Comics News Unlimited

Harvey ResultsThe big winners at this year’s Harvey Awards were Drawn & Quarterly, Fantagraphics, DC, and Craig Thompson. D&Q won five Harveys including Best Writer (Chester Brown) and Best Colorist (Chris Ware). Fantagraphics brought home four Harveys including Best Single Issue (Love and Rockets #9) and Best Inker (Charles Burns). DC won for Best New Series (Plastic Man), Best Continuing Series (League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume 2), and Best Single Story (Gotham Central #6-10). The big individual winner of the ceremony was Craig Thompson. He won for Best Artist, Best Cartoonist, and Best Graphic Album of Original Work. Judging by all of the exclusive contracts the Big Two are churning out these days, Thompson seems like a prime candidate for a bidding war.

Attn: Liefeld haters, Kirkman lovers

This should be interesting. Take an artist / writer who used to work for Image and has been taking hits from the comic community for years about how he missed many, many deadlines and ‘watered down’ the genre by hiring artists who draw like him. (I’ve always wondered, though, how bad could he have been if he sold so many copies? — but, whatever.) Put him together with another writer who works for Image now and seems to do no wrong in the industry. By the end of the year, you can expect to see just that as Rob Liefeld will co-plot and Robert Kirkman will co-plot and script (Marat Michaels will be penciling) Youngblood: Imperial. Imperial will be a monthly (I know, I know) title that happens chronologically before Youngblood: Bloodsport. The story takes place in a future where the United States has grown and absorbed 15 countries into its union. It’s Youngblood’s job to keep global peace between the U.S. and the foreign countries that are becoming more and more displeased with America’s growth.

“What can possibly come of a team-up between an industry flunky and an industry darling?” Well, the obvious answer is that Liefeld’s credibility will go up or Kirkman’s will go down depending on how the material does in the market. Either way it will be fun to watch.

Earth’s Mightiest Heroes Finally Get Some Attention

Joe Quesada confesses to overlooking this corner of the Marvel Universe for quite some time. All of that is about to change. I got a look at the first twenty or so pages of Avengers #500 (posted over at Newsarama) and all I can say is that no character seems to be safe from Death’s clutches. Writer Brian Michael Bendis admits asking for a list of which characters he could kill and he said he was shocked at some of the names that the Marvel Big Wigs were allowing to be rubbed out. This summer just got a bit more interesting.

Also, I just learned that Avengers alum George Perez has signed on to pencil an issue of a storyline called “Avengers Finale.” Finale takes chronologically between Disassemble and the Avengers’ new direction.

The Vigilant Complainers Win

His city was destroyed, he went nuts, he tried to rebuild his city with his ring (something you’re not supposed to do; you can’t use the ring for personal gain of such magnitude), he needed more power so he killed a bunch of his allies to get their rings, turned into Parallax (whatever that means), died in disgrace, and turned into the new Spectre — whew! Some of it was good, some of it was bad, but none of that matters now because he’s back!

That’s right, the hardcore fans have been screeching for this ever since poor Kyle took over way back when Hal lost it. This October, the Green Lantern: Rebirth mini, drawn by Ethan Van Sciver and written by Geoff Johns, answers the questions about whether Hal will return to his former glory and if his Superfriends can forgive him. Hey fans (short for fanatics), it just goes to show that if you whine long enough, you may just break down the brass at DC and get your favorite character back. Never give up.

Familiar Faces, Exotic Locations

Last week I mentioned that there will be an entirely new Spider-Man created for the Indian market. Well, recently French company Semic has been making a name for itself in a similar fashion. Semic, which has already published Spawn: Simony and Witchblade: Blood Oath, will be putting out a new mini-series called Darkness: Theater of Darkness. Though these French versions of Spawn, Witchblade, and Darkness are not completely redesigned from scratch like Spider-Man India was, McFarlane and Silvestri are allowing these characters to be completely written and drawn by Semic’s staff, a big step toward expanding the popularity of American characters to foreign markets.

News Blips

  • Mark Texeira has a new creator-owned project due out in September called Pscythe. The name seems to be a horrible play on words but the art (if you’re a Texeira fan) looks great. The first arc will be just two issues but Texeira states that the title will be an ongoing series of mini-series.
  • Before there was CrossGen there have been, over the years, many other comic book company disasters. Chaos! Comics, former home to Evil Ernie and Lady Death, is in the final stages of its own bankruptcy that was declared in 2002. The company is finally close to forking over some of the money that it owes to various parties. An interesting side note is that Brian Pulido is / was associated with both companies. Hmmm.
  • Do yourself a favor and check out the Loki mini-series preview posted at Newsarama. The art, fully painted by Esad Ribic, looks amazing. He has apparently been working on these four issues for almost two years!
  • 2003′s Diamond Publisher of the Year, IDW Publishing, has announced that Jeff Mariotte, the current Editor-in-Chief, is leaving and will be replaced by’s (I really just wanted to type that) EIC, Chris Ryall.
  • I saw a list of definite and possible cancellations from Marvel and thought I would pass it along. Some of these have been known for a while, some are new.
    • Possibly Axed: Venom, Iron Fist.
    • Definitely Axed: Thanos, Captain Marvel, Hawkeye.
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Mike produces books and documentaries about comics. He's now trying to write his own comics. He tells everyone else at Sequart what to do. Do they listen? Eh.

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Also by Mike Phillips:


executive producer


executive producer

a short documentary on Chris Claremont's historic run and its influence

executive producer

a feature-length documentary film on celebrated comics writer Warren Ellis

executive producer

a documentary on the life and work of celebrated comics writer Grant Morrison

executive producer

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