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Best Comic Book Covers Ever (This Month) January 2015: Coipel, Rossmo, Cloonan, Harren & More

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A great comic book cover is an advertisement, a work of art, a statement, and an invitation. A great comic book cover is a glimpse of another world through a canvas no bigger than a window pane. In Best Comic Book Covers Ever (This Month), we look back over some of the most eye-catching, original and exceptional covers of the past month.

2015 got off to an impressive start with stunning compositions from Riley Rossmo, James Harren, and Ken Niimura; wonderful character portraits from Marko Djurdjevic, Becky Cloonan, and Kaare Andrews; amazing colors from Darwyn Cooke and Artyom Trakhanov; and a really fun He-Man piece from Stjepan Sejic.

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Image Releases First Pages From ‘Chronononauts’ By Sean Gordon Murphy & Mark Millar

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It's been a few months since we heard anything about Chrononauts, Image Comics' forthcoming time travel adventure series from Sean Gordon Murphy and Mark Millar. The pair gave an interview to Entertainment Weekly last November in which they described the series as a buddy time travel comedy, where mankind's exploration of time yields amusingly disastrous results. Since then both creators have had other work land on ComicsAlliance's Best Comics of 2014 -- the startlingly epic The Wake for Murphy, and the return-to-form Starlight for Millar -- so it's quite happily that we received these very appealing first glimpses at the pair's auspicious inaugural collaboration.

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Boom And Image Receive Two Nominations Each In 26th Annual GLAAD Media Awards

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GLAAD, the media monitoring group for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender representation, has announced the nominees for its annual Media Awards celebrating positive LGBT representation in mainstream media, including the five comic book series that it believes provided outstanding examples of fair, inclusive, original and impactful LGBT characters in 2014.

This year's awards include first-time nominations for two publishers, Image Comics and Boom Studios. DC Comics is conspicuously absent this year, despite being nominated at least once every year seemingly for as long as GLAAD has recognized comics. Archie Comics is also absent for the first time since the debut of Kevin Keller in 2010.

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Descender: The First Pages From Jeff Lemire & Dustin Nguyen’s Lonely New Space Opera

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The Image Comics slate for 2015 is something of an embarrassment of riches, with new work coming from some of the most exciting creators in North American comics, including those who've been building their fan bases with acclaimed work at Marvel and DC Comics for several years.

Among those who'll be creating original work for the first time in a long time is Dustin Nguyen, who's been one of DC's most reliably great artists of the decade. Known for his fantastic chibi book Li'l Gotham, beautiful backups in Superman Unchained and all sorts of striking work in the Batman line, Nguyen's inkwash and watercolor technique has sort of typecast him as a go-to cute and/or gothic artist. But those who've followed his career closely know that Nguyen is passionate about science fiction. He's worked on DC's Justice League Beyond and his own Wildstorm creation Manifest Eternity, but what's likely to be the cartoonist's biggest impact in the genre he loves so much is Descender, his new Image monthly with Jeff Lemire.

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Image Comics Launches Direct Mail Subscription Service, Image Direct

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Image Comics hopes to bring new life to a familiar comics business model with Image Direct, a just-launched direct mail subscription service that offers customers in the continental United States discounts of up to 35% on Image titles shipped direct to their door. Customers can currently buy twelve-issue subscriptions on 42 different ongoing titles, including Saga, The Walking Dead, Savage Dragon, Wytches, and Invincible.

According to the FAQ on the new Image Direct site, customers subscribing to two or more titles receive a 10% discount on cover price; four or more gets you a 20% discount. Customers must subscribe to all the titles offered to qualify for the largest 35% discount. The price of an individual 12-issue subscription ranges from $35.88 to $47.88. Subscribing to all of the books costs $1,117.99 after discount.

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Morrison & Burnham’s ‘Nameless’ #1 Comes With Variant Covers By Names Like Tony Moore, Nathan Fox And Jonathan Hickman

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If you've been wanting to read a comic that emphasizes a "long-withheld sneering contempt for our miserable species, with its self-serving, sentimental, suicidal self-delusions and its greedy, willful ignorance," then folks, I have got some good news for you. We are only a few short weeks away from the release of Nameless, the new six-issue Image Comics series from Grant Morrison, Chris Burnham and Nathan Fairbairn, described by Morrison as a straight-up horror comic about the worst that humanity has to offer.

To celebrate that fact -- uh, the release, I mean, not the thing about greedy ignorance and suicidal self-delusions -- Burnham revealed three variant covers for the first issue today, featuring the art of Tony Moore, Nathan Fox, and Jonathan Hickman. A fourth variant has also been commissioned, but they're keeping that secret for now.

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Best Cosplay Ever (This Week): Two-Face, Lupin, The Rocketeer, Luke Cage & Iron Fist And More

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Although cosplay has been present for decades within the comics, anime, and sci-fi/fantasy fandoms, social media has played an integral role in the thriving communities of costuming that exist, such as Cosplay.com and the Superhero Costuming Forum. Over the years, the cosplay community has evolved into a creative outlet for many fans to establish and showcase some impressive feats of homemade disguise, craftsmanship, and sartorial superheroics at conventions. In honor of the caped crusaders of the convention scene, ComicsAlliance has created Best Cosplay Ever (This Week), an ongoing collection of some of the most impeccable, creative, and clever costumes that we’ve discovered and assembled into a super-showcase of pure fan-devoted talent.

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Southern Cross: Get Excited For The Sci-Fi Horror Book By Becky Cloonan And Andy Belanger

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For the past few days the comics internet has been abuzz with the news out of the 2015 Image Expo, but there's something that was announced at last year's that I'm every bit as excited for as the new batch: Southern Cross, the new sci-fi horror comic from writer-artist Becky Cloonan, artist Andy Belanger, and colorist Shari Chankhamma.

Originally announced at Image Expo 2014, Southern Cross is set for release in March, and to get people excited, Cloonan and Belanger have been posting designs from the series on a Tumblr dedicated to the comic -- and clearly, it's working, largely because they are awesome.

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Diamond’s 2014 Sales Report Begs The Question; What The Heck Is Eaglemoss Publications?

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The Wall Street Journal published Diamond Comic Distributors' list of the top-selling comics publishers for 2014 Friday morning, and for the most part, it's all the usual suspects. Marvel was No. 1 with more than a third of the market share, in both dollars and units. DC was reasonably close behind. Image, IDW, Dark Horse, Dynamite and Boom Studios took the next spots.

Then comes number eight. Eaglemoss Publications. Wait. What? Who?

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Exclusive: Image Announces ‘Kaptara’, From Chip Zdarsky & Kagan McLeod: ‘Gay Saga’ In A Weird Cosmic Toybox [Interview]

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Sex Criminals co-creator Chip Zdarsky and Infinite Kung Fu author Kagan McLeod plan to take readers to colorful, strange, and rather gay new worlds with their new Image ongoing title Kaptara this April. Announced by Zdarsky himself and Image publisher Eric Stephenson at the one-day Image Expo in San Francisco on Thursday, the book sees a waylaid earthman sent on an odyssey through peculiar worlds inspired by the action figures of the 1980s, on a mission to save his home planet.

The two Toronto-based writer-artists have known each other for years, and as they told ComicsAlliance, the roots of this collaboration go back to the studio they once shared. Kaptara is written by Zdarsky and illustrated in full color by McLeod, an acclaimed magazine illustrator making his return to comics. The story offers echoes of Flash Gordon and John Carter, and of Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples' Saga, only... gayer. More gay. ComicsAlliance met with the team to find out just how gay, and to get the ball rolling on Motivational Orb mania.

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