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

June 3, 2009

Bundled, Tossed, Untied and Stacked


By Tom Spurgeon

* Jeff Smith and Cartoon Books are doing a special hardcover edition of the first RASL book.

* IDW has entered into an agreement with the Robert Bloch estate to do a variety of projects using the late author's work as a springboard.

* there are so many comics coming out I totally missed word of the Richard Sala effort through First Second pictured above until I was sent an advance copy. It's super, super, super pretty.

image* as noted in a great catch by Rodrigo Baeza, the long-running strip reprint magazine Comics Revue is going bi-monthly to better hit the Diamond sales minimums.

* the writer John Jakala notes the hard times and struggles faced by Steve Rude in getting his self-publishing enterprise off of the ground, and its effective termination in favor of the artist's renewed emphasis on painting with comics a less significant part of the professional mix. That's too bad. Comics is a super-tricky market, and there's some evidence that the audience for the Rude line's flagship title Nexus had shrunk in the 1990s independent of all the market's complications. I like the title, and I've always liked Rude's comics work, so I feel sad that however Rude was able to approach the comics market this time didn't work out.

* Dark Horse is publishing Jane Yolen's first graphic novel.

* I like the idea of a character named Magog, because it practically guarantees that a character called Gog had something to do with his secret origin and I called dogs "gogs" until I was like six.

* that last one sure was funny when I wrote it at 3 AM last Thursday, high on powdered donuts and Mountain Dew.

* the comics business news and analysis site provides a straight-up preview of this Fall's Masterpiece Comics, from R. Sikoryak through Drawn and Quarterly.

* speaking of comics and comics-related book that I didn't know were coming out -- and I was somewhere in this post before now -- reviewers were sent copies of that 40 Years of Comic-Con book last week. They really need to promote this with a poster of that Sergio Aragones cover and they should make it available as a desktop background image immediately. Okay, they really don't need to do those things; I just really like the cover. Plus it led me to discover the Caveman Robot blog.

* finally, the great big publisher Marvel is apparently going to bring back the original Human Torch. I seem to remember the original Human Torch poking around one of the Avengers teams in the 1990s and I think the character's dead body was part of a recent Captain America plotline. That's one way that superheroes are better than movie stars, by the way: you never see a movie about Jimmy Stewart's corpse. There haven't been good comics about a flying on-fire guy since those underrated Kirby Human Torch comics in the 1960s.

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