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Harley Quinn Movies Every Year & Paul Dini Rumored

It’s no secret that DC and WB are expanding their use of Harley Quinn as spinoff movies are in the works and an animated series is coming to the DC Universe digital streaming service. On the movie side of things, presently in development is the Margot Robbie Harley Quinn Birds of Prey movie, with other …

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DC Comics Vertigo Releasing Paul Dini Batman Graphic Novel

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Today, DC Entertainment’s creator-driven imprint, Vertigo, announced Dark Night: A True Batman Story, from legendary writer Paul Dini (Batman: The Animated Series, Batman Beyond, Lost) set to release in June 2016. The story is a harrowing and eloquent autobiographical tale of Dini’s courageous struggle to overcome a truly desperate situation, with brilliant illustrations by Eduardo Risso (100 Bullets). 

An extremely personal story for Dini – and the first time he’s told it to the world – the book focuses on a night that he was assaulted and brutally beaten by strangers and left on the sidewalk. In this surprising original graphic novel, Batman is seen in a new light – not as the grim avenger of the night, but as a savior who helps a discouraged man recover from a brutal attack that left him unable to face the world. But despite how bleak his circumstances were, or perhaps because of it, Dini always imagined the Batman at his side, urging him along during his darkest moments.

“Batman is a character truly universal in his ability to entertain and inspire fans of all ages and backgrounds. As a writer of Batman stories for comics, video games and animation, I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to contribute to that legacy. But there was a time some years ago when I found myself the victim of a violent attack and the last thing that made sense to me was to continue writing stories about a fantasy crime fighter. Struggling to recover, I found myself trapped in a dark place of isolation and abuse, plagued by demons both real and imaginary, with my only choices being to remain a victim or to stand up and fight back. Not so easy as the enemy I was fighting was my own fear,” explained writer Paul Dini.

“I must admit that this is not the kind of story I typically draw; it was undoubtedly a new challenge in my career,” added artist Eduardo Risso. “This novel gave me the opportunity to do something different with the graphic narrative. I didn’t have any idea about what aesthetic to use, but I was sure that I didn’t want to do the same thing I was used to doing. I hope you like it.”

Dini continued, “DC and Vertigo have given me the unique opportunity to tell this personal story, rendered better than I could have dreamed by the powerful artwork of Eduardo Risso. It is my hope  that Dark Night: A True Batman Story will both provide an interesting window into a writer’s mind in a time of crisis, and perhaps inspire other victims of violence to search for the heroes inside themselves.” 

Dark Night: A True Batman Story will be available in comic book shops on June 15, 2016 and available everywhere books are sold on June 21, 2016.

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Alternative Comics Beat: Black Canary and Zatanna: Bloodspell

Alt Beat

By Ken Porter

 

Black Canary and Zatanna are two of my favorite superheroines. Even before reading this new original graphic novel by Paul Dini, I would have listed them in my top ten or twenty favorite superheroes. Not just including female characters, but heroes of both genders. And let’s be honest, there are a lot of superheroes in the Marvel and DC cannon.

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Black Canary & Zatanna: Bloodspell is an OGN that tells a new origin story for the friendship that the two heroes share and pits them against the spirit of a powerful witch that Canary encountered a year before. Now a bloodspell threatens Canary’s life, and Zatanna Zatarra is the only magician in the DCU powerful enough to step in and tango with the powerful poltergeist.

This OGN is written by Paul Dini and drawn by Joe Quinones. Dini is one of my favorite DC Comics writers, and I’ve been enjoying his work since my early days watching Batman: The Animated Series. Quinones has a fantastic art style that captures the classic feel of the characters and makes every page a delight. Reading these characters on the page feels like that same lightning in a bottle has been captured and put in panels as the two characters share adventure and danger together against a powerful foe. And the combination of Dini and Quinones really drives that home.

Just look at some of the cover concepts that Quinones threw up on his blog a while back:

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Fantastic stuff.

Wait… Why is this an alternative from the norm?

I get this quite a bit when I pick a Marvel or DC book for the Alternative Comics Beat. While I did start this article with the intent of recommending books that were outside the normal superhero fare, sometimes there are gems that the general public might overlook. That’s when the capes and masks take a step back into the Alt Beat spotlight and convince me that they have to be read by people who enjoy this column.

The DC Universe before The New 52

I hate to be one of those guys, but I do miss the old DC Universe. Not that it was the “original” version of the shared space for Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and even the characters in this OGN. But I do miss the history that The New 52 doesn’t provide and the legacy that those versions of the characters had.

Dini’s story takes me back to the place I grew up reading about characters like Canary and Zatanna, and while I admit I’m a nostalgia nut I still think that there’s gold to be mined from that era. I’m just hoping this brings more out-of-continuity stories into the spotlight.

Who would enjoy this OGN?

Readers who love classic DC Universe stories that are a little more on the lighthearted side will love this OGN. It has a lot of charm that the Bruce Timm animated shows have, but with a little more edge and sassy moments that Dini gives the heroines in order to stretch and be themselves. It gives the characters the chance to shine without the confines of a twenty minute episode. If continuity and issue numbers aren’t your thing, then this tale of magic, action, and intrigue is right up your alley.

Ken Porter is presently interning with Cosmic Book News and 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.

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No Paul Dini & Joker For Batman: Arkham Knight

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The new next-gen Batman: Arkham Knight video game from Rocksteady studios will not see either Paul Dini or The Joker.

Both have been a staple to the franchise since its beginning.

Game Informer does note that RockSteady will still be using Geoff Johns as a consultant with Game director Sefton Hill leading the writing team. Senior script writer Martin Lancaster (CrysisKillzone) is on board as well.

Regarding The Joker, a rep offered:

“One thing we really wanted to respect was the events of Arkham City. We didn’t want to kind of kill Joker at the end and then say ‘Oh, that was a cheap shot, but here he is not really dead and bring him back.’ He is dead. Yes. We wanted it to feel like what happens when Joker dies. What does that create in this universe. And it creates this kind of power vacuum [the super villains realize that working together is better without Joker].”

Batman: Arkham Knight introduces Rocksteady’s uniquely designed version of the Batmobile, which is drivable for the first time in the franchise. The addition of this legendary vehicle, combined with the acclaimed gameplay of the Batman Arkham series, offers gamers the ultimate and complete Batman experience as they tear through the streets and soar across the skyline of the entirety of Gotham City.

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Geoff Johns Talks Suicide Squad and Superman Video Games

Geoff Johns, DC Entertainment Chief Creative Officer, recently talked about the Suicide Squad video game that was announced back in 2010, and that it is in development.

“We’re working on Suicide Squad; it’s in development right now,” Johns told Kataku.com. “I’m really super excited about it. Because of the concept, you have a game where any of the lead characters can conceivably die and it’s not a stunt. Some really cool story could come out of that.”

The Suicide Squad comic book is part of the DC Comics reboot as one of the “New 52” written by Adam Glass. The current team is comprised of incarcerated supervillains who work for the Government undertaking various high risk missions in exchange for lighter sentences. Suffice to say, members are dropping left and right!

Previously, Johns described the game as â€œhardcore violent” at the 2010 San Diego Comic Con.

Johns also briefly mentions a new video game for the Man of Steel. There is a current rumor, of sorts, that Batman: Arkham City writer Paul Dini may be undertaking a new Superman video game, as Dini has mentioned Supes is on his want list of characters to do.

Johns mentions how Superman is always thought about, but finding the right story and studio is key to the character.

“We talk about it a lot, about how flipping up robots for four hours would get old.” Johns said. “I think all games come down to gameplay and the right studio. I’m sure the right studio could crack it. Rocksteady has a real passion for Batman, and I think that’s why they make a great game.”

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2011 VGAs: Joker’s Acceptance Speech Reveals Batman: Arkham World (Video)

Is the next Batman: Arkham game called “Arkham World?” Check out the Joker’s acceptance speech for Best Chararacter at the 2011 Video Game Awards. As we see the Joker toss the “script” aside, could this be a reference to the fact that Arkham City writer Paul Dini stated he wanted to do another DC Comics …

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