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Tag Archive: Matt Miner


Meeting Lee Majors

Hey, looks like we made it!

Five years ago today, Elizabeth C. Bunce, Art Schmidt, Jason McClain, and I had already spent a few months talking through the technical details for the launch of borg.com.  What should it look like?  What should we write about?  How do we get to there from here?  Then it all came together on June 10, 2011, and I sat down and just started writing.  Should this be a weekly thing?  Once I started I just couldn’t stop and we cemented borg.com as a daily webzine.  And readers started showing up every day.  Soon we had hundreds of followers, and hundreds of thousands of visits per year.

The best part?  Working with friends and meeting new ones each year.

We’ve had plenty of high points.  Cosplay took off in a big way in the past five years.   Elizabeth and I hit the ground running at San Diego Comic-Con in July 2011 with our Alien Nation/Chuck mash-up and you can find us all over the Web in photos taken by others at the show.  Our years were dotted with the random brush with coolness.  A retweet by actress Alana de la Garza, coverage of Joss Whedon visiting the Hall H line at 3 a.m. outside SDCC in 2012, Zachary Levi calling out Elizabeth for her cosplay at Nerd HQ, interviewing the stars of History Channel’s Vikings series, our praise for the Miss Fury series appearing on the back of every Dynamite Comics issue one month, tweets from Hollywood make-up artist family the Westmores commenting on our discussion of Syfy’s Face Off series, our Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (negative!) review featured on the movie’s website, that crazy promotion for the Coma remake mini-series, planning the first Planet Comicon at Bartle Hall and the Star Trek cast reunion, attending the first Kansas City Comic Con and the first Wizard World Des Moines Con, hanging with comic book legend Howard Chaykin, Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Famer Darryl McDaniels, cast members from Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and Star Trek, bionic duo Lee Majors and Lindsay Wagner.  And borg.com gained some well-known followers (you know who you are) along the way.

sdcc-whedon-c shot

We’re grateful for some great Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, and other feedback over the years from Felipe Melo, Mickey Lam, Michael Prestage, The Mithril Guardian, Francesco Francavilla, Adam Hughes, Judy Bunce, Mike Norton, Jack Herbert, Mike Mayhew, Rain Beredo, David Petersen, Rob Williams, and Matt Miner, and for creators we interviewed including Mikel Janin, Penny Juday, Tim Lebbon, Kim Newman, James P. Blaylock, Freddie Williams II, Jai Nitz, and Sharon Shinn.

Bunce Alien Nation cosplay x

What did readers like the most?

We amassed an extensive archive of hundreds of book reviews, movie reviews, reviews of TV shows, and convention coverage, thanks in part to the good folks at Titan Books, Abrams Books, Lucasfilm Press, Weta New Zealand, Entertainment Earth, Dynamite Comics, IDW Publishing, Dark Horse Comics, Image Comics, BOOM! Studios, and several TV and movie studios and distributors.

McClain and EC Bunce

My own favorites?  Sitting down to come up with my own five all-time favorite characters with the borg.com writing staff.

Schmidt and Bunce at PC 2015

Thanks to my family, my friends, especially my partner in crime Elizabeth C. Bunce, Art Schmidt and Jason McClain, my support team, and William Binderup and the Elite Flight Crew.

Onward and upward!

C.J. Bunce
Editor
borg.com

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Toe Tag Riot variant 1

Real-life villains beware.  You’re soon to become an endangered species if the punk band Toe Tag Riot has any say in the matter.  Toe Tag Riot is not just a typical in-your-face club band, it’s made up of zombies who feast only on the worst society has to offer.  And writer Matt Miner and artist Sean Von Gorman provide the backstory to how the band came to their… umm… unusual… flesh feasting ways in Toe Tag Riot Issue #1, in stores today.

Toe Tag Riot excerpt

Sure to be the talk of the week, you’ll want to let your friends know about this new series.  More than four hundred Kickstarter backers pledged nearly $20,000 to get this series off the ground.

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Toe Tag Riot logo

Matt Miner, writer of the ground-breaking series Liberator from Black Mask Studios, which we reviewed previously here and here at borg.com, is back again.  This time he’s launched a Kickstarter project that is now in its final week.  Miner’s latest idea is both cool and crazy.  It’s over-the-top, yet gritty and real.  It’s got zombies taking on real-life villains like no one has done before.  It’s Toe Tag Riot–and it’s crunch time–time to get this project funded so this unique voice can get his book into comic book stores everywhere.

Miner has teamed up with fellow Occupy Comics artist Sean Von Gorman (Pawn Shop, FUBAR, Houdini) and colorist John Rauch (Invincible, Star Trek, Venom), with cover artist Tristan Jones (Hoax Hunters, Ghostbusters, TMNT, Silent Hill) and cover colors by Doug Garbark (In the Dark, Liberator, Prophet) to tell the tale of a punk rock band that turns into zombies and takes on bigots, racists, and misogynists.

Toe Tag Riot band

Here’s the description from the Kickstarter campaign:

Enter Toe Tag Riot:  a struggling streetpunk band of the early 2000s who’re cursed with temporary, recurring zombification that transforms them whenever they perform their music!  Meant to destroy their career, the woman who cursed them clearly understands nothing because Toe Tag Riot’s new monster-punk look only propels the band into punk rock stardom.  Ethical sometimes-zombies that they are, our brave decomposing undead musicians resist their urges to snack on NORMAL human flesh and only make meals of the scummiest, grossest, and vilest scum that litters this Earth!  Finding that the transformation back into regular, filthy, punk rockers is taking longer and longer each time, the band goes on one last cross-country tour, chasing the cure to what ails ’em and hilariously/brutally slaughtering the worst of humanity along the way to an explosive showdown with The Westboro Baptist Church.

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Miss Fury Dynamite Comics

We tried on for size almost every new book that was released from comic book publishers like Dynamite Comics, Dark Horse Comics, IDW Publishing, Archaia/BOOM!, and Image.  We tried to sample the best of all that Marvel and DC Comics had to offer, too, and although we didn’t have enough time to review everything we did try to put out there for your consideration those titles we thought our readers might like to check out, especially those with a sci-fi, fantasy, or retro bent.  Our pull list included issues from Afterlife with Archie to Django Unchained, from Liberator to Larfleezeand from Velvet to The X-Files.  This past month we have reviewed the year-long run of the best of these titles, as we narrowed our selections to 21 of the very best entries in genre entertainment outside of TV and movies, which we revealed here yesterday.  So here are the rest of our picks for the Best of 2013.

Kane Starkiller borg by Mike Mayhew

Best Borg Appearance — Kane Starkiller, The Star Wars.  Borgs showed up everywhere this year, from the lead characters on Almost Human, to Doctor Who, to countless comic book series including Justice League and RoboCop.  Our favorite appearance came from the young mind of George Lucas as he created the original script that would later be edited into the original Star Wars trilogy.  And through Dark Horse Comics’ The Star Wars monthly comic book event we learned one of his best ideas was merged into other roles and one of his best characters entirely cut.   That character was Jedi Kane Starkiller, who would reveal his cyborg chest implants that kept him alive, later to heroically give up this life-saving technology to save his friends.

MissFury001-Cov-Renaud

Best Comic Book Series — Miss Fury, Dynamite Comics.  A uniquely crafted tale, a compelling and seductive superhero, great action panel after panel, sourced in a long-shelved classic character of the Golden Age of comics.  Rob Williams and Jack Herbert’s Miss Fury is a carefully rendered update that rings true to the edgy spirit of the world’s first female superhero.  Beautiful panels set up an ever-changing time and place and pull readers along for the ride.  And stuck-out-of-time Marla Drake and her alter ego Miss Fury could not have looked better, whether carving out her place in the 1940s or as she was teleported into the future.  It’s a series no one should miss.

Clint Barton Hawkeye by Fraction

Best Comic Book Writing – Matt Fraction, Hawkeye.  Last year revealed one of the best comic book series we ever read, focusing on that “other” superhero archer, the second tier Marvel Comics superhero Hawkeye.  Matt Fraction gave us the most interesting set-up and look into the daily life of a superhero who isn’t Captain America or Iron Man.  This year he kept up the momentum in his Hawkeye monthly series, providing stories that challenged readers, each issue taking a different peek into Clint Barton, another costumed superhero called Hawkeye, and their trusty dog.

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Liberator 2 cover

If independent comic book publishing should be about anything, it is the ability to tell stories that aren’t being told anyplace else.  Of course there is no real reason why the big publishers stay away from tough topics, but the fact is they do.  Black Mask Studio’s new series is something different.  If you haven’t yet added Matt Miner’s Liberator to your pull list, with issue #2 arriving at comic book stores this Wednesday you still have time to catch up with this four-part series.

Since Liberator–at least this first limited series–has only four issues to get its story out, it probably should be no surprise that its main vigilante character finds himself partnering with another vigilante saving animals to fulfill his mission in Issue #2.

As with Issue #1, reviewed here at borg.com previously, writer Matt Miner kicks convention aside and opts to tell a story that needs to be told, of secrets kept covered up by mainstream manufacturers, but realities nonetheless.  Miner’s decisive story puts his characters in the their own worst nightmare by the end of the mid-point of his tale.

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Liberator Issue 1 cover

Although the mainstream and critics will likely ignore Black Mask Studio’s new four-issue mini-series Liberator because it deals with politics head-on, it should be on your list of the best comics of 2013.  Fully funded from a successful Kickstarter campaign, with profits going to animal advocacy causes, Liberator puts its money where its mouth is, centering on two realistic heroes approaching their noble and hard-fought causes in different ways.  If you’re tired of the same old superhero vigilante with little but blowing up alien worlds at stake, maybe Liberator’s tantalizing tagline will help pull you in: “Real heroes don’t wear capes… they wear ski masks.”

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