Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary















March 23, 2019


Go, Read: Katie Skelly Interviews Jaime Hernandez

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Go, Read: RC Harvey Remembers TK Ryan

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If I Were In South Carolina, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Charlottesville, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

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Happy 65th Birthday, Shelton Drum!

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Happy 64th Birthday, KAL!

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Happy 40th Birthday, Joe Daly!

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March 22, 2019


Go, Look: Nearly-Decade Old Lorena Alvarez Site

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Collective Memory: Emerald City Comic-Con 2019

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Links to stories, eyewitness accounts and resources concerning the 2019 edition of Emerald City Comic Con, held March 14-17 in and around the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle.

This entry will continue to be updated for as long as people

*****

Institutional
* Con Site
* Physical Location
* Host City

Blogs And Personal Journals
* The Beat ECCC19 Index
* The Stranger

Facebook
* ECCC Facebook Presence

News Stories And Columns
* KGMI
* KING5
* KIRO7
* Q13 Fox
* Seattle Times
* Seahawks.com
* Seattle Times 01
* Seattle Times 02
* SYFY

Photos
* Bleeding Cool
* Seattle PI Gallery

Twitter
* Sam Sykes

*****



*****

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Go, Look: Jack Teagle's Paintings

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Missed It: Oh The Places You'll Boldly Go Wins Its Copyright Challenge On First Amendment Basis

imageHere's the best article I've read about the court win enjoyed by Oh, The Places You'll Boldly Go! in terms of explaining how elements of the book -- a mash-up of the Dr. Seuss post-graduation gift and the general creative endeavor that is the Star Trek franchise -- match up to various copyright issues and claims. I'm not familiar enough with the Glenn Hauman/Ty Templeton/David Gerrold work to know if this were more directly comics in a formal sense if there would be any changes in this analysis, but I don't think so. My broad experience is that despite the awfulness of having work disrupted this way, any court challenge where a judge looks closely at these issues frequently ends up being a boon to free speech and expression. I would imagine there are a lot of works like this one that may fall short of meeting an exact definition of parody but function in a way to still be protected.

As the article notes, this is a next step -- and likely last one -- to a decision made back in 2017 that brought about a reformulation of the case on slightly different grounds. The suit was filed in Fall 2016.

Congratulations to those victorious. I hope publisher ComicMix came out of this okay in terms of financial cost and/or any penalty from this lengthy scheduling disruption, and that they'll alert the work's perceived audience more directly if money is needed to alleviate such circumstances -- perhaps in terms of people buying the work in question.
 
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If I Were In South Carolina, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Sebastopol, I'd Go To This

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Forthcoming Comics-Related Events, Through April 2019

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*****

March 23
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This (C2E2)
* If I Were In South Carolina, I'd Go To This (Swan Con)
* If I Were In Charlottesville, I'd Go To This
* If I Were Near This, I'd Go To It (Heroes Dutch Comic Con)
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This (BuckeyeCon 2019)

March 24
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This (C2E2)
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In SF, I'd Go To This
* If I Were Near This, I'd Go To It (Heroes Dutch Comic Con)

March 25
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This

March 26
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

March 28
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

March 29
* If I Were In Kansas City, I'd Go To This (Planet Comicon)
* If I Were In Anaheim, I'd Go To This (WonderCon)
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This

March 30
* If I Were In Kansas City, I'd Go To This (Planet Comicon)
* If I Were In Anaheim, I'd Go To This (WonderCon)
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In SF, I'd Go To This

March 31
* If I Were In Kansas City, I'd Go To This (Planet Comicon)
* If I Were In Anaheim, I'd Go To This (WonderCon)

*****

April 1
* If I Were In SF, I'd Go To This

April 2
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

April 3
* If I Were In Toronto, I'd Go To This

April 4
* If I Were In Davenport, I'd Go To This (ICAF)

April 5
* If I Were In Davenport, I'd Go To This (ICAF)
* If I Were In St. Louis, I'd Go To This (Wizard World)
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Sonoma, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

April 6
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)
* If I Were In Davenport, I'd Go To This (ICAF)
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This (MoCCA Festival)
* If I Were In St. Louis, I'd Go To This (Wizard World)
* If I Were In Los Angeles, I'd Go To This

April 7
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This (MoCCA Festival)
* If I Were In St. Louis, I'd Go To This (Wizard World)

April 8
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)

April 9
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

April 10
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)

April 11
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)

April 12
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)

April 13
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)
* If I Were In Denver, I'd Go To This (DINK)
* If I Were In Ann Arbor, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In LA, I'd Go To This

April 14
* If I Were In Luzern, I'd Go To This (Fumetto)
* If I Were In Denver, I'd Go To This (DINK)
* If I Were In LA, I'd Go To This

April 16
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

April 17
* If I Were In Montreal, I'd Go To This

April 19
* If I Were In Rhinebeck, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This

April 23
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

April 25
* If I Were In Calgary, I'd Go To This (Calgary Expo)

April 26
* If I Were In DC, I'd Go To This (Awesome Con)
* If I Were In Calgary, I'd Go To This (Calgary Expo)

April 27
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This (SPACE)
* If I Were In DC, I'd Go To This (Awesome Con)
* If I Were In Calgary, I'd Go To This (Calgary Expo)
* If I Were In Dayton, I'd Go To This (Gem City Comic Con)

April 28
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This (SPACE)
* If I Were In DC, I'd Go To This (Awesome Con)
* If I Were In Calgary, I'd Go To This (Calgary Expo)
* If I Were In Dayton, I'd Go To This (Gem City Comic Con)

April 30
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

*****

Events For April 2019 Onward Listed Here

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Not Comics: Paintings By Andrew Wyeth

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Go, Look: Steve Alphonse

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Ken Parille on Alvin Buenaventura's Private Stash.

* congratulations to Tim Seeley on his new gig as managing editor at Heavy Metal. He succeeds Rantz Hoseley.That could be a great and valuable market for a lot of comics-makers.

* Jenny Robb informs that the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum just received a bunch of work from the late Oliver Harrington. My memory is that for the detail he would pack into his work, Harrington worked at a deceptively small scale.

* finally: congratulations to Miriam Libicki. Libicki is a very interesting comics-maker and that program will be lucky to have her.
 
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Happy 48th Birthday, Jay Stephens!

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Happy 90th Birthday, Mort Drucker!

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Happy 34th Birthday, Sophie Goldstein!

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March 21, 2019


Go, Look: Ori Toor

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Go, Look: Simon Gane For Burning Sky Brewery

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The Never-Ending, Four-Color Festival: Shows And Events

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By Tom Spurgeon

* an ECCC report from alt-weekly giant The Stranger. I heard that the security was a pain, that the show is generally solid after some years when early-year attendees weren't as happy with it, and that they've kept up their choice to separate aspects of the show.

* Eric Powell hits the road. My memory is he is very entertaining.

* we really need to stop making speculation on fictional characters' sexual preference into full-bore news stories. By the way, stay away just in general: this has the most obnoxious load-in noise I've ever heard from a web site.

* finally: the SDCC Masquerade rules are out there now.
 
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OTBP: Gene Colan: Visions Of A Man Without Fear

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not sure where this popped up in my linking activities, but it's a good one
 
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Go, Look: Danger Is Our Business #1

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Todd Klein on Mysteries Of Love In Space #1.

* Ben Towle dives deeply into a Smokey Stover strip that appeared in A Christmas Story.

* I am all for honorable and ethical businesses in comics and the role they play, but this article about a new comics endeavor apparently inspired by industry veterans dreaming of one more potential Netflix payday was so openly crass that Sausage Man, Man of Sausage might not make it to the end without puking. There does also seem to be a bit of a collective industry eye roll in some semi-private spaces at Bill Jemas' involvement, rare in that that kind of disapproval rarely gets expressed where folks see it.

* go look at Will Dinski's resume.

* finally: follow Jason's example and live-draw every few decades.
 
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Happy 44th Birthday, Marek Bennett!

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Happy 43rd Birthday, Jeff Lemire!

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Happy 57th Birthday, Mark Waid!

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Happy 33rd Birthday, Emi Gennis!

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March 20, 2019


Go, Look: Zero Civilian Casualties

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By Request Extra: Three From Brian Canini And Drunken Cat

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Here. I don't know if it's true or not, but I've had the sense this year that we've seen a shift from the boutique publishers to micro publishers like Drunk Cat. That wold make some sense give the number of small press shows April to September.

At any rate, this is a modest ask from a publisher with the work already complete. Consider supporting this one or one of the crowd-funder covering similar territory.
 
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Go, Look: Images By Khoi Pham

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* by request extra: Julia Gfrörer has a Patreon now. That's a highly-skilled, very interesting cartoonist and one that deserves widespread support.

* Evan Narcisse talks to David F. Walker.

* Gary Tyrrell points out the underlying value in the crowd-funders Shaenon Garrity and her creative partners put together.

* finally: Ryan Cecil Smith has boots to recommend.
 
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All-Time Comics Bogeyman Fredric Wertham Was Born On This Day In 1895

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March 19, 2019


OTBP: Fantagraphics Spring Sale This Week

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Bundled, Tossed, Untied And Stacked: Publishing News

By Tom Spurgeon

image* this news article about DC doing a Frank Miller/JR JR year one of Superman book this summer has a significant supply of story hooks. The creators are at interesting points in their careers, the character has a high-profile within the comics line, the idea of bring attention to a project like this one with book-publishing type strategies bears watching, the whole idea of where this project will sit. with similar stories at the same company might be a bit nerdy for most but it's something that still has some weight. I'm sure there are a dozen more. I figure how this book works on audiences will drive a lot of its impact. That sounds banal, but comics has a long history of manufacturing event-type comics and rules for their success have yet to be set in stone.

* Derik A Badman points out new books from mighty Fremok.

* here's the talent line-up for the Diane Noomin-edited Drawing Power, out in September and much-anticipated: Rachel Ang, Zoe Belsinger, Jennifer Camper, Caitlin Cass, Tyler Cohen, Marguerite Dabaie, Soumya Dhulekar, Wallis Eates, Trinidad Escobar, Kat Fajardo, Joyce Farmer, Emil Ferris, Liana Finck, Sarah Firth, Mary Fleener, Ebony Flowers, Claire Folkman, Noel Franklin, Katie Fricas, Siobhan Gallagher, Joamette Gil, J. Gonzalez-Blitz, Georgiana Goodwin, Roberta Gregory, Marian Henley, Soizick Jaffre, Avy Jetter, Sabba Khan, Kendra Josie Kirkpatrick, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Nina Laden, Miss Lasko-Gross, Carol Lay, Miriam Libicki, Sarah Lightman, LubaDalu, Ajuan Mance, MariNaomi, Lee Marrs, Liz Mayorga, Lena Merhej, Bridget Meyne, Carta Monir, Hila Noam, Diane Noomin, Breena Nunez, Meg O'Shea, Corinne Pearlman, Cathrin Peterslund, Minnie Phan, Kelly Phillips, Powerpaola, Sarah Allen Reed, Kaylee Rowena, Ariel Schrag, M. Louise Stanley, Maria Stoian, Nicola Streeten, Marcela Trujillo, Carol Tyler, Una, Lenora Yerkes and Ilana Zeffren. Wow.

* finally, new work this year from November Garcia.

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Go, Look: Jason Sholtis

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Isha Bhattacharya talks to Nicole Marie Burton. John Adcock talks to Ron Ferdinand.

* not comics: this succinct NYT article on the rhetorical judo that Netflix in announcing their decision to cancel the virtuous but asserted-to-be-low-rated One Day At A Time is interesting to note. We're at a high point for maximizing profit in all facets of every commercial endeavor but also for valuing the virtue of decisions of support that are much more difficult to quantify. Comics will have to deal with this as well on more occasions, with the same construction of logic that a single line of licensing for Guardians Of The Galaxy could probably pay for two dozen low-selling but admirable comic books. Why make everything pay for itself when there's so much to be developed?

* finally: Barry Pearl on Empire Of Monsters.
 
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Happy 57th Birthday, Michael Jantze!

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Happy 67th Birthday, Willie Schubert!

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Happy 44th Birthday, Sergio Ponchione!

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March 18, 2019


Go, Look: Juliette Vaast

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Go, Read: Russ Maheras On Visiting Steve Ditko

Here. I'm not sure it's our healthiest collective impulse to want to know this much about the late Hall Of Fame cartoonist's studio arrangement, but I imagine this will satisfy many people's curiosity.
 
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Go, Look: Janne Kukkonen

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Collective Memory: Emerald City Comic-Con 2019

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Links to stories, eyewitness accounts and resources concerning the 2019 edition of Emerald City Comic Con, held March 14-17 in and around the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle.

This entry will continue to be updated for as long as people

*****

Institutional
* Con Site
* Physical Location
* Host City

Blogs And Personal Journals
* The Beat ECCC19 Index

Facebook
* ECCC Facebook Presence

News Stories And Columns
* Seattle Times

Photos
* Seattle PI Gallery

Twitter
* Sam Sykes

*****



*****

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*****
*****
 
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Go, Look: Classic Panel Work From Virgil Partch (VIP)

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Comics By Request: People, Places In Need Of Funding

By Tom Spurgeon

image* the Gahan Wilson health needs crowdfunder is halfway to its initial ask.

* today is the last day of submissions for this year's Creators For Creators grant. That's a good program, with sterling intentions.

* the great Shaenon Garrity and Skin Horse co-creator Jeffrey Wells were able to meet their initial goals on their latest in a measurement of hours, not days. Let the bonus rewards begin.

* finally: twelve days to help out Birdcage Bottom Books with its current crowdfunder.
 
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Not Comics: More Franklin Booth Images

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Go, Look: Frank Quitely-Era New X-Men Designs

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Go, Read: Alex Dueben Talks To Jim Scancarelli

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Derf is quietly one of the reliable on-line comics content finders going.

* the late Flo Steinberg remembered on what would have been her 80th birthday.

* speaking of Derf, one thing I learned from him is the Cleveland Plain-Dealer goes from a skeleton crew to like three bones and a chunk of cartilage. I've been following the collapse of the newspaper industry from its 2008 initial free fall into now, and it really looks like the complete and final end of something. There's a need for community news-papering maybe more than ever before, but no ability to get there and no appetite for it that might push a bunch over the top. I wonder how long most of them will hang on, and what will take the place of most.

* this is a vicious cycle even by the general standard of vicious cycles. You can break it, though.

* finally: Noah Van Sciver shows love for Michael Dougan. I hope someone will collect his late '80s/early '90s comics one day. That's a great abebooks purchase in the meantime.
 
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Happy 51st Birthday, Shea Anton Pensa!

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Happy 64th Birthday, Bill Reinhold!

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Happy 58th Birthday, Michael J. Vassallo!

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Happy 47th Birthday, Farel Dalrymple!

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March 17, 2019


Go, Look: Virgil Finlay Illustrations

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Not Comics: Harry Clarke Illustrations

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If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This

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Happy 67th Birthday, Richard Pachter!

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Happy 63rd Birthday, Patrick McDonnell!

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March 16, 2019


Go, Look: America's Air War In Somalia

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Go, Look: Ikea Wants Me To Think They're Nice

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If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Modesto, I'd Go To This

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Happy 78th Birthday, Carlos Giménez!

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Happy 62nd Birthday, Steve Lafler!

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Happy 58th Birthday, Todd McFarlane!

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Happy 44th Birthday, Dan Stafford!

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March 15, 2019


TK Ryan, RIP

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Collective Memory: Ted Stearn, 1961-2019

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this article is now archived
 
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If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Modesto, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Rob Clough on Structures 57-66.

* Sam Henderson remembers a childhood encounter with TK Ryan similar to my own. My father knew Sam's grandparents, we figured out at SDCC 1997. I think Jim Davis' time working as Ryan's assistant shaped a lot of Davis' understanding of the rewards and pitfalls of having a strip, and its course of syndication was a significant factor in how Davis approached Garfield. Ryan's was an exceedingly handsome strip, was limited in ways obvious and invisible by its caricatures and hit early before settling into a long client fade.

* finally: let the cartoon responses to the horrors of the New Zealand mosque shootings begin. This reminds of me the famous Mauldin JFK response, although the symbolism isn't its own point as it was in '63.
 
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Happy 48th Birthday, Scott Kurtz!

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Happy 39th Birthday, Alex Segura!

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Happy 60th Birthday, Ger Apeldoorn!

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March 14, 2019


Go, Look: Alex D Araiza

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Go, Look: JR JR Black And White Images

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The Never-Ending, Four-Color Festival: Shows And Events

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By Tom Spurgeon

* the writer Bill Schelly writes about his great weekend at San Diego Comics Fest. It's a good reminder that some shows are better for some people than other shows are. It makes sense that a show where people might have grown up reading comics from Jim Warren are a good place to sell Schelly's anticipate biography. It sounds simple, but a lot of individual con criticism doesn't take into account this matching aspect.

* ReedPOP acquires Supercon.

* Jen Bartel will offer two artists mentorship advice in conjunction with the 2019 FlameCon. Looking at twitter suggests there was a bumpy road for some folks in applying to this year's iteration of the surging, super-popular show. I'm still sorting out what people are saying, but it's so difficult to run a show in which so many people have a passionate interest I'd be surprised if no one had a different take on how things are being done. I'm sure there will be a thorough discussion of these matters, and hope everyone gets a great deal of what they want.

* finally: celebrity friends of the court weigh in on one of the matters facing Salt Lake City vs. San Diego cons. Where this all eventually ends up in terms of its relationship to what laws exist I figure will unfold at its own pace and according to factors that fail to encompass the entirety of my own opinions on the matter. I do think that whether or not it's convincing to the court in the final analysis, shows have in this modern explosion of such events consistently evoked a meaning of the phrase that is specific to San Diego's version of the concept. I mean, I'm sure there were toga parties before Animal House but I never went to one that wasn't referring to that film's specific take on the concept.
 
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If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This

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Go, Look: Jorge Fornés

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Todd Klein on Green Lantern #4.

* this interview with principals at AfterShock is a lot less challenging than I usually dive into, but I like the occasional journalist Kiel Phegley and I have to admit I don't know anything about AfterShock -- even best-face-forward stuff.

* finally: a new comics-related podcast with Joe Gordon involved. That should be pretty good. Plus, for those of us in the states: soothing English accents!
 
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Happy 50th Birthday, Simon Fraser!

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Happy 67th Birthday, Tom Batiuk!

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Happy 64th Birthday, Steve Bissette!

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Happy 53rd Birthday, JP Stassen!

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Happy 67th Birthday, Brian Walker!

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March 13, 2019


Go, Look: Yugo Ishikawa

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Go, Look: Old-Fashioned Pin-Ups By Georges Pichard

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This Isn't A Library: New, Notable Releases Into Comics' Direct Market

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*****

Here are the books that make an impression on me staring at this week's no-doubt largely accurate list of books shipping from Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. to comic book and hobby shops across North America.

I might not buy all of the works listed here. I might not buy any. You never know. I'd sure look at the following, though.

*****

JAN191420 NOBODYS FOOL LIFE & TIMES OF SCHLITZIE THE PINHEAD GN $24.99
imageDEC181851 COMPLETE CREPAX HC BOX SET VOL 03-04 SPELLS & PRIVATE LIFE $150.00
AUG181284 WILL EISNER SPIRIT CORPSE MAKERS HC SGN $39.99
JAN191562 PEANUTS TP LUCY SPEAKS OUT $9.99
JAN192175 COMICS OF RUTU MODAN SC $30.00

I couldn't find a whole lot right up my alley in terms of this week's comics. Bill Griffith's biography of Schlitzie The Pinhead is exactly the kind of thing I like to see and buy at the comics shop, though, so I'll be a pleased customer. I quite like the way the book looks. Ditto the third and fourth volume of the Fantagraphics Crepax works, one of those artists that has a primary, baseline appealing way of looking at the world. The Eisner is by Franco Francavilla. I'm not sure how much Spirit not by Will Eisner I ever need to see, but if I must I hope it is as fun as this Francavilla no doubt will be. I don't particularly like those Peanuts volumes, but it seems significantly cleaned up from a previous volume or two I've seen. I don't list a ton of academic works, but Rutu Modan is a fine cartoonist, well worthy of this kind of study.

*****

The full list of this week's releases, including some titles with multiple cover variations and a long, impressive list of toys and other stuff that isn't comics, can be found here. Despite this official list there's no guarantee a comic will show up in the stores as promised, or in all of the stores as opposed to just a few. Also, stores choose what they carry and don't carry so your shop may not carry a specific publication. There are a lot of comics out there.

To find your local comic book store, check this list; and for one I can personally recommend because I've shopped there, albeit a while back, try this.

The above titles are listed with their Diamond order code in the first field, which may assist you in finding comics at your shop or having them order something for you they don't have in-stock. Ordering through a direct market shop can be a frustrating experience, so if you have a direct line to something -- you know another shop has it, you know a bookstore has it -- I'd urge you to consider all of your options.

If I failed to list your comic, that's because I hate you.

*****

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Go, Look: BWS Images In Black And White

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Go, Look: A Special Batman Adventures Pin-Up Section

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Kim Jooha on comics from Stefanie Leinhos.

* Chip Zdarsky doesn't need no stinking parking lot.

* Shuja Haider talks to Eli Valley.

* Austin English digs a bit into a New Yorker article on Charlotte Salomon. Salomon is familiar to some of you reading this, no doubt as one of those artists who works with principles of comics without being seen as a practitioner of that particular art form. It may be easier to see the comics influence in an article like this one that avoids mentioning comics at all.

* KAL recommends CRNI.

* finally: I like these Feiffer-esque sketches by Natalie Nourigat.
 
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Happy 47th Birthday, Andrew Weiss!

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Happy 98th Birthday, Al Jaffee!

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Happy 41st Birthday, Marc Sumerak!

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Happy 50th Birthday, Mike Sterling!

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Happy 66th Birthday, RA Jones!

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March 12, 2019


Go, Look: Angela Fanche

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7Your 2018 Cartoonist Studio Prize Long Lists

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Here. This is the prize that Slate does with CCS (represented by Keren Katz) and an outside media person, this time out the podcaster Gil Roth of Virtual Memories.

It's a good list. The lists are spread out so widely no one is going to hit everyone's favorites. Among those missing that made several 2018 lists are Michael Kupperman's All The Answers and Nick Drnaso's Sabrina.

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The Cartoonist Studio Prize for Best Print Comic of the Year: 2018 Shortlist

* Chlorine Gardens by Keiler Roberts. Koyama Press.
* Girl Town by Carolyn Nowak. Top Shelf.
* Passing for Human by Liana Finck. Random House.
* Poochytown by Jim Woodring. Fantagraphics.
* Space Academy 123 by Mickey Zacchilli. Koyama Press.
* Tongues No. 2 by Anders Nilsen. No Miracles.
* Why Art? by Eleanor Davis. Fantagraphics.
* Windowpane by Joe Kessler. Breakdown. (pictured above)
* Yellow Negroes and Other Imaginary Creatures by Yvan Alagbé. New York Review Comics.
* Young Frances by Hartley Lin. AdHouse.

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The Cartoonist Studio Prize for Best Web Comic of the Year: 2018 Shortlist

* "As Before, So Behind" by Ted Closson.
* "Being an Artist and a Mother" by Lauren Weinstein.
* Comics by Tara Booth.
* The Girl Who Flew Away by M. Dean.
* "Having a Role in Life" by Elísabet Rún, translated by Unnur Bjarnadóttir.
* Nancy by Olivia Jaimes.
* "Sylvia Plath's Last Plan" by Summer Pierre. (pictured above)
* This Modern World by Tom Tomorrow.
* Three Comics by E.A. Bethea.
* "A Trip to the Museum With Cartoonist John Porcellino" by Gabrielle Bell.

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Go, Look: Hermann Images From Jeremiah: Mercenaries

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Bundled, Tossed, Untied And Stacked: Publishing News

By Tom Spurgeon

image* this Diane Noomin-edited anthology due early Fall looks very exciting. Look for it in September.

* the paperback version of Dan Gearino's fine Comic Shop: The Retail Mavericks Who Gave Us A New Geek Culture is imminent, and Mr. Gearino has a preview.

* finally, I'm not sure I'd yet seen previews of individual DC Zoom books yet. I know that this kind of work getting into the market for this demographic is a big deal, and I'm happy for the books to exist and the readers to have fun, although having come from the old comics-as-unique-expression camp it's hard for me to praise demographic victories over artistic ones -- at least not right away.
 
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If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Napa, I'd Go To This

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Go, Look: Tsutomo Nihei Images

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Sean Gaffney on Aria The Masterpiece Vol. 1.

* Francoise Mouly and Genevieve Bormes talk to Jaime Hernandez. Rob Beschizza profiles Cartoonist Kayfabe from Jim Rugg and Ed Piskor. Jeff Richards profiles Bill Fortune.

* the movie featuring the revamped Captain Marvel character that's become a major character in those comic books this last decade did very well at the box office. There had been some conservative dude-complaining about some dumbfuckery related to the film, bolstered by a bit of on-line malfeasance, but it didn't have a significant effect on the movie's performance.

* finally: the workhorse recording agent and posterity's friend Jamie Coville has arrived back from King Con 2019 with audio, photos and a report.
 
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Happy 39th Birthday, Nathan Schreiber!

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Happy 91st Birthday, Sy Barry!

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Happy 57th Birthday, Graham Nolan!

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March 11, 2019


OTBP: Ginseng Roots Subscriptions

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Collective Memory: Ted Stearn, 1961-2019

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this article is now archived
 
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Go, Listen: John Siuntres Talks To Ed Brubaker

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Comics By Request: People, Places In Need Of Funding

By Tom Spurgeon

image* the Birdcage Bottom Books crowd-funder seems to be going astoundingly well. They are inches away from their initial ask as I type this, the ask seems reasonable and more likely to draw people to their side than drive them away, and the books they're doing complement one another.

* the recent Gahan Wilson ask is near the halfway point of its initial ask, impressive given its size.

* the latest David Willis book is off to a smashing start.

* not comics: my version of a 'zine celebrating the role-playing game Traveller would only cover character generation.

* here's a campaign for a sequel to the talked-about Black.

* finally: here's a posthumous Steve Ditko publication from the late cartoonist's partnership with Robin Snyder. For some of my friends, those Ditko comics are the sole justification for the entire idea of comics crowd-funding.
 
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Go, Read: Emma Allen Talks to Mort Gerberg

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Go, Look: Garry Leach Original Art Pages Scanned From A Dream Of Flying

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Brian Nicholson on The Ideal Copy. Morgan Pedraza on Ethics In The Gutter. The great J. Caleb Mozzocco on a bunch of different comics.

* Henry Chamberlain talks to Bill Griffith.

* Bob Temuka writes about how his passion for all things X-Men finally breathed its last. I find it interesting that you can make a type-of-content analysis of this or simply declare that the comics made after a certain point -- save for the Grant Morrison run -- just weren't very good. Personally, I liked the San Francisco set-up but I didn't care much for the stories told with it, just like I adore the few years before issue #94 and the X-Men just kind of roaming around like a group of 1970s TV guest stars, but could never get behind any of the stories told with that set-up.

* finally: Daniel Worden on Oil Comics.
 
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Happy 42nd Birthday, J. Caleb Mozzocco!

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Happy 55th Birthday, Lea Hernandez!

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Happy 43rd Birthday, Simon Pierre Mbumbo!

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March 10, 2019


If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In San Diego, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Corte Madera, I'd Go To This

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Happy 55th Birthday, Troy Hickman!

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Happy 44th Birthday, Jason McNamara!

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Happy 43rd Birthday, Randy Chang!

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FFF Results Post #519 -- Modern Female Superheroes

On Friday, CR readers were asked to "Name Five Female Superhero Characters Created After 1980." This is how they responded.

*****

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Mike Pfefferkorn

1. Jade (Jennifer-Lynn Hayden)
2. Miss Martian (M'gann M'orzz)
3. Terra (Atlee)
4. Liberty Belle / Jesse Quick (Jesse Chambers)
5. Jakita Wagner (pictured above)

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Tom Spurgeon

1. Crazy Jane
2. Angel Of Tarzana (pictured above)
3. Silk Spectre II
4. Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan)
5. Oracle

*****

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Tim Hayes

1. Ragged Robin (in The Invisibles)
2. Judge America Beeny (in Judge Dredd)
3. Polychrome (in Nocturnals)
4. Artemis (in Wonder Woman)
5. Jane Foster as Thor (in Thor) (pictured above)

*****

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Douglas Wolk

1. Diamondback (Rachel Leighton)
2. Rocket (Raquel Ervin)
3. Gwenpool
4. No-Girl
5. Whisper (pictured above)

*****

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William Burns

* Promethea
* Batwoman [Kate Kane]
* Ms. Marvel [Kamala Khan] (pictured above)
* Empowered
* Elektra

*****

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Des Devlin

1. The Pro (The Pro)
2. Elastigirl (The Incredibles)
3. Lying Cat (Saga)
4. Terra (Teen Titans) (pictured above)
5. Astra Furst (Astro City)

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Sean Kleefeld

1. Robin (Carrie Kelly)
2. Captain Marvel (Monica Rambeau) (pictured above)
3. Mega Girl (Alison Green)
4. Ms. Marvel (Sharon Ventura)
5. Elsa Bloodstone

*****

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Oliver Ristau

1. Wave
2. Mother Panic
3. Pamela Adams
4. Helena Crash
5. Windblade (pictured above)

*****

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Dave Knott

* Empowered
* Liz Sherman (pictured above)
* Atom Eve
* Jessica Jones
* The Female

*****

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Mark Brodersen

1. Katana
2. Promethea
3. Faith (Valiant) (pictured above)
4. Livewire (Valiant)
5. Dr Mirage

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March 9, 2019


Go, Look: Kuri Huang

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Go, Read: Noah Van Sciver Reviews Piero

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If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In San Diego, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Santa Rosa, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Santa Rosa, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In LA, I'd Go To This

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Happy 57th Birthday, Mike Kazaleh!

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Happy 43rd Birthday, Ivan Grubanov!

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Happy 56th Birthday, Pier Nicola Gallo!

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Happy 51st Birthday, Brian Biggs!

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Happy 67th Birthday, Rick Burchett!

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March 8, 2019


If I Were Near Gainesville, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In San Diego, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In LA, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Montreal, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In LA, I'd Go To This

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Chris Mautner on Blame This On The Boogie.

* by request extra: the Gahan Wilson crowdfunder is doing well, but getting to the initial goal is going to take one hell of an effort. He's had an amazing career. Let's support him as best we can through this era of diminished capacity. Tell a friend.

* finally: Nadja Sayej at the Guardian profiles Robert Crumb in support of a new exhibition. Crumb's lived enough of his life publicly that I would imagine very little new ground is broken in the responses. Update: A couple of readers begged to differ because of the article's focus on Crumb's saying he's lost a great deal of his libido. I have read him on that subject, although I imagine it's new for most people to hear. I'm also not sure how interesting a declaration that is in terms of how it shapes the end result -- I realize on that last point I'm probably way at odds with conventional wisdom.
 
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Happy 49th Birthday, Brent Willis!

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Happy 44th Birthday, Eric Powell!

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Happy 47th Birthday, Paul Sloboda!

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March 7, 2019


The Never-Ending, Four-Color Festival: Shows And Events

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By Tom Spurgeon

* ECCC is bearing down upon us for mid-Month. That was a really good show when I visited it a few times over a short period, but it's been a while so I can't say for sure although the enthusiasm of pros as a measure marks this as a quality experience. Certainly Seattle has many pleasures and I suggest doing some advance work on where to eat dinner so you can avoid the chains and hit something unique. There are good independent coffeehouses easily found as well.

* here's a piece on security measures at ECCC. I'm sure the potential indictments in that piece will work themselves out before the weekend or we'll here about it on Monday. It is a quirky building for something that public, and it's easy to get lost in some parts of it. One advantage this has meant for the convention is that it keeps separate the comics and pop-culture parts of the show in that they don't feel close to one another, which I think makes for a better comic-book show.

* ECCC is still I think the psychological starting point for the convention year, particularly for mainstream and indie-genre cartoonists, so expect to see attention to festivals and shows nearly every week moving forward, at least until mid-October.

* finally: before ECCC, we get San Diego Comic Fest and its old-school pacing and guest list. It always sounds fun to me.
 
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If I Were Near Gainesville, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In San Diego, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In LA, I'd Go To This

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* couldn't be happier that mainstream US comic books turned out to be weird enough to sustain what-the-fuck articles like this one a quarter century after they became a staple of a lot of our Internet diet.

* the backers of this particular crowd-funding campaign are a bit more aggressive than usual. I'm not sitting around wanting more Marx Brothers in a way that makes me think a project like this will facilitate it, but I do have an interest in modern performers working time-worn characters as formula.

* festivals extra: here's a quick snapshot of the South Carolina comics scene. No one ever talks about South Carolina. It's our most mysterious state.

* finally, a bit of not-comics: the instability of game developing may provide some clues as to how models develop for comic-book cartoonists. Or not. It's sort of depressing either way, though.
 
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Happy 50th Birthday, Cully Hamner!

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Happy 41st Birthday, Robin McConnell!

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Happy 61st Birthday, Peter Gross!

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Happy 41st Birthday, Ben Templesmith!

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March 6, 2019


OTBP: You Don't Get There From Here #48

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Go, Look: Early Barry Windsor-Smith Images

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This Isn't A Library: New, Notable Releases Into Comics' Direct Market

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*****

Here are the books that make an impression on me staring at this week's no-doubt largely accurate list of books shipping from Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. to comic book and hobby shops across North America.

I might not buy all of the works listed here. I might not buy any. You never know. I'd sure look at the following, though.

*****

JAN191419 A FIRE STORY HC GN $24.99
I didn't find much of anything I liked this week -- if I missed something significant and obvious -- so this effort by Brian Fies popped more that it probably would have. That's a heck of a story to have to tell and a harbinger of environmental mishaps to come.

imageDEC180858 ZIGGY PIG SILLY SEAL COMICS #1 $3.99
JAN191394 GIANT DAYS #48 $3.99
NOV180434 DOOMSDAY CLOCK #9 (OF 12) $4.99
NOV180435 DOOMSDAY CLOCK #9 (OF 12) VAR ED $4.99
Comic-book comics. I don't know if Marvel is doing a bunch of 80-year anniversary one-shots, but the Fago-era comic showed off here does sport an all-time title. The next is John Allison, and I always buy John Allison. The third is the latest Watchmen/DC Universe thing and the pacing in this comic is sort of remarkable given how controlled it was in the original series. Maybe that will be the series' formal point.

DEC180659 PROMETHEA 20TH ANNIV DELUXE EDITION HC VOL 01 $49.99
DEC180662 WILD STORM TP VOL 03 $16.99
NOV180659 STAR WARS EMPIRE STRIKES BACK GN $9.99
NOV181689 BLAKE & MORTIMER GN VOL 25 VALLEY OF THE IMMORTALS $15.95
JAN191968 GANG OF FOOLS GN (MR) $17.99
JAN191905 BREAKAWAYS GN $12.99
JAN191906 BREAKAWAYS HC GN $19.99
Here's a bunch of things I want to see, anyway, a kind of walking tour through modern trade publicaiton. There's an archival comic, a collection of the latest high-end adventure comics serial, another Star Wars thing (I've lost track of which one this is, but I feel that way about the movies, too), a classic French album from a length series, a stand-alone original story and a genial sports soap aimed at younger raiders released in two formats at once. If I were determined to leave with something, I bet I could.

JAN192173 BEN KATCHOR CONVERSATIONS SC $25.00
Katchor is one of our smartest, most inventive cartoonists and one of the best people to listen to talk about the form.

*****

The full list of this week's releases, including some titles with multiple cover variations and a long, impressive list of toys and other stuff that isn't comics, can be found here. Despite this official list there's no guarantee a comic will show up in the stores as promised, or in all of the stores as opposed to just a few. Also, stores choose what they carry and don't carry so your shop may not carry a specific publication. There are a lot of comics out there.

To find your local comic book store, check this list; and for one I can personally recommend because I've shopped there, albeit a while back, try this.

The above titles are listed with their Diamond order code in the first field, which may assist you in finding comics at your shop or having them order something for you they don't have in-stock. Ordering through a direct market shop can be a frustrating experience, so if you have a direct line to something -- you know another shop has it, you know a bookstore has it -- I'd urge you to consider all of your options.

If I failed to list your comic, that's because I hate you.

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If I Were Near Gainesville, I'd Go To This

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Go, Look: Marcos Martin Superhero Imagery

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* I turn around for what feels like 20 minutes and suddenly I'm no longer first in line to review the Tom Of Finland underwear collection. 2012 is finally over.

image* this is the Yngwie Malmsteen guitar solo of comics short stories.

* not comics: I'd forgotten there was a Bernard and Huey film.

* go, read: Wiley Miller apologizes.

* this is an interesting take on the influence of Chris Claremont on pop culture. I'm not sure it's a take I share, but it's readable and laudatory.

* go, look: My Bod.

* we are a couple of weeks away from the deadline for the Creators For Creators grant. We're also close on Toronto's forthcoming Asian Zine Fair.

* Noah Van Sciver pays tribute to Josh Cotter.

* finally: did I remember to congratulate the great Lynda Barry on this fellowship? I think I may have. How about Sophie Yanow on this translation prize (for an excellent book)?
 
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Happy 41st Birthday, Robyn Chapman!

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Happy 52nd Birthday, Kieron Dwyer!

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March 5, 2019


Go, Look: Food Used To Be A Lot More Dangerous

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Here Are Updates In Two Different High-Profile Comics Court Cases

* Mark Waid and the case brought against him by Comicsgate-related individuals, made that much more prominent in comics circles by Waid raising money to aid in his defense, is apparently looking at a motion to dismiss based on jurisdictional grounds and is doing some light discovery, the writer reports in a new update.

* according to an e-mail distributed by the group, the AAEC has filed a letter of support for Ted Rall's case to dismiss an anti-SLAPP motion regarding charges the cartoonist is making about the the LA Times and the LAPD.
 
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OTBP: Ain't It So?

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Bundled, Tossed, Untied And Stacked: Publishing News

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By Tom Spurgeon

* great to hear about a first Max Clotfelter collection, from Birdcage Bottom Books! Looks like that one comes out in September.

* unless I'm counting wrong or timelines are weirder than I remember, looks like a sixth issue of Pope Hats is due in June. That would be the first issue since the Young Frances serial finished.

* the graphic novel iteration of The Handmaid's Tale is previewed here.

* finally: I covered this from a funding perspective but not a publishing one: Pickle #11: coming soon.
 
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If I Were Near Gainesville, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This

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Go, Look: Michael Lark Original Cover Art, Scene Of The Crime

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* that's an impressive start for the Gahan Wilson crowdfunder regarding his mental capacity moving forward. We need better solutions in place five years from now and it's up to ever single non-creative in comics to try and spearhead a solution, that should be our job. In the meantime, we just need solutions, so I hop you'll consider giving.

* Tom Shapira on Mob Psycho 100 Vol. 1.

* Jesse Reklaw strikes me as a very good choice for TCJ's daily cartoonist series.

* not comics: a posthumously discovered work by a great cartoonist is usually occasion for joy but I think it's right to take a skeptical look at any estate or trust that for-profit publishes work an artist did not release in their lifetime.

* R Crumb endorses The Book Of Weirdo.

* finally: I wasn't aware Michel Vrana had a site up devoted to his book design work.
 
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Happy 68th Birthday, Lat!

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March 4, 2019


Go, Listen: Gil Roth Talks To James Sturm

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Go, Look: The Ocean

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By Request Extra: Gahan Wilson Needs Transitional Help

Here. That is a huge request, and thus I worry about it being met, but Wilson is a huge figure in modern cartooning and maybe that will do it. I also have to imagine that every little bit helps. Please consider a donation. Please share the campaign.

We need to have a sustained, constructive conversation about the community's support of cartoonists in need, because it not only remains tough for cartoonists to put together enough in resources to take care of these emergencies, we're also getting less help from industry actors -- there's a huge number of complaints out there right now about late and refused payments -- and the basic healthcare infrastructure seems to conspire about facilitating basic needs let alone special.

In the meantime, we can all hopefully help a bit in direct fashion. All best to Wilson and his family in this latest time of need.
 
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If I Were Near Gainesville, I'd Go To This

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Go, Look: Paintings By Loustal

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Alex Dueben talks to Joe Giella.

* ugh, I'm really tired of the recent spate of wasn't-acceptable-in-1974-holy-shit-what-are-you-thinking racism of English-language cartoonists. I don't know if Canada has a commission to rubber stamp this as totally cool like they seemingly have in Australia, but nothing would surprise it. What a failure of art.

* by request extra: longtime writer about comics Sean T. Collins has a patreon for a bunch of non-comics writing he does.

* Michel Fiffe on All-Star Squadron. Nathan Chazan on Windowpane. Tegan O'Neil on Corto Maltese: Secret Rose.

* go, read: The Tale Of The Can Opener.

* not comics: vote for James Kochalka's beer label!

* finally: remember when Miracleman's arch nemesis was Joe Paterno? That turned out to be prescient.
 
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Happy 63rd Birthday, Randy Stradley!

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Happy 50th Birthday, Glenn Hauman!

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Happy 46th Birthday, Chip Mosher!

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Chip Mosher is the only one in comics who looked like he owned an NFL football team in the 1970s. Happy birthday, pal.
 
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March 3, 2019


Go, Look: 1979's National Comics Shop Register

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This is fascinating and fun; a quick scan indicates there are probably about eight to ten of these still operating in some form or another.

* postscript one
 
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Go, Look: The Strength Of Man

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Go, Look: Jo, Zette And Jocko Covers By Hergé

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If I Were Near West Palm Beach, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Vancouver, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Corrales, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Nashville, I'd Go To This

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Happy 71st Birthday, Max Allan Collins!

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Happy 41st Birthday, Skottie Young!

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Happy 66th Birthday, Dan Mishkin!

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Happy 43rd Birthday, Augie De Blieck!

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March 2, 2019


The Comics Reporter Video Parade


Cartoonist Kayfabe Profiles TCJ #152


Wendy Pini Sketching Video Summer Pierre Talked About On Twitter


Iron Cartoonist At MICE


Lamar Alexander Honors Charlie Daniel


John Byrne On A Tour Of His House
 
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Go, Look: Glynnis Fawkes At TCJ.com

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Go, Look: Hole

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If I Were Near West Palm Beach, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Vancouver, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Corrales, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Boston, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

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Happy 67th Birthday, Mark Evanier!

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March 1, 2019


OTBP: Spring Wild

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Go, Read: Brian Hibbs On A Colon-Cleansing Of The Direct Market Serving Comics And Hobby Stores

Here. The headline suggests it's a plan for the comics industry entire, but mostly it looks to me like the longtime industry advocate in hoping to clean up the worst variant-related offenses and clear up some general ordering impediments to make the DM work the best it can. They all seem worth endorsing on my first read. On a second, I might express some doubts about whether or not getting out of the DM stores' way actually leads to systemic reform. We'll see!

It's interesting, too, that Hibbs looks at current kids' comics numbers as a sign that specialized selling will experience a surge in a few years' time.
 
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Go, Look: Some Al Williamson I've Never Seen

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Assembled, Zipped, Transferred And Downloaded: News From Digital

By Tom Spurgeon

* I wish I knew more about how Comixology works with both information it gets from Amazon and to engage current comics realities. Like I would have thought that Captain Marvel would be dominant on the front page rather than one of a smattering of selections. That's not something I'll figure out doing anything other than paying a lot more attention, though.

* this article points to the writer's shift away from webcomics as a sign of how social media has changed on-line consumption. I figure that's true in the widest. Social media is content about you, your friends and the things you choose to spend your time on. Everything else pales in comparison. At some point there will be a significant, sustained pushback against social media driven consumption, but I don't expect it to have a significant impact on the basics of how media is consumed.

* finally: an exploration of a dominant format.
 
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If I Were In Vancouver, I'd Go To This

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If I Were In Athens, I'd Go To This

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* Paul Mavrides points out the various failures at work within the comics community when it's come to varying levels of support for disgraced child molester and Dragon Con co-founder Ed Kramer.

* I wish Scott Stantis would stop by my studio and chat with me.

* not comics: here's a broad pop-culture think piece on the imminent release of a Captain Marvel movie adhering closely to the relaunch spearheaded by writer Kelly Sue DeConnick and her collaborators. I'm always uncomfortable with art being treated as a measured consumable, but I am for inclusive subject matter across the spectrum of entertainment and have witnessed how powerful an experience that can be for those that have not enjoyed seeing themselves reflected in these giant efforts the way they should have. I hope kids in particular get to enjoy a special moment or several with this film.

* Pat Kerrigan talks to Brian Fies. Kristen Ravin talks to James Sturm.

* finally: a controversial story with any number of difficult elements leads, non-surprisingly, to a cartoon backlash. It's hard to figure out why this one had to happen at all.
 
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Happy 67th Birthday, Joyce Brabner!

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Happy 42nd Birthday, Benjamin Marra!

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