The Big Crossover

beaty_unpop.jpgAs a long-time reader and fan of Bart Beaty’s Comics Journal column, “Euro-Comics for Beginners”, today continued as “Conversational Euro-Comics” at Tom Spurgeon’s Comics Reporter, I have been looking forward to Beaty’s book on the new wave of European comics since I first heard he was working on it, several years ago. Now it is here, it is called Unpopular Culture : Transforming the European Comic Book in the 1990s, and it does not disappoint, though it raises a number of interesting and somewhat problematic questions.

Only a few, if any, people besides Beaty could have written this panoramic survey of the development of the comics medium in Europe over the last decade-and-a-half. As someone who has followed the scene with great interest, and even published on it : and also experienced Beaty in the flesh on several occasions : I can whole-heartedly vouch for his commitment, knowledge and critical acumen in this area.

Arrivederci, Maestro

The clip above is taken from L’Eclisse (1962), showing the place where the lovers (Alain Delon and Monica Vitti) are supposed to meet – but alas, they don’t, and thus the camera has to film something else. 100% Antonioni, don’t fight it – feel it.

Michelangelo Antonioni 1912-2007 RIP

Hype: Norske serier i Morgenbladet

fior_ikaros.jpgEndnu et public service announcement til særligt vore norske læsere. I denne uges udgave af Morgenbladet, har undertegnede anmeldt en håndfuld norske serier fra det forgangne år.

Det drejer sig som Jasons Jeg drepte Hitler, Lene Asks Hitler, Jesus og Farfar, Bendik von Kaltenborns Seks sultne menn, Manuele Fiors Ikaros (hvorfra billedet til venstre er hentet), samt Steffen Kverneland og Lars Fiskes første bind af Kanon.

‘Go, read’: Spurge interviews Dr. Beaty

Today, there’s a great and lenghty interview with leading Euro-comics critic Bart Beaty, conducted by Comics Reporter’s awesome OMAC Tom Spurgeon. The interview deals with Bart the Man (there’s even a photo showing parts of Bart’s huge library of comics) but also with topics from his recent book Unpopular Culture: Transforming the European Comic Book in the 1990s, hyped here on the Bunker some time ago. Tom Spurgeon is great. Bart Beaty is great. What are you waiting for? Go read!

Tour de France: When the Second Best Man Becomes the Best (Or: Showdown in Angoulême)

Yesterday, Spanish Boy Wonder Alberto Contador won the Tour de France. The time trail from Cognac to comics capital of the world, Angoulême, was in reality the last chance to change the top in the general classification (GC). Indeed, this was an exciting time trail, in which the three leading riders rode as though they were fleeing from the Devil himself (or perhaps just from the scandals of the Tour?). Discovery Channel’s Levi Leipheimer beat everyone, but his competitors Cadel Evans and fellow Discovery rider Contador rode spectacularly as well, leaving the top of the GC unchanged.

So, later today, Contador will be celebrated on Champs-Élysées, standing on top of the podium, next to Cadel Evans and Levi Leipheimer. Did the best man win? As a commentator on Danish network TV-2 noted: “Yes. If you’re prepared to accept the fact that the man on top of the podium is the second best“. Rasmussen-gate will probably haunt Contador’s victory in the years to come.

Twenty-Five Years Later – Updated!

This year, it was 25 years ago that the modern classic Blade Runner first flashed across the silver screen. Just in time for the anniversary, the film has emerged from years of copyright limbo and it has finally become possible for director Ridley Scott to finish a final cut of the film that matches his original vision — as he sees it today – as closely as possible. Blade Runner: The Final Cut comes out in October, but unfortunately won’t see theatrical release, though special screenings will be held in New York and LA, so copies for cinematic presentation will at least exist — important when one takes into consideration the film’s enduring life in theatres worldwide since its original release in 1982.

The official release, however, will be on HD & Blueray DVD, in five different sets (image here), the most complete of which will include all existing versions of the film, except the so-called ‘San Diego Preview’ but including the hallowed, elusive ‘Workprint’ (click here for an overview of the different versions) – which includes a good deal of other material that didn’t make it into the theatrically released versions – as well as copious amounts of extra material, including a comprehensive documentary on the film. This is, of course, great news to all Blade Runner afficionados, but one cannot but worry a little that Scott has tampered too much with it, negating some of the imperfections that made the old Blade Runner magic.

Hype: De Freston & Foulds

Just wanted to plug the blog of one of last year’s students here at Cambridge, Tom de Freston and his friend Andrew Foulds. They are both painters and have now started a blog showcasing their work all the while providing a forum for their thoughts on art and such. There’s some good work there – Tom has an acute sense of saturated, rich colour that I dig. Above is reproduced a riff on Titian’s Danae. Check it out.

Mangismo i betalingsstandsning

Mangaforlaget Mangismo meddeler på sin hjemmeside, at forlaget er gået i betalingsstandsning. Forlaget forhandler i øjeblikket med mulige købere, og mener at et salg er sandsynligt. Dermed vil bl.a Hellsing, Samurai Deeper Kyo og Kare First Love fortsætte med at udkomme, så læserne ikke bliver ofre for forlagets økonomiske problemer. I øjeblikket er der dog udgivelsesstop på samtlige serier, gældende for både Danmark, Norge og Sverige.

Her på Metabunkeren håber vi på den bedst mulige udgang på den meget triste situation. En ærgerlig udgang på et ellers meget spændende forlagsprojekt.

Hype: Simon interviewer Kim Fupz!

fupz.jpgI seneste udgave af sin klumme på Seriejournalen har Simon Petersen scoret sig lidt af et scoop – eller måske rettere: han har tænkt i baner de fleste andre danske tegneseriejournalister har forsømt – og taget kontakt til den frafaldne blad- og serietegner og nuværende filmmanuskriptmaskine Kim Fupz Aakeson. Man kunne godt ønske sig, at Simon havde brugt lidt mere tid på interviewet, men i det mindste har han lavet det. Og det er cool. Læs det.