|Headquarters location||San Jose, California|
|Key people||Dan Vado, publisher|
Jennifer de Guzman, editor-in-chief
Slave Labor Graphics (SLG) is an independent American comic book publisher, well known for publishing darkly humorous, offbeat comics. Creators associated with SLG over the years include Evan Dorkin, Roman Dirge, Sarah Dyer, Woodrow Phoenix, Jhonen Vasquez, and Andi Watson.
Slave Labor Graphics was started in 1986 by Dan Vado, who remains the company's president and publisher.
The first book Slave Labor Graphics published was ShadowStar #3, a female superhero character previously published independently by some of Vado's friends. The company's first wave of titles — Samurai Penguin, Barrabas, Lee Flea, and The Light — were all written by Vado, with art by a variety of creators. Other early titles, such as Hero Sandwich and It's Science With Dr. Radium, were all created by friends of Vado's from high school.
Slave Labor Graphics's first major success was Samurai Penguin #1 by Vado and Mark Buck, which sold 58,000 copies in the summer of 1986. Other successes were Milk & Cheese, a comic about mean-spirited anthropomorphic dairy products by Evan Dorkin, and Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, a comic about the adventures of a serial killer by Jhonen Vasquez. In this time period, comic book speculation was rampant, so Slave Labor Graphics was able to sell its entire print run of many titles. However, at the end of the mid-1990s speculation bubble, some distributors went out of business without paying Slave Labor Graphics.
In 1995, Slave Labor Graphics added a more genre-oriented imprint called "Amaze Ink" intended to be for all audiences; the "stranger, more adult, and more difficult to categorize material" would still be published under the main "Slave Labor" imprint.
In 2005, Slave Labor Graphics entered into a partnership with The Walt Disney Company to produce comic book series based on some of its properties: Haunted Mansion, Wonderland, Tron, and Gargoyles. Its own creations, such as Little Gloomy (1999–2005), Kid Gravity (2003–2007), and The Super Scary Monster Show: Featuring Little Gloomy (2005–2007), appeared regularly in Disney Adventures magazine.
In September 2008, SLG remodeled its lobby to be a smaller gallery/shop which opened as Boutiki in San Jose in December 2008. The gallery/shop is still operating (with name of Art Boutiki) as of 2014 December.
In late 2010, Slave Labor Graphics established an independent record label entitled Slab Yard Sound Company.
In January 2012, editor-in-chief Jennifer de Guzman, who had been with the company since 2001, left to become the PR and Marketing Director at Image Comics.