Comics A.M. | Artist Michele Wrightson passes away

Passings | Underground comics artist Michele Wrightson has died. As Michele Brand, she was a contributor to the first all-women underground comics anthology, It Ain't Me Babe, with a story titled "Tirade Funnies" that still rings true 45 years later. That comic spawned the ongoing Wimmen's Comix, to which she was also a contributor. Wrightson was also a colorist for Marvel and several other publishers and was married first to cartoonist Roger Brand and then to artist Bernie Wrightson, with whom she collaborated on the Creepshow graphic novel. Stephen Bissette has more in a Facebook post, including the fact that she helped Louise Simonson get her first job in comics. [The Beat]

Passings | Turkish political cartoonist Bedri Koraman died Saturday at age 87. Koraman began his career in the 1940s as a newspaper illustrator and cartoonist, and was both a staff cartoonist for several papers and the publisher of his own satire magazines. He was also a pioneering comics journalist, using comics format to report on the Yassıada junta trials that followed the country's military coup in 1960. [Today's Zaman]

Plagiarism | The Montgomery County Sentinel has removed all editorial cartoons from its website after accusations of plagiarism from Tom Moore, a member of the Rockville City Council. Several of the cartoons are almost identical to previously published cartoons by Jeff Parker, Walt Handelsman and others, with slight changes to the text and the details to make a better fit with local issues. The Sentinel's executive editor, Brian Karam, said the cartoonist, who goes by the pseudonym William Charles, isn't paid for his work, and that the newspaper is reviewing all his contributions. "I don’t mind being razzed in political cartoons, even razzed hard — as a former journalist and political history buff, I wear it as a badge of honor," Moore said. "But even those fully protected by the First Amendment have to play by the rules. I am far less offended as the target of these cartoons than I am as a guy who spent a lot of time in his 20s making sure Congressional Quarterly’s publications had full rights to every scrap we ever published." [Bethesda Magazine]

Creators | Brian Walker, who took over on Hi and Lois from his father Mort Walker, explains how he came up with an unusual name in the strip and then segues into a conversation about his life as a cartoonist and the son of a cartoonist. At age 91, Mort Walker is still drawing Beetle Bailey. [Belleville News-Democrat]

Creators | In what is ostensibly a real estate column, Robert Crumb reminisces about the places he's lived and the things he did there. [The Wall Street Journal]

Creators | Stephen White talks about his graphic novel adaptation of J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan, which is darker than the Disney movie version: "A lot of people think they know the story, but there’s so much more under the surface of Peter Pan that they’re often not aware of – that Neverland is also so dark and full of death." The graphic novel, to be published by the Scottish publisher Birlinn, also draws heavily on the story's Scottish roots. [The Scotsman]

Manga | Manga translator Dan Luffey talks about his work. [Organization Anti-Social Geniuses]

Digital comics | India's Free Comic Book Weekend starts Saturday, and it's a digital event: Readers can download five free comics from a list of over 1,000, and will be able to purchase the others at bargain prices. The event is sponsored by Comic Con India, and a number of Indian publishers are taking part. Over 15,000 people took part in last year's event, according to Comic Con India founder Jatin Varma, and his goal is to triple that. [Business Standard]

Conventions | The inaugural O Comic Con, in Council Bluffs, Iowa, drew thousands of fans, as well as some vendors who were taking part in their first comic con. [KETV]

Retailing | Thomas J. Prohaska profiles Jay Berent, a welfare fraud investigator for Niagara County who is opening Pulp 176, a combination comics and coffee shop, with the help of a "microenterprise grant" from the city of Lockport, New York. [Buffalo News]

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