As you can tell from Adair's article, there were several comics people on hand, certainly enough for a comics fan to spend those days in a graphic novel wallow. It still isn't near what we thought it might become for comics 11, 12, 13 years ago. As long as comics remains a strong category for bookstores, it's going to have a chance to be a solid comics show, focused on reading and the act of selling to readers as opposed to artistic issues or spending time in the shared nerd culture that reaches across media.
But man, I didn't hear a peep from anyone excited to go, have heard in bare minimum fashion from people that went, and certainly this provided a sharp contrast to those once-upon-a-time hopes and what a huge deal TCAF has become. The fact that it's in Chicago after several years of trying to develop a recurring Springtime in New York feel with all the morning shows and late night shows stuffed with prose authors, indicates there's still some focus left to come.
Here. Comics has a version of this, in that it tends to see being paid for comics to the point it can be a primary profession as a key value, with all sorts of distortions and dysfunction spinning off from that central idea.. It's a myth from which we could back away a bit, I think, in the course of improving things for artists and getting more quality art out there.
* here's some more news about Chinese versions of DC big three characters Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman. I don't have any dark, Trump-like thoughts on this: I think these are properties and it's probably smart to have properties directly attuned to the world's great markets. I have almost no interest in this in a story sense, though. I do sort of wonder if these are the kinds of characters will be killed five years from now in service to propping up the big-bad in a crossover mini-series.
* so I guess there's a new Wasp character. The Wasp is probably the only female Marvel character that really works in a distinctive way in the 1960s Marvel comics, although I have a soft space for Kooky Quartet-era Scarlet Witch. It's weird to read the Jarvis character yelling at people.\\
Ran across two emotionally-driven convention reports within ten minutes of one another: Dustin Harbin on TCAF 2016; Erik Nebel on the just-completed Linework NW. The Harbin piece might of slightly greater interest because Harbin has written about shows before and the contrast between those pieces and this one seems pretty strong. They're both pretty great in similar ways, though.
One reason it becomes compulsive for some folks to want all of the things about comics to stop being harmful immediately is because there are so many things that are great about working in comics, or being a close observer, or being a devoted and focused reader. There's no reason everything couldn't be that much better.
That's a brutal assessment of DiDio's career-to-date. I don't understand corporate culture, but as an observer of comics more generally it has always seemed to me that a whole lot of people could be held more accountable for the performance of their companies, and for the culture they foster in which others have to operate. (My performance since mid-2014 hasn't been great, either, but I own the joint.) It's not like with DC I can point to a lot of awesome publishing positives there, more like a scattering of decent-selling series, but maybe a few more will come to mind when I re-read Abhay's article. I'm happy to give space here and if it's of a high quality pay for the rights to anyone who would like to write a rousing, thorough defense of the arguments presented in that article; that would be interesting to read.
As far as DiDio goes, I've always thought if his job wasn't even close to being in danger in May 2008 when the first issue of the we-are-all-in Final Crisis somehow wasn't that month's #1 comic, he was going to be a really difficult fire. The nature of the success enjoyed by the New 52 publishing initiative seemed then and seems now like the kind of thing that keeps people in jobs, too, despite any number of caveats. People still remember the publicity-generating editorial tweaks and the lines outside of the NYC comic shops with that one. They don't remember it was a move that was self-correcting a couple of years of near free-fall, that Bob Wayne secured a lot of the retailer confidence involved, that the sales bumps enjoyed on certain books went away quickly, that the line once again became bottom heavy even more quickly than that, and that at best three or four characters were developed in an interesting way that might have other-media payoffs.
Anyway, that's a fun article; you should read it if you're a deep-diver when it comes to comic-book industry watching or if you ever want to work here. I've benefited greatly by comics' low standards, but we're at a point that's not good enough anymore -- doubly, triply, infinitely, finally so for the people whose performances have a drastic impact on a significant number of people's lives.
* video parade extra: not sure I can embed this video tour of Forbidden Planet NYC without it automatically popping up, so I'll direct you there in this post via the URL. That's a solid shop to shop in, I always buy something when I drop in. Most of what I look at is in the last 11 seconds, of course. One more time: that pops up really loud for me.
Michael Cavna gathers together various major political cartoonists' depictions of Donald Trump. There's some interesting stuff in there about how a few of them choose to do his mouth, believe it or not. A couple of the cartoons used made me laugh.
If Mr. Trump wins -- and he has a good chance of winning -- you're going to see the old adage that even the most brutally effective satire doesn't work anymore get a sound workout.