§ We’ve always been a bit baffled by the real life superhero phenomenon, but this one is pretty cool, as a well-established NYC team is fighting recent gay-bashing incidents:
As a spate of hate crimes targets New York’s gay community, a team of real life superheroes is patrolling the streets — and their names are Spyder, Spectre, Dark Guardian and Zero. After the May 18 killing of gay Harlem resident Mark Carson, 33, and several beatings of gay men across the city, the group of self-styled heroes plans to hit the streets of Greenwich Village and the West Village dressed in tactical clothing and bulletproof vests, explained Staten Island-based crime-fighter Dark Guardian.
Dark Guardian has actually been around for several years, and appeared in the HBO documentary n the fad.
§ Over at Parallel Worlds, Scott Snyder contextualizes his view of New York and how it informs his Gotham City:
Now, 25 years later, the city has changed dramatically. Sure, the old vices are there, or there in different ways, and but I’d argue that for most of us who live or work in the city, our big fears about New York have changed. For better or worse, New York of the 2010’s isn’t the city of the 1980’s. The same center that was rotting away when I was a kid is now bright and blinding. The subways are cleaner. Central Park is safer. There are gangs and drugs and crime, but it seems to me – and maybe I’m wrong but still – that the big fears, the nightmares we suffer together generally have more to do with the threat of big, senseless violence. The random attack that could erupt on a subway or hit a building at any moment. Sirens and screams on a sunny day.
§ It’s been a while since we checked in on writer Peter David’s recovery from a stroke five months ago; amazingly he’s now appearing at cons and other personal appearances. here’s a comprehensive update:
Everyone who talked to him at Phoenix Comic Con can attest to how well he is doing. We also got to thank people in person for all their help and well wishes. Wil Wheaton told me that he boosted the signal for Peter on his twitter feed. There are good days and bad days. He injured his right calf muscle just about right after he had gotten his gait pretty much back to normal so he didn’t need his cane of support. This has now solved itself. He bowled rather well this past Tuesday. We are still very grateful to everyone who has helped us on this unexpected journey. Your good thoughts and support have helped us through a pretty dark time. I am seeing light at the end of this tunnel and I don’t believe it is the oncoming train.
§ As if you couldn’t guess from the volume and quality of his commenting on the Beat of late, Kurt Busiek is BACK, and his blog is too:
As you probably know, I got pretty sick for quite a while, and even after having gall bladder surgery last summer, it’s been a long, slow, recovery process. I’m still not back to 100% (or 100% of whatever percent I functioned at, back when things were clicking), but I’ve recovered enough to get work done more steadily, at least. Not fast, mind you, but faster than the near-standstill I’ve been at the last few years. The first evidence of that is that ASTRO CITY returns to publication tomorrow, and I’ve done enough interviews around the ‘net about that that I won’t go over the details again (there’s a link to one of those interviews in the previous entry), and I couldn’t be happier about it. Brent and I have been slowly shambling forward on the book the whole time we’ve been “gone,” but it’s great to be back trading e-mails and phone calls with Alex Ross, John G. Roshell and Alex Sinclair as we get issues lettered, colored and cover-arted. Everyone’s got new energy and new ideas, so we’re working as a familiar, friendly group, and everyone’s bringing new stuff to the mix.
New Mat Brinkman stuff from Picturebox Heads Collider, a 48 page “exploration of drawing and color” that uses paper bleed through for an eerie effect.
§ This maybe should have been in yesterday’s comics shop roundup news, but Wimpy Kid’s Jeff Kinney is thinking of opening a bookstore in his local area:
Kinney and his wife ended up buying the market and the building next to it, which will be made into a parking lot. “I’ve had a lot of success. It seemed like the right thing to do,” said Kinney, who wanted to help his community by restoring the downtown to its former glory. Because the market was in such bad shape, he had to tear it down and is currently working with architects to build a three-story colonial on the site. He envisions retail on the ground floor – a 3,000-sq.-ft. bookstore and cafe – a community center with yoga and classes on the second floor, and offices above.
Jeff Kinney is a job creator!
§ In light of this week’s DC SQuared news, Corey Blake gives a brief history of “enhanced” digital comics —this piece is interesting to me because it pegs Yvyes Bigeral, aka Balak as the Philo Farnsworth of his particular line of thought; he’s an influential tinker about this for sure.
§ The Telegraph’s cartoonist Christian Adamswonders about movies that feature a cartoonist as the main character and can get no further than How to Murder Your Wife and The Hand. Saddened that he never heard of Monkeybone. Zodiac is mentioned in the comments…any other suggestions?
“You can’t be comprehensive because it’s too big a piece of pie to swallow — or apple, rather,” Mr. Kuper said. Instead, he inks his own experiences, which seem informed by the twin responses shared by many New York transplants: anxiety and wonder.
§ An attendee at an arts festival in the UKhas baffled authorities by leaving a cartoon behind. I guess life has a tranquil pace in Northumberland.
§ Another look at