Axel-In-Charge: Facing the 'Divided' Marvel NOW! Future
Saturday at Comic-Con International in San Diego, once upon a time, was “big movie day” at the con … back before every day became big movie day at the con. Still, today somewhat lived up to its reputation for being eventful, as the Avengers assembled on stage, Green Lantern movie footage was shown and one poor fan was stabbed in the eye while attending programming in Hall H, where several of the big movie panels took place. The victim was taken to UCSD Medical Center, while his attacker was taken away by police after attendees detained him.
In happier news, here’s what was announced on the comics front:
• Marvel Editor-in-Chief and Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada confirmed that Marvel is “gonna be doing some CrossGen stuff.” CrossGen, which published numerous titles like Sojourn, Way of the Rat, Abadazad and Meridian starting 1998, went bankrupt in 2004. Disney bought their assets that same year.
Their titles covered many different genres, from fantasy to horror to detective stories. “I think with the CrossGen stuff you’re going to see us attempt a little more genre publishing, which I think is much-needed in our imprint,” Quesada said. No word yet on what properties they plan to bring back.
• Kurt Busiek announced that American Gothic, the urban fantasy comic announced at last year’s WildStorm panel, will now be called Witchlands. The series will be drawn by Connor Willumson. Busiek is also working on an Arrowsmith novel titled Arrowsmith: Far from the Fields We Know, which will include illustrations by Carlos Pacheco.
Like clockwork, Comic-Con organizers have released the schedule for the third day of the convention, Saturday, July 24.
Below you’ll find highlights of the comics-related programming, ranging from movie panels for Warner Bros.’ Green Lantern and Marvel’s Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger to Joe Quesada’s traditional “Cup O’ Joe” and “Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 6: Scott Pilgrim’s Finest Hour vs. The Fans.”
The full programming schedule for Saturday can be found here.
10 to 11 a.m. Spotlight on Carla Speed McNeil — Comic-Con special guest Carla Speed McNeil is best known for her creator-owned title Finder. A few years back, Carla took new stories of Finder to the Internet, and the result was an Eisner Award for best webcomic of 2008 and a new series of reprints from Dark Horse. Carla talks about her work and what’s next in this Spotlight panel. Room 3
10 to 11 a.m. The Black Panel 2010 — This year’s Black Panel will be one for the ages. The focus will be on empowerment, education, real-world networking, and finally but never last, fun. The panelists include entertainment attorney Darrel Miller, novelist Nnedi Okorafor, artist Denys Cowan and writer/producer/director Reggie Hudlin, with moderator Michael Davis. Once they answer life’s burning questions, they’ll chill with a salute and Q&A from the audience with actor/writer/director Bill Duke. As always, surprise guests who will rock your world. Room 5AB
10 to 11 a.m. Marvel Comics Writers Unite! — The third in Comic-Con’s series of “Year of the Writer/Comics Writers Unite!” panels focuses on Marvel Comics and includes Comic-Con special guests Brian Michael Bendis (Avengers, New Avengers, Ultimate Spider-Man), Matt Fraction (Invincible Iron Man, Thor) and Chris Claremont (X-Men Forever, X-Women) in a discussion with writer Mark Waid (Amazing Spider-Man, Irredeemable). Room 6DE
Artist Darick Robertson has announced that The Boys #43, released last week, is the final issue of the monthly series he’ll draw “for a while.” He will continue to provide covers for the title.
Robertson, who created the title in 2006 with writer Garth Ennis, pointed to Dynamite Entertainment’s shipping schedule as the reason for his somewhat abrupt departure. (He’s listed as the artist in the solicitation for July’s Issue 44.)
“They make the schedule,” he wrote on the Standard Attrition message board. “I made my desires known, and this was what was chosen as best for the title. […] I did my very best to make the book come out monthly with my art. I never wanted fill-ins. I try to put my all into every issue, and make the series whatever I can make it as good as it could be. However, it takes a certain amount of time to create an issue. Those realities are what they are, and there are different choices with how to make that goal work.”
Russ Braun, whose art Robertson describes as “top notch,” will be replacing him on interior art. Along with providing covers for The Boys, Robertson will work on the Butcher six-issue miniseries, which debuts in July 2011.
Robertson encouraged fans who miss his work on the title to let Dynamite know. “I would liked to have been the sole artist on every issue of The Boys,” he wrote. “That was always my intention.”
Update, June 22: Robertson has posted a clarification on the Standard Attrition message board:
I have screwed up. I made several severely off-handed comments here on the “Standard Attrition” forum regarding my upcoming work on The Boys. These comments were born of my personal frustration with the monthly schedule and the pressure I have been under trying to meet it. I need to make things clear.
To begin, I am NOT leaving the The BOYS and I have not been permanently replaced. Nobody at Dynamite wants this and we are continually reworking the schedule and the artist line-up so that I can draw the best issues I can create. Every decision at Dynamite is made with me included.