Legal | As rare Tintin memorabilia sold at a Paris auction for more than $1 million, an attorney for Moulinsart told a Brussels court that an attempt to ban the controversial Tintin in the Congo for racism is akin to book burning. “I cannot accept racism but I consider it equally lamentable that we burn books. To ban books is to burn them,” said Alain Berenboom, who represents the organization that controls the rights to Hergé’s works.
The civil case, which began last month, is the result of a nearly three-year-old effort by Bienvenu Mbutu Mondondo, a Congolese man living in Belgium, to have the book removed from the country’s bookstores, or at least sold with warning labels as it is in Britain. The Court of First Instance is expected to announce on June 21 whether it, or a trade tribunal, should consider the case. [Agence France-Presse]
Publishing | Kai-Ming Cha reports from BookExpo America, where, despite recent blows to the manga market — a 20-percent decline in sales, layoffs at Viz Media, the closing of DC’s CMX imprint — Dark Horse’s Michael Martens says the publisher’s manga sales actually increased by 13 percent. [Publishers Weekly]
Conventions | Tom Spurgeon compiles an exhaustive, and helpful, list of 135 tips for those attending Comic-Con International. [The Comics Reporter]
Retailing | It says a lot about the sorry state of music retailing that the Boston-area chain Newbury Comics “has in part moved back to its roots,” selling comics and graphic novels, to survive steep declines in new-music sales. [The New York Times]
Creators | Dan Nadel answers five questions about comic artists and Art in Time: Unknown Comic Book Adventures, 1940-1980. [Hero Complex]
Creators | Garth Ennis chats briefly about The Boys spinoff miniseries Highland Laddie. [Comic Vine]
Creators | David Barnett spotlights controversial cartoonist Jack Chick. [Guardian]
Creators | I enjoyed Ben Kuchera’s account of meeting with writer Robert Kirkman to trade a copy of Super Mario Galaxy for a signed set of The Walking Dead hardcovers and The Complete Invincible Library, Vol. 2. [Ars Technica]
Comics | David Uzumeri explains the need for minority heroes in superhero comics: “I love this stuff — comics — and I want to share it with everybody. I realize tastes aren’t universal, but when really good stories are held back from finding a mass, multicultural audience by the whitebread nature of the protagonists, it’s depressing. You can’t just change race of major icons, sure, but the world around them should still reflect the world we live in, because otherwise it’s alienating. I don’t want to read, and enjoy, comics that alienate other people for unnecessary reasons — it’s depressing, and it kills my enjoyment, too.” [Comics Alliance]
Comics | Marc-Oliver Frisch names “10 Things Superhero Comics Do Better Than Any Other Genre in Any Other Storytelling Form.” [Comiks Debris]
Comics | Autostraddle provides a guide to comics for the uninitiated. [Autostraddle]
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