We hit the Losing My Edge period of the lockdown this week at Stately Burscough Manor, as I took LCD Soundsystem’s advice, and bought a synthesiser and an arpeggiator, to pass the quaran-time.
It’s enjoyably relaxing to noodle around with breakbeat sequences in isolation, but I don’t think I’ll be worrying SL2 anytime soon. Hey, you know what else are enjoyably relaxing? This week’s links, which you can find below.
Let me have my toaster and TV… This week’s news.
• We all got to hear the sound of inevitability, as San Diego Comic Con officially cancelled this year’s edition, the first time they’ve taken this step in the 50 year history of the event. You can expect some online events to take place in its stead, including this year’s Will Eisner Industry Awards ceremony.
• In other awards news, the LA Times’ Book Prize winners have been announced, with Eleanor Davis’ The Hard Tomorrow winning the graphic novel category; Pop Culture Classroom have announced the winners of this year’s Excellence in Graphic Literature Awards; and the longlists for this year’s Comedy Women in Print Prize are now available, including the category for ‘humorous graphic novel authors’.
• It was an… eventful week, following a series of already eventful weeks, for the direct market, and there’s a round-up of the news on this front as it happened in its own section below, but if you’d like a quick surface-level recap then Sam Thielman has a decent one at The Guardian.
• Penn State University Press have launched a new graphic novel imprint, Graphic Mundi, and are soliciting for (donated, hm) submissions to their first publication - a COVID-19-focused anthology, in order to “draw out of this mess something meaningful and reaffirming”, with net proceeds going to support creators and retailers in need.
• As National Library Week brings another round-up of the previous year’s most banned and challenged books, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund has brought together a number of resources on tackling identity censorship, and is promoting these with #DontBanMe on social media.
• The Center for Cartoon Studies have taken this year’s series of summer workshops online (for obvious reasons), and you can sign up now for courses taking place in June through August, with some great teachers involved.
• Continuing the This Week’s Links, Inc. promise to you, the reader, that each installment will include at least one auction-focused story, I am very pleased to inform you that some of Al Jaffee’s classic Mad Magazine artwork will soon be going up on the block; and Sotheby's have announced 'Manga', a selling exhibition of cells and drawings from 'popular animation series' out of their Hong Kong gallery.
• Recent publisher donations to the Book Industry Charitable Fund from Oni-Lion Forge and DC have been combined into the ComicBook United Fund, which stores can apply to for financial aid, while the US legislature is attempting to ensure that small businesses are able to access the next round of financial aid packages, following depletion of the relevant funds earlier this month.
• Following on the heels of #Comics4Creators, which took place last week, and appeared to raise a big chunk of change for the Book Industry Charitable Foundation, albeit in a slightly chaotic fashion (more on that below), Canada’s Comics Legends Legal Defense Fund have expanded their work to supporting stores and creators, and are running their own online auction fundraiser - #Canucks4Comics.
• Elsewhere in the Commonwealth, the UK Comics Laureate, Hannah Berry, has launched a creator survey, in order to encourage sustainable growth of the ever-growing scene, and UK-based creators can take the (anonymous) survey here.
• Koyama Press have been showcasing another recipient of their Provides program of grant funding, this time looking at 2018 awardees Chloë Lum and Yannick Desranleau and the video installation they produced, What Do Stones Smell Like In The Forest, as well as saying ‘thank you’ to some of the people who’ve supported the Press’ work in the past.
• Comics bid farewell to industry veteran Gene Deitch, following his passing last week aged 95 - David Gerstein takes a look back at his life and career, here at TCJ, and there's also an interview from the archives with Deitch and his sons talking to Gary Groth about their work and family dynamic
Closed systems tend to maximize entropy… COVID-19 Direct Market Upheaval.
[I've given this item its own section, because things got convoluted, and ended up looking like a David Mamet script - Clark]
• Apparently taking Diamond Distribution’s decision to hold payments from vendors as a termination of the exclusive contract they were party to, DC this week made good on their promise to implement alternative comics delivery streams, stating that shipping of their periodicals would resume on April 28th 2020;
• This new distribution system was reported to involve two new partners, Lunar Distribution and UCS Comic Distributors, which were then found to be operated by Discount Comic Book Service and Midtown Comics, respectively;
• Diamond responded to DC’s announcement with a statement of their own in support of the comics industry in general, as they target a resumption of business date of “late-May” (despite the majority of publishers having already decided to shuffle their new release schedules to autumn and the furloughing of employees), followed by a second statement as to their involvement with DC comics shipments, following the publisher’s cancellation of all solicits from early- to mid-April;
• DC also announced the expansion of their digital comics line, suggesting a full-steam-ahead approach in the face of economic slowdown, perhaps banking on captive audiences for those currently undergoing government-mandated lockdowns, or a sign of bigger changes afoot;
• The reactions to the above were mixed, at best, with individuals viewing this as either the end of the publisher, or exactly what they needed during this period of upheaval (note to US commentators from a Brit: please stop quoting Churchill, it’s weird), averaging out to a fairly hostile reaction from retailers whose stores would still be functionally inoperable during the time frame DC expects to restart shipments, despite returns being available during this period, probably due to the utilization two of the biggest competitors to many US brick-and-mortar shops and online retailers, if the supply chain would even reach them;
• Positive noises were made in some quarters, regarding DC’s decision not to attempt to utilize newly-formed distribution start-ups, instead partnering with established operators in the field, but a pandemic is a difficult time to implement novel systems, and these can still completely collapse, even at the best of times, as we’ve seen in the UK.
We risk sanity for moments of temporary enlightenment… This week’s reviews.
• Robert Kirby reviews the pain and trauma of Lance Ward’s autobiographical Flop Sweat Number 1.
• Leonard Pierce reviews Andy Warner’s memoir of confronting the chaos in the world, Spring Rain.
• Matt Seneca reviews the haunting cyberpunk of Karissa Sakumoto’s Procyon II.
• Rory Wilding reviews Gerry Duggan, Michele Bandini, et al’s entry into the brave new world of Mutants currently bubbling away at Marvel, Marauders volume 1; and the magical mythos of Tini Howard, Marcus To, et al’s Excalibur volume 1.
• Nathan Simmons reviews the return of Archie Comics’ wayward Wiccan in Kelly Thompson, Veronica Fish, Andy Fish, et al’s Sabrina: Something Wicked #1.
• Christopher Franey reviews the first comic that DC ever produced, just in time for their going under some fairly seismic changes, with New Fun Comics #1.
• Robert Secundus dives into a dissection of epistemological horror while reviewing Jeff Loveness, Lisandro Estherren, et al’s Strange Skies Over East Berlin.
• Frankie Sciulla looks back at what worked (and what didn’t) with DC’s Dark Knights: Metal, ahead of the next big event, Dark Knights: Death Metal.
• Rebecca Burke reviews Jurga Vilé and Lina Itagaki’s ‘unflinchingly sincere’ graphic memoir, Siberian Haiku.
• Holly Raidl reviews Axelle Lenoir’s depiction of the long summers of youth in Camp Spirit.
• Tom Murphy reviews the beginning of Kieron Gillen, Dan Mora, et al’s modernist Arthurian tale, Once & Future volume 1.
John Seven reviews the breakdown of reality at the core of Kevin Mutch’s The Rough Pearl.
Four Color Apocalypse
Ryan C reviews:
• The chaotic collage of Mark Laliberte’s Explosive Comic;
• The admirable ongoing absence of fucks to give in Casanova Nobody Frankenstein’s eight installment of the Tad Martin series, Tears of the Leather Bound Saints.
• The masterful pacing of Lance Ward's Flop Sweat #1.
• The depth and complexity of Lex Rocket's Mud Thief volume 1.
House to Astonish
Paul O’Brien hits a bump in the X-road, as he looks back at Bryan Hill, Szymon Kudranski, et al’s truncated tale, Fallen Angels #1-6.
Angelica Frey reviews the visual poetry of Ephameron’s memoir of her father’s battle with dementia, Us Two Together.
LA Review of Books
Paul Morton explores the public perception and history of romance comics, and reviews Return to Romance: The Strange Love Stories of Ogden Whitney, a new collection edited by Dan Nadel and Frank Santoro.
Library Journal [starred reviews]
• Douglas Rednour reviews Scott MacGregor and Gary Dumm’s graphic retelling of the 1916 Waterworks Tunnel disaster, Fire on the Water.
• Thomas L. Batten reviews Garth Ennis, PJ Holden, et al’s ‘tribute to little-known heroes’, The Stringbags.
Illogical Volume returns with some bitesize comic reviews (and dining pairings) and takes a look at Sophie B’s Last Orders; Jem Milton’s Magical Grill; Ales Kot, Andre Lima Araujo, et al’s Generation Gone #1; and James Stokoe’s Sobek.
• Kate Kosturski reviews Sebastian Jones, Amandla Stenberg, Darrell May, et al’s continuing elven epic, Niobe: She is Life #1.
• Joe Skonce looks back on Bill Willingham, Neil Edwards, et al’s Asgardian American adventure, Warriors Three #1-4: Dog Day Afternoon.
• There's a journey back to Image's glorious days of excess as Gustavo Lodi reviews Sam Keith et al's The Maxx #1-4; Gregory Ellner reviews Neil Gaiman, Greg Capullo, et al's Angela #1-3; Matthew Blair reviews Rob Liefeld et al's Youngblood #1; Robbie Pleasant reviews Jim Lee, Brandon Choi, et al's Gen13 #0-2; Alexander Jones reviews Jim Lee, Brandon Choi, et al's WildC.A.T.s #1; and Luke Cornelius reviews Rob Liefeld, et al's Prophet #1.
• David Pepose reviews the supernatural spectacle of Sina Grace, Siobhan Keenan, et al’s Ghosted in LA volume 1; the refreshing normalcy of Robert Venditti, Paul Pelletier, et al’s Superman: Man of Tomorrow #1; and the fishy elements of Steve Orlando, Daniel Sampere, et al's Aquaman: Deep Dives.
• Pierce Lydon reviews Ed Brubaker, Marcos Martin and Muntsa Vicente’s new ‘post-YA’ digital comic, Friday #1.
• Justin Partridge reviews Alex de Campi, Devaki Neogi, et al’s horror scifi take on the world’s greatest pop act, Josie and the Pussycats In Space.
• Kat Calamia reviews Sweeney Boo, Joanna Lafuente, et al’s tale of body dysmoprhia and self-worth, Eat, and Love Yourself.
Etelka Lehoczky reviews the uncanny science fiction mythology of Bishakh Som’s Apsara Engine.
New York Times
• Ben Passmore has an illustrated look back at Ursula K. Le Guin’s science fiction novella about white colonialism, The Word For World Is Forest.
• Hillary Chute reviews a pair of ‘comics that stare into the face of terror and loneliness’, looking at Tian Veasna’s Year of the Rabbit, and Yoshiharu Tsuge’s The Man Without Talent (translated by Ryan Holmberg).
Have capsule reviews of:
• Kaori Tsurutani's tale of inter-generational friendship, Bl Metamorphosis volume 1, translated by Jocelyne Allen.
• Julian Voloj's tribute to Clayton Patterson, Clayton: Godfather of Lower East Side Documentary.
• Cassandra Callin's absurdist slice-of-life (the now somewhat unfortunately titled), I Left The House Today.
• Henry McCausland's uncanny marathon, Eight-Lane Runaways.
• Mike Hawthorne's graphic novel memoir, Happiness Will Follow.
• Alex Hoffman reviews Makoto Hagino’s story of self-discovery and friendship, A Tropical Fish Yearns for Snow volumes 1 & 2.
• Daniel Elkin reviews the apocalyptic juxtaposition of Inio Asano’s Dead Dead Demon’s Dededede Destruction volume 1, translated by John Werry.
• Kayleigh Hearn reviews seventies shojo manga sensation, Riyoko Ikeda’s The Rose of Versailles volume 1, translated by Mari Morimoto.
Women Write About Comics
• Paulina Przystupa dips into the deep well of Kodansha’s manga sales available at the moment, and reviews a trio of new purchases, including Yukito Kishiro’s Battle Angel Alita volume 1, Takumi Ishida’s Kakafukaka volume 1, and Haruko Kumota’s Descending Stories volume 1.
• Masha Zhdanova reviews Kaito’s poignant slice of life manga, Blue Flag.
• Claire Napier reviews the breathless pace of Leah Williams, Carlos Gómez, et al’s (now on COVID-19 related hiatus) The Amazing Mary Jane #6.
The answer is in clear view… This week’s interviews.
• Cynthia Rose continues the Art in Quarantine series of interviews, this time checking in with Brecht Evens about working during the pandemic, as well as to his American publisher about bringing new books to market in chaotic times.
• Keith Silva has another episode of Retail Therapy, interviewing Comic Book Hideout’s Glynnes Pruett about how she’s coping with her store being closed, and the shift to online retail.
• Chris Hassan spends another X-Men Monday talking all things mutants with artist David Nakayama.
Mark O’Keefe chats with Declan Shalvey and Gavin Fullerton about their upcoming Irish crime comic, Bog Bodies, and their collaborative process.
• As new digital manga app Mangamo arrives on the market, Rob Salkowitz interviews its founder and CEO, Buddy Marini, about launching a new app, and attempting to bring readers of pirated material over to the legal side of manga fandom.
• Josh Weiss talks to Ed Brubaker and Marco Martin about their new digital comics series, Friday.
Given the rather (ahem) chaotic nature of this week’s #Creators4Comics auctions on Twitter, there are a couple of pieces this week attempting to get to the bottom of how it all works, and first up we have Milton Griepp talking to members of the Book Industry Charitable Foundation about their operations.
Douglas Rednour interviews Scott Chantler about his new graphic biography of one of the greats of the Jazz Age, Bix.
Brian Salvatore follows up the completion of his recent re-read of 00s DC series Hourman by talking to writer Tom Peyer about the comics’ construction, and what worked/didn’t work.
• Talk to Ben Argon about his murine exploration of the work of Jean-Paul Sartre, The Labyrinth.
• Lan Pitts talks to Todd McFarlane about finding more time to create art during the pandemic, and the evolution of his style.
Petra Mayer talks to cartoonist Tom Gauld about his work in the field of science comics, and the inspirations he draws from.
David Harper has made a number of recent articles on SKTCHD free-to-read, including an interview with Books With Pictures’ Katie Proctor about how COVID-19 is affecting retailers, the realities of using ComicHub, and the recent upheaval in the direct market; as well as a wider discussion with a variety of retailers on how they’re coping in the face of the pandemic.
Mike Avila talks to Jim Starlin about the return of Dreadstar and his return to drawing after injuring his hand.
#ReadAboutComicsStayHome… This week’s features and long-reads.
• Here at TCJ, Robert Elder takes a look at Steve Ditko’s original artwork for Amazing Fantasy #15, which introduced the world to Spider-Man, and now resides in the Library of Congress, and takes a deep-dive into the contentious origins of everyone’s favourite webhead. Thwip.
• Also here at TCJ, Mark Dery explores the life and work of Edward Gorey, and what debt (if any) he owed to the world of comics, following the recent publication of The Angel, The Automobilist, and Eighteen Others, a collection of illustrations discovered after his death.
• Print Magazine is running a series of CoviDiaries, checking in with artists and designers as the pandemic progresses, including this from Gary Panter, about the point of art - the act of making it.
• Joe McCulloch brings us another of his essays from the vault, this week unlocking an updated version of 2015’s I Was Saved… From My Own Life!, an examination of the work of Kevin Huizenga’s Glenn Ganges stories, originally published in Drawn & Quarterly: Twenty-five years of contemporary cartooning, comics, and graphic novels.
• ShelfDust has new entries in a number of its ongoing series up this week, including Steve Foxe’s look back at the witchiest of the Seven Soldiers of Victory, Klarion #4; and Charlotte Finn’s examination of her favourite Astro City story as A Year in the Big City reaches issue 16.
• Mike Avila looks back at the parallels between the 70s Captain America storyline Secret Empire and the political shake-up that the US was going through at the time.
• Over at 13th Dimension, Dan Greenfield previews some of the classic Mad Magazine comics that will be appearing in the next issue from Drucker, Aragones, and Wood, alongside new material from the Usual Gang of Idiots.
• As is now traditional when a new piece of media that has similar themes to Robert Chambers’ King in Yellow comes along, it’s time to hold Panel Syndicate’s new offering up and view it through the lens of True Detective, so take it away, Aaron Fentress.
• Drew Bradley brings us a timely look back at the comics markets of the 60s, 70s, and 90s, while the contemporary industry goes through a tricky patch.
• Sara Century looks past the troubles that the New Mutants film is going through, instead focusing on the comics, and one of its founding members, Karma.
• This week’s second look into the chaotic fundraising of #Creators4Comics sees Kat Overland dive into where the money actually goes now the auctions have ended, which should hopefully reassure any casual observers who were (like me) vaguely confused by the anarchic nature of it all.
• Over at The Washington Post, Michael Cavna covers St Louis cartoonist Steenz taking over the daily strip Heart of the City, and Chicago’s Bianca Xunise joining the Six Chix team, in the context of the predominance of white male creators in America’s daily comics beat.
• Tomer Hanuka provides this week’s cover for The New Yorker and breaks down his inspiration for the illustration, the 7pm communal celebration of essential workers in New York City.
• At a time when direct market linked publishers are undergoing a period of upheaval, K. Thor Jensen takes an apt look back at how behind-the-scenes disruption can be the catalyst for line-wide reboots.
• AIPT continue their variant editions of Judging by the Cover, with a selection of the team’s favourite covers from comics past.
• Not necessarily comics-focused, but ICv2 has a handy article from Dragon’s Lair’s David Wheeler about how one can go about negotiating with landlords during the COVID-19 pandemic.
• As US states forge new partnerships over pandemic relief, Graeme McMillan looks at the parallels this has with the world of Judge Dredd.
• Laura Grafton and Andrew Deman take to The Middle Spaces to examine the sexuality of Harley Quinn, as displayed on the page and in the audience's perception.
• The spring issue of Herizons is free-to-read right now, and with it is Nyala Ali's exploration of feminism in Julie Doucet's work (on pages 22-25).
#ReadComicsStayHome… This week’s comics offerings from the web.
• There’s a new Cartoonist’s Diary on TCJ this week, as Tim Hamilton brings us a series of ‘semi-reliable’ autobiographical tales from the much more innocent time (although cf. the behavior of his neighbor, Ed) of the 1990s.
• The Paris Review has a preview of Yoshiharu Tsuge’s The Phony Warrior, taken from the new collection of his work, The Swamp, translated by Ryan Holmberg.
• The Nib continues its comics coverage of the current pandemic, as Seth Tobocman shows what we do and do not know, Kendra Wells shines a light on the realities of bettering one’s self during times of crisis, and Joey Alison Sayers has Big Plans.
• Peter Kuper channels Winsor McCay’s Little Sammy Sneeze for the COVID-19 fake-news era, with Little Donald’s Sneeze.
• Speaking of fake-news, NPR have re-released a primer on how to filter misinformation, which has become rampant during this pandemic, and have a comic on the subject by Connie Hanzhang Jin to accompany it.
• Also at NPR, Malaka Gharib has a new comic, reporting on the difficulties faced by aid workers in the face of COVID-19, and the help they’re bringing to communities.
• The Daily Cartoonist’s DD Cregg reminds us that, should you have run out of new comics to read, the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum have digitised representations of nearly all their 3 million piece back catalogue.
• ShortBox (which, full disclosure, I briefly worked on in the past) have a new curated comics selection up for grabs right now, and Zainab Akhtar has made the move to crowd-funding for this edition, hitting the goal in just over a day, and with pledges being taken for the next month.
• Walter Scott predicts the post-pandemic art that is to come, and may gods have mercy on us all.
• Lisa Hanawalt breaks down the simmering tension of period romantic dramas, which I personally only watch for the articles, but am finding myself consuming more of than usual, during social distancing times.
• As another Earth Day came and went, Sophie Yanow made her comic What is a Glacier? free-to-read, looking at climate change through the lens of grief, anxiety, endings, and beginnings.
• Meanwhile, National Cartoonists' Society President, Jason Chatfield, recently contracted COVID-19 and produced a comic diary of his experiences, which is probably best not to read while eating, just FYI.
When the world crashes into my living room… This week’s recommended watching.
• Following last week’s inaugural First Second Comics Relief virtual festival, you can now watch the streams from the event, via their Facebook page.
• On a similar note, Essential Sequential have been running Essential Sequestered for the last few weeks, via their Facebook page, bringing together a number of comic artists for chats and drawing, so if you’re looking for some long-form distractions this weekend then they’ve got you covered.
• Cartoonist Kayfabe had another full week of video #content as they took a look at In The Studio, Jack Kirby’s take on 2001 A Space Odyssey, and American Flagg, before speaking to Howard Chaykin.
• Comix Experience’s GN-of-the-month club convened for April, to talk with Ram V and Anand RK to talk about their work, including their graphic novel (and focus for this month’s episode), Grafity’s Wall; and also released a video from December 2019’s edition, as (pre-quarantine) Darcy Van Poelgeest and Ian Bertram talk about their work, and their book Little Bird: The Fight for Elder’s Hope.
• Yallwest’s virtual edition Yallstayhome takes place this weekend, and has (in amongst the prose-focused programming) a panel on DC’s YA books, Rainbow Rowell and Mariko Tamaki in-conversation, and Ryan North and Shannon Hale collaborating on a one-page comic in real-time.
• Drawn to the Shop continued its virtual tour of comic stores of the US, and this time Tyler Crook dropped in on Four Corners Comics and Games, to talk to them about life in retail, how they’re coping during the pandemic, and also draw (objectively) the best of the New Gods, Big Barda.
• John Martz has, with perfect timing, as we all need little bursts of joy in our day, resurrected Drawn, nearly 7 years after it went on hiatus, and is showcasing new/old/good animated shorts on there every day.
• Noah Van Sciver has joined the ranks of comics YouTubers, and has opened his channel in strong form, interviewing Box Brown, John Porcellino, and Joseph Remnant.
• Animator Natalie Nourigat has brought together some handy tips and tricks regarding figure drawing, for those using any pandemic down-time to improve their artistic skills.
• Joe Q continues his morning warm-ups and talks to Kevin Smith about, well, they talk about potatoes a fair bit; and then part two is a deep dive into everyone’s favourite catholic crime-fighter, Daredevil.
• The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund celebrated National Library Week by hosting an in-conversation event on Thursday between Mariko Tamaki and Gene Luen Yang, and you can find archives of their webinar series on their website.
• Drawn & Quarterly are hosting another At Home With… takeover of their Instagram, this time with Disa Wallander, who’ll be taking viewers through her new book Becoming Horses this afternoon.
• Fantagraphics also handed over their Instagram account this week, as Charles Forsman took charge, answering viewer questions, and interviewing Julia Gfrörer, Ben Marra, TEOTFW’s Jess Barden, Michel Fiffe, and Josh Simmons, as well as introducing everyone to his cats Oscar and Bruce.
• The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum is hosting a series of online events, bringing viewers a conversation with artist John Kascht on caricaturing; and a panel discussion between Prof Rebecca Wanzo and cartoonists Bianca Xunise and Barbara Brandon-Croft on African-American comic art and belonging.
• The Center for Cartoon Studies brings us another dispatch, and this time James Sturm is checking in with cartoonist Roz Chast about the difficulty in finding humour during a pandemic.
• The Drawl returns as Jason Latour talks to Mahmud Asrar about his career, also featuring: a disruptive squirrel.
• The Kubert School have another batch of live episodes, as hosts Anthony Marques and Fernando Ruiz talk to illustrator, art director, and editor Mark Chiarello about his career, including advice given to him by Archie Goodwin, and disagreements with Joe Kubert; interview artist Shane Davis about his work, and how comic publisher scuffles are similar to the world of wrestling; and Anthony Marques has a solo chat with Klaus Janson, talking about continuing to work during the pandemic, getting started in comics, and showing work to editors.
• SYFY Wire’s Mike Avila is going Behind the Panel again this week, talking to G. Willow Wilson about Wonder Woman, Sandman, and keeping sane during a pandemic through baking.
• SKTCHD have another edition of Off Panel Live coming up tomorrow (Saturday 25th April), as David Harper talks to Sam Humphries, presumably with some congratulations about the success of #Creators4Comics.
Kicking the new k-nowledge… This week’s easy-listening.
• There’s a new episode of AIPT’s comics podcast, with guest Mark Russell talking about his work with hosts David Brooke and Forrest Hollingsworth, as well as the latest news during a hectic time for comics.
• Rumble with Michael Moore had a comics flavour last week, as the documentarian/podcast host talked to satirical cartoonist Tom Tomorrow.
• Randy Cohen’s podcast Person Place Thing similarly had a comics guest earlier this month, as he spoke to cartoonist Sarah Boxer about a person, place, and thing important to her.
• Multiversity Comics’ Robots From Tomorrow isn’t letting a lack of new periodicals slow them down, as they instead dive into pull lists of the past to bring some (potentially) new reading material to listeners waiting for the direct market to return in… whatever form it ends up in, during this time of metamorphosis.
• SILENCE! returns to its regular programming, following last episode’s substitution of the Dear Listener for co-host The Beast Must Die, except this time Gary Lactus is recording from his car, while they talk about recent comics and not-so-recent comics; and then they quickly diverge from regular programming again as TBMD reads from his favorite graphic novel introductions.
• In the first of a Heidi MacDonald double-feature, she joined Matt Lune for the ShelfDust Presents podcast, talking about Planetary #1 - “First name The, second name Drummer.”
• Heidi then joined David Harper on the Off Panel podcast to talk through the absolute bedlam that ensued last week with DC’s decision to implement their own comics distribution plan.
• Heidi didn’t appear on last week’s episode of Publisher’s Weekly’s More To Come, but they did have a guest appearance from Gene Luen Yang, who spoke about his new graphic novel, Dragon Hoops.
• The Virtual Memories Show had some more COVID Check-Ins this week, with host Gil Roth talking to comics creator Dean Haspiel about how he’s getting on in this time of social distancing; cartoonist Emily Flake about moving live events to online venues, and the difficulty in finding jokes for strips that aren’t just about hoarding toilet paper; and catches up with Summer Pierre about balancing working and parenting, diary comics, and National Poetry Month (which we're now approaching the end of).
• For last week’s Comic Lab podcast, hosts Brad Guigar and Dave Kellett ran a special ‘comics under quarantine’ edition looking at working from home and crowdfunding in times of crisis; and this week welcome Gale Galligan in to talk about her work in the YA market, and making mini comics.
A kid can learn more in an airport than in any school… This week’s links for younger readers.
• The Kubert School had another edition of Saturday Kids Class, this time welcoming artist Sergio Carriello onto the stream to teach viewers how to draw everyone’s favourite arachnid adventurer, Spider-Man.
• DC’s Kids Camp continues its output of creative resources for younger comic makers, and this week they’ve got how-to-draw videos looking at figures from Victoria Ying and Gretel Lusky, with a wide selection of other activity videos over on their YouTube channel.
• Daryl Seitchik and Dan Nott are going to be teaching virtual comics classes for kids aged 9-12 every Tuesday afternoon, as part of The Center for Cartoon Studies' online eductional program, where participants can learn cartooning skills and hang out and draw with peers.
• Rosie Knight has put together an instructional article and accompanying video on simple zine making, which just requires a single sheet of paper, some scissors, and a topic of your choosing.
• Lew Stringer is making lemonade from lemons, and has put together a pay-what-you-want digital compilation of his work, while his new comic is delayed by COVID-19.
• Emily Lauer has put together a list of some of the best streaming story-times, for those who’d like a book read to them, while caregivers may be otherwise occupied.
• Cartoon Network have started a new draw-along series over on their Twitch channel, with inaugural host Danny Hynes, artist on Craig of the Creek and Steven Universe, amongst others - starts at around the 25 minute mark.
• As part of The Loft’s Wordplay literary festival, Gene Luen Yang and Minh Lé got together (digitally) to discuss what makes a modern hero.
• Kazu Kibuishi has made all 4 issues of his series Daisy Kutter: The Last Train available for free, as a gift to quarantined readers looking for new stories to dive into.
• My favorite of First Second’s Sketch School series so far, as LeUyen Pham sends in her animated self for this week’s drawing lesson, along with some lovely classical accompaniment.
• Puffin Books have been running regular storytime and draw-along sessions with their authors and illustrators, and you can catch up on the sessions so far on their channel.
• Disney’s animators are passing the time in quarantine with some draw-along lessons on caricaturing, and illustrating characters from Frozen 2, The Jungle Book, and more; so if you’ve finally hit a limit of how many times a youngster can watch their favourite animated films, put ‘em to work drawing their own.
That’s all the links there is - for this week - don’t forget to find some time to relax this weekend, if you can, you’ve got to look out for yourself in these weird times.
Stay well, stay home, be kind.