131 episodes

The podcast that goes one-on-one with the writers, artists, retailers, publishers, critics and journalists inside the Toronto comic book scene.



Aaron Broverman has been collecting comics in earnest since 1995 and has been a fixture of the Toronto comic scene since 2003. He was there when big name artists for Marvel, DC and Image were selling their independent comics in artist alley at local Toronto conventions. Now, he hopes to use his interview skills as a professional journalist for NOW Magazine, BlogTO, Huffington Post, Vice and Yahoo to bring his connections in the local comic scene right to your ear for some in-depth, candid conversations on all things comic book.

Speech Bubble Aaron Broverman

    • Visual Arts
    • 4.9, 19 Ratings

The podcast that goes one-on-one with the writers, artists, retailers, publishers, critics and journalists inside the Toronto comic book scene.



Aaron Broverman has been collecting comics in earnest since 1995 and has been a fixture of the Toronto comic scene since 2003. He was there when big name artists for Marvel, DC and Image were selling their independent comics in artist alley at local Toronto conventions. Now, he hopes to use his interview skills as a professional journalist for NOW Magazine, BlogTO, Huffington Post, Vice and Yahoo to bring his connections in the local comic scene right to your ear for some in-depth, candid conversations on all things comic book.

    Graeme MacKay

    Graeme MacKay

    This conversation with The Hamilton Spectator's resident editorial cartoonist runs the gamut. Graeme Mackay (as Aaron learns, pronounced Mac-kai) is "The Last of the Mohicans." He has held his position since 1997 and,pre-COVID-19, was actually still been going into a newsroom when many of his editorial cartoonist colleagues either have been working from home for years or their positions have been eliminated entirely as newspapers tighten their belts.
    It's actually COVID-19 that forced Graeme to finally work from home and switch to digital drawing (something he would've had to do anyway as The Spectator was set to move offices later this year) and he and Aaron talk about that transition to digital and how Graeme is finding adjusting his technique after years of using traditional pen and ink.
    The two also talk about Graeme's serpentine route to working at The Spectator, from his interest in politics and glad-handing those in power to a brief stint in the deli section of Harrod's Department Store in London, England (and that time the late Dodi Fayed landed on the roof in his helicopter because he just had to have his favourite brand of mustard) to finally sending cartoons to various newspapers across Canada and being syndicated in many of them.
    They also talk about his earliest influences in cartooning, including the drawings of Richard Scary, and Graeme's uncanny ability to draw city skylines at just three years old. They talk about his earliest cartoons in the pages of Carelton University's student newspaper, the genius of Gary Larson's Farside and of course, Mad Magazine. The recent passing of Mort Drucker of The Usual Gang of Idiots there comes up as well.
    Meanwhile, both Aaron and Graeme share the fact that they were raised by television in common, which was another heavy influence on Graeme's career both in comedy with SCTV and in watching the news at a very early age.
    The two also discuss Graeme's favourite cartoons from his own work and the possibility of doing anthology or a "Best Of" somewhere down the line. Graeme talks about how supportive his editors have ever been and also those rare times his cartoons were spiked from publication. They discuss the fact that despite the fact he fears that the other shoe may one day drop and he may lose his job, he is a well respected cartoonist, having been featured in the "This Is Serious: Canadian Indie Comics" exhibit in early 2020 alongside Canadian comic book legends like Chester Brown, Seth and Fiona Smyth.
    Finally, not only do they talk about the way COVID-19 and the way the stay at home order is affecting Graeme's work, but also his part in "The Cartoonists Against COVID-19" social media exhibit spearheaded by The Association of Canadian Cartoonists to show solidarity with front line workers and to promote the work of the famous Canadian editorial cartoonists who may have lost work due to the pandemic. Then, the two wonder about whether maybe this pandemic will shake up the capitalist system in a good way. This episode is once again sponsored by Hairy Tarantula.
    Graeme Mackay's Website
    Graeme Mackay on Facebook
    Graeme Mackay's YouTube Channel
    Graeme Mackay, Wes Tyrell, Matt Weurker and Cartoonists Against COVID-19 on Politico
    #cartoonistsagainstcovid
    The Association of Canadian Cartoonists
    Our conversation with Graeme's friend and fellow editorial cartoonist Wes Tyrell
    Sponsor
    Hairy Tarantula - Buy Comics online

    • 2 hrs 7 min
    Chris Sanagan

    Chris Sanagan

    If you recently watched the mailbag episode of Cartoonist Kayfabe spotlighting Group of 7 off the top or you listened to our episode with Group of 7 artist Jason Lapidus, this is the episode that will complete the Group of 7 trifecta because Chris Sanagan is the writer of Group of 7.
    Chris lives in Guelph, Ontario but spent many of his younger years as a Bay Street broker in Toronto before persuing a career as a historical achivist. You'll learn from this episode that Chris came up with the idea for Group of 7 after realizing that seven legendary Caadians were all fighting in Europe during WWI at the same time. With those Canadians as chess pieces, a sensibility taken from works like League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and the artistry of one of his best friends in the world, he's able to put together a pretty compelling package for any comic fan who also digs Canadian history.
    In the coversation, Chris highlights how all those elements came together – in particular, how he and artist Jason Lapidus first met – and their plans for the next Group of 7 storyline after the first six issues, which have recently been collected into graphic novel form as, Group of 7: A Most Secret Tale. It's available for purchase in May 2020. This episode of Speech Bubble is sponsored by Hairy Tarantula – check out their online store Speech Bubble is on Patreon Donate and support us now
    @chrissangan
    @groupof7comics
    @ChrisSangan
    @groupof7comics on Twitter
    Group of 7 Online
    Buy the Graphic Novel
    Group of 7 on Facebook
    Where Chris Sanagan Works – Archives Ontario
    Group of 7 artist Jason Lapidus on Speech Bubble
    Group of 7 on Cartoonist Kayfabe with Jim Rugg and Ed Piskor
    Sponsors
    Hairy Tarantula

    • 59 min
    Al Ewing

    Al Ewing

    Al Ewing is best known as the writer behind the critically-acclaimed comic series Immortal Hulk. It's a comic nominated for the Eisner Award for Best Continuing Series in 2019. In the time before proximity precautions and the COVID-19 pandemic, Al Ewing was booked to appear at the Toronto Comicon. The convention was eventually postponed – along with every other public gathering – but before it was, Aaron had this conversation with Al in promotion of his con appearance.
    As a result, it's a little different than the typical conversations Speech Bubble fans have become accustomed to. Since Al lives across the pond in the UK, this chat is the first this podcast had recorded over the phone and Aaron was given a tight 20 minutes to speak with him. (obviously, Al Ewing is a very busy man)
    Never the less, when you get an opportunity to speak with Al Ewing, writer of, in Aaron's opinion, the best comic book Marvel is publishing right now and, as he told Chip Zdarsky, one of the top three writers working at Marvel – you don't say, no.
    So here we are. Though his accent can make him difficult to understand at times, you're in for a great and rare conversation. Obviously, the two talk about Immortal Hulk, and how the decision to make the big green monster immortal came to be, but they also dive into Ewing's earliest relationship with comics and his transition from fan to professional. You'll also hear what he actually thinks about the comparisons between Immortal Hulk and Alan Moore's classic, Saga of the Swamp thing?
    Plus, get a little taste of what it's like writing the next big Marvel Event – Avengers/Fantastic Four Empyre – with Dan Slott. (Iron Man, Fantastic Four)
    This episode is sponsored by Hairy Tarantula and Project I.M.P.A.C.T. – a new Canadian superhero comic with issues #1 and #2 available on Comixology.
    Speech Bubble is also now on Patreon
    @Al_Ewing
    Al Ewing on Marvel
    Al Ewing on Wikipedia
    The interview with Jim Zub referenced on this episode
    Sponsors
    Hairy Tarantula
    Project I.M.P.A.C.T.

    • 22 min
    Becka Kinzie

    Becka Kinzie

    In the first Speech Bubble podcast episode during the COVID_19 Pandemic, (complete with social distancing essentials like Zoom) Becka Kinzie joins our show. Becka is directly connected to our last guest Chip Zdarsky and his friend, previous Speech Bubble guest Kagan McLeod, since she was the colour flatter on Kaptara.
    Becka explains what a colour flatter does on this podcast, but that's not her only gig. She hails from Kitchener-Waterloo where she shepherds the web comic turned graphic novel Gehenna. The first, of what she reveals on this episode is a planned series of Gehenna comics, is called Death Valley. Think Scooby Do and the mystery gang with actual horror and violence thrown in. (at least, that's how Becka describes it)
    Her fascination with, and love of, horror comes from being raised in a conservative household and not being able to watch anything that was deemed too scary or too violent and then going hog wild on that stuff in her adulthood. In her teens, she was heavily influenced by things like Lenore: The Cute Little Dead Girl by Roman Dirge and Johnny the Homicidal Maniac by Jhonen Vasquez and those influences definitely seeped into her work, along with a splash of anime, manga and Hanna-Barbera cartoons.
    Along with talking about Gehenna: Death Valley, Becka gives us a sneak preview of her upcoming project co-written with Speech Bubble “almost” guest Bob Salley. It's called The Beholden and will be published by Source Point Press, an independent publisher out of Detroit, Michigan. This episode of Speech Bubble is sponsored as always by Hairy Tarantula and Bam Coffee Co..
    Speech Bubble is also now on Patreon where you can get audio blogs from host Aaron Broverman and a breakdown of Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #310 by Chip Zdarsky for just $3 per month at www.patreon.com/speechbubblepod.
    @the_becka on Instagram
    @the_becka on Twitter
    Becka Kinzie's website
    Becka Kinzie on the True North Country Comics Podcast
    An Elegant Weapon Podcast (Mentioned on this episode)
    Sponsors
    Hairy Tarantula
    Bam Coffee Co.
    Find us on Patreon
    www.patreon.com/speechbubblepod

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Chip Zdarsky (Again!)

    Chip Zdarsky (Again!)

    Chip Zdarsky Returns to Speech Bubble! Last time host Aaron Broverman and writer/artist Chip Zdarsky got together on the podcast it was for a live episode celebrating podcast sponsor Hairy Tarantula's 25th anniversary in 2017. Let's just say...he's done a lot since then. When last we left Zdarsky, he was just about to release the first issue of Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man in two months. Since then, Peter Parker: Spider-Man has concluded, (and Zdarsky won an Eisner for his trouble) Sex Criminals is about to end its seven year, 32 issue run with a final, seven issue arc and Zdarsky is writing Daredevil and X-Men/Fantastic Four, as of this recording.
    He and Aaron talk about it all and literally everything in between (Invaders, Namor: The Best Defense, Marvel 2-in-1 and Spider-Man: Life Story). Listeners will learn how the pitch meeting for Daredevil at the Marvel Summit actually went, why Spider-Man: Life Story wasn't Marvel Universe: Life Story and what he thinks of people saying he should write the ongoing Fantastic Four title currently being written by Dan Slott. Plus, find out why Daredevil made it to the top of his “Character I'd Most Like to Write” list, how he feels about Sex Criminals ending (and what he and Matt Fraction might do when it does) and what lead to J. Jonah Jameison learning Spider-Man's secret idenity on his watch. Oh, and find out whether Kaptara with Kagan Mcleod will ever come back.
    Speech Bubble is sponsored by Hairy Tarantula, where you will find comics and role-playing games at 3456 Yonge Street, and Bam Coffee Co. where you can get 15% off your first Bam Box of freshly ground coffee, comics, prints and a mug by typing SB15 at checkout.
    SPEECH BUBBLE IS NOW ON PATREON - Sign-up to hear Chip Zdarsky break down the Eisner award-winning Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #310 (#21), which he wrote and drew. www.patreon.com/speechbubblepod
    @zdarsky on Twitter
    @zdarsky on Instagram
    ZDARSCO INC. -- What Do You Want™
    Subscribe to It's a Chip Zdarsky Newsletter, Okay?
    Chip's Tips
    Chip Zdarsky wants you to buy Daredevil
    Chip Zdarsky on CBC
    Chip's first appearance on Speech Bubble
    Sponsors
    Hairy Tarantula
    Bam Coffee Co.

    • 1 hr 20 min
    Michael DeForge

    Michael DeForge

    Born in Kingston, raised in Ottawa and living in Toronto, Michael DeForge is a multi-Ignatz and Doug Wright award winning and Eisner nominated alternative cartoonist. His body of work numbers many web comics, zines, mini comics, graphic novels, anthologies and gallery shows. He's also a prolific commercial illustrator, having done many gig posters, media illustrations, film screening announcements and album covers. He is so prolific that he's often publishing at least two comic works a year either with Koyama Press or Drawn and Quarterly, including the award-winning series Lose, as well as graphic novels Ant Colony, Sticks Angelica, Folk Hero, Brat and more recent works like Stunt, Leaving Richard's Valley and his latest work, coming out the day after this Speech Bubble episode's release, from Drawn and Quarterly – Familiar Face.
    Michael sits down with Aaron to talk about the issues brought up by Familiar Face, including its inspiration – the simple fact that much of our lives are at the mercy of technology whether we want it to be or not. DeForge also takes Aaron inside his early work drawing gig posters for the Ottawa punk scene for free concert tickets and tells him how he illustrated the music he heard. You'll learn what and who influences his signature art style, from pencils to inks, colours and panel construction. You'll hear his thoughts on the impending closure of Koyama Press and the story of how he first met its namesake publisher “Saint” Annie Koyama. Oh and how could we forget, his work as a designer on the Adventure Time cartoon. Michael tells the story of how he got the job and what he actually designed for each episode and he lets us know that his last work for the series will be found on the mini series, Adventure Time: Distant Lands. This episode of Speech Bubble is brought to you by Hairy Tarantula at 3456 Yonge St. for all your comic and role-playing needs and Bam Coffee Co. where you can get a Bam Box full of freshly roasted coffee and geek swag like prints and mini comics for 15% off by entering SB15 at checkout.
    @michael_deforge
    @michael.deforge
    MichaelDeforge.com
    Buy Michael DeForge's latest, Familiar Face
    Join Michael DeForge on tour March 2020
    Familiar Face Publisher, Drawn and Quarterly
    Stunt, Publisher Koyama Press
    Buy the Seripop gig posters that influenced Michael DeForge
    Michael DeForge on IMDB
    Michael DeForge on Chapters.Indigo.ca
    Michael DeForge's All Dogs Are Dogs at Saw Gallery 2015
    Sponsors
    Hairy Tarantula
    Bam Coffee Co.

    • 1 hr 15 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
19 Ratings

19 Ratings

mc_kim1200 ,

For the Love of Comic Books

I've been a comic fan since I was kid, I just loved the artwork and the cool stories. Growing up though I didn't know many other people my age (in fact none) who loved comic books. It wasn't until I was an adult and started meeting other people that I realized that A LOT of people felt passionate about the same characters that I loved. I'm glad Aaron Broverman another "kid" from Toronto like me is sharing his passion and love art, story and the people behind it.

Jonthan Kociuba ,

Inspiring podcast

This podcast really goes in depth with the process of making comics with the creators themselves. I learn soo much after every episode

IsItBrokenYet ,

Great Conversations About Local Talent

This podcast highlights comics writers and illustrators in and around the Toronto area. I didn't realize just how much of a Mecca Toronto is. And it's not just the Capes and Cowl comics, there are wonderful conversations about indie comics, important stories, and much more.

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