Matt Hawkins Archives - Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources

Comics A.M. | ‘Kuroko’s Basketball’ threat suspect admits to charges

Kuroko’s Basketball

Kuroko’s Basketball

Legal | Hirofumi Watanabe admitted Thursday in Tokyo District Court to sending hundreds of threatening letters to bookstores, convenience stores and convention centers associated with Tadatoshi Fujimaki’s manga Kuroko’s Basketball. The motive, the 35-year-old man said, was jealousy of Fujimaki’s success; Watanabe reasoned that, “If I somehow managed to harass and depress him, I could drag him into my suicide journey.” Watanabe added that he had been abused by his parents and bullied as a child, and had “homosexual tendencies.” He attempted suicide before he sent the threat letters and would do so again after he was freed, he told the court: “That way, society can rest assured that I won’t do anything stupid again.” [Anime News Network]

Legal | Attorney Marc H. Greenberg revisits the lawsuit brought by musicians Johnny and Edgar Winter against DC Comics over a 1995 storyline in Jonah Hex that portrayed two evil brothers, Johnny and Edgar Autumn. [Print]

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Food or Comics? | Snapple or Snapshot

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.

Snapshot #1

Graeme McMillan

It’s a busy week at the store for me, it seems. If I had $15 this week, I’d pick up Harbinger #0 (Valiant, $3.99), the one-shot revealing the backstory of the surprisingly compelling relaunch/reboot of the 1990s series, as well as the first issues of Fearless Defenders (Marvel, $2.99) and Snapshot (Image, $2.99). The latter, I’ve already read in its Judge Dredd Megazine serialization, but I’m really curious to see if it reads differently in longer chapters; the former, I’m just hopeful for, given the high concept and involvement of Cullen Bunn.

If I had $30, I’d add the reissued 7 Miles A Second HC (Fantagraphics, $19.99) to my pile. I remember reading the original Vertigo version of this in the 1990s, and am definitely curious to see what this recolored edition, with pages restored after being cut from the Vertigo edition, is like.

Splurging, I find myself drawn to IDW’s Doctor Who Omnibus, Vol. 1 ($29.99). I blame the lack of new Doctor Who on the television right now. That month-and-a-bit is far too long to wait …!

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Food or Comics? | Avocados or Avengers

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.

Avengers #1

Chris Arrant

If I had $15, I’d start out with Legend of Luther Strode #1 (Image, $3.50). I was behind the times on the first series, but now I will raise my fist to the air and decree “NO MORE!” (to the stunned silence of my local comic shop owner). Justin Jordan really brought a different take on this story, but for me the sizzle on this is Tradd Moore’s art. It reminds me of Sam Keith’s middle-period during his Marvel Comics Presents Wolverine run, and that’s nothing but a good thing. After that I’d get Stumptown #4 (Oni Press, $3.99). Some might compare Dex’s journey to that of Jessica Jones in Marvel’s Alias, but it’s anything but. Greg Rucka really knows how to make a story feel more than just mere fiction. My third pick this week would be Invincible #98 (Image, $2.99), seeing Mark Grayson get his powers back – just in time to be stomped into the ground, from the looks of it. Reading this series since the first issue, I’m noticing the colorist change more and more here; John Rauch definitely is a step removed from FCO Plascencia, and I’m still getting used to it. Kirkman and Ottley are delivering here so well that Domino’s should be jealous. (ba-dum CHING!) Last up in my Wednesday haul would be Avengers #1 (Marvel, $3.99). I’ve noticed in doing Food or Comics for as long as I have how I’ll routinely follow writers but when they manage to get an artist I particularly like I’ll fall over myself trying to get to it. Case in point, this book, with Jonathan Hickman joining forces with Jerome Opeña to kick off a new era for Marvel’s flagship book. I’m all for “Jonathan Hickman’s Avengers,” but I’m even more excited to see Opeña’s take on this.

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Matt Hawkins celebrates life by sharing his own struggle with suicide

Matt Hawkins

While many of us are preoccupied with Tuesday’s election, Guy Fawkes Day or what titles we’ll pick up at the comic store, Matt Hawkins’ mind is on something far more important, and far more personal: that day, exactly two years ago, when he nearly took his own life.

On his Facebook page, the president and chief operating officer of Top Cow Productions writes frankly about what brought him to the brink of suicide — divorce, a messy personal life and a belief that his children would be better off without him — and just how close he came to going through with it.

“Once I made the decision to do it I recall feeling an odd sense of relief and calm, which is kind of frightening in retrospect,” Hawkins writes. “I spent a few hours putting my affairs in order and wrote a series of emails that I saved as drafts to send all at once so I wouldn’t see the responses. I hand wrote a letter to my boys essentially saying this wasn’t their fault and that I loved them. I left the letter on my table with a copy of my will, etc. I then drove down to Santa Monica beach with my gun in my computer bag and went down and sat on one of the cliffs there overlooking the water. I couldn’t think of a better place to die. I sat there thinking about things still oddly calm and ultimately the thought of missing out on my boys future and the possible stigmatizing of them from my own cowardly death shook me out of the calm fog. I started shaking violently and changed my mind.”

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Quote of the Day | Matt Hawkins on surviving in a changing industry

“Here’s the thing that I think everyone needs to realize, the medium and the ways of distribution for putting out these stories will always change, whether it’s an iPad or your television, whatever version it is. But if you can tell cool stories about compelling characters with good art and design [you'll survive]. People have been drawing comic book stick figures on caves for tens of thousands of years. People like this kind of story. There’s going to be storytelling in some form forever because people like to be entertained. If you can tell and build great characters and stories and tug at the heart strings and hit emotional highs and lows that will effect people with the storytelling, I think you’re going to survive and shift in medium as long as you don’t do anything catastrophic.”

– Top Cow President Matt Hawkins, on the challenges facing a changing comics industry

Food or Comics? | Havarti or The Hive

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.

The Hive

Chris Arrant

If I had $15, I’d make up for lost time and get the first collection of Mind the Gap (Image, $9.99). Rodin Esquejo is an absolute gem in my opinion, and Jim McCann looks to have crafted a story with some definite suspenseful power. After that I’d get James Stokoe’s Godzilla: Half Century War #3 (IDW, $3.99). This has become one of my favorite serials to come out, which for a work-for-hire book is tough. Instead of doing a story in service of the concept, it uses the concept to create a great story – and Stokoe really loves Godzilla and puts a face to those humans who oppose him. Finally, I’d get the free Cyber Force #1 (Image/Top Cow, $0) because, well, it’s free. I have an unabashed love for the original Cyber Force, and previous reboots haven’t really gelled the way I wanted to. I’m excited to see what Matt Hawkins brings to this, and I’m glad Silvestri is involved even if only on covers and designs.

If I had $30, I’d first stop for Glory #29 (Image, $3.99). I tend to read this series in built-up bursts, and I’m overdue to catch up. I like the monstrous rage Ross Campbell brings to this, and seeing Joe Keatinge capitalize on the artist he has to create a broader story is thrilling. After that I’d get a Marvel three-pack in Hawkeye #3 (Marvel, $2.99), Daredevil #19 (Marvel, $2.99) and AvX Consequences #2 (Marvel, $3.99). I’d buy David Aja illustrating a phone book – seeing him getting a great story is icing on the cake.

If I could splurge, I’d lash onto Charles Burns’ The Hive (Pantheon, $21.95). I’m reluctantly late to the game when it comes to Charles Burns, but X’ed Out clued me into his awesome cartooning power. After devouring his previous work, I’m excited to read The Hive as it first comes out. I don’t quite know what to expect, but after finally coming around to Burn’s skill I’m up for pretty much anything. Continue Reading »

Top Cow’s Cyber Force Kickstarter campaign raises $117,135

Top Cow Productions on Friday concluded its Kickstarter campaign to fund a Cyber Force revival with $117,135, exceeding its goal by more than $42,000.

Announced early last month, the resurrection of the series coincides with the 20th anniversary of the Marc Silvestri comic that launched Top Cow Productions. The company hoped to raise enough money through the crowd-funding website to make the first five issues of the reimagined series available for free, both digitally and in print. While the original comic followed a group of cybernetically enhanced mutants on the run from an international conglomerate, the Cyber Force in the new series — by Silvestri, Matt Hawkins and Khoi Pham — is described as “bio-cybernetic steampunk.”

“From Marc, myself and everyone at Top Cow thank you so much for your pledges, your support and spreading the word around for us,” Hawkins wrote Friday in a Kickstarter update. He had said last week that if the campaign surpassed $100,000 Top Cow would make copies of the first trade paperback available for free to libraries that request them, and work with charities to provide comics to U.S. troops in war zones.

Cyber Force debuts in October.

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Cyber Force Kickstarter campaign passes $75,000 goal

With more than a week to go in its Kickstarter campaign, Top Cow Productions has already surpassed its $75,000 goal for the revival of its early-’90s superhero series Cyber Force.

Announced early last month, the resurrection of the series coincides with the 20th anniversary of the Marc Silvestri comic that launched Top Cow Productions. The company hoped to raise enough money through the crowd-funding website to make the first five issues of the reimagined series available for free, both digitally and in print.

While the original comic followed a group of cybernetically enhanced mutants on the run from an international conglomerate, the Cyber Force in the new series — by Silvestri, Matt Hawkins and Khoi Pham — is described as “bio-cybernetic steampunk.”

“This new version of Cyber Force is the most exciting and awesome thing I’ve ever worked on,” Hawkins wrote this week in a Kickstarter update. “I can’t wait for all of you to see it. Thank you all and thanks for helping us spread the love of comics to the rest of the world.”

Donors were offered a number of incentives, ranging from Kickstarter-exclusive variant covers and signed issues to a thank-you phone call from Silvestri and a mentor session with Hawkins. The campaign ends Aug. 17; Cyber Force debuts in October.

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Cyber Force Kickstarter campaign launches, soars past $20,000

Not even a day into its Kickstarter campaign, Top Cow’s Cyber Force has already raised more than $20,000 of its $75,000 goal.

Announced two weeks ago, the resurrection of the series coincides with the 20th anniversary of the Marc Silvestri comic that launched Top Cow Productions. The company hopes to raise enough money through the crowd-funding website to make the first five issues of the reimagined series available for free, both digitally and in print.

“While most everybody uses Kickstarter to fund a project in order to build it and then sell it, we at Top Cow are going to use the funds to build Cyber Force and give it away — for free!” Silvestri told Hero Complex at the time of the announcement. “Plus we’re not talking just one issue but five full issues of the comic. And it won’t be free just digitally, but also as a full-color printed comic that will be available at any participating comic shop. So for people that want to read Cyber Force digitally — yes, including torrent sites — it’s free. And for anyone wanting to hold a traditional comic in their hands to read it — it’s still free.”

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Comics A.M. | Disney working to bring Marvel heroes to theme parks

Disney and Marvel

Theme parks | Disney CEO Bob Iger said the company has begun preliminary design work that will pave the way for Marvel superheroes to one day appear alongside familiar characters in Disney theme parks. Iger told shareholders attending the annual meeting Tuesday that the company has been working on some concepts, but hasn’t announced anything yet. Disney is currently developing attractions based on James Cameron’s Avatar film for its Animal Kingdom park in Orlando, Florida, which are expected to be ready in 2015. [Los Angeles Times]

Comic strips | Alan Gardner counts 57 newspapers that aren’t carrying this week’s Doonesbury comics, which address a Texas law requiring women requesting an abortion to submit to a transvaginal ultrasound. But according to Universal UClick, no papers have dropped Garry Trudeau’s strip. [The Daily Cartoonist]

Publishing | John Jackson Miller discusses the Rule of Eight, which holds that independent publishers start to falter once they put out more than eight titles per month, and goes into the nuances of the theory with its originator of the idea, Marc Patten. [The Comichron]

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