It’s the quiet before the storm — the storm being New York Comic Con, that is to say. Expect lots of cool new announcements from the Con, but in the meantime, check out this past week’s assorted comic book news items from around the internet. It’s time for another edition of Comics Relief.
Dynamite Entertainment Acquires James Bond 007 License
Maybe the biggest pre-New York Comic Con news of the week is Dynamite Entertainment‘s acquisition of the worldwide rights to publish James Bond comic books, graphic novels and digital comics starting in 2015. Dynamite’s press release says they plan on publishing both “visual adaptations” of Bond creator Ian Fleming’s original stories, plus new stories, including stories that feature Bond’s pre-Casino Royale origins, as well as “other familiar faces,” both villains and allies, will appear in the new material. “We are excited to build upon Fleming’s source material with new canonical stories, and are honored at Dynamite to be a small part of his legacy, to be able to bring new stories to fans around the world,” added Dynamite CEO and publisher Nick Barrucci. [Bleeding Cool]
Marvel Launches Squirrel Girl Ongoing Series
I’m not 100% sure who’s been asking for a Squirrel Girl ongoing series, but it if it’s you, then you’re in luck; The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl is coming next January from writer Ryan North and artist Erica Henderson. In the new series, uses her squirrel powers to stop villains like Doctor Doom and Thanos (actually, she’s already fought those guys and won. Don’t mess with Squirrel Girl.) [Comic Book Resources]
Valiant Comics Announces “Valiant Next” Initiative
In anticipation of this weekend’s New York Comic Con, Valiant Entertainment is proud to announce Valiant Next – an all-new wave of ongoing series and prestige format projects from some of the premier creative talents in comics today. Beginning in December with The Valiant #1 (of 4) by Jeff Lemire, Matt Kindt, and Paolo Rivera, it all continues with five blockbuster new series in 2015: Ivar, Timewalker #1 by Fred Van Lente and Clayton Henry in January, Divinity #1 (of 4) by Matt Kindt and Trevor Hairsine in February, Imperium #1 by Joshua Dysart and Doug Braithwaite in February, Ninjak #1 by Matt Kindt and Clay Mann in March, and Bloodshot Reborn #1 by Jeff Lemire and Mico Suayan in April. This initiative will present six new starting points perfect for readers new and old. Featuring an exciting selection of new series starring Valiant’s biggest, most-demanded heroes alongside all-new, never before seen characters.
Earlier this year, it was rumored that Marvel planned to cancel the founding Marvel Universe title The Fantastic Four, said to be an effort to spite Twentieth Century Fox, who own the Fantastic Four movie license. According to website Bleeding Cool, Hachette Book Group, Marvel’s distributor in the bookstore world, has listed a Fantastic Four Vol. 4: The End is Fourever collected edition by current creative team James Robinson and Leonard Kirk, with a release date of June 30, 2015. In the product description it says that the book will contain the “Triple Sized Final Issue 645.”
Of course, just because it’s the final issue of the current run doesn’t mean it won’t be brought back (there’s no way that at some point, it won’t) But it seems that when Fox’ new Fantastic Four reboot hits theaters in 2015, there’s a good chance that Marvel won’t have an FF comic on the shelves, and that can’t be a coincidence.
Comixology Launches Image Comics “New Hits” Bundle and First Issue Sale
Image Comics has become home to some of the most critically acclaimed comic books of the last several years, and several of the newer Image books like Southern Bastards, The Wicked + The Divine, Velvet, Burn the Orphanage and several more are having their first few issues dropped down to 99 cents each on comiXology. There are several other first issues included, like Shutter, Fuse and C.O.W.L, but the sale only lasts till Friday October 10th, so you might want to jump on this one now.
Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Superman Co-Creator Joe Shuster’s Family’s Case
Although the estate of the late Jack Kirby reached a settlement with Marvel last week, this week the heirs of Superman co-creator Joe Shuster were dealt a less favorable result. On Monday, October 6th, the Court released a list of all the cases that it declined to hear in this session, and the list includes the case of the family of Superman co-creator Joe Shuster. The decision upholds the ruling of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which stated that Shuster’s nephew had no ownership claim on the character. The Shuster estate gave up its claims to Superman in a 1992 agreement that gave the family a $600,000 payout and a $25,000 annual pension (which, considering the massive amounts of money brought in each year by Superman merchandise, doesn’t seem nearly enough.) Speaking of Superman…
Superman “Scores” T-Shirt Given An Overhaul By Artist Bill Sienkiewicz
Remember the totally sexist t-shirts featuring DC characters that everyone (including yours truly) made a big stink about last week? The ones where Superman “Does it again” and “scores” Wonder Woman? Well, veteran comic book artist Bill Sienkiewicz didn’t like it all that much either, and offered a “corrected” image for the back of the shirt via his Facebook page.
[via Gene Ha/Twitter]
Grant Morrison’s Latest Comes To Black Mask Studios
Grant Morrison is getting ready to bring his long gestating movie project Sinatoro to comics, via Black Mask Studios, with artist Vanessa Del Ray. Sinatoro is about a man with no past and no memories who is the sole survivor of a car crash in the American desert. The comic will be an adaptation of Morrison’s screenplay for the film. In the Hollywood Reporter piece, Morrison said that he decided to bring it to comics while he “figures out how to work a manageable take for an adaptation” due to the story’s massive scope that would have been cost prohibitive as a feature film. The first issue arrives in April 2015.
Itty Bitty Hellboy Returns at Dark Horse
The art/writing duo of Arthur Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, better known simply as “Art and Franco”, is bringing back Itty Bitty Hellboy as part of a new all-ages series of Itty Bitty comics from Dark Horse. The series kicks off in November with the publication of Itty Bitty Mask. Much as Art and Franco did with the Teen Titans and Young Justice characters for DC with Tiny Titans, Itty Bitty Hellboy will be a pint-sized version of Hellboy and his supporting cast as they get into all kinds of trouble. What began last year as three issue mini-series that was quickly expanded into five, and will now be expanded into even more. And stay tuned for more Itty Bitty announcements coming from Dark Horse this weekend from New York City Comic-Con.
What do you think of today’s top stories? Let us know in the comments below or tell me on Twitter (@GeekBoyEric).