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April 2024

Zack Snyder talks up his not-made Wonder Woman 1854 conceptSuperherohype

...what happened to her in her different incarnations?" Snyder said in an interview with Empire Magazine when asked about a tweet in 2021 of Gal Gadot‘s Diana Prince posing in the background of the Crimean War. "My idea for it was that she would travel around the world looking for Ares, and she would go to every place where there was conflict."

Amazon Rush Comic Book

Trina Robbins - August 17, 1938 – April 10, 2024

"Trina Robbins has died"Comicsbeat

"Trina Robbins, Creator and Historian of Comic Books, Dies at 85. Obsessed with comics from a young age, she was a pioneer in a male-dominated field"NY Times

"Trailblazing Comics Icon Trina Robbins Dies At Age 85 – artist, writer, advocate, scholar and mentor"Forbes

"Trina Robbins, comic book author and feminist historian, has died - The comic artist passed away at 85 years old."le Monde

2025 box office will be "roaring hot"The Wrap

This is hard to parse: box office in 2024 is supposedly performing at 25% below "normal," how can 2025 be projected to be "hot?"

But we're still early into 2024 and some big hits could certainly change the picture. A few "big" films can have an enormous impact (see Barbie and Oppenhiemer from last year) and that's certainly where Hollywood has put its hopes now that streaming is fizzling out and subscription numbers are dropping on the major platforms as the economy in general tightens up and discretionary spending shrinks.

For more gloom, there's this story from last month "Hollywood Contraction Hits Entertainment Executive Jobs: "This Is A Full-Scale Depression"" (Deadline Hollywood).

Rock band Rush gets a comic book historyYahoo

The Ramona Fradon tribute at DCBleedingcool

More Ramona Fradon

Japan dominates the American Comic Book marketWestern Journal

According to industry data, translated Japanese manga now far outsell American superhero comics, as giants like Marvel and DC increasingly push storylines that feature hyper-progressive tropes at the expense of entertainment. Last year, Publisher's Weekly found that 45 percent of all graphic novel sales in 2022 went to Manga, up from 44 percent a year before. Compared to that, the superhero genre held steady at 14 percent.

"‘Most important’ comic book ever sells for record $6M" – Cleveland Plain Dealer MSN

Mainstream media seems to like the twin subjects of high auction prices and superheroes, and a super-rare copy of a high grade Action Comics #1 certainly brings those two things together.

Related: The seven comic books that have sold for the most – The National

April's biggest comic book releasesIGN

Batman theme restaurant in London has closedThe Caterer

The death of Ed Piskor continues to spread around online news mediaYahoo News -

"...complicated circumstances."

AMAZON - JLA 1 Paperback - 616 Pages - by Grant Morrison, Mark Millar, Brian Augustyn, Tom Peyer, Todd Dezago Amazon

DC Comics presents the legendary 1990s series, collected for the first time with all accompanying JLA mini-series and one-shots! Experience the complete epic, launched by Grant Morrison and Howard Porter, that changed the DC Universe forever.

Liefeld writing a memoir titled Robservations, which BenBella Publishing to come out next yearHollywood Reporter

The book chronicles Liefeld's rise from the son of a preacher in Orange County, Calif. to becoming a rising star at Marvel in the early 1990s, when his work on titles such as X-Force set sales records. He then went on to help disrupt the industry as one of the founders of Image Comics, which launched in 1992 with the premise that comic book creators could retain the rights to their work. In recent decades, Deadpool has become one of the biggest comic book characters in the world thanks to the films starring Ryan Reynolds.

Girl Rebels title coming from TitanBleedingcool – celebrity news figures featured like Greta Thunberg, Malala Yousafzai, Yusra Mardini, Emma ‘X’ Gonzalez, and Melati and Isabel Wijsen.

Silver Surfer movie announcement: she's a girlGQ

But will Galactus be a girl, too?

UPDATE: Sold for $6 Million "All Time Sales Record"

Action Comics #1 CGC 8.5 rating being auctioned

Now at $4.3 million with 2 hours left of bidding:  CGC 8.5 Action Comics #1 at Heritage

This weekend's DC Comics Free Detective Comics #27 85th anniversary edition already being sold on eBayBleedingcool

Michael Keaton and Jack Nicholson and the Batman workout routinePeople

Madame Web The Movie

The debacle at the box office around Madame Web transcended the instance of just another superhero film flopping, instead it has become a kind of marker for a whole year of superhero flops that culminated in Madame Web's critical (and box office) drubbing.

More about Madame Web, 2024

"Madame Web Is Hilariously Short Of A Box Office Milestone, Adding Insult To Injury"MSN /Film

Article laments (or is it mocking?) that Madame Web has stalled at $99,312,851 for international box office.

More about Madame Web, 2024

The Yellow M getting a live action film adaptationYahoo

The Yellow M (La Marque Jaune) was first serialized in Tintin magazine in 1953. The first standalone album was in 1956. The stories feature the adventures of British detective Francis Blake and his friend, Professor Philip Mortimer. The term "Yellow M" refers to a criminal the pair are hunting who is called the "Yellow Mark."

The series is by Edgar P. Jacobs, a Belgian who also produced Blake and Mortimer.

If I ask Chat GPT about the series, it says back: "It has been praised as one of the classic works of Franco-Belgian comics and remains popular among comic book fans worldwide. The series has been translated into numerous languages and has inspired adaptations in various media, including radio dramas and animated films."

Album of the month – but what year is it?

Album of the Month Batman at Barnes and Noble

It's the month of March but it's in 1989 at Barnes and Noble with Batman and Metallica

Skybound Entertainment expanding comic book staffingMSN Hollywood Reporter

...the multimedia company behind The Walking Dead and Invincible comics and TV series, is beefing up its editorial arm. The company has hired longtime DC Comics editor Ben Abernathy to act as executive editor. The move had been expected since Abernathy left DC in January. Blake Kobashigawa, meanwhile, joins the company from comics company IDW as senior director, business development, while Alex Hargett has been tapped as Skybound's director, brand, editorial. The company's Arune Singh has been promoted to vp, brand, editorial."

2023 box office numbers show that video game movie adaptations are pushing the superhero genre out of the number one genre spotForbes

Black Cat Comics in Utah holding fund raiser for cartoonist battling cancerKSL.COM

Comic book fans in Salt Lake City organized the effort.

Comic book artist Tim Odland, a Utah native, was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic lung cancer in late 2023. Black Cat Comics, a comic book store in Sugar House, held a fundraiser Saturday to help Odland with medical expenses.

"It’s a Brutal Time to Be a TV Writer"MSN Hollywood Reporter

The end of Peak TV has ushered in an era of contraction, with fewer buyers (farewell, The CW) and fierce competition for the few shows that are staffing: "People are in total survival mode."

Ed Piskor commits suicide

Accusations are flying around the internet, and some are saying a band of people organized a lynch mob to destroy the guys career, and in result he slew himself, but not before writing out a detailed suicide note which contains a heavy list of his own accusations and explanations here.

 I was murdered by Internet bullies. Massive amounts of them. Some of you out there absolutely contributed to my death as you were entertaining yourself with gossip."

"Ed Piskor, 'Hip Hop Family Tree' Comic Book Artist, Dies at 41"MSN The Wrap

Very first Batman anniversary edition to be given out free in New York CityYahoo - WPIX

Jim Lee "AI robs artists of creative joy"

Question: Is there too much violence in comics?

Jim Lee: There's some truth to that. It can be a shortcut to have them physically duke it out to resolve a crisis and I'm not sure that's the proper lesson you want readers to walk away with.

Question: Is AI a threat to the comics industry?

Jim Lee: We have to figure out a way to live in a world where it exists, and the source material from which it derives its content is properly credited and compensated.

Interview at AFP MSN

Comic Book Brain: Considering how tech companies use "clean rooms" to prove they're not just lifting code from other tech companies to power new programs they write, why can't AI companies be forced to "clean room" what they're "educating" their AI with, only using properly licensed work and having records that can stand up to an audit showing they're either using public domain works or using, as Jim Lee says, compensated artists who are in agreement with what the AI is doing as it utilizes their work.

Right now there are court cases in which artists are trying to demonstrate that an AI engine is imitating their work, that it was presumably "educated" using their work (without permission) and this is clearly a copyright violation. How these kind of cases are decided will set the stage for what happens next in the commercial visual arts.

This situation has existed before in the past: before international copyright laws existed, for example, the written works of Charles Dickens would be published with copyright protection in Britain, but would be immediately, and without permission, reprinted in the Untied States without any compensation or permission. In effect, in America, Dickens was competing against himself with legally printed volumes of his stories being published but up against cheaper "knock-off" versions that he was powerless to prevent.

Unchecked, AI will destroy many livelihoods and shift payments from the original creative person over to companies that are imitating the creative using the precision possible in computer calculation, and selling the imitation to people and businesses who don't know and can't understand the difference.

Also, if unchecked, likely is that particularly creative programmers will come up with ways to sabotage AI from the ground level, where the "data" is being fed into the AI during it's "education," though that seems dubious a word choice, since AI, at least in the visual arts, looks more like an ingenious visual synthesizer, being "creative' through the happenstance of controlled combinations which are guided by AI programmers.

Crook steals coloring books and some free comics

Comic book store "bouncing back" after slightly ludicrous smash-and-grab robberyFox47news

With the recent robbery at Summit Comics last week in Lansing, it begs the question: What is it about comic book stores? Kelly answered, "Comic books is a big to-do nowadays with all the movies and TV shows, so a lot of people think there's a lot of value and worth in these things. There is, but we're still selling your basic stuff like your coloring books and comic books and graphic novels."

With that being said, Kelly believes that it wasn't the valuable memorabilia that lured this thief in. According to Kelly, the suspect didn't take more than $100 worth of merchandise. With his visit being about a minute long, he managed to take some free comics, sale-priced mystery books, and coloring books.

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Original page April 9, 2024