June 18th, 2003

smokin'

New post, no links, much meandering nonsense

Howdy. I'm feeling lousy and my nap didn;t make me feel any better so that means time to post. Actually, I've got nothing to gripe about, I'm just killing time before I can go to sleep. Having trouble with my right side again, neck to hand and all that. I was supposed to go to a neurologist weeks ago but our schedule has been horrible and while I know it's important I haven'tmade time for it. I know, "make time", as my jewish mother just told me via the wonder of telephone technology. yeah, yeah.

So. here's some stuff on my little "blog" post-it. No links, go use google, you're all so damned smart.

The second issue of Super 7 magazine shipped recently. It's a magazine devoted to Japanese genre toys, vinyl figures, Kubricks, spark toys, tin, mechanical, etc. I would be a huge collector of this nonsense if I was well-to-do, since I'm not, magazines like this somewhat satisfy my insane desire to own massive quantities of Godzilla toys, Booska figures, Micronauts (okay, sorry, Microman. Sheesh), robots, ultra-monsters, Kubricks, Monsterisms, et al.Well, I do own a silly amount of these things, mostly bought or bartered during the Space Ghost years when we were doing a bit better and had no plans for the future. I've got a number of Ultraman monsters, Booska figures and Godzilal items, but haven't really picked anything up lo these past few years. No room, no dough. ANyway, if you're like me and like this crazy stuff, SUper 7 is for you. I picked up the first issue at Hanley's the week after getting #2, there's short but informative (and often funny and self-deprecating) articles with quality pics of vinyls and wind-ups and figures. Slick paper, fancy design, good production values, and no obnoxious fanzine fanboy ego overdrive, no "we are the only fans who know anything" indiocy. Come one, come all. And there's Kaiju art -- er, big monster drawings -- by people like Coop, CHarles Burns, and various animators and lowbrow artistes from around le world. A neat little magazine for those who care about such things. The only downside -- reading it makes me want to sell crank and buy up '60's and '70's toys like a madman. Booska...Hedorah...King Joe...Tiger 7...Kikaider...uuugghhh...

On a semi-sorta-similar tip, the latest Ginat Robot has come out. As always, a swell mix of east meets west with some odds and ends thrown in, this time the big "odd" being a tour of the Schulz museum. Always fun and informative and interesting. I used "and" oddly, there. I'm no editor, sue me.

Like vintage and retro appliances? Like tv? Sure, who doesn't? Even the blind scrape and crawl to get at a tv. Anyway, go google for the Predicat brand of modern retor and repro television sets. They is to friggin' die for. Yeesh. If the lottery played me, I'd but three or five of these and put vinyl toys on them.

Actually, I did pick up a vinyl toy today, the Jim Woodring "Jiva" figure made in Japan and imported here via Diamond to comical-type shops today. I love vinyls, love Woodring, so I love this. It's a sort of addendum to his swell-looking "Crazy Newt" series (from Sony, I believe), which some comic and hobby shops also received today. Flippin' heck, these are nice. Also shipping is the Peter Bagge series, the Rodney Alan Greenblatt series, and something else I don't know the name of. I make no bones about it, I love these kinds of toys and am insanely jealous of anyone who has had their characters sculpted in vinyl and reproduced by underpaid Chinese laborers. The few times we've almost made Milk and Cheese figures or been approached with an offer to make figures the whole thing just fell apart like JIm Shooter returning to write for Marvel. A small 'sigh" on the sigh-o-meter, I admit, but a sigh nonetheless.

Oh, and again, speaking of toys, duh, I bought a Micronaut the other day. Sarah and I were ina mall in Philadelphia after her(hopefully) final dentist appointment for a while, and Suncoast Video was selling toys off ridiculously cheap. So after some waffling Sarah made me but Baron Karza, because she knew I had him as a kid and "missed him". Yeah, sad, sad. I gave him away with a mess of Megos and GI Joes and Micronauts when I was thirteen, figuring I was getting too old for toys. Then I went home and cried like an infant. Anyway, part of my love for Karza was he was my most succesful and daring shoplift. I stole him from the Kay-Bee in the Kings Plaza mall in Brooklyn, literally while standing in-between two security guards. How I adored my ill-gotten Baron. The new one brought back many memories. And he looks so small and goofy. I am glad I got him, to be honest. Man, I shoplifted the hell out of Micronauts as a kid. Maybe I'll do a strip on my brief but exciting shoplifting career, alluded to in the "Soda Thief" strip.

Which reminds me, we finished up the work on the delayed and late second Dork trade, Circling the Drain, several days ago. Sarah had a lot to do and I really appreciate all her time and effort. And I swear, I never threatened to kill the cats if she didn't finish the pre-press, that's a horrible rumor somebody started. Anyway, I ended up doing four new pages, an introduction and a follow-up strip about Dork #7, as well as a few editorial-type illos and an unpublished pin-up. Sarah put together a few pages of sketches and design stuff, and the color section includes the Journal cover, the Devil Puppet t-shirt, the Murder Can Be Fun cover and all the color strips, covers and back covers from Dork #7-10. Should be nice, fingers crossed, and should eventually be out in July, fingers crossed.

Update (insert teletype sound effects here): Apparently the Fantagraphics finanical situation has brightened due to an overwhelming vote of fan and professional support. Except for the people who hate them and threw brickbats at them via their modems. Anyway, hopefully this will mean they'll weather the crunch and get that Will Elder book out next year.

In other comic shop purchase news, I was extremely happy to replace my copy of The Comic Strip Art of Lyonel Feininger (feat. The Kinder Kids), which has reappeared in shops at a low price of $8 (I think it's been solicited by Bud Plant). My original copy was destroyed some years ago via a vengeful act by one Mr Jinx, a lowly cat who was not entirely happy about Sarah and I abandoning him for a San Diego convention. He expressed his outrage by urinating in our small bedroom closet, destroying the Feiningr book along with several other oversized books, including my prized Fantagraphics Popeye Sunday collections, some of which I have still not been able to replace. Anyway, Mr Jinx, if you are reading this -- stay the &@%!*! away from this one if you valuie your little cat life. I mean it.

Oh, speaking of animals, there's a chance I might be working on another script for a DHC anthology, stemming from the kind reception afforded the story Jill Thompson and I turned in for the Hauntings book. It would be a sequel, of sorts, to that strip, featuring the same characters in another supernatural situation. I hope it happens, as I really have grown to love these characters (a group of dogs and a cat)and I'd like to work with Jill again. We shall see, what we shall see.

Finally, the Mocca event is taking place this coming Sunday, in NYC. I am hoping to see some of you there, or others like you. We'll have no new books available, alas, but we will have plenty of the old ones if anyone has a hole in their collection, and wants one in their wallets, Har har. Too funny, that boy. We'll be bringing whatever HOF buttons we have left for sale, as well as a small selection of artwork, including some original pages, layout sketches (cheap) and color pin-ups. I'm also bringing a portfolio of xeroxed pages from works in progress and things that won't be on comic shelves, as well as copies of Jill T's wonderful artowkr for the Hauntings job. If anyone is attending and wishes us to bring a particular book that they want to buy, feel free to e-mail us and we'll hold a copy for you. We'll also have SLG catalogues and for those who stop by and pick something up, we'll be giving away copies of the SLG Free Comic Book Day anthology, along with other comic and card freebies (while supplies last). Also, there will be an announcement made by the Harvey Awards committee that will provide more details about the programs move to Mocca and NYC next year. I guess we'll find out soon if I'm keeping my emcee job. I hope to see a great turnout this year, this is a terrific show and if you're on the fence about it, don't be, it's really worth coming to.Cheap to get in, great guests, good panels and screenings, beautiful NYC location and venue, bglah blah blah. Moccanyc.org --there, you hgappy, there's a link. Forgot the www. stuff, so what?

Last but not least, or maybe it is, I dunno - we may be attending the SPX after all. We'll have to see how it plays out, but our publisher, Dan Vado, is apparently going, and we haven't seen Dan in years, and we're looking into going and sitting at the SLG table during the show. If we go. We'll let you know when it's figured out.

Okay, that's a big, fat, pointless post. I have a headache now and need to eat something before I go to bed and try to sleep while thinking about how I'll die.

Latersville, kids!