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
















August 24, 2017


Go, Look: Priya Huq

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

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By Tom Spurgeon

* that's a good-looking ICAF this year, and runs right into Short Run. I hope to be there; I've been dying to do Short Run for years and it just hasn't worked out.

* Orson Scott Card will not be reappearing at the Comic Con in Salt Lake City, after what sounds like a multi-layered argument over whether the outspoken conservative author and his views on LGBTQIA issues would be welcome and if so in what context.

* the show with which I'm involved, Cartoon Crossroads Columbus (CXC), could use a few more volunteers. We have a good time, and the volunteer coordinator, Tracie Santos, is aces.

* finally, did I run a link to Chris Pitzer's Heroes Con photos? I should have; they're mostly fun and occasionally creepy.

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

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Forthcoming Comics-Related Events, Through September 2017

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*****

August 25
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were In Hawaii, I'd Go To This (Amazing! Hawaii Comic Con)
* If I Were In Las Cruces, I'd Go To This (Las Cruces Comic Con)

August 26
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were In Hawaii, I'd Go To This (Amazing! Hawaii Comic Con)
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Las Cruces, I'd Go To This (Las Cruces Comic Con)

August 27
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were In Hawaii, I'd Go To This (Amazing! Hawaii Comic Con)
* If I Were In Las Cruces, I'd Go To This (Las Cruces Comic Con)
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This (JKM100)

August 28
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This (JKM100)

August 29
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This (JKM100)

August 30
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This (JKM100)

*****

September 1
* If I Were In Atlanta, I Would Go To This (Dragon Con)
* If I Were In San Francisco, I'd Go To This (San Francisco Comic Con)
* If I Were In Brussels, I'd Go To This (Brussels Comic Strip Festival)

September 2
* If I Were In Atlanta, I Would Go To This (Dragon Con)
* If I Were In San Francisco, I'd Go To This (San Francisco Comic Con)
* If I Were In Brussels, I'd Go To This (Brussels Comic Strip Festival)

September 3
* If I Were In Atlanta, I Would Go To This (Dragon Con)
* If I Were In San Francisco, I'd Go To This (San Francisco Comic Con)
* If I Were In Brussels, I'd Go To This (Brussels Comic Strip Festival)
* If I Were In Atlanta, I'd Go To This

September 4
* If I Were In Atlanta, I Would Go To This (Dragon Con)

September 8
* If I Were In Nashville, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were In Durham, I'd Go To This

September 9
* If I Were In Nashville, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This (Rose City Comic Con)
* If I Were In Austin, I'd Go To This (STAPLE!)

September 10
* If I Were In Nashville, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This (Rose City Comic Con)
* If I Were In Austin, I'd Go To This (STAPLE!)

September 16
* If I Were In Bethesda, I'd Go To This (SPX)
* If I Were In Memphis, I'd Go To This (Memphis Comic Expo)

September 17
* If I Were In Bethesda, I'd Go To This (SPX)
* If I Were In Memphis, I'd Go To This (Memphis Comic Expo)

September 18
* If I Were Near Leeds, I'd Go To This (Thought Bubble)
* If I Were In NYC, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Brooklyn, I'd Go To This

September 19
* If I Were Near Leeds, I'd Go To This (Thought Bubble)
* If I Were In Providence, I'd Go To This

September 20
* If I Were Near Leeds, I'd Go To This (Thought Bubble)
* If I Were In Philadelphia, I'd Go To This

September 21
* If I Were Near Leeds, I'd Go To This (Thought Bubble)
* If I Were In Pittsburgh, I'd Go To This

September 22
* If I Were In Baltimore, I'd Go To This (Baltimore Comic-Con)
* If I Were In Madison, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were Near Leeds, I'd Go To This (Thought Bubble)
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

September 23
* If I Were In Baltimore, I'd Go To This (Baltimore Comic-Con)
* If I Were In Madison, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were Near Leeds, I'd Go To This (Thought Bubble)
* If I Were In San Jose, I'd Go To This (APE)

September 24
* If I Were In Baltimore, I'd Go To This (Baltimore Comic-Con)
* If I Were In Madison, I'd Go To This (WW)
* If I Were Near Leeds, I'd Go To This (Thought Bubble)
* If I Were In San Jose, I'd Go To This (APE)

September 28
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This (CXC)
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

September 29
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This (CXC)
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

September 30
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This (CXC)
* If I Were In Minneapolis, I'd Go To This (TCZF)
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

*****

Events For October 2017 Onward Listed Here

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*****
 
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Go, Buy Stuff: Art Of Coop Store

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posted 1:10 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Rob Clough on Black Hood: An Anthology Of Depression And Anxiety.

* Gina Wynbrandt would like you to rally around the current 2dcloud crowd-funder.

* Sean Kleefeld digs into Fantastic Four #352. Fantastic Four comics can be anything a creator wants it to be but in my perfect world the series is dependably fun, well-executed comic done by an elite professional with a fondness for the characters. Beyond that, anything goes.

* Chuck Dixon claims he'll soon be the most prolific comics writer of all time, moving past 40,000 pages. Dixon is certainly a prolific writer, but he doesn't feel like a legendarily prolific one. Not like I'm going to double-check the math here.

* finally, a reminder of the works created in book format by the great Richard Sala.
 
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Happy 76th Birthday, Jim Scancarelli!

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Happy 51st Birthday, Keith Knight!

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Happy 57th Birthday, Scott Lobdell!

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August 23, 2017


Go, Look: Kelly Bastow

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posted 9:00 am PST | Permalink
 

 
By Request Extra: Gilbert Hernandez Found Some Self-Published Love & Rockets #1s

imageHere. He's offering up some add-ins and some other stand-alone stuff. Legend > Lenticular, every time, when it comes to your shopping dollar. I'd buy three if I had the money.
 
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OTBP: Dig

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You Know What King Kirby And Stan The Man Didn't Need? Lenticular Covers...

Here. As I understand it, Marvel has misjudged the popularity of their books during a promotion designed to heart-paddle some life back into the line. In using variant covers to goose orders this not-really-a-relaunch, Marvel has made a popular-looking cover art strategy dependent on extremely hard-to-reach-and-stay-solvent sales points rather than something more modest and achievable to varying degrees throughout the sales profile of the average shop that would like to stay in existence.

I've never bought a special stamp let alone a special comic-book cover, and in the end no matter the short-term benefit it's not healthy for things to be sold in a crappy market that are extensively disconnected from people's desire for the content involved. Marvel shouldn't need retailers to tell them this, and if they do need to hear it they should make it before the point after which reform is possible.
 
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Go, Look: Monlongo

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posted 1:30 am PST | Permalink
 

 
This Isn't A Library: New, Notable Releases Into The 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.

*****

MAR171784 LADIES IN WAITING HC $24.99
This is a rough week in the same way that the last few weeks of comics at the shop seemed easy: I lack context for even the most obvious things, and enthusiasm isn't all that high across the board. In that spirit, this release from Fantagraphics in their exploration of Spanish comics culture and art is super well-reviewed and I'll be coming at it straight-up cold as ice. Those are both great creators and Javier Olivares is talented as hell.

imageAPR170060 CALLA CTHULHU TP $12.99
Here's something a bit different: YA entertainment involving Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer, working with solid creators Erin Humiston, Mario Gonzalez and Bill Mudron. The line that stuck with me from an interview is that this might feel the need for female-centric material for this age group that isn't fight-oriented. Even if I got that wrong, I'll still check it out. Looks cute.

JUN170341 KAMANDI CHALLENGE #8 (OF 12) $3.99
FEB170397 REVOLUTION AW YEAH #3 $3.99
APR170795 DYING AND THE DEAD #5 (RES) $3.99
JUN170762 LAZARUS X PLUS 66 #2 (OF 6) (MR) $3.99
JUN170775 MOONSTRUCK #2 $3.99
JUN178448 SNOTGIRL #6 2ND PTG $2.99
MAY179024 ROBOTECH #1 2ND PTG $3.99
This is all borderline comics for me, so I might find something new to read. The Kamandi Challenge I'd forgotten all about, but my own gribute to Kirby through my festival ended up a no-go and I know how difficult it is to see any such project to completion. The Aw Yeah is that little kid stuff you might remember being applied to Teen Titans, primarily, but this time focused on IDW's overlapping sets of toy properties like Micronauts and GI Joe. Dying And The Dead is Jonathan Hickman, and I've been reading all the Hickman I can lately. Lazarus is Greg Rucka and Michael Lark, but with friends taking part in this side series of shorts between major story arcs. I enjoy that one, I like near-future world building and it's clever to do one that counts on the world looking like 100 people moving between film sets. Moonstruck is Shae Beagle and Grace Ellis and very, very cute. Snotgirl is too many issues for me not to have it figure out, but I'm still working on it. Robotech was the cartoon show companion for my 5 AM chocolate cheesecake eating self-hatred athons during high school. I have fond memories of the show, I suppose, but I have no interest in seeing more of it, you know? I've reached my lifetime's allotment on that particular thing. A lot of particular things.

MAY171363 VALERIAN GN VOL 17 ORPHAN OF THE STARS $13.95
I guess people hated the movie for that arch chauvinist thing that French culture sometimes puts out there as retro and charming. These comics sure are gorgeous, though, and I remember Laureline on the page being a pretty straight-up admirable hero character.

JUL171616 VIETNAM JOURNAL SERIES 2 TP VOL 01 INCURSION $16.99
This is just to remind me that this series is happening again.

JUN172297 ART OF AARDMAN HC $24.95
I have no particularly refined aesthetic for art books, and haven't bought one since a Studio Ghibli thing at Comix Revolution in Evanston maybe a full decade ago now. I also read enough comics and see enough animation I don't necessarily want to live in those places longer than the art itself would have me stick around. I still look at the ones when I like the subject matter, though. What can it hurt?

JUN172314 RUBE GOLDBERGS SIMPLE NORMAL HUMDRUM SCHOOL DAY HC $17.95
I think this is an all-ages series emphasizing the crazy-contraption aspect of Goldberg's existence, packaged and published by Abrams. It's hard to imagine there's anything here for me but there aren't a lot of series with a comics element for me to all the way blow it off.

JUN171827 HILDA & BLACK HOUND TP $10.99
This is a reprint from the well-liked Luke Pearson album series; it's a strange enough week with the newer stuff that you might keep this prove winner in mind.

MAY171933 KIRBY 100 HC LTD ED $45.95
MAY171932 KIRBY 100 SC $34.95
Here's another Kirby project, involving a number of comics pros. I want all the celebration of Kirby possible, and I'm so grateful for anyone that sees their tribute through that I won't say a negative word. Check it out at least, you can live in that Kirby headspace for two to three seconds.

*****

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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*****
*****
 
posted 1:25 am PST | Permalink
 

 
OTBP: Reverse Flâneur

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posted 1:20 am PST | Permalink
 

 
If I Were In SF, I'd Go To This

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Go, Look: Rodger Binyone

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posted 1:10 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Random Comics News Story Round-Up

image* Greg Hunter on Ghosts, Etc..

* John Siuntres talks to Patty Farmer.

* not comics: a couple of cartoonist sent me an early version of what is going to be a flood of articles about people in their 20s now that we're shifting towards a new group. I found this hilariously unconvincing in its claim that this isn't a refined form of hipsterdom, as it seems to check off every point from those old articles (even Seinfeld!), but if that model continues, thats interesting, too. One thing we know about creative twenty-somethings of the last twenty years is they migrate from gig to gig, which I think we'll continue to see happen with store ownership and even creators.

* finally: this is deeply unfortunate and I hope ends in a lot of apologies, etc.
 
posted 1:05 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Happy 47th Birthday, Tara Madison Avery!

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posted 1:00 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Happy 65th Birthday, Terry Austin!

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Happy 52nd Birthday, Chris Bachalo!

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August 22, 2017


Go, Look: Benjamin Williams

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posted 9:00 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Comics People Bringing Home The Awards And Such

* congratulations to Jeff Smith on winning the Sparky Award from the Cartoon Art Museum (not sure there's a direct link there, but scroll down to August 16). It goes to an artist that matches namesake Charles "Sparky" Schulz's "talent, innovation and humanity." Past winners include Carl Barks, Will Eisner, John Lasseter, Stan Lee and Mort Walker.

image* congratulations to Miriam Libicki on being the new writer in residence at the Vancouver Public Library and on having Toward A Hot Jew being shortlisted for a Vine Award For Jewish Literature, in non-fiction.

* congratulations to this awesome pair of folks at the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum: Wendy Pflug, on being granted tenure; Caitlin McGurk, on receiving her Award In Teaching Excellence.
 
posted 8:55 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Go, Look: MAD Staffers In Tahiti

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posted 8:00 am PST | Permalink
 

 
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