieces presented along with some inventive contemporary work that, combined with the presentation and writing, bring it all together.


The report from New Comic Night:
  • Midnighter #19 — why am I buying this? (Short answer: sometimes it's all that's in my pull box.) I don't believe anyone's really added anything to The Authority beyond Ellis and Millar. The first arc, Pairing Ennis and Sprouse, was entertaining enough, but didn't find either at their best and didn't add anything to the Midnighter mythology. Subsequent issues were uneven (BKV's a standout), but I had faith that Giffen would put together a good continuing story when he came on board. The first arc had promise and then just kind of … ended. It picks up in this arc, which moves along well enough, but still isn't terribly compelling. Maybe it'll all hang together better as one big read.

  • Avengers/Invaders #1 got picked up because not much else was in my pull box this week (see above) and I got the sketchbook at FCBD last week. Recently finished Winter Soldier, so I'm not buying the young, naive Bucky who's narrating (and narrating, and narrating) this issue. Seems like an homage to several old-style comics, with time travel and big fights, and Spidey wisecracking (and wisecracking, and wisecracking), but so far, not really bringing too much that's new. Maybe I'll give it another issue because this one's all setup, but so far, not the epic I was hoping for.

  • Invincible Iron Man #1 — don't really have a history with Shellhead, but I'm following Fraction. And this one's worth it. Again, a lot of setup in this one, but handles it deftly with clever narration and a promising premise that doesn't rely on too much familiarity with what's going on in the MU now. Picks up some on where the truncated The Order left off, but stands on its own with a cast of characters with distinctive voices and agendas. This'll be a regular purchase.


Seems that the Library of Congress has been given the original art to Amazing Fantasy #15. It's not often that I wish I was back in DC.

New Bond covers. Looks to be a whole rethinking and repackaging, probably a good idea. Is it just me and my laptop/browser, or are those covers popups not filling the frame? Anyhoo, love the 007 Penguin logo.

Posted to an old link about cover redesigns 'round this time last year, but the Penguin article rightfully notes that everyone's been beholden to the movie imagery. Not that their stuff doesn't remind me of something, it's very much its own design and approach.

(Via Coudal)


New Richard Thompson book! Did you hear me? New book!


An analysis of the opening pages of Scalped #3 — which you have no good reason for not having read by now. OK, I'm part of the problem, only getting the trades (and having just picked up 2), but the stuff they're doing with that series is extraordinary.

Via Blog@Newsarama.

(One of) Chip Kidd's covers for Time. Showing he's a genius, and he can do the predictable, safe stuff, too; plus Neville Brody shows he's still got typographic skillz.

Via GD USA's email newsletter.


When they're sifting through the rubble of our civilization, I suspect this will figure heavily in the discoveries.


Marc sent along some breakdowns for a comic we're doing. One of the things I like so much about his artwork is the character he brings to, well, the characters. This is a visual medium, so it adds so much to the story and does a lot of the work of the writer. Even in his sketches, it's evident, so here's a selection from a few of the panels.

I could easily just turn this blog into a bunch of links to the Cul de Sac blog, because Richard Thompson is so awesome.

Just to note, though: 1. I saw Star Wars before it got big (remember, it was released for weeks before it was a Phenomenon? something that can't really happen in this day and age) because it was a heat wave, and my parents wanted to go where the air conditioning was; 2. The Uptown is one of those theaters that make communal moviegoing worthwhile (if you can get parking).


'Round here at Squirrel Central, Friday night's long been New Comic Night. And last night's was epic.

  • Black Summer has covered a lot of Ellis' usual ground, but enough of the stuff of his that I find appealing. I've really just been taken by Juan Jose Ryp's art, can't quite put my finger on it, but he creates such a texture on the page, helped along by the coloring. And as Danny at the LCS pointed out, it's one of the few where the interior delivers on (and often exceeds) the cover.
  • Elephantmen War Toys conclusion — the whole Elephantmen project is one of the most infuriating and rewarding things going on now. It took about 6 or 8 issues for me to really appreciate how Starkings is bringing the whole story together, slowly and obliquely. And right as the series is building to a major plot point, he takes a break for this tale from the past. Moritat's art, usually very European sci-fi, here takes on a beautiful, loose quality.
  • The Order finishes its run, cancelled by Marvel. I got into the series late, but all at once, and wanted to see how it ended. It was disappointing, but I felt that Fraction had so much planned for this series that there was no real way it could get wrapped up satisfactorily.
  • The Immortal Iron Fist also concludes its storyline and, I believe, Fraction and Brubaker's run (if not now, soon). The story's been so much fun and handled so well, with a "how did someone not think of this already?" quality. And I was originally OK with having this talented team wrap it up — but they've left us with such a great premise, I wish they would keep telling the Iron Fist tale.
  • Helen Killer, which I've been looking forward to since Chris first pointed it out. An insane, high-concept premise that simultaneously should've been done already and should never have been even made it out of brainstorming. And it promises to be wild fun, handled with a mix of an odd sort of reverence and tongue-in-cheek. Art's a little rough, but it's appropriate and tells the story.
  • DC Universe 0 — well, io9 lied to me. Clearly, there was a lot worth reading out this week, and this wasn't really one of them. Mostly, it's just snippets from some major upcoming arcs with a framing device; maybe it's just me, so out of the DCU, but I didn't really find any of it compelling enough to follow through.
Free Comic Book Day today, and I'll be heading over to True Believers in a while. Richard Thompson's been sharing some of his FCBD Richard's Poor Almanac from the archives here and here, and presents today's here.


7000 BC is pleased to announce a new ongoing project: string, a monthly collection of comics from group members.

Now you can download a PDF of string #1 and string #2 — and check out some of the comics being produced in northern New Mexico (along with a couple RBS stories).

Blog Archive