Boom! Announces First Look Deal With Cartoon Network For Comics And Graphic Novels
First it was Adventure Time. Then it was Regular Show. Now it's Steven Universe, and there's definitely more on the way. If it didn't seem like it before, Boom! Studios' lightning-quick licensed comic book relationship with Cartoon Network has now been made official with an exclusive first look deal. CN's licensing and merchandising arm Cartoon Network Enterprises has partnered with Boom!, giving the publisher the first option to license "all-new Cartoon Network original comedies for adaptation into comics and graphic novels."
The particulars of the deal aren't fully detailed in Boom!'s official announcement, but language seems to suggest that Boom! will have a first look at new shows rather than older series and characters, which are more or less all currently being licensed for comics by IDW. The deal also seems to be distinct from Boom!'s relationship with Frederator Studios and its online Cartoon Hangover component, which is home to Adventure Time creator Pendleton Ward's Bravest Warriors and AT staffer Natasha Allegri's Bee and PuppyCat. DC Entertainment properties, will of course stay at DC Comics and DC Digital for adaptations given that CN and DC are both part of Time Warner.
"Our partners at Cartoon Network have a stellar lineup of new shows that we are looking forward to publish as equally stellar all-ages comics, following the tremendous success of ADVENTURE TIME and REGULAR SHOW,” said BOOM! Studios Founder and CEO Ross Richie in an official press release. “STEVEN UNIVERSE has that same edginess that will resonate with readers—and that’s just the beginning. Wait until you see what else is in the pipeline!"
Adventure Time #1 was announced in 2011 and debuted in 2012. Regular Show #1 was teased for the first time at the beginning of 2013 and the first issue arrived a few months after. Steven Universe comic news surfaced back in October with a four-page story in Adventure Time: 2013 Spoooktacular #1, and its debut issue is set to arrive at an as-yet-unspecified date later this year. Adventure Time has spawned numerous miniseries spinoffs, a series of original graphic novels, annuals and even holiday specials over the span of three years. Regular Show has similarly inspired a Regular Show: Skips miniseries and more additional comics are on the way.
The books are selling well -- Boom! says Regular Show #1 was "the highest-selling title in the publisher’s eight-year history" -- and winning Eisners and other honors. They're also notably making headway in the direct market, the digital market and even nontraditional comic retailer spaces as all-ages material.
Cartoon Network just announced much of its marquee programming for its upcoming fall schedule, so comic readers can start taking bets on which of the new shows will make their way into comics at Boom! or elsewhere (provided Boom! passes on anything that another publisher is interested in later on). So far Uncle Grandpa, Clarence, Over the Garden Wall and We Bare Bears seem like the most likely candidates. Just... please no Annoying Orange comics. Fruit with teeth gives me the creeps, man.