I had a great time interviewing cartoonist Ed Piskor, creator of Hip Hop Family Tree, about his influences and interests. He's 32 years old, but his knowledge of Silver Age and underground comics runs incredibly deep.
Ed Piskor says: "Pittsburgh magazine followed me around for a few weeks and put together a little piece on me and the Hip Hop comic. The highlight is going through my decrepit boyhood home for the first time in like 18 years and seeing artwork on the walls that survived."
I loved seeing Ed in this 8-minute film, which was produced by Dave Cole. Favorite quote: "There's not enough money in comics to listen to anybody. You should just do what the heck you wanna do."
Here's our own cartoonist Ed Piskor being interviewed at Columbus Museum of Art by Jared Gardner on March 24, 2013. It's great to hear him talk about his influences and interests in this hour long conversation.
Ed Piskor is the recipient of the Columbus Museum of Art and Thurber House 2013 Graphic Novelist Residency. He has drawn stories for underground comics legend Harvey Pekar, and published the book Wizzywig about the history of hacking. His current comic, Hip Hop Family Tree, is serialized at Boingboing.net. The first volume of Hip Hop Family Tree will be published this year by Fantagraphics.
[Video Link] I was thrilled to see our pal Ed "Brain Rot" Piskor in this great video about a fantastic old-school comic book store on Pennsylvania called New Dimension that actually sells used comic books!
Hey Mark. I'm not too sure what the comic shops look like in Cali, but
on the east coast, it seems like boxes and boxes of back issues, and
real estate costs have been clashing with stores and a lot of shops
have been relegated to selling collections, graphic novels, etc. Stuff
that fits on the bookshelf.
I have a couple really great cartoonist friends in Pittsburgh, who
brought me along to this store I've never been to, in the middle of
farm country, where this guy seems to be buying massive collections
from estates, and from shops that have gone out of business, and it
looks like he's figured out a way to make selling back issues work for
My pal Julie Sokolow thought it was worth filming and she cut a video together
of our trip there. Thought you might dig the geek fest.
In yesterday's Gweek podcast, Clive Thompson and I talked to Ed Piskor about his great new graphic Novel Wizzywig, about a young "dark side" hacker. I mentioned that I liked the scene featuring Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, who make an appearance as illegal blue box salesmen dressed in their Alice in Wonderland birthday party entertainer outfits. Ed kindly gave me permission to post the excerpt here.
Rolling Stone just announced something that we have known for a long time: Ed Piskor (our own Brain Rot cartoonist) is a hell of a talented cartoonist. I have an advance copy of his upcoming book, Wizzywig: Portrait of a Serial Hacker, and it is a masterpiece.
I'm going to be interviewing Ed on Gweek when his book comes out. For now, here's the publisher's description:
They say "What You See Is What You Get"... but Kevin "Boingthump" Phenicle could always see more than most people. In the world of phone phreaks, hackers, and scammers, he's a legend. His exploits are hotly debated: could he really get free long-distance calls by whistling into a pay phone? Did his video-game piracy scheme accidentally trigger the first computer virus? And did he really dodge the FBI by using their own wiretapping software against them? Is he even a real person? And if he's ever caught, what would happen to a geek like him in federal prison? Inspired by the incredible stories of real-life hackers, Wizzygig is the thrilling tale of a master manipulator - his journey from precocious child scammer to federally-wanted fugitive, and beyond. In a world transformed by social networks and data leaks, Ed Piskor's debut graphic novel reminds us how much power can rest in the hands of an audacious kid with a keyboard.