First Comics News: How did you first develop an interest in comic books?
Josh Nealis: Like most people, I assume, I was into comics as a kid. Huge fan of the 90s animated shows. (X-men, Spider-man, BTAS, and others) In 6th grade, I created Stingray and Snapdragon, the main hero and villain in my books, for a writing contest. I didn’t win and I think only got a C on the project. So, when I decided I wanted to make a few comics, that’s where I started. It just made sense to start with my characters that I had already spent months drawing and writing as a kid.
1st: Why did you form Cutthroat Comics?
Josh: I knew I had zero shot getting published by anyone else. I have no experience as a writer, outside of book reports and a movie review site that I ran before this. Basically, I researched everything I could and figured that starting my own company would allow me to do things how I saw fit. It’s really all parts of my personality coming together. My creative side writing the books and comics. Then my drive and motivation on the business side.
1st: Can you tell us why your comics stand out from others?
Josh: Each of my characters has a piece of me in them. Ray (Stingray) is rebellious and can be crass, but he’s just trying to do what’s right. Pedoman is extremely silly. Ginger Avenger is smart and motivated. I’m sure there are aspects of my books that are like a lot of other books, but they are from me. My ideas are wild and are a definite twist on things a reader may or may have not seen before. Name another character that can see silent farts and stops a fight to make sure everyone knows who broke wind.
1st: What is “Pedoman and Kid Friendly” about?
Josh: This book is very Family Guy mixed with Mel Brooks. It pokes fun at everything and references all kinds of 90s and 80s pop culture. Pedoman was kidnapped and injected with the DNA of the best 80s teen pop stars in an attempt to make the ultimate teen star. It obviously failed and years later he becomes the Immortal Pedoman, Defender of Brothel City.
1st: What does Ralph Macchio have to do with the comic book “Pedoman and Kid Friendly”?
Josh: Much like Shazam, Pedoman’s normal identity has to say a codeword to change. Because it’s mixed into his DNA, his codeword is to say “Ralph Macchio!”
1st: In “Ginger Avenger” what is the Cave of Destiny?
Josh: Donny is an archaeologist and he’s been studying and searching his entire adult life trying to be the person that finally finds the elusive Cave of Destiny. The magic cave, located in Ireland, chooses someone to become the next in a long line of Ginger Avengers.
1st: Who is Donny and why does he become the Ginger Avenger?
Josh: Guess I kinda answered that in the last question, but I can add this. If you read through all of our comics, you’ll notice some familiar faces.
1st: What is the basic story outline of Stingray?
Josh: After the sudden passing of his wife, Ray is kidnapped by aliens and forced into slavery. After months he’s rescued by Marc, a green alien rebel leader who vows to get him back to Earth. Chaos ensues.
1st: In “Stingray” what is a Ceti?
Josh: The Ceti are a race of aliens hailing from Tau Ceti E, which is a real planet that could in fact host life. It turns out they’ve made a deal with our government to allow them to take slaves when needed in exchange for not destroying the planet.
1st: Which of your comics if any have a special meaning to you above the others?
Josh: I love all of my books, but Ginger Avenger 2 is definitely special. It’s the first appearance of “Nanny.” She’s based on my real-life Grandmother who passed away last year (2019). Buddy the squirrel is also based on a real squirrel that my late grandfather used to feed.
1st: What is coming out next from Cutthroat Comics?
Josh: Right now we’re working on Pedoman and Kid Friendly #3. We also have a fable style anthology coming out titled, Down the Hatch. This book will be drawn by several industry legends who have worked for Marvel, DC, Image, and literally every other notable comics company.
1st: How did your upbringing contribute to you getting into creating comics?
Josh: Honestly, I have no idea. My grandmother used to write poetry, but other than that, no one in my family does this kind of thing. I’m an enigma. A handsome one.
1st: What does your son think of your comic books?
Josh: He just turned five, so he doesn’t fully understand. But, recently he’s been watching me poorly draw the storyboards and he loves asking me what they’re doing and saying. The goal is to build something for him to take over and take part in when he’s old enough. If he so chooses that is.
1st: What would you like to say to your supporters?
Josh: Thank you. Any support is extremely appreciated. I’ve met some really cool people from doing this and it’s just really great when I get positive feedback from them. I love making people laugh, always have. I hope I can keep making things that are funny and thought-provoking. I can’t do that without support. Every purchase, like, share, comment, or follow helps tremendously.