Jodi Picoult Joins the BookCon Line Up

BookCon keeps adding more heavy hitters to its line up.Jodi Picoult Joins the BookCon Line Up

BookCon

Jacob Javits Center
655 West 34th Street in Midtown Manhattan, NYC.

Show Floor Hours

Saturday, May 31, 2014 – 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Panel Hours
Saturday, May 31, 2014 – 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Guest List

Purchase Tickets

Posted in Convention and Event Coverage | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Bee and Puppycat Comic From KaBoom! May 14th

RECORD-BREAKING WEB SERIES GETS KABOOM! COMIC WITH ‘BEE AND PUPPYCAT’ #1

Bee and Puppycat Comic From KaBoom! May 14thApril 15,  2014 - Los Angeles, CA - KaBOOM!, an imprint of award-winning publisher BOOM! Studios, is excited to announce the May debut of BEE AND PUPPYCAT #1 from fan-favorite creator Natasha Allegri (ADVENTURE TIME WITH FIONNA AND CAKE). After breaking the record for most funded web series on Kickstarter, this quirky take on the magical girl genre is coming to comics this May with co-writer Garrett Jackson and covers illustrated by Allegri, Zac Gorman (ADVENTURE TIME), Coleman Engle (BRAVEST WARRIORS), and Becky Dreistadt (ADVENTURE TIME).

“When Natasha and Frederator Studios put up the first ‘Bee and PuppyCat’ animated short last summer, we were instantly smitten, just like thousands of other fans,” said BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “Any opportunity to work with Natasha is a joy; ‘Bee and PuppyCat’ is a delightful (and hilarious!) series that readers of all ages can enjoy. And judging by the enormous fan response to the animated episodes, it’s sure to bring new readers to comics, which is one of our ongoing missions.”

WHY WE LOVE IT: Because Natasha Allegri is simply amazing. She built up a big fan-following on Tumblr while working on the Adventure Time cartoon, then created gender-swapped characters (Fionna and Cake) that became so popular they put them into the show. Then, she created BEE AND PUPPYCAT and it became the most funded web series project in Kickstarter history. How could we NOT publish it?

WHY YOU’LL LOVE IT: You might already love it if you’re one of the thousands who supported the Kickstarter campaign, but for those of you just joining us, if you like stories that feature magical girls like Sailor Moon, Madoka Magica, and Powerpuff Girls, you will enjoy BEE AND PUPPYCAT! It’s a slice-of-life story with a twist, and it has so much comedy and enchantment you can’t help but be swept up.

WHAT IT’S ABOUT: It’s a quirky new take on the magical girl genre with Bee, the forever unemployed main character who can’t seem to figure out life, and the mysterious PuppyCat, a stray…whatever it is…that she stumbled across who has a powerful secret. Fighting bad guys has never been so funny.

BEE AND PUPPYCAT #1 arrives in comic shops on May 14th with a cover price of $3.99 under Diamond order code MAR140984. Cover A by Natasha Allegri and Cover B by Zac Gorman will ship in a 50/50 intermix. Variant covers by Coleman Engle and Becky Dreistadt will be available in limited quantities. Not sure where to find your nearest comic retailer? Use comicshoplocator.com or findacomicshop.com to find one! It’s also available for order directly from boom-studios.com.

bee puppycat 2 bee puppycat 3 bee and puppycat 4

Posted in Comics, Press Release, Teaser | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Head Lopper # 1 – Gorgeous Sword & Sorcery Action!

Head Lopper # 1 - Gorgeous Sword & Sorcery Action!
In the world of comic fiction, Mankind’s history is often writ, not just in India ink, but also in blood. Blood, mostly spilled in the course of violence dispensed by dangerous men or women (whether for their own personal gain or in the protection and service of others). And to separate these, sometimes, noble savages from their more benign and laid back peers, comic creators attribute them namesakes that reflect their brutal nature. Writer Robert E. Howard, creator of “Conan the Barbarian”, understood this. And artist Frank Frazetta, creator of “Death Dealer” and “Berserker”, understood this as well. If any of these individuals were born with a proper birth name, say for example John, Lucy, William, or Dale, there seems an unspoken belief among creators that these aforementioned handles just wouldn’t cut it. And if there is one person who truly understands this axiom (more so than even Frazetta and Howard), than it is writer-artist Andrew MacLean… creator of “Head Lopper”.

Head Lopper is the story of sword-for-hire Norgal whose vocation in life is to go from town to town, decapitating the various threats that plague the citizens. Whether it be a sea serpent or witch, he does so with few words and walking a lonely path. The only company he’s had has been the living head of one of his victims (tucked in a sack), Agatha.

Although given the humor present in this issue and the choice of sword and sorcery as a genre, I wouldn’t compare this to writer-artist Sergio Aragone’s Groo the Wanderer. If anything, the first issue reminds me more of Mike Mignola’s Hellboy. The humor doesn’t dominate the book, and the character avoids being a one note premise (a smart decision by MacLean).

As for the artwork, no one needs to teach nor does Andrew MacLean need to learn anything further about conveying action in a panel. If our planet should ever run out of fossil fuels, MacLean’s line work should be considered an alternative energy source. I also loved the beginning sequence where a seagull is employed to introduce us to both setting and character in one cinematically inspired swoop. And, with a sharp use of both blacks and a sublime palette (by colorist Mike Spicer), this is easily one of the cleanest and most gorgeous books ever produced in recent memory.

In the past, I have to admit that my jaded outlook (in regards to what I see as an inundation of “big event book sensibilities” by the top comic companies) has gotten the better of me and my reviews have been affected by it. It is creative (and thankfully independent) forces like Andrew MacLean and Mike Spicer, that represent (especially to me) a real and substantial future for this art form.

Truly a pleasure to read and review. 5 out 5

First issue available online at: http://andrewmaclean.storenvy.com

Posted in Asbury Park Comic Con, Comics, Reviews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

What’s the Backstory? – The Winter Soldier

What's the Backstory - The Winter Soldier

So by now, you’ve probably seen the movie (if not, go right now! The internet will still be here when you get back!) and enjoyed the hell out of the titular antagonist in Captain America: Winter Soldier. If this is so, and you left the theater wondering: what the hell Bucky??? Then this is the place for you!

If you never read the Ed Brubaker/Steve Epting run that inspired Marvel’s latest cinema blockbuster and now you think Sebastian Stan is the man, and want to catch up on the all the great comics that made this movie possible, here is the chronological list of story arcs that either directly inspired the film or had key elements that were worked into the plot.

movies-captain-america-winter-soldier-concept-art
I implore you to read the whole Ed Brubaker- Captain America run, as all the arcs run together into one monumental story. But for the sake of your wallets and your sanity, I’m only listing arcs that are central to the film, and in trade paper-back form. There are plenty of giant unwieldy very expensive omnibuses that collect the arcs, but if you’re like me, and don’t have a $100 buck to spare, nor feeling like working out your forearms when your reading, this is the way to go:

CAWSVOL1Captain America: Winter Soldier  Vol 1
Reprints Cap #1-7
w. Brubaker
a. Epting

Key Concepts/Events:
- Death of a former partner leads Cap on the trail of a near-mythological assassin
- Establishes, through flashbacks, Bucky Barnes was more than just a teen sidekick, with scenes showing his intense training, and black ops missions he did, so Captain America’s reputation can stay untarnished.
- Return of an old foe, and rise of new deadlier one, with ties to Captain America’s WWII days
- Sharon Carter, Agent of SHIELD joins Captain America in investigation.

 

Captain America: Winter Soldier  Vol 2CAWSV2
Reprints Cap #8-9,11-14  (#10 was a House of M tie-in)

Key Concept/Events:
- Origin of the Winter Soldier
- Falcon joins the mission
- Nick Fury’s ties to the Winter Soldier revealed
- Cosmic Cube falls into the hands of Cap’s newest adversary
- Crossbones on the hunt for the daughter of the Red Skull

 

 

Civil WarCivil War Tpb
w. Mark Millar
a. Steve McNiven

Key Concepts/Events
- Superhuman Registration Act made law, Superheroes must reveal identities to the government
- Captain America refuses to support SHRA, made a fugitive and hunted by SHIELD
- SHIELD gains more autonomy over Superhumans and monitoring of civilians, mirroring the Post 9/11 Patriot Act
- Captain America leads resistance team of Secret Avengers, including Falcon, Luke Cage, & Iron Fist
- Superhero vs. Superhero as Iron Man, Mister Fantastic and other recruited pro registration heroes hunt down Captain America’s group and other non-registered super humans.
That above covers just about all the influences for the Captain America Winter Soldier, but with the Winter Soldier being such a breakout character, and the sheer awesomeness of the stories,  I’ve listed future trades for key arcs in his ongoing career.

winter-soldier

WARNING! Possible Spoilers for future Cap and Avengers movies!
(but with the Marvel Cinema Universe being different from its 616 Counterpart, I doubt these will really spoil anything!!! )

Civil War: Captain America TPB  CWCA
Reprints Cap# 22 – 24, Winter Soldier: Winter Kills 1-shot

Key Concepts/Events
- Captain America makes a fateful choice
- Agent 13, Sharon Carter must deal with the ramifications of the Civil War
- The Winter Soldier’s past haunts him as he deals with his new-found memories

 

 

 

DOCAvol1Death of Captain America: Vol 1 Death of The Dream
Reprints Cap #25-30
w. Ed Brubaker
a. Steve Epting & Mike Perkins

Key Concepts/Events
- Captain America assassinated!
- Long time villains, Doctor Faustus,Crossbones and Arnim Zola guess star, what do they have to do with Cap’s death
- The Red Skull has his final victory against Cap, but it is only the beginning of his plan
- Agent 13′ revelation about the assassination shatters her world

 

Captain America: Fallen Son TPBFallen
Reprints 1-Shots Fallen Son: Captain America, Spider-man, Iron Man, Wolverine, Avengers
w. Jeph Loeb
a. Lenil Francis Yu, Ed McGuiness, John Romita Jr., John Cassady & David Finch

Key Concepts/Events
- Wolverine starts his own investigation into Cap’s Death, with a little help from Daredevil and Doctor Strange.
- Stark has Cap’s SHIELD, and ponders a replacement
- The Young Avengers, New Avengers and even Osborn’s Dark Avengers deal with the political and social impact of Cap’s death
- Clint Barton (Hawkeye) confronts Tony Stark on his possible involvement in Cap’s death. Stark offers him the Shield.
- Spider-man reminisces about Cap, and his death takes a toll on the wall-crawler
- Captain America’s funeral and his final resting place revealed

DOCAV2Death Of Captain America: Vol 2 Burden of Dreams
Reprints Cap #31-36
w. Ed Brubaker
a. Steve Epting, Butch Guice & Mike Perkins

Key Concepts/Events
- The Red Skull’s plan in full effect
- Dr. Faustus’ control over Agent 13 reaches a new level
- A beaten and bloodied Winter Soldier confronts Tony Stark on the SHIELD heli-carrier
- Steve Roger’s will is read, and a new Captain America rises!

 

There are 5 more trades that cover the new Captain America’s run, by Ed Brubaker, if you just want to skip to the next event then:

Captain America RebornCARB
Captain America Reborn #1-6
w. Ed Brubaker
a. Bryan Hitch

KEY Concepts/Events
- Falcon, Agent 13, the Vision and Hank Pym investigate Doom’s role in Cap’s death
- The truth behind the weapon that killed Cap is revealed
- The Red Skull’s diabolical plan for a new body
- Steve Rogers reliving key moments in his life
- Cap battles for his very soul
- Guest starring: Black Widow,Winter soldier, Red Skull, Crossbones, Sin, & many, many more


CASRSSCaptain America: Steve Rogers: Super Soldier
Reprints CA:SR:Super Soldier #1-4
w. Ed Brubaker
a. Dale Eaglesham

Key Concepts/Events
- Steve Rogers Takes on his new role as a SHIELD Agent
- Secrets from his past return to haunt him, when someone re-discovers the original super soldier formula
- Steve tries to make repairs to the Superhero Community and establish trust within SHIELD
- Leads into Secret Avengers ongoing series


There are plenty of trade paperbacks on sale that cover the time of Bucky Barnes tenure as Captain America post CA:Reborn. They are worth checking out; like Fear Itself, the Marvel Event that led to Bucky’s end as Cap and Steve Rogers taking up the mantle once again.
Fear

 

Winter Soldier Vol 1 Longest WinterWS Vol1
Reprints Winter Soldier #1-5, Fear Itself 7.1 Captain America
w. Ed Brubaker
a. Butch Guice

Key Concepts/Events:
- Cap is dead- and the Winter Soldier is back
- Now working with Black Widow for SHIELD, their mission involves other Winter Soldiers, trained by Bucky himself.
- Guest stars Nick Fury, Doctor Doom and the Red Ghost
- High flying Super-spy action

 

wsvol2Winter Soldier Vol 2 Broken Arrow
Reprints Winter Soldier #6-9
w. Ed Brubaker
a. Michael Lark

Key Concepts/Events
- The final Sleeper Agent is active and on the run
- Agent Jasper Sitwell joins the hunt
- Black Widow and the Winter Soldier realize the final Sleeper is toying with them
- The Sleeper Agent make his move, and his plan hits close to home

Winter Soldier Vol3 Black Widow Huntwsvol3
Reprints Winter Soldier 10-14
w. Ed Brubaker
a. Butch Guice

Key Concept/Events
- Black Widow is kidnapped and brain-washed
- Winter Soldier enlist help in likes of Daredevil, Wolverine & Hawkeye in his hunt to find Natasha
- The Sleeper agent seems to always be one step ahead
- Bucky makes one final sacrifice to save the Widow’s mind.

 

Well that’s all folks, hope this helped you out some way! Want to pick up some (or all!) of the books mentioned? Get to your local comic shop! Don’t know where it is? Comic Shop Locator!

Stay tuned for: What’s the Backstory? – The Falcon!:

FalconOpen ultimate falcon

 

flaconposter

Posted in Comics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Preview Skinned #1 Monkeybrain Release 4/16!

And Skinned, which looks really cool. I’m looking forward to reading this one…

Preview Skinned #1 Monkeybrain Release 4/16!

Skinned_1-2Skinned #1
Writer: Tim Daniel, Jeremy Holt
Artist: Joshua Gowdy
Letterer: Matthew Meylikhov
Price: $0.99
Pages: 21
Rating: 15+
Iris is the perfect marriage of artificial intelligence and virtual reality, serving as the backbone for enhanced reality contact lenses that provide users with the perfect antidote to reality’s many maladies. From pop-culture inspired fantasies to manifestations of their personal imagining, they see the world precisely as they wish. To ensure societal tranquility, citizens of cView City are fitted with a pair of lenses at birth, but when Aldair–a teenage programming heiress–gets a glimpse of life with her own eyes, the world she once knew irrevocably changes forever.
Direct link to purchase: http://cmxl.gy/1qlB6XI

Skinned_1-3 Skinned_1-4 Skinned_1-5

Posted in Comics, Previews | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Preview D4VE #4 Monkeybrain Release 4/16!

I don’t have the foggiest idea about this one. I’ve only seen it in previews. I know the team on the book is talented. Have you been reading it? What do you think?

Preview D4VE #4 Monkeybrain Release 4/16!

D4VE_04-2
D4VE #4
Writer: RYan Ferrier
Artist: Valentin Ramon
Price: $0.99
Pages: 22
Rating: 17+
HELL ON 34RTH. The K’Laar invasion takes a violent turn and the robots begin to fall, causing D4VE to reveal his radical master plan. A plan that could change the robot world forever…if they aren’t wiped out first.
Direct link to purchase:

http://cmxl.gy/1qlB4iG

 

D4VE_04-3 D4VE_04-4 D4VE_04-5

Posted in Comics, Previews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Preview Copernicus Jones: Robot Detective #3 Monkeybrain Release 4-16!

Next up we have Copernicus Jones, Robot Detective! I’ve wanted to review this one for a while. I really enjoyed the first issue. Guess I need to catch up! Check out the previews! The link provided is live! (for pre-order)…

Preview Copernicus Jones: Robot Detective #3 Monkeybrain Release 4-16!
Copernicus_Jones_Robot_Detective_03-2Copernicus Jones: Robot Detective #3
Writer: Matt D. Wilson
Artist: Kevin Warren
Letterer: Dylan Todd
Price: $0.99
Pages: 18
Rating: 15+
Who is giving Copernicus the beating of his life in an alley behind a bar? And why is Copernicus just letting it happen? Just what has he got up his sleeve?
Direct link to purchase:

Copernicus_Jones_Robot_Detective_03-3 Copernicus_Jones_Robot_Detective_03-4 Copernicus_Jones_Robot_Detective_03-5

Posted in Comics, Previews | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Preview Bandette #7 Monkeybrain Release 4-16!

Monkeybrain has four titles on sale this Wednesday! First up Bandette! We reviewed Bandette back in December ( Check out the previews of the new issue! The link provided is live! (for pre-order)…

Preview Bandette #7 Monkeybrain Release 4-16!

Bandette_07-2Bandette #7
Writer: Paul Tobin
Artist: Colleen Coover
Price: $0.99
Pages: 21
Rating: 15+
The Urchins are warned of a deadly threat! Monsieur is trapped in the act of a daring burglary! Absinthe is enraged by a bold theft beneath his very nose! Bandette continues to pilfer the objects held most dear to Absinthe, all the while collecting evidence to be used against his corrupt organization, FINIS! Our beloved heroine scoffs at all laws in pursuit of her quest, but there is one law even she must obey… the law of gravity!
Direct link to purchase:

Bandette_07-3 Bandette_07-4 Bandette_07-5

Posted in Comics, Previews | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Valiant Exclusives & Programming for C2E2 2014!

VALIANT Announces VALIANT FIRST Exclusives and Programming for C2E2 2014 – With RAI, ARMOR HUNTERS, and More!
C2E2_Logo_Square_Lo_ResFrom April 25th-27th, Valiant will be unleashing a calvacade of VALIANT FIRST news and exclusives direct from C2E2 2014 – Chicago’s premier comics and pop culture convention!Join Valiant at Booth #317 for a weekend packed with signings from Valiant creators, including artist Clayton Henry (Harbinger, Archer & Armstrong), writer Justin Jordan (Shadowman, X-O Manowar #25), colorist Brian Reber (Unity, X-O Manowar), and more surprise guests! Plus, look for a ton of free giveaways and con-exclusive products, including the RAI #1 Graham Crackers Shared Exclusive Variant by fan favorite artist Kalman Andrasofszky (X-23)!
Limited to 750 copies, get the jump on the hotly anticipated debut title of the VALIANT FIRST publishing initiative with this exclusive, limited edition run of RAI #1 – the FIRST ISSUE of Valiant’s next ongoing series from superstar creators Matt Kindt (Unity, Mind MGMT) and Clayton Crain (Carnage, X-Force)! Arriving in comic shops everywhere on April 30th, discover the astonishing world of the 41st century with the all-new series unlike anything else in comics today! In the far future of 4001 A.D., Japan is a single endless city-state, governed by a benevolent artificial intelligence and policed by one lone enforcer – the mysterious Rai, spirit guardian of the rising sun. But, soon, a single bullet will shatter the peace it has taken 2,000 years to secure…
Valiant Exclusives & Programming for C2E2 2014!Then, join us on Sunday, April 27th at 2:30 PM in Room #S403 for the VALIANT FIRST: RAI, ARMOR HUNTERS, AND BEYOND panel presentation! The coming of VALIANT FIRST begins at C2E2 with an all-new round of news, announcements, artwork and Q&A about the most in-demand publishing company in comics today. What do you read FIRST? All summer long, Valiant will be rocketing to the top of your read pile with VALIANT FIRST – an all-new initiative unleashing a major #1 issue by some of the most talented creators in comics each month from May onward. With the earth-shaking events of ARMOR HUNTERS – Valiant’s colossal summer crossover event – just weeks away, get the inside track on what happens next for X-O MANOWAR, UNITY, BLOODSHOT, HARBINGER, and more from an all-star panel of Valiant creators and staff, including writer Joe Harris (Armor Hunters: Bloodshot), artist Clayton Henry (Harbinger, Archer & Armstrong), colorist Brian Reber (Unity, X-O Manowar), Executive Editor Warren Simons, and Chief Creative Officer Dinesh Shamdasani.
For more information, visit Valiant on Facebook, on Twitter, on Tumblr, and at ValiantUniverse.com.

For Valiant merchandise and more, visit ValiantStore.com.

For more information on C2E2, visit C2E2.com.

Posted in Comics, Convention and Event Coverage | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just Another Sheep – A Trippy 60′s Coming of Age Story, Plus SciFi!!

Just Another Sheep - A Trippy 60's Coming of Age Story, Plus SciFi!!Here’s the press release for a kickstarter you should definitely look at! (review follows)

Just Another Sheep, the sci-fi road trip set during the Summer of Love is running a Kickstarter campaign to help fund its last two issues.
San Francisco, CA (WEB) April 13, 2014 — Over the last year and a half the Just Another Sheep creative team comprised of writer Mat Heagerty (Wrinkled- 215ink), artists JD Faith (VIRGIL), colorist Paul Little (Morning Glories- Image Comics), colorist Jon Cairns (Alpha Flag), and letterer Ed Brisson (Sheltered- Image Comics) have been working towards the completion of the five issue miniseries.
The story follows a timid teen learning to think for himself in the tumultuous 1960′s. But it’s not simply the story of a soul search. The teen is on a quest to find out how he has the ability to make people experience anything his body has before– be that food poisoning, intoxication, pleasure, or pain.
The campaign went live Monday April 9th and has a goal set of $5,000 to help fund artists fees. To learn more about the comic, readers can visit the project’s pitch page here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/matheagerty/just-another-sheep-a-graphic-novel

So I read issues one and two of Just Another Sheep today (you can too! click here) and was pleasantly surprised to find a very cool story. Set in the war-torn 1967 with the anti-war movement in full swing. No big setup or introduction paragraph in the opening panels we’re just thrust right into the story. Accosted on a bus for appearing to be a “hippie” Banning (our main character) is roughed up and defends himself. With a gleam of his eyes and a few spoken words his attackers fall to the floor of the bus, one clutching his now broken arm, the other throwing up violently. Thrown off the bus, though the victim of the attack, Banning oddly takes the bus drivers anger without fighting back. Sitting at a bus stop wondering how he’s ever going to get to Boston now (we learn the reasons for the trip soon) he meets a girl. Sadie is a beautiful hippie chick, currently involved (with her friends) in a protest. Banning gets drawn into the protest and almost immediately joins the cause. Within those first pages we see Banning as a victim, though one who has the power to respond. And a follower, though with the abilities he’s shown surely he could lead?

As the issue unfolds we begin to see the larger picture but even with the exposition from other characters I’ll admit I wasn’t prepared for where this book went. A story that starts as a simple man-with-strange-powers trying to find his place becomes a political thriller with the turn of one page. I’ve only read the first two issues but I’m hooked. I really want to know what happens to Banning and what the mysterious people pulling the strings have in store for him, and the country!

The art is top-notch, the colors vibrant and trippy without being distracting, the page layouts and lettering range from simple to psychedelic without knocking you out of the story. Even the concept feels fresh. An empath whose power works to the limit of his own experience is definitely a new twist on a super-power and it looks like it could be an interesting one.

For concept, story, and execution I give Just Another Sheep a 3.5 out of 5! Whether you back the kickstarter or just go to the site check this one out. It’s a great read.

Posted in Comics, Comics, Kickstarter, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment