HarperCollins to release ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ graphic novel

Harper Lee’s classic novel will be adapted by Fred Fordham and released in November 2018.

Artist Fred Fordham will adapt Harper Lee’s classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird into a graphic novel, HarperCollins announced this week.

“Adapting a story that means so much to so many, and finding the appropriate art style to give it life in a long-form visual medium, is a great honor and responsibility, and, mercifully, also a great pleasure,” Fordham said in a statement.

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Comics Lowdown: Police look for owner of missing comics

Plus: Recognizing colorists, BookExpo reports, Chapterhouse signs with Diamond, Eleanor Davis, Gerard Way and more.

It’s 10 p.m. Do you know where your comics are? Police in Salt Lake City are looking for the owner of a stash of comics that was found, along with other suspected stolen goods, in a black chest under a tarp in the back yard of a local house. The items were turned up during a burglary investigation last year. (The story is a little convoluted.) The recovered items also included valuable pennies and baseball cards.

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Smash Pages Q&A: ‘Benny and Penny’ creator Geoffrey Hayes

Brigid Alverson shares a previously unpublished interview with the creator, who passed away last weekend.

Geoffrey Hayes, the creator of TOON Books’ Benny and Penny series, died last weekend at the age of 69. I met him just once, at the American Library Association midsummer meeting in 2010.

I was actually a longtime fan of his work, because my children loved his Otto and Uncle Tooth picture books. Geoffrey came to comics fairly late, after an artistic dry spell—Francoise Mouly somehow knew to call him and have him create the Benny and Penny comics for TOON Books. But he had always lived a creative life; while I was doing research to write an appreciation, I ran across this essay in which he talks about how he and his brother, Rory Hayes (who was known as an underground cartoonist) spent their childhood creating stories together.

When I heard about Geoffrey’s death, I went through my files looking for a photo of him, and I was surprised to find an interview that I had done in 2010 but never published anywhere. So here it is, seven years later. As delightful as it was to relive that moment, I was also saddened when I got to the end, where he talks about the graphic novel he was working on. That book, Lovo and the Firewolf, was to be his magnum opus, and Fantagraphics was going to publish it next year. His death leaves it incomplete.

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‘Elsewhere’ transports Amelia Earhart to an alien world

Jay Faerber and Sumeyye Kesgin take the aviator on a fantastic journey in a new comic from Image.

Copperhead and Noble Causes writer Jay Faerber will team with artist Sumeyye Kesgin to reveal what really happened to famed aviator Amelia Earhart in a story involving alien worlds and flying beasts. Elsewhere debuts from Image Comics this August.

Elsewhere is the kind of series I’ve wanted to tackle for a long time, with exotic characters, fantastic creatures, and huge scope,” Faerber said in a press release. “But I needed a relatable character to hang everything on. I found that character in Amelia Earhart—she’s inspiring, courageous, and most of all, real. And I’ve found the perfect partner to help me navigate this thrilling adventure: artist Sumeyye Kesgin. She’s incredible, and absolutely vital to bringing this world to life.”

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Valiant hits the road with the Vans Warped Tour

The comics publisher will set up a booth at select stops, where attendees can buy merchandise and get a free comic.

This summer Valiant Entertainment is joining American Authors, Goldfinger, The Ataris, The Dickies, Bowling for Soup, Gwar, Eternal Boy and a host of other bands for the Vans Warped Tour, which kicks off June 16 in Seattle. In addition to using Valiant’s characters in its promotional pieces and merchandise (and its website) as part of its “super hero” theme, the Warped Tour will also include a Valiant Entertainment booth at several of its stops. And with the booth come merchandise and free comics.

Via press release, Valiant shared a look at the merch they’ll have at the show, including T-shirts, bandanas and stickers featuring their characters. In addition, they’ll offer an as-yet-unrevealed free comic for attendees, which will debut at the tour stops.

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D + Q announces, then cancels, Berliac’s ‘Sadbøi’

Publisher sites 2015 essay “comparing cultural appropriation and transgender people” as a reason they canceled the project.

Three days after announcing plans to publish Sadbøi by cartoonist Berliac, Drawn & Quarterly issued an apology and said they no longer plan to release the graphic novel.

The quick version:

  1. The project was announced last Tuesday, which spurred several reactions on social media.
  2. The issues raised mainly centered around statements Berliac made in 2015 in an essay comparing cultural appropriation and transgender people, and his subsequent reaction to criticism of that essay.
  3. Berliac responded to D+Q’s decision on Facebook.

So what’s this all about? Let’s break it down …

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Andrew MacLean’s ‘Head Lopper’ goes vinyl

Get your own vinyl figure of Norgal, the head-lopping star of the Image Comics title.

Norgal, the star of Andrew MacLean’s Head Lopper title, will become a fist-pumping vinyl figure, thanks to Skelton Crew Studio.

Skelton Crew will produce two different Norgal figures — your standard Norgal, and your “bog blue” variant. You can purchase them now for $48 each; after July 2 the regular Norgal will go up in price to $55, while blue Norgal will no longer be available. Also, if you order the regular one in June, you’ll get a map of Barra, the setting for Norgal’s head lopping in the first four issues of the Image Comics title.

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Comics Lowdown: The woman behind Wonder Woman

Plus: ‘Revolutionary Girl Utena’ returns, Red Planet opens in Albuquerque, Melanie Gillman, Alex Segura, Harley Quinn and more.

The Wonder Woman movie has lots of people looking at the history of the character and how she has evolved over the years. The Fresh Toast has a great interview with Trina Robbins, the first woman to draw Wonder Woman and a pioneering underground comics artist and comics historian as well. She’s a delightful person who has had a fascinating life, and this interview is a great way to start off your week.

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Sunday Comics: Wonder Woman and comics retailing

Check out new comics by Lucy Bellwood, Sarah Mirk, Big Nate and more.

Every Sunday, we round up the best comics we’ve seen online in the past week. If we missed something, let us know in the comments below.

We’ve got a short post this week to leave you more time to read New York Stories, a sampler of great short comics about New York City from some top-drawer talents.

However, we’d be remiss in not mentioning What Does Wonder Woman Actually Represent? by Lucy Bellwood and Sarah Mirk, a look at how Diana has changed over the years.

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