If you only click on one of these links today, make it this one: Writing for the LA Times‘ Hero Complex blog, Liesl Bradner discusses the “superheroes” of kamishibai, a sort of Japanese street theater that used large painted illustrations to help the storytellers. Some of these heroes are remarkably similar in certain aspects to the American superheroes who followed them almost a decade later. While it’s easy to look at American short stories, pulp magazines and early films to find traces of Batman, Superman and other heroes and find possible sources of inspiration, it’s harder to imagine Joe Schuster or Bob Kane hearing about Golden Bat or Pale Rider and folding elements into their later, more famous creations.
“My name is Andrew Smith, and I am a comic-book junkie.Of course I’ve always suspected it. But with ‘Turok, Son of Stone Archives’ Vol. 4, I can no longer deny it”: Here’s a nice wire service story by Andrew Smith regarding Dark Horse’s most recent collection of Turok comics. Smith makes a clever observation about mediocre comics and the pleasures they can contain, and I was intrigued to see the review start off with comparisons to the Turok videogame. I guess I wasn’t aware that it was so popular that it is the starting point for conversations about Turok now (I’m not doubting Smith; I honestly had no idea. I don’t think I’ve played a video game since the Super NES became obsolete, on account of old mannishness).
“Gene Simmons’ son has a new comic”: Yeah he does, but the first issue came out back in, like, August. What’s with the three-month delay, Toronto Sun?
“Along with Bloom County, The Far Side and a few other clever strips, Calvin and Hobbes kept the funny pages going”: Jenny Williams pens—well, types—a long, thorough review of Looking for Calvin and Hobbes: The Unconventional Story of Bill Watterson and His Revolutionary Comic Strip for Wired. Any of you guys read it yet? What’s the verdict?
I don’t know who designed the “Kryptonian at Heart” T shirt, but I know enough to hate them passionately: I thought Mike Sterling’s most recent “End of Civilization” post, in which the blogger/retailer/Sluggo fan notes the many horrors lurking in the Diamond Previews catalog, was even funnier than usual. I’m not sure if that means Sterling was even funnier than usual this time, or if the merchandies was more horrifying than usual this time. I hope the former, for Sterling’s sake—can a man endure much more horror than what was already in there?