Saturday, June 28, 2008

Blake Bell interview on PCBR is a hit!

Several of my very good friends each told me how much they enjoyed the interview I did with Blake Bell on my radio show on Tuesday, June 24. Blake was talking about his brand new book called STRANGE AND STRANGER: THE WORLD OF STEVE DITKO.

Blake is expertly versed in the work of Steve Ditko, of course. Not just for the last several years worth of research for his book, but he's maintained the internet's premier Steve Ditko website for 10 years.
Blake talks about his first exposure to Ditko's work in the form of this 1977 pocket book reprinting the first six issues of Amazing Spider-Man.

I tell folks that the interview works so well because the guest is knowledgeable, passionate and articulate. I did indeed prepare for the show with more extensive notes than usual. Mostly to keep us both on track. There is so much to talk about in Ditko's 50-plus year career, as well as the path his choices have taken him. And to be honest, the third thing I credit for such a successful podcast is that Blake and myself are diehard fans of Steve Ditko.

One thing I wanted to make sure came across in the interview was the fact that no matter how many times Stan Lee considers himself the sole creator of Spider-Man, the fact of the matter is that two people created that character, the writer and the artist. Regardless of my admiration for Stan's work in comics, the truth about Ditko's contributions cannot be dismissed by Stan with any fanciful word play. Comic book fans would do good to get a better perspective on the Stan Lee/Steve Ditko collaboration. (And the Stan Lee/Jack KIrby collaboration, for that matter.)

Another thing I loved about doing this episode was that I had my nephew Christian hanging out with me in the studio, listening in to my interview with Blake. Well, after talking to Blake, I decided to do an impromptu interview with Christian!
While he's not a comic book artist, he has picked up the art bug (From where, I don't know....). Anyway, we talked about his drawings and paintings, and even a little bit about when his Uncle J used to by him McFarlane Spawn action figures!

I'm really glad I took Christian in the studio with me. I've been hoping he'd one day accompany me, and this was a perfect episode to have him on. He's probably heard me talking about Steve Ditko for most of his 17 years!

That's the great thing about doing this radio show with the fine folks at Perspective Radio. I have carte blanche to produce the show the way I see fit. Of course my objective is to create a popular show that brings us a loyal audience, and a good amount of sponsors. But I get to have a weekly show were I talk to such a wide-variety of people creating comics in print, the web and even syndicated newspapers. And I also talk to people who create websites and books and products drawing from many aspects of the comic book culture.

Blake, thanks for providing my show with an amazing hour of interesting dialoge on one of my creative heroes.

And Christian, thanks for hanging out with Uncle J. Love ya.

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