Journalista for Jan. 21, 2010: Grim ‘n’ gritty Zan and Jana!

Posted by on January 21st, 2010 at 9:45 AM




“Fortunately, on the matter of not stepping on one another’s toes in collecting public domain material, we have a gentleman’s agreement with… uh…

“Never mind. It was nice while it lasted.”


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Recently posted to our homepage:

  • Noah Berlatsky reviews The James Bond Omnibus.

  • Rich Kreiner contemplates Dark Reign.

  • As always, R.C. Harvey covers the funny pages.

  • GutterGeek‘s Jared Gardner reviews J.P. Kalonji’s 365 Samurai And A Few Bowls Of Rice… and I can’t believe I missed this charming sampler of Jack Callahan’s short-lived newspaper strip, Hon and Dearie.

  • Richard Cook and Noah Berlatsky kick in with contributions to the ongoing xxxHOLiC roundtable over at The Hooded Utilitarian.

  • Here’s Shaenon Garrity with today’s public-service announcement.

  • Not comics: Donald Phelps looks back at the lives and careers of actors Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy.

  • Finally, congratulations to Kent Worcester and Jeet Heer, whose A Comics Studies Reader has “just been named the Peter C. Rollins Book Award by the Southwest Texas Popular/American Culture Association.”

(Above: panel from xxxHOLiC Vol. 2, ©2010 CLAMP.)

And in the news…


Above the Fold


Life in interesting times

  • Ending over a year of speculation over the company’s financial health, Platinum Studios has announced “that it has entered into an Investment Agreement for a $5,000,000 equity line of credit with Dutchess Opportunity Fund II, LP.”

  • Anime News Network reoprts that Yen Press will print 350,000 copies of the first Twilight graphic novel.

  • Among other promotions, Marvel has announced that executive editor Tom Brevoort is now a vice president.

  • “A teenage girl who made a fan video proclaiming her love and support for elderly cartoonist Kurt Westergaard has received a number of threats in recent days,” reports the Copenhagen Post.

  • In a potential victory for independent print-on-demand services, Booklocker has settled its lawsuit with over the latter’s attempts to freeze out competition to its own (then) BookSurge service.

  • The National Cartoonists Society is auctioning art in support of an animator whose son was rendered comatose after a car accident.

  • ICv2 presents a three-part interview with Viz Media marketing VP Gonzalo Ferreyra: one, two and three.

  • Adam Ostrow reports that Amazon will open an app store for its Kindle e-book reader, while the Dow Jones Newswire informs us that the company “announced a new royalty option with more financial incentive for authors and publishers to keep e-book prices low, allowing those using the company’s e-reader platform to earn more for each book sold.”

    (Second link via Alan Gardner.)


  • Jim Shelley continues his survey of industry expectations surrounding the Apple tablet.

  • Publishers Weekly notes a new study from the Kaiser Family Foundation that finds the act of reading to be “holding steady among young people.”

  • Kevin Haas speaks with Illinois retailers Jimmy and Debbie Ballard.

  • I’m guessing that this Tintin won’t be reaching Tibet.




  • Marylynne Pitz on Jeff Kinney

    That Diary of a Wimpy Kid guy sure knows how to get his name out there, doesn’t he?


  • Steve Tarter on Julie Larson

    The cartoonist behind the Dinette Set newspaper strip explains why she abandoned her syndicate to self-distribute her work.




  • Sean T. Collins on Detective Comics #854-860

    “Is the story a game-changer, a brain-melter? No. But it’s a good deal wilder and weirder and, yes, more wondrous than your average spandex-turned-kevlar effort. And shame on me for not seeing how [J.H.] Williams’s art, far from an Avatar-style silk hat on a pig, draws on and enhances [Greg] Rucka’s strongest stuff while muting the weaker elements. Simply put, how did I miss how very Hot Topic the whole ‘pale redheaded lesbian dresses up like an S&M vampire and does battle with her pale loligoth Satan-worshipping evil twin sister who dresses like Alice in Wonderland’ thing is? It’s a very glam, very goth, very fetishy, very fun set-up, hammered home with Williams’s dark psychedelia, polymorphous mimickry (that extended Mazzucchelli impersonation is really breathtaking) and (you don’t hear much about this, but for real) dazzling good-girl art.”

    (Above: sequence from Detective Comics #855, ©2009 DC Comics.)


  • Tom Spurgeon on It’s a Girl; It’s a Boy

    “For someone who writes two of the most mainstream American comic strips of the last quarter century, Jerry Scott of Zits and Baby Blues happens to be — through what agency I’m not certain — one of the more aggressive comics creators when it comes to format.”







  • S. Mitra Kalita: Comic strip(per) in good company

    What does a notorious pornographic webcomic share with Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code? Well, it was banned in India, for a start.




  • Glen Weldon: How I learned to stop worrying and wait for the trade collection
  • Jeet Heer: Against purity in comics (and everywhere else)
  • David Apatoff: Art vs. life


Comics and Art


  • Big Blog of Kids’ Comics: Al Wiseman’s Dennis the Menace

    Considered one of the best runs in children’s comic books — find out why with these two stories.

    (Above: panel from “Half-Pint Hombre” in Dennis the Menace #32, ©1959 Hank Ketcham.)


  • John Adcock: John Leech caricatures

    Work from the book Four Hundred Humorous Illustrations with Portrait and Biographical Sketch, published sometime in the 1860s.

    (Above: “Competition: Want your door done, Mum!“)







  • YouTube: Ed Piskor

    A video profile of the Wizzywig author.

    (Above: screenshot from the video. Link via Mike Lynch.)


Comics Culture


  • YALSA: Great Graphic Novels for Teens lists released

    When the Young Adult Library Services Association speaks, people listen.




Events Calendar




  • January 21 (London, England): Paul Gravett will moderate a panel entitled “How a Comic is Made,” featuring scheduled participants Andrzej Klimowski, Danusia Schejbal, Nana Li, Pat Mills and Woodrow Phoenix, at the London Print Studio Gallery on Harrow Road, from 6:30-8PM. Details here.
  • January 21 (New York City, NY): Arie Kaplan will speak with Archie Comics editor-in-chief Victor Gorelick at the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art on Broadway, beginning at 7PM, and the names “Bob Montana” and “Dan DeCarlo” will hang ominously in the air throughout. Details here.
  • January 21 (New York City, NY): Footnotes in Gaza author Joe Sacco will read from his work and sign books at the Brooklyn Public Library in Grand Army Plaza, from 7-8PM. Details here.


This Week:


  • January 22 (Detroit, MI): An opening reception for the “Funny (Not Funny)” exhibition of work by top cartoonists takes place at the University of Michigan Work : Detroit Gallery on Woodward, from 6-9PM. Details here.
  • January 23 (Pittsburgh, PA): Looking for Calvin and Hobbes author Nevin Martell will speak at the Toonseum on Liberty Avenue, from 5:30-7PM. 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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