Among a certain group of comics fans -- namely, comedians -- Bob Fingerman is a name that is revered.
Over the quarter-century or so that he has been working in comics, Fingerman has dipped his toe into a lot of different pools, from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comics all the way to Eros' porn comix, but his autobiographical comic Minimum Wage will probably be what he's remembered for through the ages. Over the past few years, Image Comics has given readers ample opportunity to catch up with Minimum Wage, and in October they'll have a chance to read the first six issues of the new iteration of the series in a brand new trade paperback.
As much as the kids who grew up with Harry Potter may want to become real wizards, there's really not much it'll ever happen. But a new work for middle schoolers focuses on a secret school that teaches some real-world skills (or maybe a slightly amplified version). The new graphic novel Secret Coders, by Gene Luen Yang (The Shadow Hero) and Mike Holmes (Bravest Warriors), makes computer programming an adventure.
“There’s something magic about coding, especially old-school coding,” Yang told Wired. “When you type these words into this machine, something kind of magic, something kind of crazy happens.”
Though hugely influential on characters including Vampirella, Jean-Claude Forest's Barbarella graphic novels haven't really made a huge dent in American comics culture. Many fans are likely familiar with the 1968 movie starring Jane Fonda, but Forest's French comics haven't been printed in English since appearing in Heavy Metal back in 1978.
That's about to change thanks to Humanoids Publishing and writer Kelly Sue DeConnick. A new translation of Forest's Barbarella, scripted by DeConnick, is set for release September 24, with the first-ever English reprint of the second book, The Wrath of the Minute-Eater, coming in January.
This week, Marvel Comics announced that it's planning to publish a new printing of the Howard the Duck Omnibus in October, collecting the character's first appearance, all 33 issues of the original Howard the Duck series, and several other appearances in Marvel Team-Up, Marvel Treasury Edition, and Man-Thing.
It's the first time the omnibus has seen print since 2008, and it's a great resource for anyone looking to familiarize themselves with Howard -- a great, satirical character often held in low regard because of the 1986 movie. It's also an opportunity to get to know the work of Steve Gerber, the writer who co-created the character with artist Val Mayerik. Gerber died in February 2008, six months before the original release of the omnibus, and did not hold very positive feelings towards Marvel for decades after his Howard the Duck comics were first published.
Writer Scott Snyder and artist Jock collaborated on what will likely go down as the best Dick-Grayson-as-Batman story, 'The Black Mirror,' so it just makes sense for them to work together again.
Their new series, Wytches, isn't quite what you might expect. It's a horror story -- about witches, if you haven't guessed -- though Jock is often thought of as an artist who specializes in action. And it's published by Image Comics, despite Snyder seeming firmly entrenched at DC for the past several years (though his series Severed was also at Image).
Never let it be said that Valiant Comics doesn't try new things with its characters.
The publisher's latest experiment is something you don't see a lot of in comics any more: An "entirely self-contained" prestige-format miniseries titled The Valiant. It's certainly a project loaded with talent. It's co-written by Matt Kindt (Mind MGMT) and Jeff Lemire (Sweet Tooth), and features art by Paolo Rivera (Daredevil).
Next month, Otto Octavius will once again don the red-and-black tights and highly reflective lenses of his Spider-Man costume in Superior Spider-Man #32 by Dan Slott, Christos Gage, Giuseppe Camunicoli and Adam Kubert.
There's just one major problem with that: Octavius was inhabiting Peter Parker's body when he was Spider-Man, and Peter has that back now. He is the sole owner of his own body. So how in the world could the Doc Ock Spider-Man's title come back? The easy answer, of course, is simply "comics," but let's explore some of the possible explanations, shall we?
Since they acquired the license for Judge Dredd, IDW has been doing some pretty fantastic stuff with it. Between Duane Swiercynski and Nelson Daniel's ongoing Judge Dredd and miniseries projects like Douglas Wolk and Ulises Farinas's Mega-City Two, they've put out some incredibly entertaining stories, bringing Dredd to a new audience that may not be familiar with his roots in the pages of 2000 AD. Now they're expanding the line beyond Dredd himself.
IDW announced this week that they're launching Anderson: Psi Division, a new series set before the events of the ongoing series that will focus on Judge Cassandra Anderson, written by 2000 AD editor Matt Smith with art by long-time 2000 AD artist Carl Critchlow.
It's been just over a year since Bone creator Jeff Smith kicked off the first season of his prehistoric webcomic Tüki Save the Humans, which gives a fictional account of the first human to leave Africa after the start of a great ice age. It's a big shift from what he was doing on Bone, and it's set to change even more in the coming season, which kicked off on Monday.
A common lament among comics lovers is that there aren't enough books for kids anymore, and it's a valid one. The average comic is written to be understood by preteens and up, while the average reader hovers somewhere around the age 30, and it’s unlikely that this trend is going to reverse anytime soon. But most of those 30-year-olds aren’t readers today because they started in their late teens or early twenties, they’re readers today because they had their initial exposure to comics probably before the age of ten. Even though we’ve been trying to convince the rest of the world that comics aren’t for kids anymore since 1986, kids are absolutely necessary to the medium’s survival. If comic books hope to have a future amidst rapidly-evolving children’s media and Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! program, then a healthy percentage of comics published today need to be geared toward the under-ten crowd, and they need to be good.
Fortunately, we have Mike Kunkel’s Herobear and the Kid: Saving Time#1 to show everybody how it’s done.
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