Comics

April 16, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.

‘Robin Rises’: Peter J. Tomasi on one-shot, ‘Batman and Robin’ 33

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Fans of the late Damian Wayne may be excited at the title “Robin Rises: Omega” and the restoration of a familiar sidekick name to “Batman and …,” but writer Peter J. Tomasi isn’t yet saying who the Robin in the July stories will be. The tough-to-tame Damian — who was Bruce Wayne’s son, the most recent Robin and maybe the most dangerous 10-year-old in the DC Universe — died in battle in the early 2013 release “Batman Inc.” No. 8. Since then, his father has been seen trying to figure out a way to revive him — and trying to recover his body from the boy’s villainous grandfather, Ra’s al Ghul, who’s stolen it and daughter Talia al Ghul’s — in the pages of”Batman and …,” which has featured a variety of team-ups (most recently Aquaman) since Damian’s demise. “Robin […]
April 15, 2014 | 6:04 p.m.

Eisner Awards: ‘Hawkeye,’ ‘The Wake,’ ‘Saga’ lead nominations field

"Hawkeye" writer Matt Fraction is nominated for a 2014 Eisner Award for his work on the series. (David Aja / Marvel)
Marvel’s “Hawkeye,” DC/Vertigo’s “The Wake” and Image’s “Saga” topped the roster of Eisner Award nominations, which honor outstanding work in the comics field. The nominations for the 2014 awards were announced Tuesday, marking the 26th year of the ceremony, long considered to be the Oscars for comics. Image Comics topped the list of publishers with 17 nominations plus three shared; Fantagraphics received 18 noms. “Hawkeye” and its creative team received five nominations for writer Matt Fraction, continuing series, single issue, cover artist (David Aja) and colorist (Matt Hollingsworth). Fraction was nominated for best writer for several series, including “Sex Criminals,” which was hailed by Time as “comic series of the year.” Fraction will square off in the category against Kelly Sue DeConnick, who was nominated for her work on two series — Image’s “Pretty Deadly,” which earned several nominations and Marvel’s “Captain […]
April 14, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.

‘Batman: Zero Year’ 30: Scott Snyder talks ‘Savage City,’ Crime Alley

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“Batman: Zero Year” is writer Scott Snyder’s and artist Greg Capullo’s ambitious 12-part comics event exploring Bruce Wayne’s beginnings as the Caped Crusader in DC Comics’ New 52. Snyder is joining Hero Complex each month for an exclusive preview of the next issue and conversation about the story so far. Part 9 of the saga arrives Wednesday with “Batman” No. 30. Batman is defeated, presumed dead. And the Riddler has the run of a transformed Gotham City. Welcome to “Savage City,” the final arc of “Zero Year,” which writer Scott Snyder says is “where the biggest, most fun and craziest elements of the story begin.” Where the “Secret City” and “Dark City” segments re-envisioned the classic elements of Batman’s origin story, the third part is what the Eisner Award winner says is the reward for readers letting the “Batman” team […]
March 27, 2014 | 10:25 a.m.

‘Ms. Marvel’: G. Willow Wilson, Sana Amanat on Kamala’s transformation

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The new Ms. Marvel was a media sensation months before her first adventure was published: Kamala Khan, the girl behind the superhero’s mask, would be Marvel’s first Muslim character to star in her own title. But what shape her comic book series would take, and whether sales would match the hype, remained to be seen. “People love to talk about new and different,” said “Ms. Marvel” writer G. Willow Wilson. “They don’t always love to buy and read new and different.” The fear in debuting such a risky character, series editor Sana Amanat said, is always: “If we do something like this, is it a gimmick?” As “Ms. Marvel” No. 1 heads to a third printing and next month’s No. 3 approaches, early indications are that the teenage Kamala’s story has resonated with readers – and drawn new customers into […]
March 21, 2014 | 11:33 a.m.

‘Flash’ 29 preview: Is Barry Allen closing in on his mother’s killer?

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The Flash is the fastest man alive, but is that enough when chasing a ghost? In “The Flash” No. 29, from writer Brian Buccellato and artist Agustin Padilla, Barry Allen is in hot pursuit of who he believes may have killed his mother, a crime for which his father has long languished in prison after being wrongly convicted. But the serial killer in question is a spirit, one that possesses the living to do its bidding — and is now hunting down descendants of the man who founded Central City. Luckily, the Scarlet Speedster has some help from Deadman, who also can possess the living. Whether the spectral Keystone Killer was behind the death of Nora Allen isn’t the only mystery afoot. There’s also the question of the nature of the relationship that Capt. Darryl Frye, Barry’s superior at the […]
March 19, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.

‘American Vampire’: Rafael Albuquerque talks monstrous ‘Second Cycle’

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Skinner Sweet is hell on wheels, and “American Vampire” co-creator Rafael Albuquerque says the visual engine is “Easy Rider.” The original Abominus americana rides in the sunlight again Wednesday as Brazilian artist Albuquerque and writer Scott Snyder’s Eisner Award-winning Vertigo series begins its “Second Cycle” after a planned hiatus that lasted more than a year. Set in the 1960s, the new arc finds the deadly outlaw Sweet, first of a new breed that walks in daylight and is felled by gold, up to no good in Mexico. Meanwhile, the woman he turned, former aspiring actress Pearl Jones, has returned home to Kansas from Los Angeles, an ever-young widow who outlived her beloved musician husband Henry. And, as teased in the last regular issue before the break, a mysterious threat called the Gray Trader is on the horizon. “AV” readers’ blood thirst […]
March 10, 2014 | 12:30 p.m.

‘Batman: Zero Year’ 29: Scott Snyder previews Crime Alley, Bluebird

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“Batman: Zero Year” is writer Scott Snyder’s and artist Greg Capullo’s ambitious 11-part comics event exploring Bruce Wayne’s beginnings as the Caped Crusader in DC Comics’ New 52. Snyder is joining Hero Complex each month for an exclusive preview of the next issue and conversation about the story so far. Part 8 of the saga arrives Wednesday with “Batman” No. 29. Scott Snyder wants you to feel young Bruce Wayne’s pain. “We want you to really hurt,” he says of his and Greg Capullo’s version of the murders of Martha and Thomas Wayne in Crime Alley. Their take on that pivotal moment arrives Wednesday in the 40-page “Batman” No. 29. After jumping into the future of “Batman Eternal” last month with the “spoiler” (well, make that Spoiler) issue  No. 28 — where the whip-smart, crafty and determined young Gothamite Harper […]
March 10, 2014 | 11:32 a.m.

Marvel kicks off 75th anniversary celebration with teaser video

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It’s an auspicious year for the Avengers, the X-Men, Spider-Man and more as Marvel Entertainment celebrates the 75th anniversary of the comic book that launched the Marvel Universe. “Marvel Comics” No. 1, released in 1939, marked the beginning of what has become one of the most successful brands in comics, film, television and toys. That issue, edited by Timely Publications’ Martin Goodman, debuted the Human Torch and the Angel, as well as featuring Namor the Sub-Mariner, Ka-Zar the Great, the Masked Raider and more. The comic was a smash hit, selling out and prompting a second printing. The success led to the beginning of Marvel Comics as we know it. To kick off its yearlong anniversary celebration, Marvel has released a trailer, narrated by the publisher’s editor in chief, Axel Alonso. The trailer (watch it above) teases Marvel.com/75, the website […]
Feb. 12, 2014 | 12:52 p.m.

Exclusive: ‘Beautiful Darkness’ a bizarre fairy tale about brutality

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Don’t let the whimsically water-colored fairy world in “Beautiful Darkness” fool you; this graphic novel, out today from Drawn and Quarterly, is not a happily-ever-after sort of story. In “Beautiful Darkness,” French comics writer Fabien Vehlmann (“Isle of 100,000 Graves”) and husband-and-wife cartooning team Kerascoët (“Miss Don’t Touch Me”) present the story of Aurora, a cheery and resourceful heroine whose tea party with a prince is interrupted by a deluge of what appears to be blood. Aurora escapes, emerging from the skull of a dead girl, along with dozens of other tiny people. In the coming days and months, they try to survive in the face of hunger, woodland animals and, most terrifyingly, their own capacity for cruelty. It’s a twisted tale that draws from the likes of “Alice in Wonderland” and “The Borrowers,” only “Beautiful Darkness” presents a much […]
Feb. 12, 2014 | 11:08 a.m.

Valentine’s Day: ‘Alone Forever’ comic finds humor in heartbreak

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If you find yourself among the lovelorn this Valentine’s Day, Liz Prince’s graphic novel “Alone Forever: The Singles Collection” might prove a perfect remedy. “Alone Forever,” out this month from Top Shelf Productions, collects 104 pages of Prince’s autobiographical comic strip — a self-deprecating look at relationships, love and the lack thereof. The Boston-based comics creator chronicles her experiences with online dating, awkward first encounters and (questionably) flirty interactions with bearded strangers, not to mention tender moments with her constant true loves — her cats and her punk rock music. Prince, whose previous titles include the Ignatz Award-winning “Will You Still Love Me If I Wet The Bed?” and “Delayed Replays,” will be in the Los Angeles area on Sunday for L.A. Zine Fest at Helms Bakery in Culver City. Hero Complex: How did this project come about? I understand […]
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