Buffy Season 8 - Issue 2 CoverToday the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defimation, or GLAAD, announced the nominees for their 20th Annual Media Awards. Included again this year is a category for comic books:

The Alcoholic by Jonathan Ames (Vertigo/DC Comics)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer by Drew Goddard, Jeph Loeb and Joss Whedon (Dark Horse Comics)
Final Crisis: Revelations by Greg Rucka (DC Comics)
Secret Six by Gail Simone (DC Comics)
Young Avengers Presents by Ed Brubaker, Brian Reed, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Paul Cornell, Kevin Grevioux and Matt Fraction (Marvel Comics)

The awards are handed out to media and media-makers who provide compelling, honest, and visible portrayals of GLBT people.

I’ve often felt that the intended aims of the media awards were awkward, giving a pat on the back to straight people who are good to gays rather than recognizing the achievements of… you know… actual gay people who also inspire and create great work and are visible and honest and etc.  But since I haven’t read 4 of the 5 books on my list up there I’ll hold my tongue until I get through them… if I ever get through them.

(Maybe Scott Pilgrim will finally get nominated next year when the movie comes out, eh?)

- Chris

Comics Festival 2009 Solicitation CoverYikes! I woke up this morning and was informed that the January 2009 Previews Catalogue is due… Which means that retailers have gotta place their orders for this year’s FREE COMIC BOOK DAY books soon! That includes the third installment of COMICS FESTIVAL!, the anthology we put together to promote Canadian comics talent, and TCAF. This year Comics Festival is being aimed directly at the under-12 set, a kid-focused, kid-approved collection of great comics!

Comics Festival 2009 leads a 10-page SARDINE IN OUTER SPACE story by TCAF Guest Of Honour Emmanuel Guibert, in association with SARDINE publisher First Second Books. Emmanuel Guibert also put together that striking new cover that will leap off the table on Free Comic Book Day!

Comics Festival 2009 will also feature Kean Soo, who will be providing a couple of all-new JELLABY short stories in celebration of the second volume of that series, coming this fall!

Wrapping up the book will be a bunch of comic strips and shorts by a plethora of Great Canadian Cartoonists, and there will be more than one surprise in its pages. It really is going to be a fantastic book, full of great stories, and a great retailer tool that will promote more than 15 in-print graphic novels for young readers.

If you’re a comics fan looking for a great read this FCBD, or you have kids who like comics, or you’re a retailer who wants a great kid-safe book to hand out for Free Comic Book Day this year (that doubles as a great sales-tool!) then don’t miss COMICS FESTIVAL 2009!

- Chris
P.S.: Free Comic Book Day is Saturday May 2nd this year, the weekend before TCAF.

I’m going to write a full post on this, but I wanted to get this out there early:

Diamond’s new order minimums increase is going to hurt the DM worse than Marvel’s Heroes World Debacle did. It is essentially the beginning of the end for the Direct Market, in my estimation. Specifically because Diamond Comics Distributors is a monopoly.

So, yeah. All the reasoning is coming later (like: Scott Pilgrim Volume 1 would not have made the new retail cut off, based on its original initial orders). This Is Not Good.

Fun Fact: Do you know what it costs to be a direct market retailer? $600 minimum order each month. A cost between 4 and 10 times less than what it costs to be a publisher, apparently. Figure that one out.

- Christopher


George Sprott
By Seth
Hardcover, 10 x 14 inches, 96 pages with gatefold, full color.
$ 24.95
ISBN: 978-1897299-51-7

The first major new graphic novel by Seth in 3 years.

Celebrated cartoonist and New Yorker cover artist Seth gives us the fictional life of George Sprott. On the surface George seems a charming, foolish, old man—but who is he? And who was he? Told as a patchwork tale, we come to know George, piece by piece, in a series of “interviews,” flashbacks, and personal reminiscences. George Sprott is a story about time, identity, loss, and the persistence of memory. Though, ultimately, this is the story of a man’s death, Seth leavens it with humor and restraint. Originally serialized in The New York Times Magazine, this greatly expanded and “re-mastered” version is George Sprott’s first publication as a complete work.

Note: An excellent companion to the Seth-edited and designed Collected Doug Wright.



The Collected Doug Wright: Canada’s Master Cartoonist
By Doug Wright. Designed and Edited by Seth.
Hardcover, 9.5 x 14 inches, 240 pages, full color
$ 39.95
ISBN: 978-1-897299-52-4

A career-spanning retrospective of one of the masters of North American cartooning, featuring an introduction by Lynn Johnston

The first of a historic two-volume set, The Collected Doug Wright: Canada’s Master Cartoonist presents the first-ever comprehensive look at the life and career of one of the most-read and best-loved cartoonists of the 1960s. Compiled in cooperation with Doug Wright’s family, it draws from thousands of pieces of art, pictures, letters, and the artist’s own journals to provide a fully rounded view of Wright, both as a cartoonist and as an individual. Wright was a major figure in mid-20th century cartooning and his work was a major influence on the likes of Chester Brown, Dave Sim, Lynn Johnston, and Seth. From the 1950s to 1980, Wright’s weekly strip was read by over 2 million Canadians and was syndicated across the country. Designed by the acclaimed cartoonist and Peanuts designer Seth and featuring a biographical essay by journalist Brad Mackay, this lavish hardcover collection gives Wright’s career the recognition it has long been due. The introduction is by one of the most famous working cartoonists today, Lynn Johnston, of the syndicated heavyweight comic strip For Better or For Worse.

Note: An excellent companion to Seth’s new graphic novel, George Sprott.


Offered Again This Month:

Berlin Volume 1: City of Stones (New 5th Printing), by Jason Lutes
Berlin Volume 2: City of Smoke (New 2nd Printing), by Jason Lutes
Wimbledon Green, by Seth
It’s A Good Life If You Don’t Weaken, by Seth 

Product Information After The Cut.

Keep reading…

chrismal_trlMal and I at the Toronto Reference Library yesterday. Photo courtesy of the indomitable Eric Kim.

TCAF announcement next week, it looks like. :)

- Christopher

Mysterius The Unfathomable #1 Creator Signing
Featuring Series Artist and Co-Creator Tom Fowler
Wednesday, January 21st, from 5pm to 7pm
@ The Beguiling, 601 Markham Street, Toronto

The Beguiling is proud to welcome Ottawa cartoonist Tom Fowler, to sign copies of his new creator-owned series Mysterius The Unfathomable. Tom will be dropping by The Beguiling on the day of the book’s release, Wednesday January 21st, to sign and sketch for fans.

Written by Jeff Parker (X-Men: First Class, The Interman) and published by Wildstorm, Mysterius The Unfathomable is a neat-sounding series about a series’ of calamities that befall the new magical assistant to Mysterius, a washed-up stage magician who is secretly a sorcerer supreme… of a sort. Here, just check out this interview with the author.

It should be a fun series, and who doesn’t want their copy defaced by the artist, IN PERSON?

See you on the 21st!

- Chris @ The Beguiling

If I had a small banner ad (468×60) between every post on the site that was 1000 words or more (at the end of the post), how upset would you be?

1 is not upset, 10 is stop-reading-the-site.

Answer honestly, I can take it.


Hey, thanks for the support folks. It looks like, judging by people who bothered to respond, about 5% of you are going to end up annoyed with me. I guess we’ll find out soon.

And yeah, I have no plan to start using Google Adsense. The lack of control is really gross, I generally approve every advertisement that runs on the site, something I can’t do with Google. I know a number of my friends ended up with pro-Prop 8 ads through AdSense, for example, and I’d rather take my site offline then have something like that happen.

New post soon.

- Chris


My latest post for Tor.com has gone live, about the very good news that one of the best pieces of TV of all time, The Prisoner, is now available for free streaming from AMCtv.com.

As a very unfortunate coincidence, Prisoner star Patrick McGoohan has passed away at the age of 80, just as I was writing my post, apparently. The Prisoner had a lasting effect on me, informing much of my teenaged (and later) rebellion. I think it’s a fine piece of work, and recommend it.

- Christopher
Image from Jack Kirby’s aborted adaptation of The Prisoner, from 1976.