Joshua Hale Fialkov

Purveyor of sheer awesomeness.

Joshua Hale Fialkov is the Harvey, Eisner, and Emmy Award nominated writer of graphic novels, animation, video games, film, and television, including:


Filtering by Category: Reviews of Me on Punks

PUNKS: THE COMIC – Summer Special #1

Punks: The Comic – Summer Special #1 finally lands after several months of anticipation, an early recommendation by Warren Ellis, and much praise lavished on Kody Chamberlain’s unique collage art. It tells a loosely constructed story of four roommates – Fist, Skull, Abe, and Dog – who thwart an alien invasion in between fighting amongst themselves. Chamberlain depicts the entire story in collage, with a stark visual style influenced by punk rock fliers and album covers. Joshua Fialkov’s story crackles with sight gags and absurdist humor.

AICN does not Hate Me.

AICN COMICS REVIEWS WAAAAY TOO MANY COMICS THIS WEEK!!! -- Ain't It Cool News: The best in movie, TV, DVD, and comic book news.

PUNKS THE COMIC: SUMMER SPECIAL #1 Writer: Joshua Fialkov Artist: Kody Chamberlain Publisher: Digital Webbing Reviewed by Humphrey LeePUNKS THE COMIC is what would happen if NEXTWAVE was actually a Sunday night cartoon on Adult Swim. That is to say, it's awesome. Just awesome. PUNKS features such characters as a humanoid body with a fist for a head that uses signs to talk, a character named Dog that has a bulldog face (well duh!), and Abe Lincoln. Yes, Abe Lincoln. And Abe Lincoln is the best new character of the year, yes he is.

Now, what's this book about, you're asking, with its cast of crazy characters and dead historical figures? Fucked if I know and shame on you for asking! Come on, does any of that sound like there's some sort of coherent storyline going on? Of course not, but just like any (good) episode of, say, “Aqua Teen Hunger Force”, it doesn't have to make sense, it just has to be hilarious. And PUNKS is all sorts of hilarious. Between Morrissey cracks, ethnic stereotypes, alien invaders in a station wagon, and a mid-issue "interview" with Rick Remender Out of Fucking Nowhere! this comic cannot help but be hilarious just like a midget in leather chaps couldn't help but be the same.

As if the comic itself couldn't be crazy enough, the "clip art" that Kody Chamerlain uses here in PUNKS helps enhance the oddball experience. What I mean by "clip art" is that PUNKS uses panels made up by actually cut out pictures arranged to make all the characters, settings, etc. Very unique and unusual, but very creative and entertaining as well which is pretty much exactly how this book should be described.

PUNKS is crazier than Britney Spears with a heroin needle and a Cabbage Patch doll, but ever the moreso entertaining. The sooner we get more of this the better, unlike the aforementioned Ms. Spears. I'm not sure you could find a better deal out there for just $5 right now...well, okay, except for maybe Britney Spears...sorry, had to do it. Cheers...

Pop Culture Shock on Punks

Brendan & Adan’s Picks, Pans & Scans - August 29, 2007 » PopCultureShock

Punks the Comic Summer SpecialAdan: What the fuck?

So there’s a dog-man, a Ghost Rider look-alike, a dude with a fist for a head, and Abraham Lincoln, and they all live in an apartment together while fighting off alien invasions and eating dead hookers. So, again, I ask: what the fuck?

This is too absurdist for me. I like Kody Chamberlain’s collage-style art, but even that gets really weird sometimes. Throw in the fact the comic is interrupted a few times by things like the thirteenth page missing, an interview with Rick Remender the fish, and an alien invasions PSA, and this thing is just too damn weird. Fans of The Young Ones will probably enjoy the hell out of this.

Seattle P.I. says…

Comics Corner: For fans of the comic book

Punks the Comic Summer Special #1 A very interesting fun story written by Joshua Fialkov and a wild and crazy art style by Kody Chamberlain. Four characters, Abe, Dog, Skull, and Fist, all with their namesake for a head... And they live in a house together in anarchy. It's very hard to explain other than there is an alien attack and dead hookers, and wooden indians with Rick Remender doing an interview as a fish. If you like the show Young Ones than you'll love this. Otherwise check the site they came from here

Punks gets it’s First Review!

My sense of humor is dark and I tend to go for the less conventional sometimes when it comes to favorite movies, cds and books of all time. That said, I hope I'm not the only one that enjoys this type of book. Please prove me wrong and that I'm not a mental case for enjoying this book very much.

We hope so, too, Gianluca.  Go and check out what the man has to say.

Postcards in USA Today

I'm still searching for a print copy, but, here's the review. New graphic novels straight from the drawing board -

Postcards: True Stories That Never Happened Edited by Jason Rodriguez Villard, 160 pp., $21.95

Jason Rodriguez relishes a good story, even if it's just a fragment of one. For Postcards, he combed antique shops for thought-provoking cards, then passed them to comic-book writers and artists. The result is a mishmash of tales that blend tiny truths ("The new barn is up") with imagined details of lost loves, war heroes and forbidden desires. Highlights include Micah Farritor's beautiful illustrations with Joshua Hale Fialkov's story about Americans in France during the Great Depression and a crime-fighting scene written by Robert Tinnell and drawn by Brian Fraim. It's fascinating to see artists' take on, in Rodriguez's words, the "turn-of-the-century equivalent of modern-day text messages." — Matheson

Library Journal on Elk’s Run

Graphic Novels - 7/15/2007 - Library Journal

Fialkov, Joshua Hale (text) & Noel Tuazon & Scott A. Keating (illus.). Elk's Run. Villard: Random. 2007. ISBN 978-0-345-49511-2. pap. $19.95. FFor a group of disillusioned Vietnam vets, isolationist utopia in a hidden West Virginia valley is "like heaven"—for a time. But small problems grow larger as the valley children mature and dreams dissolve into violence and flames. When a man tries to escape from the valley to join his estranged wife, he accidentally kills a town teen and is horribly executed by tough-ass leader John for violating the town's isolationist "agreement." Then two state troopers show up, and John kills them also. In a cat-and-mouse game in the underground mine, it's John's son, young John, who leads the other teens to escape and bring help for the rest of the town when the mine starts burning. This thriller combines dark and edgy psychodrama infusing the coming-of-age theme with a blurring of the usual good vs. evil clichés. There are no bad guys—only good intentions gone terribly over the edge. The sketchy art and ocher-crimson coloring evoke a lifestyle badly frayed and heading for disaster. The underpinnings of teens vs. parents and idealism vs. ethics make the title a good bet for classroom use. Strong language; recommended for older teens up in public and academic libraries.—M.C.

Douglas Adams Hyperland

Douglas Adams was a genius. Truly a man before his time. Case in point, Hyperland. A documentary discussing the idea of Hypertext (y'know, that whole internet thing) from 1990, that more or less explains exactly how the internet ended up evolving in a startalingly accurate vision. The idea of literary hypertext is certainly a part of the zeitgeist, especially amongst us comic folks, with our production blogs, soundtrack listings, podcasts, commentaries, and so on. It's pretty damn cool to see nearly twenty years ago is good ol' Mr. Adams explaining it all in simple, understandable, and suprisingly not dated language. It's cut up into four parts, but  here's the first to get you started.

Tony Isabella on Elk’s Run

World Famous Comics >> Tony's Online Tips - Tony Isabella, Jul 10, 2007

Elk's Run

Mounting dread is the signature mood of the opening scenes of Elk's Run by Joshua Hale Failkov with artists Noel Tuazon and Scott A. Keating [Villard; $19.95] as we are introduced to the title "star" and quickly made aware things aren't quite right in that secluded hamlet. The war-scarred veterans who found it were looking to create an old-fashioned haven from the corrupt world without, but, through the manipulation of their fears and the betrayals of their leader, their dream has become a nightmare. Fittingly, it's a small group of teens - children, really - who embark upon a rite of passage that will change the town and their lives forever.

Fialkov eases us into the disturbing world of Elk's Run, but the first instances of violence in this 200-page graphic novel are relatively tame: a mother slapping a disrespectful son and an awful but not uncommon traffic fatality. It's in the second chapter that the magnitude of the town's wrongness is revealed. From there on in, the terror grows and doesn't stop until the story reaches its satisfying conclusion. With so many extended comics epics proving themselves unable to close the deal, it's great to come across one that finishes as strong as it begins.

Artists Tuazon and Keating hold up their end of the deal. The storytelling is solid throughout the GN. Their visuals convey the drama and emotion journey of the characters and the situations with which they are forced to deal. If this trio of creators have more books in them, I want to read them.

Ignore the puerile intro by Charlie Huston. It's an exercise, a mercifully brief exercise, in dropping the F-bomb for no reason. I accept such coarseness when it's part and parcel of a character in a story. I see small need for it outside the bounds of fiction, especially when one is the opening act for an exceptional work like Elk's Run.

Would you kiss your mother with that mouth?

Skip the introduction, but do read Elk's Run at your earliest opportunity. It earns the full five Tonys.

I believe that's printed in the current issue of Comic Buyer's Guide, which I decree you should go out and support.  They've been very supportive of my work over the years, and it's a pretty in depth look at comics today, written by some of the best and brightest in the business.

Static Multimedia on Elk’s Run

Static Multimedia - Elk's Run

Right from the get-go, the introduction of Elk's Run tells you just how smart this graphic novel is. Caveat emptor, this book is going to make you think about stuff. Put it down if you're afraid to think for yourself. This book is important. Joshua Hale Fialkov has gone to the mountain, seen the truth, and brought back mana from heaven. Yadda-yadda-yadda.So what does Elk's give us that any other angst-ridden contemporary American literature doesn't? Well, I'll tell you. It is extremely well-written, with only a few minor flaws.

Thrushmetal on Elk’s Run

"Small towns usually make sure their places of doom disappear"* -- Elk's Run, by Joshua Hale Fialkov « The Thrushmetal Review

It’s violent, yet not gratuitously so. Nonetheless, the writing exemplifies realistic, dystopian-horror fiction and suspenseful comic book writing at its finest, most skillful level. Collectors of fine graphic novels will certainly wish to add this to their bookshelves and will certainly read it more than once. This is one of the best graphic novels I have read this year, and another example of how sophisticated the sequential art format can be. “A”-freaking-plus.

Digital Otaku on Princess Resurrection

This is the Manga I did the adaptation of. First volume is on it's way to stores soon. Here it is on Amazon if you're interested. It's really, really good if you're into the whole Buffy/Evil Dead thing. Digital Otaku

Princess Resurrection has an interesting, developing storyline and a couple of strong characters to support it. I’m pretty sure this manga is going to do well and for fans of the genre (like myself), anyone with the slightest interest in all things dark, supernatural and macabre should definitely check out this manga.

The Comic Waiting Room on Elk’s Run

Review by Marc Mason

What makes the book so gripping is the banal evil at its heart. No one in Elk’s Ridge believes that they’re an evil or bad person at first; they’re solely trying to protect their personal utopia. It’s only when pressed that each character begins to discover who they truly are and what they’re made of. But it’s the struggle of the kids that gives the book its “oomph”; many books and films with teenagers at the core lack depth, because the kids don’t dream about things of importance. Not so with ELK’S RUN, as the kids must take a stand and risk their lives for the chance to lead any sort of life with meaning. This is really a very fine effort, and the book was worth the wait. Congratulations to the creative team for finally seeing their vision completed.

Click the link for the rest.  Thanks for the kind words, guys!

Comics Should Be Good on Elk’s Run

Comics Should Be Good! » Buy Alice in Sunderland and Elk’s Run right now, just because I told you to!

Elk’s Run got a second chance when Villard picked it up and agreed to publish it, because apparently absolutely no one was reading the single issues. This is a marvelous comic that deserves all the accolades it gets (and deserves a better introduction than Charlie Huston’s, which is … odd, to say the least). There is no reason whatsoever for you not to buy this book. It’s a gripping story with wonderful characters and excellent art. It’s full of action but it also has some interesting things to say about our world and the way we run our lives. Do yourself a favor and buy it.

There's also quite a bit of analysis, and comparison to the just released Alice in Sunderland, in terms of themes and stuff.  Pretty interesting read, if I do say so myself.