200703210426§ Top Shelf employee and THE SURROGATES writer Robert Venditti talks about getting an indie comic optioned at CBR:

“The first issue of the series debuted in July 2005, only a couple of weeks before Comic-Con International in San Diego,” Venditti explained to CBR News. “The story generated a healthy amount of press in the comics community, which in turn generated some interest in Hollywood. A fair amount of producers came by the Top Shelf booth at the convention as a result, and the discussions ranged from the calm — ‘This sounds really cool. Can I read more of the story?’ — to the more frenzied — ‘I want this right now, and I’m going to make you a star!’ It was all a bit shocking. I work for Top Shelf full-time, so not three hours earlier I was grimy from unloading boxes of books for the booth, and now here I was talking to people who make movies for a living.”

§ The Daily Cross Hatch continues to present intelligent, essential interviews with indie comics movers and shakers. Like this from Tony Millionaire talking about his Batman pitches:

I had one where Batman went completely broke. His corporation went completely broke. He was like, ‘should I throw this Batarang? These cost me $550 each. I’m not really sure I can afford to throw it. I should probably just run.’ And he had to sell all his cars and ride a bicycle around. If anyone sees him on a bicycle with his costume on, they’ll catch him, so he can’t even wear that anymore. He just has to wear a t-shirt and run around. They said, “no, we’re not going to do that” [laughs]. I’d like to do a story about the real Batman, what a real Batman would be like. Just some guy, who’s not really that rich. He’d just run around and try to figure out where the crime is. In my neighborhood, all he’d be doing is running up to cars where they’re selling drugs out the window.

§ DJ Coffman visits Platinum Studios where he is stunned by actual human contact:

We work our way back to Scott Mitchell Rosenberg’s office, and I’m greeted all along the way with excited employees who are really happy to meet me, which was weird. Weird in a great way, but one I’m not use to. I live a pretty hermetic lifestyle here, rarely leaving the office and work area, so to be thrown into this awesome environment with all these people telling me how awesome I am, yeah, it’s a crazy kind of weird.

Coffman’s long report includes many pics of the Platinum offices as well as a WWLA report.

§ Ryusuke Hamamoto, artist of Puchi Evangelion, and the Image book COMPASS demonstrates his working technisue in a series of YouTube vids at his site.

§ Speaking of WWLA, Tom McLean puts into words the ennui that many are experiencing:

Overall, the end result was enjoyable but underwhelming.

Part of the problem is that San Diego, WonderCon and now New York Comic-Con have set a high standard for comic cons as places that are packed full of fans, creators, celebrities and unique events – certainly more than any one person can see during the show.

Wizard shows on the other hand seem quite content to focus on mainstream comics and a few related areas, such as wrestling, Kiss fans and the IFL.

What’s surprisingly missing is the studio presence that was the original rationale for the company setting up a show in Los Angeles. While WWLA has a few Hollywood-focused panels — most notably the popular “Heroes” panel I’ll talk more about in a bit — and presentations from smaller studios like Lionsgate and small studio arms like Fox Atomic, the majors were nowhere in sight. Compared with the first WWLA, this area has actually shrunk for the show.

That first show saw Marvel and Fox send out producer Avi Arad and actor Chris Evans to preview “Fantastic Four.” This year, with the FF sequel and “Spider-Man 3” set for summer, there was nothing from either Fox or Sony. Warner Bros., which just hit it big with “300” and is working on a number of DC Comics-related projects, also was absent.

§ Local writer has way with words:

There are three kinds of people in the world: folks who realize comic books are a vibrant, dynamic and vital art form, and folks who disagree and are therefore pig-ignorant neo-peasant scum who probably listen to jam bands and think Reno 911! is funny.

§ Speaking of the vibrancy of comics, did you know they are not for kids any more? The LA Daily News presents a well-researched examination of this old saw bolstered by many many quotes:

People 25 and older aren’t the only ones reading and collecting. On the other hand, it’s the Gen X-ers who possess both the nostalgia for the heroes and villains of their youth, and the disposable income to feed the still-existing mania.

Coincidentally or otherwise, comic-book story lines are getting darker, the violence and language more graphic and sexually explicit. Ditto, their movie adaptations. Ryan Liebowitz, general manager of Golden Apple Comics in Northridge and Hollywood, estimates that customers younger than 18 account for 25 percent of his business.

“There’s a finite amount of books out there for all ages or just for kids,” says Liebowitz. “A lot of little kids can’t even buy ‘Family Guy’ or ‘The Simpsons.’ They’re using big words, and it’s a little bit smarter humor. For KISS, you typically get the older crowds, the ones who have been following the band since the 1970s,” he adds.


  1. Comics are as much for kids, as for anyone else. Just as books, movies, and music are. When I go into a comic book store these days, I feel like we adults are taking comics away from kids. As adults, we should try not to be so wrapped up in ourselves, and have some fun. I mean, where are our next batch of readers going to come from if we keep saying, “Sorry kid. You can’t buy that comic. It’s for adults.” It’s like we’re the guy that buys up all the new toys at the toy store, before any kids can get to them. Let’s give some back, because it was their’s in the first place.

  2. The writer for the Philly weekly left out another sect of people. Those who are insufferably full of themselves that they LOATHE to use the term graphic novel and that put down a pretty damn funny show in an effort to (painfully) make themselves appear ‘high brow’ yet ‘real’.

  3. Uh. I thought Grant Morrison (or Warren Ellis or Ed Brubaker or Mark Millar) wrote The Authority and Ennis wrote some kind of spin-off series?

    Philly boy needs a fact-checker.