I didn't make most of the publisher's panels, they always conflicted with something more important. I only saw the Oni panel, in which Greg Rucka took blame and apologized for all the delays in Queen and Country this year. The series is continuing. Issues 29-33 will detail events referred to in the first chapter of his upcoming novel Private Wars (the sequel to A Gentleman's Game, just released in paperback.) The events, Operation Red Panda, involve Minders One and Two traveling to Iraq, and will close out Volume 1 of the series. Private Wars will be released in hardcover October 25th. Next up will be Q&C Declassified Volume 4, which will be the Tara Chace origin story, how she's recruited out of college, trained, and how shit happens when Steve Crocker enters the picture. Queen & Country Volume 2 will follow.
Q&C Declassified V2 Issue 2 is at the printer right now, V3 Issue 3 is being written now.
Greg has another project called Everest in the works, which he and his collaborator are being perfectionist about and won't rush. He warns not to expect it for at least another year or two.
Greg describes the London bombings as like someone walking on your grave. He insists that when you write fiction based on current events, you're going to be right sooner or later. I haven't yet read my copy of A Gentleman's Game, but from what Greg said, this month's bombings were eerily similar. I forget the incident, but he also said that some recently declassified intelligence material was also similar to something he wrote in Q&C.
If you aren't reading Greg Rucka's work, you really need to fucking start. As soon as I finish Half-Blood Prince I'll be catching up on his novels. The man is fucking brilliant.
Side note: I read the first two or three chapters of HBP when I got home from B&N on Saturday. Like Order of the Phoenix, the action jumps right the fuck off. It has a very Babylon 5 season 3 feel to it. Things are bad, in very bad ways.
Oni has some interesting stuff coming out in the next year, including Ping, a one-shot graphic novel about... kickball. The Leading Man will be about a hot actor who plays a James Bond-type superspy, who is also actually a James Bond-type superspy. Who runs into his opposite number, costarring in a film they're shooting in France. Sean Murphy describes his Off Road as a "quasi-tupid screwball comedy." The concept behind Borrowed Time by neil Shaffer sounds similar to that of JMS's Midnight Nation. Polly & The Pirates is a 6-issue miniseries about a socialite boarding school girl captured by pirates to replace their missing leader... her estranged mother. Antony Johnston's Wasteland is about a solo warrior wandering across a devastated U.S., a "Sci-fi post-apocalyptic Western," as he describes it. Armageddon And Son is about a boy who discovers his father is an evil spy who wants to destroy the world. Except his former associates now oppose him and they want to destroy the world their way. The author (I missed his name) describes it as "Queen & Country for retards." It's a comedy.
Quotes ad notes from Kevin Smith, back after a one-year absence at CCI:
- "I feel like I should bring out some loaves and fishes for y'all!", on seeing the size of the crowd packed into Hall H to see him. Several thousand people.
- "They're both like 'We love Mary Jane!' but inside, they both are thinkin', 'I wanna eat that guy's balls!'", on the Peter-Harry dynamic in Spider-Man
- "Are you willing to suck cock for your dreams? We all gotta start somewhere, you gotta start on your knees!" to a young filmmaker who asked Kevin how he should get the attention of established filmmakers like him. Kevin took a copy of the guy's flick to look at.
- Shooting of Clerks 2 starts September 12th and runs through mid-October, for an early 2006 release.
- Kevin was approached to cameo on Degrassi: The Next Generation. Instead, he proposed a 3-episode arc where he and Jay appeared to shoot part of a sequel to J&SBSB, Jay and Silent Bob Go Canadian, Eh? at Degrassi. It will air on the Noggin cable network this August, and release to DVD in September. (I'll note that several seasons of Degrassi Junior High, Degrassi High, and Degrassi TNG are already out on DVD. I will be joining Netflix just to catch up.)
- There will be a Degrassi: TNG feature film. Kevin will direct. He will start working on it as soon as Clerks 2 is finished.
- The 10th Anniversary Mallrats DVD will release September 20th, An Evening With Kevin Smith II: Evening Harder will release in October/November
Notes and quotes from JMS's return, also after a one-year absence:
- While attending a San Francisco convention, some asshole pulled the fire alarm at the hotel in the middle of the night. Ever the smart ass, Joe goaded the crowd of guests into a protest chant: "What do we want? We don't know! When do we want it? Whenever!". Someone panicked and called the cops. When prompted, the crowd fingered Joe as the ringleader. SFPD questioned Joe over it.
- Jeremiah is over. Period.
- I know I've heard/read this before, but in case you haven't, Amazing Spider-Man #36, the September 11th story, was written in 45 minutes flat, once the idea hit Joe.
- A fan asked Joe, "If your life were a video game, what music would play when you get the invincibility icon?" Joe called it the worst question of the day and gave the guy the plastic bag he brought four copies of the B5 movies in. The answer? "March of the Marionettes".
- "If there's a 10th circle of Hell, it's People." Joe was a stringer for the weekly mag once upon a time. He was in a meeting where a colleague proposed an article about a disturbing rise in rapes. The female editor declined to greenlight the story, saying "rape has been very good for us". Following that meeting, Joe cleaned out his desk and left.
- A fan asked why propaganda and the use of the media to spread it is a common theme in his works. Joe says he does it to try to illuminate how the media works, to encourage people to think critically about it. (If you've watched Babylon 5 and you don't at least wonder if Faux News is similar to ISN during the Clark administration, you're fucking stupid.)
- A fan asked what stimulates Joe while writing. He says music. Particularly Rob Dougan. Motherfuck...
I attended the Fark party Saturday night and had a good time. There were some interesting people there, including a nearly-18 recent Torrey Pines HS grad (the kind with breasteses,) the last type of person I expected to see at such an event.