Rich Johnston at the 2007
New York Comic Con
|Area(s)||Comics journalist, gossip columnist, comics writer|
Lying in the Gutters|
|Awards||Shel Dorf Award, 2012|
The Comics Journal described Johnston as having claimed to be "the oldest extant comics news reporter on the Internet." His past columns include "All The Rage" (for Silver Bullet Comic Books), and "Lying in the Gutters" (for Comic Book Resources).
Johnston began writing gossip on USENET newsgroups in 1994 as "Rich's Ramblings". He then took the column onto the burgeoning World Wide Web, with "Rich's Revelations" on the now-defunct Twist And Shout Comics website. He later started the comics gossip column "All The Rage" for Silver Bullet Comic Books, later Comics Bulletin.
Johnston wrote the column "Lying in the Gutters" for Comic Book Resources, posting rumours and gossip, with a traffic light icon imparting advisory caution as to the possible credibility of each rumour: a red light denoting the least likelihood of accuracy, a green light for the most credible reports, and a yellow light for those that fall somewhere in between.
Johnston's writing does not often impart sources. About that, Johnston said, "I often obfuscate sources to hide their identity—even deny that a story has sources on many occasions." Johnston sees himself as part of a tradition established by the "British tabloid press, one that seeks to entertain rather than inform."
On 27 March 2009, Johnston announced his launch of the website BleedingCool.com.
Bleeding Cool was nominated for the "Favourite Comics Related Website" Eagle Award in 2010 and 2011 and won in 2012. It was named as one of PC Magazine's top blogs of 2010. and Technorati gave it a perfect 1000 score for influence in the comics category. Johnston was awarded the Shel Dorf Award for Best Comics Blogger for his work on Bleeding Cool in 2012.
Johnston has written a number of comics, mainly consisting of one-shots and graphic novella. The first consists of parodies, such as Watchmensch and Civil Wardrobe (alluding to Marvel's 2006 story Civil War). The second include his original work, both creator-owned and those based on licensed properties, like Doctor Who: A Room With A Deja View, The Flying Friar (based on the life of Joseph of Cupertino) and Chase Variant which started life at Mam Tor Publishing's Event Horizon.
In 2007, he wrote the IDW trading card set George W. Bush and the Weapons of Mass Distraction.
In 2009, he had a story scheduled for the Spearmint anthology from Image Comics with Sleaze Castle writer-artist Terry Wiley. He wrote a short story, "Rustlin Up Business," for the second volume of Outlaw Territory, published in February 2011.
In 2012, he wrote a comic serialised in Dark Horse Presents entitled The Many Murders of Miss Cranbourne, with art from Simon Rohrmüller. He also wrote a series of parody comics for Boom! Studios, taking on Marvel Studios films, with Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, and The Avengers reinterpreted as "Iron Muslim", "Scienthorlogy," "Captain American Idol," and "The Avengefuls," respectively.
Johnston writes and draws weekly cartoons for the UK blogger Guido Fawkes, appearing each Monday and collected at RichAndMark.com.
His poster campaign for the Churches Advertising Network in December 2006 generated coverage, including a leader in the Times Newspaper and an appearance on BBC's The One Show.
He was an advertising copywriter until 2009.
In 2006, he appeared as a character in the comic book CSI: Dying in the Gutters as a source of "inside joke" humour by featuring him as the victim in a murder mystery set at a comic book convention and using other notable real-world comics creators as suspects in the crime. He also appeared as a character in the Jodie Picoult novel, The Tenth Circle and made a more major appearance in the Leverage novel The Con Job.
- Dirtbag (Twist and Shout Comics, 1995)
- The X-Files (Twist and Shout Comics, 1997)
- Rich Johnston's Holed Up (Avatar Pres, 2004)
- The Flying Friar (with Thomas Paul Nachlik, Speakeasy Comics, 2005)
- Civil Wardrobe (with various artists, including Darick Robertson, Ashley Wood and Frazer Irving, Brain Scan Studios, 2006)
- Watchmensch (with Simon Rohrmüller, Brian Scan Studios, 2009)
- Doctor Who: A Room With A Deja View (with Eric J., IDW, 2009)
- "A Trip into Space" (with Terry Wiley, in This Is a Souvenir: The Songs of Spearmint & Shirley Lee, Image Comics, 2009)
- Chase Variant (with Saverio Tenuta and Edmund Bagwell, Image Comics, February 2010, forthcoming)
- Kate and William: A Very Public Love Story (Markosia, April 2011, ISBN 1-905692-45-5) collects:
- The Many Murders of Miss Cranbourne, with Simon Rohrmuller, Dark Horse Presents (Dark Horse Comics, 2012)
- The Avengefuls, (Boom! Studios, 2012)
- Singer, Matt (14 March 2006). "Pulp Friction". The Village Voice. New York City. Archived from the original on 15 March 2006. Retrieved 27 January 2008.
- Dean, Michael (2005). "Online Comics Journalism: Does It Exist? Part 3: Rich Johnston's Honest Lying". The Comics Journal (266): 21–23. Archived from the original on 5 May 2006.
- Johnston, Rich (4 July 2013). "Adi Granov: Man Of Ilkley, Yorkshire". Bleeding Cool.
- "Lying in the Gutters". Lying in the Gutters. Comic Book Resources. 1 July 2002.
- Johnston, Rich (31 July 2000). "It Lives!". All the Rage. Silver Bullet Comic Books. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
- CBR's Lying in the Gutters Archives. Accessed 18 January 2008
- "2010 Eagle Awards nominations". The Beat. 24 May 2010. Archived from the original on 30 May 2010. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
- Griffith, Eric (11 November 2010). "Our Favorite Blogs: 2010". PC Magazine. Retrieved 12 November 2010.
- "Bleeding cool". 21 September 2011. Retrieved 2 April 2013.
- Ekstrom, Steve (5 March 2009). "Who Skewers the Watchmen? Rich Johnston on Watchmensch". Newsarama,. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Singh, Arune (14 August 2006). "Rich Johnston Changes Minds In "Civil Wardrobe"". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Marshall, Rick (17 April 2009). "EXCLUSIVE: 'Doctor Who: Room With A Deja View' Writer Rich Johnston Talks TARDIS And Time Lords". Splash Page. MTV. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Dowling, Tim (3 December 2007). "A saint with the powers of Superman". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Wigler, Josh (10 December 2009). "Johnston Pursues His "Chase Variant"". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Weapons of Mass Distraction. Accessed 27 January 2008
- Maev Kennedy (21 June 2007). "Report on George W Bush cards". London: Guardian. Retrieved 8 December 2011.
- Harrods Comic Timing Exhibition 2008. Accessed 17 October 2008
- Image Comics Solicitations for January 2009. Accessed 17 October 2008
- Good, Oliver (16 January 2011). "Wills'n'Kate: the comic book". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 17 January 2011.
- RichAndMark.com site. Accessed 27 January 2008
- The Guardian, Feb 28th, 2001 Accessed 27 January 2008
- PlayStation World UK. Accessed 27 January 2008
- Sequential Tart interview, November 2002. Accessed 27 January 2008
- Google News Cache. Accessed 27 January 2008
- Times newspaper, September 15th 2006. Accessed 27 January 2008
- After the Chalk Dust Settled, featurette on Chalk Series 1 DVD, ReplayDVD.co.uk, prod. and dir. Craig Robins
- Rich Johnston at the Internet Movie Database. Accessed 18 January 2008
- IDW's Dying In the Gutters' site. Accessed 27 January 2008
- Film Ick. Accessed 2 April 2013.
- Bleeding Cool. Accessed 2 April 2013.
- Johnston, Rich (7 June 2005). "Lying In The Gutters". ComicBookResources.com. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved March 30, 2016.
- Official Dirtbag site. Accessed 27 January 2008
- Official X Flies site. Accessed 27 January 2008
- Official Holed Up site Archived 20 February 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Official Flying Friar site". Flyingfriarcomic.com. Retrieved 8 December 2011.
- Civil Wardrobe download. Accessed 27 January 2008
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rich Johnston.|
- Bleeding Cool
- Lying in the Gutters, Johnston's Comic Book Resources column.
- Rich Johnston at the Comic Book DB
- Waiting For Tommy, Johnston's Dynamic Forces column (largely interviews).
- RichAndMark.com, Johnston's collection of non-commercial performance work.
- Rich Johnston at the Internet Movie Database
- Darius, Julian (4 November 2002). "Rich Johnston on Comics Gossip". Sequart Research & Literacy Organization.
- "Rich Johnston". 2000AD Review. 15 June 2005