Recent Features
The Beats, The Li’l Depressed Boy and Populist Literature

I’m reminded of the Beats’ desire to bring common language to fiction and poetry thanks to a few recently read comics including Ethan Rilly’s Pope Hats, Adrian Tomine’s Optic Nerve and especially S. Steven Struble and Sina Grace’s The Li’l Depressed Boy #15

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Rethinking the Narrative: An Exclusive Conversation with Dr. Walter Greason

The debate over sexism and Eurocentrism in superhero comics simmers constantly, an easy charge for cultural critics and fans alike. Yet, the fact that superhero comicbook struggles with questions of race and gender bias should not be a surprise.

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No Reason to End: “Star Wars” and Perpetual Fiction

What's the value of Brian Wood writing an interstitial Star Wars tale (between A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back), nearly 40 years on? Perhaps more than we can realize…

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The Long Game: Exclusive Interview with “Fables” Creator Bill Willingham

Legendary Fables creator Bill Willingham rarely grants interviews, but in this exclusive he wrestles with the Long Game of comics after Watchmen and with his own creation…

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Horror, Pro Wrestling and Batman, Revisited

The Joker, as written by Snyder, is much more of a horror character. His methods and mayhem far more influenced by recent horror movies than his previous pulp villain roots. It’s a trend. A trend that as Batman #16 illustrates, shows a “torture porn” influence that we’ve seen in the Saw movies and other imitators.

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The Conscious Materiality of Chris Ware’s Building Stories

If the digital ereader has made anything clear, it's that the physicality of the book is, for most practical purposes, incidental, an accident of time and place. Building Stories, by contrast, is deliberately material in a way that most books are not.

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In the Chained Melody of Spider-Man

What’s lost in the circus atmosphere of the new Superior Spider-Man is what critics should be picking up on: is this a good direction for the Wall-crawler, are the comics in question good, and what does this all mean in the larger picture of comics and popculture?

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Clown Behind the Cowl, Wind Beneath My Wings: The Scott Snyder Exclusive

"For a moment I imagine that scary Go-To-Bed Clown that used to appear at your window, each night as you tried to fall sleep. But talking about the sheer masterfulness of the Joker's creation isn't the scary thing in this interview. The scary thing is Scott himself…"

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The Chain of Damocles

Django Unchained is quite possibly the finest example of an adapted-from-film comicbook, except of course, it's really not, not entirely…

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Second Star to the Right… The Contextual Usage of “Fan Fiction”

Earlier on in the Batman storyarc "Death of the Family", we were introduced to the idea of the Joker as court jester, but this obfuscates seeing him for what he is: Peter Pan…

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The Best Comic Book Moments in 2012 Movies

The comic book movie boom we've been riding for a little over a decade now has shown no signs of going bust. If anything, the boom is only getting bigger and more comic-bookish.

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Doomsday Island Discs: The PopMatters Comics 2012 Wrap

PopMatters Comics Editor Shathley Q and Associate Editor Michael D. Stewart didn't get to talking about everything…only the things they connected with emotionally, and the ideas that these things brought them into…Here it is, your view of comics, superheroes and transmedia…Enjoy it in good health, this Mayan Doomsday…

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Dream a Little Dream: Amazing Spider-Man and ‘Dying Wish’

It's not right on the cusp of Amazing Spider-Man #700, writer Dan Slott takes us back to 80s body-swap comedies, or even that those comedies have a pedigree in Gilded Age satire…it's what pushing Spidey into those genre do to the hero's characterization…

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Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, Finally: A Hard Look at “Avengers #1”

After the success of Joss Whedon's summer blockbuster the Avengers, there needs to be a title that captures the essence of the movies while retaining the force and the intricacies of the comicbooks. Jonathan Hickman's Avengers is that series.

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Humble Beginnings: Ed Brubaker’s “Scene of the Crime”

In some sense, Scene of the Crime birthed the universe of grifters, drug runners, and unlucky bar flies that help make Ed Brubaker's books what they are…

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Black Friday Boogie: The Exclusive with “Filmation Generation’s” Andy Mangels

It's the kind of conversation that can only play out on Black Friday, sequel to what this year became know as Black Thursday, the day we used to call Thanksgiving…

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Yours Is the Cloth, Mine’s the Hand That Sews Time: DC’s ‘Throne of Atlantis’

In "Throne of Atlantis", the crossover that spans both Justice League and Aquaman, writer and DC Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns sees the culmination of a theme decades in the making. Enjoy a sneak preview…

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What’s Lost in Translation When Print Comics Are Digitized?

Be they in analog or digital form, the struggle between art and commerce in comics presses on.

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Then and Noir: Valiant’s Reclaiming of Shadowman, and of the ‘90s

In the '90s, Valiant set the bar for comics very high by blending together modern art and characterization with storytelling modes of classic horror comics from the '70s. But did they set the bar impossibly high? Even for their own relaunch 20 years after?

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I Belong with You, You Belong with Me: New York Comic Con 2012

The soul-crushing, heartrending exuberance of a voyage through "everyone's happy place"…

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More Recent Features
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Anderson East Ignites a Fire at Mercury Lounge

// Notes from the Road

"Hot off the release of his album Delilah Anderson East's performance was full of vim and vigor.

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