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What Are You Reading?

Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe

Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe

Well bust my buttons, if it isn’t time for another round of What Are You Reading, where we talk about all the comics, books and other reading matter we’re currently engrossed in. Our guest this week is High Moon co-creator and writer David Gallaher, who’s been blogging with us at Robot 6 all this past week.

David has quite a list of titles to pour over, so let’s get to it. Click on the link below to get started.

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Own a little bit of Simpsons (comic book) history

Zettwoch's Simpsons cover

Zettwoch's Simpsons cover

Hey kids, didya like that recent Simpsons Treehouse of Horror issue? You know, the one featuring folks like Kevin Huizenga, Dan Zettwoch and Jeffrey Brown? Well, now you can own a piece of it, as editor Sammy Harkham is selling off the original artwork. I blew all my spending cash at SPX last weekend, but perhaps you might have a couple extra hundred lying in your sofa somwhere. (found via Comics Comics)

SDCC ’09 | But who holds the record for the most fat Supermen in one place?

Guinness World Records was at the San Diego Comic-Con this past weekend presenting awards for various records achieved by comic books, TV shows and other activities you might associate with the con. Here’s a complete rundown of what they presented:

DC's Paul Levitz and Guinness’ Craig Glenday

DC's Paul Levitz and Guinness’ Craig Glenday

Longest Running Sitcom and Longest Running Animated TV Series – With over 443 episodes, The Simpsons is the longest running sitcom (by episode count) and longest running animated series. During its 20th season (2008-09), The Simpsons finally overtook the 435 episodes of former record holder The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952-66).

Best-selling Comic (single edition) – Spider-Man No.1, first published in August 1990, is the Best-selling Comic (single edition). With an initial print run of 2.35 million, the record-breaking edition was sold with a variety of differently colored covers and several reprints were ordered to keep up with high public demand.

Longest Continuosly Published Comic Book – The longest running comic book is Detective Comics, which has been printed continuously by DC Comics in the USA since Issue #1 in March 1937. The comic introduced the character of Batman in Issue #27 in May 1939.

Most Successful Sci-fi TV Show – Doctor Who, the longest running sci-fi television show, is now the Most Successful Sci-fi Show on Television. Based on the length of the show’s run and international sales data, the series about the adventures of the iconic Time Lord was presented with the new record at Comic-Con 2009 International.

Most Digital Effects in a TV Series – Farscape employed about 25 computer artists to create between 40 and 50 effects shot per episode. The effects team had just seven days to work on each episode, at a rate of 22 episodes per year.

Largest Gathering of Zombies – The record largest gathering of zombies was achieved by 3,894 participants in the ‘Red White and Dead Zombie Party’ in association with Night Zero on July 3, 2009 in Seattle, Washington. Ryan Reiter, Artistic Director for Freemont Outdoor Cinema Events.

Picture via The Source

SDCC ’09 | Charity auctions, panels, hookups, scalping and more

Comic-Con

Comic-Con

The 2009 San Diego Comic-Con kicks off with preview night on Wednesday, July 22 and runs through Sunday, July 26. If you are a publisher, creator, retailer or any other kind of exhibitor who would like to let folks know about any special plans you have for the show (panels, signing schedules, exclusives, debuts, etc.) drop me an email and I’ll run it here.

Organizations | The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and Things From Another World have teamed up to create a set of limited edition cards by various comic creators that will be handed out by various publishers, the CBLDF and TFAW. The original artwork for the cards will be auctioned off at the con, with proceeds going to the fund. Contributors include Mike Mignola, Phil Hester, Eric Powell, Gabriel Bá, Fábio Moon, Steve Lieber and many more.

Panels | Although the official programming schedule hasn’t been released yet, a few companies have started sharing their panels via press releases and such. Thursday at the con brings a panel on Disney animator Walt Stanchfield, who is profiled in a new book called Drawn to Life: 20 Golden Years of Disney Master Classes.

Also, FOX TV has released their schedule. They’ll have panels dedicated to the Simpsons, Family Guy, The Cleveland Show (a Family Guy spinoff), 24, Futurama and Bones. They’ll also have Joss Whedon and Eliza Dushku on hand to introduce a never before seen episode of Dollhouse. And they’ll have a panel dedicated to their new show Glee, where they’ll show another episode. You can watch the first one on Hulu; it is hilarious.

Interestingly enough, the release doesn’t mention Fringe, but there will be a panel with several members of the cast.

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Jeffrey Brown’s ‘Bad Milhouse’

Bad Milhouse

Bad Milhouse

Jeffrey Brown, one of several creators contributing to Bongo’s Bart Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror comic this year, shares some rough sketches of the first page of his story here and here. His story, “Bad Milhouse,” features Bart’s best friend in a story inspired by the TV movie Bad Ronald.

Kramers Ergot meets the Simpsons in this year’s Treehouse of Horror

©2009 Bongo Entertainment, Inc. The Simpsons © & ™Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

©2009 Bongo Entertainment, Inc. The Simpsons © & ™Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

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
$4.99
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.

Post Office debuts ‘Simpsons’ stamps

Simpsons stamps

Simpsons stamps

As I noted earlier this week, the United States Post Office unveiled five stamps featuring The Simpsons yesterday. The stamps will be available to purchase on May 7.

Related products and information on a contest can be found at the USPS’s Simpsons site.


Stamps to make fans happy on both sides of the Atlantic

Stamps designed by Dave McKean

Stamps designed by Dave McKean

Fans in the United Kingdom and the United States both have something to look forward to in the mail later this year. First, the Royal Mail will introduce new stamps (pictured above) designed by Dave McKean featuring assorted mythical beasts. In addition, if you buy a presentation pack, the stamps will include a short story by Neil Gaiman. The stamps are due June 16.

And for those of us on this side of the ocean … later this week the United States Post office will unveil the designs for stamps featuring the five main Simpsons characters — Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie. No word on when the stamps will actually hit stores, but I’m sure they’ll announce that on April 9 as well.

2009 Joe Shuster Award nominees announced

The nominees for the 2009 Joe Shuster Awards, which honor Canadian comics creators, were announced today. The five-year-old awards program is named after Joe Shuster, co-creator of Superman. The list of nominees this year includes Darwyn Cooke, J. Torres, Karl Kerschl, Dave Sim, Kathryn & Stuart Immonen, Faith Erin Hicks and Seth, among many others.

Check out the full list of nominees in the press release after the jump.

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