Horror filmmakers David Ian + Rebekah McKendry head to ‘Barstow’ with Tyler Jenkins + Justin Birch

The horror-comedy title arrives from Dark Horse this fall.

Filmmakers David Ian McKendry and Rebekah McKendry will team with artist Tyler Jenkins and letterer Justin Birch for Barstow, a horror comedy coming from Dark Horse later this year.

The McKendrys are the husband and wife team who worked on horror films like Glorious and All the Creatures Were Stirring. Jenkins, meanwhile, is the award-winning artist of titles like Grass Kings and Hairball.

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Mark Waid + Chris Samnee show us the early days of Dick + Bruce in ‘Batman and Robin: Year One’

The 12-issue series begins in October.

The creative team behind beloved runs of Daredevil, Captain America and Black Widow will bring their magic to DC this fall, as Mark Waid and Chris Samnee present Batman and Robin: Year One.

The series will focus on the early days of the relationship between Bruce Wayne and his new ward, Dick Grayson, as they navigate their new roles both as superheroes and father/son. It’ll also introduce a new mob boss, The General, and feature Two-Face.

“While Batman and Robin are the stars of this tale and get most of the panel time, at its heart, this isn’t a Batman/Robin story, it’s a Bruce/Dick story,” Waid said. “It takes place only a month or two after Bruce adopted Dick, and it’s sinking in for Bruce that he has no idea how to be a father to a kid that age. He has no role model—his own father was long dead by the time he was Dick’s age. Nothing he’s ever done has prepared him for this, and Alfred—wise as he is—doesn’t have much experience here either.”

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Joshua Williamson + Scott Snyder are ‘All In’ on DC this fall

DC will launch the Absolute Universe this October, a new line of comics spearheaded by Snyder and Williamson.

Joshua Williamson and Scott Snyder took to YouTube today to announce DC’s next big publishing initiative, the Absolute Universe, as well as DC All In, a one-shot coming in October that will introduce a new universe of DC characters as well as spotlight upcoming storylines in the regular DCU.

If that’s confusing, think of it like this: DC is launching their own version of the Ultimate Universe, which will run parallel to the regular DC Universe. It’s creation, though, is part of the story in DC All In.

Williamson and Snyder will co-write the DC All In one-shot flipbook, which will feature art by Daniel Sampere and Wes Craig. Sampere’s story will focus on the post-Absolute Power DC Universe, while Craig’s will introduce the Absolute Universe — which has an interesting origin.

“If the main universe is sort of predicated on Superman energy right … then this universe is kind of founded on Darkseid energy,” Snyder said, which he described as chaotic, dangerous and wild.

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SDCC | Ryan Parrott + Eleonora Carlini bring ‘Vicarious’ to BOOM!

The new series will debut in October.

BOOM! Studios’ Road to SDCC continues with the announcement of Vicarious by Ryan Parrott and Eleonora Carlini, both of whom have worked on BOOM!’s Power Rangers titles.

Vicarious is about a 20-something who, through technological implants, allows rich old people to experience the world through his eyes.

“There are some ideas that get stuck in your head and you just keep coming back to them over and over again,” Parrott said. “What would it be like to be able to see through someone else’s eyes and feel what they feel? How would that kind of technology change the world? Who would use it, who wouldn’t and why? It was just a notion when I first pitched it to BOOM! Studios, but with their guidance and Eleonora Carlini’s amazing artwork, Vicarious has turned into a sexy, futuristic neo noir that deals with identity, duality and the value of our lives and experiences.”

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Spencer Ackerman + Julius Ohta will reboot ‘Iron Man’ in October

Tony Stark goes to war with Roxxon in the new series.

Gerry Duggan’s run on Invincible Iron Man may have ended today, but an Invincible-less Iron Man will return in October in a new series by journalist and Waller vs. Wildstorm writer Spencer Ackerman and Hellverine artist Julius Ohta.

The new series will see Tony Stark once again running Stark Unlimited and facing off with some familiar threats — AIM and Roxxon. What won’t be familiar is his armor, as Marvel says Tony Stark’s tech will fail him, and he’ll have to put together an “improvised” set that he’ll upgrade throughout the series.

“Winning a Pulitzer is cool and all, but it’s not writing for Marvel Comics,” said Ackerman, who won the Pulitzer while working for The Guardian. “And to write Iron Man is a very specific dream come true. A lot of comics’ best creators have used Iron Man to tell big stories about security and freedom—with a whole lot of super hero action, of course—and I can’t wait to build on their legacy.”  

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SDCC | Jordan Thomas + Daniel Gete enforce over-the-top thrills in ‘Skin Police’ this October

When black market clone babies go bad, the Skin Police are on the case.

Writer Jordan Thomas and artist Daniel Gete have teamed up for a new series that Oni Press calls “one of the most ecstatically over-the-top series” they’ve published.

Skin Police, which debuts this fall, is a fast-paced, science fiction action thriller set in a future where black market clone babies are the norm, but one out of every four turns into a psychopathic killing machine. That’s where The Skin Police come in.

“Skin Police set up shop in my brain as a combination of my love for Blade Runner and my fear of having children,” Thomas said. “It was an idea that wouldn’t go away, which is always a sign that it is one of the good ones. I wanted to take the base human fear of not being able to protect our offspring as well as the general existential fears most of us have about the direction the world is heading and smash it together with adrenaline-fueled, violent, unforgiving action, so the audience gets carried away with the sheer thrill of what is taking place before closing each issue and finding themselves thinking deeper about the more human and terrifying themes that underpin the thrills.”

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SDCC | Brian Azzarello + Vanesa Del Rey bring ‘The Creeping Below’ to BOOM!

The black metal revenge tale begins in October.

With the San Diego Comic Con on the horizon, BOOM! Studios continues to roll out announcements on their “Road to SDCC.” Yesterday brought a big one, as they announced a new revenge story by Brian Azzarello, Vanesa Del Rey and Hilary Jenkins called The Creeping Below.

BOOM! says the new series will be filled with “black metal, magic and Norse mythology,” as a woman killed at a black metal festival in Norway gets a second chance at life.

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Can’t Wait for Wednesday | Top Cow unsheathes a new ‘Witchblade’ title this week

This week brings new comics and graphic novels by Marguerite Bennett, Giuseppe Cafaro, Stephanie Phillips, Alessandro Miracolo, Kelly Thompson, Paulina Ganucheau, Gerard Way, Shaun Simon, Chris Weston, Melissa Flores, Francis Portela, Joe Matt, Mike Maihack, Jason Aaron and more.

Welcome to Can’t Wait for Wednesday, your guide to what comics are arriving in comic book stores, bookstores and on digital.

This week is pretty stacked, with not only a new Witchblade comic debuting, but we also have another X-Men: From the Ashes release, a new Gerard Way comic, Jason Aaron’s return to Marvel, the final Joe Matt comic and much more.

I’ve pulled out some of the other highlights for this week below, but for the complete list of everything you might find at your local comic shop and on digital this week, you’ll want to check out one or more of the following:

As a reminder, things can change and what you find on the above lists may differ from what’s actually arriving in your local shop. So always check with your comics retailer for the final word on availability.

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Check out an exclusive clip from the ‘She Could Fly’ game by Wowbagger Productions

Christopher Cantwell and Martín Morazzo’s Berger Books series has been adapted into a video game about OCD and mental health.

She Could Fly by writer Christopher Cantwell and artist Martín Morazzo achieved liftoff in 2018 from Dark Horse Comics’ Berger Books imprint. It was the first published comic written by Cantwell, and also one that was very personal, as it featured a main character with OCD — something he’s spoken about suffering from since he was 10 years old.

Now She Could Fly has become part of a “documentary game” — the She Could Fly Documentary Escape Game, which is a point and click game from Wowbagger Productions that takes players on a looping adventure to explore OCD.

“For me, in the graphic novel, flying is a form of relief or freedom for the main characters,” Cantwell said. “In my life, what I look for, in terms of relief or freedom, is not happiness but peace of mind. Real peace of mind. Peace of mind is very important to me, and it’s something I’m always striving for. And I hope that by playing this game or reading our story, it helps you find some peace of mind as well.”

The game features artwork by Morazzo and colorist Miroslav Mrva from She Could Fly as part of the gameplay elements, and the creators hope it puts a spotlight on, and helps people understand, how OCD can affect someone.

“The work we do at Wowbagger Productions is very much about collaborating with creatives from marginalised perspectives to share less-known stories,” said Wowbagger Productions founder Sara Kenney, who wrote, directed and produced the game. “This is our first digital game and decades of storytelling and producing experience meant we ensured the comic, documentary and gameplay works together and flows in a meaningful way. Games for impact are an arena that the team at Wowbagger Productions are passionate about and want to continue our work, not just combining art and science, but also the different disciplines of games, comics and film.”

Check out our exclusive video clip below, which shows how some of the comic pages from She Could Fly are used in the game:

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Smash Pages Q&A | Jordan Morris on ‘Youth Group’

The writer of the new graphic novel from First Second talks about his comic book origins, character playlists, collaborating with Bowen McCurdy and more.

If you ever participated in church youth groups as a teenager, you owe it to yourself to check out Youth Group by Jordan Morris and Bowen “Bones” McCurdy.

The genuinely funny story features Kay, whose mom coerces her into attending the youth group at their church in Orange County, where Kay gets to participate in singalongs featuring pop songs where the words have been changed to celebrate Jesus and encourage abstinence, and meet overenthusiastic leaders like Meg. She also discovers that she’s a “Blight,” a person who can’t be possessed by demons, which is both helpful and a hindrance because the Stone Mission Church youth group is really a front for a group of demon hunters fighting a war, and her Blight blood makes her a target.

First Second will publish the graphic novel this week, and Morris was kind enough to answer some of my questions about it

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Bad Idea announces ‘Planet Death’ by Derek Kolstad, Robert Venditti + Tomás Giorello

The last surviving soldier of a battalion sent to destroy an alien weapon must continue his mission alone.

Bad Idea, the boutique comics publisher founded in 2020, has announced a new title coming next year from John Wick screenwriter Derek Kolstad, Hawkman and Green Lantern writer Robert Venditti, and Star Wars artist Tomás Giorello.

Planet Death centers on the lone survivor of an invasion force sent to destroy an alien weapon on a hostile planet. After his battalion is decimated, he continues on alone to try and finish their mission.

Planet Death is my love letter to all of the comics and books I read, movies I watched, and games I played – late into the night with a grin on my face…from Hard Boiled and Ronin by Frank Miller to the films of Alistair MacLean like The Guns of Navarone and Where Eagles Dare to Bradbury, Asimov, and Heinlein, to games like Starcraft and everything in between,” said Kolstad. “Some of my favorite stories are the ones that blend science fiction with elements of the war genre, from Starship Troopers to Aliens and Edge of Tomorrow. With Planet Death we take this tradition and add all those things we love so much about comic books.”

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Sunday Comics | Read these 2024 Eisner nominees online

Check out webcomics by Joe S. Farrar and Guilherme Grandizolli, Jared Lee and Cross, Evan Dahm, Haley Newsome, Cam Marshall, Velinxi and more.

With the Eisner Awards less than two weeks away, I thought I’d highlight some of this year’s nominees that you can find online.

Let’s start with the “Best Short Story” category, where Joe S. Farrar and Guilherme Grandizolli’s “The Lady of the Lake” is nominated. It originally appeared in BUMP: A Horror Anthology #3, which Farrar funded through Kickstarter and now sells on his ko-fi site. But in celebrating the nomination, Farrar posted the short story in full on Twitter, which I think is always a brilliant move, as it’s hard to vote for something if you haven’t read it.

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