Notable Links for 03/22
So, we had a big comic convention this weekend in Los Angeles... and the apathy is resounding. Sure, no one's going to use Wizard World LA to break their big news, but come on - Rob Liefeld doing "X-Force" again? This is the best we got?
Time to bust out the cyanide capsules, people.
* Courtesy of the ever-courteous Neil Gaiman, we have news of a new law being considered in Canada, the innocuously-titled Bill C-12. In an attempt to crack down on the unrelenting tide of child pornography being sold through mainstream book vendors, the law would remove the "artistic merit" defense from any book accused of containing child pornography - leaving it to the Judges' discrection to decide whether or not the specific works fulfil a requirement for "public good." Besides the usual suspects ("Lolita" in all its incarnations) this is a risky proposition for any number of comics - from Alan Moore's "League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" to, conceivably, Gaiman's own "Sandman", and even more "innocuous" fare like "Chobits" or "Ultimate Spider-Man." It's just a bad thing all around. Anyway, you can read a much more detailed look at the proposed legislation here, courtesy of that wily Bookninja.
* Everyone who was worried that new Image publisher Erik Larsen would refocus the line exclusively on spandex and adventure books can take a sigh of relief: the first major new project announced by the Larsen-led Image is actually a prestigious Indie-oriented anthology called "Flight." Comic Book Resources has the news here, and they also have an old write-up on the project from back in February, before the series had a publisher, here.
* "Now you can get your daily 'Garfield' fix from the home or office, thanks to GoComics' new network service. From your handset, you can download daily or weekly comic strips of popular comic strips like 'Garfield,' 'Ziggy,' FoxTrot,' and 'For Better or Worse.' GoComics' kick-off release is 'Best of GoComics,' which features the fan fave comic strips from the aforementioned series." Read more here, courtesy of IGN.
* The Times of India reports on the waning popularity of comic books and strips in India here.
* Congratulations to Scott Shaw! on reaching the 1000th online episode of "Oddball Comics" (and I have to say today's Oddball really is kinda weird). However, I have to ask... did you count repeats in your episode total? Huh, didja? Just kidding. Ccurtesy of Comic Book Resources.
* Also, congratulations are due Cincinnati Enquirer sports cartoonist Jerry Dowling for his induction to Cincinnati's Hockey Hall of Fame. Read more here, courtesy of Our Sports Central.
* "Cheap, readable, disposable - manga comic strip magazines are as much a part of Japanese life as sumo or sushi. Perfectly designed to distract from the discomfort of a long commute on a cramped train, they contain the wildest imaginable fantasies from violent pornography to science fiction." The BBC News takes alook at Manga here.
* The Southern Voice talks to political cartoonist Mike Luckovich here.
* The Chicago Sun-Times looks at Popeye's 75th Anniversary here.
* Johanna Draper Carlson has updated her "Comics Worth Reading" page with new reviews of ComicsOne's "Iron Wok Jan," Tokyopop's "Ai Yori Aoshi" & "COnfidential Confessions,", in addition to various Indie, DC, and Marvel titles. Man, this lady keeps busy - puts me to shame.
* "Feminist scholar Lillian Robinson, principal of Concordia's Simone de Beauvoir Institute, explores the role of female comic icons in her new book, Wonder Women: Feminisms and Superheroes, which hits bookstores tomorrow." Read more here, courtesy of the Montreal Gazette.
* The Carnegie Pulse review Marjane Satrapi's "Persepolis" here.
* Karen Ann C. Liquette of the Manilla Bulletin talks to Katherine and Kristine Cheng Chua about their recently-opened Manga store Central Comic Headquarters, in Quezon City, the Philippines, here.
* "Over the years, comic strip characters have emblazoned toys, lunch boxes and clothing, and two Westport residents are trying to add a new creation to the list. In the past 17 years, Bob Weber Jr., creator of 'Slylock Fox & Comics for Kids,' has seen the number of newspapers that subscribe to the comic strip grow to nearly 400 around the world. He has hired Walsh Public Relations on Church Lane to introduce his comic strip to the toy and clothing industry." Whatever happened to an educational property being somewhat sacrosanct? We never saw Mr. Rogers on lunchboxes... oh well. Read more here, courtesy of the Miami Herald.
* I can't decide whether this is A) condescending or B) actually an inspired tribute. U decide! Courtesy of Comic Book Resources.
* Courtesy of Michael Grabowski over at the Journal board, we have one of the most single-mindedly strange yet fascinating narratives in the history of the internet. Yes, that's right, a detailed look at the history of the Spider-Clone Saga. You know, this is scary, but scary in a fun way.
* "Five years of silence -- not even the courtesy of rejection letters -- to the art samples Brian Germain sent to comic publishing companies big and small took their toll in 1997, causing him to give up his dream." But - his dream did not give up on him (or something like that) - read more here, courtesy of the Flint Journal.
And that's that.