This is the sixtieth weekly episode of Lying In The Gutters, the industry's mostly-favourite rumour column and gossip sheet. At all times, remember the rumour rules. Red light means it's probably bullshit, Yellow light means I think there's an element of truth and Green means you get bet your life on it. Or someone's life. Not mine, I've been wrong before (see below). Take everything you read with a Sofitel Chicago pot of strawberry jam and if you do repost information here elsewhere, please include a warning to that effect. And a link. Man does not live by hits alone - but I could do with the attention. I blame Markasian.


[Green Light]So, anyway, I've been talking to Paul Jenkins.

Paul Jenkins is of the belief that somewhere, on a message board, I made a derogatory comment concerning his colleague Howard Mackie and Mackie's parents. And he made his point most vociferously at Chicago. Jenkins doesn't recall where this statement is meant to have been made, and I've been unable to locate nor remember such a statement.

Apparently the "Howard Mackie's parenthesis" explanation doesn't wash with Jenkins either.

Nevertheless, I'd like to openly apologise to Howard Mackie for any statement or similar I may have made. It's not been a habit of mine to address the personal lives of comic book creators unless they themselves have instigated it, and I'd like to apologise for any offence caused.

If anyone out there can shed light on what this statement I'm meant to have made was, where it appeared and when, I'd be very grateful.


[Green Light]I hear the power outage hit a lot of people hard. So hard in fact that some DC staff were forced to go out drinking until the bar ran out of ice. I hear they then had to seek shelter at Shelly and Philip Bond's place for the night.

I hope the Bonds have cleaners…

On Augie De Blieck's journal Chris Eliopoulos wrote "So, like a fool, I went up to Marvel and DC to see folks, etc. and at 4 the power goes. All of the Marvel staffers are on the sidewalk. With no sure idea what to do, a bunch of us take the only logical course--head to the outdor bar in Bryant park.

"After a couple adult beverages, Dan Carr, Mike Marts, Jerry from production and I try the Port Authority. No dice. Tried the Ferry. No dice. One lane of the Lincoln Tunnel and people are hitching rides to Hoboken or anywhere else out of the city.

"Finally, I spot a moving truck who are taking people. We jump on, for $5 a person, and since they were going to Hackensack went that far, traveling like Mexicans being smuggled over the border."


[Green Light]It appears that John Ostrander and Tim Truman are working again on "Grimjack." One of the principal creator owned action comics of the early eighties, "Grimjack" alongside "Sable," "Mage," "Grendel" and "Miracleman" made quite an impact on the small-publisher world. However, like so many, it was swallowed up as companies went bankrupt and ownership was blurred.

Tim Bradstreet is expected to work on designs and covers for the new title, although the publisher is not yet known. The legal matters between creator John Ostrander and whichever financial body currently holds claims to the character are still being sorted out, but the creators aren't letting that stop them and are plowing ahead.


[Yellow Light]Peter David's work for Dreamwave on "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" was forced upon him against his will... by his daughters. Okay, okay, that might be stating it a little much, but daddy dearest wasn't as keen on working on the series until he mentioned the offer to his offspring.

However, after agreeing to the series, he began to talk to Dreamwave about a creator-owned series, look for news on that hatching shortly.


[Green Light]That first image of the Last Wolverine Story originally planned to have been written by Joe Harris and drawn by Enrique Breccia ? Here's pages 2 to 11…


[Yellow Light]Taking two rumours from Lying In The Gutters, one that Brian Bendis is working on "Secret Wars" for Marvel, and another that Gabriele Dell'Otto has been talking about painting a series with Bendis featuring many Marvel superheroes, and joining them isn't a hard one.

Poste LongshotXV linked to a site featuring a number of Gabriele's recent work (registration necessary). Well worth checking out.

Wonder if Spidey will get a beige costume this time?


[Green Light]The story LITG reported last week about Robin Riggs going open about the money CrossGen owe him, more than three months after it was due, as well as the legalities of publishing work without a contract or payment, and exactly who owns it, has kicked up a notch.

Robin's wife, a comics commentator, Elayne Riggs posted quite comprehensively on her blog about the situation.

A thorough and intiguing back and forth on the Yahoo Inkers list emerged when Andy Smith, CrossGen Art Director arrived to defend the company, but even he admitted the company was in the wrong on this one.

And now a number of other creators have given similar stories. Some wish to remain anonymous but others such as Will Rosado and Lewis Larosa have openly talked about non-payment.

Bill Rosemann's previous assurances, that everyone who was owed money would be sorted out promptly and receive a call from Bart Sears to explain the situation, has not been as universal in its coverage as Rosemann believed.


[Green Light]The mention of the "Super Hero Happy Hour" comic about a superhero bar hangout in last week's Waiting For Tommy brings news that as well as Gail Simone writing a story, expect to see a "Super Hero Happy Hour Special" with Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith, Todd Nauck, Phil Hester, Jim Mahfood, Tom Beland and others joining in…

Looks like that animated series they were talking about at Chicago might have quite a talent pool to draw from.


[Green Light]That "Flex Mentallo" Italian trade paperback I mentioned last week? It's from Magic Press in Italy. Here's a small cover shot.

I think that's reason enough to invade, don't you?


[Green Light]Keron Grant is no longer working on the "New Mutants" title. According to his Web site says he'll now be doing Green Lantern covers and "a Spider-Man/Doc Ock mini-series from Marvel." With a five-issue arc in "Spectacular Spider-Man" and another mini-series (five issues too) by Brian K Vaughan and Staz Johnson, how many of these things does Marvel have up its sleeve before the big screen showdown? Let's go with "plenty" shall we?


[Green Light]Go on then, who wants a job with Humanoids? Click here


[Green Light]Apparently that Fanboy Radio interview I did a month of so ago, has won their BEST SHOW award for the year. I'm flattered - even more so that they've asked me to do a monthly slot. More info as I have it.


[Green Light]Fans of Felicia should check out the following web strip, completed with her permission.

And despite some Marvel employee speculation at Chicago, no I didn't invent Felicia, yes she is one person, not a conglomerate of people and no, she is definitely, definitely not Nancy Dakesian. C'mon guys…


[Green Light]Jim Lee can draw Batman blindfolded. That was the bet at Chicago. No blindfold was forthcoming, so Jim had to hide under the table and draw on top of it.

Whaddaya think, guys??


[Yellow Light]Talk about last week's story about Freedom Fighter being revived, revealed the little snippet that at one point Mike Carlin has a ban on Freedom Fighter revivals. If true, it's been clearly revoked.

Warren Ellis turned down the book, however.


[Yellow Light]The more observant of you who read the perfectly delightful cease and desist letter sent to transmission3000.com over their comprehensive Miracleman content may have noticed that it gives quite a considerable amount of credence to the Dez-Skinn-had-a-reversion-clause-in-his-Eclipse-contract - the upshot of which would be that Gary Leach would have 60%, Neil Gaiman 30%, Dez Skinn 10% and Todd McFarlane, a husk...

At least Transmission3000.com will no longer have Miracleman traffic to deal with and can get on with its mad musical numbers.


[Green Light]Stuart Immomen has signed a deal with Humanoids to draw a series of graphic novels for the European market, to be later republished in the US. The series is called "Sebastian X" and is written by Michelangelo la Neve.


[Yellow Light]Last week's stories about Josh Middleton failing to be headhunted by DC have been bolstered by a meeting he had with Ford Gilmore over the Chicago weekend. Could it be a new project, will Josh become a new client of Ford's talent management company, and will any future attempts to negotiate deals with Josh have to go up a level?


[Green Light]Jennifer Contino of Comicon Pulse is in surgery this week. It's a little nasty, and Lying In The Gutters would like to send our well wishes.

If you'd like something a little more tangible, her Wish List is here.


[Green Light]Speculation gets such a bad rep these days. Okay, so it may have brought an industry to its knees, it may have destroyed companies and livelihoods but hey, that's all in the past.

"Street Fighter" 1 from Udon is being published any day now. It's had orders of under 30,000, all its overprint has already been sold out and the company is about to do a second print before the first has even shipped. Copies of the issue 0s which were happily being sold for $3 at conventions are already selling for over $50 on eBay. I'm not going to put mine up until issue 1, with a Joe Mad story and mad Asian fanboys already planning on wiping out stocks at their local shop, has come out. But if you can beat the fanboys to it, I think there's some easy money here. And you can always convert your eBay wins into copies of "Blankets," "Quimby The Mouse" or "Last Of The Independents."

It's gold rush time… send your kids to college.


[Green Light]And talking of speculation, the only place in London, hell, Europe by the looks of things, selling copies of "Youngblood Bloodsport" and "Youngblood Genesis" is a little basement comics shop called Orbital. They had twenty copies of each on Thursday. I know, because I dropped them off there.

That's Orbital, who also sell new US comics at 65p to the dollar, advance orders at 60p to the dollar. At 9 Old Compton Street, Soho, London W1 on 0207 434 9363.

I hear www.comix-shop.co.uk will have some soon as well… and they take orders and deliver online…


[Green Light]Do make sure you catch last Wednesday's Waiting For Tommy - more Chicago shenanigans and an internal memo from Paul Levitz that confirms DC's upcoming movie plans. And this upcoming Wednesday… a real blast from the past.


If you've got a story, talk to me. Your identity will remain anonymous unless you wish otherwise. You can choose a pseudonym and join the ranks of the Gutterati. Or be a demon reposter, join the Gutter Snipes and spread the word about stories in this column across the Internet, where relevant. Then tell me where you've put them up - the more mainstream the better!

You can contact me at:

  • mailto:rich@twistandshout.freeserve.co.uk (which often gets full, but it'll reach me during the day)
  • AOL Instant Message me at TwistRich
  • 0780 1350982 (01144780 1350982 from N America)
  • Anthrax packages can be sent to 8 Robin Hood Lane, Kingston Vale, London SW15 3PU, ENGLAND

Be seeing you.

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