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

July 6, 2015

Not Comics: Laura Callaghan's Dante's Inferno Series

posted 1:30 am PST | Permalink

Comics By Request: People, Projects In Need Of Funding

By Tom Spurgeon

image* Dame Darcy joins the legion of artists and comics-makers deriving part of their living from Patreon. I'm sure I'll join them someday myself.

* the Sunday Comics project continues its crowd-funder; it does seem it's lagging behind a bit but there's a ton of time left. In fact, most big projects I've followed seem to have surged late rather than early, at least the recent ones I've been following. I note that the artists are donating work for a first issue, so a model where the artists are paid after this first issue seems like it will take a ton of money. Here's the PR on that one. SundayComicsPR.pdf

* the crowdfunder for the last volume of Gunshow seems to be moving along at a solid clip.

* if you're headed out to San Diego, keep two of the traditional comics charities in mind: The Hero Initiative and the CBLDF.

* here's that Nexus-related crowdfunder that caught my eye in the heads-up stage.

* Chris Sims profiles the crowdfunder being attempted by skilled veterans John Ostrander and Tom Mandrake.

* finally, Box Brown is having a moving sale. Help out Box!
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Go, Look: Adi Granov Images Gallery

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Go, Look: An Al Jaffee-Illustrated Kids Gag Book

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* Howard Chaykin remembers Leonard Starr.

image* Richard Bruton on SAM Volume Two: Robot Hunters. John Kane on a bunch of different comics. Johanna Draper Carlson on Saved By The Bell.

* Michael Cavna and Sara Duke talk about Benjamin Franklin as a media-savvy, cartoon-conscious cultural maestro, including but not limited to the might "Join, Or Die" segemented snake cartoon that kind of brought at lot of political issues to a blunt point. Duke, from the Library Of Congress, spoke about a similar Franklin effort last week.

* praise for the new DC Comics-published portrayal of their Midnighter as single, sexually active and comfortably so.

* Mike Luckovich breaks the law.

* over in the CBR family of blogs, Greg Hatcher writes about the role of comfort-food reading, and how Nexus is one of those comics that does that job for him. I think the thrill of the familiar is a positive impulse. Getting to know a work intimately reveals secrets that a one-night stand will not.

* astute observer of mainstream comics in particular Carla Hoffman examines the newness and differentness of Marvel's line. I find these reconfigurations kind of off-putting as an older fan and not in a way that I'm turning up my nose but in that I don't pay enough attention so that all of these changes confuse me. With the necessity of revolving art teams on most title due to publishing more than 12 times a year, I can't even really follow artist/writer teams the way I used to. I'm so not the audience, though.

* finally, a not-comics item: Roman Muradov provides an illustration for the Criterion edition of Day For Night.
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Happy 39th Birthday, Andrew Fulton!

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Happy 62nd Birthday, Joe Zabel!

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Happy 68th Birthday, Katherine Collins!

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Happy 64th Birthday, Christy Marx!

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Happy 65th Birthday, John Byrne!

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July 5, 2015

Go, Look: Cuppy

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Go, Look: A Richard Corben Gallery

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Go, Look: Ariel Olivetti Images Gallery

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

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Happy 39th Birthday, Steven Goldman!

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Happy 57th Birthday, Bill Watterson!

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Happy 38th Birthday, Chris Butcher!

this photo was by Charlie Chu
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FFF Results Post #423 -- From The Racks

On Friday, CR asked readers to "Name Five Sources For Comics You've Bought Off Of A Magazine Rack." This is how they responded.



Adam Casey

1. MAD
2. New Yorker
3. Playboy
4. Cracked
5. Harper's Magazine (pictured)



Philippe LeBlanc

1. Safarir
2. Delire
3. Fluide Glaciale (pictured)
4. Lucky Peach
5. Hazzlit



Sean Kleefeld

1. Bananas (pictured)
2. MAD
3. Cracked
4. Chicago Reader
5. Nickelodeon



Oliver Ristau

1. Heavy Metal
2. Strapazin
3. Comixene
4. Slapstick
5. Warrior (pictured)



Andrew Mansell

1. National Lampoon
2. Playboy
3. Eerie
4. Walt Disney Comics Digest (pictured)
5. Planet of the Apes



Jim Wheelock

* Boy Illustrated
* Big Daddy Roth (pictured)
* Sick Magazine
* Grump Magazine
* Harpoon -- The American Humor Magazine



Michael Dooley

1. Help!, 1963
2. Evergreen Review, 1965
3. Cavalier, 1965
4. The Realist, 1972 (pictured)
5. Comixscene, 1973



Tom Spurgeon

1. Epic Illustrated
2. CARtoons (pictured)
3. The Rook
4. MAD
5. National Lampoon



Michael G. Pfefferkorn

1. Eerie
2. The Spirit (pictured)
3. Comix Book
4. Bizarre Adventures
5. Planet of the Apes

posted 12:00 am PST | Permalink

July 4, 2015

The Comics Reporter Video Parade

Gigant Teaser

Carlisle Robinson Video

Al Capp On Firing Line

A Lorenzo Mattotti Documentary From A Couple Of Years Back; Can't Understand A Word, But The Art Shown Is Stupendous

Stan Lee At This Week's Ant-Man Premiere
posted 4:00 pm PST | Permalink

CR Week In Review

imageThe top comics-related news stories from June 27 to July 3, 2015:

1. Leonard Starr passed away. One of the last great creators of lavishly illustrated soap opera comic strips, Starr had a long career in various worlds of cartooning, including working on a classic strip (Little Orphan Annie, which he did successfully from 1979 until 2000) and applying his massive skill-set to kids' animation.

2. The city of San Diego and Comic-Con International announce that their summer show will return to the city for two more years, through 2018. It wasn't unexpected, and the extra years should allow both entities to better gauge the progress San Diego will make over the next decade in expanding their convention space.

3. A conservative governor's joke about shooting a cartoonist -- made to the son of that cartoonist -- becomes part of a list of outsized behavior that may lead to that governor's impeachment.

Winners Of The Week
Thrillbent, picking up Strangers In Paradise. Lot of good weeks for a lot of people out there, actually.

Losers Of The Week
The entire comics community, for not better appreciating just how amazing the art form's regular output is right now. There may be just as many great comics as there were five to ten to twenty years ago, but there are far more high quality ones. I wonder sometimes if that gets lost in both the industry's adherence to a very specific kind of Internet discourse and the economic rewards system that still favors disposable higher-profit publications.

Quote Of The Week
"They all work for me." -- Chico Caruso


the comic image selected is from the brief but notable 1970s run of Seaboard/Atlas

posted 10:00 am PST | Permalink

Go, Look: Old Photos Of San Diego Comic-Con

posted 7:00 am PST | Permalink

You Should Read James Robinson's Response To Strong Criticism Of A Transgender Plot Point In Airboy

It's here. I'd reprint it but that always seems unfair, even in a case like this.

imageWriter James Robinson, artist Greg Hinkle and Image Comics were all criticized late last week for a storyline in Airboy that is set within the transgender community. For those of you unfamiliar, the new series presents a Pirandello-style take on the material, where the old Hillman character comes to life and interacts with the writer and artist who are characters in the comic. Robinson is portrayed as an awful person bottoming out; Hinkle is portrayed as a slightly kinder soul passively marching along with the parade of excess. My understanding is that the scene in question involved putting the Airboy character in a social milieu where he interacts with transgender people and upon realizing this reacts strongly in conservative, denigrating and unappealing fashion. The criticism is that despite none of this being treated as an endorsement, both the portrayal and the idea that the community should be recruited to play such a role in such a story in the first place add to the already significant burden that community faces.

I think this kind of push and pull is so, so necessary, and I'm grateful for it. This is even though I'm one that argues -- partly because of my position of significant privilege making it easier for me to do so -- that there's a place in the world for portrayals and narratives and representations in art that are deeply hurtful and/or plugged into dire social consequences. That is never a roadblock to criticism, which I adore. A loud reaction to art and call for rejection and change, that's valuable speech that can be learned from just as the art in question may have something to say. I get a little uncomfortable when these stories boil down to our appraisal of someone's sincerity, perhaps because I'm completely unable to make that call, but getting that reaction out there? Getting to hear from a James Robinson on an issue of such delicacy? Letting people know that both disagree and, perhaps most importantly, that never thought about it, that portrayal even in satire is an issue of crucial urgency for many groups? That only adds to our ability to be human.
posted 6:00 am PST | Permalink

Go, Look: Vintage RBCC Covers And Pages

posted 3:20 am PST | Permalink

OTBP: Thinger Dingers

posted 3:10 am PST | Permalink

Go, Look: Igor Kordey Images Gallery

posted 3:00 am PST | Permalink

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