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The Avengers Sequel Has A Plot Already, SHIELD Showrunners Classified

The Avengers Sequel Has A Plot Already, SHIELD Showrunners Classified | Comic Books |

In the case of most films, with most writers and most directors, this wouldn’t necessarily be such a big deal – but here we’re talking about the second Avengers picture as plotted out and to be directed by Joss Whedon.

In a new interview with EW, word breaks that Whedon has:

submitted an outline for the 2015 sequel The Avengers.

Glad to see we’re not the only ones who leave out the odd little word here and.

One implication of the Avengers sequel getting an outline is that it suggests the whole of Marvel’s movie universe phase 2 has some sort of shape now. Iron Man 3 promises to be rather untangled from the bigger picture, and neither that movie nor Thor 2 will feature an appearance from Nick Fury. He will be back for the Captain America sequel, however, alongside some other SHIELD types, so don’t expect this next wave to be just a series of standalones. Not entirely.

Next up for Whedon is filming his SHIELD pilot. EW note that:

If ABC he picks up the series, Whedon will remain involved as exec producer, and frequent collaborators Jed Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen and Jeffrey Bell will serve as lead showrunners.

Which I think is a slight modification of the previous assumption? Call it a clarification at the very least.

You likely want to read the whole thing - it’s essentially Whedon’s reflection on how well 2012 went.

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Video Trailer: Avengers #1 by Jonathan Hickman and Jerome Opena

Video Trailer: Avengers #1 by Jonathan Hickman and Jerome Opena | Comic Books |

Tomorrow, Marvel publish Avengers #1 by Jonathan Hickman and Jerome Opena. It looks like it might be rather good. Here’s a video preview… including the first few scenes of the comic in motion form,

Marvel is pleased to present your first look at Avengers #1, kicking off the all-new ongoing series from the blockbuster creative team of writer Jonathan Hickman, artist Jerome Opena and colorist Dean White! The greatest heroes in comics together on one unbeatable team! Now shipping twice a month, the Avengers “go large,” expanding their roster and their sphere of influence to a global and even interplanetary level. When Captain America puts out his call – who will answer? Big threats, big ideas, big idealism – these are the Avengers NOW!

An all-new direction! All-new threats! This is Avengers NOW!

This December, Jonathan Hickman and Jerome Opena redefine what it means to be Earth’s Mightiest in Avengers #1!

AVENGERS #1 (SEP120526)



Colors by DEAN WHITE



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Parting Shot: This 'Calvin and Hobbes' Search Engine Is The Reason The Internet Exists

Parting Shot: This 'Calvin and Hobbes' Search Engine Is The Reason The Internet Exists | Comic Books |

Like The Simpsons is for so many of us, Calvin and Hobbes has for years been a source that I can almost always reference, no matter the situation, in a way that's somehow germane to the topic at hand. After more than a decade of daily and brilliant content, Bill Watterson's timeless strip grew to be a seemingly endless provenance of hilarious, random, absurd, touching and thought provoking reference. Now, thanks to the efforts of one fan, there's a place to go to instantly look up any and every topic Calvin and Hobbes ever covered, even tangentially. And just like that, the internet has finally fulfilled its one true purpose

Created by Michael Yingling (whose nickname is apparently Bing) the Calvin and Hobbes search engine is pretty much exactly what you'd hope. Simply enter any term and it instantly gives you every strip that phrase ever appeared in, along with the strips release date and every compilation each one has ever appeared in. Basically, this thing is going to revolutionize how I obnoxiously reference C&H to friends who aren't at all familiar with it.

So the next time someone threatens to clean your clock if you knock their smock, and you think "Wait, I think I know where that's from", you can get your answer immediately, no matter where you are. It's a beautiful thing.

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Hickman & Opena's 'Avengers' #1 Is Big, Cool, and Gorgeous [Spoiler-Free Review]

Hickman & Opena's 'Avengers' #1 Is Big, Cool, and Gorgeous [Spoiler-Free Review] | Comic Books |

Out this week is the first issue of Jonathan Hickman's obviously meticulously planned and apparently very lengthy run on Marvel's Avengers franchise. Avengers #1 -- by Hickman (Fantastic Four/FF, The Manhattan Projects) with art from Jerome Opeña (Uncanny X-Force, Fear Agent, Punisher) and colors by Dean White (Uncanny X-Force, Captain America) -- can perhaps be best summed up in one word: big. Okay, two words: big and expanding. It starts with a monologue and montage establishing the huge scope of the events to come and from there shows the inception of the idea for, and the reasoning behind, the expansion of the Avengers.

If you're a fan of any of these creators, like I am, you're probably very predisposed to liking this book. But let's give it a more thorough look anyway.

Considering my established proclivity for enjoying Hickman's writing and how much I've admired Opeña's artwork over the years, from Fear Agent to Uncanny X-Force -- not to mention my adoration for Dean White, the most visually striking and transformative colorist in the Big Two business right now -- whether I liked this book was probably a foregone conclusion, so, spoiler alert: it's a pretty damn boss comic, and basically exactly what I wanted (and expected), tonally, from Jonathan Hickman taking over the Avengers. It's bright, bold, brash, bleeding-edge superhero comics. So let's focus on something different: instead of "is it any good?" (duh), let's look at what it is, where it fits in the spectrum of the Avengers publishing history and Hickman's own oeuvre, and why I enjoyed it so damn much.

From the first issue, if what you're looking for is a focus on character relationships, banter, and general chilling out -- the very successful Brian Michael Bendis formula of throwing a bunch of dynamic personalities in a room and seeing what happens -- you might be better off with Kelly Sue DeConnick's also very good Avengers Assemble series, which tickles that itch ignited by Bendis and engulfed by Whedon in the Marvel Studios movie where, honestly, you could sit there and read Banner and Stark sniping at each other all day while Spider-Man and Wolverine talk about what's on television. While Hickman's Avengers certainly takes its cues from the movie as well -- the new "core team" is the Big Six from the film, even though Hulk's historically been an Avenger for something like fifteen minutes in the Marvel Universe -- it's about spiraling outward, both literally and metaphorically (Also a graphic designer, Hickman makes this pretty explicit with his trademark infographics).

(It seems like an ironic joke that this book, with its apparently [outside of the Big Six] quite diverse cast and scads of new heroes and villains, is Avengers while the upcoming book titled New Avengers features a bunch of old, mostly white [T'Challa's royalty so he's 1% as hell] dudes who've been part of the Marvel Universe since the beginning. I suspect this irony is intentional.)

(click to enlarge)

So what is this first issue of Avengers, then, now that I've established what it's not? Like many of the most successful Marvel NOW! relaunches, especially Rick Remender and John Romita, Jr.'s very promising Captain America, Avengers follows up a long, legendary run not by modifying or tweaking the formula that's worked for so long, but by throwing it out completely and building something new. Hickman's Avengers, at least from this initial installment, is a very plot-driven, big-ideas superhero comic -- definitely more Grant Morrison than Keith Giffen/J.M. DeMatteis, if you will. However, there's also a Legion of Super-Heroes bent in the gigantic, dissimilar cast that's clearly meant, both in- and out-of-story, to be a conscious response to the Avengers as an old boys' club; an attempt to create something far more representative of the diversity of humanity and the other sentient species that hang out on Earth in the Marvel Universe.

While the book is certainly more plot-based than the run it's succeeding, that also doesn't mean that the characters are devoid of personality, either -- much like Morrison (the comparison is frankly inescapable), Hickman's become excellent at the economical characterization, the two- or three-panel beat that drills down to, and exposes, the character's essence. The villains in this first issue are new, and Hickman continues to be able to write Kirby-esque unknowable gods and alien overlords with a whimsical bent, making them quirky and identifiable by personality rather than boilerplate "Begone from here, heroes!" cookie-cutter overlords.

And the art, well, there's almost nothing to say here other than that it's gorgeous. It's Opeña and White, what do you expect? The storytelling is very clear, concise horizontal panels in a cinematic style -- no Steranko influence here -- but that's made up for by a cornucopia of weird designs, psychedelic coloring choices and stuff blowing up to remind you you're reading a comic book, by gum.

(click to enlarge)

So basically, it's not about who I'd recommend this comic to -- it's about who I wouldn't. If you're interested in seeing characters play off of and rub against each other, to see more like the movie where the plot is basically an excuse to see Steve and Tony act like a bickering old married couple, then judging by just this first issue, Avengers might not be for you. If you want to see world-ending threats, crazy concepts, and wild ideas; gorgeous artwork; deft characterization; and really big dudes punching each other in the face, this could be -- and most likely will be, judging by Hickman's track record so far -- the start of something really cool.

Avengers #1 goes on sale this Wednesday in comics shops and digitally from ComiXology.

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Archie Comics Begins Settlement Negotiations With Ken Penders

Archie Comics Begins Settlement Negotiations With Ken Penders | Comic Books |

Three years ago, comic book writer Ken Penders began a series of legal actions against Archie Comics and Sega for the exploitation of characters he created for the Sonic comic, in other comics, games and cartoons which, he stated, he had never agreed to sell to the company.

Archie Comics and Sega fought back claiming hat such charges were without merit. Indeed, at one point, stated that it had gone away completely. However, other similar cases seemed to suggest that Archie’s paperwork wasn’t exactly watertight and they may have dropped the ball on this one.

According to TSSZ News, which has acted an an unofficial mourthpiece for Penders for a number of years, has just reported that

"A letter filed by Collen IP partner Joshua Paul dated Friday, November 30th, claims in part that, on the previous day, the two parties came to terms after a mediation session:

[....] at a mediation session held yesterday, the parties reached agreement on the terms of settlement. The principals and counsel have signed a Term Sheet re’flecting the core terms of settlement. As a next step, the parties must prepare and sign a settlement agreement that will implement the outline of settlement contained in the Term Sheet. We anticipate that the process may take several weeks."

This however will not affect other suits from other creators forsimilar reasons, or Penders’ actions against Sega. If anything, it might strengthen them.

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So What The Hell Is Going On At DC Right Now?

So What The Hell Is Going On At DC Right Now? | Comic Books |

At DC Comics today, they’ve been holding individual meetings with staff members, and are about to start a general meeting for everyone.

I haven’t heard a peep about what’s actually happening or being said.

I have been assured that we’re not talking redundancies, and I’m told that settled a few nervous flutters this morning. I know that there were other meetings yesterday but that the top heads are happier about what’s going to be announced today. But it could be anything.

Karen Berger‘s resignation yesterday does seem linked, which has caused some wags to suggest that it’s a full blown exodus to Burbank, the kind of move that Berger wouldn’t countenance. This would depend of course on whether of not the DC archive has been thoroughly documented – it was this that caused much of DC to remain in New York during the big reorganisation a few years ago. And it might explain discussion about increasing efficiencies at DC…

There’s been a suggestion that Diane Nelson may have moved on at Warners, while waiting for her bosses to finish their jousting for top position. And this is the big news.

The third suggestion is that something radical is happening to publishing policy, involving a major jump from print to digital, with all sorts of new opportunities.

But this is all mindless speculation, none of it is based in fact, and the other thing that people seem to know right now, is that they know nothing.

Socrates would be so proud.

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DC Comics Villains Month: The Prankster In Nightwing

DC Comics Villains Month: The Prankster In Nightwing | Comic Books |

Bleeding Cool has been talking about the upcoming Villains Month from DC, where all the DC titles will introduce or reintroduce a villain to the New DCU.

We pretty much know that Batman, by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo, is getting the Riddler as part of an Early Days Of Batman story, but what about the other titles?

I understand that Nightwing is getting Superman villain The Prankster.

Originally introduced in 1942, he commits crimes via practical jokes. He was reinvented in the eighties as an embittered children’s TV presenter, before becoming a more serious and unpredictable threat, working for Lord Satanus, and then Lex Luthor, and becomes a distraction-for-hire for super villain plots, offering discount for those that involve Superman…

Could this explain what on earth he’ll be doing in Gotham?

He’s also been appearing in the Smallville comic book.

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Karen Berger Steps Down From DC Comics

Karen Berger Steps Down From DC Comics | Comic Books |

Three quarters of an hour ago I informed DC Comics that I was planning to run a story about rumours of impending redundancies/resignations at the publisher.

Coincidentally or not, they immediately issued a press release announcing that Karen Berger, Executive Editor of DC Vertigo and Senior VP at DC Comics, was stepping down after twenty years at the company.

Karen Berger leaving DC has been a repeated rumour I’ve heard, and mentioned, since the summer. Arguably responsible for many of DC’s biggest successes, working with Alan Moore on Swamp Thing, recruiting the likes of Grant Morrison, Neil Gaiman, Garth Ennis, Jamie Delano, Mark Buckingham, Peter Milligan, Mike Carey, China Mieville and so many more DC Comics, with successes such as Sandman, Preacher, Invisibles, Fables and Hellblazer on her watch, since the big changes at DC that have happened in the last few years, has seen the Vertigo line shrunk, its contracts curtailed, its graphic novel line pulled back, its major characters passed to the DCU editorial team, her husband made redundant and herself effectively demoted, reporting to Editor In Chief Bob Harras rather than directly to the President and Publisher.

It is likely that any such departure will have involved a very large payoff indeed. Some have speculated that if Karen Berger did leave DC Comics, she has so much warmth owed to her by so many that she could with very little effort, set up a New York based publishing boutique of her very own, filled with very bankable writers and artists.

But that’s for another day. Karen Berger changed the perception of what mainstream comics could be, developed work that found a truly mainstream audience and deserved the respect she gained in the comics industry. She leaves a rather large gap at DC Comics, both in terms of the work published and in the very creative soul of the publisher.

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Dane DeHaan Is Harry Osborn – They Went Moody Mode, Not Jock

Dane DeHaan Is Harry Osborn – They Went Moody Mode, Not Jock | Comic Books |

A couple of weeks back it looked like Marc Webb, Sony and the Spider-Man team hadn’t made up their mind what kind of Harry Osborn they wanted. Now, they seem very sure.

Deadline are reporting that Dane DeHaan has the role. This means they’re going for the “dark and edgy” option, rather than “big and beefy.”

DeHaan was very good in Chronicle and did just fine in Lawless. I’m sure he’ll make a great best-friend-cum-nemesis for Andrew Garfield.

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Justice League Movie Villain Revealed?

Justice League Movie Villain Revealed? | Comic Books |

Marvel’s The Avengers argued that it would take a particularly large threat to motivated the cooperation of several super-powered individuals in their defense efforts, and it seems that Warner Bros. are applying the same logic to Justice League.

Though the film has yet to secure a director, most likely hasn’t cast a single role – returning Superman aside? – and could be months away from production, the script has been drafted for a while. Long enough, it seems, for significant details to leak.

Latino Review don’t have many specifics to tell us just yet, but they are reporting the identity of the film’s villain. According to their story, Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and company will all be coming together to face off against Darkseid.

I understand that the character was Jack Kirby’s cosmic interpretation of Hitler. That’s what I call starting big.

Once Justice League is thought of on this scale, any mesh with Chris Nolan’s Batmovies seems a little less likely. It certainly makes the casting of Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a post Dark Knight Rises Batman-Nightwing-Whatever a little harder to expect.

On the other hand, it also promises scale and, if handled in a particular way, a real sense of doom, threat and even a deeper, tragic dimension.

As far as I can see, Darkseid and Marvel’s Thanos seem like pretty similar characters – at least as far as the big two’s “Rogues Galleries” go. Will these Justice League plans see both reaching the silver screen in 2015? Have Warner Bros. inadvertently doomed themselves to looking like a bit of a rip off?

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Gail Simone – “I Have Not Left Batgirl”

Gail Simone – “I Have Not Left Batgirl” | Comic Books |

Today, on her message board, Gail Simone replied to the rumours we’ve been reporting that she may be leaving the Batgirl title.

She simply stated;

I have not left Batgirl.

Which is pretty cut and dry and far more than she was saying when I put the matter to her earlier in the week. There’s always the get out clause she could use “I didn’t leave, I was pushed” but that smacks of equivocation. Certainly a number DC people earlier in the week definitely believed that Gail Simone had walked off the book. It’s possible that whatever may have let to that state of affairs, then changed. Even the reaction to the publication of the original article may have had an affect.

And I hope so, I rather enjoy Gail’s work on the title.

However, regarding the veracity of rumours regarding the other titles, look to March’s DC solicitations – a writer change on Birds Of Prey may be your first confirmatory sign that “something is up”…

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The Swedish Invasion Of Comics Continues

The Swedish Invasion Of Comics Continues | Comic Books |

The American comics industry is very aware of the British invasion of comics that began in the late 1970s, and in the 1980s saw the greatest qualification to write a comic as having an English accent. There was also a South American invasion, initially because of lower prices, with teams of artists imitating and improving upon American styles. There was even a mini-Canadian boom at one point.

But what about the Swedish invasion of the American comics industry?

The three separate adaptations of The Millenium Trilogy in the US, France and Japan might be an easy way in – even though not one Swede will be working on it.

Batman saw its first Swedish artist this year, Henrik Jonsson, in Detective Comics #0.

I’ve played my part, with Simon Rohrmuller drawing my Watchmensch comic for Brain Scan, and The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne in Dark Horse Presents (new series next year folks!)

There’s the Swedish Invasion at Top Shelf, who have really spearheaded this approach.

"The alliance between the Swedish and American alternative comics scenes will reach historic levels this year with our campaign to introduce several talented Swedish cartoonists and their unique graphic novels (including Mats Jonsson’s Hey Princess, Simon Gardenfors’ The 120 Days Of Simon, Kolbeinn Karlsson’s The Troll King, and Niklas Asker’s Second Thoughts), as well as a terrific Swedish anthology, From the Shadow of the Northern Lights, and Swedish Comics History by international comics scholar Fredrik Strömberg! Check out all the titles below, and let’s be sure to welcome all of these great creators into our community. … Also, we should send out a special thanks to Johannes Klenell, the Publisher of Galago, in Sweden, who’s helped facilitate the start of this long-term relationship. Thanks, Johannes!"

At 215INK, there’s Blue Moth by Rolf Lejdegård

The Portent at Image was drawn by Peter Bergting, who is continuing that project in Sweden.

Mikael Bergkvist‘s Shadow Falls is being published by Ardden.

The Swedish superhero-project “Svenska superserier” is also creating comics for the USA.

There’s the giant-sized Wolalina project for Ape, created by Daniel Karhunen. There are TWO comic book versions of it, one French and one American – but none from Sweden.

And of course, not forgetting…

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First Details Of Scenes Featured In Amazon, The New Wonder Woman Pilot

First Details Of Scenes Featured In Amazon, The New Wonder Woman Pilot | Comic Books |

Back when David E. Kelley was working on his Wonder Woman pilot we got a hold of the script and learned about a scene that would soon become infamous.

Kelley wrote a sleepover scene in which Diana put on her PJs, gorged on ice cream and had a heart to heart with her best friend, Myndi.

It wasn’t a scene that pleased her long-standing comic book fans too much.

So as details start to break regarding a new Wonder Woman show, with different creatives, for a different network, the last thing you’d expect is another controversial “ice cream” scene.

Well… Er… I don’t really know how to break this to the internet.

A few friends of Bleeding Cool, including Wonder Woman TV, have their hands on audition sides for the show. These pages detail two scenes that the candidate actresses will be asked to perform when they come in to test.

One of the scenes is completely and totally about ice cream, and how amazing it is.

This was hinted at in the official blurb, but it seems to be an entire scene of the pilot script: when Diana first tastes ice cream, it blows her mind.

You know, personally, I can kind of swing with this. Evil forces conspired to keep ice cream out of my life for a few months and when I got back to it, the ensuing emotional explosion was quite like something from an American TV drama.

So, by episode four we can expect Diana to weigh 250 pounds, right? I mean, you’ve got to follow your concepts through, and if she’s really this into ice cream…

The other scene takes place on Diana’s home island, and reveals an early encounter with Steve Trevor, the pilot who lands there and makes her aware of the larger world beyond her shores. It’s a kind of interrogation scene, with Diana once again getting her mind mashed in by crazy details of those odd off-island people and what they get up to.

There’s apparently little joshing about her tying him to a chair, and the scene appears to be written with an eye on stirring up sexual chemistry between the characters – just a little.

It seems that Amazon will go ahead if Warner Bros. TV and the CW are confident they’ve found the right girl – tall, handy with a lasso, really loves ice cream and not scared of flying. Could it be you?

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Was This The First Mention Of The Ultron War?

Was This The First Mention Of The Ultron War? | Comic Books |

From 2010, in a trailer for Avengers #7… is this the first proper idea of what was coming?

Of course, back then, it was meant to have happened this past summer…

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The Walking Dead's Tyreese "has a hammer, and he knows how to use it," promises Chad L. Coleman

The Walking Dead's Tyreese "has a hammer, and he knows how to use it," promises Chad L. Coleman | Comic Books |

To the delight of Walking Dead fans everywhere, Chad L. Coleman appeared in the winter finale as comic book favorite Tyreese. With a calm demeanor and a cool head, we watched Tyreese lead this new pack of survivors to safety. Tyreese is going to face some major challenges in the next few episodes, but don't worry — according to Coleman, "The man has a hammer and he knows how to use it."
We spoke with Coleman in a recent phone conference where the actor tackled just about every question he could without giving away too much. But what we do know for sure is that there are only eight episodes of Walking Dead season three left, and Coleman has promised he'll be in five of the eight remaining episodes. Take that any way you want.

How the TV Tyreese will differ from the comic book Tyreese?

Chad L. Coleman: I'm not an inside-out student of the graphic novel. When I came on board I was told if we need to reference it, and this is in no way to diminish it. But the experience I'm having with the show is, just ride it out with us script for script. The humanity of the man is very much akin to what was done in the graphic novel. I believe his lack of skills as a rifleman is very much part of it. His desire to protect, his desire to abstain from egregious violence, his humanity, his strong sense of family, those are things that are resonating for me in playing this role.

How did Coleman got involved with The Walking Dead?

For the most part the story that I get was that Robert Kirkman was a huge fan of The Wire and the character that I played on The Wire, that was the origin for me.

Tyreese and Rick BFF 4 EVA, still?

That's a dangerous question. All I can say is that forces collide on the same level. That's what I will say. [On his relationship with Michonne] I could not give you one iota about that. That is a cliffhanger to the third power. There is much that will surprise me as it will surprise you. But that's the pedigree of the show. It's gonna be juicy and awesome for all parties involved.

Did you know Tyreese was a fan favorite before you got the part?

Yeah as soon as I went online. As soon as I pulled it up, that's the icing on the cake. I've created an original role before, but to have something that was already present in another form. And to have to honor it... that's huge for me, that's my desire. To make the audience proud of what's happening in the television world of the Walking Dead.

How the Walking Dead compares to The Wire

Well, the differences right away are in the whole horror/zombie aspect. There's the technical aspect of it, what's done in post and the digital stuff, ways to position your body, things of that nature in order for the audience to experience what you're experiencing in that very real way. It's far more physical, even though I was training in the gym [for The Wire], I still found myself more winded than I was with The Wire . Not to say I'm out of shape! But it's a lot more physical... The similarities are in the intelligence, the creativity and the passion of the actors and creators of the show, that's the same. Sonequa [Martin-Green] who plays Sasha, she [says], 'Chad I'm tired of hearing how this reminds you of The Wire.' But I say this in, these are flagship shows to me that speak to the level of artistic integrity all actors pine for.

Thoughts on Walking Dead's habit of killing off African-American characters.

I have a very dear friend who I think is very much leading the online charge... I can't say anything there, but slow down, be easy, you're gonna be incredibly proud. [Exec. Producer] Glen Mazzara and all of these folks have the highest of integrity and character. We matter as much as anyone else, you're gonna see that played out on the show. I don't think there's any kind of agenda on their parts, it's just how storytelling unfolds sometimes. You guys are going to be incredibly proud of Tyreese and Michonne and Sasha. You're gonna be so satisfied.

How much are we going to get to explore Tyrese backstory? Are we going to explore his football history? He's a famous football player, will people remember him?

That I don't know... There's back history between my character and Daniel [Thomas May] who plays the character Allen [who was introduced on Monday]. And boy, was that an amazing day. So yeah I love that kind of love [the background] stuff. It just sweetens the pot.

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Adam Thompson Tours The DC Universe With The JLA On A Minimalist Poster Series

Adam Thompson Tours The DC Universe With The JLA On A Minimalist Poster Series | Comic Books |

While DC Collectibles has been promoting the home cities of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and others, after a fashion, with a line of travel posters, Adam Thompson has gone one better by taking fans on a tour of the Justice League's respective bases of operations with an interlocking poster series spanning Metropolis, Gotham City, Atlantis, Themyscira, Oa and more. The assembled image trails off a bit once it hits the Flash and Green Arrow, who are more or less adventuring outside Central City or Keystone City or Star City, but it's still nice to see the lineup present and accounted for across multiple locations. If DCU geography isn't quite your thing, the artist is also adept at donning the Batman family in motorcycle jackets and other stylized attire that seems suited for cosplay conversion. You can see Thompson's poster handiwork past the cut, along with even more of his work at his online portfolio.

Click Through to See the Images



Wonder Woman

Aqua Man

Green Lantern


Green Arrow

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Explaining The Value Of A Little-Known Drug To Mass Audiences? Get Me A Comic Book Artist, Stat!

Explaining The Value Of A Little-Known Drug To Mass Audiences? Get Me A Comic Book Artist, Stat! | Comic Books |

Throughout the years, comic books have been used to teach people about everything from the benefits of the Social Security system to the history of the Cup Noodle. Now, a British doctor is using the medium to introduce the world - and especially his medical profession colleagues - to a drug that could prevent tens of thousands of trauma patients from bleeding to death every year.

Dr. Ian Roberts has been a believer in a drug called tranexamic acid (TXA) that improves blood clotting for some time, and he has scientific evidence to back up his faith; a 2005 study he launched demonstrated that patients who received the drug within three hours of suffering a traumatic injury were "significantly less likely" to bleed to death than those who didn't. Despite the study's results, however, there hasn't been a massive rush to use TXA in everyday medical practice, even in casualty or trauma circumstances.

"You can find something that's true, publish it in [medical journal] The Lancet, wash your hands of it, and say, 'Well that's that,' but that doesn't seem very responsible. Getting research into practice takes a long time," Roberts explained. "Science is very good at finding the answer to whether a treatment works, but it's very bad at helping you to remember that that treatment is effective. What people remember are stories - emotional stories."

And so Roberts turned to artist Emma Vieceli to create a comic book that would show TXA in use following a bomb explosion, with fictional doctors demonstrating its importance in a way that a dry study could never quite manage. However, Vieceli and Roberts didn't stop there when it came to upping the appeal of TXA: "We also tried to make doctors giving tranexamic acid look sexier than doctors [who didn't]," Roberts admitted.

Click through to see the comic

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A Day Of Meetings At DC Comics

A Day Of Meetings At DC Comics | Comic Books |

If you are a comics creator, trying to get in touch with your DC editor, today might not be the best day to try and do so.

I am told that today, at its 1700 Broadway offices, there will be a series of meetings at DC Comics, first individually with many employees, and then a group meeting with all employees in the afternoon to outline DC’s new plan.

All I’ve been told is that this involves efficiency measures as a result of monitoring since April this year.

Now this is the kind of thing that could lead to redundancies, and does bears some similarity to the events during DC’s big reorganisation a few years ago, but I have been assured by DC Publicity that “DC has no plans to announce any redundancies”.

So there’s that.

Whether this involves a further move to Burbank, a move down the street, a change in publishing priorities, an end to Vertigo, the elevation of Jim Lee to become official King Of America, I don’t know. But I expect to start hearing leaks a little later today.

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IDW Limited Issues A Transformers Collection. How Much Money Do You Have?

IDW Limited Issues A Transformers Collection. How Much Money Do You Have? | Comic Books |

Here you go, folks. The Transformers IDW Collection Volume 1 Deluxe Limited Edition Hardcover. For the Transformers fan with more money than sense. Which is all of us!

Here are the specs;

Red Label $125

• Limited to 275 copies, hand-numbered and signed
• Limited-edition, custom-designed slipcase
• Mounted signature page signed by SIX Transformers creators including Coller, Furman, Matere, McCarthy, Milne and Su
• Exclusive IDW Limited custom cover in silver metallic ink
• Vellum overlay of the title page with silver metallic ink
• Brand-new silver metallic ink endpages designed to mirror the style of the slipcase and portfolio

Black Label $300

• Limited to 10 copies (for each artist participating 10/10/10)
• Hand-drawn illustration of a single Transformers character housed in a hardcover portfolio case by Casey Coller/Alex Milne/Matere
• Characters drawn include: Shockwave, Megatron, Optimus, Hot Rod or Ratchet
• Limited-edition, custom-designed tray case
• Mounted signature page signed by SIX Transformers creators including Coller, Furman, Matere, McCarthy, Milne and Su
• Custom, exclusive to IDW Limited cover in silver metallic ink
• Vellum overlay of the title page
• Brand-new endpages designed to mirror the style of the tray case and portfolio
• Black Foil stamp & satin book ribbon

Blue Label $400

• Limited to 10 copies
• Hand-drawn illustration of multiple Transformers by EJ Su
• Limited-edition, custom-designed tray case
• Mounted signature page signed by SIX Transformers creators including Coller, Furman, Matere, McCarthy, Milne and Su
• Custom, exclusive to IDW Limited cover in silver metallic ink
• Vellum overlay of the title page
• Brand-new endpages designed to mirror the style of the tray case and portfolio
• Blue Foil stamp & satin book ribbon

Images from the Black label version below…

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#Vertigone? | Comic Books |

"I’ve worked with a legend for 25 years. She’s the best, & I’ll miss her gentleness & sanity at VertigoDC – Neil Gaiman

I’ve long said there are two or three people to whom I owe my career. Karen Berger is one of them. Wow." – Phil Jimenez

There are a few points I want to consider.

"Karen Berger ranks with Stan Lee and William Gaines as one of the most influential editors in the history of American comics." - Chris Roberson

At one point in the last decade, then-Senior VP of Legal Business Development at DC Comics, Paula Lowitt was boasting in a meeting about the richness of story at Vertigo comics, as a defense against the line losing money for DC Comics. Then-President CEO of Warner Bros Entertainment, Alan Horn asked why DC and Warner weren’t developing more of the books into movies then. Lowitt mentioned that DC didn’t necessarily control all of the media rights, but that was one reason why they got such great stories in the first place. Horn asked why they would create a contract that saw the company lose money on almost every book, hope to make it on the collections, and not control every media right going? And as a result of that meeting, Horn saw to it that the Vertigo contracts changed so that DC would have a stronger hold over how and where the comics get exploited.

"Very sad to hear about Karen Berger leaving Vertigo. A painful end to an era that shouldn’t have ended. I wish her the best."- Steve Niles

Since then, Neil Gaiman created no new properties for DC. Neither did Garth Ennis. Neither did Warren Ellis. DC Vertigo lost their major stars to Avatar, Image, Dynamite, Marvel (briefly) and other media.

"Karen Berger leaves behind an extraordinary editorial legacy behind her. Easily one of the best ever." - Steve Wacker

Vertigo never even got a major media hit with the new contracts. Fables was lookaliked into Once Upon A Time. Simon Oliver waited for his contract with Vertigo to expire and he had all the rights back before he turned around and sold the cancelled Vertigo series The Exterminators to Showtime. People stopped playing ball.

Karen Berger gave me my first DC Comics job on WonderWoman. I’m happy to say I pencilled the first Vertigo issue of Sandman.- Jill Thompson

The other major point was the reorganisation of DC Comics into DC Entertainment, which saw Paul Levitz fired as Publisher and President. Karen Berger was his assistant in the early days and, despite all sorts of material he found distasteful, Levitz defended Vertigo’s attempts to explore it. Karen Berger used to report directly to him. Now, under the new regime, she reported to the DCU Editor-In-Chief instead, as she saw the IP she managed taken from her and given to the DCU. Hellblazer was the stand out – until next year. Swamp Thing was ripped from Vertigo in mid-publication. The graphic novel line was rapidly reduced, with staff fired. I began to be told that people believed that DC were trying to force Karen out – she was expensive, she was old school, she didn’t fit with the New 52. Ironically, she found herself editing such a title, Dial H, after it was repurposed from Vertigo to the New 52, as writer China Mieville demanded he still work with Berger. Karen was at odds with Dan DiDio over many things – aside from the new DC logo which they both despised.

Wishing Karen Berger the best! In 2006 Karen, Shelly Bond & Steve Seagle took a chance on me in American Virgin, and I’ve never looked back! – Becky Cloonan

Vertigo is, of course more than Karen Berger. There are a number of talented, hard working and committed people on that team, producing some wonderful books. Shelly Bond, Will Dennis and more. There are Scott Snyder and Jeff Lemire‘s sci-fi titles. There’s Sandman Zero. There’s the Millenium Trilogy. But without her, it will be less.

Imagine what Karen Berger could do at a company like Image or Dark Horse without all the corporate stuff. It’d be neat, is what I’m saying.- Tim Seeley

The reason I read DC Comics today… hell, the reason I still read any comics today is Vertigo. The reason I read Vertigo then was Karen.

Karen Berger is to comics what Maxwell Perkins was to the history of American letters. My imagination has always been a Vertigo imagination. – Joe Hill

Few editors have changed the entire comics industry. Karen Berger is one of them. Her leaving DC is the end of an era – Stephen Christy

But this is not an obituary. Now to see what Karen does next… and, of course, what Vertigo does next too.

“[Karen Berger] will help decide on a new Vertigo director.” Why bother? The position won’t even exist a year from now.” – Mark Waid

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New Poster For Man Of Steel Sees Superman In Chains

New Poster For Man Of Steel Sees Superman In Chains | Comic Books |

Inhuman bondage. This new Man of Steel poster was dropped via the film’s Facebook page.

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Hugh Grant And Steve Coogan In The Avengers?

Hugh Grant And Steve Coogan In The Avengers? | Comic Books |

Illustrating an article by Political Editor Trevor Kavanagh in Rupert Murdoch and News International’s The Sun newspaper on the Leveson report into the morality of the press, cartoonist Brighty gave us this cartoon. Featuring Hugh Grant, Steve Coogan and Max Mosely in the manner of The Avengers.

Can I suggest that Brighty probably wanted to draw these guys and jumped as a word in the article title to make his dreams come true?

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The original Batmobile is going on sale for the first time

The original Batmobile is going on sale for the first time | Comic Books |

Before the 1966 Batman TV series first aired, auto customizer George Barris purchased a 1955 Lincoln Futura concept car from the Ford Motor Company for $1, a car he would transform into the iconic Batmobile. Since then, the car has never been sold, remaining an unobtainable piece of pop culture memorabilia. This January, however, the Batmobile will go on the auction block, meaning one lucky soul will own this bit of Bat-history.
The TV Batmobile will be auctioned off during the Barrett-Jackson car auction in Scottsdale, Ariz., on January 19th. Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like the car comes with any of the wonderful toys Adam West and Burt Ward deployed during their Gotham City adventures. No Bat Ray, Batputer, or Bat-tering Ram? Still, it's cool enough to warrant building a Batcave just to house the thing. In fact, Batcaves should be a prerequisite for Batmobile ownership.

While this is the original, drove-Adam-West's-butt-around TV Batmobile, it's not the only version of the car Barris built. He built three additional Batmobiles: two for the exhibition circuit and one for exhibition drag racing, which are owned by private individuals. If you must have the original, though, you'll have to hightail it to Arizona after the New Year.

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Did James Badge Dale Drop A Huge Iron Man 3 Spoiler?

Did James Badge Dale Drop A Huge Iron Man 3 Spoiler? | Comic Books |

There are spoilers ahead, and not just for Iron Man 3.

Back in 2005, Warner Bros. released Batman Begins, the first of Chris Nolan’s three excursions to Gotham City. The villain of the piece was Ra’s Al Ghul, and to this day, Ken Watanabe takes the credit for playing that role on The IMDB, while Liam Neeson is credited only as Ducard.

Pfft. Most of us know now how that actually pans out in the movie.

The movie tricks us, to some extent, by using the most ‘oriental presentation’ of Ra’s al Ghul as a decoy for a less bold one. It seeks to use, I think, stereotyping against us.

And it might be that Iron Man 3 is playing a similar game with us. Similar, though as you’ll see, not necessarily quite the same.

Showbiz 411′s Paula Schwartz spoke to James Badge Dale recently. Dale is playing Eric Savin in Iron Man 3, and very possibly takes on the alias of Coldblood. But here’s what he had to say about the power structure of the film’s villainous hierarchy:

Ben Kingsley is the mouthpiece. Guy Pearce is the brain. I’m the muscle.

Just a mouthpiece?

Guy Pearce has previously said his role in Iron Man 3 is just “a cameo.” Mind you, he said more or less the same thing about Prometheus, denying he’d appear for more than a minute or so.

Of course, if Dale’s comments really can be taken in such a way and he has let slip that The Mandarin is more puppet, less master, then we’re moving off-text a little when it comes to adapting the comics. Would Marvel do that?

Well, maybe – it could certainly help them address the “representation issues” that have dogged The Mandarin in the comics, the things that led Iron Man 3 director Shane Black to call the character, as he appears in Marvel’s strips, “a racist caricature.”

But going off-comic can make the fanbase so angry. I’m not sure they’d want to take this risk…

I suggest we should probably assume for now that Dale’s comments are not supposed to be taken in any way that undermines the power of this “mouthpiece,” and that he didn’t mean to let the air out of The Mandarin so completely.

Let’s assume, appropriately enough, that in this case, Dale’s mouth got a little ahead of his brain.

Incidentally, the headline of the Showbiz 411 story tells us that Dale has now been cast in a movie called Parkland:

set between the time JFK was killed by Oswald and Oswald was murdered by Jack Ruby in November 1963.

Dale is going to play Oswald’s brother, who I know nothing about at all. The title would seem to refer to the Parkland hospital where both JFK and later Oswald died – and, indeed, Jack Ruby died there too, coincidentally, just over three years later.

Conspiracy theorists have even claimed that doctors at the Parkland killed Oswald, to explain his dying from a “minor” shot to the stomach. I doubt that this will be the subject of this film, though one never knows.

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The Death Of Bazooka Joe

The Death Of Bazooka Joe | Comic Books |

I have never seen a Bazooka Joe chewing gum comic strip. Not in the flesh that is. And now I never will.

Oh I’m aware of them certainly, seen photos and scans, its just that they never made it to Pontefract, West Yorkshire, England, when I was growing up. And while a move to London gave arise to the experience of a Reese’s Piece and a Krusty Kreme, Bazooka Joe stayed a foreigner to me.

Not to all Brits. Stuart Goddard, better known as Adam Ant, is a famous comic book fan (I once met him at one of the nineties London comic cons), and his first band was called Bazooka Joe.

So when I hear the news that Bazooka Joe is to cease their inside-wrapping comic strips in an attempt to modernise the brand, I feel a ghost nostalgic twang. In another world, another life, when I was born an American, they may well have been a big thing to me. And sent me on my way, inspired, with longform birth certificate in hand, to become President.

As it is, I’m a comics blogger in England. Ah, what could have been.

NBC runs this report on sixty years of Bazooka Joe.

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