Journalista for June 2, 2010: The force of a sledgehammer

Posted by on June 2nd, 2010 at 2:38 AM



“Recently, I’ve been putting together a presentation on manga on digital devices (cellphones, iPad, Kindle, online, etc.) and I’ve come to a disappointing conclusion: I’ve always used Apple computers, but their draconian Censorship policies make them incapable of supporting any kind of serious manga presence on their devices.”


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From Aya; ©2007 Marguerite Abouet and Clément Oubrerie, translated by Helge Dascher.


Recently posted to our homepage:

  • Kristy Valenti presents the first installment of a three-part roundtable discussion on comics translation, featuring participants Anjali Singh, Helge Dascher, Camellia Nieh and Kim Thompson.

  • Matthias Wivel reports from last weekend’s Oslo Comics Expo in Norway.

  • Rich Kreiner reviews a number of minicomics acquired at the recent Maine Comics Festival.

  • GutterGeek‘s Chris Reilly interviews small-press cartoonist Neil Fitzpatrick.

  • Richard Cook weighs in on The Hooded Utilitarian‘s round table on David Mazzucchelli’s asterios Polyp.

And in the news…


Above the Fold


Life in interesting times

  • “Disney Publishing Worldwide said [Monday] that it is now managing the global children’s licensed book publishing business formerly overseen by Marvel Entertainment. “

    Art detail from the first volume of Chobits, created by and ©2001 CLAMP.

  • In the course of a report on the manga presence at the recently concluded BookExpo America trade show, Kai-Ming Cha catches a bit of counterintuitive news:

    Despite the overall perception that manga is faring poorly in a flat/down market, manga publishers are reporting successes. Michael Martens, Dark Horse director of new development, told PWCW that manga sales at Dark Horse are up 13%. “We’re holding steady on the adult manga, Beserk and Gantz. And the CLAMP titles [Clover omnibus, Card Captor Sakura, and volume one of Chobits] have sold really well.”

    Related: Reverse Thieves offers commentary on the manga slump.


  • “A bill on tightening regulations on sexual imagery of minors in comics and animations will likely be rejected in the current session of the Tokyo metropolitan assembly from Tuesday as the largest assembly group has decided to vote it down, assembly sources said.”

  • The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund offices have moved.


Today’s Format WarsTM report

  • “Giants and upstarts of publishing gathered at the annual BookExpo America here last week agreed e-books will transform the business but believe the big change will come when there is a standard format across which all e-books can be published and shared.”

  • Anthony Ha and Erick Schonfeld look at the growth of Comixology’s software suite, including plans to bring the app to the Internet.

  • Tim Bray discusses Google’s Android compatibility program, and how the company is fighting the threat of fragmentation across mobile platforms.

  • Steve Jobs discussed Apple’s strategy in what he’s calling the “post-PC era.” Barb Dybwad has a report. Not discussed: The company’s continuing habit of blindsiding its developers.

    Related: Robert Wright asks, “Is Steve Jobs Big Brother?”



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Graphic NYC




  • Alix Roy on Keith Knight

    Detail from The Knight Life, ©2008 Keith Knight.

    “Knight began drawing comics in grade school but points to a high school English project as the pivotal moment where he realized his dream of becoming a professional cartoonist. Mr. Hinds, an English teacher at Malden High School, agreed to let Knight pass in a comic book based on George Orwell’s Animal Farm instead of a traditional report. The result was parody of the novel in which students took over the school. It earned Knight an A++ and a suggestion from Hinds that he start a syndicated comic strip.”





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Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics




  • Kristy Valenti on Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

    “As it now stands, anyone looking for some brain food in the graphic novel will find mostly cauliflower.”






  • David Barnett: The prints of darkness

    “[Jack Chick] has created a global business in tiny, comic-strip ‘tracts’ that drive home fundamentalist Christian principles with the force of a sledgehammer. Where can you find them? You might have had one pressed into your hand in a busy shopping street. You can find them left on pub tables, presumably in a last-ditch attempt to save sinners’ souls. Last week, I found one on the floor of a multi-storey car park.”


  • John Porcellino: Spragg, the Living Mountain

    “I guess the mystery has since been lost to time, but I’d love to know who at Mighty Marvel came up with this one…”


Comics and Art


  • Comicrazys: Floyd Gottfredson’s Mickey Mouse

    ©1933 Walt Disney Enterprises.

    A generous and extended sequence from the “Mickey And His Horse Tanglefoot” storyline.





Comics Culture


  • Calvin Reid and Heidi MacDonald: Comics at BookExpo America

    “While this year’s BookExpo America wasn’t as gaga over graphic novels as the 2009 BEA — remember, Stitches, Logicomix and R. Crumb’s Book of Genesis were three of the the biggest books at last year’s show—comics were still a solid albeit subdued niche at this year’s BEA.”




  • Your Not-Comics Link of the Day:

    “Kazuo Ohno, a founder of Butoh, the influential Japanese dance-theater form whose traditional look of darkness and decay evoked for many the horrors of the wartime bombings of Japan, died on Tuesday in Yokohama, Japan. He was 103 and had continued to perform beyond his 100th year.”

    There are a number of Ohno’s performances available at YouTube.


Events Calendar


This Week:


  • June 3 (Malden, MA): Keith Knight will discuss and sign copies of his work at the Malden Public Library on Salem Street, beginning at 7PM. Details here.
  • June 3 (Oakland, CA): Dan Clowes will discuss and sign copies of his new book Wilson at the Diesel Bookstore on College Avenue, beginning at 7PM. Details here.
  • June 3 (New York City, NY): Susan Kim, Laurence Klavan and Pascal Dizin sign their new book City of Spies at the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art on Broadway, beginning at 7PM. Details here.
  • June 4-6 (Charlotte, NC): This weekend it’s HeroesCon, taking place at the Charlotte Convention Center and boasting an inclusive gathering of the various comics tribes. Details here.
  • June 4 (Seattle, WA): The Lobster and the Liver, a full-length documentary about Jim Woodring, will be shown at the Central Cinema on 21st Avenue, beginning at 7PM. Details here.
  • June 4 (Los Angeles, CA): It’s all-fanboy stand-up comedy night at Meltdown Comics on Sunset Boulevard, beginning at 8PM. Admission is $4. Details here.
  • June 5 (London, England): Jamie McKelvie, Kieron Gillen and Becky Cloonan make an appearance at Gosh! Comics on Great Russell Street, from 2-4PM. 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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