About a decade after the formation of the Comics Code Authority in 1954 effectively killed off EC Comics' popular line of horror comics, Warren Publishing aimed to bring back some of that malevolent magic. The result was the anthology series Creepy (and later, its sister book, Eerie). Published as a black-and-white magazine, the series didn't have to adhere to the Comics Code's strict content standards, and as such, was able to push the envelope in ways comics in the mid-1960s generally couldn't.
Now, the book's current publisher, Dark Horse, is celebrating the magazine's 50th anniversary with a big, blowout issue featuring work by Fred Van Lente, Corinna Bechko, Dustin Nguyen, Peter Bagge, Alison Sampson, and Art Baltazar, among others.
In my experience, the best comics are the ones that answer questions that you didn't even know you were asking until you saw them, and Wild's End #1 does that pretty beautifully. The question: Wouldn't War of The Worlds have been better if it was about a sleepy English hamlet populated entirely by friendly anthropomorphic animals? The answer: Yes. Yes it would be.
As weird as that premise sounds, it's not that shocking that the book would turn out great. It's the product of writer Dan Abnett (Guardians of the Galaxy) and artist INJ Culbard (Brass Sun), and if there's one thing I've learned from previous experience with those creators, it's that they're more than capable of taking strange sci-fi premises and running with them to create something incredible -- which is exactly what they've done here.
Hawkeye is building ever closer to its apparent end (next month's issue is "The Finale Part 1"), and from the looks of the issue coming out this week, things are building to a head.
Hawkeye Kate Bishop, who took off to start her own private investigation firm in L.A. a few issues back, is looking for a way back to New York in issue #20 to help out also-Hawkeye Clint Barton, who readers last saw in the jam of all jams, and trying to assemble all the help he could get. But, of course, it isn't going to be easy. She's got cops breathing down her neck and one very angry supervillain in a mask attempting to bring her down.
Check out four pages (plus a recap) from the issue by Matt Fraction, Annie Wu and Matt Hollingsworth, plus a cover by David Aja, below.
Here's the thing about Boulet: As amazing as that guy's comics are, and stories like "The Long Journey" and "Darkness," the most incredible thing about them is how suddenly they appear. You're just minding your own business one day and then boom, there's a new forty-page Boulet masterpiece out there, and whatever you thought you were going to do that day becomes "read this new Boulet comic and then probably also all the others that I've already read." They're that good.
And that, my friends, is exactly what happened this week when the French cartoonist dropped "Kingdom Lost," a story that starts out with classic high fantasy and turns into something completely different.
Originally published as a set of odd, ominous webcomic stories, cartoonist Wes Craig's Blackhand Comics will see print in October as a graphic novel collection from Image.
Three stories make up the volume: "The Gravedigger's Union," "Circus Day," and "The Seed." From the looks of them, they're going to be great additions to any horror lover's spooky comics collection, and excellent Halloween reads.
Few publishers have been willing to take risks and expand their slate like Archie Comics has over the last several years. Once famous for old fashioned Americana, Archie has increased the diversity of its character roster, launched a number of well-received cross-promotions like its series with the band Kiss, welcomed real-world guest stars like Sarah Palin and Barack Obama to Riverdale, revived its line of superhero titles, and most surprisingly (and successfully), branched out into no-holds-barred horror with the smash hit mature-readers zombie title, Afterlife With Archie.
This October, Archie's banking on lightning striking twice when it debuts The Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina, a series that places the company's famous "teenage witch" in a world of deep psychological occult horror.
We sat down with the series' creative team of writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and artist Robert Hack to ask some questions about their goals for Sabrina and to talk about how one undertakes such a radical re-envisioning of an established character.
If you read our interview with Steven Universe comics creators Jeremy Sorese and Coleman Engle, then you saw them talking about the story that would become Steven Universe #2. Originally set to be the first issue of the series, it revolves around the annual Beach City Bike Race, with Steven dead set on entering, despite complaints from the Crystal Gems, because they're afraid that the danger would result in his death and they're uncomfortable and unfamiliar with ideas about mortality among humans. Really.
A few weeks ago, we covered the announcement of Eternal Warrior: Days of Steel, the new miniseries from Valiant by Peter Milligan and Cary Nord, and showed off some of Nord's absolutely stunning art. If, however, you are one of our more sharp-eyed readers, you may have thought "hey, these pages don't have the color or lettering that I usually see in my superhero comics! I wonder what they'd look like if they were finished?"
Wonder no more, dear reader! Today, you can have a look at the first six pages of the story in beautiful color, complete with Milligan's dialogue. The story focuses on an adventure from the early days of Gilad Anni-Pada, one of a trio of immortal brothers that also includes Armstrong (of Archer & Armstrong), and it gives Nord's artwork an amazing opportunity to shine.
When I talked to writers Matt Kindt and Jeff Lemire about their new Valiant Comics miniseries The Valiant at San Diego Comic-Con this year, they said that the kernel of the story, the real heart of it, was something small and personal.
It's not that I don't believe them -- the new, nine-page preview of the series released by Valiant this week includes one page in which Geomancer has a conversation with an unseen person in a library, and it's fairly quiet -- but the eight other pages are full of historical battles, prehistoric battles, future battles, and mythical battles. There are a lot of battles, with Eternal Warrior in the center of some, and Bloodshot in a few others. Artist Paolo Rivera makes it all seem gigantic.
One of the best things about digital comics is that you can read them online pretty much anywhere, but sometimes, every now and then, you want to read them in print. Whether it's the extra features that inevitably come with a printed collection, the texture of paper or just the comforting reminder that physical objects exist and you are therefore not alone and isolated in a formless void, printed webcomics have a lot to offer today's discerning reader, and Dark Horse is stepping up to give you three of the most exciting collections of the year.
Set for release next spring, Eisner winning digital comic Bandette and the webcomic Polar: Eye For An Eye are returning to Dark Horse for the book trade customers, but the third, Murder Book is a newcomer, and it looks awesome.
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