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Archive >> December 2009

Upcoming in MOME
Written by Eric Reynolds | Filed under Nate NealMomeJosh Simmons 15 Dec 2009 7:49 AM

2010 will mark the fifth year of our anthology MOME and we've got some good stuff lined up for the next few issues. We just sent MOME 18 (Spring 2010) to the printer and are already prepping MOME 19 (Summer 2010), and I thought I'd share the covers to both. 

The MOME 18 cover is by Nate Neal, who delivers "The Neurotic Nexus of Creation," a 15-page explication of the creative process that calls to mind his "Reality Comics Quartet" from MOME 12. The MOME 19 cover is by Josh Simmons, and the issue will feature the first part of his psychedelic extravaganza "The White Rhinoceros," written by co-conspirator The Partridge In a Pear Tree.

I don't want to give up too much about either issue, but MOME 18 also includes the first new comic in several years by Dave Cooper, the MOME debuts of Tim Lane, Ivan Brun, Joe Daly, and Jon Adams, as well as returning stalwarts Lilli Carré, Ben Jones, Frank Santoro, Jon Vermilyea, Nicolas Mahler, Ted Stearn, Renée French, Conor O'Keefe, Derek Van Gieson, and T. Edward Bak. 

MOME 19 will have some very exciting surprises, including an all-new, 12-page story by some guy named Gilbert Hernandez, as well as returning regulars such as Dash Shaw, Tom Kaczynski, and Olivier Schrauwen. Plus, an amazing 21-page debut by Seattle cartoonist DJ Bryant, riffing on an old horror comic by Steve Ditko. 

I recently calculated that with MOME 18, we have now published over 2000 pages of comics in the series over the last four and half years (2109, to be exact). By our count, this may be a record for an English-language alternative comics anthology (and no, I'm not counting Dark Horse Presents).

UPDATE: Olivier Schrauwen has a preview page up from his 25-page story for MOME 19 here. This guy is amazing.

Gahan Wilson LIVE at 10AM PST today!
Written by Eric Reynolds | Filed under Gahan Wilson 15 Dec 2009 7:43 AM

Gahan Wilson will be appearing LIVE -- and answering your questions -- at 10AM west coast time this morning on Bob Andelman's excellent Mr. Media podcast. If you can't listen live, the show will be archived here after the fact. 

Alec Baldwin & Peanuts
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under PeanutsComing Attractions 15 Dec 2009 12:23 AM

We've received a few questions about our announcement last week that Alec Baldwin will contribute an Introduction to an upcoming volume of The Complete Peanuts. The idea was inspired by this Vanity Fair "Proust Questionnaire" with Baldwin from earlier this year, wherein Baldwin names Charlie Brown his "hero of fiction." So there you go.

Confidential to Gary Groth: here's a suggestion for another 30 Rock star to write a Peanuts intro sometime in the future (found while researching this post):

Tina Fey in a Snoopy t-shirt

Additional TCJ.com ribbon-cutting
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under The Comics JournalGary Groth 14 Dec 2009 11:01 PM
In addition to our previously posted official news-type announcement of the "hard launch" of the new Comics Journal website at TCJ.com, TCJ Executive Editor Gary Groth has composed an introductory hail-fellow-well-met-cum-statement of purpose titled "Welcome to TCJ.com and Oh, By the Way, A Brief History of Comics Criticism While I'm At It" which is well worth your attention. It's downright inspirational, I tells you.
Doin' It Well - The Hard Launch of TCJ.com
Written by Jacq Cohen | Filed under The Comics Journal 14 Dec 2009 9:27 PM

The under-construction tarp wasn’t even off and The Comics Journal’s new website started sending ripples through the blogosphere. It’s still growing with new features being added almost daily, but check out the site’s hard launch today, Monday Dec. 14, and experience what everybody’s talking about. See top-tier critics R. Fiore and R. C. Harvey duke it out over 9 Chickweed Lane; Anne Ishii and Roland Kelts on the industry and aesthetics of manga; blogging by Shaenon Garrity; reviews of The Wolverton Bible and Junko Mizuno’s latest; a critical dissection of Gilbert Hernandez’s erotic Birdland; and essays and columns by Jeet Heer, Kim Deitch, Donald Phelps. AND: Noah Berlatsky’s Hooded Utilitarian. Jared Gardner’s GutterGeek. News by Eric Millikin. And yes, Virginia, Kenneth Smith blogs!

“If the new TCJ means that we get R. Fiore around more often, it's going to be hard not to enjoy the new TCJ.” – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Hans Rickheit's Ectopiary
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under webcomicsHans Rickheit 14 Dec 2009 6:20 PM

from Ectiopiary by Hans Rickheit

Ectopia, Hans Rickheit's in-progress graphic novel following The Squirrel Machine, is well underway, and he is presenting it as a serialized webcomic, posting a new page each week at its own dedicated website. Learn more about the book-to-be here, and start reading page 1 here.

Daily OCD: 12/14/09
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Zak SallyTim LaneThe Comics JournalSteve DitkoRobert WilliamsRobert CrumbPrince ValiantPortable GrindhousePopeyePeter BaggeMomeMiss Lasko-GrossMichael KuppermanLove and RocketsLos Bros HernandezLilli Carrélife imitates comicsKim DeitchKevin HuizengaJohnny RyanJohn PhamJim WoodringJim BlanchardJasonJaime HernandezJacques TardiJacques BoyreauHumbugHans RickheitGabrielle BellFemke HiemstraFantagraphics historyFantagraphics BookstoreEC SegarDrew FriedmanDaniel ClowesCarol TylerBrian KaneBlake BellBest of 2009Basil WolvertonAnders NilsenAl Columbia 14 Dec 2009 6:04 PM

Oh man these Online Commentary & Diversions links really pile up:

List: The Daily Cross Hatch presents The Best Damned Comics of 2009 Chosen by the Artists, this year's edition of their essential annual survey of comics pros' top 5 comics. I won't quote all the lists' commentary here since that would steal some of their thunder (not to mention take me all night), but Pim & Francie by Al Columbia merits 5 mentions; You'll Never Know, Book 1 by C. Tyler is on 3 lists; The Squirrel Machine by Hans Rickheit, Tales Designed to Thrizzle Vol. 1 by Michael Kupperman, Like a Dog by Zak Sally, Prison Pit Book 1 by Johnny Ryan, Everybody Is Stupid Except for Me by Peter Bagge are all mentioned twice; and The Wolverton Bible, Locas II by Jaime Hernandez, Humbug, Popeye Vol. 4, Low Moon by Jason, You Are There by Tardi & Forest, A Mess of Everything by Miss Lasko-Gross, Prince Valiant Vol. 1, Strange Suspense: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 1, and Lilli Carré's work in Mome all show up once each (plus a couple of 2008 releases like Zak Sally's Sammy the Mouse #2 and Bottomless Belly Button by Dash Shaw sneak in there)

List: Details magazine names Ghost World #10 on The 25 Greatest Gen X Books of All Time: "This caustically funny duo-tone tale follows the iconic cat-eyed adolescent Enid Coleslaw in her quest to find meaning, or at least cruel humor, in an age where everything's disposable."

Review: "Strange Suspense collects dozens of Ditko stories from the 1950’s... Almost a decade before Ditko moved to Marvel, these stories bear his unmistakable style. His fine line work and flair for the abstract that would serve him so well on Doctor Strange particularly, is on full display. ... If you only know Ditko for his work at Marvel or later at DC, here is the chance to explore Early Ditko, unconstrained by editors or the Comics Code. While all of this work is marvelous, clearly Ditko is best at home in horror where he could let his imagination run wild, creating monsters and demons and the things that go bump in the night. Rediscover Ditko today!" – Tim Janson, Newsarama

Review: "Brian Kane, author of the [Definitive Prince Valiant] Companion and surely the world’s foremost authority on the strip and its creator, Hal Foster, has once again done a herculean amount of work, and Fantagraphics has once again clothed that work in a sturdy, pretty volume. Prince Valiant hasn’t been treated this well since the ersatz King of England sang his praises. Those unfamiliar with the character – a young man who finds adventure, fame, and even love at the court of the legendary King Arthur – will find here all the background information they could ever want... But even long-time Prince Valiant fans will find plenty to fascinate them in this volume." – Khalid Ponte, Open Letters

Review: "Delphine is a morbid interpretation of the symbology of fairy tales resounding with echoes of unrequited love and abandonment. This is perhaps Sala’s darkest and most intricate story ever – impressive in its nuance and ever shifting emotions. One can only hope that it is not ignored." – Ng Suat Tong, The Comics Journal

Review: At The Hooded Utilitarian (a TCJ.com-hosted blog), reviewer Kinukitty kicks off a critical roundtable on Daniel Clowes's Ghost World on a contrarian note

Plug: "Just got Strange Suspense: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol 1. Faaaaantastic! ... Raw and grotesque and beautifully drawn and presented." – Dave Gibbons (via consecutive Twitter posts)

Plug: Los Angeles Magazine highlights Conceptual Realism by Robert Williams and Sublife Vol. 2 by John Pham in their monthly roundup of books of local interest

Plug: Mike Sterling presents a brilliant panel from Popeye Vol. 4 and declares re: the book "Comics don't get much better than this."

Plug: Alison Nastasi of Horror Squad calls Portable Grindhouse: The Lost Art of the VHS Box "a tasty opus" and plugs last weekend's Fantagraphics Bookstore events

Plug: Boing Boing "Boing Boings" the Femke Hiemstra exhibit at Roq la Rue

Events: The Seattle Times' Christy Karras talks to participants in yesterday's Portable Grindhouse panel discussion at Fantagraphics Bookstore and makes the case for Seattle as Zombie City U.S.A.

Analysis: Hypergeek crunches direct market sales data and declares Strange Suspense: The Steve Ditko Archives Vol. 1 the top small-press trade for November 2009, with Pim & Francie by Al Columbia ranking at #12

Interview: From TCJ.com: "Every weekday from now until December 25, we’ll be posting a conversation between cartoonists from The Comics Journal #300, complete and online! In today’s installment, it’s a chat between L’Association publisher Jean-Christophe Menu and Kramers Ergot publisher Sammy Harkham."

History: Love & Maggie rounds up the history of Love and Rockets 1979-1982 — even Gary Groth is impressed!

Things to see: Tim Lane's Temptations diorama... completed? Oops, no, there's an audience in progress

* Things to see: Johnny Ryan did some gag cartoons for a girlie calendar from streetwear purveyors Mishka

Things to see: An advertisement from Anders Nilsen

Things to see: At his blog, Drew Friedman pays birthday tribute to old Jewish comedian Morey Amsterdam

Things to see: The Huffington Post has a previously unseen 1968 photo of R. Crumb by photojournalist Harry Benson

Things to see: Vince Lombardi by Jim Blanchard (for his pa, aw!)

Things to see: The newest strip from Gabrielle Bell guest-stars Kim Deitch & Pam Butler

Things to see: Kevin Huizenga's "Postcard from Fielder" part 2

Life imitates comics: Failed Russian missile test or event from Jim Woodring's Weathercraft? You decide

Tony Millionaire's Crazy Bird tweets
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Tony MillionairepreviewsComing Attractions 14 Dec 2009 4:26 PM

page from Billy Hazelnuts and the Crazy Bird by Tony Millionaire

First, so as not to bury the lede: Tony Millionaire is on Twitter. This is major. So far he is on a roll; among his postings is this sneak peek at the long-awaited sequel to the Eisner-winning Billy Hazelnuts, Billy Hazelnuts and the Crazy Bird, due this Summer.

Dash Shaw's Haunted High School for Vice
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Dash Shaw 14 Dec 2009 3:35 PM

from Dash Shaw's Haunted High School

I can barely keep up with Dash Shaw today! "The Haunted High School," a 5-page story he did for the Vice fiction issue, is now online.

Dash Shaw Sundance Institute announcement update
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under hooray for HollywoodDash Shaw 14 Dec 2009 3:20 PM

Slobs and Nags model sheet

On his blog, Dash Shaw provides more information about and some preliminary artwork from Slobs and Nags, the film that he has been selected to attend the January Sundance Institute Screenwriters Lab to develop (first announcement here; additional coverage from /Film): the film will be produced by Howard Gertler and John Cameron Mitchell, and the project reunites Dash with the creative team behind The Unclothed Man in the 35th Century A.D. with the addition of Frank Santoro. To quote Dash: "Yay!"


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