• Interviews 

    Multiversity Comics Presents: David Gallaher

    By | November 30th, 2009
    Posted in Interviews | % Comments

    This weeks Multiversity Comics Presents features David Gallaher. He is best known for his work on the Harvey Award winning digital comic series High Moon. He is a digital comics pioneer and rising star of the comic industry in general. Mr. Gallaher agreed to stop on by and answer some questions about his past, present and future. So if you aren’t familiar with Gallaher you will be and if you are familiar than you’ll love this! Questions range from High Moon action figures to possible future franchise work with the big two. So without further ado let’s get it going.

    Box 13 is a comic that you’re currently writing that is being released through ComiXology’s comic reader. It says in the description that it’s based on an old radio show. A quick search of Wikipedia tells me that the radio show ran from August 1948 to August 1949. So I have to ask, where did you come up with the idea to create a comic based on it? Was it an idea you had or someone brought to you?
    The idea to develop BOX 13 was a confluence of things, really. But, essentially, the story was inspired by real life events that were begging to be let out. The ideas and central concept got batted around in my head for some time. After a while, I brought the ideas up to Steve Ellis — where we developed the characters and the ideas even further. ComiXology provided us the opportunity, resources and tools to tell the kind of story we wanted to tell on a mobile device – and that’s where we are now.

    Much like High Moon, Box 13 is a free comic released through a digital comics source. Why do you seem to gravitate to this format? Do you see it as a way to reach a wider audience?

    I think price point and availability are the two biggest obstacles that prevent people from trying new things. So why not eliminate those barriers? If as a creator you are delivering quality content — the readership will follow. I think a prime example of that model working is Dr. HORRIBLE’S SING-ALONG-BLOG. 

    Box 13 is the first original content to come out of ComiXology. Who approached whom to make that happen? Did they reach out to you knowing your success in the digital medium of comics?

    ComiXology had been supporters of HIGH MOON since Day One. Towards the end of our third season of HIGH MOON, they approached us and we talked about their Comics app — and how best to develop content for it. 

    I also have to ask you about another thing on your Wikipedia page. Who is Ken Wolak and why were you confused with him? Would you like to take this as an opportunity to clear the air?

    This is a super simple mistake. There was an error in the production of one of my books – Moonstone Monsters: Ghosts – where the printer, not the publisher, went in to adjust the proofs on a file. Ken Wolak, who was the production artist on the series, got credited instead. Simple mistake. The story itself, “Suicidal Tendencies”, can be read right here.

    Now that you’re stepping into Marvel’s Universe to do Hulk: The Winter Guard will you be doing more with their characters, DC’s, or any other company’s established creations? If so can you talk about it?

    I’d love to do more WINTER GUARD. I loved working on that book. But, until the end of the year, HIGH MOON and BOX 13 have our full attention. Ask me again in January.

    Any characters or properties that you’d like to take a crack at?

    I’m really rather partial to NOVA and the original NEW WARRIORS series. Oh, and Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends.
    Continued below

    Once you’ve finished with Box 13 and Winter Guard what is next for you? More digital media, print work, or some of both?

    Well, don’t forget that there’s a LOT more HIGH MOON to finish — almost 600 more pages. And, as of this writing, there are 8 more chapters of BOX 13. But, I think you’ll certainly see our digital presence grow over the next year. 

    Being a major face of the digital side of the comic book community what, in your opinion, do you think it will take for the medium to move more so into the digital format? Do you think it will ever move to the digital format entirely?

    I’m not sure the medium will ever entirely move into the digital format. And, I say this as a huge supporter of the digital comics movement. I think there will always be people who will cherish the ‘artifact’ of print. The expression I used to hear was that ‘books don’t require batteries’ — and just as you have people who collect action figures, vinyl records, model trains, old first edition books, and beanie babies, you will always have people who will cherish the artifact of the comic book.

    I do think the economy of creating digital comics will increase its viability for creators and consumers. At this point, web and digital comics already vastly outnumber the amount of print comics — and as retailer, distributor, and publishing models continue to change and evolve — you’ll start to see an even greater number of comics offered on a wide variety of digital platforms.

    Do you think things like collectability will hinder the move to digital and if so do you think this will be a minor problem as newer readers come in and maybe aren’t as into the collectability of comics?

    Not really.

    In the last year, I’ve watched many of my friends unload tons and tons and tons of DVDs, CDs, and video games in an effort to de-clutter their lives. I like to think that we’re moving into an age where people only collect what is most important to them.

    In terms of new readers, I think of it sort of like this … how many TV shows or musical bands have you caught at the ground floor? Now, how many comics have you caught at the ground floor? If the stories you are telling are engaging and entertaining, people will seek it out — no matter where it is, whether it’s a back issue at your local comic shop, as an Essential trade paperback, or as a digital back issue. Is it more important that they own a physical copy … or is it more important that the experience the story? I like to think it’s the former.

    You’ve shown your collection of action figures over Twitter a few times. How many figures do you have? Which is your favorite?<

    I collect Marvel Legends figures almost exclusively. I have a few hold-outs from my days of collecting DC Total Justice figures — and I have Tick action figures — and I’ve honestly lost track at this point of how many figures I have. It’s certainly well over 200, which includes a couple of self-made-customs, like Black Queen, Red Skull, Crimson Commando, Banshee, Morph, and Mutant Zero. In terms of which figure is my favorite … that’s tough. I’m really partial to my custom Banshee figure. I also just got this Goliath figure that I’m just in awe of … but, I guess my actual favorite is my Captain Marvel figure, who I think just looks stellar. 
(David was gracious enough to take a shot of said figure.)

    Any chance of seeing some High Moon action figures? DC and Zuda are connected so the idea of seeing some High Moon figures through DC Direct doesn’t seem like that crazy an idea.

    There’s always a chance. HIGH MOON action figures are certainly on my wish list, but I’d almost rather see the scene from Page 5 of HIGH MOON rendered as a giant statue. I mean … THAT would be incredible! 
(Page 5 of High Moon can be found to the left)

    Continued below

    Lastly, I want to congratulate you on your Harvey Award for High Moon. It was well deserved. How does it feel to have your hard work appreciated in such a way that others feel the need to give you awards? It has to be nice.

    Thank you very much. During my acceptance speech, the first thing I said was “This is awesome!” It was awesome. It’s absolutely fantastic to get up on stage and get an award … but what’s even cooler is celebrating that event with my co-collaborators and my colleges who have supported me every step of the way.

    We at Multiversity Comics want to thank David Gallaher again for taking time out of his schedule to do this interview. Also, if you enjoyed this interview be sure sure to check out future installments of Multiversity Presents. Also, check out David Gallaher’s work and help support a nice guy. High Moon can be found on Zudacomics.com and Box 13 can be found on Comixology’s comic app for the iPhone. Plus, don’t forget his Winter Guard comic through Marvel. See everyone next time.

    Brandon Burpee

    Burpee loves Superheroes, Alaskan IPA, 90's X-Men and is often one more beer away from a quotable.