nenena: (lord krsna)
18 Days is available on Amazon for a sweet discounted price of only $17 for a hardcover edition with 120 pages of Mukesh Singh artgasm. A 47-page preview is available for free on Scribd.

I am looking forward to enjoying the Mukesh Singh artwork almost as much as I am looking forward to laughing really, really hard at the "Grant Morrison writes about the Mahabharata" sections of the book. Actual quotes from the preview pages:

Snark behind cut. )

Meh, enough snark for now. The artwork by Mukesh Singh is OH MY GOD ABSFUCKINGLUTELY MINDBLOWINGLY GORGEOUS and makes the entire book worthwhile, especially if you ignore the pages full of Grant Morrison's braindroppings.

Wait, that book was listed on Amazon all the way back in July?! How did I miss that until now?! Oh yeah, the semester from hell. That's why.

Meanwhile! The Liquid Comics website is showing new artwork for Ramayan 3392 AD in several places (check out the front page and the Ramayan gallery under "Titles"), yet no new issues are available on either the Liquid website or on Scribd. Hmmm. Yet Liquid is apparently finishing some of Virgin's unfinished projects, as Buddha was finally completed last summer and is now available in graphic novel format.

Liquid is releasing all of the old Virgin titles on more digital devices now. For the iPad, you can now get the entire Ramayan 3392 series for $9.99, some parts of Reloaded for free, and all five issues of The Tall Tales of Vishnu Sharma for $4.99. Of course you can still download good old-fashioned PDFs of all of the previous titles plus the entire rest of Liquid's line from their Scribd website and import the comics to your e-reader that way, too. ;) Which is how I got Devi on my iPad right now.

UNIVERSAL FORMATS: DOIN' IT RIGHT. Thank you, Virgin/Liquid! Manga publishers, are you paying attention?!

Speaking of Virgin Comics alums, Abhishek Singh is up to awesomeness, with art shows in New Delhi and Los Angeles.
nenena: (Devi - Isana)
Robot6 on the new Viz Manga iPad app:

Of the five launch series, only Death Note has adult appeal, so the success of the others will depend on teenagers having access to an iPad — and a credit card, since you buy the comics in-app, not through the iTunes store. [...] If I were running Viz, I would put a couple of their Viz Signature series on there as well: 20th Century Boys, Naoki Urasawa’s Pluto, Fumi Yoshinaga’s Ooku, or the foodie manga Oishinbo. Or maybe Takehiko Inoue’s Vagabond, a sophisticated manga that is up to 31 volumes and would be less cumbersome on the iPad than in print. Despite the fact that they are very good manga with adult appeal, none of these series sells well; the iPad might be where they find their audience — after all, the average iPad user is closer to 30 than 13.


Meanwhile, Yen Press is going to launch their own iPad app "in the coming weeks". But the GanGan Online iPad launch has been pushed back from November 1st to November 4th, darnit. And the Soul Eater content will be limited to textless cover illustrations and "bonus material," at least to start with. So no new SE chapters on my iPad. :(

I finally have an iPad now (yes, I gave in and bought a used from a co-worker) and so far it has proved stunningly useless to me, as most of the digital comics that I'm interested in reading are only available in Flash format (HI THERE EVERY SINGLE JAPANESE PUBLISHER AND THE ENTIRETY OF LIQUID COMICS), which of course does not work on the damn iPad.
nenena: (lord krsna)
First, via Saurav Mohapatra's blog!

The complete India Authentic comic book series is now available on scribd, including the never-before-published Krishna issue. The series on scribd has been retitled "Myths of India" for some reason, but whatever. The Ganesha issue is free, and other issues are one dollar per download. Unfortunately, I don't think that scribd downloads are available to customers outside the US, but maybe you can use an anonymizer to get around that?

So it looks like Liquid Comics is putting ALL of Virgin's old series on scribd, including Ramayan 3392 AD, that Kshatriya comic that never got published, The Tall Tales of Vishnu Sharma, Mumbai MacGuffin, and of course Devi. And a bunch of other titles too, but really those are the good ones. In my humble opinion. The big question, though, is are any of these titles going to be continued in digital format?! I seriously doubt it, but I'm going to keep dreaming of a Devi continuation anyway. Because that's my dream and I'm sticking to it.

Oh, and in case you're new here and you missed all of the artgasms and asskickery and post-apocalyptic questing and metafictional minderfuckery that Virgin Comics brought us three years ago, well, here's your chance to make up for it!

And now for something completely unrelated: Your Soul Eater Moment of Zen.

From YumeIchigo

Thank you, anonymous puppy. I needed that to wash the bad taste of Chapter 75 out of my mouth.
nenena: (Devi versus Bala)
Saumin Patel, Ashish Padlekar, Yogesh Chandekar, and others are uploading illustrated short horror stories to The Feast, for those of you who are interested.

Patel has a preview of his illustrations for "The Owl" on his blog here! (PS - The blog header image is NSFW, but oh so fabulous.)
nenena: (Devi versus Bala)
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is doin' an Indian comic book art exhibit this fall, and also sponsoring a "create your own superhero" contest at the same time.

I am awesome'd by the fact that the artwork shown on the LACMA blog post is none other than Saumin Patel's rendering of Devi pwning Bala. The same scene that this icon is from, no less. :)

Icon meme.

Jul. 12th, 2009 09:04 pm
nenena: (W.I.T.C.H. - Irma rocks)
1. Reply to this post with 'Icons!', and I will pick five of your icons.
2. Make a post (including the meme info) and talk about the icons I chose.
3. Other people can then comment to you and make their own posts.
4. This will - allegedly - create a never-ending cycle of icon glee.

And here are the five that [ profile] evil_authoress picked for me! Behind the cut. )

As an aside... I think I must be going senile in my old age, because I swear swear swear that I remember doing this same meme once before, possibly months ago. But I searched back through my journal using my own tags, and I absolutely couldn't find the post. Maybe I just hallucinated doing it...? I distinctly remember being asked to write about this icon, and explaining that it was a birthday present from [ profile] poisonangel7, and about how awesome Anissina is. Aaaah, this is driving me crazy! Maybe I accidentally deleted the relevant post, somehow...?

Edit: Never mind, I found it! My eyes must have skipped over it several times when I was searching. Derrrrr.
nenena: (Devi versus Bala)
You can now read Amar Chitra Katha comics online. They're available in Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Telugu and Kannada. As of yesterday the website was also advertising English comics available in the online reader, but it doesn't look like there are any (yet). You have to pay for each issue, which grants you thirty days of access, and it doesn't appear that there's any offer of permanent downloads. Hmmm, I don't think that model worked very well for other websites, but we'll see. And anyway the Story of the Week is free! Oh and they're planning to launch an online encyclopedia of Indian culture. That seems interesting.

And hey, Saumin Patel has a blog!!!! Check out these two posts from an upcoming animated movie that's apparently tied to Virgin Animation... And thus may or may not actually happen. (*weeps*) And a collaboration with Ashok Banker that also never happened. (*weeps again*) Oh and his original design for Avni from Devi.

BTW, was it perhaps Saumin Patel who was responsible for the character designs for Virgin's totally-never-happened Ramayan cartoon?

Random and unrelated: This is the greatest scans_daily post EVER. Even better than cross-dressing My Little Ponies and girl!Jesus.

In less happy news, BITCH Magazine needs your help. Guys, this magazine is really really awesome. Please please please donate a few dollars if you can.

Tonights scheduled Scanspam Week post may or may not happen, pending laptop death rattles.
nenena: (Mahabrooks - liek omg OT3)
Virgin Comics to drastically scale back their actual comics.

This makes me a sad puppy because I suspect that they're going to cut back on their actual good titles and focus on their celebrity-backed stuff instead. :(

I also fear that Devi might be canceled. I actually had that suspicion when I picked up the fourth trade last month. At the back of the trade, in the extras section, there are two gorgeous color paintings by Dean Ruben Hyrapiet and Jeffrey Spokes. The Hyrapiet painting depicts a new and yet-unknown character behind Devi. Both of the paintings are obviously comic covers. But I couldn't figure out why Virgin would put two future comic covers in the back of a trade collection... Unless these were destined to be "unused" comic covers. And now I can't imagine that Virgin would actually pass on either a Hyrapiet or a Spokes cover unless the Devi comics had been cancelled altogether.

Devi has been published steadily, every month, since Virgin launched. Until recently. Since there are no new solicits coming up, and no announced plans for any future issues...

Things look bad.

Mmmm. I wonder how Ramayan will fare. Now that the story has taken a delirious turn toward Rama for some reason being more concerned about rescuing a kidnapped chain-smoking monkey prince than he is about rescuing his super-powered girlfriend... Now I gotta see where this is going. Hopefully not into yaoi doujinshi territory.

Oh well. Regardless of what happens next, was anyone really surprised by this? I mean, I'm not an industry insider, just an armchair quarterback. But I know a little something about comics readers, er, being one myself. And I know that:

1. Comic readers will only put up with mediocrity if they have a twenty-year history with and beloved childhood memories of the franchise. Hence, Messiah Complex can be the biggest pile of shit that I've read all year (and it was), but still sell a gajillion copies (including some bought by moi), because readers are deeply invested in the world and the characters. But getting readers to spend their money and invest their emotions in a new comic book series? Unless it's freakin' spectacular (and Devi so totally is), that's unlikely to happen. And y'know, I don't care if you're the Most Innovative Comics Company Ever or whatever, not all of your series are going to be great, or even good. Law of averages. There are only so many Shakespeares and Picassos to go around.

2. You can have truly great titles that are beloved by critics and bloggers (India Authentic, The Tall Tales of Vishnu Sharma, and Buddha) and still not sell many copies of them. Sucks, but that's the way it's always been.

3. It probably didn't help things, though, that you lost street cred right away by being so upfront about your intention to use your comics as springboards for movie and TV deals. If you don't value your own comics - if you only see them as stepping stones to something more lucrative - then why are we to assume that you will invest anything other than a mediocre effort into them? Also, comic fans are an insular, prickly lot. We don't like Clueless Outsiders, we don't like anybody who smells like they're only latching onto comics as a "trend," and we especially don't like anyone who seems more interested in making money than in making actual comics. Now, you might not be any of those things, but a few misspoken words, or a little bit too much honesty about your marketing plan, and you will instantly become all of those things in the minds of fans.

"You" in the preceeding being a reference to the Chopra Duo and other Powers That Be, as opposed to the actual writers and artists working for Virgin, who were clearly in it for the love of comics, and that showed through. But they were undermined when Gotham and Deepak went around mouthing off about how they primarily wanted to turn those comics into movies/TV. Way to undermine the reputation of your own talent, guys.

4. It probably didn't help things that your CMO behaved like an asshat in public.

5. Fans have long memories.

This is what your Friendly Neighborhood Armchair Quarterback thinks: Fans have limited funds, and it's always an uphill battle to get them to spend money on something new, no matter how good said new comic may be, especially when you're competing against 20- or 30-year love affairs with Marvel and DC. Fandom Financial Inertia is a powerful and terrible force to behold, capable of slaying even the most carefully planned, innovative, creative, "mistake"-free young businesses. But! Virgin clearly did make some mistakes. That probably hurt them in the end, too.

Still, this makes me immensely sad. If not for Virgin, I would never have been introduced to Samit Basu, Saurav Mohapatra, Mukesh Singh, Ashish Padlekar, Harshvardhan Kadam, Abhishek Singh, Shamik Dasgupta, or any of the amazing artists who have worked on India Authentic. I really really hope that Virgin doesn't axe their Indian titles, because so far it's been such a great source of amazing, vibrant new talent.

Sigh. Very sad.

Edited to add: Oh hey look, comments at The Beat now include Jameson-bashing, complete with two sleazy jokes and counting. Arrrrrrrgh. Sometimes I just hate people. I really do.

I also do not regret that the Tweety Effect works really, really strongly on me. Apparently. That probably explains a lot.

Edit the Second: "Scale back" was apparently an understatement. Aw, crap.
nenena: (Default)
First! wants YOU to a) enter contests and b) submit writing and/or artwork for our upcoming newsletter. Or at the very least, please spread the word as far and as wide as you can. We're hoping to get a diverse group of contributors submitting content for the newsletter. Hopefully.

Second! Me blathering about comics. Anyway, here are a bunch of short comicly reviews, all from Virgin's Shakti line.

Ramayan, India Authentic, Project: Kalki, Devi, and Kshatriya. )
nenena: (KKM - Smooth move)
I am in America OH MY GOD. Tomorrow I have been promised fifteen whole minutes at an actual real American comic book store OH MY GOD. And I am obviously largely MIA from the internet, but I will pause to squee a bit about two new Virgin series that were just plugged in their newsletter.

Project: Kalki has finally been revealed after quite a lot of teasing. Here is the AWESOME-SOUNDING PLOT:

Project: Kalki is a horror/science fiction story called by Comic Book Resources an "example of a mythological world that transcends geographic boundaries," which tells the story of a maniacal man who hires a geneticist to clone the DNA of a ancient Indian God to usher in the destruction of the world.

So basically, zombie Krishna clones.

Repeat: zombie Krishna clones.

Again: zombie Krishna clones.

It's... It's like they're writing comics just for me. Wow.

Aaaaaaaand this one flew under the radar until now:

Beyond, an original science fiction story by Deepak Chopra and adapted by Ron Marz (Green Lantern, Star Wars), follows a brutal physical and spiritual journey of a desperate husband searches for his missing wife while on vacation in India. His quest propels him across dimensions and into realms beyond anything he could possible imagine to reclaim that which is most important to him... his wife and his sanity. Click here to take a look at the trailer.

Mmm, looks okay. I may or may not check it out, depending on budgeting. I'd be all over it in an instant if the otherwise cliché setup were gender-reversed. Because such is the nature of clichés: they're only interesting when they're subverted.

Oh, and as long as I'm fangirling Virgin: Mukesh Singh has been nominated for a Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award. (The complete list of nominees is here.) Also nominated is Barry Deutsch for Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword, which I haven't read yet, but which I'm dying to read due to Rachel's review.
nenena: (Default)
[54] Devi icons.

Nothing fancy, because the artwork speaks for itself.

I has a flaming sword. )

Scans that I used to make these, because I feel like sharing: Part One | Part Two

That's a bunch of random - but totally awesome - pages from Devi #1 through #17.

It was really, really hard to find icon-able panels of some characters, particularly Kratha and Avni.

...Why yes, I did order the first issue of the Devi/Witchblade crossover. As it combines something that I love (Devi) with something that I absolutely can't stand (Witchblade), I'm more curious that ever to see how this is going to turn out.

Edited to add: Oh, hell. Virgin, you suck. :( Way to go with the terrible PR there. Here's a hint, Mr. Lieberman: You want prominent comics bloggers at your party. You want to schmooze with them and impress them, especially if they've said critical things about your business model. A party is a chance for you to win over the bloggers and journalists, yes, even those who have criticized you. I mean, holy hell. How much dumber can a "Chief Marketing Officer" get?!

Edited again, many moons after the fact: I have a folder full of high-res scans from the final issues of Devi, and from the Devi/Witchblade crossover, that I had intended to turn into icons eventually. I don't think that I'll ever get around to making said icons, however, but I don't want the pretty scans to go to waste, either! Hence I am releasing my folder o'scans into the wild, just in case anybody else wants to use them as fodder for icons or whatever.

Here is a preview of the scans available:

Preview Image.

Click here to download these scans in a zip file.

nenena: (Default)
First, a big woot to Virgin Comics for having titles and creators nominated in multiple categories for the 2008 Eagle Awards. And a shocking observation: None of the titles or creators from Virgin's Shakti line have been nominated yet. You know, the Shakti line? The series of fantastic titles with Indian creators that Virgin launched with? Yeah. Guys, this is a crying shame. Because seriously, India Authentic and Devi are the best two things that I have in my longbox right now. And Virgin is probably the only mainstream comic house out there that's really truly been a champion of bringing more diverse artists and writers into the fold. FORTUNATELY, you can still submit write-in nominations for the Eagle Awards, until March 22nd. You can submit nominations based on any works published in the US and Canada during 2007.

SO. I'm going to be writing in nominations for Saurav Mohapatra and some of the India Authentic artists. How about you? In case you aren't reading India Authentic, here's what you're missing. )

So. The Eagle Awards. I think these folks deserve some nominations, don't you?

EDITED TO ADD: And now we've got Follow-up!
nenena: (Default)
January releases.

Panchatantra oh fuck yes FINALLY. I've been looking forward to this series since it was first pimped, like, a gajillion years ago, with the title "End of Story." I was afraid that it had been quietly cancelled. But apparently not. Hooray!

Kartikkeya. Hooray!

New Devi storyline. Hooray!

The Stranded:

Over the past two years, Virgin Comics has become the hottest new destination for graphic storytelling. At the same time, SciFi has established itself as THE brand name for fantasy and speculative television, with hit series like EUREKA and BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. Now, for the first time, these two companies join forces for a new imprint designed to change the face of science fiction entertainment.In THE STRANDED, the first Virgin/SciFi book, five ordinary people must face a terrifying question: What if your entire world — your childhood, your family, all your memories — was a lie? For The Stranded, it’s true; they’re all, secretly, from another world. And now a deadly, otherworldly force has returned to try and kill them, operating through a twisted, altered human called Janus. Their only hope: Tamree, a dark, mysterious woman sent to Earth as their protector. One by one, Tamree must awaken the buried memories of The Stranded — along with their powerful, unique psychic and physical abilities. But even if they can defeat Janus, they must also deal with a deadly threat from one of their own.

Um. There is nothing about that storyline that sounds particularly "destined to change the face of science fiction entertainment." Not to say that it doesn't sound good, but it doesn't sound ground-breakingly original either.

Mmmm. I want to read these, but there is a huge unfinished pile (like 200+) of Amar Chitra Katha comics sitting beside my TV, screaming, "Nenena, read me! Nenena, add me to the batshit insane CBDB AKC Project! Nenena, stop being so lazy!"
nenena: (Default)
I've been so distracted with cleaning out my house this week that I almost forgot to post about the two comic book ladies who have made my month.

Behind the cut. So NOT happy for dialup, sorry. )

Edit 11/16/2011: Comments disabled due to spambot attacks.
nenena: (Default)
As much as I deeply heart Virgin Comics, they do have this annoyingly sexist thread that runs throughout all of their publicity material, from their website to their press releases about the upcoming Jenna Jameson comic.
I can assure you every artist we have in our studio is vying to get assigned to this project!

Wink wink, nudge nudge.

Virgin certainly isn't immune to publishing offensively stupid comics - witness The Sadhu, with its delicious racism cake and creamy sexism frosting. But Virgin has also proven capable of handling (even deliberately hypersexualized) heroines in a very respectful, non-objectified way - witness Devi and Snakewoman. I mean, Snakewoman could practically be a textbook on how to write an extraordinarily sexualized heroine who (gasp!) is portrayed as a subject with agency, rather than an objectified piece of meat. So I won't brush off the Jameson comic until I've given it a chance... But nothing about the press release, the story description, the cover artwork, or Jenna Jameson's previous track record with comics looks particularly promising.

I'll be over here in a corner reading Devi, Snakewoman, and Walk-In for my fix of awesome heroines from Virgin, thank you very much. Oh, and Ramayan for the beefcake, too.

Speaking of which, I haven't ordered my every-couple-of-months batch of Virgin comics in, well, a couple of months. Ah, but I have too much reading material piled in front of me right now, and am about to ship off on a long vacation, and my tiny Japanese village post office HATES having to hold my mail for me! (Yeah, I'm the annoying gaijin who keeps getting all of these shipments of books and comics from overseas and then is never at home to sign for said packages.)
nenena: (Default)
The Frivolous

Via [ profile] tricianna: Harry Potter recipes. Yum.

Via [ profile] fanthropology: Professional authors present alternative Harry Potter endings.

Via fandom_lounge: Play-by-play spoilers for the entirety of Deathly Hollows. For those of you who want spoilers but don't want to squint through the leaked copy of the book. Even for those of you who a) don't want to read the leaked copy or b) intend to wait until Saturday, I still recomment this link for after-Saturday viewing. Why? Because [ profile] theanapirate is flippin' hilarious and her play-by-play of Deathly Hollows is EPIC. EPIC, I tell you. (Note: This post is flocked to the [ profile] spoil_me_dh community, so you'll have to join to view it.)

The Non-Frivolous

A 'Pimp Your Favorite CoC' meme for International Blog Against Racism Week. Announced early to give people time to prepare. Now I finally have that motivation to write a post about Devi's Tara that I've had sitting on my computer for, like, forever.

Take Action for the Jena Six. Seriously, you guys. It only takes a minute.
nenena: (Default)
Well, it may have taken him an entire month to type out his brilliant response, but Mad Thinker Scott has brilliantly and succinctly responded to an argument that I never made. Now, one cannot comment on Scott's blog without a Yahoo!360 account, and where's the fun in that? I thought that I would continue the discussion over here in my livejournal, where anybody can comment and contribute, regardless of whether they have an LJ account or not. Party in my livejournal, and you're all invited!

But in response to Scott... First, I'm boggled at the continued point-missing. I think in my post I made it pretty clear that a) I have nothing against sexy women or exposed skin in comics, and b) I don't care what you put in your porn, porn is great! What I DO have a problem with is a) objectifying, degrading images of women in comics that are often mistakenly confused for sexy, and b) getting porn splashed all over comic books rated as appropriate for ages nine and up.

Most importantly, regardless of how degrading imagery affects potential male rapists or not, it has been proven to be extremely harmful to girls and women. Hey, there's that link again! How may times do I have to link that damn study before people actually start reading it? I linked it in my comment to Scott that he attempts to address on his blog, but he's conveniently ignored it. Scott still hasn't addressed how sexist imagery harms the mental health of women and girls.

And second, in his defense of pornography and erotica, Scott still seems to have missed my point. My post isn't about pornography or erotica. It's about sexist imagery. There is nothing inherent in pornography/erotica that means that it must contain sexist imagery. So a defense of porn does not equal a defense of sexist imagery. Porn is just like any other classification of media: Some of it is sexist and degrading, some of it is not. My post was about sexism, not about porn. I think that sexism is bad. That doesn't mean that I think that porn is bad. And like I said, proving that exposure to pornography does not increase sex crimes (yes, I knew that, duh) does not prove that exposure to objectifying imagery does not warp how women view themselves and how men view women. Because "porn" is NOT synonymous with "objectifying imagery."

Now, as to what I was ACTUALLY arguing my post, if Scott or anybody else would like to respond, here's how to go about it (because apparently, some hand-holding is required):

1. Prove to me that this (NSFW) is an appropriate cover for a book rated for ages nine and up.
2. Prove to me that this (NSFW) would NOT alienate a huge segment of a comic book's potential market, but that this would.
3. Argue that any of the examples that I labeled as "sexist" in my post are not actually sexist. No, seriously, these examples ARE debatable. I think we can all agree that sexism is bad, but of course we should be able to debate about what is sexist or not. But if you want a real challenge, prove to me that this does not reduce an otherwise awesome female character to an anatomically grotesque sex object, and is thus sexist. I'll give you hint: It's NOT because of the giant boobs, I don't have a problem with the giant boobs. And if you can't see that, then I think we really should step back and question which of us is really hung up on the giant boobs here.

But, as a parting shot, let's break this down a bit:
1. I make a post about sexist, objectifying imagery in mainstream superhero comics.
2. Scott responds by writing a lengthy post about how pornography doesn't harm women.

That, alone, speaks volumes about the current state of superhero comics. Because apparently, they're porn.

Oh, and BTW? My online handle "Kotetsu"? That comes from a porno manga. But if you'd like to still compare me to Anita Bryant, then by all means.

Edit June 16th: Fixed the age boundaries because I finally bothered to look at Marvel's rating system. WHOA.

Edit June 20th: Furikku says it better.