I’m a comic book nerd.
I’ve been one since I first peeled open the cover of an issue of Fantastic Four when I was five years old way back during the Ford administration. And this sadly misunderstood God Bless American art form has imprinted itself on me like a baby chick and has influenced the entirety of my career path (I’m a multi-hyphenate copywriter-graphic designer-broadcast producer-all around creative guy).
And I make no secret of my pushing-40 comic nerditude, a fact which led deadCENTER ladies Kim & Cacky to invite me to help create a comic book page to explain the elements of the film festival to the potentially unaware masses.
A “deadCENTER 101” if you will.
Since I’m the writer and have less of the burden of work to fulfill, I happily agreed, and brought in one of my creative collaborators, OKC artist Robert Wilson IV, to illustrate it.
I belong to what I like to call a “Lazy Book Club.” It started as an actual, legitimate, mostly lady-centric Book Club where they talked about the book they’d read but mostly eat fancy foods and drink fancy wine. So the husbands started crashing the Book Club. Then nobody was actually getting around to reading the books but would show up to eat and drink (now including fancy beers) and talk about things they’d heard on NPR. It was glorious.
Then we dropped the book requirement altogether and started talking about movies instead. Most now call it “Movie Club,” but I like to hold onto the smidgeon of intellectual cachet that comes with being a member of a “Book Club.”
Last fall as I was fulfilling my role as The Most Ironic Adjunct Professor Ever at Oklahoma Christian University,* I gave the students in my Print Media Design class a project to promote awareness of deadCENTER. The first step was to gauge their awareness of the film festival. Maybe two of the students had heard of it.
“Does it show, like, midnight zombie movies and stuff?”
“Maybe, but that’s not the focus of it or anything.”
“It sounds like a zombie movie festival.”
So I used last year’s Best Narrative Feature, Weather Girl, as an example of how “independent film” has a lot more to do with the process than the content.