GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ Sheep Interview: Filip Sablik of 'Top Cow Universe' + giveaway! | I Smell Sheep

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Sheep Interview: Filip Sablik of 'Top Cow Universe' + giveaway!

By: Katie Dalton
Founder & Head Writer

Image Expo 2012 held in Oakland CA had so much to offer it was almost overwhelmmeing. Amongst the many artists, authors and actors we meet was the awesome group at Top Cow. I wasn't well versed in this amazing world but after stopping to chat one one one with their publisher I left energized and ready to jump right in and join the party!

Top Cow has offered up some comics at the end of this post so make sure to enter our giveaway. The transcribed interview is below, we hope you enjoy!

Katie: Hi, I'm Katie from I Smell Sheep thanks for talking with us today. Please introduce yourself and tell us a little about Top Cow.
Filip: Hi, I'm Filip Sablik the publisher of Top Cow. 2012 is going to be a really exciting year for Top Cow, not only because it's Image and Top Cow 20th anniversary but also because we are doing something in the Top Cow Universe called "Rebirth". So, Rebirth is spinning out of events of "Artifacts" which was thirteen issue series, mystical ancient artifacts. Individually it can be used for good or evil kind of sway and influence mankind depending on who's wielding them. If you bring them all together
at one place in one time some really bad stuff happens. We did this big event series called Artifacts and at the end of it some really bad stuff happens. The result of which is the Top Cow universe as we know it is gone and there is a new one in its place but it is kind of like It’s a Wonderful Life. Have you ever seen that movie?
Katie: Yes, a classic!
Filip: So Jackie Estacado is the bearer of the Darkness which was the one that ultimately kind of imposed his will on what the shape of the new universe was going to be. He's not a very big global thinker so he just changed a few things about his personal life just like George Bailey not being there has kind of a ripple effect, Jackie changing these little things has rippled out.

So for long time readers we wanted something very organic and linear there’s no like alternate history or time travel you know like a complete reboot. Everything that happened before happened and we are just moving forward. For new readers it’s a great time to jump on board because we are reintroducing all these characters and they are all effected slightly its a part of the fun part the story for long time readers and new readers to figure out what happened and why things are the way they are.

Kaite: How far do you see this new series going?
Filip: Well, we have three series that are kind of a part of this. There is Witchblade, Darkness and Artifacts. Hopefully, indefinite. Witchblade just hits 150th issue a few months back, Darkness 100 just came out and will be in stores soon we debuted it here at Image Expo. Those are pretty impressive stats for books that are not owned by big corporations.
Katie: Right, and that's the whole point of being here at Image Expo.
Filip: Right, yeah.

Katie: So who creates the Witchblade series?
Filip: Witchblade is being done by Tim Seeley and Diego Bernard. Tim is doing Hack/Slash, he's taken Sara Pezzini out of New York. She's no longer a police detective she's a private investigator living in Chicago and trying to make sense of her life, at this point a few of the issues have come out. One of the new things is in the old universe Sarah had a daughter and in the new universe that daughter is not there so…big question mark.

We have Artifacts, by Ron Marz (creator) and Stjepan Sejic (artist). Tom Judge, which is one of the main characters, and he is the first one to get a sense that something about this universe is not right and that he's the first one to get memories of this past life. He's going to be trying to solve the mystery of what happened and why things are the way they are.

Darkness #101, which comes out in March 2012, David Hine and Jeremy Haun are the creative team. What they've done with Jackie is kind of recreated this universe and he's given them his perfect life. So David and Jeremy are going to introduce that and then mess it up.
Katie: Just throw a wrench in it.
Filip: Right!

Katie: And what about the video game world? You have something new out now?
Filip: Yes, the Darkness II videogame which is awesome! Quad wielding is like the new thing that they've introduced. Are you a gamer at all?
Katie: No, no. But one of the Sheep writers Danielle is she's into Top Cow and a gamer! *turns microphone toward self* Hey Danielle!
Filip: Awesome. I like you Danielle, your cool.
Katie: She should be here but she's in New York so she goes to those cons. But she will be at the NY Comic Con later this year.
Filip: So then we'll have more stuff to tell her then.
Katie: Yup. You will see her in the I Smell Sheep gear.
Filip: I'm still trying to figure out why you guys are smelling sheep, and why they have bat wings.
Katie: And fangs!
Filip: They're vampire sheep?
Katie: Yeah!
Filip: I don't understand. I'm confused. *laughing*
Katie: That's the point!

Katie: So we can look forward to more later in the year?
Filip: Yeah, we'll have more of the 20th Anniversary projects that we will be announcing and rolling out. Should be exciting.

Katie: Thanks Filip for chatting with us today, we can wrap it up.
Filip: Yup that's it. But hey hi Danielle my wifes name is Danielle which makes her extra cool.
Katie: Did you hear that Danielle?!

A big final thanks once again to Filip and the team at Top Cow for taking the time to chat with me and offering up so many awesome comics for folks to win.

We have three prize packs to choose from so make sure to pay close attention when entering the contest. One unique winner will be chosen for each pack.

Pack 1 (US): Top Cow First Look-signed by Filip, The Darkness: Levels

Pack 2 (US): Witchblade: Redemption volumes 1-4

Pack 3 (International): Artifacts: Origins, The Magdalena volume 1

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. That must have been amazing. I am getting back into comics after quite some time. Hope I win]
    debby236 at gmail dot com

  2. I would like #2. If I walked into a new universe with no history, I think I would spy on people, maybe become a detective who couldn't be traced.

  3. I would love #2, if I were in that situation I think I would find a way to make a lot of money and be a millionaire. Hopefully I had some technology from my universe that they had never seen and could sell it for a pretty profit.

  4. I am not familiar with any of these other than perhaps some peripheral familiarity with Witchblade, so I would pick Pack 1, cause I really liked Flip! my second choice would be #3, but since I am not international I will leave that alone. Should I suddenly find myself in another universe you can be sure that I would have come equipped with my trusty backpack of tools. I would have moon-pies to introduce to the natives - huh and a bag of coffee beans to prepare a bracing cuppa. After-all once you have a moon-pie and a nice strong cuppa you can take on any universe = yep its true, I would not steer you wrong here! Thank you so much for sharing your adventure Katie and for bringing us this delightful interview.

  5. Since I've read Magdalena's stories and I'm not caught up on Witchblade yet, I would say Prize pack 1.

    If I walked into a new universe with no past or history..I would most likely start a cult. I've always dreamed of having a mindless group of minions that would do anything I asked.

    Awesome giveaway, as usual. You ladies rock!

    1. I will join your cult! do we get some cool cult like clothes to wear or shave our heads?

    2. Of course! We're going bald, tattooing our foreheads, wearing robes, using crazy cult-like nicknames and all of that. If I'm going to do it, might as well do it big ;)

  6. lol! confusing is good. I bet he remembers you and that sheep with the vampire wings and fangs! What a generous give away from Top Cow.

  7. I would like any of the packs, but if I had to pick one, then #2.

    I would go sightseeing.

    Thanks for the giveaway.

  8. All of these are awesome packs, and the stories are awesome!! Being a Top Cow Fan girl I fully support this thread and giveaway !!!!! Not to mention I got a shout out :)

  9. I am entering the INTERNATIONAL pack #3.

    If I walked into a new universe with no past or history I would probably freak out! But I think I would like the freedom to re-create who I am and be whoever I wanted to be.

  10. pack 3 (i'm international, hence the pack 3)

    my imagination is taking the day off.. so i'll stick to regular answer, just wandering around to get to know the neighborhood, and wonder how the heck i get there :D

  11. What pack you are playing for
    What would be the first thing you would do if tomorrow you walked into a new universe with no past or history? (use those imaginations!


    If i walked into a new universe with no past or history, then that universe would have to be completely knew... as in nanoseconds after the big bang, so naturally I would be god and would control the new universe. I would then spend the next few billion years creating planets, and species.... maybe a planet full of sheep? ;o

  12. Pack 3:International.

    I would make up the history. My word would be golden. As there would be noone to say I was wrong then I would be considered to be right. I'd have great fun .

  13. I'd love to win pack 2. I need to catch up on my reading!

  14. I would love to win pack 2..........

    I think i would just make up a whole new persona...I would still be a little punk and a lot bada** though :) Oh, and everyone would listen to me since no one here now ever does ;)

  15. I'm in Canada, so I'll throw my name in the hat for the 3rd prize.

    If I wound up in a universe with no history, it'd be time for some do-overs.

  16. I would love prize pack 2.

    What would I do if the universe had no history? I would weep non-stop. I'm a history buff so I would hate to see history just go poof. Then I would wander the earth and be a bard. Just tell stories of the past. Of course, no one would believe me and they will think I have a great imagination. Awesome.