Tagged: Captain America

Now I’m an Avenger Too… Part 7

Now I’m an Avenger Too… Part 7

“Yeah, trust me babe. The Avengers need me. I’m a star! Simon? Theodore? Come on. They’re just like Tigra and Ant-Man… worthless filler getting in the way of the main attraction.”

“That’s right, toots. It’ll be me, Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America. We’ll be ‘The Fantastic Four’!”

“Now, what number do we start with? I called Brother Voodoo, and told him I love you. Singing…Ooh-ee-ooh-ah-ah, fing-fang-walla-walla-bing-bang-foom.”

Now I’m an Avenger Too…

Now I’m an Avenger Too…

“So there I was, about to embark on an amazing journey through time, when my bat-phone rang.”

“Bruce? It’s Steve. Rogers. Captain America? Oh come on! Kurt and George made us fight a ton back in JLA/Avengers! Say, listen… I heard you got your Bucky to fill in for a while? Good. Let me tell you about this opportunity we have over here at the House of Ideas…”

“Long story short? Sorry Grant… I don’t want to see how many creepy perverts you’ve got stored throughout time. I got a posh gig at a new mansion in New York. Bats-out!”

Marvel Comics Sues Jack Kirby!

Yeah, I know. Jack’s long-gone. That doesn’t mean he can’t be sued – or, at least, his estate. To be fair, Jack started it.

A whole bunch of copyrights expire between 2014 and 2019,
and Kirby’s estate sent notices saying those copyrights will revert to from the House That Jack Built to Jack’s actual house.

These copyrights pretty much include everything Jack ever
touched at Marvel: Amazing Adventures, Amazing Fantasy, Amazing Spider-Man, Avengers, Fantastic Four, The Incredible
Hulk, Journey into Mystery, Rawhide Kid, Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos,
Strange Tales, Tales to Astonish, Tales of Suspense
and The X-Men.

This action follows similar claims made by Jerry Siegel
(Superman), Marty Nodell (Green Lantern) and Joe Simon (Captain America). All have met with some degree of success for the litigants.

Marvel, of course, claims all this stuff was created as work-for-hire and therefore belongs to Marvel. Or, actually, now, Disney. “It is a standard claim predictably made by comic book companies to deprive artists, writers, and other talent of all rights in their work,” according to Kirby’s attorney Marc Toberoff. “The Kirby children intend to vigorously defend against Marvel’s claims in the hope of finally vindicating their father’s work… Sadly, Jack died without proper compensation, credit or recognition for his lasting creative contributions.”

In the world of litigation, Newtonian physics reigns supreme. Marvel lawyer John Turitzin said in a statement that the heirs were
trying “to rewrite the history of Kirby’s relationship with Marvel,” adding “Everything about Kirby’s relationship with Marvel shows that his contributions were works made for hire and that all the copyright interests in them belong to Marvel.” He then sought a court ruling that the Kirby notices have no effect.

Marvel is now owned by Disney, and Disney’s got more
hard-ass lawyers than Harvard graduated in 200 years. If the Kirby estate were to win, the $4,000,000,000.00 Disney just spent for Marvel goes up in smoke. Expect a big bloody fight – or an amusing settlement.

Quotes
courtesy of the Associated Press.

George Tuska, 1916 – 2009

George Tuska, 1916 – 2009

Pioneer comic book and newspaper strip artist George Tuska
died yesterday at the age of 93.

It’s hard to imagine an artist with a greater pedigree.
Beginning in 1939, George worked on such features as The Avengers, Black
Terror, Buck Rogers, Captain America, Captain Marvel (both Fawcett and Marvel), Challengers of the Unknown,
Doc Savage, Green Lantern, The Hulk, Iron Man, Justice League of America
(a.k.a. “The World’s Greatest Superheroes” newspaper stip), Luke Cage, Planet
of the Apes, Scorchy Smith, Sub-Mariner, Superboy, Superman, T.H.U.N.D.E.R.
Agents, Teen Titans, Uncle Sam… and that merely scratches the surface.

George was a gentle man who once had taken the
extraordinary step of punching out well-known wiseass cartoonist Bob Powell
while working in the Eisner-Iger shop. Will Eisner said Powell, as brilliant an
artist as anybody in that hallowed shop, absolutely deserved it. The stuff of
legend.

On a personal note, George was drawing the Buck Rogers
newspaper strip during its final years, from 1959 to 1967. During that last
year, I was an unpaid intern at the National Newspaper Syndicate and was
allowed to contribute story concepts and ideas. As a 16 year-old, I was amazed
and thrilled to be working anywhere near
George Tuska.

2009 Harvey Awards: ‘All-Star Superman’ repeats win; ‘Umbrella Academy’, ‘Kirby’, Al Jaffee win 2 each

2009 Harvey Awards: ‘All-Star Superman’ repeats win; ‘Umbrella Academy’, ‘Kirby’, Al Jaffee win 2 each

With this many twos, you’d think the Harvey was Harvey Dent.

The 2009 Harvey Awards were given out tonight at the Baltimore Comic-Con in a ceremony MC’d by double nominee Scott Kurtz. Named in honor of the late Harvey Kurtzman, the Harvey Awards recognize outstanding work in comics and sequential art.

All-Star Superman repeated the win for best continuing or limited series, with Grant Morrison picking up the Best Writer award. Last year’s best writer winner, Brian K. Vaughn, picked up the award for Best Single Issue for Y: The Last Man #60. In the two-time winners, The Umbrella Academy won for best artist Gabriel Ba and best colorist Dave Stewart, the Mark Evanier biography Kirby: King Of Comics won for best historical/journalistic and excellence in presentation, and Al Jaffee won for best cartoonist and a special award for humor in comics.

Special awards were given by the Hero Initiative: the Humanitarian Award was given to Neal Adams for his years fighting for creators, and Baltimore Comic-Con organizer Marc Nathan received a surprise award just because he puts on a great show.

Nominations for the Harvey Awards are selected exclusively by creators – those who write, draw, ink, letter, color, design, edit or are otherwise involved in a creative capacity in the comics field. They are the only industry awards both nominated and selected by the full body of comic book professionals. This was the fourth year for the Harvey Awards in Baltimore, MD.

The full ballot is listed below, with winners listed in bold. Congratulations to all the winners and nominees.

(more…)

Disney Eats Marvel: The Analysis

Courtesy @ChrisSamnee ... behold MODUCK!!! on TwitpicSo the mouse is eating the spider. What does it all mean?

Poke around the Internets and you’ll see a lot of hysteria. Comics fans aren’t happy; they’re worried Disney will Disnify the whole thing. Movie fans are worried the Marvel flicks will have all the weight and depth of your average Disney movie. Theme park fans are concerned about Universal losing their franchise just so Ant-Man and the Wasp can fit into “It’s A Small World After All.”

Calm down. Assuming the deal gets approved by Marvel’s stockholders – which is likely – and the government – which is likely but not as certain – contracts are contracts and Disney would rather spend the next five years buying other things than paying for litigation. Paramount will still release those next five Marvel Films films, Universal will continue to maintain their current lifespan (however long that might be) with the Marvel rides and that fat lady who’s knocking the poo out of Captain America’s winged head in those commercials, and the comic books will continue to be published.

Well, most likely.

Marvel’s been trying to pattern itself after the Disney business model for at least the past four or five owners, so it’s no surprise that the House of Mouse took preemptive measures. Disney can’t mess with their theme parks right now – I mentioned the contractual obligations and, quite frankly, business ain’t what it used to be. The Disney characters and the Marvel characters are not a good theme park fit: the latter are not grandmother-friendly.

I doubt Disney will interfere with publishing very much, at least not in the short run. They have a very bad track record in the publishing fields, and the racks are littered with their cancelled product. They’re in the licensing business; that’s what they do and what they know. If the overall comic book publishing field continues to deteriorate they might do what they did with their other product and simply license it all out. It would be wonderfully ironic if Mark Waid’s Boom Studios gets the franchise, and I’ll bet you Mark feels the same way.

If there are any changes, they are likely to take the form of a reorientation of the Marvel characters towards the teen-age male market. Disney is weak in that demographic and can use some bolstering up. And bringing Marvel Comics back to the teen-ager friendly arena isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It worked for Lee and Kirby and Ditko and Thomas and Buscema; today there are more than enough really good writers and artists to address that market in a contemporary manner.

So I don’t think we’ll see Doctor Doom threatening The Little Mermaid. Don’t hold your breath for that Sinister Seven Dwarves movie. The Hulk probably will not stomp Goofy. Stan Lee will not be frozen and placed on the shelf next to Walt Disney and Jim Henson. All that’s a pity. Disney has no sense of humor. Just ask the Air Pirates.

The fact is, big business has never, ever been able to understand the American comic book industry. We defy the Harvard MBA mentality, and I’m proud of that. If DIsney does what Disney does best and the publishing business doesn’t implode, nobody will notice a thing. The Avengers 3 will make more money than publishing could lose.

Unless Dean Jones is cast as Nick Fury.

A 33 year veteran of the comic book industry, Mike Gold is ComicMix’s editor-in-chief. Portions of this blather appeared in today’s The Point podcast.

Matt Wagner Batman art for Ostrander auction

Matt Wagner Batman art for Ostrander auction

More artwork is still coming in! Here’s Matt Wagner (Grendel, Mage, Madame Xanadu, among so many others) doing Batman.

At the 2009 Chicago Comicon, Comix4Sight has joined forced with Wizard Entertainment to hold a charity auction the evening of Saturday, August 8th.  The goal is to raise sufficient funds to help cover the costs of John Ostrander’s
treatments in his battle against glaucoma, and it is John’s expressed wish that should we raise funds
above his needs, that excess money is to be donated to The Hero Initiative to help them continue their great works aiding comic creators in their times of need.

And let us not forget this Batman/Hawkman piece by Andy and Joe Kubert, Gonzo Davros by Roger Langridge, writer/artist of The Muppet Show comics from BOOM! StudiosCaptain America by Neal Adams, and Thom Zahler’s Cheeks the Black Lantern.

We’ll have more stuff up soon enough, promise.

Spoiler for ‘Blackest Night’: Cheeks, the Toy Wonder is a Black Lantern!

Spoiler for ‘Blackest Night’: Cheeks, the Toy Wonder is a Black Lantern!

Yes, he’s back from the recycling bin! It’s Cheeks, the Toy Wonder as a newly forged Black Lantern! Now we know why Ambush Bug #6 has been delayed, it had to tie in with Blackest Night

…okay, maybe not.

Still, the art from Thom Zahler, the big galoot behind Love And Capes, is still important, because it’s helping John Ostrander regain his sight.

At the 2009 Chicago Comicon, Comix4Sight has joined forced with Wizard Entertainment to hold a charity auction the evening of Saturday, August 8th.  The goal is to raise sufficient funds to help cover the costs of John Ostrander’s
treatments in his battle against glaucoma, and it is John’s expressed wish that should we raise funds
above his needs, that excess money is to be donated to The Hero Initiative to help them continue their great works aiding comic creators in their times of need.

Artwork is still coming in for the auction, and we’ll be showing you stuff prior to the auction. Don’t forget this Batman/Hawkman piece by Andy and Joe Kubert, Gonzo Davros by Roger Langridge, writer/artist of The Muppet Show comics from BOOM! Studios, and Captain America by Neal Adams. Now we add Zahler’s piece to the auction.

Neal Adams Captain America art for Ostrander benefit auction at Chicago Comic-Con

Neal Adams Captain America art for Ostrander benefit auction at Chicago Comic-Con

At the 2009 Chicago Comicon, Comix4Sight has joined forced with Wizard Entertainment to hold a charity auction the evening of Saturday, August 8th.  The goal is to raise sufficient funds to help cover the costs of John Ostrander’s
treatments in his battle against glaucoma, and it is John’s expressed wish that should we raise funds
above his needs, that excess money is to be donated to The Hero Initiative to help them continue their great works aiding comic creators in their times of need.

Artwork is still coming in for the auction, and we’ll be showing you stuff prior to the auction. We already showed you this Batman/Hawkman piece by Andy and Joe Kubert, and Gonzo Davros by Roger Langridge, writer/artist of The Muppet Show comics from BOOM! Studios. Now, we show you Captain America by the amazing Neal Adams.

So if you don’t bid on this piece to help John out, we can only conclude that you hate America.