Webcomics in Print: Boys, Rattlers, and Shillings

by Andrea Purcell

Are you glued to your computer screen reading webcomics? Looking for an excuse to get out of the house? Have no fear, your favorite webcomics may already be at your local comic shop! Webcomics are more popular than ever, and comic publishers are taking notice. As an introduction to new creators and fun characters, they are bringing fans to comics and invading comic book stores. From fantasy to comedy with a detour through the strange and surreal, these digital stories are unique looks at what small press creators are making. 

There’s a bit of everything online and we’ve endeavored to bring you the best of what’s available. From superheroes to fantasy, horror and slice of life, webcomics are a unique medium where the only uniting factor is being on the Internet. We’ve listed a few below, but that’s only the tip of the iceberg. There really is something for everyone in the wide world of webcomics.

The start of a new year gives you a chance to start reading some new comics, and January’s Webcomics in Print column is full of great suggestions that you can pre-order at your local comic shop. Fans of Jake Wyatt’s Necropolis and Ariel Ries’ Witchy will not want to miss the first volume of Bird Boy, and Tony Cliff is putting Deliah Dirk back in action as the second collection is ready for voracious readers, plus many more!

Oh, I'll be Free

A beautiful and touching story of adolescence and what it means to belong, Anne Szabla’s Bird Boy is unusual in more ways than one. Dark Horse Comics is collecting the first story arc into Bird Boy: Sword of Mali Mani (JAN160158); starting off the grand adventure of Bali a ten year old, who despite his small statue, is desperate to earn his place among his tribe. After being banned from the ceremony that would validate his adulthood within his tribe, Bali takes his fate into his own hands and sets out into the forbidden forest. Stumbling onto a weapon of legendary power, he must now fight across a treacherous land full of gods, men, and beasts to protect the Sword of Mali Mani. You can read more of Bird Boy at: http://bird-boy.com/


An Indiana Jones like no other, Tony’s Cliff’s lovable ne’er-do-well Deliah Dirk is back again in Delilah Dirk and the King’s Shilling (JAN161483) from First Second. In this chapter Deliah and her loyal friend Selim are up to the usual shenanigans of raiding castles and crossing enemy lines when the English Army catch up with them and accuse them of treason; now she must clear her name or her globetrotting days with Selim are over. Pulling out all the stops to doing whatever it takes; Deliah sneaks, fights, and duels her way to innocence, but she never considered the unthinkable. Will she be able to bring herself to wear a frilly dress and have tea time with her mother or will she accept defeat? Book Two of Delilah Dirk is currently being serialized at: http://www.delilahdirk.com/

Half of the Time We're Gone 

In the tradition of Kamandi, Thundarr the Barbarian, and Flash Gordon, David Gallaher and Steve Ellis team up to tell the tale of Erik Farrell in The Only Living Boy (JAN161608). The first volume is making its way to stores thanks to Papercutz, starting the epic adventures of the last human left on the Patchwork Planet. After running away from home and having lost his memory, he must find a way to survive on a patchwork planet full of monsters and brigands. He quickly finds comrades, and with the help from Morgan (a mermaid warrior) and Thea (a mysterious insectoid princess), he must try to escape the Dreaded Lord Baalikar and the evil Doctor Once, while holding out hope that one day he might find his way home. Visit the Patchwork Planet and read The Only Living Boy online at: http://the-only-living-boy.com/

The Boogyman

A gripping ghost story brought to life through Kickstarter, Jason McNamara and Greg Hinkle’s The Rattler (JAN160628) is getting a second life from Image Comics. It’s been a decade since Stephen Thorn’s fiancée vanished, but he refuses to give up the search and clues are scarce until he hears her voice in the strangest of places. The perfect mystery for fans of True Detective and Making a Murderer, this story skips over the line of sanity and back as Stephen embarks on a journey to save his long-lost love. What he uncovers entangles him in a trap set for him long ago. As bodies pile up and Stephen loses his way out, can he solve this mystery before he disappears as well? You can see the Kickstarter campaign and the teaser trailer for the graphic novel here.

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PREVIEWS Prevue: Cullen Bunn's The Brothers Dracul From AfterShock

“I'm thrilled to be working on BROTHERS DRACUL, a 15th century horror tale that explores the "true" history of the infamous Vlad the Impaler. With this book, we've brought the entire creative team of UNHOLY GRAIL along. I'm working with artist Mirko Colak, colorist Maria Santaolalla, and letterer Simon Bowland once again. We had so much fun telling a horror story with King Arthur as its central figure, we had to get the gang back together for this story, featuring one of the most shocking icons of horrific history!” -Cullen Bunn