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NYCC | Marvel expands Season One with Thor, Iron Man, Wolverine

Today at New York Comic Con,  Marvel announced it’s expanding its Season One line with three graphic novels recounting the early days Iron Man, Thor and Wolverine. They join a lineup that already includes volumes devoted to the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, the Avengers, the X-Men, Daredevil, the Hulk, Ant-Man and Doctor Strange.

Launched in February, Season One features current creators retelling classic superhero tales. For instance, with Wolverine: Season One writers Ben Blacker and Ben Acker (Supernatural, The Thrilling Adventure Hour) and artist Salva Espin take Logan back to key moments in the hirsute mutant’s storied history.

“We get to tell the most iconic ‘early days’ story Wolverine has: his encounter with Wendigo and The Hulk,” Acker told “This story is about the first time Logan put on his classic yellow and black suit and got the code name Wolverine.”

Thor: Season One is written by Matthew Sturges and illustrated by Pepe Larraz, while Iron Man: Season One pairs Howard Chaykin with artist Gerard Parel.

Check out previews from the three books, and keep following Robot 6 and Comic Book Resources for more New York Comic Con news.

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Amanda Visell crafts wood idols of Wonder Woman, Thor and more

Amanda Visell has created an amazing series of one-of-a-kind hand-painted wood idols featuring characters ranging from Wonder Woman and Thor to Lion-O and … Michael Jackson from Thriller. Each comes with its own equally amazing hand-painted wood box.

While some of the idols already have been sold, several of them are still available. For $800 each. If I had that kind of extra cash, I’d buy that Thor figure in a heartbeat. Alas, I do not. You can see that figure, as well as Batman and Superman, below. The full lineup (including more angles of each idol) can be found on Visell’s website.

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Wish This Was Real | Brian Kesinger’s Steampunk Avengers

There have been other steampunk Avengers, but with the Hulk in suspenders and a bowler? I’d read a comic just about him.

Anyway, Brian Kesinger is awesome and you should check out his blog and DeviantArt page. He also does steampunk other things, like Transformers, G.I. Joe, and Star Wars. But if steampunk’s not your thing, his Hip Hop Boba Fett and Pooh vs. Voldemort are cool, too. I posted bunch of my favorites below.

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What Are You Reading? with Alberto Jiménez Alburquerque

Hello and welcome to What Are You Reading? Our guest this week is Spanish artist Alberto Jiménez Alburquerque, who drew the comic Elle for Soleil. He’s also working on a story for the upcoming Skullkickers #18 with J. Torres.

To see what Alberto and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.

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Assemble your own papercraft Avengers

Most papercraft dolls, as cool as they are, are stumpy little blocky deals, but My Paper Heroes has an Avengers set that smashes the old look. The link will lead you to downloadable PDFs with everything you need, including a variant hairstyle for Black Widow’s Iron Man 2 look, a helmet for Captain America and more. Unlike Widow’s feelings about giant, flying leviathans, I can totally see how that’s a party.

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Greatest Comic of All Time | Thor #160

Welcome to Greatest Comic of All Time, a new weekly column spotlighting great comic books that don’t appear on the bestseller charts or canon lists or big-box bookstore shelves.  They are the property of the back issue bins and thrift store crates and swap meet hawkers of America, living like the comics medium itself in the unremembered crags and pockets of publishing history.  It is a testament to the form’s strength that overlooked and forgotten work as potent as the celebrated masterpieces exists, and it is a testament to comics’ true devotees that these diamonds still emerge from the rough to shine once more for those who seek them out.

Thor #160, composed and illustrated by Jack Kirby, inked by Vince Colletta, dialogued by Stan Lee.  Cover-dated January 1969.  Published by Marvel Comics/Perfect Film & Chemical Corporation.

How acquired:  Thrown in on top of a box of late-’80s/early ’90s superhero comics given to me by a guy who worked at an iron furnace company whose building I used to hang around. “This one’s actually good,” is the quote I remember.

Best single drawing:

Full effect.

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Mondo debuts Iron Man and Thor posters for Avengers series

Iron Man, by Kevin Tong

Mondo, Alamo Drafthouse’s collectible art boutique, continues its rollout of limited-edition prints in honor of Marvel’s The Avengers with posters of Iron Man, by Kevin Tong, and Thor, by Martin Ansin. They go on sale Friday for $45 each; follow Mondo’s Twitter account for specific times.

These latest prints join those previously released for Black Widow, Hawkeye, Captain America and the Hulk. There’s a seventh poster that should be revealed sometime very soon.

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C2E2 2012 | Sunday Photodiary

Sunday was a great day. It started off awesomely with a marriage proposal. A young man named Matthew had hired my friend Grant to draw a picture of Buffy the Vampire Slayer for his girlfriend, Lisa, a Buffy fan. When they picked up the commission, Lisa read the word balloons, “Hi, Lisa. Matthew tells me he loves you very much and he has a very important question to ask…”

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Thor on a unicorn calling down a rainbow

Thor on a unicorn calling down a rainbow

In an officially licensed Marvel product, no less. Based on the rules and card designs found on Marvel Super Hero Squad Online’s player vs. player card game, Upper Deck has partnered with Marvel and Gazillion Entertainment for a Super Hero Squad trading card game.

The blog Squad Cards has been showing off some of the new cards, which allow you to toss a fastball special, have She-Hulk give your opponent a group hug or call upon “Odin’s rainbow pony,” as seen above. Looks like fun!

You, too, can smell like the Hulk with The Avengers-themed cologne

As the licensing machine revs up for the May 4 premiere of The Avengers, fragrance company JADS International — the company behind such brands as Sulu Pour Homme, Slave Leia Perfume and Shirtless Kirk Cologne — has rolled out scents inspired by Captain America, Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk, Thor, Nick Fury and even Loki. Sorry, Hawkeye, you’re out of luck.

The Avengers Cologne Set boasts “four unique fragrances”: PATRIOT, Mark VII, SMASH! and Worthy; you can probably piece together which name goes with which hero. Loki, meanwhile, gets Mischief Cologne (“Made to Rule”), and Fury has Initiative Cologne (“Activate the Initiative”).

Check out the details below, or on the JADS website.

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Talking Comics with Tim | Thomas Scioli

American Barbarian

Back in 2010, when Thomas Scioli started bolstering his online presence and entered the realm of webcomics with American Barbarian, I was curious to see how things would play out (as may or may not have been obvious in my June 2010 interview of him). I’ll be honest and admit that now, more than a year later (and with far more of the project online to read), American Barbarian far exceeds what I expected. As much as I have always enjoyed and respected his Kirby-influenced approach to visual storytelling, after reading this double post Apocalyptic tale, I am far more impressed with Scioli’s funky ear for dialogue. It’s like reading a 1970s comic written by a minimalist version of David Mamet. Doubting my quirky endorsement of the work? Then realize AdHouse is collecting the webcomic for a 256-page/6 ” x 9 ” /hardcover release early this year. If you don’t trust my tastes, then you should definitely trust AdHouse publisher Chris Pitzer. To mark the upcoming release, Scioli and I did another of our quick email interviews. Before diving into the interview, let me take a second to agree with JK Parkin’s sentiment in this post, back in June, that DC Comics should have considered Scioli for one of the New 52 titles that it launched back in September. So I was surprised to learn (as you can read in this interview) that DC did not contact Scioli when assembling the creative team for the new OMAC title. As I edited this interview I realized it was hard to find my favorite part of our discussion, but it may be the revelation that the look for Two-Tank Omen came to Scioli in a dream. A close second was learning a bit about his next webcomic, Final Frontier. Feel free to chime in with your favorite part of this interview and/or Scioli’s work in the comments section, please.

Tim O’Shea: As an independent creator, the job of marketing your work falls to you. Do you think over the years, you have gotten more comfortable marketing yourself? On a related note, how did you decide upon doing this one minute trailer for American Barbarian?

Thomas Scioli: Even the largest comics publishers don’t seem to have a budget for promotion, so I’d say any creator, independent or mainstream, can benefit from doing their own promotion. It’s something that I’ve never been comfortable with, but do out of necessity. I think I have gotten better about it, because in the beginning, it would give me crippling anxiety, now it’s just mild trepidation. The idea for doing a trailer came from having seen other people do it. AdHouse’s own Afrodisiac trailer and [Top Shelf's] Infinite Kung-Fu [trailer] are two that made an impression on me when they made the rounds. It got me excited about those two works, so I wanted to do the same. I’d been dabbling with animation, back when I started AmBarb so it was a natural outgrowth of that, too. Once you start doing a webcomic it isn’t long before you realize, hey, why not just do a cartoon?

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What Are You Reading? with Comic Book Resources

Officer Downe

Hello and welcome to a special birthday bash edition of our weekly “What Are You Reading” feature. Typically the Robot 6 crew talks about what books we’ve read recently, but since it’s our anniversary, we thought we’d invite all our friends and colleagues from Comic Book Resources and Comics Should Be Good! to join in the fun.

To see what everyone has been reading, click below …

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Get hammered with Mjolnir

Thor’s mythic warhammer Mjolnir can level mountains, emit blasts of mystical energy and even detect illusions. But for those swingin’ parties at Avengers mansion, only those who are thirsty shall possess its mighty power.

Early next year Diamond Select Toys will roll out a series of Marvel-based bottle openers, beginning with — you guessed it! — Thor’s hammer, complete with its legendary inscription: “Whosoever holds this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of Thor.”

With it, you’ll be the hit of every party. Well, at least those that don’t feature twist-off caps — or Loki.

The Fifth Color | A look at what could have been from the Thor DVD

Thor didn’t come with a tiny hammer and I, my friends, am sorely disappointed.

I’ve been pretty excited for this movie to come out on DVD since I saw it back in May. Despite Captain America: the First Avenger‘s incredible achievement in crediting Marvel Studios as a real-live movie-making studio rather than a tentative wing of a funnybook publishing arm, I still like Thor better. I love the tone of the film, I love the music and the actors, I love the costumes and the pageantry, and I wanted to take it all home from the moment I walked out of the theater.

A lot of movies I adore come out with special packaging for their big release, and chain and online stores will often stock a limited thingamajig with your DVD sale. Iron Man came in a metal case when you bought it from FYE, and when my friend bought the first “Bayocalypse” Transformers movie, there was a bevy of different boxes, statuettes and editions he could choose from. It’s a nice bonus to being a nerd sometimes: we get cool stuff for liking cool stuff.

When I went to FYE this Tuesday to grab myself a copy of Thor, we chatted about this as I bought my very plain edition of the Thor movie. No tiny hammer. No statuette. The box wasn’t even shaped like his head. The only extras were a digital copy (that refuse to ever work when I download them), some Avengers hype, an awesome little short on Agent Coulson (see it here!) and some interesting featurettes on how this movie was made. All of them seemed very short but were more than simply accolades for all the people working on the film. I actually feel like I learned something about the production’s process, which brings me to the best part of the DVD that isn’t the movie, the deleted scenes.

In the featurettes, they mention that the director Kenneth Branaugh would take a lot of “one more” shots, giving the actors new and interesting directions as they went along. Some of these off-the-cuff innovations weighted Thor’s more dramatic moments stunningly, but that got me thinking about the choices that didn’t make it into the movie. What did they want to do before they shot this scene this way? Going through the deleted scenes, you could almost use them as puzzle pieces, trading one exchange out for another to make a slightly different movie for a different audience.

Join me, won’t you, as I take a look at these deleted scenes from Thor and try to figure out what could have been.

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What Are You Reading? with Bully, the little stuffed bull

Bully enjoys Astronaut Academy

Hello and welcome once again to What Are You Reading? This week it is our distinct pleasure to welcome our very  special guest Bully, the little stuffed bull, who blogs about all sorts of comics with the help of his friend, John DiBello.

To see what Bully and the rest of the Robot 6 crew have been reading lately, click on the link below.

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