§ Mark Evanier reports the passing of Betty Sinnott wife of artist Joe.news from me – ARCHIVES.

§ The Bad Lit blog reports on the Golden Apple’s grand opening and Stan Lee’s appearance:

Then the main event came outside to give the store his blessing: Stan “The Manâ€? Lee, who walked out to thunderous applause. Stan definitely had the vibe of “Please don’t make me actually talk to any comic book fans today,â€? which is not to say that I blame him. The poor man could have been trampled. But he was in his typical, jovial, self-effacing persona, downplaying his role in comics history, e.g. when Sharon introduced him as an “iconâ€? Stan quipped, “One of these days I’m going to have to look that up in the dictionary and find out what it means.â€? He was there to praise the Golden Apple, which he did, and of course throw out a trademark “Excelsior!â€?

§ The New Yorker has a long profile of Will Wright, creators of the Sims. Wright speakas of his new game SPORE.

For the past six years, Wright has been working on a new game, which will be released in 2007. It is anticipated with something like the interest with which writers in Paris in the early twenties awaited Joyce’s “Ulysses.â€? At first, Wright called the project Sim Everything, but a few years ago he settled on the name Spore. The game draws on the theory of natural selection. It seeks to replicate algorithmically the conditions by which evolution works, and render the process as a game. Conceptually, Spore is radical: at a time when most game makers are offering ever more dazzling graphics and scenarios and stories, Wright and his backer, Electronic Arts, are betting that players want to create the environments and stories themselves—that what players really like about games is exploring what Wright calls “possibility space.â€? “Will has a reality-distortion field around him,â€? his former business partner, Jeff Braun, told me. “He comes up with the craziest idea you’ve ever heard, and when he’s finished explaining it to you the world looks crazy—he’s the only sane person in it.â€?

§ Don’t forget, you can read all those HEROES online comics here.

§Yet another pundit weighs in on what must be viewed as one of 2006’s signature stories: the plethora of crappy CGI movies about funny animals:

Why are you so lame? Why don’t you have a single original idea left in your collective head? Why do you hate audiences? Why do you continue to crank out by-the-numbers animated films that hold ticket-buying families and animation fans in contempt while trying to sell them tie-in merchandise at the same time?

Why do “Madagascarâ€? and “The Wildâ€? and “Open Seasonâ€? and “Flushed Awayâ€? all have the same plot? How many domesticated menageries of circle-of-life-defying zoo pals actually find themselves tossed into the wilderness on a regular basis, learning the true meaning of family and home in the process?

§ Image Comics writer Derek Ruiz suffered a house fire and had no apartment insurance. Commiserations and help at the Image Comics board.

§ Moroccan wins Iran’s Holocaust cartoon contest:

A Moroccan won first prize on Wednesday in Iran’s International Holocaust Cartoons Contest, which had sparked outrage in Israel, the West and among Jewish groups.

Whoop tee fucking doo.