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Have you seen the video of the baby who plays happily with an iPad but gets frustrated when she tries to tap and swipe a print magazine? That’s what I thought of when I heard that Diamond Comics Distributors has inked a deal with Rovio, the company that makes the insanely popular Angry Birds game, to distribute Angry Birds books. Really? Angry Birds books? But when I read the press release, I realized that it’s actually kind of cool—the books include an egg cookbook and two finish-the-drawing books, so they are interactive and fun, as opposed to, say, an Angry Birds novel, which couldn’t help but be boring.
Anyway, Diamond will be the exclusive distributor for the books, which start rolling into bookstores later this month. First up is Angry Birds Bad Piggies Egg Recipes, which combines egg thievery with egg cookery and may be the first-ever action cookbook. Later this month, we will see Angry Birds: The Big Red Doodle Book and Angry Birds: The Big Green Doodle Book, two books filled with unfinished drawings for readers to complete and improve as they see fit. (You know, it seems like this unfinished-drawings racket might be a good one for some more mainline comics artists to get into.) More books are planned for next year.
Mash-ups have become a staple of modern culture. From the mash-ups of music albums to movies and virtually anything else. But I think this here might be the best comic mash-up yet.
Created by Ryan Sohmer and Tyler Walpole for Sohmer’s The Gutters webcomic series, it’s a great idea in theory but Walpole’s expert art here really shoots it over the top.
If you’ve not reading The Gutters, you’re missing out — it’s the closest thing the comics industry has gotten to editorial cartoons focused on our medium.
Yes it can.
In an article in the April 2011 edition of Wired UK, reporter Tom Cheshire goes in depth with the founders and principal people behind Rovio, the company that created Angry Birds. The article describes how co-founder Mikael Hed wrote a webcomic series called August Jessor prior to Angry Birds’ success — and surprisingly, the archived webcomic is still online, although not updated since 2007. The company he founded with his cousin Rovio developed art for several game companies before they struck gold in 2010 Angry Birds.
And although the success of Angry Birds has taken away from any comics work as of late, the entrepreneurial company has plans for the concept to reach out to TV series, movies, cartoons … and even comics.
“Look at how Disney got started,” Hed says in the Wired UK article. “Steamboat Willie created Mickey Mouse, then they added more characters. You can see the same pattern today, but everything is happening much, much faster. Other brands used to build recognition over the course of decades. We’ve done it in one year.”