Comics & Conflicts is a two day event that will explore stories of war in comics, graphic novels and manga.

The conference will explore the ways in which comics around the world represent and articulate the experience and impact of war and conflict. Topics to be covered include the impact of 9/11, the relationship between the image and reality of war. Established and up and coming comics artists are also participating.

Speakers include Pat Mills, legendary creator of Charley’s War; multiple Eisner winner Garth Ennis discussing his Battlefields series; and Martin Barker and Roger Sabin who’ll be talking about the depiction of war in the Guardian’s comic strip Doonesbury.

To read more about the event visit the Comica website

Part 1 here

Back to this, then.

Maybe I was too hard on Geofferson Aerojohns in my first post. Maybe “Bollocks” was an appropriate response to a room covered in blood and the stink of the supernatural. Bollocks might often carry with it a low level sense of levity, but then John Constantine has had to weather some pretty terrible things in his time. Things worse than a few pints of the red stuff and a black magic chaser. Perhaps, for Constantine, a bit of sardonic humour helps him manage his emotions. Perhaps he just doesn’t respond to scenes of hideous violence in the way that you and I would, his emotional responses deadened after one too many trips to Hell.

What is magic, treacle? Find out over the jump

Comics creators, headsup!

For its fifth year, The Observer/Cape/Comica Graphic Short Story Prize has just been announced, inviting UK residents to submit a four-page comic on any theme, with the winner receiving £1,000 (the runner-up £250) and getting their story published in The Observer Review and on the Guardian and Vintage websites. This prize has really galvanised the creative comics scene in this country, stimulating more people to try their hand at sequential art to express themselves. It has also led to several fresh British voices having their debut graphic novels published by Jonathan Cape.

Regular jury members Observer literary critic Rachel Cooke, Random House Creative Director Suzanne Dean, Cape publisher Dan Franklin, and Paul Gravett, Comica Festival director, are joined this year by the pioneer of UK graphic novels Bryan Talbot, of Luther Arkwright, Alice In Sunderland and Grandville fame, and David Nicholls, acclaimed author of One Day and a writer for film, television and theatre.

For more information visit the Comica website

The wonderful chaps over at Orbital Comics, “London’s Finest Comic Book Store”, have given us permission to link directly to their recent interview with Grant Morrison. Designed to compliment our very own sterling work, the Orbital crew chat with Morrison about all the interesting stuff that we didn’t think of and/or get to re Supergods, Batman, Action Comics, Multiversity, Zenith, magic and more.

Go listen, then check out their site. Their wide ranging comic podcasts alone are well worth a few hours of your time.

Boosted for our new readers. Welcome, new readers!

For the audio recording click here

Gary: Hello there this is Gary Lactus and I’m here with Bobsy

Bobsy: Hello

Gary: and we’re just about to phone Grant Morrison to intervew him about his new book supergods. It’s not a comic it’s a book. It’s Part memoir…

Bobsy: …part biography of the superhero in comics and part meditation on what “superhero” means, not just to us geeky chaps, but out there in the wider world

Gary: Right, and Bobsy will be doing much of the interviewing for he has read the book and I have not.

Bobsy: I’ve read a proof which is a bit different to the final copy, which I’ve read most of, so I don’t know how accurate some of what I’m saying is but we’ll go with that.

Our hotline to Grant Morrison!

We chat with the supergods after the jump

Good going New York state

June 25th, 2011

Bullshit ain’t about lying, not according to philosopher Harry Frankfurt from Princeton University. It is, however, still concerned with falsehood.

It is impossible for someone to lie unless he thinks he knows the truth. Producing bullshit requires no such conviction. A person who lies is thereby responding to the truth, and he is to that extent respectful of it. When an honest man speaks, he says only what he believes to be true; and for the liar, it is correspondingly indispensable that he considers his statements to be false. For the bullshitter, however, all these bets are off: he is neither on the side of the true nor on the side of the false. His eye is not on the facts at all, as the eyes of the honest man and of the liar are, except insofar as they may be pertinent to his interest in getting away with what he says. He does not care whether the things he says describe reality correctly. He just picks them out, or makes them up, to suit his purpose.

Great, an’ all, and all very right sounding, but it’s not the definition you’ll likely get from the man on the street. So if we don’t fully grasp bullshit, then God help foreign readers when it comes to its close cousin “bollocks”, that most British of swearwords.

More bollocks over the jump

Over on The Comics Journal website right now.

It’s the best of the bunch. You don’t know The Invisibles unless you know our Poodle.

Art dudes wanted

May 29th, 2011

Art dudes, our pal Ben over at the G-Moz fansite Deep Space Transmissions wants you!

Here’s Ben with the fax:

“You may (or may not) have noticed that I’ve been slowly slogging through Deep Space Transmissions trying to make it look prettier and easier to read. Its pretty slow going but I’m getting there. Now that the Universe B section has embraced readable line-spacing I thought it might be good to get some pictures on there.

Its great to read about all of these comics that only exist in some mixed-up parallel world where Grant Morrison wrote a Fathom movie (?!) but it’d be even better to see them… and that’s where YOU come in.

If any aspiring artists fancy getting their Cosmic Treadmill on and rustling up some Earth-2 covers, pin-ups or character designs for Grant Morrison comics that never were, now’s your chance! Just pick any entry on the Universe B pages and take a stab at drawing something for it. As its all ‘not for profit, just for fun’ there shouldn’t be (God willing) any copyright worries, and all I’m after is a scan of the art, (no originals thanks, unless its awesome) and your consent to host it here on the site. Other than that, no rules, no limits, do whatever you like. This could be your big break into the world of funny books!*

Just attach a scan of whatever you’ve drawn/painted/sculpted/interpretive danced to an email and send it on over to [email protected]

I’m not expecting a huge slew of responses so anything you do send will probably appear on the site. But spread the word around, let’s get a meme going on.. #universeb will do if you’re Twitter-minded. If a lot of stuff starts coming in I might even offer a prize… Something really good…”