Author Archive for Albert Ching

EXCLUSIVE: Rafael Albuquerque Covers Black Hammer: Age of Doom #1

EXCLUSIVE: Rafael Albuquerque Covers Black Hammer: Age of Doom #1

American Vampire and Huck artist Rafael Albuquerque has entered the world of Black Hammer with a variant cover for Dark Horse Comics’ Black Hammer: Age of Doom #1, seen here first on CBR.

The cover is an exclusive available only to retailers at the 2018 Diamond Retailer Summit, happening April 4-April 6 at the McCormick Place Convention Center in Chicago, directly preceding the city’s C2E2 convention (which takes place April 6-April 8). Black Hammer: Age of Doom #1 is scheduled for release on April 18, from the Black Hammer team of writer Jeff Lemire and artist Dean Ormston.

RELATED: Best Comics of 2017: Black Hammer is Everything Good About Superheroes

Here’s the solicitation copy for the latest entry in the Black Hammer saga: “Picking up immediately where we left off — Lucy Weber has become the new Black Hammer and right as she’s about to reveal to our heroes how they got stuck on the farm and can escape she vanishes. Now our new Black Hammer finds herself trapped in a gritty world filled with punk rock detectives, emo gods, anthropomorphic humans, absurdist heroes, and many more weirdoes, in a mad world in which there is no escape!”

Dark Horse will also provide retailers with a copy of the Xerxes: The Fall of the House of Darius and the Rise of Alexander #1 convention exclusive variant, which will also be available for sale to C2E2 attendees. The wraparound cover is on thick stock, and stamped with metallic gold foil highlights.

Xerxes: The Fall of the House of Darius and the Rise of Alexander, the five-issue follow up to Frank Miller’s 300, is scheduled to debut with its issue out on April 4, the same week as C2E2 and the Diamond Retailer Summit. The series is is written and drawn by Miller, with colors by Alex Sinclair.

The post EXCLUSIVE: Rafael Albuquerque Covers Black Hammer: Age of Doom #1 appeared first on CBR.

DC and Hanna-Barbera Meet Again with New Round of Unexpected Crossovers

DC and Hanna-Barbera Meet Again with New Round of Unexpected Crossovers

In 2016, DC announced plans to reinvent classic Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters in contemporary comic books such as Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis and Howard Porter’s Scooby Apocalypse — which, as the name implies, put the Scooby-Doo gang in the middle of the apocalypse — and people were, not surprisingly, skeptical. Then the comic books came out, and many were won over by the unconventional and creative approaches on display — especially in Mark Russell and Steve Pugh’s The Flintstones, which became one of the most critically acclaimed comic books of that year.

Last year, DC took this Hanna-Barbera renaissance to its next natural destination, in four one-shots that saw DC superheroes matched up with famous names from the Hanna-Barbera roster: Green Lantern/Space Ghost, Booster Gold/The Flintstones, Adam Strange/Future Quest and, of course, Suicide Squad/Banana Splits. On May 30, DC will release four brand-new one-shots crossing over the world of Hanna-Barbera and the DC Universe in unexpected ways, this time focused on Hanna-Barbera characters from the ’70s, rather than the ’60s. CBR has the first details.

RELATED: How DC’s Flintstones Became The Most Important Comic Of The Year

All on the way, as 48-page one-shots with a $4.99 cover price: An Aquaman/Jabberjaw Special by Dan Abnett, Paul Pelletier and Andrew Hennessey (with a back-up by Jeff Parker and Scott Kolins starring Captain Caveman, The Spectre and the wizard Shazam); Black Lightning/Hong Kong Phooey Special by Bryan Hill, Denys Cowan and Bill Sienkiewicz (with a back-up by Parker and Kolins featuring a pre-Demon Jason Blood and The Funky Phantom); The Flash/Speed Buggy Special by Scott Lobdell, Brett Booth and Norm Rapmund (starring the Wally West Flash); and Super Sons/Dynomutt Special, which writer Peter J. Tomasi has already discussed online, featuring Fernando Pasarin and Oclair Albert.

”Mixing DC and Hanna-Barbera characters together for these stories is always fun because the results tend to be wildly unpredictable,” DC Co-Publisher Dan DiDio said in a statement. “Even before you know what the story’s about, just hearing the names that get thrown together instantly brings a smile to your face and puts your imagination into overdrive, trying to figure out what kind of story could possibly come from these team ups. Fortunately, we’ve got the perfect lineup of creators that can bring those stories to life.”

CBR talked in-depth with DiDio about the new round of DC/Hanna-Barbera crossovers, the inevitable pairing of Hong Kong Phooey and Black Lightning, the opportunity to introduce characters like the Funky Phantom to new audiences, the importance of having fun with DC superheroes and the tantalizing tease of “Reverse Speed Buggy.”

Black Lightning/Hong Kong Phooey Special cover by Denys Cowan, Bill Sienkiewicz and Jeromy Cox

CBR: Dan, definitely want to talk about each one of these individually, but let’s start from a broader perspective: You’ve really championed DC’s Hanna-Barbera Beyond comics, and these crossovers — was it a no-brainer to do another round? Did you have enough ideas generated the first time around you had to do it again?

Dan DiDio: We had a lot of fun with the first round of crossovers, and also the series themselves have been a real interesting mix of product that we’ve been able to kick out, and present these characters in new ways. But one of the things that I’ve noticed personally is that I was really focused on the Hanna-Barbera characters from the ’60s, because that was my sweet spot. Those were the ones I remembered well. Then I had folks in the building coming up to me, constantly asking me about different characters that we didn’t use. Characters like Jabberjaw, or Dynomutt, or Hong Kong Phooey weren’t my sweet spot. Because of that, I never really gave them the amount of attention. Then, as I started to look at these characters more, I saw there was a lot of potential here, as well.

Sure enough, just as we found creators that were interested in Jonny Quest and Space Ghost, we found just as many characters that were interested in Hong Kong Phooey, Jabberjaw, and, of all things, Speed Buggy. It was a lot of fun. I enjoy any one of these things where we get a chance to look at characters from a different way, and present them in a story that we haven’t seen before. We’ve done it with Hanna-Barbera, we had a lot of success with Looney Tunes — we still have people talking about Batman/Elmer Fudd — I’m hoping that with every round of these crossovers, we create that one, two, three books that really pop out, and become something people really enjoy.

It’s fun seeing these Hanna-Barbera characters reimagined in different ways, and pairing them with DC characters say something about both. What kind of message, for you, does this send about the current era of DC and the willingness to have fun with the DC superheroes, and the freedom to put them in clearly unexpected positions and situations?

We’ve been broadening out on a pretty consistent basis, in terms of stories, ideas and concepts that I really think take full advantage of our character base. It’s interesting, because DC was always built on a diverse product. You go back to the ’60s and the ’70s, you had war, horror comics, westerns, everything. Then we really focused on superheroes for a rather extended period of time. By doing crossovers like this, it plays to the strength of what superheroes are, but allows us to really broaden out the type of story we tell with it.

We’ve had a lot of success with other companies crossing over, but doing these all in-house, with such an array of characters, is a lot of fun. Honestly, if Warner Bros. didn’t own the Hanna-Barbera characters, we’d probably try to do these anyway. That’s how much these characters resonate with the folks in the building.

Super Sons/Dynomut Special cover by Fernando Pasarin and Oclair Albert

It’s been a little more than two years since the initial announcement of DC’s Hanna-Barbera lineup — that day, there was certainly a lot of skepticism. Once they came out, I think people saw what they were, and were largely won over. Have you been surprised by how these books received, or is this pretty much what you expected and hoped?

It’s what I had hoped for. We’ve had mixed sales success, but I argue that if you sat down and read any one of these books, you can’t argue the quality and the care that’s been put into them. It’s a level of risk that we’re willing to take.

It’s been wonderful to work with the folks inside Warner Bros. — we actually have to negotiate these within Warner Bros. itself, this isn’t something we just can do arbitrarily. Diane Nelson was integral in helping us bring the Hanna-Barbera library over to the DCU. There’s a lot of respect put into every one of these characters and stories. We love the opportunity to really do what we do with our own characters — find the core of what makes these characters great, what people remember most, and find a way to contemporize the world around them.

The approach to every one of these stories is, it’s a DC comic with Hanna-Barbera characters in it, as if they belong in that world. I think that just naturally makes the artists and writers approach it in a different style and sensibility. That makes this a really fresh take on this type of story.

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Garfield Leaves Jon and Joins the Circus in Homecoming Miniseries

Garfield Leaves Jon and Joins the Circus in Homecoming Miniseries

BOOM! Studios’ latest Garfield comic sees the titular lasagna-loving cat leaving Jon Arbuckle’s house and joining the circus — depicted in an art style that’s a definite departure from Jim Davis’ classic look for the characters. CBR has the first details.

Garfield: Homecoming is a four-issue June-debuting miniseries written by Scott Nickel, cartoonist of the comic strip Eek! and a veteran of multiple Garfield comic books at BOOM! Studios, with a different artist joining for each issue. Issue #1 will be illustrated by Sara Talmadge, who previously collaborated with Nickel for a story in the Garfield 2016 Summer Special.

RELATED: Judd Winick Lives Out a Childhood Dream: Writing and Drawing Garfield

Here’s the official description, from the publisher: “Feeling mistreated and unappreciated by Jon, Garfield embarks on a journey for a new home and, along the way, meets up with a clown who works in an old-timey travelling circus. Convinced that this is the place for him, Garfield becomes part of the act. Wait. What is that cannon for?”

“We’ve told some incredible Garfield stories at BOOM! Studios, but we’ve never taken Garfield this far outside his comfort zone — both literally and metaphorically,” BOOM! Studios Editor Whitney Leopard said in a statement. “In-between all the crazy adventures and trademark Garfield humor, the heart of this story is one that readers of all ages can relate to — the search to find that place where you fit in and feel like you can truly call your home.”

Andy Hirsch and Sarah Talmadge illustrated the main cover for Garfield: Homecoming #1.

“I’ve always loved Garfield and getting to take him on an all new adventure with Scott and the team at BOOM! Studios was such a thrill,” Talmadge said. “Garfield’s taking on the circus with his usual sass and legendary appetite… But can he be the new star act that the circus needs? Every page in this issue was a total blast to draw (I mean, what’s more fun than the circus?), and I hope you enjoy it too!”

BOOM! Studios has published Garfield comic books since 2012, as part of its all-ages imprint, KaBOOM!. Garfield: Homecoming #1 is scheduled for release in June — here’s the first look at interior art from the issue:

The post Garfield Leaves Jon and Joins the Circus in Homecoming Miniseries appeared first on CBR.

EXCLUSIVE: Marcos Martin Joins Image’s The Weatherman on Covers

EXCLUSIVE: Marcos Martin Joins Image’s The Weatherman on Covers

Eisner Award-winning artist Marcos Martín has joined the team on Image Comics’ recently announced sci-fi adventure series The Weatherman, providing “B” covers for the first arc, to accompany series artist Nathan Fox’s “A” covers. CBR has the first look at Martín’s cover for issue #1, scheduled for release on June 13.

“Nathan and I couldn’t be more excited to welcome the brilliant Marcos Martín, who along with Nathan will be contributing covers for the first arc of our new sci-fi adventure series The Weatherman,” series writer Jody LeHeup told CBR. “Marcos’ cover concepts and illustrations are some of the best in comics and his cover to WM #1 is proof. Can’t wait to share what else he has up his sleeve!”

Marcos Martín’s cover B for The Weatherman #1.

RELATED: Image Comics’ Full Image Expo 2018 Announcements

The Weatherman was one of more than 20 new Image Comics series announced last month at Image Expo 2018 in Portland. Here’s the official synopsis: “Local weatherman and fun-loving amnesiac Nathan Bright was just a normal guy living the good life on terraformed Mars. But the past Nathan didn’t know he had comes back to murder him when he’s accused of carrying out the worst terrorist attack in human history — an event that wiped out nearly the entire population of Earth.”

The Weatherman also features colors by Dave Stewart, design by Tom Muller, letters by Steve Wands and is edited by Sebastian Girner, LeHeup’s co-writer on Image’s Shirtless Bear-Fighter! (and the writer of Scales & Scoundrels).

Keep reading CBR for more on The Weatherman.

The Weatherman #1 main cover by Nathan Fox.

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DC Unveils ‘Edgy’ Black Label Imprint with DeConnick, Miller & More

DC Unveils ‘Edgy’ Black Label Imprint with DeConnick, Miller & More

DC Comics will expand even further later this year with its “Black Label” imprint, announced today by the publisher. It’s stated aim, according to the official press release, is to provide “premier talent the opportunity to expand upon the canon of DC’s iconic superhero comic book characters with unique, standalone stories that are outside of the current DC Universe continuity,” and the initial lineup of books will include new stories starring DC’s Trinity of Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman.

Creators announced for DC Black Label’s launch slate include Frank Miller, John Romita Jr., the fan-favorite Batman team of Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo, and Bitch Planet co-creator Kelly Sue DeConnick, in her first major work for DC Comics since a three-issue stint on Supergirl in 2011. Previously announced projects Superman: Year One, by Miller and Romita, and the John Ridley-written The Other History of the DC Universe, will both be released under the Black Label banner. An artist has not yet been named for The Other History of the DC Universe.

RELATED: Oscar Winner to Explore ‘The Other History of the DC Universe’

DC Black Label will launch in August with the debut of Superman: Year One, a three-part series. Mark Doyle, Executive Editor of DC Comics’ mature readers imprint Vertigo, will also oversee DC Black Label.

“DC Black Label offers leading writers and artists of any industry the opportunity to tell their definitive DC stories without being confined to canon,” Doyle said in the announcement. “We are carefully crafting each series to fit the vision of the creative team. All of these creators are masters of their craft. I’m psyched to be working on a Wonder Woman story with Kelly Sue and Phil [Jimenez], helping to bring John’s vision of The Other History of the DC Universe to life and reuniting with some of the greatest Batman talents in the industry.”

It’s not specifically stated in DC’s announcement that any Black Label books will be labeled as for “mature readers,” but the words “edgy” and “provocative” are used, and it’s said the new comics will have a “sense of sophistication.” Along with that, it’s said each book will have its own distinct format and release schedule (details still to come), and Black Label books will sport a separate logo, seen in the images accompanying this article.

In the announcement, DC named Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns, Darwyn Cooke’s DC: The New Frontier, Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s Batman: The Killing Joke and Moore and Dave Gibbons’ Watchmen as inspirations for the line. Each featured stories of DC Universe superheroes, other than Watchmen — though Watchmen characters have now intersected with the DCU as a result of Geoff Johns and Gary Frank’s currently unfolding Doomsday Clock.

“Many of our perennially best-selling, critically acclaimed books were produced when we unleashed our top talent on standalone, often out-of-continuity projects featuring our most iconic characters, a prime example being Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns,” DC Co-Publisher Jim Lee said. “Creating DC Black Label doubles down on our commitment to working with all-star talent and trusting them to tell epic, moving stories that only they can tell with the highest levels of creative freedom.”

RELATED: Superman: Year One: John Romita Jr. Reveals New Details

Along with Superman: Year One and The Other History of the DC Universe, DC Black Label will include Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons from Kelly Sue DeConnick and Phil Jimenez, a three-book series that spans “from the creation of the Amazons to the moment Steve Trevor washes up on the shores of Paradise Island.” Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo, fresh from even series Dark Nights: Metal, will re-team for Batman: Last Knight on Earth, taking place in a “strange future, villains are triumphant and society has liberated itself from the burden of ethical codes.” Snyder first discussed the series this past October at New York Comic Con, with Batman: White Knight‘s Sean G. Murphy attached as artist at the time.

The Joker team of Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo will reunite for Batman: Damned, featuring a team-up between Batman and John Constantine, following the Joker’s apparent death. Writer Greg Rucka will return to Wonder Woman for Wonder Woman: Diana’s Daughter (working title), which tells the story of “a young woman seeks to reclaim what has been forgotten” in a hopeless world.

As DC Comics has stressed that these stories are “outside of the current DC Universe continuity,” it’s easy to draw comparisons to Elseworlds, the publisher’s outside-continuity imprint that ran from 1989 to 2003 and included famous stories such as Batman & Dracula: Red Rain and Superman: Red Son.

Here’s the official initial lineup for DC Black Label, along with synopses from the publisher:

Superman: Year One by Frank Miller and John Romita Jr.:

“A groundbreaking, definitive treatment of Superman’s classic origin story in honor of his 80th anniversary. This story details new revelations that reframe the Man of Steel’s most famous milestones—from Kal-El’s frantic exile from Krypton, to Clark Kent’s childhood in Kansas, to his inevitable rise to become the most powerful and inspiring superhero of all time.”

Batman: Last Knight on Earth by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo:

“Batman wakes up in a desert. He doesn’t know what year it is or how The Joker’s head is alive in a jar beside him, but it’s the beginning of a quest unlike anything the Dark Knight has undertaken before. In this strange future, villains are triumphant and society has liberated itself from the burden of ethical codes. Fighting to survive while in search of answers, Bruce Wayne uncovers the truth about his role in this new world—and begins the last Batman story ever told.”

Batman: Damned by Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo:

“On a deserted Gotham City bridge, a body is found. Whispers spread the news: Joker is dead. But is this a dream come true or a nightmare being born? Now Batman and DC’s outlaw magician John Constantine must hunt the truth through a Gotham City hellscape. The city’s supernatural recesses are laced with hints about a killer’s identity, but the Dark Knight’s descent into horror will test his sanity and the limits of rationality, as he must face a horror that doesn’t wear a mask.”

Wonder Woman Hisoria: The Amazons by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Phil Jimenez:

“A Homeric epic of the lost history of the Amazons and Queen Hippolyta’s rise to power. Featuring monsters and myths, this three-book saga spans history from the creation of the Amazons to the moment Steve Trevor washes up on the shores of Paradise Island, changing our world forever.”

Wonder Woman: Diana’s Daughter by Greg Rucka (no artist yet announced)

“It’s been 20 years since the world stopped looking to the skies for hope, help, and inspiration. Now the world keeps its eyes down, and the powers that have risen have every intention of keeping things that way. Amongst a scattered, broken resistance, a young woman seeks to reclaim what has been forgotten, and on the way will learn the truth about herself, her heritage, and her destiny.”

The Other History of the DC Universe by John Ridley (no artist yet announced)

“A compelling literary series analyzing iconic DC moments and charting sociopolitical gains through the perspectives of DC Super Heroes who come from traditionally disenfranchised groups, including John Stewart, Extraño, Vixen, Supergirl, Katana and Rene Montoya, among others. At its core, the story focuses on the lives of those behind the costumes, and their endeavors to overcome real-world issues. It isn’t about saving the world, it’s about having the strength to simply be who you are.”

The post DC Unveils ‘Edgy’ Black Label Imprint with DeConnick, Miller & More appeared first on CBR.

IDW Editor-in-Chief and CCO Chris Ryall Exits Publisher

IDW Editor-in-Chief and CCO Chris Ryall Exits Publisher

IDW Publishing Editor-in-Chief and Chief Creative Officer Chris Ryall has left the San Diego-based company after 14 years, as confirmed by Ryall Wednesday on Twitter.

The news was first reported by The Beat, who add that Ryall’s exit was “entirely of his own volition.” Ryall announced the news in an email to staff, which is excerpted on The Beat.

RELATED: Ryall, Rodriguez Reveal the Sci-Fi Inspiration Behind Onyx

“I’m stepping aside to take a break, get off the never-ending-deadline train and see what new challenge makes the most sense as my next move,” Ryall wrote. “It might seem short at times, but 14 years is a long time to do anything — I’ve certainly never done anything else in my life for this amount of time.”

Ryall joined IDW as Editor-in-Chief in June 2004, taking over from Jeff Mariotte as the second person to hold that position at the publisher. In 2010, Ryall was named the company’s first-ever Chief Creative Officer, while retaining the position of EiC. In 2016, David Hedgecock was promoted to IDW Editor-in-Chief, but Ryall was named EiC once again in Nov. 2017, with Hedgecock moving to Associate Publisher. Those shifts were part of an overall restructing at IDW, with co-founder and CEO Ted Adams stepping down as publisher, and company president Greg Goldstein taking on the role.

In Ryall’s time at IDW, the company became distinguished for its acclaimed use of licensed properties, most notably Hasbro franchises including Transformers, My Little Pony and G.I. Joe. IDW has also seen success with original titles such as Locke & Key, and archival projects including the Artist’s Edition line. In 2010, Diamond Comic Distributor named IDW a “premier” publisher along with Marvel, DC Comics, Image Comics and Dark Horse Comics, at the time the first publisher to receive that distinction since the category was introduced in 1996.

Ryall has also written a number of comics at IDW, including Zombies vs. Robots, illustrated by Ashley Wood, and co-writing ROM with Christos Gage.

In his letter to staff, Ryall indicated plans to remain involved in the comic book industry, though it’s not yet known what his next move may be.

“Through it all — through the deadline craziness, market fluctuations, assorted business challenges, social-media storms, new faces, new projects, and new challenges — it’s all served as a constant reminder how lucky I’ve been to contribute to this industry that I love so much,” Ryall wrote. “And I plan to keep making contributions outside these walls.”

On Twitter, Ryall indicated that he may have more to say publicly about the news, writing, “We’ll announce things properly soon.”

This news comes in the same day that IDW PR Manager Steven Scott was departing the company, in order to focus on his writing career.

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ECCC: Marvel: Next Big Thing Panel

ECCC: Marvel: Next Big Thing Panel

It’s Sunday at Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle, and Marvel wrapped its convention programming with the “Next Big Thing” panel, featuring several of its high-profile creators filling in fans at the Washington State Convention Center on the latest in their books.

On the panel: Creators Donny Cates, Charles Soule, Kris Anka, Ed Brisson, Matthew Rosenberg and Jacen Burrows, X-Men books editor Darren Shan and Marvel talent relations’ Rickey Purdin, serving as moderator.

RELATED: ECCC: Make Mine Marvel Panel with North, Stohl, Zub and More

Cates started the panel by talking about his upcoming plans for Venom, confirming that it will be Eddie Brock starring in the book, but the story may be something darker than fans are expecting. Moving to Cosmic Ghost Rider, Cates said it was the “craziest thing that I’ve ever done.

Soule talked the upcoming Hunt for Wolverine one-shot, the follow-up to 2014’s Death of Wolverine, which will be written by Soule and illustrated by recent Defenders artist David Marquez. That leads to four separate miniseries, which “will have different sections of the Marvel Universe looking for [Wolverine].”

Adamantium Agenda is an action-adventure story Soule called something of a nostalgia play, as it stars many of Wolverine’s former New Avengers co-stars. Claws of the Killer is a “straight-up horror book.” Soule said Mystery in Madripoor is “not a romance book, but it doesn’t shy away from the legacy Wolverine has with people like Storm, for example.” Weapon Lost, written by Soule and illustrated by Matteo Buffagni, is a detective story.

Burrows talked his work on Moon Knight with writer Max Bemis, saying the book has been “fun to cut loose with.” “It’s really fun to draw people punching each other,” Burows said.

On Runaways, Anka talked collaborating with series writer Rainbow Rowell, who found fame as a young adult novelist. Anka said Rowell grew up reading comics, so she “didn’t miss a beat.” Anka said it’s been a true partnership on the book, “Our hands are in everything together.”

Brisson discussed Old Man Logan and Iron Fist. Old Man Logan will see the title character “trying to cope,” and almost going into semi-retirement. He’s looking to “figure out where he fits in the Marvel Universe,” especially with the original Wolverine back.

In Iron Fist‘s issues tying-in to the “Damnation” crossover, the series will see “Danny roped into the casino battle royale,” and include some unexpected “deep-dive characters.”

Turning to Punisher, Rosenberg said the arc starting in issue #224 will see Frank Castle, in the War Machine armor, coming back to New York City. “Frank Castle now has that taste for bigger game in that armor,” Rosenberg told the crowd. “He’s in New York, hunting what was previously out of his weight class. But the heroes of New York are not happy to see him. Frank’s not a hero, and to people like Carol Danvers, this is not OK. Luke Cage does not think this is OK. Daredevil does not think this is OK. It’s a who’s who of the best of the Marvel Universe trying to pry the armor off of him.”

Rosenberg then moved to the New Mutants: Dead Souls miniseries, illustrated by Adam Gorham and Michael Garland, which debuts on March 14. “It’s a little different than I think people have been getting from X-Men books lately,” Rosenberg said. “They’re not exactly superheroes. They’re investigating paranormal events.”

Rosenberg dismissed the idea that since something is a miniseries, that means it doesn’t “matter.” “Status quos are changing in big ways,” the writer said of Dead Souls. “There are going to be a lot of other cameos and surprise appearances. It’s a really wild roller coaster. It’s this strange, conspiracy, creepy, slow-build, horror adventure book. It’s not like anything else I’ve ever done.”

Transitioning to fan Q&A, the first question was how Wolverine will fit in with Laura Kinney established as Wolverine, and Old Man Logan still a major part of the Marvel Universe. “I will say that the minis are focused on the hunt for Wolverine,” Soule said, but they’ve been keenly aware from the start of how All-New Wolverine and Old Man Logan have been received, and they’ve been discussing since then how best to handle the situation.

RELATED: ECCC: DC Universe Panel with Williamson, Bennett, Tynion and More

In another question on Hunt for Wolverine, a fan asked how Wolverine will react to find out that the universe has been rewritten as a result of Secret Wars. “That happened to every character in the Marvel Universe,” Soule answered. Comics being comics, there are a lot of things you have to be, ‘OK, that happened, I can’t dwell too much.’ I think he’ll wake up and be surprised to hear about all the things he missed. It would be fun just to write him reading the news while he was dead.”

Following Bendis’ talk earlier at this convention of his desire to see a Marvel/DC crossover at some point, a fan asked the panel what they would like to see from such a story. “I personally would like to see Thanos vs. Darkseid, so we can put that one to bed,” Cates said. “I would like to see Darth Vader versus Superman,” Soule added. “That’s a bridge too far, too. But wouldn’t it be fun?” Anka may have had the most compelling pitch: “Karolina and Nico go shopping with Starfire and Raven.”

Next question concerned Cosmic Ghost Rider, with Cates asked about the origins of the character. “I really wanted to do this book called Ghost Rider: Herald of Galactus,” Cates said, adding that he was met with skepticism, especially with the added layer that Frank Castle would be Ghost Rider. “When Jordan White offered me Thanos I got to this beat, I knew I needed essentially a herald of Thanos. I was trying to figure out who that would be, if it was going to be one of the Black Order — then I was like, I have this character! I have this galactic rider thing! I put it in the pitch.”

“I just embraced the ’90s of it all,” Cates continued. “People really responded to it. Punisher fans are not wild about Frank being this goofy sellout, but I really like it. I have him tattooed on my arm.”

In the last question of the panel, a fan asked what Marvel character they’d most like to work on. Rosenberg: Said he wants to write a core X-Men book. Cates: “I want to write Thor.” Brisson named Speedball — because he wants someone to deliver on the potential of the character.

“I’ve had a Stilt-Man pitch — greenlit — for like two years,” Soule said. “It fits in Daredevil. But it’s so dumb, it might end all of this. So I have yet to decide to do this.” Soule said his less goofy answer is Captain America.

Catch up with all of CBR’s coverage from Emerald City Comic Con!

The post ECCC: Marvel: Next Big Thing Panel appeared first on CBR.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Marks 25 Years with Anniversary Special

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Marks 25 Years with Anniversary Special

Twenty-five years ago, it was Morphin Time for the first time, and BOOM! Studios will celebrate the quarter-century anniversary with June’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Anniversary Special one-shot, announced Saturday at Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle. CBR has details.

The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Anniversary Special is set to commemorate 25 years since the original Power Rangers series debuted on Fox Kids back on Aug. 28, 1993, along with paying tribute to some of the Ranger teams that followed. Creators contributing to the comic include Magdalene Visaggio (Kim & Kim, DC Comics/Young Animal’s upcoming Eternity Girl), Joe Quinones (America, Howard the Duck), Sina Grace (Iceman, Self-Obsessed) and Marcus To (Guardians of the Galaxy, DC’s upcoming Justice League: No Justice miniseries).

RELATED: Shattered Grid Puts Every Power Ranger, Including a New One, in Peril

The issue, announced Saturday afternoon at the BOOM! Studios: Discover Yours panel, will have covers by mainstay Buffy the Vampire Slayer cover artist Steve Morris, plus variants by Rahzzah and Joe Quinones.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Anniversary Special main cover by Steve Morris

“The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Anniversary Special is a love letter to the characters and teams that have deeply affected so many lives around the world,” BOOM! Studios editor Dafna Pleban said in a statement.

“In addition to the show, we’ve been able to continue to create incredible, fresh experiences for fans, like this anniversary comic book special with amazing writers and the great team at BOOM Studios, to celebrate these aspirational yet relatable teen heroes who really inspire people,” Brian Casentini, the Executive Producer of the Power Rangers franchise, is quoted in the announcement.

2018 looks to be a busy year all around for BOOM! Studios and the Power Rangers, with the “Shattered Grid” event slated to start in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #25 by writer Kyle Higgins and artist Daniele Di Nicuolo, scheduled for release on March 28. “Shattered Grid” is set to introduce a new Power Ranger and will involve several of the teams across franchise history, and runs through both the main Mighty Morphin Power Rangers ongoing series and Go Go Power Rangers.

The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Anniversary Special is scheduled for release in June.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Anniversary Special variant cover by Rahzzah

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ECCC: Make Mine Marvel Panel with North, Stohl, Zub and More

ECCC: Make Mine Marvel Panel with North, Stohl, Zub and More

Marvel took the stage at Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle on Saturday afternoon with the “Make Mine Marvel” panel, featuring some of the publisher’s current creative talent talking the latest at the House of Ideas. It’s Marvel publishing’s first major convention panel since some major developments at the company, including Brian Michael Bendis leaving Marvel for an exclusive deal with DC Comics, and C.B. Cebulski taking the reins as Editor-in-Chief.

In attendance: Ryan North (Unbeatable Squirrel Girl), Margaret Stohl (Captain Marvel), Jeremy Whitley (Unstoppable Wasp, Thor Vs. Hulk: Champions of the Universe), Jim Zub (Avengers: No Surrender, Champions), X-Men office editor Darren Shan, and Marvel talent manager Rickey Purdin serving as moderator.

RELATED: ECCC: DC Universe Panel with Williamson, Bennett, Tynion and More

Turning to the currently ongoing Marvel “Fresh Start” announcements, Stohl talked the Carlos Pacheco-illustrated The Life of Captain Marvel, which she called a look at both Captain Marvel and Carol Danvers’ origin stories. “We’re telling a new context for the things you already understand have happened,” Stohl said. “This is a really, really fun collaboration. I worked really closely with Joe Quesada, I worked with Steve Wacker, who was the editor on the initial Captain Marvel reboot. I worked with Sana Amanat, who is my editor, and Axel Alonso, when he was still there. We had a summit specifically for this character, and we really, really dug in. It’s a deeply personal story. It is a family story.”

North talked Squirrel Girl, including an upcoming standalone issue where Squirrel Girl and Nancy get stuck in time, and a four-issue arc where Squirrel Girl and Kraven go to a superhero-themed escape room. “It will end up with some characters getting arrested,” North said. “And not just Kraven. It’s going to be a lot of fun. The Kraven arc, in a way, feels like a culmination of everything that’s come before.”

Zub expressed happiness that, due to the Avengers: Infinity War release date moving up a week, the last issue of “No Surrender” will be out the same week as the film. “It’s huge, it’s amazing, with tons of characters,” Zub said. “This storyline’s going to mark the end of this era of Avengers, as we clear the board, metaphorically and literally in some cases.”

Whitley talked the comiXology-exclusive Thor Vs. Hulk: Champions of the Universe, which was conceived to spiritually tie-into Thor: Ragnarok. He was told, “We want to do something with them, go for it.” “We wanted to do something that was a competition,” Whitley said. “The idea was to go and big and crazy as possible, and we did it.” The print collection is out this month. “You get that fun, goofy version of Thor that you see in Thor: Ragnarok, and the classic Hulk that everybody knows and loves and talks in monosyllables.”

RELATED: Chris Claremont Returns to the X-Men for Colossus and Kitty’s Wedding

Shan talked the latest from the X-books, specifically X-Men Blue, which will see Magneto put together a new team including Polaris, Daken, Jimmy Hudson and others, and X-Men Gold: “I don’t know if you guys have heard, but Kitty Pryde and Colossus getting married.” Shan mentioned the X-Men Wedding Special, which includes a story from legendary X-Men writer Chris Claremont — though he wouldn’t specify what Claremont’s story would be.

Speaking of the recently wrapped Generation X, Shan divulged that Jubilee is no longer a vampire as of that series’ end. “I think people have been waiting for a really long time for, I guess you could call it, factory settings Jubilee,” Shan said.

Moving to fan Q&A, the first attendee up at the microphone asked Stohl about the difference between writing a novel and a comic. “Novelists, when they start writing, we just write way too much talking, and we write way too much of everything,” Stohl said. “Basically, you would get back your pages, and they would be covered with speech balloons, over all the beautiful pictures. Then you go through and pop your own balloons, basically. You learn to write it like poetry, basically — you boil everything down.”

North said the main difference he found is that in comics, the “main unit” is the page — ending it with something to earn a page turn. “When you’re writing prose, it’s the end of a chapter.”

Next question asked about exploring supporting characters. “With Wasp, I got to have a lot of fun creating supporting characters for her lab,” Whitley said, especially juxtaposing the teenage girl characters with Jarvis.

A fan in a Squirrel Girl costume had, as you may guess, a question for North, specifically about writing for the younger-skewing audience of Unbeatable Squirrel Girl. “I draw a distinction between ‘all ages’ and ‘for kids,'” North said. “The secret is, everyone keeps their clothes on, and no one swears, and you’re good.” Stohl added that North himself has a “Squirrel Girl heart.” “That works for him because he has an all-ages heart,” Stohl said. “My heart is black and withered, so it’s much tougher for me.”

The next fan asked about the panelists’ starts in comics. North talked his background in the long-running webcomic Dinosaur Comics, saying he originally just thought he was just doing a funny comic about talking dinosaurs, not thinking it would lead to anything. “Here’s my secret plan,” North said. “I did Dinosaur Comics for a decade, and one of my readers grew up and started working at a comic book company. I really recommend anyone to put your work online.”

Last question was for Whitley: “If you had the opportunity to kill off any Marvel character, in the whole Marvel Universe, who would you kill off and how?” “This is a side-step of that question, but it’s always been my opinion that I think here are more interesting and more terrible things to do a character than killing,” Whitley answered. “Every character, if they’re really well-made, there’s a thing you can do to them that’s going to hurt more than killing. Dying is not a huge deal for Captain America. He would gladly die for the cause. Failing is a big deal for Captain America.”

Zub added that a teased death for the Human Torch was never about actually fooling the reader that the character — who was appearing in other comics — might be killed off, it was about the way the other characters would react upon thinking he was dead. “The reader’s aware of more, but that’s OK,” Zub said. “The characters aren’t.”

Keep reading CBR for more from Emerald City Comic Con!

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ECCC: Vertigo/Young Animal Panel Details Sandman Universe and More

ECCC: Vertigo/Young Animal Panel Details Sandman Universe and More

DC Comics made news earlier this week with the announcement of The Sandman Universe, a line of four comics inspired by the seminal Neil Gaiman-written Sandman series. It’s a safe bet that’ll be a topic of discussion on Saturday at Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle, with the “Vertigo – At the Center of Modern Storytelling” panel, also slated to include a focus on the Young Animal imprint.

In attendance: creators Jody Houser, Joshua Williamson, Ibrahim Moustafa and Vertigo Executive Editor Mark Doyle.

CBR is there live, so keep hitting refresh for the latest details.

RELATED: DC Comics, Neil Gaiman Announce The Sandman Universe Imprint

Doyle started the panel by talking current series Imaginary Fiends, by Tim Seeley and Stephen Molnar; and Motherlands by Si Spurrier and Rachael Stott. “It’s a crazy science-fiction series, but at the heart of it is family drama,” Doyle said of Motherlands.

Williamson talked the recently launched Deathbed, illustrated by Riley Rossmo. “We wanted to do a book that’s about storytelling in general, also a little about legacy,” Williamson said about the series. “We started having these conversations, if you were on your death bed, what would your last words be?”

“As a writer, I think you should know the end of your story when you’re starting out,” Williamson continued. “But if your life is a story, how can you know the ending?” The comic stars a character named Antonio Luna, who doesn’t believe his life story is over yet — sparking a new adventure.


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