A great artist can make readers stand up at attention, while a fast artist can make editors’ lives a lot easier. Luckily for fans and publishers alike, Declan Shalvey is both.
Taking the artistic reins on Deadpool in August, Shalvey is in the middle of an epic upward-bound trajectory in comics, drawing books for Marvel and Dark Horse. His career began with a 28 Days Later comic for BOOM! Studios, but fans didn’t really take notice of his work until he began alternating arcs of Thunderbolts with Kev Walker.
Despite its frantic biweekly shipping schedule, Thunderbolts was an ideal showcase for Shalvey’s gritty, textured illustrations (with a bounce reminiscent of emotive newspaper cartoonists). After working on that title, and its successor Dark Avengers, for two years, the Irish artist was tapped to follow after Tony Moore on Venom. But stand back: Shalvey isn’t just a superhero artist. While tackling those comics for Marvel, he also illustrated graphic novel adaptations of Frankenstein and Sweeney Todd for European publishers, and arcs of Vertigo’s Northlanders and Dark Horse’s Conan the Barbarian.
Hello and welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at all the comics and other stuff we’ve been reading lately. Our special guests today are Brendan Tobin and Pedro Delgado, who run the March MODOK Madness site. And with this being March, the madness is in full swing, so head over there to check out a lot of fun art featuring everyone’s favorite big-headed villain.
To see what Brendan, Pedro and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.
Comic books have long cast a spotlight on the school lives, and all the associated trials and tribulations, of superheroes, from Spider-Man and the X-Men to Blue Beetle and Amethyst. But what about the supervillains? Judging from the series of yearbook portraits by
Francesca J. Hause, they haven’t had it any easier than the heroes.
It turns out Green Gobin was a stoner (no surprise there), Bane was no stranger to wedgies, and Loki was an orthodontic headgear-wearing D&D player. Venom seemed to do OK, though. Check out those, plus a fashion-victim Two-Face, below.
Legal | Writer Scott Henry details the lengthy attempt to prosecute Dragon*Con co-founder Ed Kramer on charges of child molestation. The case began in 2000 and has yet to go to trial. [Atlanta Magazine]
Publishing | Bandai Entertainment will discontinue sales of manga, novels and anime, with the final shipment of manga going out at the end of October. The company, a subsidiary of Namco Bandai Entertainment, had stopped publishing new work in January and was focusing on sales of its existing properties. [Anime News Network]
If you thought Comic-Con International was the be-all, end-all showcase for the best in cosplay then you’re missing out. Costume designer and photographer Adam Jay has stepped it up a notch, creating a liquid-latex rendition of erstwhile Spider-Man villain Venom with the help of model Freddie Nova.
Eddie Brock she’s not: Nova really gives the Venom costume a new life in her looks and her performance — really living up to the animalistic nature of the symbiote. As it turns out, Nova has done a number of superhero cosplays, as showcased in her Facebook gallery.
Check out more photos below, and visit Jay’s website to see the full photo set.
Let’s not mince words, the online presence of Tom Brevoort has provided hours of great reading for Robot 6 readers. Given his constant and unflagging willingness to interact with consumers via social media, Brevoort is a quote machine (His Twitter bio? “A man constantly on the verge of saying something stupid–for your entertainment!?”). There’s always a directness (some would say bluntness) to his manner online–making him the ideal subject for an interview. Last year saw Marvel promote Brevoort to senior vice president for publishing. 2011 was a year of some major successes for Marvel, as well as a year where some hard business decisions were made. In this interview, conducted in mid-December via email, I tried to cover a great deal of ground (we even briefly discuss DC’s New 52 success)–and Brevoort did not hold back on any of his answers. For that, I am extremely grateful. Like any high profile comics executive, Brevoort has his fans and his critics (and many in between), but I like to think this exchange offers some perspectives everyone can enjoy.
Tim O’Shea: Whether it’s in your job description or not, fan outreach via social media is definitely part of your job–clearly by your own choice. What benefit or enjoyment do you get from interacting with the fans/consumers?
Tom Brevoort: I’m not sure that I get a particular benefit, except maybe just being the center of attention for a few minutes—maybe everything I do is motivated by ego! I’m a whore for the spotlight! But I started doing this kind of outreach back in the formative days of internet fandom, largely because I like the idea of internet fandom. I know that, if the internet had existed when I was a young comic book reader, I’d have been on those message boards and in those chat rooms all the time, obsessively—just like a certain portion of the audience today. So I like the idea of giving back, of being accessible enough that anybody who has a question or a concern knows where to find me, or at least to find somebody with an insider’s track who might have the background and knowledge to speak to their point. In a very real way, it’s all an outgrowth of what Stan Lee did in his letters pages and Bullpen pages. Joe Q, I think, was really the first person to perfect that approach for the internet age. As EIC he was incredibly available to the audience in a myriad of ways. It’s a philosophy that’s very much woven into our DNA at Marvel. And for the most part, our fans are interesting, vibrant, cool people, especially when you meet them in person.
Hello and welcome to What Are You Reading? Today our special guest is Fantagraphics’ Marketing Director Mike Baehr, who runs their indispensable company blog, Flog!, among other duties.
To see what Mike and the Robot 6 crew have been reading, click below.
To see what Akira the Don and the Robot 6 crew are reading, click below.
Welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at the comics and other stuff we’ve been enjoying lately. Our special guests this week are Aaron Alexovich (Invader Zim, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Serenity Rose, Fables) and Drew Rausch (Sullengrey, The Dark Goodbye, Cthulhu Tales), the creative team behind the horror/comedy comic Eldritch!
To see what Aaron, Drew and the Robot 6 crew are reading, click below …
Venom, Marvel’s salivating alien symbiote, will lay claim to a new ongoing series, and a new host, in March, the publisher announced this morning.
The title, which reunites Fear Agent and Punisher collaborators Rick Remender and Tony Moore, finds the symbiote bonding to a familiar figure — Marvel won’t say who — and working as an operative for the U.S. government.
Remender describes the book as merging “the same brand of ferocious hardcore violence fans of Venom would expect with the international high-adventure of The Bourne Identity, globe trotting from bleak Eastern European war zones to exotic Marvel Universe locations like the Savage Land. It’s James Bond-style worldwide adventuring with high-stakes espionage, intrigue, fast action and an opening mission that holds the stability of the world in the balance.” In short, the “international adventures of 00Venom.”
The new Venom will be introduced in February’s Amazing Spider-Man #654.1 — that’s one of the self-contained stories in the new “Marvel: Point One” initiative — before leaping into his new series the following month.
Since debuting in 1988, Venom has become one of the more popular members of Spider-Man’s rogues gallery and, indeed, the Marvel Universe, starring in more than 20 miniseries and one-shots. However, this new title will be only the second ongoing series for Venom, after the 2003 comic launched as part of Marvel’s short-lived Tsunami imprint.
See some of Moore’s concept art for Venom after the break: