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by Teresa Jusino

23 Jul 2009

As I mentioned in my last post, I attended Wizard World Philly 2009 to volunteer at the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund table.  So, I thought I’d tell you a little about that organization and why I chose to support it in this way (other than I didn’t have the resources to give money myself).

Since 1986, the CBLDF has been working to protect the First Amendment within the comic book industry.  Historically, comics have been associated with youth.  Even as they have become mainstream and more adults are reading them, they remain an easy target for people who would censor a writer’s work, because it’s one of the few industries in which it’s still easy to do so in the name of the children.

As a writer, I understand how important it is to be allowed to express yourself in a way that makes your story successful, or allows non-fiction to get your point across.  As an adult comic fan, I want to be allowed the choice to read what I want and when, and I firmly believe that it is up to parents to keep objectionable material away from their children.  More than that, I think that parents should be willing and prepared to discuss objectionable material with their children.  Children armed with information are less vulnerable than those who are not.

So, I spent two days shilling a variety of signed collectibles for a good cause.  Creators like Neil Gaiman, Brian K. Vaughan, and Frank Miller all donated books.  Artists like Jeff Smith, Amanda Conner, and Matt Wagner donated prints.  Then there were unique items exclusive to the CBLDF, like the fragrances inspired by Neil Gaiman’s novels!  All of these items are also available at their website.  Visit www.cbldf.org.

I’ll leave you with a word from Neil Gaiman, who provides a unique perspective regarding the First Amendment:

by PopMatters Staff

23 Jul 2009

The Pastels / Tenniscoats
Two Sunsets
(Geographic/Domino)
Releasing: 22 September 7 (UK) / 22 September (US)

SONG LIST
01 So Many Stars
02 Two Sunsets
03 Song for a Friend
04 Vivid Youth
05 Yomigaeru
06 Modesty Piece
07 About You
08 Boats
09 Hikoki
10 From on a Mountain Sodane
11 Mou Mou Rainbow
12 Start Slowly

The Pastels / Tenniscoats
“About You” [MP3]
     

by shathley Q

23 Jul 2009

Two men of very different destinies. Artist Craig Hamilton makes a compelling visual statement about writer James Robinson’s project of an art deco city in comics evolving from the lives of great men.

For writer James Robinson, the dream of an art deco comics has been a long, slow project. By issue 54 of Starman it had taken nearly five years. Winding its way through a passing exchange between characters, and on to being visualized by the series’ regular artists, Starman’s home of Opal eventually became as much a character as any other. But it is with issue 54, and with guest illustrator Hamilton, that the art deco theme finally transcends the visualization of Opal and influences the medium of comics itself. Ironically, issue 54 is set in the nineteenth century, long before the art deco movement properly took hold.

Hamilton depicts two men whose contribution to Opal live on for longer than a century. In doing so he opposes their individual characters, but also the fabric of the city’s life.

To the left is legendary blood-and-guts lawman, Sheriff Brian Savage, the Scalphunter. To the right stands Herman Moll reclusive (and by the close of the twentieth century, little-remembered) visionary, the fictive inventor of the first spaceship. Contrasted as looking down on their achievements, both remain unaware of the full impact they will have on the future of Opal.

The vibrancy and warmth of the palette used to depict Savage in the Chinese parlor differs sharply from the cold, clinical hues of Moll’s hangar. Yet for all its warmth, Savage’s world will require of Opal defenders prepared to spill blood. While for all the apparent cold of Moll’s panel, it is his work that will nurture the dreams of Ted Knight, the first Starman and provide Jack Knight a means to the stars.

by PopMatters Staff

23 Jul 2009

Animal Collective released Merriweather Post Pavilion to near universal acclaim earlier this year and are on track to do very well indeed in year-end top albums lists of many publications, including this one. They chat with Noisevox about the success of the album and much more.

More videos from the Animal Collective series…

by PopMatters Staff

23 Jul 2009

The Thermals kicked off the brand new Noisevox site this June with four live tunes and a set of interviews.

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