Conventions | Denver Comic Con kicks off today, with organizers expected a weekend attendance of 100,000 — a big jump from the 20,000 who turned out in 2012 for the first convention. This year’s event will also see tighter security measures, which will include the confiscation of prop weapons deemed potentially dangerous. “While we can’t discuss details, we look at different threats going on around us and we have made adjustments accordingly,” said organizer Tara Hubner, “and we will have a robust security presence on site.” [KDVR, CBS Denver]
Creators | Alexandra Lange looks at Luke Pearson’s Hilda books, which will receive their own Netflix series. Kurt Mueller of Silvergate Media, which will produce the show, explains the appeal of the books: “All of these stories are riffs on folktales that are as old as time, that have taken a hard left turn through Luke’s imagination and all of these contemporary pop-cultural sensibilities. Like the movies of Miyazaki, she feels totally of the moment, but she’s reacting to something that feels ancient and archetypal.” [The New Yorker]
Creators | Writer Van Jensen traveled to Georgia — the country — recently as a comic book ambassador to help a group of students create their own comic. He also visited a camp for displaced persons and got the children there rolling on their own comics: “These were, like, 10- to 12-year-olds, and these comics were certainly as good as anything I was making at that age. So much of the plan was for me to tell them, ‘I’m no more special than anyone else. You have a story to tell, and comics are a really cool way to tell that story.'” [York News Times]
Creators | Dan Parent talks about his new Kevin Keller comic, which brings Riverdale’s first gay character into the adult world — and moves him to New York City. “Basically, with an older Kevin, one who’s an adult, you can do a lot more story lines — especially in the career and romance departments,” Parent explained. “And he’s not that far from Riverdale. Riverdale is only a few comic-book panels away!” [Vulture]
Creators | Vera Brosgol, who won an Eisner Award for her graphic novel Anya’s Ghost, discusses Be Prepared, a graphic memoir she’s working on about spending a summer at a camp for Russian Orthodox children. [Bustle]
Creators | In an interview conducted in English for a Dutch-language publication, Hans Rickheit comments on the state of online comics, graphic novels, and literacy in general: ” With each passing year, it appears that people are losing their ability to form coherent sentences or express themselves with anything above a monosyllabic vocabulary. The excessive use of acronyms and cute emoticons hint to me of an Orwellian destruction of language. People are celebrating their own cretinization. I suppose that I should take heart in this. As more of the populace becomes increasingly illiterate, the greater the demand for stories that combine words and pictures.” He also recommends a handful of his favorite creators. [Barbarus cultureel webtijdschrift]
Political cartoons | “I believe that no regime can stand it if people keep laughing at them. That is why they are maybe afraid of me,” Malaysian political cartoonist Zunar told Australia’s ABC News. He faces up to 43 years in prison if convicted on sedition charges, but he refuses to let that affect his work: “If I start to think too much about the outcome, I will practice self-censorship and that is not good for my cartoons.” [ABC News]
Comics | Glen Weldon looks at DC Comics’ Rebirth and the shifts in continuity over the years. [NPR]
Comics | One of the comics debuting at Denver Comic Con is created by a group of inmates in the Boulder County, Colorado, jail who are taking a literacy course that uses graphic novels, including Art Spiegelman’s Maus, G. Neri’s Yummy, and Doug Ten Napel’s Ghostopolis as texts. [KUNC]
Libraries | Librarian Tom Maluck explains why having and featuring a collection of graphic novels with LGBTQ+ characters is important for libraries. [Panels]
Festivals | Here’s Sacha Mardou’s writeup of CAKE, Chicago’s indie-comics festival. [Comics Workbook]
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