Posted by Marykate Jasper

This weekend, we’ve seen yet again why it’s crucial to show up in the fight against racism, just like the anti-racist demonstrators in Charlottesville did.

After the Ku Klux Klan reportedly planned to rally in Durham, North Carolina, residents showed up by the hundreds to counter-protest. The Klan never showed up, but hundreds of local residents took to the streets to demonstrate against white supremacy and hate – and to enjoy a dance party.

Meanwhile, in Boston, a so-called “Free Speech Rally” which had originally invited a bunch of white supremacists to speak, was scheduled to take place on Boston Common today. Thousands and thousands of New Englanders showed up to counter-protest, with attendance estimates ranging from 30,00045,000. Meanwhile, only a few dozen people showed up at the “Free Speech” rally, which had a permit for up to 100 attendees.

As you can see from the video, the “free speech” proponents looked small, petty, and foolish. Obviously, this annoyed Trump, who won exactly zero counties in Massachusetts, so he had to tweet something divorced from reality.

(Hi, there were approximately 27 arrests in Boston. Out of 45,000 people.)

These were definitely not the only anti-racist demonstrations this weekend. Groups in New Orleans rallied for the removal of Confederate and Andrew Jackson statues, and demonstrators in Dallas will gather later this evening for an anti-white supremacy march. These are great causes, and I don’t want to downplay the importance of proactive anti-racist rallies. However, I highlighted Durham and Boston because they were specifically organized to counter-protest a fascist/white supremacist rally.

Some thinkers will advise “ignoring” white supremacists and alt-right groups, because “they want a platform” or “they want the attention.” And that’s certainly true when it comes to media coverage. Richard Spencer can’t wait to get his punchable face on television, or spout his ideology to a newspaper. They love any opportunity to win over followers by spreading their garbage.

However, a counter-protest serves to redirect media attention. If you look at the coverage of Boston in particular, very few outlets mentioned the speakers or talking points of the “free speech” contingent. Instead, it was all about the massive counter-protest and its organizers. Suddenly, the message was about resistance and anti-racism, about the counter-protesters and their concerns.

As it says on this image from the Charlottesville candelit vigil, organized as a direct rejection of the torch-wielding racists who were there a few days earlier: “We replaced you.”

(You can tell you’ve stolen the narrative when even racist-in-chief Donald Trump, who obsessively watches the media, wants a belated piece of the feel-good coverage. After disparaging Boston in his police tweet, he then tweeted, “I want to applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. Our country will soon come together as one!” Cool story, bro.)

Counter-protests also help to discredit the newly emboldened far-right, and to make the people targeted by far-right terrorists feel less scared and alone. White supremacists want to claim America as “their” country, as the exclusive provenance of white people. It’s crucial to demonstrate, as they try to grow their movement, that they are vastly outnumbered and widely hated. It’s crucial to show them the joy, solidarity, and life-giving, righteous anger that animates the “social justice warriors” they claim are ruining the world. (Tubas and trombones and dance parties, folks.) Most of all, it is crucial to remind them that the United States does not belong to them – and that the future belongs to their opponents.

(Via USA Today, The Herald SunWBUR, and NPR; image via Shutterstock)

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Posted by Dan Wickline

Here we have the full solicitations for Archie Comics and their Dark Circle imprint for November 2017. This includes a new Betty & Veronica series along with more Riverdale and classic Archie comics series.

Over the centuries, THE SHIELD has battled enemies of the United States—but what happens when she’s not sure who the enemy is? This graphic novel collects THE SHIELD issues 1-4.

Script: Adam Christopher, Chuck Wendig | Art: Drew Johnson, Al Barrionuevo, Greg Scott, Ray Snyder, Kelly Fitzpatrick, Rachel Deering | Cover: David Williams

HEART OF RIVERDALE, Part 3! Reggie Mantle has nowhere to turn now that the whole town holds him responsible for Betty’s fate. Meanwhile, Betty learns just how true and noble one of her friends is!

Script: Mark Waid | Art: Audrey Mok, Kelly Fitzpatrick, Jack Morelli | Archie #25 CVR A Reg: Audrey Mok | Archie #25 CVR B Var: Rafael Albuquerque | Archie #25 CVR C Var: Jen Bartel

NEW ONGOING SERIES! The Archies hit the road—but tour isn’t all it’s cracked up to be! Can they still make some great music? Or will they go broke and make a U-turn for home?

Script: Alex Segura and Matt Rosenberg | Art: Joe Eisma, Matt Herms, Jack Morelli | The Archies #2 CVR A Reg: Greg Smallwood | The Archies #2 CVR B Var: Fiona Staples

Collected for the first time in one graphic novel, BETTY AND VERONICA issues 1-3 by legendary comics creator Adam Hughes!

Script: Adam Hughes | Art: Adam Hughes, Jose Villarrubia, Jack Morelli | Cover: Adam Hughes

NEW ONGOING SERIES! The toughest gang in Riverdale is one you’d least expect: the Vixens, led by Riverdale High’s own Betty and Veronica!

Script: Jamie L. Rotante | Art: Eva Cabrera, Elaina Unger, Rachel Deering | B&V: Vixens #1 CVR A Reg: Eva Cabrera | B&V: Vixens #1 CVR B Var: Robert Hack | B&V: Vixens #1 CVR C Var: Fiona Staples

NEW ONGOING SERIES! As Jughead’s life as a fugitive grows deadlier, Betty and Archie close in—and they’re not alone. Betty’s werewolf hunter relatives’ ruthlessness may spell the end for good ol’ Jug!

Script: Frank Tieri | Art: Pat and Tim Kennedy, Matt Herms, Jack Morelli | Jughead: The Hunger #2 CVR A Reg: Adam Gorham | Jughead: The Hunger #2 CVR B Var: T. Rex

Small town kids get a taste of big city life when the “core four” go to NYC for the weekend. Archie tries to keep up with Veronica’s high society pals, Betty and Jughead worry that their relationship may not survive outside the bubble of their hometown, and Kevin and Cheryl don’t intend to miss out on a day of mischief in the Big Apple…

Script: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa & Various | Art: Thomas Pitilli, Andre Szymanowicz, John Workman | Riverdale #8 CVR A Reg: CW Photo Cover – Betty | Riverdale #8 CVR B Var: CW Photo Cover – Veronica

See how everything led to the CW’s Riverdale TV show with this digest-sized collection featuring stories from our relaunched titles as well as classic Archie stories!

Script: Various | Art: Various | Cover: CW Photo Cover

After Mr. Lodge permanently bans Archie from the mansion, what happens when he finds Archie behind the wheel of his limousine? Plus, part 4 of the connecting variant cover image!

Script: Ty Templeton | Art: Dan Parent, Ty Templeton, Jack Morelli, Andre Szymanowicz | Your Pal Archie #4 CVR A Reg: Dan Parent | Your Pal Archie #4 CVR B Var: Les McClaine

In the BRAND NEW holiday story “Carol Peril,” The gang decides to go caroling for charity — until the blizzard of the century hits!

Script: Dan Parent | Art: Bill Golliher | Cover: Pat and Tim Kennedy, Bob Smith

In the BRAND NEW holiday story “Jingles Jangle,” Jingles the elf loses his holiday powers due to a spell cast by Sugarplum—so his only choice is to take up residence with Archie!

Script: Dan Parent | Art: Bill Galvan | Cover: Pat and Tim Kennedy, Bob Smith

Since 1941, Archie and his perennial teenage friends have entertained the masses. In this sister volume to our best-selling BEST OF ARCHIE series, you’ll journey the 1940s and 1950s and unearth the roots of an American institution.

Script: Various | Art: Various | Cover: George Frese

In the BRAND NEW Christmas story “The LAST Noelle,” Santa’s daughter Noelle wants to experience normal high school life—but if Betty & Veronica interfere, will Santa put them on his naughty list?

Script: Dan Parent | Art: Jeff Shultz | Cover: Bill Galvan, Bob Smith

Betty & Veronica

In the festive BRAND NEW story “All Aboard,” Archie wants to get his parents a model train for their holiday village display—unless his plans get derailed!

Script: Dan Parent | Art: Bill Galvan | Cover: Pat and Tim Kennedy, Bob Smith

Betty & Veronica: Vixens Lead The Archie Comics November 2017 Solicitations


Posted by Marykate Jasper

Donald Trump announced that he and his wife Melania won’t be attending The Kennedy Center Honors – which will be held on December 3 – because they want to allow the “artists to celebrate without any political distraction.” Two of the five honorees – television producer Norman Lear and dancer/choreographer Carmen de Lavallade – had already indicated that they would refuse a White House reception with Trump.

The Kennedy Center chairman and president issued the shadiest statement in response.

“In choosing not to participate in this year’s Honors activities,” reads the statement, “the Administration has graciously signaled its respect for the Kennedy Center and ensures the Honors gala remains a deservingly special moment for the Honorees. We are grateful for this gesture.”

I know the Kennedy Center was trying to keep it classy and frame Trump’s months-early snub as a decision they could respond to graciously. But this is pretty much a sly acknowledgement that Trump degrades any tradition he takes part in, from the Boy Scout Jamboree to space explorationNot attending is the only way he can “signal…respect” for any event, because his very presence is an insult to the dignity, decency, and honor of an organization.

Plus, the Kennedy Center is entirely right. Trump’s absence will ensure a better night for everyone involved. The honorees – dancer/choreographer Carmen de Lavallade, TV producer Norman Lear, rapper LL Cool J, singer Gloria Estefan, and singer Lionel Richie – did not deserve to have their shining night tarnished by a photo op with some misogynist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic white supremacist sympathizer. Now they can celebrate their accomplishments without enduring a man who, given the ethnic makeup of this group, probably hates them.

Trump is no friend to the arts, having proposed eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts and driven his entire Presidential Committee on the Arts and Humanities to resign with a badass letter. Skipping the Kennedy Center Honors is only his latest – and, surely, not his last – conflict with the arts community.

(Via NPR; image via Shutterstock)

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The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—


Posted by Rich Johnston

Mech Cadet Yu #1, an original series about a boy and a giant robot that reteamed Amadeus Cho-creators Greg Pak (Weapon X) and Takeshi Miyazawa (Ms. Marvel) from Boom! Studios, has sold out at the distributor level in its first week. (Though may still be in your local shops, though, if you missed it, along with Mister Miracle #1 and Totally Awesome Hulk #22 — yeah right.)

It was also one of Boom!’s best-reviewed launches of the year. Seems only logical the planned four-issue limited series should be given a “promotion” of sorts. Maybe make it an ongoing series? Word is that’s what Boom plans to do, just in time for issue #2’s final order cut-off deadline on Monday.

I’ve heard retailers are being advised right now, or rather those that have participated in the Boom Studios Retailer Guarantee programme – the successor to their Innovators programme.

Anyway, ongoing Mech Cadet Yu. Something to tide you over while you wait for the next Pacific Rim movie, perhaps?

Issue #2 of this new ongoing series goes on sale on September 13th.

(W) Greg Pak (A/CA) Takeshi Miyazawa
Once a year, giant robots from outer space come to Earth and bond with young cadets from the elite Sky Corps Academy to defend the world from the terrifying aliens known as the Sharg. It’s a great honor to be chosen, but this year…well, the wrong kid was picked.
Greg Pak (Totally Awesome Hulk) and Takeshi Miyazawa (Ms. Marvel) team up for an action-packed adventure perfect for fans of Amadeus Cho and Pacific Rim!In Shops: Aug 02, 2017
SRP: $3.99

(W) Greg Pak (A) Takeshi Miyazawa (CA) Marcus To
It’s Stanford’s first day at school, and he and his mech will have to see if they can keep up with the other students.In Shops: Sep 13, 2017
SRP: $3.99

(W) Greg Pak (A) Takeshi Miyazawa (CA) Marcus To
The cadets are undergoing their most intense training yet, when Park’s mech starts to malfunction with dangerous consequences. In Shops: Oct 18, 2017
SRP: $3.99

‘Mech Cadet Yu’ By Greg Pak And Takeshi Miyazawa Will Be An Ongoing Series


Posted by Rich Johnston

Yesterday, Bleeding Cool featured a story about the cosplayer and adult entertainer Alisa Norris, who attended the white nationalist Charlottesville rally last week with her husband, Jonathon Norris. There seemed to be a very strong disconnect between the characters she portrayed and her relationship with fans, friends, co-workers, and the rest, and this set of beliefs. And people had started to notice.

It also emerged that not only a long standing cosplayer, she was also George Perez‘s model for Supergirl when drawing an issue of the series back in 2012. Specifically #8, a few examples used to illustrate this article. Here she is reading the comic in question.

Norris did not want to talk about the issue when I first spoke to her at the time, but after publication, she agreed to talk to Bleeding Cool. But first she wanted to put a few things straight. She told me,

“First off, it was not a “march”, it was a rally to protest the Monument removal by the racist vice mayor. I meant I was not at the torch march the night before. That video is after the permitted assembly was shut down and we had to walk back to our cars a few miles away.”

That would be a reference to Vice Mayor Wes Bellamy, who recently resigned from the Virginia Board of Education after anti-white tweets of his from eight years ago were brought to light. I pointed out that people seemed to be brandishing white nationalist symbols, including Jonathan and chanting white nationalist slogans. And that Jonathan himself self-identifies as a white nationalist. I asked what degree she was part of that movement:

“I’m not. I was along for the ride. I didn’t know it was anything more than a monument removal protest. I was not chanting, there were many many groups of all kinds.”

I asked if she understood that being along for the ride for a white nationalist demonstration, which was what it clearly turned out to be, might be problematic for some, especially considering her association with Jonathon:

“Yeah, that’s why I didn’t mention it afterwards. I had no clue it was anything so big or so eventful.”

I pointed out that at the time that video was taken, she was with a man chanting, “Jews will not replace us, you will not replace us.” I asked what she would you say to people, her friends, fans, and colleagues for whom that explanation of being “along for the ride” would not enough and would not disassociate her from the marching and the rest of the marchers. She didn’t have an answer for me at the time.

I also stated that even before Bleeding Cool ran anything, there was considerable social media coverage of her situation. That as it stands, she had taken down her Facebook, her Instagram is filling up with accusations of being a Nazi, and her adult entertainment site was taken down by the webmaster. I asked her what was going to happen with her and with Jonathon.

I asked how it made her feel when she saw people chanting anti-Jewish slogans, anti-gay slogans, displaying Nazi symbols, including your partner. Can anyone truly be “along for the ride” with that? Did you consider not doing it anymore or disassociating yourself with what was going on at the time?

I also noted that George Perez has stated she was his model for Supergirl (a famous illegal immigrant superhero character) and that they had had been longtime friends. I noted that she clearly had a diverse set of friends and colleagues, some of whom are clearly upset, and I asked: given that, how could she marry a white nationalist and quite literally stand by him while he made these statements and brandished these symbols, given her other relationships?

I was talking a lot, but Alisa wasn’t answering. She told me:

“I’ll speak in time. I don’t have any more to say right now.”

But today she had more to tell me — answering some questions, and ignoring others.

“They were saying ‘you will not replace us’ and I was not chanting at all. I was holding hands to not be separated and for safety during a terrifying ordeal. That was not a ‘march’ in that video and I didn’t lie. I said I wasn’t at the torch march the night before. I went to the rally Saturday to hear the scheduled speakers. When the rally was shut down and determined to be an ‘unlawful assembly’ before it was even scheduled to begin because of violence breaking out between the counter protestors we were thrown to, we had to walk back to the parking lot 2 miles away. That video was the walk back and not an official march. We were also chanting silly things like ‘Harry Potter isn’t real.'”

All other accounts specified that the crowd were shouting “Jews will not replace us,” alternating with “you will not replace us,” but neither went down well. Alisa had more to tell me:

“Of course there’s a screen grab subtitled with whatever people decided I was saying. I don’t have anything against Jews. I just don’t like seeing American history torn down and I believe in tighter border control for European countries and for America. Come here sure, but do so legally.”

She spoke about some of the consequences:

“And now I’m receiving death threats thanks to you and others who decided they know all about me and who I am. The thing I hate most of all out of this is how confused and hurt my non white and gay friends who have come to me are and having to explain to them what is going on. I don’t care about all the random idiots and strangers hating on me but that has me down. I’ll get through this just fine though and I have plenty of love and support from people who truly know me.”

And she did have some regrets. Not the regrets some might wish her to have, but regrets nevertheless:

“I turned out to be wrong to be anywhere near this event, but you’re also wrong for this. At the same time though I’ve had more outreach and love from all kinds of friends and fans than I have had in a long time. It’s been nice to reconnect with so many people. Put this in one of your articles.”

And I did. I expect I am supposed to note that the poster in question is a black man of her acquaintance. I repeated previous questions about how she reconciles her friendships with being married to a white nationalist and going to a white nationalist rally. I asked why she continued being along for the ride, if she didn’t share such beliefs. I asked if she thought anyone could truly be “along for the ride” to such an event, especially accompanying someone brandishing those images and saying those kind of things. She had a pragmatic answer:

“I was already there, and 12 hours from home. I have friends of all backgrounds because I don’t share the same exact political beliefs of Jonathon. He seems extreme but he has never broken the law or hurt anyone or advocated violence. His beliefs are his own to have.”

I asked if there were people who are or were friends and colleagues of hers who no longer can be, because of Jonathan’s beliefs, she told me:

“Yes, things are bad for me right now in that regard.”

She told me she hadn’t spoken to George Perez in years, but didn’t want to cause him pain or strife, especially knowing his health issues. But I tried to bring it back to the matter in hand and why this situation may have blown up so much for her.

I mentioned that cosplay is often a very welcoming rather than exclusive past-time and, especially the superhero costumes, based on characters often created by American Jewish creators like Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Joe Shuster, Jerry Siegel, and many more. And to see someone dress up as Supergirl, be a model in the comics for Supergirl, and then attend a white nationalist rally sticks in the craw more than anything else. And that right at the beginning, Superman was fighting the KKK — and she attended a rally on the same side as the KKK. That’s the disconnect I think that has caused so much outrage.

Alisa was clearly getting more annoyed and certain tropes seemed to start emerging. She told me:

“There were a couple of KKK members out of thousands. The lying press is labeling every person there a ‘Nazi’.”

I stated that the swastika flags didn’t help. She told me:

“Most flags were American or confederate or white nationalist flags… Of course they only show the swastika… Nazi Germany is dead and doesn’t even have anything to do with what happening today. It was stupid of those protestors to fly swastikas.”

We may have been veering off the point. I didn’t dispute what she was saying, but really didn’t think it mattered, telling her I’d seen a heady mix. The white nationalist logos were far more prevalent, and the slogans as well, but this was still a problem. She told me:

“I don’t stand by anti Semitism.”

Which was nice to hear, but with all the white nationalist symbols and chants, her husband seemed to stand by anti-Semitism — and she was standing by him. People may find it hard to differentiate. And then we got to the hub of the matter. She told me:

“‘Blood and soil’ and ‘you will not replace us’ are about white countries having their populations replaced with mass immigration. It’s wrong what is happening to France, Germany, England, etc. They deserve to exist in their own countries and not be over run and taken over.”

Which, essentially, is pretty much white nationalist through-and-through.

I said that I was English and had never seen it that way — that I was part of a nation that has always had a history of immigration and invasion. The Romans, the Angles, the Saxons, the Normans, the Vikings, etc. And then I asked, when was the USA ever a white country?

That seemed to be it. I found myself Facebook-blocked in mid question. I still had more to ask. Specifically, if she saw a contradiction between that belief and the characters she cosplays as — Supergirl being a classic example of, in essence, an illegal immigrant in America.

Instead, I got Facebook telling me that Alisa wasn’t receiving any more messages from me. To be honest, I’m not sure she ever was.

We Talk To The Supergirl Cosplayer “Along For The Ride” At The White Nationalist Rally In Charlottesville


Posted by Jude Terror

How profitable is it to be a bounty hunter in the DC Comics universe? A Redditor calling himself Marc Specter (or /u/temporal712) set out to find out. His mission: read every single appearance of Jonah Hex, track his earnings and expenses, and combined that data with factors like inflation and rare currency values to figure out how much money Hex made in his career, and how much it’s worth today.

Specter posted the results in a 49 page document on ScribeD, in which he describes his methods:

Now, how does one go about calculating the fictional net worth of a fictional character?Well, like any other net worth, of course. By adding up all the profits and assets, and subtracting all the expenses. Throughout each appearance, I noted when Hex completed a contract and received money or lost supplies that needed to be restocked and/or lost any money.Unlike other financial inquiries, though, it’s significantly harder to find documents to audit when they are over 100 years old, not to mention the fact that Jonah Hex is a fictional character.Hell, most of the contracts Hex took never stated a dollar amount. So how how do we know what Jonah has in assets and profits? We get our answer in Jonah Hex  Vol. 1 #19, where Hex states his standard rate for a contract was $5,000, so any contract that isn’t given a stated amount will be assumed to be $5,000. Assets and their values will be evaluated and added at the final balance, after all appearances.So we have a process for figuring out profits, but what are the expenses for a famous bounty hunter? For starters, Jonah spends a lot of time on his own on the trail. So he needs basic survival supplies like food, coffee, spare pants, and toiletries. He also tends to lose many horses, saddles, and harnesses, mostly to bullets. Hex loses his Colt 45.’s Remington rifles, shotguns, and ammo just as much. Using the prices and wages manuscripts from the National Park Service and theLibrary of the University of Missouri, we can put together an accurate price guide for anytimeJonah loses any of his supplies. Putting those together, you have…

● Resupply: Dried apricots, dried apples, dried figs, dried peaches, beef jerky, coffee, toiletries, spare clothes = $6.67, $128.47 with inflation.

● Saddle Up: good saddle horse, cowboy saddle, harness = $310, $5,971.03 with inflation.

● Lock And Load: Matching ivory Colt .45’s, Shotgun, Repeating Rifle, ammo boxes =$211.50, $4,073.79 with inflation.

● Full Restock: Resupply, Saddle Up, Lock And Load combined = $528.17, $10,173.29with inflation.So anytime these words are put on an issue, we will know to subtract that amount from whatever the total is at the moment. There is also need to account for other various purchases and services rendered that aren’t a regular occurrence like the cost of a doctor, a cannon and ammo, a minigun, Train costs, hotel stays and whiskey, and anything he may have bought in the future.

So now we have the Profits, the assets, and the expenses covered, the only thing left is to do the hard work, and to tally up all the money exchanged in all of the character’s appearances. I will also be showing the total balance in today’s money after each regular balance is added, to make it easier to picture the amount of money we are dealing with using an inflation calendar. The modern total might wobble a bit depending on what year is being used for inflation, but that doesn’t really matter until the end, it is just a guideline for now. So without further ado, see you on the other side.

You can read the full, itemized document complete with citations at ScribeD (and embedded below). But Specter also offered a TL;DR on Reddit:

Over his entire life, Jonah Hex made about $750,000 in just straight cash. Combined with other things he received as rewards such as land grants, antiques, and a 30% share of Gotham’s most prominent casino, it adds up to just under 30 million. Combine that with inflation, and the rarity and value of the currency he dealt with in coin collecting circles, and Jonah Hex has over 1 billion dollars.

To be precise, $29,835,358.66 without inflation, or $1,067,763,122.15 With Inflation.

One Redditor called Specter’s work “the most devoted nerdery I’ve seen this week.” Frankly, that sounds like it’s majorly underselling it.

How Much Is Jonah Hex Worth? A Redditor Digs Deep To Find Out


Posted by Marykate Jasper

A new initiative called #PaintBack aims to do more than just paint over Nazi graffiti; they work to transform it into art. “We hope to see more people peacefully claim back their neighborhoods and contribute to building strong, open-minded, and colorful communities,” said Victoria Tschirch, the co-founder of Die Kulturellen Erben (The Cultural Heritage).

Back in the spring, Tschirch received a call from a concerned citizen about a swastika that had been graffiti’d on a local wall. She was intending to arrange for its cleanup, but Die Kulturellen Erben co-founder and street artist Ibo Omari, who was born in Europe to Lebanese and Turkish parents, said he and a friend would handle it. “We said we are going to take care of it — don’t spend any money, don’t get your hands dirty,” Omari told The Verge. “So we went there and made something beautiful out of it.”

Omari and his friend transformed that initial swastika into a mosquito, but designs since then have included four-leaf clovers, houses, owls, Rubik’s cubes, and more. The movement has since spread out from Berlin, with hundreds of posts on Instagram.

Omari also hosts graffiti workshops at Die kulturellen Erben, so that young street artists can learn to easily alter the swastikas with templates and training. “We wanted to answer with love and happiness,” he told The Verge, “so that young people can relate to it…We take their ugly message and make something beautiful out of it.”

However, the group is careful to get permission from the city before spray-painting over the swastikas. It is illegal to spray paint a public building in Berlin without permission, even if somebody else has already defaced it.

Omari and Tschirch both believe that the move to reclaim streets from Nazi propaganda is especially urgent now. Like the United States, Germany has seen a recent surge in far-right activity. Since more than a million refugees have joined the country, xenophobia has been on the rise. “It’s strange that in 20 years of integration and politics, people still feel scared by foreigners. That is unacceptable to us,” said Omari. “People are manipulated by fear,” Tschirch said. “They fear the unknown and they fear that someone could possibly take something away from them.”

Honestly, just getting rid of a Nazi symbol is plenty enough. But I do love that PaintBack is helping young people to reclaim their neighborhoods as their own, by painting over hate with clever, creative artwork. In place of hate, they’re not just restoring the status quo; they’re making something better than before – and that’s a beautiful metaphor for political progress.

(Via The Verge, CityLab, and Al Jazeera English; image via screengrab)

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Posted by Joshua Davison

New Avengers (2010)
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Writer: Brian Michael Bendis, Artists: Stuart Immonen, Mike Deodato Jr., Daniel Acuna, Publisher: Marvel Comics, Release Date: 2010

This will be a bit different from the previous “Throwback Corner” articles I’ve done. Whereas others have taken apart a single volume or collection from a series, this will be taking the 2010 New Avengers series by Brian Michael Bendis as a whole and talking about why I like it so much.

This is in part to celebrate the launch of Defenders today, as a lot of that series has been influenced by Brian Michael Bendis’ work with the characters, such as his Marvel Knights: Daredevil, Alias, and, of course, his New Avengers work.

I chose this version of the series mainly because it had all four of the Defenders in it: Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, and Iron Fist, with Daredevil joining later on in the series.

I’ve made it clear before, but I love the works of Brian Michael Bendis. A lot of people hate this man’s work, and I partially understand why. He has a rather cocky air to his writing style, and the all of his characters are really snarky.

However, the man can set up an interesting plot, stories tend to connect through cause-and-effect in some ways, he knows when to get serious, and he tends to use a lot of great characters. The dialogue is usually very clever too.

Enter the Heroic Age and his second iteration of New Avengers. You have a large team with a lot of strong personalities: Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, Hawkeye, Mockingbird, the Thing, Spider-Man, Wolverine, Doctor Strange, Ms. Marvel, Daredevil and Squirrel Girl later on, and even Doctor Voodoo briefly.

This was such an endearing lineup. Every character had a unique personality (despite what a lot of people say about Bendis, no, not all of his characters feel the same), they play off of each other well, and the threats they fight are cool. Lady Superia, Norman Osborn and his second gen Dark Avengers, Doctor Doom, Wonder Man’s Revengers, Daniel Drumm, and others.

It was generally at its best when it wasn’t navigating an overblown story like Fear Itself and Avengers vs. X-Men. However, it could generally navigate those well enough, though a couple of AvX issues live in infamy with me, one entirely about Hope Summers training at K’un Lun and the other being entirely a simulation by Danger of the X-Men.

Stuart Immonen did the art on the first few issues, Daniel Acuna picked up one, and the Mike Deodato Jr. took over for the rest of the series. It’s almost odd seeing a book being mostly done by a single artist these days. I quite miss it. This was also where my affinity for Deodato originated. His strong forms that erred on the side of photorealism were always quite appealing to me. He does give most of his female characters the classic large breasts and butts, which is a bit of a bummer. However, the art is good enough outside of that for me to still appreciate his style.

There was one plot thread about Doctor Doom ambushing a dinner date between Luke Cage and Jessica Jones which I’m pretty sure was never resolved. He promised something coming for Luke Cage and the New Avengers, but it never seemed to come to pass.

Also, it goes without saying I love the idea of a Luke Cage-led Avengers team. This character has turned out to be a natural leader. He’s strong, can keep his cool, and knows when to get serious. After Steve Rogers, he is the best speech-giver in Marvel Comics. A lot of the most hell-yeah moments in comics for me have been Luke Cage speeches in the New Avengers.

So yeah, after Thunderbolts and Ed Brubaker’s Captain America and Winter Soldier comics, this is easily my favorite Marvel Comics series. It had heart, humor, action, and a fantastic cast of characters. Check this one out if you ever see the trades for it.

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Josh’s Throwback Corner: An Overview Of Bendis’s Heroic Age New Avengers


Posted by Rich Johnston

Todd Mathy writes,

It’s hard to believe that two years ago, Bleeding Cool posted an article about Robots vs. Princesses.

At the time it was an idea in its infancy. The scripts were still being written and I only had five lettered pages of line art from my artist (co-creator) Nicolas Chapuis for a pitch. Fast forward two years and we’ve reached our funding goal and are ready to at least put out a first issue. The journey of Robots vs. Princesses from idea to Kickstarter is as much a tale as the actual story.

Robots vs. Princesses was born in a First Grade classroom. I wanted something the kids I taught could read and enjoy whether they were 6 or 60. I wanted to write a comic that didn’t talk down to them. The idea of “what if Disney Princesses met the Transformers?” was my starting point. The next thing I thought of when brainstorming the project was, “What if Arya Stark was a Disney Princess? “ That led to the creation of Princess Zara, from there why the robots and princesses were kept apart, from there “What if Zara met Bumblebee?” which led to the creation of Wheeler. From there “what if Wheeler was an evil robot defector?” and so on. I answered these questions and was off to the races.

I wrote the outline and scripts for the series at a breakneck pace. I posted my scripts in the Comics Experience Workshop for feedback then found an artist in Nicolas Chapuis. Together we created a pitch package. Then at MoCCA, I bumped into Rich and told him about the project. He liked it and posted said article about it. That article led to a publisher expressing interest. I thought that and a couple of pull quotes were all I needed to run a successful Kickstarter so I could pay Nic and my letterer Sean Rineheart to help me put the book out, and fund all four issues at once. It wasn’t.

Long story short, I launched a Kickstarter to fund all four issues at once. The number was high, especially high for a rookie. It didn’t come close to succeeding, so I cancelled the campaign. But it was not the end.

I took a day to think about what went wrong and I realized I flew to high to the sun. I’m not an established creator, or working on an established but dormant property, I’m a guy trying to break in with an untested idea. I couldn’t possibly raise my initial goal, now that I think about it. Still, I believed in my idea.

I believed in my idea because Bleeding Cool wouldn’t have written about it if it didn’t have merit. I believed in it because a publisher wouldn’t have expressed interest if it didn’t have merit. I believed in it because I could ask Mick and Noelle Foley, So Cal Val, “Fallen Angel” Christopher Daniels, Neil Kaplan (Zarkon on Voltron Legendary Defender), and even members of GWAR, who they thought would win the fight and get a response. But most importantly, I gave copies of my pitch preview to my fellow teachers to share with their class. And the response I got from all of them was that the kids wanted to know what happened next. I knew I had to answer that question and do this, for them.

It’s okay to make mistakes so long as they’re honest and you learn from them. I tell this to the kids I teach, and I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t hold myself to the same standard. I looked at what went right and what went wrong and retooled my campaign. I gave myself a one-year window and spent it building an audience through a weekly mailing list and setting a modest goal. It was the right choice. Right now our first issue is funded, but myself and Nic want to do more.

From this point forward every dollar raised will go toward producing future issues of Robots vs. Princesses, so we can get the full story out to you sooner rather than later.

Comics are for everyone and that includes kids. I want to give kids a timeless story that they can pass down, along with a story that will entertain their parents. But mostly, I want my students to know that Mr. Matthy wasn’t blowing smoke when he says to follow your dreams. They can come true. It takes work, but it can happen.

Robots vs. Princesses is live on Kickstarter through August 24th. Check us out, there are some fun rewards.

Writer’s Perspective: What I Learned From Creating ‘Robots Vs. Princesses’


Posted by Joshua Davison

Black Panther and the Crew #5
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Writer: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Pencilers: Butch Guice, Mack Chater, Stephen Thompson, Inkers: Scott Hanna, Mack Chater, Stephen Thompson, Color Artists: Dan Brown, Paul Mounts, Publisher: Marvel Comics, Release Date: Out Now, Price: $3.99

We are given a look at how Ezra’s Crusaders fell apart as the mutant Avenger Manifold arrives in Harlem to challenge the Americops. He has connections with Ezra, too, and Ezra convinced him to make a home in Harlem in between his running from place to place. Manifold is met by Black Panther, Luke Cage, Misty Knight, and Storm as the five decide what to do about the Americops and the Hydra incursion into Harlem.

There are a lot of things revealed in this comic that have a lot of implications for the story itself and its relation to the real world.

As such, I’m going to go over the broad strokes before I start going in over my head in discussion about race, institutional racism, and criminal acts done in the name of revolution. Oh boy.

So, broad strokes: this comic works very well. It’s cool seeing Manifold show up and kick some robot ass as he assaults the Americop gestapo-bots. His motivations are sound, and it’s nice getting more in-depth into the character of Manifold after his exploits in Jonathan Hickman’s Avengers and Avengers World.

Butch Guice’s artwork, as always, is great. He rocked in Captain America, and he rocks here too. The color work of Dan Brown and Paul Mounts is very atmospheric and heavy. The flashback work of Mack Chater and Stephen Thompson compliments Guice’s artwork very well, and the styles do not feel incongruous at all.

As always, I recommend this comic and will continue to bang my drum about how Marvel should not have cancelled Black Panther and the Crew after two issues and minimal sales figures to speculate upon.

Anyway, spoiler time. Ezra’s Crusaders fell apart because the rest of the team took an interest in robbing banks and armored cars. They justify it as still fighting imperialism, just in a different way. Ezra could not abide by that, and he is expelled from the team with a threat that, if he interferes, they will come after him.

Furthermore, we figure out that Ezra’s team was secretly funded by Hydra, which raises all kinds of questions, the implications of which I’m not sure can entirely elaborate upon.

The implication here is that even rebellion can benefit the powers that be. It also draws a line in the sand between genuine activism and self-serving criminality with Ezra representing the former and his teammates representing the latter.

Having literal-Nazi Hydra represent the powers that be which want a rebellion obviously throws a lot of shade at the U.S. government and businesses. Of course, this comparison is not without reason, see also the War on Drugs, the dealings with South American drug lords which resulted in a lot of cocaine being brought into the U.S, and how the FBI treated the Black Panthers in the 1960s.

It also shows how good people can be used by evil men. It makes all of this feel a lot more real and depressing. Ezra Keith was a good man, and he was brought low by his own allies and the people that backed them.

This discussion has probably been a lot more unfocused than I intended.

I guess my point is, as always Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Black Panther and the Crew remains a thought-provoking comic giving a measured discussion to real-world problems, and I continue to recommend it. If you haven’t hopped on by this point, buying the trade is a more prudent option. There is only one issue left before this story ends. I look forward to seeing how it wills stick the landing.

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Black Panther And The Crew #5 Review: Manifold Takes The Stage


Posted by Lauren Sisselman

Fans in the Houston, Texas area! A brand new comic con is heading your way this year, and it looks like it’ll be a good time for all. Fandemic will be hosting it’s inaugural convention (which will also kick off a convention tour!) September 15th-17th. Tickets are on sale now, and range from $35-$150. Guests will have a chance to meet celebrities, comic creators, and cosplayers, all at the NRG Center!

Guests include:

Norman Reedus
Jeffrey Dean Morgan
Bruce Campbell
Sebastian Stan
Neal Adams
Nate Butler
Clinton Hobart

And more! You can check out the full lineup on their website. So get your costumes ready, pick out what books you wanna get signed, and come out and party!

A New Convention Called Fandemic Is Coming To Houston, Texas


Posted by Marykate Jasper

After The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that Disney and Lucasfilm are in talks with director Stephen Daldry to helm an Obi-Wan Kenobi film, the speculation began. The project does not have a script or a star attached yet, and the negotiations with Daldry “are in the earliest stages,” so we honestly have no idea what’s in store at this point…which means we’re going to lean the hell into this speculation, everybody!

Now, pretty much everyone agrees that Lucasfilm and Disney have three main options for this movie:

  1. Young, pre-Jedi Obi-Wan
  2. Sad, middle-aged Obi-Wan in the span between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope
  3. Force Ghost Obi-Wan during the new trilogy

Given that, let’s examine the options.

Young Obi-Wan (Pre-Phantom Menace)

As Nerdist‘s Jessica Chobot observed, this isn’t the studio’s best bet. “We’ve already seen the Jedi Knight origin story from Anakin’s perspective,” she said, “and it might have been the dullest entry in the entire series…You probably want to set these spin-offs during the actual ‘star wars,’ not during all the trade negotiations and Senate hearings that led up to those wars.”

I also don’t think anyone’s really clamoring for a young Obi-Wan movie, especially given the fandom’s hope for Ewan McGregor to get a shot at a decent script, but there’s no denying that it would give Lucasfilm and Disney a familiar, easy, three-act structure and heroic arc. Hollywood loves an origin story.

However, Lucasfilm and Disney also have the option to hedge much closer to The Phantom Menace material, pulling us into some of the diplomatic and political machinations from the prequels. And the fact that they’ve reached out to Daldry as a potential director does suggest some talkier material. Daldry got his start in theater, the talkiest of visual mediums, winning two Olivier Awards and a Tony. He then received Oscar nominations for The Hours, a talky drama; The Reader, a talky drama; and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, a talky drama. (Also Billy Elliot, a dancy drama.) He received an Emmy nomination for The Crown, another talky drama.

Looking at that career, it seems like he’s the sort of director you’d contact for a Senate-hearings-heavy piece from just before The Phantom Menace. But I would hope, after the prequels’ rather disastrous reception, that Lucasfilm won’t go back down that road.

Middle-Aged Obi Wan (Between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope)

Most sites seem to agree that this nineteen-year time period is the most likely setting for Obi-Wan’s solo movie. First off, it allows them to use Ewan McGregor. And as Wired‘s Matt Kamen points out, this time period has already proven the richest well to mine for the comics and novels, so why not for a film? “Although this [Expanded Universe material] has all been deemed no longer in continuity,” he wrote, “there are lost riches in those stories. Disney has also proven it’s not above reclaiming Expanded Universe characters and concepts that could still work.”

The question, then, is which stories Disney and Lucasfilm might adapt. The Hollywood Reporter‘s Graeme McMillan believes “there’s a high probability that the stand-alone Obi-Wan Kenobi movie currently in development will feature the Jedi Knight taking on Tusken Raiders.”

Honestly, the dusty, vigilante justice of Obi-Wan Kenobi in exile basically sounds like Logan on Tatooine, which I would be 100% here for. Daldry also really knows how to use characters’ silence to create a moment, so he’d make excellent use of the barren, wind-wracked landscape and the nighttime quiet of a deeply underdeveloped planet.

Wired, on the other hand, is rooting for another expanded universe story from this time period: Obi-Wan’s adventures with Ferus Olin. This story would have a much more action-adventure, master-apprentice feel to it, as the two try to outwit the growing fascist Empire and help others to resist. (Wow, this story also sounds timely.)

Either of these seems like a bankable option for Disney and Lucasfilm, and I’m sure there are dozens more alternatives as well.

Galaxy-Haunting Ghost Obi-Wan (During New Trilogy)

As Nerdist’s Chobot pointed out, this is pretty seriously unlikely. “We already heard [Obi-Wan’s] voice in Rey’s Force Vision from The Force Awakens,” she observed, “so we know he’s probably still out there, somewhere, in shiny blue translucent form. But somehow we doubt Disney is going to be keen on dumping $200 million into a movie where the hero is a dead dude who just goes around telling other people to use the Force.”

But, hold on just a second. While I touted Daldry’s talk-heavy movies above, it is also true that he’s got a great history with musicals. Directing Billy Elliot on both stage and screen, and the film adaptation of Wicked for 2019, Daldry clearly knows his way around a song-and-dance number. Obi-Wan ghost musical, anyone?

(Okay, in all seriousness, we’re getting the nineteen-year-gap story.)

What are you hoping for from the Obi-Wan movie, readers?

(Via Nerdist, The Hollywood Reporter, and Wired; image via Lucasfilm and Disney)

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The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—</p >


Posted by Lauren Sisselman

Julia Rika has been dressing up her whole life, from her parents donning her in princess gowns to the costumes she would make in 4th grade — but she really got serious with cosplay a little over six years ago. It’s been an expression of true self to her, and to help her feel comfortable with who she was. It also gives her the persona to be her favorite characters, and it’s a confidence booster! Everyone should try cosplay at least once in their lives.

Her dream cosplays include Bayonetta, Anastasia, and every outfit for Sakura Haruno. Here she is below, cosplaying as Nami from One Piece. You can follow her on Facebook, as well as Tumblr, Instagram, and YouTube under the name SakuraHarunoGirl!

one piece

Otakon Cosplay Spotlight: Julia Rika As Nami From One Piece


Posted by Joshua Davison

Aquaman #27
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Writer: Dan Abnett, Art and Color: Stjepan Sejic, Publisher: DC Comics, Release Date: Out Now, Price: $3.99

Captured by Ninth Tride crime lord Krush and his hitman Kadaver, Aquaman and Dolphin are at the mercy of this mutated mob boss, his lackeys, and his monsters.

Vulko continues to narrowly slip by Murk and the Atlantean police. To aid his efforts, the Widowhood send some back-up for the former advisor to the king.

Mera searches for help from an old friend: Tempest of the Titans.

There is magic in watching a consummate professional like Dan Abnett maneuver through the characters he’s set up on the board. Nothing feels wasted. No one feels boring or out of place. It all feels interesting, and it’s all compelling. I want to see what Vulko will do next. I want to see how Murk will cope when he finds that his old friend and king is still alive. I want to watch the odd partnership of Arthur and Dolphin. I want to see how Mera will convince Garth to go back to Atlantean sorcery.

If there is a weak point in this story, it is the interaction between Aquaman and Krush. Krush claims to represent all of the mutated “taintbloods” of the Ninth Tride whom the throne has always condemned and cast down. This would be a decent moment to see how Aquaman dealt with this old Atlantean bigotry and what he did for or against the taintbloods during his monarchy. However, we don’t. We don’t get to see what Aquaman did in regards to these people, and he kind of gets an easy out because he (rightly) posits that Krush is working directly under Corum Rath anyway.

Maybe this will be acknowledged and made right later on. Maybe Arthur will make sure to help them when he gets the throne back. That doesn’t fix that Arthur has been sort of absolved here without us knowing how he handled this situation before. And, no partnering with the conventionally attractive Dolphin and her minor mutations does not indicate that he’s been good to giant crab people and anthropomorphic sharks.

Admittedly, this is one minor neglect of the story. You watch the dialogue awkwardly skirt around this question, but it can be ignored as one moves through the narrative. The rest of the comic is still compelling. Watching Vulko trying to establish a partnership with the Widowhood’s envoy is cool. You feel for Garth as Mera asks him to return to the Atlantean magics he swore off (something you’ve been made privy too if you read this month’s Titans, also by Dan Abnett).

You don’t get the epic smackdown between the massive Krush and Aquaman yet, but I imagine that’s coming, unless this guy ends up tangling with Murk (just a random theory that kind of makes sense).

I don’t know what to say about Stepjan Sejic’s art that I haven’t already. This guy is absolutely freaking incredible. His shapes, forms, and colors are masterfully composed. This dude is a living legend in the making on par with Alex Ross, Adi Granov, and Gabrielle Dell’Otto. Just look at the panel above. That’s all that needs to be said.

Well that, and Krush’s eye stalks are freaking creepy and weird. They’re on the cover. Just look at those things. They’re not right! There’s something just so off about them!

Despite some minor quibbles, this is still another fantastic issue of Aquaman. It’s easily among DC’s best books right now, and you should be reading it.

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Aquaman #27 Review: Krush’s Eye Stalks Are Straight-Up Creepy


Posted by Rich Johnston

Rod Lamberti of Rodman Comics writes weekly for Bleeding Cool. Find previous columns here.

It didn’t surprise me to read that July 2017 saw the first drop in overall comics sales of the year. A drop in sales did happen. This summer was weaker than last summer sales wise for us. Rebirth last year was a big seller. Our orders were lower than last year reflecting less demand for comics.

Secret Empire

Secret Empire is following Civil War II in terms of sales for us. Started out with people being interested. The zero issue and first issues of Secret Empire didn’t blow out the doors for us, but people started picking up both issues up after they had been out for a while. Then, as the limited series went on, people lost interest. Did anyone enjoy the ending of Civil War II? As for Secret Empire, Barf is not the breakout character of 2017.

DC stayed the course. Their big thing was the four-part button crossover between the Flash and Batman. DC is now starting their big Metal crossover. Which has started off exciting readership. We will have to see as time goes on how well it will go. It has been somewhat confusing for some, with two one-shots leading up to the crossover.

Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man‘s first issue was number one on the sales chart the month it came out. Though as with Champions and many other Marvel titles, they start off on top of the sales charts, but quickly take a nosedive.

Valliant’s XO Manowar has been a bright spot for us. It managed to increase sales here in store. In the current crowded marketplace, that is no easy accomplishment.

Marvel’s All-New Wolverine has stabilized and sells roughly the same amount each issue — which again is no easy accomplishment.

Why the drop?

Lots of reasons in my mind. Some of the reasons I will go over with later on.

Will the drop be permanent?

No, in October Marvel will see a sales increase thanks to their lenticular variants. Some stores have chosen not to order them, which will make the variants rarer.

When DC first had their lenticular variants a few years ago, not all the comic stores received what they had ordered. There were shortages. When something is truly limited or people feel it is, often times people want it even more. Demand went up due to having less available product.

Marvel has already announced that their lenticular covers may be allocated in the previews ordering. So, they may be shorting stores product, which will drive up demand even more. If that does happen, I will not be happy. Their overly complicated order guidelines force comic stores to up their orders just so they have the option of ordering the lenticular covers.

Now, after October, there could be a big drop. There will still be lenticular covers coming out the following month by Marvel; though if they do not sell well, we could see a heck of a drop in the future. This means stores will be tying up their money in non-returnable product, often ordering more regular cover versions of a comic than they can hope to sell.

The stores that are not ordering Marvel’s lenticular covers are playing it safe, and they are not doing anything wrong by any means. My thought process is: I am ordering them simply because I feel I have to. We have six other comic stores in central Iowa. If we don’t carry the lenticular covers, then the people that want them will go elsewhere.

Turning people away that want to spend money is not the best option for us. As I have stated before, as of now we hope that some people that want the lenticular cover will also buy the non-lenticular cover, both for cover price, and making it a rule to help us balance out the over ordering to get the lenticular cover. That may change.

Variants are not long term sales solutions. After Marvel’s renumbering and variants, there could very well be another big drop. Marvel better be going big in 2018, because right now, 2017 for Marvel is not the year that the company is going to be remembered for good storylines and positive news.

DC You was not a hit for DC. For the most part it had been forgotten until DC Mystic U was announced as actually going to see print finally under the new name of Mystik U, since it was originally a part of DC You. DC’s Rebirth has shown that a company can turn things around quickly. From a zero to a hero in no time.

The market will have trouble as long as it is filled with so much material.

Right now, an anything-goes attitude doesn’t help. There doesn’t seem to be standards. A Marvel-way standard for writing or artists. Or the DC, IDW, Valiant, or whatever way be for any company. My Little Pony and The Simpsons have art based on what they look like on TV. The rest of the books by the various publishers change art styles with nearly every different artist.

Standards for writing. Is there such a thing? Is an editor able to tell a writer “No”? Are editors able to improve a story? In the Bane limited series, Batman seems fine with Bane killing people. Even the villain points it out to Batman himself. The Bane limited series should sell a lot better, though it seems to have nothing to do with his recent previous appearance in Batman.

Barf is going to save the day in Secret Empire? Seriously? No editor thought that might be a bit much? I am supposed to promote this? A possible new comic reader walks in and I am going to sell him on “Barf”?

With Marvel jumping ahead with their numbering on various books, it looks like people are treating them as first issues. The greatest drawback when Marvel has first issues or renumbers their titles for me is that no one cares about the previous issues afterwards. And I mean no one. Who wants Venom #1 through #8 now that it’s past issue 150? Same with all the previous renumbered series. No one cares.

Other than Batman and Wonder Woman DC’s New 52, comics are dead in the water now for us. People are focused on the current Rebirth series. That includes the writers and the readers. When a new writer comes on a book and doesn’t even acknowledge a past writer’s work on the character or characters, even in a single panel, that shows the writer doesn’t care. So why should the readers?

Editors need control on the books they are on — the ability to push a writer and artist to be better. To produce a better product. I try to push my employees all the time. A comic book is a team effort. Someone on that team has to make tough and unpopular calls. Not every writer has nonstop great ideas just because they are a writer. Pointing that out without fear of the writer crying “creative freedom” would be great.

These writers are writing characters they do not own to make money. Being surprised when their boss acts like their boss is very odd. Someone has to be concerned if the book will sell. Right now, there are so many books that people have forgotten about due to such low reader interest. Dollar bins are filled with material that no one cares about. Over the last few years these titles come to mind as titles that are just literally litter in comic bins due to no demand. All-New Inhumans, Avengers World, Black Panther: the Crew, Black Panther: World of Wakanda, Black Widow, Catwoman, DC Universe Presents, Elektra, Firestorm, Generation Next, Green Team, Hawk and Dove, Hyperion, Hawkman, Justice League United,  Kingpin, Nighthawk, Mockingbird, Omac, Omega Men, Prez, Secret Avengers, Slapstick, Solo, Starbrand and Nightmask, Uncanny Inhumans, Unstoppable Wasp, Wacky Raceland, and a heck of a lot more.

Instead of an anything-goes mentality when putting out new comics, how about a standard test? Will this book have a following? Should it just be a limited series (Mr. Miracle just showed that a limited series other than a Star Wars-related one can sell) to test demand? Should the book not be published yet to wait on a better creative team? Should a few issues be completed before the first issue actually comes out? Can the writer at least include in one panel an acknowledgement of the previous writer’s work on the series? Give at least the illusion that the writer cares about the comic’s history?

What is the current standards for having an artist on a series? Anything goes? They’re good as long as the deadlines are met?  If they work for cheap they’re hired?

Raise the standards for comics and then see the rise in interest on what is being published.

Comic Store In Your Future: The Secret Empire Sales Drop


Posted by Heidi MacDonald

Twin Peaks siren Sherilyn Fenn, aka Audrey Horne, has joined the Long Beach Comic Con as a celeb guest. The show takes place September 2-3 at the Long Beach Convention Center. This is a medium sized show that has strong comics content with just the right amount of celebrities, all in a very convenient location. 

Posted by Marykate Jasper

Kingsman: The Golden Circle is taking credit for Monday’s total solar eclipse in this funny promotional video. “This will go down in history as the single-most important movie promo of all time,” says Director of Market Research Guy Miller. (Please read all of these titles and names with air quotes.) The video then walks through the genesis of the idea, which they adopted after rejecting other marketing ploys like “flash mob” and “millennials.”

(Obviously, please do not share this video with that one uncle who still unironically shares Onion articles with the caption, “Unbelievable! What is happening to our country?”)

Having worked in corporate marketing, I particularly enjoyed this video because it’s so spot-on with its mockery of advertising and marketing terms. “If you look at our target audience, it makes perfect sense,” says Research Assistant Brian Weigel. “I mean, we have people that know about the sun, and we have people that know about the moon. That’s where they overlap. That’s where the magic happens, right?” The silly PowerPoint graphics are so similar to real-life, why-did-anyone-pay-you-for-this “insights” that consulting firms offer up, and the can-do slogans sound just like actual outlandish marketing campaigns, such as KFC launching a chicken sandwich into the stratosphere.

“Of course it’s possible,” says aerospace engineer Dr. Clifford Johnson. “It’s potentially catastrophic, but it’s possible.”

“Is it legal?” asks Weigel. “I mean, I couldn’t find any laws against it. I don’t think you can get sued for moving the moon.”

The total solar eclipse will be visible in a diagonal band across the continental United States on Monday, August 21. However, even if you aren’t in one of the areas where the eclipse will be visible, you can still watch it online.

Kingsman: The Golden Circle will be rather more widely available than the eclipse itself. It lands in theaters around the globe on September 22.

(Via io9; featured image via screengrab)

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The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—


Posted by Rich Johnston

Rob Jones writes:

A few weeks back, I stopped work on my comic Perfect Storm.

After more than 12 years of trying to tell the origin story of our character, Erin Storm, then jumping over to other shorter stories just to have something out, and going back and re-doing the origin pages over and over because of the changes in art style in the years in between — and never really completing it or being satisfied with the work — I felt like it was time to move on. That’s not to say that co-creator Gary Carbon may not continue with Perfect Storm, or that I may not be involved with whatever comes next, but as far as Perfect Storm being my day-to-day, first-thought-in-the-morning-last-thought-before-sleep passion project, I felt it was finally time to move on.

Maybe it’s the years of work, yet still not being where I want it to be; the constant displeasure with how my art looks; or the real-world personal issues that have taken up so much of my time and energy (whether I thought so or not). All I know is that after getting five-and-a-half pages into re-doing the origin story for, like, the sixth time, I was done.

I’ve not really enjoyed comics in general in a long time, and am down to only reading two regularly (Sex Criminals and The Fix). I’ve not taken on a work-for-hire comics job in even longer, and have long given up on my original goal of doing a regular project for DC or Marvel. Honestly, I thought I would be done with comics once I finally finished re-doing the Perfect Storm origin story — just one last story to tell, then I’d be done.

But I’m not.

Now that I’ve moved on from Perfect Storm and have time on my hands, I’m going to work on a story I’ve had in the back of my head for years with a new cast of characters. The new project is called Highspot, and it’s an adventure story that follows Kate Carter, an actress/stunt double with a passion for archaeology; relic hunter Jerry Carter (no relation to Kate); Texas oil man Conrad Brooks; and Conrad’s nephew Dennis, a trust fund baby with no real interests whom Conrad plans to manipulate to expand his sphere of influence. At the core of each character’s story: a desire to find the remains of Alexander the Great.

And this time, I’m not going to create this in a vacuum. That was one of my issues with Perfect Storm — I would work and work on something for months at a stretch before anyone would see anything, so it would be forever between updates. This time, I’m going to be posting constantly, showing you sketches, script doodles and asking for your opinions and critiques, both on my website and on my newly launched Patreon page,

Here are the first of the sketches: The character design of Kate Carter, as well as an illustration of Alexander the Great done by comic legend Dick Giordano! Dick drew an eight-page bio of Alexander for me in 2006 (I told you this has been cooking for some time!) that I will be re-inking and re-scripting to include in this project.

Be sure to check in regularly for more updates at or @robjonesart on social media. Thanks for following along!

Disillusionment With Comics Almost Made Me Give Them Up For Good


Posted by Rich Johnston

Drew Ford writes for Bleeding Cool:

I have involved myself in a comic book experiment! In the past, both through Dover Publications and my new imprint IT’S ALIVE!, I have put together collections. Whether it was comic books or graphic novels, I found a way to edit the work together into new collections, giving old fans a chance to revisit their old favorites, and new fans to the ability to discover the work for the first time. And I think I’ve done a decent job of picking stuff to put back on the shelves. The response from both fans and the press has been very positive, and I even received two Eisner Award nominations along the way. But there’s been something I wanted to do for a long time now, which I haven’t had the chance to do: I wanted to publish actual floppy comic books!

Now, like a few colleagues I shared this idea with early on, you are probably thinking that I have set my reprints aside to work on new comic books. But that’s simply not the case. My plan is to take a select group of comic books from many decades ago, and put them back in readers’ hands. Not in collections, however, but as good ol’ floppy comics!

The idea came from time spent reading through gobs of old Sam Glanzman comics. I was sitting there, flipping through them, thinking how well they work as floppies. And I started thinking how cool it would be to see an actual Sam Glanzman comic book back on the shelves of my local comic shop. The collections are important, and I am so grateful to have been able to get them made and in the stores, but at the end of the day, Sam Glanzman started out making comic books, and it made me sad that so many readers from this and future generations would never get a chance to experience his work in its original form. And although Sam sadly passed away recently, I had discussed this idea with him and his wife in previous months, and they both gave me the thumbs-up.

The idea kept kicking around in my head, but I wasn’t sure if anyone else would feel the same. Then one day, I was talking to a retailer who told me about some online conversation that took place involving a bunch of retailers. They were all wishing that publishers would put out floppies that had stand alone stories, so you wouldn’t have to read ten other comics to understand what is going on in the one you are reading. They also hoped for comics longer than 20 pages. And they claimed it would be OK to put a premium price on something like that (as long as it had nice paper and thick covers), because — and this was the biggie — this type of comic book has a much longer shelf life than the monthlies that come and go so quickly. So I hit him up with this idea of mine, and he was completely on board! Of course, his support wasn’t a guarantee by any means, but I did feel like I was on to something…so I gave myself permission to make it happen!

One of the original logos on COMBAT comic books.

Therefore, a few days ago, I launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise the funds necessary to publish an issue of Sam Glanzman’s COMBAT, that has been out of print since the 1960s! Never one to miss an opportunity for extra press, I decided that the first issue of COMBAT I would bring back into print is the one that contains the story of Dunkirk. Yes, I am aware that a movie by the same name just came out from heavy-hitting director Christopher Nolan. And if it causes a few extra people to pay attention to a Dunkirk comic book, that’s great! Remember, this is an experiment. I’ll take any shot at extra exposure I can get.

The COMBAT: DUNKIRK Kickstarter campaign page

Back to the comic book! This issue of COMBAT, featuring the story of Dunkirk, is of course a true story from WWII. All the stories in issues of COMBAT are from WWII. The story itself is just shy of 30 pages, and you even get a four-page back-up story, along with two more one pagers. Then there’s an essay about a key player from the battle of Dunkirk, and a few surprises not found in the original comic from the 1960s.  Of course, we will include the original cover art (in the back of the book), and I’ve even threatened to include a letters column (several hard core war comic fans, and Glanzman fans, have told me they would love to write letters for a column, for this new issue of COMBAT.

The new cover to the Dunkirk issue of COMBAT, featuring artwork by Sam Glanzman.

Oh, and if all that wasn’t enough, we are lucky enough to have a brand-new cover for this Dunkirk issue of COMBAT, illustrated by Walter Simonson! For each issue of COMBAT, we will produce a new standard cover using Glanzman’s interior art (seen here and on the campaign page), and what you might call a variant cover by another artist. The variant is very limited, as to encourage fans to pick it up from the Kickstarter. We are only printing 150 copies of the Simonson cover, and he will only sign 50 of them. So if you want one of these, I would encourage you to go grab one sooner than later from the Kickstarter page.

We don’t know yet what Mr. Simonson will come up with for his cover to COMBAT: DUNKIRK.

Future issues of COMBAT (if the initial Kickstarter is funded, and the experiment proves to be a success) will sport limited edition variant covers by a variety of artists, including Russ Braun, Timothy Truman, Billy Tucci, Dave Dorman…and living legend Russ Heath!

Just so everyone knows, I will be cleaning up the artwork on every page of COMBAT: Dunkirk. Each panel will be color and text corrected, and it will be printed on matte paper to give it a really nice look and feel.  It’s important to present these comics in a way that will excite and even wow people. So that’s what I am shooting for. Take a look at this sample of a page that has been cleaned up and color corrected. Original is on the left, cleaned-up version on the right.

There are 26 issues of COMBAT in total, and Sam Glanzman illustrated every last one of them. I am hoping that the idea of a standalone story about WWII, with brilliant, gritty art from a master like Glanzman, and a new cover by Walter Simonson, will be enough to encourage a few of you to throw us a pledge. And if enough of you do this, we can publish the Dunkirk issue of COMBAT. And if even more of you do this, we can eventually republish all 26 issues! But I guess I shouldn’t get ahead of myself. Let’s try and get this first issue published, and see where it takes us!

Bringing Back The Floppy Comic For The Battle Of Dunkirk


Posted by Lauren Sisselman

Last week I was lucky enough to photograph two cosplayers in their duo costumes, DJ Ranma S as Spike, and Kat as Rarity, characters from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Kat and Ranma have both been cosplaying for a considerable amount of time. Kat since 1983, Ranma for 18 years. Cosplay has a strong meaning to them. For Kat, it’s a chance to be her favorite characters, to stretch her skills as a crafter, and to boost her confidence. Kat has been sewing since she was 10, but when she discovered cosplay her skills grew, as it forced her to think outside the box. It’s helped her with anxiety issues, helped her with confidence, and it helped get her jobs as well! Ranma enjoys the fun aspect, and that he was goof off with his friends. Kat’s dram cosplay is one she’s done already; Sarah’s ballgown from Labyrinth. For Ranma, he hopes to one day be Kyosuke Kagami, Jotaru Kujo, and Protoman. DJ Ranma S can be found at Anime Jam Session. You can follow Kat at her website, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.



Otakon Cosplay Spotlight: Kat And DJ Ranma S As Spike And Rarity From My Little Pony


Posted by Lauren Sisselman

William Moulton Marston — one of the creators of Wonder Woman — was ahead of his time, and also considered an outrageous man. He was openly polyamorous in a time when that was morally looked down upon. He was ardently pro-female, when that was also looked down on. And he also really hated Nazis, like the majority of the comic industry and world at large.

In an article titled Women: Servants of Civilization in the February 1942 issue of the journal Tomorrow, Marston goes into a few points on these subjects. He talks about how he believes women will one day rule the world. Marsters then comments on letters he received — largely from men — saying that women don’t have the capacity to lead anyone, nor were the capable of governing their own bodies. He also talks about the minimization of female influence during the rise of Nazism. Copies of this article were included in the press packs sent out to promote the launch of Wonder Woman in her own series in Summer 1942.

Wonder Woman Co-Creator William Moulton Marston On Nazis' Problem With Women

Marston notes the steady rise of women’s material influence in the United States during this period, the accumulated wealth of women and their employment, and their impact on the U.S. economy. He also spoke highly of China’s Madame Chiang Kaishek, who led thousands of women in saving lives during WWII. Marston was well aware of how powerful and capable women are, which we see on full display with Wonder Woman.

Of course, Wonder Woman made her debut during World War II, and Marston doesn’t exactly mince words with his views on the Nazi party:

“Hitler and his clever physiological advisers knew perfectly well that the one opponent they could never kill was love.”

Marston said this in reaction to Hitlers moral “wet blanket” he had over Vienna and Paris. Clubs would close early, and women were told to stay home and be good housewives. He said that as long as a woman’s influence was minimized, hate and fear would win.

Marston continued:

“So long as woman’s influence is successfully minimized in these and other unfortunate centers of a once happy Europe, the dark forces of fear and horror will reign supreme. It is highly significant to a psychologist that Hitler and his original gang of political racketeers were singularly free from the influence of women. There was no woman’s influences whatsoever in the emotional beginnings of Nazism. The result, inevitably, was unrestrained male dominance. There’s no more reason for not killing humans who oppose you than for sparing the lives of mosquitoes, in the mind of a man whose self-seeking emotions are permitted to run rampant.”

I don’t need to convince you that Wonder Woman was ahead of her time, and that yes, there were several sexual undertones. But Marston wanted to normalize what Wonder Woman was. That women are powerful, and can do anything. They are free to pick their fates and live their lives as they see fit. Wonder Woman stands for truth, justice, and love.

He goes on to say that it was obvious that Hitler and his troops had no female influence, which resulted in unrestrained male dominance. Marston follows with “…the only hope of permanent peace and happiness for the humanity on this planet is an increased expression of love, and that women are the primary carriers of this great force…” you can clearly see “the power of love” in other such shows, like Sailor Moon. In the Wonder Woman movie, Wonder Woman even states that humans are worthy of love. Maybe William Moulton Marston was indeed onto something, something greater than Wonder Woman. Only time will tell.

Wonder Woman Co-Creator William Moulton Marston On Nazis’ Problem With Women


Posted by Rich Johnston

It appears there was a major printing issue with the release of many retailer exclusive covers for Dark Nights: Metal #1 by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo.

The UV coating on the comics was applied in a manner that was not consistent across the books. Retailers found some of their books had partial coating. Some had no coating. Many books were stuck to each other from the coating not drying prior to boxing them. And it bleeds over to the pages so that pages are stuck together as well. In addition, poor printing, stacking and handling mean that there was continual spine damage. And the issue has been widespread in comic book stores across the country.

As a result, for affected stores, DC Comics are going to reprint the entire exclusive cover print run and ship them direct from the printer.

Here’s a few of those exclusive covers that may have been affected.

DC Comics Reprint Retailer Exclusive Covers Of Metal #1 After Serious Print Flaws


Posted by Rich Johnston

Bryan Brandenburg, organiser of the Salt Lake Comic Con on from September 21st to the 23rd at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Utah. posted on the Rate My con page on Facebook,

Orson Scott Card wants to come to Salt Lake Comic Con. Knowing that he is controversial, we put it out to fans asking if he should attend. A large majority said yes, a incredibly vocal minority went ballistic and said no way. Thoughts?

By Nihonjoe.

As you can see, there were quite a lot of thoughts.

Successful science-fiction and fantasy author, Orson Scott Card has written novels such as Ender’s Game and comics such as Ultimate Iron Man. But it was in 2013 when he came to write the Superman comic that things got nasty. Because Card had not only opposed homosexuality and same-sex marriage, but joined the board of directors of the National Organization for Marriage, a group that campaigned against same-sex marriage, as well as linking homosexuality and paedophilia. The outcry was enough for Card’s Superman story to be “postponed” as artist Chris Sprouse decided he didn’t want to work with Card. The story has never been published.

Card has not moderated his views in the interim. And for many, he is the poster child for queer intolerance within fandom. Which is why Salt Lake City Con may have received the passionate response they allude to.

As for those thoughts, they mostly sat into four camps -” yes, we love Orson Scott Card”, “no, Orson Scott Card is a proponent of hate speech”, “yes, Orson is a proponent of hate speech but that shouldn’t stop the Con”, and “who is Orson Scott Card, let me google him, oh bloody hell”.

Oscar Scott Card has a new novel, Children Of The Fleet being published on October 10th and his new TV series Extinct, that he’s written with Aaron Johnston for BYUtv launches on October 1st, the week after the show. Johnston is confirmed as attending Salt Lake Comic Con.

Whatever happens, it looks like Orson will be getting some publicity out of it.


Should Orson Scott Card Be A Guest At Salt Lake Comic Con?


Posted by

This post will contain spoilers for the full show, stay away if you’re not done watching it! I’ll keep this relatively brief though, as this is not a definitive review. I’ll probably have more to say after I’ve at least had a chance to watch it again (I have a Defenders marathon scheduled with some friends tomorrow).

So… Wow. And not a good kind of wow, I’m afraid. Despite some excellent moments, scenes and characterizations, I would argue that this is the weakest show out of the Marvel/Netflix collaboration to date. And it mostly comes down to the plot.

But, let’s start at the beginning, and the beginning is actually very good. The early reviews of the first four episodes where somewhat mixed, and many pointed to the fact that it takes a while for the four heroes to get together as the biggest weakness of those early episodes. After having watched the whole show, I felt like their time apart, each pulling at one string of the bigger mystery, and their gradually moving into each other’s orbits was the best part of the show. And I very much enjoyed watching the first three episodes. Within the context of the story, it made sense that things would have to happen for these four character to have a reason to get together, and that this needed time. I thought Jessica’s bit was especially good, as I do like a bit of detective work, and I loved how Matt ended up in Jessica’s story through Foggy.

Their big fight/meeting at the end of episode three did its job, and was fun to watch, as was these characters feeling each other out during episode four, even though I’d argue that this is where the real pacing issues begin. That’s right, as the bigger story starts to pick up speed here, my feeling is that this is where the creators start phoning it in, relying too much on the chemistry between the characters to keep us hooked.

And that chemistry is there, definitely. I hope The Defenders gets a second season so that we can see these guys team up again, I just really hope they get to do so in a story that makes sense. And, I’ll say it, even the scenes they are in could, in many cases, have been much better written. I had actually expected more banter, more of them getting to know each other. I found the scene where Jessica tells the story of Matt’s father to be very moving, and the dynamic between those two is perhaps the best, but even with the five full episodes they had to devote to these characters existing in the same world, much less is actually accomplished than I had expected.

The team gets ready to fight Alexandra at the restaurant, as seen in episode four of Marvel's The Defenders

So, my big issue here has little to do with Matt/Daredevil, who I think has a strong outing. Sure, the fact that they’re trying to replay the emotional drama with him and Elektra from the end of season two at the end of this show (and having it feel even more out of key on account of Elektra’s transformation), is not my cup of tea, but for the most part, Charlie Cox gets to put in a fine performance. My big issue is the plot holes. Let’s make a list:

  • Why does the Hand need to destroy New York? I’m serious. Aside from wanting to cause mayhem, and because it’s their M.O. (they were apparently the bastards behind Pompeii and Chernobyl), why would they want to go the extra step beyond mining whatever is behind that wall that only Iron Fist can open? The destruction of New York beyond what is needed for their mining operation makes no sense. And, if it hadn’t been for their discovering that wall that they need Danny to open, wouldn’t they have been pretty much done after the first tremor?

  • How would the three month plan have been different? In the first episode, we see Alexandra and Madame Gao meet at the park to discuss their plans, and Gao says she’s got someone in the Mayor’s office. Alexandra, who has recently learned that she’s dying wants to speed things up. Gao points out that doing so will not be quiet, which is presumably why they have to go the plan B earthquake route. And, if I’m understanding this right, the point of the earthquake was to aid in the mining operation to get the substance that lets them live forever (at which point they come across that wall and suddenly realize they need an Iron Fist to get them all the way). But is Gao suggesting there was a less messy way of doing this that would have involved the mayor’s office? And if that was less messy, then it makes even less sense to speak of war and the destruction of New York.

  • Alexandra. Image episode one of Marvel's The Defenders.

  • Why is Alexandra dying a problem when they just tried to kill her themselves? When Elektra gradually grows a mind of her own, and decides to kill Alexandra, the remaining “fingers” of the Hand seem to have a problem with this, as she is needed for their front activities. If that’s the case, why did they conspire to have her killed something like the day before?

  • Why is Elektra suddenly so big on immortality?

    Elodie Yung is fantastic and I really dig her performance here, even tough I think she gets way too much air time in the context of this story. However, there are a lot of things about her that don’t quite make sense. First of all, the fact that she starts to “wake up” as early as the first time she comes across Matt really brings into question whether the Hand can do anything right. I know there’s supposed to be some “oh, but he was the one she loved” kind of magic going on here, but that kind of feels like a cop out.

    Once she does begin to find herself, she goes off on her own, and even visits Matt’s apartment. So, you definitely see her humanity coming back. Which is why it comes out of the blue when she decides to kill Alexandra and take over. I get that she’s starting to realize she’s being manipulated and thus would want revenge on a personal level. But the way she puts herself in the driver’s seat when it comes to the Hand’s big plan seems contrived to me, and not something that follows naturally from anything we’ve seen from her previously. I mean, I guess is shows that her dark side won, which Matt foolishly still decides to ignore, but it’s a plot twist that, while shocking and at least a little interesting, doesn’t feel earned.

  • Elektra wakes up. Image from the trailer for The Defenders.

  • And the big one: In what way was Elektra/The Black Sky essential to any of this? The Black Sky, as a concept, was introduced in season one of Daredevil, and has remained somewhat enigmatic ever since. Clearly, there can be more than one at a time, they seem to be a particular kind of endowed human (though everyone in the know appear to treat them as things rather than people), that can be trained and activated to become a very powerful fighter with what looks like superhuman strength.

    This is all well and good, and excellent reason to want to have one of these in your stable of ninjas. But, in a world where the weaponry and how battles are fought have moved on a bit since the Hand was formed, I don’t quite understand what’s so essential about having a “living weapon,” or why it would be so disastrous for it to fall into enemy hands (if that’s even a concern). More to the point, I don’t understand what having this living weapon has to do with the plan to mine more of that immortality substance from underneath New York City. I, too, would question Alexandra’s reasons for spending the last of their resources on resurrecting Elektra, unless she actually wants an ersatz daughter (my favorite explanation at this point, since it at least makes sense on some kind of twisted human level). The fact that no one else in the Hand leadership actually thought the Black Sky was essential to their plan should tell you everything. Is the Black Sky, at the end of the day, just a big red herring?

Two seasons of Daredevil and one season of Iron Fist building up to this mess of a resolution is just a damn shame. I can and still do enjoy spending time with these characters, but we should be able to expect more from this Marvel/Netflix collaboration. I at least hope we’re done with ninjas for a long time, because I’d much rather see these guys team up to address street-level threats (shoot me, but I actually cheered when Stick died).

I had other problems as well, with Foggy and Karen in particular. The way Foggy is written is, at times, so unsympathetic that I wonder if they are preparing fans to celebrate his possible death in an upcoming season. And for Karen to be so anti-Daredevil, given her stance on vigilantes (and his having saved her life more than once), doesn’t feel like it’s consistent with her earlier portrayals at all. It feels as if they’re using Foggy and Karen as mere plot devices to thwart Matt’s desire to put on the suit again, and build up this false notion that there is no way Matt would truly want to pursue a life outside of (and in addition to) Daredevil. Please, please let us see this put right in the third season of Daredevil. I just fear there’s so much groundwork to be done, they’ll run out of time, with Matt and Foggy’s relationship in particular.

Oh well, these were my thoughts after seeing the show once. If you guys felt this show brought everything you asked for and more, I’m not going to argue. In fact, I envy you. Maybe I’ll be more forgiving after a second viewing (this has actually tended to be the case for me for all of the Netflix shows). I’m just a bit frustrated by the missed opportunities. Comment away! Full spoilers allowed, obviously.

IFC Center in New York is having multiple screenings of "Rebel in the Rye," written and directed by Danny Strong (with Adam Busch in a small role). There will be Q&As with the filmmaker at most screenings.

19 August 2017

Posted by Li-Young Lee

In sixth grade Mrs. Walker

slapped the back of my head

and made me stand in the corner

for not knowing the difference

between persimmon and precision.

How to choose

persimmons. This is precision.

Ripe ones are soft and brown-spotted.

Sniff the bottoms. The sweet one

will be fragrant. How to eat:

put the knife away, lay down newspaper.

Peel the skin tenderly, not to tear the meat.

Chew the skin, suck it,

and swallow. Now, eat

the meat of the fruit,

so sweet,

all of it, to the heart.

Donna undresses, her stomach is white.

In the yard, dewy and shivering

with crickets, we lie naked,

face-up, face-down.

I teach her Chinese.

Crickets: chiu chiu. Dew: I’ve forgotten.

Naked:   I’ve forgotten.

Ni, wo:   you and me.

I part her legs,

remember to tell her

she is beautiful as the moon.

Other words

that got me into trouble were

fight and fright, wren and yarn.

Fight was what I did when I was frightened,

Fright was what I felt when I was fighting.

Wrens are small, plain birds,

yarn is what one knits with.

Wrens are soft as yarn.

My mother made birds out of yarn.

I loved to watch her tie the stuff;

a bird, a rabbit, a wee man.

Mrs. Walker brought a persimmon to class

and cut it up

so everyone could taste

a Chinese apple. Knowing

it wasn’t ripe or sweet, I didn’t eat

but watched the other faces.

My mother said every persimmon has a sun

inside, something golden, glowing,

warm as my face.

Once, in the cellar, I found two wrapped in newspaper,

forgotten and not yet ripe.

I took them and set both on my bedroom windowsill,

where each morning a cardinal

sang, The sun, the sun.

Finally understanding

he was going blind,

my father sat up all one night

waiting for a song, a ghost.

I gave him the persimmons,

swelled, heavy as sadness,

and sweet as love.

This year, in the muddy lighting

of my parents’ cellar, I rummage, looking

for something I lost.

My father sits on the tired, wooden stairs,

black cane between his knees,

hand over hand, gripping the handle.

He’s so happy that I’ve come home.

I ask how his eyes are, a stupid question.

All gone, he answers.

Under some blankets, I find a box.

Inside the box I find three scrolls.

I sit beside him and untie

three paintings by my father:

Hibiscus leaf and a white flower.

Two cats preening.

Two persimmons, so full they want to drop from the cloth.

He raises both hands to touch the cloth,

asks, Which is this?

This is persimmons, Father.

Oh, the feel of the wolftail on the silk,

the strength, the tense

precision in the wrist.

I painted them hundreds of times

eyes closed. These I painted blind.

Some things never leave a person:

scent of the hair of one you love,

the texture of persimmons,

in your palm, the ripe weight.

Li-Young Lee, “Persimmons” from Rose. Copyright © 1986 by Li-Young Lee. Reprinted with the permission of BOA Editions Ltd.,

Source: Rose(BOA Editions Ltd., 1986)

Li-Young Lee

More poems by this author


Posted by Jude Terror

Will Forbush Man be revealed to be a secret Nazi?!

Last but not least of Marvel’s slow burn November solicitation rollouts today is Not Brand Ecch, returning as one of several series getting one-shot revivals for Marvel Legacy.

Now, we know (some of) the creative team for the book, and the first name is Twitter pundit and Secret Empire writer Nick Spencer. Spencer will be joined by writers Chris Hastings, Jay Fosgitt, and Franco-Belgian cartoonist More. More also has an art credit on this one, along with Jay Fosgitt and Gurihiru, while David Nakayama drew the cover pictured above.

With a Legacy number of 14, Not Brand Echh (as the cover says) or Not Brand Ecch (as the solicit revealed EXCLUSIVELY on IGN says) will be an interesting project in 2017. From the constant rehashing of old glories, nonstop super-mega-crossover events featuring heroes vs. heroes, editors and creators acting like knobs on Twitter, superheroes behaving like fascists even when they aren’t secret members of Hydra, shameless and unrepentant price gouging, and an insane reliance on variant covers, hyperbole, and other empty gimmickry to sell comics over quality storytelling, real-life Marvel is basically a parody of itself already… so what’s left for this comic to satirize?

What we’re saying is, the title no longer means the same thing it once did. Marvel *is* Brand Echh.

Look for this in stores in November.

Forbush Man Returns!
Writer: Nick Spencer, Chris Hastings, Jay Fosgitt, and more!
Art: Jay Fosgitt, Gurihiru, and more!
Cover: David Nakayama
Get ready to break the internet, folks, because FORBUSH MAN IS BACK – and he’s ready to take over the comics industry! Meanwhile, Captain America, Gwenpool, and more are…not quite themselves these days. Featuring stories by NICK SPENCER (SECRET EMPIRE, CAPTAIN AMERICA) CHRISTOPHER HASTINGS (GWENPOOL, VOTE LOKI) JAY FOSGITT (My Little Pony, Bodie Troll) and many, many more!

Nick Spencer Leads Creative Team Of ‘Not Brand Echh’ For Marvel Legacy In November


Posted by Rich Johnston

Bleeding Cool told you yesterday that the Justice Insurgent crossover spinning out of Metal into a number of DC Universe titles featuring the Dark Knights of the sentient Dark Multiverse would be renamed to the more-Metal “Bats Out Of Hell”. Well, so it has come to pass and DC Comics has let the bats out in the form of a series of tie-in stories and  a one shot issue featuring the return of Thanagar’s favorite mystery hunter, Carter Hall.

As a follow up to the “Gotham Resistance” (TEEN TITANS #12, NIGHTWING #29, SUICIDE SQUAD #26, GREEN ARROW #32), “Bats out of Hell” (THE FLASH #33, JUSTICE LEAGUE #32, HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #32, JUSTICE LEAGUE #33) sees The Flash, the Green Lantern Corps and the Justice League all waging a life-or-death battle against the evil versions of Batman from the Dark Multiverse. These tie-in titles feature connected covers that, when joined show members of the Justice League in pitched battle against these malevolent dark knights.


Connecting covers by Ethan Van Sciver
“Bats out of Hell” part one! After the harrowing events of DARK NIGHTS: METAL #3, the JUSTICE LEAGUE has scattered around the world to find the only artifacts that can fight back against the invasion of the Dark Multiverse. The League thinks they know how to take back their world, but they are not prepared for who is standing in their way: The Seven Dark Knights of the Dark Multiverse. With all the brilliance of Batman, but none of the morals. Barry Allen, The Fastest Man Alive, is the first to get a taste of their plan, as THE RED DEATH takes him on at the Fortress of Solitude.
On sale OCTOBER 25 • 32 pg, FC $2.99 US • RATED T

Written by BRYAN HITCH
Connecting covers by Ethan Van Sciver
A METAL tie-in! “BATS OUT OF HELL” part two! The Justice League have been separated by the dreaded Dark Knights and are forced into twisted Bat-Caves designed to kill them! The Batman Who Laughs and the Murder Machine experiment on Cyborg, seeing how he reacts to the horrors of the Dark Multiverse! Can the Justice League survive their worst nightmares made real?!
On sale NOVEMBER 1 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

Connecting covers by Ethan Van Sciver
A METAL tie-in! “BATS OUT OF HELL” part three! The Dawnbreaker descends on Coast City, ready to suck its light away before moving on to the rest of our world. Backed up by the power of the Justice League, Hal Jordan stands ready to stop the perverted Lantern—until the Batman Who Laughs steps out of the shadows.
On sale NOVEMBER 8 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+

Written by BRYAN HITCH
Connecting covers by Ethan Van Sciver
A METAL tie-in! “BATS OUT OF HELL” finale! it’s the Justice League versus the Dark Knights! FIGHT! The Dark Knights have taken a fallen Justice League to the frightening castle of [REDACTED] inside the possessed Gotham City, where they will be prepared as a sacrifice!  The Justice League’s only hope is Cyborg, whose return from the Dark Multiverse has changed him forever!
On sale NOVEMBER 15 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

Oh and they found the solicit for Hawkman Found too…

Written by JEFF LEMIRE
Variant cover by JIM LEE and SCOTT WILLIAMS
One of DC’S greatest heroes is missing! No one has seen or heard from Carter Hall—a.k.a. Hawkman—in years. Reincarnated repeatedly since the dawn of humanity, Hawkman has spent his many lives uncovering history’s most fantastic mysteries, and now he has become one himself! Take a journey into the one of the darkest corners of the DC Universe as a mysterious man tries to piece together what happened to Hawkman, and how it all connects to the events of DARK NIGHTS: METAL!
On sale DECEMBER 20 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T+


DC Comics Confirms Bats Out Of Hell Crossover With November Solicits Sneak-Peek


Posted by Jude Terror

DC has announced a new Black Lightning series from Tony Isabella and Clayton Henry, part of the new way all solicits come out now, one at a time.

Due out in November, Black Lightning: Cold Dead Hands will run for six issues, and DC promises things won’t be “a throwback to Isabella’s previous time with the character.” Instead:

While the hallmarks of a good Black Lightning comic are all there, Jefferson’s gone through some changes. He’s still a teacher who works to be a positive force for his students both in and out of costume, but he’s younger than he’s ever been before—around 28 years old. He’s also not married and in a departure from the show, he doesn’t have daughters.

Jefferson does, however, still have a very big problem by the name of Tobias Whale. But Black Lightning’s notorious adversary has gone through some redesigning as well. He’s now fit, built like an athlete, and he’s no longer an albino. But don’t think it’s made Tobias Whale any smaller of a problem for Jefferson or the city of Cleveland, in which the series is based. He’s as ruthless and powerful as ever.

Oh, and what convenient timing! The CW’s Black Lightning series is set to premiere next year.

Check out the solicit and some preview art below. The first issue hits stands November 1.


Art and cover by CLAYTON HENRY
Variant cover by KEN LASHLEY

All-new mini-series by original creator Tony Isabella teamed with superstar artist Clayton Henry! Black Lightning is back and things are not the same! In his home town of Cleveland, high school teacher Jefferson Pierce is a role model for his students. As Black Lightning, he’s fighting to keep them safe, even as his city’s streets are invaded by local gangs with deadly super-weapons. And wait until you see who their supplier is! Real-world issues in a super-hero world! Expect the unexpected!

On sale NOVEMBER 1 • 32 pg, FC, 1 of 6, $3.99 US • RATED T

Black Lightning was created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden, and you had better phrase it exactly like that, or else.

DC Announces Black Lightning: Cold Dead Hands Mini From Tony Isabella And Clayton Henry For November


Posted by Heidi MacDonald

You’re probably sick and tired of the disturbing news that the US has been embroiled in for the last week. But in case you aren’t – or are, like The Beat, just glued to the Internet and TV with your eyelids propped up, here are some comics about recent events and background.  All the way […]

Posted by Kyle Pinion

DC’s big Summer event, Metal by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo, hit us with a bang this week and was basically the talk of the comics internet. It was a bonkers (in a great way), and ended in such an audacious fashion that there’s no doubt that its creative plans on leaving everything on the […]

Posted by Dunc

Between this and Boba Fett, it’s like the rumors are endeavoring to make movies on saga major leaguers like Han and Obi-wan more palatable.

Posted by Dan Wickline

This week’s Versus from DC pits the Bruce Wayne version of Batman against the Terry McGinnis version, or Batman Beyond. The Dark Knight of the future against the original Caped Crusader. Kind of an interesting choice in combatants as Bruce is also Terry’s mentor. He taught Terry everything Terry knows, but I doubt Bruce taught him everything Bruce knows. Batman Beyond became popular enough as an animated series to bring the character into the comic universe and I’ll admit, Terry is a cool character. But come on, we’re talking about the OG Bats here.

Batman Beyond

McGinnis may have a futuristic suit with a stunning array of abilities and tricks, but we’re talking about a guy who is so clever and cunning that he created a plan to take down his own teammates, a plan so thorough that someone else found it and used it… and the only person they couldn’t take down with it was Batman himself. Bruce stands among the Gods and is considered an equal. Folks have regular conversations about Batman beating Superman, Do we really think that he can’t take out some young kid in high-tech pajamas?

As much as I like Terry McGinnis, he is no more in Bruce’s category than Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, Tim Drake or Damian Wayne. They will forever be the pupil while Burce will always be the Master.

It’s Batman Vs Batman Beyond In Latest DC Versus


Posted by JenniferP

Dear Captain,

My best friend, Anna, who I’ve known for many years and love very much, is currently irritating the heck out of me and I don’t know what to do.

She hasn’t had the greatest dating history, and through the years I’ve always been there for her to give advice, be supportive or just be a shoulder to cry on.

However, lately there has been this girl she likes, and no matter how many times I encourage Anna she just wont tell her that she likes her. Instead its constant discussion about a text she sent, what picture she liked on instagram, how she tweets, so on and so forth. When she doesn’t answer a text from Anna I get a hundred texts from her freaking out about how she must be wrong and she doesn’t like her anymore and that she’ll never find anyone.

It. Drives. Me. Batty. And I feel like a terrible friend for feeling that way. From what I’ve observed theres like a 90% chance that this girl likes Anna back. But she just wont tell her that she likes her. Instead she comes to me.

My own dating history has proven to me that its better to be rejected and move on then to obsess over things. However I realize that not everyone feels that way.

If I hear about this girl’s social media usage one more time, I’m probably gonna explode. If she knew that I felt like this, Anna would feel incredibly guilty and bottle everything up, which I don’t want her to do. I just want the conversation to have a little bit of change. Theres only so many times you can comfort a friend for not having a text responded to before you don’t know what to say anymore.


Want To Be A Good Friend

Dear Want To Be A Good Friend:

I want you to take the weekend and give yourself permission to ignore all texts from Anna about The Amazing Crush Girl. Respond to anything that is not about that, ignore the rest. Mute her if you need to.

Then, I want you to tell Anna, one time, as gently as you can:

Anna, I think you should tell ________ how you feel about her and I hope she feels the same way. If she doesn’t, she’s really missing out! But the way you are constantly monitoring her social media feeds is kinda creepy, or, at least unhealthy for you, and the way you keep texting me every detail of her posts – sometimes hundreds of texts – is not okay. Please stop sharing these details with me, I don’t like it.

Anna’s not going to be happy with you when you say this. She’ll tell you you’re being a bad friend, why don’t you want to listen to her, you’re selfish, etc. etc. etc. There will be some kind of blow-up or argument because Anna is fixated right now and it’s like you are trying to take her favorite toy away.


Don’t argue with her if she characterizes you as selfish, uncaring, etc. It’s a ‘neg’ designed to get you to prove how caring you are by doing what she wants you to do.

Don’t try to correct the record or convince her or engage more deeply.

Your script, to whatever she says, is some version of “Okay! But are you hearing me? I don’t want to talk about Crush Girl anymore. I need you to stop texting me and filling me in on her social media activity. Can you agree to that?

Then end the conversation pretty quickly.

The next thing she’s going to do is test your boundaries. Your job from now in is to ignore all texts about Crush Girl. Only respond to other topics, and reach out about other topics when you want to talk to her. If you gotta mute her for a while, then do it.

When you do hang out, make it very boring to talk about Crush Girl. “Hmmm….interesting…hopefully you can tell her how you feel soon. So, how ’bout those current events?

She won’t like it, but if you keep not engaging, she will probably get it. And, I know you don’t want her to beat herself up or trigger a shame-spiral or make her feel guilty, but her behavior is not healthy or normal right now and a little bit of “what the hell am I doing?” introspection or perspective from a good friend is not the worst thing in the world?

On a related note:

Hi Captain Awkward,

Long time reader, first time writer!

I am in a polyamorous relationship with “Niles.”

Niles is also dating “Daphne.” Daphne is very sweet, but she spends a lot of time brooding about her ex and other woes. She often just disappears on Niles because her feelings about whatever is going on in her life are so intense. Their relationship currently appears to me to be on this rinse and repeat cycle of romance and withdrawal. I see Niles consistently bend and modify his behavior and needs to accommodate her and most of what he passes on to me about what they talk about is: her, her life, her needs, her feelings, and her ex.

Up until now, I have felt pretty supportive of Niles exploring things with Daphne. And to be honest I think Daphne is a really good person but…I just feel really done with hearing about this behavior cycle, I’m done with the mood shifts that go along with it, and I’m tired of watching Niles just shrink himself to fit into Daphne’s life. Niles sincerely believes that she is worthy of a relationship, and if he just stays the course, he will eventually succeed in showing her how to have a supportive and reciprocal relationship. Like okay, maybe he’s right and sees something I don’t but I dunno ….?? Seems like she’s one of those people who is an amazing person but has trouble with relationships.

Up until this point, I have been more than willing to lend an ear and advice to Niles about how all of this is going with Daphne. We’ve had a lot of deep talks about his feels and what to do and how to relate to her and all that. And now I’ve sort of arrived at this point where I feel like the training wheels have got to come off. It’s been six months of the same stuff with Daphne. He says she’s gotten better but it all smells the same to me. I am worried that I will become the outlet for stuff the two of them need to be hashing out if I haven’t already. Sometimes I worry that my emotional support of him in that dynamic might be making up for what he isn’t getting with her and that seems unfair to me.

Now that I’ve sorta reached my limit, I literally I don’t know what to say anymore to him when he says to me things like, “Oh we stayed up way past when I needed to sleep talking on the phone and I am tired and the conversation felt kinda awkward but it was sooo worth it” or “I haven’t heard from her in days but she needs space now and I’m proud of her for finally communicating her needs” or “omg she is so amazing and being with her is so perfectly wonderful… I feel so alive, I simply cannot imagine my life without her” or “she’s not romantic these days.” Obviously I’m hamming it up but only SLIGHTLY. Actually barely.

To me, that wide variety of statements seems…not good?

He and I have talked openly about how things with them are kinda weird sometimes. But he also knowingly marches on and is very intensely committed on doing so because…love.

So them’s the breaks. I respect his choices but I also want to maintain my sanity in all of this because I feel as though I’ve been looped in to everything. I want to quietly withdraw any emotional life support I have been providing for this relationship with Daphne. I love Niles and I don’t think this is really doing much for him even if he can’t see it. He knows what I think and he has acknowledged the validity of what I’m observing but…love. So pushing my opinions on him louder and with more intensity isn’t going to do anything other than create tension between us.

And truth be told, if the roles were reversed, barring actual danger to me that I couldn’t foresee, I probably wouldn’t want Niles coming at me all the time about how much my relationship with Daphne leaves to be desired…even if he was technically correct, I probably wouldn’t be able to really hear it because…love. I don’t think Niles is in any actual danger nor do I think I am.

But, despite the fact that I’m not in danger, things don’t feel neutral-to-beneficial for everyone involved anymore. To me, it feels as though their thing is draining emotional energy more than it’s contributing to it. Niles doesn’t seem to mind the one-sided nature of their relationship too much; so maybe I should stop caring about that? I care for Niles deeply so it’s really hard to not care.

Maybe the thing I should focus on is that lending emotional support for/having to interact with his relationship with Daphne feels draining to me (and to me, writing to an advice column for help counts as “expending emotional energy on the Daphne thing.”).

I wish someone could look into a crystal ball and tell me when things will change for the better. Till then, I need to figure out how to radiate “bland acceptance of the situation without endorsement.” I don’t want to get painted as that partner who “can’t polyamory” but at the same time I’m just totally over the Daphne thing. I also need to figure out reasonable boundaries and ways to cope with the awkwardness in solo interactions with Niles about Daphne, with Daphne by herself, and the three of us.

How do??

Straight Outta Fucks to Give

Dear Straight Outta Fucks:

What would happen if you said something like this to Niles, the next time your time together becomes completely overrun with Daphne-talk:

  • Hey Niles, let me interrupt you – I’ve sort of reached my limit for talking about Daphne and the ups and downs y’all are having right now. But I’m glad to see you! Let’s talk about something else!” 
  • Niles, you’re probably not doing this on purpose, but it feels like all our time together is spent talking about your relationship with Daphne. I’m starting to get pretty uncomfortable with it, and I’d like you to find a different sounding board for your ups and downs with her.
  • The time for talking about Daphne and her feelings is on your dates with Daphne. Right now you’re on a date with me. I’m going to go get a glass of water, do you need anything?
  • Niles, I don’t really care about Daphne or her exes or her feelings about the world. I’ve been trying to be supportive and a good listener, but when does it end?
  • “Niles, this sounds like a conversation to have with Daphne. I’m not really interested in knowing more.” 
  • Hey Niles, sounds like this thing with Daphne is really occupying your thoughts. Maybe we should reschedule our date for another time when we can focus on the two of us?
  • Huh, what do you think you’ll do about that?”

Would the world end?

Is Niles so fragile that he cannot hear the word “no” about this topic?

Would he use your “no” to accuse you of not really caring about him, like, how dare you not be interested in something so important to him?

Would he accuse you of being jealous of Daphne?

Is it worth finding out to never have to hear about her again?

There’s something in here about emotional labor and fairness and balance and time. To me, he is sucking up all the time he spends with you asking you to do emotional labor and listen to him and comfort him and counsel him about another girl he’s in love with. Is that cool with you? I know you’re worried about appearing jealous, but if we changed “jawing about Daphne” to “Reading the 1972 Encyclopedia Brittanica aloud” it would still be uncool of Niles to do if you indicated you aren’t interested. Obviously when we partner with someone, we all agree to a certain amount of “if it interests you a lot I guess it can interest me at least a little bit” but maintaining that deal requires good faith and self-awareness on both sides. Where is it inscribed that Thou Shalt Let Thy Partners Monologue Forever About Shit That Bores You Without Interruption? (Hint: I don’t think that is written anywhere). And, say you were jealous of how much energy he spends on Daphne and how much he expects you to give a shit about her. Where is it written that you can never feel jealous, or pissed off, or annoyed when someone takes you for granted?

He could tell a friend, or a therapist, or a diary, or howl it at the moon. It doesn’t have to be you, at the expense of your own enjoyment of your relationship.

So, here are my suggestions:

  • Who else are you dating outside of the Niles/Daphne sphere? Throw some love and time and energy into that person or people and give yourself some breathing room from Niles. And, go hang out with friends and family. Nurture all of your relationships, not just Niles. He sounds kinda annoying right now and maybe some space will help him work it all out.
  • Speak directly to Niles and tell you that you were once happy to hear about Daphne but you think it’s crossed a line and now you’d like him to stop.
  • Make it very boring for him to talk about Daphne with you. Him: :Big dramatic Daphne tale.: You:Huh. Interesting. I got new dish towels, did you notice them? They really tie the room together.” Do not let him endlessly process this with you.
  • Treat Daphne with a normal amount of polite friendliness but maybe keep it at arms length? It’s not her fault that you know all of her business, and I think what you have here is a Niles problem vs. a Daphne problem, but if you’re not close now maybe you’re not meant to be.
  • Do the three of you need to hang out right now? I’d be a hard pass about that, like, “Have fun, you two, I’m busy!” You asked when things might get better, and I don’t know, but they kinda suck right now, so believe the suck until you see something different.

I would want to know if I were stretching someone’s listening capacity to its limit, wouldn’t you? Not everyone wants that information – “Anna” and “Niles” probably don’t right now because they don’t want anything that will break the spell of the crushes they are involved in –  but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t need to be said. Directness is kindness here.

Moderator note: Please spell out the whole word – polyamorous, polyamory – vs. the abbreviation”poly” here in the future. For more context, read this. It’s been brewing for a while and it’ s time to make it official comment policy moving forward. We’re not changing old threads, and we’re also not debating the change in comments, so if you disagree with the change or have feelings about it you can process it in the forums or your own webspace. Thank you!






Posted by Rich Johnston

Long Beach Comic Con comes to, well, Long Beach at the Long Beach Convention Center from the 2nd to the 3rd of September. And Bleeding Cool has got the full programming schedule for the show. With guests including Gene Ha, Dave Gibbons, Pierre Bernard, Jr, Pia Guerra and, yes Howard Chaykin, it promises to be a comic book blast. Oh and yes, they have a few folk from TV and films and whatnot… take a look and the programming they have in store.



10-11am – Spotlight: MY LITTLE PONY’s Tony Fleecs

LBCC welcomes MY LITTLE PONY writer/artist Tony Fleecs to this Long Beach Comic Con spotlight panel for pegasisters/bronies/fans of all ages! Legendary comics editor Barbara Randall Kesel interviews Tony, who will show off his art, tell stories, and answer fan questions.

Barbara Randall Kesel, Tony Fleecs

11am-12pm – Comics For Everyone: When “All-Ages” Means ALL Ages

“All-Ages” comics aren’t just for kids – comics can be for everyone without being aimed at little ones. Talented creators Adam Beechen (BATGIRL, TEEN TITANS GO!), Alex Segura (THE ARCHIES), and Chynna Clugston Flores (BLUE MONDAY, SCOOTER GIRL) talk about the challenges and rewards of crafting stories designed to appeal to the widest possible audience.

Ivan Cohen, Adam Beechen, Alex Segura, Chynna Clugston Flores

12-1pm – 40 Years of Star Wars Collecting

2017 marks the 40th anniversary of STAR WARS: A NEW HOPE. Join the Science Fiction Coalition in discussing STAR WARS collecting for a fun and fascinating conversation for newcomers to the franchise or those who have been collecting sicne the beginning.

Shane Holly, Shawn Mullen, David Neuhausel, Jacob Dubi

1-2pm – STAR WARS Prop and Costume Making with the 501st Legion

The 501st Legion and Rebel Legion are screen-accurate Star Wars Costuming Clubs – the 501st, the Bad Guys and the Rebel Legion, the Good Guys. We are approved by Lucasfilm and Disney to bear the name of Star Wars to conduct charity events for thousands of organizations worldwide. We provide costumers for an array of charity events including the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Relay for Life, the Oscars, and more. Come to this panel to learn more details about the clubs’ mission and how you can become a member.

Brandon Jackson, Natalie Benavides, Dawn Bright, Shawn Crosby, Ramey Chanadet

2-3pm – The Writer’s Journey: Breaking in and Managing a Career in Hollywood

This panel addresses what new writers need to do once they have material ready to go out to the masses. The shifting 21st-century digital frontier means the age-old methods of building a career have been rendered irrelevant, and this group of Hollywood screenwriters and graphic novel creators share insider information, publishing secrets, and the professional realities on how to develop your ideas into a viable property and market yourself accordingly. Moderated by 2015 Disney/ABC Writing Program winner and 2014 Eisner Award nominee Brandon Easton (MARVEL’S AGENT CARTER), the panel includes TV producer Geoffrey Thorne (THE LIBRARIANS, Marvel Comics’ MOSAIC), writer Ubah Mohammed (DC’S LEGENDS OF TOMORROW), writer Brandon Thomas (Image’s HORIZON, Lion Forge’s NOBLE) actress/writer Erika Alexander (CONCRETE PARK) and artist/writer Tony Puryear (ERASER, CONCRETE PARK).

Brandon Easton, Geoffrey Thorne, Ubah Mohammed, Brandon Thomas, Erika Alexander, Tony Puryear

3-4pm – Licensed to Tell: Licensed Comics

Licensed comics give creators the chance to play with some of the greatest characters in fiction. Beyond classic work-for-hire superheroes, licensed comics allow creators to tell stories of your favorite characters in movies, television, and more. Join writers Jody Houser (STAR WARS: ROGUE ONE, ORPHAN BLACK), Ryan Parrott (STAR TREK: BOLDLY GO, POWER RANGERS: AFTERSHOCK) and Ron Marz (STAR WARS, SKYLANDERS), and artists Cat Staggs (SMALLVILLE) and Jamie Sullivan (STAR WARS) for stories of the highs and lows of playing with someone else’s toys.

Jody Houser, Ryan Parrott, Cat Staggs, Ron Marz, Jamie Sullivan

4-7pm – Pierre Bernard Jr. Figure Drawing Panel

An LBCC favorite returns, as artist Pierre Bernard Jr. (LATE NIGHT WITH CONAN O’BRIEN) showcases his artistic chops and teaches beginners of all ages the secrets of life drawing (supplies – and models – provided) in this fun and interactive lesson. Find him in Artists’ Alley (table #D32) to learn this years’ theme and begin the lesson and then join him and his modeling crew for a group session.

Pierre Bernard Jr.

11:30am-12:30pm – Fanbase Press Presents: Things that Go Bump in Horror Comics

We all enjoy a good scare, whether sitting around a campfire sharing ghost stories or in a darkened cinema watching alien species hunt their prey. Join writers Bryant Dillon (SOMETHING ANIMAL; IDENTITY THIEF) and David Lucarelli (CHILDREN’S VAMPIRE HUNTING BRIGADE), artist Megan Hutchison (WILL O’ THE WISP), INVADER ZIM’s Dave Crosland, and the HIGH MOON team of David Gallaher and Steve Ellis as they share what inspires them to write and illustrate horror in the sequential art medium, the challenges and benefits they face while working in the genre, and what they foresee in the future of horror comics.

Michele Brittany (Fanbase Press Editorial Manager), Bryant Dillon, David Lucarelli, Megan Hutchison, Dave Crosland, David Gallaher, and Steve Ellis

12:30-1:30pm – Extreme Studios 25th Anniversary Celebration

It’s the 25th anniversary of Extreme Studios, and four veterans of the glory days – Matt Hawkins, Todd Nauck, Shannon Eric Denton, and Norm Rapmund – share stories of their groundbreaking studio and the unforgettable era that changed comics for decades to come.

Matt Hawkins, Todd Nauck, Shannon Eric Denton, Norm Rapmund

1:30-2:30 – Comics On the Edge of Forever: STAR TREK in the Age of Discovery

With William Shatner at Long Beach and a new STAR TREK TV series premiering in just a few weeks, some of the best of modern Star Trek comic book writers and artists come to LBCC to celebrate the ever-expanding final frontier. Writer/producer Mark A. Altman (FREE ENTERPRISE, THE LIBRARIANS) welcomes Ryan Parrott, Scott and David Tipton, J.K. Woodward, and cartoonist Malachi Ward to The Bridge.

Mark A. Altman, Ryan Parrott, J.K. Woodward, Scott Tipton, David Tipton, Malachi Ward

2:30-3:30 – Howard Chaykin Spotlight

Writer/artist Howard Chaykin’s work includes DC Comics’ first miniseries, THE WORLD OF KRYPTON, the original STAR WARS adaptation and ongoing series for Marvel Comics, and an unforgettable string of revolutionary series and miniseries, including AMERICAN FLAGG!, THE SHADOW, TWILIGHT, and BLACK KISS. Over the past decade, he’s created projects for Marvel, BOOM!, and Image, most recently THE DIVIDED STATES OF HYSTERIA at Image and THE NEWSBOY LEGION AND THE BOY COMMANDOS SPECIAL for DC Comics as part of the publisher’s Jack Kirby centennial tribute. We’ll go deeper than the highlights in a rare spotlight panel, with a boisterous Q&A.

Howard Chaykin

3:30-4:30 – Galaxy Quests: The Humor of STAR TREK (and beyond!)

Humor was always an integral part of the original STAR TREK, but the influence of its comedy has permeated popular culture in new and unexpected ways. From SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE to GALAXY QUEST, THE BIG BANG THEORY to FREE ENTERPRISE to THE ORVILLE, and even BREAKING BAD and MAD MEN (come see for yourself), our panel of Treksperts, comedians, and filmmakers discuss comedy in and about STAR TREK. Join David A. Goodman (executive producer, THE ORVILLE, FUTURAMA), Dave Rogers (director, THE OFFICE and THE MINDY PROJECT), Daren Dochterman (visual effects supervisor, STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE – DIRECTOR’S EDITION), Roger Lay (producer, THE ALIENS ATE MY HOMEWORK) and moderator Mark A. Altman (writer/producer, FREE ENTERPRISE, THE LIBRARIANS) as they discuss the lighter side of Trek.

Mark A. Altman, David A. Goodman, Dave Rogers, Daren Dochterman, Roger Lay

4:30-5:30 – Writers’ Room: Where do Storytellers Come From?

Four writers with very different career paths share their origins and discuss their newest projects. Writer/producer Sandy King Carpenter, animation and comics writer Adam Beechen, actor/novelist Neo Edmund, and comics and video game writer Tony Bedard tell their stories.

Sandra King Carpenter, Adam Beechen, Neo Edmund, Tony Bedard

5:30-7 – The Video Games
What if the fate of your favorite video game characters rested in your hands? Take control as they take the stage in THE VIDEO GAMES, a parody of THE HUNGER GAMES. The tributes participating in the Battle to the Death have been substituted for video game characters from all the popular video game franchises. Princess Zelda, Queen of the Console, is celebrating the 64th Annual Video Games and needs the audience’s assistance (through social media) to ensure that this year’s Games are bigger, badder, and bloodier than the year before! By voting for their favorite characters, the audience will to alter the course of events throughout the performance. It’s a different show every night as iconic pixelated heroes and villains, such as Donkey Kong, Lara Croft, the Master Chief, and more compete to win the coveted title of Player One.

Jared Pixler and David Stolworthy


10-11am – Cosplay Survival Tactics

Spending all day in a costume can be exhausting both physically and emotionally. Join Beauty and the Beard Cosplay and The San Diego Stitches Cosplay Repair Team as they provide tips and tricks to survive a day in cosplay from start to finish including self-care and emergency repairs.

11am-12pm – Aliens & Creatures of Cosplay

Special guest star Keaghan Ashley from FACE OFF! Aliens and Creatures of Cosplay will discuss the process of using prosthetic make up such as sculpting, molding and castng techniques to create advanced cosmetic effects as well as cover the basics of body painting and airbrushing techniques. Displays will be provided and attendees are invited to interact with a Q&A session after.

Crystal Rose Creations, Nikki Bee, Amelia Ramirez-Eller, Ashley Kamali-Jones, Keaghlan Ashley

12-1pm – Creating a Character with Make Up Effects

Make Up Effects Artist, Jeff Barkley, will demonstrate how to use premade prosthetics to create your cosplay character. Joined onstage by Cosplayers: Trey Barkley (Sparrows Flight), Desiree Preston (Enasni Volz), Lexi Smith, and Sean Schaefer.Make Up Effects Artist, Jeff Barkley, will demonstrate how to use premade prosthetics to create your cosplay character.

1-2pm – Plus Size Cosplay: Love the skin you’re in!
Being plus size in the world of cosplay is often shunned and ridiculed we say no more! Our panelists will discuss how to work with posing, constructing, and rocking your cosplay to the next level while being plus sized.

2-3pm – Anyone Can Cosplay

Four very different cosplayers discuss whhy they joined the cosplay community, what keeps them in it, and where its taken them. Panelists focus on the idea that there is no right or wrong way to cosplay, and anyone can be a cosplayer.

Angi Viper, Linz Stanley, Kelly Rose Curtiss, and Chris Riley

3-4pm – Fashion Show Panel

Do you love fashion? Want to learn the tips, trick and how tos? Are you aspiring to be in the fashion industry? Do you already work in the industry and want to grow your business & network? We would like to welcome you to “How to Design Geek: Fashion Design” where 6 of our Geek Fashion Designers of LBCC Fashion Show 2017 will open the doors of fashion in the geeky world. The designers will be discussing the inspiration, how to master that perfect instagram shot, steps to building your business from the ground up, how to make your impact in the industry, and many more!

Stephanie Sandmeier, Robin Walker, Lisa Heredia, Jen Egermeier, Elizabeth Yada, Samantha Peltz, Camille Falciola

5-6:30pm – Cosplay Contest Pre-Judging

7-8:30pm – Cosplay Contest Hosted by Bernie Bregman and Nicole Marie Jean

10:30-11:30am – Geeks Got Your Back

Anti-harassment has become a hot topic within the geek community over the last several years. Whether it is anti-harassment policies or grassroots awareness (such as Cosplay Is Not Consent), more and more geeks are looking for ways to make the yheir community a better place to everyone. Come join us as we discuss ways in which we can all just be a little more excellent to each other.

Tina Beychok

11:30-12:30pm – Playing Well with Others: Creators on Collaboration

Three acclaimed creators who have worked solo AND with others discuss the differences between being the solo name above the title and sharing the creative responsibilities, and you get to be a part of it! Join Howard Chaykin (AMERICAN FLAGG!, THE DIVIDED STATES OF HYSTERIA), Gene Ha (TOP TEN, MAE), and Dean Haspiel (THE RED HOOK) for a freewheeling conversation.

Howard Chaykin, Gene Ha, Dean Haspiel

12:30-1:30pm – Writing for Video Games: The Real Behind the Virtual

While stunning game play and graphics are the sizzle of a video game, story and characters make the difference between a fad and a franchise. Three writers – Shawn Kittelsen (INJUSTICE 2), Tony Bedard (AGENTS OF MAYHEM), and Jon Callan (RAW DATA) – share how they put their skills to work in some of your favorite games in a panel moderated by Cryptozoic co-CEO John Nee.

John Nee, Tony Bedard, Shawn Kittelsen, Jon Callan

1:30-2:30pm – The Expanding Universe of Video Games

Story in video games is frequently extended into prose publishing, graphic novels, tabletop games, and merchandise. Cryptozoic co-CEO John Nee moderates an extraordinary panel with writers Marv Wolfman, Flint Dille, Shawn Kittlesen, and Francesca Smith, all of whom have experience telling stories that expand narratives beyond the original games.

John Nee, Marv Wolfman, Flint Dille, Shawn Kittelsen, and Francesca Smith

2:30-3:30pm – Filipino Americans in Comics and Animation

Filam Creative hosts this unique panel that will take a look at the contributions of Filipino Americans in comics and animation. Join special guests Whilce Portacio (Creator of Bishop, WETWORKS, artist on X-MEN, X-FACTOR, and smany more), Leo Partible (animation and comic-book writer), Van Partible (creator of JOHNNY BRAVO), and other special guests as they talk about the history of Filipinos in comics/animation, their own contributions to the arts, how they got their start, and much more.

Whilce Portacio, Leo Partible, Van Partible

3:30-4:40pm – Pitch, Pitch, Pitch: How to Sell Your Story

You have an idea for a story but nothing more. You have a fleshed-out idea, but don’t know how to cut it down to a size an editor will even CONSIDER reading. Join comics writer and editor Alex Segura (the DARK CIRCLE line), writer/editor Shannon Eric Denton (Alan Tudyk’s SPECTRUM), and editor Barbara Randall Kesel for advice and anecdotes about how to give your story the best chance of success in the brutal world of pitching.

Barbara Randall Kesel, Shannon Eric Denton, Alex Segura

4:40-5:30pm – Creating the Perfect Portfolio

Eisner Award winner Pia Guerra (Y: THE LAST MAN) joins acclaimed writer and editor Barbara Randall Kesel to help aspiring artists understand what makes for the perfect portfolio: how to prepare and choose art that best showcases their talent in a way to show prospective editors or clients just what they’re capable of.

Barbara Randall Kesel, Pia Guerra

5:30-6:30pm – Women on the Dark Side

A great success at LBCE and Comic-Con International: San Diego returns to Long Beach! Not all female artists/creators are about unicorns and glittery vampires and silly pseudo-bondage. Some women create truly dark and challenging art and content, with just enough humor and whimsy to counterbalance all that darkness. Whether it’s comic books, novels, or art, these are some of the women who are creating content that connects with the deeper, darker side of all of us.

Barbra Dillon (Fanbase Press), Susan Lee (WRAITH OF LOVE, SHADOW OF THE KNIGHT); Madeleine Holly-Rosing (BOSTON METAPHYSICAL SOCIETY); Janet Joyce Holden (ORIGIN OF BLOOD series, CAROUSEL); Christie Shinn (PERSONAL MONSTERS, SEPULCHRE)

11am-12pm – NASA’s Dawn Mission

What do TIE fighters and Dawn have in common? Is there a Hoth-like planet hidden in the main asteroid belt? Find out the answers to these questions and learn more about the Dawn spacecraft, which has been orbiting the dwarf planet Ceres since March 2015. In this talk, follow along with Dawn’s journey through time to explore some of the largest objects in the main asteroid belt and learn about the engineering behind the mission and the science that’s come out of it, including all of the latest mission updates!

Keri Bean- Doawn Science Planning & Sequencing (JPL)

12-1pm – Teenage Rover-13 Years on Mars

The Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has been exploring the surface of Mars for over 13 years now. What exactly has this plucky, solar-powered rover been doing? How do you drive a Mars rover? Is Opportunity experiencing the temperamental teenage years? Come find out from multiple team members how the rover is doing, what it’s been up to, and how they control the day to day life of Opportunity.

Doug Ellison – Engineering Camera Payload Uplink Lead, Curiosity and Opportunity Mars Rovers (JPL), Keri Bean – MER Tactical Uplink Lead (JPL), Ashley Stroupe – Curiosity/Mars Science LaboratoryRover Planner, Mobility-IDD Lead, Opportunity/Mars Exploration Rovers (JPL), Tanya Harrison – Director of Research, Arizona State University NewSpace Initiative, Mike Seibert – Rover Driver and Lead Spacecraft Systems Engineer for Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity(JPL)

1-2pm – Virgin Orbit: Expanding Access to Space from Long Beach to Orbit

Small, affordable satellites are revolutionizing the way we explore space and study our home planet-but only if they can find an affordable, reliable way to launch into orbit. Virgin Orbit is developing LauncherOne, a new dedicated small-satellite launch vehicle. In design and construction in Long Beach, LauncherOne will be air-launched from a 747 and deliver satellites for space-based

Matt Wierman – ‎Propulsion Design & Analysis Engineer (Virgin Orbit) , Hannah McCallum – Propulsion Design and Analysis Engineer(Virgin Orbit)

2-3pm – Exploring the Science & Technology of Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory

As far as mad scientists go, William “Willy” Wonka is as delightful as the come, but behind that wry smile, and impish behavior lies the mind of a chemical & technological genius. We will be discussing the Everlasting Gobstopper, the candy that never gets smaller, Fizzy Lifting Drinks, a liquid concoction that makes you float, Wonkavision, which sends physical objects across space, and finally the Great Glass Elevator, a transportation device that can take you anywhere with the push of a button. Come listen as Dr. Michael Dennin – World Renowned Physicist, Ben Sieper – Rocket Scientist and Daniel J. Glenn – Analytical Mastermind explain all these miraculous innovations, and show how his chocolate factory has more in common with DARPA than a conventional confectioner’s creation.

Daniel J. Glenn – Analytical Mastermind, Dr. Michael Dennin – World Renowned Physicist, Ben Sieper – Rocket Scientist

3-4pm – So you want to build an R2D2?

Did you know there’s a whole club of people dedicated to building R2-D2 and the other droids of Star Wars? Come learn the basics and see what it takes to build your own Astromech droid from folks that are building their own!

Members of the R2D2 Builders Club

4-5pm – Kids Can Cosplay: From the Parents Perspective
Join Kids and parents as they discuss all the hot buttons that come with kids and cosplaying.

Jay Holliday, Mireille Hundric, Julliette Hundric, Richard Morales, Gabriela Morales

5-6pm – Live Painting with Camilla d’Errico

Join Pop Surrealist painter and author Camilla d’Errico for a live painting demonstration of techniques from her how-to-paint book, Pop Painting. Have Q&A with Camilla while a new painting comes to life using her signature, eco-friendly, water-soluble Holbein Duo oil paints.

Camilla d’Errico

Arthur Suydam will be drawing free sketches for the first 150 kids ages 14 and under who come to his table on Sunday between 11 and 4.


11am-12pm – Hey! Kids’ Comics!

The acclaimed creators of some of today’s best comics for kids (grown-ups like them, too) take part in a memorable LBCC panel. MY LITTLE PONY’s Tony Fleecs, educational comics editor and artist Jason Rodriguez, and recent Eisner Award nominee Norm Harper (RIKKI) talk about telling stories for some of comics’ most hard-to-please readers.

Tony Fleecs, Norm Harper, and Jason Rodriguez

12-1pm – Publishing Your First Comic Book

Screenwriter Rylend Grant (whose first comic title, ABERRANT, will be released by Action Lab Entertainment this winter), hosts a panel of creators–many with backgrounds in film and television–who share how they developed their comic book ideas and ultimately found publishing success. Learn how to find a penciler, inker, colorist, letterer, and designer; submit material to publishers; and figure out how to position your project in today’s marketplace!

1-2pm – The Art of Character Design

What goes into designing your favorite characters? Creators and producers from the worlds of comic books and animation draw back the curtain on how they design characters that capture the imaginations of readers and viewers. Dave Crosland (INVADER ZIM), Logan Lubera (Nickelodeon, Loot Crate), artist Jamie Sullivan and animation producer Craig Miller take part in a wide-ranging discussion.

Dave Crosland, Logan Lubera, Craig Miller, Jamie Sullivan

2-3pm – Politics and Pop Culture

How do politics and popular culture depend on each other? An in-depth discussion explores political satire, comedy sketches, and the world of politics and explores what the interconnections mean for government and pop culture going forward.

Karina Perez, Travis Wester (actor, SUPERNATURAL), now part of his local govt, Adam Yenser (writer, ELLEN), Estevan Montemayor (Los Angeles City government spokesperson), comic-book and prose writer Amanda Deibert.

3-4pm – Am I Allowed To Like Anything? Loving What You Love in the Golden Age of Geek

For fans of superheroes, science fiction, animation, and cosplay, it’s a golden age. But hand-in-hand with geek domination of the popular arts has come a very hostile environment for being openly enthusiastic about your favorite things. You like the “wrong” Doctor Who? You dug VALERIAN? You think the new season of TWIN PEAKS is the best one? Join creators (and unashamed fans) David Gallaher, Jon Callan, and more for a guilt-free celebration of the things LBCC and its attendees love most.

Ivan Cohen, Todd Nauck, David Gallaher, Jon Callan

11am-12pm – Everything ARCHIE

With the hit CW drama RIVERDALE raising awareness, Archie and his friends are more popular then ever. What can fans expect from the publishing side of Archie Comics? The company’s SVP – Publicity and Marketing, Alex Segura, hosts a lively discussion that spotlights the publisher’s latest offerings, including his own new ongoing series, THE ARCHIES, featuring the biggest rock band in Riverdale going on tour!

Alex Segura

12-1pm – Dave Gibbons Spotlight

The acclaimed co-creator of WATCHMEN and THE SECRET SERVICE (adapted into the movies KINGSMEN and KINGSMEN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE) and artist on dozens of others takes part in a wide-ranging conversation about his career, including some of his famous collaborators, his work on superhero titles in America and the UK, and the upcoming return to print of his creator-owned title THE ORIGINALS in 2018.

Dave Gibbons

1-2pm – Music in Comics

Music in comics can sometimes be a losing proposition (hard to crank up the volume), but these creators have made it work. Join writer/artist Chynna Clugston Flores (BLUE MONDAY), writer Alex Segura (ARCHIE MEETS RAMONES), and Burger Records founders Sean Bohrman and Lee Rickard for a freewheeling playlist of a panel.

Chynna Clugston Flores, Alex Segura, Sean Bohrman, Lee Rickard

2-3pm – Comics and Cuba: Separating Fact from Fiction

In May of this year, 11 members of the U.S. comics creative and business community participated in the C3 Havana Edition conference, meeting with 50 Cuban comics creators at Havana’s National Animation Studio for an in-depth discussion of topics relating to comics, animation, video game development, storytelling, and film production. Now Martha Donato, President of MAD Event Management (which runs Long Beach Comic Con) and many of her fellow C3 Havana participants – among them writer Ron Marz (WITCHBLADE, DREAD GODS), artist Dennis Calero (MASKS, X-FACTOR), and Cryptozoic co-CEO John Nee – discuss the trip and the changing landscape of U.S.-Cuba relations in the creative arts going forward.

Martha Donato, Dennis Calero, Ron Marz, Matthew Wierman, John Nee, Marty Glynn

3-4pm – Talking Deadpool

Long Beach Comic Con welcomes two of today’s top artists – Scott Koblish (DEADPOOL) and Todd Nauck (SPIDER-MAN/DEADPOOL) – to share stories of drawing the exploits of the beloved movie-star “Merc with a Mouth.” What’s the most disturbing thing they’ve ever been asked to draw? Did anything cross the line? Secrets WILL be revealed!

Scott Koblish, Todd Nauck

11:30am-12:30pm – Fashion Show Panel

Do you love fashion? Want to learn the tips, trick and how tos? Are you aspiring to be in the fashion industry? Do you already work in the industry and want to grow your business & network? We would like to welcome you to “How to Design Geek: Fashion Design” where 6 of our Geek Fashion Designers of LBCC Fashion Show 2017 will open the doors of fashion in the geeky world. The designers will be discussing the inspiration, how to master that perfect instagram shot, steps to building your business from the ground up, how to make your impact in the industry, and many more!

Linda Heredia, Robin Walker, Jen Egermeier, Elizabeth Yada, Steven Lopez, and Camille Falciola

12:30-1:30pm – The Many Colors of Cosplay

This panel will lead a discussion about being a person of color in cosplay. Panelists will give their own stories about how being a part of the cosplay community has changed their lives in both negative and positive ways. Panelists will give their own tips and tricks regarding manners concerning cosplay equality and accepting everyone in all fandoms as family.

Crystal Rose Creations, Brandon Jackson, Dawn Carroll, Francesca Taylor and Kylee N.

1:30-2:30 – Armor Making

From basics of foam to working with plastics, metal and more! Learn tips and tricks to enhance your hobby or become a trade professional with our panel of experienced prop makers from both the cosplay and TV/Film worlds!

Tony Swatton, Edgar Mayoral from Cosplay Melee, Igor Pinski of Mr. Pinski Props

2:30-3:30pm – Cosplay and Gaming

What do gaming and cosplay have to do with eachother? Technically, any character from any media can be cosplayed! Join us to discuss cosplay and how it relates to the gaming world!

Harley Quinn SLC, Zabracus and Trina

3:30-4:30pm – Making the Con with Krystle Starr

Making the Con is a new reality show with Orlando Jones & Krystle Starr powered by the Cosmunity app. This panel talks about Con experiences and is audience participation! Making the Con will share the real-world stories of individuals on their way to the biggest con in the world! Cosplayers, Artists and SUPERFANS with unique stories of how their passion has changed the course of their life! There will be a short video talking about “Making the Con” with Cosmunity, and how YOU can be a part of it!

Krystle Starr

11am-12pm – Making a Scene

How do writers and artists work together to create compelling scenes that build the narratives of your favorite comics? Acclaimed writer Jody Houser (FAITH AND THE FUTURE FORCE) and THE ONLY LIVING BOY team of David Gallaher and Steve Ellis share their favorite scenes and tell the stories behind their stories.

Jody Houser, David Gallaher, Steve Ellis

12-1pm – The Webcomics Advocates Present: The Webcomics Gathering

Join the Webcomics Advocates for our twice-annual gathering of webcomics creators and fans. This is your chance to learn about creating webcomics, network with other artists, and maybe even pitch your webcomic idea in front of a room full of potential new readers!

Phil Vecchio, Brendan Creecy, Madeleine Holly-Rosing, Patrick Scullin, Eddie DeAngelini

1-2pm – All Comics Are Digital: The Present and Future of Digital Comics

As readers increasingly look at comics on computers, tablets, and smartphones, and artists create pages without using “real” pencils and inks, is the comic-book medium changing? Join comics innovators Dean Haspiel (ACT-I-VATE, TRIP CITY), D.J. Kirkbride (AMELIA COLE, THE ONCE AND FUTURE QUEEN), James Gilarte (VENGADOR), and the team of David Gallaher and Steve Ellis (HIGH MOON) for an insightful discussion of what comes next in digital comics.

Dean Haspiel, D.J. Kirkbride, James Gilarte, David Gallaher, Steve Ellis

2-3pm – Show AND Tell: Solo Storytelling

Three cartoonists with very different styles and backgrounds share anecdotes, examples, and insights into the challenges of telling stories without a partner. Chynna Clugston Flores (BLUE MONDAY), Dean Haspiel (THE RED HOOK), and Malachi Ward (FROM NOW ON) take the stage for a sure-to-be-memorable LBCC panel.

Chynna Clugston Flores, Malachi Ward, Dean Haspiel

3-4pm – From Sydney to Long Beach: Self-Publishing with James Gilarte

All the way from Sydney, Australia, comes James Gilarte, who over the past decade has written and produced an astonishing array of comics, including VENGADOR, A FRACTURED MIND, SPOOKS COLLEGE, and TIME VOX. In this eye-opening panel, James shares the story of his career and provides a first-hand look at his creative process, revealing tips of the trade on how to breathe life into new characters.

James Gilarte

11:00a-12:00p – Cassini’s Grand Finale as Told from a “Spacecraft Pilot’s” Perspective

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft is the first robotic explorer to orbit Saturn, and it began the first in-depth and up-close study of Saturn, its moons, and its rings in 2004. Since then, Cassini’s onboard science instruments have returned an abundance of scientific data that has led scientists to astonishing discoveries. After nearly 20 years of spaceflight, the Cassini mission is coming to a triumphant end on September 15, 2017, when the spacecraft will plunge into Saturn’s atmosphere, from which there is no return. Cassini’s ultimate sacrifice will ensure the protection of Saturn’s ocean worlds, and will give scientists a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to collect Saturn atmospheric data during the final plunge. Luis Andrade is a member of the Spacecraft Operations team and the lead Guidance, Navigation, and Control (GNC) engineer in charge of Cassini’s final sequence of commands. In his presentation he will share what it has been like to “pilot” Cassini for the past four years, and the challenges of maintain control of the spacecraft during the plunge, all the while resisting Saturn’s shearing winds which will ultimately destroy the long-lived robotic explorer.

Luis Andrade – Lead Attitude Control Engineer in charge of developing Cassini’s final sequence(death plunge into Saturn)(JPL)

12:00p-1:00p – Deep Space Navigation at NASA/JPL

NASA has long explored the solar system and beyond with their robotic spacecraft since the beginning of the space age. Starting with the first interplanetary probe Marine 2, NASA missions have a record of reaching all planets in the solar system including Pluto, now designated as a dwarf planet. In this talk, Yu Takahashi from JPL will give an overview of how the teams at JPL navigate their spacecraft in deep space. He will particularly draw on his experience from Dawn and Juno missions, which are missions to dwarf planet Ceres and Jupiter.

Dr. Yu Takahashi – Juno Navigation Engineer(JPL)

1:00p-2:00p – Earths Above: from Mars and Titan to Exoplanets

Join Dr. Bonnie J. Buratti, a leading planetary astronomer, on this personal tour of NASA’s latest discoveries. Moving through the Solar System, she underscores NASA’s search for life outside the Earth, from Mars and Saturn’s giant moon Titan – an Earth in deep freeze – to newly found exoplanets. She gives vivid descriptions of landforms that are similar to those found on Earth but that are more fantastic. Active gullies on Mars, huge ice plumes and tar-like deposits on the moons of Saturn, hydrocarbon rivers and lakes on Titan, and nitrogen glaciers on Pluto are just some of the marvels that await you. Discover what it is like to be involved in a major scientific enterprise, with all its pitfalls and excitement. Dr. Buratti shows how science fiction has both motivated many rocket scientists and anticipated and propelled discoveries. Once her talkis over, Join Dr. Buratti in the Space Expo booth space for a book signing!

Bonnie J. Buratti, PhD, Senior Research Scientist – Principal Scientist and Supervisor: Comets, Asteroids, and Satellites Group (JPL)

2:00-3:00p – Comics, Games, and VR: The Future of Transmedia

The biggest company in Virtual Reality is entering the world of comics, and they’re here to talk about why! Survios’ smash hit Raw Data was the first VR game to reach #1 on the Steam Global Sales charts. Then this summer the company debuted seven comics stories set in the world of Raw Data. Now they’re joined by the book’s creators, as well as some experts in transmedia, to talk about what one has to do with the other!

Jonathan Callan – Senior Writer (Survios), Emmett Furey – Transmedia Expert,Nick Bragg – comics writer (television’s “The 100”), and Eric Carrasco – comics writer (BOOM! Studios’ Maze Runner Graphic Novel, CW’s “Supergirl”), Anne-Mortensen Agnew (“VAST, “Thunderbirds Are Go!”)

3-4pm – NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope

Join some of the very engineers working on NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope, a successor to the Hubble Telescope and 100 times more powerful, as they give out the latest news and updates. The James Webb Space Telescope is humanity’s newest, greatest tool to observe the universe, allowing us to look further into space than we ever have before.

Engineers working on NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope

4-5pm – Writers You Should Know: Animation

The next generation of comics and animation writers answer your questions on what it takes to build a career when you’re starting out. People at the top may not know how to succeed in the current market. But these writers tackle the tough issues, like: how to get your first credit, how to transition into being a full-time writer, and how to convince employers to take you seriously!

Exclusive! The Long Beach Comic Con 2017 Panels And Programming Schedule


Posted by JenniferP

Hi Captain,

I have a friend (I’ll call him “Dave”) whom I haven’t seen in person in years, but am still in touch with on social media. Several months ago, he messaged me to tell me that he liked me and would like to go on a date sometime. I didn’t know him very well at the time, but I liked him enough to at least give him a chance. Though the date never happened, we did message each other regularly for a while.

I’m very involved in local theater (we met doing a show together, actually–I’ve stuck with theater since then and he hasn’t), and he mentioned at one point that he’d like to see me in a play sometime. I had just been cast in a show at the community theater in the town where we both live, so I gave him the details for that.

Well, it eventually became apparent that Dave is not a guy I’m interested in dating. I don’t think he’s a bad person; I’m just not attracted to him. At all. When I told him this, he put on the whole “but I just want to be friends, can’t we just talk and hang out as FRIENDS?” act. He then continued to keep sending flirty messages while denying that he was flirting. (“Can’t I tell my friend she’s pretty?” “Can’t I let my friend know when I’m thinking about her?”) I stopped responding to his messages and blocked him from viewing everything I post.

Now the aforementioned community theater play I’m in is just a few weeks away from opening, and I’m very worried that he’s going to show up. (I am very annoyed at my past self for telling him I was in it!) Anyone can buy a ticket, so I can’t exactly tell him he can’t come. At this theater, the actors always do a little meet-and-greet with the audience after the show, so if he does come I’m going to have to interact with him. My anxiety about this is sort of ruining what would otherwise be a really fun and exciting thing. What do I do? Help me, Captain!


Exit, Pursued by Creepy Dude (She, her)

Dear Exit,

This sucks and I’m sorry, but (good news!) you don’t have to interact with him if he shows up and you don’t have to suffer in silence or in secret.

Talk to the theater and to your friends at the theater. “I had an acquaintance who had a crush on me. He got a little stalker-y and wouldn’t take no for an answer, I’m afraid he’s gonna come to the show. He might not come, but it would make me feel more comfortable if we could put some safety measures in place just in case.” Ask the theater what they’ve done about situations like this in the past. Ask the box office to let you know if “Dave” buys a ticket in advance. You’ll still be freaked out and upset that day if you know he’s coming, but you’ll know what’s coming and you can tell the stage manager that you’ll be nope-ing right out of the post-show meet & greet that night.

If he shows up spontaneously, you can still handle it especially if you have the stage manager & fellow cast & crew to help you. Decide on a code word. You can say the code word if you spot him, and they can enthusiastically meet & greet him – all cheerful and friendly –  without raising a fuss while you slip out the side door.

Dave, if you’re out there reading this, nobody wants you to go to that show and everybody sees through your wisp of plausible deniability for your pushy behavior. SHE DOESN’T LIKE YOU.

Letter Writer, I’m wishing you a good show, free of having to see this dude.

This is a good callback to the discussion about persistence from earlier this week. If someone is saying no to you, and you keep pushing, it’s not just a “missed connection.” It can start to become a fear/safety issue very quickly. Is Dave dangerous? I don’t know for sure, but he’s demonstrated that he doesn’t take “no” for an answer, so he’s made danger part of the Letter Writer’s calculus and ruined what should be a fun thing.











Posted by Vivian Kane

Yesterday, the New York Times published an op-ed titled “I Voted for Trump. And I Sorely Regret It.” If you’re already rolling your eyes at that headline, oh just wait.

The piece isn’t just written by a Trump voter, by the way. It comes from Julius Krein, who, last February, founded American Affairs, a pro-Trump website designed to give his campaign “intellectual heft.” He’s been called, in all earnestness, “Trump’s wunderkind.” This man didn’t just cast a single vote for Trump, he worked hard to legitimize his entire campaign.

So now that Krein has finally realized his “optimism was unfounded,” you’ll have to forgive me for not giving one single shit.

Krein throws out some examples of things he couldn’t possibly have been expected to know would be bad for America, including Trump’s “needlessly inflammatory” statements on immigration. Funny, I seem to remember a whole lot of people foreseeing those as being dangerous. The same goes for those typical politicians’ “strict ideologies” he eschewed. We call those “The Constitution” and “civil rights & liberties.”

Krein wrote about the denial he was in before and since the election, which he sees so clearly now. “For months, despite increasing chaos and incoherence, I have given Mr. Trump the benefit of the doubt,” he writes. “’No, I don’t really think he is a racist,’ I have told skeptical audiences. ‘Yes, he says some stupid things, but none of it really matters; he’s not really that incompetent.’ Or: ‘They’ve made some mistakes, but it’s still early.'”

Now, he concedes, “It’s no longer early. Not only has the president failed to make the course corrections necessary to save his administration, but his increasingly appalling conduct will continue to repel anyone who might once have been inclined to work with him.”

To which literally everyone who saw this coming from the very start replied:

You don’t get a fucking cookie for being sorry now that you contributed to the growing chemical fire that is the state of our country. You supported a candidate because he told you you would rise up by stomping down many, many others, and now you’re surprised that that vicious ideology is affecting your life too? No one is going to wipe away your tears and thank you for allowing us to see them.

What’s possibly even more amazing and maddening than these “I was so wrong” pieces are the “How could we possibly have known??” people.

I’m sorry, WHO COULD HAVE PREDICTED THIS? That’s a serious question?? Gee, let’s start with:

To anyone who actually feels bad for voting for Trump: good. You should feel bad. Because it was not unforeseeable, and you had to ignore a hell of a lot that the rest of us were standing here, waving our arms, and pointing at for a good long while.

If you’ve realized the error of your ways, that’s a fine start, but you don’t get praise or sympathy and the New York Times sure as hell shouldn’t be letting you believe otherwise.

(image: Shutterstock)

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Posted by Rich Johnston

We told you that Marvel Legacy #1 by Jason Aaron, Esad Ribic and a bunch of friends was likely to have a bunch of exclusive retailer variant covers. And so it is coming to pass.


And here’s the first off the blocks. The sketch pencils for a three-cover wraparound-and-foldout cover for Marvel Legacy #1 by J Scott Campbell, featuring the 1 Million BC Avengers, the sixties Avangers and the modern-day Avengers, exclusive to Midtown Comics.

J Scott Campbell’s Exclusive Retailer Variant For Marvel Legacy #1 – The Pencil Sketch


Posted by Jude Terror

Donny Cates signed a Marvel EXCLUSIVE contract exactly one month ago. And we learned he’d be taking over Thanos from Jeff Lemire just two days later. Today, Cates revealed that he already suffers nightmares from his job.

We already know most of the titles Marvel is publishing in November, but that hasn’t stopped Marvel from slowly doling its November solicits out to hungry media partners to use as EXCLUSIVE web content. Amongst todays various titles being rerevealed is Thanos by Donny Cates and Geoff “Jeff” Shaw. But in a shocking twist for a publisher-sanctioned fluff interview, Cates bared his soul about how the writing process on Thanos has affected his life at home.

“I’m not exaggerating whatsoever when I tell you this book has given me nightmares,” Cates told website IGN in a candid interview about the upcoming comic. “It’s been hard to shake this one off when I clock off for the day. ”

Cates also shared some details on what the series will be about, and it sounds like it’s fulfilling Legacy’s promise as a breath of fresh air from the recent doom and gloom of books like Secret Empire, where the bad guys win and everyone suffers. “We’re going to show you what happens when Thanos wins. And just how…horrific that would really be. For everyone.”

Check out the full interview at IGN for more info and actual context for the quotes we cherry-picked for this article. Thanos hits stores in November.

Ask the most powerful beings in the Marvel Universe how they fear the universe will end, and in their most honest moment, they will answer with two words… THANOS WINS. Now… see what happens when he does.

New Marvel Hire Donny Cates Says Writing Thanos Comic Gave Him Nightmares


Posted by Charline Jao

Rick and Morty and Community‘s Dan Harmon wants to make it absolutely, totally clear that he’s not a nazi. Also, “2/3 of the country doesn’t want to be political. It’s not politics to say you’re not a Nazi! It’s like taking a shit. You just do it or you explode! You die if you don’t shit and you die if you don’t say you’re not a Nazi. Fascism is a fucking cancer, it will eat your country unless your country kills it.” Is that clear enough for everyone? (via Pajiba)

  • A painful, but brutally honest read from a black man about how his relationship with his Trump-supporting mother led him to the realization that sometimes, blood is just blood: How Trump Ruined My Relationship With My White Mother.” (via The Root)
  • Deadline reports that Gemma Chan has joined Mary Queen of Scots and my interest in the film has just gone up 1000000%.
  • John Boyega, who is the actual worst at keeping secrets, reveals which celebrities have a cameo in The Last Jedi. The answer is pretty exciting. (via Collider)

Look at these awesome people standing up for what’s right and not eating cake.

  • Don Hertzfeldt World of Tomorrow is an animated masterpiece, and it’s getting a second installment. The title, is appears, is World of Tomorrow Episode 2: The Burden of Other People’s Thoughts. (via Indiewire)
  • Ever wonder what a system error looks like on augmented reality? Check it out on Geekologie.

That’s it for what we saw today, what did you see?

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Posted by Teresa Jusino

Many of us were distraught by the news that Netflix had cancelled Sense8. I have a very personal connection to that show, and I know that it provided some much-needed representation for a wide swath of people. There has been talk among fans about the hope that another network or platform will step up to the plate and save the show, as has happened for so many others. Now, one has: and it’s porn site, xHamster.

As reported by IndieWire, xHamster stepped up to the plate and offered to produce a new season of Sense8, seeing similarities in their sex-positivity and flouting of mainstream norms. In a statement, the site said:

“We’re huge admirers of the show, as are many of our fans. Obviously, for both us and the Wachowskis this would be a big move, and the logistics would need to be worked out. This isn’t just about switching a network, this is about switching the way a show is delivered, and thus how the show is produced and what is produced. Does it open up possibilities for the storyline if the show is moved away from a mainstream corporation and onto a platform that’s not sex-phobic? Does a mainstream audience feel comfortable moving to a platform known for adult? What we admire about the Wachowskis, and about the show itself is that it takes risks. I think that we’re a nascent network, and I’d love to hear what they would do with us.”

They also make the point that xHamster has more views than a lot of mainstream publications of any sort, and that the site would be a “natural fit.”

They’re not wrong about a lot of that. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that xHamster has more views than even Netflix (though we’ll never really know for sure, since Netflix is cagey about their numbers), so the show would likely get to more people as a result. They’re also not wrong about there being lines that even a streaming service like Netflix wouldn’t cross with regard to sexuality.

There’s a big part of me that would love for this to be how Sense8 gets another season: in a completely subversive way that goes around what has become mainstream television (streaming isn’t necessarily the adventurous place it was anymore).

However, a big part of what makes Sense8 so amazing is that it presents the sex and inclusion it presents as normal. It shows sex as it is between partners of all types. The orgies between the sensates, while hot, aren’t really done for titillation so much as they allow the characters to be vulnerable with each other in ways most people could never be.

Unlike porn, which is all about fantasy fulfillment and seeing who can do the most athletic and strenuous positions, the sex in Sense8 is grounded and real. The only thing that makes it “groundbreaking” or “shocking” is that we don’t usually see sex between certain types of people represented anywhere. It would be different if xHamster were starting its own streaming service for non-porn, sex-positive content. That could be interesting. But nothing like that was mentioned.

So, if I were Lana Wachowski, I’d be hesitant about accepting an offer from xHamster, not because porn is inherently disreputable, but because the fact that they both have open attitudes about sex doesn’t make them the same. Having a porn site present Sense8 would make it seem as though the sex on Sense8 were a fetish, or not real. Something to be consumed as a fantasy rather than a depiction and representation of something true.

This is likely all moot, as Netflix owns Sense8, and likely won’t give up the rights to it so easily. However, if anyone is going to deliver a new season of Sense8, I would hope that it is a platform or network that would seat Sense8 alongside other mainstream shows, because it deserves to be there.

What do you think? Does it matter how Sense8 S3 returns, or is it simply enough that it exist in the world? Let us know your thoughts below!

(via Indiewire, image: Netflix)

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