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

November 12, 2010

Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* the photos taken by Todd Klein at Neil Gaiman's 50th birthday party look quite lovely. Also: please feel better, Scott McCloud.

* not comics: Stan Lee will receive a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame in early January.

image* Sean Phillips' version of the Avengers for a Hero Initiative-related project is a lot of fun, and I think I'd say that if he weren't doing a Roy Thomas-type line-up as opposed to one of the newer groupings. I still think someone could revive that Vision character; that has to be the least-utilized character relative to his one-time popularity of all the characters in Marvel's entire stable. Vision phasing through someone's body was the "snikt" of the first half of the 1970s.

* more on that unfortunate dating/context thing by Jim Davis and Garfield.

* not comics: Tim Hodler unpacks the comics-related resume of the late Dino De Laurentiis.

* David Brothers breaks down the story of writer J. Michael Straczynski leaving his ongoing series gigs at DC for a stand-alone OGN sequel to his Superman: Earth One in light of that writer's general lateness issues. I learned a lot in that piece.

* speaking of JMS' departure, some folks picked up on an idea I expressed yesterday that that news and the way the announcement came out struck me as a vote of no confidence in serial comics. A few agreed, a few did not. I stand by my reasoning: a prominent writer leaving two high-profile serial comics gigs and stating "these other kinds of comics over there, they're the future" on his way out the door, that's not a good day for serial comics. That certainly does not mean it represents some sort of crippling blow to a kind of comics publishing I adore. That would be nuts. Nor is it a sign of things to come: JMS isn't a typical comics professional. I just thought that the action and how it was presented constituted a weird and potentially troubling message to put out there, especially in tenuous times.

image* someone asked me yesterday if Bill Mauldin is the only cartoonist ever to make the cover of Sports Illustrated. My hunch is that this is indeed the case, even though they once profiled Charles Schulz at length. Special middle-of-the-century cultural icon props to Mr. Mauldin for the cigarette.

* Abhay Khosla discusses a whole mess of books.

* Dirk Deppey explains the conventional wisdom as to why some comics benefit from a movie/TV series and some don't: there needs to be a convenient and easy-to-understand jumping-on point. I think a discrete unit also helps, so it will be interesting to see how the Walking Dead comics due in that regard.

* no one ever mentions Neil The Horse on these comics-as-TV-shows lists. I would watch the crap out of a Neil The Horse TV show. You could run it right after that Glee.

* the artist, cartoonist and illustrator Paul Pope analyzes some work by Paul Rivoche on Mister X.

* I suspect that he's doing it to get a jump on the series of books he does that include such commentary in addition to giving his site some additional focus, but Richard Thompson's annotated versions of his Cul De Sac are a blast.

* not comics: Warren Ellis talks tools. I second his recommendation of Dropbox, or something similar if you can find something similar that you like better. Just having your words away from the items of your writing life that can have water thrown on them is very much a relief.

* finally, looks like I jumped the gun on that Gilbert Hernandez OGN cover.
posted 2:00 am PST | Permalink

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