§ In 1983 the late great Fantagraphics editor Kim Thompson wrote this letter in response to the question “What’s WRong with Comics” in Heavy Metal magazine. Now I don’t subscribe to the notion that in 2014 comics are in a bad place at all, but 30 years ago, there was definitely room for improvement, and a few things have yet to change all that much.
§ The internet has helped her, says Colleen Doran, but maybe it has hurt her even more with time wastage. Doran uses a program called Self Control to turn off the internet for up to 24 hours at a time. (I use Freedom for those times myself, although 60 minutes is as long as I can go without checking my email when I’m working.)
§ The SPX exhibitor lottery has ended and a list of winners and a wait list have been announced. I have to admit there are several caroonists on the wait list I would love to see at the show but…well, we knew it was a lottery going in.
§ Beat alum Henry Barajas is hosting a mini-comic-con and a screening of The Image Revolution at Tucson’s Loft Cinema March 24.
§ Forget about The Yellow King, for year’s there has been a whole school of thought devoted to the Unified Pixar Universe theorem. Here’s an entry tat deal’s wih Andy’s mom from Toy Story and just where she fits in. Not sure I buy this one since several key gifs seem to be missing.
§ On my nightly Amazon bestseller check, I see that the Kindle version of Black Widow: The Name of the Rose by Marjorie Liu and Daniel Acuna has been on the list for five days. WHAT GIVES? Why does everyone love this Black Widow book all of a sudden? The print version is OOP of course.
§ Chester Brown is one of 50 Canadians Who Changed the World. Congratulations, Chester!
§ The comics criticism of Shaenon Garrity has been missing for too long, but she’s back with a look at Bloom County and The Simpsons:
But in retrospect, Bloom County came from a fundamentally different perspective. Trudeau emerged from the 1970s late-counterculture tradition of National Lampoon and Saturday Night Live: erudite young left-wingers, trained on Ivy League humor magazines, out to smash the system with subversive comedy as a vehicle for progressive politics. Breathed’s strip anticipated the next generation, the style that would replace Lampoon-ing: media-saturated, self-referential, political only to the degree that politics is part of pop culture, as surreal and anarchic as a two-in-the-morning flip up the TV dial. The humor of Bloom County is the humor of The Simpsons and all that came after.
§ Finally, Francesco Francavilla has moved on to he latest hot TV show.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.