Comics A.M. | Alan Kupperberg passes away, Staples talks "Archie" redesigns

Passings | Artist and writer Alan Kupperberg has died of thymus cancer at the age of 62. Kupperberg got his start writing dummy letters for Marvel in the late 1960s, then moved to the production department at DC and in 1974 was hired by the short-lived Atlas/Seaboard comics, where he played a variety of roles, including letterer, colorist, and editor. That company folded after a year, and he went to Marvel, where he worked on a number of different titles, including The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man, Savage Sword of Conan, and Amazing Spider-Man. He created the one-shot comic Obnoxio the Clown vs. the X-Men working entirely solo, and he drew the weekly Howard the Duck newspaper comic as well as the comic-strip version of The Incredible Hulk and Little Orphan Annie. His magazine work included National Lampoon, Cracked, and Spy. Kupperberg also taught at the School for Visual Arts, and he was the brother of writer Paul Kupperberg. [ICv2]

Manga | Hiromi Bando has translated Keiji Nakazawa's Barefoot Gen into Chinese and is looking for a publisher, but she has been told the Chinese government will not approve its publication. Bando, who is Japanese, was inspired to translate the manga, an eyewitness account of the bombing of Hiroshima and its aftermath, after hearing of her father's experiences fighting in China during World War II. The manga is taught in the original Japanese in a few universities in China. [Asahi Shimbun]

Creators | Artist Fiona Staples talks about reinventing Archie: "I kind of took a cue from Francesco Francavilla’s work on Afterlife With Archie, which was one of the first new comics they did with a different art style and something that doesn’t resemble their house style at all. And I thought it really worked, I thought it was awesome how Francesco was able to really displace the characters, put them in a whole new context with different genres, different types of stories, draw them in a completely different art style and still have them look like themselves. So that’s when I first realized that they don’t need to be drawn in a house style to be recognizable and look iconic." [AV Club]

Creators | Tim Hodler interviews Daniel Clowes on the occasion of the publication of The Complete Eightball. [The Comics Journal]

Creators | Historian Ari Kelman and graphic novelist Jonathan Fetter-Vorm discuss their graphic history of the Civil War, Battle Lines. [FSG Work in Progress]

Creators | Reporter Gordon Block drops in on cartoonist Paul A. Merkelein's demo at a local library and chats with some of the kids in the audience. [Watertown Daily Times]

Creators | The local paper profiles Michael Frizell, who wrote the Bluewater bio-comic of Jeb Bush. [Springfield News-Leader]

Creators | Editorial cartooning is a second career for Ed Wilson, who has been drawing cartoons for the Waccamaw, South Carolina, newspaper for two years, since he was 66. Wilson is retired from a career that included banking, politics, and the medical field, which he feels gives him some perspective, and several of his cartoons have been picked up by national outlets. [WBTW]

Academia | The University of Windsor, Ontario, has chosen Scott Chantler, creator of Two Generals and the Three Thieves graphic novel series, as this year's writer in residence. This is the first time a comics creator has been selected for the program. [The Windsor Star]

Digital Comics | Tom Spurgeon talks to Guy Delcourt of the French publisher Delcourt about his company's entry into the English-language market via digital-first translations of their comics on comiXology. [The Comics Reporter]

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