Cynical Tabby

Today marks the 32nd anniversary of Garfield's first comic strip, which debuted in 1978 in over 40 newspapers.

Created by Jim Davis and named after his grandfather, Garfield held the Guinness World Record for the world's most widely syndicated comic.

While I was never into comics as a kid, I remember, quite fondly, watching the Garfield and Friends animated television series. However, nowadays, I know that kids are really into graphic novels, and so our collection of Garfield graphic novels will probably be more of a hit than that show from the 90s.

Either way, you can sit down, enjoy some lasagna, and have a good time.

June's Books to Film

Jonah HexJonah Hex

Jonah Hex is a movie based on the DC Comics Jonah Hex comic books.

"One of the meanest antiheroes in the comic-book world", bounty hunter Jonah Hex (played by Josh Brolin) has spent his entire life roaming from town to town searching for his next paycheck and earning it with a fierceness that's earned him a reputation for being a stern dealer of frontier justice. But behind that hard exterior exists a man who longs for the same comforts as any man - including love. (trailer)

The comic "Jonah Hex" began as a DC character first written by John Albano and Illustrated by Tony DeZuniga in the early 1970s.

Eclipse is based on Book 3 in theTwilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer.

Bella once again finds herself surrounded by danger as Seattle is ravaged by a string of mysterious killings and a malicious vampire continues her quest for revenge. In the midst of it all, she is forced to choose between her love for Edward and her friendship with Jacob --- knowing that her decision has the potential to ignite the ageless struggle between vampire and werewolf. (official trailer).

Kids Read Comic Convention June 12-13

2010 Kids Read Comics2010 Kids Read Comics

Kids Read Comics Convention is a totally free event that unites kids, teens, parents, teachers and librarians with professional artists and writers from the comics and animation fields. The aim is to introduce kids to worlds of imagination while unlocking their creative impulses and to serve that goal, programs included are:
• hands-on workshops
• panels and presentations for kids, families, and educators
• a chance for kids to meet and chat with comics and animation professionals
• the opportunity for kids to have their own art portfolios reviewed

Be sure to stop by the AADL Comic Artists Forum table to see and purchase the works of our homegrown participants.

This year’s convention will be at the Henry Ford Centennial Library in Dearborn, Michigan on Saturday, June 12 and Sunday, June 13 (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) .

May Books to Film, Already in Theaters

Iron Man 2 is based on Marvel’s Iron Man comic series. In this sequel, billionaire industrialist Tony Stark, now a famous high-tech superhero comes up against the U.S. military’s demands to control the most powerful weapon on earth -- the Iron Man suit, while being hunted by a vengeful Russian criminal with some lethal technology of his own. Meanwhile, he could no longer count on his beautiful new assistant or best friend, Rhodey who are hatching their own strange, mysterious agendas.

Letters to Juliet is adapted from Lise Friedman's Letters to Juliet: celebrating Shakespeare’s greatest heroine, the magical city of Verona, and the power of love - an enchanting love story of encountering new sparks and rekindling old flames. (The scenery isn't bad either).

When Sophie, a young American, travels to Verona, Italy -- the romantic city where Romeo first met Juliet -- she meets a group of volunteers who respond to letters written to Juliet seeking romantic advice. Sophie finds and answers a letter that has been lost for 50 years, and is stunned when its author Claire arrives in Italy with her handsome but overprotective grandson to find the man she left decades before. Fascinated by Claire's quest, Sophie joins them on an adventure through the beautiful hills of Tuscany searching for Claire's long lost Lorenzo.

Over the years, there have been various big screen and television interpretations of the legend of Robin Hood – from the recent TV series; Mel Brooks’ farcical Robin Hood Men in Tights; to Errol Flynn’s 1938 iconic The Adventures of Robin Hood. Now see Russell Crowe as a beefy Robin Hood .

Instead, fantasy and alternative history fan might opt to try Hood : The Legend Begins Anew by Stephen R. Lawhead. In this first of the King Raven Trilogy, Hood tells the story of an alternative Robin Hood. Steeped in Celtic mythology and the political intrigue of medieval Britain, the familiar tale takes on new life, fresh meaning, and an unexpected setting – “ …(a) highly imaginative, earthy adventure that has little to do with Errol Flynn but is just as rousing”.

Comic Artists Forum meets Sunday, June 6

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If you enjoy telling a story visually, drop in and meet other comics artists like yourself. Share your work, sketch out a new storyline or get fresh ideas for future comics or graphic novels. The basics: pencil, paper, eraser, ruler, marker are provided but you're welcome to bring your favorite drawing tools.

Our guest artists this month will be Anne and Jerzy Drozd. Anne along with Jerzy and friend Mark Rudolph created The Cosmic Adventure of Gena Kranz. As a cartoonist and teaching artist Jerzy creates comic books like The Front and Equalizers of the Divide, conducts workshops like this summer’s AADL Comic Book Academy for teens and Comics Fundamentals for older teens and adults, and serves as co-organizer for the Kids Read Comics Convention coming up June 12-13 in Dearborn.

Comic Artists Forum | Sunday, June 6 | 1:00-3:00 PM | Malletts Creek Branch | Teens and Adults | Guest Artists-Anne and Jerzy Drozd

Gunslingers and Dark Towers

Think of Clint Eastwood. Now think of King Arthur and his knights. Now think of post-apocalyptic horror stories. Now imagine all of these elements swirled into one epic series. This is The Dark Tower series by Stephen King. King has described this series as his magnum opus and has been releasing installments of it for the past 30 years. The first novel of the series, The Gunslinger, was published in 1982, and the 7th and most recent book of the series (confusingly also named The Dark Tower) was published in 2004. Suddenly, waiting a year for J.K. Rowling to release the next Harry Potter book doesn't seem like it was so bad.

Marvel Comics has created an ongoing series of graphic novels based on Stephen King's original series. The comics series of The Dark Tower acts as a prequel to the main storyline of the novels. The comics tell the story of how the protagonist, Roland Deschain, becomes the man known as the gunslinger. Marvel has released four collections of The Dark Tower graphic novel series to date, which you can pick up right here at AA

Comic Artists Forum meets Sunday, May 2

The next Comic Artists Forum will be back at Malletts Creek. Come and share your work, get fresh ideas for future comics or graphic novels. We provide the basics: pencil, paper, eraser, ruler, marker but you are welcome to bring your favorite drawing tools.

We’ll talk about what’s coming this summer – the Kids Read Comics Convention in Dearborn, AADL’s Comic Book Academy for Teens and Comics Fundamentals for older teens and adults.

Our guest artist this month will be artist/adventurer Ryan Estrada who travels the world making comics. Ryan’s work has appeared in newspapers, books (check Mystical Monkey in Flight Vol. 4), on TV (an animator on the pilot to Cartoon Network’s Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law), online and in galleries. He’s in the finishing stages of his graphic novel, Aki Alliance.

Comic Artists Forum | Sunday, May 2 | 1:00-3:00 PM | Malletts Creek Branch | Teens and Adults

Ryan EstradaRyan Estrada

Teen Magazine Update -- Ahead of the Game

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Do you enjoy being one step ahead of the game? Name dropping and looking cooler than your friends? Then this month's teen magazines are for you!

Wizard Magazine starts off this party with the "Wizard 20" -- a list of games, movies, artists, authors and comics that you should probably already know about. We are lucky enough to have many of these pearls of awesome here at the AADL -- such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer graphic novels. Not to be missed in this edition -- the ten worst superhero girlfriends of all time!

This month's issue of Rolling Stone Magazine features two old school masters of awesome -- Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck, two of rock music's most amazing guitarists. Also in this issue, comedian Tracy Morgan discusses his hard-knock life, and Matt Taibbi tells us how Wall Street is setting the entire country up for a fall. Good times.

For the awesome girls out there, Justine Magazine features bios of Elissa Bernstein, author of the scrumptious blog 17 and Baking and 17-year-old tennis star Melanie Ouden. And, talk about being one step ahead of your friends, this issue also features a ten-step prom countdown and a guide to job hunting, from resume to interview.

Comic Artists Forum in March

drozd dinodrozd dino

Looking to share your work and get some fresh ideas for your next comic or graphic novel creation? Join the monthly forum. Bring your favorite drawing tools and drop in for a few hours of drawing, learning, and sharing. This month’s guest artist will be Mark Rudolph. Check out his Closing Doors and Other Yarns.

Comic Artists Forum | Sunday, March 7 | 1:00-3:00 PM | Malletts Creek | Teens and Adults

Bill Watterson Lives!

Bill Watterson, the cartoonist who created the beloved comic strip "Calvin and Hobbes,” is a notorious recluse – so much so that he has been called the J.D. Salinger of the cartooning world. Watterson hasn’t been seen or heard from since he announced his retirement – and the end of Calvin and Hobbes – back in 1995. So it came as a surprise yesterday to see that Watterson allowed himself to be interviewed by the Cleveland Plain Dealer in a story published on Feb. 1. This is his first interview since 1989. When asked why he ended his strip after just 10 years of newspaper publication, Watterson said “It's always better to leave the party early. If I had rolled along with the strip's popularity and repeated myself for another five, 10 or 20 years, the people now "grieving" for "Calvin and Hobbes" would be wishing me dead and cursing newspapers for running tedious, ancient strips like mine instead of acquiring fresher, livelier talent. And I'd be agreeing with them.”

Nevin Martell is one person who disagrees with that sentiment. He recently published the book Looking for Calvin and Hobbes, in which he chronicles the story of the strip and details his personal quest to track down Bill Watterson. Martell never got the chance to interview Watterson (his letter of request went unanswered), but he did interview many other people close to Watterson who could provide insights into the cartoonist’s life, inspirations, and motivations. The lack of Watterson’s voice makes the book largely speculative, but it is fun to read other cartoonists praising Watterson and recounting their love for the 6-year-old boy and his tiger. Notable fans of Watterson’s include humorist Dave Barry, author Jonathan Lethem, and cartoonist Bill Amend (creator of the strip FoxTrot). In fact, nearly every contemporary cartoonist or graphic novelist considers themselves to have been influenced or inspired by Watterson. I think that speaks to the legacy of Calvin and Hobbes – a legacy that Watterson himself downplays, desiring only to return to his quiet, private life in the Cleveland suburbs. Fortunately for his millions of fans, Watterson has donated his original artwork to the Cartoon Library & Museum at Ohio State University in Columbus. In museums and in comic books, Calvin and Hobbes will live forever.

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