Thursday, October 21, 2010

SOLD OUT! Oh, and Top Hats too.

I just found out that the first print run of the Helm has official SOLD OUT! A second print run is in the works at Dark Horse and should be hitting shelves soon. So now I can officially say that the Helm is entering its second American printing and about to enter its first French printing. In fact, I have already said that, not just in the preceding sentence, but on the first page of the Helm website! There's some self promotion for you!

In other news, Halloween is coming up and I still don't know what I'm going to be. Last year, I was Abe Lincoln, but I don't think I can do Abe two years running. I also don't want to be a Ringmaster again. Maybe I'll be Sir Topham Hatt.

Do you see a theme there? A connecting element? That's right, I'm a man who owns a collapsible silk Top Hat, which enables me to play any character known for having a silk top hat. But I am getting tired of hat based costumes. Maybe I'll have to think outside the hat this year. I'll keep you posted as the event draws closer.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Thong Wars!

Well! Thong Wars have begun on the Helm website. That's right, due to popular demand, there are now two stylish Helm themed thongs to choose from. And in true Helm style, they are all about conflict.
The first is the warm and inviting "Welcome Warrior" thong on which Jill and Mathew are depicted in a sexy clinch from issue #2 of The Helm. The second is the harsh and combative "Entry Denied" thong on which Jill is seen kneeing Mathew in the testicles from issue #3. So, pick up one, or both, and signal your intent to all who glimpse your Helm thong!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Stuff! Helm Stuff That Is!

Yup, we got stuff. Due to the crushing volume of fan requests, we have begun to offer Helm merchandise on The Helm website. What kind of merchandise, you ask? Well, mostly t-shirts, but there's also a coffee mug, a baseball cap, a bumper sticker and a thong. Yes, that's right, the only authorized Helm branded thong on the market is available right now at the Helm Store page. So, if you are in the mood for an awesome bit of Helm related memorabilia that will clearly indicate, like a blinding banner, that you are cool beyond measure, then head on over to the link below and blow your monthly bankroll on some stuff. Helm stuff that is.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Babies, Flaming Swords, Father's Day

So, I was just posting a review of Babies on The Flaming Sword. Babies is a very good documentary which I saw on Saturday night as a kind of early Father's Day thing. If you haven't seen Babies yet, it tracks the lives of four babies across the globe from birth to around a year old. I'd suggest seeing it. Although nothing explodes and no one fends off zombies with a broken 2 by 4 and a length of iron chain, it is worth seeing on the big screen because it has some really beautiful photography in it. It's not exactly what I was expecting, which is good. It was better than what I expected.

Anyway, just thought I'd make a note of it.

Oh, and if you've got an iPad and you've checked out the iPad version of the Helm, let me know what it's like. I tried to get an iPad but they were completely sold out. Not just partially sold out, or even mostly sold out, but completely, totally sold out. So, no iPad Helm for me.

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Helm in French and iPhone!!

New Helm news!

The Helm is going to be published in French language print and digital versions for France, Belgium, Switzerland and Canada by French publisher Bragelonne! And, as if that's not enough, both Comixology and Panelfly began offering the Helm for iPhone and iPad on June 18th, 2010!

So, now you can read The Helm on your iPhone, or in France, or even on your iPhone in France! Holy crap! Maybe Jerry Lewis will read even it now. He's been pretty busy lately, but with the whole French connection, who knows?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


So, looks like I'll be attending the SDCC this year. Anybody else got SDCC plans?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Flaming Sword

Hey folks,

There's a new page up on the Helm Website: The Flaming Sword. It's a review site where Mathew and the Helm rave or rant about books, movies, TV, music, games or whatever. The inaugural review is of the movie Kick Ass. Check out the page and see how many flaming swords the boys gave the movie by clicking this link: FLAMER

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Mint Condition Copy of The Helm Available for $1.5 Million

That's right. And what's more, I have several mint condition copies of The Helm available at this astonishingly good price so that anyone with $1.5 million can buy their own. You see, The Helm is not just for the elite few, it is a comic book for regular folks--especially those who happen to have $1.5 million to spend on a single graphic novel.

Now, I know what you're thinking. $1.5 million? Isn't that a Yes, you're right. If I go by the popular pricing model, I'm undervaluing mint condition copies of The Helm by nearly $223.5 million. So, what am I thinking? Yes, I know that Action Comics #1 originally sold for only ten cents and it just went at auction for $1.5 million, whereas The Helm has a list price of $14.95--that's nearly 150 times more than Action Comics #1. I know that means that The Helm should sell for almost $225 million--it's just simple math. Even a rat could figure that out. Well, a genetically modified rat with an enlarged brain capable of conceptualizing the idea of math and then doing simple calculations like multiplication. But, and this is important to me, I want The Helm to remain a graphic novel for the masses. If I restrict the book only to people who can afford to pay hundreds of millions of dollars for it, I'll be limited to a pretty small audience. Sure, I'd only need to sell four or five copies a year to maintain my modest lifestyle, but I'd miss the satisfaction of knowing the book was being read not just by a handful of chortling billionaires but by dozens of other, less massively wealthy (but still rich) people.

Also, I'd have to live with the serious possibility that people who could afford to pay $225 million for a copy wouldn't actually read it, but would probably put it in a vault or something so as to protect their investment. I didn't write The Helm so that it could languish in Bill Gate's or Phil Knight's comics vault (no offense Bill or Phil--having been in both your comics vaults, I understand and respect what you are doing.) I wrote The Helm so that fantastically wealthy teenagers could delight in its pages. So that ostentatiously rich 40-year-old males with great computer but poor social skills could thrill to the adventures of Mathew Blurdy. I wrote The Helm so that people with the modest sum of $1.5 million dollars to spend on a single comic book could enjoy a full graphic novel just like people with hundreds of times that much money.

And so, as a matter of principle, I won't accept a penny over $1.5 million for a mint condition copy of The Helm. Unless it is autographed.

Monday, March 29, 2010

PLA Signing

Just wanted to say thanks to all the folks who stopped by the Dark Horse booth at the Public Library Association show at the Oregon Convention Center for The Helm signing. It was great meeting you all! And thanks again to YALSA for naming The Helm one of the top ten Great Graphic Novels for Teens of 2010.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Hair, the PLA and Some Musings

So, after viewing my glorious Google Analytics results, I see that the couple of posts that I've done about hair continue to be the most viewed posts on this blog. Which is rewarding because I only wrote those posts after reading an article that said that blogs about hair were the most commonly searched and read items on the internet.

This suggests that if I want any news to get read in the Helm blog that I should make sure to include some prominent reference to hair in it. Which is not what I'm doing now, although it is what I am doing now.

In non-hair related news, it looks like I will be doing a signing at the PLA (Public Library Association) convention in Portland later this month! I love those Library Association people. Librarians I guess. Ever since the YALSA people put The Helm on their Top Ten Great Graphic Novels for Teens list, sales have been up and lots of new people have been visiting the Website. So, here's a shout out to all of the Helm reading Librarians out there! THANKS! And, WAY TO GO!

One small thing. When Dark Horse asked me to do a signing at the PLA show, I thought for a second they were talking about the PLA of the PLO. Of course, the Palestine Liberation Organization is not connected to the Public Library Association as far as I'm aware except for by the P and the L. But, since the PLO was founded the year I was born, and since the PLA is the military wing of the PLO, you can see why I was concerned. Anyway, it got me thinking that it might be cool if there was a Public Library Army that served as the militant wing of the Public Library. They could make sure overdue book fines are paid on time or really throw down on folks who don't read enough books. Or attack people who bend down the corners of pages to mark where they are in books. That's defacing literature.

Another small concern--while the PLA stands for the Public Library Association (a division of the American Library Association), there is also a PLA that stands for the Punjab Library Association. I'd hate to have anyone confuse the two. That's the trouble with those three letters. They're really popular for organization names. Not only do we have the Palestine Liberation Army and the Punjab Library Association to worry about, there's also the Party of Labor of Albania (which really ought to be the PoLoA) as well as the Port of London Authority, the Phone Losers of America and the Pre-school Learning Alliance. And I'm not even getting into the computer science Principle of Least Astonishment (which really ought to be PoLA).

But, I digress. Or, at least I would be digressing if this entry actually had a point from which I could veer. But it doesn't, so technically, I don't.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Community Booster and a Plea to the Neilsen Families

I read in today's paper (the Oregonian) that the show Community (NBC, Thursday nights) is not doing well in the ratings and might not be picked up for another season. NO! So, here's me being a Community booster. The show is really funny and it would be a shame if it was cancelled because of low ratings. Not just a shame, it would be stupid.

The title comes from the fact that the show is set at a community college where a disbarred lawyer is struggling to get his college degree and his life back in order as the leader of a pack of nerdy misfits. May not sound hilarious, but much hilarity ensues. The show features Chevy Chase--which may be a turn off for some people, but he's really funny on Community--although he's by no means the star. The rest of the cast are all great and each character has their own funny subplots and back stories built around their particular reason for being at a community college. Plus, the show just has a lot of tight, snarky, pop culture humor that makes it a blast to watch. They've already had a character dressed as the Beastmaster while whacked out on a combination of Viagra and hallucinogenic drugs for God's sake! And the very funny actor Ken Jeong (Knocked Up, Pineapple Express, Role Models, the Hangover and Couples Retreat) is great as the Asian Spanish teacher Senor Chang.

Apart from all of that, I love the show because it reminds me of my own experience at community college. Yes, that's right. I went to Harper College for a year when I was trying to "figure out what to do with my life" but before I had embarked on the path that eventually led to my current, fabulous career. And you know what? It was just like Community (only less funny at the time.)

So, skip Vampire Diaries (aren't we all getting tired of angsty, good-looking-vampire-boy-toys?) or record it, and watch Community. Especially you Nielsen Ratings families.

In fact, as long as you Nielsen Ratings families are reading this, can you please just start watching better shows in general? You guys watch some real crap and it winds up getting a bunch of great shows (that I'm sure scads of other people are watching) cancelled. Really, do us all a favor and please try some more science fiction, some more horror, some more great comedy. Expand your horizons. The world of television has so much to offer you...


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Blitzkrieg of the Flower People

So, I've gotten twenty-nine emails in the past two days from various on-line flower shops trying desperately to remind me that Valentine's Day is approaching and I will feel like a robot-style cold-blooded jerk if I don't send a big bunch of flowers to everyone I know, but especially my wife.

Twenty-nine emails is such a dramatic jump in the volume of communications from the flower people over previous years that it has started me speculating that maybe they are in severe financial straights or something. You know, what with the recent global economic meltdown and the toughest financial conditions since the Great Depression.

Ah, the Great Depression. I've been hearing an awful lot of references to the Great Depression lately--but somehow, the conditions I see around me don't seem to really stack up to that level of global calamity and misfortune. Sure, times are tough--don't get me wrong--but they're not as tough as they were for as many people. Folks are still buying Taco Bell and Oreo Cookies. Still watching enough DVD's to keep those red kiosks in business and ensure that Lion King Two is never available to rent when my kids want to watch it.

Of course, all of this depression era thinking and self reflection has got me wondering about whether people even celebrated Valentine's Day during the Great Depression or whether it's just another one of those holidays made up by the greeting card, candy and flower people to milk us out of more of our hard earned cash during a global economic crisis in which we need it more than ever. Boy, they would sure be robot-style cold-blooded jerks if they were up to something as nefarious as that!

Well, as it turns out, Valentine's Day isn't just a recent addition to the calendar and people were celebrating it, not just during the Great Depression, but since 496 AD. Which is a while ago. I mean, 496 AD makes Valentine's Day a contemporary of Christmas. That's old.

So, anyway, I guess that's legitimate enough to clear the names of the greeting card, candy and flower people this time. They didn't manufacture the holiday out of whole cloth the way they did with Secretary's Day and the Fourth of July. Still, twenty-nine emails is about twenty-eight emails too many. Enough with the constant bombardment! My wife doesn't want flowers! That would be too easy.

Friday, January 29, 2010

I got a Brazilian

That's right! I got a Brazilian. It makes me blush a little to say so because I'm modest, but it's true.

I was checking the stats on the Helm Website and saw that someone from Sao Paulo, Brazil was on the site! I don't know who it was specifically, but I have my suspicions.

Now, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "Hey, isn't Brazil the fifth largest nation by population? Don't they have something like 192 million people living there and more than 10 million of them in Sao Paulo alone?"

Well, aren't you a cynical smarty pants. Yes, they have all of those people there, but how many of them read comic books? And really, how many of them would enjoy the Helm so much that they'd check out the website? There's only maybe three or four possibilities. In Sao Paulo, I mean. The Helm is absolutely huge amongst the 67 or so uncontacted tribes of Brazil, but they don't have computers with which to visit the Website. We air drop the copies to them after translating them into the various native dialects.

Anyway, given the browser my Brazilian used, and that he is in Sao Paulo, I think it's probably Luiz. In fact, it pretty much has to be Luiz. I'm not going to tell you his last name because I respect his privacy.

Anyway, that's my Brazilian!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The North Face and the South Butt

My new South Butt jacket came today. Haven't heard of the South Butt? They're the guys who are being sued by the North Face becasue they just took the North Face logo, turned it upside down and started their own company. They're kind of the opposite of the North Face. Where North Face says "Never stop exploring," The South Butt counters with "Never stop relaxing." That is my philosophy in a nutt shell--which is where I like to keep my philosophy.
I love the South Butt. But, like I said, they are getting sued by the North Face. In general, the suit has been pretty good for South Butt's business, but the very real possibility exists that they could get sued out of business. They are currently looking for supporters in court, so go to their site and check it out to see what you can do. In the meantime, you might consider writing to North Face and letting them know that it makes them look really uncool to be suing young Jimmy Winkelmann, founder of the South Butt. I know Haiti is kind of a priority right now, but we can't let the South Butt, and young Jimmy, slip through the cracks.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The Rutles

I've been listening to the Rutles again lately and I've got to say that there is some really exceptional music on All You Need Is Cash. In particular, the song I Cannot Stay Another Day is just a great song all the way around. It really takes some musical crafting to include the word pusillanimous in a song and have it work both lyrically and intellectually.

Double Back Alley is also an exceptional song, not just as a Beatles parody, but in it's own right. The Rutles were/are geniuses. I feel like starting a Rutles tribute band. Maybe I could call it the Buttles. We could cover both Rutles songs and Beatles songs. That would be something.

Anyway, if you've never checked out the Rutles--either their albums or their fake-u-mentary, you should. Follow this here link: it will be well worth your time. And that's not even my opinion. That's a fact. You can find that in the bible.

Okay, enough. I have to go watch Chuck. New episode tonight and I've got it on my PVR/DDR/TIVO/whatever they're calling hard disk recorders these days.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Helm is an ALA Top Ten Great Graphic Novel for Teens 2010

I just got a nice email from the chairperson of the Great Graphic Novels for Teens committee of the American Library Association letting me know that The Helm has been selected as one of the top ten Great Graphic Novels for Teens for 2010. Whoo Hooo!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Gronland, The Helm and the Largest Island on Earth

Well, the emails from Greenland have been pouring in to the extent that my server was overwhelmed and my whole system crashed. Thank you, Greenlanders, for the outpouring of interest and support, but please lay off for a while--I've got work to do and can't handle the pressure.

I didn't think there were any Helm readers in Greenland until now, but boy was I wrong. I guess I should have expected more from the largest island on Earth! You Gronlanders (as the Danish would say) are alright in my book--even if you don't really consider yourselves part of North America despite the geography. Go Kalaallit Nunaat!

That is all.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

The Helm and Greenland

So, it's a brand new year and the start of a new decade. And still, the Helm site hasn't had any visitors from Greenland. What the heck? Well, maybe this will be the decade that opens the floodgates of visitors from Greenland. Anyone out there in Greenland, give a shout out.