Off-Panel: 11 Pop Culture Coloring Books

Welcome to Off-Panel, your weekly digest of comics news, from the gutters and beyond.

By and large, the nominees this year do reflect a relatively wide swath of talent. And while there are some expected names on the list, it’s not nearly as predictable as it could have been. That said, the nominations illuminate one troublesome topic—the Best Digital/Webcomic category. This isn’t to say that the nominees aren’t deserving—they absolutely are. But there is a problem when the Eisner committee conflates “digital comics” and “webcomics.”

Category fatigue just isn’t an argument I buy (see: Sound Design, no Tony Award for). But awards aside, the (non-hierarchical) distinction between digital comics and webcomics is an important one, and Paste makes it clear.

Fumihiko Sori (live-action Ping Pong) will direct the film. On adapting the source material, Sori said, “I want to create a style that follows the original manga as much as possible. The cast is entirely Japanese, but the cultural background is Europe. However, it’s a style that doesn’t represent a specific race or country.”

This news has me cautiously optimistic that we’ll be getting a Fullmetal Alchemist film that allows for both specificity and universality.

“Just because a word is in the dictionary doesn’t mean it can’t be part of a brand: just think of the global value of the Apple brand,” said Sherliker.

“But it will be surprising for people to learn that two huge comic book publishers, normally competitors, have united to ‘own’ this word and avoid others from using it.”

Those comic book publishers? Marvel and DC. That word? Superhero. For realsies. Thank goodness for one British businessman’s legal tenacity. And superhero superhero superhero. Also, superhero.

As you well know by now, coloring books aren’t just for kids anymore. These days, you can find coloring books about almost anything you can imagine. We’ve already compiled one list of spectacular pop culture coloring books, but there are so many available now that we had to make another. These books are the perfect way to de-stress while waiting for that much-delayed movie sequel or the next season of your favorite TV show.

It’s my wedding anniversary today! If you haven’t gotten us a present yet, our coffee table is yearning for one of the comics-themed coloring books on this list (especially number nine).

Here’s one way to deal with a hellish subway commute: stare at your fellow passengers, draw their portraits, and turn them into characters in a graphic novel. For the past year, that’s how Williamsburg-based graphic designer Lucio Zago, who was born in Italy and raised in Switzerland, has approached his daily descent into the L train crowds. The result is Williamsburg Shorts, an illustrated history of the Brooklyn neighborhood that’s become an international nexus of hipsterdom.

Last week, Off-Panel took you to Dean Haspiel’s Red Hook. This week, Lucio Zago’s Williamsburg. Vote for which Brooklyn neighborhood you want featured next!*

*jk this isn’t really a thing I’m doing on purpose

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