Comic Books

Best Comic Book Of The Year Announced!

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By me…

Yes, this is just my opinion, but the best comic book published in 2006 was David Petersen’s amazing MOUSE GUARD, published by Archaia Studios Press.

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Amazingly visualized, MOUSE GUARD tells the story of a coming war between separate factions of Mouse Nation while using the trappings of a fantasy narrative.

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There’s intrigue and politics and all of that jazz, but mostly there are a ton of super cute mice kicking some serious ass. I cannot express the delight I get when I flip through each new issue. Everything is so beautiful, the pallet, the page layouts, the minimal dialog and rich open story… this is just damn good comics.

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And its great for kids too. The language is clean, the gore level is low, the stories are adventurous, the mice are too cute for words (did I mention cute mice?) and if your child can’t follow exactly everything in the story, the art and excitement will keep them engaged. So if you want something cool for Christmas that will get an 8 to 10-year-old reading, this just might do the trick.

This was, hands down, the most satisfying comic book to hit since ELK’S RUN (my vote for best comic of 2005)

And for those keeping score, I felt that SHAOLIN COWBOY was the best book of 2004.

If you’re not hip to this stuff make the effort.

I’ll do the Best Graphic Novel/Collected Trade soon.

You Tube Jack Kirby Interview

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“I went to the bible and came up with Galactus.”

My New Conan Series Solicited for Jan.!

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There’s a full page add on the inside front cover of Previews. The closest I’ve ever come to the actual cover!

Click here for the full solicitation of CONAN AND THE MIDNIGHT GOD

Note: Tone Rodriguez is no longer the artist on the book despite what the solicitation says. It’s now Will Conrad.

Check it out…

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Post Panel Report

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The PULP GRIND MANIFESTO panel I helped produce for the West Hollywood Book Fair was a swimming success!

More people attended than we ultimately had room for. The bio-mass spilled out from under the tent and into the truly intense heat. Despite sweltering conditions, none left and the crowd actually grew throughout the event. Many who joined us after the start of the proceedings seemed to be non-comic book readers roped in by the engaging writers talking boldly, honestly and entertainingly about their craft.

I couldn’t have asked for four (+ Cody, Deven’s amazing service dog, who had lots to say) better speakers.

We didn’t really end up with a manifesto per say, but I intend, as a creative exorcise only, to revisit and restructure the resulting document using the words of the guests. I’ll post it here when it’s ready.

You can read a detailed blow by blow report of the panel here.

Word on the street is that there’s going to be a pod cast of the entire thing soon. I’ll keep you posted.

I want to thank the panelists, Brian K. Vaughan, Mark Waid, Allan Heinberg and Devin Grayson; the awesome moderator Christine Boyland; Plus Mark Masterson writer of Dorothy who followed along, kept notes on the big board (no easy task) and took the only photo of the event (below); and finally, thanks to my endlessly energetic cohort Roz Helfand from the book fair.

You can read Mark Masterson’s take on the panel here

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BKV spreads the comics love, Baby!!

Waid, Heinberg, Grayson and Vaughan create a Comic Book Writer’s Manifesto live onstage!

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For those who live in the LA area!

Don’t make plans September 17, ’cause we’ve whipped you up a comics treat!

The West Hollywood Book Fair is proud to present the…

PULP GRIND MANIFESTO: Writing the Monthly Comic Book!!

Four firmly entrenched writers in popular comics…

Devin.jpg DEVIN GRAYSON
(Batman: Gotham Knights – the first ongoing Batman series created by a female! – Matador & the novel DC Universe: Inheritance)

Allan.jpg ALLAN HEINBERG
(Young Avengers, Wonder Woman & ABCs Grey’s Anatomy)

Brian.jpg BRIAN K. VAUGHAN
(Pride of Baghdad, Y: The Last Man, Ex Machina)

&

Mark.jpg MARK WAID
(52, Supergirl and the Legion of Superheroes, John Doe)

Are called upon to create the first ever Comic Book Writer’s Manifesto live, on stage!

Questions will format a spirited discussion on topics as diverse as the relevance of comics in broader culture, personal creative process, gender politics in the medium and the perceived aesthetic mandates of the comic book mainstream. Each discussion topic will be distilled into a single manifesto bullet-point whose language must be agreed upon by all four of these very different creators!

A signing with all participating creators will follow at the Golden Apple booth!!

Don’t miss this engaging, smart and above all, fun panel moderated by CHRISTINE BOYLAN (Superman: Secret Files) and conceptualized by JOSHUA DYSART (Swamp Thing, Captain Gravity and the Power of the Vril) and ROZ HELFAND (West Hollywood Book Fair Organizer)

When:
Sunday, September 17, 2006
1:30pm 2:30pm

(signing to follow! Bring your goodies!)
Book Fair from 10am to 6pm

Where:
Comics/Sci-Fi Pavilion!
West Hollywood Park
647 N San Vicente Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069

Why:
Because comics rock!

Not tired of reading yet?

Check this out!

Summer movie season is increasingly dominated by superheroes. A best selling novelist explores the American immigrant experience through the eyes of fictional comic book creators. Fine artists use comic book imagery to explore ideas of post-modern relativism. Even advertising now uses the graphic tools comics created. As the subjects, style and innovations of comics are “legitimized” by other media, how can comic creators keep the traditions of serialized pulp narrative alive while still breaking new ground and staying fresh? By writing a damn manifesto, fool!

See next week’s LA WEEKLY for more info!