Comics Lowdown: Chris Ryall rejoins IDW; Joe Illidge out at Valiant

Plus: top comics and graphic novels at comic shops in November! Next ‘Dog Man’ book gets a 5 million copy print run! Kieron Gillen plays ‘Die,’ for real! And much more!

Chris Ryall, who left IDW Publishing in March after serving as editor-in-chief for about 14 years, has rejoined the company as president, publisher and chief creative officer.

“IDW is where I’ve spent the majority of my career, and I consider the company and its employees like family, so I am grateful for this amazing opportunity to return,” Ryall said in a press statement. “I believe that IDW has very significant opportunities to become even more valuable and important, and I am excited to further expand on what I started with the company nearly 15 years ago. I am also eager to help the company celebrate its 20th year anniversary in 2019 in varied and creatively invigorating new ways.”

The current president and publisher, Greg Goldstein, will step down. “I am incredibly proud of all that we’ve accomplished during my decade at IDW,” Goldstein said in a press statement. “I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunity to work with the entire IDW team and our creative and business partners. It’s been a great ride. Now I’m now looking forward to the next chapter of my career. It’s very exciting.”

People: In other personnel news, The Beat reports that Joe Illidge has left Valiant Entertainment. He joined the company back in April.

Comics sales: Diamond Comics Distributors has released sales numbers for November, with the relaunch of Uncanny X-Men topping the charts for the month, followed by the relaunch of Green Lantern. The first trade for Donny Cates’ Venom series topped the graphic novel list. As noted last week, sales in comic shops overall were down in November. The Comichron’s John Jackson Miller offers some further analysis on the charts.

Publishing: Dav Pilkey’s Dog Man: Brawl of the Wild, due out on Christmas Eve, will have a 5 million copy first printing. The kid’s series by the creator of Captain Underpants will also get a new book next August — Dog Man: For Whom the Ball Rolls. These books play really well at my house with my six-year-old.

“I wrote the Dog Man books for the kid I used to be—someone who wanted to do well in school but struggled with reading. I remember feeling like a misfit and an outsider a lot of times and I’m grateful to my parents who believed in me when it was hard to believe in myself. Their support and encouragement set me on a path to becoming an author and artist,” Pilkey said in the press release “Meeting readers while on tour has been the most rewarding and humbling experience. It inspires me to continue to write and illustrate books.”

Interviews: Jim Zub talks to Newsarama about the relaunch of Marvel’s Champions series, set for next year.

Profiles: This piece on Polygon about the new Kieron Gillen/Stephanie Hans role-playing-game-gone-wrong comic Die is a fun read, as Gillen played the game in Die with the folks at Polygon. Good news is, Gillen plans to release the rules of the game to the public after the first story arc, so we can all play.

Best of the year: Rob Salkowitz shares his best of 2018 list at Forbes — a list that includes Gideon Falls, Supergirl: Being Super and Fab4 Mania: A Beatles Obsession and the Concert of a Lifetime.

Best of the year: Abraham Riesman shares his favorite comics of the year at Vulture, a list that includes everyone’s favorite Sabrina, as well as Young Francis, Drawn to Berlin and The Pervert.

Best of the year: Paste Magazine’s best comics of the year list includes Ice Cream Man, Action Comics, Berlin, The Immortal Hulk and Girl Town, among others.

Color of the year: Yep, that’s a real thing someone chose — this year’s color of the year is Living Coral. Bustle picks out books that use it in their cover designs so you can decorate your bookshelves accordingly, and that list includes The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang.

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