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Latest Comic News Announcements From Fantagraphics, Dark Horse, Image, Archie, & More!

Here’s the scoop on several exciting releases announced by various publishers that will be released over the next several months.

Fantagraphics Books To Publish SEE YOU AT SAN DIEGO: AN ORAL
HISTORY OF COMIC-CON, FANDOM, AND THE TRIUMPH OF GEEK CULTURE

This fall Fantagraphics will publish SEE YOU AT SAN DIEGO: AN ORAL HISTORY OF COMIC-CON, FANDOM, AND THE TRIUMPH OF GEEK CULTURE, a comprehensive chronicle of the rise of fandom and pop culture nostalgia throughout the past century. Over the course of 480 pages, author and pop culture historian Mathew Klickstein presents the rise of both Comic-Con and modern geekdom itself, with behind-the-scenes observations from the likes of Ho Che Anderson, Sergio Aragonés, Scott Aukerman, Bruce Campbell, Felicia Day, Kevin Eastman, Mark Evanier, Neil Gaiman, Lloyd Kaufman, Frank Miller, the Russo Brothers, Stan Sakai, Scott Shaw!, Kevin Smith, Brinke Stevens, Trina Robbins, Tim Seeley, Maggie Thompson, and more. The book also includes forewords by Usagi Yojimbo creator Stan Sakai and Bone’s Jeff Smith, as well as an afterword by the Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA.

“Fandom is a tribe of people,” said Klickstein. “Geeks, nerds, fanboys/fangirls, misfits, outsiders, weirdos — all bonding over pop culture nostalgia. People who speak a shorthand based on the singular universe built around certain niche passions. It’s more than a subculture, but rather an entire network of interconnected and often overlapping nodes of fandom. The Marx Bros, Ray Bradbury, Flash Gordon, Bride of Frankenstein, Bruce Lee, Sailor Moon, all melding together and burbling a certain effervescent energy. I wanted to help organize and tell the story of how this all came together over the last century, focusing on the thrust of the before-during-and after the creation and expansion of Comic-Con over the past five decades in particular. These are my forebears, my people, and I think we together are telling the story of the progenitors of modern fan culture today. And at less than $50. What a steal.”

From THE TWILIGHT ZONE to Ray Bradbury to STAR TREK to FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND to STAR WARS to Bruce Lee flicks to TWILIGHT, SEE YOU AT SAN DIEGO: AN ORAL HISTORY OF COMIC-CON, FANDOM, AND THE TRIUMPH OF GEEK CULTURE explores how fandom has transformed popular culture. Featuring more than 400 photos and art bursts, the book is an essential and defining resource of the forces that have transformed popular culture over the course of the past century.

“Having attended Comic-Con from the early ‘70s to the present, I’ve literally experienced it grow from a small, intimate con to the frenetic, hyper commercial mass media extravaganza it is today,” said Fantagraphics publisher Gary Groth. “ I can say with some authority that Klickstein’s oral history captures evolution of the convention itself and the concomitant devolution of American culture — a sociological spectacle told with verve and humor by the participants.”

See You At San Diego: An Oral History of Comic-Con, Fandom, and the Triumph of Geek Culture will be in stores on September 6, 2022. For more info, follow Fantagraphics on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.

MULTIPLE EISNER AWARD WINNING BITTER ROOT GETS OMNIBUS HARDCOVER EDITION FOR FEBRUARY 2023

The multiple Eisner Award winning series Bitter Root by all-star creative trio Chuck Brown, David F. Walker, and Sanford Greene will get the omnibus hardcover edition treatment. The Bitter Root Omnibus hardcover will collect the first 15 issues of the series along with the Bitter Root: Red Summer Special one-shot and will be available in February 2023 from Image Comics.

The Bitter Root series follows the Sangerye family who, for generations, has fought to protect the world from the evil plague of the jinoo—hideous creatures born out of hate and racism. But now, the family must face an even greater evil that has arisen to destroy humanity and threatens to rip the family apart.

Bitter Root Omnibus hardcover (ISBN: 978-1-5343-2467-1, Diamond Code SEP220144) will be available on Wednesday, February 22, 2023 and in bookstores on Tuesday, February 28.

EISNER AWARD NOMINATED KILLADELPHIA GETS
DELUXE HARDCOVER EDITION THIS NOVEMBER

The Eisner Award nominated horror title Killadelphia by Rodney Barnes (writer behind Marvel’s Runaways, STARZ’s American Gods, HBO’s Winning Time) and artist Jason Shawn Alexander (Spawn) will get the hardcover treatment. Killadelphia Deluxe Hardcover Book One will hit shelves this November from Image Comics and will collect the first 12 issues of the popular series, plus all five chapters of the terrifying werewolf tie-in story Elysium Gardens.

The Killadelphia series follows a small-town beat cop who returns home to bury his murdered father, revered Philadelphia detective James Sangster Sr. What he doesn’t anticipate is digging up a mystery that will lead him down a path of horrors and shake his beliefs to their core. The city that was once the symbol of liberty and freedom has fallen prey to corruption, poverty, unemployment, brutality… and vampires. Now, it’s up to Jimmy and an unexpected companion to stop long-thought-dead president of the United States John Adams from building an undead army and staging a bloody new American revolution.

Killadelphia Deluxe Hardcover Book One (ISBN: 978-1534323490, Diamond Code JUL220106) will be available on Wednesday, November 16 and in bookstores on Tuesday, November 22.

DARK HORSE BOOKS PRESENTS: RESIDENT ALIEN OMNIBUS VOLUME 2

Dark Horse Books returns to the small town of Patience, Washington in the Resident Alien Omnibus Volume 2. Written by Peter Hogan (2000 AD, Tom Strong) with art, colors and lettering by Steve Parkhouse (War Birds, Milkman Murders), this omnibus collects the Resident Alien graphic novels Volumes 4 through 6: The Man with No Name, An Alien in New York, and Your Ride’s Here, along with the Free Comic Book Day 2022 short story “The Ghost.” The beloved comics are the inspiration for the hit SYFY series Resident Alien, starring Alan Tudyk as Harry Vanderspeigle.

A stranded alien explorer—hiding in plain sight—has been posing as a doctor and solving crimes in the small town of Patience, Washington. After Harry accidentally reveals himself to investigators who are on his trail, a mysterious arsonist and a stubborn federal agent arrive in town to heat things up! The local sheriff must decide if he’ll remain loyal to his inquisitive friend Harry, and nurse Asta finally realizes the danger she and Harry are both in.

The Resident Alien Omnibus Volume 2 trade paperback will be in bookstores May 16, 2023 and comic book shops May 17, 2023.

Bestselling Cartoonist Matt Kindt and Acclaimed Colorist Sharlene Kindt
to Publish SPY SUPERB with Flux House and Dark Horse Comics

Who is the perfect spy? That question may be best answered by bestselling cartoonist Matt Kindt, who has been writing and illustrating espionage and action-fueled comics like BRZRKR (with Keanu Reeves), Apache Delivery Service, BANG! Dept. H, Ether, Fear Case, MIND MGMT, Folklords, Revolver, 3 Story, Super Spy, and Pistolwhip for the last two decades. Next January, Kindt and the acclaimed colorist Sharlene Kindt (Dept H) will release SPY SUPERB their latest collaboration, an offbeat mystery-thriller about a secret organization that has developed the perfect spy. And just who is that perfect spy? Someone who doesn’t even realize they are a spy. 

In SPY SUPERB, a secret organization identifies the ultimate asset: a man named Jay, who is what they call a “useful idiot.”  Jay is sent on missions without even realizing he’s on a mission. Until he picks up the wrong phone with the wrong secret intel and now Russian hit-squads and elite assassins are after him. But Jay believes he was a sleeper agent—and really is the “spy superb”. His complete obliviousness and lack of survival skills may be the only thing that saves him in this globe-trotting espionage tale …where nothing is what it seems…but also…kind of actually is what it seems.

“In Spy Superb I wanted to explore a character, the idea of a very average person who is under the belief that he is utterly exceptional,” said Kindt. “There is a scientific term for this–The Dunning-Kruger effect–a person who insists they possess knowledge and skills that they obviously do not. What if a super spy was suffering from this? Well…they would of course be a…SPY SUPERB. It was actually really hard for me to keep this character alive past issue #1… there are hit men after him…a super assassin who kills only with rock, paper, and scissors… and a real super spy working in the shadows of our “hero” who may actually be the real spy superb. It feels really great to be drawing a new book–and I’m beyond happy that Sharlene Kindt (Dept. H) is painting it. It’s definitely the most ambitious collaboration we’ve ever had.”

The announcement of SPY SUPERB follows the news that three of Kindt’s acclaimed comics are currently in active development under the Dark Horse Entertainment banner:

  • Based on the comic series by Matt Kindt and Wilfredo Torres, the feature film adaptation of the stylish spy thriller Bang! is set to star Idris Elba (The Harder They Fall, Concrete Cowboy, Luther) and be directed by David Leitch (Bullet Train, Atomic Blonde, Deadpool 2). The script will be written by Kindt and Zak Olkewicz (Bullet Train, Fear Street Part 2: 1978). The film will be produced by Mike Richardson and Keith Goldberg for Dark Horse, David Leitch and Kelly McCormick for 87 North, and Idris Elba. In Bang!, when a terrorist cult sets out to start the apocalypse with a series of novels meant to brainwash their readers, the world’s most celebrated spy is sent to track down and kill the author responsible.
  • Based on Kindt’s acclaimed Mind MGMT series, Curtis Gwinn (Stranger Things) is set to Executive Produce this series adaptation. The film will be produced by Mike Richardson and Keith Goldberg for Dark Horse, along with Gwinn. In Mind MGMT, a young woman stumbles onto the top-secret Mind Management program. Her ensuing journey involves weaponized psychics, hypnotic advertising, talking dolphins, and seemingly immortal pursuers, as she attempts to find the man who was MIND MGMT’s greatest success – and its most devastating failure. But in a world where people can rewrite reality itself, can she trust anything she sees?
  • Director Alice Waddington (Paradise Hills) is set to direct Netflix’s adaptation of Dept. H, which is based on the popular comic book series by Matt and Sharlene Kindt. Writer T.S. Nowlin (The Maze Runner) will adapt the script. Mike Richardson, Keith Goldberg and Paul Schwake of Dark Horse Entertainment will produce.

“If you close your eyes and imagine John Wick being dropped into a Wes Anderson film, you’ll have a sense of the world of SPY SUPERB, “said Dark Horse Publisher Mike Richardson. “It’s unconventional, unusual and the kind of smart action comic book you expect from Matt Kindt.”

GOLDEN AGE HERO BOB PHANTOM RETURNS
IN A SHADOWY NOIR REBOOT!

Archie Comics is bringing the classic superhero BOB PHANTOM out of the Golden Age vault and into the modern era in an all-new one-shot comic book hitting stores in November! Writer James III (Netflix’s Astronomy Club) and artist Richard Ortiz (THE FOX) set their mind-bending noir-tinged adventure in the shadowy alleyways of New York City’s theater district, with a hero who may be the story’s villain, as well.

“[James] is the exact type of person you want on a project like this,” said Archie Comics Senior Director of Editorial Jamie L. Rotante. “He’s dusting off Bob Phantom’s cobwebs and giving him a second chance to be a main event player.”

Bob Phantom was one of Archie’s earliest superhero characters, introduced in 1939’s BLUE RIBBON COMICS #2 in a story drawn by comics legend Irv Novick. Boasting a multitude of superpowers and talents, he fought crime by night and worked as theater critic and gossip columnist Walt Whitney by day, often antagonizing police. In the new version, James III explores the possibility that Walt’s anti-authoritarian streak may run deeper than the surface as he creates news in order to report it.

James said, “With BOB PHANTOM, I wanted to explore what it means to write news today when everyone gets their news from the headlines on their Twitter feed without reading the articles, and you can’t tell what’s legitimate and what’s fake. (To use loaded terminology.) This might make you question your validity as a journalist and your worth as a person in society. I was heavily inspired by crime stories with news elements like Road to Perdition and Nightcrawler. What brings a person to snap pictures first and provide assistance later or not at all?”

Bob Phantom’s fanciful powers may also be too fanciful to be true, as the new story takes a surreal turn into Walt’s dreams. Jamie added, “We’ll see glimpses of the cold realities of the real world alongside dreamscapes of the imagination. The juxtaposition of the two takes this from a standard superhero story to something that deftly blends surrealism with noir. There’s a lot going on in this story, and a lot that can be carried over into more in the future!”

BOB PHANTOM releases November 16 in comic shops nationwide and is available for pre-order now.

MULTIPLE EISNER AWARD WINNERS BRUBAKER & PHILLIPS
STRIKE AGAIN WITH ALL-NEW RECKLESS OGN
FOLLOW ME DOWN THIS OCTOBER

Crime noir masters Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (Pulp, Criminal, The Fade Out, and Kill Or Be Killed) are back with yet another original graphic novel starring troublemaker-for-hire Ethan Reckless in the forthcoming Follow Me Down. This new standalone thriller is the fifth book in the Reckless series in less than two years, an unprecedented achievement in the American comics field. The book will hit shelves from Image Comics this October.

“The Reckless books have not just been a runaway hit, they’ve also been a joy for me and Sean to work on—our great escape has been trying to bring some escapism and pulp thrills to our readers in these strange times. This time out, after letting Anna take the lead in the previous book, Ethan is back in charge, and… well, the book is called Follow Me Down so you can guess that things aren’t exactly coming up roses for him,” said Brubaker. “But there are some big surprises in store here, that will punch our longtime readers in the guts a bit, I hope.”

In the wake of the 1989 earthquake, Ethan takes a trip to San Francisco to search for a missing woman. But almost immediately, he finds himself going down a path of darkness and murder in a case unlike anything he’s faced before.

Follow Me Down is the most intense of the Reckless books so far and a must-have for all Brubaker and Phillips fans!

Follow Me Down (ISBN: 978-1534323421, Diamond Code JUL220075) will be available on Wednesday, October 12 and in bookstores on Tuesday, October 18.

Legendary Hellboy Creator Mike Mignola, Acclaimed Artist Ben Stenbeck,
and Award-Winning Colorist Dave Stewart Present KOSCHEI IN HELL

Legendary Hellboy creator Mike Mignola is returning to Hell, along with acclaimed artist Ben Stenbeck and award-winning colorist Dave Stewart, for KOSHCHEI IN HELL, an all-new four-issue miniseries from Dark Horse Comics. Sent to kill Hellboy by the Baba Yaga in Hellboy: Darkness Calls, Koshchei the Deathless hinted at a long and tragic life before being enslaved to the Slavic witch. Now, in this new series, Koshchei is still in Hell content with his wine and his books—until an old associate arrives and brings Koshchei a critical task. An ancient and powerful foe is returning, and Koshchei must take up his sword to defend Pandemonium from destruction.

“It’s always a pleasure working with Ben, as he can really do everything,” said Mignola. “And there’s just something about how he does things—something very natural and almost quiet—subtle—til it’s time to NOT be subtle. It just really works with the kind of stories I’m trying to tell. And Koshchei—I just love this guy. I’ve really put him through the wringer, but he keeps on going. And Hell—well, is it odd to say I love that place?”

“Koshchei would love to just sit back and read books and drink wine in his socks,” said Stenbeck. “That’s the series Koshchei wants this to be. But that’s not what he’s getting. He has to leave the house. Then he’s going to run into a lot of familiar faces and meet some new ones, and they are pretty much all asking for a fight. Poor old Koshchei, it’s never easy.”

In November Mignola, Stenbeck, and Stewert return to Hell, and to the bizarre folklore that’s filled some of the greatest books of the Hellboy Universe. The debut issue of KOSHCHEI IN HELL is on sale on November 30, 2022.

Z2 Comics & Jamie Hewlett Resurrect the Gorillaz Co-Founder’s
Anarchic Comic in New Art Book, PHOO ACTION: SILVER JUBILEE

Following the releases of The Gorillaz Almanac and The Gorillaz Art Book, Z2 Comics is proud to once more collaborate with artist and design luminary Jamie Hewlett with PHOO ACTION: SILVER JUBILEE, a new oversized art book featuring the comic and show that serve as the kinetic missing link between Tank Girl and Gorillaz.

Written and curated by PHOO ACTION co-author Mat Wakeham and featuring original designs by Hewlett, the book will present the full trajectory of what would become the cult sensation—from the Get the Freebies comic strip first presented in UK magazine The Face from 1996 to 1997, to the 2008 PHOO ACTION BBC pilot and beyond.

Meticulously assembled by Wakeham with forewords that serve as an oral history of the evolving project, PHOO ACTION: SILVER JUBILEE shows the origins of Whitey Action, a cynical teen and potty-mouthed heroine, alongside Terry Phoo, a hapless kung-fu super cop. Born from counter-culture superhero chic and hyperactive pre-millennial angloism, the comic features the pair waging a two-person war against the mutant Freebies gang—led by an outlandish, hysterical crime boss with a basketball for a head.

“To say that I hold dear these characters and this property is an understatement. I am so extremely grateful to be their current custodian and curator—and that I still get to be a creative collaborator in their world, too,” Wakeham says. “This book is my open love letter to some of the funniest, most reprehensible, and inspired underground comics of the late 20th century, from the hand of one of Britain’s leading cultural luminaries—Mr. Jamie Hewlett.”

For the first time, this book will collect the entirety of the 12-part Get the Freebies comic in English, alongside a cover piece from Hewlett—the first new official comic art of Terry and Whitey to celebrate their 25th anniversary. PHOO ACTION: SILVER JUBILEE will also include a never-before-seen introductory comic to a planned second season that was never produced, with a prose novel from Wakeham detailing the rest of the chapters. The novel will feature original illustrations from iconic comic artist Philip Bond (The Invisibles, Kill Your Boyfriend). A treasure trove of unseen development and character artwork from Hewlett presents a definitive and exhaustive timeline of this underground masterpiece.

Z2 Comics, Jamie Hewlett, and Mat Wakeham present PHOO ACTION: SILVER JUBILEE in standard hardcover and deluxe hardcover with a clamshell cover. The deluxe hardcover will come with enamel pins, magnets, and embroidered patches. PHOO ACTION: SILVER JUBILEE will release in early Winter.

DRINK IN THE MAGIC OF ELIXIR

Dark Horse Books and creators Frank J. Barbiere (Five Ghosts, Violent Love), Ricky Mammone (Second Chances), and Victor Santos (Polar, Against Hope) introduce you to a brand-new sci-fi/fantasy world. Elixir is a dark fantasy tale where the magic of the past clashes with the technology of the future.

In a fantastic vision of the future, magic has been replaced with technology. Two factions are in conflict within a sprawling metropolis: The Druids hold on to the past, while huge corporations exploit new technologies that threaten to eradicate magic forever. Mara, the daughter of a druid leader, becomes caught up in a dangerous mission to recover the elixir—a mysterious artifact that could restore magic and defeat the corporations once and for all. The only problem? It’s in the hands of her old mentor, a dangerous warrior who has mastered magic and the blade, and who’s driven by a personal vendetta to destroy the elixir at all costs. Caught between her family and a choice that could shape the future forever, how far will Mara go to recover the elixir for herself, and what will she do with it?

Elixir mixes elements of magic and design from Final Fantasy with the artistic grit of Sin City to deliver an original sci-fi/fantasy adventure with explosive action, sleek style, and unforgettable characters.

“I began my career in Europe doing fantasy comics but basically I am known in the USA as a noir-crime author,” says artist Victor Santos. “Thanks to this new collaboration with my partner Frank Barbiere and with the addition of the talented writer Ricky Mammone, I have had the chance to build a world with all the elements and aesthetics I loved reading as a teen but with my experience as a creator and a more modern point of view of what a good fantasy story should be.”

“Comics have always been about meaningful collaboration, and I’m thrilled to be working with Victor Santos again,” Frank Barbiere says. “Victor is one of the most innovative, eye-catching storytellers in the business and I can’t wait to share all the astonishing work he’s done bringing the world of Elixir to life. Along with Victor, co-writer Ricky Mammone is one of the most exciting new voices in comics and it’s been a joy to create these characters and tell this story with him. I’ve always wanted to tell an original fantasy story, and Elixir is a combination of many of our shared loves.”

“So excited to be working with Frank and Victor bringing this fantastical, yet very grounded and human, story to life,” co-writer Ricky Mammone says. “And with everything going on with the environmental crisis nowadays, we feel it’s more pertinent than ever.”

The Elixir trade paperback will arrive in comic shops and bookstores March 29th, 2023.

 

 

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