Looking at Marie Duval, Victorian cartoonist

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Who is Marie Duval? While not a household name in comics circles she’s actually one of the most important Victorian cartoonists, artist on Ally Sloper, one of the early cartoon sensations. The tale of a no good lazeabout that ran from 1857 on, it was created by Duval’s husband, Charles Ross, but gained its greatest fame after Duval took over in 1859. The Guardian has a tribute to her.

Marvel Studios announces…something at 2 PM

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Marvel Studios is holding a press conference at 2 pm edt/11pdt today and you can follow along at the Marvel live blog, or Twitter or smokesignals, or whatever method you prefer.

While most guess it could be about the ‘Batch being cast as Doctor Strange, it could also be about other mystery slots in the movie schedule, or it could be the Age of Ultron trailer that was supposed to officially debut tonight, or about Katee Sackhoff starring as lady Captain Marvel in Avengers 3.

31 Day of Halloween: I.N.J. Culbard adapting The King in Yellow

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English artist INJ Culbard has become the resident HP Lovecraft expert at SelfMadeHero with several of his adaptations of Lovecraft (The Case of Charles Dexter Ward, The Shadow Out of Time and The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath) turning into bestsellers for the Brit Literary Comics house. Well, it seems his next book is one that greatly influenced Lovecraft—and Stephen King, and Marion Zimmer Bradley, and Raymond Chandler and True Detective—namely The King in Yellow by Robert W. Chambers. The 1895 short story collection centers around a sinister play called “The King in Yellow” and this title character, as well as Carcosa were used in Season 1 of True Detective, and gave the cult book a new life.

Benedict Cumberbatch to play Doctor Strange

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Benedict Cumberbatch will play Doctor Strange in the upcoming MArvel movie.

Some say he is merely “in talks” but we all know that this was fated to be, and it was doubtless some arcane spell cast by legions of Cumberphiles putting a whammy on Joaquin Phoenix—perhaps some kind of spell of confusion that made him think that playing Doctor Strange in the upcoming Marvel movie would not be the best thing  for his career.

 

But now all is right with the world, and the ‘Batch will play the sorcerer supreme. I mean, really, is there anyone who didn’t think this was perfect casting the moment it slippied in a sigh from a Tumblr user’s lips?

What is the #1 Comics Blog?

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Did I get tricked into running this somewhat non-slick infographic because The Beat is ranked #8 in a list of the top 100 comics blogs? You bet. But I did like that The Nib is #1. I think the chart went by Alexa rankings and it includes webcomics among the blogs, which doesn’t really make any sense. But anyway, talking points.

Marvel comics come to Kobo

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Marvel collected editions are already available on iVerse, and some other digital platforms, and now, Kobo, the Canadian-based device that also offers apps for Mac, Android, and desktop. Marvel periodicals continues to be exclusive at Comixology and their own Marvel Unlimited All-you-can-ead service, but the GNs are everywhere.

What did we tell you about attempts to diversify digital distribution?

Housekeeping: The worst mouse of all time

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Housekeeping: The Beat was down a bit over the weekend when my web host moved it to a faster, more up to date server. I also got one of those new fangled Time Warner modems that offers five times faster internet speed. So we’re TURBO here!

At the same time, the mouse I’ve been using for about five years went belly up. The coffee spill that happened a few weeks ago may have contributed but the autopsy results aren’t in yet. I immediately went to Staples and bought a $10 mouse as a stopgap, and upon getting it home it did not work. PERIOD. MELONFARMER. NEVER BUY CHEAP TECH. However, luckily later in the day I was walking by a pile of discarded computer equipment and was able to obtain a Mighty Mouse from the pile.

Lots of pushback on that $589,000 Tezuka Kickstarter from DMP

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The other day we reported on DMP’s new Kickstarter which hopes to publish some untranslated works by Osamu Tezuka but as a pretty hefty price: $360,000 to put out 20 books, and stretch goals that go all the way up to $589,000 for all 31 volumes. Understandably, a lot of manga observers have questioned this amount and the reward tiers— for instance, when this all started the lowest amount you could pledge to actually get a book was $150!

31 Days of Halloween: Sexy Ebola Cleanup Nurse is really Sexy Breaking Bad

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If you’ve been hanging out on the internet this weekend you have have seen the above shocking “Sexy Ebola Nurse” costume going around on the Reddits and twits. Is it a real thing? Although we can’t imagine some gallows humor experts won’t wear Ebola-themed costumes this year, this particular costume is actually a repurposing of LAST year’s top meme, Breaking Bad, as it began life as a sexy Walter White in the lab costume.

NYCC ’14 wrap-up: on the clearing of rooms and who’s bigger

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I know there are a few panel wrap ups still coming down the pike here and there, but I wanted to essentially wrap up my NYCC coverage with a look a two issues which seem to catch everyone’s attention: the announced attendance of 151,000 and the brand new practice of clearing rooms between panels in the […]

31 days of Halloween: Constantine debuts tonight and here’s your guide

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Yes, tonight is the night—the third of DC’s fall TV shows debuts on NBC at 10 pm EDT, Constantine starring Matt Ryan as the man, Harold Perrineau as Manny the angel, Charles Halford as best bud Chas, and in the pilot, Lucy Griffiths as the companion, Liv. This role is changed in future episodes to […]

Riverdale: Drama series based on Archie being developed at Fox

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We’ve had a lighthearted take on Archie in the wider media for a long time—from Sugar Sugar to Sabrina, but it’s time to take a more serious look at the world of Riverdale. Greg Berlanti, the tv genius behind Arrow, The Flash and Supergirl, is developing a more serious take on the citizens of Riverdale, to be called…RIVERDALE:

31 Days of Halloween: Buffy The Vampire Slayer’s wraparound cover by Steve Morris

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Okay can you say instant classic? HALLOWEEN JUST GOT REAL, people. This wraparound cover by Steve Morris is for Buffy The Vampire Slayer  Season 10 #8 and I’m told it’s a great jumping on point. No, that is not OUR Steve Morris. The issue is on sale this week.

Alert! Daily Marvel Event teases NEW event: Inhumans: Attilan Rising

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Another day another Marvel event teaser, but this one is DIFFERENT. Instead of teasing the return of a golden oldie event, today’s, revealed at EW, is
a new event titled Inhumans: Attilan Rising, with art by W. Scott Forbes.
This is significant for many reasons.

For years, the word on the street has been that Marvel hopes to elevate the Inhumans paving the way for a movie property featuring a band of weirdly powered misfits to make up for not having the X-Men in their film universe. (Fox has the rights and shows no signs of slowing down with the franchise.)

Nice Art: The Valiant #2 by Kindt, Lemire, Rivera and Francavilla

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The Valiant is the lynchpin of Valiant Next, a new hopping on point for readers from Valiant. A prestige format limited series with art by Paolo Rivera, and a variant cover by Francesco Francavilla, there’s no chance we’re not going to run a preview any time it gets into our inbox. The story by Matt Kindt and Jeff Lemire doesn’t hurt either.

And oops, a Tezuka Kickstarter that ran into problems

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Speaking of manga, as we just were, and Tezuka and Kickstarter as we were yesterday, here is another Tezuka Kickstarter project that has kind of gone into the “Kickstarter failure” file. Last June something called Kansai Club Publishing raised more than $52,000 to publish an English language version of Tezuka’s The Crater. This is a […]