Read all about 13 Coins and view the sweet preview art!
Writers: Martin Brennan & Michael B. Jackson
Artist: Simon Bisley
Colors: Ryan Brown
Letters: David Withers
32pp | FC | $3.99 | On-sale November 5
ANGELS WITH BLOODY FACES
From Eisner Award-winning artist Simon Bisley – legendary artist of Batman/Judge Dredd: Judgement on Gotham and Lobo – comes a new series that finds Heaven and Hell at war in an angelic battle over the fate of Mankind.
Hidden amongst the heaving masses of humanity is John Pozner, the tormented ex-con who can end the fighting and whom both sides in the war seek. And, for John, what seemed just bad dreams of angelic death and slaughter are about to take on a horrific reality!
13 Coins #2 hits comic stores on November 5
Thoughts: being European and all, I’m really glad to see the influx of translations of comics that, shock horror, weren’t first written in English. There’s been a lot thanks to Titan Comics – Snowpiercer being a case in point – and it seems to be catching on to IDW now which is welcome news. Keep it coming, lads!
EuroComics, A New Imprint Edited by Dean Mullaney Will Release the Seminal Series in the Original Oversized Format with New Translations
Long before the term “graphic novel” entered the popular lexicon, the Italian cartoonist Hugo Pratt pioneered the long-form “drawn literature” story in 1967 when he introduced Corto Maltese in the epic adventure “The Ballad of the Salty Sea.”
Pratt set the standard for all adult adventure comics in Europe, and by the mid-1970s Corto was the continent’s most popular series and Pratt the world’s leading graphic novelist. “He is one of the true masters of comic art,” says Frank Miller.
Pratt’s books remain best sellers in Europe and are published in a dozen languages yet until now, Corto Maltese has been poorly represented in English.
“We intend to change all that,” says EuroComics editorDean Mullaney. “Pratt deserves a first-rate American edition and America deserves Corto Maltese. We’re proud to publish Hugo Pratt as the first graphic novelist in our EuroComics imprint; we’re similarly pleased to publish him alongside Milton Caniff and Alex Toth, two important artistic influences on Pratt, from our long-standing Library of American Comics line.”
The late Kim Thompson, best known as the Vice President and Co-Publisher of Fantagraphics Books, summed up the Pratt’s historical importance: “Corto Maltese was the first European strip to advance a mature, artistically serious sensibility within the traditional adventure format. The elliptical narrative of the stories, the pervasive sense of destiny and tragedy, the side trips into the worlds of dreams and magic—all capped off with the exotic, guarded nature of the hero—combined with Pratt’s hard-won craft, worldly experience, and scrupulous research to form a work of breathtaking scope and power.”
EuroComics is working closely with Patrizia Zanotti, Pratt’s long-time collaborator, to present the complete Corto Maltese in a series of twelve quality trade paperbacks in Pratt’s original oversized black and white format. They will also feature new translations from Pratt’s original Italian scripts by Simone Castaldi, Associate Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures at Hofstra (and author of Drawn and Dangerous: Italian Comics of the 1970s and 1980s), and Mullaney.
“At long last, Hugo Pratt’s masterpiece washes up on American shores the way it was intended to be seen and read, the way fans all over the world have known and loved it for decades,” said Eisner Award winner Matt Fraction. “I read my first Corto Maltese story when I was ten years old and, ever since,this was the version of Corto I’ve wanted on my shelves. ”
The first of the twelve volumes, Corto Maltese: Under the Sign of Capricorn, to be published December 2014, collects the first six inter-connected short stories Pratt created in France in the early 1970s: “The Secret of Tristan Bantam,” “Rendez-vous in Bahia,” “Sureshot Samba,” “The Brazilian Eagle,” “So Much for Gentlemen of Fortune,” and “The Seagull’s Fault.”
The second volume, collecting the subsequent five stories, and will be released Spring 2015.
The series will also be released in a matched set of six original art-sized limited edition hardcovers, each containing the equivalent of two of the trade paperbacks.
Dr. Will Brooker is a writer and academic, Professor of Film and Cultural Studies at Kingston University.
His publications in the comics arena include
- Batman Unmasked: Analyzing a Cultural Icon
- Using the Force: Creativity, Community and Star Wars Fan
- Hunting the Dark Knight: Twenty-First Century Batman
He is also the creator, with Suze Shore and Dr. Sarah Zaidan, of the critically acclaimed comic series My So-Called Secret Identity. As of the time of writing, a Kickstarter is running to finish the first volume of Cat’s adventures. We wrote about that over here.
He’s also a really damn nice guy and I was delighted to have the chance to interview him.
Sword Art Online: Fairy Dance Volume 1 – Reki Kawahara & Tsubasa Haduki
There is nothing I can say to recommend Reki Kawahara’s Sword Art Online to new readers. I hate it.
It is a tangled mess – an insular, boyish fantasy with little room for character development. Sure, it looks fancy. It’s stylish and full of the promise of adventure and (albeit slightly nauseating) heroic acts of chivalry. Sword Art Online is like a beautifully presented box of spiders. Plot issues are sometimes forgivable, but this story sets its leading lady up with a sword and high-level skill only to reduce her narrative purpose to powerless commodity and hero-motivator.
I haaate it.
Fairy Dance is the second arc of Sword Art Online. Previously, a virtual reality helmet trapped 10,000 gamers in an MMORPG world full of swords and melodrama called Aincrad. Death in the game meant death in real life, and the victims would only wake from their electronic-induced coma once all hundred levels of the castle were cleared.
Expert gamer Kirito whinged about various things, fell in love with Asuna/rare item with boobs and unnecessary kitchen prowess, cleared the game and woke up in hospital. This manga begins with Kirito readjusting to normal life after two years in Aincrad. Asuna, however, hasn’t returned. She remains unconscious and helpless while slimy Sugou, a slimy man in a slimy suit, pokes her face and tells Kirito that he is going to marry her. Even though she is asleep.
It gets worse, don’t worry.
Not put off by the tragedy of the initial game, a new virtual reality world has been created called Alfheim. A screenshot from inside the game reveals a really big tree with a really big birdcage containing someone who looks like Asuna/a rare item with boobs and big pointy ears because this is now a fairy-themed world or something. Kirito jumps right in and gets big pointy ears of his own! Hooray! Alongside an odd and slightly dodgy sub-plot, Kirito sets off to find The World Tree and therefore Asuna. Asuna, meanwhile, is held captive in the cage by none other than Sugou, who is the Slimy King of Fairies.
His harassment of Asuna, both physical and emotional, is quite frankly disgusting. I’ve seen a lot of boob-fondling in my manga travels, but it usually results in a big punch to the groper’s stupid face. I don’t like it, but it does establish some sort of balance.
Sword Art Online however presents a primitive owner/object dynamic; the dominant, all-powerful male and submissive, utterly helpless female. And anyone who says incarcerated Asuna is not intentionally sexualised for the benefit of the reader should remember the detailed figures immortalising the scene. You can put her on the dashboard of your spaceship as you are ejected from the planet.
Sword Art Online receives its fair share of hatred, but it also has a huge following of supporters. If, for whatever reason, you still intend to buy this manga, here are some more neutral comments.
- Tsubasa Haduki’s art is neat and resembles the style of the anime.
- It covers the plot more extensively than the single-volume Aincrad arc, so I imagine fans of SAO will appreciate a thorough coverage of this part of the story.
- The Yen Press release also includes a little ‘background guide’ at the start of each chapter which explains bits and pieces from Kawahara’s light novels that haven’t been included in the manga.
If you are a fan of Sword Art Online, you will probably appreciate this release of the second story arc. Everyone else, please do not touch it. Don’t even poke it with a stick. Spend your money on Another instead.
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic fast became the best-selling comic in IDW’s history and last year the title reached a monumental milestone of selling over one million copies at retail. To celebrate the occasion, IDW and Hasbro collaborated on a very special promotion. In an unprecedented move, an extremely rare variant cover by fan-favorite Sara Richard of issue #12 of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic was made, so rare it was limited to ONE copy total!
Written by newcomer Ollie Masters with art by illustrator Ming Doyle, THE KITCHEN follows a group of four mob wives who get a taste for crime when their husbands are jailed.
Set in New York City in the 1970′s, it sounds pretty cool but we better not count our chickens til we get our hands on it!
Check out DC All Access – Ep 218 – Suicide Squad’s New Mission + Arrow’s Stephen Amell & Cast for more chatter about the November release.
Many things have been said about Batman but that he’s emotionally stable isn’t one of them. For more on this, check out
- Is Batman a sociopath?
- ‘Arkham Knight’ makes Batman into even more of a sociopath
- The Hero Gotham Deserves: Is Batman Good for Gotham City?
- Bats In The Belfry: Batman as a Heroic Psychopath.
Appointment in Crime Alley is a memorable episode of Batman: The Animated Series.
If you haven’t seen it, it’s centered around the anniversary of Thomas and Martha Wayne’s murder before, and Bruce Wayne’s annual appointment to visit the site of their death.
So is Bruce’s yearly visit to his parents grave on the date of their murder a healthy way of dealing with their deaths?
I’m not a psychologist but it doesn’t sound like a really great idea to me.
Isn’t he just prolonging his grief?
No wonder he’s completely incapable of moving forward. In many ways, Bruce Wayne is still the terrified boy he was the night his parents were killed.
Check out Coping With Trauma In ‘Batman: Appointment In Crime Alley’ and let us know what you think about Batman and trauma in the comments.
More episodes of The Arkham Sessions can be found on iTunes as well as on Under The Mask. Dr. Drea can be found Twitter at @ArkhamAsylumDoc. Brian can be found at @Bward028. The Arkham Sessions’ official Twitter feed is @ArkhamSessions.
The internet abounds with praise of My So-Called Secret Identity -
‘My So-Called Secret Identity will change your view on women in comics’ – The Daily Dot
“Cat’s a great heroine – she doesn’t run around in high heels and latex, and she despises superheroes. Marshal Law would approve of her!” - Pat Mills, creator of 2000AD
“Catherine’s one of the most relatable characters I’ve ever read. This comic has the potential to be hugely popular… the next Girl Genius.” – Kyrax2, “The San Diego Batgirl”, Comics Bulletin
She is very relatable. She’s normal without being dowdy or dull – the sad fate of too many female comicbook characters written by people who think that normal women are uninteresting.
It’s so good that I wanna hug it.
So, go forth, pledge. There’s 6 days left and they’re super close to their goal.
I thought I’d update y’all on how we’re doing with this thing. We’re doing great and had donations from
- Nicole McCurry of the fantasy webcomic The Ecadian Chronicles
- Alison Wells, Irish writer & author of Housewife with a Halflife
- Kate Ashwin of the webcomic Widdershins
- Will Brooker, creator of My So-Called Secret Identity
- Ethan Kocak of Black Mudpuppy
- Lynn Andrews, reviewer here with us and creator of 6 Color Stories
- The kind folks at Tokyo Demons, an online serial at Sparkler Monthly
- Mark Glavin of übertool webcomic
- Angela Gasparetti, designer and illustrator – check out her rad tumblr
- Big Bang Comics, Dundrum, Dublin – Facebook (new website coming soon)
- João Valagão of Cereals for Lunch (reviewed here by us)
- Jennifer Stein and Ryan Williams of the comic Star Shanty
We’re now short of just €66.63 of our costs but there’s still 8 days! Thanks so much to everyone above. Superstars, I tell you. Superstars.