News Review: December 2012

04 Jan




Revista Universitária do Audiovisual (RUA) released a collection of articles devoted to comics and animation, on subjects ranging from page as symbolic space, comics canon and autobiography. Link (16/12/2012, Portuguese, GS)

United States 


The Beat reports that longtime editor Karen Berger has stepped down from DC’s Vertigo imprint. Link (03/12/2012, English, HMS)

Joey Esposito of IGN announces that Batgirl writer Gail Simone has been fired from her post on the series. Link (09/12/2012, English, HMS)

The Beat confirms that Batgirl writer Gail Simone has been rehired to write Batgirl after public outcry and pressure on DC to keep Simone on the title. Link (21/12/2012, English, HMS)

Calvin Reid of Publishers Weekly announces that Karen Berger’s successor at Vertigo has been named as Shelley Bond. Link (19/12/2012, English, HMS)

Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. presents sales figures on the top 100 comics for November 2012. Link (English, HMS)

Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. presents sales figures on the top 100 graphic novels for November 2012. Link (English, HMS)

The Beat reports on Robert Kirkman’s (The Walking Dead) assertion that digital comics media has not cannibalised print comic sales. Link (19/12/2012, English, HMS)

The Beat reports that Devil’s Due Entertainment, after a period of financial instability and the loss of its top titles, is back in business with new publications and goal. Link (19/12/2012, English, HMS)

The Beat reports on the Eisner Award judges named for 2013. Link (12/12/2012, English, HMS)


Wizard World announces the addition of Comic Cons in St. Louis from the 22nd-14th March, and Nashville from the 18th-20th October, to its 2013 schedule. Link (English, HMS)

Matthew Katz of in New York reports that a special one-day exhibit will celebrate the 75th anniversary of Superman on the 27th January  2013 at the Center for Jewish History in New York. The exhibit will include a panel hosted by Larry Tye, author of  Superman: The High-Flying History of America’s Most Enduring HeroLink (21/12/2012, English, HMS)

Law and Politics

Betsy Gomez of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund announces the CBLDF’s new  advisory board for 2013, including Dennis Kitchen and Neil Gaimain. Link (11/12/2012, English, HMS)


Michigan State University announces its 2013 Comics Forum to be held from the 1st-2nd March 2013 and issues a call for abstracts for individual presentations as well as panels and roundtable discussions. 250 word abstracts in PDF format should be submitted by the 31st January 2013, to Ben Chabala at Link (English, HMS)

Tom Spurgeon of The Comics Reporter interviews critic Marc Sobel about his upcoming books from Fantagraphics, The Love and Rockets Companion and The Love and Rockets Reader, as well as the work of the Hernandez Brothers. Link (26/12/2012, English, HMS)


The Beat reports on the launch of Symbolia, a tablet app for graphic non-fiction journalism, edited by Erin Polgreen. Link (03/12/2012, English, HMS)




The Beat reflects on the death of Barefoot Gen‘s Keiji Nakazawa on the 19th December 2012, and his impact on comics. Link (26/12/2012, English, HMS)


The evolution of BL aesthetics in BL (Boys’ Love) Manga, a talk by Dr. Nishihara Mari and .Dr. Nagata Natsuki, will take place on the 19th January 2013. You can follow this talk on this Ustream channel link: Link (06/01/2013, Japanese, JBS)



The 11th edition of Comic Fiesta, touted the largest ACG (Animation Comics Games) gathering in Malaysia, was held at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre on the 22nd and 23rd December. Link (English, LCT)

The Philippines


The Fine Arts Programme of the Ateneo de Manila University organised Panel by Panel: A Dialogue on Comics in Southeast Asia on the 10th December. Speakers included Lim Cheng Tju (Liquid City 2), Otto Fong (Sir Fong’s Adventures in Science), Mark Tores (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and Carlo Vergara (Zsazsa Zaturnnah). Link (English, LCT)




Comics convention Vienna Comix (formerly “Comicbörse”) is held with guest Joscha Sauer. Link (02/12/2012, German, MdlI)



A Brussels court has refused to remove Tintin in the Congo from sale after ruling that the album is not racist under Belgian law. Link (05/12/12, French, LTa)



The Ministry of Culture has announced a list of state literary grant winners. The grant (from 21000 to 42000 kunas, which is around 2800 to 5600 euros) has been awarded to 53 literary projects that should be made in 2013, including one comic book project. Alem Ćurin will thus receive 2800 euros to create his comic book Whether You Sail Or Not (original title: Vesl`o ti ne vesl`o). Link (20/12/2012, Croatian, LO)


The Croatian comic book collective Komikaze will be presented at the Angoulême International Comics Festival that will take place from 31st January to 3rd February in France. Link (26/11/2012, French, LO).



The Nordic Network for Comics Research has its 5th newletter out describing the network’s activities. Link (03/12/2012, English, RPC)



Finland gets another PhD in comics as Mervi Miettinen successfully defended her thesis. Link (15/12/2012, Finnish, RPC)



Satirical publication Charlie Hebdo must pay 40000 euros in damages, and print an apology, to cartoonist Siné for unfair dismissal. Link (09/12/2012, French, LTa)

December’s large bande dessinée auction at the Maison Millon raised 1.2 million euros. Link 1 (14/12/2012, French, LTa), Link 2 (11/12/2012, French, LTa)

Cultura replaces FNAC as the sponsor of the Angoulême bande dessinée festival. Link (03/12/2012, French, LTa)

The ACBD (association des critiques et journalistes de bande dessinée) has published its yearly report, the “Rapport Ratier” on the state of the comics market in France, including bandes dessinées, but also comics and manga. The report indicates that while the number of titles is still growing, the number of top-sellers – 50,000 copies and above – appear to be eroding. The market is still dominated by four massive publishers, amounting to nearly half of the production in the sector. Link (27/12/2012, French, NL)


Before the Angoulême festival, the Critique/ACBD grand prize has been awarded to Alan Guibert for L’enfance d’Alan. The book is a follow up to La guerre d’Alan/Alan’s war, the three impressive volumes Guibert had written and drawn about the life of his American friend Alan Ingram Cope during the Second World War. Link (09/12/2012, French, NL)

Quino, creator of Mafalda, has been made an Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters by the France’s culture ministry. Link 1 (01/12/2012, French, LTa), Link 2 (01/12/2012, French, LTa)

Jacques Tardi has turned down an official distinction from the French government, “la légion d’honneur”. Tardi was apparently not aware that his name had been included in this year’s list – ministries establish a list of deserving citizens – and he willfully turned down the honor, mentioning his desire to remain free from any political influence. Such a refusal is not without precedent, and was indeed a badge of honor for some of the influential writers and intellectuals of the 20th century, who similarly refused to be coopted by the institution. Link (02/01/2013, English, NL)


Charlie-Hebdo has been the focus of much controversy, publishing a special issue on “The life of Mohammed” on the 2nd January 2013, which is described as a historically informed approach to the subject albeit with a humorous graphical treatment. The media coverage mostly chose to emphasise the free speech angle, while relying on the authors’ statements regarding their intents. Link (02/01/2013, French, NL)

Two Muslim organisations are suing Charlie Hebdo for provocation and incitement to racial hatred, after the magazine published cartoons of Mohammed in September 2012. Link (07/12/2012, French, LTa)


Noted comics theorist Thierry Groensteen has conducted a series of interviews with prolific author Joann Sfar. Entretiens avec Joann Sfar. Groensteen explains in his introduction that the book brings together the many autobiographical and artistic clues heretofore scattered in Sfar’s comics and graphic diaries. The book is to be published on the 4th January. Link (10/12/2012, French, NL)



After a hiatus of 16 years, venerable adult comics magazine U-Comix will be published again from May 2013. Link (***Adult Content. 13/12/2012, German, MdlI)


Comicfestival München 2013 is announced to take place from the 29th May to the 2nd June. Link (16/12/2012, German, MdlI)


The yearbook Deutsche Comicforschung 2013 is published (ed. Eckart Sackmann). Link (01/12/2012, German, MdlI)

Andreas Veits and Jonas Engelmann have been awarded the Roland Faelske-Preis for research in comics and animation. Link (13/12/2012, German, MdlI)



Bryan Coyle’s and Lee Robson’s Babble graphic novel has once more been delayed. Link (English, SC)



Comics artist Joanna Helgren receives the newpaper Expressen’s youth culture prize. Link (17/12/2012, Swedish, RPC)


The Swedish Foundation Riksbankens Jubileumsfond awards comics scholar Michael Scholtz funding for the project “Entertainment or Propaganda. Comic Strips in Sweden during World War II” (1.251.000 Skr/£167.685)Link (English, RPC)


Culture have announced that Mark Millar’s Kapow! Comic Convention won’t return to London until 2014. Link (21/12/2012, English, WG)

On the 31st December, BBC1 Scotland aired a documentary, “Just Dandy”, looking at The Dandy comic book. Link (English, WG)

Downthetubes offers a photo review of 75 Years of the Dandy at the University of Dundee, running until the 12th January, 2013. Link (09/12/2012, English, WG).


The Guardian has posted an obituary for Gerry Anderson (Thunderbirds, et al.) who died on the 26th December. Many of his creations were adapted into comic books. Link (26/12/2012, English, WG).


The calls for presentations of the second global conference on The Graphic Novel has been posted online. 300 word abstracts are expected on the 22nd March, and the conference will take place at Mansfield College, Oxford, between the 23rd & 25th September, 2013. Link (English, WG)




The conference, “Women’s Manga in Asia: Glocalizing Different Cultures and Identities”, will take place from the 23rd-25th January, in the Department of Japanese Studies, at the University of Sydney. Link (English, JBS)

*                    *                    *

News Editor: Will Grady (

Correspondents: Rikke Platz Cortsen (RPC, Scandinavia), Shelley Culbertson (SC, Ireland), William Grady (WG, UK), Martin de la Iglesia (Austria & Germany, MdlI), Nicolas Labarre (NL, France), Hannah Means-Shannon (HMS, North America & Japan), Luka Ostojic (LO, Croatia), Greice Schneider (GS, Brazil), Lise Tannahill (LTa, France & Belgium), Lim Cheng Tju (LCT, Malaysia & The Philippines).

Click here for News Review correspondent biographies.

Suggestions for articles to be included in the News Review can be sent to Will Grady at the email address above.

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Posted by on 2013/01/04 in News Review


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