Over the past few months, we've been slowly freaking out over the Mondo gallery's tribute to Batman's 75th anniversary. Every time a new set of art was revealed, the show looked better and better, and now that it's actually open down in Austin, our suspicions have been confirmed: The art for this show is incredible.
Not only do they have the portraits inspired by Batman '66 and the beautifully designed posters inspired by the movies and classic episodes of Batman: The Animated Series, but the gallery features work from comic book artists Francesco Francavilla and Jock, too. Fittingly enough, the two collaborated on an amazing piece based on "The Black Mirror," the excellent Scott Snyder story they both contributed to, but Francavilla also took on a poster inspired by Kelley Jones and Doug Moench's classic Elsewords Batman & Dracula: Red Rain, and Jock produced a pair of pieces based on Frank Miller's Batman: Year One that I'm pretty sure I desperately need to own.
The 'Doctor Strange' casting has come full circle. After a series of stops and starts (we're looking at you, Joaquin Phoenix), Marvel has returned to one of the very first actors they had their eye on for their upcoming superhero movie: Benedict Cumberbatch. Deadline is reporting that the 'Sherlock' star is in "final negotiations" with Marvel to star in 'Doctor Strange' and, presumably, a number of other big 'Avengers' style crossover movies.
Another week, another batch of Marvel promos for summer 2015 events with familiar titles: Infinity Gauntlet, House of M, Old Man Logan, Inumans: Attilan Rising. They joins a slew of other recycled titles including Armor Wars, Civil War, and Planet Hulk.
Then, today, things changed up a little. Marvel sent out an email for its newest summer 2015 event in the same format as it has been (one image with no text besides a title), but it doesn't have the title of an old series, though it does share a subtitle with a series of books that started about 12 years ago. It's called simply Ultimate Universe: The End.
t's pretty common knowledge that Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was based on the Japanese show, Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger, but even most fans who loved the show as kids (or in our case, as adults) have never seen the source material. Despite twenty years of popularity for the American adaptation (and fan-subbed releases over the internet), the original shows have never had an official release on this side of the Pacific -- cue dramatic music -- until now!
For fans of international comics, 2015 is already stacking up very nicely indeed in terms of translated material: the Lastman series, David Rubin's The Hero from Dark Horse, as well as his Beowulf adaptation with Santiago Garcia- to be published by Image, who are also releasing an English edition of Ken Niimura's Henshin; no doubt there'll be another installment of Frederik Peeters' Aama from Self Made Hero, books 3 and 4 of Fabien Vehlmann's and Bruno Gazzotti's Alone, and hopefully more that are yet to be announced. And that's without even touching any manga releases. It looks to be shaping up into another excellent year.
Adding to that pile are NBM with an English language release of Etienne Davodeau's award-winning Lulu: femme neu (Lulu: naked woman), re-titled Jude: Nude. Originally published in two volumes in 2008 and 2010, Davodeau's story of a woman who decides to suddenly take off one day after a job interview goes horribly wrong, leaving her husband and children to make time for, and discover, herself. What was a sudden whim to go to the beach turns into a longer journey in which she meets other people, many of whom are living in similarly odd circumstances. Lulu won a host of awards, including the Prize "Essential" at the 2009 Angouleme Festival and was also adapted into a movie of the same name in 2013.
Those of you who keep track of the ComicsAlliance staff for shipping purposes may have been wondering what former editor Caleb Goellner has been up to since he left the site earlier this year. As it happens, he's been over at Wacom, and while working on tablets used for digital art is still pretty close to comics -- indeed, many comics artists use the technology to create their comics -- the company is nudging even closer with the announcement of the first-ever Wacom comics anthology.
Built around the theme of "Pressure/Sensitivity" (geddit?), the anthology will feature the talents of cover artist and ComicsAlliance favorite Ulises Farinas with stories by the equally esteemed Meredith Gran, Ming Doyle, Giannis Milanogiannis and more. Even better, the 32-page anthology will be free to download when it's released in January.
Pretty soon we'll be surprised to find out that TV shows that aren't based on comics are being developed.
The newest comics-based show coming to the airwaves is Riverdale, an Archie Comics series that has been picked up by Fox. Arrow and The Flash producer Greg Berlanti's production studio will produce the show, and the pilot will be written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Archie Comics' chief creative officer and writer of Afterlife with Archie. According to an Archie Comics press release, the show will be more like Twin Peaks than Leave it to Beaver.
Next month, the world's most famous fictional Private Dick / Sex Machine / Bad MotherSHUTYOURMOUTH will make his first-ever appearance on comic shop shelves, when Dynamite Entertainment releases the premiere issue of Shaft, by the creative team of David Walker and Bilquis Evely. And while John Shaft is a well known figure to moviegoers and soul music listeners worldwide, this title promises to focus on the rough-and-tumble version of the character that originated in Ernest Tidyman's series of novels. We spoke to series writer Walker about the character's long history in multiple media, and his plans for the comic incarnation.
The first trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron was supposed to air on ABC on Tuesday during Agents of SHIELD, no doubt to give that show's flagging ratings a boost in its altogether better second year. But even the best laid plans of the rigorous pleasure-engineers at Disney/Marvel can't compete with all the weaknesses of humanity, with its strange impetuous need to leak trivialities into the ether like they were Watergate tapes. Which is why Mickey Mouse is going to replace us all with obedient machines programmed only to smile.
I'm going to go ahead and assume that if you're reading this, you're probably already familiar with Grant Morrison. That said, even if you've gone back and read through everything from Animal Man on up trying to put together a comprehensive, unifying theory of his work, then there's still a piece of the puzzle that you might be missing: Zenith, the story about a teenage superhero that he and Steve Yeowell created in the pages of 2000 AD. Aside from a limited edition hardcover that sold out quick last year, it hasn't been reprinted until this week, when 2000 AD released it as the first title that they've ever simultaneously printed on both sides of the Atlantic.
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