Takeshi Obata, the renowned artist of Death Note and Hikaru no Go, made his first U.S. appearance earlier this month at New York Comic Con, where he participated in a couple of panels, met with journalists and signed autographs. Viz Media, which played host to Obata, was on hand to capture video (below) of the artist banging out sketches of Death Note characters Ryuk and L for undoubtedly ecstatic fans.
Obata spoke with ROBOT 6’s Brigid Alverson at the convention about character design, saying, “The clothes I put the characters in obviously become part of the characters, so I am really careful about how I dress them, for sure. I take a lot of care in that.”
Remember Blue Ear, the costumed character created in 2012 by Marvel to convince then 4-year-old Anthony Smith that superheroes do wear hearing aids? Well, now meet Sapheara, a pint-sized superheroine with cochlear implants.
She teams with Iron Man and Blue Ear in Sound Effects, a new comic by Marvel Custom Solutions and the Children’s Hearing Institute of New York that addresses cochlear implants, bullying, hearing-loss awareness and hearing-loss prevention. It will be distributed later this month to about 150,000 students in grades 3 through 7 in the New York City area.
Secret Panel, the Chicago-based screen print collective, is launching a print series based on Revival, the “rural noir” series by Tim Seeley and Mike Norton.
Limited-edition prints by Angela An, Randy Ortiz and Revival cover artist Jenny Frison have been teased on Secret Panel’s Facebook page, but not fully revealed. They’ll be available for $30 each (quantities are limited to 140 copies), or all three, plus an exclusive Secret Panel print, for $90.
For this month, Chris Schweizer, creator of Crogan Adventures and the upcoming all-ages graphic novel series The Creeps, is entertaining fans as well as himself with October Monster Drawings, which he is sharing on his myriad social media platforms, including Tumblr.
Noticing he’d reached his 17th piece the other day, I reached out to Schweizer to see whether we could share some of them here, and also get his perspective on what prompted him to do them in the first place. While he happily gave ROBOT 6 his approval to run a few, I heartily recommend you go check out the originals — and the entertaining text he provides with several pieces.
Here’s what he had to say about the Monster Drawings:
Every once in a while, a Pokémon emerges that makes you reconsider the notion of catching them all. After all, not every one of them is as cuddly as Pikachu, and some of them are just plain disturbing.
Consider the Banette, a grudge-holding doll-like Pokémon possessed by “pure hatred.” That’s troubling enough, but now consider the Banette as drawn by Junji Ito, the wonderfully twisted mind behind such horror manga Tomie, Uzumaki and Gyo.
For Halloween, the Pokémon Company is teaming with the horror master for “Kowapoke,” or “Scarypoke,” a seasonal promotion on the company’s website trumpeted with Ito’s Banette illustration, which can be downloaded as a free wallpaper or purchased as a T-shirt. More content is on the way.
Here’s the ultimate find for the truly devoted Marvel collector: Stan Lee’s house.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the legendary comics creator has listed his walled and gated home in Hollywood Hills West for $3.75 million.
In the spirit of the Halloween season, Fantagraphics has compiled a weeklong sale on more than 25 of its horror titles discounted from 25 percent to 30 percent.
As with all of the Fantagraphics holdings, it’s an eclectic mix with a variety of gems for folks to consider. Consider the Jacob Covey-curated Beasts! Book 1, with work from more than 80 artists. As ROBOT 6’s Michael May noted in his 2010 review, “He [Covey] didn’t edit the book; he curated it like a museum exhibition. The book’s Introduction further reinforces that notion. It reads like a program, with a definition of cryptozoology and notes about the artists, the creatures they selected, and the approach the curator took in putting the collection together. It also shares interesting facts, points out easily missed elements of the book’s design, and even suggests the best way for ‘the enthusiastic reader’ to experience what’s to come. In other words, it’s not only a program; it’s a tour guide.”
The Metabaron, the ultimate warrior introduced in 1981 by Alexandro Jodorowsky and Mœbius, will return in June 2016 in a new series from Humanoids.
Based on a story by Jodorowsky and written by Jerry Frissen, the four-volume series will explore the mystery of what happened to the last of the Metabarons. A new 108-page book, or cycle, will released every eight months, each drawn by a different artist: The first will be illustrated by rising star Valentin Sécher (Khaal: Chronicles of a Galactic Emperor), and the second by Niko Henrichon (Noah, The Pride of Baghdad).
Publishing | DC Entertainment Co-Publishers Dan DiDio and Jim Lee talk about the state of the comics market, DC’s upcoming move from New York City to Burbank, the growing female audience and more. “There’s also a diversification within the audience itself the past couple of years,” Lee observed. “You’ve seen more women, more female readers, in general. When we launched Batgirl and Gotham Academy, those books struck a different note, different tonality, and that was in large part due to editor Mark Doyle bringing these projects together with different kinds of creators. It was our way of broadening the base of the Batman family of books but doing it in a different way to attract a different audience. I think it speaks well to the future that we’re not just going to strike the same note looking for the same customer. [...] You can’t necessarily rely on the same continuity, the same core hardcore comics-driven material; you have to diversify, broaden your net and bring in different voices to the company.” [ICv2]
We’ve already seen plenty of 75th-anniversary tributes to Batman, but the year isn’t over just yet — and beginning Friday, Mondo takes its turn.
The collectible-art boutique, which in July debuted a series of Batman: The Animated Series 7-inch vinyl records featuring Danny Elfman’s theme, will celebrate the Dark Knight’s milestone with a gallery show in Austin featuring posters and original art from more than 30 artists.
Nike has unveiled its full Jordan X Slam Dunk Collection, inspired by Takehiko Inoue’s bestselling basketball manga.
The all-red upper of the limited-edition Air Jordan VI ($250) features imagery highlighting moments from the series, paying tribute to protagonist Hanamichi Sakuragi’s “personal growth and on-court talent.” The Jordan Super.Fly 3 ($185), meanwhile, is described as “the canvas for the new sketches of the Slam Dunk world. The all-black upper provides the perfect backdrop to showcase the continued on-court legacy of Sakuragi. Even the shoebox serves as an additional platform to tell Sakuragi’s continued story.”
Manga lovers planning a trip to Tokyo may soon be able to stay at lodgings designed specifically for them.
According to Nikkei, the Tokyo company Slow Curve plans to buy leases for condominiums and apartments in the city’s Akihabara, Ikebukuro and Nakano neighborhoods, and stock them with as many as 2,000 manga.
If we’ve learned anything from The Walking Dead, it’s that during a zombie apocalypse, no nowhere — and no one — is safe. Not a gated community, a secluded farm, a prison, a fortified town or an abandoned factory. But what about a Zombie Fortification Cabin?
CNET spotted what Tiger Log Cabins touts as “the world’s first zombie proof log cabin,” designed to withstand any attack from the undead.
“Not only is the building strong and secure enough to stop any zombie from getting inside,” the description states, “but even zombie invaders were to breach the boundaries of your land, the design is intelligent enough to give you fantastic and safe vantage points to use any artillery you have whether it’s light or dark outside.”
Anyone with even a passing interest in comics art and storytelling should set aside some time to read this A.V. Club discussion with three Marvel art teams — Tradd Moore and Val Staples, Declan Shalvey and Jordie Bellaire, and Michael Walsh and Matthew Wilson — about their approach to staging specific action scenes in their respective books All-New Ghost Rider, Moon Knight and Secret Avengers.
“I used a lot of panels here of varied sizes because I feel it gives the scene an undulating flow,” Moore explains of an All-New Ghost Rider page. “I do that a lot with fight scenes. Speed up, slow down, rise, fall. It’s kind of mesmerizing to me. To make a comparison to metal: The small panels are like a frantic blast beat, while the bigger, clearer panels are like a heavy breakdown or head-banging riff. I imagine viewers’ eyes speeding up and slowing down, widening and narrowing, as they scan across the page. I think it’s the kind of page that warrants multiple, extended views.”
Marvel will launch a five-part miniseries next spring based on the Disney Parks roller coaster Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.
Teased Saturday with posters at the Disneyland and a Magic Kingdom attractions before an official announcement, the comic is the third series in the Disney Kingdoms line, following Seekers of the Weird and Figment.