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Food or Comics? | Sharknife shish kebab

Welcome to Food or Comics?, where every week we talk about what comics we’d buy at our local comic shop based on certain spending limits — $15 and $30 — as well as what we’d get if we had extra money or a gift card to spend on a splurge item.

Check out Diamond’s release list or ComicList, and tell us what you’re getting in our comments field.

Sharknife, Volume 2: Double Z

Chris Arrant

If I had $15, I’d skip lunch and dig in to the overdue Choker #6 (Image, $3.99). I almost considered waiting for the trade on this one, but I know once I see the shiny object in front of me in stores I’ll want to find out the ending to Ben McCool and Ben Templesmith’s story. After that I’d get Uncanny X-Force #23 (Marvel, $3.99), which still holds the crown for my favorite current Marvel book. I was hesitant of Remender & co. going off into Otherworld despite my fascination with the realm going back to my Excalibur days, but I’m being rewarded with good story for my allegiance. The only thing it’s missing is an appendix reminding me of older stories that he references here. Last up would be a two-fer with Spaceman #5 (DC/Vertigo, $2.99) and Walking Dead #95 (Image, $2.99). I’ve talked about both at length here, and they continue to buffet me with greatness.

If I had $30, I’d first snag Daredevil #10 (Marvel, $2.99) to see more of Paolo Rivera’s work over the solid storytelling by Mark Waid. Then, I’d rub my eyes to make sure I’m not seeing things and pick-up the 5+ year delayed book Sharknife, Vol. 2 (Oni, $11.99). I’ve been a big fan of Corey’s work back when he was doing inspired Mega Man rip-offs, and the chance that I’ll finally see this sequel is exciting and heartbreaking. I hope the quality of the book inside is enough to stave off my feelings about the severe delay the book had.

And for splurging, I’d spend my CBR paycheck on Gone To Amerikay (DC/Vertigo, $24.99). This book is at the intersection of three reasons I’d buy it: Colleen Doran, Derek McCulloch and historical Irish narratives. I’d hold McCulloch’s Stagger Lee up to any graphic novel of the past decade in terms of skill and potency, so to see him pair that with Colleen Doran’s crafty linework bears my immediate attention.

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What Are You Reading? with Jamaica Dyer

Conan #1

Hello and welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at what the Robot 6 crew has been reading lately. Today our special guest is Jamaica Dyer, creator of Weird Fishes and Fox Head Stew, which can be read over at MTV Geek. She also recently did a concert report in comic form from San Francisco’s Noisepop for Spin Magazine.

To see what Jamaica and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.

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What Are You Reading? with Andy Khouri

Wet Moon

Hello and welcome to a special holiday edition of What Are You Reading? Actually it’s just a normal edition of What Are You Reading?, because changing the font color to red and green, and adding twinkling lights around the border just made it harder to read.

Our special guest this week is Andy Khouri, associate editor over at ComicsAlliance, where he drops comic news and commentary on a daily basis.

To see what Andy and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.

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‘Two things I swore I would never write about': Abnett to write vampire/zombie comic for Vertigo

The New Deadwardians

Vertigo Comics announced today that writer Dan Abnett and artist I.N.J. Culbard will team up on an eight-issue miniseries titled The New Deadwardians, a comic set in post-Victorian England where the upper class voluntarily becomes vampires in order to escape the lower class, who have all become zombies.

“May I just confess that this is a story that involves both zombies and vampires, two things I swore I would never write about because they had both long since jumped the shark,” Abnett said in his pitch. “Then this idea came to me and wouldn’t leave me alone. Please be tolerant of the zombie-and-vampire-ness of this until you’ve heard me out. It’s essentially a detective story set in an alternate history England, circa 1900.”

Here’s how they described the book on the Vertigo blog:

Set in post-Victorian England, nearly everyone in the upper class has voluntarily become a vampire to escape the lower classes who are all zombies.

Thrust into this mayhem is Chief Inspector George Suttle, a lonely detective who’s got the slowest beat in London: investigating murders in a world where everyone is already dead!

But when the body of a young aristocrat washes up on the banks of the Thames, Suttle’s quest for the truth will take him from the darkest sewers to the gleaming halls of power, and reveal the rotten heart at the center of this strange world.

Abnett, of course, is one half of the DnA writing team with Andy Lanning, who together write Resurrection Man and New Mutants. Culbard has done work for Dark Horse and SelfMadeHero, a British publisher, including the adaptation of Lovecraft’s At the Mountains of Madness that won a British Fantasy Award earlier this year.

The first issue comes out in March.

Comics A.M. | Marvel, DC join Google+; Susie Cagle on her arrest

Google+

Publishing | Marvel and DC Comics are among the first companies to join Google+ as a part of the Google + Pages initiative, along with other early adopters like the WWE, Angry Birds, The Muppets and Pepsi. Companies that initially joined Google+ back when it first launched had their accounts shut down as Google worked on “building a similarly optimized business experience for Google+” like they had for individuals. Google+ Pages launched yesterday. [The Source, Marvel.com]

Creators | Cartoonist Susie Cagle shares her account of being arrested last week during Occupy Oakland. [AlterNet]

Digital | Digital comics distributor iVerse Media has received a $4 million private-equity investment for the expansion of marketing and product development for its Comics+ app. [TechCrunch]

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What Are You Reading? with Chris Duffy

Optic Nerve #12

Welcome to What Are You Reading? Our special guest today is Chris Duffy, editor of First Second’s Nursery Rhyme Comics. We spotlighted this anthology project all week here on Robot 6; check out our interviews with Chris as well as contributors Scott C., Aaron Reiner, Richard Sala and Eleanor Davis.

And to see what Chris and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.

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Trailer emerges for DC’s Resurrection Man #1

Another day, another trailer from David Macho promoting one of DC Comics’ relaunch titles. This time it’s Resurrection Man #1, by Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning and Fernando Dagnino, which marks the return of Mitch Shelly, the character created in 1997 by none other than Abnett, Lanning and Jackson Guice.

It’s the return of Mitch Shelly – and he’s still dead.

Resurrection Man can’t stay dead for long, though – and with each rebirth comes new and unexpected powers. But his many returns have not gone unnoticed, and forces are gathering to learn what’s so special about him – and to see which of them will finally stop Resurrection Man dead.

Resurrection Man #1, which sports a cover by Ivan Reis and Joe Prado, debuts Sept. 14.

Food or Comics? | Doctor Who, Batman Inc. and more

Doctor Who

Welcome to Food or Comics?, where every week we talk about what comics we’d buy at our local comic shop based on certain spending limits — $15 and $30 — as well as what we’d get if we had extra money or a gift card to spend on a “Splurge” item.

Check out Diamond’s release list or ComicList, and tell us what you’re getting in our comments field.

Graeme McMillan

Let’s give all credit to IDW for their sense of timing. I’m so psyched up in advance of this Saturday’s return of Doctor Who to my television screen that this Wednesday’s release of Doctor Who Annual 2011 (IDW, $7.99) seems like the ideal way to prepare myself. If I had $15, I’d happily spend more than half of it on that particular anthology. The rest would go towards closing out the current incarnation of the DCU, as I’d be grabbing both Action Comics #904 and Batman: Gates of Gotham #5 (Both DC, $2.99).

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Talking Comics with Tim | Dan Abnett

Heroes for Hire 2

Heroes for Hire

The writing team of Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning have come back down to Earth and the streets of Marvel with the new Heroes for Hire (H4H) series, which premiered in December. After reading the first issue, which ended with a spectacular plot curve ball, I wanted to find out more about the series. This Wednesday, January 5, marks the release of issue 2–featuring Ghost Rider and Silver Sable. Despite his busy comics and prose writing schedule, Abnett was kind enough to do a brief email interview about the series–and offer readers a chance make hero hire suggestions for future issues.

Tim O’Shea: After working in space with myriad Marvel universe alien species, what’s the most enjoyable aspect to getting to also dabble in the “nitty, gritty, human vigilante street action of Heroes for Hire” as you recently described it.

Dan Abnett: The change of pace, really. Bill Rosemann, our editor, asked us if we’d like to do something that was a contrast to the cosmic stuff we’ve been doing, and the first thing Andy and I ever did for Marvel US was a year or so’s run on the Punisher in the early 1990s. So we decided to go ‘back on the streets’.

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The Fifth Color | A New Hope

Oh Thank Heavens the Raccoon is here!

I knew it. I saw @Marvel post a tweet last night, and I just knew it was going to be good. I left milk and cookies out for my comic news Santa and OH BOY IT’S CHRISTMAS MORNING COME EARLY!

Just scroll down and take a look at Kevin’s sexy post about the most awesome of news coming down the wire from Marvel as Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning continue to look to the skies and dream of greatness.

From the press release:

Editor Bill Rosemann added “Take the assembled majesty of Marvel’s most powerful heroes, add on the cult-fave duo of Rocket Raccoon and Groot, pile on a ridiculous amount of writing and artistic talent, and top it all off with cool covers by Alex Garner and the one and only Mike Mignola. That, True Believers, is a recipe for face-melting, brain-frying, pedal-to-the-metal, that’s-why-I-read-comics awesomeness.

Hell yeah.

Since 2006, Marvel’s cosmic adventures have been turned upside down, starting with the very first Annihilation event, orchestrated by Keith Giffen. The threats were galactic in nature, the heroes small and powerful against the forces of true evil. While Civil War brought life-changing political stories to the Marvel Comics page, Annihilation brought back the wider-scope, cast-of-thousands style storytelling that made things like Secret Wars and the Infinity Gauntlet part of a True Believer’s vocabulary. From the first Annihilation came Annihilation: Conquest and the same life-and-death symphony was played for our enjoyment. Civilizations crumbled, characters struggled with new responsibilities and the weight of the galaxy came down on some very unusual shoulders. While they might have doubted themselves, and wrestled with the infectious Phalanx and the unbeatable Ultron to the point of personal destruction, the reader can’t doubt these characters and these stories. They paid off once before and they did so again, promising a new era of cosmic heroes in the form of the new Guardians of the Galaxy.

I was so sold on those books by the time they were solicited. The Guardians of the Galaxy weave in a lot of amazing elements with great space adventure, and I now care more about a giant sentient space tree than I do about a lot of X-Men. Abnett, Lanning and Giffen took two years and created a universe to explore, and I felt confident signing up for anything and everything they did.

Then came the War of Kings.

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Abnett and Lanning to assemble Marvel’s Annihilators in March [Updated]

Annihilators #1

In the wake of The Thanos Imperative, Marvel will launch Annihilators, a four-issue limited series that teams writers Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning with artists Tan Eng Huat and Timothy Green III.

Debuting in March, Annihilators brings together the Silver Surfer, Beta-Ray Bill, Quasar, Gladiator and Ronan the Accuser — the so-called “Cosmic Avengers” — as they attempt to “fill the void left by the loss of Nova and the Guardians of the Galaxy.” The miniseries is being billed as an ideal jumping-on point for readers unfamiliar with Marvel’s recent cosmic titles.

“We picked the top flight, first class heroes,” Lanning tells Marvel.com. “The wish list; the A-grade, to contrast with the mavericks and misfits of [Guardians of the Galaxy]. This is the anti-Guardians, though their primary role is the same, and they’re essentially the Guardians’ legacy.”

Each double-sized issue will feature a full-length lead story by Abnett, Lanning and Huat, plus a back-up story by DnA and Green: the Rocket Raccoon and Groot adventure that was announced in July at Comic-Con International as a separate four-issue miniseries.

Update: Read the official press release after the break:

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The Fifth Color – The Triumph of the Inhuman Spirit

fifth_color1Yeah, yeah, I know. Tomorrow is indeed the Fourth of July and most have stirring visions of Captain America already mixed about their brains. Captain America: Reborn has set us on a path to recapture our Greatest Generation’s hero of choice perhaps with a depth and breadth of understanding of our country, patriotism and this symbol of the ol’ USA none of us would have had without the insightful storytelling of Mr. Ed Brubaker…

… but we’re going to skip all that today. Captain America posts on Independence Day are kind of cliché, don’t you think? And since Captain America: Reborn #1 is just starting out what could very well be Act Three of the epic tale that is Brubaker’s Grand Design, well. The man isn’t done with it yet, so we can save the throwing of roses and the ticker tape parades for how awesome he is for when he’s done getting to the awesome parts at the end of his awesomeness (SPOILER: it’s gonna be awesome).

Let’s instead turn towards a story that’s coming to its own close and the war of Independence that no one may win after all.
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