1 November 2006
[comics] Brian K. Vaughan interviewed on BBC Radio (requires Real Audio) — the comic writer was interviewed on the Today Programme this morning about his new graphic novel about the Iraq War, Pride of Baghdad.
2 November 2006
[books] My Mother and the DahliaJames Ellroy on the Black Dahlia and his Mother … ‘I wrote six good novels and crashed Betty and Jean with The Black Dahlia. It was a salutary ode to Elizabeth Short and a self-serving and perfunctory embrace of my mother. I acknowledged the Jean-Betty confluence in media appearances and exploited it to sell books. My performances were commanding at first glance and glib upon reappraisal. I cut my mother down to sound-bite size and packaged her wholesale. I determined the cause of my ruthlessness years later. She owned me…’
3 November 2006
[wikipedia] Wikipedia’s Lamest Edit WarsAvengers (Comics) vs. New Avengers (Comics): ‘Should there be a separate page for New Avengers (comics)? Is the name of the team now the New Avengers or is it just a new Avengers? Is it a new comic entirely or just a continuation of the old one? Following a positive merge vote, a series of reverts occurs when an editor “merges” the two by simply pasting the merged information into the article, creating two articles in one. The slow nature of the revert war means that, technically, nobody violates WP:3RR, and requests for help from other admins go unheeded because, well, it’s lame. After a series of exchanges on the talk page questioning people’s command of English as well as their sanity, the issue appears to have been settled with the creation of New Avengers (comic book) (note the oh-so-subtle distinction)…’ [thanks Alisterb]
4 November 2006
[metaverse] Goodbye, Cruel World — an Observer journalist spends a week in Second Life‘The simple genius of Second Life is that it combines elements of Big Brother culture with the spirit of eBay. It plays to the contemporary urge to project ourselves into every story, to write our own emotions larger than anyone else’s, to perform rather than to listen, to blog rather than read. And it also offers unlimited opportunities to shop.’ [thanks Sasha]
5 November 2006
[comics] ‘The Ways of Women are a MYSTERY to me!’ — a panel from Avengers #35 spotted on scans_daily

amusing panel from an old avengers comic

[wikipedia] My Wikipedia Contrail: Peter Falk‘Falk wears an ocular prosthetic (“glass eye”). His right eye was surgically removed at the age of three because of cancer.’
6 November 2006
[net] The Guardian’s Web 2.0 Feature — an article and interviews covering Web 2.0 (the interviews are with people like Matt Mullenweg, Evan Williams and Joshua Schachter) … ‘Sit someone at a computer screen and let it sink in that they are fully, definitively alone; then watch what happens. They will reach out for other people; but only part of the way. They will have “friends”, which are not the same thing as friends, and a lively online life, which is not the same thing as a social life; they will feel more connected, but they will be just as alone. Everybody sitting at a computer screen is alone. Everybody sitting at a computer screen is at the centre of the world. Everybody sitting at a computer screen, increasingly, wants everything to be all about them. This is our first glimpse of what people who grow up with the net will want from the net.’
7 November 2006
[google] Searchmash — Google 2.0 or Google’s Playground… You Decide. [via Google Operating System]
[comics] Come fly with me — the Guardian previews the film Hollywoodland – includes an interview with Ben Affleck on playing George Reeves‘When the actor George Reeves died in 1959, the headline ran: “Super hero, out of work, kills Self”.’
8 November 2006
[comics] Election Day 2006 – Whose Side Is Your Favorite Superhero On? — Dave’s Long Box wonders what the political affiliations are of various notable Superheroes … ‘Batman is a true independent, a man of solid principles and baffling contradictions. This may be because he is mentally ill…’
9 November 2006
[firefox] Paste and Go — useful time saving Firefox extension which allows you to paste a URL into the address bar of Firefox and then immediately to that website without clicking the Go Button or pressing return.
10 November 2006
[comics] Alan Moore to Appear on the Simpsons‘[Moore] features in a sub-plot which sees a new ‘cool’ comic shop opening in Springfield in competition with the Android’s Dungeon, run by Comic Book Guy who is voiced by Hank Azaria. The new shop has persuaded Moore to make a public appearance.’ [via Progressive Ruin]
11 November 2006
[comics] The Morrison Method (for optimal Seven Soldiers Appreciation) — sensible readers may wish to read the trades! [Seven Soldiers Vol 1, Vol 2, Vol 3]
[tv] Never-Ending Stories — article about how to fix the format of TV Shows like Lost. ‘Puzzles are meant to be solved, not prolonged. You can only tease viewers so long before they feel like they’re being mocked.’ [via City of Sound]
12 November 2006
[comics] ‘…and get this Pigeon off my head!’ — goofy old panel from Action Comics #331 spotted on scans_daily.

[secondlife] Warren Ellis on Second Life: ‘The laissez-faire nature of SL has turned much of the mainland into a retard’s toybox. Second Life is, by and large, an ugly, stupid-looking place, a riot of bad signage, lurid coloured blocks and constructions that’d embarrass a four-year-old playing with Lego.’
13 November 2006
[wikipedia] My Wikipedia Contrail: Russell’s Teapot … Bertrand Russell: ‘If I were to suggest that between the Earth and Mars there is a china teapot revolving about the sun in an elliptical orbit, nobody would be able to disprove my assertion provided I were careful to add that the teapot is too small to be revealed even by our most powerful telescopes. But if I were to go on to say that, since my assertion cannot be disproved, it is intolerable presumption on the part of human reason to doubt it, I should rightly be thought to be talking nonsense. If, however, the existence of such a teapot were affirmed in ancient books, taught as the sacred truth every Sunday, and instilled into the minds of children at school, hesitation to believe in its existence would become a mark of eccentricity and entitle the doubter to the attentions of the psychiatrist in an enlightened age or of the Inquisitor in an earlier time.’
14 November 2006
[blogs] Russell Davies on Blogging: ‘It’s easy to knock blogging as a kind of journalism of the banal but in some ways that’s its strength. Bloggers don’t go out and investigate things (mostly) they’re not in exciting or glamorous places, they’re not given a story, they have to build one out of the everyday lives they lead. And this makes them good at noticing things, things that others might not have seen. And being a blogger, feeling the need to write about stuff makes you pay attention to more things, makes you go out and see more stuff, makes you carry a notebook, keeps you tuned in to the world.’ (from a larger article on “How To Be Interesting“)
[thisisgood] David Blaine Street Magic Spoof — NSFW, it’s loud with much swearing but laugh-out-loud funny. [via Metafilter]
[stories] Very Short Stories — some notable writers create six word stories inspired by one from Ernest Hemingway … Alan Moore: ‘Machine. Unexpectedly, I’d invented a time’ [via]
15 November 2006
[comics] Seven Soldiers Wrap-Up Interview with Grant Morrison‘Remember the first time you picked up an X-Men or Avengers book and it was stuffed to the staples with parallel universes, clones, alternate future versions of characters, and a continuity so dense you could stand a spoon in it? The chaos, confusion and excitement of being thrown without a guidebook into a new world was intoxicating to me and it seems that superhero comics only start to get boring when that sense of anything-can-or-can’t-happen is replaced by familiarity.’ [via Journalista]
16 November 2006
[books] The Mother Load — another interview with James Ellroy … ‘What I like about the era I am writing about, meaning 1958 to 1972, is that the anti-Communism mandate justified virtually any kind of clandestine activity. I like exploring the mind-set of extreme expediency.’ [via Kottke]
[comics] Chris Weston has a Blog — Chris Weston was the artist on The Filth with Grant Morrison and Ministry of Space with Warren Ellis‘One of the most frequent criticisms levelled at me (by the inbred, ingrate scum who pose as my colleagues) is the fact that all my characters look JUST LIKE ME! That’s one if the hazards of using photographic reference when you’ve only got yourself as a model.’ [via BeaucoupKevin]
17 November 2006
[comics] Roaring’s Rantin’s: The Tale of Rudcliff and Williams — scans of an obscure Brendan McCarthy and Pete Milligan comic strip from 1987 …

amusing panel from paradax by McCarthy and Milligan

[tv] It’s Like A Jungle Sometimes — Grace Dent on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here‘Being in the jungle makes you constipated. Nobody aside from Lauren Booth has had a poo. Oddly enough, living on a diet of boiled muddy water and chargrilled alligator bum doesn’t do much for the bowels. Neither does sitting on the loo praying for movement with David Gest’s ghoulish face against the door clutching a bucket of water asking if you’ve had any luck.’
18 November 2006
[tv] Make Love, Not Warcraft — Southpark animators discuss intergrating World of Warcraft into an episode of the animated TV Show … ‘The Blizzard team gave us a special “friends and family” server to play on. Every once an a while a strange player would walk by and check out group the filming. The programmers could instantly kill a player that got in the way of filming. There’s a player out there wondering what they had stumbled upon just before they were wiped from the location.’
19 November 2006
[film] Who killed Superman? — more from the Guardian on the true story behind the movie Hollywoodland‘As with the many theories that swirl around the unsolved murder of Elizabeth Short – the tortured and mutilated Black Dahlia – there are too many contradictory pieces to assemble a single coherent jigsaw puzzle of Reeves’ death/murder. Or rather, there are perhaps three jigsaws with not enough pieces to complete any of them.’
20 November 2006
[tech] Health fears lead schools to dismantle wireless networks‘Michael Bevington, a classics teacher for 28 years at the school, said that he had such a violent reaction to the network that he was too ill to teach. “I felt a steadily widening range of unpleasant effects whenever I was in the classroom,” he said. “First came a thick headache, then pains throughout the body, sudden flushes, pressure behind the eyes, sudden skin pains and burning sensations, along with bouts of nausea. Over the weekend, away from the classroom, I felt completely normal.”’
[rss] I updated LMG to WordPress a couple of months ago. It was pretty painless and I hope no one actually noticed the change but one of the downsides was that I had to redirect my RSS feed. The permanent home of the new feed can be found here:

The old feed will still work but if you’re anal about these things you might want to update it. While I’m at it – you can email me via this form if you wish and if you’re stalking me you might find my Linklog and Flickr Photostream interesting.
21 November 2006
[books] Creator of a monstrous hit — profile of Thomas Harris the man behind Hannibal Lecter and his new book Hannibal Rising‘The profound mystery of the first two Lecter novels, Red Dragon (1981), in which the doctor appears only as a minor character, and in prison at that, and The Silence of the Lambs (1988), was that no psychological explanation was offered for his extreme cruelty. He was beholden to no one and seemed to have come from nowhere. ‘Nothing happened to me,’ he tells Clarice Starling, the investigator whose mission it becomes to trap him. ‘I happened. You can’t reduce me to a set of influences.’ But this, it seems, is exactly what Harris is now attempting to do: to reduce Lecter to a set of influences, to show how he became the man he is, without conscience or remorse…’
22 November 2006
[comics] A Transcript of Alan Moore on Fanboy Radio — you can also download the podcast … Moore on the Simpsons Episode: ‘The episode involves new competition to The Android’s Dungeon that brings in hip comic creators like “my hip self, the hip Art Spiegelman and Dan Clowes to their new shop. If Trey Parker and Matt Stone are listening… your South Park DVD distribution here in the UK is shameful! Should they offer to let me on their show, I’d do it. I dunno – if George Clooney can play a gay dog… If there is some other sexually-confused animal, I’d be a natural for it in many ways.’
23 November 2006
[movies] The Top 10 Movie Spaceships‘The Nostromo is little more than a space tugboat, pulling a giant ore refinery through space. Though it has no weapons, when given the (famously complex) command to self-destruct, it really goes off with a bang. An underrated ship, it could land on planets and scope out foreign lifeforms… which turned out to be not such a great idea after all.’
24 November 2006
[books] Digested Read: In Search of Perfection by Heston Blumenthal‘Black Forest Gateau has an undeserved reputation as a dessert for chavs. My extensive research, both in Germany and at the Fat Duck development kitchen, has proved that Toscano Black 63 chocolate, when combined with cherries soaked in the urine of adolescent male squirrels, is a feast for the senses.’ [Related: In Search of Perfection on Amazon]
25 November 2006
[tv] Binge Watching Contemporary TV — the blog City of Sound on DVD Box Sets … ‘When binge watching really kicks in, the form of the content itself is implicitly involved, as I’d suggest that the tighter the ‘universe’ the show inhabits, the higher the levels of intensity involved. In other words, with a show like ‘The West Wing’ – of which more later – the same set of characters inhabiting largely the same few spaces of the same location over seven seasons creates a gravitational pull which is difficult to escape from. Similarly, ‘Lost’, in being confined by an island, builds up a fictional universe one is immersed for most of the episode, with flashbacks off-island simply a counterpoint to the resolution of returning to that natural prison. Arguably, most successful TV shows have attempted to create a tightly defined universe…’
26 November 2006
[books] Robert Pirsig Interview — a wide-ranging discussion with the author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance‘He says that ever since he could think he had an overwhelming desire to have a theory that explained everything. As a young man – he was at university at 15 studying chemistry – he thought the answer might lie in science, but he quickly lost that faith. ‘Science could not teach me how to understand girls sitting in my class, even.’ He went to search elsewhere…’
27 November 2006
[comics] Scans of The Master Race by Bernie Krigstein … [via Comics Reporter]

panels from Bernie Krigstein's Master Race

[comics] Eddie Campbell has a Blog‘In the old days i’d have made a one-page ‘Alec’ out of this, but today we squander our narratives in a blog.’ [via Comics Reporter]
28 November 2006
[comics] Tharg the Mighty’s MySpace Profile‘Borag Thungg, Earthlets!’ [via this Metafilter post on Eddie Campbell and 2000AD creators blogging]
29 November 2006
[myspace] Murder”‰on”‰MySpace — Wired documents another murder involving MySpace … ‘In many murders, victims and their killers are acquainted: wife shoots husband, crack dealer stabs customer, pimp strangles streetwalker. So you would expect some interaction among the friends and relatives of the perpetrator and the victim. In fact, typically there’s little. Even after intra-family crimes, relatives tend to choose sides and stay on them. “People distance themselves,” says Charles Figley, head of Florida State University’s Traumatology Institute. “The ties that bind people – births, marriages – split apart because of a catastrophe.” On social network sites, those sides interact. Victims’ buddies can howl at killers’ cousins, and the cousins can scream back. “All the old social relationship models and theories don’t apply anymore,” Figley adds. “We’re rewriting textbooks here.”‘
30 November 2006
[simpsons] When iPods take over the Earth — screengrabs from a new episode of the Simpsons showing what happens after the iPods become self-aware.