The Deep Cartoon Trailer Premiere

Cool, arty things happen in Melbourne. Cool things also happen in my hometown of Perth, but I hope we get to see this trailer online soon.


His recent publications sit atop the bestseller lists on Amazon and iBooks among others, and he has written adventures for Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Luke Skywalker and Boba Fett — however, for Melbourne born and bred comic book author,Tom Taylor, nothing excites him more than crafting tales of the Nekton family in his creator-owned graphic novel series, The Deep. 

After receiving the 2012 Aurealis Award for ‘Best Graphic Novel’ for the first volume of The Deep series, Here Be Dragons, Taylor and artist James Brouwer return to the seas for the second volume, The Vanishing Island, published by Gestalt Comics.

The Vanishing Island
 continues the adventures of a multi-ethnic family of daring Aquanauts who live on a submarine — and will receive its official launch on the 23rd March 2013 at Melbourne’s All-Star Comics.

Written by award-winning writer Tom Taylor (DC’s InjusticeStar Wars: AdventuresStar Wars: Blood Ties) and illustrated by the incredible James Brouwer (Justice League Beyond), The Vanishing Island sees the Nektons, a family who have been exploring the seas for generations, investigate an island that was “completely not hit by a tsunami.”

Book Launch Details
The launch of The Vanishing Island will be held at All Star Comics Melbourne, Level 1, 410 Lonsdale St, Melbourne, on Saturday the 23rd March 2013, from 1pm-3pm, and will feature the first public preview of the upcoming TV series based on The Deep graphic novels.

Upcoming Animated TV Series

A new CGI series is in the works based on the The Deep graphic novels, with Paris-based animation studio Technicolor developing and producing 26 half-hour episodes of The Deep targeting viewers 6 years and up.
The Deep: The Vanishing Island and the previous volume in the series, Here Be Dragons, are distributed by Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand, with an RRP of $19.95 aud.


Extra Sequential Podcast #53-The Deep & Century: 1969

50 mins. We focus on two very different comics this week, in Gestalt’s The Deep and Top Shelf’s League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Century: 1969. Also, comic shops in Sydney, ping pong balls, The Rock and more.


You can email us at kris (at)extrasequential(dot)com and befriend us on the NEW ES Facebook page.

4:30 NEWS

The Annotated Sandman Volume 1

The White Rabbit Batman villainess

Robert Crumb cancels his Australian visit

Tanarus, the new Thor


From Tom Taylor and James Brouwer comes this fun all-ages adventure about the Nekton family.

Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill bring us the latest, and certainly not all-ages, instalment in their increasingly strange League of Extraordinary Gentlemen series.

The Deep: Here Be Dragons Review

The Deep from Tom Taylor and James Brouwer is now out from Gestalt Publishing. Catch my review of this all-ages adventure here at Broken Frontier. In short – it’s awesome and you should get it.

You can catch my interview with Taylor here.


Rombies and The Example Now Available

Writer Tom Taylor has been getting deserved attention for his work on his DC/Wildstorm (The Authority) and Dark Horse (Star Wars: Invasion) books, but his work on indie publisher Gestalt’s books are also available to the wider world. Us Australian readers have been privvy to Gestalt’s fine work for a while now, but as of tomorrow these two works will be available at a comic shop near you.

Both are written by Taylor, with art on Rombies by Skye Ogden and The Example by his Invasion artist Colin Wilson. Rombies, which is set to become a new ongoing, is about Roman zombies and is as awesome as it sounds. Think Spartacus by George Romero.

The Example is based on Taylor’s play and centres on the only two people waiting at a train station with their curious and fearful eyes on a lonely suitcase.

If you happen to see these two books at your LCS this week, pick them up. They’re cheap, done-in-one tales that won’t disappoint.

This Week’s Winners

Star Wars: Blood Ties #1. Aussie writer Tom Taylor (The Authority) is working his way through as many Star Wars characters as possible, with the last few months spent on his The Will of Darth Vader one-shot and second Invasion mini-series. Now he takes on the Fetts, and thankfully gives the father/son pair the air of menace that was missing from the second prequel film. With the debut of a new series called Blood Ties which will, “explore the familial links between some of Star War’s most famous, and infamous, characters,” Jango and son Boba are  a good place to start.

It opens with some unusual bonding involving Jango sending his clone/son to retrieve a tooth as big as himself from a hulking monster to teach Boba to fear nothing, before the pair are recruited by Count Dooku for a secret mission, which involves a twist at this issue’s conclusion. The relationship between the pair wasn’t explored as it could’ve been in Episode II, but Taylor and artist Chris Scalf redeem the bounty hunters here. Jango has a fierce reputation, as a rookie traffic controller learns the hard way.

Scalf’s work is something you might expect to see in the pages of  a lush Radical book. He nails the looks of the Jango, Boba and Dooku actors from the prequel films with a painterly look more common in the fantasy genre, but one that works splendidly in these pages.

The Darkness: Four Horsemen is written by David Hine (Detective Comics) with art by Jeff Wamester and is a past-set tale about Mob hitman Jackie Estacado. One of Top Cow’s best characters, Jackie received supernatural powers on his 21st birthday, giving him control over impish demons from another dimension, as well as tendrils and a mean costume/suit of armour. Here he’s recruited by an elderly head of a mob family to seek revenge on 4 bikers that killed his brothers 35 years ago. Now they’re back and causing epic chaos in a small town.  The four toughs haven’t aged and now seem to embody the four horsemen of the apocalypse. It’s a dark, bloody story, so don’t be fooled by the slightly exaggerated artwork.

Superman: Secret Origin #6. Finally this last issue has arrived. Geoff Johns and Gary Frank make for a formidable duo and their love of the Man of Steel’s history is written and drawn on every page. With Supes himself looking just like Christopher Reeve and a firm grasp of storytelling with a hint of nostalgia that never overpowers the tale’s structure (something Superman Returns never managed), it’s a treat to read. Superman didn’t really need yet another origin recap/retcon/whatever, but my jaded cynicism has been swept away with each issue of this great series. A battle with Metallo (in which Superman cleverly melts a drain cover over his kryptonite heart), the revelation to Lois and co. that he’s an alien and not human and the pitch perfect characterisation of the jealous Lex Luthor all help this issue fall in the winner category. Nice touches like pigeons flying off the freshly spinning Daily Planet globe and the fact that Metropolis’ citizens don’t look where they’re going because their eyes are skyward looking for the Man of Steel reveal Johns’ creativity as a writer.

Rombies Review

This is one of those books that I read when it first came out (in this case, December) and then meant to immediately tell the world how awesome it is, before I became distracted, which is a common occurrence these days, happily thanks to Broken Frontier and Extra Sequential. Seeing as this little gem, and the rest of Gestalt’s catalogue is now becoming available internationally through Diamond, now’s the time to give it a rotting thumbs up.

Rombies is a black and white one-shot from local (to me in Perth, Western Australia anyway) publisher Gestalt. The last year has since the company put out some impressive books, including not only this one, but also the Digested series and Justin Randall’s Changing Ways.

It’s written by Tom Taylor, who’s on a roll at the moment writing various Star Wars titles for Dark Horse including the excellent Invasion, and The Authority for DC/Wildstorm. Handsome/gruesome art is supplied by Skye Ogden (Gestalt’s silent Vowels book). Effectively a 24 page #0 issue, Rombies starts the barbaric tale contained within, but also the series (more issues are on the way. Yay!) with a bang, or rather, a slice to the abdomen. Opening on a gladiatorial arena (hence the title, from Roman zombies) filled with bloodthirsty spectators, and desperate men we see the victor standing over his fallen opponent. One glance up at the Emperor, who gives the thumbs down, and it’s a quick finish to the fighter at his feet. Or is it? Um…no. The rules of life and death are quickly rattled in the next few moments as the dead loser gets up ready for round two. He’s soon joined by all the other “corpses” scattered on the dusty floor, with the fact that they’re missing limbs or have an axe in their face existing as a mere nuisance.

This is a great intro to the book, and Taylor does a firm job of skirting expectations from readers who’ve had their fair barrage of both zombies and gladiators in recent years. Combing the two is the best thing since Mr. Mocha put chocolate and coffee in the same cup.

There’s then a wise chase involving a determined undead horde, big cats and an understandably overwhelmed boy. Skye Ogden’s art reminds me somewhat of Kyle Hotz, with his flowing lines and organic approach. He paces things very well, and knows how to make the page have a real impact, with an early double page spread and large panels being used superbly. The ending is, for lack of a better word, a hoot. It made me laugh with its bold, yet dark, approach.

It’s a quick read sure, but one that will make most hunger for more. Thankfully, that’s exactly what we’re getting, and the teaser image below makes me salivate at the prospect of Taylor and Ogden telling their zombie epic through the ages. Really the possibilities are endless. Zombies in Napoleon’s army? An undead Hitler? Elvis rising from Graceland, hungry for impersonator flesh in Las Vegas? They could go anywhere.

Pick this book up now, or in August if you’re not in Oz. It’s daring, entertaining, and cheap! You could also see your own face as a Rombies extra if you’re keen to view how others see you before your morning coffee. Or mocha.

Tom Taylor on The Authority

I’ll meet Tom Taylor for the first time tomorrow night (at a pub of all places, which is a very unusual destination for me) but it’s been great to see his rise amongst the ranks of new comics scribes getting their due, especially as he’s a rare Aussie writing big-time American comics. From Star Wars: Invasion to his just announced job as new writer on The Authority from DC/Wildstorm. I didn’t see that one coming, but it makes perfect sense. As Tom tells it, following Star Wars with The Authority is like “thinking you’re getting your first car and, instead, being handed the keys to a flying battleship that runs on the fury and the sex drive of one hundred caged dragons.”

Here’s the official solicitation info for his first, May releasing ish of The Authority.

On sale MAY 5
32 pg, FC, $2.99 US
Written by TOM TAYLOR

Acclaimed writer Tom Taylor (Star Wars: Invasion) takes the helm for a 4-issue arc. The Authority’s journey through space on The Carrier’s unknown mission continues. Their mysterious voyage takes an even more terrifying twist than anything they’ve experienced so far when they discover stowaways of the worst possible kind. Facing a hideous mutiny by overwhelming odds, only one person can possibly save them. But will this reluctant hero break his own vow and return to action?

Tom Taylor Signing

If you don’t manage to catch Star Wars: Invasion writer Tom Taylor at Thursday’s celebration of 5 years of Gestalt, then you can catch him on Saturday at Comic Zone. Man, that’s an awkward sentence. Basically, Saturday Feb 20 (the day after my birthday!) Taylor will be signing Invasion, Star Wars Adventures, and his Gestalt books, such as Flinch and the new Rombies. Rombies artist Skye Ogden will be there too, signing his great silent book, Vowels (also from Gestalt). Comic Zone is at 572 Hay Street, Perth and Taylor will be there from 11am. His new DC/Wildstorm project should be public by then too, so we can watch him try to avoid our fanboy questions. Should be fun!

Star Wars: Knight Errant and New Invasion

Press release from Dark Horse below about a new Star Wars series from writer John Jackson Miller (Knights of the Old Republic), and under that – solicitation info regarding Tom Taylor’s and Colin Wilson’s continuing Invasion series which kicks off in May. Yay!



Coming off the heels of penning the breakout hit Mass Effect: Redemption and the gripping finale of Knights of the Old Republic, writer John Jackson Miller introduces us to Kerra Holt, a young Jedi who’s about to realize that her role in the galaxy is far more important, and vastly different, than she could have ever imagined.

Set one thousand years before Episode I, in a time referred to as the “Dark Age of the Republic,” this story takes place in an era when the Sith were legion and the Republic was strained to the breaking point, leaving large swaths of the galaxy with no one to turn to. This pivotal time in the history of Star Wars has been largely unexplored, until now.

Additionally, for the first time ever, the writer of this new comics series will also be authoring a novel for Del Rey Books, set in the same era and involving the same cast of characters in an all-new adventure. It’s going to be a unique event for Star Wars, and one that will give fans a whole new perspective on the galaxy.

“There’s such wonderful chaos going on in the galaxy in this period,” said writer John Jackson Miller. “More than a generation before Darth Bane introduced the Rule of Two, Sith Lords are colliding not just with the Republic, but with each other. Kerra’s going to find that good intentions just may not be enough in a galaxy gone mad! This is a wide-open area to explore, and I’m thrilled that Dark Horse and Del Rey have given me this opportunity to do so.”

“With John writing both the comics and the novel, Knight Errant will be a Star Wars story on a scale we’ve never undertaken before,” said comic-series editor Dave Marshall. “This will be a first-of-its-kind opportunity to introduce the Expanded Universe of the Dark Horse comics to the fans of the Del Rey novels and vice versa!”

With more news in the coming months, look for Star Wars: Knight Errant to arrive on shelves later this fall!

Tom Taylor (W), Colin Wilson (A), Wes Dzioba (C), and Jo Chen (Cover)
On sale May 26
FC, 40 pages

The Yuuzhan Vong invasion spreads death and destruction across the galaxy, leaving behind ravaged worlds with little hope of survival . . . Artorias, the homeworld of the Galfridian family lay in the path of the Yuuzhan Vong armada—and now, though separated, Finn, Kaye, Nina, and Caled work to fight the invaders with the hope that one day they will again be together on their peaceful planet.
Finn studies at the Jedi temple with Luke Skywalker and the grown Jedi children of Han Solo and Princess Leia! Kaye and Nina use a Yuuzhan Vong slave ship to attack their former captors! Caled raises forces on Artorias—not knowing the danger from one of his trusted allies!
• A new era in Star Wars comics!
Luke Skywalker’s galaxy under siege!

Star Wars: Invasion TPB

Thanks to writer Tom Taylor’s site, the cover of the collection of the excellent Star Wars: Invasion series from Dark Horse is now up. You may recognise Jo Chen’s great cover from the first issue of the series, but also from the cover of our Arcana mag, in which we have an insightful and amusing interview with Taylor. The official solicitation info of the TPB is below. Congrats must also go to Taylor, as not only is his Rombies one-shot now out from Gestalt (get it now, it’s cheap!) but he’s also working on something special for DC/Wildstorm.

Tom Taylor (W), Colin Wilson (A), Wes Dzioba (C), and Jo Chen (Cover)
On sale May 12
FC, 144 pages
TPB, 7″ x 10″

Twenty-five years after the Battle of Yavin, Luke Skywalker and the galaxy are facing their first real threat since the Sith were defeated: an invasion of hostile warriors from another galaxy—the Yuuzhan Vong!

The peaceful planet of Artorias is in the path of the alien armada. Finn Galfridian, his spunky sister Kaye, and their parents find themselves separated and fighting for their lives when the surprise invasion occurs. But their ordeal is just beginning . . .

• Collects Star Wars: Invasion #1–#5 and #0.

• This new series ties in to—and fits between—the nineteen novels of Del Rey’s New Jedi Order series.

• Features some of the first visual representations of this turbulent era of the Star Wars saga, including Han and Leia’s Jedi children!

Gestalt Comics Sale

West Aussie publisher-done-good, Gestalt is having a sale. Now embrace capitalism and visit their site for some grand bargains! Rombies is out on December 15 and this black and white one-shot is filled with a great premise – zombies in the Roman empire. Plus it’s written by man-on-the-rise Tom Taylor from Star Wars: Invasion. I’ve seen a few pages and it really does look great.

For those that read Gestalt’s recent Flinch anthology, you’ll know Bobby N’s story was the highlight, and now you can pick up both of his volumes of Digested for only $13. Other recommendations would definitely be the 24 page The Example by Taylor and his Invasion artist, Colin Wilson. Yes, it’s just 2 people, a briefcase and an empty train station, but this is a widely praised suspense filled tale for a reason. A must buy.

There’s a few other goodies available too, and any would make excellent stocking stuffers. Christmas is closer than you think!

Last Week’s Winners

Star Wars: Invasion #5 CvrStar Wars: Invasion #5 by writer Tom Taylor and artist Colin Wilson. You’d think Dark Horse would be running out of steam with the Star Wars franchise by now, with series detailing all manner of eras and characters. Taylor and Wilson proved with this series that there’s still life left in it yet. By focusing on the new Galfrdian family and the larger assault by the vile, yet popular, Yuuzhang Vong race the pair have managed to knit new and intriguing elements into Lucas’ favourite playground. This last issue (for now, as the series will begin again early next year) has been a satisfying conclusion (of sorts) to this arc. Taylor has handled the older SW characters such as Luke, Leia and Han wisely, but not with kid gloves. It never feels like they’re on the page just to appear to traditional SW fans. However, with Finn and co. on board Taylor and Wilson show that the SW world is a varied beast that still has room for new concepts and characters that could very well live as long as their famous screen counterparts.

Psylocke #1 by Chris Yost and Harvey Talibao. Back in the day (ie, the mid ’90s) pretty much every X-character had their own mini-series without any real reason (apart from the obvious cynical one – $) and I thought this would be the same. It was, but I still enjoyed it. I’ve always had a mild fanboy crush for Psylocke. She is a hot Eurasian ninja after all. This first issue of four, is a great intro, or re-intro, to the character. It begins with a fight on the island of Utopia, before a flight to Japan with Wolverine, which leads to a run-in with the local authorities, a splendid bout with a few Hand ninja in a cemetery and a declaration of vengeance. Pyslocke’s narration offers the odd quip about souls and identities, which is fitting enough with an origin as complex as Betsy’s, and also included is the first part of a back-up series focusing on Cable and the young Hope. This is pencilled by Steve Dillon, which would be great in anything but a superhero book. It just doesn’t seem the same when he’s out of the more “realistic” worlds of Punisher and Preacher.

Pope Hats #1 CvrPope Hats #1 by Ethan Rilly. Every month when I do my ordering from Previews, I make sure to support at least one indie title. That was the reasoning behind this purchase. They’re not always nice surprises, but you got to try. There was a slight feeling that I was missing something here, like beginning with Season 2 of a TV series, but overall it was enjoyable and funny. Centering on a young woman named Frances, her drink-loving friend Vickie and an odd ghost that only Frances can see who offers random statements (“Sometimes I go into the woods and carry  a bear on my back.”) it makes for a light, and amusing tale. Essentially filled with scenes of conversation with dialogue that Kevin Smith would be proud of the black and white approach to the art is just as simple as the narrative, but it all hangs together well and seems like the kind of witty and off-beat story that you’d find in the arty section of your local Blockbuster.

This Week’s Winners

Sweet Tooth #1 CoverJeff Lemire’s Sweet Tooth#1. Worth much more than the $1 cover price, this debut ish from Vertigo is equal amounts enchanting and intriguing. Writer/artist Lemire mentions in the On The Ledge column that a friend of his described it as “Bambi meets Mad Max.” That’s not a bad way of putting it, though it’s still too early to see those references yet. Lemire is one of the new wave of indie creators making a splash and getting noticed. His Essex County trilogy from Top Shelf chronicled various inhabitants of a small town with great realism and warmth. He brings that same edge to Sweet Tooth, but with more fantasy than his usual work. We are introduced to Gus, a boy with antlers living with his dying father. Gus has never left his home and the area around it and knows no-one but his ailing Dad. Gus is one of the last few human/animal hybrids who came into existence after a mysterious pandemic 10 years ago. This is an ongoing series and Lemire has plenty of time to build upon this premise. It hooked me more than I thought it would. Lemire’s art seems slightly more refined here. The thick, black sketchy style of his previous work is still obvious, but there are rare places where faces appear odd. Jose Villarrubia’s colours sit slightly uneasily, but maybe that’s because I’m not used to seeing Lemire’s work in colour. There’s also a 7 page preview of October’s Peter and Max Fables novel from Bill Willingham. Sweet Tooth, like The Unwritten before it is yet another bold move from Vertigo, and Lemire is conducting a unique promo for the series.

Justice League: Cry For Justice #3. There’s still a few issues with this series, namely writer James Robinson’s occasional missteps with out of character dialogue, particulary with Hal Jordan, but with the build up towards the team’s formation, and the big reveal of the baddie, ie, Prometheus, it ticks a few boxes. Prometheus was always one of the great JLA baddies when Grant Morrison reinvigorated the JLA over a decade ago. Mauro Cascioli’s art is splendid and his ferocious depictions of action, such as Starman’s and Congorilla’s aerial assault are the highlights. Robinson’s extra pages on the origin of Prometheus and why he chose the “anti-Batman” give fanboys great insights too.

Star Wars: Invasion #3 CoverStar Wars: Invasion #3. The thing that’s immediately apparent from this new SW mini-series is Colin Wilson’s art. It’s the kind that you don’t really see in mainstream American comics, and it fits with the high drama and action of Star Wars beautifully. Tom Taylor keeps things fresh, knowing that it’s probably a mix of fans of the New Jedi Order series of novels and people who want to see Luke Skywalker do his thing again that are reading this title. Anyone who has read the books in which the alien species known as Yuuzhan Vong come to conquer will be relieved that they translate so well to sequential art. Taylor gives enough info about the Vong for curious readers, and starts to make serious strides in showcasing the menace of the creepy race. Plus, in the few pages that reveal Skywalker’s relationship with the apprentice Finn Galfridian, Taylor lays hints that he’s going slightly beyond the typical SW mentor/protege arc that we’ve seen many times before. Hopefully the characters shown here will continue in some form with Dark Horse after Invasion wraps.

SW: Invasion #3

Star Wars: Invasion #1 Review

Star Wars: Invasion #1Now I’ve probably read less than forty novels in my life, but my younger brother is a huge Star Wars fan and for the last few years has made a point to read every SW novel he can get his hands on. I too share his enthusiasm for George Lucas’ greatest work, but haven’t delved as deeply in to the Expanded Universe that broadens the scope of events seen in the films. I have read a few of the novels which centre on the vile Yuzzhan Vong however and have loved them. This alien race which despises technology and is immune to the ways of the Force is one of the best creations in the Star Wars world. It’s not easy to create credible enemies for the powerful Jedi, but as I read of the Vong I was instantly scared and sickened. I always thought they’d make an awesome enemy in a film, game or comic adaptation. And here we are. Dark Horse knows how to handle licensed properties like no-one else. They’ve taken Star Wars in to bold new places and this latest mini-series looks to continue that tradition. As editor Randy Stradley mentions in the afteword, now is the time for this comic.

Written by fellow Aussie, and playwright Tom Taylor Invasion is a five issue mini that follows the Yuuzhan Vong as they focus their horrific marauding ways upon the peaceful Artorian people. Obviously, the Artorians have no idea what’s in store for them, and no real defence when the attack comes. Most are carried away as terrified captives by the brutal scaly creatures, while the king (a veteran of the Battle of Hoth, as seen in The Empire Strikes Back) and his risk-taking son Finn  do their best to save their planet. The focus on this 40 pager is not the Vong. In fact they hardly appear, but when they do they look as horrific as I imagined when reading the books.

This series is set 25 years after the first Star Wars film amid the New Jedi Order era, in which an older Luke Skywalker is gathering fresh Jedi recruits. He appears here and reminds all that he is one bad dude when he wants to be. So far it doesn’t appear to tie in to any of the Vong novels so I’m curious as to where Taylor and artist  Colin Wilson (2000 AD) take this. The desperation is laid on thick with the quick battle on Artoria and Skywalker shows interest in training Finn as a Jedi, which is something that holds promise.

Wilson’s art is detailed, with a flair for costume design and page design, particularly in the numerous fights. There have been so many alien races and planets seen in SW over the decades, but Wilson does an admirable job in the few pages he’s given to flesh out the people of Artoria with a Middle Eastern flavour. Wes Dzioba’s colours add a great richness and depth to Wilson’s pencils, making the pages pop with  variety.

It’s an intriguing set up and I hope to see more of the Vong’s harsh religion and culture in the following issues, as that’s one of the things that make them so unique. With the novels, there’s some great source material to mine from. I look forward to this being a dark and ominous series, and hopefully the rest of the Skywalker clan will show up at some point.

You can see a preview of this ish here. There’s also an original 16 page preview on by the same creative team set before this first issue.

Star Wars: Invasion #1 p8

  • Calendar

    • March 2023
      M T W T F S S
  • Search