Happy 100th birthday to Superman co-creator Joe Shuster

Superman artist Joe Shuster would have turned 100 today. Artist Drew Friedman celebrates the occasion by unveiling a new portrait of Siegel and his partner Jerry Shuster.

My new portrait of artist Joe Shuster and writer Jerry Siegel, circa 1939 in Cleveland, shortly after they signed away all the rights to their new character Superman to National/DC comics for the total sum of $130. The check they endorsed was actually for over $400, padded out with other payments due them, no doubt to make the signing more enticing.

Why I love IDW: Dave Stevens, Wally Wood, Jack Kirby, Darwyn Cooke

In this episode of Gweek, I spoke with Ted Adams the head of IDW, which publishes high-quality reproductions of original comic book art by greats such as Dave Stevens, Jack Kirby, Wally Wood, and Frank Frazetta. Brought to you by Stamps.com — get a $110 sign-up bonus with the offer code GWEEK!

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100 great cartoonists pay tribute to Winsor McCay

This is exciting - Locust Moon Press in Philadelphia is publishing a giant-sized tribute to the great Winsor McCay (Little Nemo, Gertie the Dinosaur). They already have met their initial funding goal on Kickstarter.

Locust Moon Press has spent the last two years assembling the LITTLE NEMO: DREAM ANOTHER DREAM anthology, in which many of the world's finest cartoonists will pay tribute to the master and his masterpiece by creating new Little Nemo strips, following their own voices down paths lit by McCay. Taking on the same giant, broadsheet newspaper-sized canvas as McCay, artists such as Michael Allred, Paul Pope, Yuko Shimizu, J.H. Williams III, Charles Vess, David Mack, J.G. Jones, Craig Thompson, Paolo Rivera, Carla Speed McNeil, Bill Sienkiewicz, P. Craig Russell, Ronald Wimberly, Denis Kitchen, Jill Thompson, Stephen R. Bissette, Gabriel Bá & Fábio Moon, Farel Dalrymple, John Cassaday, Cliff Chiang, and over a hundred more have all done some of the very best work of their illustrious careers.

Little Nemo: Dream Another Dream

The Flash: extended trailer for new TV show

The Flash, starring Grant Gustin (Glee, 90210), premieres this fall on The CW.

Alice in Comicland - interview with comic book historian Craig Yoe

Lewis Carroll’s beloved Alice is well known for her colorful adventures in Wonderland. But it wasn’t until she graced the pages of comic books that her experiences became truly bizarre.

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RIP Al Feldstein - EC Comics and MAD editor

Squa tront! Spa Fon! The great Al Feldstein, passed away today.

Feldstein began working at EC comics, publishers of Weird Science, Weird Fantasy, Tales from the Crypt, The Vault of Horror, and The Haunt of Fear in 1948. Soon he became editor of most of EC's titles. He typically wrote and illustrated a story in each title and drew many of the covers, a mind-bogglingly prolific output. Eventually he stopped doing the art for stories and stuck with editing, writing, and cover illustrations. According to Wikipedia, from "late 1950 through 1953, he edited and wrote stories for seven EC titles." I've always loved his signature, which features elongated horizontals on the F and the T, and an extended vertical on the N.

After MAD creator Harvey Kurtzman got in a fight with publisher William Gaines over ownership of the comic and left EC in 1956, Gaines put Feldstein in charge of the humor magazine, where he remained as editor until 1985.

Here's an excellent biography of Feldstein, which came out last year.

Gweek podcast 144: Black Terror vs. Killer Robot

jared

In each episode of Gweek, Dean Putney and I invite a guest to join us in a discussion about recommended media, apps, and gadgets. This time our guest was Jared Zichek, owner of Golden Age Figurines, which produces limited edition hand painted resin figurines of selected superhero, science fiction, and horror characters from the Golden Age of Comics.

harrysThis episode is brought to you by Harry’s quality men’s shaving products. Go to Harrys.com and use the promo code BOINGBOING to save $5 off your first purchase.

Jared's picks:

Flesh & Steel: The Art of Russ Heath

Ultra Q: The Complete Series

MeshFusion modeling plugin for Modo 701.

Dean's picks:

New album release from George and Jonathan with a cool visualization of all the notes.

govtrack.us, a website for tracking US Congress bills, congresspeople, voting records and committees. Email notification system. I found it while looking up H.R. 1852: Email Privacy Act

Giggle Blossom, the Fiverr Clown. A very sweet clown that will record a video of any message you like.

Mark's picks:

Boing Boing has a new podcast! Futility Closet is a celebration of the quirky and the curious, the thought-provoking and the simply amusing. This podcast is an audio companion to the popular website that catalogs more than 7,000 curiosities in history, language, mathematics, literature, philosophy, and art.

New books at Wink

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Winner of the Remix "The Fifth Beatle" giveaway

I recently reviewed the incredible graphic novel biography, The Fifth Beatle: The Brian Epstein Story, written by Vivek J. Tiwary and illustrated by Andrew C. Robinson and Kyle Baker. (It was just nominated for two Eisner awards!)

Last week I announced that Wink (a paper book review website that my wife Carla Sinclair edits) was holding a giveaway of the rare signed, numbered, slipcased "Limited Edition" of The Fifth Beatle, which is limited to 1500 copies, signed by all three creators and comes with an exclusive tip-in page of art. Entrants to the giveaway were asked to write their own text for the word balloons in the panel above. (Clockwise L-R John Lennon, George Harrison, Brian Epstein, Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney. NOTE: John has 2 balloons.)

The entries were judged by Vivek J. Tiwary himself, and he selected a winner for the limited edition and a runner-up for a regular edition.

Here are the winning entries

Gweek podcast 142: the funniest living American

In each episode of Gweek, Dean Putney and I invite a guest to join us in a discussion about recommended media, apps, and gadgets. Our guests this week are:

Ruben Bolling, author of the weekly comic strip Tom the Dancing Bug, which premieres each week on Boing Boing, and pre-premiers for members of his Inner Hive, which you can join by going to tomthedancingbug.com.

Nick Carr is a New York City movie location scout. On his blog, Scouting New York, Nick says he’s been pretty much everywhere, from the highest rooftops to the deepest subway tunnels, from abandoned ruins to zillion-dollar luxury penthouse apartments.

This episode is brought to you by:

NatureBox, makers of delicious, wholesome snacks delivered to your door. Go to NatureBox.com/gweek to get 50% OFF your your first box.

iFixit, the world’s free online repair manual for everything.. Use coupon code GWEEK at checkout and get $10 off your order of $50 or more.

The Boondocks. Season 4 starts on Monday April 21 on Adult Swim.

Nick's picks:

Best Bathroom - Highly recommended app for anyone coming to NYC

K2 - Great board game from Poland I’ve been playing recently

Ruben's picks:

Paul has a Summer Job, by Michel Rabagliati

Henry Speaks for Himself, by John Liney

Dean's pick:

Love and a Sandwich -- stuffed animal monsters

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Tell Me Something I Don't Know 027: cartoonist and zinemaker Nicole Georges

Tell Me Something I Don’t Know is Boing Boing's podcast featuring artists, writers, filmmakers, and other creative people discussing their work, ideas, and the practical side of how they do what they do.

Nicole Georges is a cartoonist, writer, zinemaker, teacher, aerobics instructor (?), and pet portraitist. When she was a child, Georges’ mother and family told her that her father died when she was a baby. When she was 21, a palm reader told her that her biological dad was still alive. She called conservative talk show host Dr. Laura for some advice. She chronicles what happened next in her graphic memoir, Calling Dr. Laura.

Based in Portland, Georges has been making comics and zines including “Invincible Summer” for over a decade. She also teaches at the Independent Publishing Resource Center, which provides access to tools and resources for creating independently published media and artwork. Georges tells us about teaching Riot Grrl history and zinemaking to teenagers, and finding value and self-empowerment through self-expression. When we talked to Georges, she was in the middle of a 9-month fellowship at the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, VT.

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A video history of Last Gasp comics

[Video Link] Last Gasp comics has posted the first video in a series called "This Moment in Last Gasp History." This one is about publisher Ron Turner's involvement in a scandalous political fundraising party that resulted in the following New York Times headline: "Political 'Party' Goes So Far, Even San Francisco Is Aghast."

In a recent episode of Gweek, Last Gasp marketing director Janelle Hessig told me: "Ron Turner regularly stops by my desk at Last Gasp and tells me crazy stories about Last Gasp history (smuggling comics into the Hanoi Hilton, smuggling comics to Fidel Castro, Last Gasp sponsoring a Formula 1 race car, goats in taxi cabs, weird 70s sex parties, you name it). I don’t have the means to write Ron’s biography so I’m turning some of these stories into short videos."

Tell Me Something I Don't Know 026: Teenager X

Tell Me Something I Don’t Know is Boing Boing's podcast featuring artists, writers, filmmakers, and other creative people discussing their work, ideas, and the practical side of how they do what they do.

Two years ago, we recorded a conversation with a 16 year-old high school student. Not someone famous, but someone who is, to you, a random teenager. So that he could feel free to speak candidly about friends, school, and culture, we gave him the pseudonym Teenager X. He told us about being more tech-savvy than his teachers, he described his hectic schedule, he vented frustrations about learning to drive, and shared a funny anecdote about being kicked out of an online Metal Gear game.

Two years later, we revisit Teenager X. He's 18 now and mere months away from high school graduation. He talks about high school "busy work", modern jazz, and nerd culture. He tells us about a brief stint reviewing rom-coms for his high school newspaper and ponders his plans for life after high school, work, college, and girls.

Also: We've got a T-shirt bearing TMSIDK's smart aleck logo! Challenge people with your shirt to tell you something you don't know. Everyone loves a know-it-all.

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RiYL podcast 047: cartoonist Box Brown, "Andre the Giant: Life and Legend"

Recommended if You Like is Boing Boing's weekly podcast of Brian Heater's cafe conversations with musicians, cartoonists, writers, and other creative types.

In this episode, we speak with Box Brown, the artist behind the newly-released graphic novel Andre the Giant: Life and Legend. By way of background, he also designed RiYL’s logo, so in a sense he’s been part of the podcast since the beginning. I’ve been aware of his work since the earliest days, when he first began exploring the medium. He posted his loosely autobiographical comics on message boards of established cartoonists like James Kochalka. He put his work out on floppies and webcomics. Those early strips were really rough.

I can’t think of a single cartoonist whose work I’ve watched progress from such an early stage. And it was no doubt that exact drive to put his stuff out in the world that helped Brown improve, culminating with the forthcoming release of his first full-length book, Andre the Giant: Life and Legend, which examines the man who became professional wrestling’s largest legends.

Brown and I met up at a coffee shop next door to Locust Moon, my favorite comic shop in Philadelphia. We discussed giving it all up to pursue your dream — and, like zine publisher (and friend of Brown) Robert Newsome before him, the cartoonist was more than happy to discuss his lifelong love of professional wrestling with a podcast host who’s only just beginning to familiarize himself with the subject.

Oh, and as we approach episode 50, I’m asking listeners to let me know which RiYL episodes have been their favorite, thus far. Please send any feedback to riylcast@gmail.com

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My favorite history comic books, by Max Brooks, author of the Zombie Survival Guide

[Max Brooks, author of the Zombie Survival Guide, has a new historical comic book out, called The Harlem Hellfighters, about the historic black 369th infantry regiment from WWI. Here's an exclusive essay that Max wrote for Boing Boing about his favorite history comic books. It's a terrific reading list! -- Mark]

History is boring, and I say that as a former history major. In high school, history was the only subject I was any good at. It kept me focused, it kept me engaged. It probably kept me off drugs. To this day, the “life story of the human race,” to quote one of my college professors, is nothing short of a lifelong passion. However, it’s a passion I share with very few people. And why? Because history is boring. Or, to be more accurate, it’s too often presented in a boring way.

Too often teachers do nothing more than preach fact regurgitation, while using uninspired texts. They numb the brain and extinguish the heart with a flood of intricate details without ever taking the time to tie those details together. I’ve been lucky enough to have some great history teachers, and what made them great is that they always started with the BIG PICTURE. They introduced their subjects in the broadest, simplest, most easily digestible manner before diving into the specifics. That big picture thinking kept me as focused as the finished image on the box of a jigsaw puzzle, and it’s a method I continue to use whenever I tackle a new subject.

Before cracking a one ton tome by David McCullough or Doris Kearns Goodwin, I always try to find a big picture primer for their subject, and through the years, I’ve found no better primer than comic books. The visual aspect of illustrated work has always made history come alive for me. To see the clothing, hairstyles, architecture and technology in vibrant color (or even black and white) serves as an instant time machine.

Sometimes I’ve found all the information I’ve needed on a subject within a comic book’s pages. Sometimes those pages have served to stoke my interest. Sometimes they’ve even taught me something the prose volumes have missed.

Here are few examples of the illustrated books that have taught me about what once was. They are:

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Gweek podcast 138: From Russia with Doubt

In each episode of Gweek, I invite a guest or two to join me in a discussion about recommended media, apps, and gadgets. This time my guests were:

Ramez Naam, a computer scientist and the H.G. Wells Award-winning author of three books, including the sci-fi thriller Nexus, which has been optioned as a film by Paramount and director Darren Aronofsky. The follow up title, Crux, came out in August.

Dean Putney, Boing Boing’s software developer and Gweek regular, whose self published a book of his great-grandfather’s World War I photos.

Danimal Cannon, a touring chiptune and heavy metal musician who occasionally composes music for indie video games. His album Parallel Processing was recently launched as the soundtrack for the new game Wave Wave on iOS.

This episode of Gweek is brought to you by:

Lynda.com, with over 2,000 high-quality and engaging video courses taught by industry experts. Visit lynda.com/gweek to try lynda.com free for 7 days

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Show Notes:

Ramez's picks:

Geekomancy and Celebromancy by Michael Underwood: Fun, witty, insider-joke filled geek urban fantasy.

How to get the most out of Facebook & Twitter: It’s all about Lists. And an app: TweetDeck.

rubtr: A browser plugin that lets you rebut pages that are inaccurate, and see rebuttals that have been made.


Dean's picks

Wave Wave - upcoming iOS game by Thomas Janson built around a fantastic chiptune album by Danimal Cannon.

The ArtisanVideos subReddit


Mark's picks:

From Russia With Doubt: The Quest to Authenticate 181 Would-Be Masterpieces of the Russian Avant-Garde A couple of amateur art collector brothers buy $40,000 worth of paintings on eBay, and they are appraised at $50 million.

My Passport Ultra 2TB Portable External Hard Drive I have replaced my external desktop hard drives with these. They are small, quiet, and inexpensive.

And much more!