Tag Archives: Greg Rucka

Star Wars Books Reveal First Order Secrets

The Force is awake and the fans are (mostly) happy. But wait, there’s more! Not only will fans be getting at least five more Star Wars films, but the team at Disney/Lucasfilms are creating a layered and beautiful new universe.

**SPOILERS For Episode VII and Star Wars: Before The Awakening**

Continue reading Star Wars Books Reveal First Order Secrets

Star Wars: What Is and Isn’t Canon, and Why it Matters to You

Canon; Essentially the events that unfold in any given tale that are part of the official storyline, whether that be a novel, a film, a video game, etc. 

Now, many Star Wars fans rejoiced when news broke that Disney had acquired the rights to make more Star Wars films. It also crushed others. With the announcement that when Disney purchased the rights, also came the announcement that nearly everything the fans knew as the Star Wars Expanded Universe was essentially made non-canon and re-branded as Star Wars Legends. Some of you may fondly remember the novels in The Thrawn Trilogy by Timothy Zahn or Drew Karpyshyn’s Darth Bane Trilogy. Maybe you played the video games like Shadows of the Empire or Knights of the Old Republic. All of those stories and maybe more importantly, the characters, that those games and books introduced into the Star Wars universe are no longer official and are only “real” from a certain point of view.

Continue reading Star Wars: What Is and Isn’t Canon, and Why it Matters to You

Comic Rack: Spider-Man Ends, Greg Rucka Speaks, and Kirkman & Moore Reach a Settlement

Welcome to Comic Rack! My pick of the top five comic news stories in no particular order…

Boom Studio’s & Paul Jenkins Teaser

Boom studios is one of the many indie comics studios that has found a niche audience with their select few titles of popularity. Arguably their most popular was Mark Waid’s Irredeemable, but they’re also known for their Hellraiser, Planet Of The Apes, and Adventure Time comics. Personally I really loved Irredeemable, and thought it was a great book, even if it’s ending was the same ending from All Star Superman #10. But that’s such a brilliant ending I’ll take it again anyway. When it comes to Boom Studios, there’s not much they do make that I can say anything negatively about, so the fact that Paul Jenkins is working on a project with them, is something I’m looking forward to upon announcement alone. So here comes the teaser for the project, whatever it may be:

via [BloodyDisgusting]

So yeah, not a whole lot to go on there at all. But hell, Jenkins has done incredible work on Hellblazer,  Wolverine: Origin, and my personal favorite, The Sentry. Not that I like who The Sentry became, but that first 6 issues that introduced us to the character were so creatively meta, well written, and emotional that I still love it greatly, even if The Sentry turned into a whiny crybaby Mary Sue piece of shit. To this day I still think that story of The Sentry could be adapted into one of the best original superhero movies ever made, if you just changed it to an original superhero, and make it a bunch of Marvel analogues, ala Planetary, or The Authority. It’d be a great story about superheroes, rather than just being about superheroes.

As for the teaser? Is it a comic about death? Maybe. I know I’ll be looking forward to hearing just what the hell it is.

Greg Rucka Tells It Like It Is

Greg Rucka, probably most famously known for his Batman related work, and his New Krypton storyline for the Old DCU, has been pretty vocal lately with his dislike of the way creator relations are currently being handled by BOTH of the big two, voicing his displeasure in a revealing quote over at [ComicsAlliance].

Rucka said that he’s “reached the end of my Work For Hire rope,” adding that “I have spent a lot of my comics career in service of other masters, and I’ve had enough of that for now. I’m sick to death of the way the Big Two treat people.”

He goes on to add some more details about the mistreatment he’s received from both camps, expressing his displeasure pretty pointedly. As a comics fan, it’s hard to disagree with him, because the points he makes are so prevalent, especially with DC. I’ve heard plenty of horror stories over the years about the way writers are treated like meat into a grinder, especially since there’s so many that are chomping at the bit to break into any sort of comics writing mold. The most obvious and glaring point is that the companies keep trying to compete with each other, and play catch up, rather than strive to innovate or go their own way. The most obvious example is the whole Marvel NOW! thing, which is so blatantly a transparent lift of the concept of New 52, it’s maddening. At least with DC, it made sense, because they had a bowl of spaghetti for continuity, but Marvel seems to be doing this purely for marketing reasons, rather than anything creative.

An industry that only looks to constantly play catch up, is inevitably going to stagnate. As innovation dwindles, and brilliant books that try things differently go by the wayside, you’re in danger of having an industry bubble burst. I don’t mean to go all “THE SKY IS FALLING” on anybody, but I’ve found that generally being a pessimist about these kind of things doesn’t hurt. Expect a kick in the balls, and if you get slapped in the face, you win, I always say. Hopefully, Rucka’s words will wake up some abject comics executive, who’ll help creative minds establish their work in a way that’s beneficial to everyone, rather than threaten them with losing their job to 10 more hungry writers, who’ll work for scraps off the DC table.

Brian Wood’s New Original Title From Image Comics!

Brian Wood is a curious writer for me, personally. First off, the guy has written some of my most favorite comics of all time. Issue #10 of his masterpiece, Local, brought me to tears, and touched me in ways I can barely explain to most people. His other work, is all of differing quality and style, from his massive work on DMZ, to the shockingly different tone of his work on Northlanders, the guy undoubtedly has range.

However, he’s a guy who I’ve met in real life, more than once, both times I went to Comic-Con. It’s one thing to meet someone who’s obviously stressed and trying to cope with the zoo that is CCI, and it’s another to meet a guy who clearly doesn’t really like his fans. I remember being in line, and watching the guy be kind of openly rude to multiple people, begrudgingly signing things, and just generally seeming like he didn’t want to be there. I’d like to think I’m a very understanding person, and I get that after a while it’d be very difficult to be super enthusiastic for each fan you come across when your main prerogative is just getting back to your hotel room and getting some sleep. But it’s another thing when you’re there first thing in the morning, and still have attitude. I gave the guy the benefit of the doubt though, and came back next year, to get him to sign my copy of The New York Four (which is great mind you), only to see him acting the same way again. It was disheartening to say the least.

All personal experiences aside, the man undeniably is a genius and makes great comics, even if he is a bit of a douche. So of course, I’m totally stoked to see he’s working on a sci-fi title dealing with superpowers. The concept of an athlete discovering their superpowers live on television is A-1 dynamite. A stepping stone that could lead to excellence. It’s the sort of thing where I have to separate Brian Wood the man and Brian Wood the writer, and just take his work at face value for the brilliance it is. You can read more about the actual book here.

The Amazing Spider-Man Ends!

via [ComicsAliiance]

Those of you familiar with me here at GB, know I’m not the biggest Spider-Man fan in the world. I’ve said before time and time again, he’s my least favorite superhero, out of the big ones. Something about him I just can’t relate to, even when I was a teen struggling with… helping my weird Aunt, or responsibility, or some other boring shit.

Dammit, sorry. I promised myself I would try to stay as positive as possible for this part of the article.

Unlike some other people, of course. They see this as an attempt to revise, erase, and forget the legacy and history of their superheroes in favor of a cash grab. But that’s what the movies are for. I see this as a welcome change to the entirely shitty status quo that is Spider-Man.

I remember way back when Spider-Man was 3 different books a month and they decided to cancel the other 2. This of course meant Amazing came out 3 weeks in a row every month. Which forced Dan Slott to write weird, lame stories that amounted to mostly useless filler at best, and at worst, horrible retcon filled bullshit like the fallout from One More Day. Then they started introducing stupid villains like Mr. Negative and Anti-Venom, which the mere thought of, to me, screams UNCREATIVE.

I know, they’ll just print another Spider-Man title, and the re-numbering means nothing, and it’ll just be the same book with a different name, maybe with some new gimmicky team attached, or something or other. I don’t know, and I don’t care. It’s all pointless really, and in the meantime, i’ll just try to pretend like this is the end.

Shit. I failed at being positive didn’t I? Oh well.

[Supascoot here. My opinion varies greatly from Cheesebadger’s. Spider-Man is my favorite (Marvel) hero. I don’t like the end of Amazing, and some of the rumors about Spidey’s direction afterwards (Spidey with Doc Ock Arms… Seriously) aren’t filling me with confidence. I would be more upset, but Marvel already punched my love of Spidey history right in the balls with One More Day. So… whatever. Back to you, Cheese.]

Kirkman and Moore Lawsuits Arrive At Mutual Satisfaction

When I first heard about this, I was pretty shocked to hear about it. It seemed like something out of a bad made for TV movie:

Two buddies make a project together. Project gets big. One buddy gets all the credits, lets the fame change him. Leaves previous buddy by the wayside. Previous buddy asks for due credit and compensation, but is unable to reach his old buddy, as he’s now a megalomaniac monster, drunk on his own fame and power. Lawsuits are made, friendships ruined forever. Tragedy. Roll credits.

Which is more or less the situation with Kirkman and Moore, from my point of view anyway. It seems history has a way of repeating itself, what with this happening between Siegel, Shuster, and DC, or arguably even Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. When it comes to partner projects, it’s hard to tell if even your best friends since childhood, (literally in Kirkman/Moore’s case) can be trusted. Unlike those previous examples however, both Moore and Kirkman came to a resolution that seems to be good for all parties involved. I know I’m not privy to many of the personal details but having suffered from the fallout that can come from collaborating with friends on projects and watching those projects fall through, along with the friendships, this story hit a nerve for me. I’m glad they came to an agreement, but I can’t help believe it was at the cost of their friendship. Potentially anyway, but lord knows neither man will actually actively comment on their personal lives in this manner, because who else but me would care?

Tony Moore cares…

Regardless of how I feel personally on the matter, it’s good to know that credit is given where it is due, and all of the other particulars could be put by the wayside. Unfortunately, The Walking Dead is still a terrible TV show, and I’ve never looked to a new season of a show with regretful disdain more than the upcoming third season. I fully expect it to be shit, especially in contrast to the perpetually great comic book. Hopefully this sort of thing won’t happen again, and the comic won’t be affected in any way, because it’s still my #1 read at the top of my pull list every month, for 4 years straight.

You can read more about the actual details of the lawsuit and the settlement here.

That’s it for this edition of Comic Rack. We’ll see you next week.

Comic Rack: CCI 2012 Edition, Now With Actual COMIC News!

Welcome to Comic Rack! My pick of the top five comic news stories in no particular order.

Well this year’s Comic-Con International is over, and everyone who went to it is still recovering from it, physically and monetarily, because there’s no way to go to that thing without spending at least $500 on merch alone, not counting travel and hotel expenses.

While Comic-Con is fun, and it’s fascinating to see all the new trailers and previews for all the upcoming Hollywood projects, each year the actual COMIC part of Comic-Con is de-emphasized, downplayed, or simply just out shined by all the myriad movie/TV/video game presence there is. So collecting important or interesting actual COMIC based news, from Comic-Con, was ironically difficult, because nearly every big event there was based around anything but comics. That being said, here are some of the better news stories since CCI 2012, and in the recent days since it ended.

New Sandman Prequel Announced!

Alright. I have an embarrassing confession to make, that could potentially ruin some of my credibility with a large group of you out there, but here goes: I’ve never read Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series. It’s one of those books that’s been constantly recommended to me, and I’ve always been meaning to read it, but one thing or another has always come along and kept me from actually picking it up and giving it a go. Don’t take this as me slamming it, far from it. I’m a big fan of everything I’ve actually read by Gaiman, I’ve just yet to read his opus. And it’d seem that now is just as good a time as ever, since Vertigo and Gaiman himself have announced a prequel mini-series, covering Morpheus’ story before the original series.

The Official Press Release from Vertigo is as follows:

Twenty-five years after one of the most celebrated graphic novels of all-time hit shelves, award-winning and critically acclaimed author and screenwriter, Neil Gaiman, announces his return to THE SANDMAN. Gaiman made the surprise announcement, via video, at DC Entertainment’s Vertigo panel at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con.  Karen Berger, Executive Editor of Vertigo, then revealed that Gaiman is paired with artist, JH Williams III (BATWOMAN) for the series, who appeared on stage to an already stunned and elated crowd. THE SANDMAN mini-series will be published by Vertigo in 2013.”

You can read the full Press Release over at [CBR], along with this neat video from Gaiman himself.

I’m guessing it’s about time I read that book.

Image Announces A Slew Of New Original Creator Based Titles.

In the past couple of years, Image has really defined itself as an exciting, fun, daring and innovative publisher willing to go out on a limb and take risks with original material, and this year is no exception. Last year Robert Kirkman made an infamous video rallying comics artists and writers to sully forth and make more creator owned titles, to tell their own stories, and to express to everyone that comics aren’t all just capes and masks. After becoming a main image partner himself, Kirkman has definitely had an influence on Image, as they’re certainly following through with the idea of bringing more original, creator based stories to the shelves. During the Image Experience Panel at CCI, they announced 11 new series, all from the collective talent pool of Whilce Portacio, Eric Stephenson, Brandon Graham, Joe Casey, Piotr Kowalski, David Messina, Darick Robertson, Gary Whitta, Kelly Sue Deconnick, Emma Rios, Chris Roberson, Paul Mayberry, James Robinson, J.Bone, Greg Rucka, Michael Lark, Jay Faerber, Joe Harris, and even Howard Chaykin and Matt Fraction.

With that long a list of incredibly talented names, I’m sure you’re dying to know what they’re working on, and the books announced are as follows, via [CBR]:

The first project Stephenson announced was Whilce Portacio’s “Non-Humans,” followed by Stephenson’s “Nowhere Men.” Brandon Graham will do “Multiple Warheads” in October, as well. Joe Casey then came to the stage to discuss the series behind the teaser “Image Comics Wants You to Buy Sex.”

“Superhero comics have always sort of brushed against the concept of sexuality,” Casey said. “It’s time we just embraced it.” The ongoing is simply called “Sex,” which is “not a joke title,” but is “probably not what you’re expecting.” The series is illustrated by Piotr Kowalski.

Another Casey series, “Bounce,” will be drawn by David Messina. The image shown obscures the main character, but Casey promised “the costume is great.” Noting that some fans “wondered what illicit substances I was taking” when he was writing “Godland,” Casey said, “you’ll have no idea what I’m on with this.”

Darick Robertson then joined the panel to discuss “Oliver” with writer Gary Whitta. Robertson he’s been developing this since 2004, but it took a while to find a publisher that “would let us do it the way we want to.”

Kelly Sue Deconnick ascended the dais to discuss “Pretty Deadly,” her book with Emma Rios. “It’s our attempt to revive the spirit of Sergio Leone,” she said. “It is a Western assassin competing for a prize she does not necessarily want.” She said the book is about “the beauty and what we embrace about it, and the destruction,” before adding, “How pretentious does that sound?”

Chris Roberson will write “Rain,” with art by Paul Mayberry. He said he built the fantasy world for it over years with the intention of doing it as a novel series. “Then I realized I was really lazy,” he joked, “and this is something that could take the rest of my life.” So instead “I retooled it as a comic so an artist could do the heavy lifting.

James Robinson came next, promoting “Saviors” with J. Bone. He said J. Bone was frustrated that he’s viewed as a humor artist, so Robinson gave him a horror story to draw. “It’s this young stoner … uncovers an alien invasion and has to find people who believe him.” Complicating matters, “the aliens themselves have many guises.” The initial miniseries will be five issues, though the series may continue beyond that.

Howard Chaykin and Matt Fraction joined the panel, who are collaborating on “Satellite Sam.” “It’s the story of a children’s TV host who is found dead in a somewhat compromising position,” Fraction. “One of the thing that’s found is a box of photographs of every woman Satellite Sam has ‘spent time with,’ and out of that box are clues to who he was and ultimately who killed him.”

“The idea of conflating the Hopalong Cassidy stuff … with the hardboiled crime stuff really appealed to me,” Chaykin said…

…Stephenson then recapped the announcement that J. Michael Straczynski would be resurrecting the Joe’s Comics imprint with four new titles.

Greg Rucka also joined, and he does have a project to announce: “Lazarus,” with artist Michael Lark, for Spring 2013. “The log line is ‘Godfather’ meets ‘Children of Men,’ and that should be confusing,” Rucka said. “It’s hard sci-fi in a near-distant future, our main character gets hurt a lot and keeps coming at you.”

Finally, Stephenson announced Jay Faerber’s “Point of Impact,” coming in October, and “Great Pacific” by Joe Harris.

Holy crap that’s a lot to take in! Out of all those books, the most I’m excited for has gotta be Pretty Deadly, By Kelly Sue Deconnick. Western’s are amazing, and any attempt to get the spirit of Sergio Leone into a book is great, and the idea of a female protagonist in a Leone inspired world is a great one. I’m also always looking forward to anything by Matt Fraction and Greg Rucka, because they’re both brilliant, and Lazarus sounds like the kind of thing that’d be right up my alley. Image is knocking it out of the park for me, and I know I’ll be putting quite a few of these on my pull list soon.

Grant Morrison & Darick Robertson Talk About Their New Collaboration: Happy!

I am a huge fan of Grant Morrison’s work. His projects have ranged the whole gamut of styles and expression, from the incredibly dense (Invisibles, The Filth), to the most mainstream, (All Star Superman), but one thing about Grant Morrison is that his work is consistently creative, innovative, thoughtful and always entertaining. While sure, some of his work can be a bit… weird, he’s able to tap into a voice that has nearly infinite range, and brings a definitive quality to all of his stories.  The book has been pitched by Morrison himself as Sin City meets It’s A Wonderful Life, which sounds exactly like the kind of weird/awesome thing Morrison would do. Grant Morrison also is teaming up with Darick Robertson, whose work on Transmetropolitan and The Boys was truly amazing, so the book will also look great as well. The actual plot and main character however, are discussed in this interview with both Morrison and Robertson, over at [Newsarama].

Newsarama: From what’s been released about Happy! It seems like a straight up crime noir comic… until you bring in the blue feather and a miniature horse named Happy. How would you describe the tone and feeling of Happy!?

Darick Robertson: As Grant described it to me, it’s Sin City meets It’s A Wonderful Life. It’s a funny comic overall, at least from the first issue. I love it, as I’m drawing stuff that’s really in my ‘wheel-house’ as they say…

Nrama: So just who is Nick Sax, the lead of Happy!?

Grant Morrison: Nick Sax is a fallen man – an ex-cop and former golden boy who now makes a living as a freelance hitman. How he got from there to here is revealed in the third issue. Sax is cynical to the point of nihilism, constantly drunk, permanently wasted, and suffers from raging eczema. Although it was only several months after I’d named him to sound like a Mickey Spillane hero that I realized how ridiculously ‘Christmassy’ the name ‘Nick Sax’ is!

Robertson: He’s cynical and calculating. As one line from the scripts describe him in Nick’s own dialogue “I’M A KILLER. I KILL PEOPLE FOR MONEY TO BUY BOOZE, SEX AND ECZEMA MEDICATION -” but you sense there’s something good about him despite all of this and he’s been a lot of fun to draw and create.

Morrison: I’d say Sax is just about the worst sort of human being you could meet…except that there are several characters in this story who make even Nick look like a choirboy. When your hero is a repellent human wreck, the villains have to be absolute monsters.

Sax a great character to write – and hopefully to read about – but you wouldn’t want to be around him.

Nrama: From the sounds of it, Sax is someone who has few friends – especially as a disgraced cop. Does Nick have anyone in the world on his side?

Morrison: Nick has no-one on his side. Nobody likes him, not even his ex-partner. His only ally is a cartoon animal no-one else can see.

Nrama: I take it that cartoon animal is the titular character, Happy The Horse. How does Happy fit into this seemingly crime noir story? And is that feather in the cover Happy’s?
 
Morrison: The iconic blue feather belongs to Happy, yes. The driving engine of this story is the idea of dropping what is essentially a charming cartoon character into the filthiest corners of the human experience and watching the fallout. I wanted to explore the contrast between the ultimate hateful cynic and the ultimate incorrigible optimist and to place upon this tiny blue horse the entire burden of a culture that’s afraid to be hopeful. Happy desperately needs Nick’s help for reasons revealed in the first issue but Nick only cares about saving his own skin – and it’s that tension that drives our story toward its conclusion.

I’ve yet to read a bad Grant Morrison comic, and I truly don’t think I ever will. Any announcement of a new project by him is something I’ll be looking forward to, and Happy! is no exception.

Eisner Award Winners Announced!

The Eisner’s is probably the only awards ceremony I can think of, that consistently rewards the people who actually deserve recognition in their form of media. No Mad Men Emmy style sweeps happen at The Eisners, it’s always a positive ceremony where talent and effort is recognized and rewarded, and the best comics of the year get their due. That being said, having attended The Eisners in the past, it’s goddamned boring. I’m talking I’d-Rather-Watch-Paint-Dry boring. I remember sitting there watching Brian Posehn, a hilarious stand up comedian, read a group of nominee’s names aloud, in fake Klingon, and found myself looking at my watch multiple times. I know that sounds funny, but that was literally the most entertaining thing that happened during the ceremony. So to spare you all from the snoozefest that is The Eisner’s ceremony, and to give you the information that is actually pertinent and important, here is a list of the winners this year, courtesy of [CBR].

Best Short Story
“The Seventh,” by Darwyn Cooke, in Richard Stark’s Parker: The Martini Edition (IDW)

Best Single Issue (or One-Shot)
Daredevil #7, by Mark Waid, Paolo Rivera, and Joe Rivera (Marvel)

Best Continuing Series
Daredevil, by Mark Waid, Marcos Martin, Paolo Rivera, and Joe Rivera (Marvel)

Best Limited Series
Criminal: The Last of the Innocent, by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (Marvel Icon)

Best Publication for Early Readers (up to age 7)
Dragon Puncher Island, by James Kochalka (Top Shelf)

Best Publication for Kids (ages 8-12)
Snarked, by Roger Langridge (kaBOOM!)

Best Publication for Young Adults (ages 12-17)
Anya’s Ghost, by Vera Brosgol (First Second)

Best Anthology
Dark Horse Presents, edited by Mike Richardson (Dark Horse)

Best Humor Publication
Milk & Cheese: Dairy Products Gone Bad, by Evan Dorkin (Dark Horse)

Best Digital Comic
Battlepug, by Mike Norton

Best Reality-Based Work
Green River Killer: A True Detective Story, by Jeff Jensen and Jonathan Case (Dark Horse)

Best Graphic Album – New
Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand, adapted by Ramón K. Pérez (Archaia)

Best Graphic Album – Reprint
Richard Stark’s Parker: The Martini Edition, by Darwyn Cooke (IDW)

Best Archival Collection/Project – Comic Strips
Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse vols. 1-2, by Floyd Gottfredson, edited by David Gerstein and Gary Groth (Fantagraphics)

Best Archival Collection/Project – Comic Books
Walt Simonson’s The Mighty Thor Artist’s Edition (IDW)

Best U.S. Edition of International Material
The Manara Library, vol. 1: Indian Summer and Other Stories, by Milo Manara with Hugo Pratt (Dark Horse)

Best U.S. Edition of International Material – Asia
Onward Towards Our Noble Deaths, by Shigeru Mizuki (Drawn & Quarterly)

Best Writer
Mark Waid, Irredeemable, Incorruptible (BOOM!); Daredevil (Marvel)

Best Writer/Artist
Craig Thompson, Habibi (Pantheon)

Best Penciller/Inker or Penciller/Inker Team
Ramón K. Pérez, Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand (Archaia)

Best Cover Artist
Francesco Francavilla, Black Panther (Marvel); Lone Ranger, Lone Ranger/Zorro, Dark Shadows, Warlord of Mars (Dynamite); Archie Meets Kiss (Archie)

Best Coloring
Laura Allred, iZombie (Vertigo/DC); Madman All-New Giant-Size Super-Ginchy Special (Image)

Best Lettering
Stan Sakai, Usagi Yojimbo (Dark Horse)

Best Comics-Related Journalism
The Comics Reporter, produced by Tom Spurgeon

Best Educational/Academic Work (tie)
Cartooning: Philosophy & Practice, by Ivan Brunetti (Yale University Press)
Hand of Fire: The Comics Art of Jack Kirby, by Charles Hatfield (University Press of Mississippi)

Best Comics-Related Book
MetaMaus, by Art Spiegelman (Pantheon)

Best Publication Design
Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand, designed by Eric Skillman (Archaia)

Hall of Fame
Judges’ Choices: Rudolf Dirks, Harry Lucey
Bill Blackbeard, Richard Corben, Katsuhiro Otomo, Gilbert Shelton

Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award
Tyler Crook

Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award
Morrie Turner

Bill Finger Excellence in Comic Book Writing Award
Frank Doyle, Steve Skeates

Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award
Akira Comics, Madrid, Spain – Jesus Marugan Escobar and
The Dragon, Guelph, ON, Canada – Jennifer Haines

A notable winner this year I totally agree with is Mark Waid for Best Writer, because Irredeemable actually ended in a satisfying, awesome way, and I would have never predicted that. (Even if it was the same ending as All Star Superman #10, but that’s such a brilliant ending, I’ll love it again.) I also have heard lots of good things about his run on Daredevil, but I don’t really read Marvel (long story), so can’t vouch for it myself. I also just picked up the first collection of Battlepug by Mike Norton, and along with being really goofy and cute, any story that is being told by a beautiful naked woman I’ll pretty much love.

My Little Pony Gets A Comic. World Weeps.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t have any intrinsic hate towards My Little Pony. It’s a perfectly fine show to watch if you’re an 8-year-old girl, or a particularly equine loving little boy under the age of 10. If you’re a kid, you get a pass, because My Little Pony is made for you. Cartoon ponies talking about friendship is perfectly acceptable for an adolescent to watch, empathize with and learn from. However, as the lot of you may know, The Internet has gone and officially lost its shit for a show about cartoon ponies, and now we have this “Brony” phenomenon, where teenage to adult males actively watch the show, talk about it, blog about it, make horrific fan art about it, and generally perv out when walking through the pink aisle at Toys’R Us, searching for pony memorabilia. Even stranger is this bizarre defense of this circle of fandom by the aforementioned “Bronys”, who seem to perceive their fandom as something that is being persecuted and shunned like some oppressed minority in a totalitarian state. I’ve even been called “bigoted” towards Bronys in the past, which I’ve thought about and manned up and admitted was true. Yes, I guess I am bigoted towards weird, presumably social maladjusted man-children who obsessively fixate on a cartoon show about ponies. Then again, I tear up when Superman dies at the end of All-Star Superman, so who am I to judge? All I’m saying, is I DON’T GET IT. But, many Brony friends of mine will be pleased to see IDW is releasing a MLP comic soon, as they’ve informed us from their Official Press Release, which you can read here courtesy of [CBR]:

At Comic-Con International, IDW Publishing and Hasbro, Inc. teamed up to announce the addition of yet another hugely successful brand to their portfolio. Based on the Hasbro characters from the popular My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic animated series, created by Hasbro Studios and currently airing on The HUB TV Network in the US, IDW’s MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC comics will offer all-new stories featuring the beloved ponies: TWILIGHT SPARKLE, PINKIE PIE, RARITY, FLUTTERSHY, RAINBOW DASH, and APPLEJACK.

“My Little Pony is a highly successful brand and we’re incredibly excited to have the opportunity to extend the franchise through this collaboration with Hasbro,” said IDW CEO and Publisher, Ted Adams. “We look forward to providing new stories for the fans and launching their favorite ponies into comic book form.”

Fans of the animated series will be excited to hear that the comics will stay true to its moral foundation, while providing themes and subject matter that older audiences can also appreciate. MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC will bring new adventures to the ponies as they help residents of Ponyville while learning memorable lessons about the meaning of friendship.

Coming in November 2012, the series will be written by Katie Cook (Gronk), who has previously worked on DC and Marvel Comics. Taking on the artistic duties is Andy Price (DC Legacy, Batman Archives), with special covers throughout the series by artists including Jill Thompson (Sandman, Beasts of Burden), Stephanie Buscema (Womanthology), and many more.

Jesus wept. Save us Superman.

Scoot will have some Marvel news to follow on the weekend!

Marvel Comics Review: The Punisher #1

I have four words to say after reading this comic book: Thank you Mr. Rucka. The fresh start (and another #1 from Marvel) for Frank Castle has been one of my favorites from Marvel so far. Daredevil was great and Moon Knight is right behind but after all of the garbage that The Punisher character has been through this issue was nothing but win all the way through.

Frank Castle was like a ghost in this issue, lurking in the shadows before he would strike and when he did it was fast, bloody and brutal. This is the best Punisher since the MAX series by Garth Ennis, but it’s a step below it in regards to violence and swearing. I don’t mind the swearing being gone and the violence is only one notch down. They aren’t shy with it. I can’t believe I’m saying this but he almost reminded me of Spawn in this issue the way he showed up a couple times, took out some scum and departed.

Obviously I don’t want to see the whole series be about the detective in this story, Walter Bolt, while Castle is just some force of nature lurking in the shadows. I honestly can’t remember where Castle’s story left off because the character took a downward spiral after Civil War and was in the toilet with the abomination that was Franken Castle.

So now I’m hoping to see what Frank Castle has been up to since Franken Castle and what his relationship with Detective Bolt is. I give the issue a five out of five bears.

The art, story and return of Frank Castle was truly epic. It may seem like a quick reed because of this dialogue free opening and the last part that recollects events through a police report but the whole thing just flowed seamlessly. Excellent work by Greg Rucka and the artist Marco Checchetto in bringing the Punisher back to respectability. This $3.99 comic is worth every penny and there will be a new one out in two weeks! I can’t wait!