"Rowdy" Roddy Piper Reported Dead at 61
Welcome to the first “Report Card,” a new feature we plan to run every weekend. If “Cheat Sheet” is your guide to the week ahead, “Report Card” is a look back at the week in review. It will include an overview of top news stories you might have missed, as well as a look at the Robot 6 team’s favorite comics that we read this week.
So read on to find out what we thought of Batwoman #21, X-Files: Season 10 #1, Becky Cloonan’s Demeter and much more.
Fantagraphics co-publisher Kim Thompson, 56, passed away Wednesday after a battle with lung cancer. During the nearly four decades of working for the company he co-owned, Thompson was a key force in expanding both the artistic potential and the cultural footprint of comics in America.
“It’s kind of impossible to overstate the influence Kim Thompson had on American comics,” wrote Chris Mautner. “As co-publishers of Fantagraphics, he and Gary Groth transformed the way people thought about the medium, both in the pages of The Comics Journal and in the kinds of comics they published. If any one publisher can be regarded as the singular entity (and let me be clear, I’m really wary about staking that sort of claim) that made not just fans but the general public take notice and say, ‘Oh, hey, comics really are an art form and capable of greatness,’ it was these guys.”
Remembrances of Thompson and his work were posted on the internet by Jason, Heidi MacDonald, Anders Nilsen, Roger Langridge, First Second’s Mark Siegel, Chris Oliveros at Drawn and Quarterly, Craig Thompson, Sean T. Collins and Tom Spurgeon.
DC Comics hit the road this week to talk to retailers about their future plans and answer questions, which meant the publisher released several announcements. The tour kicked off Monday, which is why we heard about the new Earth 2 writer, the Superman/Wonder Woman series, “Lights Out” and Justice League 3000, from Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire. Later in the week, they revealed plans to release a 1,184-page Villains Month Omnibus, similar to the one that collected the first issues of the New 52.
Retailer Roderick Ruth wrote a summary of the New York City event for ReadComicBooks, detailing comments made by Co-Publishers Dan DiDio and Jim Lee and Senior Vice President-Publicity Courtney Simmons about “Trinity War,” “Villains Month,” Forever Evil, the lenticular covers and more.
The polybagged final issue of Marvel’s big event series, Age of Ultron, landed in comic shops on Wednesday, serving as an end for the 10-issue series as well as a marketing opportunity for several new Marvel projects coming up this year, including Avengers A.I. and Hunger. Although it seemed to leave us with more questions than answers, one thing it did do was bring Angela, the character created by Todd McFarlane and Neil Gaiman in the pages of Spawn many years ago, into the Marvel Universe.
“…the character has now been thrust into our world without warning or any say in the matter from somewhere else beyond the confines of what we understand to be our universe. Exactly what that means, what she knows, where she’s from, what her background is, how connected and connective she is to all of the publishing history that exists for the character in Todd McFarlane’s Spawn material, and how that all factors in is something you’ll learn as she begins to interact with the rest of the Marvel Universe,” Marvel’s Tom Brevoort told Comic Book Resources.
Mark Millar, writer of Kick Ass, Wanted, The Ultimates, Secret Service, Jupiter’s Legacy and many other comics, has been recognized by Queen Elizabeth II as a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for services to film and literature. An order of chivalry established in 1917 by King George V, the Order of the British Empire consists of five ranks: Knight Grand Cross or Dame Grand Cross, Knight Commander or Dame Commander, Commander, Officer and Member. The writer joked on his message board, “Soon the Sith will rise again and I will take my throne in Parliament!!!”