Sunday, April 29, 2007

Canadian cartoonist Steve Mielczarek starts ComicsDC-inspired blog

A month or so ago, Canadian cartoonist Steve Mielczarek sent a cartoon to me, in response to a previous post.

Today, he wrote again, "I just want to say thanks for posting my cartoon and letter on your site a while back. And, Thanks to you, I realized that I too, could set up a blog. Of my own cartoons. If you'd like, take a look:

Best of luck, Steve!

Saturday, April 28, 2007

April 28 Nick Bertozzi at Big Planet Bethesda UPDATED

Nick Bertozzi signed his two new books Houdini and The Salon, as well as the older Boswash and The Masochist at Big Planet today. A few non-comics readers stopped in and bought The Salon, which I think is one of the best graphic novels of the year. Nick was very pleasant and it was a joy to talk with him. His 6-year old daughter was there, and was helpful in pointing out when your drawing was dry and you could take your book. ;^) Nick talked a little about his books - showing me the page of The Salon that's gotten Gordon Lee in trouble in Georgia (it shows Picasso's penis swinging as he jumps across his studio) and saying that he never wants to draw another bowler hat after Houdini's crowd scenes.

Nick's got an interesting question he asks when he meets you - I won't give it away except to note that answers were INXS / PIL; Clapton or Jason and the Scorchers; and The Who opening for Herman's Hermits. His next project, which should be excellent, is a graphic novel on Lennie Bruce with Harvey Pekar.

This was a good signing - Nick says he'll be at SPX in the fall - if you didn't make this, go to that. And Tom Spurgeon's got a new interview up.

Morin's Herblock award, Bryan Talbot, French & American Cartoons, Nick Bertozzi pictures

I'm behind on transcribing my notes, so I've loaded pictures at Flickr. These are of Jim Morin accepting the Herblock award; Bryan Talbot signing at Big Planet; KAL, Nick Galifiankas, Ted Rall and Jeff Danziger speaking at Alliance Francaise; and Nick Bertozzi signing at Big Planet. There's also other shots I took of various comics and cartoon events over the past year. These are Creative Commons copyright - feel free to use them, just credit me and let me know please.

Eventually I'll move them over here with appropriate commentary.

May 5: Free Comic Book Day

Next Saturday, the day after Spider-Man 3 opens, will be the 6th annual Free Comic Book Day. Simply present yourself at a comic book store and pick up the freebies. I know Big Planet is participating. Anyone else in the area?

Friday, April 27, 2007

Pakistan needs comic strips like the Washington Post has

"POSTCARD USA: Cartoon-time USA" by Khalid Hasan in the Pakistan Daily Times (April 22 2007) is actually a fairly touching article in which he runs through the Sunday Post's comic section and concludes, "It is time we had a national comic strip running in all Pakistani newspapers."

Tom the Dancing Bug on VA Tech tragedy in Post

In the back pages of the Post's Weekend section, Reuben Bolling did a fairly tasteful cartoon on the killings at VA Tech. It's not online yet, but should eventually appear here.

Breathed and Lust in the new Onion

Thurday's Onion had a couple of articles on comics.
"Random Rules: Berkeley Breathed" by Tasha Robinson is an interview about his taste in music. The online version is about twice as long as the print one.

The second article is a review by Keith Phipps of the 1950s graphic (in both senses) novel "It Rhymes With Lust" by Arnold Drake, Leslie Waller, and Matt Baker just reissued by Dark Horse, in the same spring when both writers Drake and Waller died.

DC Anime Club movie showing

The Post's Weekend section says the Anime Club will be meeting at the Martin Luther King library at 1 pm on Saturday in room A9 to screen Elfenlied, Azumanga Daioh and (I love this) BYO anime. They also list Wednesday at 6 pm. Phone is 202-262-2083.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Comic-making workshop in D.C. area

Matt Dembicki's written in to say,

I'm the founder and one of the organizers of the D.C. Conspiracy (the comics-creating group - Mike). In conjunction with promoting our graphic novel "Mr. Big," my wife, Carol, and I will be holding several local creating comics workshops this summer. Here's a list of what's lined up so far (and they're all free to the public):

May 9, Free Comic Book Day, Big Planet Comics, Vienna, Va., noon-2 p.m. (I'll also have a free mini-comic made especially for FCBD by the D.C. Conspiracy!)

June 25, Chantilly Regional Library, Chantilly, Va., 7

June 28, George Mason Regional Library, Annandale,
Va., 7 p.m.

July 10, Dolley Madison Library, McLean, Va., 4 p.m.

July 17, Pohick Regional Library, Burke, Va., 7 p.m.

July 24, Great Falls Library, Great Falls, Va., 7 p.m.

July 25, Patrick Henry Library, Vienna, Va., 7 p.m.

July 30, Reston Regional Library, Reston, Va., 7 p.m.

July 31, Centreville Regional Library, Centreville, Va., 7 p.m.

August 2, John Marshall Library, Alexandria, Va., 7 p.m.

August 6, Kings Park Library, Burke, Va., 7 p.m.

Matt can be reached at or

April 28 - Disney illustrator in Reston

Toby Bluth will be at ArtInsights animation art and framing shop in Reston (11921 Freedom Dr.; 703-478-0778) on Saturday from 2-7. According to the Post, he's illustrated children's books and will be displaying the art.

Bertozzi article in today's Express; benefit in NYC

Scott Rosenberg interviewed Nick Bertozzi who will be at Big Planet Bethesda on Saturday from 2-4 pm. You can see the article as a pdf at the website, scroll down past the main paper to page E15. UPDATE - Scott's posted it online so you can see the article on the main page now with added information about the CBLDF.

The Salon was an excellent book, but unfortunately has led to a ridiculous prosecution of a comic book store owner in Georgia. There's a benefit in New York tonight for him:

This Thursday, April 26, The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is proud to present a benefit book launch party for Nick Bertozzi's controversial graphic novel THE SALON. Bertozzi's graphic novel about the birth of Cubism is the subject of the Fund's current casework. The launch party will be at The Village Pourhouse at 64 3rd Avenue in Manhattan, and will feature an open bar & appetizer reception from 7 - 8 PM, live music by The Cangelosi Cards all night, and a free signed Picasso print by Bertozzi for all attendees.

Since 2005, The Fund has been defending Georgia retailer Gordon Lee for distributing a preview of THE SALON which depicted Picasso in the nude. To date the case has cost upwards of $80,000, with the Fund successfully knocking out 5 of the 7 charges originally brought against Mr. Lee. A trial is expected in early June where the Fund's legal team will work to defeat the two remaining counts.

The Salon benefit launch party is presented to benefit the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund in cooperation with JahFurry and St. Martins Press. The Village Pourhouse is located at 64 Third Avenue at 11th Street in Manhattan. The party is this Thursday, April 26 from 7 PM to Midnight. For more information, please contact Charles Brownstein at 212.679.7151. For further details, please see:

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

French and American Politics... In Cartoons!

This event was extremely well attended and overflowed the Alliance Francaise's living room (ok, it was the living room before the townhouse was converted). In addition to KAL, Nick Galifianakis, Ted Rall and Jeff Danziger (in seating order), Cameroon cartoonist Issa Nyaphaga was there. The moderator Claude Porsella, Correspondent for Radio France Internationale,* had some good questions, and each cartoonist took a shot at drawing a cartoon relevant to the French election. I'll try to read my notes and post something more extensive with pictures possibly in a couple of nights.

*corrected from earlier version.

Dykes to Watch Out For publishing schedule changes

I'd been blaming the Blade's incompetent strip editing (which is still a problem - why are we getting Paige Braddock's Jane's World strips from 4 years ago?)

Anyway Alison Bechdel's announced a new book contract and a thus a reduced Dykes strip schedule. Read the whole post on her blog, but here's the relevant bits:

Man. I don’t even know where to start. I’ve been working on a post about the blog for days, and it’s about 12 pages long and completely disjointed. But before I get to that, I have to make an announcement. I’ve made the very difficult decision to temporarily cut back to one new Dykes to Watch Out For episode every four weeks, instead of every two weeks. I’ll be interspersing these new strips here and in the newspapers with “archive” strips from 1987, 20 years ago. ...

...The reason I’m doing this is that I have to crank out a new memoir by 2009. I just signed a contract for it. (MLK, thank you for raising the very interesting question a while ago about the difference between writing without a contract, and with one. I’ll get to that in a minute.) As many of you know, Fun Home took me seven years to complete. And most of those were spent quietly and reclusively at home, not galavanting around the country (and beyond) yammering about myself to all and sundry, like I’ve been doing for the past year.

Dykes is still one of the best soap opera strips running and I'm sorry to get less of it, but Fun Home was one of my favorite graphic novels last year.

Exhibition Opening: Cities are for People: The Visual Voice of John Wiebenson- 13 Years of Political Cartoons

Presumably at the University of Maryland... more news when I get it.

Exhibition Opening: Cities are for People: The Visual Voice of John Wiebenson- 13 Years of Political Cartoons
ID: 9984

When: Tuesday, April 03, 2007 6:00 PM - Wednesday, May 09, 2007 4:00 PM
Where: Architecture : Kibel Gallery
Event Type(s): Art Exhibition

Washington-based architect and educator, John Wiebenson, expressed his belief in people and social activism through his design work but also through his cartoons. Throughout the 1970s and early 1980s, Archihorse appeared regularly in the DC Gazette, an alternative and progressive newspaper edited by Sam Smith.

Some of the many issues that Archihorse tackled included urban disinvestment, historic preservation, public transportation, and redevelopment insensitive to existing neighborhoods. The means were humorous and the goal was simple - a just, equitable, diverse, active, historic, imaginative and well-designed city where citizens' voices were heard and government was responsive.

For more information, contact:
Ronit Eisenbach
+1 301 405 6298

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Danish Islam cartoon editor to speak in DC again

Editor and Publisher, in a story most likely by David Astor, is reporting that Flemming Rose will speak at the editorial cartoonists' AAEC gathering in DC over the July 4th holiday weekend. Rose is known (or notorious) for publishing those pesky cartoons considered by some to be disrespectful of Islam. He's previously spoken in DC at Georgetown University.

Brad Meltzer novel

Brad Meltzer, a recovering Big Planet customer* and real sweetheart of a best-selling author, should be known to us as the writer of DC's "Identity Crisis" and the new "Justice League of America." Oddly enough he also dabbles in prose and has sent out the following info (I hear this book has an ad for the JLA in the back of it):

Is there a new book out? I wish -- but I'm way too slow for that (darn research and character development). But today, The Book of Fate comes out in paperback (Smaller! Cheaper! Teenier font!) and if I didn't tell my family and friends about it, then my Uncle Richie would give me major headache since he still refuses to pay full price for the hardback. No joke. And I even put his name in this one.

So...if you missed the hardback, or want to buy someone a really cheap (but thoughtful and generous) present, boy, is this one for you.

It's got a main character that may be my favorite I've ever written, former Presidents, and Freemasons.

To buy it, here's the link:

And if you want to see the new covers on all the other books (with lots of little men looking mysterious as they run nowhere in particular), they're here:

And of course, thanks again -- especially those who were so amazing and bought the hardback those first days (not you, Uncle Rich). That means more than I can ever possibly express.

*he moved to Florida

Postcards: True Stories That Never Happened interviews

DC-area comics writer Jason Rodriguez has interviewed some of the creators in his new Postcards book over the past week:



"POSTCARDS" PART 2: ANDE PARKS, April 20, 2007 .

"POSTCARDS" PART 1: RICK SPEARS & ROB G, April 19, 2007.

and was interviewed himself at MAIL CALL: JASON RODRIGUEZ TALKS POSTCARDS by Chris Arrant, April 18, 2007.

Images of Irish-American Immigrants Featured in Swann Fellow’s Talk on May 15

Martha Kennedy of the Library of Congress reports: Images of Irish-American Immigrants Featured in Swann Fellow’s Talk on May 15

Swann Foundation Fellow Sharrona Pearl will discuss depictions of Irish-American immigrants in mid-19th century prints and explore how such imagery conveyed ambiguous perceptions about this group, in a lecture at the Library of Congress on May 15.

Pearl will present the lecture titled "Black and White: Drawing the Irish-American Immigrant in Shades of Grey,” at noon on Tuesday May 15, 2007, in the West Dining Room on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, DC.

Pearl’s illustrated presentation is based on research conducted at the Library of Congress during her fellowship awarded by the Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon. The Library administers the foundation. The lecture, sponsored by the foundation and the Library’s Prints and Photographs Division, is free and open to the public; no reservations are required.

Irish-Americans at mid-19th century held rights of citizenship and voting and quickly became the most important political force on the east coast. Pearl will discuss the ambiguity of graphic art that pictures members of this immigrant group. Many prints show politicians and others seeking support from the Irish, even as the imagery also suggests that they were racially and religiously different. Pearl will argue that close examination of selected prints from the 1830s through the 1860s demonstrates that Irishness was depicted more noticeably through linguistic and external symbols such as clothing and weaponry, rather than through distinct racial and facial markers. Mindful of links between race and class in the 19th century, Pearl observes that the poor Irish were often depicted as more strongly distinct than were their more wealthy counterparts. Although often compared with African-Americans, Irish-Americans, unlike their compatriots, had social mobility and were not always represented with common identifying features. The Irish, despite many historiographical claims to the contrary, were not black. Rather, Pearl will show that they were often drawn in literal and metaphorical shades of grey.

Pearl completed a Ph.D. in the History of Science at Harvard University in November, 2005. Strongly interdisciplinary, her doctoral research focused on physiognomy in nineteenth century Britain. She is currently working on her book manuscript, which is tentatively titled, “Facing the Victorians: Physiognomy in Nineteenth Century Britain,” under contract with Harvard University Press. Pearl has published articles on a number of related topics, including her new research on science and theater. She is a lecturer on the Committee on Degrees in History and Literature at Harvard University, which is a three year post-doctoral fellowship.

This presentation is part of the Swann Foundation’s continuing activities to support the study, interpretation, preservation and appreciation of original works of humorous and satiric art by graphic artists from around the world. The Swann Foundation’s advisory board is composed of scholars, collectors, cartoonists and Library of Congress staff members. The foundation customarily awards one fellowship annually (with a stipend of $15,000) to assist scholarly research and writing projects in the field of caricature and cartoon. Applications for the academic year 2007-2008 were due on Feb.15, 2007. More information about the fellowship is available through the Swann Foundation’s Web site: or by e-mailing

Local award for Jules Feiffer

Alan Fern, former director of the National Portrait Gallery, says "Monday, 30 April, Jules Feiffer will be at the Cosmos Club to receive the McGovern Award from the Cosmos Club Foundation." That's an impressive set of recipients of the award.

April 25: French and American Politics... in Cartoons! UPDATED

My buddy Rick Banning pointed this out in the new City Paper. The ad reads "Panel discussion featuring cartoonists Jeff Danziger, Ted Rall, KAL and Nick Galifianakis and TF1 correspondent Guillaume Debre. Alliance Francaise de Washington, 2141 Wyoming Ave, NW, Wednesday, 4/25 at 6:30 pm. $12. (202) 234-7911." It's $12 if you sign up today and tomorrow by phone or online. If you show up and buy a ticket for the thing, they charge you an extra $2.

This should be good. I've seen Danziger, Rall and Kal before and they're all entertaining speakers. I think I'll cough up the dough to go.

Monday, April 23, 2007

new Mt. Pleasant book - completely off topic

Lisa Cherkasky is a friend of mine who fluffs food for photos in the Post's food section, and her sister has a new book on DC coming out. Here's the info from Mara Cherkasky:

At long last my book on Mount Pleasant DC is out! It will go on sale April 30 in the big chain stores, on Amazon, and in some of the local businesses as well, including Pfeiffer's Hardware, at 3219 Mount Pleasant Street, NW (202-462-1431). You will also be able to purchase it directly from me (for the same price as everywhere else- $20 plus tax).

Pfeiffer's is hosting a book signing Saturday, May 5, from 10:30 am to 1 pm, so please come out if you can. This is the same day the Mount Pleasant farmers' market opens at Lamont Park across from the hardware store, so the mood will be festive.

Mara, iirc, wrote the neighborhood historical signs that have popped up.

April 28 Nick Bertozzi at Big Planet Bethesda UPDATED

From 2-4 pm. I read The Salon, his new book on Picasso, Braque and ghosts last night and enjoyed it a lot. Here's a brief interview by former Big Planet employee Ian Sattler.

UPDATED - here's an excellent review by The Comics Journal's Dirk Deppey.

I read Houdini by Lutes and Bertozzi today - enjoyable, but obviously and unnecessarily aimed at younger children, including Glen David Gold's introduction.

Secret DC comics creator's group

Well, it was a secret to me anyway, but Jason Rodriguez pointed out there's an informal group of DC comics creators, DC Conspiracy.

He also linked to this Fairfax Times article on Mr. Big the turtle.

Dagwood's coming to DC

The Washington Business Journal is reporting that the rights to open either 106 or 63* Dagwood's Sandwich Shoppes in the DC area. Hooray! More collectible ephemera!

*see if you can figure it out

Sunday, April 22, 2007

One of my favorite cartoonists was in Sunday's Post Magazine...

...although I'm pretty sure that Guy Billout doesn't even consider himself a cartoonist. He began as a children's book illustrator as far as I know and now does illustration work. He did the illustration for "Hearts and Bones" in the centerfold of the magazine today. The drawing's not online, but the article is about a couple who bought an old house to renovate, only to find out that the man has a heart condition. Billout's drawing is of a building with smoke rising from it and the smoke forms a dividing line in the trees on the horizon. Check out his website to see more images, many of which were published in the Atlantic before their recent makeover. He also did work in the late 1990s for Reader's Digest which is why you can find me flipping through them at times.

Jason Rodriguez's new book

Through circumstances not ready to be detailed here, I've found that Jason Rodriguez is a DC-area comics creator. Read "MAIL CALL: JASON RODRIGUEZ TALKS POSTCARDS" by Chris Arrant in Newsrama (April 18, 2007) for details on his latest project.

Also, after visiting Jason's website earlier in the week, I went to the link to Rick Geary's website and bought all the postcards he offers. I'd recommend that you do the same. Some are political cartoons and I'll try to do a longer post on them later in the week.

Friday, April 20, 2007

TwoMorrows Free Comic Book Day offer

The stores around DC are pretty good about participating, but in case anyone wants to be sure, here's their press release:

If your can't get COMICS 101 (our Free Comic Book Day publication) at your local comics shop, you can order one now at! We're making copies available for order now, but we will be charging enough to cover our printing and postage costs. So if you can get yours locally, you'll save some cash (and get a chance to see all the great offerings your local retailer has!). But for those who can't get one, order now while they last!NOTE: Place your order now, but we will NOT be mailing copies until the week after Free Comic Book Day (May 5). And don't delay; after May 5, if any copies remain, we will be selling them at a higher price. Here's a direct link!

Best regards,John Morrow
TwoMorrows Publishing10407 Bedfordtown
Dr.Raleigh, NC 27614919-449-0344fax 919-449-0327

April 21: Warren Craghead speaks at exhibit in Bethesda

I got a comment from Mr. Craghead that he'd be doing an artist's talk at 1 pm at his exhibit, HOW TO BE EVERYWHERE at the Gallery Neptune, 4901 Cordell Ave, Bethesda, Maryland, April 6 - 28, 2007.

I'm going to try to make this.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

May 19: Anime Pavilion's Anime Festival

This one just came in the email - I know nothing more about it.

CONTACT: (703) 534-1544
Anime Pavilion's Anime Festival
A Night of Anime Fun.

Anime Pavilion Presents: Anime Festival on Saturday May 19,2007 at 6pm located at Anime Pavilion 115 Hillwood Avenue, Suite 110 Falls Church, VA 22046.
Anime Festival will consist of screenings of Anime (Japanese Animation) cosplay (the Japanese term for costume play), dressing up in homemade costumes as their favorite Japanese animated characters. There will also be video game sessions such as Dance Dance Revolution (dancing video game) for all Anime video game fans.
This program is free and open to the public. For more information please visit AnimePavilions Website at or call (703) 534-1544.

April 21: Smithsonian Anime seminar REPOST

Japanese Art Forms Manga and Anime Topic of Smithsonian Event; Experts Discuss the Development, Creative Process and Cultural Impact

The Smithsonian Associates will feature the Japanese pop culture phenomena of manga (comics and printed cartoons) and anime in an all-day seminar on Saturday, April 21, 10 a.m. –5 p.m. as part of its cultural series “Japan WOW!” (March 31—June 9). The program “Manga to Anime: From Astro Boy to Spirited Away” will be held in the Meyer Auditorium at the Freer Gallery of Art (12th and Independence Avenue SW, DC, 20013). Tickets are $45 general admission, $30 for members, and $15 for students 18 years and under. For tickets and information, call (202) 357-3030 or visit

Manga and anime are now two of Japan’s biggest cultural exports—as evidenced by the popularity and record-breaking sales associated with the 2001 animated movie “Spirited Away.” In this seminar leading experts and industry veterans will explore the development of these interconnected art forms, commenting on the creative process, styles, characters and the effect these pop cultural creations have on United States markets and trends.

Leading the discussion on manga is Michael Uslan, “Batman” series producer and creative chief officer and producer of Comic Book Movies LLC. He is joined by artists/ directors Ryuhei Kitamura, Mitsuhisa Ishikawa, Kazuhiko Kato and Lotus representative Hiroshi Koizumi. Presenters Osamu Tezuka (creator of “Astro Boy”), Leiji Matsumoto and Masashi Kishimoto (creator of “Naruto”), use the works of Shotaro Ishinomori, as they look into manga’s history, the interaction of manga and modern culture, as well as its impact on the worlds of publishing, animation, and live action cinema with these talented artists of today’s manga creations.

In the afternoon, Dr. Susan Napier, professor of Japanese literature and culture at Tufts University, illuminates the world of anime. Considering it as a global cultural phenomenon, Napier expounds on the stories, characters and symbolism that define it.
The program “Manga to Anime: From Astro Boy to Spirited Away” is supported by the DC Anime Club. The Japan WOW! series is made possible by Amway Japan LTD, The Boeing Company, The Hay-Adams, Kikkoman, Mitsubishi International Corporation, Toyota and Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (METRO); with additional support by All Nippon Airways (ANA), EYA, Embassy of Japan, Japan Information and Cultural Center, Japan Commerce Association of Washington, D.C., Japan Foundation New York, the Japan National Tourist Organization New York, Comic Book Movies, LLC, Lotus, Inc. and the Palomar Hotel.

[Tezuka's dead, so he's probably not a presenter].

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Illuminated! minicomic

Students from Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, Maryland have produced this minicomic and are selling it at Big Planet Comics in Bethesda. I bought one for myself and one for Michigan State University's Comic Art collection today.

Big Planet's view of online versus physical bookstores

Greg Bennet's quoted in this article from the Montgomery County Gazette (Wednesday, April 18, 2007) - "Is this ‘The End’ for local booksellers? Fierce competition forces independent bookstores to turn their last page" by Audrey Dutton.

Greg's optimistic, saying "Our business model has evolved. Now it’s based on graphic novels... We don’t have the kind of collectors coming to us who used to come to us, because everybody knows they can go to the ‘net." Greg notes that Big Planet has turned to graphic novels as the majority of its business and is making more money selling them and "That bodes much better for the long-term health of the business.”

April 19-20: Bill Griffith in Baltimore

The Baltimore City Paper (4/18/2007) has an interview with Bill Griffith by Christopher Skokna - "Things Change: Zippy the Pinhead Creator Bill Griffith Isn't Too Worried About the Sunset of the Comic Strip."

According to the story, Griffith will be in town for 2 events:
"Up From the Underground With Zippy: 38 Years and Still Climbing," a free slide lecture at Johns Hopkins University's Mattin Center April 19 at 5:30 p.m.
He signs books at Atomic Books on April 20 from 6 to 7 p.m. For more information visit

International Journal of Comic Art's John Lent interview

As it says over there on the right, I work on the International Journal of Comic Art, specifically editing exhibit and media reviews. If you see an exhibit or website you'd like to review, feel free to contact me. In the meantime, here's a link to an interview with editor in chief / publisher / chief cook & bottlewasher John Lent. It's a late 2006 one by Steve Black for the College of Saint Rose's Periodical Radio and covers "Comic art as a subject of scholarly research, importance of international perspective, insights on the peer review process."

The Reaper! Stalin cartoons by Benton F. Thompson

This has nothing to do with DC, except I bought it at a book sale in Arlington. I don't know what it is, nor whom Thompson was, and a quick check on the internet hasn't revealed anything yet. The whole booklet is 16 pages long - every other page is blank and I didn't copy it. Anyone have any information or guesses? One way or another, I thought it was pretty neat and probably rare enough to share.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Doonesbury bashed, including positioning in Post

Conservative blogger Tim Graham takes a shot at Doonesbury in "Doonesbury Comic Strip Boasts 'No Divorces or Infidelities' For Clinton, Obama, Edwards" and includes the brutal critique, "Oh, and The Washington Post is especially cruel to Doonesbury, putting it on the front page of the comics section right above "Opus." Trudeau isn't even attempting to be funny most of the time, since it gets in the way of the diatribes, and Opus man Berkeley Breathed is routinely funny, even when he mocks conservatives."

Warren Craghead exhibit in Bethesda

Warren Craghead, the indy cartoonist, has an exhibit, HOW TO BE EVERYWHERE at the Gallery Neptune, 4901 Cordell Ave, Bethesda, Maryland, April 6 - 28. 2007. All the work, and a 100-page limited-edition book of drawings published at the same time, is based on the poetry of Guillaume Apollinaire.

Brant Parker, longtime Virginian cartoonist, has died too

The Washington Post and Los Angeles Times are reporting that Brant Parker, Johnny Hart's collaborator on 'The Wizard of Id' has died as well. Arlington cartoonist Richard Thompson sent me the heads-up, saying "Brant P was a local guy for a long time, his studio was above a saddlery on Lee Highway out in Fairfax. He was the first cartoonist I ever really talked to; I interviewed him for my high school paper in 1975. A very droll, nice man."

Unfortunately Jeff Parker's cartoon in this appreciation of Hart now makes sense to me. Brant Parker's tribute is here.

In their day, Parker and Hart's strips 'B.C.,' 'The Wizard of Id,' and 'Crock' ruled the comics page. Raise a glass to them.

April 17: Ben Katchor at DCJCC

In his "picture stories," Ben Katchor turns the American city into a wonderland of tin ceilings, illuminated storefronts, and unusual enterprises: the Senseless Elaboration Parlor, the Sublime Vision Center, the Mortal Coil Mattress Store. The first cartoonist to win a MacArthur "genius grant," Katchor is the author of The Jew of New York, Julius Knipl, Real Estate Photographer, and The Cardboard Valise. He has also collaborated on several works of musical theater, including The Carbon Copy
Building, The Rosenbach Company, and The Slugbearers of Kayrol Island. His comic strips have appeared in The New Yorker, The Forward, Metropolis, and other newspapers and magazines. In his public appearances, Katchor elevates the slide show to a form of performance art.

Tuesday, April 17th
Washington DCJCC
Tickets: $8/$6 (students/JCC members/under 25)
Reserve at or call 1-888-219-5222

Monday, April 16, 2007

Saul Steinberg: Illuminations special Smithsonian-only content

Boy, that cartoon has a whole new meaning these days, doesn't it?

In 1967, Saul Steinberg became the Smithsonian's first and last artist-in-residence. While in DC, he took some Smithsonian stationary and make these cartoons, influenced by his residency on the Georgetown tea circuit. These won't be in any other versions of the show. Neat, huh? Go see the originals at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and enjoy the refurbished museum.

Non Sequiter non-compete?

Editor TOM MARQUARDT in "Comic strip changes go forward - with last-minute substitution" in the Annapolis Capital (April 15, 2007) says he was all set to add 'Non Sequiter, but ..."Then came an apology from Universal Press Syndicate, which distributes "Non Sequitur." It had to withdraw its offer - one of this area's metropolitan dailies already carries the comic strip and pays a premium price to prevent it from appearing in any competing newspaper. Newspapers can be as territorial as wolves."

So is the Post the territorial paper?

He's running 'F-Minus' by Tony Carillo (haven't read it) instead for those who don't care to click through. 'Pearls Before Swine' (generally good) and 'Pickles' (eh) were his other two choices.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Imus fingerpuppet in Richard's Poor Almanack - now with link

Your collection can continue to grow if you track down today's Post and get the Don Imus finger puppet by Richard Thompson. I suppose it'll be online eventually. I'm getting quite a little shelf of these.

Ok, it's up - make your own!

Lamar Wants Superhero Family

NBC4 featured Lamar, a young man who is looking for an adoptive family, on their Wednesday's Child program. The interview took place at Big Planet Comics.

Steinberg exhibit review in today's Examiner

Unfortunately, it's not online so if you want to read it, you'll have to find a copy of the paper.

I'll try to follow up my initial Steinberg report later today.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Through the Looking Glass: Bryan Talbot

Bryan Talbot's at Big Planet Comics in Bethesda at 6 pm tonight. In the meantime, read "Through the Looking Glass: Bryan Talbot" by Scott Rosenberg, Express April 11, 2007.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Late-Saturday night gaming at Fantom Comics

Catherine Andrews points out on the Washingtonian blog that Fantom Comics at 4500 Wisconsin Avenue is open at midnight for videogames. Notwithstanding that, this is a good store - if I hadn't been with Big Planet for 20 years, this would be my choice for a local store. They've got a darn good selection of books.

Story link courtesy of Tom Spurgeon's Comics Reporter.

Baltimorean Brian Ralph profile & Top Shelf sale

"Illustrator survives, thrives in Baltimore" by Adam Bednar, The Jeffersonian (April 10, 2007).

I didn't realize he was in Baltimore now - he's one of Top Shelf's stable, and they're having a big sale now.

Here's the sale info: Hey Comics Fans,

To celebrate Top Shelf's 10th Anniversary in publishing, and also to announce (and prepare for) our 2007-2008 publishing line, for the next ten days -- from Monday April 9th thru Wednesday April 18th -- Top Shelf is having its biggest web sale ever. When you visit the site, you'll find over 125 graphic novels and comics on sale, with fifty titles marked down to just $3 (!), twenty-five titles marked down to just $1 (!), and a slew of other key titles just slashed! All we ask is that you hit a $30 minimum on sale and/or non-sale items (before shipping). It's a great opportunity to
load up on all those graphic novels you've wanted to try, but just never got around to picking up. Get 'em while supplies last!

To go directly to the list of items on sale, just click here:

But here are a few sample sale items:
-- $3 Books: The Mirror of Love, The King, Tricked, Bighead, and more!
-- $1 Books: The Surrogates #1 and more!
-- Slashed Prices: Lost Girls, From Hell, Blankets, Owly Plush, and more!

**We now accept PayPal (as well as Visa, MasterCard, Amex, and Discover).
All secure.**

Please note that this sale is GOOD for "direct market" retailers as well, and comic book shops will get their wholesale discount on top of these sale prices. Certain minimums apply, so retailers please email us for details.

Weingarten on Johnny Hart's death

Gene Weingarten, as a noted comics aficionado was asked about Hart's death during his "Post Magazine: Too Busy to Stop and Hear the Music" (, April 9, 2007; 1:00 PM)

Fairfax, VA: For four months you leave us, and now you think you can just walk in here like nothing happened? At least offer us a poop joke and some words about Johnny Hart.

Gene Weingarten: I tried to write an appreciation of Johnny for today's paper, but failed. It was coming out nasty, and that was bad.

Johnny Hart was one of the greatest cartoonists who ever lived. "B.C." during the first few years of the strip was breathtakingly brilliant; really, if you're too young to remember (everyone but me is) go on ebay and buy a few of his very early collections, from before about 1963.

One of my favorites:

Peter, the smart one, declares he is going to travel across the earth dragging a forked stick in the sand, to prove that two parallel lines never meet. He starts out toward the right of the page. In the next several panels, you see him dragging that forked stick through desert and tundra and jungle, with parallel lines following him the whole way. Finally, he returns to his friends from the left of the panel, obviously having completely circumnavigated the globe. They all look down. The two forks of the stick have been abraded down into a single nub. The parallel lines have met.

Another one: The cavement discover this lumpy creature and decide they have to name it. Peter says: "Well, let's name it for its most obvious characteristic. What is it?" And Thor answers: "It eats ants." So they decide to name it an "eatanter."

Another one: They decide to name that muscle in the chest that pumps blood. Peter decides to call it a "Hart." And B.C. yells at him: "Bootlicker!"

Hart was a genius. Then he got weird and scared, and it made him selfish and intolerant and preachy. I hope he's in heaven, because it was REALLY important to him to get there. It warped his priorities.

Steinberg exhibit reviewed in Monday's Post

I missed these two articles in my post last night. I still have a little more to say on the exhibit, and I'll get it, and more relevantly a bunch of pictures, up someday.
"Saul Steinberg: Brilliance in the Common Touch" by Paul Richard, Special to The Washington Post, Monday, April 9, 2007; C01

"21st Century Consort: Steinberg's Wit as Music" by Stephen Brookes, Washington Post Monday, April 9, 2007; C05

Monday, April 09, 2007

April 11: Bryan Talbot at Big Planet Comics in Bethesda

Bryan Talbot's signing his new book, Alice in Sunderland at Big Planet Comics on Wednesday at 6 pm. In the meantime, you can read this interview with him by Swamp Thing artist Steve Bissette.


March 28, 2007

Public contact: Martha Kennedy (202) 707-9115


Swann Foundation Fellow Hope Saska will explore the connection between the popular graphic satire of William Hogarth, whose art presented amusing yet cautionary tales of human behavior, and the staging of theatrical productions in the 18th century, in a lecture at the Library of Congress on April 10.

Saska will present the lecture, titled “Of Attitude and Action: William Hogarth and the Art of Gesture,” at noon on Tuesday, April 10, in Dining Room A on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C.

Saska’s illustrated presentation is based on research conducted at the Library of Congress during her fellowship awarded by the Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon. The Library administers the Swann Foundation. The lecture, sponsored by the foundation and the Library’s Prints and Photographs Division, is free and open to the public; no reservations are required.

Hogarth (1697-1764), the versatile English painter and satirist often called “the father of English caricature,” became well known for his paintings of “modern moral subjects,” also published as print series. At a time when actors were urged to study the fine arts  particularly paintings of historical subjects and ancient sculpture  for samples of gesture and expression to enliven the characters they portrayed on stage, Hogarth turned to theatrical metaphor to describe his two-dimensional “performances” on canvas and the engraved page.

In her lecture, Saska will argue that the practices in staging a theatrical production are analogous to the artistic process of creating two-dimensional scenes in visual art. As such, the motions the artist makes with his hand and arm to draw on the page or to inscribe a copper plate are synonymous with the gestures a performer makes in front of an audience.

Investigating Hogarth’s analogy between theatrical performance and art making, Saska’s lecture will focus on key passages of Hogarth’s 1753 treatise, “The Analysis of Beauty,” and on his engravings, especially the second illustrative plate to the text, often referred to as “The Country Dance.” She will argue that Hogarth’s theatric metaphor allowed artists, especially those working with graphic media, to envision their processes of art-making as a new category of performance.

Saska is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of History of Art and Architecture at Brown University, where she also completed her master’s degree in the field. Her dissertation, titled “Staging the Page: Graphic Satire in Eighteenth Century England,” examines shared aspects of theatrical performance and graphic satire and caricature in 18th century London.

In addition to being one of three Swann Fellows for 2006-2007, Saska is a curatorial assistant at the David Winton Bell Gallery in the List Art Center of Brown University.

This presentation is part of the Swann Foundation’s continuing activities to support the study, interpretation, preservation and appreciation of original works of humorous and satiric art by graphic artists from around the world. The foundation customarily awards one fellowship annually (with a stipend of $15,000) to assist scholarly research and writing projects in the field of caricature and cartoon. More information about the fellowship is available through the Swann Foundation’s Web site: or by e-mailing

# # #

ISSN: 0731-3527

Quick hits from today's Post

Zippy is another tribute strip to comics editor Jay Kennedy, like Mallard Filmore was a few days ago.

Johnny Hart's obituary is unique to the Post: "'B.C.' and 'Wizard of Id' Cartoonist Johnny Hart, 76" by Adam Bernstein, Washington Post Staff Writer, Monday, April 9, 2007; B05;

and the paper's notice that Iranian's may not like 300: "Iranian Community Offended by Film's Take on Ancient Battle" by Pamela Constable, Washington Post Staff Writer, Monday, April 9, 2007; B01

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Prickly City 'get-well' strip for Mrs. Edwards

Scott Stantis, whose conservative strip Prickly City runs in the Post, did a touching "feel better" Saturday strip for Presidential candidate John Edward's wife, whose cancer has recently returned.

April 19: Zippy's Bill Griffith speaks in Baltimore

Dave Astor reports that Bill Griffith will be speaking at Johns Hopkins. A google search will probably reveal the fine details.

Friday, April 06, 2007

April 15: Capital Associates comic convention

Thanks to Randy T for the tip.

10-3 at the Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Department, $3 entry

Venue info:
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Department
2148 Gallows Road
Dunn Loring, VA 22027
Tel: 1-703-893-1340

The Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Department is only about a five minute drive (1.5 miles) from the Tysons DoubleTree Hotel.

Directions through Mapquest

Take I-495 (DC/Capital Beltway),
to Exit 47A (Rt 7 West)
Go ½ mile, Left on Gallows Rd
1 mile to 2148 Gallows Rd

Thursday, April 05, 2007

'INTERPLANETARY JOURNAL OF COMIC ART: A Festschrift in Honor of John Lent' is now available.

April 5, 2007 – INTERPLANETARY JOURNAL OF COMIC ART: A Festschrift in Honor of John Lent is now available.

Editor's note - The first issue of the new InterPlanetary Journal of Comic Art (or IPJOCA as we call it around the virtual office) is now available. We are proud to invite you to the 43rd indispensable academic organ published by JOHN LENT MULTIMEDIA ENTERPRISES. All are personally hand-edited by our founder and publisher JOHN LENT, and we remind you that any suggestions of forced labor or involuntary servitude were completely dismissed in Temple University grad students v. JOHN LENT FAMILY CONGLOMERATE. This issue is slightly late, and we apologize for that. Editor JOHN LENT was traveling widely with stops on Pluto, Venus, Charon, Deimos and Phobos, Antarctica, Cyprus, Monte Carlo and the French Riviera, interviewing aging cartoonists and presenting learned discourses on the history of comic art. LENT's presentation on Pluto, "Which came first? The planet or the dog?" was particularly well-received and will appear in a future issue of IPJOCA. IPJOCA is a proud successor to the Colonial Journal of Comic Art, the Union Journal of Comic Art, the Confederate Journal of Comic Art, and the Imperial Journal of Comic Art, as well as the continuing flagship International Journal of Comic Art.

Actually, IPJOCA is a work of satire and parody, published on the occasion of John's seventieth birthday in 2006, give or take a few months. Since 1960, John has published, taught, and lectured widely on comic art, and since 1999 has been the publisher and editor-in-chief of the academic International Journal of Comic Art. In March of this year, John served on the Pulitzer Prize Nominating Juries in Journalism. John has published over 70 books and 800 articles on comic art, mass communication and Asian studies.

John's colleagues in the comic world have come together to create a tribute book, and to present it to him on April 6th at the Popular Culture Association meeting in Boston. The fully-illustrated book features a front cover by cartoonist Nick Thorkelson, and a back cover by Ralph Steadman as well as 100 pages of witty articles.

To order your copy for $10, go to; to subscribe to the International Journal of Comic Art, go to
and follow the instructions.

Table of Contents

Lent Knows – cover by Nick Thorkelson

Seqart Scholarship across the United Planets: A Brief Survey - Josty Ketew (Randy Duncan)

ICAF Times – comic strip by Roger Sabin & C. Hill

"Domus inferna Sancti Guthlaci": A Rediscovery of the twelfth-century narrative of "The Saint and the Money Pit" - K. A. Laity

ICAF Round-table: 'The Contribution of John Lent' - Rogerius Sabinis

Give It Up For Lent! – cartoons by E.C. Lockett, from ideas by Sabin & Rhode

The Exegesis of John Lent's Exegesis: A Postmodest Explalicinalysis of John Lent's Comicological Scholarship - Dr. Solomon Davidoff

Cartooning on Venus: A Problematic Field - Michael Rhode

Cheroots of the Gods: Ancient Contact with Talking Animals from the Stars - Er'q Vondan Iken (Steve Thompson)

Letters - Fusami Ogi

From the X-JOCA Family Archives - K.A. Laity

Men's Comics are from Mars, Women's Comics are from Venus: A Visual Exploration - M.O.D.O.C.A. (Barbara Postema)

A Dozen True Facts about Fredric Wertham That I Will Only Reveal For John Lent - Bart Beaty

Japanese Comic Art History's Mystery Bearded Figure - Ronarudo Suchuwaato (Ron Stewart)

Battle of the Titans: The Great National Geographic - New Yorker Cartoon Rivalry - Cathy Hunter and Michael Rhode

Out of this World (…and back again…) – autobiographical comix by Craig Fischer

Animated Yoga - Cathy Hunter

News - Fantagraphics Books Searches for Saints - Ana Merino

Obituaries - Therian Blackenshort, Theban political cartoonist - Mark C. Rogers

Faded Star Column - Rad Signal by Weary'in Ellis -Michael Rhode

Book Reviews
Leonardo da Vinci, The da Vinci Codex - Trina Robbins

Purty Pitchers All In A Row: A Review of The Interplanetary Comic Art Bibliographies of JOHN LENT Comprehensive Companion Series - Dr. Solomon Davidoff

Martianorum Mangorum Universalis Historia - Marcus Titus Pellitterius (Marco Pellitteri)

Exhibition and Media Reviews
The McDuck Collection: World's Greatest Collection of Rarities, Duckburg Museum - Michael Rhode

Disney Planet Amusement Facility, the dwarf planet formerly known as Pluto, Sol system - Gene Kannenberg, Jr.

Corrections - Leonard Rifas

Anticipatory Errata - Charles Hatfield

Comic Art Bibliography - New Resources in the Field - Michael Rhode

So Who is JOHN LENT really? - Xu Ying

Contributors' Self-Serving Biographic Blurbs

The Serious Art of Laughter – back cover by Ralph Steadman

The 'Return Ted Rall to the City Paper' campaign status

Well, they ran my letter in today's paper, but didn't put Rall back in.

Rall in This Together
Washington City Paper (April 6, 2007): 6

I'm a regular reader of the Washington City Paper, especially for your arts coverage and the comics. I'm sorry to see that you appear to have dropped Ted Rall who is one of the hardest-hitting editorial cartoonists around these days. Please reconsider this decision and bring him back - you could easily drop the two new strips, neither of which is competent nor interesting.

Mike Rhode
Arlington, VA

The bit about the two new strips was a bit harsh and I told them they could drop it when they wrote to me to confirm I was me, but obviously they decided to go with it. They did drop one of them in this week's redesign of the paper, but have kept Thingpart by Joe Sayers.

Onion arrives in DC - new strips for us

The satirical weekly newspaper The Onion arrived in their green boxes in DC today. The paper seems to run regular reviews of comic books although there weren't any in today's issue. However, we do get some more comic strips in town, some of which I haven't seen before.

*Red Meat by Max Cannon - already running in the City Paper;
*Cathy - no longer in the Post, and this version is in Spanish;
*Postage Stamp Funnies by Shannon Wheeler - small panel by the Too Much Coffee Man creator;
*The Leftersons by Colin T. Hayes - seems to be political;
*Wondermark by David Malki - clip art, but of a higher level than Rees' Get Your War On. Online at;
*The Spats by Pickering - a King Features syndicated gag strip.

Also there's a political cartoon by Kelly, credited to the Onion Syndicate.

April 6-8, Reistertown, MD: Cards, Comics, & Collectibles sale

The postcard I received says Gold & Silver 30% off, Modern Back issues 70%, Toys and statues 50%, new comics 20%, hardcovers and trades 50% and on Sunday, 80% off Modern Back issues. Tempting.

They're at 100 A Chartley Drive, Reisterstown, MD 410-526-7410

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Coming Soon: Geppi's Entertainment Museum, Gib Crockett tumblers and the Herblock award ceremony

As well as the Interplanetary Journal of Comic Art's debut, and more on Steinberg's short tenure at the Smithsonian. But they'll have to wait a day as I'm too tired to post due to the 4 am thunderstorm wakeup call.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Homeland security out of control in Baldo? UPDATED

(Originally posted on 4/2/07)

Was anyone else suprised by yesterday's strip in which Homeland Security's ICE thugs busted in and dragged off Tia Carmen? I was waiting to see what happened today, but the strip's continuing its storyline of Carmen meeting a nice gentleman. Interestingly, the artist morphed from the usual cartoony style to a more realistic style for these strips.

But back to the deportation - so did the strips run out of order? Obviously this Sunday strip isn't a humorous parody.

--UPDATE Dave Astor points out that this was an April Fool's joke. Well, they got me, as Master Ibid pointed in the comments (that I'm just seeing now after completing this post. Sigh). Here's the cartoonists' explanation from their website at (on their blog, there's a lot of comments, pro and con after their post):

Tuesday, April 3, 2007
A message from Hector & Carlos
WOW!! What an incredible reaction! There are way too many letters to post, but below are some of the more interesting responses we've gotten to Sunday's strip showing Tía Carmen being deported. Here's the deal. Our April 1 strip was an April Fool's strip (duh). Considering how much people love Tía Carmen, we thought it would be interesting to have her "deported" in dramatic fashion -- something we would never do in the strip, but something that makes a powerful statement. Admittedly, we took lots of creative license for dramatic effect (it is a comic strip after all). But that's all we did. Now, obviously, the strip hit a nerve with LOTS of people, both pro and anti immigrant. The issue itself is no joke and we don't take it lightly. It's a serious matter and we hope we got people to thinking about it. Some readers even see Carmen as a symbol of the immigration issue and demanded a T-shirt. We're happy to oblige and have set up a little store here.

Free Tia Carmen!

But we're gonna move on now. We think our point has been made -- even if it was unconventially delivered. Our familia played out their skit and we now return to our regularly scheduled programming. Bueno? Bueno!

Saul Steinberg: Illuminations quick review

This exhibit is great. Go see it at the Smithsonian American Art Museum when it opens.

Too quick? Yeah, I think so too. In the newly-renovated and renamed SAAM, three large galleries are devoted to the exhibit which was curated by Joel Smith for Vassar College. The exhibit has over 100 drawings, paintings, sketches, masks, and wooden sculpture-type objects, as well as some sketches unique to the Smithsonian. The exhibit follows Steinberg's career from the 1930s until the 1990s. As you can see below, he was capable of a variety of styles of illustration and cartooning.
"Techniques at a Party (1953) copyright the Saul Steinberg Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY.
By being arranged chronologically, Smith and SAAM curator Joann Moser let us see the development of Steinberg as a cartoonist and an artist as he moves from style to style and experiments with techniques. Steinberg, born in Romania in 1914 trained as an architect in Italy in the 1930s, but also became known as a cartoonist there. He moved to the US in 1942, and became part of the New York art scene as well as a professional cartoonist. His anti-Axis cartoons for PM magazine, although not in the show, were particularly good. During this time, he developed his graceful and playful line that one thinks of as particularly 'Steinbergian,' assuming one thinks that way. To the left, a good example is "Underground," (1946) copyright the Saul Steinberg Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY.

Steinberg also did a lot of commercial illustration and advertising work at this time, doing Christmas cards for MOMA and then Hallmark as well as magazine ads. He also became firmly part of the New Yorker stable. Eventually his 1975 "View of the World from 9th Avenue" would probably become the most widely known cover the magazine ever had. Copyright the Saul Steinberg Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY.

One thing that becomes obvious in this exhibit is Steinberg's sense of experimentation. As well as cartooning, he tried photography drawing the famous image of a woman on a bath tub and then shooting it, but also drawing directly on photographs. He did collages, and odd things, like the "Female Mask" below.
"Female Mask" (1959-1965) copyright the Saul Steinberg Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY

Out of context, the Mask series seems strange and odd. When you see them after years of his experimentation with paper and collage and lines, they make a perfect playful sense. In the 1980s, he moved into making illusions and illustrations with wood. The exhibit opens with "Library," a fake desk with fake books. I didn't really appreciate Steinberg going into this exhibit, but I left with a great fondness for his work.
Pieces like "Wyoming" (1969) above demonstrated his love of graphic imagery and whimsical sense of humor. Those of us who only knew his later work, which was sketchier and more stylized, especially the posthumous publishing the New Yorker is doing now, owe it to themselves to see the livelier artworks. Copyright the Saul Steinberg Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY.

The exhibit is on April 6-June 24th, from 11:30-7 daily. Additional events include:

April 7 - On stage with 21st Century Consort, 4 pm lecture, 5 pm concert - there's a charge.

April 15 - Curator Joel Smith at 3 pm.

May 12 - Cartoonist Matt Diffee at 3 pm (he's a good speaker.)

June 2 - Improv Troupe Now This! at 3 pm.

June 3 - New Yorker cartoon editor Bob Mankoff at 3 pm (get that Complete New Yorker Cartoons signed).

June 9 - Improv Troupe Now This! at 3 pm.

And there's a big honking catalogue for $65 that I haven't cracked yet.

Go see this show. Let me know what you think.

Express on Rick Veitch

Local comics journalist Scott Rosenberg's got an online-only article about Rich Veitch's new series Army@Love.

The April 2nd Politico on Jib-Jab

The Politico is DC's newest free paper, at least for two more days when the Onion appears. I picked up a copy today, and enjoyed Matt Wuerker's political cartoon and column-heading caricatures. "A Jab at JibJab: YouTube has stolen satirical video site's thunder" by Ryan Grim argues that JibJab isn't as funny as it used to be. I loved This Land is Your Land and some of their other works, but not the animation that preceeded that short run of brilliance, so I'd say give 'em some time.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Read today's Mallard Fillmore

A headline I never thought I'd write. However, today's Mallard Fillmore by Bruce Tinsley, run locally on page 2 of the Washington Times, is a touching tribute to Jay Kennedy, the recently deceased King Features editor.

Stagger Lee graphic novel signing report

I'm late with this report , and I apologize. The signing for the Stagger Lee graphic novel was at Big Planet Comics in Bethesda on Wednesday, April 28, 2007. It started at 2:00 pm, unfortunately after the lunchtime new comics rush. Writer Derek McCulloch (the guy with the hat) and artist Shepherd Hendrix (the guy without the hat) were making an East Coast tour on their own dime, and had appeared on XM radio the day before, and were due at Barnes and Nobles in NYC the day after, followed by a college appearance before returning to California. More details can be found on McCulloch's blog.

Things were slow when I arrived so I talked to them for a bit, and found out a few points of interest. McCulloch had the idea for the book, and showed the script to his old friend Hendrix at a party and Hendrix agreed to illustrate it. The book was about half-drawn when they pitched it to Image. They had been planning on self-publishing, but went with Image for its larger reach and abilities.

The book's been out for about a year and is a bit of a cross-over title, bringing out more music fans than superhero fans. I can attest to this because the 2nd customer had heard the radio show and drove down from Baltimore to buy 3 copies.

McCulloch wrote a full script and Hendrix drew from that. Hendrix had a couple of pieces of the original artwork with him as well as pieces from a couple of fantasy series that he's working on - some very nice stuff. The comic was a bit of a hobby for both of them until Image accepted it and then it became a job and had to be done much faster.

Well, that's all I can recall at the moment - I'll add anything I think of in later. I bought my copy and I encourage you all to give it a try. I imagine Joel's got extra signed copies at Big Planet because Image doubled the shipment he had requested. For more information, don't forget Scott Rosenberg's article - Cruel Old Stagolee Gets Graphic: The legendary tale of Stagger Lee gets a graphic treatment.