200709171239§ Perhaps the ultimate sign of the acceptance of graphic novels as a form of literature is when they are not spotlighted in a dog-on-legs way but merely as another example of the treatment of a theme as this NYT story on THE HOMELESS CHANNEL does:

“The Homeless Channel” assumes a similar inside-television perspective, taking the point of view of a producer named Darcy, who creates a 24-hour channel and turns cameras on the homeless. The stark visuals in the graphic novel, written and drawn by Matt Silady, disguise its subtlety. Darcy sees her channel as a form of activism, a way to give the homeless a voice and visibility. But the novel engages an essential question: Is she also exploiting them, as her critics charge? Like “Great World of Sound,” the book goes beyond the basic issue of who’s exploiting whom and acknowledges the hardest fact about reality television: The genre is an ethical mess, and we like to watch anyway. No one gets out quite clean, on either side of the camera.

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§ Spidey poised for blitz with promotional partners :

Sony cast a wide net out to brands whose demographics were as broad as the film’s. All partners are new to the DVD launch except for Pringles, which also paired with Sony for Spider-Man 3’s theatrical re-lease in May. Total efforts from the studio and partners to promote the DVD will comprise several million dollars in marketing.

“Because the Spider-Man franchise spans a wide age and psychographic demographic, we had a lot of promotional partners to consider,” said Lexine Wong, senior-evp Worldwide Marketing at Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Culver City, Calif. “We chose those brands that could encapsulate Spider-Man 3’s brand essence while promoting its availability on DVD/Blu-ray at our DVD retailers as well as directly to consumers in other channels of distribution.”

§ Japan’s otaku politico Taro Aso is not expected to win a run-off election but he’s still down with the kids:

Aso also commands a following among youth who relate to his his love for Japanese “manga” comic books.

“He has a great personality,” said Yoshiyuki Yamada, 28. “I like how he’s trying to get young people interested in politics by speaking about manga.”

§ Hype Alert: John Higgins profiled for work on Beat-edited project:

It’s just as well Higgins wasn’t bogged down: “The deadline for Hills was so tight, we had no time to pussy around with the direction or changes, which made it a joy (except for the deadline) for me to work on. This meant we had to get it right first time, which suited me as I hate being directed too much, the editor should: either hire you for your expertise and trust you to do the job, or they should get someone else.”

§ CBR interviews artist Andrea Offerman, whose work appears in FLIGHTS #4

I went to Med school in Lubeck, Germany. When I graduated High School I wanted to get an education in art, but was afraid of the reality of making a living as an artist. I was afraid that I would struggle and loose interest in making art if I “had” to do it every day to pay the bills. So I enrolled in Med school because I was always very interested in the subject matter. Studying the subject was really cool, but the two years were also terrifying partly because I was confronted with exams in many subjects I was terrible in, such as Chemistry and Physics. The subject that took up the most time was Anatomy, which actually was my favorite. But studying for that subject involved dissecting bodies every day for hours on end. It was very interesting, but also tore on the nerves to be one of 10 people huddled around one body cutting and tearing and pushing each other aside to find muscles and nerves. I remember many macabre moments.

§ Spurge interviews indie comics documantarian Chris Brandt

BRANDT: There were some people there. Terry Moore… Ron Turner. Then there were people I couldn’t even get in the extras. Jennifer Daydreamer, and Sam Henderson. I really like Sam a lot and some of the things he said were genius and weren’t covered by any other people. But they didn’t come out in a fluid enough manner, and he wasn’t comfortable enough in front of the camera. I really wanted to have a film where someone who wasn’t into comics at all, and came into it looking for an uncomfortable person to label as a geek, wouldn’t be able to say: “I knew that’s what this was about. I don’t have to listen to that.” I was very conscious of thwarting preconceptions an audience might have. It was a propaganda piece in that way.

200709171245§ The Baltimore Sun interviews photocollage comics artist Steven Parke on his new graphic novel MEDUSA’S DAUGHTER:

Even in the ever-morphing world of the graphic novel, Steven Parke’s illustrations stand out. Instead of drawing, he uses photographs to tell a story. But he doesn’t just point his camera and shoot. Parke manipulates his images digitally, lifting pieces from different shoots, tinkering with the lighting. The results duplicate reality, but with a twist.