Archive for January, 2008

I Killed Journeyman

If Lemont knew the whole story, he’d probably quit the strip. I know he wouldn’t want to work with me ever again.The truth is: I killed Journeyman. I’ve concluded that’s the only logical explanation. Nearly every show I love ends up canceled by the end of its first season. “Space, Above and Beyond,” “Firefly,” “Odyssey 5,” etc. The television landscape is littered with the corpses of Shows Darrin Loved.According to someone close to production who e-mailed me today, “Journeyman” isn’t dead yet. It’s sitting frozen in the driver’s seat of an RV that’s dangling over a cliff, and NBC hasn’t decided whether to save it or let it plunge to an early death. Maybe if I apologize for admiring the show’s sophisticated writing, its surprisingly (for network TV) moving acting, and the sense that it’s all leading to something big — maybe if I promise not to watch it anymore — NBC will save Journeyman. After all, broadcast TV is filled with shows I would never watch, and I’m sure you’d agree that it’s no coincidence those shows are successful.Maybe you never tried Journeyman, or maybe you gave the first couple episodes a try and thought it wasn’t going anywhere. If you thought Journeyman started slowly, or you missed the last couple episodes, watch them right here, right now. And then tell me you wouldn’t like to see where the next few seasons might have taken us.Or better yet, tell NBC.

Minority cartoonists plan February 10 comics page “crossover”

It’s not a crossover in the traditional sense, it’s something that’s never been done before. If you’re a cartoonist of any ethnicity and you want to participate, and you still have time to turn in a new strip for February 10, contact me at “candorville at gmail dot com” and I’ll fill you in on the details.

From Editor & Publisher:

NEW YORK At least eight African-American cartoonists plan to take part in a Feb. 10 comics-page action to draw attention to the way their strips are perceived and purchased.

“Many editors and readers consider different ‘black comics’ to be interchangeable,” said “Candorville” cartoonist Darrin Bell. This, he told E&P today in a phone interview, is among the reasons why many papers run only one or two comics by African-Americans and other creators of color — no matter how many strips and panels are in their comics sections.

But, Bell said, comics by black cartoonists are obviously as different from each other as comics by white cartoonists are different from each other.

“Some are political, some are about friends, and some are about family,” noted Bell, who organized the Feb. 10 action along with “Watch Your Head” cartoonist Cory Thomas. (Both are syndicated by the Washington Post Writers Group.)

For the action, the cartoonists will all do a version of one of Thomas’ comics. The theme and writing in each strip will be similar, though “we’re all plugging in our own characters,” said Bell. The idea is to satirically protest the erroneous notion of many editors and readers that comics by African-American creators are interchangeable.

What might the action accomplish? “I hope editors will start allowing minority cartoonists to compete for all their comics slots, not just one or two slots,” replied Bell, whose 2003-launched “Candorville” strip runs in 60 to 65 papers.

The cartoonist — who also does the “Rudy Park” comic with Theron Heir for United Media — further noted that strips by African-American cartoonists are enjoyed by many white readers as well as black readers.

Bell said he’s not sure the Feb. 10 action should be called a protest, noting that black cartoonists face a problem nowhere near as serious as, say, New Orleans residents still without housing after Hurricane Katrina. But it’s still a problem.

“It’s like a weather forecast of mostly sunny with patches of racism,” Bell said wryly.

“Wryly.” I like that. Read more…

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