Good morning. After a mostly quiet early week, the comics world punched things into overdrive over the weekend.
First, Vault Comics joined the bandwagon of comics publishers embracing young readers with the Friday announcement of its MYRIAD imprint. MYRIAD, with Vault Editor-in-Chief Adrian Wassel and Vice President of Branding & Design Tim Daniel, will publish middle grade and young adult comics in a variety of formats, including graphic novels, one-shot graphic novellas, and serialized stories. A list of titles, slated for release beginning in 2019, will be announced in November 2018.
Dark Horse Entertainment announced its own plans for expansion on Friday with news of its new partnership with Vanguard Visionary Associates. Vanguard, a Hong Kong-based company focused on pop culture and entertainment products, is anticipated to assist Dark Horse in expanding its overseas market, particularly in China. When he joins the Dark Horse board, Vanguard chairman Stanley Cheung will bring experience in translating American media from his time as chair of the Walt Disney Company in China. The timing is excellent for Dark Horse, with projects based on Hellboy and Resident Alien in the works.
Comics made headway on the academic stage, as well. On Wednesday, at Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP), Professor Gian Pagnucci delivered a lecture on comics and censorship. Pagnucci, the chair of IUP’s English department, covered censorship throughout comics’ 60-year history, from the industry’s creation and the backlash-induced Comics Code of Authority to DC’s recent editorial brouhaha over Bruce’s full-frontal nudity in Batman: Damned #1. Meanwhile, Yale University prepared to welcome graphic novelist, cartoonist, and educator Gene Luen Yang on November 7th for its Chubb Fellowship Lecture. Yang will discuss the issue of diversity in comics in a lecture titled “Power of Comics for Inclusivity and Equality,” which will be open to the public.
In response to last week’s leak of a memo from the Department of Health and Human Services arguing to define “sex” in a way that would eliminate federal recognition of transgender people, comics people took a stand. Artist Alex Graudins posted an offer on Facebook: Donate to any of a number of transgender or LGBTQ+ organizations, show your receipt, and receive a drawing of the donor’s choice. In addition, Humble Bundle’s current Vote bundle includes Bitch Planet Volume 1 and A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns, with proceeds from each purchase going to the ACLU.
- On Tuesday, the Pittsburgh Gazette-Post raised hackles again with the hiring of cartoonist Steve Kelley as replacement for fired editorial cartoonist Rob Rogers.
- Zoë Quinn sat down with CBR to discuss her upcoming comic book Goddess Mode, which will be part of DC’s Vertigo imprint relaunch.
- Paige Braddock brought her comic, Jane’s World, to a loving conclusion this week after 20 years with a much-anticipated wedding between title character Jane Wyatt and her now-wife Dorothy.
- Writer Mark Waid established a GoFundMe for legal fees in the wake of Comicsgater Richard Meyer’s lawsuit.
- Ever wonder whose skills comics creators lust after? Multiversity Comics has you covered in interviews with a variety of creators from NYCC.