Comics A.M. | Viz's digital strategy; keeping <i>Fantastic Four</i> fresh

Digital comics | I talked to Viz Media Executive Vice President Alvin Lu and the head of Viz Labs, Gagan Singh, about the company's digital strategy, which includes the recent announcement that their digital magazine Shonen Jump Alpha will publish manga chapters simultaneously with Japan; the idea, Lu explains is to create the same sort of weekly ritual that superhero comics readers have, and to use the digital releases to build a community both online and in the real world. [Good E-Reader]

Creators | Fantastic Four was the first Marvel Universe comic, so it has been around for a while, but writer Matt Fraction is doing his best to keep it fresh: "Anything you can do to run contrary-wise to expectation to keep people guessing and wondering and entertained and surprised, you should do because otherwise people are going to dismiss the book as 'Been there, read that.'" [USA Today]

Creators | Actor and writer Lance Henriksen (Aliens, Millennium) talks about his first comic To Hell You Ride, which was based on a screenplay he wrote years ago. [Bloody Disgusting]

Creators | Joost Swarte talks about music, record covers, and designing the Musee Herge: "One of the most important things I advised was that the difference between a museum and a comic book is quite huge. A comic book you read one-to-one: there is the comic artist and there is the reader and it feels quite close. If you read a comic book you jump into the drawings. And in a museum you have them on a wall and you know that to your left and right there are other people looking at the same drawing, so there’s more distance and also the feel of 'how should I relate to these other viewers'." [The Quietus]

Creators | Daredevil artist Chris Samnee is the guest on "The Other Murdock Papers Podcast." [The Other Murdock Papers]

Creators | Adam Bessie discusses his three-part comic critiquing education reform. [Graphic Novel Reporter]

Digital comics | Jacob Canfield looks at the possibilities offered by motion comics. [The Hooded Utilitarian]

Manga | Kevin Hamric, Viz Media's director of publishing sales and marketing, discusses what's hot lately — Pokemon, Neon Genesis Evangelion, and the Nausicaa box set — as well as what's coming in 2013 and how Viz is adjusting its strategy, with more omnibus volumes, more digital, and more aggressive marketing. Also: more Pokemon! [ICv2]

Collecting | Zack Smith talks to collector Glen David Gold, whose collection of original art spans the comics cosmos from Jack Kirby and Gene Colan to Jason; Gold talks about how he got started, how he finds original art, and what to look for in a piece. [USA Today]

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