Comics Lowdown: Stan Lee’s former manager’s legal troubles grow

Plus: Stolen comics, cease and desist letters, Ted Talks, Jesus and more.

Legal woes for Stan Lee’s former caretaker and manager, Keya Morgan, continue to grow. He has been arrested and appeared in court in Arizona to face the charge of being a fugitive of justice. And he is also being sued by Joan Celia Lee, Stan Lee’s daughter.

In May, Morgan was charged with felony counts of false imprisonment of an elder adult, theft, embezzlement, and forgery or fraud against an elder adult, according to the Los Angeles Superior Court. The LAPD has revealed some of the details on why they brought charges against him.

“Morgan removed Lee from his Hollywood Hills residence to a secured Beverly Hills condominium during the late night hours of June 8, 2018,” the Los Angeles Police Department said in a statement. “Morgan was using this tactic to further deceive Lee into believing he was in danger and needed to be moved from his home to a more secured condominium where Morgan had more control over Lee.”

The LAPD will eventually extradite Morgan to L.A. to face the charges.

Crime: 14 comic books worth more than $42,000 were stolen from Denver’s famed Mile High Comics. Owner Charles Rozanski said on Facebook that the stolen items included early issues of Avengers, Atom, Justice League of America and Iron Man, as well as New Mutants #98, the first appearance of Deadpool. The thief cut himself while stealing the comics, leaving blood behind, and Rozanski also posted a still from a video showing the thief.

Max Brand’s Silvertip, by Everett Kinstler

Passings: Everett Kinstler, who is probably best known for the portraits he painted of presidents and famous people, has passed away. Before becoming a portrait artist, Kinstler worked in comics. He was active with Dell Comics, Fawcett Comics, DC Comics, Ziff-Davis Comics and Atlas Comics in the 1950s, and also drew covers for pulp novels. He was 92 when he died on May 26.

Controversy: At The Beat, Samantha Puc talks to Joshua Luna about the rejection of his graphic novel Americanizasian by Image Comics, who he has worked with previously on books like Girls and Ultra, and subsequently talking about the book’s rejection on social media.

Legal: Via press release, Devil’s Due Publishing has stated that DC Comics issued a cease and desist letter “stating a limited-edition issue of its now-infamous Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Freshman Force features a cover that violates their Wonder Woman copyright.” Devil’s Due has created a replacement cover, which they are calling the “Cease & DCist Edition.” A portion of the proceeds from its sale will benefit charity.

Creators + Interviews

The Walking Dead #192

Interviews: The New York Times — your go-to major news outlet for comic book spoilers —spoke with Robert Kirkman about this week’s issue of The Walking Dead. Yes, there are major spoilers discussed, so click at your own risk.

Craft: Writer Jim Zub shares tips for young creators on how to find a publisher. Speaking of Zub, he recently gave a Ted Talk about being a fan of role-playing games as a kid and how they sparked his creativity:

Profile: Writing for Publisher’s Weekly, our own Brigid Alverson spoke to Chris Ware about the fall publication of his Rusty Brown stories by Pantheon. “In regular fiction, printed words on the page are translucent, if not transparent, creating images in the reader’s imagination—which is, by far, one of the strangest and most unpinnable phenomena there is,” Ware said. “Whereas in comics the reader ideally ‘reads,’ or sees through, the drawings to have the simultaneous sensation of something happening not only in their own minds, but also before their eyes.”

Interviews: Over at the MNT, Taneka Stotts talks to Marie Anello about anthologies, her creative process and more.

Profiles: The Shropshire Star has a lengthy article on John Wagner, co-creator of Judge Dredd

Chris Pizer and Matt Wagner, circa 1990

History: AdHouse publisher Chris Pitzer remembers the time he invited Matt Wagner to speak at his college.

Interviews: Mark Russell and Richard Pace discuss Second Coming, their “super hero Jesus” comic that was dropped by Vertigo after an ultraconservative European advocacy group petitioned for its cancellation, and was resurrected by Ahoy Comics.

Commentary

Lists: Jay Edidin shares “The 9 greatest X-Men stories of all time.”

Lists: Abby Hargreaves at Bookriot shares “11 Narrative Songs That Should Be Graphic Novels.” I’d buy a “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” graphic novel by Kyle Starks and Chris Schweizer.

Lists: If you’re looking for something to red this summer, Bustle has you covered with “20 New Graphic Novels & Memoirs To Pack In Your Carry-On This Summer.”

Lists: Cartoonist Jennifer Camper shares “14 fabulous moments from the 2019 Queers and Comics conference in comic form.”

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