Posts Tagged ‘A Dance with Dragons’

Carnival of souls: Fluxblog 2008, Gabrielle Bell, Eleanor Davis, Grant Morrison, The Hobbit, more

August 1, 2012

* Drop what you’re doing and download Matthew Perpetua’s 8-disc Fluxblog 2008 Survey Mix. Ooftah, the first half of disc 2.

* Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit is now a trilogy. Whoever tells me this and expects me to complain, he understands nothing about Sean, nothing.

* The Secret Acres hivemind weighs on in the Comics Journal/Kickstarter/SP7 fight in high Secret Acres thinkpost style, while Dan Nadel clarifies a couple of his points from the middle of what’s either the best-timed or worst-timed internet hiatus in comics history.

* Another day, another enormously dispiriting interview with Grant Morrison about (among other things) the legal issues surrounding Superman and Watchmen. This one sees Morrison go full Barkley, saying “I’m not a role model” while not-so-subtly mocking Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons for the shitty contract they signed in “hey, I got mine” fashion, in addition to positioning his own refusal to stick up for Siegel & Shuster in any way besides celebrating their artistic accomplishments as a noble refusal to treat them like victims. Yeah, it’s a bummer alright, especially coming from a guy who argues that superheroes are contemporary mankind’s greatest and most inspiring artistic exemplars. Given that his goal is for all that to rub off on the culture to which he exposes them, it’s weird that he finds it so baffling his readers would expect some of that to have rubbed off on him as well.

* Semi-related: Ghost Rider creator Gary Friedrich is appealing the appallingly punitive decision against him in his copyright fight with Marvel.

* A pair of fine reviews of very important collections are up at The Comics Journal: Nicole Rudick on Gloriana by Kevin Huizenga and Brandon Soderberg on The Furry Trap by Josh Simmons. “The Sunset” in the former and “Cockbone” in the latter would make a list of my top favorite short comics of all time; “The Sunset” would top it in fact.

* Dan Clowes is going to make a show called The Landlord for HBO with the directors of that nightmarish-looking Ruby Spears thing.

* I’m kind of the opposite of Tom Spurgeon here: I knew Fantagraphics would be collecting the Ignatz series New Tales of Old Palomar by Gilbert Hernandez, but apparently I never said so on this blog, if my search function is to be believed.

* I’ve really been enjoying Dorothy Berry’s posts on Ernie Bushmiller’s Nancy for Comics Workbook, like this one about how rare Nancy is as a fictional female child who is neither a tomboy nor a girly-girl. My daughter is young enough to still be in that limbo state where she dresses more or less like a girl because we buy girl’s clothes for her but her behavior is essentially genderless, and I can tell you that in flipping through the Nancy Is Happy collection, I see a lot of that kid in her.

* The Mindless Ones’ Bobsy gives the business to Saga by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples, a comic I did not like at all.

* Gabrielle Bell has wrapped up her July Diary series for the year. If it wasn’t quite the revelation that last year’s effort was, it still contained a freaking zombie comic, and a two-panel autobiography that just slays me.

* The Burning Brothel, a Raymond Pettibon tumblr, is a delightful resource for an increasingly influential-on-comics artist.

* Eleanor Davis is laying it on the line in her comics and sketches these days. Don’t miss it.

* Well, Arsene Schrauwen #1 by Olivier Schrauwen sure looks good.

* I think every artist should be required by law to do a series of Batman character portraits, and I will be introducing this legislation as the Bill Finger Bill. Jordan Crane caught Michael DeForge’s stab at it, which I’d never seen before and which is awesome. Who’s the smiley guy next to the Joker, though?

* Jonny Negron.

* I always enjoy it when Frank Santoro works a little blue.

* Nice little comic by Mr. Freibert.

* Jordan Crane’s been posting processy glimpses of an upcoming contribution to the next issue of the Fort Thunder-centric Monster anthology (! did we know this was on the way?) to his tumblr, and I know this’ll come as a huge surprise but it looks gorgeous.

* Go buy comics from Andy “q v i e t” Burkholder’s Bigcartel store. Guy’s talented. (Via Michael DeForge.)

* Jeez, C.F. makes a lot of comics.

* Real Life Horror: This is what policework in America looks like now.

* Glenn Greenwald, inspired by Chris Hayes’s book Twilight of the Elites:

I see no evidence that “rich people are very, very afraid” — at least not by their actions. And that, to me, is the problem. That fear — a lot more of it — is necessary. Their ability to rope themselves off from the society they are degrading, combined with the para-militarization of domestic police forces (aggressively displayed in response to the Occupy movement and related protests), and the rapidly increasing domestic powers of surveillance and detention (designed to intimidate the citizenry and thus deter and guard against mass protests), have convinced them, I think, that they need not fear any protest movements or social unrest, that America can and will become more and more of a police state to suppress it. An elite class that is free to operate without limits — whether limits imposed by the rule of law or fear of the responses from those harmed by their behavior — is an elite class that will plunder, degrade, and cheat at will, and act endlessly to fortify its own power.

*Attention A Song of Ice and Fire fans who’ve read all five books: This EXTREMELY SPOILERY George R.R. Martin interview is unusually informative on various obscure but fervently debated plot points.

* I am allergic to watching anything Olympics, but I understand the opening ceremony, directed by Danny Boyle and music-directed by Underworld, was quite something — basically a tribute to socialized health care, rock and roll, and children’s literature. Most of the people I know from the U.K. feel about the place the way I feel about the U.S., but those people should take comfort in knowing that it’s unimaginable, unimaginable for America to conceive of itself in terms that humanistic. Anyway the soundtrack, Isles of Wonder, is out, and though most of the big famous songs I understand were in the production don’t show up here, there’s still a whole lot of terrific Underworld music, so I’m happy.

A Dance with Crows, A Feast for Dragons

June 26, 2012

I created a new-reader-friendly combined reading order for A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons, the fourth and fifth books in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. The two books cover the same time period but due to various considerations they had to be published separately and thus split up all the characters, half in one volume and half in the other, a decision some readers find frustrating; this is my attempt to fuse it back together in a way that newcomers to the two books can enjoy for their first time through if they want. (The list and the post that explains it are both basically the non-spoilery variants on the original reading order I came up with for veterans of the books a week or two back.) Have fun!

A proposed A Feast for Crows/A Dance with Dragons merged reading order, with explanation

June 6, 2012

I think I figured out a good way to merge the two most recent books in A Song of Ice and Fire, which split a single time period’s worth of stories between two groups of characters in two separate volumes. I get pretty deep in the weeds of ASoIaF talk so I kept it on my dedicated site for that sort of thing, but it’s worth your time if you’ve read the series. Check it out.

The Boiled Leather Audio Hour returns!

February 6, 2012

Stefan Sasse and I are back with an all-new episode of our A Song of Ice and Fire podcast, The Boiled Leather Audio Hour. This time out we’ve brought along a very special guest, Amin from A Podcast of Ice and Fire, the grandaddy of ’em all. We’re discussing “Southron Ambitions,” Stefan’s provocative essay for The Tower of the Hand on a certain conspiracy theory advanced by one of the characters in A Dance with Dragons. Read up, then listen up.

Carnival of souls: Special “San Diego Comic-Con Days 1&2” edition

July 22, 2011

* Here are some highlights from Thursday and early Friday at the San Diego Comic-Con…

* I recommend following Robot 6’s CCI2011 tag for your San Diego news needs. Tom Spurgeon is also keeping a running log of the major comics publishing announcements, with occasional commentary, at his recently revived Comics Reporter site — that’ll be worth checking daily as well.

* Pyongyang/Shenzhen/Burma Chronicles author Guy Delisle’s next travelogue will be Jerusalem: Chronicles from the Holy City, which will take place during the “Operation Cast Lead” Gaza War. That’s something to look forward to, though as I said at Robot 6, it won’t be without controversy. (I’ve already gotten one condemnatory Google Alert hit for that post.)

* Marvel will be releasing day-and-date digital versions of its major Spider-Man and X-Men comics. If you go in for the Marvel Movie Conspiracy Theory, you’ll note that these are the two major franchises that Marvel Studios doesn’t own the rights to, rather than the Avengers and their associated characters. Marvel says they’ll start rolling out same-day digital copies of their other titles at logical jumping-on points, like first issues or the start of major new storylines.

* Sticking with the digital beat, Top Shelf is releasing digital versions of over 70 of its graphic novels.

* Frank Miller’s Holy Terror looks quite entertaining. I hadn’t realized it was in black and white, although I guess with Lynn Varley out of the picture it stands to reason.

* Chris Mautner interviews Brian Ralph about his first-person zombie survival story Daybreak. Fun fact: I have a short piece on this book in the August issue of Maxim!

* In the Friday iteration of DC’s daily panel on its “New 52” linewide relaunch, DC Co-Publisher Dan DiDio said planning for the relaunch began in October 2010, when 23 writers met to talk about the line’s direction. That’s the first firm date I’ve heard — it’s months before most of the speculation I’ve seen has pegged the initiation of the project — and the first time I’ve heard that that many writers were involved.

* In other news…

* I took a quick look at Grant Morrison’s recent comments on Siegel & Shuster’s claim to Superman on Robot 6.

* Scott Pilgrim creator Bryan Lee O’Malley on George R.R. Martin, A Song of Ice and Fire, and nerd culture’s cult of disappointment.

* Speaking of which, Sam Bosma has been doing some extraordinary portraits of ASoIaF characters lately. Spoiler warning: Unless you’ve read the first four books, there are plenty of characters in there you probably haven’t met, so look out.

* Those two links remind me: Things have really been hopping over at my Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones blog All Leather Must Be Boiled since I finished reading A Dance with Dragons. I’ve been posting a lot of commentary and links to interesting art and reviews, and Elio Garcia and Linda Antonsson, the good folks at the big-deal ASoIaF fan site, have been sending a lot of traffic my way, so there’s some good comment-thread action as well. Do check it out if that’s the sort of thing you’re interested in. My review of/braindump on A Dance with Dragons is a good place to start.

* Peter Jackson has released an official composite image of all 13 Dwarves from The Hobbit. Pretty, pretty good.

* Jason Adams runs down the major horror movies slated for release during the back half of 2011, none of which I will get to see, sob sob sob.

* In defense of chillwave, by Nitsuh Abebe.

Carnival of souls: Special “Back from the Dance” edition

July 18, 2011

* I read A Dance with Dragons. I liked it. If you’ve read it, come talk about it with me, artists Matt Wiegle and Sam Bosma, A Song of Ice and Fire superfans/megaexperts Elio & Linda, and other august personages.

* Last week I assembled a massive gallery of great Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire fanart from around the web for Robot 6. Do check it out; there’s something for everyone, or at least every ASoIaF fan. (This piece is by Rory Phillips.)

* Your top comics story: Peter Laird is discontinuing the Xeric Grants for self-published comics following one final round of grants in May 2012. This is terrible, terrible news. Laird says he’s doing that because digital publishing and digital fundraising have abrogated the need for the Xeric, but I think that’s a massive misreading of a) what kinds of comics are made feasible by webcomics; b) what kind of comics are capable of mounting successful Kickstarter campaigns without having first established a network of contacts in online comics fandom; c) the need North American comics have for one of the few awards that really is a mark of quality (for my money it’s the Xerics, the Ignatzes, and then perhaps the awards given by TCAF and Stumptown). This is going to make things a lot tougher on alternative comics creators — you need look no further than the list of past recipients to see how many noteworthy careers were made possible in part by the Xeric. That’s gone, now. It’s tough to object to Laird’s stated goal of transferring his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle millions from funnybooks to actual improving-people’s-lives charities, but I still think the Xerics will be sorely missed.

* Your other top comics story: Borders is dead.

* Your top nerd story: The Dwarves from The Hobbit look awesome. This is a fanmade photoshop of all the pictures released so far, and it fakes Thorin’s body based on the bust shot we’ve been given, but even so, my Hobbit enthusiasm has been officially awakened.

* Kiel Phegley talks to Grant Morrison about his new prose book about superheroes, Supergods. Superlawsuit watchers may want to note Morrison’s take on Siegel & Shuster.

* Marvel’s Tom Brevoort on what DC does and doesn’t do well: part one, part two. I doubt that many people reading this blog are Marvel or DC partisans, as is the case for the audience of those posts at Robot 6, so maybe you’ll be better capable of seeing just what a gift we readers of superhero comics have in a high-profile top-level editor who’s willing to say what he thinks about most anything, and can do so articulately and with ideas he’s actually thought through over the course of years in the industry, as opposed to regurgitating PR talking points. This is very, very, very rare.

* Speaking of Brevoort, he addresses a complaint I’ve had myself: Though all of his story has been told in Ed Brubaker’s Captain America series, Bucky’s death was relegated to Matt Fraction’s Fear Itself. Brevoort says Brubaker has written an epilogue one-shot that will address the death in the context of his excellent Cap run, which is good news.

* Flannery O’Connor: The Cartoons. ‘Nuff said!

* The hardcover for Jesse Moynihan’s Forming Vol. 1 looks terrific.

* Dan White has launched a new Cindy & Biscuit website at Mindless Ones. I like that comic quite a bit.

* Paul Karasik reviews Joyce Farmer’s Special Exits for The Comics Journal. You, whoever you are, ought to read that book.

* Frank Santoro and I ask: Are comics like jazz — a once popular art form become the province of hobbyists?

* Jeffrey Brown of Clumsy and Incredible Change-Bots fame wrote the upcoming wedding comedy Save the Date starring Allison Brie and Lizzy Caplan. That is just wonderful.

* Whoa, NeilAlien resurfaced! It’s like I’ve died and gone to earlier in 2011.

* I’ll admit it, I love this kind of crazy collector’s project: DC is releasing a $150, 1,216-page DC Comics: The New 52 hardcover containing all 52 first issues from its September relaunch. Speaking of which: Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes! (Cf.) Elsewhere, Toronto’s The Beguiling comic shop is selling all 52 issues for a bundled price of $104; that strikes me as a great idea for retailers.

* Can you imagine getting a letter of praise from a master of your art like the letter Jim Woodring sent Hans Rickheit? Man oh man.

* Jonny Negron’s sexiest illustration, now in color!

* My collaborator Isaac Moylan sure can draw.

* I’m always up for a good look at James Cameron’s Aliens, a film that’s as good at what it does as any I can think of. This one comes courtesy of Edward Copeland.

* David Lynch made an animated video for Interpol’s very good song “Lights” called “I Touch a Red Button.” It’s like an exercise in how much creepy intensity he can wring out of four or five frames. He’s very good at making horrible faces, that’s for sure.

* Wow, watching this attempt to beat Super Mario Bros. with the lowest score possible without saving or cheating made for some pulse-pounding viewing. I was literally cringing and jumping in my seat. The Hammer Brothers sequence is like the 8-bit equivalent of the stairs of Khazad-Dûm.

A Dance with Dragons thoughts

July 18, 2011

I’ve posted an ADwD braindump — likely the first of many — on my A Song of Ice and Fire blog, All Leather Must Be Boiled. Needless to say, SPOILER ALERT.

Blog closed on account of dragons

July 12, 2011

A brief programming note: Blogging will be very light until I finish reading A Dance with Dragons. I will not be using Twitter at all during this time, and will likely stay away from Tumblr and the bulk of the Internet as well. Thank you for your patience, and I’ll see you on the other side.