Octobriana 1976 - CoverWhat's the first thing you reach for during a power-cut? I mean, do you search for a flashlight? Do you rummage for a set of candles and a box of matches? Or do you pick up and read an illuminating comic book about a group of rebels living in Russia? Well, if I was you, I’d pick the comic book option, but only because of the conversation I had with my friend Jim, Jim Rugg, who's created the first blacklight comic book. Here, check this out...

Jim Rugg on Amazon

1) What are your own origins, Jim?   I grew up in a really rural area where there wasn't much for me to do. So to occupy my time, I started to take up drawing and I haven’t stopped since. Well, apart from when I’m reading my comic books, which I began collecting around the age of ten because I quickly fell in love with the medium.

2) What inspired you to create, ‘Octobriana’?   Octobriana 1976’ is the world's first blacklight comic book and it features characters based on the 1971 novel, ‘Octobriana and the Russian Underground’, which is about a group of activists from the USSR who make illegal, underground comic books in order to fight Soviet oppression! Or in other words...

I’m also inspired by creativity and I enjoy making things whenever I can. So when I made a blacklight print and realized that it would look really cool as a 70s underground comic book, I quickly talked to a printer and the rest is now history. 

Octobriana 1976 - Image
3) In your own words, how would you describe this story?   
The story begins when the PPP (Progressive Political Pornography party) discovers that Robot Stalin has a new doomsday bomb that he plans to test. But as it could destroy the entire world, it’s up to Octobriana (a sexy Russian superhero) to stop him before it's too late. Stop him by fighting against a series of opponents that include, people living inside a Siberian labor camp, helicopter gunships, and monster scientists. There's also a motorcycle chase sequence and an orgy featured in this story too, so there’s quite a bit of humor and action going on, along with the brightest, eyeball-scorching colors you've ever seen in a comic book.

4) If you could get a celebrity – either living or dead – to promote your wares, who would you choose, and why would you want to choose this particular person?   I’d have to say Jesus because I hear he has a lot of followers.

5) What have you learned about yourself through this endeavor?   That I love making comics!

Octobriana 1976 - Stalin
6) During your time in this field, what is the one thing that has kept you in good stead?   
Well, I keep trying new processes and ideas because it has helped me learn and understand new technologies (some of which are very vital to the printing of this book). In fact, trying new things has also helped me acquire an audience who've followed my work and shared it with their friends.  In many ways, I think people like to be surprised and I think my comics are often different and surprising.

7) If ‘Octobriana’ had a motto, what would it be?   'Revolution forever, bitch'.

And on that note, I'd like to thank Jim for telling us about his new comic book, 'Octobriana 1976', before encouraging you to check out his Instagram, Twitter, Kickstarter, and YouTube pages.


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