-People are still talking about Mark Waid's unarmed combat challenge. In this case, it's Graeme McMillan, who apparently missed or forgot about Shane Bailey covering the story yesterday. What's really noteworthy are the responses:
"I’d sure be happy if we lived in a world where the writers had much, much more power than the artists."
Someone who shares Waid's prejudices, apparently. Why do I get the feeling that this is someone who views art as purely illustrative at best and the reason why Justice League is late at worst? Even better, though, is this response, from someone self-identifying only as "Bob":
"Jeez…can’t we all get along? And punch each other in the face? I’d bet that both fellas haven’t got the cajones to actually carry through with those kinds of threats. Two overweight nerds slap-hitting each other like faggots."
Don't get me wrong, I'm eager to see Mark Waid and some random dude fight as much as the next guy, but I don't think either of them have the balls to be a queer (to quote Ben Weasel). I'd be shocked if this comment stays up forever--it was placed at 10:50 EDT. Let's see how long it takes for someone at the Newsarama Blog to notice it.
...Well, it's 3:51 EDT now, and the comment appears to be there to stay. This is the part where I wonder if it would still be there if the poster had used a racial epithet rather than a sexual one, but I'm a little distracted by Mark Waid's appearance in the comments thread:
"In retrospect, of course, I regret having brought a grenade to a knife fight…but I thought it was important to take the hours to compose that response because (clearly) not enough is known about how the process works, and encouraging writers and artists to build bunkers rather than to communicate will not make for better comics.
I do need to learn, however, to stop being surprised when statements of exasperation like '…makes me want to settle for punching you in the face' translate to some as 'an immediate threat of physical violence.' Despite its being made up of words, sentences, and language, the internet remains one giant Rorschach test, doesn’t it?"
Sounds like someone's chickening out. Come on, Waid, don't be a coward. I've seen you threaten violence towards too many people at this point--I need closure. I'd volunteer to fight you myself, but (note to self: remember to fill this space with a plausible excuse-DH), so fighting is completely out of the question for me. So which blogger/columnist/reporter should Mark Waid fight? My first instinct is to say ADD, but I don't know what's become of him.
(Anyone interested in a serious discussion about the interplay between writer and artist, rather than the poking-with-a-stick I provide at this blog, are advised to check out Tom Spurgeon's take on the subject. Oh, and I think I agree with Joe Rice's claim that the best writers are at least capable of doing a little drawing themselves. I just can't imagine how one would start writing a script for comics without some idea of how the story would look when broken down into panels.)
(Oh, okay, here's my take: I think one of the reasons mainstream comics art is so bad is that the writing has taken on greater prominence in the last 10 years. The pendulum has swung to far in the other direction, to the point where there is a vocal contingent of fans (see the first comment quoted above) who basically say that any art will do as long as the book is on time. Waid's argument that the deck is stacked in favor of the artist rings false simply because editors seem to be treating artists as mismatched stereo components, plugging them into titles where they may or may not fit (see, for instance, McKone on FF or Ramos on Wolverine). It could be that the blame lies mostly in editorial, actually. Let's see Tom Breevort respond to that. Quick, someone who writes for a blog that Breevort actually reads, make this argument on my behalf!)
-Haven't seen this posted anywhere: Edward Gorey's The Doubtful Guest to be made into a live action film, with the titular character apparently played by a Jim Henson Productions puppet or something. Oh lord, does this sound like a dubious prospect. My wife, who alerted me to the story, agrees that The Doubtful Guest doesn't really have enough meat to support a feature length film. I smell How the Grinch Stole Christmas type padding, replete with cute stuffed toys and maybe a children's television show:
"Originally published in 1957, the whimsical story revolves around a quirky family whose life is turned upside down when a mysterious, mischievous creature arrives unannounced and unwelcome, bringing trouble with him and wreaking havoc.
'It's hard to come up with a creature that you've never seen before in any medium, and he's a unique little creation who is very appealing without being cute or cloying,' Jim Henson Co. co-CEO Lisa Henson said. 'He's sophisticated yet simple at the same time, but it's not overly juvenile. Adults can find him cute, too.'"
I'm really dreading this.
-Some pictures from Kazuo Umezu's personal collection. Somehow I thought he would have his mouth wide open in every picture, like he was screaming at the top of his lungs during all his waking hours.
-A nasty retailing conundrum. I have no idea how one would resolve this problem, especially since the customer's mother doesn't seem like much help.
-You can throw all the articles at us you want, DC, but that's still one ugly-assed cover. I mean, the Eric Wright parts are nice enough, but the figures in the foreground almost make me long for the days of Michael Turner covers. Superman looks like he's about to hit Black Canary with a reverse clothesline, for god's sake. (Semi-related: I think I offended a cop yesterday when he asked me what was going in the book that would make it more expensive than usual and I told him I didn't know cause I don't read Justice League due to my intense dislike of Brad Meltzer. Ahhh, he seems like a pretty jovial fellow, so I'm probably safe from police reprisals.)
-I really thought her last name was McDonald. Sorry, Hiedi.