Thursday, December 18, 2014

UDON Entertainment Announces Capcom Fighting Tribute Art Initiative

If Capcom knows anything, it's fighting games. The publisher has put out countless iterations of games that have become immensely popular and iconic in the genre. Fans of those games have proven just as devoted to mastering them as Capcom is to making them perfect and now those fans have the chance to show the world their passion and raw talent once again, as UDON today announces the latest entry in their line of tribute art books in Capcom Fighting Tribute. UDON is calling on professional and fan artists around the world to knock our socks off with your best artistic tributes to the iconic characters of beloved Capcom fighting and beat ‘em up series like Street Fighter, Final Fight, Power Stone, Captain Commando, Star Gladiator and Battle Circuit and for the hardcore fans who really know your lore, original Capcom characters like Ruby Heart and Amingo are also fair game.

“The 1990s were a Golden Age that saw the release of many peerless fighting games, and some of the best Capcom artwork also comes from that special time,” said Matt Moylan, UDON’s Managing Editor. “Capcom Fighting Tribute will be an exhaustive homage to the great games and amazing artwork of that era, and with so many featured properties, we expect this to be our biggest and most diverse Tribute project yet!”

The full list of franchises eligible for inclusion in Capcom Fighting Tribute includes Street Fighter, Darkstalkers, Rival Schools, Red Earth, Star Gladiator, Power Stone, Cyberbots, Capcom Fighting Evolution, Puzzle Evolution, Puzzle Fighter, Pocket Fighter, Final Fight, Battle Circuit, Captain Commando, Armored Warriors, Knights of the Round, The King of the Dragons, Avengers (Hissatsu no Buraiken) and Capcom original characters Ruby Heart, Son-Son, and Amingo. The best and most unique pieces of art UDON receives will be included in Capcom Fighting Tribute, which will debut with a gorgeous, exclusive 300-page hardcover edition at San Diego Comic-Con 2015.

In the spirit of covering such a diverse range of Capcom characters and series, UDON is looking for just as wide a variety in art submissions. Group shots, single-character images, and crossovers between available properties are just a few of the kinds of tribute art UDON is excited to receive from professionals and fans. All submissions must be received on or after December 17, 2014 and no later than January 31, 2015 to be considered eligible for inclusion in Capcom Fighting Tribute. For full Capcom Fighting Tribute submission details, head to:

Full press release below.

Review - Rumble #1

"What color of darkness that makes blind the eyes of a caring God?"

Heroes come in all shapes sizes, which is something that can also be said of demons. The conflict between the two is often storied and epic, with few instances of either side relenting easily. That might not true when it comes to Bobby in Rumble #1 from Image Comics; a bartended with a brand new weapon and a lot of people after it. The issue is written by John Arcudi, illustrated by James Harren, colored by Dave Stewart and lettered by Chris Eliopoulos.

New BOOM! Series Burning Fields Delves Beneath Kirkuk

BURNING FIELDS #1 Cover A by Colin Lorimer

Curse has earned all the critical acclaims as it were, giving BOOM! Studios yet another solid book to count among its titles. The team of Michael Moreci, Tim Daniel and Colin Lorimer has put together a solid series that shows good things when the three of them come together. BOOM! Studios realized that as well, grouping them together for a brand new series called Burning Fields.

“Michael, Tim, and Colin are proving to be an unstoppable force of creativity, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to have them back with another new twist on horror,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “They showed with Curse that they’re capable of delivering razor sharp, character-driven genre stories that are complex and gripping. Just wait until you see what terrors they’re digging up in Burning Fields.”

Dana Atkinson, a dishonorably discharged army investigator, is pulled back to the Middle East when a group of American oil technicians disappear under bizarre circumstances. With the help of an Iraqi investigator, what Dana discovers is unimaginable: a series of unusual incidents at the drill site lead her and her unlikely ally to discover a mythic evil that has been released, one that threatens both the lives of the entire region and the fragile peace that exists.

Burning Fields #1 arrives in comic book shops on January 21st with a cover price of $3.99 under Diamond order code NOV141067. The issue ships with a main cover by series artist Colin Lorimer, a 10 Years variant cover by Trevor Hairsine and a retailer incentive cover by Riley Rossmo. The Final Order Cutoff deadline for retailers is December 29th. Full press release below.

Dynamite Entertainment Announces Lady Rawhide/Lady Zorro Crossover

The wild, wild west was just that: wild. It was tough on everyone and criminals typically had a free run of the place with very few willing to stand up to them. Things were even tougher for women, so finding any women who had the ability to step up was pretty rare as well. Lady Rawhide and Lady Zorro aren't like other women, but they are willing to step up and stop the bad guys. And they get their chance in Lady Rawhide/Lady Zorro #1 from Dynamite Entertainment March 2015. Written by Shannon Eric Denton and featuring interior artwork by Rey Villegas, Lady Rawhide/Lady Zorro #1 features cover artwork by Lady Rawhide co-creator, Mike Mayhew.

Denton says, "Women were a huge part in the settlement of the Old West but are often overlooked in the historical context. With characters like Lady Rawhide and Lady Zorro, they don't let you overlook them. They're two powerful characters with equally powerful personalities that tamed what is now Southern California. As a current Los Angeleno, I couldn't be happier to contribute to their mythology and the mythology of this part of California."

In Lady Rawhide/Lady Zorro #1, the two female vigilantes must live up to the legend of Zorro after the inspirational hero is murdered! When brutal slavers descend upon a village and steal away all its adolescent girls, Lady Zorro and Lady Rawhide - who would sooner ride alone than ride together - must put aside their ideological and methodical differences to free the missing girls from a fate worse than death.

Lady Rawhide (along with her alter-ego Anita Santiago) was introduced into the Zorro mythos by writer Don McGregor and Mayhew in 1994, a masked vigilante skilled with swords, guns, and her signature bullwhip. Driven to avenge her brother's suffering at the hands of a crooked government, she first had an antagonistic relationship with Zorro, but eventually became his confidante and staunch ally. Lady Rawhide's popularity as a Zorro regular grew, leading to her headlining several Lady Rawhide comic series. Lady Zorro is a more recent addition to the Zorro mythos, created in 2012 as a strong supporting cast member of the Zorro Rides Again series by Matt Wagner and John K Snyder III. Seeking vengeance after her husband was murdered by corrupt government officials, Lady Zorro cut a bloody swath across the countryside until the elder swordfighter calmed her rage. The character appeared in a successful 2014 self-titled series by Alex De Campi and Rey Villegas.

Regarding his contribution to the overall Zorro mythos, Denton says, "I'm honored and thrilled. Outside of growing up loving the comics and TV shows, my life has intersected with the character several times. I've lived in places where they filmed Zorro like Cerrillos, NM, and my current home in Los Angeles. I currently live near frequent movie site Vasquez Rocks, which is named after notorious bandit Tiburcio Vasquez, the inspiration for Don Diego de la Vega (Zorro). Zorro roamed what is now Los Angeles, so I'm surrounded by his mythology all the time. Being able to contribute to characters within Zorro's mythology, like Lady Rawhide and Lady Zorro, is incredibly rewarding!"

"The folks here at Dynamite love two-fisted, gun-blazing, whip-cracking action, and that's exactly what Lady Rawhide / Lady Zorro delivers," says Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher. "With his flair for pulp action, Shannon is a perfect choice to take up the reins on the new miniseries. And there's no one better suited for bringing these two pistoleras together than Rey Villegas, whose supreme skill brought both characters to life in their respective solo series. Buckle up, comic fans - it's going to be a wild ride!"

Lady Rawhide/Lady Zorro #1
will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors' January 2015 Previews catalog and slated for release in March. Lady Rawhide/Lady Zorro will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, Dynamite Digital, iVerse and Dark Horse Digital. Full press release below.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Review - Harbinger: Faith #0

"Los Angeles is beautiful. And everyone is so cool to us, but it's really strange being famous here in the land of fame."

That moment when you get special powers is a pretty powerful moment. How you react to that moment and in the future will define you. You can fight evil with it or commit evil with it. In whichever scenario, there's a very real possibility that new doors will open up for you. Doors like those for Faith in Harbinger: Faith #0 from Valiant Entertainment. The issue is written by Joshua Dysart, illustrated by Robert Gill, colored by Jose Villarrubia and lettered by Dave Sharpe.

"Dead Hand" Comes Alive in March 2015

X-O Manowar has proven an ability to withstand almost any and all comers. Aric of Darcia is a hero for the centuries who has gone up against a wide variety of enemies, most of whom he's defeated in the end. He may meet his match in March in X-O Manowar #34 from Robert Venditti and Diego Bernard. The issue pits him against Dead Hand, the ultimate fail-safe of an extinct alien race. The civilization that built them has fallen...and, now, to combat the doomsday threat that destroyed their world, DEAD HAND will complete the mission that their creators could not. Soulless and brutal, this billion-strong legion is the phantom army of a dead world…and it will cleanse the universe by any means necessary. But what unthinkable menace were they created to destroy? And will DEAD HAND's slow march across the galaxy spell death for countless worlds?

"DEAD HAND is going to take the mythology surrounding the X-O Manowar armor, and the entire Valiant Universe, in a direction not seen before," said writer Robert Venditti. "As formidable as the adversaries in the series have been to date, none of them measure up to this single-minded, doomsday threat. X-O Manowar has made a habit of taking what readers expect and turning it on its head. We've challenged ourselves to do that again."

Born into battle, Aric of Dacia, the fifth century Visigoth now called X-O Manowar, has never known peace. Abducted and enslaved by the savage alien empire known as The Vine, Aric finally escaped his captors after stealing their ultra-powerful X-O Manowar armor and returned to Earth…only to find that more than a thousand years had passed in his absence. Stranded in the modern day, the most primitive man on Earth now wields the most powerful weapon in existence as X-O Manowar – one of the Earth's most formidable new heroes and a member of the international superteam codenamed Unity. Together, X-O Manowar and Unity have wrenched the world back from the chaos wrought by the invasion of the unearthly Armor Hunters…but, in 2015, the fate of all life – human and alien alike – will be thrown into dire peril…

"Last summer, X-O Manowar went up against the Armor Hunters for a full-metal throwdown between Earth and alien life. Well, we won the battle, but that doesn't mean we've won the war," said Valiant Editor-in-Chief Warren Simons. "Somewhere out there, something colder, grimmer, and more calculating is about to come online. And it won't concede that war, even in death. An extinct world has saved a nasty treat for the Valiant U – something insanely effective that could only exist in the wake of their failure – a dead hand. Venditti's cooked up a good one, folks."

Full press release below.

Mad Science Returns in The Manhattan Projects: The Sun Beyond the Stars

If science isn't weird or mad, then you're not doing it right. What fun is science when it's just about science right? Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra know a thing or two about regaling readers with tales of science gone awry and slightly off-kilter in Manhattan Projects, a universe they're happy to return to in The Manhattan Projects: The Sun Beyond the Stars #1, hitting stores March 11, 2015.

"Nick and I are really excited about the new format," noted co-creator Hickman. "We're looking forward to telling stories that have a tighter scope because then we believe we can really open it up. Do some really big stuff."

"I just want to draw Russian dogs fighting aliens," said co-creator Pitarra. "And if I can throw in a few opposable thumbs as well, fantastic!"

In The Manhattan Projects: The Sun Beyond the Stars #1, Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin is lost in space—and only now does he find his true calling. With all new stories told in a brand-new format, the greatest feel good, bad science book in the long history of man returns in The Manhattan Projects: The Sun Beyond the Stars #1. The book is available under Diamond Code JAN150586. Full press release below.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Review - Rocket Salvage #1

"I always knew I was destined for greatness, Dr. Utzman. This ain't luck. It's pure skill."

Life as a space racer is all glitz and glamour when you're winning. When you're not winning, things get a little less exciting for the loser. Life goes on regardless and things have to be done to live that life, including running something like a salvage yard. In Rocket Salvage #1 from Archaia, that's just what Primo Rocket is forced to endure. The issue is written by Yehudi Mercado, illustrated by Bachan, colored by Jeremy Lawson and lettered by Deron Bennett.

Marceline and Princess Bubblegum Shake Up Friendship

AT: Marceline Gone Adrift #1 Cover A

Friends fight. It happens. They move on. It's rare though that the friends represent royalty and music, as are Marceline and Princess Bubblegum from the Land of Ooo. In Adventure Time: Marceline Gone Adrift #1, writer Meredith Gran and artist Carey Pietsch bring readers an all-new story featuring everyone’s favorite BFFs, Marceline the Vampire Queen and Princess Bubblegum.

“Meredith wowed us with Scream Queens, and we’re very excited to have her back for this new miniseries,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “She and Carey are the perfect team to show off one of Adventure Time’s most popular friendships. We’re journeying outside of Ooo for this one, so get ready to see what kind of trouble Marcy and PB can get into on a different planet!”

Marceline is on a rampage for mysterious reasons, and the kingdom of Ooo is desperately scrambling to stop her. In trying to save both Ooo and Marceline herself, Princess Bubblegum accidentally propels Marceline into the farthest reaches of space...and strips her of her powers! Guilt-ridden, Princess Bubblegum sets off on a space rescue that’ll test the power of her well as the power of friendship.

Adventure Time: Marceline Gone Adrift #1 arrives in comic shops on January 14th with a cover price of $3.99 under Diamond order code NOV141125. The issue ships with main covers by Reimena Yee and Mychal Amann, a retailer incentive cover by Britt Wilson, and a special BOOM! 10 Year Anniversary retailer incentive cover by Joe Quinones. The Final Order Cutoff deadline for retailers is December 15th.

Full press release below.

Archie Comics Relaunches Series With Archie #1

Archie Comics is known for some of its characters, many of whom have what you would call "longevity." Archie, Jughead, Betty and Veronica, Josey and the Pussycats and Sabrina the Teenage Witch are all pretty recognizable and offer a lesson in maintaining relevance. Still, characters with such extensive backgrounds bring with them equally as extensive baggage so to speak, so it's a good thing every now and then to hit the reset button. Archie Comics is doing just that in a big way, as Archie #1 will boast the talents of Mark Waid and Fiona Staples when it launches next year.

“The Archie characters aren’t in need of a tune-up, ‘shocking change,’ or revision. These characters have stood the test of time and resonate to this day – we’ve proven that over the last six years,” said Archie Comics Publisher/CEO Jon Goldwater. “What ARCHIE #1 will do, though, is bring together two of the most talented creators in comics in Mark Waid and Fiona Staples and create a surprising and definitive take on Archie’s origin – a story that has never been. The book will bring back some of the bite of Archie’s original tales in a modern, forward-looking manner, while still retaining the character’s all-ages appeal. What better way to celebrate 75 years of Archie Andrews?”

Waid, no stranger to major comic book storylines – having penned DC’s Kingdom Come, often cited as one of the best comic series in history among many sterling credits – will bring his knack for reinvigorating long-running properties to create a comic that not only presents Archie and his friends squarely in the present, but also turns up the humor. The story will get its visual personality from the unique direction and presentation of Staples, the artist on the perennial bestseller and critical darling comic series Saga.

The groundbreaking relaunch kicks off a bold and multi-platform celebration of 75 years of Archie starting in the latter half of 2015 and rolling through the anniversary year of 2016. The “Archie 75” celebration will start with Riverdale a one-hour drama written by Archie Comics Chief Creative Officer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa based on the iconic Archie comic book characters will debut on Fox, produced in tandem with Warner Brothers Studios and studio-based Berlanti Productions. Set in the present, the series offers a bold, subversive take on Archie, Betty, Veronica and their friends, exploring the surreality of small-town life and the darkness and weirdness bubbling beneath Riverdale’s wholesome facade. Marc EckĊ has signed on to design an exclusive line of Archie themed apparel for men, from teens to adults, under the Unlable.ME brand. And finally, a robust and diverse publishing initiative is gearing up that will feature 75th anniversary-themed periodical, graphic novel, digital and specialty product geared toward new and longtime fans. Editorially, fans can expect to see a targeted digest program retaining the “classic” Archie look and style and the expansion of the world being built in the new Archie series via additional ongoing titles.

Full press release below.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Review - Herald Lovecraft and Tesla #1

"History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme."

Ever wonder if Tesla met Lovecraft what the result would be? Would the two hit it off instantly? Would they find disagreement in their differing views on life? Would they team up to save the life of Amelia Earhart? Only Herald Lovecraft and Tesla #1 from Action Lab Entertainment has the answer! The issue is written by John Reilly, penciled by Tom Rogers and inked/colored/lettered by Dexter Weeks.

Preview - The Gifted

A lone wolf, starved and broken, hunts for food amid Earth’s barren landscape. Drawn to an industrial plant at the fringe of a city, the wolf discovers a chance. But humans protect what they believe they own. Wounded and dying, the wolf seeks shelter. What he finds, ho1wever, proves far more powerful: the gift of consciousness. Discovering that he is not alone, the wolf leads his fellow animals in a violent uprising against humanity, fighting to bring color back to the world.

If any or all of that sounds appealing, then you like to check it out. It's written by Damian A. Wassel and illustrated by Nathan C. Gooden. The Gifted is in stores now with interiors below.