PREVIEWS: "Spider-Gwen," "Chewbacca" & More Marvel Comics on Sale October 14, 2015
Whether you’re off to save the galaxy or simply heading to class (or, y’know, a convention), this Rocket Raccoon Backpack Buddy seems like the appropriate — and appropriately adorable — accessory.
Sold exclusively by ThinkGeek, the officially licensed backpack features plush head, arms, feet and tail, and a zipped compartment that measures 9.75 inches by 8 inches. Although it’s not intended to hold electronics, the website notes the backpack can fit an iPad2.
DJ and video artist Eclectic Method, who last year took on The Avengers, has now turned his attention to Guardians of the Galaxy, delivering a remix the should please fans of Rocket Raccoon, Groot and, of course, Redbone, whose “Come and Get Your Love” gets a contemporary makeover.
And, yes, “I am Groot” and “a bunch of a-holes” are sampled liberally.
As the former owner of a Chihuahua with an extensive wardrobe — stop looking at me like that; they get cold! — I’m more than a little envious of the Guardians of the Galaxy fan who had not only the skill but the gumption to create these tiny dog-sized Groot and Rocket Raccoon outfits.
They’re even endorsed by director James Gunn, who posted the photos on Facebook: “This photo just may be the peak of my existence.”
Seen in July at Comic-Con International, the licensed Star-Lord and Rocket Raccoon hoodies mimic the heroes’ costumes; the former comes complete with mask, and the latter with ears (but alas, no tail). They’re $79.99 each, but they might make a pretty good gift for those Guardians fans in your life. Or, y’know, treat yo self.
[Editor’s note: Each Sunday, Robot 6 contributors discuss the best in comics from the last seven days — from news and announcements to a great comic that came out to something cool creators or fans have done.]
Note: This post contains potential spoilers for Rocket Raccoon #5
Rocket Raccoon is one of several comics coming out of Marvel right now where they’ve paired the perfect creator — in this case Skottie Young — with the perfect character, and just let them go wild. (See also: Kaare Andrews on Iron Fist). So when you hear that an issue is going to have a fill-in artist, you have to wonder what kind of effect that’s going to have, if it’s really going to work or not. It all just depends on who they choose, right?
To celebrate New York Comic con, Marvel is once again offering access to its massive digital archive for a discounted price.
Through Oct. 16, you can buy a one-year membership to Marvel Unlimited Plus for $69, a savings of $30. Just go to the Marvel Unlimited website, and use the promo code “SAVE30″ at checkout.
Spider-Man had his own limited-edition cereal in the mid-’90s, complete with marshmallows shaped like the Spider-symbol, Peter Parker’s camera, Hobgoblin’s pumpkin bomb and, strangely, Kingpin. So why shouldn’t some of Marvel’s other popular characters get in on some of that sweet, sweet breakfast action?
Designers Crystal Fontan (aka Bamboota) and Elliott Fernandez seem to have wondered the same thing, as they’ve created (alas) imaginary cereal brands like Bifrosted Loki Charms, Tony’s Iron Bran, Cap’N Ameri-Crunch and, yes, Groot Loops (with limited-edition cocoa marshmallows of Groot and Rocket Raccoon).
Ahead of the release of Guardians of the Galaxy, Multiversity Comics brought together Rocket Raccoon- and Groot-themed art from an assortment of creators, with selected pieces to be auctioned to benefit writer Bill Mantlo, who suffered irreversible brain damage in 1992 after being struck by a car. Now that auction has gone live on eBay.
There are more than 30 pieces up for bid from such creators as Rafael Albuquerque, J. Bone, Jenny Frison, Sina Grace, Rebekah Isaacs, Tradd Moore, Declan Shalvey, Greg Smallwood and C.P. Wilson III.
Undoubtedly the breakout stars of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, Rocket Raccoon and Groot have emerged as one of the most loveable pairings in recent memory, a relationship immortalized not only on film but in pen and ink, in statues and even in life-sized LEGO. You might even say they’re on a course to become this generation’s Calvin and Hobbes.
Even if you’re not prepared to make that leap, veteran comics artist Mike S. Miller is, creating adorable mashups of Rocket and Groot and Bill Watterson’s beloved creations. He’ll have prints for sale at conventions, but you can order all three online for $50.
Rocket Raccoon certainly wasn’t an overnight success, but the character’s soaring popularity caught some off-guard — from his big-screen appeal in Guardians of the Galaxy to his new comic series topping the sales chart last month with more than 300,000 copies. With Rocket Raccoon now a mainstream hit, we can’t help but wonder whether he could save some of the funny-animal comics from DC and Marvel’s pasts from extinction.
Although the Rocket we see in the Guardians of the Galaxy film and comic series don’t fall easily into that funny animal genre, Skottie Young’s Rocket Raccoon relishes in it.
Events | The driver who plowed through the crowd last month at the annual SDCC ZombieWalk: San Diego, injuring a 64-year-old passersby, has given an interview providing his version of the event, saying he had turned off the engine to wait for the parade to pass when participants began surrounding his car. The situation quickly escalated, he says, when a spectator sat on the hood and hit the windshield, shattering it, and another person opened the back door. “I got scared. That’s when I plowed my car through the crowd,” says the unidentified 48-year-old. “I had to do this to save my family because of the crowd. I couldn’t tell if the parade was done.” He adds, “I felt awful about it. I just couldn’t believe that I actually hit the old lady.” [iDeafNews, Times of San Diego]
Legal | Japanese publisher Square Enix is voluntarily recalling all volumes Hi Score Girl and has suspended its digital distribution and sales following allegations the manga contains more than 100 unauthorized uses of characters owned by the game company SNK Playmore. However, the series will still continue to run in the monthly Big Gangan magazine, and a Square Enix spokesperson said the publisher isn’t admitting to the allegations. The publisher sent mixed signals on whether the anime adaptation in development will continue as planned. The manga also contains characters from games produced by CAPCOM, Sega and Bandai Namco, all of whom confirmed to IT Media that they had granted permission. [Anime News Network]
Start saving your money now, collectors. Hot Toys has unveiled its Rocket Raccoon and Groot action-figure set for Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s undeniably awesome (and I say that as someone who hasn’t collected action figures since childhood), but it’s also $360. I should point out, however, that you can set up a payment plan, which seems absolutely crazy for a toy, but what do I know.
The “movie-accurate” figures come with a weapon (for Rocket), an interchangeable angry expression face (for Groot) and interchangeable hands (for both). See more details and photos on the Sideshow Collectibles website. You can preorder now for shipping in March. Did I mention it’s $360?
As Marvel prepares for the August premiere of its biggest movie gamble to date, Guardians of the Galaxy, we’ve seen its publishing division reposition what once was an oddball, third-tier concept as a first-rate, if still oddball, franchise, first with the flagship title written by Brian Michael Bendis and next with Rocket Raccoon by Skottie Young.
As interesting as that transformation may be, I’m utterly fascinated by how Marvel’s parent company Disney has gone all in on merchandising an adaptation of a comic that, this time last year, no one outside fan circles had ever heard of. Granted, with the production budget for Guardians of the Galaxy in the neighborhood of $150 million (and probably nearly that much for marketing), the studio can’t afford to be timid.
Still, Disney Consumer Products has lined up more than 50 licensees, from Hasbro and LEGO to Mad Engine and Freeze, for what it views as Marvel’s Next Big Thing, at least as far as merchandise is concerned.
“It is always exciting to launch something new in consumer products, as we did with Iron Man in 2008,” Paul Gitter, senior vice president of licensing for Marvel at Disney Consumer Products, said in a statement. “By showcasing what is unique about this amazing new film we are able to develop a third Marvel franchise that can be at retail alongside our powerhouse franchises of The Avengers and Spider-Man. Continuing to diversify the Marvel offerings for consumers is a key strategy of ours.”
Mouse Guard creator David Petersen is no stranger to Rocket Raccoon, having drawn him a couple of years ago for the online Official Handbook to the Marvel Universe REDUXE Edition; he’ll do so again for the variant cover of Marvel’s Rocket Raccoon #1, arriving in July. However, he also tackled the fan-favorite character in a pair of commissions for Emerald City Comicon, to predictably fantastic results.
He shares his process for both pieces on his blog, alongside Mouse Guard and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles illustrations.