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Gallagher's Holiday Hits The Charts
By Brian Jacks


It's not on the Diamond Top 300 list, and you won't find it in most comic shops, but the #11 comic in sales (based on Diamond sales estimates at ICV2.com) for December is Westie's Holiday Adventures, starring Santa Claus and Westie the Kangaroo, mascot for shopping mall chain Westfield. The book, with a print run of 85,000 copies, outsold all but the top ten comics in December, being edged out of the top ten by Ultimate X-Men, but soundly beating Transformers, Wolverine, and Superman. The Westie comic is a giveaway comic for children who visit Santa at 15 Westfield Shoppingtown's across the country, and it was written and drawn by John "Buzzboy" Gallagher of Sky-Dog Press.

"We're thrilled at the response we're getting from the Westie comic," said Gallagher, "kids relate to the comic as a cartoon on paper, and parents enjoy the nostalgia and originality of the story." Besides being the creator of the new Buzzboy trade paperback (www.buzzboy.com), Gallagher is also a graphic designer specializing in custom comics for businesses and educational organizations.

Working with Harold Buchholz Print Services, Gallagher created a 16-page, full color digest comic telling the tale of Westie and his sidekicks searching for Santa. Gallagher was also aided by a special consultant, Baltimore Comic-Con organizer Marc Nathan, who owns one of the largest collections of Christmas giveaway comics in the world.

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Besides the holiday comic, Gallagher, along with comics inking great John Beatty, recently completed a tradeshow giveaway comic for BMDS, an international biotech company. "I think this also says something about the validity of comics as a pop icon," added Gallagher, "as well as a sign that there is a big all-ages market for comics out there."

Those interested in the "Westie Holiday Adventures" giveaway comic should visit www.westfield.com or www.sky-dog.com, and call their local Westfield Shoppington for details. Buzzboy: Trouble in Paradise, the new trade paperback from Sky-Dog Press, hit comic shops and bookstore shelves in early December.


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