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Thursday, November 03, 2011

Lily Renee & Trina Robbins at MOCCA in NY - tonight (now)

Apologies for this late listing, but I have a double excuse.

(1) I didn't realize the event was happening until Tuesday.

(2) I have a bit of a virus, so I haven't been able to spend much time blogging lately.

Meet comic book pioneers Lily Renée Wilheim and Trina Robbins as they discuss and sign an extraordinary new book.

Lily Renée, Escape Artist is the inspirational story about the remarkable life of Lily Renée Wilheim and her tenacious escape from Nazi occupation to become one of the leading female comic books artists of the post-war era.

The two remarkable guests, Lily Renée, a sprightly and fascinating octogenarian, and Trina Robbins, a comic book historian and pioneer in her own right (Wonder Woman writer, 60s underground comix groundbreaker, etc.) provide an insightful and entertaining look at the contribution of women in the comic book industry of the last 70 years--a quintessential American story.

Time : Thursday, November 3, 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Location : Museum of Comic & Cartoon Art - MoCCA
594 Broadway - Suite 401 (between Houston and Prince)
New York, New York

Admission : FREE

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Jewish Side of NYCC on Sukkot

Today is the first day of the annual New York Comic Convention (aka New York Comicon aka NYCC). It is also the first day of the Jewish holiday Sukkos (aka the Festival of Booths). This is not the first time that NYCC has coincided with a Jewish holiday. In 2008, NYCC coincided with Passover.

Sukkot is one of the Jewish holidays which is divided into "yom tov" and "chol ha-moed" days. The yom tovim are days during which one may not do certain prohibited activities (e.g. use electricity, handle money), but one may do such activities during the "chol ha-moed" period.

The first 2 days of NYCC this year coincide with the "yomim tovim", while the third day is on the Jewish Sabbath (which has prohibitions, just like yomim tovim). However, day 4 (arguably the most fun day because it's also "kids day") is a chol ha-moed day, so Orthodox and observant Jews need not feel excluded this year.

Those who feel bad about missing out on Comicon while they're observing the holiday traditions may thematically combine their "Jewish self" with their "inner geek" by reading one (or both) of the recommended comics (which I'll plug at the end of this post) inside their sukkahs.

For those who will be attending NYCC, I'd like to point out the creators and publishers of Jewish-content comics who will be in attendance as well as recommended Jewishy panels.

The Panels

Fri. Oct. 14
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Location: 1B01
Will Eisner's The Spirit and Bob Kane's The Batman
Like their creators Will Eisner and Bob Kane, The Spirit and The Batman had an intertwined and complex relationship. DeWitt Clinton High School classmates, Will and Bob helped each other in their early comics careers. As fate would have it, each came up with an iconic non-superpowered costumed adventurer who owed a lot to the films noir of Orson Welles and other cinema pioneers. Investigating how these two masters interacted, interrelated, and worked is sure to be fascinating. Join Michael Uslan (producer of the Batman films), Paul Levitz (Legion of Super-Heroes), Dennis O'Neil (Batman writer and editor), Chris Couch (The Will Eisner Companion), and moderator Danny Fingeroth (The Stan Lee Universe and Disguised as Clark Kent: Jews, Comics, and the Creation of the Superhero) as they explore the similarities and differences between the characters and their creators.

3:45 pm - 4:45 pm
Location: 1A23
Joe Simon: My Life in Comics
What was it like to be targeted by the Nazi party? What was Stan Lee like as a teenage kid? How did it feel to have your comics torn apart by a Congressional committee--on live television!? And what was the real origin of the Red Skull? These secrets and more, revealed by the man who lived them--Joe Simon, co-creator of Captain America, first editor at Marvel Comics, creator of Sick magazine, and a genuine living legend. Joe turned 98 years old on October 11, and this is his only appearance at a comic book convention. So come out and wish him a happy birthday!

Sat. Oct. 15
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Location: 1B03
Comics Studies Conference 3: Requiem for Weisinger: The Life and Work of Superman Editor Mort Weisinger
Comic book historian and illustrator Arlen Schumer (The Silver Age of Comic Book Art) presents the work of Mort Weisinger, editor of the Superman line for 30 years (1940-70), through Weisinger's own words and artist Curt Swan’s images, with the participation of Mort’s son, Dr. Hank Weisinger.

Sunday, October 16
10:45 am - 11:45 am
Location: 1A15
MoCCA Presents: Michael Uslan, The Boy Who Loved Batman
Presenting the true story of Michael Uslan, and how a middle class boy from New Jersey grew up to be an executive producer of one of the most successful film franchises of all time. Uslan has been the executive producer, along with his partner Benjamin Melnicker, of the Batman series of films, starting with 1989’s landmark Batman to the most recent installment, the second highest grossing film of all time, The Dark Knight. He has written comic books, comic strips, a children’s book, a book on Rock and Roll with Dick Clark, graphic novels and most recently, his critically-acclaimed autobiography, The Boy Who Loved Batman. Signing to immediately follow at MoCCA Booth #2631

Note: Michael Uslan is also known for his lecture "Pow! Zap! Oy! How Jewish Immigrants Created Super Heroes".

1:15 pm - 2:15 pm
Location: 1A15
Spotlight on Chris Claremont and Paul Levitz: Superheroes: Fact and Fiction
Join the award-winning writers of The Uncanny X-Men and The Legion of Superheroes. Have your questions answered and learn the inside scoop on these two fabulous teams, how they came into their own in their 70’s, influencing comics, movies, videos, television. Chris Claremont is best known for his time on Marvel Comic’s X-Men, were he created such characters as Rogue, Gambit, Mystique, and Kitty Pryde. Paul Levitz is the long-time writer of The Legion of Superheroes for DC Comics.

Note : Paul Levitz gave Colossal Boy (Gim Allon) his Jewish background and scripted the 1-page story Tradition for DC's 9-11 book.


Abrams Comicarts - booth 1144
Published titles include Auschwitz, Hereville : How Mirka Got Her Sword and Yiddishkeit.

First Second Books - booth 1730
Published works include Klezmer : Tales of the Wild East, Resistance, Vampire Loves and Little Vampire.

NBM (Nantier Beall Minoustchine Publishing Inc.) - booth 1831
Published works include A Jew in Communist Prague, Brownsville and The Big Khan.


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

Ernie Colon (illustrator of Anne Frank: The Anne Frank House Authorized Graphic Biography, as well as the second series of Mendy and the Golem comics)

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

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

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)

Rebekah Isaacs (illustrator of the series Drafted)

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

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

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)

Stan Lee (Jewish comics legend who co-created the Fantastic Four, which has a Jewish character called The Thing and who appeared in the story "What if the Original Marvel Bullpen was the Fantastic Four?" in What If? #11)

Paul Levitz (author of "Tradition" in DC Comics' 9-11 September 11th 2001)

A. David Lewis (author of The Lone and Level Sands, a graphic novel adaptation of the story of Exodus) will be at booth #1546

Miriam Libicki (author-illustrator of jobnik!) will be at booth S9

Rob Liefeld (illustrator of stories in the Youngblood series, which included the Israeli superheroine Masada)

Todd McFarlane (co-plotter of the story "Remains" in Spawn #103)

Clifford Meth (author of the illustrated story "I, Gezheh" in Aardwolf #1).

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

Arlen Schumer (author-illustrator of Captain Israel)

Bill Sienkiewicz (illustrator of the story "Night Screams" in X-Men #159, in which Kitty is saved from Dracula by her Star of David necklace)

The 2 Sukkot-related comics which I made reference to at the beginning of this post are :

Jewish Hero Corps #2 (written by Alan Oirich ; illustrated by Ron Randall)
"The Secret of the Solar Succah"


The Escapists #2 (written by Brian K. Vaughan ; illustrated by Jason S. Alexander and Steve Rolston)

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Yiddishkeit panel in New York City on Wednesday

Having just recovered from eating too much apples and honey during Rosh HaShanah (the Jewish New Year, which was celebrated 2 days ago), Jews around the world will be preparing to ask G-d's forgiveness this coming Friday night (i.e. during Yom Kippur).

2 days before that, though, certain Jews (and interested non-Jews) will be gathering at The Graduate Center to listen to a panel of (mostly) Jewish people discuss Yiddish history and culture. Specifically, they will be discussing a new graphic anthology recently published by Abrams titled Yiddishkeit : Jewish Vernacular and the New Land. Yiddishkeit, edited by Paul Buhle and the late Harvey Pekar z"l is descibed as :

the last fully realized work by the late Pekar [which] unveils the lasting influence of Yiddish on American culture.

On the panel will be :

playwright and author Allen Lewis Rickman, National Yiddish Book Center founder Aaron Lansky (whose quest to save Yiddish is featured in one of the anthology's stories), cartoonist Ben Katchor, anthology contributor Danny Fingeroth (who authored the book Disguised as Clark Kent : Jews, Comics, and the Creation of the Superhero), Sabrina Jones, Jewish Currents editor Larry Bush, and anthology co-editor Paul Buhle.

Date : Wed., Oct. 5, 2011
Venue : The Graduate Center
365 Fifth Avenue (at 34th Street)
New York, NY 10016
Cost : $10.00
Tickets may be purchased online at

Yiddishkeit made Quimby's Top 10 Weekly list (at #6) for the week of Aug. 31st and its cover was chosen as the Book Cover of the Week by Jewish Book World's Naomi Firestone-Teeter on August 10th.

An excerpt by Neal Gabler may be found at

Original artwork (which is for sale) by Dan Archer may be viewed a

What have people been saying about Yiddishkeit thus far?

Choice review excerpts below (with links to the full commentary).

Gilles d'Aymery, Swans Commentary
"Neither pedagogic nor didactic, the scripts are superb, the drawings splendid, and as Paul Buhle wrote in his Editor's Note, 'the culture of Yiddish is so inherently vernacular that comics art provides a perfect venue for an exploration of issues and personalities.' A significant historical and cultural book not to be missed."

David from New York,
"a scholarly book, this isn't; a thorough and enjoyable book this is. Don't think Talmud; think The Wise Men of Chelm as if Chelm were the USA. I can't think of a better introduction to Yiddishkeit."

Sephora Markson Hartz, Secular culture and ideas, rethinking Jewish
"In the end, Yiddishkeit is worth reading not because Pekar is a dazzling storyteller, but because he is,as Buhle notes, an 'idiosyncratic' one. The force of Harvey Pekar’s personality has always been his greatest asset, as is his life-long interest in giving new life—and pressing new relevance—to seemingly marginal subjects. True, you may dispute some of Pekar’s assessments of Yiddish culture, but nevermind. You’ll find yourself blissfully enchanted by his eccentricities."

Steven Heller, Imprint
"Rich in lore and folkways, the book trace the influence of Yiddish from medieval Europe to New York's Lower East Side. Yiddishkeit means 'Jewishness,' as in a 'Jewish way of life.' "

Rick Klaw, Nexus Graphica
"Perhaps the most unusual and unexpected graphic work of the year, the impressive Yiddishkeit successfully peels back centuries of scholarship and dogma while revealing the nuances of the colorful language and its impact on contemporary society."

Paul Kupperberg,
"Yiddishkeit is an introduction to dozens of lost or forgotten Yiddish authors, and a compelling overview of just how influential the Jews and their particular way of seeing life were in shaping American pop culture (from MAD Magazine to Woody Allen)."

Josh Lambert, Forward
"Like the collection of kitschy coffee mugs and refrigerator magnets that Shandler analyzes as epitomizing that phenomenon, 'Yiddishkeit' aims to interact with and influence the relationship between Yiddish culture and people who don’t read or speak the language. Specifically, the book promulgates a familiar set of ideas about Yiddish: that it was 'focused on the here and now rather than on airy philosophical discourse,' as pop historian Neal Gabler says in his introduction; that it was an incubator for communists, socialists, anarchists and other leftists, which is what Buhle tends to emphasize, and that it was the medium for a rich and neglected modern literary and performance tradition and has indelibly marked American popular culture forever after."

David Luhrssen, Express Milwaukee
"Yiddishkeit is by no means a comprehensive study of Yiddish film, Jews in Hollywood or the leavening effect of the Jewish sensibility on the dour culture of WASP America. But it's a fun and informed read—one that will make many of us search for more material on the various subjects it touches."

Mae "mes2000",
"The visual treatment of literary and biographical topics in 'Yiddishkeit' is fun, but very truncated: for example, it offers a 3-page summary of Aaron Lansky's memoir 'Outwitting History,' (which I think is actually a better treatment of Yiddish in America) and a 12-page 'retelling' in graphic form of the 1937 Yiddish movie 'Greenfields.' "

Laura Miller
"this fabulous rich volume has much to tell everyone about the roots of our national humor, drama and vernacular language."

Noel Murray, The A.V. Club
"There’s a lot of quality material here, though, including a series of concise, anecdotal one-pagers written by Joel Schechter and drawn by Spain Rodriguez. And Pekar fans will appreciate getting one more chance to read his impassioned, sometimes cranky opinions about the artists America embraces and the ones they unjustly ignore."

Allan Nadler, Jewish Ideas Daily
" The result is a stunningly colorful but dizzyingly messy comic bouquet to secular Yiddish culture."

Publishers Weekly
"The art is provided by a number of notables, including Spain Rodriguez, Peter Kuper, and Sharon Rudahl, every bit of it brimming with the charm and flavor of its subject and seamlessly meshing with the text to create a genuinely compelling, scholarly comics experience."

Tom Spurgeon, the Comics Reporter
"Its existence in comic shops is as wonderfully odd and potentially jarring in its own way as some of the weirder and more depressing stuff that shops offer up."

Happy (Jewish) New Year from Edge City

Terry Laban (and co-writer spouse Patty) once again wish their loyal readers a "Shanah Tovah"(good year) via a week-long themed storyline in their syndicated comic strip Edge City.

This year, the Ardin family considers attending a different synagogue for the high holy days (since Abby's parents will be in Florida).

To view the strips, go to the following links (each of which will be valid until 30 days after its publication).

Or read the compilation below (until / unless I get a "please remove" e-mail from the copyright holder).

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

pre-order a digital copy of "The 36" - only 5 days left

The 36 is one of the latest Jewish graphic novel projects which is being helped out by Kickstarter. However, the deadline for raising the funds (goal total : $10,000 USD) is less than a week away (Aug. 8th). That means that if the $10,000 is not raised in time to meet the deadline, the project may be delayed or could remain unfinished.

What's The 36 about?

Below is the description from the entry at Kickstarter :

The 36 is a graphic novel based on the Kabbalistic belief that there are 36 people in the world upon whom it is saved by their simple existence. In times of need, these people emerge from anonymity and save us, then fade back into their lives.

Noam, our hero, is one of those people. Armed with the fabled staff of Moses (used to split the Red Sea), Noam would love nothing more than to fade into anonymity; he just doesn't know what he has to do to finish his duty as one of the 36.
The first 5 pages of the book may be viewed at

You may also watch the colorful promotional Vimeo video at or by clicking on the inline image below.

The 3 "low reward" options seem quite reasonable to me.

For just $10, you will receive a digitally-delivered PDF copy of the Trade Paperback for "The 36" (Chapters #1-5).

For only $6, you will receive a digitally-delivered PDF copy of "The 36" Chapters #1-3.

A mere $1 will allow you to receive a digitally-delivered PDF copy of "The 36" Chapter #1.

There are other reward levels, as well. However, I wanted to point out that you may read the whole story (5 chapters), just by paying $10 (if the fundraising goal is met by the deadline).

Remember : the deadline for this Kickstarter project is just 5 days away.

To go to the pledge page for the 36 (pledges do not become payments unless the project is fully funded ; payment is via, please visit

Friday, July 22, 2011

Jewish Side of SDCCI 2011

Today (Saturday) is day 3 of the annual San Diego Comic Convention International.

As usual, there are plenty of Jewish cartoonists and creators of Jewish-content stories in attendance.

There are also panels which might be of interest to those interested in Jewish cartoonists &/or Jewish comic stories.

The most relevant panel at this year's convention is obviously the following Sunday noon-time session :

12:00-1:00 Jews 'n' Comics: A Past and Present History
From Ben Grimm to The Golem and more, comic book historian and illustrator Arlen Schumer (The Silver Age of Comic Book Art) surveys the specifically Jewish creation of the American superhero and its antecedents in older, ancient myths, as well as the significant contributions Jews have made to the evolution of comic book art in the 20th and 21st centuries -- including his own superhero creation, Captain Israel!
Room 24ABC

Other panles at the convention included / will include :


10:30-11:30 Spotlight on Joyce Brabner
Is she the glacial, humorless activist as portrayed in the film American Splendor or just the person who published the first comic on the Internet? Come hear Comic-Con special guest Joyce Brabner talk about her latest projects, including finishing the work of her late husband Harvey Pekar and dealing with his legacy.

1:00-2:00 Abrams ComicArts
For over 60 years Abrams has been the premiere art book publisher. With the launch of Abrams ComicArts in 2009, the tradition of excellence continues with award-winning original graphic novels by Brian Fies,
Jason Shiga, and Barry Deutsch, as well as monographs on such seminal creators as Jack Kirby, Harvey Kurtzman, and Jaime Hernandez. Charles Kochman (editorial director), Sheila Keenan (senior editor), and Neil Egan (designer) talk with celebrated graphic designer Chip Kidd (Shazam! The Golden Age of the
World's Mightiest Mortal) about their current titles and reveal details and images from their upcoming collaborations with Dan Clowes, Derf Backderf, Kazu Kibuishi, and Dave McKean, as well as other projects and surprises.


3:30-4:30 Spotlight on Eric Drooker
Visual artist and Comic-Con special guest Eric Drooker will project hundreds of his magical images and explore how his early years as a street artist in New York City inspired his award-winning graphic novels Flood! and Blood Song. He'll discuss the process of designing the animation for the recent hit film Howl, starring James Franco, and how he adapted it for the new book, Howl: A Graphic Novel. Best known for his numerous cover paintings for The New Yorker, Drooker will tell hilarious-but-true stories of how he wound up getting published.


11:00-12:00 Will Eisner: Visionary
Will Eisner -- artist, storyteller, entrepreneur -- played a central role in comics from the Golden Age to the Computer Age. During his career, Eisner reinvented sequential art and himself to overcome obstacles and create new media. A combination of idealist and realist, he led the way and helped create the comics and graphic novels that we know today. Learn about Will Eisner from those who personally knew and worked with him. Join moderator Charles Brownstein (executive director of the CBLDF, author of Eisner/Miller), Denis Kitchen (artist, author, publisher, Eisner's agent and longtime friend), Paul Levitz (writer, former president/publisher of DC Comics), Scott McCloud (artist, author, theoretician about comics and sequential art), Diana Schutz (executive editor, Dark Horse Comics), and Jeff Smith (writer/cartoonist, Bone, Rasl) to learn more about the "Father of the Graphic Novel." Room 9

12:00-1:00 Comics Arts Conference Session #10: The Wit, Whimsy, and Wisdom of Weisinger
Comic book historian and illustrator Arlen Schumer (The Silver Age of Comic Book Art) presents the work of Mort Weisinger, editor of the Superman line for 30 years (1940-1970), told in Weisinger's own words and artist Curt Swan's images. Room 26AB

1:00-2:00 Remembering Harvey Pekar
The legendary Harvey Pekar died in July 2010, leaving behind a huge legacy of work with a veritable who's who list of comics collaborators on his American Splendor and graphic novels. Joyce Brabner and Danielle Batone join editor Charles Kochman, artist Joseph Remnant (Harvey Pekar's Cleveland), and moderator Jeff Newelt to talk about Harvey's life and comics career. This is an open invitation to anyone whoever worked with Harvey or cared about him to come and share their memories.

1:30-2:30 Spotlight on Peter Kuper
From MAD to World War 3 Illustrated, Comic-Con special guest Peter Kuper (Spy vs. Spy) has for three decades been blowing up spies and politicians and creating graphic novels ranging from Franz Kafka adaptations to autobiographies that would scare Kafka. Get an inside look at how he comes up with Spy vs. Spy ideas and his other idiotic projects! Room 8

2:00-3:00 Spotlight on J. Michael Straczynski
Comic-Con special guest J. Michael Straczynski (Thor movie and comic, Superman Earth One, World War Z movie, Babylon 5) talks about...well, we're never quite sure. He's fairly incomprehensible. Have you heard him? Stunning, really. Can't make out a word. We imagine he'll be talking about writing for movies, TV, comics and so on, but honestly, he could be talking about hydroponics for all we can tell. Translators may be provided if we can ever figure out what language he's speaking. Room 7AB

6:00-7:00 Spirituality in Comics: Is Mass Media Our New Church?
In comics, movies, and even Broadway musicals like The Book of Mormon, spiritual themed work seems to be unexpectedly coming from the least religious of sources. Panelists Sergio Cariello (The Action Bible), Buzz Dixon (Hits and Misses), Mike Shields (Blue Blazes), and Russell Dalton (Marvelous Myths: Marvel Superheroes and Everyday Faith) discuss how a new media world of comics and pop culture is exploring timeless truths. Special giveaways for those in attendance. Brought to you by the Christian Comic Arts Society. Room 4


10:00-11:15 The Annual Jack Kirby Tribute Panel
As always, we gather to remember the man some still hail as The King of the Comics, Jack Kirby. If you don't know who that is, you have no business being at this convention. Moderator Mark Evanier discusses the life and times of Kirby with Walt Simonson (Thor), Erik Larsen (Savage Dragon), Richard Kyle (Graphic Story World), and Mike Royer (inker of lots of Kirby comics). Room 5AB

10:00-11:00 Diversity and Fandom 102: How You Can Make a Difference
In the wake of campaigns like's protests and the rise of safe spaces like, fans, consumers and creators from underrepresented groups have more outlets for speaking up. This panel explores how those voices can be added to conversations with geeky business interests and fan communities. Actor Dante Basco (Avatar: The Last Airbender, Hook), showrunner/writer Javier Grillo-Marxuach (The Middleman), author Malinda Lo (Huntress), Arturo Garcia (, Phil Yu ( and USC Professor Henry Jenkins (CivicPaths Project) promise a lively discussion, moderated by Room 24ABC

3:45-4:45 The Holocaust Through the Eyes of a Child, Animated by a Child
Bill Plympton (two-time Oscar-nominated animator, Idiots and Angels), 11-year-old prodigy animator and child film critic Perry Chen, his mother Dr. Zhu Shen (producer), Karina Bessoudo (Toon Boom Animation, vice president of marketing and communications), and Kevin Sean Michaels (director) share insight and a sneak preview of the film Ingrid Pitt: Beyond The Forest and the cross-generational collaboration that was formed to create it. The short animated film illustrates the miraculous true story of the late actress Ingrid Pitt (Where Eagles Dare) who, in 1945, escaped at age 8 from a Nazi concentration camp in Poland to later become one of the UK's biggest movie stars. Also screening will be a trailer for the new documentary on animator Bill Plympton, Adventures in Plymptoons! Moderated by Pat Swinney Kaufman (executive director for the New York State Governor's Office for Motion Picture and Television Development) and Lloyd Kaufman (president/co-founder of Troma Entertainment, author of Sell Your Own Damn Movie). Room 5AB


Creators who will be present at the convention (most of them exhibiting &/or on panels) include :

Sergio Aragones (who illustrated the "Fanny Hillman : Jewish Madam" books and adapted the Jonah story for Testament)

Ernie Chan (illustrator of the 1-page "Lilith The First Vampire"story in Vampire Tales #4)

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

Alan Davis (author of the "Nazi Excalibur"storyline in Excalibur #9-11)

Barry Deutsch (author of the Eisner-nominated Hereville which won the 2011 Sydney Taylor Award {Older Readers category})

Tony Dezuniga (illustrator of the stories "Black Crossing" and "There Comes Now Raging Fire" in Strange Tales #176 & #177)

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

Eric Drooker (author-illustrator of the comic story "Casting Stones" in World War 3 Illustrated, reprinted in The Mammoth Book of Best War Comics, Carroll & Graf, 2007, p. 511-512)

Garth Ennis (author of the limited series Unknown Soldier, in which the title character, in a flashback to WWII, is shown massacring Nazi guards at Dachau)

Mark Evanier (author of a Crossfire story for a Free Comic Book Day comic involving a Holocaust survivor who tries to kill a suspected Nazi war criminal)

Jordan B. Gorfinkel (author-illustrator of Everything's Relative) ; Mr. Gorfinkel is probably not an exhibitor this year, but you might spot him walking by.

Phil Jimenez (illustrator of Wonder Woman: Donna Troy #1 and the Heroes online comic " Wireless Part One)

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

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")

Stan Lee (Jewish comics legend who co-created the Fantastic Four, which has a Jewish chartacter called The Thing and who appeared in the story "What if the Original Marvel Bullpen was the Fantastic Four?" in What If? #11)

Paul Levitz (author of "Tradition" in DC Comics' 9-11 September 11th 2001)

Miriam Libicki (author of the jobnik! series, the first volume of which has been collected in trade paperback)

Scott Lobdell (author of stories which appeared in X-Men #-1  and Uncanny X-Men #319, both of which dealt with Magneto's past)

Todd McFarlane (co-plotter of the story "Remains" in Spawn #103)

Ron Marz (author of the story "Crown Heights"in Witchblade #121, in which Sara and Patrick investigate the brutal murder of a rabbi in Crown Heights but find the strict Jewish community secretive and uncooperative)

Steve Niles (author of the golem story Criminal Macabre: Feat of Clay)

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

Chari Pere (author-illustrator of the webcomic Of Biblical Proportions) ; Chari was at booth #1930 on Friday, but I don't know where she'll be for the rest of the con.

Ben Raab (The Lost Tribe graphic novel, which debuted at the 2006 Comicon ; info with art at

Trina Robbins (author/illustrator of "The Triangle Fire" which was the cover story for the 2nd issue of Lilith Magazine)

Jerry Robinson (Batman series artist who also did illustrations forBible Tales for Young Folk)

Jon Rosenberg (author-illustrator of the webcomic Goats), which includes the Jewish character "Jon", as seen in the strip from Nov. 24, 2005)

Bill Sienkiewicz (illustrator of the story "Night Screams"in X-Men #159, in which Kitty is saved from Dracula by her Star of David necklace)

Gail Simone (who wrote the story "Li'l Krusty in Give a Hoot, Stay in School" in Simpsons #62)

Louise Simonson (co-author of issues of a Superman storyline {Superman : Man of Steel # 80-82}, in which Superman went to the Warsaw Ghetto)

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

Roy Thomas (who had the Thing battle the Golem in Marvel Two-in-One #11 and introduced Jewish superheroes Nuklon {Infinity Inc. / JLA} and Golem {The Invaders})

Judd Winick (author-illustrator of Pedro and Me and Caper #1-4)

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

Monday, June 20, 2011

comix side of the AJL convention

"Librarians on the loose"? Indeed!

This week, the Association of Jewish Libraries is holding its annual conference in Montreal.

Among the presentations that will be given on Tuesday, June 21st are :

Hereville by Barry Deutsch


From Life of Esther Visualized to Hereville : The Portrayal of Jewish Females in Comic Books, Comic Strips, and Graphic Novels.

The latter presentation will be given by Steven M. Bergson (the blogmaster of this very blog).

In conjunction with this presentation, a companion blog will be launched at

Comments are welcome.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Jewish cartoonists & infertility

This week (May 15-22) is Canadian Infertility Awareness Week. For more info, please go to the site of the Infertility Awareness Association of Canada.

In honor of CIAW, I am posting information about 2 comics which have been used to tell the stories of Jewish women artists who had problems getting pregnant and sought help at fertility clinics to no avail.

In 1994, Diane Noomin, wrote and illustrated the autobiographical story "Baby Talk: A Tale of 4 Miscarriages", which was published in the anthology Twisted Sisters 2: Drawing the Line.

In 2010, Phoebe Potts wrote and illustrated the autobiographical graphic novel Good Eggs, which dealt with her marrying a Gentile artist, considering becoming a rabbi, and trying to get pregnant.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Jewish Side of TCAF 2011 - May 7th & 8th

This weekend, readers, writers, artists, publishers and fans of comix will converge at the Toronto Reference Library to take part in the the FREE Toronto Comic Arts Festival  (which this year coincides with Free Comic Book Day).

Among the talented people who will be at TCAF this year are a small number of comix professionals who have done work that has already been mentioned at the Jewish Comics Blog.

* Willow Dawson, a talented Canadian artist, who has illustrated the anthology No Girls Allowed : Tales of Daring Women Dressed as Men for Love, Freedom and Adventure, written by Susan Hughes and published by Kids Can Press. The anthology includes the story of Esther Brandeau, the first Jewish person to immigrate to Canada.

* Barry Deutsch, author of the Eisner-nominated Hereville which won the 2011 Sydney Taylor Award (Older Readers category)

* Sarah Glidden, author-illustrator of the autobiographical How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less!, which is nominated for the 2012 Great Graphic Novels for Teens list

* Michael Jonathan, author-illustrator of the fictional webcomic Eros Inc. (starring Mot Fleishman) and the autobiographical webcomic Michael Jonathan is Jewish. Both of the webcomics have been collected into minicomics.

* Miriam Libicki, author-illustrator of the jobnik! series, the first volume of which has been collected in trade paperback, the illustrated essays "Towards a Hot Jew: The Israeli Soldier as Fetish Object" and "Jewish Memoir Goes Pow! Zap! Oy!" and the illustrated mini-journals Ceasefire and Fierce Ease.

* David Malki!, author of the Wondermark webcomic, which has been collected in trade paperback. Among the comics that have appeared on the site is one with the punch line "Hannukah bush", one about the Jewish New Year, one that uses the juice/Jews homonym joke and one about Hebephiles.

* Dylan Meconis, author-illustrator of the webcomic Family Man, about a Jewish academic named Luther Levy, who was unable to defend his dissertation because he was not Christian ; volume 1 may be purchased in person at TCAF or ordered online

* Jim Ottaviani, author of Wire Mothers: Harry Harlow and the Science of Love and Fallout : J. Robert Oppenheimer, Leo Szilard, and the Political Science of the Atomic Bomb

* Paul Pope, author-illustrator of the story "Berlin Batman" in The Batman Chronicles #11 (reprinted in Batman : Year 100), in which Batman is a Jewish painter named Baruch Wane.

* Jonathan Rosenberg, author-illustrator of the webcomic Goats, which includes the Jewish character "Jon", as seen in the strip from Nov. 24, 2005

* Li-Or Zaltzman, cartoonist currently working on a 100+ page coming of age story that takes place in Tel Aviv

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Israel and Comics / Discussing the Details

This Sunday (April 17th), Dan Friedman (Arts and Culture Editor of The Forward) will host a discussion titled "Israel and Comics: Beyond Black and White" about the challenges facing many Jews today, simultaneously hugging and wrestling with Israel.

Here's the official description :

While comics are often drawn in black and white, the work in Graphic Details shows that the relationship of North American Jews to Israel is anything but. With deep affection and sincere struggle these artists illustrate the intertwining of the personal and political, from Sarah Glidden’s conflicted experiences on a Birthright Trip to Miriam Libicki’s service in the Israeli army as “the least-kickass soldier in all of comics.”

Presented in association with the exhibition Graphic Details: Confessional Comics by Jewish Women.

The Toronto exhibition is being presented by the Koffler Centre for the Arts.

Time : 7:00 PM
Location : The Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen Street West

Earlier in the day, there will be a program titled "Discussing the Details with Graphic Details Artists"

Toronto-based artists Bernice Eisenstein and Sarah Lazarovic, featured in the Graphic Details exhibition will discuss how graphic storytelling became the medium for narrating their own life experiences. Moderated by Dan Friedman, Arts and Culture Editor of The Forward, the Media partner for Graphic Details.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Neil Gaiman in discussion with Paul Levitz - Thursday at Symphony Space

Today's blog entry is a part of this month's Jewish Blog Carnival.

Award-winning comics writer Neil Gaiman will be
appearing on April 14th at the Symphony Space in New York, talking about his life and his writing with Paul Levitz (former publisher at DC Comics).

Neil is probably best known for Vertigo's Sandman series (read the first issue for free at, Acrobat format).

Neil also contributed scripts for stories that appeared in the anthology Outrageous Tales of the Old Testament. Cyril Camus recently discussed how Neil's Jewish background contributed both to certain characters and concepts in the Sandman series, as well as to the critical way that he presented his adaptations in the Knockabout anthology (see The "Outsider": Neil Gaiman and the Old Testament in Shofar :An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies vol. 29, N°2).

Among other things, Paul Levitz was the author of "Tradition" in DC Comics' 9-11 September 11th 2001.

Date : Thurs., Apr. 14
Time : 7:00 P.M.
Place : Symphony Space (2537 Broadway at 95th Street)
Cost : FREE for Columbia Affiliates with ID (RSVP in advance and show ID at Box Office window)
Non-Affiliates: $10; Day of Show $15

Sponsored by the Institute for Israel & Jewish Studies and the Center for American Studies.

As a bonus for visitors coming to this blog from the Jewish Book Carnival, here is a video showing Neil discussing how his Jewish heritage has influenced his writing.

Friday, April 08, 2011

Creators of Jewish Comix at MOCCA Fest - this weekend

On April 9th and 10th, the annual Museum of Comic & Cartoon Art Festival will be held at the Lexington Avenue Armory (Lexinton and 25th) in Manhttan (New York), between the hours of 11 AM and 6 PM.

Among the creators of Jewish comic stories / art who will be in attendance are :

Jonathan Baylis (author of So ... Buttons mini-comic)

Josh Bernstein (a contributor to the magazine Royal Flush which includes stories of the "Mitzvah 4")

Nick Bertozzi (co-illustrator of Houdini : The Handcuff King)

Richard Codor (author-illustrator of Richard Codor’s Joyous Haggadah, Babushkin's Catalogue of Jewish Inventions and Too Many Latkes)

Willow Dawson, a talented Canadian artist, who has illustrated the anthology No Girls Allowed : Tales of Daring Women Dressed as Men for Love, Freedom and Adventure, written by Susan Hughes & published by Kids Can Press. The anthology includes the story of Esther Brandeau, the first Jewish person to immigrate to Canada.

Josh Eiserike (writer of the stories in the comic series Assholes, whose Liberal Crap comic strips for University of Maryland's Diamondback student newspaper included a cartoon about Jewish dating websites and a cartoon about the perks (and downside) of being Jewish)

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

Sarah Glidden (author-illustrator of the autobiographical How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less!)

Dean Haspiel (illustrator of many Harvey Pekar stories, including his graphic novels The Quitter and Ego & Hubris : The Michael Malice Story)

Al Jaffee (cartoonist best known for his work in Mad magazine, who also contributed artwork to Moshiach Times, who will be receiving the Klein Award)

Ben Katchor (author-illustrator of The Jew of New York and the upcoming The Dairy Restaurant

Neil Kleid (Xeric award-winning author / illustrator of Stable Rods, "Shomer Negiah", Pilgrimage : Two Weeks in G-d's Country, the graphic novels Brownsville and The Big Khan, as well as the forthcoming Migdal David)

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)

Paul Levitz (author of "Tradition" in DC Comics' 9-11 September 11th 2001)

David Malki! (author of the Wondermark webcomic, which has been collected in trade paperback). Among the comics that have appeared on the site is one with the punch line "Hannukah bush", one about the Jewish New Year, one that uses the juice/Jews homonym joke and one about Hebephiles.

Jeff Newelt (contributor to Heeb magazine)

Jerry Robinson (Batman series artist who also did illustrations for Bible Tales for Young Folk)

Mitch Rothenberg (writer of the comic series Assholes, which showed a Jewish date in the 2nd issue)

Leslie Stein (author-illustrator of the semi-autobiographical Eye of the Majestic Creature, as well as a short piece in Comics Festival, in which she made reference to her "Jewish nose")

Seth Tobocman (author-illustrator of Portraits of Israelis and Palestinians : For My Parents and "The Serpent of State")

Li-or Zaltzman (cartoonist currently working on a 100+ page coming of age story that takes place in Tel Aviv)