‘Ragnarök’ returns in July

Walt Simonson presents a new six-issue storyline in his Norse mythology epic.

Walt Simonson’s Norse mythology epic Ragnarök will return in July for a six-issue storyline titled “The Breaking of Helheim.”

The story picks up after the end of the last series, as Thor hears a voice from the past.

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‘Section Zero’ returns at Image Comics

Karl Kesel and Tom Grummett’s Gorilla Comics title will finally conclude in comic book form.

It’s been 20 years, but Image Comics is declassifying the adventures of Tom Grummett and Karl Kesel’s Section Zero. One of the original Gorilla Comics titles will return to comic book form thanks to Image Comics.

“Ever since 2000, Tom and I have constantly tried to bring Section Zero back,” Kesel said in a press release. “Almost two decades later, we finally found a way to finish what we’d begun. The cherry on top is seeing the book return to where it all started—Image Comics.”

The series will be published by Image/Shadowline Comics this April. Here’s Grummett’s cover for the first issue:

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Comics Lowdown: Jack Kirby special edition

A roundup of some of the Jack Kirby 100th birthday news this week!

Not only is it “Kirby Week” here on Smash Pages, but the entire comic industry has come together to honor and remember one of the industry’s greatest and most influential creators, Jack Kirby, for what would have been his 100th birthday. Here’s a round-up of links related to “The King.”

The first place to check is Marvel.com, which has an entire section dedicated to Jack Kirby. The colorful articles have been posted throughout the month of August, with reading lists, character features and articles by Jim Zub, Carlos Pacheco, Mark Waid and Mike Allred. Plus there are several videos about the life of Jack Kirby.

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Don’t tell Thor: Walt Simonson covers Titan’s Hercules series

‘Hercules: Wrath of the Heavens’ debuts this August from the team of JDMorvan, Looky and Olivier Thill.

Known for his bold interpretations of Norse mythology in the pages of Thor and Ragnarok, Walt Simonson takes leave from the halls of Asgard to cover a new comic featuring a different pantheon — Hercules: Wrath of the Heavens.

Titan Comics will launch the new series by writer JDMorvan and artists Looky and Olivier Thill in August, which will feature a new take on the Greek demigod’s fabled 12 labors. The new series launches in August. Check out Simonson’s cover for the first issue below.

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1990s Era Color Guide by Walt Simonson

As part of a larger piece on the comics coloring process by Glenn Whitmore Smash Pages uncovered a 1990s era color guide by Walt Simonson, along with this supplemental contextual data.

The separator, which for much of comics history was Chemical Color Plate in Connecticut, would make nine acetate prints of the original art, one for each percentage of each color.

The black and white artwork – originally drawn at twice the printed size, then 1½ times, and currently slightly less than that — was photographed, reduced and printed on sheets of clear acetate. Nine copies were made of each page – one for each of the three percentages of the three colors – and these were turned over to a separator.

Using the colored artwork as a guide, areas on the acetates would be filled in with an opaque paint (Rubylith) to correspond to the color(s) necessary.

Once the color guides were fully “translated” and the acetates were finished, they would be photographed with appropriate screens to create a single version which included the percentage dots and the solid of one color. These three new pieces of film, along with a fourth clean version of the art which was used to make the black, were used to make the printing plates.

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