It’s all cartoons lately: New Articles — May and June 2008

I have an interview with the artist Michael Paulus on the Gobshite Quarterly website. We talk about cartoon characters and, specfifically, their skeletons.

To see Paulus’ art, he has a gallery on his website.

Meanwhile, over at Mindbuck.com, I have a review essay on Sandman Mystery Theater: Sleep of Reason.

And I have two pieces in the most recent Comics Journal. One, “Low-Calorie Cheescake,” is a review of Last Gasp’s Clean Cartoonists’ Dirty Drawings. The other, “Repeat Offender,” reviews Aaron McGruder’s latest Boondocks collection, All the Rage. (Sorry, these aren’t on the web.)

Interestingly, in our interview Michael Paulus said, “I think if it was Disney, the tendency would have been to do something profane.”

It seems Wally Wood couldn’t resist the temptation. His main contribution to Clean Cartoonists’ Dirty Drawings, “Disneyland Memorial Orgy,” is very profane indeed. As I wrote in The Comics Journal:

“There’s also something weirdly liberating about some of the images. My favorite of the bunch, Wally Wood’s Disneyland Memorial Orgy, shows — among other things — Goofy fucking Minnie as she leans against a cash register, Tinkerbell performing a strip tease, and the seven dwarves assaulting Snow White, all while dollar signs beam sunnily from the magic kingdom’s trademark castle. It’s all done in that characteristic Disney style, so it takes a minute to really understand what you’re seeing. It’s vulgar and it’s hilarious, and it’s also extremely satisfying to see the subversion of the cheap sentimentality and shallow moralism that has made Disney our most beloved commodifier of childhood. Is Wood meanly corrupting these sacred icons? Or is he merely stripping away the hypocrisy and laying bare the repressed subtext of our corporate fairy tales?”

Decide for yourself: You can see the “Memorial Orgy” (and more from the Clean Cartoonists’ Dirty Drawings collection) at The Realist Archive.

April 2008 Speaking Events

April 6 (Sunday), 2pm — Portland, OregonHollywood Library (3930 NE Hancock) — Speaking with Jules Boykoff, author of Beyond Bullets: The Suppression of Dissent in the United States

April 11 (Friday), 8:30am — Portland, Oregon — Panel discussion of Luis A. Fernandez’s book, Policing Dissent: Social Control and the Anti-Globalization MovementPacific Sociological Association Conference

April 23 (Wednesday) — Astoria, Oregon — Cannery Pier Hotel — With other Oregon Book Awards finalists — Sponsored by Literary Arts — http://www.literary-arts.org/

April 24 (Thursday) — Newport, Oregon — Newport Public Library — With other Oregon Book Awards finalists — Sponsored by Literary Arts — http://www.literary-arts.org/

March 2008 Update: Speaking Events and an Article

I have two talks scheduled this month:

March 20 (Thursday), 7pm — Santa Rosa, California — Peace and Justice Center of Sonoma County (467 Sebastopol Ave) — Sponsored by Free Mind Media and Santa Rosa Copwatch — http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2008/02/18/18480039.php

March 23 (Sunday), 2:30pm — San Francisco, California — Anarchist Book Fair (SF County Fair Building, Ninth Avenue and Lincoln Way, Golden Gate Park) — http://sfbookfair.wordpress.com/

Also, I have an article in the current Comics Journal (#288). It’s a review of the last-ever issue of Strangers in Paradise. It’s not online, so if you want to see it you need to find the actual magazine.

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