Archie Comics has officially jumped the Sharknado.
In an move that is absolutely not an April Fools' joke, because that was more than two weeks ago, Archie will be teaming up with the filmmakers behind the intentionally cheesy Sharknado movie series for a 48-page one shot titled Archie vs. Sharknado. The issue, co-written by Archie stalwart Dan Parent and Sharknado trilogy director Anthony C. Ferrante, and featuring art by Parent and Rich Koslowski, will come out July 22, the same day Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! premieres on SyFy.
Aside from their first initial, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Archie Andrews have never had all that much in common. That changed this week, when Dark Horse Comics released Archie Vs. Predator, and the alien big game hunter that menaced a dirty, sweaty, well-muscled cast lead by Schwarzenneger in the 1987 film Predator set his sites on Archie, Betty, Veronica, Jughead and their quite killable gang.
In film, Predators have been mostly content to hunt humans, and aliens from the Aliens franchise, across a series of five films — Predator, Predator 2, AVP: Alien Vs. Predator, Alien Vs. Predator: Requiem and Predators — but in comics, they've pursued and usually failed to obtain some pretty exotic skulls.
The days of Sonic the Hedgehog being confined to his own, Sega-centric universe are long over --- he's met Mega Man in comics and done Olympic events with Mario in games --- but the speedy blue guy has quite possibly never been to a world as expansive as the one he's going to experience in August's Sonic the Hedgehog #275 from Archie.
Not only is Mega Man involved in part eleven of the huge "Worlds Unite" event, but lots of other Capcom and Sega worlds will be part of the story, too. Street Fighter, Billy Hatcher, NiGHTS into Dreams and Monster Hunter are among the other franchises in the mix. Check out our exclusive reveal of covers by artists Patrick "Spaz" Spaziante, Edwin Haung, Lamar Wells, Tracy Yardley, and Rafa Knight!
The adventure series Rat Queens from Kurtis J. Wiebe and Roc Upchurch took home the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Comic Book at a ceremony in Los Angeles on Saturday. The medieval fantasy series centers on a diverse cast of female adventurers, including lesbian halfling thief Betty.
This year's other nominees were Hawkeye, by Matt Fraction, David Aja, Annie Wu, and Matt Hollingsworth; Lumberjanes, by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, and Brooke Allen; Memetic, by James Tynion IV and Eryk Donovan; and Saga, by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples.
Those of you who haven't been obsessively keeping track of which Archie Comics are available to buy at 3:00 AM might not be aware of this, but the publisher has been putting out pretty inexpensive digital collections for a while now that are all built around a certain theme. There's a bunch of them up, including one that features my beloved Elevenaire, but this week, they're topping them all with Archie & Friends: Wrestle Maniacs.
That's right, brother: A bunch of Archie comics about the King of Sports, professional wrestling. And, I suppose, that greco-roman stuff that they do in high schools and the Olympics, which, let's face it, is obviously the inferior version due to a lack of zombies, dragons, and steel chairs used as weapons.
Before Archie Comics announced their intentions to relaunch a handful of their old superhero properties in a new line called "Dark Circle" — but not too long before — Dean Haspiel, Mark Waid and company revived one of those characters in their five-part Fox miniseries that ran from 2013-2014. An all-around excellent series from one of the most reliable writers in the field and an amazing artist who just doesn't get enough opportunities to prove how good he is at drawing superheroes, that first Fox series proved that Archie superhero comics could be just as good — or even far better — than many of those produced by the genre's two leading publishers.
There's every reason to believe that the overall quality of The Fox, and its rather warm reception by readers and critics, had more than a little to do with the creation of Dark Circle. For further, more concrete proof, look no further than the fact that a new Haspiel and Waid ongoing Fox series is part of the new line.
Q: Can you help an Archie skeptic understand why it's so great? - @SuperSentaiBros
A: Man, I hope so. After all, until a few years ago, Archie was arguably the most overlooked publisher in comics just by sheer volume of what they were putting out, at least among die-hard superhero fans. And to be honest, they had a good reason for it --- in a lot of ways, those comics had gotten stale, and they were in dire need of exactly the kind of shot in the arm that they got from the big name projects that have made them so engaging today.
The thing is, at least in my case, it wasn't when Archie suddenly got weird that made me such a big fan. It was when I realized that they'd been weird all along.
As you may have heard, Archie is relaunching their flagship title in July, bringing an end to what has been the longest continuously published American comic that has never been rebooted, after 666 issues. In addition to a new direction from Mark Waid and Fiona Staples, the relaunch is getting a whole slew of variant covers focusing on the revamped design for everyone's favorite two-timing redheaded high schooler, from artists like J. Scott Campbell, Dean Haspiel, and more.
Now we've got seven of those variant covers to reveal, bringing the total number of Archie #1 variants to approximately one hundred million (and all of them awesome). Check them out below, from Tania Del Rio, Genevieve F.T., legendary Superman and Shazam artist Jerry Ordway, and more!
Even though it was announced months ago, I'm still having a hard time believing that we live in a magical world where Alex de Campi and Fernando Ruiz's Archie Vs Predator is a real thing that is happening. Even in a time when the company's most critically successful book is a moody supernatural horror story where the entire cast is about two seconds away from being murdered by zombies, Archie Vs Predator still seems like a beautiful, beautiful dream.
That's why, in order to confirm that this is in fact happening, I spoke to Ruiz about what it's like to send the Predator to Riverdale, and how it compares to drawing Betty riding a dragon.
If you've been following Archie's adventure comics, then you might remember that a good chunk of 2013 was taken up with "Worlds Collide," a massive crossover between Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man. If you missed it, then trust me, it was a pretty big deal - so big, in fact, that it seems like Archie, Sonic and Capcom have decided to follow it up with an even bigger crossover: "Worlds Unite," a full-on mashup of Sega and Capcom characters, set to launch in May, finally bring us one step closer to my dream of Jughead showing up in a Street Fighter game.
What? We're actually getting Archie vs. Predator, do you really think that couldn't happen?
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