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July 21, 2018

News & Notes From The San Diego Convention Floor



* I'm still slightly traumatized from the fact that the Eisners were 16,000 hours long. This may be slow in coming.

* that said, the number of women and diversely representative winners last night was encouraging and hopeful -- and category to category the right choices. Someone will let us know if that's more winners from underrepresented groups than in the history of the show or several years of it combined, and the fact that people are thinking about that notion out loud tells you something of last night's upbeat mood.

* someone told us last night that designer Jacob Covey has never won the design category, which seems semi-nuts to me.

* wait, I'm going to have breakfast now. If I don't get back to this in a timely fashion, feel free to make the joke about me having a 17-hour breakfast or whatever.

* okay, I'm back and now I only have to worry about packing. I stay Thursday morning to Saturday evening at Comic-Con, mostly because there was a time when $370 hotel rooms were not just painful but impossible. Plus I have a wedding reception in Claremont tomorrow. It's all good, but it makes these weekend windows a bit of a chore.

* only one Artist's Edition item of news this year, but it's a show-stopper: Bernie Wrightson's Frankenstein, one of the comics-maker's career highlights and one of the great illustration projects of the second half of the 20th Century. That one's been a longtime coming, and I can't wait to see it.

* a big highlight for me on Friday was moderating Noah Van Sciver's spotlight panel, which we made a survey of his career. I thought that was the best way to find some connecting threads between works and to talk about specific visual techniques and concerns exploited by Noah. We had a decent crowd for a Friday afternoon at the Siberian end of the show, and at least 3-4 people said they had a grasp of who Noah is and why they might want to buy specific works. So mission accomplished, I guess. Anyway, I'm always honored to be asked to moderate someone's panel and I think Noah has become the interesting cartoonist at which his earlier works hinted. I hope everyone buys Blammo! #10. That comic book is really good.

* Todd Allen has the only report from the D+Q panel I've read. It focuses on John Stanley and Yoshiharu Tsuge, both coming to the publisher in major, serial-volume ways. Every book is interesting, though -- new work from Julie Doucet and a book from Kevin Huizenga, it all sounds great.

* it's great to hear about the new print iteration of TCJ, RJ Casey and Fanta-MVP Kristy Valenti supporting Gary Groth. I think Groth's interviews as a collective whole are going to be reappraised in the next 20 years as the great accomplishment they are, and anything that adds to that legacy like a new run of magazines on paper I am 100 percent interested in backing.

* speaking of Casey, he wore a one-piece jumper with fringe last night to the Eisners, which was fairly impressive. Lots of baby pictures from that guy.

* Top Shelf is working with George Takei on a graphic novel re-telling of his harrowing stories of childhood in a World War 2 interment camp.

* met a European writer-about-comics on the floor whose name is in my notes somewhere but isn't findable right this minute. "I'm so grateful when I see books being sold."

* wide agreement that the show is in its era where the energy on the floor comes from toy sales, and trying to pick how that might develop over the next few years was a lot of fun -- okay, nerdy fun but fun. Like I would imagine we'll get everyday-new exclusives in a more concentrated way very, very soon. I can imagine more book exclusives related to time and place -- I hear a lot about special book editions that never see the light of day. I can imagine some digital exclusives using virtual coin philosophies. It's going to get more complicated before it gets better.

* finally: more Moto Hagio from those rascals North and West.


photos and additional reporting by Whit Spurgeon and Chris Hatfield



posted 1:25 am PST | Permalink

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