After 33 Years, Bernie Mireault's The Jam Finally Gets Collected
The Jam – or The Jammer – is a superhero, created by Bernie Mireault, who falls into situations rather than hunts them out. He first appeared in 1985, published in titles by Matrix Graphic Series, then collected in a one-shot, The Jam Special #1 in 1987. A second special, The Jam, Urban Adventure: Super Cool, Color-injected, Turbo Adventure From Hell #1, was published in 1988 by Comico. In 1989, Slave Labor Graphics published The Jam, Urban Adventure #1–5. Tundra Publishing colourized and republished series in 1992. Dark Horse Comics published #6-8 from 1993 and Caliber Comics published issues #9–14 from 1995. The character returned to Dark Horse Comics with Madman/Jam, and Nexus Meets Madman were collected and reprinted as the Madman Boogaloo! Starring Nexus & The Jam trade paperback. Future Jam stories appeared from Evil Twin Comics, CO2 Comics, BEM Graphics,, EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy and most recently About Comics, collecting Bernard Mireault's first four Jam stories as well as a second issue of The Jam, Urban Adventure: Super Cool, Color-injected, Turbo Adventure from Hell #2.
Passing from one independent publisher to the next, it never settled in one place long enough for any publisher to say "hey, let's put out a book!" – and this despite the fact that the first five issues present a single storyline, perfectly presentable as a graphic novel. Now, tiny-but-persistent publisher About Comics has finally collected those first five issues, as well as some earlier The Jam short stories, as The Jam: Urban Adventure: Beginnings.
The Jam tells the story of Gordon Kirby, a laid back resident of Montreal who at night becomes the hero known as The Jammer. Dressed in a homebrew costume, he and his goofy dog Harvey patrol the rooftops of Montréal, addressing what problems they find in their own casual style. In this particular tale, Gordie must deal with a fanatical cult bent on mayhem, and do so in his own unique fashion.
Canadian Comics Hall of Fame cartoonist Mireault has gone through the work, re-toning it for modern reproduction and making some small story adjustments to create a work that he is comfortable with. "When Bernie approached me about publishing the new issue – The Jam Super-Cool Color-Injected Turbo Adventure From Hell issue 2, which came out early this year — I of course wanted to do a quick compilation of the early material," explains Nat Gertler, founder of About Comics. "It was Bernie's insistence on getting it right that made it a bit of a wait, but it's well worth it."
The Jam: Urban Adventure: Beginnings is a 168 page 7"x10" black-and-white trade paperback with over 150 pages of comics, plus a few pinups. It is $20 in print but a PDF version can be ordered for $10 here. Established retailers interested in generous wholesale terms (50% off with easy-to-reach free shipping limits) should email firstname.lastname@example.org.