Wednesday, September 11, 2002


That's what it's all about. I went to my meeting at the hotel prepared to lose a client due to series of misunderstandings that escalated into unnecessary verbiage and ill-will. When I began to talk though, I decided to simply try to be as forthright and honest without losing my integrity or giving in to an unfair resolution, offering honey instead of vinegar. The result? The relationship is saved, both parties have a good laugh and cigarettes are passed around.


It began this morning when I received an email from Budjette asking questions and reflecting about the state of the comic book industry here. He wanted an opinion on whether the current propensity of creators towards manga/anime is a fad or something that's here to say, among other things.

I replied and told him that it was part of the natural evolution of things, how certain movements in the sea of popular culture affect a society and all that. My bias against manga/anime is no secret, and while I refuse to join the bandwagon, I think that there is still space for many things. I'm just upset at the fact that some artists cannot differentiate between having influences and copying something wholesale. Perhaps I will change my mind in 20 or so years, when whatever manga/anime stylings become assimilated, integrated and regurgitated into something distinctly our own.

Later, I met Kensai, who, with his father, is putting out the Darna comic book later this year (see the teasers at over at Jason's). We are all very excited about this project because it's Darna, to be published in full color and with obvious craft and devotion. Anyway, we got into a discussion about Budjette's topic, and Kensai was delighted at the state of comics today. His points included the fact that comics were being recognized as legitmate literature, that people werr reading more, and that not everyone has to join the bandwagon. All true. His excitement over the Darna project was contagious and he has all the support we can provide.

So is the state of comics good or bad? Despite my feelings towards manga/anime, I acknowledge the fact that they're here to stay and are a powerful force of influence. Many new comics are coming out (Witch, Ground Zero, Armor Troopers, Zodiac) and Culture Crash is going strong. There's Darna and Atlas in the wings. In addition, you have stuff like Carl's "One Night in Purgatory" and the award-winning "Isaw, Atbp.", plus all the other regular and semi-regular books. Alamat will always be a head and shoulders above the pack, hopefully producing more new work. And there's the new stuff coming from Dynatica, Tala Studios, MAD, 2Yu, QuestVentures and Kestrel Studios in the next 12 months.

I agree with Kensai. It's a great time for comics.

Read what you like.


I also met Gerry tonight and he shared something precious to admitted porn afficionados like me. Thanks, man.

Also talked to Ruey de Vera about publishing. He pointed me to one of my beloved teachers, Jing Hidalgo, who's now in charge of the University Press over at UP. I also tempted the gods by jesting about National Artist Nick Joaquin's award-winning translation of old Spanish newspaper columns. Ay naku, long story.

Reading Material

Fables #5
Happy Endings


Dreamscapes (Camille's blog), Bloom County (I really really miss Opus), Village Voice (for my favorite porn review column), Disturbing Search Requests, and Upwords (my word game of choice).



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