The webcomics blog about webcomics

Extra Update: Jess Fink Speaks!

First, go read this. Then come back and enjoy the candor of Jess Fink regarding art, jerks, and her fists.

Fleen: Art is all about appropriation and reworking, but this is at least the — third? fourth? — fairly obvious direct copy of your work by different parties. What is it about your work that makes you such a high-profile target for these situations?

Fink: There is a great deal of difference in being inspired by a work and completely copying it. I’ve been inspired by a ton of artists and it’s reflected in my work I’m sure, but that is the outcome of living within the art community and growing up with it. After cookie loves milk got printed there was a swarm of food based shirts, peanut butter and jelly, ketchup and mustard and if they were inspired by my design it wouldn’t bother me.

I think the reason It’s been stolen so many times is that the art is fairly simple. I’m just playing around with the idea of cookies being good with milk, it’s something everyone understands. I’ve made other designs for Threadless that are much more illustrations rather than funny concepts and those never get ripped off (not that I’m daring anymore) because it’s a much more complex thing to copy. The thing with simple designs is that you can just take the idea and make art that is slightly different, that way they think no one will notice who they stole it from. Obviously I also can’t hold a copyright on the idea of cookies being good with milk, but I can take action against people who blatantly copy and even trace my designs.

Fleen: In a weird way, is it flattering that so many people want to copy your designs?

Fink: No! Haha. A lot of people ask this and it’s really not! Every time I get an email about some Cafe press store selling cookie loves milk rip-offs or a big name department store selling a trace or some shop in Hong Kong printing exact copies it just completely ruins my day. You don’t get paid an awful lot to make shirt designs so feeling like you are getting exploited is never fun. If it were just something similar someone made that they weren’t selling it would be a completely different story, but I know these places are making money off of something that is mine.

Fleen: This is a Threadless shirt design, and they hold the copyright to be defended. In a perfect world, what would they do now?

Fink: Well it might not be a perfect world but it might be a polite one at least! In the past when dealing with these situations Threadless has granted me the authority to take legal action myself.

Fleen: What would make it less likely for you to be targeted in this way?

Fink: I’m not really sure. Less jerks in the world? Science needs to find a way to see if a person is a jerk or not right when they are born! “It’s a girl! Oh…I’m sorry, it’s also a jerk.”

Honestly I think more people need to be aware of art theft and how often it happens and how wrong it is. There are people who just appropriate things without even thinking that it’s stealing. Someone once sent me a shirt with a panel from my comic, Chester 5000 on it. It was cut up in with a bunch of panels from other black and white comics. I would assume that the person who made the shirt just thought they were making a shirt covered in cut-outs from cartoons, not realizing that you can only use art from the public domain. I don’t think most people are actually taught what intellectual property means.

Fleen: What do you think drives people to engage in such blatant copying?

Fink: I think it’s just ignorance and in the case of Todd Goldman simply wanting to make a buck by any means possible. He churns out copy after copy of other people’s work, it’s the quantity over quality technique. He thinks, “If I make enough crap someone will buy at least one.” And at this point it’s really pretty disgusting since he knows he is blatantly ripping off hard working artists and he’s been involved in so many legal battles for it, it’s hard to imagine being such a nasty person.

Fleen: Todd Goldman has tossed lawsuit threats over copying accusations in the past. Do you feel that speaking truthfully about this — “situation” — puts you at any risk?

Fink: It’s always a little scary dealing with situations like these but I feel that I have enough evidence against Goldman that I can talk freely. His rip-offs of my work are far from coincidental since he actually offered me a job back in 2008, telling me he loved my Lil’ Soap and Cookie Loves Milk designs and then instead of giving me work apparently decided it was more profitable to just rip me off.

Fleen: How long before somebody starts passing off Chester or Time Traveling Jess as their work? How badly will you beat them?

Fink: SO HARD. I will beat them with all of my fists at once! And then Top Shelf will beat them too! Both books (Chester 5000 and We Can Fix It) are due out next year and honestly I’m excited but kind of scared to death!

Fleen thanks Ms Fink for her time and openness, and reiterates that Mr Goldman has been invited to respond via his representatives, but has not done so yet. Spread the word and do what you can, my minions.

I Really Thought Somebody Had Died

Screencapped that for you, Jess.

When I first checked social media this morning I was surprised when Twitter told me I had 456 unread tweets; usually an overnight is good for fewer than 200, given the number of people I follow and their sleep patterns. 250 would be a lot for one night, above that indicates something stupid happening in a Republican presidential debate that I didn’t stay up for or somebody influential kicking it.

This time, however, it was down to one person — and if you’re gonna do a serious tweetstorm, this is the one to do. [C] Spike [Trotman] has been on top of the Rat Queens brouhaha¹ and last night during her typical small hours worktime decided on a course of action:

In light of Rat Queens disappointing everybody: Women/NB creators, tweet me w/links to your cool comics starring tuff gals. I’ll RT.

There was an immediate flood of responses and Spike made with the retweets, blowing up my timelines, pausing for a while to catch some sleep before resuming some hours later. I’d be hard pressed to estimate how many creators she retweeted, but I’d say probably in the vicinity of 200-300 before giving it a rest about eight hours later. Best of all? I recognized a mere handful of the comics that got the RT treatment (and by that I mean literally five), so there’s a lot of new comics to check out.

Probably most of them aren’t great, because most of everything isn’t great. But I’ll betcha there’s 20 to 50 in that grouping that damn good to excellent, just waiting for anybody that’s got the time to start collecting links. Anybody that’s really enterprising could Storify the list; do it for the children.

In other news:

  • My evil twin announced pre-orders on his next book open on Monday along with a deadline to provide shipping info for this last Kickstarter and another deadline to register for the chance to take a tropical cruise with him. If you can think of something better to do for a week in September than spend it on a ship with my evil twin, sipping on fruity drinks and learning about writing, I don’t know what it is.
  • Speaking of Kickstarts, Dante Shepherd² announced that he’s doing another page-a-day calendar for 2017, seeing as how the 2014 one was a success³. Kickstarter went up a couple hours ago, with the able help of TopatoCo and Make That Thing.
  • Heh, when I went by the MTT page to check on Shepherd’s calendar, it told me that Jess Fink’s second Chester 5000 collection will finish its funding round in 69 hours. Yes, I am perpetually twelve years old.
  • Finally, KC Green and Anthony Clark are making the best weekly-updating comic publishing today (BACK) and they are not the sort to screw around with pre-orders or crowdfunding. No! They are men of action and when they want to print a collection of their work they by Glob go out and print it and and pay John Keogh and Britt Wilson for enhancements to the book and then they sell it, financial risks be damned. As a result, you can now purchase a copy of BACK Book 1 from the web’s finest boutiquery so go do that.

Spam of the day:

Stunning waterfront property in Michigan’s majestic Upper Peninsula
Private setting with convenient location to ATV / snowmobile trails.

Translation: no roads, no utilities, you will die out here alone. Also, for a significant portion of the year, the Upper Peninsula is cold as fuck.

¹ Long story short — a comic about female empowerment had its original artist yanked from the book after a domestic violence arrest; other artists have since filled in. A hiatus announcement led to the current artist indicating she was removed from the book in favor of the original guy returning — meaning an abusive husband would again be drawing a book about women that don’t put up with shit, yikes.

On a personal note, literally two days before the news broke I picked up Rat Queens trade paperback one on the recommendation of my niece and loved it, having been unaware of the unsavory reputation of the original artist, and was planing on purchasing the second and third collections but now I’m not sure.

² Who is his own evil twin, or at least his own dark reflection. Which one is more like Batman?

³ He was kind enough to send me one — it took up so much space on my desk. This is not a tiny page-a-day, it has heft and also terrible jokes.

Bigger Than The Day

We’re pretty much at deadline if you still want to head to Toronto and the attendant Comics Art Festival therein. Part of what showrunner Chris Butcher’s put together that’s always impressed the hell out of me is how much the city of Toronto is involved in TCAF, and how many events happen around the Fest. In case you’ve been wondering how broad TCAF is, check out the list of associated events.

Exhibitions launched 12 days ago, discussions and salons are taking place, artistic meetups have met up (some with sophisticated adult beverages), gallery shows are opening, academics are convening, book launches are happening, international receptions will celebrate the creators of multiple countries, celebrations of previously-marginalized people, concerts, awards, and a plain ol’ party or two.

Plus comics. You know, for kids.

Oh, and a world’s worth of the best guests and exhibitors mixing it up on five different programming tracks plus (for the first time) portfolio reviews. Everything and everybody significant in comics is converging on Toronto except for the otherwise-ubiquitous Jim Zub who is presently busy gettin’ drunk in Japan¹.

So to whatever degree it is practical for you to do so, get up to The Big Smoke², get you some comics, and if you see Chris Butcher thank him for all the work he does year ’round to make TCAF the best show for its size in the world.

PS: Yuko is going to be there and she is totally going to have an 18+ Stucky minicomic that she and Jess Fink did together and that is the best thing ever.

PPS: I forget how many days it’s been since I mentioned that Meredith Gran last achieved a New Best Octopus Pie Strip, but in any event the clock has been reset to one day and counting. Holy crap, so much story, so much emotion, and the best representation of inner mental state all packed into one image. Eve’s lizard brain is my new hero.

Spam of the day:

Don’t-Take a Cruise! Rent a Yacht! All Budgets & Sizes Available

You have radically overestimated the degree to which I wish to take a cruise, and my recreation budget. I guess thanks for the second half?

¹ I’m so envious about the stop he and his lovely bride made at Ikebukuro’s owl cafe.

² Southern Ontario version.

Oh Glob, No

Tom Siddell, you perfect bastard, how could you do this to us?

Let me back up. Siddell has done three print side-stories to Gunnerkrigg Court’s main story — Annie In The Forest: Part One, Annie In The Forest: Part Two, and Traveller: A Story From Beyond The Walls — the first two of which have for some time also been available for free viewing online.

Today, Traveller joined the Annies, in both English and Galician¹, at the Extras page.

Okay, no spoilers, but it’s a heartbreaker and Tom Siddell is bad and mean and bad some moreyou made Paz cry, you son of a bitch.

(Siddell is actually a very nice guy without a mean bone in his body and the story both works on multiple levels and is structured well; I bear him no ill will, but damn it’s dusty in here.)

With that preparation, please read and enjoy Traveller² and if you like it, please remember that he’s given you something for free that other people paid for, and maybe drop him a few bob? And if you need something cheerier after having your guts ripped out and stomped on the pavement (>ahem<), maybe enjoy this fine Nedroid Comic shared earlier today by Anthony Clark; it ends on a positive note!³ Now get outside and enjoy the weekend.


Spam of the day:

And they passed the night in a crockery-jar who had a little curl this ball was her favorite plaything

I received this from Glenda. I ain’t want to go out and be Glenda’s acid guide! On the plus side, Achewood is back with the first Fuck You Friday of 2016.

¹ The story concerns Paz and her visit home from the Court, and Galician is her native tongue; I’m told it’s linguistically sort of midway between Castilian (that is to say, formal) Spanish and Portuguese.

² Enjoy may not be the most accurate word, but you get the idea.

³ Or at least as positive as Reginald is going to manage.

That Didn’t Take Long

So I went to bed early and wasn’t awake to watch Iron Circus Comics — aka Spike, aka The Woman Who Is Going To Own Comics Publishing, aka Maybe If You Apologize For All Those Years You Told Her She Was Never Going To Succeed She’ll Have You Killed Mercifully — launch its latest Kickstarter. Kickstarters, actually, as two pieces of pure, uncut smut went up together, and you can back one, the other, or (and stay with me here because this is a a little out there) both of them at the same time.

So, uh, maybe assume all the links in this post are probably not things you want to click on if your boss can see.

First up, Yes, Roya, a book-length graphic novel of quality erotica, written by Spike herself and illustrated by Ghost Green, with Kinomatika on the cover. It’s the early 1960s, there’s cartoonists involved, and sexy times as a young upstart finds that life behind closed doors in the Camelot era was decidedly kinkier than your parents and grandparents let on.

Secondly, My Monster Boyfriend, continuing the Iron Circus tradition of ladycentric erotica anthologies, this one is exactly what it says on the cover: there are monsters, and they are various people’s boyfriends, and there may just be hot, hot monster action going on. Lots of creators on this one, and Spike hasn’t released the full contributor list yet, but you’ll find names like EK Weaver, Jess Fink, Gail freakin’ Simone, and Trudy Cooper.

And since this is a Spike Kickstarter, a couple things we knew were going to happen did in fact happen:

  1. The goal was reached ridiculously quickly after launch. Keep in mind it was 9:00pm on the east coast when the campaign went up and promptly started raising US$1000/min before tapering off to US$10K in 15 minutes, US$20K in the first hour, and the entire US$40K goal in less than eight hours. Remember, this was overnight, and word doesn’t spread so quickly when your audience are away from keyboards.
  2. There’s gonna be bonuses. As a result of we at Fleen bungling a description of Iron Circus’s bonus structure a little while back , Spike reached out to us and let us know that these projects would use a different pay structure than previous project¹, one that will scale with the number of pages as well as the overfunding. For My Monster Boyfriend and Yes, Roya, pay starts at US$75/page, with an additional US$5/page for US$10,000 over goal.

    One may note that (as of this writing), pay rates are already up to US$80/page. Assuming this one goes follows the same funding patterns as prior ICC smut offerings, I’d expect funding above US$150K (NB: not a formal prediction; we’re still 8 – 12 hours away from being able to use the FFFmk2), meaning page rates of US$130 or more.

Oh, yeah, and the first stretch goal — a reprint of Smut Peddler 2012 — was met by the time Spike woke up this morning. There will be more. Oh, and did I mention that there are previews, more than 20 pages worth, over on the Kickstarter page? Because there are; no links, I’m gonna make you go read the damn thing and find ’em yourself … and before you complain, I just told you about free porn so hush.

The Smut Peddler Double Header runs until Wednesday, 24 February.

Spam of the day:

why havn’t you claimed this Walmart gift yet?

Because Walmart is a rapacious, evil corporation run by the vampiric scions of the Walton family with a bloodthirstiness that would make Vlad Tepes say Hey, maybe just chill a little, and I would rather deal with the bastard child of Verizon and Comcast for the rest of my natural life than set foot in a Walmart. The only worthwhile thing Walmart has even done is be so awful that provoked not a single twinge of sympathy in anybody anywhere.

¹ Briefly, contributors got US$50/page, and a US$50 bonus for every US$5000 over goal.

In Non-Paris Desk News

There were a few other things (some of which got displaced by yesterday’s dumbassery) so let’s talk about them, yes?

  • Jess Fink has finished — for the second time, no less — the ongoing story of Chester 5000 and the people who built him, love him, and love each other. It started off as straight Victorian robo-erotica (that old saw) way the heck back in 2008 but quickly became something more. It wasn’t just about heaving bosoms sprung free of corsets and a startling array of gadgets put to increasingly hot use; it was about neglect and jealousy and absorption and fury and reconciliation and forgiveness — it was about love.

    And then in 2011, Fink went back and told both what came before and what’s happened since the original run of Chester; subtitled Isabelle and George, it dealt with the characters in even greater depth, added a dash of adventure and vengeance, and gave us a better idea of who these people (Chester himself appears less and less as the story goes along) really are. It’s full of heart, completely lacking in dialogue, and immediately engrossing. Not to mention hotter than hell. Thanks for letting us ride along for the last 300 or so pages, Jess. Here’s hoping that we get a print collection of Isabelle and George to go alongside the first Chester collection.

  • We mentioned not too long ago the Voltron-like collaboration of KC Green and Shmorky to make some animated bumpers for [adult swim]. Via Shmorky, we now have a collection of GIF clips from the other bumpers (ten in all), which are conveniently collected for your viewing pleasure at NerdSpan
  • From the Big Damn Numbers department, today is as good as day as any to declare an end to Child’s Play 2015; per the CP site (which hasn’t changed for the past couple of days), the lifetime fundraising total for the campaign sits at a little north of forty million damn dollars. Taking into account data from previous years, the history of Child’s Play looks like:

    2003: $250,000
    2004: $310,000
    2005: $605,000
    2006: $1,024,000
    2007: $1,300,000
    2008: $1,434,377
    2009: $1,780,870
    2010: $2,294,317
    2011: $3,512,345
    2012: $5,085,761
    2013: $7,600,000
    2014: $8,430,000
    2015: $6,438,053
    Total as of 7 January 2016, the arbitrary end of CPXIII: $40,064,723

    So, in case you were wondering what it looks like when Child’s Play doesn’t raise more than the prior year, it looks like they still raised almost six and a half million. If that counts as failure, we could all use some more failure in our lives and endeavours.

  • New show alert: Pat Race, the never-still creative force behind Alaska Robotics, has with some partners brought a bunch of indy/web comics types up to Juneau, Alaska for talks, cultural events, and meet & greets; word on the street is that the creators have had a fabulous time, and the denizens of America’s least-accessible capital city have enjoyed ’em even more. So how to top a record like that? With a mini-con, naturally:

    I’m very happy to announce Alaska Robotics Mini-Con, a festival and artist camp taking place right here in Juneau from April 22-26th.

    Aaron, Lou and I have been hosting guest artists for several years through our work at the Alaska Robotics Gallery and JUMP Society as well as through partnerships with other non-profit organizations like the Friends of the Juneau Public Libraries. We’ve also spent many years attending and exhibiting at comic conventions and arts festivals. Encouraged by those wonderful experiences, we decided it was time for us to host our own tiny comic convention and artist getaway.

    I hesitate to even use the phrase “comic convention” when describing the event but those who have attended such things know that the term has grown to include a much more broad collection of pop and contemporary arts, games, music and more. We’re planning to embrace the spirit of those outside conventions but provide a far more down-to-earth, Southeast Alaska experience.

    The draft schedule calls for a one-day public event on Saturday, 23 April, followed by a two day artists camping retreat with a limited number of attendee slots — applications will open on 18 January. Look for a roster of guests in the near term but for now, if this sounds like fun, I’d say start looking into transport to Juneau before knowing the lineup; the on-faith, camping-centric thing works for MaxFunCon, and it ought to work as well for ARMCon. Given the talent that Race has attracted to Juneau in the past — Kate Beaton, Vera Brosgol, Dylan Meconis & Katie Lane — I’d bet on there being some killer guests hanging ’round the campfire under the northern lights.

Spam of the day:

Reverse your Blood Pressure in only 7 Days

If I reverse my blood pressure, doesn’t that make my entire cardiovascular system collapse? That doesn’t sound good. Then again, this particular bit of sparkling medical science (featuring the obligatory one weird food) came from an actual email address that I swear I am not making up: Dr. Dave <cretin @[redacted].date>. That’s just beautiful.

In Which I Must Disagree With Ryan North

In all other respects I generally agree with him, but I am firm in this: feta is gross and its presence on an otherwise-delicious pizza is just wrong. I’m getting ahead of myself, we’ll come to that bit later.

  • It’s been maybe six weeks since David Morgan-Mar (PhD, LEGO®©™etc and semi-pro Mr Bean impersonator) announced that he was taking legal advice to determine if it would be possible to produce a printed version of Irregular Webcomic without running afoul of the LEGO corporate behemoth. It appears that the answer was affirmative, given the announcement today:

    I have started work to have collections of Irregular Webcomic! strips printed in book format, for purchase.

    Boom. That’s the sound of perhaps the longest-running webcomic without a print collection (going on thirteen years old) giving its readers what they want. Given a deep archive filled with interleaved storylines, Morgan-Mar opted out of the sequential approach, and will be going with a themed collection:

    The first book will collect all of the Fantasy theme strips up to the hiatus period which began with strip #3198. By my count, that’s 504 strips. With some bonus material, we’re estimating about 140 pages.

    Smart move, by the way — grabbing the first 500 or so strips in IW history would require readers to hop between fourteen different storylines, and not get much resolution on any of them. Also, I’ll note that the Fantasy theme probably makes the least use of actual LEGO assets¹ (other than the Me theme), as the main characters are painted RPG miniatures and not LEGO minifigs; the branded building bricks are used more for backgrounds, props, sets, and side characters. Having less prominent LEGO stuff in the LEGO-themed comic is probably a safe move from a legal standpoint, at least to start.

    Morgan-Mar is presently working with the wonderful folks at Make That Thing, with plans to launch the requisite Kickstarter around the first of the year so as to avoid the holiday confusion (not to mention the tax implications of making a bunch of money in 2015 but not spending it until 2016). I’ll keep you appraised of any future developments, but I will say that this exciting news. Very exciting.

  • Speaking of unreasonably large Kickstarted books from longtime webcomickers, Ryan North officially finished the last stretch goal of the To Be Or Not To Be campaign: he made a pizza that looked like Kate Beaton’s Hamlet portrait and ate it. And then, because he is a Ryan-sized man and has prodigious hunger, he also made one that looked like Beaton’s Ophelia and then ate it, too.

    There was a third pizza².

    This third pie resembled Beaton’s take on Juliet, and with that, North announced the sequel to TBONTB, the long-rumo[u]red Romeo and/or Juliet. Key points: the book will not be crowdfunded, but rather published by Riverhead Books, a division of Penguin. As a result, a hard release date can be promised (7 June 2016), the book is in a final form (no stretch goals), and will feature 400 pages and (by my count) ninety friggin’ artists providing illustrations. I ain’t typing out the list but you can find a copy/paste of it below the cut.

    Oh, and let me point out this one line near the bottom of the announcement:

    I can’t say more about the book JUST YET, but I will say this: as someone who has backed the original Kickstarter and is also awesome, be sure to hold on to your preorder email receipt. For SURPRISES :0 [emphasis original]

    Done, and done!

  • Still on Kickstarted books, the TJ & Amal omnibus got a nice writeup today at The AV Club, and not to do with Kickstarted books at all, yesterday’s Nick Trujillo news has revealed itself: Glitched is running as a Twitter account, and appears to make use of the new polling feature. IN-teresting.

Spam of the day:

You have missed messages vindication Cordially Skype+ service

Weird, it’s almost like I’m being invited to click on links of unknown provenance by services that I don’t use.

¹ Or maybe the Space theme, for similar reasons.

² cf: Ryan-sized man.


Exhibitor Maps

Man, I dig exhibitor maps for conventions. I love being able to figure out my approach to talk to all the people I want to talk to in the least amount of time. Sometimes the maps are huge and sprawling, and sometimes there’s no point in trying to point out where the cool web/indie-comics types are because you’d just end up putting a circle on the entire damn map that says HERE on it.

  • It’s the latter case that we concern ourselves with today, as both the SPX and TopatoCon exhibitor maps have gone up, and they’re chock full of creators you’re going to want to see. They’re also on a humane scale, so I don’t have to do one of those maps-hacks where I show you where to go on the showfloor, as I’ll have to do sometime next week for NYCC¹.
  • Since we’re already talking about TopatoCon (because let’s face it, we’re always talking about TopatoCon), one might point out a couple of new programs on the schedule. At noon on Sunday, please note the killer description for Pleasure Is The Measure:

    Join us for a sciencey, sexy, feminist conversation about women, their bodies, and comics — featuring Kate Leth (Kate Or Die), Jess Fink (Chester 5000), Danielle Corsetto (Girls With Slingshots), and Spike (Smut Peddler) and moderated by NYT bestselling author Dr. Emily Nagoski (Come As You Are).

    Smart ladies who know their way around what makes things sexy as all hell? Yes, please.

  • Also, one modestly points you to the new official description of the 5:00pm Saturday event in the podcast space²:

    Join host Gary Tyrrell ( as our three contestants Frank Gibson (Bee & Puppycat, Capture Creatures), Holly Black (The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Darkest Part Of The Forest) and Holly Rowland (TopatoCo VP) square off in a tournament-style cocktail challenge. Each contestant will be given a box of mystery ingredients and will make up a theme cocktail on the fly. One contestant will be eliminated in each round by a panel of judges chosen from the audience. Who will emerge victorious and who will get 86’d?

    86’d/eighty-sixed is bartender slang for cut off and ejected from the establishment; think Chopped but for booze. This is gonna be fun, and I want to make ti clear that I am not the one putting together the challenges and will be just as surprised with what the contestants have to work with as you will. It’s not Cutthroat Bar and I am not channeling my inner Evil Alton Brown³.

    Oh, and because it’s a damn shame that cocktail enthusiast Christopher Hasting will have to miss Boozetopia (due to his comedy-writing workshop happening at the same time), I will need a volunteer to take the best drink of each round across the hall to him.

    Also, if you are going to be at TopatoCon, are at least 21 years old, and interested in being a judge for 86’d, I’m looking for people who will be able to articulate what they like (or don’t) about a drink, not just chug the damn thing with an eye towards getting wasted. Please email me (gary) with the subject line TASTING AND JUDGMENT, at this-here website (

  • Speaking of Hastings, news comes today that once again Marvel is coming to him to add to their cape-comedy offerings:

    The Gwen Stacy/Deadpool mash-up begins in a three-part back-up story by writer Christopher Hastings and artist Danilo Beyruth beginning in Howard the Duck #1 and going through the two subsequent issues.

    In December’s Gwenpool Special #1, She-Hulk throws a holiday party and invites many Marvel luminaries, with Gwenpool showing up. Writers Gerry Duggan, Charles Soule and Christopher Hastings, along with artists Danilo Beyruth, Langdon Foss, Gurihiru are listed for the book.

    Marvel, just do what we all know you need to do and give Hastings and ongoing title where he can blend the action with the goofy. Because is there anybody else that would throw in a scene with Tony Stark telling Reed Richards about how many weddings he’d been to that summer where Get Lucky got played4? No, there is not, and that little bit of human interaction is what’s missing from so many cape books (the magnificent Squirrel Girl excepted, obviously). Give him a book, Marvel. Doooo iiiiiit.

Spam of the day:

Hi, I do think this is a great website. I stumbledupon it ;)

I never use StumbleUpon; it renders like shit in my browser.

¹ Also, I’m never thrilled with the interactive maps that take you someplace else every time you click on the damn thing and which require JavaScript/Flash to run and are completely useless on mobile.

² AKA the bar.

³ Maybe next year.

4 Four.

Before The Holiday Rush

Hey. So I have to travel I-95 — aka Satan’s Own Highway — alter this afternoon, the Friday before a long weekend. This is gonna be brief.

SPX has revealed its programming slate, and it appears to be the usual (i.e.: high on quality, low on quantity). Each day will feature two rooms of programming, one with events on the hour, the other with events on the half hour, from midday on. Highlights include:

Have a heck of a weekend, Statesians. Maybe I’ll see you on Monday, maybe not.

Spam of the day:

Download Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star Movie.

I wouldn’t watch that shit with your eyes, my friend; I ain’t gonna watch it with mine.

¹ Make comics while queer.

It’s Changing Faster Than I Can Adapt! Soon It Will Achieve True Intelligence!

TopatoCon, that is. For starters, there’s more names on the exhibitor’s page — I noticed Kevin Budnick, Gillian Goerz, Jonathan Griffiths, Phil Kahn, and Stacey King in addition to the previoiusly-announced guest below the cut — and there’s news of a pre-con concert!

TopatoCon proudly presents:

To kick off our convention weekend, we’ve invited some of our favorite musicians to play a concert that’s open to the public!

8 p.m., Doors open at 7:30
Academy of Music Theatre
274 Main St
Northampton, MA 01060

$15 General
$12 Students

Purchase at the box office, by telephone at (413) 584-9032, ext. 105, or click here to order online.

Reminder: this is before the con even starts, and you’re entertained; further, those that have never seen The Doubleclicks or Molly Lewis before can sample their (considerable) talents and have the opportunity to meet them the next day (although Lewis isn’t listed on the exhibitor site yet, I doubt she’s getting out of town immediately after the show) and buy all their stuff. That’s at least a win-win, possiby a win-win-win-win.

In other news there’s a pair of comics that tell stories about being in comics. The first is from Maki Naro, and tells of his righteous irritation at yet another “contest” for illustration/comics pros that amounted to spec work; he actually submitted it to the contest-holders in question, which I think is brilliant and laudable. The other is from Faith Erin Hicks (h/t: Heidi Mac at The Beat), and tells of how you can only break into comics by knowing the secret handshake and living in a big city oh wait no, that’s not how it works. Both of them are worth your time.

Spam of the day:

You are requested to claim your pending commission
payout in the amount of $7,302.29 earned since
you registered for our programme.

Best regards,


Bite me, “Gary”