No Joke: The New Sabrina is Scary Good

sabrina_01_cover

By Matthew Jent Chilling Adventures of Sabrina #1 Story: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa Artwork: Robert Hack Lettering: Jack Morelli Covers: Robert Hack Publisher: Archie Comic Publications, Inc.   Poor little witch-girl. Where can we start with Sabrina, the Teenage Witch? She has a history that goes back to 1962, which makes her the same age as Spider-Man. […]

NYCC’14: Dark Horse Continues Super Week Announcements With RESIDENT ALIEN

unnamed

By David Nieves Today, Dark Horse sent out word that Peter Hogan (2000 AD, Tom Strong) and Steve Parkhouse (Milkman Murders, Doctor Who) will be returning to Resident Alien for a new stand alone science-fiction/murder-mystery series. Resident Alien: The Sam Hain Mystery #0 is on sale April 29, 2015 and is just the first of […]

THE OCTOBER FACTION #1: Review

OctoberFaction01_cvr-659x1000

The Skeletons Outside The Closet Can Be The Most Dangerous By David Nieves Steve Niles has made a hell of a living in the horror genre. Having critical and commercial success can be a curse on any creator, but he’s constantly found new ways of invigorating humanizing takes on demons and monsters. His latest creation, […]

Jen Wang Aims To Give Gaming A Real World Context For ‘In Real Life’

Jen.Wang

By Kyle Pinion IN REAL LIFE, a graphic novel collaboration between journalist/author Cory Doctorow and comics creator Jen Wang, centers on a young gamer named Anda who becomes enraptured by an massively multiplayer online game (MMO) called “Coarsegold Online”. While logged-in, she makes new friends, including a gregarious fellow gamer named “Sarge” and a “gold-farmer” […]

Happy 24-Hour Comic Day!

image

Beginning at 8am artists were busily drawing, inking, writing, painting, and eating boxes of pizza in an effort to complete a 24 page story in 24 hours. Forcing themselves to stretch the limit of their stamina, hoping to string comic panels into a coherent narrative without the benefit of preparation, pre-planning or a script.

If the artists complete their projects, they’ll earn the satisfaction of achieving something neither Neil Gaiman or Kevin Eastman (Teen-Age Mutant Ninja Turtles) could in the 24 hour continuous time frame. Additionally, if they finish, they are given cover letters and invited to send a copy of their comic to the national 24-Hour Comic Book Day archive, which is hosted by the Ohio State University Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum.

The 24-Hour Comic Day event began simply as an exercise in 1990 by Understanding Comics cartoonist, Scott McCloud, to challenge himself and his friend Stephen R. Bissette. With comic industry big names taking part and spreading the word, metamorphosising into an annual event in 2004. (You can read the history here). Meant to help artists shake off cob-webs, push through blocks, limber up their story telling abilities and push creativity. Examples Scott McCloud and friend’s own attempts at a 24-Hour Comics (including Eastman’s and Gaiman’s) are archived here.

Jason Aaron and Ron Garney get angry in ‘Men of Wrath’

Jason-Aaron-April-2012

by Alexander Jones If Men of Wrath‘s ‘Mail of Wrath’ letters column is true, author Jason Aaron has one bleak family tree. His latest creator-owned title comes from the same deep, dark pit that birthed his previous collaboration in the space, Southern Bastards; and even if he is bringing in a different team for this […]

SPX: Hana Doki Kira – A Beautiful Homage to Shōjo

HDK_Cover

  by Zachary Clemente While at SPX this year, I was able to grab a quick word with seven amazing cartoonists about their work in Hana Doki Kira, a Shōjo comic and illustration anthology released earlier this year after a rather successful Kickstarter campaign. Not only filled with gorgeous work inspired by Shōjo – a sub-genre […]

Thor #1: (Not Yet) A New Beginning

beat-default

By Matthew Jent Thor #1 Credits: Writer: Jason Aaron Artist: Russell Dauterman Color Artist: Matthew Wilson Letterer & Production: VC’s Joe Sabino Cover Artist: Russell Dauterman & Frank Martin Variant Cover Artists: Sara Pichelli & Laura Martin; Esad Ribic; Andrew Robinson; Alex Ross; Fiona Staples; Skottie Young Publisher: Marvel Comics   “There must always be […]

#LBCC ’14 : Richard Starkings on Elephantmen the Movie?

96bea73951b5a58e06f8b06bb7680a01-d3bczk8

by Pam Auditore In a surprise, unscheduled panel,  Sunday Afternoon at Long Beach Comic Con, the charmingly British Richard Starkings, comics letter and writer, held forth on creation of his company Comic Craft–which creates specialized fonts for comics—and on his 60 issues of his noirish- Blade Runner inspired trans-genetic sci-fi comic “Elephantmen,” published by Image Comics.  Starking’s moderator also […]

David Rubín Expands the World of ‘Battling Boy’ with ‘The Rise of Aurora West’

Aurora-Cov-300rgb

By Kyle Pinion and Harper Harris In one week, First Second will be producing the prequel to Paul Pope’s critically lauded and Eisner Award winning Battling Boy entitled The Rise of Aurora West. This new tale, co-written by Pope and J.T. Petty, features art by David Rubín and centers on the journey of Aurora West, daughter of […]

Jen Van Meter explores the First “New” Valiant Leading Lady in the Death-Defying Dr. Mirage

DRMIRAGE_001_COVER_SECOND-PRINTING

By Alexander Jones The Death-Defying Dr. Mirage Issue #1 marked an important change in the history of Valiant Comics. The publisher finally opened up their stable of characters and swapped the gender of Dr. Mirage, turning the character into a widowed super heroine searching for her late husband in the afterlife. The first installment featured […]

World Comics: Lagos Comicon Turns Three

Attendees at the 2013 Lagos Comic Con

The comics scene in Nigeria has been thriving since the 1980s, but has yet to burst into the mainstream. There are tastes of what may soon emerge as youth in Nigeria fully embrace the internet—check out this sci-fi short on YouTube here, which includes an animated spaceship—but comics are still an emerging industry. On Friday, the third annual Lagos Comic Con will launch in the commercial capital of 20 million people. I corresponded with comics creator and co-founder Ayodele Elegba about the event, where we wrote about attractions, popular comics, Ebola, and cosplay.

Marvel Month-to-Month Sales August 2014: A Tale of Two Spiders

detail

This was a tough month for Marvel. Original Sin is ending and none of their other events have really started yet. They also don’t have any real high profile series launches. So there are no books that really pop. There is a lot of attrition this month. Of the 72 books that also had an issue last month, only 12 saw growth in their numbers. That leaves 60 books that dropped in sales. 39 books dropped more than 5% or what might be considered a standard attrition. Luckily there are several major events coming soon which will drive sales up and a lot of books will be relaunching after these events which always bumps up the numbers at least temporarily. It is worrying however, that there are several series that just relaunched a year or for some 6 months ago and are already in trouble again. Let’s look at a breakdown of what came out this month:

DC Comics Month-to Month Sales: August 2014 – Multiversity Selfies

Batman #34

It’s month three of DC’s new variant cover ordering scheme, where retailers can order as many of the month’s themed variant covers as they want at the regular price. As previously suspected, the Selfie variants do not attract as many additional orders as the Bombshell or Batman 75th variants did. It’s hard to tell if that is because of a perceived lack of interest in the covers, or an adjustment based on the previous months, or a combination of factors. Next month DC will have round two of the 3D motion covers, hoping to recapture some of the magic of last year’s 3D cover stunt.

This was a down month for DC. Several of their top sellers did not ship in August: Justice League, Superman Unchained and Sandman Overture. Vertigo sales are particularly moribund: the average Vertigo sales of 9,082 per title is the second lowest since Diamond started reporting actual sales back in 2003. (The lowest month was November 2010, at 9,034.) With The Wake over and Sandman Overture shipping sporadically, Vertigo’s top seller this month is short-timer Fables.

More Publishers Join No-DRM Movement at ComiXology

DRM_protest

By Bruce Lidl A number of comics publishers today joined comiXology’s no-DRM initiative, and will start offering their titles without digital anti-copying technology. Comixology’s announcement at San Diego in July that publishers could now distribute DRM-free focused on a small group of early enthusiasts, including Image Comics, Dynamite Entertainment, Zenescope Entertainment, MonkeyBrain Comics, Thrillbent, and Top Shelf Productions. From conversations […]

How to Survive Micro-Press Publishing at SPX

SPX Logo

by Zachary Clemente This past weekend, the 20th annual Small Press Expo (SPX) brought an explosion of independent and small press comics to the Marriott hotel in Bethesda, MD. Literally overflowing with an abundance of talent, the weekend was filled with amazing creators, signings, panels, even a wedding and a prom. One of the panels, Micro-Press […]