Journalista for April 26, 2010: Hypocritical, pathetic, bitter

Posted by on April 26th, 2010 at 1:56 AM



“You are also one of the most hypocritical, pathetic, bitter human beings I have ever had the misfortune to run into in comics, far worse than the misogynists who at least are honest about what they are.”


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Detail from Seth Tobocman’s cover to World War 3 Illustrated #40.


Recently posted to our homepage:

  • Rob Clough reviews the first volume of Liz Baillie’s new project, Freewheel.

  • Rich Kreiner reviews the 40th issue of the agit-prop anthology World War 3 Illustrated.

  • Tom Crippen reviews the 41st issue of Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson’s superhero satire, The Boys.

  • R.C. Harvey reports on the unveiling of a bronze Dick Tracy statue in Illinois.

  • GutterGeek‘s Alex Boney reviews The Brave and the Bold #33, and examines this year’s Eisner nominees for Best Limited Series or Story Arc.

  • Over at The Hooded Utilitarian, Caroline Small offers a rebuttal to Ben Schwartz’s take on the British sci-fi television series Doctor Who.

And in the news…


Above the Fold


Life in interesting times

  • Free speech, even when you don’t like it: “A Dutch court has acquitted an Arab cultural group of hate crime for publishing a cartoon on its website questioning the Holocaust.”

    From Nana Vol. 10, ©1999 Yazawa Manga Seisakusho.

  • Anime News Network reports that Nana/Paradise Kiss author Ai Yazawa “returned home in early April from the Tokyo hospital where she was being treated for an unspecified serious illlness.” Nana, Yazawa’s current series, has been on hiatus since last summer.

  • After a long and bitter feud, the family of fantasy artist Frank Frazetta has announced an end to hostilities. Kevin Melrose has the details.

  • According to Jim Milliot, online retailer Amazon “reported Thursday afternoon that total revenue for the company jumped 46% in the first quarter to $7.13 billion, and net income rose 68% to $299 million.”

  • Comicon International made no decision at yesterday’s board meeting on whether the event would remain in San Diego past 2012.

  • Animation producer and one-time comics retailer Carl Macek’s memorial service this Saturday will be open to the public.

  • ICv2:

    It’s been looking to us for some time like the book chains have cut back their inventory on manga to the point where they’re vulnerable to competition, so this past weekend, we used our just-invented “Naruto Index” to compare how major book retailers were doing on manga, and the results were instructive.


  • Phillip Molnar profiles Sparta, New Jersey retailer Peter DeFelice.


Today’s Format WarsTM report

  • Rich Johnston reports that French publisher Glenat “have chosen a publishing model where they will make books available for download at a price of 4.99 Euros, around $7.50.”

  • “ Inc. held talks with Kodansha Ltd. to provide electronic versions of Japanese- language books for its Kindle digital reader, Yoshinobu Noma, chief operating officer of Japan’s biggest publisher, said.” The report notes that Japan’s e-book market is “dominated by readership of comics on mobile phones.”

  • The nation of Israel has repealed its ban on Apple’s iPad.

  • According to Craig Teicher, “One so far mostly unsung impact of digital growth in publishing, and the advent of the iPad, is the need for publishers to hire lots of digital-savvy employees to create and manage the new kinds of content the market suddenly demands”

  • Brigid Alverson:

    There are still plenty of multi-comic manga apps on the iTunes store, and every one of them is a mobile reader for a scanlation site. All of them. Some legitimate comics reader apps carry a smattering of manga, but so far the manga publishers themselves have stuck to the older model of publishing each chapter as a separate app. That’s an expensive and clumsy way to read comics; the paradigm has shifted, but the manga publishers haven’t responded.


  • Cory Doctorow:

    The iPad’s DRM restrictions mean that Apple has absolute dominion over who can run code on the device—and while that thin shellac of DRM will prove useless at things that matter to publishers, like preventing piracy, it is deadly effective in what matters to Apple: preventing competition.


  • Craig Mod:

    iBooks and are incompetent e-readers. They get in the way of the reading experience and treat digital books like poorly typeset PDFs.

    (Link via Warren Ellis.)



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Graphic NYC




  • Erica Friedman on Rica Takashima

    Detail from the cover of Takashima’s Rica ‘tte Kanji.

    The Japanese cartoonist discusses how avant-garde anthology Garo influenced her perception of the medium.


  • Alex Carr on James Sturm

    A conversation with the Market Day author.






  • Paul Gravett on Wilson

    ©2010 Daniel Clowes.

    “Nothing is left to chance in a Daniel Clowes book. He considers everything carefully, down to the last design detail. And this is certainly true of his latest graphic novel, the first not to be serialised before elsewhere.”


  • Charles Hatfield on Blackest Night

    “From where I’m sitting, Blackest Night does not bear out the potential of the emotional spectrum concept. The series doesn’t offer much by way of world-building or sense of wonder. What could have been a grand pile-up instead feels like a confused postmortem. Its story-logic is thin and opportunistic, that is, frankly rigged, leaning toward nasty setpieces without the kind of connective tissue that would make those setpieces feel deserved and meaningful.”


  • Martin Steenton on The Playwright

    ©2010 Daren White and Eddie Campbell.

    “Initially disconcerting, White and Campbell gradually assemble a more complex picture of the undersexed solitary scribe. Once the shocking revelation that balding, somewhat unattractive middle aged men have sex drives has passed, his thoughts are no worse than you would expect from the majority of other sexed-starved heterosexual males (well, almost). Here, the playwright becomes quite a sympathetic character; a victim of the processes and necessities that made him so successful in his craft in the first place. Stuck in a desolate Cartesian circle, his only hope would be to effect a change from within, thus freeing himself from the lonely obligations of his art.”






  • Warren Ellis: Shapes

    “And then I thought, well, a proper and useful newspaper-width strip is actually a bit wide for a blog, which tend to containerise inside 600, 700 pixels or so. And maybe it’s the concept and intent of the thing that matter, not slavish replication of the physical object, because this is after all the web and we don’t have no laws or wear no stinkin badges and all that.”


  • Tom Spurgeon: Two wider cultural conversations that may remind you of comics

    “The only huge, complex economic system with which I have a daily relationship is the comics industry’s Direct Market. While it’s admittedly absurd to compare the empires of Caesar and Geppi in too many ways, I think it’s worth asking just how fragile the DM is due to factors of complexity: its byzantine structure, say, the at-once gigantic spread of publications and formats it’s supposed to serve and tiny gradations between certain products — this comic here is for fans of Wolverine, while this one is for fans of dark Wolverine — it’s asked to honor.”




Business and Craft


  • Comicrazys: Paul Coker’s decorative approach

    “The humorous illustrator faces a harder task when his or her drawing is not essential to the work.”


  • David King on lettering

    “I think about comics lettering all the time! Here are a few conclusions I’ve come to.”

    (Link via Brigid Alverson.)


Comics and Art


  • Online museum: The Magic of Mary Blair

    1951 drawing for Alice in Wonderland.

    The revered Disney animator and cartoonist finally gets the online treatment she deserves, along with husband Lee and son Preston.

    (Link via Jerry Beck.)


  • Castor + Pollux: Julie Doucet linocut prints

    ©2010 Julie Doucet.

    Scenes from a Brighton exhibition.






  • Brian Heater: MoCCA 2010 sequential-activism panel

    Streaming audio at the link.


Comics Culture


  • Award round-up

    • “The Washington Examiner‘s editorial cartoonist, Nate Beeler, received the prestigious Thomas Nast Award from the Overseas Press Club on Thursday, given for the nation’s best cartoons on international affairs.”
    • David Mazzucchelli has won the Los Angeles Times Graphic Novel Prize for Asterios Polyp.
    • Tom Spurgeon has this year’s Stumptown trophy winners.


  • Jamie Griswold: Everybody Draw Mohammed Day

    “After Comedy Central cut a portion of a South Park episode following a death threat from a radical Muslim group, Seattle cartoonist Molly Norris wanted to counter the fear. She has declared May 20th ‘Everybody Draw Mohammed Day.'”

    Elsewhere, law professor and blogger Ann Althouse explains why she doesn’t think it’s a good idea.


  • John Porcellino: Denver Comic Fest

    “There’s a real sense of community developing here in Denver among the comics scene. It doesn’t matter whether you’re making zombie comics, superhero comics for DC, or melancholy comics about watching squirrels (ahem), but there’s a place here for you, and people look out for each other and provide support and encouragement. I think that’s pretty cool.”



Events Calendar




  • April 26 (Baltimore, MD): Kim Deitch gives a slide talk at the Mattin Center on Charles Street, beginning at 5:30PM. Details here.
  • April 26 (Brighton, England): Garen Ewing discusses his work at The Cricketers on Black Lion Street, beginning at 6PM. Details here.
  • April 26 (Toronto, Ontario): Jeffrey Brown gives a reading and signing at the North York Central Library on Yonge Street, from 6:30-8:30PM. Details here.
  • April 26 (San Francisco, CA): Join Gene Yang, Andy Hartzell, Lark Pien, Dash Shaw and moderator Summerlea Kashar for a discussion of the graphic novel at the Commonwealth Club on Market Street, beginning at 6:30PM. Admission is $20. Details here.


This Week:


  • April 27 (San Francisco, CA): Dash Shaw makes an appearance at Isotope on Fell Street, from 7PM-midnight. Details here.
  • April 28 (Washington DC): Joe Sacco will give a presentation and discussion of his work at American University, beginning at 2:10PM. Details here.
  • April 28 (London, England): Brian Sibley discusses the career of Ronald Searle at the Cartoon Museum on Little Russell Street, from 6:30-7:30PM. Details here.
  • April 28 (San Francisco, CA): Beth Cary and Frederik Schodt discuss the work of Hayao Miyazaki — which makes this “not comics,” but what the hell — at the Cartoon Art Museum on Mission Street, from 7-9PM. Details here.
  • April 28 (Berkeley, CA): Dash Shaw will discuss his work at Pegasus Books on Shattuck Avenue, beginning at 7:30PM. Details here.
  • April 29 (Portland, OR): Dash Shaw makes an appearance at Powell’s Books on Hawthorne Boulevard, beginning at 7PM. Details here.
  • April 30-May 2 (Naples, Italy): The International Comics Festival — wait, you guys aren’t pretending you’re the only one, are you? Details here.
  • April 30 (Manchester, England): An opening reception for Oliver East’s new exhibit will be held at the International 3 on Fairfield Street, from 6-9PM. Details here.
  • May 1-9 (Lucerne, Switzerland): It’s the Fumetto Festival, and it wants you! Details here.
  • May 1 (Everywhere): Free Comic Book Day is today! Get yourself out to a participating comics shop and pick up a free funnybook. Details here.
  • May 1 (Berkeley, CA): Gene Yang will discuss his work at Mrs. Dalloway’s on College Avenue, beginning at 7PM. Details here.
  • May 2 (Washington DC): The Washington Comicon comes to George Mason University. Details here.


Want to see your comics-related event listed here? Email a link to and let me know. Please include an online link to which I can send people for more information. No sales-only events, please — it’s nice that you’ve marked things down at your store or website, but I won’t be listing it here.


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2 Responses to “Journalista for April 26, 2010: Hypocritical, pathetic, bitter”

  1. patford says:

    Dirk, Thanks for the link on Mary Blair. I’ve loved her work forever, and never more than on those few days when I’ve been at Disney World with my children.
    It’s A Small World is the only truly good thing about Disney World. Beautiful “Atomic-Age Design” and nice and cool in the blistering hot in October Florida sun. If I could convince the kids I’d be quite happy to spend the whole day riding over and over.
    I don’t collect original art because it’s miles out of my price range. A couple of years ago I tried to make a stab at it. I get the Russ Cochran auction catalogues only to look at the art, but there it was in front of me a beautiful Mary Blair illustration in full colour with an estimate or $600. Thinking that the art had stumbled into the wrong auction, one where she was unknown I placed my first and only bid ever…$800. I wanted the art and figured I’d go above estimate. Later I got the results. I didn’t win. The piece went for 20k.

  2. […] links to a BBC report about the acquital of the AEL for publishing Holocaust […]