Billy Dogma by Dean Haspiel
Billy Dogma - 'Sex Planet'.

Dean Haspiel is an American comic book artist, known for his semi-autobiographical work in the alternative comic scene, and for his collaborations with writer Harvey Pekar. He is the creator of 'Keyhole' (1995-1998), from which his signature character Billy Dogma originated. 

Early life and career
He was born in 1967 in New York City, where he graduated from theThe High School of Music & Art/Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School in 1985. He made his first steps in the comic book industry as an assistant of Howard Chaykin on 'American Flagg!', Bill Sienkiewicz on 'New Mutants' and 'Elektra: Assassin', and Walter Simonson on 'Thor' in the mid-1980s. He later attended the State University of New York at Purchase, where he majored in illustration and film. He made his professional debut during his study years, co-creating 'The Verdict' with Martin Powell for Eternity Comics in 1987.

Billy Dogma
With Josh Neufeld, he developed the black-and-white alternative comic book 'Keyhole', which they presented as a two-man anthology. The initial run was as four mini-comics in 1995, after which six full-sized issues were published by Millennium Publications and then Top Shelf Productions from 1996 to 1998. It was in 'Keyhole' that Haspiel created his 'Billy Dogma' character, as well as the one-page feature 'Travel Tips' and autobiographical stories. The artists also made the collaborative feature 'Lionel's Lament'. 'Keyhole' was inspired by Harvey Pekar's 'American Splendor' and 'Love and Rockets' by Los Bros Hernandez, and received much critical acclaim.

Opposable Thumbs by Dean Haspiel
'Opposable Thumbs'.

Haspiel's 'Billy Dogma' character has returned in several later works, such as 'Billy Dogma' (3 issues at Millennium Publications, 1997), 'Daydream Lullabies: A Billy Dogma Experience', (Top Shelf, 1999), 'Boy in My Pocket: The Billy Dogma Experience' (Top Shelf, 2000), and 'Brawl', a 3-issue miniseries with Michel Fiffe (Image Comics, 2007). The author was nominated for an Eisner for his groundbreaking semi-auto-bio comic 'Opposable Thumbs' (Alternative Comics, 2001), about a born-and-bred New Yorker and the trials and tribulations of living in the big bad city. He was also nominated for an Ignatz for 'Aim to Dazzle' (Alternative Comics, 2004), another story featuring Billy Dogma.

KeyholeAmerican Splendor

SLC Punk
In 1998 James Merendino directed the punk movie 'SLC Punk!' (1998), which later developed a cult following. Haspiel adapted the story into a comic book, 'SLC Punk!', published by Southampton Press. In a 20 June 2013 interview conducted by Dan Greenfield for New York Post, Haspiel said that while he "dug the film" he considered the comic book to be an old shame. 

American Splendor
Haspiel has worked regularly with Harvey Pekar on the autobiographical 'American Splendor' series, first from 1999 to 2001, and then from 2006 to 2009. They also created the non-fiction graphic novel 'The Quitter' in 2005. With writer Jonathan Ames, he released his graphic novel 'The Alcoholic' at DC/Vertigo in 2008.

Graphic novels
Another notable collaboration was with Jay Lynch, with whom he made 'Mo and Jo: Fighting Together Forever' for Toon Books in 2008. In 2010 he illustrated the semi-autobiographical novel 'Cuba: My Revolution' (2010, Vertigo), written by Inverna Lockpez and colourized by José Villarubia. The comic is a coming-of-age story about teenager Sonya who lives through Fidel Castro's Communist takeover of Cuba in 1959 and the CIA's failed attempt to stage a coup against Castro in the Bay of Pigs (1961). Gradually she loses her ideals about the revolution and its new regime. The book gained wide media coverage.

The Quitter by Billy Dogma
'The Quitter'.

Graphic contributions
Dino, as Dean is often called, has also contributed to anthologies like 'Bizarro Comics' (DC, 2001), 'The Amazing Adventures of the Escapist' (Dark Horse Comics, 2003 and 2008) and 'Alternative Comics' (2003-2005). He has done singles issues and stories for several Marvel comic books, such as 'X-Men Unlimited' #40 (2003), 'Spider-Man's Tangled Web' #20 (2003), 'Cyclops' #1 (2011), 'X-Men: First Class - Class Portraits' (2011) and 'The Amazing Spider-Man' #692 (2012). Dean Haspiel has worked with writer Evan Dorkin on Marvel's 4-issue mini-series 'The Thing: Night Falls on Yancy Street' in 2003. He has furthermore made features like 'Video King', 'Mummy Monster Sign' and 'The Scuzzbournes' for Nickelodeon Magazine, 'Thor's Day' for Shuttle Sheet magazine and 'Pot Monkeys' for High Times magazine. In 2015 he made five issues of the superhero comic 'The Fox' for Archie Comics with writer Mark Waid.

Cuba My Revolution
'Cuba: My Revolution'.

Haspiel is also one of the USA's more prominent authors of webcomics. In 2006, Haspiel was one of the founders of ACT-I-VATE, a webcomics collective, which also featured work by Dan GoldmanNick Bertozzi, Michel Fiffe, Leland PurvisNikki Cook, Tim Hamilton, and Josh Neufeld. Among Haspiel's contributions to the group were new 'Billy Dogma' serials like 'Immortal' (2006) and 'Fear, My Dear' (2007). Haspiel published his webcomic 'Street Code' on DC's webcomics imprint Zuda Comics in 2008, and in that same year he edited the webcomic anthology 'Next-Door Neighbor' for Smith Magazine. ran his webcomic with writer Tim Hall, 'The Last Mortician', in 2011. In that same year, Haspiel spearheaded the online platform 'Trip City', which is described as "a Brooklyn-filtered, multimedia, literary arts salon featuring free regular exclusive content created by a fellowship of 21st Century auteurs".

Haspiel received critical acclaim and an Emmy Award for his main title designs for the HBO show 'Bored to Death' in 2010. In 2017 he won a Ringo Award for 'The Red Hook' (2017). 

Books about Dean Haspiel
A monograph called 'Dean Haspiel: The Early Years' was written by Christopher Irving and published by IDW/Graphic NYC Presents in 2010. 

Since March 2009 he has his own Twitter account. 

The Thing by Dean Haspiel

Series and books by Dean Haspiel you can order today:


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