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1. Just the Facts, Ma’am: Which Graphic Novel Categories are the Biggest?

BISAC chart Just the Facts, Maam: Which Graphic Novel Categories are the Biggest?Ever wonder what categories are the most popular in graphic novels?

Think it’s all manga and superheroes?

Well, as you can see on the chart to the left, it’s fairly diverse.

How did I come up with these percentages?

Simple…

First, there’s this group called BISG.  They make sure all the standards that booksellers and publishers use work.  One thing they standardize are called BISAC subject codes.  These help booksellers to categorize what they sell, either online or onshelf.

Books In Print is a big database run by R.R. Bowker, who also manage EANs and ISBNs for Anglo-American publishers.  If it’s got an EAN, they list it.  Even for the rinky-dink publishers you’ll never hear of.

With a little trial and error, and hacking of URLs, I figured out a way to search BISACs for specific years.  That’s a work in progress, and I’ll publish that data at a later date.

But it’s quite easy to search for EVERYTHING by a specific BISAC code, regardless of date.

Here are the numbers for the above chart:

TOTAL 72,992
TOTAL Manga 15,143
TOTAL Juvenile 9,802
Superheroes (CGN004080) 8,811
General (CGN000000) 17,996
TOTAL Everything Else 21,240

Some caveats:  BISACs are assigned by publishers.  A title may have more than one BISAC subject code.  A title may have a “graphic novel” BISAC, yet not be a graphic novel.  (For example, a Golden Book easy-to-read Spider-Man story book.)  Version 2 of the BISAC subject codes dates to November 1997, which predates the modern era which started in 1999 with the importation of Pokemon titles by Viz Media.

(Library subject headings are just as muddled.  Some titles use “Comic books, strips, etc.”; some use “Graphic novels”.  But if we standardize the search terms, one can still study trends.)

Note that graphic novels for kids outnumber superhero titles for a general trade audience…

Manga’s numbers have decreased over the years (2013, Manga only had 14% of the titles), and “everything else” has grown (36% in 2013).

What’s it all mean?  Stay tuned…  I need to fill in the years from 1970 to 2011.

Here’s the raw data for each BISAC subject I could find, including ones since deactivated.  (Yes, they still show up…)

CGN000000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / General 17,996
CGN001000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Anthologies 880
CGN002000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Comics & Cartoons 393
CGN003000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Educational 9
CGN004000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Graphic Novels / General 1547
CGN004010 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Crime & Mystery 1309
CGN004020 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Erotica 522
CGN004030 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Fantasy 2778
CGN004040 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Horror 2056
CGN004050 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / General 10291
CGN004060 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Media Tie-In 1426
CGN004070 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Science Fiction 2322
CGN004080 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Superheroes 8811
CGN004090 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Romance 266
CGN004100 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Crime & Mystery 169
CGN004110 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Erotica 56
CGN004120 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Fantasy 2004
CGN004130 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / LGBT 57
CGN004140 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Historical Fiction 126
CGN004150 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Horror 412
CGN004160 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Media Tie-In 237
CGN004170 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Nonfiction 42
CGN004180 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Romance 816
CGN004190 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Science Fiction 754
CGN004200 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Sports 117
CGN004210 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Yaoi 62
CGN004220 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Manga / Religious 7
CGN005000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / History & Criticism 175
CGN006000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Literary 1479
CGN007000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Nonfiction 752
CGN008000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Contemporary Women 159
CGN009000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / LGBT 138
CGN010000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Historical Fiction 319
CGN011000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Religious 93
CGN012000 COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS / Adaptations * 21
ART004000 ART / Techniques / Cartooning 905
HUM001000 HUMOR / Form / Comic Strips & Cartoons 3642
HUM002000 HUMOR / Comic Books, Strips, etc. 42
JUV033070 JUVENILE FICTION / Religious / Christian / Comics & Graphic Novels 117
JUV008000 JUVENILE FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / General 6025
JUV008010 JUVENILE FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / Manga 867
JUV008020 JUVENILE FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / Superheroes 1306
JUV008030 JUVENILE FICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / Media Tie-In 413
JNF028010 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Humor / Comic Strips & Cartoons 239
JNF049190 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Religious / Christian / Comics & Graphic Novels 40
JNF062000 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / General 327
JNF062010 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / Biography 166
JNF062020 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Comics & Graphic Novels / History 302
TOTAL 72992

6 Comments on Just the Facts, Ma’am: Which Graphic Novel Categories are the Biggest?, last added: 10/21/2014
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2. 31 Days of Halloween: Chris Schweizer’s Monster Month

swamp ape 31 Days of Halloween: Chris Schweizers Monster Month

As you can imagine, we’re not the only website counting down Halloween month. Chris Schweizer, comics educator and the man behind the delightful Crogan’s Adventures series from Oni, is posting a mostly daily monster picture  and here’s today’s the Florida Swamp Ape. You can see the rest in the link like this Ghost Rider in the Sky:

ghost rider 31 Days of Halloween: Chris Schweizers Monster Month

 

 

 

 

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3. Buy a copy of The Walking Dead Vol. 1 with an original oil painting by Ben Templesmith for an absurdly low price

Walkingdead5 Buy a copy of The Walking Dead Vol. 1 with an original oil painting by Ben Templesmith for an absurdly low price

Well, $412 seems absurdly low to us, anyway. 

Renowned horror/fantasy artist Templesmith has been experimenting with hand-painted covers for several books, and this is an original one of a kind oil painting done on a copy of The Walking Dead Volume 1. The painting was varnished, and I don’t know if you can read the book inside, but it seems to me that this is a pretty darned sweet collectible…especially for Halloween.

Also…Christmas is coming.

More Templesmith stuff at the 78Squid retail website.

1 Comments on Buy a copy of The Walking Dead Vol. 1 with an original oil painting by Ben Templesmith for an absurdly low price, last added: 10/20/2014
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4. Today’s Marvel Mystery Event: House of M

House of M 2015 Todays Marvel Mystery Event: House of M

 

Today we stroll down memory lane to 2005. People were going to theaters to see Anakin lose his limbs in Revenge of the Sith, the last Star Trek movie wrapped up, and Harry Pottermania was well underway, And four young comedians were making us laugh on SNL as repertory players, Bill Hader, Andy Samberg, Jason Sudeikis and Kristen Wiig.

At Marvel, House of M was all the rage, as Brian Michael Bendis and Olivier Coipel explored a world drawn the imagination of the very powerful mutant known as The Scarlet Witch…events which would spill over the Marvel U for years to come.

In this image by Jorge Molina, Magneto, Wolverine, Gambit, The Hulk Psylocke, Ms. Marvel and that darned Spider-Man are all battling…something. And you’ll notice that Magneto is battling a raging…something else entirely.

3 Comments on Today’s Marvel Mystery Event: House of M, last added: 10/21/2014
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5. Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy

 Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy

While nerdlebrity comics lines are common now—from Shia LaBeouf to DMC—a pioneer in this regard and still one of the best in terms of quality is Burlyman Comics, which is owned by the Wachowskis, the directing siblings behind The Matrix, the much beloved Speed Racer and the upcoming Jupiter Ascending. The company has been around for about a decade and launched about a decade ago with Doc Frankenstein by the Wachowskis and Matrix storyboard artist Steve Scroce, and Shaolin Cowboy by the all around genius Geof Darrow. Burlyman put out 7 issues of Shaolin Cowboy before fading away—the seriesfollow the  adventures of a nameless Shaolin and his mule in an apocalyptic American West—a concept that seems maybe too simple until you know that Darrow is drawing it with all his hallucinogenic detail. The tagline “A buddy picture with a body count” explains it all.

When Burlyman more or less disappeared, Dark Horse picked up the series, starting last year. But now the original 7 issues, long out of print, are coming back in a collected edition…from Burlyman. According to pr, the issue includes “ass-ologues by the Wachowskis” and many other extras—including art and alternative covers (what they used to call variants‚ by Moebius (Jean Giraud), Mike Mignola, Kevin Nowlan, Ricardo Delgado, Scott Gustafson, And John Severin. At a mere $19.99 it sounds like a bargain.

Retailers note, the FOC on this is the 23rd, order code OCT141229. On sale date is December 3rd.

And in case you need any more persuasion here’s a preview—to say it is mind-boggling does not do it justice.

shaolin trade preview 00001 Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy shaolin trade preview 00002 Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy shaolin trade preview 00003 Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy shaolin trade preview 00004 Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy shaolin trade preview 00005 Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy

 

5 Comments on Preview: The first nerdlebrity comics company returns with collected Shaolin Cowboy, last added: 10/21/2014
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6. NYCC ’14: Carol Tilley on how one man nearly killed reading comics

by Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson

Frederic Wertham’s name is akin to the devil incarnate in the comics world. Wertham was one of the ringleaders of the anti comics movement in the early 1950’s with his book Seduction of the Innocent. Carol Tilley, scholar, professor and librarian at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign who has written extensively about the subject gave a panel on Thursday morning at NYCC under the auspices of the American Library Association.

Dr. Fredric Wertham Reading Shock 300x212 NYCC 14: Carol Tilley on how one man nearly killed reading comics

Dr. Fredric Wertham Reading Shock

These are smart people and if you think you’re entitled to geek status, these people not only know their comics and love them but can also place them within the context of history and culture. And if your second thought is—oh librarians, and yawn…dull—far from it. Carol is not only smart and funny, uses lots of interesting visuals but her talks are also lively and thought provoking.

CarolTilleypanel 300x187 NYCC 14: Carol Tilley on how one man nearly killed reading comics

In looking at what we’ve lost Carol pointed out that in the early 1950’s about 95% of elementary age kids were reading comics. Teens and adults were also reading comics. From the moment comics arrived on the scene in the early 1930’s kids loved them and the titles proliferated. Once Superman started throwing villains and automobiles around the number of genres and titles became prolific. After World War II comics became more mature and there were 600 new titles in a decade. That’s a lot of comics.

Wertham’s campaign against comics was part of the death knell that led to the much smaller percentage of kids reading comics today. Comparing the smaller percentage of 7 million in sales today to over 1 billion in the early 1950’s tells the tale. That the prejudice against comics led to the reduced readership is important for everyone in the industry to understand.

Carol not only has done research in the usual avenues but has also researched specific teenagers from that period who responded to Dr. Wertham’s message of anti-comics. She gave some fascinating examples of kids crusading against racial stereotypes and a young woman who set up a lending library for comics during this period as well as the cogent arguments presented by teens who wrote to Dr. Wertham in response. Carol pointed out that social media is nothing new since comics have long supported social media through the fan letters printed in comic books.

CarolTilley 228x300 NYCC 14: Carol Tilley on how one man nearly killed reading comics

Carol Tilley: What We’ve Lost, Where we’re headed.

One of the major results of Carol’s scholarship and research is the fact that Wertham fabricated some of his statistics in his zeal to eradicate comics. In other words there was no necessity for the Comics Code, which was in existence until 2011.

From the very beginning of comic books librarians used the image of Superman urging kids to read. Today’s librarians celebrate comics because they encourage children to read. This is one of the basic foundations of the inception of early comics. Carol’s challenge to the librarians in the group was to point out that in the Wertham scare the ALA did nothing and to ask them what would they do if something similar to the Wertham campaign happened today? Who says comics are silly and shallow—not in this panel.

6 Comments on NYCC ’14: Carol Tilley on how one man nearly killed reading comics, last added: 10/21/2014
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7. iVerse to relaunch ComicsPLUS in November with uView, import and more

comics plus logo iVerse to relaunch ComicsPLUS in November with uView, import and more

We all know that Amazon’s acquisition of Comixology changed the digital comics landscape. While the benefits that Amazon can bring for Comixology are evident, and still developing, it wasn’t without some steps backwards. When Comixology stopped making in-app purchases due to Amazon/Apple tensions, many publishers saw a drop in digital comics sales.

As we’ve noted before, other players are stepping in to promote their services.

So it should come as no surprise that ComicsPLUS, the digital comics app from iVerse that has long been the second player in the digital comics world, is getting a big makeover starting in November. iVerse CEO and owner Michael Murphey gave us a peek at the new app at New York Comic Con, and it has several shiny new features, including a new uView enhanced reading experience; enhanced search functions; a streamlined interface that offers comics series not only in chronological order but also a “Storyline” view that offers all the books in a given storyline. And the new app will also offer the ability to import any drm-free PDf, ebook or iTunes file into the service where it can be streamlined via uView and be searchable under its name.

uView is the ComicsPLUS version of “Guided View” and I’m told it does not conflict with the patent that Disney holds on that version of “enhanced viewing experience,” to give the non trademarked name for panels that zoom and flow on a tap. It’s entirely user controlled, and based on the preview Murphey gave me, it’s dead simple to use – you basically pinch and zoom to get panels moving in your preferred way. I’m not sure now many comics readers will want to go through all their comics and “uView them up” – but publishers or creators can also use this system themselves. In other words, yet another job for the intern.

I asked Murphey if this would lead to an iVerse version of Comixology’s “Submit” program and he pointed out that “we don’t turn people away.” Although they occasionally reject material that has problematic content, anyone can sell their comics via ComicsPLUS, and uView will offer a way for creators to take control over the viewing experience.

The “Storyline” feature is perfect for people who follow mainstream comics events. The revamped iVerse interface offers a very streamlines view of issues in a series, with the newest one on top. You can also see all the issues that tie in to a storyline—in reading order. Like I said, this is very useful if you’re catching up on Final Crisis or any Big Two event from the last 15 years. It would also be useful for something like Love and Rockets which has a twisting storylines that even experts have a hard time following. (Note, Fantagraphics books aren’t available on iVerse, I’m just spitballing here.)

The search function is basically a smoother application, and the goal is eventually to have a more “Netflix-like” interface. So if you read Punisher, for instance, you could be offered “more comics featuring amoral hitmen.”

Finally, there’s the import function, which for a digital hoarder such as myself could be useful. Basically any legally purchased book you own in epub or pdf format (possibly others, my notes are a bit hazy here) can be imported into the ComicsPLUS app and indexed along with your purchases in the app.

iVerse is definitely putting some muscle into this update, which will roll out starting in November. Some of the features will go live in early 2015. Of course, there is still the matter of publishers: iVerse offers Dynamite, Valiant, Marvel trades and many other publishers. But not DC at this point. Valiant has the biggest parnership with iVerse thus far, having put their entire library on the platform.

Is there room for another digital comics platform? I’m told that Apple would be thrilled to have their piece of the digital comics pie again: Comixology was frequently the top grossing app for iPad, and it firmly put digital comics on Apple’s radar. It was Amazon’s dislike of giving Apple their 30% cut of in-app purchases that led to them being removed from Comixology’s app. (You can still buy comics directly on the CX website, however.) So yeah, there are some pennies to be made there. If digital comics become some kind of status symbol in a tug of war between Apple and Amazon, it means more money thrown into the pot.

I’m also told several publishers are considering being available on multiple platforms for obvious reasons. Amazon’s feuds, price wars and heavy handed tactics are all well and good when you want to buy cheap pants, but you don’t want to get caught on the wrong side of the equation.

iVerse has developed into a player in the library market so it will be interesting to see where this goes.

 

4 Comments on iVerse to relaunch ComicsPLUS in November with uView, import and more, last added: 10/21/2014
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8. Kibbles ‘n’ Bits 10/20/14: Gary Groth is a Stranger Genius

§ Congrats to Fantagraphics publisher Gary Groth for winning the Stranger’s Genius Award for Literature. Many would say Gary is strange, many a genius so it all cosmically came together. The Stranger is Seattle’s resident culture paper, and each year it gives out its Genius Awards. Groth prevailed over Ms. Marvel’s G. Willow Wilson and poet Shin Yu Pai.

§ Retailer Brian Hibbs is fretting over the standard attrition that Big Two events are subject to

As this market has shown again and again over the decades, consumer interest in “events” is a fickle thing. Sooner or later every publisher hits a few foul balls, or the public gets tired of oversaturation, or the story just doesn’t work, or whichever of the myriad of reasons… and the retailer is the one left holding the bag. It used to be that when, say, “Secret Wars II” turned out to be a pile of lox, we weren’t that over-extended with orders in the pipeline — 2-3 issues out, sure, but that’s very different from “order forty-six different comics and tie-ins before you’ve had any real amount of time to judge how the first one did.”

People have been saying events are done for as long as there have been events. This also applies to variant covers. Normally I would just say it was ever thus and move on, but this is a changing industry. Where are we going? Damned if I know.

§ Zainab Akhtar and Steve Morris both went to the Lakes Festival this weekend, and they both blogged about it. I understand The Lakes is held in a small picturesque town and the goal is to make it a sort of Angouleme type fest were comics take over the town. I sounds adorable, but read on. Steve had A Quick Nip Round The Lakes Comic Art Festival and noted the many comics themed displays around the town:

Having captured several strongpoints across the city centre, the Festival had not only won a battle of occupation – but one of propaganda. Everywhere you walk (not that there are MANY places to walk in Kendal, which is a teeny tiny nice little place) the shops had transformed themselves

 

Zainab had a more mixed time:

Foremostly, my whole experience was coloured by people’s reaction toward me. Kendal, and the Lake District by large, is a very white, very middle class region. We saw -I think- maybe 6 people of colour in the time we were there (yes, I counted), and the festival, being located in the town center, on a Saturday with bright, dry weather- was busy, as was the surrounding area. I got stared at a LOT, and if you’re visibly ethnic minority, you will instantly understand the hostile, open up-and-down hard stares of which I speak although some people prefer a eye-contact off. We went into a fish and chip shop for lunch at one point, and people turned their chairs around to simply gawp/glower. As far as I could tell, it seemed to be the headscarf and being overtly Muslim, because the few poc I did briefly pass didn’t seem to be under the same scrutiny, but I could easily be wrong about that. It was deeply unpleasant.

The comics part of the visit was welcoming and tolerant, she notes, but she doesn’t plan to go back either.

§ Grant Morrison was interviewed for Interview magazine and said many Grant Morrison like things.

he youzhi 650x573 Kibbles n Bits 10/20/14: Gary Groth is a Stranger Genius

§ R. Orion Martin has a look at another facet of the vast and unknowable world of comcis culture with a history of Lianhuanhua: China’s Pulp Comics. You probably didn’t know that China had a comics culture but of course, they do.

In 1985, there were 8.1 billion pulp comics (lianhuanhua) printed in mainland China. Most lianhuanhua were black and white paperbacks with a single illustration and a few lines of text on each page. They looked similar to the Big Little Books published in the United States from the 1930s to 1950s, but they were published in quantities that make the US comics market look tiny. Brian Hibbs analyzed the 2012 BookScan report and found that there were about 9.5 million comics sold in the US throughout the year. In the mid-80s, some lianhuanhua titles had single printing runs of more than 1 million copies. We usually don’t think of China as having a rich tradition of making comics, and discussions of Chinese comics focus on manhua, the Chinese comics that were inspired by Japanese manga. While it’s true that most of the comics being produced now are manhua, this was not the case for much of the 20th century. From their beginnings in the 1920s until their popularity bottomed out in the 1990s, lianhuanhua were some of the most widely read literature in the country.

§ Speaking of world comics, someone sent me this link, which is in Turkish, but Google Translate tells me it’s about the Turkish comics festival being held in December.

§ Okay cleaning up the last bits of New York Comic-Con here. You can not get a more overview-like overview of ay event than those written by Augie DeBlieck. Here’s a profile of Lance Fensterman. And a survey of expensive things you could have bought at the con. And here are photos from the Multiveristy/Image party. BTW in case yu didn’t figure it out, the parties a this year’s NYCC were as packed, vibrant and friend filled as other years. So much so that it’s taken me week to be able to sit upright again.

Mashable looked at some of the issues surrounding cosplay and harassment:

Partly, the issue is the characters themselves. Many of the revealing costumes are based off characters who were originally designed, at least in part, to be sexually provocative, for example, princesses, superheroes in spandex and sexualized anime school girls. As a result, many onlookers view them as the sexy characters they emulate rather than individuals wearing costumes, who should be treated with respect. But most real-life cosplayers are more concerned with the authenticity of the costume than sexual attention.

Hm. I’m not sure that de-sexualizing cosplay is any better than the reverse. It’s pretty obvious that many cosplayers (of all genders) are sexy and they know it. That doesn’t mean they should be touched, catcalled or made fun of, of course. I’m sure someone else has written way more wisely than myself about this, so I’ll leave it at that for now.

§ Matt D Wilson looks at how Southern Bastards captures its southern setting.

But, you might say, there are lots of crime comics out there. Heck, Jason Aaron, the writer of Southern Bastards, has penned a good many himself. Scalped and his Punisher run, to name a couple. Southern Bastards is something really special, though, because of the way Aaron and artist Jason Latour embrace its setting so deeply and wholeheartedly. Specifically, the book takes place in Craw County, Alabama, but it also serves as a deep dive into the culture of the South as a whole. There are aspects of the story that could only occur in a the setting of a small, Southern town. The creators, both Southerners themselves, do an amazing job of presenting a story that could be compelling to anyone but hit exactly the right notes for people who have lived in or near places like Craw County.

§ This gallery of Comics Journal covers brought back many memories.

TMNT JAMES JEAN 627x630 Kibbles n Bits 10/20/14: Gary Groth is a Stranger Genius

§ Finally, James Jean does the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and you can buy the toys. Nuff said.

 

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9. ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

While most comics fans started New York Comic Con on Thursday, the die-hard industry insiders and watchers began their “con crush” on Wednesday. ICV2.com once again hosted their annual conference at the Javits Center, choosing the theme: The New Comics Customer.

As is the tradition, each conference is inaugurated with an industry white paper. Milton Griepp, CEO of ICV2, collates a huge chunk of industry data and translates those numbers into words and pictures.

The following are my photos from the presentation, along with my commentary.
This website was a sponsor of the conference, and Heidi MacDonald was gracious to comp me a pass, although I’ve paid to attend all of the previous ICV2 conferences in the past.


 

2014 10 08 13.06.15 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

If you want to know what goes on in comics retailing, you should visit this site! ICV2.com! (Home of the Top 300!)

2014 10 08 13.07.04 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

OOOooohhhh…. How much? Who many? When? Which? Why? Classic questions that have bedeviled mankind ever since they started telling stories by painting comics on cave walls!

2014 10 08 13.08.47 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

Note that newsstand sales account for $25 Million. Also, that in comics shops, comic books outsell graphic novels 2:1 in dollars.

2014 10 08 13.10.32 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?
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Oooh… almost a constant slope on the current trend! Will we hit One. Million. Dollars. by 2015?  2014?

2014 10 08 13.13.44 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?
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Note that the decrease in manga brings the total down. But 2% fewer titles than last year? Hmm…

2014 10 08 13.18.23 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

What are the trends for the current year?

2014 10 08 13.20.57 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

2014 10 08 13.23.56 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

…and the invisible categories: libraries and book fairs?

2014 10 08 13.24.46 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

2014 10 08 13.25.09 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

(See that elephant over there? The one that says:
*the male:female ratio of readers skews female.
*women read more books than men
*80% of fiction is read by women)

2014 10 08 13.26.33 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

2014 10 08 13.36.09 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

(To which the elephant pipes up and mentions that most book clubs and book blogs are run by women.)

2014 10 08 13.37.50 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?

Books and merchandise.

2014 10 08 13.39.48 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?
2014 10 08 13.40.44 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?
2014 10 08 13.41.13 1000x750 ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?…and then time taken for a few questions.

8 Comments on ICV2 2014 Conference: White Paper: The Comics Customer: Who Is Reading All Those Comics?, last added: 10/20/2014
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10. NYCC’14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Okay…  I’m slowly getting back to “normal”.  I still have a huge backlog of posts to work on, here’s my con diary, mostly in picture form.

Photos were taken with my Samsung Galaxy S Epic 4G Touch 5MP camera, at high resolution.  Which means you see the crapiness in HD!

Tuesday

Yes, I started my “super week” on Tuesday, at Columbia University.  You can read and see what I did here.

After the library, many of us ventured across the street to Ollies.  Normally, I avoid any eatery with a B grade (21 points!  Temperature control, food contamination!), but ate here in the spirit of camaraderie.  (Misery loves company!)  The food was tasty, and the conversation lively.

Wednesday

I slept well, then headed to Javits.  The ICV2 conference was that afternoon, and I had to type up the Columbia report, as well as take pictures of setup.  I tried posting them via the WordPress app on my phone, but was stymied.

2014 10 08 17.42.47 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!A common site to New Yorkers.  If you see these, you’ll probably want to avoid the area for the next few ideas.
2014 10 08 11.56.32 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!Later, this will be the exit.  You’ll see Starfire in the background.
2014 10 08 11.57.08 1000x263 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 11.57.41 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
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2014 10 08 11.59.29 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 11.59.36 e1413662797778 771x1028 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 11.59.55 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.00.04 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.00.55 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!Have you bought your Batman Forever stamps?  (No… not THAT “Batman Forever“!)2014 10 08 12.01.31 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!“In my day, we called it “Nickelodeon”.  And when they signed off at 8 PM, we switched over and watched the scrambled Playboy Channel feed.”
2014 10 08 12.01.12 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!Gotham South.

2014 10 08 12.02.03 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.02.29 e1413662779389 771x1028 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!The line for the Empire Stage forms early…
2014 10 08 12.02.40 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.03.47 e1413662856103 771x1028 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.04.07 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!The view from the second floor, which is one level below Eleventh Avenue.
2014 10 08 12.05.02 e1413662874897 771x1028 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.05.26 e1413662978746 771x1028 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!The big picture.  Note the smaller number of panel rooms in 1A.
2014 10 08 12.07.02 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.07.26 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
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2014 10 08 12.07.43 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.08.00 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.09.00 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!God… I wonder if they got tired of people singing in the Bacon Pancake song?  2014 10 08 16.32.57 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!The final parking place.  There were more food trucks outside, but I was never that hungry, or that rich.
2014 10 08 12.09.38 e1413663358838 771x1028 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!
2014 10 08 12.12.01 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!2014 10 08 12.10.05 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!I guess they needed space for banners.
2014 10 08 12.10.51 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!Not a good omen for the convention…  If the Javits’ own TV monitors can’t find WiFi…
2014 10 08 16.31.35 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!Autographing in Hall 1B.
2014 10 08 16.30.55 1000x750 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!What I call the “Stockyards”.  This is the queue hall for events and the show floor every morning.

The afternoon was spent at the ICV2 conference.  But, at around 4PM, my stomach became unsettled, due to the bad Chinese I ate the night before.  I hoped to clear my stomach, but something had taken root.  I limped to the Abrams Comics Art reception, but had to give my regrets leaving early.

Finally, I awoke at 3 AM, and soon everything was okay.

Thursday

I got up early…  Disney was opening the show with the first panel on the Main Stage (Hall 1-D), featuring “Big Hero Six” and “Tomorrowland”.

The lines opened at 10:30 AM (not too late), and it was easy to navigate downstairs to the queue hall.  There we all waited in line for panels, and the room was packed by Noon, easily.  (My view was a bit blocked, standing a few yards from the head of the line.)

2014 10 09 11.31.24 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!At 12:30, staff began handing out the wristbands, and were adamant about people wearing them.  (I was trying to walk and band myself, and the staff made me stop and wristband.)  Then we congregated at the big side door leading directly into 1-D.  There was a small hiccup between letting the VIPs in before the hoi polloi, but it was all orderly.  No running, but I hustled, and got a good seat right next to the microphone.

2014 10 09 12.51.50 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

The crowd.  There was an empty seat between me and a reporter from the Wall Street Journal.  (We split the unclaimed swag.  He took the print, I took the bag with the promo and button.)

2014 10 09 12.41.25 e1413664456424 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!While we’re waiting, there was a DJ and comedian keeping us all entertained.  They both did a great job, but it was early… dunno what they were feeling on Sunday!
2014 10 09 12.40.28 e1413664561432 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

I made sure to sit right. next. to. the microphone.  I wanted to ask Brad Bird (director of Tomorrowland) what advice Edna Mode had for cosplayers.  Sadly (although it actually made for a better panel), there were no questions.

But right across the aisle… was the VIP section.  I was forward enough that most of those seated were Disney execs.  Guess who was sitting DIRECTLY across from me?  Nobody very important… just Marvel’s Chief Creative Officer.  “I don’t want to blow your cover,” I said, “but here’s my card.”

Once the festivities began, he was spotlighted along with one of the creators of Big Hero Six.  Disney showed a lot of clips, including an amazing chase scene!  They said Scott Adsit (Baymax) has made comics?  (He is an agent of SHIELD in Marvel Comics.)

(And yes, even the Disney execs are subject to the “no cell phone” policy.  One of the security agents was engaged in multiple conversations with one female exec.  It seemed to have been politely settled.)

Then they brought out the Tomorrowland cast.  Not much shown, as the aura of mystery was maintained.

The highlight, of course, was when George Clooney appeared.  This was his first ever Comic Con event, joking that he was blacklisted for his version of Batman.  He is EXTREMELY charming!  He even talked his bosses into screening a clip from the movie, where Casey Newton meets Frank Walker, and everything goes helter-skelter.
2014 10 09 12.41.00 e1413664578915 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Leave it to Disney to feature pin trading in the new movie!  (It is the inciting incident.)

Go see both.  Big Hero Six is great animation, and Tomorrowland will feature big scenes and big ideas.

2014 10 09 15.03.01 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

What’s this?  Well, I wandered the middle of the show floor (“Times Squre”) where the huge booths were located, hoping to avoid them the rest of the show.  This is a scale model of a Marvel’s new 4D virtual event which will travel across the country.  More information here.  By sheer coincidence, Mr. Quesada was just finishing up a presentation at the Marvel booth as I was taking this photo.2014 10 09 17.05.35 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!2014 10 09 17.05.48 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!2014 10 10 03.08.33 e1413667389957 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Remember that back-breaking DC book from a few years ago?  This is the Marvel version, penned by Roy Thomas!
2014 10 09 17.28.21 e1413664485425 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!I try to get at least one sketch comic per show.  Unlike most, I collect self-portraits of the cartoonists!  I love this series, and it’s always a pleasure meeting Louise Simonson!  Derek Charm then did the sketch, and Weezie immediately took a pic to spread far and wide!

2014 10 09 15.55.22 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

My co-worker is a hardcover Peanuts collector, and loves the holidays.  I had promised her I would stop by the Hallmark booth to see if there were any reveals of new Peanuts ornaments, but everything was already revealed.  While there, I got to chatting with one of Hallmark’s designers, Aden Chung, who was waiting for his event.  He created the itty bittys plushies for Hallmark, which are quite adorable!  His background was in animation, but worked previously on the greeting cards.

Yes, kids, you can be Batman!  Just be sure to schedule a family night in the bad part of town!  Too much trouble?  There’s a Batgirl version as well.  That one only requires your parents to get divorced.  (I kid.  I’ll be getting one for my niece.)2014 10 10 03.12.54 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Over at Image, Kyle Higgins was signing the Con exclusive hardcover, so I bought a copy.  I also bought the GSKFBS treasury, but didn’t realize that Eric Larsen was in artists alley, and I wasn’t going to lug it back the next day…

2014 10 10 02.56.01 e1413667413656 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!2014 10 10 03.08.57 e1413667581555 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Rebellion/2000 AD is always a pleasure to talk with, and they had this little-known hardcover on sale.  The U.S. edition will pub soon.

2014 10 10 02.56.36 e1413667674583 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Random House hosted numerous signings during the weekend, and I did not have too long to wait.  He wasn’t sketching, but did doodle a mushroom inside.

2014 10 10 02.59.54 e1413667764983 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!An actual print comic from Madefire.  They were quite hospitable, inviting me to sit down and sample the reading app, which is quite robust!  They also gave me a bottle of water, which was much appreciated!

 

2014 10 10 03.00.34 e1413667862728 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

 

Not an actual comic book, but quite clever!  I wonder if there’s a page that you can only access by cheating?

2014 10 10 03.08.26 e1413667965224 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

A bio-manga from Vertical!
2014 10 10 03.10.28 e1413668042719 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

And the scene outside as the show floor closed, and I began shambling home.

2014 10 09 19.21.23 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Friday

Got there bright and early, to cover the Marvel retailer panel.

After that, Abrams hosted a panel of their upcoming titles.  The panelists:

2014 10 10 11.13.47 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!They brought up each creator one-by-one to talk about their books.  All are amazing in different ways!  (Finnish heavy metal band with a bear on drums.  Simon and Kirby original art.  El Deafo.  The Kennedy Assassination.  Squirrel Scout cookies.)

The final teaser:

2014 10 10 11.57.56 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Yeah… they’re evil.

I then spent the rest of the day in Artist Alley, and got all but one aisle done!

A nice discovery, from Archaia.

2014 10 10 14.32.49 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Clever cosplay!  Jay P. Fosgitt signed and sketched himself, while Bodie Troll and Cholly keep himcompany.

2014 10 10 16.35.46 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Ah… the Fillbach Brothers were there!  Part of the ex-pat cornhusker comics confederation, they showed me a few sneak peaks of new stuff from First Comics!  It’s modern western, with crazy stuff happening every other page!  (See that cute little guy on the cover?  You won’t believe his origin!)  They’re loads of fun!
2014 10 10 17.22.38 e1413668912554 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

By sheer zen coincidence, I ran into them again on the way out, and after buying some medicine to combat con crud the next day, we went over to Beer Authority, where the staff were cosplaying in conjunction with Comic Con.  I had two glasses before making my escape.  If you enjoy beer, I recommend it; approximately twenty beers on tap.  That Brooklyn Defender burger sounds pretty interesting…

Saturday

The plan: surf the outside aisles of the show floor, checking out the retailers and smaller vendors.

For example, the National Cartoonist Society, which was offering a cool t-shirt featuring caricatures of Batman done by various cartoonists!

2014 10 11 13.21.50 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!The Concourse, at approximately 2 PM.  Yes, it was crowded, but I easily navigated this mass of humanity on the way to Artists Alley.  Same on the show floor… a few pauses, but not too difficult to move around.

2014 10 11 17.22.33 e1413670144626 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Bought some cool stuff, including original art.  Made a few notes for my lottery list.

 

And on the way out that night…2014 10 11 20.19.22 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!2014 10 11 20.19.42 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!2014 10 11 20.19.50 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!2014 10 11 20.20.38 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! Another panoramic:2014 10 11 20.21.50 300x39 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Sunday

Nothing on the schedule, except some autographs, and trying to see anything I didn’t see the other three days!

Interesting flavored cookies, with a comic book inside!

2014 10 12 08.32.37 e1413670059655 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

The exit.

2014 10 12 13.30.35 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! The view from the fourth floor cafe.2014 10 12 13.33.01 300x42 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! 2014 10 12 13.33.24 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! The view from the Galleria.  The VIP staff were gracious in allowing me to photograph from the suite.  They even asked me if I wanted in on the order of Chinese food they were organizing.  I demured.2014 10 12 13.39.34 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! 2014 10 12 13.39.42 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! 2014 10 12 13.39.59 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! 2014 10 12 13.40.35 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! 2014 10 12 13.41.13 e1413669968476 300x81 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! Exiting the Galleria, I liked how the entrance framed the naked torso of American Dad!  2014 10 12 13.42.46 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! 2014 10 12 13.44.57 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! 2014 10 12 13.46.04 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! A Marx keychain from Fred Van Lente!  2014 10 12 14.39.27 e1413669998148 225x300 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week! This was brilliant…  Neal Adams bought four booths, and built a table fort!  There was a small foyer right in front of him for people to line up, otherwise, everything else was on display!  2014 10 12 15.44.21 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!

Picked up stuff in artists alley (including two “Big Book” pieces from Gary Fields), then witnessed the Q&A panel.  I filed it from the FedEx Office shop, and by the time I left, Javits was as empty as it was on Wednesday.  I wasn’t able to get any good photos of the teardown, but came across this on the way to the subway:

2014 10 12 20.24.42 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!Those are all the Chevy’s that were on display.

In a bit of synchronicity, just a block away:

2014 10 12 20.27.02 300x225 NYCC14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!Five and a half days of Comics!  I ended up spending my paycheck at Javits, although everything cost less than $100.

It was an enjoyable show.  Not much stress (after the food poisoning), met lots of interesting people, and never felt wiped out at the end of the day.  (I even WALKED back to the subway each night!)  Next year: the TENTH show!

New York Comic Con is evolving nicely.  I’m still hoping for this…

1 Comments on NYCC’14: What Torsten Saw Last Week!, last added: 10/19/2014
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11. DC Offers A TV Guide For New Readers

DC TV DC Offers A TV Guide For New Readers

DC Entertainment now has four shows on TV (which might just be another milestone on the way to “peak geek”)!  To help new viewers “read all about it”, DC has published a free ebook listing core titles from their extensive backlist.  (Kinda like an “After Watchmen” guide.)

Prepare yourself for the upcoming DC Comics 2014 Fall TV schedule with these essential reads featuring The Flash, Green Arrow, John Constantine and the men and women of the Gotham City Police Department. This is a list of suggested further graphic novel reading for fans looking to learn more about these dynamite characters before they explode onto the TV screen!

You can download the free Nook version here.  Amazon has the Kindle edition here.  And the ComiXology edition.  Or perhaps you prefer iTunes.  And Google Play.

(It might be “guided view” and not work on some web browsers…  so I’m running the bibliography below.)
The titles are from the past thirty years of DC Comics, so some are pre-New 52, some are Vertigo.

— +++ —

The Flash

Flash: Rebirth
Geoff Johns
On Sale Date: May 3, 2011
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
168 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401230012, 1401230016

Summary: The epic story of Barry Allen’s return from the dead to reclaim his title as The Fastest Man Alive is collected in hardcover.
Geoff Johns and Ethan Van Sciver, the writer/artist team behind the blockbuster GREEN LANTERN: REBIRTH and THE SINESTRO CORPS WAR, create an explosive, jaw-dropping epic that reintroduces Barry Allen, the modern-age Flash. But how will Barry Allen find his place in the twenty-first century?

— +++ —
Flash Vol. 1: The Dastardly Death of the Rogues!
Geoff Johns
On Sale Date: January 17, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
228 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401231958, 1401231950

Contributor Bio: Geoff Johns, a Detroit native, brings a Hollywood sense of story-telling to comics. After working as an assistant to Richard Donner (director of LethalWeapon, Superman and many other great films), Geoff has brought his considerable writing talent to comics. For DC he has written Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E.S., The Flash, the enormously popular JSA with David Goyer, helped revitalize Hawkman with James Robinson and the comics event BLACKEST NIGHT.

Summary: The Flash races out of BLACKEST NIGHT and into the first graphic novel collection of his new monthly title written bycomics hottest writer Geoff Johns (BLACKEST NIGHT, GREEN LANTERN). The all-new adventures of The Fastest ManAlive start with “Case One: The Dastardly Death of the Rogues!” Barry Allen, The Flash, runs back to his life in Central City, but when one of the Rogues turns up murdered under mysterious circumstances, it’s up to The Fastest Man Alive to not onlysolve this bizarre crime, but protect those that are still targeted by the elusive killer. This storyline ties directly into BRIGHTEST DAY, the direct follow-up to the biggest comics event of 2009, BLACKEST NIGHT.
— +++ —
The Flash Vol. 2: The Road to Flashpoint
Geoff Johns
On Sale Date: October 2, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
128 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401234485, 1401234488

Contributor Bio:
Geoff Johns is an award-winning writer and one of the most popular contemporary comic book writers today. Johns is the author of The New York Times bestselling graphic novels Aquaman: The Trench, Blackest Night, Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War, Justice League: Origin, Superman: Brainiac and Batman: Earth One which hit #1 on the bestseller list. He is also known for transforming Green Lantern into one of the most critically and commercially successful franchises in comics.

Johns was born in Detroit and studied media arts, screenwriting, and film at Michigan State University. After moving to Los Angeles, he became an assistant to Richard Donner, director of Superman: The Movie. He and his mentor Donner later co-wrote Superman: Last Son featuring the return of General Zod.

Johns has written for various other media, including episodes of Smallville, Arrow and Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken, for which he was nominated along with his co-writers for an Emmy. He is the Chief Creative Officer of DC Entertainment and resides in Los Angeles, California.

Summary: The race towards FALSHPOINT continues in this Flash collection from comics’ hottest writer Geoff Johns and artist Francis Manapul!
Make way for Hot Pursuit – the latest speedster to come out of the Speed Force! He’s here to make sure no one breaks the speed limit – hero or villain! This hardcover collection of THE FLASH #8-12 leading up to the epic events of FLASHPOINT follows Barry Allen and the family of speedsters, as they try to discover Hot Pursuit’s identity and what he’s doing in Keystone City! This volume also features the origin of Barry Allen’s greatest foe, Professor Zoom! Eobard Thawne’s story is just beginning-and he intends to finish it with The Flash!
— +++ —
The Flash Vol. 1: Move Forward (The New 52)
Francis Manapul, Brian Buccellato
On Sale Date: August 20, 2013
$16.99 USD
168 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401235543, 1401235549

Contributor Bio:
Francis Manapul is the artist and co-writer of The Flash, which is part of DC Comics—The New 52. His previous work for DC Comics includes books such as Adventure Comics, Superman/Batman, and The Legion Of Super-Heroes. His work has been published in various publications from the likes of Aspen Comics, Editions Delcourt, Top Cow Productions, and Devils Due just to name a few. Manapul was a TV Presenter on SyFy’s Beast Legends, in which he and a team of scientists and adventurers traveled the globe in search of scientific data to create mythical beasts. Manapul was born in Manila, Philippines and currently calls Toronto, Canada his home.

Brian Buccellato started in comics as a colorist for the Marvel/DC crossover Punisher/Batman and went on to color for all major publishers including work on Uncanny X-Men, Superman, The Flash and many others. Brian began writing as part of The Story Company, collaborating on a number of screenplays. While working for Top Cow, he started his comics writing with The Darkness, before teaming with Francis Manapul to co-write The Flash for DC Comics. He also writes and illustrates the creator-owned title Foster.

Summary: Struck by a bolt of lightning and doused in chemicals, Central City Police scientist Barry Allen was transformed into the fastest man alive. Tapping into the energy field called The Speed Force, he applies a tenacious sense of justice to protect an serve the world as The Flash!
The Fastest Man Alive returns to his own monthly series as part of the DC Comics—The New 52 event with the writer/artist team of Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato. The Flash knows he can’t be everywhere at once, but he has seemingly met his match when he faces DC Comic’ hottest new Super Villain, Mob Rule, who really can be everywhere at once!
As Mob Rule wages a campaign of crime across Central City, including an electromagnetic blast that plunges the city into darkness, The Flash learns the the only way he can capture Mob Rule and save Central City is to learn how to make his brain function even faster than before—but as much as it helps him, it also comes with a steep price.
This volume collects issues 1-8 of the monthly series.
— +++ —
The Flash Vol. 2: Rogues Revolution (The New 52)

Francis Manapul, Brian Buccellato
On Sale Date: February 11, 2014
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
176 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401242732, 1401242731

Contributor Bio:
Francis Manapul is the artist and co-writer of THE FLASH, which is part of DC Comics-The New 52. His previous work for DC Comics includes books such as ADVENTURE COMICS, SUPERMAN/BATMAN, and THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES. His work has been published in various publications from the likes of Aspen Comics, Editions Delcourt, Top Cow Productions, and Devils Due just to name a few. Manapul was a TV Presenter on SyFy’s Beast Legends, in which he and a team of scientists and adventurers traveled the globe in search of scientific data to create mythical beasts. Manapul was born in Manila, Philippines and currently calls Toronto, Canada his home.

Summary: A New York Times Bestseller!

Struck by a bolt of lightning and doused in chemicals, Central City Police scientist Barry Allen was transformed into the fastest man alive. Tapping into the energy field called The Speed Force, he applies a tenacious sense of justice to protect an serve the world as The Flash!

The Flash’s Rogue’s Gallery are back—but they are more powerful than ever and they’re each looking to take down the Fastest Man Alive! Who is behind their sudden organization and why are they also after their former leader, Captain Cold? The Flash must think fast if he can outrun and survive their attack!

Collects issues #9-12, #0, and Annual #1
From the Hardcover edition.
— +++ —
The Flash Vol. 3: Gorilla Warfare (The New 52)
Francis Manapul, Brian Buccellato
On Sale Date: August 19, 2014
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
176 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401247126, 1401247121

Contributor Bio:
Francis Manapul is the artist and co-writer of THE FLASH, which is part of DC Comics-The New 52. His previous work for DC Comics includes books such as ADVENTURE COMICS, SUPERMAN/BATMAN, and THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES. His work has been published in various publications from the likes of Aspen Comics, Editions Delcourt, Top Cow Productions, and Devils Due just to name a few. Manapul was born in Manila, Philippines and currently calls Toronto, Canada his home.

Summary: In his hometown of Central City, The Flash—a.k.a. Barry Allen—is constantly deflecting the criminal schemes of his Rogue’s Gallery. Money hungry, cunning and powerful, these villains have the Scarlet Speedster running at a pace faster than even the world’s fastest man is used to.

But when Gorilla Grodd and his army descend on Central City, The Flash will have to contend with a threat he’s not used to: murderous, ruthless and without principle. With mammoth strength and mind-control powers, Grodd will not stop until he conquers the city with its heroes blood on his hands. Knowing full well he cannot defeat this new foe alone, The Flash will have to turn to his former enemies, the Rogues, if he wants to keep himself and Central City alive.

THE FLASH: GORILLA WARFARE is the third hardcover graphic novel from the best-selling creative team of Franics Manapul and Brian Buccellatto. Collects THE FLASH #13-19.
Collects issues #9-12, #0, and Annual #1.
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The Flash Vol. 4: Reverse (The New 52)
Francis Manapul, Brian Buccellato
On Sale Date: August 19, 2014
$24.99 USD, $28.99 CAD
176 pages
Hardcover
9781401247133, 140124713X

Contributor Bio:
Francis Manapul is the artist and co-writer of THE FLASH, which is part of DC Comics-The New 52. His previous work for DC Comics includes books such as ADVENTURE COMICS, SUPERMAN/BATMAN, and THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES. His work has been published in various publications from the likes of Aspen Comics, Editions Delcourt, Top Cow Productions, and Devils Due just to name a few. Manapul was born in Manila, Philippines and currently calls Toronto, Canada his home.

Francis Manapul is the artist and co-writer of THE FLASH, which is part of DC Comics-The New 52. His previous work for DC Comics includes books such as ADVENTURE COMICS, SUPERMAN/BATMAN, and THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES. His work has been published in various publications from the likes of Aspen Comics, Editions Delcourt, Top Cow Productions, and Devils Due just to name a few. Manapul was born in Manila, Philippines and currently calls Toronto, Canada his home.

Summary: The fourth volume of Brian Buccellato and Francis Manapul’s New 52 breakout hit – The Flash!

A mysterious and powerful Speed-Force killer has left a trail of bodies in his wake and only Barry has the power to stop him. But when the killer stays one step ahead of him, Barry finds himself face to face with the Teen Titans and Kid Flash for the first time. All this will lead to a confrontation with the Flash’s most deadly foe, The Reverse Flash!
Collects THE FLASH #20-25, and #23.3: REVERSE FLASH.
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Arrow

Arrow Vol. 1
Marc Guggenheim, Andrew Kreisberg, Mike Grell
On Sale Date: September 24, 2013
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
208 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Media Tie-In
9781401242992, 1401242995

Contributor Bio:
Marc Guggeinheim is award-winning multi-media writer, having scribed film, television, prose, video games and comic books. His television credits include Arrow (co-creator), Law & Order, Jack & Bobby, CSI: Miami and Brothers & Sisters. His best known comic book work includes AQUAMAN, SUPERMAN/BATMAN, THE FLASH, JSA, and Amazing Spider-Man, Young X-Men and Supreme Power.

Summary: Spinning off directly from the hit CW television series ARROW comes the Emerald Archerer in these digital-first adventures! Show creators Andrew Kreisberg and Marc Guggenheim team with some of the industry’s best artists, including Mike Grell (GREEN ARROW: THE LONGBOW HUNTERS), Phil Hester (GREEN ARROW: QUIVER) and others to fill in the gaps between episodes of one of TV’s hottest new series.

Collects Arrow #1-6 and #1 Special edition.
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Arrow Vol. 2
On Sale Date: May 20, 2014
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
192 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Media Tie-In
9781401246037, 1401246036

Contributor Bio:
Marc Guggeinheim is award-winning multi-media writer, having scribed film, television, prose, video games and comic books. His television credits include Arrow (co-creator), Law & Order, Jack & Bobby, CSI: Miami and Brothers & Sisters. His best known comic book work includes AQUAMAN, SUPERMAN/BATMAN, THE FLASH, JSA, and Amazing Spider-Man, Young X-Men and Supreme Power.

Summary: Spinning out of the hit CW television show, these digital-first chapters, written by show creators Marc Guggenheim and Andrew Kreisberg, fill in the gaps between the television show and the comics. This volume explores the mystery of what really happened to Deadshot after his dramatic showdown with Oliver during season one of Arrow!
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Green Arrow: Year One
Andy Diggle
On Sale Date: April 14, 2009
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
160 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401217433, 1401217435

Summary: Oliver Queen has been a faithful member of the Justice League of America and defended Star City with his trusty bown and an arsenal of deadly arrows for years-now thrill to the definitive tale of how he became Green Arrow!

Queen is a frivolous playboy with little care for anyone or anything-apparently even himself. But when he’s double-crossed and marooned on a jungle island, he finds that he does care about something: justice!
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Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunter
Mike Grell
On Sale Date: September 18, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
160 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401238629, 1401238629

Contributor Bio: Mike Grell is a comic book writer and artist, who’s career has spanned over 5 decades. Grell’s first work for DC Comics was in 1973 on SUPERBOY and LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES. He would go on to write or illustrate ACTION COMICS, BATMAN, THE FLASH, GREEN LANTERN/GREEN ARROW and WARLORD. He would also go on to create cult-favorite hero JON SABLE FREELANCE in the 80’s, as well the mini-series GREEN ARROW: THE LONGBOW HUNTERS.

Summary: A new edition of Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters collecting the 3-issue 1987 miniseries. Oliver Queen gives up his trick arrows and settles down in Seattle with Dinah Lance. But Ollie’s world collides with one of unspeakable violence involving the beautiful and mysterious archer known as Shado.
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Green Arrow: The Archer’s Quest
Brad Meltzer
On Sale Date: September 18, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
176 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401200442, 1401200443

Contributor Bio: Brad Meltzer is a name that is instantly synonymous with the term “creative visionary.” Raised in Brooklyn and Miami, this graduate of the University of Michigan and Columbia Law School had received 24 rejection letters for his first novel, The Tenth Justice, before it was published and became an instant New York Times bestseller. Since then, each of Meltzer’s subsequent novels – including The Inner Circle, Dead Even, The Zero Game and The Book of Lies – has matched that prestigious honor, with The Book of Fate earning particularly notable distinction by debuting at No. 1. The first comic book Brad ever read was Justice League of America #150 in 1978, when he was seven years old. Needless to say, it changed his life, and he has reciprocated in kind, authoring critically acclaimed DC comics such as GREEN ARROW: THE ARCHER’S QUEST and the wildly successful suspense thriller IDENTITY CRISIS. It is even more fitting that in 2006 he would go on to write the World’s Greatest Super-Heroes who so indelibly inspired his love for comics, and as a result garner himself an Eisner Award in the process.

Summary: By New York Times #1 Best-Selling novelist and writer of IDENTITY CRISIS Brad Meltzer, comes the critically acclaimed GREEN ARROW: ARCHER’S QUEST.

Oliver Queen is back as Green Arrow, and with his former sidekick Arsenal at his side, he’s setting off on an adventure that will test his courage and bring formerly hidden facets of the Green Arrow legend to light.
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Green Arrow Vol. 1: The Midas Touch (The New 52)
J.T. Krul
On Sale Date: June 5, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
144 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401234867, 1401234860

Contributor Bio:
J.T. Krul is an American comic book writer whose first comic work was at Marvel Comics, writing X-men Unlimited. He has since made quite a name for himself in the comic industry, writing the majority of books at Aspen MLT including Fathom. His recent projects include Captain Atom, Green Arrow, Teen Titans, Blackest Night: Titans, Titans, Justice League: Rise And Fall for DC Comics.

Summary: The Emerald Archer returns, relaunched for a new generation of readers!

The masked vigilante Green Arrow is used to looking for trouble, but now trouble’s come looking for him! Enter Rush and his gang of thrill-seeking trust fund babies, buying their super powers and treating the world as their playground. Along with their rotting man-monster Midas and the assassin Blood Rose, Rush plans to kill a super hero live on the Internet. Even with his cutting-edge weapons and tech from Q-Core, the odds are stacked against Green Arrow!

From Dan Jurgens (Superman), J.T. Krul (Captain Atom), Keith Giffen (O.M.A.C.) and George Perez (Worlds’ Finest), this latest chapter of Green Arrow is a can’t-miss event!
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Green Arrow Vol. 2: Triple Threat (The New 52)
Ann Nocenti
On Sale Date: January 29, 2013
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
160 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401238421, 1401238424

Contributor Bio: Harvey Montecillo Tolibao was born in June 1981 and raised in Malaybalay, Bukidnon, Philippines. At the age of 10, Harvey dreamed to become a comic book illustrator. He grew up collecting Pinoy Klasiks such as ALIWAN Horror Komiks, Tagalog Komiks, Romance, Kick fighter, Kidlat, Terminator, etc. He likes collecting foreign comics like Jim Lee’s X-Men, which also serves as one of his inspirations.

Summary: The stress of running a multi-billion dollar corporation and being the guardian of Star City has frayed Oliver Queen’s last nerve. When he encounters the genetically modified triplets known as “Skylark” during a mission, Queen, entranced by their beauty and the new techonology they give him, agrees to meet their “father” King Leer.

King Leer’s fortress, buried deep within a frozen moutainside, hides the true nature of his work, genetically modifying animals of all species – including humans – in order to take over the world. His work is funded by the gold mine he has seized and rules the native people through starvation by polluting the enviornment. Can Oliver Queen stop King Leer before he releases his creations
upon the world, or will he end up as one of Leer’s experiments?
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Green Arrow Vol. 3: Harrow (The New 52)
Ann Nocenti, Freddie Williams II
On Sale Date: September 17, 2013
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
144 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401244057, 140124405X

Contributor Bio:
Ann Nocenti is thrilled to be back in comics, writing CATWOMAN and KATANA for DC Comics. She wrote for Marvel Comics in the late-1980s, writing Daredevil, editing the X-Men, and creating the characters Longshot, Typhoid, Spiral, Blackheart and more. Nocenti teaches filmmaking at the Indigenous Film Circle in Norway, to Native Americans in Tulsa, and in Haiti for two years. Her journalism has appeared in Details, Utne, HEEB, Stop Smiling, PRINT, Filmmaker, Scenario, and more. She has written about Baluchistan (The Most Expensive Road Trip in the World, Best Travel Writing 2008). Her feature script Taking Chances was produced in 2009. Her work can be found at her website annienocenti.com.

Summary: Green Arrow is losing everything: his fortune, this company Q-Corps and maybe most importantly, his valuable arsenal. Even as Oliver Queen’s grip loosens and what’s left of his personal, professional and superhero lives, the hits keep on coming. The villainous Harrow threatens the Seattle waterfront, running guns into the city and threatening lives. As Ollie flails into a downward spiral, can he still protect his town?

Also included is the tie-in to HAWKMAN: WANTED. Green Arrow helps an uneasy ally in the Savage Hawkman, as he evades a chasing Thanagarian cops. But is Hawkman a framed hero? Or a villain?

Collects GREEN ARROW #0, 14-16, THE SAVAGE HAWKMAN #14 and JUSTICE LEAGUE #7./
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Green Arrow Vol. 4: The Kill Machine (The New 52)
Jeff Lemire, Andrea Sorrentino
On Sale Date: March 25, 2014
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
208 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401246907, 1401246907

Contributor Bio:
Award-winning Canadian cartoonist Jeff Lemire is the creator of the acclaimed monthly comic book series SWEET TOOTH published by DC/Vertigo and the award winning graphic novel Essex County published by Top Shelf.

Now one of DC Comics cornerstone writers, Jeff was prominent in the publisher’s recent “New 52” line-wide relaunch as the writer of ANIMAL MAN and FRANKENSTEIN: Agent of S.H.A.D.E. He has also written the monthly adventures of SUPERBOY and THE ATOM and is set to tackle JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK.

In 2008 Jeff won the Schuster Award for Best Canadian Cartoonist and The Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent. He also won the American Library Association’s prestigious Alex Award, recognizing books for adults with specific teen appeal. He has also been nominated for 5 Eisner awards and 5 Harvey Awards.

In 2010 Essex County was named as one of the five Essential Canadian Novels of the Decade. He currently lives and works in Toronto with his wife and son.

Summary: Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino begin their ground-breaking saga in the fourth volume of Green Arrow!

A mysterious villian called Komodo knows Oliver’s secrets and uses them to rob Oliver of all his wealth and his company. Now on the run from this seemingly unstoppable force, Oliver finds himself in a mystery involving the island where he first became Green Arrow and his father! Everything will change for the Emerald Archer in this new beginning for the character.

This volume collects Green Arrow #17-24 and 23.1
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Suicide Squad?  (Ah… part of “Arrow”.)  (And soon to be a Major Motion Picture)

Suicide Squad Vol. 1: Kicked in the Teeth (The New 52)
Adam Glass, Federico Dallocchio
On Sale Date: July 10, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
160 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401235444, 1401235441

Contributor Bio:
ADAM GLASS is a writer and television producer, whose credits include co-creating, writing and producing the hit CW show Supernatural. Other writing credits include Cold Case, Blue Collar TV, and The Cleaner. He currently is writing Suicide Squad for DC Comics, and previously worked on the Flashpoint: Legion Of Doom mini-series for DC Comics.

Summary: A New York Times Bestseller!

As a part of the acclaimed DC Comics-The New 52 event of September 2011, writer and co-creator of the CW show Supernatural Adam Glass rolls out an all-new team of death-row super villains recruited by the government to take on missions so dangerous-they’re sheer suicide!

The story begins with the Suicide Squad defeated, imprisoned and being interrogated about their newest mission. Harley Quinn, King Shark, Deadshot and company must make it out alive without revealing who’s pulling the strings behind their illegal operations. Who will be the first to crack under the pressure? More importantly will they make it all out alive?
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Birds of Prey Vol. 1: Trouble in Mind (The New 52)
Duane Swierczynski
On Sale Date: September 18, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
160 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401236991, 1401236995

Contributor Bio:
Duane Swiercynzski is the author of several novels including the Edgar-nominated and Anthony Award-winning “Expiration Date,” as well as “Fun & Games,” out now from Mulholland Books. He also writes comics, and thrillers with CSI creator Anthony E. Zuiker.

Summary: One is wanted for a murder she didn’t commit. The other is on the run because she knows too much. They are Dinah Laurel Lance and Ev Crawford – a.k.a. Black Canary and Starling – and joining them are the villainous Poison Ivy and the heroic Batgirl and together, as Gotham City’s covert ops team, they’re taking down the villains other heroes can’t touch. They are the Birds of Prey.
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Deathstroke Vol. 1: Legacy (The New 52)
Kyle Higgins, Simon Bisley
On Sale Date: August 14, 2012
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
192 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401234812, 140123481X

Contributor Bio:
Kyle Higgins is a New York Times Best Selling writer whose work includes BATMAN: GATES OF GOTHAM, Supreme Power, and DEATHSTROKE. After spending two years at the University of Iowa, Kyle transferred to Chapman University where he co-wrote and directed a superhero noir titled The League, about the 1960’s superhero labor union of Chicago. The film opened doors at Marvel Comics, where Kyle co-wrote his first two books with Alec Siegel (Captain America Theater Of War: Prisoners Of Duty, and Avengers Origins: The Vision). Kyle is also a co-writer of The Nightrunner (with David Hine), whose story was featured on The Daily Show with John Stewart. At present, Kyle is helming NIGHTWING as part of DC’s The New 52.

Summary: As a part of the acclaimed DC Comics-The New 52 event of September 2011, Slade Wilson once ranked as the world’s greatest mercenary. But when his reputation starts to slip, and when a mysterious briefcase enters the equation, the man known as Deathstroke decides to carve a bloody, gory swatch across the DCU in a quest to show the world what exactly makes him the best.
This volume collect issues 1-6 of Deathstroke, part of the DC Comics-The New 52 event.
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Gotham

Gotham Central Book 1: In the Line of Duty
Greg Rucka, Ed Brubaker, Michael Lark
On Sale Date: March 15, 2011
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
240 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401220372, 1401220371

Summary: Gotham City: a town teeming with corrupt cops, ruthless crime lords, petty thieves … and just a small handful that would oppose them. Grizzled veteran Harvey Bullock, Captain Maggie Sawyer, detective Renee Montoya and the GCPD are the law force that stands between order and complete anarchy. Gotham’s Finest work around the clock to not only keep the world’s most psychotic criminals off the street… but also cleaning up the mess left behind by Batman’s one-man war on crime.

Written by critically acclaimed authors Ed Brubaker (Captain America) and Greg Rucka (52, DETECTIVE COMICS), this Eisner Award-winning series follows the detectives of Gotham City’s Special Crimes Unit as they navigate the against the city’s greatest villains — in the shadow of Batman himself. Collects issues #1-10.
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Gotham Central Book 2: Jokers and Madmen
Greg Rucka
On Sale Date: July 12, 2011
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
288 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401225438, 1401225438

Summary: Witness the gritty side of the Gotham City Police Department from their perspective, as they take on psychotic criminals like The Joker and grudgingly look to The Dark Knight for help.
This volume collects two cases of the Gotham Special Crimes Unit. First, The Joker terrorizes the city at Christmastime when he begins randomly executing people with a rifle, and no one from the Mayor on down is safe. A second story focuses on an old case and unfinished business for disgraced detective Harvey Bullock.
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Gotham Central Book 3: On the Freak Beat
Greg Rucka
On Sale Date: October 25, 2011
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
224 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401232320, 1401232329
Contributor Bio: Ed Brubaker is one of the most acclaimed writers currently working in comics. After working at DC Comics for many years on titles such as GOTHAM CENTRAL, BATMAN, SLEEPER, and CATWOMAN, Brubaker moved to Marvel, where he took over Uncanny X-Men and Daredevil, and jump-started Captain America into its most exciting ongoing storyline in years. Brubaker’s work also includes The Immortal Iron Fist (with co-writer Matt Fraction), and the creator-owned Criminal, drawn and co-created by Sean Phillips. Brubaker has won the Eisner Award for Best Writer the past two years in a row, and Criminal won for Best New Series in 2007.

Summary: This volume collects two separate cases of the Gotham Special Crimes Unit. Detective Renee Montoya investigates the disappearance of important evidence amid a gang war and travels to Keystone City in an attempt to unveil the truth about Officer Kelly’s strange mutation. Plus, the dead body of Robin, the Boy Wonder is found on the streets. Now the detectives of Gotham Central must try to solve the mystery of his death while dealing with his former associates, Batman and the Teen Titans!
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Gotham Central Book 4: Corrigan
Greg Rucka
On Sale Date: May 1, 2012
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
224 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401231941, 1401231942

Contributor Bio: Greg Rucka is a thriller novelist who became one of the premier writers for DC Comics in the last decade.

His work on Batman brought fresh attention to the character and the inhabitants of Gotham City. Additionally, he won the Eisner award for best story with Gotham Central’s “Half a Life.” His other DC credits include Adventures of Superman, Checkmate, Detective Comics, O.M.A.C. Project, Supergirl, and Wonder Woman. He was one of the co-writers on DC’s first weekly series, 52. His Oni Press graphic novel, Whiteout, was released as a feature film in 2009. His recent series of Batwoman stories in DETECTIVE COMICS garnered widespread acclaim, and is collected this summer in
BATWOMAN: ELEGY.

Summary: Witness the gritty side of the Gotham City Police Department from their perspective, as teens dressed as Robin the Boy Wonder start turning up dead.
In this final hardcover collection of GOTHAM CENTRAL, the dead body of Robin the Boy Wonder is found on the streets. Now the detectives of Gotham Central must try to solve the mystery of his death while dealing with his associates, Batman and the Teen Titans.

From the Hardcover edition.
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Batman: Year One
Frank Miller, David Mazzucchelli
On Sale Date: January 10, 2007
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
144 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401207526, 1401207529

Summary: A New York Times Best Seller!

A deluxe trade paperback edition of one of the most important and critically acclaimed Batman adventures ever, written by Frank Miller, author of THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS!

In addition to telling the entire dramatic story of Batman’s first year fighting crime, this collection includes reproductions of original pencils, promotional art, script pages, unseen David Mazzucchelli Batman art and more.
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Batman: Earth One
Geoff Johns, Gary Frank
On Sale Date: August 19, 2014
$12.99 USD, $15.99 CAD
144 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401232092, 1401232094

Contributor Bio:
Geoff Johns is an award-winning writer and one of the most popular contemporary comic book writers today. Johns is the author of The New York Times bestselling graphic novels Aquaman: The Trench, Blackest Night, Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War, Justice League: Origin, Superman: Brainiac and Batman: Earth One which hit #1 on the bestseller list. He is also known for transforming Green Lantern into one of the most critically and commercially successful franchises in comics.

Johns was born in Detroit and studied media arts, screenwriting, and film at Michigan State University. After moving to Los Angeles, he became an assistant to Richard Donner, director of Superman: The Movie. He and his mentor Donner later co-wrote Superman: Last Son featuring the return of General Zod.

Johns has written for various other media, including episodes of Smallville, Arrow and Adult Swim’s Robot Chicken, for which he was nominated along with his co-writers for an Emmy. He is the Chief Creative Officer of DC Entertainment and resides in Los Angeles, California.

Gary Frank, a native of Bristol, England, began his comics career working on various titles for Marvel UK before entering the American comics scene as the penciller on Marvel’s Incredible Hulk. Frank then
came to DC Comics where he was the original artist on BIRDS OF PREY and pencilled the adventures of SUPERGIRL. He has also worked on WildStorm’s GEN 13 as well as his creator-owned series Kin. Frank,
along with writer Geoff Johns, has worked on the bestselling titles SUPERMAN: BRAINIAC, SUPERMAN AND THE LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES and the New York Times #1 bestseller, BATMAN: EARTH ONE.

From the Hardcover edition.

Summary: A #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Batman is not a hero.

He is just a man.

Fallible, vulnerable, and angry.

In a Gotham City where friend and foe are indistinguishable, Bruce Wayne’s path toward becoming the Dark Knight is riddled with more obstacles than ever before. Focused on punishing his parents’ true killers, and the corrupt police that allowed them to go free, Bruce Wayne’s thirst for vengeance fuels his mad crusade and no one, not even Alfred, can stop him.

In the tradition of the #1 New York Times bestselling Superman: Earth One, writer Geoff Johns and artist Gary Frank re-imagine a new mythology for the Dark Knight, where the familiar is no longer the expected in this long-awaited original graphic novel from DC Comics.
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Batman: Gordon of Gotham
Dennis O’Neil, Chuck Dixon, Klaus Janson
On Sale Date: September 30, 2014
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
288 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401251741, 1401251749

Contributor Bio:
Dennis O’Neil began his career as a comic-book writer in 1965 at Charlton, where then-editor Dick Giordano assigned him to several features. When Giordano moved to DC, O’Neil soon followed. At DC, O’Neil scripted several series for Giordano and Julius Schwartz, quickly becoming one of the most respected writers in comics. O’Neil earned a reputation for being able to “revamp” such characters as Superman, Green Lantern, Captain Marvel—and Batman, whom O’Neil (with the help of Neal Adams and Giordano) brought back to his roots as a dark, mysterious, gothic avenger. Besides being the most important Batman writer of the 1970s, O’Neil served as an editor at both Marvel and DC. After a long tenure as Group Editor of the Batman line of titles, he retired to write full-time.

Summary: Gotham City Police Commissioner Jim Gordon stars in this new collection of crime stories from the 1990s that stars the colorful, determined cops of Batman’s home town.

Collects BATMAN: GORDON OF GOTHAM #1-4, BATMAN: GCPD #1-4 and BATMAN: GORDON’S LAW #1-4.
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Batman No Man’s Land Vol. 1 (New Edition)
On Sale Date: December 13, 2011
$29.99 USD, $35.00 CAD
544 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401232283, 1401232280

Summary: After suffering a cataclysmic earthquake, the U.S. government has deemed Gotham City as uninhabitable and ordered all citizens to leave. It is now months later and those that have refused to vacate “No Man’s Land” live amidst a citywide turf war in which the strongest prey on the weak. As gangs terrorize the ravaged populace, the Scarecrow uses a church relief project as a real life lab to test his experiments in fear. But with the return of the vigilante, Batman, and the appearance of an enigmatic new Batgirl, justice returns to Gotham.
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Batman Vol. 4: Zero Year-Secret City (The New 52)
Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo
On Sale Date: May 13, 2014
$24.99 USD, $28.99 CAD
176 pages
Hardcover
9781401245085, 1401245080

Contributor Bio:
Scott Snyder is the bestselling and award-winning writer of Batman, Superman: Unchained, American Vampire and Swamp Thing as well as the short story collection Voodoo Heart. He teaches writing at Sarah Lawrence College, NYU and Columbia University. He lives on Long Island with his wife, Jeanie, and his sons Jack and Emmett. He is a dedicated and un-ironic fan of Elvis Presley.

Summary: In this first volume of the critically acclaimed ZERO YEAR storyline, the #1 New York Times bestselling creative team of Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo present an astonishing new vision of the Dark Knight’s origin—and his first encounters with the Riddler, the Red Hood, and others!

Before the era of superheroes began—before the Batman spread his wings to protect the innocent and punish evil—Gotham City’s prodigal son, Bruce Wayne, had been missing for years. But this was exactly the cover of darkness Bruce needed. Patrolling Gotham’s streets, in a series of disguises, he began a career as faceless vigilante.

Collects BATMAN issues #21-#24.
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Batman: The Long Halloween
Jeph Loeb, Tim Sale
On Sale Date: October 11, 2011
$24.99 USD, $28.99 CAD
384 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401232597, 1401232590

Contributor Bio:
Jeph Loeb is an Emmy award nominated and Eisner award winning writer/producer living in Los Angeles. In television, his many credits include Smallville, Lost and Heroes and in film, Teen Wolf and Commando. In comics, he is best known for his work with the supremely talented artist and partner-in-crime TIM SALE on BATMAN: THE LONG HALLOWEEN, SUPERMAN FOR ALL SEASONS,CATWOMAN: WHEN IN ROME for DC as well as Daredevil Yellow, Spider-Man Blue and Hulk Gray for Marvel.

Tim Sale is not only the artist for the numerous collaborations with Jeph Loeb listed above, but has also worked on DEATHBLOW, BATMAN: LEGENDS OF THE DARK KNIGHT, Grendel, Wolverine/Gambit: Victims, Billi 99, Amazon, and various other projects. He had the distinct honor of being the first creator chosen for the artist spotlight series SOLO.

Summary: Taking place during Batman’s early days of crime fighting, this new edition of the classic mystery tells the story of a mysterious killer who murders his prey only on holidays. Working with District Attorney Harvey Dent and Lieutenant James Gordon, Batman races against the calendar as he tries to discover who Holiday is before he claims his next victim each month. A mystery that has the reader continually guessing the identity of the killer, this story also ties into the events that transform Harvey Dent into Batman’s deadly enemy, Two-Face.
This edition includes original 13-issue series as well as four additional story pages cut from the original series, which are presented fully colored and restored to their place in the story. Also featured are sketches and an introduction by the director and writer of The Dark Knight Rises, Christopher Nolan and David Goyer.
— +++ —
Batman: Dark Victory (new edition)
Jeph Loeb, Tim Sale
On Sale Date: February 18, 2014
$24.99 USD, $28.99 CAD
400 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401244019, 1401244017

Contributor Bio:
Jeph Loeb is an Emmy award nominated and Eisner award winning writer/producer living in Los Angeles. In television, his many credits include Smallville, Lost and Heroes and in film, Teen Wolf and Commando. In comics, he is best known for his work with the supremely talented artist and partner-in-crime TIM SALE on BATMAN: THE LONG HALLOWEEN, SUPERMAN FOR ALL SEASONS,CATWOMAN: WHEN IN ROME for DC as well as Daredevil Yellow, Spider-Man Blue and Hulk Gray for Marvel.

Tim Sale is not only the artist for the numerous collaborations with Jeph Loeb listed above, but has also worked on DEATHBLOW, BATMAN: LEGENDS OF THE DARK KNIGHT, Grendel, Wolverine/Gambit: Victims, Billi 99, Amazon, and various other projects. He had the distinct honor of being the first creator chosen for the artist spotlight series SOLO.

Summary: Collecting BATMAN: DARK VICTORY #0-13, this epic continues the story of THE LONG HALLOWEEN. It is early in Batman’s crimefighting career, when James Gordon, Harvey Dent, and the vigilante himself were all just beginning their roles as Gotham’s protectors.

Once a town controlled by organized crime, Gotham City suddenly finds itself being run by lawless freaks, such as Poison Ivy, Mr. Freeze, and the Joker. Witnessing his city’s dark evolution, the Dark Knight completes his transformation into the city’s greatest defender. He faces multiple threats, including the seeming return of a serial killer called Holiday. Batman’s previous investigation of Holiday’s killings revealed that more than one person was responsible for the murders. So the question remains: who is committing Holiday’s crimes this time? And how many will die before Batman learns the truth?
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Constantine

John Constantine, Hellblazer Vol. 1: Original Sins
Jamie Delano, John Ridgway
On Sale Date: March 8, 2011
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
304 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401230067, 1401230067

Summary: The very first Hellblazer collection ORIGINAL SINS is available in a new edition that includes John Constantine’s appearances in SWAMP THING. This is the first of a series of new HELLBLAZER editions starring Vertigo’s longest running antihero, John Constantine, England’s chain-smoking, low-rent magus.
This first collection is a loosely connected series of tales of John’s early years where Constantine was at his best and at his worst, all at the same time.
— +++ —
John Constantine, Hellblazer Vol. 2: The Devil You Know (New Edition)
Jaime Delano
On Sale Date: January 3, 2012
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
264 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401233020, 1401233023

Contributor Bio: Born in 1954, Jamie Delano has made a diverse, cross-genre contribution to the comic book medium, scripting—over some 25 years—both original works (World Without End, Tainted, Ghostdancing, Hell Eternal, Cruel and Unusual, Territory, Outlaw Nation) and publisher-owned properties (Captain Britain, Dr. Who, Night Raven, Hellblazer, Animal Man, Batman, Shadowman). He is currently practicing for retirement, living in semi-rural England with his partner, Sue.

Summary: These are the stories that set the tone for John Constantine’s mystic misadventures.
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John Constantine, Hellblazer Vol. 3: The Fear Machine (New Edition)
Jamie Delano
On Sale Date: June 26, 2012
$24.99 USD, $28.99 CAD
240 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401235192, 1401235190

Contributor Bio:
Born in 1954, Jamie Delano has made a diverse, cross-genre contribution to the comic book medium, scripting-over some 25 years-both original works (World Without End, Tainted, Ghostdancing, Hell Eternal, Cruel and Unusual, Territory, Outlaw Nation) and publisher-owned properties (Captain Britain, Dr. Who, Night Raven, Hellblazer, Animal Man, Batman, Shadowman). He is currently practicing for retirement, living in semi-rural England with his partner, Sue.

Summary: In THE FEAR MACHINE, John Constantine looks for a way to reconnect to humanity-but how can such a man ever find inner peace? Constantine finds himself encamped with a new-age pagan group that’s tapping into their own psychic abilities-but a defense contractor is out to exploit their powers. Is the company’s aim just political, or is it something much more sinister?
This volume collects issues 14-22 of the original series.
— +++ —
John Constantine, Hellblazer Vol. 4: The Family Man
Jamie Delano
On Sale Date: November 20, 2012
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
288 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401236908, 1401236901

Contributor Bio:
Born in 1954, Jamie Delano has made a diverse, cross-genre contribution to the comic book medium, scripting-over some 25 years-both original works (World Without End, Tainted, Ghostdancing, Hell Eternal, Cruel and Unusual, Territory, Outlaw Nation) and publisher-owned properties (Captain Britain, Dr. Who, Night Raven, Hellblazer, Animal Man, Batman, Shadowman). He is currently practicing for retirement, living in semi-rural England with his partner, Sue.

Summary: Collected for the first time in chronological order and featuring stories by fan-favorite writer Grant Morrison (BATMAN INC, FINAL CRISIS) and the legendary Neil Gaiman (SANDMAN, AMERICAN GODS), FAMILY MAN continues the arcane adventures of Vertigo’s chain-smoking magician John Constantine. In this volume, Constantine attempts a vacation after recent events, but as usual, things don’t go as planned. Plus, Constantine must uncover the mystery of the murderous Family Man.
— +++ —
John Constantine: Hellblazer Vol. 5: Dangerous Habits (New Edition)
Jamie Delano, Garth Ennis
On Sale Date: May 14, 2013
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
352 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401238025, 1401238025
Contributor Bio:
Born in 1954, Jamie Delano has made a diverse, cross-genre contribution to the comic book medium, scripting-over some 25 years-both original works (World Without End, Tainted, Ghostdancing, Hell Eternal, Cruel and Unusual, Territory, Outlaw Nation) and publisher-owned properties (Captain Britain, Dr. Who, Night Raven, Hellblazer, Animal Man, Batman, Shadowman). He is currently practicing for retirement, living in semi-rural England with his partner, Sue.

Irish-born writer Garth Ennis is the acclaimed author of the PREACHER graphic novel series, and also has written numerous JOHN CONSTANTINE: HELLBLAZER graphic novels, as well as THE AUTHORITY, THE BOYS, WAR STORIES, PRIDE AND JOY and other titles.

Summary: This new HELLBLAZER collection features several tales never before collected, including a look at John Constantine’s rough and tumble childhood and the beginnings of his unique skills. Then, in some of the earliest stories from PREACHER writer Garth Ennis, John Constantine is dying. As a sorcerer literally haunted by the demons of his past, John is no stranger to mystic bedevilment or supernatural horror. But it’s his chain smoking that ultimately brings death to Constantine’s front door. John Constantine has lung cancer. Though condemned to hell, Constantine continues to laugh in the face of this all-too-serious world.
— +++ —
John Constantine, Hellblazer Vol. 6: Bloodlines
Garth Ennis, William Simpson
On Sale Date: September 3, 2013
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
400 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401240431, 1401240437

Contributor Bio:
Irish-born writer Garth Ennis is the acclaimed author of the PREACHER graphic novel series, and also has written numerous JOHN CONSTANTINE: HELLBLAZER graphic novels, as well as THE AUTHORITY, THE BOYS, WAR STORIES, PRIDE AND JOY and other titles.

Summary: It’s not often that John Constantine, the world’s greatest magician, has been able to be content. Years in the making, his occult knowledge and shrewd judgment are hard-won and paid for in blood-his own, his friends’, and that of innocent caught up in the never-ending arms race of would-be sorcerers chasing power. But after saving the world a few times and beating both the Devil and lung cancer, Constantine is finally starting to feel ahead of the game. However, between investigations of a grisly serial murderer and strategies against the Lord of Hell, John has no time to rest.

Collects issues 47-50, 52-55 and 59-61 of the signature Vertigo series by PREACHER creator Garth Ennis.
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John Constantine, Hellblazer Vol. 7: Tainted Love
Garth Ennis, Steve Dillon
On Sale Date: January 7, 2014
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
320 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401243036, 1401243037

Contributor Bio:
Garth Ennis has been writing comics for twenty years, initially for British titles like 2000 AD and Crisis, then for various American publishers. As well as PREACHER, his credits include HELLBLAZER, HITMAN, WAR STORY, ADVENTURES IN THE RIFLE BRIGADE, KEV, BATTLER BRITTON, The Boys, Battlefields, Dan Dare, 303, The Chronicles of Wormwood, Crossed, Streets of Glory, Dicks, The Punisher, Fury and The Pro. Originally hailing from Belfast, Northern Ireland, he now resides in New York City with his wife, Ruth.

Summary: John Constatine celebrates his fortieth birthday alongside his friends and loved ones, including Swamp Thing and Zatanna, and the love of his life, Kit. However, things never burn bright too long for John Constantine, and he soons finds himself at his lowest point ever. Drunk and homeless, John must pull himself together if he is going to survive against the King of the Vampires, who comes looking for his blood.

Collects HELLBLAZER #62-71, HELLBLAZER SPECIAL #1, and VERTIGO JAM #1.
— +++ —
John Constantine, Hellblazer Vol. 8: Rake at the Gates of Hell
Garth Ennis, Steve Dillon
On Sale Date: June 10, 2014
$19.99 USD, $23.99 CAD
384 pages
Trade Paperback
Comics & Graphic Novels / Horror
9781401247492, 1401247490
Contributor Bio:
Irish-born writer Garth Ennis is the acclaimed author of the PREACHER graphic novel series, and also has written numerous JOHN CONSTANTINE: HELLBLAZER graphic novels, as well as THE AUTHORITY, THE BOYS, WAR STORIES, PRIDE AND JOY and other titles.

Summary: John Constantine heads towards a final showdown with a revenge-crazed Satan during a raging race riot, and in addition to desperately trying to save his dwindling number of living friends, Constantine also has one final reunion with his lost love Kit.

This re-cut volume features Garth Ennis’ and Steve Dillon’s final JOHN CONSTANTINE, HELLBLAZER arc, collecting issues #78-83 as well as the special one-shot HEARTLAND.
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Constantine Vol. 1: The Spark and the Flame (The New 52)
Jeff Lemire, Renato Guedes, Ray Fawkes
On Sale Date: February 18, 2014
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
144 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401243234, 1401243231

Contributor Bio:
Award-winning Canadian cartoonist Jeff Lemire is the creator of the acclaimed monthly comic book series SWEET TOOTH published by DC/Vertigo and the award winning graphic novel ESSEX COUNTY published by Top Shelf. He also writes ANIMAL MAN, FRANKENSTEIN AGENT OF S.H.A.D.E. and SUPERBOY for DC Comics.

In 2008 Jeff won the Schuster Award for Best Canadian Cartoonist, and The Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent. He also won the American Library Association’s prestigious Alex Award, recognizing books for adults with specific teen appeal. In 2010 Essex County was named as one of the five Essential Canadian Novels of the Decade!

Recently named one of Wizard magazines 25 “rising stars”, Jeff is also hard at work on a new graphic novel for Top Shelf called THE UNDERWATER WELDER, due in 2012. He currently lives and works in Toronto with his wife and son.

Summary: The star of JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK and HELLBLAZER—the longest-running Vertigo series—is unleashed in his own DCU title! Liar, cheater, manipulator…John Constantine is all of these, and yet he uses these skills and more to protect the world from the darkest corners of the DC Universe.

Collects Constantine #1-6
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Constantine Vol. 2: Blight (The New 52)
Ray Fawkes, Renato Guedes
On Sale Date: August 12, 2014
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
144 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401247478, 1401247474

Contributor Bio:
Ray Fawkes is a Toronto-based fine artist and writer of comics, graphic novels, prose fiction, and games. Ray’s work ranges in styles from introspective, dreamscape narrative to bombastic slapstick. He is an Eisner, Harvey, and three-time Shuster Award nominee, and a YALSA award winner for “Possessions Book One: Unclean Getaway”. His recent book, “One Soul”, debuted in July 2011 to critical acclaim, including a starred booklist review, and was nominated for the 2012 Eisner award and 2012 Harvey award.

Summary: The star of JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK and HELLBLAZER—the longest-running Vertigo series—John Constantine has suffered a major loss at the hands of a former protégé. With his vault of mystical weapons now in the hands of his greatest enemies, John Constantine must battle with Sargon and the Cult of the Cold Flame with all he has left—his wits!
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Justice League Dark Vol. 1: In the Dark (The New 52)
Peter Milligan, Mikel Janin, Ryan Sook
On Sale Date: October 16, 2012
$14.99 USD, $17.99 CAD
144 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401237042, 1401237045

Contributor Bio:
Irish writer Peter Milligan joined Vertigo with SKREEMER in 1989 which led to several other works including SHADE THE CHANGING MAN and ENIGMA. For the DC Universe, he has written Batman in DETECTIVE COMICS and is acknowledged as the driving force behind the Knightfall event. He began his comics career with England’s 2000 AD, notably its Bad Company serial. He was named one of Entertainment Weekly’s “it” writers in 2002. Currently he is the writer of HELLBLAZER and RED LANTERNS.

Summary: As a part of the acclaimed DC Comics – The New 52 event of September 2011, a new type of super-team must come together when supernatural forces threaten the DCU – Justice League Dark!
The witch known as The Enchantress has gone mad, unleashing a wave of chaos that not even the combined powers of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg can stop. Shade the Changing Man, Madame Xanadu, Deadman, Zatanna, Mindwarp and John Constantine may be our only hope – but how can we put our trust in beings whose very presence makes ordinary people break out in a cold sweat? Critically acclaimed writer Peter Milligan brings together an unorthodox team for the most unnatural threats. With stunning art by up and coming star Mikel Janin, Justice League Dark Vol. 1 visits the unexplored corners of the DCU!
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Justice League Dark Vol. 2: The Books of Magic (The New 52)
Jeff Lemire, Mikel Janin
On Sale Date: July 16, 2013
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
224 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401240240, 1401240240

Contributor Bio:
Award-winning Canadian cartoonist Jeff Lemire is the creator of the acclaimed monthly comic book series SWEET TOOTH published by DC/Vertigo and the award winning graphic novel ESSEX COUNTY published by Top Shelf. He also writes ANIMAL MAN, FRANKENSTEIN AGENT OF S.H.A.D.E. and SUPERBOY for DC Comics.

In 2008 Jeff won the Schuster Award for Best Canadian Cartoonist, and The Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent. He also won the American Library Association’s prestigious Alex Award, recognizing books for adults with specific teen appeal. In 2010 Essex County was named as one of the five Essential Canadian Novels of the Decade!

Recently named one of Wizard magazines 25 “rising stars”, Jeff has also written a new graphic novel for Top Shelf called THE UNDERWATER WELDER. He currently lives and works in Toronto with his wife and son.

Summary: New York Times best selling author Jeff Lemire takes over Justice League Dark and just when you thought it couldn’t get darker…

Vampires across the world have gone berserk, attacking anything with a pulse. Fearing her apocalyptic vision of the future has come to pass, Madame Xanadu mobilizes the team to intervene. But everything the Justice League Dark members know about how to slay a vampire is useless, for the world has changed.
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Justice League Dark Vol. 3: The Death of Magic (The New 52)
Jeff Lemire
On Sale Date: February 4, 2014
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
192 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401242459, 1401242456

Contributor Bio:
Award-winning Canadian cartoonist Jeff Lemire is the creator of the acclaimed monthly comic book series SWEET TOOTH published by DC/Vertigo and the award winning graphic novel Essex County published by Top Shelf.

Now one of DC Comics cornerstone writers, Jeff was prominent in the publisher’s recent “New 52” line-wide relaunch as the writer of ANIMAL MAN and FRANKENSTEIN: Agent of S.H.A.D.E. He has also written the monthly adventures of SUPERBOY and THE ATOM and is set to tackle JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK.

In 2008 Jeff won the Schuster Award for Best Canadian Cartoonist and The Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent. He also won the American Library Association’s prestigious Alex Award, recognizing books for adults with specific teen appeal. He has also been nominated for 5 Eisner awards and 5 Harvey Awards.

In 2010 Essex County was named as one of the five Essential Canadian Novels of the Decade. He currently lives and works in Toronto with his wife and son.

Summary: Transported to another dimension by the Books of Magic, Tim Hunter and Zatanna awake in a world where magic once ruled in peace until mad scientists banned magic and forced all of the magical creatures underground in exile.

Tim soon finds out that his ancestors are tied to this world and that only he, through the Books of Magic, can free the “Wild World.”
Unsure of what transpired when Tim and Zatanna disappeared, the remaining members of JLD, with the help of Tim Hunter’s father, manage to transport themselves to the “Wild World” and soon find that the rules of magic here are very different and very deadly.

This volume collects issues #14-21 of Justice League Dark.
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Justice League Dark Vol. 4: The Rebirth of Evil (The New 52)
Jeff Lemire, Mikel Janin
On Sale Date: August 26, 2014
$16.99 USD, $19.99 CAD
208 pages
Trade Paperback
9781401247256, 1401247253

Contributor Bio:
Award-winning Canadian cartoonist Jeff Lemire is the creator of the acclaimed monthly comic book series SWEET TOOTH published by DC/Vertigo and the award winning graphic novel ESSEX COUNTY published by Top Shelf. He also writes ANIMAL MAN, FRANKENSTEIN AGENT OF S.H.A.D.E. and SUPERBOY for DC Comics.

In 2008 Jeff won the Schuster Award for Best Canadian Cartoonist, and The Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent. He also won the American Library Association’s prestigious Alex Award, recognizing books for adults with specific teen appeal. In 2010 Essex County was named as one of the five Essential Canadian Novels of the Decade!

Recently named one of Wizard magazines 25 “rising stars”, Jeff is also hard at work on a new graphic novel for Top Shelf called THE UNDERWATER WELDER, due in 2012. He currently lives and works in Toronto with his wife and son.

Summary: The Justice League Dark team is called into action by Wonder Woman in hopes of finding Pandora’s Box, which may hold the only answers to save an ailing Superman. Not about to let the Seven Deadly Sins escape from Pandora’s Box, The Phantom Stranger pleads with the remaining members of the Justice League to stop Wonder Woman before she accidentally puts an end to the world as they know it.

This volume collects Justice League Dark #22-29.

— +++ —

3 Comments on DC Offers A TV Guide For New Readers, last added: 10/20/2014
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12. 31 Days of Halloween: Junji Ito does Pokemon

pokemon junji ito full.0 31 Days of Halloween: Junji Ito does Pokemon

I know we’ve been slacking a bit with 31 Days due to the horrors of New York Comic-Con, but it’s full sped ahead to the pumpkins now. And here is the best thing you will hear today, tomorrow or possibly in a lifetime: Japanese Horror master Junji Ito Is doing a Pokemon collaboration.

Yeah that’s right. The creator of Uzumaki, Museum of Terror, the Long Hair in the Attic and much more, is doing POKEMON.

The news was announced in Japan as a “Collaboration,” you know, like Tokidoki doing Marvel, except terrifying and unspeakable. It’s called “Kowapoke,” which means “Scarypoke” and a single phone wallpaper image has been released thus far. That’s Banette, cute little Banette, admittedly not the nicest Pokemon, now all Kowapoke’d up. T-shirts are being given away in Japan now because life is unknowable and terrifying.

Ito is one of the greatest, most unsettling cartoonists alive. We’ve spotlighted him several times before. This is only the creepy icing on the scary cake!

If you’d like to read some Ito, or just get into his weird world, we strongly recommend Uzumaki, published in one volume late last year, the story of a town obsessed with spirals and the terror they bring. Connie C has a good round-up of his work here.

Source, via Tiny Cartridge

1 Comments on 31 Days of Halloween: Junji Ito does Pokemon, last added: 10/20/2014
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13. Review: Aurora West Rises

the rise of aurora west Review: Aurora West Rises

By Matthew Jent

The Rise of Aurora West

Written by JT Petty and Paul Pope

Art by David Rubin

Published by First Second

 

“You don’t have to attack what’s attacking you.”

At this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, Paul Pope appeared on a panel called “Middle Grade Extravaganza,” which discussed comics for a younger audience. Younger than the grown-ups who are currently buying superhero comics, at least. A young fan approached the mic during the Q&A and he asked how Pope got the idea for Battling Boy, the long-awaited original graphic novel released by First Second last year.

Pope responded immediately that he wanted to serve an audience that modern comics have left behind. “I have nephews who were your age,” he said, “and they thought it was cool I was making comics, but they can’t see most of it. It’s geared toward adults. I wanted to write the best superhero for people your age, so they don’t have to keep going back to Batman, who is 75 years old, and Spider-Man, who is middle-aged.”

The Rise of Aurora West, a prequel/spinoff to Battling Boy, expands the world of Arcopolis and the monster fighters who try to keep that megalopolis safe. Arcopolis as a nightly curfew that attempts to keep kids safe from the monsters (quite literally, they are goblin-faced, spaghetti-armed creatures with razor-sharp teeth) who prowl the dark alleys. Aurora West is a teenage monster hunter trained by her father, Batman-stand-in Haggard West, a super-rich adventurer with a face-fitting mask, high tech gadgets, and a Westmobile. In Battling Boy, Haggard is dead and Aurora is left to battle monsters on her own. In Rise, Aurora is still being trained by her father to, in his words, “make her strong enough to survive when I’m gone.”

Though set in the same world, Aurora West has a tone than the action heavy, magic-t-shirt story of Battling Boy. Aurora is not the strongest fighter or the surest of foot, but she’s got an investigative mind. She notices details others miss, even her father, who is “Arcopolis’ Wiliest Detective.” She plays squab at school (a game that seems to involve mallets and baseball bats, but not necessarily a ball?), practices “anti-mandible kenpo” with Ms. Grately (the Wests’ version of Alfred Pennyworth), and ignores (or doesn’t notices) flirtatious asides from Hoke, a boy from school she brings along on illicit investigations. As Aurora and Hoke look for clues in a library, his whispered “you’re so pretty” is a welcome reminder — right before the story kicks into creepy/action/conclusion mode — that this is still a story about kids, intended for an audience about that the same age or younger.

Aurora West can be read and enjoying without any foreknowledge of Battling Boy. It’s clearly established from the start that Arcopolis is a city with a monster problem, and that Haggard West is a Batman-figure with doom in his future. In Haggard’s case, the event from his past that’s made him the grim avenger he is today is the death of his wife — and Aurora’s mother. But Aurora is clearly our main character. She’s learning how to fight monsters, but more importantly, she’s learning when to listen to her mentors and when to trust her instincts. She’s learning to ask why there are monsters in Arcopolis, and discovering there might be more to their motivations besides madness and appetite.

Written by Pope with JT Petty, Aurora West is illustrated in black-and-white by David Rubin. Rubin’s work resembles a wonderful hybrid of Pope, Jeff Smith, Ren & Stimpy’s John Kricfalusi (those scrunched faces, that sweat!), and a pinch of Charles Burns. He employs great visual effects — the glare of light that obscures the face of Aurora’s mother the first time we see her, the thought balloon turning gears when Aurora puts something together in her head — and every page really works as a page. They are clearly constructed moments of story. Whether that comes from a tight script from Petty & Pope or from Rubin’s storytelling sensibilities — or both — it makes for an engagingly page-turning read, and it makes me think of Pope’s own masterwork (in my own opinion, at least), THB. Like THB, the art of Aurora West balances sci-fi action with adolescent drama, and while it gets spooky, it never stops being fun. Rubin’s monsters go from silly to strange to scary without losing any of their power, and when, late in the book, a strange creature steps from the shadows that is itself unsure whether it is a monster, a ghost, or something else altogether, I found myself looking around my apartment nervously. That’s a testament to Rubin’s work with mood and shadow just as much — if not more — as Petty & Pope’s words.

Zachary Clemente spoke to Paul Pope about Aurora West at NYCC, and Pope said that Aurora’s influences are H.P. Lovecraft and Boris Karloff Universal Monster movies, providing the flip side to Battling Boy’s wellspring of Jack Kirby, Moebius, and Miyazaki. Aurora West also speaks to something else Pope mentioned in that SDCC panel: that he’s writing to himself as a younger person.

The Rise of Aurora West is about a girl being propelled out of adolescence and into young adulthood, discovering that maybe her father doesn’t have all the answers, and that the imaginary friend she half-remembers from her youth might not have been so imaginary after all. It deepens a world of new mythologies introduced in Battling Boy and proves that there is a way to create new superhero comics, for a younger audience, without having to use the same old corporate characters of decades past.

Haggard West might be doomed, but Aurora is on the rise.

2 Comments on Review: Aurora West Rises, last added: 10/20/2014
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14. Daily Marvel Mystery Teaser: Armor Wars!

Armor Wars 2015 Daily Marvel Mystery Teaser: Armor Wars!

Yikes for today’s Marvel mystery event thing we go all the way back to the 80s! Before there were Events!!! Armor Wars, by David Michelinie and Bob Layton, was one of the original golden age of Iron Man storyline and showcased Tony Stark’s penchant for being a hoarder with his armor suits as being a bad thing.

The current promo, by Steve Pugh, shows a bunch of different Stark Armors, including a mecha-szed one blowing a hole through the face of the Statue of Liberty. Nice one, Tony. Also shown: the Hulkbuster armor, West Coast Avengers-Iron Man and more.

Shoulder pads, John Hughes and Armor Wars. Those were the days.

0 Comments on Daily Marvel Mystery Teaser: Armor Wars! as of 10/17/2014 8:44:00 PM
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15. Dave Gibbons named the first Comics Laureate in the UK

dave gibbons Dave Gibbons named the first Comics Laureate in the UK

Hm let’s see, we need an ambassador of comics who can work with schools, educators and more to show how comics can contribute to literacy and learning. We need someone who is smart, distinguished and universally loved…

I know! Let’s get Dave Gibbons!

And so it has been announced at this year’s Lake Festival which is being held this weekend.

Bestselling graphic novelist Dave Gibbons is to become the first Comics Laureate. The announcement was made by internationally acclaimed comics authority and graphic novelist Scott McCloud at the launch of new charity Comics Literacy Awareness (CLAw) at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival on 17th October.

The role of Comics Laureate is to be appointed biennially to a distinguished comics writer or artist in recognition of their outstanding achievement in the field. Their role is to champion children’s literacy through school visits, training events for school staff and education conferences. Dave Gibbons has won universal praise for his comics and graphic novel work for Marvel and DC Comics including the ground-breaking Watchmen (with Alan Moore), as well as the UK’s own 2000AD and Doctor Who. “It’s a great honour for me to be nominated as the first Comics Laureate,” he says. “I intend to do all that I can to promote the acceptance of comics in schools. It’s vitally important not only for the pupils but for the industry too.” Dave Gibbons takes up his two-year position from February 2015.

Comics Literacy Awareness (CLAw) is a new UK charity formed by a group of passionate, highly experienced professionals from the fields of education and comics. Its primary aim is to improve the literacy levels of children and to promote the variety and quality of comics and graphic novels today, particularly in the education sector.

The Board of CLAw’s trustees includes renowned graphic novelist Bryan Talbot, winner of the 2012 Costa Award for Best Biography for Dotter Of Her Father’s Eyes (a collaboration with his wife Mary Talbot). He says, “In many other countries, comics and graphic novels have been used extensively in literacy drives. The sheer accessibility of the medium, the way in which complex information can be easily absorbed through its combination of words and pictures, actively encourages reading in those intimidated by endless blocks of cold print.”

The other trustees are Julie Tait, Director of the Lakes International Comic Art Festival; Ian Churchill, comic book artist for DC and Marvel, and writer/artist on his Image Comics title Marineman; Emma Hayley, Managing Director and Publisher of UK’s independent graphic novel company, SelfMadeHero; Paul Register, school librarian and founder of the Stan Lee Excelsior Award; and Dr. Mel Gibson, comics scholar and senior lecturer at Northumbria University.

Alongside the Comics Laureateship, CLAw will work closely with schools on a number of initiatives, including staff training events and classroom visits by comics professionals. They will liaise with museums and galleries on a variety of comics-related projects, and provide reading lists and general guidance to school staff and parents unfamiliar with the comics medium, demonstrating the wider educational benefits it can offer.

1 Comments on Dave Gibbons named the first Comics Laureate in the UK, last added: 10/18/2014
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16. $2000 statue and more stolen at New York Comic Con

extralarge $2000 statue and more stolen at New York Comic Con

While the harassment problems seems to have been put under control, by and large, there are a rather alarming number of reports of theft from the show, including this one, about a hand painted “Dunny” statue worth $2000 being stolen from a booth. The culprit was caught on tape taking the items at 7:25 after the show closed and fled on foot.

Nick Curtis, an associate editor at the magazine, said the 20-inch, high-priced action figure had been hand-painted by artist Jon-Paul Kaiser during the event.

“What had been done is that an artist did a live painting of it during Comic Con, making it essentially a one-of-a-kind piece of art on a 3-D canvas,” he said.

The bunny-like figurines are typically 3-inches tall, mass-produced and retail for $15, Curtis said.

The thief also stole a Popaganda “TDY” figure worth $80 and a Goodley Toy action figure worth $100, police said.

I also saw tweets indicating that writer Amy Chu’s laptop was stolen, and there’s a report of an artist having some pages stolen as well.

Thievery doesn’t invite the same kind of “they were asking for it” response as other kinds of claims, but unfortunately, these incidents are a reminder that leaving valuable things lying around is not a good idea at a crowded con. It’s also a sad comment on an otherwise peaceful crowd.

I know of one creator who had his laptop stolen right off his table at a foreign show. (I also know of several people who had wallets stolen at comic book after partys over the years—enough so that I’d rather stand around with 20lbs of equipment on my shoulder than leave them unattended.) While these kind of thefts are not uncommon everywhere, there do seem to have been several at this year’s NYCC.

Anyway, keep an eye on valuables!

4 Comments on $2000 statue and more stolen at New York Comic Con, last added: 10/19/2014
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17. The Kubert School is having a open house tomorrow

kubert school open house The Kubert School is having a open house tomorrow

The longest running stand alone school to teach cartoonist is having an open house tomorrow from 1-4. Prospective students will meet faculty and get a tour.

Open houses at The Kubert School are a great way to learn about the school and program. Any prospective student and their family is welcome to attend. A tour of the school, teacher demonstrations, and meetings with our faculty are a part of the Open House experience. Scheduling a time is not necessary.

Founded by the great Joe Kubert, the school is currently run by his family, including Andy and Adam Kubert. Grads include Amanda Connor, Shane Davis, Skot Collins, and many more.

 

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18. British Comic Awards announce their short list

Posy Simmonds British Comic Awards announce their short list

The British Comic Awards have announced their short list of nominees and that the great Posy Simmonds will be inducted into the hall of fame. The nominees were selected by the BCA Committee based on suggestions from the public and winners will be chosen by a panel consisting of Jonathan Entwistle, Jessica Hynes. Danny John-Jules (yes The Cat from Red Dwarf!), Jonathan Ross and Suzy Varty. Winners will be announced November 15th at Thought Bubble.

Best Comic
• Dangeritis: A Fistful of Danger – Robert M Ball and Warwick Johnson-Cadwell (Great Beast)
• In The Frame – Tom Humberstone (New Statesman)
• Raygun Roads – Owen Michael Johnson, Indio!, Mike Stock and Andy Bloor (Self published)
• Tall Tales & Outrageous Adventures #1: The Snow Queen & Other Stories – Isabel Greenberg (Great Beast)
• The Wicked + The Divine #1 – Kieron Gillen, Jaime McKelvie, Matt Wilson and Clayton Cowles (Image Comics)

Best Book
• The Absence – Martin Stiff (Titan Books)
• Celeste – I.N.J. Culbard (Self Made Hero)
• The Encyclopedia of Early Earth – Isabel Greenberg (Jonathan Cape)
• Lighter Than My Shadow – Katie Green (Jonathan Cape)
• Sally Heathcote: Suffragette – Mary Talbot, Kate Charlesworth and Bryan Talbot (Jonathan Cape)

Young People’s Comic Award
• Bad Machinery Vol 2: The Case of The Good Boy – John Allison (Oni Press)
• BOO! – Paul Harrison-Davies, Andrew Waugh; Warwick Johnson-Cadwell, Jonathan Edwards, James Howard, Gary Northfield and Jamie Smart (Self published)
• Corpse Talk: Season 1 – Adam Murphy (David Fickling Books)
• Hilda and the Black Hound – Luke Pearson (Flying Eye Books)
• The Beginner’s Guide to Being Outside – Gill Hatcher (Avery Hill Publishing)

Emerging Talent
• Alison Sampson (Genesis, Shadows (In The Dark) – artist)
• Briony May Smith (Tam Lin, The Courting of Fair Spring and Red-Nosed Frost, The Mermaid)
• Rachael Smith (House Party, One Good Thing, Flimsy, Vicky Park (Leicester Mercury), The Amazing Seymore (Moose Kid Comics))
• Becca Tobin (Eye Contact, Peppermint Butler’s Peppermint Bark (Adventure Time #30), numerous short comics)
• Corban Wilkin (Dreams of a Low Carbon Future – artist, Breaker’s End, If Not Now Then When (Offlife #6))

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19. Drifter #1 [Advanced Review]: The Sky is Full of Stars and Mystery

by Zachary Clemente

Drifter Cover Drifter #1 [Advanced Review]: The Sky is Full of Stars and MysteryWritten by Ivan Brandon, Art & Colors by Nic Klein, Letters by Clem Robins, Design by Tom Muller, Edited by Sebastian Griner, Published by Image Comics.

Mankind’s colonization of the galaxy has left countless planets mined bare and lifeless. A space transport crashes onto a backwater world whose unique properties set the stage for a story that combines the dark wonder of a strange and alien landscape with the struggles of an abandoned and lawless frontier town.

Something about the first issue of Drifter – the new frontier sci-fi story from Image Comics – leaves a raw, unnerved feeling in my gut that can’t be gripped. I can’t help but see an omnipresent sense of desperation that kicks off with the first page and gradually builds as Abram Pollux, our man in the midst, attempts to find sense in his new world. Bad things come in threes and he got dealt all of them.

There’s a poetic and almost antiquated mannerism to the way characters talk in the world that Drifter introduces us to. Their conversational cadence feels born out the expectation one would have of people living years in an isolated ramshackle frontier town on an alien planet: one part appropriately stunted, another part guarded familiarity, peppered with esoteric expressions. This kluged language serves the citizens and story of Drifter very well, serving to describe their affected state and the situation Pollux finds himself in.

drifter1 preview 01 Drifter #1 [Advanced Review]: The Sky is Full of Stars and MysteryPollux’s internal reactionary dialogue lends a tenable perspective to the oddities presented around him, grounding this rust-and-dust world in his steadfastness. Not without fault though – it’s clear that the Pollux we meet here is a mere glance and what he’s all about; a past of gunning, wronging, and suffering trailing behind him. Inklings of shrapnel from every stripe is present in Drifter - from Pollux’s past to the welded-together town sparsely populated by outcasts at best.

I feel now that Drifter is going to come in with questions, raise even more along the way, and drop us off without answering most – but that’s just fine with me. I’m a sucker for fiction that trusts its audience with the world as it as and doesn’t sweat the small stuff. While it’s clear that the world of Drifter is heady with history and phenomena; I believe that they are a means to provide context to the plight of its inhabitants and will aide in the construction of the ongoing drama that is Pollux’s recently saved life.

drifter1 Pg14 15 Drifter #1 [Advanced Review]: The Sky is Full of Stars and MysteryI want to make it clear that my previous commentary is coming from a holistic view; I wouldn’t find Drifter successful as mere words. I don’t mean to say that Brandon isn’t an accomplished writer, I just think that the way the story is being told couldn’t occur with his collaborators.  It’s strange, but for a story so intertwined with being “on the brink” Klein’s art is lush in a grandeur that seems of a uniquely European vein. Perhaps it’s the color choices, done by Klein as well, that evoke a willingness to experiment. I’m fondly reminded of the sketch and concept art of Ian McQue who blurs (perhaps literally) the line between paper and digital work that many contemporary artists ride. This extends to Robins’ letters, conveying narrative perspective with sublime ease. I’m not entirely sure it was him, but there is a really thoughtful segment where alien calls are powerfully featured as strong strokes of language that Pollux, therefore we, cannot decipher. Another exciting aspect is the inclusion of Muller’s design talents; carefully crafting a design evocative of star maps, he reminds us of the scale of Drifter. Considerations such as these can truly make world worth buying into.

Drifter #1 is a thoroughly enjoyable introduction to a clearly well-crafted frontier tale and I heartily encourage you to request your local store to order you a copy.

Final Order Cut-Off is Monday 10/20, Diamond Code: ICSEP140546.

Drifter #1 hits stands 11/12.

3 Comments on Drifter #1 [Advanced Review]: The Sky is Full of Stars and Mystery, last added: 10/16/2014
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20. Today’s Mystery Marvel Event teaser: Planet Hulk!

Planet Hulk 2015 Todays Mystery Marvel Event teaser: Planet Hulk!

Return with us to the simpler times of 2006. Miley Cyrus was an innocent young girl, everyone was racing to theaters to see Pirates of the Caribbean, and people wondere dif soccer would ever catch on in the US was the World cup was held in Germany. And the Hulk went to a faraway planet where he became a S&S hero, in Planet Hulk an event written by Greg Pak with art mostly by Carlo Pagulayan and Aaron Lopresti. In this throwback covers by Mukesh Singh, we see a PLANET of Hulks, some with handlebar moustaches, and Jack Kirby’s  Devil Dinosaur and Captain America all in a big pile.

What could it all mean?

Best guessed going around the internet are that this is some kind of tie-in to Secret Wars which is going to pit not goodbuys against bad guys, but reality against reality which is a much more meta, post modern way to approach Secret Wars. IF that’s what this is all about.

More to come, we’re sure.

 

 

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21. Roz Chast shortlisted for the National Book Award; Peter Bagge wins US Rockefeller Fellow grant

In our cartoonists getting plaudits corner this week, Roz Chast has made the five book short list for the National Books Awards for her exemplary Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? which deals with the twilight years of her hilarious, annoying and lovable parents. She is entered in the non-fiction category and it is the first adultcomic, and only the third graphic novel over all to ever make the NBA lists. The entire category:

Roz Chast, Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? (Bloomsbury)
Anand Gopal, No Good Men Among the Living: America, the Taliban, and the War through Afghan Eyes (Metropolitan Books/ Henry Holt and Company)
John Lahr, Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh (W.W. Norton & Company)
Evan Osnos, Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China(Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
Edward O. Wilson, The Meaning of Human Existence (Liveright Publishing Corporation/ W.W. Norton & Company)

Sounds hard to beat a book with a title like the last one, but go Roz!

womanrebel cover 759x1028 Roz Chast shortlisted for the National Book Award; Peter Bagge wins US Rockefeller Fellow grant

Peter Bagge (Hate, Woman Rebel) is one of 34 winners of the USA Artists fellows program which includes a $50,000 grant.

The unrestricted awards, announced Monday, are from the United States Artists program, a grant-making organization funded by philanthropic foundations and individuals to support creativity. The 16 women and 18 men were selected by experts in their fields and were among 116 nominated artists living in the United States.

 

Among the other winners, singer Meshell Ndegeocello, artist Edouard Duval-Carrié and so on. Bagge won the Rockefeller fellow grant, which given that he is a cartoonist is…awesome. According to his bio on the page he’s working on cartoon biographies of Zora Neale Hurston and Rose Wilder Lane, also awesome.

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22. Irwin Hasen given Eisner Award at NYCC 2014

by Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson

One of my favorite events at New York Comic Con was the Thursday night tribute and presentation to Irwin Hasen, 96 years old. Irwin has been drawing comics since 1940 beginning at Harry A. Chesler’s shop and then going on to DC drawing The Green Hornet, The Flash, Wonder Woman, the Green Lantern and creating Wildcat. Irwin then went on to co-create the long-running newspaper strip Dondi. Irwin is much loved and revered in the comics community and it was a poignant moment for all of us there to see him honored.

DannyIrwin 300x225 Irwin Hasen given Eisner Award at NYCC 2014

Danny Fingeroth and Irwin Hasen, comics legend.

Danny Fingeroth, comics scholar and editor at Marvel for many years was the emcee. Danny has written a number of how to books on comics as well as Superman on the Couch and Disguised as Clark Kent. Danny often presides over panels about comic book history and provides a solid background in the subject as well as a relaxed and fun atmosphere.

Paul Levitz was at DC for over 35 years and president there from 2002-2009. He’s considered by everyone in the industry to be a super comics scholar and he wrote 75 Years of DC. Paul spoke of Irwin’s accomplishments over the years and gave us a historical overview. Danny introduced Paul with the point that 75 Years of DC is a hernia-inducing book. It is a tome and one that is well written and leaves no stone unturned. You can see what kind of evening this was. There was no way this was going to be some solemn occasion with the constant kibitzing back and forth from Irwin to each of the panelists and the moderator and the audience erupting in frequent laughter.

PaulLevitz2 300x300 Irwin Hasen given Eisner Award at NYCC 2014

Paul Levitz, Comics historian and past president of DC Comics.

Dan Makara, a filmmaker who has produced a documentary of Irwin’s life, Irwin, a New York Story talked about why he decided to do the film and gave us some idea of how he worked with Irwin.

DanMakara 300x300 Irwin Hasen given Eisner Award at NYCC 2014

Dan Makara, filmmaker, Irwin, A New York Story

Michael Uslan, the producer of all the Batman movies and a writer of many comic book projects from Archie to Doc Savage spoke about Irwin’s accomplishments in comics and then presented the award to Irwin.

MichaelIrwin 300x300 Irwin Hasen given Eisner Award at NYCC 2014

Michael Uslan presents the Eisner Award to Irwin Hasen.

Irwin was visibly moved and pleased to receive the Eisner and it was terrific to see someone of his age and length of time in comics able to enjoy this special moment.

The film was shown immediately after. Dan Makara has done a terrific job using fun ways of telling the story with animation and cartoons as well as the traditional voiceover and talking heads of the typical documentary. The ending is quite wonderful and I’m not going to give it away because you should see this tribute to Irwin for yourself wherever it’s shown.

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23. A movement is afoot to bring a comics festival to San Francisco

1912432 795231507190472 3972315543962102795 n A movement is afoot to bring a comics festival to San Francisco

A group has formed in San Francisco to discuss bringing a comics festival to SF, currently bereft of comics event with the move of WonderCon to Anaheim and soon APE to San Jose. The group has called for a town hall meeting on Monday, October 20th:

Many of us were saddened by the news that the Alternative Press Expo will be relocated to San Jose in 2015.

San Francisco has the unique opportunity to imagine a new comics-centric festival from the ground up. Are we looking for another big hall convention with rows and rows of exhibitors? Or is SF more suited to host a multi-venue festival of comics? From tech to tradition, how can we leverage San Francisco’s strengths as a city to continue to make it a destination for comics professionals and enthusiasts alike?

Please join us for a town hall meeting to discuss the possibilities, challenges, and realities of establishing a new and exciting comics festival here in San Francisco.

Comics retailers, artists, writers, and industry professionals are all welcome to participate in this important discussion.

Directions to Timken Lecture Hall, 1111 8th Street, San Francisco:

https://www.cca.edu/about/directions

The meeting was formed by The California College of the Arts which offers an MFA n comics. The main organizer seems to be Matt Silady. and listed as attending are a bunch of Bay Area comics mainstays.

Without much knowledge of the local scene, the main factor would seem to be costs, as usual, as SF is currently one of the most expensive places in the US. Of course it is also one of the birthplaces of world comics culture, and still home to a few doughty souls who make a living in the funnies, and as well as some of the best known comics shops. Image Comics is nearby. There is certainly a vibrant scene there. Is there room for another CAF on the scene? Show up Monday to help find out.

2 Comments on A movement is afoot to bring a comics festival to San Francisco, last added: 10/17/2014
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24. NYCC ’14: Wes Craig Double-Downs with Dynamic Panels and Recurring Symbols in ‘Deadly Class’ and ‘Blackhand’

by Zachary Clemente
IMG 1338 NYCC 14: Wes Craig Double Downs with Dynamic Panels and Recurring Symbols in Deadly Class and Blackhand

In the incredibly crowded Artist Alley of New York Comic-Con, I sat down with illustrator Wes Craig to talk about his work on Blackhand Comics and Deadly Class, both published in print by Image Comics. His work exhibits some of the most exciting paneling structures and dynamic representation of motion, at least to me. I’m pleased to say that our conversation was halted many times as eager attendees came up get copies of Deadly Class signed, buy a copy of Blackhand, or just share a few words. Craig was worked on Guardians of the Galaxy, Judge DreddT.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents, Batman Annual, and many more.

Comics Beat: Like many, I first found your work in Deadly Class, then started look at Blackhand [Comics]. I found your panel structure and your ability to move the reader’s eye dynamic and fluid, even when panels doesn’t necessarily exist. How does your process begin and how does that looser form start taking place?

Wes Craig: For years in my sketchbook, I’ve been trying to think of different ways of presenting a page as something you maybe haven’t seen before. Deadly Class was kind of my first opportunity to do that for other people to see. I did a bit of it in Blackhand and my previous work for myself that no one really ever saw, but Deadly Class was the first public version of that.

I take what Rick [Remender] has in the script and I try to figure out what the scene is about. A lot of have people have brought up the first issue – it’s really just a flat-out chase scene. I know that you can’t present motion in comics and that’s a problem with comics: you can’t do music or motion – but I try to make the page dynamic and make it feel like it’s kind of moving. So, I go back to my sketchbooks to come up with as many ideas as I can like breaking the borders or having characters fall into the next panel, and all that kind of stuff helps with that feeling.

CB: With Blackhand, I didn’t realize how it was going to be published in print. It being an object with a horizontal format is exciting.

WC: Those started off as webcomics and I wasn’t sure at first if I was ever going to publish them – that’s why it’s kind of formatted like a computer screen. It makes for an interesting looking thing and not may books have those dimensions. It stands out in a stack of other comics.

TheSeed2 NYCC 14: Wes Craig Double Downs with Dynamic Panels and Recurring Symbols in Deadly Class and Blackhand

Blackhand Comics – The Seed

CB: The three stories in Blackhand all exhibit very different paneling styles each a discussion on three different types of stories. When did you working on Blackhand?

WC: It started around the same time as Deadly Class, I forget exactly. I think I started it just before Rick initially emailed me to work on Deadly Class, so it’s been going on for a while. It just takes a while to get it done, obviously. I do it in between issues; there’s usually a little gap between when I finish an issue of Deadly Class and when the next script comes in. I’ll try to get in as many pages as a I can, sometimes on weekends or whatever. Most of my days are spent on Deadly Class so it’s kind of a slow process, but I still managed to release three stories in this book. I have two new stories online, and I’m working on the thumbnails of the third story. That’ll all hopefully be Blackhand Book 2, maybe next year or something.

CB: Will that be through Image as well?

WC: Yeah, I think this’ll [Blackhand Comics] do well enough that it’ll be good for everyone involved – they seem to be totally up for it.

CB: It does appear to be flying off your table.

WC: I actually had to go back to the Image booth to get more from them. They have so many books there, that this can get lost in the shuffle for them but for people specifically coming to see me, it’s right there. [Gestures to the sole remaining copy on his table]

CB: I couldn’t find a lot about your earlier career, what was the path you took?

WC: I’ve been working professionally for a little bit over 10 years–I keep saying that, but I’ve been saying it for two years now. So 12 years or whatever it may be, but it’s always been an issue of this here, an issue of that there. [I had] a little run on some Wildstorm stuff back in the day, a little run of Guardians of the Galaxy – so I’ve never been known as the guy who does that one thing. This convention’s a very different experience for me now because I’m the guy drawing Deadly Class so I have a constant stream of people that are into it here to see me.

The initial thing with Rick started when I did an issue with Lee [Loughridge] [for DC] – I’m a big fan of his work in Deadly Class and his work in general. I kept on bugging DC with working with with Lee, thinking we’d match up well together; it took a while to convince them, but when we finally got the chance with the Legends of the Dark Knight digital comic. [...] I think Rick used to live down the street from Lee and they’d get together, drink beers, and shoot the shit and when Lee was working on one of the Batman pages, Rick leaned over asking “who’s this guy?” It was pure coincidence – I’m a big Rick Remender fan and I’m a big fan of the artists he chooses to work with; I was flattered that he gave me the shot. We get along well now and it’s kind of the perfect situation.

deadly NYCC 14: Wes Craig Double Downs with Dynamic Panels and Recurring Symbols in Deadly Class and Blackhand

Volume 1 Cover

CB: It looks like you never really had any ownership in your previously published work. How is it having way more of an input within a full story?

WC: It’s great, man. You just feel more invested in it – all that experimental page composition stuff was always in the back of my mind, but I never tried it in the Marvel or DC stuff. People seem to love it and I wonder why I didn’t start doing it earlier, but you just don’t feel the same way. [...] You’re not sure you want to give them your best stuff because once you give them that, they own it. You don’t see as many characters being created for those companies anymore. If they have a great character, they’re going to do it themselves. Once I started Deadly Class, I felt more free to stretch out.

CB: What kind of input do you have on how the story of Deadly Class forms?

WC: That’s part of–not just being co-owners–but being invested. [...] He’ll do the plot, but we’ll talk out ideas a lot, informing what will become the next issues and we’ll talk out where we want to go with it. I feel like the other books that he’s working on are more structured in terms of where they’re gonna go, but with this one we don’t know for sure where we’re gonna end up; we wanted to be a bit more free with it. So he’ll call me up, we’ll talk through ideas figuring out what’s the most interesting way to go with it, he’ll write the script, then call me up again. I think his thing is that he likes to talk it out a few times with not just me until it’s really fully figured out in his mind; he can tell by our reactions what’s working and what’s not.

It’s weird working with him, actually. When I write my own stuff for Blackhand, I’m much more structured, deliberate, and I take my time whereas he’ll give me a scene and if it’s not working right he’ll want to fix it up, asking me what I want to do and I’ll have to be on my toes and come up with something on the spot. It’s not what I’m used to but it stretches a different muscle, spitting out ideas until you find something that works – it’s pretty collaborative.

CB: I feel that’s something we’re seeing with more Image titles than most; the divisions of writer/artist are necessarily as clean cut.

WC: For sure. I’m sure it’s different with each team but there’s a bunch of guys that I talk to who have a great back and forth.

deadlyclass16 NYCC 14: Wes Craig Double Downs with Dynamic Panels and Recurring Symbols in Deadly Class and Blackhand

Deadly Class – Issue 4 internal art

CB: In that same vein, does the conversational collaboration extend to working with Lee?

WC: Well, he’s amazing so I pretty much do let him do what he wants unless there’s something very specific that I have in mind. But when he’s finished with the colors, I might go in and tweak something; it’s very alive as we’re working on it. When Rick gives me the script, the dialogue is just the basic idea of what people say and when he gets the artwork, he goes in and write the actual dialogue. It’s always ongoing and forming as we’re working on it. When I’m working on the art, I have ideas for the colors, but since I like to be left alone and come up with my own ideas, I try to do the same thing for Lee. We set the tone for the colors in the beginning; looking at a Batman: Year One and 80’s colors – it was a good inspiration. I’m [also] a big fan of John Workman as a letterer, so when we’re talking to Rus Wooton, I was asking if he could do the thing with circular balloons with a clipped-off tail that’s kind of John Workman’s way of doing it–Alex Toth did balloons the same way. I thought that would be cool, but aside from that, once we set the tone its hands off and we let them do what they do.

CB: Something I love with Lee’s work on Deadly Class is that he has this amazing perceptive use of black tones.

WC: Yeah, like any good colorist, he understands how to tell a story with the color. He doesn’t like to color until it’s all the artwork is in which can get a little bit tight on the deadline, but just like how I don’t let getting script pages one at a time, he wants to be able to see the whole thing at once.

CB: For Rick, this is a very personal story where he’s bringing in a lot of his own youth. Does any of that happen to you?

WC: Yeah, visual-wise. I get to slip in the occasional thing that’s for me. None of it is obvious, just background things you may not pick up on. I’m a little bit younger than Rick; his teens years were late 80’s and mine were early 90’s, so I’m a bit more of a grunge Nirvana kind of a kid and he’s a punk guy. In that era, my experiences are a little more flowery and nice because I was just a kid with Saturday morning cartoons, but he was a teenager going through the kind of crazy stuff you go through. I just take what I went through as a teenager and relate it back to the 80’s version – it’s all the same thing. He was a punk growing up and I was more of a rockabilly kid, but that sort of comes from a punk thing so we both had very similar stuff happen to us there. His stories are way crazier, but we’ve both been jumped, both been in fights, both done…stuff. Drugs and whatever else.

CB: I think it’s important for people working together to be coming from a unique perspective – from a personal place.

WC: It takes a while to do that, but that’s how it works best. I’m not one of those people who would have a public facebook account for everyone to look at; I don’t put my personal life out there. But to have it matter, you definitely have to put a bit of yourself into the work or else it’s just kind of dry and unrealistic.

CB: Shifting gears a bit – one of the things that really draws people to Deadly Class is the covers. How does a cover form for you and how do you start making it?

WC: Well, Rick likes them to be traditional in style, where the covers have to do with something that’s going on in that issue. The covers need to be done way in advance of the actual pages, so I don’t find that works very well for me. We just need to have them thematically match up with season or that story arc or whatever it is, which is kind of the way it’s going right now. The covers I’m doing right now aren’t exactly about what’s going on in that issue, but they have to do with that time in the school. I come up with a lot of thumbnails–a lot of roughs–trying to think of something visually standout and interesting. I shoot them over to our editor Sebastian Griner and Rick and we talk about what’s hitting us – I obviously push the ones I like the most. The thing with this stuff is there’s no Superman or Batman or Spider-Man on the cover to sell the comic to people. I think a lot of the Image stuff is really interesting cover-wise because you have to do something to stand out from the bunch. Unless you’re Walking Dead or Saga, you have to do something to stand out, so a lot of people have very design-y covers so they don’t get lost in the pack of comics.

DeadlyClass CoverB 72dpi NYCC 14: Wes Craig Double Downs with Dynamic Panels and Recurring Symbols in Deadly Class and Blackhand

CB: It totally works, at least for me. When Deadly Class comes out, I put it on the top of my stack to say “look at this sweet-lookin’ book.”

WC: [Laughs] Yeah, that’s the idea. This is kind of a blood-dripping kind of theme [gesturing to his banner] but it could be paint, it could be blood; it’s just a dripping motif I try to incorporate into some of the covers and stories. I visualize that if it ever became a TV show, the would have to use it in the opening credits in some way.

CB: Along those lines, I’m curious about your use of recurring symbology in both Blackhand and Deadly Class. How conscious are you when creating these and making sure they serve their purpose.

WC: I’m pretty conscious of it. I don’t have as much control over it in Deadly Class since it’s Rick’s story, but if I can find a way to fit in a previously used symbol I will. For instance, when Marcus’s parents are killed, he lets go of a balloon and if you use that enough, it’ll mean something to the reader. You don’t have to show the whole flashback again, you can show just a little glimpse of the balloon and that means Marcus is thinking back about his parents. I saw it in David Mack’s Kabuki a lot; he would reuse these same symbols over and over again. Frank Miller did it a lot too; like the death scene in Dark Knight Returns, where his mom’s pearl necklace is snapped – you see it in slow motion and it becomes little circles. Then, three or four chapters later, all you have to show is that one little panel with those circles, and you know what he’s thinking.

It’s a strong thing that comics get to use, you can make a richer experience for the reader if you layer it that way. In Blackhand, I have full control of that so I try to have recurring elements a lot. It works better in a longer form like Deadly Class or a graphic novel where you have the pages to repeat, repeat, repeat until it means something to the reader. It’s like hitting notes [taps fingers on table], it becomes like a note in a song.

CB: Like hearing two seconds of a song and knowing exactly what it is?

WC: Yeah, there’s certain things we [comics] don’t have. We don’t have music, we don’t have motion. Music is a major thing that’s able to influence or manipulate people’s emotions; we can’t have that, but we can have other things like symbols. Not to hearken back to these 80’s comics, but Watchmen has these recurring elements that are really effective at hitting you. All of them become something more, and they get to play on it with variations, like there’s the bit with Dr. Manhattan with the smiley-face on Mars.

CB: It can add new perspectives to already an already touched-on theme.

WC: Especially with Deadly Class where the story is crazy and all-over-the-place, the use of recurring symbols can give it a form of cohesion.

CB: It’s successful visual storytelling.

WC: [Laughs] Thanks man.

CB: No Wes, thank you.

 

Wes Craig is an illustrator currently in Montreal and the artist on Deadly Class. You can also see his Blackhand Comics webcomic here.

The first volume of Deadly Class, “1987 – Reagan Youth” and the first volume of Blackhand Comics are available in print from Image Comics.

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25. Walking through Artist’s Alley at New York Comic Con 2014

By Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson

Attending a comic Con is one of the few events in our culture that offers the opportunity to meet favorite artists and writers. You can purchase a small or large piece of original art most of which is reasonable in price. Without the work of these talented people there would be no comics or conventions.

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Artists Alley

I spent a good bit of time this year at Artist’s Alley during New York Comic Con helping Danny Fingeroth at his table. (editor at Marvel and writer of numerous books) Thus I had a front row seat to an array of industry folks who came by to say hello.

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Paul Levitz stops to say hello to Bob Layton, Iron Man artist.

Bob Layton, best known for his work on Iron Man had the table next to ours and fans flocked to speak to him and get his autograph. My favorite moment was a tiny little boy of around 5 dressed as Iron Man who had his photo taken next to Bob. It was the quintessential adorable moment. Paul Levitz, past president of DC strolled by. Robin Riggs, a prolific and superb artist for both Marvel and DC sat on the other side and was also inundated with fans including small children wanting to have their photo taken with him.

 

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Iron Man artist Bob Layton

I finally got to meet Tom DeFalco, editor at Marvel and especially noted for his writing for Spider Man. Just so you know how revered he is, a fan came up to have Danny sign a comic and nearly passed out when he realized Tom was also there.

Robert Sikoryak stopped by and it was a treat to meet him. His current work is a witty rendition of some of the classics of literature—Masterpiece Comics.

Joe D’Esposito, a wonderful artist who started his career working for Neal Adams and then ventured into painting came by and showed us his exquisitely drawn book in progress on Bernard Krigstein who wrote an EC story called “Master Race” drawn by Al Feldstein. It was fun to listen in on all the industry inside talk.

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Joe D’esposito’s draft of his graphic novel.

I was able to wander the aisles–well push my way through the throng and this is just a small sample of some of the terrific people who were showing their artwork. As far as I’m concerned this is one of the primary reasons to attend any comic con and especially in New York where so many people in the industry from the past and present live.

I ran into Alex Simmons, one of my favorite writers. Alex who has written for Archie and Scooby Doo has created an exciting hero—Blackjack, an African-American soldier of fortune whose exploits take place in Indiana Jones territory. The comics are fun and beautifully drawn.

Allen Bellman, (93 years old) who was at Timely and Marvel during the Golden Age and part of the Captain America team was across the aisle. Allen is a ball of fire and always has a snappy comeback for any situation. He’s holding forth here in classic Allen Bellman fashion explaining the facts of Super Life to a reporter from a French magazine. His wife Roz is a marvel in her own right.

 

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Allen Bellman, legendary artist for Captain America makes his point.

Joe Staton, an artist who drew Dick Tracy for many years and his wife Hilary were just down the alley. Joe worked for both Marvel and DC and was the artist for the super-hero E-Man among a long list of achievements. Besides being a gentleman, Joe is one of the best artists working.

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Joe Staton and Lois Lane

It’s always a pleasure to see Dan Parent and Fernando Ruiz, graduates of the Joe Kubert School and artists for Archie Comics. I managed to get artwork from each several years ago at a Mocca event and I’ve been a fan ever since. Dan created the first openly gay character in Archie Comics, Kevin Keller.

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Artist Dan Parent and some of his work for Archie.

 

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Fernando Ruiz and his work

I passed by Scott Hanna, a prolific artist for DC and Marvel (are we seeing a theme here) and his gorgeous wife. I snagged a signed piece by Scott of a Batman comic several years ago when he came up to the Berkshires for a comics event and I’ve been following his work ever since.

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Scott Hanna with a glimpse of his work on Spider Man.

Gregory Benton, whose work is beautifully outside the box and is part of the exhibit Comics at Columbia: Past, Present, Future was on the scene. Gregory has an impressive resume including DC and the New York Times as well as The Village Voice and his book B+F. Word to the wise–he’s someone to watch as his career moves forward.

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Gregory Benton

Ryan Dunlavey is a terrific artist I just met who has done the artwork for a marvelous book with Fred Van Lente, Action Philosophers from Dark Horse. I interviewed them and will have more to say.

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Ryan Dunlavey, The Action Philosophers

There were also some new to me artists that struck my fancy. My niece Super Quigs loves Mouse Guard and David Petersen’s work is exciting to see. He’s going to be illustrating a version of Wind in the Willows. All of these guys are generous, kind and super fun to talk to besides being great talents.

I always look for someone new who strikes my fancy and I discovered among others, Kristen Gudsnuk and her comic Hench Girl: The Villain with a heart of gold. I love seeing Kristen’s comics and she’s also someone to keep an eye on.

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Kristen Gudsnuk

Hunter Fine created Nerd Pimp and did a successful Kickstarter project to self-publish and get his graphic novel out into the world. It’s quirky and fun so keep your eyes open for its appearance.

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Hunter Fine with his new comic Nerd Pimp.

And last but not least is Easy Pieces by Neil Dvorak who is working way outside the box. He’s a true original and that’s what it’s all about.

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Easy Pieces by Neil Dvorak

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