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by J. Parker Adair, special to The Beat
The Virgin Experience, Day Two [Saturday, April 14]
Whether you’re going to Disney World, a comic book convention or being drug to a shopping mall for a White Sale (whatever that is), it’s imperative you have a plan.
I had one of those for Saturday’s events at C2E2. It took less than an hour to completely forget it.
One of my big goals was to spend some time in the documentary room as there were some pretty cool screenings. The first one started at 11 a.m.; I never made it there.
Flash back to 9:30; we were way early after a morning panic. This time we had taken the C2E2 shuttle rather than the CTA bus. The shuttle pulled us right into the bat cave. Realizing we still had more than 30 minutes until the doors open, we avoided the cattle call line and went for breakfast at this fancy Scottish restaurant called “McDonald’s”.
Immediately after, I went to admire the bathroom. It was quite impressive with 20 urinals! [Editor's note: It was! I even took a picture!]
After some exploring, we discovered a mystical escalator that took us directly into the dealer room without having to go through the main entrance. It was an epic entrance as the crowd just appeared out of nowhere, not even noticing our conspicuous arrival.
Excited by my new environment, I must have dropped my plans on the escalator (or let them fly out of my brain), and I was in for … “The Day of the Dealers!” Dunn dun dunnnnnnn.
I brought $200 cash with me for the trip, anticipating spending a lot of time in panels and screenings and having no idea that the dealer room was the lost chapter of Homer’s Odyssey. By 1 p.m. it was all gone. I’m sure some of that was spent on food and cab fair, but most of it was spent on the floor.
Having run out of cash and smartly leaving my card in the room, I made my way down to the Quidditch demo. Being the Harry Potter nerd I am (for the midnight showing of “Half-Blood Prince” I dressed as Arthur Weasely dressed as a muggle). On my way down, I nearly got knocked over by a guy dressed in all gold, running up the stairs. Not at all abnormal, and I knew I was on the right path.
The game was pretty fun, but the best part came when members of the audience got to play. Oh, yeah! Having been a keeper in both soccer and lacrosse, I thought felt this was my strongest position. It was then I learned how much strategy there is in determining the line up for a quidditch match.
While I can now write a term paper on Quidditch coaching, I will leave out the boring details. I let in too many goals due to my inability to block the taller shots (I knew the Clean Sweep 5 was a bad broom choice) but ran the offense like NBA legend John Stockton. With the game in the balance, I decided to switch spots and play chaser. Clea
by Anthony Del Col
Batman now fights crimes in the Middle East. Well, he shows up at comic conventions here, at least.
This past weekend (April 20-21) I took part in the first-ever Middle East Film and Comic-Con (MEFCC), held in Dubai. I attended mainly to promote my IDW Publishing series Kill Shakespeare (along with my co-creator Conor McCreery) but I also went in a quest to answer a question I’ve been wondering: how big is the comic book culture in the Middle East?
The answer is: quite big. And it’s growing.
The event was organized by Ben Caddy and Arafaat Ali Khan of ExtraCake, a Dubai-based PR and events planning organization, who knew that there was a demand for something like this. Plus, they’re also huge comic geeks and gamers that really wanted an event like this to be held in Dubai that they themselves – and other geeks – could attend.
And attend they did. The show was packed on both the Friday and the Saturday (the two weekend days in the Middle East). The final attendance figure hasn’t been confirmed but Khan guessed that roughly 15,000 people attended. The Dubai International Marine Club (by the beautiful waterfront, of course) was packed with a great combination of people dressed in traditional Middle East garb, Western wear – and cosplayers (the highlight was the woman dressed up as Batwoman that combined the outfit with her traditional Iranian burqua).
It was a very diverse group of attendees. There were a lot of “ex-pats” at the show – people originally from the U.S. and Britain (which is on par for the general Dubai population). But a large contingent were from the Middle East area. I spoke to a lot of people who came from Saudi Arabia, unable to purchase any comics or graphic novels in their country (I hope that they didn’t have problems bringing the books back through their border people…). There were attendees from Kuwait, Bahrain, and other Emirates such as Abu Dhabi. I spoke from one woman who travelled all the way from Belgium to attend – she had been looking for an excuse to come to Dubai anyone and this provided the perfect opportunity.
I – along with all of the other North American creators – felt incredibly welcomed by everyone that attended. I was thanked by so many for coming all the way to their country. I was asked by many locals what I thought of Dubai. And Conor and I talked to a number of people who said that the show inspired them to pursue creating their own comic books, or even start their own comic book stores.
There are no comic book stores in Dubai and the Middle East but the bookstores do quite brisk comic and graphic novel business. One of our first stops upon arrival in Dubai was to check out Book World by Kinokuniya, at the Dubai Mall. This is the mall that is attached to the Burj Khalifa, the w
In awesome news, the Sparkplug Books Indiegogo campaign has reached its goal. But you can still give them more money to publish creator-owned, independent books that validate the spirit of the best that comics can be.
Once again, if everyone just gives the price of a single issue of AvX, Sparkplug will be able to do even more good things.
Think of it as karma and give.
Above: Art by Olga Volozova, whose The Golem of Gabirol will be one of the books funded.
By: Heidi MacDonald
Blog: PW -The Beat
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BY JEN VAUGHN - The date was December 9th, 2011 when cartoonist and Center for Cartoon Studies professor Alec Longstreth shaved off his beard and shaggy do. A promise to himself in 2008, he decided to chart his progress through pictures of his hair and beard growth, called The Basewood Beard, that would undoubtedly remind him daily of his commitment. Living in a small town with a beard as his shadow, Longstreth went from industrious Fellow of the school to an instructor of both summer workshops and graduate classes to the Acting Director (while James Sturm takes a much-needed sabbatical) . Even after all the excitement, he is still growing and evolving, deciding to learn watercolor on the side.
August 1st, 2008 and Alec doesn’t at all look like a prison inmate. He answered a lot of questions throughout the three years of hair growing: do you get food caught in there, is it hot, what does your family think? And he bore it all with quiet grace. But now that Basewood is done, he is moving on and was nice enough to answer some questions for The Beat! Venture on to read more about the amazing cartoonist Alec Longstreth. Now that you have lived through the coldest part of winter, do you miss your beard? I’ll admit, the beard did do an amazing job of keeping my face warm. I’ve tried a bunch of different scarves, and nothing even comes close to protecting my face like a bunch of long facial hair. That being said, I do not miss the beard. I’ll take that cold morning slap in the face, and gladly. The beard was a constant reminder to me about how long Basewood was taking, and that I needed to finish it. Now each morning when I head to the studio, the cold air against my face is a reminder to take everything I learned from Basewood and to apply it to my new projects.
It’s done! 100% of Basewood finished
You’ve mentioned your next project in your classes before but can you tell the public a bit what it is about? Well, I intend to keep self-publishing Phase 7 for the rest of my life. I’ve got all kinds of stories I will to tell, but the one I’m working on right now is a three-part story all about my favorite band Weezer (to be released in Phase 7). The other big project I’m working on is going to be a webcomic. It’s a fantasy story for kids with wizards and dragons and lots of bad puns. I’m currently workshopping the first storyline (about 100 pages) with the CCS seniors. Once I’ve gone through and tightened up the script, I’m going to build up a hefty lead before I start posting online, which will hopefully b
Live broadcast by Ustream
Stan Lee is chatting right now with Geoff Boucher at EPIX about his new movie With Great Power: The Stan Lee Story. Here’s the livestream in case this embed isn’t working.
by Genevieve Halton
This was my first trip to the city of Boston and their fantastic comic con and I have to say, I was impressed. Boston Comic Con had the staples: vendors offering collectibles, comics and original art. They had comedic performances and an art auction. Offering a very well balanced mix of artists from legends of the industry, to current big names, to a wealth of new & indy talent, this convention had something to suit every taste in artist’s alley and its panel selection. Add in a Marvel portfolio review, a costume contest, and creator Kevin Eastman, and you’ve got yourself a con significant enough to delay the doors opening by a couple of hours with a line wrapped around the block. Saturday’s show alone pulled in the convention business of last year’s Boston Comic Con!
To the delight of young and older fans alike one of the biggest pulls of this convention was the appearance of Kevin Eastman, co-creator of the Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles, which is currently in development as a feature film by Michael Bay. Buzz regarding the most recent screen adaptation of “Turtles” has had the fans in an uproar over Bay’s involvement. Eastman assured fans in Boston that much of what they are hearing is just rumors and misinterpretations. He said that Bay & company like the publicity that such rumors produce for the project, but not to take these things too seriously. Eastman said he feels that those producing the film are, in fact, listening to him in his suggestions, and that he is confident in the abilities of the screenwriters to adapt the story well. Apart from story, Eastman had also been concerned with the CGI quality of the film and he was particularly pleased to see that those working on it were referencing martial arts movies starring Jet Li to get character movement correct.
In addition to the “Turtles” movie, Eastman is also involved in the making of Heavy Metal 3 with longtime collaborator, Simon Bisley, which is also moving forward with a new director at the helm. Previously they had been in talks with David Fincher, but with the American adaptation of “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo,” Fincher was no longer able to stay on board. Director Robert Rodriguez (“Sin City,” “Once Upon a Time in Mexico”) has now picked up the mantle and the hopes are to make the film more like the first Heavy Metal: an anthology in 5 parts.
And here’s some pictures from the show:
‘Heavy Metal’ man: Simon Bisley
BY JEN VAUGHN – Read it and weep! Go have yourself a good cry (probably at a Disney movie). In the tradition of occasionally free newsprint tabloid comics like the one-shot Caboose and quarterly Smoke Signal, a collaborative comic will be available this weekend at MoCCA! Official press release below:
The word “comic” has always been a bit of misnomer and The Cartoon Crier hopes to set the record straight. Sorrow and woe is the focus of this free 36-page newspaper tabloid that highlights the work of members of The National Cartoonists Society and of The Center for Cartoon Studies’ community.
The Cartoon Crier will premiere on Saturday, April 28 at The Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art Festival (MoCCA) in New York City.
The Cartoon Crier features the saddest strips from iconic comics like Family Circus, Beetle Bailey, Dennis the Menace, B.C., and For Better and For Worse. The Cartoon Crier also includes comics by Ivan Brunetti, Mell Lazarus, Melissa Mendes, Joe Lambert, Tom Gammill, Hilary Price, Laura Park, Richard Thompson, and Mo Willems as well as new work from the paper’s editors Cole Closser, R. Sikoryak, and James Sturm.
The Cartoon Crier will be available as a free download on May 1 from cartoonstudies.org.
Jen Vaughn is ready to weep tears in four colors: CMYK.
Sorry to be so NY-centric but a lot is going on this week here in conjunction with MoCCA. A quick rundown:
The great Guy Delisle at Housing Works
Caravan of Comics at Comic Book Jones
Australian cartoonists hit Staten Island. What could go wrong?
Harvey Pekar's Cleveland: A Tribute with Joyce Brabner, Dean Haspiel, Jeff Newelt and Joseph Remnant April 25: 7:00PM – 8:00PM
At the Strand. Please note you have to buy a copy of the book or a $10 Strand gift card to attend their events now. Still cheap!
DRAWING THE LINE BETWEEN HIGH AND LOW ART: A CONVERSATION WITH CARTOONIST NICOLAS MAHLER
THURSDAY APR 26, 06:30 PM
The Austrian Cultural Forum is pleased to present an evening with award-winning Austrian cartoonist and animator Nicolas Mahler who will discuss his books Angelman: Fallen Angel and Old Masters (Alte Meister). Angelman: Fallen Angel, the tragicomic story of a hapless super-hero told from his corporate creation to his very human demise, is about to be published in the United States. Created in 2010, it is Mahler's first book to be released in English in six years, and the first to be released by Fantagraphics Books, one of the foremost publishers of comics and graphic novels in the United States. Meanwhile, Nicolas Mahler has just released a graphic version of Thomas Bernhard's acclaimed 1985 satirical novel Old Masters: A Comedy.
Celebrating My Friend Dahmer, Harvey Pekar's Cleveland, and Free Ice Cream!
Thu Apr 26, 7:00PM Host(s): Sam Henderson
Appearing: Derf Backderf Joyce Brabner Joseph Remnant
On the Docket: Reading Audience Q&A Book Signing
Of course there is more Friday and Saturday but we’ll save that for our MoCCA Party Poop.
Also, if we missed your event, hit us in the comments.
Sponsor: Duke University Center for International Studies
When: Tuesday, April 24 at 5:00 p.m.
Location: White Lecture Hall 107
Cost: Free and open to the public
Duke University has a sizable interest in comics from its faculty and I believe they even have a comics collection in their library. Another educational resource people should be aware of.
Legendary Filipino creator Tony DeZuniga recently had a severe stroke, and he is currently in critical condition. And his family does not have health insurance—yeah, this stuff happens in the Philippines, too. HIs wife Tina wrote of the details in the link below.
A benefit has been set up by Terry Allen who writes:
I’ve been in touch with Neal Adams and he’s going to try to pull something together to help Tina and Tony. If anyone would like to contribute to Tony’s health care, they can send the money directly to the DeZunigas via Paypal at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you make the payment as a personal gift, 100% of the amount gets transferred.
I have some books signed by Tony on my website www.fantompress.net. I’ve been doing Doc Savage related collectibles to help Bob Larkin whose wife is suffering from brain cancer.
Tony signed book plates for the Showcase Doc Savage reprint from DC and I’ll donate 100% of the profits from the sale of the Showcase books to Tony as well as 50% of the profits for anything else on site that you purchase.
Tina also is hoping to be able to send scans of some of Tony’s art that she will sell to help with their bills, so please drop me a line to get on the list to be notified when I get them.
DeZuniga co-created Jonah Hex and Black Orchid and brought many of the other Filipino artists of the ’70s and ’80s work. He’s a legend of the field, and if you can’t afford to help him monetarily, at least send him some good wishes.
Second Joe Sacco item of the day! The Oregon Book Awards honored graphic novels for the first time this year, and Sacco has won for FOOTNOTES IN GAZA,
his most recent journalistic comic investigating a possible massacre in Palestine in 1956. The other finalists included :
Graham Annable of Portland, “Book of Grickle”
Aidan Koch of Portland, “The Whale”
Sarah Oleksyk of Portland, “Ivy”
Greg Rucka of Portland, “Stumptown”