Today Pop Candy’s Whitney Matheson did something that some consider too revealing even in this socially networked, airport x-ray’d age: She posted 20 movies from her Netflix “Watch Instantly” queue. Like anyone else’s, it’s a motley crew of movies made possible by a massive library of films and the power to watch any of them at any time with a few clicks of a mouse — a blend of “comfort food” you want access to at all times, unwatched stuff you’re dying to see at the next available opportunity, major investments of time or energy you haven’t been prepared to make just yet, “eat your vegetables” fare you know you ought to watch eventually, and goofy guilty pleasures you’re simply tickled to be able to watch whenever you feel like it.
This got me thinking. I know there are any number of logistical and financial reasons why such a thing doesn’t exist for comics. But we comics readers are an imaginative bunch, no? And today I choose to imagine a world where I can load up pretty much any book I can think of and read to my heart’s content. So here’s what my imaginary “Read Instantly” queue would look like, circa today. Check it out, then let us know what’s on your queue in the comments!
Comics College is a monthly feature where we provide an introductory guide to some of the comics medium’s most important auteurs and offer our best educated suggestions on how to become familiar with their body of work.
This month we’re looking at the career of a relative newcomer to the comics industry, Mr. Kevin Huizenga.
Hello and welcome once again to What Are You Reading?, where the Robot 6 crew talk about the comics and graphic novels that they’ve been enjoying lately. Our special guest this week is comics journalist and critic Dirk Deppey of Journalista and The Comics Journal fame.
To see what Dirk and the Robot 6 crew have been reading lately, read on …
On his blog, the great cartoonist Kevin Huizenga has posted some shots of The Wild Kingdom, his upcoming (and overdue) collection from Drawn & Quarterly starring his trademark everyman character Glenn Ganges. Okay, it’s not Wonder Woman in ’90s-Superboy’s jacket, but I for one am pretty darn excited.
Ever stumble across a comics treasure trove when you least expected it?
The other day I was looking around for the websites of artists associated with the late, lamented Buenaventura Press when I clicked a random link USSCatastrophe, the site of cartoonist Kevin Huizenga. Suddenly I found myself looking at a hidden repository of out-of-print comics by an astonishing range of cartoonists from throughout the history of the medium. An entire book of dog cartoons by Barnaby artist Crockett Johnson … early minicomics by two of my favorite altcomix artists, Dave Kiersh and John Hankiewicz … crazy-gorgeous strips and cartoons by C.C. Beck, Abner Dean, and Garret Price … links to, samples from, and miniature reviews of dozens more titles … sure, some of the links are broken — it’s been years since the stuff was updated, it seems — but what’s there is more than enough to keep me blissed out on hidden gems for hours on end.
Have you ever wandered into a similar motherlode of comics goodness online? Superheroes or scanned minicomics, a killer collection of original art or a webcomic you never knew existed, a site full of classic strips or a gallery of stunning covers — whatever it is, post your links in the comments. Face it, tiger — you’ve just helped thousands of readers kill an afternoon!
Every day people post comics on the Internet. Here are a few that caught our eyes.
Broken Lines by Tom Pappalardo
Sometimes, it feels like there are too many comics out there.
I know, I know; that’s not exactly the most popular opinion to hold, never mind share on a website devoted to comics and the worship thereof, but we all know it’s true. I’m far from the only one who sees solicitations for months ahead, or lists of that week’s new releases, and has at least one “Seriously? There’s really enough of a market for that?” moment. It’s easiest to do when looking at, say, Marvel’s upcoming releases and counting what’re essentially seven monthly Avengers books (Adjectiveless, New, Secret, Academy, alternating bi-monthlies Children’s Crusade and Prime and, of course, New Ultimates and Ultimate Avengers, for those who were wondering about my math), but all it takes is one step inside the non-premier publishers section of Diamond’s Previews to realize that there’s a lot of noise hiding the signal in the world of indie publishers, as well. Continue Reading »
Every day people post comics on the Internet. Here are a few that caught our eyes.
Nevermind The Bollocks, Here’s a Comic! by Nomi Kane
Critically acclaimed comics creators: They’re just like us! Take Kevin Huizenga, for example. Sure, his work in his series Or Else and Ganges has gotten him labeled the best cartoonist of his generation. But he geeks out over other people’s comics just like you and me — and even draws their characters as a tip o’ the fanboy cap.
Check out the STL Drawing Club blog for Huizenga’s renditions of characters by Osamu Tezuka, Richard Scarry, Alain Saint-Ogan, Jim Woodring, Kiyohiko Azuma (see Yotsuba Koiwai at right) and probably even more I’m not recognizing. (There’s a pretty badass Dan Zettwoch drawing of the biker gang from Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure in there, too.)
And don’t forget the killer fan art drawings he posted on his own blog, including characters from Johnny Ryan’s Prison Pit, CF’s Powr Mastrs, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories. Fandom can be fun!
“Postcard from Fielder 2″ by Kevin Huizenga
“The Miracle” by Johnny Ryan
Elementary, my dear Ganges! Wildly acclaimed, prodigiously talented cartoonist Kevin Huizenga has taken a break from chronicling the vagaries of our daily existence in his series Ganges and (the late, lamented) Or Else to take on the greatest detective in literary history and his arch-nemesis. (No, not Batman and the Joker, but I like the way you think.)
At his blog, Huizenga has posted a two-page comic featuring the first and final face-to-face confrontations between none other than Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty. The strip is part of the Famous Fictional Villains show at St. Louis’s Mad Art Gallery, curated by Huizenga’s friend, fellow cartoonist, and occasional collaborator Dan Zettwoch. The opening reception for the show — which features baddies ranging from Macbeth‘s witches to Alien‘s facehugger, interpreted by Zettwoch, Huizenga and over a dozen other artists — takes place tonight from 7pm to 11pm.
Kevin Huizenga has a two-page strip in the Italian magazine Internazionale and gracefully decided to share the comic, sans dialogue with the rest of the Internet.
I somehow missed this in Tucker Stone’s report from MoCCA last week, but luckily Heidi over at the Beat caught it — Stone spoke with John Kerschbaum about his future projects, and the creator revealed that he’s working on this year’s Bart Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror book for Bongo Comics.
Kerschbaum isn’t the only one working on the book, though; as you can see below in the solicitation copy that Bongo was kind enough to send us, they’ve recruited a Murderer’s Row of creators, including Jeffrey Brown, Kevin Huizenga, Matthew Thurber and many more, and it’s edited by Sammy Harkham of Kramers Ergot fame:
Bart Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror #15
Edited by Sammy Harkham
48 pages/standard format/color/humor
UPC: 01511 (7-98342-02851-5)
Guest edited by Sammy Harkham, the award-winning creator of the popular Kramers Ergot anthology, this year’s issue is a jam-packed with some of the most idiosyncratic (and weirdest) takes on “The Simpsons” universe ever. Among Halloween-inspired short strips by such visionary cartoonists as Jordan Crane (Uptight), C.F. (Powr Mastrs), Will Sweeney (Tales from Greenfuzz), Tim Hensley (MOME), and John Kerschbaum (Petey & Pussy), are four featured tales of inspired Simpsons lunacy: heralded artists Kevin Huizenga (Ganges, Or Else) and Matthew Thurber (1-800 Mice, Kramers Ergot) collaborate on a weird and wild story equal parts Lovecraftian eco-horror and Philip K. Dick identity comedy. Jeffrey Brown (Incredible Change-Bots, Clumsy) does a creepy and suitably pathetic story featuring Milhouse in a “Bad Ronald”-inspired tale of murder and crawl space living. Harkham and Ted May (INJURY) pull out all the stops for a tragic monster tale of unrequited love, bad karaoke, and body snatching at Moe’s Bar. Ben Jones (Paper Rad) does the comic of his life with an epic tale of how bootleg candy being sold at the Kwik-E-Mart rapidly spirals out of control into an Invasion of The Body Snatchers-like nightmare of a Springfield filled with cheap bootleg versions of familiar characters. And nobody does squishy, sweaty, and gross like up and coming cartoonist Jon Vermilyea (MOME), who outdoes himself with “C.H.U.M.M.,” a C.H.U.D.-inspired parody featuring everybody’s favorite senior citizen, Hans Moleman!
With a cover by Dan Zettwoch, Bart Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror #15 is like nothing you’ve ever seen, and is sure to be one of the most talked about comics of the year by alternative comic readers and Simpsons fans of all ages!
This goes on my “must buy” list.
Continuing our occasional series looking at how small press and indie comics publishers are weathering the downturn in the economy, not to mention Diamond’s recent policy changes, today we’re talking with Drawn and Quarterly’s Associate Publisher Peggy Burns.
D&Q rather unintentionally became regarded as one of the first martyrs of Diamond’s new cut-off policy when two of their serialized comics, Sammy Harkham’s Crickets and Kevin Huizenga’s Or Else, were cancelled. The fact that said cancellations were due to the separate decisions of the artists themselves and not the publisher or Diamond didn’t matter much at the time; its close proximity seemed to have a direct cause and effect.
I was curious as to what Burns had to say about that matter and the industry climate in general, since she’s one of the most intelligent and candid people working behind the scenes in comics today. She didn’t disappoint and I’d like to thank her for taking the time to respond to the plethora of questions I emailed her.
I don’t really want to get into a numbers game with our authors whose comics fell below or near the Diamond minimum. Obviously, the titles (Or Else, Lucky, Crickets) that have been announced as ending in their pamphlet form hovered around the minimum, though the conversation with Or Else happened before the minimum news. Ending a series is not something we want to do. The artist wanted to tell their story in this form, and we have the job of telling this form is no longer viable. It’s not an easy decision and wasn’t fun to do.