When I was reviewing small press and mini-comics in the late ’80s, I was excited by what I saw as the closest thing (pre-Internet) to absolute freedom in comics.
By going completely outside any traditional markets, and often sold only through the mail and at local cons, these photocopied comics could go in any direction their artists wanted them to, not just what the market would allow.
None of the artists expected to get rich, but we readers knew that whatever showed up in our mailbox was going to be exactly what the artist really wanted to it to be.
Some artists stuck with light gag comics. Some produced one or two minis and vanished. Some went on to mainstream(?) success like Chester Brown. Some like Matt Feazell, John Porcellino, and Steve Willis became mini-comics legends and inspired others to make their own homemade comics.
And then there was Armageddonquest by Ronald Russell Roach.
Warren Ellis said it best:
ARMAGEDDONQUEST squirms and thrashes in a crawlspace it dug out with its bare talons, partway between the early graphic novel and classic “outsider” art. It’s the comics version of the demon-haunted work of the young Daniel Johnston, raw, passionate, demented, electric.
I really enjoyed Ron Roach’s crazy, wonderful comic when it came out, but I never expected to see it again. 900 pages is a massive hurdle for something as idiosyncratic as this. But then along came Kickstarter.
I was delighted to be the first donor. This is a worthwhile project. Please consider joining in the effort.