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Showing posts from January, 2013

Sneak Preview: CROSSED: BADLANDS by Garth Ennis

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                                        GARTH ENNIS TALKS ABOUT HIS RETURN TO HORROR WITH CROSSED: BADLANDS #25Although every title they publish is available in several variant covers, AVATAR PRESS does not ordinarily conduct big promotional campaigns or create huge crossover events to promote their books - - with one exception (C-Day).  While my first love is comics, I also have an interest in the marketing side of this business =  so I’ll share some of the information I obtained with our readers.  This article was assembled from the AVATAR  official press release, a Garth Ennis interview at BLEEDING COOL website, and WIKIPEDIA.The Second Annual C-Day this March will do more than just celebrate a year of publishing two issues of Crossed: Badlands every month on time... it will also mark the long-awaited return of the man who created Crossed, Garth Ennis! In the comics industry, no doubt you have heard the name.   Perhaps you think of his grueling reinvention of The Punisher for Marv…

Sneak Preview = upcoming CROSSED:BADLANDS art

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Courtesy of Avatar Press, here are some previews of the first four pages  (just art by Raulo Caceres, no lettering completed yet) of CROSSED: BADLANDS #25 coming out this March. If this lovely depiction of some scenes from Britain’s military history doesn’t whet your appetitive for this book, then how about this?  CROSSED: BADLANDS #25 begins a new story arc written by CROSSED creator Garth Ennis, and marks his first return to the title since the original creation of the series. I can’t wait to read the book and see how Ennis ties these scenes into the main story.  Look to this website in the coming days for more details and insights into this “ C-Day” event.

PGHHEAD PICKS 2012: WIZZYWIG = Best Indie Book

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WIZZYWIG: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL HACKER (Top Shelf, 2012 $19.95 hardcover 296 pages, black & white) Written and illustrated by Ed PiskorWhat began as a serialized web comic has been revised (and in some cases, redrawn) and re-packaged in a new 2012 hardcover edition of the high quality that we’ve come to expect from the folks at Top Shelf Comix. It also earns my vote for a 2012 PGHHEAD PICK as “Best Indie Book” of the year. During his years of collaboration with Clevelander Harvey Pekar on AMERICAN SPLENDOR comics and THE BEATS and MACEDONIA graphic novels, Pittsburgh cartoonist Ed Piskor developed an interest in phone phreaking and computer hacking. Based on his extensive research, he created a character, Kevin “Boingthump” Phenicle, who was a composite of several hackers that Piskor learned about or interviewed. He chronicled his adventures and faux biography in the original mini-comic called The WYSIWYG Technical Pamphlet, with the acronym standing for “What You See Is What You G…

Recent Readings: Horror, Myths and Heroes

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ALL STAR WESTERN #13, 14, 15 (DC): I picked this up because of the TOMAHAWK back-up feature that begins in Issue #13, but ended up appreciating the JONAH HEX main feature much more. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde sail to the Americas, and mayhem ensues. Dr. Jekyll’s formula is stolen and mistakenly sold through a carnival barker, as the major populace gets transformed into a raging crowd with a severe mad-on. In issue #13 the carnival clown embraces the dark side and has to be put down by Hex and hanger-on one-eyed Tallulah Black along with Dr. Arkham. There is a side plot involving the Golden Dragons and the Barbary Ghost, who proves much more interesting in this story than she did in her bland spotlight back-up feature many issues ago. In Issue #14 Dr. Arkham is induced to drink some of the formula and begins acting peculiar and very out of character. The massive Mr. Hyde escapes and Hex begins to track him down, now minus Miss Black who left with the Barbary Ghost with the promise of rec…

Previews for Wednesday 1/16/2013: Time To Get Ugly

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TODD, THE UGLIEST KID ON EARTH #1 of 4 (Image, January 2013) Story by Perker & Kristensen.  Written by Ken Kristensen.  Art & Cover by M. K. Perker.  Colors by Cemal Soyleyen. Letters & Logo by M. K. Perker. There’s been a bit of advance press about this book.  Sometimes that makes the critics a little skeptical.  I was fortunate enough to get an advance preview of Issue #1, so I could judge for myself.  This book may just live up to expectations.  It’s funny and deliberately so, in a time when many books that attempt to be humorous end up failing to even make me smile.  TODD coaxed several chuckles out of me. TODD, THE UGLIEST KID ON EARTH is irreverent and satirical, poking fun at suburban life in the United States, parenting, and social mores, among other things.  Would you buy a comic book version of the SOUTH PARK cartoon series?  This isn’t it - - but it’s the closest thing you can find in a comic  book format.   In the advance press release, co-creator Ken Kristense…

Advance Previews: CHANNEL EVIL - - tune in this March

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I missed picking up the CHANNEL EVIL min-series the first time around.  I saw that it was available for pre-order through the PREVIEWS catalog for March 2013.  I’m looking forward to reading this.from the official Double G Marketing press release . . . . . . . . .          Renegade Arts Entertainment is pleased to announce the release of CHANNEL EVIL TRADE PAPERBACK, collecting the four issues of Alan Grant’s (Judge Dredd, Batman) and Shane Oakley’s (Albion, Cthulhu Tales) horror miniseries.  This deluxe paperback collection also includes a new, never-before-seen strip, An Evening with Ba’al, written by Grant and illustrated by D’Israeli (Neil Gaiman’s Sandman, Future Shocks).            Inspired by Alan’s encounter with something from the dark edges of consciousness, CHANNELEVIL follows Jez Manson, a local TV chat show host ready to exploit everyone in a bid to make the big time.  After watching a successful medium channel a benign spirit, Jez invites her on his show, ready to ridicu…

BUSINESS NEWS: Superman stays put

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On the surface it might appear as if this ruling reveals that the family/estate of Siegel made yet another bad deal as regards the rights/ownership of this iconic character.  At least, it appears that they will (or have) received some money($4 million is a bit better than the original deal back in the 1930’s).  On the upside, regular readers of Superman will continue to be able to read new adventures every month without interruption as the ownership stays with Warner Bros./DC Comics.  I can’t imagine the Siegel family starting up their own comics company with Superman as the flagship title, then searching for a creative team, etc.   Had they won this appeal, most likely they would have put the Superman properties up on the market to the highest bidder.  You can read the full story of the court ruling here . . . . .  http://social.entertainment.msn.com/movies/blogs/paralleluniverse-blog.aspx?feat=dd275de1-0430-45ce-ab86-4ad4df9c274fas well as all the other news sites that will most lik…

Indie Comics Horror gets some 2012 award nominations

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INDIE COMICS HORROR Volume 1, Issue #1  (Aazurn Publishing, Winter 2012)For more than a year now, INDIE COMICS MAGAZINE (http://www.indiecomicsmagazine.com/) has been providing a showcase for “the best story and art from independent comic book creators.” Sold almost exclusively through pre-orders at local comic book stores, the success of the flagship title has made it possible to add this second title, dedicated to the horror genre. INDIE COMICS HORROR is a somewhat smaller version of its brother/sister title, with 48 pages in black and white and focusing on the works of six separate creative teams. This is a high-quality endeavor, and has been nominated for The Horror News Network’s 2012 Horror Comic Award. (http://www.horrornewsnetwork.net/) and also the 2012 Ghastly Horror Awards.  (See related article in January 2013 BC archives. ) To read a complete review of this issue, click the link below . . . . . . . . . . .  . http://namelessmag.jasunni.com/2012/12/26/visual-frights-equal-…

PGHHEAD PICK for Best of 2012: HARBINGER

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**********   Every single one of the Valiantcharacter revivals in 2012 was excellent. I cannot say the same for all of the revived DC and Marvel titles of 2012 - - likewise for the other comics companies whose books I read last year. So, Valiant was my choice to select as a “pick” for 2012 - - but which book ? That was a tough choice. While X-O MANOWAR was an early frontrunner, HARBINGER started out amazing and just got better with each issue. So, my PGHHEAD PICK FOR THE BEST REBOOT OF 2012 is HARBINGER. **********If you have over-looked this title you are missing one of the most engaging and different books among the current choices. Valiant is wisely putting out the first-story arcs of their new titles in affordable $9.99 trade paperback editions. Lucky you!  The HARBINGERVolume One trade paperback (Issue #1-5, “Omega Rising”) hits comic store shelves tomorrow! HARBINGER provides an adventurous exploration of all aspects of enhanced mental abilities through the way that various char…

HORROR IN COMICS: Vote in the 2012 Ghastly Awards

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Fan and Creator Voting will be open from January 1 through January 31, 2013 for the 2012 Ghastly Awards. The nominees, which were chosen by the entire comic creating community, reflect the wide range of horror material being published in print and web form today.Named after acclaimed creator “Ghastly” Graham Ingels, the awards are now in their second year.  The categories include Best Ongoing Title, Best Mini-Series, Best One-Shot, Best New Series, Best Anthology, Best Original Graphic Novel, Best Archival Collection, Best Writer, Best Artist, Best Inker, Best Letterer, Best Colorist,  and Best Web Comic. Also up for nomination to the Hall Of Fame are Al Feldstein & Bill Gaines, and Bernie Wrightson. To cast your ballot for your favorites, please go to http://ghastlys.blogspot.com/p/2012-voting.htmlI’m going to vote, even though I have not read every single selection in each category.  In the interest of fairness, I’m not going to suggest here what I think are the best of the best…

DIGITAL-ONLY THRILLS: EDISON REX

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EDISON REX (Monkeybrain Comics, 2012)      Issues #1-5 available through www.monkeybraincomics.com  and www.comixology.com Written by Chris Roberson. Art by Dennis Culver. Colored by Stephen Downer. Lettered by John J. Hill. After decades of reading comics, I sometimes wonder why I still pursue this hobby. Please don’t misunderstand me. I love this form of artistic expression and the power of text and art working together to create a linked visual and mental impression. It’s a remarkable way to tell a good story, and a method that originated in the United States. I still follow comics because when it works right it can’t be beat - - - and when that happens I can never get enough of it. EDISON REX has it working. After all these years, are there any elements that the best comics (the ones that I have the highest opinion and favored memory of) seem to have in common? Well for one, they need to be entertaining. Sometimes the writers use symbolism to make a statement or leave a message. …

PGHHEAD’S PICKS 2012: Edgar Allan Poe, wormy remix

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I simply didn’t get to read enough in 2012 to come up with a longer list of picks as in previous years.  However, I will be spotlighting some of last year’s works that I feel are deserving of another look and/or more recognition, such as . . . . . . . . .EDGAR ALLAN POE’S THE CONQUEROR WORM  (Dark Horse, November 2012):  Adapted by Richard Corben  (writer, artist, inker, colorist).  Lettering by Nate Piekos of Blambot.  In my opinion, this is the BEST STAND-ALONE, SINGLE ISSUE STORY  of 2012. (At least, among all the books that I read last year). Corben takes Poe’s classic poem and moves forward from there, elaborating, enhancing and adding to the imagery from this morbid reminder of the inevitability of death.   Corben sets his adaptation in the 19th century American West and adds a background story of arrogance, greed, betrayal, murder and deception that weaves its way throughout the template that Poe laid down.  Any fan of Poe or classic horror need to pick up this book.A longer, d…