This year, for the first time in many, I was unable to celebrate International Superhero Day (28th April), in the manner to which I have become accustomed, by donning spandex and bounding over rooftops to fight my subjective idea as to what constitutes ‘crime’, because my doing so would have objectively been a crime, thanks to local lockdown ordinances.
You know what are objectively not crimes due to local lockdown ordinances? This week’s links, which you can find below.
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This week's cover, "Still Life," by Chris Ware, features a kaleidoscopic account of a single day in New York, which has become an epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. "I love it like no other city," Ware said. "Teeming with unpredictable people and unimaginable places and unforeseeable moments." #NewYorkerCovers
It's 2:30. I'm washing the carbon paper… This week’s news.
• As the mounting problem of pandemic economics continues to cast a shadow over retailers, there are more fundraising initiatives popping up to help people weather the storm, including Insider Art’s three-pronged fundraiser for female and non-binary comics retailers, which you can take part in now.
• Meanwhile, the ongoing efforts of the Book Industry Charitable Foundation has seen $150,ooo distributed to retailers in need so far, with 135 having received financial support through their fund, and over 700 stores having applied, with more being processed - current fundraising efforts are doing a good job of keeping the operating reserves topped up.
• On the creator side of things, ShortBox have announced the first five recipients of their micro-grants program; Perfectly Acceptable Press have announced the three recipients of their Pumpkin’s Remote Residency program; and Koyama Press have showcased another of their ...Provides’ project grant recipients. All creators worth checking out and giving a follow on social media, if you’re so inclined.
• The National Cartoonists Society have announced the shortlist for the 74th Annual NCS Reuben Awards, so congratulations are due to Lynda Barry, Terri Libenson, Hilary B. Price, Mark Tatulli, and Raina Telgemeier - the winner will be announced via virtual ceremony, details TBA.
• This edition’s Auction Story arrived fairly early in the week, saving me the anxiety of wondering whether this would be the week that broke the streak I’m striving to maintain, as Nate D. Sanders Auctions announced they would be putting up a wealth of classic works from both the Sheldon Mayer Estate, and that of Chic Young; and, as a bonus, here is a list of some Peanuts notables, and what they made at auction.
• If you’re one of the many missing spending your spring and summer weekends squeezing into a hall devoid of natural light to join a lot of queues, then there are a variety of options to help tide you over, until mass gatherings are allowed once more: Comic Conline, taking place over the next three days, sees creators given an hour time slot to chat with the audience; Stay-At-Home-Con has been taking place this week over on Infinite Realities Comics’ Facebook and YouTube pages; and Socially Distant Comic Con takes place today, in support of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and Book Industry Charitable Foundation.
• Speaking of the CBLDF, they have added two new members to their Board of Directors, industry veteran Bob Wayne and Eisner-nominated retailer Jen King.
• After the world bid farewell to Albert Uderzo last month, April brings us news that a new Asterix album will be published this year, as Asterix and the Golden Menhir arrives in October - with a story originally published in audio-book form in 1967, the album will feature restored artwork from that release, that was overseen by Uderzo prior to his death.
• Similar to recent discussions surrounding Boom! Studios (who, incidentally, decided it was time to restate their bona fides), last weekend saw a number of whisper networks made public, following posts regarding publisher Nobrow’s alleged business practices (who, incidentally, also decided it was time to restate their bona fides), which lead to the stepping down of Nobrow's Managing Director, Sam Arthur, from the board of the Association of Illustrators. This is a developing story, and TCJ has a statement regarding coverage of it here.
Nobody trusts anybody now, and we're all very tired… COVID-19 direct market upheaval.
[Direct market periodicals continue to go through the wringer, as the pandemic endures, so here’s a blow-by-blow of what happened over the last week, as previously established business practices devolve into a mass game of Calvinball - Clark]
• Continuing to chart their own course through unknown waters, DC provided an explanation (of sorts) as to why they’re choosing to go with multi-distributor shipping, which basically boils down to “people want comics,” while also acknowledging that stores may not be open to allow people to buy said comics. The spice must flow.
• Parallel to this, Diamond Distribution announced that their shipping of periodicals would resume on 20th May, with a final order cutoff of 4th May for retailers whose customers may not be in a position to even buy comics at that point, and the merry-go-round of whether they’ll be distributing DC’s comics continued to whirl and whirl and whirl.
• This was followed by Diamond’s CEO, Steve Geppi, appearing on a livestream, and attempting to make the market-reassuring noises you’d expect a CEO to make during times of crisis, but talking up your line of credit is a weird look when you’re paying your suppliers 25% of what you owe them for the foreseeable future, no matter how essential that move was, in my quite humblest of opinions.
• With regards to the actual production of periodicals to ship, as well as the staggering of printings to later in the year, in order to prevent stores being swamped with new issues when they do open up, publishers have begun to furlough staff, including Marvel and IDW, with the former confirming that no new comics would be published this week, even on digital platforms.
• And, if the comics make it to their intended destinations, we of course continue to see new bespoke publisher plans of how products can be sent back again, if record levels of unemployment do indeed equate to people not being in a position to make non-essential purchases at this time.
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who doesn’t love a little padre-mijo bonding time? today is the #paindonthurtexhibition and i’m so pleased to have been a part of it. Road House is a film that i’ve always had a soft spot for because it is, in my mind, a very tender film about soft dudes who hold so much affection and love for each other and — yeah okay sometimes they also rip out people’s throats. thanks so much to @nickholmesdraws & @print_wagon_ for organising this tribute to an absolute legend of a movie, check out the exhibition hashtag for the other amazing artists taking part and remember, people, for the love of all that is holy PLEASE do not eat the big white mint ⚪️❌⚪️ #roadhouse #fancomic #illustration #beniceuntilitstimetonotbenice #comic #artistsoninstagram #roadhousemovie #dalton #wadegarrett #scrunchieappreciation
It’s all happening… This week’s reviews.
• J. Caleb Mozzococco reviews the monotheistic buddy cop narrative of Mark Russell, Richard Pace, et al’s Second Coming.
• Leonard Pierce reviews the case for the existence of Vincent Delmas, Christophe Regnault, et al’s Churchill: A Graphic Biography, as translated by Ivanka Hahnenberger.
• Tim Hayes reviews Masters of British Comic Art, the new coffee-table tome looking at the (fractious at times) history of Britain’s comic creators and industry, and talks to its editor, David Roach.
• Anya Davidson reviews the recurring themes of Will Dinski's latest book, Holy Hannah.
• Joe McCulloch reviews the balancing act of Yoshiharu Tsuge's The Swamp, translated by Ryan Holmberg.
• Ryan Pagella reviews the funky espionage of Chelsea Cain, Lia Miternique, Elise Mccall, et al’s Spy Island #1.
• Nathan Simmons reviews the weird set-pieces of Mike Barry’s YA adventure, Action Tank: Book 2.
• Nicole Herviou reviews the bifurcated band biography of David Avidan, Brian Wecht, Ittai Manero, et al’s Ninja Sex Party: The Graphic Novel, Part I: Origins.
• Jordan Richards reviews the vicious surprise of Yuji Kaku’s Hell’s Paradise: Jigokuraku volume 1, and the visual noise of Masashi Kishimoto and Akira Okubo’s Samurai 8: the Tale of Hachimaru volume 1.
• David Brooke reviews the slow-burn horror of Laura Marks and Kelley Jones’ Daphne Byrne #4; and the finale of Simon Spurrier and Bilquis Eveley’s journey into the Sandman universe, The Dreaming #20.
• Morgana Santilli reviews Aoi Makino’s trauma-confronting manga thriller, Not Your Idol.
• John Seven reviews the Peak Depardieu of Mathieu Sapin’s Gérard: Five Years with Depardieu.
• Moe Abbas reviews Rik Worth, Jordan Collver, et al’s journey back to the early days of mysticism and parapsychology, Hocus Pocus #1; and the ultra-violence of Alex de Campi, Robert Hack, et al's Archie vs Predator II.
• Rebecca Burke reviews Sean Michael Wilson and Fumio Obata’s meditation on mindfulness, The Garden.
Four Color Apocalypse
Ryan C reviews the purposeful dread of Laurence Engraver’s Drippin’; Evan M. Cohen’s eye-opening zine, Blind; and Travis Dandro's child eye view memoir, King of King Court. (Also: wrist-mounted timepieces.)
Rachel Cooke brings us her next ‘graphic novel of the month’ as she reviews the learning and hope at the heart of Jean-Noël Fabiani and Philippe Bercovici’s Medicine: A Graphic History.
House to Astonish
Paul O’Brien reviews the first two issues of Hickman et al’s oversized series on one-shots, Giant-Size X-Men.
Ayoola Solarin reviews the shortcomings of Damian Duffy and John Jennings’ Parable of the Sower: A Graphic Novel Adaptation, reworking Octavia Butler’s science fiction classic to comics form.
Library Journal (starred reviews)
Douglas Rednour reviews Mikaël’s minutely-detailed graphic novel, Giant.
• CK Stewart reviews Dan Gordon and Ismael Hernandez’ prehistoric adventure, Wolf and Crow #1.
• Justin Partridge reviews Mark Russell, Marco Santucci, et al’s brutal throwback, Swamp Thing: New Roots.
• David Pepose reviews Michael Grey, Ryan Benjamin, et al’s action-packed Batman: Gotham Nights #2.
• Continuing the look back at classic (and I mean classic) Image titles:
- Christa Harader reviews Mark Evanier, Sergio Aragonés, et al’s Groo #1;
- Christopher Egan reviews Brian Hotton, Dale Keown, et al’s Pitt #1;
- Joe Skonce reviews Erik Larsen, et al’s The Savage Dragon #1;
- Brian Salvatore reviews Rob Liefeld, et al's Supreme #1;
- Michael Govan reviews Jim Lee, et al's Stormwatch #1;
- Jodi Odgers reviews Alan Moore, Dave Gibbons, et al's 1963 #1;
- Kate Kosturski reviews Todd McFarlane, et al's Spawn #1;
- and Elias Rosner yuks it up with Stupid #1.
• Christopher Chiu-Tabet reviews Mike Maddox, Jeff Anderson, et al’s graphical take on the greatest story ever told in The Lion Graphic Bible.
Have capsule reviews of:
• The unsettling appeal of Michel Fiffe's Panorama.
• The fast-paced homage of Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips' Pulp.
• The respectable fidelity of Aya Morton and Fred Fordham's adaptation of the F. Scott Fitzgerald classic, The Great Gatsby: The Graphic Novel.
• The haunting nature of Gipi's One Story, as translated by Jamie Richards.
• Closing out ‘manga week’ on their site, Ryan Carey reviews the mysterious innovation of Yuichi Yokoyama’s Outdoors, translated by Ryan Holmberg; and then takes a look at the unique coming of age narrative that’s driving Colin Lidston’s The Age Of Elves.
• Daniel Elkin reviews the existential crisis of Victor Martins’ Cabra Cabra.
Women Write About Comics
• Masha Zhdanova takes advantage of Tokyopop’s selection of free first volumes and reviews the divergent depictions of internalized homophobia in Akashi’s Still Sick and Gorou Kanbe’s Don’t Call me Daddy.
• Sabina Stent reviews Lucy Brownridge and Alice Wietzel’s illustrated biography of the ‘mother of American modernism’, in Portrait of an Artist: Georgia O’Keeffe.
• Lisa Fernandes reviews Ryan Parrott, Jacob Edgar, et al’s delightfully bizarre return to the well, Death to the Army of Darkness #2.
• Alenka Figa reviews Jane Mai's heartbreaking vampire tale, Soft.
I see a rhetorical question on the horizon… This week’s interviews.
• As the last of the summer’s planned comics shows bow out and cancel this year’s iterations, Michael O'Connell talks to the Small Press Expo’s Executive Director, Warren Bernard, about planning events in uncertain times, and the difficulties in narrowing down one’s favorite political cartoonists.
• Meanwhile, Keith Silva continues the Art in Quarantine series, and talks to TCJ co-founder, and doyen of comics, Gary Groth, about his recovery from COVID-19 and publishing during a pandemic.
• Nicholas Burman brings us a European edition of Retail Therapy, talking to the owner of Amsterdam's renowned comic store Lambiek, Boris Kousemaker, about its history, the Netherlands' ongoing response to the pandemic, and the current difficulties in getting new stock from Belgium.
• Chris Coplan talks to Tonči Zonjić about his approach to art, and his predictions for the future of comics; Ryan Parrott about his daily routine; and the staff of Valiant Entertainment about their day-to-day roles.
• Chris Hassan talks to Kieron Gillen about... a variety of topics.
• Joe Grunenwald talks to Mark Russell about everybody’s favorite Batman, Batman; and David Rubin about collaborating with Jeff Lemire on the Black Hammer spin-off series Sherlock Frankenstein & The Legion of Evil, who brings along a free digital copy of the series’ first issue into the bargain.
• On a similar note, Zack Quaintance talks to Christopher Golden about his work on Baltimore: The Plague Ships, and he also brings along a free digital copy of the series' first issue for you to enjoy.
• Matt O’Keefe flips the script and interviews Make It Then Tell Everybody’s Dan Berry about how his interview series helped prepare him for going full-time making comics and then telling everybody about them.
• Cori McCreery talks to Steve Orlando about his work on everybody’s favourite Nightwing, Nightwing.
Nancy Powell sits down with Kate Karyus Quinn, Demitria Lunetta, Maca Gil, and Sarah Stern to talk about their new YA graphic novel for DC, Anti/Hero.
• Allen Thomas talks to Jessi Zarbasky about her graphic novel, Witchlight, and the themes of queerness and grief that surface through the story.
• Frederick Luis Aldama has another dissection for us, as he talks through the Anatomy of a Panel with La Voz De M.A.Y.O. Tata Rambo creators Henry Barajas and J. Gonzo, about a two page/18 panel spread from that book.
Alex Segura interviews Ed Brubaker about his new digital comics project, Friday, and the inspiration and references that have been written into it.
Christian Holub talks to Simon Spurrier and Bilquis Evely, as their tenure on The Dreaming comes to a close.
Rachel Dixon talks to illustrator Jonathan Edwards about his travel sketchbooks, and where he’d like to draw once lockdowns have been lifted.
Brigid Alverson interviews First Second’s editorial director, Mark Siegel, about the economics of selling books during a pandemic, and the politics of printing books in China.
LA Review of Books
Brianne Jaquette interviews Frank Santoro about his latest graphic novel, Pittsburgh, and the use of color and image construction in its narrative.
Lo Spazio Bianco
Emilio Cirri talks to Ales Kot about work-for-hire, ending series early, and the outsider perspective on American politics.
Kate Kosturski talks to comics creator and retailer Eddie deAngelini about his current crowd-funding project, and retailing during times of crisis.
• Lan Pitts talks to Todd McFarlane, who continues to be extremely vocal on the state of the industry, this time comparing the current direct market creators with the original Image pantheon; and sits down with Kieron Gillen and Jim Rossignol to talk about their collaborating to write new series Ludocrats.
• Kat Calamia interviews Jim Starlin about his return to drawing comics, and the changing realities of promoting a new comic book series in the digital age.
• Vaneta Rogers talks to Joelle Jones about working during the pandemic, ahead of her Hero Initiative fundraising event.
• George Marston talks to Declan Shalvey about bringing Punisher MAX’s brutal antagonist, Barracuda, into the mainstream Marvel comics line.
Paul Slade talks to Gosh! Comics’ co-owner, Andrew Salmond, about the store’s history, the London comics scene, and the UK retail market weathering the pandemic.
Karama Horne interviews Anthony Cleveland and Antonio Fuso about collaborating on their new alien-abduction mystery, Stargazer.
Women Write About Comics
Masha Zhdanova talks to Kaylee Rowena about her work on The Scent of May Rain, and how she got started making comics.
#ReadAboutComicsStayHome… This week’s features and long-reads.
• Also here at TCJ, Oliver Ristau wishes Alex Niño a happy 80th birthday, dissecting the artist's influences, his brutalist chops, and love for the uncanny.
• Sheehan Hannan has a long piece up ostensibly looking at the life and work of Derf Backderf, and his upcoming new graphic novel Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio, but that also spins out into a wider essay on the importance of creative works, and the hope they can provide, during troubling times.
• The Guardian’s My Favourite Book As A Kid feature adds another comic to its roster, as author Nikesh Shukla looks back at the hope hidden in the darkness of Spider-Man: Kraven’s Last Hunt.
• Also at The Guardian, Nadja Sayej takes a look at the Society of Illustrators’ digital exhibition, Women In Comics: Looking Forward and Back, which will run until October, currently in digital form while lockdowns are in effect.
• Taking a somewhat optimistic view of the upcoming publishing schedule, Douglas Rednor has put together a preview of 2020 in graphic novels, for the Library Journal.
• Depending on whether you like your COVID-19 retail market predictions with a dose of optimism or pessimism, Milton Griepp has both flavors for you, as ICv2 looks towards ‘Geek Winter’ and ‘Geek Spring’, handily avoiding the season that would drag me into an existential debate as to whether to use “fall” or “autumn” in this column.
• Illogical Volume takes a brief look back at issue 6 of Alan Moore and Jacen Burrow’s Providence, and its place in the wider discussion of Moore’s work.
• Chris Ware is at it again, as he provides the cover for the latest issue of The New Yorker, a depiction of a city “teeming with unpredictable people, and unimaginable places and unforeseeable moments.”
• There’s a new issue of the European Comic Art journal available, this time with articles on postmodernism, Liv Strömquist, colonialism, and more.
• ShelfDust’s Seven Critics of Victory reach Grant Morrison’s take on the New Gods’ escape artist bar none, as Sara Century looks back at Mister Miracle #1, while Steve Morris makes his Marvel and checks in on J. Jonah Jameson’s journalistic ethics.
• Writing for the New York Times, Gavin Edwards catches up with daily newspaper cartoonists, including Mark Tatulli, Ray Billingsley, Bill Hinds, and Lalo Alcaraz, to find out how they’re adapting to working during the pandemic.
• David Harper has made his oral history of Wednesday Comics free-to-read, over at SKTCHD, bringing together some of the key creators to talk about how the weekly anthology broadsheet came about.
• Matt O'Keefe looks back on TKO Studios' performance, since the publisher's launch, and how they're faring in the comics market.
• Broken Frontier have another Inside Look, as Daniel Bristow-Bailey gives a director's commentary on his graphic medicine one-shot, The Screaming.
#ReadComicsStayHome… This week’s comics offerings from the web.
• The Nib continues to have a pandemic-focus (for obvious reasons), as Maria Stoian balances the dangers of COVID with those posed by climate change, Joey Alison Sayers is working overtime, and Sarah Mirk has ideas on how to spend that stimulus check.
• As part of The New York Times’ Earth Day coverage, Peter Kuper looks back at Rachel Carson’s generation-galvanising book Silent Spring, in comic form, and asks what, if anything, has changed since its publication?
• There’s a new issue of PanelxPanel out in the wild, and this time around editor Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou has assembled a crack team of commentators to talk about first issues.
• There’s a new vigilante coming to the Black Hammer universe, and you can (legally) read the first issue of Jeff Lemire and Tonči Zonjić’s series, Skulldigger + Skeleton Boy, for free right now.
• Olivia Jaimes, once again, goes for the jugular, and leaves no survivors.
• If you’re looking for a new series to jump onto then, oh boy, does Jessi Sheron have a thread of comics promo tweets for you.
• Solrad have added a new title to their 'Presents' line-up, welcoming into the fold Lyssa Park's new series, Phone Book.
• “Clark,” I hear you say, “I know you already linked to one free Frankenstein-related comic, but… are there any more this week?” Well, precocious one, you’re in luck, because you can also read the first issue of Mike Mignola, Ben Stenbeck, et al’s Frankenstein Underground right now, for free.
• As part of Alt Free Comics Day, taking place today and tomorrow, Kickstarter are making their free anthology The Worlds Of Kickstarter Comics available for free, in lieu of its planned debut at TCAF, and you can grab a copy if you sign up to their mailing list.
• And there came a day unlike any other, when earth's mightiest artists were united against a common threat of boredom. On that day Pizza Island was born, and now, during our time of need - it returns - so, welcome back Julia Wertz, Sarah Glidden, Karen Sneider, Lisa Hanawalt, Domitille Collardey, Kate Beaton, and Meredith Gran.
• Both ShortBox and Silver Sprocket continue to release items from their back-catalogue in a pay-what-you-want capacity for digital copies, so now’s a good time to check out their wares, and Avery Hill Publishing have made their back-catalogue available digitally via Gumroad.
• Susie Cagle, reporting for The Guardian, brings a series of illustrated interviews with essential workers in America's food supply chain, highlighting the challenges they're facing in the pandemic, in their own words.
• Leslie Stein attempts to avoid naming that which must not be named.
That’s how I was raised, and I turned out TV… This week’s recommended watching.
• Fantagraphics once more surrendered control of their Instagram page for 24 hours, this time around placing Katie Skelly in charge to show viewers around her work space, and also show her favourite Crepax pictures, as you’d expect. (Katie’s highlights start after Charles Forsman’s)
• WonderCon@Home has begun, and is bringing virtual content to the world in the absence of its 2020 edition, due to COVID-19, with an in-conversation event between Christina ‘Steenz’ Stewart and Trung ‘Trungle’ Le Nguyen, and a panel discussion of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s work to support those in financial need during the pandemic.
• There are more cartoonist dispatches from The Center for Cartoon Studies this week, as James Sturm talks to Charles Forsman about how being a self-employed artist prepared him for the pandemic, and the oddities of streaming to a virtual audience.
• Drawn and Quarterly’s At Home series continued last week, with Disa Wallander taking over their instagram account, answering audience questions about her work, and her new book Becoming Horses.
• Joe Q’s warm-up welcomed Jimmy P(almiotti) for a chat, covering the realities of the work-for-hire industry, and moving into crowd-funding for creator-owned work; talked to Dan Panosian about how a career in art is hard work; and Ryan Stegman joined in the fun to both talk Venom and draw Venom.
• Over at The Drawl, Jason Latour continues his conversation with Mahmud Asrar, as they talk Conan (the Barbarian, not O’Brien), and there is a return of the series’ nemesis: A Squirrel.
• Noah van Sciver has been checking in with some more cartoonists during quarantine, as Nina Bunjevac discusses making money from comics, and provides some sick burns on Noah’s social media posting; Craig Thompson meets Noah for the first time via the medium of video chat to talk about the essence of cartooning, spontaneity; and Zak Sally talks about relative concentration levels during the pandemic, maintaining a work-life balance, choosing gigantic paper for a new project, and there's some Twilight Zone chat.
• If you’re asking yourself “I wonder if Cartoonist Kayfabe have continued to stream new content this week?” then wonder no more, because they have, and this week bring us videos on The Ad Zine, Wizard #38, Trashman, Scout #1 and an interview with creator Tim Truman about his Eclipse work and more.
• AdvoCATES Book Club has a couple of new episodes up, as Donny Cates and Megan Hutchinson check out Batman: The Black Mirror, Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, My Boyfriend is a Bear, and the mutant event epic House of M.
• Drawn to the Shop continues, and this week Tyler Crook is talking to the gang at Four Color Fantasies in Virginia, and drawing my personal lawyerly inspiration, Two-Face.
• Anthony Marques and Fernando Ruiz have another interview up for The Kubert School, this time around talking to Billy Tucci about the relative merits of crowdfunding platforms, the joys of owning your work, and more.
• Marc Evanier has joined the ranks of YouTube streamers, and his first live-record is a doozy - talking to Sergio Aragonés about continuing to work during the pandemic, loving crowd scenes, and a kings ransom in anecdotes about his career and MAD Magazine.
• London's Cartoon Museum checks in with cartoonist Martin Rowson about the changes to life (or not) for an illustrator during lockdown, and the importance of the pen during times of strife.
• The Original Drink and Draw Social Club welcomes Walter Simonson onto their stream this week, for a chat about his career, and escaping from the 'death sentence' of science fiction comics.
That thing you do… This week’s easy-listening.
• Comic Books are Burning in Hell is back with a new episode, and this time around the gang are talking quarantine comfort-reads and the future of retail during this difficult time.
• 2000 AD’s Lockdown Tapes continue, as MOLCH-R talks to Hilary Barta about working on British and US humor comics, and Brian Bolland (!!!) about his work in comics and the ‘British Invasion’ of American comics in the 80s.
• A volume warning on this week’s episode of Publisher’s Weekly’s More to Come, because the sound is completely blown out on the opening stinger (around 10 seconds), and I don’t want you to have a heart attack (like I almost did) if you decide to listen - this week the team is discussing everything distro in the face of the DC/Diamond dust-up, which will presumably go on until the heat death of the universe now.
• There are fresh installments of The Virtual Memory Show’s COVID-19 Sessions as Gil Roth talks to Kriota Willberg about working during the pandemic, Ken Krimstein about mitigating the difficulties of social distancing by having a book to finish, and Sylvia Nickerson discusses how the postponement of her artist residency has affected her work.
• AIPT’s Comics Podcast returns, as David Brooke and Forrest Hollingsworth discuss Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing, and recent comics industry news.
• ShelfDust’s latest Presents installment is here, and this week Matt Lune is joined by Graeme McMillan to talk about (one of my enduring fave comfort reads) Grant Morrison, Howard Porter, et al’s JLA #1.
• David Harper welcomes Ed Brubaker to this week’s episode of Off Panel, as they talk about his new series, Friday, and the flexibility that digital publishing affords creators, as well as what’s next for him and his frequent collaborator, Sean Phillips.
• Canadaland has a check-in with cartoonist Kate Beaton, as Jesse Brown talks to her about living in out in the wilds of rural Canada.
• Another bumper week for John Siuntres and Word Balloon, as he welcomes to the show Archie Comics’ Alex Segura, First Second’s Marc Siegel, Geoff Johns, Alan Burnett, Dan DiDio, and Matt Fraction. Phew!
• Multiversity's Robots From Tomorrow has a new episode this week, as host Greg Matiasevich talks to Joshua Dysart about his career, and the patron saint of injuring oneself while looking cool, Jackie Chan.
• Viz' Shonen Jump podcast has a special women in anime and manga episode this week, featuring host Jennifer LeBlanc and members of the Viz production and sales team offering advice on how to break into the industry and what their various roles entail.
• A combination of words that I did not expect to be writing this week, but Highlander: The Series star, and founder of the Peace Fund charitable organization, Adrian Paul, has launched a new podcast - The Hollywood Experience - and his first guest is none other than Chris Claremont.
• NPR brings a short, but timely, piece on the history of depicting diseases through cartoons, and why that legacy endures today.
• Comics adjacent, but musician and graphic novelist Kid Koala has taken his Music To Draw To sessions online, and you can stream them now, if you’re looking for tuneful accompaniment while working.
Outside a new day is dawning… This week’s links for younger readers.
• Yuko Shimizu has a new drawing challenge that artists of all abilities can take part in, this time asking budding illustrators to draw their quarantine window.
• The Kubert School had another weekend Sketch Session as Lee Weeks took over teaching responsibilities and gave a lesson in drawing shapes and light sources to depict the ultimate subject - Batman.
• Meanwhile, on the other side of the Big 2 divide, Marcus To hosted a How To Draw session looking at the anatomy involved in sketching the whiniest child of the atom - Scott Summers.
• For younger readers who are hungry for a new favorite series to get their teeth into, Brigid Alverson has compiled a list of kids’ graphic novels to look out for this year, and a similar list of non-fiction comics coming soon.
• Comix Experience has a couple of new editions of the Kids GN-of-the-Month Club, and April sees Tait Howard joining host Brian Hibbs to talk about his latest book, The Sunken Tower, while a pre-pandemic episode from December welcomed editor Robyn Chapman for a talk about how comics are made.
• FirstSecond’s SketchSchool continues its curriculum, and this week it’s the turn of Graham Anable drawing his characters Peter and Ernesto, and then digitally colouring them.
• The Beat have another graphic novel study guide for younger readers, and this week Arpad Okay takes us through Thom Pico and Karensac's Aster and the Accidental Magic, translated by Anne and Owen Smith.
• Sunday Haha starts this Sunday, and will deliver free kids comics to your email every week, with the first edition including work by Jarrett Lerner, Jen de Oliveira, Lark Pien, Meggie Ramm, Dave Roman, Mika Song, and Aron Nels Steinke - you can sign up to receive it on their website now.
The links, once again, have come to an end, and will return in 7 calendar days. I hope they provide a nice distraction, if needed, to everyday life at the moment.
In the meantime, as always, stay well, stay home, be kind.