Publisher’s Weekly “The Fanatic” previews The Silent Invasion

Great News! The Great Fear, Book 2 of The Silent Invasion is released this month (May)! The Fanatic, Publisher’s Weekly’s online newsletter about graphic novels contains a special preview of The Great Fear. Check it out
 here (then scroll down to the Panel Mania section at the bottom of the page. and click on the image for the full preview).

Stay tuned and, watch the skies!!

For more information on The Silent Invasion click here.

You can follow us on Facebook as well.

You can find Larry’s previous blog posts here

And posts by Michael Cherkas, here

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The Silent Invasion at TCAF: Get your free bookmark!

One thing Michael Cherkas and I have always enjoyed is producing new promotional material to help people to remember our books. This year at TCAF (May 11 and 12, 2019 in Toronto) we will be handing out nifty bookmarks.

We have not yet finalized the design for this year’s bookmark but here are the back and front of a bookmark we did for our previous presence at TCAF in 2012!

Please come and see us at the NBM table at TCAF!

In my next blog post I will tell you about some of the other promotional material we have produced over the years! And we’ll soon be able to tell you about other stops on our 2019 World Tour!

For more information on The Silent Invasion click here.

For more information on TCAF click here.

You can follow us on Facebook as well.

You can find Larry’s previous blog posts here

And posts by Michael Cherkas, here

The Silent Invasion at TCAF

Can’t wait to get your copy of The Silent Invasion: The Great Fear? The second volume of The Silent Invasion series will be available in May.

Michael Cherkas and Larry Hancock will be appearing at TCAF – the Toronto Comic Arts Festival on Saturday and Sunday May 11 and 12, 2019. We will be at the NBM table signing copies of our book and chatting with our eager fans!

For more information on The Silent Invasion click here.

For more information on TCAF click here.

You can follow us on Facebook as well.

You can find Larry’s previous blog posts here

And posts by Michael Cherkas, here

UFOs, Flying Saucers, Conspiracies and Union City

Many fans and readers have asked us (all right, maybe one or two) “Where is the Union City that we see in The Silent Invasion?” Now is a good a time as any to try to answer this burning question.

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As you can see by the sign in the above panel, Union City is miles from “Rockhaven” (see “The Rockhaven Conspiracy” in our upcoming book The Great Fear), but only a short drive from Endicott which is just down the road from Johnson City and Binghamton, New York. However, Orangeville is northwest of Toronto. Obviously the aliens have been messing with our universe.

It is a place dripping with paranoia.

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The Union City found in The Silent Invasion is not located in New Jersey, California or Ohio. It could be located in Ohio—but not where the real Union City, Ohio is on the border of Indiana. And it’s not in Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Michigan, Montana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania or Tennessee (other states that have places named Union City).

Our Union City is a place where the streets are have no names and are devoid of life. Buildings tower and twist over the few brave souls who venture out into the lonely night where newspapers blow through the empty streets.

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When we set out to create The Silent Invasion, Larry and I both wanted to set the series in a generic comic book city much like Superman’s Metropolis, Batman’s Gotham City or The Spirit’s Central City. It would be a place that was fairly large, close to a million people in population. It would be located in a fictional part of America that’s not far from deserts, mountains, cottage country or rolling farmland. Union City is close to whatever setting a particular story demands.

And of course it’s always 1957, whether the actors in our stories like it or not.

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But where in that fictional America? We like to think it’s located on one of the Great Lakes. No deserts or mountains nearby, but it’s an alternate universe. How do we know that? Because in The Silent Invasion Union City is one of 12 American cities to have a franchise in a 24-team Canadian Football League. More on this in a future post for all you CFL fans out there!

In this page from a new story set in 1970, we see Walter Sinkage’s work pals trying to get him to watch a game between the Union City Pipefitters and the Sarnia Imperials.

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At the end of the day, I think our real inspiration for Union City was Buffalo, New York.

I grew up in Oshawa, Ontario; Larry in nearby Whitby. They’re on the north shore of Lake Ontario, about 50 kilometres east of Toronto and almost directly north of Buffalo. As kids, we watched American television coming out of Buffalo. American TV was always more exciting than the fare being served on Canadian channels. Commander Tom was on at 3:30 showing the old Superman TV show; Irv Weinstein read the news on Channel 7; and there always seemed to be a fire somewhere in Buffalo with “film at eleven!”

And Toronto didn’t start to become exciting until at least 1967, maybe even a few years later.

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Larry has said Union City might be located somewhere on the south shore of Lake Ontario between Buffalo and Rochester.

But I think the real location is in the dusty corners of our imaginations…

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Remember to watch the skies!

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For more information on The Silent Invasion click here.

UFO Aliens Seize Farmer and Steal His Brain!!!

With the upcoming release of NBM’s new reprint of The Silent Invasion: The Great Fear, we thought we’d share a few covers from the original floppy comics published by Renegade Press way back in the summer of 1987 during the last century. Because I worked—and still do work—as a graphic designer, I treated the covers as as mini-experiments in design. Sales were “fair to middling,” so we determined we really had nothing to lose.

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Issue 7 featured the “crazy farmer.” We wanted the cover to emulate one of those trashy National Enquirer-like supermarket tabloids, since at this point in the story, our hero—Matt Sinkage—is moonlighting for a similar publication. The crazy farmer is a real person—a work colleague at the time—who decided it would be fun and hilarious to photo-copy his face using the new photocopier the design studio had just purchased. (Graphic designers really know how to have fun.) I took the image and continued to copy it until it had been degraded to coarse black and white areas, with no grey-tones.

Covers_7-8

With number 8, I thought I’d go for the old Life magazine look, and was only moderately successful. Looking back, the image should have been black and white and preferably a photo, but where we going to get a real person to pose as Matt Sinkage? Then with number 9, the explosion was used to “deconstruct” the standard cover elements, harkening back to one of my favourite old-time DC covers (Batman 194 by Carmine Infantino and Murphy Anderson). My attempt at this was not nearly as dramatic.

In a future post, we’ll look at the covers for issues 10, 11 and 12.

Next time: Where is Union City, and why does it always seem to be 1957 in The Silent Invasion?

And remember to watch the skies!!!

For more information on The Silent Invasion click here.

You can follow us on Facebook as well.

 

 

The Silent Invasion: The Great Fear coming in May!

The Silent Invasion: The Great Fear full coverI see Stefan has posted the great news that NBM will be releasing The Great Fear, Book 2 of The Silent Invasion in May! Michael Cherkas and I are incredibly excited about this imminent release! Stefan has posted the front cover of the book, but I wanted to share Michael’s full cover design with you …..

There are some great reviews mentioned on the back cover and I want to highlight those for you in my next blog post!

For more information on The Silent Invasion click here.

You can follow us on Facebook as well.

You can find Larry’s previous blog posts here

And posts by Michael Cherkas, here

The Silent Invasion – Podcast interview on PW Comics World: More to Come

Michael and Larry were interviewed about  The Silent Invasion by Calvin Reid at SPX for the Publishers Weekly podcast “More to Come.” The interview is included in More to Come 336 released September 21, 2018. It is available on several platforms, but you can find it here. Our segment begins at the 42 minute mark.

After you have finished listening, remember to watch the skies!!

For more information on The Silent Invasion click here.

You can follow us on Facebook as well.

You can find Larry’s previous blog posts here

And posts by Michael Cherkas, here