April 22, 2015 | 10:48 a.m.
Chip Zdarsky is evolving. Originally created as a pseudonym for newspaper illustrator Steve Murray, the persona of Chip Zdarsky allowed Murray to create illustrations and comics that would have posed conflicts with his day job at Toronto’s National Post, but that veil of anonymity has been pulled away over the years as Zdarsky’s profile rose in the comic-book community. Working with writer Matt Fraction as the artist of Image Comics’ “Sex Criminals,” Zdarsky won an Eisner Award for best new series last year, and in 2015, he takes on his first major projects as writer: a new “Howard the Duck” series for Marvel Comics with artist Joe Quinones, which debuted in March, and the creator-owned “Kaptara” for Image Comics with artist Kagan McLeod, which launches this week. “Back in the day, it was a lot of fun,” Zdarsky said. “I […]
Jan. 08, 2015 | 6:34 p.m.
Brian K. Vaughan showed at Image Expo on Thursday that he’d meant it when he said comics are a “vastly superior medium” to film and television, announcing two new projects he’ll write in addition to continuing the award-winning, bestselling “Saga.” The acclaimed comics creator – who brought Stephen King’s “Under the Dome” to television and was a producer on “Lost” – has followed up on his proclamation from last year’s Eisner Awards by taking on more work in the medium than he has in years, teaming up with artist Steve Skroce on the limited series “We Stand on Guard,” which finds Canadian freedom fighters resisting an invasion of U.S. forces (including “giant … robots”), and with artist Cliff Chiang (“Wonder Woman”) on the ongoing story “Paper Girls,” about 12-year-old suburban newspaper delivery girls who encounter strange happenings. Vaughan’s announcements came […]
Jan. 08, 2015 | 12:00 p.m.
A group of incoming Princeton freshmen heading to Central America to build schools may mean well, but they’ll find “No Mercy” abroad in Alex de Campi and Carla Speed McNeil’s new series at Image Comics. The privileged, carefree teens are confronted with tragedy in an unfamiliar and unwelcoming land that separates them from their creature comforts. There will be blood. And emoji. Writer De Campi (“Grindhouse: Doors Open at Midnight,” “Smoke/Ashes”) and Eisner- and Los Angeles Times Book Prize-winning artist McNeil (“Finder”), with color artist Jenn Manley Lee (“Dicebox”), are creating eight issues (before a break and then more issues) with as many twists and turns as a narrow mountain road. “No Mercy” No. 1 is scheduled for an April release. Hero Complex readers get an early look at the debut issue’s first six pages — and a look at […]
Dec. 18, 2014 | 12:40 p.m.
While interviewing writer Joe Keatinge and artist Leila Del Duca about their creator-owned Image Comics series “Shutter,” the first thing that stands out is how often they make each other laugh. There’s a relaxed, friendly energy between the two collaborators that is clearly evident, even through the filter of a conference call, and that personal connection has translated to outstanding creative chemistry on the comic-book page. Keatinge and Del Duca have two very different histories with the medium. A Los Angeles native, Keatinge grew up in an area heavily populated with comic shops, and can’t recall a time when comics weren’t a part of his life. Del Duca was raised in Missoula and Billings, Mont., where comic shops were scarce. She was exposed to the medium through the Internet and the early days of webcomics, but it wasn’t until college […]
Oct. 28, 2014 | 10:00 a.m.
Scott Snyder prefers horror where the humans are worse than the monsters. That idea, rooted in the Eisner Award-winning, bestselling writer’s early exposure to George Romero’s classic “Night of the Living Dead,” is at play in his new Image Comics series with artist Jock, “Wytches,” which arrived to enthusiastic reviews earlier this month. In “Wytches,” the titular terrors look more fearsome than “cackling women around the caldron,” as Snyder put it in a phone conversation with Hero Complex about his favorite horror stories. But what he hopes is more frightening than their bestial, skeletal appearance is that “they don’t come and eat anybody unless someone gives that person to them.” ‘Wytches’ preview: Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3 | Page 4 | Page 5 | Page 6 The witches’ far-advanced knowledge of natural sciences means they can do […]
Oct. 20, 2014 | 10:00 a.m.
Oddly Normal is as conflicted as her name. The smart, sullen schoolgirl star of writer-artist Otis Frampton’s emotionally stormy all-ages Image Comics series is the daughter of parents from different worlds: Her father is an average-as-average-gets Earth guy; her mother is a most unusual woman – a witch from the fantastical Fignation. And being a half-witch girl – complete with naturally green hair and pointy ears — in a typical American school isn’t easy. A social outcast with a sardonic wit for self-defense, she feels like an outsider even in her own family, who live in the sole creepy Victorian manse on a street of cookie-cutter suburban houses. In an angry moment on her 10th birthday, as seen in last month’s well-reviewed first issue, she isn’t careful what she wishes for. “Oddly Normal” No. 2, out Wednesday, continues Frampton’s reboot […]
Sept. 12, 2014 | 11:00 a.m.
Is there such a thing as too much imagination? A limit on new ideas? That’s what Emily the Strange and her band mate Willow are told by a fussy visitor in a story that’s part of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s and Image Comics’ 48-page, all-ages-appropriate “Liberty Annual 2014,” which benefits the CBLDF’s 1st Amendment work. And don’t worry — the young rock ‘n’ roll rebels aren’t going to stand for that your-thoughts-are-too-unruly business. “Emily and the Strangers in … The Idea Factory” has a story by Mariah Huehner (“True Blood: All Together Now”) and Emily the Strange creator Rob Reger, with art by Cat Farris — the same team behind the recent “Emily and the Strangers: Breaking the Record” miniseries at Dark Horse. Hero Complex readers can get an early peek at the story in the gallery above […]
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 […]
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 23, 2014 | 7:24 p.m.
New highs, warthog wizards and a robot boy on the run figure into upcoming Image Comics titles from acclaimed writers Warren Ellis, Kurt Busiek and Jeff Lemire, respectively. Those projects and more in an increasingly sci-fi-heavy lineup were revealed Wednesday afternoon during Image Expo at the Hilton Bayfront San Diego before Comic-Con International’s preview night – part of a trend of comics publishers making announcements before the din of Comic-Con reaches full volume. FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 But where Marvel and Archie Comics announced changes to longstanding franchises and characters, Image pointedly rolled out all-new, creator-owned titles. Iconoclastic Image Publisher Eric Stephenson, mentioning the changes to Thor, Captain America, Archie and more without naming the characters, said, “It’s hard to believe that as far as comics have come since the turn of the century … this is still what passes […]