The first arc of Scott Snyder and Jock’s Wytches drew to a close with the release of issue #6 and finished just as strongly as it began. Snyder managed to do three things I wasn’t sure he could accomplish in just one issue: he provided satisfying conclusions for the major relationships, demonstrated the scope of the wytches’ power, and left room to continue the story while still delivering a fully-contained arc. Even if the series wasn’t set to continue this Fall/Winter, these six issues would have provided a suspenseful journey into the terrors that live just beneath the surface, complete and yet compelling enough to warrant re-reads.
Created in 1964 by Bill Everett and Stan Lee --- with substantial input from Jack Kirby and Wally Wood --- Daredevil has been brought to life on the page by an extraordinary roster of comics greats, including Gene Colan, David Mazzucchelli, Frank Miller, Alex Maleev, and, in recent years, Chris Samnee, Paolo Rivera, and Marcos Martin. The striking red suit that he's worn since his seventh appearance is one of the best costumes in comics, and creates an irresistible contrast against the grime of Hell's Kitchen. For this special gallery, we've picked out some of our favorite Daredevil pin-ups and images to pay tribute to ol' hornhead.
We make a regular practice at ComicsAlliance of spotlighting particular artists or specific bodies of work, as well as the special qualities of comic book storytelling, but because cartoonists, illustrators and their fans share countless numbers of great pinups, fan art and other illustrations on sites like Flickr, Tumblr, DeviantArt and seemingly infinite art blogs that we’ve created Best Art Ever (This Week), a weekly depository for just some of the pieces of especially compelling artwork that we come across in our regular travels across the Web. Some of it’s new, some of it’s old, some of it’s created by working professionals, some of it’s created by future stars, some of it’s created by talented fans, and some of it’s endearingly silly. All of it is awesome.
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.
This week marks the premiere of Gotham, the new Fox television show focusing on Jim Gordon's first year as a cop in Batman's hometown, and the origins of young Bruce Wayne and the people who will one day become the greatest enemies of his war on crime. That the show exists at all is a testament to how strong Jim Gordon and the rest of the Gotham city Police Department are as heroes in their own rights.
So if Gotham has you in the mood to read about Gordon, Harvey Bullock and the rest of the GCPD -- or if you just want to dive into some solid Batman comics where the spotlight isn't entirely on the Dark Knight -- then I've got some suggestions for great comics about Gotham's top cops!
If you need an incentive to help a two-year-old boy with his leukemia treatment beyond basic human decency, how about an original page from one of the best Batman stories of the past decade?
An eBay seller is auctioning off the above page from Detective Comics #871, the first part of the acclaimed "The Black Mirror" storyline by Scott Snyder and Jock, to help a little boy named Nathaniel, who has acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Jock himself donated the art for the auction.
If you asked me who my favorite writers were in comics today, Scott Snyder's name would be right up there at the top of the list, but I'll be honest with you: That's entirely because of his work on Batman. There's very little of his work outside of my favorite superhero that I've read, including American Vampire -- and that alone is pretty weird when you consider that it's got Dracula in it, and he's a solid #2 on my personal list of the best bat-themed characters in fiction. As a result, I've ben looking forward to checking out some of his other work for a while, and Wytches, the new book coming out from Image, felt like a pretty good place to start trying.
It is, after all written by Snyder and drawn by his Batman: The Black Mirror collaborator Jock, and if there are two creators that I like enough to give a new book a try sight unseen, it's them. Having read the first issue, though, I can tell you that it is very good, but very, very dark.
We are only a few weeks away from the premiere of Gotham, the Batman-adjacent television show focusing on a young Jim Gordon's early days as a cop in Gotham City, and that means that it's time for Fox and DC Comics parent Warner Bros. to ramp up the PR machine to get viewers interested in seeing what the Riddler was up to before he became the Riddler (he was talking about riddles a lot).
But while I may not have been too thrilled with the actual show, there's one pretty awesome thing to come out of it. For a promo, the producers got comics artist Jock (of Judge Dredd, The Losers and Batman: The Black Mirror fame) to recreate key scenes from the pilot episode to use in advertising -- which is a surprisingly rare thing in media based on comics.
When Mondo, the merchandising arm of the celebrated Alamo Drafthouse theater known for selling super-cool movie posters, announced that it would host a convention in Austin, Texas, September 20-21, it wasn't entirely clear what the focus would be. Movies? Artists? Movies about artists?
As it turns out, it's all of the above. In addition to hosting the world-premiere screening of the new documentary about the British comics anthology 2000AD, Future Shock!, the weekend event will also host an array of comic artists, many of which have contributed their talents to film. Some of those artists, including Alex Ross have contributed art to celebrate the 15th anniversary of The Iron Giant.
Okay, so there's good news and bad news. The good news is that ComiXology is having a massive sale on Batman comics, and has knocked a bunch of them down to 99¢ each, which means that you can grab some great stories on the cheap. The bad news? Since this whole thing is in honor of Batman's 75th anniversary, they've put 750 comics on sale, plus a handful of graphic novel collections. All things considered, that's a pretty good problem to have, but still, that can be pretty overwhelming.
Fortunately, we're here to help. As the World's Foremost Batmanologist, I've sifted through the sale to bring you safe bets for what you should be grabbing during the sale. Assuming you've got the obvious ones -- like The Dark Knight Returns, Batman: Year One and the recent runs by Morrison, Snyder, and Capullo -- here's what to grab next!