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Comics A.M. | Farm News fires cartoonist Rick Friday amidst comic strip controversy

by  in Comic News Comment
Comics A.M. | Farm News fires cartoonist Rick Friday amidst comic strip controversy

Political Cartoons | Farm News has ended Rick Friday’s gig as its editorial cartoonist, and Friday says he was fired because an advertiser complained about one of his cartoons. In the cartoon, a farmer comments that “In year 2015, the CEOs of Monsanto, DuPont Pioneer, and John Deere combined made more money than 2129 Iowa farmers.” The publisher and editor of Farm News declined to comment on why they let Friday go, and spokespeople from DuPont and Monsanto said they were not aware of the cartoon. But on his Facebook page, Friday wrote, “Apparently a large company affiliated with one of the corporations mentioned in the cartoon was insulted and cancelled their advertisement with the paper, thus, resulting in the reprimand of my editor and cancellation of It’s Friday cartoons after 21 years of service and over 1090 published cartoons to over 24,000 households per week in 33 counties of Iowa.” [Des Moines Register]

Passings | Manga creator Sakumi Yoshino has died at the age of 57. While her work does not seem to have made it into English, she was an active manga-ka for over 35 years, making her debut with Utsu Yori Sō ga Yoroshii no! in Shueisha’s Bouquet magazine in 1980. Her later work includes Period, which ran in Monthly Ikki from 2004 to 2014, and an essay manga, Yoshino Sakumi Gekijō, which was serialized in a literary magazine. Flowers magazine published an interview with Yoshino as well as her one-shot manga Itsuka Midori no Hanataba ni in its June issue. [Anime News Network]

Comics | Filip Sablik talks about BOOM! Studios’ success with children’s and young adult titles such as Lumberjanes and Giant Days, which have done well in both the direct market and bookstores—and the Scholastic Book Club and book fairs: “I don’t think there’s a lot of other publishers that are putting out material that is consistently aimed at younger and middle-grade girls in a series format. There’s obviously publishers like First Second and Graphix, who do amazing jobs with a lot of stand-alone graphic novels that are targeted and accessible for those readers, but what we love is being the publisher that can deliver three volumes of Lumberjanes every year, three volumes of Giant Days, multiple volumes of some of these other series into the channel and keep those readers coming back.” [ICv2]

Creators | Brian Gordon is the creator of those cartoons you may have seen on Facebook or viral sites that feature with making wry observations about parenthood. Gordon turned to cartooning after being laid off from his longtime job at Hallmark, and he has just published his first book, Fowl Language: Welcome to Parenting. [KSHB]

Creators | New Yorker cartoonist Michael Maslin talks about his predecessor, Peter Arno; Maslin is the author of Peter Arno: The Mad, Mad World of The New Yorker’s Greatest Cartoonist. [WAMC]

Creators | Tom Neely discusses his work, including Henry & Glenn Forever and his more recent book, The Humans, an homage to 1970s exploitation films. [fuse]

Creators | Arizona State University student Marieke Davis, who calls herself a “visually impaired visual artist,” is working on a graphic novel that is accessible to the visually impaired. [ASU Now]

Manga | Japanese serialization of Yona of the Dawn will resume in the 12th issue of Hana to Yume magazine, which will be released on May 20. Manga-ka Mizuho Kusanagi had put the series on hiatus after the area where she lived, Kumamoto, suffered damage in a series of earthquakes last month. [Anime News Network]

Conventions | The Detroit-area Motor City Comic Con attracted 50,000 attendees in 2015, and more are expected this year. More parking has been added this year, and the venue, the Suburban Collection Showplace, is expanding in the next few years, which should give the event some breathing room. [MLive.com]

Retailing | “I’ll have to start reading comics, I guess,” said Newton, North Carolina, Mayor Anne Stedman as she cut the ribbon at the grand opening of Big Object Comics. “Wonder Woman comes to mind.” [Hickory Record]

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