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

May 18, 2012

A Second Group Of Random Links On A Friday Morning

There seem to be an inordinate number of intriguing posts for a Friday morning. Let's jump back into the fray.

* David Chelsea offers Alison Bechdel help on her perspective drawing.

image* Tom DeHaven addresses this year's CCS graduating class. The career advice is pretty fascinating considering he's addressing members of a generation without much of an industry structure to dictate such things to them.

* David Glanzer talks about WonderCon. The Moscone Center people apparently still haven't decided to give the convention dates in advance of six months, which sounds insane to me.

* I nearly missed a three-part interview with Image's Eric Stephenson here, here and here. That piece's likely takeaway will be the 70K sales figure on Saga, but I found it interesting for some of the wonkier reasons. For instance, I guess there's abuse in the Final Order Cutoff system that leaves Image exposed to routinely under-printing books. That sounds eminently fixable. It also sounds like one of those things comics keeps broke for years for no particular reason. Also -- and this is no surprise -- the way that numbers are reported even from a publisher's vantage point makes no sense at all. I'm not sure if it's anything other than a collective lack of will that's keeping us from have accurate numbers reported on a routine basis at this point. Maybe there should be a push for this? Can anyone point out to me if there's anyone specifically still resistant to non-idiotic numbers? Is DC still the fly in the ointment it once was? Stephenson also offers up a great Borders anecdote and a funny, off-hand snapshot of Marvel's broken books policy.

* did you know there will be a live-streaming web cast of that Comics: Philosophy and Practice event?

* Dan DiDio talks to the Guardian about DC's More Watchmen initiative. It's a compelling piece if you like tracking how fans and professionals and industry players orient themselves to pop culture material and the sometimes stifling context of their creation. I'm grateful that DiDio expresses some human sympathy for Moore's position -- even if practiced, simply recognizing the guy might have good reason to be pissed is a far cry better than the ridiculous anger and dismissiveness some fans and pros have hurled at Moore. I'm still not down with the "we had to continue saving comics" and "we're taking a big risk here" narratives. Further, implying that Before Watchmen was conceived of after the success of the New 52 books seems unfair to me, and slightly weird, and sort of funny given how much they tried to stretch the narrative on the relaunch. Also, I'm not sure Dan DiDio all the way knows what "shameless" means -- I'm uncertain how a claim of high quality counters a claim of shamelessness.

* those books sound really dull, by the way. A standard of "hey, there's some decent work here" shouldn't be enough for a project that didn't have to exist.

* cheapest price for Spain Rodriguez's My True Story at $42.68. Cheapest price for Watchmen: $3.82. Just sayin'.

* I have zero interest in what female character Marvel decides to put into its next movie -- my vote is Jim Shooter and JRJR's Debbie "The Duck" Fix -- but I appreciate ComicsAlliance listing creators with every character in their article on that apparently deeply compelling issue. I had no idea that Bill Everett was partially responsible for Moondragon.

* finally, Heidi MacDonald has posted a really good Comic-Con link round-up (with a terrible title) here. I think she's right that the hassles Comic-Con are experiencing right now -- and that people are experiencing with Comic-Con -- are mostly reflective of an adjustment period as organizers figure out how best to exploit the fact that they're in the same space with the same-sized show for a while. I urge them to be super-clear about the entire process for next year's show, front to back, so that no one feels disappointed as to how something gets presented to them. Also: Gilbert Shelton is attending this year's con. Whoa. Shelton is a pantheon-level cartoonist and I'm not aware of him ever showing up at a comics show I planned on attending. I may grab a tent and one-man Twilight-line that spotlight panel.
posted 6:00 am PST | Permalink

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