Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Here are a bunch of links.

Here's Dynamite Entertainment CEO Nick Barrucci admitting that yeah, they probably published way too many Green Hornet comics last year. I think it's fair to say that there's nothing too terribly surprising about that opinion, and that it's probably pretty widely held, but it's still pretty interesting to hear him saying it out loud in public. The above linked-to interview with is actually sort of wide-ranging and candid sounding, and worth a read if you're terribly interested in the publisher or its place and in the direct market.

Here's a neat little online comic from Pearls Before Swine cartoonist Stephan Pastis, entitled "Five Places You Never Seem to See College Mascots." The mascot he draws in each of those places looks like our old friend Brutus Buckeye.

Here are some great redesigns of superheroes, "Amercianizing" them ala Marvel's "American Panther." I was really struck by how many of them you might think shouldn't work—like Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Red Skull or Yellowjacket—totally do. Those four were probably my favorite, although I sorta dig the American Canary and American Goblin one's too, the latter for it's sheer insanity. I also love how cool some of the names sound (American Arrow, American Jacket, etc).

Here are some cool superhero re-designs, from Project: Rooftop—Karl Savage's "Incredible League of America", which gives the "Big Seven" Leaguers hrybridized costumes based on those of Pixar's Incredibles, Toks Solarin's Japanese-style Red Robin, which is several hundred times cooler than the current Red Robin costume, and Jason Adenuga's Wonder Woman, which seems to accomplish several of the goals of the recent Jim Lee pants-and-jacket costume, but does so much, much, much better. All three are pretty great artists too; I'd especially like to see Adenuga's art on the cover of or inside the pages of the official comic book of his chosen subject.

Here's Ben Morse from The Cool Kids Table blog discussing his first Justice League. I think my first Justice League, barring Superfriends cartoons and a single drug store-purchased gift issue with a striking cover, was the same Dan Jurgens-written, Superman-lead version of the team, the one that fought Doomsday. I still have a very vivid memory of sitting in study hall in the school library my freshman year and hearing a couple comprised of two of the more popular kids in my class discussing the line-up of the Justice League of America. I remember them really struggling, and the female half suggesting characters like Captain America or Spider-Man, and the male half saying, "No, I think he's a Marvel guy." This went on for minutes and minutes, and I felt a growing frustration as I overheard them, furiously debating with myself whether I should jump in or not, since I had just recently read an issue of Justice League of America and knew the current line-up. When I just couldn't take it anymore, I wrote down a list of the Leaguers' names in a column on a piece of notebook paper—Booster Gold, Blue Beetle, Maxima, Fire, Ice, etc.—and slid it over to them, explaining I happened to have just read a JLA comic. They weren't impressed, and, in fact, seemed genuinely befuddled by my entry into the conversation and what I had to share. They politely looked the list over, and a brief conversation ensued about how they had never heard of any of these guys, and didn't remember any of them, and weren't Fire and Ice friends with Spider-Man on his cartoon, and then rather quickly abandoned the topic altogether, and I felt foolish—not only had I butted into their conversation, I did so with nothing of any real value to offer, and I made them feel awkward in the process. In retrospect, I guess they were trying remember who was on the old Superfriends cartoons, not who was on the Justice League in the comics appearing that month. I will never forgive you for making me feel that foolish, Dan Jurgens! (No, it's cool; I forgive you). That particular couple is still together, and have been married for many years and have two kids. And, as for me, I still know the current line-up of the Justice League of America.

Here's something of possible interest to someone. Three nights a week I skim through Comic Book Blog Updates and Update-A-Tron looking for interesting posts to link to in my linkblogging for Blog@. I do that in addition to my usual, own, personal usage of the comics blogosphere. In the first few days after the release of Fear Itself #1, the beginning of Marvel's major publishing initiative for the majority of the year, I only came across three reviews of it (here, here and here). In that same time I found three reviews of Chester Brown's Paying For It (here, here and here...Those are from three good writers, so I imagine they're three good reviews, but I'm waiting to read 'em until I write my own of Paying For It). Anyway, is that an exceptionally small number of Fear Itself reviews, perhaps reflecting event fatigue, or is that an exceptionally large number of Paying For It reviews, reflecting excitement over it?

Here is a Newsarama article entitled "The Five POOREST Comic Book Characters." It's meant as a bit of a lark, so I hate to take exception with it, but as a Newsarama contributor, I can't help but feel a little ashamed by the appalling lack of Sluggo on the list.

Here's Joel Meadows' photo-filled coverage of Mark Millar's recent Kapow convention. It seems like there were either more and better cosplayers there then at other conventions of that size, or else Meadows did a swell job finding and photographing the cream of the crop. Also, Mark Millar seems like he should be better dressed in these photos, if it's his con. I would think he should wear a coat and tie and the least, although, were I him, I would add a top hat and a sash reading "Founder."

Here's Laura Hudson responding to a somewhat disturbing piece of weird-ass Batman and Catwoman art. Where is that piece even from? It doesn't seem like it could possibly be something DC Comics would publish—as much because Catwoman looks more like the Halle Berry movie version than the Selina Kyle of the comics version—but Batman is wearing his new comic book costume, which isn't a very cool one, and not the one I would imagine many folks wanting in a commission of their very specific fetish. Oh, and that's an odd Catwoman costume too, as it's neither Berry's movie version nor the current comics Catwoman costume. Anyway, just curious about the origins of that image.

Here's Greg McElhatton reviewing the recently published Suicide Squad Vol. 1: Trial By Fire. I never sufficiently got it together to formally review the trade after writing an excited post about Ronald Reagan's role in it, so go read McElhatton's review instead. I agree with most of what he wrote. The only thing I'd really disagree with is his assessment of Luke McDonnell's art as "fine but ultimately nothing special," describing thusly: "It’s in many ways the epitome of mid-’80s superhero comic art; clean lines, solid page layouts, good but not very memorable character’s easy to follow, and I never felt from start to finish like the art was working against the story; it’s just that McDonnell’s art will also never turn your head." Maybe I'm just used to seeing too much bad art at this time, because to me typical mid-eighties art practically means masterful, since in the decades since expressiveness of style and the popularity of the artist doing the drawing came to be more important than basics like clarity. Suicide Squad—a very good comic. Now let's hurry up and finish collecting the rest of the damn series, DC!

Here's Joe McCulloch writing a long, smart, incisive piece on Frank Miller's The Spirit and Zack Snyder's Sucker Punch. I'm not gonna lie—sometimes I just straight up hate that Joe McCulloch character. Why's he gotta be so damn good at writing? Jerk.

Here's a bunch of pictures of that goofy Batman Live thing. Batman, Robin and The Joker all look like hybridized designs drawing equal inspiration from comics versions and film versions of the characters (With Batman looking more movie-like than the others). Interestingly, many of the other characters who have appeared in films—The Penguin, The Riddler, Catwoman, Poison Ivy—look like their designs come straight out of the comics. The Harley Quinn looks completely unique.

Here's a Comics Alliance link-blogging post which references Marijuanaman, and part of the headline reads "Marijuanaman Soars."Why doesn't it say "Marijuanaman Flies High" instead of "Soars"...? They mean the exact same thing, but one if funnier. This really, really bothers me for some reason.

Here is a Golden Age superhero named Airmale.

Here's a review of Boom's Happiness is a Warm Blanket, Charlie Brown graphic novel I wrote. I thought it was pretty good, both as a what-would-it-look-like-if-someone-other-than-Schulz-drew-some-Peanuts-comics curio and as a comic to be enjoyed on its own terms. The only thing I didn't like was the back-matter pertaining to the animated special (style guides, character designs and so forth). Scratch that—I liked those, but I kinda wished they weren't in there, as it seemed like a book I'd really like to buy my nieces (she has an object with which she has a relationship that's quit analogous to Linus' with his blanket), but the back-matter seemed like it would only confuse her.


cosmicomic said...

A second Suicide Squad trade, Nightshade Odyssey, is in fact due out in October - 264 pages for 19.99.

Aki Alaraatikka said...

I guess that you still COULD buy the Charlie Brown book to her, no matter what`s in the last pages of the book. Yeah sure, she might not understand what it`s about, but she can read that after a few yars and understand it then. After all, the comics are the most important thing about the book. And maybe she wouldn`t even read that... whatever it is. Or, maybe I`m wrong. After all, I don`t know about these things.

David Charles Bitterbaum said...

I reviewed Fear Itself for my blog and am a member of that Blog Updates Site so you might have just missed me. It was okay and I do indeed have event fatigue but I'll probably review the others for some reason.