We say good-bye to the Comics Buyer’s Guide, spread the word on how fans can help Peter David’s family with their medical expenses, revisit 1998′s Blade, muse on the implications on comics of the new tech demoed in this year’s CES, and more in this week’s NEWS Round-up.
Comics Buyer’s Guide to cease publication after 42 years
The Comics Buyer’s Guide, long an industry stand-by for reliable and in-depth comics news and commentary, is set to close shop in March, according to a post on CBGExtra.com subsequently relayed on the official Comics Buyer’s Guide Twitter account:
Established in February 1971 by 17-year old comics fan Alan Light as The Buyer’s Guide for Comics Fandom—a free, tabloid-format newsprint publication offering comics news, previews, and reviews—the Comics Buyer’s Guide laid down the modern blueprint for comprehensive comics coverage, bridging the gap between comics fanzine and trade press within the first few years of its existence and eventually becoming a notable source of creative material in its own right: a veritable who’s who of artists such as Jack Kirby, Milton Caniff, Neal Adams, Bernie Wrightson, P. Craig Russell, John Byrne, Frank Thorne, Paul Chadwick, among others provided original and reprint covers throughout the 1970s, and the magazine offered original comic strips such as Fred Hembeck’s Dateline, as well as commentary from Mark Evanier (who looks back on the publication in a blog post here) and Peter David (who recently started reprinting his old But I Digress… columns on his blog).
Comichron‘s John Jackson Miller, who worked for the Comics Buyer’s Guide and its spin-off publications between 1984 and 2007, has written a comprehensive retrospective of the magazine in this blog post.
How you can help Peter David and his family
Even though we have health insurance we have co-pays and the like. And since this stroke fell at the end of the year, we have all the new co-pays to deal with (I can honestly see those of you who have had to deal with this nodding your heads). And there are things that the insurance company just won’t cover (more head nodding). So we are at the beginning of what is going to be a very expensive year even though we are only 4 days in.
The most direct way [to help us] is to buy his books from Crazy 8 Press (via ComicMix) or from Amazon or Barnes and Noble websites. These are books that he gets the money from directly and the most per book.
His current Crazy 8 Press books are:
Sick of vampire books? Movies? TV shows? Yeah. So are we. Sick of the entire unlife of vampires? Yeah. So is Vince Hammond. Unfortunately, Vince is in it up to his (wait for it) neck. Because Vince is a young vampire hunter who lives with his vampire hunter mother in an entire community of vampire hunters, who in turn are part of a cult of vampire hunters going back all the way to the French Revolution, which many believe to be an uprising of the poor against the rich but was actually a massive purging of vampires from the French nobility (hence the guillotine)
A powerful ruler who’s considered by many to be simple-minded and vacuous and has serious father issues. A no-nonsense, polarizing woman who favors pants suits and pursues dubious agendas involving social needs. A remarkably magnetic leader of men with a reputation as a skirt-chaser. A scheming, manipulative adviser who is constantly trying to control public perceptions. A man seen as the next, great hope for the people, except there are disputes over his background and many contend he’s not what he appears to be.
George W? Hillary and Bill? Karl Rove? Obama?
Try Arthur Pendragon, Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin, and Galahad.
Whatever you think of the state of today’s politics, The Camelot Papers shows you just how little matters have changed in the past thousand years or so. The Camelot Papers presents a fresh perspective on Arthurian legend by using modern day sensibility and combining it with a classic tale to bring a new insight into iconic characters.
These are science fiction mixed with mythological creatures and the fate of the Universe hangs in the balance. Big epic sweeping books with those great characters that Peter is famous for writing.
There are Print on Demand for all these books if you want a paper copy rather than electronic.
If you already have these or can’t purchase them for whatever reason, you can still help us a lot by getting word out all over the Internet about how they can help Peter. I am asking every blogger and people who have access to an audience to spread the word.The more we sell of these books, the easier it will be for us to pay the bills as they start to pour in.
Buying his other books does help but that is very long term and isn’t much per books but it does help especially the Marvel graphic novels he has written.
Peter and Kathleen’s 11-year old daughter Caroline (with Kathleen typing) wrote of her experience dealing with her father’s stroke here. It’s a touching reminder of how much children really absorb about the world around them, and how resilient they can be in the face of tragic life events.
David Goyer on the legacy of 1998′s Blade
IGN: Looking back at the road of the modern day comic book movie, I really think you have to look at Blade as the starting point.
Goyer: I know, I feel like people have forgotten that a little bit. It’s like, “Batman Begins was the first one.” I’m like, “No, I’d kind of put Blade there first.” Prior to that, I also think it was the first time a comic book figure had been taken seriously. Prior to that, you had Dick Tracy, you know what I mean? Things that were just all primary colors and that was people’s perceptions of what a comic book movie should be.
Blade was certainly a successful and influential film in the putative comic book movie genre, and its entertainment value remains undiminished fifteen years on from its cinematic debut, but we’re not so sure we’d agree with Goldman that it was the starting point of a trend of “serious” comic book films. The Blade of Goyer’s screenplay was quite altered from the British vampire-hunter created by Marv Wolfman and Gene Colan for Marvel Comics in 1973 and the movie was not at all an adaptation of any extant comic-based stories.
In our opinion, Alex Proyas’ 1994 film adaptation of James O’Barr’s The Crow signaled the arrival of the modern comic book movie four years before Blade due to its wide-ranging and lasting pop culture impact and its creative adherence to the source comics material—Proyas was able to show that strong comics material would be able to stand on its own as the primary basis for a screenplay and a film’s visual design and characterization.
That Proyas’ film had a noticeable influence on the aesthetic applied by director Stephen Norrington on Blade is also quite telling of its import—and in a somewhat ironic twist, Norrington was even once attached to write and direct a planned remake of The Crow.
Looking in on CES 2013 and what it means for comics
The annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is in full swing in Las Vegas, serving as a showcase for potential technology trends for the next twelve months. The proliferation of new devices, from versatile “table” PCs to innately waterproof smartphones to ultra-thin flexible OLED screens to new E-Ink displays have all manner of practical and theoretical implications for the future of digital comics and webcomics. It seems like we are that much closer to being able to reasonably replicate the visceral experience of reading paper comics with digital devices. But as interesting as looking at all the new tech is, though, we still believe that the future success of digital comics and webcomics will be predicated less on getting in on bleeding-edge consumer technology and more on new, adaptive models of distribution and monetization that will take advantage of the new business ecosystem sprouting in the interstices of the World Wide Web, the ubiquity of Internet-enabled devices, and online advertising—for instance, buried amidst the hubbub over new tech was an announcement from Radical Publishing about its rewards program tie-up with the Dynamics ePlate credit card device, showing the publisher’s forward-looking stance at finding new, indirect revenue streams.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Josh Brolin, Chris Meloni in Sin City sequel
After months of being rumored as being in the running for roles in Man of Steel, Justice League, and Guardians of the Galaxy, it has finally been confirmed in a Deadline.com exclusive that Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s next comic book movie role will be as Johnny in Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, the upcoming sequel to 2005 film adaptation of the Frank Miller comics. The report also states that Josh Brolin will be taking over the role of Dwight McCarthy (played by Clive Owen in the first film) and Chris Meloni has been cast as one of the film’s villains.
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For is directed by Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller, and is scheduled for an October 4, 2013 release.
Warner Bros. to publish a Marvel Comics video game
TT Games recently announced that it will be developing a Marvel Comics-themed LEGO video game, which seems somewhat strange if you follow the video game development and publishing industry: TT Games is wholly-owned by Warner Bros.—which also owns Marvel Comics rival DC Comics—and has produced two quite well-received LEGO video games featuring Batman and other DC superheroes.
Does this mean a LEGO Marvel/DC crossover game might appear in the near future? We’ve learned never to say never here in the NEWS Round-up, but we’re not holding our breath for that to happen. The fact that a Warner Bros.-owned studio is developing a game featuring Marvel Comics characters seems to us to simply be an incidental result of TT Games holding the LEGO video game development rights, and it just so happens that LEGO holds licenses to both DC and Marvel characters. Still, we can hope, can’t we?
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes will be available beginning Fall 2013 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, and Windows PC, as well as the Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS, and PlayStation Vita.
FX hopes to debut The Strain, Powers in 2014
FX president John Landgraf has confirmed that his network’s adaptation of the The Strain horror novels by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan is on track for a 2014 television debut.
In a separate interview with IGN‘s Eric Goldman, the television executive, besides providing more detail about how the network plans on playing out The Strain‘s narrative over multiple seasons (possibly three to five years), also provided updates on the long-in-development small-screen adaptation of Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming’s Powers.
Our review of the recent Dark Horse Books trade paperback collecting the first part of The Strain comic book adaptation by writer David Lapham and artists Mike Huddleston and Dan Jackson can be read here.