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View Full Version : Criminal Macabre - The Cal McDonald Mysteries



jboncha
09-05-2008, 03:39 PM
Its a new twist on the classic PI theme.
Cal McDonald is a guy who was a cop but because he sees supernatural things that most people ignore he failed the drug test with flying colors.
He now deals with all the supernatural crime that the cops wont come near.
The stories (both prose & comics) are written by Steve Niles of 30 Days Of Night fame and have been illustrated by a bunch of different artists.
The most recent collection which should be released soon is My Demon Baby.
The most recent mini series, Cell Block 666, should start next week.
Both of those have been illustrated by Nick Stakal.
There have been talks about turning the series into a movie with Thomas Jane of The Punisher starring.
This prompted Tim Bradtsreet to be recruited for cover art which he bases on Jane's likeness.
There was also a recently released collection of all the prose stories.
I have it on hold at my local library but I might buy it just because its taking so long to come in.

I was wondering if anyone else is reading the stories and if so what do you guys think of them.
I really like crime stories and these are also monsters stories as well so it makes the that much more interesting.

Here's a piece of art off of Nick Stakal's MySpace page:

http://img378.imageshack.us/img378/6621/calmcdonaldmysterytheatep2.jpg

Funny Stuff ...:evilsmile:

Vintage Crime
09-05-2008, 08:13 PM
Its nice to see a thread about this series. There are several indy books that I read that don't seem to have threads in this section. Criminal Macabre is on my pull list. So far I think that My Demon Baby is my favorite arc. Two Red Eyes comes in at a close second. The satanic baby shower was hilarious. Nosferatu crashing his ancient ship and rats running out was awesome also. Good times.

I'm glad they talked Bradstreet into doing covers. Tim Bradstreet created some of my favorite Hellblazer covers so his style seemed to give the book more prestige in my eyes. I like the new artist too.

Pip
09-06-2008, 01:38 AM
Thomas Jane is pushing himself to be in every comic book film so it seems, did you see him in Jonah Hex make-up? i liked Criminal Macabre but kinda lost interest when Kelly Jones took over art duties as i don't think it fits the series, so i will be glad to see a new artist on it

jboncha
09-06-2008, 04:50 PM
I didnt like Kelley Jones work much either.
Where's his Supernatural Freak Machine BTW ... :confused:
I definitely like the new artist.
Nick Stakal may be the best artist on this book yet.
I mean I do like Ben Templesmith's work on the first mini but as Ben said himself his art has matured a lot since then.
If you compare his Criminal Macabre work to his Fell/Wormwood work its a huge difference.

Here's a piece of Nick Stakal's work from My Demon Baby #3:

http://img364.imageshack.us/img364/2883/criminalmacabrenickstakkd8.jpg

Pip
09-07-2008, 02:01 AM
his art does look pretty cool, as for supernatural freak machine, i'm waiting for number 3 of the trades as i have 1, 2 and 4 is 3 SFM? if so why has 4 been released before 3?

Libaax
09-07-2008, 04:39 PM
I recently discovered the first CM mini with Templesmith art.

This new artist looks very good.

At darkhorse site i get confused, which other minies are there ? Are they all collected ?

jboncha
09-07-2008, 04:52 PM
I recently discovered the first CM mini with Templesmith art.

This new artist looks very good.

At darkhorse site i get confused, which other minies are there ? Are they all collected ?

This will help: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criminal_Macabre:_A_Cal_McDonald_Mystery

jboncha
09-07-2008, 05:16 PM
his art does look pretty cool, as for supernatural freak machine, i'm waiting for number 3 of the trades as i have 1, 2 and 4 is 3 SFM? if so why has 4 been released before 3?

SFM is volume 3 "technically" because the story takes place in between 2 & 4 but it got held up (and is still delayed) between the transition from IDW to DH.
The first 3 issues were put out on IDW and something happened which caused issues 4 & 5 were delayed for a while.
Some time after that DH picked up CM as an ongoing series of minis.
They decided to publish a TPB of SFM but it hasnt materialized yet ... :frown:

Vintage Crime
09-07-2008, 06:16 PM
SFM is volume 3 "technically" because the story takes place in between 2 & 4 but it got held up (and is still delayed) between the transition from IDW to DH.
The first 3 issues were put out on IDW and something happened which caused issues 4 & 5 were delayed for a while.
Some time after that DH picked up CM as an ongoing series of minis.
They decided to publish a TPB of SFM but it hasnt materialized yet ... :frown:
Jones had too much work and put CM on the back burner. I think Mr. Jones was working on Conan. I'm not a huge fan of KJ either, but stories are more important to me. Great art can't save a crap story. I can't think of an artist that would make me interested in a Chuck Austen story. Anyway, the current artist is a lot better than most of the previous artists.

I'm looking forward to seeing how Cal reacts to jail. I wonder if the human inmates will recognize him? Will there be supernatural inmates ready to attack Cal?

jboncha
09-07-2008, 06:21 PM
Jones had too much work and put CM on the back burner. I think Mr. Jones was working on Conan. I'm not a huge fan of KJ either, but stories are more important to me. Great art can't save a crap story. I can't think of an artist that would make me interested in a Chuck Austen story. Anyway, the current artist is a lot better than most of the previous artists.

I'm looking forward to seeing how Cal reacts to jail. I wonder if the human inmates will recognize him? Will there be supernatural inmates ready to attack Cal?

I remember hearing something like that.
I definitely think Stakal is much better than Jones.
Jones art is cartoonish at times and not grim enough in my mind.
The artists in my sig I'll usually buy just about anything they do but I also enjoy a good story too.
Anything by Steve Niles is usually a no brainer for me but having a good artist along with that is a great bonus ... :evilsmile:

jboncha
09-09-2008, 04:39 PM
Let me speak some more about Kelley Jones.
As far as I'm concerned he is the least of all the artists to work on this series so far but he might still be a good horror style artist.
I havent read anything else he has drawn.
I'm gonna read his Batman: Vampire trilogy soon and I have his 13th Son series he did for Dark Horse on hold at my library.

jboncha
09-10-2008, 06:36 PM
It looks like Kelley Jone is working on a Batman series called Gotham After Midnight with Steve Niles which I think I'm gonna check out.
http://img134.imageshack.us/img134/3627/batmangot01001xl8.jpg

Pip
09-11-2008, 10:59 AM
Jones work on Deadman was very good, i think his art fitted very well

Herr Mike
09-11-2008, 01:43 PM
I read the original, which I liked, and "Supernatural Freak Machine" and "Two Red Eyes" but I didn't care much for either of those two, primarily because of the artwork. Jones and Hotz are not good for horror stories.

I recommend "Batman After Midnight" by Niles, I thought it was a very spooky series.

Vintage Crime
09-12-2008, 06:31 PM
I've been reading Gotham after Midnight, but I haven't enjoyed it that much, its okay. I'm going to keep it on the pull list. Hopefully it will get better. I like the art, but the story hasn't caught fire in my opinion.

Vintage Crime
09-12-2008, 06:33 PM
As for Criminal Macabre's artwork I really like Nick Stakal's art. However, I would like to see Steve talk his buddy Bernie Wrightson into drawing an arc of Criminal Macabre. They worked together on City of Others and Dead She Said, maybe they'll work on Criminal Macabre in the future.

Vintage Crime
09-12-2008, 06:47 PM
Cellblock 666 issue 1 came out last Wednesday (I think, don't quote me on that thought because it had been two weeks since I had picked up my comics at the shop).

Not a bad start to the current arc. Cal and some ghouls busted into a house and killed some vampires. In regard to the vamps, Cal mused, "Word had come to me about a club in Noho that had been getting hit by bloodsuckers who liked to drag off little poser goth girls and drain them of blood." I always like the sarcastic quips Cal has against goths.

Back to the story, Cal went to the bar, but had to leave to try to escape from the cops. A ghoul tricked Cal into running the wrong way and getting caught. I'm not sure why the ghoul turned on Cal, but its nice to see some mystery added to the arc.

Pip
09-13-2008, 04:39 AM
sounds good, but i will have to wait a while for the trade

jboncha
09-15-2008, 08:24 PM
I got the Two Red Eyes TPB from my library recently and its a pretty good story.
I especially like how Cal destroys the vampire.
I think I'm gonna buy it soon

jboncha
10-05-2008, 11:16 PM
I keep checking TFAW to see when Cell Block 666 #2 is gonna be releasd and it keeps getting pushed back.
It was October 29 now its November 19.