Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Newsgroups, dude. Newsgroups.

-Via Johanna Draper Carlson: Dan Slott apparently goes to torrent emporium Demonoid and beseeches people to not download torrents which include his work. People in the thread wonder about Slott's 3+ gigs of downloaded material. (And don't forget that he's uploaded about 2 1/2 gigs as well. For those of you unfamiliar with torrents, is simply standard etiquette--he's (presumably) not uploading new material, but he is seeding material he's already downloaded. Most private torrent trackers require a 1:1 seeding-to-leeching ratio.) I've a couple of thoughts: (1) Demonoid is not just a comics downloading site; there are lots of other things, like software, games, music, television shows, DVDs, and even non-comic books. If Slott has downloaded 3 gigs, that's a ton of music, books, and/or software. So it's probably some combination of games, TV, movies, or...comics. (2) If it is comics, Slott may be downloading stuff that's out of print, not yet translated into English, or tied up in court. (3) Bit torrent is the Live Journal of downloading free shit. There are plenty of other ways to get stuff that are more convenient and less risky. I thought Slott would be smart enough to recognize this. (4) I'm assuming this is actually Slott, and not some concerned citizen who considers illegal downloading to be worse than assuming someone's identity.

-Prediction: Draw Mary Marvel! and Draw Aunt May! are coming sooner rather than later. (FYI: Any of you interested in seeking out more info on Ross Campbell should be advised that his website documents a recent appendectomy with photographs, which I must say are not the best accompaniment to a morning bowl of pecan muesli.)

-Dirk Deppey basically agrees with me re: 70s comics, though I expect this is more like throwing gasoline on the embers of a dying campfire--it might spread the flames, or it might just douse them. (Feel free to correct me on my understanding of science here.) I would like to point out that his opinion of 60s Crumb vs. 70s Crumb is exactly how I feel, though I feel compelled to add that Crumb also produced some of his worst comics in the early 70s. It's just (rightfully) overshadowed by his much, much better work in Arcade. Speaking of which, if any publisher could manage to get the rights to reprint the entire run in one or two oversized volumes, I would gladly pay the surely exorbitant price necessary to secure a copy for myself.

-Meme watch: Grame McMillan vs. Mark Millar. I don't have the time or inclination to read the whole thread, but Brian Hibbs and Dirk Deppey are already linking to it (Hibbs manages to get in a bald joke; I'm still kind of strangely disillusioned to find out McMillan looks so much like Moby). My main concern is Millar's claim that he first heard of McMillan only six months ago. I'm not sure if this reflects the irrelevance of comics blogs or Millar's dependence on his own fiefdom to filter the dark mysteries of the internet, processing them into a cheery, appetizing pablum (which would explain his insistence that Civil War was an unqualified hit among readers of all stripes). I mean really, Fanboy Rampage wasn't some stupid blog where a sociopathic ex-con was attempting (and largely failing, sadly) to exorcise his blinding anger at his stupid fascist father, stupid preening teachers, various stupid girls who wouldn't talk to him, the stupid jerk boss at the tire store who insulted his haircut, the stupid judge who sentenced him to five years behind bars just for a little aggravated assault with a tire iron, and the stupid warden who made him shine his shoes three times a day just in order to stay out of gen pop by attacking more famous bloggers and the beloved comics of their youth. No, Fanboy Rampage was a beloved institution. If Millar had never heard of it, then either he's out of touch or I've got to find a new surrogate for my white hot rage.


Anonymous said...

If Deppey agrees with you, that just means you're both wrong about the 70s.

Chris Mautner said...

Which 70s Crumb are you thinking of as his worst? The Frosty the Snowman strips? What do you think of his 80s work?

Dick Hyacinth said...

I like the Frosty the Snowman strips pretty well, though not as much as some of his other Arcade work and much of his work in Weirdo (never much cared for Mode O'Day, though). I'm talking more like the material beginning with "Joe Blow" (though to be fair that was published in '69) up until the around the start of Arcade. A lot of jam comics, a lot of Mr. Natural, and I think the quality of his art was deteriorating a bit. Actually, his illustration work was still excellent, but the comics were suffering.

This is not to say that Crumb hasn't produced some poor material since then--the Snoid stuff for instance--but the conventional wisdom that this era was marked by somewhat formulaic misogynistic crap, especially compared to what came before and after, is pretty accurate from my perspective.

Dan Coyle said...

To paraphrase August Pollak, Mark Millar lies. He constantly lies. He constantly lies about everything there is to lie about.

He's lying about Graeme because that's what he does. In the heyday of FBR Mark Peyton would show up to carry Millar's water. Peyton is Millar's consigliere.

Mark Millar knows he Graeme is. He's just a liar.