Tagged: party

SDCC: CBLDF’s Comic-Con Welcome Party!

Kick off Comic-Con with the greatest stars in comics to celebrate 20 Years of Image Comics and the power of free expression at the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s Comic-Con Welcome Party! Starting at 8:00 PM on Thursday, July 12 at the Westgate Hotel, the CBLDF Comic-Con Welcome Party is jam-packed with amazing people and cool stuff! This party is sponsored by Image Comics, TFAW.Com, Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, & Threadless!

Experience Creativity with Image Comics greats including:
Ales Kot, Amanda Conner, Ben McCool, Ben Templesmith, Brandon Seifert, Charles Soule, Chris Giarrusso, Cory Walker, Dan Brereton, Darick Robertson, Deborah Vankin, Dexter Weeks, Dirk Manning, Edwin Huang,Eric Shanower, Eric Stephenson, Erik Larsen, Gerry Duggan, Glen Brunswick, Jim Mahfood, Jim McCann, Jim Valentino, Jim Zub, Jimmy Palmiotti, Joe Keatinge, John Layman, Joshua Hale Fialkov, Joshua Williamson, Kody Chamberlain, Kurtis Wiebe, Mark Poulton,Matt Hawkins, Michael Moreci, Moritat, Nate Bellegarde, Nathan Edmondson, Phil Noto, Richard Starkings, Ron Marz, S. Steven Struble, Scott Tuft, Sina Grace, Steve Seeley, and many more!

revival-cover-low-res-195x300-1364256Get The Exclusive Goods: Free gift bag, featuring a CBLDF party exclusive edition of Revival #1 by Tim Seeley & Mike Norton from Image Comics, and other special thank yous from CBLDF supporters including Valiant and Threadless!

See The World Premiere of “The Day The Saucers Came:” Be the first to see the latest Comics-On Tees from Threadless featuring Neil Gaiman’s “The Day The Saucers Came,” featuring artwork by John Cassaday, Brandon Graham & Ben Templesmith at a special fashion show! Get your tees straight from the source at the party!

Smell Awesome At The Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab Trading Post: BPAL will make their only Comic-Con appearance at the party, setting up a one-night only display of fragrances, including the world premiere of new fragrances based on Neil Gaiman’s Coraline!

Check Out The Amazing Items In CBLDF’s Comic-Con Auction, sponsored by TFAW.Com & Valiant Comics:
Check out all the amazing original art up for grabs at Saturday’s CBLDF Comic-Con Auction live!

Come support Free Speech and experience the best of Comic-Con at the CBLDF Comic-Con Welcome Party Thursday at the Westgate Hotel, 1055 Second Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101 from 8 PM to 11 PM! This party is FREE for CBLDF Members. Non-Members, suggested $10 – $20 donation at the door, please.

Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Image has since gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. Image currently has five partners: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino. It consists of five major houses: Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline, Skybound and Image Central. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable. It offers science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. For more information, visit www.imagecomics.com.

We’re awesome people from all over the world who make mind-blowing art. Our process starts when a great idea is born in an artist’s mind. (That could be you, that could even be your grannie!) The artist submits their idea to our site, where our community of 1.5 million debates, discusses, and votes on that idea. If the idea gets a really good score, we make it into a tee, tote, hoody, or tube sock. (That last one isn’t true… yet.) Then, as long as folks keep buying that product, we keep rewarding that artist with loadsa money, prizes, and exposure. So people who buy from us support great artists and their great ideas. Neat, huh? Join us at Threadless.com. Threadless ~ Make Great Together.

Founded in 1979, Things From Another World is the premier retailer of comics, toys, collectibles, and pop-culture geek goodness, both in Portland, Oregon and online at http://www.TFAW.com.

We specialize in formulating body and household blends with a dark, romantic Gothic tone. Our scents run the aesthetic gamut of magickal, pagan and mythological blends, Renaissance, Medieval and Victorian formulas, and horror / Gothic-themed scents. By utilizing our knowledge of homeopathy and aromatherapy, the conceptual theories of hermetic alchemy, and the aesthetic artistry of perfumery, we have mastered the art of encapsulating allegorical ideas into singular olfactory experiences. We are the first of our kind, and have over fifteen years of practical experience in the field. Our expertise shows.

We pride ourselves on the artistry of our products, and our skill in their creation. All of our products are hand-blended here in our laboratory. Integrity and dedication is vitally important to us, and we do our best to provide the best possible product and slavishly good service to all our clients.

Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of the First Amendment rights of the comics art form and its community of retailers, creators, publishers, librarians, and readers. The CBLDF provides legal referrals, representation, advice, assistance, and education in furtherance of these goals.

Emily S. Whitten: Making Lunch Breaks Everywhere More Fun Since…Now?

What I’m about to tell you may seem shocking, given that you all must think my entire week is taken up by laboring over each of my beautiful, wonderful, perfectly polished and amazingly insightful columns (really, they’re good enough for framing, every one), and that’s 100% true. But I’m an excellent multi-tasker (it’s one of my secret superheroine powers, along with the Gift of OCD), and so at the same time as I am cogitating about, compiling, and composing said columns, I’m also magically working a regular 9-5 – or sometimes 10-6, Odin and all his Asgardians bless flex-time.

So, like some of you other folks out there who are concerned with paying the bills and all that nonsense and thus have desk jobs, I sometimes spend my lunch time stuck in front of my office computer with just a few free minutes to obtain sustenance and enjoy a mini-vacation from Work. Sometimes I think to myself, “Hey, now would be a good time to catch up on the news, maybe see how that health care reform thing is going to affect me or something.” And then I laugh at such a silly idea, and I go read webcomics.

Just in case this is something you’ve never tried on your lunch break, let me tell you that it’s infinitely better than reading the news, and studies (to be cited when I make some up and post them on respectable-looking science websites) have shown that it improves both your mood and your good looks. In fact, if you read webcomics at every lunch break, by about three weeks in you’ll be a Happiness Guru and also look like Angelina Jolie or one of these other fine ladies. Which is maybe too bad if you’re a guy, but them’s the breaks.

Since I’m a veteran webcomics-at-lunchbreak reader, I thought I’d take this opportunity to share some of my favorites with you. These aren’t necessarily super-secret cutting edge webcomics – some are quite popular and you’ve probably heard of them before, and some have even been around for years – but really, the internet is so big and full of things, I have to think at least some of you haven’t encountered some of these before. Maybe? Anyway, they’re some of the ones that make me happy so I wanted to share.

So here’s a little bit about each one, and, to help you avoid Archive Panic, three random favorite entries for each so that you can quickly see whether they might be your kind of thing. Enjoy!

XKCD is “a webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math, and language,” but I don’t think that does it justice. Randall Munroe somehow manages to encompass every topic at some point or another while keeping a coherent tone, and even has some ongoing characters and mini-storylines going in what is, essentially, a bunch of one-shot comics. Sometimes it makes me laugh, sometimes it makes me nod in agreement, sometimes it’s profound and makes me think, and sometimes I even learn math and science-y things from it. Win! Make sure you hover your mouse over the comics for added fun.

Three favorites:


Hamster Ball


Hyperbole and a Half is a blog by Allie Brosh; and, okay, it might not exactly be a webcomic in the traditional sense. But it is a series of stories told with graphic accompaniment (of the amazingly-funny-in-Allie’s-hands MS Paint variety) and it’s extremely hilarious, so I’m putting it on the list. It pretty much consists of Allie sharing about her life and childhood; and if that sounds rather mundane to you, give it a read and you’ll be in for a surprise.

Three favorites:

The Alot is Better Than You At Everything

This Is Why I’ll Never Be An Adult

The Party

The Oatmeal is a site which features both comics and quizzes, and which you may have seen in the news lately. I mostly go for the comics, but on the other hand I have also fallen prey to quizzes like, “How Many Justin Biebers Could You Take In A Fight” (16!) which are fun too. The art is sometimes grotesque but conversely also sometimes adorable, and the comics are often insightful (oh, professional web design; how I remember all of your myriad headaches) or educational (Nikola Tesla facts, yay!).

Three Favorites:

Cat vs. Internet

How a Web Design Goes Straight to Hell

8 Ways to Prepare Your Pets for War

A Softer World is sort of hard to describe. It pairs photos with a few lines of text to great effect. I’d call it quirky but that might imply it’s always fun, which, honestly, it’s not. Sometimes it is, and sometimes it’s poignant, sometimes it’s joyful, and sometimes it’s bleak and sad or nonsensical or twisted or downright disturbing; but maybe that’s what makes me like it? Whatever the case, it’s always interesting.

Three favorites:

I can contain it, if I have to.

don’t be so foolish

Oh! Oh man, we should bring an old-timey lantern!

The DM of the Rings is summed up succinctly by its author –  “Imagine a gaggle of modern hack-n-slash roleplayers who had somehow never been exposed to the original Tolkien mythos, and then imagine taking those players and trying to introduce them to Tolkien via a D&D campaign.” I’ve never really played D&D but I’m fairly familiar with it, and that (and/or a decent understanding of human nature) is really all you need to get a laugh out of this one (and the accompanying notes, which are also a fun read). It’s kind of tricky to pick “favorites” since this one’s a tightly continuous story, but here are three anyway.

Three Favorites:

Uphill Battle

The Tenacity of Greed

Overly Requited Love

pictures for sad children is cynical and sort of bleakly terrible but also sometimes funny and pretty addictive for some reason I can’t really explain. it starts out with a story about “PAUL: who is a ghost.” and it’s sort of sequential but not always. and then it changes to one-shot comics that aren’t really connected. and it is kind of written in disjointed sentences, and the author mostly doesn’t know what capital letters are. give it a try.

three favorites:

the comic that dares to stare

how to explain the puddle

later you will regret putting trash in your ears

The Non-Adventures of Wonderella is all about Wonderella, who’s, you know, kind of like Wonder Woman, if Wonder Woman were a bit more…human? Rude? Boozy? Valley girl? Interested in shopping? Politically incorrect? Whatever you call her, Wonderella’s having fun in her own way while (sometimes) saving the day, and it makes for fun, if sometimes absurd, reading.

POWER Couple

SATAN on the Dock of the Bay

RANG in the New

Penny Arcade is mostly about video games and gaming, with frequent geek culture commentary, and features the dry and self-deprecating wit of its two completely awesome creators. It’s been around for yearrrrs but that doesn’t mean it’s old news. It always makes me smile.

Three favorites:

The Adventures of Twisp and Catsby

The Glass Tweet

Retales, Part Two

Bonus Comic!

Which isn’t actually a comic. Okay, I’m cheating here, but for those of you who are able to watch YouTube at work (read: not me, WOE), here’s a fun video thing you really need to check out on your next lunch break.

I’m a Marvel…and I’m a DC started out as a video parody of the Mac/PC commercial, and evolved into its own awesome collection of stories and series videos. For more sequential stories, check out the After Hours and Happy Hours playlists or other playlists; or just tool around the videos that strike your fancy, because they’re all awesome.

Or, just check out my favorite (of course) Rorschach and Deadpool.

Hope I’ve brought a little joy to your lunch hour! And of course, there are a lot of other great webcomics out there too, including a bunch I’m sure I haven’t heard of. What’s your favorite? Tell me in the comments!

And until next time, Servo Lectio!

WEDNESDAY MORNING: Mike Gold, Bourne on the Fourth of July


REVIEW: Project X

Growing up, I went to plenty of parties, but never one when the parents were out of town. I always felt I missed out on something until I heard the time my younger cousin held such an affair, resulting in $1500 in property damage (in 1980 dollars). Call me uptight or a loser, much as Thomas (Thomas Mann), is in Project X.

Designed to be the ultimate party film, it was based on the recollections of various people who attended outrageous parties while parents were out of town. Cobbling the stories together, Michael Bacall and Matt Drake wrote a script and director Nima Nourizadeh sought out relative unknowns and total unknowns to populate the cast, giving it a fresh feel. Eight different camera systems were used including the main images purportedly shot by an AV studio Dax (Dax Flame) and cell phones given to various extras, who shot moments without others realizing it.

The $12 million film has more than made its money back while inspiring several aborted attempts at recreating the ultimate blowout for real. Coming to home video Tuesday, the Combo Pack contains seven more minutes of raunch in an extended cut along with the featurettes “Tallying up the Damage” and “Project X: Declassified”.

The basic problem with the film is that everything is amped up to the point of ridiculousness, without being grounded in any reality. While some have compared this with the 1970’s Animal House and 1980’s Risky Business, they have missed the point. Those films featured brilliant casting, terrific directing and a rhythm that allowed the really outrageous stuff to occur. This terrible film avoids any pretense.

It also is missing any sense of originality. We’ve seen it all before. Thomas is a loser, his parents are going out of town and tell him they know he’ll have people over regardless of what they say so Dad asks that they be kept out of his office and not to touch his car (telling you immediately that is exactly what will happen). Costa (Oliver Cooper) and J.B. (Jonathan Daniel Brown) decide to turn the party into a birthday bash that will turn all three losers into heroes. The word spreads and people come by foot, car, and bus. Dozens becomes hundreds become thousands. Neighbors call the police, who somehow miss several hundred people in the backyard, and the party escalates out of control until the SWAT team is called in but by then so has the flame-throwing-toting drug dealer. Really.

The footage shows plenty of topless girls, drinking, dancing, and general partymaking. What’s missing is anyone to root for. Everyone attending the party is unlikeable save for the predictable love interest Kirby (Kirby Bliss Blanton). The film also lacks a set piece, the one truly original and memorable moment that gets people talking and makes the film immortal. This is just a wasted opportunity without any merit whatsoever.

Mindy Newell: Success And Failure, Part 3

Picking up the thread…

College a no-go. Work a disaster. Israel a bust.

Spending a lonely night sitting in the terminal at Lod Airport (now David Ben Gurion Airport) waiting for my 5 A.M. flight to New York. Trying to ignore leering men. Struggling to stay awake. Not knowing where to go or what to do. Thinking I didn’t have a friend in the world. Nor a family. Believing they were so disgusted with me that my dad would rather foot the bill to keep me away from home than have me there. Wishing I was brave enough to go to Paris, London, Rome or Madrid. All I had to do was exchange the ticket.

That was the worst part, I think. Some part of me was mocking herself. Even as I checked in, as I was boarding, while I was finding my seat, some part of me was mocking, laughing hideously, scoffing and scorning.

Coward. Loser. Fuck-up.

Poor little lost girl.

I landed at JFK Airport. No one there to meet me.  Three hours later my mom and my Aunt Ida showed up.

Aunt Ida. She had an uncanny ability to show up when I was in trouble or unhappy, no matter where or far away I happened to be.

The first time was when I was staying at my Aunt Augie’s house on Long Island while my parents went on a trip. My aunt had gotten me an absolutely beautiful party dress to wear to a birthday party. Only it had a crinoline undergarment. Crinoline, for those of you too young to remember, was a god-awful material that looked like lace soaked in lacquer. It was as stiff as a board and scratched – no, stabbed – the skin. Well, my aunt put me in this dress and I was in pain. I cried and carried on and basically threw your average terrible childhood tantrum, even throwing ice cream into the face of the birthday girl. (I was really little, which perhaps explains my inability to simply tell my aunt that the dress “wasn’t working for me.”) Even after the dress came off, I continued to sob. After hours of this, the doorbell rang. Aunt Augie went to the door, and there stood her sister (my mom’s sister, too, of course), my Aunt Ida. I ran into her arms, screaming Fairy Godmother! Help me!! In her arms I quieted.  (Poor Aunt Augie. I so hurt her feelings.)

The second time that stands out in my memory is the time I was seven years old, and away at camp. I was climbing a tree. Climbing higher and higher, ignoring everyone far below me to come down. I climbed until I couldn’t climb any higher, and promptly fell off the tree. Whomp! A perfect executed, score ten, belly flop. My face kissed the pavement. Hell, my face tongued the pavement.  I remember voices around me. And lifting my eyes to see… my fairy godmother. Aunt Ida.

And here she was again, my fairy godmother. Come to rescue me from JFK airport.

Come to rescue me from myself.

Next week: “All you can do is open up the throttle all the way and keep your nose up in the air.”

First Lieutenant Meyer C. Newell

P-51 Mustang Fighter Jock

Separated from his squadron, shot up and leaking hydraulic fluid somewhere in the skies over Burma

TUESDAY MORNING: Michael Davis Isn’t Happy Until…

TUESDAY AFTERNOON: Emily S. Whitten Goes Splitsville!



Chip Kidd Is Guest of Honor at CBLDF’s Book Expo Party!

Celebrate free speech at this year’s Book Expo by raising a toast to CHIP KIDD on Tuesday, June 5th in a benefit to support the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund!

A VIP cocktail reception starts at 7 PM. Kidd will present a behind-the-scenes look at creating this book, and all attendees will receive an extremely limited copy of BATMAN: DEATH BY DESIGN, with an exclusive signed and numbered bookplate, designed by Mr. Kidd. These bookplated editions are extremely limited, and will be available one time only. Hors d’Oeuvres will be served. This is a ticketed event, with limited admission available for a $50 donation to the CBLDF. Reserve your ticket here.

At 8:30 pm, an open release party and book signing will begin. Copies of BATMAN: DEATH BY DESIGN will be available at the venue! (No ticket needed for this portion of the evening, but a suggested donation at the door is appreciated)

The event happens at SMITHFIELD, 215 West 28th Street New York, NY 10001.


Writer: Chip Kidd, Artist: Dave Taylor

In this new, original graphic novel from superstar writer/designer Chip Kidd and artist Dave Taylor, Gotham City is undergoing one of the most expansive construction booms in its history. The most prestigious architects from across the globe have buildings in various phases of completion all over town. As chairman of the Gotham Landmarks Commission, Bruce Wayne has been a key part of this boom, which signals a golden age of architectural ingenuity for the city. And then, the explosions begin.

All manner of design-related malfunctions – faulty crane calculations, sturdy materials suddenly collapsing, software glitches, walkways giving way and more – cause casualties across the city. This bizarre string of seemingly random catastrophes threatens to bring down the whole construction industry. Fingers are pointed as Batman must somehow solve the problem and find whoever is behind it all.

This event will take place at 7 pm, June 5th, at SMITHFIELD, 215 West 28th Street New York, NY 10001

Tickets for the 7 PM Cocktail Hour Available at http://cbldf.myshopify.com/products/batman-death-by-design-release-party-and-presentation


MICHAEL DAVIS: The Greatest Story Never Told, Part 3

Portrait of former DC Comics publisher and pre...

Please read the last two week’s installments before reading this. Thanks!

What has gone before, quick and dirty recap… I’d sold (in my opinion) the second greatest idea in the history of comics to one of the greatest publishers in the business. It was to be written by one of the greatest writers (Dwayne McDuffie) with art by a guy (me) who was going to make sure this time he got it right.

All was right in the world. Except for one teensy little problem. The editor assigned to the project wanted to change one thing…


A few days after Jenette Kahn assigned the editor, Dwayne went to meet with him to map out the production schedule.  I was living in Los Angeles and the meeting was in the New York offices of DC. There really was no reason for me to be there. After the meeting Dwayne would call and fill me in.

I couldn’t wait for that call. In hindsight, yes, yes I could have.



A few weeks ago my dear friend Lisha invited me to a dinner party.

I hate dinner parties.

I especially hate those where I don’t know the majority of people at the table. I hate them with a passion. I’d rather sit at home alone with a bowl of Frosted Flakes watching movies than attend 99.9% of the dinner parties I’ve been invited to.

I don’t care if they are serving my three favorite foods in the world, steak, lobster or bacon.

I’d do anything for bacon, but as Meat Loaf says “I won’t do that.”

At most dinner parties it’s always the same kind of people. Boring. Boring people.

I just cannot abide people sitting around a table getting drunk and talking smack about things I just could give two cents about. I always end up in a debate with someone over something and the person who invited me in the first place always ends up apologizing for me pimp slapping someone verbally.

Case in point: the last dinner party I attended was around four years ago. If that seems like a long time it is, now consider this, I’m invited to a dinner party at least at the very least 5-10 times a month. That’s a lot of dinner parties, is to not?

The previous dinner party I went to I got into it with a woman on, of all things, being black. She thought I didn’t know how to be black.

She was a white wasp in her mid-fifties and she just could not understand why I was not supporting Obama. This was during the Democratic primary season and at the time I was a Hillary supporter. This woman could not imagine a black person who was not prepared to vote for Obama. I tried to explain to her that I supported Hillary because I thought she was a better candidate and I just wasn’t prepared to vote for Obama just because he was black.

She didn’t get it. She refused to get it. After a good 20 minutes of her telling me how ignorant I was I had had enough so I went… here… “Voting for Obama just because he’s black would be like marrying a women just because she’s a Ugly Bitch. It makes no sense to me, but clearly it made sense to your husband.”

Like I said. I went there.

She went away.

That sort of things always happens to me at dinner parties, so I simply do not go.

This occasion, I did go. I went because lovely Lisha invited me. Truth be told, I trust Lisha like I trust few people. I figured if the people there were Lisha’s friends I was in good hands…and there might be bacon!

The party started at 7:30 pm and I didn’t get to the house until 8:30. I had a few challenges finding the home and more than once I considered just going home. Home to my Frosted Flakes, movies… and bacon.

Right when I decided to go home I found the residence (guided by Lisha’s phone call) so I walked in to the Lion’s Den trusting that Lisha had not put me in the middle of a Herman Cain rally.

Guess what?

Everyone in the party was ultra cool. Well except for this one black guy who kept eyeing me… (It’s a Black Man thing; you wouldn’t understand) but discounting him these were all great people.

At the party I noticed a young lady who was breathtakingly beautiful. I mean she was stunning. She also had a great smile and there was an empty seat next to her so

I ended up sitting next to her… what???

Her name was Paige, she was beautiful, smart and she was also something that almost knocked me off my feet…

She was 14.

I was amazed that she was 14, not because she was attractive but because she was so well spoken and she was smart. I’m talking real smart.  Paige was sitting next to a woman whom at first I thought was her sister but turned out to be her mom. I knew it was her mom not because I was told but because she was giving me the “I’ve killed before and I’ll kill again” look only a mom can give when defending their children.

Paige, her mom and I hit it off pretty well mostly because they both have a sense of humor and, as most people know, I’m a funny guy.

Now here’s the kicker… Paige is not just pretty, smart and mature. She’s… wait for it… wait for it… an artist.

She’s a fantastic artist. She showed me some of her work and again, the level of sophistication to what she was showing me was wonderfully beyond her years.

Paige and I spent most of the party talking about art. She loves to draw and is going to a prestigious high school for the arts.

Paige wants to be an interior designer.

That’s a problem.

Don’t misunderstand me, Paige would be an incredible interior designer, in fact she already is. Her mom told me Paige designed their home and it looks fabulous.

The problem is I want Paige in the comic and related industries and I’m trying to figure out a way to get her interested in such. Not too long ago I wrote an article about what it takes to make it in this industry. Paige at 14 has everything I was talking about.

Did you hear me, industry? She’s 14 and more professional than some artists I’ve met who are twice her age. We need people like Paige in the industry; we want people like Paige in the industry.

Over the weekend I attended Wonder Con and caught up with my dear friend Barbara Randall Kesel. She was sitting with a few other women artists signing this incredible book from IDW called Womanthology / Heroic.

It’s a hard cover anthology featuring women artist. I brought two, one for myself and one for my girl Tatiana. The book is simply wonderful. I need to buy another one because even though the artist signed my book to me, I’m giving my copy to Paige.

If anything can cause her to take a look at comics as a career it’s this book!

Paige is going to be my guest at Comic Con. I’ll take the time to introduce her to the playa’s in the industry and hopefully she will take an interest. Who knows maybe she will decide to be a comic book creator and an interior designer? I’m sure she could do both-she’s that talented.

No idea if Paige will see this as I’m sending it to her mom first to make sure it’s OK. If you are seeing this, Paige, I hope you consider becoming a creator in an industry that is great and can use new blood like you.

If not-I want my book back and I’m spreading a rumor on Facebook that you have been in and out of jail since you were three.

Your move young lady, your move.



The Point Radio: Something Funny About PROJECT X

It’s another one of those “found footage” films. but not frightening in any way. Why? Because HANGOVER Director Todd Phillips produces PROJECT X, based on the ultimate party, or it tries to be and Todd and the film’s stars explain it all. Plus the two people charged with grounding both worlds in reality on NCC’s new AWAKE tell us their plans as B.D. Wong and Cherry Jones weigh in on the series. All that plus WOW fires a lot of people and DOCTOR WHO may have a new “Master”.

The Point Radio is on the air right now – 24 hours a day of pop culture fun for FREE. GO HERE and LISTEN FREE on any computer or mobile device– and please check us out on Facebook right here & toss us a “like” or follow us on Twitter @ThePointRadio.


I don’t get it.

The San Diego Comic Con is a yearly event.

Every year for almost 20 years (since I was 5, Jean) like clockwork I give a party at Comic Con.

Every year like clockwork I host a dinner at Comic Con.

Every year like clockwork I host The Black Panel at Comic Con.

Every year like clockwork I hear from people I have not heard from since last year looking for an invite to my party.

Every year like clockwork I hear from people I have not heard from since last year looking for an invite to my dinner.

Every year like clockwork I hear from people I have not heard from since last year looking for me to put them on The Black Panel.

Every year like clockwork I hear from people I have not heard from since last year looking for me to get them a hotel room or a pass to Comic Con.

Comic Con is in July. It’s only February. The requests don’t usually start until a couple of weeks before Comic Con so I’m a few months ahead of the game.

Well, this year I’m nipping all that bullshit in the bud.


The answer is no.


No. No. No.


Hell, no.

No, if I don’t know you, you cannot come to my party or my dinner and you certainty cannot not be on the Black Panel.

Regarding the party and dinner, I don’t care who told you they could get you in. You can’t.

They lied.

Let me explain something to those who are among the many who ask of me the above. Like I said in last week’s article, the Comic book industry is a business. It’s part of the entertainment business. Comic Con is not a place where those who are serious about business come just to hang out.

Comic Con is where deals get done, relationships are cemented, partnerships are explored, opportunities are exploited and money is made.

When you operate at a certain level Comic Con is not a place where you hang out with friends and look for that copy of Spider-Man you had as a kid.

No, Comic Con is a place where you come to solidify and grow your business.

So, no, you cannot come to my annual party, person I don’t know, because it’s business.

Do you think the club my party is at is free?

No, no it’s not. So why, person I don’t know, should I grant you admittance when you don’t even know what I do? What possible reason is there for me to do that?

Do you think the dinner I have is free?

No, it’s not. That dinner costs thousands of freakin’ dollars.

Do you think that the ash can book you drew makes you worthy to sit on The Black Panel?


Go to www.theblackpanel.com and check out the alumni. Once you do, ask yourself if you really think you belong in that group.

I’ll help you out with that one, no.

Like I said last week, comics are a business. Yes, I have fun at Comic Con. That fun is usually at around midnight while sitting at the bar at the top of the Hyatt with 30 or so other hard working comic professionals getting blazed on shots of tequila.

But before I can have that fun I have to spend months setting up the party, the dinner and the panel and that is not fun.

That’s business.

So the answer is no.

However, if Mark Turner (Yes you, Mark) is at Comic Con this year he is invited to anything I’m doing because he gets it.

WEDNESDAY: Mike Gold Stays Put

REVIEW: The Sincerest Form Of Parody

REVIEW: The Sincerest Form Of Parody

In the commercial arts there’s always been a fine line between tribute and theft, even when it’s called homage. These days, that’s a word that gets lawyers excited. But we are free to imitate the underlying concept or genre. When Harvey Kurtzman produced Mad #1, he didn’t invent humor, nor did he invent satire or parody. Anybody can try to be funny, and let’s be honest: comics publishers, then and now, aren’t trying to imitate somebody else’s comic book – they’re trying to imitate somebody else’s comic book success.

This rarely happens.

After EC knocked one out of the park with Mad, just about every publisher with an eye to staying in business (except DC and Quality; Fawcett had pretty much given up on comics by this time) came out with their own Mad clone… including EC. And EC was hip enough to satirize both of these facts. While some of the art in these would-be doppelganger publications is borderline superlative, they lacked the sharpness, the outrage and, simply, the sheer funny of Kurtzman’s Mad.

But there is certainly enough decent material to fill a tribute trade paperback, and that’s just what Fantagraphics did in their book [[[The Sincerest Form of Parody]]]. Edited by John Benson (of Witzend and Squa Tront fame). Over 150 pages of reprints, a brilliant back-of-the-book by Benson running 26 pages, and an introduction by my old buddy, cartoonist/historian Jay Lynch (by old, I mean we first met in 1968), this book is a welcome addition to any comics library.

Not that I minimize Benson’s task. I had a friend who got an entry-level editorial position at Playboy magazine back when the earth was still cooling, and his first assignment was to “edit” the party jokes page. That meant he had to open about a zillion envelopes a week, read all the so-called gags, and pick the “best” couple dozen for publication. If you’ve ever read Playboy’s Party Jokes, you can only imagine what all those other “jokes” were like. It’s a wonder he didn’t climb the tower and start shooting anybody wearing skinny ties and horn-rim glasses.

I imagine Benson was faced with a similar challenge. If not for the artistic endeavors of Norman Maurer, Jack Kirby, Joe Maneely, Bill Everett, Ross Andru and Mike Esposito, and Howard Norstrand, John might have climbed that tower himself. Lou Cameron and Bob Powell are missing from this column; both are missed.

As Benson points out, few of the Mad imitators survived more than four issues. Then again, four issues was a pretty standard run for comics in the crowded newsstands of the pre-Code 1950s: it took at least three months after off-sale to get decent circulation numbers, so after the loser first issue got its report card the publisher was faced with the prospect of pulling the third issue at the printer or maybe printing off the paid-for inventory in issue four… give or take. That’s why so many interesting early 50s titles such as Danger Trail and Tor were cancelled in their first year of bi-monthly publication.

So, if nothing else, The Sincerest Form of Parody saves you a lot of time separating the wheat from the chaff. But in and of itself, it is a very worthy book – entertaining on his own, and critical from a historical point of view. You should check this one out; order it from your comics retailer or from an online service. It’s scheduled for publication in March, and it’s already off-press.

The Sincerest Form of Parody, Fantagraphics Books, $24.99 in trade paperback.