Retailing | Kansas City retailer B-Bop Comics is offering a complete collection of Marvel comics, from Fantastic Four #1 (published in 1961) through all books published in 2015, for $200,000. The set, which doesn’t include any comics from Marvel predecessors Atlas and Timely, was put together by a collector who bought most of the comics as they were released. B-Bop is offering them as a complete set until next month; if they don’t sell in that format, the retailer will offer them individually, which will probably bring in more money. The set includes between 32,000 and 34,000 comics, housed in 106 longboxes, plus some boxes of books of various sizes. [ICv2]
Technology | The startup ComicFlix has developed software that will automatically “draw” comics based on videos, with very little human intervention required. “The software takes the video and does a lot of algorithmic and heuristic processing,” says CEO Olyvia Rakshit. “It gives them a hand-drawn look, and stitches them together into a story. There’s very little human interfacing.” The firm has signed license agreements to create comics based on The Three Stooges and Zorro properties. The first comic will be a digital Zorro comic, available via Amazon, and they are negotiating with Dynamite, which publishes Zorro comics in print, about print editions of their comics. [ICv2]
Political cartoons | One year after the deadly attack on Charlie Hebdo, political cartoonists Ann Telnaes and Signe Wilkinson discuss the world of political cartooning and how it has changed. [C-SPAN]
Creators | John Jennings, creator of Kid Code, talks about the importance of comics as a medium and about his own work, which often critiques the representation of black characters in American culture. His work is on display at Northeastern University in Boston. [Northeastern News]
Creators | Steve Stegelin talks about his work as editorial cartoonist for the Charleston (South Carolina) City Paper, which includes not just editorial cartoons but doing gag illustrations to accompany the police blotter. His cartoons and other works will be featured in a gallery show starting this week. [Charleston City Paper]
Comics | In response to the controversy surrounding Angouleme International Comics Festival’s Grand Prix, Joe Gordon asked a number of creators and critics, including Dr. Mel Gibson, Pat Mills and Metaphrog, to name their favorite women comics artists. [Forbidden Planet]
Manga | Takeshi Konomi, the author of The Prince of Tennis, has announced that his fans may, once again, vote for their favorite characters by sending them chocolates, via the publisher Shueisha. The Valentine’s Day tradition in Japan is for women to give chocolates to the guy they like; the men reciprocate a month later, on White Day. Fans started sending chocolates to the characters in 2001; what began with just over 300 gifts grew to 180,000 by 2014. The publisher called a halt last year and went with a paper ballot instead, but now there are procedures in place to accommodate the flood of chocolates. [Crunchyroll]
Museums | The Yokote Masuda Manga Museum in Yokote, Japan, hopes to build its holdings into the world’s largest collection of original art from published manga. [The Japan News]
Festivals | The Kids Read Comics festival has renamed itself the Ann Arbor Comics Festival, or A2CAF, although it will continue to be kid-friendly. This year’s event will take place June 18 and 19 and will feature keynote speakers Cece Bell (El Deafo) and Tom Angleberger (Origami Yoda). [MLATComics]
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