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The Comics Alternative

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.


Jan 8, 2016

On this episode of The Comics Alternative Interviews, Derek has the pleasure of talking with Dara Naraghi and Brent Bowman, the creators behind Persia Blues (NBM/ComicsLit). The second volume of the projected trilogy, subtitled Love and War, was just released last month, and Derek talks with the two about their efforts in getting it to print. They discuss the genesis of the story and its complex narrative structure. Persia Blues is composed of two different storylines, one a realistic thread taking place in contemporary Iran and the U.S., and the other a fantastical, mythologically infused tale set in ancient Persia. What links the two stories is the protagonist, Minoo Shirazi, a young Iranian architectural student and an adventurer (depending on the storyline) coming to terms with her family and her culture. Dara and Brent discuss the challenges in balancing the two narrative threads and the process they use when creating the comic. The two originally met through the comics collective, PANEL, based out of Columbus, OH -- in fact, much of the story in the second volume of Persia Blues takes place at OSU -- and, as they discuss with Derek, their close proximity contributes to the book's development. Along the way, Brent and Dara share their thoughts on writing from woman's perspective, contemporary representations of Middle-Eastern figures, and the kind of reception Persia Blues has received within the Iranian American community. This is an informative and fun conversation that should whet your appetite for the final book in the series.

For more information on Persia Blues and its creators, check out the series' website!