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Give the Gift of Comics

Posted by Tom Mason Categories: Action Figures, Editorials, Reviews

SkippyLooking for something to get your comic book fan for the Holidays? It's a tricky business. Comic book fans often have the stuff you'd want to give them or may not like the thing you want them to have. So it requires a very thoughtful approach. Here are some places to help you out.

Action Figure Times has listed their Top 10 Christmas gifts for action figure fans. #1? Captain Action, simply one of the greatest action figures of all time.

Forces of Geek has unleashed their Holiday Gift Guide.

And John Scalzi’s reader-driven gift guide is essential for finding stuff that’s off the beaten path.

The grand master of all holiday gift guides is, of course, Tom Spurgeon at The Comics Reporter. His is full of win.

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Kickstarter: A Geek’s Journal 1976

Posted by Tom Mason Categories: Editorials

Geek's JournalI’m a geek and I certainly was in high school.

My life was full of comics, television, and all the usual school stuff. Unfortunately, I didn’t write any of my life down at the time. But I know a guy who did: Steven Thompson, the creator of the popular pop-culture blog Booksteve’s Library, wrote it all down in 1976 and kept it up.

He recently discovered his old diary and posted it on the internet, one entry per day along with modern commentary as the author looked back on his teenaged life.

It’s a funny, fascinating look at one fan’s life, as he tries to get something going with girls, hangs out with friends, goes to concerts, buys records and comics, watches television and masturbates (yep, he goes there).

Click to continue reading Kickstarter: A Geek’s Journal 1976

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Weekend Reading: John Carter, Captain Underpants & Stieg Larsson

Taylor KitschGreetings, Weekenders! Still up in arms about DC’s new logo? The wrongness of SOPA/PIPA? Forget it. Let’s just enjoy the internets while they’re still free:

The John Carter Files poses some questions about the upcoming John Carter movie.

Two new Captain Underpants books by Dav Pilkey are coming in 2012.

Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is getting the graphic novel treatment via DC Comics (and their Vertigo imprint). Denise Mina - no slouch as a mystery novelist - is writing with Leonardo Manco, art is by Andrea Mutti, but just check out the kick-ass cover by Lee Bermejo. Omnimystery has all the deets.

Click to continue reading Weekend Reading: John Carter, Captain Underpants & Stieg Larsson


Weekend Reading: Blackbeard, Superman, Toth & Guindon

PopeyeI was saddened to hear about the recent death of comics historian Bill Blackbeard. Tom Spurgeon had recently written about him and how he deserved a spot in the Eisner’s Hall of Fame this year. That prompted me to (1) agree immediately with Tom and then (2) write about my own dealings with Mr. Blackbeard.

I didn’t know that by then he had already passed. Tom has the best obituary, if such things can be defined by that term.

Fantagraphics’ Gary Groth shares some personal memories plus tributes from others.

Sparkplug has an interview with him from a while ago that’s first rate.

What a heartbreaker. The guy literally and single-handedly saved newspaper comics from the shredder of history.

Let’s see what else is out there:

Click to continue reading Weekend Reading: Blackbeard, Superman, Toth & Guindon


Weekend Reading: Cowboys & Aliens, Jacques Tardi And Adrienne Roy

Cowboys & AliensIt’s the week before Christmas for many people, and we begin, unfortunately, on a sad note. Veteran industry colorist Adrienne Roy passed away this week. ComicMix has the details of her long-running career as a colorist for hundreds of DC’s Bronze Age comics. I did not know that she was once voted "Most Beautifully Tattooed Female." She was well-known and highly-regarded, so there are certain to be other remembrances - like this one by Mark Evanier - around the internets.

Cowboys: Robert Orci talks about the upcoming Cowboys & Aliens movie, and Harrison Ford: “I’m assuming Spielberg called in some kind of a favor, because we were shocked to hear that he was interested.”

Crime: Novelist and funnybook writer Gary Phillips chooses his favorite crime and mystery graphic novels of 2010 for The Rap Sheet. Yes, Darwyn Cooke’s Parker: The Outfit is in there, but so’s a bunch of other cool stuff I need to check out now.

Click to continue reading Weekend Reading: Cowboys & Aliens, Jacques Tardi And Adrienne Roy


Comic Book Jobs: Who’s Hiring? Abrams Books!

Posted by Tom Mason Categories: Editorials

wimpykid

Abrams Books needs a “License And Brand Manager, Children’s Books” for their Amulet Books division as well as Abrams Books For Young Readers. If Amulet sounds familiar, it’s because they publish little things like, oh, Jeff Kinney’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid and the recently-released graphic novel for little kids, Fiona Robinson’s The 3-2-3 Detective Agency.

Looks like a nice place to work, plus, seriously, it’s Harry Abrams and while you’ll be working for Amulet Books, the parent company does a ton of great comics-related books for non-children. One of their most recent books is Secret Identity: The Fetish Art of Superman’s Co-creator Joe Shuster by Craig Yoe.

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SNEAK PEAK: Craig Yoe & Joe Shuster & Stan Lee

Posted by Tom Mason Categories: Reviews

secreiidentity
Craig Yoe has a knack for putting out great books – the second you hear the title of one of his books, you’ve just gotta have it. From BOODY: The Bizarre Comics of Boody Rogers (which will be published by Fantagraphics Books on March 1) to Clean Cartoonists’ Dirty Drawings which was published last October by Last Gasp, you know that Yoe is dealing with fascinating lost, forgotten or secret aspects of comic book/comic strip/cartoon history. Yoe has the gift, yo.

His latest book is Secret Identity: The Fetish Art of Superman’s Co-Creator Joe Shuster, and the material inside is quite a find. You can read online about the financial difficulties Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster encountered once they sold Superman to DC Comics and pursued options to get a piece of the multi-million pie their creation was soon to become. But by the 1950s, artist Shuster needed money. He took a job doing fetish illustrations – bondage, S&M, you name it - for an under-the-counter magazine called Nights Of Horror. There’s a sneak preview available online which is probably NSFW.

The whole sordid enterprise involved not just Shuster and the magazine, but a murder trial and Fredric Wertham (author of Seduction Of The Innocent). Oh, what a tangled web Yoe has uncovered! And you know you’re in good hands. Yoe’s won the Gold Medal from the Society of Illustrators, two Addys, the Mobius, and an Eisner Award and he’s got mad design skills as well.

The 160-page hardcover is scheduled for release on April 1 from Abrams ComicArts. Stan Lee wrote the introduction.


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