Comic News Insider is your podcast for everything comic book, animation, sci-fi and pop culture! With News, reviews and interviews that entertain and excite! Joe Gonzalez approached long time friend, former roommate and comic cohort Jimmy Aquino back in March 2005 about doing a podcast dealing with the comic book medium. Unfortunately, Jimmy had to decline but promised to participate once things began. Joe then approached co-worker/fellow comic nerd Julio Soto to co-host. Comic News Insider was born with Episode 1 on April 13, 2005. Within a few episodes, Jimmy started appearing as a "roving reporter". By the end of 2005 and with 20 episodes in the can, Julio had to step down. Joe again approached Jimmy to co-host. They sat down and mapped out a plan. A weekly formatted show covering the news of the industry with reviews and interviews from all sorts of luminaries from the comic book and entertainment field. Since 2006, they have not missed a week and have delivered on that mandate. CNI, the "Entertainment Weekly" of comic podcasts, continues to bring the fun and the funny! (Hey, it's better than being the "US Weekly" of comic podcasts.) Join Joe and Jimmy every Wednesday to laugh, learn and maybe even love!
Jimmy Aquino is the pretty one. The Asian one. The talent. The one ring to rule them all! And clearly, he's the one writing this bio. It's been said by his ex-girlfriend, "No one loves the sound of his own voice more than you!" And thus, a podcasting legend was born. In his spare time away from CNI, Jimmy tends bar in NYC, is Stated Magazine's Pop Culture Contributing Editor, dabbles in writing comic books, drops names, drinks heavily and goes to "gentleman's clubs" to rescue girls from the life. Twitter, Tumblr, Blog him.
Joe Gonzalez is the mastermind. The tech guy. The editor. CNI sprang from his fertile brain like a fertile brain baby. Normally a behind the scenes kind of guy, Joe takes to the mic like a crack head to his pipe. Often finding that he has to keep the show on track due to his co-host's rambling. He has a real life, full time grown up job that eats at his soul, so he travels often to recharge and curb the insanity. CNI is recorded live from his phat pad in Harlem.
*Joe has recently left the show but helps out with producing on occasion. His spirit is still there. Well, at least until Jimmy stamps it out completely. Please check out Joe saving the world with his non-profit endeavor The Project Solution.
Blair Butler is the cat's meow. A regular writer/producer for G4TV, her on air talent was finally discovered and she is now the resident comic book guru for G4TV. She can be seen regularly on Attack of the Show in her segment "Fresh Ink". (Which, is also her weekly video podcast!) Blair has been known to co-host AOTS, X-PLAY and I'm pretty sure I saw her on a recent episode of NINJA WARRIOR. Due to her extremely busy schedule, she has been unable to appear regularly on CNI for some time now but returns during convention season when available. We still love her! Oh yeah, she's funny, nerdy and purdy.
Maria Bernal-Silva is a big ol' geek. She used to be one of the hosts of the now defunct Girls Gone Geek podcast. Acting as their resident Sci-Fi, comic book, and gaming expert. With no outlet for her nerdiness, Comic News Insider called and Maria answered. She did interviews at San Diego Comic-Con 2009 and reported on several panels.
She's also a qualified and working filmmaker in her own right. She used those big Hollywood connections to land an interview with Rob Zombie himself at San Diego Comic-Con 2009. We're quite sure her roving reporting will land her interviews with some of the biggest names in the business. Or at least the guy from Star Wars who said "These aren't the droids you're looking for."
Brea Grant is best known for playing "Daphne", the speedster, on Heroes. An accomplished actress, she's also been in Friday Night Lights, Dexter, Halloween 2, Max Payne and so much more. She also is a comic book writer and debuted her and brother Zane's zombie comic (We Will Bury You) in 2010. When San Diego Comic-Con came about, she was recruited to do interviews for CNI and rose to the occasion! Having been a guest on CNI several times, she honed her interviewing skills to perfection.
Jimmy & Joe are now worried she may start her own podcast because she was so good at it. Good thing she's too busy shooting movie and TV roles.
Grace Helbig is already a super famous interweb type person. She and Jimmy were both interviewed (separately) by Stated Mag and soon found her web show, Daily Grace. He watched and laughed repeatedly. She only had a measly 15,000 subscribers on YouTube then and now she's approaching 400,000 (and just keeps rising). G4TV hired her as a correspondent for their flagship show, Attack of the Show. Funny how this all happened after co-hosting CNI a few times! Grace occasionly does reviews and interviews for us in her spare time when paid in alcohol.
Melissa Bleier first came to CNI as a favor to good friend Jimmy. He begged pleaded bought drinks asked her nicely if she would assist with some of the roundtables he was covering at San Diego Comic-Con 2010.After even more nice asking, Jimmy was able to persuade her to help cover again for SDCC 2011. Her sci-fi fandom is large and in charge and she brings great nerdy knowledge with her questioning. Just ask the casts of Supernatural and Grimm. They're still sweating over the grilling she gave them.
Unemployed Skeletor is the has-been arch enemy of He-Man. After the cancellation of the cartoon in the 80's, he found himself walking aimlessly through life. No job, no hope, no love. He started making his own video blogs and the star was rekindled! Of course, this all came about with his several appearances on CNI. To which the selfish, evil bastard doesn't even acknowledge!
Man, that's evil.
- Mike Cho is our resident manga/anime expert. Not to mention a frequent co-host and CNI photographer as well. He is a big contributor to our weekly news segment and convention correspondent extraordinaire!
- Kevin Conn is a regular co-host and has been doing correspondence for CNI for years at various conventions. He brings the funny and the nerd knowledge of all things comics, sci-fi and pop culture. Seriously, he knows his stuff well! Being a creative force himself in comics and comedy, it's always great to have Kevin on the scene.
- Emily Edwards is the official CNI choreographer! Okay, we don't really use her for her awesome dance skills that much, but she has ran the CNI booth at conventions, reported for the podcast and contributed news and reviews over the years.
- Kristin Garay is the nerd nexus that introduced CNI host Jimmy to a lot of the current CNI crew. They met back in their Browncoat days and since then, she has helped run the CNI booth at conventions over the years and helped contribute with news and reviews for the podcast as well.
- Jessica Spring Harmston is a new member to the CNI team. She joins as one of the official photographers. She has been working in the field of photography since she was an embryo. Talk about graphic pictures.
- Jon Hoche is a regular co-host and probably reads more comic books than any of us combined. Also a working actor, he brings his awesomeness to the podcast whenever he can and contributes news, reviews and interviews year round.
- Kasha Minenko is one of the official CNI photographers. Years of photography experience and her own delving into the world of manga/anime brought her to CNI's attention. She has covered the big 400th episode live recording among other CNI events/interviews.
- Anna Petterson is one of our UK correspondents reporting on various conventions and conducting interviews for CNI across the pond. She has been involved in the world of comic books for years and even helped run the Comic Village at MCM Expo for a few years.
- Gretchen Souerwine is a new member of the CNI team but brings her enthusiasm of sci-fi and new found love of comics to the podcast. She has co-hosted, ran the CNI booth at conventions and contributed to the weekly podcast. If you see her at a convention, look for her in a Doctor Who Tardis dress!
- Carrie Tucker is a professional writer and came to the attention of the CNI nerd world with her acclaimed book I Love Geeks. Even quoting CNI host Jimmy in a few pages. With that, she co-hosted a few shows and offered commentary as well as reports/reviews on comics, conventions and overall geeky news.