Grotesque Anatomy
Tuesday, September 30, 2003
  Maybe An Assembly Line Would Help My Output
Added some more links under the Bloggers section:  Elayne Riggs (How could I forget her?  I've been reading her missives ever since I began lurking on UseNet years ago); Johnny Bacardi (who in addition to doing the comics thing covers a lot of other pop culture as well); Jennifer de Guzman (Editor-in-Chief of SLG Publishing); Shawn Fumo (of course); and Eve Tushnet.  I think I'd read Eve's blog once or twice before when other bloggers linked to her comics commentary (which is very good), but for some reason her blog didn't really stick in my mind til now.  She made an impression on me when I decided that I should follow up yesterday's assertion that Jim Henley had "demolished" all arguments against same-sex marriage by actually reading the objections Jim was addressing.  I still don't find any of Eve's arguments forceful, but at least she writes well and avoids the all-too-common (and, unfortunately, still all-too-accepted) homophobic gay-bashing.  I'd like to respond to some of her comments in more detail, but I think I'll wait until she's organized her "tangled comments" (as she puts it) before I jump in.  (Plus, the more I read her entries, the more I realize I'm wading into an argument/discussion that's been going on for quite some time:  There are threads spiraling outward to several other sites from Eve's blog, and they all look interesting.  I might get bogged down in "research paralysis" and never be able to respond adequately.  I wonder how all the other participants in the ongoing conversation would feel if I just decided to play the role of the loud, obnoxious party crasher?)

Inadvertent Insult of the Week:  Augie De Blieck Jr., writing about the demise of "CrossGen, The Dream" (as opposed to the demise of "CrossGen, The Company"):
"The bullpen concept was a creative dynamo that glued the creative teams together and allowed for the sort of assembly line interaction that you don't get anywhere else in comics today." [emphasis mine]
I think I know what Augie was trying to get at—that the studio environment of CrossGen allowed creators to feed off each other creatively (Paul O'Brien and MaxLeibman have both addressed this point as well)—but I don't think referring to CrossGen's setup as an "assembly line" is going to paint a cheerful picture for anyone.  More likely, it'll feed into CrossGen critics' complaints that CG's titles were soulless "Comics by Committee."  (A criticism which may have more than a grain of truth to it, since Mark Alessi and (recently terminated COO) Gina Villa reportedly came up with broad story guides that all writers are expected to follow.)  I suppose the positive side of the "assembly line" remark is remembering how (until the recent financial difficulties) CrossGen had a (as far as I know) perfect shipping schedule for a little over three years.  In an industry where books repeatedly miss shipping dates (and rescheduled shipping dates, and re-rescheduled shipping dates, and so on), CG's long, unbroken stretch is quite an accomplishment.  And I suppose the bullpen arrangement greatly helped CG in keeping those deadlines.

Just for the record:  Right before I was going to post, I realized that visitors unfamiliar with my reading list might think from the above comments that I was a "CrossGen basher."  Well, maybe I still am (I don't think I am, but I'll leave that up to the reader to decide), but I do read their entire line via Comics on the Web.  Of course, reading their comics this way means I'm behind everyone else who gets the floppies (hey, when am I not behind everyone else in terms of comics reading?), but it does let me continue to read all their stuff for very cheap now that the Compendia are no more. 
Monday, September 29, 2003
  Blogging by Bullet Point
Wow, guess my wife was wrong when she said not much would happen while we were on vacation for a week.  Of course, she was mainly referring to work and family & friends—how it seems as though time remains "normal" for those stuck at home while it slows down and expands for you on vacation (Weren't we gone for month or two?  No?  Only a week?)—not to the weird world of comic books news, but I'll admit I didn't expect to have much to catch up on when I got home.  So I was a bit surprised to find that:
There was also some positive news:
And then there was a lot of interesting blogging going on (which I'll probably never properly comment on because I'm feeling so behind at the moment, but that shouldn't stop you from checking it out):
Oh yeah, and Marvel's solicits for December 2003 went up while I was away.  I know I promised to sift through them and make with the snark, but there's just nothing in these solicits that inspires me to comment.  About the best I can come up with is a variation of an old Monty Python line:  "I can't think of anything worse than calling them 'typical Marvel Solicitations.'"  They're just so awfully dull:  Dull cover images and dull copy.  About the only cover image that came close to moving me was the cover for CABLE/DEADPOOL #2 (Rob Liefeld will probably once again win the coveted "Grotesque Anatomy" award based on this image), but why waste energy coming up with funny digs about how atrocious this cover is when it's already been done (and is probably much cleverer than anything I would have come up with anyway)?  Once again my pull list remains Marvel-less.

Finally, I should be getting my monthly dose of comics sometime this week, so I'll finally be able to comment on the comics everyone else was talking about last month.  Man, no wonder I'm always feeling behind... 
Friday, September 19, 2003
  Out of Office: 09/20/2003-09/28/2003
In hindsight, this probably wasn't the brightest bit of planning I've ever come up with: Launch a new blog days before I go on a week-long vacation to Paris. In my defense, I really didn't think anyone would be reading this thing, at least not until I had the BIG CONTEST promoting the blog (more on the BIG CONTEST when I get back). So what happens? Seasoned bloggers such as Alan David Doane, Dirk Deppey, and Sean Collins all go linking to my blog. Bastards! Now I'm going to feel guilty for letting the blog go without updates for a week. Thanks a lot, guys. (Sarcasm aside, big thanks to Alan, Dirk, and Sean for linking to my blog: I've been reading their stuff for quite awhile now, and I'm touched to hear Dirk refer to my blog as "excellent." Wait til Dirk finds out Power Company was one of my favorite comics of 2002...) 
  JLA/AVENGERS: Does Joe Blow Care?
Noticed this morning that Dirk Deppey linked to my comments on Michael Hutchison's comments on the order figures for JLA/AVENGERS #1. I'd just like to clarify that I have no insider contact on the matter either; I'm just speculating away. And as reader HS emailed to tell me, my speculations may be way off: It could be we're not seeing mainstream coverage of JLA/AVENGERS simply because the mainstream media aren't interested in the "event":
I read your 200k snippet, and although your argument seems well-founded, it makes a major assumption: That all comics are interesting to mainstream media. The reason Sandman got so much mainstream coverage was likely because the writer is well-known among the mainstream/book media. The first thing editors think about when deciding what to cover is how meaningful the topic will be to their readers; in most cases these are the Average Joe. Although JLA and Avengers are familiar to us, they’re not to the average person. That puts one strike against it. If it were Superman vs. Spider-Man, it would likely be a different story. So, yes, Marvel’s old maxim—it’s the characters that matter—still holds true. These characters collectively as a team don’t matter to the people reading or writing for mainstream press. The only exception: If something groundbreaking happened in the arc, ie. A major DC or Marvel character were killed or a major character were to permanently change universes (imagine if Batman stayed in the Marvel universe).

The other strike against it is that it’s a comic. Again, like the topic, the format isn’t something that is widely embraced by the average person. Right now, comics are considered a niche form of entertainment/publishing. Only recently has Entertainment Weekly begun reviewing comics (and video games) on a regular basis. That’s a huge step toward comics becoming an accepted form of mainstream entertainment. Yes, the occasional comic gets reviewed in something like USA Today, but they’re not dedicating ongoing space to them. Until comics make up a significant (or at least noticeable) portion of the entertainment industries enormous revenues and shake the perception that they’re read by geeks of all ages, they will continue to be the ugly stepchild who only gets to come out for the occasional debutante's ball. It’s much the problem that video games faced several years ago. No one outside the enthusiast publications wanted to cover games. However, the high-profile launches of consoles and the open endorsement from celebs like Justin Timberlake and Julia Roberts changed that, and the perception of the industry. Comics need something similar to spark media’s ongoing interest.

Finally, consider that the demographic for a publication like USA Today is women, age 25-54. Yes, CNN and Forbes are more targeted to men, but likely not the men who are reading comics. Again, the topic needs to be appealing in some way to the reader, and the people in the demographics for these publications aren’t going to care about JLA/Avengers.

So, it’s likely that Marvel/DC did try to get coverage, but they were turned away at the door by the press. It’s just not news. At least until someone famous says they’re reading it.

These are all good points, but of course I have some thoughts in response:

I don't know if my assumption was so much that all comics are interesting to mainstream media as it was that this particular comic should be interesting to mainstream media. Though perhaps even that assumption is flawed. As HS points out, the titles "JLA" and "Avengers" aren't likely to mean much to the average Joe or Jane. Although there's a cartoon version of JLA on Cartoon Network, it goes by the name "Justice League." And "Avengers" probably still brings to mind that crappy movie remake with Uma Thurman and Ralph Fiennes. I think any mainstream coverage of JLA/AVENGERS would have to focus on the individual Big Names (Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, etc.) rather than the teams. As Michael Hutchison wrote in his original piece: "The general public loves these characters, which is why their movies do so well. Superman wielding Thor's hammer and Captain America's shield is something even the public at large thinks is cool." It's still a big assumption, yes, (does the general public know who Thor is, much less what his hammer looks like?) but I figure it couldn't hurt to try.

As for comics' continued status as the ugly red-headed stepchild of entertainment, I don't know how to gauge comic books' current public perception. I'm sure the notion that "comics are for kids" is still widespread (even though most modern comics aren't for kids anymore (exception: manga)), but I also feel as though the mainstream media covers comics much more frequently than it ever has before. Perhaps my perception is due to the fact that I'm more aware of the coverage—I read the online comics sites, so I see the links to all the stories on comics. Maybe mainstream coverage of comics isn't as common or pervasive as I think.

And if HS is reading this, I'd like her to clarify one point. You wrote: "The other strike against it is that it’s a comic. Again, like the topic, the format isn’t something that is widely embraced by the average person." Were you referring to the format of the "floppy," i.e., individual issues of a comic; or were you referring to the general "format" of comics overall (i.e., comics as a medium)? If the former, what do you think about my suggestion that Marvel and DC market the collected edition of JLA/AVENGERS? Do you think casual readers will be more comfortable with a format that more closely resembles "real" books? If the latter, I guess all I could offer in response is the general trend of graphic novels being a growth market in mainstream bookstores and comic shops alike. Although I honestly don't know how much of those sales are for "capes & tights" comics. From everything I read, it seems as though manga are the real powerhouse in graphic novel sales.

I can imagine a scenario where Marvel and/or DC approached the mainstream media with this story and they said "Eh, thanks, but we'll pass. We're more interested in this Sandman book." I believe I've read accounts online where fans wondered why certain series or "events" weren't promoted in mainstream publications, and the answer given was, "We tried, but they weren't interested." However, given the fact that Marvel and DC aren't even advertising JLA/AVENGERS on their own sites, it also seems likely that they're simply not marketing it very aggressively. Perhaps because it would require a coordinated effort between the two rivals?

Thanks to HS for writing (I'm hereby starting the official campaign to get her to write her own blog), and to Dirk Deppey for linking my comments within his larger (and more interesting) entry about sales of Sandman: Endless Nights and other stuff in the direct market. If you haven't read his piece yet, do so now. It's a great read as usual, tying together a number of interesting threads in a fresh and cohesive manner. 

  Best. Press Release. Ever.
AiT/PlanetLar Doesn't Sell Out of Anything
Thursday, September 18, 2003
  Only 200K?
Over at Monitor Duty, Michael Hutchison raises some good points about the sales figures for JLA/AVENGERS #1. Although I still think 200K is an impressive number for the direct market in its current state, Michael's right that there hasn't been much mainstream attention for this series yet. Perhaps if Wonder Woman were sporting another new haircut, or different shoes or something—perhaps then the mainstream media would have shown interest in this story. (The only mention I've seen of JLA/AVENGERS #1 in the mainstream press was a short review in the subscription-only supplement to Entertainment Weekly, "Listen2This," where I believe it received an A-.)

It does make me wonder why DC and Marvel aren't doing more to promote this series. Perhaps they're waiting for the eventual collection to hit bookstores? If so, that might actually be smart. Easier to direct someone with casual interest in the series to the nearest bookstore than to get them to a local comic shop, which might not even have copies of every issue left. And the mainstream attention (USA Today, CNN, Forbes) for the Sandman: Endless Nights hardcover has been impressive, so perhaps DC and Marvel are hoping to go that route once they have something resembling an actual book in their hands. Although Kurt Busiek isn't quite the household name that Neil Gaiman is. This might be a case where Marvel's old maxim "it's the characters (not the creators) that matter" is fitting. 

  Shawn Fumo for President
Noticed today that blogger Sean Collins is waging a one-man campaign to get Shawn Fumo to start a blog. Check out Sean's pleas here and here. I'll second Sean's call for Shawn to start his own blog. I've been running across posts from Mr. Fumo on various boards and blogs lately, and his comments are always insightful, thoughtful, and polite (a true rarity in many comic book message board circles).

Shawn Fumo: Your hobby needs you. Will you answer her call?

(And if we can convince Shawn to do a blog, we should then see how he feels about running for the Democratic party's nomination.)  

  GYO 1 Review
GYO coverHigh expectations can be a curse. I came into GYO, the latest horror manga by creator Junji Ito, expecting to be disturbed by what I read. Ito's previous manga—UZUMAKI, TOMIE, and FLESH-COLORED HORROR—were all genuinely unnerving. GYO, on the other hand, is unsatisfying.

The premise of GYO—legged fish begin emerging from the sea—sounded silly when I first read it, but then again, how scary does a comic about a town's growing obsession with spirals (UZUMAKI) sound on the face of it? (What, they all become obsessed with Spirograph?) Alas, my first reaction proved to be accurate in this case: GYO just isn't scary. Perhaps the cultural connotations are different in Japan, but for me, seeing a shark crash though someone's door is amusing rather than frightening, since it brings to mind the old landshark skits from Saturday Night Live.

panel from GYO 1
Because the horror isn't as strong in GYO, the weakness of characterization becomes more evident. Looking back at Ito's earlier works, it's probably safe to say that characterization was not a strong suit of those works either. The characters were there mainly to serve as fodder for the events that befell them. When the events aren't very frightening, the sparseness of characterization becomes glaring. The players in this tale all feel like stock characters from a campy 50s horror movie: The stalwart, stoic hero; the hysterical female; the mad scientist and his lovely assistant. Even the visual depictions feel tired, since the characters resemble protagonists from Ito's earlier works. The character who receives perhaps the greatest amount of attention in this story is the girlfriend, Kaori; much space is devoted to depicting just how whiny and selfish she is. Unfortunately, this also means that she becomes an entirely unlikable character. By the time misfortune struck Kaori, I found myself thinking that her boyfriend should just leave her. Instead, Tadashi sticks with her, risking his life in the process. I felt like a cross between a Springer audience member and an obnoxious movie-goer in a bad horror flick, mentally shouting out: "Leave her, you fool! She never treated you well, and now she's going to get you killed!!"

I've been reflecting on my different reactions to GYO and Ito's other works, trying to figure out what makes one horror story work while another one fails. I'm not sure I've arrived at a definitive answer yet, but here are some of the thoughts I've come up with:

If you've been hearing good things about Junji Ito and are looking to try out some of his horror manga, I'd recommend passing on GYO and checking out UZUMAKI instead.

Second Opinion: Randy Lander from The Fourth Rail seemed to like GYO much more than I did, giving it a 9/10 rating.

Misc. Details: Published by Viz; 200 B&W pages; $12.95 US. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2003
  Prophecy or Foreboding?
Prophecy Magazine poster "In Bloom" by artist Gabriel GuzmanI received a surprising package yesterday: It was an oversized envelope from Prophecy Magazine. For those who don't know, Prophecy Magazine is supposed to be a cutting-edge new sequential art magazine. I heard about Prophecy several months ago when I was looking for a new comics anthology to try out. Someone on some message board mentioned Prophecy, so I went to their website, checked out some of the sample art, and liked what I saw enough to sign up for a special discounted promotional subscription. That was back in January 2003. Originally Prophecy was scheduled to launch in April, but that date came and passed with no launch. According to Prophecy's website, "Prophecy Magazine was set to launch in early 2003. We had originally planned the launch for April of this year. However, due to the unfortunate circumstances of the war and the ensuing social and economic instability, our executive team has decided to postpone launch until early fall of this year."

When in doubt, blame the war and/or economy. (Prophecy goes on to justify the delay in much more detail: "As you can imagine, the timing of our launch is of the utmost importance, especially as we are attempting to cross over from the direct comics market to the mainstream American public. It is essential that the social and economic climate be in our favor to capture an enthusiastic public, ready and willing to purchase a hot, new commodity. Due to the relatively unexpected decision to go to war, the U.S. economy has been highly unstable and consumer spending has reflected a volatile market environment. As such, this is a very risky time to launch an unproven, expensive, national magazine; we cannot risk coming into the market at the wrong time. It is paramount that Prophecy Magazine succeed for the good of the American comics industry." While I can sympathize with the complexities of trying to launch a new publishing venture in today's economy, the self-aggrandizing statements are a bit much. I didn't realize I was subscribing to a magazine with a savior complex, although I suppose the name 'Prophecy' could have been a warning sign.)

Anyway, I'd pretty much given up hope of ever receiving something from Prophecy, but now they had actually mailed me something. It felt a bit thin to be the magazine, though, especially when their site proclaimed that each issue would range "from 96 to 120 pages" in length. I opened the envelope, and sandwiched between two pieces of cardboard were three posters. One was a gift I received for being an early subscriber, and the others looked like ads for the magazine. There was also a letter apologizing for the delay in sending the poster(s), and for the delay in launching the magazine. No specific date was given for when the magazine will finally come out.

I'm still hopeful about Prophecy Magazine, both in terms of actually receiving it one day and in terms of its content if it does arrive, but I think they need to tone down the hype a bit. Looking over some of the quotes on their site, I actually found myself growing annoyed. I think excessive hype bothers me in general, whether from Wizard Magazine or a new publisher of "cutting edge" sequential art.

Perhaps the most grating blurbs on the site were the ones referring to Prophecy Magazine as "an award-winning collector's item!" and "a guaranteed collector's item in years to come." I see that Prophecy isn't above playing the speculation game in order to move some copies of its magazine. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2003
  JLA/AVENGERS #1 Tops 200K
Newsarama is reporting that retailer orders for JLA/AVENGERS #1 broke the 200K mark. In today's market, that strikes me as a good number for a prestige-format book carrying a $5.95 price tag, but I'm also wondering how many copies of this comic have actually made it into readers' hands. Out of curiously I searched for "JLA/AVENGERS" on eBay and I got back several results for lots offering multiple copies of #1. I'm worried a lot of those numbers might be due to speculators buying copies in bulk, thinking they can sell copies at a profit. Since the first issue was printed by Marvel, perhaps there is some money to be made in gouging fans who missed a copy of #1 at their local shop. But I don't remember reading anywhere that JLA/AVENGERS #1 has sold out at the publisher level, so couldn't on-the-ball retailers still get more copies of the first issue? 
  DC Solicits for December 2003
DC has released its solicitations for December 2003. I'm sure you can find them several places, but I always prefer viewing them at ToonZone: No annoying popups. No gaudy flashing banner ads. Just the solicitations, and they're even broken up into nice little sections.

Anyway, on with the snarky comments:

Snarky comments aside, I do enjoy DC's solicits much more than Marvel's. DC's covers are consistently more interesting than Marvel's, and the copy is generally more readable as well. In the interests of fairness, I'll try to pick through Marvel's next round of solicits whenever they go up. 
Monday, September 15, 2003
  Hurry Up, Order, and Wait
I buy my comics online. To cut down on costs, I have them shipped once a month, which means I get my "new" comics in big batches, and a couple weeks after everyone else has already discussed them thoroughly. It also means that I order my books sight unseen out of Previews months in advance. Because of my arrangement, I've really come to appreciate columnists who scour through Previews to find the good stuff. Often others catch things that I passed over too quickly, and I've found some really good books by trying out others' recommendations. Here are the places I usually look to for advice:

Aside from the books mentioned by others above, the only other new items to catch my eye in this month's Previews were:

DETECTIVE 27, a hardcover OGN featuring yet another Elseworlds take on Batman, except this one doesn't seem to involve any costumes, at least not based on the sample pages shown in Previews. I'm not sure if I've ever read anything by Michael Uslan. The Fourth Rail mentioned that he wrote some backup stories for the Just Imagine Stan Lee... series, which is almost enough to scare me away, but I'm more interested in this for the art by Peter Snejbjerg anyway.

BACK ISSUE #1: The blurb on the TwoMorrows site exclaims that "BACK ISSUE celebrates comic books of the 1970s, 1980s, and today through a variety of recurring (and rotating) departments." The first issue features the timely theme of DC vs. Marvel and includes "an examination of the original JLA/Avengers crossover, revealing why it never happened and featuring unpublished George Perez pages—plus a spotlight on the new JLA/Avengers mini-series!" This speaks to the same inner fanboy that broke down and ordered JLA/AVENGERS despite my original plans to wait for the inevitable collected edition.

RISING STARS OF MANGA VOL 2 GN: I got the first volume from Tokyopop and thought it was interesting in a "Comic Book Idol" kind of way: Before each story, the editors took a couple lines to discuss why each submission was picked for publication. There were definitely some entries that were rougher than others, but it was an interesting experiment overall, so I'll check out the second collection as well.

I was thinking about checking out FULL METAL PANIC and AZUMANGA DAIOH—the first two series from new manga publisher ADV Manga—but I can't find any info about the books on their site, so I'll probably just wait to look at them when they come out.

That's it for this month. Only a little time left before I have to submit my order. I often wonder if I'm really saving money by ordering online, since I probably end up buying more than if I were just going into the store every week. Oh well, at least I get to try out some new stuff at a discount. 

Saturday, September 13, 2003
  Da Goon
Broken Frontier columnist Matt Maxwell has an article up recommending The Goon by Eric Powell. I'd second that recommendation. I preordered The Goon on a whim (I think the art caught my eye), and I've really been enjoying it so far. The book, which comes out bi-monthly from Dark Horse, isn't deep by any means. But as Matt mentions, it's nice to read a comic that is actually funny. I'd suggest getting the first two issues of the new Dark Horse series. DH also put out a TPB collecting earlier Goon stories from Albatross Publishing, but the new series is much better in my opinion.

Here's a review of The Goon #1 I did for Mailordercomics:

The Goon #1Who is the Goon, you ask? Well, everything you need to know about him is contained within the pages of this comic. Basically, he's a big bruiser who fights monsters. Oh, sure, he's got an origin story and everything (beautifully rendered in sketchy sepia tones), but you don't really need to worry about that. All you really need to know is that the Goon is a big guy. And he fights monsters. Zombies, to be particular (or "Slack Jaws" as they're referred to in the story). Oh, and cannibal hoboes. How do the spontaneously-combusting orangutans fit into this story? Ah, heck, just go buy this book. If you like goofy humor mixed with not-so-serious horror, this is the book for you.

I had a lot of fun reading this book. The story is simple, drawing you right in, but it's all the little side details that enrich the comic. Details like the aforementioned orangutans. And the hobo leader, who bears a striking resemblance to a famous folk musician. Even the legal copy on the inside front cover is worth reading. And make sure to stick around for the final page, which contains testimonials by several noted "Comic Icons." Writer/artist Eric Powell is adept at both writing genuinely funny lines and illustrating humorous scenes. And he does the colors for the book as well, although I'm not sure if the colors were truly "funny," so I don't think I can pronounce Powell a true comedic "triple threat."

Trying to place this book on a continuum for the purposes of issuing one of those "if you liked X, you might also enjoy Y"-type recommendations is tough. The Goon reminded me a lot of similar "funny horror books" I've enjoyed recently (such as Steven Weissman's "Yikes" books and Richard Sala's Peculia), although Goon is definitely done in a style more familiar to mainstream readers. The book design, layouts, and art are all more like a traditional superhero comic than the other books mentioned. Goon is also reminiscent of Alan Moore's humor work, such as "The Bojeffries Saga" or the strips in Tomorrow Stories (although comic icon "Alan Moore" does appear at the end of the book to disparage Powell's grasp of the English language, in a nice bit of self-deprecation on Powell's part). If you've enjoyed any of these books, chances are you'll get plenty of amusement out of The Goon.

The Goon also made Entertainment Weekly's "Must List" back in July, and the first issue received an A from one of EW's reviewers.

For more info on The Goon, check out the Dark Horse site or Eric Powell's site

Friday, September 12, 2003
  You Get What You Pay For
First of all, I just want to say up front that I love Newsarama.  If it weren't for Newsarama, how would I get my daily fix of comic book news, previews, press releases, etc.?  But is it just me or are Newsarama's articles becoming more and more unreadable?  Case in point, this recent article analyzing order numbers for August 2003 books.  Look at some of these snippets I've chosen to nitpick out of context:
Anyway, I'm going to chalk this up to me being cranky.  I really do appreciate that Newsarama is doing more and more of these analysis pieces (as opposed to just throwing up press releases on the site), but I think the articles would have more impact if they weren't marred by typos and other errors.   (Cue embarrassing errors of my own.) 
Thursday, September 11, 2003
  Manga Marches On
ICv2 is reporting that Tokyopop is once again expanding its mainstream presence, signing deals to appear in the Books-a-Million chain, Target stores, and airports (through W.H. Smith). Wow. Manga really is going to take over the world isn't it? Or at least the mainstream market for graphic novels. 
  The Fantastic Kurt Busiek

Kurt Busiek talks about Arrowsmith and his upcoming Conan series over at CBR

Wednesday, September 10, 2003
  Hello World

Hello World. (Lame, I know, but it's what I remember from programming classes.) 


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Fábio Moon and Gabriel Bá
James Jean
Mercury Studios
Steve Rude

AiT/Planet Lar
Alternative Comics
Dark Horse
Digital Webbing
Drawn & Quarterly
Lightspeed Press
Raijin Comics
Top Shelf

Anime News Network
Democratic Underground
Human Rights Campaign
Marriage Debate
The Onion
The Raving Atheist
Savage Love

September 2003
October 2003
November 2003
December 2003
January 2004
February 2004
March 2004
April 2004
May 2004
June 2004
July 2004
August 2004
September 2004
September 2006

eBay Auctions (Give old comics a good home)