An "X-Force" To Be Reckoned With - Marvel's Mutant Militia Turns 25
Italian artist Valeriano Fatica knows his way around produce. The food artist has done some pretty insane things with fruits and vegetables, like this Joker made out of a pumpkin or these Dragon Ball Z characters carved out of potatoes. But Fatica has shown a particular affinity for watermelons, and his latest creation may be his best use yet of the giant, round melons.
Ippudo, New York City’s premier ramen shop, will open the doors of its secret second-floor Ramen Bar for two days this week for an official, one-of-a-kind Marvel pop-up.
Held Thursday and Friday at Ippudo Westside (321 W. 51st St.), the even will feature Ramen Master Fumihiro Kanegae’s newest creation, “The Avengers Interactive Ramen.” There’s a catch, however: Just 40 bowls will be served at 5 p.m. each day, meaning it’s a pretty exclusive meal.
Earlier this year a Philadelphia microbrewery paid tribute to The Walking Dead with a beer containing smoked goat brains, but as difficult as it is to believe, that now pales in comparison — and in potential grossness — to what’s been cooked up.
London’s Metro reports that Fox TV U.K. has teamed with creative director Miss Cakehead and Chef James Tomlinson from Mess London to develop a hamburger that … tastes like human flesh. To promote the upcoming fifth season of The Walking Dead, and its Terminus storyline, of course.
Legal | Artists from around the world are drawing in support of Tunisian cartoonist Jabeur Mejri, who is serving a seven-and-a-half-year prison sentence for posting caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad online. Just two weeks after Tunisia adopted a new constitution that protects freedom of expression, Jabeur’s supporters have launched a “100 Cartoons for Jabeur” website and released a statement saying, “While freedom of expression and conscience are guaranteed in this founding text, the continued detention of Jabeur Mejri is contrary to the spirit and the text of the constitution.” [Yahoo News]
Publishing | Andrews McMeel’s AMP! division will publish Reading With Pictures: The Graphic Textbook, a collection of graphic stories on a number of topics, including math, history and social studies, that is designed to fit into the Common Core standards. The creators involved include Roger Langridge, Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey. While this is big news for Reading With Pictures, the organization behind the book, it’s also an interesting move for AMP!, which has been focusing on kid-friendly reprint collections of its parent company’s newspaper strips. [The Beat]
Thirty-six questions. Six answers. One random number generator. Welcome to Robot Roulette, where creators roll the virtual dice and answer our questions about their lives, careers, interests and more.
Today we are joined by Sam Humphries, writer of Uncanny X-Force, The Ultimates, Our Love Is Real, Sacrifice, Fanboys vs. Zombies, Higher Earth and more.
Now let’s get to it …
Comics | Last week a building fire destroyed the negatives for Dave Sim’s Cerebus: High Society, but George Peter Gatsis reports that more than half the 500 pages already had been scanned for the audio/visual digital edition (covering issues 26-50). For the other pages, Sim will be getting the best possible printed material and, hopefully, high-res scans. [Bleeding Cool]
Comics | Food writer Jon Watson addresses “the rise of foodie comics,” singling out Chew by John Layman and Rob Guillory: “It helps that the book is extremely well written, but I’m interested in a well-executed crossover of foodie culture into pop culture. It’s not often that happens when it doesn’t elicit a groan or feel forced. I think that, as food culture has grown of the last few decades, it is organically inspiring other art forms rather than feeling like an attempt at commercialization.” [The Atlanta Journal-Constitution]
As a devoted viewer of Chopped on Food Network, I’m likely more excited by this news than I have any right to be, but New York Comic Con has announced that celebrated chef Geoffrey Zakarian will be a spotlight guest, appearing on the “Food & Comics” panel and hosting an exclusive dinner at his restaurant The Lambs Club.
The newest Iron Chef, Zakarian’s culinary career spans 20 years, from his rise to prominence at Le Cirque in New York City to his tenure as executive chef at 21 Club to the opening of The Lambs Club in 2010. He also wrote the acclaimed cookbook Geoffrey Zakarian’s Town/Country.
The dinner at the Lambs Club, on Friday, Oct. 12, will be a fairly intimate affair: Limited to 16 fans, the guests will include Marvel senior vice president, and noted foodie, C.B. Cebulski, Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada and writer Jonathan Hickman. Tickets go on sale Sept. 5 at noon ET/PT.
This will mark, I believe, the third “Food & Comics” panel; the first, held last year at Chicago Comics & Entertainment Expo, featured Chef Rick Bayless, and the second, at NYCC, featured Chef Wylie Dufresne.
New York Comic Con will be held Oct. 11-14 at the Jacob Javits Center.
Every year Time Out New York bestows its Food & Drink Awards, with the magazine’s critics and readers selecting the best wining and dining the city has to offer. For the 2012 installment, however, the editors tried something a little different, enlisting Kill Shakespeare artist Andy Belanger to transform the winning chefs and barkeeps into Silver Age-style superheroes (with nods to Marvel’s Captain America, Iron Fist, Power Man and Silver Surfer, among others).
Check out some of Belanger’s Time Out New York illustrations below, and visit the magazine’s website for more. The Food & Drink Awards issue is on stands now.
Ryan Kelly, artist of Local and the upcoming Saucer Country, has posted a teaser on his blog for a new webcomic he’s doing with writer/chef Kat Vapid. Titled Cocotte, a word with a double meaning, Kelly describes it as a “frank, humorous, and often soul-crushing look into the world of cuisine and the professional kitchen environment, as well as a love letter to life in Minneapolis.” No word yet on when it launches, but we’ll keep you posted.
2011 was a great year for writer Sam Humphries; he and artist Steven Saunders self-published and self-distributed a successful one-shot called Our Love Is Real, which sold out several times and eventually was picked up by Image Comics. From there, he teamed up with artist Dalton Rose for a six-issue, self-published and self-distributed series called Sacrifice. The first issue came out last month and told the story of Hector, a time traveler/Joy Division fan who finds himself in the middle of the Aztec empire. The comic includes not only references to Aztec culture, but also pop music and the culinary delights of Rancho Peñasquitos.
Humphries has guest-blogged with us several times in the past, so when it was time to send out invitations to the big Robot 6 birthday bash, I put him at the top of the list. He brought gifts, too, in the form of a rundown of the various references included in the first issue of Sacrifice, a look at the Jade Edition cover variant of issue #2 by Wonder Woman artist Cliff Chiang and critical information on the healing powers of tacos. You can pre-order a physical copy of the second issue through TFAW.com, or you can find it at several comic shops. The first issue can be downloaded now via Graphicly or comiXology.
Now let’s hear from Sam …
The New York Comic Con officially opened its doors this afternoon, but comics publishers and distributors have been releasing announcements leading up to it all this week. Here’s a round-up of news from today, as well as some that hit earlier this week.
• DC Comics, who were having a pretty good week already, announced two creative team changes for the New 52. Ann Nocenti of Daredevil and Longshot fame will write Green Arrow starting with issue #7. She spoke to Comic Book Resources about her approach to the series: “I have a particular way of writing a comic. Comics are short. They are only twenty pages, so you can take a year of comics and that can be your opera, and the opera can have a lot of different passages in it. I kind of believe every issue should be a single story, just a complete story. But there is a momentum that forms like triptychs over it, and then it forms your big overtures, and then the whole thing ends up kind of operatic. I also want a beginning, middle and end, a classic short story approach to every single comic. What I do is I try to figure out, what is the kick in this comic, what is the main feeling I want to get, and everything in the comic has to serve that.”
• And Marc Bernardin (Monster Attack Network, The Highwaymen, The Authority) will take over the writing duties on Static Shock beginning with issue #7. “As a fan and as a writer, one of the great things about Static isn’t just that he’s a new hero, it’s also that he’s a young hero,” Bernardin told CBR. “He will make the mistakes of youth and, even though the New 52 is resetting a lot of heroes to their early days as do-gooders, there’s nothing quite like the fumblings of a teenager.”
The Foogos site is a wonderful amalgamation of food and pop culture logos, with comics icons and sports teams sharing the menu in equal amounts for a well-balanced diet. In addition to the Green Lantern limes and Hellboy chili you see here, the unnamed artist who runs the site also has Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle pizza, Skeletor pudding, Avengers applesauce, and much more. Just make sure you’ve eaten before you visit. It’s embarrassing to be caught licking the screen. I imagine.
It seems like Marvel may have missed an opportunity not releasing Captain America: The First Avenger this weekend, what with the big American-sized holiday coming up on Monday. But then again, the pre-movie merchandising/promotional machine is in full gear just in time for the Fourth of July, so maybe there’s a method to the madness. We’re celebrating the holiday weekend with my three nephews, all under the age of 10, who made their first trip to California yesterday … and what better way to start their weekend off than to get them a Captain America ice cream cake from Baskin-Robbins?
The cake is part of a bigger menu that includes a Super-Soldier Sundae, a Hydra Force Sundae and Super-Soldier Swirl ice cream (the flavor of the month). It includes a plastic Captain America that no doubt they’ll be fighting over before the day is over (like I’m gonna let them take it home) and, as you can see above, red, white and blue icing. The thing in the back is a stand-up you can put Cap on after the cake is gone.
Broadway | Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, the retooled $75 million Broadway musical, took in $1.7 million for the week ending this past Sunday, which is above the $1.2 million the producers have indicated they need to reach to stay viable. The amount made it the No. 3 musical for the week, after Wicked and The Lion King. [Associated Press]
Legal | Robert Corn-Revere, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s general counsel, discusses the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. EMA, which sought to ban the sale of violent video games to minors. He notes that the court drew upon the history of comic book censorship in reaching its conclusion to reject the ban: “Citing the amicus brief filed by the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, it noted the crusade against comics led by Dr. Frederic Wertham and observed that it was inconsistent with our constitutional traditions. The Court traced the history of censorship that targeted various media directed toward the young and held that restricting depictions of violence could not be justified under established principles of First Amendment law.” [CBLDF]
While “Robot Bakery” isn’t officially a new feature on this blog, maybe it should be. Bridget from Bake at 350 has made Wonder Woman cookies and she’s sharing! (The recipe anyway.)