The big headline on Publishers Weekly’s site when it published the results of its comics retailer survey last month blared that comics sales were down during the early months of 2014, though retailers seem relatively optimistic about it.
What comes after is a sometimes difficult-to-parse snapshot of the world of comics as it looks now. It’s not necessarily a bleak picture, but it’s very clearly one that portrays an industry may not be able to sustain itself as it is now. Change is occurring, and here are some key items from the report that show how, and what might be changing.
When Boom! filled us in that Adventure Time head writer Kent Osborne would be teaming with Regular Show: Skips artist Mad Rupert for a new series in July that'd include the show's recently-introduced Root Beer Guy, I was intrigued. When the title of the book was revealed to be Adventure Time: Banana Guard Academy, I was ecstatic. I finally had a reason to make someone answer a question relating to the Police Academy franchise! Fortunately for ComicsAlliance, Kent is a very good sport. Read on to learn about how Kent crossed over from the world of AT animation into comics, who some of his favorite creators are, and how Tony Hawk fits into it all.
Thursday's links await, after the jump.
If our weekly Ask Chris column isn't enough of definitive comic book (and pro wrestling) opinions for you, good news: ComicsAlliance is proud to present Here's The Thing, a series of videos where you can join our own extremely opinionated senior writer, Chris Sims, as he sits in his living room under a framed portrait of Destro, drinking a cup of coffee and sharing his opinion on comic books.
This week, Chris takes a viewer question from someone curious about Cadmus Institute, a fixture of the DC universe created by the legendary Jack Kirby that has its roots in the Golden Age and continues to operate in the background of comics all the way to the 21st Century.
Courtesy of Marvel, ComicsAlliance brings you an advance look at new periodical comic books, collected editions and graphic novels going on sale in June 2014 (and in some cases beyond) from the publisher’s mainline Marvel Universe titles, Ultimate Comics, the mature readers MAX imprint and the creator-owned label Icon. All of the following books can be purchased at finer comic book shops, where you can also pre-order your selections to ensure you’ll get a copy before they sell out.
The good news is that Beware The Batman Is Returning to television on May 10. The bad news is that Beware the Batman is returning to television... at 3:00 a.m.
As confirmed by Cartoon Network, the remaining episodes of Batman's ill-fated CG animated series will be slid into the Toonami lineup that airs after the late-night Adult Swim block, starting the show over with the first episode on May 10, and getting to the last half of the first (and I'm going to go ahead and assume only) season starting July 27.
In a Wednesday blog post, Waid unveiled what he's calling "Thrillbent 3.0," which adds another layer of content that Waid is calling a sort of "Hulu Plus of comics." Fans can pay a $3.99 monthly fee -- about as much as the cover price for most Marvel single issues -- to access a collection of titles including a revived version of Waid, Barry Kitson and Chris Sotomayor's Gorilla Comics/DC series Empire. There's also a free new app available for iOS that gives fans mobile access to the material.
Diamond Select Toys and Art Asylum had a LOT of characters to choose from when putting together their X-Men: Days of Future Past Minimates line, but it seems the toymakers were able to narrow down their wave to just eight Merry Mutants from two time periods. Due out this summer are two packs pairing Future Professor X with Past Magneto, Future Magneto with Past Mystique, Future Wolverine with Future Storm, and Past Logan with Past Charles Xavier.
It was pretty much a foregone conclusion that I was going to love Cosmic Scoundrels. The very idea of it, two bros cruising through space on a starship called the S.S. Fistpuncher, hijacking precious cargo from malevolent aliens and just generally pissing everyone off, is right up my alley from the start. I've been a sucker for outer space buddy comedies for as long as I've been reading, so I'm already on board before I even hit page one.
But then, if you tell me that it's written by Matt Chapman, one of the creators of Homestar Runner and the actual voice of Strong Bad, and drawn by Andy Suriano, an animator who worked on Samurai Jack and the new Mickey Mouse shorts? There's just no getting around it: I was going to love this comic from the moment it was made. And fortunately, it really is that good.
Statue collectors and Justice League Dark fans have a lot to look forward to judging from DC Collectibles' July solicitation information. A number of new statues from the "Icons," "Cover Girls," "Patina" and other lines are due out this September and October, along with New 52 action figures of Constantine and Zatanna. Those seeking something a little softer than metal, resin and plastic will also finally be able to get their hands on the DC Nation Deadman and Crow plush two-pack, which was initially slated for an earlier release but was pushed closer to Halloween.
Scroll on down for a look at all of DCC's July 2014 solicitation info.