** This week saw the passing of two great cartoonists, the legendary Jack Davis and Richard Thompson. In many ways, Davis's cartooning has been ubiquitous during my lifetime. His drawings have been everywhere that in the nearly forty years since "Street Ball" (see above) first appeared in comics, I don't know if I ever realized that it was Davis (even though his signature is quite clear in the Rick Barry panel.) But in my mind, Dr. J. will always be dunking like that and Rick Barry will always be hitting nothing but net. And this is only a small sample of the many, many iconic images that Jack Davis has created over his lifetime.
Thompson is a cartoonist I know more by name than any actual familiarity with his work. Looking at his strips now, I wonder how I missed Cul De Sac and Thompson's cartooning. His recent struggle with Parkinson's disease was well known and caused him to step back from cartooning a few years ago.
Both cartoonists died on Wednesday, July 27th, 2016, and tbe world seems a bit less enjoyable today.
from Philly Streets: Day 2 by Dan Archer
** In case you haven't noticed it yet, The Nib is back. For the past two weeks, they've been covering both the Republican and the Democratic Presidential conventions. There's been some fantastic comics published there since it came back just before the RNC and has quickly established itself as one of the sites to really pay attention to between now and Election Day in November.
** Comic Book Writer Marjorie Liu On How Rejection Shaped Her Writing (NPR)-- Liu's Monstress seems to be one of Image's hits from the past year that looks to contain a lot of Image's DNA in it but from a completely different worldview than most of their books. I have the first Monstress collection on my to-read file and look forward to getting to it.
Liu says she's also tired of seeing television shows that focus on men, or have larger ratios of men to women. Monstress, she says, is a direct response to that, with a world primarily populated with women. "No, men have not been destroyed, there are still men in the world," she says, "but they're background in the same way that women are so often background in stories that are told about men."
** Interview: Blue Exorcist Mangaka Kazue Kato (Anime News Network)-- During Anime Expo in early July, Deb Aoki had the opportunity to interview Kazue Kato, the creator of Blue Exorcist.
That male/female difference, for me, I actually approach male/female, their personalities, pretty much the same. Other than their physical characteristics, I treat them pretty equally. Other than the physical attributes of their different genders, I tend to draw them pretty similarly. So I treat them as human beings with different personality types. As a person, you're a different type of person from other people—that's how I treat them. I don't really split them by gender.** The End, For Now (The Hooded Utilitarian)-- Noah Berlansky has announced that, for the time being, his website The Hooded Utilitarian is being put on hiatus. Over the years, HU has featured some inspiring, controversial and head-scratching writing. I don't know if I've ever been able to peg down the character of the site, other than trying to find new buttons to push to inspire thought and anger. Go and dig through the archives to find some fascinating pieces by a great collection of writers.
** Go, Read: Abraham Riesman Talks To Bruce Timm About Material In Killing Joke Adaptation (The Comics Reporter)-- It's worth taking the time to dig through everything that Tom Spurgeon publishes on CR because just when you're not expecting it, he unleashes great nuggets like this:
I am interested that anyone would feel compelled to adapt The Killing Joke, which was to serious graphic novels of the 1980s what "Runaway Train" was to the grunge music era...Thanks to Spurgeon, I had those lyrics in my head for days.
** Happy 75th Birthday, S. Clay Wilson! (S. Clay Wilson Trust website)-- This week was underground comix legend S. Clay Wilson's 75th birthday. It's been almost 8 years since Wilson somehow sustained a number of serious injuries that he's never really recovered from.
Last week, Lorraine Wilson offered an update on how Wilson and she have been doing lately.
King Neptune and his Mermaid, Druid
He stopped “getting better” many years ago. His dementia has increased noticeably, and he spends much of the afternoon & evening watching movies streaming on the Telly. This keeps him entertained, since he can no longer draw. We take him out for a walk, or for a ride in the car as well, although that is becoming difficult now that my own health is also a challenge. I’m working on it….but things progress very slowly when you’re old and poor in America. Not only is it hard to get ahold of my doctors, Or get an appointment….but it’s almost impossible to get them to talk to EACH OTHER so a plan can be coordinated. I need hip & spine surgery now, as I’m in crippling pain and can barely walk. I need to stay strong so I can keep Wilson out of an institution.If you have a few dollars to spare, the Wilson's have a Paypal trust where you can make donations to help them out.
** Despite challenges, young Cubans being drawn into world of anime, manga (Japan Times)-- Here's a wonderful story out of Havana about the international reach of anime and manga. And even with the heavy internet restrictions in Cuba, it's wonderful to see how the reach of fandom finds new and difficult locales to get into.