Aug. 20, 2014 | 4:00 a.m.
Grant Morrison is at ease with the prospect of other dimensions. As an acclaimed comic book writer and superhero behaviorist, he’s traveled widely amid the disparate worlds of DC Comics, Marvel and characters of his own creation. It gets complicated out there. Nowhere have things been more entangled with cosmic implications than DC (ancestral home to Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman), evolving into a web of universes that over the decades has expanded and collapsed through various “Crisis” series — and, most recently, in the 2011 revamping called the New 52. Morrison has now been charged with making sense of DC’s Multiverse of 52 Earths, creating stories and a road map with various artists in a monthly series debuting this week with “The Multiversity” No. 1. It will be followed by standalone comics that take a startlingly diverse look at […]
Aug. 15, 2014 | 9:00 a.m.
“Penny Dora and the Wishing Box,” Michael Stock and Sina Grace’s new all-ages Image Comics series, has its roots in a half-page story written five years ago – by, appropriately enough, an 8-year-old. The five-issue fantasy adventure about a young girl in suburban Southern California who finds that titular magical item at her doorstep on the day before Christmas began as a reinvention of the Pandora myth by writer Stock’s daughter, Nico. That short story made it into her school newspaper, and Stock, founder of the longtime popular Part-Time Punks club night at the Echo in Los Angeles and host of the same-named radio show, had her read it on his KXLU-FM (88.9) program. “I will still get calls from time to time from various people being like, ‘Whatever happened to the magic box?’” Stock told Hero Complex during a […]
Aug. 13, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.
A feminist icon in a genre dominated by male characters, Wonder Woman has always been a pioneer in superhero comics, and this week, she boldly ventures into new territory with her first digital comics series, “Sensation Comics Featuring Wonder Woman.” An anthology in the vein of the recent “Adventures of Superman” and “Legends of the Dark Knight” titles, this new series allows creators to tell stories set outside of DC’s New 52 continuity, giving them the chance to put their favorite versions of Wonder Woman on the page. The Superman and Batman anthologies have produced some of those heroes’ most captivating stories over the last two years, and based on the creative team for “Sensation Comics” No. 1, it’s very likely that Wonder Woman will see the same kind of fortune. Writer Gail Simone penned an exceptional two-year “Wonder Woman” […]
Aug. 07, 2014 | 9:40 a.m.
Leading up to the fall release of “Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham,” the Dark Knight is getting a block-style makeover for the variant cover of “Detective Comics” No. 36. The issue, set for November release, will be one of several Lego-themed variant covers highlighting the iterations of famous characters from the DC stable to appear in the game. Aquaman, Batgirl, Wonder Woman and Catwoman, among several others, will be treated to the temporary makeover. The “Lego Batman” games have always put a lighter spin on a character that’s traditionally as grim and gritty as they come, but the upcoming third game in the series, “Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham” will add a bit of retro fun. Players of the game, which will be available later this year for all systems, will get to play a level of the 1960s “Batman” […]
Aug. 06, 2014 | 3:00 p.m.
Two years ago, at the age of 16, Jillian Kirby began a campaign designed to honor the legacy of her late grandfather, Jack Kirby, the comics legend who created or co-created a host of iconic Marvel characters — Captain America, the Fantastic Four, X-Men, the Avengers and Thor, among them. Titled Kirby4Heroes, the charitable venture was launched to generate donations for the Hero Initiative, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping comic book creators in need, offering assistance to artists and writers. Once again, this year Kirby is hoping to raise money while celebrating the wide-ranging influence of the artistry of her grandfather, who dreamed up many of his heroes in the basement of his Long Island home. (Jillian’s father, Neal Kirby, wrote a first-person account of his childhood in the house for Hero Complex in 2012.) On Aug. 28 — what would have […]
July 29, 2014 | 3:05 p.m.
Paolo Rivera won two Eisner Awards for his lush work on Marvel’s “Daredevil,” but he hasn’t produced regular interior art since leaving that title in 2012. This October, he returns to monthly comics with “The Valiant,” a new miniseries written by Jeff Lemire and Matt Kindt. Uniting Valiant Comics’ superhero characters against a threat that has evolved through time, this project gives Rivera freedom to stretch his creative muscles in a fledgling comic-book universe, and early preview pages and concept designs promise all the detail and dynamism of his work at Marvel. Born and raised in Daytona Beach, Fla., Rivera was introduced to comic books by his father, Joe Rivera, a painter of custom motorcycles who kept assorted issues around the house. “I grew up in Florida not too far from Disney,” Rivera says. “I was a kid who could […]
July 28, 2014 | 8:00 a.m.
Who is the most important person in Marvel Comics history? Several audience members responded to Mark Waid’s question by shouting back “Stan Lee!” No, the Eisner Award-winning “Daredevil” writer told the crowd gathered for a panel about Marvel’s 75th and the Man Without Fear’s 50th anniversaries. But they were close: It’s Lee’s wife Joanie, Waid said. In 1961, Lee “was starting to feel burned out” after 20 years and about 10,000 issues of various genre stories under the direction of publisher Martin Goodman, said Waid, an expert on comics history, and was looking to do something else with his life. “It was his wife Joanie,” Waid continued, “who said … ‘If you’re done with comics and go away and do something else, at least take one last shot and do something that you really want to do… And if it […]
July 28, 2014 | 7:00 a.m.
Chuck Palahniuk paused while describing the story of the upcoming “Fight Club 2” to read the Comic-Con reminder that some audience members may be under 18. He then mentioned, in moderate language, that the unnamed narrator from his 1996 novel and fellow support group faker Marla, now married in the 10-issue Dark Horse comic book continuation, “haven’t had great sex in 10 years,” since Tyler Durden was around. “And Marla is desperate to get laid the way she got laid by Tyler, even if it means titrating her husband’s medication so that late at night she can coax Tyler out of suppression,” Palahniuk said, “even if it means doing this to the extent that Tyler is more and more in the world and eventually destroys their home and their family and drags them into chaos” in search of the couple’s […]
July 26, 2014 | 7:51 p.m.
“Saga,” writer Brian K. Vaughan and artist Fiona Staples told their panel’s capacity crowd Saturday at Comic-Con, is Hazel’s story. The daughter of Alana and Marko – on-the-run lovers born of warring alien species – Hazel narrates Vaughan and Staples’ creator-owned, Eisner Award-winning hit Image Comics series from an as yet unseen future. Readers first met her just as she was being born, and in the most recent issues see her as a toddler. “Her parents are a very important part of her life now,” said Vaughan, who hasn’t been shy about killing off “Saga” characters. “But they might not always be.” After the audience’s mournful reaction to that, he jokingly offered, “Or maybe they’ll always be!” The truly out-there sci-fi series’ first deluxe hardcover, collecting the first 18 issues, has a cover image of the infant Hazel breastfeeding, with […]
July 26, 2014 | 4:27 p.m.
Marvel is launching back into “Star Wars” comics with major creative Force, with three series – a core title, plus a Darth Vader ongoing and a Princess Leia miniseries — rolling out in January, February and March. Writer Jason Aaron (“Thor, God of Thunder”) and John Cassaday (“Astonishing X-Men”), who Marvel Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada introduced to the “Cup o’ Joe” Comic-Con International panel Saturday afternoon as “Jedis,” will pick up the story right after the original film in January’s “Star Wars” No. 1, an ongoing monthly series. “As far as I’m concerned it’s 1977, and we’ve just been hired to produce the direct sequel to that original movie,” Aaron said. “I want everybody here who reads this book to feel like I felt when I was a kid and first met these characters … I want you to […]