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July 25, 2000
[comics] The New York Times takes a look at Death Row Marv — based on the Sin City comic from Frank Miller. ‘In “Sin City,” before his death sentence is carried out, Marv has the opportunity to kill the cannibalistic sociopath who murdered the woman he loved, a prostitute named Goldie. That gave him a sense of vindication.’ [via Guardian Weblog]
July 23, 2000
[comics] I cannot believe I have not blogged Jack Chick’s website before now. This Was Your Life gives you a taste of Jack’s special magic… “Your life will be played back at the judgment. Will your name be in the Book of Life? This title is a worldwide favorite, with over 60 million sold in 65 languages!” Here’s Jack’s catalog of comics
July 22, 2000
[comics] A review of the latest Preacher collectionAll Hell’s a-Coming. ‘The characters continue to be chipped away at: Custer lost his eye in the previous volume, having it sucked out of its socket by God. We lose pretty much all the sympathy we had for Cassidy, and Starr, the most powerful man in the world, having lost not only an eye, all his hair and a leg, now loses his genitals to an attack dog. “My cock is in the bitch’s mouth,” he says, “and not in a good way.”‘
July 20, 2000
[comics] The Dave Sim Memorial Note From The President Archive — a collection of writings from the creator of Cerebus. Sim on Superman: “Superman, as originally conceived, as a force for the common man, as an answer to the mindless tyranny with which his name (as a term) had come to be identified, as a foe of corruption and injustice, as the embodiment of FDR-style liberalism and the epitome of the notion that one individual can, should and must, of necessity, make a difference; in all this Superman … Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster’s Superman… the only true Superman… stands as a beacon of freedom shining as brightly for an adult who holds the ideals of the character sacred as he does for a child seeing him and learning them for the first time. As a symbol of the nearly limitless power of imagination, he has inspired creators for five decades to take up pen and brush in pursuit of excellence, to weave our tapestry once more. To aspire; that one day we might know a tenth… a hundredth of the greatness implied in knowing you are Jerry Siegel. You are Joe Shuster. You are the creators of Superman. And that no monumental and tragic injustice can strip you of that mantle. As comic book creators, this is our greatest heritage… and our greatest debt.” [via Come in Alone]
July 18, 2000
[comics] Frank Miller is apparently going to do a comic book about the life of Jesus. Can you imagine it? [via The Warren Ellis Forum]
July 17, 2000
[comics] I Just Type points out that I maybe wrong about Stan Lee and that the X-Men movie had a good opening weekend….
July 15, 2000
[weblogs] Every wondered what the word Barbelith means? Grant Morrison: “The word ‘BARBELiTH’ is derived from a dream I had when I was about 20 or 21 and coincided with my first structured ‘magical’ experiences and a minor nervous breakdown (in the dream, BARBELiTH was the name of some higher dimension or alternate reality). Like a lot of stuff in INVISIBLES I used the name unconsciously when I needed something to call the red circle that represents our Universe’s placental twin. I’d taken the etymology as far as ‘bearded stone’, which seems much less interesting and less weirdly appropriate than ‘alien stone’. My real life is getting more like the comic every day (in ways I should have suspected but didn’t really expect on this scale). There’s more on the red circle and its many meanings in DOOM PATROL #54, I just realised. That issue was written in near-trance so fuck only knows what’s been trying to get through all these years.”
[comics] Yet another interview with Warren Ellis“I suspect that, to successfully write superhero books through your thirties and forties, you either have to have genuine brain damage — Grant Morrison and Alan Moore come to mind — or be genuinely infantile. Grant and Alan and a bunch of others write great superhero comics because they are mad and that sick energy infuses the work. Too many others look more and more to me like confused, ageing writers-become-hacks making a vampiric living off the young. I’d rather not end up as the comics version of Art Linkletter. Or Krusty The Klown.”
July 14, 2000
[comics] The wisdom of Preacher“I mean look at me: My head looks like a penis, I’ve got one leg, one ear, one eye, and my cock’s been replaced with a rubber tube.”
July 12, 2000
[comics] I’m trying to avoid the X-Men but Salon profiles Stan Lee and manages to mention Jack Kirby. It quite literally amazes me that the media still believe the myth that Lee created most of the Marvel characters. Lee was just the editor of those comics. “Jack Kirby returned to the company that year and, lore has it, found Lee sobbing while movers took the furniture out of Marvel’s offices.” [via Slashdot]
July 9, 2000
[comics] Ramblings 2000 the comic book industry news and rumours column is dead. Rich Johnstone’s column has moved to Next Planet Over“WELCOME, SWINE. Hello, my name’s Rich Johnston, and I’ve sold out.”
July 8, 2000
[comics] Warren Ellis discusses if corporate-owned comic icons like Batman should be “saved”. ‘Superheroes are ultimately difficult to take seriously. And a mass audience wants, on some level, to take its mass-market violent action entertainment with a degree of seriousness. And what we’re talking about here is a virgin who can run up walls after being bitten by a nuked spider and a bald rich single old man who lives in a big remote house with his leather-clad “students.”‘
July 7, 2000
[Buy This Comic] One of the finest mainstream comics ever published. I love this comic, I hate this comic… Batman: Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller. [Review] “This should be agony. I should be a mass of aching muscles… broken, spent, unable to move… and, were I an older man, I surely would… but I’m a man of thirty… of twenty again… The rain on my chest is a baptism… I am born again.”
July 1, 2000
[comics] Buy this comic: Hicksville by Dylan Horrocks. Here’s a review
June 29, 2000
[comics] Excellent Sequential Tart interview with Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon. “Oh, yeah, why do I hate the Internet. I don’t really hate the Internet. I mean, you’ve got to remember that a lot of people probably see the comments I make on the side in the Preacher letter columns. And, uh, it’s possibly understandable that they take it more seriously than the rest of [what they hear]. I’m sure the Internet is an incredibly useful tool. I’m not likely to use it any time in the immediate future because I don’t have a computer.”
June 28, 2000
[comics] Great site… The Periodic Table of Comic Books.
June 27, 2000
[books] Interesting interview with Alex Garland author of The Beach. Covers the story’s origins as a comic book… . “He had drawn a 60-page comic book, a noir-ish tale based on his experiences in the Far East. He had a go at translating it into a novel. The origins of The Beach, which is written like a sequence of discrete man-on-a-desert-island cartoons, remain apparent. Its comic-book blueprint helps to account for its storytelling pace, and why even in quite horrific and bloody scenes there is a Pulp Fiction element of slapstick.”
[comics] Great two part interview of Grant Morrison in Sequential Tart: [Part One] [Part Two] ‘It lets your head expand and it also throws you on your mettle. I always travel on my own and you find yourself in the middle of Bangkok and you think ‘what do I do?’ and that’s a great feeling to have – you solve it and you go about the world feeling fantastic because no-one knows who you are and no ones putting any personality on you – you can swam into any place and say ‘I’m James Bond!” (laughs)’ — GM on travel.
June 26, 2000
[comics] The New York Times on the problems facing the comics industry. ‘Even the staunchest supporters of comic books say that the industry is facing problems in everything from production to distribution to marketing. There are no hard and fast figures for the industry. Publishers and distributors are secretive about sales. In fact, the only figure that insiders agree upon is the number of comic-book stores. Today, there are fewer than 4,000, down from more than 10,000 during the comic boom in the mid-90’s. “I think people like comics as much as ever, but now it’s very difficult to buy them,” said Stan Lee, creator of Spider-Man and an icon in the industry. “There used to be so many places to buy comic books; there used to be a corner store in every city.”‘
[comics] According to Ain’t it Cool News Frank Miller may be teaming up with Darren Aronofosky for the next Batman film. [via Ghost in the Machine]
June 25, 2000
[reading] Buy this comic: From Hell by Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell. Here’s a review from Salon. ‘As ambitious and affecting as anything ever rendered in pictures and word balloons, “From Hell” combines an intricate mystery, insightful social criticism and unflinching brutality capable of unnerving the most desensitized pop audience. It’s publication as a book promises to give it a new lease on life. That’s what happened with Art Spiegelman’s Pulitzer-Prize winning “Maus,” which was originally published in installments in the arty comic “Raw.” “From Hell” is the only graphic novel since “Maus” to rival its ambition and historical depth.’
June 24, 2000
[comics] Warren Ellis talks about the best comics you don’t read. ‘Harvey Pekar is as fucked a human as you’ll find, put bluntly. And he’s honest about it.’
June 23, 2000
[comics] The Washington Post on Marvel’s new range of comics aimed at kids. ‘Ralph Mathieu first got hooked on the Flash when he was 13 and has read comics the 25 years since. Now the owner of Alternate Reality Comics in Las Vegas, he believes that no matter how good comics are, convincing large numbers of kids and teens is an uphill battle. “Sadly, the number of kids who’ll pick reading for entertainment over video games, renting movies, the countless channels television offers, or the Internet, is a very small fraction,” he says. “I also think that today, more then ever, kids and teens regard superhero comics as geeky.’
June 20, 2000
[comics] The Guardian’s Steve Bell on the deaths in Dover. [Earlier BBC News Story]
June 16, 2000
[comics] The art of Dave McKean. Really great looking site.
June 15, 2000
[comics] August’s Preview Picks — good list of the best comics out in August.
June 14, 2000
[comics] Salon reports that Lex Luthor is to run for president. [via Ghost in the Machine]
June 11, 2000
[comics] Nice summary/FAQ about Kevin Smith’s comics from ViewAskew
June 10, 2000
[comics] Warren Ellis interviews Grant Morrison. “Fans of comics like INVISIBLES and JLA may be interested to know that I was Mr. DeFalco’s unwilling ‘bitch’ for most of the late 80s. Because I was quite young-looking and fairly skinny, I could quickly be done up with a bit of curtain as an ideal ‘visiting niece’ whenever one of Tom’s morbid testosterone build-ups was giving him grief.”
June 9, 2000
[comics] Yesterday was a good day to visit a comic shop…. The first issue of Grant Morrison’s Marvel Boy came out along with Scott McCloud’s Reinventing Comics. “Comics offers a medium of enormous breadth an control for the author — a unique intimate relationship with it’s audience — and a potential so great, so inspiring, yet so brutally squandered, it could bring a tear to the eye.”Scott McCloud
June 8, 2000
[comics] Grant Morrison issues a call to arms. “This is simple: if you really hate comics so badly you want to see them die, then keep filling the message boards with frustrated, ignorant bile (I’ve been reading some of this stuff and a lot of guys out there really need to get laid or take up meditation). Otherwise, let’s have a momentary ceasefire to figure out ways of rebuilding the profile of the entire comics medium. The responsibility is with us; we all know how awful it is and how crap comics are. We’ve all heard that tired old song of self-loathing long enough and it’s getting to be a real drag. If you think there’s no hope then please f*** off, die quietly and prove yourself right.” [via Barbelith]
June 7, 2000
[comics] Great Steve Bell Cartoon on Elitism and William Hague in the Guardian today. “I, Commonsense Man shall wreak vengence on the Liberal elite”
[comics] Warren Ellis asks: Why Comics? “Comics are just words and pictures. You can do anything with words and pictures.”Harvey Pekar.
June 6, 2000
[comics] Bill Clinton tells Russia that he had in the past a used comic book business: “”In my lifetime, I probably had ? earned money doing 20 or 25 different things. I’ve built houses, I’ve cleared land, I’ve worked in a grocery store. I had a used comic book business. Obviously, I was a musician. I made money as a musician. I’ve been a teacher. I’ve done a lot of different things in my life.”” Totally weird if it’s true… [via Ghost in the Machine]
June 5, 2000
[comics] Yet another Dave Sim Misogyny Page. “Behind this…lies the Greater Void, the Omnivorous Engine which drives every… institutionalised waste of human time and energy, which drives, in point of fact, our entire degraded society. The wife and kids.”
June 4, 2000
[comics] newsUnlimited profiles Steve Bell. “Steve has the idea, writes the words, does the drawing. He can do leader- page cartoons which – in their infinite detail – look as though they must be condensed versions of a much bigger cartoon. (Not so: what you see is virtually the size you get.) He can do illustrations that can dominate a whole page. And then there are the strips. Then there is If?”
June 3, 2000
[comics] Alan Moore discusses the plot to the unfinished Big Numbers. [Part One] [Part Two]
June 2, 2000
[comics] The Grand Comic Book Database — These people take their comic books seriously!
June 1, 2000
[comics] newsUnlimited talks to Alan Moore. “‘I can remember the exact panel during the writing of From Hell when I became interested in magic,’ he says. ‘Gull says that one place that gods inarguably exist is in the human mind. I wrote that sentence, and noticed the word ‘inarguable’, which is quite a big word, and that was the beginning of the end. I thought, ‘I can’t see why that isn’t true. And if it is true, then I’m probably going to have to change the whole of my life to fit around it.'”
May 31, 2000
[comics] Dork is one of my very favourite comics. You can find more from Evan Dorkin at the House of Fun. [voice-in-head: must…. buy… Eltingville T-Shirt!!]
May 30, 2000
[comics] Nicely designed comic site: Alex Tam’s Starman Compendium.
May 29, 2000
[comics] Alan Moore in Love. “Oh, Darling? I know it’s difficult for you! It’s difficult for ME, as well! I mean, you ARE married, and English, and you have two lovely daughters my age, and you seem to think you can levitate, and you’re always talking about your birth caul, and you haven’t had a haircut since Elvis was popular, and you produce a ten page book of footnotes after every date, and I have so little to offer a man like you?!” [via Adventures At 50 Feet]
May 28, 2000
[comics] Alan Moore asks What is reality?
May 27, 2000
[comics] Rich Johnson on The Cult of Warren Ellis. “And the thin and wiry Our Lord Warren Ellis was no longer thin and wiry, and started to buy Armani suits and some of his followers thought to themselves, hang on, he’s raking it in with this Excalibur lark.”
May 26, 2000
[comics] Excellent Daredevil website [via pearls that are his eyes]
May 25, 2000
[comics] Cool Beans! There’s a new issue of Stray Bullets out…
May 24, 2000
[comics] Frank Miller talks about the sequel to Dark Knight Returns.
May 23, 2000
[comics] Nicely illustrated Eddie Campbell interview. “[…]but I would say that the impetus to draw these pages derives from an urge to record the world around me, to record a little piece of now and save it for tomorrow. “
May 22, 2000
[comics] Old Warren Ellis interview. “Hm. Jamie’s one with the monkey was brilliant. The first episode of his FEAR MACHINE sequence was marvellously solid, too. Several of Garth’s issues were standouts, including the Special, “Confessional.” Gaiman’s “Hold Me” was, to my mind, one of the most honest and natural things he’s ever done, certainly among his best work. I’d be hard pressed to choose a single issue.” – what’s his favourite issue of Hellblazer.
May 21, 2000
[comics] Adrian Tomine’s diary on Slate explains why cartooning is better than a real job: “Producing an issue of my comic book is a slow, arduous process, and right now I’m a little more than halfway done with Issue 7. Last night I spent more than an hour tinkering with one line of dialogue. I tried five or six different variations, finally settling on the simplest and shortest: “What the hell’s your problem?” Brilliant, huh?”