13 Reasons You Gotta Go to MoCCA This Weekend

Big doings this weekend in New York.

Noelle Stevenson

Noelle Stevenson

The big indie comics show is this weekend in Manhattan. (Click here for tickets and info and whatnot.) Many publishers will be well represented and I’m personally glad to see Sonny Liew of The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye and Doctor Fate in town. But one of the highlights will also be the presence of Z2 Comics, which has been generating a lot of buzz over the last year. So here’s Josh Frankel, co-publisher of the company: — Dan


Hi, my name is Josh Frankel, one of the publishers of Z2 Comics and this weekend I’ll be at MoCCA Arts Festival 2016, along with many of the amazing writers and artists of Z2 Comics. We’re super-excited for this show. Why? Well 13th Dimension’s editor Dan Greenfield was nice enough to lend me his soapbox for 13 Reasons You Gotta Go to MoCCA This Weekend:

1. If you love discovering indie comics, MoCCA is amazing. First off MoCCA was the first convention Z2 ever had a table at (back when we were called Zip and I was self-publishing my own, eh, comics). Now we publish almost everything from a lot of way-more talented creators than me: all-ages comics, crime comics, humor comics, sci fi comics… If it’s a comic and it’s great, we publish it — except superheroes, we stay away from capes like the plague.

We publish comics that are #artistowned and we’re proud of it. What I mean by that is that the artists/creators of the books get to see their vision put on the page. Personally I think it’s a great way to work (but I may be biased). Even if you haven’t read our comics or watched the stunning animated short Welcome to Showside by Ian McGinty, well, there will be plenty of cool folks on hand, including the Center for Cartoon Studies, The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund


2. It’s in a cool hood. It’s right by the High Line. As their website says, with the new expansion of the 7 line, it’s even easier to get there. Also the best doughnuts in town are right nearby: Head to the West Side Highway and in the carwash is Underwest Doughnuts. Say hi to the owner Scotty, he rocks!

3. You can meet indie comic-book writers and artists without waiting in crazy long lines. This year MoCCA has two floors of exhibitor tables, a gallery of original art and pop-up cafés. Guests include Cece Bell, who received the Newberry Medal Honor for her graphic novel El Deafo, and Sonny Liew.


4. There’s No Better Setting for Comics than New York. Artist Sean Von Gorman will be at MoCCA in support of Pawn Shop, a very NY graphic novel. Meanwhile writer/ artist Koren Shadmi will be signing copies of his graphic novel The Abaddon, the story of a young man who finds himself trapped in a bizarre apartment with a group of ill-matched roommates. It doesn’t get any more New York than that.


5. Amazing Programming. Bill Kartalopoulos did the programming for MoCCA this year and he is possibly the most erudite guy in comics. I am personally looking forward to the Autobiography: Revealing the Self in Comics with Gabrielle Bell (Truth is Fragmentary); Nicole Georges (Calling Dr. Laura); Jennifer Hayden (The Story of My Tits); and Gina Wynbrandt (Someone Please Have Sex With Me). Moderated by Heidi MacDonald.

6. #MakeComics. There’s also a MoCCA panel dedicated to Making Comics for Younger Readers. Get them while they’re young, like cigarettes except comics are good for children (I think…)

7. Rebecca Sugar. STEVEN UNIVERSE!!!!!!!!! Enough said. Z2 Comics does not publish Rebecca Sugar but if she is reading this: Rebecca — We would give you almost anything that does not involve sacrifices to the dark and horrible elder gods to do so (OK, maybe a small sacrifice).

8. Get an early taste of the next, next thing everyone will be talking about this year. Miss Lasko-Gross (Henni) will be on hand to get the word out on her unabashedly feminist new series The Sweetness, which she co-created with her husband Kevin Colden (Fishtown). The Sweetness is as offbeat and dark as Miss is kind and sweet. Guess it’s an inverse proportion.


9. Comics matter. I was in France right after Charlie Hebdo and we can’t forget that people die for their art. Don’t miss a discussion titled You Can Get Killed Doing This: Sketches from the Satire Biz, exploring what it is to make satire in a post-Charlie Hebdo-massacre world.

10. There will be fantastical art. There will be a limited edition 11 X 17 poster for Indoctrination, the new Z2 Comics series about America’s terrifying underbelly of death cults and sleeper cells, serial killers and apocalyptic nightmares by writer and novelist Michael Moreci (Roche Limit, Burning Fields) and artist and former political operative Matt Battaglia. These are going for 20 bucks a pop and they’ll go fast. Here’s a sneak peak…


11. Tyler Boss. Tyler is the killer young artist of the upcoming Black Mask book 4 Kids Walk Into a Bank. He is massively talented to the point where it makes me worry about how good he will actually get. Like if he gets much better will his head explode from the genius. He also designs all of the Z2 Books, so that should say how much I trust this young star.

12. Cats and dogs rule. Uh, why do bring this up? In the upcoming Z2 Comics title Legend, dogs and cats literally rule the world. But can they rebuild it? Novelist Samuel Sattin and award-winning illustrator Chris Koehler have created a new comic-book series where cat technology rules, dogs partner with hawks, and humans may be the most beastly creatures of all. And this super exclusive Legend print will be at MoCCA.


13. Five dollars. Did I mention it only costs $5 a day to get in? See you there.

For more info on Z2 Comics, click here. For more info on MoCCA Fest and the Society of Illustrators, click here.


Author: Dan Greenfield

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