Tag Archives: Marvel NOW!

Marvel NOW! Teasers: ‘XX’ Revealed As A New Series, Plus New Artists & Story Arcs!

Okay. Everyone knows that Marvel is loving their teasers lately. And by lately I mean for the last few years. With the Marvel ReEvolution and Marvel NOW! happening as we speak, the teasers have been coming at us pretty hard for the last few months. This latest round introduced some new books, as well as some creative changes to ongoing series. Usually we cover stuff like this in Comic Rack, but with the amount of info we’ve been getting it gets upgraded to it’s own incredibly well written post!

Continue reading Marvel NOW! Teasers: ‘XX’ Revealed As A New Series, Plus New Artists & Story Arcs!

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Comic Rack: Guillermo del Toro’s DC Movie, Marvel’s New Teasers & More!

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

 Guillermo del Toro IS Working On A DC Movie

After a bunch of flip floppy wish wash from PR executives that we’ve previously touched on, lots of rumors and hearsay, it’s finally been confirmed that Guillermo del Toro is actually working on a DC Comics film. Or plans to anyway, I wouldn’t hold my breath for it to come out. Not that I wouldn’t love it, because his idea of a dark supernaturally themed DC movie with Constantine (Pronounced Constan- TYNE), sounds totally awesome and something right up his alley.

[box_light]“The movement for this happened before [The Avengers],” del Toro adds about DC building its own cinematic universe. “They were already galvanized to launch ‘Justice League’ and they were galvanized to make their universe cohesive… They are really, really, with ‘Superman’, very, very confident with what they have. They are now feeling they have two pillars. Batman and Superman… There’s a foundation that now they can build on.”[/box_light]

I’ve long been a fan of Guillermo’s, and think he’s one of the most creative and crafty directors out there that knows how to tell supernatural stories in a way that’s neither cheap nor boring. If Man of Steel is a big hit and the Justice League movie does in fact get made, you better believe I’ll be counting down the days until this project comes to fruition.

Find out more here.

Jeff Lemire Is Doubling Down On DC Projects

Comic Rack 1:9:13- Lemire-Projects

I’m such a huge fan of Jeff Lemire that simple, quick news like this can get my imagination running in a thousand different ways. The news is basically that he’s hinted at bringing some old school DC characters back into the modern fray. Which ones you ask? Well, they would consist of Kamandi: The Last Boy On Earth, Jemm: Son Of Saturn, Red Tornado, and even The Spectre. Right now it’s all conjecture based on some images he tweeted, so It could all be for naught. I’m sure there’s always the possibility he was being a comics nerd and sharing some cool pictures with his fans, in the same way I share pictures of my cats with my fans. All zero of them. Regardless of my pathetic nature, if Lemire does end up doing something with these projects, you’ll definitely be informed right here the moment it does.

Find out more here.

Marvel Teaser Season Is Back, And One Features Brian Wood!

Comic Rack- 1:9:13- Brian Wood-XX-Marvel-Now!

In yet another teaser released by Marvel to make us all speculate endlessly until we don’t, we’ve got the vague hint at some new book that will be possibly related to X-women. The teaser released shows a picture of two X’s, with a DNA double hellix behind them, along with Brian Wood and Olivier Coipel’s names. It’s a bit obvious it’s referring to women in some way, what with the XX chromosome being referenced, but the question is who exactly? We all know Brian Wood is pretty familiar with writing women so it’s a question of who he’ll be writing about, rather than if. A solid speculation could be that the DNA helix hints at the genetic code that leads to mutants, and along with the X being such a famously mutant related letter at Marvel it’s a safe bet to make that it’s gonna be an X-Men related title. Some say it could even be called X-Women? I personally think that’s a corny title, but I’m positive it’ll be an interesting book nonetheless.

Along with that came another teaser announcing Phil Noto’s arrival as artist of the new Thunderbolts series. It’s titled Explosive and the image is certainly that:comic-rack-marvel-teasers-explosive

As always there are more teasers from Marvel, some of which are utterly baffling, like this “Birth” one:

Comic-Rack-1:9:13-marvel-Birth-teaser

And this trio of obvious ones for Hulk, Deadpool, and Spider-Man, respectively:

Comic Rack-1:9:13-Hulk Teaser Comic Rack 1:9:13-Deadpool-Teaser Comic Rack- 1:9:13- Spiderman-teaser

Find out more here, here, here, here and here.

Dan Slott Keeps Pumping Out The Spider-Man Craziness By Bringing In Spider-Man 2099

Comic Rack-1:9:13-Spiderman-2099

Listen, I haven’t read a Spider-Man book in years. I think the last time I did was when they switched Amazing to 3 times a week. I decided that was way more BS than I could handle at any given time, along with all of the One More Day nonsense that was going on. It pretty much put me off of Spider-Man forever, which hasn’t been remedied by the terrible movies and it’s subsequent reboots and forced sequels. He’s by far always been my least favorite character, and seeing all the wacky stuff Dan Slott has been doing to Spider-Man has done little to raise my interest in that book. Sometimes something is done when it’s done for you, and that’s that. That being said, I do find it interesting he’s bringing back Miguel O’Hara into the current continuity. That’s right, Spider-Man 2099 is going to be integrated into The Superior Spider-Man somehow. I remember reading issues of Spider-Man 2099 in the late nineties and being really stoked when I found his action figure because I thought it was rare. Regardless, the amount of novel things Dan Slott seems to be trying with Spider-Man these days, without getting into spoiler territory, is pretty interesting. It almost makes me wish somebody as gutsy and ballsy as him would try something like that with Batman or Superman, but he’s already gotten death threats and whatnot for stinkin’ Spider-Man, so I wouldn’t blame him for avoiding any other superhero properties for a while.

Find out more here.

Titan Comics Launches A Creator-Owned Based Imprint!

Comic Rack- 1:9:13- Titan Comics

I’m a pretty huge fan of creator owned comics. They’re by far what I read the most of nowadays, and to me are always the more personally rewarding stories. I love me a good superhero book, don’t get me wrong, but there’s nothing like a perfectly made mini-series that takes chances with its story and uses the medium of comics itself to tell a more effective story than any of the Big Two could. While I’m not very familiar with Titan, I always applaud another indie publisher throwing their hat into the ring and I’m especially fond of the plan to focus on creator owned content. It’d be pretty great if we got another big creative owned hit from them the way Image did with The Walking Dead or Invincible. It’s unlikely, but not impossible.

Find out more here.

That’s all for this week’s edition! We’ll see you next time at the Comic Rack!

Comic Rack: Hellblazer CANCELLED, Marvel NOW! On the Radio, & Image Teases ‘Arrow’?

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

Hellblazer is CANCELLED, but Constantine lives on in the New 52!

I knew this was only a matter of time once the New 52 came around. While I haven’t read Hellblazer regularly since Warren Ellis was last writing for it, I knew his character stood alone in his universe that was decidedly separate from the main old DCU. Once everything reset, and Constantine started showing up in Justice League Dark, I figured its days were numbered. I am pretty sad to see it go, since Hellblazer is by far my favorite horror comic of all time, and Constantine is probably the most badass and awesome character in the entire Vertigo lineup, and possibly in all of DC. Yes, even more badass than Batman. Suck it.

While the printing of Constantine as a new ongoing doesn’t surprise me, I’m probably still going to end up reading it, if only to get back into the John Constantine fray. He’s a character I truly adore, and despite being royally mistreated by one of the worst adaptations into film ever, I think he’s resilient enough to hold onto public interest. That’s not to say that Keanu Reeves Constantine* is a bad movie, it’s just a terrible adaptation of a nearly perfect story arc from Hellblazer. If you can divorce it from its source material, it’s actually pretty enjoyable. That being said, I hope this doesn’t mean the death knell for the possibility of any comic series actually getting high up in numbers before a reset is due, since everyone seems so afraid of high numbered issues now. Pretty soon we’ll get an ALL NEW WALKING DEAD #1, where Rick has an axe for a hand now, and T-Dog suddenly and miraculously has been in the comic all this time!

Find out more here.

*which is the title, everywhere you look on posters or DVD’s you’ll see the title is Keanu Reeves Constantine, which proves it’s not meant to be a true Hellblazer or Constantine movie. The movie should be literally titled “Keanu Reeves Constantine” which would be accurate, because it is definitely NOT John Constantine, or Hellblazer. Thus I still hold out hope for a Hellblazer movie. I know, I’m dumb. [ED. NOTE: I don’t agree with this statement, however I do agree that Adam is dumb.]

DC Is Looking to Scale Back Variant Covers. Fans Say Thanks. World Moves On.

Being a comics fan, I love me a good cover. However one thing I’ve never really been is a comics collector. I’m not that guy who will spend time trying to hunt down a single issue to complete a set, or find one particularly rare issue to add to a themed collection, nor have I ever collected for profit. While I personally may have never had any attraction to variant covers, I can understand the allure of them. Frankly, I always thought they were a bit of a waste, especially since I know the whole litany of trouble local comic shops have to go through in order to get some of those covers. I collect my comics because I want to read the stories, and I just end up storing them, not necessarily “collecting” them. Sure, I may have 2 long boxes and need about 4 more, but If it was up to me, I’d rather archive all of my singles into trade form. Even that gets to be a hassle, and I’d rather purchase all of my trades digitally. I know that sounds like sacrilege to some people, but I’m the kind of guy who’d like to reduce my need for shelf space.

An interesting side note, that along with “pulling back” on variant covers, DC is also going to be releasing 52 variants for Justice League Of America #1. Which aside from being insane, really seems to go against their entire point of “pulling back”. Whatever DC, shine on you crazy diamond.

Find out more here.

Marvel NOW! Is Advertising On the Radio. Also Teletype Machines, Telegraph, and Carrier Pigeons!

In a strange example of Marvel really trying hard to get the word out there for Marvel NOW!, they’re resorting to buying air time on radio in order to advertise for comics. First and foremost, who the hell even listens to the radio anymore? Almost everybody I know listens to podcasts, custom streaming radio stations, or their own mobile phones, which almost assuredly have music on them. The thought of advertising on radio seems so archaic, backwards, and desperate to me. It makes Marvel look desperate to try to one up DC’s success with the New 52. I imagine some upper exec asking about how they can advertise where nobody else is right now, and some timid advertising client quietly speaks up about radio. The Upper Exec’s eyes widen and he’s all KID YOU’RE A GENIUS!

That’s the only explanation I can think of right now, but I suppose it’ll be interesting to hear an audio ad for a comic book. Will they have voice actors play Marvel characters? Will Stan Lee be doing them? I guess it could be kind of cool if Stan Lee did them and interrupted whatever tripe Lady Gaga or Rihanna are ravaging the airwaves with, to talk for a few minutes about how much he loves the Avengers and Spider-Man and call you his own personal Spider-Friend. You could close your eyes and pretend you’re in the ’50s or something, back when radio was a viable medium to advertise in. It’d work perfectly right until some terrible throbbing club song came on and brought you back to horrible reality.

Find out more here.

Image Has a Teaser for an ‘Arrow’ of Their Own, Kind Of

Guys shooting arrows seems to be pretty popular right now. What with Jeff Lemire taking over Green Arrow, that whole Arrow show on The CW, and Hawkeye finding newfound popularity due to The Avengers, archery is IN. Not that I’m suggesting Image is following a trend or anything, because I’m sure the comic this ad is teasing was long planned, and by the nature of it’s title I doubt that arrows being shot at bad guys is the sole focus. The book is called Five Weapons, and from this teaser I think we’re meant to infer that it’s some sort of team book, and the bow and arrow toting “Darryl The Arrow” is one of 5 members who presumably each have their own weapon. That’s my guess anyway. Whether the rest will end up with a hammer, metal suit of armor, or a giant shield is yet to be seen. As it is, I’m intrigued.

Find out more here.

DC Digital Sales Up Close to 200% From Last Year!

I’m going to try to stay impartial, but it’s hard to not note the dichotomy between The Big Two when one is improving their forward thinking, dynamic digital sales plan that’s embracing technology and the future of the medium, and the other decides that they should advertise on f*%#ing radio. Regardless of that inanity, this doesn’t surprise me one bit. When it comes down to it, for a lot of people buying your singles digitally is far easier, convenient, and cheaper. Especially since most digital comics are now out day and date, and eventually decrease in price as time goes on, unlike a book on a shelf that always remains cover price unless the store holding it changes the price.

I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the spike in digital sales increased when DC released large groups of classic trades for download on Android platforms last year, and has continued to do so. I’ve personally bought trades digitally for $10 that I would have never gambled on at a physical store, simply because of the ease and convenience. Not to mention that if the trade I bought sucked, it’s not taking up precious space on my shelf. I see the future of comics as maintaining this direction, and while I WILL mourn the slow and painful death of the traditional brick and mortal Local Comic Shop, it’s something that’s inevitable. They’ll either have to adapt by allowing some sort of digital pass/keycode sale, or provide services that you can get from simply buying a digital file online. Either way, innovation is going to happen, and we’ll see how it ends up, for better or worse.

Find out more here.

That’s all for this week’s edition! We’ll see you next time at the Comic Rack!

Comic Rack: Hickman’s Avengers Plans, X-Force Loves The 90’s, & Garth Ennis Has A Red Team!

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

Jonathan Hickman’s Plans for The Avengers

One of the most distressing things about this new Marvel NOW! thing is the dichotomy of feelings it gives me about Jonathan Hickman. On one hand, I love the idea of a man as brilliant as him writing Avengers stories, that will undoubtedly be amazing. On the other hand, I can’t afford to buy all the books Marvel prints, with their 50 tie ins and side stories and everything. It really seems like If I wanted to buy Hickman’s Avengers, I’d at least have to buy 3 other books to get the full story. And being a total completist nerd, I either go whole hog and get everything, or none at all. In my case, it’s currently none at all, because following DC in this fashion is making my wallet look at me every Wednesday like I’m slowly skinning it in a laboratory. However, reading ABOUT Hickman’s Avengers is still fascinating, and the news of what he’s doing with them piques my interest.

“The conversation shifted to the mysterious “New Avengers” team, which Jonathan revealed consists of the Illuminati, which was introduced in Brian Bendis’ “New Avengers.”“It’s about the guys that very quietly and secretly run the world,” he said. “It’s thematically much different than what’s going on in ‘Avengers.’ The plan that I’ve worked up is that the Avengers are the utopian Avengers. They’re the ideal Avengers, whereas the New Avengers are real-world. They live in the world as it is, which is dark and apocalyptic. It’s very old-school. We’re pretty excited about it. The books will work together, in tandem. You don’t have to read both of them, but if you do, there will be things that echo across the books.”

via [CBR]

This is a classic example of something comics writers say, but never do. “Oh you don’t have to read them both/all/whatever, but there will be bonus story connections between…” blah blah blah. I know this game. I’m not falling for it mister. My wallet shrieks in pain every time I open it now from the trauma of Civil War, and that was YEARS ago.

Cable & X-Force Bring Back The 90’s

I know, I know, we’ve talked about this Cable series before, but sometimes a book is so interesting you just gotta follow up on it when you hear more about it. Especially if it involves Cable. In the 90’s Cable was a pretty big deal. I remember seeing lots of comics with him holding big guns, doing stuff, and having lots of pouches. I know it’s very hip to hate on 90’s pouches, but you know…. It’s fun. I always imagined he had ammo of course, but also just an entire spectrum of things in each pouch. Sort of like an Uber-Bat-Utility Belt. Regardless of pouches though, the thought of a comic being printed today with that ultra macho, pouch-tastic sensibility appeals to what very little bit of nostalgia there is in me to appeal to. Hopeless seems to be taking that idea and running with it.

Newsarama: Dennis, the first thing I wanted to ask about stemming from your first couple interviews on Cable and X-Force is the idea of not shying away from the inherent ’90sness of the characters and concept. Why is it important for you to embrace that, and not run from it? And though obviously the point is to present those things in a modern context, but what kinds of ’90s motifs and practices do you find still work today?

Dennis Hopeless: I think there’s something about badass for badass sake. I was a kid when those early X-Force issues were coming out. My friends and I loved them because they were badass. Everything was high-octane and over the top. It’s the same reason we all loved Schwarzenegger and Stallone and Robocop.”

via [Newsarama]

So I’ll avoid the easy joke of a guy named Hopeless writing a comic about Cable who has a daughter named Hope, and instead just mention how this book actually seems pretty interesting. I’ve never read anything by Dennis Hopeless, but he seems to be doing good work, and I love his name. The fact that he mentions Stallone, Schwarzenegger and Robocop just seals the deal for me. He seems like he gets it, and will actually produce the kind of book Liefeld was always going for, but ended up failing at. It’s the difference between a delicious, fluffy croissant and a rice cake. They’re both mostly air, but one is way better than the other.

Garth Ennis Assembles A New ‘Red Team’

After wrapping up his long running series The Boys, Ennis doesn’t look like he’s taking any breaks. The man certainly is full of ideas, and this new mini-series he’s developing sounds like one of the more tame ones, compared to the usual shock tactics he’s famous for.

In Red Team, Garth Ennis and Dynamite described “up-and-coming artist” Craig Cermak team for this new seven issue limited series that features a Major Crimes task force in the NYPD who make a bad call that leads to lots of drama. The team decides to murder a suspect, and things don’t go well after that. Dynamite described the series as “in the tradition of The Wire and The Shield” in a press release.”

via [Newsarama]

Aside from Preacher, I’ve always thought that Garth Ennis worked better with his mini-series. The Boys trailed off around issue 23 in my opinion, and never really recovered for me since. His mini-series have always appealed to me. I like the idea of him returning to another reality themed book, and think tackling a concept like a task force in the real world could work well for him. The guy has the chops to do more down to earth, gripping stuff in him. He did it really well for his Punisher run way back when, and Battlefields is the only modern example I can think of. I’ll be looking forward to this one because I know it’ll be done in 7 issues, and for a guy like me that’s comforting from a monetary standpoint, but disappointing if I end up REALLY liking it. Everything’s a catch-22 for me. Shit.

Mark Waid Is Taking On The Green Hornet

Now that Mark Waid has made himself a bigger deal with the success of Irredeemable, it seems his name has some clout to it that will bring more attention to what he’s doing. Specifically, Green Hornet. A character who is pretty famously non-popular. Not that he’s UN-popular, which means people hate him ala Aquaman. He’s just non-popular. Like… Red Tornado. Most people haven’t heard of him, but those who have probably don’t have any strong feelings about him. You’d have a hard time being pressed to list a seminal Green Hornet story the way you would with nearly any other superhero. That being said, perhaps Mark Waid will give Green Hornet his.

“It should come as little surprise that I have an affinity for all costumed crimefighters no matter if their adventures are ‘period pieces’ or not–heroism is heroism regardless of whatever year’s on the calendar,” said writer Mark Waid in a press release.  “With this Green Hornet project, which I’ve been percolating on for more than ten years, I’m able to meld my love of the Hornet’s legacy with a little bit of Citizen Kane and a lot of Lawrence of Arabia to tell a story never before told–the dark years of the Hornet’s later career and the one mistake he makes that nearly costs him everything.”

via [Newsarama]

So… Green Hornet will make newspapers in the desert while freeing slaves? And go sledding? Or something? Okay so I’ve never actually seen Citizen Kane (I know), but still. The man at least knows what he’s trying to accomplish. They even made that Green Hornet movie a year ago didn’t they? Then there was Kevin Smith’s comic, right? So maybe this whole thing has been building to this. Perhaps The Green Hornet will finally get his due? Being unfamiliar with his character in almost every dimension makes it hard for me to feel anything about this other than bemused indifference. I really loved Irredeemable though, so maybe it’ll be good. It’s weird, it’s almost like I have to try to purposely make an effort to like Green Hornet. I’m hoping soon I’ll be able to change my mind about him. Or not. Whatever.

Frank Cho Brings Us Savage Wolverine

Frank Cho is one of those names that’s known in particular for one thing. Cheesecake. No, not the delicious dessert, but rather the term for gratuitous shots of gorgeous, lusty, busty women posing seductively in some manner. Personally I have no problem with this. Who doesn’t like beautiful, busty, buxom, bouncing babes busting out of their brassieres? (+5 Alliteration skill)You know what else everyone loves? Wolverine. Now thanks to Frank Cho, we’ll get a book with BOTH!

See?

The new series will start off, appropriately enough, in the Savage Land. Shanna the She-Devil, who Cho previously worked on in the Shanna the She-Devil limited series, will guest star in the series’ opening story arc, which features a stranded Wolverine waking up in the Savage Land with no memory of how he arrived. “The story takes place in the forbidden area of the Savage Land where an evil ancient god slumbers,” said Cho. “Wolverine and others accidentally unleash it, while trying to get home.”

via [ComicsAlliance]

I know this might rile up some weird Wolverine fanboys who don’t want their cheesecake mixing with their Wolverine…salad. Or whatever. All I can say is why not? Why not make a book with Wolverine fighting dinosaurs in the Savage Land, assisted by a busty,  scantily clad sidekick who stabs dudes with her spear? Must everything be so dark all the time? The book sounds like it’ll be a hoot, and most importantly, actually interesting. A lot of writers get so caught up with making Wolverine such a gritty, broody, dark mother f-er they lose sight of the potential to just make him a badass awesome character who gets shit done. Best he is at what he does and all that. Plus boobs! Boobs! If you can’t get behind that, man… I dunno how to help you.

That’s it for this week! Be sure to check out more Comic Rack here!

Comic Rack: Grant Morrison’s Multiversity, Stan Lee Is NOT Dying, & Ghosts!

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

Grant Morrison’s Multiversity Is Coming

via [Newsarama]

I sure do loves me some Grant Morrison. It’s not exactly a secret, but I tend to think the man is a genius, and I’ve said so a bunch of times here on Comic Rack. I think he’s one of the few guys who really truly gets superheroes, what they mean in a contemporary social context, and does them well. I know I’m the one who is usually clamoring for writers to stick to their own original projects first, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love it when geniuses like Hickman, Lemire or Morrison work on mainstream stuff by the Big Two. I’m probably one of the 10 or so people who LOVED Final Crisis and thought it a complex, densely intricate and beautiful story that is best told in one go, rather than in a serial format. To me, Morrison knows how to handle universal concepts, and the fact that he’s now working on Multiversity has me intrigued.

For those who don’t know, Multiversity was meant to follow-up 52 and Infinite Crisis a few years back, but never showed up for some reason or another. Presumably the reason is because he had to re-write it in planning for the New 52, but who knows how long DC really had the New 52 in planning before they executed it. My personal guess is not very long at all, from the rumblings I hear of how things are managed. Regardless, I’m totally stoked for Multiversity. If there’s one guy who knows how to do stories that span across universes, it’s Grant Morrison. You can read more about the actual plans for the title here, and a fascinating interview with him about it here.

Here’s some very cool art from Multiversity released by Frank Quitely this past weekend:

Johns & Lemire Add Their Names to ‘Ghosts

It’s finally that time of the year where all things morbid, spookifying and Halloweeney are celebrated. As a kid I always looked forward to Halloween, because it led to Christmas. Nowadays that anticipation for Christmas is replaced with jaded cynicism, and my love for all things horrifying, along with my love for Halloween. It was a real surprise to me then, to find out only just this week about a Halloween anthology project that gathers some of my favorite comics writers and artists of all time. The project is a one shot called Ghosts, that looks to be goddamned amazing from its talent line up and subject matter.

via [CBR]

A revival of the publisher’s 1970s horror series of the same name, the 80-page one-shot boasts also includes stories by the likes of Gilbert Hernandez, Paul Pope, Phil Jimenez, David Lapham, Amy Reeder, Mark Buckingham, John McCrea, Rufus Dayglo, Toby Litt and the late Joe Kubert, with covers by Dave Johnson and Brendan McCarthy.

I don’t often say this, but ZOMFG!1!!one! Look at that list of talent! All of those people are artists whose work I specifically look out for based on their name alone, and somehow, someway, I’VE MISSED THIS UP UNTIL NOW? I feel like I’ve failed my dying, withered and emaciated inner child. The fact that Lemire and Johns are adding a story to it just sweetens the pot, and makes me drool in anticipation for this thing to come out. Can you imagine an anthology novel written by these guys? 80 pages isn’t NEARLY long enough for me. I demand they make this book an anthology of anthologies. Let’s see Ghosts 2 through infinity. Let this thing spin-off into a whole series of horror related books that involve all of my favorite comics authors and artists, endlessly working to make material that appeals to me as perfectly as this book does. You can check out more preview art for the project here & here. That Hernandez panel looks goddamned awesome. Holy hell. I can’t wait to read this thing.

Stan Lee is NOT Sick Or Dying!

Recently Stan Lee has had to cancel a lot of public appearances, and until now he hasn’t revealed exactly why. As the cancellations piled up, rumors started to spread. Frankly, the guy’s up there in age, and it didn’t seem to bode well for his current state of health. The problem was exacerbated by the fact that nobody really knew what was up. Thankfully, he’s broken the silence and filled us in on whats the haps.

via [CBR]

“Attention, Troops! This is a dispatch sent from your beloved Generalissimo, directly from the center of Hollywood’s combat zone!” Lee wrote on the POW! Entertainment website. “Now hear this! Your leader hath not deserted thee! In an effort to be more like my fellow Avenger, Tony Stark, I have had an electronic pace-maker placed near my heart to insure that I’ll be able to lead thee for another 90 years. But fear thee not, my valiant warriors. I am in constant touch with our commanders in the field and victory shall soon be ours. Now I must end this dispatch and join my troops, for an army without a leader is like a day without a cameo!”

Well that’s certainly comforting, made all the better by the way it was written. I dare you to try to read that and not have Stan Lee’s voice echoing in your head. In all seriousness, I was pretty relieved to find out the guy’s gonna be okay, but for a moment there I remember thinking that I’d have to end up writing up rumors about his imminent death. Which believe me, is nothing I want to do. I may rag on Marvel here and there, and I’ve probably talked a bit of trash about Stan in the past in comparison to Kirby, but I do have massive respect for him. The man’s an icon for god’s sake, who the hell doesn’t wish him a long and happy life? You’d have to be a total shit head to be all “GOOD. HARUMPH. I HOPE HE DIES SOON”. I know, I’m probably extrapolating a bit far in terms of fan reaction, but this is the Internet. People are terrible here.

Disabled Artist, Writer, Writes & Draws Comic Using Only His Mouth

Normally I’d try to avoid a semi-sensationalist descriptive title like the one above, but in this case it’s pretty necessary to point out what a feat it truly is. Larime Taylor is a disabled artist and writer who well, manages to do with only his mouth what some folks cant with two hands and a whole writing staff working underneath them.  He has a congenital condition where the muscles and joints in his body are pretty profoundly affected. The guy is working on a book called Dark Zoey that I can’t wait to read. Listen, I don’t often go for the feel good kind of stories, or anything even remotely mushy, but as I’ve grown older I’ve conversely become softer and simultaneously more jaded towards a lot of things in my life. This sort of thing is one of the ones I’ve become more soft towards. A younger me would simply not have cared, but now I find stories like this awe-inspiring.

The man’s determination is resolute, and his humble nature make me realize how much I take for granted in my everyday life as a writer. I don’t know if I’d have the strength to overcome the odds he has, nor the tenacity to continue pursuing my own goals as he has. The guy’s story is really something to behold, and a fascinating read. Basically he’s writing this book using Kickstarter, and the donations will go towards helping him produce the book so everyone out there can read it. Aside from his own personal story though, is the book’s story. Which is summarized on the Kickstarter page, and it sounds exactly like the kind of story I’d love:

Some people become killers. 

Zoey was born that way. 

Ever since she can remember, Zoey Aarons has felt the urge to kill. For eighteen years she resisted those urges and fought to be someone better than her base instincts would allow. In a moment of weakness and anger, however, she let go and took a life. That hazy Seattle summer day still haunts her, and as she begins college far away from home, she’s afraid that she will kill again. 

She’s right to be afraid. 

Instead of leaving that fateful day behind her and starting a new life as a college freshman, Zoey’s about to be tested and face temptation in ways far greater than she could ever imagine. The prestigious women’s college that she’s attending on a full academic scholarship is in Cutter’s Circle, California, and Cutter’s Circle has a dirty little secret: it has the highest population of serial killers in the country. The town is up to its proverbial severed head in murderers.

I’ve barely only scratched the surface of it all, and you owe it to yourself to go and read the whole article over at [Newsarama], or donate to the Kickstarter page itself.

New Thunderbolts #3 Cover Has A Red Leader

The new Thunderbolts book coming out is gonna have an interesting gimmick applied to all of the covers. The gimmick being a red tint to all of them, that has some vague sort of story related reason for their particular hue. Notable out of all of them is a cover featuring The Leader, who is now noticeably redder than we’re used to. In the past, all Hulk related things becoming red usually meant bad things for all those involved. The thought of The Leader getting super-red-Hulk powers sounds pretty bad, but perhaps there’s more to it.

via [Newsarama]

Interesting. Perhaps he’s just really sunburnt?

Here’s some of the other covers themselves. I suppose the red tint is going to get explored in the story itself. So why are they red? My first and safest guess is it represents some thematic sort of thing. Vengeance, anger, blood. All that sort of thing. What do I hope it is? Hoo boy.

I hope it’s some kind spectacular foreboding message to all of the enemies of the Thunderbolts. They start wearing red as a warning, particular the Punisher. The whole thing is representative of the “blood” they’ll carry on their hands, as they start taking down evil motherf–ks left and right. Eventually, they’ll all decide the only way to continue their blood feud is to all become Red Hulk versions of themselves, and of course some of it gets into bad guys hands like The Leader. They then somehow get into space, and use their Red Hulk powers to blow up entire evil planets. Red Hulk actually takes the Red Hulk powers and becomes Double Red Hulk, and uses his Double Red Hulkness to split the fabric of reality and space-time, until they end up in an entirely new reality. They cross through The Bleed, and end up transubstantiating their collective consciousness into one singular unified being, and project themselves outward into infinite, reversing all socially accepted constructs of what color “is”. Along with that, they also blow up the Death Star.

Or maybe it’s just to make them look real tough. Whatever.