* Brian Michael Bendis will leave the Avengers books next year. I cannot tell a lie: I love many of Bendis' early works. Fortune & Glory was great, Ultimate Spider-man (especially the first arc) was stunning and Sam & Twitch was much, MUCH better than any Sam & Twitch comic had a right to be. Plus, I had a letter published in the letter pages. Why? Because I'm awesome, that's why.
But his Avengers run... uhhh. Not my thing. Too much talkey, not enough 'splodey. Plus, it doesn't feel like an Avengers book, it feels like Marvel's Greatest Heroes Team-Up. I'm a traditionalist, what can I say. I think Spidey isn't a team player and Wolverine going off and killing people in Uncanny X-Force makes it hard to figure out how he can actually be on The Avengers and not get, y'know, arrested. And look, I can see how some people like looking at Spider-Woman, but come on... I can only take so much Jessica Jones. I mean, Jessica Drew. Wait, wasn't Jessica Jones based on Jessica Drew? So how are they both in the b-
I will give Bendis credit for one thing, though: Luke Cage is not a C-lister anymore. He made Cage a player. It is one of the few successful pushes for a minority character at Marvel in the last ten years.
So, Bendis is leaving. Someone else will be taking over. It's a change that's overdue, and I'm happy to see it happen. Given the downward spiral that have been the store's Avengers sales for the last 6 months, I don't think I'm in the minority on this one.
* ONCE UPON A TIME on NBC is by some of the LOST writers. Confession: I'm a huge LOST fan. HUUUGE. That said, I'm also a FABLES fan. It looked to a lot of people that NBC had ripped off the great Vertigo comic. So, what did Bill Williamson, creator of Fables do? He did an interview at CBR, telling people to lay off. What a guy.
* I've been bad. I shouldn't talk about it, 'cause if I give away my secrets, you won't come to the blog and read my posts. Which is funny, because I write two entries a month, if I'm lucky.
I've been a bad comic manager. There's this comic that came out a month back, and I've been making people read it. Not buying it, but reading it. In the store. And it's... well, it's not your average comic. It's part sci-fi, part parody, part love story and part world-breaker. Reading this comic, will warp your mind. It will change the way you see things. It will alter your perception of reality.
Most importantly (and really, this is the main point), you'll put the book down, ask me "Why... why?" and then put your head in your hands and sob while I laugh hysterically at you. Amanda will laugh too, if she's around. She's like my little padawan of sadism. I'm so proud of her.
So, by all means, please go read OUR LOVE IS REAL.
(Just so there's no confusion, this is not a book for anyone under the age of 18. Oh, and I love it.)
* I like the idea that The Den is a place to get away from politics, religion, the real world, and other hot topic issues. We're an escape from the real world. At least, that's the way I like to think of it. I know, it's a crazy idea and I'm nuts for bringing it up, but that's the kinda guy I am: Nuts. Awesome. And slightly sadistic, in case you couldn't tell from the previous item.
Where was I? Oh yeah. Politics. So, as some of you might know, a couple people here and there have been getting together for sleepovers in a couple cities across the planet. And by "couple", I mean "thousands" and by "sleepovers", I mean "Occupy". See what I did there? I was sarcastic and you didn't see it coming. I told you I was awesome.
So, there's an Occupy Comics book coming out. It's not something that will be offered by our distributor, but the talent included in the project is stellar. It's one of those fancy-shmancy Kickstarter things. Go take a look, and maybe pledge a couple dollars towards putting it together.
* This indy project caught my eye. I have no idea who any of these creators are, and who is publishing it, but I want:
* In the ongoing debate about the role that digital comics plays in the comic industry, there's been a lot of conversation about "digital day-and-date", and whether digital comics will end up putting comic book stores out of business. I'm not going to lie, I get a little concerned sometimes that ten years from now, everything will be electronic and noone will come in to yell at me that they didn't get their Deadpool comic that week. I don't think comic/games/popculture stores are going to disappear, but I think there's some darwinism at play here: The stores that make themselves a destination for the customer, will get the tall green dollars. Those that don't, won't.
But then there's the creator side. What's it like to be a comic creator, watching the industry grudgingly move towards digital day-and-date? How does that tie into sales over the last few years?
Brian Wood, writer of DMZ, Northlanders, and the soon-to-be-published Wolverine mini-series, writes on his Tumblr about some of these topics, in lieu of the brou-haha that erupted around Dark Horse's digital day and date policy over the weekend. and a couple loud-mouthed retailers, about Dark Horse's digital day-and-date policy. Wood is always very honest about his work and his career, without taking shots at others. This is a great read for anyone who enjoys hearing about the "other" side of comics, as well for any future creators out there.
Highly recommended. Make with the clicky.
* And last but not least... Rob Liefeld. I don't know that there's a more polarizing figure in comics. Is he crazy? Is he a genius? By all accounts, he's the nicest guy you'll ever meet, and loves comics. I mean _loves_ comics. A buddy of mine had him in for a signing at his west coast store, and swore to me that Liefeld was the best salesman he'd ever had; The guy was pointing people towards great books left and right, many of which didn't have Liefeld's name on them.
But the internet loves to hate, and every time an article or interview pops up online, the comments section goes wild with "he can't draw feet" or "That pose looked awesome in 1995" or other low-quality snark. All that said, he's gotten 4 issues of The Infinite and 4 issues of Hawk & Dove out on time in the last 4 months. Any other Image founders even coming close to that?
So, in the spirit of fairness, I invite you to read this longish blog posting on Liefeld's site, where he talks about his work in the 90's, the time off he took around the turn of the century, and what it was like, several years later, to go online and find out that he had become one of the most hated artists in all of comics. It's fascinating and more than a little honest, to see inside the head of one of comics' most intriguing figures.
Reading that makes me want to fly him out for a signing. I wonder how many people would show up?
"How to beat the Haters" by Rob Liefeld