DC announces ‘Absolute Power,’ DC Finest and a return to Wednesdays

DC made several announcements during the ComicsPRO industry meeting this week.

If you’re wondering why so much comic news broke today, it’s because ComicsPRO, the Comics Professional Retail Organization, is hosting its industry meeting over the next three days. As a part of that meeting, comics publishers are presenting some of their future plans to attendees and, in many cases, releasing that news into the wild.

DC was one of many publishers on hand to talk to retailers, and gave several updates on their future plans. But let’s not bury the big news — DC announced at the conference that they plan to move the release of their new issues back to Wednesday. DC moved the release date of their comics from the traditional Wednesday to Tuesday back in 2020, when they moved away from Diamond to Lunar Distribution and other distributors. It was, and remains, a controversial move, and from what I’ve heard retailers gave this news a standing ovation at ComicsPRO today. The shift will occur in July.

In other news …

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Uncle Scrooge returns to comics in a new Marvel one-shot

Jason Aaron will unleash Scrooge into the multiverse in a new story coming this summer.

Uncle Scrooge and his countless multiverse counterparts are coming to Marvel in June, courtesy of Jason Aaron and several comic artists, including Paolo Mottura, Francesco D’ippolito, Vitale Mangiatordi and more.

Uncle $crooge and the Infinity Dime #1 brings Uncle Scrooge back to comics — while it’s certainly not his first foray on the printed page, it is the first time he’s appeared in his own Marvel title. And in the mighty Marvel manner, it’ll introduce several other variants of the duck, including a twisted alternate Scrooge who steals his money bin.

“As far as I’m concerned, there’s no disputing the fact that Uncle Scrooge is one of the absolute greatest characters in the history of comics. And I don’t just mean comics that feature talking animals. I mean all comics ever, bar none,” Aaron said. “Uncle Scrooge’s rich, action-packed history includes some of the most exciting adventure comics ever created, by legendary creators like Carl Barks and Don Rosa. It’s one of the most mind-staggering thrills of my career to get to craft this epic cosmic adventure for the World’s Richest Duck, one that looks to honor the character’s legendary history while taking him to some wild, new, unexplored places in the way that only Marvel can deliver.”

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Phillip Kennedy Johnson + SOM snap their jaws down on ‘Crocodile Black’

The new series kicks off from BOOM! Studios in May.

Writer Phillip Kennedy Johnson and artist SOM will team for a new “macabre thriller” from BOOM! Studios, Crocodile Black.

It’s about a COVID-era kid who goes through a “dark reinvention,” highlighted by his new black crocodile boots.

Crocodile Black is a story about dark reinvention. It’s about hidden trauma, unchecked obsession, the power that masks give us, and a dead man’s black crocodile-skin boots. It’s about a COVID-era kid with no prospects finding something he never knew he wanted, and using it to become someone he never knew he wanted to be: a dangerous man,” Johnson said.

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‘Toxic Avenger’ returns to comics courtesy of Matt Bors + Fred Harper

Ahoy Comics takes us back to Tromaville this fall.

The Toxic Avenger, the star of the 1984 Troma movie of the same name, will return to comics this fall in a new series by Matt Bors (The Nib, Justice Warriors) and Fred Harper (Snelson).

Ahoy Comics will publish the series, which Bors says will combine elements of the original films — it had several sequels — and the Toxic Crusaders cartoon. The original film was about a New Jersey teenager named Melvin who fell into a vat of toxic waste while fleeing bullies and became the Toxic Avenger.

The Toxic Avenger is first and foremost an environmental satire, one about a small town and its unremarkable people trapped and transformed by circumstances they don’t control,” Bors said. “The story Fred Harper and I are telling is about people frustrated by authorities telling them not to worry about their life, that things are fine, even as their dog mutates in front of their eyes. And at its core it is about a powerless boy, Melvin, who finds out he can be incredibly strong, hideously mutated, well-admired, and incredibly heroic… but still ultimately powerless over human behavior.”

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DSTLRY announces Jamie McKelvie’s ‘One for Sorrow’

The gothic thriller will launch from the fledgling publisher in June.

DSTLRY has announced another new series from one of their founding creators, Jamie McKelvie, which will arrive in June. One for Sorrow, which he will write and draw, is described as a “gothic suspense thriller” about a turn-of-the-century serial killer called the Magpie.

“DSTLRY has given me the perfect environment to create One for Sorrow,” McKelvie said. “This series is an opportunity to not only explore themes of darkness and redemption, but also to challenge myself artistically as the sole creator on this project.”

McKelvie has created two different covers for the first issue:

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Deniz Camp + Juan Frigeri relaunch ‘The Ultimates’ in June

A familiar title returns as a part of Marvel’s new Ultimate Universe line.

Marvel’s new Ultimate Universe line will get a familiar addition this summer, as The Ultimates, featuring an Avenger-esque team with Iron Lad, Captain America, Thor, Sif and more, will debut from the team of writer Deniz Camp and artist Juan Frigeri.

The title joins Ultimate Spider-Man, Ultimate X-Men and Ultimate Black Panther as part of the Jonathan Hickman-architected line-up of what could arguably be called Marvel’s most exciting launch in quite awhile.

“The new Ultimates line is the most exciting super hero comics event in years, and it’s humbling to be a part of it,” Camp said. “We are reinventing these classic characters and archetypes to be as surprising and vital as when they were first introduced. Our Ultimates is an evolution not just of the Avengers, but of the whole super hero team concept; from the grand and operatic to the small and personal, The Ultimates will feel like no Avengers or Ultimates comic ever before! That’s our ambition, anyway; tune in to find out if we succeed.“

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Archie’s obsessive fandom helps save the day in ‘Archie Jumbo Comics Digest #348’

Check out an exclusive preview of a new story coming in next week’s digest from Archie Comics.

Hey! We’re back with another preview, courtesy of our friends at Archie Comics. This one’s for a new story appearing in Archie Jumbo Comics Digest #348, which will arrive in stores Feb. 28.

In “The Devil’s in the Details,” Archie’s interview to intern at MLJ Museum with The Shield goes sideways when a swarm of villains show up — but all isn’t as it seems in this story by Ian Flynn, Pat Kennedy, Jim Amash, Glenn Whitmore and Jack Morelli.

BTW, the “MLJ” Museum is a fun Easter egg — it’s a reference to Archie Comics’ original name, M.L.J. Magazines, Inc., which started out publishing superheroes before Archie and the gang were created. It was named for the founders, Maurice Coyne, Louis Silberkleit and John L. Goldwater.

Check out the preview below, along with a complete “classic” Arachie story by Frank Doyle and Stan Goldberg.

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Nominees announced for the 2023 Bram Stoker Awards

Comics by Cullen Bunn, Leomacs, Adam Cesare, David Stoll, Amy Chu, Soo Lee, Junji Ito and Gou Tanabe were nominated this year.

The Horror Writers Association has announced the final nominees for the 2023 Bram Stoker Awards, which includes a graphic novel category.

The annual awards recognize “superior achievement” in horror and dark fiction, with a category dedicated to graphic novels. This year Dark Horse received three nominees, while BOOM! Studios and Viz Media each garnered one nomination. Last year’s winner was Kolchak: The Night Stalker: 50th Anniversary Graphic Novel edited by James Aquilone and published by Moonstone.

The nominees for the “Superior Achievement in a Graphic Novel” category are:

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