Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Review - The Rinse #1

A lot of people think money is dirty, whether it be covered in fine layer of cocaine, in blood or even burnt. Money goes through all sorts of hell to get into your pocket to be spent. Money is also considered dirty when earned by less than legal means and with money like that it has to be cleaned. That is where a launder comes into play- someone who will be your best friend when you have a ton of dirty money that needs cleaning.

This underworld business must have some crazy stories of its own that would show you things a normal person might never know. BOOM! Studios decided to shed some light on this sort of life with the new comic series called The Rinse, with the first issue out today.

Taking money earned from illegal activity and making it clean takes a level of skill and intelligence that most people shouldn’t mess with it as the risks are high. For Jeff Sinclair these risks are just a part of his day as anyone who needs money cleaned in California knows he's the man to talk to. In The Rinse #1, Sinclair gets that one job where the risk is ever so much higher and the amount involved is in the millions. On top of that it's money stolen from a powerful man in Vegas. Sinclair isn’t the kind of of guy to back down thought, not when he's set to make a handsome fee on rinsing twenty-five million of this guy’s dirty money that a lot of people are wanting back.

This issue is full of intrigue and twists that are sure to keep you guessing who is helping whom and will make you wonder if Sinclair is going to be able to make it through this one. There are a lot of players getting involved with this one job and the twenty-five million at the heart of it all.

Artist Marc Laming's artwork was pretty damn cool nice use of shading and a dark look, yet was still bright in a way that made the story come alive. The characters and the background blend together that make all the panels fit precisely with the story and from what I read in this issue I can't wait for the next one. Writer/creator Gary Phillips and Laming have some damn fine work on their hands. Hopefully this series will run for good long bit.

If you're a fan of this style of story then The Rinse is definitely worth the read and a series to jump into with both feet. For a buck that's a deal you can’t beat. The book is in stores today with interiors below.







Dynamite Comics Brings Back Silver Star


Dynamite is on a roll, churning out awesome title after awesome title. The latest pays tribute to one of Jack Kirby's greatest creations in Silver Star.

In November fans will get a firsthand look at America's greatest unknown superhero in the debut issue written by Jai Nitz and illustrated by Johnny D. Since it's Dynamite, there's of course the Alex Ross cover, in addition to covers by Jae Lee and Mark Buckingham.

"I recently saw Grant Morrison at Comic Con in San Diego," stated Silver Star writer Jai Nitz. "He hugged me and asked how the Kirby stuff was going. He did that because he gets it. Of course he does. He just wrote Supergods, a book about the connection between the superheroic stories we tell and ourselves. He knows that no one has ever told superheroic stories better than Jack Kirby. When I say "ever" I don't mean just in comics. I mean ever. Jack Kirby is in the pantheon alongside Homer and Shakespeare. I get to write Silver Star, the last great Kirby creation. Like our publisher Nick Barrucci said, "It isn't Kirby and Simon, or Kirby and Lee, or Kirby and whoever-- it's just Kirby." It's about human potential and the future of superpowers. It's the kind of thing Morrison talks about in his book. It's crazy ideas, unbridled with the needle buried in the red. I want to write comics like that, but I get to jam with Kirby, the greatest master of our medium, from the inception stage. It's great big gobs of fun. Alex Ross and Kurt Busiek are doing the real highwire act by putting all these distinct Kirby creations in the same universe and kicking the dial up to eleven. I'm surrounded by genius. There is a genius scaffold, genius collaborators, genius creators, and genius hugging fans. I'm so happy to be along for the ride I could burst."

Silver Star's real name is Morgan Miller, the first of a new breed called Homo-Geneticus. The most powerful man in the world has been living in secret for the last thirty years, but he's been busy. Silver Star secretly protects the world from the amazing super-powerful dangers that threaten billions every day.

"Silver Star stands next to Captain Victory as one of Kirby's greatest independent creations -- those he gave the greatest thought and attention to," says legendary artist Alex Ross. "It's a key accomplishment of the Kirby: Genesis series to return these characters to visible prominence in the field. Silver Star is Jack Kirby's Superman and Dr. Manhattan all rolled into one."

Acclaimed cover artist Jae Lee had this to say, "It's an honor to be following in the footsteps of the greatest creator this medium has ever known."

"Studying the pencil art of Jack Kirby, trying to capture some of his dynamism and energy, reinvigorate my own drawing and helped me evolve into a much better artist," says the fan-favorite cover artist Mark Buckingham. "Jack Kirby is comics. Not just an artist or writer, but a primal creative force that still exists in the heart of so many modern comics and their creators. It is an absolute delight to be able to contribute cover art to Silver Star and to help honor his legacy."

"When I was told I would be working on characters created by the great Jack Kirby himself, I erupted in crackling Kirby energy dots myself," exclaimed Kirby: Genesis - Silver Star artist Johnny D! "I'm under way with it now, the script rocks and having my pages go through another icon Alex Ross, I'm really going to grow as an artist and deliver my best work by far!"

"As you can see, everyone involved with Kirby: Genesis - Silver Star has such incredible enthusiasm for the project," states Dynamite President and Publisher Nick Barrucci. "We have put together a comic book that shows everyone's undeniable love of the genius that is Jack Kirby, and the passion will show on every page fans read!"

Full press release after the jump.

Spinning out of Kirby: Genesis comes one of Jack Kirby's greatest creations - Silver Star! Get a firsthand look at America's greatest unknown superhero in this sterling debut issue from writer Jai Nitz and artist Johnny D. The story, which has been worked on with the support of Kirby: Genesis creators Alex Ross and Kurt Busiek, can be found in stores this November with covers by Alex Ross, Jae Lee, and for the first time ever at Dynamite, Mark (Fables) Buckingham!!!

Before Kirby: Genesis there was... Silver Star! The last great Kirby creation, Morgan Miller is the first of a new breed-- Homo-Geneticus. The most powerful man in the world has been living in secret for the last thirty years, but he's been busy. Silver Star secretly protects the world from the amazing super-powerful dangers that threaten billions every day. Witness superheroic war, giant monsters and astral adventures!

"Silver Star stands next to Captain Victory as one of Kirby's greatest independent creations -- those he gave the greatest thought and attention to," says legendary artist Alex Ross. "It's a key accomplishment of the Kirby: Genesis series to return these characters to visible prominence in the field. Silver Star is Jack Kirby's Superman and Dr. Manhattan all rolled into one."

"I recently saw Grant Morrison at Comic Con in San Diego," stated Silver Star writer Jai Nitz. "He hugged me and asked how the Kirby stuff was going. He did that because he gets it. Of course he does. He just wrote Supergods, a book about the connection between the superheroic stories we tell and ourselves. He knows that no one has ever told superheroic stories better than Jack Kirby. When I say "ever" I don't mean just in comics. I mean ever. Jack Kirby is in the pantheon alongside Homer and Shakespeare. I get to write Silver Star, the last great Kirby creation. Like our publisher Nick Barrucci said, "It isn't Kirby and Simon, or Kirby and Lee, or Kirby and whoever-- it's just Kirby." It's about human potential and the future of superpowers. It's the kind of thing Morrison talks about in his book. It's crazy ideas, unbridled with the needle buried in the red. I want to write comics like that, but I get to jam with Kirby, the greatest master of our medium, from the inception stage. It's great big gobs of fun. Alex Ross and Kurt Busiek are doing the real highwire act by putting all these distinct Kirby creations in the same universe and kicking the dial up to eleven. I'm surrounded by genius. There is a genius scaffold, genius collaborators, genius creators, and genius hugging fans. I'm so happy to be along for the ride I could burst."

Acclaimed cover artist Jae Lee had this to say, "It's an honor to be following in the footsteps of the greatest creator this medium has ever known."

"Studying the pencil art of Jack Kirby, trying to capture some of his dynamism and energy, reinvigorate my own drawing and helped me evolve into a much better artist," says the fan-favorite cover artist Mark Buckingham. "Jack Kirby is comics. Not just an artist or writer, but a primal creative force that still exists in the heart of so many modern comics and their creators. It is an absolute delight to be able to contribute cover art to Silver Star and to help honor his legacy."

"When I was told I would be working on characters created by the great Jack Kirby himself, I erupted in crackling Kirby energy dots myself," exclaimed Kirby: Genesis - Silver Star artist Johnny D! "I'm under way with it now, the script rocks and having my pages go through another icon Alex Ross, I'm really going to grow as an artist and deliver my best work by far!"

"As you can see, everyone involved with Kirby: Genesis - Silver Star has such incredible enthusiasm for the project," states Dynamite President and Publisher Nick Barrucci. "We have put together a comic book that shows everyone's undeniable love of the genius that is Jack Kirby, and the passion will show on every page fans read!"


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.


Image Comics Presents Thought Bubble Anthology


Comics thrive on thought bubbles. Without them, letterers wouldn't be needed and writers wouldn't have to write anything because what's the point really? Thought Bubble's often happen to be the crux of a festival in the UK that celebrates sequential art in all its forms and genres. And the fifth year of the festival gets a lovely tie-in with Thought Bubble Anthology from Image Comics, with proceeds going to the charity Banardos.

"Thought Bubble is delighted to be working with one of our favourite publishers, Image Comics, for our first ever anthology," said Lisa Wood, Thought Bubble Festival Director. "We are stunned at the support we have received from everyone who has contributed to the comic and hope it is the first of many more to come!"

The anthology features short stories written by Andy Diggle, Stuart Gordon and Antony Johnston, gorgeous art by Charlie Adlard, Duncan Fegredo and D'Israeli, and a cover by Becky Cloonan, and will also include the six winners of the Northern Sequential Arts Competition.

The Thought Bubble Festival takes place across Leeds from the 14th-20th of November with a massive Comic Con held at the city's largest convention halls on the 19th and 20th. It is now the UK's largest festival celebrating comic art in all its wondrous forms. The Thought Bubble Anthology is an oversized, 24-page comic book that will hit stores November 9 for $2.99.

Full press release after the jump.

OUR MINDS ARE ON THOUGHT BUBBLE
Image Comics Proudly Presents Thought Bubble Anthology in November

Berkeley, CA – 30 August, 2011 – Like Image Comics, UK's Thought Bubble festival celebrates sequential art in all its forms and genres. Now the leading creator-owned publisher is joining forces with the non-profit Thought Bubble organization to celebrate the fifth year of the festival with THOUGHT BUBBLE ANTHOLOGY, a collection whose proceeds will go to the charity Banardos.

THOUGHT BUBBLE ANTHOLOGY will feature short stories written by Andy Diggle, Stuart Gordon, and Antony Johnston, gorgeous art by Charlie Adlard, Duncan Fegredo, and D'Israeli, and a cover by Becky Cloonan, and will also include the six winners of the Northern Sequential Arts Competition.

"Thought Bubble is delighted to be working with one of our favourite publishers, Image Comics, for our first ever anthology," said Lisa Wood, Thought Bubble Festival Director. "We are stunned at the support we have received from everyone who has contributed to the comic and hope it is the first of many more to come!"

The Thought Bubble Festival takes place across Leeds from the 14th-20th of November with a massive Comic Con held at the city's largest convention halls on the 19th and 20th. It is now the UK's largest festival celebrating comic art in all its wondrous forms.

THOUGHT BUBBLE ANTHOLOGY #1 (SEP110389), an oversized, 24-page full color anthology comic book, will be on sale for $2.99 in stores November 9 and is available to order now in the September issue of Previews. For more information, visit www.thoughtbubblefestival.com.

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, visitwww.imagecomics.com.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

New Arrivals: August 31, 2011


Summer is almost behind us and new comics are still in front of us. Especially this Wednesday, when BOOM! Comics unleashes part of the washing cycle in The Rinse #1.

The Rinse #1 isn't a comic about washing machine cycles. Rather, the Gary Phillips written book (illustrated by Marc Laming) is a special debut issue where high finance and low-down greed make ugly appearances. Jeff Sinclair is the premiere laundryman in San Francisco unwillingly pulled into a dangerous gig that involves laundering $25 million in stolen casino skim money.

The book is described as "a grounded, gritty look at the world of money laundering in the vein of Elmore Leonard." Now, fans of Justified know who Elmore Leonard and anything in that realm is something that merits my attention.

Enjoy!


New Arrivals: August 31, 2011

Preview - Vescell #1

In the world of Image Comics, Vescell is an international company that specializes in Vtrane, the transfer of a person's mind and spirit from one body into another. In the real world, Vescell #1 is the first comic in that new series. From Image Comics.

Former Icarus City Detective Mauricio 'Moo' Barrino is now Vescell's best agent, where he's traded in investigating cases for fighting against the demons of fate while trying to reach the heave of his destiny. Life just got real for Mr. Barrino.

The story is written by Enrique Carrion and illustrated by John Upchurch, slated to be in stores tomorrow. Interiors after the jump.









Green River Killer: A True Detective Story Unleashed


I'm a sucker for true crime graphic novels. Torso by Brian Michael Bendis is still one of my favorite graphic novels I've ever read. Maybe it's the grittiness of the subject matter. Or maybe it's just that I'm a big fan of the psychology behind serial killers. Either way, Dark Horse has another graphic novel due out that might end up beside Torso on my bookshelf.

Green River Killer: A True Detective Story is the story of one of America's most notorious killers. In the 1980s the priority of the Seattle-area police was apprehending the Green River Killer, the man responsible for dozens of murdered women. In 1990, with the body count at 48, detective Tom Jensen took the case and eventually interviewed Gary Leon Ridgway about his motivations for the crimes.

The book is written by Jeff Jensen (Tom's son) and features art by Jonathan Case. The 240 page hardcover book will be available in stores tomorrow for $24.99. Full solicitation after the jump.

GREEN RIVER KILLER: A TRUE DETECTIVE STORY (HARDCOVER COLLECTION)

The story of one of America's most notorious killers is revealed in this true-crime comic unlike any other!

Throughout the 1980s, the highest priority of Seattle-area police was the apprehension of the Green River Killer, the man responsible for the murders of dozens of women. In 1990, with the body count numbering at least forty-eight, the case was put in the hands of a single detective, Tom Jensen. After twenty years, when the killer was finally captured with the help of DNA technology, Jensen spent 180 days interviewing Gary Leon Ridgway in an effort to learn his most closely held secrets--an epic confrontation with evil that proved as disturbing and surreal as can be imagined.

Written by Jensen's own son, acclaimed entertainment writer Jeff Jensen, Green River Killer: A True Detective Story presents the ultimate insider's account of America's most prolific serial killer.

* Combines a historic manhunt with a compelling family story!
* Written by Entertainment Weekly's Jeff Jensen!
* The ultimate true crime graphic novel!
* For fans of From Hell and Torso.

Writer:
Jeff Jensen
Artist:
Jonathan Case
Cover Artist:
Jonathan Case
Genre: Non-Fiction, Crime
Publication Date:
August 31, 2011
Format:
B&W, 240 pages, HC, 6" x 9"
Price:
$24.99
Age range:
16
ISBN-10:
1-59582-560-6
ISBN-13:
978-1-59582-560-5

The Dynamite Art of Alex Ross Coming from Dynamite Entertainment


Alex Ross needs no introduction or hype whatsoever. His art is simply phenomenal and is always some of the best stuff you'll see. He's working primarily at Dynamite Entertainment and that work has bore the fruits of a great book in The Dynamite Art of Alex Ross. Containing sketches, designs, layouts and pencils, interior work, covers, and a wealth of unpublished art, The Dynamite Art of Alex Ross can be found at comic stores everywhere this coming November.

"For all people who had been interested in my art before but may not have taken a close look at the many projects I've served on with Dynamite Entertainment, this book is the perfect collection of all of that work in one," says legendary artist Alex Ross. "I'm thrilled to finally have a portfolio-like collection of these images that can stand next to my work with other publishers."

Collecting all of Alex's Dynamite covers and interior art in one complete hardcover volume, along with commentary throughout the book by Alex Ross himself, as well as special bonus material, this is a package not to be missed.

"Alex Ross's artwork hit the comics industry like an atom bomb, ushering in a new era of heroic realism," states Marvels and Kirby: Genesis collaborator Kurt Busiek. "And the shockwaves are still echoing. I've been working with Alex for over 20 years now, and new work from him is always a thrill."

"To say that Alex Ross' work with Dynamite Entertainment contributed to the success of our company is a HUGE understatement of his importance," says Dynamite Entertainment President and Publisher Nick Barrucci. "I am humbled and grateful that Alex has decided to make his home at Dynamite for the past several years. Wait until you see what we have coming up next!"

Full press release after the jump.

Alex Ross' ultra-realistic, painted renditions of iconic superheroes have made him a superstar. In the vein of acclaimed and fan-favorite Alex Ross books such as Mythologies and Rough Justice, we are proud to present the ultimate collection of Alex Ross art from his extensive collaboration with Dynamite, The Dynamite Art of Alex Ross. Containing sketches, designs, layouts and pencils, interior work, covers, and a wealth of unpublished art, The Dynamite Art of Alex Ross can be found at comic stores everywhere this coming November!

Collecting all of Alex's Dynamite covers and interior art in one complete hardcover volume, along with commentary throughout the book by Alex Ross himself, as well as special bonus material, this is a package not to be missed. A must-buy for Alex Ross' legion of fans!

"For all people who had been interested in my art before but may not have taken a close look at the many projects I've served on with Dynamite Entertainment, this book is the perfect collection of all of that work in one," says legendary artist Alex Ross. "I'm thrilled to finally have a portfolio-like collection of these images that can stand next to my work with other publishers."

"Alex Ross's artwork hit the comics industry like an atom bomb, ushering in a new era of heroic realism," states Marvels and Kirby: Genesis collaborator Kurt Busiek. "And the shockwaves are still echoing. I've been working with Alex for over 20 years now, and new work from him is always a thrill."

"To say that Alex Ross' work with Dynamite Entertainment contributed to the success of our company is a HUGE understatement of his importance," says Dynamite Entertainment President and Publisher Nick Barrucci. "I am humbled and grateful that Alex has decided to make his home at Dynamite for the past several years. Wait until you see what we have coming up next!"




Monday, August 29, 2011

Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)



I admit- anyone who reads this column is going to know about my proclivity for all things of the superhero nature. Hank McCoy is not, however, disinterested in the offbeat and independent comic writers' efforts! Not at all!

In fact, as many of you know we are currently living in the sort of ‘renaissance’ of independent comics. That is, while big industry superhero comics continue to rake in big bucks at the box office and in the collected edition rack at Barnes and Noble people have finally sort of begun to appreciate the ‘medium’ of comics. In a way that we hadn’t previously.

So there are plenty of cool, creative, personal stories out there that get comic-booked rather than have a formal narrative. And it’s really interesting to see how an illustrator and writer work together to convey what they want to convey. I’m a fan of Gene Luen Yang, author of American Born Chinese and a host of other award-winning and nominated graphic novels. Lately I’ve been taking a little time out from my neverending quest to accumulate Marvel and DC comics lore to pick up and read Yang's latest Level Up.

The art is simple but it’s got just a hint of anime-ness that makes it evocative and the ‘flow’ of the action is smart and funny. As for the story I think Level Up is a good example of the idea that the best stories are HONEST.

In some ways the plot and the conflict are simple but it’s also very human. Level Up has less to do with video games than it might seem and a lot to do with growing up, moving past your adolescence tendencies and not fighting your career. And I think the kinds of tension the protagonist deals with are ones that we all encounter.

It’s not an easy thing to balance your passions with your work. Too much of either one can leave you aimless and adrift. Call me optimistic, but I’d like to think on a good day there’s room for both in one lifetime as an adult. It isn’t always the way you’d imagine it would be, but that doesn’t mean change is a bad thing.

All of this, of course, just speaks to the books title Level Up. Now a pop-culture household-term, inevitably leveling up in videos games is always a good thing. The question is: does leveling up in real life always a good thing? THIS is the essence of the book!

Level Up is about weathering change more than it’s about Final Fantasy. It’s sweet and short and an enjoyable read. Recommended.

Review - Executive Assistant: Violet #2

Aspen's Executive Assistants are nearing the end of their collective Hit List Agenda. Executive Assistant: Violet #2 is the last series to reach the second of its three issues in the individual arcs (with the exception of Iris). Despite being the last to the party, Executive Assistant: Violet #2 ends on a note just as shocking as the other EAs.

Executive Assistant: Violet #2 is probably filled the most as far as backstory goes. Violet has two noteworthy encounters in this issue. The first is with another Executive Assistant and really just serves to put her in a coincidental awkward situation. The other encounter involves someone on the more nefarious side that puts both her life and her boss Henry's life in jeopardy.

Marc Andreyko is on writing duties on this one and has worked to tie Violet's story into the greater Hit List Agenda storyline. The suspect explosion of a chemical plant in India and Violet's compromised position at the end will no doubt play a larger role in the grand finale of the series. The pencils by Pop Mhan and Lori Hanson make Executive Assistant: Violet #2 stand out among the other issues with sharp facial lines.

The lines are accented by vibrant colors courtesy of John Starr, Peter Steigerwald and David Curiel. The book has a predominantly bluish tone to it that may or may not have been intentional to tie into the Violet aesthetic. It works well for the issue.

My one gripe with Executive Assistant: Violet #2 (as well as Orchid and Lotus) is that the reader is really being introduced to these characters at great length through the Hit List Agenda. The idea of the Executive Assistant as a badass assassin is awesome, but the reader has really only gotten to know Iris, mostly through her ongoing series.

The other three are having tons of backstory crammed into their three issue arcs tied to Hit List Agenda. It feels as if the storyline would have been better served if the other flowers had their own ongoing series. Who knows- maybe Aspen plans to use the Hit List Agenda as a means to launch ongoing series for the other three.

The conclusion of the storyline will surely be gargantuan. Again, Iris is a looming spectre over the other flowers, as she's the number one when it comes to Executive Assistants. Violet seems to have the most potential though as far as character exploration goes. Something about her tale resonates with the reader, more so than the tales of Lotus or Orchid.

Executive Assistant: Violet #2 should be in stores this Wednesday. Interiors below.




Servant of the Bones In Stores Now


Any being who goes by the moniker "Servant of the Bones" is most likely one you want to stay away from. That is, unless you can be exposed to him from the safe confines of a comic book, as in the case of IDW's new adaptation of the Anne Rice work of the same name.

The first issue of Servant of the Bones the comic is now available in stores. In the comic book, the demon Azriel sets out to discover who murdered her, only to find that there's something greater at play and the fate of the world is at stake. Once a human in ancient Babylon, Azriel is a spirit of rage and terror, who gradually rediscovers his humanity through holy vengeance and spiritual love.

The title features co-writing by Mariah McCourt and illustrations by Renae DeLiz and Ray Dillon. There's also a healthy does of variant covers, including a Jenny Frison cover and a special Anne Rice signed edition!

Full press release after the jump.

New Adaptation of Servant of the Bones Starts Now

New series debuts with best-selling author Anne Rice

San Diego, CA (August 26, 2011) — IDW Publishing today announced that the first issue of the new comic adaptation of Servant of the Bones is now available in comic stores throughout North America. New York Times best-selling author Anne Rice (Interview with a Vampire, Queen of the Damned, The Vampire Lestat) brings one of her richest stories to IDW in this six-art tale of murder, demonic revenge, and the redemptive power of faith.

Rice, among the most iconic authors in horror, takes fans back to the time of ancient Babylon to tell the story of Azriel, the Servant of the Bones. Available now, the first issue of IDW’s SERVANT OF THE BONES comic series tells the story of a beautiful young woman, who is brutally slain in the streets of New York City. The demon Azriel sets out to discover who murdered her, only to find a far more sinister plot that could end the world. Once a human in ancient Babylon, Azriel is a spirit of rage and terror, who gradually rediscovers his humanity through holy vengeance and spiritual love.

Once again, Anne Rice fans are able to enjoy her talent in delivering melancholic and psychologically charged moods through this newly adapted version of one of her most celebrated works. IDW’s adaptation is brought to life by the New York Times best-selling co-writer of the True Blood comic, Mariah McCourt and ornately illustrated by the New York Times best-selling art team of Renae DeLiz and Ray Dillon (The Last Unicorn).

Fans are encouraged to talk to their retailers about the SERVANT OF THE BONES variant covers, including a Jenny Frison cover, and a special Anne Rice signed edition!

SERVANT OF THE BONES #1 ($3.99, 32 pages, full color) is now available in comic stores throughout North America.

John Stanisci at Art Auction in Alexandria


What do you get when you add an artist to an auction? In most cases, it would be something to benefit the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. While they're certainly a cause worth raising money for, there are other organizations that need money as well.

On Saturday, September 24, starting at 7 PM with a preview will be the Art Auction in Alexandria, hosted by the Alexandria Jaycees and King Street Cats. The crown jewel in terms of appearances at the show will be none other than John Stanisci, a professional illustrator for Marvel and DC Comics for 18 years.

The auction will feature art in all media and price ranges, including a broad collection framed artwork of original oils, watercolors, serigraphs, lithographs, giclees, mixed media and offset lithographs priced at 30% to 50% below normal retail. Other objects d'art - sculpture, European blown glass, sports and music memorabilia, and home decorative items are also available. Some of John Stanisci’s works will also be available for purchase at the auction.

Tickets are $20.00 per person in advance. To purchase your ticket to the auction, contact Amy or visit http://www.alexjaycees.org/art.php.

Full press release after the jump.

Meet John Stanisci, Comic Book Illustrator

Art Auction Fundraiser, September 24

Meet John Stanisci, a professional illustrator for Marvel and DC Comics for 18 years. John has worked on characters like Spider-man, The Hulk, and Batman, and most recently Batman Beyond.

John will be the special guest artist at an Art Auction Fundraiser hosted by the Alexandria Jaycees and King Street Cats. All proceeds from the Art Auction will benefit the community activities of these two organizations.

The Art Auction will be held on Saturday, September 24, 2011, at the Durant Arts Center, 1605 Cameron Street in Alexandria. The event begins with a preview of the art at 7:00pm followed by the auction at 8:00pm.

The auction will feature art in all media and price ranges, including a broad collection framed artwork of original oils, watercolors, serigraphs, lithographs, giclees, mixed media and offset lithographs priced at 30% to 50% below normal retail. Other objects d'art - sculpture, European blown glass, sports and music memorabilia, and home decorative items are also available. Some of John Stanisci’s works will also be available for purchase at the auction.

Tickets are $20.00 per person in advance. To purchase your ticket to the auction, contact Amy at amy.alexjaycees@gmail.com or visit http://www.alexjaycees.org/art.php.

Enjoy a fun evening out while supporting two great organizations – Alexandria Jaycees and King Street Cats. Purchase your Art Auction tickets today!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Defense with the BoomStick


(Disclaimer: This post is an ongoing story set in a world where zombies have taken over and people are fighting to survive anyway they can. Originally was a post of news and tip to help survivors make it one more day alive, but now has became a story of my fight after being bitten and partially cured to walk as half zombie among them.)

Another week gone by and more ground covered taking me closer to my next target.

Over the past week I've been pouring over the map I lifted off of those bandits that were chasing me down, deciding my path of attack and whom to target first. Most of their arms depots look to be about the heaviest fortified positions out of all of them, which makes complete sense. If you lose those supplies that can be game over. Figured it would be best to hit one or two of their smaller outposts and enclaves to get them guessing on where I might hit next and generally make life miserable for them all.

I headed off towards some outposts located a good distance away from the last battle I had with them so they wouldn’t have a chance to fortify or figure I would hit it first. As of now I'm on an outcropping overlooking one of the first small outpost on my list to hit, but it seems the map I grabbed hasn’t been updated recently as this place seems to have a few more guards and defenses. That throws a little monkey wrench in my plan in thinking this one was gonna be easy to take out, but I just have to add a little more caution on my part and try to let zombies soften them up for me.

I have seen groups of zombies here and there in the surrounding area on top of the pack that were at their gate, although they took care of them pretty easily. I think for a distraction to work I'll need a large group of zombies that they can’t dispatch too quickly that will allow me to get in and open them up from the inside.

I wonder if it's wrong to booby trap some of the zombies with explosives I have and use them to get close enough to the gate or wall and open it up that way. If the group is large enough it’s a good chance some of the booby-trapped zombies will make it in close enough to use the explosives; otherwise blowing them up will just destroy all of them.

Now with a plan in mind I need some bait to start rounding up zombies to put my plan into action. I just need to nab one of their scouts or lead a patrol off into the woods so I can take them out and use them as bait to lure as large number of zombies together as I can. Then use the explosives on some of the zombies, lure them back towards their outpost to get close to the wall and give me my opening.

I'll probably have to show myself to draw their fire away from the zombies for a bit and that's going to be the tough part- making sure I don’t get my own ass shot. I am kicking this plan into gear tomorrow and hopefully will be broadcasting some good news for next week. Until then keep surviving.

Preview - Malinky Robot: Collected Stories & Other Bits TPB


Robots-when they're not seeking to overthrow the human race-can be wicked awesome. They're even more awesome when they're freewheeling in the pages of comics, especially in a collected book such as Malinky Robot: Collected Stories & Other Bits TPB.

Created, written and illustrated by Sonny Liew, the collection includes tales of street urchins Atari and Oliver out to steal bikes, watch Giant Robot movies and spend lots of loot. The stories within are critically acclaimed even, blending "dystopian sci-fi and indie sensibilities into a uniquely charming, off-kilter world." The $16.99 edition even includes pin-ups by Mike Allred, Roger Landgridge and Skottie Young.

The collection is in stores now with interiors after the jump.





Flash Gordon Returns to Dynamite Entertainment


In their effort to secure rights and comics for just about every old school comic book character there is, Dynamite Entertainment has added one more iconic character to their stable. Flash Gordon is making a comeback at the stick of explosive publisher.

Flash Gordon - Zeitgeist #1 debuts this November from writer Eric Trautmann and artist Daniel Lindro. The work is based on a story and designs by-you guessed it-Alex Ross.

"I couldn't be happier about this project," stated writer Eric Trautmann. "It is a genuine treat to be able to let my inner 'pulpster' out, and write in an idiom I rarely get to play in, which has a rich core of optimism and innocence. We're very much approaching the comic as if it were the Flash Gordon movie we'd all want to see. Add to that, I've adored Flash Gordon for as long as I've been reading, and the opportunity to play with Alex Raymond's material -- in a way I don't think has been done before -- is truly exciting. The Raymond strips were just so plot-dense, with a sense of 'anything goes' that I look for -- often unsuccessfully -- in contemporary comics. And, of course, several times a week, I check my e-mail, and find a dozen amazing pieces of artwork from Alex Ross; I'd be hard-pressed to find someone who has a greater understanding of the characters, or who harbors more affection for them, than Alex. He has laser-like clarity about the look and feel of the characters, the setting, the story, technology, making it all look new, and at the same time quite familiar. He's an exceptional 'vision holder' for our tale."

Flash Gordon's story begins with three valiant humans in Flash Gordon, Dale Arden and Dr. Hans Zarkov being taken from Earth and traveling to the planet Mongo. Their exploits are legendary, battling the machinations and terror schemes of the dreaded emperor Ming, the All-Seeing Ruler of Mongo.

Alex Ross had this to say about Flash Gordon - Zeitgeist, "Finally, after all this time, I'm working on a Flash Gordon series that brings the best I have to contribute to this legendary character and forerunner of all comic books!"

Full press release after the jump.

FLASH GORDON RETURNS AT DYNAMITE!

PICK UP FLASH GORDON - ZEITGEIST #1 THIS NOVEMBER AT COMIC BOOK STORES EVERYWHERE!

August 25th, 2011 - Runnemede, NJ - The iconic legend Flash Gordon is making his dynamic splash back into comics with Dynamite Entertainment this November! Flash Gordon - Zeitgeist #1 is written by Eric Trautmann (Vampirella, Red Sonja), from a story and designs by Alex Ross (Project: Superpowers, Kingdom Come, Marvels), and illustrated by Daniel Lindro!

As Flash Gordon's story begins, it is a time of two-fisted swashbuckling, of fearsome threats and wild adventure-and of ever-growing threats on the horizon. Three valiant humans -- Flash Gordon, Dale Arden and Dr. Hans Zarkov -- are plucked from the Earth, traveling to the distant planet Mongo. Their exploits are legendary, battling the machinations and terror schemes of the dreaded emperor Ming, the All-Seeing Ruler of Mongo. But they did not fight alone! And coming up, witness a startling meeting with Ming the Merciless! With the fate of our world helpless, can even Flash Gordon save us?

Alex Ross had this to say about Flash Gordon - Zeitgeist, "Finally, after all this time, I'm working on a Flash Gordon series that brings the best I have to contribute to this legendary character and forerunner of all comic books!"

"I couldn't be happier about this project," stated writer Eric Trautmann. "It is a genuine treat to be able to let my inner 'pulpster' out, and write in an idiom I rarely get to play in, which has a rich core of optimism and innocence. We're very much approaching the comic as if it were the Flash Gordon movie we'd all want to see. Add to that, I've adored Flash Gordon for as long as I've been reading, and the opportunity to play with Alex Raymond's material -- in a way I don't think has been done before -- is truly exciting. The Raymond strips were just so plot-dense, with a sense of 'anything goes' that I look for -- often unsuccessfully -- in contemporary comics. And, of course, several times a week, I check my e-mail, and find a dozen amazing pieces of artwork from Alex Ross; I'd be hard-pressed to find someone who has a greater understanding of the characters, or who harbors more affection for them, than Alex. He has laser-like clarity about the look and feel of the characters, the setting, the story, technology, making it all look new, and at the same time quite familiar. He's an exceptional 'vision holder' for our tale."

"Dynamite has added another classic character to our growing library of comics," says Dynamite Entertainment President and Publisher Nick Barrucci. "Eric has put together an amazing story and all Flash Gordon fans will fall in love with this book, just as I have!"

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 libraries, 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.

Creators of Rune Keepers Brag About CG


Comic books are getting crazy advanced. Sure there's the digital thing, but there's also multiple ways to get the art going besides the tried and true pencil and paper method. Rune Keepers: Remnants #1 is a graphic novel that is taking a slightly different path in the art department. David A. Adams explains the benefits of doing the book in CG.

"Think about reading a digital comic, the story and art building up to a climax and then watching that climax as a full CG animated video clip, similar to seeing the cool cut scene at the end of a video game. Because we are essentially creating the graphic novel series the same way a CG animated film is produced, such ‘hybrid’ forms of digital comics are possible. In addition, if the RUNE KEEPERS: REMNANTS series is a success, we plan to release a full animated version – obviously using the same models and art."

Adams believes this new style offers several advantages. "Though we aren’t the first to create a digital comic using 3D models, we do intend to take this style to an entirely new level. And even though it’s more time consuming and a bit more expensive than standard comic book art, we feel it’s important in this new transition to digital media and distribution, to create art assets that can be used in new ways and in any form of media so that future RUNE KEEPERS products will all have a uniform look and style that fans will come to expect," said Adams.

Adams teamed up with author Richard A Knaak and artist Steve Clarke to produce the unique series.

“RUNE KEEPERS is not just about looks though. The story itself blends elements of science fiction and fantasy in what we feel is a unique way.” says Adams. Though REMNANTS is the first of many planned series and spin offs in this new exciting “RUNE KEEPERS” universe, the book stays true to the classic elements of a tradition comic book series with plot, action and bigger than life characters. In this first series, an evil conquering species known as the Thruld have discovered that a Coalition of planets is hiding evidence of an ancient but super advanced technology on remote worlds spread throughout the galaxy.

It's interesting that more and more comics are embracing digital for all aspects of the process. It certainly makes sense and if the customers don't seem to mind you can't really fault the creators.

Full press release and trailer after the jump.

"RUNE KEEPERS: REMNANTS" USES 3D CG ART IN PRODUCTION OF NEW GRAPHIC NOVEL

The revolutionary short graphic novel "RUNE KEEPERS: REMNANTS #1" by 3D Warp Entertainment Inc. is the first issue in the new “RUNE KEEPERS” series recently released to the public and it has been created using 3D models rather than the traditional pencil and ink method. Focusing on producing a more unique and flexible product, David A. Adams explained that doing the book series in CG not only looks great, but also takes advantage of where the future of digital comics may be headed.

Since the trend has been shifting for the past several years toward the digital distribution of nearly all entertainment media, Adams says, "Think about reading a digital comic, the story and art building up to a climax and then watching that climax as a full CG animated video clip, similar to seeing the cool cut scene at the end of a video game. Because we are essentially creating the graphic novel series the same way a CG animated film is produced, such ‘hybrid’ forms of digital comics are possible. In addition, if the RUNE KEEPERS: REMNANTS series is a success, we plan to release a full animated version – obviously using the same models and art."

Adams believes this new style offers several advantages. "Though we aren’t the first to create a digital comic using 3D models, we do intend to take this style to an entirely new level. And even though it’s more time consuming and a bit more expensive than standard comic book art, we feel it’s important in this new transition to digital media and distribution, to create art assets that can be used in new ways and in any form of media so that future RUNE KEEPERS products will all have a uniform look and style that fans will come to expect," said Adams.

Adams teamed up with New York Times bestselling author Richard A Knaak and artist Steve Clarke to produce the unique series. This dynamic trio is shooting beyond galaxies with this innovative style and it is sure to not only entertain comic book readers, but very well may spawn a new following from video game and cg animation fans.

“RUNE KEEPERS is not just about looks though. The story itself blends elements of science fiction and fantasy in what we feel is a unique way.” says Adams. Though REMNANTS is the first of many planned series and spin offs in this new exciting “RUNE KEEPERS” universe, the book stays true to the classic elements of a tradition comic book series with plot, action and bigger than life characters. In this first series, an evil conquering species known as the Thruld have discovered that a Coalition of planets is hiding evidence of an ancient but super advanced technology on remote worlds spread throughout the galaxy.

Modestly priced at less than a dollar to download and once purchased can be viewed on most devices, RUNE KEEPERS is already available through Graphicly and Comixology.

The RUNE KEEPERS website allows fans to read free background stories, download art work and (at a later date) view free CG animated shorts and digital web comics to supplement the new series.

3D Warp Entertainment Inc. is a privately held corporation located in Irving, Texas. The graphic novel series is currently being independently funded and creates, develops, produces and publishes sci-fi/fantasy intellectual properties with the long term goal of turning each property into a successful entertainment franchise. The company was founded in 2002 by David A Adams and in 2007 New York Times bestselling author Richard A Knaak became a partner in the firm.


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Review - Executive Assistant: Lotus #2

Lotus is one of the "flowers" that are Executive Assistants, all of whom are part of the global Hit List Agenda. Executive Assistant: Lotus #2 continues the saga of Rani, an EA to a man named Virat. The title is written by Vince Hernandez and illustrated by Oliver Nome (colors by Emilio Lopez and lettering by Josh Reed).

Executive Assistant: Lotus #2 is more about exploring the character of Lotus than anything else. She's been faithful to Virat in his quest to destroy Pakistan for the sake of India and it's nice to see Hernandez has worked in real world conflict as the backdrop for the story. The rest of the issue really showcases the talents of Lotus as an EA, namely in her close-quarters combat and jet-setting skills.

The issue moves along fairly predictably (helped along by Lotus telegraphing her every move and decision with inner monologue boxes). There's a twist at the end that sets up the third issue to be something epic. Executive Assistant: Iris is also "haunting" the Hit List Agenda storyline as the definitive Executive Assistant.

The writing by Hernandez is rather uneventful when it's all said and done. This isn't a knock on Hernandez. Rather, the second issue really just moved the players into position for the third issue and doesn't have much in the way of action. Oliver Nome's illustrations feature clean lines. There are a lot close-ups of the characters and add some intensity to the scenes. The colors by Lopez are somewhat muted and darker, keeping with the tone of the story.

Executive Assistant: Lotus #2 is similar to the other EA stories. Lotus is faced with a tough situation and has to get out of it, all the while Iris is looming as the go-to Executive Assistant. It's a fairly slow moving issue and has little in the way of action, but readers of the Hit List Agenda won't want to miss this one. It should be in stores now and interiors are below.