When Marvel first announced an ongoing Scarlet Witch series from writer James Robinson, there was a conspicuous lack of an artist attached. On the one hand, it was a bad sign; announcing books without artists tends to devalue the role of artists. On the other hand, it was also a good sign; it spoke to Marvel's efforts to put the right artists on the right books, and perhaps specifically to assign diverse talent to diverse books, like artist Natacha Bustos on Moon Girl & Devil Dinosaur, and writer Jose Molina on the Santerians revival.
To that end, a lot of fans were hoping Wanda Maximoff's first solo series would not come from an all-male creative team. The good news is that those fans have got their wish, with Vanesa R. Del Rey now joining Robinson on the title. The bad news is that it's only for one issue.
Airboy is a four-issue miniseries written by James Robinson and illustrated by Greg Hinkle, and published by Image Comics. Its premise is that Robinson and Hinkle, portrayed as fictionalized versions of themselves, are tapped to revamp an obscure Golden Age character. Robinson suffers writer's block, which hanging out with Hinkle doesn't help; the two of them wind up injecting, inhaling and eating the equivalent of a small pharmacy and go on a bender. When they awaken, they find that the creation they were tasked to revamp, Airboy, has sprung to four-color life, and he sees much wrong with the world – possibly rightly, possibly wrongly.
So far, so good. It's metafiction, but speaking as someone whose shelves groan under the weight of Grant Morrison and Terry Pratchett, there's nothing wrong with a good metafiction that blurs the line between creation and creator. But there's a dark side to blurring that line, and that dark side is that it makes it difficult to tell where the fictional character ends and the real person's opinions begin – and that's lent an odious air when the opinions ventured in the narrative are wrongheaded and harmful.
Armor Wars was one of the first batch of titles teased by Marvel in the early days of its promotion for the upcoming Secret Wars summer event; with only a few spots left to reveal on the Battleworld map, Armor Wars is now one of the last titles to be formally announced, and ComicsAlliance can exclusively reveal that the creative team of writer James Robinson and artist Marcio Takara will be the readers' guides for this corner of Marvel's strange new universe.
The original Armor Wars story in Iron Man #225-#231, by David Michelinie, Bob Layton, Mark D. Bright and Barry Windsor-Smith saw Tony Stark tracking down villains and rivals who had built armor based on stolen Stark designs. In this new Armor Wars there are two Starks --- Tony and Arno --- going head-to-head in a world where everyone has to wear armor, and one of the armored heroes has been murdered.
It's a high-tech murder mystery, but Robinson promises "a big armor war in each issue." We spoke to Robinson and Takara to learn more about the Armor Wars world of Technopolis, and we cracked open Takara's sketchbook to see some of his awesome armor designs.
You probably haven't heard since they haven't really been making a big deal of it, but this year marks the official 75th Anniversary of Marvel Comics. Sort of. It actually marks the 75th anniversary of the publication of Marvel Comics #1, which introduced the world to the Human Torch and paved the way for the company that would eventually become the modern Marvel Comics which really came about in 1961, but you know what? That's a good enough reason for a party.
To that end, this week saw the release of the Marvel 75th Anniversary Celebration, an anthology that caught my eye mostly because it features legendary and still hugely popular Batman: The Animated Series co-creator Bruce Timm adapting a Captain America story written by Stan Lee in 1941, and that is definitely something that I want to read. But with 55 pages in the anthology, there's a heck of a lot more in there besides, including the return of Alias by the original creative team of Bendis, Gaydos and Hollingsworth, and essays by comics journalists including our own Andrew Wheeler, making this one of those rare anthologies where it's all pretty good stuff.
If our weekly Ask Chris column isn't enough of definitive comic book (and pro wrestling) opinions for you, good news: ComicsAlliance is proud to present Here's The Thing, a series of videos where you can join our own extremely opinionated senior writer, Chris Sims, as he sits in his living room under a framed portrait of Destro, drinking a cup of coffee and sharing his opinion on comic books.
This week, Chris sets out to read comic book dialogue in a way that it was never meant to be read: Out loud. With a few of his own favorites and some suggestions from viewers, Chris reads out the classic awkward dialogue of creators like James Robinson, Mark Millar, and even Jack Kirby.
I have pretty strong feelings about Peter Parker's parents. To put them succinctly, I don't think they should matter. Peter's parents are dead, and that's that. Uncle Ben and Aunt May raised him, and they're the ones we should care about.
I say that to explain upfront that Amazing Spider-Man: FamilyBusiness, the new graphic novel by Mark Waid, James Robinson, Gabrielle Dell'Otto and Werther Dell'Ederawas fighting an uphill battle with me from about the fifth page in. The story hinges quite a bit on Peter's family history, specifically on his parents' history as spies in the CIA. In the end, the team's charming mix of spies and Spidey mostly won me over, though not everything completely gels.
Kansas City's Planet Comicon has steadily grown into what may be the biggest comics and pop culture convention in the Midwest. After spending several years in the Overland Park Convention Center, a mid-sized facility in a suburb of Kansas City, last year Planet Comicon moved to Bartle Hall, a much bigger facility in the heart of downtown. This year, the convention doubled in floorspace, drew cosplayers likes flies to vinegar, and brought in a litany of television and pop culture stars, including legendary rapper Darryl "DMC" McDaniels, pretty much the entire cast of Star Trek: The Next Generation, and the puffy one himself, Sir William Freaking Shatner.
But this site is called ComicsAlliance, and what we really care about are the comics and the creators who make them. Click onwards for a sometimes-blurry Blackberry camera gallery of guests, friends, and artist alley residents of one of the fastest-growing cons in the country.
One of the most significant -- and to many readers, one of the most exciting -- developments in comics in the last few years has been the growth of Image Comics, with many of the most popular writers and artists in the industry currently producing much, if not all, of their creator owned work through the publisher. As such, Image Expo has become a highly anticipated event, as publisher Eric Stephenson uses the annual show to announce several upcoming books from both established and new talent.
Today's Image Expo continued that tradition, as more than a dozen new titles were announced, from Ed Brubaker, Grant Morrison, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Chris Burnham, Matt Fraction, Rick Remender and more.
Fantastic Fourends in January 2014 with issue 16. In related news, Fantastic Four kicks off with a brand-new No. 1 issue in February.
As has been the case in recent months, Marvel is starting the numbering anew as a fresh creative team comes on board. And according to USA Today, that team will be writer James Robinson and artist Leonard Kirk.
This morning via USA Today, Marvel unveiled its next wave of new titles. Following last year's successful Marvel NOW initiative, this second wave is titled "All-New Marvel NOW" and will feature the previously announcedInhuman by Matt Fraction and Joe Madureira, and the newly revealed All-New Invaders by James Robinson and Steve Pugh.
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