Vaughan & Chiang's "Paper Girls" Builds a Familiar Yet Disconcerting World
Digital comics | The Korea Times takes a look at the comics market in that country, where government suppression of comic books in the 1990s (and school-sponsored book burnings even before that) has combined with the current demand for free digital material (in the form of the wildly popular “webtoons”) to create an uncertain environment for cartoonists trying to make a living from their work. “Unlike Japanese manga, which continues to drive a large part of the country’s publishing market and provide a creative influence to movies, music and video games, Korea’s cartoon culture was deprived of its opportunity to thrive,” said Lee Chung-ho, president of the Korea Cartoonist Association. “However, the most difficult process for us will be to find a sustainable business model. Readership has increased dramatically through webtoons, but you have no clear idea on how many of these readers will be willing to pay for content.” [The Korea Times]
Typically, I’ll spend most of Saturday in panels, but the first one I was interested in wasn’t until later in the morning, so I killed time taking in some of the more offbeat exhibitors, like Ben the Bubble Guy, a businessman who hires himself out for birthday parties, corporate events, funerals. Okay, maybe not funerals.
When it was time, I headed up to the fourth floor for the AV Club‘s panel on the Future of Superheroes.
This one has been making it’s way around the ‘net over the past few days … Paul Maybury, artist on Aqua Leung and the upcoming D.O.G.S. of Mars, used to work at Whole Foods and would regularly design promotional signs (like the one above) for the store where he worked.
Although it’s a pretty creative sign, apparently not everyone was a fan. He noted on his Tumblr blog last week, “I apparently offended a lot of people with it. Once older white lady didn’t like the angry black man yelling at her. And a Vegan didn’t like that Mr. T. pitied her because she wouldn’t eat meat.” Later he notes that he wasn’t actually fired, but “they just kind of blocked me from any sort of advances and left me with the option to more or less leave, which I did.”
He’s posted several of the signs over on his Tumblr; you can find some here, here and here. The Mr. T post was picked up by Cory Doctorow over at boingboing, a post which now has more than 100 comments … Maybury responded to some of the comments about whether or not he was a good Whole Foods employee here.
From Timely to Hepburn to Zatanna, Robot 6 now turns its gaze for its week-long themed sketchbook spotlight into the visage of star of screen, TV and sometimes even comics: Mr. T.
These sketches were accumulated by longtime comics fan Rico Renzi.
“I’ve been a comic convention-going-sketch-addict since I got my first Brian Stelfreeze Batgirl at Heroes Con in 1997,” Renzi says. “I started my Mr. T sketchbook at a local comic show, the Small Press Expo, in 2000, I think. While it’s cool to see independent comic artists’ take on your favorite superhero, at the time I was losing interest in those kinds of comics. Mr. T see seemed like someone who although he was a real person, was a cartoonish enough that he could be drawn quickly by pretty much anyone without reference.”
“It’s been a blast to see what people think of when they hear his name,” says Rico. “My first book is completely full, I’ve been thinking of starting a second volume. I miss getting Mr. T sketches!”
To see Renzi’s collection so far, he’s set up a blog at mrtsketchbook.tumblr.com.