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I don’t if there’s ever been an movie that’s divided the voices in my social media feeds so thoroughly as Pacific Rim. Over the past couple of weeks, its been roughly a 50/50 split between “this is the best movie this summer” and “this is the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen.” I won’t write off a movie I won’t watch until it hits the rental market — this sounds like a great premise for a kid’s movie, and I’m kind of sick of seeing adult commentators depositing both too much expectation and critical acclaim on popcorn flicks aimed at young audiences.
No one can deny the visual flair Guillermo del Toro heaps upon his films, and he’s done exactly what any other comic book lover would have done when charged with making a monster movie. Ask any comic reader which artist designs the most original, scariest, freakiest creatures out there, and they’ll likely say Guy Davis. So del Toro did the howlingly obvious thing and hired him as a concept artist for Pacific Rim. As usual with big blockbuster movies of this type, there’s a glossy hardcover “Art of …” book out there accompanying its release (In this case, Pacific Rim: Men, Machines & Monsters by David S Cohen), and this is the place to go to see Davis’ work on the film.
It doesn’t look like there were as many comic-related announcements on Saturday at WonderCon as there were on Friday, but the second day of the con certainly brought some gems.
• IDW and DC announced that Mark Waid (Daredevil, Insufferable) and Paul Smith (Uncanny X-Men, Leave it to Chance) are teaming up for The Rocketeer/Spirit: Pulp Friction. “Not many writers have been lucky enough to write The Rocketeer or The Spirit,” Waid said in a press release, “so I feel like I’ve won the lottery. This is one of the most exciting-and scariest-assignments I’ve ever undertaken. Luckily, I’ve got Paul Smith to make me look good!” The first issue of the miniseries arrives in July.
The New York Comic Con officially kicked off this afternoon, with fans eager to get inside and publishers eager to begin releasing news into the wild. So let’s see if we can’t herd some of those announcements together. Here’s a round-up from today:
• DC Comics Co-Publisher and artist extraordinaire Jim Lee will team with Batman scribe Scott Snyder on a new Superman title next year, just in time for the Man of Steel’s return to the silver screen. “This will play along with the other Superman books in the sense that it’s in continuity, but we really wanted to carve out our own territory,” Snyder told CBR. “This really is sort of the biggest, most epic Superman story we could do together while having our feet planted firmly in continuity and making sure that everyone had enough room.”
DC also unveiled a Kia Optima that features a Batman design by Jim Lee.
• Marvel announced three more Season One graphic novels: Iron Man, written by Howard Chaykin with art by Gerard Parel; Thor by writer Matthew Sturges and artist Pepe Larraz; and Wolverine, written by the team of Ben Blacker and Ben Acker, with art by Salva Espin. Also, Cullen Bunn returns to Deadpool with Deadpool Killustrated, a miniseries that pits the Merc with a Mouth against Moby Dick, Sherlock Holmes, Beowulf, Don Quixote and more. Spoiler alert: he’s gonna kill them.
If you’re a fan of BPRD, you know that the above image is from that comic and not Guillermo del Toro’s giant-monster film, Pacific Rim. You also know that Guy Davis is pretty great at designing giant monsters.
What you may not know is that Davis is the concept artist for Pacific Rim. No concept art has been shared yet, so this completely slipped by most of us. The other thing you may not know is that he’s been working on the film for almost a year, but is now done with his part of it. The movie doesn’t come out until next year, but seeing it is suddenly even more exciting; something I didn’t think possible in a project involving del Toro and giant monsters.