Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Wash: 04/13/10

o "Just Close Your Eyes and Throw a Dart."

That's some pretty Jack Kirby art The New York Times shows off in this piece by Dave Itzkoff, which says that animation studio Ruby-Spears Productions, which employed Kirby in the 1980s, just discovered 600 production boards the creator produced while working there, and now plans to capitalize on those properties in "movies, television shows, comics, videos games and more—all of which they intend to pursue," according to Itzkoff.

As much as I like Kirby's art, I'm probably just too cynical to muster much excitement. Why not just take all those drawings and publish them in a big, shiny book or two, with the proper historical context? What's the appeal of past-prime Kirby creations executed by people not Kirby? Didn't Marvel try that a few years back, with predictably poor results? Also, even though the Kirbys' lawyer seems to agree that this was work for hire and fully belongs to the studio, the whole thing seems like a rather odd footnote to the current copyright tussle between Kirby's heirs and Marvel.

Then again, I have to admit my inner 12-year-old wants someone to ship all that stuff off to Grant Morrison and see what he comes up with, but that's an unlikely scenario, I should think.

o "The Story He Pitched Began to Evolve Into Something Quite Different"

All the best to Paul Cornell, whose work I've enjoyed in the past, but editor Matt Idelson's comments about yet another last-minute, post-solicitation change of creative personnel at DC make this the most awful press release in recent memory.

o "A Raspberry Jam Diorama of the Soviet Union, a Diorama Inset with Ventilation Piping, an Extended Trilobyte and a Nest of Ugly Sausage"

Ladies and gentlemen: the one and only Tom Crippen is at it again, reviewing Brian Michael Bendis and Olivier Coipel's Siege #2.

o "Even Without Marvel"

Heidi MacDonald talks to a Diamond representative Kuo-yu Liang about Marvel's decision to move its bookstore distribution from Diamond to Hachette in December. Liang puts a good face on the development, but his comment is still understandably uncheerful.

In other news, MacDonald points out that in March 2010, Image Comics is not a top-five publisher in the direct market. That group, as always led by Marvel and (with some distance) DC, is rounded out by IDW, Dark Horse and Dynamite this month, in that order.

o "On Its Way"

Sean T. Collins reports that a sequel to Marvel's indie anthology Strange Tales is on its way. Personally, I'm hoping for a follow-up to Unstable Molecules by James Sturm, called "Marvel Day."

I'm not holding my breath for that, though.

o "You Should Learn to Enjoy the Finer Things in Life"

Viewable for free at Marvel this week: Soldier X, by Darko Macan and Igor Kordey, one of the best, most innovative superhero works around. It's never been collected, because Marvel probably figures it's a little too odd for the American market, so this is your chance.

The first two issues are up, so far. Here's my take on the series.

(Found via Sean T. Collins@Robot 6)

o "Until the Night You Died. The First Time."

I review The Question #37, a Blackest Night tie-in by Greg Rucka, Dennis O'Neil and Denys Cowan.

Also: The Mystic Hands of Dr. Strange #1, by Kieron Gillen, Frazer Irving and others.

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