Eynd of Empyre

Carla Hoffman looks back at Marvel’s Empyre, both as a game-changing “event book” and from a story perspective.

With the world in flux, we can at least count on a major summer event to remain a constant for comic fans. Neither rain nor sleet nor dark of night will keep our Big Two from their appointed rounds of throwing their entire universe (or multiverse, as the case may be) into flux to determine the definitive path for their respective companies. At least until next year.

Let’s look at this year’s Empyre by Dan Slott, Al Ewing and Valerio Schiti, and see if a comic can rock our world harder than real life already has. WARNING: spoilers ahead for the basics of the main Empyre series, so if you’ve read all six issues, grab your comics and read along!

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‘Avengers,’ ‘Battlestar Galactica Counterstrike’ win at the 2020 Dragon Awards

Congratulations to this year’s winners.

The 2020 Dragon Awards were announced this past weekend, recognizing science fiction and fantasy books, movies, video games and comics. The awards are typically given out during Dragon Con, which was held virtually this year.

The awards, which have been presented annually since 2016, recognize comics in two categories — “Best Comic Book” and “Best Graphic Novel.” Winners were selected in an open vote from the general public.

The winners are:

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Mail Call | ‘X-O Manowar’ returns, ‘Death Metal’ one-shots and more

A round-up of news from DC, Marvel, Image Comics, Valiant and more.

Mail Call is a roundup of the announcements we’ve received from comics publishers in our mailboxes recently. Hit the links for more information.

The Dark Nights: Death Metal event grew again this week, as DC announced two new anthology one-shots for November prior to releasing their full November solicitations.

The first one is focused on Lobo and is titled Dark Nights: Death Metal Infinite Hours Exxxtreme! #1. It will feature “Uncle Lobo” telling “familiar yet freaky stories of the DC Universe, exactly as he remembers them: with blood and guts and exxxtreme gratuitous violence.” The creators involved include Frank Tieri, Becky Cloonan, Dale Eaglesham and more, with a cover by Kyle Hotz.

If that one isn’t ridiculous-sounding enough, the second one, Dark Nights: Death Metal The Multiverse Who Laughs “offers the curious—and the brave—a glimpse into the nightmare realities that the Batman Who Laughs has created in tales by creators who know what it means to have a truly twisted sense of misfit humor.” As you can tell by the cover, one of those worlds features evil super pets. It includes stories by Amanda Conner, Patton Oswalt, Jimmy Palmiotti, Scott Snyder, Brandon Thomas, James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson, Chad Hardin and more.

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Nominees announced for the 2020 Dragon Awards

The awards have been presented annually since 2016.

The nominees have been announced for the 2020 Dragon Awards, which have been presented during DragonCon since 2016.

The awards include multiple categories for books, media tie-ins like movies and video games, and two categories for comics — “Best Comic Book” and “Best Graphic Novel” (although the “Best Graphic Novel” nominees are mostly trade paperback collections of comic book serials).

The nominees in those two categories are:

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Can’t Wait for Comics | Chu, Joker Wars, Bliss and more

New comics and graphic novels arrive this week from Tom Gauld, World Citizen Comics, Stan Sakai, John Layman, Al Ewing, Dan Slott, Sean Lewis and more.

Welcome to Can’t Wait for Comics, a look at what’s hitting your comic shop, bookstore or digital platform of choice this week. We’ve got comics, we’ve got graphic novels, we’ve got comic strips … and yeah, that’s about it. Comics of all shapes and sizes.

You can check Comic List to see what’s arriving in your local shop, and the comiXology new releases page for what’s available digitally. As always, you should check with your local shop on their hours, curbside pick-up and mask restrictions, due to COVID-19. Stay safe out there and enjoy some comics.

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What Are You Reading? | Red Goblins, celestial avatars, Klan smashers and Texas blood

See what the Smash Pages crew has checked off their ‘to read’ list lately.

Like I said last week, summertime is the right time for crossovers and comics. This week brought us a taste of Empyre, Marvel’s big crossover event featuring the Avengers, The Fantastic Four, the Kree, the Skrulls, the Blue Area of the Moon, the Swordsman and all that crazy cosmic space action Marvel fans have come to know and love. You can see Carla’s thoughts on it below, along with a list of comics Shane has been buying for his kids and Tom’s thoughts on two politically minded books from DC.

You can tell us what you’ve been reading in the comments below or on social media.

Shane Bailey

Lately my kids have started wanting to read more comics. My little one has always been into them, but now the older kids are as well. So I let them pick out their own comics to read on comiXology Unlimited.

My 9 yr old son picked Amazing Spider-Man: The Red Goblin by Dan Slott and Stuart Immonen, and he loves it. He wouldn’t stop commenting on how crazy scary Norman Osborn is, how it was gross when Carnage bit the head off a rat, and during one issue when the Goblin had a captive and was interrogating him, he wondered aloud over who it was, making guesses and gasping when he found out who it was and that Norman knew who Spider-Man was. It’s great seeing him get excited at things that are old hat for me. It made me appreciate those moments more.

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What Are You Reading? | Spider-Man, Star Trek, JSA and more

See what the Smash Pages crew has checked off their “to read” list lately.

Welcome to another edition of What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at what the Smash Pages crew has been checking off their “to read” list lately. You can play along in the comments if you wish.

Now here we go …

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What Are You Reading? | ‘Avengers,’ Batman, ‘Bleed Them Dry’ and more

See what the Smash Pages crew has checked off their “to read” list lately.

Welcome to another edition of What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at what the Smash Pages crew has been checking off their “to read” list lately. You can play along in the comments if you wish.

Now here we go …

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Davis + Renaud bring the Avengers + Defenders together for ‘Tarot’

New miniseries promises madness and mayhem as they face the Infernal Ichor of Ish’lzog.

Marvel has announced that legendary artist Alan Davis will write a new Avengers/Defenders miniseries called Tarot. He’ll team with French comics artist Paul Renaud.

Tarot is my new project for Marvel that has just been announced,” Renaud wrote on Tumblr. “It is a very clever story Alan Davis wrote for me to draw. Join us for this epic Avengers/Defenders team-up…and you can expect the rest of the whole Marvel Universe to show up as well!!”

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