Our Mission:

Retcon Punch is dedicated to fostering thoughtful discussions on comics and comics culture. We firmly believe that comics are an art-form that not only supports close readings, but rewards them. We love digging into (and arguing about) current comics, and encourage you to join the conversation — either in the comments sections of our articles, or by signing up to guest-write with us.

Editorial Staff

DrewDrew Baumgartner, Editor-In-Chief

Location: Dundee

History With Comics: Drew grew up with Superman pajamas. His best days were when he never had to change out of them. He fell in love with Batman the Animated Series when he was 5. He had never read a comic in his life, but started reading Batman trades when he was in high school. He continued to pick up trades and one-offs throughout the 00’s, but never got into the monthly swing. After almost a decade of being an outsider looking in, Drew seized upon DC’s relaunch to start picking up monthlies.

Favorite Series: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Saga, The Vision, Spider-Woman


PatrickPatrick Ehlers, Editor

Location: Los Angeles

History With Comics: Patrick came late to the comics game. After enjoying adaptations of Batman, Superman and the Justice League, he was finally tricked into picking up a set of graphic novels after seeing Robert Rodriguez’ Sin City. Naturally, this lead to further exploration of Frank Miller’s work, specifically with Batman. But it was not until an unexplainable desire to read Blackest Night that Patrick began purchasing the trades of Geoff Johns’ run Green Lantern. With a convenient new entry point and a handful of friends to follow him into the madness, Patrick began reading monthlies with the New 52’s Justice League #1.

Favorite Series: Afterlife with Archie, Star Wars, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Paper Girls, Zero


SpencerSpencer Irwin, Editor

Location: Delaware

History with Comics: Spencer was introduced to the Adam West Batman TV series as a very young child and has been obsessed with superheroes ever since. The DC animated cartoons of Bruce Timm and Paul Dini kept him satiated during a childhood with little access to comic books, and although his attention largely shifted to anime during high school, eventually the stars aligned: Spencer graduated, got a job across the street from a comic book shop, and, after scouring Wikipedia, dove head first into DC comics — starting with Infinite Crisis — and never looked back. He recently branched into Marvel monthlies as well, and basically just spends way too much money on comics in general. It’s not like he has anything better to spend it on.

Favorite Series: The Wicked + The Divine, The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Exiles, Runaways, Lazarus


michael2Michael DeLaney, Associate Editor 

Location: Chicago

History with Comics: In a Beaver Cleaver-ish act of wholesome Americana, Michael first became acquainted with comic books when his father would buy him some with his daily newspaper on his way to work. Batman: The Animated Series formed his essential idea of superhero awesomeness. Infinite Crisis and Identity Crisis  opened him up to the near-endless pantheon of DC Comics characters. Like Galactus, Michael has an insatiable appetite for comic book characters and their histories. He loves DC Comics and respects the arguably more successful Marvel Comics. Geoff Johns taught Michael that comic books can be as epic as movies and Grant Morrison taught him that the most powerful thing in the world is an idea. The Earth-3 version of Michael is a tool.

Favorite Series: Batman, Bizarro, Action Comics, Green Lantern: The Lost Army, Lando

skpShelby Peterson, Designer

Location: Chicago

History With Comics: While the X-Men will always hold a special place in her heart, Shelby’s first love was Batman. Between Michael Keaton and Kevin Conroy, she fell hard. Like many, her first graphic novel was The Watchmen in college, followed by a handful of the Batman must-reads. Fast forward to last year: Shelby discovered the awesomeness of the DC universe through Geoff Johns’ Green Lantern Rebirth and Blackest Night. She once again fell in love with a comic book character, but this time it was Neil Gaiman’s Morpheus from his Sandman series, and now all her thoughts are translated into 8 or 9 panels per page with the occasional 2-page spread.

Favorite Series: Wonder Woman, Saga, Young Avengers, Swamp Thing, Animal Man


 Writing Staff

TaylorTaylor Anderson

Location: Chicago

History With Comics: Taylor’s first exposure to comics came at the hands of his older brother, a huge Spider-Man fan. In particular, the Maximum Carnage run made an impression on the young Taylor, probably because it was violent and had aliens you could wear as suits. While he made hand drawn comics with his friends off and on for years in grade school, Taylor’s interest in comics wasn’t rekindled until he started reading online comics in college. A couple years later, some friends started throwing comics at Taylor and now he’s finding himself inexplicably drawn to their pages.

Favorite Series: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Justice League Dark, The Manhattan Projects



Ryan Desaulniers

Location: London

History with Comics: Ryan‘s mom did not want him to read comics, but his dad totally did, so Ryan surreptitiously ogled Wolverine having his adamantium ripped out until high school. The finer parts of puberty dominated most of Ryan‘s attention until the week before college, when he whimsically purchased the Cable and Deadpool: Burnt Offering TPB. Hooked again, he subscribed to some titles and discovered the world of comics outside of the superhero genre. Since then, Ryan used The Walking Dead in his senior-year thesis to the chagrin of the English Department, and has been reading enough to earn himself the street cred necessary to become a writer on Retcon-Punch.

Favorite Series: Batman, Daredevil, Trees, Ms. Marvel, Sex Criminals



Mark Mitchell

Location: Los Angeles

History with Comics: Mark grew up watching the Tim Burton Batman movies and the animated DC universe work of Bruce Timm, but didn’t start reading comics until high school when he borrowed a friend’s copy of Crisis on Infinite Earths. It was an awesome, but incredibly confusing, entry point. So he started diving further into the DC catalog and basically never stopped. Mark also reads some Marvel stuff, but there’s no good story there. He has met Stan Lee, though.

Favorite Series: Justice League, Batman and Robin, Hawkeye, Captain America



Shane Volpone

Location: New York

History With Comics: Shane grew up on Superman and X-Men comics, and can still tell you way more about the complicated histories of Jean Grey and her alternate universe children than any sane human being may want to know, but it wasn’t until his aunt’s boyfriend gave him a large box of random comics that he realized just how insane the industry was. He’ll happily read just about anything, embracing the advent of digital comics (to the relief of his small Manhattan apartment), but when it all comes down to it? Superman will always be his hero.

Favorite Series: The Wicked + The Divine, Action Comics, Letter 44, Prophet