CRISIS ON REGULAR EARTH: DARK HORSE PUBLISHES EARTHQUAKE SAFETY COMIC
Public-safety media is taking a step away from filmstrips and pamphlets toward something much cooler: comic books. In Oregon, anyway.
The Oregon Office of Emergency Management has partnered with Milwaukee, Oregon-based Dark Horse Comics to release Without Warning, a free, 12-page comic all about earthquake safety. It’s not just a bunch of safety tips with pictures, either. Writers Jeremy Barlow and Althea Rizzo and artist David Hahn have developed a real story about a girl trying to get back to her family in the aftermath of a disaster.
‘DAREDEVIL’ STAR VINCENT D’ONOFRIO TALKS KINGPIN, MARVEL FANS AND ‘DEFENDERS’ CROSSOVER
By Nick Romano
No, you shouldn’t adjust your computer screen. The above photo is of Vincent D’Onofrio, who shaved his head for his role as Wilson Fisk (aka Kingpin) in Marvel’s upcoming ‘Daredevil‘ series, to stream on Netflix in 2015. As he told ScreenCrush earlier today, tonight he’s filming a big scene in Brooklyn where “it’s the first time you see my character do something physical.” Given how intimidating the ‘Law & Order: Criminal Intent’ vet looks in person with this new look — mind you, he’s also 6’4” — we can’t wait to see how his character comes to life on-screen.
Marvel is currently hard at work filming the first of its four upcoming Netflix series (and that’s not including the miniseries team-up of ‘The Defenders’) in New York, but in between shoots, D’Onofrio stopped by the ScreenCrush and Loudwire offices to talk about one of his other passion projects, an indie film titled ‘Mall’ that’s directed by Linkin Park member Joe Hahn. D’Onofrio produced and co-wrote the script for the film, which spotlights a group of characters during a tragic mall shooting.
The film is scheduled for a limited release starting October 17 — be sure to stay tuned for more interviews with D’Onofrio and Hahn before then — but we had to ask the Kingpin himself about transforming into the iconic Marvel villain, his hopes for creating the quintessential portrayal of this character, the series’ crossover potential, and more.
GRAPHIC NOVELIST SETH KUSHNER IS RAISING MONEY FOR A BONE MARROW TRANSPLANT
A day may be coming when comic book creators no longer have to turn to the kindness of others to help them pay their medical bills, but that day is not today. Writers, artists, colorists, letterers — virtually everyone involved with making your favorite comics works in a freelance capacity, where healthcare remains a financial burden in America.
As you may have read a few months ago, Schmuck writer and photographer Seth Kushner has been diagnosed with leukemia and needs a bone marrow transplant. This week, his family started a GoFundMe page to raise $50,000 to make it happen.
I’LL NEVER GO THAT BIG AGAIN: SCOTT SNYDER ON ‘ZERO YEAR: SAVAGE CITY,’ PART ONE [INTERVIEW]
By Chris Sims
For the past year, I’ve spoken to Scott Snyder for a series of in-depth interviews about Batman: Zero Year, the new origin story that he, Greg Capullo, Danny Miki and FCO Plascencia have produced for DC Comics. In the final act, “Savage City,” Batman was confronted with a Gotham City that had been destroyed by a super-storm, was overrun by plants that had grown out of control, and was being held in the iron grip of the Riddler, all while confronting the trauma that inspired him to become a hero.
With the full story completed, I spoke to Snyder for the first part of a two-part interview about how he felt he’d achieved his goals with the bestselling story, the inspiration for the dynamic visuals, and his meeting with Frank Miller, possibly the most definitive Batman author, who had one very specific note about the story.
HERE’S THE THING, EPISODE 21: A BRIEF HISTORY OF FIRESTORM
If our weekly Ask Chris column isn’t enough of definitive comic book (and pro wrestling) opinions for you, good news: ComicsAlliance is proud to present Here’s The Thing, a series of videos where you can join our own extremely opinionated senior writer, Chris Sims, as he dives into comics history to explain why you’re wrong and he’s right.
This week, a few viewers write in to ask about the history of Firestorm, a relatively obscure DC Comics character who was most prominent in the 1980s. As you may already know, obscure DC characters from the ’80s are Chris’s entire jam, which sends him on a long explanation of who Firestorm is and how he came to be, from the DC Implosion to Brave and the Bold.
- Catch up on the original Firestorm stories with DC’s paperback collection from a few years back.
- Perhaps Firestorm’s most enduring contribution to the DC universe was “Curt Nolland,” a stand-in for Smokey and the Bandit-era Burt Reynolds, with whom Killer Frost was briefly infatuated.
- Gerry Conway has a long and incredible career in comics, but non-comics readers may recall him as the writer of the episode of Baywatch Nights that had a mummy in it.
THIS REVIEW IS IN THE FORM OF A LIVE DISSECTION: THE MULTIVERSITY ANNOTATIONS, PART 1
Teased for years and finally launched this week, The Multiversity is a universe-jumping series of DC Comics one-shots tracking the cosmic monitor Nix Uotan and an assemblage of star-crossed heroes as they attempt to save 52 universes and beyond from a trippy cosmic existential threat that, like much of Morrison’s best work, represents something far more mundane and relatable. Tying back into the very first Multiverse story in DC’s history, the heroes of these universes become aware of this threat by reading about it in comic books… comic books that, it turns out, take place in neighboring universes. Indeed, writer Grant Morrison continues his streak of highly metatextual DC cosmic epics with this eight-issue mega-series (plus one Tolkienesque guidebook).
Described by Morrison as “the ultimate statement of what DC is”, The Multiversity naturally offers the reader much beyond the surface level adventure, and that means annotations. Rather than merely filling out checklists of references, my hope with this feature is to slowly unearth and extrapolate a narrative model for Morrison and his collaborators’ work on The Multiversity; an interconnecting web of themes and cause and effect that works both on literal and symbolic levels.
Three pages into the preview for The Multiversity #1, I knew I was going to have a lot to work with.
With no further ado, go get your erasers and your textbooks, close your laptops, sharpen your pencils, and get ready for some course notes. Let’s go to school.
FRANK MILLER: ‘THE 1940S-STYLE GENTLEMAN NEEDS TO MAKE A COMEBACK’
For anyone who still had a little doubt in his or her mind about whether Frank Miller — the man who wrote and drew Sin City, which is basically all about tough guys fightin’ over dames (and also lady ninjas hanging out with prostitutes) — is nostalgic for a perceived golden age of dudeliness, look no further than his new 20Q interview in Playboy.
One of the interview’s wrap-up questions is about whether Miller prefers an old-fashioned ideal of masculinity, and Miller answers that he’d like to see “the 1940s-style gentleman” make a comeback.
“I believe it’s a biological function of men, because we tend to be larger than women, to be protective of them,” Miller said. “If I were to try to zero in, comic-book-like, on when masculinity went awry, I’d say it was when Rod Stewart sang, ‘You are my lover, you’re my best friend,’ rather than allowing there to be two people in his life who served two very important functions.”
Too bad, ladies. Frank Miller does not want to be your best friend.
Here are some additional highlights from the interview:
‘DELINQUENTS’ #1 FEATURES HOBO KINGS, EXPLODING PRINCESSES, MAPS TATTOOED ON BUTTS – WHY ARE OTHER COMICS EVEN TRYING THIS WEEK?
By Chris Sims
Ever since they were relaunched by Valiant Entertainment, Archer and Armstrong and Quantum and Woody have been two of my favorite books on the market, and it’s no stretch to say that it’s because they take a very similar approach to a classic superhero trope. They’re both the stories of mismatched pairs, buddy comedies that throw in strange conspiracies, bizarre mysteries and wanton destruction into a blender and end up with a smoothie made of highly enjoyable comics. So naturally, it was only a matter of time before they joined forces to form a mismatched pair of mismatched pairs, which is exactly what happens in this week’s first issue of The Delinquents.
And as you might expect, it gets pretty weird. Like, “mysterious treasure map made from the skin of a hobo’s ass” weird.
Plotted by Archer and Armstrong writer Fred Van Lente and Quantum and Woody writer James Asmus, with a script by Asmus and art by Kano, The Delinquents #1 is out this week, and wastes no time getting as strange as it possibly can.
THE ARKHAM SESSIONS: THE PSYCHOLOGY OF THE JOKER & HARLEY, ELECTROSHOCK, AND SUICIDE SQUADDING
The Arkham Sessions is dedicated to the psychology of Batman, so it seems almost like an ethical duty to cover a movie about Arkham Asylum, Gotham City’s mental health facility for the “criminally insane.” In the newly released direct-to-video animated film Batman: Assault on Arkham, a highly-skilled group of assassins and outlaws are called together by Amanda Waller to take part in a risky — possibly life-threatening — mission to infiltrate Arkham Asylum.
Does it help or hurt that members have a history of incarceration, criminal activity, and psychiatric treatment related to lack of moral sense? Perhaps Waller is brilliant to devise a plan that can only succeed via the knowledge and insight of persons who have been through the system.
In this episode of The Arkham Sessions, we gently put aside the VHS and screen a contemporary work from DC Universe Animated. Use the player above to listen to our spoiler-free analysis of Harley Quinn, Deadshot, Captain Boomerang, King Shark, Black Spider, Killer Frost, KB Beast, and, of course the Joker.
‘LAIKA’ CREATOR NICK ABADZIS RETURNS WITH ‘PIGS MIGHT FLY’, A STEAMPUNK ADVENTURE WITH JEREL DYE
By Andy Khouri
Pigs and airships? No, it’s not a new Miyazaki movie — it’s Pigs Might Fly, a new graphic novel, written by Eisner Award-Winning Laika cartoonist Nick Abadzis, and drawn by cartoonist Jerel Dye, coming from First Second in 2016.
According to a summary provided to ComicsAlliance by First Second, Pigs Might Fly is a steampunk tale of high adventure on the grand Pigdom Plains, “a world where science and magic exist alongside one another, of old beliefs versus new, of politics and personalities, of two power blocks confronting one another in a violent prelude to war.”