Thursday, June 30, 2011

8-Bit Thought Bubbles


So my understanding is that there is some real misunderstanding currently about World of Warcraft supposedly going F2P. Well let me assure you, that isn’t the case….yet. I have no idea why the media is touting the current offer from WoW as F2P. If that is the case then Warhammer Online is F2P also, but I must have missed those headlines.

You’ll remember that way back in a previous article after PAX East I mentioned that I do think F2P is going to become the model that all MMOs – and likely computer games in general – follow in the near future. I simply don’t think there is another viable option given the scope and quality of the games already offered in this way. Let’s try to cut through the misinformation though so that you can find out what is truly out there.

World of Warcraft now has an unlimited free trial. Before they have offered both 7 and 14-day trials but now they’ve just said you can play up to level 20 forever. Once you hit 20, that is it, you can go no further. There are also various other restriction on the account to prevent creative people from exploiting this and farming whatever it is you can farm in WoW at level 20. I feel like a giant such as WoW doing this indicates something bigger than they are willing to admit is happening with the industry.

The list of F2P MMOs online at this point is staggering. A quick look at Freemmorpglist will show you that. Most of these are shabby in quality but it does show an industry trend when former AAA titles like Age of Conan shows up in the space. In the good old days games that hemorrhaged users just got shut down. Now even a failed experiment like APB can come back in some bastardized F2P form to have another go at success via microtransactions.

I think the bigger problem is that now you are getting hybrids of the original F2P games that Nexon mastered with games like Maplestory, Combat Arms and Vindictus. Now you have games that come very close to, if not surpass the quality of, a game showing its age like WoW in titles such as Lord of the Rings Online, Guild Wars and Dungeons and Dragons Online. These games all have their issues but they are technically “free to play.”

Are they really? Guild Wars simply eliminated the monthly fee but the client is still not free to play. You're buying the game for presumably $50 and then buying subsequent expansions whenever they come out if you please. Free to KEEP playing, but not free to play. Warhammer Online and WoW have adopted the unlimited free trial that just restricts how far you can progress. Anyone who thinks that level 20 is “getting a quarter of WoW for free” doesn’t know what they are talking about. Level grinding and content always gets longer the further into the game you go. Getting to level 20 is EASY.

Age of Conan – a game I was once very fond of – has adopted and even more confusing model that I’ve read about and still don’t fully understand. You can play for free with a few races and classes, but then have to pay to upgrade to other things and certain dungeons and areas. People who already subscribed but choose to go free can still keep existing characters but I’m sure micropurchasing will rule the land soon enough.

Even the mighty valve has hopped on the F2P train with Team Fortress 2 going free. I guess they are counting on people buying massive amounts of hats! It is also possible that a game that old is just not selling anymore and the revenue lost can be made up for by a few new people buying hats. Yes- hats are important enough to TF2 to mention in three straight sentences.

In the end I’m still enjoying Rift despite its subscription model and I know that Star Wars: The Old Republic will start off strong due to name recognition even if it won’t be free to play. I do think this is the future of PC gaming though. If a publisher can get me hooked on a game odds are I’ll spend money on it at some point.

The most recent example of alienating a fanbase and doing it wrong can be seen in Eve Online and the current fiasco over cosmetic micropurchasing options when it flies in the face of what your consumer sees in the game. It's hard to ignore the overwhelming feeling that when the king – and don’t get yourself by thinking that WoW ISN’T the king – starts doing unlimited trials to lure people into addiction and subscription, something fundamental is changing.

In the end I’m not sure what my point is. Perhaps I’m just trying to convince myself that this isn’t a bad thing for the industry. It gives me the option to TRY A GAME and since releasing a good demo is apparently dead, that's what F2P represents to me. It's never REALLY free to be competitive, but if you just want to play it is hard to argue this is a bad thing.

It is worth repeating what I read on another site though and I wish I could give them credit – probably Rock Paper Shotgun – why not just bring back demos?

Review - Charismagic #2


Aspen Comics is still sticking to the notion that "Everything you know about magic will vanish" in Charismagic #2. The thing is that with this issue it's more than just knowledge about magic that's vanished. Things are about to get weird.

Everyone in Charismagic #2 has vanished, leaving Hank and his newly speaking cat Sparkles coping with the recent events. Hank is quickly realizing that there's definitely something bigger at play that, mainly because Sparkles is talking. This is quickly followed by Hank being threatened by a somewhat menacing beast looking to feast on him, prompting Hank to show that he still has a few tricks up his sleeve. It's clear in the world of Charismagic that the darker forces of magic are looking to establish dominance in the human world.

Hector is (presumably) in the dimension where the other humans were teleported to and is managing to hold his own. He's a strong enough character that he can still hold his own against magical beasts with human resourcefulness. Meanwhile, Samsun is wreaking havoc in the United Kingdom and taking out his own magic cohorts. The entire issue leads up to encounter between Hank and Sudana where Hank has to set aside his reservations yet again about trusting random beings to help him through the craziness that is the new world.

Writer and creator Vince Hernandez is crafting an interesting tale with Charismagic. So far the theme of the series is shaping up to be a tribute to the abilities of one man in saving the human race. What's interesting is that Hank himself might have some special powers flowing through him; special powers that Sudana will no doubt enlighten him on in the third issue. Khary Randolph's illustrations are colored nicely by Emilio Lopez and have a fantasy quality to them with clean and well defined lines. Even the letters by Josh Reed fit within the concept of magic.

I liked Charismagic #2. Right now it's still flexing some imaginative muscle and is posing some intriguing questions that I want to see answered. How big of a threat is Samsun? How strong is Hank? How much will Sudana play a role in the grand scheme of things? Hernandez is taking the story in a fresh direction and it'll be fun to see how it plays out over the next few issues.

The book hits stores July 13 and you can check out some interiors below.






Lucille Follows Blankets From Top Shelf


Top Shelf Productions has a penchant for putting out unique works. Some of their more popular books include Blankets, Essex County and Swallow Me Whole. Their newest title, Lucille, follows two teenagers in Lucille and Arthur. The two of them are struggling with complex legacies inherited from their families that include illness and pride, and despair and hope.

It was originally published in France and now marks the English-language debut for Ludovic Debeurme. Lucille features themes of anorexia, alcoholism and adolescence and is even rife with the awkwardness of life and has won René Goscinny Prize and the Angoulême Essential Award. It sounds depressing but shouldn't a book challenge you? The 544 page (!) deluxe softcover with french flaps comes in at 6.625" x 8.875"

Comic shops and bookstores that sell out of LUCILLE can re-order with the Diamond code FEB11-1168 or the ISBN 978-1-60309-073-5, and you can check out LUCILLE at the Top Shelf site here.

Full press release and a video introduction to the title after the jump.

In the tradition of BLANKETS, ESSEX COUNTY, and SWALLOW ME WHOLE comes the next literary masterpiece from Top Shelf Productions: LUCILLE by Ludovic Debeurme.

With the book arriving in stores worldwide this week, we present a video introduction to Ludovic Debeurme and his masterful book LUCILLE, featuring interviews and musical performances by Ludovic as well as praise from fans like Joseph Ghosn, editorial director of GQ/Vogue/Glamour France, and Angouleme Grand Prix winner Charles Berberian (directed by Victor Claude):



Description:

Originally published in France to overwhelming critical acclaim, including the René Goscinny Prize and the Angoulême Essential Award, LUCILLE is the English-languge debut for Ludovic Debeurme, a young master of cartooning. It's a love story full of tragedy and hope, following two teenagers who cling to each other amid illness and grief. Arthur is suffocating under the painful legacy of his alcoholic father, but when he encounters shy Lucille in a treatment center for anorexia, they form an instant connection and set off for a journey across Europe, hoping against all odds to make their own destiny.

Comic shops and bookstores that sell out of LUCILLE can re-order with the Diamond code FEB11-1168 or the ISBN 978-1-60309-073-5, and you can check out LUCILLE at the Top Shelf site here.

And here's what people are already saying about LUCILLE:

"As the story develops, the characters become more complex and the art more gracefully realistic... It evokes great sympathy for its characters, young and old." -- Library Journal

"Moving and rich." -- GQ France

"The characters are remarkable... Debeurme gets underneath what makes these young lovers tick, and is realistic enough to realize that they're too inexperienced and impulsive to fix each other. Still, the love affair in Lucille burns bright, illuminating two lives." -- The AV Club

"Lucille impresses as much by the power of its drawing as by the subtlety of its dialogue and plotting... it alternates tender moments of joy with scenes that evoke tears... Tremendous." -- Didier Pasamonik, ActuaBD

"Lucille is a credit to Top Shelf's catalog of impressive graphic novels and deserves the attention of readers wanting some of the most innovative sequential art published today." -- Graphic Novel Reporter

"For a story about the search for freedom, to be yourself, Debeurme's approach makes the most of the freedom of the comics medium. ...It's a wonderful, satisfying experience in itself to read and savour and easily one of the truly unmissable bande dessinée translations of the year." -- Paul Gravett, author of Graphic Novels: Stories to Change Your Life

"The type of story the graphic novel was meant for." -- Playback:STL

Avengelyne #1 Gets New Cover


Angels bearing down upon you with a sword coming down with them requires you duck. If you can't quite envision that image to prepare yourself for just such a scenario, the above variant cover for Avengelyne #1 by Joe Benitez should be a good primer.

Rob Liefeld's 15-year-old creation is being brought back to relevance by writer Mark Poulton and artist Owen Gieni. The new creative team takes the redesigned superhero through the sin-filled streets of New York City. It's up to Avengelyne to stop NYC's newest serial killer, Torment, while the Red Dragon has chosen a new human host.

Avengelyne #1 will hit stores July 20. Full press release after the jump.

AVENGELYNE SLAYS WITH A NEW COVER
Joe Benitez Adds a New Variant Cover for Avengelyne #1

Berkeley, CA – 28 June, 2011 – To mark the return of one of Rob Liefeld’s classic characters to the world of comics, acclaimed cover artist Joe Benitez (Lady Mechanika, Green Hornet, GI Joe) brings his unique style to a special variant cover for AVENGELYNE #1.

Created by Image Comics founder Rob Liefeld over 15 years ago, the fallen angel Avengelyne’s quest for redemption is brought back into the forefront of comics by writer Mark Poulton (Koni Waves) and artist Owen Gieni (Sore Thumbs). Together, this new creative team takes this freshly redesigned supernatural heroine on an epic and tantalizing adventure through the sin-filled streets of New York City. Will Avengelyne be able to stop New York’s newest serial killer, Torment, and who has the mysterious Red Dragon chosen as his newest human host? The adventure begins this July in AVENGELYNE #1, only from Image Comics!

The Joe Benitez variant of AVENGELYNE #1 (MAY110434), along with variant covers by series creator Rob Liefeld (MAY110432) and interior artist Owen Gieni (MAY110433), will go on sale July 20th, 2011 for $2.99 and is available for order now.

ABOUT IMAGE COMICS
Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Image has since gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. Image currently has five partners: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino. It consists of five major houses: Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline, Skybound and Image Central. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable. It offers science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. For more information, visit www.imagecomics.com.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Review - Lady Mechanika #2


It's probably been an agonizing six months or so for Lady Mechanika fans. Aspen hyped the series last summer and it's been six months since the first issue was released, leaving fans of the strong introduction wondering where did Lady Mechanika go? Well good things come to those who wait as Lady Mechanika #2 is finally hitting stores July 13. Will it be worth the wait?

"The Mystery of the Mechanical Corpse" is the story arc of note here as Lady Mechanika contines to investigate, well, a mechanical corpse. Lady Mechanika #1 opened with a young girl on the run who just so happens to have metal claws where her arms and hands should be. She has a proclivity for violence and unleashes said claws on a crew of soldiers after her.

The soldiers are lead by Catherine, a commander of sorts who is credited with rescuing Lady Mechanika a long time ago. This issue presents their somewhat strenuous relationship and characterizes Catherine as a leader who hides behind her power. Naturally, that's the best quality in a leader. Lady Mechanika's path crosses with Catherine's in her investigation of the girl and information about Lady Mechanika's origin.

This was the bulk of the issue- Lady Mechanika and Catherine hashing out their past. Sure there is some gunplay and flying machines, but other than that this issue is clearly moving pieces into place. The reader is also introduced to Cain (aka The Engineer) through the drunk and frightened Mr. Lewis. The Engineer will no doubt play a pivotal role in explaining the origins of Lady Mechanika, but as of now the reader has to be content with fearing his power.

The star of the show here is Joe Benitez, but he's also most likely the reason you're reading the book anyway. He pulls triple duty in creating, writing and illustrating Lady Mechanika #2 and the art is jawdropping. Peter Steigerwald uses bold colors that also accent the storytelling very well, while the lettering by Josh Reed is diverse.

The writing is more on the expository side though, which is great for telling the facts but leaves little to the imagination. The issue is a little wordy and at the end we really don't know that much more about Lady Mechanika. Yes, Cain/The Engineer seems foreboding, but all you get is a couple of panels of him in a laboratory. He will no doubt play a larger role, but it would've been nice to have spent a bit more time on him and less on Lady Mechanika/Catherine.

One thing that the series (so far) has done exceptionally well is capture the fear of uncertainty. Lady Mechanika is a steampunk comic and is set in a time when things couldn't be as easily explained. Girls with steel claws, flying contraptions and an engineer who infuses robotics into humans is scary enough as it is, but when you're only catching glimpses and whispers the uncertainty makes it even scarier. Hopefully this theme carries on throughout the course of the series.

July 13 is the scheduled ship date. While you've waited this long for the next issue, you don't have to wait long for a sneak peek below.





Frank Miller Working on Holy Terror


Frank Miller has been pretty quiet as of late. His proverbial plate is about to get a little fuller thanks to a recent partnership with Legendary Comics to create Holy Terror, the long awaited project that's languished in development purgatory.

The work was once known as Holy Terror, Batman and pitted Batman against al Qaeda. Clearly it's been changed to focus on The Fixer, a new hero fighting terror. The graphic novel is an action thriller that features Miller's trademark black and white visual style.

“It has been my extreme pleasure and honor to have worked so closely with Frank for over 20 years now,” says Schreck. “HOLY TERROR finds Frank at the top of his game. A fast paced, biting commentary on our uncertain and volatile times, told with some of the most gut-wrenching, iconic images he's ever produced.”

The 120 page hardcover will feature spot-color interiors presented in a 10 x 13 landscape format. The $29.99 book will be in stores September 14. Full press release after the jump.

LEGENDARY COMICS TO PUBLISH HOLY TERROR GRAPHIC NOVEL BY RENOWNED COMICS CREATOR FRANK MILLER

Comic Scheduled for September 14, 2011 Release

Burbank, CA – June 28, 2011 – Legendary Comics has partnered with Frank Miller, the iconic writer and artist of SIN CITY, 300 and THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, to publish HOLY TERROR, a dark, uncompromising superhero tale for the modern era. The announcement was made today by Bob Schreck, Editor-in-Chief of Legendary Comics.

In HOLY TERROR, join The Fixer, a brand new, hard-edged hero as he battles terror. The graphic novel is a no-holds-barred action thriller told in Miller’s trademark high-contrast, black-and-white visual style, which seizes the political zeitgeist by the throat and doesn’t let go until the last page.

“It has been my extreme pleasure and honor to have worked so closely with Frank for over 20 years now,” says Schreck. “HOLY TERROR finds Frank at the top of his game. A fast paced, biting commentary on our uncertain and volatile times, told with some of the most gut-wrenching, iconic images he's ever produced.”

HOLY TERROR is a 120 page hardcover graphic novel with spot-color interiors presented in a 10 x 13 landscape format. Distributed by Diamond Books, HOLY TERROR retails for $29.99 and will be in stores on September 14.

About Frank Miller

Frank Miller is one of the seminal creative talents who sparked today’s onslaught of motion pictures featuring comic book characters & concepts. He single-handedly re-defined the presentation of comic book characters and heroic fiction with his grand-daddy of graphic novels, THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS and his other graphic novels, turned box-office hits, include 300 and SIN CITY (the film version of which Miller co-directed with Robert Rodriguez), proving that success does not always come wrapped in spandex. Miller also created RONIN, and wrote BATMAN: YEAR ONE, BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT STRIKES AGAIN, and ALL-STAR BATMAN AND ROBIN THE BOY WONDER, all for DC Comics, and THE BIG GUY AND RUSTY THE BOY ROBOT, HARD BOILED, and MARTHA WASHINGTON, at Dark Horse Comics. The motion picture, THE SPIRIT, marked Miller's solo feature film directorial debut.

About Legendary Entertainment

Legendary Entertainment is a leading media company with film, television and comics divisions dedicated to owning, producing and delivering content to mainstream audiences with a targeted focus on the powerful fandom demographic. Through complete or joint ownership, Legendary is building a library of marquee media properties and has established itself as a trusted brand which consistently delivers high-quality, commercial entertainment including some of the world's most popular intellectual property. Among the wholly-owned film projects that Legendary Entertainment is currently developing in-house are Pacific Rim, directed by Guillermo del Toro; an adaptation of the phenomenally successful interactive game universe Warcraft; Godzilla, based on Toho Company’s famed character; Warren Ellis’ Gravel; and Mass Effect, based on Electronic Arts and BioWare’s hit videogame franchise. Legendary has co-produced more than 25 Warner Bros. films, including the recent smash hit, The Hangover Part II, which holds the distinction of posting the highest opening weekend gross ever for a comedy film, the critically acclaimed Inception, which has been a box office smash grossing more than $825 million worldwide, as well as the global blockbusters Clash of the Titans ($493 million worldwide), The Dark Knight ($1 billion worldwide), 300 ($456 million worldwide) and The Hangover ($467 million worldwide).

Elephantmen Flip Book Featured in The Walking Dead


The zombies in The Walking Dead. For instance, why don't they realize the Elephantmen lurking in their midsts? The Walking Dead #86 will be a flipbook that features a 23-page introduction to Elephantmen: Man and Elephantman #1.

"I'm a big fan of Richard's storytelling," Robert Kirkman added. "This is quality science fiction, and it's one of those titles that everyone should be reading because it just keeps getting better and better."

The Richard Starkings written, Alex Medillin illustrated title has been getting a lot of action in The Walking Dead. You wouldn't necessarily think there was much overlap between the two properties, but that shows how much you know.

"Even though THE WALKING DEAD and ELEPHANTMEN seem to be very different, I know from talking to fans at shows that we have a big crossover readership," explained Starkings. "Both books are character-driven science fantasy stories featuring leads who keep their feet firmly on the ground. It makes perfect sense to offer THE WALKING DEAD readers a sample issue of ELEPHANTMEN on the house. As for me (no kidding), THE WALKING DEAD is the one book I never miss reading month after month!"

The Walking Dead #86 hits stores today while Elephantmen: Questionable Things TPB hits stores July 20th for $24.99. Full press release after the jump.


ELEPHANTMEN TAKE A TURN

The Walking Dead Readers Will Flip Over Elephantmen: Man and Elephantman

Berkeley, CA – 28 June 2011 – The latest issue of Robert Kirkman's immensely popular original series THE WALKING DEAD will be presented as a flip book, offering readers a preview of the Eagle Award winning ELEPHANTMEN, industry legend Richard Starkings' acclaimed science fiction series.

On the flip side of THE WALKING DEAD #86, the 23-page introduction into the world of ELEPHANTMEN has been taken from ELEPHANTMEN: MAN AND ELEPHANTMAN #1, an issue that proved a great jumping on point for readers who had yet to pick up the series. Axel Medellin provides the ongoing title with sexy and colorful painted art, and while his style sharply contrasts Charlie Adlard's stark, realistic black and white pages for THE WALKING DEAD, Kirkman and Starkings know that the two series share many of the same readers.

"Even though THE WALKING DEAD and ELEPHANTMEN seem to be very different, I know from talking to fans at shows that we have a big crossover readership," explained Starkings. "Both books are character-driven science fantasy stories featuring leads who keep their feet firmly on the ground. It makes perfect sense to offer THE WALKING DEAD readers a sample issue of ELEPHANTMEN on the house. As for me (no kidding), THE WALKING DEAD is the one book I never miss reading month after month!"

"I'm a big fan of Richard's storytelling," Robert Kirkman added. "This is quality science fiction, and it's one of those titles that everyone should be reading because it just keeps getting better and better."

Three volumes of ELEPHANTMEN have already been published in handsome hardcover and trade paperback editions. The fourth and most recent volume, ELEPHANTMEN: QUESTIONABLE THINGS is available in hardcover now, with a trade paperback edition going on sale in July.

THE WALKING DEAD #86 (APR110529), a 48-page black and white horror comic for $2.99, will be available at a comic store near you on June 29, 2011, while ELEPHANTMEN: QUESTIONABLE THINGS TP (JUL110463) will be available for sale on July 20th for $24.99. ELEPHANTMEN: MAN AND ELEPHANTMAN #1 VAR CVR 2ND PTG (FEB118098) is still available for reorder.

ABOUT IMAGE COMICS

Image Comics is a comic book and graphic novel publisher founded in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Image has since gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. Image currently has five partners: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri and Jim Valentino. It consists of five major houses: Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline, Skybound and Image Central. Image publishes comics and graphic novels in nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable. It offers science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. For more information, visit www.imagecomics.com.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

New Arrivals: June 29, 2011


With a name like Dark Horse you would expect some titles to have a more sinister feel to them. Supernatural Noir is one of those titles that is a bit on the dark side of Dark Horse.

Various writers bring you tales of a hitman who kills with coincidence, a detective caught in a war between two wars and a man who's appetites hide a darker secret. Editor Ellen Datlow oversees works from Brian Evenson, Joe R. Lansdale, Caitlin R. Kiernan, Nick Mamatas, Gregory Frost, Jeffrey Ford, and many more.

The title is a massive 336 pages and will set you back $19.99.


Enjoy!

New Arrivals: June 29, 2011

Aspen Announces Partnership with Graphicly


The digital comics train is gaining steam and Aspen is jumping onboard. Last week, the publisher announced a partnership with iVerse Media. This week, the publisher just announced a new partnership with Graphicly.

Aspen will be releasing an initial wave of different titles on the Graphicly app, highlighted by the first volumes of both of their two popular flagship series: Michael Turner’s Fathom and Soulfire.

“We can’t think of a better way to kick off summer than by bringing Aspen Comics to Graphicly,” said Micah Baldwin, CEO of Graphicly. “We’re stoked to bring such an expansive library like the one Aspen Comics has to offer, and make it even easier for Aspen and their creators to connect with their fans”

Other Aspen titles on the platform will include Aspen Extended Edition (1-2), Executive Assistant: Iris Volume One, Fathom: “Against All Odds” (Single Issue), Fathom: Dawn of War, Fathom: Volume One, Fathom: Cannon Hawke, Fathom: Kiani Volume One, Michael Turner Tribute Edition (Single Issue), Shrugged Volume One and Soulfire Volume One . This is just the first wave of Aspen titles on the platform as the publisher plans to expand their presence with more titles added.

Full press release after the jump.

ASPEN COMICS BRINGS THEIR CATALOGUE OF TITLES TO GRAPHICLY

Los Angeles, CA – Graphicly is teaming up with Aspen Comics this summer to bring the publishers’ growing catalogue of books to their impressive digital platform. Aspen will be releasing an initial wave of different titles on the Graphicly app, highlighted by the first volumes of both of their two popular flagship series: Michael Turner’s Fathom and Soulfire.

“We can’t think of a better way to kick off summer than by bringing Aspen Comics to Graphicly,” said Micah Baldwin, CEO of Graphicly. “We’re stoked to bring such an expansive library like the one Aspen Comics has to offer, and make it even easier for Aspen and their creators to connect with their fans”

In addition to Michael Turner’s Fathom and Soulfire, Graphicly will also offer Aspen’s Executive Assistant: Iris and Shrugged series in the initial launch of titles available. Aspen is also releasing a digital-exclusive title, Fathom: “Against All Odds”, with their proceeds from this special one-shot issue going to the National Wildlife Federation. The full list of Aspen titles available in the first wave includes single issues and complete volume sets of the following popular series:

Aspen Extended Edition (1-2)
Executive Assistant: Iris Volume One
Fathom: “Against All Odds” (Single Issue)
Fathom: Dawn of War
Fathom: Volume One
Fathom: Cannon Hawke
Fathom: Kiani Volume One
Michael Turner Tribute Edition (Single Issue)
Shrugged Volume One
Soulfire Volume One

Titles are available now on Graphicly.com as well as through the Graphicly applications for the Apple iPhone, iPad and Android devices.


About Aspen Comics

Aspen MLT, Inc. is an entertainment publishing company founded in January 2003 by superstar comic artist Michael Turner. Aspen produces the popular series Fathom, the hit fantasy series Soulfire, the smash hit Lady Mechanika, the acclaimed series Shrugged, as well as new series such as Broken Pieces, Charismagic, Dellec, Executive Assistant: Iris, Mindfield, and The Scourge in association with Valhalla Motion Pictures. As well as publishing their own line of books, Aspen MLT Inc. continually collaborates on the comic industry’s most exciting titles including Marvel’s Civil War and World War Hulk, and DC Comics’ Identity Crisis and Brightest Day events. Aspen has branched into other media forms and continues to do so. Aspen has produced original content and designs for such clients as Marvel Comics, DC Comics, NBC, American Express and more.


About Graphicly

Graphicly is a cutting-edge entertainment digital content delivery system and community platform, providing an immersive solution to tell, share and collaborate around story. With close to 200 publishers, from major publishers such as Aspen, Marvel Comics, Archie Comics, BOOM! Studios, Top Cow and IDW Publishing to indie creators from around the globe, Graphicly is the leading story telling and sharing platform online. The Graphicly Network includes dozens of leading websites and blogs, mobile applications including the iPhone, iPad and Android; A desktop AIR application, and an industry leading HTML5 web app.

For more information, please visit http://graphicly.com

Stan Lee Joins Yoshiki and Todd McFarlane on Blood Red Dragon


Stan Lee. Yoshiki. Todd McFarlane. All three names should be synonymous with awesomeness at this point, but what if there was a way to make them even more awesome? What is the three of them collaborated on a brand new comic set to debut at Comic-Con next month?

Blood Red Dragon is that comic and is based on the trio of talent at the top. The three will be joined by writer Jon Goff in a panel discussion at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront hotel in the Indigo room on Thursday, July 21st from 1pm-2pm, followed by press interviews from 2-3:30pm.

"I am extremely excited about Blood Red Dragon," said Lee. "Yoshiki¹s
exceptional musical abilities, visual flair and passionate humanitarianism
make him an amazing and inspiring collaborator and I think readers will
experience every bit of that in the comics."

Added Yoshiki, "Working with the one-and-only Stan Lee has been an
incredible experience for me. He is truly a genius and one of the best
storytellers living today. I¹m excited with the results of our efforts and
look forward to the response from readers and music lovers around the
world."

³Being able to collaborate with creators on a global level is always a
thrill," said McFarlane. "Working with two big names, like Yoshiki and Stan Lee, I hope I'm able to add a little bit of my touch to a book that my, Stan's, but most importantly Yoshiki¹s fans will enjoy. At the same time, I hope this book helps introduce Yoshiki to fans that don¹t know him on American shores."

Blood Red Dragon Issue #0 focuses on the origin of an ancient and benevolent force, locked in an epic battle with the dark armies of Oblivion. The Blood Red Dragon is on the verge of being awakened to protect Earth, prompting the agents of Oblivion to launch an assault against musicians the world over as music is the key to waking him. As he performs in front of a large crowd during the opening show of a massive world tour, drummer and keyboardist Yoshiki comes face-to-face with his destiny, experiencing a transformation that will forever change his life‹and possibly the fate of the world.

This project should be rife with comics, music and probably even a movie or the like. Full press release after the jump.

POW! ENTERTAINMENT¹S STAN LEE, MUSIC SUPERSTAR YOSHIKI, AND WORLD RENOWNED
COMIC BOOK ARTIST TODD MCFARLANE TO UNVEIL NEW COMIC BOOK SERIES ³BLOOD RED
DRAGON² AT COMIC-CON 2011

June 27, 2011, Los Angeles, CA‹Stan Lee, Chief Creative Officer of POW!
Entertainment (OTCQB: POWN), music superstar and humanitarian Yoshiki, and
world renowned comic book artist Todd McFarlane will unveil the debut issue
of the highly anticipated comic book series Blood Red Dragon at Comic-Con International on Thursday, July 21, 2011. Lee, McFarlane and Yoshiki, on whom the comic¹s central superhero is based, will present the first
installment of Blood Red Dragon, which features a surprise and first-of-its-kind publishing innovation that combines the unique skills of these three world-renowned artists. Lee, McFarlane, and Yoshiki will join established and respected comic book writer Jon Goff in a panel discussion
at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront hotel in the Indigo room on Thursday, July
21st from 1pm-2pm, followed by press interviews from 2-3:30pm.

Blood Red Dragon Issue #0, the first in the series published by Todd McFarlane Productions, focuses on the origin of an ancient and benevolent force, locked in an epic battle with the dark armies of Oblivion. Creative
expression and destiny collide, as once in a generation an individual is
born with the potential to unlock the awesome might of the Blood Red Dragon, thus channeling a power beyond comprehension and assuming the mantle of Earth¹s protector. When agents of Oblivion discover that the key to accessing the Blood Red Dragon¹s energy lays in music‹the melodic heart of the human spirit, they launch a series of violent attacks on musicians
across the globe. As he performs in front of a large crowd during the
opening show of a massive world tour, drummer and keyboardist Yoshiki comes
face-to-face with his destiny, experiencing a transformation that will
forever change his life‹and possibly the fate of the world.

"I am extremely excited about Blood Red Dragon," said Lee. "Yoshiki¹s
exceptional musical abilities, visual flair and passionate humanitarianism
make him an amazing and inspiring collaborator and I think readers will
experience every bit of that in the comics."

Added Yoshiki, "Working with the one-and-only Stan Lee has been an
incredible experience for me. He is truly a genius and one of the best
storytellers living today. I¹m excited with the results of our efforts and
look forward to the response from readers and music lovers around the
world."

³Being able to collaborate with creators on a global level is always a
thrill," said McFarlane. "Working with two big names, like Yoshiki and Stan Lee, I hope I'm able to add a little bit of my touch to a book that my, Stan's, but most importantly Yoshiki¹s fans will enjoy. At the same time, I hope this book helps introduce Yoshiki to fans that don¹t know him on American shores."


About Stan Lee

Stan Lee is the founder, chairman and chief creative officer of POW!
Entertainment (OTCQB:POWN). Widely acknowledged as the originator of the
modern day superhero, Lee created or co-created the vast majority of Marvel® Comics¹ most recognized and beloved characters including Spider-Man®, The Incredible Hulk®, X-Men®, The Fantastic Four®, Iron Man® and countless others. Lee first became publisher of Marvel Comics in 1972 and is presently the chairman emeritus of Marvel Enterprises. In 1977, he introduced ³Spider-Man² as a syndicated newspaper strip that went on to become the most successful of all syndicated adventure strips, appearing in more than 500 newspapers worldwide. More than 2 billion of his comic books have been published in 75 countries and in 25 languages and numerous blockbuster movies and dozens of successful television series have been based on characters he created. Lee formed POW! (Purveyors of Wonder) Entertainment with producer Gill Champion and attorney Arthur Lieberman. The company, unrelated to Marvel, creates franchises for theatrical release, television, DVD¹s, video games, merchandising and related ancillary markets.


About Yoshiki
The heart of X Japan is Yoshiki - songwriter, drummer, and classically
trained pianist who also plays guitar, bass and trumpet. Yoshiki, who has
been referred to by his first name only throughout his entire professional
career, is arguably Asia's most influential musical artist and biggest rock
icon. According to one industry insider, "Yoshiki is to Japan what Bono is
to the UK." His double-record classical album, Eternal Melody (1993), was
co-produced and arranged by the legendary George Martin, recorded with the
London Philharmonic Orchestra, and remains Japan's biggest-selling classical release. For KISS My Ass: Classic KISS Regrooved, the 1994 KISS tribute album, Yoshiki arranged and produced "Black Diamond" as a piano concerto, prompting Rolling Stone magazine to comment in its CD review, "the ingenuity award must go to Yoshiki..." Yoshiki has produced some of Japan's most influential bands, including Dir En Grey and Glay. At the request of the Japanese government in 1999, Yoshiki composed a piano concerto and performed it with a 77-piece orchestra to celebrate the tenth year of the Emperor of Japan's reign. In 2005, he was named the Music Director for the 2005 World Expo, composed its theme song, and conducted the orchestra at the opening ceremonies. Yoshiki also wrote the X Japan song "I.V." for the 2007 international blockbuster horror film "Saw IV," which played over the film's closing credits.

Beyond music, Yoshiki is an entrepreneur and a true renaissance man. He has overseen the development of a premiere line of Yoshiki jewelry, collaborated with the California Mondavi family to develop his own wine, "Y,² the Bank of Japan has issued a Yoshiki Visa Card and, for the first time in history, a Hello Kitty product line was named after a person - "Yoshikitty" - that became available in Japan in May 2010. In March 2011, Yoshiki co-produced an East-meets-west/fashion-meets-music event, ³Asia Girls Explosion,² showcasing top fashion brands, and debuting his own line of kimonos, ³Yoshikimono.² U.S. celebrities such as rocker Marilyn Manson and stars from the hit television series ³90210.² Yoshiki has graced the covers of more than 200 music, business and trade media outlets in Asia.

In July, 2010, Yoshiki launched the Yoshiki Foundation America, a California non-profit, 501(c) public benefit corporation that has already helped organizations including The Grammy Foundation, Make-a-Wish, and St. VincentMeals on Wheels. With the devastating March 2011 earthquake in Japan, YSA is focusing all of its efforts on Japan relief, and has partnered with the Japan America Society of Southern California in those efforts.


About Todd McFarlane
Grammy-and Emmy-winning producer/director Todd McFarlane became a true
comic book superstar in the 1980s as a result of his work on Marvel Comics¹
Spider-Man franchise. In 1992, he launched his own comic title, Spawn,
creating one of the most popular heroes of the 1990s. The title¹s hugely
popular 1992 debut sold an amazing 1.7 million copies ­ an unprecedented
feat in independent comics.

The comic became an Emmy Award-winning animated series on HBO and a
live-action feature film from New Line Cinema that grossed $100 million. A
whirlwind of growth and expansion followed: more comics, action figures, and award-winning entertainment projects.

After garnishing prominent success in the comic industry, McFarlane founded
the international award-winning McFarlane Toys. Now one of America¹s top
action figure manufacturers, McFarlane Toys produces figures of HALO: Reach
as well as the officially licensed teams of the NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL.
McFarlane Toys has become a leader and redefined the standards within the
action figure industry.

The breadth of McFarlane¹s awards span from two Emmy Awards, a pair of MTV
Video Music Awards, and a Grammy Award, to hundreds of international awards
for his work in the arts and action figure industry. Todd McFarlane
Entertainment continues to develop projects in the video game, film,
television and music industries.


About Jon Goff
Jon Goff has developed content for comic books, action figures, video games, entertainment properties while working with many of the top companies across entertainment industry, including The McFarlane Companies, 343 Industries, Microsoft Game Studios, Marvel Comics, MEGA Brands, Gentle Giant Studios, WETA Workshop, ABC Studios, Tor Books, DK Publishing, Prima Games and more. Jon¹s credits include Tor Books¹ Halo-themed anthology, Halo Evolutions, which features four poems (Beyond, Acheron-VII, ICON, Connectivity), as well as a short story (Headhunters), The Adventures of SPAWN online comic (McFarlane Toys/Todd McFarlane Productions), and the creator-owned comic titles, BIG HITTERS (with artist/co-creator Travis Sengaus) and Jack Rabbit (with artist/co-creator Jim Hanna). Jon is currently providing plots and additional scripting for Todd McFarlane¹s monthly Spawn comic book, while working on a pair of novels‹one horror, the other sci-fi/noir.

ABOUT POW! (PURVEYORS OF WONDER) ENTERTAINMENT, INC.
POW! Entertainment,Inc. (OTCQB: POWN), a multi-media and entertainment
company, was founded by noted comic book and entertainment figure Stan Lee,
together with award-winning producer Gill Champion and intellectual property specialist Arthur Lieberman. POW!¹s principals have extensive backgrounds in the entertainment industry encompassing the creation, production and licensing of original intellectual properties, including some of the most successful entertainment franchises of all time. POW! is capitalizing on this combined expertise, specializing in creating and developing both the legacy and digital media components of the entertainment industry. This includes animation and live-action feature films, plus television, DVDs, multi-media, merchandising and related ancillary markets, all of which contribute to global expansion. POW! partners with other individuals and entities of entertainment¹s top echelon, including studios and networks in the creation, licensing and distribution of new POW! character franchises.
www.powentertainment.com.

About Todd McFarlane Productions
Todd McFarlane Productions (TMP) is the company behind the monthly comic
book Spawn. Created by Todd McFarlane, Spawn debuted in May 1992, selling
1.7 million copies, making it the best-selling independent comic book of its time. Spawn is published in nine languages and distributed in more than 32 countries. Now in its 20th year, the comic recently published its 208th issue.

Dynamite Entertainment Launches Living Corpse: Exhumed #1


The dead have a way of reviving themselves and becoming a thorn in the side of the living. In the case of the apocalypse that's clearly no good, but in the case of comics it makes for great reading. Dynamite Entertainment is counting on zombie appeal as they're launching Living Corpse: Exhumed #1 and celebrating by releasing the first issue for free.

The title ships in August 2011 and follows the Living Corpse and his efforts in holding off the hordes of darkness. That is until a Nosferatu moves into his graveyard and brings with him the breaking loose of hell. It's so bad that his friend Lilith is even dragged into the middle.

"I couldn't be happier to have found a home with Dynamite," says Living Corpse co-creator Ken Haeser. "They have a great, growing line of horror-themed comics like Army of Darkness, Vampirella and the Chaos! comic characters. I know we are in great hands with them."

"Being involved with Dynamite is a dream come true," says Living Corpse co-creator Buz Hasson. "They're an A list comic company and I'm honored to have the Living Corpse become a house name for them."

Dynamite is also looking to parlay the comic's success into a CGI animated movie that is currently wrapping up production. It's slated to be released in 2011 from Shoreline Entertainment. The first issue is written by Ken Haeser and illustrated by Haeser and Buz Hanson (covers by Haeser/Hasson, Jeff Zornow and a movie exclusive cover. There's also a TPB collection The Living Corpse #0, ½, 1-6 and Annual #1.

Full press release after the jump.

DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT EXHUMES THE LIVING CORPSE!
NEW SERIES LAUNCHES IN AUGUST!
READ THE ENTIRE FIRST ISSUE OF THE ORIGINAL THE LIVING CORPSE SERIES ABSOLUTELY FREE!

June 21, 2011, Runnemede, NJ - In honor of the launch and upcoming release of the next - and newest - The Living Corpse series - Dynamite Entertainment is providing THE ENTIRE FIRST ISSUE OF THE ORIGINAL THE LIVING CORPSE SERIES ABSOLUTELY FOR FREE!!! In Living Corpse: Exhumed #1 (of 6) shipping in August 2011, it's hard enough to be The Living Corpse - the flies, the hunger for human brains and the unending task of holding off the hordes of darkness from creeping into the world of the living. But when a Nosferatu suddenly moves into his graveyard, all hell breaks loose! And what will happen when The Living Corpse's friend, Lilith, get's caught in the middle? It's a battle of the undead and only one will be left standing! (here's a hint... the name of the book ain't Nosferatu!)

As well as serving as publisher of The Living Corpse comic, Dynamite is also branching out as producers on the brand new Living Corpse CGI animated movie, currently wrapping up production and looking at a 2011 release date from Shoreline Entertainment. Look for The Living Corpse: Exhumed #1 as well as the first trade paperback collecting the first 9 SOLD-OUT issues of the series to arrive in stores this coming August!

"I couldn't be happier to have found a home with Dynamite," says Living Corpse co-creator Ken Haeser. "They have a great, growing line of horror-themed comics like Army of Darkness, Vampirella and the Chaos! comic characters. I know we are in great hands with them."

"Being involved with Dynamite is a dream come true," says Living Corpse co-creator Buz Hasson. "They're an A list comic company and I'm honored to have the Living Corpse become a house name for them."

The Living Corpse follows the adventures of a self aware "zombie" who acts as a "gatekeeper" between the land of the living and the horrors that lie in the shadows. But this isn't your daddy's zombie comic.

"It's a zombie comic in that the main character is a zombie who does eat human brains," says Haeser. "But our zombie is a good guy… well, as good as a zombie who eats brains can get!"

"The Living Corpse is a movie that we are very proud of, so we are extremely excited that Dynamite Entertainment will be publishing the new books," said Morris Ruskin, CEO of Shoreline Entertainment and executive producer on the Living Corpse animated film. "Ken Haeser and Buz Hasson are incredible artists and fantastic storytellers whose talents will really shine with Dynamite's terrific team behind them."

"Ken and Buz are both great talents who have a dedicated audience, and we hope to create additional awareness and build on their audience. Their comic is really cool, and we're enjoying working with him on The Living Corpse," says Dynamite President and Publisher Nick Barrucci. "I am so glad that we are able to bring fans the next chapter!"

THE LIVING CORPSE: EXHUMED #1 (of 6)
Written by KEN HAESER
Art by KEN HAESER AND BUZ HASSON
Covers by HAESER/HASSON (50%), JEFF ZORNOW (Halloween and Godzilla comics) (25%) & a Movie exclusive cover (25%)
Also available is a limited edition sketch cover.

THE LIVING CORPSE: POST MORTEM vol. 1 Trade paperback
By KEN HAESER AND BUZ HASSON
230 pages collecting The Living Corpse #0, ½, 1-6 and Annual #1

REVIEWS: "If you're a fan of brain-sucking/flesh-eating zombie movies and think you've seen every rotted incarnation of these soulless creatures imaginable, you haven't met The Living Corpse yet."
-Fangoria magazine
"A fun and gory romp in the tradition of Sam Raimi's Evil Dead films."
-Rue Morgue magazine

"A surprisingly good, refreshing take on the zombie genre."
-Philadelphia Daily news

"Gory and funny and oddly touching."
-Paperback Reader

"This comic has balls, there is no other word that can really describe it."
-Reviewbusters.net

"The Living Corpse features bold, eye-catching illustrations that make its characters pop off the pages"
-Fandomania.com
http://fandomania.com/comic-review-the-living-corpse-annual-1-the-living-corpse-vs-hackslash/

"A slick, fun horror-comedy comic book"
-Weekly Comic Book Review
http://weeklycomicbookreview.com/2009/04/17/the-living-corpse-annual-1-guest-starring-hackslash-review/

"These guys know what is going on! I can not get over how great the visuals are."-Comic Related
http://comicrelated.com/news/2300/the-living-corpse-5-and-6

"Really, this is one of the great indies."
-Paperback Reader
http://www.paperbackreader.com/newcolumn2.php?ColumnID=617

"If you're looking for a zombie book that's different from the rest of those undead tales, then check out THE LIVING CORPSE."
-Buried.com
http://www.buried.com/fictionreviews/horror.php?id=337

"If you like to laugh and if you enjoy zombies, this book is worth every penny."
-Captain Blue Hen Comics
http://www.captainbluehen.com/index.php?s=alive

"This comic is one of the freshest ideas I have run across"
LOP Magazine
http://www.horrornewsnetwork.net/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=7569&f=3

"A zombie book with brains!"
Comic Monsters.com
http://www.comicmonsters.com/section-article-192The_Living_Corpse__1_Review.html

To find a comic shop near you, call 1-888-comicbook or visit www.comicshoplocator.com

For art and more information, please visit:

www.dynamite.net

ABOUT DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT:

DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT was founded in 2004 and is home to several best-selling comic book titles and properties, including The Boys, Green Hornet, Vampirella, Warlord of Mars, Project Superpowers, Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time and more!

In addition to their critically-acclaimed titles and best selling comics, Dynamite works with some of the most high profile creators in comics and entertainment, including Alex Ross, John Cassaday, Garth Ennis, Michael Avon Oeming, Mel Rubi, Marc Guggenheim, Stephen Sadowski, Mike Carey, Jim Krueger, Greg Pak, Brett Matthews, Matt Wagner and a host of up and coming new talent!

DYNAMITE is consistently ranked in the upper tiers of comic book publishers and several of their titles - including PROJECT SUPERPOWERS - which debuted at #4 in the Top Ten lists produced by Diamond Comics Distributors. In 2005 Diamond awarded the company a GEM award for Best New Publisher and another GEM in 2006 for Comics Publisher of the Year (under 5%). The company has also been nominated for several industry awards, including the prestigious Eisner Award.

Dynamite also controls and owns multiple library's, including but not limited to the Vampirella library of casts and characters, The Superpowers library of characters, The Kirby: Genesis world of characters, and the Chaos! Comics universe of characters.

Monday, June 27, 2011

IDW Announces Ongoing Ghostbusters Series


If bustin' makes you feel good, then reading about it must make you feel great. IDW Publishing and Sony Pictures Consumer Products have just announced the launch of an ongoing Ghostbusters comic book series written by Erik Burham and illustrated by Dan Schoening and Nick Runge.

“My dream since I took over the editorial duties on IDW’s Ghostbusters comics license was to bring the boys in proton packs to monthly comics,” said series editor Tom Waltz. “We’ve had fantastic Ghostbusters one-shots and mini-series up to this point, but the incredible success of Ghostbusters: Infestation has proven that Ghostbusters fans, old and new alike, are still very hungry for ghostbusting tales. With the awesome creative team we’ve gathered to make it happen, the best is yet to come!”

In the new ongoing series, Ray is troubled by what could be a prophetic dream masquerading as an ill omen of an apocalypse. Each issue will also contain two pages of exclusive, behind-the-scenes extras by creator Tristan Jones. There will also be special retailer incentive covers, including a “Who Ya Gonna call” cover by Schoening, and a glow-in-the-dark cover.

Furthermore, as part of IDW’s “Be a Ghostbuster” promotion, retailers will have the opportunity to obtain a unique variant featuring up to four personalized Ghostbusters on their cover. Fans are encouraged to reach out to their retailers to learn more about these exclusive variant covers.

Ghostbusters #1 will be available in stores September 2011 for $3.99. Full press release after the jump.

IDW ANNOUNCES "GHOSTBUSTERS" ONGOING SERIES

San Diego, CA (June 24, 2011) — IDW Publishing and Sony Pictures Consumer Products are thrilled to announce the launch of an all-new, ongoing GHOSTBUSTERS comic book series. Spinning out of IDW’s hit Infestation event, and featuring Ghostbusters: Infestation scribe Erik Burham, the ghost hunters from New York City are back with exciting new adventures starting in September. Helping Burnham bring this zany story of the dead to life will be fan-favorite artist Dan Schoening (Ghostbusters: What in Samhain Just Happened?!) and popular IDW Ghostbusters cover artist Nick Runge.

“My dream since I took over the editorial duties on IDW’s Ghostbusters comics license was to bring the boys in proton packs to monthly comics,” said series editor Tom Waltz. “We’ve had fantastic Ghostbusters one-shots and mini-series up to this point, but the incredible success of Ghostbusters: Infestation has proven that Ghostbusters fans, old and new alike, are still very hungry for ghostbusting tales. With the awesome creative team we’ve gathered to make it happen, the best is yet to come!”

In this ongoing series, psychokinetic energy is on the rise again, and business is booming for the boys. Ray is troubled by what could be a prophetic dream—is this an ill omen of an upcoming apocaplypse, or just a little indigestion? These questions and more are raised in the first issue of the all-new GHOSTBUSTERS comic series. In addition, each issue will contain two pages of exclusive behind-the-scenes extras by creator Tristan Jones (Tales of the TMNT.)

IDW will offer special retailer incentive covers, including a “Who Ya Gonna call” cover by Schoening, and a glow-in-the-dark cover. Furthermore, as part of IDW’s “Be a Ghostbuster” promotion, retailers will have the opportunity to obtain a unique variant featuring up to four personalized Ghostbusters on their cover. Fans are encouraged to reach out to their retailers to learn more about these exclusive variant covers.

GHOSTBUSTERS #1 ($3.99, 32 pages, full color) will be available in stores in September 2011. Diamond order code: JUL11 0130

About IDW Publishing
IDW is an award-winning publisher of comic books, graphic novels and trade paperbacks, based in San Diego, California. Renowned for its diverse catalog of licensed and independent titles, IDW publishes some of the most successful and popular titles in the industry, including: Hasbro’s The Transformers and G.I. JOE, Paramount’s Star Trek; HBO’s True Blood; the BBC’s DOCTOR WHO; Toho’s Godzilla; Sony’s Ghostbusters; and comics and trade collections based on novels by worldwide bestselling author, James Patterson. IDW is also home to the Library of American Comics imprint, which publishes classic comic reprints; Yoe! Books, a partnership with Yoe! Studio; and is the print publisher for EA Comics.

IDW’s original horror series, 30 Days of Night, was launched as a major motion picture in October 2007 by Sony Pictures and was the #1 film in its first week of release. More information about the company can be found at www.IDWPublishing.com.

About Sony Pictures Entertainment
Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America (SCA), a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; digital content creation and distribution; worldwide channel investments; home entertainment acquisition and distribution, operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of filmed entertainment in more than 130 countries. Sony Pictures Entertainment can be found on the World Wide Web at www.sonypictures.com.

CBLDF Forms Coalition to Defend American Comics Reader Facing Criminal Charges In Canada


You know that recently passed law? The one where border agents can search your computer in looking for criminally influenced photos and documents? Well it seems that border patrol agents don't have enough training as they're charging an American citizen for just that.

A comic book enthusiast in his mid-twenties was flying from the US to Canada to visit a friend. Upon arriving at Canadian Customs his laptop, iPad and iPhone were searched, where agents discovered manga, which they promptly classified as child pornography. The images in question are just comics in manga style. Cue the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, who today announced that it's forming a coalition to support his legal defense.

CBLDF Executive Director Charles Brownstein says, “Although the CBLDF can’t protect comic fans everywhere in every situation, we want to join this effort to protect an American comic fan being prosecuted literally as he stood on the border of our country for behavior the First Amendment protects here, and its analogues in Canadian law should protect there.”

The CBLDF has agreed to assist in the case by contributing funds towards the defense, which has been estimated to cost $150,000 CDN. The CBLDF will also provide access to experts and assistance on legal strategy. The CBLDF’s efforts are joined by the recently re-formed Comic Legends Legal Defense Fund, a Canadian organization that will contribute to the fundraising effort. Please contribute to this endeavor by making a tax deductible contribution here.

Full press release after the jump.

CBLDF Forms Coalition to Defend American Comics Reader Facing Criminal Charges In Canada

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund today announces that it is forming a coalition to support the legal defense of an American citizen who is facing criminal charges in Canada that could result in a mandatory minimum sentence of one year in prison for comics brought into the country on his laptop. This incident is the most serious in a trend the CBLDF has been tracking involving the search and seizure of the print and electronic comic books carried by travelers crossing borders.

CBLDF Executive Director Charles Brownstein says, “Although the CBLDF can’t protect comic fans everywhere in every situation, we want to join this effort to protect an American comic fan being prosecuted literally as he stood on the border of our country for behavior the First Amendment protects here, and its analogues in Canadian law should protect there.”

The CBLDF has agreed to assist in the case by contributing funds towards the defense, which has been estimated to cost $150,000 CDN. The CBLDF will also provide access to experts and assistance on legal strategy. The CBLDF’s efforts are joined by the recently re-formed Comic Legends Legal Defense Fund, a Canadian organization that will contribute to the fundraising effort. Please contribute to this endeavor by making a tax deductible contribution here.

The facts of the case involve an American citizen, computer programmer, and comic book enthusiast in his mid-twenties who was flying from his home in the United States to Canada to visit a friend. Upon arrival at Canadian Customs a customs officer conducted a search of the American and his personal belongings, including his laptop, iPad, and iPhone. The customs officer discovered manga on the laptop and considered it to be child pornography. The client’s name is being withheld on the request of counsel for reasons relating to legal strategy.

The images at issue are all comics in the manga style. No photographic evidence of criminal behavior is at issue. Nevertheless, a warrant was issued and the laptop was turned over to police. Consequently, the American has been charged with both the possession of child pornography as well as its importation into Canada. As a result, if convicted at trial, the American faces a minimum of one year in prison. This case could have far reaching implications for comic books and manga in North America.

The CBLDF’s Board of Directors voted unanimously to aid the case by raising funds to contribute to the defense and to help the defense with strategy and expert resources.

Brownstein says, “This is an important case that impacts the rights of everyone who reads, publishes, and makes comics and manga in North America. It underscores the dangers facing everyone traveling with comics, and it can establish important precedents regarding travelers rights. It also relates to the increasingly urgent issue of authorities prosecuting art as child pornography. While this case won’t set a US precedent, it can inform whatever precedent is eventually set. This case is also important with respect to artistic merit in the Canadian courts, and a good decision could bring Canadian law closer to US law in that respect. With the help of our supporters, we hope to raise the funds to wage a fight that yields good decisions and to create tools to help prevent these sorts of cases from continuing to spread.”
Find out more on the case here. To help support the case, you can make a monetary contribution here.

About CBLDF
The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund was founded in 1986 as a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of First Amendment rights for members of the comics community. They have defended dozens of Free Expression cases in courts across the United States, and led important education initiatives promoting comics literacy and free expression. For additional information, donations, and other inquiries call 800-99-CBLDF or visit them online at www.cbldf.org.

About CLLDF
The Comic Legends Legal Defense Fund was founded in 1987 to raise money for the defense of a Calgary, Alberta comic shop whose owners were charged with selling obscene materials. The CLLDF has since been maintained on an ad hoc basis to provide financial relief for Canadian comics retailers, publishers, professionals, or readers whose right to free speech has been infringed by civil authorities. Largely dormant since the early 1990s, the CLLDF is reforming to provide support for this case, and reorganizing to ensure that help will be readily available for future cases involving Canadian citizens or authorities. To help the CLLDF in this mission, please go to www.clldf.ca.

Doc Savage Returns in New Audiobook


There are lots of docs in comics. Doc Ock, Dr. Strange, Dr. Doom...you get the picture. Doc Savage is another doctor that hails from the pulp era of comics that many of today's readers might not be familiar with. A new audiobook should do the trick in familiarizing those not in the know with the savage doc.

Python Isle is the first audiobook from Radio Archives. In it, a long=lost pioneer flyer returns to civilization accompanied by an exotic woman who speaks in a lost tongue. From his towering skyscraper headquarters in New York, through a dangerous Zeppelin journey to Cape Town, climaxing on a serpent-haunted island in the forbidden reaches of the Indian Ocean, Doc Savage and his iron comrades race to untangle a weird puzzle so deep that the only clues can be found in the Bible.

It's written by Will Murray and produced and directed by Roger Rittner. Yeah, those are the guys behing "The Adventures of Doc Savage" radio series. It will feature narration by Michael McConnohie, cover art by Joe DeVito and two exclusive audio interviews with Murray on the history of Doc Savage and the discovery of Doc Savage creator Lester Dent's long lost manuscripts.

The 8-cd set will set you back $25.98 while the digital download will be $17.98. Full press release after the jump.

Pulp Hero Doc Savage Returns in Exciting Audiobook Adventure

The greatest pulp fiction hero of the 1930s is back in the first of a new series of thrilling audiobooks!

For over 80 years, the name Doc Savage has meant thrills and excitement to millions of readers worldwide. Now, for the very first time, the legendary Man of Bronze comes to vivid life in "Python Isle", the first audiobook adventure from RadioArchives.com.

In "Python Isle", a long-lost pioneer flyer returns to civilization accompanied by an exotic woman who speaks in a lost tongue. From his towering skyscraper headquarters in New York, through a dangerous Zeppelin journey to Cape Town, climaxing on a serpent-haunted island in the forbidden reaches of the Indian Ocean, Doc Savage and his iron comrades race to untangle a weird puzzle so deep that the only clues can be found in the Bible!

Written by Will Murray and produced and directed by Roger Rittner - the same team that created "The Adventures of Doc Savage" radio series - "Python Isle" features dramatic narration by Michael McConnohie, cover art by Joe DeVito, and two exclusive audio interviews with Will Murray on the history of Doc Savage and the discovery of Doc Savage creator Lester Dent's long lost manuscripts.

“Python Isle”, available as an 8-CD set priced at $25.98 or as an 8-hour digital download priced at $17.98, is the first in a new pulp fiction audiobook series from RadioArchives.com. Upcoming releases will feature the classic adventures of The Spider, Secret Agent “X”, and all seven of Will Murray’s exciting Doc Savage adventures.

RadioArchives.com is one of the largest creators and distributors of old time radio and pulp fiction entertainment in the United States. Specializing in fully restored radio programs, remastered from original recordings, they are known for their outstanding audio fidelity, impressive packaging, and commitment to top quality customer service.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Defense with the BoomStick



(Disclaimer: This post is set in a world where zombies have taken over and people live in small spots all over the world. It was a weekly broadcast of news from around the globe and a tip to help survival, but now I have been bitten and partially cured now searching for a full vaccine.)

Another week gone by with more ground covered. Actually made it pretty far into the southern part of Indiana and managed to lose those bandits and small zombie groups that were tailing me. Especially the bandits- they just would not give up after that run-in I had with them where I had to kill a few to escape.

I guess they took that kinda personally and have been on my trail ever since, but with all the noise they were making so were plenty of zombies harassing them as well to the point that was just too much for them. Through the chasing and searching for places to hide I did come across something quite amazing.

I managed to stumble across this small survivor town that is using a storage facility as their base. It’s pretty ingenious of them to use that as a secure place with the securities that were already in place before zombies attack with the walls, as the security cameras and gates makes it a pretty secure place. A few of the units had some generators in them when they broke all of them open and have a good supply of power to keep everything running.

On top of that I am pretty damn glad they didn’t shoot first at me, but let me in and relax a bit as we swapped intel. Seems like these folks really lucked out as they were telling me with the data from the storage facilities office they learned about other facilities like theirs in other locations that are even more secure.

They were telling me groups went off to locate and secure these other locations as backup bases and generally just more locations for survivors to go if need be. They even managed to have CB radios to keep in contact with each other and to be able to aid when others are in trouble.

Over this last year and a half I wasn’t really even sure if groups likes these outside of big ones ran by government entities were even making it out here since all I see are bandit groups. It’s a welcome sight to see people actually working together to further the goal of human survival and not break down to destroy what’s left. It's nice living like this doesn’t last as I am moving out on Sunday to continue my journey and research.

Until next week keep surviving.

New Captain America: First Avenger Trailer


Yahoo! Movies just unleashed a brand new trailer for Captain America: First Avenger. A lot of the footage is recycled, but there's a lot more attention given to Captain America and Red Skull.

Check it out after the jump.

Preview - Rage #1


Remember Doom and Quake? The two games from the nineties that were big on multiplayer and violence. The developers of those games, id, is working on a new game in the same vain as those two called Rage. The main difference between this game and the prior two games is that comic book tie-ins with video games are all the "rage" now.

Presented by Dark Horse, Rage is written by Arvid Nelson and illustrated by Andres Mutti and Pierluigi Baldassini (colors by Michael Atiyeh and cover by Glenn Fabry and Stephan Martiniere). The Earth has been devastated by collision with an asteroid, with a tiny fraction of the population surviving in life-sustaining arks, only to awaken in a wasteland controlled by a global military dictatorship called the Authority. But a rescued scientist learns that the Authority has lied to her and the other survivors about how this new world came to be.

The book should be in stores now and interiors are after the jump.




IDW Announces Code Word: Geronimo Graphic Novel


I'd be lying if I said I was surprised. I mean, it was only a matter of time before someone capitalized on the SEAL Team Six mission now famed throughout the world. I guess I just didn't think it would be this soon. Regardless of your opinions of the assault, IDW Publishing has teamed up with Charlie Foxtrot Entertainment to publish Code Word: Geronimo, a new graphic novel illustrating the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound. Written by Captain Dale Dye (USMC, Ret.) and Dr. Julia Dye, the book offers a moment-by-moment inside story of the clandestine raid.

“Due to entirely appropriate security concerns, there is some creative license in our script,” said Captain Dye. “But I think readers will be gratified with the detail and thrilled with our take on one of the most daring and successful commando raids in American military history.”

Artists Gerry Kissell and Amin Amat join the team for illustrations while John M. Del Vecchio, a decorated Vietnam veteran, will provide afterword material. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to a charity supporting military service members.

“I have worked for many years now with Charlie Foxtrot Entertainment on a number of successful projects,” said Tom Waltz, IDW editor, former Marine and Desert Storm I veteran. “But none of those compare to the excitement and pride I have for CODE WORD: GERONIMO. The Dyes have put together a fantastic script detailing the heroically dangerous raid by SEAL Team 6 against Public Enemy Number One, Osama Bin Laden, and I firmly believe you won’t get a more accurate account of this pivotal moment in history unless it is told by the SEAL team members themselves.”

The 88 page hardcover will set you back $15.99 when it hits stores September 6. Full press release after the jump.

IDW and Charlie Foxtrot Entertainment Announce Code Word: Geronimo Graphic Novel

In-depth retelling of the SEAL Team 6 raid on Osama Bin Laden’s compound Available in September
Based on true events of the mission and written by Captain Dale Dye (USMC, Ret)


San Diego, CA (June 23, 2011) – IDW Publishing and Charlie Foxtrot Entertainment today have the honor of announcing CODE WORD: GERONIMO, an original graphic novel illustrating the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound by SEAL Team 6 on May 1, 2011. Expertly written by Captain Dale Dye (USMC, Ret.) and Dr. Julia Dye, Ph.D., CODE WORD: GERONIMO offers the amazing, moment-by-moment inside story of the clandestine raid that rid the world of this terrorist mastermind.

“Due to entirely appropriate security concerns, there is some creative license in our script,” said Captain Dye. “But I think readers will be gratified with the detail and thrilled with our take on one of the most daring and successful commando raids in American military history.”

This historical keepsake details the bravery and valor of SEAL Team 6 as it descends into Abbottabad, Pakistan and achieves the near impossible. Joining the Dyes to bring this incredible graphic novel to life are artists Gerry Kissell (The A-Team: War Stories, Iron Sky) and Amin Amat (Buckaroo Banzai, Iron Sky). John M. Del Vecchio, decorated Vietnam veteran and best-selling author of the The 13th Valley, will also provide afterword material. A portion of the proceeds from CODE WORD: GERONIMO will be donated to a charity supporting military service members.
“I have worked for many years now with Charlie Foxtrot Entertainment on a number of successful projects,” said Tom Waltz, IDW editor, former Marine and Desert Storm I veteran. “But none of those compare to the excitement and pride I have for CODE WORD: GERONIMO. The Dyes have put together a fantastic script detailing the heroically dangerous raid by SEAL Team 6 against Public Enemy Number One, Osama Bin Laden, and I firmly believe you won’t get a more accurate account of this pivotal moment in history unless it is told by the SEAL team members themselves.”

Following an exceptional career in the United States Marine Corps, Captain Dye is now best known as the military advisor to Hollywood for his work on over seventy films, from Platoon to Saving Private Ryan, and Band Of Brothers to The Pacific. Captain Dye is also the acclaimed author of many novels, including Outrage and Laos File.


CODE WORD: GERONIMO ($15.99, hardcover, full color, 88 pages) will be available in stores throughout North America on September 6, 2011. ISBN: 978-1-61377-097-9


About IDW Publishing
IDW is an award-winning publisher of comic books, graphic novels and trade paperbacks, based in San Diego, California. Renowned for its diverse catalog of licensed and independent titles, IDW publishes some of the most successful and popular titles in the industry, including: Hasbro’s The Transformers and G.I. JOE, Paramount’s Star Trek; HBO’s True Blood; the BBC’s DOCTOR WHO; Toho’s Godzilla; and comics and trade collections based on novels by worldwide bestselling author, James Patterson. IDW is also home to the Library of American Comics imprint, which publishes classic comic reprints; Yoe! Books, a partnership with Yoe! Studio; and is the print publisher for EA Comics.

IDW’s original horror series, 30 Days of Night, was launched as a major motion picture in October 2007 by Sony Pictures and was the #1 film in its first week of release. More information about the company can be found at IDWPublishing.com.

About Charlie Foxtrot Entertainment
Charlie Foxtrot Entertainment, LLC (CFE) is a military-based entertainment company that is “inspired by heroes.” It is engaged in the business of financing, producing and licensing, movies, documentaries, books, graphic novels, video games, music and merchandise--from its library of currently owned, and to-be-acquired, military oriented intellectual properties. CFE’s best-selling books and critically-acclaimed graphic novels provide a base for the development of its film and TV productions. The company takes great pride in the fact that all of its members are veterans of the U.S military—this provides CFE with a unique and authentic insight few others can achieve. More information about the company and its principals can be found at www.charliefoxtrotfilms.com.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Review – Snarked #0


Ah Lewis Carroll, creator of so many characters that have been told to children and adults for generations at this point. From Alice and all her adventures in Wonderland to the Jabberwocky and Snark Hunting, Carroll has taken us on many adventures using the genre of “literary nonsense” – or so Wikipedia tells me.

Amongst the characters we’ve met on our journeys with Carroll are The Walrus and the Carpenter. In Snarked #0 the two are better known as Wilburforce J. Walrus and Clyde McDunk. Snarked follows their swindling and conniving ways as they try to con people out of their belongings and more importantly – their food!

Roger Landridge both writes and illustrates this fun tale with Rachelle Rosenberg on colors and Kaboom! Studios publishing. Let’s set the scene shall we? The Kingdom is without a King as he has been lost at sea for several months. This leaves only Princess Scarlett and Prince “Rusty” Russell in the palace as the Queen is not mentioned.

After stealing a newspaper and discussing potential scams to turn a profit, the news of the King’s absence seems an opportunity to make the score of a lifetime. Or is it?

I think what I enjoyed most was the bringing to life of the truly devious Walrus in this comic. If you’ve read the poem before you know that he tricks a large family of oysters out of the water and then mercilessly eats them. Carroll’s characters are playful because of the literary technique he used to write, but underneath – as with many children’s stories – lies the stuff of horror.

Now, Landridge never takes it that far and in this fun, mischievous book the antics of the two bungling scam artists are nothing that any kid wouldn’t get a giggle out of. The art style is totally appropriate for this playful setting and has a nice cross of Disney and Sunday morning comics feel to it. The writing is solid as well and gives us some background into what Wonderland may have been like back before things fell apart and Alice got there.

Some nice added touches after the story concludes are newspaper clippings where we get a glimpse of some other famous characters like the Cheshire Cat and the Mat Hatter and his tea parties. We also get an amusing look into the diaries of a young Princess Scarlett.

If you are a fan of Carroll’s work and just get a kick out of getting a glimpse behind the curtain into what may have been some of the lore that turned the kingdom into what the world becomes, have a look at this comic and take a fun whirl down the rabbit hole.