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Review: Nita Hawes’ Nightmare Blog #1

Nita Hawes’ Nightmare Blog
Nita Hawes’ Nightmare Blog #1

Rodney Barnes, Patric Reynolds and Jason Shawn Alexander are making sure they leave a mark in the world of horror comics with the quickly expanding universe of Killadelphia. It started with the backup story Elysium Gardens, focused on a pack of black werewolves that are trying to track down a coven of witches during the LA riots of 1965. It now continues with Nita Hawes’ Nightmare Blog, the story of a woman that runs an urban legends blog that is finally getting confirmation on the truth behind the horrors she writes about.

The new series takes a stab at another city with a long history of racial tension and racial violence not unlike that found in Philadelphia: Baltimore. The comic refers to the city as “Bodymore, Murderland,” a name suggested by Killadlephia’s own Jimmy Sangster, who is revealed as Nita Hawes’ ex-boyfriend. Nita is the surviving member of a family that’s been cut down by police shootings and police brutality during peaceful protests and fateful encounters with law enforcement.

Nita is visited by the ghost of her murdered younger brother as a music studio massacre, perpetuated by a hellish entity that loves to carry a tune as he goes about his killing, just starts to come within eyesight in her investigations. The son of one of Baltimore’s wealthiest men lies among the victims of the massacre, a key detail that also opens the door for a female detective character that will surely cross paths with Hawes.

Where Killadelphia feels like a sprawling historical vampire epic that rises from the most neglected parts of Philadelphia and into the national stage, Nita Hawes’ Nightmare Blog feels more like the back-alley investigations wing of the expanded universe. It aims to populate Killadelphia’s world with new horrors the main book might not be able to fit into its pages. Killadelphia has its hands full with Founding Father vampires and the fast spread of blood-sucking mania.

Nita Hawes’ Nightmare Blog

Fans of Kolchak: The Night Stalker will find Nita Hawes oozes with that same 1970’s vibe that made the classic TV series such a chilling and endlessly watchable piece of horror fiction. Like Kolchak, who was a reporter that investigated the news stories he stumbled upon with the journalistic integrity they deserved no matter how supernatural things got, Nita seems to possess the same deep thirst for truth that puts fact before conspiracy in the face of the unexplainable.

Also like the Kolchak movies and TV series, Nita Hawes looks ready to offer up monstrous metaphors for the problems facing inner city race relations, both past and present. Kolchak battled vampires and undying spree killers in the age of serial killers, especially out West (in and around the California area). Nita’s nightmares can very easily follow suit, only the focus is clearly set on the black experience in Baltimore.

Patric Reynold’s art is as effective as Jason Shawn Alexander‘s has been throughout Killadelphia. There’s a grittiness to the horror he captures on the comics page that makes each panel feel dangerous, unsafe for its characters. The work on display takes readers outside their comfort zones and places them in a world where security is but a fantasy we let ourselves believe can be achieved. It allows for pure terror to take over the story at every corner.

Nita Hawes’ Nightmare Blog #1 is the type of comic that supports and builds upon the foundations of the main title it sprouts from while also telling a story that it can legitimately call its own. It owns its part in the grand scheme, but it also makes sure it’s essential for the enjoyment of the entire experience. Nita Hawes is ready to make the world of Killadelphia meaner and scarier.

Story: Rodney Barnes, Art: Patric Reynolds
Layouts: Jason Shawn Alexander
Publisher: Image Comics
Story: 10
Art: 10
Overall: 10
Recommendation: Buy and then binge Kolchak: The Night Stalker for added flavor.

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Purchase: comiXologyAmazonKindleZeus ComicsTFAW

Facebook Fandom Spotlight: Comic Blogs 7/29/2013

Comic fans are a passionate bunch, with blogs filled with opinions of writers and readers. So, who are the people who are fans of such sites? We take a look at this week’s Facebook Fandom!

For this report, I searched for some of the most popular comic book blogs out there, a much more difficult task than you’d think. I used just those terms to figure out these stats. This reports is also a global look, so fans are from across the world representing over 20 countries.

Facebook Population: Over 4,800,000 fans Globally

That’s about 10% of the global comic book fan population. Spanish speakers account for now 400,000 fans, 8.33%, much lower than the general global fandom, but better than the US’s blog fans which is 4.51%

Gender and Age

If you think it’s men that frequent these sites, then you’re right. Men dominate the fan base with 70.83% of fans globally and even more in the US, with a whopping 80.28%. So, ladies, if you feel like you’re outnumbered, you’d be correct. For general comic fans, men account for 61.9% in the global population.

Comic Blog Fans

blog facebook gender 7.29.13

We’ll next look at how the percentage of women and men break down through age.

Comic Blog Fans

blog age gender facebook 7.29.13

It’s similar to the global fan trend.

Comic Blog Fans

blog facebook age 7.29.13

Relationship Status

This is very similar to the global comic fan stats, just a few less are married, but more are engaged.

Comic Blog Fans

blog relationship facebook 7.29.13

And for those that like pie charts.

Comic Blog Fans

blog relationship facebook pie chart 7.29.13


Here, blog readers have higher percentages as far as education across the board compared to global comic fans.

Comic Blog Fans

blog education facebook 7.29.13

Gender Interest

While the men interested in men percent is similar to the general global comic fandom, women interested in women is much lower, by almost 4 percentage points.

Comic Blog Fans

blog interest facebook 7.29.13

Join us Monday when we look at fans of comic book movies and this Thursday for our first of the month report!

Shout out the Lady Drawers. Publishers Take Note, Simple Marketing Works.

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Marketing has been a hot discussion recently between publishers, bloggers and store owners, so when something unexpected happens, it only feels right to highlight it. Friday I came home to find a postcard in my mail, and only receiving a half dozen pieces of mail a week at the most, it stood out.

Immediately I saw this:

lady drawers

Well, that certainly caught my attention.  On the back was this handwritten url:

The website http://ladydrawers.wordpress.com/ was started in April 2010 and the site is “devoted to all things gender and all things comics. ”

The website was created to see serious discussion, but it’s even better that they’re willing to get their hands dirty and get the word out about it the old school way through a mailing.  A simple postcard is a lot more than some publishers are willing to do.

GeekChicDaily Gets Investment

Official Press Release




Ben Lerer, CEO & co-founder of leading digital lifestyle publication and commerce platform Thrillist, joins GeekChicDaily as a strategic advisor

– (Tuesday, January 25, 2011) – GeekChicDaily, the leading pop culture, opt-in email newsletter and publisher has successfully completed a strategic transaction with Thomas Tull’s Legendary Pictures, and closed on an investment round led by Revolution Studios Founder Joe Roth and Seattle investor and internet pioneer Mike Slade. Joining the round as new investors will be industry notables Gamespy founder Mark Surfas, EA and Activision veteran and current Legendary Digital President Kathy Vrabeck and Machinima Chairman/CEO Allen DeBevoise. Existing investor and Clear Channel Chairman of Media and Entertainment Robert Pittman and his partner Andrew Russell will also join the round. Pittman and Russell invested in thriving newsletters DailyCandy, Thrillist, Tasting Table and VitalJuice. Proceeds from the raise are earmarked for infrastructure, further brand extension and marketing of the daily publication.

GeekChicDaily, a shot-in-the-arm focused on all things popular culture (comics, video games, film, television, toys, collectibles and applications) debuted in October 2009. It was co-founded and is operated by digital media and video game veteran Peter Y. Levin. Gareb Shamus, co-founder of GeekChicDaily is also founder of Wizard World which owns and operates 12 comic conventions across the U.S. GeekChicDaily’s current investors include Clear Channel Chairman of Media and Entertainment Bob Pittman, Mandalay Entertainment Group CEO and former Sony Pictures Chairman and CEO Peter Guber, as well as the Japanese media juggernaut Yoshimoto Kogyo.

“In a short amount of time, GeekChicDaily has established a voice and tone that resonates with an audience we are consistently servicing,” stated Revolution Studios’ Joe Roth. “We are thrilled to add GCD to our arsenal and plan to leverage them as a resource for marketing and discovery. We look forward to working closely with Peter and his team to grow the GeekChicDaily brand.”

In addition, Ben Lerer, CEO & co-founder of digital lifestyle publication Thrillist has joined GeekChicDaily as an advisory board member whose ranks include former DailyCandy CEO Pete Sheinbaum, Andrew Russell, Managing Partner at Bob Pittman’s Pilot Group and Broadway Video CEO Jack Sullivan.

“This group represents all we could ask for in terms of strategic investors and partners,” said GeekChicDaily CEO and co-founder Peter Levin. “As a popular culture product, the collective experience, street credibility and access this group brings to the table will be invaluable as we continue to grow the business.”

About GeekChicDaily:
GeekChicDaily (www.geekchicdaily.com) is a free, opt-in, daily email newsletter and cross-platform publisher appealing to popular culture enthusiasts with a focus on comics, video games, film, television, applications, toys, collectibles and gear. GeekChicDaily was founded in October of 2009 by digital entertainment entrepreneur Peter Y. Levin, Wizard World founder Gareb Shamus and Mandalay Entertainment Group CEO and former Sony Pictures Chairman and CEO Peter Guber.

About Legendary Pictures:
Founded in 2004, Legendary owns, produces and delivers some of the world’s most popular intellectual property, focusing on franchises targeted at mainstream audiences but with a special emphasis on the powerful fandom demographic. With partner Warner Bros., Legendary Pictures’ productions include the recently released, critically acclaimed Inception, which has been a box office smash grossing more than $823 million worldwide, as well as global blockbuster Clash of the Titans ($493 million worldwide), The Dark Knight ($1 billion worldwide), 300 ($456 million worldwide) and The Hangover ($467 million worldwide). The company has established itself as a trusted brand which consistently delivers high-quality, commercial entertainment, and through complete or joint ownership, Legendary is building a library of marquee media properties. Among the film projects that Legendary is currently developing is an adaptation of the phenomenally successful interactive game universe Warcraft, to be directed by Sam Raimi (Spiderman); Godzilla, based on Toho Company’s famed character; Warren Ellis’ Gravel; and Mass Effect, based on Electronic Arts and BioWare’s hit videogame franchise. Legendary Pictures recently launched Legendary Comics, and will debut its inaugural publishing work in the first half of 2011.

About Joe Roth:
Joe Roth is the founder of Revolution Studios. In seven years of operation Revolution released 47 films, including Black Hawk Down, XXX, Maid in Manhattan, Anger Management, and Rocky Balboa. He most recently produced Alice in Wonderland for Disney with Director Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp and Knight and Day with Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz for Twentieth Century Fox.

Prior to founding Revolution Studios, Mr. Roth served as Chairman of both the Walt Disney Studios and Twentieth Century Fox. In 2004, Mr. Roth was the Emmy AwardÒ nominated producer of the 76th Annual Academy Awards, which won an Emmy AwardÒ for Outstanding Directing for a Variety, Music or Comedy Program.

Equally noted for his diverse civic and charitable activities, Joe Roth has received various awards such as the 1991 Variety Club’s Man of the Year award, the 1996 Humanitarian award from the NCCJ, The 1997 American Museum of Moving Image award, and was honored in 1998 by APLA and The National Multiple Sclerosis Society. He was also the recipient of the 2004 Dorothy and Sherill C. Corwin Human Relations award from the American Jewish Committee.

Joe Roth is the majority owner of the Seattle Sounders FC, a Major League Soccer team.

About Mike Slade:
Mike Slade began his career at Microsoft in 1983 and spent seven years there in a variety of product marketing roles. Products he introduced to the market at Microsoft include Excel (1985), Works (1987), and Microsoft Office (1989). He served as director of corporate marketing in Microsoft’s systems software division before leaving in late 1990. He has served on several public company boards, including Metricom, Inc (1994-96); The CKS Group (1996-98), and Aquantive (2002-2007) before it was acquired by Microsoft. Slade became CEO of Starwave, Paul Allen’s trailblazing venture into the Internet and multimedia products arena, in 1993. While at Starwave, Slade launched ESPN.com ABCNews.com and the Go.com network, among other premier websites that have now become household names. Mike Slade retired as chairman and chief executive officer of Starwave Corporation upon the completion of its sale to the Walt Disney Corp. in late 1998.

Slade spent 1991-92 as the VP-Marketing for NeXT Computer, Inc., reporting to Steve Jobs. From 1998 until 2004 Slade consulted for Apple Computer CEO Steve Jobs, where he sat on the executive team.

Slade has also worked as a strategic consultant for the NBA, Starbucks, Real Networks, Disney, the NFL and various Paul Allen companies. Slade co-founded the venture capital company Second Avenue Partners in 2000. He currently sits on the boards of the following companies: Azaleos; EmptySpaceAds; Fanzter; Fantasy Moguls; Professional Bowler’s Association; RealSelf; Flowplay; Kiha Software; and TheWrap.com. In 2000 he became a co-owner of the Professional Bowlers Association and is actively involved in that company today.

Slade earned a B.A. in Economics from Colorado College in 1979, and an MBA from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business in 1983. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of Colorado College, and serves on the board two other nonprofits: Pandrillus and Seattle Theatre Group. He has two teenage daughters and he and his wife, Megan, have two young sons.

Friday Five: Top 5 Comic Book Blogs

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When I’m not writing and reading at Graphic Policy or blogging about politics all over the place, I do like to read another of other comic book-related blogs. Here are my five favorites. These aren’t necessarily the greatest comics blogs in the world (although some of them certainly are), but they are the best of the blogs that I read and of the ones I’ve seen. If you know of something better than what’s on this list, let me know, because I should be reading it.

Honorable mentions: Comic Book Resources’ main blog is one of the best sources out there for info on comics, so it really is must reading (or at least skimming) for fanboys. Seduction of the Indifferent: Short reviews and commentary on classic comics and topics (including some non-comics stuff).

5. She Has No Head: Kelly Thompson mostly reads different stuff than I do and she only posts once a week, but what she has to say is always worth reading.

4. Robot 6: A good news-oriented comics blog that also includes reviews and commentary that I often find enjoyable. Again, the tastes stray a bit away from mind quite often, but overall, good stuff.

3. Law and the Multiverse: Not limited to comics, but certainly limited to awesome. This blog takes a serious look at how the law would interact with various issues in a comic book/superhero world. Very good concept and very good content.

2. Girls Read Comics Too: A blog about comics and the portrayal of women in comics and the creation of comics by women written from the perspective of several funny and intelligent women? Yes, please! And they read a lot of the same stuff I do and they often interactive features frequently.

1. Comics Should Be Good: This is what got me into comics blogs. Brian Cronin is one of my favorite writers, regardless of what the genre of writing is. He has a great conversational style that works for both experts on a topic and newbies. No matter how much you know about comics, you’ll certainly learn something new nearly every time you read his stuff. His Comic Book Legends Revealed (and other Legends Revealed stuff) is must-reading. On top of that, this blog has the most lists and regular features that really get you drawn into the awesomeness of comics and the great debates, the great artists and the great writers. My Friday Five series was inspired by Cronin’s work and I read his stuff more than I read most political stuff and that’s what I get paid to do. On top of that, the blog has a number of other contributors, all of whom are good writers as well. If you like comics, of any genre, you’re hurting yourself by not reading Comics Should Be Good.

DC New Media Fail

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When it comes to using websites and new media it seems the comic industry is woefully behind.  We’ve been critical and highlighted the numerous failures of some of the companies in their attempts to use these tools to promote their properties and comics.  Last night we had a face to palm moment as a staffer for DC comics attempted to go back and forth on Twitter with another blogger.

When attempting to respond to this tweet from @dcwomenkicknass:

The @DC_Nation tweeter posted this:

But here’s the problem, she asked about a list of bloggers that deal with DC comics, similar to the blog roll we have on our right or the list of publishers.

And that tweet linked to this:

DC BlogThat’s clearly not what she asked for.  It’s a landing page that links to the four blogs DC comics maintains.  That’s fine and dandy, except that page is actually a blog page in itself.  You can tell that by the navigation on the left.  And the header of the post.

It just shows the lack of understanding of websites in using the wrong type page for what you’re trying to accomplish.  Sure it works but so does a shoe to drive in a nail.  I’d rather use a hammer.  How about just a “content page” that makes the point of the page a little clearer?

With a content page you’d also have the ability to style it a little better, kick out the unnecessary left navigation (which adds to the embarrassment by highlighting the one post) and make the point of this page clear.

Here’s a better idea, how about using this blog to highlight important posts from the other four blogs?  Crazy concept, I know.

The whole concept of a blog roll was overlooked (we’ll be adding one soon along with a whole lot of other upgrades) and the question and comment wasn’t answered.  That’s just bad use of new media and yet another example of how DC comics misses the mark when it comes to this vital area of communication.

WisCon Rescinds Invite to Elizabeth Moon

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WisCon which bills itself as a “feminist science fiction” convention has rescinded it’s Guest of Honor invitation to science fiction author Elizabeth Moon.  The reason for the cancellation of the invitation was due to a blog post where she covered 9/11, religion and remarks about the Islamic community center in lower Manhattan.  All pretty touchy subjects.

Organizers had expressed concern over the post but decided to rescind the invitation.

The convention will be held in Madison, Wisconsin in May, 2011.

Introduce Myself

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For my first post here, I’d like to introduce myself and thank Brett for giving me the keys to the kingdom.  As Brett mentioned, I’m usually a political blogger and activist, but I read comics in my spare time and I think a lot about the political content of the comics I read, frequently seeing things in the comics others don’t or maybe projecting politics on them that might not be there.  A quick web search would show you that I’m not exactly on the Sarah Palin side of the political spectrum, to put it mildly.

Beyond that, though, I do read comics because I really, really enjoy them, politics or not.  I particularly like superhero comics and horror comics.  I’m mainly a Marvel fanboy, but I like a lot of what DC does and I’m reading more and more indie comics as well.  I also like it when comics make it into other medium like movies and television.   I’m more of a content person than an industry trends person, but that won’t stop me from writing about both if they interest me.  My reviews, when I do them, will conform to the format that Brett has already established.  I’m more of a fan of the writing and storytelling (and love in-jokes, dialog and pop culture references), but I have an appreciation for the art as well, but don’t have as good a grasp at writing about that aspect of it.  I also like the history of the comics, too, and won’t just be writing about current comics, but will go all the way back in the history of superheroes and monsters.  I also read lots of comics blogs and will sometimes respond to things that I read there.  I’m not a cynical comics reader much, so don’t expect me to hate on everything I read, although I will be critical when I feel it’s necessary.  I love comics and I love superhero comics, though, so expect me to talk more about the things I like in those genres than what I don’t like.

My favorites:

1. X-men titles

2. Avengers titles

3. Walking Dead

4. Spider-Man

5. Deadpool

6. Marvel’s cosmic stuff

7. Whatever the current big cross-over events are

8. Thunderbolts

9. Secret Warriors

10. Batman

So expect my writing to lean towards those series.  I’ll also do “quick hits/random thoughts” posts from time to time when I come up with enough of them to warrant a post.  Those will cover thoughts I have that don’t warrant full posts but still need to get out of my head somehow.

Well, that’s about all I have to say for now and I look forward to being a part of the Graphic Policy family.

Welcome New Graphic Policy Contributor Kenneth Quinnell

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We’ve hinted that there’d be some changes coming to Graphic Policy.  The first is a new contributor in Kenneth Quinnell.  Kenneth is a fellow political operative and a long time comic book reader starting with X-Men #145 which he got Christmas Eve 1981.  This sparked his addiction and got him collecting primarily Marvel and DC.

After a bit of a break, he got back into comics focused primarily on Marvel and is currently catching up on what he’s missed as far as DC goes and branching out to the indies.

He’s currently working on a comic of his own.

Expect a lot more politically focused posts from Kenneth and join me in welcoming him.

Marvel vs. Comics Invasion Round 2… Fight!

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Well that was quick.  A few days ago we brought you news that Marvel had shut down the link sharing site Comics Invasion that was on the Blogspot blogging platform.  The comic book company served Google (which owns Blogspot) with a cease and desist to take the website down.

Comics Invasion then moved to WordPress, and now that’s gone due to violation of the platform’s “terms of service.”

Where will it wind up next?

comics invasion wordpress

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