February 23rd, 2003
In my column this month, I waxed philosophical and talked about an idealistic comic industry based on strong stories and diversity throughout the marketplace in the stores and online. It's a beautiful concept and although it warms my heart, it's definitely not the reality at this stage. So beyond the sequential paradise that I've envisioned, let's start down the road that can lead us to that brighter place, shall we?
Love him or leave him, no one has set the comics world on its ear in the last several years like Scott McCloud. His books Understanding Comics, and its sequel Reinventing Comics have challenged many preconceived notions of what comics are and still might be. Like a general marshalling his troops, McCloud has invigorated discussion and debate, and inspired a host of people to take up their pencils, markers and tablets to become part of the push towards whatever it is that Comics may become.
So, what are they becoming?
Submitted by Jamie Robertson on February 22, 2003 - 13:47
The Online Journalism Review has a great article on the plight of Online Newspaper Syndicates and their failure to make a splash in online comics.
Submitted by Jamie Robertson on February 22, 2003 - 01:32
The interview, conducted by Groth, is from the out-of-print TCJ #137 from 1990. The conversation is offered on MP3 format for download until March 21st. It's a very interesting conversation, especially when contrasted by today's creator owned webcomics.
Submitted by Jamie Robertson on February 21, 2003 - 22:01
The Seattle Times reports that Lynn Johnson's For Better or For Worse will end in four years. It's not a webcomic, but it has earned the respect of many webcomic artists. That's not an easy feat for a syndicated cartoon. The 24 year old strip will end after Lynn's contract with United Media runs out. Go to The Seattle Times for the whole story.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 21, 2003 - 18:21
Moviepoopshoot.com, filmmaker Kevin Smithâ€™s "all things entertainment" site, will be adding "Ted Noodleman â€“ Bicycle Delivery Boy" to its line-up in March. Noodlesman is a weekly strip by creator and writer Jim Keplinger, artist Ryan Ottley, and colorist Ron Riley.
The stripâ€™s protagonist Ted leads an exceedingly active fantasy life based on what he reads as he is waiting for packages to deliver. Ted is portrayed as a lanky, unattractive, greasy-haired geek who imagines himself transforming into all manner of heroes, villains, and genre specific characters. Meanwhile, the rest of the world continues as normal, but is affected by Tedâ€™s odd antics as he peddles his way through the city on his delivery runs.
"We're happy they're joining the site," says Chris Ryall, the site's Editor-in-Chief. "Theyâ€™re a perfect fit with our slightly askew look at pop culture and entertainment."
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on February 21, 2003 - 18:07
BoxJamâ€™s Doodle will celebrate the posting of its 1,000th installment on Monday, February 24, 2003.
Initially intending to call the milestone, â€œA Thousand Doodles That Changed the World,â€ BoxJam was dissuaded by his wife, who noted the innacuracy of it. â€œBesides,â€ she said, â€œit makes you sound like an asshole.â€
BoxJam said, â€œIn all honesty, this is an accomplishment that Iâ€™m really proud of, but especially humbled by. The Webcomic community has been very supportive of my work, and I think more than anything itâ€™s that support thatâ€™s helped me turn something that started out as a hobby into a true avocation. â€“ and while ultimately satisfaction has to come from the inside, encouragement from the outside has been really rewarding.â€
Longtime fan Lee Herold said the 1,000th doodle is a real milestone for a comic that started on a personal Web site in 1999. â€œBoxJamâ€™s Doodle really connects with people, and thatâ€™s very gratifying to the readers,â€ he said. â€œIt shows that what makes a comic strip good is not flashiness, or slick art, but the ability to get somebody laughing and making it look effortless.â€
A book collection of the best doodles will be coming out later this year, and the comic strip will also be featured in a book coming out this summer: "Toon Art â€“ The Graphic Art of Digital Cartooning" (Steven Withrow, Watson Guptill Publications, 2003).
Submitted by Jamie Robertson on February 21, 2003 - 13:39
Steve Troop, creator of the Keenspot webcomic, Melonpool, was just interviewed on the Pulse. A sci-fi parody, Melonpool comes off as a "â€¦ mix between Gilligan's Island and Star Trek." Read the whole Interview!
Submitted by Hyung Kim on February 20, 2003 - 19:19
Is it webcomic Nirvana or the final sign of Armageddon?
There aren't many details yet, but Cafe Press plans to offer CD and Books for print on demand. Like many other things on the Internet, it could be a replay of the California Gold Rush of the Mid 1800s. The only ones who made a killing were merchants selling equipment and tools, not would be prospectors.
Submitted by Leah Fitzgerald on February 20, 2003 - 16:10
Watch for the transcript of Cat's first monthly chat on March 10th when he asks Scott Kurtz what GRAPHOMAXIMO was all about.