Friday, June 7, 2013

Mike Norton - Battlepug

2013.04.06 Comic Geek Speak Supershow, Reading, Pa

To be honest I don't remember how I heard about Battlepug, but I quickly became a fan. When I heard Mike Norton was going to be at the Supershow, along with many other great artists, it helped make my decision to attend easy. 

Battlepug is a web-comic written and illustrated by Mike Norton and colored by Allen Passalaqua. The web-comic was launched in February 2011 after Norton created the characters for a t-shirt design. The story revolves around the last surviving member of the Kinmundian tribe, "The Warrior". His steed is the larger than life Battlepug.  The story is narrated by Moll, who tells tales of the Warrior to her dogs, a Pug named Mingo and a French Bulldog named Colfax. 

The first year of comic strips was published in a hardcover edition by Dark Horse, and Norton received an Eisner Award for Best Digital Comic in 2012.

Mike Norton has worked in the comic industry for many years on books like Queen and Country, Gravity, Runaways, All-New Atom and Green Arrow/Black Canary, Billy Batson & the Magic of Shazam, Young Justice, Fear itself: Youth in Revolt....

The Warrior is clearly influenced by Cimmerian Warrior Conan the Barbarian, a sword and sorcery hero, created by Robert E Howard in pulp fiction magazines. Conan first appeared in Weird Tales 1932. Howard would publish 17 stories in Weird Tales, along with 4 Conan adventures published after his death in Space Science Fiction, Fantasy Magazine, the Magazine of Horror and The Coming of Conan. 4 additional stories unfinished by Howard would be completed by L. Sprague de Camp and Lin Carter...

Most notably Conan would garner the publics attention when Arnold Schwarzenegger portrayed the character in two feature films. This would spur both Marvel (1970-1974) and Dark Horse (2003) to publish further adventure stories. A newspaper comic strip from Marvel would also be published from 1978 to 1981 (Roy Thomas and John Buscema)

Robert E Howard is from Cross Plains, Texas, where they hold an annual celebration and a pictorial postal cancellations is available.

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