Segmentation of the Innocent

I had a whole column planned this week about “The Complete History of Earwigs in Comics,” but as my agent pointed out, emphatically and with much passion, “Readers don’t like earwigs.” There’s no accounting for taste. To sum up the article in brief: “there aren’t many.”

We must note the passing of Ralph McQuarrie and Jean “Moebius” Giraud, two of the finest concept illustrators ever to raise pen to paper.  The Forbidden Planet keeps a pretty good stock in movie art books, concept art and other illustrative tomes of nifty drawings. Help yourself get over these sad passings by reminiscing with friends over some collections of their finer stuff.

They say famous people die in threes…I wonder if concept artists count as famous? If they do then H. R. Giger and Geoff Darrow better look both ways before they cross the street. There’s not that many famous concept artists left!

THIS WEEK

Buffy Season 9 #7 hits the shelves when we see print. YEARS ago a new Buffy would have been Earth shattering news, but it seems the ardor has cooled. I might pick this one up…it promises to have Spike and “Big Changes for our Slayer.”

I have NEVER plugged an Aspen book in my life, but I’m intrigued by the premise of Dead Man’s Run, which has a reprint of #2 and a new #3 out this week.  In Dead Man’s Run a cartographer dies and goes to Hell to find the afterlife is like a fiery, maximum-security prison. Dead set on a jail-break, our “hero” is trolling hell to find the toughest dead scofflaws to assist his scheme.  Sure, sounds fun!

And speaking of art books: Molly Crabapple’s Week In Hell drops this week, and so will many jaws when they get a look inside! Crabapple is one of the most notable up-and-coming comic artists with a long and promising career ahead of her. In this latest collection of her work she details locking herself into an installation space and filling the complete room (floors, ceilings and walls) with art, a daunting task which sends our heroine spiraling down the path of self-inflicted madness!

DRIVEN BATTY

Batgirl #7 is one of the noteworthy titles from that fine publisher available today. Anyone who has never read Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s AMAZING title Batman: The Killing Joke should stop doing everything they’re doing, short of breathing and pumping blood, and buy it RIGHT NOW! Luckily DC is here to commercially exploit the crazy ole’ wizard AGAIN with the release of DC Universe by Alan Moore, a beautiful hard cover of The Killing Joke, What Ever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow and many of Moore’s other fantastic tales.

These days you’ll notice that our good friend Barbara Gordon has bounced back from her unfortunate past. Under years of brilliant character development from writer Gail Simone, (Who, incidentally also has work in this week’s inspiring IDW book Heroic: A Womanthology HC) audiences loved a paralyzed Batgirl in her new persona, Oracle. Simone is back and has to win fans trust and respect anew through the adventures of a newly restored, mobile Batgirl.

Batgirl #7 tells the events of Batman: The Killing Joke through Barbara’s eyes. Now THIS is gonna’ be scary!

You probably want to go ahead and pick up Avengers Assemble #1, as well. You’re welcome.

NEXT WEEK: WHY aren’t there more positive images of earwigs in comics, PLUS the unfortunate obituary of Bernie Wrightson, Mike Mignola, Dave Cooper and many other fine illustrators who’s bus ran off a cliff on the way to the Concept Illustrator’s Annual Convention.

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More musings from Unkiedev, Earth’s own sidekick, can be read at unkiedev.blogspot.com

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