Neilalien : A Doctor Strange Fansite : A Comic Book Weblog  

Urgent Call To All Dr. Strange Fans

Fred Van Lente, Secretary of the Board of MoCCA, The Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art (and writer of Action Philosophers and The Silencers) emails:

I'm curating MoCCA's big opening fall show, TOON TOWN: COMIC AND CARTOON ART IN NEW YORK CITY which is all about how cartoonists were inspired by New York, and vice-versa. We have a whole section on "Marvel's New York". I'd LOVE an original piece of art depicting Dr. Strange's Sanctum Sanctorum. Key would be Ditko, of course, but I'm interested in anything depicting the Doc's digs. The show opens October 6 and we're looking to get the pieces in-house in the next couple weeks.

So Neilalienistas, is there anyone out there with some original art of the Sanctum Sanctorum building that can be part of a great show and cause? Email this website or Fred directly at fvanlente AT

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Great Dr. Strange sketch by Johnny Bacardi [Johnny B's Sketch Blog]

Doc sketch by Johnny Bacardi

Funny post about how Upper Deck's Marvel Trading Card Game isn't focusing on the right doctor: Dr. Strange! []

Stan Lee teaming up with ibooks and Komikwerks for Sunday Comics, new comics website [Newsarama] [Pulse]
$5 a month. Big name creators. And a new weekly Stan's Soapbox column.

Stan Lee's Alexa: graphic novel coming in February [ICv2]
Steranko's involved too.

The eyes deceive! The last three issues of JMS' Rising Stars are scheduled for release [Newsarama]
After such a long delay, sales are likely horked.

Feeling guilty about discounts: Do comics consumers have a responsibility to help out the retailer with that mortgage, or do they have the capitalist Walmart right to get the cheapest comics they can? [Otto's Coffee Shop]

Dr. Frederic Wertham's Seduction of the Innocent back in print [Egon reports]

From Newsarama's Grant Morrison interview about his big-time return to the DC Universe:

Aquaman has no beard and John Stewart is Green Lantern so it's pretty much set in some kind of current continuity but I'm afraid it's not the gloomy 'adult' world of Sue Dibny's shredded lycra pants so keep well away if it's attempted rape you crave. Cannibalism, yes, rape, no. My DCU is a day-glo, non-stop funhouse, where the world is threatened every five minutes and godlike beings clash in the skies like fireworks.

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Brian Michael Bendis has suspended his message board; a small group of posters there had apparently burned their Human Civilization membership cards and kept a disgusting list (even if 'just joking') of onlinecomicsphere women they planned to rape at Wizard World Chicago [Post-Crisis via Heaping Plateful] [Fanboy Rampage (and scroll up)] [Bendis on Newsarama] [Millarworld]

Posted 28 July 02004 - Permalink

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Four interior pages from September's Strange #1 [Newsarama]

The cover of Strange #2 [Comics Continuum]

Cup 'O Joe (Quesada) panel in San Diego: If Strange is successful, more Dr. Strange is coming [Newsarama]

Doc Marvel Legends figure Dr. Strange to be included in the next wave of Marvel Legends figures? [image at] [thanks readers!]

"Jack Black is the Green Lantern. Photoshop other celebs who are dead-ass wrong for a superhero role" [Fark] [direct link to Peter Sellers as Dr. Strange (not Dr. Strangelove)] [via MemeMachineGo]

Superbeing and Time [John & Belle Have A Blog]
Superheroes work best when they, by overlapping childhood and adulthood via their tropes/crippling man-child limitations, evoke nostalgia for lost innocence and wistfulness for the child's crystallizing world and the "pain of unachieved adulthood contending with hope for redeemed childish innocence". And it's something both Chabon and Ware have done: to contrast them (as the recent McGrath New York Times Magazine piece does) misses the basis of literary comparison.

Crisis on Infantile Earths- or- If it's Tuesday, it must be Ragnarok! [John & Belle Have A Blog]
The "picaresque bricolage", the lack of change or progress in the episodic repetition, the lack of effectiveness against endless crime, the status quo or powers that be- all a deep, structural challenge for superhero stories and their continuity. Also: injecting adult themes into superhero stories doesn't lead to realism but to a sick simulacrum of realism. Or turn the nondebuggable-by-continuity-cops bugs into features, and be equivocal towards the straight cape book, instead of doing parody or deconstruction.

Comic-book sounds and noises: How do they translate? Need an accepted term for the study of phonologized renderings of non-speech noises and their cultural dimensions [Language Log]

Follow-up: The August 02004 issue of Harper's has a nice little essay by Wyatt Mason called "Flying Up and Flying Down: The rise and fall of the American superhero" which reviews Give Our Regards to the Atomsmashers!, Arlen Schumer's The Silver Age of Comic Book Art, and Mythology. The piece includes a small image from the comics of Dr. Strange in his Sanctum Sanctorum by Ditko! Neilalien couldn't find "Razor Magazine" though, which allegedly has a Stan Lee piece.

Posted 25 July 02004 - Permalink

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The 02004 San Diego Comic-Con International is this weekend [huge news index at Comic Book Resources (combined with Newsarama)]
Have fun everyone! Don't listen to any fuddy-duds calling it a "nerd prom". This is usually a quiet time for Neilalien, but he'll be watching for Dr. Strange news.

Comics up in June 15% year-to-year, fourth month in a row [ICv2]

Marvel publisher Dan Buckley: "The biggest challenge in our industry is to keep consumers and retailers interested in the mid-level books" [interviewed at Newsarama]
And reeling in the 'collectors and completists' with variant covers.

Marv Wolfman and George Perez saved DC; Ditko saved Marvel [Permanent Damage]

Great stuff: Comic industry insider Joey Manley ;) on TPB's of the webcomics on his sites [ Message Board]

Totally hilarious and lame 70's commercial for Mego superhero action figures [Retrocrush (click on Captain America screenshot for MPG)] [via Brill Building]
The Falcon is BLACK. And Mr. Fantastic has the power of invisibility.

Alan Moore interview: The man who invented the future [ (free day pass if you watch a commercial- worth it!)]

Making Comics will be Scott McCloud's new book []

Matt Fraction and Joe Casey starting new column called The Basement Tapes [Comic Book Resources] [via The Intermittent]
You might remember Fraction's writings at Savant and previous Poplife column at CBR, all of which was basically a blustery blowjob for the snob camp. That is until the late weeks, when in an epiphany of rationality, decided that comics activism in its current form is a nude emperor and what comics need is a bit of a facelift and a new press agent and that the mainstream of comics should be trashy, should be fun. Neilalien loved it! ;) So which Fraction will we get this time round? This quote holds some promise (as do many others, as does Joe Casey's involvement), so Neilalien will be reading:

We both miss that kind of critical eye that TCJ used to really shine on the mainstream; just because it might be a trashy culture doesn't mean it doesn't deserve some kind of serious thinking applied to it.

Why do we crave continuity? [CBC News Viewpoint] [via Franklin's Findings]

The latino press is very interested in that new Marvel book Amazing Fantasy with its strong latino female lead [ICv2]

Neilalien's off to see Devo, with Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Stellastarr* at the Central Park Summerstage tonight in the rain. Seeing Devo live is a Life To Do List item Neilalien never thought he'd be able to cross off as Complete. They last played NYC in 01989. See you there! Iggy and the Stooges and New York Dolls (hopefully; damn, who's still alive?) in three weeks!

Posted 23 July 02004 - Permalink

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Great mini-rant re: the changed personalities, ethnicities, sexual preferences, etc. of the ladies of Witches [Polite Dissent]

Marvel suing Disney: not enough wub for Hulk and Spidey while Disney and ABC Family promoted their own programming [Newsarama] [Reuters via Yahoo Finance] [ICv2]

How a Meek Comic Book Company Became a Hollywood Superpower [New York Times] [via Franklin's Findings]
This item's about the suits who got the film deals renegotiated and the licensing off the ground. Little mention of publishing, Quesada, Jemas, etc.- doubling publishing in four years from $10 million a quarter to $20 million just can't compare.

Pop culture, pulp fiction: Comic books riding a wave of mainstream popularity [The Daily Camera via Franklin's Findings]

Spider-Man line spins links to faiths [The Indianapolis Star via Franklin's Findings with the link trifecta of the day]

Christians hear an echo of Stan Lee's line in the Book of Luke: "From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required, and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded."

(The verse quoted here is Luke 12:47-48, prescribing how servants should be beaten for not knowing or acting in accord with their master's desires. Yeah, that fits.)

Spider-Man: Every generation's favourite superhero [The Independent] [via LinkMachineGo]

Animated The Avengers will be first release of the made-for-DVD agreement between Marvel and Lion's Gate [press release on Yahoo Finance]

Neat comic shop demographics info; Marvel, DC doing zippo to attract new readers with them cussing superheroes [Postmodernbarney]

The ridiculous rape and murder and misogyny and lobotomy of DC's BIG EVENT BOOK Identity Crisis examined [Ninth Art] [The Hurting via ADDTF] [numbing awfulness]
With little interest in the DC Universe, Neilalien passed on the book. He's glad he did at the moment.
Updates/Equal Time: Chris Allen asks, "What's the hubbub?" [Comic Book Galaxy]
A total lack of perspective in the responses; it's not for kids; Sue Dibny's strength; something bad's gotta happen to someone in a mystery [Postmodernbarney]

Posted 19 July 02004 - Permalink

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Eightball #23 Daniel Clowes' Eightball #23 "The Death-Ray" is awesome. Every bit the technical story-telling masterpiece of #22's "Ice Haven". Likely Neilalien's Book of the Year, as #22 was. Neilalienistas, go get it and read it.

There are some challenges out there for people to discuss the book. One would hope that these were honest calls to explore a profoundly wonderful piece of sequential art, of superhero conventions and assumptions, and a flat-out scary story- but there's just too much gigglin' and smirkin' and double-dog-darin' and chest-thumpin' by the challengers for Neilalien's tastes.

And heck, it's so much less intimidating to respond to a review of the book rather than review the book itself... :)

Alan David Doane's review of the book has some smart technical observations. But geez, it's so mired in looking at the book through the altcomix anti-sooperdoop-fanboy confrontational prism. The intelligence-level of the review is weakened, like the melting edge of an ice-shiv of shit. Neilalien just can't seem to leave this baited line of ADD's alone:

Clowes fully mines the possibilities inherent in his profound understanding of the psychopathology of the vast majority of American superhero comics readers- he is the master of the arctic shit-knife that is a keen insight into the "tropes," the traditional ways of presenting American superhero comics.

Hoped for a moment that ADD was simply saying that Clowes has expertly tapped into how most people enjoy the presentation of their comics, with the oversized book making one feel like a kid again, the sound effects, etc. But the hope is long dashed when you reach the 'This is the superhero crap they want (to paraphrase Warren Ellis)? Well then Here It Is STAB' rhetoric.

See that first part of the above quote? Clowes isn't speaking to the inherent mindfuck that is currently American society or self-justified American power. He isn't even speaking to the psychopathology of American superhero comics stories (or American hero myths, like our fucked-up children's songs and fairy tales with their down-will-come-baby and witches eating children). This story isn't about youth or insane irresponsible people getting super powers or wishes fulfilled. He's certainly not using the superhero genre and its tropes brilliantly and subversively, to show the near-real-world-impossibility of finding a crime in progress to stop, crimes by obvious 100% villains or stopped by obvious 100% good guys, or to convey the same-old altcomix misanthropy. No- it's claimed here by ADD that Clowes is speaking to the psychoticness of the superhero comic reader. Why are we talking about the superhero reader? Clowes' intentions are unknown to Neilalien, but one wistfully hopes ADD is wrong and not basically insulting Clowes by claiming that the fish Clowes wants to fry isn't any bigger than the smackdown of Newsarama message board posters. This is snob-camp bullshit! Superhero readers don't have a unique and general psychopathology. As if superhero readers are more likely to become serial killers; as if they walk around so pubescent and powerless, wishing they could zap unpleasant people out of existence any more than anyone else!? Can't the snob-camp comment on superheroes at all without commenting on the readers too? This snob-camp obsession with the superhero reader's inner psychological states, their alleged inability to tell fantasy from reality, their alleged inability to comprehend that in 'real life' the first thing spider-powered Peter Parker probably would have done was kill Flash Thompson, their alleged inability to enjoy the deconstruction of superheroes without feeling personally threatened!- it's all so strange, fascinating and tiring as hell. Can Eightball #23 be quickly rescued from this kind of simplistic "lovenote to the comicsnob" analysis? Neilalien thinks these "challenges" (praise the book! admit it makes you look stupid, fanboy!) silence discussion, not promote it.

What renders ADD's snob-camp validative discovery of a Reaction to Superheroes and Their Mouth-Breathing Readers in Eightball #23 (and's frontin' about how 'the unwashed masses' (i.e. one assumes superhero enjoyers, 'apologists', the soft pasty minds at FourthRail, etc.) will respond to the 'vicious deconstruction of adolescent male power fantasies') even lamer is last month's Seth interview at Bookslut, where he opines that there is less Reaction now than ever!:

I also think cartoonists, in general, are becoming less uptight about all the genre stuff. We've created more distance between what we are doing and what the mainstream guys are up to (certainly a lot more than back in the 80's) and so we are less concerned about reacting against it. Dan Clowes is using a super hero in his next comic- I think that is a sign that we don't really feel any reaction against that stuff anymore. A superhero is just another symbol to be used now. Ten years ago it was a more charged issue.

Ten years ago, fellas. Stop living in the past. And then maybe Neilalien can stop living in the yet-another-quick-defensive-of-the-superhero-enjoyer past too.

Update: Attentiondeficitdisorderly has a humungous linkfest that includes a wonderful crystallization of Neilalien's gist here

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Update: Storage space for Eightball #23 reviews/comments: [The Onion A.V. Club] [Ninth Art] [Unqualified Offerings]

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Update 02006: Eightball #23 "The Death-Ray" is to Spider-Man as Lord of the Flies is to The Coral Island?

Posted 16 July 02004 - Permalink

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Dr. Strange's residence included in the Bleecker Street page on New York Songlines (scroll down a smidge to 177A Bleecker Street at MacDougal Street) [link submitted by Out of the Darkling Wood]
Songlines is a great site for sauntering down NYC streets in cyberspace, if you can't in meatspace.

Great essay of praise for Gruenwald's Quasar [The Hurting]

Sorry, Hoary Host, Warren Ellis' upcoming Ultimate Nightmare isn't about the Doc Strange villain [preview; discussion]

Thanator reports that this month's Razor Magazine has a nice profile on Stan Lee and his contributions to modern culture

There aren't enough comic shops; here's some fundamentals about opening up a new one [Brian Hibbs Tilting At Windmills]

French AIDS organization creates ads depicting Superman and Wonder Woman with the disease [via Boing Boing]

Devil's Due launching a new superhero line called Aftermath [Pulse]

Posted 16 July 02004 - Permalink

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Not Funnies [massive NY Times Magazine article on artcomix graphic novels and major press hit, by Charles McGrath] [via Attentiondeficitdisorderly] [ICv2 summary]
Jamie S. Rich with a great rant against this piece: the usual Crumb-type suspects are elevated, as is the usual sexually-frustrated works, while all else dismissed [Confessions of a Pop Fan]
"Evan Dorkin once said something along the lines that all we tend to offer the world is a picture of comics as either B-movie slasher flicks or Akira Kurosawa films, ignoring the vast canyon of material inbetween."
Attentiondeficitdisorderly responds to Rich
With Friends Like These [Not The Beastmaster; follow-up]
"[McGrath] presented a much narrower and more condescending view of what comics can and should be"; be sure to get that August 02004 Harper's.
Chris Ekman discusses the article and comics' battle for cultural legitimacy [Ninth Art]
Biff, pow, yadda yadda: Corrections, improvements to the McGrath piece [Long Story Short Pier]
Update: What's Funny? Point/Counterpoint [Sequential Tart]
Comics are back [The Beat]
Eddie Campbell's Graphic Novel Manifesto [The Beat]
Toward a philosophy of the funnybook [Attentiondeficitdisorderly with ten million links and responses, and where Neilalien got a lot of these links]

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Marvel Board Authorizes $100 Million Share Repurchase Program [press release on Business Wire (Yahoo Finance)]
Guess this would be the other end of the cash-flow spectrum... The stock's been looking a little weak and insider-oversold and diluted since the split anyway. If this buyback happens (it's only been approved), it would amount to, at current prices, 5% of the company.
Marvel Plays Superhero? []

Has Jim Shooter returned to Marvel as a consultant!? [Lying In The Gutters]
That would explain Necromancy Month and other retros. Also word that Marvel considered buying CrossGen (who's at the point of cancelling people's health insurance) but balked when it saw the books.

Direct Market retailer pissed at Marvel's 50%-off subscriptions [ICv2]

Steve Ditko of Two Worlds [Franklin's Findings]
Responding to Unqualified Offerings' recent question. Ditko is capable of separating his art from his philosophy, especially in supernatural stories like Dr. Strange (which would totally offend the rationalist Objectivist mind). Also some speculation that Spidey may have taught by 'bad example'.
"There goes Stan, hammering home the irony again!" [Pop Culture Gadabout]

MoCCA expanding too quickly, losing its balance? [Publishers Weekly report on the art festival, quoted at Thought Balloons]
That was Neilalien's impression.

An interview with Larry Young [Bookslut]

What Went Wrong? [John Byrne IMO column at UGO] [via Thought Balloons]
Standard theory set: the perception of cheap, light, for-kids fare, Seduction of the Innocent, nothing except superheroes, the Direct Market- and- selling superstar creators instead of content...

Strange Adventures #156: The Man With The Head of Saturn [Progressive Ruin (cover), analysis]

"I can't believe I'm recommending a SHE HULK comic..." [Ninth Art]
It's that fun.

Alternative Comics needs Team Comix help [Newsarama]
An email appeal blames cash flow problems lingering from the LPC distributor bankruptcy. Go see if there's something you can buy. Neilalien can at least recommend past Best of MoCCA winner Titans of Finance by Josh Neufeld and R. Walker, basically anything by past Best of MoCCA winner Damon Hurd (especially My Uncle Jeff) (although he won BoM doing much different work than that), and Sam Henderson's Magic Whistle has generated many a chuckle.

Posted 13 July 02004 - Permalink

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Is comic book website Sequential Tart telling the internet to take a long walk off a short pier?

Neilalien thinks so. How?

1. With its systematic (or is that systemic?) linkrot: Neilalien just did a quickie initial dead-link survey of his website with, and just about all the ST links are dead. That's too bad, because it was pointing to some good ST content. Even links from as recent as 14 June 02004 are toast! Last month's Read This or Die column about Sleeper used to live at Now that's a standard vacuous 404 error page, and it now lives at So apparently, every month, the previous month's issue gets put into new archive URLs and all the 'first-run' links break. Is that what's happening? New URLs for Archived Content was one of Jakob Nielsen's Top Ten Web Design Mistakes of 02003, and it's a site usability disaster and flat-out bonehead move (and more work, no?). These aren't links sadly dying because a server crashed- this is linkrot that's actively created month after month. Sometimes a decent Search function can save the day, but searching "sleeper" brings up 28 hits and the article in question isn't one of them. Neilalien found the article's new URL by looking at how the archive URLs are structured and guessing. Please, one URL per page for the life of the page! Just put new/current content in its archive URLs from the start, and link to those URLs from the home page describing the current month's issue. More info: [Cool URIs don't change (W3C)] [Web Pages Must Live Forever (] [Fighting Linkrot (]

2. With its copyright page: "ST may be linked to on the condition that it is notified of any such linking. The right to refuse any such linking or to request to be removed from a web site is reserved." This is crap. Why even bother having a website or participating on the public internet, the fundamental basis of which is the hyperlink? Why is that there- what lawayer has been appeased. Well ST, if Neilalien shows up in your referrer logs, consider that "notification" (if he's in your referrer logs, it's likely under "Failed Requests" because all of your links are broken). And you certainly have the right to request that the link be removed, but according to Neilalien's own website policy and terms of use, any such request must be accompanied by $1,000 (these unenforceable things are fun!). More info: [Attention Editors: Deep Link Away (Ticketmaster court case) (Wired)] [NPR's strange linking policy (Geeknews)] [Big Stink Over a Simple Link (Wired)] [Don't Link to Us! (old site that exposed stupid linking policies to ridicule)]

Sequential Tart is a quality website that's been around a long time, and it's one of Neilalien's favorites. Hopefully the cool savvy web chicks there can clear up these issues soon.

Meanwhile, check out these un-notified ST links before the URLs change!:
Death and the Female Character: Some Thoughts on Death and the Role of Gender in Superhero Comics [Sequential Tart]
Read This or Die: Fade From Blue [Sequential Tart]

Posted 9 July 02004 - Permalink

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Hilarious and so, so wrong: Johnny Ryan's "Shouldn't You Be Working?" comic for 5 July 02004 [link submitted by Attentiondeficitdisorderly]
Warning: Dr. Strange's adventures with the 89th Dimension are NSFW. By the creator of Angry Youth Comix.

Ditko dissects Shotgun Mike [Winnipeg Sun column by John Gleeson] [via Mark Evanier]
And then all of a sudden, Steve Ditko weighs in publicly for a newspaper column about some crank in Canada with a shotgun? As Evanier notes, "I hope he got Ditko's permission to [quote personal correspondence]."

Where is Steve Ditko in Spider-Man? [Unqualified Offerings asks]
Because 'scare-quote altruism' ("With great power there must come great responsibility") is close to the First Deadly Objectivist Sin.
Mark Evanier answers: Ditko wasn't as militant; Lee politically stuck between Kirby and Ditko; Objectivists still want crime stopped; Spider-Man not as much a wimpy feet-of-clay anti-hero in the comics as perceived; the word balloons are Lee's.

"Marvel Comics Heroes" was a Double Jeopardy category recently! [Bloggity-Blog-Blog-Blog]

The SC.R.U.B.S. System (Scoring Concerning the Readabilty/Unreadabilty of Batman Storylines) [Polite Dissent]

Fewer than half of Americans over 18 now read novels, short stories, plays or poetry; the pace at which the nation is losing readers is quickening [New York Times] [via Blogdex]

The Dewey Decimal System folks are seeking help re: classifying graphic novels [OCLC Newsletter (PDF), "p. 4"] [via Egon]

Posted 9 July 02004 - Permalink

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Is a Dr. Strange figure part of Marvel Legends Series 8 or not?
A reader of this humble weblog noticed via his wishlist that Amazon's listing for the Marvel Legends Series VIII 6" figure of Dr. Strange found a couple weeks ago has changed: when before it said "No image available", it now sports a Dr. Octopus image. No listing for Series 8 yet at Toybiz. This listing at ToyGlobe still says Dr. Strange and "No picture yet". This listing at includes Classic Doc Ock and no Doc Strange! The Doc Strange figure may not be on the way after all.

Marvel stock has surrendered 16% of its value since Spider-Man 2 opened last week []
Neilalien's certainly no investing guru, but the likely reason as he sees it: The herd thought that they were buying at the bottom, or at least before a large move upward, because they bought sometime shortly before the movie came out and the big profits rolled in. But in reality, as usual, they bought at the top, after the big expected success of the movie was long ago already priced into the stock by the market powers-that-be. But it's back up almost 5% of that today.

Scary observation via Warren Ellis' Bad Signal Mailing List: Does Newsarama's look at CrossGen's bankruptcy filings suggest that only 285 comic book shops were buying CG books?

Grant Morrison: Master & Commander: interview at PopImage [Intro] [Starts here]
A must-read with too much juiciness to quote, but Neilalien will whet the appetite with two:

So far, I have fifteen black Daler notebooks filled with my own characters and company franchise revamps - hundreds of pages of drawings and stories and ideas for The Atom, Doctor Strange, Moon Knight, Iron Man, Freedom Fighters, Captain Marvel Jnr. blah blah blah.
The best way to consolidate comics as a viable medium is to make them LESS like other media, not more. Let our artists go wild on imaginative page layouts. Let our writers find stories in their dreams and not in the newspaper pages, at least for a little while again. Aim for the cool, literate 'college' audience, as Stan Lee did to great success in the 60s.

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund's involvement fighting COPA scrutinized [The Intermittent]

"I believe the Marvel Universe died the day Mark Gruenwald did, because he was the last person who really cared about it as a living, cohesive organism"; high praise for the first half of his Captain America run [The Hurting] [via Motime with more on Cap/superheroes broodin' n' fightin']
More: Interesting essay about continuity, and how its current perception by Marvel creators/editors as a problem is losing the books' signature tone and longtime-reader base [The Hurting] [via Attentiondeficitdisorderly]

Posted 8 July 02004 - Permalink

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Apologies: This morning, the recent massive activity of your sun disrupted Neilalien's transmissions and horked this website
If you can see this post, then either (a) he has fixed the problem, or (b) you are so under the thrall of his orbital mind-control lasers that you can read this website even when it's down!

Posted 7 July 02004 - Permalink

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@ The Movies Interview: Stan Lee [] [via Franklin's Findings]

"I wouldn't know what to retire to," Lee said in a chipper tone. "Most people who retire say, 'Boy at last I can do what I've always wanted to do. But I'm doing what I've wanted to do so there's no point stopping."

Stan Lee and Alfred Molina discuss Dr. Octopus [Washington Times] [via Thought Balloons]
His origin, like that of many supervillains, revolves around one fateful day in a laboratory... With this gem from Molina:

Although some of the DC Comics characters were fun, overall I preferred the Marvel Universe because the heroes were heroes reluctantly, and the same thing for the villains, while in the DC world, it was all too moral.

Ditko characters The Question and Hawk and Dove will be on upcoming episodes of the Justice League Unlimited cartoon [Comics Continuum] [via The Johnny Bacardi Show]

Beautiful P. Craig Russell Dr. Strange original art [EBay]
The double-page spread from Ultimate Spider-Man Special #1. Thanks to Howard Hallis for the FYI.

The Child Online Protection Act (COPA) will not be enforced [Pulse] [full decision] [Comic Book Legal Defense Fund Victorious in COPA Fight] [CBLDF Executive Director Charles Brownstein speaks]

Scholastic to launch a graphic-novel imprint aimed at teens and younger readers called Graphix []
[S]ignals the entry of a major trade house into a market dominated by specialty comics publishers...

May's month-to-month sales analysis at Pulse [Marvel] [DC, Vertigo, Image]
So many books Neilalien reads hover around the 10K mark. Sigh.

Talking with John Romita Sr. [Newsarama]

Free Comic Book Day talkback [ICv2 overview]
Retailer: Three-day holiday weekend during the summer was a bad idea [ICv2]
Retailer: Date hurt in Northampton, MA; wanted a more adult selection of comics instead of kiddie [ICv2]
Retailer: Stormtrooper presence tops off huge success in Tallahassee, FL [ICv2]
Retailer: FCBD keeps getting bigger in Phoenix, AZ; "the naysayers were wrong" [ICv2]
Steven Grant: Let's ask some questions and get some analysis before this turns into the Arbor Day of comicdom [Permanent Damage]

"Between Superhero Supply Stores and MoCCA, it's an exciting time to be a fan of the funny books" [Ninth Art]

We keep getting stunts like crossovers and such because we buy them [Ninth Art]
Never forget what lies at the bottom of the variant-cover slippery slope [Ninth Art]

Slaying Visions [The American Spectator]
An essay by Unqualified Offerings about Steve Englehart and the suicide bomber.

Why Don't Heroes Age? by David Yurkovich [Newsarama]

Comics resurging online; they needed the web since Marvel/DC/Diamond/etc. dropped the ball [Joey Manley]

John Podhoretz: Comic books are a cultural embarassment [National Review Online] [via Franklin's Findings with reactions]

Superheroes in Black and White: The Odyssey of Black Superheroes [ABC News] [via Thought Balloons]

Do cars hate comics? Pattern emerging [The Beat]

Posted 6 July 02004 - Permalink

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The animated logo for Marvel Studios [Imaginary Forces] [article about motion graphics designer Matt Tragesser]
Via Achtung Baby, who also spots a first look at the Elektra movie at Comics Continuum. Hubba! (Neilalien's saving his usual "Meow!" exclamation for Halle in Catwoman.)

Posted 5 July 02004 - Permalink

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Person relates how he visited Steve Ditko recently [Collector's Society Message Boards] [link emailed by Wrong Dimension Boy]
Steve Ditko is listed in the Manhattan phone book, with "artist" by his name. Neilalien's never had the guts to call or pop in like this person did- but he's considered it! Even thought about commissioning a sketch or logo for this website of an alien reading a comic book. But Neilalien, a private entity himself, respects the man's privacy. And the terse encounter related at the above link is pretty much how Neilalien expected any meeting would go anyway. Be careful when you meet your heroes... Not that Ditko's got time for extended conversations with every slobbering fanboy dolt who might drop by the office. (PS- Linked directly to the post because the signal-to-noise ratio in that thread is extremely low.)
Update: Leave my favorite recluse alone, jerks!

Free Comic Book Day today! Go get your free loot! Grab extras to give away to potential new readers, leave it in public places, etc.

Posted 3 July 02004 - Permalink

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Magician-for-hire with stage name Dr. Strange charged with unlawful videotaping of juveniles [Southern Illinoisan] [link emailed by MemeMachineGo]
Almost exactly one year ago today, Neilalien posted a quick link to a news story about an Illinois-based magician with the stage name Dr. Strange [link to Neilalien's post; original news item link rotted away]. Think it's the same guy.

Posted 2 July 02004 - Permalink

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Saturday is Free Comic Book Day

Saturday is Free Comic Book Day

Also: Dave Cockrum Benefit Art Exhibition at MoCCA tonight 7-9 pm in NYC [MoCCA]

Posted 1 July 02004 - Permalink

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