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After roughly a three year absence, Dynamite is returning to the Project Superpowers universe with the July debut of The Owl. The title will be written by J.T. Krul, currently writing Superman Beyond for DC and Jirni for Aspen. Heubert Khan Michael, recently drawing Vampirella, will be the artist.
Project Superpowers ran primarily from 2008-2010, with a few spin-offs like Black Terror. It was driven by Alex Ross and Jim Krueger, reviving a number of 1940s characters. The Owl was originally a Dell character from 1940-43. Ross, a co-plotter on the original P.S. material is only listed as a cover artist here. Dynamite is describing this as “a bridge series for more to come.” This isn’t totally surprising, since they’ve previously mentioned another run with the property at conventions.
This is also a return to Dynamite for Krul, who wrote a Highlander mini-series for them and an issue of Red Sonja back in the 2006-08 period.
Official PR follows:
J.T. KRUL! ALEX ROSS! THE OWL! DYNAMITE!
SAN DIEGO COMIC-CON LAUNCH FOR DYNAMITE’S HIGH FLYING HERO!
April 3, 2013, Mt. Laurel, NJ -The Owl returns to comics in his own limited series. Written by the critically acclaimed , J.T. Krul, with art by Heubert Khan Michael, and covers by Alex Ross and special Subscription Only Exclusive Covery Ardian Syaf, The Owl #1 hits stores this coming July!
In issue #1, lost for 50 years in an ethereal limbo, the Owl has come back to find a violent and desperate world of strangers. The woman he loved is gone, but he remains determined to continue his fight for justice. Can the Owl withstand the challenges awaiting him… or will this new reality crush his body and spirit?
“With a character like the Owl, I get to explore the heart of a true hero whose greatest threat seems to be the soul of the entire world around him,” says writer J.T. Krul. “Nick Terry used to live in a golden age it seemed, but he now finds himself in our present day – and a world filled with greed, apathy, and utter desperation at every turn. It’s the mark of a true hero, staying true to one’s ideals when there is little hope to be found. In this story, he’ll see what his mission and legacy has become and it will scare him more than anything else.”
“We at Dynamite extremely excited to work with J.T. again, hot off his DC Comics Exclusive,” adds Dynamite CEO / Publisher Nick Barrucci. ”We hope that this is the first of many more projects with J.T. and we are all in such anticipation for The Owl to ‘take flight’! The Owl is a bridge series for more to come from Dynamite, and we couldn’t be happier.”
Dynamite has announced the second tile in its new “Crime Line.” Uncanny will be the new title from Andy Diggle and Aaron Campbell, concerning a shady character who can borrow people’s skills running into an international conspiracy. Which is to say something along the lines of a thriller with a slight touch of superhuman activity around the edges.
Diggle’s about to get his highest profile U.S. book as he’s set to take over Action Comics, but until that hits the stands he’s probably best known for another thriller comic - The Losers, which managed to make it to the big screen a while back. He also did an original graphic novel for Vertigo’s defunct “Vertigo Crime” initiative called “Rat Catcher” about a mole/assassin in the Witness Protection Program that I thought highly of.
I do find it interesting that as Vertigo Crime goes away and there’s a changing of the guard at Vertigo, Dynamite’s Crime Line launches with titles from two regular Vertigo writers in Garth Ennis and Andy Diggle. It’s likely just a coincidence, but Vertigo was trying to cultivate something with their crime efforts and Dynamite has stepped into that marketplace, if not into the exact OGN format. With a semi-sequel to 100 Bullets returning to Vertigo in the form of Brother Lono, it will be interesting to see if there ends up being some sales synergy between the Crime Line and the new Vertigo. And really, if you’re looking to build up a genre, it’s better to have multiple publishers putting out material in it.
Official PR follows:
Andy Diggle’s Upcoming UNCANNY Series from Dynamite
Blends Paranormal Abilities with Fast-Paced Crime Thrills
March 14th, 2013, Mt. Laurel, NJ: Dynamite proudly confirms that fan-favorite writer Andy Diggle (Action Comics) will helm the new series Uncanny, set to launch in June as the second title in its burgeoning Crime Line. Illustrated by the immensely talented Aaron Campbell (The Shadow), Uncanny #1 will ship with two covers by superstar artists Jock (The Losers, Detective Comics) and Sean Phillips (Criminal, Fatale), split in equal ratio. A special exclusive variant will be available as well, featuring the artwork of Dan Panosian (Avengers: Citizen Kang) and offered only to comic fans who enroll in subscription programs with their preferred comic book retailer.
Uncanny introduces Weaver, a man born with an uncanny ability that allows him to steal other people’s skills – their memories, abilities, and expertise – for a limited time. A man with a power like that could change the world; but as a professional gambler, con-man, and thief-for-hire, Weaver prefers to look out for Number One. That is, until he finds himself drawn into a dangerous game of international intrigue where the rules keep changing, the players are hidden… and the first thing he stands to lose is his life. And maybe, just maybe, he isn’t so unique after all…
The anticipation for Andy Diggle’s new Uncanny series has been building since New York Comic-Con 2012, when it was announced that the red-hot writer would be helming an upcoming, yet unspecified series as part of Dynamite’s highly-touted Crime Line. With a huge list of high-profile comics under his belt (including Daredevil, Hellblazer, and Thunderbolts), plus as one of the industry’s premiere writers of crime fiction thanks to his acclaimed work on The Losers, Diggle will certainly bring a wealth of genre experience and edgy innovation to the new Dynamite launch, a title with the foreboding tag line: “Six billion skill sets. One last chance.”
“I’d been talking to Nick Barrucci off and on for years about doing something for Dynamite, and I’m thrilled that we’ve lined up a project that pushes all of my buttons,” says Diggle. ”Uncanny is an edgy, fast-paced crime thriller with just a hint of the paranormal. In other words, exactly the kind of comics I love to write – and to read. It’s very freeing, not having to pull your punches, to be able to present new characters without the reader knowing their entire life history in advance. Instead, the reader gets to discover this new world as Weaver does. They go on that journey with him. And it goes to some pretty dark places.”
“Andy Diggle is one of the most incredible writers in comics today. As a fan, I find each series that he writes more engaging than the previous one,” says Nick Barrucci, Dynamite’s President/CEO. ”I enjoyed his Hellblazer run, but when I read his Green Arrow: Year One and The Losers, I wanted to read more of Andy’s work and sought out his earlier comic series to read. And I’m glad I did! Having now read much of his body of work, I have a deep respect for his skill as a writer. After several years of exclusivity with DC and Marvel, I’m excited that Andy will be working with Dynamite on a series and genre that he loves. Uncanny is going to blow everyone’s minds.”
Emerald City Comicon kicks off tomorrow in Seattle. If you happen to be out that way, Dynamite has announced it’s convention schedule. If you haven’t noticed, Dynamite’s been adding more “name” creators lately, with another one set to be unveiled… well, there’s a 2pm signing Friday, so the creator pretty much has to be there, I suppose. It sounds like they’ve got some prints to give away, tied to Mark Waid and their new creator acquisition.
Official Hype follows, along with the convention covers being offered:
DYNAMITE ANNOUNCES THRILLING GUESTS AND
HOT EXCLUSIVES FOR EMERALD CITY COMICON
February 28, 2013, Mt. Laurel, NJ - Dynamite is proud to announce their creative guest line-up for this weekend’s Emerald City Comicon, along with their talent-packed signing schedule, three panels spotlighting some of the industry’s most beloved creators, a full selection of ECCC convention exclusives, and the foreshadowing of a surprise guest superstar who will reveal groundbreaking news!
Located at Booth #1802, Dynamite will be a flurry of activity with sixteen established industry veterans and up-and-coming talent greeting fans nearly every hour of the convention.
Garth Ennis (Preacher) will be on-hand to celebrate Red Team, his Dynamite follow-up after the thrilling conclusion to The Boys. Mark Waid (Daredevil) makes his Dynamite convention debut as the brainchild of the all-new, all-explosive Green Hornet, while Matt Wagner (Grendel) celebrates the launch of the revealing Shadow: Year One series. Superstar artist Jae Lee (Dark Tower) will be happily signing his ECCC convention exclusive of Masks #1, featuring pulp hero, The Spider.
Dynamite also happily welcomes Francesco Francavilla (The Shadow), Joe Harris (Vampirella), Ron Marz (Prophecy), Brandon Jerwa (Vampirella),Robert Napton (Dejah Thoris), Chris Roberson (Masks), Mark Rahner (Dejah Thoris), Brennan Wagner (The Shadow: Year One), Eric Trautmann (Flash Gordon), and Jim Zub (Pathfinder) to the booth. The signing times for all guests can be found below.
Dynamite Entertainment will also welcome a Mystery Superstar Creator to their booth to make a huge announcement, as they triumphantly unveil a bold new comic series revitalizing a classic comic character! Keep your ear to the ground on Friday, as the announcement goes live.
Three panels will be held on-site to celebrate Dynamite Entertainment and its superb creators. Two Spotlight events will be hosted by television sensation Blair Butler, providing revealing glimpses into the creative process of Garth Ennis and Jae Lee.
- “ECCC Spotlight Lounge Presents: Secret Origins with Garth Ennis” takes place on Saturday, 3/2, from 2:40pm – 3:35pm, in the Emerald City Spotlight Lounge, Room 604.
- “ECCC Spotlight Lounge Presents: Secret Origins with Jae Lee” takes place on Saturday, 3/2, from 3:40pm – 4:35pm, in the Emerald City Spotlight Lounge, Room 604.
- “Dynamite is Ready to Explode” takes place on Saturday, 3/2. It runs from 6:10pm – 7:05pm and will be held in Hall B, Room 608-610, and includes a whopping dozen creators, including Mark Waid, Ron Marz, Francesco Francavilla, our Surprise Mystery Guest, and more!
The Emerald City Comicon will feature fans’ first opportunity to pick up six spectacular exclusive variant comics, including the following:
The Shadow: Year One #1 Eccc “Emerald Green” Exclusive by Matt Wagner
Garth Ennis’ Red Team #1 Eccc “Emerald Green” Exclusive by Ryan Sook
Garth Ennis’ Red Team #1 Eccc “Black & White” Exclusive by Howard Chaykin
Dejah Thoris and the Green Men of Mars #1 “Emerald Green Risque” Exclusive by Mel Rubi
Dejah Thoris and the Green Men of Mars #1 “Emerald Green Risque” Exclusive by Ale Garza
Masks #1 Emerald City Comicon “Spider” Exclusive by Jae Lee
Dynamite has also produced four Limited Prints, available for free at Booth #1802. Two prints are designed to promote MARK WAID’S GREEN HORNET, so be sure to visit the booth during Waid’s scheduled signing time on Saturday between 2:00pm and 3:00pm, and get your prints signed! Dynamite’s other two prints are top secret, but can be signed throughout the weekend by the company’s Surprise Guest.
The complete signing schedule for all of Dynamite’s guests is:
Dynamite’s MYSTERY SUPERSTAR CREATOR, working on an Awesome, Top Secret Project!
- Friday, 2:00pm – 3:00pm
- Friday, 5:00pm – 6:00pm
- Saturday, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
- Sunday, 1:00pm – 3:30pm
GARTH ENNIS, writer of The Boys, Red Team, Battlefields, and The Shadow
- Saturday, 12:00pm – 2:00pm
- Saturday, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
- Sunday, 12:00pm – 2:00pm
- Sunday, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
FRANCESCO FRANCAVILLA, cover artist of The Shadow, The Spider, Dark Shadows, and Masks
- Saturday, 4:30pm – 5:30pm
JOE HARRIS, writer of Vampirella vs. Dracula
- Saturday, 5:00pm – 6:00pm
BRANDON JERWA, writer of Vampirella and Red Sonja
- Friday, 2:00pm – 4:00pm
- Saturday, 3:00pm – 4:30pm
- Sunday, 10:00am – 11:00am
- Sunday, 3:30pm – 5:00pm
JAE LEE, cover artist of Masks and Thun’da
- Friday, 3:00pm – 4:00pm
- Friday, 5:00pm – 7:00pm
- Saturday, 4:00pm – 7:00pm
- Sunday, 10:00am – 1:00pm
RON MARZ, writer of Prophecy
- Friday, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
- Saturday, 11:00am – 12:00pm
ROBERT NAPTON, writer of Warlord of Mars: Dejah Thoris
- Friday, 3:00pm – 4:00pm
- Saturday, 2:00pm – 4:00pm
MARK RAHNER, writer of Dejah Thoris and the Green Men of Mars
- Saturday, 3:00pm – 4:00pm
- Sunday, 1:00pm – 3:00pm
CHRIS ROBERSON, writer of Masks
- Friday, 2:00pm – 3:00pm
- Saturday, 1:00pm – 2:00pm
ERIC TRAUTMANN, writer of Flash Gordon and Red Sonja
- Friday, 4:00pm – 6:00pm
- Saturday, 10:00am – 12:00pm
- Sunday, 11:00am – 1:00pm
BRENNAN WAGNER, colorist of The Shadow: Year One
- Friday, 6:00pm – 7:00pm
- Saturday, 12:00pm – 1:00pm
MATT WAGNER, writer of The Shadow: Year One, Zorro, and Green Hornet: Year One
- Friday, 6:00pm – 7:00pm
- Saturday, 12:00pm – 1:00pm
MARK WAID, writer of Green Hornet
- Saturday, 2:00pm – 3:00pm
JIM ZUB, writer of Pathfinder
- Saturday, 11:00am – 12:00pm
- Sunday, 11:00am – 12:00pm
If you’re attending Emerald City Comicon in Seattle this coming weekend, make sure to visit Booth #1802 and join in on the festivities!
Gail Simone isn’t exclusive at DC any more. She’s picked up her first non-DC/Marvel title in a loooooong time in the form of a new Red Sonja series from Dynamite, set to launch in July.
Fiona Staple’s cover for the revamped Red Sonja
Walter Geovanni joins her as the (interior) artist. Geovanni’s done Red Sonja interiors in the past, but may be better known as a regular cover artist for the series. The covers? The cover rotation is going to female comics artists, so Nicola Scott, Colleen Doran, Jenny Frisson, Stephanie Buscema and Fiona Staples are all mentioned in the announcement.
What’s Simone planning on doing on Red Sonja? We asked her.
Q: Nick Barrucci is nothing, if not a persistent suitor. There are plenty of stories about him pursuing a creator for a couple years before a project happens. How long was he chasing you and how quickly did Red Sonja come together?
Gail: Nick is indeed a determined fellow! He’s asked about me doing projects in the past but was always very respectful of my DC exclusive, which I’ve had for something like eight straight years. The moment the story got out that my exclusive had ended, Nick was the very first person sending me an email, then LOTS of emails.
But I have to say, I am having a blast with Dynamite. Nick’s taken every possible step to make me feel welcome and it’s absolutely been lovely.
And then, of course, there’s getting to write the original redhead badass slayer!
Q: You worked with some traditional fantasy themes in Wonder Woman, how much of a jump is it going from fantasy adventure in a super hero(ine) setting to fantasy adventure in a more traditional fantasy setting?
Gail: Anyone following my work has probably seen that I love shoe-horning in fantasy and pulp elements into my superhero books. Catman was inspired by Tarzan, the Secret Six went to Skartaris, Wonder Woman met Beowulf and Claw. To be blunt, I love that stuff.
I love the earthy primal quality of it, I love the pulp mythos from people like Lovecraft and Burroughs, and of course, Robert E. Howard.
It seems to me that as we increasingly live in an age guided by tech that was science fiction just a couple decades ago, there’s something willfully punk about telling stories of people in loincloths with swords.
It’s just fun. I keep getting up to write pages at odd hours…because, you know, finally, I get to write this stuff with the genuine article, the best she-barbarian ever created.
Q: When your tenure starts, where will it fit in with Dynamite’s continuity for Red Sonja?
Gail: We start from a position of a clean page, all of that stuff is in her story, but we come at this as if people had never read Sonja at all.
I think Sonja is a character people want to love, but sometimes it feels the history can be daunting. This is very much Sonja coming up out of the fire right at your brain. You don’t need to research anything.
I want to also praise the art…we have some magnificent art in Walter Giovanni, he’s doing spectacular character work, I’m delighted with him. It feels like an artist who really cares about the detail.
And beyond that, we came up with a fun idea that the covers and variants would all be done by top female artists, almost all of whom turned out to be closet Sonja fans. We made a dream list and EVERYONE said they wanted in. I can’t wait for people to see these, they are RIDICULOUSLY gorgeous.
Q: What’s your long game for Red Sonja?
Gail: Really, I would like people to feel her humanity. Even in some of her best stories, Sonja herself can come off a little distant.
I think the fun thing to do with a slayer, a she-devil, is to put them in a situation that is ill-suited to their skills and see what happens. These are situations I don’t think anyone expects in a barbarian comic.
Other than that, epic battles, horrible diseases, flying leeches, arenas, war unicorns, stinky pirates, fish men, mouthy twins, unlikely suitors, bits of Sonja’s origin that we never knew, and a duck. AND the most badass nemesis Sonja’s had to face in ages.
Now I have to put a duck in there. I just liked the way it sounded.
Q: It’s been awhile since you’ve done non-DC work. Should we expect to see more of you at Dynamite than just Red Sonja?
Gail: Nick has made it very clear he’d love to have me do more work for Dynamite, and I’m having such a good time, it’s definitely a possibility. Lord knows I love that pulp stuff!
I hope people give this book a try. It is blood-red, funny, sexy, and sometimes very raw, but there’s some real heroism in it. It’s one of the all-time iconic heroines with a fresh spin. I can’t even explain how much FUN it is.
Just pick it up or I’m sending Red Sonja to your house.
That may actually be the most backfiring threat ever, know that I think about it. Who DOESN’T want Red Sonja to come to their house?
Official Announcement and covers follow:
GAIL SIMONE SIGNS WITH DYNAMITE!
SIMONE TO WRITE ONGOING RED SONJA SERIES!
March 1st, 2013, Mt. Laurel, NJ - Dynamite is delighted to announce that the one and only Gail Simone is taking on RED SONJA with a brand-new #1 issue launching this July – in time for San Diego Comic Con! Gail Simone – one of the premiere writers in the comics industry, is best known for DC’s Birds of Prey, Secret Six, and especially Batgirl! Walter Geovanni will join her, as the interior artist. Covers will be drawn by some of the top female artists in comics today! We are extremely fortunate to have Nicola Scott, Colleen Doran, Jenny Frisson, Stephanie Buscema, Fiona Staples on covers, with more high profile female cover artists to be announced! Fans will definitely want to pick up Gail Simone’s RED SONJA #1 this July!
To help kick off the celebration of Gail’s take on The She-Devil with a Sword, Dynamite is proud to give away, to all Emerald City fans, limited edition prints featuring art from the upcoming Nicola Scott covers! These limited edition, high-end prints are sure to be highly sought after collectibles, and are being given away to fans for free, as premium prints, to be signed by Gail herself at Emerald City Comic Con, to rev up for the launch in July!
“It’s like this…even most of the best female heroines when I was a kid were pretty polite. What I love about Sonja is that she isn’t polite, she says what she means and if you give her any lip about it, hello, sword in the gut. She’s smart, she has a heart, she has some compassion. But when it’s go time, she’s a hellraiser, a mad general, she’s a sword edge virtuosa, she’s death on wheels. She is the woman you never want to mess with. I can relate, Sonja. No offense to all her guy writers, but THIS Red Sonja is about sex and swords! It’s everything you love about Red Sonja, except with more monsters getting stabbed in the eye.”
“Words can’t even express how excited I am to have Gail Simone, one of the premiere writers in all of comics, write RED SONJA, a character she was born to work on. Fans will see in the first issue that she really cuts in to the heart of the character :-) ,” says Dynamite Entertainment CEO/Publisher Nick Barrucci. ”I have wanted to work with Gail for years, and it’s incredibly exciting that her first choice in working with us is Sonja. A strong-willed female with fiery red hair writing about a strong-willed female with fiery red hair – AND A SWORD! It is a dream come true that this project has finally come to fruition! Gail and Sonja’s will be the blades that cut the deepest to her enemies chagrin!”
Gail Simone got her start in comics writing for Bongo Comics, home of The Simpsons. Following her time there, Simone entered the mainstream comics world with a run on Marvel Comics’ Deadpool, and later, Agent X. Gail is best known for known for runs on DC’s Birds of Prey, Secret Six, Welcome to Tranquility, Wonder Woman, and Batgirl.
It’s almost time for the ”Dynamite is Ready to Explode” at the Emerald City con. We’ll be liveblogging it.
Get ready to start hitting refresh.
Our cast: Nick Barrucci, Matt Wagner, Gail Simone, Mark Waid, Brandon Jerwa, Robert Napton, Chris Robeson, Ron Marz, Mark Rahner, Francesco Francavilla and Eric Trautman.
Gail Simone is getting into the Red Sonja spirit by carrying around a sword.
Trautman is working on a Lady Rawhide book.
It took about 2 years to negotiate with the various rights holders to get the Masks crossover together.
Shadow: Year One is expanded to 10 issues.
Q: Will Red Sonja will have a humorous side?
A: Yes, but it Sonja won’t be the one cracking jokes.
Q: Where are Project Superpowers and Kirby: Genesis standing?
A: Right now Kirby: Genesis was hurt by two spin-offs, so it’s return is planned, but it’s a ways out. Barrucci is talking with 2 people on the panel about a new edition. The third edition needs to work or it will be time to shelf it.
“Super cool” Army of Darkness announcement for C2E2 or SDCC?
By: Mayra Calvani
Blog: Mayra's Secret Bookcase
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Mrs. Burgess worked as an elementary teacher and school counselor for a total of seven years. She has a Master’s Degree in Professional Counseling from Texas State University. Starr is busy working on her second children’s book: Counselor Dynamite Befuddles the Bullyville Crew. She currently resides with her husband, Clyde, and their daughter in Pflugerville, TX.
Thank you for this interview, Starr. Can you tell us a little about yourself and how long you’ve been writing?
I am a former elementary school teacher and school counselor. I live with my husband, Clyde, and our daughter in Pflugerville, TX. I have been working on writing books for five years and finally created the main character, Counselor Dynamite, whom I lovingly refer to as the pioneer super hero of schools.
Can you tell us briefly what your book is about? This book is about Counselor Dynamite, who is the superhero of schools. The story takes place the day before Christmas break. Teachers and staff members are tired and running low on patience and the students are full of unbridled energy. Counselor Dynamite notices that something is amiss and quickly jumps into action knowing that if something isn't done soon, students, teachers and staff will never be the same once chaos is unleashed. Why did you choose your particular genre?
I choose this genre because I worked as an elementary school counselor and had the wonderful opportunity to work with a diverse group of students. I learned that a lot of students had difficulty in the areas of conflict/resolution, problem solving, and boundaries. As a result I began writing stories that are amusing but instilled and reinforced positive character traits. I know that many children connect with and hold superheroes in high regard so I decided to create the first superhero of schools, Counselor Dynamite.
Where do you write? Do you have a favorite place?
I write in areas of my home where there is an abundance of natural light. My most favorite place to write is in my living room by the window.
What was your greatest challenge writing this book?
My greatest challenge was not in the writing of the book but in how to market the book.
Are you a disciplined writer?
I am somewhat of a disciplined writer, however most times I prefer the spontaneity of being in the moment.
Are you published by a traditional house, small press or are you self-published?
I am self-published.
Was it the right choice for you?
Absolutely! I appreciate the fact that I retain control of the creativity and direction of the writing and how Counselor Dynamite is portrayed.
How are you promoting your book thus far?
I am a vendor at the Texas Counseling Association conferences; I participate in author readings/book signings in book stores and private schools; I utilize social media such as Facebook and Twitter, and I work with an online book promotion company, Author & Book Promotions.
How is that going for you?
It’s going very well; I really enjoy meeting people with inspiring feedback and hearing about their ministry and journey.
Do you have another job besides writing?
Yes, I am a Licensed Professional Counselor. My private practice is LifeMenders Counseling.
Have you ever gotten an inspirational book-related moment at work and had to go run and write and it down?
No those moments usually come in the middle of the night.
Do your co-workers know they have a star among them? What has their reactions been? I don’t know if my co-workers think I’m necessarily a star but I do believe they think I am a visionary and a go getter. My colleagues have been a great source of support; they have given me words of encouragement, purchased my book and supplemental guide, and promotional products from my product line.
If you could give one book promotion tip to new authors, what would that be?
Utilize as much social media as possible, in addition to an online book promotion service company such as Author & Book Promotion.
My next book will focus on bullying and will be available in the fall along with a supplemental guide which contains lessons plans and activities for children. In the near future I will be publishing more Counselor Dynamite books, I would love to go on a book tour, be a regular on a talk and/or radio show discussing challenges children face and parent resources, and eventually partner with companies and build the Counselor Dynamite brand, maybe one day turning the adventures of Counselor Dynamite into a cartoon for children.
By Todd Allen
There are some comics that really should have digital editions. American Flagg! is a 15 minutes into the future classic of dystopian (not _quite_ cyberpunk) science fiction that put Howard Chaykin into the spotlight with First Comics in the early 1980s it’s one of them. A political satire featuring military industrial complex taking over, cable television influencing political views, the outlawing of sports (leading to an underground basketball league), a talking cat,some Nazis, and a fair amount of sex, Flagg! is a hugely influential book.
Flagg! is about to be released as digital editions over Comixology. Both as single issues and as a digital tpb containing the first 12 issues. Warren Ellis is doing an introduction for the series. A bit of advice: Flagg! is something you probably want to read in chunks. If you’re interested in sampling this, get issues #1-#3 (the “Hard Times” arc) and read it in one sitting. I can’t fathom reading Flagg! in single issue installments.
Scroll down past the PR and you’ll find a whopping 14 page preview. And no, your eyes are not deceiving you: that really says “Mark Thrust Sexus Ranger.”
CHAYKIN’S SEMINAL AMERICAN FLAGG FINALLY AVAILABLE DIGITALLY ON COMIXOLOGY
INCLUDES AN EXCLUSIVE FORWARD BY WARREN ELLIS
June 6th, 2012 – New York, New York - Dynamite Entertainment and comiXology have teamed up to release legendary comic creator Howard Chaykin’s classic American Flagg! digitally across the entire comiXology platform – including iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire andthe Web. Long considered a classic, this digital release also includes a brand new forward by bestselling comic creator and novelist Warren Ellis – available on comiXology. The forward, along with first arc of the American Flagg series marks the beginning of a new era for this groundbreaking masterpiece as it moves into the digital age.
“Bringing the work of a master creator like Howard Chaykin to the forefront of the digital realm defines what comiXology is at it’s very core” says comiXology CEO and Co-Founder David Steinberger “
By Todd Allen
I learned something new today. Remember how Watchmen started out as a treatment for the Charlton characters DC had purchased? Come to find out out, DC didn’t purchase the rights to all the Charlton characters and Dynamite now has the rights to Peter Cannon/Thunderbolt. As in, the prototype for Watchmen’s Ozymandias.
It seems that Pete Morisi, who created the character, had merely leased the rights to DC. Dynamite has licensed the character from the Morisi family and the book is set to debut in September. The writing team will be Alex Ross and Steve Darnall. You might remember that Ross and Darnell collaborated on Uncle Sam, many moons ago. (Personally, I was always fond of Darnall’s mid-90s Empty Love Stories.) Art will be by Jonathan Lau.
This isn’t the first post-Watchmen Morisi character revival. Back in the ’90s, Max Allan Collins and Terry Beatty revived Morisi’s private detective character “Johnny Dynamite” for a horror-tinged mini-series at Dark Horse.
While not exactly a household name these days, Morisi does have a cult following among artists. The first issue of the Dynamite revival will include a previously unpublished Morisi origin story for Peter Cannon, so you can get a good look at his work. Mark Waid is also tagging along to write a forward to the comic.
Official PR follows, plus come covers and interior art.
THERE WAS PETER CANNON!!!
June 13th, 2012 – Mount Laurel, NJ - Dynamite proudly presents - Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt returns to comics this coming September! Peter Cannon was created by the late Pete Morisi. Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #1 is written by Steve Darnall and Alex Ross, drawn by superstar artist Jonathan Lau, with covers by Alex Ross, Jae Lee, John Cassaday, and Ardian Syaf!
In Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #1, Peter Cannon is a world-famous author, an international celebrity, and the superhero known as Thunderbolt. He is acknowledged far and wide as the man who saved the world from destruction. Unfortunately, he has little interest in fame, even less interest in people, and the peace he has created is based on an illusion. Now, as old and new enemies plan to destroy his efforts-unaware of the secret he carries-Peter Cannon must fight to keep the peace and preserve his own existence, while fending off deadly foes…and mysterious admirers.
Issue #1 also contains extra material – Peter Cannon’s never before published origin story by Peter Cannon creator, Pete Morisi for a total of 48 pages all for the regular price of $3.99! This issue is soooo big, it features a forward by Mark (Kingdom Come) Waid!
“I have a great sentimentality for all of the Silver Age heroes,” says Alex Ross. “Peter Cannon belongs to that age of the heroic pantheon, and we have the chance to use him,
By Todd Allen
Back in the 90s, Evil Ernie was hot book for awhile. Brian Pulido and Stephen Hughes had a popular run with the Chaos! Comics imprint, which also featured Lady Death (yes, that was when Bad Girls were at their peak). Dynamite acquired most of the Chaos! intellectual property, back in 2010 (Lady Death is over at Avatar). This looks to be the first book to come out from that IP family.
Writing it is Jesse Blaze Snyder. Yes, you metal head, that’s Dee Snyder’s son. Snyder’s been writing comics for awhile. Want a contrast in titles? He’s written both Dead Romeo and Toy Story.
Artist Jason Craig drew Freddy Vs. Jason Vs. Ash for Wildstorm and… yeah, that does sound ballpark for Evil Ernie, doesn’t it?
Official PR, followed by some art:
DYNAMITE ANNOUNCES EVIL ERNIE CREATIVE TEAM!
IN COMIC STORES EVERYWHERE OCTOBER 2012!
July 12th, 2012, Mt. Laurel, NJ – Dynamite Entertainment is proud to announce the classic Chaos! character Evil Ernie returns to comics from the creative team of writer Jesse Blaze Snider and artist Jason Craig! In the world of Evil Ernie, an eternal conflict has existed for all time, a war between good and evil, Heaven and Hell, God and the Devil. And with Ardian Syaf, Nick Bradshaw, Tim Seeley, and Dan Brereton on covers, make sure to jump on board Evil Ernie for this wickedly-wild ride this coming October 2012!
In Evil Ernie #1, Ernest Fairchild was a kind and gentle soul…until one day something in him snapped, leading him to one of the most notorious killing sprees in American history. With 665 kills to his name, “Evil Ernie” requires ONE more murder to complete the ritual he started and seal his deal with the Devil. Problem is: he’s just been EXECUTED! What led an ordinary boy to become a leather-clad angel of death? How does he wield such blasphemous power? And what is the secret behind his hideous smiley-face button? Make sure to pick up Part One of “Origin of Evil” in Evil Ernie #1 this October!
“It’s pretty surreal to be working on Evil Ernie,” says writer Jesse Blaze Snider. ”We’re definitely staying true to the spirit of the character, but those who want a little more substance from your Heaven & Hell opus are going to be surprised by the powerful concepts and ideas that serve as the bedrock of this new series…and this new Chaos Universe.”
“It was pretty clear from our first meeting with him, that Jesse would have done ANYTHING to write this book; and that kind of passion and dedication – along with his writing chops, of course – go a long way to making this one of our most anticipated launches later this year,” says Dynamite Editor Joe Rybandt. ”Evil lives in 2012!”
“With Dynamite’s Chaos! characters, we are in possession of some of the most frightening horror characters in comic book history,” adds Dynamite President and Publisher Nick Barrucci. ”Evil Ernie is possibly being the most iconic of the Chaos! characters!”
Evil Ernie is the fruit of Hell’s labor: A psychopath hell-bent on riding the world of the evil that twisted his soul, never knowing that his killing spree is actually a recruitment drive for Hell’s armies that will quickly bring us to the brink of Armageddon! Though he thinks that he is doing “good” Ernie is actually performing the greatest evil.
Jesse Blaze Snider is a comic book writer, voice over actor,
By Todd Allen
OK, I admit it. That cover graphic of all the super heroes going straight down the toilet cracks me up. It’s also symbolic of The Boys. As the title ends in November, it is worth noting its strange journey.
The Boys is an off-color, if not outright profane, piss-take on super heroes, corporate America and the industrial-military complex’s incursions into politics. Sometimes it’s more serious than others, but Garth Ennis shows off his dark sense of humor. Regular readers may recall some amorous green monkeys, a beard made of blood and the phrase “if it has a hole…”
I probably can’t get much further than that without going far into NSFW territory. That’s just the kind of comic it’s been.
The Boys started out at Wildstorm. It was selling well for Wildstorm, but DC’s Publisher at the time, Paul Levitz, didn’t care for having that kind of raunchy material directed towards super heroes under DC’s banner (Wildstorm being a sub-imprint). DC was surprisingly cool about letting The Boys switch publishers. It landed at Dynamite and it quickly became apparent that Ennis had been toning it down a little at Wildstorm. You wouldn’t have realized it until your started the Dynamite issues, though.
The Boys was arguably the highest profile creator-owned comic for a while, especially in it’s early years, when it was selling over 30K for awhile. The sales have drifted down, with some of the inevitable shift to tpbs that long-running serials have, but as Ennis notes below, if you add in the varies companion mini’s, The Boys ran 90 issues, which is a good long run for an independent comic. Actually, that’s a pretty decent run for a corporate comic, too.
Official PR follows:
THE BOYS CONCLUDES WITH ISSUE #72 THIS NOVEMBER!!!
THE END OF AN ERA!!!
August 16, 2012, Runnemede, NJ – It’s an end of an era this coming November, as The Boys conclude their historic run with issue #72! The Boys has been one of the most critically acclaimed books on the shelves, but writer Garth Ennis always intended for the series to be finite and issue #72 is his final statement on The Boys! Look for it this November!!!
In The Boys #72, the long day closes on the Brooklyn Bridge, as our hero finally meets his destiny. There’s one last deal to be done, As Stillwell finds out the real cost of doing business, and one last surprise for Rayner too- as she begins her long-dreamed of political career. The Boys’ story comes to an end in this final issue containing 24 pages of story, 5 pin-up pages of brand-new art as well as a complete cover gallery!!!
“Seventy-two issues plus three minis adds up to ninety issues, making this a very busy six years – more than six years, of course, because we very nearly didn’t make it,” says writer Garth Ennis. ”But all’s well that ends well. I finished #72 well over a year before it’s due to see print, and I’ve been missing Butcher and Hughie ever since. Goodbye, B
By: Heidi MacDonald
Blog: PW -The Beat
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, chris roberson
, Katie Cook
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, Peter Milligan
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This week saw a number of big comic releases from Marvel and DC, but who cares when this was the week My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #1 came out? PONIES, you guys! Ponies all over the place.
This week I’ll be reviewing My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #1, Hellblazer #297, Gambit #6 and Masks #1
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic is the unexpected mass-market hit cartoon series which came out of nowhere to hit every demographic. The series grew such a strong fanbase, in fact, that pre-orders for this spin-off comic series went ballistic, and Katie Cook and Andy Price were left with a smash hit before anybody read a word or saw a single hoof. Issue #1 of IDW’s series doesn’t pay much lip service to new fans, instead asking them to immediately catch up on a fast-paced opening story which races around a large cast of diverse and well-characterised ponies at breakneck speed. Jokes and puns and visual gags fly out from all angles, with almost every one landing. And amazingly, the creative team manage to make the book accessible without pausing to explain anything about the world the characters live in.
Cook is primarily a great humorist, and her voice for the book is immediately charming and entertaining. Whilst it’s hard for this “no-ny” (I knew nothing of the series before reading this book) to know how well she matches or moves away from the voice of the cartoon, I was pretty struck by Cook’s ability to string along an endless succession of gags whilst retaining exposition and story. She’s matched by lovely art from Andy Price, who refuses to draw stock figures from the cartoon and instead invests his own sense of life into the various galloping protagonists. His use of layout is rather spectacular, with thought given to how the panels stand alongside each other and progress the story. This isn’t spectacle for the sake of spectacle, but rather an intelligent use of page space and structure.
A lot of people were very very upset when DC recently announced the cancellation of Hellblazer, but let’s celebrate what we have left – three more issues – rather than mourn a book we might not actually read. Hellblazer has been in the hands of creative team Peter Milligan, Giuseppi Camuncoli and Brian Buccellato for a while now, although this issue is finished by Stefano Landini. The most recent issue concludes the ‘Curse of the Constantines’ storyline, which seems to finish off a number of Milligan’s dangling plot threads regarding Constantine’s family, especially his sister. Being from Liverpool himself, Milligan has proven to be one of the best Constantine writers since also-Scouse Mike Carey, with both being able to effortlessly write lines for the character which are both authentic and very, very funny.
With this being the last of a five-issue storyline, Camuncoli’s art is flagging a little here. Although he takes care to distinctively shape the big moments and standout sequences, some of the pages feature scratchier art which Buccellato can’t do much with. The story here does feature a little bit of a Milligan anticlimax, something the writer sometimes falls prey to. Whilst Constantine’s plan to save the day is funny, it is very slight indeed, and requires a leap of characterisation for the Eva Brady character. Regardless, the grasp on dialogue is spot-on and more than enough to carry the day here, setting Constantine up for a final storyline which gives him a fresh break from the past, and leaves the future unpredictable and exciting for the character.
James Asmus‘ Gambit series has been growing in confidence after a strong opening issue turned into a slightly wobbly first storyline. Each issue of the book has featured some kind of heist, and it’s to Asmus’ credit that heist 6 feels just as unpredictable as heist 1. We’re now in the middle of a storyline where the thief finds himself forced to steal from Pete Wisdom and the British MI13 team (although only Faiza Hussain also appears in the storyline so far). Asmus does light-hearted thrills nicely, although the artwork here seems to be a classic case of a Marvel title getting rushed by scheduling. Diogenes Neves is capable of better work when he isn’t under the pressure he seems to be under here, and indeed he shares art duties here with Al Barrionuevo after only one issue by himself.
It’s a shame that Marvel have recently taken to battering their artists with tighter and tighter deadlines, as it’s led to a rise of fill-ins and rushed pages. There’s a splash page here where we see the insides of MI13′s armoury, a page which was clearly intended to be filled with detail and exciting. However, it looks bare, with a few guns and bits of scrap metal lying around. Give Neves time to draw this page, I bet he’d have made it something exciting to look at. Without that time, his page does a disservice to Asmus’ story.
However, Asmus does seem to be rapidly building his world for the book, with a rising cast and some nice character moments for the main character. He doesn’t write anyone as an idiot in order to make somebody else look good – Pete Wisdom, Faiza Hussain, Gambit and Cich are all juggled nicely between each other here. The Gambit character has also benefited hugely from the retooling Asmus has given him, with a better direction, personality and motivation than he’s had in a decade. The best sequences in the issue are the ones with Gambit in them, as the focus, and that’s because Asmus has done such a great job of making the character exciting to be with again.
It appears that the pre-sales for Dynamite’s team-up book Masks have been stonking, and a massive success for the company. Written by Chris Roberson and with this first issue painted by Alex Ross, the series teams up Zorro, The Spider, The Shadow and The Green Hornet for a pulp nostalgia trip. Being somewhat unfamiliar with all the characters, this first issue left me a little confused, but with a sense that Roberson is heading somewhere good. Green Hornet provides the perspective for readers, as we follow him interact with first The Shadow, and then the rest of the heroes. I’m not entirely certain what Zorro’s role in the book is at present – he might have appeared, but I really can’t tell if that was him or not. The introduction of The Spider is also blatantly tacked on, albeit in a hilariously camp manner that I couldn’t help but enjoy. Roberson seems to be having a lot of fun here, and Ross is clearly having a ball.
Roberson allows for the reader to view the story as a camp homage just as much as he writes a pulp narrative, here, balancing the two different styles neatly. The story is simultaneously involving and completely ridiculous nonsense, but in the most enjoyable manner possible. He also makes sure to write for Ross, whose painted pages are far less static than you might expect. The fight scene towards the end is a particularly well-done sequence from the pair, while the conversation sequences aren’t overshadowed by dead-eyed staring from everybody involved – as can be the case for painted work. Ross reminds that he’s an excellent storyteller as well as painter with this issue, and it’ll be interesting to see how the story progresses beyond here. It’s a qualified success, in that it’ll play far better to fans who already love and know the characters than it will bring in and keep new readers.
– As a final note! Let’s take a moment to praise letterer Cory Petit, who is currently working on X-Men Legacy. This is a book with a myriad things happening in the word balloons, and Petit’s ability to juggle it all is pretty incredible. It’s probably one of the most demanding comics I’ve seen, and he manages to take everything Si Spurrier throws at him — and make it work.
By: Heidi MacDonald
Blog: PW -The Beat
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, Leah Moore
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We’re currently in the midst of a long-running Sherlock Holmes media explosion, from the Guy Ritchie films starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law, to the hit BBC series SHERLOCK, and the American approach ELEMENTARY, however comics have plenty to add to the Holmes mythology, and Leah Moore and John Reppion are poised to release a new arc of their series SHERLOCK HOLMES this Wednesday, December 12, with “The Liverpool Demon” #1 from Dynamite Entertainment. The comics medium may even prove to be a more satisfying approach to the great detective, with its ability to conjure mood, give detailed characterization, and draw on the literary traditions established by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
“The Liverpool Demon” takes Holmes and Watson out of their more familiar London setting, and challenges the duo to prove their salt on new turf. Their initial task, to track down a murderess who’s stealing identities from her victims, gives readers a chance to see Holmes and Watson in action, complete with gun fights and street brawls. Illustration by Matt Triano is heavy in atmosphere, rife with historical detail, and takes a fresh look at the grittier aspects of the Victorian period, often all too romanticized in films and comics alike. Moore and Reppion focus on Holmes characterization that’s bound to satisfy knowledgeable fans, bringing in nuance and continuity with Doyle’s original portrayal of the character. When Holmes is knifed with a nasty Spanish blade by the struggling murderess, he pauses to comment on the make and workmanship of the blade rather than attending to the gash he receives: this is classic Holmes, with his brain continuing to process information in contrast to any more basic human needs.
Unlike the original Holmes stories, however, “Liverpool Demon” allows readers to view events happening outside the perspective of Holmes and Watson, laying clues for the reader to assemble in the developing plot. This often highlights social factors, like violent conflict between the police and lower classes, and introduces lesser characters who appear later in the story. This essentially gives the reader a jump on Holmes, and the chance to grasp the challenges Holmes is up against before we see him in action. When a conversation between Holmes, Watson, and some colleagues turns to the supernatural, readers get a chance to hear Holmes’ circumspect thoughts on the matter, thoughts which become a major theme for the “Liverpool Demon” arc: what “seems inexplicable” is deemed “supernatural”, but for Holmes, the “impossibly is merely a diversion from the real facts”. But what will Holmes make of a visible, fiery-eyed and leaping figure striking dread into city inhabitants? His reaction, intriguingly, is to rush toward the unknown. When Watson asks Holmes if he actually saw the creature with his own eyes, his only answer is “perhaps”. He, of course, wants more “data”.
“The Liverpool Demon” #1 creates a finely balanced introduction to a storyline that promises to pit Sherlock Holmes against something that even he isn’t sure he believes exists. For those who love the Doyle Hound of the Baskervilles novella, this story takes scientific inquiry into the supernatural one step futher. Hardly “elementary” stuff. The pacing of the story is solid, with an excellent attention to visual detail, a careful consideration of historicity, and, perhaps most importantly, it creates a driving sense of curiosity that keeps readers, like Holmes, in pursuit of the truth.
Leah Moore and John Reppion have provided the Beat with some exclusive insights into their work on SHERLOCK HOLMES, and “The Liverpool Demon”, as well as some hints of things to come.
HM-S: Sherlock Holmes has become such a multi-media figure over time from the original stories to TV, films, and comics. What elements of Sherlock Holmes tradition have influenced you the most?
Leah Moore &John Reppion: We’ve tried to stick as close as possible to Conan Doyle’s original stories in terms of the era, settings, and characters of our own Holmes stories. We both really love the BBC Sherlock series and thought the Guy Richie films where really good fun but we wanted to bring the classic Victorian Holmes and Watson back to life on the comic book page.
HM-S: Have you always been big Sherlock fans? What makes you particularly want to work on a project like this?
LM&JR: Prior to working on The Trial of Sherlock Holmes back in 2009 neither of us would have categorized ourselves as Holmes fans really. As it turned out though, we were both much more familiar with The Great Detective’s work than we’d imagined. As well as having each read a smattering of Holmes’ adventures, we’d both seen much of the wonderful British ITV television series and listened to many a radio adaptation. We’d just finished work on The Complete Dracula when the opportunity to write The Trial came up, so we were already steeped in Victorian research. Les Klinger’s New Annotated Dracula was an invaluable resource for the Stoker adaptation and his Annotated Sherlock Holmes proved no less so for The Trial. I certainly wouldn’t class us as Victorian experts, or Holmes experts but we’re “enthusiastic amateurs” who have amassed a really good lot of reference material.
HM-S: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle had a strong interest in the occult, didn’t he? What do you think it is about the original Holmes stories that lends itself to bringing in “weird tales” elements and the supernatural?
LM&JR: Doyle was a Spiritualist, a member of The Ghost Club (the oldest extant paranormal investigation group in the world), a believer in fairies, and notoriously fell out with his friend Harry Houdini because he refused to believe that the magician did not possess genuine powers. Holmes on the other hand is about the most skeptical character that one can imagine. Perhaps that’s why Doyle got so fed up of writing him that he decided to kill him off – maybe Holmes’ ability to see through even the weirdest and most unlikely of circumstances to the cold hard facts began to grate on him?
The weird, the supernatural, the Gothic; it’s all there in tales such as The Hound of the Baskervilles, and The Sussex Vampire but Holmes always cuts through all the atmosphere and sees the naked crime at the heart of it. In this first issue of The Liverpool Demon we’ve come at this idea head on, giving The Great Detective a nice little speech on the matter:
“That which seems inexplicable, supernatural… that is my business, sir. And I have never yet met either wizard, demon, or ghoul. The impossible is merely a diversion from the real facts”.
HM-S: The art style and color palette of “Demon” really depicts the gritty reality of life in the Victorian period, and there’s a strong emphasis on violent conflict. Did you have a particular goal in working against the romantic views people often have of the period?
LM&JR: Our first Holmes series was set in London and dealt with royalty, government, and politics. There was a bit of down and dirty poor London in there but it was still very much the accepted and expected London setting of many a Holmes tale. With this second series we wanted to take both Holmes and the reader out of the that London comfort zone and make things a lot grittier and dirtier and generally more hostile. We want it to be a tense, scary place and Victorian London sometimes feels too overdone, too familiar, to be genuinely menacing.
Matt Triano is doing a fantastic job of rendering Victorian Liverpool despite having never been here. Lots of the buildings and locations featured in the story are still extant and pretty much unchanged so it’s fun to see these familiar (to us) places crop up on the page.
HM-S: Any hints or teasers for audiences about what they can expect from the rest of the series?
LM&JR: Well, in the best British tradition, once the newspapers get hold of the demon story there’s bound to be a bit of a panic… who knows what might happen next…
Also, readers (and Holmes) can look forward to meeting Thornton – a no nonsense Irish copper whose on a one man mission to clean up the mean streets of Liverpool.
HM-S: What other projects are you all currently working on?
Damsels, our Dynamite Entertainment ongoing, is currently on its third issue with number four coming out in the first week of the new year. Damsels is a fairy tale/fantasy series in which we get to play with all the established characters and stories of the entire folk/fairy tale world and put our own twist on them. We’re following Rapa – a dread-locked, tattooed, wanderer – as she tries to piece together her own story whilst trying to contend with all manner of monsters and people who seem to want to get in her way. It’s great fun to write and people seem to be really enjoying it. Aneke, our artist, manages to create such wonderful, bouncy, art without ever overstepping the mark into full on Disneyness.
HM-S: Thanks, Leah and John, for feeding my own personal Sherlock Holmes addiction in such a compelling way and taking the time to discuss SHERLOCK HOLMES: “The Liverpool Demon”.
Hannah Means-Shannon writes and blogs about comics for TRIP CITY and Sequart.org and is currently working on books about Neil Gaiman and Alan Moore for Sequart. She is @hannahmenzies on Twitter and hannahmenziesblog on WordPress.
TweetIntroducing the best crime-fighting comic on the shelves right now: The Spider. No, not that Spider, but this one from Dynamite Entertainment that you quite possibly haven’t been reading. But fear not! The first trade collection has just been released, making this a handy time to catch up and enjoy the first 6 issues in one delicious [...]
TweetThe Black Bat was one of the early character pulps from the 1930s, along with The Shadow and The Spider. Like those last 2 pulps, The Black Bat is getting a comics revival over at Dynamite. Brian Buccellato (co-writer on The Flash) is writing it. Roman Cliquet, who recently drew The Shadow Special #1 for Dynamite is the artist. In the [...]
By Todd Allen
One of the questions you ask when you hear about a new Shadow comic is “what kind of take are they doing?” Another is “how serious will it be?” And then there’s “how faithful is it to the source material?” As it happens, I’ve had a chance to read the script for The Shadow #1. I can’t speak to Aaron Campbell’s art — I haven’t seen that yet. I can, however, tell you what the tone and the take are going to be.
Since The Shadow is a property that dates back to the early 1930s and has it’s share of die hard fans and purists, let me be upfront on my bonafides. I’m a casual Shadow reader. I’ve read somewhere between 10 and 20 of the original pulp novels. I’ve heard several of the radio shows. I’ve read… call it 70% of the comics since DC’s ’70s revival. I’m probably going to lose a trivia contest badly, but I’m familiar with the character in a few different flavors.
The flavor here is a _slight_ modification of the original pulp. The Shadow is one of those characters where the collective memory is a little different than the source material. In the original pulps, The Shadow would occasionally indulge in some hypnosis, but most of the supernatural elements were around his edges. He might have had paranormal abilities, he might not have. Some of the villains most definitely were supernatural in nature and those weirder capers seem to color the memory.
Ennis is bringing that mystic edge to the surface in a way I don’t recall from the pulps I’ve read. Without getting into spoilers, he knows a little bit more about the future and it doesn’t appear to be deductive or inductive reasoning. You also see… another use for that famous girasol ring.
The Ennis Shadow might be a little more aloof than the pulp version and certainly likes messing with people. Which is not to say the original didn’t, but there might be a hair more attitude here. Then again, Ennis always has had a good time with the Magnificent Bastard trope and it has it’s place with the character.
In terms of cast of characters, Shrevy and Margo Lane pop up in issue one. Harry Vincent is name-checked. So, the Shadow’s operatives appear to be live and well. Margo Lane, who was written into the pulps after being introduced as the girlfriend on the radio show seems to have a… complicated relationship with The Shadow in the version. The Shadow appears as Lamont Cranston… although the many identities of the Shadow may not be something you want to get anywhere near in a first issue. (For those not familiar with the character, the Shadow had more identities than Moon Knight and Lamont Cranston was a borrowed identity in the pulps, if not the radio show.)
As to the script, itself, The Shadow #1 is setting the table. We see the Shadow in action, we meet some of the main characters. We get ready to start a quest. Yellow peril was a staple of the Shadow pulp novels and the Japanese army, or at least part of their Intelligence division is being set up as the villains here… assuming all is as it seems, which may not
By: Heidi MacDonald
Blog: PW -The Beat
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Got kids? Nieces? Nephews? Students? Or just love reading something fun and not too heavy-handed? Here are some new titles you might enjoy!
(But first, the serious boilerplate:)
So, here’s what caught my eye. Please comment below, and please feel free to mention titles I may have marginalized or overlooked. My tastes are eclectic, but there’s stuff which doesn’t interest me, or doesn’t evoke much of a response. I respect everyone who manages to publish something, but with some 400 graphic novel titles a month, I have to be selective.
CAVEAT: As I discovered while doing the publisher posts, that some titles have been canceled or postponed. The titles below, the information is subject to change. Some may already be out and on sale, some may be vaporous. Covers and text are supplied by the publishers.
Oh, and the advisory: I am employed as a bookseller. Nothing I say here or anywhere else online has any connection to my employer. I know my employer can take umbrage at any association people may make between my private and professional activities, so I’m careful to let Lions Mane Jellyfish be.
Betty & Veronica: Best Friends Forever
Trade paperback, $9.99
Author Bio: Dan Parent (born 1964 in St. Albans, Vermont) is an American comic book artist and writer best known for his work for Archie Comics. A graduate of the Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art, Parent began working for Archie immediately after graduation. His writing of the Love Showdown series from 1994 received widespread attention. Parent has also illustrated Felix the Cat, Barbie, Disney Adventures, and a wide variety of other titles.
Summary: Betty & Veronica’s very first full-length graphic novel story is another major step forward for the Archie book line! A follow-up to the successful full color Betty & Veronica: Storybook graphic novel collection of fun fairy-tale sendups—Best Friends Forever should continue to gain ground with girls in bookstores and libraries.
Features an engaging story celebrating the power of friendship featuring the most famous BFFs in all of comics in an all-out reality show friendship competition!
Hades: Lord of the Dead
Author Bio: GEORGE O’CONNOR is the author of several picture b
By Todd Allen
You may have noticed the Warlord of Mars, Fall of Barsoom tpb was in stores today. Maybe you’d like to read the first issue and see if you like it?