April 18, 2013
This week has already seen
two three new interviews with the Flash creative team. In pieces with Comic Book Resources, Newsarama, and now Comic Vine, Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato pull back a small corner of the curtain on their new iteration of the Reverse-Flash!
The duo eliminates at least one suspect, while providing some insight into the motivations and look of Flash’s new opposite-number. The Newsarama (and Comic Vine) interviews also feature a first look at preliminary pages from Flash #20! Check out all of the chilling, UPDATED details after the jump!
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April 12, 2013
Today’s guest post is by Brent Clayton
Generally speaking, Mike Wieringo is one of my favorite artists. Specifically, he is my all-time favorite Flash artist. And it took his death for me to reach that realization.
FLASHback 2007 – I read of Mike’s death in Comic Buyer’s Guide #1635. I am, of course, saddened by this news, his death happening at an age far too young. I knew of his work, appreciated his art, loved the passion and fun and crispness he infused in every panel but knew him best as the co-creator of young Bart Allen, he of swift Impulse. But as I read his obituary, I was overcome with a sense of bewilderment. It seems Mike had been living in Durham, NC.
Durham, a city that was a mere 23 miles away from my hometown. I was surprised, even shocked a bit, to learn that such a talent had lived so close to me yet I had no clue. Curious, I looked up other various articles online that reported on his death, wanted to know more of his life, eventually purchasing Modern Masters Vol. 9 featuring Mike by TwoMorrows Publishing (coincidentally, a company located in Raleigh, NC) What I learned of his life forever altered my view of both him and myself.
He and his family are from Virginia, with some family roots in Lynchburg, VA. As a younger man, I had followed my heart and my love, followed her all the way to Lynchburg, a beautiful city, a city surrounded by mountains, cradled within the clouds. To this day, Lynchburg remains a special place in my life; a place I know knew that Mike shared as well.
After graduation, Mike had the opportunity to attend Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA. Due to financial concerns though, he was unable to attend. Instead he eventually came to work within the grocery retail business, rising up, at one point, to become Produce Manager. Well, I know all too well the grocery retail business, having worked within it for the past 20 years. It’s a hard job, full of little aggravations that can easily grow to the size of a Lynchburg mountain. I was sure that Mike knew those same aggravations as well as the small joys the job can bring too. I could relate to him on that level.
But he didn’t want to become trapped within that life, he felt he needed to give one more shot to his dream so he re-focused on his art, re-applied to VCU and was able to attend. Having read that, my admiration of the man grew as I saw the passion he felt about the medium and the raw talent he had to pursue a career within it, the need to strive for that dream. As comic fans, I suppose we each have that dream at one point or another. My time was during my youth, I wanted to be a comic book writer. Being a child during the 80s, in a rural country town, when the Internet was science fiction, achieving such a goal was more difficult but that didn’t stop me. I submitted to Marvel and DC plenty of times, only to get a nice decline letter in return each time (although one editor suggested I start reading Comic Buyer’s Guide for more insight and help in the business so life is, indeed, a circle)
Over the years though, I started to realize that I may not have the proper drive to be a writer, perhaps not even the strongest of imaginations. I may be good at writing, but I am not a writer. I’ve spent years coming to terms with that tiny yet vast difference. But Mike didn’t, he went back to school, chased after that impossible dream despite the risks, and we all are the better for it.
I read of the many and varied titles Mike had worked on throughout his career, not only Flash, but Sensational Spider-Man, Robin, Adventures of Superman, Fantastic Four, Tellos and so many more. I resolved then and there to collect as much of his work that I could. The man may have passed, but his work will live on forever and I wanted to catch up on what I had been missing.
But then a dark thought occurred to me. I checked through my collection to find my copies of the guest books for HeroesCon, the largest comic convention held in NC each year in Charlotte. At that point in time, I found the copy for the last year I attended the con, 2005. With growing trepidation, I flipped through the pages and soon found it – ‘Mike Wieringo AA406′. He was there but for some reason I couldn’t remember or now even fathom, I didn’t stop by for a meet & greet. I checked my other copies and sure enough, Mike was in attendance yet not once did I ever stop by and say hello. I felt ashamed over these lost opportunities, too little too late.
To some, this may all sound like a far stretch or wishful thinking. Perhaps, but in learning of Mike’s life after his death, I think I’ve come to a better understanding of the man and the artist, I think we may have shared some things in common, things that would help demystify the comic persona and see him as the regular guy he was all along. I was both glad over this realization and saddened at the same time, that I can no longer tell him these things, that in some small way, I had taken him for granted.
My hope one day is, when I am able to again, to attend HeroesCon, when Todd Dezago (a near semi-regular) or Mark Waid are in attendance, to tell them how much I’ve enjoyed their work and if they would be so kind, tell me a story of their friend Ringo…
Brent Clayton posts here and on other Flash websites as Savitar
April 4, 2013
Comics legend Carmine Infantino, co-creator of the Silver Age Flash, Kid Flash, and most of the early Flash villains, passed away at the age of 87, as reported by IGN, CBR and other sources.
Infantino was one of the few remaining artists from the Golden Age of comics. He was even the artist on a few of the late Jay Garrick stories, and when DC decided to reinvent the Flash in 1956, he did the character design. The new Flash, Barry Allen, was a hit, and Carmine Infantino remained on as artist and cover artist for the feature as it graduated from Showcase to a regular series. Many of the Flash’s most memorable Rogues’ Gallery and other villains were created in this early burst of Silver Age creativity, including Captain Cold, Pied Piper, Mr. Element/Dr. Alchemy, Trickster, Gorilla Grodd and Captain Boomerang.
He later made the move from talent to management, becoming DC’s editorial director and publisher during the 1970s. In the 1980s, he returned to drawing comics including a second extended run on The Flash that lasted until the series ended with Crisis on Infinite Earths. In recent years he was retired, but would occasionally make appearances at conventions.
I never met him, but I count myself lucky that I saw him in person at the 2006 Comic-Con International, where he appeared on the 50 Years of the Flash panel and a career retrospective. One of the stories he told at both panels was about the “war” between him and Julius Schwartz: he’d try to draw ever-more-nasty cliffhangers on his covers, and every time, Julie would come up with a story to go with it. So finally he drew one with the Flash and the Golden Age Flash both racing to save some guy, and said, “There! Top that!” The rest, of course, is history.
Other remembrances: Mark Evanier, The Beat, DC Comics blog, ComicsAlliance, Robot 6, That F’ing Monkey, Nelson deCastro, New York Times, NPR, Mark Waid, Mark Evanier again.
February 19, 2013
William Messner-Loebs, who wrote several years of The Flash in the late 1980s/early 1990s, is going though a rough patch (via Blog@Newsarama):
Hey, everyone! I seem only to get on with bad news. This has been a “Challenging” month. My wife, Nadine, will need heart surgery within the next year and some expensive treatments before that. Possibly eye surgery as well. After the carbon monoxide leak we’ve discovered some roof problems and serious flooring issues. And our stored furniture will probable be sold in a couple of weeks. So… this would be an excellent time for anyone who wants original artwork, pages drawn to order, Journey pages or anything else to get in touch! Also anyone out there who feels they may have screwed me or stolen from me in the past (a very small subset, but still…) this is an excellent time to get your conscience completely cleared at a steep discount. 25 cents on the dollar. These prices will not last!
And to top it off, today’s his birthday.
Messner-Loebs’ run on The Flash (#15-59) is available in re-issue for the first time as of last year, digitally on ComiXology. I don’t know what kind of royalties he gets from those, but I imagine it must help a little. If you’re into collecting original art, now’s a good time to buy some. Contact info is at the Blog@Newsarama article.
January 22, 2013
Bronze age comics legend Gerry Conway recently sat down for an extensive career retrospective interview. Conway is known for co-creating the Punisher, Firestorm and Power Girl (amongst others), writing the death of Gwen Stacy and many, many more comics before moving into screenwriting in the 1980s.
Topics covered in the 3 1/2 hours include:
- How he got started writing comics
- Killing Gwen Stacy and Green Goblin
- Creating the Punisher
- Becoming editor in chief of Marvel comics
- DC/Marvel crossovers
- Creating new characters
- Justice League Detroit
- Some incredible Stan Lee stories
- And much more
Interviewer Roger Priebe is running a Kickstarter campaign to edit and print DVDs. You can pre-order a copy of the DVD for $20 or a signed copy for $30, or you can contribute anywhere from $1 on up to fund the project.
With 12 days to go until February 4, the campaign is currently at $1,300 of its $2,000 goal.
January 4, 2013
Writer Peter David (Young Justice and a whole lot more) is in the hospital recovering from last weekend’s stroke. His wife has posted an update on his condition. Things are looking up, but rehab is going to take a lot of time and money, even with insurance. You can help most directly by buying his books from Crazy 8 Press. (Buying his stuff from other publishers will help in the long term, but these will help out sooner.) Kathleen David has a run-down of these books, some epic science fiction, others fantasy and humor. I picked up the two Hidden Earth books to start with.
Update (Jan 17): They’ve put together a donation button through the Hero Initiative if you’d like to contribute directly. Also, he’s able to keep writing (apparently the damage was mainly to parts of the brain that control movement), and he’s still on X-Factor.
December 31, 2012
Writer Peter David suffered a stroke this weekend. He’s lost control of his right arm and can’t see out of his right eye, but is mentally acute (he wrote the first report himself) and joking with hospital staff.
Among many other works, Peter David wrote the entire original run of the Young Justice comic book, which might actually give him the record for the most issues featuring Impulse. More recently, he wrote the animated Young Justice episode “Bloodlines,” which this blog’s readers voted as favorite Flash story of 2012 just last week.
Best wishes to Peter David and his family, and hopes for a speedy recovery.
October 23, 2012
Two quick updates on Flash co-writer Brian Buccellato’s other projects:
Foster #5 is available for purchase on his website. Issue #6 will wrap up his creator-owned crime/horror thriller story…”for now.”
As announced at New York Comic-Con, he’ll be writing the revival of The Black Bat, a golden-age super-hero from the pulp novels who was somewhat overshadowed by another character who dressed up as a bat to fight crime, for Dynamite.
September 17, 2012
In addition to the solicitation and cover for issue #15, today brings a new interview with Flash scribes Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato at Comic Book Resources. Looking back at the past year on the title, which climaxed in last month’s Flash #12 and Flash Annual #1, the duo discuss the many-faced challenges of ushering in and keeping pace with the Fastest Man Alive.
Media Blitz! features highlights from recent Flash news items. Follow the jump for personal revelations, a nuts-and-bolts look at the cast of the New 52 Flash universe and a possible timetable for the culmination of this team’s Flash run.
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September 12, 2012
Hot on the heels of the one-two infinite-mass punch that was Flash #12 and the Flash Annual, the Flash creative team of Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato are featured in an interview over at Comic Book Resources. Within, the duo look ahead to their upcoming “Gorilla Warfare” arc, teased in the Annual, as well as September’s issue #0.
Follow the jump for more about their new take on Barry Allen’s Flash origin, Speed Force Envy, their main chimp-spirations and more!
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