Thursday, May 31, 2007

Groan, creak, (insert knee exploding sfx)

-Oh man, am I ever having a hard time adjusting to my summer schedule. There might be another bumpy week ahead, friends. We'll see.

-Great thanks to Chris Mautner for summarizing the Badman/Santoro exchange re: Yukiko's Spinach. I'd been aware of the controversy for days, but I just couldn't bring myself to actually check it out--it seemed to much like having to eat one's vegetables (GET IT? SPINACH? VEGETABLES?), and I was more in the mood to read actual comics than read people's thoughts on a comic I had never heard of, and which looked unbelievably boring. I mean, I just hate, hate, hate photorealistic art in comics. I feel like I'm stuck in an a-ha video or something. Plus I like actual cartooning. Anyway, thanks Mr. Mautner. Now I feel better informed about the less enticing issues of the day.

-Did Matt Brady (Newsarama version) write this?

-One more Blogorama item--this whole thing is making me question my willingness to read comics anymore. First, Takeshi Miyazawa calls manga "J-Comics." Oh my god, do we ever not need that term. Are other people calling it that? Is there anyway we can get them to stop? Second, some comment-leaver named "Kent" left the following gem, which I will not comment on other than adding some emphasis:

"It’s not indifference–it is perspective. This cover is no more offensive than many other artworks done through the ages. From works of the Old Masters to more recent Pulp illustrations of the 30’s and 40’s. It is finding offense when there is none to be found–it is nonsense. It remains a tempest in a teapot."

Where is Matt Brady (Newsarama version) to add some Marvel stockholder-approved sanity to the proceedings?

-I'm shocked Michael Netzer hasn't shown up to defend Neal Adams' scientific credentials. He might very well have done so by the time you're reading this.

-Fuck you, commenter who calls him/herself Reality Check. Also, God is Brian K. Vaughan ever overrated. In fact, his suckitude isn't relative, it's absolute. As in there's absolutely nothing I like about any of his comics I've read (which, as I've said before, does not include Runaways).

Seriously, Mark Andrew wrote way, way more than I could ever bring myself to say about Ex Machina, and reminded me of why I hated the series in the first place (it was the Lincoln art thing that really turned me against Vaughan). I would add that I really dislike the art, for reasons mentioned in the second item listed above. (Let me edit this to add that I really liked MA's review. I don't know if I made that clear enough before.)

-Via Heidi McDonald, Tim Leong's account of a recent Dave Cockrum tribute:

"Clifford Meth, Cockrum's longtime friend, started off the speeches, reminding everyone Cockrum died in his Superman pajamas and was cremated in his Green Lantern shirt. He also read a statement from Marv Wolfman, who was unable to make it in town. Next Meth introduced a prepared audio statement from Harlan Ellison, but not before making a light dig at Gary Groth. Ellison read from a humorous intro he wrote for a Cockrum tribute book. It actually drew a tear from Peter David — which actually came out of laughter, not sadness. Not everyone was into Ellison's enthusiastic but long speech, as Mark Waid jokingly pretended to cut his wrists halfway through."

1. Fuck you, Harlan Ellison. I mean, yes, this is an obvious response, and I would hope that anyone read this would feel similarly (ditto if the roles were reversed, and it was Groth "lightly" insulting Ellison at a tribute to, I don't know, Gil Kane or someone). Still, it bears repeating.

2. I'm not sure how to praise Mark Waid in light of all the jokes I've made about his repeated, allegedly jocular challenges to physical combat. It's kind of in poor taste, but then so was Ellison's comments from the sound of it. (And it might not have even happened, so who knows.)

3. I probably shouldn't say it, but the comments about Dave Cockrum's clothing were really sad. And not in a noble way--I mean, I'm really disturbed at the thought of Cockrum wearing Superman pajamas as an adult, especially on his death bed. I generally try not to dwell too much on the latter days of Cockrum's life because they're so horribly, crushingly depressing. Kind of unrelated: He died in a small South Carolina town where my aunt used to live. I've always wondered how he ended up there, cause it's really not a place where you'd seek to live (unless you're attracted by low housing costs or something). There is a pretty nice comics store in the county seat, though--my current pick for Best Comics Store in South Carolina. The competition hasn't really been that fierce the past couple of years, truth be told.


Anonymous said...

As someone who actually was at a tribute to Gil Kane that Mr. Groth arranged 7 years ago... nope, no cheap shots at Harlan Ellison. At all. Groth had more important things to think about that day. It was a really nice service.

As for Mr. Cockrum... he loved all that stuff. Maybe a little too much, but the two times I met the man, I knew I was in the presence of one of the biggest comic fans ever. He loved, loved, LOVED his job.

Unknown said...

I gotta say, it cracks me up whenever you clarify Matt Brady by adding "Newsarama version". Apparently I've successfully diluted his brand or something. Hopefully I'll never do something stupid enough to get mentioned here, but what would you call me? Matt Brady (Warren Peace version)? Just wondering.

I also wanted to chime in and say, yes, that Reality Check fellow is a douche. I happen to like Brian K. Vaughan and Ex Machina, and I really enjoyed MarkAndrew's review. It's good to have a discussion, and it royally pisses me off whenever somebody says "you're not allowed to critique this unless you also create comics". That's bullshit.

Oh, and in slight defense of Takeshi Miyazawa, I think he was abbreviating the phrase "Japanese comics readers" rather than referring to manga as J-comics. But even if he was using the silly term, it might be because he lives in Japan and uses "comics" and "manga" interchangeably, so he needed something to distinguish the Japanese comics. Okay, that's a stretch.

Steve Flanagan said...

Next Meth introduced a prepared audio statement from Harlan Ellison, but not before making a light dig at Gary Groth.

Doesn't that say that Meth made the dig, not Ellison?

Steve Flanagan said...

I was really saddened by the number of posts that came in over the holiday weekend (non-Americans excused, of course)

It was a holiday in Britain too - the poetically named "late spring bank holiday" - and, yes, I posted. I gather that the only cure is mounting boredom.

Alex! said...

CSBG mostly just depresses me.

Strike that... it should be "entirely depresses me."

On a possibly related note, the word verification is "fatgi".

Dick Hyacinth's Ghost said...

I think you're right, Steve. In that case, I think the Meth thing makes a bit more sense, though it still seems kind of bafflingly inappropriate--as Cockrum's longtime friend, one would think he wouldn't want to take anything away from the memorial service (and as Ellison's longtime supporter, one would think he'd introduce him as something more than just a litigant). This is all quite speculative. I'm curious to know exactly what he said and in what context. Maybe a full transcript will pop up in the next day or so to clarify all this.

Lynxara said...

I was going to post and say-- yes, Miyazawa lives and works in Tokyo right now. In Japan, manga refers to all comics, including American comic books and comic strips. Frankly, he may find "manga" a non-useful term for describing uniquely Japanese comics, so why shouldn't he make up something that works better? God knows that's what Americans did my misappropriating "manga" in the first place.

Anonymous said...

"-I'm shocked Michael Netzer hasn't shown up to defend Neal Adams' scientific credentials. He might very well have done so by the time you're reading this."

Since when is it my responsibility to defend Neal's scientific credentials? His checklist speaks for itself.

I'm usually more prompt when called, that's true. But I've been away for a while.

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