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    Friday
    Apr182014

    TRANSCENDENCE (review) AT FORCES OF GEEK

    Review by Clay N Ferno
    Produced by Broderick Johnson, Andrew A. Kosorve, 
    Kate Cohen, Marisa Polvino, Annie Marter, 
    David Valdes, Aaron Ryder
    Written by Jack Paglen
    Directed by Wally Pfister
    Starring Johnny Depp, Morgan Freeman, 
    Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Cillian Murphy, 
    Cole Hauser, Paul Bettany



    Johnny Depp stars as Dr. Will Caster in Transcendence, a look at the singularity whereby artificial intelligence progresses to beyond human intelligence.

    A self-replicating computer (Depp) attempts to right the wrongs in the world via technological intervention as Evelyn Caster (Rebecca Hall) is caught between helping her husband’s dream come true and her own humanity.  Anti-tech rebel Bree (Kate Mera) enlists the help of former Caster colleagues Joseph Tagger (Morgan Freeman) and Max Waters (Paul Bettany) and FBI Agent Buchanan (Cillian Murphy) to shut this whole thing down.

    We’re introduced to the Caster couple as they are ready to give a symposium on the benefits of artificial intelligence to a sold out auditorium. A member of the anti-tech contingent, RIFT attempts to assassinate Dr. Caster shortly after the presentation. He is not killed, but poisoned by an isotope that infected his blood stream with radiation poisoning. 

    [READ MORE AT FORCES OF GEEK]

     

     

    Find All-New Marvel Now at TFAW.com!

    Thursday
    Apr172014

    COMIXOLOGY ACQUISITION Q & A WITH TIM GIBSON OF MOTH CITY ON THE COSMIC TREADMILL AT FORCES OF GEEK

    Moth City (Thrillbent) is one of our favorite and innovative digital comics, so when we heard of the pending merger between ComiXology and Amazon we had questions!

    Who better to ask these to than Moth City’s own Tim Gibson?


    We get into the nitty gritty of the pinch, swipes, scans, payments and tablet wars with our favorite Kiwi after the jump!




    FOG!: Have you ever read a comic on the Kindle app? Kind of atrocious, right?

    Tim Gibson: Hah, I’ve only read one comic on my Kindle, and that was Tumor by Joshua Fialkov and Noel Tuazon many years ago. It was a great comic but I haven’t been back to try another comic on that platform.

    What’s your initial reaction? Glee, excitement? Disappointment?

    Cautious optimism.
      
    Do you think creator percentages for something like the ComiXology Submit program will stay the same? How does this affect creator owned projects?

    Amazon has always been open about the royalty rates they offer authors, 35% if you sell your work for less than $1.99 or more than $10, and 70% if you sell between $2.99 and $9.99. I believe our royalty rates via ComiXology are locked behind a T&C wall, but they aren’t bad.

    There would probably be more comics on Amazon right now taking advantage of that 70% rate if they didn’t also have a strange ‘Delivery Fee’ that cuts into the author’s proceeds for supplying high resolution art at larger file sizes.

    I have no idea if ComiXology’s rates will change, but I would like to see our books integrated into Amazon’s store at either rate.

    ComiXology seems to be forward thinking and has good customer service (these days). Do you picture a total absorption of the company?

    I hope not, and I doubt it. Everything said to date implies that they will keep being the great company they are. Hopefully Amazon just gives them a new audience, and they give Amazon some comic selling tips!

    Do you see the iPad comics Apps: iBooks vs. ComiXology going after each other’s throats? At least the competition is healthy, right?  I’d imagine Amazon stops developing it’s various comics properties and shifts all comic attention to the ComiXology app, yeah?

    I’m not sure that any independent creators are using iBooks or Amazon in anywhere near the same capacity as they are using ComiXology. But yes, I would hope that Amazon would follow ComiXology’s lead when it comes to technology and systems for comics. I imagine they’ll continue publishing their own stuff through their imprint Jet City Comics.

     

    [READ MORE AT FORCES OF GEEK]


    Find All-New Marvel Now at TFAW.com!

    Wednesday
    Apr162014

    DigBoston and LeaguePodcast Comic Book Picks of the Week for April 16, 2014 




    COMICS


    Aw, yeah! Captain Action Cat #1 from Art Baltazar, Franco and Chris Smits is the dawning of the Aw Yeah Age of all ages comics! No crossover too silly! The time stream needs new shoes! … Frank J. Barbiere (Five Ghosts) takes on Solar Man of the Atom in a new #1! Dr. Phil Seleski is back, in a new series from Dynamite! …An all new Hulk #1 smashes its way onto shelves today with our favorite Marvelites Marks Waid and Bagley! This new volume follows up the conclusion of Indestructible Hulk! …Picks this week from LeaguePodcast.com.

     


    Find All-New Marvel Now at TFAW.com!

    Thursday
    Apr102014

    ASBURY PARK COMICON SPOTLIGHT: CHRIS CLAREMONT, X-MEN LEGEND AT 13th DIMENSION

    One of the headliners at this weekend’s ASBURY PARK COMICON is writer Chris Claremont. Here, he talks with Clay N. Ferno about his new Nightcrawler series, his approach to writing — and his first comic book!

     

    Chris Samnee's cover

    Chris Samnee’s cover

     

    Clay N. Ferno: What is your Secret Origin? How did you get to write your first comic?

    Chris Claremont: Thanks to the aid and intervention of a family friend, Al Jaffee of Mad magazine, I got recommended to Stan (Lee) to work for a couple of months as what now is an intern, back then we were just gofers. I worked at Marvel, end of ‘68, beginning of ’69.

     

    And you are returning to Marvel for your latest project?

    I’ve never left, I’ve been a contract employee at Marvel this time around since ’03-’04, the beginning of the century! It is at their discretion if they utilize me or not, but I am returning to print with new material, but I’ve always been Marvel property I suppose. Now I’m working on Nightcrawler.

     

    Is there any new approach you are taking to Nightcrawler?

    It is sort of in the ambiguous state where it is listed on the rolls as being an ongoing series, but is being treated — at least in the initial run — as a mini-series, until the office can get a sense of whether there is sufficient reader interest to justify a longer run on it. On the same token they are keeping their options open. As opposed to just signing up for a mini-series and having to reboot it down the line.

    At the moment, the interesting aspect is, as seems to happen quite a lot in the X-Men, he is back from the dead! With someone like him, who is a devoutly religious person in his own unique way, he is dealing with life, death, afterlife and now life again. He has been to Heaven. He, for necessary personal reasons, has come to life. It’s comic life imitating television art in that he and Buffy the Vampire Slayer have that in common. On the other hand so do he and Logan, he and Betsy, he and quite a few other X-Men have sadly — or not so sadly — preceded him on this pathway. There will be ramifications that I will be able to play out over the next few issues.

     

    [READ MORE AT 13th DIMENSION]

     

    Find All-New Marvel Now at TFAW.com!

    Thursday
    Apr102014

    HOW I MADE THE WORLD – THE COSMIC TREADMILL INTERVIEW WITH LIZ PLOURDE & RANDY MICHAELS AT FORCES OF GEEK

    How i Made The World is a new independent autobiographical comic book getting a lot of attention already. I spoke with writer Liz Plourde and her artist Randy Michael for some insight into the after-hours art school adventure showcased in Issue #1. With honest storytelling and classic Hernandez Bros. inspired cartooning, FOG! thinks they have a hit on their hands!


    Liz and Randy took some time to chat with FOG! about the upcoming release of the first issue.


    FOG!: Hi Liz, thanks for joining us today! How did you meet your illustrator Randy Michaels?

    Liz Plourde: We’re thrilled you enjoyed the book.

    I met Randy when we were working at a local TV station on a nightly news magazine. We realized we had many shared interests; in that frenetic environment, we had a lot of laughs. Before long, I was showing Randy my short stories, and he was sharing his illustrations. I thought they were so cool. 

    I was an English major at the time, and because Randy was also an editor—really, he’s a Renaissance man—he started helping me hone my craft. One day, he showed me that he’d adapted one of my short stories into comics form. It was a slice of life tale about a college friend. I wrote more stories about college life, and we began developing the main characters in How i Made the World together. Becoming a collaborative team happened very organically.

    Randy - how is it collaborating with Liz on her scripts?

    Randy Michaels: I liked Liz’s “voice” from the very beginning. Her writing is smart, but she also writes extremely funny lines that come at you when you least expect them. Liz and I read through her scripts with my sketchbook in hand, and we map out the pacing and major plot points and how they’ll play out on the page. Sometimes, Liz will suggest a particular angle to draw a scene. Or I’ll suggest text changes, such as additional dialogue. We brainstorm together and make it fun. There’s no embarrassment that one of us might come up with a bad idea. 

    [READ MORE AT FORCES OF GEEK]

    Find All-New Marvel Now at TFAW.com!