In today’s edition of Comics Relief, we learn the identity of the man behind the cowl in the new post-Convergence DC Universe, news on some beloved television series making their way to the comics page, and BitTorrent being used to download comics, legally for a change. But first, some sad news about a Marvel Comics great that we lost this week:
Classic Marvel Artist Herbe Trimpe Dies at 75
We start out this Comics Relief on a sad note, with news that legendary comic book artist Herbert “Herbe” Trimpe passed away this week at the age of 75. For many of you younger comics readers out there, the name Herbe Trimpe might not be a familiar one, but if you grew up reading comic books in the 70s and 80s, then there is almost no chance you didn’t come across his artwork.
There wasn’t a major Marvel character he didn’t illustrate, it seems, having done issues of Amazing Spider-Man, The Fantastic Four, Thor, and many others. Most famously however, he drew the first ever appearance of Wolverine in Incredible Hulk #181 back in 1974. But it was the Hulk himself who Trimpe is most associated with, having drawn the Jade Giant for an almost unbroken seven year run. On Twitter, writer Brian Michael Bendis reminded fans of just how important Trimpe was with the tweet below; as Stan Lee would say, ’nuff said.
Photo: Herb Trimpe made the cover of Rolling Stone when it was just about the coolest thing you could do… http://t.co/GFlnPANUKX
— BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (@BRIANMBENDIS) April 14, 2015
Do We Already Know Who Our New Post- Convergence Batman Is?
Ok folks, there be MAJOR SPOILERS in these waters, so if you’re the sensitive type to that sort of thing, skip ahead to the next news item.
Ok, still here? Alrighty then, here we go: It looks like we now know who is going to be taking the mantle of Batman in the DCU post-Convergence, wearing the Chappie-esque, Appleseed-looking armor, and it’s none other than Commissioner James Gordon. Considering that Batman has been replaced by Nightwing and Azrael in the past, this is a story development that actually makes a ton of sense, especially given how much younger Gordon is in the new 52 continuity.
The details of how and why Gordon is the man behind the bat are not yet known, but we are meant to catch our first glimpse of Bat-Gordon in action in May’s Free Comic Book Day offering from DC, with more sure to be revealed in June in Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s Batman #41. As for what happens to Bruce, that is still a mystery… for now. [Bleeding Cool]
New DC Mini-Series Will Give Readers the Backstory on the Arkham Knight Game’s New Villain
While we’re on the subject of the Dark Knight, The Arkham Knight is the villain in the upcoming Batman video game of the same name, but so far, all we know about him is that he has a similar, more military variation on Batman’s costume, and not much else. If you want to know more about the character though, it looks like you’ll need to turn to the comics and not the game, as the origin story of the game’s titular villain will be revealed in an all-new new mini-series.
DC has announced that after the June 3 debut of the Batman: Arkham Knight video game, they will publish a new six-issue series revealing the backstory of the game’s main bad guy titled Batman: Arkham Knight – Genesis, which will debut July 29 and be written by Peter J. Tomasi and drawn by Alisson Borges. Tomasi also happens to be the writer of the current Batman: Arkham Knight limited series, as well as the mainstream DC Universe title Batman & Robin. [IGN]
Dynamite Entertainment Uses BitTorrent for Their Latest Comics Bundle
BitTorrent used to just be the way to steal stuff offline, but they’ve gone mainstream lately, offering up content from music artists and others in an actual legit, legal way. Now Dynamite Comics is using BitTorrent service to offer up a huge bundle of their comics for a great low starting price. (For those not in the know, bundles are huge collections of comics in digital form for a low, usually “pay what you want” price.) While other comic book companies like Dark Horse have been using the bundling to sell comics digitally for awhile, this is the first time a major comics company has used BitTorrent. This is a mega-bundle of 200 comics, with a minimum payment of $6. This bundle runs through Friday, April 17, 2015. That’s only two days left, so better not lag on this deal comics fans. [ComicsBeat]
NBC’s Revolution to Wrap Up Its Storylines in New DC Comics Digital Series
The NBC post-Apocalyptic series Revolution ended it’s network run after two seasons last May, with many questions left dangling in the air. Now in response to passionate fan efforts to revive the show, the entire creative team behind the series — including executive producers Eric Kripke, J.J. Abrams, Bryan Burk, Rockne S. O’Bannon and Jon Favreau — regrouped to create a special four-chapter digital comic book with DC Comics that will serve to continue and ultimately resolve the adventures last seen in Revolution’s second season finale.
Series writers David Reed and Ryan Parrott are handling the writing duties of the digital comic’s four chapters, after breaking the story in the writers’ room along with the rest of the Revolution creative team, which included Kripke, O’Bannon, Paul Grellong, David Rambo, Trey Callaway, Anne Cofell Saunders, Ben Edlund, Matt Pitts and Jim Barnes. Illustrated by artist Angel Hernandez, each of the four separate digital chapters will also have a specially designed cover, and will roll out every two weeks beginning Monday, May 4. The four chapters will each be debuting exclusively on ComicBook.com for one week before being made available for viewing on Revolution’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Revolution.
The Blacklist Coming To Comics This July From Titan
Revolution isn’t the only television series from NBC coming to comics this year, as an adaptation of the successful series The Blacklist is coming to comics, courtesy of British publisher Titan Comics. The comic series will be written by Nichole Phillips and drawn by Beni Lobel (Constantine) and developed in conjunction with the creators of The Blacklist TV series. The first arc (Issues 1-5) will feature stories which expand upon the events of the show, and feature all the major characters, including the formidable Raymond ‘Red’ Reddington, played by James Spader. The first issue hits stores on July 22nd, and issue #1 comes with two covers-an original painted cover of Raymond ‘Red’ Reddington from artist, Alice X Zhang (Doctor Who) and a photo cover with an iconic image of Red. The Blacklist comic will also be available digitally.
Mike Marts Departs Marvel for New Publisher Aftershock
Editor Mike Marts, who has been the editor on Marvel titles like Uncanny X-Men and Guardians of the Galaxy for about a year now (after a stint on DC’s Batman books) has left the publisher to join up with comics industry veteran and former Marvel writer Joe Pruett to start AfterShock comics.
Marts will be the Editor-In-Chief of the new company, where the company’s press release expresses plans to “explore building a shared universe of characters and stories” over time. Many publishers have tried to shared comics universe in the vein of Marvel/DC, with almost all of them failing (I still remember the Ultraverse, Dark Horse’s “Comics Greatest World” and many, many others. Only Valiant really made it.) Hopefully Aftershock will fare better than so many other upstart comic book companies that tried their hand at the shared universe thing, only to vanish some months later. [Deadline]
Got a particular comics-related news item that’s got you excited this week? As always, let us know in the comments below!