Joshua Fialkov brings The Bunker to print

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Posted February 12, 2014 by Guilherme Jacobs in Comic Books

Today sees the print release of the very well received The Bunker. Joshua Hale Fialkov’s crator-owned book, with the talented Joe Infurnari as the artirst, that was until today, a digital exclusive. The Bunker features 5 teenagers that find a bunker containing letters from their future selves, and all roads lead to the end of the world. The first issue, released today by Oni Press, comes with 48 pages of content, collecting the first 5 digital chapters into one book. And believe me, you’ll wanna read it.

We had a chance to talk to Fialkov and ask him where the inspiration for such a creative story came from, and the process of bringing The Bunker to print.  Oh, and we also got you some pretty looking pages from the first print issue.

WeTheNerdy: So, first of all, I really enjoy what you’re doing with The Bunker, I think it’s a very clever story. Can you talk a little about where the idea came from?bunker1

Joshua Hale Fialkov: A lot of it comes from fatherhood… I frequently marvel at the path that led me from the suburban doldroms of Pittsburgh, to a life as a professional writer in Los Angeles with a wife and kid. If any single thing had gone even slightly differently, none of this would be true. I’d just be some sad sack lawyer in Pittsburgh. But, I got into the college that pushed me to be a writer which pushed me into TV and a pilot that sold and then fell apart, which left me stranded with no money and miserable in LA in a building with a huge comic nerd next door who brought me back into comics which lead to me writing them and so on and so on. The question then becomes, if you could tell yourself these are the steps to take to get to where you’re going… would you? I don’t know the answer to that, and, y’know, that’s where I knew I had something.

WTN: Are there differences in your creative process when it comes to writing a creator-owned book, instead of something for a publisher, like say, Hunger?

JHF: Well, sure. With a book like Hunger I was given very specific parameters for what they wanted and where the story would start and stop. You have some freedom what comes in the middle, but, you’re playing with someone else’s toys. As much fun as that is, there’s just no comparison to making your OWN times.

WTN: I think bringing The Bunker to print is a really interesting move, specially because it felt like such a digital focused book, even though it doesn’t have those fancy transitions some of Marvel and DC’s digital first have. The way it was formatted, how one of them was given for free on comiXology at one point. Did you always intend to bring it to print eventually, or was it something you decided more recently?

JHL: We thought we’d eventually have a print collection. We were pretty shocked at the response over all and just how much of a desire to see a monthly printed collection we got. Even though we didn’t have all the fancy Thrillbent effects, we still went through a pretty lengthy process to get the book just right for print. Joe Infurnari is a genius and, like most genius, a glutton for punishment, and he really went all in on remastering the book.

bunker2WTN: There are a couple of changes to the print version of the book, such as the coloring and the remastering to traditional comic size. What motivated these changes?

JHL: Every store should thrive in the medium it’s delivered in. We devoted ourselves to the widescreen format with the book, and to really drive home the story beats, changing format was essential.

WTN: While the print version has coloring, it’s still monochromatic, as you’ve said before, and I think that was a brilliant choice, I love the way it was colored. Why did you choose to go for that style, instead of coloring it the “traditional” way, aiming towards photorealism?

JHL: That’s all Joe [Infurnari]. Joe’s a Fine Artist, interested in telling stories in most emotionally true way possible. I think he accomplishes that in his work in a way that so called photoreal art never can. You identify and feel for these characters because of their sparsity. You can deposit yourself into any of the characters and feel a sense of self-indentification. I honestly think that the move to ultra-detailed art is a lot of what’s driven people away from the business. We can no longer see ourselves in our comics, instead we see the actors or models that the characters are based on.


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Guilherme Jacobs