Friday, August 25, 2006

More Comics in the News!

Comics continue to be making the news!

Long-time comic industry veterans Sid Jacobsen and Ernie Colon have been making the media rounds talking about their graphic novel adaptation of the 9-11 REPORT. Sid and Ernie have been on most of the morning news programs, as well as on NPR and other talk shows. Some mass market outlets have already received this book and we will be getting our copies in store soon.

If you're wondering who Sid and Ernie are--- these guys probably have close to 100 combined years experience working in comics. Sid, I believe, was he creator of RICHIE RICH for Harvey Comics back in the late '50s and was the chief editor for Marvel's STAR Comics, their '80s entry into the kids' comic book market. Ernie has worked for many publishers doing a wide variety of genres from horror to super-heroes to some work for Harvey Comics.

The 9-11 REPORT graphic novel adaptation is definitely challenging mainstream media's notions of what can be done in the medium of comics storytelling. I'm glad to see two comic industry pros of long and good standing getting some attention for their new work.

On a much more local level, storyteller Orlando Harding and his new series PARIAH are featured on the front page of the Datebook section of today's San Francisco Chronicle, in a story well written by reporter Peter Hartlaub. You can read it HERE!

It's tough for indie creators to make a go of it when DC and Marvel are cranking out tons of exciting stuff, but I like to think there's room for mavericks like Orlando. We also hope you'll take the time to check out all the independent comics we stock here at FLYING COLORS. The lesson we learned a long time ago is that readers like variety. No one goes to the ice cream store expecting they'll only have vanilla and chocolate, right? By the way, we are due to get more copies of PARIAH back in stock in a day or two, so please let us know if you'd like us to reserve them for you.

Peace 'n' Comics!


Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Look! Up in the Store! It's...the New Skyscape!

Publisher's Weekly interviewed me last week for my reaction to Marvel's announcement in the delay of CIVIL WAR and related titles. You can read the coverage
Let me know your reactions to this mini-tempest by hitting the "Comments" button, OK?

While we're waiting for the CIVIL WAR title to get back on track, there are two excellent CW-related tie-ins that hit the racks today--- NEW AVENGERS and HEROES FOR HIRE. Don't miss 'em!

Also in store, the first issue of the new JUSTICE LEAGUE of AMERICA (no abbreviations this time!) by New York Times' best-selling author BRAD MELTZER (2005's IDENTITY CRISIS). WONDER WOMAN #2, another late title also shows up today---and like CIVIL WAR will be when it finally shows, this title is worth the wait.

Also form DC, the ABSOLUTE DARK KNIGHT over-sized hardcover is here---and with the requests we've been getting for this one, we suggest you put it in your "buy" pile soon.

ITEM: Some of you have noticed---and I've pointed it out to others, but there's a new addition here at FLYING COLORS. It's the new FLYING COLORS' skyline and spacescape spanning the more than 40 feet width of our store.
Be here soon for all the Cool Stuff!



Wednesday, August 16, 2006

TRUE STORY: Power Pop & Comics!

If you've seen the Flying Colors' TV spot featuring my daughter Jenny, you already know that she's ready to recommend lots of great comics to girls who might be reluctant to jump into the comics' scene on their own. 

Jenny's two favorite recommendations for women are Terry Moore's long-running series STRANGERS IN PARADISE and Tom Beland's funny and quirky romance called TRUE STORY SWEAR TO GOD!

Tom stopped by the store today (with the drawing you see here) to thank Jenny for promoting his work, not only in TRUE STORY, but also the two Spider-Man stories Tom has had published by Marvel Comics over the last year. I echo Jenny's recommendations of Tom's entertaining, funny and heartfelt stories! TRUE STORY moves to Image Comics with its next issue and you can bet it'll be more popular than ever.


As a huge fan of Power Pop--- the style of music first coined by Pete Townsend of the Who, and invented by that band and others like the Beatles, the Kinks, the Beach Boys, the Raspberries and Big Star, it's always a kick to see where Power Pop will show up. Power pop features soaring melodies, crunchy guitars and layered harmonies that will remind you of the best days listening to music on AM radio. or maybe it'll remind you of the great days lisstening to latter day power poppers like the Replacements, REM, the Bangles and Cheap Trick!

I've long thought that the connection between power pop and comics is a strong one--- both are now promulgated mostly by independent artists, fighting the tide against the forces of MTV and the self-fulfilling prophecy of the Buggles' "Video Killed the Radio Star." This week, in DC Comics' MANHUNTER #25, I've spotted another fan of power pop in series writer Marc Andreyko who features power poppers THE 88 in the new MANHUNTER issue.

Since we occcasionally play THE 88 here on the FLYING COLORS' sound system-- and we also feature a stellar selection of power pop CDs from NOT LAME RECORDINGS, the prime purveyor of pop music on-line. Check 'em out HERE! There's probably a sound sample or two from The 88...

And while you're at it, check out MANHUNTER from DC COMICS. It's a good read with plenty of action to go along with engaging characters. And hey, with CIVIL WAR delayed for a few weeks, it's a good opportunity to read something new!

Peace 'n' Pop 'n' Comics!


Thursday, August 10, 2006

FLYING COLORS in the news...

Check out the front page of today’s San Francisco Chronicle for another excellent feature by CW (Chuck) Nevius, this one’s about the fall of the sportscards speculation market.

You can read it HERE

I still really enjoy baseball cards---mostly because I LOVE baseball--- and have a decent collection of my two favorite teams, the A’s and the Giants (yes, one can love both teams!), and my collection has cards that go back to the ‘50s. Love the ’67 Willie McCovey pictured here. I was eleven in ’67, so that really was my personal golden age…

Actually, I have a card or two from the late 1930s featuring my great-uncle Joe Bowman (and if you haven’t read my blog entry about him, “The Uncle Joe I Didn’t Know”, it explains the origins of my life-long addiction to America’s #1 sport).

If there’s something I want readers of the Chron article to take away, it’s that the value of collecting sportscards isn’t in impossible-to-realize financial gains from selling recent vintage sportscards. The value is in extending one’s enjoyment of the sport---and happily, that’s what I’m seeing from most baseball card buyers over the last year or two.

We took part in the National Baseball Card Day back in June and our turn-out wasn’t great, so we still have some of the giveaway packs. If you’d like one, mention this blog next time you’re in FLYING COLORS and we’ll give you one for FREE! (Limit one per person while supply lasts, blah, blah, blah…)

Also in the news, one of the panels I moderated at the San Diego Comic-Con got some coverage at the comic news site “PULSE”. It’s a short-hand version of some of what I (and my fellow retailers, along with Diamond good guy Dave Hawksworth) had to say about starting a comic book store. We had a full room, easily more than 150 in attendance, including Kate Keller from Sequential Tart, who did the Pulse piece.
You can read it

Just remember, these are really *notes* of what was said more than actual *quotes*, so if you have specific questions you’d like answered, you can always call or e-mail me. I’m open to doing some consulting for new comic shop retailers, but just remember, the first call is free, so if you really need a chunk of my time while you’re trying to get a new store off the ground, I do ask for a consulting fee.

Comic-Con was amazing, but it was also exhausting for me---as evidenced by this being my first new blog entry since the end of that monster show. In retrospect, I honestly wish I had more time to be a fan there---I was so wrapped up in running retailer programming and doing other behind-the-scenes meetings, that I didn’t get much of a chance to see Comic-Con. Next year, it’ll be different!

Peace, y’all---