Mail Call | Shang-Chi’s mutant sister debuts in ‘Shang-Chi’ #3

Like fireworks lighting up the night sky comes a barrage of news, previews and announcements from Marvel, Dark Horse, Image, Mad Cave Studios 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.

Gene Luen Yang and Dike Ruan’s run on Marvel’s Shang-Chi has focused both on family and legacy, and in the third issue Marvel’s Master of Kung Fu finds out he has yet another sibling — and she’s a mutant.

Zhilan is a mutant warrior with a dazzling power: she can turn music into solidified energy. According to Marvel.com, she was exiled by Shang-Chi’s evil father years ago, and now Shang-Chi is seeking her out — as is the Krakoa mutant nation, which will lead to a confrontation with Wolverine.

Check out the variant cover by Michael Cho, along with some preview pages by Ruan, below:

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Can’t Wait for Comics | ‘Wonder Girl’ spins out of Future State into her own series

Also coming out this week: a new Fantastic Four miniseries, Megan Huang’s ‘Rangers of the Divide,’ the first-ever ‘Far Cry’ comic and more.

Welcome to Can’t Wait for Comics, your guide to what comics are arriving in comic book stores, bookstores and on digital this week. This week brings new comics and graphic novels from Marvel, DC, Top Cow, Dark Horse and more.

Check out a few highlights below, or visit Diamond’s website for this week’s almost complete list of new comics arriving in stores — you can visit Lunar Distribution’s home page to see DC’s release — and the comiXology new releases page for what’s available digitally.

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Mail Call | ‘That Texas Blood’ returns with a new story arc in June

Today’s round-up includes announcements and previews from Marvel, DC, Skybound, Image, Dark Horse 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.

That Texas Blood, the excellent small-town noir series by Chris Condon and Jacob Phillips, returns next month from Image Comics with a new story arc that delves into Ambrose County’s past, “blowing off some of that desert dust and seeing what lurks beneath,” Phillips said.

That Texas Blood #7 will arrive in comic shops on June 30.

“Returning to Ambrose County and these characters is like going home in many ways. They feel like old friends more than old creations and none more so than Sheriff Joe Bob Coates. I’m beyond excited to explore a bit of Joe’s past in this next story arc as we travel back in time to 1981. We’ll see new places, meet new people, and explore ideas we haven’t before. I’ve always believed that the beginning years of any decade are the hangover of the previous one, and I am absolutely thrilled that we are allowed to dissect this over the next six issues with our merry band of Ambrose Countians,” said Condon. “But don’t be fooled, we aren’t viewing the past through rose-colored glasses. I’ve said before that Texas is America’s mystical land, but every fantasy world has a minotaur lurking in the dark or a dragon breathing through smoking nostrils over armor-clad corpses. Our Texas is no different. The shadows there stretch to the horizon, devouring all light. But there are some who see the darkness and strike a match to light the way. I hope that you’ll join us on our trip down Highway 90, into the heart of Ambrose County and into the dark depths of the past. But don’t you fret, we’re not out of matches yet.”

Check out the first issue’s covers:

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Comics Lowdown | Zunar is in trouble again

Plus: A new graphic novel looks at Japanese Americans who resisted internment.

Zunar’s cartoon critiquing the minster of the state of Kedah, who canceled the festival of Thaipusam. The cleaver says “No Thaipusam” and the caption on the right reads “Kedah’s inhabitants lived in peace until he came.”

The Malaysian political cartoonist Zunar is in trouble with the law again. Police in the state of Kedah have summoned him to appear before them on May 7 (the original date, given in the linked article, was May 2 but it was rescheduled) for violating the country’s sedition law, a much-criticized relic of its colonial past, with a cartoon criticizing the Kedah state minister’s decision to cancel the traditional Tamil Hindu festival of Thaipusam.

Zunar got into lots of trouble during the tenure of Prime Minister Najib Razak, whom he mocked endlessly for his corruption; Razak was not amused and his government repeatedly raided Zunar’s studio, confiscated his books, banned him from traveling, and brought charges against him that could have led to lengthy prison sentences. The pressure eased once Najib was voted out.

Ironically, Zunar’s latest skirmish coincides with World Press Freedom Day, which was Monday; several national and international groups have criticized the Malaysian government for its repressive stance.

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‘Shang-Chi’ ongoing series debuts in May from Yang + Ruan

The new series will pit the new leader of the Five Weapons Society against other Marvel heroes.

Gene Luen Yang and Dike Ruan, whose Shang-Chi miniseries recently wrapped up, will continue to tell stories about the Master of Kung Fu. Marvel has announced the two creators will helm a Shang-Chi ongoing series, which starts in May.

Now the leader of the Five Weapons Society — the evil organization once run by his dad — Shang-Chi’s new status quo will put him on a collision course with some of Marvel’s other heroes, including his form Avengers teammates.

“I’m very, very thankful for all the support that we got for the Shang-Chi miniseries. I mean, the first two issues sold out,” Yang told Marvel.com. “I’m thrilled that we get to continue the story of Shang-Chi and his siblings in the Five Weapons Society. We’re going to show how Shang-Chi’s brand-new role affects the rest of the Marvel Universe. We’ll have him interact with old friends and new foes… and even old friends who become new foes. Dike Ruan and I are already hard at work. The stuff I’ve seen from Dike so far has been his best yet.”

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Can’t Wait for Comics | New eras for ‘Firefly,’ ‘Monstress’ and more

New comics arrive this week from John Ridley, Giuseppi Camumcoli, Steve Wands, Mark Russell, Steve Pugh, Gene Yang, Greg Pak, Pius Bak, Dustin Weaver, Marjorie Liu, Sana Takeda and more.

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

This week brings another wave of DC’s Future State, as well as the second issue of The Other History of the DC Universe. New story arcs for Firefly and Monstress debut, while Marvel wraps up Shang-Chi.

You know the drill — check out a few recommendations below, or visit ComicList for this week’s full list of new comics arriving in stores, and the comiXology new releases page for what’s available digitally.

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Forward into the Past: Marvel solicitations for April 2021

Carla Hoffman dives deep into what to expect from Marvel in April.

Let’s take a moment, Dear Reader, to look forward to the future.  I know, it’s been a while since we’ve indulged in this sort of thing, the idea that the next few months could be predictable enough to make plans accordingly, rather than surviving by the seat of our pants.  But just in case the aliens don’t land, wild boars don’t mutate and dominate the East Coast, or that the comics publishing business won’t go belly up in a matter of weeks and lock down all new content from our humble shelves, let’s look forward into the past at the solicitations of April 2021 from Marvel Comics.

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What Are You Reading? | Terminal Punks, Fantastic Four and Allie Brosh

See what the Smash Pages crew has been reading lately.

Welcome to What Are You Reading?, our weekly look at what the Smash Pages crew has been reading lately — including comics from the past, present and future.

Let us know what you read this week in the comments or on social media.

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Can’t Wait for Comics | ‘Three Jokers, ‘Department of Truth’ and more

Check out new comics this week from Geoff Johns, Jason Fabok, James Tynion IV, Martin Simmonds, Gene Yang, Jody Houser, Dike Ruan, Dan Slott, Paco Medina and more.

We are back with a look at what’s arriving in comic shops, bookstores and on digital this week.

If you’re wondering what to get this week, check out a few recommendations below. You can check out Comic List to see what’s arriving in your local comic shop, and the comiXology new releases page for what’s available digitally.

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Mail Call | Dark Horse to bring several comiXology Originals titles to print

A round-up of news from DC, Marvel, Titan Comics, IDW and more.

Mail Call is a roundup of the announcements we’ve received from comics publishers in our mailboxes recently. Hit the links for more information.

ComiXology announced this week that they’ve struck a deal with Dark Horse to bring several of their comiXology Originals digital titles to print, starting with four titles next spring: Afterlift, Breaklands, Youth and The Black Ghost.

“We were always hopeful comiXology Originals books would get into readers’ hands via comics retailers and book stores, and Dark Horse is a terrific collaborator to work with to do so, with an unmatched history of supporting creator-owned projects alongside unmatched distribution expertise. This deal fortifies the ability for these stories to reach customers like never before,” said David Steinberger, comiXology co-founder and CEO. “We’re thrilled to be working with Dark Horse.”

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Yang + Ruan + Tan team for ‘Shang-Chi’ in June

The miniseries will feature Shang-Chi going up against his super villain father, Zheng Zhu.

Marvel has announced a new miniseries starring martial arts master, former Avenger and current Agents of Atlas member Shang-Chi, by the team of Gene Luen Yang, Dike Ruan and Phillip Tan.

“I mean, it’s Shang-Chi,” Yang told the New York Times. “He’s probably the most prominent Asian — I guess he’s Asian-American now since he’s moved over here — Asian-American superhero.”

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