Following the announcement of the creators for their new Peanuts ongoing series, BOOM! Studios has announced variant covers for the first four issues available to comics retailers as order incentives. The covers feature Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus and Snoopy as they first appeared in the comic strip reproduced directly from Charles Schulz’ original panel art.
The first Peanuts miniseries, which BOOM! confirmed will be published as a series of miniseries a la Hellboy, will hit stores in January. Check out the other covers after the jump.
I know a lot of people who would likely love to win this costume. Heck, some of them even blog here at Robot 6. And really, what comic fan wouldn’t want to appear on a Star Trek comic cover saving the life of their favorite comics retailer?
Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, IDW and CBS have gotten together to give one comic fan and their retailer of choice the chance to do just that. They’ve kicked off the Star Trek “Be A Redshirt” contest, an essay contest where fans explain in 300 words or less why their retailer is the best. The grand-prize winner will appear on a limited edition variant cover of Star Trek #5, along with their retailer. The cover is limited to 300 copies; 100 will go to the fan, 100 to the retailer and 100 to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, who will use them to raise funds. The fan will also receive the original art for the cover.
A “redshirt,” for those who may not know, is a character who dies soon after being introduced. On the original Star Trek television show, they’d typically send an away team to a hostile planet consisting of several show regulars along with a no-name actor or actress in a red shirt. Chances were, the “redshirt” wouldn’t make it back to the ship or out of the episode alive.
As redshirts are famous for always catching the phaser in Star Trek episodes, and as comic fans can be so loyal in defending their local retailer, it’s the perfect contest,” said Dirk Wood, IDW’s director of retailer marketing. “And partnering with the CBLDF is perfect, because no one knows more about defending retailers than they do.”
To enter the “Be A Redshirt” contest, e-mail your explanation in 300 words or less about why your retailer is the best to IDW at contests@IDWPublishing.com with the subject: Save My Retailer.
As DC Comics, retailers and fans prepare for another round of New 52 titles next week, here’s a collection of the latest news and such …
• DC’s Bob Wayne told CBR’s Kiel Phegley that they planned to extend certain sales incentives to retailers through December, and this week DC released more details on what exactly that means — additional discounts for qualifying retailers on certain books, returnability on many titles and variant covers for several books, including the fourth issues of Justice League, Batman, Action Comics, Flash and Green Lantern.
• Wired’s GeekDad talks to Tony Bedard about the relaunched Blue Beetle series, which is due in shops next Wednesday. Bedard notes that the new series will be “less convoluted” than the last one in terms of Beetle’s origin, noting that this time around it isn’t tied to Infinite Crisis. He also notes Ted Kord won’t figure into the new series: “I loved the Ted Kord Blue Beetle as much as anyone. But he doesn’t figure into this new Blue Beetle series at all. My mission right now is to make 15 year-old El Paso high school student Jaime Reyes into the best character and the best Blue Beetle imaginable. And I have really good material to work with there. As anyone who read the last series or caught his appearances on Brave & The Bold will tell you, Jaime is a character teens and twenty-somethings can really latch onto. He has a terrific supporting cast and I’m building a ‘rogues gallery’ for him that will knock your socks off. None of this means that Ted Kord never existed. It’s just that before we go back and rehash the past, we are going to build a solid future for DC, and Jaime Reyes is the future.”
Marvel is heading north to Fan Expo Canada Aug. 25-28, and they’re bringing an exclusive Dale Eaglesham-drawn variant cover for Captain America #1. Cap, however, is nowhere to be seen; instead Wolverine and Alpha Flight sport Cap-like shields for the hometown crowd. The “variant” shields worn by Puck and Guardian are really nice touches.
Cue up the Steely Dan: Marvel has announced their intention to do it again by offering retailers a rare Ed McGuinness variant of Fear Itself #6 for every 50 covers they send in from certain Flashpoint tie-in titles from DC. Dubbed “Comics for Comics,” the divisive program is intended, according to Marvel, to offer relief to retailers who they say have been saddled with unsold product during the current economic climate. (This claim has met with some skepticism, Tom Brevoort’s protestations notwithstanding.)
Marvel’s done this before: Last year, they offered a J. Scott Campbell Deadpool variant of Siege #3 in exchange not just for unsold Blackest Night “power ring” tie-ins the from DC, but for unsold Siege and X-Men: Second Coming tie-ins as well. A copy of that comic [UPDATE: a signed, CGC-graded one, which I'm told makes a difference] recently sold on eBay for $625 (via ComicsAlliance commenter Tom). I’m curious as to whether Marvel will eventually make its own books eligible for this trade-in, too. (I’m also curious as to whether some other country will provide us with a functioning legislature in exchange for every 50 House GOP members we send them if we default on our debt, but I suppose that’s neither here nor there.)
The San Diego Comic-Con kicks off with a preview night on July 20, then runs July 21-24. If you are a comics creator or publisher, and you’re planning to bring something new to the con — a sketchbook, a print, a graphic novel debut, anything! — then we want to hear from you. Drop me an email (before Wednesday!) and let me know if you’ll have something cool on hand that attendees should know about. Feel free to send any artwork as well.
In addition to the portfolio of DC relaunch covers I mentioned this past week, Graphitti Designs will also sell a variant cover edition of Flashpoint #1 at their booth during the show.
The massive Comic-Con International runs July 21-24 in San Diego, but it’s never too early to start planning your shopping list. So we’ll be running a list of potential “wishlist” items you may want to check out at the show.
If you are a comics creator or publisher, and you’re planning to bring something new to the con — a sketchbook, a print, a graphic novel debut, etc. — then we want to hear from you. Drop me an email at email@example.com and let me know if you’ll have something cool on hand that attendees should know about. Feel free to send any artwork as well.
Aspen Comics sends word of two variant covers they’ll have at the show, for Executive Assistant Iris and Charismagic
Diamond Comics Distributors announced this week the exclusive comics and merchandise they’ll offer to retailers through their Previews catalog to sell on the floor of the San Diego Comic Con, which is a little more than a month away. Check them out:
DOLLHOUSE EPITAPHS #1 2011 SDCC VERSION
Exclusive original cover! Retailer Bonus: 1 in every 5 copy that is picked up at the SDCC will be signed by the creators Jed Whedon, Andrew Chambliss, & Maurissa Tancharoen! Overwhelmed by multiple personalities after mind-altering technology, Alpha must save mankind from itself as the viral technology turns everyone into murderous automatons. The fate of the world rests in the hands of Psychotic Alpha.
LIMITED TO 2,500 COPIES
Comic SRP: $3.50
Remember back when burglars conveniently identified themselves by wearing striped shirts and masks? Bone creator Jeff Smith does, and his variant cover for Superman #713 has a retro feel to it. The comic goes on sale on July 13 (7/13), which makes it easy to remember, and the regular cover is by John Cassaday.
Jeff also posted his pencil sketch for the cover at his Facebook page.
IDW is launching Godzilla: King of Monsters at the end of March, and it will be their biggest single-issue launch ever, according to editor-in-chief Chris Ryall, because of a promotion that got a lot bigger than they expected: They offered every retailer who ordered 500 or more copies of the comic a custom cover showing Godzilla crushing their comic store. They expected about a dozen retailers to take part, but they ended up with over 70, which makes for a pretty impressive print run.
Ryall credits IDW employee Chris Mowry, who works in the production department, with coming up with the idea, which must have brought a few headaches, as the art team had only two weeks to do all the custom covers. Still, the result is an instant collectible as well as a great talking point. IDW will also have special variant covers for Comic-Con featuring IDW employees fleeing the giant monster. With a well known property and the creative team of Eric Powell, Tracy March, and Phil Hester, the comic already had a lot going for it, but the custom covers put it over the top. For those who are curious, Rich Johnston has posted all the variant covers at Bleeding Cool.