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Dynamite Entertainment NYCC Plans

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DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT PROUDLY ANNOUNCES
NEW YORK COMIC-CON PANEL, CONVENTION EXCLUSIVE
COMIC BOOKS, AND BOOTH GUESTS

 

Dynamite Entertainment is pleased to announce their participation in next week’s New York Comic-Con, taking place from October 8th through 11th at the Jacob Javits Convention Center. Dynamite, a leading publisher of comic books and graphic novels, will host a booth, welcome creator guests for signings, highlight their current and upcoming projects in a Thursday morning panel, offer seven exclusive New York Comic-Con comic books, and offer retro Vampirella t-shirts (only available at conventions) to attending fans. The Dynamite booth number is #2129.

Grumpy Cat, the “World’s Grumpiest Cat” and lovable internet phenomenon, will be available for photo opportunities at the Dynamite booth on Thursday from 1:30pm to 3:00pm. Artist Ken Haeser, whose artwork graces the Grumpy Cat comics (as well as the Living Corpse comic series and numerous Dynamite variant covers), will sign at the Dynamite booth and accept commission requests throughout the day on Saturday. Additional creator guests will appear at the booth; fans are encouraged to follow Dynamite’s social media for the latest updates and signing times.

Dynamite will host one panels at New York Comic-Con. The date, time, and focus of the panel is as follows:

Dynamite Entertainment: The Next Ten Years
Thursday, October 8th, 11:00am – 12:00pm

Join the Dynamite gang and their star-studded line-up of creative talent for an hour of explosive power! Learn all the juicy details behind their thrilling new James Bond comic book series, written by superstar Warren Ellis. Discover what Dynamite has in store for Frankenstein, Grumpy Cat,Pathfinder, Vampirella, Doc Savage, and much more. The editors and creators at Dynamite will happily share their latest news and insider perspectives, plus answer all your burning questions! Featuring rising superstar writers Marguerite Bennett and Frank J. Barbiere, revealing for the first time ever their insight into Dynamite’s top secret 2016 launches!

Comic book fans will be excited to know that special New York Comic-Con exclusive variants of Dynamite’s most highly anticipated comic books will be available at the Dynamite show booth.

• Alice Cooper vs. Chaos! #1 – Photo Edition (Cover F)

• Aliens / Vampirella #1 – Javier García-Miranda “Vampirella Design Concepts” Edition (Cover H)

• Bob’s Burgers Ongoing #2 – Brittany McCarthy “Virgin Art” Edition (Cover D)

• Bob’s Burgers Ongoing #4 – Hans Ranum Edition (Cover E)

• Grumpy Cat #1 – Ken Haeser, Buz Hasson, Blair Smith Edition (Cover L)

• Red Sonja / Conan #1 – Ed Benes “Blood Red” Edition (Cover P)

Voltron: From the Ashes #1 – Alex Milne “Black & White” Edition (Cover B)

Read More about Dynamite Entertainment NYCC Plans

Dynamite Entertainment New York Comic-Con 2014 Schedule

Press Release

DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT HEADS TO 2014 NEW YORK COMIC-CON;

CELEBRATES 10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY AT BOOTH #2022

WITH CREATOR SIGNINGS AND CONVENTION EXCLUSIVES 

 

October 7, 2014, Mt. Laurel, NJ: Dynamite Entertainment will bring its ten-year anniversary celebration to New York City’s Javits Center for the New York Comic-Con 2014, with high-profile booth guests, a can’t-miss panel, and a coveted selection of convention exclusives as the publisher heads to booth #2022 for the four-day event. Fans are encouraged to visit the Dynamite booth and interact with their multitude of creator guests throughout the weekend, October 9th – 12th.

This year’s convention marks Dynamite’s return to show floor exhibition, and to celebrate, the publisher is bringing along some of the top creators in the business for signing sessions all weekend long. Over the course of the weekend, booth #2022 will host such comic book luminaries as:

Alex De Campi Lady Zorro

Anthony Del Col Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini

Brent Peeples Army of Darkness Convention Invasion

Conor McCreery Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini

Cory Smith Magnus: Robot Fighter

Frank J. Barbiere Solar: Man of the Atom

  Frank Tieri Red Sonja: Black Tower

Fred Van Lente Magnus: Robot Fighter

Gail Simone Red Sonja, Legends of Red Sonja

Greg Pak Turok: Dinosaur Hunter

Howard Chaykin The Shadow: Midnight in Moscow

Joe Harris Alice Cooper

Michael Moreci Chaos: The Chosen, Army of Darkness Convention Invasion

Tim Seeley Evil Ernie, Chaos

The publisher will host a panel at 2:00pm on Thursday, October 9th in Room 1B03 entitled “The Dynamite 10th Anniversary Celebration,” featuring a star-studded line-up of creative talent for an “hour of explosive power.” Gail Simone (Red Sonja) will talk about swords-and-sorcery and her upcomingWomen of Dynamite project. Frank Barbiere (Solar: Man of the Atom), Fred Van Lente (Magnus: Robot Fighter) and Greg Pak (Turok: Dinosaur Hunter) will unlock secrets of the Gold Key universe. And finally, Tim Seeley (Evil Ernie) will reveal the behind-the-scenes of bringing Chaos! Comics’ resident madman back to life.

In addition to its exciting programming, Dynamite will be offering one-of-a-kind convention exclusives to fans eager to get their hands on the latest and greatest from Dynamite Entertainment. Limited edition variants of Evil Ernie #1, Mercy Thompson #1, Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini #1, andVampirella: Feary Tales #1 will be made available for purchase, along with convention exclusive editions of Bob’s Burgers #1, based on the Emmy Award-winning animated phenomenon. Convention attendees are encouraged to visit the Dynamite Entertainment booth (#2022) to purchase their convention exclusives before these limited collectibles sell out.

A complete listing of creator signing times can be found below:

 

Dynamite Booth #2022

Thursday, October 9th

1:00PM – 2:00PM Gail Simone (Red Sonja, Legends of Red Sonja)

2:00PM – 3:00PM Anthony Del Col  (Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini)

2:00PM – 3:00PM Conor McCreery  (Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini)

4:00PM – 5:00PM Joe Harris  (Alice Cooper)

 

Dynamite Booth #2022

Friday, October 10th

11:00AM – 12:00PM Frank J. Barbieri (Solar: Man of the Atom)

11:00AM – 12:00PM Fred Van Lente (Magnus: Robot Fighter)

11:00AM – 12:00PM Greg Pak (Turok: Dinosaur Hunter)

11:00AM – 12:00PM Cory Smith (Magnus: Robot Fighter)

1:00PM – 2:00PM Alex De Campi (Lady Zorro)

2:00PM – 3:00PM Gail Simone (Red Sonja, Legends of Red Sonja) 

3:00PM – 4:00PM Michael Moreci (Chaos: The Chosen, Army of Darkness Convention Invasion)

3:00PM – 4:00PM Brent Peeples (Army of Darkness Convention Invasion)

4:00PM – 5:00PM Howard Chaykin (The Shadow: Midnight in Moscow)

 

Dynamite Booth #2022

Saturday, October 11

11:00AM – 12:00PM Alex De Campi (Lady Zorro)

2:00PM – 3:00PM Gail Simone (Red Sonja, Legends of Red Sonja)

3:00PM – 4:00PM Frank Tieri (Red Sonja: The Black Tower) 

4:00PM – 5:00PM Anthony Del Col  (Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini)

4:00PM – 5:00PM Conor McCreery  (Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini)

 

Dynamite Booth #2022

Sunday, October 12th

11:00AM – 12:00PM Anthony Del Col  (Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini)

11:00AM – 12:00PM Conor McCreery  (Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini)

12:00PM – 1:00PM Tim Seeley (Evil Ernie, Chaos)

2:00PM – 3:00PM Gail Simone (Red Sonja, Legends of Red Sonja)

Read More about Dynamite Entertainment New York Comic-Con 2014 Schedule

Django Unchained Sequel Meets Zorro At Dynamite Comics

Press Release

QUENTIN TARANTINO COMES TO DYNAMITE!

THE SEQUEL TO DJANGO UNCHAINED, AS DJANGO MEETS ZORRO!

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June 18th, 2014, Mt. Laurel, NJ:  The acclaimed filmmaker Quentin Tarantino comes to Dynamite for the first time with a sequel to his film Django Unchained, as Django meets the legendary Zorro!  Known for his incredible films that are uniquely “Quentin”, such as Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill, Django/Zorro will stand-out from every comic book coming out this year.  Django/Zorro is co-plotted by Quentin Tarantino and will be co-plotted and written by comic book legend by Matt Wagner (Mage, Grendel, The Shadow, Zorro).  Reginald Hudlin, writer of the Eisner Award nominated Django Unchained screenplay adaptation and a producer of the Django Unchained film, will be working closely with Quentin and Matt as the editor of Django/Zorro! Stay tuned for information on Django/Zorro, set for release later this year from Dynamite Entertainment and DC Entertainment!

“I’m very very excited about both this story and the opportunity to work with Matt.  It was reading his Zorro stories that convinced me what a good idea it was to join these two icons together.  And the story idea we came up with is thrilling, and I think will be an exciting new chapter for both characters.” – Quentin Tarantino[[wysiwyg_imageupload:15888:]]

“This project is an absolute thrill,” adds writer Matt Wagner!  “When Quentin and I first met, it felt like we’d known each other for years.  The give-and-take energy of our initial story sessions was just incredible!  It’s a particular buzz to be writing Zorro once again…and especially to team him up with the magnetic lead character from Quentin’s most straight-up heroic movie, Django Unchained!  The Wild West is never gonna be the same once these two come to town!”

“This series is the first time Quentin Tarantino explored the continuing adventures of one of the characters from his films,” states Django Producer Reggie Hudlin.  “That he would do it in a comic book demonstrates his love and appreciation of the medium.  Quentin is not just a comic collector – he’s got a spinner rack in his house!”

“First and foremost, this is a dream project to have both Quentin and Matt, both master storytellers, collaborate for the first time by bringing the scope of cinema to the comics medium,” says Dynamite CEO/Publisher Nick Barrucci.  “I can’t express how happy I am to co-publish this series with DC Entertainment, and release what is sure to be THE Cross-Over event of the year.”[[wysiwyg_imageupload:15889:]]

“We are excited to see that our Eisner-nominated Django Unchained movie adaptation has inspired Django’s appearance with Zorro and are pleased to be part of what is sure to be a highly-anticipated crossover event,” stated Hank Kanalz, Senior Vice President of Vertigo and Integrated Publishing, DC Entertainment.

“In previous adventures, Zorro’s rich history has teamed him up with the Shadow and with the Lone Ranger, as well as many other iconic characters,” said John Gertz, CEO of Zorro Productions, Inc., “But this will be his greatest meeting yet!  Django and Zorro are the perfect team, and so are Quentin Tarantino and Matt Wagner.  It is an honor for us to work with these two masters of their craft.”[[wysiwyg_imageupload:15890:]]

“Matt has worked hand-in-hand with Quentin to put together a meeting the likes of which comics have never seen.” – Joseph Rybandt, Dynamite Senior Editor

“Django Unchained captures the same spirit as Zorro — namely, that the bad guys get what’s coming to them,” says Keith Davidsen, Marketing Manager of Dynamite Entertainment.  “We’re a culture that has thrilled to, and thrived on, the swift and brutal justice of the vigilante.  In the deft hands of mind-blowing filmmaker Quentin Tarantino and master storyteller Matt Wagner, the explosive comic book pairing of these two Western icons will surely satisfy that most guilty pleasure.”

Read More about Django Unchained Sequel Meets Zorro At Dynamite Comics

Advanced Review: Warlord of Mars #35

“Pain like that knows no distance of time and space,” John Carter says, and he is right.

Warlord of Mars #35 brings to a close one of the most adventurous, one of the most personal, and one of the most painful storylines writer Arvid Nelson has spun in this great SF tapestry.

It all started issues ago with the seeming return of Deja Thoris’ grandsire and the abdication of power by Carter. Right away, even fast for comic book time, things began to smell like three-day-old fish. Suddenly, all the fence-mending and diplomacy Carter had done was for naught as Mars began to bubble with racial strife and tension.

Nelson has taken a very personal tact in this story, as seen through mainly the eyes of Dejah Thoris, who must choose between tradition and marriage, husband and grandfather, red and white. The fact that she did accompany John Carter in his escape as she defied the villain posing as her grandfather said volumes. And as once happened in Frank Miller’s Daredevil,  our hero is suddenly depending less on those friendly ties of today and more on the villains of yesteryear to see him through the falsehood and siege.

In #35’s bombastic yet emotionally quiet conclusion to the tale, our Warlord toddles into a trap just waiting to spring. What is he thinking? But there is method to his seeming madness as a secret – and weakness – is revealed that just might save Barsoom … and the family of John Carter.

I will not brag on how lush or detailed the art of Raphael Lanhellas is, because it is not. But it does dramatically carry forward Nelson’s brilliant script and is dramatic enough to produce some pulse-pounding panel arrangements that left my jaw swinging. It is not Turok, but it is good storytelling, enhanced by the colors of Inlight Studios.

This has been a wonderful tale of survival, and above all family. The ending justifies all the adventure and steps taken toward that conclusion in a story well told. 

Read More about Advanced Review: Warlord of Mars #35

Review: Magnus: Robot Fighter #2

After you have read Magnus #2, you will realize how important the book’s sub-title, “Robot Fighter,” really is.

Russell Magnus is wondering if the mechanoids holding him captive are correct, that his memories of teaching and coaching in Maury’s Peak are just the stuff of dreams as he withers before his captors’ interrogations here in the fantastic world of North Am.

But his memories ARE intact, and he knows that he does have something to fight FOR. And, in this issue, Magnus becomes more familiar with his “abilities,” as it were, as a labeled “Robot Fighter” (think Auschwitz): invisibility shields, super-strength … others?

Russell realizes even robotoids cannot keep Superman in prison, so — bam! — out of confinement he goes and the Fugitive-like hunt is on, with Leeja (she is the one who shot our hero in #1, remember?) playing Gerard to Magnus’ Dr. Richard Kimble.

The tip of the hat writer Fred Van Lente gives to various versions of Magnuses past is awesome, and yes, FVL’s wry wit from Hercules is deftly packaged within this action-packed, diplomatic script.

Bringing FVL’s words to life are the continuing sensational and imaginative panels thrown down by artist Cory Smith. Smith proves not only a great artist, but a wonderful storyteller as well, and them ain’t talents found in a combo order much these days!

I have good feelings about the future of Magnus: Robot Fighter. I hope you as a reader are on board too. Now’s the time (but don’t tell Russell Magnus; just confuse him),

Read More about Review: Magnus: Robot Fighter #2

Review: Flash Gordon #1

Writer Jeff Parker is at it again. Dragging readers into a book I really did not think I would like (how old a property is Flash Gordon?) and almost immediately I am adding to my pull list.

Flash Gordon #1 is a fast, furious and fun romp through the future that has more than a little pulp feel to it, and that is most certainly a good thing. Free of the angst and anger of modern comics, we enjoy Flash and Dale Arden as they go wormholing it through the dimensions associated with the planet Mongo. And there is no secret agenda for Ming. He is refreshingly honest about his intent, and does not wait for the typical last page “big reveal.” There he is, big as you please, right on Page 11.

Also along the way, we get the low-down on Flash and his history with his dad (MORE daddy issues?), his relationship with Dale and also some Mongo background. Even blue aliens and some very UN-pulp actions by Dale!

Artist Evan Shaner does a wonderful job with the art. Clean lines, no murky shadows and vivid action and space scenes that make me hunger for such art in other titles. Jordie Bellaire adds much with a clean color palette, vivid colors matching the enthusiasm of the art.

I do not know what Parker has planned for the future of this title, but it looks like it is gonna be a fun ride. And cosmic!

Read More about Review: Flash Gordon #1

Exclusive Interview: She-Devil with a Sword: Gail Simone staying on Red Sonja

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Although Dynamite Entertainment just today formally announced that writer Gail Simone was extending her critically acclaimed run on its Red Sonja comic, Cosmic Book News M.E. Byron Brewer was already exclusively working behind-the-scenes during the Emerald City Con to get the scoop on this issue.

Discussing her best-selling run, Simone and Brewer talk everything from female characters (and writers!) to working for Dynamite and what makes the She-Devil with a Sword (Sonja, that is) such a great character to write.

Cosmic Book News: Gail, when we first interviewed you about doing Red Sonja for Dynamite, we discussed the seeming phenom of more women writers and more women characters in comics. Is that something that you see continuing in the industry?

Gail Simone: Oh, yeah, definitely…there was a little span of time where the female writers before me had left comics, and I felt very oddball showing up over and over again as the only female writer on superhero panels, and the only female guest at cons. I can’t even express how happy I am to not only see people like Kelly Sue DeConnick and Marjorie Liu and more coming into the industry, but some of my favorites like Devin Grayson, Christy Marx and Nancy Collins are coming back after a long absence. It’s lovely. It was a dream of mine for a long time, now it’s happening.

CBN: Why do you love doing a character like Red Sonja?

Gail Simone: I like that she’s earthy and bawdy. She wants a haunch of meat and about twenty ales and three jugs of wine and maybe a good scrap once in a while. I write a lot of characters like Batgirl, who live in their own heads a great deal. Sonja lives in the moment, in the exact spot where she’s standing. She changes history waking up in the morning. She’s just a blast, she’s in my heart now.

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CBN: What was it about this book that made you want to extend your run?

Gail Simone: Well, a lot of it is how Dynamite treats both myself and the book, to be honest. Dynamite has been open to some pretty wild ideas and we all took those risks together. It’s a joy seeing so many people discover Sonja for the first time, especially people who don’t usually buy Dynamite, or sword and sorcery comics.

But it’s also simply a matter of having one of the most charismatic and wildly entertaining lead characters in comics. Simply put, I’m not done with her yet, and she’s clearly not done with me.

CBN: Was there a certain story you felt you had left uncompleted with Sonja, or are there numerous arcs that you have waiting for our She-Devil with a Sword?

Gail Simone: We did a pretty serious first arc, the second is more fanciful. In our third arc, it’s several connected stories where I get to do the most fun part of these books … monsters! It’s full of creepy crawlies, and a real theme about forgiveness.

CBN: Are there any new foes for Sonja that you are excited about  in your extended run? Any old big-bads returning?

Gail Simone: Not telling … but yes and YES.

CBN: Why do you think your particular version of Red Sonja has caught on so well with the readership?

Gail Simone: I want to be careful here, because I don’t want to give the wrong impression, but a lot of sword and sorcery comics in the past have tended to be a bit alienating. You know, first page is a map and some dull narration about the fallen empire of Wienerstan. I wanted to try to incorporate that stuff in a more organic way.  And I want to present Sonja as a woman with bad manners and many other flaws. I think people know we are all having a blast, and it shows in the book. It’s a labor of love.

And I also have to say, SO much of the credit has to go to the art team. It’s Walter Giovani just nailing it every issue, topping himself time and again. Great colors by Adriano Lucas and perfect lettering by Simon Bowland, it’s just an amazing looking book every time.

And the covers are just a feast, we got the best female artists anywhere, all my favorites, and they have just gone wild with Sonja.

There are a ton of good comics out there, but I think people can feel the love in this book.

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CBN: In a dream scenario, is there any artist you would like to work with on a Red Sonja book or any author with whom you would like to co-write Sonja?

Gail Simone: Well, that’s the thing, I HAD all those dreams, and we went out and did them! We got covers by Colleen Doran, Amanda Conner, Becky Cloonan, just on and on and on, and then we did Legends of Red Sonja with a virtual Who’s Who of all my favorite female authors, some who had never done comics before. My dreams have already come true in a big way.

And honestly, I am so happy working with Walter that I can hardly ask for more.

CBN: When comic collectors and enthusiasts look back on your run of Red Sonja a decade from now, what would you hope they would say about it? And you?

Gail Simone: I would hope they would say, damn, that redhead is badass.

And Sonja’s pretty cool, too!

Cosmic Book News would like to thank the fantastically busy Gail Simone for taking time during the madness of the Emerald City Con to answer our questions. Thanks to Dynamite’s own Nick Barrucci and Keith Davidsen who helped make this interview possible.

Read More about Exclusive Interview: She-Devil with a Sword: Gail Simone staying on Red Sonja

Advance Review: Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #3

The Crusaders conquered much of the known Anglo-Saxon world in the 11th Century AD. Why not? Had not God Himself perched eagle-like on their collective shoulder.

But one thing the history books left out: They had dinosaurs!

In Manhattan, 1210 (that’s before Columbus and the Pilgrims, folks), the Crusaders have landed in NYC’s heart with some thunder lizards and others. Here dwells the outcast Turok, shunned by his tribe and nature itself.

He was going up against the local bullies when all this came down in Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1. Now the Crusaders are killing everything in sight … except for the dinosaurs, of course, which will be doing their own damage shortly.

Ah, but Turok has a hostage as important to the Crusaders’ leader as their mission itself. The question is, who can act fastest: Turok or the invaders’ most potent weapon?

When Dynamite began unlocking the Gold Key Universe, I had my doubts of its validity in this modern world. But Turok has, as I said, become a sort of modern Conan. And the art of Mirko Colak and Cory Smith drips details of this exotic realm and the giants that are tearing it apart.

Likewise Greg Pak is doing some of his best work ever. Controlled, moody, great character work and bringing a real feel to what could have been a rather cartoony presentation.

I look forward to Turok: Dinosaur Hunter every month, and so should you.

Read More about Advance Review: Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #3

Exclusive Interview: Denton puts polish on new Man of Bronze annual

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The Man of Bronze is busting loose monthly in his own ongoing from Dynamite, but apparently that is not enough to contain the first superhero. So the King of Pulp will be coming out in an all-new annual in May by Shannon Eric Denton with art and cover by Roberto Castro.

Following the loss of a squad mate, Doc is on the way to South America to connect with an old flame and, although he does not know it, do a major reassessment of his life, his place in the scheme of things. No relaxing here as adventure is around every curve.

To get more details on this annual, Cosmic Book News M.E. Byron Brewer met exclusively with Shannon Eric Denton to discuss Doc’s strange place in the hearts of comic book fans.

Cosmic Book News: Doc Savage barely has its ear wet as a book. How did an annual crop up so soon?

Shannon Eric Denton: Well, after 80-plus years in existence we felt like the time was right! Chris and Bilquis are doing such an awesome job with the regular series. That excitement they generated for the character led the fine folks at Dynamite to make it happen now which I am extremely grateful for!

CBN: How did you happen to become attached to the project? Is it something you pitched?

Shannon Eric Denton: I’ve worked with Dynamite a lot from projects like the Spider to Green Hornet to the Lone Ranger, etc.  Dynamite has some awesome characters in their arsenal of books. Many of these characters I spent my childhood learning about so it’s rewarding when you can mix your fandom with your professional career as a writer. Molly Mahan, Joseph Rybandt and Nick Barrucci had been told many times (by myself) how much I loved Doc Savage so when the opportunity arose they were kind enough to ask me to be involved.

CBN: Is this in regular Dynamite Doc continuity?

Shannon Eric Denton: I didn’t want to get it in the way of anything Chris was doing so it’s set right before the first Doc Savage novel, The Man of Bronze.  So it’s in the continuity but pre-dating it. My Doc Savage is a little more unsure of his destiny and preparing to step into the role that we all know and love.

CBN: Any particular work of fiction that may be the inspiration for this annual’s tale?

Shannon Eric Denton: There’s a lot of stuff thrown in.  From my own real-world experiences living in New Mexico to travels down into Mexico to my love of the pulps, comic books, and movies of this era. It’s really tough to lock down any one element as I tried to fit so much into this story to truly make it worthy of being a Doc Savage adventure.

CBN: This tale is very soul-searching for Doc, isn’t it? What will we as readers discover about Doc, and what might he discover about himself (non-spoiler answer, of course)?

Shannon Eric Denton: Really it’s about the discovery of who he is.  He knows who he’s supposed to be from his isolated upbringing. His childhood was spent training to be the best of the best in all fields but what we’ll see in this story is a guy who isn’t really sure that’s who he wants to be.  Many of us have expectations put on us in our lives. It’s sometimes hard to sort out your expectations of yourself versus the expectations of others upon you. Sometimes those turn out to be the same thing but getting to that point of acceptance isn’t always easy. So basically what we’ll discover is that despite being superhuman in so many ways, really he’s just a human like any of us …who happens to be able to do advanced surgery, a zillion push-ups, and achieve scientific breakthroughs in his spare time!

CBN: Any new big-bads?

Shannon Eric Denton: Yes! We’ve got several and I’m really looking forward to revisiting a few of them! Doc is really going to have his hands full in this issue!

CBN: Will the effects of this annual be seen on the Doc Savage we know going forward?

Shannon Eric Denton: I hope so.  I set it up in a way that works with what Chris is doing but could spin off in a number of ways.  I know the first annual isn’t out yet but there are still stories to be told!

CBN: What do you hope readers derive from this work?

Shannon Eric Denton: Fun! Doc Savage (and that whole era of the pulps) was meant to be fun. They were an adventure-filled escape so I’m hoping the fans are able to experience that sense of fun and adventure with my story.

CBN: What was it like working with Roberto Castro?

Shannon Eric Denton: Roberto is amazing.  It’s nice working with someone whose draftsmanship is so good.  The pages coming in are truly phenomenal.

CBN: Any projects you would like to discuss?

Shannon Eric Denton: Yes! So much fun stuff out there soon! I’ve got Ash & the Army of Darkness Annual (also from Dynamite), the X-Files Annual from IDW, and tons of fun stuff I’m editing for Lion Forge like Miami Vice, Knight Rider, Airwolf and Rampage Jackson.  You should also be watching the show I storyboarded on called Ultimate Spider-Man on Disney XD! For more info, go to www.shannondenton.com! Thanks!

Cosmic Book News would like to thank Shannon Eric Denton for taking time out of his busy schedule to answer our questions. We would also like to thank Dynamite’s own Nick Barrucci and Keith Davidsen for helping make this interview possible.

“Doc Savage” Annual 2014 hits stores in May!

Read More about Exclusive Interview: Denton puts polish on new Man of Bronze annual

Advanced Review: Battlestar Galactica #9

One of the most frightening storylines in the history of the franchise comes to a conclusion Wednesday as fan fave sci-fi writer Dan Abnett takes us through our reading paces in Battlestar Galactica #9.

In an effort to escape the villainous Cylons, the mighty Galactica has led the way for its rag-tag fleet, leading the space armada into uncharted space. There, the heroes discovered an ancient cosmic mystery. The answers to questions both the humanoids and the Cylons would ask are answered by Abnett in dramatic and startling fashion as “Dreams of the Thirteenth” comes to a conclusion.

Abnett has utilized each chapter of this arc to let us know those traveling aboard the legendary Battlestar and those they have encountered along the way, fleshing out the characters with familiar nuances and also some startling revelations. Abnett has made this book a truly connected product of the franchise from which it is spun.

What does the mystery have to do with Earth? To those who knew the TV show well, the title itself is a big clue.

I am impressed by the way Abnett has not only maintained but built upon the familiar characters of the show. To that end, artist Cezar Razek has the unenviable task of bringing real people into a fantastic comic book setting. He does it with great storytelling, wonderful facial expressions and, I must admit, sometimes a tad bit of cartoonishness. But those instances are rare.

Battlestar Galactica continues the line of licensed properties being turned out by companies today. The difference here? The involvement of Abnett, and quality. Fun read.

Read More about Advanced Review: Battlestar Galactica #9

Exclusive: Troy Brownfield gives royal life to Dynamite’s Blood Queen

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Dynamite Entertainment in June will be taking comic book readers into the world of dark fantasy with Blood Queen #1.

Put together by the team of writer Troy Brownfield (Grimm Fairy Tales) and artist Fritz Casas (Miss Fury, Red Sonja), Blood Queen is set against the fairytale backdrop of knights and magic. Inspired by the true story of the Countess Elizabeth BathoryBlood Queen imagines the Renaissance era as a colorful nightmare of  mayhem, lust and sorcery.

To get to the heart of the matter, Cosmic Book News Managing Editor Byron Brewer and scribe Brownfield met beside the mote of an ancient castle in Scotland. There, our M.E. got this exclusive interview.

Cosmic Book News: So, Troy, is this something you pitched or …?

Troy Brownfield: I guess you could say that it’s a bit of a combination, Byron. I was approached by Blood Queen editor Molly Mahan; a basic premise existed, and she wanted to see what I could bring to it. I put together a proposal that spoke to what Dynamite wanted to accomplish with the book, and they went for it. It’s been a fun ride.

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CBN: Tell us about the world you are about to create.

Troy Brownfield: Our setting is what you might call a fantasy kingdom. There’s a feudal system with a number of adjoining regions each ruled by a king. The kings meet in a council over particular dire events, and some of those events are coming. Within this setting, magic is quite real, and it’s ordered in a number of particular disciplines. That fact becomes a plot point very quickly. In a way, it’s like a familiar fairy tale kingdom, but there’s real world rot underneath.

CBN: And your main protagonists?

Troy Brownfield: The main character is Elizabeth. She was raised by Elder Winnifred, a witch that’s tasked with teaching basic nature magic and healing to the royal daughters of the various kingdoms. As such, Elizabeth is extremely intelligent and skilled in various magic forms. A crisis in the kingdom sees Elizabeth sent to court to try to save a royal child. Other characters that we follow early are the knight Sir Ferenc, the king’s advisor Jon Hunter, and the king’s niece Helena (who arrives in issue #2).

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CBN: What is it like spinning such a story in the trappings of a “fantasy kingdom”?

Troy Brownfield: Honestly, it’s huge fun. In a fantasy setting with magic and monsters available, literally anything can  happen. My goal is to be able to use these fabulous and unbelievable trappings, but weave into characters that have realistic and understandable motivations.

CBN: Will we see any interesting supporting characters?

Troy Brownfield: I hope you find them all interesting. (laughs)  Elder Winnifred might be my favorite; she’s got an intense backstory. Keep your eye on Helena, too.

CBN: And the main big-bad?

Troy Brownfield: I’m taking the fifth on that.  There’s an element of that which might become obvious early on, but the only thing that you should expect are twists and turns.

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CBN: Where do you get inspiration for such a comic?

Troy Brownfield: My inspiration for a project never comes from one thing, exactly. In my mind, there’s a bit of a blend of the writings of Angela Carter, the Hammer Karnstein films, Disney’s Wicked Queen, the real-life Blood Countess Elizabeth Bathory, and metal (Dio, Ghost B.C., Slayer . . . particularly Slayer). And that’s not to say that I’m pulling some from column A and some from column B. You want to stir up those influences so that they float in a kind of storm front that makes its presence felt in the weather of the plot.

CBN: What does artist Fritz Casas bring to this fantasy stew? Are you a fan?

Troy Brownfield: Fritz Casas is awesome, period. I’d seen his work before and admired it, but the first character turns he did for this shocked me. And they shocked me because he made the cast look almost exactly like they looked in my head. There was no dissonance there at all; I literally thought they were perfect the first time that I saw them. He did a killer job on the first issue. He’s basically been asked to visualize a world from the ground up, and he’s doing a terrific job.

CBN: What do you hope a reader will come away with after reading issue #1?

Troy Brownfield: A burning desire to read issue #2. Seriously, I really hope that they enjoy the story. There’s more to it than they might anticipate, and it looks great. I hope that the readers latch on to Elizabeth and the rest of the cast and are intrigued enough by events and the last panel to keep moving along with us. And in my opinion, the ending of issue 2 will be a shock.

CBN: Troy, any projects current or future you would like to discuss?

Troy Brownfield: My webcomics Sparkshooter (drawn by the awesome Enkaru) and Solo Acoustic (art by the excellent Ben Olson) come out every Wednesday and Friday, respectively, at www.sparkshooter.com. And I’m writing Wonderland: Clash of Queens #3-5 for Zenescope beginning in April. I’m also hoping to do some more for Dynamite, as they’ve been outstanding through the process and announcement of Blood Queen.  I can’t say enough good things about Molly Mahan, my editor, and I owe continual thanks to Nick Barrucci and the hard work of Keith Davidsen, Dynamite’s Marketing Manager. Nick has assembled a solid group of people over there, and they’ve really gotten behind what we’re doing on this book. I really hope the readers get into it, because I think it has the potential to be very cool and open to a long run.

Cosmic Book News would like to thank Troy Brownfield for taking time out of his busy schedule to answer our questions. Also thanks to Dynamite’s own Nick Barrucci and Keith Davidsen who helped make this interview possible.

“Blood Queen” #1 hits stores in June!

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Advanced Review: Turok, Dinosaur Hunter #2

Those who are not great fans of history may turn a dark eye to Dynamite’s new rendition of Gold Key’s Turok: Dinosaur Hunter, but do not be so fast. Last issue was full of soulful meaning and introspection, and #2 is no different.

It is 1210 and we hit Manhattan with a band of Crusaders who just happen to have a ship full of dinosaurs. These are not your old timey Gold Key/Godzilla dinosaurs, but realistic looking residents of the Earth a few mil ago. Together with his “friend” who was just about to kill him, our shunned tribesman Turok observes the impossible and strives to understand, strives to aright justice in his own mind as his fellow Native Americans are tortured and slain.

As usual, it is all about the Benjamins. In this case, the love of gold.

Writer Greg Pak fills each issue (and there have only been two) with so much character development, so much texture and background that it feels like a flarkin’ annual. I cannot wait until the rest of the Gold Key Universe appears to see if those mags can keep up with the current franchise forerunner. Pak is hitting his stride here as a plotter and scripter, and shows a new maturity in his use of storytelling form.

Meanwhile, Mirko Colak is filling this book with such eye-popping art that each panel looks like wallpaper I would love to download. The detail is tremendous, reminding me of the painstaking work Barry Smith used to put in Conan the Barbarian back in the day at Marvel. And if you do remember those classic sagas, then you have a good comparison for what Pak and Colak are doing here.

I cannot imagine any great praise than that.  

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Advanced Review: Warlord of Mars #34

Writer Arvid Nelson continues his sword and sorcery mystery of the return of the ruler of Mars, placing both Warlord John Carter and the future of the Red Planet in jeopardy.

At first believed to be who he appeared to be, John Carter and Deja Thoris have discovered her “grandfather” is actually the long-missing Xerius, leader of the Orovars of long ago. Finding life in a seed pod from the Tree of Life, a legend which is credited for giving rise to all life on Mars, Xerius took Carter’s power as warlord … and almost his life!

Xerius has kidnapped and is torturing his “grandson,” Carthoris, using the lad’s psychic emanations to lure Carter and Deja Thoris out of hiding. But Carter is determined to discover Xerius’ secret and, with the aid of an old ally, looks deep into the mind of history, into the “Mind of Issus.”

Nelson gives us a rare peek into the psychic powers of John Carter in this issue, as he delves into the brain of a dead person to discover the reasoning behind the rise of Xerius to power and how he came to be in the seed pod, returning to today’s world. Not only is this a great review of Carter’s Barsoom history but actually important to the back story as a whole.

Artist Rafael Lanhellas brings Nelson’s script to life with vivid scenery and alien landscapes. His panel arrangements and facial expressions, even on aliens, convey the drama and levity of this complex book. We even feel sorry for Xerius for a moment. And oh, poor Carthoris!

Warlord of Mars remains a dependable monthly sampling of great sci-fi, racial strife and strong character. What else could a reader want?

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Advanced Review: The Black Bat #9

Under the creative pen of writer Brian Buccellato, The Black Bat has become one of the most puzzling mystery reads every month. And, need I say, entertaining.

The noir vibe is here in force, yes, but this is also a modern saga of redemption, revenge, renewal and corruption. The latter is served up plenty in issue #9.

To rescue the woman he loves, or thinks he loves, our hero must break his most dread enemy out of prison, the man who is responsible for all his current miseries, including the loss of his sight.

Or is he? The dramatic climax of this issue brings that in doubt, as well as presents a special predicament for the crimefighter’s continued future.

Meanwhile, the police and the DA’s office have put out a warrant for our vigilante, put prices on his head and who knows where that will lead. Buccellato has done an excellent job of allowing our protagonist to paint himself in a corner, with no which way to turn. I am curious myself.

What can I say about the continually excellent art of Ronan Cliquet? Competent and capturing Buccellato’s script perfectly .. in fact, without words a lot of times … Cliquet’s Black Bat this issue reminds me of Gene Colan’s early Daredevil work. The large panels, expressive human faces and taught action scenes: they all scream Colan, and they all scream excellence! Double kudos to the mute then powerful pallette of colorist Mat Lopes. Excellent!

The Black Bat may just be the best book on the stands you are not reading. If not, why not? For comic book fans, mystery fans, street level hero fans and (need I say?) “bat” fans, this is the one. 

Read More about Advanced Review: The Black Bat #9

Review: Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1

The Gold Key Universe has a strong start as Turok: Dinosaur Hunter hit the stands Wednesday. However, I must say it was not what I was expecting.

I usually associate Greg Pak with a sense of the light-hearted, and I thought we would see some dino smashing in the tradition of the old Gold Key books. Instead, Turok is a deeply soulful study of a Native American youth, divorced from his tribe, who suffers for the sins of his parents.

Not exactly a “fun” read, but very involving and entertaining in its own way. For old schoolers, closer to Marvel’s Jungle Action with the Black Panther than DC’s A Larfleeze Christmas (or whatever that book was called).

I was very intrigued by where this was going, and am certainly excited by what I found within the pages and will return for #2.

One of the things I found is wonderfully beautiful storytelling art by Mirko Colak. The first splash page not only sets the tone for the book, but I would not mind having it framed and on my living room wall. Colak is wonderful with character studies, facial expressions and script-enhancing panel arrangements. The flow is magnificent!

I hope the other Gold Key books can follow suit. If so, Dynamite has a dynamo on its hands!

Read More about Review: Turok: Dinosaur Hunter #1

Exclusive: Frank Barbiere brings Solar: Man of the Atom into the sunlight

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Another Gold Key character returns to the printed page as writer Frank Barbiere (Five Ghosts) and artist Joe Bennett (Iron Man) bring Solar: Man of the Atom to Dynamite Entertainment.

To discover the mystery of the space adventurer’s return, Cosmic Book News M.E. Byron Brewer caught the latest rocket to the outer solar system to exclusively discuss the matter with Barbiere.

Cosmic Book News: Frank, how does it feel to be working with some of these legendary Gold Key characters, bringing them back to today’s comics readers?

Frank Barbiere: It’s a huge honor.  The level of talent that Dynamite is bringing to these books is astounding, and to be involved is really a writer’s dream.  The characters are just so rich and have so many possibilities — Dynamite has really just let us run wild with our imaginations and craft something we can all be immensely proud of.

CBN: Tell us the basic premise behind Solar: Man of the Atom. Is it a superhero comic, a space comic?

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Frank Barbiere: I came into Solar really wanting to focus on character.  For me, character is truly what drives a story and gets readers invested.  We all know there will be cool cosmic stuff, superheroic elements, but I was mainly concerned with finding something new and exciting in terms of Solar himself.  To this end, we’ve introduced a family dynamic to the book that adds a much needed weight to all of the action.  We have actual characters who are affected by what transpires, a lot of which is big, fun action on a galactic scale, and to me, that makes it matter.  And to return to your original statement, I’d say it’s a superhero space comic grounded by a very human cast of characters.  You know, just to work in every adjective we can, haha.

CBN: Tell us about Solar, his character/civilian identity, and his world.

Frank Barbiere: To continue with my previous point, we’ve put a lot of thought into establishing Phil Seleski, the man who becomes Solar.  He’s a brilliant scientist who started his own company with his son, Colin, and we see the burden his intelligence has on his family/personal life.  Clearly becoming Solar turns his personal life upside down, as well as opening up a whole new world to Phil; imagine an incredibly brilliant man who is fascinated by the entire universe suddenly having access to everything and anything. This is our springboard and we’ve crafted the story from there — how would the actions Phil take reverberate throughout his family, the world, and the universe?

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CBN: So tell us about this family, these supporting characters.

Frank Barbiere: The biggest supporting characters are Phil’s adult children, Colin and Erica.  They’re twins and have “inherited” different sides of his genius.  Colin is a brilliant businessman and has stayed by Phil’s side — together they’ve created a company that’s on the verge of solving the energy crisis … that is, if they can put their differences aside.  Erica has been the blacksheep of the family, far more interested in art and being a “builder” — this has lead her to reject the corporate science elements of the family and become an architect, actually separating herself from the family as well as the family business.  Events that unfold in issue #1 brings the family back together in an exciting way.  There’s a lot of history and emotion tied to the story, and I think readers are really going to care about all three of our characters … and the opportunity to have a “nuclear family” just seemed to perfect to shy away from.

CBN: And first up, the big-bad is … ?

Frank Barbiere:  Though it’s too early for us to give away any real answers, we are going to see a dual conflict on the personal level and on an extraterrestrial/galactic level.  Clearly Solar has joined an intergalactic community, for better or worse, and let’s just say not every citizen of the cosmos is happy to see him.

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CBN: What interests you about this type of character?

Frank Barbiere: Firstly, I love the challenge of approaching such a storied and classic character and turning him loose to a new audience.  There’s so much to love about this character, such a rich history, and the excitement and sometimes intimidation of how to craft my own sensibilities into the character are a fantastic inspiration.  On top of that, as I’ve said, Solar is a GALACTIC character — he’s a brilliant mind capable of exploring not just earth, but the entire UNIVERSE, and that just opens us up to so many wonderful story possibilities.  But most importantly, at the core, I think there is an incredible character in Solar — a man who is given almost god-like abilities, a troubled genius who has been trying to “save the world” and is suddenly given the capacity to do so.  Seeing how such a change affects him and the ones around him is the most exciting aspect of the project.

CBN: Where are you getting inspiration for Solar? The Gold Key originals, the Jim Shooter issues or other sources?

Frank Barbiere: I’ve tried to keep it as much of “my own” thing as much as possible.  Dynamite has been incredibly supportive by letting me really present my own take, not being bogged down by years of history and continuity, and I think that’s what’s made the whole Gold Key line so fresh and exciting.  I’ve done a lot of reading of the classic 60’s Solar, and certainly I’ve mined some fun stuff from there that will be popping up.  It’s such good comics and was so innovative at the time — hopefully people will look to our Solar in the same way one day.

CBN: So what does Joe Bennett bring to the table on this book?

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Frank Barbiere:  Joe has done an incredible job of bringing the script to life.  He has a beautiful, cinematic style that reads so well — he’s really a dream to work with as a writer.  Each shot is composed in such an exciting, fresh way … readers will be drawn in by his great storytelling and wonderful use of detail.  Our colorist, Lauren Affe, has done an amazing job of complimenting Joe’s work and has given the book a beautiful palette that really pops right off the page.  Dynamite is coming out of the gate with a beautiful batch of books for the Gold Key launch — I think readers are going to be blown away by the level of quality and craft given to these titles.

CBN: What do you hope new readers discover about this pulp space character?

Frank Barbiere: I’m hoping that readers are excited by the characters we are presenting and become invested in the story we’re telling.  We’re working really hard to have an exciting story that MATTERS, not just a generic story that runs a superhero through the machinations of plot.  If we’ve done our jobs right, people will be talking about this iteration of Solar for years to come, and hopefully we’ll still be here telling the stories of these characters with the same level of excitement and enthusiasm!

CBN: Frank, any projects present or future you would care to discuss?

Frank Barbiere:  I’m currently working on my ongoing title Five Ghosts at Image Comics, which is entering its second year.  If you enjoy my work on Solar, I’d recommend checking it out!

Cosmic Book News would like to thank Frank Barbiere for answering our questions during his very busy schedule. Thanks also to Dynamite’s own Nick Barrucci who helped make this interview possible.

“Solar: Man of the Atom” #1 hits stores April 16!

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Advanced review: Warlord of Mars #33

A major discovery of Barsoom antiquity, the answer to the mystery of the two towers (and the real whereabouts of Dejah Thoris’ grandfather), plus a shocking climax no one will expect!

Writer Arvid Nelson brings it all together in this chapter of the ongoing “Tyrant of Mars” arc wherein a returning Tardos Mors has seized power from John Carter and suddenly brought war to the races of Mars.

Meanwhile, with the help of friends and enemies alike, Carter, Deja Thoris and Carthoris have arrived at the Otz Mountains, near the Antarctic circle of the Red Planet. They seek the knowledge of the ancient white-skinned Therns, something to explain what is happening around their world (including Tardos Mors’ return) but it appears the new Warlord has gotten there first.

John Carter makes a deal with the devil to learn the answers he seeks, and one of his own pays the price!

Artist Wagner Reis carries Nelson’s script panel for panel, with some breath-taking views of Barsoom and its alien landscapes. The beauty and sheer weirdness of some of it conjures the loneliness and the unknown of space travel and planetary exploration.

Nelson always gives great action, fantastic science fiction in the Burroughs tradition, and that touch of mystery and character that keeps readers satisfied and coming back to Warlord of Mars.

Read More about Advanced review: Warlord of Mars #33

Exclusive: Jeff Parker celebrates 80 years of Flash Gordon in new book

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On the advent of his 80th birthday, pulp science fiction hero Flash Gordon will be zooming from the pages of Kings Watch to his own ongoing comic.

To discover the details behind this move by comic book publisher Dynamite Entertainment, Cosmic Book News Managing Editor Byron Brewer exclusively caught the first spaceship to Mongo to talk with the writer of the new book, coming in April, Jeff Parker.

Cosmic Book News: Jeff, how exciting does it feel to be putting out a book on sci-fi hero Flash Gordon on the advent of his 80th birthday — AND Dynamite’s 10th anniversary?

Jeff Parker: It’s pretty great, what a perfect confluence of landmarks. It’s all really coming together.

CBN: Jeff, as a writer, where do you begin to search for your inspiration for such a story as Flash Gordon #1? Old comics, the early movie serials, the lampoon movie or elsewhere?

Jeff Parker: I’m not even sure, I feel like I’m synthesizing all of it then picking my favorite bits and filling in with whatever my subconscious gives up. Except for the SyFy series, that didn’t look so good to me. 

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CBN: And Jeff Parker got attached to this august project in what way?

Jeff Parker: Nate Cosby asked me once he joined Dynamite, without knowing that I’ve had an idea for how to handle Flash lodged in the back of my head for years. 

CBN: What can you tell us about the awesome story that will return the Man from Earth to comics?

Jeff Parker: It picks up right out of Kings Watch, which will make sense at the end of KW #5. But if you begin only with Flash Gordon #1, you won’t be lost, his time on Mongo begins right then.

CBN: Who of Flash’s old cast will we see? Any new supporting characters or droids?

Jeff Parker: Well of course he pulled Dale Arden and Dr. Hans Zarkov along. At first we’re going to see Prince Barin, of Arboria. And a lion fellow.

CBN: I know it might seem incredible, but for those who are unfamiliar with this hero tell us a little bit about your interpretation of Flash Gordon. How is Jeff Parker’s Flash unique?

Jeff Parker: Going back to the idea lodged in my head — my take is essentially that Flash is a jack of all-trades rich boy adventurer who almost doesn’t fit in on Earth. He’s a champ at archaic sports like polo and fencing, and excels at mountain climbing, swimming …anything that you can’t make much of a career at, Flash is the master of. It drives his father nuts, because he wanted Flash to take over his role in Gordon Enterprises. 

But once Flash gets to Mongo, suddenly he is THE MAN. Every territory is made for him, riding monster steeds with an energy-charged sword, that is what he was born to do! And his reputation precedes him fast — and enrages Ming. 

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CBN: When readers get through with this first issue of Flash Gordon, they should feel … what? 

Jeff Parker: Tired and exhilarated. 

CBN: How long into the arc will it take for Ming to rear his ugly head?

Jeff Parker: About five pages!

CBN: What does artist Evan Shaner bring to the table?

Jeff Parker: EVERYTHING! Everything about Evan’s art and what he likes to draw fits and drives this story. It is going to be one of the purest embraces of the comics medium you’ll see this year. With Evan’s first sketch of Flash, he absolutely nailed him. You love the character immediately. His sense of design is perfect for it. 

Our Flash is a really positive guy, he loves these wild experiences. To show a character that way and be convincing is harder than it looks, and Evan does it very naturally. Typically the approach is to go darker and more serious when doing a new version, but I feel it’s done to death, and it doesn’t work for every book. The danger in this book is serious enough, and our hero stands out because of it. 

CBN: Jeff, any other projects present or future would you like to discuss?

Jeff Parker: Well, when you order this, you should probably also have it put in a file with Aquaman and Batman ’66, just saying.

Cosmic Book News would like to thank Jeff Parker for answering our questions during his busy schedule. We would also like to thank Dynamite’s Nick Barrucci who helped make this interview possible.

“Flash Gordon” #1 hits stores in April!

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Exclusive: Arvid Nelson talks 100th issue of Dynamite’s Warlord of Mars

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On the heels of today’s announcement by Dynamite Entertainment that it will be putting out a special commemorative edition of Warlord of Mars (numbered #100) to celebrate the nearly one hundred issues which have been released to date by the comic book publisher, Cosmic Book News Managing Editor Byron Brewer got on the horn to the Red Planet and exclusively got the skinny from the horse’s mouth: regular series writer Arvid Nelson.

As we understand, Dynamite will be releasing a special celebratory Warlord of Mars#100 as a special squarebound issue with multiple stories. Featuring a who’s who of today’s best comic artists inside, Warlord of Mars #100 features covers by Joseph Michael Linsner, Jay Anacleto, Fabiano Neves, Emanuela Lupacchino and Stephanie Buscema.  Also featuring special bonus material, this comic can be found in stores and also can be read digitally this coming April.

Now, for the real story, straight from Barsoom!

Cosmic Book News: Arvid, you have been with Warlord of Mars since the very beginning. As a writer, what does this collection of work mean to you?

Arvid Nelson: I’m surprised and pleased it’s had such a storied run. Above all, Warlord of Mars has come to mean a tremendous deal to me on a personal level. I poured my heart into every single issue, and I feel like it’s on par with any other title on the racks. I can’t claim full credit – or even most of the credit – because I owe so much to Joe, my editor, and to all the wonderful artists who’ve contributed. But yes, I’m proud of what we accomplished.

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CBN: Tell us about this very special issue of Warlord of Mars.

Arvid Nelson: It’s a big, fat, explosion of Warlord of Mars, with contributions from most of the writers who’ve worked on Warlord and its related titles. All the stories are going to focus on Woola, John Carter’s Martian “hound”. When Molly at Dynamite approached me with the idea of Woola-centric stories, I immediately punched myself in the face, because I wish I had thought of it.

CBN: What will these Woola concern? Will it involve individual stories or a continuing tale done by many writers?

Arvid Nelson: Robert Napton – he’s the writer of the Dejah Thoris series – and I are doing a two-part story. Robert’s half is set 400 years before Carter’s arrival, and my half takes place during Carter’s reign as Warlord. More than that, I dare not say!

CBN: Besides Robert and yourself, sir, tell me about the writing talent involved on this great book.

Arvid Nelson: Well, there is Robert Napton, of course. I finally met him last year, and we’ve become fast friends. It’s weird, we share a lot of interests outside of Warlord of Mars. Robert’s working on a YA novel, which he showed to me, and it’s awesome. I’m working on a novel, too, and get this – we both, independently, decided to work with the same editor! [Mark Rahner also writes for #100.]

CBN: Ha! And the art?

Arvid Nelson: The best thing about Warlord of Mars, for me personally, has been collaborating with so many talented artists from all over the globe. Brazil, the Philippines, Germany, the United States… you name it. Each artist brings their own unique set of strengths to the story. Writing to an artist’s strengths is a big part of being a good comic book writer.

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CBN: Is this part of John Carter’s regular continuity?

Arvid Nelson: Yeah, it’s part of Dynamite Warlord “canon”.

CBN: Arvid, what makes John Carter a character that you and other scribes want to write?

Arvid Nelson: For me, and I’ve said this before, it’s about finding Carter’s vulnerabilities and flaws. His shyness and clumsiness, especially around women, is what makes him interesting.

CBN: Oh yeah, who is the big-bad that is taking John Carter through this special issue?

Arvid Nelson: One of the things that occurred to Robert and me is that Woola really needs to be the “star” of our story. So Carter plays a central role, but it’s really about loveable, homely old Woola. And for our story it’s not so much a person Woola is up against – it’s a thing. A sword. Doh! Said too much.

CBN: (laughs) Don’t you think it would be nice if John Carter appeared on the cover of Warlord of Mars #100 instead of a nude Dejah Thoris? (laughs)

Arvid Nelson: Hah, yes! In fact, we do Carter covers from time to time. Steve Sadowski, the artist of the first two issues of Warlord, did some great covers featuring Carter solo. I especially love the one of Carter kneeling in chains, and the one of his son, Carthoris, being pulled at by dozens of green Martian hands.

CBN: All the die-hard fans of Warlord of Mars (like me) hope you have a lot more in store for us in the regular book?

Arvid Nelson: I really hope so, Byron! All things must come to an end, including Warlord of Mars. But we’ve got some surprises in store. All I can say is “stay tuned,” so please do!

Cosmic Book News would like to thank Arvid Nelson for answer our questions during his busy schedule. We would also like to thank Dynamite’s own Nick Barrucci who helped make this timely interview possible.

“Warlord of Mars” #100 hits stores in April!

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