Stuff (& Possibly Nonsense) #138

Published On November 17, 2017 | By Richard Bruton | Books, Comics, Film TV & Theatre

Another of Joe and Richard’s Friday round-ups. All the comics news we’ve seen this past week….

Ever since the reveal of Jodi Whittaker’s new Doctor Who outfit, we’ve been seeing a fair number of negative responses. But I think it’s a great look. However, I have no idea about fashion, so what do I know? Luckily, the ever-stylish Sonia Leong has this for us…. the perfect quote and the most wonderful fan art….

“I can’t get over how cute/practical/quirky it is, she’s like a Unicorn Farmer Scientist”

The great Kyle Baker has some perfect advice for you – don’t do it….

Iconic science fiction star Robbie the Robot, from our (still visually ravishing) filmic namesake Forbidden Planet, is going under the hammer at an auction at the famous Bonhams in New York on November 21st. I suspect he will go for rather more than my pocket money can stretch to – beware monsters from the (b)id!!! (sorry)

(Robbie the Robot with Anne Francis in a publicity shot for Forbidden Planet)

Yet more disturbing and upsetting news that has been coming out since the Weinstein allegations (surprise – shine a light in a dark, rotten corner, find not one but a multitude of creepy crawlies lurking there): Buzz Feed ran a long article on veteran DC editor Eddie Berganza. What makes this case (or multiple cases, this went on for years) even creepier is that a huge swathe of people at the publisher and the wider comics industry were well aware of his long-time misbehaviour, including a multi-person complaint to the HR department who, as all these large companies say “take such matters seriously”. So seriously he was later promoted.

Meanwhile many of the women who had to work with him left the company or even the industry as a consequence of the toxic atmosphere of their workplace. Berganza has worked on some of DC’s largest superheroes, but it sounds like he lacks the moral centre of any of those characters. Vile, vile, vile. And again many who were harassed either kept quiet at first for fear of losing a dream job or being blacklisted in the industry if they tried to move elsewhere, so it’s a double hit against them, and another loss for a medium which, especially in the mainstream arena, needs more diversity. As this story continued to rumble on after the weekend it emerged that DC had now terminated Berganza’s employment (via Tripwire).

Tolkien’s beloved Lord of the Rings is returning, this time to the small screen, as Amazon Studios announced plans for a television series, exploring events before those seen in Peter Jackson’s all-conquering film adaptations. It’s too early for details on plots or talent yet, but the reactions of fans online has been mixed, some thinking Tolkien’s world has been well-served already with the LOTR and Hobbit films, others happy at the thought of a return to Middle Earth. And goodness knows there are certainly lots of volumes of material like the History of Middle Earth books that can be drawn on for material. Some fans are happy as a Hobbit in the Prancing Pony, others are grabbing their Precious and going to sit in their cave and ignore it. I’ll reserve judgement until we actually have something to see. (via BBC Newsround)

More adaptation news – seems to be pretty much every other week or so a comic or SF&F novel is being adapted, so different to years back when we got a tiny slice of screen SF&F and that was it – with Netflix announcing the excellent Ellen Page will be in their forthcoming adaptation of Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba’s Umbrella Academy. Initially wary of the “book by famous celeb” thing, we were swiftly overcome when we read Umbrella Academy and loved it – should make for an intriguing TV series, especially with actors like Page involved. Of course Ellen has some familiarity with comics to screen adaptations already, having played Kitty Pryde in the X-Men films.  (via Geek Tyrant)

Here’s a first-look at the poster for Polterheist, an Indy British horror-crime flick starring rising star Pushpinder Chani and shot on location in Yorkshire, around Bradford and Leeds. The film, scripted and directed by Bradford-based writers Paul Renhard and Dave Gilbank expands on their previous well-received short film of the same name – nice to see them getting a chance to develop it into a full-length feature movie. Too early for more details yet, but Poleterheist should be released sometime in 2018, so one to keep an eye out for.

John McCrea posted this lovely pic, by the late and much-missed Steve Dillon, depicting Steve himself and his regular partner in crime Garth Ennis. Steve’s kids found it and sent it to Garth, it was originally drawn for DC Comics Shop Talk edited by Dean Motter. John quotes Garth as commenting “He doesn’t do me any favours, but then he’s not exactly letting himself off the hook either…” Pint in hand is, though, how many of their readers would like to think of both Steve and Garth.

Some very sad news from one of our favourite Canadian creators, the wonderful Kate Beaton: Kate’s sister Becky had to undergo cancer treatment, but after enduring the brutal treatment of chemo and other medical procedures she was declared all-clear. But sadly she was recently diagnosed with cancer again, and the doctors think it is untreatable by the normal methods. Becky and her family are not giving up though and have researched various clinical trials of new procedures and treatments, but most of these take place south of the border in the US, and that means it will cost an awful lot of money, so they have a fundraiser page set up. If you are able, please consider helping, and of course do, please, share the link. Thinking best possibly thoughts to Becky, Kate and their family and friends.

Deadpool 2 gets a new teaser trailer – although this being Deadpool, of course it isn’t a traditional movie trailer…

The Edinburgh International Book Festival’s learning and resource site has posted up some top tips from Barry Hutchison, author of the Beaky Malone series and numerous children’s and YA books, as well as working for the immortal Beano, on creating comic characters, a nice, short, sharp guide for youngsters (or their teachers, librarians or parents) to use. It’s also accompanied by a cracking short interview by cub reporter Angelina:

I spotted this a couple of weeks ago, bookmarked then forgot to post on here, so in a better late than never approach (and assuming some folks may still not have seen the news), fresh from his Thor: Ragnarok success Kiwi director Taika Waititi confirmed he’s working on a sequel to his New Zealand Indy movie cult hit What We Do in the Shadows (which I absolutely love), this time the fictional documentary crew will follow a werewolf pack in a movie, punningly called “We’re Wolves”. (via IndieWire)

The brilliant Tom Gauld for New Scientist: Theoretical particle or Italian dessert?

And on a related note, Tom will be discussing his latest collection, Baking With Kafka, and trends in recent graphic novel publishing, with comics expert Paul Gravett at the British Library on the 28th of November – full details here.

Ruben Bolling’s always interesting Tom the Dancing Bug on BoingBoing looks at 2017 – a year of regression to the “monstrous moralities” of previous eras and wonders how far back we will plunge before the end of the year…

Stephen Collins’ latest in The Guardian. All about those Internet distractions…..

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About The Author

Richard Bruton
- Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he's written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard's day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children's graphic novel library in the country.

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