The GeeksverseNEWS Round-up | Week of March 15, 2014

NEWS Round-up | Week of March 15, 2014
Published on Saturday, March 15, 2014 by
Marvel and DC get bounced out of the Nielsen BookScan Top 20 in February, ShiftyLook closes its doors, Noah gets banned in the Middle East, Emerald City Comicon news and updates, the Flash is sighted in Vancouver, and more in this week’s News Round-up.
Marvel and DC post poor February graphic novel sales showings in bookstores, comics shops
Cassandra Jean's comics adaptation of Ransom Rigg's Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Yen Press) debuted at #17 on the BookScan charts.

The graphic novel adaptation of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children (Yen Press) by original author Ransom Riggs and artist Cassandra Jean debuted at #17 on the Nielsen BookScan charts.

Marvel and DC found themselves on the outside looking in when it came to February’s Nielsen BookScan Top 20 report on bookstore graphic novel sales, with no title from either publisher cracking the list—even “evergreen” DC-published favorites like Watchmen and Batman: The Killing Joke slipped out of the top 20.

As was the case for most of last year, bookstore graphic novel sales for the month were dominated by Image Comics’ The Walking Dead and Saga—the two series held down eight spots in the top 20 between them—and Kodansha Comics’ Attack on Titan, which scored six spots in the Top 20 by itself. Other publishers making an appearance in the February bookstore sales top 20 were perennial ranker VIZ Media (with Naruto, Vol. 64 at #3 and Bleach, Vol. 59 at #13), IDW Publishing (whose Locke & Key, Vol. 6: Alpha & Omega debuted at the #5 spot), BOOM! Studios imprint kaBOOM! (with the fourth Adventure Time trade paperback), Yen Press (with the OEL manga/graphic novel adaptation of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children), and Dark Horse Books (with the library edition of Avatar: The Last Airbender—The Search).

The industry’s “Big Two” posted slightly less dismal results in comics shops, with no Marvel or DC title making the top five of Diamond Comics Distributors’ recently-released list of bestselling graphic novels in the direct market for February 2014.

ShiftyLook effectively shuts down
WonderMomoVol1

Despite ShiftyLook’s closure, the UDON Entertainment-published Wonder Momo: Battle Idol, Vol. 1 by Erik Ko, Jim Zubkavich, and Omar Dogan is still set to go on sale this April.

ShiftyLook—a subsidiary of Namco Bandai Games, Inc. devoted to showcasing webcomics based on its older video game properties and serving as a platform for their development into webtoons, graphic novels, video games, and other merchandise—will cease updating its site on March 20, with the server shutting down for good in September. Despite its effective closure, the previously announced Wonder Momo, Bravoman, Katamari, and Galaga books will still come out as planned and the Wonder Momo anime will remain available for viewing on Crunchyroll and YouTube until further notice. WayForward Technologies’ development of a new Wonder Momo video game is also set to continue. [That game better have variable difficulty settings. The original Wonder Momo arcade game was brutal!—ed.]

Comics scribe Jim Zubkavich (Skullkickers, Samurai Jack), who worked on ShiftyLook’s Wonder Momo, Bravoman, and Klonoa projects, offered his reflections on the announcement on his blog, describing ShiftyLook’s staff as “incredibly supportive and hard working” people who “gave the creative teams brought on board lots of latitude to create the stories we wanted to tell.”

All of us here at the Comixverse wish to offer our sympathies to all employees affected by ShiftyLook’s imminent closure.

Censors sink Noah in UAE, Egypt, other territories

noah-01Noah, the film based on the graphic novel interpretation of the Abrahamic flood myth by Darren Aronofsky, Ari Handel, and Niko Henrichon, has been banned in certain countries in the Middle East two weeks prior to its wide international release. The United Arab Emirates’ National Media Center explained that it is banning the film because it “contradicts Islam and the Bible.” Other moral and religious institutions in the region have objected to the film as well.

Traditional Islam has a strong tradition of “aniconism” which forbids the creation of images of sentient beings, and this belief is particularly adhered to when it comes to portrayals of religious figures. (As in the Hebrew Bible and the Christian Old Testament, Noah is also a prominent figure in the Qu’ran.) The film has also generated controversy in the United States from conservative and fundamentalist Christian groups who disagree with the film’s interpretation of the flood myth, leading to Paramount Pictures issuing a lengthy disclaimer with all marketing materials related to the film.

Written by acclaimed filmmaker Darren Aronofsky (The Wrestler, Black Swan, The Fountain) and screenwriter Ari Handel (The Fountain) with art by Niko Henrichon (Pride of Baghdad), the Noah graphic novel was originally published in French in 2011 by Franco-Belgian comics publisher Le Lombard. The English language edition of Noah, published by Image Comics, is set to hit stores on March 19, 2014. The film adaptation of the graphic novel is set to go on wide-release on March 28, 2014 and stars Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, Anthony Hopkins, Emma Watson, and Ray Winstone.

Is this your local comics shop?

Three-time Eisner Award winner for comics journalism Tom Spurgeon walked into an unnamed comic book shop and came away with some observations: (a) The staff, while friendly people, weren’t all that knowledgeable about comics; (b) Marvel’s panoply of Avengers titles and its habit of renumbering and relaunching books makes for a very confusing state of affairs on the shelves; (c) the store didn’t carry Image Comics’ Saga, a curious business decision to say the least [maybe that’s why everybody’s buying Saga in bookstores instead, see the story that we led with at the top of this article—ed.]; (d) the comics in the back-issue bins seemed overpriced.

Unfortunately, Supergeon’s description sounds like it could fit any number of comics shops we’ve seen.

Avengers_glut

According to Tom Spurgeon, Marvel’s constant launching, relaunching, and renumbering of its Avengers-branded comics makes for a confusing glut of titles on store shelves.

On Tove Jansson, creator of the Moomins

Mark Bosworth’s extensive retrospective on Tove Jansson, the late creator of the popular children’s picture book and comic strip characters the Moomins, is a must-read. It details how the Finnish writer-artist’s family, her experiences during World War II, and her romantic relationships  influenced the stories of the Moomins. 2014 marks the centenary of the Finnish writer-artist’s birth. Below is an excerpt from the BBC Magazine piece:

[Jansson] said that she had drawn the first Moomin after arguing with one of her brothers about the philosopher Immanuel Kant. She sketched “the ugliest creature imaginable” on the toilet wall and wrote under it “Kant”. It was this ugly animal, or a plumper and friendlier version of it, that later brought her worldwide fame.

Cometmoominland“[World War II] had a great effect on Tove and her family. One of her brothers, Per Olov, was in the war. They didn’t know where he was, if he was safe, and if he was coming back,” says Boel Westin, a friend of Jansson’s for 20 years and a Professor of Literature at Stockholm University.

Jansson’s first Moomin book—The Moomins and the Great Flood—was published in 1945, at the end of this difficult and nerve-wracking period, with Comet in Moominland following soon afterwards.

“Tove’s anxiety and grief are embedded in the first two books. She was depressed during the war and this is mirrored in those books because they are about catastrophes,” says Westin.

“Writing a children’s book about a great flood is not so common. In the Comet book, Moomintroll and Sniff go on this journey to find out when the comet is coming and if it’s coming to Moominvalley.

“There are descriptions of creatures leaving their homes. Just like here in Helsinki, people were leaving their homes for fear of the bombs. She captured that and put it in her books.”

FinnFamilyMoominThe two books went largely unnoticed. Jansson’s breakthrough came in 1951, when her next book—Finn Family Moomintroll—was translated into English.

Two new characters—Thingumy and Bob—appear in the book. The pair represent Tove Jansson and a married woman, Vivicka Bandler, with whom she had a brief and passionate affair. Homosexuality was illegal in Finland at the time, so everything had to be kept secret.

“Thingumy and Bob are always together, walking hand in hand and they have a suitcase but they won’t tell anyone what is in it. It is just referred to as ‘the content’,” says Westin.

Inside the suitcase is a very big and beautiful ruby, a symbol of Tove and Vivicka’s love. The Groke—a large grey, ghost-like creature who freezes everything she touches—is a threat and chases the pair because she is also after love and wants the content.

“You could read this as being the lesbian love between Tove and Vivicka. They have their secret love in this suitcase, and when they open the suitcase and show it to the whole of Moominvalley it is also a picture of how they show their love to the world. It’s a really beautiful story,” says Westin.

Dynamite, DC, to publish Batman ‘66 Meets The Green Hornet

batman66-green-hornet-promoDynamite Entertainment and DC Comics are set to publish a new Batman/Green Hornet series set in the continuity of the 1960s Batman TV show that starred Adam West. Batman ‘66 Meets The Green Hornet will debut as a weekly digital comic on May 21 and will feature Kevin Smith (Daredevil, Green Arrow) and The Joe Schmo Show and Hollywood Babble-On host Ralph Garman on writing duties and Ty Templeton (The Batman and Robin Adventures, Age of Heroes) on art. A print edition of the comic collecting the weekly installments is scheduled to launch in June.

This actually marks the third time that the TV versions of the characters will meet, as the Green Hornet (played by Van Williams) and Kato (played by the late martial arts legend Bruce Lee) previously appeared in a cameo during the first season of the 1966 Batman TV series and again in full guest-starring roles in a special two-part crossover episode during Batman‘s second season.

International comic convention news and updates

Heidi McDonald has some very important advice for those looking to participate in the lottery for badges for this year’s San Diego Comic Con (July 24–27, 2014; San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, CA). The lottery for badges opens today (Saturday, March 15) at 9 AM Pacific Time.

Stan Lee had to cancel all of his Saturday appearances at the recently concluded Wizard World Sacramento convention due to illness, but rebounded on Sunday.

• Dark Horse Comics has revealed the exclusive cover variants it will have on hand for Seattle’s Emerald City Comicon (March 28–30, 2014; Washington State Convention Center, Seattle, WA). Check out the variant covers for Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10 #1, Serenity: Leaves in the Wind #1, Veil #1, and The Witcher #1 below:

Fans of Veil should note that writer Greg Rucka will be in attendance at ECCC. In addition, Buffy the Vampire Slayer interior artist Rebekah Isaacs will be on hand, as well as Serenity actress Morena Baccarin, whose likeness graces the Serenity: Leaves in the Wind #1 ECCC variant cover. The Witcher #1 ECCC variant cover artist Stan Sakai is also a guest at the convention, celebrating the 30th anniversary of his signature creation, Usagi Yojimbo. All proceeds from the sale of The Witcher #1 ECCC variant will go to a fund for the care of Sharon Sakai.

Each ECCC variant cover issue is priced at $5, with a strict limit of ten copies per person, per day. Only a limited number of copies will be made available for sale on each day of the convention.

The-Big-ECCC-Party-Flyer• In more Emerald City Comicon news, The Hero Initiative, Dark Horse Comics, Multiversity Comics, and Rock Bottom Brewery are teaming up to host The Big ECCC Party on Friday, March 28 at Rock Bottom Brewery’s Seattle location (1333 Fifth Ave., Seattle, WA98101, 206-623-3070). The party starts at 8 PM (21 years and older only please!) and there is an admission fee of $10, all of which will go to The Hero Initiative, a federally chartered non-profit corporation dedicated strictly to helping comic book creators in need.

The party will also host a separate raffle to benefit Stan and Sharon Sakai, who have had to face mounting medical expenses in recent months in connection with Sharon’s cancer diagnosis and treatment. In addition to Stan Sakai, other Dark Horse Comics creators attending the party include Greg Rucka (Veil), Matt Kindt (Mind MGMT), Gail Simone (Tomb Raider), Adam Warren (Empowered), Mike Norton (Battlepug), Richard and Wendy Pini (Elfquest), Michael Avon Oeming (The Victories), Colleen Coover (Bandette), Fred Van Lente (Brain Boy), Paul Tobin (Colder), Randy Stradley (Star Wars: Dark Times), Joshua Williamson (Captain Midnight), Rebekah Issacs (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Doug Wheatley (Star Wars: Dark Times), Joshua Hale Fialkov (Skyman), Bryan J.L. Glass (Furious), Tim Seeley (The Occultist), Frank Barbiere (The White Suits), and Christopher Sebela (Ghost).

To learn more and keep up to date about the event, check out the Big ECCC Party’s Facebook page.

Odds and Sods

More news links from around the world of comics and related media:

Kuroko_no_Basuke_Cover• Hirofumi Watanabe, the suspect in last year’s bizarre Kuroko’s Basketball death threat case [the developments of which we've previously covered here, here, and here—ed.], has admitted to the charges levied against him. Watanabe has also informed authorities of his plan to commit suicide once he is released from prison, so that “society can rest assured that [he] won’t do anything stupid again.” (Anime News Network)

Mattel wins lawsuit against writer Donald Glut over the rights to the characters and stories he wrote and co-created for the pack-in minicomics that came with the 1980s Masters of the Universe action figures. (Hollywood Reporter)

Serial con man Josh Hoopes has been found posing as “Samitra Banks” on Kickstarter. Hoopes has over a decade-long history of taking art from sites like DeviantART and misrepresenting it as part of his own portfolio in order to get commissions, hiring other artists to do the work, pocketing all the money for himself, and then disappearing without paying the actual artist. Spread the word. (Bleeding Cool)

Writer-artist Larime Taylor (A Voice in the Dark), who was born with arthrogryposis, shows how he draws comics. (Bleeding Cool)

• The Flash costume for the upcoming pilot of the TV series based on the DC Comics character revealed. (The Beat) Footage of the costume in action during filming of the pilot in Vancouver has also surfaced on YouTube:

• Jordan Yerman examines manga’s origins in Edo Period ukiyo-e woodblock prints and paintings. (Vancouver Observer)

English_Poster-for-The-Wind-Rises• Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic Wesley Morris reviews Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises, the Oscar-nominated animated film based on the director’s graphic novel of the same title. (Grantland)

Nominees for this year’s Osamu Tezuka Cultural Prize announced. (Anime News Network)

• Heidi McDonald conducts an in-depth and lengthy interview with IDW Publishing CEO Ted Adams on the occasion of the company’s 15th anniversary. (The Beat)

• A recent study in England found “a worrying cultural divide” with poor adults significantly less likely to read and more likely to watch TV than their more well-to-do counterparts. Also less likely to read: Younger adults, men, and those with lower levels of qualifications. A large minority of adults (18%, or almost 1 in 5 of the people polled) also claimed that they never read physical books. (BBC) [The report doesn’t go into detail about what kind of books were considered for the study, leading us to wonder if graphic novels counted in the study—ed.]

• This longform tell-all article by Chris Plante about what went wrong during the filming and production of the 1994 Street Fighter movie (the one with Jean Claude Van Damme and the late Raul Julia) is engrossing reading. (Polygon) [The movie might have been eight kinds of crap, but Raul Julia totally killed it as Bison—ed.]

cityedgeofforevercoverIDWIDW will publish science-fiction author Harlan Ellison’s original teleplay for the Star Trek episode “The City on the Edge of Forever” as a five-part serial graphic novel, set to debut in June. Ellison will be working on the book alongside co-writers Scott and David Tipton and artist J.K. Woodward. The version of “The City on the Edge of Forever” teleplay that actually made it to the small screen was one that was extensively rewritten by Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and the show’s team of writers. The episode originally aired in April of 1967 with Roddenberry’s version of the teleplay winning the 1968 Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation and Ellison’s original script landing that year’s Writer’s Guild of America Award for Most Outstanding Teleplay. (Entertainment Weekly) [What are the odds of this collaboration ending in another self-inflicted PR catastrophe for Ellison?—ed.]

Dynamite Entertainment to re-launch 1990s “bad girl” comics outfit Chaos! Comics as an eponymous miniseries, to be written by Hack/Slash‘s Tim Seeley. (Bleeding Cool)

• We’re not fans of the  “Ha ha, NERDS!” tone of Katie Rife’s article on how “an ass-crack gazing, Magic-playing rapper [created] the perfect storm of nerd humor and Internet outrage,” nor do we condone the practice of surreptitiously taking pictures of strangers for the purpose of mocking them on the Internet, but we have to admit, some of the pictures in the article cracked [sorry!] us up. (A.V. Club) [Just so we're clear, we're not engaging in any "fat-shaming" here... these guys just need some modicum of self-awareness and a basic lesson in how to dress appropriately when going out in public. Casually flashing ass-crack in public is not a good look, no matter one's weight or build. Also, belts are a thing—ed.]

A compilation of the week’s press releases

Straight from our inbox to your eyeballs, here’s a list summarizing the week’s notable e-mail press releases and assorted notes from our friends at BOOM! Studios and Dark Horse Comics:

BOOM! Studios, Cartoon Network sign “first look” deal

From the press release:

Cartoon Network Enterprises, the licensing and merchandising arm of the network, and BOOM! Studios are proud to announce a groundbreaking first look deal, the first agreement of its kind that the network has done in publishing. The partnership will give the award-winning comic book publisher the first option to license all-new Cartoon Network original comedies for adaptation into comics and graphic novels.

StevenUniverse_PromoLARGE

BOOM! Studios began its relationship with Cartoon Network Enterprises in 2012 with the release of the ADVENTURE TIME comic book series through its KaBOOM! imprint in February of that year. Since then, BOOM! has developed the franchise into a series of top-selling monthly releases, successful spin-off limited series, original graphic novels, trade collections, and collector hardcovers. Based on the top-rated Cartoon Network animated series of the same name, the ADVENTURE TIME comic has gone on to win an Eisner Award, multiple Harvey Awards, Shel Dorf Award, and back-to-back Diamond Gem Awards.

BOOM!’s second launch of a Cartoon Network property, REGULAR SHOW, debuted in April 2013 as the highest-selling title in the publisher’s eight-year history. Based on the Emmy® Award-winning Cartoon Network original series, the franchise includes a monthly comic series and a spin-off mini-series currently in progress, and collections and original graphic novels are planned for future release.

The new expanded partnership will allow BOOM! to work with Cartoon Network Enterprises to introduce new animated comedy properties to the comic book and book markets closer to the debut of each show.

The first property to be encompassed by this new partnership is STEVEN UNIVERSE. Created by Rebecca Sugar, STEVEN UNIVERSE is Cartoon Network’s newest original comedy series about a boy named Steven and a team of magical Guardians of the Universe, and it will debut as a monthly comic series in August. A sneak peek of the new title premiered within the ADVENTURE TIME 2013 SPOOOKTACULAR in October 2013. Additional properties along with creative team details will be announced at a further date.

Evil Empire #1 sells out at the distributor level, second printing with new cover announced

From the BOOM! Studios press release:

BOOM! Studios is excited to announce that EVIL EMPIRE #1, the exciting new series from Say Anything lead singer Max Bemis (POLARITY) and artist Ransom Getty (Guarding the Globe), has sold out at the distributor level. The publisher has rushed to a second printing.

Evil_Empire_1_2nd_Print_Cover

The second printing of EVIL EMPIRE #1 ships with a new cover by William Pyle and carries a retail price of $3.99 with a Diamond Code of JAN148324. It is anticipated to be in stores on March 24.

Dark Horse announces “Starting Points” program for retailers and fans

From the press release:

At this year’s ComicsPRO annual meeting, Dark Horse listened directly to retailer feedback on how to spark interest in monthly series, in hopes of bringing in new and lapsed readers. In June, Dark Horse begins the Starting Points program, a new way to dive into great ongoing series!

STPTS-LOGO-FNL

Each month, Dark Horse will highlight an issue in an ongoing or long-running series that is a great place for readers to try something new! Starting Points titles will be noted in Previews with a special logo and incentivized for increased orders.

June’s Previews will launch this program with two great ongoing series: Mike Mignola’s Abe Sapien and Captain Midnight, a key title in Dark Horse’s ever-evolving Project Black Sky line of books!

In Abe Sapien #13, the amphibious Abe is haunted by guilt over the staggering death toll in Arizona and vows to never let such horrors happen again—until a crazed healer and a frog-possessed teen block his path! If you haven’t been keeping up with Hellboy’s one-time partner, there’s never been a better time to get onboard with this ongoing series cowritten by Mike Mignola and Scott Allie, with art from Sebastián Fiumara!

Meanwhile, Captain Midnight #12 kicks off a brand-new arc! Reeling from the death of one friend and the betrayal of another, Captain Midnight throws himself into his work. Disillusioned with why he wears a costume, the time-traveling hero ponders what the world needs more of: the brawn of Captain Midnight or the brains of his civilian identity, genius inventor Jim Albright.

Dark Horse will offer retailers an additional 10% discount for orders exceeding 110% of the previous issue!

Look for one Starting Points title in the catalog each month, with evolving incentives and promotional support to help retailers bring new readers in to great Dark Horse series!

List of stores taking part in official “Hellboy Day” signing events released

From the Dark Horse Comics press release:

HBDAY FB IMAGEMarch 22 marks the twentieth anniversary of Mike Mignola’s career-defining release of Hellboy: Seed of Destruction #1. After the character’s somewhat humble beginnings in an eight-page feature in Dark Horse’s San Diego Comic-Con Comics special, Seed of Destruction would begin the long life of the beloved “beast of the apocalypse.”

In December, Dark Horse announced March 22, 2014, would be Hellboy Day, with events happening in comic shops around the world!

In addition to a slew of exclusive giveaways, Dark Horse has produced an all-new sampler comic featuring two classic Mignola tales, “The Ghoul” and “Another Day at the Office,” as well as two new stories by Mignola, Fábio Moon, and R. Sikoryak!

Additionally, as part of this special promotion, participating retailers were entered to win an original piece of art from Mike Mignola. This special honor goes to Hot Comics and Collectibles in New Hope, Minnesota!

Look for the Hellboy: The First 20 Years hardcover collection, on sale in comic shops everywhere on March 19! This deluxe oversized hardcover presents Mignola’s favorite covers and illustrations in gallery style, from his first drawing of Hellboy through twenty years of publishing.

See below for the list of stores hosting signings and events with the creators currently working in the Hellboy universe! Check the Dark Horse NewsFeed for a complete list of stores participating in this special anniversary celebration!

HELLBOY DAY EVENTS—Saturday, March 22, 2014

Mike Mignola—Meltdown Comics—Los Angeles, CA

  • 2 PM
  • Meltdown Comics: 7522 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90046, (323) 851-7223
  • Facebook Event Page

Tyler Crook, Dave Stewart & Scott Allie—TFAW—Portland, OR

  • 7 PM–10 PM
  • Things From Another World—Portland Location: 2916 NE Broadway Street, Portland, OR 97232, (503) 284-4693
  • Facebook Event Page

Duncan Fegredo, Laurence Campbell & Mick McMahon—Gosh! Comics—London, England

Art Baltazar—Aw Yeah Comics—Skokie, IL

Franco Aureliani—Midtown Comics—New York, NY

Tonci Zonjic—The Beguiling—Toronto, ON, Canada

Sebastián & Max Fiumara—Moebius Liceo—Buenos Aires, Argentina

  • 5 PM–10 PM
  • Moebius Liceo: Av. Santa Fe 2729, Local 13 P. Baja, 1425 Buenos Aires, +54 11 4866 6960
  • Facebook Event Page

Fábio Moon—Quanta Academia de Artes—São Paulo, Brazil

  • Quanta Academia de Artes: Rua Dr. José de Queirós Aranha, 246, Vila Mariana, São Paulo 04106-061, +55 11 3214-0553
  • Facebook Event Page

Dark Horse reveals teaser for new Dream Thief series, scheduled for June 2014 release

DREAMTHIEFESCAPETEASER

The first Dream Thief miniseries by writer Jai Nitz and artist Greg Smallwood was among our favorite comics of 2013. [Click here to read our review of Dream Thief #1—ed.]

Evan Dorkin satirizes comic book culture in this early, press-exclusive preview of the Eltingville Club one-shot

Eltingville Club goes on sale on 23 April, 2014 with a cover price of $3.99. Retailer FOC is Monday, 31 March, 2014.

Dark Horse announces Eye of Newt, a new miniseries from acclaimed fantasy artist Michael Hague

From the press release:

EONEWT HC CVRMagical adventure awaits as legendary illustrator Michael Hague takes readers on a strange and fantastic journey in Eye of Newt.

“Michael has been one of the best known fantasy artists for decades. His work is rich and vibrant and perfect for the comics medium.” Said Dark Horse President Mike Richardson. “I have long been a fan of his and I can’t express the excitement we feel here at Dark Horse at his first-ever graphic novel project.”

Gorgeously illustrated in the classic fantasy style, Eye of Newt, a four-part miniseries, is a must for young readers and new fans.

When Newt, a young wizard’s apprentice, embarks on a wonderful and perilous quest, he encounters marvelous creatures of all shapes and sizes and learns a dark secret that could shape his entire destiny!

Eye of Newt #1 is on sale in comic shops June 18. Preorder your copy at your local comics retailer today!

Dark Horse to publish Kickstarted comics projects from Dave Wachter and James Andrew Clark, Gail Simone and Jim Calafiore 

From the press release:

Coming to shelves this summer are two of Dark Horse’s hottest new titles, originally funded via Kickstarter: Dave Wachter and James Andrew Clark’s The Guns of Shadow Valley and Gail Simone and Jim Calafiore’s Leaving Megalopolis!

Dave Wachter (Night of 1,000 Wolves, Breath of Bones) and James Andrew Clark (Scar Tissue) began The Guns of Shadow Valley as a webcomic of western adventure and the supernatural. It was nominated for the Eisner Award for Best Digital Comic in 2010 and for the Harvey Award for Best Online Comics Work in 2011.

GOSV HC CVR

• Somewhere in Shadow Valley lies a secret that could forever change the frontier. Only a posse of gunmen with special abilities can defend that secret from a tribe of ghostly warriors, an advancing army led by a deranged colonel, and the perils of the valley itself.

Leaving Megalopolis, written by Gail Simone (Tomb Raider, Wonder Woman) and beautifully illustrated by Jim Calafiore (Aquaman), reunites the classic Secret Six creative team, with no holds barred!

LMEGA CVR

• When the caped heroes of the world’s safest city inexplicably turn into homicidal maniacs, no one is safe. The only rational thing to do is to get the hell out of town. If only it were that easy. A small group of terrified survivors make a desperate run for the city limits, chased by unspeakable evil!

The Guns of Shadow Valley is on sale August 13, and Leaving Megalopolis is on shelves September 10. Preorder your copies today!

In case you missed them…

• Don’t forget that we regularly post new previews of trade paperbacks and hardcovers.

• Guest contributor Jamie Owen posted a review of DC Collectibles’ Batman: Arkham Origins Deathstroke action figure.

• Troy takes a look at Hasbro’s retail offerings for the 50th Anniversary of G.I. Joe.

• Zedric looks at The Mire, Wasteland, and Stray Bullets in his article on the merits of “standalone issues.”

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