Secret Headquarters

Turnstyle News features Secret Headquarters in new comics-themed series The Funnybook Business

Turnstyle spotlights hipster Silver Lake comic book store Secret Headquarters in a new NPR-style slideshow/audio series by Noah J. Nelson called The Funnybook Business.

I’m interested to see how the rest of Nelson’s series turns out. Turnstyle features often get picked up by NPR, The Huffington Post, Time and other larger outlets.

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Friday is Brought to You by Guitar Kitteh

Things to do this weekend in LA:

COMEDY – The X-ecution: Final 4! Kathie Bostian of the Magic Meathands is still in the running! It’s elimination-style improv comedy with $500 and meetings with top talent agencies at stake. Find out who gets eliminated and who moves on to the next week at The Improv Space in Westwood, Friday, 8-9 PM. Tickets: $10.

BOOK RELEASE – Surreal painter/cartoonist Tom Neely has a book release and signing for his new release The Wolf at Secret Headquarters in Silver Lake, Friday, 8-10 PM. Tickets: free. [Interview/preview at LA Weekly]

COMEDY – The Magic Meathands (with me!) and Jump Start: two improv comedy troupes for one night of spontaneous funny, at The Spot Café in Culver City, Saturday, 8-10 PM. Tickets: $7.

COMEDY – Comedy Revival features over a dozen stand-up comics (Steve Simone, Matty Goldberg, Abbey Londer, Hailey Boyle, Francisco Abello, Rosie Tran, Kelsey Cook, Mark Alderson, TK Kelly, Matina Bevis, Erin Hart, Adam Barnhardt, and Ted Twyman!) in the Belly Room of The Comedy Store in Hollywood, Sunday, 8-10 PM.

This Friday is brought to you by Human-Tolerating Kittehs

Things to do this weekend in and around LA:

FESTIVALHollywood Fringe is on! See a ton of everything in a bunch of places all over Hollywood, until June 26. Includes a variety of art, such as Pulp Shakespeare (What if Pulp Fiction was written by William Shakespeare?), Marathon Redux (a sampling of Theater of NOTE’s eclectic mix of performance art), Voices From Chornobyl Jr. (interactive/educational theater for kids about the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant Disaster), and much more. Tickets: various.

COMICS – Book signing by Gene Luen Yang (American Born Chinese) and Thien Pham for their new graphic novel Level Up published by First Second Books, at Secret Headquarters in Silver Lake, Friday, 7-9 PM.

COMEDY – The X-ecution: Final 5, with Kathie Bostian of the Magic Meathands in the top 5! It’s elimination-style improv comedy with $500 and meetings with top talent agencies at stake. Find out who gets eliminated and who moves on to the next week at The Improv Space in Westwood, Friday, 8-9 PM. Tickets: $10.

THEATER – The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged), a parody of Willie the Shake’s plays performed by 3 men in 2 hours from Accidents Happen Theatre, at Nadia’s Rhythm Room, Sherman Oaks, Saturday, 8-11 PM. Tickets: $12 online, $15 at the door.

COMICS – Graphic Novel Sale where you can buy 2 and get 1 of equal or lesser value free at Golden Apple Comics, Hollywood, until Sunday.

This Friday is brought to you by Banana Battling Kitteh

Sort of a sequel to this.

Things to do tomorrow in LA:

Mini-Comics Day at The Comic Bug in Hermosa Beach, Saturday 12 noon – 7 PM.

The 45 Show opening reception, an art gallery show of work using cover art of vinyl records, co-curated by my friend Robert Rodriguez of Wanted Records, at the Twenty Miles East Gallery in Pomona, Saturday 5 PM – 9 PM. Gallery is open through April 9.

Family-friendly improv comedy show with the Magic Meathands (and me!) and Jump Start at The Spot in Culver City, Saturday 8 PM.

Release Party for Undying Love by Tomm Coker and Daniel Freedman at Secret Headquarters in Silver Lake, Saturday night.

(Video via I Can Has Cheezburger.)

Vote Best Comics for CityVoter LA’s Hotlist

Collector's Paradise - Currently at 1st place

CityVoter LA has posted online ballots to determine their LA Hotlist for 2010. They’ve been doing this since 2007 and this year there’s a Best Comics category. Oh how far we’ve come!

Collector’s Paradise in Winnetka has been appealing to their customers to vote for them, and so far it’s paying off. They’re at 1st place right now, followed by Metropolis Comics in Bellflower for 2nd and Njoy Games & Comics in Northridge has 3rd place. Other nominees include The Comic Bug, House of Secrets, and Golden Apple Comics. If your favorite store isn’t listed, you can also do write-ins.

Comic shops also pop up in other categories. Best Art Gallery has three comics-related nominees: comic shops Meltdown Comics and Collectibles and Secret Headquarters both have galleries, and Every Picture Tells A Story specializes in comics art. Hi De Ho Comics is running in the Best Bookstore category.

As an added incentive, voters are entered into a $10,000 Staycation Sweepstakes.

Voting ends March 18. Winners will be announced March 25.

LA Comics News Roundup: publishers kickstart 2011

All the news that’s fit to shove through internet tubes. Here’s the world of comic books and graphic novels in LA and beyond over the last week or so, with some commentary:

= Boom! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon gets the prestigious Comics Reporter Holiday Interview treatment, talking about the culture and climate of the LA-based publisher and his journey to his current position. Read it

= Silver Lake store Secret Headquarters was named Bookstore of the Week by the LA Times book blog Jacket Copy. More acclaim for a shop that in 2008 was named one of the World’s 10 Best Bookstores by The Guardian. The LA Times article also gives mention to local LA artists Martin Cendreda (Catch Me If You Can) and Sammy Harkham (Crickets). Meanwhile, I have somehow still not checked out this store. Read it

= The ever-expanding Comic International: San Diego could add a balloon parade through downtown San Diego to kick off the festivities. City Council District 4 President Tony Young, a self-proclaimed comic book collector and fan, floated the idea in his New Years address and expanded on the idea in an interview. Read it

= Comics industry numbers from Diamond Comic Distributors, the primary method comics publishers get their comics and graphic novels to comic book stores and other outlets, has released their reports on 2010 and as expected print comics took a hit. “Annual sales of comic books, graphic novels, and magazines to the comic book specialty market declined slightly in 2010, down 3.5% from 2009.” Comics industry number-cruncher John Jackson Miller estimates that the industry generated $415 million last year. The comic shop market hit a peak of $437 million in 2008. However, he counters this gloom with data showing the fourth quarter of 2010 ending 2% up from fourth quarter 2009 due to graphic novel sales. This supports some cautious optimism from some as early signs of a turnaround. Read it: part 1, part 2, part 3 (more…)