Author: Glenn Hauman

Glenn is VP of Production at ComicMix. He has written Star Trek and X-Men stories and worked for DC Comics, Simon & Schuster, Random House, arrogant/MGMS and Apple Comics. He's also what happens when a Young Turk of publishing gets old.
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Finally, a movie that Alan Moore (probably) won’t disavow…

…because he not only wrote it himself, he’s in it. Watch the trailer for The Show:

  • Official selection 53 Sitges Festival Internacional de Cinema Fantàstic de Catalunya
  • Official selection 2020 SXSW Film Festival

From the mind of Alan Moore comes a new feature film directed by Mitch Jenkins starring Tom Burke, Siobhan Hewlett, Alan Moore, Ellie Bamber, Darrell D’Silva, Richard Dillane, Christopher Fairbank, and Sheila Atim.

A frighteningly focussed man of many talents, passports and identities arrives at England’s broken heart, a haunted midlands town that has collapsed to a black hole of dreams, only to find that this new territory is as at least as strange and dangerous as he is. Attempting to locate a certain person and a certain artefact for his insistent client, he finds himself sinking in a quicksand twilight world of dead Lotharios, comatose sleeping beauties, Voodoo gangsters, masked adventurers, unlikely 1930s private eyes and violent chiaroscuro women…and this is Northampton when it’s still awake. Once the town closes its eyes there is another world entirely going on beneath the twitching lids, a world of glittering and sinister delirium much worse than any social or economic devastation. Welcome to the British nightmare, with its gorgeous flesh, its tinsel and its luminous light-entertainment monsters; its hallucinatory austerity.

In other words, for those who thought JERUSALEM made too much sense.

Joe Sinnott: 1926-2020

Joe Sinnott: 1926-2020

Joe Sinnott, award winning artist best known for his long stint inking Marvel Comics’ Fantastic Four from 1965 to 1981, has died at the age of 93.

During his 60 years as a Marvel freelancer and then salaried artist working from home, Sinnott inked virtually every major Marvel title, with notable runs on The Avengers, The Defenders and Thor. Stan Lee cited Sinnott as the company’s most in-demand inker: “To most pencilers, having Joe Sinnott ink their artwork was tantamount to grabbing the brass ring.” Sinnott’s art appeared on two US Postal Service commemorative stamps in 2007, and he continued to ink The Amazing Spider-Man Sunday comic strip until his retirement in 2019.

Listing the awards he won over his illustrious illustrating career would take pages, so we’ll limit ourselves to the award named after him: In his honor, the Inkwell’s Hall of Fame Award was dubbed the “Inkwell Award Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award” or the “Joe Sinnott Award.”

Joe and his late wife Betty had four children, Joe Jr., Linda (deceased), Kathy, and Mark; four grandchildren, Chris, Malissa, Dorian, and Trevor; and seven great-grandchildren, Vinnie, Joey, Tyler, Jack, Elizabeth, Mariah, and Madison.

We highly recommend visiting his website for more information. Our condolences to his family, friends, and fans worldwide.

Dennis O’Neil: 1939-2020

Dennis O’Neil: 1939-2020

Dennis Joseph “Denny” O’Neil, the writer and editor who redefined the Batman, the Joker, Green Arrow, the Shadow, and the Question for the modern era; created or co-created R’as al Ghul, OPtimus Prime, Azrael, Leslie Tompkins, Madame Web, Richard Dragon, and Lady Shiva; and was a beloved contributor to ComicMix, has passed away at the age of 81.

He started his career in comics almost by accident, when Roy Thomas suggested that O’Neil take the Marvel writer’s test, which involved adding dialogue to a wordless four-page excerpt of a Fantastic Four comic. O’Neil’s entry resulted in Lee offering O’Neil a job. O’Neil had never considered writing for comics, and later said he’d done the test “kind of as a joke. I had a couple of hours on a Tuesday afternoon, so instead of doing crossword puzzles, I did the writer’s test.” He started with Millie The Model and Patsy Walker, but soon found himself writing Doctor Strange and Daredevil. He also started freelancing for Charlton Comics under the name Sergius O’Shaughnessy, and when editor Dick Giordano went over to DC Comics he brought Denny along, where he wrote the Creeper, Wonder Woman, Justice League of America, Green Lantern and Green Arrow, Batman, Superman, and the revivals of the Shadow, the Avenger, and Captain Marvel, now retitled to Shazam!

In the 80’s, he returned to Marvel for a spell, where he wrote Iron Man and put Jim Rhodes into the suit of armor, contributed to the creation of the Transformers, and edited Frank Miller on his two runs of Daredevil as well as writing the issues in between them, among many other things.

He returned to DC in 1986 to become the group editor of the Batman titles, as well as write The Question.

He didn’t limit his writing to comics, also writing at various times for Coronet, Show, Gentleman’s Quarterly, Ono, the Village Voice, News Front, Amazing Stories, High Times, Viva, Penthouse, Publisher’s Weekly, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Fantastic, Generation One, Fantasy and Science Fiction, Mike Shayne’s Mystery Magazine, Alfred Hitchcock, and Haunt of Horror; as well as television, both live-action (Superboy, Logan’s Run) and animated (Batman: The Animated Series); and various novels, including the exemplary Helltown.

He was widely honored by fans and pros alike, including Shazam Awards for Best Continuing Feature for Green Lantern/Green Arrow, Best Individual Story for “No Evil Shall Escape My Sight” in Green Lantern #76 (with Neal Adams), for Best Writer (Dramatic Division) in 1970 for Green Lantern, Batman, Superman, and other titles, and Best Individual Story for “Snowbirds Don’t Fly” in Green Lantern #85 (with Neal Adams) in 1971. He also won the Comics Buyer’s Guide Award for Favorite Editor in 1986, 1988, 1989, and 1996; a Goethe Award in 1971 for “Favorite Pro Writer” and was a nominee for the same award in 1973, received an Inkpot Award in 1981, and won a Haxtur Award in 1998.

He gave of his time to help teach the next generation of comics creators, teaching at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, writing The DC Comics Guide to Writing Comics, and writing for ComicMix. He also sat on the board of directors of the charity The Hero Initiative, an organization devoted to helping comic creators in need, and served on its Disbursement Committee.

He was married to the lovely former Marifran McFarland, who passed away in 2017. He is survived by his son, Lawrence, and the industry which he forever changed.

Taking our cue from him, our Recommended Reading List for today is Denny’s columns. We’ll miss him.

Today: Dr. Seuss, Round Deuce!

We know at this time no one feels very funny,
But Dr. Seuss still wants to take all our money.
So if you’re stuck at home thanks to COVID-19
with nothing to do in your long quarantine,
we’d like you to know as a last resort
you can see DSE appeal their loss in court
as the previous ruling they’ll try to impugn!
It’ll happen on Monday at the stroke of high noon
(that’s Eastern time; West coast, it’s three hours prior).
It streams live on YouTube, so watch as their… lawyer
attempts to rebut the last judge’s decision
by claiming her judgement had much imprecision.
We’ll stick to the facts and we’ll cite precedent
as the Ninth Circuit hears our (remote!) argument.

The links are below and there’s bandwidth to spare,
so watch justice in action— we hope you’ll be there!

https://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/calendar/view.php?caseno=19-55348

Cancelled Comic Convention Cavalcade? Count On It!

Cancelled Comic Convention Cavalcade? Count On It!

This may be the big one, folks. This may be the year that the San Diego Comic-Con gets cancelled.

You think I’m kidding?

The word came out from C2E2 this past weekend: People slated for Emerald City Comic Con Artist Alley in two weeks are publicly cancelling. A rumor that the whole dang con is cancelling is also doing the rounds.

Why? Because the first casualty from COVID-19 is from the Seattle area. There’s a cluster of people there who are already infected.

And neither the coronavirus nor the cancellations going to stop there.

The week after ECCC? ACE in Boston and Planet Comicon in Kansas City. Two weeks after that? Great Philadelphia, Big Apple and MoCCA.

And that just gets us to April.

Guests will cancel. The comics industry is filled with people who simply don’t have health insurance, and can’t risk the costs, the time out of work, or (obviously) their lives for the worst con-crud ever. Old-timers won’t even dare to leave their homes, nor should they. And all of this is before there are mandatory shutdowns by hotels, convention centers– even government order.

There’s no way to avoid it: if you’re expecting to go to any more conventions this year, you’d best be preparing alternate plans. If you’re expecting to make money at a show, you’d best be exploring mail order options or other sources of income.

I expect we’re going to start hearing about official cancellations of major conventions in ten days, possibly less.

How long will it go on? Hard to say, but if they’re talking the cancellation of events like the 2020 Tokyo Olympics this summer, you can’t believe that San Diego Comic-Con International isn’t going to be on the list to avoid like the– well, to avoid. At the very least, it’s not going to be nearly as international as in years past.

But that’s just the beginning of the troubles for the comics industry.

Are you going to be able to get to your local comic store on a regular basis? Is that store in a mall that’s in danger of quarantine? How many of those stores are getting books from overseas? (Assume anything from China will be an extra month late at minimum.) What happens if there are road closures? Travel restrictions between states?

And you’re going to have strange happenings. It just might be that Birds Of Prey is going to be the only comic book movie that is released to theaters directly this year– a number of people may check what’s at their local theater in two weeks and see the signs saying NO TIME TO DIE, and take the hint.

This is going to be a crazy year, folks. Be prepared. Keep checking CDC.gov. And for heaven’s sake, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. You even know the length of time… it’s the time to sing this to yourself:

And no, we’re not sorry that song will be stuck in your head for the next year.

DC’s REAL Doomsday Clock: Dan DiDio, 5G, and the End of the Trinity

DC’s REAL Doomsday Clock: Dan DiDio, 5G, and the End Of The Trinity

By now, you’ve probably heard that Dan DiDio is out as the co-publisher of DC Comics. Heidi covers a lot of it:

The departure of Dan DiDio as DC Co-Publisher on Friday was both long expected and shocking. His exit was rumored many many times over the years, and every contract renewal was a will he or won’t he suspense movie.

Originally at ComicsBeat.com

Rob Salkowitz over at ICV2 notes that this could be the first clear sign of some major changes in direction since DC’s parent company, Time Warner (now WarnerMedia), was acquired by AT&T last summer.

DiDio was something of a polarizing figure because of the direction of DC’s publishing strategy over the past few years. That has led to a lot of speculation about what was behind the sudden move, and whether it’s related to specific issues like DC’s impending “5G” initiative or some pent-up dissatisfaction within the company over his leadership.

Originally at ICV2

But what is/was 5G? Rather than that new wireless spectrum that’s being talked about for phones and wifi, DiDio had something else in mind:

The basic idea has been floating around since the middle of last year, and is seemingly yet another response to flagging sales. The idea was sort of to Ultimatize DC: all of the main heroes would be replaced by new younger versions, a tried and true comic book procedure which ends up giving you a great wave of cheers when the originals return AND new refreshing characters with youthful appeal.

Originally at ComicsBeat.com

Rob goes into detail about some of the financial issues behind this, focusing on AT&T’s purchase of WarnerMedia for $85 billion, doubling their debt to $170-odd billion, making them the most indebted publicly-traded company in the world by a factor of at least two, and about $70 billion in BBB-rated debt is coming due in the next 4-5 years, which must be repaid on schedule to maintain investment-grade status for its bonds.

But Rob missed the giant concrete block suspended over the wizard’s head…and the thread breaks in 13 years.

Because in 2033, unless there’s a big change in legislation… Superman enters the public domain.

Followed by Batman, Sandman, and the original Captain Marvel in 2034; Robin, the Flash, Green Lantern, Dr. Fate, Hourman, the Spectre, and Johnny Thunder in 2035; and Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, and Aquaman in 2036.

What percentage of the overall value of DC Comics is made up of those characters? 50%? 75%? 90%??? Whatever it is, it’s a lot. And it’s going to start going away very soon.

Now, DC won’t lose all of that value immediately. But there’s not going to be a lot preventing anyone from reprinting those stories, or making new stories from them. Or new movies and TV shows. Heck, there won’t be anything preventing Marvel from publishing Superman stories.

My take on 5G is that Dan was trying to get out from under by creating new characters that could still be held under copyright, holding on to value for the company going forward. And now that Dan’s gone… what are they going to do?

Tick-tock… tick-tock…

See The Future in “2020 Visions” – Available Now!

See The Future in “2020 Visions” – Available Now!

See The Future in “2020 Visions” – Available Now!

In 1997, Jamie Delano (Hellblazer), Frank Quitely (All-Star Superman, X-Men, Doom Patrol), Steve Pugh (Harley Quinn, GrimJack), James Romberger (Seven Miles A Second), and Warren Pleece (Incognegro) created a fantastic tour-de-force, following the lives of a far-flung family, struggling to survive in the morally and socially decadent United States in the far-flung future of… 2020.

Time’s up. Here we are.

How clearly did we see tomorrow– er, today?

You can find out by reading the new, remastered 2020 Visions collection, with a new introduction by Jamie Delano, in comic shops and book stores today, direct through our pages and Amazon, and available on Comixology on January 8th (you can pre-order it now).

Better get ready…because the future’s here.