Cold Heat #1Cold Heat #1
by Ben Jones and Frank Santoro
(and lettered by Aaron Cometbus!)
PictureBox

Cold
                  Heat #1 - interior pageAs crazy as it may sound, this is the first issue of a twelve-issue comic book maxi-series written and drawn by art comics favorites, Ben "Paper Rad" Jones and Frank "Storeyville" Santoro.  Mightily manifesting the poignant praxis of pioneering publisher, Picturebox, Cold Heat is not necessarily stoned, but beautiful -- a hypnotically tranced-out, maximum-volume take on the action/adventure genre that stays out all night and doesn't come home until the party's over and it's time to crash.  From it's super-slick full color covers, to its orange-juice-orange inside covers and through its 24-page interior printed entirely in magenta and sky blue, this is a comic book that stands out in a crowd, and about which we are entirely comfortable in saying, "there's nothing else remotely like it on the market."  Feeling adventurous?  Try this.

24 pages, 2-color

retail price - $5.00
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price - sold out!


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Cold
            Heat 2Cold Heat #2
by Ben Jones and Frank Santoro
 Picking up where the first issue left off, Cold Heat #2 revs it up a few notches and takes us on a whirlwind ride through the dis-united states of the disturbed American psyche.  Series artist, Frank Santoro once again refuses to play it safe.  This time around he pulls out all the stops and takes the chances that most other artists wouldn't take even if they could.  Leaping into the artistic no man's land between the well established borders of pre-existent genres, Santoro combines the propulsive narratives of mainstream American heroic adventure comics, the exaggerated expressiveness of Japanese manga, and the naivete of self-published autobiographical comics with his own experimental ideas to create a totally unique comics cocktail that will knock you for a loop (You don't have to take our word for it:  Check out this double-page spread).  Cold Heat takes the outside in and then brings the inside out -- demonstrating how our internalization of international affairs creates monsters in our minds that are every bit as dangerous as anything we'll meet on the street -- and by so doing helps us see our place in and find our way through the mess of our world. 
retail price - $5.00  copacetic price - $4.00

24 pages, 2-color

retail price - $5.00
copacetic price - $4.00
purchase here


Cold Heat 3
Cold Heat #3
by BJ and Frank Santoro
The plot thickens, the mystery deepens, the pace is picked up and no holds are barred in this, the third issue of the most innovative comic book series in America.  While other comic books tout their "new" plot twists and "new" characters and "new" concepts, the comics they produce are, formally, all the same, maintaining the tried and tired industry status quo.  Cold Heat is authentically different.  Creators, BJ and Santoro understand the conventions under girding the standard comic book format and deftly undercut them, subverting the implicit conservatism of these conventions by exogamously marrying  them to an entirely different, diverse and far ranging array of techniques, tropes and teleologies.  Fauvism, cubism, expressionism and pop art rub shoulders with an allusive montage of narrative codes including action/adventure, detective, horror, romance and more.  And that's just what's going on beneath the surface.  What you see, starting with the startlingly disorienting and surpassingly original cover image, is a powerful story indicting the wrongs of today that is powered by some of the most visionary artwork around.  Delicate yet defiant and densely packed, Cold Heat #3 is a one of a kind comic book.

24 pages, 2-color

retail price - $5.00
copacetic
price - $4.00

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Cold Heat 4Cold Heat #4
by BJ and Frank Santoro
How?!  Cold Heat #4 is already in stock, and it's a doozy.  Disparate and heretofore disconnected aspects of the storyline are joined together as some puzzling pieces of the plot are put into place. 
We don't want to give too much away here, but suffice it to say that some things have turned out -- surprise! -- not to be what they seemed.  Lovers of cosmic mysteries and mighty metaphors will find plenty of food for thought this time around, and thrill seekers should find what they're looking for as the intensity is ramped up a notch or two.  Santoro's art really shines this issue as he continues to bring a world beat of styles and perspectives to the mix while at the same time turning in some of his most polished art to date.   To those of you who have been watching on the sidelines, uneasy about the ellipticality of Cold Heat's narrative, wondering what it's all about and where it's been leading, we say:  Now's your chance -- this is the one you've been waiting for.  This is the issue that puts the story into focus and brings the series up to speed. 
retail price - $5.00
  copacetic price - $4.00

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Cold Heat 5/6Cold Heat 5/6

by Frank Santoro and Ben Jones
It's been well over a year since the last issue of Cold Heat appeared, but we're here to tell you that this is one comic book that was worth the wait!!  It's a 48 page double issue printed in the trademarked Cold Heat two-color process employing magenta and blue.  It's comics at their most adventurous and risk-taking, produced by creators who have the experience, skill and training to get to the other side, and, crucially, to take the reader there along with them -- but you'll have to pay close attention and hold on tight as it's quite a trip!  A key to understanding this work is that its true subject is the relationship between the perception of reality and the representation of reality, between the signifier and the signified; how the representation of reality creates a feedback loop which transforms reality in the process.  And there is a special focus on the relationship between subjectivity and perception, particularly on how emotional and chemically altered states of mind alter the perception of events which then alters their representation and is capable of altering their actual outcome as well.  This is a task to which comics are ideally suited and which Frank Santoro has been in the vanguard of exploring.  With this issue he has pushed the furthest yet into this unmapped and only dimly comprehended artistic territory.   Yes, this is one pricey comic book, but the economics of today have forced the publisher into a corner and this is being produced in an extremely small quantity for the True Believers.

retail price - $20.00  
copacetic price  - sold out!



Cold Heat 7/8
                      santoro Cold Heat 7/8
by Frank Santoro and BJ
Cold Heat closes in for the kill with another double issue.  This one brings the series one (double) issue away from completion.  After the massive action blow-out of #5/6, this time around we have more of a culture jam as the saga crosses international boundaries when Castle & Co. head to the southern hemisphere, accompanied by the BBC, and the modern condition of living in the global village is given the Cold Heat treatment along the way.  Land lines and laptops, mobile phones and desktops, the internet and intensive care units, wifi and the web, credit cards and music festivals, airports and hotel rooms, Starbucks and taxi cabs,  bright beaches and dark alleys all seamlessly connect to form the all-encompassing phenomenological envelope that passes for reality in the 21st century.  As always, series artist, Frank Santoro takes chances starting, most obviously this time around, with the front cover, which invokes Ellsworth Kelly and Ad Reinhardt while highlighting the "thingness" of a comic book as he pushes and pokes at the formal elements that make up the current corpus of comics in his ongoing challenge to the received wisdom that constitutes contemporary comics orthodoxy.  castleThe images we've selected to illustrate this listing focus on one of Santoro's greatest strengths that of exploring the many avenues open to graphically rendering interior subjective states of mind beyond mere mastery of facial expression.  The many faces of Castle on display in the pages of Cold Heat embody of the struggle to forge new tools to place in the comics craft toolbox, making each issue of the series double as a workshop and none moreso than this one.  There's an aspect to the experience of reading Cold Heat that feels like being taken behind the scenes to see how it's done while the action never stops happening all around. It's like bringing you right there on the set while they're filming yet still managing to maintain the manufactured illusion of the movie.   This issue has a terrifyingly low print run of 100 copies, so delay purchase at your own risk.  BUY HERE!
retail price - $20.00   copacetic price - $18.88


Cold Heat mini poster



We now have in stock a very limited quantity of a signed and numbered Cold Heat print by Frank Santoro.  This print is standard comic book size -- 7" x 10" -- so it will fit right in with the Cold Heat comics if you  would like to store it away as part of your collection, but we feel confident that you'll be putting this one on your wall.  This is the image here on the right =>; you should know, however, that the colors -- at least on our copies -- are far more vibrant when viewed in person. THIS ITEM IS NOW OUT OF PRINT.  SORRY! 

copacetic price - sold out

 




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Cold Heat Special - The Chunky GnarsCold Heat Special #1
by Frank Santoro & John Vermilyea
Cold Heat Secial #2 - The Chunky Gnars: A Chocolate Gun Tribute
by Chris Cornwell
Upon learning that the Cold Heat comic book seriers was going to be transformed into a stand-alone graphic novel to be released in late 2008, and as a result faced with the potential for a year long drought for Cold Heat fans after their being acculturated to a regular release schedule, CH creators BJ and Frank Santoro have commisioned several ancilliary Cold Heat books to tide readers over while they themselves toil away on the core text.  The first two of these have now been released, and premiered at SPX.  Each is 16 pages in length.  Chunky Gnars is digest issue with cardstock cover while the Special is an 11" x 14" newspaper.  Both focus on the music-as-spiritual-salvation aspect of the Cold Heat narrative, and do so with much graphic aplomb, but each has a very distinct approach to the task, with Vermilyea taking advantage of the grand page sizes to present an action packed adventure that doubles as a sweeping simile, while Cornwell's digest is densely packed with metaphor, analogue and allegory all of which are related to each other and, tangentially at least, to the Cold Heat narrative thus far.  Even if you're not a follwer of the Cold Heat series, you should consider checking these out as each can and does stand on its own merits, as well as providing a window onto one of the most innovative comics works currently being produced.
copacetic price - $3.00@


Cold Heat Special #3Cold Heat Special #3
By Frank Santoro & Dash Shaw
While Santoro burns the midnight oil finishing up the Cold Heat graphic novel, he knows Cold Heat fans are jonesing, and so has commisioned an ongoing series of specials.  These specials are all limited editions with very low print runs that won't be reprinted in the graphic novel, so don't miss out!  CHS #3 is a collaboration with up and coming comics experimentalist, Dash Shaw (see the latest issue of MOME) that is built around a combination of early Italian renaissance imagery and contemporary urban cityscape.  This time out we have a saddle-stapled 16-page horizontally formatted comic book with a wraparound two-color cover that blurs the line between waking and sleeping, dream and reality, drugged and straight, and yesterday and today, as well as between classical fine art and contemporary popular art.  Santoro & Shaw's cover image has been hand silk-screened by Pittsburgh's master poster maker, Budai!  Limited to 100 copies.
copacetic price - sold out

Cold Heat Special 4



Cold Heat Special #4

by Frank Santoro & Jim Rugg
This time around we have a16-page tabloid newspaper comic book filled with further far out fables featuring Cassandra -- aka Castle -- cavorting with chaos.  Santoro and Rugg employ the large (22" x 17", when opened) "canvas" of the tabloid format to excellent effect, creating a feast for the eyes with finely rendered dramatic imagery that ranges from psychedlicized fast food bathroom interiors to landscapes of the rolling hills of (what appears to be) western PA, all in the service of a tale of temporal displacement that demonstrates that the past is still here, all around us, and that travelling through time is a simple matter of opening a door or two.  There may be some side effects, however...
retail price - $3.00  copacetic price - $2.50





Cold Heat Special 5Cold Heat Special #5
by Frank Santoro & Ryan Cecil Smith
A rare treat, this is a hand made edition, limited to a mere 100 copies, w/ hand silk-screened (on a nice heavy stock) two-color front and back covers that comes complete with endpapers, no less.  As for the contents, this time out we witness a brief interlude in the life of Castle wherein she and her now diseased father are out in the woods, hungry and looking for food.  Aesthetically speaking, this adventure takes place roughly half way between Storeyville and Black Hole on the comics spectrum.  As with the first four Cold Heat Specials, this will NOT be collected with the forthcoming graphic novel.
copacetic price - sold out


Cold Heat Special 6 Cold Heat Special #6
by Chris Cornwell
published by PictureBox
Yes, Cold Heat Special 8 and 9 have come (and, in the case of number 8, gone as well) but without any sign of numbers 6 and 7... until now!  Over a year in the making, Cold Heat Special Number Six is now in stock and it's a one-of-a-kind, hand-crafted work of art.  Wrapped in fabulous front and back cover silkscreens complete with inside front and back cover silk-screened "endpapers," which are overlaid with hand tipped full color "plates" (ink jet prints) this magazine-size special is an aesthetic treat and feast for the eyes, yes, but most of all it is an experience for the mind.  Extending and vastly expanding on the themes he introduced in his first Cold Heat Special (number two), Cornwell has here seamlessly merged his own artistic concerns with those of Cold Heat creators BJ and Santoro to forge a fantastic journey to the center of the mind that intimates at the nature of eternal recurrence and the simultaneity of historicity in a universe that has banished linear time and made way for cosmic consciousness.  Working firmly in the Cold Heat tradition of
turning readers on to DIY culture and the untested possibilities of a new life living off the grid and on the fringes, and smartly leveraging the series' signs and symbols for maximum psychic impact, this comic book also reveals that the corridors of power extend in multiple directions through time and space, penetrating numerous dimensional barriers along the way, and that the control of the power that thusly flows is directed by some unusual players engaged in some surprising relationships.  Limited to 100 hand numbered copies. Recommended!  BUY HERE
retail price - $12.00  copacetic price - $12.00



Cold Heat Special 8Cold Heat Special #8
by Frank Santoro & Lane Milburn
No, we didn't make a mistake:  Cold Heat Special #8, another SPX 2008 highlight, is already here, despite the fact that #6 & #7 have yet to see print.  That's the world of Cold Heat:  time is non-linear here; temporal warps, shifts and bounces are the norm, so hold on tight.  This time around we have an amazing magazine size (8 1/2" x 11") special with a double silk-screen wrap printed in three colors on heavy duty stock by Pittsburgh's own ace printer, Budai.  Castle travels through a dream-vision to a world of mythological archetypes that sheds an insightful light on our own.  Santoro has found another fine collaborator in Milburn, as their respective strengths forge to create a swirling sense of the porous and shifting border between interior psychological states and the sensory experience of external reality. This special is a special value, so don't delay:  these won't be around long as the print run has been limited to a mere 100 copies.
copacetic price - sold out

Learn more about Cold Heat at the Official Cold Heat Comics Website


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prices and availability current as of 20 January 2011