This is insanely awesome! We hit the ground running at 9AM yesterday and by 11AM our Kickstarter campaign was fully funded! Thank you to everyone who continues to support our little Poe book and to those who have just joined us: welcome! We are so pleased to have you along for the journey!
It’s 6:21AM here and I’m trying to get caffeinated as I write a new update for Kickstarter supporters that announces our fabulous first stretch goal. I am so thrilled and excited to share this marvelous news with them!
We’ve had quite a blast putting this campaign together! Getting to work with our long-time friends and fellow creatives again, The Corpse Crew, was a wonderful experience. Their interpretation of our story is the darkest thus far, but it is certainly a fitting tribute to the Master of the Macabre. They killed it! (Pun totally intended.)
To our returning supporters, thank you from the bottoms of our hearts for continuing with us on this journey! And to all who are just now joining the fellowship, welcome to the world of The Imaginary Voyages of Edgar Allan Poe– a nightmarish journey through the mind of the the world’s greatest fantasist. Buckle in. It’s going to be a wild ride!
The Raven Lunatics Web Show Will Premiere February 28th, 2018
Harvey-Nominated Comic Creator Joins forces with Poe Museum Curator
Lakeland, FL: Hocus Pocus Comics Publisher, Dwight L. MacPherson, is teaming with Author and Artist, Chris Semtner, to produce a weekly web show. The Raven Lunatics will launch on Youtube on Wednesday, February 28th. Together, MacPherson and Semtner will be discussing nineteenth century poet, author, and Master of the Macabre, Edgar Allan Poe, his work, and his impact on popular culture. This announcement comes on a significant date: Edgar Allan Poe’s 209th Birthday.
For more information contact theravenlunatics(at)gmail(dot)com.
Harvey Award-nominated comic creator, writer, and editor Dwight L. MacPherson has been one of the most prolific writing professionals for more than 10 years. A longtime advocate of webcomics and digital media, his steampunk webcomic, Sidewise (DC Comics), won the June 2009 Zuda competition. He has also seen his creator-owned properties published by Image Comics, IDW Publishing, and many others. His publishing company, Hocus Pocus Comics, is an independent publishing company specializing in digital comics, webcomics, and graphic novels. They have three series currently available on ComiXology and Amazon Kindle The Imaginary Voyages of Edgar Allan Poe, Elevator, and I-TEAM. For more information: http://www.hpcomics.net
The Curator of the Edgar Allan Poe Museum in Richmond, Chris Semtner has written, co-written, or edited several books about Edgar Allan Poe, art, popular culture, and history. He has provided articles for Biography.com, Crime Writers’ Chronicles, The Edgar Allan Poe Review, and Resources for American Literary Studies. His most recent book is The Poe Shrine: Building the World’s Finest Edgar Allan Poe Collection, which is now available at Amazon.com. Semtner regularly speaks to groups around the United States about Poe, visual art, horror, and dark history and has been interviewed for documentaries airing on PBS, C-Span, BBC4, Military History Channel, and other networks. An award-winning, internationally exhibited visual artist, Semtner has works in public collections including the Virginia Historical Society, the City of Baltimore, and the University of Maryland. He has also curates exhibits for museums, libraries, and art centers across the country with his most recent exhibit dealing with the scientific analysis of Edgar Allan Poe’s hair.
We adore the fact that many educators have discovered our story and are not only personally enjoying the book, but they are recommending it to fellow educators for use in the classroom! Anyone who knows me is well aware of my love for educators and younger readers, so this knowledge has made my year! Special thanks to High School Social Studies teacher, Tim Smyth, for taking the time to share this wonderful public recommendation of our story. This has brought me great joy!
Are there any educators out there who would be interested in reading a PDF version of The Imaginary Voyages of Edgar Allan Poe #1? Simply drop us a line at info(dot)hpcomics(at)gmail(dot)com and we will be happy to send it to you free of charge along with our sincere gratitude for the amazing–and oftentimes underappreciated–work you do for the next generation. You are all heroes in my book!
Back in January of this year, when Dwight L. MacPherson and I were talking about where we wanted to go with Hocus Pocus Comics, one thing we agreed on was that we wanted to have one completed series by year’s end. We hit the ground running with our Poe books/Kickstarter campaigns, and in between we released ELEVATOR, one of our most poignant stories thus far. We were not sure if ComiXology’s schedule would allow this to happen, but we just learned that issue 4 drops next Wednesday, 12/6. A complete book by year end! We have a lot to be proud of and to be thankful for, but none of this would have happened without the incredible team of friends that has joined us on this journey as indie publishers. Randy Valiente, Petro Rotelli, and Dr. Amy H. Sturgis… you all made this happen. We love you guys. If you want to catch up on the story before issue 4 launches, click on the link to purchase issues 1-3:
We’re going to just let this review speak for itself:
I’ve been very vocal about the first two comic book titles from Hocus Pocus Comics. I expected the new “director’s cut” of Edgar Allan Poo to be great because I thought the book was brilliant when I read it the first time around. I certainly haven’t been disappointed in the relaunch and love not only the changes that have been made to the story but the spectacular new artwork as well. When it comes to their other new book Elevator, it really is an extremely well done horror comic. The first issue was like a Porsche. You opened the book and it went from zero to a hundred pretty quick. But issue two was like taking your Porsche onto the Autobahn, gunning it to two hundred miles per hour, and just enjoying the ride. It really was mind-blowing.
Elevator #3 seems to have taken the poor kids who are stuck in hell and taken their destiny right out of their own hands. With their friend Matt gone, Richard and Edward aren’t so much circumventing hell as following this mystery angel who is guiding them from place to place. It’s kind of like you are at Disney World and get on the It’s A Small World ride. You are there on the boat, you can’t get off, and you’re stuck watching everything around you. At this point it is like that for Richard and Edward except, well, they are in hell.
Now the brothers actually get to learn something big about their past while in hell that I won’t describe in a review as it is way too spoilerish. I will say that what they learn helps them understand their past including things about their treacherous father (who is still roaming around hell looking for his kids). It’s a sad moment for the two boys. I have a feeling that this revelation will factor in greatly to the final issue.
This is coupled with another plot point that I would love to spoil but this reveal is way too big. Back on Earth, at the Helton Inn, that old creepy dude who lured the kids into the elevator to hell is busy making preparations. Basically people will be drawn to the inn, who he’ll put in the elevator, who will then be stuck in hell. Not the best place to spend the weekend…especially if there is a Holiday Inn down the street. We see old creepy dude finalizing his plans and then the big reveal happens on who he really is. Again – too big of a reveal to spoil it in this review. But it really will make you say, “Ooooooohhhhhhh.”
So most of the issue is the characters not really in control of what they are doing with a good bit of exposition here and there. I guess as issue two moved at such an incredible pace writer Dwight MacPherson needed to fit in more of the story somewhere. That somewhere is issue three. As next issue is the last issue of this miniseries I’m sure the explanation needed to come now so we can all fully enjoy the third act.
Because of this Elevator #3 is slightly disappointing. Now that doesn’t take away how amazing this book is. This miniseries has been outstanding. Even this issue is outstanding. It’s only disappointing because it slightly feels that the exposition had to be pushed in before the fourth issue hit. Now you are absolutely glad to know what you know once you read this issue. But my solution? Make the miniseries longer. I don’t know about everyone else but I would have certainly enjoyed reading five issues instead of four.
All in all this miniseries has been fantastic. The writing is just incredible and artist Randy Valiente does a stunning job bringing this book to life. The black and white artwork is particularly haunting so making the decision not to color this book was such the perfect call. Many of the panels have no background. It’s just white. This in no way takes away from hell. Rather it speaks to how bleak hell really is. You don’t need fire and brimstone to make hell scary. The creatures that inhabit it and the grim, desolate landscape really speaks volumes. I truly applaud this decision.
If you aren’t reading Elevator you should immediately jump on. It truly is one of the best books I’ve read this year. I’m fairly certain that the last issue of this book will completely blow everyone away and I truly can’t wait to see where this journey ultimately takes us.