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Posts Tagged ‘comic

“There is no ‘ordinary person'”*…

 

Tobar Mayo in Abar, the First Black Superman

As Black Panther continues to slay at the box office, a look at one of that blockbuster’s less well-known– indeed, virtually anonymous– antecedents…

Abar, the First Black Superman is truly a cinematic marvel. It has its heart in the right place and fumbles spectacularly in every way possible—the painfully preachy dialogue, the scrappy special effects, the too long running time. But even if it’s not anywhere close to the achievement of Black Panther, it’s a fascinating product of the time and more proof that black superheroes have long existed outside the Marvel universe. And just like Black Panther, their superpowers are almost always political…

An extraordinary story: “One of Cinema’s First Black Superheroes Is Not Who You Think It Is.”

* “The disciplines of physical exercise, meditation and study aren’t terribly esoteric. The means to attain a capability far beyond that of the so-called ordinary person are within the reach of everyone, if their desire and their will are strong enough. I have studied science, art, religion and a hundred different philosophies. Anyone could do as much. By applying what you learn and ordering your thoughts in an intelligent manner it is possible to accomplish almost anything. Possible for an ‘ordinary person.’ There’s a notion I’d like to see buried: the ordinary person. Ridiculous. There is no ‘ordinary person’.”   – that most super of superheroes, Ozymandias, in Alan Moore’s Watchmen

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As we don our capes, we might recall that it was on this date in 1935 that America was introduced to Little Lulu (in the February 23 issue of The Saturday Evening Post), appearing as a flower girl at a wedding and mischievously strewing the aisle with banana peels.   Created by Marjorie Henderson Buell (whose work appeared under the name “Marge”), Little Lulu ran as a regular panel in the Post through 1944; then as a comic book and a comic strip into the 1980s.  She also appeared in a series of animated theatrical cartoons and in a number of TV series and specials.

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Written by LW

February 23, 2018 at 1:01 am

“Nothing could be more misleading than the idea that computer technology introduced the age of information”*…

 

Stuart McMillen‘s glorious illustration of [a] seminal passage from Neil Postman’s glorious Amusing Ourselves to Death

From McMillen’s site, Recombinant Records (via)

* Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business

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As we recommit to being careful what we wish for, we might send prudent birthday greetings to Maria Josepha Amalia of Saxony (Maria Josepha Amalia Beatrix Xaveria Vincentia Aloysia Franziska de Paula Franziska de Chantal Anna Apollonia Johanna Nepomucena Walburga Theresia Ambrosia); she was born on this date in 1803.  The youngest daughterof Prince Maximilian of Saxony and his first wife, Princess Carolina of Parma (daughter of Duke Ferdinand of Parma), she was raised in a German convent to a fervent Catholicism.

Maria Josepha became the Queen of Spain when Ferdinand VII, still childless after the death of his second wife, chose her as his consort.  But feeling the burden of her religious upbringing, Maria Josepha refused to consummate the marriage.  It took a personal letter from Pope Pius VII to convince the queen that sexual relations between spouses were not contrary to the morality of Catholicism; still, she died young (at age 25) and childless. The King’s fourth wife, Maria Christina of the Two Sicilies, eventually gave birth to the future Queen Isabella II of Spain.

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Written by LW

December 6, 2015 at 1:01 am

“Shall I part my hair behind? Do I dare to eat a peach?”*…

 

From Julian Peters, the 24-page comic version of “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” (with larger, zoomable images).

Because.

* T.S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

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As we hear mermaids singing, we might send elegant birthday greetings to Marianne Moore; she was born on this date in 1887.   An American Modernist poet, critic, translator, and editor, she is known for formal innovation, precise diction, irony, and wit in her literary work… and for being probably the only highly-regarded poet ever to to be involved in automotive marketing.

She argues, in her best known poem, “Poetry,” that it is not formal attributes like meter that define poetry, but delight in language and precise, heartfelt expression…

… nor is it valid
to discriminate against ‘business documents and
school-books’; all these phenomena are important. One must
make a distinction
however: when dragged into prominence by half poets, the
result is not poetry,
nor till the poets among us can be
‘literalists of
the imagination’–above
insolence and triviality and can present
for inspection, ‘imaginary gardens with real toads in them’, shall
we have
it. In the meantime, if you demand on the one hand,
the raw material of poetry in
all its rawness and
that which is on the other hand
genuine, you are interested in poetry.

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Patience, rewarded…

 

As (R)D readers know, Randall Munroe’s xkcd webcomic has done some weird and wonderful things before (e.g., here and here), but #1190, ‘Time,” is something special.  A time-lapse movie of two people building a sandcastle, it’s been updating just once an hour (twice an hour in the beginning) for well over a month (since March 25th)– and after over a thousand frames shows no sign of ending.  Any day now, the number of frames will surpass the total number of xkcd comics.  Some of its readers have called it the One True Comic; others, a MMONS (Massively Multiplayer Online Nerd Sniping).  It’s sparked its own wiki, its own jargon (Timewaiters, newpix, Blitzgirling), and a thread on the xkcd user forum that runs to over 20,000 posts from 1100 distinct posters.  So, is ‘Time” a mesmerizing work of art, a penetrating sociological experiment — or the longest-running shaggy-dog joke in history?  Randall Munroe’s not saying.

See it here— and leave it open in your browser… for a long time…

[TotH to Slashdot]

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As we remember that at least some things come to those who wait, we might also recall that it was on this date in 1914 that President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed Mother’s Day– the second Sunday in May– as a day for Americans to show the flag in honor of those mothers whose sons had died in war.

The drive to found the holiday came from Anna Jarvis (in honor of her mother, Ann, who had tried to start a “Mother’s Remembrance Day” in the mid-19th century).  In 1905, Jarvis enlisted the support of merchant extraordinaire John Wanamaker, who knew a merchandising opportunity when he saw one, and who hosted the first Mother’s Day ceremonies in his Philadelphia emporium’s auditorium.  In 1912, Jarvis trademarked the phrases “second Sunday in May” and “Mother’s Day”*, and created the Mother’s Day International Association.  By 1914, Jarvis and Wanamaker had built sufficient support in Congress to a get Congressional Resolution requesting the President’s action.  Wilson, who was by current accounts uninterested in the move (distracted as he was by the beginnings of his ultimately unsuccessful effort to keep the U.S. out of the troubles in Europe that became World War I), nonetheless knew better than to take a stand against moms.

So readers should remember that there are only three shopping days (counting today) before this year’s Mother’s Day.

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* Though the ad above handles it differently, Jarvis specified that that “Mother’s” should “be a singular possessive, for each family to honor their mother, not a plural possessive commemorating all mothers in the world.”

Written by LW

May 9, 2013 at 1:01 am

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