Welcome fangirls and fanboys to the weekend edition of Comics Relief! In today’s edition, we’ve got more details on Marvel’s big universe shattering Secret Wars, the latest rumors of a move away from San Diego for Comic-Con, and information on how you can help a classic Batman artist in his hour of need. But before all that, we’ve got some news on an comics imprint from the 1990s looking to make a return in 2015…
Milestone Media Ready To Make A Comeback
Back during the big comic book boom of the early ’90s, late writer Dwayne McDuffie (Justice League Unlimited) helped launch Milestone Media as a way to to better represent minorities in the comics industry. Published as a brand within DC Comics, Milestone launched titles like Icon, Xombi, Hardware, and most notably, Static Shock, which would go on to get an animated series and show up regularly in the DC Universe years later.
At the wake for Dwayne McDuffie, who died suddenly at age 49 in 2011, Milestone co-founders Derek Dingle and Denys Cowan, along with writer-producer Reginald Hudlin decided it was time to continue the legacy of Milestone. According to Reginald Hudlin, founder Derek Dingle said,”It’s been too long. We’ve got to restart the company,” and are now planning on bringing Milestone back. And they don’t want to bring them back just to comics, but a variety of media, since superheroes are now everywhere. They plan to reveal their plans at this year’s San Diego Comic Con, but it sounds that the partnership with DC might be a thing of the past, and Milestone 2.0 would be striking out on their own. [Washington Post]
More Secret Wars Details Emerge From Marvel
By now I’m sure you’re aware of the big news, that Marvel’s enormous Secret Wars event series will result in an all-new Marvel Universe. But Marvel has been quieter than Black Bolt in regards to details of what a lot of this means. Earlier this week we mentioned Marvel revealed the title “All-New, All-Different Avengers” – and not much else but the title. Now we know that Marvel’s second Free Comic Book Day book is in fact going to be All-New, All-Different Avengers #1, giving readers a glimpse into what the Marvel Universe will look like post-Secret Wars. The creative team of this line-up is being kept under lock and key.
Marvel also revealed three banners for various series set during Secret Wars; first off is Last Days, which will feature stories in which Marvel “heroes face impending obliteration” as the clock ticks down on the Marvel Universe. Next is Battleworld, which is last remaining bit of reality in the Marvel Multiverse, a patchwork world made up of what’s left of the destroyed universes. The titles which carry the Battleworld name will feature wars between the various sectors. Warzones! branded titles (yes, the exclamation point is part of it) will be unique from the others because they are going to focus on stories set inside one of the patchworld sectors of Battleworld, instead of crossing over with other sectors. Check out the banners for each branding below: [Newsarama]
More Rumors Emerge About Comic-Con Moving Away From San Diego
This rumor seems to come around every few months, and now it’s gaining traction again. With plans for an expansion of the San Diego Convention Center stalled, if not outright cancelled, other cities in Southern California are looking to get their hands on the biggest pop culture convention in the world. SDCC organizers are now considering suitors, including Los Angeles and Anaheim, as they weigh the option of signing a contract to stay in San Diego after this year’s con or find a new home.
David Glanzer, spokesman for Comic-Con International, said “The proposals we’ve received are pretty amazing; It’s not an easy decision.” Comic-Con has made its home in San Diego for over forty years, and the city is said to be bending over backwards to keep the con at its original home. We’ll know probably within a year whether or not they succeed. [Los Angeles Times]
Venom Get’s A Sci-Fi Redesign As He Joins Up With The Guardians of the Galaxy
Long gone are the days when Venom was Spider-Man’s fan-favorite nemesis; he’s not even Eddie Brock anymore (maybe you can blame Spider-Man 3 for that tarnished reputation) For the last few years, he’s been Flash Thompson, Peter Parker’s former high school bully turned ally. Well now Venom is joining up with the Guardians of the Galaxy, and Marvel debuted his all-new look in this week’s issue of Guardians of the Galaxy.
Artist Valerio Schiti had this to say about the reasons behind the brand-new design for Venom: “I suppose that the main reason for this change is the new readers—at least that’s what Brian Bendis said! The new generations of readers have a totally different idea of Venom; most of them don’t even know that once he was a bad guy. In this moment nobody perceives him like a monster, everybody knows that he’s a hero, a good guy with a super cool costume that can do amazing things so why don’t we concentrate on them? Brian noticed that new way of thinking about the character and imagined this totally different version. And everybody knows that if there’s someone with a great intuition for what is cool, that man is Brian Michael Bendis.” [Marvel.com]
Norm Breyfogle’s Batman Beyond Art Up For Auction
Last month we reported the sad news that Batman artist Norm Breyfogle suffered a serious stroke and was hospitalized. According to Breyfogle’s family, the famed Batman artist has no health insurance and a savings eaten away by his hospital stay. To make matters worse, he still requires months of care and physical therapy at a nursing home. Now writer Adam Beechen is auctioning a piece of original cover art for Batman Beyond, signed by Breyfogle, with all proceeds going to help Breyfogle. Beechen and Breyfogle worked together on the digital-first DC Comics series. The cover features Batman and the Metal Men, and was used for digital chapters 24-26 and printed in the 2014 collection “Batgirl Begins.”
Breyfogle’s family has launched a fundraising campaign to help with their brother’s medical bills with a goal of $200,000, but have only received $75,000 so far, so they are extending the fundraising campaign. Opening bid for the cover art is $350, with all proceeds going to Breyfogle’s continuing medical care. The eBay auction ends Jan. 30. [Comic Book Resources]
Marvel Offers Special Subscription Deal For All Three New Star Wars Series
Star Wars is back in a big way at Marvel, and now for those fans who are looking to subscribe to all three new series- Star Wars, Darth Vader and the upcoming Princess Leia– Marvel is offering a special bulk discount on three 12-issue subscriptions, which would save readers over 40% cover price when you subscribe to all three current Marvel Star Wars series. You can click on this link for the special deal.
Classic Disney Characters Heading To IDW
When the Walt Disney Company purchased Lucasfilm, it was pretty much an immediate assumption that Marvel would take the Star Wars license, and keep everything “in house” – and they did. Interestingly, the Disney characters aren’t heading to Disney-owned Marvel Comics, but IDW instead. The new line will launch with April’s Uncle Scrooge #1, followed in May with a new Donald Duck series, with Mickey Mouse and Walt Disney Comics and Stories debuting in June and July. Marvel does own the rights to material based on Disney theme park properties however, while publisher Joe’s Books publishes titles based on recent animated movies including Frozen and Big Hero 6. [Hollywood Reporter]
Archie Comics Launches Their First Ever Humble Bundle
Archie Comics is the latest publisher to launch their own Humble Bundle, supporting the Hero Initiative and the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. The Archie Comics Humble Bundle collects over a dozen titles appealing to readers of all ages, with a collection that’s valued at over $149, and features characters like Archie, Betty, Veronica, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man.
Humble Bundle’s unique “name your price” system allows customers to choose their own price for the bundle. As with all Humble Bundles, customers can choose how their money is allocated, between the publisher and charities. The Humble Archie Comics Bundle supports The Hero Initiative, which creates a financial safety net for comic creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work, as well as the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, a non-profit organization that protects the freedom to read comics through legal action and education initiatives in support of the readers, creators, librarians, retailers, publishers, and educators of comics. The Humble Archie Comics Bundle runs from now until Wednesday, February 4, 2015 at 2 p.m. EST time. [Newsarama]
Excited about Marvel’s Secret Wars, or any of the other news items we’ve covered? Let us know in the comments below!