Carnival of souls: Searching for superstar artists, Dan Slott vs. fan entitlement, more

* Today on Robot 6:

* Tom Brevoort wonders when the next hot young superstar artist will come along. It’s interesting to think about the various criteria that add up to superhero-artist superstardom: It has to be different but not alien, fresh but still a known quantity…It’s a delicate dance. Anyway, my suggestions for potential breakouts were Frazer Irving, James Stokoe, Rafael Grampa, and Cafu; lots of votes for Marco Rudy and Chris Burnham in the comment thread. Who are yours?

* Also, I wrote a thumbsucker on an angry run-in Dan Slott had with a (seemingly) grumpy fan on a message board and what it and the fannish reaction to it (Slott’s the bad guy, of course) says about fandom’s culture of entitlement. (And, to a lesser extent, big-name creators throwing themselves in the troll pits.) I really do feel like the digital piracy debate, the reaction to the Kirby/Siegel/Shuster copyright disputes, and this incident are all of a piece.

* I really liked Tom Spurgeon’s review of Ed Brubaker and Butch Guice’s Captain America #610. The issue was the climax of really the book’s first “No bones about it, Bucky really is Captain America even with Steve Rogers back in action” story arc, and marked the introduction of Bucky/Cap’s logical arch-nemesis — the son of the guy who took Bucky down decades ago, an heir to the original villain in the same way Bucky is the heir to the original Captain. It had a lot of emotional and thematic leverage…and yet it pretty much whiffed on the climactic action set-piece, which felt more like one of those things from Arrested Development where the guy pops and says “And that is why you don’t talk with your mouthful” or whatever than an actual fight with actual life-or-death stakes. Tom explains all of that — and also explains why the issue, and the series, still feels substantial and worthwhile because of all the thematic resonance with America in its dysfunctional dying days of empire that Brubaker packed into the Bucky character.

* Oh, the Onion A.V. Club comics review section. What a scamp! UPDATE: Turns out the A.V. Club was the scamp-ee, not the scamp-er. That sucks.

* Tom Spurgeon’s recurring features of this sort are really useful. I feel like they go underappreciated due to their frequency, if that makes sense, like how people kvetch about all the birthday and “If I Were in Passaic, I’d Go to This” posts as if they weren’t done on top of a full retinue of blogging every day.

* Today’s Topless Robot post in which Rob Bricken takes the words right out of my mouth: a systematic takedown of the soulless Clash of the Titans remake — “so unabashedly mediocre that I hated it more than most genuinely bad movies.” If you recall I felt almost the exact same way; CotT made me swear off of seeing major Hollywood would-be action franchisers for a long, long time.

* Real Life Horror: I feel like what you’re seeing in the supra-legal, corporation-abetted, government-encouraged assault on WikiLeaks, along with conservative politicians and pundits’ repeated calls for Julian Assange’s murder, is the American right’s first baby steps into openly embracing the use of government power to harm and suppress dissidents and political opponents. I expect this to become a core position and applause line for them, like the use of torture. I also expect issues like undoing net neutrality to be folded into it as well, explicitly presented to allow the government and ISPs to prevent dissident groups like WikiLeaks from functioning.

* On a slightly less grim note, Matthew Perpetua examines the legacy, or lack thereof, of the hip-hop group Arrested Development, and what it teaches us about more recent acts, in a series of provocative posts.

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11 Responses to Carnival of souls: Searching for superstar artists, Dan Slott vs. fan entitlement, more

  1. Tom Spurgeon says:

    People kvetch about the birthdays and the if i weres?

  2. I swear I saw someone do so at least once. It stuck in my head.

    • Tom Spurgeon says:

      I’m kidding; people complain about them all the time. The one you’re probably remembering is when I cracked on someone’s blog in a comments thread and someone took a look at my site and said something like “big talk from a guy whose site seems to be primarily focused on wishing artists no one ever heard of a happy birthday” which was pretty funny.

  3. MAD says:

    I get the impression that you are a regular Greenwald reader, Sean, so it should go without saying that, concerning Wikileaks, this isn’t a concerted assault solely from the right. The “left” (whatever those two terms mean…at least as it relates to partisan noise) is just as complicit in this destructive vendetta against Wikileaks and Assange. I would characterize it more as an assault by “the ruling, empowered political class” rather than just “the right.”

    I also doubt these are the first baby steps. I would bet stuff like this has been going on for a long time, especially with whistleblowers (Pentagon Papers come to mind) and it’s definitely a practice as old as time. I don’t know if it feels more overt now because of historical near-sightedness or because we are also (for now, at least, but not if these forces have their way) more connected and aware of these things, despite people’s lack of geographical proximity.

    • You’re absolutely right about it coming from both sides, although the death threats seem mainly concentrated on the Right. What I meant by “baby steps” was not that dissidents and political opponents had never been punished before, but that they’re taking baby steps to being like “yeah, and so what?” about it. As with torture, that’s relatively new.

      • rev'D.76 says:

        It’s the cheap & obvious attempt at character assassination that rankles me. It’s a classic technique, crass enough to gag a maggot. I appreciate that Assange is (seemingly) taking it in stride, but the bad part is that the sex charges will stick– in the public mind, if not in the docket.

        Like calling the opposition a pigfucker: “We can’t imply that…!” “We don’t have to imply it, we just have to make him -deny- it.”

  4. MAD says:

    Also: Holy Crap! The AV Club Comics Review section, *more than* a scamp! How crazy was that?

  5. Bruce Baugh says:

    I saw the Clash of the Titans remake last week and was baffled. It’s beautiful – Olympus has never looked so good, the fab people were gorgeous in their various ways, the whole deal. And it was DULL. I genuinely don’t understand how a movie with so much going for it in so many ways could be so grindingly unengaging.

  6. “I really do feel like the digital piracy debate, the reaction to the Kirby/Siegel/Shuster copyright disputes, and this incident are all of a piece”

    I felt exactly the same way reading that post. It’s like some fans aren’t just indifferent to creators, they positively hate them.

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