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Author: Gregg

Oreo v. Hydrox: Taste Test & Analysis

It is rare for there to exist one version of a thing. Superman is not the only super-powered hero. MS Word is not the only word processing software. And Kellogg’s Raisin Bran is not the only raisin bran.

This is the case with chocolate sandwich cookies, which is the generic name for “Milk’s Favorite Cookie”, the Oreo. But if you visit your local cookie vendor, you’ll discover Famous Amos makes a chocolate sandwich cookie…Newman’s Own has their Newman O’s…and there are always the more generic, off-branded versions as well.

In the beginning, however, there was the Oreo and the Hydrox. And any trivialist or food nerd will quickly tell you that the Hydrox pre-dated the Oreo.

But the Oreo is the most well known. Oreo, like Xerox for photocopiers and Kleenex for tissues, has become the common-use term for the chocolate sandwich cookie (by way of example as MS Word spell-checks this very document, “Hydrox” gets the “you spelled this wrong” red underline; “Oreo”, no problem. In fact, it only corrects you if you fail to capitalize the O). This was the case for me even as a child, where I just assumed Hydrox was the “off-brand” version of the Oreo. I may not have been the only one, as years ago the first cookie, the Hydrox, was no longer available for purchase.

More recently, however, the Hydrox has returned. Labeled as a 100th Anniversary Limited Edition, you may once again find Hydrox in your local grocery.

Which led to the question: despite their chronology or popularity, what’s the difference, really?

“New Look” Hatter Entertainment Dot Com

In 1964, Batman debuted with his “New Look”. This “New Look” amounted to essentially the appearance of a yellow oval around the bat symbol on his chest. A simple change, to be sure.

In that spirit welcome to the “new look” Hatter Entertainment Dot Com…a two-point-oh, if you will. Aside from the surface aesthetics, you’ll hopefully find cleaner, clearer navigation. And perhaps the most notable change is this very news page with real, live blog technology.

In theory the new site will lead to easier and theoretically more frequent updates. So, be sure to check back from time to time…or even subscribe to the RSS feed (on the right side over there) if you’d like.

In the meantime, take a look around…there’s a bunch of new stuff to see and read and (hopefully) enjoy.

ad_new_lookA new wave of excitement, indeed.

End of 2008: No News Is News

It seems my slow-going revamp of this site isn’t quite ready just yet. But please, check back in the early part of 2009 for what I hope will be a hardly noticeable yet distinctly different Hatter Entertainment Dot Com.

In the meantime, have a happy holiday and all the best in the coming new year.


San Diego Comic-Con 2008

San Diego Comic-Con 2008 is right around the corner and I’ll be there, sitting in Artists Alley table II-18 (alongside pals and talented fellows Jacob Chabot (a real live Eisner Award nominee (for the uninitiated, that’s like comics’ Academy Award) and Chris Giarrusso (whose book Mini-Marvels: Rock, Paper Scissors will be available on 7/23 in comic shops everywhere). Stop by for sketches, sketchbooks, miniature comics (including chapter 2 of Pix: Teenage American Fairy (check the “Comics” section for chapter 1), and of course, banter. Lots and lots of banter.

In other news, a new hatter entertainment dot com, a two point oh, if you will, is in the works. My hopes are (a) it won’t take as long to get that up and running as it took to get this version up and (b) it’ll be SLIGHTLY more easy to update.

If those two things take, well heck, I just might be on to something.


New Stuff

Just in time for the holidays, all kinds of new stuff:

First up, speaking of holidays, a new holiday card for 2007 is up in Pictures.

In Comics, under “From What School?”, you’ll find a one-page comic based on a conversation about comics on a talk radio show (phew!) that may or may not entertain you.

And finally, under “Nickelodeon Magazine” in the Portfolio section, click on the li’l image of SpongeBob and Patrick on the bottom right. Why? Because there you’ll find my first official printed published writing work for Nickelodeon. Now, in the interest of full disclosure, this comic is appearing internationally first; someday it’ll hopefully see print here in the US. But, in the meantime, it’s here, on my site…That’s right: Exclusive!! (and when it does find its way to American shores, I’ll give you the scoop)

All of that said, I hope you enjoy it.


Mike Wieringo

This isn’t entirely news, especially to those who keep up with comics industry news, but this past weekend Mike Wieringo passed away, suddenly, at age 44. Mike was an incredible illustrator and cartoonist who was a favorite of mine and a great influence on my work before I got into the field professionally. And after my professional career got started and I got to talk to and meet him, my opinion of him only grew.

Some of the most fun I had in comics were the epically long chats with Mike and his studio-mate and occasional inker Rich Case (also very talented, indeed), and the first convention I attended professionally, Heroes Con in Charlotte, NC, in 1999. I was there as a lowly assistant editor from Marvel Comics, and the Artamus Studios crew, chief among them Mike and Rich, were so welcoming and I felt like they took me in as one of their own; an absolute pleasure – only to be topped off by nearly the entire population of comics pros going to see Disney’s Tarzan as that was the opening weekend. To be in that theater, with that group…among them now friends like Mike, with whom I’d often talked about our mutual love of the Disney style and its influence on us both…those are moments that are monumental to a developing young professional in so many ways.

Thank you, Mike for your influence, as an artist and as a friend.

It’s terribly sad to know he’s gone.


SDCC 2007 report

Back from Comic-Con in San Diego and the show was incredibly busy and very crowded…but in the end, worth the effort. It’s a good time, but a tough one just the same. As always, it’s great to see old friends and co-workers from the comics industry, as well as the “Friends of the Show” and folks who stop by year after year for new sketches. Phil’s BBQ, as always, delivered their usual deliciousness, as did Tin Fish’s fish tacos, the hand-made corn tortillas at the Old Town Mexican Café, and the newest discoveries, the San Diego Chicken Pie Shop and Extraordinary Desserts (holy cow, the Bette Noir cake was among the richest desserts I’ve ever indulged in).

Thanks to everyone who came by, hung out, and maybe bought a thing or two.

Also thanks to you who sent me scans of the sketches I did at the show. Those are up in the Pictures section in the appropriate category therein.