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
















August 20, 2014


Go, Look: Adventure Comics #291

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This Isn't A Library: New And 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.

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JUN141280 SISTERS GN $10.99
JUN141281 SISTERS HC GN $24.99
Behold the summer juggernaut we've all ben waiting for, although my guess is that this is really an early Fall release, as momentum should take Raina Telgemeier's work -- this time more closely affiliated with her breakout hit Smile than follow-up Drama could be -- all the the way through Christmas with sales punch. The first printing on this was bigger than all but a handful of North American superhero comic books since 2000. Telgemeier is a big star with her readers, and one thing she does as well as any cartoonist working is track the emotional state of her characters as they move through the narrative. I would assume a box set with Smile is coming soon, if not immediately, and she has a book tour planned.

imageJUN140463 FADE OUT #1 (MR) $3.50
JUN140145 MULTIVERSITY #1 $4.99
JUN140015 BPRD HELL ON EARTH #122 $3.50
JUN140010 DARK HORSE PRESENTS 2014 #1 $4.99
JUN140339 LITTLE NEMO RETURN TO SLUMBERLAND #1 $3.99
JUN140581 SUPREME BLUE ROSE #2 (MR) $2.99
JUN140584 TREES #4 (MR) $2.99
JUN140619 DAREDEVIL #7 SIN $3.99
JUN140698 MAGNETO #8 $3.99
JUN140614 ORIGINAL SINS #5 $3.99
JUN148174 SOUTHERN BASTARDS #1 3RD PTG (MR) $3.50
The juggernaut here is the first issue of the Grant Morrison written and coordinated multiple-universe series Multiversity for DC Comics, a company that can always use the energy and conviction that Morrison brings to such project. I'm choosing to spotlight the cover to the latest Ed Brubaker/Sean Phillips comic book The Fade Out, because that team may be the only creative force in the big-company end of comics more reliable than Morrison. This is post-war Hollywood noir, and comes right on the heels of their final issue of Fatale. A Mignola-verse book comes out this week -- they come out almost every week -- while Dark Horse is also presenting the latest iteration of its anthology title, Dark Horse Presents. That's a smaller book and a smaller price point than the last volume. The Little Nemo is Eric Shanower so I'll definitely look at that. That's two comic books from Warren Ellis next; I'd love to know the last time that happened. Daredevil and Magneto are solid mid-list performers for the House Of Ideas, while Original Sins is the latest "event" series, this time focused on messing with character origins a bit. Or at least that's my impression; I've only seen the advertisements. You know it's sort of fun to read those event series if you're not reading a bunch of mainstream comics just to sort of catch up with the general way they're being done. Southern Bastards looks like a legitimate hit with a third printing arriving this quickly.

JUN141526 CHI SWEET HOME GN VOL 11 $13.95
JUN141562 DOROHEDORO GN VOL 13 (MR) $12.99
MAY141474 VINLAND SAGA GN VOL 04 $19.99
Three solid series of mainstream-oriented manga of different types. I'm only following these in chunks and gups according to when they become available, but the price point is always pretty reasonable on these things right off of the rack first day.

MAY141606 FIRST KINGDOM HC VOL 05 (MR) $19.99
I'm happy to see this Jack Katz work slip back into print and I think there's an audience of sci-fi readers for this material, if only a modest one. I love the magazine, but I'd certainly take a look at this presentation.

MAR140977 KILLER OMNIBUS TP VOL 02 (MR) $24.99
This is a high-end spy/mercenary adventure serial I've enjoyed when it's cross my desk. Very stylish-looking.

JUL141214 PEANUTS WAITING FOR GREAT PUMPKIN HC $9.99
This is another Peanuts gift book, which may or may not appeal in DM shops for a crowd that might be more oriented towards the complete collection. Still, it's hard to go wrong with Schulz.

JUN141261 ALANS WAR GN $24.00
JUN141448 SHARK KING TP $4.99
JUN141265 ODD DUCK GN $15.99
JUN141212 TALES DESIGNED TO THRIZZLE TP VOL 01 $22.99
There are a number of pretty good books coming back to market; this is a group of four, completely unaffiliated with each other, that jumped out at me. My favorites were the second and the fourth. You won't find a prettier comic than that Shark King book, while the Kupperman I thought was really strong across the board.

MAY141480 ZAYA HC (MR) $29.99
This is a pairing of JD Morvan and the illustrator Huang-Jei Wei, continuing a run of Morvan's collaborative works to the market. It's a mostly spy-oriented science fiction work and it looks very, very pretty.

MAY141408 HIP HOP FAMILY TREE GN VOL 01 (NEW PTG) $27.99
MAY141401 HIP HOP FAMILY TREE GN VOL 02 $27.99
This is Ed Piskor's new work and a new printing of the previous volume. I think it's safe to call this book a legitimate alt-comics hit, and while it's not operating in the same sales stratosphere as the book at the top of this post, I hear it's doing very well. This is also a book likely to be paired together for gift-giving. I like cultural history, the more idiosyncratic the better -- it doesn't any more personalized than Piskor's mix of documentation and junky comic art flourishes. The great thing if you lived through this time period is to test your memory in a timeline fashion; I remember some of these things, but never close to the right order.

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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: Furniture Porn

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Forthcoming Comics-Related Events, Through September 2014

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*****

August 22
* If I Were In Brooklyn, I'd Go To This

August 23
* If I Were In New Jersey, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Chimacum, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Mt Prospect, I'd Go To This

August 26
* If I Were In New York, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This

August 27
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In New York, I'd Go To This

August 29
* If I Were In Decatur, I'd Go To This

August 30
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In London, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Decatur, I'd Go To This

August 31
* If I Were In Decatur, I'd Go To This

*****

September 3
* If I Were In Toronto, I'd Go To This
* If I Were Near A Computer, I'd Go To This

September 4
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This

September 5
* If I Were In Baltimore, I'd Go To This (Baltimore Comic-Con)
* If I Were In Helsinki, I'd Go To This (Helsinki Comics Festival)

September 6
* If I Were In Baltimore, I'd Go To This (Baltimore Comic-Con)
* If I Were In Helsinki, I'd Go To This (Helsinki Comics Festival)
* If I Were In Brooklyn, I'd Go To This (Paper Jam Small Press Festival 2)

September 7
* If I Were In Baltimore, I'd Go To This (Baltimore Comic-Con)
* If I Were In Helsinki, I'd Go To This (Helsinki Comics Festival)

September 8
* If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This

September 12
* If I Were In Baltimore, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Hawaii, I'd Go To This (HawaiiCon)
* If I Were In Montreal, I'd Go To This (Montreal Comiccon)
* If I Were In College Park, I'd Go To This

September 13
* If I Were In Rockville, I'd Go To This (SPX)
* If I Were In Hawaii, I'd Go To This (HawaiiCon)
* If I Were In Montreal, I'd Go To This (Montreal Comiccon)
* If I Were In London, I'd Go To This

September 14
* If I Were In Rockville, I'd Go To This (SPX)
* If I Were In Hawaii, I'd Go To This (HawaiiCon)
* If I Were In Montreal, I'd Go To This (Montreal Comiccon)

September 15
* If I Were In Seattle, I'd Go To This
* If I Were Near Harvard, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Charlottesville, I'd Go To This

September 16
* If I Were In Philadelphia, I'd Go To This

September 19
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Brooklyn, I'd Go To This

September 20
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This (Rose City)
* If I Were In Asheville, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Brooklyn, I'd Go To This

September 21
* If I Were In Portland, I'd Go To This (Rose City)
* If I Were In Brooklyn, I'd Go To This

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

September 24
* If I Were In Pittsburgh, I'd Go To This

September 25
* If I Were In Kenosha, I'd Go To This

September 26
* If I Were In Kenosha, I'd Go To This

September 27
* If I Were In Long Beach, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Columbus, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Kenosha, I'd Go To This

September 28
* If I Were In Long Beach, I'd Go To This
* If I Were In Chicago, I'd Go To This

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Ongoing
* Pretty In Ink: The Trina Robbins Collection, Cartoon Art Museum (Through August 24)

* Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Cartoon Art Museum (Through September 14)

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This post is designed to list events through the month after this one, including ongoing exhibits. If you don't see your event above, perhaps check out the future listings here. If it's not listed anywhere,

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posted 1:15 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Go, Look: The Wyoming Kid

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posted 1:10 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* you don't see too many people going after Tom Toles, but Tim Cavanaugh engages the Washington Post cartoonist with serious intent. I think Toles is consistently very good, but that's not a strong cartoon from him.

image* Kiel Phegley talks to Mark Millar and John Romita, Jr. Nathan Reese talks to Ed Brubaker. Rob Clough profiles Aaron Lange.

* not comics: I sort of enjoyed the violence in this fan video, but I saw it a week ago before violence took over the whole world, so be careful.

* late 1970s Gary Panter.

* John Kane on a bunch of different comics. Paul O'Brien on Moon Knight Vol. 1. Todd Klein on GI Zombie #1. Andy Oliver on Graveyard Orbit #1. Robert Kirby on Unlovable Vol. 3. Rob Clough on The Hic & Hoc Illustrated Journal Of Humour Vol. 2, Crime World and some comics by Rob Jackson. Sean Gaffney on Oh My Goddess! Vol. 46.

* finally, this Joe McCulloch forthcoming comics article from last week featured a fun mini-essay on the comics of Ryoichi Ikegami.
 
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Happy 56th Birthday, Daniel Torres!

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Happy 38th Birthday, Rina Ayuyang!

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Happy 42nd Birthday, Sean Kleefeld!

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August 19, 2014


Go, Look: Several Pages Of Derek Ballard Comics

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Part 1; Part 2
 
posted 8:30 pm PST | Permalink
 

 
Go, Read: Best American Comics Selection Canadian Royalty

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it's by Michael DeForge
 
posted 10:30 am PST | Permalink
 

 
Go, Read: Frank Miller 20 Questions At Playboy

Here. It's his answer to #19 that will likely set off article and social media kvetching interest, mostly because that's the only reaction anyone has to anything anymore but partly because his answer there is... well... let's say colorful.

Miller was not the humongous figure for me in the 1980s that he was for most of my same-age peers that read comics, although I enjoy pretty much all of his major runs within the corporate superhero companies and there sure were a lot of them.
 
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Go, Look: You Might As Well Live

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Go, Read: Anne Ishii Interviews Annie Koyama

Here. I'm happier just knowing these two people got to talk to one another. Bonus: the interview is funny and encouraging.
 
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Go, Look: How I Got My Medical Marijuana License

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By Request Extra: Paper Rocket Launches Fall Campaign; Inaugurates A New "Split The Tip" Policy

Robyn Chapman wrote in yesterday afternoon with news of this crowd-funding campaign, for the Fall comics from her Paper Rocket Minicomics.

She mentioned in the note something that's in the campaign presentation, that she would splitting any extra money over the pre-order cost with the artists involved, which seems to me an interesting way to approach what she forthrightly calls a pre-order effort. She also puts paying the artists as first priority with the fundraiser.
 
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Go, Look: Fantasy Management

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Go, Read: Profile Of Frank Miller In New York Times; Sunday Book Review On Jules Feiffer's Latest

The Miller is here. The Feiffer is here. Neither one is particularly insightful, although together they provide one of those step-back moment were you think, with amazement, "These kinds of profiles and review are routine now." The Feiffer one might surprise for the certainty of its praise, as advance word on Kill My Mother has been all over the place. It's hard for me to imagine the new Sin City movie doing well, but the Turtles surprised on their first weekend so who knows? I think there's a significant reservoir of goodwill waiting for Miller within comics, but it may be a while yet before the dam is removed.
 
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Go, Look: Missy Kulik

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Bundled Extra: Conundrum Press Announces Katherine Verhoeven's Towerkind For A TCAF 2015 Debut

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Making yet another late-summer publishing announcement, Conundrum Press yesterday announced via social media and a press release that they had acquired world rights to Towerkind, by Katherine Verhoeven. They describe the work, a newly-named Ignatz nominee in its mini-comic iteration as follows:
"Conundrum Press is delighted to announce the signing of world rights to Towerkind by Katherine Verhoeven. Towerkind is an oblique end-of-the-world story seen through the eyes of a diverse group of children in Toronto’s St James Town, a neighbourhood of densely populated high rise apartments. The kids in this “towerhood” become aware of an impending catastrophe through a number of supernatural abilities. Super strong Ty is a self-proclaimed monarch, and in his frustrated rage bullies the other kids into building a castle for him out of scrap wood and boxes. Among others, Mackenzie uses her death magic to meddle, and language savant Mose would prefer to be left alone. Something is revealing itself through cracks and crevices, and through the children in the neighbourhood."
Conundrum promises at TCAF 2015 debut.

The book should be around 160 pages -- I believe that's the length of the story so you'd have that plus some extras -- and you can buy individual issues in the earlier iteration here. The cartoonist commented on the news here.
 
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If I Were In Brooklyn, 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: More Herb Trimpe Hulk Splash Pages

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* you can submit to the Cartoonists Of Color database here.

image* Gabriel Winslow-Yost on a pair of translated war comics by Jacques Tardi. (thanks, Greg Kelly) Andrew Weiss on Radio Boy. Todd Klein on Detective Comics Annual #3 and Superman #33.

* Chris Sims writes about the Legion Of Super-Heroes property. It's kind of baffling that that one can't be made to work somehow. I wonder if it hasn't been overthought a bit. I imagine it also suffers from a very popular late 1970s run casting a shadow going forward for the next 35 years. With several thousand readers making the difference between a hit and a canceled book, it has to be tempting to return to that strongest iteration.

* did Phoebe come back?

* Alan Gardner reminds that Hilary Price recently visited the current dean of American newspaper cartooning, Mort Walker.

* Hannah Means-Shannon talks to David Mack and Bill Sienkiewicz. Dan Greenfield talks to Ed Piskor. Some nice person at the Yorkshire Evening Post profiles Lisa Wood. Jonathan Bell talks to KAL. Julie Kahn talks to Ed Chavez. Jason Wilkins talks to Ryan Burton.

* I liked this strip by Evan Dorkin.

* finally, I'm putting word of this Wonder Woman podcast here so I will remember to go back and listen to it when I have the time.
 
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Happy 37th Birthday, Josh Cotter!

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