Publishing | Vox takes a lengthy look at the effects of DC Comics’ efforts to diversify, in terms of characters, titles and creators. The article, which includes interviews with Marguerite Bennett, Genevieve Valentine, Dan DiDio and Jim Lee, notes that while new titles like DC Comics Bombshells have been successful, others launched under the “DC You” umbrella — Black Canary and Midnighter, for instance — are on far shakier ground, sales-wise. However, Co-Publisher Lee suggests the company is standing behind the initiative: “I think it’s important for us to listen and to learn and basically to adjust and pivot. There is this emerging audience. Comics are changing. At the end of the day, if you’re going to remain competitive and grow and flourish, you have to be able to adapt and change and evolve.” [Vox.com]
Conventions | The organizers of Grand Rapids Comic Con are warning attendees about sketchy vendors offering questionable travel deals; people who filled out a form for special deals are being subjected to aggressive sale tactics. “These efforts do not line up with the vision of Comic-Con and those that treasure our community, and we can assure you that in the future our team will do a better job of vetting our vendors,” con organizers said on their Facebook page. [WOOD]
Conventions | One of the most noticeable things about this year’s New York Comic Con was the prominence of manga — not just the appearances by Naruto creator Masashi Kishimoto, but also the number of panels and announcements, the presence of editors from Japan, and of course Yo-Kai Watch, the game/anime/manga/toy franchise that is coming over from Japan this fall. Deb Aoki rounds it all up, from the big events to the smaller announcements, in one handy post. [Publishers Weekly]
Creators | Zippy creator Bill Griffith discusses his new graphic memoir, Invisible Ink: My Mother’s Love Affair with a Famous Cartoonist. That cartoonist was Lawrence Lariar (he was famous in his day), and Griffith explains how it affected his life: “My mother took on the job of editing his ‘Best Cartoons of the Year’ book one year, which meant I came home from school one day when I was thirteen years old and saw hundreds of original gag cartoons all over the floor in our living room. So cartooning entered my house and entered me through my mother through Lariar, without my being fully aware of it.” [The New Yorker]
Creators | Alex Randolph profiles Paige Braddock, who oversees the Peanuts comics as the creative director of Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates and also writes the webcomic Jane’s World, which was the first gay-themed comic to be distributed by a national syndicate. [The Press Democrat]
Creators | Sean Lewis and Ben Mackey discuss their new Image Comics series Saints, whose premise Mackey describes as “What if the patron saints of the Catholic Church had super powers based on how they were martyred?” [Iowa City Press-Citizen]
Creators | In a video interview, writer Kieron Gillen and artist Jamie McKelvie talk about their Phonogram, The Wicked and the Divine, and Young Avengers. [Forbidden Planet]
Creators | “We Kurds are a mountain people,” says cartoonist Yahia Selo. “We are loudmouthed and stubborn.” Selo, who lives in Germany, had to leave his native Syria because he was “too Kurdish” and was attracting negative attention from the authorities. Now he is working as a cartoonist and painter, publishing his political cartoons on the internet. [Rudaw]
Manga | With the news that Viz Media has licensed both Kuroko’s Basketball and the volleyball manga Haikyuu!!, Vernieda Vergara lists five sports manga that are available now and worth a look. [Panels]
Exhibits | The “Hey Kids Comics” exhibit at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, features original comics art by John Buscema and Bernie Wrightson as well as vintage comic strips going back to Little Nemo. [Journal-Star]
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