Next year will be the 30th anniversary of The Dark Knight Returns, which for the three of you who have never heard of it, is considered one the landmark Batman stories of this generation. The story by Frank Miller, Klaus Janson and Lynn Varley not only shaped the way numerous creators and fans viewed Batman, but also opened a space in comics for more mature tales aimed squarely at the adult audience. There's also that new sequel coming, The Dark Knight III, which actually begins later this month. This time around, Frank Miller will actually be teaming with several other creators, including Andy Kubert and Brian Azzarello, to tell the third installment of the aged Batman's adventures.
To commemorate the anniversary of the seminal tale, as well as the latest chapter in the saga, DC Collectibles will be releasing two new pieces featuring this futuristic Batman. Both new collectibles were sculpted by Alterton, and manage to capture both the gritty intensity of Frank Miller's original design and the cleaner, imposing figure that Andy Kubert's linework provides in the upcoming sequel.
Numerous artists have had a crack at DC Collectibles' Batman: Black and White series over the years. The long roster of creators to have their styles translated into sculptures is filled with both classic and current favorites, though there is always room for that roster to expand. While we've seen some of the true masters of the form take their crack at the series, one of DC's brightest silver age stars is only now seeing his style make the leap. That's true of the characters included in the statue series as well. Where once Batman: Black and White was solely focused on the Dark Knight, recent years have seen the line grow to include the rest of the Bat-cast, such as the Joker, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, and now Robin as well.
Announced this week (via MTV), the Batman: Black and White statue series will soon see Carmine Infantino's Batman and Robin join the team. Previously, we'd seen the likes of Dick Sprang, Frank Miller, David Mazzucchelli and Neal Adams get statues based on their immediately recognizable styles, but Infantino's interpretation of Batman had largely gone unappreciated in the line. Now, not only will his Batman be celebrated, but his Robin, too.
When action figures and vinyl collectibles based on your favorite DC heroes aren't enough, you can always turn down the more prestigious statue road. Sure, they're a bit pricier than a six-inch figure, but they bring a certain air of respectability to your collection. Anyone can buy an action figure. It takes a refined eye to know which statues will make a collection pop even more. Probably. I just usually buy the ones that look the coolest.
Today, we're debuting a few cool pieces from DC Collectibles upcoming slate of statues, courtesy of DC Comics. We've got the first look at three upcoming statues from DC Collectibles' Cover Girls, Icons and Super-Villains lines, featuring designs from Jim Lee and Stanley Lau. We've also got a bit more detail on the upcoming Wonder Woman: The Art of War by Bruce Timm statue.
In 2005, DC Collectibles (née DC Direct) launched a statue series of artist interpretations of the Dark Knight inspired in part by the Batman: Black and White comic series. For the most part, the line has focused exclusively on Batman himself, though in the past few years DC has expanded the roster of Black and White to include villains like the Joker and Harley Quinn. Now for the first time, another member of the Bat-family will join the ranks in the form of the all-new Batgirl.
Last year, Cameron Stewart, Brenden Fletcher and Babs Tarr revamped Barbara Gordon to give her a new home, a new life and a whole new look. The fan response was immediate and loud, and the Batgirl of Burnside became a bright spot in the new DC Universe (and catalog) in a post-New 52 reboot world. However, as big of a success as this new Batgirl was, outside of the comics there was no merchandise to support the surprise hit. That changes this month. Thanks to the talented hands of sculptor Irene Matar, Babs Tarr's version of the character has been given life in collectible form for the first time, and the result is tremendous.
Two new Batman: Arkham Knight figures are on the way from DC Collectibles. After the success DC Collectibles has had with the action figure lines based on previous Arkham games, it's not all that surprising to learn the series will continue beyond those pieces already announced and released this year. It's also not surprising that one of the figures will be a Batman variant to go along with the standard armored version that launched in the first series.
Like the Red Hood figure that came out a month ago, the Battle Damaged Batman will only be available at GameStop. Normally, I'm not a big fan of retailer-exclusive figures, but as this is mostly just a repaint/variant of the figure widely available, it's not all that upsetting. According to Gamespot, the November-shipping figure will include a line launcher and batarang, and 25 points of articulation, for $25. The sculpt, by Gentle Giant, is quite detailed for the scale and size, and the distressing to the suit to replicate the damage done by the Scarecrow's goons gives the Dark Knight some nice weathering.
DC Collectibles kicked off San Diego Comic-Con 2015 with a preview event highlighting many of the bigger figures and series we'll be seeing over the course of the next 12 months. From continued support for the Icons and TV series lines to new Designer Series figures and Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice pieces, there's a little bit of something for everyone in DC Collectibles' plans.
As cool as it was to see many of the new items on hand, the stars of the show were the characters getting the Darwyn Cooke touch as part of his Designer wave. Cooke's long been a favorite of mine, and his New Frontier figures from way back when are still some of the most stylish in my collection. Now that he's adding new takes on Batman, Supergirl, Adam Strange and Harley Quinn, I couldn't be happier. Combined with the expansion of the Batman: The Animated Series line to more obscure characters, 2015 and 2016 are shaping up to be a good time for clean, simple designs.
Yes, dear friends, July has arrived, and we draw ever closer to the ultimate comic book convention in the US, and quite possibly the world, San Diego Comic-Con. While many will venture the halls in hopes of seeing the first footage from the current crop of highly-anticipated blockbuster features, or to catch a fleeting glimpse of the hottest stars appearing in iconic roles, the real challenge of SDCC is reserved for the collectors. Yes, once a year, nearly every major toy, statue, replica and plush manufacturer releases a limited edition piece that can only be found on the floor of the San Diego Convention Center.
Devoted fans, aficionados and (unfortunately) re-sellers have been eagerly awaiting the chance to be one of the fortunate few who are able to obtain some of the rarest and most-coveted collectibles to release in a calendar year. Now, with just one week to go, we've gotten almost every last company to reveal its biggest secrets. Collected here for you is a comprehensive list of not just what will be available, but where it will be available, and how much it will cost you (should prices have been provided). This is every comic book toy and collectible exclusive for San Diego Comic-Con 2015.
Following suit with the Batman: Black and White and Superman: Man of Steel signature designer statue lines, Wonder Woman finally got her own line last year. Dubbed Wonder Woman: The Art of War, the series presents full-color depictions of the Amazonian warrior from some of the most iconic artists in DC's employ. These interpretations don't have to be tied to any specific era or version of the character, and merely allow creators like George Perez, Jill Thompson, Cliff Chiang and more to put their own spin on the most powerful woman in comics.
While I'm not personally a fan of Finch's often over-rendered pages and inconsistent character models, the good thing about a statue is that you can't over-hatch it. Thanks to the deft craftsmanship of sculptor Clayburn Moore, the Wonder Woman: The Art of War by David Finch statue manages to be inspired by Finch's work without being held back by the artist's own shortcomings.
With just a hair over a six weeks to go until San Diego Comic-Con, companies have been slowly dropping hints about what to expect in the way of exclusive merchandise at this year's show. As expected, DC Collectibles will have some choice items up for grabs at the event.
Previous SDCCs have seen a fairly diverse line-up from DC Collectibles, but in 2014 the company really only had a limited Batman: Arkham City Harley Quinn statue. Fortunately, the merchandise side of the DC Comics brand is offering two unique collectibles this year that'll be a tiny bit more affordable... provided you can get one at the show itself.
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