§ Nice Art: It should surprise no one that Black Widow #1 by Mark Waid, Chris Samnee and Matt Wilson was the talk of the newsstand last week. The book is quality in every line. Marvel previews issue #2 with a chat with Samnee, who is co plotting the book.
Marvel.com: You came into DAREDEVIL about a year into the run. How is launching BLACK WIDOW different from that experience so far?
Chris Samnee: With DAREDEVIL, though Marcos [Martin] and Paolo [Rivera]’s esthetics are fairly similar to my own, they set the tone on that book. I did my best to make it my own in those three plus years, but those guys cast a really long shadow. With BLACK WIDOW it was a chance for us to build something from the ground up. Mark, Jake, and I talked about how we wanted the book to feel right from the start and Matt and I had several conversations early on about things we could do to make this the next evolutionary step in what our stuff looks like together.
§ Satirical site Clickhole hit a little close to home with this headline: When This Boy With A Colostomy Bag Said He Was Sad There Were No Superheroes Like Him, Marvel Told Him It’s Absolutely Crucial For Superheroes To Have A Functioning Anus
The letter, written by Marvel editor-in-chief Axel Alonso and signed by every employee in the company, explained that while there are numerous superheroes on Marvel’s roster with disabilities, it would be impossible for there to be one with a colostomy bag, as it is 100 percent essential for superheroes to have bowels that function without issue. “A superhero’s job is very physical, and it’s just not feasible that a superhero could be effective in fighting crime if he or she is sporting an unwieldy external medical device like a colostomy bag—it’s vital that he or she has excellent digestive capabilities,” the letter read. “Although we recognize the importance of everyone seeing themselves represented in media, it’s an unavoidable fact that all superheroes must have complete control of their bowels, and we cannot pretend otherwise.”
…but HAS there ever been a superhero with a colostomy? Maybe it’s time.
§ AND YET this headline is REAL and it’s spectacular:Syrian refugees in Canada got housed in same hotel as VancouFur furry convention and the children loved it . It seems the annual furry conclave was held in a Vancouver hotel where some Syrian refugee children were being housed.
A message was given to all attendees at the convention that the hotel had been chosen as one of the temporary housing locations for the Syrian refugees in Canada, and that “a major concern that VancouFur has is ensuring that each and every one of the refugees (and attendees) feels welcome and safe and the fact that this is likely to be a major shock to them”. This is how Canada greets refugees “Keep in mind that they likely will not want to interact with you and consent is important to everyone,” the message added.
But it seems consent was happily given as the kids were fascinated by the adults in fur costumes. PLEASE NO DOWNER COMMENTS ON THIS ITEM. I WILL DELETE THEM.
— Dray (@LiveitRivet) March 8, 2016
§ Evan Narcisse praises this Rafael Grampa variant cover because we all should.
§ Apparently Captain America: Civil War is going to be six hours long. That is slightly shorter than a Hobbit movie. Just wear an adult diaper and all will be well.
§ TCAF has announced more guests:Marguerite Abouet and Last Man’s Balak and Bastien Vivès. Whoo hoo! The trio joins Boulet on the French multimedia cool person list.
§ WonderCon is in a couple of weeks and 3-Day Badges Are Almost Gone — but you can still get a few:
We’re down to our last few WonderCon 2016 3-Day badges, and once they’re gone, they’re gone! We have great things planned for all 3 days, and with Saturday badges already sold out, this is your last chance to get in the door on Saturday and see the world-famous WonderCon Masquerade, in the world-famous Microsoft Theater that night. We’ll be posting our complete 2016 Program Schedule tomorrow, but by then it might be too late to get a badge for all the programs you’re going to want to see.
WonderCon is a bit of an unknown this year with its relocation to LA, but it has a pretty impressive comics guest list, and usually a lot of media news and presentations. For those heartbroken by missing out on San Diego, this could be a more relaxed alternative. Don’t turn up your nose!
§ Sad news from India where cartoonist S V Padmanabh is reported to have taken his own life under very sad circumstances.
He was in debt, and under pressure from recovery agents, one of his friends told Express. In a tragic irony, his last published cartoon took an apparent dig at celebrity defaulter Vijay Mallya. ‘Like loan recovery vehicles, we could soon have loan recovery planes,’ the caption reads, as two businessmen stand around, with a plane flying in the background.
— Mark Millar (@mrmarkmillar) March 9, 2016
§ Continuing the fun we reported on yesterday, Mark Millar tweeted another mystery cast member of the Empress movie.
§ BUT The Outhouse has revealed that this is another (successful) attempt to get attention from Millar, with the identity of the “Hollywood actress” pretty convincingly shown to be a pal of Millar’s. In retrospect it was all too good to be true, but a great publicity ploy nonetheless!
§ Alex Robinson’s Our Expanding Universe came out from IDW/Top Shelf last year and didn’t get as much attention as I thought it would. It’s another one of Robinson’s freewheeling meditations on contemporary life, with another Brooklyn-esque cast reaching mid-life and its familiar and inevitable crises. A solid book from a solid author. Johanna Draper Carlson has a review:
The characters aren’t the same, but they’re recognizable in the same ways the BOP cast were. The significant difference is that Our Expanding Universe features older adults. Instead of wondering when their lives will get started, these characters are dealing with impending parenthood and feeling trapped where they’ve ended up. Robinson’s stark scenes and unflattering caricatures have the feel of a sketchbook, peering in when people aren’t aware they’re being observed (or they might present themselves more optimistically). Like many of the Great American Novels and their explorations of the male psyche this work evokes, the focus is on the guys. The few female characters aren’t nearly as well-developed or relatable, and sometimes, they descend into cliche. There are some non-guy scenes, but they revolve around family members and pressure to have babies and what the guys are doing. That’s realistic for many women, but I found it disheartening. After all, the biggest single change when having a baby is the physical one to the mother’s body, but that isn’t even acknowledged here.
§ Along those same lines, Anya Davidson reviews Patience and has the most nuanced take on it yet.
The male ego gone awry has been a theme in Dan Clowes’ work since the beginning of his long and spectacular career. One thing that makes his best work so indispensable is his rigorous examination of the topic from many perspectives, both male and female. Even very troubled characters become sympathetic thanks to his uncanny ear for dialogue and his trenchant sense of humor.
This is a positive but critical review of Patience, the first that’s come out, and ironically, it’s published by the publisher of the book. This is truly the state of comics criticism and web journalism these days, but I’ll take what I can get. § Robot 6 is still one on the most distinguished blogs out there with a lineup of all-star writers. However, in something little noted in the general comics blogosphere diaspora, it’s almost all about toys and merchandise now. Which is fine, especially when they write about a Darth Vader toothpick dispenser because that is really where the world stands now.
§ Not comics: Blerds Online asks Is The WWE Racist? which, I mean, OF COURSE IT IS. Always has been. But some troubling evidence is laid out in the piece. https://www.instagram.com/p/BCvVI59h7qg/
§ Finally, artist Ramon Perez experiences the saddest part of being an artist.
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.