Friday: Day of Fri

*No clue what that meant.

*The Comics Journal has updated its main page, listing the contents of its upcoming issue, the first in its new format. Highlights for me:

First things first: a 36-page Alex Toth comics section, reprinting lots of 1950’s material in color.

Plus: “Goodman Goes Playboy” by Kurtzman and Elder!

There’s also an interview with Toth.

And a chat with political cartoonist/journalist/filmmaker Steve Brodner.

Steven Grant is doing a commentary piece.

Eddie Campbell (an excellent critic) reviews “Blooming Books” (I’m guessing this is the 2003 overview of Raymond Briggs’ career)

Tom Spurgeon covers lots of stuff, like “Usagi Yojimbo”, “Smax”, “Demo”, and “Planet of the Capes”.

And hey kids, new Gary Groth editorial! It’ll put hair on yer chests!

There’s also a link to part one of Dirk Deppey’s “X-Men… Retreat!” article, which presumably will discuss the problems of the current X-books and how they’re indicative of Marvel’s current creative policies at some point in the future, since part one is devoted to discussing Marvel policy from the 1990’s up to the end of the Jemas era. It’s a nice refresher, and it’d make a good overview for someone unfamiliar with Marvel, but it’s a lot of stuff that I (and I suspect many readers) already know quite well. Much more entertaining are Deppey's detailed web-only reviews of quite a few early X-Man: Reload titles, including "Excalibur" #1-2:

"As established above, I'm not exactly Chris Claremont's biggest fan, but even so I can't help but wonder if he didn't get the Marvel writer's version of latrine duty on this one. It certainly smells like latrine duty... I have now become completely demoralized. Everyone involved with this shambling mound of a story deserves eyeball acne. The kind with lots of pus."

Read them all.

*The Olympics start today. They’re in Greece, so that means that everyone will be naked, right? That’ll be nice, although I bet NBC will slap some CGI clothes on everybody; is there an all-naked Olympics pay-per-view? That’d be worth a party. I think the last mostly-naked cultural pay-per-view event was Woodstock III. From what I’ve been told it was like “Animal Instincts 4: The Rock Opera”, with the concert itself lit aflame in the end rather than only the characters’ passions.

Wow, Bjork is opening? That’s pretty cool (new album “Medulla” out Aug. 31 – no instruments, all vocals). I wonder how the Olympic television audience will take it, though? I remember several people in the room with me loudly expressing their disapproval when she performed at the Oscars for that Lars von Trier movie, and I don’t think it was Lars’ lyrics that disturbed them. Bjork just doesn’t really sound like anyone else; I love it. It’s like an ice pick to the brain, but in a good way.

Shit. It’s at 8:00 tonight? I’ll have to put a tape in or something. I think there’s some sort of technological advancement known as TiVo that could make the process easier, but it’ll probably be cheaper to hire people to enter my apartment and hit ‘record’ at the right time. I hope they don’t steal my liquor.