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Who wins?

Who wins?

In last Monday’s New York Times, ComicMix contributor Dave Marsh sounds off on the democracy craze. Not the one in the Middle East, but the one sweeping the media, on shows like AMERICAN IDOL and DANCING WITH THE STARS. "What it really represents is an ever more cleverly manipulated pop culture," said Dave Marsh, a longtime rock critic and host of a Sirius satellite radio show. "Empowerment becomes a commodity."

In criticizing the contests, Mr. Marsh said the mass market spots talent well enough: "The mob chose Elvis Presley, the mob chose James Brown, the mob chose the Beatles." With executives filtering the process, he said, the result is "disposable" performers "who are selected because they stay away from anything that’s personal or controversial." Instead, we get the music Paula Abdul thinks we want.

DC at NYCC

DC at NYCC

To nobody’s surprise, DC will be out in force at the upcoming New York Comic Con. Under the direction of DC President & Publisher Paul Levitz, nearly every member of the New York DC Universe and Vertigo editorial groups will be at the show, along with personnel from WildStorm, Editorial Administration, Creative Services, Sales & Marketing and other departments. DC also will sponsor several panels at the convention. A partial list of DC freelancers (writers and pencillers) attending the convention follows after the fold, as does their panel schedule.

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Avril Lavigne Comic Tie-In – Press Release from Del Rey Manga

Avril Lavigne Comic Tie-In – Press Release from Del Rey Manga

Del Rey Manga, an imprint of Random House Inc. and one of the leading publishers of manga in the U.S., announced today the acquisition of MAKE 5 WISHES, created in collaboration with platinum-selling and Grammy Award-nominated recording artist Avril Lavigne.

Del Rey Manga will publish the first volume of MAKE 5 WISHES on April 10, 2007. Avril Lavigne’s new album The Best Damn Thing will release shortly after on April 17, 2007 from RCA Records. In volume one of MAKE 5 WISHES, introverted teenager Hana stumbles upon a website that will change her life forever. After a demon grants her a series of wishes that go bad, Hana meets her hero Avril Lavigne, who helps her find the courage to conquer her own personal demons once and for all. The concluding volume will be released in July 2007. Both volumes will appear in full-color.

More than simply lending her talents to the creative process, multiple award-winning singer, songwriter, model, and actress Avril Lavigne also appears as a character in the manga. When asked what inspired her to be a part of this project, Avril Lavigne said, "I know that many of my fans read manga, and I’m really excited to be involved in creating stories that I know they will enjoy."

Chick Tract Fetches Big Bucks

Chick Tract Fetches Big Bucks

The 1966 Jack Chick propaganda pamphlet "Somebody Goofed" has fetched $309 on eBay. The seller describes it thusly: "This is an early edition of this tract that begins with the pair witnessing the death of an old man who had a heart attack on the street. The newer editions show them observing a teenager (‘Bobby’) dying of a drug overdose while the usual Chick stereotype ‘lowlifes’ stand around watching while the ambulance takes him away." We’re not certain yet whether or not the "somebody" who "goofed" refers to the buyer.

Jack Chick is America’s leading publisher of religious tracts in comic art form. In some circles, they have been deemed controversial and even offensive; in others, they are quite respected.

Photos from Angouleme

Photos from Angouleme

Andi Watson has some nice photos to accompany his convention report from the Angouleme International Comics Festival.

An excerpt: "I spent most of my time holed up in Salon Editeurs with publishers great and small. There was a separate manga tent way over on the other side of town that I never made it to. It would make more sense in future if the organisers could find a way/site to herd the ‘Salons’ closer together. There were rumours of some of the bigger publishers not wanting to return next year, and those are the organisations who pay shed loads for their big booths and make the show a profit. Comics and grumbling are constant partners wherever you are in the world so I imagine they’ll all be back next year…if they’re closer to the good restaurants."