Comics A.M. | First Ninja Turtles drawing goes up for auction

Auctions | Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird's very first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles drawing, the sketch initially thrown together in November 1983 as a joke but ended up launching a multimedia phenomenon, is being sold by Heritage Auctions. The high bid, as of this morning, is $4,250. The auction ends May 3. [Heritage Auctions]

Digital comics | Viz Media has formed a new division, Viz Labs, to focus on the digital side of the business, and they have put Gagan Singh, who helped develop the digital platform for Viz manga and anime, in charge of it. What does this mean? It's anyone's guess, but one possibility is that Viz, which has one of the best digital comics platforms out there, might be thinking about offering its digital service as a separate product, perhaps as a platform for other publishers. [Viz Media]

Digital comics | Digital comics distributor iVerse will launch a digital comics lending service for libraries later this year. [Publishers Weekly]

Retailing | Johanna Draper Carlson discusses a local retailer who is giving out free cookies instead of free comics on May 5. [Comics Worth Reading]

Creators | Geoff Johns talks about The Others, the super-team Aquaman was a member of before he joined the Justice League. [USA Today]

Creators | The Ottawa Citizen profiles Stan Lee. [Ottawa Citizen]

Creators | Phil Hester is picking up the story of Guardians of the Globe, originally written by Robert Kirkman. The challenge is to keep the story going while making the series accessible to new readers, but Hester says he is not afraid of continuity: "I wanted to be in on all the secrets. I wanted to get that inside information that was doled out each issue. It was interactive. That's the key: make a good comic book and people will jump aboard the moving train and put the pieces together as we roll." [USA Today]

Creators | "Popeye, whatever else you might say about him, never had the handicap of cuteness holding him back," says Roger Langridge, trying to explain the appeal of his latest comics project, which will hew close to E.C. Segar's original Popeye with help from comics historian Craig Yoe. That means less spinach but plenty of Wimpy. [USA Today]

Creators | Caitlin R. Kiernan talks about bringing her character Dancy Flammarion from novels to comics, and why she went with Dark Horse for her Alabaster comic: "I should say that I was willing to work with Dark Horse because they offered me a completely creator-owned project. I'd said for years, ever since I left DC/Vertigo, that I'd only ever return to comics if I was offered that opportunity, to do a creator-owned book, not work for hire." [Suicide Girls]

Creators | Writer David Liss discusses his revival of the pulp-era hero The Spider for Dynamite Entertainment: "Unlike the Shadow, he doesn't possess any kind of telepathic powers. He's simply an extraordinary man who recognizes he has the means and the skills and the determination to stand against terrible forces, and knowing that he can, he feels that he must. One of the things that characterized the Spider pulps was insane, over-the-top proto-comic-book villains, and the stories often boil down to the Spider standing against evil and destruction on a massive scale. He's also, in my opinion, a much more emotional character than the Shadow. He feels the suffering of others deeply, and his own personal life is basically destroyed because of his commitment to fighting crime. As a character, he's deep and interesting and complex." [MTV Geek]

Creators | Nadja Spiegelman talks about the research that went into her latest Toon book Zig and Wikki in The Cow. Warning: By "in the cow," Spiegelman means in the cow, and the essay includes photos of the inside of a cow's stomach. You may never look at tripe the same way again. [Graphic Novel Reporter]

Creators | Glenn Fleishman profiles Richard Thompson, who is dealing with Parkinson's disease while continuing to create Cul de Sac, one of the most successful newspaper strips in the business. [Boing Boing]

One of the Watchmen Just Quietly Joined the Justice League

More in Comics