Tag: Black Mask Studios

High Profile Comics Creators Band Together To Support Hollywood Workers With GENERAL STRIKE Comic

High Profile Comics Creators Band Together To Support Hollywood Workers With GENERAL STRIKE Comic

WGA Members/Comic Creators GRANT MORRISON, MATTEO PIZZOLO, and BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS join forces with TV Writers behind THE BOYS, DAREDEVIL, and WINNING TIME for new comic book Celebrating the Power and Success of the Strikes

Pre-orders open today for GENERAL STRIKE, the new comic that will help support workers impacted by the Hollywood Labor Strikes

PRESS RELEASE:

(September 26, 2023) A new comics anthology curated by the creators of CALEXIT aims to celebrate the Hollywood Labor Movement’s massive success and also support workers impacted by the dual Strikes as the WGA closes its historic new deal with the studios. Titled GENERAL STRIKE: Calexit and Other Tales of Fighting the Good Fight, the collection of new stories dedicated to the struggle for economic equality is written by WGA members, and publisher Black Mask Studios is matching the writers fees with donations to the Entertainment Community Fund.

With official pre-orders opening today, GENERAL STRIKE is hosted by a brand new comic book heroine (labor organizing badass Gen. Strike) and features stories by a roster of WGA-writers including writer/producer/WGA NBCU Lot Coordinator Judalina Neira (The Boys, Gen V, The Flash), Rodney Barnes (Winning Time, The Boondocks), Tamara Becher (Doom Patrol, Daredevil), Daniel Dominguez (Seis Manos), Charley Feldman (X-Men 97, Teen Titans Go), Grant Morrison (Happy!, All-Star Superman), and Brian Michael Bendis (creator of Miles Morales and Jessica Jones). The project is being run by WGA-member writer and publisher Matteo Pizzolo (Calexit, Godkiller, Rogue State).

“Our initial idea was to put together an anthology of new stories set in the world of Calexit, but, when we proposed that to the creators, they envisioned using Calexit as a launchpad for something bigger that could help support the community through the strikes,” explained Pat Shand, head of Black Mask Special Projects. “And that’s how General Strike came together.”

GENERAL STRIKE is an anthology comic of genre stories about characters fighting the good fight against injustice, linked by the theme of confronting economic inequality. All of the stories are written by striking guild members. In addition to paying Marvel/DC-level writers’ rates, Black Mask is also matching the writers’ rates with donations to the Entertainment Community Fund, and the creators retain ownership of the IP to their stories and characters.

“With the longest running dual-strikes in Hollywood history reaching a crescendo, this is an amazing moment to celebrate the power and solidarity that got us here and also to keep telling stories that inspire us to fight these good fights,” said Calexit writer/co-creator Matteo Pizzolo, who is overseeing GENERAL STRIKE. “The WGA and SAG strikes are part of the bigger labor movements growing across the country and around the world, but they’re also unique because they focus on creative artists – the public outpouring of support we’ve seen here hasn’t always been the case with past Hollywood strikes. It’s really inspiring and we’re hoping this project can honor that and also support the workers who are still struggling due to the impact of the strikes.”

Comics’ newest superhero Gen. Strike, a bubblegum-chewing labor organizer, comes to life in a set of covers by comic book artists Tyler Boss (4 Kids Walk Into A Bank, What’s The Furthest Place From Here?), Iolanda Zanfardino (Alice In Leatherland), Ben Templesmith (30 Days Of Night), Ramon Villalobos (America Chavez), Creees Lee (Lab Raider), Elisa Romboli (A Thing Called Truth), Amancay Nahuelpan (Calexit), and Darick Robertson (The Boys).

Artists illustrating the GENERAL STRIKE stories include Antonio Fuso (Something Is Killing The Children: House Of Slaughter), Jamal Igle (BLACK, The Wrong Earth), Butch Mapa (Star Wars Adventures), Tyler Jenkins (Grass Kings), and Josh Hood (We Can Never Go Home).

“For 148 days, WGA writers have been pencils down/picket signs up. But I’m stoked to pick up the pen again as a part of GENERAL STRIKE. Black Mask is serving up allyship with this comic anthology benefitting Hollywood’s not-for-profit lifesaver – the Entertainment Community Fund,” said Judalina Neira, Writer/Executive Producer (The Boys, Gen V, The Flash).

“This is a pivotal moment for our business and it’s projects like this that show our solidarity in the most difficult of circumstances,” said Rodney Barnes (Winning Time, The Boondocks).

“This strike isn’t just about writers in Hollywood, it’s about the exploitation of labor. As a proud member of the WGA and a recipient of Strike Fund assistance, I jumped at the chance to participate in this anthology,” said Tamara Becher (Doom Patrol, Star Wars: The Bad Batch, Daredevil).

“Indie comics are special because risky and subversive stories and fresh, new characters can be created without a lot of meddling,” Pizzolo said on the standing-room-only Activism In Comics panel at San Diego Comic Con. “In comics, creators can be especially daring and vulnerable and create visual rallying cries because it’s such a personal medium, just a couple of creators working unfettered to make a story you can hold in your hands.”

The creators of Calexit have a long history of using their comic for activism. Previous initiatives include raising money for families separated at the U.S.-Mexico border during the Trump Administration’s Border Crisis, running voter registration on the showfloor of San Diego Comic Con, supporting Indivisible’s Get Out The Vote campaign, donating to bail funds during the George Floyd protests, featuring interviews with organizers and grassroots candidates in the comic book’s backmatter, and using comic profits to form the SuperPAC “Become The Government.”


For more info and how to support this project visit the Kickstarter project page.

New Number Ones: New Comic Series Coming in December 2022

New Number Ones: New Comic Series Coming in December 2022

2022 is almost over. We here at PCS hope is has been a good year for you. In this column, we have compiled an alphabetical list with cover art and the official solicitation text from the publishers of some of the cool new comics that are coming out this month. Check below for our PCS NOTES to find out what we just have to tell you about the new comics in question.

This month, we have books on the list from: DC Comics, Marvel Comics, AfterShock Comics, Image Comics, Boom! Studios, Dynamite Entertainment, Dark Horse Comics, IDW Publishing, Frank Miller Presents, and Black Mask Studios.

In some months we get five weeks of great comics. This month as the year crawls to an end, the first two weeks of the month have a bunch of cool and interesting new books but then it winds down in the last two weeks. That is mostly function of publishers being aware of the economic disruption in retail purchasing due to the Christmas holiday season and that they hold back new releases for the new year to begin.

We will bring you reviews of these debut issues as they come out, and don’t forget to use the comments section to let us know what you think of this list.

You will find the books listed below in the order of when they are released.

Week of 12/7/22
Week of 12/14/22
Week of 12/21/22
Week of 12/28/22


Week of December 7


All Against All #1
Image Comics
Written by Alex Paknadel
Art by Caspar Wijngaard
Cover Art by Wijngaard

Writer ALEX PAKNADEL, artist CASPAR WIJNGAARD, and letterer HASSAN OTSMANE-ELHAOU present a primal vision of humanity gone terribly wrong.

In All Against All, it is the distant future. Earth is long gone, but a race of alien conquerors knows as “the Operators” have preserved its most savage animals in an artificial jungle environment they barely understand.

With no bodies of their own, the Operators move from world to world, harvesting bodies for the organic exosuits they use to wage their endless wars. Ignored and underestimated by his captors is the habitat’s sole human specimen, Helpless.

However, when their efforts to find and harvest an apex predator intensify, he gives them far more than they bargained for.

Featuring variant covers by artistic powerhouses as SEAN PHILLIPS, MARTIN SIMMONDS, and CHRISTIAN WARD!

Release Date: December 7, 2022

PCS NOTES: This book is one of our most anticipated books of the month. Having had a sneek peak at it, we are confident it will be a big hit.


Frank Miller’s Pandora #1
Frank Miller Presents
Written by Anthony Maranville & Chris Silvestri
Art by Emma Kubert
Cover Art by Kubert

What if you could have everything you ever wanted, but it was at everyone else’s expense?

Drawn to a mystic Relic that can deliver all her heart’s desires, Anabeth Dean uses this power in an attempt to recreate the world and fill her empty life with friendship and love. But power comes at a price and her “perfect new world” is replacing the real world around us. Anabeth now has all she’s ever wanted, but her better place is an invasion, and she’s the gateway to the end of the world. Only she can stop it, but to do so, she must sacrifice everything she loves…

A new Young Adult Fantasy, created by Frank Miller – with art by new sensation Emma (Inkblot) Kubert, and script by Anthony Maranville and Chris Silvestri (Star Trek Discovery) – tbhis is the latest book in the great line of titles from Frank Miller Presents.

Release Date: December 7, 2022

PCS NOTES: FMP is making an impression and we are excited to see Emma Kubert on the art duties for this book. She is excellent.

Continue reading “New Number Ones: New Comic Series Coming in December 2022”

New Number Ones: New Comics Series Coming in October 2022

New Number Ones: New Comics Series Coming in October 2022

October is here. It is every ghouls favorite month. In this column, we have compiled an alphabetical list with cover art and the official solicitation text from the publishers of some of the cool new comics that are coming out this month. Check below for our PCS NOTES to find out what we just have to tell you about the new comics in question.

This month, we have books on the list from: DC Comics, Marvel Comics, AfterShock Comics, Image Comics, Boom! Studios, IDW Publishing, Dynamite Entertainment, Dark Horse Comics, Top Cow Productions, Vault Comics, Mad Cave Comics, and Black Mask Studios.

One of the trends that we noticed with this month’s new release is that there are quite a few cartoonists taking on the writing and art chores in their projects. We are excited to see the results of those books and wish the creators great success!

We will bring you reviews of these debut issues as they come out, and don’t forget to use the comments section to let us know what you think of this list.

You will find the books listed below in the order of when they are released.

Week of 10/5/22
Week of 10/12/22
Week of 10/19/22
Week of 10/26/22


Week of October 5


3Keys #1
Image Comics
Written by David Messina
Art by Messina
Cover Art by Messina

Han Solo artist DAVID MESSINA invites you to explore the mysterious world of 3KEYS!

Did the inhabitants of another dimension flee into our reality to save themselves from the terrible wrath of the Great Old Ones…or to help prepare us for a final devastating invasion? And what if humanity’s only chance against these Great Old Ones is an impetuous, mischievous young woman and her sardonic, furry, and surprisingly violent mentor?

All questions are asked and answered in this five-part introduction to writer and artist DAVID MESSINA’s epic, apocalyptic universe, featuring 27 full story pages!

Release Date: October 5, 2022

PCS NOTES: This has an interesting premise and we are confident in the art being amazing.


Dark Ride #1
Image Comics
Written by Joshua Williamson
Art by Andrei Bressan & Adriano Lucas
Cover Art by Bressan

Devil Land has been the world’s premiere horror-themed amusement park for over 50 years, home to the scariest ride ever created – The Devil’s Due. But when lifelong fan Owen Seasons begins his first day on the job, he will discover the true horrors happening behind the scenes, the truth about the park’s reclusive creator Arthur Dante and that the job of his dreams might just be a living nightmare.

Release Date: October 5, 2022

PCS NOTES: The Birthright team looks for a second hit, and we are looking forward to it.


Earthdivers #1
IDW Publishing
Written by Stephen Graham Jones
Art by Davide Gianfelice
Cover Art by Rafael Albuquerque

Stephen Graham Jones makes his ongoing comics debut with Earthdivers! The year is 2112, and it’s the apocalypse exactly as expected: rivers receding, oceans rising, civilization crumbling. Humanity has given up hope, except for a group of outcast Indigenous survivors who have discovered a time travel portal in a cave in the middle of the desert and figured out where the world took a sharp turn for the worst: America. Convinced that the only way to save the world is to rewrite its past, they send one of their own on a bloody, one-way mission back to 1492 to kill Christopher Columbus before he reaches the so-called New World. But taking down an icon is no easy task, and his actions could prove devastating for his friends in the future.

Release Date: October 5, 2022

PCS NOTES: This is a great first issue. It is the start of something big. Continue reading “New Number Ones: New Comics Series Coming in October 2022”

New Number Ones: New Comics Titles Coming in June 2021

New Number Ones: New Comics Titles Coming in June 2021

This month we give our readers a list of the exciting new comic book series debuting in June. We have compiled an alphabetical list with cover art and the official solicitation text from the publishers. Check below for our PCS NOTES to find out what we just have to tell you about the new comics in question.

There are a bunch of great new and interesting series starting this month from AfterShock Comics, Boom! Studios, DC Comics, Dark Horse Comics, Vault Comics, Image Comics, Marvel Comics, Scout Comics, and Black Mask Studios.

There are a few one-shot comics on this list. We usually stay away from those and stick to ongoing or mini-series, but these are too good to ignore.

We will bring you reviews of most of these debut issues as they come out, and don’t forget to use the comments section to let us know what you think of this list.

You will find the books listed below in the order of when they are released.

Week of 6/2/21
Week of 6/9/21
Week of 6/16/21
Week of 6/23/21
Week of 6/30/21


Week of June 2


Basilisk #1
Boom! Studios
Written by Cullen Bunn
Art by Jonas Scharf
Cover Art by Scharf

Who Can Stop The Chimera?

Five individuals bound by a cult-like hivemind, they terrorized small towns with their horrifying supernatural sense-based powers, leaving death and destruction in their wake.

Regan, one of the Chimera, escaped and has been in hiding, with her murderous eyes bound, overcome with guilt.

Until now… when a victim from her past forces her to hunt down the other four of her kind.

New York Times bestselling horror writer Cullen Bunn and artist Jonas Scharf reunite to unleash a supernatural horror series for fans of Killadelphia and Stillwater rooted in the way we process the world – our senses.

Release Date: June 2, 2021

PCS NOTES: Let’s start out with a bang. The super-prolific Cullen Bunn leads off this month’s list with an intriguing new story. Don’t think this is Mr. Bunn’s only entry on this list.


Cherry Blackbird #1
Scout Comics
Written by Joseph Schmalke
Art by Schmalke
Cover Art by Schmalke

Rockstar Cherry Blackbird sold her soul for fame. Now at the age of 26, time is running short. The day she turns 27, she’ll be dragged to Hell. But Cherry is not one to go quietly. The Devil tasks her with collecting seven demonic souls that have escaped the Abyss. If she can do this before her next birthday, she’ll be released from her infernal pact and spared eternal damnation. Heaven help anyone who gets in her way!

Release Date: June 2, 2021

PCS NOTES: We are excited to get our hands on this Joseph Schmalke effort.

Continue reading “New Number Ones: New Comics Titles Coming in June 2021”

New Number Ones: Comics Coming in March 2021

New Number Ones: Comics Coming in March 2021

This month we give our readers a list of the exciting new comic book series debuting in March. We have compiled an alphabetical list with cover art and the official solicitation text from PREVIEWSworld. Check below for our PCS NOTES to find out what we just have to tell you about the new comics in question.

There are a bunch of great new and interesting series starting this month from AfterShock Comics, Boom! Studios, DC Comics, Dark Horse Comics, Oni Press, Image Comics, Marvel Comics, AWA/Upshot Studios, and Bad Idea Comics.

There are a lot more new series starting this month from both DC and Marvel than we are used to. The Infinite Frontier initiative from DC Comics is bringing with it some new numbering to existing series, returning series that have been out of publication for a while, and a few brand new titles.

Marvel on the other hand is launching some interesting new series with lower star quality existing characters that seem pretty interesting.

Also of note, March has a magical fifth Wednesday. So this list is supersized because there are five weeks of new comics this month.

We will bring you reviews of most of these debut issues as they come out, and don’t forget to use the comments section to let us know what you think of this list.

You will find the books listed below in the order of when they are released.

Week of 3/3/21
Week of 3/10/21
Week of 3/17/21
Week of 3/24/21
Week of 3/31/21


Week of March 3rd

America Chavez: Made in the USA #1
Marvel Comics
Written by Kalinda Vazquez
Art by Carlos Gomez & Jesus Aburtov
Cover Art by Sara Pichelli & Tamra Bonvillain

WHO IS AMERICA? America Chavez is incredible — her origins, her strength, her dimension-shattering star portals! But when the foundation of everything she believes is shaken, America will stand up and face the parts of herself she’s been running from. From writer Kalinda Vazquez and artist Carlos Gomez comes an explosive, brand-new story all about what made America Chavez who she is — and what she’ll do to protect the ones she loves.

Release Date: March 3, 2021

 


Chariot #1
AWA / Upshot Studios
Written by Brian Edward Hill
Art by Priscilla Petraites & Marco Lesko
Cover Art by Jeff Dekal

The Chariot was a Cold War-era secret government project to provide its star agent with a weapon unlike any other in the form of a supercharged muscle car. It sank into the ocean decades ago, and the agent along with it. Now, a petty criminal looking to reform his life has stumbled upon the Chariot, and he’s about to find out that the agent’s consciousness is still controlling it in this synthwave thriller.

Release Date: March 3, 2021

PCS NOTES: AWA continues to bring us high quality creatives with interesting story concepts.


Crime Syndicate #1
DC Comics
Written by Andy Schmidt
Art by Kieran McKeown & Bryan Hitch
Cover Art by Jim Cheung

Spinning out of the pages of Dark Nights: Death Metal, the Multiverse is reborn — and Earth-3 with it! In this six-issue miniseries, witness the true origins of the malevolent makers of mayhem known as the Crime Syndicate as a common foe unites them! But how long can alliances last between villains like these? Also in this issue, it’s the origin of Ultraman in our special backup story drawn by superstar artist Bryan Hitch!

Release Date: March 3, 2021

PCS NOTES: I am not typically a fan of “villain books” but I want to see what Andy Schmidt has in mind. Continue reading “New Number Ones: Comics Coming in March 2021”

With Further Ado #88: Nimble Innovation

With Further Ado #88: Nimble Innovation

I wish this was an April’s Fools story, but it is not.

In Mike Gold’s column here on Monday, Brainiac on Banjo, he talked about how comic shops, like so many other businesses, are struggling during the surreal new reality that the Coronavirus has unleashed. It’s a scary time for these entrepreneurs.

But we need to keep business issues and life-threatening issues in perspective.  We’re just a few weeks into it. Public figures are now contracting the virus, and many of us now know real people who have contracted it. I have two friends fighting the good fight against COVID-19 in the hospital right now. One’s outlook is pretty grim, I am afraid.

So my heart aches in so many ways. The prospect of a collapse, or at best a terrible shakeout of Geek Culture is one the scary things of which I am fearful. USA TODAY even noticed. They started a recent article with a look at a fanboy turned retailer in Pennsylvania:

YORK, Pa. – Brian Waltersdorff has been strolling the aisles of Comic Store West in York, Pennsylvania,  since 1986. He was the store’s first customer.

Fast forward 22 years, he found himself buying a portion of ownership into the store. This past January, he bought out his partners for sole ownership of his childhood comic book shop. 

“First-year businesses always have problems. I didn’t think it would happen (here),” he said. “But here we are.” 

Waltersdorff is one of several comic book shop owners across the country who are battling an unprecedented level of uncertainty caused by the coronavirus outbreak

The restrictions on movement have been catastrophic for him – as they have for most small business owners. However, the comic book industry is navigating a different sea of change: its main supplier has completely shut down its distribution chain.

 

Comic Shops, have, for the most part, been run and owned by strong-willed entrepreneurs who have financially skated near the edge. Likewise, publishers and companies that create Geek Culture ephemera have done the same.

In that column this past Monday, Mike Gold wrote, “Only a very few publishers are owned by massive mega-corporations such as AT&T, Amazon, and Disney. The rest are owned by very hard working Mom ’n’ Pop cockroach capitalists who depend upon these shops.”

TwoMorrows Publishing wrote candidly about how tough it is to sell magazines when your distributor and retailer outlets are closed.  So they are offering a 40% sale to keep the lights on. Continue reading “With Further Ado #88: Nimble Innovation”

With Further Ado #84: It’s a Noir World … or … I See Red Door and I Want to Paint It Noir

With Further Ado #84: It’s a Noir World … or … I See Red Door and I Want to Paint It Noir

Nothing’s ever really black and white. Except for movies. So many of my favorites are black and white. And so many of my favorite black and white movies are Film Noir thrillers. You know the type, those sleek and stylish old time Hollywood movies, the kind with dames and detectives, the kind with revenge and lust, the kind with crime and plenty of punishment.

There’s a lot of appreciation for Film Noir lately in comics and other books, so it’s not a surprise that there’s so much readily available for us all to enjoy. Here’s a few recent good ones that you don’t want to miss:

CRIMES OF PASSION “More Than Maybe”
by Steve Orlando and Greg Smallwood
DC Comics

I wanted to snag a copy DC’s Crimes of Passion #1 because I had read that one of the stories in it was a Wildcat adventure written by Stephanie Phillips. She’s a hot new writer, kicking it into high gear with comics like Aftershock Comics’ The Descendent, the upcoming Artemis and the Assassin and Dark Horse’s Butcher of Paris. She’s going to be a guest at ITHACON 45 (it’s on March 21 & 22nd and tickets are available here), and I’m excited to meet her.  Her Wildcat story, “Pulling Punches”, is great fun. Continue reading “With Further Ado #84: It’s a Noir World … or … I See Red Door and I Want to Paint It Noir”