Thursday, January 28, 2016

Matt on Fatman on Batman!

Matt & Kevin on Fatman on Batman
I taped an epic 2 1/2 hour Fatman on Batman with Kevin Smith, and it's now uploaded for your listening pleasure! This covers a lot of ground for sure, but it revolves primarily around an unpublished Batman page I bought years ago that may be evidence of Jerry Robinson's contribution to the Joker and an alternative origin story for Robin. My comic geek friends will love this, and everyone else is bound to learn a lot about me.

I was honored and humbled to be invited on Kevin's show and even more so to be given so much air time, which I used to give as much credit as I could to some of the great people who have played an important part in my particular story and to give shout outs to some other fine folks:

Billy Shire, La Luz de Jesus Gallery, Fantastic Store Comics, Meltdown Comics and Collectibles, Gaston Dominguez-Letelier, Tony Scott, Mel Brooks, Comics Legends & Lore, Paul Marcure, Paul Glavin, Tim Cole, Thomas Sniegoski, Ai Honda Kennedy, The Goblin Market, Døc Gillespie, Wacko: Purveyor of Post-Pop Culture, Sean Francis Kennedy, Howard Hallis, Joel Spielman, Hollywood Book & Poster Co., Panik House Entertainment, Liberation Entertainment, CaseNegra Entertainment, Pinky Violence, Chris D., Hector Cruz Sandoval, Lindsay Way, James Euringer, Troma Entertainment, Lloyd Kaufman, David Shultz, Blue Underground, James Gunn, John Kantas, Eric Caidin, David Gregory, Joyce Shen, José Rodolfo Loaiza Ontiveros, Larry Edmunds Bookshop, The Wu-Tang Clan, Tom Neely, Glenn L Barr, and my Mom and Dad. Many thanks to you all!

Stream it here on the Smodcast site.

Tune in every Sunday for a new episode of Pod Sequentialism with Matt Kennedy!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Cracking the Code of the Blockbuster Imperative

I can't tell you how many times I've been in a comic book or collectibles shop and overheard a conversation about how badly a studio handled a project beloved from another medium, or how another project would have been a better idea.

Fans have definite opinions about these things but they are infrequently consulted because they rarely back-up those opinions with trackable purchase power.

In researching the 14th episode of the Pod Sequentialism podcast, I crunched numbers from  a bunch of different sources (including a great article by the Hollywood Reporter's Pamela McClintock) and came across a pattern that can't possibly be lost on the studios.

In fact, it's an actual formula for box office success that has thus far only experienced a 5% margin of error. I feel like Christian Bale in The Big Short; like I've combined enough data to reach a conclusion that has to be worth a fortune to the right people. But, instead of knocking on studio doors, or writing my own article for The Hollywood Reporter or Variety, I'm imparting this knowledge to you, my listenership.

Stream it here on the Meltdown Comics site.
Or Subscribe here via iTunes.

Tune in every Sunday for a new episode of Pod Sequentialism with Matt Kennedy!

Monday, January 18, 2016

Is Cosplay Killing Comicon?

Actress Milynn Sarley, my guest on Episode 12
As a regular attendee to comic conventions, and as someone with friends in the industry who rely on convention income I noticed a tendency for retailers to bash cosplay.

Comic book shops now definitely don't look like they did when I was a kid. Until the 1990s most comic shops were dark rows of long boxes filled with poly-bagged back issues, walls decorated in matrixes of mylar-covered first appearances, and windows covered in promotional posters that prevented almost any light from breaching the shop until someone opened the door. And we wondered why the only women were aggravated moms whose teenaged boys didn't hear the car horn because they were arguing over the merits of the Teen Titans over the X-men.

But for the last 25 or so years, slicker, brighter and more versatile retail design has transformed the hobby from a collection of library/caves into pop-culture superstores. Back east, Newbury Comics was the first to diversify a newsstand mentality into a punk rock record store with cool t-shirts, toys AND comics. In Los Angeles, Golden Apple's original Melrose Ave location was the celebrity hangout where one might bump into Los Bros Hernandez or go to a Neil Gaiman signing. Other smaller shops on both coasts found a niche that their audience enjoyed in addition to comic books and gave it visible real estate–Comics, Legends, and Lore where I worked as a teen had a full wall of gaming miniatures and was THE role-playing Mecca of the North Shore of Boston. Fantastic Store in Hollywood had a gigantic, paper mâché Thing hanging over it–and Tony Scott picked it as the comic shop location for his Quentin Tarantino scripted masterpiece, True Romance.

The competition noticed and the now places like Meltdown Comics and Collectibles are almost the standard, or at least the ideal toward which new shops strive. Bright without teetering completely over the edge of information overload, and hosting weekly events for audiences that probably don't even read comics.

Bob Violence, from the pages of American Flagg!
In other words, comic shops have always evolved to survive, so it's always bothered me that cosplayers have repeatedly been blamed for "killing comicon" by retailers who haven't found a way to cater to their new, visible attendee base. I've always enjoyed seeing people wear their fandom, but I haven't dressed in character since BosCon '86, when my mother sewed a Bob Violence (look to the left) costume and let me spend a weekend (unsupervised!) with my older peers at a fancy hotel in Boston. So I called in my favorite cosplay expert: Milynn Sarley!

Milynn is a co-creator of Team Unicorn, and has acted in TV shows and co-hosted gamer and entertainment programs.

She's also beautiful and smart, and one of the nicest people I know.

I sincerely apologize that this one wasn't a video podcast.

Click here for the live-stream link!

Click here for the iTunes page for Pod Sequentialism with Matt Kennedy.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Stranger than (Dr.) Strange

Howard Hallis: World Authority on Dr. Strange
Happy New Year!

With the Winter Solstice exactly thirteen days behind us, we thought it perfect timing to launch Pod Sequentialism with Matt Kennedy's interview with Dr. Strange expert Howard Hallis. The two dig deep into the occult origins of comic book magic, the Crowleyan underpinnings of everybody's favorite comic book sorcerer–and a whole lot more!

Howard Hallis has the largest independent collection of Dr. Strange ephemera. From the comics to original art and merchandised paraphernalia, Howard has been adding to his ever-expanding Dr. Strange Museum for nearly four decades. But Howard is no stranger to the mystic world of true magick, either.

Hallis has a long curriculum vitae that spans an art degree from UCLA (studying with Paul McCarthy and Mike Kelley), a music career with the seminal Yidcore band Gefilte Fuck, recording the death of 60s psychedelic guru Dr. Timothy Leary for posterity via live stream video, and the pioneering lenticular work, The Picture of Everything–a gigantic, 15-foot-high drawing of ALL things pop culture (covered in the pages of Wired magazine).

It's a history lesson sure to make Benedict Cumberbatch proud!
Click here for a live stream, or subscribe to the Pod Sequentialism podcast on iTunes.