Retailing | Variety Comics, which opened in Chicago in summer 1974, will close its doors for good Halloween. “Business is down,” says co-owner Vin Nguyen. “It’s sad but you know, it is what it is.” Nguyen and his partner Victor Olivarez bought the store in 2009 following the death of original owner Rick Vitone. [DNAInfo]
Conventions | The Houston Press looks at allegations of organizational problems and financial mismanagement at the Houston-based convention Anime Matsuri, which has been growing steadily (attendance at this year’s event was 24,000), despite leaving a trail of lawsuits, unpaid bills and angry guests. [Houston Press]
Creators | Deb Aoki talks to the creators of the new Ultraman manga, Eiichi Shimizu and Tomohiro Shimoguchi. Here’s Shimizu on the difference between Ultraman and American superheroes: “[I]n the U.S. you have a lot of heroes who are adults, they’re already self-aware, and so they decide to follow the path of justice out of their own awareness, their own will. Whereas in Japan, through these teenage characters, they’re still young, they don’t just wake up and decide to fight for justice. So what we wanted to do was to show that path, the emotional and psychological path where the character learns about his powers and decides what to do with them.” [Anime News Network]
Creators | Kate Beaton makes the PBS Newshour with an interview about her history comics and her newest book, Step Aside, Pops. [PBS Newshour]
Creators | Stephan Pastis, who left a career as a lawyer to become a cartoonist and now is the creator of both the comic strip Pearls Before Swine and the Timmy Failure children’s books, talks about his work, the future of comic strips, and meeting Charles Schulz. [The Denver Post]
Creators | Ted Rall explains why he found Edward Snowden’s story so compelling he had to make it into a graphic novel. [Comic Riffs]
Creators | Annie Mok interviews Liz Suburbia about her debut graphic novel Sacred Heart. [The Comics Journal]
Manga | Dark Horse has acquired the rights to the zombie manga series I Am a Hero, which will be published as three double-size omnibus volumes. [ICv2]
Academia | Will Nevin pays a visit to a graphic novel course at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. [AL.com]
Retailing | Cougar and Rich Andrebou, owners of the Whatever Store in the Castro district of San Francisco, talk about their 10 years in the business. [NewNowNext]
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