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

July 13, 2010

Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* leave it to Comics Comics to come up with the most interesting Harvey Pekar-related link.

image* apparently the way to get me to read a comics-related article in German is to put a picture of a Shane Simmons comic in it. Turns out that it's a very interesting article with one of Germany's most important retailers, Uli Profrock, who also translates work like Simmons' into German.

* a comics fan and occasional reviewer breaks down the Blackest Night comics into a readable order if you only include certain series. When I was a kid it didn't get much more complicated than figuring out in which annual Zatanna was going to appear next.

* I got lost in Philly once. My rule for accuracy in comic book settings is that the creators should try as hard as the writers and fact-checkers on Frasier did when it came to using Seattle street names. In other words, any location-setting should be arguably possible or they should rattle off enough names that sound familiar I stop caring. But if you're going to make an event out of going to Philadelphia, they're going to pay attention in Philadelphia.

* the real thing that jumps out at me in that post is how boring that Superman in Philly comic book sounds. I sympathize: Superman is an old character and it doesn't help that they've aged him at an increased rate by putting him in so many comics the last 20 years. I don't know that I could come up with anything new to say about the character -- I'd probably shrink him and have him race Mr. Mxyztplk across the world on sentient hotdog motorcycles, or have him go on a reality show run by Lex Luthor wearing a blonde wig -- but if you're not bringing in new readers (and those kinds of comics really aren't) then the readers that remain are going to be really damn bored by most pedestrian, casual fan friendly plots, even solid, TV-ready ones.

* it's always fun to read an Alan Moore interview.

* Marvel offers another one of those book swaps that I maybe don't fully understand and that seems to enrage people who like DC Comics. I think the only reason I want to understand them is that it enrages people, and I could use some more of that on my side. If I had to guess, I'd say the previous offer was saying "Our competitor sold you a bunch of crappy comics; send us some back for some real comics" and that this one says "Since Deadpool is wacky we can make a joke at our own expense; send us some of our own crappy-selling comics for copies of this special Deadpool." Me, I never wanted to blow up the entire Direct Market and go back to spinner racks more in my life.

* not comics: Barnes & Noble enacts poison pill measures to stop a hostile takeover.

* finally, these panels and pages from a Lorenzo Mattotti soccer comic sure are pretty; they've been almost everywhere during the World Cup, but the FPI scans are as good as I've seen.
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