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Oni Announces Third Allred Book By Brian Jacks
Oni Press has announced an April release date for the last in its trio of one-shots focusing on characters from Mike Allred’s THE ATOMICS. Written by Allred and drawn by J. Bone, the full-color MR. GUM comic focuses on the super team’s stretchy hero with the "silly smile and killer wit." As with the previous one-shots, MR. GUM will feature a cover collaboration by Allred and the guest artist, and the book’s coloring will be provided by the Allred family.
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“There was no other artist to draw Mr. Gum,” Allred said. “If you figured Chynna Clugston-Major was a natural choice for IT GIRL and Lawrence Marvit for SPACEMAN, then you’ll really be shocked by what a perfect fit Bone was for Mr. Gum. The man is a cartooning dynamo! I wish he could draw everything!”
The publisher describes the book this way: "The story in MR. GUM is one that should be pleasing to any Allred fans. Long-time readers of his work will know that his books are renowned for their skewed but sweet romances — It Girl & Adam Balm, Red Rocket 7 and the sisters, The Orphan and Edie Sawyer, Madman & Joe. Mr. Gum becomes aware of this tendency towards love, as well, when he notices that he’s the only member of The Atomics who doesn’t have a significant other. His adventure begins when he decides to do something about it… Throw in some bendy, stretchy action and you’ll get some idea what this comic book is gonna do."
“There’s always been a romantic innocence to the Snap City universe that really sets it apart from other comics,” said Oni Press editor-in-chief Jamie S. Rich. “There is also that famous ‘retro’ quality, exemplified in Mike’s clean lines and his attention to every detail, from the smallest bit of background ephemera to hair and clothes. I immediately noticed the same sorts of things in J. Bone’s work on ALISON DARE and his collaborations with Darwyn Cooke in TANGLED WEB. He also has a wicked sense of humor, which I knew Mike would love.”
“In fact,” Rich continued, “I remember when Mike discovered J.’s work. We were in Excalibur Comics here in Portland, and he saw a copy of SOLAR STELLA. He picked it up, flipped through it, and exclaimed, ‘Who is this? This comic shall be mine!’ It’s like the first time Mick met Keith.”
“You can’t be a relatively young comics reader and not know Mike Allred’s work,” Bone said. “I started reading MADMAN about as soon as I stopped breast feeding. It became my new nutrition.”
“The story is Mr. Gum’s, but I had to make sure that I could squeeze the other guy’s in there as well,” Allred added. “The fun of these one-shots is I get to make my favorite artists draw things I want to see them draw. I can’t wait to see J. get his pencil on the Atomics gang.”
“Fun is our buzz word,” Rich concluded. “We’ve been making these comics as fun as we can from cover to cover. MR. GUM is going to stretch the good time as far as it will go, and then let it snap back and knock us all around so we end up on the floor laughing in one comic book mess. Isn’t that what it’s all about?”
Hitting store shelves on April 2, MR. GUM will retail for $2.95 and feature 24 pages of full-color art.