Dear Vertical

December 8, 2006

Thank you for this announcement to brighten an otherwise grouchy day.

You could make my whole month if you announced some Moto Hagio.

C’mon… you know you want to.

Art and commerce

December 8, 2006

At his (probably not work-safe) blog, Simon Jones pointed to this thread at The Comics Journal message board. As usual, Jones insists on making sense:

“Art comics, by their nature, holds art/self above all else, while the priority for most manga published here is the audience… it’s a very commercial product. Manga is going to be no more, and no less, relevant to the alt comix crowd as superhero comics.”

The TCJ thread is covers familiar, stereotypical territory from those who adopt the “All manga is cookie-cutter girly crap” position. (Would they quail if they knew their critical assessment of manga is identical to some spandex aficionados on other, undoubtedly lesser message boards?) On the bright side, Shaenon Gaerrity is around to provide a slightly different perspective.

Cleansing breath

December 8, 2006

I have to admit that I’m a little wearier than usual of comics publishers’ tendency to overstate their accomplishments and innovations to a degree that any actual novelty or merit gets crushed under the self-serving hype.

So I’m quite delighted with ICv2’s recent interviews with Mark Siegel, editorial of First Second. In spite of a year of genuinely noteworthy commercial and artistic achievements, Siegel comes off as level-headed and creative, appreciative of the successes First Second has enjoyed so far, and focused on what’s still to be done.