How a toxic history of harassment has damaged the comics industry


At the recently concluded Small Press Expo in Bethesda a very cool thing happened. A bunch of awards were presented to several talented, unique cartoonists who are turning out though provoking, beautifully crafted work, influential work. The winners were all popular and well deserved. And they all happened to be women. It was a thing, for sure, and much talked about. What struck me, first off, was just how strong the work was–Sophie Goldstein’s multi leveled future history of a world where having a baby became a rebellious act, Emily Carroll’s mastery of horror and structure, Eleanor Davis’s powerful examination of self-sabotaging quests for self-esteem in many settings.

The other thing that struck me was the contrast with the other conversations I was having at the show. Talking with people I used to work with in the “mainstream” comics industry about the long lists of men who would never have given Goldstein, Carroll or Davis a shot at telling their stories. Because they are women, and those people didn’t think women could make good comics.


DC’s $4.99 Line Is Already Here


With all the talk about comics prices, the number of $4.99 #1 issues in the Marvel relaunch and the general chaos over at DC right now, it might interest you to know that DC already has a line of $4.99 comics.  If you didn’t know that, you probably weren’t looking in the right place.  These […]


New Black Lightning Archive: DC, Tony Isabella Reconcile

Black Lightning 4

“Dogs and cats, living together!” – that’s what immediately popped into my mind yesterday when I read Tony Isabella praising DC on Facebook for how it was treating him in regard to Black Lightning.


All-New, All-Different Avengers Assemble with Kubert, Ross and Waid


When Marvel takes news to big outlets like The Wall Street Journal, they usually have something sizable to announce, a new artist for the main Avengers title after Secret Wars, shipping schedule, an Alex Ross cover debut, and roster confirmation are little details that add up to news. The Free Comic Book Day Avengers issue […]


Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale’s Long Lost ‘Captain America: White’ to Begin in September


In the long forgotten year of 2008, Captain America: White #0 washed up against the shores of time.  Traditionally, zero issues herald the arrival of #1s (or in the case of the New 52, insert themselves into the time stream a year after the reboot).  White, however, never got a #1.  Until now. Today, Marvel announced […]


BookCon 2015: The Con Expert Gets Conned and Learns a Lesson in Management


Last Saturday, I headed to the NYC Javits Center to spend a day at BookCon 2015, part of a five day publishing industry extravaganza.  While I consider myself a convention veteran, having attended New York Comic Con for the past four years, New York Anime Festival when that was a thing, and various other smaller […]


UPDATED: DC to Begin Placing Ads on Story Pages


UPDATE 2:  According to sources inside DC, the half-page ads will only appear in books releasing this June.  This makes the advertising experiment concurrent with the Divergence relaunch of DC’s comic line. UPDATE: An earlier version of the article indicated that Chris was upset with the job DC did integrating the art with the advertising. […]


Connor Willumsen on Marvel’s ban on implying “a blast in the can”


One of today’s most iconoclastic cartooning voices is Connor Willumsen, a traveling ninja who periodically busts out experimental and beautiful comics. He’s also known for turning his back on mainstream work, including a run on Punisher Max that he left early on. Prompted by Ronald Wimberley’s powerful “Lighten Up” about being asked by a Big […]


Review: Spider-Gwen #1 Packs a Pun-ch


200,000 pre-orders and many months in the making, Spider-Gwen #1 has finally arrived, bringing with her vibrant artwork and what is surely an outrageous cell phone bill.


Visit for Poison Ivy, Stay for Black Hand: DC shakes up the New Suicide Squad Roster


DC’s New Suicide Squad team is about to get shaken up yet again. In the aftermath of Convergence, DC is rebranding the team with an all-new set of villains. No, the comic will not renumbered, but will see a roster change. The news was announced in the Channel 52 backmatter page on this week’s releases […]


Advanced Review: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Deals With Serious Matters


There’s an air of impossibility surrounding this book. It begins with a song and vibrant neon crime fighting. It deflates the hyper-serious and allows for a sense of whimsy. When I started working behind the desk at a comic shop, something like this would have barely snuck through Marvel editorial as a one-shot – a reaction to an audience that had an appetite for Serious Comics about Things That Matter and very little else. Today things are clearly different.


The Beat Podcasts! More To Come: 2014 in Comics

More to come 2014

Brought to you by Publishers Weekly, it’s More To Come, the weekly podcast of comics news, interviews and discussion with Calvin Reid, Kate Fitzsimons and The Beat’s own Heidi MacDonald! In this week’s podcast the More to Come Crew discuss the big stories of 2014 month by month, including gains and growing pains in the […]


The Free Comic Book Day Silver Titles are Pretty Awesome

By: Alexander Jones After revealing the first wave of Free Comic Book Day titles, it was only a matter of time before the rest of them started to pop up. This next batch is very exciting, and full of fun offerings from all your favorite publishers with the big guns like Marvel and DC, along […]


The Cover to Nonplayer #2 and how to make money as an artist


Some rambling thoughts on various aspects of making comics and making money.

I alluded earlier to the sudden announcement that Nonplayer #2 by Nate Simpson was finished and would be presumably be coming out later this year. Simpson has written a much longer piece complete with a FAQ confirming that the issue will be in the May solicitations from Image; he’s contacted Image about reprinting issue #1 but no response yet, and Warners—which had optioned the comic—has let their rights lapse, so it’s there for the taking. And then he gets to why it took 3 1/2 years to draw the comic. It’s a long answer but I’ll lift a graph:


The Art of Batgirl and Where We Go From Here

Batgirl #37 feature image

This is obviously prefaced with a heaping helping of “what the hell does a straight white male know about these issues?”. The simple truth: I don’t know anything. I likely never will – or at least not in a way that can be internalized. At best, I can gather other people’s feelings and memories and […]


The Beat Podcasts! More To Come: Star Wars #1 hits 1 million copies


Brought to you by Publishers Weekly, it’s More To Come, the weekly podcast of comics news, interviews and discussion with Calvin Reid, Kate Fitzsimons and The Beat’s own Heidi MacDonald. In this week’s podcast, the More to Come crew discuss Marvel’s new Star Wars #1 confirmed to sell at least 1 million copies, a gas […]