March: Book One was easily one of the best graphic novels of 2013. Not only did it begin a story of immense historical consequence-- the mid-20th Century fight for civil rights in the American South-- it also told that story from a strong, personal perspective. That perspective came from U.S. Rep. John Lewis of Georgia, who serves as the reader's guide through some very weighty material.
Now, the pressure's on. Lewis, his co-writer Andrew Aydin, and artist Nate Powell are getting set to release March: Book Two in early 2015, and their challenge is to follow up a lauded text -- one that's been used in a good many classrooms since publication -- with a second chapter that gets more violent and shows just how difficult the struggle for civil rights really was.
ComicsAlliance chatted with Powell and Aydin for a few moments at Comic-Con International in San Diego to talk about that challenge, the difficulties of depicting such intense violence, and creating what's being regarded as an official historical text.
Since it first hit the stands in 2004, I've gone through three or four copies of Street Angel. It's on my short-list of favorite comics -- one of those books I've lent and given away over and over, gambling that I could find another copy, a process that's taken longer and longer as it fell further and further out of print.
Luckily for me -- and the whole new generation of readers who didn't catch it the first time around -- Street Angel is back, in a hella sweet hardcover edition from AdHouse Books (who hooked me up with a review copy, which I will do my best to hang on to for at least a few months this time around).
In the overwhelmingly male comic book industry, it has been a challenge for some editors and readers to see the ever growing number of talented women currently trying to make a name for themselves. With that in mind, ComicsAlliance offers Hire This Woman, a recurring feature designed for comics readers as well as editors and other professionals, where we shine the spotlight on a female comics pro on the ascendance. Some of these women will be at the very beginning of their careers, while others will be more experienced but not yet “household names.”
Painter Nen has primarily worked on things like trading cards, gaming art, and character designs, but is currently working on her own fully painted graphic novel, Iscariot. Nen is also a graduate of Savannah's College of Art and Design with a degree in Sequential Art.
Lucy Knisley is a long-time favorite of ours here at ComicsAlliance – she's produced an astoundingly diverse body of work that includes travelogue comics, pop-culture commentaries, NSFW sex-positive prints, Harry Potter fan art, Adventure Time stories, and is probably best-known for Relish, her acclaimed "cooking memoir" graphic novel from First Second books.
Last month, First Second announced her next original graphic novel, an autobiographical wedding planning story entitled Something New. While at San Diego Comic-Con last month, we got the chance to sit down with Kinsley and talk about her artistic inspirations, her thoughts on attending the convention, and her recent and upcoming works.
Despite all the big publishing news to come out around or during last month's San Diego Comic-Con, the new comic book that remains most anticipated by many superhero fans -- and by others who don't yet know they're waiting for it -- is Batgirl. Perhaps the one DC or Marvel comic that really does deserve a new #1 issue, Batgirl's youthful and stylish revamp at the hands of Cameron Stewart, Babs Tarr and Brenden Fletcher was met with massive electronic response when it was announced just ahead of the San Diego show, generating all but countless pieces of fan-art as well as some criticism from current readers for seemingly abandoning the darker aesthetic values of the three-year-old New 52 title.
There's a lot to unpack about the new Batgirl and we only had a few minutes with her new creative team in which to do it at SDCC. Read on for remarks by series co-writer and layout artist Cameron Stewart, co-writer Brenden Fletcher, and finishing artist (and, perhaps, spiritual guide) Babs Tarr.
The last year of Cartoon Network's Regular Show has brought some pretty huge changes to the lives of everyone's favorite park groundskeepers who just happen to be a raccoon and a bluejay. The departure of Margaret and the reintroduction of CJ, the secret origin of Skips and the introduction of Thomas the Intern have all shaken up life around the park, and it doesn't seem like it's going to stop any time soon.
To find out more, I went to San Diego Comic-Con and spoke to J.G. Quintel (show creator and the voice of Mordecai), Sean Szeles (writer and director), Matt Price (writer), Bill Salyers (Rigby), Minty Lewis (storyboard artist and the voice of Eileen) and Roger Craig Smith (Thomas) at Comic-Con International. Find out more about Eileen's rise to prominence, hear hints about Thomas's upcoming role in the spotlight, and witness J.G. Quintel's reaction when I tell him how upset my 63 year-old mother was when Skips' girlfriend died in that flashback. Seriously.
DC Comics' upcoming Gotham Academy by Becky Cloonan, Brenden Fletcher and Karl Kerschl is one of those ideas that's so good that it's amazing that it took a full 75 years of Batman comics for it to actually happen. Set in a prestigious private school in the middle of Batman's hometown, Gotham Academy will debut this October following the adventures of two young students at a private school in a city known mostly for its truly staggering population of supervillains.
One assumes that hijinks will ensue, but to find out more, ComicsAlliance's Juliet Kahn spoke to Cloonan, Fletcher and Batman group editor Mark Doyle at San Diego Comic-Con.
Canada offers an impressive range of comics talents, but its comic industry has usually been overshadowed by the buying power of the U.S. market -- but for one brief period in modern history. During the Second World War Canada restricted the import of non-essential items -- and that included comic books. For much of the 1940s, Canadians could only read Canadian comics. The era has become known as the Canadian Golden Age.
Hope Nicholson was a researcher on a documentary about the characters created during this era, Lost Heroes. Fascinated by the subject, Nicholson and her partner Rachel Richey launched a project to restore and republish the stories of one of the first comic superheroines, Adrian Dingle's Nelvana of the Northern Lights. With that book now in print, Nicholson has launched a Kickstarter to revive another lost Canadian hero; the square-jawed action man Brok Windsor.
Faith Erin Hicks is one of North American comics' most versatile talents, a writer/artist who's gained critical acclaim and commercial success, and raised her profile with each successive project she's released over her 15+ year career.
This year's San Diego Comic-Con was particularly eventful for Hicks, as she announced her new graphic novel series from First Second books and won an Eisner Award for Dark Horse's collection of her The Adventures Of Superhero Girl webcomic. We caught up with her in San Diego the morning after the Eisner awards to talk about current projects.
Next month, DC Comics will launch Sensation Comics, a digital-first anthology series featuring new Wonder Woman stories from a wide variety of creators and styles. This approach follows in the footsteps of the acclaimed Adventures Of Superman series, and is similarly structured – a new 10-page digital chapter will be released each week, and the stories will then be collected in a monthly print edition, with paperbacks presumably to follow.
During last weekend's San Diego Comic-Con, we got the chance to hang out at the DC booth and have a quick round-table conversation with legendary Love & Rockets cartoonist Gilbert Hernandez, Smallville illustrator Cat Staggs, and Vampire Diaries writer Sean E. Williams, and ask about what they have planned for their installments of the new Wonder Woman book.
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