Till Eros went hentai, parent company Fantagraphics
' Gary Groth and Kim Thompson (and, more directly, my brilliant editor Michael Dowers) were, at least insofar as a freelancer can have one, my bosses. And very supportive, especially Kim and Mike(who has since moved on). If not for them, a great deal of what I've accomplished in the past three years--and if you count influence on my thoughts on comics, art and media, over twenty--would never have been done nor seen. They gave me my first professional publication and let me do as I liked, experiment, and develop. I owe them serious gratitude just for that.
In addition, both, along with Donna Barr, were instrumental in helping Working for the Man
to be the success it was. Kim Thompson did a great deal to stimulate interest and find creators. Gary, of course, wrote the introduction. Neither hesitated to do this to help Bill & Nadine Loebs three years back.
In addition, without their steadfast, and sometimes abrasive, dedication to this medium, comics would not be what they have become. Gary Groth and Kim Thompson, as publishers, have contributed more to comics being considered a medium of expression than, I think, any other non-creator connected to the industry. Without them, Peter Bagge, Dan Clowes, Chris Ware, Los Bros. Hernandez, Al Columbia, and so many more would probably not be the formidable figures they are now. And they have faced a serious and constant rain of shit for their trouble.
Such a rain is being dropped upon them by Harlan Ellison, about whom I'll say no more(I can't say worse of him than he's given himself a reputation for being
) except that this lawsuit of his is petty and childish, declared as a result of a personal vendetta by Ellison
And that is why I am breaking silence against my attorney's good advice, and stating firmly, without equivocation, in no way open to misinterpretation...BUY FANTAGRAPHICS if you wish. I have no problem with that, because in not even the smallest do I seek to impair the company marketwise. This is a PERSONAL MATTER, for the 500th time!! No First Amendment issues, no commercial angst, just trying to get Groth et al to get the fuck out of my life, completely, and forever. If that harms Fantagraphics as a side-issue, that's not my intent, but it IS Gary's choice.
It's a shame; I looked up to him for a long time as a teenager.
And I was introduced to his work by the Comics Journal, back when "An Edge In My Voice" was in it.
Introduced to Ellison via Groth & Thompson. I've already belabored the irony by mentioning it, I think.
I can now expect them to use it as a banner headline to promote their shitty vile Eros line or apply it as jiggery-pokery in some other skip-logic venue...Hey, that I resent. (And I'm also confused. "Jiggery-pokery"? "Skip-logic venue"?)
More about it here, including how to help Fantagraphics.
And one way is to buy something of theirs; three suggestions to click on at the bottom of this post; and this time, buy them new, otherwise Fantagraphics won't get any of it.
Court documents here.
Discussion here and here.
Good luck to Gary & Kim. They're great guys and vital to the past, present and future of comics, and no one has fought as hard for the medium's dignity. Fuck what other shit might be said about them.