Friday, September 10, 2004

"It means cow in hebrew," he said.

Jessa at Bookslut read a recent review/round up of new graphic novels in the Baltimore Sun, and despaired. I, on the other hand, found myself almost enjoying it -- there's a certain sort of journalism, in which people who know actually nothing whatsoever about a subject pontificate about it in a way that gets absolutely everything utterly wrong, and which becomes increasingly funny the more of it you read. The amazing spelling mistakes the author of the piece commits on people's names -- Windsor McCay, Joe Kulbert -- only add to the suspicion that it was written while drunk or a long way from the source material, while the sentences, on a word-by-word basis often hover at the edge of sense without ever actually getting there.

And even while he's praising things, the author seems to be putting his foot in his mouth. How many simple errors can you count in the following paragraph?

Lastly, two books from the great artist Joe Kulbert show he is still going strong. The first is a compendium of his Sgt. Rock stories. Kulbert has drawn the gruff old master sergeant for years, and his bold authoritative line matches the mood of the war tales. The pages of Between Hell and a Hard Place, from Vertigo Books, practically jump with action during the battles. But Kulbert can write, too, a fact obscured by his first skill. Yossel: April 19, 1943 is a tale of the Warsaw Uprising, a masterpiece drawn in pencil on a gray background with such commanding graphic talent, such knowledge of anatomy, architecture, and action, that it puts the rest of us to flight. There is no doubt that the Holocaust has been nearly exhausted as a subject, but this treatment brings it alive.

The article is here but you'll need a bugmenot id to get into it, if you're curious.


Those of you with memories like particularly sharp elephants will remember that last month, I talked a little about the next project from Alan Moore and his collaborators, in which we will see the return of many of the old IPC characters. I don't know if this will mean much to anyone who isn't a) British and b) of the right kind of age. Nor do I know if Dare-A-Day-Davy will actually be coming back. But I do know just how much I am looking forward to it...

Shane Oakley is drawing it (many, many years ago, Shane drew a story I wrote called THE GREAT COOL CHALLENGE for a magazine called BLAAM! [er, I think] and is a really good guy) and Leah Moore and John Reppion are writing it. Alan is plotting the stories and overseeing the results.

It's called ALBION.

Now, Leah Moore is one of the few people in this world who I sort of figure has a perfect right to call me Unca Neil, given that I've known her (and her sister Amber) since back when she was still in single digits. (And she does.) She wrote to me today to let me know that she and John now have a website up, filled with useful information about Albion, and also about Wild Girl, their new Wildstorm comic.

If you head over to and click around a bit, you'll help to make John and Leah feel loved, and you'll be in on the very beginning of something fun. Then when Albion comes out you can be the one explaining the significance of Fatty and the Nervs to those around you.


This isn't a question. *g* I just wanted to say that I enjoyed "meeting" you this weekend at World Con (well, getting an autograph anyway - lol) and that you did a fantastic job as MC for the Hugo Awards! This way my first World Con and previously I didn't know such a convention existed! (I'm fairly new to the convention fandom phenomenon though I've been a fan of science fiction and fantasy since I was a young child.)Congratulations on your Hugo!
Sincerely,Danielle Cormier

You're very welcome. It's always an adventure heading off to your first Worldcon (or your first SF or Fantasy or Comics or Anime convention) and, for most people, it's a pretty good adventure. Next year, the Worldcon will be in Glasgow, where articles even stupider than the one mentioned above have already started to appear...

(Well, one article anyway. It's possible that it's meant to be humour, only the author hasn't figured out the whole being funny thing yet.)

Anyway. I mention this because, instead of commissioning an artist to design the Hugo base (which is a different design every year -- there are a few examples at the base design is an open competition. So if you -- wherever you are in the world -- want to see the winning artists and writers carrying around their Hugos on your base, check out the competition details at


A few people have written to let me know that there's some kind of Mirrormask trailer on the DVD release of Jim Henson's STORYTELLER, by the way. I'll post more information when I get it from Hensons.