October 6, 2017

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Business As Usual (Weekend Pattering for 10/5/2017)

Panel

Will Elder (Mad #5, 1952)

Previously on Panel Patter

Cover of the Next Week

Jeffrey Brown's variant cover to Royal City #6 is an homage to Sonic Youth's Goo, which was originally created by Raymond Pettibon.  I know Brown has made a nice career for himself doing kid's books (my son and I enjoyed his Jedi Academy series) but I would like to see Brown do something in alt-comics again.  Maybe not the autobio books that he was doing but this cover makes me want to see what he could do with a slice-o-life comic.

Interviews

from "Perfect Hair" by Tommi Parrish

*** What Does It Mean to Support Diversity in Comics? (Medium)-- Shea Fitzpatrick interviews new 2D Cloud co-publisher Kim Jooha.
KJ: That’s the thing, I wanted to help, but I also don’t want to just publish “good enough” stuff. I’m really snobbish, I’m really elitist [laughs], I hate good enough or bad books because I think it’s a waste of paper. I hate seeing wastes of paper, I want to recycle them [laughs]. Why would you publish mediocre books? It’s a waste of time, money, and energy. I want to publish the greatest in the comics scene, but at the same time, if someone has talent that I think could make really great work, when should I start asking about more practical stuff, like contracts? When should we start collecting for the book, or should we just publish a zine for now? At the same time, I think there are those philosophical thoughts about how to support. That’s why I wrote [about this issue] in an Instagram post and not on the blog. It’s everywhere, and it’s very complex, and I don’t have an answer.

*** Sex Criminals Creators Fraction & Zdarsky Invite Readers to ‘Fourgy’ (CBR)-- I appreciated the honesty from Fraction and Zdarsky about 10-month publishing hiatus they took between the last two arcs of the series.
Fraction: Difficult because the direct market is predicated on seven-day sales cycles. And we want to find a sweet spot between servicing our direct market partners, and keeping them healthy and fed and satisfied, and at the same time creating a product that can compete with titles that have been around for 80 years, because, I would think, of quality. But whatever it is about the book, it’s not going to get better if we do it faster. [Laughs] Unlike the Ramones, “do it faster” was not our solution.

This and That

*** Estate of Comic Pioneer Sues Over Milestone Media Revival (Variety)-- Just as a reminder as DC is announcing that the return of Milestone, that line's co-creator Dwayne McDuffie's widow is actually suing Reginald Hudlin and Milestone Media for McDuffie's share of the Milestone property.
Charlotte McDuffie alleges that her inquiries about the new company have been met with “stalling and stonewalling tactics.” According to the suit, the new company is seeking to expand Milestone’s relationship with DC Comics, and is talking to other publishers about new projects, “all the while utilizing the intellectual property rightfully owned by Milestone, without compensation to Milestone or McDuffie’s estate, and without the consent of the Plaintiff or McDuffie’s heirs.”
DC announced the 2018 return of the Milestone properties at NYCC, helmed by Hudlin and McDuffie's Milestone co-creator Denys Cowan.


*** Solanin Manga Gets Epilogue Chapter 11 Years Later (Anime News Network)-- I love projects like this (T2 Trainspotting may be my favorite film of the year so far) so if Viz ends up reprinting this, I may have to check out Asano's Solanin again.  I wrote about Solanin years ago and wonder if it holds up.
Shogakukan revealed on Friday that its new edition release of Inio Asano's Solanin manga will contain a new epilogue chapter labeled "chapter 29," 11 years after the manga concluded in 2006. The new chapter will be set in 2017, and will show the lives of Meiko, Kato, Billy, and Ai.
*** Whatever Happened to the Superhero Writers of Tomorrow? (Paste Magazine)-- Jakob Free poses an interesting question?  Back around 2007/2008, it seemed like there were a lot of creative voices ready to take Marvel and DC in new directions.  It's 2017 and the only one still around may be Brian Michael Bendis and I think he may have worn out his welcome with a lot of fans.  Now, I don't know if I really agree that there is a lack of ambition being seen right now.  I think it's there but the fanbase is far more diluted now and doesn't rally around it like a hivemind as we may once have done.
To attempt to answer why the current comics ecosystem hasn’t witnessed the ambition of decades previous, we should look at some of the factors that contribute to a writer’s ascendancy from obscurity to marquee billing on a cape comic. What do the most successful scribes have in common with one another? Is it simply sheer talent? Is it the business acumen and social media sway that comic writers are expected to have when marketing themselves and their work? Is it just cold, hard sales data? All of these components do indeed play a role. But after that new wave of writers arrived (Bendis, Millar and company), these factors alone were not enough to situate the next crop of scribes.

Your Moment of resignation

*** Former Dark Horse Editor-in-Chief Scott Allie Exits Publisher (CBR)-- CBR reports that late last Friday night, Scott Allie stepped down as Dark Horse's Executive Senior Editor to become a freelance editor & writer.  This comes almost 2 years after reports of Allie's harassment of Dark Horse employees and comics creators came to light in a piece at Graphic Policy by Janelle Asselin.
Allie, who was the Editor-in-Chief of Dark Horse Comics until September 11th, assaulted two people at a party during the convention. We’ll get to the SDCC incident in a moment, but before that, we should discuss the fact that Allie’s behavior there is not a one-time thing. Certainly there are people who make mistakes while drunk and do not deserve to be penalized for a momentary—and singular—lapse in judgment. Allie, however, has allegedly made such a habit of this behavior that there have been jokes about it internally at Dark Horse for years, although no whisper of it traveled much further than that. He was particularly known for two things: out of control behavior while drunk and biting.
At the time, Mike Richardson's response to these reports was mild, to say the least, without ever really mentioning Allie or his position in the company.  
I also want to make one thing very clear: Dark Horse as a company, and myself as an individual, take the kinds of inexcusable incidents reported by Ms. Asselin very seriously—doubly so when it involves one of our employees. In cases such as these, we have been proactive in our response, with a variety of professional services involved, all with the goal of changing behavior. Additionally, a number of internal responses are acted upon, including termination if such behavior continues. Under no circumstance is any individual “harbored.” In this particular case, action was taken immediately, though we did not, and cannot, perform a public flogging, as some might wish.
Allie continued to work at Dark Horse for two years after the allegations came to light and even more years after Allie's harassment allegedly began. Since then, Allie has continued to write BPRD and Abe Sapien comics for Mike Mignola and Dark Horse, including the current BPRD series.

And just for the record, Eddie Berganza continues to be employed by DC Comics.

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