Comics A.M. | DC Comics confirms loss of pulp hero licenses

Publishing | Pulp heroes The Spirit, Doc Savage and The Avenger disappeared from the DC Comics lineup more than a year ago, with Co-Publisher Dan DiDio now confirming on his Facebook page that the company's rights to the characters have lapsed. Brian Azzarello paired the vintage characters with Batman, Black Canary, the Blackhawks and other current DC heroes in his First Wave miniseries, which launched in 2010. Heidi MacDonald adds, "we’ve heard that at WB it was pointed out that DC paying good money to license old characters didn’t make much sense when they had their own catalog of little-used characters to exploit." [Blog@Newsarama]

Digital comics | As noted here Monday, comiXology was No. 3 on the list of top-grossing iPad apps of 2012, and in the press release announcing this, the comiXology folks dropped another number on us: They have served more than 2 billion pages since their launch three years ago. [comiXology]

Digital comics | Darryl Ayo has some succinct advice for creators of comics for smartphones, on what does and doesn't work. [Comix Cube]

Retailing | Because reorders of Image Comics, and Saga in particular, have been a hot topic of late, retailer Brian Hibbs explains how he figured out how many issues to order, and what the results are so far. [Savage Critics]

Creators | Fables creator Bill Willingham talked about the history and practice of comics recently at the Rochester, Minnesota, public library. When he started making comics, they didn't command as much respect, he noted: "Librarians would often say, 'You know, comic books will never be in libraries. It’s kind of trash literature. It’s not very good.' And the truth is comics for most of its life span have been kind of trash literature and not very good. But they’ve gotten pretty good." [StarBulletin.com]

Creators | Writer Cullen Bunn talks about developing and pitching his new Marvel series, The Fearless Defenders. [The Beat]

Creators | Dean Haspiel interviews Josh Simmons, creator of The Furry Trap, in his latest podcast. [Welcome to Trip City]

Creators | Writer Mark L. Miller discusses the Jungle Book comic he's writing for Zenescope, which features a female Mowgli character: "Everyone was making a huge deal that I put tits on Mowglii, but I didn't really even think of that aspect. Watch any animal show on Animal Planet or Discovery Channel and you'll see that the female of the species is always the toughest." Miller also talks about going back to Rudyard Kipling's original stories to write the comic, and about how his day job as a therapist in a residential home for children informs his work. [Broken Frontier]

Comics | Lew Stringer looks at some rather surreal instances of breaking the fourth wall in the U.K. comic The Beano, which is sort of The Dandy's hardier younger brother. [Blimey! It's another blog about comics!]

Conventions | Richmond Clements reports in from the Malta Comic Con, which featured both local talent and an array of British creators, including David Gibbons and Sean Azzopardi. [Down the Tubes]

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