Wednesday, December 28, 2011

#065 - Rollin' Crits

With very little news to report/comment on, we are left to our own devices. This is what happens. You can see similar results by going to read our webcomic with Brent Hibbard! Twitter has updates about almost all of the stuff we're doing at any given time. Email and get longer responses from us. Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff are our one true love. Tumblr has information about comics in visual form. Comic Booked is our one true love (shhhh). Check out our exclusive content over on Why Not Indie? You can download MP3s of us from Fan Off and also through iTunes!

Episode #065:
• Intro - Something happens and you get in-depth discussions of Michael Jackson and the trials he experienced, whether we would/could play any tabletop role-playing game, and then we talk about Discount Comic Book Services!
• Topic Thunder - Two movie discussions, one that actually ties to comics (and whether it ruins your childhood or not), and then we talk about the leak of Watchmen prequel material from DC. You know, because everyone at DC hates each other and you too.
• Top 5 - Two Top Fives! The Top 5 Character Names For Our Hypothetical Dungeons and Dragon session, and Top 5 Weapons We Would Give Our Characters! You get a very interesting cocktail of serious and ridiculous.
• Outro - This is all a blur. We'll be back on January 11 of 2012.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

#064 - Accidentally Professional

MAN! We want you all to read a bunch of comics. Please listen to us. You don't have to start here, but eventually you should go read our webcomic with Brent Hibbard! Twitter is alive with activity from day to day. Email and pretend you're our long lost love  Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff makes life easier. Tumblr sure does look perdy. Comic Booked will help you reach that shelf you can't. Check out our exclusive content over on Why Not Indie? You can download MP3s of us from Fan Off and also through iTunes!

Episode #064:
• Intro -  Welcome to show #whatever this is, where we talk about Discount Comic Book Services!
• Topic Thunder - A man goes to jail and for distributing a leaked movie; Bane talks and the internet births a million comedians; and you're an inker? You're fired.
• You Should Read This - In a special extended version of the segment we not only have listener Brandon Murphy on, but Bryan Daggett as well. There are many books discussed! Go check out Why Not Indie? for some special Hideous Energy content, as well as other info about indie comics. Thanks to Brandon Murphy for listening and spending his birthday with us!
• The Listen Bitches - Flying in the face of felony charges, Austin picks "Look At Miss Ohio" by Gillian Welch, and David picks "Y Control" by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Becky Cloonan Interview!

Whatever time it is, right now Becky Cloonan is drawing. If you haven't heard of her or seen her work, then it is a good possibility you can't see or hear. We were very lucky to get an interview with her, and here it is! Tell us who you want us to interview (or try to) on our Twitter. Please read our webcomic with artist Brent Hibbard; the name of the comic is Super Cute. Facebook will let you show your friends and family (fake or real) that you like us! Fan Off has us and other podcasts, so go there! Tumblr thinks you are, just, so pretty. Comic Booked also has us and other podcasts, so again, go there. You can download this and other interviews through iTunes, as well as through Fan Off! Thank you for listening.

We talk with Becky Cloonan about where she was born and why she chose said place as her birthplace; she gives her opinion on the women in comics debate, and talks about how the Tokyopop shutdown affected her. After all of that we discuss fingernail soup, her desire to be a soulless killing machine, and how she sees herself as Peter Lorre.

Go check out her blog, Ink and Thunder, and follow her on Twitter. Most importantly though, swing by her online shop and pick up a copy of Wolves, or anything else she is selling. She's a fantastic artist and a cool person, so you should double-support her art! Thanks to Becky for taking the time to talk to us, and you for listening!

Movie versions of Austin Wilson and David Hopkins would probably be played by Sinead O'connor and Cybil Shepard, respectively. This interview runs 1:04:24 and will make you smile. Please give our other shows and interviews a listen, and check out our webcomic!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

#063 - It's a Debate and Slap Fight Kinda' Day

Oh boy, you get misogyny and confetti and waving brown bears and slap fights! Listen and you will also feel like you're being hit by confetti! Go read our webcomic with Brent Hibbard! The name of the comic is Super Cute. Twitter has over 5,000 tweets by us. Yes. Write to us through and you will most likely get mentioned on-air.  Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff are gorgeous human beings. Tumblr just looks so good. Comic Booked holds us up when we feel as if we can't go on. Check out our exclusive content over on Why Not Indie? You can download MP3s of us from Fan Off and also through iTunes!

Episode #063:
• Intro -  Celebrating our idiosyncrasies, as we do Discount Comic Book Services!
• Topic Thunder -Brian K. Vaughan hates David because he's a negative jerk; J. Michael Straczynski and Stephen Wacker have a slap fight; and Bleeding Cool predicts the future that Mark Millar kind of predicts? We talk about that. It's better than it sounds.
• Read 'Em (it) and Weep - We discuss the first issue of "The Defenders" by Matt Fraction and the family Dodson. Theeeeennnn...we talk more about it. We talk about it a lot.
• Outro - Come baaaaaaaaaa...

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

#062 - The World's Best Cooking Podcast

Today we foster gender confusion, discuss comics for somewhere around an hour, then spoil an unreleased movie! Yeah! Check out  our webcomic with Brent Hibbard, Super Cute. Twitter is constantly alight with our musings. Emailing us through is an easy way to get yourself mentioned on the show.  Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff never gives up on us. Tumblr loves us. Comic Booked has us and other podcasts! Check out our exclusive content over on Why Not Indie? You can download MP3s of us from Fan Off and also through iTunes!
Episode #062:
• Intro -  Ohhh yeah, fostering gender confusion and discussing deals from Discount Comic Book Services!
• Topic Thunder - Marvel's next big event garners a TON of conversation; Bendis leaves "Avengers;" Alan Moore is mean again; and Dark Horse brings digital comics to you and some people thought that was bad.
• The Flicker Shows - David spoils an entire movie that hasn't even been released yet. Seriously. He read the entire script, and then spoils the whole thing.
• Outro - Seeeeee yaaaa'...byyyyeeee...

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

#061 - Smoking Leads To Coughing

If we aren't reviewing comics then we're probably reviewing Jurassic Park and how it would be different if the characters smoked raptor bones. Yeah. Go read our webcomic with Brent Hibbard, Super Cute. Through Twitter you can talk right to us wherever we are. Emailing us through is such a good idea, just such a good idea.  Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff never gives up on us. Tumblr is so freaking pretty. Comic Booked has more info on comics! Check out our exclusive content over on Why Not Indie? You can download MP3s of us from Fan Off and also through iTunes!

Episode #061:
• Intro -  Giving up your head space is required for listening to us. Go check out Discount Comic Book Services to get your comics for AT LEAST 35% off.
• Read 'Em and Weep -Fantastic Four #600 by Jonathan Hickman and All of the Artists; Invincible #85 by Robert Kirkman and Cory Walker; Secret Avengers #19 by Warren Ellis and Michael Lark, Stefano Gaudiano, and Brian Thies; and Jurassic Park.
• You Should Read This - Detective Comics: Black Mirror, by Scott Snyder, Jock, and Francesco Francavilla; and The Brave and the Bold collection, by J. Michael Straczynski and various artists!
• Top 5 - Weird Things We Would Smoke
• The Listen Bitches - David chooses "A Real Hero" by College; Austin picks "Party People" by Winter Gloves.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson have found themselves, and can't believe they were ever lost. This episode runs 1:14:26. Please read our webcomic, Super Cute ( Download more Hideous Energy episodes through iTunes or if you enjoy this kind of thing.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

#060 - You Deal the Hand You're Dealt

Today we test the plausibility of cough syrup poisoning, and whether or not we're capable of loving something too much. Go read our webcomic with Brent Hibbard, Super Cute. On Twitter we're all having a great time. Emailing us through is one of your shots at hearing about yourself on the internet.  Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff loves us for some reason, so show them some love. Tumblr will always love you. Comic Booked has a ton of content for you to peruse, so go, peruse! Check out our exclusive content over on Why Not Indie? At the end of the day iTunes will be there for you.

Episode #060:
• Intro -  David makes outrageous claims from his sick/deathbed, and then we put them to the test. Also Discount Comic Book Services gets you your comics at a phenomenal discount - from 35% and up - so going there is a moral imperative.
• Topic Thunder - SciFi wants to make a Booster Gold TV show; some new details about the Batman movie; Marvel kills books and giggles at their plight; DC...seriously? Good lord; and Brian K. Vaughan and Marcos Martin are going to make us happy.
• Critical Thinking - So what happens when something you love becomes something you loved? Trust us, there are plenty of curse words and crazy things to offset the deep thinking.
• Read 'Em and Weep - Friend and listener Ryan Prinkey stops by to chat about two things you should read! Captain America: The Captain, and JSA: The Golden Age.

• Outro - We would totally dance if you asked us to dance.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson say what they mean and mean what they say. This episode runs 1:24:59. Please read our webcomic, Super Cute ( Download more Hideous Energy episodes through iTunes or if you enjoy this kind of thing.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

#059 - Fight Like Raptors, Love Like the Punisher

If you've ever fought like a raptor then this episode will probably make sense to you. Also, if you've ever thought about the Punisher's mental and emotional state. Go read our webcomic with Brent Hibbard, Super Cute. On Twitter we're all having a great time. Emailing us through is one of your shots at hearing about yourself on the internet.  Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff loves us for some reason, so show them some love. Tumblr will always love you. Comic Booked has a ton of content for you to peruse, so go, peruse! Check out our exclusive content over on Why Not Indie? At the end of the day iTunes will be there for you.

Episode #059:
• Intro -  Using weapons to breakdance fight, we begin this episode right. Like raptors. Discount Comic Book Services has a ton of deals, so go check them out and be completely happy you did so. 
• Topic Thunder - Frank Miller probably hates you, depending on what device you're reading this on; DC releases a series digitally before printing it; the DC sales numbers are probably wrong; DC might be changing some publishing teams next year; and guy who deserves it goes to jail.
• Read 'Em and Weep - Avenging Spider-Man #1, by Zeb Wells and Joe Madueira; Punisher Max #19 by Jason Aaron and Steve Dillon; Incredible Hulk by Jason Aaron and everyone born ever.
• Top 5 - Things You Can't Look Cool Doing, suggested by our friend Sean Hulse!
• Outro - The next round's on us.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson waltz in and out like the wind. This episode runs 1:36:31. Please read our webcomic, Super Cute ( Download more Hideous Energy episodes through iTunes or, and you won't have to do any kind of pagan ritual to find happiness.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

#058 - A Little Dash of Truth, a Heaping Plate of Lies

Featuring Caleb Schmreen and Brent Hibbard, this episode is a HUGE one. We discuss Super Cute, our webcomic with Hibbard, then be kind of mean to Caleb. It's all pretty normal. Go over to Twitter if you're into having fun. You can email us through, and we'll answer your questions on-air!  Facebook has both us and Super Cute. Fanoff is the rocking place that hosts us, so go there please! Tumblr is prettier than you. Comic Booked holds us close and holds us tight, so go there too! The only way to make sure you get us all the time definitely is to subscribe through iTunes.

Episode #058:
• Intro -  We're weird and all, but then we talk about a deal from Discount Comic Book Services that is freaking insane. 
• Topic Thunder - Julie Taymor is suing the people she once loved; Brian K. Vaughan will adapt a gigantic Stephen King book for Showtime; Amazong releases a list of best graphic novels and we're only slightly dicks about that; and finally, Marvel hates you and doesn't want you to enjoy things.
• You Should Read This - Local, by Brian Wood and Ryan Kelly; Batman: Under the Red Hood, by Judd Winnick, Dough Mahnke, and others; Lucifer: Devil In the Gateway, by Mike Carey and multiple artists.
• Listener E-mail - We answer a few questions sent to us from our loyal listener, Tiffany Strafe-bomb Piano C-4. The questions are about movies adapted from comics! Send us e-mail questions!
• Super Cute - We discuss our current experiment of running three strips a week for the month of November with Super Cute artist Brent Hibbard. Also, we talk about his process and how he's so pimp.
• The Listen Bitches - We each pick two songs. Holy moly. They are as follows: Birthday Girl, by the Roots; Freaks and Geeks, by Childish Gambino; Helix by Justice; Dissorder by Joy Division; Please Ask For Help by Telekinesis; and Feel It All Around by Washed Out.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson have, and do, dance with the devil in the pale moonlight. That devil is Caleb Schmreen. Episode #056 runs 2:11:17. Go check out our webcomic Super Cute, running three times a week in the month of November, with more content always on the way! Download more Hideous Energy episodes through iTunes or, and the circle will be complete.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

#057 - We're Dying Trying

Today you get an episode that is filled to burstin' with comics talk! Speaking of comics, check out Super Cute, our webcomic. Talk right to us immediately through Twitter. Our email is, and we love getting email!  Facebook has us and Super Cute. Fanoff hosts our show and others, so go check that out! Tumblr shows you what you should be looking at. Comic Booked also hosts us, and also has other stuff to listen to, so go there! Lastly, subscribe to us through iTunes to keep the fun going!

Episode #057:
• Intro -  After our parents left us the Internet we found Discount Comic Book Services. and fell in love.
• Read 'Em and Weep - Justice League Dark #2, by Peter Milligan and Mikel Janin; Incredible Hulk #1 by Jason Aaron and Marc Silvestri; Wolverine and the X-Men #1 by Jason Aaron and Chris Bachalo.
• You Should Read This - Green River Killer, by Jeff Jensen and Jonathan Case; Area 10 by Christos Gage and Chris Samnee; and Northlanders Vol. 1 by Brian Wood and Davide Gianfelice! Go buy them!
• Outro - We promise we'll never change. Or stop trying.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson do not own the internet, obviously. They do own comics, and promise to keep owning more. Episode #056 runs 1:18:35. Check out our webcomic Super Cute, and download more Hideous Energy episodes through iTunes or

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

#056 - Your Hair Is Already Dead (Try To Sleep Now)

Is there someone out there you love enough to purchase some of their hair? Or any of their body? These are the kinds of things we discuss on our show, and also Super Cute, our webcomic. Tweet us whose hair you'd purchase through Twitter. Or yeah, email it to us at You could even go to Facebook for us and Super Cute. Fanoff has lots of people whose hair you could maybe buy. Tumblr has art, not hair, but is there really that big of a difference? Comic Booked is only now developing a way to keep their hair from being stolen and sold on the black market. Please. Go subscribe to us through iTunes. We won't try to sell our hair if you do.

Episode #056:
• Intro -  David and Austin briefly switch brains, then talk about Discount Comic Book Services.
• Topic Thunder - The new Batman game gets discussed A LOT; a third season of "The Walking Dead" is already guaranteed; Marvel hates its employees?; Ed Brubaker will write a movie; and someone is going to own Jerry Siegel's hair, and that person isn't Jerry Siegel.
• Wizard World - Mid-Ohio: David attended Mid-Ohio con, and we discuss it and how kids are the future. Also, Perry, if you're reading/listening to this, give us a shout. You're awesome.
• Outro - See ya' 'round.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson would probably keep some of each others' hair. Austin's bald though. They would find a way around this. Episode #056 runs 1:31:28. Please read our webcomic Super Cute, and please download more Hideous Energy episodes through iTunes or

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

#055 - Our Existential Crisis

There is a very certain character arc to this episode. We start out feeling normal, and end up questioning our very existence at the end. Read things that are similar to this show on our webcomic. Show Twitter some love. Email and talk to us whenever, at your leisure. Facebook has us and Super Cute. Fanoff will help you quit whatever you need to, cold turkey. Tumblr shines and shimmers. Comic Booked would totally pick us for their kickball team. Subscribing to us through iTunes means you don't really have to do too much to get us each week.

Episode #055:
• Intro -  Candles and voodoo and Discount Comic Book Services.
• Topic Thunder - The Walking Dead TV show premieres to huge numbers, but is maybe not as good as the numbers say; New York Comic Con pulled in some huge numbers, and also announced a bunch of stuff. We talk about a few of the announcements.
• Top 5(s) - We do two separate Top Fives this week. First, Verbs or Nouns That Would Make Good Superhero Names. Second, Stupid or Useless Super Powers.
• The Listen Bitches - Austin picks "God Killed the Queen" by Louis XIV, and David picks "Zero" by Smashing Pumpkins. Oh yeah, we also get completely into our own shit, and talk about whether or not we're immature (we are), but also about how much we love comics and how serious we take things. It is interesting?

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson know who they are, and wonder if other people do too. This show runs 1:37:14. Go check out Super Cute! Please download our other episodes and spread the word about how reliable we are about teetering back and forth between normalcy and absolute insane weirdness.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

#054 - With Great Power Comes In With the Fanny Talk (With Mike McLarty!)

Guest-starring both Caleb Schmreen and Mike McLarty, this show has a ton of the talking! Only some of it is mean, but all of it is passionate. Check out our webcomic, and join in the fun. Find Twitter. It found us. Email like all the cool kids. Facebook has us and Super Cute. Fanoff is the hand that rocks the cradle. Tumblr is perdy. Comic Booked guide us through the darkness. Finally, subscribe through iTunes and get a prize!

Episode #054:
• Intro - Sometimes it's hard to remember what we said here, except for the reminder to shop at Discount Comic Book Services.
• Topic Thunder -Vertigo adapts a book you probably have never heard of; Wonder Woman has a dad now, and he isn't the material clay; Barnes and Noble are hilarious babies; and a movie is coming that will kill David righteously.
• Comic Peeps - Our friend Mike McLarty stops by to talk about the new run of Daredevil by Mark Waid and Marcos Martin, and the relaunched Aquaman by Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis. Also, to tell us how we are too mean to Schmreen, but then be mean to him also.
• Top 5 - Goofy Origin Tweaks
• Outro - We are mean to Schmreen. Again.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson seriously do love their friend Caleb. This show runs 1:33:53. Read our webcomic at, then tell your friends about it and this podcast. Only one of them is on iTunes. Guess which!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

#053 - We're Mean and Andy Kirby Is Nice

Titling this episode was a very delicate process. We were presented with so many options, some compliments of our special guest Andy Kirby, and some generated out of our own fetid mind-swamps. Go check out Andy Kirby on the Marvel 616 podcast, follow them on Twitter and Facebook! They're cool guys, with cleaner vocabularies than Austin's was when he was in Kindergarten. Please read our own webcomic, which now has the ability for you to comment and be nice to us! Go to Twitter, it is waiting. Email and the circle will be complete. Facebook really, seriously needs you to click like for us and Super Cute. Fanoff will never leave us, right? Tumblr needs love too. Comic Booked has so much stuff for you to enjoy, including us. Your day won't be over until you download us and subscribe to the show through iTunes!

Episode #053:
• Intro - Skunky and Kankwar. After that we regain our senses and discuss Discount Comic Book Services and only make a couple of outrageous claims about their services. Go check them out!
• Topic Thunder - Image invades the digital world; Patton Oswalt hates DC and having fun with them (maybe?); a new Batman cartoon dares to be completely awful sounding; Marvel announces some new movie titles; and Dan Didio crushes the dreams of us ever reading a book called "The Crisis Crisis."
• Comic Peeps - We chat with Andy Kirby about his love for comics, and how and when he came to them. We only say weird or gross things a few times in this segment, so your family can probably listen. The rest though? Probably might need to screen those first.
• Vampires and Magicians - An attempt at an intro turned into us talking about vampire sex and their dead/undead physiology; also, magicians and books about them.
• Top 5 - Insult Book Titles - Suggested by fan Alex Warn! This one is his and David's fault.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson have said a lot of gross things. Sometimes they record them, most of the time not. This time Andy Kirby joined in on the gross fun. This show runs 1:36:00. Go read the newest Super Cute comic, then subscribe to us through iTunes. Enter funny joke about subscribe versus prescribe here.

Friday, September 30, 2011

The Andrew MacLean Interview!

Andrew MacLean stops by and talks to us about drawing and rocking out like a badass. He hates glass bottles clinking together, and is deathly afraid of spiders. Also, he's illustrating an upcoming book called Meatspace. Watch for it. Tell us what makes you scream and cry on Twitter. Email, it's like a message in a bottle. Facebook is our casual hangout spot. Fanoff has a ton of cool stuff, go check it out! Tumblr is fun to enjoy. Comic Booked has us and so much more. Go over to iTunes for this and other stuff. Read our webcomic Super Cute, and look at your friends in wonderment.

Andrew MacLean draws his inspiration from movies and comics, particularly Mike Mignola. Check out that sweet picture up there for proof. It's available to view alongside more awesome art on his DeviantArt page. Find your jean jacket, and listen to the interview with a dude who is definitely one to watch. Not creepily, though.

Austin Wilson and David Hopkins wear jean jackets under their shirts at all time. This interview runs 57:17 and is dripping with artistry. Not because of us though. Because of Andrew MacLean's art. Download the rest of our shows and go read our webcomic!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

#052 - Information For Your Brain Hole (With Liz Suburbia)

It's a very special episode this week because it guest stars Liz Suburbia! Go check out her webcomic Sacred Heart, and follow her on Twitter and Tumblr. She unequivocally rocks. You should look at Super Cute, our own webcomic! Listen to our insane mutterings on Twitter. Email to make sure we read it while we're wearing our tweed jackets. Facebook lets you see the faces of everyone who likes both Hideous Energy and Super Cute. Fanoff treats us right, so we try to do the same to them. Tumblr sits in a frame. Comic Booked is a playground for comics. Go to iTunes and download all episodes of Hideous Energy!

Episode #052:
• Intro - We talk about weird stuff - surprise - before we talk about Discount Comic Book Services and how they love us for some reason.
• Topic Thunder - Guest starring Liz Suburbia! We talk about "Mad Max" and then about Do-It-Yourself comics and their role in the larger landscape of comics; piracy and whether it is the Apocalypse some people say it is; and yet again we have to discuss whether or not DC hates women. Seth Breedlove wrote an article we mention.
• You Should Read This - David selects "Planetary;" Austin picks "Lady Sabre & the Pirates of the Ineffable Aether;" and Liz Suburbia chooses "Finder."
• The Listen Bitches - Liz Suburbia picks "Tambourines-N-Thyme" by Nana Grizol; David picks "Is This It" by the Strokes; Austin picks "Creepin' Up the Backstairs" by The Fratellis.
• Outro - Ummmmm...

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson have made some awesome friends through this podcast, and Liz Suburbia is one of them. This show runs 1:45:48. Read our newest Super Cute strip, download all Hideous Energy episodes on iTunes.

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Do It Yourself Comic - Editing

I've gone through quite a few steps on the way to creating my own comic - concept, design, plotting, and scripting - and now that I have a finished script in hand, it's time to do something with it. Instead of starting in on the actual art process (see: design), I'm going to spend some time editing what I've written and see what changes.

I won't spend too much time on this since the process has a dual nature. While I was writing the script I edited out certain things that weren't working, almost always because of space. The comic I'm setting out to make is 16 pages, and you wouldn't think only six pages less than the traditional comic book would make too big of a difference, but it seemed like it did. This partially might've been because I had the story in my mind, and written down as a loose outline. Without seeing it in the context of comic book pages, where I would have to worry about pacing the dialogue along with the overall flow of the story, I wouldn't be able to see where I might need to make cuts. I'm sure some people might spend more time on the outlining, and get every piece as meticulously into place as possible, but I didn't want to get bogged down on what will be a very small story. This one-shot shouldn't take me months to outline, so I got the basic gist of the story down and went ahead.

One thing I ran into immediately was having enough time to give my readers a sense of who the main character is. I had all of these aspirations of showing a storyline unfolding with the main character, but also giving the reader a sense of who the secondary character is, and that quickly went out the window. My goal to show how anger can affect us got whittled down to one central act, and the main character became the sole focus. Another thing from the original outline that was changed was the timeline. I had it written that I would show the main character at work over the course of two days, but that was impossible because of the page count.

Movies sometimes utilize a technique known as a "jump cut," which I'm pretty sure was the product of the French New Wave, or so David tells me. It's a method that can work beautifully on-screen, allowing the filmmakers to show the passage of time in large or small chunks, and present a visually interesting change that will keep the viewer engaged. In comic books, however, it can sometimes be too jarring, and only work in conjunction with captions or dialogue explaining the new surroundings. I utilized a few jump cuts, and did so for a few reasons. First, I was working with a very limited amount of space to tell my story. I needed to set up the main character's life, both in and out of work, and I wanted to show him at home to give the readers some kind of comparison between how he acts when he's alone, and how he acts when he's with people (or one person in particular). Second, after I realized my 16 pages were quickly being eaten up by the script, I knew that using jump cuts would be an easy way to cut out certain chunks of narrative, and do so in a way that served the story.

One of the bad things about editing as you work is it takes longer to produce a final product, and definitely presents the possibility of getting wrapped up in making the work perfect before it's even finished. Normally when I'm writing something I'll worry about editing later, but since this is such a short comic, one I can finish and not worry about sequels or follow-up issues, I didn't worry about getting caught up in the editing.

Most likely after I go back to the script and look over it I'll see pacing problems, or maybe plot points that don't make sense. I will definitely see dialogue that could be better, and that will be the majority of what gets edited. I'm going to go into it with my editing weapons out. Murder your darlings.


Friday, September 23, 2011

The Sam Humphries Interview!

We talk to writer Sam Humphries, the writer of Our Love Is Real, a one-shot getting ready to be published by Image Comics! He talks about having sex with plants and dogs, but also about corporate-citizenship, as well as how awesome he looks airbrushed on the side of a van. Tell us what your van looks like on Twitter. Email and we shall talk, internet style. Facebook probably looks different, but who cares? Fanoff has MP3 downloads of us talking! Tumblr has pictures that we love, and you might too. Comic Booked is a place we hang out 'cause it's cool. You can download this and every other thing we've done, ever, on iTunes. Also, go check out our webcomic Super Cute.

Give a listen to us chatting with writer Sam Humphries. We discuss co-opting genuinely cool and artistic facets of culture, whether there are children out there reading comics, and also bigotry and hatred. It's a lot of fun, trust us! There are, however, no monster trucks.

Austin Wilson and David Hopkins just bought some vans and airbrush kits. You will know when you see them coming. This interview runs 1:23:45 and made the guys bleed out of their eyes immediately because of that running time. Download us!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

#051 - He's a Duck Banker

For our 51st show we talk about comics, but also hair and duck banking. No, that second thing is not one of those HILARIOUS special sex moves. It really is about ducks, and banking. Go check out the second Super Cute webcomic! Sit next to us digitally on Twitter. Email and we promise we'll read it. Facebook wants you to click like on Hideous Energy and Super Cute. Fanoff makes sure to always tell us we're pretty. Tumblr reminds you why there are colors. Comic Booked is where the comics go to play. Find us on iTunes and download the holy crap out of us.

Episode #051:
• Intro - We're dorks who worry about HP and MP and all kinds of other dorky abbreviations, and Discount Comic Book Services graciously sponsors us.
• Topic Thunder - There was almost an "Avengers" game, and it was almost awesome to play it; JT Krul is done with "Green Arrow;" and DC, again, may or may not hate women.
• Read 'Em and Weep - Frankenstein Agent of S.H.A.D.E. by Jeff Lemire and Alberto Ponticelli; Demon Knights by Paul Cornell and Diogenes Neves; and Ultimate Spider-Man #1 by Brian Michael Bendis and Sara Pichelli.
• Hair - Everyone has it, kind of.
• Outro - Duck banking.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson aren't sure they know where some of their words come from. This show runs 1:35:43. Go check out the new Super Cute strip. Read it, then download this show and others on iTunes.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Making the Comics - A Peek Into Super Cute

Even though we don't talk about it too often, David and I continue to operate Hideous Energy exactly as it was operated the day it began. Our love of comics has never waned, and we are the right kind of obsessive to ensure that it won't. It was only natural that after so long of loving something so completely we would decide to create our own, an object of adoration that would be born from and exist within the ruby-tinted love we huddle around every week when we record the Hideous Energy podcast.

What all of that means is we started a webcomic called Super Cute. There's some information on that site under the "About" tab which touches on this briefly, and gives a little insight into how things came about. The even shorter version is that we found Brent Hibbard, our artist, and things seriously fell into line pretty easily after that. I've been struggling with getting comics made for some time now. I only write them (although right now I'm working on "drawing" one too), so no matter how much time I've put into a project, seeing it come to fruition has always relied on someone else. Super Cute is officially the first comic I've been involved in making, because it's the first that has not only been started, but completed. Which means I've had a lot of starts and stops over the years. Something happened with this one though, something different. Once Hibbard sent us his art, and David and I both saw he was awesome, he started working to become the artist of this project and he never stopped. His commitment was never in doubt because it was on display in every image he sent us. It is sort of laughable how much everything worked exactly like it should in the run-up to this webcomic being published, once we found our artist.

The first official strip is up on the website. Here's the strip that was originally going to be published first, strip #000. It didn't rehash any information we'd already published through the "Characters" tab on the site, but it did give readers another week to wait until the actual stories about these two characters (Bronson and Leonard) began. So we don't feel like we asked Brent to draw something only to file it in a drawer, here is the finished strip, entitled "#000 - Diagnostics," along with a breakdown of the process on the road to a completed strip. Thanks to Brent for being dedicated and awesome! Go check out the webcomic.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

#050 - "Fifty" Kind of Sounds Like "Filthy"

For the 50th time we talk to you about comics and all kinds of nuttiness! Can you believe we've done this 50 times? Also, we have a webcomic now! Talk right to us on Twitter. Email if you want to talk to us about anything and need more space. Facebook now not only has Hideous Energy, but Super Cute (our webcomic) as well. Fanoff collects us and we love that. Tumblr is skin deep. Comic Booked has us and so much more. Go download this show, and all of our others on iTunes. Count them and realize we love you and this sooooo much.

Episode #050:
• Intro - In honor of our 50th show ever we talk about Dick Carpet, then expertly segue into mentioning our sponsors, Discount Comic Book Services.
• Read 'Em and Weep - DC books, talked about for A LOT. Or a while. Either one. Batgirl #1 by Gail Simone and Ardian Syaf; Animal #1 by Jeff Lemire and Travel Foreman; and Action Comics #1 by Grant Morrison and Rags Morales.
• Top 5 - People Whose Bodies We'd Possess and Why
• Outro, With Special Surprises - We sign off for the 50th time, and give you a little behind-the-scenes peek into what recording the show is actually like.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson won't stop, because they can't stop. This is what Hideous Energy is all about. This show runs 1:30:33. Go to and check out the new strip! You should also go to iTunes and download all of this, all 50 episodes of us doing this weird thing we do.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

#049 - It's Time To Travel (With Secrets)

We traveled back in time to record this episode and reveal what we've been working on all along. It's a webcomic! Talk to us about it on Twitter. Email and have long, heartfelt conversations with us. Facebook now not only has Hideous Energy, but Super Cute (our webcomic) as well. Go search for it, until we get 25 fans and get our URL. Fanoff loves us and we love them. Tumblr has the pictures. Comic Booked will let you enjoy us over there too. If you love life, download us on iTunes. That will prove it to yourself.

Episode #049:
• Intro - Counting blessings can and should include counting Discount Comic Book Service. Also, us.
• Read 'Em and Weep - The DC Relaunch is finally in full effect, and we review Flashpoint #5 by Geoff Johns and Andy Kubert, as well as Justice League #1 by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee. We discuss this a lot.
• Secret Project Revealed - If you've been following us at all, you might have heard/seen a few references to a secret project. It's why we had to skip recording last week, and it can finally be revealed! We interview (kind of) Brent Hibbard, our awesome artist on our brand new webcomic, Super Cute. It's at, and will be updated every Wednesday with the show! Thanks to Brent (the One we call Hibbard), this run-up to episode #050 has been a ton of fun. Right now there is a promo photo posted of the two characters the strip will focus on, and next week the webcomic officially begins with strip #000. Check it out!
• Top 5 - Worst Ways To Time Travel
• Listen Bitches - David picks "Brother" by Murder By Death, and Austin picks "The World May Never Know" by Dr. Dog.

David Hopkins and Austin Wilson found Brent Hibbard, and together they all created a webcomic. It's a lot of fun, so go read it. This show runs 1:26:49. Go to and find your way to us in all forms, but also go to! Oh yeah, and download this show on iTunes.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Whitney Matheson Interview!

Today we bring you an interview with someone who also talks and writes about comics - it's Whitney Matheson, from USA Today's Pop Candy column! Check out Pop Candy, and probably put it into your bookmarks immediately. Send us links to cool shit on Twitter. Email to let us know about things that need knowing. Facebook is maybe awesome? Fanoff has MP3 downloads of us talking! Tumblr will make you lose consciousness. Comic Booked let's you listen to us too. Where else? How about iTunes! Go there immediately and get this and other shows we recorded.

Whitney Matheson stops by to chat with us regarding pop culture, how she came to write for USA Today, and her journey to comics. Also, she talks to us about how she could totally kick Ryan Reynolds's ass, and how Pee Wee Herman almost made her cry. Thanks for listening!

Austin Wilson and David Hopkins would probably never even try to fight Ryan Reynolds. Fight him with hugs maybe. This interview runs 50:42, and is available from Fan Off, Comic Booked, and most importantly from iTunes!

The Do It Yourself Comic - Scripting

If you're following along you'll know I loosely plotted a comic I'm working on making myself, and that I've also briefly worked on the design for how the art will look. The plotting was definitely loose, since I'm going to be creating a mini-comic. That doesn't mean there has to be a simple plot, but that's the path I chose.

Now that I know what I want the theme of my comic to be - the idea of giving and taking, and how anger can affect both of those - I can start in with the actual scripting. Normally I would focus a lot more attention on creating characters, and that would play a huge role in the plotting. I've spent less time doing that here since there will only be two people in my book. In actuality I've most likely thought about these two guys more than I told myself I would, imagining their back stories, their demeanor and why they do certain things.

Here are the first two script pages. Click them to see them better.

I knew I wanted to start the comic with the main character's hand just lying there, to show inaction and how that plays a role into who this guy is and how he feels most of the time. His hand is lying there limply, almost like he's dead. That easily led to my wanting to show him shutting his alarm clock off, another action which can be used to show what kind of thoughts and feelings we're going to be seeing from this guy.

After I wrote that first page I knew I wanted to do something unique with page two, possibly a two-page spread. The first image that popped into my head was a long panel, one where we saw the main character lying there looking dejected and not at all happy to be awake. I wanted it to be more than him simply not being a "morning person." I wanted there to be a sense of doom, or depression. As my head went through all of this I started thinking about depression, and I remembered a story my mom told me once about a family member dealing with depression. She would see him constantly lying back, with an arm draped across his face, and it struck me as a very sad pose. I thought of this person desiring darkness, doing all he could do to push the light away, and it made me feel for him. So I wrote that into the script. 

Next, I thought about how to lay this page out, and whether I would write it into a two-page spread. Using the theme of hands, how they are pulling us through our days, I tried to think of where I could go, and how to use my theme to get there. I really liked the idea of trying to play up this character's sadness. The more I thought about the sadness the more it started taking on a new form, and started seeming like this guy wasn't just dealing with a job he hated, but a life he wasn't sure he could live anymore. It started to become about despair.

Thinking of layout, searching for an interesting way to move the reader's eyes through these pages, I thought about how I wanted to show the character reaching down for something, basically for the simple reason of I thought it would look cool to have the panel be defined by the outside of his wrist and hand, and have him reaching down into another panel. It would make for a short page, but hopefully the layout and emotions/story implications presented would make it stick in the readers' minds. After I thought that, my mind shifted quickly to what he could possibly be reaching for. The first thing I thought of was a prescription pill bottle. My thought process went like this: "Yeah! Wait, no. That's way over-dramatic. How bout some Tylenol or something. Well, wait. Yeah, it might not be so bad for him to be reaching for a prescription pill bottle. And yeah, how 'bout he grabs it and discovers it's empty. Ooooooh. Yeah. I like that." So that's what I wrote in.

It put a nice little fire under my ass, and got me excited to write the rest of the script as quickly as I could, so that's what I'm going to try and do. I don't really think there needs to be an entry on editing, but ya' never know. Maybe I'll come across something I think I should write about, and how I made the decision to alter dialogue or some other small part of the whole process/product. Stay tuned.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The Do It Yourself Comic - Plotting

Here I am, working my way toward making a comic. I've gone through a couple of steps already, working on the concept of my book, as well as some preliminary design work regarding the art. It's all been a ton of fun, and I'm ready to get started on the next step in the process. I've said it before, but I'll reiterate it now: none of this is supposed to read as a How-To, but simply as a description of how one amateur does things.

Normally when I start writing what I hope will turn out as a comic, whether I have an artist attached or not, I begin with plotting. It wasn't always like this, but it's something I've gotten more and more comfortable with, and something I view as necessary to make sure I go into the actual writing as prepared as possible. At first it was hard, and felt pretty arduous, but after doing it consistently something weird happened. It stopped seeming like work, and started seeming like fun. Actually, sometimes it feels like I'm having more fun plotting than actually writing. That doesn't really matter in the end, because I can't really not do one or the other, not without making myself feel like shit.

The comic I'm trying to make is going to be 16 pages, a mini-comic that tells a story with a beginning and an end. Technically there will probably be a middle, but that might be kind of hard to plan for, so right now I'm plotting out the beginning and end. I want to try and present two characters in a way so the reader feels as if they know about them and their lives, and finds them intriguing, interesting, and provocative in some way. It's definitely a tall order for 16 pages wherein I introduce the characters while simultaneously trying to tell a story and end it satisfyingly.

I talked a little about what I have in mind during the concept stage, and I'll expand on that here. The idea I came up with for this mini evolved out of a two-page spread layout I had planned for a story I'm currently plotting for another book called "Ninjaville." I'd still like to use the layout for that comic, but that one's going to need an illustrator, a lot more time, and most likely some funding. For now I'll have to settle for using the idea within this mini, and having it filtered through my own abilities with photographs, light-boxing, digital editing, and print methods.

The layout would have 10 panels, with 6 running across the top (an even number to easily divide down the middle, with that bastard fold), one giant panel in the middle, and four panels running across the bottom (again, even). I want to follow a character walking through the top 6 panels, illustrating and laying out the art so the character's head/face isn't shown. The idea not to show the character's face is based on two things: first, I don't really want my face in this mini a bunch. It's partly a shyness/self-conscious thing, but it's also because I don't really want to be the star of a comic, I just want to write and create them. Second, I really like the idea of showing emotion using nothing but body language, particularly hands. Why the hell did I choose hands? That's part of the original layout; those top 6 panels following the character walking will have six smaller panels within them, framing the right hand of our protagonist. It will be clenched into a fist, and I want the readers' eyes to follow it just as closely as they follow his walking, maybe more so.

The concept of creeping anger, or having anger sneak up on you and take hold so completely it poisons your thoughts, actions, and emotions is intriguing to me. By putting the focus on that fist I'm letting the reader know that something is going to happen. I can either make it obvious, or not. I'm choosing to go the obvious route. This guy is heading somewhere to punch someone, and this has to come across with no facial expressions. It's going to have dialogue, all in narrative text boxes, but none of it is going to say anything like, "I'm going to punch him."

After I knew I wanted to incorporate that two-page spread, and play with the idea of a very sneaky anger, my head circled the idea, looked at all the angles and corners it could possibly go in. Focusing on that hand gave me the idea to do a comic that is largely based around nothing but hands. They are how we interact with the world on a daily basis. That particular thought sent me down a path that led me to the theme of giving and taking, both of which we do with our hands, including throwing punches. With a theme now - give and take - I thought about why this character wanted to punch the other character so badly. One of the things I came up with was a disgruntled employee. It isn't original, admittedly, but for a 16-page mini-comic I'm not planning on doing any follow-up issues to, I decided that was fine. Right now it's more about showing myself I can do this if I want to, and I am the only one who is going to stop me. Still though, I want the story to have something original, and plan on bringing that with my characterizations and layout.

My character is going to react to something so poorly that he believes punching his boss is the answer. Actually, he probably doesn't think about it at all. Once that anger takes hold things escalate quickly, and if he thinks anything it's a hazy mess of emotion. With the why in place I could focus more fully on the ending, which I'm not planning on being just a punch; I want to make the reader care that this person has punched someone else, and again, with 16 pages I'll have my work cut out for me.

One thing I've read from numerous editors, writers, and artists is that when pitching a comic it's important to completely explain the project, and not attempt to hold out on the ending or any surprises. You're not trying to have them experience the pitch exactly like the reader will experience the comic. I'm not pitching this comic though, so I can violate that rule. I'm not going to tell what the ending is, other than someone gets punched. I still want someone to read this eventually, so I'll hold onto at least one secret.

Knowing that I will be writing about anger, using hands to illustrate how we give and take from each other constantly and how that can maybe incite anger, I went from there. I would use myself as the character who does the punching, and cast a friend as the character who gets punched. Now I can start writing the script, which won't come out finished. It'll need editing and refining, and will most likely give me some ideas regarding layout that could potentially affect story as well.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Do It Yourself Comic: The Design

After deciding to make a comic and thinking up a concept for what exactly the thing would contain and be about, I moved onto the next step. Since I'm going to compile the art myself by taking photographs and light-boxing them, I wanted to focus on the design before I got too far into scripting. In this case, "design" is sort of a loose term, since I'm referring to light-boxing photographs to produce pencils. I've messed around with light-boxing in the past, and was generally pretty happy with the results I came up with, but it'd been a while. It was possible I'd take some photos, sit down to light-box them, and realize it looked like garbage.

All the times in the past I've ever started working on a comic I've always started with the writing first, but that's because I haven't been involved in the illustration. Now, since I'm doing both, I was able to think of things somewhat differently, or at least in a slightly altered order. Although I haven't written any of the script yet there are a lot of images in my head, ideas for panel progression and storytelling mechanisms, and knowing some of this stuff definitely helped when I wanted to do some practice art. I really like thinking of how a page will be laid out, how to utilize the comic form to tell interesting stories, and visualization plays a pretty big role in my writing process.

I went out with my camera and my buddy named Emery Peck to take some photos. Some of the pictures were random, staged so I could practice with penciling in (tracing) details later, things like shadows, folds in clothing and so forth. Other pictures were reminiscent of sequences I am planning to write. There were a few concerns I had with my camera - mostly about utilizing continuous shooting to capture movement, and whether that would look more authentic than posing the "actors" - along with how close I would need to shoot in order to give myself high quality pictures, basically so I wouldn't be with a photo to light-box and end up trying to discern what the hell all the blurry blobs in the background were.

Here are two of the 56 pictures we took. I selected these because they presented people at two very different distances, and also in places with varied amounts of shadow and detail.

I took the pictures in color, then changed them to black and white afterwards on my laptop. I also altered the contrast, exposure, and definition to make the blacks darker. This makes it easier to find definition between objects when light-boxing. I'm still unsure if I'm planning on inking the pencils or not. I can definitely alter the pencils digitally, darkening them either in Photoshop or Illustrator, but inks tend to add another level of completion to pencils.

After altering the original photos I printed them both out on a single page of regular computer paper. Since I don't have a light box, and
don't have the money to buy one (or the materials to make one) I had to figure out some way to create a light box from what I have around the house. I took a drawing out of a picture frame, removed its cardboard back, and was left with a large pane of glass. Next, I took a table lamp from the living room, removed its shade and sat it on the floor. I sat with the pane of glass on my knees, and let the bare light bulb project its light up and through the glass. I laid the page with the printed photos down and taped it in place using Painter's Tape, the blue kind people usually use to make sure they don't accidentally paint on their wainscoting or carpet. Painter's Tape is made with less adhesive (or at least a less-aggressive adhesive), so you can pull it off without worrying about bringing whatever it's stuck to along. In this case it's going to be the art for the comic, so I don't have to worry about ruining a page because I accidentally tore the page in half or something.

Next, I laid a piece of plain computer paper over the photo page, and taped it in place as well. Someone once showed me a trick for keeping two sheets of paper flat against each other, and I did that here: I laid a ruler down, keeping the pages flush and allowing the maximum amount of detail to shine through from the photographs.

To "illustrate" I used a simple, cheap mechanical pencil. I had a fine tip Sharpie next to me, in case I wanted to try my hand at inking, but I skipped that for now. Here's what I came up with.

 I didn't get too deep into the details yet because I wanted to focus on the face in the first image and the shadows in the second. There is a lot of wood grain in that first photo, and a ton of bushes in the second, and I didn't want to spend too much time on these. I definitely don't want to "draw" in an intensely realistic style, and did a pretty loose trace in some parts. After doing this initial test with the light-boxing I'm confident I can achieve the style I'm looking for, and will be able to at least get the images I want. There's definitely further design work in the future, though, because I've got a few very specific ideas about layout, but I don't want to think too much of that just yet.

I'm definitely planning on drawing more of the backgrounds, but didn't do so here because these were just tests. I'm pleased with how the art turned out, so I can let my head move on to the next phase: scripting.