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Monday, Sep 23, 2013
Coming a week after the release of the first Unwritten standalone graphic novel, Unwritten #53 proves that there's always something magic.

Think of what it must have been like for those creators taking the very first steps into the brave new format of the graphic novel. Not Will Eisner who’s generally acknowledged as the progenitor of the format, but a little later on, think of Chris Claremont and Brett Anderson, writer and artist respectively on the X-Men graphic novel, God Loves, Man Kills which would eventually become the basis for the 2003 hit, X2: X-Men United.


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Monday, Sep 16, 2013
Brother Lono takes the core of the original 100 Bullets, that sense of the panopticon for human interest, arising from the margins of society, and elevates it beyond what seemed possible.

Maybe NYPD Blue did it best, in those days Back When. At least Blue did it better than Homicide: Life on the Streets, when the two seemed in competition for the gritty-realism-brought-to-TV crown. It was that sense of the panoramic, but a panorama forced outwards to the edge of the scene. Each crime scene the intrepid detectives from the 15th found themselves investigating would be subjected to a panning shot, and usually thereafter a tracking shot or two to follow the detectives thru the same scene. Certain things would always hit. The old lady in her robe and slippers smoking, or maybe the Korean bodega owner, or maybe the homeless guy with the shiny, new watch.


It was a visually evocative, and ultimately, a beautiful way to tell a story. And in the Fall of 92, and for nearly every year later for a decade, it became a wonderfully elegiac way to shot New York, one that infused the TV show with that quintessential urban energy of the place itself. In the thousands of scenes that comprise the entire 12 seasons of NYPD Blue, the map and the territory become one.


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Friday, Sep 13, 2013
We've got Marshall McLuhan to thank for reminding us that the medium is the message. But what happens when the mode of production for the medium changes? Comics mavens have been trying to answer this question since the '90s, perhaps none more diligently than Top Shelf publisher, Chris Staros.

Here’s one of those crime scenes I return to frequently:


In Graphic Storytelling & Visual Narrative that Eisner is at his most seductive. Bemoaning the loss of daily news strip comics, Eisner suggests, “There is a major structural difference between newspaper storytelling strips and comic books. In comic books, stories come to a definite conclusion, a tradition that began when the early comic books advertised that each story was complete. A book is free-standing whereas newspapers are connected to the pattern of daily life. In a daily continuity, therefore, the storyteller need only segue into the next adventure. [Milton] Caniff understood that the story had to emulate the seamless flow of life’s experiences and that the human adventure doesn’t have neat endings. His work shows us how to tell a story that could make itself part of the reader’s daily life”.


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Friday, Aug 30, 2013
It's hard to read Trillium, to read Jeff Lemire and not think of dangers Beethoven faced during his early life, when those dangers may stolen him away, long before anyone ever knew to speak his name.

EXCLUSIVE PREVIEW


For WZW, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. never said “I have a plan…”


Could Beethoven, even in his deafness, have retained the memory of perfect pitch? Could his music be nothing more than the rigorous working out of an abstract calculus? A working out on a scale of genius far beyond any of us?


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Tuesday, Aug 27, 2013
On August 22, 2013 the press (and internet) swarmed and brimmed with Warner Bros' news surrounding the casting of Batman in the upcoming Man of Steel sequel. The overall internet consensus? Overwhelming negativity. Why? The actor they chose is Ben Affleck.

It was the day before my 39th birthday and I was doing what I do most every night… sitting in the tree in my back yard eating pomegranates drinking Argentinian Malbec (trust me, there is NOTHING like an Argentinian) and surfing Facebook. That’s when I saw a link that I was quite sure would lead to an article on The Onion. The story it led to announced the hilarious prospect that Christian Bale’s successor as Batman would be none other than Shannon from Mallrats: Ben Affleck. I laughed out loud until I realized this wasn’t The Onion, this was The Hollywood Reporter.


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