The Gods Among Men team

Main Guest

Ben Sullivan, Aaron Mak & Josh Mak

Leigh chinwags with some of the lads behind the awesomeness that is Gods Among Men. Aaron Mak and Josh Mak are The Mak Bros and Ben Sullivan is The Ben Sullivan 😉 Come join the fun.

Click Here to find out more about Ben Sullivan Click Here to find out more about Aaron Mak Click Here to find out more about Josh Mak

Transcription Below

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Voice Over (00:02):
This show is sponsored by the Comics Shop. We hope you enjoy the show.

Leigh Chalker (00:25):
Righto. Good evening. Welcome to another issue of Tuesday Chin Wag. My name is Lee Chalker, the creator of the Australian Independent Comic book, the Battle for Bustle, published through Comic X Studio. Now, let’s talk about a couple of things because across the bottom of your screen on that little yellow ticker box are two addresses. And those two addresses are where this show is streamed live. So in the first address we have Comex. Now Comex is made up of three little particular areas. The show is sponsored by Comic Studio. The comic studio is the publishing side of comics and it produces Australian independent comic books. It is also a shop. Now the shop has a $9 flat rate. Now that’s not just for one comic book, that’s for as many comic books as you want to buy. So you don’t have to buy my comic book.

You can buy anyone’s comic book, anyone that tickles you Fancy. There is also the community side of comics and that’s bringing together like-minded people that just have a love for comics, want to talk some art, want to just shoot the breeze, learn a few things, and just meet some people that they’ve never met before and just genuinely feel good and just spread the love of all things comic books. And there is also the Comics Network, which is the live streaming side of things. And that is what Chinwag is on. We have Friday night drink and draws the others Comex show. And there is also how to make a comic book. So that’s that. Now, the other channel there is Aussie verse. Now Aussie verse is an Australian, how shall I say, pop and comic book and cultural site, which does interviews, comic halls, custom makes, talks about comic reviews, does as so many, many things.

It’s also a wonderful community, a brother and a sister community combined together with like-minded interests obviously. And it’s always great to be on both of those channels and to bring this show to you. Now, the best thing you can do to support Comex and Aussie verse is like, and subscribe ’em anywhere. You can find them and they’re on YouTube, they’re on Instagram, they’re on TikTok, they’re on whatever place you can get there. If you find it, just press that little like button, press the bell. Because when you do that, it supports all the algorithms and things and it’s like a tree. So essentially you are the water to the tree because if you water the tree with your likes and subscribes, the tree gets bigger, then the branches reach out to more people and that brings more people to the knowledge of Australian comic books.

And that is what we want. Now the show is based for anyone that hasn’t seen it on who, what, where, when, why, and how. Sometimes we get through these things, sometimes we do not. I personally like to keep it as fluid as we can. I think fluidity is the best way to do things. And we go with the flow of where the conversation takes us. It could be high, it could be low, there could be tears, it could be laughter. Who knows? We’ve got a couple hours in front of us and it’s always good fun. Comments are always welcome. So if you do have any comments for myself, the guests that are on tonight, then feel free to fire away. Thank you everyone. Woohoo to Kerry Harris. Thank you Nick May for saying good day and everyone watching at home Sped g day, mate, how are you?

And thank you for your continued support. So tonight, I’m pretty excited tonight because got a couple, there’s three gentlemen here that’s, they’ve been doing the rounds with their comic book, they’re about to, well, let me introduce ’em to you first and I’ll let them do the talking about where they are in the Australian comic book scene. That would be the best thing. Let them do the talking and I’ll do some listening. Alright, so we’ve got the Mac Brothers, now we have Josh down there, and Aaron, how are you gentlemen? Very good, very good. Thanks Lee. Good to be here. No, it’s excellent to have you. Very good man. I’m very excited and have a great mate of mine and absent mind, gday buddy. And we have a great mind. Great mind. We have a great mate of mine, Mr. Ben Sullivan up the top and you will find out the Rio behind the comic book, God’s Among Men.

Now that is a comic studio book and the Kickstarter is going to be launching pretty soon, I think early next week if I’m not mistaken. And that address will pop up sooner rather than later whenever we’re talking about it. If you have not jumped on there, press notify immediately. Get an email for when it launches next week, jump on the back of these boys because this comic book is pretty bought to the wall. I’ve enjoyed what I’ve seen about it. I’m looking forward to having a chat. Someone needs to shut me up, so I’m going to go straight to the Mac Brothers. Alright, so gentlemen, hello to everyone. Alright boys. Now we haven’t had you on the show before. I’ve had Aaron. So what I’m going to do is I don’t want to exclude anyone, but Josh, I am going to fire off at you first buddy. So we’re going to give you a quick fire, who, what, where, when, why, and how and move around the room and then we’ll come into some conversations. So Josh, who man,

Josh Mak (06:09):
I’m Josh Mack and together with Aaron and Ben we’re part of our production company, Ian Comics and where to create us behind God’s among Men.

Leigh Chalker (06:18):
Very good. Alright, so what is God’s among Men?

Josh Mak (06:27):
It’s your turn now. I’ve done enough talking God’s among men. It’s a new comic that we’re putting out and what makes it unique is that it’s a true crime story.

Leigh Chalker (06:38):
Very good. I like that. I like that man. It’s all good. It’s interesting. What caught me was that I’ve, a while back I managed to catch the first eight pages of it and it caught me and I’ve spoken to Aaron about this. Just was very different. Also caught me off guard because I won’t go on about it too much. But due to some of my history, which hasn’t always been the most straight and narrow, there was a few things that I could, situations and particular characters that I could identify with from my period of that sort of a lifestyle. And I think it’s always a breath of fresh air to have a little bit of truth pumped into not just comic books, but literature in general. So when I say balls to the wall, I commend you on that man, because some people don’t like to see what’s out there in the real world. Do you know what I mean? And I applaud you, man, for getting behind that and showing just what some of life is about, man, because I was part of that life and it’s managed to get myself out of it. But I’m glad someone’s showing those sorts of things if only it opens people’s minds to what other people go through and things. But where are you both from?

Josh Mak (08:22):
We’re from Melbourne, Australia. Both of us.

Leigh Chalker (08:25):
Yeah, born and bred there. Local boys?

Josh Mak (08:28):
No, we were born in Singapore and Aaron was younger. I moved here when I was about 19, I think. 1920, something like that. Yeah,

Leigh Chalker (08:41):
Yeah, yeah. No, beautiful man. That’s cool. We’ll get onto that a little bit later. Now. One thing I’ll just come straight into with you is I usually ask this sort of question at the end, man, but I’m just trying to, we’ve got a little, it’s a lot of guests on here tonight and I’m used to one. So as I said, a little bit of fluidity here tonight, so people at home listening to you guys just going to have to roll with me here. I’m feeling pretty high energy. You can probably see my head going red like a light bulb, but that’s okay. It’s good energy, it’s love. So that’s what we want. That’s all I’m powered by brother. So we’ll just keep rolling with it. Why did you, we’ll come back to omni bow’s thing in a tick and why the comic books?

Josh Mak (09:28):
Well, comic books were not our first choice. Aaron often says, I think comics chose us rather than the other way around for a long time. I’m a musician, firstly before I got involved with comic books and I always told these stories through songs, but there’s only so much you can tell through a song. And even with a music video, it’s not enough time. So originally this was intended to be a film and from a film we realized, well a film’s too short unless you’re going to make it 10 hours, so maybe we’re going to tell it through a TV series. So we began working on a script to shoot like a pilot, and we immediately ran into problems with how much that would cost and also the difficulty in shooting certain scenes as you’re aware of with what you’ve seen. So we shelved it for a couple of years. This is not something new. We’ve been working on this story for probably the last decade. And what was it during lockdown?

Aaron Mak (10:39):
I think it was in 2021 that we began, I think I mentioned this in a previous show, but I started getting really obsessed buying up comics and then one day, funny, I think I told the story differently in the past, so let me set the record straight. Josh was the one who came to me and said, since you’re so into comics, you ever think about what if we did God’s among men as a comic? And that was the spark that had us start rolling in. I started thinking about right because of the visual storytelling opportunities of comics and we didn’t have to worry about so many of the other issues that we might’ve faced with film production. The comics gave us all this freedom to really tell the story exactly how we wanted to.

Josh Mak (11:28):
And when we started this idea, we knew nothing about comics.

Aaron Mak (11:33):
I knew something

Leigh Chalker (11:37):

Josh Mak (11:37):
Reading it.

Aaron Mak (11:38):
You didn’t know about making

Josh Mak (11:39):
The same

Aaron Mak (11:39):
Thing. Exactly. I knew about reading.

Josh Mak (11:41):
That’s not somebody saying I know how to eat. It’s not the same as

Leigh Chalker (11:47):
Awesome. Yeah, yeah, that’s what we want. Drama. Yeah, drama. Come on man, this is what we want. This will bring the viewers. Just drop one on him, Josh, just out of love, man. Just as brother.

Josh Mak (12:08):
There’ll be a lot more of that. You should see when we’re working on the storylines, it’s arguments all day.

Leigh Chalker (12:14):
Yeah, yeah. No man, I argue with myself. I can only imagine what it’s like to argue with your siblings. So it’s like that’s cool man. I do love hearing stories of first time comic books and stuff like that, creators and things. I also like hearing that these stories and this story in particular has gestated with you for such a long time that would indicate to me just from my understanding of how I feel and that story has a great deal of substance because genuinely I think that if you’ve got an idea, I guess to quote David Lynch for a particular moment, ideas like fish, anyone can have them, but it’s the ones that hang around in the deeper you go into the thought and the process and the story, the bigger the fish you catch. You know what I mean? So the longer you stay with the story and it just keeps growing and growing the bigger fish man, and that’s a good thing.

So there’s a lot of substance from what I read with Gods amongst men. And certainly further on in the interview, I don’t want to delve too far into how abouts you became familiar with certain situations because that may be a pickles moment, but we’ll get there because it certainly is interesting, man. It brought back a lot of thoughts for me when I was reading it. So that’s how I very much became interested in it because I saw a truth in it. So I can appreciate that. And that’s the best sort of storytelling I believe is truth. So from where it’s coming from and where it begins now, I don’t want to leave my great mate Ben out hanging up on the clothes line out there, talking to Ben now. Ben, how in your words, did you come into contact with the Mack brothers? What brought you into together?

Ben Sullivan (14:40):
Yeah, it all came together. Aaron, you got it to me through Instagram and that was the last time I used Instagram too. So you got me on the tail end of it all. I’ve got to get back onto it too. It’s shameful and I will. But we met up at a cafe somewhere near your way, a midway point, and I think I got there first and I saw you waiting or I think I saw you. I thought I saw that could have been you outside and hey Gary,

Leigh Chalker (15:19):
Right Gary, they are the ideal medium to tell tough stories. Sorry Ben. Gary Cha just said comics are the ideal medium to tell tough stories. Wholeheartedly agree.

Aaron Mak (15:30):
Thank you, Gary. Thank you.

Ben Sullivan (15:33):
So I dragged you in Aaron, I think into the cafe and we sat down and what did you show me first? I think it was most of the music that you do, Josh, and you were filming Aaron, and when you say they have done films before, I saw that. And what these boys do on film is serious stuff. They know what they’re doing. So when they say they could have commit this to film, my God, that’d be interesting to see. But yeah, we sat down and talked about the concept, which I think you all said Aaron, before that I got roped into the concept. I did. But I think it was the filming and the gorilla filming you were doing with one of the videos that actually really sold me. I thought if you could do that gorilla stuff, then you’re serious. And I love that seriousness. So yeah, we spoke for what, we were there for a while, weren’t we? And you outlined this concept cause of men and another concept which we’re going to do in possibly five years, which we can’t talk about hopefully.

Aaron Mak (16:45):

Ben Sullivan (16:47):
Got a lot to do.

Aaron Mak (16:49):
Yeah, but we’ll do it.

Ben Sullivan (16:51):
Yeah, he he a

Leigh Chalker (16:51):
Beautiful man.

Ben Sullivan (16:53):
Yeah, we sat down with a coffee and a few concepts,

Leigh Chalker (16:56):
The seed grows and I’m just going to confirm with the Mack brothers that I’ve had a couple of more than a couple conversations with Ben. And when you get rolling with some ideas, I would say Ben’s one of my favorite people to jam with man and riff with when it comes to ideas because it just boom, boom, boom, boom, backwards, you forward, breathe life into it, things start what was like shade becomes a real shape and starts to get a real vibe and a flow to it, man. And heaps of fun, man. So I could just imagine the conversation and I wish I was a fly on the wall because Ben, other than the visual stuff, which guys we will get back to in a tick because I’m super interested in seeing here, talking to you about that side of stuff. When you saw the visual stuff, Ben, did you automatically in your mind just pick up what they were putting down, man? Did you think like, oh, I can see this. Was it starting to ignite?

Ben Sullivan (18:12):
Not entirely. I think the first thing I saw Aaron, and no insult here, it was your drawings. I think you would, I say storyboarded maybe. I guess that

Aaron Mak (18:28):

Ben Sullivan (18:29):

Josh Mak (18:32):
Yeah, drawing

Ben Sullivan (18:33):

You’ve proved yourself Aaron, already on the comic. We did, yes. With sis, yeah. Make a comment. Yeah. Well actually, apart from the video that they had, which showed a lot, I mean there are other movies that they’ve made that point to Gods among men that they’ve done beforehand, which I’d seen. But I think actually there’s a few things here. A lot of it came through in the script. Most of all I’d say Josh is, if you don’t mind me saying a beautiful writer, I’ll say that he puts words down just properly, I’ll say nicely, beautifully and meaningfully. And that came through in another story that you wrote, light, which Oh yeah. Extended version I suppose you’d say.

Josh Mak (19:37):
Okay, right.

Ben Sullivan (19:38):
But a lot of that came through in the script as well, anyway. Which is a lot of you as well there, Aaron as well. You wrote, I think, how did it work you Josh, in a sense?

Josh Mak (19:49):
I was a good copy. Paster. Okay, we’ll go chron. So before we even thought of a film, I started writing it as a book,

Ben Sullivan (19:57):

Josh Mak (19:58):
There was no form to this book really. It was almost like a diary, just writing it out, whatever came to mind, just write, write, write. And it was a mess because it didn’t really follow chronology. It was almost like a Christopher Nolan film. It just jumps around all over the place. But from that is how we would then try to make sense of it and extract what we were going to do. And from those several chapters I wrote, we managed to develop a script for what was to be the pilot that we wanted to shoot,

Aaron Mak (20:33):
Which is now issue

Josh Mak (20:35):
One. Yeah. Which became issue one eventually.

Aaron Mak (20:37):
And Ben got, see that was I think the opening and a few chapters, that was what you read Josh’s chapters.

Leigh Chalker (20:46):
So each of your issues that, hello Dave, how are You Champion? That’s a champion of a man, that fella. Yeah, that’s right. Each of your issues. The Omni Bow, I think the Mack Brothers of the coolest hair in the business. Just saying, I’m not going to bug you. Alright, I’ve got nothing there man. I had a shave even I’ve got eyebrows. There you go. I’m not even going to put my eyebrow against them, man. They’re looking too good. So just get me out of here, but heckle, there you go. Let’s move on. So I’m assuming that the issues or chapters of your book were based on what you would’ve had as episodes of it when you decided to think about a TV show?

Josh Mak (21:41):
Not exactly, because I guess when you write it as a series, we sat down and thought how many episodes, how many seasons? We weren’t thinking about whether we could afford it. We just tried to map it out. I’m not sure if I’ve said this before, but roughly I would say the entire story takes place across seven, eight years, something like that. So we thought how do we condense seven or eight years because there’s so many stories within that timeframe. So it was a matter of which stories do we tell what is pivotal to the thing. Otherwise it could just run on indefinitely. I dunno if the comic is going to be one issue per episode of what it was going to be, the form might have changed a little bit. I think it would probably be a bit more spread out.

Leigh Chalker (22:34):
You were just mentioning also too that we won’t divulge details, but there’s other stories that Ben has said that he’s read that you guys were mentioning are tied into God’s amongst men. So I’m assuming that God’s among Men is like your foundation, your main story travel line, and you’ve got other little worlds that you are trying to connect and root out. Is that something that’s fair?

Josh Mak (23:09):
No, I think actually what Ben was referring to was it wasn’t called God Among Men at the start.

Leigh Chalker (23:15):

Josh Mak (23:16):
Yeah, the book was called The Way and The Truth in the Absence of Light.

Leigh Chalker (23:21):
Yep, yep. Okay, that’s cool. So what brought it to Gods Among Men?

Josh Mak (23:27):
How did that come about? I think because the book was called The Way and The Truth and the Absence of Light, which is such a long title, we just felt we needed something a bit cleaner and more concise. And God’s Among Men was a name that I had been toying around with for years and we just thought this is the perfect opportunity to use it.

Leigh Chalker (23:53):
Yeah, yeah. Was that I like it. It’s a good title. I’m assuming that every title it will become clearer as people read into the story of what it is all about. I do have to say Josh, I am partial to long titles. I like things like Charles Bakowski, what was it? If Max Barard is watching, he’ll probably correctly quote me, but this Mad Life and falling through these windows as they cut me as I fall down or something was the name of one of his short stories. I just always liked those long trendy things. So there’s a part of me, there’s a part of me that’s a little bit sad that he didn’t go with the big long one man. So hopefully that comes up in a song somewhere that you crank out one of these days. Do,

Josh Mak (24:49):
I dunno if it’s giving its stuff away, but it’s all right since we’ll do it on Chinwe, so that title is not getting thrown away. My band, my previous band was called C Nation, which is also where Ation Comics comes from. And because they were the medium that we used to tell all these stories through songs, that’s why we kept the name for the comic company as well.

Leigh Chalker (25:11):

Josh Mak (25:12):
That title is going to appear on the second album we released whenever that is.

Leigh Chalker (25:19):
Nice. Well I like it, Josh, thank you for that exclusive, man. That’s super cool, man. I really appreciate that and grateful for that little information drop, man. So nice one champ. Yeah, yeah, yeah. No, that’s a good one. That’s a good one. See, this is what chinwag is, man. It’s fluid. You just talk about stuff, man. You just roll. That’s what we like, man. It’s just rolling and with Now one thing, Josh, you are music’s your thing now, I guess I’m focusing on you a little bit Josh at the moment because I haven’t met you before now, and I just want to pick your brain a little bit, man. So your music orientated storyteller. So the music and that title is going to be the name of the second album. So I am starting to see that these things are all winding in together like a big ball of string, man. So with your songs, when you’re writing the music as the music flowing into the story as well, are there links between the comic book, the story, your song lyrics, how you write and tunes, that sort of stuff?

Josh Mak (26:45):
You just mentioned a term before when you said I was a music. Was it music? Music oriented storyteller? Yeah, I think of myself more as a story oriented musician. Musician,

Leigh Chalker (26:58):
Yeah, yeah, yeah. That’s cool. Understood.

Josh Mak (27:01):
Even when people talk about, I play guitar and in my current band and intonation I was singing and playing guitar, but I always saw myself as a writer first and foremost. And even in music, that’s a really big deal for me. I find that the lyrics are the most important thing, not the music that comes second, or to put it in another way, melody is last and lyrics are love.

Leigh Chalker (27:34):
I get that. I get that man. Yeah, I’ve,

Josh Mak (27:38):
I’ve always been telling the story through the songs. The problem is in a song because of the, I’m constrained by the time and you do have to stick to certain things like the melody and verse, chorus, stuff like that. Sometimes we don’t, but most of the time you do. So I could only give you, not even tell the story, but give you a snapshot of a individual moment. I couldn’t bring things in like dialogue or characters. So the songs on their own, you’re not going to be able to figure it out. But the songs together with the comic book will expand further upon it.

Leigh Chalker (28:11):
Yes, very nice. So this world is building and I like it. I like where you’re going with this, man. It’s good stuff. Creativity is a beautiful thing. Josh, you’ve never heard me rambling on one of these chin wags before. I am a massive fan of creativity and think the creativity is one of the most other than love obviously because all about love with me, but creativity man is one of the most awesome and most important and integral things I believe that make people find or allow people to find peace and allow people to find themselves because creativity can get you through anything. I also like to just emphasize creativity to me doesn’t just mean drawing and writing music. It could be being chef, it could be being a swordsman, it could be being a sportsman. It’s getting into that flow, that zone, that stream of conscience where you are just one. And that’s exactly what you need to do at that moment. And you find yourself, you become whole for that moment. And that’s what I love about creativity and Josh, that’s what I’m picking up from you, man. So I’m all for that. So when you come up with these ideas, Josh, I’m thinking obviously we haven’t seen any 50 cuffs here tonight, but I’m thinking that that Aaron’s to a certain extent your sounding board and is just to get a little insight into how the Mack brothers work.

Is Aaron the sort of dude that’s sitting at the typewriter and he’s madly tapping away while you are pacing backwards and forwards going, I got this idea and I got that idea and Aaron’s like, hang on a minute, minute, is that how it works or is it a calm over a coffee like drop a few coffee goes roll man,

Josh Mak (30:02):
That’s bang. Aaron likes to use this analogy or he used to anyway, he used to say that I was like a natural spring and he was the fountain.

Leigh Chalker (30:20):

Josh Mak (30:20):
Recently I said to him, I’m not a natural spring, I’m more like a steaming hot geyer. Everyone’s trying to harness the power from it, but every now and then it burns him.

Leigh Chalker (30:35):
Gotcha. Well, a streaming hot guer would be handy in winter. It does get a little bit chilly down there in Melbourne. So maybe moving on to the next issue. Maybe you can do most of your riding in winter. Maybe that’s a suggestion too, to keep things better. It burns

Josh Mak (30:55):
In winter.

Leigh Chalker (30:56):
Oh no, we don’t need that. There’ll be an ambulance out the front creative session at the Mack Brothers house and they’ll be like bloody Victorian ambulance out the front having lunch mate waiting for someone. It’s like, oh no. But no, it’s lovely to see the two of you have got such a nice creative thing going on, man. And I do really love the fact that so much creativity is running through the two and I can see you’re close, you know what I mean? Which is good. So it’s sort of thing comes through your work too from what I read as well. Now what I do want to talk to you about is we’ve heard from Ben briefly, we’re not leaving you hanging out there brother up there on top. I’m not leaving you. Don’t trust me. Trust me. How when the burns were, hello sk, how are you buddy? Nice to see you. Thanks for watching again. Champion, when the ambulance had left and the Vera had been spread plentifully across both of you and stuff and you were calm and milk was poured and the wounds were healing, at what point did you decide to, okay, Aaron, my brother, your artwork’s not going to cut it on this one, man. Thanks for trying.

I dunno or not. I’m just going with what everyone’s saying. I’m roofing here too. What was the point where you went, we need to find someone that’s wicked good

Aaron Mak (32:40):
Straightaway? That was straightaway very,

Josh Mak (32:45):
We never for a second did we entertained that Aaron was going to be illustrator on his comic.

Aaron Mak (32:55):
I knew that from the get go and I think although part of me was enjoying that process of doing up a storyboard, I knew I couldn’t get to the level where we wanted to tell the story. So yeah, so those storyboards don’t cut it. I think storyboard standards,

Josh Mak (33:14):
I, I’ve got a story that sort of relates to this, but it’s a bit of a sidetrack. Do you mind?

Leigh Chalker (33:19):
No, man, this is Chinwag. It’s fluid, man. We go.

Josh Mak (33:24):
So in my current band called Anna, we were looking for a drummer at the start of it, and Aaron had recently just started picking drums up as a hobby and he came to me and he said, look, I don’t know if I’m good enough, but I really like the tryout for the band. And a couple of days later we found this drummer and I saw a video of him and I showed it to Aaron and I said, dude, I don’t want to break your heart, but just have a look at this guy, this guy, and you’re not even going to want to turn up for the audition.

Aaron Mak (33:58):
Let’s be frank. And Ben has seen them play and he’s seen this drum. Hell yeah, he’s a good, not a good player. The moment I saw that video, I immediately knew. I was like, there’s not a chance in hell. And that’s the part I think that people should be honest with themselves when they get put in these situations. There’s things that I’m confident in, and there was that moment there when I knew, I’m like, I still like the drum for fun, but I’m like, I will very possibly never catch up to this guy and a good friend of mine too, because he’s still practicing and he’s got that much experience ahead of him,

Josh Mak (34:38):
I guess. Yeah, we didn’t have time to cross our fingers and hope that Aaron would develop a natural flare for drawing. So

Aaron Mak (34:50):
There was work to be done. The hardest part

Josh Mak (34:54):
Was not finding somebody who could draw, because there’s a lot of people in the world who can draw. They’re all over Instagram, same way. There’s a lot of people who can drum or play guitar, whatever it is. The first roadblock we hit was people getting uncomfortable with the subject matter, reading the script and seeing what we had written down. And we felt if you are uncomfortable with issue one where this is going, it’s going to get a lot worse for you. So when we found Ben and I met Ben, and I have to give Ben credit that Ben was so open-minded to the concept that we had, and Ben has been so good at listening to me tell the stories and really absorb that to try to get into that mind frame to be able to present what we’re trying to do. So yeah, respect to Ben for that hundred,

Ben Sullivan (35:51):
It’s the easy part because the story is deeply interesting. So I’m just being pulled along for the ride in that sense because it gets into wild places and it’s just fun for me. So I’m happy to be board.

Leigh Chalker (36:08):
I’m happy you’re all together. Sk thank you for Hi Ben, loved your X ct. Thank you.

Ben Sullivan (36:18):
Yeah, thanks.

Leigh Chalker (36:20):
Yeah, yeah, so I like the fact that you did mention Josh that you’d know from being in a band too, and Ben and I do some work together and chemistry between creative people is important. It’s absolutely important. An organic vibe that just merges, it’s an energy. It’s something that happens with the topical nature of your comic book. I would assume that would definitely, there would’ve been some red flags with people that were coming in and not comfortable with the topic. And one of the things, and I’m going to double down on your appreciation of Ben, is Ben ain’t scared. And it’s like if you get him and it’s story related, he’s going to give it a go. And that’s what I like about working with Ben is if it’s got substance, he’ll give it a go and he’ll give it a red hot crack. And that’s all you can do with things, man. And the artwork is awesome. As anyone that knows Ben Sullivan’s artwork will know an amazing storyteller in terms of pictorially, page layouts, et cetera, top-notch stuff, man. There’s a lot of Ben Sullivan artwork out there as well in the world, so do look him up. Hopefully sooner rather than later, Ben puts himself back onto Instagram and Facebook so people can see.

Yeah, but it’s going to be across over the course of the next month, et cetera. We’ll get into this a little bit later too, and tonight we’ll get the opportunity so you guys can see some Ben artwork for Gods and Monk men as well. And the Kickstarter, as we were talking about earlier, does kick off early next week, so we’ll get into some of that a little bit later. But I’m really liking talking about this creativity stuff because I won’t harp on about it too much because I do want to allow you guys to have some conversation. But on Chinwag, Aiden Roberts is an individual that does music and did a soundtrack to his comic Dead City Lullabies, but he did that himself. I’ve never come, I haven’t had the pleasure of two brothers that seemed to be minded to an extent in their creative process and brought in an artist that was on point with them as well.

One thing in the creative process, I do want to ask Aaron with how you said your artwork and your drawing was in a storyboard type sense. Were any of those storyboards given to Ben to say, this is what I’m thinking, and then Ben and Ben, you can answer this too, but if you want, were there things that you like when you’re reading the script, you did see an Aaron and go, I like it and vice versa and came back. I know you like to talk bud, when you are doing your artwork, you like to text and ring and vibe it out while you go, so yeah. Yeah,

Ben Sullivan (40:06):
Yeah, yeah. Well, Aaron, you’re taking a lot of heat with your drawing tonight and sorry about that. That first storyboarding did actually say a lot. I thought it said a lot of the tone that was, I was sort of gathering. I can’t remember if you showed me that first day or after that first day we talked. I think it did actually.

Aaron Mak (40:25):
I think it was, that was my whole thing with the reason why I did storyboards was that, and even back when Josh and I were working together to make these music films, I never did the story, the key purpose of my storyboards was just to be able to convey to, at that point in time was the videographer and then with Ben was I could see certain images in my head and even though I didn’t have the illustrative literacy to communicate that, I just needed to get enough of it through so that there was a visual reference and then further elaborate on it with words

Ben Sullivan (41:03):
Kind of mapping your way forward, I suppose. Right?

Aaron Mak (41:06):
Yeah. It’s like a very roadmap, but I think that’s that thing where I guess a lot of the times I’m sort of the intermediary between Ben and Josh essentially bridging, sorry, I just got a low battery notification, but I’m going to save this and make sure we’re all, yeah, I think really bridging that gap between the words and the images I guess.

Leigh Chalker (41:36):
Yeah. No, it’s beautiful man. It’s really good. There’s chemistry vibe in between the three of you here.

Ben Sullivan (41:43):
There’s one section. Yeah, absolutely. There’s one section you really did there, which is I think kind of covered the first seven pages I think really, but I think that said enough of the tone of what the whole thing kind of was, and I guess that first seven is a little different to the rest of it, but it summed up a lot, Aaron, so credit credit’s due. It was good.

Josh Mak (42:09):
Aaron, one of Aaron’s strengths is he’s really good at looking at it as a film. That’s what Aaron and I have worked together on, is we always look at it as a film because that was the original intention and Aaron has to lay that out almost the same way as cinematographer. We look at a scene and that’s something that gives us a lot of very unique angles, or sometimes they become splash pages. I think we’ve got more splash pages in issue one that a comic usually would have, but because we wanted to cram so much information and we discussed it with Ben and Ben felt that was needed.

Leigh Chalker (42:50):
I love a good splash page, mate. It’s like, don’t you worry about that good splash page is never wasted, man. They’re super strengths in a comic book. Let me tell you,

Aaron Mak (43:00):
At the end of the day, for us it was that my, I guess strength is always in a visual storytelling medium. So whether it was film or comics, Josh would tell me the hot gaer would spur very powerful but dangerous gases. And I would jump in and I’ll go, okay, let’s turn these hot words into the energy that is images, rough images, and Ben would then turn those images into real energy that doesn’t burn people and feels good, warms your house.

Leigh Chalker (43:38):
Yeah, yeah. Well yeah, I guess that’s part of the beauty of comic books, isn’t it? You know what I mean? The fact that it will burn in people, but in their minds, you know what I mean? Because there’s going to be some stuff that, I mean, I haven’t delved too much further into what I read because what I saw was enough for me, and I’m a bit of a comic book, I guess classicist to an extent where I actually like to hold the comic book, so I don’t tend to read a lot of digital things I do, don’t get me wrong, I’m not like an egghead toff sort of thing, but I like comic books, so I like to have that feel. And the weird thing where you smell the paper and you can analyze the art, it’s just how I’ve always enjoyed comic books, the medium itself, the appreciative nature of it, and I’m really looking forward to seeing where the story goes afterwards.

I guess I don’t want to take it in a pickles direction, so please only answer to the level that you’re all comfortable with. Now, for people that don’t know, it is a truthful story about addictions. It’s a truthful story about decisions, right, wrong, whatever those decisions are for the individual and the character at the time were made. And I’m not judging that character in the book at all. I’m just simply portraying to people that may be watching or have no idea about what God’s amongst man is. And some of those decisions are difficult to understand, but it was done and articulated in a way that, again, truthfully from someone like myself that has been in those positions, because I’ve made it very clear to people that watch the show, I am an ex-addict of alcohol and drugs. That’s into my third year of sobriety, and these are truths that I also have to face is these things were in my past and that’s what drew me into the story, I guess. Josh, when you were initially planting the seed to this story, man, focus on you because the idea seems to have seeded with you at this stage from the conversation.

Why did you head down that darker alleyway, man? Why did you go down there? Because I like it. I like the fact you’ve gone down there to shine some light man in this darkness. So what was it that took you down there, man?

Josh Mak (46:48):
Well, I think first of all, I want to say addiction is an element in the overall story. I don’t think it’s really a story about addiction, not in the conventional way, but in some sense it’s kind of a love story,

Just not in what people normally expect of a love story. But to me it’s a love story. If you look in the pages that you’ve seen and in issue one, we actually do give you glimpses at where this is going. I don’t know how obvious they are because they’re kind of like little images or clues. It may not make sense at this stage when you read issue one, but it gives you a bit of a peek into the way it goes. I decided to write this because for me, when I was writing music for the band, I always felt I wanted to tell stories that didn’t get told. And because of my path and choices in life, for better or worse, I have been given insight into a lot of stories that people dunno. I think as the series goes on, you start, it might become a little more foreign and less relatable, but at the same time people will be able to recognize things in it.

Leigh Chalker (48:10):
That’s good. I am waiting until Stu Thornton, great work guys, well written and beautiful artwork. Good on you, Stu. Thank you for supporting the show, mate. I obviously, even though you’ve taken the story off, as we will see in further issues and the Easter eggs that you’ve said are planted in those first eight issues that I’ve read, that’s why I’ve chosen not to read any further. I’ve wanted to grow, man, you know what I mean? And see where this thing goes. So from what you’ve just said there, even though comic books can take it off into certainly surreal and existential places and things like that, the initial seed was obviously something very close to you from experiences that you’ve had, and you wanted to portray that in the Josh Mack way as best as you could. Fair? Yes. That’s a beautiful thing, man. That’s very good. Now you’ve mentioned, you’ve mentioned love quite a few times.

It is love grows in the strangest places, Josh, you know what I mean? Like from darkness, there’s togetherness and wholeness and you meet people and it’s a beautiful thing. So basically what I’m trying to tell people that are reading it is that when you see the Kickstarter address pop up it, press the notify button so that you can get the email when it launches next week, and there it is, gam studio. So it’s going to launch next week and we’ll talk more about it because it’s very, very good. And I do love comic books, you all know that. That’s why I love Chinwag and I do love meeting creators and peoples involved in the community. It’s very important to me. But this one really did strike a chord and maybe it’s something obviously that I can relate to. But yes, I would strongly suggest if you want to check out some good stuff comic wise in Australian comics, I can only think of a handful of Australian comic books that I’ve read that are similar to this. I’m actually one that it reminded me of Josh and Aaron in particular is there’s an Australian creator that he’s been around a long time, and his name’s Bo Jardine, was known as Beaumont America. He’s had a few different names.

He’s Bo Jardine and many years ago, and he spoke about it on a chinwag I did with him, not the Christmas previous. He has done several comic books based on his real life experiences of his addictions as well. One called Pothead and the other one was about, I can’t think of the name off it off the top of my head. If anyone out there can remember the name of Beau or Beau watching the name of your comic book, man, throw it up there now because they were awesome comic books for people to look at onto that alleyway as well, man. And they resonated with much love as well. So it’s all about sometimes you’re on the bottom man, but you can always get to the top. So there’s always hope in that. And she’s really cool, man. I like comic books like that. I like comic books.

I challenge people. I think if you challenge people, some people may be uncomfortable with that, but they see a seriousness in the medium because this is me just rambling sometimes I think the comic books, people that aren’t really familiar with comic books, see and there’s, look, this is me talking, it’s just no offense to anyone that likes these comic books I’ve mentioned, but sometimes you’ve got your Supermans and you’ve got your Batmans and the general populace that doesn’t read like comic books generally and Archie’s and things like that. They generally associate comic books with those sort of characters and that is a beautiful thing. They’ve been around for a long time. There’s many wonderful, great stories. I’m not absolutely taking anything away from those creators or anything that has given to those ips over the years. I’ve got plenty of those comic books. But it is very refreshing for me to see people taking a chance and doing things that the average person that’s never read a comic book before could read and go, damn, man, I had no idea comic books were about this.

And if I reckon you can do that with your comic books in your creativity in any field, that’s a good place to be, man. And I think that’s what’s happening right here with God’s among Men. So that’s what I would say to the three of you, and I’m really looking forward to seeing where all of this goes, man. Now to keep me quiet so I can have another sip of my ginger beer, we were talking before the show, and for all of those people out there that have not seen any of Ben’s artwork, there’s a couple of pages that the three of them have agreed that Ben can pop up on the screen when he is ready. And we’ll bring up a full page, a full screen shot so people can see this beautiful artwork. And I guess we’ll let the Mack brothers and Ben talk their way through the page and the flow and give people a bit of a vibe. And so you can get a vibe as to what’s happening. So whenever you are ready, Ben, hold it up. And

Ben Sullivan (54:11):
Yeah, as you know, I am holding it up. It’s not on the screen. I’m still Stone age, so here it is one. Anyway. Oh, sorry,

Leigh Chalker (54:24):
Look at that.

Ben Sullivan (54:30):
This is what, page seven? Yeah, yeah, yeah. So this is before, oh God, I just got a blank color. Wilson Wilson Go has colored it. That’s before He is, had his amazing work over the top.

Aaron Mak (54:56):
This was the very first page that we came together and this was the very first page you did.

Ben Sullivan (55:03):
It is too.

Aaron Mak (55:08):
I remember when this was after we had our meeting and we had met Josh and we talked, and for some reason we decided to do page seven first instead of page one. And when Ben sent that over John, I were like, wow, it’s really beautiful stuff. Thank you guys. And it’s true. Ben just did such an amazing, it blew our minds. We saw that.

Leigh Chalker (55:31):
Get back to that point when you first saw Ben right there, I want to know the Parer, you would’ve seen that page together for the first moment. What was it like seeing Ben bring you that and keep those beautiful comments coming in about Ben’s artwork? Beautiful.

Aaron Mak (55:54):

Josh Mak (55:55):
I don’t know what I was expecting to see. It definitely wasn’t that in the best possible way. That blew me away. I had seen it in a film medium for so long in my mind, I could only see it in this realism setting of action. But Ben managed to, the beautiful thing that Ben’s able to do is he can take a real scenario, but you are able to expand on it because you have that freedom in comics and some areas you can overlay images or even put things down like what’s in the mind of the character. And yeah, that page just blew me away and it kind of gave us the heading for what direction we wanted to take in terms of style and how it’ll look.

Leigh Chalker (56:47):
Now, next question I’m going to ask you is who di that one out of the per like, who’s got that one? They pulled Ben aside and go, Hey Ben, I’m going to keep that page for myself, mate. One, do you have to have that? Because if mind you though, you got to watch Old Ben, he likes to draw on the back of other pages too. So

Aaron Mak (57:13):
Has that piece is just beautiful seeing this person. Now that piece along with two pages is actually going to be up on our Kickstarter. We’re going to make it available.

Leigh Chalker (57:30):

Ben Sullivan (57:32):

Aaron Mak (57:33):
Lovely. So if you guys like Ben Sullivan are, and the word on the street is Ben Sullivan. Art is the hot new thing. It’s not even new.

Leigh Chalker (57:43):
It’s not new, man, it’s just hot. You what I mean, don’t worry about it. It’s guys arelike, man. You know what I mean? You’re getting down there house, man. You wait, the four bugger, buy that piece of that out of the envelope, man. Spontaneous combustion gone. Since we’re

Aaron Mak (58:06):

Josh Mak (58:06):
Off your art band, would you like to show people the other pitch that’s going to be available in Kickstarter?

Ben Sullivan (58:11):
Yes. Was it

Aaron Mak (58:15):
H one? Not the spoiler heavy. Page 22.

Ben Sullivan (58:18):
No, no, no, no. Is that right?

Aaron Mak (58:22):

Ben Sullivan (58:23):
Ah, ah,

Leigh Chalker (58:25):

Ben Sullivan (58:26):
Yeah. So yeah, that’s it. Oh, I won’t talk about it, but

Aaron Mak (58:32):
Oh, you can,

Ben Sullivan (58:33):
Oh, well that’s for a point of view from the Shrine. That’s where it all begins. Melbourne Shrine looking out towards the city. What is that West? Wait, east, isn’t it? Yeah,

Aaron Mak (58:48):
That’s already more specific than we had down Pat.

Ben Sullivan (58:53):
Oh, right. Well, yeah, yeah. And of course, again, Wilson Go has done beautiful colors over the top of that as well. His work is awesome.

Leigh Chalker (59:05):

Aaron Mak (59:07):
We’re so honored to be able to work with such amazing artists who really took this idea that has been developed for so long, and then being able to see Ben put down pencils and then inks, and then Wilson came in to do the colors, and it’s like, I must say there was a moment when we received the first proof copy that the tear just about comes to your eye because it it’s, it’s almost not just a story when you’ve worked on something for so long, it’s almost, oh, what was that? We’re going to, should we show it? Should we talk about it?

Leigh Chalker (59:50):
You can absolutely do whatever you like to do. Gentlemen, this is your show.

Aaron Mak (59:55):
I’ll say what it is. This is a proof that we received, and this is what it’s going to look like. We received in the Mail, the Gods Among Men Issue One Foil cover. Would you like to show everyone before I show it? This one is special because it’s only available as Supernova Melbourne, which we are going to be at April 6th and seventh. We managed to grab Siz all the way up from Queensland, and he’s going to bring himself down here to outside of town. And Josh, me, Ben Anna, who is, she’s a big part of the other comic that we’re working on. Yeah, we can talk about that later. And we’re all going to be there at Supernova.

Leigh Chalker (01:00:40):
Alright, so that’s you guys coming in at the Melbourne Supernova, which is not this weekend, the following weekend,

Aaron Mak (01:00:52):
Sixth and 7th of April. That’s

Leigh Chalker (01:00:54):

Aaron Mak (01:00:56):

Leigh Chalker (01:00:57):
Yeah. And the whole Gam crew is going to be there, plus Anna, who we will, while we’re mentioning Anna, we will bring into people’s consciousness, the Anna Comic book, but before we get there, Ben’s going to be there and s is going to be there. So if you want to meet Siz, it’s the first time he’s been to a Melbourne supernova and stuff with these boys. There’s going to be a big comic community of people there and other creators that are there. So if you do like Australian comics, you’ll want to meet Australian creators. You want to drop a couple of bucks and pick up a few comic books, there’ll be deals, there’ll be wheeling, there’ll be things going on. It will be awesome, Dave, I would strongly suggest that get on down there and say good day to some people, because you know what?

They’re all really friendly. Hey, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting a lot of them myself, and they’re good people, man. They just like drawing, they like talking, they like shit breeze. And they’re just ripping away, man. And it would shred and create creativity. So go and support so they can buy some more ink so they can keep pumping out those pages and buy a new laptop because poor Aaron there, his keyboards broken because Josh is just hammering him with brotherly love and stuff. It’s just one of those things, man. But no, that should be great, man. I’m really glad you’re all getting together for that. That’ll be a big one. And there’ll be so many things because what I will mention before we get on to Anna is now si, am I allowed, just bring it up on the comments. Are we allowed to discuss the fact that there’s a whole heap of sizzle comic books going to be down there and you can get seven comics, comics for $55 or $50 note?

Is that better to ask? Just do it and I’ll beg for forgiveness later. So anyway, look, to get around all that, there’ll be some specials there. So there it is, boom. On cue, it’s Magic. So there you go. Comic Studio. Get all seven of these comic books right there for 55 bucks or $50 cash. We’ll get ’em for you. And that’s the Tacular sizzle edition. So all of those people, you’ve got Ryan Val’s Battery Hand, you’ve got Dhan Lizza Ray, you’ve got Shaden Jews, no Man’s Lands, you’ve got Peter Wilson’s Foes, you’ve got Max Ferrata, Stella Lands, and you’ve got the Shane Sizzle, Kerry Harris character, SRIs, I guess compilation, anthology story book SRUs. And guess what, mate? Bens in that one too. The Man’s everywhere. So go and get yourself. Just go on, go and say Good Day and pick up some comic books. But don’t forget, pick up the Gods amongst Men Foil Cover. While you’re there, talk to these dudes about, and let’s go. What’s happening with the Ana comic book? How’s that? All work into things, gentlemen.

Aaron Mak (01:04:15):
Well, since Ben’s got the comic, Ben, would you like to start us off? Yeah,

Ben Sullivan (01:04:20):
Well actually, I think this is yours, Josh. This is really about the band. I’ll let

Aaron Mak (01:04:26):
Ben show you guys the front cover first.

Ben Sullivan (01:04:30):
Yeah, so that is Anna

Aaron Mak (01:04:33):
Ben Sullivan,

Ben Sullivan (01:04:36):
And yeah, here is Josh, I’ll say, yeah, and there’s the Ara Boris logo as well, which is, yeah, that’s a great concept. That one for logo.

Leigh Chalker (01:04:56):
So I’m looking there and I’m seeing that’s a limited edition comic book, is that correct? What’s that? 150.

Aaron Mak (01:05:04):
So last year in July, we went out on a music video. Music video. We’re talking about, no, we’re talking about The Limited. Yeah, so sorry. Last year in July, we No,

Josh Mak (01:05:19):
No, we should start with how it started.

Aaron Mak (01:05:21):
I thought we should just touch upon this.

Josh Mak (01:05:23):
We’ll come back to it. We’ll circle around. Look at

Aaron Mak (01:05:25):
This brotherly, look at this hot.

Leigh Chalker (01:05:28):
I like it.

Josh Mak (01:05:30):
I’ll cut the long story short. We were shooting a music video last year. No, let’s

Leigh Chalker (01:05:34):
Go the long story. Josh Co. And man, we’re Chin Wagon. Just let it all out, brother. We’re all friends. No one else is listening. It’s just us. The story

Aaron Mak (01:05:41):
Short, still pretty long.

Josh Mak (01:05:43):
Okay, we were shooting a music video, and those of you who know the band know that we have masks that we were when we were on stage. So Aaron was there, he was directing that video, and during a break he looked at us and he said, you guys took a comic book. And that kind of sparked this idea like, oh, maybe we could make a comic book based on this. Because at the time, we didn’t have any merch. We played about one or two shows, and we didn’t want to do T-shirts, but we knew we needed something to bring to the shows. So when Aaron said, we look like a comic book, that idea and the fact that we were already in the process of making

Aaron Mak (01:06:27):
One with Ben among men,

Josh Mak (01:06:29):
Halfway through about among men at this stage, we thought, okay, let’s try to develop some ideas. So I had to think about it, and I told Aaron, I said, that’s a great idea. I think I’ve got a story for you.

Aaron Mak (01:06:43):
Can I describe how this went down? Okay, so literally I said, I brought the idea up to him and Anna, I said, what if we did a comic book? And then they were just heading out to the shops, and then they went, oh yeah, let’s have a think about it, a brainstorm. They were out of the house for 20 minutes. Josh comes back and he looks at me and goes, I’ve got it. I’m like, well, you’ve got what? And he goes, you the entire concept. And I was like, what? He’s serious. And that’s how the thing started to unravel.

Leigh Chalker (01:07:15):
Yeah. Yeah,

Man, you got it. You get struggle while it’s hot. Man, this is good. I’m just trying to think. So you got that and that’s your merch for your band. Yes. Now at this point, you’re halfway through God’s among Men. Now I want to come back to Josh. You are the storyteller that is a musician with lots of ideas and obviously very visually orientated from the looks of your masks and the layout of your band and your stage presence, et cetera like that. So visually you’re humming their man. You obviously know what you like and what you want. That’s cool, man. That’s a voice. I like that. And then I want to move, but you said earlier that you weren’t essentially comic orientated to begin with, but Aaron was reading a lot of comic books. So I’m going to quickly sneak back into this little zone. Aaron, your comic books, man, what struck you? Why did you go out and get a comic book? What was the first comic book that you picked up that blew your mind, that led you down to this path and onto where we’re headed?

Aaron Mak (01:08:33):
I thought about this. So again, although he said he’s not comic book oriented, I was first sort of, I guess turned onto the idea of comics through him because he used to tell me about back in the day, how he used to try and collect Spawn comics growing up, comic, and they were really hard to collect. And he used to tell me about how he’d love, he was obsessed with sport, I think still is sort of. But then, so I went on online and went on marketplace. I dunno, you can say I’m obsessed. I don’t think I’ve read more than 10 issues in my life. I think he was fascinated by it, especially because in Singapore it’s quite a sort of conservative society. So then you’ve got this thing that’s like hell and he’s violent and he’s doing all these things. So it was kind of frowned upon reading material. So all I had was this nugget of sports. So I went out and I found just any spawn issue. And the issue I first managed to get my hands on was just on Facebook. Marketplace was Spawn issue five. And Billy,

Leigh Chalker (01:09:41):
That’s the Billy Kincaid issue, the Iceman Kin,

Aaron Mak (01:09:44):
There’s a kin. And it just blew my mind that in, was it 19 92, 93

Leigh Chalker (01:09:51):
Ice cream, ice cream, we all screamed for ice cream. I bought that the day I came off the shelf. Man, I’d never read anything like it. That was about 16 at the time. Blew my mind.

Aaron Mak (01:10:00):
Yeah, I think I felt it hit me pretty hard because I didn’t get it at the time. I’ve got it sort of now when people were a bit more desensitized. But when I read that, I think maybe that kind of planted the seed for God’s among men in a way of like, this is what comics can be. Comics can be flashy, comics can be all sorts of different genres, but comics can be dark and you could actually explore such grotesque and taboo topics through this medium of comics. And in a way it was kind of, I guess, easier to swallow than just watching a film film. And so yeah, I’d say it was Spawn issue five, Billy Kincaid that I was like, wow, this is really something.

Leigh Chalker (01:10:53):
Well, I can tell you from buying that, I actually absent minded. I love that how it all started. Hey, good on you, mate. When I bought issue five, and I can tell you I was at the Warna News agents and Warna is in a suburb here called Ong. And I was collecting comics voraciously riding around on my push bike and backpack, stealing my dad’s silver and gold coins and stuff out of the washing machine to subsidize my first obsessive addiction of comic books, man. And I’d have these, I had my map laid out from where this server would sell this and this news agent would sell that, blah, blah. And I went to Marina this Sunday morning and there was Spawn issue five in a news agent’s man, this is where I bought it. And the spawn was initially released in Newsagent. That’s how I got it in Townsville because there wasn’t any bonafide specialized comic book shops.

And I remember picking it up and I remember going home and I remember reading it and just going like, whoa, okay. And my dad was the comic book reader in the house that got me into comic books. He loved Spider-Man, Todd McFarlane did Spider-Man. Dad loved Todd McFarlane for this. Then Todd McFarlane went to Spawn. So dad followed me with Spawn, and I remember dad reading it after me and going, I’ve never read anything like that. I don’t know if that’s wild. That blew his mind at the time. And during that week, and people listening may confirm this with me, it was during that week that there was a TV presenter on Channel seven, I believe, and his name, he was famous, dude, I think he might’ve passed away now if he hasn’t, sorry, but hey, it’s just part of the story. But his name was Darren Hinch, I think his name went from memory.

He actually had a segment on his, this show was like a current affair, man. So 7:00 PM to seven 30, boom, prime time, Monday to Friday, all of the big issues nationwide. A bit of a shock jock on TV telling people how it was. And one of his 10 minute segments was Spawn issue five. And he brought that up about how it should be banned in Australia. It was a disgrace. Kids shouldn’t be reading this, parents rah, rah, rah. And I remember sitting there watching it, and as a kid, do you know what I was thinking? Oh man, let me get issues sick. You know what I mean? And that’s for me how I was thinking about it. But it is, man, like you said, at that time in my memory, being a young fella, that was a really wild comic book man and ballsy. And that’s something that I admire about people that take chances with their art. This is the chinwag, this is how it all rolls around with points and stuff and the flow mate. So very, very cool. What else? Oh, Singapore, when you said you came from Singapore, Josh is, and Aaron just said, I guess it’s a bit more of a, how will we say,

Josh Mak (01:14:34):
Conservative? Conservative.

Leigh Chalker (01:14:35):
Conservative, yes. Yep. Conservative place. And you were reading Spawn. Did you find with your move out of Singapore, was that also possibly, there’s many reasons, but in this case, was it related to the creative Geyer that you had going for lack of a better description at the time that you may not have been able to feed in Singapore, that you had to get out to express yourself differently in Melbourne?

Josh Mak (01:15:12):
Yeah, I think I’ll start with my Spawn journey, and I think it was around 96 and the first issue I ever got was actually curse off the spa eight, I think.

Leigh Chalker (01:15:25):

Josh Mak (01:15:26):
That suture on the front cover. So that was my first introduction to it. They were pretty expensive and I didn’t get ’em until a few years later because it took a while to get to Singapore and there weren’t that many places that did Stockham. I think there was one comic shop in the whole country where you could find it. So that really blew me away. Then I started buying a few issues later. I never had them in sequence. It was kind of what they had in the shop at the moment.

So I wasn’t really able to follow a story or anything like that. And at the end of it, I probably only had 10 comics, but those 10 comics I read and reread and really liked everything about it. From the artwork to the writing, I never really liked other comics. Some of my friends were into it, like X-Men or Spider-Man, which I had one or two, but none of them really grabbed me the way that spawned it. And that’s why all these years later, I was still banging on about it to Aaron, but Singapore was very restrictive in, it’s not a great place to be any sort of creative because it’s more about fitting into the mold and if you don’t, you’re kind of ostracized by everyone. It didn’t really bother me. I didn’t really give a shit when I was there. You don’t make a lot of friends that way. But I never really felt like I needed a lot of friends,

Leigh Chalker (01:16:55):

Josh Mak (01:16:55):
That wasn’t a problem. What was a problem was it was really hard for me to find an audience or anyone really accepting of what I was trying to do, except two or three friends that I played in the band with. So when our family moved to Melbourne, I didn’t really feel upset that I was leaving. I kind of saw it as finally I’m going to get a chance to do the things I want to do. Of course, it would’ve been easy. That’s the journey.

Leigh Chalker (01:17:25):
Yeah, no, that’s cool, man. That’s really good. Look at where you’ve got now. All that creativity is just flooding out of you, dude. No, it’s wicked. It’s very good. Oh, here we go. Dave died. Darren Hinch is still kicking. He may go for mayor in Melbourne at the next election. Well, Dave, yeah, thank you for letting me know. I wasn’t sure because last I heard of Darren m Mate there that he had a lung replacement or I know some sort of internal organ was removed and someone, I dunno, some, I dunno. Look, something happened to him and he wasn’t looking too good, so I hadn’t heard anything more. So obviously not retired if he’s going for mayor. So yeah. Well good stuff Darren. Stick it up on mate.

That’s really cool, man. You got out of there and fire it mate. Now the Anna comic books with your merch, and is the story related to your, well what your visual context with Anna, with the masks and everything, the comic book? Yep, the comic book, is it related to the story of the band or have you created characters of the members of the band? Trying to think, you know how your job Josh Mack here now, but there you may be Alpha Centura one on lead guitar or something and that’s the character, like a kiss type thing. You know what I mean? Have you created that sort of character?

Josh Mak (01:19:20):
Well, the comic is obviously fictional as when you read it or is it, but it creates this story of the band mythology. Yeah, if you will kind of explains why we have the mask, who Anna is. We’ve kind appeared out of nowhere. It expands on a bigger story and with every album that we do, we plan to have at least one song that further explains the stories within the comic. So for our upcoming EP release, it’s the song or Boros, which is also the logo that van drew for us. But if you read the lyrics of that, it expands a little bit more on the story.

Leigh Chalker (01:20:07):
Yeah, yeah. No, that’s awesome, man. That’s really cool because now just from jumping on Facebook the other day today, plug it while we are talking about it. You have a live thing happening very soon about your new film clip coming on Facebook, YouTube soon, something to that effect. Is that correct?

Josh Mak (01:20:36):
Yeah, so on the 29th, so midnight, 29th of March, the EP is released and about three days later, I think on the 3rd of April, the third music video will debut on YouTube and Facebook and all of the social media sites.

Leigh Chalker (01:20:53):
Yeah, yeah, that’s cool. Now while we’re talking about Anna, the band, because we don’t want to get confused either with Anna, Josh’s wife because it’s all tied in together, but at this point we’re talking about Anna, the musical entity. That must be super exciting, that EP coming up and the launch. So the visual side of things with the film clips, that comes from you as well, man. That’s you talking with Aaron or is that someone else that’s come to you with a concept of, I think I could add this to you guys for this song. How did you work with that video production side of things?

Josh Mak (01:21:41):
The first two videos, Aaron, myself and together with Anna, my wife of the character, we sat down together, the three of us discussed how we wanted the video to look and we worked together. Aaron directed it. Anna came up with a lot of the ideas and I would kind of sit around and throw my 2 cents worth in every now and then.

That’s the first two videos. The third video was different. The third video, a very good friend of ours, and he’s a really successful photographer, videographer called Peter Colson. He’s got a massive YouTube channel where he does tutorials on photography and videography, and he’s also a very close friend of Anna and myself. So we’ve always wanted to work with him, but because he’s so busy and he’s constantly traveling all over the world, we never really had a chance to do a project together. So this was the first time we finally managed to catch him while he was in Melbourne and we went to his studio and we said, we want you to do what you do because we’ve got full trust in everything you do. This is the song, you shoot it however you want. And yeah, he did an amazing job. He shot it and edited it and colored it, did everything really quickly.

Leigh Chalker (01:23:02):
His work

Josh Mak (01:23:04):

Aaron Mak (01:23:05):
Is amazing, watching him on set and even at one point he turned to me and said, Aaron, would you like to help me with the lights? And I was like, whoa. Sure. Bit of a fanboy moment. But yeah, no, he is amazing to watch in action.

Leigh Chalker (01:23:22):
Yeah, I think man, obviously the pair of you and it’s tied in with Ben, you communicate well visually, what you want, what your ideas are, you’ve got a voice to what you want. Creativity, creatively, like Ben is the same. You seem to be in a, I would say an attracting phase man, where you’re putting out good vibes of creativity and like-minded people are being sort of pulled to that magnet. You know what I mean? Which is a good thing. You seem to be working really intuitively as well, which you just mentioned that the dude that did the video for part three, you’d met him, you knew him, you liked what he was doing, you trusted him to, this is what we’re about, boom, lay it on me. You’ve basically said the same thing with Ben. You had the opportunity to sit down, you spoke to him, you communicated clearly what you wanted, showed a few things. What vibe? Pick it up. This is what man, you go intuition, man. It’s a good thing. And you seem to be rolling with it at the moment, so I’m thinking that you’ve got some good positive stuff happening around you, man. So I like where this conversation has been going tonight. It’s all about positivity.

Josh Mak (01:24:44):
I mean, I feel a lot of things that I do, if I want to work with an artist in whatever field it is, I tend to the person that I pick, I pick them because I like what they do. I think I’m the same with my guitar company that I work with. And also even down to things like when I got my tattoo done on my arm, I picked an artist because I liked his style and a lot of tattoo artists complained that people come in and they go, I want this, this or Can you do a Mickey Mouse? And that’s not what they do. I tend to go to a guy who I like his style and I give him the basic elements of what I want. I want crawl here, I want to clock here, but however he draws it, I said, draw it in your style. That’s why I came to you. I’m not going to nitpick on little details like that. Same thing with Ben or with Peter. The reason I want to work with them is because I’m a fan of what they do. So I’ll give you that framework, but I’m not going to micromanage the details of it.

Leigh Chalker (01:25:48):
Yeah, I think man, from myself as an artist and a creator and having worked with Ben, we worked on a project with a couple of our mates last year and the year before, and what you’ve just said there is what attracted me to working with Ben and Ryan and Spie was it’s there, the foundation is there, this is what we want, but you’ve got plenty of room to play. And when you give that other creative person room to play in that sphere, it’s amazing what can grow out of that man. Be added to it and things, you know what I mean? I think that’s a good head space of creativity to be in when you are collaborating with people. You know what I mean? I don’t myself, I don’t really like the micromanagement side of things that not really, that doesn’t draw me into a project. No offense to anyone out there that likes to work that way. If we’re all the same in the world, it’d be a very boring place. It’s just that that’s how I like to see creativity is letting all about flow, man, feeling good. I like what you do, let’s rock and roll, that sort of thing. But I’ll tell you, Josh, my next question, would you let Ben design you a tattoo? Do you like he stuff that much? A tattoo for you? Senior? You’re talking about tattoos?

Josh Mak (01:27:22):
Yeah, if I ever do another one, I have to do the current one first. It’s been held up in production for years. Yeah.

Leigh Chalker (01:27:36):
What were you,

Josh Mak (01:27:40):
I think Anna and I, yeah, we answered an interview where somebody asked us if we’d ever tattooed Aura Boris logo and I said, we said something silly. If we got 10 million views, we both get it tattooed, so on the face. Oh yeah, right.

Leigh Chalker (01:27:56):
Alright, so how many viewers have you got?

Josh Mak (01:28:02):
We’ve got over, was it like 15,000 or something?

Leigh Chalker (01:28:08):
You’re racking those numbers up, man, before you know it, you’d be sitting down over your corn flakes and the alarm will go on your phone and you go on. No, 10 million were off.

Josh Mak (01:28:20):
I don’t actually remember what number I said. I’m just guessing it’s 10 million. I’ve got to find that interview somewhere around.

Leigh Chalker (01:28:26):
Yeah, yeah. Well with the amount of creative stuff you are pumping out, mate, you want to hope it’s 10 million because it’s like if you only said a million, you might be hitting that in a couple of weeks, dude, the next time you’re on a chinwag, mate, I won’t recognize you’ll just have a bigger being around your face.

Josh Mak (01:28:45):
We said with Gabe, you didn’t say where so it could be on the bar.

Leigh Chalker (01:28:49):
Oh, so that was Aaron just throwing that out there around the face. Was it? Alright, so Max and Nora, Boris is a snake that eats itself to stay alive, sort of like us creatives using our own lives to create stuff. That’s nice. That is correct. So there you go. Max, where were you when I needed that direct quote? Charlie Gutowski earlier, man. But that’s a good one too. Max, thank you for supporting Chinwag and thank you for watching. That’s another Comex studio creator and he does Stella Lands, so check that out. There’s an upcoming Kickstarter happening for issue two in the next month or so as well. So keep your eyes notified on X. There you go. Stella, X studio on cue. It’s Magic man. Siz and I are just pumped. Fire and fireworks out of each other’s fingers here. It’s insane. Where is this happening?

I dunno what’s going on. It’s all vibing. But anyway, right, so let’s get into, let’s talk about your Kickstarter that’s happening next week because there’s going to be people interested and we can keep talking and vibing and that, but we’ll just move on to what do you got? You’ve got some things coming up. I see there’s trading cards and you’ve got your comic, you’ve got the supernova coming up next week and you’re going to have the foil cover. I mean now is the three of your chance to absolutely plug what is happening in the course of the next 14 days for your creative work together. So fire away.

Aaron Mak (01:30:31):
So see straight away point technical side. So obviously we are going to have available on the Kickstarter print copies, which you’re going to be able to get access to a whole. Basically the story, we do have a very, something a bit different, a page in there which is going to contain three QR codes, which are going to lead you to external media because we really wanted to weave this whole thing of this multimedia thing that this hunt for different clues I guess in our real world that will reveal a little bit more about the wider story. So that’s why you should follow the white rabbit anyway,

Leigh Chalker (01:31:20):
Head down the matrix. Well that’s better than playing that Pokemon game. We used to stick your phone up and chase things around. So there you go. Well, I just went with it. We were talking about Harry Potter before. I’m thinking

Aaron Mak (01:31:36):
Harry Potter Pokemon. This is what the kids love.

Leigh Chalker (01:31:39):
Yeah, well this is how it happens, man. This is Chinwe the power.

Aaron Mak (01:31:46):
So we’re going to have the print copy. We are also offering, so we wanted to do something that was like trading cards, but we’re calling them collectors cards because we wanted to create something that was not going to look cool and something you want to collect them more. But every card contains a character and in each card it’s going to contain a little tidbit of information that’s not included in the comic book. So the whole concept is that these cards, each of them are like mini data books. So if you get the cards along with the comic, you’re going to get that extra little sneak peek into the wider story and also stuff that will be revealed later on. One of the other very special covers, which is going to directly involve Josh and I and Ben as well, is we are doing a special hardcover edition of God’s among Men, right on the money

Leigh Chalker (01:32:39):
Hard cover. He’s obsessed with them boat.

Aaron Mak (01:32:43):
Phenomenal. I knew that’s like the Sweet Honey, the unique hard cover. It’s going to be the comic obviously with the hardcover, but what we are going to do is it’s going to feature a handwritten forward that is written by the main character Jason Lee, and it is also going to include a unique, every copy is going to include a unique remark by Ben. Ben would do a custom little sketch and that will also be, again, every copy is going to get something different, a little Easter egg written Easter egg in the back. And that hardcover is going to include a unique QR code that’s not in the regular print comic that’s going to take you to a video. And I can’t say much about this video, but it’s going to really place Gods among men in our real world.

Leigh Chalker (01:33:37):
Very good, very good. When Josh just stated the idea 10 years ago and you were bouncing this around, did you ever think that it would get you to this point?

Josh Mak (01:33:54):

Aaron Mak (01:33:55):
Not even in the slightest.

Josh Mak (01:33:57):
This is

Aaron Mak (01:33:57):
Truth is stranger than fiction. We couldn’t even have written this pathway for us. This

Josh Mak (01:34:04):
Wasn’t in the plan at all. But what we are, we went different routes to try to get where we wanted to go. This surprised us, but this has allowed us to make use of all the things that we have laid the groundwork for over the years

Leigh Chalker (01:34:23):
And how many, you’ve obviously got scripts and you got Ben sitting up there just hanging, you know what I mean? And Ben’s probably got other pages done because you don’t seem like a pair down the bottom that would be idle by any chance you’d like to see look like you’re moving. So I’m thinking Ben’s the same. And I reckon Ben would have a few little sneaky pages tucked in over there for future stories, which is good. So overall story, arch wise, ongoing limited series, you got any issues, numbers in store or right now we just focus on one. We nail that out, it’s looking good and we see where it goes from there. What’s your plans for the future after this? I would say it’s going to kick some bum.

Josh Mak (01:35:26):
We’ve got a lot of plans. I think executing is just what’s taking us time.

Leigh Chalker (01:35:30):
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Josh Mak (01:35:32):
Among men, what did you say you estimated?

Aaron Mak (01:35:35):
Okay, so ongoing series and from my comic knowledge, I would estimate I had to

Leigh Chalker (01:35:46):
My knowledge, my

Aaron Mak (01:35:47):
Knowledge between 150 to 200 issues to tell the full story that we want to tell because we know how it ends. We know every arc, every plot point and how it ends. And it’s just the details in between.

Leigh Chalker (01:36:05):
And wow, that’s a lot of comic books. That’s a lot of story.

Josh Mak (01:36:11):
Yeah, it’s a lot of story, but we’ve decided to make things even harder for ourselves because

Leigh Chalker (01:36:19):
As creative people do. Yes.

Josh Mak (01:36:22):
Yeah. We’re simultaneously also doing Anna. So so far what’s happened is we’ve had to pause. We pause scores among Men production because we had to get the first Anna issue Zero out, which was a limited release, we call it issue zero because it was only what, six pages? It was six pages long. So it was just kind of like a teaser. It’s a what’s the come, because we needed something for shows really quickly and we printed 150 copies. We numbered all of them. I think we’ve almost sold all 150 out now. No,

Aaron Mak (01:36:55):
We are down to the final 10.

Josh Mak (01:36:58):

Leigh Chalker (01:36:58):
There you go. Now are those Final 10 going to be available as add-ons in the Kickstarter, or are you going to kick on a new print run with Anna with some extra pages or something? I imagine it’s all going to be tied in there. Possibly.

Josh Mak (01:37:15):
So at the moment, the Anna Comic has only been available at our live shows. We are doing a second printing. The difference with the second printing is that it’s been recolored by our colorist Wilson Go, and so far we’ve only sold them at live shows. We’ve kept it that way. That’s the only way to get hold of one, unless you are a good friend of our, and then we make an exception. But what we’re going to do is at Supernova we’re going for the first time, make the comic available issue zero second printing to people outside of the live shows.

Leigh Chalker (01:37:51):
Yeah, yeah. No, that’s cool, man. That’s cool. That’s really good. So will there be any, well, obviously your first printing’s limited to the 150 you were talking about. So your second print, there’ll be a definite distinction between both of those printings, even other than the indica that’s on the inside of the cover. So people will be able to look at it and go, oh, first printing, that’s so cool. Second printing, because there’s a lot of collectors out there too, man, I really liked the idea though that at the time you were saying you didn’t have any merch, you were into your second gig and you’re thinking like, we’ve got to get something out man to give to people and stuff like that. And I do, man, I love the fact that Ben is just doing this stuff too. Man, look, look, I’ve got a soft spot for Ben, all right? I can’t help it, okay?

Promote Ben until I am blue in the face. All right? He’s just one of my very, very good mates in the Australian comic book scene and community. And I don’t want to be biased at all because I love everyone and every creative out there, but Ben, he a man, so he keeps me on my toes. That bugger, let me tell you. So man, you should be very, very proud of what you got happening. You’re doing multimedia stuff, you got artwork happening, which is a great thing because collectors out there that, and Ben’s artwork is pretty, I would say, Ben. Well, while you hear Ben, let’s talk about that, Ben, because a lot of your artwork, and this is just me talking to you, we are just talking. I know I’ve said to you about Ben, remember that drawing and you did, man. Oh, can I swap a drawing with you?

And you’re like, well, I’d give it to you, but I can’t. And I’m like, why? And you’re like another comic book page on the other side of it. Oh no, I get through it with this. Yeah, so Ben is like myself, I guess Ben, it wouldn’t be wrong to say we’re a little bit appreciative of the spiritual side of the world and nature, et cetera. And we like to watch our panties because we are artists and creators and we like to recycle and not waste paper as such. Let’s not beat around the bush here. We could even be classed as a little bit tight, okay? But okay, it’s how it is. I use pencils until I get down to there. When you get those pencils, Ben, and they don’t sit in that knuckle or your finger there. Oh, I don’t do that. I’ve got something

Ben Sullivan (01:40:53):
To remedy that. It’s one of these where you, I can’t remember what it’s called, but you stick it in and extend the pencil so you can go right down to the nub and keep going.

Leigh Chalker (01:41:02):
Yeah, yeah. Here.

Ben Sullivan (01:41:04):
All these nubs in there.

Leigh Chalker (01:41:06):
Yeah, yeah. I knew you were the man to talk to. Help me out of a bind there, man. I’ve got all these nubs of pencils sitting in a box over there. I don’t want to waste that stuff. So what you’ve got is pages of Ben Sullivan going to be for sale on this Kickstarter, and they don’t have anything else from the sounds of things on the other side of them.

Ben Sullivan (01:41:31):
No, they don’t.

Leigh Chalker (01:41:34):
Ben, why are you just having a little flick down there down there to Oh no, you go Ben.

Ben Sullivan (01:41:53):
Oh, every week I get three pages of a four and cut those in half. So I got six for the week, and if I have to go over, then I got to flip over to the other side. I’m not going to the shop again because I’m lazy and tight.

Leigh Chalker (01:42:08):
I don’t know, man. You were telling me the other day you’ve been going to the gym, you know what I mean? Yeah, that’s what you’re telling me. Yeah, that’s not lazy. These two fellas down here must be rubbing off on you. It’s like these are unbelievable, man. Perfect creativity specimens, like good dudes too, enjoying the night. Now that’s a great thing to be able to get some Ben Sullivan artwork too. So basically all jokes aside, I guess what I’m trying to say to you is it’s like you don’t have to worry about not being able to because he doesn’t make it available very often. So one side of supporting the Kickstarter is to be able to jump on some Ben Sullivan original artwork. And I’m lucky enough to have some of that and it takes pride and place in my house and I had to keep it because it’s like I inked over it, so it’s like, so I’m lucky like that. But you could get lucky too by supporting the Gods Monk Men Kickstarter on GAM dot CMX dot S-T-U-D-O x studio, and you’ve seen a little bit from what the boys have said about the bits and pieces and extras you can get. I mean, there’s creativity flooding out of here. I like the fact that, what’s the age difference between you two? Josh, you were saying Aaron’s a little bit earlier before because you’re really in sync with each other. So is it close or should we make

Aaron Mak (01:43:51):
Lee? Oh, I thought we were going to see if Lee can guess it.

Leigh Chalker (01:43:56):
So 10 years.

Aaron Mak (01:43:57):

Leigh Chalker (01:43:59):
Yeah, right. So yeah, that’s cool. You are very in sync with how you’re working and that and I can see how, what’s that, Aaron?

Aaron Mak (01:44:09):
I’m 10 and he’s 20.

Leigh Chalker (01:44:11):
Fair dinkum man.

Aaron Mak (01:44:14):

Leigh Chalker (01:44:15):
God. You’ve developed well for a 10-year-old. I mean, have a look at you, man. I must

Aaron Mak (01:44:20):
Be the same size as a 10-year-old.

Leigh Chalker (01:44:23):
Oh, unbelievable mate. I’m sure I’ve seen a photo of you drinking. Be Your Man God, they breed ’em tough in the Mack Brothers family. It’s like 10 years old out drinking beer and doing things out in the nightclubs man, partying on with your brother in his band and stuff like that. Wowses, man, that’s some tough stuff going on there now because Ben’s busy as, and I’m glad he’s pumping and stuff. Aussie Bo, this is the first Kickstarter I’m going to go for the ultra best most expensive tier. Alright, while we’re talking about that, why don’t we let Bo, no, what is the most expensive Tac Brothers? Because I reckon in Townsville I will hear Beau moan from the now that he’s promised because let’s go, what is it? Let’s have it. Where do we go?

Aaron Mak (01:45:25):
So technically the most expensive tier possible you could get is if you grab one of the tiers, which is Ben Sullivan’s original art, which also includes a print copy of God’s among Man. And that goes for 200 bucks I think for Bens that we really, you couldn’t get a better deal than that. And if you added on a hardcover and a full set of collectors cards, I don’t even think that’s 300 bucks. So I don’t see why you wouldn’t.

Leigh Chalker (01:46:03):
We’re making a new thousand. See there are the magic happening here, man, Bo. It’s called Man Livestream. You’ve signed up for that. You can’t take it away now

Aaron Mak (01:46:18):
We a thousand bucks. We’ll come to your house, cook you a meal and I’ll give you a

Leigh Chalker (01:46:21):
Pass up. There you go. Yeah,

Aaron Mak (01:46:23):
But I’ve already cooked football.

Leigh Chalker (01:46:30):
I reckon that’s brilliant. I think that’s a really good deal, to be honest with you, for some Ben Sullivan stuff and some God amongst Men stuff, and that’s a good tier. You might have to fight Bow for the thousand dollars tier. That might be a bow only tier, but that might not be the only tier be sheds that day when he finds out. That’s the only thing that he can buy. But hopefully that’s caught on a video by Claudia and it’s posted all over Instagram and that would be funny to look at. So Bow, squish, squish, hoping to see some love soon, man. But no, that’s really cool man. And for anyone that doesn’t know Omni Bow, I’ve got a meal for free. You’re paying for it next week, man.

Anyone watching doesn’t know Omni Bow, it’s Bo who is from Aussie verse, which is obviously, as we said earlier today, the other streaming site that shows chinwag. So thank you always for Omni Bow and the cruise support of Chinwag and Comm X are greatly appreciated, allows us to have these great moments. Now one thing that I sort of guess I want to get back to as well because that we haven’t touched on now this for all of you because we’re all Comex Studio people. Ben does other things for other people, but that’s okay. You know what I mean? But a lot of books such as this, my Battle for Bustle, varying other people’s books are Comex studio related. Now, COMEX Studio supports like creatives all over Australia that have got stories to tell. So it’s very exciting that the Gods amongst men, trio and their colorist who I would love to meet and shout out to because coloring, lettering, editing all of these things, graphic design, there’s so much, so many important elements that go into the creativity of a comic book that people sometimes forget about. So I try very hard to make people aware that there’s so much more as well that goes into it. It’s not just the idea and the writing and the artwork and stuff because there’s a lot of other element that go into it. So never forget all the creatives that participate in these things, but your time.

I guess what I want to get to is the first person I met when I got my box of Battle for Bustle issue one many years ago was Ciz. He reached out to me and he go, Hey, how you going? I’m Shane and Shane’s comics is actually an ad in the back page of Battle for Bustle issue one that I did. And at the time it was just Comics Network and it was just a website designed to allow people to know where comic book shops were. So we’ve all started at places and Comex has now gotten to this, it’s now gotten to live streams, it’s gotten to studios, it’s gotten to a hard work and pair because when I talk about a pair, I don’t just want to talk about Shane here, I also want to talk about Kerry, his partner as well, and the spirit that they add to the community and the support.

There’s a lot of effort and work that goes into this stuff and I know that they’re very, very excited and always excited to see people like the Mack Brothers coming through with their first full comic book, getting Kickstarters off and running, bringing people like Ben together and working. And we’re all in a community. And I’m very passionate about the comic book community because I think sometimes that there’s a great deal of, how shall I say, weird competitive stuff going on between creatives and I don’t get it. You should only be competitive with yourself and you should learn from each other and you should enjoy each other in the community and you should build amongst spirit and supporting your family and your people that you like. And hey, you might get some people you don’t like, but you know what? You get that everywhere in life, you know what I mean?

You just suck it up, deal with it, and it’s just still what it is, just you navigate the parts of life. But what I want to get to you guys about is with Comex, the community, how you felt being welcomed and stuff. And Ben, yourself as well, man, because I don’t think I’ve ever asked you what are you feeling about specifically right now, the Mack Brothers, your first time doing a Kickstarter, being part of Comex and Ben, when these gentlemen have answered coming to you, I want to know how you feel about the Australian comic book community and the strength of it and how you are feeling about what’s going on. So I’ll start with Josh and Aaron first come X how you found the whole feel of the community and the support and stuff. Gentlemen,

Aaron Mak (01:51:55):
Can I start off on this one? Sure, yeah. One thing that was sort of, and I kind of wanted to mention this, I’m not sure if I got to mention this in the past, but a real special shout out to Ciz and even before, another special person who actually dropped a comment was Gary Chana. These were two people that when we were first forming this comic idea and we were going like we’re working with such sort of intense subject matter and we were getting sort of rejections left and center these, Gary was somebody who actually sat down and spoke to us and gave us that support and advice. And since when we spoke to him about it, he welcomed us in with open arms and he was the first and possibly the only. And that to me was such an amazing thing to be sort of received in with open arms. I don’t really care about what you are writing about. If you are passionate about it and you want to make something good, obviously there’s some rules like no NSFW, but otherwise NSF W is fine, but no other stuff. But no other than that he was super welcoming. And then everybody else in the community helps out in the comics group. Everyone’s generally very willing to talk and to give advice and to help out with things. So it’s nice to be where we are now, I think especially from being really alone before,

Yes, different. Everybody’s different.

Leigh Chalker (01:53:50):
Yeah, no, that’s really nice to see, man. So you felt like just with you saying there, you felt like you’re out there on your own, weren’t quite sure, but having a community of like-minded people has made you feel good and supported and stuff, which it’s a beautiful thing to hear, man.

Aaron Mak (01:54:09):
It’s nice when somebody actually takes a chance on you and so we hope to show that we’re worth that.

Leigh Chalker (01:54:18):
Yeah, yeah. Oh man.

Josh Mak (01:54:23):
I’m very grateful to everybody we’ve been in contact with so far. Honestly, we only had one or two people that when we first started didn’t get what we were doing. And then we met Ben and we reached out, we met Gary and Sis and you guys and other people in the community like Paul and Aru and

Aaron Mak (01:54:52):

Josh Mak (01:54:52):
Sharif. Yeah, I’m

Aaron Mak (01:54:57):

Josh Mak (01:55:02):
Used to being the odd kid with the weird ideas and the other stuff that I’ve done. It’s rare that wax accepted and embraced the way that the vast majority of the community has for us and that’s something I’m very thankful for.

Leigh Chalker (01:55:19):
Yeah, that’s lovely man. That’s awesome to hear. I’m glad you’ve found it welcoming, mate. That’s like the best thing to have someone say. I enjoy meeting people as well, man, and enjoy the community as well. It’s given me an awful lot too. And hopefully you guys continue to get heaps of involvement and enjoyment out of it as well and all your success that comes. Ben mate, you’re a little bit more of a veteran than the Mack brothers. So how are you feeling about the Australian comic book community and scene at the moment? Man, never. I ask you this because you’re never shy of work and lots of people, you’re always working with different people and that, how are you feeling? Is it feeling positive for you at the moment?

Ben Sullivan (01:56:12):
There’s a few linchpins like Shane that bring all these people together. I dunno what would be without, sounds like a line, but I dunno what we’d be doing without these kind of linchpins that pull us all together. But I’ll be meeting Shane when he comes down to Melbourne too, which I’m really looking forward to because all I see is the top half the head side. See what?

Leigh Chalker (01:56:49):
See yeah, if he’s got legs or if he’s one of those dar type dudes like cruises around the little torso on wheels, man. Yeah, I heard he

Ben Sullivan (01:57:00):

Leigh Chalker (01:57:01):
Yeah. Or if he actually wears thongs, like he’s always depicted as wearing or he could bust out a pair of six, what are they, 48 hole doc, Martins man, the bottom round. That’s Cube. That’s an excellent idea too.

Ben Sullivan (01:57:26):
I’ll give this the Shane when it comes down to Melbourne. Yeah,

Leigh Chalker (01:57:30):
Yeah. That is

Ben Sullivan (01:57:33):
People like Shane, they’re a linchpin for all of us that I think keep us all together and keep us talking and keep the creativity moving between us and also shows like this as well. Keeps us all together, I’ll say.

Leigh Chalker (01:57:53):
Yeah, well I mean that’s the beauty of it, isn’t it? You’re always stronger together, mate. So when you can do plenty of learning and it’s always good when I hear stories about my mate Gary Chana, who’s helping you guys out, because he certainly helped me out when I was, I guess a little bit a couple of years ago and he’s been, there’s lots of things that just work in the community man. You know what I mean? That are great. And don’t forget though too, because I mean Comex is not just solely Comex, I’ve said it before. The Comex shop is available for you don’t just have to be a comic studio produced comic book to be sold in the comic shop either. Alright? So you can be anyone at all a creative and if you want an outlet for your comic book to be sold, just reach out to Siz Comex and the emails and that sort of stuff and just ask him, doesn’t hurt to ask a question, Shane at comex net au, reach out to Shane and have a yarn. Let him know you’ve got a comic book, you’d like to get it into an online shop.

Just there’s starts. It doesn’t almost have to be done on your own. It used to be when I guess Ben and I were younger, you know what I mean, stuck in Townsville, didn’t know anything, it was all snail mail back then, mate. You know what I mean? Stick it on a pigeon and hope it got back to you. And I dunno if Ben’s that old, but I probably just admitted that I am. So Ben, you look much better than I do. So you probably were around for Dollar,

We’ll say. Yeah, there you go. Comax Shop slash stock with us. Check that out. It’s all in the websites and all that. And that’s for all your info. I’ll give you all the details of everything that you need and if it piques your interest. So look, I’m going to start winding down the show this evening. I’m feeling really good about where we’ve gone tonight with everything. How are you feeling Mack Brothers? You’re feeling like your chin wagon’s gone pretty good. You’re happy with everything this evening? Yeah, I had a great time. Well whacked. Yeah, yeah, ripper. Now I’m much older than you Aaron, so I’m going, if I heard well whacked that it means someone was dead by an Italian mafia man from my age. But I’m going to go with hopefully that’s good. So thank you, thank you. If it is meant to be that, and if it’s the other one, you are not getting my address, email address, business card or anything to do with me again, we’ll be ending our relationship at the end of the show. But all in jokes, don’t be silly. So my mate, Ben, mate, have you enjoyed your record number Third?

Ben Sullivan (02:01:03):
Yeah, it’s too, isn’t it? That’s amazing.

Leigh Chalker (02:01:06):
It is, mate. Good

Ben Sullivan (02:01:08):
Lee, tonight you ask questions that hit nails on the right heads and went into the right places or you do this Well, I just got to say that Lee, I watch every show and yeah, you do the right, right questions you really probe well. I’ll say

Leigh Chalker (02:01:31):

Ben Sullivan (02:01:32):
Word, sorry.

Leigh Chalker (02:01:33):
Yeah, yeah, no, we’ll go with Probe. I can live with Probe in the right way. Yeah, in the right way. As long as it’s not like an alien abduction probe or something like that. I might have to write certainly written email to the mothership or something about that. But how we’ve discussed it, how you’ve articulated it, yes, thank you. I’m very grateful for those kind words. I do like Chinwag. The one thing that you can guarantee is that Chinwag will always be made with love. I do enjoy meeting new people, old friends and people that just enjoy comic books and pushing on the medium in the right direction. It’s all about, for me, positivity, it’s all about creativity, man. Save my life could save yours, could help you out of some pretty sticky situations sometimes just having those moments, whether it’s playing music or fencing or cooking or gardening, any of those things.

Get in touch with yourself, feel whole, feel self full, let all that negativity out and you’ll start feeling better about yourself. The world will make a little bit more sense hopefully when you get a little bit of time to yourself. I’ve found that’s worked for me. Alright, so gentlemen, as I wind down the show, Ben Sullivan, you are a champion. Lovely to see you again. We’ll be talking to you soon about things. The Max Brothers, I have met Aaron before and enjoyed it immensely. Josh, my first time meeting you mate, I wish the pair of you and Ben, every success with God amongst men at TomX Studio, gm, XTU, dio, go to that site on the Kickstarter site, press notify it launches next week, the next comic book in the comic studio, Marr Fleet. Craziness that it is the comic studio the first time for these guys on their own Kickstarter, go and support ’em.

You can tell from tonight they’re creative. They’ve got Ben with them. Go and support Ben, support anyone drawing comic books. There’s a whole heap of places you can go. You got Ry Comics, you’ve got Owner Indie, which is a comic place that you can pick up other comics. You’ve got Aus Comic, you’ve got Cyclone Comic, you’ve got, man, you name it, you get on Google. Google is your friend. Have a look at Australian comic books. There’s independent comic books, there’s people publishing comic books everywhere, all over Australia, every five on Coast Coast, every word that I can’t possibly speak is covered by someone doing a comic book. And how you’ll find them is on Comic Studio because like Aica local shops and you find people and they all come and they vibe and they all meet out and they reach out and they touch and they get jiggy with it.

And in a creative sense, not some sort of weirdly anyway pickle. So on that note, chinwag, I’m going to have two weeks off for the next couple of Tuesdays. Shane’s got some big things to do with Melbourne meeting the boys and going down to Melbourne. He’s got some comic books to publish. He’s got other shows that he’s got to bring ahead. I’m just going to take two weeks off because I need to tend to my garden. And that’s something that I like to do for my mental health is just take a little bit of time. And I also am just about to finish all my work on the next couple of issues of the next series of Battle for Bustle. So I want to donate as much time as I can to that so I can bring out my comic book series in the next month or two.

So yeah, comics is all about mental health. Look after yourself. If you haven’t spoken to someone in your family, your brothers, your sisters, your family, your friends, anyone out there that you just think, oh, I should really ring out and talk to ’em. Reach out, say good day. Do it because it may. Put a smile on their face. May put a smile on your face. Mental health is everything. Keep people safe. Look after your people. Now also remember that I have something to quote you other than community is unity. This evening I’ve discovered that I’m reading a lot of things of late and I like to leave these things with just food for thought. So as I leave you with community is Unity. And see you on April the 16th for Louie Joyce in the house. I’m going to leave you with this. Thoughts come and go. Feelings come and go. Find out what it is that remains. And that was by Romana Maharishi. All right, be good. See you April 16th. Thank you to the God amongst Men creative team. See you later. Thanks everyone. See you guys. Thank you.

Voice Over (02:06:52):
This show is sponsored by the Comex Shop. Check out for all things Comex and find out what Comex is all about. We hope you enjoyed the show.


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