WARNING: While the following images have been censored, they remain fairly graphic and may disturb some readers and may also be considered NSFW.
I am so tired of writing about rape.
If you didn't catch the news, last Friday, the website Comic Book Resources posted a five-page preview of the latest issue of the Game of Thrones comic book adaptation. And the pages they published — the pages Dynamite Entertainment sent out as representative of the book, which is a standard practice for comic book publishers — included an incredibly graphic rape scene. Erect penis, front and center. Woman bent back nearly double, naked, arched like a porn star.
It just so happens that was also the week that HBO decided to add—and then vigorously defend — a graphic rape scene in the Game of Thrones TV series (a trend the network continued this week), and that both fall in the middle of Sexual Assault Awareness month — and yes, thanks, HBO, Dynamite and CBR, we are in fact extra aware of sexual assault now, so, well done, there. It's worth noting, too, that this is coming on the heels of an incident where a fellow comics editor and journalist got a slew of graphic rape threats for having the temerity to critique the portrayal of a teen girl in a piece of cover art (also published on CBR).
But it's also not just this week, or this month. It's this year. This decade. This lifetime. This is business as usual.
One of Jack Kirby's most celebrated (if short-lived) post-DC creations is once again getting an all-star treatment from its latest publishing home at Dynamite Entertainment. Coming this July is a new Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers series from writer Joe Casey and an army of artists including Farel Dalrymple, Ulises Farinas, Michel Fiffe, Nathan Fox, Jim Mahfood, Benajmin Marr, Jim Rugg and Connor Willumsen.
A common set of questions at every Valiant Comics panel since Dark Horse wrapped their stint on the properties has been about what's up with a group of characters originally published by Gold Key but later licensed by Valiant in the 1990s: Turok: Dinosaur Hunter, Solar: Man of the Atom and Magnus: Robot Fighter.
Those questions can be put to bed now, as Dynamite Entertainment, not Valiant, has announced a new line of comics via a license with Dreamworks Classics. Also part of the deal is Doctor Spektor, an "occult detective" character who hasn't been seen since a Gold Key run in the mid '70s aside from a series of reprints from Dark Horse.
The latest relaunches of Conan The Barbarian and Red Sonja -- published by Dark Horse and Dynamite, respectively --have revitalized both franchises. Writer Brian Wood's work on Conan has been well-received, and the announcement of Gail Simone writing a new Red Sonja ongoing brought a level of attention and excitement to the character that had not been seen in some time. And though the two series are currently released by separate publishers, the characters remain forever associated with each other. With that in mind, Dynamite Entertainment and Dark Horse have announced they will collaborate to release a crossover between Conan and Red Sonja, to be published by both companies and written by Wood and Simone.
Matt Wagner's next journey into the violent and beautiful world of his signature creation, Grendel, will be in the form of a crossover issue with a character almost as close to the cartoonist's heart: The Shadow. The three-issue prestige format series (48 pages each) will be published by Dynamite Entertainment and finds Wagner's iconic anti-hero Hunter Rose -- a creature of the late 20th century -- traveling back in a time to the 1930s, where he will encounter the Shadow in what if nothing else will be an uncommonly well drawn and designed comic book.
Not to be confused with (or perhaps precisely designed to be confused with) IDW Publishing's award-winning "Artist's Edition" series, Dynamite Entertainment announced on Thursday its own "Art Edition" line of deluxe reprints of classic comic book works, scanned directly from the original artworks so as to include all blue lines, corrections, editorial notes, and other distinctive elements on a heavy stock meant to simulate the weight and feel of the original art boards. The inaugural Art Edition will be Frank Thorne's Red Sonja, presenting the venerable fantasy artist's complete run of Red Sonja comics originally published in Marvel Feature in the 1970s.
Just as Comic-Con International is getting going, Dynamite Entertainment has announced it acquired a slew of high-profile TV licenses that will turn into comics in the near future. NBC's Heroes will be making its return as a comic with writer Cullen Bunn, The Twilight Zone will get a new series written by J. Michael Straczynski, and Robotech will cross over with Voltron. But the one I'm really excited about? The Fox animated series Bob's Burgers is coming to comics.
How's this for a list of writers on an anthology series: Marjorie M. Liu, Mercedes Lackey, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Rhianna Pratchett, Leah Moore, Tamora Pierce, Blair Butler, Nancy Collins, Meljean Brook, Nicola Scott, Devin Grayson. Those are some, but not all of the writers -- novelists and comics pros alike -- who are going to be contributing to Dynamite Entertainment's new Legends of Red Sonja prestige-format miniseries.
Today, Dynamite announced that they were bringing The Phantom, Mandrake the Magician and Flash Gordon back to comic books with the team of Jeff Parker and Marc Laming. The big return is set to take place in an all-new series called King's Watch, in which the Ghost Who Walks, the Savior of the Universe and... uh... Mandrake find themselves battling against forces that threaten the entire world.
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