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July 26, 2016

Bundled Extra: Let’s Throw The Spotlight On The Comics-Related News From Comic-Con


I've received some word from several CR readers that it seemed there was a lack of comics news at Comic-Con International in 2016. I think it was a light year of news for all the media participating. Even the movie material was less about casting announcements or substantive deal-making than it was debuting commercials on existing films' behalf.

There were some fun announcements and bits of news, though, strictly as it related to the comics medium -- the greatest of them all. Here's what I could find.

* Drawn and Quarterly announced its acquisitions of Hostages by Guy Delisle and Poppies Of Iraq by Lewis Trondheim and Brigitte Findakly. The Delisle is due next Spring and the Poppies book in the Fall.

image* there will be a Jack Kirby-era Fantastic Four Artist's Edition from IDW in early 2017, kicking off that year's celebration of the King's 100th birthday with style and flair.

* this isn't a project that exists, but Derf let it be known during his spotlight panel that as a irascible long-time resident of Cleveland with a great sense of humor, he'd be pretty good at writing a Howard The Duck comic. In general, if you're pitching, Derf is listening.

* Joëlle Jones signed an exclusive at DC Comics.

* the Graphix imprint at Scholastic announced at their annual cocktail party that they will be hosting a major contest aimed at unpublished cartoonists to find their newest author. That seems like one hell of an opportunity, and should benefit them PR-wise as well as the services of the person they select. All those cartoonists dress pretty well, so I have to imagine that it's a good company through which to publish.

* Marvel is going to launch a title called World Of Wakanda expanding on plotlines suggested in their popular Black Panther comic. Artist Afua Richardson, artist Alitha Martinez, poet Yona Harvey and writer Roxane Gay are apparently involved. I'm putting Richardson first here because that Times article failed to mention her at all.

* IDW plans to publish a bunch of new Hasbro-related series in the months ahead.

* the Richard Rider as Nova character will appear in a forthcoming Marvel comic book.

* the videogame company Blizzard will team with Dark Horse Comics to make comics related to the gaming company's Overwatch franchise.

* in what may be Comic-Con's first announcement of an announcement, Jim Lee let it be known there will likely be some use of the WildStorm properties under DC's current "Rebirth" line directive. That was a talent-driven company when it was at its height, but that talent did enough with the characters that I would imagine some of them to be appealing.

* Tomb Raider gets a fancy archival treatment.

image* Keith Knight let slip at a panel on Thursday that a next-year book for which he's doing only illustrations -- I'm guessing this one -- is part of a three-book deal.

* Marvel is planning to have its Inhumans properties fight their X-Men properties in an event comic over the 2016-2017 winter. That sounds miserable. I don't really understand Marvel's recent stewardship of those properties. Inhumans seems a gold mine -- aliens among us that are machines of intergalactic war -- that has been given X-Men plotline hand-me-downs. X-Men is a former champ that got old and worn out and seems to be wrestling with its t-shirt on these days. X-Men in particular seems to be in that place DC was with the Legion Of Super-Heroes property right before they basically stopped trying. I will feel better for the loser (which will be the mutants), and the resulting hope for an eventual relaunch unburdened by nostalgia and the impediment of movie-deal emphasis.

* VIZ has joined the corporate partnerships portion of the CBLDF support umbrella, and there's already a handbook to show for it.

* writer Joss Whedon will do some work on a forthcoming comic starring the Rupert Giles character from the Buffy The Vampire Slayer TV show. Speaking of Whedon, there will be a new Firefly/Serenity comic book series from Dark Horse.

* Ben Hatke has a sizable comic out any second called Mighty Jack.

image* at her spotlight panel on Thursday, when asked about potential future projects, Lisa Hanawalt let slip that she has made many more Coyote Doggirl comics than she's posted on-line.

* there were Eisner Awards. Big nights for Drawn and Quarterly, Fantagraphics, Image. Hall Of Fame welcomes Tove Jansson, Carl Burgos, Lynda Barry, Matt Groening, Rube Goldberg and Jacques Tardi.

* I'm sure I'm missing a few, but it looks like comics-related people taking home Inkpots were Peggy Burns, Tom Devlin, Matt Fraction, Derf, Jason Aaron, Jim Davis, Christopher Priest, Kieron Gillen, Peter David and Alex Sinclair.

* the Comic-Con Icon award went to a comics person this year: Sergio.

* my old industry pal and respected peer Graeme McMillan reminds me that Dynamite had a bunch of pre-show announcements. I'm not finding anyone to sort that out for me -- I'm a brave person but I'm not that brave -- but I'm guessing that this New York Times article is a good place to start. Let me put up a bunch of random links, too.

* Fantagraphics sold out of its allotment of Patience by Saturday afternoon. I think Cartoon Books sold out of the new Bone: Coda, of which they brought tons.

* Graeme had a pre-con story of his own: Joe Casey + Nick Dragotta + America Vasquez.

* IDW will do Jurassic World in 2017. If it's like the movie, it'll be a massive surprise hit. Here's Bleeding Cool's snapshot-driven report on the rest of their retailer presentation.

* finally, Miriam Libicki wrote to admonish me for not coming by her booth, where she would have regaled me with stories about her forthcoming book, Toward A Hot Jew. That's a Fantagraphics book, and I believe the cartoonist's debut there.


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