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December 19, 2007

Random Comics News Story Round-Up

* must-read post: Jeannie Schulz on Schulz and Peanuts

* the man behind the man known as Fletcher Hanks, Paul Karasik, is offering his Fantomah and Stardust t-shirts at $12 a pop, which sounds like a pretty good last-minute gift to me. He also report that Mr. Hanks will be the cover artist on the next Comics Journal, which I did not know. Chris Butcher has some last-minute gift ideas. Original art makes a pretty good late gift because you can use the page from the comic it's from to present the gift to your gift recipient. Any and all late adds to my own Christmas gift are getting this book.

* the cartoonist Dash Shaw asks Marvel, DC, Tokyopop and all such companies to consider his plan for Company-Sponsored Doujinshi.

* congratulations to Jessica Abel and Matt Madden on the Sunday birth of their daughter, Aldara Juliet Abel Madden.


* another Top Comics For 2007 list, this one from Kevin Church as a supplement to his list from yesterday:
1. Age Of Bronze Volume 3: Betrayal (Part 1), Eric Shanower
2. Agents of Atlas, Jeff Parker and Leonard Kirk
3. All-Star Superman Volume 1, Grant Morrison, Frank Quietly, and Jamie Grant
4. Amazing Fantasy Omnibus, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, and Various
5. The Amazing Transformations of Jimmy Olsen, Various
6. Annihilation: Books 1-3, Various
7. Batman: Year 100, Paul Pope
8. Betsy and Me, Jack Cole
9. Beyond!, Dwayne McDuffie and Scott Kolins
10. Blade: Sins of the Father, Marc Guggenheim and Howard Chaykin (cover art pictured)
11. Captain America: War and Remembrance, Roger Stern and John Byrne
12. Carl Is The Awesome!, Marcos Perez
13. Casanova Volume 1: Luxuria, Matt Fraction and Gabriel Ba
14. The Claws Come Out, Pat Lewis
15. Comic Book Holocaust, Johnny Ryan
16. The Complete Peanuts, Charles Schulz
17. Devil Dinosaur Omnibus, Jack Kirby
18. Dr 13: Architecture and Morality, Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang
19. Dr Strange: The Oath, Brian K. Vaughn and Marcos Martin
20. Fantastic Four Omnibus Volume 2, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Various
21. Fell Volume 1, Warren Ellis and Ben Templesmith
22. GODLAND: The Celestial Edition, Joe Casey and Tom Scioli
23. Gotham Central: Dead Robin, Greg Rucka, Ed Brubaker, Kano, and Stefan Gaudiano
24. I Shall Destroy All The Civilized Planets, Fletcher Hanks
25. The Immortal Iron Fist: The Last Iron Fist Story, Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, and David Aja
26. Invaders Classic Volume 1, Roy Thomas and Various
27. It Rhymes with Lust, Arnold Drake, Leslie Waller, and Matt Baker
28. Jack Kirby's Fourth World Omnibus Volumes 1-3, Jack Kirby and Various
29. Jack Kirby's Silver Star, Jack Kirby
30. Kamandi Archives Volume 2, Jack Kirby and Various
31. Kane Volume 6: Partners, Paul Grist
32. Krazy & Ignatz: The Kat Who Walked in Beauty, George Herriman
33. The new Love and Rockets Bookshelf Collection, or whatever Fantagraphics is calling it
34. Madman Gargantua, Mike Allred
35. Marvel Masterworks: Nick Fury, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Don Heck, and Various
36. Mean, Steven Weissman
37. The Middleman Volume 3: The Third Volume Inescapability, Javier Grillo-Marxuach and Les McClaine
38. Misery Loves Comedy, Ivan Brunetti
39. Nextwave Volume 2: I Kick Your Face, Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen
40. The Nightly News, Jonathan Hickman
41. Palestine: The Special Edition, Joe Sacco
42. Paris, Andi Watson and Simon Gane
43. Phonogram, Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie
44. Popeye Volume 2: I Yam What I Yam, E.C. Segar
45. The Punisher: Barracuda, Garth Ennis and Goran Parlov
46. The Punisher: Man of Stone, Garth Ennis and Leandro Fernandez
47. The Punisher: Widowmaker, Garth Ennis, Lan Medina, and Bill Reinhold
48. Runaways Volume 3, Brian K. Vaughn, Adrian Alphona, and Mike Norton
49. Sandman Mystery Theater: Dr. Death and the Night of the Butcher, Matt Wagner, Steven T. Seagle, Guy Davis, and Vince Locke
50. Shortcomings, Adrian Tomine
51. Showcase Presents: Adam Strange, Various
52. Showcase Presents: Legion of Super-Heroes, Various
53. Showcase Presents: The Flash, Various
54. Showcase Presents: The War That Time Forgot, Various
55. Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane: Volume 1, Sean McKeever, Takeshi Miyazawa, and various
56. Superman: The Bottle City of Kandor, Various.
57. The Three Paradoxes, Paul Hornschemeier
58. Thor: The Eternals Saga Volume 2, Roy Thomas and Various
59. The Ultimates Volume 2, Mark Millar and Brian Hitch
60. Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse Volume 1, Ben Templesmith
61. X-Men: First Class, Jeff Parker and Roger Cruz
62. Zombies vs Robots, Ashley Wood and Chris Ryall
* go, look: Pilgrim's Progression

* did I already mention this bit of stray publishing news? I keep getting e-mail like I didn't.

* go, read: Homesick by Joseph Lambert

* go, read: Punch 21, Punch 22 and Chris Butcher in Japan 14

* some good news: the Beloit Daily News has reinstated Wiley Miller's Non Sequitur due to the local and national support the strip received after its recent dropping.

* the Newsarama year-end interview with Paul Levitz is certainly one of those must-read things for industry followers (part one, part two); however, modern comics historians might pop a blood vessel a few graphs into part one, so BE CAREFUL.

Here's the thing. Levitz claims that after Marvel decided to distribute itself with Heroes World that the entire industry might have collapsed had DC made different choices. I was around back then covering the industry, and I can't fathom what Levitz is talking about, and I would love for someone to explain it to me. I've never heard anyone else claim the market was that particularly fragile at that point -- in fact, I've always felt it's only the market's strength that kept the downside of the decisions made during those months from killing comics. And if the market was a week away from ending in 1995, how do we possibly find words to describe the real fallow period that followed four to seven years later? Anyhow, no one back then that I'm aware of saw DC as saving itself. Rather, the feeling is that DC pressed a business advantage when Marvel decided on self-distribution by fashioning a hugely favorable deal with the strongest distributor in North America. Other than deciding not to publish comics for three years in protest of Marvel distributing through Heroes World, I can't fathom a decision they could have made right then that would have ended comics. In fact, while most of the other options would have been less beneficial to DC than being first on board with Diamond, none of them would have been harmful, and a lot of people feel they would have been more beneficial to everyone else and even the big companies in the long run. To suggest DC might have taken a pass on pressing the advantages available to them due to Marvel's stupidity is somehow equivalent to their helping the industry entire to duck Armageddon seems to me untenable according to all the information I've seen.

There's a lot of information I haven't seen, of course. Was DC perhaps the agency responsible for deciding that Diamond would cover Capital's accounts when Capital went under? That would count as a decision that had it gone the other way might have punched a fist Authority-style through the chest of the modern comics industry. I sort of doubt it, though. That would suggest a far greater relationship between the two companies than we've ever seen before, plus DC going to Diamond is what started the string of events that finally pushed Capital out the door.

Seriously, if anyone knows what Mr. Levitz is getting at, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
posted 9:55 pm PST | Permalink

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