Comic Book News & Previews

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Re: CHEW

Postby TheButcher on Mon May 02, 2011 11:35 pm

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Re: A Little Bit of FUNK

Postby TheButcher on Sun May 08, 2011 10:58 pm

From CA:
'Infinite Kung Fu' Combines
The summer of Top Shelf continues with Infinite Kung Fu, a massive 464-page zombie martial arts epic by writer-artist Kagan McLeod. Employing the genre tropes of both kung fu, horror and Western films, Infinite Kung Fu pushes the concepts to the extreme by dropping its hero Lei Kung into a world besieged by zombies and under the threat of a brutal emperor and his five kung-fu armies. To save the planet, Lei Kung must master countless forms of combat -- and survive.

You can check out the first 15 pages of Infinite Kung Fu right here at ComicsAlliance.


Toronto-based commercial illustrator Kagan McLeod has created comics for publications including The National Post, New York Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, Newsweek, Golf Digest, Feathertale Review, and contributed a JFK story for a graphic novel called Our Murdered Presidents. Obviously a huge fan of genre cinema, Infinite Kung Fu is his full-length graphic novel.

If you like the 20 pages you read below, Top Shelf's website is offering the first 250 pages of Infinite Kung Fu for free. You can't ask for a better preview than that.

Infinite Kung Fu can be pre-ordered now on Top Shelf's website or from Things From Another World.

Read More: http://www.comicsalliance.com/2011/05/0 ... z1LovDkyzY
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Sun May 08, 2011 11:01 pm

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Re: Godzilla: Gangsters and Goliaths

Postby TheButcher on Sun May 08, 2011 11:02 pm

From CBR:
Layman Talks "Godzilla: Gangsters and Goliaths"
Shaun Manning wrote:Because one monster rampage is never enough, IDW Publishing is set to follow up its ongoing series "Godzilla: Kingdom of Monsters" with the five-issue miniseries "Gangsters and Goliaths." From the minds of Eisner Award-winning writer John Layman and Eisner-nominated artist Alberto Ponticelli, the mini blends elements of Asian cinema, mafia action and of course Toho monsters, as it finds one Detective Makoto Sato fighting alone to bring down the Tokyo underworld while struggling to survive the behemoths of Monster Island.

With the first issue set to crash into comic shops in June, CBR News caught up with Layman, best known as the writer and co-creator with Rob Guillory of "Chew," about "Godzilla: Gangsters and Goliaths" and whatever else he might have up his sleeve.
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Sun May 08, 2011 11:02 pm

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Sun May 08, 2011 11:04 pm

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Sun May 08, 2011 11:07 pm

From CBR:
Immonen on "Centifolia"
ROBOT 6's Tim O'Shea talks to "Fear Itself" artist Stuart Immonen about the second edition of his "Centifolia" sketchbook, which debuted this weekend at the Toronto Comic Arts festival.
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Re: A Little Bit of FUNK

Postby TheButcher on Tue May 17, 2011 12:12 am

From Newsarama:
INFINITE KUNG FU Collects Fan-Favorite Zombie Mash-Up
Can’t get enough kung fu action? This July, Top Shelf won’t just bring you kung fu...it’ll bring you Infinite Kung Fu. The fan-favorite indy series by writer-artist Kagan McLeod is collected and completed in a 464-page volume where the honorable Lei Kung must wander a post-apocalyptic Earth battling the ruthless forces of zombies, with friends and foes blurring as the action escalates.

To repeat: 464 pages of battling post-apocalyptic zombies with kung fu. We’re just going to let that sink in.

If you want to get a taste of this hot kung fu action, there’s some previews on Top Shelf’s website – and we talked to McLeod himself, whose work you’ve probably seen in Sports Illustrated, Entertainment Weekly and countless other “mainstream” magazines. But for this creator, nothing beats beating zombies with kung fu. Get a taste of the infinite kung fu action awaiting you in our interview below.
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Tue May 17, 2011 12:13 am

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Wed May 18, 2011 12:19 am

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Fri May 20, 2011 11:54 pm

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Re: A Clockwork Orange

Postby TheButcher on Tue May 24, 2011 6:57 am

From Bleeding Cool:
A Clockwork Orange: The Comic Book
Kevin Colden has a strip in the Strange Adventures anthology book out from Vertigo on Wednesday.

But enough of that, here are some pages from a pitch he once made for a comic book adaptation of the Anthony Burgess novel, A Clockwork Orange.


http://kcolden.blogspot.com/2011/05/clo ... range.html
Every once in a while, like most comic creators, I'm asked the question "If you could do your dream project, what would it be?" For me, the answer is easy: for many years now, I've wanted to adapt Anthony Burgess' classic novel A Clockwork Orange into comics form.
I'm not entirely sure why; I'm also a big fan of Stanley Kubrick's work, and no one could successfully argue that his iconic film adaptation is in need of improvement. Maybe I just like a good challenge. In any case, during the summer of 2009, I found myself dealing with a major family crisis and in need of something to keep my mind occupied during long interstate train rides and otherwise insanity-inducing idle time at my destination, and the one thing I found that could occupy mind enough was this long-dormant idea.
So I grabbed a fresh copy of the book, pulled out my trusty legal pads, and before long, I had pushed, pulled and trimmed the story into a complete 150-page comic script. Later on that year (crisis passed, thankfully) I took some time to work up a few pages as a proof-of-concept proposal.

Over the last two years, a number of friends and colleagues have seen these, but for a variety of reasons I've kept them from public view. But it seems like now is the time to set them loose.
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The Mighty Thor

Postby TheButcher on Thu May 26, 2011 7:02 am

CBR ADVANCE PREVIEW: "The Mighty Thor" #3

Marvel has released an advance look at "The Mighty Thor" #3 by Matt Fraction and Olivier Coipel. Galactus and the Silver Surfer clash with the Odinson on June 22.
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Re: MARVELMAN

Postby TheButcher on Sat May 28, 2011 6:16 pm

Op/Ed: Whatever Happened to the MARVELMAN of Tomorrow?
Graeme McMillan wrote:It's been almost two years since Marvel Comics announced that they'd bought the rights to Marvelman, apparently ending one of the more confusing rights battles in comics history, and since then, we've seen one apparently-canceled ongoing reprint series, two expensive hardcover black and white collections of 1950s stories and... nothing else. What happened?

At the time, the announcement was treated by Marvel as a major coup, with a press release calling it "the biggest news of Comic-Con International" and claiming "jaws are still on the floor." But even then, it was unclear of what, exactly, Marvel had actually purchased; under British copyright law, the rights to the stories that made the character as important to comics history as he is are still part-owned by the creators, and even in the aftermath of the announcement, Marvel Publisher Dan Buckley described the situation of "talking to all the people involved in the '80s/'90s material," as if the matter was far from resolved.

To be fair, unresolved is not a new state of affairs when it comes to the character, who has been the subject of various rights issues since even before Eclipse went bankrupt midway through Neil Gaiman and Mark Buckingham's run; after the fact, it was discovered that the famous Alan Moore run that made both the character and creator's reputations was based on an erroneous belief that the character existed in the public domain - and that's completely ignoring the fact that Marvelman was a hastily-created, barely-revised rip-off of the original Captain Marvel in the first place. Marvel's purchase of the character from creator Mick Anglo appears to only give them rights to Anglo's original stories - the ones reprinted in Marvelman Classic and Marvelman Family's Finest in 2010 - and, presumably, any new stories they want to create with the character. Neither of these, in my opinion (of course) are what people want to read the most; they want the Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman runs, and the absence of both of those remains keenly felt.

The value of Marvelman isn't the character at all; the character is little more than a blonde, British Captain Marvel, a character who has continually failed to find success from DC for decades, now, and also one who has is already available in various other analogs from other publishers (Hello, Prime - published by Malibu, since purchased by Marvel). The value is entirely in the historical importance of the 1980s run by Alan Moore - his first superhero revisionary work - and, to a lesser extent, the aborted Neil Gaiman run that followed in the early 1990s. If you needed proof, you can see it in the low, low sales figures for the reprint books that Marvel put out last year - so where are the Moore and Gaiman reprints?

The problem is rumored to be that, while Moore and Gaiman have agreed to allow Marvel to reprint (and, in the case of the latter half of Moore's run and the entirety of Gaiman's, correct the lettering to replace "Miracleman" - the name the character and strip took on after the threat of legal action from Marvel way back when - with "Marvelman") their runs - with Moore offering to give his royalties money to Mick Anglo - the same isn't true of all of the artists involved, who also share rights to the work. If true, this just seems crazy to me: It has to be a dispute over money, which either means that the artist(s) in question are asking a ridiculous amount, or Marvel is lowballing them in the hopes of... what, waiting them out, perhaps? Hoping they'll eventually get bored or desperate and say yes?

The idea of Marvel publishing the Marvelman stories that people want to read should, on the face of it, be irresistible to the publisher. Right now, they don't have anything in their library that truly stands up to DC's one-two punch of Watchmen and The Dark Knight Returns, and this would fix that hole in their back catalog and create a brand new piece of prestigious legacy for them. That they've owned the character for two years and haven't, somehow, addressed all the rights issues to make this happen could be due to one of many scenarios. Was it an underestimation of what the process would be? Was it lack of faith in the value of what's within reach? Or perhaps, is it truly outrageous creator demands that they can't justify agreeing to? Or maybe it's something else entirely. As a reader, it's frustrating, but I can't help but feel as if it has to be so much more frustrating to everyone involved with the character, to see things come so close to finally being resolved and then... nothing.

Still. Maybe there'll be an exciting announcement about this at Comic-Con International: San Diego a couple of months from now, huh?

Marvel was contacted, but declined to comment about any existing plans for the character.
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:07 pm

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Re: MARVELMAN

Postby TheButcher on Sat Jun 04, 2011 11:51 pm

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Re: The Next Big Thing

Postby TheButcher on Sat Jun 11, 2011 3:44 pm

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Re: Comic Con 2011

Postby TheButcher on Tue Jun 14, 2011 7:57 pm

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Wed Jun 15, 2011 12:08 am

Talking Comics with Tim | Mark Andrew Smith
It’s rare that a new ongoing comic book series launches and successfully sells out the first issue, but that’s exactly what Gladstone’s School for World Conquerors (Image) accomplished last month. This Wednesday, June 15, Gladstone’s will release the second issue. In anticipation of the next issue, I caught up with the series writer/co-creator Mark Andrew Smith to discuss the educational institution “for the children of the world’s greatest super villains to learn the trade“. Once you’ve read the interview, be sure to visit fellow Robot 6′s (and very busy multi-site pundit) Brigid Alverson’s preview of issue 2 at School Library Journal’s Good Comics for Kids. My thanks to Smith for the interview.
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Re: CASANOVA Volume 3: AVARITIA

Postby TheButcher on Fri Jun 17, 2011 2:03 am

From CA:
The Top 10 Marvel Comics for September 2011
David Brothers wrote:2. CASANOVA: AVARITIA #1 (of 4)
Written by MATT FRACTION
Penciled by GABRIEL BÁ
Cover by GABRIEL BÁ

From the writer of Marvel's smash hit FEAR ITSELF and the artist of the best-selling book Umbrella Academy comes the FULL-COLOR rebirth of the coolest comic of all time -- CASANOVA IS BACK and NOW YOU can see what everybody's been talking about. THIS ISSUE: The world's sexiest and savviest superspy kills his way from dimension to dimension in a high-stakes, action-packed adventure that cannot be described in a mere hu-man "solicitation."
!!! 32 ALL-NEW FULL-COLOR PAGES. PREORDER THIS BOOK! IF YOUR RETAILER CAN'T READ YOUR MIND, YOU CAN'T READ 'CASANOVA.'
40 PGS./Mature ...$4.99

I'm not a super huge fan of Fraction's recent Marvel work, but Casanova? That's where the real juice is. The previous two series were done at Image and then re-released as part of Marvel's Icon imprint with all new colors from Cris Peters. Avaritia is the first new Casanova series in years, and I haven't read it, but I'm predicting big things. The critic Sean Witzke pulled apart the most recent Casanova story on his blog and found quite a bit of depth in those eight pages. This bodes well for the new series, which is named after one of the seven deadly sins. The solicit is all hype, which is to be expected, but this might actually be a book that pays off huge. Great art and great writing is all we really want out of comics, isn't it?


From supervillain:
Emma Peel Sessions 56 – White and dressed to kill.
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Fri Jun 17, 2011 2:42 am

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby Pacino86845 on Fri Jun 17, 2011 9:25 am

TheButcher wrote: IGN Exclusive:
DuckTales #2 - 12-Page Preview


Dude, Duck Tales?!

Is this a test to see if anyone's reading?

Well at least ONE person is, Butchy, so CUT THE SHIT! :wink:
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby BuckyO'harre on Fri Jun 17, 2011 11:20 am

Pacino86845 wrote:
TheButcher wrote: IGN Exclusive:
DuckTales #2 - 12-Page Preview


Dude, Duck Tales?!

Is this a test to see if anyone's reading?

Well at least ONE person is, Butchy, so CUT THE SHIT! :wink:



Quiet,you!
They're setting up a Darkwing Duck crossover.


:oops:
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Sat Jun 18, 2011 1:00 am

BuckyO'harre wrote:
Pacino86845 wrote:
TheButcher wrote: IGN Exclusive:
DuckTales #2 - 12-Page Preview


Dude, Duck Tales?!

Is this a test to see if anyone's reading?

Well at least ONE person is, Butchy, so CUT THE SHIT! :wink:



Quiet,you!
They're setting up a Darkwing Duck crossover.


:oops:

Ha ha Ha ok no more Duck Tales links. Promise! :lol:
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Re: Six Guns

Postby TheButcher on Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:54 pm

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Re: SUPERCROOKS

Postby TheButcher on Wed Jun 22, 2011 3:30 am

CBR EXCLUSIVE FIRST LOOK:
Millar and Yu's "Supercrooks"
Courtesy of Titan Magazines' "CLiNT," CBR presents an exclusive first look at Leinil Francis Yu's art and sketches for "Supercrooks," as well as excerpts from "CLiNT's" upcoming interview with "Supercrooks" creators Yu, Mark Millar and Nacho Vigalondo."

MARK MILLAR on what readers can expect from from Supercrooks.

Supercrooks is such a simple idea – the guy that runs Marvel, Dan Buckley, said to me once “You’re the master of the obvious idea”, and it took me about an hour to figure out that it was an insult. Kick-Ass is one of those stories that is kind of obvious, it’s about what would happen if somebody without super powers in the real world tried to become a superhero. This is another one of those really simple concepts – all the superheroes live in America, so why do the supervillains always commit crimes in Metropolis, Gotham City, or Star City? Why don’t they just go somewhere where there are no superheroes? It would make life an awful lot easier for them. I remember thinking that if I was the Joker or the Mirror Master or someone, I think I’d head for somewhere like Glasgow, where the worst thing that will happen is being chased by a studly cop. That’s the idea of it really, only I thought I’d make it a bit more exotic, so I ended up making it Spain instead. So a bunch of supervillains head for Spain for one last job, for a heist. And I love heist movies – I’ve always wanted to do a ‘men on a mission’ story with supervillains. So the idea is a bunch of super-villains get together to pull off one last job; the biggest job of their career.

MARK MILLAR on selling the movie rights to Supercrooks before it was written.

Well, this was quite weird, it happened at Kapow Comic-con. I wasn’t going to announce this until next year, but we ended up having a gap in the schedule because we ended up not announcing the Dave Gibbons project. We had this panel where we said we were announcing something, but we didn’t have anything to announce! So Leinil drew the cover [to Supercrooks] for me that morning - he put the advert together in an hour on his iPad. Then we plugged [the iPad] into the panel at Kapow and the image popped up, and everybody seemed to really like it. We needed something to plug the gap, but it went viral and everybody started talking about it online. Universal Studios has some spies at Kapow, there was a studio presence that I knew about and there were people that I didn’t know about. So Universal heard about it, got in touch on the Wednesday and bought it that night! It was absolutely crazy! It’s such a ridiculous story but it’s absolutely true.

NACHO VIGALONDO on what made him want to work with Mark Millar

There is a very simple answer to that question – I was a fan of his work! We come from the same universe, we think of things in the same way, because he comes from comic books and I come from Spanish indie films, which exist in parallel realities. But I have been into comic books for all my life; in fact I think that somehow I am a comic book guy before I am a movie guy. I feel very close to [Mark] because my ideal is making movies that feel special somehow, they try to be unique at some point, what they never forget is to try to be as much fun as possible. I am terrified of boring people! For me boring people is the worst thing! I can feel that level of energy from Mark Millar books.

LEINIL FRANCIS YU: The idea for Supercrooks seems to have a slightly European feel. Does this affect the way you think about the concept artwork?

On the settings and background art, definitely, and the European look is also apparent on how I draw the bad guys. As for the lesser bad guys, the Supercrooks, it's a long process of back and forth emails with Mark Millar. I think I spent four or five solid days of nothing but designs and emails with Mark. It was long but well worth it.

Check out CLiNT #9 to read more about Supercrooks and a first look at more never before seen artwork by Leinil Francis Yu!

CLiNT #9 is on-sale June 30 in the UK and July 26 in the US, available from all good retailers and specialist comic stores.




From Millar World:
SUPERCROOKS BY MILLAR AND LEINIL YU - PLUS INTERVIEW WITH DIRECTOR NACHO VIGALONDO
MARK MILLAR wrote:The full Supercrooks interview plus complete art preview can be found in Clint #9 (in shops next week, some comic shops THIS week), but here's a nice little taster on CBR:

http://www.comicbook...rticle&id=32891

We should have the comic out January or February. Leinil has to finish Superior first and was delayed for six months with the Death of Spidey storyline in Ultimate Avengers Vs New Ultimates. But he should be started on this soon as the four issue series in your paws right at the start of the new year. I've had a GREAT time writing this and, as you know, the movie rights got snapped up at Kapow literally as soon as we announced the thing. Very exciting as Nacho and I now on page 62 of the screenplay, the movie being fast-tracked so quickly it makes Kick-Ass look like Terence Malick put it together. Exciting times and we're both very buzzed up about the project.

More as it happens, the other previews to appear a couple of months down the line.

MM
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Re: A Little Bit of FUNK

Postby TheButcher on Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:06 pm

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Re: SUPERCROOKS

Postby TheButcher on Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:15 am

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:49 pm

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby DennisMM on Fri Jul 01, 2011 9:16 pm

I got the July Diamond Previews today. Time to start slogging through descriptions of the 52 DC #1s arriving in September.
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:52 am

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:53 am

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Re: A Little Bit of FUNK

Postby TheButcher on Fri Jul 08, 2011 4:01 pm

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Re: A Little Bit of FUNK

Postby TheButcher on Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:41 am

From BC:
Kagan McLeod’s Infinite Kung Fu In Video
Infinite Kung Fu - Trailer
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:48 am

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Re: Legion Of Monsters #1

Postby TheButcher on Fri Jul 15, 2011 7:09 pm

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby so sorry on Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:22 pm

Frank Miller's Holy Terror preview

And man does it look like shit! I think this is based on his idea of Batman fighting terrorists, right? Help me out Comic Book Guy(s). In any event, looks like Batman with guns.

Me thinks this guy has crawled up his own ass and can't see that what he's doing is hogwash. Speaking of which, whatever happened to Todd McFarlane?
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby DennisMM on Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:19 pm

so sorry wrote:Frank Miller's Holy Terror preview

And man does it look like shit! I think this is based on his idea of Batman fighting terrorists, right? Help me out Comic Book Guy(s). In any event, looks like Batman with guns.

Me thinks this guy has crawled up his own ass and can't see that what he's doing is hogwash. Speaking of which, whatever happened to Todd McFarlane?


Correct, so sorry. For years, Miller said he was working on a book titled, "Holy Terror! Batman." DC Comics, to the best of my memory, never confirmed that the company was publishing it. Once it became clear that DC wasn't interested, Miller took his ball to play elsewhere and revised the whole book around this Fixer character he "created."

McFarlane still sometimes co-writes Spawn and enjoys having more money than some gods.

I'm going to cross-post this in the Holy Terror! Batman (Batman vs. al Qaeda) thread
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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:35 pm

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:39 pm

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Re: The Complete Flash Gordon Library

Postby TheButcher on Wed Aug 10, 2011 10:58 pm

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Re: Wizard World Chicago Comic-Con 2011

Postby TheButcher on Fri Aug 12, 2011 12:40 am

Mr. Incredible—Lou Ferrigno—is Pumped for Chicago Comic-Con
SPOILERS
Tony Peregrin wrote:Everyone’s favorite gamma-ray giant, Lou Ferrigno, best known for his role as the mean, green Goliath in the popular late 70’s television series “The Incredible Hulk” stomps into town this weekend as part of the Wizard World Chicago Comic-Con, a pantheon of action stars, comic book legends, and sci-fi royalty (“Star Trek TNG’s” Patrick Stewart, natch).

In addition to Stewart’s rare Q&A session ("Engage!", "Computer. Prep - Tea. Earl Grey. Hot."), Christopher Lloyd (Back to the Future, Taxi), Anthony Michael Hall (Sixteen Candles, The Dark Knight, The Dead Zone), Pam Grier (Smallville) and Felicia Day (“The Guild”) will be featured panelists at Comic-Con, as will a selection of some 500 celebrity guests and comic book artists and creators. (Special programming note: “V’s” Morena Baccarin, a top-tier guest for the Con, had to back out due to a filming conflict.)

Also on the docket: Hometown alt-rock hero Billy Corgan. No, he hasn’t been bitten by a radioactive spider or granted a special power ring (at least, as far as we know). Corgan, a two-time Grammy Award winner, is the “creative director” for a new wrestling promotion, Resistance Pro, which will make its debut at the Con on Saturday.

Lou Ferrigno squeezed us into his hectic schedule to chat about the Chicago Comic-Con and how these shows have evolved over the years; his advice for teen victims of bullying; and his voice-over role in the upcoming film “The Avengers.”

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Re: FLASH GORDON

Postby TheButcher on Thu Aug 25, 2011 4:45 pm

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Re: Comic Book News & Previews

Postby TheButcher on Mon Aug 29, 2011 2:30 am

From CBR:
Fan Expo: Van Lente Does the Monster Mash With "Destroyers"
Dave Richards wrote:Marvel Comics has a long, proud history of monster stories. In the '50s, the publisher spun tales featuring all sorts of menacing, strange and often gigantic creatures. When Stan Lee began creating the Marvel Universe in the '60s, super heroes became the company’s focus, but many of these heroes, like the Hulk and the Thing, had monstrous appearances.

In 2012, these hulking heroes will be all that stands in the way of a new horde of rampaging creatures out to decimate humanity. This is the premise of "Destroyers," a five-issue miniseries by writer Fred Van Lente and artist Kyle Hotz featuring an all-star team of Marvel's most monstrous heroes. CBR News spoke with Van Lente about the February-launching title announced yesterday during the "Pint O' C.B." panel at the Fan Expo Canada convention in Toronto.

With Greg Pak's "Incredible Hulks" coming to an end, Marvel realized two of the title's main players, A-Bomb (Rick Jones) and She-Hulk (Jennifer Walters), would be left without a book. "Mark Paniccia asked me if I had any ideas. He already had the Destroyers name, which I loved, and I thought, why don't we up the star power and add Ben Grimm and Hank McCoy to the team?" Van Lente told CBR News. "Then, when Bill Rosemann came on board as editor, he had the great idea of using Karkas of the Deviants, who is one of my all time favorite Jack Kirby creations. So this book was definitely a team concept; a team concept for a team."

The Thing, the Beast, A-Bomb, She-Hulk and Karkas are just the five biggest names on the Destroyers whose ranks will also include other lesser-known and fan-favorite characters. "We're going to learn that the Destroyers is actually group that dates all the way back the age of dinosaurs, because one of the group's original members was Devil Dinosaur! Devil is a huge part of this series, as well as his friend Moon-Boy," Van Lente stated. "We'll also see Rick Jones' estranged wife Marlo Chandler who, as readers of Greg Pak's 'Hulk' run know, is the new Harpy. Plus, once our heroes hit the high seas, it will be a challenge to not include a certain Canadian female that is near and dear to my heart -- and an aquatic monster."

Van Lente's "Destroyers" cast members are all strange and unusual looking heroes, an undeniably an eclectic bunch, and as such, the writer is having a lot of fun examining their different personalities and bouncing them off one another. "A lot of this series is about how monsters feel about being monsters and how comfortable they are with it. Hank McCoy is probably the most comfortable in his furry blue skin. He's got an analytical mind. In this story, a colleague from his past gets murdered. That sets him on a quest to solve a mystery and puts him on a collision course with the Destroyers," Van Lente said. "Ben Grimm is someone who, despite all his heroic tendencies and despite being loved by millions, is still bitter over the fact that he's a giant pile of orange rock. That's something he's always going to struggle with.

"Rick Jones, on the other hand, has the opposite problem. He inadvertently created the most powerful monster in Marvel history who, of course, is the Hulk, because Bruce Banner had to rescue him from that G-Bomb site. Even when he wasn't A-Bomb, Rick Jones still saw himself as a monster in a metaphorical sense," Van Lente continued. "Karkas is a very sensitive monster. It's an ironic thing, since his skin is impenetrable. If Beast is the brains of the Destroyers, Karkas is the soul. He has the heart of a poet philosopher and in many ways, he's the one instrumental in bringing all these monsters together to stop a threat that promises to end all human life on Earth in much the same way Devil Dinosaur's friends were wiped out millions of years prior."

As She-Hulk, Jen Walters may not look entirely human, but she does have the ability to transform back into her human form, which gives her an interesting perspective in a team of monstrous heroes like the "Destroyers." "The thing that's both great and difficult about Jen is that she really loves being a super hero, and to actually like being a super hero is one of the most un-Marvel things in the world," Van Lente remarked. "Usually, you're a criminal, experiencing some form of prejudice, made of orange rocks or whatever, but Jen is a very unique Stan Lee co-creation in that she would be totally happy being She-Hulk all the time."

At the center of things in "Destroyers" is the character the team gets their name from, the World War II hero known as the Destroyer. "This is the original Destroyer from the Invaders era. He puts this team together to wipe away one of his biggest failures from World War II, where he had the chance to do something that would have kept this current crisis from coming about. In many ways, this is a story of redemption for him," Van Lente said. "These characters all join the Destroyer's team because he might have the solution to curing monsters in general and all these guys of their various conditions."

Most of the members of the "Destroyers" have experience working as a member of a super team or a large group, but when this grouping initially comes together, their dynamic will be an uneasy one. "Something else is at work -- I don't want to give too much away," Van Lente said. "The strange thing is that they're all used to being the monsters in their particular groups, except maybe She-Hulk. A lot of them don't know how to react in this situation. Marlo's reaction is probably the most interesting because she has just gotten her powers and is just getting used to them. She's definitely the odd woman out, here."

The "Destroyers" are going to have to find a way to work together quickly, however, if they hope to solve the million year old puzzle at the heart of Van Lente's story. "The clues to our mystery can be found in fossil records. It involves the first and possibly only battle between two sets of Kirby Characters: Devil Dinosaur and Moon-Boy versus the Deviants," Van Lente said. "We'll see what Warlord Kro was up to at that time. It's a secret that's been buried for millions of years and is now being unearthed in the present day. The Deviants in general will be a huge part of this series, as will Warlord Kro, who is another one of my all time favorite Kirby creations.

"If I can put my Kirby-nerd hat on for a second, Warlord Kro is unique among the Deviants in that he's like the Eternals in that he's very long lived," Van Lente continued. "The average Deviant has a life span that's slightly longer than a human's. Kro is still around in the present, but reader's shouldn't assume he's behind everything that's going on in 'Destroyers.' He's a complex character with a complex agenda, and that's what is great about him. Our villainous mastermind is a long standing Marvel character whose identity will be revealed over the course of the series."

In addition to this mysterious mastermind, the Destroyers will also find themselves contending with a veritable army of monsters. "The fun part of this in many ways, is going back to that late '50s, the 'Tales to Astonish' and 'Strange Tales' giant monster era, which is remembered fondly by lots of Marvel fans, myself included. What Kyle and I are going to try and do is come up with some new and potentially scary monsters for our heroes to battle as opposed to just trotting out old favorites like Googam, Groot and Fin Fang Foom," Van Lente said. "This is definitely influenced by movies like 'Cloverfield' and 'The Host;' the more recent modern giant monster movies as opposed to some the cheesier Godzilla era Kaiju, which I also love. It's really going to be ten tons of fun.

"We start with giant monsters laying waste to New York City, which is always important," Van Lente continued, describing the Destroyers' global itinerary. "We make use of some great locations in my hometown, like The Museum of Natural History and Central Park. I think the source of this giant monster will surprise many long time New Yorkers since they have walked over his back numerous times! Then we go globe-hopping. We're going under water, to the tops of mountains and to different continents.

"This is a mystery formed in the super continent of Pangea, before continental drift shoved all the plates apart. This is Indiana Jones meets Godzilla meets that Thing cartoon where the kid had the rings that turned him into the Thing," Van Lente said jokingly. "It's the kind of wonderful thing that only comics can do really well, which is tell a story with gigantic 300million dollar set pieces, heroic characters struggling with their inner demons and giant monsters and other scaly things punching each other in the face."

Van Lente is having a lot of fun with the giant monster battle scenes, and the knowledge that Kyle Hotz will bring them to life makes writing them even more enjoyable. "It's awesome writing for Kyle. This is a book that involves awesome things like paleontology and giant blue scaly monsters. I know Kyle's going to kick ass on it," Van Lente stated. "As often happens with these convention announcements, he hasn't drawn anything yet, so I can extoll him without necessarily extolling the work he hasn't had a chance to do yet. I was really psyched when we landed him. He's really jazzed and we've had a bunch of conversations about reference and the look of everything."

Because of the current economy the world of comics is in a constant state of election, with fans voting for books with their dollars. If "Destroyers" gets enough votes from readers, Van Lente is ready, willing and able to give them more tales of Marvel's most monstrous super heroes. "I think the entire theme of monsters punching each other in the face should be an entire sub-genre of comics," the writer said. "Marvel fans, we need to take Marvel back from the super heroes and give it back to the monsters."
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Re: Teen Titans: Games

Postby TheButcher on Wed Sep 21, 2011 2:59 am

From CBR:
Wolfman on the Long Road to "Teen Titans: Games"
Josie Campbell wrote:This Wednesday, DC Comics officially releases "The New Teen Titans: Games," an original graphic novel nearly three decades in the making.

To most ardent DC fans, writer Marv Wolfman and artist George Perez are synonymous with the heroes of their 1980s "The New Teen Titans" comic book series: Raven, Cyborg, Starfire, Dick Grayson, Donna Troy, Changeling, Jericho and Danny Chase among others. It was during their five-year run on the book that Wolfman and Perez originally conceived the idea for "Teen Titans: Games," intending to create an action-packed graphic novel to go along with their popular series. But after completing sixty pages of initial artwork, the project was shelved as conflicting schedules and creative burnout made it impossible for the writer and artist to continue work on the book. Despite this, Wolfman refused to give up entirely on the graphic novel and last year his persistence paid off as the two creators reunited to finally finish the tale.

With the graphic novel finally in stores this week, Wolfman sat down with CBR News to discuss the graphic novel. Laughing, the legendary writer confessed that he still held a deep love for his characters, admitting that even his cell phone ringtone is "Teen Titans"-related, playing the theme song from Cartoon Network's animated series. Wolfman then dove headfirst into "Teen Titans: Games," touching on everything from the decades long road to publication to the new plot of the graphic novel.
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Re: Mark Millar And Dave Gibbons

Postby TheButcher on Mon Oct 03, 2011 2:30 am

Leckomaniac wrote:



Fixed.

From The Huffington Post:
Q&A: Watchmen's Dave Gibbons On Comics, Tablets And His 'Super Secret' New Project
Michael Rundle wrote:Dave Gibbons is a British illustrator and writer best known for his work on Watchmen, which as one of the most influential and best-selling graphic novels in history - and the only one to feature on Time's "Top 100 Novels' list - you should really have read already.

Gibbons began his career in 1973 as a contributor for 2000 AD. Since then he has worked on comics featuring Superman, Batman, Dr Who, Dan Dare and Green Lantern, and won an Eisner award for his semi-autobiographical graphic novel The Originals.

He is now working on a "super secret" project with Kick Ass writer Mark Millar, among a range of other new work including Treatment with Dark Horse Presents.

The Huffington Post UK caught up with Dave ahead of his appearance at the Institut Francais' BD & Comics Festival in London (Oct 7-9) to ask him about comics, graphic novels and the prospect of a Watchmen sequel.

HuffPost: There is a certain narrative about graphic novels that's been around pretty much since Watchmen was released, that says they are comics for "grown ups". Where do you think that narrative is now?

Dave: I think with something like Watchmen you can genuinely call that a graphic novel because it has the weight and the intent of a proper novel and it also is the complete story. You start reading on page 1 with no prior knowledge necessary and you read through till the end, and you have the sense of being told, I hope, a complete and satisfying story.

I think also there's a question of audience, that comics have traditionally been aimed at kind of a juvenile audience, and I think still in Britain, if you say to anybody, or they discover more likely that you draw comics, they say “Oh the Beano and the Dandy I loved those when I was a kid,” and when you say “Well no I did this thing called Watchmen and it's about this and that,” they're a bit scared because that's not the kind of subject matter they associate with comics.

I think the problem with the term graphic novel is it sounds pompous, it sounds pretentious, whereas on the continent, they call it an album, which to me sounds, it's got more much of a connotation of a kind of a music single and an album collection.

HuffPost: I'm still personally waiting for the first Dennis the Menace graphic novel...

Dave: [laughs] Well, you know you could, if you approached it with that intent, I'm sure there could be something that was really fascinating there, but I think the character has truly only been conceived in enough depth to ensure that he's got a dad and a school teacher and a weedy mate, you know…

HuffPost: Do you think there's also a danger that graphic novels can become more like coffee table books than something you read?

Dave: I think the kind of thing that's happening actually, and this ties into what you might call the 'digital revolution', in that economically comics are in a really difficult place because the monthly American comic books which are maybe 22 pages of story, now can cost $4, which is £3, and that is a lot of money for really such a small amount of entertainment when you think what you can get on the app store or you know the several hours of entertainment you can get at the movies or whatever for not dissimilar sums of money.

So, I think what happens nowadays is actually people ‘as they say,' wait for the trade collection. But the way I can see it polarising even more is that you'll then want is something that is more than just the reading experience, you'll want something that is a beautiful object in it's own right that has extras, that has maybe artist notes or writers' notes, backup material, is really nicely bound, is beautifully printed, so you know I can see those two kind of commodities diverging even further in the future.

HuffPost: Traditional comics also have a high barrier to entry - some of those stories have been spiralling out of control for decades. Do you think graphic novels are attractive to general readers for the old-fashioned reason that they have a beginning and an end?

Dave: I think that's one of the problems with comics, is that in the 60's, 70's, certainly since then in American comic books, the continuity has been everything. Continuity is great because as a marketing tool it means that people will buy titles they wouldn't normally buy so they can see how the story continues in another part of a shared universe; and it does suggest stories as well that after a while you've built up such a kind of tapestry of incident that you can actually make some kind of a cohesive thing out of it. You can slot stories in where they seem to suggest themselves, so creatively it's very useful.

But, it does alienate the general reader, and I've always been a DC comics guy, and whenever I've tried to get into Marvel comics I've never been able to do it because I feel like I'm at a party where I don't know anybody, and nobody's going to introduce themselves to me.

What DC have done with the new 52 is to say, ok, let's try and reset everything to zero. But you never truly can. And even a thing like Watchmen does rely on a degree of cultural awareness. It's sort of what superheroes are.

HuffPost: When it comes to digital comics are we still waiting for someone to really use that medium in a new way?

Dave: Well I think we are sort of groping towards what is perhaps a new kind of medium. ... I think there is a new grammar that we're groping towards. I've been very involved with a company called Madefire who I think have got quite a revolutionary new approach to this. They've kind of come up with an authoring tool, and a way of distributing this material which I think is going to be really interesting, and I'm involved with them to the degree that my other commitments let me be, and I've always been a great proponent of that technology.

HuffPost: Are you comfortable with the fact that Watchmen is always going to be held up as part of the graphic novel canon? That when people try to convince their friends to read them they'll say ‘you should probably start with Watchmen.'

Dave: Well I mean that's what traditionally has happened, and I think because it has got such a reputation it is going to be on the basic comics or graphic novel reading list and of course, from my point of view, given that we get a royalty, well then, that can only be a good thing.

Of course, it's been a rather overshadowing thing in my career but, hey, I mean I can't really complain about having done something that's been amazingly successful. So yeah, I'm perfectly happy with the position that Watchmen has.

I think the fact that it stands alone is such an important thing that I hope DC can resist any temptation to expand it beyond that. I don't think that would be a good thing. I think the unique selling proposition of Watchmen is that it is complete and entire and self-contained and that's the only thing I fear, I say fear, the only thing I'm apprehensive about is perhaps that they might not be able to resist the lure of kind of burning the furniture, as it were.

HuffPost: Are there plans for DC to revisit Watchmen?

Dave: Well it did come up a year or so ago, and the matter was investigated quite fully and I think Alan [Moore, writer of Watchmen and many other graphic novels and comics] very publicly and vocally expressed his dislike for the idea. I expressed to DC more privately my dislike for the idea, but there are always rumblings. I can see why it is an attractive thing for a publisher to do. I do think on all sorts of levels that it would be a mistake, but at the end of the day, I don't have, I don't believe, there's any contractual way of stopping such a thing happening. I just would be very very distanced from it.

HuffPost: Do you think the UK truly has a graphic novel "scene" of its own?

Dave: Well I think the whole thing has become global, but I do think that each country has its own particular voice and I think maybe if you looked at the numbers then perhaps the British are you know over represented as it were in the graphic novel field. Although as I say, the real prize is to actually get through to the general reading public. The bigger presence in bookstores, and the fact that many people are being drawn towards the medium through an exposure to the characters and themes in movies, I think that's kind of moving in the right direction.

I've always felt that the comic strip medium stands equally beside all the other story telling mediums: novels, movies, stage plays, opera, you know, you name it.In France that always has been the case, and it always has been something that's been culturally celebrated, and I look forward to the day when that cultural aspect of the comic strip medium is more celebrated in England.

HuffPost: We're looking forward to the BD & Comics Passion festival at the Institut Francais on October 7-9 which will explore some of those themes. What do you think the highlights will be?

Dave Gibbons: The highlights of it for me are basically that I'm going to get to meet Jean Claude Messier again, and compare notes, because you know we work in a similar kind of field and we actually met up with each other probably four, five years ago now and got on like a house on fire. I know we'll have lots to talk about, especially how the similarities and the differences between the French comic book scene and the English and American comic book scene, and the way the market is and the kind of audience that we have.

HuffPost: What are you working on right now?

Dave: Well I'm working on a top secret project with Mark Millar who's the guy behind Kick Ass and Wanted and so on. This has been bubbling away in the background for a long time, and we're finally at the point where we are working hard on it, and the kind of onslaught is about to begin, but at the moment…

HuffPost: Do you have any hints to give us…

Dave: Well we've decided, as you'll know if you know Mark's work or Mark's approach at all, he is the king of marketing, and the king of teasing the audience, and we've got a kind of a promotional campaign which means I cannot tell you anything at the moment, but when the time is right, we will unleash it.

So that's something that I'm very excited about, and I've also been developing a property of my own which is called ‘Treatment' which has appeared in Dark Horse Presents which is an anthology comic and again, I'm exploring different outlets for that with the people from Madefire to develop it as a tablet based app.

Also I've had some interesting conversations with movie and games people as well, and so that's kind of going on at the same time, but at the moment really I'm completely focused on the thing with Mark, and that will be out next year, and we're looking forward to having some fun with that.
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Re: The Golden Age

Postby TheButcher on Tue Oct 11, 2011 5:30 am

IGN Video Exclusive:
Golden Age - Jonathan Ross
Jonathan Ross gives us the lowdown on Golden Age, his forthcoming collaboration with artist Tommy Lee Edwards, about a team of geriatric superheroes.
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Re: Free Comic Book Day 2012

Postby TheButcher on Fri Dec 02, 2011 9:39 pm

From CA:
Free Comic Book Day 2012: The Gold Books Revealed
Caleb Goellner wrote:Free Comic Book Day 2012's Gold Sponsor titles have been announced, with DC's "New 52," Marvel's Avengers and popular kids shows at the forefront of the advocacy-driven event. On May 5, fans can pick up these comics for free at participating retailers. Gold Sponsor comics are essentially the ten most widely available titles and will feature a number of familiar superheroes this year, plus special Mouse Guard, Adventure Time, Yo Gabba Gabba!, Peanuts, Sponge Bob SquarePants, The Simpsons, Transformers, Mega Man, Star Wars, Labyrinth and other stories. The titles were selected for "Gold" sponsorship among 45 different entries, many of which will be revealed next Friday under the Silver Sponsor category. See all ten of this year's Gold Free Comic Book Day titles after the jump.

From Free Comic Book Day's Official Press Release:
MOUSE GUARD, LABYRINTH, AND MORE HC FLIP BOOK

Written by Jeremy Bastian, Nate Cosby, Royden Lepp, Jim McCann, Ted Naifeh and David Petersen

Illustrated by Jeremy Bastian, Chris Eliopoulos, Cory Godbey, Janet Lee, Royden Lepp and David Petersen. Cover by David Petersen

This Free Comic Book Day, Archaia offers readers the chance to experience history in the making with a FREE, gorgeous, 48-page, 6" x 9" full color hardcover original graphic novel featuring all-new material! David Petersen returns with an all-new Mouse Guard tale that's guaranteed to tug at your heartstrings! Lose yourself once again in Jim Henson's amazing world of Labyrinth, featuring a fantastical story from Eisner Award-nominee Ted Naifeh (Courtney Crumrin) and Cory Godbey (Fraggle Rock). Get a new perspective on Jet Jones in Royden Lepp's critically acclaimed Rust, with a short story seen through the eyes of younger brother Oswald Taylor. Jeremy Bastian's acclaimed Cursed Pirate Girl hits the high seas in this whimsical, swashbuckling tale of wonderland journeys and unimaginable dangers. Nate Cosby (Pigs) and Chris Eliopoulos (Franklin Richards) present Cow Boy, a comedy/western that tells the tale of a young bounty hunter determined to send his entire outlaw family to jail. And Jim McCann and Janet Lee follow up their Eisner Award-winning Return of the Dapper Men with an all-new short story that leads into the upcoming sequel, Time of the Dapper Men. Witness the origin of a new, major character! And...the return of 41?!

MEGA MAN: LET THE GAMES BEGIN

Script: Ian Flynn Art: Patrick "SPAZ" Spaziante, John Workman, Matt Herms

"Let the Games Begin!" Part One: Don't miss the first classic issue of the hit new MEGA MAN comic series! The future looks bright when brilliant and benevolent Dr. Light unveils his latest creations: the Robot Masters! But when the nefarious Dr. Wily steals them for his own sinister purposes, there is no one left to stop him. No one – except Mega Man!

2012 BONGO COMICS FREE-FOR-ALL!
SpongeBob Comics Freestyle Funnies

By Groening/Hillenburg

Bongo offers the best in humor comics with a proud tale from the boasting barflies of Moe's Tavern, as they recount their close encounter with marauding beasts as members of the Springfield Bear Patrol. And Sergio Aragonés joins the fun with a story from his own past of how he made his first peso as an underground and underage artist. THEN, flip over the book for two of the swimmingest SpongeBob sagas from the series' hard-to-find earliest issues. In "Squidward and the Golden Clarinet," SpongeBob reads an issue of Mermaid Man to a less-than-welcoming Squidward. But this story has a musical hook even Squidward can't resist. Plus: a page of gags that go off the deep end by indie artiste James Kochalka.

PEANUTS/ADVENTURE TIME FLIP BOOK

Author(s): Charles Schulz, Vicki Scott, Ryan North
Artist(s): Charles Schulz, Ron Zorman,Vicki Scott, Paige Braddock, Shelli Paroline, Braden Lamb
Cover Artist(s): Charles Schulz, Shelli Paroline and Braden Lamb

Two stories of two boys and their dogs -- on one side, Charlie Brown and Snoopy, along with the entire Peanuts gang, come to Free Comic Book Day! On the other side -- boy Finn and his dog Jake, along with the entire cast of the hot new Cartoon Network series Adventure Time, adventure in the Land of Ooo for Free Comic Book Day! Get your full KABOOM! dose of "Good Griefs" and "Algebraics" all in one book!

STAR WARS/SERENITY FLIP BOOK

Zack Whedon (W), Davidé Fabbri (P), Fábio Moon (P/I), Christian Dalla Vecchia (I), Adam Hughes (Cover), and Daniel Dos Santos (Cover)

Han Solo and Chewbacca have a falling-out after a deal with a shady customer goes bad. When the client gets designs on the Millennium Falcon, Han and Chewie present a united front that can't be beat! "Mal" Reynolds, captain of the outlaw vessel Serenity, is no stranger to jobs gone wrong. But when the chips are down, he's able to rely on an amazing, odd, and diversely talented crew for help!

DC COMICS - THE NEW 52 FCBD EDITION

(W) Various (A) Various

DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 took the industry by storm! Now get an exclusive look at what's happening in 2012 - written and illustrated by today's top creators

TRANSFORMERS #80.5

Simon Furman (W); Andrew Wildman (P), Stephen Baskerville (I); Wildman (C)

The wait is over--after a 20-year hiatus, IDW proudly returns to the original TRANSFORMERS comic book universe, picking up right where 1991's TRANSFORMERS #80 left off! Optimus Prime, Grimlock, Kup, Hot Rod and all your favorite Generation One TRANSFORMERS characters charge into the future as fan-favorite writer Simon Furman and legendary Transformers artist Andrew Wildman present TRANSFORMERS #80.5! Reflecting back on the dizzying highs and the terrifying lows of the original run of Transformers comics, Optimus Prime watches over a Cybertron that hasn't faced Megatron for decades. But that peace shudders to an end, as we dive headlong into July's TRANSFORMERS #81!

Because the Fans demanded it! Thousands of TRANSFORMERS fans signed petitions urging us to make this book--and IDW listened!

IMAGE 20

An anthology featuring all-new stories with a mix of Image's old and new best loved characters! More details and a finalized cover art to come.

AVENGERS #12.1


Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Penciller (cover/interiors): Bryan Hitch
Start reading with this POINT ONE issue! Prepare for the upcoming high-stakes Avengers event with a battle between the Avengers and the Intelligencia, the return of SWORD, and the disappearance of Spider-Woman!

YO GABBA GABBA

Writer(s): Jamie S. Rich, Kali Fontecchio, Frank Pittarese, Evan Dorkin, & Sarah Dyer
Artist Name(s): Michael Allred, Kali Fontecchio, Jarrett Williams, & Evan Dorkin, with Han Allred, Rico Renzi, & Sarah Dyer

From the hit Nickelodeon show! Come join your GabbaLand pals Muno, Foofa, Brobee, Toodee, Plex, and of course DJ Lance Rock for a series of fun-filled adventures! Plus, an awesome Super Martian Robot Girl tale, too!
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Re: Free Comic Book Day 2012

Postby TheButcher on Fri Dec 02, 2011 9:41 pm

Diamond Announces A New Free Comic Book Day For Hallowe’en
Rich Johnston wrote:Aside from Christmas, Hallowe’en is biggest holiday retail event in the USA. It is also half a year from Free Comic Book Day. This year, Diamond have been promoting a bunch of cheap mini-comics for kids from a number of publishers, to give or sell cheap to kids duting Hallowe’eb season.

But next year, it goes big time. At the New York Comic Con Retailer’s Breakfast, courtesy of Diamond Comic Distributors, Diamond announced that Hallowe’en 2012 will see comic stores invited to participate in a Free Comic Book Day-comparable event with the big and small publishers creating exclusive content for Hallowe’en in a low priced or giveaway content, and media hype machine to drive people into stores.
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Re: Free Comic Book Day 2012

Postby TheButcher on Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:51 am

From Newsarama:
Free HARDCOVER Day? Archaia Details FCBD Graphic Novel
Albert Ching wrote:No, it isn't a misprint — Archaia Entertainment really is offering a hardcover graphic novel this coming Free Comic Book Day for, well, free.

The book will be a 48-page, 6" x 9" full-color anthology featuring entirely new material, highlighting six of their properties: Mouse Guard (by David Petersen), Labyrinth (by Courtney Crumrin's Ted Naifeh and Cory Godbey), Rust (by Royden Lepp), Cursed Pirate Girl (by Jeremy Bastian), the upcoming Cow Boy (by former Marvel editor Nate Cosby and Franklin Richards: Son of a Genius artist Chris Eliopoulos) and a follow-up tale to the Eisner Award-winning Return of the Dapper Men by Jim McCann and Janet Lee, serving as a prologue to the impending Time of the Dapper Men sequel.

The book will be available at comic book stores nationwide on next year's Free Comic Book Day; May 5, 2012. For Archaia president and CEO PJ Bickett, the move is a response to the fluid and somewhat volatile nature of the current comic book marketplace.

"We wanted to focus on where we see the market going in the next two or three years in an upward trend, graphic novels," Bickett told Newsarama. "The only way you're going to get a reader to understand what a graphic novel is getting it into their hands at as low of a cost as possible, and we considered free to be a pretty good cost."

Hardcover graphic novels are Archaia's specialty, with the publisher weaning themselves off single issues in recent years. Providing a hardcover as an item free to customers involves a bit more expense than the single issues Archaia offered at past Free Comic Book Days, but according to Bickett, not as much more as you might think.

"There's more of a cost to make it a hardcover than a single issue, but the way we structured the deal with everyone on this, it works out pretty much the same as if it were a single issue," Bickett said. "We did a very good job of managing our costs to make sure that this isn't just a marketing ploy. This is a legitimate opportunity for new fans to have a hardcover for the first time, in many cases."

Free Comic Book Day products may be free to consumers, but they aren't free to comic book stores — though Bickett says that the cost to retailers for the hardcover is "exactly the same" as their FCBD single issues were in past years, and in fact expects a significant increase in orders.

"There are no barriers of entry right now for stores, for fans, for Diamond, for Archaia to make this happen," Bickett said. "Giving them an opportunity to buy a very similar product that has the true product quality that Archaia constantly brings to the table only incentivizes retailers to pick up a bigger

In selecting the stories that would comprise the hardcover, Archaia editor-in-chief Stephen Christy hopes that they encourage readers to check out more of the publisher's books, but also wanted to make sure that the comics stood on their own with a beginning, middle and an end.

"The goal with this was to really create a true anthology," Christy said. "We're approaching this editorially as if this was a high enough quality anthology that if we weren't giving it away, we'd be charging for it."

This is in part a response to the habits of several other publishers on Free Comic Book Day, which typically offer a reprint of a previously released comic, or a prelude to a future multi-part story.

"There are two trends that have happened from other publishers that we've always tried to go against," Christy said. "One of which is doing content that's either reprinted or repurposed, which seems kind of like a cop-out. There's also the trend that it's the 'start of something bigger.' You can pick up this Free Comic Book Day hardcover and each story will be a complete experience onto its own."

Bickett reports that Archaia's last couple of Free Comic Book Day releases — this past year, they offered a Mouse Guard/Dark Crystal flipbook — received orders of more than 100,000 copies. With even higher expectations for 2012, Bickett thinks the hardcover will yield positive results for not only Archaia, but the comic book industry as a whole.

"This is clearly Archaia again showing clear leadership in the marketplace," Bickett said. "It goes beyond Free Comic Book Day. What retailers should see as a result of this is simply an uptick in graphic novel sales."
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