Man, i have been anxious all day, and then I was driving on Lincoln Blvd., decided to go to a bookstore since those settle me down a little, peaceful-ish places, went with one off Lincoln. Except I forgot that… every other time I get on Lincoln, I invariably think about the time in my mid-to-late 20’s I was at a restaurant with friends, and when I left, I couldn’t find the keys to my car. And it was this whole ordeal, and I was having to call friends like “Can I crash at your place while I get a locksmith" and … I got to a pretty dark place emotionally as things wore on, like "Why do I live in this city— nothing has gone my way since I moved here— maybe I’ve made a series of terrible life choices— no one will ever love me" dark. Memorably dark.
And then at the end of it, I realized my keys were in my back pocket. I usually keep them in my front pocket but I’d put them in my back pocket instead…? I just didn’t remember putting them into my back pocket because I usually put them in my front pocket. But they were in my back pocket.
And then I never told anyone what happened, the people I’d called— I pretended that the restaurant found them eventually. And I’ve never come clean about that. But obviously, at the cost of … however many years later, anytime I get onto goddamn Lincoln blvd. (which is completely out of my way, not really my neighborhood at all, but still, a fairly good-sized thoroughfare), I still have that twinge of “They were in your back pocket.” So I figured I’d admit it on here, and see if that helps me out any. ”Tumblr: I just saw an animated gif of President Kennedy’s head getting blow off, and also, where I admit to minor embarrassments I should’ve forgotten many many years ago especially because they were replaced by all sorts of shiny, new embarrassments— embarrassments are sort of what I do.” It’s a little long as mottos go but… I don’t know. Maybe I need a motto. Maybe that’s what’s been missing. Just anxious all day long…
Throw-back Thursday: the keys, they were in my back pocket.
Eisner Picks? I haven’t read a lot of these books— I wouldn’t read a lot of these books— but let’s just make picks anyways, for fun times and giggles. Do I even read comics anymore? I don’t know. Here are my Eisner picks anyways.
Best Short Story: Mars to Stay. Best Single Issue: Love & Rockets.
Best Continuing Series: Sex Criminals. (I like Saga on a pure “entertainment” level but that guy doesn’t need awards, too; Sex Criminals, while I’m usually a jerk about, as a comedy nerd— it’s not really my sense of humor— it’s nice that it’s connected with people and when the book does hit its marks, it’s a pretty interesting comic. Way, way, way higher degree of difficulty, too. More interesting art, also).
Best Limited Series: 47 Ronin. Best New Series: High Crimes.
Early Readers: Big Wet Balloon. Kids: Hilda. Teens: March.
Humor: You’re All Just Jealous of My Jetpack. (Weak category).
Anthology: Nobrow. Digital: As the Crow Flies. (Odd set of picks).
Reality-Based: Hip Hop Family Tree. Worst Named Category: “Reality-Based.”
Graphic Album (New): The Property. Adaptation: Don Quixote. Reprint: Julio’s Day. Archival: Percy Crosby. Archival: Best of EC.
US Edition of Foreign Material: Incidents in the Night. (Tough category). US Edition Foreign- Asia (this is a category??): Mysterious Underground Men. (But Sunny over everything).
Best Writer: Kelly Sue. (On that list? I’d rather read Pretty Deadly than any of those other books, warts and all. Seems like an easy pick. Though, I do like Saga— I know a lot of people think that’s just a TV show comic, with the cutesy dialogue and all; cause it kinda totally is exactly that, but heck, I like it anyways. On the other hand, that Captain Marvel book seems to have found people, in a way he hasn’t (though he does have that digital thing), so… yeah… Plus, if anyone does not need an Eisner award in their garage, it’s probably Vaughan).
Writer/Artist: Jaime Hernandez. Penciller/Inker: Nate Powell. Painter: Andrew Robinson. Cover artist: uhhhh, Chris Samnee. (Not a lot of covers that did much for me last year, I guess, if those are the nominees). Colors: Hollingsworth, forever. Letters: Ed Piskor.
Comics-Related Periodical: … I hope that tcj.com soundly defeats the Comics Journal…? (Those count separately???) I guess I’m biased on that one; congratulations to all those people— good list, I guess. Comics-Related Book: Genius Illustrated. Scholarly Work: Superhero Reader. Publication Design: Genius Illustrated.
“Lovers at the Chameleon Club, Paris 1932 began with a Brassai photograph I saw at a museum show in Washington. I was familiar with the photo, “Lesbian Couple at Le Monocle, 1932”: a portrait of two women sitting at a table in a bar, one in a sparkly evening gown, the other in drag, with short hair and a tuxedo. But the wall text said something I hadn’t known, which was that the woman in the tuxedo, a professional athlete named Violette Morris, had worked for the Gestapo during the German occupation of Paris and later been assassinated by the French Resistance.
A little research turned up an even more interesting story. Morris was an Olympic hopeful and a professional auto racer. When her license to compete as an athlete was revoked by the French government, as punishment for being a public cross-dresser, Hitler somehow got wind of it, and invited Morris to be his special guest at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. By the time she got back to France, she was not only spying for the Germans, but she was the person who told them where the Maginot Line ended: where they could breach the French defenses. During the Occupation, she did indeed work for the Nazis, and was killed by the Resistance in 1944.”—Francine Prose. (The Photo)
The title of your Winter Soldier post summed up my thoughts exactly. Holy fuck but it literally looks like a cable drama (Joss Whedon needs to be strung up for allowing that lighting to become a thing). You're wrong about Iron Man 3, though; it's totally a Shane Black movie, just not enough of/a particularly good one. Still the most watchable of the new batch.
The thing I like about Shane Black movies (and some other 80’s action movies to a lesser extent; but at least Die Hard, which is perfect)— and I think what modern blockbusters have strayed from to their detriment— is the heroes are Messed Up. They’re not okay; society doesn’t really have a place for them— Geena Davis in Long Kiss Goodnight can’t be a homemaker because she’s a killer, Mel Gibson in Lethal Weapon can’t be a family man like Danny Glover because he’s lethal and also a weapon, Downey Jr. in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang has one of my favorite things where he says something like, “I’m not saying it’s normal— I’m not saying I’m normal”; etc. Modern special effects blockbusters don’t have those kinds of characters— it’s all Chosen Ones and prophecies and all that crap, instead of Bill Murray in Meatballs. I don’t know why— this country got more evangelical? People got less accepting of actual outcasts (the nerds never won)? No clue.
I identify with fuck-ups lots, for obvious reasons, so that is the kinda stuff I’m into. And so, Iron Man 3— if it had any of that to it, I missed it. The fact it was set at Christmas didn’t mean much when fundamentally, I felt like the stuff I think of as being his real hallmarks wasn’t there, the stuff I get into. Downey Jr. had a “nervous condition”, they tried to jam in a neuroses, but it never felt all that real and I don’t remember it getting resolved in any meaningful way…
And the ending, I just remember it all being special effects and Gwyneth Paltrow’s weird stomach. The idea of the main character having to defeat the bad guys in order to be in some way healed wasn’t there (which I think is how his other movies have ended, the healing power of violence— Bruce Willis being gloomy all movie and then finally being happy enough to dance a jig because he threw a guy onto helicopter blades). Take away the main character healing and/or coming to grips with his world (e.g. Mel Gibson having to beat up Gary Busey outside the family home) and it’s just… What’s there to root for without that stuff? I don’t know. Not much. So for me it always felt authored and muddled by executives, and consultants, and whatever, more than anything, like with all those movies. For me, it’s not a “real Shane Black” thing in the ways that count. It’s just the movie I’m hoping helps him get to make real Shane Black things again because … The Nice Guys is a pretty fun script that’s just lying on a shelf somewhere, so…
““I think if Dickens was alive today, he’d have been working for the BBC, until HBO offered him much more money.””
— Roddy Doyle discusses television and his short story in this week’s issue of the magazine: http://nyr.kr/1mUhHxZ
I always thought that if Charles Dickens were alive today, he’d work for a hula hoop manufacturer, but in human resources— he’d handle the sexual harassment complaints for the other hula hoop employees. But that would only be during the day. At night, he would dance for money, at an exclusive warehouse populated with a small, select group of sinister men wearing Halloween masks of recently deceased celebrities. Weekends, he would spend with Will Shakespeare, who if Charles Dickens were alive today, would probably also be alive today.
“I’m still deeply grateful to everyone who helped me (seriously, thanks forever backers!). But I lived in a state of almost constant anxiety for 4-5 months, which eventually started causing small panic attacks. Even with friends all around me, it was one of the loneliest times I can remember. It’s hard to be creative when you’re that scared…a lot of the fear was manufactured, but it began negatively impacting development. Things that should have been simplified, re-done or thrown out were kept because I felt I couldn’t afford the time or effort to make the change. Which is exactly what the game actually needed - some time for me to step back and re-assess, experiment, simplify and polish.”—From a computer game post-mortem about a Kickstarter that got funded, but then the game came out and people didn’t like it / it didn’t sell. I’m pretty fried mentally but something about this I want to remember— something about that idea of simplicity. I don’t know. I don’t know what it is. Just reading about games (?) and that caught my eye. I’m betweenish projects right now— once the next cartoon wraps up, and so the anxiety of that’s going to start up pretty soon— I don’t like being between projects. My job always comes first and all, but I don’t do well without having something else. Idle hands and all. I don’t know. I don’t know why this caught my eye— something something simplicity. How rough that Kickstarter is, though..
When did all the bacon become “applewood bacon?” What’s that about? The Applewood family must be rolling in the dough— they must be a cruel and Ming-like dynasty. House Applewood. The bacon must flow… I don’t know. We’re all so fucking impressed with ourselves.
Hey, Brian. I'm an aspiring writer, and I have this complex about being a person of color trying to break into comics. I know I'm probably making a bigger deal out of this than I should, but it's kind of disheartening to see gatherings of creators and to notice the lack of color. Am I worrying for nothing? I tend to over analyze things, so this has been bugging me more than it probably should. I apologize in advance if this question is stupid, annoying, or has been asked before.
I am not a person of color but I am the father of a multiracial household and I’m Hypery aware of the world we live in in this regard. but I truly believe that there is nothing standing in your way of making your dreams as a creative person come true. It’s between you and your talent.
truthfully most of us don’t even know what each other looks like. all anybody cares about is the quality of each other’s work.
do not put things in front of you to stop yourself from making your dreams come true. do not. people do this all the time and I truly believe it’s the difference between those who succeed and those who fail.
stop rejecting yourself before the rejection comes. and if rejection comes, and it will, don’t make it about anything but your work.
“At any rate, Giorgi and Siccardi were very enthusiastic about this, writing, “Fetal masturbation? Female fetuses having orgasms? A resounding yes to both of these questions.””—Description of a letter “written by two OB/GYNs in Italy in 1996 and published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology,” from an article back in June analyzing a GOP Congressman’s claim that abortion should be illegal because he believes he’s observed fetuses masturbating in sonogram images. The article analyzes the scientific literature (which concludes with the doctors saying of a female fetus, “We observed this behavior for about 20 minutes”).