Thursday, August 25, 2016

CGC and Valiant introduce custom label at Baltimore Comic Con

CGC and Valiant Unveil "THE FUTURE OF VALIANT" Custom Label

Debuting at Baltimore Comic-Con 2016

from the official Baltimore Comic Con and Valiant Entertainment press releases . . . . . .

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 25, 2016 - The Certified Guaranty Company (CGC) and Valiant Entertainment have teamed up to create Valiant's first-ever custom art CGC label, spotlighting the slate of characters behind the award-winning publisher's upcoming "FUTURE OF VALIANT" wave of new series and prestige-format projects. Featuring artwork by Valiant-exclusive artist Diego Bernard(X-O ManowarNinjak) and strictly limited to just 500 pieces, this limited-edition certification label will make its debut on-site at Baltimore Comic-Con on September 2nd and will be made available for encapsulation as an add-on feature when grading any Valiant title past or present during Baltimore Comic-Con.

Customers will be able to purchase "THE FUTURE OF VALIANT" custom label in CGC's Blue Universal Designation for an additional $5 fee at CGC's Baltimore Comic-Con booth (#901) or online while supplies last.

Featuring long-time Valiant icons, including Faith, the Harbinger Renegades, and Bloodshot alongside the publisher's next ascendant superhero stars, like Generation Zero, Savage, and Divinity, Valiant's first-ever CGC label is the latest celebration of the upcoming "FUTURE OF VALIANT" publishing slate, which was first announced with an exclusive live broadcast from New York's renowned Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in May.

Spanning seven series in total, "THE FUTURE OF VALIANT"
is an all-new wave of ongoing series, prestige format projects, and standalone events from a star-studded roster of some of comics' most visionary talents - each introducing an innovative array of new concepts and characters...and firmly establishing Valiant's place as the premier publisher of creative storytelling in comics today:
  • Faith #1 by Jody HouserPere Perez, & Marguerite Sauvage in July
  • Generation Zero#1 by Fred Van Lente & Francis Portela in August 
  • Britannia #1 (of 4) by Peter Milligan & Juan Jose Ryp in September
  • Bloodshot U.S.A. #1 (of 4) by Jeff Lemire & Doug Braithwaite in October
  • Harbinger Renegades #1 by Rafer Roberts & Darick Roberston in November
  • Savage #1 (of 4) by B. Clay MooreClayton Henry, & Lewis LaRosa in November
  • Divinity III: Stalinverse #1 (of 4) by Matt Kindt & Trevor Hairsine in December
"THE FUTURE OF VALIANT" custom label marks the second collaboration between Valiant Entertainment and CGC, following on from the success of the VALIANT x CGC REPLICA VARIANT SERIES - a first-of-its-kind line of shelf covers spotlighting the heroes of the Valiant Universe in printed reproductions of CGC's trademark grading cases with artwork by acclaimed artists Clayton Henry(Harbinger Wars) and Pere Perez (Faith).
Plus, only at Baltimore Comic-Con: Visit Valiant at Booth #2008 to join the celebration of the 1,000,000th copy of X-O Manowar sold since the series' 2012 debut with the X-O MANOWAR 1,000,000th COPY COMMEMORATIVE SEAL! Fans who purchase or provide copies of X-O Manowar #49 (any cover) at the Valiant booth will be afforded the opportunity to have their copy embossed with an official Valiant 1,000,000th copy seal - designed in honor of X-O Manowar's legendary achievement and forever commemorating a new milestone in Valiant history - free of charge!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Local Comic Store featured on popular podcast

Local comic store  CAPTAIN BLUE HEN COMICS in Newark, Delaware was recently featured on a popular podcast.


In aCover170x170 solid 44 minute interview with co-owner Joe Murray,  GAME SET MATCH covers the early days of the store, the transition from original owner to current owner, and some highlights in store history.

Of particular interest is Joe Murray’s thoughts on the glut of variant covers and the resulting negative effects on distribution and comics retailing, as well as a good argument for regular readers to use the PREVIEWS catalog and pre-order through their local comics stores.  

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On the home page, select Episode #3 from August 13, 2016 =  The Rundown #15, Part 1

Honor Jack Kirby's birthday with a donation to HERO INITIATIVE


Kirby4heroes header 2016


The Hero Initiative creates a financial safety net for comic creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work. Since inception, the Hero Initiative has been fortunate enough to benefit more than 50 creators and their families with over $950,000 worth of much-needed aid, fueled by your contributions! It’s a chance for all of us to give back something to the people who have given us so much enjoyment.

     Several local comic shops are helping to raise funds through various promotions this weekend.  Here’s a preview of some of them . . . . . . . .

FROM CAPTAIN BLUE HEN COMICS   280 East Main Street,  Newark DE 302-737-3434 . . . . .

 Honor The KING by Paying it Forward!

Jack Kirby's 99th birthday is August 28th
Kirby 4 Heroes wants to honor the KING by raising money for the HERO INITIATIVE to benefit comic creators in need.

CBH wants to step up and has a bunch of goodies including promo items and treasures from the back room that we're offering for donations. We ask that you consider adding a buck or two to your total to help the cause & we're working on more fun ideas to bring the KRACKLE to KIRBY's memory.


FROM THE COMIC BOOK SHOP   1855 Marsh Road,  Wilmington DE 302-477-1119  . . . . .

Saturday August 27th  &  Sunday August28th

Kirby 4 Heroes: SILENT AUCTION in honor of JACK KIRBY!

Signed Comics! Prints! Posters! Graphic Novels!

Proceeds Benefit HERO INITIATIVE 

Kirby4Heroes Hero Initiative


Video blog Part 2: Publishing Comics

from the official Aazurn Publishing press release 

A glutton for punishment, I’m still vlogging! Publishing Comics Blog, Episode 2, with Gary Scott Beatty: Networking Works! Click here!

What do you want me to talk about? If you like, share with friends. If you don’t like, I want to hear that too! PLEASE COMMENT at the video!

Today’s freebie! (Not mentioned in the vlog — just here!)
The very first issue of Deadworld is now free at DriveThru Comics! Before The Walking Dead there was Deadworld. A supernatural plague has been unleashed on the world — but this is no standard zombie story. Art by Vince Locke (Vertigo)! Mature audiences, from Caliber Comics, download here.

Be sure you’ve ordered Indie Comics #2 at your favorite local or online comic shop! August’s Previews won’t be around much longer! Here’s the handy order number for IC#2 — AUG161046.

And, lastly, does using the word "vlog" make me sound like a dork?

Gary Scott Beatty
Possible Dork
Aazurn Publishing

Make a friend for life! Pass this illustrious email on to others so they can join the Fan List at and get in on the fun!

Writer GREG PAK to sign new work at Delaware COMIC BOOK SHOP 8/27


from the official Comic Book Shop web site . . . . . . 

The Comic Book Shop!
Week of August 24th, 2016

This weekend is full of excitement!
Bring a friend and have some fun :]

GREG PAK Signing Saturday 11am-1pm!

Storewide 25% off SALE Saturday & Sunday!

Silent Auction Fundraiser Friday - Sunday!

Meet superstar writer GREG PAK on
Saturday 8/27 from 11am - 1pm!

@GregPak is known for the monumental series Planet Hulk and it's follow up World War Hulk.

Pak is also known for making New 52 Action Comics actually good, a passionate and too-brief Storm series, and Making Comics Like The Pros, an instructional reference
with Fred Van Lente & Colleen Coover.

He also co-created with artist 
Takeshi Miyazawathe Marvel character Amadeus Cho,
a Korean-American supergenius teen and now the Totally Awesome Hulk!

Greg is kicking off his creator-owned series

a tale of Chinese gunslinger searching for his wife in an Old West overrun with magic! 

Monday, August 22, 2016

Actor Michael Rowe (Headshot) joins Baltimore Comic-Con

from the official Baltimore Comic-Con press release . . . . 

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 18, 2016 - September 2-4, 2016 sees the return of the Baltimore Comic-Con to the Inner Harbor at the Baltimore Convention Center. The Baltimore Comic-Con is excited to announce our next guest, Arrow's DeadshotMichael Rowe.  
For decades, Floyd Lawton was a name that was only known to avid comic book fans. That's no longer the case, as Floyd Lawton and his alter-ego Deadshot are now known to millions of people around the world, thanks to Michael Rowe's charismatic portrayal of the anti-heroic Suicide Squad leader on the hit CW series Arrow.
A native of St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada, Michael's first passion in life was music. But after ten years as songwriter and drummer for the metal/punk band  Bucket Truck - who shared the stage with the likes of Green Day, Slayer, and D.O.A - Michael found himself at a crossroads. The breakup of his band sent Michael west to Vancouver where his brother Andrew was starting out as a filmmaker. Without any prior experience, Michael began producing and performing in short comedy films written and directed by his brother. Their 2012 short film Sleepy Stories became a film festival favorite, screening in Vancouver, Halifax, Whistler, and the Czech Republic.
Acting became a new passion for Michael and, after a year of honing his craft at Vancouver's Actor's Foundry, he broke through to mainstream success when he landed the recurring role of Deadshot in 2012. His background in comedy allowed him to bring a unique and darkly offbeat energy to his performance, which has led to his character becoming a fan favorite.
Michael continues to prioritize working on independent projects with his brother. He's set to produce and act in Andrew's debut feature film, which is currently in development.

"The CW has created an amazing universe, and Michael has helped to flesh it out even more than it already was," said Marc Nathan, promoter of the Baltimore Comic-Con. "We're excited to have him with us in 2016, and fans of DC's television universe will be too!"

Book Review: AURORA by Kim Stanley Robinson

 From the Goodreads site summary . . . . .  


 3.72  ·   Rating Details   ·  8,497 Ratings  ·  1,412 Reviews
A major new novel from one of science fiction's most powerful voices, AURORA tells the incredible story of our first voyage beyond the solar system. 

Brilliantly imagined and beautifully told, it is the work of a writer at the height of his powers. 23197269
Our voyage from Earth began generations ago.

Now, we approach our new home.

Hardcover466 pages
Published July 7th 2015 by Orbit
  OUR REVIEW OF AURORA . . . . . . . . .
  really liked it

     In AURORA, Kim Stanley Robinson tackles the concepts of multi-generational starships, an interstellar journey of light years beyond our solar system, and attempts to establish a human colony on new planets and moons. One of the facets I enjoyed most is the contrast between optimism and reality. Robinson is not afraid to raise questions regarding the feasibility of space travel and colonization. The crew face many challenges and setbacks. On one level Aurora serves as an engaging tale of survival and the human spirit. On another level it deals with psychological, social and political issues. The characters are very well developed, something I don't always find in a hard science fiction novel. Despite all the scientific, mathematical and technological details throughout the story, it's the characters I began to care about and that's what pulled me through the story. 

     I had consciously avoided Robinson's earlier works because of the hard science. I confess to becoming confused by details in some of his other works, and this caused me to lose interest. In AURORA it's still very much a part of the story, but it's blended in with the social interactions and is conveyed in a method that is easier to digest. I still needed to keep a dictionary handy while reading this, but I appreciated his command of the language and ability to write prefect descriptions of some highly complex actions.    

     Robinson must have amassed a giant pile of notes while writing AURORA. It's amazing how plausible he makes the most advanced concepts seem. 

     Almost the entire book is narrated by the artificial intelligence that controls the starship, which presents a unique point of view. The interactions between the ship and the chief engineer are fascinating and often amusing.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Kids Love Comics: Father-Daughter team at Baltimore Comic Con

Jimmy Gownley of Amelia Rules! Welcomes Daughter to Cartooning World at Baltimore Comic-Con

Amelia Rules!' Jimmy Gownley brings the next generation of comics to Baltimore Comic-Con with daughter Anna

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 20, 2016 - Come to the Baltimore Comic-Con from September 2-4, 2016 at the Baltimore Convention Center!
For years, fans have enjoyed the magnificent work of New York Times Bestselling Cartoonist Jimmy Gownley with Amelia Rules as well as his autobiographical tale The Dumbest Idea Ever, in which Gownley deals not just with the "How" of comics, but "Why" one creates them in the first place.
A new chapter in Gownley comic legacy will unfold at the Baltimore Comic-Con September 2-4, when 12-year old daughter Anna Gownley debuts with her new comic book, SECRETS, LIES, and REVOLUTION, an ambitious take on the classic Les Miserables, as told from the point of view of Gavroche. 
Anna has always loved to draw, saying, "Watching my dad make comics made me think it might be fun to try my own, and I was really inspired by reading the manga Les Miserables by SunNeko Lee and Crystal Silvermoon," adding that her tale originally started as a chapter book, but " dad suggested I try it as a comic which I thought was a better idea, since I was already drawing comics anyway." 
Father Jimmy Gownley wrote, drew, and published his comics at an early age as well, selling his first series, the musically inspired Shades of Gray, out of his locker at school. "Anna is much better than I ever was at her age.," states Gownley. "It would never have occurred to me to suggest one of my kids make comics, but seeing she had a knack for it, I was proud to support her however I could."
Mr. Gownley was inspired by many of the independent creators of the 80's and 90's, especially by greats such as Dave Sim, of Cerebus fame. As for Anna's inspirations? "My favorite comics are Sunny Side Up by Jenni and Matt Holm, the manga version of Les MiserablesPeanuts by Charles Schulz, and of course Amelia Rules!" (her father's book).
As Anna enters the comics publishing world, Jimmy is encouraged by the opportunities that lie ahead: "It's a totally different world from when I started. The Internet and computers in general have made comics so much more accessible as a creative outlet for kids."
Beyond creating comics, Anna thinks she has what it takes to sell her books. "I thought about selling comics ever since I started randomly making them in my notebooks, and now I finally get to!"
Jimmy is happy to see where Anna's talents and enthusiasm take her. "I'm really excited to see where Anna's generation takes this medium in the future. After I'm done with it, of course!"

Jimmy Gownley and Anna Gownley will be a part of the Kids Love Comics Pavilion at the Baltimore Comic-Con. KLC will feature over 30 different kid-friendly comics creators, as well as workshops and classes for young creators and comic fans. Along with an amazing list of all-ages comics guests, The Kids Love Comics Pavilion, sponsored by The School for Good and Evil series, is part of Baltimore Comic-Con's commitment to a family-friendly comic-con experience.


Saturday, August 20, 2016

New Book based on SHERLOCK HOLMES

From the official press release . . . . . 

Sherlock Holmes is back at Pro Se Productions, and this time he’s not alone.  Author Brad Sinor’s THE GAME’S AFOOT: A HOL
MESIAN MISCELLANY, a collection of Holmes related tales, is now available in print and ebook editions from Pro Se Productions.

“Holmes,” says Tommy Hancock, Editor in Chief of Pro Se Productions, “is not only one of the most iconic characters ever created, he is also one of the most complex.  This makes it possible to take a Holmes story in any direction possible, from continuing to walk in Doyle’s well regarded footsteps to going places and distances no one would ever imagine.  Combine that with the rich supply of supporting characters that have always been a part of Holmesian lore, as well as those who populate his place in time, and the field is ripe for wildly imaginative cases and adventures.  Brad Sinor delivers exactly that in THE GAME’S AFOOT, breaking many boundaries with Holmes and others, while still delivering tales that are reflective of the style we all love and the canon that so many adore.”

He solved cases others considered impossible. Those we know about. But there were other events taken on by the world’s best known detective and those he called friend as well as enemy that explored, encountered, and even exposed the impossible. And now those tales of terror and deduction are gathered together, stories that pit Sherlock Holmes and those around him against forces beyond mortal man, beyond even this planet. But also, let it not be forgotten that evil need not be supernatural to be truly horrific. TheGame’s Afoot: A Holmesian Miscellany is a collection of tales by author Brad Sinor that add a facet to the world inhabited by Holmes and characters both associated with him and those who had their own stories to tell. Action, adventure, terror, and mystery await readers as they follow Holmes and others into The Game’s Afoot: A Holmesian Miscellany. From Pro Se Productions.
Featuring an iconic cover by Jeffrey Hayes and cover design and print formatting by Antonino Lo Iacono, THE GAME’S AFOOT: A HOLMESIAN MISCELLANY is available now at Amazon at and Pro Se’s own store at for 15.00. 

This imaginative Holmes collection, a part of Pro Se's HOLMES APOCHRYPHA line,  is also available as an Ebook, designed and formatted by Lo Iacono for only $2.99 for the Kindle at and for most digital formats via Smashwords at


Thursday, August 18, 2016

Steve Engelhart joins Hero Initiative at Baltimore Comic Con

Hero Initiative Hits Baltimore Comic-Con with Special Guest Steve Englehart

EDITORS NOTE: Engelhart is one of our favorite Avengers writers, and is responsible for some classic tales involving the Vision, Scarlet Witch, Mantis and the Swordsman during the 1970’s.  

from the official Baltimore Comic Con press release . . . . . . . .

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 9, 2016 - September 2-4, 2016 sees the return of the Baltimore Comic-Con to the Inner Harbor's Baltimore Convention Center. Hero Initiative will be at the Baltimore Comic-Con, and is happy to bring classic writer Steve Englehart, best known as one of the original writers of Dr. Strange, which is being adapted as a major motion picture in a few months, to the con.  

Steve Englehart began his career as an art assistant to Neal Adams before shifting over to try his hand as a writer. Initially doing uncredited work at Marvel for Gary Friedrich on titles like Sgt. Fury and his Howling CommandosIron Man, and Incredible Hulk, his abilities were recognized and his writing career began in earnest with an issue of Monsters on the Prowl. His first run on a title was in Amazing Adventures featuring the X-Men's Beast in the spotlight.
He went on to become writer on runs of DefendersAvengersDoctor Strange, and Captain America, including memorable storylines like "The Avengers/Defenders War", "The Celestial Madonna", and "The Serpent Crown". He also created Shang-Chi, Master of Kung Fu, Nomad (initially as an alter-ego for Captain America), and he also provided the retcon to explain the 1950s Captain America and Bucky characters as separate individuals from Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes.

After leaving Marvel Comics, Englehart landed at DC Comics, writing Justice League, and Detective Comics (collected as Batman: Strange Apparitions in trade paperback), which relaunched Batman as a noir hero and firmly establishing Joker as a homicidal maniac. He would later write Green Lantern CorpsBatman: Dark Detective, and the Millenium crossover series.

Englehart would return to Marvel, working on such titles as West Coast AvengersFantastic FourSilver Surfer, and Vision and the Scarlet Witch. He is also a co-founder of Malibu's Ultraverse (later acquired by Marvel), writing The Strangers and The Night Man (which later became a syndicated television series).

In addition to his comics work, Englehart has worked as a novelist and animation writer during his career. 
Steve will be at the Hero Initiative booth all weekend. Look for him there.

"How very exciting to have Steve return to the Baltimore Comic-Con" said Marc Nathan, promoter of the Baltimore Comic-Con. "The Hero Initiative serves a critical role in the support of comics professionals in need. We respect and support their mission, and we're happy they're able to bring such a fantastic star along with them this year."


Details on VALIANT participation at Baltimore Comic Con 2016

from the official Baltimore Comic Con press release . . . . .

Valiant Blasts into Baltimore Comic-Con 2016 with Exclusives, Panels, Signings, and More!

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - August 18, 2016 - In just a few weeks, the most nominated publisher of the 2016 Harvey Awards is going above and beyond for its boldest Baltimore Comic-Con ever!
From Friday, September 2nd through Sunday, September 4th, Valiant Entertainment is taking over Baltimore Comic-Con 2016 - and they're bringing along a squadron's worth of convention-only exclusives, signings, programming, panels, and more!
All weekend long, join Valiant inside the Baltimore Convention Center at Booth #2008 and find out why Valiant has racked up an unprecedented 50 Harvey Award nominations by perusing a complete selection of Valiant trade paperbacks and deluxe hardcovers for critically acclaimed and award-winning titles including Bloodshot RebornDivinityThe ValiantX-O ManowarBook of DeathWrath of the Eternal WarriorFaith, and many more! 
But that's just the start of your Valiant Universe experience! For the entire weekend, Valiant will give away FREE complimentary copies of the Faith #1 Second Printing! Packed with the beginning of Faith's best-selling ongoing series debut and the bonus "The Future of Valiant" Sneak Preview flip book - spotlighting an all-new wave of ongoing series, prestige format projects and standalone events from the largest independent superhero universe anywhere in comics - you won't find a more exciting giveaway anywhere else!
And, available only in Charm City, don't miss the Generation Zero #1 Baltimore Comic-Con Exclusive Variant - featuring the awe-inspiring artwork of fan-favorite artist Wook-Jin Clark (Adventure Time)! Experience the latest "Future of Valiant" series here as New York Times best-selling writer Fred Van Lente(Archer & Armstrong) and blockbuster artist Francis Portela (Faith) deploy the breakout stars of Harbinger Wars into their most dangerous mission yet: high school!
Valiant is also offering fans at Baltimore Comic-Con 2016 the chance to join in the celebration of X-O Manowar (2012)'s 1,000,000th copy sold with the X-O Manowar 1,000,000th Copy Commemorative Seal. Fans who purchase or provide copies of X-O Manowar #49 (any cover) at the Valiant booth (#2008)will be afforded the opportunity to have their copy embossed with an official Valiant 1,000,000th copy seal - designed in honor of X-O Manowar's legendary achievement and forever commemorating a new milestone in Valiant history - free of charge!

Plus, get ready for signings throughout the weekend from an all-star cast of special guests, including writers Fred Van Lente (Generation ZeroArcher & Armstrong) and B. Clay Moore (Savage, Bloodshot)! And don't miss the boatload of Valiant merchandise sailing into Baltimore, including t-shirts featuring X-O ManowarBloodshotHarbingerArcher & Armstrong, and more!

The action continues on Friday, September 2nd at 2:30 p.m. in Panel Room #339-342 with Valiant 101: New Fans Start Here - a concise and fun-filled introduction to Valiant's biggest, most memorable characters! You seen the reviews, you've heard the buzz... Now find out why Valiant Entertainment has taken fans and critics by storm as the most acclaimed comic book publisher! Join us here for a one-of-a-kind introduction to the largest and most acclaimed independent superhero universe in comics! From X-O Manowar and Faith to Bloodshot Reborn and Divinity, get the stories behind Valiant's biggest heroes and find out where to jump on board right here with an in-depth tutorial that's perfect for new fans!

But that's not all! Peek into the unbelievable stories charging towards your favorite superheroes on Saturday, September 3rd at 1:30 p.m. in Panel Room #343-344 for Valiant: The Future of Valiant and Beyond! With a record-setting 50 Harvey Award nominations, Valiant Entertainment is the most acclaimed publisher anywhere in comics today. Now, find out what's next for powerhouse series like FaithGeneration ZeroBritanniaBloodshot U.S.A.Harbinger RenegadesSavage, and Divinity III: Stalinverse right here with an all-star cast of panelists including Fred Van Lente(Generation Zero) and B. Clay Moore (Savage)! The future of Valiant starts here with an exclusive round of news and announcements - only at Baltimore Comic-Con!

Harvey Awards Nominee Logo

Then, hang onto your ballots, because Valiant's weekend in Baltimore is going to hit the stratosphere on Saturday, September 3rd at 7:00 p.m. in the Hyatt Regency for the 29th Annual Harvey Awards! For the second year running, Valiant will attend the Harvey Awards as the single most-nominated publisher with critically acclaimed titles including Bloodshot RebornDivinityThe Valiant, and many more! With 50 nominations in nearly every category, including "Best Writer," "Best Artist," "Best New Series," "Best Continuing or Limited Series," "Best Single Issue," Valiant is once again leading the pack - and we want you there to celebrate with us!

Finally, stay tuned for a soon-to-be-revealed surprise from Valiant and the Certified Guarantee Company (CGC) that will make its official debut at this year's Baltimore Comic-Con!


 About The Baltimore Comic-Con

The Baltimore Comic-Con is celebrating its 17th year of bringing the comic book industry to the Baltimore and Washington D.C. area. For more information, please visit

About The Harvey Awards
The Harvey Awards are one of the comic book industry's oldest and most respected awards. With a history of over 20 years, the last 11 in conjunction with the Baltimore Comic-Con, the Harveys recognize outstanding achievements in over 20 categories. They are the only industry awards nominated and selected by the full body of comic book professionals. For more information, please visit