Saturday, March 07, 2009

Comic Book Indigene

This week, I had the honor of attending the exhibit opening gala of Comic Book Indigene at the Smithsonian's American Indian Museum. I was invited because I was one of the people advocating that the Smithsonian bring the exhibit to town from the New Mexico Museum of Indian Arts & Culture.

Museum director Justin Estoque, Gov. Sanchez of Acoma, and me

Exhibit Curator Tony Chavarria

Also in attendance were the 'usual suspects' from the museum's National Council, the Office of Indian Affairs, and Sen. Tom Udall, a big supporter on Native American issues.

Justin and I rocked the party till closing, and my comic book knowledge came rather in handy for the shoptalk; let's just say, if there's ever a Smithsonian exhibit on the history of Black Condor, you'll have me to thank.

The exhibit touches on a lot of topics, including Native American artists in the industry, stereotypical portrayal of American Indians in mainstream comics, use of the art form in indigenous culture, and influences of the medium's artistic conventions on native art. It's interesting and covers a wide variety of topics. In fact, that would be my main criticism; it touches on them. Maybe I'm a little more into Native American stuff and comic books than most people, but to me any one of these topics is subject enough for an entire exhibit. Heck, to me, "Little Sure Shot as a Metaphor of Native Relations" is enough for an exhibit.

Still, if you're in DC, take the time to go see the exhibit and the museum.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Things That Made Me Happy

in my comics this week.

  • Cavalier, in two comics in one month? God, I love the New Silver Age!
  • Don't let them fool you; all cat-breath is like that.
  • Just imagine the Veil on a date with the Phantom Stranger. Blah blah blah blah blah!
  • Is that Deadshot's secret motivation? I'm thinking we'll never know.
  • The return of Vicki Vale, society reporter sexpot.
  • Forget about his powers; God, Superman's got guts! "Your entire societal structure sucks!" It's like in the late '30s, where Superman wasn't The Man, he fought The Man...
  • "Eye a fark!" Words to live by.
  • Sigh. Why doesn't anyone give me a time-released bottle of champagne?
  • Tallulah decides not to wait a second, after all.
  • "Well. That was unpleasant."
  • Nocturna--? Go figure.
  • Even chained and bleeding to death, Cavalier remains a gentleman.
  • The Flash Rebirth house ad. I just like looking at it.
  • Is that the Monocle, atop the bridge? Didn't he used to be dead?
  • What the Artist Guild wears.
  • "Come as a stranger, leave as a friend." Or, you know, a corpse.
  • The cause of death of Anthony Giancarli... I want a flashback!!!
  • The Gotham Gazette gives a good sense of the slow unraveling of Gotham in Batman's absence, rather than just stating it as a fact; I like that.
  • Broken and scarred, Jonah Hex is still hella sexy.
  • "Moon Supergirl has thwarted our criminal endeavors!"
  • Any comic that cold-opens with Phantom Stranger speaking in sententiousness and logo-front is AOK by me!
  • Aunt Alura, Super-MILF.
  • Strange Adventures does a great job of tying together lots of DC's stray space characters into an interesting read. Besides I got to see more of Rann destroyed, and that's always welcome. Dirty stinkin' Rannies.
  • Now that HE's out of the way, can we please put Cavalier back with Killer Moth, where he belongs? Thanks.
  • The eloquence of Lena Luthor.
  • Is that a super-Corgie? Excellent.
  • Tyrone's species bigotry; amen to that, brother!
  • Dr. Zimmerman, the Wild West's most avant-garde interior decorator.
  • Prince Gavyn's bold deceit.
  • I cannot imagine what Bizarro and the Weird are up to together...!?
  • Ah... I begin to perceive the Secret Origin of J.E.B. Stuart's ghost...
  • I believe in Zod. Almost.
  • "There's somethin' bout it that brings a smile ta muh face."
  • Disgusting hippies and their disgusting hippy van.
  • I will not be satisified until I have the opportunity to leave someone a note that says, "Linger at your own peril." Preferably, a little girl.
  • Um... oops. I guess... I guess Killer Moth's available now, too.
  • Dan Didio's new line of clothing.
  • Hey, once it become clear that Barbara's going to be Batgirl against her breasts got HUGE!
  • Kal-El's new guild.
  • "Offer ends soon." Supplies are limited!
  • And the lesson is... do not make Jonah Hex mad at you.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Heroclix saved?

From the folks at Save Heroclix

Sorry for the radio silence for the last week or so; we've been hearing some tremendous news and we've been waiting for the time where we could spill some major beans. While we can't say things in plain English yet, we do have some announcements.

#1 HeroClix will be sold, and it will be sold shortly. Both Topps and a newly formed game company have agreed in principle, and are hashing out their final deal.

#2 The game will be sold to a new ownership group that Pinata Games' members have met with and talked with over the past few months. They're nice people and we think they have some solid ideas...some BIG ideas. We've worked together with them on a few little projects tied into their purchase of the brands.

#3 In addition to HeroClix, the new group is buying some other brands from Topps, and other WizKids' fans may be delighted to hear what the new group wants to do with them.

#4 While Pinata Games will not be owners of the properties, we are working on a long-term deal with the new owners to collaborate with them on the relaunch and operation of HeroClix. We officially will announce our partnership with the new group after the purchase of the brands.

#5 Justin Ziran (CEO of Pinata) has been out-of-state talking with the new ownership group for the past few days, and he has nothing but good news to report. We anticipate a formal announcement some time over the next couple of weeks, which may have some other interesting news in it as well.

To reiterate, this is great news, and we'd like to thank all of the HC fans for remaining so resolute during this process.

-Jake Theis

Delightful. I would like to state publicly that I would be thrilled to help the new owners of Heroclix in an area where it's always been lacking: the maps. As you can tell, I just loving making Heroclix maps and would love to see some of my designs be part of the new owner's offerings... .

Monday, March 02, 2009

Pep 9: Water Passing through the Tunnel

Hey, kids, look! It's the Shield, squatting with legs akimbo while a powerful stream of distinctly not-blue liquid pours down on some poor sap, threatening to drown him in a growing river. I wonder what THAT's all about... .

I guess it's just the Pep Comics' unique brand of action detective adventure.

Usually, Pep covers focus their powerful perspective backwards toward the horizon. But this one is about the "down" of it all. Clearly, we're being given a perspective similar to the Shield's, as he watches the hapless victims doused by the powerful liquid jet he can no longer contain. Ahem.

What I find most interesting about this cover is the depiction of the bystanders, who, instead of just bystanding, are actually helping one another get out of the collapsing tunnel. A realistic scene, yes, but not the kind usually see on a cover: the hero, essential in the rescue but stalemated by the situation, while the civilian have to save themselves. It's a nice touch and demonstrated the can-do, bootstrapping attitude that pulled Americans out of the Depression and through WWII.