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Perhaps the greatest success story of the independent comics' scene, Jeff Smith's comedy/fantasy epic Bone, is significant for many reasons. Smith writes, draws & publishes the black & white title through Cartoon Books, his self-owned indy label. He had a short stint with Image, which brought about some good reprints, but quickly opted back to his indy scene. Many independent comic writers/artists look up to him, as he manages to put a really great book out there that many folks read, all by himself.

 

Bone, however, is a seemingly-lightheared tale of a race of odd creatures called the Bones. Taken from the site: "After being run out of Boneville, the three Bone cousins - Fone Bone, Phoney Bone and Smiley Bone, are separated and lost in a vast uncharted desert. One by one, they find their way into a deep forested valley filled with wonderful and terrifying creatures."

 

Characterization is well-done, and very fun too - the protagonist, Fone Bone, is kind-hearted, and grows rather attatched to Thorn, the human girl he discovers early on. Phoney is always after a grand scam, even when the locals only have livestock to offer, and Smiley Bone...is to this series what Brak is to Space Ghost, or Kramer to Seinfeld, and fits like a glove. When it comes together, like "The Great Cow Race", its some of the most memorable stuff in comics, I think.

 

The beauty in the series - only a few issues from ending at # 55, which should occur by the year's end, i believe, then the final trade's released - is its transition. It goes from being a superb black & white comedy/fantasy romp with tons of fun supporting cast to a deep, meaningful epic with history behind it, rather seemlessly, and at moments can still maintain its comedy when it cares to - its a delicate balance, one I feel the current star wars movies are stumbling over, as its difficult. Overall, its an amazing series, and while I'm anxious to see how it pans out, I'll be very sad to see it go.

 

Click here to find samples of the first 5 volumes online

 

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Well, as you might or might not remember me telling you, I was into comics in my middle school years. Mostly Spider-Man (I was into Spidey from a few months after Maximum Carnage ended to after the dreaded Clone Saga). I might still be into comics today if I didn't move to Argentina, where obtaining English comic books is a millionaire's game.

 

While Spidey was my main bag (I even bought all the Scarlet Spider comics, ::shrug::D, I was aware of other comics because...I went to my local comic store to buy back issues of Spidey. I bouhgt about two or three issues of Bone. And yes, it was Bone I read. I am aware of what Pogo is too, as Bill Watterson lists his three biggest influences to be Peanuts, Pogo and Krazy Kat.

 

Anyway, don't remember much about the specific comics I had, but I definely remember Bone. I loved all the funny books (I alos bought tons of Bongo comics at about that time).

Edited by Jack's Meandering Thoughts
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Nah, i hadnt recalled that....Im glad there's someone else out there enjoying the book, though. :D , Mulan & Cap'N P are all big fans but none of em really post over here, so ill :D it myself i guess.

When the final hardcover trade comes out next year, my collection'll be complete, and id be down for sharing, lemme know. Also, there's been some fine side-stories: Big Bone Johnson was a fun prequel comedy, and Rose was also a prequel, but a far more series one, on the falling of the kingdom of Atheia, etc - painted by Charles Vess, of Neil Gaiman's Stardust. It's really cool stuff.

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  • 1 year later...

Ok, so i lost the thread to this one in the crash, but ill talk more about this excellent series later - the entire thing can be found in one massive trade, as i understand it, and its one of the most approachable comics ive read. Shame the animated movie didnt work out, more should read this one.

 

Meantime, in the way of merchandising...Newsarama;

 

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BONE HEADS FOR PC GAME

 

Telltale Games has announced that it will produce a PC-based videogame on Jeff Smith’s Bone, a move which will raise the profile of the property again, following the recent release of Scholastic’s first volume of the collected Bone under it’s Graphix imprint.

 

According to Telltale, the game will start off in the first pages of Smith’s epic. The gaming company’s announcement reads:

 

Lost in the desert and dying of thirst, the Bone cousins are separated by an angry swarm of locusts. Now Fone Bone, armed only with a mysterious map and his well-loved copy of Moby Dick, searches a strange valley to try and find his lost relatives. Along the way he will come face to face with its unusual denizens and begin to be drawn into the greater intrigues that surround the valley.

 

Telltale Games brings you all the humor, charm and mystery of Jeff Smith's acclaimed comic book series Bone. Fans of the comic and adventure gamers alike will find a new home in the valley, as they explore familiar locations and interact with its residents in this character driven adventure.

 

"Detailed rich characters and incredibly immersive story telling are everything to us," said Telltale's CEO Dan Connors in a press release. "We are proud that Jeff Smith and Cartoon Books have decided that we are the best partners to bring Bone to life in a series of PC games. The Bone world has so much texture and depth and combines a unique blend of superb adventure, mystery and humor – it is a great first license for Telltale."

 

"We are very impressed with the work the Telltale team has done in the past. We’re confident they can bring the fun and adventure of the Bone story to life. Bone has been a big hit with comic book lovers everywhere and reaching the PC market will allow even more people to boldly go where no Bone has gone before." commented Cartoon Books' publisher, Vijaya Iyer in the same release.

 

No release date for the game is given.

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Well don't blame ME for not having any photo-shopability. Ya know my country's only had running electricity for 60 years?

 

Nice work tho, Jax.

Edited by Skeeter
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Heh. Phone Ba-one. That's great.

 

But yeah, Jax is right, I love...uh...Bone. Got the huge single-volume edition and I read through it from time to time. Hell, my Livejournal even has a Bone theme. I think a videogame of it is a great idea. There's a bit too much story for a single animated movie (not to mention the fact that nobody's doing 2d animation before, and if a studio made it cg that'd just ruin it) but a videogame will be able to fit everything. I'll be first in line for it.

 

Also can't wait for them to start releasing the colored editions!

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I'm even more hyped about a PC game now that I looked up Telltale Games. They haven't done much yet, but the company is made up of designers who left LucasArts because it turned all-Star Wars. They're the people who designed and produced Grim Fandango, the Sam & Max series, etc! Those guys are perfect for a Bone game.

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I have no clue where I started reading it (I'm sure it wasnt the actual comics, prob a comic strip or mag) but it was absolutely well written and creative. The art was genius in its simplicity (without lack of any detail).

 

But, sigh, because of my ADD (thanks a lot Nintendo! Bastards) Image comics took my attention away.

 

So is the graphic Novel availible? B&N maybe?

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Yeah I got mine at B&N. Borders and Books-A-Million usually have it, too.

 

You might've read it in a magazine somewhere. When I was younger, Disney actually published (in the color!) the first couple stories in the comics section of their Disney Adventures magazine. That's where I first read it.

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  • 2 months later...

I actually saw the "Complete colletion" book at a bookstore recently, looked great, and it was around $30 i wanna say...

 

Anyway, in celebration of SB's bold new theme (shit looks good man), here's this from newsarama.

 

BONE GAME WEBSITE LAUNCHES

Telltale Games today officially launched its website for the upcoming Bone videogame, based on Jeff Smith’s creation, characters and world.

 

Along with previewing game screens and character designs, the site also includes information about the game, gameplay, locations, and characters.

 

The website is located at www.telltalegames.com/bone_the_game

 

Click here for Newsarama’s interview with Telltale about the game.

 

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That is so cool I think I'm gonna cry! :D

 

I just found the first re-release of Out From Boneville in the new color edition. My new theme is scanned from that (swear to god, the lens flare is actually in the book). Steve Hamaker's colors are so fantastic it's going to be enough to make me buy all the books all over again. Seriously, flip through it if you see it.

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Oh man, after reading the interview I'm even more hyped. A modern point-and-click adventure game? The guys who worked on Grim Fandango, Sam & Max, and Full Throttle? And they're planning on releasing a game for each book? I can't wait! :D

Edited by Silent Bob
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  • 4 months later...

Newsarama: Bone demo's up for downloading!

 

BONE PC GAME AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD NOW

 

Press Release

 

    Telltale, Inc. is pleased to announce the immediate availability of its first interactive tale based on “Out from Boneville,” from Jeff Smith’s acclaimed Bone series. Visitors to the Telltale website can also download a free demo version of the game.

 

    http://bone.telltalegames.com

 

    Telltale, an emerging pioneer in interactive adventures and entertainment, is making this title available through its direct-to-consumer Telltale Now™ channel, for downloading titles over the Internet. This can be accessed at the bone.telltalegames.com URL.

 

    The Bone adventures begin with three cousins – Fone Bone, Phoney Bone and Smiley Bone – who become separated in a vast, uncharted desert. One by one, they find their way into a deep, forested valley filled with wonderful and terrifying creatures and new mysteries that await them.

 

    Hailed by reviewers and educators alike as engaging for all ages, the Bone books have become the anchor for a series of graphic novels from Scholastic’s new Graphix imprint.

 

    “I’ve worked very closely with Telltale as they’ve been developing this title and have been very impressed,” says Jeff Smith, creator of Bone.

 

    “They’ve done an amazing job capturing the essence of my story and adapting it for a new medium – with great animation, voices, and fun puzzles and games worked into the story in a very natural way.”

 

    “We’re finding that Bone plays really well as an interactive tale,” says Dan Connors, CEO of Telltale. “It has terrific characters, an interesting setting and a story that hits on many different levels. It has something for everyone, with an approachable narrative for kids; fun mini-games and puzzles; and deeper elements for fans of classic adventures and epic sagas.”

 

    Telltale has created innovative tools, designed specifically for rapid development of high quality, space-efficient titles for digital distribution. With this approach, Telltale has the ability to publish new Bone episodes regularly, with the next one scheduled for early 2006.

 

    Those interested in Telltale’s “Out from Boneville” can download a free demo from bone.telltalegames.com and other popular download sites. They can un-lock the full story for $19.99 without any additional downloads.

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