An "X-Force" To Be Reckoned With - Marvel's Mutant Militia Turns 25
Over the last couple of weeks Tim O’Shea and I have been reaching out to various folks around the comics industry, asking them one simple question: What are you excited about for 2010? We asked them to mention something they were anticipating, as a fan, and also something they were working on (if, of course, it wasn’t top secret). So we’re ending today with the first of three of these round-ups; watch for the other two to be posted sometime tomorrow.
I’m excited by a NEW GRAPHIC NOVEL from Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover that is coming out from Top Shelf this year, that I don’t think I can name because they haven’t formally announced it yet. But really, those two names and a full length work should be all you need to hear to know I’m right.
What I’m most excited about that I’m involved with comes out in just a few weeks, it’s AVENGERS VS. ATLAS from Marvel, where I think my collaborators Gabriel Hardman, Elizabeth Breitweiser and I have really gelled. Even if you’ve never read an Agents of Atlas story, I bet you’ll enjoy seeing the original lineup of The Avengers back on the scene.
Or you’ll at least want in for the LAVA MEN.
Jeff Parker writes a whole bunch of great comics for Marvel, including all the Agents of Atlas projects and Thunderbolts. He also helped us out last year with our Robot Love posts at Valentine’s, in a post titled I ♥ learning from comics. Tim O’Shea also interviewed him about Underground earlier this year, along with artist Steve Lieber.
First of all, I am excited about turning in Battling Boy, my next major graphic novel, to be published in 2011 by First Second Books. Battling Boy has been years in the works. I have a lot of faith in this project. There is a bunch of stuff related to the potential film which I would like to discuss–but can’t as of now. Same goes for the book. I have spent most of 2009 engaged in the film and book productions of this story. But the book is coming regardless of whether or not a film is made, and I am putting a lot of love into it. I hope the readers really get into it.
I am proud to say that Wednesday Comics will be collected as a large oversized book in May 2010. My 12-page “Adam Strange” strip– a tribute to heroes of yesterday like Flash Gordon and Cap’n Easy– is featured in this DC Comics special HC edition.
As far as American comics go, I am probably most excited about Sam Hiti’s new project, Death Day. He is a top cartoonist, and his latest project is full of force and menace.
I am really curious to see the Kick Ass film and the Scott Pilgrim film. I wish the creative teams on these films the best of all possible successes.
I am excited to see new work from Dustin Harbin and Kate Beaton. These are two talents I feel deserve as many new readers in 2010 as they can get, both are excellent and both have their best days ahead of them.
Paul Pope is the creator of many great comics, from 100% to THB. He has a blog that we like to link to a lot. I believe Battling Boy was also the most-named project for 2010 by the folks I contacted for this post.
I’m really looking forward to the new series by Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt from Oni called The Sixth Gun. It looks to be a crazy horror/western and I’ve had the unique privilege to see some of Hurtt’s art for the first few issues and it’s some of his best work. I’ve never seen a writer/artist team work as well together as they do together and gives me hope that writers and artists maybe can work to make something greater than the sum of the parts. Here’s a link.
As for a project I’m excited about — I’m looking forward to my first Vertigo graphic novel “Revolver” coming out this summer. Here’s a link for that.
Matt Kindt is the creator of Super Spy and 3 Story: The Secret History of the Giant Man, which Tim talked to him about earlier this year. We also ran one of his stories from Super Spy: The Lost Dossiers earlier today.
I’m looking forward to IDW’s King Aroo collection, their continuation of the Dick Tracy and Little Orphan Annie series, the long-delayed fourth volume of Walt and Skeezix from Drawn and Quarterly, Melvin Monster vol 2 and Thirteen Going on Eighteen from D&Q’s John Stanley Library, DHC’s new Harvey reprints and their Trump collection, new Yotsuba volumes from Yen Press, new Blackjack volumes from Vertical, anything by Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez, a number of recently announced Fantagraphics reprint projects (a Toth collection, the pre-code horror collection, the Jack Cole collection, the Dick Briefer Frankenstein book, etc), as well as Popeye vol 5, Captain Easy vol 1 and Prince Valiant vol 2. Anything DC reprints of Jack Kirby’s that I don’t have. Mostly, work by dead people.
Since you asked about our own projects, I’m anxiously awaiting the Beasts of Burden hardcover collection Dark Horse will be publishing. It will collect all the material Jill Thompson and I have done on the series to date, going back to the first short story from 2003 and finishing up with the recent limited series. Other than that I’ve got some Bart Simpson comics I wrote and drew coming out next year from Bongo, I’m writing two comics for Dark Horse which should be pretty nifty if all goes well, and I’m hoping to get something of mine finished up for SLG to publish next year. Not holding my breath on that, though.
I’m also hoping things will work out so we can manage to attend TCAF next year.
Evan Dorkin shares information on his comics, like Beasts of Burden, and Milk & Cheese, over on his livejournal. He spoke with Tim O’Shea about the former back in July in an interview Tim still raves about.
Most excited about in the world of comics:
San Diego Con, July 2010. I’ll be there as a guest. Last time I was there: 1988.
Most excited about personal:
Book II of my trilogy. “You’ll Never Know: Collateral Damage” is due out Fall 2010.
Earlier this year Tim O’Shea spoke with C. Tyler about the first book in that trilogy. She may have had the best opening line of the year in one of his interviews.
COMIC-WISE, WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT FOR 2010?
Oh man. I have to say, I’m still kinda starstruck over all the stuff that came out in 2009, much of which is still on my to-read pile. As I’m finishing up Tardi’s YOU ARE THERE I’ve got FOOTNOTES FROM GAZA and ALEC: THE YEARS HAVE PANTS piled up on my table. How can you top a year with all this plus ASTERIOS POLYP? Oh wait you asked about 2010–
The very first thing that comes to mind is my fervent hope that the third volume of MOURNING STAR comes out. I’m at the point where I anticipate new Mourning Star volumes with the same sweaty zeal as POPEYE; it’s monstrously exciting to see genre comics being done in a fresh way by a young creator–the idea that something can be well-written and funny and adventurous and dramatic all at the same time is sorta rare in American comics, if you think about it. I’m glad that manga is finally starting to rub off on American creators in a deeper way than just drawing everyone to seem vaguely catlike.
Also: DEATH DAY, by Sam Hiti, currently being serialized on his site in massive chunks will see its first book collection in 2010, which will almost certainly be near the top of a ton of end-of-year lists in a year’s time. So amazing, Sam Hiti is easily the MOST undersung cartoonist working today. OH! And speaking of Sam, his stylistic antecedent Paul Pope is finally releasing BATTLING BOY this year I think, ZOMG. I’ve seen some of these pages, and they’re pretty face-melting. This is like a kids’ book you wouldn’t necessarily want your parents to know you were reading, full of monsters and violence and gods and all the stuff that’s usually bled out of this sort of thing.
In my own world, in 2010 I’ll be starting a long cartoon memoir project called THE DHARBINS, which I’ll be serializing on my site. I’m still working out the somewhat surprisingly complicated plot–surprising mainly because my life isn’t particularly complicated, and it originally happened very much in order–but in the meantime I’ve been trying to flex my cartoon muscles with a bunch of one-off and short-series cartoon exercises, which I’ll be collecting this year in my first color special.
I’m also one of the organizers of the yearly Heroes Convention, which of course I’m professionally very excited for, this year maybe more than ever–besides a ridiculous profusion of guests like Ben Templesmith, Brian Bolland, and Guy Davis, this year Indie Island will be swollen to the gills, including a bunch of first time guests from the webcomics world, including Kate Beaton, Ryan North, and Christopher Hastings. It’s going to be like Tron in Indie Island this year for sure.
Personally, I’m excited about the release of How to Break into Comics the Marvel Way in March, which has been a long time coming! I think they’re going to be great comics that offer wonderful insight into how Marvel works and what we’re looking for from up-and-coming comic creators who want to work for us. Plus, it will feature original stories by some of the world’s best and brightest new artists who were the finalists of ChesterQuest, my international talent search.
Overall, with the world getting increasingly smaller thanks to the Internet, I’m looking forward to seeing more and more new writers and artists making their debut in any of the growing number of ways comics are released in this day and age. There are so many new voices just waiting to break out in 2010 and I can’t wait to discover their work!
C.B. Cebulski works for Marvel as a new talent scout and has written a fair share of comics himself, like X-Infernus, Loners and Wonderlost. You can follow him on his blog and on Twitter, where he’s been known to offer advice to aspiring creators.
Faith Erin Hicks
In 2010, I’m most looking forward to continuing down the rabbit hole that is Naoki Urasawa’s comics. Pluto will be ending in March, I think, and 20th Century Boys will continue on for many more twisty volumes. I find Urasawa’s comics thrilling in a way no other comics are … and by now all my friends are completely sick of me breaking into conversation to talk about how freaking awesome he is. I’m contemplating starting some kind of support group. For some reason he hits my storytelling sweet spot at this moment in time, just like Jeff Smith did with Bone when I was a teenager. I’m thrilled I have many more Urasawa comics to read… blessings upon the Japanese comic making machine that forces him to churn out 1200 pages a year! I feel terrible for the guy’s wrist, but you can never have enough Urasawa. I’m also looking forward to seeing what else Viz Signature publishes, as I’ve very much enjoyed Children of the Sea, Solanin, What a Wonderful World! and Ooku, all published by them.
As for something of my own that I’m looking forward to in 2010, my first graphic novel with First Second Books comes out in the fall. It’s a middle grade horror/comedy/coming of age graphic novel called Brain Camp, written by Susan Kim and Laurence Klavan with me on art duties. I’d never before drawn someone else’s script, which was both challenging and rewarding. I saw my artwork improve a lot over the course of the book, which was encouraging… although I’m still nervous to see what the reaction will be. Like me, nice comic reviewer people, like me!
I’m also planning to finish up drawing my second book for First Second in June, which I both wrote and drew. It’s called Friends With Boys. It’s a semi-but-not-really autobiographical story about a homeschooled girl entering public high school, and her gang of large hairy manly brothers. I’m just finishing up Christmas break with my family, and every year my brothers seem to get larger, hairier and manlier… I think they’re part Sasquatch. Anyway, I’m really thrilled that First Second is publishing this book, and I hope people will like it. Here’s a drawing of the main character, Maggie.
I’m also hoping that SLG Publishing, who published two other graphic novels by me, Zombies Calling and The War at Ellsmere, will be able to publish my long running webcomic Ice… provided I finish the sucker and all the stars align. Fingers crossed that the Small Press Comic Gods will be kind to us in 2010, and we’ll be able to make that happen. Hey comic folk, buy a book by an indie publisher today, they do awesome stuff!
I’m excited for 2010. It seems like over the ’00s we saw an amazing diversity of new comics being published, both online and offline, and I got to read them all and be a part of that. I sound like a total sap, but there’s a richness to the comics world now that I really love… I feel like I can find comics written FOR me, which is amazing. I hadn’t really felt that in the 90s, when I was a kid interested in comics and not sure what to read. I can’t wait to see what the ’10s bring us. GO COMICS! (Imagine me throwing up a couple of pom-poms here.)
Faith Erin Hicks is the creator of Zombies Calling and The War at Ellsmere, both available from SLG, in addition to the new projects she mentions above. She helped us out back in February with a post titled “I ♥ Anticipating Comics.” Follow her on livejournal.
I’m excited for a lot of comics-related things next year, but the big ones are actually probably the movies. I wasn’t huge into Kick-Ass the comic, but those trailers for the movie are a blast, and I’m especially excited to see Iron Man 2, given how great the first one is and how slick that first trailer looks.
I’m also excited for STAPLE! 2010, the independent media show that I’ve been helping to put together (and co-sponsoring) for several years. This year our guests of honor include Guy Davis, who is one of my top five favorite artists of all time, plus Andy Runton (Owly) and Chris Schweizer (Crogan’s Vengeance) and a huge selection of other creators as well. It’s always a good time, and seems to be getting bigger and better this year, and I can’t wait until it’s March and time for the big show again.
Happy New Year!
Randy Lander is the owner of Rogues Gallery Comics & Games, which you should visit if you’re ever in Round Rock, Texas. He can also recommend some good places to get Tex Mex in the area.
I’ve managed to somehow lose touch with a lot of the weekly comings-and-goings of superhero comics in 2009, but I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t curious about seeing the new “Heroic Age” status quo of the Marvel Universe and post-Blackest Night DC Universe, if only to cynically see how long this latest version of bright, positive, optimistic superhero status quos will last. Being a sucker for DC books, I’m also looking forward to both the conclusion (conclusion-ish?) of the long-running Superman plots from the last couple of years with the “War Of The Supermen” crossover, and Grant Morrison going bat-guano crazy with The Return of Bruce Wayne, but both come with a very quiet, very small print “Oh Please Do Not Suck I Want To Like You So Bad” trailing along behind. Can I say that I’m genuinely excited about Girl Comics without the internet jumping up and down? Never mind my misgivings about the title and the whole “2010, Marvel Remembers Women Exist!” branding; ignore the gender of the creators involved and, man: That’s one of the most talent-filled anthologies around.
What I’m maybe most looking forward to are new books from people whose work I’ve come to love recently: Scott Pilgrim 6, obviously (And the movie, too), but also James Stokoe’s Orc book at Image, and the unseen King City second half by Brandon Graham. Hope Larson’s Mercury has me very excited, as does the rumored possibly maybe new possibility of new Casanova. Is Paul Pope’s Battling Boy coming out this year, as well? If so, then I’ll be first in line for that and then some. I’ve read the first issue of Joe The Barbarian, and it’s got a lot of potential – Morrison’s script is a little rough, but it’s a stunning looking book; Vertigo’s made a quiet comeback over the last couple of years, I think, and between Joe The Barbarian and Fabio Moon and Gabriel Ba’s Daytripper, they’re coming out with some great stuff that not enough people are paying attention to.
Really, though, I’m looking forward to things that I don’t know anything about: Something that’ll knock my socks off without me seeing it coming. Come on, 2010. As Pat Benatar once said, hit me with your best shot.
Graeme writes about comics and other things over at io9.com, and recently contributed to our What are you reading? feature. And of course he used to blog with us back when we were at Blog@Newsarama, so he’ll always be family.