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Comics A.M. | The comics Internet in two minutes

From "Metro"

From "Metro"

Legal | An Egyptian court on Saturday officially banned Metro, considered that country’s first graphic novel, and found author Magdy al Shafee and publisher Mohammed al Sharqawi guilty of printing and distributing a publication infringing public decency. The two were fined the equivalent of about $916; they could have received up to two years in prison. Shafee has vowed to fight the ruling.

Shafee and Sharqawi were arrested in April 2008 after police raided the publisher’s offices and confiscated all copies of Metro, which centers on a young software designer in a modern and corrupt Cairo who turns to bank robbery to repay underworld loan sharks. Retailers were immediately ordered to remove the book from their shelves. You can read a translated excerpt of Metro here. [Zawya]

Legal | President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo of the Philippines last week signed into law the Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, which bans real and “virtual” child pornography, including comic-book depictions. [Anime News Network]

Disney and Marvel

Disney and Marvel

Business | The Wall Street Journal breaks down how much Marvel’s top executives and directors stand to make in cash and stock once the Disney deal is finalized. David Maisel’s $20.4 million is a distant second to Isaac Perlmutter’s widely reported $1.6 billion. Yes, that’s a “B.” [Deal Journal]

Legal | An Arizona attorney and inventor who in 2000 won a lawsuit against Marvel over a toy web-shooter has taken the company back to court over royalties he claims he’s owed. [Arizona Daily Star]

Publishing | Pádraig Ó Méalóid uncovers early evidence of Mick Angelo’s copyright to Marvelman. [Slovobooks, via Forbidden Planet International]

Publishing | Mark Siegel, editorial director of First Second Books, gets a brief profile. [Shelf Awareness, via The Comics Reporter]

Libraries | Librarian Robin Brenner examines circulation figures for her graphic novel collection and discovers, among other things, that she needs to buy more Daredevil. There’s plenty of numbers-crunching that makes for interesting reading. [Good Comics for Kids]

Absolute DC: The New Frontier

Absolute DC: The New Frontier

Comics | Tom Spurgeon begins compiling a list of the best superhero stories of the decade. It’s only a first draft, but he makes some excellent choices (I’d love to see his reasoning for the inclusion of 52, though). [The Comics Reporter]

Comics | Graeme McMillan lays out why James Rhodes (aka War Machine) is comics’ “ideal” black superhero. [io9.com]

Sales charts | The top of this installment of The New York Times graphic-novels bestseller list looks the same as the previous one, with The Book of Genesis Illustrated, Logicomix and the eighth volume of Vampire Knight leading their respective categories. [The New York Times]

Creators | Matt Price talks with writer Neil Kleid about his graphic novels Brownsville and The Big Kahn. [Nerdage, The Oklahoman]

Red String

Red String

Creators | Gina Biggs discusses her Rising Stars of Manga entry-turned-online romance series Red String. [Sequential Tart]

Anime | Yuka Hayashi provides a depressing snapshot of the Japanese animation industry: “A shrinking population of children in Japan has discouraged toy makers, television networks and other traditional sponsors from funding new programs. That has driven many anime studios—most of which are small shops — toward making animated soft porn and violent movies targeted at adult audiences. At the same time, YouTube and other free Internet services have hurt sales of DVDs … Morale is low. Industry executives estimate nine out of 10 new workers quit within three years, with the many talented employees leaving for better-paying jobs in areas like videogames.” [The Wall Street Journal]

Internet | Wikipedia is hemorrhaging volunteers editors, clocking a net loss of 49,000 in the first three months of 2009 (compared  to 4,900 in the same period the previous year). [The Wall Street Journal]

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Comments

10 Comments

“…reasoning for the inclusion of 52…” in “…the best superhero stories of the decade…”

Can’t be done. I enjoyed 52 when it was coming out, but I’d never read it again. If it is being included because of its oddity factor of being a weekly, that would not make it a true ‘best’ story.

Seriously, you’re slagging on “52″? Because there are more than a couple other “reeeaally?” choices on that long list. Let’s start with “All-Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder” and take it from there. I’ll read “52″ again some day. I couldn’t say that of this decade’s Frank Miller output.

Actually I’m more curious about “I’m running a pretty tight definition of superhero comic.”

Because, really? For example: Sleeper? Well, there were superheroes in it, occasionally, mostly getting beat up by supervillains. Selina’s Big Score? I don’t see how that comes close to being a superhero comic.

Which is fine, because there’s really no way you can do something like this without running into issues over the definition of “superhero.” I just find it really funny that he said “I’m running a pretty tight definition of superhero comic.”

A pretty good list! Which 52 definitely deserves to be on. ;) There’s some very compelling stuff in there. Not all of it, but a few of the through-lines definitely lead to me to the conclusion that it should make the cut.

“Tom Spurgeon begins compiling a list of the best superhero stories of the decade. It’s only a first draft, but he makes some excellent choices (I’d love to see his reasoning for the inclusion of 52, though).”

I understand the inclusion of 52 simply on the grounds of its format. The fact that it turned out to be pretty good besides is just gravy.

The Authority is a pretty serious oversight.

…hm. Actually, I suppose, strictly speaking, that Ellis’s run on The Authority concluded before 2000. And I can see leaving off Millar’s run in favor of The Ultimates.

Still and all, The Authority pretty much defined the past decade’s worth of superhero team books, and I’m not sure the fact that it misses that cutoff by a few months should really disqualify it.

52 is the one you’re having a problem with? Really? Not All-Star Batman and Robin?

And aside from the part of the list I have personal problems with (IMO, a “superhero” comic should contain superheroes, not just superhumans with costumes), a good bit of that list consists of stories from prior decades, recollected. I can’t agree with that. Its like saying he couldn’t think of 83 stories from this decade because it was so poor. Which, okay if you think that? That’s okay. But…just admit to that rather than artificially inflate the list.

Point is–I shouldn’t be seeing stories from pre COIE, on this list.

@Wraith

How is Brubakers Catwoman not a superhero comic? That’s just fucking ridiculous.
Maybe you should read some of those early Batman or Superman stories.

I like all star Batman though. Its the closest thing to James Ellroy writing Batman you’re ever going to get. Too bad Jim Lees insanely cross hatched artwork and near Liefeldian grasp of anatomy kind of ruins the whole thing.

@ Maddhatter: You were doing great there until you tried to tell us All-Star Batman was a good comic. And THEN you told us that the art was the problem. Ahahaha…ASBARTBW has many problems…art isn’t one of them.

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