It’s time we put up a story that took us in a different direction for a while. The Seeker started as a character drawing for a short comic that we were going to do for a friend’s zine, but it never ended up happening. We sat on it for a long time, and after wrapping up ED #2, we wanted to branch out a little and publish a book that wasn’t an Esoteric Dialogue title. We used it as an opportunity to experiment with a different approach. Things really started to take shape when we decided to not use panels, and take more of an illustrated poem approach with the stanzas of the poem being complemented by a single illustration.
The story follows a lone traveler who is followed by Fear and Solitude, his companions that he travels with. On his quest for Love, the Seeker wanders the earth with his companions and confronts the loneliness and anxiety that comes with the choices he makes.
We also wanted to do something different with the overall aesthetic of the book itself so we added paper textures to the covers and inside pages to replicate the look of an old tome.
The Seeker isn’t a happy story, but it’s an honest one. It’s a reflection on avoidance and the fears and comforts of solitude. It’s a story of doubt, and eventually, regret. It’s a story about self and making choices.
We’re releasing the story into the wild for all to read. You can purchase a print copy in the sidebar and read it for free on the website. Enjoy! -SB
We’re very honored that one of our all-time favorite comics podcasts, The Comics Alternative, featured a discussion of Esoteric Dialogue #1 & #2 on their show! Known as “two guys with PhDs talking about comics,” the show focuses on insightful conversations and interviews about comics and creators outside of the superhero genre.
They said ED #1 made them feel “insane.” I take that as a compliment.
These days we’re trying to make some smaller stuff and post more frequently. Making books is our main focus, and we’re putting the final touches on our next one, The Seeker, but we’ve been experimenting on the side. Here’s the latest.
This is the first in a little series that we’re doing called Faces.
Color is fun and so are computers with editing software.
A lot of boiling-over occurred in 2015 when it came to protests against police violence in the black community and the anger of an exploited middle class. Chicago saw the clashes up close. Lumpen Magazine # 127 is an edition that applauds the efforts of community activists and those willing to stand up to the injustices of a corrupt political system.
‘Action and Apathy Blues’ is our addition to the issue and touches on the malaise of believing something needs to change and what we can do about it.
The story, characters, visual style and… well just about everything in ED#1 was the result of an evolution process. We had a lot of ideas, scratched most of them, and crafted the best ones draft after draft. Below are some of those ideas and Matt’s sketches that didn’t make it into the final book.
An early drawing of the Illuminati performing a dark ritual in the form of a board game.
Drawings from an idea for a fake gimmick ad page.
Page from a “history” segment.
An unfinished promo page featuring Bigfoot, the Mothman, a Grey alien, and a UFO. Oh yeah, and two teens slurping on each other.
An unfinished comic Matt was working on that showed a media-brainwashed dude that ends up blowing up the planet.
A page from an old ED story idea about Shelly Shivers, an all-American girl who becomes a witch through playing D&D, which was inspired by the old Chick comic written by the infamous John Todd.
Another page from the “history” segment.
A promo page featuring poster-like panels of various conspiracy theories.
A page from the very first ED story idea inspired by an interview I heard on Coast to Coast with George Noory about a child sacrifice that took place in the catacombs of the Vatican.