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    The Rundown: The Failures of the Comics News Industry, New “Black Knight” Book, and more

    By | August 3rd, 2015
    Posted in News | 4 Comments

    Welcome back to The Rundown, our daily breakdown on comic news stories we missed from the previous day. Have a link to share? Email our team at rundown@multiversitycomics.com.

    – Paste Magazine straight up threw the down the gauntlets last week, criticizing the failure of the comics news industry to report on mega-selling titles like “Attack on Titan”, on brushing aside award-winning and bestselling graphic novel work (seriously, comics are winning MacArthur Genius Grants right now; nice work Ms. Bechdel), and doing whatever they can to pretend that Marvel and DC are the only dogs in town, including by reporting on questionable and inflated sales numbers. This also follows a fantastic essay by Chris Butcher about how the comics industry, as a whole, has basically gone out of its way to other and discredit essentially anything that hasn’t come from one of the mainstream superhero companies. (Actually, more shocking are how some other and discredit superhero characters, like Ms. Marvel, if they don’t fit a preconceived idea of what a comics character should be.) Shea Hennum elaborates on how books like Raina Telgemeier’s “Smile” and “Drama” can’t seem to stay on the shelves, while webcomics like “Homestuck” can get 600,000 views a day, but they don’t get nearly the amount of attention something like Black Knight (as below) will receive. The whole piece is a fascinating read, that I think ultimately challenges us to start broadening our comics reading spectrum.

    – But for superhero fans, this November, Marvel launches “Black Knight” #1, written by Frank Tieri with art by Luca Pizzari. The All-New, All-Different (But Not Really) ongoing follows Dane Whitman, lost in Weirdworld and armed with the Ebony Blade and promises you’ll see “the Marvel Universe from a whole new angle.” Tieri talks about it with Newsarama.

    – In Marvel movie news: it was a close shave, but it looks like Channing Tatum will still be playing Gambit.

    – Speaking of Marvel, on Friday, Dan Slott took to Twitter to defend his boss on straight-washing Hercules in whatever new series they’re bringing him into. After basically throwing a fit that reminds me of Michael Keaton’s in Birdman he says that the only way for more people to get representation isn’t by demanding it, but by buying the books of the people who might put more diverse characters in (at least that’s how I’m interpreting it?). Andrew Wheeler, of ComicsAlliance, took umbrage with that, and they got into a Twitter flame war. While melodramatic, both sides of raise interesting points about representation in mainstream superhero comics and the nature of the mainstream superhero business. Slott did apologize for his tone and poor word choice.

    – Check out this preview for Craig Thompson’s newest book, “Space Dumplins”, coming this August from Graphix. It’s Thompson’s first all-ages title.

    – R. Orion Martin at The Comics Journal rounds up a couple Chinese webcomics. Since China has some cray-strict publishing rules, many cartoonists resort to social media to get their stuff available. Martin also provides a bit of context about the strips.

    – Recently, we at Multiversity Comics launched our MANGA CLUB! We kicked off the discussion this week with a conversation about “Jaco the Galactic Patrolman” (which you’re always welcome to participate in!). On Friday, we asked for our weekly reader poll, if your comics reading includes manga. Of all the participants, 22 of you (for 21% of the results) said that you have no interest in reading manga. And I’m choosing to interpret that as meaning your taste might lean more toward exploring European comics or webcomics or alternative/indie comics, instead of some desire to read exclusively superhero books. 19 of you,18% of the voters, said you’re currently keeping up with a few series, but mostly in the paperbacks. 17% of you admit to finishing a few manga series, but on the whole, Japanese comics are in the minority of what you read. (I admit I’m in this wheelhouse.) And 14% of you are interested in starting to explore the world of manga. If anyone has any books to recommend, make sure you note them in the comments below, yo! Also, editor emeritus, Matthew Meylikhov, created this handy of list of ten manga booksattackon that you might enjoy. Make sure you check back for our next Weekly Readers’ Poll!

    Continued below

    – Finally, in Webcomics Worth Clicking: “Rutabaga: Adventure Chef” is a fast-paced and clever twist on the adventure story genre. Following Rutabaga as he gets into all sorts of antics in search of the greatest ingredients. Eric Colossal’s series features some dynamic artwork and great gags and is something you could easily share with younger peeps, if you wanted.


    Matthew Garcia

    Matt hails from Colorado. He can be found on Twitter as @MattSG or over on his Tumblr. He is also responsible for the comic Oakley Rushie Down to the Bay.

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