THE LIBRARIANS returns November 1st, 2015 on TNT at 8 PM with a 2 hour season premiere.
In the second season the major plot will be that the magic getting unleashed in season 1 will lead to literary characters coming to life, from Shakespeare’s Prospero to the monster from Frankenstein.
At NYCC there was both an amazing panel and incredible press session. The panel was super fun and revealed plots and stories from season 1 and upcoming season 2, while during press I was able to speak with various stars of the show to expand the thoughts from the panel and add ones not even addressed.
At NYCC 2015 I got the privilege to interview Nick Robinson as part of a roundtable in conjuction with the then coming JURASSIC WORLD blu-ray (out now in stores online and offline everywhere).
He’s an excellent young man and I’d gained appreciation for him during his time on MELISSSA & JOEY and look forward to his work in the indie based on a true story BEING CHARLIE and the major blockbuster based on the best selling Rick Yancey YA series THE 5TH WAVE.
At NYCC they transported the gates to Jurassic World to the Javits Center as well as full true to life raptor (you can call it an animatronic all you want… it was real! REAL I say!).
At New York Comic Con 2015 I had the pleasure and privilege to speak with Sam Marin, William Salyers, JG Quintel, Sean Szeles and Paula Spence, the cast and crew.
Regular Show-The Movie is out now on DVD (October 13, 2015). It is a truly epic adventure of space, time, action, drama, flashbacks, reveals, secrets end of the world/save the world antics worthy of the movie treatment. The DVD has amazing special features including a full commentary with Quintel and Szeles, animatics of deleted/unused scenes, the original board pitches and concept art.
I had the excellent opportunity to interview Mike Tyson, as well as producer/writer Hugh Davidson and writer/actress Rachel Ramras of [adult swim]’s MIKE TYSON MYSTERIES which premieres OCTOBER 27th, 2014 at 10:30 PM EST (or your equivalent to that).
Do not miss this one. It is hilarious. I have seen the first two episodes and they are great.
This Thursday the Jacob Javits gets crazy again. It’s really hard to ever truly prepare for New York Comic Con and in 2014 it gets even crazier. More people, bigger guests, some seriously big panels and with construction on the main parts of Javits mostly finished, more floor to navigate and lose your mind at.
I am not really here to help you not lose your mind. Actually with some of the links I shall be providing you it’ll only make you lose your mind more in trying to determine where to go and what to be at while also being at this other awesome thing you want to go to or be at.
There are some truly important things that everyone seems to forget.
HYGIENE! Hygiene should be a common sense rule. You are going to be in a room with over 20,000 people. Probably more. They are excited, they are nervous, just like you. We will all be tired, sweaty, smelly, but general upkeep will allow us all to have a good time.
COMFORTABLE SHOES. The Jacob Javits center is unpaved bumpy concrete and manholes. They did a ton of construction but I don’t think ANY of that construction was paving the floor. You will be on your feet a lot. The convention center runs around 34th-37th street. It’s a big place and you’ll be running from booth to booth, panel to panel up and down stairs over and over again. Protect those feet.
And to borrow from the new harassment policy.
BE NICE, BE COOL, RESPECT EACH OTHER.
Do yourself a favor though, new or old to comic con, read the newly built policy and really keep it in mind. We are all people and should respect that and some of us don’t identify that way and also deserve respect.
Now here comes a bunch of links of schedules and cool things happening at Comic Con that Pop-Culture Spectrum feels a little extra attention. I’ll be mentioning some not miss panels too, but firs this stuff.
Here’s what video game company BANDAI NAMCO is bringing to the show floor
Mimoco has some really limited power tube/battery extenders available:
But those are just scratching the surface.
Cartoon Network with Adventure Time, Steven Universe and more, Adult Swim with Rick & Morty, Robot Chicken, and the highly anticipated untitled Jack McBrayer/Triump the Comic Insult Dog show and Mike Tyson Mysteries, the new Star Wars cartoon Rebels, the entire cast of The Walking Dead, the first look at Netflix presents Marvel’s Daredevil, video game booths from Ubisoft, Activision, Bandai Namco and more, an occolus rift style ride based on How to Train Your Dragon 2, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the upcoming film Birdman, and just much more.
Then of course there’s still actually comics. Marvel and DC both going hard in presentations with panels, signings, and a presence around the entire show just through its properties in movies, television, video games and toys. One of the best mainstream companies Valiant has already announced their future lineup but will be going into detail and pushing hard. Then of course there’s Artist’s Alley with all the great indy artists, self publishers and more.
On top of that you still have The Block with all the vinyl toy artists, street artists and graffiti artists. Then the fringe. You never know what you’ll find at NYCC. It’s a great place for a product to debut designed for the new fan.
Last year, Einhorn’s Epic Cookies made their debut at the show. While they have a truly saavy connection to comics through their branding as well as having original comics developed by Kyle Starks and Jacob Chabot it’s their awesome cookies that make them awesome and I am glad they are back as should you be!
NYCC starts tomorrow. You can think you’re ready, you’re never ready, but you’ll have fun thinking so!
Cos-Play was definitely a thing at the scaled down, Special Edition: NYC. The new venture for Reed Pop!. the organizers of such events as UFC Fan Expo, New York Comic Con and the recently launched BookCon that took place on June 14 & 14th of 2014 was definitely a mini success with as I was there a quite more than I expected crowd and lots of quality comics creators promoting, selling, doing sketches and greeting fans. It was assortment of everyone as Marvel and DC both represented well, as did Dark Horse, Valiant, Image and a slew of self publishers, independent press and people just starting out through deviant and webcomics.
Among people there were Danny Fingeroth, former Marvel editor and writer, editor of WRITE NOW! and an educator in comics writing. Also, Laura Lee Gulledge, Harvey and Eisner award nominated writer/artist of the graphic novels Paige by Page and Will & Whit, who was also promoting the currently workshopping musical version of her second book. Valiant Comics has also been on a role since they returned to the world of publshing, hiring some amazing talents and doing top notch series… but they also got marketing and merchandising down with plushies.
NYCC is a huge show with major celebrities and a big part of this year looks to be pop-culture nostalgia. Already announced so far has been a Karate Kid reunion, a panel focusing on LOST and a U.S. appearance by the creator of Death Note and Bakkuman. Special Edition allowed for a focus on comics which can at times get ignored at the big show even if the big guns do come out firing. I hope the show did well enough so it can become something even larger yet kept as a comics focused and only comics focused event. Marvel and DC bring some mega booths to SDCC & NYCC each year and I think there are fans who would love to see that without having to experience the insanity of a everything in pop-culture event.
Navigating through NYCC each year can be quite an adventure. I’ve been going since year one and while I always have an amazing time, know my way around and have contacts in places, even I get lost in the shuffle of it all. Panels pop at last minute, schedules change. All that, and more. This presentation of collected links is something a little different though.
This is for those NYCCer attendees who are either attending all four days or just have that ONE big panel they wanted to go to and don’t intend to explore New York City itself. Because? You don’t have to. By all means, if you are on Vacation and using NYCC as an excuse to come to New York then take full advantage. Yet I know there are plenty folks like me who live here or maybe just want to experience comic con. If that’s the case even with a full schedule there will be hours of time where you’ll be “What now?” and instead of just standing there trying to be “I’ll just play more Zelda or stand around the Marvel booth” I went and looked up some interesting stuff for you to check out.
First up are some booths that could if anything provide moments of enjoyment and add to that getting the bang for your buck experience:
One of the most exciting and coolest companies I discovered in my pre-NYCC research and then further at the show was Redbubble. Since the show I’ve been tracking the site when I can finding designs that truly struck my fancy and I thought would make cool T-shirts or stickers to own or in the very least wallpapers for my computer.
Redbubble is an absolutely awesome art community site,much like Flickr, Deviantart, and even Threadless, but has its own special vibe & design style that truly makes it stand out. Founded in 2006 by three artists & writers to help create a new marketplace for creative visual artists of all realms, the company has grown to feature over 200 thousand plus artists and help assist in over one million orders in nine million products ranging from shirts, stickers, iPhone cases, prints, calendars and full expanding branding for artists to stamp their visions on and see profit for their creations.
Working with various different companies to get the items printed everything is of high quality which I experienced first hand through a totebag, various stickers and a logoed shirt which have all come in very handy and have stood up to regular use.
The easiest and most exciting thing on Redbubble is its very intelligent alogorithm search engines and suggestions of new best work to find art you really love. I’ll be sharing some of that at the end, basically in my own preference, but I want to publicly thank Peter Tomassi and the entire staff at Redbubble. At NYCC they proved they don’t just run an excellent site, but can run an awesome convention booth experience. This was the first year they had brought product to the show for sale and their success blew me away. They really tried to cater to the current pop-culture fan with shirts ranging from TV, to movies, to comics, video games and basic nerd language. The booth itself was really set up greatly and the workers were totally sweet.
My favorite type of images to find on Redbubble have been the ones that mashup a popular concept with something you wouldn’t expect or that just looks at the character, person, pop culture phenom in a new way that really catches the eye. It could be a movie, cartoon, professional wrestling, TV show, actor, it doesn’t really matter, I just really like images that switch things up. There are few artists I’ve found on the site who I really like such as Lapuss and Leigh Wortley. Here’s three images I really liked on Redbubble, the first is New Mutant’s Warlock and Cyber in Calvin & Hobbes style by Leigh, the second is Fozzie Bear as Clockwork Orange’s Alex by Chris Wahl and the last is Showtime’s Dexter if it was a 1940’s WB Cartoon by Lapuss.
All three of these are available as shirts or stickers. I haven’t personally decided what to get or to get all three or to get everything on the site. It’s that awesome.
At NYCC I had the privilege to sit with actors Hank Harris, Mary Lynn Rajskub and Jamie Clayton to discuss their interactive web series DIRTY WORK, part of the very awesome and amazing Rides.TV from Fourth Wall Productions. During the talk lots of subjects were discussed from acting in a role which required a bit of a different style because of the elements involved, to the particulars of Jamie’s character and her landing the role. Mary Lynn also mentions she’ll be in the upcoming Arrested Development episodes on Netflix. Here’s hoping she got to have scenes with both her former co-stars in David Cross (on Mr. Show) AND Jeffrey Tambor (on Larry Sanders).
At the end of this I’ll be posting the video of the roundtable interview for all to see in full.
Firstly, let me just discuss RIDES.TV quickly. This internet only channel features shows of varying types and length, but all in the premise of interaction and immersion. When you provide the site your cell number, it connects when you watch a show and you’ll receive txts, images and phone calls that add to the experience with inner thoughts, voice mails, or side information that builds the plot & gives you information that now only you and another character knows but that the others don’t. It’s an innovative and exciting way to present information. What’s awesome is most of the shows can be enjoyed without that phone concept as they’re well written and very well acted. Currently the site has a motion comic/cartoon, a few dramatic/comedy shorts and a Wall of Suspense & Horror that reminds one of episodes from Twilight Zone/Tales from the Darkside. Most recently they added a short with Ethan Embry and Michael Ironside.
The series that I found most enjoyable of course was DIRTY WORK, an ensemble comedy about people who clean up after crime scenes. After that investigating and all that jazz, someone has to come in and clean up all the blood & guts not taken into evidence. So far there were only three episodes, but they are really funny 23 minute episodes with amazing bonuses and extras. All that out of the way, here’s the interview.
The future of comics is a precarious place, as print is still alive and well and should be for awhile, the digital format is making great leaps and bounds. From the advent of Comixology and its build in sales, not to mention Marvel’s success with their digital subscription, the winds of change have been blowing.
Kurt Christenson and Reilly Brown really began the rally in my eyes of what might be possible with the digital format through their comic POWER PLAY. Although Motion comics aren’t a new thing altogether. Even before Marvel started doing their motion comics, companies like Bryon Preiss Multimedia were playing with the idea of combining sound and motion in comics and during its existence Crossgen also worked on it, but the new tablet/mobile format, as well as advances in technology has pushed things to another level altogether.
Two new companies are at the forefront of the movement, MADEFIRE and NARR8 and currently both are offering their applications, as well as their associated books for free. I attempted in speaking to PR people for both companies to get a better understanding of how they got their investment capital and what type of profit return exists in terms of the future of the business, but to no avail. Saying that I did learn a lot of other things about each company and will explain why both are worth your time and quality of life to experience.
Madefire is the brainchild of marketing genius Ben Wolstenholme, founder of Moving Brands, long established comics artist Liam Sharp and Mobile Technology/Cloud Computing Guru Eugene Walden. It features some of the most well known and talented comics creators of both recent and legendary status with features that run from superhero to noir. Some of the folks involved are Dave Gibbons, Robbie Morrison, Jimmy Broxton (or James Hodgkins as rumors state), Sheperd Hendrix, Dougie Braithwaite, Angus McKie, Mike Carey and an assortment of other folks that any comic book fan truly worth their salt should at least marginally know of. The application currently features six series, my personal fave being what is also considered their lead feature, a book based in noir, horror, and war action in a wonderful pastiche of concepts from the one non comics guy on the brand, co-founder Ben Wolstenholme (although assisted by Liam). I’m also very intrigued by the Gary Erskine illustrated sci-fi story written by former video-game producer turned comics writer W. Haden Blackman tackling his first original IP. I am hoping in the future some of Blackman’s understanding of interactive entertainment may be used in Madefire’s future. The infrastructure of Madefire as a whole is actually truly fascinating. Moving Brands unsurprisingly helped a lot with the development of the product and its marketing and there’s an awesome web page dedicated to it in their portfolio.
On the other end of the spectrum NARR8 is a complete start-up full of unknown artist studios based in Russia. The website states that the founder is Alexandr Vashchenko, with the main investor being IMI.VC and naming Igor Matshyneko, the lead at IMI.VC as the CEO of NARR8. Alexandr is also the lead at one of the main arms of IMI.VC, mobile gaming company GameInsight. This suggests to me that they are all one company under the head of very creative, intelligent men and woman with headquarters in Moscow and San Francisco. At New York Comic Con I was more than fortunate to sit with the head of public relations on Narr8’s part, Alisa Faber and get a bit of a more hands on look at NARR8 and I have to admit, as much as Madefire is awesome because of it’s immense lineup of quality ,well known creators, NARR8 ups the ante in terms of interactive application and a new way of reading comics, novels and even magazines. In terms of the magazines they have a popular science magazine titled PARADIGM and a historical one called CHRONOGRAPHICS. In this issue of Paradigm, which was the first episode of season 1 (this is how they are marking issues, as episodes of a season) it showed off the optics how different animals view the world. Through an excellent combination of animation, interaction, well-written text and fantastic photography I could see how birds, butterflies, bulls, and insects among more see with an added bonus at thend of showing how each spieces would see the same exact scene. It was both fun and informative, which can equally be said of the history magazine. In the second episode of that series, the topic is a very vast look titled “Cortez and the Conquest of Mexico” which takes both a very serious look at the history, while evoking some fun with it through very clever animations. The work is broken down into date segments and almost has the feel of when reading through those historical txts in Assassin’s Creed games where you choose to emerge yourself in the world and accidentally get educated, here you choose to get educated, but also have fun while doing so. Below here’s some soundless video that shows off Paradigm and Chronographics “in action”, just to give you a small taste of the awesome available. The same work and energy went into the comics I speak of the next paragraph.
The comics I got to see were Final Feat, based in mythology and JAM, which is a mangaesque story based in Video Games and also features some awesome 8-Bit music. One of the cooler features is that when you stay on a panel long enough you’ll get to see some animation and in some cases clicking on the page will show off another interactive element. This was even more clear in the two prose features I got to scope in FEAR HUNTERS and MULTIVERSE. Multiverse actually really holds onto a tried and true concept on some of my favorite sci-fi novels, the random footnote, but displaying it through much more interesting and intriguing means, such as pop-ups or video animations within the screen itself. I am highly impressed that all this work is being developed from script, to art, to technology, music and animation as well as the proprietary engine within the Narr8 page which runs the HTML 5 data or in certain cases Unity.
Narr8 will hopefully be launching sometime soon, with over 11 titles which you should definitely check all of them out. Unfortunately at launch it will only be on iPad, but Android tablets will come next, followed by mobile and according to what I see, on the website itself as well. This last one excites me personally most, as reading comics while sitting at my desk is ideal.