DC Comics' July Highlights: "Batgirl," "Nightwing" and a "New Super-Man"
To help celebrate what would’ve been Jack Kirby’s 98th birthday, Shmaltz Brewery in Clifton Park, New York, will debut a limited-edition King Kirby Ale as part of an Aug. 28 fundraiser to benefit The Hero Initiative. A limited number of cases will be available for purchase at the event.
Approached by local artists about holding an event, the brewery went a step further and created the exclusive ale (available as both pale and dark), which features a label designed by Paul Harding. “I tried to capture Kirby from an angle that few have seen before,” the Clifton Park artist said in a statement, “in a way that people can actually look up to him and get a sense of his artistic power.”
To see what Josh and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.
For comics fans of a certain age, the launch of Dave Elliott and Garry Leach’s Atomeka Press imprint and its anthology title A1 was an epochal event. Coming along in 1989, A1 featured talent from the United Kingdom, the United States and mainland Europe. As comics had both grown and grown up so much during the 1980s, the bringing together of all these strands seemed important, timely and inevitable. Here was a comic where you could find the best creators from 2000AD, Warrior and Deadline together with artists from the boom in the U.S. indie-comics market, alongside Moebius or Enki Bilal, then at the height of their powers.
The history of Atomeka’s rise and fall mirrored the explosion and implosion of the entire industry (there’s a great retrospective interview with Dave on the matter here), and the imprint has made faltering steps back into the limelight since 2004. Its return has seemed all the more concrete since the publication of Heavy Metal #259, which Dave guest-edited (a PDF sample is available here), and showcased the kind of material a re-energized A1 could feature. Nestled beside established talent such as Alex Horley, Andy Kuhn, Tom Raney and Toby Cypress was a crop of new talent Elliott has been nurturing, such as the Indonesian superstar-in-the-making Barnaby Bagenda, possessor of a style somewhere between Leinil Yu and Fiona Staples. His presence alone would make me hopeful for the returning anthology.
With everyone focused on who will follow Gail Simone on Batgirl and the departure of Scott Snyder and Yanick Paquette from Swamp Thing, we overlooked perhaps the biggest news to arise from DC Comics’ solicitations for March: that Captain Carrot will make his New 52 debut in Threshold #3, by Keith Giffen and Tom Raney. Only now he’s re-imagined as Captain K’Rot.
Created by Roy Thomas and Scott Shaw, the anthropomorphic rabbit was introduced in 1982’s New Teen Titans #16. A series titled Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew! launched months later and continued for 20 fun-tabulous issues.
Giffen confirmed to Comic Book Resources that Captain K’Rot is indeed his take on Captain Carrot. Asked whether he was a longtime fan of the original series, Giffen quipped, “There was a series?” Ever the joker. He quickly added, “Every book needs a borderline psychotic, booze swilling, whore-mongering rabbit. I mean, c’mon!”
The comics veteran teased last month in a CBR interview about Threshold that the series’ “breakaway” star would make his debut in the second issue. This will be the one fans start buying the book,” he promised.
Safe bet that Captain K’Rot will be revealed in the final page or panel of the second issue, leading to his proper introduction in Threshold #3.
Having worked on comics like Legion of Super-Heroes and Marvel’s Annihilation event, among many others, Keith Giffen knows cosmic stories. He’ll get to flex those star-spanning muscles once again with a new DC Comics series called Threshold.
The comic will feature two stories — the first, drawn by Tom Raney and titled “The Hunted,” will feature the Omega Men, Blue Beetle, Star Hawkins, the original Starfire, Space Ranger,Space Cabbie and a new Green Lantern named Jediah Caul. It spins out of the Giffen-written Green Lantern: New Guardians Annual #1, and Giffen said it was like “doing a science fiction version of Battle Royale and giving everyone a gun.”
“… these characters and concepts will bump up against the New Guardians characters in the annual,” Giffen told Newsarama’s Vaneta Rogers. “So it’s a New Guardians story, but it will introduce readers to this concept. And then it spins out of the annual and the last issue of Blue Beetle. We’re trying to make Threshold a success and get as many eyes on this new ongoing series as possible.”
Welcome to the turkey hangover edition of What Are You Reading?, your weekly look into the reading lists of the Robot 6 crew. Our special guest today is Andy Hirsch, creator of Varmints and artist of The Royal Historian of Oz.
To see what Andy and the Robot 6 crew have been reading lately, click below.
Hello and welcome to What Are You Reading? This week our special guest is Ross Campbell, creator of Shadoweyes and its recent sequel, Shadoweyes in Love, as well as Wet Moon, Water Baby, The Abandoned and “Refuse,” a short story in the recent Strange Adventures anthology from Vertigo.
To see what Ross and the Robot 6 crew have been reading lately, click below.
The average comic is around 21 to 24 pages of story. Sometimes more, sometimes less, but in all, we can agree that there’s some breathing room in comparison to your standard Sunday comic strip. In those 21 to 24 pages, there is space to tell a story or, in our current state of affairs, part of one. Despite the shaken fists to the sky and grumbles from the masses, there are comic book writers who write for the trade paperback, making each issue a piece of a much larger puzzle. Your monthly comic would then hold a clue or a twist that would add to the readers’ understanding of the over-arcing plot, causing them to come back for more in search of the final resolution.
This creates an audience. Wondering what comes next or “whodunnit” keeps readers turning pages and the writer with some steady income as they bring the story to life in their allotted time and space once a month. It’s hard work these days to keep the public’s attention, so taking a story of significant impact and drawing it out over a few months has a beneficial side if you’re thinking fiscally. This practice can leave a lot of people in the cold, especially those who come in at the middle of the story rather than its start. Let’s say someone wanted to pick up an issue of Amazing Spider-Man, just to see where Peter Parker had gotten himself to lately. Considering he’s working in a high-tech science lab rather than the life of the common Joe might be a little confusing for some, but add to that his side jobs with the Avengers or, more importantly, the Future Foundation, and you have a lot of explaining to do about why he took those jobs and what the heck a Future Foundation is.
To help usher in the new reader and perhaps give long-term readers a little space between major arcs, Marvel released Point One issues: single issues of story to explain a little about the character and where he’s at. Something that began and ended within that book. For the Invincible Iron Man, it was a character study about who Tony Stark was then and who he is now. For Wolverine, it was a well-meant birthday party with his supporting cast and a dust up with some bad guys. Some times more, some times less, these Point One issues were created to communicate the concept of the book, storyline or even just the character in 21 to 24 pages.
But! What if I told you that you (yes you!) could introduce someone to a book, storyline and character in just three panels! Sound amazing? Let me show you how!
(WARNING: this Fifth Color will contain spoilers for Avenges Academy #12. Three panels worth to be exact. If you haven’t read it yet then run, don’t walk, to you local comic shop and ask for it by name! You could also take a car if it’s a long walk.)
Hello and welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly round-up of … well, what we’ve been reading lately.
Today our special guest is the legendary Gilbert Hernandez. Known best as the co-creator of Love & Rockets, his other works include Sloth, The Troublemakers, Chance in Hell and Yeah! with Peter Bagge (which is being collected by Fantagraphics)
To see what Gilbert and the Robot 6 crew have been reading lately, click below.