Welcome to the most popular and longest running comics column on the internet. In its various forms, Lying In The Gutters has covered rumours and gossip in the comics industry for fourteen long glorious and quite scary years. It is read by more people than the Bible.

I may have just made that last bit up. But still.

All stories are sourced from well-connected individuals and checked with respective publisher representatives before publication. Mostly. The veracity of each story is judged by me and given a spotlight - Green is the most reliable, Amber means there's likely an interest involved or the likelihood isn't set and Red means even I can't quite bring myself to believe it.

Lying In The Gutters is for your entertainment. Neither Fair Nor Balanced.

Looks like I'm going to be going to the Big Apple Convention in New York this November. Don't ask how, or why, sometimes opportunities just present themselves.

Sadly, I won't be there for this. A panel on the future of superheroes with Tim Kring, Jonathan Lethem, Mike Mignola, and Grant Morrison, moderated by Ben Greenman? Goodness. Someone send me a transcript.


[Green Light]UPDATE: 2nd October

Okay it's not really comics. Not comics at all. But it is animation. Which is sort of comics if you're very literal…

Apparently, Nick Parks is going to announce his next film at midnight tonight. It's a Wallace And Grommit movie. It's funded by Sony. And this is a Lying In the Gutters exclusive. For a few hours.

There. Isn't that nice to know?


[Green Light]"Abadazad" was the most critically acclaimed title from CrossGen, and when the company folded, this magical kids-friendly title was seen as a sure bet for other publishers.

Sadly, the current publisher, Hyperion Books For Children, has ended the series with the third book, which will be released worldwide except in the United States where, well, they just aren't bothering. Any Americans who want a copy can order one here. Or maybe they can ask a Brit to swap one for a "Black Dossier."

Reading JM Dematteis' blog, one can't help but draw a link between the departure of his editor Brenda Bowen to Harper Collins.

And creators J.M. Dematties and Mike Ploog are already working on more "Stardust Kid."


[Green Light]Ian Gibson quit "2000AD" over some sort of ruction with "Robo Hunter" writer Alan Grant in August, it seems. The relevant bits from this message board have been removed, but you get the jist... Ian confirms his decision here.


[Green Light]"Scott Pilgrim" #4 is finished. And out either the end of this month or the beginning of November.

Any stores doing a midnight opening?


[Green Light]Jacen Burrows, on his Livejournal site, has been talking about the miniseries he's drawing from Alan Moore's script.

"It is all original HORROR and having read the scripts I can say that it is deeply disturbing, incredibly intelligent and unlike anything you have read from him. I expect the same level of controversy and discussion that Lost Girls created."

He also mentions, in his most recent entry, being unable to sleep and possibly losing his mind because of the work - and that the book is about insanity.


[Green Light]Now that Fangoria is gone, what happens to "Animagic," Creative Group/Fangoria Entertainment animation company and their "Nate The Great" animated show for PBS? Fangoria.tv remains unupdated, with no new content in six months. Fangoria Films announced a $100 million dollar venture in May, but nothing since. The Chainsaw Awards seem to have disappeared along with the Fuse TV channel they appeared on, and as for Fangoria Musick announced in June, its division head was laid off in August with no news since.

These departments and more can still be seen on the Fangorai website.


[Yellow Light]Arcana Studios has recently been advertising for new creators.

I'm told of one keen comics creator who wrote received a reply to a submission with a contract that gave Arcana 100% ownership of the property in every way in exchange for 40% of the adjusted gross.

However, there was no actual mention as to whether or not Arcana would publish the book, merely that they were interested. The contract also contradicted assurances on the website, specifically "Editorially you will have full reign," "Arcana offers one of the best contracts around" and "allowing you to keep your creation while working with Arcana to gain readership and show profits."

Indeed, Arcana have recently amended this to, "allowing you to work on your comic book while working with Arcana to gain readership, show profits and to develop and establish your intellectual property" after complaints, but it probably still doesn't go far enough.

After one creator questioned these points, the offer of interest was suddenly retracted.


[Yellow Light]So rumors are now circulating that DC Comics is going to launch a new "Titans" comic with the team of Nightwing, Starfire, Cyborg, Beast Boy, Flash, Red Arrow and more. Now I haven't heard any people named for art, but Judd Winick's name is all over the project.

Odds are they'll get George Perez on covers.

UPDATE: That would be Ian Churchill on art there. Heh.


[Green Light]Looks like illegal comics downloading has taken a bit of a hit the past week or so.

"TorrentSpy" is banning anyone with a US IP address using the service to find torrent files, comics or otherwise. "ISOHunt" has done similar. While this is a hit for many US comics downloaders, it's the disappearance of Canada's "Demonoid" torrent site that has caused the most concern, a very familiar site for illegal comic downloaders.

However, "PirateBay" stands tall, seemingly impervious to any and all legal attacks.



[Green Light]Marvel has paid Luiz Henrique for Dabel Brothers Pro money owed to him. Indeed, quite a lot of people are anonymously reporting to me they've been paid. But not all. I understand that Rodney Buchemi, who drew six books, has yet to see a dime. And agent Romulo Soares for Lynx Studios reports huge amounts still owed to his clients by the Dabels, and he's currently going through legal measures to secure it.

Romulo also alleges Mat Nastos owes him money for "Cadre: Origins" #2 to #4 from two years ago, and Jason Mckee of A-10 Comics owes Lynx money for "Damaged" #2 and #3 and "Hand Of The Devil".

Pierre Villeneuve, subject of one of last week's stories, owed money by Mat Nastos for drawing "Fiorre" #1, published a year ago, selling 20,000 copies, yet paying out nothing so far, got in touch.

Pierre tells me after reading the article, and seeing the YouTube clip, he got back in touch with Mat, who admits he let things slip but promises payment by December 1st at the latest. Pierre is willing to be patient and states he took his own sweet time drawing the book.

In the meantime, the letterer Angel Sainz, emailed to say that he is still owed for lettering "Fiorre" #1, and invoiced Mat $120 in July 2006. He's also owed $400 by Atomic Pop Art for design work (logos & branding).

Small sums, but they can mean so much.


[Green Light]Solicited cover to "Batman/Superman" #40

Actual cover to "Batman/Superman" #40

Insert gag about Batman getting to grips with the underworld here.


[Green Light]Newsarama reports Gene Ha confirming the ousting of Scott Dunbier by DC/Wildstorm, as an aside. This is the closest anyone aside from LITG has come to making this official...


[Green Light]The Hero Initiative is having an eBay auction of its "3 Minute Sketchbook" work. Check them out here


[Green Light]Jon Sommariva, formerly of this parish, and artist on books like "Noble Causes," "Go Boy 7" and "Star Wars Tales" has been missing for about four years.

Well, he's back with a new Jay Faerber project for Image. It's called "Gemini."

Doesn't it look nice?


[Green Light]Keith Giffen seemed to be hinting at some interesting Marvel politics when he discussed the "Annihilation" series with Ben Morse.

20) What made you decide to use Nova as the main hero in Annihilation?

GIFFEN: Andy Schmidt. I was lobbying for Warlock till we got the hands-off from Marvel.

The hands off? Do Marvel have plans for Warlock or something else?

Moses: I'm guessing Adam Warlock is the savior hinted at in Quasar. How large a role will he be playing?

GIFFEN: Once again…none. Unless DnA got Marvel to lighten up.

Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning. That sounds like politics to me. Anything to do with Warlock creator Jim Starlin's big fallout with Marvel?


[Green Light]Gail Simone wrote on Paul Cornell's wall. "Okay, but you do know you're a genius, right? That's what I'm getting at. :)"


[Green Light]Political comedians know their geek.

The Adventures of Batman And Robin

What I get up to when I'm not doing this… and more for Guido Fawkes

Check out a few familiar names...


Discuss this column at the Lying In The Gutters Forum and add your request to what you want from future columns.

My social networking is pretty much all Facebook these days, but I'm around at Bebo, MySpace, ComicSpace and Twitter, too.

I have nothing on eBay right now but check back later in the week.

And my Wii number is 0512 2690 8446 2879


Contact me on richjohnston@gmail.com or on AOL Instant Messenger as TwistRich.

You can also write to me at 8 Robin Hood Lane, Kingston Vale, London SW15 3PU ENGLAND

Or call me/text me on 0780 1350982 from the UK or 01144780 1350982 from the US.

Spider-Man: Far From Home
What Will Spider-Man: Far From Home's Box Office Mean For Sony/Marvel Deal?

More in CBR Exclusives