New York Comic Con
Given Loki’s current popularity, both on the big screen and in his pint-sized form in Young Avengers, it was only a matter of time before Marvel’s god of mischief earned his own comic.
The publisher revealed during this afternoon’s “All-New Marvel Now” panel at New York Comic Con that writer Al Ewing and artist Lee Garbett are teaming up for Loki: Agent of Asgard, a new ongoing series in which the now grown-up trickster — now in the service of the All-Mother — is made official defender of the home of the gods.
Ewing explained to Marvel.com that Loki will be sent on missions “that are relevant to the future security of Asgard. For example, in Issue 2, Loki’s given the job of tracking down Lorelei, the Enchantress’ younger sister, who’s been out in the realm of Midgard getting up to mischief. Whether Loki and Lorelei’s relationship mirrors that of their older siblings — well, you’ll have to pick up the book to find out.”
Look for more details Saturday in Comic Book Resource’s interview with Ewing.
Amid a flurry of announcements at New York Comic Con, comiXology revealed it has signed a digital-distribution deal with Ape Entertainment, publisher of titles ranging from Poison Elves to Kung Fu Panda to Temple Run.
The news quickly follows announcements of an expanded deal with DC Comics to carry select collections and the addition of Avatar Press, and Viz Media Europe and its French subsidiary Kazé. ComiXology also released some of the findings from its readership survey, which indicated that 20 percent of its readers are women (up from just 5 percent six years ago).
To kick off the new agreement, the following Ape comics have debuted on the digital-comics platform:
We’re living in a “Lil’ Golden Age,” as publishers have discovered the genius of comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani.
After showing off their trademark style on the DC heroes in comics like Tiny Titans and Superman Family Adventures, the duo has been tapped to create fun new versions of Hellboy and Battlestar Galactica. The collaborators also have their own line of original characters, following a successful Kickstarter project.
The kid-friendly designs they’ve applied to comics also work pretty well as plush toys, something Dark Horse is jumping all over it introduces plush versions of Itty Bitty Hellboy and Abe Sapien.
No word yet on when you’ll be able to cuddle with Mike Mignola’s signature creations, but Tomopop can show you what they’ll look like.
As promised last week with the debut of a not-so-mysterious teaser video, Dark Horse confirmed this morning at New York Comic Con that it will partner with game developer CD Projekt RED for a comic series based on The Witcher, with Paul Tobin on board as writer.
Based on the bestselling fantasy novels and short stories by Andrzej Sapkowski, the hack-and-slash role-playing game follows Geralt, one of the few remaining “witchers,” traveling monster hunters for hire.
On the heels of the debut this week of Battling Boy, Paul Pope’s much-anticipated (and already widely praised) all-ages graphic novel, First Second Books has announced a prequel, The Rise of Aurora West.
Battling Boy centers on on the son of a war god who’s sent by his father to rid the Monstropolis of monsters after Haggard West, the previous protector of the continent-sized city, is assassinated (another prequel, the one-shot The Death of Haggard West, was released in July).
Co-written by Pope and J.T. Petty and drawn by David Rubin, Wired.com reports The Rise of Aurora West uncovers the backstory of its title character, Battling Boy’s ally and the daughter of Haggard West. The prequel will arrive in July 2014, ahead of Pope’s sequel to Battling Boy.
These days, every city worth its salt has a pop culture-themed art gallery, running exhibitions filled with art inspired by comics, games, television and film. New York City has one of the best, Brooklyn’s Bottleneck Gallery. This is the first year it has a presence at New York Comic Con (booth #2167), where the gallery is selling new and exclusive prints by 21 artists, hosting signings by artists and giving away free candy. Those Big Slice lollipops may well be the deal-maker.
The signing schedule includes: Timothy Pittides, Friday from noon to 12:30 p.m.; Marko Manev, Friday and Saturday from 2 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.; Randy Ortiz, Friday from 3 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.; and Bruce Yan, Saturday from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Check out plenty of examples of the comic-influenced work Bottleneck will be selling: Continue Reading »
Nearly a year ago we wrote about Vandroid, Tommy Lee Edwards’ live-action tribute to ’80s action films, shot over just five days near the artist’s home in North Carolina. Dubbed by Edwards as merely the first of many planned live-action projects, the short was to be accompanied by a soundtrack and a comic book — and now the latter has found a home.
Dark Horse has announced the Feb. 29 debut of Vandroid, a miniseries written by Edwards and Noah Smith, with art by Dan McDaid and colors by Jordie Bellaire. Edwards will provide the covers.
Here’s the solicitation for the first issue of the project, described by the publisher as “epic 80’s Sci-Fi action, the likes of which you’ve never seen”:
Before Baltimore Comic-Con, I had the chance to talk with Usagi Yojimbo creator Stan Sakai, and he mentioned that not only was he working on a new Nilson Groundthumper story for Dark Horse Presents, but also that the publisher would release a collection next year of previous stories featuring the swordsrabbit and his pal Hermy.
According to ComicsAlliance, The Adventures of Nilson Groundthumper and Hermy will arrive March 19. The 104-page hardcover will include all of the previously published material featuring the duo from the late 1970s/early 1980s. It’ll also include extra art and new coloring by Tom Luth.
Nilson Groundthumper and Hermy preceded Usagi by a year or two, and like Usagi, Nilson is a sword-wielding rabbit — although of the medieval adventurer sort, vs. a samurai. Their stories take place in a sword-and-sorcery setting (some of which feature a wizard named Sénogara, in honor of one of Sakai’s Groo-vy collaborators on another book) and originally appeared in various anthologies like Critters and Albedo. The stories were quite funny, so it’ll be fun to see them introduced to a new generation — and to see the new story Sakai is working on for DHP.
Out of all of the comiXology announcements made in the past few days — and there have been few — this one stands to make the biggest impact: Female readership has increased dramatically since the digital-comics platform launched in 2007.
TechHive reports that six years ago, women represented less than 5 percent of comiXology users; now that figure has rocketed to 20 percent. What’s more, the company knows exactly who this reader is: “She’s 17-26 years old, college-educated, lives in the suburbs, and is new to comics. She prefers Tumblr to Reddit. She may have never even picked up a print comic.”
(Perhaps then it’s no coincidence that comiXology abandoned its long-running blog, and launched a very active one in July on Tumblr.)
Although this was mentioned Tuesday in the rundown of Oni Press’ New York Comic Con exclusives and debuts, the publisher has now released full details, and a larger image, for The Sixth Gun, Vol. 1: Gunslinger Edition.
Debuting this week at the convention, the gorgeously designed collection of the supernatural Western by Cullen Bunn, Brian Hurtt and Bill Crabtree packages the first 11 issues with a new dust jacket and cover … inside a coffin slipcase. It also comes with three art prints and tip-in print signed by the creative team. It’s priced at $120, but, hey, the holidays are right around the corner — treat yo self.
There is a catch, though: The set is limited to just 1,000 copies, and only 40 will be sold at the convention. The remainder will be available exclusively on OniPress.com beginning Dec. 4. So you may want to get to the Oni Press booth (#1844). Bunn and Hurtt will be there signing Friday and Saturday from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
“I’ve never read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, although I certainly know what that is. And what I love about that concept is as much as it’s a zombie story, it’s also Pride and Prejudice. It’s the exact same thing with Afterlife: As much as this is a hardcore horror zombie book, it’s still an Archie book. Who is Archie going to take to the Halloween dance? Betty or Veronica? Why does the zombie apocalypse start? Because Sabrina the Teenaged Witch messed up a spell, which she is constantly doing in the comic book. Who but Reggie would be the guy who runs over Hot Dog? If anybody has a dark secret like ‘I killed Hot Dog!’ it’s going to be Reggie Mantle.”
– writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, talking with Vulture about Afterlife With Archie, which debuts today. Deadline also has the exclusive New York Comic Con trailer for the series, which is illustrated by Francesco Francavilla
Conventions are always a great place to see creators and celebrities, but it’s rare that you’re given the opportunity to meet a Muppet. At New York Comic Con, Cookie Monster — and his “assistant” David Rudman — will appear Saturday from 11 a.m. until noon and from 2 p.m. until 3 p.m. at the WeLoveFine booth (#1836), where you can also buy an exclusive NYCC steampunk Cookie Monster shirt.
Cookie Monster isn’t the only special guest appearing at their booth:
Just ahead of New York Comic Con, Dark Horse has announced Mandala, an upcoming sci-fi graphic novel by Stuart Moore and Bruce Zick. The first chapter is available beginning today on Dark Horse Digital for $2.99.
In Mandala, humanity is secretly enslaved by a mind-control cage galled the GRID, and it’s up to Mike Morningstar and his spiritual special-ops unit The Thirteen to alter time and take down the GRID before it’s too late.
“Mandala is probably the biggest-scale epic I’ve ever worked on: a saga of original sin and possible redemption that spans millennia and crosses the timelines” Moore said in a statement. “At its core, it’s the story of Michael Morningstar, a guy who — like many of us — has to find his way in a world he doesn’t quite understand. The characters’ alliances shift constantly, along with the timelines.”
The creators will be signing throughout New York Comic Con at the Dark Horse booth (#1175).
Conventions | A even bigger obstacle than the San Diego Chargers to the proposed $520 million expansion of the San Diego Convention Center could be the California Coastal Commission, which must approve the project before it can proceed (the stage agency has regulatory oversight of land use and public access to the California coastal zone). The commission’s 11 members are meeting today through Friday in Mission Valley, where they’re expected to consider staff objections about reduced access to the bay; a bridge, estimated to cost about $42 million, from the foot of Fourth Avenue in the Gaslamp Quarter has been floated as a solution. A public hearing is being held Thursday. The expansion of the convention center is viewed as critical to keeping Comic-Con International in the city past 2015. [U-T San Diego]
ComiXology and Avatar Press announced they’ve struck an exclusive digital distribution agreement covering “English language single issues.” And like clockwork, this morning comiXology went live with about 50 Avatar titles, including Extinction Parade, Uber, Black Summer and God is Dead.
Avatar joins, well, nearly every other comic publisher out there, from DC Comics to Image to Udon to Scholastic’s Graphix line, on the digital distributor’s platform. The press release notes that at least 20 of Avatar’s titles are “too extreme for mobile” and will only be available via the comiXology website. Earlier this year comiXology made headlines when it removed many comics from its app to “comply with the Apple App Store guidelines regarding adult or inappropriate content.” So comics liked the always-controversial Crossed and Neonomicon can only be bought on comiXology.com.
Check out the full release, which has a full list of Avatar titles that are now available, below.