The Comixverse staffers list their personal picks for the most interesting news stories of NYCC 2013.
Couldn’t make it out to the New York Comic Con this year? Neither could we! But that’s not going to stop Zedric, Nick, and Joe from discussing the NYCC 2013 announcements and news stories that they found personally interesting. And for even more armchair NYCC analysis from the team, make sure to read the following articles:
- News Round-up | The NYCC 2013 Edition
- Leaving Proof 204 | Robert Kirkman: Mission Accomplished?
- From the Fan’s Desk | Pre-ranking the upcoming “All-New Marvel NOW!” premieres
- Maximum Articulation | Thoughts on Hasbro’s NYCC Reveals (or “What the #$@! Happened to Optimus Prime?”)
NYCC didn’t really have an equivalent to SDCC’s “Batfleck” moment, a singular announcement that had the press and community buzzing for days and weeks on end, but it wasn’t lacking for significant stories. I, for one, appreciated the fact that the Con was so much more about a celebration of comics rather than a rollout and a whetting of fan appetites for comic book movies, as SDCC has turned into in recent years.
Anyway, I’ve already written at length about what I believe is the most important narrative to emerge from NYCC here, so I won’t belabor that particular point. Instead, I’ll take this opportunity to list, in no particular order, the announced comic book launches from the event that I’m most looking forward to.
- Nathan Edmondson and Mitch Gerads’ The Punisher (Marvel): I’ve made no secret of the fact that I’m a huge fan of this creative pairing’s work on the Image Comics-published military series The Activity, and it’s been maddening waiting for the next issue in the series as their joint output was reduced to a relative trickle over the past several months as they each tackled individual projects. I do think that Garth Ennis set a very high bar for recent approaches to the character of the Punisher with his work on the MAX imprint’s The Punisher (particularly in the issues where he was paired with artist Goran Parlov), but if there’s a creative team that can conceivably strike the same balance of slam-bang, balls-to-the-wall action and measured commentary on the nature of crime and armed conflict as Ennis/Parlov, it’s the duo of Edmondson and Gerads. I’d much rather the news coming out of NYCC was of more The Activity coming, but in lieu of that, I’ll take them on “The All-New Marvel NOW!” Punisher.
- Alan Moore, Mick Anglo, and Garry Leach’s Miracleman #1 (Marvel): There’s probably no way that the Warrior magazine/Eclipse Comics Marvelman/Miracleman stories will live up to the mythic reputations they’ve gained in readers’ minds over the years, primarily because of the intrigue that’s built up around them via the long-standing legal battle over their ownership involving such comics personalities as Moore, Dez Skinn, Alan Davis, Neil Gaiman, and Todd McFarlane, and the fact that these stories have been so long out of print and difficult to find at a reasonable price. Still, anybody who’s read or heard their favorite superhero comics creators gush about Miracleman as one of the most influential superhero titles in the post-Bronze Age comics era should be interested in checking out at least the first issue of the reprint series, due out in January of next year.
- Sanya Anwar’s 1001 (self-published): Not really a comic book that was launched at NYCC—the first two issues have been available for free download for a while, and Anwar was actually nominated for the Gene Day Award for Self-Published Comics in this year’s Joe Shuster Awards—but I feel compelled to spread the word about this creator-owned project after seeing more of her work on Bleeding Cool‘s NYCC coverage. 1001 is Anwar’s “reimagining of the life of Scherezade, the cunning heroine of the original tale ‘One Thousand and One Arabian Nights’—caught between political intrigue by day and a mad, murderous king by night, Scherezade must use her wit and wild imagination to survive.” Check out the comic and the pin-ups here and tell me if Sanya Anwar isn’t a talent deserving of wider recognition.
- Greg Rucka and Toni Fejzula’s Veil (Dark Horse): Greg Rucka’s first-ever creator-owned project for Dark Horse features—no real surprise here—a female protagonist but I can’t really complain. Between Whiteout‘s Carrie Stetko, Queen & Country‘s Tara Chace, Lady Seneca Sabre of Lady Sabre and the Pirates of the Ineffable Ether, Eve Carlyle on Lazarus, and his work writing DC’s Wonder Woman and Gotham Central (featuring characters such as Renee Montoya and Maggie Sawyer), it’s clear that writing female leads in action-packed tales is the four-time Eisner Award-winner’s particular quirk and strength.
- David Lapham’s Juice Squeezers (Dark Horse): How can anyone not look forward to a comic book about “a covert group of tweens who form the main line of defense for the residents of Weeville against an army of giant bugs. The only ones who can fit into the cramped subterranean battlefield, the aptly named Juice Squeezers keep the endless swarm of bugs from overrunning the city.” It’s like Robert Heinlein’s Starship Troopers meets The Goonies!
‘Sup ya’ll? Since I pretty much exhausted my venom sacs this week venting over the NYCC reveal of TF4 Optimus Prime, I will try to keep this contribution as cheery and positive as possible. Like our venerable editor Zedric has noted, it was very refreshing to see that this ‘Con remained focused on the world of comics publishing, and much less upon the Hollywood element that seems to have so much sway at SDCC nowadays.
Probably of little surprise to anyone, readers and staff included, the reveal that made me most excited comics-wise was IDW’s announcement of a new Transformers/G.I. Joe series. I have always been a fan of these crossovers, especially the Devil’s Due mini-series’ published earlier in the decade. While typically not the most fleshed-out, character-driven plot lines, the nostalgic ’80’s child in me can’t help but be mesmerized by seeing two of my favorite toy/cartoon/comic properties occupy the same panels in a book. The most exciting part of this announcement to me is that the series will be ongoing, not just a four or six issue self-contained book with minimal continuity and zero opportunity for long term story arc and character development.
I will be the first to admit that my taste in comics is far from sophisticated, but sometimes that lack of sophistication allows me to find joy in the hobby where others find frustration or displeasure. In the case of Transformers/G.I. Joe books, I can celebrate the inherent coolness of Cobra Commander wielding Megatron and busting caps like O-Dogg from Menace II Society. This is also of course giving minimal thought to the fact that there is no way in hell Cobra Commander could sufficiently hack a Cybertronian neural matrix to allow such commandeering to occur, or that a 30 foot robot can turn into a pistol operable by a human being. I will be interested to see how the writers reconcile the plot of this book with continuity established in their existing titles for both properties.
On the action figure side of things, I would like to reiterate that I am completely stoked for the Marvel Legends series being released for both The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Of particular import to me is the Ultimate Green Goblin build-a-figure, which to my knowledge is the first time this version of the character has been released in a 6-inch format. This guy is going to look rad beating the piss out of my various Spider-Man figures. Also, regarding the reveal of the new Black Cat figure, I need to clarify some statements made in this week’s Maximum Articulation. I firmly believe that it is completely normal and healthy for a grown man to have a crush on an action figure. It’s not my fault you people can’t comprehend the love she and I share, and if you don’t like it you can kindly go fly a kite. And if you tell my wife any of this, I will find you and beat you with a rubber hose. I rest my case.
Well for me, it has to be all the glorious announcements from DC… OK i really cant type that with a straight face. Not to bash DC, but I feel like the books have just lost their quality and none of DC’s big NYCC announcements—a new weekly Batman series (seriously?), the death of Superboy—threaten to change that impression. For the artists and writers, I hope it gets better.
As for the topic at hand, there were a few things that caught my eye. Marvel’s announcement of a February 2014 relaunch of New Warriors has me interested. Minus Night Thrasher, I really loved that title when it launched many years back. [You’re not alone in your dislike for Night Thrasher. The late Dwayne McDuffie hated the “mysterious black guy on skateboard” trope Marvel had going on back in the day so much that he wrote a sarcastic pitch for a “Teenage Negro Ninja Thrashers” series to editor Tom Brevoort that has now passed into industry legend. Also, Night Thrasher was originally going to be named “Black Thrasher” but McDuffie successfully campaigned to get the name changed before the comic saw print—ed.] It’s great to see Vance Astrovik (a.k.a. Justice, a.k.a. Marvel Boy) back in action along with the failed New Universe’s sole survivor Speedball. And adding Scarlet Spider to the team was a terrific idea. While he might not be the world’s most popular character and his solo series is coming to an end, he does have his fans. Its good to see Marvel found a spot for him.
The exodus of Betty and Veronica as Archie’s love interests is an interesting one. I’m sure it wont be permanent, but I am interested to see what it brings. Will they go with some racial diversity this time, or something else? Time will tell.
On the toy front, I agree with Nick, the new Amazing Spider-Man 2: Infinite Legends figures look stellar (minus Electro, I’m just not feeling the design).
Oh, and Mattel snuck in a pink repaint of Battleground Teela’s sword in the display case shown at NYCC, leading many to speculate that Queen Angella from She-Ra: Princess of Power is going to be revealed as the next figure in their subscription-based Masters of the Universe Classics line.
As a nod to the Archie news, I leave you with this classic scene from The Simpsons: