Another piece up on Tor.com, about the recently-concluded X-Factor comic book from Marvel, which has consistently been one of my favorite titles (despite its low-selling b-list cult status) for the last 7 years or so.
I recently published another comic book story, this one with Boston Comics Roundtable / Ninth Art Press and featuring artwork by my friend Jim Gallagher. Our story is part of an anthology series about Boston-centric superheroes, and what’s even cooler is that our superhero “Louie the Lone Dervish” (inspired by Louie With The Tricycle, a popular homeless guy around these parts) is featured right there on the cover on the anthology as well. Not bad for a story about a crazy superhobo on a refurbished three-wheeler!
The comic was originally set to have its debut at Boston Comic-Con back in April, but, well, that kind of got postponed because, you know, all kinds of craziness. So it’s now available online following the re-scheduled Boston Comic-Con from last weekend. You can pick up a copy of “In A Single Bound” #2 over at the Ninth Art Press website, a scant $6 for 36 glorious black-and-white pages done entirely by Boston-based writers & artists.
UPDATE: this blog post managed to make the rounds today, thanks to the magical powers of the Internet, and I was interviewed by Boston Magazine about it. You know, ’cause I’m awesome n’shizz. Check out the interview over on their website!
Marvel recently wrapped their latest installment of the annual BigMegaUltra Superhero Summer Event, Fear Itself, written by Matt Fraction with art by Stuart Immonen. First of all, I want to congratulate those two talented creators with putting out the first big event book that shipped completely on time, a masterful feat in and of itself (if past event comics are to be any barometer). I realize that writing an event comic is a serious challenge for creators — the nature of such a series requires the writer to blow over the smaller individual character moments (usually reserved for the tie-in books) in favor of dictating the major action of the storyline. The supplementary titles are merely ribs; the main title is the spine of the story, and as such, is expected to present the major story beats with gusto, while still remaining completely self-contained. It is in this regard that, in my opinion — and I’m not just saying this with blind fanboy rage, but an objective mind — Fear Itself failed to make the mark. Continue reading There’s Nothing To Fear — But Fear Itself
I have a strange relationship with cosplay. I typically find cosplayers to be somewhat annoying, and I don’t understand the whole idea behind spending absurd amounts of money on making elaborate geek niche costumes to wear at conventions. That being said, I’m endlessly fascinated at the hordes of people who do feel that urge (and of course, I am entertained by some of the more ridiculous and hilarious costumes that are out there. You know, like BANANA WOLVERINE.
This week’s Five By Five Hundred was inspired by a few specific instances at New York Comic-Con this past weekend. First, that I felt weird about inadvertently objectifying women while I was there — some girl walks by dressed as Mystique, covered in blue bodypaint and wearing a tiny bikini top, I’m naturally inclined to look. But then I don’t want to be a creep, like I’m just staring at breasts — although certainly my attention is drawn to them because of the nature and design of the costume because females in comic book/anime/pop culture are often scantily-clad and sexualized, and it’s this whole crazy internal moral debate I have in my head over the course of 4 seconds (during which I am too busy mentally deliberating to realize that I’m still staring).
But I also saw some cosplayers who would get annoyed when people asked them to pose for a picture, or do any kind of interaction. This was also difficult for me to wrap my head around. Why would you dress up like Power Girl if it wasn’t for some kind of desire for attention? And then I realized, that’s the same argument used by men who sexually harass women on the street: “she’s asking for it.” But this particular question was not based in sexuality; hell, there’d be men dressed as Doctor Who that would be equally annoyed at posing for a picture (side note: Doctor Who cosplay appears to be the new Slave Leia at conventions).
Is it about the sex, or is it about the costume? Are these cosplayers objectified — or fictionalized? Well, that’s where this week’s post comes in. No solid answers, but I thought I’d provide some food for thought.