PCR past banners Now in our fifth calendar year
PCR #229  (Vol. 5, No. 33)  This edition is for the week of August 9--15, 2004.

LA FLORIDIANA
Book Review: “Florida's Miracle Strip: From Redneck Riviera to Emerald Coast” by Tim Hollis
 by Will Moriaty
THIS WEEK'S MOVIE REVIEW
"Collateral"
 by Mike Smith
ODDSERVATIONS
Headline '89: "Grindhouse Cinema Fans Storm Tampa Theater"
 by Andy Lalino
COUCH POTATO
Happy Birthday, Nolan!....Doom 3, It Was Worth The Wait
  by Vinnie Blesi
SPLASH PAGE
Tampa Comic & Toy Convention
 by Brandon Jones
MATT'S RAIL
In Honor of the Nol-Meister....Bush Speak
 by Matt Drinnenberg
MIKE'S RANT
Happy Birthday....Movie Lines....Movie News....Next, Please....Passing On....Meet The Beatles, Part 29
 by Mike Smith
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TAMPA COMIC & TOY CONVENTION

HAL JORDAN’S RETURN, ETHAN VAN SCIVER & LIFE AWAY FROM MARVEL

Late October, about two weeks before the next Tampa Convention, there will be the debut of Green Lantern: Rebirth. Artist Ethan Van Sciver (mostly recently on The New X-Men) teams with writer Geoff Johns (Flash, JSA, Teen Titans) to deliver what fans have lobbied for – Hal Jordan’s REAL return. (Yes, it would take too long to explain what I mean by “real.”) Johns and Van Sciver worked together on Flash: Iron Heights, so there’s a good history there. In a recent interview, Johns has this to say:

Ethan Van Sciver
Ethan Van Sciver
“We’re out to tell a killer story utilizing the Green Lantern mythology. There will be a lot of surprises, a lot of curve balls, some major revelations and some amazing artwork. Ethan’s pages are spectacular.”

So I was excited to talk to Ethan again (as I did in Splash Page, PCR #211) as I reflected on our conversation about working The New X-Men with Grant Morrision and how it’s different at DC.

The media readily reveals the dark manipulative dealings in the television and motion picture industries, but the skeletons usually remain in the Comic Exec’s closets. Ethan, unfortunately, doesn’t look back fondly of his days at Marvel.

How is DC better? “Money, nicer people, more creative freedoms where you’re not constantly second-guessed,” Van Sciver explained. He went on to relay a story where DC has sent him a royalty check for a thumbnail-sized sketch that found it’s way into a recent sticker book. Marvel on the other hand, uses loopholes to reduce payouts for full page that has been reduced to “clip art”.

Jacob Jones and Spider-Man
Jacob Jones, 8, can shoot webs with the best of them!
The royalties from sales are based on a standard threshold: DC has a higher threshold at 50,000 copies compared to Marvel’s 40,000. Marvel, however, retains the monies from Worldwide sales which includes the lucrative Euro market. Van Sciver was a frustrated creator to say the least.

When I asked about his favorite comics, he described the book that “got him into comics” – Fantastic Four vs. The X-Men (the 1987 Chris Clairmont story was drawn by John Bogdanove, who Ethan has followed since). He confesses how he was drawn into the weirdness and mystery then said: “I loved the dream sequence. I’m a sucker for dream sequences.” Chris Clairmont has that effect on a lot of readers.

Van Sciver continues by citing classic Steve Ditko (particularly Amazing Spider-Man # 17), Kirby and Lee on Fantastic Four – he’s obviously a lifetime fan of the Marvel universe. So, it’s hard to hear the horror stories of Marvel behind the scenes, even though Ethan says: “…Joe Quesada always treated me well, but I’d never go back there unless there’s a regime change."

Well Ethan, DC is lucky to have you and we can only hope that Marvel figures out to treat their creators better.

BEATTY PURSUES OTHER DREAMS

John Beatty
John Beatty
After twenty years, the grind of monthly deadlines wears on anyone and the comic industry is no exception. For John Beatty, that “grind” included stints creating superhero icons Captain America, Batman and the Punisher – all of John’s favorites.

So what now? How about working closer to home, trying something new and still enjoying your work? That’s John Beatty.

An ad in the paper served up the options that Jon had been seeking. Living in or near Daytona means Harley Davidsons and a plethera of opportunities to use John’s artistic talent. TV shirt designs for Bike Week and Biketoberfest will keep him busy in the near future, but there’s also commissions from his web site (Actually check out the “Big Blogs Weekly” for comments from John):

http://www.bigbeatty.com/

He still dabbles in comics (recently inked Steve Murphy’s story in the Tales of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), indulges the convention crowd, so I look forward to getting some stories about the days behind the desk at the DC and Marvel and of course, one of those Harley shirts.

Good luck John.

NEW 21st CENTURION RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER & FEMFORCE TURNS 20!

Mark Heike group shot
Foreground, L to R: Mark Heike and Stephanie Sanderson-Heike. In back, L to R: Brandon Jones, Jacob Jones.
Mark Heike and Stephanie Sanderson-Heike were on hand to give us a couple of great updates.

Stephanie is the brainchild of 21st Centurion, which debuted last year, and expects to see issue #2 in 2005. The self-published comic binds a Golden Age style with a lot more emotions on a sort of cyber-punk environment. There was great feedback from the prequel issue #0, so I can’t wait to see more.

AC Comics, which Mark said is the fourth oldest publisher behind DC, Marvel & Archie, delivers the increasingly popular Femforce. With this fall’s issue #130, will be the 20th anniversary of the all-female team. The legend C. Bradford Gorby will be scribing the 40-page tale. With rumors of Femforce going live action, expect big things from this team.

Check out more at: www.acccomics.com

OTHER CONVENTION NOTES

For info on the November 14th convention and more:

www.comicbookconventions.com/tampaconvention

Scheduled at the November convention is Noel Neill, Lois Lane from the classic Superman TV series.

NEXT WEEK PART 2: More on the convention, particularly Alex Saviuk on Web of Spider-Man, Austin Janowsky and feedback and hot lists from some of the retailers.



"Splash Page" is ©2004 by Brandon Jones.   Webpage design and all graphics herein (except where otherwise noted) are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2004 by Nolan B. Canova.