Or, the hazards of adaptation and the need for more cross-genre material

Image courtesy of Amazon

During a pandemic that was showing no signs of abating, a few films were released last year against the advice of scientific and public health experts. This cautious attempt to prematurely return to “normal” was motivated by everything from blind artistic hubris masquerading as integrity to desperate attempts to stay employed to naked corporate greed, but none of the movies released had as fraught a trip to theaters as The New Mutants.

I had been looking forward to this movie since 2017, but I wasn’t willing to risk…

Where’s #JusticeforHeck?

Image Courtesy of Image Comics. All art by Cliff Chiang

Paper Girls was one of my favorite monthly comics of the last five years. It’s Brian K. Vaughan’s best writing, and definitely the best use of his puzzle box style. The dream sequences turn out to be integral to the plot! Cliff Chiang’s artwork is excellent; his facial expressions and body language are amazing, and the fantastic elements are just as fully realized. Airships and dinosaurs are super cool, and the awkward glances and friendly hugs carry weight. Matt Wilson’s colors reflect various moods, tones, and times (both periods and times of day) perfectly. And Jared K. …

The cover to Beetle & the Hollowbones

Creators of middle grade fantasy fiction have a fine line to tread. If the work isn’t scary enough, there are no stakes; if the work is too scary, an author risks traumatizing generations or being accused of such by overprotective parents who have forgotten the value of a good scare. Aliza Layne has an ace up her sleeve in the main antagonist of her debut graphic novel, Beetle & the Hollowbones. A terrifying mixture of a medieval doctor and the Grim Reaper himself, Mistress Hollowbones is an imposing figure with a bird skull for a head atop an ophidian neck…

(From left to right: Valentino Luca Zullo, Jasmine Walls, Aim Ren Beland, Mark Martell, and Pamela Nuñez-Trejo) Photo courtesy of Mark Martell

As I entered my second month of sheltering in place, I realized I had yet to write about this year’s C2E2. It was earlier this year than years past, which turned out to be a lucky move. With San Diego Comic-Con cancelled due to coronavirus concerns, C2E2 wasn’t just the start of con season, but may end up being one of the few conventions of 2020 (I’m still holding out hope for FlameCon). This was my second year attending with a professional badge, but I’ve been reeling from the events in the wake of the con, and haven’t properly processed…

Pictured: three red Starb/cks holiday cups

Happy Holidays, everyone! And by that, I mean, in no particular order, Thanksgiving, Veterans Day, All Saints Day, Three Kings Day, Black Friday, the Day of the Dead, Guy Fawkes Day, Evolution Day, the end of Daylight Saving Time, Hanukkah, Boxing Day, my friend Tommy’s birthday, Kwanzaa, the Transgender Day of Remembrance, New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day. “Happy holidays” sure is a time saver. Some of these are celebrated with more fanfare than others, or by more people than others, and the mileage varies on the devotion of the religious holidays. …

My Interview with Actor Terrence Clowe

Photo courtesy of terrenceclowe.com

Earlier this month, Marvel announced it will be expanding its podcast offerings to include several scripted programs and nonfiction shows. This makes sense, given the success they’ve had with their Wolverine podcast, which won the Webby Award for Best Original Music/Sound Design and the iHeartRadio Award for Best Scripted Podcast. Wolverine: The Long Night ran from September to November in 2018. The second season, The Lost Trail, premiered in March, with weekly episodes from July to September 2019.

The Lost Trail’s third episode, “The Cold Blooded,” contained a nice surprise for LGBTQ X-Fans. It introduced the character of Flamingeaux, a…

Happy Eid al-Fitr! We may be covering events in July, and Eid took place in June this year, but it has taken place in July in years past, and if that seems “weird” to anyone, I defy that person to explain to me how the date for Easter is determined!

Eid marks the end of Ramadan, and is one of the few religious holidays where fasting is prohibited. Having a good time is encouraged! …

Nobody remembers the guy who came out second

All art by Rick Hoberg

As Pride month draws to a close, I decided to take it upon myself to profile one of the unsung pioneers of gay superherodom. Yes, most of us know Northstar, who came screaming out of the closet in Alpha Flight 106, way back in 1992. But what of the guy standing right behind him, who debuted one year later in June 1993? Surely the second mainstream gay superhero deserves to be remembered. And so I present to my readers: Spectral, the Multi-Powered Man!

What’s that? You’ve never heard of him? That’s fair…

The Chicago Comics and Entertainment Expo, or C2E2, took place this year from March 22 to March 24. I attended as a professional and have decided to share my personal take on some of the panels I attended. This is the third and last of my Panel Reflections.

(Left to Right) Kenneth Rocafort, Russell Dauterman, Annie Wu, Erica Henderson, Babs Tarr, and Oliver Sava. Photo courtesy of Oliver Sava

I’m a big fan of learning how art is created. I used to buy DVDs for the commentary tracks, when that was still a thing, and I love behind-the-scenes documentaries. In my first Panel Reflection, I wrote of how one of the three pieces of advice given at almost every panel about…

The Chicago Comics and Entertainment Expo, or C2E2, took place this year from March 22 to March 24. I attended as a professional and have decided to share my personal take on some of the panels I attended. This is the second of my Panel Reflections.

Photo courtesy of lucyknisley.com

On Friday afternoon, March 22, 2019, in Room S405B of McCormick Place, instead of a panel, there was a two-person discussion as Tony Breed interviewed Lucy Knisley. With all the intimacy of overhearing two friends have a conversation over coffee, the audience was treated to two talented local comics artists discuss their influences, work…

Devin Whitlock

Devout Chicagoan, though born and raised elsewhere. I write about gay comic books on the internet. http://queercomicsblog.blogspot.com/

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