Image Comics

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Diamond Announces 2015 Diamond Gem Awards For Comic Books

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Diamond Announces 2015 Diamond Gem Awards

Image Comics Named Publisher of the Year in Annual Industry Awards Voted on Exclusively by Comic Book Retailers

 

Diamond Comic Distributors proudly announces the winners of its 2015 Diamond Gem Awards, selected exclusively by comic book specialty retailers and recognized within the industry as the pinnacle of sales achievement for publishers, industry executives, and creators.

Image Comics was voted by retailers as the 2015 Comic Book Publisher of the Year (Over 4% Market Share). Image also took home five Gem Awards overall, including 2015 Comic Book of the Year (Under $3.00) and Best New Comic Series for Paper Girls #1 from Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang; Reprint TP of the Year for The Walking Dead Compendium Volume 3, and Anthology of the Year for Island #1.

DC Entertainment took home five Gem Awards, including Backlist Publisher of the Year and Best Original Graphic Novel of the Year for Batman: Earth One HC Volume 2, among others. Marvel Comics received three Gem Awards, including Star Wars #1 voted as Comic Book of the Year (Over $3.00).  Dark Horse was recognized as 2015’s Best Free Comic Book Day Title for Fight Club/The Goon/The Strain.

Gem Awards were also presented to BOOM! Studios (Comic Book Publisher of the Year, Under 4% Market Share, Best All-Ages Series for Lumberjanes, and Best All-Ages Graphic Novel for Lumberjanes Volume One TP); VIZ Media (Manga Publisher of the Year), Oni Press, Funko, Wizards of the Coast, and others.

“The Gem Awards give retailers an opportunity to recognize and congratulate the suppliers, titles, and products that served to help grow their businesses in 2015,” said Diamond President & CEO Steve Geppi. “Our suppliers produced and published an enormous amount of top-quality titles and products that really supported retailers and the entire industry, and we thank all of the retailers who took the time from their busy schedules to vote and acknowledge those efforts.”

Nominees for the Diamond Gem Awards were chosen by a panel of Diamond product specialists based on their overall impact on the industry, while comics and related merchandise were chosen on the merits of their sales performance and quality from 2015. Winners were then selected by members of the most critical segment that serves the comic book-buying public — comic book specialty retailers across the United States and worldwide.

 

2015 Diamond Gem Award Suppliers of the Year

2015 Comic Book Publisher of the Year Over 4%:  Image Comics
2015 Comic Book Publisher of the year Under 4%: BOOM! Studios
2015 Backlist Publisher of the year: DC Entertainment
2015 Top Dollar Comic Book Publisher of the Year: Marvel Comics
2015 Manga Publisher of the Year: Viz Media
2015 Game Manufacturer of the Year: Wizards of the Coast
2015 Toy Manufacturer of the Year: Funko

 

2015 Diamond Gem Award Products of the Year

2015 Comic Book of the Year Under $3.00: Paper Girls #1, Image Comics
2015 Comic Book of the Year Over $3.00: Star Wars #1, Marvel Comics
2015 Top Dollar Comic Book of the Year: Star Wars #1, Marvel Comics
2015 Licensed Comic Book of the Year: Rick & Morty #1, Oni Press
2015 Anthology of the Year: Island #1, Image Comics
2015 Best New Comic Book Series: Paper Girls, Image Comics
2015 Best All-Ages Series: Lumberjanes, BOOM! Studios
2015 Original GN of the Year: Batman: Earth One Volume 2 HC, DC Comics from DC Entertainment
2015 Indie GN of the Year: We Can Never Go Home Again, Black Mask Comics
2015 Reprint TP/HC of the Year: The Walking Dead Compendium Volume 3, Image Comics
2015 Licensed TP/HC of the Year: Mad Max: Fury Road TP,  DC Comics from DC Entertainment
2015 Manga TP of the Year: Attack on Titan Volume 16 GN, Kodansha Comics
2015 All-Ages Original/Reprint GN TP of the Year: Lumberjanes TP Volume 1, BOOM! Studios
2015 Magazine of the Year: MAD Magazinefrom DC Entertainment
2015 Trade Book of the Year: Darth Vader & Friends HC,Touchstone Books
2015 Best Free Comic Book Day Book: FCBD 2015 Fight Club/The Goon/The Strain, Dark Horse Comics
2015 Game Product of the Year: Magic: The Gathering TCG 2015 Origins Expansion Deck, Wizards of the Coast
2015 Toy Product of the Year: POP! Guardians of the Galaxy: Dancing Groot Vinyl Figure, Funko
2015 Toy Line of the Year: POP! Figures, Funko
2015 Collectable Statue of the Year: DC Comics Bombshells: The Joker and Harley Quinn Statue, DC Collectibles from DC Entertainment

*****

(Additional Information and Images Available Upon Request)

ABOUT DIAMOND COMIC DISTRIBUTORS (DCD)—Diamond is at the nexus of comics and pop culture. Based in Baltimore, MD, DCD is the world’s largest distributor of English-language comic books, graphic novels, and related pop-culture merchandise, serving thousands of retailers worldwide. For more information, visit Diamond on the web at www.diamondcomics.com.

 

© 2015 Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. All rights reserved. Diamond, the Diamond logo, and PREVIEWS are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Diamond Comic Distributors in the United States and/or other countries.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective copyright owners.

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Review: Invincible #120

Tired of Marvel disrespecting cosmic and talking down to cosmic fans?  Tired of the terrible writing and art in the books Marvel is calling “cosmic” these days?  I’ve got a simple answer for you.  Invincible.

This book just keeps re-inventing itself.  And I mean that in a good way.  The characters change, grow, and mature just as they would in real life.  They are faced with situations every day – both fantastic and mundane – but nevertheless the story is written in such a way as to keep the reader riveted if only because the characters are so appealing.

Sadly, a great warrior and fan favorite character is lost in this issue.  I will miss this character.  But it sets things up nicely for Mark to face the biggest and baddest of the the big bads – King Thragg – in future issues.  Especially since King Thragg is building an army of Viltrumite hybrids.  I think the Invinciverse is going to be in for a rough ride in the near future.

Ottley’s distinctive artistic style is the perfect complement to Kirkman’s outstanding writing.  This book would simply not read the same if not for this team-up of creators, and I hope this team stays together for the next 100 issues of this fine book.

If you’re a cosmic fan, rush out and buy this book.  Reward great quality with high sales.

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Review: Invincible #118

Now here’s a true cosmic comic book.

This issue marks a major change in direction for the Invincible storyline with Mark and Even immigrating to Telescria to begin a new life with their new baby.  This story chronicles their first day on the planet and their catching up with old friends and relatives.  Oliver, now grown, makes a surprise visit and it’s always good to see Alan.

Their new life is not without peril and heartache, though, as you’ll see with Mark’s PTSD symptoms in dealing with his recent rape and with the totally unexpected final page cliffhanger.

Kirkman and Ottley are a writer-artist dream team.  Mark’s story remains as compelling today after 118 issues as it was in Issue #1.  It just goes to show you that Kirkman can break the mold and allow a character to grow, change, and mature over time – and still keep readers interested.  Kirkman can also tell a true cosmic story aimed at adults where the space setting is central.  There is humor, but he doesn’t make his cosmic stories into a farce.  The humor flows naturally.  Marvel could learn a lot by emulating him.

Ottley’s art remains as amazing as ever.  I look forward to his work and can’t wait to see what he renders every issue.

This issue is priced at only .25 cents as it’s aimed at bringing new readers aboard for this new phase of Mark’s life.  So check it out.  Good cosmic comics need to be rewarded and trust me, you’ll be hooked by this one.

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Invincible #118 Only 25 Cents Today

Just a friendly reminder that Invincible #118, from Robert Kirkman, Ryan Ottley and Image Comics, is only 25 cents today at your local comic shop and is actually free via digital download.

You can download the free issue via ImageComics.com.

Info:

Story By: Robert Kirkman
Art By: Ryan Ottley
Art By: Cliff Rathburn
Art By: Jean Francois Beaulieu
Cover By: Ryan Ottley
Cover By: Cliff Rathburn
Cover By: Jean Francois Beaulieu
Cover Price: $0.25
Digital Price: FREE
Diamond ID: JAN150582
Published: March 25, 2015

ONLY TWENTY-FIVE CENTS! FREE IN DIGITAL!

Invincible and Atom Eve set off on the adventure of a lifetime: PARENTHOOD! They’ve taken to the stars and left their troubles on Earth behind them. As things take a drastic turn for our heroes, you’ll find yourself asking…is this book still about superheroes?

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Top Ten Comics For February 2015

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Diamond Comics released their sales charts for February 2015 comic book sales.

We are now starting to see the effect that the geek box subscriptions have on sales as IDW Publishing’s Orphan Black takes the #1 spot overall. More than likely, it would have had a difficult time cracking the top 100.

Marvel then takes the top three spots with two Star Wars titles and Spider-Gwen. DC nabs only two spots.

We see that Star Wars #2 comes in probably still over 100k as it beats out Batman, which is a six figure regular.

I’m still betting Star Wars #2 will have the biggest sales drop ever as it’s first issue sold over 1 million copies, which was in part due to 60 variant covers and geek box subscriptions.

The question, at least for me is, does the geek box subscriptions have any lasting impace on sales? Does it bring in readers? Guess we’ll find out with Oprhan Black #2. I will say that it is nice to see an indie take the #1 spot for the month.

Other thoughts:

Marvel again dominates DC Comics in both dollar share and number of comics sold.

We also see that comic sales are up around 15% from a year prior, which is good news.

It will be interesting to see how DC’s Convergence effects the sales as their events usually do well; plus each comic is priced at $5 bucks a pop.

Marvel is also launching Secret Wars, which the zombies will be sure to chew up.

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Review: The Walking Dead #137

Robert Kirkman has taken us on many trips throughout the series of The Walking Dead. Some have been overtly brutal, encompassing the horror that man can bestow upon one another in heartless, meaningless ways. Some have been more introverted, focusing on the development of the characters as they soul search their way through their world, becoming better or worse for it. He has dealt with death and birth consistently, shocking readers with every turn. This week’s issue will shock you like you have never been shocked before, and I guarantee it will get fans more in a frenzy than the newest episode on AMC!

As Kirkman’s two year jump ahead in time has left several changes and characters (where is Michonne!) up for question, there is one thing that is obvious, little Carl is no longer little! He has not only become a legend in the world of TWD, but he has also become a young man that is trying to find his own place in that world. He is not under the watchful eye of his father anymore and his decisions, like most adolescents, may not always be the best choice. As fans lost their minds after last month’s tale where Carl gave the captive, Lydia, his father’s hat, the most revered item in all of TWD fandom; so too will they be in an uproar over the choice he makes in this issue. It is one that will forever change, not only Carl, but the dynamic of the entire storyline. It puts the tale into a domino effect that will encompass everything.

The second story thread deals with Maggie and the aftermath of Carl’s vicious beating of two boys that attacked him and Sofia. As leader of the Hilltop, Carl’s actions have made her a target and puts her leadership into question. A coup has been brewing but due to Maggie’s focus on interrogating the imprisoned, Lydia, to find out more about the Whisperers, it has gone unnoticed by the rank and file. Underhandedness ensues and by issues end, the future of the Hilltop is in question. 

Another fantastic issue that delves deep into the trappings of youthful foolishness and the ramifications it has. We have all made bad choices due to the fluttering of the heart but in the world of TWD, adolescent fervor can lead to a most deadly outcome! Fantastic issue!

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Top Ten Comic Books For December 2015

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Diamond has released their sales information for the top ten comic books for the month of December.

DC Comics is back on top with Batman #37, which is followed by Dan Slott’s Amazing Spider-Man #11 for Marvel.

Overall, DC has three top ten spots with Marvel taking seven.

Worth a mention might be that there are four titles in the top ten priced at $4.99.

With no big event in December, Marvel and DC are pretty much even when it comes to sales and units sold.

Here are the charts for December:

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Robert Kirkman’s Invincible #118 To Cost A Quarter

Artist Ryan Ottley took to his Facebook page to release the cover to Invincible #118 with mention the issue will cost a quarter.

The tag line on the comic also reads, “We really want you to try this comic, that’s why it’s only 25 cents.”

Invincible #118 should be released in February.

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Invincible:

Mark Grayson is teenage superhero Invincible. He was a normal high school senior with a normal part-time job and otherwise normal life, except his father Nolan is the superhero Omni-Man, the most powerful superhero on the planet. At the age of 17, Mark begins to display superpowers, which come from his father being a member of the Viltrumite race, who, according to Nolan, pioneer the galaxy on a mission of benevolence and enlightenment. As Invincible, Mark begins working as a superhero, with his father acting as his mentor, and meeting other heroes. Mark worked occasionally with a superhero team called the Teen Team (consisting of Robot, Rex Plode, Dupli-Kate and Atom Eve), from there discovering that his Physics teacher has been turning his students into human bombs. He stops his teacher with the help of the heroine, Atom Eve. He also foils a plan to make an army of robots, created by the Mauler Twins. Meanwhile Omni-Man is kidnapped by aliens, taken to another dimension, but returns after what seems to be only a few days, but was actually eight months to him.

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Top 10 Comic Books For October 2014: The Walking Dead On Top

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Diamond Comics has released their early numbers for sales for the month of October where Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead #132 takes the #1 spot of the top ten.

Marvel dominates with seven spots overall to DC Comics’ two, and Marvel wins in both the amount of comics sold and retail share.

Comic book and graphic novels sales are also up in October compared to September, as well as compared to October of 2013.

We see DC pretty much went back to normal following last month’s 3D cover gimmick.

Image Comics also managed to pick up some ground work jumping to over 12% of the comics sold compared to about 8% last month.

Check out the complete charts:

TOP COMIC BOOK PUBLISHERS

RETAIL MARKET SHARE
PUBLISHER SHARE
MARVEL COMICS 34.82%
DC ENTERTAINMENT 27.53%
IMAGE COMICS 9.77%
IDW PUBLISHING 5.18%
DARK HORSE COMICS 4.74%
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT 2.60%
BOOM! STUDIOS 2.39%
ARCHIE COMIC PUBLICATIONS 1.19%
AVATAR PRESS INC 1.18%
EAGLEMOSS PUBLICATIONS LTD 1.17%
OTHER NON-TOP 10 9.43%
 
UNIT MARKET SHARE
PUBLISHER SHARE
MARVEL COMICS 36.35%
DC ENTERTAINMENT 31.00%
IMAGE COMICS 12.28%
IDW PUBLISHING 3.94%
DARK HORSE COMICS 3.25%
BOOM! STUDIOS 2.26%
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT 2.00%
AVATAR PRESS INC 1.25%
ARCHIE COMIC PUBLICATIONS 1.20%
TITAN 1.05%
OTHER NON-TOP 10 5.43%

NEW TITLES SHIPPED

PUBLISHER COMICS SHIPPED GRAPHIC NOVELS SHIPPED MAGAZINES SHIPPED TOTAL SHIPPED
DC ENTERTAINMENT 109 34 1 144
MARVEL COMICS 94 45 1 140
IMAGE COMICS 72 17 0 89
DARK HORSE COMICS 38 34 0 72
IDW PUBLISHING 47 25 0 72
BOOM! STUDIOS 38 9 0 47
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT 38 9 0 47
ARCHIE COMICS 16 5 0 21
AVATAR PRESS 17 2 1 20
TITAN COMICS 9 4 5 18
OTHER NON-TOP10 112 190 48 350

COMPARATIVE SALES STATISTICS

  DOLLARS UNITS
OCTOBER 2014 VS. SEPTEMBER 2014
COMICS 6.30% 9.64%
GRAPHIC NOVELS 21.30% 25.98%
TOTAL COMICS/GN 10.45% 10.69%
OCTOBER 2014 VS. OCTOBER 2013
COMICS 10.84% 10.14%
GRAPHIC NOVELS 12.90% 6.28%
TOTAL COMICS/GN 11.46% 9.85%
YEAR-TO-DATE 2014 VS. YEAR-TO-DATE 2013
COMICS 3.64% -0.66%
GRAPHIC NOVELS 5.31% 5.13%
TOTAL COMICS/GN 4.15% -0.22%

TOP 10 COMIC BOOKS

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 THE WALKING DEAD #132 (MR) $2.99 AUG140566-M IMA
2 DEATH OF WOLVERINE #4 $4.99 JUN140603-M MAR
3 THOR #1 $3.99 AUG140777-M MAR
4 DEATH OF WOLVERINE #3 $4.99 JUN140602-M MAR
5 AVENGERS AND X-MEN: AXIS #1 $4.99 AUG140718-M MAR
6 BATMAN #35 $4.99 AUG140268-M DC
7 AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #7 $3.99 AUG140795-M MAR
8 AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #8 $3.99 AUG140800-M MAR
9 HARLEY QUINN ANNUAL #1 $5.99 AUG140294-M DC
10 AVENGERS AND X-MEN: AXIS #2 $3.99 AUG140728-M MAR

TOP 10 GRAPHIC NOVELS & TRADE PAPERBACKS

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 MS. MARVEL VOLUME 1: NO NORMAL TP $15.99 JUN140725 MAR
2 HAWKEYE VOLUME 3: L.A. WOMAN TP $15.99 MAY140930 MAR
3 BATMAN VOL. 4: ZERO YEAR: SECRET CITY TP (N52) $16.99 JUL140237 DC
4 EAST OF WEST VOLUME 3: THERE IS NO US TP $14.99 JUL140478 IMA
5 BATMAN VOL. 5: ZERO YEAR: DARK CITY HC (N52) $24.99 JUN140264 DC
6 SOUTHERN BASTARDS VOL. 1: HERE WAS A MAN TP (MR) $9.99 JUL140517 IMA
7 HARLEY QUINN VOLUME 1: HOT IN THE CITY HC $24.99 JUN140279 DC
8 AMAZING SPIDER-MAN VOL. 1: THE PARKER LUCK TP $17.99 JUL140726 MAR
9 MOON KNIGHT VOLUME 1: FROM THE DEAD HC $17.99 JUL140728 MAR
10 BATMAN: DEATH OF THE FAMILY BOOK & JOKER MASK SET $39.99 MAY140361 DC

TOP 10 BOOKS

RANK DESCRIPTION PRICE ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 HANSEL & GRETEL HC $16.95 JUL141687 RAN
2 LEGEND OF ZELDA: HYRULE HISTORIA HC $34.99 SEP120055 DAR
3 DOCTOR WHO MAD LIBS $3.99 JUL141663 PUT
4 THE WALKING DEAD BOOK 5: DESCENT HC $25.99 AUG141936 STM
5 PRINCESS MONONOKE: THE FIRST STORY HC $34.99 AUG141763 VIZ
6 UNCANNY X-MEN 100 PROJECT TP $12.99 JUL141291 HER
7 THE SHADOW DOUBLE NOVEL VOL 88 SC $14.95 AUG141926 SAN
8 NEIL GAIMAN: FORTUNATELY THE MILK SC $5.99 JUL141684 HAR
9 BATMAN: A YEAR-BY-YEAR VISUAL CHRONICLE HC $50.00 JUL141641 DK
10 THE WALKING DEAD NOVEL BOOK 4: THE FALL OF THE GOVERNOR PART 2 SC $14.99 AUG141935 STM

TOP 10 TOYS

RANK DESCRIPTION ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 BATMAN BLACK & WHITE: HARLEY QUINN STATUE (SECOND EDITION) MAR140302 DC
2 DC COMICS COVER GIRLS: HARLEY QUINN STATUE (SECOND EDITION) APR140329 DC
3 BATMAN 75TH ANNIVERSARY ACTION FIGURE 4-PACK SET 1 MAY140418 DC
4 BATMAN BLACK & WHITE STATUE: ZOMBIE BATMAN BY NEAL ADAMS APR140318 DC
5 DC COMICS: THE NEW 52: JUSTICE LEAGUE 7-PACK BOX SET NOV138235 DC
6 MARVEL SELECT: DEADPOOL ACTION FIGURE MAR101468 DST
7 GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY: ROCKET RACCOON ARTFX+ STATUE APR142092 KOT
8 DC COMICS ICONS: SUPERMAN 1/6-SCALE STATUE MAR140304 DC
9 ARKHAM ORIGINS: DEATHSTROKE/THE JOKER/COPPERHEAD 3-PACK MAR140311 DC
10 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY: BATMAN ARTFX+ STATUE MAR142128 KOT

TOP 10 GAMES

RANK DESCRIPTION ITEM CODE VENDOR
1 MONOPOLY: THE WALKING DEAD SURVIVAL EDITION OCT128266 USA
2 MARVEL DICE MASTERS: UNCANNY X-MEN JUN142654 NEC
3 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: KHANS OF TARKIR BOOSTER PACKS AUG142826 WIZ
4 RISK: THE WALKING DEAD SURVIVAL EDITION OCT128267 USA
5 DC HEROCLIX: WAR OF LIGHT: ALTERNATE LANTERNS JUN142653 NEC
6 MARVEL DICE MASTERS: UNCANNY X-MEN STARTER SET JUN142655 NEC
7 ADVENTURE TIME CARD WARS PACK 3: PRINCESS BUBBLEGUM VS. LUMPY SPACE PRINCESS JUN142617 CRY
8 DC HEROCLIX: WAR OF LIGHT BOOSTER BRICK WAVE 2 MAY142842 NEC
9 RISK LEGACY JUN118204 HAS
10 MAGIC THE GATHERING TCG: KHANS OF TARKIR FAT PACK AUG142828 WIZ
Dollar Market Shares for October 2014

Dollar Market Share – October 2014

Unit Market Shares for October 2014

Unit Market Share – October 2014

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The Fade Out (#1 & #2) – Alternative Comics Beat

Alt Beat

By Ken Porter

The Fade Out #1 & #2

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Written by: Ed Brubaker

Art by: Sean Phillips

Colors by: Elizabeth Breitweiser

Publisher: Image Comics

Hollywood Horrors

I’m a big fan of murder mysteries and crime drama. The only thing I enjoy more than a good noir is a saucy Hollywood story set in the 1940s. Luckily for me Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Image Comics have delivered just such a tale with The Fade Out. The story focuses on a screenwriter named Charlie who has lost his muse and relies on his drunken and blacklisted pal Gil to write scripts. But when Charlie wakes up one morning at the scene of a horrific crime, he finds that people in his circle have covered up the murder, and he has no idea how he fits into the puzzle.

 

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A Gripping Story

Not only does Philips’ art pull me into this story, but Brubaker’s take on Hollywood murders makes me want to sit and binge watch black and white detective movies. The blend of atmosphere, character, and setting gives this book a lot of life and heart. Even if some of it is ugly and full of venomous truth.

Why It’s a Great Alternative

There’s definitely no supernatural thing going on in The Fade Out. It’s just a gripping crime story and look into the decade through the lens of a screenwriter trying to make it in L.A. It seems like so many comics rely on a science fiction or supernatural twist that sometimes it can be a bit exhausting. It’s good to know that there’s still room for stories that just have compelling characters without unnatural abilities or circumstances.

Don’t get me wrong, I love science fiction and the supernatural as much as anybody (sometimes too much), but it’s nice to get a story that wants to exist outside that bubble in comics.

 

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Who Would Like The Fade Out?

Fans of Brubaker and Phillips’ Criminal are an obvious choice. I also think that fans of shows like Mad Men would enjoy the time period and the interactions with the characters. If you’ve been reading series like Satellite Sam or enjoy murder mysteries then this is a comic book you don’t want to miss. The extras in the back of each issue alone are worth checking out, not to mention the fantastic covers we’ve gotten so far.

Ken Porter also writes comic books including “Ink Ribbon” from Visionary Comics. Ken was also the winner of last year’s Top Cow Talent Search contest and was recently published in “Artifacts” #33.