The Mix : What are people talking about today?

After Hours tries suicide?

After Hours tries suicide?


Our latest ComicMix Podcast discusses big things at the Sci-Fi channel, anger towards Marvel’s Captain America stunt, and we reveal the astonishing inside low-down on After Hours comics and their new "reality" comic about… suicide? Timeline swoops down on 1976 and Superman Vs. Spider-Man #1.

All this and Logan’s Run – with George Perez, no less – on ComicMix Podcast #14, available by clicking on this here button:

Star Trek gay episode finally unlost

Star Trek gay episode finally unlost

David Gerrold’s shelved gay-themed Star Trek episode, "Blood and Fire", is being filmed by the folks at Star Trek: New Voyages, a fan-supported continuation of the original series that has already had appearances by George Takei and scripts by D.C. Fontana.

New Voyages is gearing up to begin filming its fourth episode in June, and it will be an updated version of Gerrold’s "Blood and Fire", both in switching from TNG era to TOS era, and in themes that can be discussed in 2007 versus 1987. The gay characters in this version are Capt. Kirk’s nephew, Peter Kirk, and his boyfriend, Lt. Alex Freeman.

This is not the first time gay characters have appeared in the Trek franchise. Bart Faulwell has been a crew member of the da Vinci in Star Trek: Corps of Engineers since its inception.

Comics – because it’s there

Comics – because it’s there

Via Lisa at Sequentially Speaking, Joao Garcia climbed Mount Everest’s north side eight years ago, and has decided to tell his story via comics, publishing a limited, 2,000-print adaptation of his Everest story book A mais Alta Solidao (The highest solitude), illustrated by Ricardo Cabra.  Read his interview with ExplorersWeb here.

This appears to be something of a trend among Portuguese creative folk; a few days ago ExplorersWeb interviewed artist Antonio Coelho about his climbing experiences.  Both interviews are well worth scoping out for the copious numbers of illustrations therein.

Impaling Bush

Impaling Bush

You’d think with the release of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 comic book yesterday, we would have had some mention of it on the site. After all, we know that every time we say Buffy the Vampire Slayer we get a lot of extra traffic to the website, and we aren’t above shameless Google-boosting. (Buffy! Buffy! Buffy!) But we couldnt find a timely hook, other than all the traditional press coverage.

Until we came across this: "The American Secret Service have launched an investigation into one of the candidates for the presidency in 2008 – after he pledged that as President, one of his first acts would be to impale President George W. Bush. The candidate in question is Jonathon ‘The Impaler’ Sharkey, and he is running as the only self-described satanic vampire candidate who has so far entered the 2008 race. Sharkey’s pledge to impale President Bush, he makes clear, will only come into effect if he is actually elected to office."

My favorite line from the piece: "But a legal expert is unsure if a case could be made against The Impaler. ‘Under the First Amendment, what it boils down to here is whether or not he’s a vampire who wants to impale the president,’ law professor Neil Richards of Washington University in St. Louis told the Chronicle. ‘I guess the question is, if he’s a vampire, why is he the one staking people? Shouldn’t he want to bite the president and feed on him?’"

And yes, it gives us an excuse to run this Alex Ross painting. Alex Ross! The Google hits just keep on coming!

South Korea comics controversy

South Korea comics controversy

Last month, blogger Tim Leong reported about South Korean comic author Rhie Won-bok, who wrote in Meon Nara, Yiwoot Nara (Far Countries, Near Countries), his so-called educational comic book series about different countries, that "The Jews are the invisible force that controls the U.S."  At the time, Rhie stood by his words, adding, "I wrote the chapter to let people know that you can’t understand the U.S. without knowing the Jewish community."

Now that he’s actually met some members of that community, he’s singing a different tune.

AP reports that Rabbi Abraham Cooper from the Simon Wiesenthal Center met with Rhie at Gimm-Young Publishers’ offices in Seoul, confronting him with copies of the early 20th century Nazi magazine Der Stuermer to show its similarity to caricatures in Meon Nara. Also present was Richard Choi Bertsch, a member of the National Korean-American Coalition, who condemned the book’s content, as well as raising questions about drawings of African-Americans (something Cheryl Lynn has noted on her blog and at the Black Panel at NYCC), prompting the publisher to pledge an extensive review of the entire series.

"I’m sorry to see things like a frog in a well," Rhie has now admitted, referring to a traditional Korean saying that a frog in a well is unaware of the larger world outside. "In the future, I will write books in a more responsible way."  In addition, Gimm-Young has agreed to translate into Korean a book by the Wiesenthal Center that aims to reveal anti-Semitic mistruths, as well as sending officials to the U.S. to meet with Korean-American and Jewish communities. 

So they can, you know, actually get to know them before writing about them.

Doonesbury animations hit the Web

Doonesbury animations hit the Web

Remember when Doonesbury’s Duke ran for president back in 2000? For some of us, that no longer seems like such a weird choice.

Evidently, Garry Trudeau and the folks at Universal Press Syndicate feel the same way, as they have started to make available free of charge their short animations from the "Duke 2000 — Whatever it Takes" campaign. According to Editor & Publisher magazine, six videos will be uploaded twice a month through 2008 to and

In the March 4 Doonesbury, Duke (based upon the late author Hunter S. Thompson) disclosed his campaign videos would appear on the Web. "This is incredible — one click to immortality! What a great tool!," he said. Duke’s son replied "Dad, you can’t put that up! Are you crazy? How many people have seen this?" Duke stated "Only a couple million — I just posted it."

Marvel to release Amazing Fantasy Omnibus

Marvel to release Amazing Fantasy Omnibus

Marvel Comics will be reprinting one of their most unusual horror/mystery titles in a hardcover Omnibus edition this summer. The first six issues were known as Amazing Adventures and featured work by Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Don Heck, and Paul Reinman. The next eight issues were called Amazing Adult Fantasy and focused on Lee and Ditko’s work. The final issue – also focusing on Lee and Ditko – was simply titled Amazing Fantasy and is best known as the birthplace of a character called Spider-Man.

Therefore, it is no surprise that that this 416 page tome will be known as the Amazing Fantasy Omnibus.

This hefty volume is scheduled for release in late August. No retail price has been announced as of this writing.

John Ostrander: Writing 101

John Ostrander: Writing 101

What does a writer do?

I did an interview recently and I was asked what advice I could give to someone who also wanted to be a writer. I get asked that at classes, lectures or seminars and I always answer by asking that question.

It’s not a trick question, although some people seem to think it is. Generally, I get answers like:

a) writers create stories

b) writers make up characters

c) writers make up things

It’s actually a lot simpler, more basic, and far tougher than all of the above.

What does a writer do? A writer writes. We don’t simply think about writing or talk about writing or imagine ourselves writing, although every writer I know does that and, in many cases, prefers to do that. It’s a hell of a lot easier than actually doing the work. However, if that’s all you do, then you’re not a writer. You’re a wannabee.

A writer writes. Every day. If you’re just starting, find a time and place that you can do it even if it’s only for five minutes. It’s like when you’re starting to exercise; you’re not – or shouldn’t – go from 0 exercise to trying to running the Boston Marathon. You need first to get into shape; with writing you need to get into the habit of writing. At first you’re looking for consistency – five to seven days a week.

I don’t care where or how you do it – in a diary, a journal, with pen and paper, on a computer or what. Text messaging is not the same thing, and you know it. It’s preferable to write in something so you can see what you’ve done, where you can refer back to earlier entries. Date the entries.


Jake Gyllenhaal to play Captain Marvel?

First we hear Maggie Gyllenhaal is being courted to replace Katie Holmes in The Dark Night. Now the New York Daily News gossip columnists are reporting that her brother Jake Gyllenhaal is in line to play Captain Marvel in New Line Cinema’s proposed Shazam! movie, based on the DC Comics series.

The paper’s Rush & Molloy column, citing anonymous sources, reported that the movie is New Line’s bid for a franchise on the order of Batman and Superman. "They’re ready to spend up to $200 million to get it started," one source told the columnists.

The columnists also reported that director Peter Segal and his fellow producers want to nab Gyllenhaal before Spider-Man director Sam Raimi does, as Tobey Maguire has said he may let someone else play the webslinger in subsequent installments.

What, Fred MacMurray isn’t available to play the Big Red Cheese?

News Flash: Unicorns not real!

News Flash: Unicorns not real!

It was all a misunderstanding, admitted the Billings, MT chief prosecutor.

Seems a  deputy prosecutor misinterpreted an e-mail from a colleague who used the phrase "unicorn defense" as an actual statement from Phillip C. Holliday Jr., whose truck crashed into a light pole last week.  Seems "unicorn defense" is a slang term used by prosecutors when a defendant blames some mythical person for a crime, much like "SEDI" (Someone Else Did It).

Apparently Holliday blamed a nonexistent woman for driving his truck into the pole.  I think he should have blamed the elfin thief.