I'm Rich Johnston. I write a rumour and gossip column for
the comics industry. This isn't it, Lying In The Gutters appears, here.
Been doing it for about ten years for a variety of different
people and even this week someone threatened me by saying
they'd blacklist my name across the comics community. Like that hasn't happened fifteen times over.
Nice to get the threat though, haven't been threatened like
that for a good three months. As to what this column is
- well it will likely morph into something very different.
But for now it's a place for me to ramble, review, profile,
basically get to know you all better.
first lets talk about me. Clearly,
as the most prominent rumour monger in the industry, I clearly
deserve a comic book or my own. Naturally, I don't think
anyone would argue with that. And from one of the top two
(and no, Barnes and Noble, I don't mean Viz or Tokyo Pop).
So I submitted a few pitches to Joe Quesada, to see what
he's make of them. Joe swiftly responded to each and every
proposals, offering constructive criticism and general praise.
The Maternity Hospital Where I Was Born
out of the womb, Frank Castle takes no shit. No sooner has
the cry gone out "It's a boy, Mrs Castle",
than Frank is scuppering a hospital drugs ring, throttling
an incompetent surgeon with a still-uncut umbilical and
exposing a scam involving a very large bedpan. And they're
still looking for bits of the doctor who dared to give little
Frankie a smack on the ass as he took his first breath.
Quesada's Response: This is without
a doubt an Ultimate title although we may have to cut the
umbilical scene (get it!) to make
it palpable for Walmart.
Response: How dare you try and stifle
my creativity? The umbilical cord is totally symbolic. Of
what I'm not sure, but give me a few hours and a bunch of
Alan Moore's Swamp Thing and I'll come up with something.
Ben is revealed to have been abusing Peter Parker as part
of a paedophile ring including Jarvis and Willie Lumpkin.
Parker jacks in his Spider-Man identity, writes an
tell-all autobiography implicating Aunbt May in the whole
sordid affair and goes on Oprah, where he cries for lots
Quesada's Response: Take out the paedophile
stuff and just insert "Written And
Drawn By John Byrne" and Peter will have plenty
to talk to Oprah about.
Response: I don't know, Joe. I think
people would twig straight away - you don't think my work
could match up to the wonder and glory of the likes of Lab
Rats, do you?
Logan: The Origin Of Wolverine's Penis
with Jean Grey on a bleak desert, Wolverine resorts to chopping
his own penis off, repeatedly, to give Jean Grey something
to eat. Each time it heals back, he chops it off again.
After Cyclops rescues them, one of Wolverine's penises is
left behind. His healing factor kicks, creating a new Wolverine
out of his own severed member. Eventually they meet up and
have a big fight. One is incinerated but no one is really
sure which survived. With hilarious consequences.
And Jean had a packet of Reese's Pieces in her back pocket
all the time, anyway.
Quesada's Response: So in the end both
combatants survive and one ends up being the new Cyclops?
Response: I've got my one-eye on you,
Mr Quesada... only I get to make the bad puns around here.
America: Polka Dot
history of Steve Rogers, pre-super solider seru,m
as an unfashionable fashion designer with unspeakable bespoke
tastes. His life changes when he gets a feeling that stripes
and stars may be the in thing in his industry, as Mr Hitler
goes about his business in Germany. But will those stripes make Roger's customers look fat?
Quesada's Response: This new version of
Steve Rogers seems interesting and could become a beautifully
conflicted character when he realizes how much better the
Response: Adolf Hitler's tailor by day,
America's number one
super soldier by night! Conflict! Creates! Character! I'll
send you a fifty page bible for this character by lunchtime.
folks, it looks like comic book stardom awaits.
What's that? Don't quit my day job? Too late, I did a month
But this week I started a new job, writing
radio advertising for an agency that works with some very
big names. This is a story about just one of them.
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