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The Comics Alternative - Smart Discussions on Comic Books and Graphic Novels

Two guys with PhDs talking about comics! The Comics Alternative is weekly podcast focusing on the world of alternative, independent, and primarily non-superhero comics. (There's nothing wrong with superhero comics. We just want to do something different.) New podcast episodes become available every Wednesday and include reviews of graphic novels and current ongoing series, discussions of upcoming comics, examinations of collected editions, in-depth analyses of a variety of comics texts, and spotlights on various creators and publishers. The Comics Alternative also produces "special feature" programs, such as shows specifically dedicated to creator interviews, webcomics, on-location events, and special non-weekly themes and topics.
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The Comics Alternative - Smart Discussions on Comic Books and Graphic Novels
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Now displaying: Category: previews
Mar 8, 2017

It's the first part of March, which means it must be time for the Two Guys with PhDs to look through the latest Previews catalog. Before they do that, though, they alert readers to this month's #trypod social media campaign and encourage listeners to share their love of The Comics Alternative by using that hashtag along with #try2guys. Next, they give a big THANK YOU to Kristin and Thomas at the Secret Stacks podcast for their recent shout-out. Then they get into the March Previews catalog, highlighting a variety of upcoming titles from both large and small publishers alike. Among the upcoming comics they discuss are offerings from:

Feb 8, 2017

Hobos!

It's that time of the month, and on this week's regular episode of the podcast, Andy and Derek take a look at the February Previews catalog. Before they do that, though, they update everyone on current comics news and podcast updates, as well as share listener mail. Then they get into the current Previews catalog, highlighting a variety of upcoming titles from both large and small publishers alike. Among the upcoming comics they discuss are offerings from:

Preorder your copies of some of the titles mentioned in this episode:

 

Jan 4, 2017

Happy New Year from the Two Guys with PhDs Talking about Comics! On this, their first regular episode of 2017, Andy and Derek take their monthly gander at the current Previews catalog. Before they do that, though, they welcome and thank a couple of new Patreon supporters to the Comics Alternative family, including Alla Rull, who becomes the latest of the guys' official Podcast Patrons. Then they jump headlong into the January Previews, highlighting a variety of upcoming titles from both large and small publishers alike. Among the interesting fare found in this month's catalog are offerings from:

Dec 7, 2016

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The Two Guys with PhDs are back for their final Previews show of 2016. In this episode, Andy and Derek do what they usually do, going through the current catalog from not quite beginning to end, highlighting the offerings from the premiere publishers as well as from small presses. Among the solicitations they note are offerings from:

Nov 2, 2016

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Where did October go?! You mean the month is over, and it's already time to look at the November Previews catalog?

YES!

And as usual the Two Guys with PhDs rise to the occasion, looking through the most interesting solicitations and making the kind of astute observations as only they can do. For example, Andy and Derek notice an unusually large number of Spanish comics making their way into this month's listings. Is this a mere coincidence? Or might this be the kind of ethnic migratory crisis spouted by the likes of Donald J. Trump? Resisting any tendency to go batshit orange, the guys stick to the matter at hand, calmly and methodically going through the November Previews catalog and highlighting upcoming titles from publishers such as

Oct 5, 2016

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It's the first week of October, the beginning of the month, so that must mean that it's time once again for Andy and Derek to look through the latest Previews catalog. However, before they delve into the current solicits they take a few moments to thank two new Patreon supporters and welcome them to the noble ranks of Comics Alternative patrons. Then, after a few comments about the upcoming Comics Crossroads Columbus, the Two Guys get  into the meat of the episode. Among the many upcoming titles they highlight from the October Previews catalog are from publishers such as

Sep 7, 2016

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It's the beginning of September, the first of the month, so that must mean it's time for the Two Guys with PhDs Talking about Comics to look at the latest Previews catalog. As they do every month, Andy and Derek carefully go through the the Diamond publication, highlighting upcoming titles they're interested in, commenting on solicitations that sound interesting, and discussing creators they look forward to reading. Among the many comics they mention on this episode are from publishers such as

Aug 3, 2016

This week on the podcast, Andy and Derek discuss the August Previews catalog. Even more importantly, the Two Guys celebrate the four-year anniversary of the podcast! That's right, The Comics Alternative is now four years old, having its first episode published on August 1, 2012. So this episode begins with a brief assessment of the many episodes they've done over the years. But the core of this week's show is a discussing of the solicitations in the latest Previews...and there are a lot of them worth mentioning. So many, in fact, that this is another extra long episode. Among the many upcoming title Derek and Andy highlight are from publishers such as

Jul 6, 2016

It's the first of the month, and that must mean that it's time for the Two Guys with PhDs to take a deep dive into the latest Previews catalog. For the month of July, there's a lot for Andy and Derek to discuss. And in between speculations on solicitation-writing strategies and disagreements on how to pronounce "gyros," the guys pack as much as they can into this almost-two-hour episode. Among the many solicits they highlight are from publishers such as

Jun 1, 2016

It's the first of the month, and that must mean that it's time, once again, for the Two Guys with PhDs to take a conversational stroll through the latest Previews catalog. For the month of June, there is an inordinately large number of notable titles for Derek and Andy W. to discuss, making this a longer-than-average episode (a little over two hours). So strap in and get ready to boogie! Among the many solicits they highlight are from publishers such as

Andy and Derek also discuss the new Goodreads reading group The Comics Alternative is setting up, and they ask listeners for their input in how they'd like to use that social media platform. They also share some audience feedback and encourage everyone to go to the podcast's iTunes page to leave a rating and review, if they haven't already.  In other words, do your part for The Comics Alternative!

May 4, 2016

Hold on to your butts! It's another substantive, jam-packed episode where the Two Guys look through the latest Previews catalog. And for May, Andy W. and Derek see a lot of good stuff, enough to make this a longer-than-average episode. (Yes, the guys are going into 2+ hours territory again, but only slightly.) Among the many solicits Andy and Derek highlight are of titles from publishers such as

In addition, Derek and Andy discuss other matters, including a correction from last week's publisher spotlight -- Melissa Mendes's Lou is actually an Alternative Comics publication, not from Hic + Hoc -- and an email of appreciation they received from Jon Allen whose book, Ohio Is for Sale, was discussed in that same episode. They also talk a little bit about this coming weekend's Free Comic Book Day, wonder over the new Image+ insert magazine (and Andy is pissed that he didn't get one with his copy of Previews), poke fun at Millarworld, and point out the truly freaky and absolutely unnecessary Big Head Walking Dead figures they saw in the catalog.

Apr 6, 2016

It's the first week of April, so that must mean that it's time for the Two Guys with PhDs to look through the latest Previews catalog. This month, Andy Kunka is back for his first Previews show of 2016 -- where has the time gone? -- so Derek helps him to shake off the cobwebs and get down to deep solicitation-reading business. Among the many upcoming releases they highlight are titles from publishers such as

The guys also discuss the pros and cons of DC and Image doing their own mini-catalogs, the mixed bag of publisher crossovers, and the weirdness surrounding recent book that have been repurposed as limited series. Derek also shares news about how a recent on-location episode of the podcast became a Steve Lieber boon for the manager of Collected Comics in Plano. It's apparently true: there is such a thing as The Comics Alternative bump and the success it can bring you!

Mar 2, 2016

It’s time, once again, to take a look at the current month’s Previews catalog. This time around, Derek is joined by Paul Lai, the editor of The Comics Alternative‘s blog. Although he’s been working with the Two Guys since late last year, this is the first time that Paul has cohosted a podcast episode. And his first time out is a doozie! He and Derek take an extra-long, two-and-a-half-hour stroll through the March Previews solicits, highlighting upcoming releases from publishers such as

Along the way, the guys discuss recent comics news — such as DC’s questionable “rebirth” and Image’ new Previews catalog magazine, Image+ — and even go off on a couple of rants. Derek, in particular, rags on both Marvel corporate practices and mindless Donald Trump supporters, and with a couple of “amens” from Paul. And what the hell is Smosh…and why should the guys care? But it’s the kind of jovial, curmudgeonly goodness that has come to mark The Comics Alternative brand. Accept no substitutes!

Feb 3, 2016

It’s the beginning of the month, so that must mean that it’s time for the Two Guys with PhDs to take a visual stroll through the latest Previews catalog. And Andy W. and Derek find a lot to highlight in the February issue. Despite a few frustrations — Derek doesn’t have a hardcopy of Previews and is at a disadvantage with the solicits — they have a fun and productive conversation discussing upcoming releases from

In addition, Andy and Derek share listener mail and discuss the joys of film noir and crime/noir comics. There’s a lot packed into this episode, so get out your order forms and follow along!

Jan 6, 2016

Welcome to January! As the guys do at the beginning of every month, they use this time to discuss the solicits in the latest Previews catalog. And there's a lot packed into the January issue, starting with a rundown of the 50 titles that will be featured this coming Free Comic Book Day. Gene and Derek are particularly looking forward to the FCBD comics coming out from Fantagraphics, Archie Comics, First Second Books, Image Comics, Drawn & Quarterly, Top Shelf, VIZ Media, and Nobrow. After that brief detour, they get into the catalog proper, highlight upcoming releases from publishers such as

All in all, Gene and Derek have a fun time thumbing through the January Previews catalog, making their checklists for comics they want to read, titles they'd like to discuss on the podcast, and creators they want to interview in the coming year.

Dec 2, 2015

As Andy and Derek do at the beginning of every month, they use this first week of December to flip through the latest Previews catalog, highlighting upcoming series and notable new releases that capture their attention. Among the many soon-to-be-released titles they discuss on this week's show are comics from

Also in this episode: the guys enthusiastically welcome new Patreon supporters; complain about reading from PDF files; discuss the increasing weirdness of Neal Adams; speculate on the pronunciation of "Amontillado"; anticipate next year's new SyFy series, Wynonna Earp; pat themselves on the back for getting an endorsement blurb for a major upcoming book; and, of course, give a lot of love to Fantagraphics.

Nov 4, 2015

It's the first week of November, and that means it must be time for Andy and Derek to go through the month's Previews catalog. As you may expect, there's a lot packed into the issue, and after a few words on Halloween and listener mail, they get right to the solicitations. Among the many upcoming releases they discuss on this month's Previews show are titles from

Also in this episode: the Two Guys discover that they're international sensations, Andy hobnobs with Roy Thomas, Derek is confused by Classics Illustrated, both reveal that they are Gunshow ignorant, dedicated listener Rainer Koschnick reminds the guys of PS Artbooks, and 1970s references abound. What's not to love?

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