Hickman heads to space in ‘Frontier’

Hickman will write and draw a new Image Comics series, due in November, described as “like ‘Star Trek,’ but super depressing.”

Polygon has the scoop on a new title coming from Jonathan Hickman, his first to write and draw, I believe, since 2008’s “Pax Romana.” Andy Kuhn will assist with layouts.

Described as “like ‘Star Trek,’ but super depressing,” the comic will detail how Earth joined a peaceful galactic community — then got kicked out for being too violent. Eventually that galactic government finds itself at war, and agrees to let Earth back in if they’ll serve as cannon fodder during the war. So Earth sends their prisoners, who had been kept on the moon, to battle.

“I just wanted the story to reflect kind of how I feel about society right now,” Hickman told Polygon. “Like, why would we assume expansion is going to work out? I mean, I have hope, but that’s it, any expectation I had as a kid when I first started reading this stuff — that the future, or exploration, or colonization is guaranteed — is nonexistent … I have hope, but the idea that some species would take a long, hard look at humanity and think, ‘Yeah, those guys look awesome, got to have them in our utopian society, immediately’ seems like wishful thinking.”

While it has been some time since Hickman provided interior artwork for a series, it’s actually how he got his start, with the Image Comics miniseries “The Nightly News” in 2007, which he both wrote and drew. Even when he doesn’t draw a book, you can see his graphic design skills at work on covers and backmatter in “Manhattan Projects” and “Secret Warriors,” among many other titles.

“Frontier” kicks off in November.

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Europe Comics and Cinebook debut on comiXology

comiXology debuts 15 new titles today, with many more coming soon, including ‘XIII,’ ‘The Survivors,’ ‘Thorgal’ and ‘Lucky Luke.’

comiXology debuted 15 new titles from Europe Comics and Cinebook today, including English versions of “XIII Vol. 17,” “Largo Winch Vol. 15,” “Lucky Luke Vol. 15” and other popular European comics. In addition, they announced more French comics will be available in the coming months.

“French comics have been making major inroads with U.S fans for the last few years at a rate never seen before. With both Europe Comics and Cinebooks, it’s wonderful to see the catalog of amazing English language BD grow at such a phenomenal pace,” said comiXology’s Chip Mosher. “Thanks to this deal, the ‘French Invasion’ of the comics on comiXology continues.”

Selections available today include:

  • 1066 Vol 1 by Patrick Weber
  • Antares Episodes 16 by Leo
  • Blake & Mortimer Vol 13 by various
  • Blast 1 by Mamu Larcenet
  • Crusade Vol 14 by Jean Dufaux and Phillippe Xavier
  • Harmony 1 by Mathieu Reynès
  • The Keeper by Yves Sente and François Boucq
  • Lady S Vol 15 by Philippe Aymond and Jean Van Hamme
  • Largo Winch Vol 15 by Philippe Francq and Jean Van Hamme
  • Lucky Luke Vol 15 by Morris, René Goscinny and various
  • Raptors by Jean Dufaux and Enrico Marini
  • Thorgal Vol 1-3 by Grzegorz Rosinski and Jean Van Hamme
  • Valerian Vol 110 by Jean-Claude Mézières and Pierre Christin
  • Water Memory by Mathieu Reynès and Valérie Vernay
  • XIII Vol 17 by Youri Jigounov, Yves Sente, Jean Van Hamme, William Vance, Jean Giraud and more

While those that are coming soon include:

  • Aldebaran by Leo
  • Alone by Bruno Gazzotti and Fabien Vehlmann
  • Alpha by Youri Jigounov and Mythic
  • Barracuda by Jérémy and Jean Dufaux
  • Berlin by Marvano and Mark Van Oppen
  • Betelgeuse by Leo
  • Billy & Buddy by Jean Roba
  • The Bluecoats by Raoul Cauvin and Willy Lambil
  • Cedric by Laudec and Raoul Cauvin
  • The Chimpanzee by Richard Marazano and Jean-Michel Ponzio
  • Cinebook Recounts by Chauvin, Uderzo, B. Asso, and Bergese
  • Clifton by Bob De Groot and Michel Rodrigue and Turk
  • Damocles by Alain Henriet and Joël Callède
  • Darwin’s Diaries by Sylvain Runberg and Eduardo Ocaña
  • Ducoboo by Zidrou and Godi
  • The Fascinating by André-Paul Duchâteau and René Follet
  • Insiders by Jean-Claude Bertoll and Renaud Garreta
  • I.R.$. by Stephen Desberg and Bernard Vrancken
  • Iznogoud by René Goscinny and Jean Tabary
  • Kenya by Rodolphe and Leo
  • Lament by Grzegorz Rosinski and Jean Dufaux
  • The Last Templar by Miguel Lalor and Raymond Khoury
  • Long John Silver by Xavier Dorison and Mathieu Lauffray
  • The Marquis of Anaon by Matthieu Bonhomme and Fabien Vehlmann
  • Melusine by François Gilson and Clarke
  • Namibia by Bertrand Marchal and Leo
  • Orbital by Sylvain Runberg and Serge Pellé
  • Papyrus by Lucien De Gieter
  • The Rugger Boys by Poupard and Béka
  • The Scorpion by Stephen Desberg and Enrico Marini
  • Spirou & Fantasio by Franquin, Tome and Janry
  • The Survivors by Leo
  • Wayne Shelton by Christian Denayer and Jean Van Hamme
  • Wisher by Giulio De Vita and Sébastien Latour
  • XIII by Youri Jigounov, Yves Sente, Jean Van Hamme, William Vance, Jean Giraud and more
  • Yakari by Job and Derib

Dark Horse teams with metal legends Slayer for comic series

“Slayer: Repentless, Vol. 1” features a story by Jon Schnepp and Guiu Vilanova.

Just in time for the holidays, Dark Horse Comics will release a three issue miniseries taking inspiration from thrash-metal band Slayer. Jon Schnepp (“Metalocalypse”) will write the series, with Guiu Vilanova providing art and Glenn Fabry and Eric Powell providing covers.

Per the press release, the comic is inspired by music videos from Slayer’s recent album, “Repentless,” specifically for the songs “Repentless” and “You Against You.”

“I think of the songs I write as stories,” Slayer’s Kerry King told Rolling Stone. “And if nothing else, they are certainly visual.”

“Slayer: Repentless, Vol. 1,” which suggest there may be more down the road, arrives in December. The band will play a concert this Thursday in San Diego and will appear at Comic-Con International at the Dark Horse booth. Check out the covers for the first issue below:

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Mike Dawson’s ‘Sad-Boy’ zine satirizes 90s autobiographical comics

The ‘Rules For Dating My Daughter’ creator returns with an old-school zine satirizing autobiographical cartooning.

Rules For Dating My Daughter” creator Mike Dawson has gone old school with a new ‘zine about “lonely navel-gazing mopey sad-boys.” And he’s using Kickstarter to fund it.

“Sad-Boy Comix and Stories” satirizes 1990s-style autobiographical cartooning. “Read comics about Sad-Boys adventures on e-Bay, first dates, and his experiences tabling at SPX (the Small Press Expo), all the while making the case that comics don’t have to be limited to infantile stories about grown men in tights punching each other – they can be about real world concerns, like being twenty two years old and liking to look at porn magazines and R. Crumb drawings,” the Kickstarter page reads.

Here’s a sample of what to expect:

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On the rewards front, in addition to the book itself you can pledge $200 for your own “Sad-Boy” style portrait. “Let me lovingly render you in your lonely ‘Eightball’ comics-reading glory, no extra charge for obsessive cross-hatching and beads of sweat,” Dawson writes. The campaign has surpassed its goal, so you know the zine will eventually arrive in your mailbox later this year.

Archie wants to know if you’re Team Veronica or Betty at SDCC

Archie Comics will offer #TeamBetty and #TeamVeronica shirts at Comic-Con, so pick your side now.

With Archie’s new “Betty & Veronica” comic by Adam Hughes arriving in stores this week, it makes sense that Archie Comics would put some promotion behind it at Comic-Con International, which also arrives this week in San Diego. So what better way than asking attendees to declare their allegiance to their favorite?

Per their blog, Archie will sell #TeamBetty and #TeamVeronica T-shirts and lanyards at the convention:

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And for those who like both equally (yeah, right), they’re offering a “neutral” Betty and Veronica shirt, featuring artwork by Hughes:

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All shirts will be available at the Archie Comics Booth #1829 for $25. Lanyards are $5 each.

Dan Hipp to release many wonderful illustrations into the wild this week

The art director of “Teen Titans GO!” has two years’ worth of pop culture images he’s selling on his Big Cartel site.

If you’ve followed artist Dan Hipp (“Amazing Joy Buzzards,” Cartoon Network’s “Teen Titans GO!”) on Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr over the past couple years, you know he’s an artistic machine, cranking out a seemingly endless numbers of pop culture inspired drawings that make you laugh, cry, think or just smile. And this week he’s finally decided to start selling some of them.

“I’ll post several pieces each day, all week. Yes, that includes the covers, the mashups, the small card size illustrations, and probably the one that made you cry tears of nerd majesty,” Hipp wrote on Facebook.

If you’re interested, you’ll need to act fast; based on the number of likes and retweets his illustrations get, these will be hotter than a Mondo art print or finding Articuno. Visit his Big Cartel page early and often all week; today’s pieces are already almost gone. Here are a few you missed out on:

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Titans Comics and Hard Case Crime pull the trigger on comics line

In the comic news frenzy leading up to Comic-Con International, Titan Comics and book publisher Hard Case Crime have announced a new line of “gritty, sexy, violent” crime comics.

For those not familiar, Hard Case Crime publishes pulp/noir crime fiction of the new and classic varieties. They’ve published books by Stephen King, Donald E. Westlake, Michael Crichton, Jason Starr, Max Allan Collins, Ed McBain and many others.

Coming out first is “Triggerman,” written by Walter Hill, director of the cult classic film “The Warriors,” as well as “The Long Riders,” “Streets of Fire,” “48 Hours” and the more recent “Bullet to the Head.” He’ll work with French comics creators and frequent collaborators Matz and Jef. Arriving in stores Oct. 5, “Triggerman” is a Prohibition-era mini-series set in Chiacgo, where a convict “is thrown headfirst into a life of bloodshed and bullets to save the girl he left behind.” Here are a few preview pages Titan provided:

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The following week Peepland arrives, a “semi-autobiographical neo-noir mini-series with a punk edge set in the seedy Times Square peep booths of 1980s New York City.” It’s written by crime novelist and former peep show employee Christa Faust and crime and comic writer Gary Phillips, with art by Andrea Camerini. Here’s a preview page:

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Finally, Titan and Hard Case Crime are also teaming up for a new “Quarry” comic series in 2017, based on the novels by Collins. There’s no art for that one yet, but Titan did provide all the varient covers for Triggerman and Peepland, by such folks as Fay Dalton, Mack Chater, Alex Ronald, Caitlin Yarsky, Camerini, Robert Hack, Dennis Calero and Francisco Paronzini. Admittedly I thought the covers looked pretty cool, they’re the main reason I did this post. Check’em out below:

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Soule & Browne are off to see the Wizord in ‘Curse Words’

Koalas, magical assassins, hogtaurs and more, coming from Image Comics in January.

Get ready to meet Wizord, an “evil wizard in good-wizard disguise,” as Charles Soule and Ryan Browne team for “Curse Words,” winner of this week’s Best New Title for a Comic award.

Announced in the special Comic-Con edition of Entertainment Weekly, Soule (“Daredevil,” “Letter 44,” “Strongman”) and Browne (“God Hates Astronauts”) will pit Wizord and his koala against magical assassins, hogtaurs (like centaurs, but hogs) and other craziness.

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“Dumbledore’s solid. Real powerful wizard. Did some good. Gandalf too. Cool dudes, no doubt. But are they really wizards for TODAY?” Soule asked on Twitter. “That’s the question (Ryan Browne) and I asked ourselves when we started to develop our new book. Who’s the wizard we need?”

“It’s about time that two guys with silent Es at the end of their names got together and told an epic story about a Wizord and a koala,” Browne added.

Published by Image Comics, “Curse Words” is due out in January.

‘Stray’ kickstarts a new bi-monthly series

Writer Vito Delsante and artist Sean Izaakse raise money to publish a new series starring their independent superhero creation.

The team behind the independent superhero comic “Stray” returned this month with a new Kickstarter for a new ongoing series, and a new, additional artist for their first arc. With their Kickstarter funded in a couple of days, now they’re adding several additional stretch goals to the campaign.

Writer Vito Delsante and artist Sean Izaakse funded a “Stray” miniseries through Kickstarter back in 2013, which eventually ended up at Action Lab Entertainment. The story focuses on Rodney Weller, the former teen sidekick to the superhero known as Doberman. When his mentor is killed, Rodney returns to action after five years to solve the murder as Stray. In addition to the miniseries, Stray also appeared in the “Actionverse” crossover series with Molly Danger and Midnight Tiger. It’s kind of to “Nightwing” what “Invincible” is to “Superboy” — and I mean that in a good way.

Joining the creative team for the first arc is artist Phil Cho. As the first arc takes place in both the past and present, Cho will draw the flashback sequences while Izaakse will draw the present-day story.

According to their Kickstarter page: “We are starting a new era for ‘Stray’ as it makes the jump from mini-series to a bi-monthly ongoing at Action Lab Entertainment. When last we saw Rodney, he was one of the heroes saving the world in ‘Actionverse.’ As a result of those events, he has decided to do more for the common man, to leave the ‘superheroing’ to the heroes with super powers. But, things don’t go as he planned as he is pulled into a grand cosmic conspiracy that involves the first girl he ever kissed and a hostile alien force known only as The Intolerance.”

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Read more about the book and their stretch goals on Kickstarter. In addition to the campaign, Delsante and Izaakse have also created a shirt featuring the character to benefit the StubbyDog organization.

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