Kiel Phegley, Author at Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources

Batman & Robin wrap up Joker in “Yarnimation” stop motion short

Yarn

The explosion of online crafting empowered by sites like Etsy has led to a lot of superhero-themed art projects over the years, but YouTube user Louie’s Loops has taken the practice to a whole new level.

Already a repository for videos and patterns showing how to create mini crocheted characters from pop culture like the Flash, Iron Man and Link from The Legend of Zelda, the channel just launched a series of “Yarnimation” stop motion shorts featuring Batman, Robin and the Joker.

Check out the fan film and a video on the Joker’s creation after the jump.

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Marvel inker Norman Lee goes missing in Cayman Islands

Gary Higgins/The Patriot Ledger

Gary Higgins/The Patriot Ledger

Frequent Marvel Comics inker, artist Norman Lee has gone missing while on vacation in the Cayman Islands.

Boston-area ABC affiliate WCVB filed a report this afternoon about the status of Lee, a resident of nearby town Weymouth. Apparently, Lee and his wife set out on a snorkeling trip this morning from the Reef Resort East End, but about 250 yards from shore the pair became separated. Lee’s wife returned to land and filed a report late this morning. As yet, rescue workers have found no sign of the artist.

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Dark Horse shifts three creator-owned series to digital-to-print model

DHonline

Though they’re remaining committed to a recent wave of new creator-owned books, Dark Horse has shifted its sales strategy for a trio of lower performing series.

The publisher announced this week that The Ghost Fleet from Donny Cates and Daniel Warren Johnson, Resurrectionists by Fred Van Lente and Maurizio Rosenzweig and Sundowners by Tim Seeley and Jim Terry would all shift their monthly comic output to digital first series. Plans for print graphic novels collecting the continued stories remain in place for the fall.

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Stan Lee sketches Spider-Man for young autistic fan

Todd Heisler/The New York Times

Todd Heisler/The New York Times

Drawing may never have been Stan Lee’s forte, but when called upon for a good cause, even Stan The Man can put pencil to paper.

That’s the focus of a rather heartwarming story that ran in The New York Times this weekend focusing on 8-year-old autistic Harlem resident Jamel Hunter. The youngest of five children to a mother who herself has physical disabilities, Hunter was the subject of a profile in the paper late last year when he received a Spider-Man themed birthday party. The story caught the notice of retired jazz musician Corky Hale — who just happens to be the neighbor of the 92-year-old Marvel Comics legend. Hale enlisted Lee to draw a sketch of Spidey declaring “Hi Jamel!” and sent it to the boy via Times reporter Michael Wilson.

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Comic-Con International encourages fans to #BeTheCheerio during maddening online registration

comic-con-signAs promised, the online floodgates opened this morning to get tickets to Comic-Con International in San Diego. And while the past several years have often seen anger-inducing hoops to winning a chance at attending America’s biggest pop culture event pop up, the show seems to be locked in to a workable — if still flooded — system for its 2015 outing.

With the show’s Open Online Registration window being the chief way to gain access to Comic-Con one day at a time, hopeful attendees are refreshing browser windows loaded to the EPIC Registration page and checking both the SDCC Twitter account and the #SDCCOOR hashtag.

But amidst the typical outcry over frustrating load times and missed opportunities, many have also picked up the banner of the positive accentuating hashtag #BeTheCheerio. Seemingly originating from SDCC blogger An Englishman In San Diego, the phrase is meant to keep hopeful attendees’ eyes focused on the prize. As you wait to see if you made it in, check out some of our favorite Twitter responses to this year’s madness below the jump.

[Update: As we note below, the show sold out of badges in one hour, besting the previous year’s record by nearly 30 minutes.]

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Behold every “Cobraaaa!” ever in this ‘G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero’ variant

JoeSmallWe’re no strangers to covers with a lot of characters around here, and the comic with the claim to fame as the most packed cover ever is 2008’s G.I. Joe: America’s Elite #25 by Chris Lie.

Now as with all things in the Larry Hama-led franchise, Cobra is giving the Joes a run for their money in a new variant cover by Adam Riches. To celebrate G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #212 (a turning point issue in Hama’s resurrected title promising “The Death of Snake-Eyes”), IDW and Florida retailer Emerald City Comics tapped the frequent Joe toy artist to draft a Cobra-heavy companion piece to the original cover showcasing every snake that ever fought for the ruthless terrorist organization determined to rule the world.

From Cobra Commander and Destro to the more obscure likes of Headman and Crystal Ball, they’re all there and available for order from Emerald City’s web store. But are there more Cobras than the 236 Joes on the original cover? Compare the pair after the jump.

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‘Ant-Man’ LEGO set is most appropriately sized toy ever

lego-antman-2This weekend’s New York Toy Fair has become a breeding ground not just for superhero toys but realms within realms of niche toys. And when it comes to specific toy sets, none inspires more fervor than LEGOs.

Super Hero Hype shared a first look at the initial LEGO playset for Marvel Studios’ incoming Ant-Man film. The “Ant-Man Final Battle” set includes figures for Paul Rudd’s title hero, the mysterious Yellow Jacket and a Hank Pym figure for every little kid who wants to fantasy play as Michael Douglas in wise mentor mode. The set also includes a ridable ant, “giant” screws and obstacles for the miniaturized hero and a new “super jumper” feature on Ant-Man that will soon become a regular feature in LEGO’s heroic lines.

While these toys aren’t exactly ant-sized, they’re close enough that both the real insects and the figures will inspire the same cries when parents step on them without shoes on. Check out the full set below the jump.

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Matt Fraction starts ‘Fifty Shades of Futures Without Violence’ campaign

winking-kateWriter Matt Fraction is no stranger to mixing a little bit of social activism into his comics work. But this weekend, the Hawkeye and Sex Criminals scribe is drawing attention to a charity not because of art he made but because of art he detests: Fifty Shades of Grey.

The international best-selling romance novel and its just opened film adaptation could charitably be described as having a complicated relationship with sexual violence. Or as Fraction put it on his blog, “So there’s a movie out this weekend based on books that romanticize, fetishize, glamorize and normalize abusive relationships…And while sex is great and finding someone into all the stuff you’re into is great, sex is not consent to violence, a relationship is not permission to abuse, and there are thousands of women and children who have to deal with that fundamental and erroneous misconstruing of truth and wild misinterpretation of love every day.”

In response to the fact that the film’s earning millions made him feel “a little sick to think about,” Fraction is planning on matching donations to the Futures Without Violence charity generated by the sale of Hawkeye merchandise on WeLoveFine.com between now and Monday. The proceeds of past t-shirt and messenger bag sales exceeded $2,000 for the charity that works to end violence against women. But if you didn’t get a chance to buy a “Hawkguy” product then (or are just grossed out by the Fifty Shades phenomenon), now is your chance to make your contribution count for double.

All-Star throwback: Revisiting NBA’s Superman slam dunk rivalry

LexDunkHed

Tonight, basketball fans will be looking to New York City, where the NBA is hosting its annual All-Star Weekend. The traditional midpoint of the league’s season, the schedule of events includes everything from celebrity appearances to skills competitions to a “Rookie/Sophomore” game, all leading up to Sunday’s All-Star Game. But even for the most casual of NBA fans, one of the biggest draws of the weekend is the annual slam dunk contest.

While the throwdown sets some of the hottest players against each other in a “flash over fundamentals” battle, we’re doubting this weekend’s contest will push nerd buttons quite the same way the 2008-2009 rivalry run between Dwight Howard and Nate Robinson did, drawing as it did on Superman iconography for one of the most dastardly finishes in dunk history.

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Todd McFarlane swears off the possibility of DC/Marvel freelance, but not crossovers

mcfarlane_todd-ROBOT6

Image Comics co-founder Todd McFarlane has made it a habit of late to open up his archives via his Facebook page, sharing everything from early Spawn designs to evolutionary charts. But this weekend, he held court on some of his publishing philosophy as it applies to his past life as a Marvel Comics superstar.

“Here’s the the answer to a question I get asked a lot: ‘NO!… I WILL NEVER DRAW for Marvel or DC Comics AGAIN!'” the artist wrote in a new post. “But it’s not why you might think…”

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Retired ‘Asterix’ artist Albert Uderzo surprises with ‘Charlie Hebdo’ tribute

AsterFixIn the long week since the horrific massacre at France’s Charlie Hebdo magazine, there have been a number of tributes from artists worldwide to the fallen comic satirists. But today as the story of the attack reached a violent end, one more creator surprised fans with some social media solidarity: Asterix co-creator Albert Udzero.

Retired since 2011, the artist returned to the drawing board today to pencil two “Je suis Charlie” tributes featuring his famed characters Asterix and Obelix which were sent out in a pair of tweets on the official Asterix account.

Charlie [Hebdo] and Asterix have nothing to do with each other obviously,” the artist told Le Figaro in an interview. “I simply want to express my affection for those designers who have paid with their lives.

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Charlie Adlard records horror scene with ‘[REC] 4: Apocalypse’ poster

AdlardCrop

Thanks to the pop culture ubiquity of The Walking Dead, series artist Charlie Adlard has become a horror franchise all his own. So it’s no surprise he was tapped to draw the U.S. poster for the latest installment of Spain’s popular [REC] film series.

The LA Times debuted the image which uses the monochromatic feel of Adlard’s Image Comics work to present [REC] 4: Apocalypse actress Manuela Velasco amidst the viral video-style undead at the series’ core. The film, directed by Jaume Balaguero, arrives in the U.S. via VOD this month. See the full poster after the jump.

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Exclusive preview | Bunn and Haun’s ‘Wolf Moon’ #2

wolf-moon-cropped

The Sixth Gun co-creator Cullen Bunn is certainly no stranger to the supernatural, but for his first major Vertigo comic, he’s biting into another kind of horror.

The publisher has shared with ROBOT 6 an exclusive first look at pages at Wolf Moon #2, by Bunn and Jeremy Haun. The series explores a viral werewolf disease that transfers to a different victim every full moon, marrying the conceit with a procedural detective story for a bloody addition to the Vertigo line.

Under a cover by Ryan Kelly, Wolf Moon #2 arrives on Jan. 7.

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Exclusive preview | Richard Corben’s ‘Rat God’ #1

RATGOD-#1-cropped

Richard Corben is known for both his classic horror comics and, in recent years, a spate of adaptations of classic tales of terror. His next project, Rat God from Dark Horse, blends the two, as it draws inspiration from H.P. Lovecraft to tell an all-new story of backwoods horror.

The story folds together Corben’s interest in Native American culture, commentary on the racism in Lovecraft’s work, and his own dense, shocking style of drawing. In the comic, an arrogant New England scholar sets out to uncover the background of a young student from a rural area, only to discover horror beyond imagining.

We’re happy to share an exclusive preview of Rat God #1, which arrives Feb. 4.

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Ed Brubaker on letting ‘Criminal’ out of jail with ‘Savage Edition’

thefadeoutcvrmagazineSince they signed an exclusive five-year contract with Image Comics last year, the crime-comics duo of Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips have been rolling out newer, weirder stories with the finale of Fatale and their latest Hollywood noir The Fade Out.

But at the end of this month, they’ll return to their biggest project, the anthologized yet interconnected neo noir series Criminal. Originally published though Marvel’s Icon imprint beginning in 2006, the series returns on Jan. 28 with a one-two punch of Coward, the first Image Comics trade collection, and an all-new magazine-sized one-shot titled Criminal: Savage Edition.

We caught up with Brubaker about the return of Criminal, the one-shot’s mix of prison life and ’70s genre comics, and the future of his partnership with Phillips.

ROBOT 6: You’ve spoken a lot about picking up new readers with each project you’ve launched at Image, and because it’s been a few years since you and Sean did a brand-new Criminal volume, I thought we’d start with the basics. How do you describe Criminal to those who haven’t read it? It’s a series with a high concept behind it, but it’s not one of those “It’s The Big Sleep … in Space!” kind of high concepts.

Ed Brubaker: It really doesn’t have a high concept, does it? I usually just lean on saying it’s won a bunch of awards and is critically acclaimed, because I don’t know how to “one-sentence” it. But let’s try …

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