Tagged: party

Martha Thomases: Real Reality vs Comics Reality

Recently, I had a long wait for a mammogram at the doctor’s office and I used the time to consider why living in the real world is better than living in the world of comics. And I love comics.

10. In the real world, buildings don’t get knocked over in fights. If they do, it’s such a big deal that we invade Iraq.

9. Crowd scenes in comics show people who are better looking, in general, than we are in the real world. Very few are overweight or wear baggy clothes. They are not ethnically diverse. A disproportionate number have Mohawks. In the real world, we stumble along in our own individual funks, and I don’t stand out with my gray hair and cellulite.

8. Parties in comics are even worse. Women wear outfits that would require more Hollywood tape than can be found in all of Bigelow. No woman ever wears a nice pantsuit unless it has a plunging neckline. No woman could eat a sandwich in those outfits. In the real world, it’s not a party without a sandwich.

7. In the real world when there is an important election we sometimes find out that a candidate has accepted money from people from other countries. In comics, we sometimes find out that a candidate has accepted money from aliens.

6. Or one of the candidates is an alien. That hasn’t happened in the real world yet. Not that we know of.

5. In comics, a disproportionate number of people are doctors, corporate executives, fashion models and scientists. None of those are careers for which I would qualify, much less succeed. In the real world, I can be a writer.

4. No one in comics spends any time in the bathroom. I have a decent percentage of my library there.

3. In comics, any misunderstanding with a person you just met turns into a knock-down, drag-out fight before you resolve your differences and team-up. In the real world, we have a conversation. And sandwiches.

And, because I was waiting for a mammogram (which was fine, thanks for asking)…

2. In the real world, radiation can detect, and sometimes cure breast cancer. In comics, it can make one Hulk out. I don’t want my tits to get large, green, and super-strong every time they get angry.

1. Or else radiation can make them invisible, stretchy, on fire, or orange and rock hard. We only need one Pamela Anderson, thanks.

SATURDAY: Marc Alan Fishman Sez Comics Are Good For Learnin’


Michael Davis: Don’t Mess With Bill

Michael Davis: Don’t Mess With Bill

No, no no, no…. That’s the title of a very famous song by the Marvelettes. You may be too young to know it by just the title, but I’m pretty sure if you heard it you would recognize it. If you or your parents own any greatest hits albums by Motown then this song is bound to be on there.

If you are really young and a geek fan boy (as am I) let me save you some time. Don’t bother goggling the Marvelettes. They were a singing group, not an all girl or gay men superhero group from Marvel. Now that I think of it, that could work…

But (Peter, I swear I’m writing you a check) I digress.

After the great speech Bill Clinton gave at the Democratic National Convention, “Don’t mess with Bill” could easily have been the heading of a piece about Clinton. Alas, as hard as I tried I could not think of any way to weave a comic book narrative from his speech. Well, I could but that would have meant I’d have to be clever and after the week I’ve had clever would be pushing it.

Trust me, you don’t want to know.

The Bill I’m talking about is my dear friend for over 20 years (since I was five, Jean) Bill Sienkiewicz.

I met Bill when he was doing Moon Knight. I was not a fan; I thought he was one of a long line of artists who were doing their best to copy Neal Adams.  We met at Marvel Comics one day when he was bringing in pages. I think it was Denys Cowan who introduced us and Bill showed me some of his work. I remember thinking two things. The first was the comic book reproductions did not do his work justice. His originals were far and away much better to look at. The second thing I remembered is, yes, his work looked a lot like Neal Adams but that look was just surface deep. There was uniqueness to his work that was all Bill.

After that meeting I went and brought all the back issues of Moon Knight I could and, yeah, by “bought” that means I asked one of my contacts from Marvel to hook me up. Yeah, I got them free, but I would have paid if I had too.

The next time I saw Bill at Marvel he was delivering a painting. It was a New Mutant cover all I could think is; “Shit, this motherfucker can paint also!”

Yeah, I was a bitter bastard. Age and good living has mellowed me, and by mellow I mean “tequila.”

Bill and I had a cordial if not friendly relationship… until one day at some industry event we started talking about illustration. That’s when we clicked. Bill was not a comic book artist who wanted to be an illustrator Bill was an illustrator who was doing comics.

That’s common in the industry now. What people seem to forget is that Bill started that trend. I say without hesitation Bill Sienkiewicz’s art changed the way comic art was done and if not for Bill and his pioneering bad ass work the industry may look different today.

For my money Bill is the artist/illustrator who paved the way for comics to have the depth and artistic reach they have today. Yes there have been comic artists that have painted covers or done innovative designs within the story lines but Bill’s cover work and later his graphic novels elevated the art form to another level. Unlike those who may have dabbled in comics as mainstream illustration up to that point what Bill was doing stuck and spread.

Andy Helfer was a big time editor at DC in the 80s. Denys introduced me to Andy and I showed Andy my painting portfolio.

Andy looked at my work and said “You could be our Bill Sienkiewicz.” Andy was not saying that because my worked looked like Bill’s ­– it didn’t – he was saying it because the kind of work Bill was doing over at Marvel was in a class by its self. That was said by one of comics leading editors working at one of the two biggest comic book publishers during the second silver age of comics.

That’s like giving props to John, Paul, George and Ringo before they became the Beatles. Andy saw clearly that Bill was changing the industry.

I look at all the new talent and groundbreaking work being done today and often think, yeah, that’s nice but Sienkiewicz did that shit 20 years ago.

As with anyone, if you are so good for so long some people tend to not really acknowledge you as you should be acknowledged. And when I say some people I mean young stupid artists. Some people even resent your success if you are the best at what you do and have been doing it for a while. Case in point: people don’t just dislike the Yankees, they hate the Yankees.

I’ve have not run into any people who hate Bill but at this year’s Comic Con I did hear this young artist dismiss Bill’s work and even say “He’s no Alex Ross.”  True. But with all due respect to Alex, if there was no Bill Sienkiewicz there may have been no Alex Ross.

I took a moment to look at the artist’s work and told him he was neither Alex Ross nor Bill Sienkiewicz and talk is cheap, like the portfolio his work was in. I was a bit harsh, but in my defense I was out of tequila…

There really should be an admissions policy to get into artist’s alley. I mean…ugh.

Take a moment to reflect on the immortal words of Dr. Dre…

Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to say

But nothin comes out when they move their lips Just a buncha gibberish

And muthafuckas act like they forgot about Dre…

People forget that Bill changed the game. And he is still changing it.

Bill is one of the greatest artists who have ever worked in comics. I don’t say that because he’s like family to me. I say that because it’s true.

Bill, if you are reading this (and I know you will be because I’m posting it on your Facebook page) if I told you this every day for a year it still would not be enough. You, my friend are a true living legend and I’m proud to be your friend.

But…the next time I give a party at Comic Con and your ass doesn’t show up I’m posting those photos (you know those photos) on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and the Society of Illustrators website.

WEDNESDAY: Mike Gold Gushes Poetown and Teases An Announcement


New Crusaders Brings Archie Heroes Back

With four months of digital success under their belt, Archie Comics brings their superhero stable back to comic shops with the first print issue of New Crusaders, in comic shops this week.  Each issue collecting the four weekly “acts” of the digital release, the comic is a response to the many requests from readers who wanted to see a traditional edition as well.  Archie has done a good job of it, with several special covers and some extra bonuses not seen in the digital release.

Archie Comics superheroes have had a long and varied publishing history. They premiered in 1939, enjoyed a a re-emergence in the 60s, another in the 80s, a couple revivals that never got out of the gate, and two attempted revivals by DC Comics, the woefully underappreciated Impact imprint from the 90s (helmed by our own Mike Gold), and the more recent Red Circle line which started strong with the J. Michael Straczynski books, but never seemed to find its audience.  This time around, Archie has chosen to do the job themselves, and unlike the DC revivals, have made the new series part of the continuity of all their books, starting back in to 40s.  While the book has decades of history and continuity, the book is carefully written to not require knowledge of those stories.  It can easily be picked up as a first issue, with no fear of getting lost.

The members of the superhero team known as the Mighty Crusaders did something never before heard of in the annals of super-herodom; they succeeded.  They beast evil into submission, sent the villains running, and spent the last couple of decades happily retired.  After an explosive tease, the story starts with the Crusaders enjoying a reunion in the peaceful  town of Red Circle, where Mayor Jack (Steel) Sterling is throwing a party for the heroes and their families.  While the heroes reminisce in the Mayoral mansion, their kids are getting to know each other outside.  Lucky for them, because one of their greatest foes, alien overlord the Brain Emperor takes the opportunity to take out his old foes all at once.  Only Joe Higgins, the original Shield, escapes, and manages to get the kids to safety in his home, or more specifically, his secret headquarters below, where he’s maintained vigilance for the return of their enemies.

Ian Flynn, who’s made quite a name for himself piloting both of Archie’s big video game franchises, Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man, handles the writing for the series, and he’s got a solid grasp of what makes an action comic work.  Even more importantly, as the digital book is coming out six pages at a time, he’s been able to pace the story so that each weekly chapter reads like a complete adventure, yet still flows smoothly in this single-issue format. Artist Ben Bates has a wonderful open style – his characters are drawn simply, his layouts uncluttered, very reminiscent of Impact artist Mike Parobeck; an art that is complex without being overly busy.  There’s lots of easter eggs for older readers; the aforementioned city of “Red Circle” is only the first. In addition to the main adventure, this issue features a reprint of a original Shield story from the 80’s run of the series, written by Marty Greim and art by industry vets Dick Ayres and Rich Buckler.

The print edition of New Crusaders publishes monthly.  The digital edition is available via an iPhone app and for the web and other devices via the Iverse website.  For a 99 cent weekly subscription, readers receive a new six-page chapter each week, as well as access to a growing library of the classic MLJ/Radio/Archie runs of the comics.  For the occasional “Fifth week”, a second series, Lost Crusade, will fill in the blanks of the events between the end of the 80s run of adventures and the new ones.  It’s one of the best digital books being done by a major publisher right now, and both it and the new print edition are well worth a look

For those interested in learning more about the members of the Crusaders, I have a series of histories up on my website:

The Shield

The Comet

The Web

Steel Sterling


John Ostrander: Political Television Theater

The late great newspaper columnist, Mike Royko, once observed of the Chicago city council (I’m paraphrasing), “I never said it was the most politically corrupt council in the world; I said it was the most theatrically politically corrupt council in the world.” There is an inherent theatricality and drama in politics; more so in an election year and a lot more so this election year.

It can also make for good television. Or not, depending on the show. Let’s look at three that are running this summer.

The first is the six episode Political Animals on USA on Sundays at 10 PM. It stars Sigourney Weaver and has a pretty stellar cast, including Ellen Burstyn, Carla Gugino, Vanessa Redgrave and Ciaran Hinds. Weaver plays a (very) Hillary Clinton-esque character, once married to a philandering Southern president (Hinds), then a failed candidate for her party’s presidential candidate, and then Secretary of State to the guy who beat her. She also has two sons: one a hard working straight arrow who is also her chief aide and the other a gay man with lots of problems including substance abuse.

I was really looking forward to this one and now I don’t know if I’ll finish watching the series. It’s more soap opera than anything else and relies too much on the Clinton comparisons to the point of making it predictable. Ciaran Hinds is a wonderful actor (as seen in the wonderful Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day and many other films) but he’s a caricature in this as Weaver’s Bill Clinton-esque husband. He’s more buffoon than anything else and makes Weaver’s character look stupid by her constant return to him.

There’s also stupid plot twists. Weaver’s character, Elaine Barrish Hammond, has decided to run again for president against her boss, the sitting president. That’s never worked for any candidate and she would know that (in fact, it’s pointed out to her in the show); she would become persona-non-grata within her own party and this character is supposed to be politically astute. And I can’t fathom the reason she would do it.

Also, it’s her gay son who has all the emotional problems and drug abuse and that’s so stereotyped. It would have been a lot more interesting if the gay son was the top aide and the straight son who had the emotional problems but that’s not the choice they made.

If I was Hillary Clinton, I’d sue.

Over on HBO, The Newsroom is on the same day and time and it’s Aaron Sorkin’s latest foray into television and it has all of Sorkin’s strengths and weaknesses. Whether you like it or not may be determined by whether or not you like Sorkin; I do so I’m enjoying myself.

The series is set in the newsroom (fancy that) of a nightly news hour show set on a mythical cable news network. Jeff Daniels (who I have long enjoyed as an actor) plays the starring role of Will McAvoy, the anchor who had been coasting too long until he answers a question honestly on a panel. His boss, Charlie Skinner (played by Sam Waterston who is plainly having a good time with this part) brings in McAvoy’s former girlfriend (and lost love), MacKenzie MacHale (played by Emily Mortimer) as McAvoy’s new producer and she shakes him up to the point where he becomes Keith Olbermann (sorta). I should also mention that the head of the network is played by Jane Fonda, the former Mrs. Ted Turner, who is also having too much fun.

Cannily, the show is set in the recent past (within the past two years approximately) that allows Sorkin to comment with a perspective of time passed. He has described it as a “political fantasy” enabling him to show how he wished things had been reported. Yes, that allows him to preach but, in general, his politics and mine coincide so I enjoy it.

I do have my problems with the show. Too many of the female characters get addled in ways that their male counterparts don’t. The exception appears to be Jane Fonda’s character thus far, but we’ll see. From what I’ve read, Sorkin had a traumatic break-up with a girlfriend and it appears to be factoring into a lot of his work. For me, the plusses far outweigh the minuses on this show. It’s been renewed for a second season and I’ll be there.

In passing, I’ll mention Boss on Starz, featuring Kelsey Grammar as the mayor of Chicago. You would think this would be a natural for me, Chicago boy that I am and raised during the era of the first Mayor Daley. I bailed after a few episodes. Too sudsy.

My last selection is Suits which is in its second season on USA Thursday nights at 10 PM. It stars Gabriel Macht, Patrick J. Adams, Rick Hoffman and the spectacular Gina Torres, who you’ll remember from Firefly. This is less about the world of politics and much more about office politics as practiced in a high-level law firm. I think someone once said ”All politics are personal” and this is very much the case here.

Patrick J. Adams plays Mike Ross, a brilliant college dropout who winds up working for Harvey Specter (Macht) even though he doesn’t have a law degree, a fact that both of them conceal – which is illegal and, if it got out, would do serious damage to the firm. The office, sexual, and romantic politics are all high level and so is the writing and the performances. Of the three series I mentioned here, this is far and away my favorite. The characters, all of them, are a mixture of faults and virtues. This is not a bunch of people I would have thought I would ever identify with but I wouldn’t miss a single episode.

Oh, and there’s also Donna, Harvey’s redheaded secretary, played with élan and brio by Sarah Rafferty. She’s hot, she’s brainy, she’s sharp with a line and it’s worth tuning in just to see her. All the female characters are really strong, especially Gina Torres as Jessica Pearson, the managing partner of the firm who is beautiful, smart, and sometimes utterly ruthless and scary.

So you can vote with your remote and, as we say in Chicago, remember to vote early and often.

MONDAY: Mindy Newell


Dennis O’Neil: The News Re-Cycle

There was something I wanted to discuss…what the devil was it? Something about a theater in Oklahoma, Colorado, Wyoming – one of those cowboy states. But have you heard about that movie star from the vampire flicks and how she admitted to cheating on her boyfriend? Boy! Wasn’t that something? Wonder if they’ll get back together. I kind of hope so because it’s always sad when young love goes blooey, though that seems to be mostly what young love does. These days, anyhow. Now when we were young… Oh wait. I did get dumped at tender age 21, didn’t I? Well, good luck to the youngsters, anyway.

Back to that cowboy state – was it a movie theater or some other kind of theater? A music hall, maybe?

And speaking of music… Elton John’s kid is just turning one year old. Bet Elton throws him a heck of a party.

And while we’re on the subject of music…Did you hear that JLo is quitting American Idol? You’ve got to wonder what that’s really about. She says she wants to devote herself to performing, but Idol’s ratings are sinking and has it been the same since Simon Cowell split? Some might say yes, some might say no. Me – I’m just asking.

Seen any of the Olympics? Monday Michael Phelps got his Speedo kicked. Came in fourth in a swim race. Fourth! Michael Phelps! Last Olympics, he medaled eight times and now…a fourth. You know, he was caught in a photo smoking weed, or at least holding the kind of pipe used to smoke weed – I forget the details – and you gotta wonder… I mean, they say that weed doesn’t hurt athletics – “they” being weed smokers – but still…

Did that business in the cowboy state –was it Texas? – have anything to do with smoking in a theater? Or maybe smoking out on the prairie, where the deer and the antelope play? Maybe smoking is allowed in theaters west of, say, Kansas. I can’t remember when I was in a western theater, but I’m sure I must have been in one some time – probably during one of my visits to California. Don’t recall what the smoking situation was.

One more item before we abandon the Olympics… did you see that some of the athletes got in trouble for pictures they posted online, or Tweeted, or something like that? One of those cyber things that seem to consume people my children’s age, or maybe younger. Yes, let’s say younger! I don’t know what the pictures showed, but how bad could they be? A shot of somebody smoking weed? Would that be considered bad? I mean, didn’t the president admit to trying the stuff at a party?

Wait! The president and his chief opponent and that western state… Something about what those guys are saying? Or not saying?

Well, end of the day, who cares? I mean, whatever happened happened last week – ancient history, no? And there are so many other things to think about.

FRIDAY: Martha Thomases and her Green Lantern Problem


Mike Gold: Four-Color Friendships

It was an interesting party. Held in a Mason lodge, I got to hang out with The Point’s Mike Raub, former ComicMix columnist and book writer and moviemaker Ric Meyers, and Adriane Nash, the one woman condemned to be both a ComicMixer and an employee of arrogantMGMS. And a whole bunch of old friends, about 72 of which used to be in the comic book retail business.

It’s not that I would be friendless if not for the comics racket. Since I spend a healthy amount of time in politics, social services, broadcasting and more dubious endeavors, I know a few folks who couldn’t tell the several dozen current Spider-Men apart – and politely couldn’t care less. They humor me nonetheless.

But it is safe to say most of my enduring friendships are comics-related. I’ve known Mr. Raub for, damn, three-dozen years. Glenn Hauman and I met when he was a “small” child hiding in DC’s darkroom, back when the Earth was still cooling. John Ostrander and I have been buddies since before Watergate; we met through Chicago theater connections and were both herded into a corner at a party in those ancient days because, as comics fans, we “had something to talk about.” Ah, those days when geeks were treated like… geeks.

The list goes on and on. I’ve had the privilege and honor to work with my friends and that has worked out wonderfully more than 99% of the time. There are maybe only two or three people I regret working with – I’ve mended fences with others; creative egos are a mixed blessing and I’ve got one that’s louder than a Sousa march. There’s only one person in comics I actually wish to murder; I’ve spent less time and energy in broadcasting and that list is both longer and older.

So this comics donut shop, to paraphrase Chico Escuela, has been berra berra good… to me.

I’m all backward-looking because this Saturday is my birthday – I turn real, real old; I mean, Mel Brooks old – and seeing all these old friends in one room was a heady event.

Despite its massive expansion (says the man who refers to the San Diego convention as the “black hole of media shows”) and the generational differences and the public’s near-acceptance of geekdom, there remains a closeness in the comics community that, to my experience, is unparalleled elsewhere. Even people who truly hate each other are on a first name basis.

I highly recommend it. This is one hell of a donut shop.

THURSDAY: Dennis O’Neil


Mindy Newell: Moving Day

I had one hell of a weekend, and I don’t mean that in the swinging wild party, gorgeous male strippers in thongs stuffed with dollar bills, wake up and don’t remember what the hell happened. I mean hell in all its Dante’s Inferno Nine-Circles-Of, sturm und drang blitzkrieg, complete with crying jags and sheer, utterly emotional exhaustion.

We moved my parents to what is called in healthcare parlance a “continuous care retirement community.” They’re still living independently. It’s not quite assisted living. Yet.

Not that it’s a bad place. Actually, it’s quite lovely. Their new apartment is more spacious than the place they left; we didn’t have to get rid of any of their furniture, and by the time I left early yesterday afternoon, it looked like “home,” especially after brother Glenn, daughter Alix and her husband Jeff hung all the pictures and what-nots and set up the phone and the cable TV.

Actually, my brother was there with the cable guy when we arrived, so we didn’t miss any of the Olympics opening ceremony. Of course Queen Elizabeth II, with a little help from Daniel Craig, absolutely rocked the evening. Her outfit was stunning – luved the feathered “fascinator” she wore instead of one her standard hats, which I wouldn’t be surprised to find out her new granddaughter Kate picked out – and watching Her Majesty was lots better than watching Team USA wearing Ralph Lauren by way of a Chinese sweatshop.

Previously, my parents had Cablevision but now they have Comcast, so they’re having trouble figuring out how to use the remote, which is waaaaay more complicated and harder to read than the remote you get from Cablevision and Comcast’s channel guide is waaaay more “busy” (visually) than Cablevision’s, which really, really, sucks when you have macular degeneration like my dad does.

And the apartment overlooks a small lake with swans and a walking path and a gazebo. The staff is superb, caring and friendly, everything you could possibly want for your parents. And several of the residents were sort of a “welcome wagon” for Mr. and Mrs. Newell, accompanying them to their first meals in the main dining room.

But the first thing my mom said to me on Saturday morning, when she woke up in her new home was “I want to go home.”

I gave her a big hug, we talked, she went into the shower. I went outside and sat on one of the lovely rocking chairs on the lovely front porch and had three cigarettes in a row…between tears.

But I basically held it together – hung up their clothes in their new closets, folded the shirts and sweaters in the bedroom furniture, even did the laundry for them while they were went to dinner – until this morning, when I lost it completely. The above-mentioned sturm und drang blitzkrieg, complete with crying jag.

Absolutely the wrong thing to do in front of my parents, who are stressed enough. Pissed off Glenn and Alix, disturbed Jeff.

So I went out for a ride. Went to the nearest WaWa, got a whole bunch of bagels – plain, garlic, onion, and pumpernickel. Checked out some nearby dry cleaners, which is the one service the retirement community doesn’t offer. Stopped at Rite-Aid and picked up some personal sundries for Mom.

And smoked some more cigarettes. (I admit it, I smoked a lot of cigarettes this weekend.)

And popped a Xanax.

So here I am, sitting at the computer, writing this column. Meant to write about moving, what it would be like to be Superman moving all that shit, Terran and intergalactic, to the Fortress of Solitude from his apartment in Metropolis. Wondering what was in Diana’s suitcases when she left Themiscrya. And how many times the moving vans have pulled into and out of the driveway of Avengers’ Mansion, with the constantly changing membership of that organization.

And where the parents of super-heroes – and super-villains, for that matter – go when they’re unable to live on their own.

But I’m just too exhausted and emotionally spent tonight to think about make-believe.

Life got in the way for me this week.

TUESDAY: Emily S. Whitten and 15 Minutes


Michael Davis: Aftermath

I’m back from another San Diego Comic Con.

For almost 20 years (since I was five, Jean) I’ve given a party, a dinner, or both. For nearly that long I’ve hosted the Black Panel.

I’ve had some fantastic events to be sure, but I must say 2012 was my best event year ever. My best party, my best dinner and my best Black Panel.

That, if I say so myself, is saying something.

The party and my panel were reviewed by many news outlets including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Comic Book Resources and the powerhouse Machinima.

Every year after the Black Panel, the haters come out in force. There are black people that hate the panel; there are white people that hate the panel.

Guess what? I win.

Until you haters get your own panel at Comic Con, throw your own party and get reviewed by some of the biggest news outlets in the world you are more than welcome to hate me.

I will endeavor to do what I can to continue to give meaning to your small life. I will continue to do great things so that you can go on the net and bitch that way you will feel important and in your mind you are.

You are a legend in your own mind.

I’ll be happy to comment on your success if in fact you were successful at anything except being a legend in your own mind.

So, haters continue to hate, because I win. Why do I win?

Because you are talking about me.

Who is talking about you?

Tuesday Afternoon: Emily S. Whitten and the Civil War

Wednesday Morning: Mike Gold, Creators’ Rights, and One Big Wrong



Michael Davis: Frankly my dear, they don’t give a damn.

The title of this article is a variation on the most memorable film quote ever. “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn” spoken by Rhett Butler to Scarlet O’Hara in the immortal film, Gone With The Wind is the number one movie quote of all time, according to The American Film Institute.

After over two hours of actual time and years of movie time Rhett had finally had enough of Scarlet being a bitch and let her know how he felt. When Rhett finally let Scarlet know he was sick of her shit she came to a realization that she did indeed love him.

If Rhett and Scarlet were from the hood that conversation would have went a little something like this:

Scarlet: Rhett, don’t go. I love you!

Rhett: Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn…bitch.

That classic movie in so many ways reminds me of the San Diego Comic Con and Hollywood. How so, you ask?

This so. Every year Hollywood comes to SDCC and every year Hollywood studios, agencies, stars and starlets throw parties. There are as many Hollywood parties as there are reasons to hate Mitt Romney.

That’s a lot of parties.

Every year it seems that little or no comic book people are invited to those Hollywood parties. I know of what I speak as I get invited to a bunch of those parties. I stopped going a few years ago. I got sick and tired of being at a party and the only mofo I knew from the industry was whoever was my plus 1.

Yes, there are exceptions. I’m sure that Len Wein and his creative peers get invited to any studio party that is making one of their characters into a movie or TV show. I’m sure Len gets to bring a few of his peeps but a room full of comic book people you will not see at a Hollywood party.

Except at my parties. Yes, I always have a cool ass celebrity host, this year it’s Jamie Kennedy, and yes I have big name Hollywood types attending but the majority of my guests are good old fashion SDCC and comic book folk.

Yep, good old comic book geeks. Friends of mine, creators I just meet at the con, retailors, mega fans, moms of mega fans and random hot Asian women who I just so happen to find invites for after I have no more invites. Go figure.

Speaking of moms, last year I met this woman who brought her grown ass son to the convention but could not get a pass for her self. We got her a pass to the con and she spent a great deal of my party hanging out with Wayne Brady. That, if I say so myself, was cool.

I’m not knocking Hollywood because that’s just the way they operate. I’m still amazed at the people that got mad at the tiger for mauling Roy. Don’t blame the tiger for being a tiger. I can’t blame Hollywood for being a selfish self-congratulatory entity that sees the comic book industry as an ugly stepchild.

But I’d like all my comic book and SDCC friends and colleagues to remember one thing…

The San Diego Comic Con is our house.

We build it. We own it. We live there.

I do believe that one day soon Hollywood will fully accept us for what we are: an industry without which they would be banking on films like My Left Foot to do 100 million in a weekend.

Yeah, like that shit is ever going to happen.

I hope to see you guys at SDCC and perhaps at my party Friday night.

Oh, and Hollywood, get your shit together, don’t make us go all Rhett Butler on your ass.

TUESDAY AFTERNOON: Emily S. Whitten Speaks Enlightenment

WEDNESDAY MORNING: Mike Gold Marvels Now and Again

New York’s Forbidden Planet moving to bigger space

201207061709 NYCs Forbidden Planet comics store moving to bigger space

Long rumored to be moving (perhaps due to the giant FOR RENT sign on the building), Forbidden Planet, one of NYC’s longest-running comics shops, is moving a few doors down the street to larger digs, according to manager Jeff Ayers. The new location, 832 Broadway (between 13th and 12th Streets), provides 3400 sq. feet of space for comics, toys and games, and it’s the largest of the three spaces the store has held on that same block over the years.

“This expansion has been necessary for some time now, and will allow us to provide our customers with even more product selection and depth, while streamlining the store’s layout to one convenient floor,” said Ayers in a statement.

The new store opens Tuesday, July 24th 2012 in a “soft launch,” but there will be a bigger launch party later. The olde shoppe closes on Sunday, July 22nd.

The olde shoppe had a nice corner location but definitely was a bit cramped and narrow…we’ll look forward to checking out the new space.

The new building:
201207061711 NYCs Forbidden Planet comics store moving to bigger space