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Tuesday, July 6, 2010
My Take On: The 1st Issue of Zombie Ranch - The Comic Book!
Mood:  caffeinated
Topic: Comic Books - New


'My Take' On:

The 1st Issue Of ZOMBIE RANCH

The Comic Book!

From Art Of Dawn

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Above Photo: Clinton Wolf & Dawn Wolf Holding the Preview Issue of Zombie Ranch At the Long Beach Comic Con Expo Held February of 2010.

At the Left: The Front Cover of Zombie Ranch #1!



TODAY'S FEATURE - Blog #3183:

One of the pleasures I get from attending comic cons is to see projects take shape and evolve into full fledged printed comic books.

One of those projects is called 'Zombie Ranch', created and brought to print by Dawn Wolf and her husband Clinton Wolf.

I first came across this project back at the 2009 Long Beach Comic Con (LBCC), and blogged about it and the creators at this archived blog post. To allow YOU to catch up, I'll pause for a few minutes...

Okay?  Well on with the rest of the story.

I saw Clinton and Dawn again, this time at the February 2010 Long Beach Comic Con Expo, an one day con this time that the promoters put on in between the 1st ever LBCC and the upcoming 2nd LBCC during Halloween this upcoming October of 2010.

There, I was updated by both of them as to how the project was coming along.  Their process was to go from web comic to a preview comic, (which I blogged about last time), and to publish a hard copy comic book. Which is what is being featured at the the top left of this current blog post.

Okay...Enough history! That should bring us up to date! 

Having received a copy...What is this 1st issue about? Here's what I found for the promo of this comic book on the publisher's web site and order page:

Zombie Ranch

Story - Clint Wolf & Art- Dawn Wolf
Price: $4.50

"Meet Susannah Zane. She’s a rancher. She raises livestock. Only thing is, her stock isn’t technically “live”. The Great Zombie Plague wiped out a fair portion of civilization, and humans weren’t the only victims of its ravenous hunger. But that was years ago, and where cattle, pigs, and sheep got scarce, practical sorts found a new herd to market: the zombies themselves! Now a crew has come out to film a new reality television series on the subject. To the viewers in the Safe Zones, it might be an eye-opener; but for Suzie and her compadres it’s just another day in the unlife. Welcome to the Zombie Ranch.

Zombie Ranch is a comic about...well...Ranching Zombies.

Issue #1 collects the first 23 pages of the webcomic, representing the entirety of our first story arc, and including a foreword and afterword from Clint. The Special Edition is a signed copy of the same, plus several extra goodies as detailed in the store.

Don’t worry, the past, present, and future comics of Zombie Ranch will continue to be free of charge here on the web, and we highly appreciate every last one of you that drops by to read. But hey, now we’ve also got something to set out at our next convention table, and you guys have your option if you’re the type who really likes something to flip through for the true comic experience. Regardless of your preferences, thanks for your support!"

So what's 'My Take' on this first issue? Considering I've already read and blogged about the earlier Preview Comic? 

Front Cover:  The coloring of this is what would attract my eyes if I were to see it at my LCBS, which it won't be at unfortunately.  The striking use of the reddish and white colors make the main character jump out at you when first seeing it. The casual browser will get immediately that it is a 'ranch', with a cowgirl, and the arm hanging out of the wagon is just a 'touch' of what is in store for the reader!

Inside Front Cover: Now this is HOW to present a new offering to a new audience! A billboard with the concept and the creators and a mini-history as to how this storyline came about. Plus it is good to know that this concept started off as a 'webcomic'...

Splash Page: I said in the above that this concept was first presented as a 'webcomic'.  Which is why there is a lack of a 'true' splash page in this presentation.  Okay, I'll go along with that...

Interior Pages:  After the 'foreword' there are 23 pages of art and story.  The style of the art is one that I like for this genre of story being told.  As frequent readers of this blog know by now...I'm not overly fond of the current flood of zombies, vampires & werewolves stories being foisted on the public.  

However, this concept is tasteful, and with the artwork and coloring is actually a more than just interesting 'read'.

That's because 'Susannah Zane', the main character is 'fleshed out' in this storyline.  (Excuse the pun!).  You see, Susannah is a rancher.  She raises livestock.  Only thing is, as said in the concept pages: "Her stock isn't technically 'live'!".

I'll let you read more on this for yourself, by giving you the links to the web site for the webcomic and also to where to order this publication in a bit.

At the end of the storyline, there is an 'afterword' from Clint, which kind of sums it up for now.  Which is good that it was printed there.

The inside back cover was the usual Ka-Blam advertisement page, which the printer takes as being the POD publisher. A fair enough trade IMO. It's even better though, that Clint & Dawn have the ad page as the inside back cover, instead of the back cover, which most creators opt for.

The back cover had all of the right ingredients to help the casual browser make up their mind to at least thumb through the pages if seeing this at their LCBS. Really good promo piece, with just enough illustration, and copy text.

So, after all of the above presentation..What is 'My Take' on this comic book issue?

Well...First of all, I was pleased to see this concept blossom into a hard copy 'floppy' format of comic book.  I had missed the earlier conception of the webcomic, and only found this via the 'preview comic' stage at the 1st LBCC in 2009.  I'm glad that Clint and Dawn have gone through to hard copy full fledged 'floppy' comic book format.

Even though Tina and myself have now bought a 'Droid', and both have 'played' with the iPad, I know that I personally am a 'tactile' reader.  So I'm glad that Clint & Dawn have brought out this 'floppy' hard copy format.  It takes a firm belief in your creation to go to this new level.

Leaving my own somewhat influenced thoughts aside for a moment, after seeing both creators a couple of times in person now, it's time to give this hard copy format of 'Zombie Ranch' #1 a 'comic book grade'. 

I would grade this 1st issue of 'Zombie Ranch' a 'Very Fine / Near Mint' (VF/NM) 9.0 out of the 10.0 Grading Scale. That's pretty darn good for a first issue! 

So in the meantime, where can YOU pick up a copy? Here's what I have been told.  If you see Dawn & Clint in person at the upcoming Long Beach Comic Con in October, they should have additional copies.  If YOU can't wait that long, and really you shouldn't...Then check out their website for the Special Edition package of this comic, or order the regular edition from Indy Planet via this link.

Additionally, since I am a BIG user of Facebook, I want to mention the Zombie Ranch Facebook Fan Page that YOU can 'Like' and be interactive with the creators and other fans.  

My thanks to Clint Wolf for bringing this brand new 1st issue in hard copy comic book format to my attention!

AND My thanks again to all of YOU reading this blog and our archived blog posts, now over the 3,180 total posts in number!

~ Michael D Hamersky @ ComicBookCollectorsBlog.com

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Posted by makeitsomarketing at 4:07 AM PDT
Updated: Tuesday, July 6, 2010 5:45 AM PDT
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