Big link roundup

Earlier this year, BOOM Studios caused quite a bit of controversy but also sold a lot of comics by distributing the first issue of North Wind for free online. Retailers howled at first, but quited down a bit when the issue posted record sales. Now they’re extending that strategy by adding webcomics to their site. They started off with several pages each of six different series and will update each with five pages a week. It looks like all the launch titles are from their backlist, and the intent is clearly to drive sales of print comics.

Last Sunday’s Fox Trot featured four webcomics. I wonder how many regular readers of the Sunday funnies would recognize any of these? Even Jason and Steve and I were puzzled by the fourth one, although we figured it out eventually. Are webcomics more mainstream than we think?

Also, the power of xkcd was demonstrated once more this week when Wikipedia had to lock down its “Wood” section after xkcd inspired people to insert too many inane “wood in popular culture” references.

Some interviews worth checking out: Tom Spurgeon talked to Daniel Merlin Goodbrey at The Comics Reporter last week. This is a pretty cerebral interview, and it’s also notable for Goodbrey’s recommendations for his favorite comics by other people.

Meanwhile, Dean Haspiel’s Street Code premieres on Zuda this week, and Rick Marshall interviewed him for ComicMix. We had a lively debate over Haspiel’s Immortal in our Eisner nominees podcast; I can already tell I’m going to like this one better, as the storytelling is clearer and the characters more specific.

Rick Marshall discusses Questionable Content with creator Jeph Jacques.

Chris Arrant talks to Thomas Baehr, creator of The End is Here, at Newsarama. (Via Journalista.)

This sounds interesting: Jen Contino speaks to Jane Irwin about Clockwork Game, her online comic (she calls it a “webcomic docudrama”) about a chess-playing machine that made a splash in Europe in the late 18th century.

We have a few milestones to note this week. Goats makes the big move to print, published by Random House imprint Villard no less. Rick Marshall and Gary Tyrell both talk to creator Jon Rosenberg about the deal.

In His Likeness reaches the 500th-episode mark, and Sean Kleefeld celebrates by explaining why that matters. (Via Comics Worth Reading.)

The Union of Concerned Scientists is running their Science Idol contest again. Choose your favorite from 12 cartoons about the distortion of science for political reasons. Voting closes August 8.

Richard Bruton reviews Freakangels, which he recommends reading in chunks, rather than a page at a time. Oh, and there’s a print version in the works.

And here are a few things that are just plain cool to look at.

Becky Cloonan has a webcomic, Comic Attack!

Mike Dawson’s Max! Get out of my room!! has been making hte rounds of the internet this week. Check it out if you haven’t already.

And Nick Mullins has freshened up his website, which should be on everyone’s RSS feed ‘cos his art is lovely.

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