Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Social Realism in Comics

Social Realism in Comics - Reflecting Singapore and Japan in the 1970s
Date: Sat, 19 Jan 2013
Time: 5.30 pm
Place: Programme Zone, Bishan Public Library
Calling all comic book lovers, join in this session organized by SingaporeComics.com, the same people who brought you 24 Hour Comics Day in 2012! We will discuss two newly launched books – Ten Sticks And One Rice (Epigram Books), a local graphic novel on Singapore’s transformation from kampong to cosmopolitan city, by Oh Yong Hwee and Koh Hong Teng, and Midnight Fishermen: Gekiga of the 1970s (Landmark Books) by award-winning Japanese manga artist, Yoshihiro Tatsumi.

The creators of Ten Sticks and One Rice, Oh Yong Hwee and Koh Hong Teng, and comics critic, Lim Cheng Tju, will be part of the dialogue.c

Sunday, December 16, 2012


There was a big concert in NYC to raise funds for victims and the damage done by Hurricane Sandy.

Reading Ultimate X reminds me of Ultimatum. NYC was flooded by Magneto. That finally happened this year. Marvel was 4 years ahead of its time. Maybe the writer Loeb was thinking of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Once upon a time in China...

On my last day in Manila, I met up with Harvey Tolibao for lunch. He gave me a copy Green Arrow #12. Excellent art as usual. It's unfortunate that DC decided to take a different direction and replaced Tolibao with another artist. Hope they give a good book for him to handle soon. Tolibao has ideas for Oliver Queen. Maybe we will get to see them one day.

Now, the story is something else. Written by Ann Nocenti, an editor of The Uncanny X-Men in the 1980s, she created Longshot with Art Adams and later had a long run with Daredevil, following hot on the heels of Frank Miller, a tough act to follow by all counts.

Flashforward to 2012, she has returned from journalism to write for DC comics. Maybe the years in journalism gave her exposure to China, which she portrays as one of the most dangerous places on Earth. You wouldn't want to visit after reading this.

This is still a very caricatured image of the Middle Kingdom. According to Nocenti, you can get snatched from the streets and get thrown into prison. But the guards are stupid enough to get distracted by hologram images of strippers.

This reminds me of the fight between Gail Simone and Derek Teo back in 2007 when she visited Singapore as a guest for the writers' festival. She set a Birds of Prey story in Singapore in 2005 which Derek criticized.




Simone still pissed in 2009.


To see how Nocenti looks like.


Manila Madness

Was in Manila for this.


BL is getting big in SEA.

Took the occasion to visit the famed Comic Odyssey and met the boss, Sandy. Here are some field reports from Mark Cerbo, a cool blogger we met.


Oh yeah, Otto Fong was with me too. We gave a talk at the Ateneo de Manila University.

We definitely want to visit Manila again and check out Komikon. The president, Ariel Atienza, invited us back. Maybe next April.