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Comics A.M. | Asterix artist battles taxman, Dick Tracy cartoonist retires

by  in Comic News Comment
Comics A.M. | <i>Asterix</i> artist battles taxman, <i>Dick Tracy</i> cartoonist retires

Creators | Ruling that cartoonist Albert Uderzo can’t benefit from tax breaks extended to authors, French authorities have ordered the Asterix co-creator to pay $273,000 in taxes on the 24 books he and late collaborator late René Goscinny produced between 1959 and 1979. The country’s tax office asserts the extra tax exemption applies only to “people who have participated in writing the texts of the comic strip.” “This is an injustice and a scandal,” the 84-year-old Uderzo said. [The Telegraph]

Creators | Cartoonist Dick Locher is retiring from the Dick Tracy comic strip after 32 years, handing the reins to artist Joe Staton and writer Mike Curtis. Their first strip will appear in newspapers on March 14. “It’s time to move on to other things,” the 81-year-old Lochner tells Michael Cavna. “It’s time to do normal things with my family, to travel, to paint in the American Southwest.” [Comic Riffs]

Publishing | In an article focusing on the commercial success of The Walking Dead, Image Comics reveals that initial print runs for the collected editions are 100,000 copies. More than 2 million copies of the trade paperbacks have been sold. [Publishers Weekly]

Legal | Running counter to arguments used in the United States to criminalize cartoon depictions of “a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct that is obscene,” a researcher at the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience is proposing the use of comics containing child pornography to steer “pedophiles’ impulses in the right direction” and reduce the abuse of actual children. A Dutch anti-child pornography group supports the sure-to-be controversial plan. [Radio Netherlands Worldwide]

Retailing | Although San Antonio, Texas, retailer Atomic Comics & Gaming announced just days ago that it would close at the end of next month, owner Gary Ruiz now says the store will remain open. “Alright, we have not taken our last breath here,” he writes on the store’s website. “We will ride this store till the wheels fall off.” He tells Rene A. Guzman: “We had a small financial scare but thanks to some backing from individuals we are able to keep our doors open and will continue to serve the San Antonio community.” []

Retailing | Jeffery Klaehn surveys a half-dozen retailers about the state of the comics industry. [Pop]

Publishing | Jeff Webber, IDW’s director of e-publishing, talks about his company’s approach to digital comics. []

Publishing | Later this year Archie Comics will release its first-ever graphic novel, Archie Babies, by Mike Kunkel and Art Mawhinney. [Publishers Weekly]

Publishing | Th3rd World Studios, publisher of The Stuff of Legend and The SuperFogeys, has signed an exclusive agreement with Diamond Comic Distributors for direct market and bookstore distribution. []

Creators | Matt Fraction chats about The Mighty Thor, the new series set to debut in April to serve as an entry point for new readers/movie audiences and lapsed fans. [Hero Complex]

Creators | Montclair State University’s student newspaper interviews cartoonist and letterer Chris Eliopoulos. [The Montclarion]

Creators | Ariel Schrag profiles the late mystery writer and comic artist Patricia Highsmith. [After Ellen]

Creators | Brian Heater continues his multi-part interview with Sarah Glidden, creator of How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less. [The Daily Cross Hatch]

Comics | John Przybys spotlights Southern Nevada’s comics scene. [Las Vegas Review-Journal]

Comics | Gina Gagliano recommends seven comics that feature supernatural teenagers. [First Second Books]

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