Friday, May 30, 2014

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 it was a post of news and tips to help survivors make it one more day alive, but now it has became a story of my fight to survive and to keep on living.)

Year 5. Week 40.

Guess some zombies heard about our actions in northern California and wanted to come play. About a thousand or so came up from the south and hit us as we were finishing up cleaning out this small community. The funneling nature of the streets allowed us to get a defensive line set and kill a good number of undead bastards before retreating further back. We let a little air support take out any mobs that were moving around to flank us and had the situation under control in a few hours.

On our side there weren't many casualties except for a handful when a small pack got the drop on them. I think our unit is fighting much more cohesively and are communicating as well as trusting each other a lot better. With being such a ragtag group it would take some time for a united front to emerge, but with each battle and victory we are becoming that much tighter. Morale is certainly higher than it's ever been for a lot of us as over the past few years there has not been much to keep ones hopes up.

Review - Trees #1

"They stand on the surface of the Earth like trees exerting their silent pressure on the world as if there were no-one here."

Landscaping is a job on its own. Maintaining a lawn, weeding a garden, trimming back tree all requires hard work and some knowledge as to the best approach. Sometimes though, there are stubborn aspects of it that doesn't seem to budge no matter how hard you try. And in the case of Trees #1 from Image Comics, humanity quickly learns that some structures feature an amplified stubbornness that trees gain from their hearty roots. The issue is written by Warren Ellis, illustrated by Jason Howard and lettered by Fonografiks.

Dynamite Announces Shaft Publishing Deal

Dynamite Entertainment is named after dynamite, which is explosive by nature. That explosiveness comes in the form of powder crammed into a shaft prior to detonation. The naming works out well, mainly because the publisher recently announced an agreement to bring John Shaft into the Dynamite Universe. The agreement covers not only original comics and graphic novels, but also new prose, and includes the right to re-print all existing Shaft novels.

Ernest Tidyman was quoted on the origins of Shaft: "The idea came out of my awareness of both the social and literary situation in a changing city. There are winners, survivors & losers in the New York scheme of things. It was time for a black winner, whether he was a private detective or an obstetrician."

Most people are familiar with John Shaft via the movies, the original 1971 film and its two sequels, all starring actor Richard Roundtree in the title role, which helped spawn the 70's blaxploitation film movement and make Shaft a household name. There was also a film in 2000 with Samuel L. Jackson reprising the role as Shaft's nephew. John Shaft is a fictional character created by writer Ernest Tidyma.

These novels have long been out of print and Dynamite intends to bring these back and make them available again. In addition, the new prose stories and original graphic novels will be the first new Shaft stories, outside of the movie, since Tidyman's passing. Further editorial plans for new comics and prose will be announced at a later date.

"John Shaft is an American Icon, with feature films starring Richard Roundtree and Samuel L. Jackson. Shaft has resonated in popular culture because he's such a cool, compelling character. We couldn't be more happy that we're getting a chance to tell new stories in multiple mediums, with all new prose in addition to Original Graphic Novels, and create a publishing program that will bring Shaft back to the forefront of pop culture, where he belongs!" said Nick Barrucci, CEO/Publisher of Dynamite.

Full press release below.

Archaia to Make The Collector Available in English

The Collector HC

Sergio Toppi has a reputation as one of the greatest sequential masters of our time. His work has influenced generations of comic artists and illustrators with his beautifully detailed line work, including Sean Gordon Murphy, Simone Bianchi, Walt Simonson, Bill Sienkiewicz and Francesco Francavilla. And now, Archaia is posed to release The Collector, Toppi’s longest-running original series, now translated into English for the first time since its debut in 1984.

“Not everyone realizes how much of an influence Toppi was to some of today’s most successful creators,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “When Archaia released SHARAZ-DE early last year, new fans began to discover what a classic illustrator he truly was. Now, with this English translation of THE COLLECTOR, one of his seminal works, it’s our pleasure to continue to publish the masterworks of one of the all-time greats.”

While this oversized edition serves as much as an art book as a comic, the adventures of the globe-scouring, daredevil Collector will appeal to fans of the Indiana Jones movies, Five Ghosts or Doc Savage. The Collector seeks out rare and mysterious artifacts across the world. He is as at home in the salons of Paris as he is in the jungles of Borneo. Set against the backdrop of late 19th-century colonialism. This edition features an introduction by Sean Gordon Murphy (The Wake). The Collector hardcover graphic novel arrives from Archaia in comic shops on September 3rd with a cover price of $34.99. It's available for pre-order through comic shops now.

Full press release below.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Review - Doctor Spektor: Master of the Occult #1

"I'm at the ruins of Norway's 13th century Hamar Cathedral. My global pursuit of an ancient evil ends here, with its death...or mine."

Society today is rather obsessed with the idea that anyone can be a star. And more often than not, people will go to great lengths to achieve that goal, even if it means putting their entire life on display for the world to see. Some of us though are more interesting and capable than others in that regard and Dynamite Entertainment ventures down this path in Doctor Spektor: Master of the Occult #1. The issue is written by Mark Waid, illustrated by Neil Edwards, colored by Jordan Boyd and lettered by Marshall Dillon.

Torsobear: Yarns from Toyburg Hits Kickstarter

If you find yourself in Toyburg, there's two people you can trust. The thing is though, they're not exactly people. Ruxby and Hazbrow are childrens’ toys who are thrown into a chilling noir cycle of murder, deceit and intrigue, where the horror of events stands in stark contrast to the bright and cheerful world in which they take place. They've previously appeared in Torsobear as part of the Outré anthology, but now they're hoping to get some more action, courtesy of Kickstarter.

Expanding on the original short story, Yarns From Toyburg pulls a host of new and established creators into exploring the twisted world of Fluffy Noir. The toys of Toyburg blissfully enjoy their waking lives. Most will never encounter anything nasty. But when they sleep, all will experience the strange and sometimes disturbing violation of The Playtime. Sometimes, they remember. The book will be offered via a Kickstarter campaign and first week pledges will get a special extra reward of a sketch from the creator on the inside front cover of the book, in addition to any other rewards for their pledge level.

The work will include a bunch of short stories, including

Clean heart, dirty paws – Brett Uren
Dress to impress - Frank Martin/Joel Cotejar
Rich toy, poor toy - Grainne McEntee, Matt Rooke
Some assembly required - Cy Dethan/Peter Mason/Nic Wilkinson
She sang for buttons, she unstitched my heart – Brett Uren/Harold Saxon/Mick Schubert
The collector - Glenn Møane/Carlos Nicolas Zamudio/Jon Scrivens
A new hopelessness - Kieran Squires and Faye Harmon
The big wind up - Janos Honkonen/Saoirse Louise Towler/Mick Schubert
Home invasion – Brett Uren/Brockton McKinney/Harold Saxon
Sour in the sweet - Jake Young/Randy Haldeman/Brett Uren
We all fall down, playing it the hard way – Brett Uren

The stories all welcome readers to the city of Toyburg, where the streets are teeming with crime, passion, and murders most foul. They are walked (for the most part) by grim detectives, burned-out has-beens, femme fatales and tragic heroes. The dismembered bodies of teddy bears are being found in back alleys of Mindy Mile district, and it’s up to our hero, rookie detective Ruxby Bear and his partner officer Hazbrow to solve this string of murders, no matter how high and far the clues take them. Between cases, we take a look into the lives of Toyburg’s citizens, police and criminals. No matter where you turn, this city has something sinister hidden just behind the storybook surface.

While the Kickstarter isn't live yet, you can sign up to get an alert when it is at Full press release below.

BOOM! Studios Launches BOOM! Tube

BOOM! Studios is nothing if not persistent, churning out all manner of offshoot publishing brands, comic adaptations of film (and vice versa) and even finding time to acquire other publishers like Archaia. When they're not singing everything is awesome and making an impact in comics, they're finding other ways to continue to do so. Their latest endeavor? The launch of BOOM! Tube, an all-new weekly series from the BOOM! Studios' YouTube channel dedicated to sharing the latest news on comics, creators and announcements from the publisher. The series will provide weekly news on the latest titles coming out from BOOM! Studios and its imprints, including Archaia, KaBOOM! and BOOM! Box.

“This is what we mean when we say, ‘Come innovate with us.’ We’re always looking for new ways to engage with our fans and since YouTube is one of the largest social networks on the planet, this was the obvious next step,” said BOOM! Studios Vice President of Publishing & Marketing Filip Sablik. “BOOM! Tube is a way for us to share our passion for our latest releases, along with what goes on behind-the-scenes, special creator interviews, and a few fun surprises along the way.”

BOOM! Tube will be hosted by Stephanie Hocutt and will feature a rotating cast of guest co-hosts who will come in to offer their unique perspective on the coming week’s BOOM! Studios releases. The show kicked off yesterday, May 28th, with a look at this week’s new comic releases, including the debut of Clive Barker's Nightbreed #1.

Full press release below.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

For as many characters as we commemorate in pop culture, there's just as many places. Science fiction and fantasy is all about location, location, location, from the streets of Gotham City to the mountains of Mt. Doom in Middle Earth.

I've already commented on the fact that I'm looking forward to good things from Gotham. Hinging a show around a place, instead of a person, is a somewhat old-school approach to writing a story. I mean, think about it: isn't that what most soap opera's are about? Dallas? St. Elsewhere? Cheers?

For me, growing up, I was obsessed with Twin Peaks. OBSESSED. I remember watching it than staying up in my room, having trouble sleeping and thinking "what the hell did I just watch!?" Killer Bob still freaks me out to this day. It's sort of funny how this brief, two season show--likely never to be revisited by its creators Mark Frost and David Lynch-- has gone on to influence so much. Silent Hill, Alan Wake, The Killing, many television shows and video games do you think have been modeled after Twin Peaks, or at least guided by it?

Review - The Last Broadcast #1

" don't look like a magician."

Magicians face a level of scrutiny that few other performers do. If it's not struggling to convince skeptics that the magic is "real," it's convincing the audience that the trick is exciting. The Last Broadcast #1 from Archaia Entertainment offers a mix of both, not to mention the involvement of a previously great magician as well. The issue is written by André Sirangelo, illustrated by Gabriel Iumazark and lettered by Deron Bennett.

Return to Literature for Tanpopo

Exploring worlds of classic literature is always exciting for the mind. Adding illustrations make those journeys even more exciting and Camilla D'Errico is the artist for the job in Tanporo Vol. 2 from BOOM! Studios. d’Errico continues the story of innocent young Tanpopo as she learns the depths of human emotion, led by mysterious guides who might wish her more harm than good in this manga-style, hardcover volume that comes with a beautiful slipcase.

“Camilla’s work is so visually stunning—as an artist, she has a style and point-of-view that’s uniquely hers,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “TANPOPO is a book that effortlessly sparks your imagination and tugs at your heartstrings.”

The second hardcover edition continues Tanpopo's journey into human emotion through the works of Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, and a foray into 1001 Arabian Nights. In Tanporo Vol. 2, a fresh wound of the heart is torn open by the unmasking of Kuro's deadly deception with Ni. His lessons in human emotion push Tanpopo to the limits of her resolve. Is this part of his plan as her otherworldly guide or has he underestimated Tanpopo’s dogged independence?

Tanporo Vol. 2 arrives in comic shops today with a cover price of $24.99 under Diamond order code FEB141054 and wherever books are sold on June 3rd under ISBN number 978-1-60886-337-2. Full press release below.

SCAM Ultimate Collection Release Party

Picking up on a good scam is something that takes talent and patience. Sometimes though, there are scams that are actually less malicious and want you to fall for them. For instance, take the SCAM Ultimate Collection, hitting stores today. In honor of its release, Joe Mulvey and a crew of NYC-based contributors will be at Forbidden Planet from 6-8 PM for a release party. The SCAM Ultimate Collection is a 270-page over-sized hardcover that includes SCAM, as well as the SCAMthology, which features more than 100-pages of unpublished stories by creators including Amy Chu, Ben McCool, Rich Douek and Deron Bennett.

"This is the ultimate version of a book I've had in my head for twenty years," said Mulvey. "The release party at Forbidden Planet will be a great opportunity to get the book into new readers' hands, and celebrate with some of the creators who helped make it even better."

The SCAM Ultimate Collection was made possible by a successful Kickstarter campaign that wrapped up in February raising more that $27,000. Books will also begin shipping to Kickstarter backers this week, precisely on schedule for the June fulfillment date promised during the campaign. Mulvey will also be giving out complimentary signed copies of SCAM #0: Crosswords to attendees of the Forbidden Planet NYC event while supplies last. New York area Kickstarter backers have the opportunity to pick up their rewards in person from Joe and the crew. Books can also be purchased from Forbidden Planet during the event for $34.99.

SCAM Ultimate Collection is now available on Amazon and the SCAMthology is available on Comixology. Full press release below.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Review - C.O.W.L. #1

"Are you worried you haven't heard from the Mayor yet?"

Unions typically elicit one of two responses. Either you think they're great for workers, reinforcing their rights that are often sacrificed at the expense of profits for larger companies. Or you think they're inefficient, slowing down work and increasing associated costs. Regardless of where you fall in terms of opinion, there are unions for all manner of employment. If the world had superheroes, it's likely some of them would face similar opinions about unions, opinions on full display in C.O.W.L. #1 from Image Comics. The issue is written by Kyle Higgins and Alec Siegel, with art by Rod Reis and letters by Troy Peteri.

Preview - Dejah of Mars #1

Following the events of Warlord of Mars #100, John Carter has gone missing. And to find him there’s nothing Dejah Thoris won’t break. No one she won’t hurt. No hornet’s nest she won’t kick. But the Warlord of Mars stole an important Helium artifact before he disappeared, so not only is the princess on her own this time – she has to get Carter before anyone else does.

Dejah of Mars #1 features a story by Mark Rahner and art by Jethro Morales. It hits stores May 28 with interiors below.

V-Wars Being Developed as Series

The old saying goes "there can never be enough vampires." It may be old only because vampires are so old and they're just so darn popular these days. IDW Entertainment wants in on the action, partnering with Entertainment One Television to develop V-Wars as the first series project under the recently announced first-look co-production agreement. Tim Schlattman will write the pilot, as well as serve as an executive producer on the series. Ted Adams and David Ozer from IDW Entertainment, John Morayniss and Benedict Carver from eOne Television and David Alpert andRick Jacobs from Circle of Confusion will also executive produce.

“This is a story that takes everything the audience thinks they know about vampires and throws it out the window. They're not the undead. They’re us.” said Schlattman.

V-Wars is being developed as direct-to-series and is based on the acclaimed IDW Publishing property written by New York Times best-selling and multiple Bram Stoker Award®-winning author Jonathan Maberry. It's set in a world transformed by a catastrophic environmental event that releases a millennial-old virus that once triggered, affects individuals differently depending on their DNA. The result is vampires as unique as their cultures and a response from those unaffected humans like never seen before.

“V-Wars is the perfect project to kick off our partnership with IDW Entertainment, and lays the groundwork for a slate of ambitious projects to come,” said Morayniss, Chief Executive Officer, eOne Television. “We are thrilled to have attracted such a huge talent as Tim to bring this gritty post-apocalyptic world to life.”

Full press release below.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Review - Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1

"You will not remember that I forgot to leave the toilet seat down."

Having superpowers makes one special. Needed. Frustrated. All of the above. It's hard having powers; it's even harder having powers and a social life. There's supposed to be a happy medium between the two somewhere, but finding that medium is pretty hard. Especially when your powers revolve around mind manipulation, as in Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1 from Dark Horse Comics. The issue is written by Fred Van Lente, illustrated by Freddie Williams II, colored by Jeremy Colwell and lettered by Nate Piekos of Blambot.

Preview - Chew: Revival #1

Image Comics loves to Chew. They're such big fans that they've decided to enlist a who's who of talent to work on Chew: Revival #1. The book will feature a story by John Layman and Tim Seeley and is illustrated by Rob Guillory and Mike Norton.

Tony Chu heads to Wisconsin in two all-new original tales by the creative teams of both critically acclaimed titles. A great jumping-on point for readers who've heard how damn good these titles are on their own, and a twisted delight for those already in the know.

Check out the book in stores May 28 with interiors below.

Thomas Alsop Manhattan's Newest Reality Star

Thomas Alsop #1 Cover A

Manhattan sees its fair share of chaos and destruction. The town is number one on the list of cities looking to be under attack from all manner of alien invasion, zombies, name it. They city has its heroes to defend it, but one of those heroes may be getting a bit more. In fact, Thomas Alsop is getting a reality television show and looking to make some money off of it. In June, BOOM! Studios is set to debut Thomas Alsop, written by Chris Miskiewicz and illustrated by Palle Schmidt.

“Thomas Alsop is kind of a dicey guy,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “He’s a lovable rogue with the weight of his family—his family tree even—on his shoulders. Chris and Palle have created a complex character and a frenetic world that’s bursting with magic, history, mayhem, shenanigans, familial burdens, personal demons, real demons, boozy nights, and a deeply rooted mythology that it’s all grounded in. This series is crackling with the energy of new creators unleashing their talents; I can’t wait for readers to meet Chris, Palle...and THOMAS ALSOP.”

The story features a thoroughly modern warlock who fights demons as the current “Hand of the Island,” a title that’s been passed down through generations of occult warriors. Fans of John Constantine and Dr. Strange will love this new take on the magic-wielding hero who battles demons on the streets…and in his own mind. Thomas Alsop #1 arrives in comic shops on June 18th with a cover price of $3.99 under Diamond order code APR140970. The issue ships with a main cover by Palle Schmidt and an incentive cover available in a limited quantity from Dean Haspiel.

Full press release below.

Friday, May 23, 2014

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 it was a post of news and tips to help survivors make it one more day alive, but now it has became a story of my fight to survive and to keep on living.)

Year 5. Week 39.

We're a force on the move and ready for action. With support from the government survivor camp in Washington and forces assisting from Colorado, we're beginning the zombie purge here in northern California. So far it's going well as we've cleared out about three towns of zombies and secured them with fences and barricades. After getting all of these places cleared out and secured, we plan on moving north to Oregon and start clearing out those places as well (trying to steer clear of Portland).

Since most of the larger cities were bombed out, there are too many hidden spots for zombies and places for ambushes to venture into any city. Oregon shouldn’t take too much time to clear and make secure as most of it is woodland and open ranges of land. It’s after Oregon that will be the problematic part, as we're not going to bother at the moment doing central or southern California. Those parts of the country will have too many zombies, because of the amount of large cities that dot the coast. I see perhaps eventually getting to those parts, but for now we'll have to focus on where we can do the best help.

Review - Nim #1

"...and whatever happens, I've to to be...brave."

If everyone had a sword capable of speech and magic, there'd likely be a lot more adventurers in the world. Well, very few do have that and Nim #1 features a character given such a gift. The issue is written and illustrated by Mark Nappin.

Lumberjanes #1 Gets Second Printing

Lumberjanes #1 2nd Print

Why do we love camping so much? Is it the campfires? The s'mores? The strange creatures inhabiting the surrounding forests and rivers? There's something about the last one in the list and BOOM! Studios taps into that for Lumberjanes #1. And it's so popular that the first printing has sold out, giving the Noelle Stevenson and Grace Ellis created book a second printing. The quirky series is about five girls kicking butt at summer camp that has recently been made into an ongoing series due to the overwhelming response from fans.

“Rushing to a second print on LUMBERJANES was the easiest decision we’ve made since...publishing LUMBERJANES,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “Now that the series is ongoing it’s even more important to us to make sure the first issue is widely available for retailers and fans.”

Jo, April, Mal, Molly and Ripley are five best pals determined to have an awesome summer together...and they’re not gonna let any insane quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way! Not only is it the second title launching in our new BOOM! Box imprint, but Lumberjanes is one of those punk rock, love-everything-about-it stories that appeals to fans of basically all excellent things.

Lumberjanes #1 second print ships with a new cover by Chrystin Garland and carries a retail price of $3.99 with a Diamond Code of APR148175. It is anticipated to be in stores on June 11th. Full press release below.

Robert Kirkman Consistent on Invincible

If there's one thing comics does, it's shuffle creative teams and characters on books. Marvel and DC are probably the best known for this, with their decisions guided by the notion that readers will respond and talk. And while it's true that fans do talk, there's something to be said about checking out a book and knowing what to expect. Invincible #111 by Robert Kirkman and Ryan Ottley will feature the departure of a major character and new challenges for Mark Grayson. The expectation of those events has led the first issue to be sold out and sent to a one-time second printing.

“For anyone who has read comics as long as I have, you know there’s not a lot of real change in the average superhero comic,” said Eric Stephenson, Publisher at Image Comics. “Characters are killed off as huge publicity stunts, only to return issues later; supposedly major changes are swept under the carpet from one event to the next, and worse, since there’s never any stability in terms of creative teams, directions often change abruptly and leave readers with a myriad of unanswered questions. The vast majority of superhero comics are only concerned with creating the illusion of change, but over the course of its 11-year run, Invincible has given readers change they can believe in, again and again. Characters change and grow; they die—and Invincible #111 is one of the best examples yet of how uncompromising Robert Kirkman can be when it comes to shaking things up. This is superhero action you can’t get anywhere else.”

First launched in 2003, Invincible is the longest-running and most successful modern superhero comic in publication, consistently delivering real thrills that simply can't be matched by other titles. Invincible #111 is the opening shot of a new era and, despite its consistency and creativity, Invincible remains under-ordered within the Direct Market. Invincible #111 provides a perfect opportunity for new readers to discover the series and for current fans to double down on their enthusiasm.

“One of the biggest challenges for us on the publishing level is to figure out not only how to grow sales on long-running titles, but also how to meet demand when something we think is going to do well actually exceeds our expectations,” added Stephenson. “Generally speaking, we rely on the order information we get from our retail partners, and pad our inventory accordingly, but presently, one of our most pressing goals is to figure out how we can do more to help them increase those initial orders with confidence, so that none of us are getting caught by surprise.

“And we get it: Titles as consistently amazing as Invincible are easy to overlook at times, because you get into the habit of just expecting it to be a solid seller, but everyone involved in this series is committed to taking it to the next level. We told you back in January that THE WALKING DEAD’s Robert Kirkman was taking over, and it wasn’t just a joke. Robert was by no means slacking on this book before, but he’s approaching it with the same brutal mindset as THE WALKING DEAD now and he clearly means business.”

Invincible #111 returns to press to meet customer demand and this one-time-only second printing (Diamond Code APR148250) will be available on June 18. Invincible #112 hits shelves the following week, on June 25 and will be available for pre-order with Diamond Code MAR140578. This will be the only printing of this issue. Full press release below.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Review - Star Wars: Darth Maul - Son of Dathomir #1

"It would be wise to kill me."

Darth Maul is a character who wowed audiences in his debut, only to promptly disappoint them in his somewhat hasty exit. Still, many will offer him up as the best part of The Phantom Menace. The fact that audiences didn't get to know him all that well makes his story ripe for telling and Dark Horse is doing just that in Star Wars: Darth Maul - Son of Dathomir #1. The issue is written by Jeremy Barlow, illustrated by Juan Frigeri, inked by Mauro Vargas, colored by Wes Dzioba and lettered by Michael Heisler.

Velvet Returns in Volume

Velvet is a very smart book about the spy game from Image Comics. It's been lauded by many, mostly due to the talents of Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting. If you've been reading it so far, you know why everyone is raving. If you've missed out on the series so far, Image Comics has you covered, as Velvet Volume 1: Before the Living End hits stores this summer as the first volume.

In 1973, Velvet Templeton is the executive assistant to the head of a spy agency. She is meticulous, professional, and ultra-competent. But few people know that she’s also the deadliest woman on Earth. Velvet gave up fieldwork years ago, but now she’s drawn back into the action when one of the agency’s top operatives is killed and the evidence points to her as the killer.

"There's this archetypal secretary who's in a lot of spy movies and novels — the Moneypenny type. It goes through pulp fiction, this Girl Friday idea, and I thought, ‘What if that character was also a Modesty Blaise or Black Widow type? What if that was her secret past?’” said writer Brubaker, who has signed an exclusive deal with Image Comics with artist Sean Phillips, in an interview with USA Today. “It's touching on a lot of the stuff I love about the spy genre that's been in comics, but it's never been in comics that much in America.”

A sexy, subversive action thriller with dark, painterly art by Epting and colors by Elizabeth Breitweiser that is inspired by vintage spy novel cover art, Velvet Volume 1: Before the Living End will be in comic book stores on June 18 and bookstores on July 1 and is specially priced at $9.99. Full press release below.

Battlestar Galactica Goes Steampunk

Dynamite Entertainment is no stranger to steampunk. Their work Legenderry managed to throw Vampirella and the Green Hornet right in the thick of a Victorian world where the fashion was different, but the threats still the same. Now, Dynamite is looking towards the stars for their latest foray into the steampunk world, as Cylons will get their turn in Battlestar Galactica: 1880, written by Tony Lee, illustrated by Aneke and with covers by Ardian Syaf and Sergio Fernandez Davilla.

"There's so much about the steampunk aesthetic -- from the Industrial Age metalworks to the Victorian fashion flair -- that Tony Lee and Aneke can explore in the Battlestar Galactica universe," says Keith Davidsen, Marketing Manager at Dynamite Entertainment. "From the Raptors to Colonial pistols, from the Basestar capital warships to the Cylons themselves, fans will thrill to the sight of spacefaring 1880s technology, and to beloved heroes like Starbuck, Apollo, and Athena reimagined in retro-futuristic ways."

Welcome to the world of Battlestar Galactica, as never seen before, in Steampunk Battlestar Galactica: 1880, where #1 NYT Bestselling Author Tony Lee gives it a Steampunk spin! After Professor Baltar's clockwork Cylonics destroy the Colonial Empire, Arch Duke Adama learns that his son Apollo is missing! It's up to Lady Athena to travel to the Sky Pirate world of the Rising Star and ask for help from the only hope she has - the disgraced Captain Starbuck and his humanoid / Daggit copilot Muffit...

Steampunk Battlestar Galactica: 1880 #1 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors' June Previews catalog and slated for release in August 2014. Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Steampunk Battlestar Galactica: 1880 #1 with their local comic book retailers. Steampunk Battlestar Galactica: 1880 #1 will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, iVerse and Dark Horse Digital.

Full press release below.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Review - Pathfinder: City of Secrets #1

"We're staying for a while, Meri. Let's get settled in first."

We're long past the days of docking at a massive city full with all manner of rogue, thieves and various other less than righteous individuals. Settings like that are pretty fantastic and offer a path into imagination and fantasy. Dynamite Entertainment is a publisher who's a big fan of fantasy and are publishing Pathfinder: City of Secrets #1 in that category. The issue is written by Jim Zub, illustrated by Leandro Oliveira, colored by Ross Campbell and lettered by Marshall Dillon.

Dynamite Relaunching Original John Carter: Warlord of Mars

Dynamite Entertainment has been paving the way for readers to get their hands on all the John Carter and Princess of Mars stories they could get their hands on. The thing is though, due to comic book rights held by Walt Disney (and Marvel) and a few other legal entanglements, the publisher couldn't really mention key characters and plot elements from the John Carter mythos. Now though, Edgar Rice Burroughts, Inc., has reacquired those comic book rights and have entered a partnership with Dynamite Entertainment to bring the character back to the pages of comic books, strips and graphic novels. The agreement allows for the world-wide publication of the John Carter universe as well as "Lord of the Jungle" and ERB's library of archival material.

"It was important to us that we reacquire the comic book and comic strip rights from Marvel Entertainment so we could reintroduce them in the market place. We're excited to see the exploits of Edgar Rice Burroughs' first science fiction adventure hero brought to life in their fullness by the passionate creative talents assembled by the folks at Dynamite," said James Sullos, President of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc. "They're true fans - and it shows on every page and in every idea they've shared with us. Now fans everywhere will be able to appreciate the original adventure stories that later spawned Flash Gordon, Superman, Star Wars and Avatar."

John Carter debuted in 1912 as the lead character in Edgar Rice Burroughs' first novel, serialized as "Under the Moons of Mars" in the pulp magazine, The All-Story and later published as a complete novel retitled A Princess of Mars. The character excited the imagination of readers and quickly imprinted onto the public psyche. As many literary and popular culture scholars attest, John Carter served as the template for a litany of adventure heroes to follow, from Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers and Superman to the Jedi knights of Star Wars fame and most recently, Avatar.

"Working together with Jim and the team at ERB, we will be taking the worlds of John Carter and The Lord of the Jungle publishing initiatives to a new level. There's a rich history, and an incredible amount of archival material in the ERB library, and we're looking forward to bringing it to the fans around the world. This is the beginning of a great relationship." states Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite Entertainment. "I can't express how happy and excited everyone at Dynamite is to be working hand in hand with everyone at ERB, Inc."

In planning for a late 2014 relaunch, Dynamite Entertainment confirmed that the new comic book series will be titled John Carter: Warlord of Mars. Dynamite will also republish other John Carter assets, going back as far as the early 1940s comic strips by John Coleman Burroughs, the son of Edgar Rice Burroughs. In a related development, new John Carter: Warlord of Mars "adventure strip" episodes will make their online debut in early summer as part of the Edgar Rice Burroughs Digital Comic Strip Service at Written by Roy Thomas and illustrated by Pegaso (Rodolfo Perez Garcia) of Mexico City, this series will invite readers to accompany John Carter and his compatriots on exciting adventures that delve into the rich, storied history of Barsoom (as the inhabitants of Mars refer to their planet). As with the other nine series featured on the site, including Tarzan and Carson of Venus, the first four episodes of John Carter: Warlord of Mars will be viewable at no charge.

Full press release below.

Howtoons Teaches Kids Through Comics

Don't let it ever be said (again) that comic books will the minds of youth. We've come a long way from the fear tactics of Dr. Frederic Werthram and Image Comics is going another step by offering a book that teaches kids valuable lessons. Created by Fred Van Lente, Tom Fowler and Jordie Bellaire, Howtoons: (Re)Ignition #1 is the latest in the series co-created by Nick Dragotta.

“I was thrilled and honored Nick and Ingrid [Dragotta] asked me to be part of the Howtoons team,” said Van Lente. “We've come up with a story that should excite and delight both kids and parents and teach them about every known kind of energy through super fun projects. And that Fowler and Bellaire art will make this a post-apocalyptic adventure for the ages (and all ages)!"

Tuck and Celine’s parents put their family in suspended animation to ride out the ecological apocalypse—but when the kids wake up to find Mom & Dad are gone, they have to make their way across an exciting and sometimes scary new world to find the ‘rents… depending on only their Howtoons projects to survive.

Howtoons: (Re)Ignition #1 arrives in stores on August 6 and will be available for $2.99. It can be pre-ordered with Diamond Code JUN140484. Full press release below.

BOOM! Studios Enters The Amazing World of Gumball

The Amazing World of Gumball #1 Cover A

Gumballs are best for eating and chewing. When they're not being purchased for quarters through a machine, they're joining a bunch of other characters on all manner of misadventure. And they find a home on Cartoon Network Enterprises as The Amazing World of Gumball. Now, BOOM! Studios is bringing that world to comics in a new ongoing series by Frank Gibson and Tyson Hesse.

“GUMBALL pushes the boundaries of animation and features such a rich world for Frank and Tyson to explore and bring to the comic page,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “In the tradition of our ADVENTURE TIME and REGULAR SHOW comics, it’s important to us to capture the heart of what Cartoon Network has so brilliantly developed while still being additive and complementary to the overall narrative.”

Created by Ben Bocquelet and produced by Cartoon Network Development Studio Europe, The Amazing World of Gumball has received high critical praise since its debut in 2011, having won several British Academy Children’s Awards and earning nominations in the Annie Awards. New episodes from the series’ third season will debut on Cartoon Network starting June 5 at 6:30pm ET/PT. The Amazing World of Gumball #1 arrives in comic shops on June 18th with a cover price of $3.99 under Diamond order code APR141000. The main covers are illustrated by Missy Pena and Zachary Sterling, with retailer incentive covers from Paulina Ganucheau, Troy Little and Sonnye Lim.

Full press release below.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Lumberjanes Earns Ongoing Series Badge

Lumberjanes #3 Cover A

Lumberjanes is what a publisher would called a bonafide hit. And what happens with hits is they get reprints or they get ongoing. In this case, it's the latter, as BOOM! Studios has announced that the series will now be ongoing. That bodes well for writer Noelle Stevenson and Grace Ellis and artist Brooke Allen. The series is a fun mix of Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Gravity Falls, featuring five rad, butt-kicking teenage girls who go to summer camp, fight monsters, and discover a mystery that puts the whole world at stake, all while championing the power of “friendship to the max!”

“Seeing the reaction to this series is exactly why we do what we do here at BOOM!,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “There’s been an outpouring of love and support for LUMBERJANES, and much of that has come from fans who are picking up a comic for the first time in a while, if not for the first time ever. Noelle, Grace, Brooke, and Shannon have built an incredible comic book series that anybody can enjoy. ‘Friendship to the max’ sums it up perfectly.”

Jo, April, Mal, Molly and Ripley are five best pals determined to have an awesome summer together...and they’re not gonna let any insane quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way! Not only is it the second title launching in our new BOOM! Box imprint, but Lumberjanes is one of those punk rock, love-everything-about-it stories that appeals to fans of basically all excellent things. The first two issues of Lumberjanes are already out in the wild. Lumberjanes #3 arrives in comic shops on June 11th with a cover price of $3.99 under Diamond order code APR140998. The main cover is illustrated by Stevenson, with an incentive cover available in a limited quantity by Faith Erin Hicks.

Full press release below.

Review - MPH #1

"Mr. Springfield, the world's first and only superhuman, had lost control and was trying to dig his heels in to stop."

Designer drugs offer up a new take on a centuries old addiction. Typically, drug addicts resort to drugs primarily for the altered state of mind they offer. It's not often that a drug is taken to give someone superhuman capabilities, but that's just the case in MPH #1 from Image Comics. The issue is written by Mark Millar and illustrated Duncan Fegredo.

Displaced Persons Inspired by San Francisco

When San Francisco isn't being leveled by kaiju fighting, it can be a pretty lovely city by the bay. It's also the inspiration for a whole host of stories, including a new one from Image Comics called Displaced Persons. The graphic novel will be written by Derek McCulloch and illustrated by Anthony Peruzzo, offering a riveting tale of murder, love, crime, friendship, betrayal, and just the slightest bit of time travel.

“You can look at a family tree the same way, and when you see that someone was born, say, in Poland in 1920, and their child was born in Baltimore in 1947, there's a story between those two rings. Displaced Persons takes those rings, and takes all the different kinds of stories I love, and mixes them up and twists them into a shape you won't really understand until the last page. It's a book I hope people will read twice... I guarantee you'll see things the second time you didn't know were there the first time."

San Francisco, the twentieth century: In 1939, a private detective searches for a missing heiress. In 1969, twin brothers approach a drug heist from opposite sides of the law. And in 1999, a woman slowly comes to realize the terrible danger she faces in her own home. McCulloch was inspired to write Displaced Persons because of a love of puzzle stories, detective stories, time travel stories, and a fascination with how history imprints itself on the smaller story of a family's history.

“It's like reading rings in a tree... you can see the growth of the tree, ring by ring, and the distance between the rings tells you when the droughts hit, or the long winters, or the hurricanes,” explained McCulloch.

Displaced Persons is in an original graphic novel format and arrives in stores on August 6 for $17.99. It's available to pre-order with Diamond Code JUN140499. Full press release below.

Dynamite Pushes Jennifer Blood: Born Again

Steven Grant's time on The Punisher made him famous. His time working on Two Guns brought together Mark Wahlberg and Denzel Washington. Now, his time working with Dynamite Entertainment will bring to readers Jennifer Blood: Born Again. Not only that, but he'll be joined by artists Kewber Baal and covers by Stephen Segovia.

"I don't play with other people's toys much anymore, but Jennifer Blood was too juicy a prospect to pass up," said Grant. "As one of Garth's greatest creations, she was pure psychopulp, that's what I love about her, and the psychopulp is what we're going for as we bring her back from the precipice after she has lost everything, and give her a new focus, a new home and a new direction. She used to be crazy, with a thick veneer of sane hiding it. Now she's chillingly sane, but it's crazy-sane. She has been a lot of fun."

In Jennifer Blood: Born Again #1, the streets of Lalaland run red when Jennifer Blood returns to declare a new war on the mobs. Or does she? As a low level hood plots to leverage her in a bid to take over the Los Angeles underworld, her war attracts some very dangerous attention and unexpectedly sets a lethal international chain of events in motion. A deadly new direction from Grant.

"I've known Steven for 20 years, and since Dynamite began publishing 10 years ago I've wanted to work with Steve," states Dynamite CEO/Publisher Nick Barrucci. "His incredible body of work ranges from The Hulk to the Avengers, and was the first writer to turn the Punisher in to one of Marvel's leading characters, and of course now 2 Guns. It's rewarding that a writer of Steven's caliber is finally working with us, and on an extremely important character to Dynamite - Jennifer Blood."

Jennifer Blood: Born Again #1 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors' June Previews catalog, the premiere source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market, and slated for release in August 2014. Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Jennifer Blood: Born Again #1 with their local comic book retailers. Jennifer Blood: Born Again #1 will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, iVerse and Dark Horse Digital.

Full press release below.

Monday, May 19, 2014

BOOM! Studios Announces New Line of Deluxe Edition Trade Paperbacks

The Savage Brothers Deluxe Edition TP Cover

Kicking off a new line of deluxe edition trade paperbacks means the publisher has to offer up a book that's pretty awesome. BOOM! Studios has just the book for such an initiative, offering up The Savage Brothers as a full-sized, deluxe edition book that helps celebrates the publisher's tenth anniversary in 2015. It's the first of many deluxe editions that represent the perfect point for existing fans looking to enjoy the book in the new format. Written by Andrew Cosby and illustrated by Johanna Stokes, The Savage Brothers Deluxe Edition TPB is presented in standard comic size for the first time (the first edition was printed in 6” x 9” digest size) and features a brand-new cover by interior artist Rafael Albuquerque.

“Reprinting some of our classic BOOM! titles and giving them the deluxe edition treatment is something we’ve been itching to do,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “Starting off with SAVAGE BROTHERS is a perfect entry point; this is the series that Rafael cut his teeth on before he went on to become the star he is today. And we had to have him come back to do a new cover!”

When the living want their undead loved ones put out of their misery, the Savage Brothers are the only two guys for the job. But their latest job takes them on a strange trip, involving virgin strippers, heads in jars, and the secret of the zombie apocalypse. This special edition also contains two terrifying reprints of Zombie Tales stories from Stokes, J.K. Woodward and Keith Giffen. Other upcoming Deluxe Editions from BOOM! Studios include Tag by Giffen, Kody Chamberlain and Chee; and Talent by Christopher Golden and Paul Azaceta. Previous series recollected in the Deluxe Edition format include 2 Guns by Steven Grant and Mateus Santolouco and Dingo by Michael Alan Nelson and Francesco Biagini.

The Savage Brothers Deluxe Edition TPB arrives in comic shops on June 11th with a cover price of $9.99 under Diamond order code MAR140961 and ISBN number 978-1-60886-387-7, featuring a new cover by series artist Albuquerque. Full press release below.

Review - Axe Cop: The American Choppers #1

"I just like fighting. Everything else is too boring."

Sometimes, a cop needs something besides and axe to get the job done. That would make an axe cop potentially even more effective at saving the day and protecting innocents. Why not throw in some other axe-wielding companions for good measure? Dark Horse agrees and offers up Axe Cop: American Choppers #1. The issue is written by Malachai Nicolle, illustrated by Ethan Nicolle and colored by Dirk Erik Schulz.

Captain Victory Ride Again

If you bring together Joe Casey, Nathan Fox and the team of Haunt, then chances are good things will happen. If they're brought together to take on a reimagining of one of Jack Kirby's most incredible creations, then even better things will happen. Dynamite Entertainment is bringing together the aforementioned creators for Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers #1, launching in 2014. It will also feature interior art by Jim Rugg and Ulises Farinas.

"As a fan, this was the first Kirby creation I was in on the ground floor of... so to be writing this series is a big deal and a huge honor," says Casey. "And we've got some of the best artists in the business -- a lot of my favorite artists, in fact -- to turn this thing into a jam of cosmic proportions. And just like Kirby always did, we're going to be pushing the envelope in all sorts of cool ways."

In Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers #1, Captain Victory is launched into an epic adventure that spans both space and time. All your favorites are here -- as well as all-new enemies to face. Your new favorite cosmic comic book has finally arrived.

"I am very pleased to announce that one of my father's iconic characters will once again be part of the world of Dynamite Entertainment," adds the Trustee of the Kirby Family Estate, Lisa Kirby. "Nick Barrucci has brought together a very talented team of people, which include writer Joe Casey and artist Nathan Fox. Through them Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers will be introduced to a whole new generation, and for those already familiar with The Captain and his team, I am sure you'll be entertained as well!"

"We've wanted to relaunch the universe of characters by the late, great Jack Kirby, but wanted to wait for the right creative team to help us reintroduce the characters to comic fans," states Dynamite CEO/Publisher Nick Barrucci. "Joe Casey is a huge fan, and is bringing his own voice to these fantastic characters. We spoke about the direction he thought would engage fans, and Nathan Fox's participation just sealed the deal. This series has been in the works for over a year as both Joe and Nathan had to fit it in to their schedules, and we did not wish to rush the series. I have to say, I couldn't be happier. Fans are going to be ecstatic with Joe and Nathan's story and art for the series."

Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers #1 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors' June Previews catalog, the premiere source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market and slated for release in August 2014. Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers #1 with their local comic book retailers. Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers #1 will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, iVerse and Dark Horse Digital.

Full press release below.

Imperial Image

Sure, the film industry is replete with romantic comedies. There's something of a shortage of bromantic comedies though, which is even truer in the world of comics. Image is filling that void a tad with a new comic called Imperial by Steven T. Seagle and Mark Dos Santos. Seagle teases, “It’s a buddy book with serious commitment issues.”

Mark is a couple of weeks out from the biggest day of his life—his wedding day—but then fate steps in and pulls the rug out from under him. He is faced with an impossible choice: Marry the woman who loves, understands, and puts up with his (many) human failings? Or, leave her at the altar in order to take up the helm of the world's one and only superhero, Imperial? Up until now, there was nothing in Mark's life to suggest that he was the least bit remarkable, so why would the retiring Imperial choose him to be the protector of all mankind? Why now? And how will learning to shoot laser beams from his eyes impact Mark’s rehearsal dinner schedule? If the choice is superhero cred vs. true love—does Mark disappoint the world… or the woman of his dreams?

Imperial #1 arrives in stores on August 6 and is available to pre-order with Diamond Code JUN140469. Full press release below.

Friday, May 16, 2014

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 it was a post of news and tips to help survivors make it one more day alive, but now it has became a story of my fight to survive and to keep on living.)

Year 5. Week 38.

Zombies. They chase us, hunt us, catch us and eat us.

For too long now we've run in fear of them; cowering in little holes, hoping for sleep and that they don’t find us there. Those five long years were dark times for all who weren’t killed in the initial confusion. After so many years it looked like there would be no light at the end of the tunnel for the survivors still fighting. Finally, we're taking it all back starting today.

Our plan of action has been put into place and we're now getting into gear. Work around here has gotten fast to the point that it's near completion and we can take folks away to start hunting down zombies. We're getting all our gear prepped here and linking up with the government forces in Oregon, as that will be the first state we plan on clearing as best we can so survivors can move around safely.

Review - Bee and PuppyCat #1

"PuppyCat, it's a brand new day! Endless opportunity!"

We need partners in our adventures. Even if that happens to be a strange creature who goes by the name PuppyCat, as is the case in Bee and PuppyCat #1 from BOOM! Studios. The issue is written by Natasha Allegri and Garrett Jackson and illustrated by Allegri.

Image Finds a Genius

There are some questions that creators like Marc Bernardin and Adam Freeman ponder. For instance, what if the next great military mind was a teenaged girl from South Central? This August, Image Comics attempts to answer that question with Genius, a book that will ship in five parts weekly.

"We're thrilled to be part of Image's roster of the new and different,” said Bernardin. “This story—about an urban revolutionary's war on systemic injustice—is one Adam and I have been wanting to tell for a very long time."

What if the greatest military mind of our generation was born to a people who are already supremely conditioned to wage war, who know nothing but violence since birth, and must continually adapt to new predators in order to survive? What if the second coming of Alexander the Great, of Genghis Khan, of Napoleon, of Patton...what if it was a teenaged girl from South Central, L.A. named Destiny? And what if she decides to secede three blocks of the ‘hood from the Union? Who is going to take it back from her and her army of gangbangers? Who CAN?

All five issues of Genius will be available weekly, throughout August. Genius #1 arrives in stores on 8/6 for $3.99. It's available to pre-order with Diamond Code JUN140478. Issue #2 will be available on 8/13 with Diamond Code JUN140479, #3 will be available on 8/20 with Diamond Code JUN140480, #4 will be available on 8/27 with Diamond Code JUN140481 and #5 will be available on 8/27 with Diamond Code JUN140482. Full press release below.

Blame It on The Empty Man

The Empty Man #1 Cover A

BOOM! Studios are really big fans of Clive Barker, one of the foremost creators when it comes to terror. That doesn't mean they can't dabble in some other horror creators and the publisher plans to offer a story that is just realistic enough to wonder if it can really happen. In June, the publisher will debut The Empty Man, a dystopic version of the world we know, where a terrifying disease has taken on almost deific connotations and has inspired a wave of murder cults. People are killing each other and themselves, and the same words keep popping up: “The Empty Man made me do it.” And the book offers up the talents of Cullen Bunn and Vanesa R. Del Rey.

“My favorite horror stories are of the grounded variety, balancing terror with real-world human concerns,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “The disease and investigation that are at the heart of THE EMPTY MAN completely hit that mark. Combining a bit of J-horror and a bit of the police procedural, Cullen Bunn and Vanesa R. Del Rey—both visionaries in their own right—have crafted a gripping story that explores some of our darkest fears.”

It’s been one year since the first reported case of the Empty Man disease, and no drug has been able to slow its progress. The cause is unknown, and the symptoms include fits of rage, hideous hallucinations, suicidal dementia, followed by death, or a near lifeless, "empty" state of catatonia. As murder cults rise nationwide, the FBI and CDC enter a joint investigation of the Empty Man, hoping to piece together clues to stop the cult and uncover a cure.

The Empty Man #1 arrives in comic shops on June 11th with a cover price of $3.99 under Diamond order code APR140958. The main cover is illustrated by series artist Del Rey, with an incentive cover available in a limited quantity from Goñi Montes. Full press release below.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Review - Dead Ronin #1

"Beyond this gate is my vengeance."

Ronin have historically been one of the most feared warriors throughout history. They demonstrate a cool sensibility amidst the chaos of combat, making them brutally efficient killing machines. If you add in the fact that they're already dead when they're fighting, then chances are you've made a worthy opponent even more ridiculously strong. Lab5 Studios offers a character in Dead Ronin #1, written and illustrated by Luke A. Brown.

Wayward Aspires to Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a property near and dear to the hearts of many. Both the film and the television show were quite amazing and have amassed a cult following. Sadly, both ended and are now continued in the excellent comic book series by Dark Horse. What if there were another series that fit that bill though from Image Comics? Wayward might be what you're looking for, especially when it pairs Jim Zub with Steve Cummings.

"Wayward is a coming-of-age story filled with mystery and emotion. It's also an ass-kicking joy ride with teenagers beating the hell out of Japanese mythological monsters,” said Zub. “Steve and I built this series from the ground up to play to both our strengths. I can't wait for people to see what we have planned.”

Rori Lane is an outsider by nature, but moving to Tokyo to live with her single Mom has only exacerbated her weirdness. She's feeling out of sorts, worried about fitting in and, as if that wasn’t enough, strange things are beginning to happen. Glowing symbols and patterns are starting to appear before her eyes… and she's the only one who seems to notice. In Wayward a group of teens living in Tokyo find a common bond in manifesting strange, supernatural abilities. As they begin to unravel the mystery behind their powers and their common source they're drawn into a war with the vestiges of Japan’s monstrous mythic past.

Wayward #1 arrives in stores on 8/27 and will be available for $3.50 with special variant covers by Alina Urusov, Jeff "Chamba" Cruz and Adam Warren. Full press release below.

Archaia Wants You Hooked on Interesting Drug

Interesting Drug

Drugs have this way of grabbing hold of someone and taking control of their life. It's not that everyone who uses them becomes an addict, but it does have that persistent ability to convince the user to go to great lengths to get more. This would presumably be especially true in the case of nostalgia as a drug and writer Shaun Manning and illustrator Anna Wieszczyk plan to go down memory lane in the graphic novel Interesting Drug from Archaia Entertainment.

“We’ve all had this thought at least once in our lives: If you could travel back in time and change your past, would you do it?” questioned BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “In INTERESTING DRUG, Shaun and Anna prove just how dangerous that line of thought can be.”

When a man from the future recruits average retail worker Andrew Smith to help him create a drug that will allow him to travel through time, Andrew thinks he’s found the way to erase all his problems. However, the power of nostalgia proves to be the strongest of drugs, creating an epidemic of addiction with Andrew as its unwitting kingpin.

The Interesting Drug hardcover original graphic novel arrives from Archaia in comic shops on May 28th with a cover price of $24.99, under Diamond order code MAR140979. Full press release below.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

Well, DC seems to be taking a stab at dominating primetime television the way Marvel has dominated the box office. I’ve already touched on the good things that are happening on Arrow and possibly Gotham in the future. I’ll tell you the show I hope manages to stick around for more than a season: Constantine.

You heard me right--there’s a John ‘Hellblazer’ Constantine show in the works.

It’s kind of funny to me that the Keanu Reeves film based on the character seems a bit panned in hindsight by Constantine fans. I actually thought it was a pretty solid, fun film that really got what Constantine was about. So I hope that any show with this character sort of captures what I thought was cool about the film.

Review - Jack Kraken One-Shot

"If I had my way, I wouldn't be flipping out in a dark, abandoned prison. I'd be at home, in my boxers, sippin' tea. The 'sleepytime' kind. Yeah."

If the day ever comes when agencies like the FBI, CIA and NSA can't handle an enemy thrown their way, hopefully another agency will step up and fill the void. The thing is, that new opponent might be of the supernatural/monster/undead variety, which may require a different type of group. And a different type of hero, like Jack Kraken in Jack Kraken One-Shot from Dark Horse Comics. The issue is written by Tim Seeley, illustrated by Seeley, Ross Campbell and Jim Terry, colored by Carlos Badilla and lettered by Crank!.

The Woods #1 Moves Toward Second Printing

The Woods #1 2nd Print Cover

There are lots of good reasons to venture into the woods. Camping in cabins, marshmallows over the camp fire, strange creatures abducting high school students into an alternate dimension. Wait, you didn't sign on for the last one? Well, some of you did, seeing as how The Woods #1 from BOOM! Studios by James Tynion IV and Michael Dialynas is such a hit that it's sold out at the distributor level. And you know what that means: second printing.

“We knew we had something special on our hands when James first pitched us THE WOODS, but all of the praise we’ve received so far for the first issue has just been astonishing,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-In-Chief Matt Gagnon. “Whether it’s longtime comic fans, industry professionals, or brand-new readers, we’ve loved seeing this series reach a wide and diverse readership. That in and of itself is one of our missions as a company: reaching people from all walks of life and disparate interests and having them united by a powerful story. We need more new stories in comics that expand our audience. THE WOODS has that potential and we’re very proud of it.”

In The Woods #1, on October 16, 2013, 437 students, 52 teachers, and 24 additional staff from Bay Point Preparatory High School in suburban Milwaukee, WI vanished without a trace. Countless light years away, far outside the bounds of the charted universe, 513 people find themselves in the middle of an ancient, primordial wilderness. Where are they? Why are they there? The answers will prove stranger than anyone could possibly imagine.

The Woods #1 second print ships with a new cover by Dialynas under Diamond Order Code APR148002 and carries a retail price of $3.99. It's anticipated to be on sale June 4th, the same day issue #2 is set to debut. Full press release below.

San Francisco 1939

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal: The Novelization Debuts

The Dark Crystal: The Novelization

The Dark Crystal is a movie that's got some historic importance. In fact, it's a cherished classic that was way ahead of its time and showcased the massively talented Jim Henson and his workshop. While the movie came out decades ago, Archaia is dusting it off and offering the story as the second in a planned series of hardcovers that will reprint the prose novel adaptations of Henson works. Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal: The Novelization follows the April release of Jim Henson's Labyrinth: The Novelization and will be followed in August by Jim Henson's Storyteller: The Noverlization.

“There’s an entire generation of Jim Henson fans who never had the opportunity to enrich their enjoyment of classics like Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal with the prose novel adaptations,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “We’re honored to be working with The Jim Henson Company and The Jim Henson Archives to give these reprints the Archaia treatment and present them in beautiful new editions.”

Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal: The Novelization, written by author and playwright A.C.H. Smith and overseen by Jim Henson, reprints the long-out-of-print prose novel of the classic 1982 fantasy film for the first time in hardcover and features illustrations and concept designs by legendary illustrator and concept artist Brian Froud that have never before been published. The book also contains an exclusive peek into Jim Henson’s creative process with a transcription of over 20 never-before-seen pages of his detailed notes on an early draft of the adaptation.

Jim Henson's The Dark Crystal: The Novelization goes on sale in comic shops and specialty stores on June 4th under Diamond Order Code APR140989, and wherever books are sold on June 10th (ISBN 978-1-60886-418-8). The 6” x 8”, 224-page hardcover prose novelization will retail for $19.99. Full press release below.

Review - Grimm Fairy Tales 2014 Annual

"The target is spotted. We are a go."

When universes collide and evil forces start approaching, there's going to need to be resistance. In most cases, that resistance is comprised of individuals with special abilities and a penchant for putting their lives on the line. In the world of Zenescope, those characters are ones many people already know about and they're teaming up in Grimm Fairy Tales 2014 Annual. The issue is written by Ralph Tedesco, illustrated by Andrea Meloni, colored by Valentina Cuomo and lettered Jim Campbell.

Janey Travels Further as Zombie Tramp

Zombie Tramp is a book that brings together zombies and women scorned. When it's a female zombie who's the one scorned, expect lots of revenge and angry shambling all over the place. In July, volume three of the horror series boasts a new creative team and direction, bringing a slew of variant covers including two by Jerry Gaylord and Josh Howard. And Dan Mendoza returns with Jason Martin and artist TMChu.

Once one of Hollywood's most beautiful call girls, Janey was bitten, killed and then resurrected as a Zombie. Picking up from this years Free Comic book Day Preview, she's made her way to the Miracle in the Desert to start over. But what secrets are buried beneath the City of Entertainment. Danger abounds, nothing is what is seems and whatever happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas..forever.

The series relaunch will also sport variant covers by Howard, Gaylord and two covers by TMChu. To celebrate the new series Action Lab has created a retailer incentive cover drawn by Jamal Igle featuring their store's logo. Full press release below.