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I Want To Make This A Performance: Grant Morrison Discusses His Plans For ‘Heavy Metal’ [Interview]

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When it was announced last month that Heavy Metal magazine had signed Grant Morrison to serve as their new editor-in-chief, it seemed to be the exact real-world approximation of that comic cliche: a team-up that nobody anticipated, but that makes perfect sense when considered from the right angle.

Heavy Metal is a title that, in its '70s/'80s heyday, redefined the limits of comic book form and content, much as Morrison has eschewed conventional stylistic and genre constraints throughout his career. Today, the magazine's name is shorthand for a specific style of exploitative genre fiction --- usually involving some combination of sci-fi, sword & sorcery, swearing, and sex --- but owners Jeff Krelitz and David Boxenbaum have been vocal about their hopes to expand the Heavy Metal brand and reignite the revolutionary spirit that it originally embodied.

ComicsAlliance sat down with Morrison at this summer's San Diego Comic-Con to talk about his personal history with Heavy Metal, ask some questions about his plans, and get a glimpse into the approach he's bringing to his new role at the magazine.

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Building A Rock ‘N Roll Fantasy: Paul Cornell and Tony Parker Talk ‘This Damned Band’ [Interview]

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Earlier this month, Dark Horse released the first issue of This Damned Band, a new series from writer Paul Cornell and artist Tony Parker that tells the story of the seminal early '70s band Motherfather --- a group that attempts to enjoy the trappings of rock stardom, but at the same time become mixed up in forces far beyond their control.

In advance of issue #2 hitting stands next week, ComicsAlliance had the opportunity to sit down with Cornell and Parker to talk about the series.

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Pretend They’re People: The Fifty-Year-Old Answer to Marvel’s Diversity Problem

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It remains a bleak time for the female comic audience, and for other minority audiences. The recent debacle with Hercules is merely the latest of Marvel’s many ghastly faux pas; for every two steps forward, it seems to take two steps back: it publishes more female titles only to end the majority of them with Secret Wars, and it tantalizes us with Hercules only to promote the status quo inside of continuity.

It is easy to lose faith in the publisher’s ability to reform from within, but Marvel has had the key to equal, positive representation for over fifty years now.

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The Evolution of the Joker: Best Joker Stories by Decade

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Many of comics’ most popular characters have been around for decades, and in the case of the big names from the publisher now known as DC Comics, some have been around for a sizable chunk of a century. As these characters passed through the different historical eras known in comics as the Golden Age (the late 1930s through the early 1950s), the Silver Age (the mid 1950s through the late 1960s), the Bronze Age (the early 1970s through the mid 1980s) and on into modern times, they have experienced considerable changes in tone and portrayal that reflect the zeitgeist of the time.

With this feature we’ll help you navigate the very best stories of DC Comics’ most significant characters decade by decade. This week, we’re taking a look at the best Joker comics.

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Comics as History: Discussing Joel Christian Gill’s ‘Strange Fruit’

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Strange Fruit: Uncelebrated Narratives from Black History by Joel Christian Gill is a narrative history for young readers. The book was released in May of 2014 to some acclaim, but didn’t quite break through to a wider audience. Mark Waid and JG Jones' controversial recent Boom project of the same name has made Gill'’s excellent book a topic of conversation again. J.A. Micheline and Megan Purdy dig deep into Gill's exploration of some of the forgotten faces in black history.

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What Other Conventions Can Learn from London’s Nine Worlds GeekFest (And What Nine Worlds Can Still Do Better)

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Nine Worlds Geekfest is a London convention that is --- and let’s just get this out of the way now --- unconventional. The event was born out of a Kickstarter in 2013 which sought to put on a “weekend-long, multi-genre convention” with a note that they are “founded on the radical belief that geekdom should not be restricted by class, age, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, disability, or the ability to cite Wookieepedia in arguments.” This is the kind of lip service you see at most conventions, despite actual attendants finding the truth to be slightly different.

But Nine Worlds puts its money where its mouth is.

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The Force Awakens in Marvel’s Remastered ‘Empire Strikes Back’ Hardcover [Review]

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There has been an awakening. Have you felt it? Across toy and bookstore shelves, Disney is gearing up for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Marvel's doing their part to make sure there's a good amount of Star Wars comics in preparation for the blockbuster. Part of their initiative involves the release of "remastered" hardcover versions of Marvel's original comics adaptations with updated coloring by SotoColor.

The first volume, an updating of the 1977 Roy Thomas/Howard Chaykin adaptation of A New Hope, came out in April, and this week sees the debut of the adaptation of 1980's The Empire Strikes Back, written by Archie Goodwin and penciled by Al Williamson and Carlos Garzón.

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Everything That Was Cut From ‘Fantastic Four’ Before Its Release (That We Know About)

Fantastic Four movie review
20th Century Fox

The fact that Fantastic Four had a disastrous shoot followed by laborious reshoots may be the worst kept Hollywood secret of all time. Even if director Josh Trank hadn’t publicly displayed his dissatisfaction with the finished movie, just about anyone who sat through this mess could tell something was wrong just from the finished product. They’d know if from the inconsistent pacing, the main characters who contribute nothing to the movie, and a climax that feels like it was cobbled together by a completely different creative team. Hell, they’d know it from Kate Mara’s terrible reshoot wig, which sticks out like, well, a bad wig.

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Filed Under: , Category: Longform, Marvel, Movies

Review: ‘Fantastic Four’ Is a Complete Bore

Fantastic Four movie review
20th Century Fox

Here’s the thing about this Fantastic Four movie: it was supposed to be horrible. This movie has been riding an almost unprecedented level of bad buzz since earlier this year. Strangely, it seems to have started over literally nothing. Fans were upset they hadn’t seen anything official from the movie and began to suspect it stunk. Then, depending on who you talk to, the director was fired, the actors were upset and the script was a mess. But, the days of speculation are over and none of that bad buzz matters any more; there’s an actual film that can be judged on its own merits. Sadly, Fantastic Four, on its own merits, is still horrible.

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The Evolution of Luthor: Best Lex Luthor Stories by Decade

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Many of comics’ most popular heroes have been around for decades, and in the case of the big names from the publisher now known as DC Comics, some have been around for a sizable chunk of a century. As these characters passed through the different historical eras known in comics as the Golden Age (the late 1930s through the early 1950s), the Silver Age (the mid 1950s through the late 1960s), the Bronze Age (the early 1970s through the mid 1980s) and on into modern times, they have experienced considerable changes in tone and portrayal that reflect the zeitgeist of the time.

With this feature we’ll help you navigate the very best stories of DC Comics’ most beloved characters decade by decade. This week, we’re taking a look at the best Lex Luthor comics.

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