Showing posts from 2015

New Artist Edition: Jack Kirby's THE MIGHTY THOR

From the official press release .....

San Diego, CA (December 21, 2015) – IDW Publishing is pleased to announce Jack Kirby’s The Mighty Thor Artist’s Edition—the very first Marvel Comics Artist’s Edition to feature Kirby’s work. This mammoth 15” x 22” hardcover collection includes classic complete stories from Journey Into Mystery #111, #117, #118, and other stories, plus a beautiful gallery section by Kirby, the undisputed King of Comics.

"I've had the great pleasure of working with one of the most creative men in comics—the great Jack Kirby,” said Stan Lee, “whose magnificent artwork and wonderful story sense have rightly earned him the nickname ‘King Kirby.’ He had the ability to take any theme and make it look spectacular due to the power and the brilliance of his artwork. If ever a writer had the perfect collaborator, I was lucky to have had the brilliant and inimitable Jack Kirby."

Jack Kirby was the most important and influential artist in comic’s history. Besides Th…

My Back Pages 12/20/2015: Browsing the Archives

THE COLONIZED #1-4  (IDW Publishing, April -July 2013)  Written by Chris Ryall.  Art by Drew Moss  Colors by Jay Fotos.  Letters by Tom B. LongThis book features Zombies versus Aliens.  What more could you ask for?  There is actually a lot more, such as a small-town Montana collective community with the recent death of its’  leader igniting a power struggle.  A militant faction of the collective goes head to head with the environmentally minded group that wants to stay in power.  Can the son of the late leader carry on and pull this community back together?Things get complicated when an alien exploratory craft enters the Montana atmosphere and transports a human from ground level to their ship to make introductions.  The alien ship captain prepares his “take me to your leader” speech but gets a surprise.  It turns out that the ship hovered over a cemetery and tractor-beamed a buried corpse aboard the ship.  This activity causes the corpse to be revived as (you guessed it ) a flesh eat…

IDW announces Classic Star Wars in Artist's Edition

IDW to Collect Al Williamson’s 
Classic Star Wars in Artist’s Edition EDITOR’S NOTE: Coming on the heels of the just released STAR WARS:THE FORCE AWAKENS the timing for this couldn’t be better.  Details below.  From the official press release . . . . . . . .San Diego, CA (December 18, 2015) – The legendary late artist Al Williamson’s Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back stories are collected in the award-winning Artist’s Edition format this April. Included will be the complete adaptation, first published in issues #39 through #44 of the monthly Marvel Star Wars comic. In addition, pages from Star Wars #50, #98 and the Star Wars: Return of the Jedi mini series will also be presented. 

"Al loved drawing Star Wars,” said Williamson’s wife, Cori Williamson. “It’s a science fiction swashbuckler, the kind of story that really appealed to his sensibilities. As a lover and collector of classic comic-book and comic strip art, I think he would have been thrilled to see his work presented in thi…

Shadowman returns in new NINJAK story arc

EDITOR’S NOTE:  We have missed the presence of Shadowman from Valiant titles for several months.  Ninja #10 begins the four-part story of his return.  We’ve been waiting anxiously for this ever since it was announced.  The story pulls you in right away.  It also re-introduces Punk Mambo, another great Valiant character.  Here is a short preview to whet your appetite without giving away too much.

NINJAK #10  (Valiant Entertainment. December 9, 2015 release date) “Operation Deadside: Part 1”.  Matt Kindt, writer.  Doug Braithwaite, artist.  Brian Reber with Soto, color artists.  Taylor Esposito, letterer.  “The Lost Files: Legend of The Magpie”.  Matt Kindt, writer.  Juan Jose Ryp, artist.  Ulises Arreola, colorist.  Taylor Esposito, letterer.This time we’re going to talk about the art first.  Without detracting at all from the very engaging and well-paced story, the art in this issue is an absolute home run.  Give credit to writer Matt Kindt for imagining the nightmare world that Ninjak…

Christmas Cosplay Day at Local Comic Shop

Captain Blue Hen Comics in Newark, Delaware has been collecting canned food for their annual Holiday Food Drive to benefit the needy and homeless in the area.  To help bolster interest in the cause they held a special Christmas Cosplay Day at the Hen House today (Saturday, December 12).    We dropped by to make our donation and see who we could meet.  Unfortunately, our timing was off and we missed Batman, Captain America and Ms. Marvel.  But we had some fun meeting Deadpool and Harley Quinn who were full of Christmas cheers.Deadly but friendly - - - - Deadpool. Harley Quinn - - Don’t call her Miss Deadpool by mistake. That mallet hurts!Santa’s jovial helper  - -  who also resembles a Captain Blue Hen employee.

ROM THE SPACE KNIGHT returns after decades away

San Diego, CA (December 10, 2015) – Rom the Space Knight began life as one of the first LED-driven action figures in the late 1970s, then went on to much more acclaim as a comic book hero. Now, removed from comics for over three decades, the character is being given new life in Rom the Space Knight, an all-new comic book series from IDW Publishing.From the official IDW Press Release . . . . . . . 

Rom the Space Knight #0 will make its debut on the first Saturday in May as IDW’s “Gold” offering for Free Comic Book Day. The annual FCBD event sees thousands upon thousands of comics from all publishers given away for free at participating comic shops. The comic will be co-written by IDW Chief Creative Officer/Editor-in-Chief Chris Ryall and acclaimed comic-book/TV writer Christos Gage. Art on Rom #0 will be handled by David Messina, who will also be sharing artistic duties on the ongoing Rom series. The cover art for Rom #0 is by the Wild Blue Yonder team of Zach Howard and Nelson Daniel.


Politics and Horror mix in THE EIGHTH SEAL

THE EIGHTH SEAL #1 (IDW Publishing, December 2015) Written by James Tynion IV.  Penciled and Inked by Jeremy Rock.  Colored by Nolan Woodard.  Lettered by Troy Peteri.  We see his name coming up more these days. Comics writer James Tynion IV is not only prolific; he’s also very diverse.  Best known for his work on TALON for DC and THEWOODS, MEMETIC and COGNETIC for BOOM, he’s also co-writing BATMAN AND ROBINETERNAL with Scott Snyder and mixing genres with the just-released BATMAN/TEENAGEMUTANT NINJA TURTLES. Without benefit of any other information, learning that the title of Tynion’s newest offering is THE EIGHTH SEAL doesn’t indicate what it might be about. One look at the cover and you know automatically that this is a horror story.  Jeremy Rock’s cover illustration depicts body horror/transformation of the worst kind.    The story starts off like you would expect a psychological horror tale to begin, in the analyst’s professional office. Amelia Greene suffers from disturbing visio…

Pizza time for Batman in new and unusual crossover

BATMAN/TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES #1 of 6  (DC Comics & IDW Publishing; February 2016 cover date, released December 09, 2015)  Script: James Tynion IV  Art and Cover: Freddie E Williams II  Colors: Jeremy Colwell Letters: Tom Napolitano.  Variant Cover: Kevin Eastman with Tomi Varga.  Batman created by Bob Kane with Bill Finger.  Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles created by Kevin Eastman & Peter Laird.I first heard about this crossover during a panel at Baltimore Comic Con in September 2015.  At the time it seemed like a cool idea to have these characters meet, and the Comic Con crowd was certainly enthusiastic about it.  However, when the first issue became available for pre-order in October, I passed on the opportunity to get a copy.  Then, I was thinking that trying to blend these two very different characters and their worlds together would be a very daunting task and wouldn’t necessarily make for a good story.  Fun to see perhaps, but probably not a great read. A safer appro…

What's new tomorrow 12/09?: THE PRECINCT

THE PRECINCT #1  (Dynamite, December 09, 2015 release date)  Writer Frank J. Barberie.  Artist Crizam Christhian Zamora.  Colorist Dinei Ribeiro.  Letterer Troy Peteri.Yearning for a steampunk police procedural / mystery?  THE PRECINCT just might be what you are looking for.  The book looks stunning, with very imaginative artwork.  Big City is a steampunk metropolis, complete with blimps, elevated railroads and all sorts of machinery, all powered by steam.  The people dress in Victorian era garb and the locales also reflect that period of time.  Think Sherlock Holmes transplanted to Fritz Lang’s Metropolis.   Law and order is the responsibility of the local police force, commonly referred to as The Precinct.Veteran Officer Mortimer Hill is a hard-nosed, rough mannered cop with a mechanical arm.  He gets called into a murder investigation involving the Grand Master of the Alchemy Academy, a secretive commune blending religion and alchemy while denouncing a steam-powered machine based s…


EDITOR’S NOTES:  It’s good to see DC bringing back the Vertigo line of non-superhero titles in a variety of genres for mature readers.  We’d love to review them all but our BC Refugees Controller says the budget won’t take it.  (DC doesn’t acknowledge our presence; so we never get any review copies).  The plan was to see which titles were getting the most favorable word of month after a few issues and then wait for the eventual trade paperback edition.  But curiosity got the better of us; so we picked up this particular title.  Hope we made the right choice.  Review to follow . . . . .THE SHERIFF OF BABYLON #1  (DC/VERTIGO, February 2016) Eight issue mini-series. Tom King, writer.  Mitch Gerads, art and colors.  Nick Napolitano, letterer.  Created by King & Gerads.  Suggested for Mature Readers.
This new Vertigo title (released December 02, 2015) takes place in Iraq during February 2004, ten months after the fall of Baghdad, and focuses on the American occupy…


DOC SAVAGE: THE SPIDER’S WEB #1  (Dynamite Entertainment, December 2015)  Written by Chris Roberson.  Art buy Cezar Razek.  Colors by Dijo Lima.  Letters by Simon Bowland     He’s one of the enduring heroes who won’t go away, and we’re grateful for that!  He was created and introduced in the era before television when Americans looked to books, magazines and comics for their major entertainment fix.  Doc Savage, like his fellow 1930’s pulp magazine counterparts The Shadow, The Avenger and others, continues to find a new audience every decade or so. There continue to be hardcover and paperback reprints of those ten-cent novels, the occasional film treatment, and a score of comic book adaptations and original radio plays and novels based on Doc Savage.  The model for the original Man of Bronze was influenced by the keen mind and deductive ability of Sherlock Holmes, the strength of Hercules, the scientific brain of Einstein, Edison and others, and the adventurous nature of Marco Polo an…

What's new 12/02?: Seduction Of The Innocent

SEDUCTION OF THE INNOCENT #1  (Dynamite Entertainment, December 2015)  Writer:  Ande Parks.  Artist:  Esteve Polls.  Colors: Salvatore Aiala Studios.  Letters:  Simon Bowland.  Cover: Francesco Francavilla.The cover to SEDUCTION OF THE INNOCENT is an homage to those classic 1950’s EC comics that featured crime, suspense, war, horror, science fiction and fantasy.  The title is a sly reference to the 1954 nonfiction book by scaremonger Frederic Wertham which attempted to  “expose” the potential of comic books to corrupt young minds.  As a result of Congressional investigations prompted by the book, EC Comics discontinued their comics line and survived thanks to the popularity of a black and white magazine they published called MAD.  The hearings also resulted in the formation of the Comics Code Authority, a self-censorship group of comics publishers.     The cover of this new work recalls a different time and a different era for comic books.  For older readers, it will bring out feeling…

What's New on Wednesday 12/02?: JAMES BOND OO7

JAMES BOND 007 #2  (Dynamite Entertainment, December 2015)  “Vargr”  Warren Ellis, writer.  Jason Masters, artist.  Guy Majors, colors.  Simon Bowland, letters.  James Bond created by Ian Fleming.    With the Issue #1  introductions and formalities out of the way, Issue #2 of JAMES BOND 007 gets into the meat of the story and does so in standard Bond fashion with action upfront.   That’s the way we like our Bond and have come to anticipate it.      I shared my copy of Issue #1 with family members, who commented that there were lots of caption-less and dialogue-free panels.  “Too many pictures” was the comment.  “Not enough story. It reads too fast and doesn't deliver enough for the money.”  That is a valid opinion and one that may be shared by many readers.  Another opinion, and one that I share, is that this is the way we like our James Bond - - things happen fast and with lots of action.  What better way to illustrate action, especially violent fighting, than to let the art depi…

What's New 12/02?: X-O Manowar Commander Trill

X-O MANOWAR: COMMANDER TRILL #0  (Valiant Entertainment, December 2015)  “Destiny”  Writer: Robert Venditti.  Pencils: Francis Portela.  Inks:  Bit.  Colorist: Andrew Dalhouse.  Letterer:  Dave Sharpe.  Commander Trill created by Robert Venditti and Cary Nord    This is an important one-shot special issue that sheds some light on the background of a villainous character, one who’s been part of the X-O Manowar history since Issue #1 of the re-booted 2012 version of Aric of Dacia/X-O Manowar. As the X-O Manowar series prepares to head into a new story arc, it provides information that will help readers understand the motivations and values of one of the best new adversaries in the X-O legacy as detailed by gifted scripter Robert Venditti.     Early on in the series, Venditti introduced an alien race, six-eyed members of the Vine, and fleshed out the characters with insight into their history, politics, religion and value system.   As he so ably detailed, not every member of the race is …

ACTION LAB: Building on the first five years

EDITOR’S NOTE:  During the BALTIMORE COMIC-CON in late September, BC Refugee correspondents attended many panel presentations and gathered reams of information.  Unfortunately, production issues prevented us from presenting much of that here in a timely fashion.  However, we plan to sort through our data and post what is still relevant and worth sharing.  We have tagged ACTION LAB as a publisher to watch in 2016.  Since we have never posted any information about this company previously, we aim to make up for that here by sharing  the news from their panel at Baltimore Comic-Con on September 26, 2015 . . . . .According to the Saturday Programming notes in the official souvenir program book from Baltimore Comic Con: “ On the eve of their fifth anniversary, ACTION LAB shows no signs of stopping!”      In a lively and audience-interactive presentation, Action Lab Marketing Director Jamal Igle (Molly Danger) and writer Vito Delsante (Stray) revealed all the upcoming 2016 projects, includin…