§ Nice Art: Chris Arrant chats with Dean Haspiel about The Red Hook, his new comic for Line WEBtoon, the mobile-based comics company. IT’s set in Brooklyn and as you might expect from Haspiel, it’s from the streets:

Nrama: Stories are usually about heroes dealing with problems. What kind of problems does Sam Brosia have now, especially since he has the Omni-Fist?

Haspiel: I’ve been trying to figure out a way to answer this question without spoiling the drama. The Red Hook is a complex character. He’s a charming bad guy but he’s not evil. And, as corny as this may sound, the moral of his story is like the flip-side of a superhero-inspired Breaking Bad. Only, it’s more about “Breaking Good.”

§ Cartoonsit Julia Wertz is being evicted from her famous apartment, a tiny museum, and she’s selling off stuff to lighten her load and raise the money for the move. It’s another sad story of the end of artists living in New York City.

When I sat down to write this post about my impending apartment eviction, I initially wrote three dense pages with all the tedious, inflammatory details, but you know what, you already know the story. It’s a classic NYC real estate nightmare- girl pays way below market rate for a small but cute apartment for nearly 10 years, until her landlord kicks her out in order to renovate and charge 2k a month, an 150% rent increase. (The recent publicity about my apartment did not play a role in this- renovations are being done building wide) The eviction was sudden, and I’m ill-prepared, so I’m going to California to stay in my mom’s garage attic (cue existential meltdown) until I cobble together a better plan. Yes, this eviction is illegal, as I was not offered the option to stay, but I’m not fighting it, because it’s time to go home to the west coast. So I’m leaving NYC in mid or late May.


§ MUST READ! Vanity Fair magazine has a long history of spotlighting the imbroglios and bonhomie of all yesteryear’s parties, and Ben Schwartz’s profile of famed New Yorker cartoonist Peter Arno fits the bill just fine:

At 34, Arno was handsome, elegant, and famous, The New Yorker’s star artist since its founding, in 1925. “Our pathfinder artist,” editor Harold Ross called him, equal in Ross’s eyes to James Thurber and E. B. White and Helen Hokinson in defining his magazine’s voice and style. With a sexually charged wit (which he came by naturally, as one of the era’s notable roués) and the most innovative graphic mind in magazine cartooning, he resuscitated the single-panel cartoon as it was about to go the way of vaudeville and the silent movie. His collections sold enough to put him in penthouses. His audience ranged from Marie Harriman, who showed his work in her Picasso-laden gallery, to fans of CBS Radio’s Adventures of Ellery Queen, on which he guest-starred as an “armchair detective” to help solve the case of “The Gum-Chewing Millionaire.”

§ Elsewhere on the convention trail, former Beat contributor and noted convention expert Bob Calhoun, went to the Silican Valley Comic Con and had fun with Woz. A video captured the moments.

§ I guess I’ll eventually have something to say about MoCCA, but in the meantime, Barry and Leon of Secret Acres say it better than I could.


§ Here’s a story in the Daily News about comic books, but specifically the announcement that Storm Entertainment is doing a comic book about Sen. Elizabeth Warren. I really gotta hand it to Storm Entertainment, formerly Bluewater Comics. They have a checkered past with some of their dealings, but have been putting out these bio comics for more than a decade, and for more than a decade they’ve been getting press EVERYWHERE just for doing a comic about Warren, or Hilary, or Oprah or Barbara Walters or ANYONE AT ALL. Seriously, how do they do it? Remember when Walters held up her comic on The View? The publicity has never propelled Bluewater/Storm’s books into the sales stratosphere, but they must be doing something right.

§ Another tear jerker story! A father is hoping to sell his 5000 comic book collection at Emerald City Comic Con in order to help his daughter go to college:

A dad who literally sold himself at one point in order to keep buying more comic books is doing the cool/extreme-geek-dad thing to do and selling off his large collection of 5,000 books that took him decades to compile in the hopes of sparing his daughter the hellish burden of student loan debt. Seattle’s Al Sanders told Good Morning America that when he started looking at how much tuition was going to cost to send his daughter to Fisk University in Nashville, he realized that letting go of the lifelong collection, stored in 10 cardboard boxes of 500 each, might be one way to pay for it. His only child, Rose, is only 16, but she’s graduating high school early and starting college.

Since, as we know, comics are very under priced as collectibles, Sanders had better hope the other Sanders, Bernie, gets elected and Rose get a free college education.

§ Finally! The article you’ve been waiting for! Graphic Novels Explained

Graphic novels all have different, unique art styles to them, as well as stories. The art is usually the most examined by most, but others will take a look at both the art style and the story. Junior Alex Teeters said, “I don’t know which is more important to focus on, I just know that you can’t ignore one or the other. You need to see both parts to understand what the author is trying to say.”

Before you laugh at young Alex Teeters, or this story, you should know that the Express is the online student newspaper of Basehor-Linwood High School, and

It is produced by a staff of high school journalists who abide by the principle of journalism: to present facts and events truthfully and without bias.

Can YOU say the same? G watch SPOTLIGHT again. Maybe we should honor the hard work of the student journalist and listen to what these young readers are saying.

§ On the flip side, in Camden, NJ, one of the most underprivileged cities in the US, comics are being given to kids in school:

The fifth-graders at Henry L. Bonsall Family School in Camden got a different message than the one Phillip McNulty did when he was in school: Comic books are a true art form. “They did everything a teacher wants their students to do from a language arts perspective,” said teacher Dora Grande, after McNulty and his friend Ryan Brady visited her class over 10 weeks to teach them about comic books as part of a Rutgers University-Camden art residency program.

The third annual Camden Comic Con takes place this Saturday

Rutgers University-Camden’s third annual Comic Con takes place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday. More than 100 vendors will be at the lower level of the Athletic and Fitness Center, offering comics, memorabilia, art and merchandise. Speakers include Chris Claremont, who created Marvel’s Rogue, Gambit, Sabretooth and other characters; Bob McLeod, illustrator of Marvel’s “The New Mutants”; Larry Hama, a writer for the “G.I. Joe” and “Wolverine” comics in the 1980s and ’90s; Diana Leto, an artist who’s worked with Jim Henson Legacy, Sesame Street, Dark Horse and others; and more

. For a complete schedule and more information, visit


§ I dare you not to read a story that begins like this:

‘Chuk and Geek’ is the oldest comic book store in Moscow and the most hospitable one says Artyom Gabrelyanov, co-owner and chief editor of Bubble, the largest Russian publisher of original comics. (Eds: the name is a play on Chuk and Gek, a short story from the Soviet era, by Arkady Gaidar, about two boys) “Chuk and Geek is more than just a store,” says Gabrelyanov. “For many comic book fans it has become a ‘home away from home.’”

If you want to know more about the oldest comics stores in Moscow, they make about 3.5 million rubles ($51,700) per month from both stores, with costs of 2.2 million rubles ($32,500). (I would like to read stories on US comics shops with this level of candor.) Foreign comics have soared in price, so the Chuk and Geek gang are mostly selling naive Russian comics. Emerging scene alert!

§ Here’s the SDCC Unofficial Blog’s report on Hotelpocalypse. Rooms have been going out, but as usual it’s all topsy turvy and a lot of people have no hotel rooms.

However, as the day went on, things got a lot murkier. We witnessed hundreds of tweets sharing very similar circumstances, but very different results. Some who reported getting access to the form at 9:01 were being placed in Mission Valley. Some who got access to the form at 9:04 were being placed in the Westin Gaslamp downtown.

Among people I know, if you had a lowish number to start — say under 3000 — you got a decent room. But in my own household, every year I’ve gotten a room and my Comic-Con roommate hasn’t.

§ There’s a new table top game about whaling and it’s called Nantucket. There will never, ever be any jokes about this.

§ I guess there’s gong to be a US movie version of the manga Death Note starring white people, and it will be on Netflix.


  1. Glad to see Bob Calhoun correct the record about SVCC being San Jose’s first comic con. Big Wow was notable for bringing European artists Juanjo Guarnido and Claire Wendling to the US.

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