Time for your weekend edition of Comics Relief, and we’ve got plenty to cover in today’s column, so let’s get started on a bit of happy news for fans of Deadpool. Read on for the full story.
Manga-inspired artist Adam Warren takes on Deadpool
Former Dirty Pair, Gen 13, and Empowered creator Adam Warren is coming back to Marvel for the upcoming Deadpool Annual #1, which is set to hit your local comic shops in September. Marvel has announced that Warren will be both writing and drawing a 10-page standalone story in addition to the main story by previously solicited team.
On the downside, Deadpool Annual #1 has been pushed back from its original September 14 release date to September 28. The main story, by the creative team of Gerry Duggan & Brian Posehn, features the long lost pilot episode of “Deadpool and His Insufferable Pals”, a spoof on the ’80s cartoon Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends. [Newsarama]
Frank Cho Goes from Rebirth to Reborn
Artist Frank Cho, known for his drawings of, shall we say, healthy and robust women, got into a bit of a disagreement with current Wonder Woman writer Greg Rucka about how he portrayed the Amazon princess on the series’ variant covers, which led him to only completing six of the twenty-four variant covers for the current Rebirth: Wonder Woman series. But don’t cry for Frank Cho — writer Mark Millar and artist Greg Capullo have brought on Mr.Cho as the cover artist for their new creator owned sci-fi/fantasy series Reborn. Hopefully, Reborn will suit Frank Cho’s talents more than Rebirth did. You can check out an early preview of Cho’s Reborn cover above. [Bleeding Cool]
Rebirth puts DC back on top of the sales charts
This time last year, it’s fair to say DC Comics was struggling. Their DC YOU rebranding didn’t really click with readers, and a lot of longtime fans, many who were put off by the New 52 in the first place, started leaving in droves. But what a difference a year makes. Thanks to the big DC Rebirth initiative that began in May, DC is back on top in a big way. The sales figures for the month of July are in, and DC Comics is on top of Diamond’s Direct Market sales for the first time since September 2013.
According to data released by Diamond Comic Distributors this week, DC’s Rebirth titles accounted for eight of the Top Ten selling comic books in July, led by Justice League #1 along with titles like New Super-Man #1, Batman, Nightwing, and Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps. Marvel entered the Top 10 only with the third and fourth issues of Civil War II. Of course, Marvel has Marvel NOW! coming, so don’t count them out for too long. They’re not used to being in second place after all. [ComicChron]
Dark Horse Comics supports the Hero Initiative
Dark Horse Comics is celebrating three decaded in the comics business this year, and as a part of the celebration, the publisher is offering a Humble Bundle with over $600 worth of digital comics at a pay-what-you-want price to help raise money for the Hero Initiative. Among the comics included in this bundle are titles such as Hellboy, Mass Effect, Alien vs. Predator and a whole lot more. You can check out the Dark Horse Comics 30th Anniversary bundle by clicking here. [Bleeding Cool]
Marvel’s Mark Gruenwald honored with charity auction
Younger readers might not know his name, but if you grew up reading Marvel Comics in the ’80s, then a name you saw on a regular basis was Mark Gruenwald. He wrote lengthy runs on Captain America, Thor, Quasar, and many other titles, was an occasional penciler, and Marvel’s executive editor for a time. He sadly passed away at the young age of 43 from a heart attack back in 1996.
Now twenty years later, his widow has partnered with others in the auction of a unique piece of art commemorating him. The organization CharityBuzz is now auctioning off a piece by artist David Banegas done in Gruenwald’s honor, titled “20 Years Tribute to Mark Gruenwald, Mr. Marvel.” All proceeds will go to the University of Wisconsin’s Oshkosh Foundation, and a scholarship set-up in Gruenwald’s name. You can see a video on the creation of the piece above: [Newsarama]
DC’s Prez Returns for Election Special in November
Despite being one the critical darlings of last year’s DC YOU rebranding at DC Comics, Prez–the revival of the 1970s satirical comic about a teenage president of the United States–won’t be coming back for another long term in office. Originally there was an announced six-issue follow up to last year’s six-part series, with original writer/artist team of Mark Russell and artist Ben Caldwell, but now the political satire will conclude with a 12-page special in November.
Prez was set in the not-too-distant future, and centered on a teenager named Beth Ross who becomes internet famous because of an awkward online photo that goes viral. She then unexpectedly receives enough votes via Twitter to pick up a several electoral votes, and next thing you know, she becomes President of the United States. Back in 2015, the idea that someone who is a celebrity for dubious reasons could then take that fame and parlay it into a bid for the presidency seemed silly and fun. Turns out that Mark Russell and Ben Caldwell were like Nostradamus. [CBR]
Florida comics retailer gets missing $85,000 comic collection returned safely
In the most recent Comics Relief, we reported the sad story of a Florida comics retailer named Rick Whitelock, who had some $85,000 dollars worth of rare comics stolen from him at a convention in his home state. Among those was the first appearance of Spider-Man in Amazing Fantasy #15 (seriously, Florida…get your act together here soon). Luckily, this story has a happy ending, because as soon as the story began to circulate, Whitelock received an anonymous phone call from a man who said he had the box in his possession.
It seems he was another exhibitor, and said that the box turned up while he was unloading his own merchandise from the convention. Whitelock told the Tampa Bay Times “He saw my sticker that says New Force Comics, so he Googled us. He freaked out when he did, because he saw all these news stories talking about stolen comic books.” The box was then Fed-Exed to Whitelock, who one assumes can now sleep peacfully…and won’t let those comics out of his sight ever again. [CBR]
Images: DC Comics/ Marvel Comics / Dark Horse Comics / Image Comics / Greg Capullo