Thursday, July 31, 2008

Adidas Hellboy Shoe Contest

Not really sure what the promo people at Dark Horse were thinking when they came up with this promotion, but who am I to argue with Adidas shoes? Especially if those shoes bear some Hellboy representation on them? The contest is simple: enter your name to win one of two exclusive pairs of Adidas shoes based on Hellboy II: The Golden Army The Forum Mid-Golden Army takes the court standard and mixes the appropriate trio of gold, black and white with Hellboy lettering across the Velcro strap, with an image of Ron Perlman as the titular demonic anti-hero on the outsole and footbed. Additionally, adidas Originals created a jaw-dropping statement with the Stan Mid-Hellboy in cooperation with Dark Horse Comics & Mike Mignola. The black shoe has the image of Hellboy printed on its side in red and extra details on the inner and outer sole, like a collection of three extra footbeds, plus lace jewels, a mini-comic and unique tongue branding. Both the Forum Mid-Golden Army and the Stan Mid-Hellboy come in a specially designed shoe box and different tissue wrappings, making them true collector pieces. So get over there and enter. Adidas Hellboy Shoe Contest

Digital Comics Highlights: The Marvels

Apparently every week now Marvel will be allowing readers to check out five comics from their Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited collection for free it seems. This is a great way to check out some various back issues from the comfort of your own home and with the ease of the Digital Comics web viewer. This week, the comics being showcased are:
  • Captain Marvel #1
  • Ms. Marvel v1 #1
  • Ms. Marvel v2 #13
  • Civil War: The Return #1
  • Civil War: Young Avengers and Runaways #1
So head on over and check them out. The only thing you'll really lose is your time. Digital Comics Highlights: The Marvels

DC Universe Comic Con pictures and podcasts

If you weren't fortunate enough to be at Comic Con and see all the goodies that DC Universe wrought, well DC's got you covered. Over at their newly designed website you can check out pictures and podcasts from the show, and it'll almost be like you were there. Only without the maddening crowds and crazy costumes. DC at Comic Con

Zack Snyder directing next Batman?

I'm going to go ahead and save you the trouble and say that this is most likely wild speculation with no credibilty to it whatsoever. But it could be news, so I'll report on it nonetheless. The first part of this post isn't really insane, just noteworthy. Wizard Online (via The Daily News) mentions a recommendation by Julie Newmar as to who would make a good Catwoman. "Angelina [Jolie] would own the part," Newmar told the Daily News. "My industry friends tell me [she] has made inquiries about the role." While Jonathan and Christopher Nolan haven't committed to the villains in the third film, they've pretty much said that they're not really keen on bringing Catwoman back into the mix. Wizard Online also reports that during Comic Con's "The Visionaries: Filmmakers" panel that Zack Snyder said that he'd love to see a big screen adaptation of Frank Miller's beloved classic The Dark Knight Returns. Nothing too controversial about that in itself. But when you add in Miller's response, which just so happened to be "You can do it anytime you want, Zack," well then things get a little more interesting. Now of course, this doesn't mean Snyder is anywhere near confirmed for anything. And the chemistry that Christopher Nolan has developed with the cast and the vibe he's added to the current incarnation of the Batman is undeniably successful and awesome. Its fairly confirmed at this point that Nolan will be back for a third Batman, but where does the franchise go after that? Sam Raimi might not be coming back for Spider-Man 4, as it seems trilogies tend to be the lifespan for a director. So there you have it, answers in the same post. Its fairly certain that Snyder wouldn't direct the third Batman film, but after that, its anyone's guess. Zack Snyder directing Batman 3?

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

Okay- Southland Tales. First of all? Wow. Just that: wow. If you’ve seen it, you understand the weight of that single word. Second? Why am I spending this week’s post writing about a feature film that doesn’t involve spandex, capes, death rays and the like (a la the increasingly popular super-hero adaptation)? I’m not a huge fan of marketing ploys, and comic books have inevitably become another outlet by which Hollywood producers crank out merchandise to supplement the profit they make on such-and-such summer blockbuster film. I’ve never really wanted to be that guy who goes out and spends money on the “movie-prequel” illustrated story and sits in the theater and bugs the crap out of their friends by interjecting useless information from it that the fans were promised would be crucial to understanding the background of the film and that is ambiguously referenced in it at best. (Editor’s Note: And even if he does know something about the film that would prove useful he doesn’t tell you until AFTER you’ve seen the damn movie. Stuff like “look for X in scene Y.”) And comic adaptations of the film, just straight up? ...I just don’t get it. Reimaginings are one thing- believe it or not, there’s a Japanese Manga-style version of the Star Wars trilogy that I had a brief romance with. It’ll blow you away just how well those movies work in that style yet take on a different feel to them all together in the process. But other than that- why? What are you buying? Why are you buying it? Just a thought. Well, to make a long story short- Southland Tales might be one of those rare and few endeavors in which reading the supplemental graphic material is worthwhile, even necessary. Originally, the launch of the movie was envisioned as an “interactive” experience in which the first six chapters of the story’s plot would be told in comic book form, released before the filmed three chapter conclusion was shown on the big screen. Ultimately, the story for this particular project got condensed into six chapters, with only three graphic novels published. But yeah, if you popped the movie into your DVD player and were baffled by its first storyboard (entitled “Part IV: Temptation Awaits”), that’s why. Of course, it isn’t that the background of the characters and the setting aren’t explained in the movie itself. You can just watch it, if you like. It’s that even HAVING read the prequel material, making since of what the hell you just saw is a staggering intellectual endeavor (or a James Joyce-esque @#$%-you to people like…well, me, I suppose. Over-thoughtful comic book and science-fiction dorks with too much free time). Of course, the real reason I’m writing today’s post is that I just can’t help myself with stuff like this. Southland has this very cool, very creepy, and very, very, VERY ambiguous David Lynch feel to it. When I was a kid, I tuned in every Thursday night to Twin Peaks and watched Dale Cooper (Kyle McLachlan) try to figure out who killed Laura Palmer. It scared the hell out of me, but I watched it, addictively. It wasn’t the idea of a murder that kept me awake at night- I was way too young to really “get” what the prospect of violence and loss meant. No, it was those creepy-ass dream sequences involving midgets speaking in backwards tongues that scared the #$%& out of me. Even to this day, I get chills. But as I got older, I rewatched the show with friends fanatically, trying to decipher ever inch of screen time and symbolism. I can’t help myself. I go to websites and read other people’s theories about the show in my free time even. I know J.J. Abrams pulls this shtick with Lost with similar success as well and I’m quickly succumbing to its lure lately. Of course, it is quite possible that Southland puts these other attempts to shame as far as raw complexity goes. I mean, I’m not ruling out the possibility that it’s mostly fluff, meant to confuse the viewer more than to enlighten them. But something about it- I just can’t stop trying. Set in a (slightly) futuristic California, the film and its preceding graphic novels depict “the end of the world”. Trying to explain more about the plot than that here is way outside my scope (and maybe even my capabilities). It’s gotta be read and seen, not explained. Although, hey, even if you have no idea going on the movie (like me)? It’s worth the watch- the film features an eclectic, “never going to see these people together in something again” cast that will take you aback at times. Among the ensemble, all of whom offer funny, but sometimes surprisingly deep, performances, I count Dwayne Johnson (“The Rock”), Seann William Scott (of American Pie fame), Sarah Michelle Gellar, Mandy Moore, Justin Timberlake, Jon Lovitz, Kevin Smith (yeah, that’s him near the end there), Amy Poehler (SNL veteran), and Christopher Lambert (the original Highlander). That’s not even a complete list of notables. And for those of you who have read/ seen it- what does it all mean? Oh, I have some theories. But they’re just that: theories. Any, all, or none of what I say could be true. If anyone has any clearer ideas than me, please, let me know- I’d welcome any or all discussion. I’ll list a few ideas below (spoil the comics and film at your own discretion, if you haven’t seen it), but after that you’re on your own. Duality and Polarization: Roughly, I think you could look at the story as a political warning. The conservatives walk around in clean suits and work towards the slow transformation of a Democratic government into a veritable police state. The liberals, on the other hand, seem to view tearing the government down as more of a pop-culture artistic phenomenon than as an extremely dangerous and influential past time and hang out in beach houses and garages filled with post-modern art. Everybody is just TOO MUCH what they are- there is little moderation and no one really gets what the hell is going on. No one can really see the big picture because they can’t see out of their own ass. At the film’s conclusion, you have a time displaced character facing his “self” and coming to completely opposite conclusions about what has happened in his life. And the world ends because everyone is just too damn different. All that Bible Stuff: The constant book of Revelations references makes for the obvious parallel. Maybe the whole thing is just one big allegory for the last chapter of the Bible. While the direct references through the series help you “read along”, there could be quite a lot more buried in there that someone with a better sense for theology than yours truly could get. Pretty sure there was a “Whore of Babylon” in Revelations, right? Couldn’t that be Sarah Michelle Gellar’s character? And if you’re paying attention, the red-haired Chinese woman (played by Bai Ling in the movie) is named Serpentine. As for who’s the Christ and the Anti-Christ…well, I’m not going to touch that one. Total Confusion: It isn’t that the events of the story itself are supposed to be picked apart and even understood. It’s that you, the reader/viewer experience the kind of confusion that everybody WOULD if the world ended. It’s scary because it isn’t understandable. Maybe the world gets punished for sins that people committed thousands of years ago, maybe politics and technology just gets out of control- either way, you don’t know what the hell is going on. And you’re helpless. And that’s what it’s like at the end of the world: it isn’t any one person or thing, it’s EVERYTHING, and it’s been set in motion over the course of thousands of years. No one gets the big picture and you’re just a tiny cog in the machine, playing your part. The movies funny…but it’s scary, too.

Witchblade: Complete TV Series DVD

I never quite got into the Witchblade series, however that doesn't mean I don't respect it for what it is. It put Top Cow on the map, and features what has become commonplace these days in a hot chick kicking serious ass and taking names. So naturally, such success would warrant a TV series, and while said series was relatively short lived, it now lives on in DVD form. Released yesterday (July 29), Witchblade: Complete TV Series hit store on the lovely DVD format. The DVD sets includes the following special features:
  • Witchblade: Gabriel's Philosophical Insights on Selected Episodes
  • Wielding the Blade Featurette
  • Bringing the Blade to Life Featurette
  • Original Casting Sessions for Series Leads
The seven-disc series retails for about $54.95 if you're so inclined. Witchblade: Complete TV Series on DVD

Spider-Man: Web of Shadows trailer

I'm getting more and more intrigued about Spider-Man: Web of Shadows. The most recent trailer really highlights some of the brighter spots of the game, and shows off the Wolverine symbiote we've heard so much about. So check it out, and maybe it will help guide your decision as to whether you buy it when it comes out or not.

Wildstorm gets Capcom

Wildstorm is really stepping it up when it comes to video game inspired comics. They've got the World of Warcraft series, they will be doing the upcoming Gears of War comic and will have something to say about the Mirror's Edge comic due out later this year. So what games are left? How about two big guns from Capcom in Resident Evil and Devil May Cry? “Capcom is thrilled to be partnering with DC,” said Germaine Gioia, Senior Vice President of Licensing for Capcom Entertainment, Inc. “Comics are a critical component in Capcom’s merchandising strategy for our most cherished franchises, as they target the same discerning, loyal fans that care most about these established brands. DC’s undisputed development and distribution strength within the comic industry make them an ideal partner to further expand two of our most successful and sophisticated gaming properties.” No release dates, writers or artists have been divulged by either DC/Wildstorm or Capcom, but you can bet your bottom dollar that they'll be hitting comic store shelves in the not to distant future. I'm glad that video game companies are finally starting to realize that yes, the same people that play your games read comics. And vice versa. This new era we're ushering in is beginning to frighten me though, I have to say. I mean, are you telling me that one day I'll be able to get video games and comics from the same place (and not in imported format)? Heavens to Betsy! Full press release below. DC COMICS AND CAPCOM® ANNOUNCE PLANS FOR RESIDENT EVIL®, AND DEVIL MAY CRY® COMIC BOOK SERIES SAN MATEO, Calif. — Jul 25, 2008 — DC Comics, the largest English-language publisher of comic books in the world, and Capcom®, a leading worldwide developer and publisher of video games, today announced plans to join forces to create a comic book series based on Capcom’s popular gaming properties Resident Evil® and Devil May Cry®. “Capcom is thrilled to be partnering with DC,” said Germaine Gioia, Senior Vice President of Licensing for Capcom Entertainment, Inc. “Comics are a critical component in Capcom’s merchandising strategy for our most cherished franchises, as they target the same discerning, loyal fans that care most about these established brands. DC’s undisputed development and distribution strength within the comic industry make them an ideal partner to further expand two of our most successful and sophisticated gaming properties.” Details on the new series, including creative team and launch month, will be announced at a later date. Both titles will be published by DC Comics’ WildStorm imprint. “We’re ecstatic that Resident Evil is returning to WildStorm, where we have already established deep roots into the mythos of this world,” said Hank Kanalz, Vice President/General Manager for WildStorm. “We can’t wait to continue, and bring a freshness and excitement to the property to match the amazing things they are doing with the game.” The Resident Evil series of video games has sold over 34 million units since the original game was released in 1996, as well as spawned a multi-million dollar trilogy of films from Sony Pictures. Resident Evil® 5 will revolutionize the Resident Evil series, just as Resident Evil® 4 did. To coincide with the Resident Evil comic book is the latest installment in the Resident Evil series, Resident Evil 5, which unveils a world where the biohazard threat has not ended: Just when it seemed the menace of Resident Evil was destroyed, a new terror appears in Resident Evil 5. Resident Evil’s returning hero, Chris Redfield, has followed the path of the evil around the globe, and after joining a new organization, heads to Africa, where the latest threat is transforming people and animals into mindless, bloodthirsty creatures. Joined by a new partner, Sheva Alomar, the duo must work together to unravel the truth behind the evil menace. The latest in the Devil May Cry series, Devil May Cry® 4 is already a bonafide hit in the console world, having shipped over 2 million units worldwide since its release in North America in February. Devil May Cry 4 immerses gamers in a gothic supernatural world, where a new protagonist clashes with a familiar hero. As the new leading man, Nero, players will unleash incredible attacks and non-stop combos using a unique new gameplay mechanic: the powerful “Devil Bringer” on his right arm. “Dante, Nero and the world of DEVIL MAY CRY is a perfect fit for the sensibilities of our studio,” Kanalz said. “We have such terrific inspiration from the anime and games and we intend on meeting the exceptionally high standard of quality that has been set for this.”

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

New Arrivals: July 30, 2008

Nothing new in the way of mega storylines this week, but there is a quite tasty Thor #10 hitting stores featuring the literary stylings of J. Michael Straczynski and the art of Olivier Coipel. Enjoy! New Arrivals: July 30, 2008 (pdf)

Is Two-Face returning?

There are spoilers ahead if you're one of the maybe two people that haven't seen The Dark Knight yet. IMDB reports in a recent interview with World Entertainment News Network (WENN) that Aaron Eckhart would reprise his role as Harvey Dent/Two-Face in a third Batman movie if asked. "To work with Christian (Bale) all over again, and the cast, would be phenomenal. I think this movie is a movie of a lifetime." Now, you could take this as just a passing comment, as I doubt that Christopher Nolan has the third Batman movie even sketched out yet (although there have been reports to the contrary). But The Dark Knight never really resolved Two-Face, as to whether or not he actually died. Batman and Commissioner Gordon simply say that they have to make sure that the public never knows what he becomes, and there's the memorial service at the end, but you never see the body. My guess is that Eckhart was just saying it out of respect to Bale and the cast, but come on. You know its fun to speculate. Eckhart wants to do third Batman

The Magdalena movie announced by Top Cow

Top Cow is all about hot chicks that kick ass. And while news that The Magdalena comic is being adapted to a full-length movie is kind of old news, Marc Silvestri had good things to say about the casting choices (Jenna Dewan and Luke Goss) for the film when talking to Newsarama. "I thought they were great choices," Silvestri said of the casting. "Dewan has a great physical presence. She was actually a dancer in her background before she turned to movies. So she has a very strong physicality about her. And obviously, we've got Luke Goss as another character, and he's got some real steam behind him after playing Prince Nuada in Hellboy 2. And the producer, Gale Anne Hurd -- her credits speak for herself. She's passionate about this genre and has more experience than most people in Hollywood do in transferring this type of stuff to the screen. We couldn't ask for more at this point." The Magdalena is a Top Cow comic series about a generational line of female warriors descended from Mary Magdalene who have been charged with protecting the Catholic Church. Each generation’s Magdalena warrior is handed down the Spear of Destiny to use as her weapon. The current Magdalena is Patience, who has clashed with her superiors at the Vatican and so has removed any allegiance to them, though she still acts to fulfill her mission as a Holy Warrior. “The Magdalena” movie is produced by Gale Anne Hurd’s Valhalla Motion Pictures, Platinum Studios and Top Cow Productions. So nothing else to report on regarding the film, other than that its due out at some point in the near future, probably sometime in 2009. Silvestri talks Top Cow films

Mirror's Edge Comic-Con Exclusive Comic

The video game presence at Comic Con gets bigger and bigger every year, as more companies are surely realizing that yes comic book fans do tend to play video games. Part of that crossover appeal are video game inspired comic books, the latest of which to get the treatment being Mirror's Edge from EA. Below is the seven page Comic Con special comic scanned in courtesy of Siliconera. Enjoy. Mirror's Edge Comic-Con Exclusive Comic

Monday, July 28, 2008

X-Men Origins: Wolverine trailer

Update #3: It looks like the Debbie Downers of copyrights have gotten to Comic Book Movie as well, as the trailer has since gone down. Be sure to keep your eyes open for the official release of the trailer at some point in the near future. Update #2: Fox hasn't gotten to everyone yet! Comic Book Movie has the trailer still up, however its broken into two parts. Below are said two parts for your enjoyment. Part 1 Part 2 Update #1: Well, that lasted longer than I thought. The copyright police have appeared and taken down the video. I'm trying to find another site that has it, so check back in and hopefully I'll have it up. Get it while the getting's good. Here's the X-Men Origins: Wolverine trailer, courtesy of an intrepid Comic-Con attendee that smuggled a camera into the panel and sent it to Hollywood Grind (thanks to Mark over at European Film Report for the tip). Tsk, tsk. Anyways, enjoy it before I get the obligatory DMCA notice. This movie is going to be so f'ing badass.

Four more confirmed for MK vs. DC Universe

Details about MK vs. DC Universe have been trickling out slowly but surely, and Comic Con saw four new characters announced for the game. According to Siliconera, Joker, Green Lantern, Jax and Kitana have all been added to the game. This brings the entire list to 14 fighters, including:
  • Batman
  • Superman
  • The Flash
  • Catwoman
  • Shazam
  • Joker
  • Green Lantern
  • Sub-Zero
  • Scorpion
  • Sonya
  • Shang Tsung
  • Liu Kang
  • Jax
  • Kitana
At this point, I'd really only expect to see maybe four more characters (two on each side), because that would bring the playable character count to 18. Who would those two on the DC side be? Well I'm sure Wonder Woman would be one, and most likely Martian Manhunter as the other. I would think that maybe one more DC villain would be added in, but I'm not really sure who. Maybe Doomsday? Darkseid? Bane? The two villains are Batman related in Joker and Catwoman, and Catwoman is kind of a half-villain. So you would expect a Superman villain to be in there, but you'd also expect to have Wonder Woman in there since DC is really starting to focus on her character. Four more confirmed for MK vs. DC Universe

Mark Millar returning to the Ultimate universe

San Diego Comic Con 2008 has come and gone, and all we're left with are anouncements, news and speculation on the year ahead. One of the big guns in Marvel had a pretty big announcement regarding their Ultimate universe, and it involved none other than Mark Millar. Millar-recently out of a Marvel contract-toyed with the notion of not resigning to work on his own stuff, but then he had a supposedly epic idea regarding the Ultimate universe. "And then I was on the train a few weeks ago, and I got an idea for an Ultimate book that's bigger than all the other Ultimate books. This one just re-establishes everything in the Ultimate Universe and becomes the daddy of the whole Ultimate line. Just by its very nature, it can't be anything other than the biggest book in the Ultimate line every month." And while no details have been divulged regarding the epic storyline, Millar will be sure to make sure that his story seamlessly integrates with the upcoming Ultimatum that Brian Michael Bendis and Jeph Loeb are working on. "A huge part of this is to do all the Ultimate characters I never got a chance to do," Millar says. "So although it's gong to be made up out of the established Ultimate characters, I really wanted to go wide on the Ultimate Universe too. I think the thing I'm probably best at. You know every writer's got their little thing they're best at like Bendis with his dialogue—I'm pretty good at reinventing things. I had great fun doing Ultimate Tony Stark and Ultimate Nick Fury, so I wanted to spread that out too and see what Ultimate Ghost Rider would be like or Ultimate Blade. That kind of stuff is going to feature quite heavily. I really want to reinvent the whole Marvel Universe." Stay tuned for what will most surely be an awesome twist on the Ultimate universe. Millar back in the Ultimate universe

The Dark Knight continues its box office rampage

Not quite surprising, but The Dark Knight continues to make money. Lots of money. Second weekend totals are coming in at $76 million according to Reuters, which brings its 10 day total to $314 million. This is seemingly ludicrous, so let's put it in perspective. The previous record for fastest to $300 million was Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest in 2006, which took 16 days to reach the mark. Shrek 2 hit $400 million in 43 days, and at the current pace, The Dark Knight will break that in 18 days. Titanic (ugh) is the all-time leader in terms of ticket sales at $601 million, so its still far off from reaching that goal. And honestly, I don't think it will beat that since its such a tough mark and The Dark Knight isn't quite the universal film that Titanic was. But still. Iron Man has hauled in $315 million, but has also been out since May and is currently the biggest film of the year. The Dark Knight will probably pass that in a few days, and move up from its 23rd ranking in terms of best all time. The Dark Knight trouncing competition

Friday, July 25, 2008

Liu Kang appears in MK vs. DC Universe

So you had to know it was coming. I mean, how could they possibly make a Mortal Kombat game without Liu Kang? He's as integral to the series as Ken is to the Street Fighter series. So now that we know Liu Kang is on his way, what will he look like in his rendered glory? Gamikaze has the answer. Above is a screenshot of Liu Kang from the upcoming MK vs. DC Universe, and he pretty much looks like you expect him to look. Glad to know that Midway isn't throwing us a curveball. Liu Kang render

Top 5 Batman handheld games

Imagine this scenario if you will. You're sitting in line, eagerly awaiting the opportunity to be mobbed into the theater to see The Dark Knight for the tenth time. Of course, you can talk to your friends, maybe play some cards, you know...waiting in line activities. But suppose you wanted to play a video game. And suppose that you wanted to play a Batman related video game. Which one would you play? That's a good question, and its one that Pocket Gamer answered. Over on their site is a list of the top 5 Batman handheld games. The top 5 are:
  • Batman (Game Boy)
  • The Adventures of Batman and Robin (Game Gear)
  • Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (Game Boy Advance)
  • Batman Begins (Mobile)
  • LEGO Batman
The list of course assumes that you have readily available the various pieces of hardware necessary to play said games (or some good emulators on a hacked DS or PSP). And they're also counting on LEGO Batman being a really good game (which I'm sure it will be). But still, a great list of quality Batman games. Top 5 Batman handheld games

Marvel to the Nth Degree

Comic-Con is here, and all week I've been trying to get programming out for some of the smaller publishers. Which means that Marvel and DC haven't really been getting the love from me, and I assure you that's not intentional. So to remedy this situation, I'm here to tell you that Marvel has something epic planned for Friday. At 3:30 PM PT in Room 6A, Marvel Editor-in-Chief Joe Quesada and Ruwan Jayatilleke (SVP Marvel Strategic Development) will announce a covert top secret project that Marvel has been working on for months. The project is an effort to give readers the chance to experience a new work by one of the biggest names in entertainment (Marvel goes out of its way to emphasize entertatainment as opposed to comics) in an entirely new way. And there will be surprise guests! What I'm thinking it a partnership with a big gaming company allowing the Marvel licenses to be used. And most likely it will be an answer to DC Universe Online, only the Marvel version. DC has shown that an MMO featuring comic superheroes and villains can be done. Or it could even be a more interactive experience with a Marvel property that is coming up soon. What is it? The mind boggles with anticipation! Marvel to the Nth Degree

Comic-Con Exclusives Batman/Joker

Considering quantities are limited, this may be a little late for your own good. But if you're reading this, get over to the Graphitti Designs booth (#2315) as soon as possible to pick up one or both of these lovely figures. Batman is limited to 6,000, while the Joker is limited to 2,000, both of which commemorate the 10th anniversary of DC Direct. These are geared to coincide with a movie you may have heard of pitting the two against each other in The Dark Knight. So enjoy the Con, and if Batman/Joker is your thing, try and get these figures ASAP. And if you want to send on my way (since I won't be at the show), I would forever be in your debt (Batman if you'd be so kind). Comic-Con Batman/Joker 10th Anniversary DC Direct

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 trailer

Courtesy of Kotaku (and Marvel via Comic-Con), here's the trailer for Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2, showing off that spiffy fusion action, which really looks like superhero combos. Good times.

Top Cow at Comic-Con

What would Comic-Con be without the presence of Top Cow? Below is the full press release announcing their signing schedule as well as what to expect from the bovine at the top. And here's the link to head on over to the Top Cow website if you're so inclined. TOP COW ANNOUNCES 2008 SAN DIEGO COMIC-CON GUESTS, EXCLUSIVES AND PANEL TOP COW AT SAN DIEGO COMIC-CON Publisher to unveil new exclusive comics, special announcements and a host of guests LOS ANGELES, Calif., July 22, 2008 – Top Cow Productions Inc. announced its schedule today for this week’s San Diego Comic-Con, the nation’s biggest and best comics and pop culture extravaganza to be held at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, California from July 23 - 27. Top Cow will set up shop at Booth #2329 and heads into the convention with exclusives, preview books, free goodies and a long list of guests, headlined by Top Cow CEO and founder Marc Silvestri (Witchblade, The Darkness, Cyberforce), artist J.G. Jones (Wanted) and writer Paul Dini (Madame Mirage). Actor and producer Seth Green (Robot Chicken, Family Guy) and writer Hugh Sterbakov will be on hand to sign copies of their new Freshmen comic, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special and the new Vol. 1 hardcover. During their signing (see schedule below), they will be joined by renowned sculptor Clayburn Moore to premiere the prototype of the Nightmare Puppeteer Torso Statue, based on the lead female Freshmen character. The limited-run statue will ship in early 2009 but will be available for pre-order at Comic-Con and comes with a signed Certificate of Authenticity and an exclusive mini-litho, available only at the signing. The creators behind Broken Trinity, Top Cow’s big summer event that will have far-reaching consequences on the Top Cow Universe, will also be at the show. Writer Ron Marz (Witchblade, Samurai: Heaven and Earth), layout artist Phil Hester (and current writer on The Darkness) and artist Stjepan Sejic (Witchblade) will sign copies of Broken Trinity #1, which features an exclusive variant cover by Sejic. Hester’s partner on The Darkness, artist Michael Broussard (Unholy Union),will also be available for autographs and sketches. At the Top Cow booth (#2329), the publisher will have the following new products available for fans: • First Born: Aftermath San Diego Comic-Con exclusive cover by Ryan Sook • Witchblade #118 San Diego Comic-Con exclusive cover by Marc Silvestri • Broken Trinity #1 San Diego Comic-Con exclusive cover by Stjepan Sejic • Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special San Diego Comic-Con exclusive cover by Sheldon Mitchell • Starfall Preview Book – available for free, get an early look at the upcoming sci-fi, fantasy and adventure series by Randy Queen (Darkchylde) and Sarah Oates • Black Vault / Impaler Preview Book – available for free, this flip book features first looks at the space suspense tale Black Vault (formerly Iron Maiden One) by writer B. Clay Moore (Hawaiian Dick) and artist Nelson Blake II (G.I. Jo: Reloaded), and the critically acclaimed vampire story Impaler by writer William Harms (Bad Mojo) • Available for sale, new posters for Broken Trinity by Dale Keown, Starfall by Randy Queen and Sarah Oates, and Cyblade / Velocity by Stjepan Sejic • Available for sale, new lithographs for Broken Trinity, Freshmen, Madame Mirage and reprints of Wanted and The Darkness • Available for sale, new T-shirts by Swagdog, plus get a glimpse at a new line of tees from Iron Fist Top Cow will also present a panel on Saturday, July 26 from 3 – 4 p.m. in Room 2 of the Convention Center, where attendees can hear exciting announcements about recent film developments and upcoming publishing plans, including new projects from top creators. Panelists will include Marc Silvestri, Seth Green, Paul Dini, Ron Marz and special surprise guests straight from Hollywood. Attendees will also receive a free gift and a special pass to an autograph signing with Freshmen creators Seth Green and Hugh Sterbakov and surprise guests, to take place after the panel at the Top Cow Booth (#2329). One lucky attendee will receive a free piece of original art from Witchblade artist Stjepan Sejic. Fans will also get the opportunity to meet and talk with their favorite Top Cow creators. The appearance schedule at the Top Cow Booth (#2329) appears below (please check the booth daily for updates as the schedule is subject to change without notice). Fans should note that because of anticipated crowding issues, select artists will only be able to do a limited amount of free sketches per sitting. Fans can obtain special sketch tickets in advance for one free sketch by the artist of their choice at the Top Cow booth at the start of each day, first come, first served. As a bonus, there will be raffle drawings held throughout the weekend for Wanted movie merchandise and original sketches drawn by Top Cow artists. In addition, the new trailer for the Wanted movie on Blu-ray disc will debut on the monitors at the Top Cow booth. TOP COW 2008 SAN DIEGO COMIC-CON SIGNING AND PANEL SCHEDULE* All signings take place at the Top Cow Booth (#2329) unless otherwise noted. WEDNESDAY, JULY 23 8 – 9 p.m. Ron Marz (writer, Witchblade, Broken Trinity, Dragon Prince) THURSDAY, JULY 24 10 – 11 a.m. Joshua Hale Fialkov (writer, Pilot Season: Cyblade, Pilot Season: Alibi) Jeremy Haun (artist, Pilot Season: Alibi) 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. Marc Bernardin (writer, Pilot Season: Genius) Adam Freeman (writer, Pilot Season: Genius) Jorge Molina (artist, Pilot Season: Urban Myths) 12 – 1:30 p.m. Ron Marz (writer, Witchblade, Broken Trinity, Dragon Prince) Stjepan Sejic (artist, Witchblade, Broken Trinity) 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. Matt Hawkins (creator/writer, Lady Pendragon) Eric Basaldua (artist, Witchblade/Devi, Hunter-Killer) 2:30 – 4 p.m. Marc Silvestri (creator/artist, Witchblade, The Darkness, Cyberforce, Hunter-Killer) David Wohl (creator/writer, Witchblade, The Darkness, Aphrodite IX) Steve Firchow (colorist, Witchblade, The Darkness, Hunter-Killer) Michael Broussard (artist, The Darkness, The Darkness: Butcher, Unholy Union) Ryan Winn (inker, The Darkness) 4 – 5 p.m. Paul Dini (writer, Madame Mirage) J.G. Jones (artist, Wanted) Phil Hester (writer/artist, The Darkness, The Magdalena/Daredevil, Broken Trinity) 5 – 6 p.m. Hugh Sterbakov (co-creator/writer, Freshmen) Sheldon Mitchell (artist, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special) Rick Basaldua (inker, Witchblade/Devi, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special) Blond (colorist, Freshmen) 6 – 7 p.m. Rob Levin (writer, The Darkness: Butcher; VP – Editorial) Nelson Blake II (artist, Black Vault) William Harms (creator/writer, Impaler) Afua Richardson (artist, Pilot Season: Genius) FRIDAY, JULY 25 10 – 11 a.m. Alex Zamm (writer, Zero G) Jason Badower (artist, Zero G, True Blood) John Leekley (writer, Johnny Delgado Is Dead) Chris Moreno (artist, Johnny Delgado Is Dead) 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. J.G. Jones (artist, Wanted) Joshua Ortega (creator/writer, Necromancer) Randy Queen (creator/writer/artist, Starfall) Sarah Oates (artist, Starfall) 12 – 1 p.m. Marc Bernardin (writer, Pilot Season: Genius) Adam Freeman (writer, Pilot Season: Genius) Afua Richardson (artist, Pilot Season: Genius) Jorge Molina (artist, Pilot Season: Urban Myths) 1 – 2 p.m. SURPRISE GUEST SIGNING 1 – 2:30 p.m. Marc Silvestri (creator/artist, Witchblade, The Darkness, Cyberforce, Hunter-Killer) Eric Basaldua (artist, Witchblade/Devi, Hunter-Killer) Rick Basaldua (inker, Witchblade/Devi, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special) Steve Firchow (colorist, Witchblade, The Darkness, Hunter-Killer) 2:30 – 3:30 p.m. Hugh Sterbakov (co-creator/writer, Freshmen) Sheldon Mitchell (artist, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special) Blond (colorist, Freshmen) Troy Peteri (letterer, Freshmen) 3:30 – 4:30 p.m. B. Clay Moore (writer, Black Vault) Nelson Blake II (artist, Black Vault) William Harms (creator/writer, Impaler) Rob Levin (writer, The Darkness: Butcher; VP – Editorial) David Wohl (creator/writer, Witchblade, The Darkness, Aphrodite IX) 4 – 5 p.m. THE IMAGE COMICS SHOW - Room 7AB Featuring the biggest announcement Image Comics has made since the original seven founders formed the company! Be there as as Robert Kirkman (Walking Dead, Invincible), Marc Silvestri (Witchblade), Whilce Portacio (Spawn), Rob Liefeld (Youngblood), Erik Larsen (Savage Dragon) and Jim Valentino (Shadowline) get together to talk about where Image has gone and what the future holds. 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Randy Queen (creator/writer/artist, Starfall) Sarah Oates (artist, Starfall) Paul Dini (writer, Madame Mirage) Joshua Hale Fialkov (writer, Pilot Season: Cyblade, Pilot Season: Alibi) Jeremy Haun (artist, Pilot Season: Alibi) 5:30 – 7 p.m. TOP SECRET IMAGE COMICS SPECIAL EVENT – Image Comics Signing Area In the wake of The Image Comics Show's earth-shattering news, this event will take place at the Image signing area to commemorate the big announcement with a special gathering of creators. Features an extremely limited edition, San Diego Comic Con-only print signed by all present! 5:30 – 7 p.m. Phil Hester (writer/artist, The Darkness, The Magdalena/Daredevil, Broken Trinity) Michael Broussard (artist, The Darkness, The Darkness: Butcher, Unholy Union) Ryan Winn (inker, The Darkness) Ron Marz (writer, Witchblade, Broken Trinity, Dragon Prince) Stjepan Sejic (artist, Witchblade, Broken Trinity) SATURDAY, JULY 26 10– 11 a.m. Rob Levin (writer, The Darkness: Butcher; VP – Editorial) B. Clay Moore (writer, Black Vault) Nelson Blake II (artist, Black Vault) William Harms (creator/writer, Impaler) 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. Phil Hester (writer/artist, The Darkness, The Magdalena/Daredevil, Broken Trinity) Michael Broussard (artist, The Darkness, The Darkness: Butcher, Unholy Union) Ryan Winn (inker, The Darkness) David Wohl (creator/writer, Witchblade, The Darkness, Aphrodite IX) 12 – 1 p.m. Marc Silvestri (creator/artist, Witchblade, The Darkness, Cyberforce, Hunter-Killer) Joshua Hale Fialkov (writer, Pilot Season: Cyblade, Pilot Season: Alibi) Jeremy Haun (artist, Pilot Season: Alibi) Matt Hawkins (creator/writer, Lady Pendragon) 1 – 2 p.m. Randy Queen (creator/writer/artist, Starfall) Sarah Oates (artist, Starfall) Paul Dini (writer, Madame Mirage) J.G. Jones (artist, Wanted) 2 – 3 p.m. Marc Bernardin (writer, Pilot Season: Genius) Adam Freeman (writer, Pilot Season: Genius) Afua Richardson (artist, Pilot Season: Genius) Jorge Molina (artist, Pilot Season: Urban Myths) Ron Marz (writer, Witchblade, Broken Trinity, Dragon Prince) Stjepan Sejic (artist, Witchblade, Broken Trinity) 3 – 4 p.m. Eric Basaldua (artist, Witchblade/Devi, Hunter-Killer) Rick Basaldua (inker, Witchblade/Devi, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special) 3 – 4 p.m. HERD IT THROUGH THE BO-VINE (panel, Room 2) Marc Silvestri (CEO/creator/artist, Witchblade, The Darkness, Cyberforce) Matt Hawkins (president/COO) Filip Sablik (publisher) Rob Levin (VP – Editorial) Mel Caylo (VP – Marketing and Sales) Ron Marz (writer, Witchblade, Broken Trinity, Dragon Prince) Stjepan Sejic (artist, Witchblade, Broken Trinity) Seth Green (co-creator, Freshmen) Hugh Sterbakov (co-creator/writer, Freshmen) Paul Dini (writer, Madame Mirage) B. Clay Moore (writer, Black Vault) William Harms (creator/writer, Impaler) Joshua Hale Fialkov (writer, Pilot Season: Cyblade, Pilot Season: Alibi) Randy Queen (creator/writer/artist, Starfall) Sarah Oates (artist, Starfall) Jorge Molina (artist, Urban Myths) PLUS SURPRISE GUESTS STRAIGHT FROM HOLLYWOOD! 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. Seth Green (co-creator, Freshmen) Hugh Sterbakov (co-creator/writer, Freshmen) Clayburn Moore (owner/sculptor, CS Moore Studios) PLUS SURPRISE GUESTS STRAIGHT FROM HOLLYWOOD! SUNDAY, JULY 27 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. J.G. Jones (artist, Wanted) Joshua Ortega (creator/writer, Necromancer) David Wohl (creator/writer, Witchblade, The Darkness, Aphrodite IX) 12 – 1 p.m. Afua Richardson (artist, Pilot Season: Genius) Jorge Molina (artist, Pilot Season: Urban Myths) 1 – 2:30 p.m. Michael Broussard (artist, The Darkness, The Darkness: Butcher, Unholy Union) Eric Basaldua (artist, Witchblade/Devi, Hunter-Killer) Stjepan Sejic (artist, Witchblade, Broken Trinity) 2:30 – 3:30 p.m. B. Clay Moore (writer, Black Vault) Nelson Blake II (artist, Black Vault) Joshua Hale Fialkov (writer, Pilot Season: Cyblade, Pilot Season: Alibi) Jeremy Haun (artist, Pilot Season: Alibi) 3:30 – 4:30 p.m. Sheldon Mitchell (artist, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special) Blond (colorist, Freshmen) Rick Basaldua (inker, Witchblade/Devi, Freshmen: Summer Vacation Special) Rob Levin (writer, The Darkness: Butcher; VP – Editorial) Ryan Winn (inker, The Darkness) *SCHEDULE IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE

Aspen Comics at Comic-Con

Sadly, last month saw the untimely passing of veteran artist Michael Turner. Thankfully, Aspen Comics is doing right by him by releasing a Michael Turner tribute cover available at the Comic-Con (see above) in addition to other SDCC exclusive covers (see below). If you're going to be at Comic Con make sure you stop by the Aspen Comics booth to share your condolences. Aspen Store

Live action Cowboy Bebop in the works

If you haven't seen either the Cowboy Bebop series or show, you're missing out. One of the rare spaghetti westerns set in space (a la Firefly/Serenity or Star Wars), it told the story of Spike and his crew as they live paycheck to paycheck as bounty hunters. And the show featured one of the best uses of Ave Maria I've ever seen as well, so its got that going for it. Where is this going? Well, if you read the title you know I'm going to say that a live action movie is in the works, and IF Magazine has the details. Producer Erwin Stoff mentioned recently that work is just beginning on the film. “I’m developing Cowboy Bebop for Fox, but doing it as a live-action film, so I’m working on that at the moment,” Stoff tells iF. “I’m really excited to be working on it, and it’s in the really early stages. We just signed it the other day.” “I have such an enormous admiration for its creators, that our first and foremost concern is going to be a real degree of faithfulness to the tone of the movie, to the mix of genres, and so on and so forth,” he says. “When I met with them in Japan, one of the first things that I brought up was the experience that we had on A Scanner Darkly and how hard we worked to remain faithful to Philip K. Dick, and that was our big concern here.” It seems like the movie will be relatively accessible to mainstream audiences, which I'm not really sure is a good thing or a bad thing. When asked if viewers unfamiliar with the show would have trouble catching onto the movie, Stoff was optimistic it wouldn't be a problem. “No, I really don’t think they will,” says Scoff. “I think they haven’t [gotten aboard] with the anime because it’s had limited exposure - it’s just been on Adult Swim, and so on. I think the ability to tell this larger frame - the ability to build a world that’s iconically American in its Western nature - I don’t think so at all.” So now the big question. Who will play Spike? Let the casting rumors begin to go crazy. Live action Cowboy Bebop in the works

Action-Figure.com at Comic Con

Today begins the madness that is Comic Con. Of course, I sadly will not be attending because I'm at that age where everyone you know is getting married and of course you have to go, but I digress. If you are going, more power to you, and be sure to check out what Action-Figure.com has in store for you. Below is the full press release announcing their presence at the show. San Diego Comic Con Exclusives Mega Checklist Over 200 One of a Kind Products Launch at SDCC Surrey, UK & Parlin, NJ: Action-figure.com is proud to announce the 2008 San Diego Comic Con Exclusives Mega Checklist! Every year, Action-figure.com strives to compile the most complete list of SDCC exclusives possible to alert the public to the amazing array of products available only to show attendees. We file the exclusives into an easy to follow format so readers can make a print out take it onto the show floor. 2008 proved to be the most challenging year yet, as over 200 products have been announced across the internet and more appear every day! Products range from the licensed to the artistic to the completely insane. Here are some highlights… * Tofu the Vegan Zombie Vinyl Figure – Applehead Factory Booth 4923 - Created by a scientist looking to cure zombie-ism, Tofu is a friendly, undead vegan. "White" Tofu boasts 5 points of articulation, a fully sculpted produce base, apple crate-like window packaging and a removable tofu block. * Skeleton Jack Cosbaby – Sideshow Toys Booth 1929 – Captain Jack Sparrow is turned by the light of the moon into the cutest undead pirate ever to walk the docks! * Star Wars KUSTOMZ Camo Speeder Bike Variant Statue – Gentle Giant Booth 3513 - This super-deformed, stylized Scout trooper is wearing khaki-green gloves and sporting a Kustomz camouflage speeder bike accented with a classic shark 'Fighter Plane Nose Art' as he proudly waves a yellow flag with the peace symbol. * G.I.Joe Cobra Commander in Black Suit Figure – Hasbro Booth 3329 - The black edition 3 3/4" figure is inspired by the classic comic issue #38 in which a black suited COBRA COMMANDER rants to a crowd of COBRA followers. * Nightmare Before Christmas: Jack Skellington as Othello Figure – JUN Planning Booth 402 - The outfit design for the figure is from the video game THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS : OOGIE'S REVENGE. * Battlestar Galactica Frakkin Cylon Toaster – NBC Universal Booth 3919 – Yes..It's really a toaster…and this one burns little Cylon faces into your toast! Limited to 1000 pieces and never to be made again. * Futurama Robot Santa/ Santa Bender Two-Pack – Toynami Booth 3229 – Lock up your doors and bar your windows..it's XMAS TIME! Evil Robot Santa & his helper limited to 2000 pieces only at SDCC, essential to your Futurama collection. We could go on for another five pages, but that would cut into quality San Diego Comic Con planning time. See you at the big show! About Action-Figure.com: Action-figure.com has been a global collectibles news outlet for ten years now, covering over 250 companies world wide, often delving into coverage of movies, video games, comics and more on the topics our readers buzz about. Visit http://www.action-figure.com for more info!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

Oh the times, they are a-changing, eh? Big weekend for DC comics. BIG big weekend. I played around with the idea of writing about something other than The Dark Knight for this week’s column…but really, why bother? Is there really that much else to talk about right now? If you haven’t seen the movie yet, it means one of three things: 1.You have some other pressing priority that doesn’t warrant stopping your life to see the movie, say, winning a Nobel-peace prize. 2. You belong to some sort of cultural sect that shuns the modern world and technology or 3. You are a hateful, spiteful, strange person who has withdrawn from society and your peers. A Batman movie, especially a Batman movie starring the Joker, was going to make money, no matter what. In fact, you might even say the hardcore Batman fans were going to love it no matter what. Hell, some of them even love the old-school Adam West Batman movie. I mean, it’s kind of hard to make a bad Batman movie- you have to be trying pretty hard to screw up and make a work of art like Batman and Robin starring Arnold Schwarzenegger (among others). As Joss Whedon once commented, Batman stories “write themselves”. The characters are iconic, and what they represent is already primed in the American psyche. But the movie isn’t a bad Batman movie, as you’ve probably heard by now. In fact, it’s damn likely to go down in the history books as one of the best adaptations of a comic book created to date. The word I kept hearing used is “haunting”, and I’d say that’s accurate. The Dark Knight has more in common with movies like Se7en and Silence of the Lambs than Tim Burton’s larger than life portrayal of the caped crusader. And the cast’s performance is phenomenal. I mean, it’s got the action, it’s got a great soundtrack, everything you’d want out of a Hollywood blockbuster…but what film critics are probably going to rally behind and love is what the movie is about- human nature. A deep, disturbing psychological thriller, The Dark Knight essentially leaves you wondering about the extent to which the human race is inherently lawful and orderly. It’s like that age-old question- would anyone, when placed in the right circumstances, become a psychotic killer? Will anyone, when push come to shove, break the law? Does everyone have a breaking point, at some varying level of intensity? And, like a lot of classic, acclaimed films of our time, I don’t think the movie tries to force an answer down your throat. I mean, we’d all like to believe that at the end of the day that Batman and Gordon are representative of 99% of the population and will do the right thing even though it’s difficult no matter what. But I don’t think the film is aimed at making sure you, the viewer, MUST believe such an idea by the movie’s conclusion. It JUST poses the question- what do you believe, about human nature? And now, I’m left to pose the question: wouldn’t it be freaking awesome if EVERYTHING DC did was of the same quality and magnitude as the film we all just saw!? I mean, when I left the theater, my first thoughts were actually along the lines of: “Holy crap, how can they make a better Batman movie than what I just watched?” What I really want is some absolute assurance that the next film will be directed by Christopher Nolan and will be at least as good as the original in quality, thoughtfulness, and production values. But can it be done? Can they keep this going and not drop the ball? It’s not an easy act to follow, by any means. But yeah, Batman is certainly DC’s flagship (along with Superman)- but wouldn’t it be incredible if all of their characters got the same treatment? I mean, what if Michael Bay produced (PRODUCED, not directed) a Green Lantern movie? Or if James Cameron did the next Superman film? Or if Joss Whedon did Wonder Woman (God dammit!!)? What if everything you saw had the kind of stark realism that The Dark Knight did (to one extent or another)? You really begin to glimpse a little bit about what makes DC comics tick. I mean sure, they’ve got aliens, they’ve got magic, all that stuff…but while Marvel has this whole mythology and landscape that their characters live inside of, I always get this feeling that DC likes to stick to two elements: 1. Good action and 2. Philosophy. There’s a maturity to a lot of their writing- it’s a lot less epic-Star Wars Good vs. Evil, and a lot more “you just ingested a whole lot of pop-philosophy while you were reading this comic and it went down smooth because you didn’t even realize that that’s what you were doing” kind of thing. Personally, I’d love to see a Green Arrow movie. Terribly under-rated character and the story lends itself easily to the kind of format that Nolan has been working with. Of course, DC has already had some big hits with their imprint-titles. I know there are some die-hard purists who bitch about V for Vendetta, but, Jesus, don’t be that guy, you know? It was a great movie and what Alan Moore was writing about was clear. (Sidenote: the original story didn’t implicate V to be any one character described in it, but in fact alluded to the possibility that “he” might have been several. It didn’t even rule out the possibility that Evey herself, Natalie Portman’s character, WAS V and she was having a dissociated conversation with “herself” through the whole book. Creepy.) And I have to say, I have been very, very skeptical about the creation of a Watchmen movie. But the trailer blows me away. While hardly definitive proof that it’ll be a good movie, I’m taken a back at just how true-to-form the character’s costumes and casting are. I’m totally stoked. But still, DC has dragged its heels green-lighting other projects. I just hope nothing gets lost in the mix, like Marvel has with Daredevil, Fantastic Four and some others.

Zenoscope at Comic-Con

Zenoscope has announced their signings and presence plan for San Diego Comic Con, and its quite the lineup. Below is the press release as well as some covers to look out for. ZENESCOPE ANNOUNCES COMIC CON INTERNATIONAL PLANS

Come join Zenescope Entertainment in San Diego at Booth #2104 next week as they unveil several brand new issues and exclusives at this years highly anticipated Comic Con International.

Included in Zenescope's debut lineup:

BEYOND WONDERLAND #1 Comic Con Exclusive limited to 750 with cover art by superstar artist David Finch (New Avengers, Spider-Man Unlimited)

1001 ARABIAN NIGHTS: The Adventures of Sinbad #2 Comic Con Exclusive limited to 750 with cover art by David Nakayama (Marvel Adventures)

GRIMM FAIRY TALES #29 Comic Con Exclusive limited to 500 with cover art by Renato Camilo.

Another title premiering at Comic Con is the much anticipated psychological thriller THE STRAW MEN, adapted from the best-selling Michael Marshall novel that Stephen King called 'Scary as hell' and 'A masterpiece.' With artwork by Brett Weldele (Southland Tales) and covers by David Seidman (Se7en). "[The Straw Men] is a thinking-man's horror comic, a thrill-ride for readers who simply demand more from their comics. If I could, I would add it to everyone's pull list." --Jeff Marsick, Newsarama

Appearing at Zenescope Booth #2104: David Nakayama (1001 Arabian Nights, Grimm Fairy Tales, Return To Wonderland cover artist) Friday 3-4pm, Saturday 4-5pm and Sunday from 1-2pm

Eric Basaldua (Return To Wonderland, Beyond Wonderland, Grimm Fairy Tales, 1001 Arabian Nights cover artist) TBA

Daniel Liester (Return To Wonderland, Beyond Wonderland interior artist) Saturday 11am-1pm & Sunday Noon-1pm

Raven Gregory (writer Return To Wonderland, Grimm Fairy Tales) Thursday & Friday 2-3pm

Axel Medellin (The Piper interior artist) Thursday 3-4pm & Sunday 3-4pm

Nei Ruffino (Zenescope colorist: Return To Wonderland, Beyond Wonderland, Grimm Fairy Tales) Thursday Noon-1pm, Friday 4-5pm, Sunday 4-5pm

Ralph Tedesco (Grimm Fairy Tales, Se7en writer) TBA

Joe Brusha (Grimm Fairy Tales, Straw Men writer) TBA *Also in attendance will be the lovely Zene-booth babes who will be available for pictures all weekend long!

As always go to www.myspace.com/zenescopecomics or www.zenescope.com for convention photos and for more information on Zenescope's titles.

Michael Rymer confirmed as Witchblade director

Apparently Bloody Disgusting was ahead of the curve, as they reported this a while back. But I guess its not news until it hits more mainstream outlets such as Variety. In any case, Michael Rymer has been confirmed to be the director of the upcoming film adaptation of Witchblade. You may know of Rymer's travails as director and producer of the Battlestar Galactica series. He will join Gary Hamilton, Nigel Odell, Scott Mitchell Rosenerg and Steve Squillante as producer, while Marc Silvestri, Matt Hawkins, Rich Marincic and Randy Greenberg will take on the executive producer roles. There is no release date (other than 2009) or story details as of yet, but stay tuned. Michael Rymer confirmed as director of Witchblade

DC Universe Online pics

I'm not so keen on the whole MK vs. DC Universe game due out later this year, but DC Universe Online is something I can get behind. In case you're unaware, DC Universe Online is basically a MMO based in the DC Universe, with the catch being you can't play as a marquis character, but you can fight with them or against them. That is an easy solution to the "everyone wants to be problem, while still maintaining the feel of the DC Universe. So regardless of whether or not you're intrigued by the game or not, at the very least admire the pretty screenshots that Quicksave has up on their website. There are a few landscape shots in addition to some character shots featuring Batman, Superman, Joker, Harley Quinn, Robin, Green Lantern and Bane. Even if the game is awful (which I doubt) at the very least it will look pretty nice. DC Universe Online images

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

New Arrivals: July 23, 2008

The pick this week is a milestone and a recognition of my childhood. Uncanny X-Men #500 is finally upon us, and its worth picking up if you care anything about comics. To reach 500 issues is truly a milestone, and for a comic featuring a group as revered as the X-Men makes it even more special. And of course, don't forget to pick up the nearly thousand variant covers (ok, that number's a little high, but there's a LOT of variant covers...below is the Greg Land variant). Enjoy! New Arrivals: July 23, 2008

The Dark Knight Game confirmed?

I promise that my affinity for everything Batman will subside, but honestly how can you not respect the character with The Dark Knight being quite possibly the greatest comic book movie of all time and wrecking the box office? And with that being said, wouldn't you be happy to know that a game is in the works? Gary Oldman let loose in a recent interview with Kristin Holt as part of a preview for The Dark Knight that a game is in the works, but in not so many words. He joked in the interview about a "small scene in the game about his character on a roof top all alone while Batman jumped off the building and opened his wings to fly off and save the city." If that's not confirmation I don't know what is. I would expect the game to be released alongside the DVD (and Blu-ray) release of the film sometime around December most likely.