copacetic pittsburgh

comics zines  books 



 Storeyville - hardcover editionStoreyville
by Frank Santoro
introduction by Chris Ware
The best kept secret in the last twenty years of comics -- and the most important Pittsburgh related comics work -- is probably the 1995 tabloid newspaper format Storeyville.   A Whitmanesque epic poem in comics form, Storeyville was sui generis at the time of its release, revealing previously unexplored depths in the comics form.  For a closer look at this landmark work, we refer you to our review of this original release, here.  It is now, finally, twelve years later, being released in a deluxe hardcover edition complete with a 1200 word introduction by Chris Ware along with bonus back up features including an essay providing the history and context of its creation by Dan Nadel.  Highly recommended.
retail price - $24.95  copacetic price - $19.99

Wizzywig 2Wizzywig 2: Hacker
by Ed Piskor
The youngest old schooler on the block, Pittsburgher Ed Piskor, is back with the second volume (see below for info on the first) of his series chronicling the computer counterculture.  Expect intrigue, suspense, moral dilemmas, crazy late night antics, intimations of drug use, a bunch of brainiacs engaging in anti-authoritarian behaviors and more, all sharply delineated with Piskor's patented persnickety penwork and laid out in his relentless quadruplicate grid.  So confident is Mr. Piskor of the  appeal of this story that, in a fit of generosity, he has loaded the entire first half of this work onto his site, where you can peruse it at will, HERE.
retail price - $15.00   copacetic price  - $12.75

PhreakWizzywig, Volume 1: Phreak
by Ed Piskor
Pittsburgh's own, Ed Piskor, heretofore best know for his work with Harvey Pekar (Our Movie Year, Macedonia), has now busted out on his own with his new self-published series, Wizzywig.  This first 116-page square-format volume, Phreak, is dedicated to the exploits of those precursors to computer hackers, the phone phreaks.  As Robert Frost once wrote, "there is something that does not love a wall."  In the modern world, the definitive walls erected to protect private property are computer systems, specifically the codes that run them, and as such make for an irresistible target for that "something."  But before the internet was a gleam in its daddies' eyes, Ma Bell ruled the roost, and those dedicated to "getting over" the walls erected to keep them out of messing with the system spent their time figuring out how to outsmart and/or break into the telephone switching systems.   Ed Piskor tells their tale by agreggating various phreak legends into a single mythical figure in this engaging book of old school comics.  Learn more about our pal, Ed, and check out some Phreak preview pages, here.
retail price - $15.00  copacetic price - $13.50

Cold Heat Special 4

Cold Heat Special #4
by Frank Santoro & Jim Rugg
This time around we have a16-page tabloid newspaper comic book filled with further far out fables featuring Cassandra -- aka Castle -- cavorting with chaos.  Santoro and Rugg employ the large (22" x 17", when opened) "canvas" of the tabloid format to excellent effect, creating a feast for the eyes with finely rendered dramatic imagery that ranges from psychedlicized fast food bathroom interiors to landscapes of the rolling hills of (what appears to be) western PA, all in the service of a tale of temporal displacement that demonstrates that the past is still here, all around us, and that travelling through time is a simple matter of opening a door or two.  There may be some side effects, however...
retail price - $3.00  copacetic price - $2.00

Spunj BaahbSpunj Baahb
by Chris Cornwell
Are you looking for new, fun and smart, visually and intellectually stimulating, hand-made and independently  published comics work that's created right here in Pittsburgh, PA?  Well, if you are, you've come to the right place.  Spunj Baahb is the latest comics conundrum by Copacetic customer Chris Cornwell.  It's a 20-page, 8 1/2" x 11" black & white, saddle-stapled comics magazine printed on 28 lb. bright white stock with a two-color hand silk screened cover on sky blue cardstock.  Except for two pages of exposition wherein the work's themes are explicitly stated, the narrative unfolds entirely in Cornwell's ever evolving pictograhic language.  While cartoon characters such as Sponge-Bob Squarepants™ are commonly understood to represent the communal unconscious of the society that produced it, Spunj Baahb takes it a step further and posits the inner life of the cartoon character itself --  the dream within the dream, if you will -- and does so with much aplomb. 
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $4.00

Looking for the Joke
Looking for the Jokeby Chris Cornwell
Looking for the Joke is Cornwell's follow-up to I Wanna Destroy You, released earlier this year at S.P.A.C.E. (see below).  Following the same format as its predecessor, this 20-page, 8 1/2" x 11" comics magazine sports a hand silk-screened cover.   While continuing to explore similar concerns, LftJ provides solid evidence that Cornwell's vision and skills are in the process of evolving and advancing.  Where IWDY  contained a churning osmosis of concepts, LftJ is obviously bipartate in structure, as it is split into two distinct, separate stories:  "Herbman and/versus Dog-Dude," and "They Took It with Them."  It appears that the artistic equivalent of cell-division has taken place.  The question is whether the division was meiotic or mitotic, or, perhaps, at least in part, some novel sort of zygotic hybrid, in that "They Took It with Them" is a murky collaboration with Bill Boichel.  It will have to suffice for now to say that the comics herein contained reach far down into the inner organic reaches of human being and bring up some interesting finds the likes of which you won't find elsewhere.  So, if you like adventurous, challenging comics experiences, this might be the book for you.  Also, check in with his Cold Heat mini, The Chunky Gnars, at our SPX 2007 Report.
copacetic price - $5.00

I Wanna Destroy YouI Wanna Destroy You
by Chris Cornwell
Well, not you personally, but the "you" that is at the core of the illusion of a unified, independent self that we all have (had) to deal with in one form or another on the road to forging a workable identity amidst the tumultuous abundance of the post-modern cultural landscape.  The key value to this work is the revelation of the critical role comics can play in coming to grips with the machinery of this omnipresent dilemma.   T his piece, the third by Copacetic customer Cornwell that we've offered for sale, shows the creator exhibiting his ambition as he works to synthesize a wide range of influences into an exploding   montage of styles, narrative tropes and storylines.  The dual 49-panel front and back covers set the stage which stroboscopically shifts through a dry-ice fog of R. Crumb self-consciousness, Charles Burns moodiness, some obvious (but clever!) "quotations" of Marc Bell, and the diegetic use of Fort Thunder tropes, in the process taking the reader on a 28-page journey that evokes a spirit of chaos reminiscent of Paper Rad and which concludes with the multiply referential meta-comics of the inside back cover "pin-up."   I Wanna Destroy You reveals, when the dust settles, the looming question mark of consciousness, and delivers a confirmation of the illusion of self. 
copacetic price - $2.50

We also have a very few copies of a numbered limited edition that sports a silk-screened cover in addition to that pictured above.  copacetic price - $5.00

by Chris Cornwell
Premiering at SPX, this 40-page, horizontally-formatted, black and white piece is the debut full-length work by Pittsburgh-based artist, Chris Cornwell.  Fans of Fort Thunder who are looking for an artist who understands the visual vocabulary of its artists and is capable of intelligently building on their legacy, who has the ability to create a coherent narrative entirely in carefully rendered, visually appealing images, who takes the time to think things through, and whose vision extends far beyond the borders of the comics world need look no further -- this is it!  And, of course, one need not be a fan of the Fort Thunder crowd to appreciate this work, as it is, after all is said and done, quite an original piece.  Questor is a work of pure comics.  What you find here, can't be as fully expressed in any other form.
copacetic price - $2.00

Swell, Part One: Openfaced Sandwich
by Juliacks
Swell #1This 11" x 11", 20-page work is without any doubt the most intense work we came across at this year's (2007) SPX.  It is also, however, one of the more difficult and some readers may find it confusing.  Finally, this is not a work that was produced with entertainment in mind, as it takes us through the tormented psyche of its protagonist, Emmaline, who is haunted by past sufferings which she can't seem to shake.  Juliacks is another new, Pittsburgh-based comics artist.  She has produced several previous works -- which we also have in stock -- but has with Swell produced a clear step forward that stands out from the crowd.  It draws from the same well of savage primitivism as Rory Hayes and Mike Diana, and cross-breeds this quality with the suburban angst of Diane Noomin and Aline Kominsky to successfully communicate the emotional states of rage and pain in which Emmaline is trapped and from which she is desperately trying to escape.  Swell is clearly intended by its creator as a cathartic abreaction of trauma and shines in its artistic risk-taking as many experiments are conducted in characterization, text placement and, most successfully, page layout.  The mark making is heavily labored and obviously invested with strong personal feelings.  All in all this first installment of Swell is a unique piece that is well worth the modest  outlay.  We hope that future installments deliver on the promise of this initial foray. 
copacetic price - $2.00
It is also available in a limited edition with an additional silk-screened cover.

copacetic price - $5.00


Jinxremoving No. Eleven: "The Name Itself Is the Thing Itself."
by Arpad
This is the latest in a series of graphic missives from Chicago by Pittsburgh ex-pat, Arpad (#10 and perhaps even a few earlier issues are also still squirrelled away somewhere in our self-published section).  Jinxremoving, is, as the title suggests, an act of personal-salvation through self-publishing.  Beginning five or so years ago (our memory is a bit foggy on this point) when Arpad yet remained comfortably ensconced within the warm embrace of our fair city -- that's Pittsburgh, to you out-of-towners --  Jinxremoving was, initially, a more typical zine, filled with writings, photos and drawings.  It has, over the past  half-decade, gradually evolved to its present form of pure comics.  And not just any comics.  These are comics that are, at their core, and in a fairly unique way, meta-comics: comics about comics; in this case, about the process of self-discovery and self-invention through comics.  The trick here, is that, for those comics readers who share some of Arpad's interests and characteristics, Jinxremoving can function as a vehicle for self-discovery as well:  the more shared with Arpad, the more powerful the vehicle; the less shared, the less; and, finally, those who share nothing with Arpad will likely, by the same token, have trouble even pulling away from the curb.  Arpad is clearly an omnivorous comics reader who wears his heart on his sleeve; but he has a tendancy to wear his shirt inside out so sometimes it's hard to see.  It may take a few reads to figure out where he's coming from, but if you can recognize his emotional and psychological "home town" and find that it shares something with your own, then, if you work your way backwards, and unroll the riddles, you may find yourself discovering places in your "neighborhood" that you never knew existed.
copacetic price - $2.00

Comicore Jr.
by Paulette Poullet
Taking hand-crafted comics to a new level, this self-published, hand-crafted mini-comic has to be seen to be believed.  Starting with a cover hand cut in the shape of the University of Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning, the comic book that takes craft to a new level continues with a folder containing a hand-numbered, signed mini-portfolio of linoleum block portraits of "The Comedians of the Eighties", a couple cool fold-outs and closes with a a unique, single page collage (a different collage graces single every one of the 350 copies of this limited edition marvel). And sprinkled throughout there's, yes, you guessed it -- comics!  Don't wait too much longer to get your mitts on this one:  there's only a handful left.
copacetic price - $5.00

The Tale of Old Lady Merrell
by Juliacks
Speaking of limited editions, this 64-page squarebound volume -- printed in full color from black & white, duo-tone and full color originals -- was produced by CMU student and performance artist Julia Stien, known in her comics persona as Juliacks in an edition of only thirty copies.  The work is all over the place -- formally a bit like Brian Chippendale, but with contents on an entirely different planet.  Talk about instant collector's item!.
copacetic price - $20.00

RPM #1 & #2

by Rachel Masilamani
These two comic books from a recent Pittsburgh transplant were originally produced in Baltimore, by Xeric grant recipient Masilamani.  Each features amazingly original and completely unique stories carefully rendered in pencil and/or pen & ink according to the needs of the material.  Each is excellent and heartily recommended. 
#1 retail price - $3.00@  copacetic price - $2.50@
#2 retail price - $4.00@  copacetic price - $3.00@

 Deviant Funnies #1 & #2
by Ed Piskor
These two issues are chock-a-block with serious old-school humor comics that have their roots in the glory days of EC and the original Mad.  The level of diligence in the rendering and inking evident in these self-published comics is rarely seen at this end of the comic book spectrum.  The content of the pages in Deviant Funnies run the gamut from birth to death -- filling in the space between with sex, drugs, rock 'n' roll, and a lot of laffs.  Ed is a Pittsburgh local boy who is doing his all to make good.  He recently handed in the longest story in Harvey Pekar's American Splendor: Our Movie Year; and, he did such a good job that Harvey has asked him to be the sole artist on his next project, due out late in 2006.  Don't miss this chance to get your hands on these two mini-masterworks.
retail price - $3.00  copacetic price - sold out

Life's a Cakewalk Comics - A Cartoonist's Sketchbook Diary #1 & #2
by Paulette Poullet
You may or may not ever get the chance to walk a mile in someone else's shoes, but now's your chance to spend a month in someone else's mind  -- the month of February 2005, to be exact.  And you can experience this emotional roller coaster ride in the safety and comfort of your own home, courtesy of the magic that is comics.  You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll notice obvious plugs for The Copacetic Comics Company that render our objectivity in this matter suspect, but you'll be glad you did.
copacetic price - $1.50@ (sorry, #1 is now sold out)

 Ev and Art
by Dorothy Howard
This new work, the first in quite awhile by recent Pittsburgh returnee Howard, features the trials and tribulations of Ev (mostly) and Art, two shy and lonely twenty-something Pittsburghers who are each waiting for the other to make the first move. 
retail price - $3.00  copacetic price - $2.70

Gødland #1 - 24 (so far)
by Tom Scioli and Joe Casey
This hot new FULL COLOR series from Image (of all places) is the co-creation of Pittsburgh's own Tom Scioli, creator of The Myth of 8-Opus (see below).  Scioli's tribute to Jack Kirby's cosmic comics of the 1960s and1970s continues in Gødland, with the added spice of Joe Casey's  snappy dialogue and fueding family drama.  Scioli's art really shines here and takes full advantage of the color processes on offer.  Check this one out now while you can still get the issues at cover price!  Check out the officialGodland Godland website, or read this excellent interview of Tom Scioli by Tom Spurgeon on Comics Reporter to learn more.
 retail price - $2.99@  copacetic price - $2.69@

Gødland TPB, Volume 1: Hello, Cosmic
by Tom Scioli and Joe Casey
This hot new FULL COLOR series from Image has now been collected.  The first six issues are available along with some sketchbook pages in this cosmic package!
retail price - $14.99  copacetic price - $12.75

Gødland TPB, Volume 2: 
by Tom Scioli and Joe Casey
And now there's more!  The next six issues are now available available along with a bonus Christmas short in this hypercosmic package!
retail price - $14.99  copacetic price - $12.75

Gødland TPB, Volume 3: 
by Tom Scioli and Joe Casey
And now there's more!  The next six issues are now available available in yet another hypercosmic package!
retail price - $14.99  copacetic price - $12.75

The Guardians
by Kristoffer Smith
This is an ongoing series by Pittsburgh prodigy Kris Smith, publisher of Vortex Comics (see link below).  We currently have issues #5 - #7 in stock. Worth a look.
copacetic price - $2.00@


The Gypsy Lounge
by Jasen Lex
192 pages! Softcover TPB
half-toned interior pages on heavy glossy stock
with full color cover
retail price - $13.95 copacetic price - $10.00



Science Fair #1, 2, 3 & 4
by Jasen Lex
More cutting edge comics from the creator of Gypsy Lounge (see above). Published by Antarctic Press, Science Fair continue Lex's original hybrid form of computer designed comics that pick up where the techniques he pioneered on Gypsy Lounge left off  -- only this time around, in FULL COLOR!  Learn more at Jasen's Web Page.
retail price - $2.99@  copacetic price - $2.69@

Street Angel TPBThe Street Angel TPB Collection 
by Jim Rugg
OK:  for those of you who have been putting off checking out Street Angel, one of the most original comic book series of the past few years, featuring breathtaking graphics and a trend-setting new character, and that was a surprise hit when it debuted in 2004 -- there's no reason to wait any longer.  And for those of you who are already fans, you'll be happy to learn that when it comes to Street Angel, this new TPB has everything and more: Street Angel issues 1 - 5; all Free Comic Book Day stories; an all-new 12-page Street Angel adventure; pinups from: Jeffrey Brown, Farel Dalrymple, Jesse Farrell, Richard Hahn, Dean Haspiel, Mike Hawthorne, Paul Hornshemeier, Dave Kiersh, Pat Lewis, Jasen Lex, Andy Macdonald, Jim Mahfood, Ted May, Scott Mills, Scott Morse, Bryan Lee O'Malley, Lark Pien, Ed Piskor, Brian Ralph, Zack Soto, Lauren Weinstein, and Dan Zettwoch; a spiffy Sketchbook section; and an introduction by Evan Dorkin.  And remember:  this is a made-in-Pittsburgh production by a Copacetic customer, so don't delay -- get this Street Angel TPB today!  Learn more at the official Street Angel Website.
retail price - $14.95  copacetic price - $13.50

Individual issues are still available:

Street Angel #1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 
by Jim Rugg and Brian Maruca
This is a fun comic!  Jim Rugg's art really shines here.  This is his rookie professional outing, and it looks like he's got a career ahead of him.  Learn more at the official Street Angel Website.
retail price - $2.95  copacetic price - $2.95


The Myth of 8-Opus: The Doomed Battalion
Pittsburgh’s own Thomas Scioli is back with a continuation of his epic saga.  No one works in the tradition of Jack Kirby’s 1970s work better than Scioli.  This one is a B&W,108-page TPB of all new material.
retail price - $16.95 copacetic price - $13.55 

We also stock all the earlier issues of Myth of 8-Opus (#1 - #5).  All still available at 10 off retail ($1.75 - $3.00).  This is an intriguing series that works hard to incorporate classical Greek mythology and philosophy into a cosmic Kirby framework that is guaranteed to be appreciated by all KIrby fans and worth a try by anyone.  Check it out now before these become high-priced collector's items!


Unicorn Mountain 2Unicorn Mountain, Volume 2
edited by Curt Gettman
As the cover states, this is a compendium of comics, writing and music.  This time around Unicorn Mountain is a chunky 206-page squarebound squareformat anthology printed in umber ink on flat white paper of (mostly) Pittsburgh culture that contains an eclectic 21-track CD, all for less than the prie of the average stand-alone CD!  Made possible in part by a grant from the seemingly omnipresent Sprout Fund, this issue is a big step up from the first issue.  Highlights include "Thousands of Mistakes" by Frank Santoro, "Niran and Theola" by Curt Gettman and Owl Kahol Systems (a pseudonym for a local comics artist), "Like Lace" by JULIACKS, "Rock & You" by Paulette Poullet, a two-page untitled piece by Brian Maruca and Jim Rugg of Street Angel fame, and a fistful of untitled illustrations by Paper Rad.  The material on the CD ranges far and wide and includes new tunes by Modey Lemon, Oneida, Ex-Models, Elf Power and Pink Mountaintops.  The Karl Hendricks Rock Band's "The Last Uncompromising Hardcore Band" will have you tapping your toes and singing along before you even realize it. 
retail price - $15.00   copacetic price - $12.00

Unicorn Mountain 1
edited by Curt Gettman
Made in Pittsburgh!  This is the first of a projected series of anthologies featuring local writers, musicians and comics creators.  It comes with a full length CD and a wraparound silk-screened cover by Pittsburgh poster maven, Mike Budai.  Learn more at www.unicornmountain.com.
copacetic price - $12.00

The winter 2004 issue of this 48 page digest-size Pittsburgh periodical is the robot issue.  Fiction and non-fiction -- and one comic -- deal with the place of robots in our imagination as well as as in our reality. 
retail price - $4.00  copacetic price - $3.60

The spring 2004 issue of this 48 page digest-size Pittsburgh periodical is the cowboy issue, and it's their best issue yet.  It looks like the Salt crew has been paying attention and are learning the ropes.  If you haven't tried it yet, this is the issue to add a dash to your literary diet and see if it's to your taste. 
retail price - $4.00  copacetic price - o/s

 SALT #5 
The summer 2005 issue of this ongoing digest-size Pittsburgh periodical is "The Spy Issue."  Weighing in at 52 pages it contains 17 pieces devoted to the theme, comes wrapped in its very own customized manila folder, and includes a set of Spy Trading Cards, that, according to the hand-stamped envelope containing them, "does not exist."  All for one low price!  Learn more at http://www.saltstories.com
retail price - $4.00  copacetic price - $3.60

Young & Reckless: Poison Control Vol. 1
edited by Matthew Newton
We weren't exactly sure how to classify this piece.  It could have just as easily been listed under the book category, but the "vol. 1" in its title led us to list it here.  This is  a limited edition of 250 copies that is a hand made object literally screwed together between pieces of wood.  It's a high quality production that showcases the essays, stories, poems, photos, drawings, and comics of some three dozen contributors from Pittsburgh and around the country.  To learn more visit the publisher.s website at www.poison-control.com.
retail price - $25.00  copacetic price - $22.50