§ Scott McCloud has relaunched scottmccloud.com, and there you can read the Google Comic, THE RIGHT NUMBER, and other early and middle period McCloud experiments in web comics. Above, “The Right Number” ©2003 and TM Scott McCloud.
§ Papercutz, the line of kids comics that publishes NANCY DREW, BIONICLE, TALES FROM THE CRYPT and so on, has launched a creators’ blog.
§ Paul Levitz Has Retired, says Scott Edelman.
§ Jennifer Contino recalls how her late grandmother encouraged her to be a superhero fan.
As I’ve said before, I can’t remember a time when superheroes weren’t in my life. As this picture proves, I was playing with Mego superhero dolls as a toddler. The beautiful woman there is my grandmother. While a lot of my aunts were trying to get me to play with Barbies or some other “girl-friendly” toy, grandma bought me superheroes for Christmas and my birthdays. She never tried to force the blonde bimbo brigade upon me and encouraged anything and everything I enjoyed. In fact, she played superheroes with me, watched Wonder Woman and Bionic Woman with me, and listened to me ramble on and on about my favorite characters and what I loved about each of them.
§ Wired has probably the most extensive interview with Alan Moore in the run-up to WATCHMEN.
Wired: What’s the significance of the superhero? What’s interesting about the iconography or the archetypes?
Alan Moore: I don’t actually think that anything is, at the moment. I don’t really think that very much is interesting about the superhero as an archetype. I’ve been distanced from the whole concept for quite a while now, but I’ve been considering it.
It has occurred to me that the superhero really only originates in America. That seems to be the only country that has produced this phenomenon. Yes, we have had knockoffs of American superheroes originating in this country and presumably in other parts of the world, but they’re not natural to this environment. They’re an alien species. And I’ve thought about it and wondered why that was. And I wonder—perhaps this is being too simplistic, I don’t know, but I wonder if the root of the emergence of the superhero in American culture might have something to do with a kind of an ingrained American reluctance to engage in confrontation without massive tactical superiority.
§ AND THEN…Sean T. Collins calls Alan Moore on being cranky about comics he hasn’t read.
§ Brian Heater interviewsRob Liefeld, with an intro that’s nearly as long as the interview:
It’s for these reasons that I felt compelled to speak with Liefeld, upon seeing a paper placard bearing his name on the Image table. My intent was not to celebrate nor denounce the man (plenty of people have done both before), but rather to speak to him as an artist who had—for both better and worse—left a major mark on the industry. Liefeld, for his part, agreed, but was undeniably hesitant—”five minutes,” he tells me, referring to the maximum duration of our interview. And, at least toward the beginning, a touch standoffish. The artist had clearly come to anticipate being bombarded by controversy. Of course such things didn’t cause him to hesitate from boasting about his accomplishments, result in such gems as, “The too most popular characters in comics right now—one is Barack Obama, the other is Deadpool.”
§ A Montrealer is looking for Maggie Chascarrillo. (Thanks, Sam H!)
§ Mark Millar saw WATCHMEN, and he has a review:
All the way through it, Jonathan and I kept looking at each other and unsure if we were loving it or not. It’s very reverential, but maybe WAY TOO reverential for something that wasn’t structured like a movie. This is a twelve episode HBO drama chopped down to three hours and feels simultaneously dense and yet somehow missing. I could fill in the gaps because I know the source material by heart, but friends who hadn’t read the book were utterly, utterly baffled. I think the book is quite difficult, but that’s part of the brilliance. Skimming over what’s probably the most dense comic ever written wasn’t such a good idea. It was like watching The Wire season one on fast forward.
§ Scott Mendelson reviews the animated Wonder Woman at HuffPo:
As Diana travels New York City, she is shocked to see female children taught that they are less than their male counterparts, while female adults feign helplessness as a means of flirtation. Refreshingly, director Lauren Montgomery and writers Gail Simone and Michael Jelenic do not simply toss the Wonder Woman character in a story where her womanhood is irrelevant. The creators also refuse to pat themselves on the back for creating a film involving a female super hero. Instead, they present the idea of such a hero as normal and expected, blisteringly questioning why it should be noteworthy at all.
§ And finally, Joss Whedon sounds off on many things in Maxim:
You recently wrapped up a run writing Astonishing X-Men in which you introduced the “mutant cure” plotline that ended up in X-Men: The Last Stand. How do you feel about how it was handled in the movie?
I felt like it would have been nice to be paid. We were told they were using some of our stuff for the movie and…”Isn’t that exciting?” You know, I’m sorry, but it’s not that exciting, and I don’t think it was handled well in the movie. I think they kind of glossed over it. So, ultimately it doesn’t affect me. You know when you write a Marvel comic, it’s theirs. They own it and they can do whatever they want with it. We probably weren’t the first people to come up with the idea of the mutant cure, though they did use some of our characters and specific situations. But at the end of the day, they made it not matter: any argument about whether or not it’s a terrible thing for people to be talking about curing mutants is kind of swept under the table. So ultimately I wish it had been handled better.