Rich Koslowski: Writer, Artist, Genius
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I guess it’s finally official…I’m writing for Marvel Comics now!!! As someone fairly well-known over at the “House of Ideas” would say––Excelsior!

I’ve kind of kept hush-hush about all of this because I didn’t want to jinx it, but I now see that it’s been officially released in a Newsarama article ( by MCP (Marvel Comics Presents) editor John Barber. So, I fear the jinx no more (well, maybe a little). Why fear this “jinx” at all you ask? Well, I have shot my mouth off in the past about gigs at big companies only to be burned and end up making half-assed explanations to people as to why things didn’t work out. Trust me…it wasn’t my fault…some day I’m going to write my memoirs on my dealings with certain publishers and editors in this biz. Not yet, though…not yet!

Working for Marvel has always been a dream for me and I'm not shy to admit it. I've been a rabid reader since I was 5 years old! I'm 39 now, BTW. So, is this lifelong fanboy excited? You betcha. Am I worthy to tread where legends like Lee, Kirby, Buscema, Claremont, Byrne and so many more have blazed such memorable paths? Of course, I'm one helluva guy! Talented as hell too! It's true so why feign any false modesty.

Anyways, I will be debuting as an official Marvel writer on their newest incarnation of the MARVEL COMICS PRESENTS Anthology! I will be starting in the debut #1 issue that's currently being solicited in the Diamond Previews catalogue for September shipping! Go order your copies now (multiples of course!)! I'll be one of the featured writers and my run is going to encompass, at least, the first 12 issues, doing 8 page installments. Now, in the Newsarama article John was reluctant to reveal exactly what I’m writing or which character I’ll be writing about. He wasn’t being coy! At the time of his interview we really didn’t have my story nailed down yet. He hinted that there was a reason and said, “I know one thing it’s not about, and in that lies a tale that we’ll all laugh about years from now, after Rich is the wealthiest and most famous comic book writer in the world, but now’s not really the time to go into that story.” That story might also make my memoir! But as John said, we won’t talk about that yet…not yet!

SO! What is the story I’m writing?! Who the hell am I writing about?! I guess I can spill the beans now…at least I hope it’s okay. I am tackling the very enigmatic and undefined new character Michael Pointer a.k.a. The Guardian (formerly and briefly “The Collective”). Some of you may be making that puzzled “WHO?!” face right now and I don’t blame you. Pointer first appeared in the New Avengers in issue # 17 (I think) or #16 or somewhere around there. Brian Bendis created this poor bastard who was involuntarily possessed by the entity(s) known now as “The Collective,” and the very evil bastard known as Xorn! Michael Pointer is––he did not previously know this but––a mutant with the ability to absorb the powers of other mutants. In New Avengers he was used by Xorn to absorb all the powers removed from thousands of former mutants in the now famous “House Of M” storyline. So, Pointer had absorbed the powers of thousands of mutants making him one very, very powerful dude. Possessed by Xorn he obliterated Alpha Flight, killing all but Sasquatch (maybe). Later, the New Avengers managed to purge Xorn (actually Xorn did the purging really) and most of “The Collective” from Pointer’s body leaving him confused and wracked with guilt over learning how he’d been used and what he was made to do…even though it really wasn’t his fault. It also left him with some “residual power” left over from The Collective…apparently enough that he’s still pretty darned powerful.

So––and this is where it gets kind of hinky––Michael Pointer was forced to join the new Alpha Flight, now called Omega Flight to redeem himself. He is now the new “Guardian.” Project Omega has given him this newly modified Guardian suit to better help him adapt to his newfound powers. He didn’t want the gig…didn’t matter, he got it anyways.

This is where I come in. Pointer’s been thrust into the Marvel universe and then thrust into Omega Flight rather abruptly and rather quickly. John and I agreed that this character deserves to be defined a bit more. Give him some room to breathe and let the Marvel readers get a better chance to learn about this character and get to know him. Hell, he has to get to know himself.

He had a very traumatic entrance into Marvel’s universe and my take is that he’s going to have some serious trouble adjusting. In my outlines I’ve been sending to John (and this very article) I keep finding myself referring to Michael Pointer as the “poor bastard.” After reading my story about him I think you might agree. It’s pretty powerful stuff.

Please give it a try and let me know what you think. Let Marvel know what you think and send them your letters! Tell them just how lucky they are to having a phenom like me to rub shoulders with!

As that same aforementioned “Fairly well-known” guy over at Marvel would say…




What the hell!?!!! I go and give my two cents on the Sopranos series finale a few days back and forget to mention, arguably, the show's most popular character, Paulie Walnuts!!! My bad. I think Paulie lives a long and miserable life. Of course all the misery he suffers is due to his own self-imposed anxieties. He's one of those guys who lives forever, bitching the whole time. He'll live to at least 93 years old. And he'll be kicking ass until he's about 86. And, oh yeah, the silver feathers will always be there on the sides of his head...the top will just slowly disappear.

And poor Uncle Junior...a once great character reduced to a sad shell of his former self. I kept hoping the senility was an act. Apparently not. Uncle Junior was always one of my top 2 favorite characters on the show. He brought levity, intensity, old-school values in kiccking ass and what an incredible actor! His fate on the show was, perhaps, the saddest of them all. It was the saddest.

THE LIST is finally here!!!

My newest book, THE LIST, is going to the printer this week and I am finally ready to take advance orders. It's been a 2 year process since I first started putting pen to paper (actually more!) on this newest book and I am so happy that it's finally seeing fruition. I'll be offering THE LIST here on the website for a special discounted price of $14.00 (regular price $15.95) and all books (as always) ordered from the website will come signed and shipping and handling is free! I'm in such a good mood that I think I'll even go ahead and draw a little sketch in all the books ordered from the website!

Gosh I'm cool.

THE LIST was solicited in the MAY PREVIEWS catalogue and will be in stores in the next few weeeks, but if you missed your chance to order there don't sweat it, man, I am here for you. That's why I've got this snazzy site. And if you are a retailer and missed your chance, well, I'm here for you as well. Retailers should contact me through the site and inquire about discounts and specials on back issues.

Well, that's it for today. A short and sweet entry. We're off to a graduation party at Big Tim's house for his daughter, Kayla (Meister). I plan on eating well more than the few bucks she's gonna get from us and bullying all the little kids in the swimming pool.




Yep, unbelievable as this sounds, I was wrong. Second time ever if my addition is right. I picked the Spurs in five games and they won in four. BTW I picked the Spurs when the season began as well. Here's my quick take on the NBA finals this year...Many people described the series as "boring" but I saw excellent defense. Interesting since so many people bitch that NBA players don't play defense. Then, when they do (and both teams did in this series) people say it's "boring." Sheesh!

The Spurs are the best team at adapting to their opponents particular strengths or weaknesses. They can play up tempo, half-court, whatever they need to do. Highly adaptable. They are the best at it. Best team, best coach. Yes, they are a dynasty.

So am I.

The Sopranos series finale also had many people in an uproar. And while I didn't find the last episode to be as gripping as many highlights of the series past I found the ending to be absolutely perfect for the show. Why? Because it was real. If you didn't get that ending you missed what the show was all about. It wasn't about "Who's gonna get whacked this week?!" it was about family. The whacking and gore were just very nice additions to what was basically a family show...a VERY disfunctional family dynamiic, granted, but a family show nonetheless. So showing the Soprano family together at the end like that, uncertain of the future was just fine with me. Life isn't mapped out and tidy and leaving some room for our imaginations is just fine with me.

Perhaps that's the problem, though, Hmm? I've often commented that too many people lack imagination in our society. Maybe this ending was a completely baffling thing for the unimaginative mind to handle?

God I am smart.

So, you want to hear what I think happens?...Well you're going to anyways, dammit. My blog.

Tony does not get whacked in that restaurant. Nope. They have their family dinner and life goes on. Tony gets indicted but he's got boatloads of money and a damn fine lawyer. The charges do not stick. The war with New York is quiet for a long while and everyone makes money. Sylvio eventually comes out of his coma but never the same. Brain damged, physically damaged and basically needs 24 hour care and dies a few years later from complications. A.J. is a spoiled punk who whines his way through the next 5-10 years and mom and pop enable him along the way. Meadow "sells out" and goes the high priced lawyer route further proving what a "flip-flopping" limousine liberal she is.

I think Tony dies of a good old-fashioned heart attack at about 60 years old. I mean, c'mon, look at him! He's a coronary event just begging to happen. Nothing glorious or grandiose...a heart attack whacks Tony.

And Carmella lives to be about 85 in that big old house still having sunday brunches with the remainder of the family.



TOP 10 LIST! 6-8-07

Hello friends! A quick follow up on last week's foreskin column...My friend's Dirk and Melissa had their baby boy last Friday and, apparently, didn't read my blog in time. They butchered the poor kid. He is now one of us...the poor, foreskinless wanderers of this cookie-cutter world we live in.

Sigh...I tried.

Onto other things...

I am always asked "Who's your favorite comic book artist?" or "Who's your favorite comic book artist?" to which I always reply, "Why, ME, of course!" and that's pretty much true. I am the best. And I answer this question so often that it bores me. So, I thought I'd do a "Top 10" list of my 10 favorite comics of all time! But I'm going to go with comics that come to me off the top of my head...the ones that left the most impact on me when I first read them. Some of these were from when I was much younger and the impact they made at the time simply blew my mind! Would they hold up today? Maybe in some cases they would and in others, probably not, but they made a huge impact, nonetheless, and so they're on the list.

So, without further ado...

#10) Giant Size Super Stars #1...This is the first memory I have of buying a comic book. I remember seeing that glorious cover with the Thing and the Hulk inside of a boxing ring slugging it out and it blowing my little mind! This "first comic" story of mine is well-documented as on the very first day I bought this comic I also lost it when, in a gas-hazed state, I left it behind at the dentist's office after having a cavity (or three) filled. It was all-at-once the greatest and most tragic day of my comic book life. Decades later the memory of the whole incident came flooding back when I was paging through an old "Son Of Satan" comic and saw the ad for GSSS #1 in the back. It was surreal. Needless to say I went out and found that comic immediately. The story's okay, but the memory and impact it made on me was indelible.

#9) Watchmen #1...I picked this up months after everyone else did...maybe even a year. I'd heard all the hububb and knew I needed to check it out, but for whatever reason didn't do it right away. Needless to say that when I finally did I was floored! Floored, socked in the guts, completely opened my mind that there could be even MORE in comics! Alan Moore set the bar that day for me. He set the bar for alot of people and comics owe alot to him for setting that bar.

#8) Batman: The Dark Knight Returns...As with The Watchmen, Frank Miller similarly set the bar on this 4 issue mini-series. He made Batman relevant again and did it in such a unique, riveting, mind-blowing way. This was Miller's opus. Seeing Batman take out Superman was one of the best single moments in comic book history!

#7) Avengers # 164-166...This was the 3-issue arc that culminated with Count Nefaria absolutely kicking some serious ass! The start with the Avengers battling The Lethal Legion was completely kick-ass (and would've been cool enough all on its own) and then Count Nefaria pops in and completely blows me away (again! yes)! Not only do we have a nigh-omnipotent super-powered baddie here, but we have an Avengers team in disarray with Wonder Man suffering a heavy dose of self-doubt and The Vision immobilized and in need of repair. The arrival of Thor and temporary turning the tide of the battle was phenomenal! Powerful! It really showed Thor at his greatest...the power that he holds. Thor was handled perfectly here. And the fear that Nefaria felt was palpable! And then!...not only does Nefaria withstand Thor's attack but he gains confidence and turns the tables on him! I was in complete shock. The moment where Cap realizes he's done and gives Wonder Man his shield gave me the chills (still does upon writing this!) and he ending with Hank Pym realizing he was of better use in the lab restoring The Vision was cool and the Vision's saving the day by dropping from outer space onto Nefaria!!!...Awesome! Another spectacular John Byrne moment for me. I was completely "head over heels" for Byrne.

#6) Batman: The Killing Joke...Another Alan Moore moment in comics's history. And the art by Brian Bolland is first-rate. This was one of those one-shot stories that makes such an impression that you read it over and over and over again. I think I read this comic 20 times in 2 years. EASILY! It's the perfect Batman story...Great story, great art, Batman's greatest villain and a few shocking and brutal moments that forever changed the world of Batman and the world of comics. This one still, definitely, holds up when you re-read it.

#5) X-Men #57...This was an early X-Men issue that, when I finally discovered it, opened my mind to the world of the brilliant Neal Adams, and after that I found myself on a mission to find every single issue this man had ever drawn! This happened with me a couple years earlier after discovering John Byrne and now it was happening again! And it was as intense, if not more intense for me. Neal Adams was a revelation for me. I had never seen such sophisticated and dynamic artwork before. I can honestly say I was "addicted" to his artwork. I know, it sounds weird and creepy, but that's the way it was for me. I simply HAD to go out and find every comic this guy ever drew. And I think I pretty much have. And this cat did a LOT of covers...whew!

#4) Fantastic Four #236...This was that double-sized anniversary issue featuring Doctor Doom where Doom had them trapped in a device that made them think they'd been living altogether different lives without their powers. They were trapped in this reality until Reed discovered the truth and set them all free. But Ben was reluctant. This was written & pencilled by John Byrne and the level of intelligence behind the story really impressed me when I read it. I hate to sound redundant but it blew me away!

#3 The X-Men #112-113...The Big Fight With Magneto 2 issue arc! I thought that this was the most perfect X-Men book of the time and, perhaps, the best story ever! Great story, great art, great action, and the best villain! This arc had it all. And the teamwork was poetry in motion when the X-Men--having previously gotten the tar beat out of them by Magneto--fought back from impossible odds and worked together as a team to beat him! It was brilliant. A true "stand up and cheer" moment for me as a young comics reader.

#2) The X-Men #137...The Death of Jean Grey issue. I just couldn't believe it. I actually cried. And I was a pretty tough kid. But also a kid with empathy and emotions and a pure love of my comic books and the characters within. The way that Claremont and Byrne handled this issue was so perfect and moving and I've never experienced the same impact since in comics. And the fight with The Imperial Guard was awesome and heart-breaking seeing them, one-by-one, defeated. This was a perfect comic book.

And, drumroll numero uno "Biggest Impact" comic book ever is!...

#1) The Uncanny X-Men 141 (and 142)..."Days of Future Past" quite simply stunned me into a state of sheer speechlessness and had me frantic for the month between the two issues. I was in the 8th grade and had just subscribed for the first time! This was the first issue I received in the mail and I remember rushing out to the mailbox every day for weeks before that first issue came. Every day running out there until that one fateful day seeing the thin comic wrapped in that plain brown sleeve, ripping it open as I ran up the driveway, seeing that cover with Wolverine in front of the posters claiming the other X-Men all dead! I was freaked. And then I read it...and I read it again! And again!!! I couldn't believe what I was reading! Could it really be? Was this the future in store for my beloved characters? This single issue left a mark on me that I will never forget. The impact was indelible. I've come close to having felt that same impact a few times since...very close...but none have, or ever will, make that impact again. The time was right for me. A great book at a time when comics were "pure magic" for me.

And there it is. I'm sure if you're a comics fan you've noticed a pattern and timeframe for my choices. You can glean from these choices that the biggest impacts for me were when I was a young lad and comics were very magical and somewhat fresh for me. Also that The X-Men were a favorite and John Byrne was my favorite artist of the time. These were the books that changed me. Are they all still books I'd regard as "the best" written or drawn today? Not necessarily (Although they are still all great!.) But they did make the biggest "impact" on me.

Now go ahead...discuss. And make your own lists, it's fun!



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