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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Book of Esther comic art exhibit & Waldman appearance at Limmud Philadelphia

According to the ComicsDC blog, the Jewish Museum of Maryland (Herbert Bearman Campus, 15 Lloyd St., Baltimore) will be hosting an exhibition of pages from JT Waldman's graphic novel adaptation Megillat Esther. There will be a preview on March 5th, from 8-11 PM and the exhibition will run from March 8th to July 26th.

This Sunday, JT will be one of the guest speakers at LimmudPhilly, taking place in Classroom 404 at the Gershman Y in Philadelphia, PA, 4:30 PM - 5:45 PM. His session, entitled "Make Your Own Comix Midrash" is described below.

Explore the topic of Midrash. How does this ancient process and body of work relate to us today? How does the show and tell quality of comics make it an ideal medium to discover personal connections to Jewish text, folklore and holidays? Following a lively presentation of the topic of Midrash and the Jewish connections within the comic book industry, participants will create their own mini-Midrash comics about familiar biblical or historical characters. No artistic experience required. All levels welcome!

Friday, February 06, 2009

Neil Kleid at NYCC

Here's one more "Jewish" reason to attend this year's New York Comic Con - Neil Kleid (Xeric award-winning author / illustrator of Stable Rods, "Shomer Negiah", Pilgrimage : Two Weeks in G-d's Country, the graphic novel Brownsville, as well as the forthcoming Migdal David and The Big Khan) will be in attendance. Details below.

He's written that he has one or two things to announce. If you have a chance during the convention, please swing by to say hello.

Here’s where you’ll find him:


11AM-1PM: NBM Publishing (Booth 1713)
2-3PM: Image Comics (Booth 1403)
3-5PM: NBM Publishing (Booth 1713)


Meetings and general walking around, saying hello to pals.


10-11AM: NBM Publishing (Booth 1713)
11AM-12PM: Image Comics (Booth 1403)
3-5PM: NBM Publishing (Booth 1713)

Sunday, February 01, 2009

42 Jewish Reasons to Attend NYCC 2009

Next weekend, the New York Comic Con will take place in Manhattan. You may go to the official website using the link in the last sentence to get all the details about guests and programming.

Below, I am highlighting "Jewish" sessions and guests who are Jewish &/or who have helped create "Jewish" comics.

(1) Sunday 12:15 PM - 1:15 PM, Rm. 1A18
Jews and Comics: A Cottage Industry
In the past few years, there have been multiple books dealing with Jews and their role in the creation of the comics industry. Could this be because, as we lose more and more of the Greatest (Comics) Generation, there is a collective need to understand the roots, ethnic and otherwise, of the medium? Authors

(2) Arie Kaplan (From Krakow to Krypton: Jews and Comics),

(3) Danny Fingeroth (Disguised as Clark Kent: Jews, Comics, and the Creation of the Superhero), and

(4) Simcha Weinstein (Up, Up, and Oy Vey!: How Jewish History, Culture, and Values Shaped The Comicbook Superhero) and comics creators

(5) Al Jaffee (Mad magazine) and

(6) Jerry Robinson (Batman) discuss the rise of interest in the Jewish side of comics. Moderated by David Hajdu (The Ten-Cent Plague: The Great Comic-Book Scare and How it Changed America).

(7) Saturday 2:45 PM - 3:45 PM Rm. 1A23
Jerry Robinson Spotlight
Jerry Robinson created the infamous Joker and played a vital role in the development of legendary Batman characters Robin, Alfred, and Penguin. His vast body of work spans 30 years as an internationally-syndicated political cartoonist, 30 books, and numerous exhibitions (including The Superhero, now on world tour, and Human Rights for the United Nations). Robinson’s honors include the Milton Caniff Lifetime Achievement and the Eisner Hall of Fame.

(8) Saturday 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM Rm. 1A14
Joe Simon Spotlight: The Secret Origins of the Comic Book World
Joe Simon worked alongside the titans — Jack Kirby, Will Eisner, C.C. Beck, Jack Schiff, and Martin Goodman to name but a few. He was Marvel’s very first editor and hired youngsters like Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. His credits include million-sellers such as Captain America, Boy Commandos, Sandman, Young Romance, Black Magic, Police Trap, Fighting American, Boy’s Ranch, and SICK! Joe produced comics for the US military, was singled out for investigation by the Kefauver Committee, and was picketed by the Nazis. Stan Lee said, “Lucky for me, when I entered comics, Joe Simon was my mentor. In script, art, and editing, he was the master.” Come learn the details of the exciting new Simon and Kirby Library, coming from Titan Books later this year, and ask Joe yourself what it was like being there at the origin of the comic book world.

(9) Saturday 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM Rm. 1A17
Twisted Toyfare Theatre: Behind the Stupidity
Join the writers of ToyFare Magazine’s satirical comic strip Twisted ToyFare Theatre for an inside look at how they get toys into all those compromising positions. Ask questions, watch TTT animations, and answer TTT trivia for a chance to win prizes! Brought to you by the editorial staff at ToyFare Magazine and Wizard Entertainment!
[Blogmaster's note : Among the TTT stories is "Seder-Masochism" showing a Passover seder attended by superheroes and other action figures.]

(10) Sunday 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Rm. 1A21
Who Owns Comics? Superman on Trial
A judge has awarded the family of Superman's co-creator Jerry Siegel co-ownership of Action #1. This panel will examine the behind-the-scenes history of this landmark case and discuss means for the future of Superman, comics and creators' rights and discuss its relation to other comics-related intellectual property issues, such as the creators' rights movement, the Watchmen case and the Holocaust art of Dina Babbitt.

(11) Sunday 1:45 PM - 2:45 PM Rm. 1A17
Lilly Renee Phillips Spotlight
Lily Renee Phillips was one of the pioneer women cartoonists in the Golden Age of Comics, working primarily for Fiction House publishers. Fleeing Nazi Germany to America as a child, she went on to draw covers and such features as The Lost World, Senorita Rio, and Werewolf Hunters for Planet Comics, Rangers Comics, and Fight Comics. With her then-husband Eric Peters, she also drew covers and interior stories for a number of Abbott & Costello Comics. Phillips talks about her amazing life and career with Heidi MacDonald (The Beat).

(12) Neal Adams (illustrator of "The Ventures of Zimmerman" [parody of Bob Dylan] and "Son O' God", which both appeared in the pages of National Lampoon)

(13) Dick Ayers (illustrator of "Lonely Are the Brave" in Combat Kelly and the Deadly Dozen #2, in which the titular heroes liberate a concentration camp)

(14) Kyle Baker (author-illustrator of the King David graphic novel from Vertigo, as well as a funny 1-page cartoon in his Kyle Baker : Cartoonist TPB in which a Jewish Cinderella has a mishap under the chuppah)

(15) Chris Claremont (who introduced the Jewish character Kitty Pryde [aka Shadowcat]& who wrote stories which implied that Magneto was Jewish, both in the pages of The Uncanny X-Men)

(16) Peter David (who infamously used the names of seder plate items for aliens in a Star Trek novel and who wrote the stories for The Incredible Hulk #386-387 ; see and

(17) J.M. DeMatteis (author of The Compleat Moonshadow, the "Greenberg the Vampire" story in Bizarre Adventures #29 and the Greenberg the Vampire graphic novel, as well as a bunch of other Jewish-content stories, e.g. "Bernie America, Sentinel of Liberty", "Death Camp", and "Yesterday's Shadows")

(18) Colleen Doran (illustrator of a one-page illustration in The Death Gallery, in which Death is at a concentration camp)

(19) Keith Giffen (author of the Ragman miniseries that reintroduced the title character as a Jewish superhero and also creator of the characters Dreidel and Rabbi Zone, who both appeared in the pages of the last issue of the series The Heckler)

(20) Dan Goldman (author-illustrator of a short piece titled "Schmear", which he describes as "Jewish porn", since it takes place in the backroom of a Brooklyn bagel shop. The story appeared in Smut Peddler #2). In all fairness, Dan's done other - & better-known - stories (e.g. Shooting War) but "Schmear" is the only "Jewish" work of his that I've seen.

(21) Peter Gross (arist for issues of the series Hellstorm: Prince of Lies which had the character Rabbi Avram Siegel)

(22) Dean Haspiel (illustrator of the Harvey Pekar graphic autobiography The Quitter, as well as several shorter Pekar stories)

(23) Phil Jimenez (illustrator of a Heroes online comic featuring an Israeli Mossad agent named Hana Gitelman)

(24) Joe Kubert (author-illustrator of the graphic novels Jew Gangster and Yossel : April 19, 1943, as well as the Sgt. Rock : The Prophecy miniseries)

(25) Peter Kuper (author-illustrator of the short biographical story "Promised Land" in Bleeding Heart #2, as well as the book-length autobiographical Stop Forgetting to Remember : The Autobiography of Walter Kurtz)

(26) Scott Kurtz (author-illustrator of PVP, the Eisner-award-winning online comic strip which in 2006 made a joke about the Superman Returns movie being "a Jewish conspiracy to convince Christians that Jesus was gay")

(27) Ted McKeever (illustrator of the 4-issue Doom Patrol story "Imagine Ari's Friend", which featured the characters Reb Chaim, Joseph Della Reina and Isaac Luria)

(28) Peter Milligan (author of the Vertigo series The Minx which featured Jewish youth Anna Schwarz)

(29) Steve Murphy (author of the story "Kaddish" in Tales of the TMNT #10)

(30) Josh Neufeld (author of the graphic memoir A Few Perfect Hours, in which he compares a Balinese cremation ceremony with his [Jewish] grandmother's funeral)

(31) Steve Niles (author of Criminal Macabre: Feat of Clay)

(32) Jerry Ordway (illustrator of an issue of Superman in which he went to the Warsaw Ghetto, as well as an All-Star Squadron story in which Steel ended up in a Nazi death camp)

(33) Greg Pak (illustrator of the X-Men : Magneto : Testament miniseries)

(34) Jimmy Palmiotti (co-creator of the short-lived golem series The Monolith from DC Comics)

(35) George Perez (illustrator of Wonder Woman #37 and #38 which had the character Rabbi Benjamin Hecht.

(36) Josef Rubinstein (an illustrator of the 2nd Mendy & the Golem series and contributor to both Journeys : The Collected Edition and Balm in Gilead)

(37) Louise Simonson (co-author of issues of a Superman storyline in which Superman went to the Warsaw Ghetto)

(38) Art Spiegelman (author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning memoir Maus and one of the main characters in the online story "The Night I Met Art Spiegelman")

(39) J. Michael Straczynski (author of the Amazing Spider-Man story "You Want Pants with That?" and the Rising Stars story "Selah")

(40) Len Wein (writer of the golem story in Strange
Tales #174 - see

(41) G. Willow Wilson (author of the graphic novel Cairo)

(42) Marv Wolfman (author of the stories in The Tomb of Dracula #27, The New Teen Titans #24 and the graphic history Homeland : The Illustrated History of the State of Israel)