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

November 22, 2011

Forsythe, Yang, Pham, McDonnell Make NYT Kids Book List


It's not always a comics-maker soaked list, but this year seems to be an exception. Hybrid book maker Brian Selznick and cartoonist/poet Shel Silverstein also made the list, which is accompanied by an illustration by RO Blechman.
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Go, Look: KC Carlson Remembers Les Daniels

thx, Chris Pitzer
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Bundled, Tossed, Untied And Stacked


By Tom Spurgeon


* this new Study Group Magazine looks like it could be awfully good. I'm looking forward to the Eleanor Davis interview in particular.

image* Scott Bukatman apparently has a book coming out next Spring on Winsor McCay's work. That should be good.

* Karl Stevens has a Kickstarter page up for his next comic, Imitating Life. The premiums on that one seem established at really affordable levels. I wonder if there's an established difference in the minds of Kickstarter users between aiming at a bunch of smaller donations or a few bigger ones? It wouldn't surprise me if someone out there was making that distinction, although I haven't seen it in play yet. Anyway, I liked Stevens' last book, and would like to see the next one.

* John Bergin has up for sale a comic he did with Jay O'Barr for a long-ago issue of Caliber Presents.

* to no one's surprise giving the very revealing teaser image, Image will be publishing a collection of Brandon Graham's King City comic series. It will be the same size as the comic, which was more reminiscent of the 1980s magazine format than a typical comic. I greatly enjoyed that series.

* there were more changes at Marvel last week, including additional drops of slower-selling titles like Black Panther: The Most Dangerous Man Alive. Another title, PunisherMAX, is being allowed to conclude. Since the issue number on which it's going to be canceled is a very high one, I would assume that the Black Panther title took over some other comic book's numbering (probably Daredevil), a move that hasn't really worked when Marvel's done it but is very old-school 1960s if you think about it. More of Marvel's better comic book series over the last decade or so have been this kind of mid-list title, which makes it that much more alarming for them to be pruning like mad in a year when they had three $100-million grossing movies out. It still makes me wonder what a post-Avengers movie Marvel publishing program might look like, or what the line five years from now will be like if they trim all the titles where companies like that tend to develop talent.

* here's some good news: Signe Wilkinson has a new strip coming out. My guess is that it's going to be local to her Philadelphia gig, a Sunday-only kind of thing, but I could be wrong.

* Ryan North is among those that will be working on the Adventure Time comic book adaptation. There are a couple of other talented people working on it as well, but I can't make out from the article what one of them will be doing, so I gave up. That comic could do very well.

* Chris Giarrusso and Brad Guigar are collaborating on what may be this week's best idea: a webcomic in affiliation with the Emerald City Comic Con, that will be posted on that show's web site. That show has a real chance of being the webcomic/comics industry crossover show, if you stop and think about it. Not that you couldn't use a webcomic just to throw some attention on a show devoted exclusively to paper. I'll shut up now.

* I'm not sure that I all the way knew that First Second will be doing a collection of Derek Kirk Kim and Les McClaine's Tune in 2012.

* here's the Graphicly blog post on exactly what works from Top Shelf will be available on what bookstore-affiliated reader for the holiday season. I like a lot of those books.

* finally, Domino Books has announced pre-orders for Clara Bessijelle's Face Man, which will make a physical debut at the forthcoming Brooklyn Graphics And Comics Fest.



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Go, Read: Tom Conroy On Joel Beck

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Your Danish Cartoons Hangover Update

* NPR profiles David Coleman Headley in advance of the documentary A Perfect Terrorist, debuting tonight. Headley was brought to trial on charges related to planned terrorist acts against the newspaper Jyllands-Posten, and eventually turned evidence. It turned out that he had a deeper and much more insidious involvement in planning the attacks on Mumbai. His testimony to officials in the U.S. and in India has had geopolitical implications.

* this article about a recent anti-Israel cartoon that suggests that that country's government would wish to bomb a UN office because of their recognition of a Palestinian state cites the Danish Cartoons Controversy as sort of a baseline of criticized behavior over such an event. It's kind of a "I can't believe you're reacting like they reacted" thing, which isn't exactly clear of unpleasant connotations.

* here's something I didn't know: the laws being used to prosecute three men in Norway for plotting against the Jylland-Posten newspaper and the cartoonist Kurt Westergaard have to include an international conspiracy in order to be effective. It really seems like the prosecution strategy might be really strained in this trial -- that they're going for a target with a great amount of difficulty rather than a more achievable one. Very risky.
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Go, Look: Two Early Graham Ingels Stories

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Gerald Scarfe Goes One Up On Every Other Cartoonist

At least in terms of little-kid cool: he just had a dinosaur named after him. The honor fell to Scarfe because of his infamous portrayal of Margaret Thatcher as a pterodactyl.
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Go, Look: Russ Heath Sgt. Rock Pages

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Go, Look: A Barbie And Ken Story

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Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* as we mentioned yesterday morning and as was guaranteed by Michigan sentencing guidelines, the former prominent retailer Michael George received a life sentence for the first degree murder part of his recent, coming-after-a-convoluted-history conviction for the 1990 killing of his then-wife Barbara. George proclaimed his innocence and plans to appeal; it always confuses me a bit when someone that declined to testify speaks out on his own behalf at some later date, I guess because there's an element of "they didn't hear me" to such protestations.

image* Jason Leivian playtests that incredibly cool-looking game to which Mat Brinkman contributed.

* Craig Fischer writes about how Jack Kirby used various focus-related techniques in his work. Unfortunately, he uses watermarked imagery where it isn't really necessary, and I'm not sure why Tim and Dan have let that stay up. It's really ugly and distracting. I guess that sort of makes a different point about focus.

* this move by Image Comics to have their own convention in one of the lighter months on the convention schedule makes perfect sense to me. In fact, it could be seen simply as an extension of what publishers like D+Q and Fantagraphics have done with opening their own retail establishments in recent years.

* it is going to be very difficult to come within a country mile of this Alvin Schwartz obituary at Sequential. I'm not being passively competitive, either. I won't come close to matching that one.

* Richard Bruton on The Klondike.

* someone nice from Expanded Books talks to Jeff Smith. Albert Ching talks to Stuart Immonen. Tim O'Shea talks to Shannon Wheeler. Brigid Alverson talks to Colleen Doran. Kiel Phegley talks to Scott Lobdell.

* speaking of interviews, here's one from a few years ago with Grant Morrison. It's about the then-current We3. That one's probably going to grow in reputation over the years, especially as a rare stand-alone work during an extended period where Morrison worked on material that was very present in the flow of ongoing serial comic books.

* I'm always very humbled by comics' giving heart. Comics people aren't necessarily loaded with cash or all that likely to break into the cocktails and dinner circuits, but they may give more to specific charitable causes in terms of sheer sweat and muscle and actual creation than any other creative community.

* finally, Dustin Harbin provides some video footage of Zak Sally's magical press.
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Happy 71st Birthday, Roy Thomas!

posted 10:00 am PST | Permalink

Happy 61st Birthday, David Wenzel!

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Happy 55th Birthday, Ron Randall!

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Happy 37th Birthday, Ethan Persoff!

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Happy 71st Birthday, Terry Gilliam!

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