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‘Black Lightning’ creator Tony Isabella & DC Comics reconcile

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In an era where the creator’s rights conversation is as loud as its ever been in comics, this week saw some surprising news quietly slip out onto the web: Black Lightning creator Tony Isabella and DC Comics have taken the first steps towards reconciling a very contentious relationship.

The writer has long contended he’s the sole creator of DC’s first black superhero to star in a solo series as the character wasn’t introduced under a work-for-hire agreement but rather a partnership between he and DC. It was only after Isabella sought to buy out the publisher’s interest in the character following the cancellation of that first series in 1978 that he says DC declared artist Trevor Von Eeden as Black Lightning’s co-creator.

While Isabella did some later work with the publisher — most notably the first nine issues of a 13-issue Black Lightning revival in 1995 — he’s spent the majority of the past two decades being very vocal about his discontent with the publisher and their treatment of him. Most recently, the writer spoke out against DC’s choice to revive and redesign the hero as part of the New 52 initiative.

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Shelf Porn | An office filled with statues, comics and more

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Happy Saturday and welcome to Shelf Porn, where one fan invites us over to check out at their stuff. Today Rob shows us his office, where he keeps his action figures, statues, comics and more.

If you’d like to see your collection right here on ROBOT 6, you can find instructions at the end of this post.

And now here’s Rob!

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With water, this Lamborghini turns into Captain America’s ride

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German graffiti artist Rene Turrek, who last month showed us how to unleash an angry Hulk from within a BMW X6 simply by adding water, has turned his attention to another of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes: Captain America.

Using a thermochromic paint layer applied over his original artwork, he’s transformed a Lamborghini Gallardo into what he’s dubbed “The First Avenger.” Exposed to warm water, the car’s seemingly standard paint job gives way to Captain America and an appropriately star-spangled motif.

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Darth Vader hot air balloon riiiiises in New Jersey sky

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A Jedi Master or Sith Lord might use the Force  to levitate themselves, but this weekend, they’ll just need a little hot air.

The 33rd annual New Jersey Festival of Ballooning is under way, and this year’s special balloon designs include a pair of Star Wars-themed entries, with Yoda and Darth Vader vying for bragging rights as the show’s most popular.

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Paul Lee LEGO-izes classic movie posters for Brick Fiesta

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For this weekend’s Brick Fiesta convention in Austin, Texas, comic artist and brick enthusiast Paul Lee created LEGO-ized versions of six classic movie posters, which will be given away as vinyl stickers to attendees.

While you may quibble whether Jurassic World has reached the level of a “classic,” there’s little arguing about the others: Amelie, Back to the Future, Blade Runner, Ghostbusters and Jaws.

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Dean Haspiel and Gregory Benton on Hang Dai and Seth Kushner

BWT_DeanHaspielHang Dai Editions is the imprint of Hang Dai Studio, the Brooklyn collective formed by Dean Haspiel, Gregory Benton, Josh Neufeld and the late Seth Kushner. All of them were already well known, Haspiel as a prolific independent cartoonist as well as the artist for Archie Comics’ The Fox, Benton as the creator of B+F, which won the MoCCA Festival award last year, Neufeld as the creator of A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge and the artist for The Influencing Machine: Brooke Gladstone on the Media, and Kushner, who died in May, as a talented photographer and writer whose works included Leaping Tall Buildings, for which he photographed many prominent comics creators, and Schmuck.

The first titles to be published by Hang Dai were minicomics that the creators hand-sold at shows, but recently the collective announced a slate of comics that will be distributed to a wider audience this fall through Alternative Comics.

In an interview with ROBOT 6, Haspiel and Benton talk about the evolution of Hang Dai, the new fall line and the loss of Kushner. They also shared some art from their upcoming books Beef With Tomato (Haspiel) and Smoke (Benton).

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This custom R2-D2 themed PS4 is the console you’re looking for

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As incredible as the upcoming Star Wars Battlefront video game looks, it wouldn’t seem right to play it on just any PlayStation 4. You need something like this, a custom R2-D2 themed PlayBook 4.

Constructed by Eddie Zarick, with some assistance from the folks at Astromech, it’s effectively a scaled-down, rectangular version of the fan-favorite droid, with a 3D-printed case and realistic sound effects. As you can see in the video below, the console features an R2-style red/blue light and makes appropriate sounds when certain buttons are pushed.

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Let Baymax be your personal bedtime companion (seriously, he’s a bed)

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Are you satisfied with your care? OK, then how about your sleep? If not, then this adorable Baymax bed may be exactly what you’ve been looking for. Better still, it will never deactivate.

Sold by Japanese online retailer DeNA Shopping, the “Baymax Stuffed Animal Sofa Sofa Bed BAYMAX Bed” — honestly, that’s what it’s called! — is a whopping seven and a half feet of adorableness. Made from polypropylene fiber, it’s pliable, allowing you to lay it flat, sit it up or even wrap yourself in a hug from the breakout star of Disney’s Big Hero 6.

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EXCLUSIVE: First look at Breyfogle benefit book’s Grimjack story

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An Indiegogo campaign to fund an anthology to benefit veteran artist Norm Breyfogle in nearly halfway to its $10,000 goal, but there are just 14 days left.

ROBOT 6 has an exclusive first look at art from a new Grimjack story by John Ostrander, Timothy Truman and Lovern Kinzierski that will be included in the book if the fundraising effort reaches $15,000.

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Comics A.M. | ‘Berserk’ manga has 35 million copies in print

Berserk, Vol. 37

Berserk, Vol. 37

Manga | Kentaro Miura’s action-fantasy manga Berserk has 35 million copies in print — 27 million in Japan, and 8 million overseas — Hakusensha’s Young Animal magazine announced today. Miura returned to the series this week after a 10-month hiatus. The manga, which centers on a pair of mercenaries in a medieval Europe-inspired fantasy world, debuted in 1989; 37 volumes have been released to date. Dark Horse holds the license to Berserk in North America. [Anime News Network]

Crime | Russell Brandom and Colin Lecher describe a fascinating case in which comics figured in two types of crimes, money laundering and theft of evidence. Along the way, they explain the importance of grading, how slabbing works, and why it’s pointless to steal a really valuable comic that’s already known to collectors. [The Verge]

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Yes, Hot Toys will release a Quicksilver figure — and here’s proof

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Just when it seemed we might never see an Avengers: Age of Ultron Quicksilver collectible figure from Hot Toys, a prototype has been spotted in the wild — or, rather, at Ani-Com and Games Hong Kong — alongside Nick Fury and Guardians of the Galaxy‘s Drax the Destroyer.

There’s no word yet when the 1/6th-scale Quicksilver figure, based on the likeness of actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson, will be available, but considering the recently revealed Scarlet Witch isn’t expected to ship until the end of this year or the beginning of the next, we may be waiting a while.

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Salt Lake Comic Con claims victory in trademark case, SDCC says litigation still ongoing

saltlakecomicconThe legal dispute between Salt Lake Comic Con and Comic-Con International appears to remain unresolved — despite what one side has claimed.

On Thursday, Salt Lake Comic Con issued a press release stating that the United States Patent and Trademark Office granted Dan Farr Productions, the company behind SLCC, the trademark for “Salt Lake Comic Con.” The press release further states SLCC co-founder Bryan Brandenburg’s belief that the trademark will “virtually eliminate this ongoing legal battle.” However, Comic-Con International fired back to state the issue isn’t finished.

In a subsequent press release from Comic-Con International, Dan Farr Productions’ trademark is clarified as a “Supplemental Trademark Registration,” which is distinguished from a Principal Register in that it “does not convey the presumptions of validity, ownership and exclusive rights to use the mark.” “As there is no opposition process for a Supplemental Registration we of course were not able oppose it, however we are engaging this matter as part of the normal course of protecting our already granted and incontestable trademarks,” Comic-Con International spokesperson David Glanzer said in the statement.

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‘Batman: Arkham Knight’ goes Pop! with new Funko figures

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Funko has unveiled a new series of Pop! Heroes vinyl figures inspired by the video game Batman: Arkham Knight.

Debuting in September, the line will feature Batman, Harley Quinn, Scarecrow and, of course, Arkham Knight. Whether additional figures will be released remains to be seen.

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Grumpy Old Fan | ‘Cyborg’ asks, what’s left of Victor Stone?

Oz never did give nothin to the tin man

Oz never did give nothin’ to the tin man

The comics I bought this week were full of ex-Teen Titans, and I don’t even read Teen Titans. Besides the usual mimbo antics in Grayson, Donna Troy and someone who looks a lot like Aqualad showed up as antagonists in Wonder Woman and Aquaman, and Wally West was mentioned but not seen in The Flash.

And then there was Cyborg, relaunching the Titan-turned-Leaguer under the guidance of writer David F. Walker, penciler Ivan Reis and inker Joe Prado. Last year, when a Cyborg movie was announced as part of Warner Bros.’ ambitious superhero slate, I thought DC Comics might well look to the original Marv Wolfman/George Pérez New Teen Titans stories as the foundation of any upcoming solo series. Now that series is here, and Vic isn’t quite the same character he was in the 1980s. The 2011 reboot severed his ties to the Titans in favor of an origin based around the Justice League. What’s more, 12 years of animated adventures as part of Teen Titans and Teen Titans Go! have no doubt affected readers’ perceptions.

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Have a thirst for the apocalypse? Official ‘Walking Dead’ beer is coming

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Survivors looking to quench their thirst after a long day off fending of walkers will soon be able to reach for a bottle of official Walking Dead ale.

According to the Beer Street Journal, this fall Athens, Georgia-based Terrapin Beer Company will release The Walking Dead Blood Orange IPA, which, as the name suggests, is a red India Pale Ale made with blood orange peel.

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