This is our roundup of news and press releases from the comics industry for this past week. There are some interesting comic projects coming in the near future, and you can find out about them here.
Z2 COMICS AND HIP HOP LEGEND THE RZA ANNOUNCE BOBBY DIGITAL: IN THE PIT OF SNAKE ORIGINAL GRAPHIC NOVEL
The comic publisher continues to build its catalogue of graphic novels inspired by and created by music superstars. This latest addition by hip-hop artist RZA will be released in June 2022, and can be pre-ordered on Z2’s website Now
From the Press Release:
NEW YORK, NY—Z2 Comics proudly announces the larger-than-life rapper, actor, and filmmaker is the latest artist to bring his storytelling skills to the comic book medium with the announcement of Bobby Digital and the Pit of Snakes, an original graphic novel to be released in 2022.
The founding member of the multimedia supergroup The Wu-Tang Clan first introduced the world to his alter-ego with the 1998 album Bobby Digital in Stereo, with lush digital orchestral sounds and inventive beats, putting the rapper’s love of comic books on full display through its concept and execution. Now, exactly 23 years since its original release, RZA announces a partnership with Z2 Comics to give the character a story in the medium which inspired his creation!
RZA says “Out of all my creative personas and alter egos Bobby Digital is probably the best fit, for comics and graphic novels. It’s a pleasure for me to collaborate with Z2 Comics and bring this lush world of creativity into the comic space. The readers are going to be hit with something they never seen coming. Bong-Bong.”
Who are you, what is real? This is the question Bobby Digital is seeking to answer. Embracing his id, ego and superego he embarks on a quest to figure out the nature of his reality and himself. He will be ambushed by enemies unknown, he will be tried in ways most men can’t endure. Will he be victorious? Most of all, will he survive the Pit of Snakes?! From the mind of the legendary RZA, Bobby Digital and The Pit of Snakes will coincide with the relaunch of the iconic character and be synced to music that will melt your mind.
Oni Press announces the debut of LatinX series exploring heritage, culture, and magic in 2022
Family Magic and Cultural Lore Take Center Stage in this Action-packed Creator-owned Series from Oni Press
Season of the Bruja will be released as five issue series starting in March 2022. It is written by Aaron Durán with art and colors by Sara Soler and letters by Jamie Martinez. The concepts and preview cover art that we have seen make this a book to keep an eye out for. The press release is below:
PORTLAND, OR: Oni Press is pleased to announce the forthcoming Latinx single-issue series, Season of the Bruja, written by Aaron Durán, illustrated and colored by up-and-coming artist Sara Soler (Us), and with lettering by AndWorld Design’s Jaime Martinez, coming Spring 2022.
“Season of the Bruja is an exploration of forgotten culture and heritage I’ve been trying to tell for years,” said Aaron Durán. “Working with Sara has been a dream; her art and energy elevated our comic to levels I would never have imagined, and Shawna [Gore, Oni Press senior editor] does what all great editors do: she found the strongest story within the pages and helped Sara and I bring it to life.” Season of the Bruja is Durán’s debut project in which he adapted much of the lore for the series from his own family’s traditions.
Althalia Cabrera might seem like any other witchy Portland hipster whiling away her days behind the counter of a freaky occult museum, but there’s more to her whole deal than a trendy pursuit of the craft. Althalia is a bruja by blood—the youngest in a long line of powerful magic users from a long-ago culture indigenous to Mexico. In her twenty years, Althalia has studied with her loving abuela by her side, supporting and mentoring her use of the family magic, and protecting her from the darkest parts of their practice’s history. But just as Althalia’s inner light and power begin to shine, the darkness of the past finds its way into her world and strikes a tragic blow, testing Althalia in ways she might not be prepared to survive.
Sara Soler said, “Season of the Bruja is a story that vindicates culture and diversity, the fighting for one’s own rights and also of learning, forgiveness, and the love that you can find in the family, whether of blood or not. Aaron is an exceptional storyteller, not only because of how he tells the story, but because of the values with which the script has been infused. And […] I couldn’t have asked for a better editor! [Shawna] has fought tooth and nail to carry out this project throughout some of the most difficult years I can remember (Hi there, 2020!) […]. Aaron and Shawna have made Season of the Bruja the kind of project I’ve always wanted to be involved in!”
According to Durán, “Season of the Bruja is an ongoing journey of discovering our roots, and I think everyone will see a bit of themselves in the series.”
Inspired by Aaron Durán’s lifelong love for his Mexican family’s cultural traditions and his devoted fandom of horror stories, comics, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Season of the Bruja is a five-part series and will be available where comics are sold March 16, 2022.
NEW REGENCY SIGNS EXCLUSIVE DEAL WITH GROUNDBREAKING COMICS PUBLISHER TKO STUDIOS TO ADAPT GRAPHIC NOVELS INTO TELEVISION SERIES
TKO Studios has been working with some extremely talented creative comic professionals in its short history and produced some great storytelling. Working with a studio like New Regency is an encouraging sign that if their stories are translate to a cinematic medium that they will be treated well. This is exciting news for TKO, their creators, and their fans.
From the Press Release:
Los Angeles – New Regency announced that it has entered into a development and production partnership with ground-breaking publisher, TKO Studios. Under the terms of the deal, New Regency will have the right to exclusively develop television projects from TKO Studios’ expansive library of IP. TKO’s Salvatore Simeone and Tze Chun will develop, produce, and package all shows with New Regency.
Yariv Milchan, New Regency’s Chairman and CEO, stated, “Since the company’s inception, the team at TKO Studios have been innovators and leaders in their field and we have been longtime fans of their exceptional material. We are delighted to be partnering with Salvatore, Tze, and the rest of the team and look forward bringing their impressive collection of IP to television audiences all around the world.”
TKO Studios CEO Salvatore Simeone and President Tze Chun stated, “TKO is proud to partner with New Regency. Their track record creating groundbreaking film and television aligns with our history of publishing critically acclaimed thought-provoking genre stories. We feel our companies’ combined strengths make an ideal partnership and forges a new model for TV adaptation that will benefit all parties, including our incredible creators.”
Free Comic Book Day 2022 to Return to First Saturday in May
With the past two years of Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) being collateral damage to a worldwide public health crisis, Diamond Comic Distributors is bringing the fan favorite event back to its expected date on the calendar for 2022. This is traditionally one of the most important days for comic retailers across the country. The comic distribution process has changed drastically since the last May FCBD in 2019. Diamond is not the only distributer in the game, and we will have to see how the event shakes out with some publishers no longer using Diamond for their distribution. Despite that we are excited to see this event back in its scheduled time. It is another sign of recovery and a return to a semblance of normalcy.
(Hunt Valley, MD) — (November 18, 2021)– Diamond Comic Distributors is pleased to announce that Free Comic Book Day (FCBD), one of the comic book industry’s most beloved and anticipated celebrations, will return to its traditional “First Saturday in May” date in 2022. The celebration is set to take place at local comic shops across the U.S. on Saturday, May 7, 2022.
“We are so excited for Free Comic Book Day to make its return to the first Saturday in May. We know it’s an event fans look forward to each spring, and we’re working with our retailer and vendor partners to make this year’s event one of the best yet!” said Free Comic Book Day spokesperson, Ashton Greenwood. “Free Comic Book Day is a great opportunity for newcomers to dive into the world of comics and for longtime readers to try a new title they may not have picked up otherwise. We encourage fans everywhere to visit their local comic shops on Saturday, May 7 to celebrate!”
Free Comic Book Day 2022 will feature forty-five free titles available at participating local comic shops. The titles will be comprised of eleven gold and thirty-four silver sponsor titles. Titles will be announced to the public in December and will appear in the January 2022 edition of the PREVIEWS catalog.
TOP COW COLLECTS THE ORIGINAL CYBERFORCE INTO A LIMITED EDITION 30TH ANNIVERSARY HARDCOVER EDITION VIA KICKSTARTER
In a sign that I am getting old. There is a 30th Anniversary Edition for an Image Comics book. Unsurprisingly this book is already funded with 30 days to go. That means that there is no risk to backing this project if you are interested in getting your hands on this special edition.
From the Press Release:
November 18th, 2021 — Los Angeles, California — In celebration of Top Cow Productions/Image Comics’ 30thanniversary, CYBERFORCE is being collected in a special action-packed 664-page hardcover collection of the original stories that launched the Top Cow Universe. The original CYBERFORCE run features the work of legendary creators Marc Silvestri, Jim Lee, Todd McFarlane, Walter Simonson, David Finch, Joe Chiodo, Scott Williams, Brian Haberlin, Joe Benitez and Michael Turner which has not been reprinted in any format since 1994. Top Cow is inviting fans to take part in the excitement and push how far the campaign’s exclusives can go via Kickstarter stretch goals.
This exclusive CYBERFORCE COMPLETE COLLECTION VOL 1 Hardcover Kickstarter collection will feature the cover art by the original series creator and founder of Top Cow and Image Comics, Marc Silvestri with fan favorite colorist Bryan Valenza. In addition, every physical backer will receive a special edition bookplate signed by Marc Silvestri and Kickstarter exclusive dust-jacket!
Zoop campaign for John Paul Leon’s ‘THE WINTER MEN Artist’s Edition’ raises over $190,000 for late artist’s family
The loss of artist John Paul Leon this year to cancer has been a devastating hit on the comics industry and also to his family. Many of his friends and admirers contributed to a campaign on Zoop to create a special collected edition of John Paul’s only creator-owned work “The Winter Men”. This type of creators supporting creators is an important aspect of the comic industry and unfortunately extremely necessary. We lend our full throated support to this news and any other projects like it.
Original Press Release:
Los Angeles, CA – Zoop is thrilled to announce that the fundraising campaign for John Paul Leon’s THE WINTER MEN Artist’s Edition has successfully been fully funded, with an astonishing 992 individuals pledging over $190,000 and claiming over 1,000 copies of the book, with all proceeds going to the late artist’s family. THE WINTER MEN Artist’s Edition is the most successful fundraiser to date on the Zoop platform.
Contributors included some of the renowned artist’s closest friends, including Tommy Lee Edwards, Bernard Chang, Bill Sienkiewicz, Lee Weeks, Duncan Fegredo, Sean Phillips, Walter Simonson, Kim Jung Gi and Peach Momoko, who created brand-new signed and numbered art prints for the campaign, which will also be featured in the edition. In celebration of the astonishing and inspiring body of work by John Paul Leon, THE WINTER MEN Artist’s Edition features 200 pages of full-size 12 x 17 scans of all of the original comic art pages, along with never-before-seen concepts, sketches, and unused art.
“On behalf of the Leon family, we want to express our heartfelt gratitude for all the love and support each and every one of you have shown in helping JPs dream come true. His legacy will continue to grow strong with the Artist’s Edition release
which commemorates one of his most celebrated accomplishments. We will never forget the amount of love and passion JP had in his work. We would also like to give a special thanks to all the personnel working with this project, who organized and dedicated their time and support in making it happen. Thank you, Bernard, Tommy, Scott, all the artists that have contributed, and last but not least Zoop,” said John Paul Leon’s wife Christina.
“JP gave all of us 30 years of his heart, soul, and talent. It’s so wonderful to see so many of you all giving some back,” said artist and contributor Tommy Lee Edwards, who was close friends of John Paul Leon.
Marvel-DC veteran Bobbie Chase will be leading Webtoon’s transition to print comics
Newsarama release the news that Webtoon Unscrolled will be led by veteran comic editor Bobbie Chase.
Webtoon Unscrolled is the print graphic novel imprint of the webcomic publisher webtoon.com and it will begin its twelve graphic novel per year release schedule in 2022. The genres will cover both adult and children’s books.
We are excited to see Chase in this role. Her expertise and reputation in the comic industry are unquestioned and while the webtoon platform has countless readers, being able to have a physical copy of the stories is definitely something that the fanbase is interested in. There are also plenty of comic readers who prefer hardcopies of their comics and this is a chance to reach those readers. We have no doubt that Chase will excell in this position.
According to the article some of the initial release will include:
- Tower of God by SIU
- True Beauty by Yaongyi
- Doom Breaker by Blue-Deep
- Boyfriends by Refrainbow
- Cursed Princess Club by LambCat
- Everything is Fine by Mike Birchall
New Archie Comics Anthology Delivers Heartwarming Rom-Com This February
Archie Comics announced a Valentine’s Day special this week. Releasing on February 9, 2022 is Archie: Love and Heartbreak Special #1. The one-shot comic will include the talents of Thomas Pitili, Stephanie Cooke, Sina Grace, Lisa Sterle, Iolanda Zanfardino, with colors by Matt Herms and letters by Jack Morelli. As the weather finally turns colder, this is heartwarming news and something that we look forward to:
Ride down the tunnel of love with the Riverdale gang in ARCHIE: LOVE AND HEARTBREAK SPECIAL #1, arriving February 9, 2022 from Archie Comics. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the special one-shot follows Archie and his friends during a romantic night out at the Riverdale carnival as romances burn bright, while others fizzle out and some are just getting started.
Cupid has his eye on Riverdale as Archie and his friends find themselves embroiled in the uncertainty of young love. As Archie and Veronica hit a speed bump in their relationship, Jughead explains his unique philosophy on love to Betty, while Kevin finds himself in too deep on a date of his own! As new bonds begin to form, our key characters find themselves relishing in the high-highs and low-lows associated with young love in this rom-com one-shot spearheaded by Archie’s Senior Director of Editorial Jamie L. Rotante.
The modern-style anthology features a welcomed mix of beloved and unexpected pairings: Veronica and Dilton, Kevin and Devon, and Betty and Jughead. The special one-shot also builds upon the recent KEVIN KELLER CELEBRATION Kickstarter by placing Kevin right in the midst of his own romantic debacle alongside Devon, his boyfriend from the classic Archie comic series. Brought to life by writer/artist Thomas Pitilli, writers Stephanie Cooke and Sina Grace, and artists Lisa Sterle and Iolanda Zanfardino, the all-new romantic one shot is perfect for fans of the modern Archie Comics series.
“Coming off the heels of our 80th anniversary, we wanted to welcome fans of the modern comics back to the romantic core of Riverdale with this special one-shot,” explains Senior Director of Editorial Jamie L. Rotante. “Capturing the ideals of young love, readers get to experience firsthand the ups-and-downs of new relationships and what it means to discover yourself in a way we haven’t seen before in Archie comics. We hope readers see a little bit of themselves in each of these stories.”
Spider-Man: No Way Home Trailer Finally Arrives
The eagerly anticipated trailer for Spider-Man: No Way Home dropped this week, and it sent fans into a tizzy of speculation. The movie releases in theaters only on December 17, 2021, and while we know for certain that Tom Holland will be appearing as Spider-Man, the trailer gave theorists more ammunition for the idea that Toby Maguire and/or Andrew Garfield will also appear based on both what is in and what isn’t in the clip. Check it out for yourself and tell us what you think.
Cowboy Bebop is released on Netflix
The live action reboot of the fan-favorite classic anime Cowboy Bebop was released on Netflix this week and the reception has been mixed. Some fans are clearly not happy but what do you think of this series?
Here is an example of a thoughtful take on the show.
I was looking forward to Cowboy Bebop live-action, but everything about it is weird. The writing is bad. The visuals are accurate, but the cinematography is strange. Most shots are either closeups, wide-angle lenses, or dutch angles. Feels dated. Cowboy Bebop should be timeless.
— Suzi Hunter (@TheSphereHunter) November 19, 2021
What Else Happened on PCS:
We had a review column of a bunch of good comics from last week.
Everything We Read for the Week of November 10, 2021
Ed Catto found a gem of advertising and comic history in a bargain bin at a show last weekend.
With Further Ado #171: Come Fly With Me
Mike Gold explored the DC Comics January catalog with a calculator and the numbers are batty in a dark and brooding way.
Brainiac On Banjo: How Many Batmans Does It Take To Screw Up A Catalog?