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23 December 2012

Other Comics News Parade-O-Links 12232012

(EC Johnny Craig parody cover by the great Ben Towle stolen from the great Ben Towle.)

Here are some things I found interesting in the world of minicomics, comic books, graphic novels, small press, self publishing, zines, webcomics, cartoons, digital comics, other, etc. during the week ending 12232012:

"I know I was initially extremely perplexed by the entire endeavor, and then pretty quickly disappointed to see that they were doing this dramatic once-in-a-lifetime move, this unique opportunity to refurbish their whole line and orient it towards appealing to new readers and, rather than seeking out kids, or female readers, or casual readers, or the manga or YA audiences or even just people who grew out of the sorts of '90s-era Marvel/Image comics DC ended up publishing, they had instead set their sites on people who played the Batman: Arkham Ayslum videogames. 
And that's a big, lucrative market; maybe big enough to make the pursuit of it ultimately worthwhile. But it still perplexes me that rather than trying for a transmedia approach, trying to align their comics line with the many successful cartoons they've had on Cartoon Network and, before that, Fox in the last, God, 20 years or so now, from Batman: The Animated Series to Justice League and Teen Titans to Young Justice and The Brave and The Bold and those cute little shorts they're doing now, they instead leaned hard towards the sort of aesthetic and storytelling of those Arkham videogames, the upcoming Justice League-by-way-of Mortal Kombat game Injustice, and, to a certain, lesser, extent, Smallville. 
The "New 52" basically just makes me sad and exhausted at this point."  - J. Caleb Mozzocco.
  • Jumpin' Jimminy Christmas Balls everybody.  It's almost that time.  Santa is on his way.  Unless you were bad.  Remember what uncle Buckaroo says boys and girls, "don't be mean".
  • To kick this sucker into the holiday spirit I recommend you go to my pal Robert Newome's internet word posting location and download the Christmas song collections he made for you.  Not just one, but two!  Fifty fantastic songs  to get your Christmas party started. 
  • And speaking of my pal Robert Newome, he done ready edited up and printed a new issue of his The Atomic Elbow wrestling zine for you to read and cherish.  This issue, number four for the fans of counting things, contains an interview with one of my favorite comics artists/cartoonists/writers/illustrators and wrestling gear designers Jill Thompson.  And some thing from Comics Alliance's Chris Sims.  And comics!  And other things.  Other things people!
(Image of a small boy choking a professional wrestler to death stolen from
  • Here is a great article about one of my fave wrasslers, Danile Bryan, visiting a young boy who is battling cancer.  Watch the video too.  It's pretty great. I'm gonna use the word great a lot today.
  • Since it is "the holidays", North America's greatest comics blogger Tom Spurgeon has started his series of holiday interviews.  He's up to number 6 as I type this.  I've read every word of the first 5 and they were great.  You really need to do yourself a favor and read them.  Even if you are not familiar with any of the subjects, Mr. Spurgeon, does a great job of getting at the unique perspectives that make each of his subjects interesting and each of the interviews relative to the year in comics that is coming to a close.  The Spurge gots big brains y'alls. Go read that stuff.  Now, the Spurge can't be bothered with silly intronet devices like labels and tags so I don't have one specific link to give you that will allow you to read just the interviews.  I suggest you just go to The Comics Reporter and use that little wheel thing in the middle of your mouse to scroll down until you see them all.  Easy as fruit cake. 

(American Elf strip stolen from American Elf.)

...was Patrick Dean's Big Deal Comics & Stories Issue #12 "A Weekend at the Atwood".  And it's one of the best new print comics I've read all year.  For one thing, Patrick Dean drew it and he is just the best people.  Love every single panel.  For another thing, Patrick Dean wrote it and he is just the best people.  Love every single line.  This comic is about a ghost convention at an abandoned motel.  It turns out that ghosts really need a break from living people getting all up in their business all the time so they like to party it up in abandoned places from time to time to get away from it all.  One of the things I love about Dean's comics is the huge casts and all the distinct dialog we get from each character.  And hearing all these ghosts vent about their causes of death and the tedium of their hauntings is hilarious. "AVENGE ME! AVENGE ME! AVENGE ME! But does anyone ever avenge me?  Nope."  There are also some great gags about ghosts messing with "ghost hunters" and tapping out a morse code saying "Kiss my balls".  Good stuff.  And yeah it's all about ghosts and dead people issues so it's kind of morbid but it's fun.  Ghosts is people too ya know. 
I also read Dean's Big Deal Comics and Stories #11 "Sometimes I Think About You at Night" this week and it was just as good or better than #12.  I gave the advantage to #12 because it was newer, longer and a bit funnier but #11 might be the best Patrick Dean comic I've read.  Maybe.  I'd have to go back and re-read the whole bunch to make sure.  But it is great.  It shows another ensemble cast dealing with the anxiety of sleeping alone at night after having a relationship fall apart.  Heavy stuff but still, hilarious.  This is a comic where a giant wears the roof of a grain silo as a hat.  It does not get much better than that.  My suggestion is that you go to Dean's store and buy all his comics.  It will be the smartest thing you do this or next year.  Oh, and one more thing you should do is go "like" the Big Deal Comics facebook page.  Dean has been posting lots of great strips and stuff there. 

  • And finally...Merry Christmas everybody!  Even if you don't celebrate Christmas I still wish you all the best.  Love and food and warmth and all that good stuff we all deserve.  Thanks for dropping by.

Oh, and one more last thing!  Did you know you can leave comments on these posts here at file under other?  It's true!  And, I'll probably respond.  Twitter and facebook killed the message boards but that's no reason why you can't argue with me, praise me or leave me recipes.  It's your intronet.  Have fun!

And that's just a taste of some of the interesting things going out there in the wonderful world of comics and things. I can't keep up with it all but I do keep up with a lot of it on twitter and I try to re-tweet the good stuff. You should probably follow me there. If you did something to make comics better this week then high-five!

Your best pal ever,

Shannon Smith

p.s. Say you want a leader but you can't seem to make up your mind. I think you'd better close it and let me guide you to my twitter feed.
p.p.s. Let's pretend we went to high school together on facebook.
p.p.p.s. Google + is another place you can read the same thing I posted here.
p.p.p.p.s. I'll tumblr for ya.
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