Ray Fawkes is back, bringing his staple watercolour art to the first issue of The Underwinter. The majority of the book is rendered in a particular style, but Fawkes changes his approach fairly dramatically for a single sequence near the end of the book. It's a similar technique to a few different things I've talked about in this column on other occasions, but there's a very interesting element to it that makes this particular example a little different, and worth further exploration.
The weekend is here! Take a look back at what’s happened in the past seven days. New comics, new stories, new podcasts, new art being made — it’s all part of the ComicsAlliance Weekender!
Ramona Fradon is one of the greatest comic book artists of DC's Silver Age, and indeed one of the most important comics artists of all time. She was a woman working in a male-dominated industry back in what we 21st Century folks like to call the Mad Men era. As such, she hasn't always gotten the same respect as her male peers, but her work nevertheless helped built what we now think of as the language of superhero comics.
Felix Comic Art is launching an online sale featuring original pieces by artists including Paul Pope, Cliff Chiang, Bryan Lee O'Malley, Skottie Young, Ramon Villalobos, and more, with 100% of the proceeds going to benefit the American Civil Liberties Union.
I'm a firm believer that comics aren't a medium that favor page after page of dialogue, so you need interesting ways to present that information. This month's Kill or be Killed, by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Elizabeth Breitweiser, presents a perfect example.
Thanks to the Netflix television show, Iron Fist is a character that's on a lot of people's minds, but not quite for the reasons Marvel may want. The casting of Finn Jones is regarded by many as an ill-conceived choice that adheres too closely to the comics and leans on tropes of the white savior.
Inspired by Kris Anka's 2015 redesign of the character as an Asian-American hero, some of comics' best artists have offered their own interpretations of this more badass, more culturally relevant, and --- let's be honest --- more downright sexy Danny Rand.
One of the most interesting developments in Power Rangers has come in the pages of Boom's Mighty Morphin Power Rangers comic, in which Billy and Zack have journeyed to a nightmare dystopia where Tommy never overcame his evil origins, and conquered the world as Emperor Drakkon. He's not keeping the power to himself, though --- he's given the Rangers' power to a team of elite (and evil) warriors, designed by Jamal Campbell in collaboration with Saban Brands. They are... the Power Ranger Sentries.
Horror is a notoriously difficult genre to pull off in comics. The reader controls the pace, so scares and surprises don't work the same way they do in other media, and once you've seen enough of them, shocking twist endings can feel routine. Every now and then, though, there's a creator who has the ability to pull it off, crafting unforgettable visuals and a moody setting that feels oppressive, unknown and terrifying, and Bernie Wrightson, born this day in 1948, is unquestionably one of the masters.
Over the course of a career that began in 1968, Wrightson has crafted stories full of twisted figures and haunting apparitions, and he's never stopped experimenting with how he can do it better.
There's a really famous set of panels that Wally Wood curated over the years, traditionally referred to as "Wally Wood's 22 Panels That Always Work!!". It's a set of panels that will always work when, as an artist, you're stuck in a situation of characters speaking to each other page after page. sometimes it's necessary for the story, so these 22 panels are ways to visually change up your visuals through the pages.
In Sons of Anarchy: Redwood Original #8, by Ollie Masters, Eoin Marron, Adam Metcalfe and Ed Dukeshire, there are a few pages that really highlight how Marron has a clear grasp of those panels.
Some monsters are surprisingly small, no bigger than a person or smaller still. They intimidate psychologically or with supernatural powers, not with size and strength. But then there are monsters that are big. Giant monsters are easy to understand. They are to humans what we are to ants, and we all know all too well how many ants we've stepped on.
With Monsters Unleashed going on at Marvel, and Kong: Skull Island currently in theaters, this feels like a great time to pay tribute to the various giant beasts and kaiju that have graced the covers of comic books for about as long as comics have existed.