Young + Strahm’s ‘Twig’ will debut next year

Young teases the new series about a fantastical journey.

Skottie Young and Kyle Strahm will debut a new comic at Image Comics next summer called Twig. A teaser for the comic appeared in the final issue of The Me You Love in the Dark, which came out earlier this month.

Young and Strahm will be joined by colorist Jean-Francois Beaulieu and letterer Nate Piekos, both of whom worked with Young and artist Jorge Corona on The Me You Love in the Dark. The teaser says the comic will be about “a fantastical journey of hope, heartache and the determination to overcome insurmountable odds.”

Here’s the teaser:

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Mail Call | New release dates for the Milestone revival

Catch up on news and announcements from Dark Horse, Vault Comics, DC, Z2 and more.

Mail Call is a roundup of the announcements we’ve received from comics publishers in our mailboxes recently that we haven’t already covered. Hit the links for more information.

DC Comics has modified their plans for the upcoming Milestone Media relaunch. The three launch titles — Static, Icon and Rocket, and Hardware — will no longer arrive digitally before they come out in print. Instead, they’ll be released in both formats on the same day, as well as on DC Universe Infinite. Both Static and Icon and Rocket will come out later, but Hardware will be published earlier than originally announced. The new dates (and creative teams for each title) are:

  • Static: Season One, written by Vita Ayala, with layouts by CHRISCROSS, finishes by Nikolas Draper-Ivey with covers by Khary Randolph launches in print and digital on June 15.
  • Icon and Rocket: Season One, co-written by Reggie Hudlin and Leon Chills, with art by Doug Braithwaite and covers by Taurin Clarke launches in print and digital on July 27.
  • Hardware: Season One, written by Brandon Thomas, with art by Denys Cowan and Bill Sienkiewicz with covers by Mateus Mahanini, launches in print and digital on August 10.
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DC launches ‘Let Them Live!’ on DC Universe Infinite

A lost Suicide Squad story written in 2011 surfaces on DC’s digital comics system.

When DC relaunched their DC Universe Infinite service last month, they promised exclusive content for subscribers. Today brought the first DCUI-exclusive comic, titled Let Them Live!: Unpublished Tales from the DC Vault, featuring a “lost” Suicide Squad story by Jim Zub, Tradd Moore, Felipe Sobreiro and Nate Piekos.

The story will be the first of several released by DC under this title, which seems like a way for them to clean out their files and share comics that were commissioned but never published. In fact, each issue will feature a framing sequence by Elliott Kalan, Mike Norton and Marissa Louise starring Ambush Bug — who has taken a job as a night janitor at the DC offices, where he finds the unreleased comics and provides commentary.

Future issues will include:

  • Let Them Live! #2 — a Nightwing story by Collin Kelly, Jackson Lanzing, Jorge Corona, Mat Lopes and Carlos M. Mangual — debuting Feb. 16 with a frame story by Elliott Kalan, Mike Norton and Marissa Louise. Let them Live! #3 — a Batman story by Scott Bryan Wilson, John Paul Leon, Dave Stewart and Deron Bennet — debuting 3/2 with a frame story by Elliott Kalan, Mike Norton and Marissa Louise.
  • Let them Live! #3 — a Batman story by Scott Bryan Wilson, John Paul Leon, Dave Stewart and Deron Bennet — debuting March 2 with a frame story by Elliott Kalan, Mike Norton and Marissa Louise.
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New ‘Beasts of Burden’ miniseries tells a story from the past

‘Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory’ heads to post-WW2 Japan in April.

The Eisner-winning Beasts of Burden returns in April with a new miniseries, Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory.

Writers Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer tell a story set in post-World War II, as a member of the Wise Dogs must deal with a curse that creates an army of crawling heads. They’re joined by artist Benjamin Dewey and letterer Nate Piekos, while series co-creator Jill Thompson will provide a variant cover for issue #4.

“I’m very excited to have a new Beasts of Burden story for the fans and I’m extremely happy with the way everything came together working with Sarah, Benjamin and Nate,” Dorkin said. “Why post-war Japan? I used to half-jokingly ask editor Daniel Chabon if we could have his Shiba Inu, Zell. He said we should have a Shiba in the series, instead. One thing led to another, one idea led to three more, and that’s where our latest story of dogs fighting supernatural evil ended up.”

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Ringo Awards winners announced

Annual awards ceremony recognizes ‘the creativity, skill and fun of comics.’

The winners for the 2020 Ringo Awards were announced today, marking the fourth year for the awards program named for artist Mike Wieringo, who passed away in 2007.

The awards were presented virtually as part of the Baltimore Comic Con‘s online programming, and started with an introduction and keynote from Kevin Smith and Geoff Johns. It was also live, which led to some logistical/technical issues as they tried to “cut over” to winners for their acceptance speeches.

Here are the winners, in the order they were presented during the ceremony. They include the “fan favorite” awards, which have a different process than the rest of the awards. You can find more details on the process here.

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Killjoys will make more noise this fall

‘The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys: National Anthem’ will arrive in October from Gerard Way, Shaun Simon, Leonardo Romero and Dark Horse Comics.

It’s been about seven years since Gerard Way, Shaun Simon and Becky Cloonan teamed up for The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, the comic book spinoff of the My Chemical Romance album of the same name. Well, look alive, sunshine: The Killjoys, just like My Chemical Romance, are returning, in the new miniseries The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys: National Anthem from Dark Horse Comics.

According to Alternative Press, Simon and Way will be joined by illustrator Leonardo Romero, colorist Jordie Bellaire, and letterer Nate Piekos for the new series. Cloonan will return, but only to do variant covers:

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Natural 20: ‘Stranger Things’ to cross over with ‘Dungeons & Dragons’

Jim Zub, Jody Houser, Diego Galindo, Michele Assarasakorn and Nate Piekos will descend into the depths of licensed comics.

Writer Jim Zub shares the news that he’s working with Jody Houser on Stranger Things and Dungeons & Dragons, a new four-issue mini-series being co-published by Dark Horse Comics and IDW, who have the respective comics licenses for the two properties.

They’ll be working with the art team of Diego Galindo, Michele Assarasakorn and Nate Piekos. The announcement was made during Wizards of the Coast’s D&D Live 2020 online event.

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Comics Lowdown: Standing behind retailers during the coronavirus

Plus: TCAF canceled, BookExpo postponed and more coronavirus news.

As the threat of the coronavirus continues to spread, and federal, state and local governments take action to try and stop it, “shelter in place” and social distancing orders inevitably harm small businesses, like comics retailers. Many retailers around the country have either closed up for a time or have moved to a mail order/”curbside pickup” system. In his weekly newsletter today, writer Cullen Bunn shared some tips for supprtoing your favorite shop during this time:

…SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL COMIC BOOK SHOP as much as you’re able. 

Running a comic book store can be difficult, even in the best of times. Right now, shops are taking a hit. The absolute last thing I want to see—as a reader, a fan, and a creator—is for comic book stores to disappear. It is vital that we all work together to support comic book stores as much as possible and help them get through the coming weeks. When comic book stores suffer, so does the comic book industry. A lot of stores are offering new services during this time of isolation and social-distancing. Some things you can do to help…

  • Inquiring about curbside pickup.
  • Inquiring about mail order or delivery options. 
  • Purchasing any books that are in your pull box.
  • Purchasing gift cards/gift certificates for upcoming birthdays, events, and holidays. 
  • Following your local comic shop on social media for updates on: curtailed hours of operation, events, special accommodations, and cleaning policy. 
  • Tagging your local comic shop on social media & posting photos of the comics you’ve purchased to read during self-quarantine and social distancing.

You can find a comic shop offering “safe services” during the pandemic by using this map from BOOM! Studios.

Image Comics, who issued a letter asking other publishers to help comics retailers during this crisis, also had Alex Cox, Skottie Young and Nate Piekos create a short comic on how fans can support their local shop:

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Séance gets his own ‘Umbrella Academy’ spinoff series

‘You Look Like Death!’ by Gerard Way, Shaun Simon, I.N.J. Culbard and Nate Piekos starts in June.

Dark Horse Comics has announced the first solo series for a member of the Umbrella Academy, the supernaturally charged Klaus Hargreeves, a.k.a. Séance.

The aptly titled You Look Like Death! will be written by co-creator Gerard Way with an assist from Shaun Simon, illustrated by I.N.J. Culbard and lettered by Nate Piekos.

“For a long time, I had wanted to tell the story of Klaus Hargreeves’ life after the Umbrella Academy disbanded and before the events of Apocalypse Suite,” Way said in a press release. “I imagined a pretty wild decade for Klaus– full of ups and downs, seedy places, supernatural excursions, and internal battles within himself. I am thrilled to finally be able to tell this story with my co-writer Shaun Simon, who sees the world of the UA as clearly as I do. Also thrilled to work with such an amazing art and lettering team in I.N.J. Culbard and Nate Piekos.

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Dark Horse announces a third ‘Stranger Things’ miniseries

Jody Houser returns to tell the story of a pyrokinetic named Nine.

Jody Houser will continue to tell stories set in the world of Netflix’s hit Stranger Things with Stranger Things: Into the Fire, coming from Dark Horse next year.

This time around, Houser will team with artist Ryan Kelly of Local and Saucer Country fame, along with inker Le Beau Underwood, colorist Triona Farrell and letterer Nate Piekos.

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Dark Horse digs up a ‘Stranger Things’ zombie tale

New OGN from Greg Pak and Valeria Favoccia due out next February.

With the third season of Stranger Things now available for binge-watching and the franchise showing no signs of slowing down, it makes sense that we’d hear about a new project from Dark Horse. Following the previous two miniseries, the publisher will release an original graphic novel next February set in the Stranger Things universe.

Writer Greg Pak will team with artist Valeria Favoccia, colorist Dan Jackson and letterer Nate Piekos for Stranger Things: Zombie Boys. It’ll be set after season one and will feature a new character, Joey Kim, who wants to make his own horror movie.

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‘The Mask’ returns at Dark Horse

Christopher Cantwell and Patric Reynolds team up for a new politically charged miniseries starring Big Head.

Christopher Cantwell and Patric Reynolds will bring Dark Horse’s The Mask back to comics this fall for a new miniseries, The Mask: I Pledge Allegiance to the Mask!

Cantwell is the co-creator and showrunner of the AMC drama Halt and Catch Fire, while Reynolds has worked on comics like Abe Sapien, Hellboy & the BPRD, Joe Golem, Aliens and Serenity.

“In a time when we’re constantly being bombarded from every corner by absurdity, amorality, public violence, pure chaos, apathy, and real moral darkness in the country, it felt like no better time than to bring the original punk underground spirit of The Mask back to confront where we are as a nation,” Cantwell said in a statement to Forbes. “The Mask has been gone for nearly 20 years, and now, the world is completely on f—ing fire. The world is ANGRY, HATEFUL, SPLITTING AT THE SEAMS. There is no truth anymore. There is only hysteria and a cacophony of disparate shouting voices. There is so much institutional crime on an ethical and moral scale that it washes over you in waves of misery that also sadly have the effect of dental novocaine. Worse, a lot of people seem to LOVE IT.”

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