o Question: Why are there no awards for the best writing on comics? Not as part of the Eisners or something, I mean, but as their own entity? Or do they exist and I'm just blanking on them?
I guess Tom Spurgeon's been doing something like that in his outstanding Holiday Interviews series, bless him—today's must read: Douglas Wolk on Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca's Invincible Iron Man. Which is a good start and serves to highlight the critics, certainly, but still isn't the same as a proper award.
If we want more, better comics criticism, reporting, analysis, opinions, journalism and thinking in general—and we do—then, surely, a good way of fostering it would be to award those who already do it. So, at the end of the year, I think I'll attempt some sort of Top 10 list of the best writing I read.
I'm not sure what kind of shape this could or should take on, ultimately, so, for the time being, it's mainly something I'm throwing out there for discussion. Any comments are welcome.
o Speaking of critics and such, Timothy Callahan speaks truth in his latest column at Comic Book Resources:
[T]here's no doubt in my mind that the 2000s were a wonderful decade for comics. Probably the best ever.
He goes on to explain why, and even though his reasoning focuses on the North American market, which I'm not sure serves his point well, I wholeheartedly agree with a lot of what Callahan says.
Over at The Savage Critics!, David Uzumeri looks back at 2009 and largely ends up on the same page.
At this stage, there's a lot of diversity out there, by a lot of people who know what they're doing and want to make good art and entertainment rather than just "good comics," and who have high production values backing them up. If you don't find any new comics to tickle your fancy, it's probably you.
o At House to Astonish, Paul O'Brien reviews the last year's worth of X-Factor and makes some great observations about the story:
By pairing Layla with Madrox, Peter David seems to be writing about free will versus determinism. Layla’s world is entirely deterministic – it’s on rails, and so it’s meant to be. [...] Madrox, on the other hand, is a one-man embodiment of alternate realities, since his duplicates allow him to explore both options whenever he’s faced with a choice.
o Happy Birthday, Robot 6!
o Over at Comicgate, the magazine's contributors, including yours truly, present our favorite comics of 2009.
If you want to know what gushing praise for Final Crisis, Phonogram and Chew looks like in German, it's not to be missed.
o Over at the Standard Attrition message board, I lay out my view on authorial intent, in response to a point made by Ivan Brandon regarding my review of The Winter Men. (Yes, that's meant to read "intends" in the first line of my response. Grmblfks.)
o Now up: part 1 of my Best Comics of 2009 list.