INTERVIEW: Gail Simone Guides 'Blockbuster Update' of Red Sonja, Vampirella and Dejah Thoris
The Eisner Awards, arguably the most prestigious in the comics industry, will be presented July 25 during Comic-Con International. Among the assortment of awards given to artists, writers and colorists, there’s an odd little thing that’s a relative newcomer: the Best Digital Comic Award. Here’s the criteria: “The best digital comic category is open to any new, professionally produced long-form original comics work posted online in 2012.” They have to have a unique domain name, and they have to be “online-exclusive for a significant period” before being available in print.
Rather odd, considering that many of this year’s nominees barely qualify under those parameters. A “long-form comic” suggests an extended, dramatic story. The Oatmeal doesn’t really qualify (unless you consider the bid for a Tesla museum to be a real-life epic). High Crimes technically has a domain name, but it directs you to comiXology for digital download. It’s all part of the challenge in determining what, exactly, a “digital comic” is. Looking at previous nominees, there are several that don’t fit neatly within the rules.
Comic book awards. You can’t live with them, you can’t live without them. On the one hand, there are several challenges to clear. Who’s worthy of nomination? If it’s “Best Digital Comic,” what are you awarding it for — the way it takes advantage of its online environment, or the content? Generally, it’s the content, but if that’s the case, shouldn’t it be competing in the existing comic categories rather than be banished to the sidelines? (Several webcomics, including The Adventures of Superhero Girl, have been in contention in other categories … but only after their digital content has been converted in the traditional currency of ink and pressed wood pulp, as God intended.)
Jamie Hewlett has already produced work concerned with ecological concerns before: His band Gorillaz’s third studio album Plastic Beach often ruminates on imagery inspired by the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Now he’s taken part as one of a wealth of artists and designers who’ve created Christmas cards as part of Greenpeace’s “Save Santa’s Home” campaign.
It seems Nicholas Gurewitch of Perry Bible Fellowship fame is at it again. And he’s leaving comics for the high plains.
Last night, the celebrated cartoonist released online the first part of a 12-part Western serial movie titled Trails of Tarnation. According to the website, it follows “the exploits of Derek and Jeff, two cowboys on the run from the corrupt Sheriff Maynard Lumbar.”
The first episode, titled “Black Coffee,” is less about being on the run and more about drinking a bad cup of joe. Gurewitch created the film in collaboration with Derek Walborn and Jeff Stanin (who stars in the serial).
Although best known for his comics work, Gurewitch studied film at Syracuse University; his comics were just a part-time gig for the school newspaper.
And there was much rejoicing (yay): I fired up my RSS reader this morning when what to my wondering eyes should appear but a new Perry Bible Fellowship comic strip by Nichols Gurewitch! Reunited and it feels so good.
Meanwhile, the infrequency of PBF updates is explained in part by Gurewitch’s forays into animation; click the link and check the sidebar on the left for links to several shorts he wrote for the BBC. This one’s my favorite:
This interview with Perry Bible Fellowship creator and Strange Tales contributor Nick Gurewitch by our own Sean T. Collins is a fun read for many reasons, one of which is the fact that Gurewitch has a couple pieces of news for fans of his work.
First, he reveals that despite a long delay since we last saw one, he has more PBF strips in the works. “And for the record, I haven’t put PBF to bed–I just haven’t had time to do any more comics. I’ve got some that I’ve got poised and ready to go,” he told Collins.
Second, he’s also working on some additional strips for Marvel. “I wanted to do a Galactus strip, but I think I’m a little behind schedule. I have to give Jody a call and see if it’s okay if I get an extension,” he said, later adding, “I’m gonna have Galactus recruit Magneto for what appears to be a heraldship, but I think it might end with Magneto being placed on a fridge, maybe holding up Galactus’s kid’s report card. I gotta finish it.”
He also talks about working with the BBC on an animated project, Bono and more. Go check it out.