Insight Studios announces Marc Hempel's 'Naked Brain'

Thu, April 18th, 2002 at 12:00am PDT

Comic Books
Jonah Weiland, Executive Producer/Publisher

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Official Press Release

Baltimore - At a meeting held today at Insight Studios headquarters,

publisher Mark Wheatley announced the launch of a new comic book

mini-series by his long-time partner, Marc Hempel. The new series will

begin in July and run three issues going by the title MARC HEMPEL'S

NAKED BRAIN.

MARC HEMPEL'S NAKED BRAIN is a many-faceted collection of comic strips.

Wheatley was enthusiastic in his description: "I believe that comics is

a language as distinct as English, French, Chinese or ancient

Babylonian. And I also believe that there have been only a select

handful of creative individuals who have used the language of comics as

a native tongue. Just a few from that group are Will Eisner, Harvey

Kurtzman, Bernard Krigstein, George Herriman, Alex Toth and Marc

Hempel." Including Hempel in that group is high acclaim indeed, but

Wheatley asserts that MARC HEMPEL'S NAKED BRAIN will offer the proof of

his statement. "Marc is a master of the concise comic strip. Each issue of

NAKED BRAIN is full of one page strips and gag cartoons - many that will

make you laugh until you hurt. And if you know the language of comics

you'll also be amazed at just how much this language is capable of

communicating. Marc understands comics better than anyone I know - and

here he pushes it way beyond any notion of 'limits'."

Hempel's own thoughts were less bombastic. "Everything I create is an

honest expression of who I am - hence the title of this series!

Fortunately, my own personal take on popular culture, eccentric

personalities and other quirky aspects of modern life seems to resonate

with my readers," he stated. Evidently, this statement has substance,

since an Internet comic strip version of NAKED BRAIN has been appearing

on the www.SunnyFundays.com web page for about a year, attracting well

over a million hits a month. But Hempel is quick to point out that,

"Even though the comic book series has the same title as the on-line

strip, there is much more to the comic book." The comic book will also

present a series of gag cartoons by Hempel. "I've been developing these

cartoons for several years with the plan that I'll start submitting them

to mass market magazines. I've been showing them to the guys around the

studios, and Mark Wheatley insisted on including them." Wheatley

confirmed this and added, "Marc's gag cartoons are as funny and

sophisticated as anything you'll ever see in The New Yorker. They offer

instant access to anyone flipping through MARC HEMPEL'S NAKED BRAIN, and

make it one of those rare comic books that can be sold to the general

public with no explanation." MARC HEMPEL'S NAKED BRAIN will also

include the much anticipated return of one of Hempel's most popular

creations, TUG & BUSTER. Each issue of MARC HEMPEL'S NAKED BRAIN will

include a short story or two about these endearingly maladjusted

misfits. TUG & BUSTER originally appeared in a series of seven comic

books self-published by Hempel in the late 1990's. One issue and a

collected edition of the early TUG & BUSTER material eventually appeared

through Image Comics. Currently the series is being translated for

publication overseas.

In addition to TUG & BUSTER, Hempel's credits in the comic book industry

include work for Heavy Metal, Clive Barker's Hellraiser, Gregory, Mars,

Jonny Quest, Breathtaker, Blood of the Innocent, Swamp Thing, The

Dreaming and The Sandman: The Kindly Ones. Marc Hempel's Naked Brain

will serve as a welcome addition to this highly regarded list.

Another book, IS ART: the Art of Insight Studios collects Hempel's far

ranging illustration work. It is also available from Insight Studios

Group.

 
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