The GeeksverseNEWS Round-up | Week of April 19, 2013

NEWS Round-up | Week of April 19, 2013
Published on Friday, April 19, 2013 by
[UPDATED] In this week’s News Round-up: Robert Morales (Truth: Red, White & Black) passes away, 2013 Eisner Award nominees revealed, find out how you can donate all-ages comics to the Boston Children’s Hospital, and more!

Breaking News: Boston Comic-Con Postponed Indefinitely

Due to law enforcement concerns in the Boston area, the Boston Comic-Con scheduled for this weekend has been postponed indefinitely. From the official Boston Comic-Con website:

Due to the unfortunate events that have transpired here in Boston, a lock down has been put into effect until further notice causing the Hynes Convention Center to suspend all events. As such, The Boston Comic Con will be rescheduled to a date in the not too distant future. All people who purchased advanced tickets on line will have their tickets honored at the rescheduled show. If for some reason, you can not come to the show on that date, we will refund your ticket.

Please, we ask for your patience, understanding, and cooperation. We appreciate your loyalty, and continued support for the Boston Comic Con. Unfortunately, this situation is beyond our control.

For further updates, please check

Robert Morales, writer of Truth: Red, White & Black, passes away

Writer Robert Morales—best known to comics readers for his work on the Truth: Red, White & Black miniseries originally published by Marvel Comics in 2003—passed away this week at the age of 54, according to The Comics Beat’s Heidi McDonald, citing a Facebook message from Science Fiction & Fantasy Hall of Fame-enshrined writer Samuel R. Delany, who wrote on Thursday:

Robert Morales was one of my closest friends–and had been since he was seventeen years old. He died at his home in Brooklyn this morning, leaving his father and mother. He was fifty-four. We spoke on the phone for many years, at least once a week and often more. I am shattered. His many friends will miss him deeply. He had agreed to be my literary executor, and the idea that he would pre-descease me never entered my head. For me and many others he was an indispensable friend. To say he will be deeply missed is an incredible understatement.

Truth_Red_White_BlackMorales’ Truth: Red, White & Black, created in collaboration with artist Kyle Baker, is a landmark work in terms of its impact on the portrayal of issues of race in superhero comics. Inspired by the real-world events of the infamous Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment, Morales crafted a behind-the-scenes prequel story about the origins of the Super-Soldier serum, where prototypes of the formula that would eventually be used to transform scrawny fine arts student Steve Rogers into the shield-wielding champion Captain America were first tested on black soldiers who suffered all manner of horrific mutations and painful deaths, leaving only one survivor, Isaiah Bradley, who would go on to become an underground superhero legend in the Marvel Universe’s black community. A bold work that broached complicated issues of American race relations and medical research ethics, Truth: Red, White & Black was met with enthusiasm and more than a little controversy, even before it was published. Talking to On the Media‘s Brooke Gladstone in 2002, miniseries editor Axel Alonso stated that

It’s worth noting that prior to publication the project was very controversial. A lot of people came out of the woodwork assuming that this project would do something to besmirch the integrity of an icon that everyone had come to love, and I can assure people that it does anything but that. Some people have felt that this is going to be some politically-correct tract when in fact nothing could be further from the case. Some people have assumed that this is looking to divide people — draw a line between whites and blacks when in fact I think it does anything but that as well. The end of this story our — well we refer to him as our Black Captain America — and our Captain America are linked as brothers –they’re hardly at odds with one another.

Stan Lee, speaking with Entertainment Weekly in 2002, described Morales and Baker’s work as “very clever and provocative” and “dramatically gripping.”

Morales’ superhero comics legacy lives on in an industry that continues to grow more accurately diverse and mindful of the history and context of race issues in its portrayals of persons of color. The Comixverse extends to Morales’ family, friends, and fans our sincerest condolences over his passing.

How to donate all-ages comics to the Boston Children’s Hospital

Adri Cowan of the Happy Blogtime! blog is collecting all-ages comics to be distributed to patients at the Boston Children’s Hospital in the wake of Monday’s horrific Boston Marathon bombing. Cowan writes

… I want to help. In the very least, I’d like to distract the traumatized, the children, the people whose lives are going to be changed forever, regardless of limbs lost or physical impairments.

Those interested in donating all-ages comics (no swearing, no nudity, no excessive gore and violence) for the drive should e-mail Cowan to let her know what comics will be added to the project. All comic book contribution packages should be addressed to:

Caitlin Cunningham
Attn: Cowan Donations
1277 Commonwealth Ave, Apt. 411
Allston, MA 02134

Visit Happy Blogtime! for more information and details.

2013 Eisner Award nominees announced

Eisner-Awards-LogoComic-Con International revealed earlier this week the full list of nominees for the 2013 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards. Below are the categories and nominees:

Best Short Story

  • “A Birdsong Shatters the Still,” by Jeff Wilson and Ted May, in Injury #4 (Ted May/Alternative)
  • “Elmview” by Jon McNaught, in Dockwood (Nobrow)
  • “Moon 1969: The True Story of the 1969 Moon Launch,” by Michael Kupperman, in Tales Designed to Thrizzle #8 (Fantagraphics)
  • “Moving Forward,” by drewscape, in Monsters, Miracles, & Mayonnaise (Epigram Books)
  • “Rainbow Moment,” by Lilli Carré, in Heads or Tails (Fantagraphics)

Best Single Issue (or One-Shot)

  • Lose #4: “The Fashion Issue,” by Michael DeForge (Koyama Press)
  • The Mire, by Becky Cloonan (self-published)
  • Pope Hats #3, by Ethan Rilly (AdHouse Books)
  • Post York #1, by James Romberger and Crosby (Uncivilized Books)
  • Tales Designed to Thrizzle #8, by Michael Kupperman (Fantagraphics)

Best Continuing Series

  • Fatale, by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (Image)
  • Hawkeye, by Matt Fraction and David Aja (Marvel)
  • The Manhattan Projects, by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra (Image)
  • Prophet, by Brandon Graham and Simon Roy (Image)
  • Saga, by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples (Image)

Best New Series

  • Adventure Time, by Ryan North, Shelli Paroline, and Braden Lamb (kaboom!)
  • Bandette, by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover (Monkeybrain)
  • Fatale, by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (Image)
  • Hawkeye, by Matt Fraction and David Aja (Marvel)
  • Saga, by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples (Image)

Best Publication for Early Readers (up to age 7)

  • Babymouse for President, by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm (Random House)
  • Benny and Penny in Lights Out, by Geoffrey Hayes (Toon Books/Candlewick)
  • Kitty & Dino, by Sara Richard (Yen Press/Hachette)
  • Maya Makes a Mess, by Rutu Modan (Toon Books/Candlewick)
  • Zig and Wikki in The Cow, by Nadja Spiegelman and Trade Loeffler (Toon Books/Candlewick)

Best Publication for Kids (ages 8-12)

  • Adventure Time, by Ryan North, Shelli Paroline, and Braden Lamb (kaboom!)
  • Amulet Book 5: Prince of the Elves, by Kazu Kibuishi (Scholastic)
  • Cow Boy: A Boy and His Horse, by Nate Cosby and Chris Eliopoulos (Archaia)
  • Crogan’s Loyalty, by Chris Schweizer (Oni)
  • Hilda and the Midnight Giant, by Luke Pearson (Nobrow)
  • Road to Oz, by L. Frank Baum, adapted by Eric Shanower and Skottie Young (Marvel)

Best Publication for Teens (ages 13-17)

  • Adventure Time: Marceline and the Scream Queens, by Meredith Gran (kaboom!)
  • Annie Sullivan and the Trials of Helen Keller, by Joseph Lambert (Center for Cartoon Studies/Disney Hyperion)
  • Ichiro, by Ryan Inzana (Houghton Mifflin)
  • Spera, vol. 1, by Josh Tierney et al. (Archaia)
  • A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle, adapted by Hope Larson (FSG)

Best Humor Publication

  • Adventure Time, by Ryan North, Shelli Paroline, and Braden Lamb (kaboom!)
  • BBXX: Baby Blues Decades 1 & 2, by Jerry Scott and Rick Kirkman (Andrews McMeel)
  • Darth Vader and Son, by Jeffrey Brown (Chronicle)
  • Naked Cartoonists, edited by Gary Groth (Fantagraphics)

Best Digital Comic

  • Ant Comic, by Michael DeForge
  • Bandette, by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover
  • It Will All Hurt, by Farel Dalrymple
  • Our Bloodstained Roof, by Ryan Andrews
  • Oyster War, by Ben Towle

Best Anthology

  • Dark Horse Presents, edited by Mike Richardson (Dark Horse)
  • No Straight Lines: Four Decades of Queer Comics, edited by Justin Hall (Fantagraphics)
  • Nobrow #7: Brave New World, edited by Alex Spiro and Sam Arthur (Nobrow)
  • 2000 AD, edited by Matt Smith (Rebellion)
  • Where Is Dead Zero?, edited by Jeff Ranjo (Where Is Dead Zero?)

Best Reality-Based Work

  • Annie Sullivan and the Trials of Helen Keller, by Joseph Lambert (Center for Cartoon Studies/Disney Hyperion)
  • The Carter Family: Don’t Forget This Song, by Frank M. Young and David Lasky (Abrams ComicArts)
  • A Chinese Life, by Li Kunwu and P. Ôtié (Self Made Hero)
  • The Infinite Wait and Other Stories, by Julia Wertz (Koyama Press)
  • Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo & Me, by Ellen Forney (Gotham Books)
  • You’ll Never Know, Book 3: A Soldier’s Heart, by C. Tyler (Fantagraphics)

Best Graphic Album—New

  • Building Stories, by Chris Ware (Pantheon)
  • Goliath, by Tom Gauld (Drawn & Quarterly)
  • The Hive, by Charles Burns (Pantheon)
  • Unterzakhn, by Leela Corman (Schocken)
  • You’ll Never Know, Book 3: A Soldier’s Heart, by C. Tyler (Fantagraphics)

Best Adaptation from Another Medium

  • Chico and Rita, by Fernando Trueba and Javier Mariscal (Self Made Hero)
  • Homer’s Odyssey, adapted by Seymour Chwast (Bloomsbury)
  • Richard Stark’s Parker: The Score, adapted by Darwyn Cooke (IDW)
  • Road to Oz, by L. Frank Baum, adapted by Eric Shanower and Skottie Young (Marvel)
  • A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle, adapted by Hope Larson (FSG)

Best Graphic Album—Reprint

  • Cruisin’ with the Hound, by Spain (Fantagraphics)
  • Ed the Happy Clown, by Chester Brown (Drawn & Quarterly)
  • Everything Together: Collected Stories, by Sammy Harkham (PictureBox)
  • Heads or Tails, by Lilli Carré (Fantagraphics)
  • King City, by Brandon Graham (TokyoPop/Image)
  • Sailor Twain, or The Mermaid in the Hudson by Mark Siegel (First Second)

Best Archival Collection/Project—Strips

  • Alex Raymond’s Flash Gordon and Jungle Jim, vol. 2, edited by Dean Mullaney (IDW/Library of American Comics)
  • Mister Twee Deedle: Raggedy Ann’s Sprightly Cousin, by Johnny Gruelle, edited by Rick Marschall (Fantagraphics)
  • Percy Crosby’s Skippy, vol. 1, edited by Jared Gardner and Dean Mullaney (IDW/Library of American Comics)
  • Pogo, vol. 2: Bona Fide Balderdash, by Walt Kelly, edited by Carolyn Kelly and Kim Thompson (Fantagraphics)
  • Roy Crane’s Captain Easy: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips, vol. 3, edited by Rick Norwood (Fantagraphics)

Best Archival Collection/Project—Comic Books

  • Crime Does Not Pay Archives, edited by Philip Simon and Kitchen, Lind & Associates (Dark Horse)
  • David Mazzucchelli’s Daredevil Born Again: Artist’s Edition, edited by Scott Dunbier (IDW)
  • Wally Wood’s EC Stories: Artist’s Edition, edited by Scott Dunbier (IDW)
  • Walt Disney’s Uncle Scrooge: Only a Poor Old Man, by Carl Barks, edited by Gary Groth (Fantagraphics)
  • Young Romance: The Best of Simon & Kirby’s Romance Comics, edited by Michel Gagné (Fantagraphics)

Best U.S. Edition of International Material

  • Abelard, by Régis Hautiere and Renaud Dillies (NBM)
  • Athos in America, by Jason (Fantagraphics)
  • Blacksad: A Silent Hell, by Juan Diaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido (Dark Horse)
  • The Making of, by Brecht Evens (Drawn & Quarterly)
  • Monsieur Jean: The Singles Theory, by Philippe Dupuy and Charles Berberian (Humanoids)
  • New York Mon Amour, by Benjamin LeGrand, Dominique Grange, and Jacques Tardi (Fantagraphics)

Best U.S. Edition of International Material—Asia

  • Barbara, by Osamu Tezuka (Digital Manga)
  • A Chinese Life, by Li Kunwu and P. Ôtié (Self Made Hero)
  • Naoki Urasawa’s 20th Century Boys, by Naoki Urasawa (VIZ Media)
  • Nonnonba, by Shigeru Mizuki (Drawn & Quarterly)
  • Thermae Romae, by Mari Yamazaki (Yen Press/Hachette)

Best Writer

  • Ed Brubaker, Fatale (Image)
  • Matt Fraction, Hawkeye (Marvel); Casanova: Avaritia (Marvel Icon)
  • Brandon Graham, Multiple Warheads, Prophet (Image)
  • Jonathan Hickman, The Manhattan Projects (Image)
  • Brian K. Vaughan, Saga (Image)
  • Frank M. Young, The Carter Family (Abrams ComicArts)

Best Writer-Artist

  • Charles Burns, The Hive (Pantheon)
  • Gilbert Hernandez, Love and Rockets New Stories, vol. 5 (Fantagraphics)
  • Jaime Hernandez, Love and Rockets New Stories, vol. 5 (Fantagraphics)
  • Luke Pearson, Hilda and the Midnight Giant, Everything We Miss (Nobrow)
  • C. Tyler, You’ll Never Know, Book 3: A Soldier’s Heart (Fantagraphics)
  • Chris Ware, Building Stories (Pantheon)

Best Penciller/Inker

  • David Aja, Hawkeye (Marvel)
  • Becky Cloonan, Conan the Barbarian (Dark Horse); The Mire (self-published)
  • Colleen Coover, Bandette (Monkeybrain)
  • Sean Phillips, Fatale (Image)
  • Joseph Remnant, Harvey Pekar’s Cleveland (Zip Comics/Top Shelf)
  • Chris Samnee, Daredevil (Marvel); Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom (IDW)

Best Painter/Multimedia Artist (interior art)

  • Brecht Evens, The Making Of (Drawn & Quarterly)
  • Juanjo Guarnido, Blacksad: A Silent Hell (Dark Horse)
  • Teddy Kristiansen, The Red Diary/The RE[a]D Diary (MAN OF ACTION/Image)
  • Lorenzo Mattotti, The Crackle of the Frost (Fantagraphics)
  • Katsuya Terada, The Monkey King vol. 2 (Dark Horse)

Best Cover Artist

  • David Aja, Hawkeye (Marvel)
  • Brandon Graham, King City, Multiple Warheads, Elephantmen #43 (Image)
  • Sean Phillips, Fatale (Image)
  • Yuko Shimizu, The Unwritten (Vertigo/DC)
  • J, H. Williams III, Batwoman (DC)

Best Coloring

  • Charles Burns, The Hive (Pantheon)
  • Colleen Coover, Bandette (Monkeybrain)
  • Brandon Graham, Multiple Warheads (Image)
  • Dave Stewart, Batwoman (DC); Fatale (Image); BPRD, Conan the Barbarian, Hellboy in Hell, Lobster Johnson, The Massive (Dark Horse)
  • Chris Ware, Building Stories (Pantheon)

Best Lettering

  • Paul Grist, Mudman (Image)
  • Troy Little, Angora Napkin 2: Harvest of Revenge (IDW)
  • Joseph Remnant, Harvey Pekar’s Cleveland (Zip Comics/Top Shelf)
  • C. Tyler, You’ll Never Know, Book 3: A Soldier’s Heart (Fantagraphics)
  • Chris Ware, Building Stories (Pantheon)

Best Comics-Related Periodical/Journalism

  • Alter Ego, edited by Roy Thomas (TwoMorrows)
  • ComicsAlliance, edited by Joe Hughes, Caleb Goellner, and Andy Khouri
  • The Comics Reporter, edited by Tom Spurgeon
  • Robot Six, produced by Comic Book Resources
  •, edited by Timothy Hodler and Dan Nadel (Fantagraphics)

Best Comics-Related Book

  • The Art of Daniel Clowes: Modern Cartoonist, edited by Alvin Buenaventura (Abrams ComicArts)
  • Marie Severin: The Mirthful Mistress of Comics, by Dewey Cassell (TwoMorrows)
  • Marvel Comics: The Untold Story, by Sean Howe (HarperCollins)
  • Mastering Comics, by Jessica Abel and Matt Madden (First Second)
  • Team Cul De Sac: Cartoonists Draw the Line at Parkinson’s, edited by Chris Sparks (Andrews McMeel)
  • Woodwork: Wallace Wood 1927–1981, edited by Frédéric Manzano (CasalSolleric/IDW)

Best Educational/Academic Work

  • Autobiographical Comics: Life Writing in Pictures, by Elisabeth El Refaie (University Press of Mississippi)
  • Comics Versus Art, by Bart Beaty (University of Toronto Press)
  • Crockett Johnson & Ruth Krauss: How an Unlikely Couple Found Love, Dodged the FBI, and Transformed Children’s Literature, by Philip Nel (University Press of Mississippi)
  • Lynda Barry: Girlhood Through the Looking Glass, by Susan E. Kirtley (University Press of Mississippi)
  • The Poetics of Slumberland: Animated Spirits and the Animating Spirit, by Scott Bukatman (University of California Press)

Best Publication Design

  • Building Stories, designed by Chris Ware (Pantheon)
  • Dal Tokyo, designed by Gary Panter and Family Sohn (Fantagraphics)
  • David Mazzucchelli’s Daredevil Born Again: Artist’s Edition, designed by Randy Dahlk (IDW)
  • Mister Twee Deedle: Raggedy Ann’s Sprightly Cousin, designed by Tony Ong (Fantagraphics)
  • Wizzywig, designed by Ed Piskor and Chris Ross (Top Shelf)

Some thoughts and observations:

  • facepalm_supergirlDC Comics has been practically shut out of all the major categories this year, getting nods only with two Best Cover nominations and a mention in Dave Stewart’s qualifying work for his Best Coloring nomination, which has to be seen as nothing less than a total lack of critical and peer validation for the recent output of the industry’s second biggest publisher. We know DC has been taking a beating commercially (volume market share has sunk below pre-“New 52″ levels in recent months) and in terms of reputation with fans and professionals alike in public discussion spaces—primarily because of a perceived, systemic creator-editor conflict and poor PR management—but still, we expected at least Dial H for Hero (an underrated gem buried in the New 52 line) getting some recognition.
  • Speaking of Dave Stewart: the man is an absolute coloring machine. Check out the number of books listed with his nomination entry.
  • Notable omissions in the Best Coloring category: Jordie Bellaire (Womanthology: Space, The Manhattan Projects, John Carter: The Gods of Mars) and Owen Gieni (Debris, Glory).
  • It will be a minor upset if Juanjo Guarnido doesn’t win the Best Painter/Multimedia Artist (interior art) category. His competition has put out spectacular work, but Guarnido’s art for Blacksad: A Silent Hell is absolutely next-level, you’re-playing-checkers-I’m-playing-chess type of stuff.
  • IDW Publishing’s partnership with the Library of American Comics looks like it’s displaced Dark Horse Books as the biggest competition for Fantagraphics in the Best Archival Collection categories.
  • Kaboom!’s Adventure Time has nominations in three categories: Best New Series, Best Humor Publication, Best Publication for Kids (8–12). The Adventure Time spin-off Adventure Time: Marceline and the Scream Queens is also nominated for Best Publication for Teens (13–17). The Eisner Awards panel loves it some Adventure Time.
  • We’re a little disappointed that neither Ed Brisson nor Rus Wooton were nominated for their lettering work.
  • Image Comics pretty much owns the Best Continuing Series field with Prophet, Saga, Fatale, and The Manhattan Projects all up for the plum (Marvel’s Hawkeye is the only non-Image nominee in the category). Four of the six nominees for Best Writer are also in contention because of their work on Image Comics titles.

Read Cyberforce #1–4 for free!

Also on the topic of Image Comics, the publisher recently made the relaunched Cyberforce #1–4 available for free reading over at Newsarama, just to remind us that not everything they put out is Eisner Award-worthy. We kid, we kid! The Kickstarter-funded project is actually quite entertaining, an unapologetically self-serious dose of cyborg superhero action rendered in the distinct Top Cow Productions aesthetic tradition.


Cleveland celebrates Superman’s 75th Anniversary

April 18 marked 75 years since the debut of Action Comics #1, which as any comic fan worth his mylar bags knows, featured the first appearance of Superman. In Cleveland, where Superman co-creator Joe Shuster lived and found inspiration for his early comics work (the artist was actually born in Toronto, Ontario, but his family relocated to Ohio when he was ten years old), mayor Frank Jackson declared Thursday as “Superman Day,” and slices of birthday cake were given to visitors to the Cleveland airport’s Superman display.

Shuster and Superman co-creator Jerry Siegel, and more recently, their heirs, have been embroiled in a decades-long dispute with Warner Bros. (corporate parent of publisher DC Comics) over the commercial rights to Superman. Earlier this year, the 9th US Circuit of Appeals ruled in favor of Warner Bros., granting the company full commercial control over the Superman property in a suit originally filed by the Jerry Siegel estate. However, Marc Toberoff, who serves as counsel for the Siegel and Shuster estates, has stated that the Shuster family plans to contest a separate 2012 decision awarding Warner Bros. the rights to the Superman property.

R.I.P.D. movie trailer released

Check out the new trailer for the film adaptation of R.I.P.D., which we recently reviewed right here (“Men in Black-meets-Hellboy, with a little Ghost thrown in”) at the Comixverse:

In case you missed them…

Trade paperback and hardcover previews posted on the site over the past week:

Also, check out our interview with comedian/singer-songwriter Mikey Mason, who is promoting his new EP Storm Rising, featuring original music inspired by Neil Gaiman’s novel American Gods, as well as our retrospective on the recently-concluded debut story arc of Wolverine MAX.

That’s your NEWS Round-up for this week. Until next time, read between the HYPE!
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