Kibbles ‘n’ Bits, 4/28/09

<---People---->
§ Evan Dorkin passes on the ways of his tribe to his child, Emily via WALT AND SKEEZIX:

Anyway, as I posted recently, some cheap copies popped up on Amazon, and we purchased one for the framing project. Our plan hasn’t quite worked out, however, as Emily has started reading the second copy, and has sort of adopted it. Not that I’m complaining. Seeing her pore over the book kills me. She’s been quoting some of the dialogue (“Well I’ll be jiggered”, being the line that cracks me up the most) and really enjoys reading the strips, especially the ones where Skeezix is a toddler. Emily has up until now had a strict policy of not enjoying comics that “have people in them” — she’s been reading Disney books (mostly Donald Duck), some old Disney film adaptations (mostly Dumbo), Molly and Emmett comics from Ladybug magazine (Molly is a girl but Emmett is a cat), Polo (two new volumes out soon), Johnny Boo (ghosts and a monster) and Pixie and Dixie and Mr. Jinks comics in an old Whitman collection. She has been reading Julie and Grampa: Shark Hunters, actually, which has human protagonists, but there are a lot of talking animals in that as well. And there are monsters and creatures in Magic Trixie and Scary Godmother, which she’s nuts about. But Dennis the Menace was out, as were several other comics “with people in them”. But so far, the Walt and Skeezix Sunday strips have passed muster, perhaps because of the many dream sequences and strips based on Halloween and Christmas and whatnot. Who knows, I’m not going to press her on it, we let her enjoy what she likes and don’t shove anything down her throat if she’s not interested. For some reason she won’t read Hideshi Hino comics. Don’t ask me.

§ At CBR, George Khoury interviews Spanish art great Miguelanxo Prado:

Some of your short stories and books contain a certain voyeuristic quality to them. Are you someone who likes to observe the actions and movements of others? Are there always parts of your works that are based on such experiences?

Inevitably. There’s an attractive aspect to art, that it is the interior universe of the creator. But, most of the time, for me that sole element seems insufficient. The other aspect that makes me feel attracted to the work of an artist is their personal form of seeing and interpreting the world, sentiments, society, human beings… the universe, to that extent. And that interpretation has to bear fruit, inescapably, to observations and reflection.

I’d say “yes,” that all my comics works are based, to a greater or lesser degree, on experiences.

§ This disturbingly detailed report on the DC softball team’s upcoming season lists Nel Yomtov among the league’s leading sluggers. Isn’t this the same Nelson Yomtov who has been around for like…forever? Did he secretly steal some of that Super Serum when he was at Marvel?

§ Scott McCloud examines highly experimental webcomics:

I sometimes joke that my early experiments in webcomics put me in comics’ “lunatic fringe” but it’s nice to know that there are artists like Sutu out there that make my scribblings look tame by comparison. He tells me he may release a graphic novel follow-up including the first chapters on DVD, so I guess all the walls between print and web are tumbling down if a strange beast like Nawlz can cross the line.

§ Headline of the day: Mr. T and Will Wright fight Nazis

<---Places---->
§ Some Philadelphia fans aren’t happy with the planned activities for Wizard World Philadelphia and they are planning a protest, in accordance with the democratic principles of this great nation:

“We are a group of fans that are staging a funeral for what is known as Wizard World Philadelphia,” he said over email. “The majority of us have been going for most of the years the con has been open. It has gotten to the point where convention coordinators who once asked us for feedback and what we would enjoy at WWP have been let go and new ones just don’t care. It is like the captain going down with the ship. Now with the new acquisition of Big Apple Con and it being in New York, we are to believe they wouldn’t want to use the time or the resources to stage two cons merely two hours apart.”

<---Things---->

Robbinsredskull5

§ CARTOON FLOPHOUSE is a prolific new blog by cartoonist Michael Aushenker that looks back and forth at all manner of off the beaten path cartoonists. A recent subject: Frank Robbins, who drew comics from the Silver Age on.

That’s because Frank Robbins has always been a polarizing figure in the annals of Marvel. People flat out either loved his style or despised it, and the proof is all over the letters pages of THE INVADERS, THE HUMAN FLY, GHOST RIDER, LUKE CAGE, CAPTAIN AMERICA and other titles he ran stints on. Given the two camps, I belonged to the former. I loved his anatomically incorrect, funky-posed superheroes and his Flash-paced action, the best combo being the two Franks: Robbins inked by Springer. Robbins was no prim and perfect Neal Adams, photo-realistically rendered and almost static at times…his work was high-octane, breakneck-speed fun and trashy, in the best, B-comic sense. You didn’t stick a Robbins comic in a mylar and mount it on your wall, you rolled it up in your back pocket and took it with you wherever you went. Yes, Frank Robbins had soul.


(Confession, we never could stand Robbins art as a kid; but we didn’t much like Kirby then either so obviously we were jerks. )

§ Paul DiFilippo reviews a few GNs at B&N.com.

§ Some fellow has started The Definitive Guide to the History of the Comic Book Industry as an editable Google Doc…anyone can edit. Go have fun!

§ Kristy Valenti and Shakespeare investigate The Seven Stages of the Comics Critic. We’re at the hazy and rambling stage ourselves.

Comments

  1. Actually Frank Robbins started in comics in 1939 (working on Scorchy Smith) then had his own “Terry and the Pirates”/”Scorch Smith” knock-off “Johnny Hazard” which started in 1944 and ran until 1977 I think. So he predates the Silver Age by quite a bit. Later in his career, he churned out numerous weird (but to my eyes, compelling) issues of The Invaders, Man From Atlantis, Ghost Rider, etc., as well as creating the character Man-Bat. I love “Johnny Hazard” and generally think Robbins has been grossly under-rated. He was a workhorse with a unique “mutant Milton Caniff” style.

  2. Re: Frank Robbins
    As a kid I couldn’t grok his work, but I certainly grokked Jack Kirby’s work.

    As a side note: At a very early age, I was convinced I could draw way better than that Bob Kane guy who did the art for Batman.

  3. Man, I didn’t know Robbins worked on mainstream stuff – I just always loved his Johnny Hazard art.

  4. I’m surprised you’d promote that Flophouse site, since it’s being run by a spammer who refuses to respond to requests to be removed from his mailing list, even from those who never asked to be on it in the first place.

  5. Pedro Bouça says:

    I didn’t (and DON’T) like Robbins’ artwork, but loved Kirby as a kid.

    Ditko is the one I didn’t enjoy but now do.

    Best,
    Hunter (Pedro Bouça)

  6. I remember hating Robbins work in Detective Comics, his Squishy Headed Batman with the Clumpy Cape and blobs of black ink all over the page.

    I began to appreciate his work much more later on, years later. His way of breaking down a scene and showing action. Burly figures, lots of drama. He knew his stuff.

    He was underappreciated in comics, of course. But to be fair to comic readers in the 70′s, Robbins’ style WAS quite a switch from the Batman we knew, as drawn by Neal Adams, Bob Brown, Irv Novick etc.

  7. Re: Wizard World Philly

    I’m a frequenter of said message boards where this item developed, while good intentioned this “Funeral For A Friend” may be these guys have reached levels of asshattery that few can only aspire to reach.

    Sure Wizard canned everyone who was booking/coordinating this show, but they’ve updated the guest list and it’s actually looking better.

    Was it a good move on Wizard’s behalf to move this con up against HeroesCon, a wildly successful show which already attracts a lot of the A-Listers? Absolutely. As a fan and attendee of multiple Philly shows, my confidence has been shaken … but I’ll still be there having NOTHING to do with this ridiculousness.

  8. Hey, Johanna,

    Apologies are in order….I’m new to the blogspot format and I had not realized until tonight that the emails were piling up. I was just trying to keep you in touch with the new site, which has weekly interviews with cartoonists, and I had no intention of spamming you.

    Your lack of interest has been duly noted and your email has been removed. I apologize for the inconvenience. It was all a misunderstanding.

    best,

    The Management over at cartoonflophouse.blogspot.com

  9. CARTOON FLOPHOUSE has a great mix of indie creators and classic Marvel/DC artists. In my experience, so many indie/alt cartoonists grew up on the Silver and Bronze Age classics, it makes sense that the brightest of the new (see recent Jose Cabrera interview) and best of the old mix together on one blog. Kudos to Michael Aushenker for the Flophouse!

  10. Josh Bryan says:

    We are not planning post, merely saying good bye to such a great con. They have added some great names and we were working with the con coordinators to make this such a great con. But we believe this one to be its last. In a business since would you keep two cons that are merely two hours apart. Or separate yourself from one that is in a city that doesn’t pull the revenue that the other can.

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