Friday, July 15, 2005

DC Direct, JLU action figure sneak peeks

Superhero Times is snappin' pics in San Diego. Check out their gallery of upcoming DC Direct and Mattel figures here.

Another shot

More from Newsarama.

Darwyn Cooke to do ongoing Spirit series

Well, I'm not sure how I feel about someone other than Will Eisner doing the Spirit, but Cooke is probably the best guy around to do it.

According to a Newsarama report from the International Comicon in San Diego, the new series will debut in 2006, following up a Spirit meet Batman oneshot written by Jeph Loeb and drawn by Cooke.

Cooke will write the ongoing title himself. It'll be set in a the modern age, not Eisner's 1930s/40s milieu but, aside from that, he's shooting to stay as loyal as possible to the original, citing these two goals for himself:

”One - preserve and if humanly possible, enrich the core essence of the Spirit. Give long-time readers a contemporary look at the magic that has held them for decades, and introduce a new generation to the irresistible pull of this rich human drama. Action, crime, romance, humor and pathos will all be generously employed in the ‘spirit’ of the original strip. There'll be no deconstruction and every issue will be a story unto itself, making every issue an ideal jumping on point. Every story will try to add and hopefully strengthen the essence of Eisner’s characters and vision.

”The second goal is to produce a work that reaffirms the Spirit as the strip for graphic innovation that enhances storytelling. This second mandate is, I believe, the one to be artistically important. While we cleave to Eisner’s vision and world-view for Central City, we should be equally mindful of his vision that contemporary storytelling techniques be continually introduced to engage the reader in fresh and appropriate ways. I believe that this would have been very important to Will, and I feel it is the key to avoiding a simple homage.”

Eisner's longtime associate Denis Kitchen helped bring the project to fruition.

Also in the works, a series of "Best of the Spirit" paperbacks featuring some of Eisner's top work on the strip.

Pop Artifact! Superman roller skates

More Superman.

Quick hits

Coming Soon has an update on plans for a live-action film featuring Will Eisner's Spirit.

The official site for Underworld: Evolution is up.

Via BoingBoing: Back in 1982, original "Bullwinkle and Rocky" voice actors performed a live script reading from one of the toons scripts. Check out the performance here.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Pop Artifacts! Batman and Robin squeeze toys

PBS to air Python specials

"Monty Python's Personal Best" devotes one episode each to the troupe's six members: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin and Terry Jones.

The episodes will mix interview footage and clips from Python films and TV programs.

It'll air sometime next spring, UPI reports.

"Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" review roundup

Newsday: This is Burton in the winking mode and full-tilt visual extravagance of his three best movies: "Pee-Wee's Big Adventure," "Edward Scissorhands" and "Ed Wood." The youngest audience members will miss the layering of pop culture references upon which Willy has built his madhouse (as if time had stood still the moment he shut the gate on the outside world): Sgt. Pepper, the Bee Gees, "Ben-Hur," "THX 1138," "2001: A Space Odyssey" and Busby Berkeley-style production numbers for the Oompa-Loompas (written by Burton die-hard Danny Elfman) that remind us how fascistic those synchronized routines could be.

Depp, who is to Tim Burton what James Stewart was to Alfred Hitchcock, misses the mark when the script requires him to shtick it up a la Jerry Lewis. But he puts his head on the block in ways most of his contemporaries wouldn't dare, and ultimately overrides the camp posturings of the flashback sequences (Joan Crawford, anyone?) to make us feel something for Willy's inner child.

Rolling Stone: The Michael Jackson pallor. The unnaturally white teeth. The smile stretched with insincerity. Johnny Depp's deliciously demented take on Willy Wonka, the candy man of Roald Dahl's book, demands to be seen. Director Tim Burton surrounds Depp with miraculous visuals of spun sugar and creeping menace. Their missionary lunacy is a treat for twisted children of all ages.

MSNBC: The new movie often feels less like a remake than a trip through Burtonland, where weird landscapes, Danny Elfman’s spry music and Johnny Depp’s whims threaten to turn the movie into a series of improvisations. Fortunately, there’s more of the classic Burton (“Beetlejuice,” “Ed Wood”) than the problematic Burton (“Big Fish,” “Planet of the Apes”) of recent years.

And the casting couldn’t be much better. Highmore, who was Peter Pan to Depp’s J.M. Barrie in “Finding Neverland,” has the requisite soul and spirit to play Charlie. Also making solid contributions are David Kelly as Charlie’s young-at-heart grandfather and James Fox as perhaps the most indulgent parent on the planet. Depp’s dark take on Wonka may not become as beloved as Wilder’s version, but his performance is the film’s chief source of welcome surprises.

Chicago Tribune: Tim Burton's scrumptious version of writer Roald Dahl's 1964 children's classic is almost everything you'd want it to be: a peach of a story delightfully imagined by Dahl and lushly realized by Burton. It's full of witty or awesome scenes, flights of fancy and characters either totally, lovably sweet or outrageously, humorously rotten.

Marvel's next big movie

"The Watcher"!

Mike Sterling has the scoop!

"Looney Tunes Golden Collection Vol. 3" contents revealed

Out Oct. 25, the four-disk set will include:

Disc 1 - BUGS BUNNY CLASSICS (149 mins)
Hare Force
Hare Remover
Hare Tonic
A Hare Grows in Manhattan
Easter Yeggs
The Wabbit Who Came to Supper (commentary)
Bowery Bugs (commentary)
Homeless Hare
The Case of the Missing Hare (commentary)
Acrobatty Bunny
Wackiki Wabbit (commentary)
Hare Do
Rebel Rabbit
Hillbilly Hare (commentary)
Duck! Rabbit! Duck! (commentary)

Disc 2 - Hollywood Caricatures and Parodies (141 mins)
Daffy Duck in Hollywood
Hollywood Capers (commentary)
The Coo-Coo Nut Grove (commentary)
Porky's Road Race
The Woods Are Full of Cuckoos
She Was an Acrobat's Daughter (commentary)
The Film Fan
Speakin' of the Weather
Thugs with Dirty Mugs (commentary)
Goofy Groceries
Swooner Crooner (commentary)*
Wideo Wabbit
The Honey-Mousers (commentary)
The Last Hungry Cat
The Mouse That Jack Built (commentary)

Disc 3 - Porky and the Pigs (143 mins)
I Haven't Got a Hat (commentary)
Porky's Romance (commentary)
Porky's Party (commentary)
Porky in Egypt
Porky and Teabiscuit
Pigs Is Pigs
Pigs in a Polka (commentary)*
Porky Pig's Feat (commentary)
Daffy Duck Slept Here
Bye, Bye Bluebeard
An Egg Scramble
Robin Hood Daffy (commentary)
The Windblown Hare
Claws for Alarm (commentary)
Rocket Squad (commentary)

Disc 4 - All Stars Cartoon Party (146 mins)
Daffy Duck and the Dinosaur
Super Rabbit (commentary)
Daffy Duck and Egghead
A Gruesome Twosome (commentary)
Draftee Daffy (commentary)
Falling Hare (commentary)
Steel Wool
Birds Anonymous (commentary)*
No Barking (commentary)
Rabbit Punch
An Itch in Time (commentary)
Odor-able Kitty (commentary)
Walky Talky Hawky (commentary)*
Gonzales Tamales (commentary)
To Beep or Not to Beep (commentary)

Quick hits

Marvel and Microsoft are teaming up for a series of videogames, say news reports.

DC Direct is coming out with a series of Looney Tunes figures, the Comic Book Bin reports. Newsarama has pics.

Cameron Diaz turned down the chance to play Wonder Woman, says here.

A remake of "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" starring Owen Wilson puts a new spin on the James Thurber tale: The movie Mitty is a comic book writer, according to reports.

The Detroit Free Press profiles Jim Ottaviani, who writes highly entertaining non-fictional graphic novels about science and dinosaurs and stuff.

Stan Lee's Pow! Entertainment is launching a toy line, reports ICv2.

Dan Slott, Marvel's last best hope for making its comics fun again, talks to Newsarama about his upcoming Thing series. One I'll surely be checking out, given Slott's recent Spider-Man/Human Torch mini-series, which was a blast.

Image Comics' Girls isn't worth reading, says Joanna.

Dial B for Blog posts unpublished Fantastic Four covers.

Drawn sings the righteous praises of master designer Saul Bass.

Unveiled: Slip case art for "Harry Potter and Half-Blood Prince"

The book is due out July 16 and available via Amazon.

Click for a full-size view.

Another batch of Bob boots

Coming from Columbia Records Aug. 30:

Bob Dylan's "No Direction Home: The Soundtrack - The Bootleg Series Vol. 7" is the latest edition in the critically acclaimed "Bootleg Series," as well as the companion soundtrack to the two-part feature-length film, "No Direction Home: Bob Dylan," a Martin Scorsese picture.

The film will make its U.S. premiere on the Public Broadcasting System's "American Masters Series" over the course of Monday and Tuesday nights, September 26-27th, respectively.

The two-CD chronologically sequenced package contains 28 Bob Dylan tracks -- 26 of them previously unreleased -- comprised of rare private recordings, live concert, television and festival recordings, and 12 alternate takes of songs from his Columbia LP recording sessions in New York and Nashville during this period. The songs range in time from 1959 (a high school recording of "When I Got Troubles," most likely the first original song he ever recorded), to 1966 (alternate takes of "Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat" and "Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again" from the "Blonde on Blonde" album recording sessions, as well as "Ballad of a Thin Man" and "Like A Rolling Stone" from the legendary 1966 UK tour).

Many of the songs or tracks are introduced in the film for the first time in history, or are representative of times and places covered in the film, while others are alternate takes of classic tracks that were unearthed during the making of the film. For example, the version of Woody Guthrie's "This Land is Your Land" performed in 1961, at the intimate Carnegie Chapter Hall in New York City, was never known to have existed on any tape until now.

On the other hand, the "No Direction Home" film version of "Mr. Tambourine Man" is taken from the Newport Folk Festival, July 1964; while the CD version presents -- for the first time -- the first complete take of the song with Ramblin' Jack Elliott, recorded at Columbia Studios the month before. The track is then followed on the CD by "Chimes of Freedom" from Newport '64.

Archivists and researchers reviewed more than 400 hours of recordings by Bob Dylan in the preparation of "No Direction Home." The two CDs will be packaged with a 60-page color book housed in a slipcase. The book will include separate liner notes written by Andrew Loog Oldham, and Al Kooper who sheds light on the "Highway 61 Revisited" and "Blonde on Blonde" recording sessions in New York and Nashville (for which he played organ and served as musical director). An authoritative track-by-track delineation is also included.

The first feature-length film biography ever produced on the artist, "No Direction Home" is narrated in its entirety by Dylan. In addition to hours of black-and-white and color archival footage and photography, it features exclusive interviews with Joan Baez, photographer John Cohen of the New Lost City Ramblers, Allen Ginsberg, Tony Glover, Al Kooper, Bruce Langhorne, Paul Nelson, Suze Rotolo, Pete Seeger, Dave Van Ronk, Izzy Young of the Folklore Center, and many others.

You can pre-order the set now from Amazon. A DVD of the "No Direction Home" film also is available for pre-order, and is due out Sept. 20.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Pop Artifact! Obelix figure

The Fantastic Four Jack'n'Joe Gallery

Jack Kirby's pencils on the Fantastic Four never looked batter than when Joe Sinnott started inking them. It was surely a match made in comic book heaven.

Now you can see a gallery of Jack'n'Joe art at Sinnott's official site, including covers and a few rare black-and-white pieces.

New JLU figures coming up

Set to debut at the International Comicon this week in San Diego, new figures depicting the animated versions of Black Canary, Orion and Bizarro, Action Figure Insider reports. No pics yet.

New CD releases of note

July 12

Marian McPartland and Elvis Costello Piano Jazz
Willie Nelson Countryman
Son Volt Okemah and the Melody of Riot
Richard Brautigan Listening to
Duke Ellington The Piano Player
The Everly Brothers A Date with, Both Sides of an Evening, Instant Party!, It's Everly Time and Sing Great Country Hits
Soft Machine & Heavy Friends BBC in Concert 1971
Joe Strummer Walker

July 19

Art Blakey The Big Beat
Donald Byrd Fuego
Don Cherry Symphony for Improvisors
Sammy Davis, Jr. & Carmen McRae Boy Meets Girl: The Complete on Decca
Herbie Hancock Inventions and Dimensions
OST The Dukes of Hazzard

Quick hits

Salma Hayek may be up for a part in Sin City 2, says JoBlo.

Uma Thurman is set to star in a superhero-themed movie, reports Dark Horizons.

The impressively produced Comic Art magazine is set to return after a break in publishing, according to the Comics Reporter.

Drawn! discovers the lovely art of Eyvind Earle, background artist for Disney's "Sleeping Beauty."

Fred Hembeck sees "The Fantastic Four." I spose I should see it too eventually.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Quick hits

Bubblegumfink finds some groovy cover art from the 1970s Marvel Comics Planet of the Apes mag.

Bedazzled checks out the Library of Congress' online "Wizard of Oz" exhibit.

Drawn finds some nice fireworks label art.

The Planet of Sardines stumbles upon lots and lots of paperback cover art scans.

Rato Records offers up Bert Kaempfert's "Swingin' Safari" LP.

Record Brother has two new vinyl sharity offerings.

Comic Book Heaven has a personal Jack Kirby remembrance.

Mike Sterling sees "The Fantastic Four."

Superfrankenstein checks into this whole crazy Batman-is-a-libertarian phenomenon. My take: Batman, a guy who dresses up in a big batsuit and fights criminals whilst unarmed, isn't nutty enough to be a libertarian. He's more like a Truman Democrat.

Pop Artifact! Count Chocula figure toy

New Gervais series takes to air soon

Ricky Gervais, star and co-creator of The Office (funniest show ever), has a new series starting on the BBC July 21.

Extras focuses on people working as, um, extras on movies. HBO is set to air it in the U.S., but there's not a date yet.

See Gervais' site for clips and more info.

DVD new releases for July 12

July 12

Million Dollar Baby

Cry Baby

Flux photos

JoBlo has a buncha pics from the upcoming Aeon Flux flick starring Cherlize Theron.

Boxing up The Band

Upcoming Sept. 27 from Capitol/EMI:

Executive produced by Robbie Robertson, The Band's new career-spanning box set, "A Musical History," is the most comprehensive collection ever created for the group. Packaged within a 108-page hardcover book brimming with previously unseen photos and memorabilia are five CDs and one DVD documenting The Band's entire recording career from 1963 to 1976. Among the set's 111 audio and video tracks are 37 previously unreleased recordings and filmed clips captured live and in-studio. To be released on September 27 by Capitol/EMI Music Catalog Marketing, this definitive collection features a cover painting of The Band by world-renowned artist Ed Ruscha and extensive biographical liner notes by the Grammy-winning writer Rob Bowman. In-demand producer partners Cheryl Pawelski and Andrew Sandoval, who also teamed for the in-depth restoration of The Band's original Capitol albums in 2000 and 2001, joined Robertson on the project.

"This is by far the most comprehensive, in-depth, and beautifully put together collection of The Band's musical journey," says The Band's Robbie Robertson.

Among "A Musical History's" previously unreleased audio tracks are live and studio recordings The Band created with Bob Dylan and Ronnie Hawkins, as well as various song sketches. The DVD's nine film clips include rare and previously unreleased concert performances, a filmed studio jam, and three songs The Band performed on "Saturday Night Live" in 1976, never before issued in their entirety.

"A Musical History's" release concludes a comprehensive restoration campaign for The Band's entire Capitol Records catalog. In 2000 and 2001, The Band's original Capitol albums were remastered and reissued with bonus tracks: "Music From Big Pink" (1968); "The Band" (1969); "Stage Fright" (1970); "Cahoots" (1971); "Rock Of Ages" (1972); "Moondog Matinee" (1973); "Northern Lights-Southern Cross" (1975); "Islands" (1977); and a new "Greatest Hits" compilation was released.

By the late 1960s, The Band was one of the most popular and influential rock groups in the world, and the group's members shared an extensive collaborative history dating back to the late 1950s and early '60s. Between 1958 and 1962, the then-teenaged multi-instrumentalists Levon Helm (drums, vocals), Robbie Robertson (guitar, piano, vocals), Rick Danko (bass, vocals), Richard Manuel (keyboards, vocals, drums) and Garth Hudson (keyboards, horns) first performed and recorded together as members of the backing band for Ronnie Hawkins called the Hawks. In late 1963, the Hawks struck out on their own and became Levon & the Hawks, playing and recording under this name in 1964 and 1965.

In 1965, Robertson met with Bob Dylan in New York, just as Dylan was seeking an electric guitarist for his touring band. The Band was born, with all of the former Hawks backing Bob Dylan on the road from October 1965 through 1966 as he incensed audiences in the U.S., Australia and Europe, performing electric sets. Disheartened by the vocally disdainful 'folkie purist' audience response to their first plugged-in performances with Dylan, Helm left The Band in November 1965.

After the 1966 tour concluded, The Band woodshedded for the next year in upstate New York, often in the company of Bob Dylan, forging a highly original sound that in one way or another encompassed the panoply of American roots music: country, blues, R&B, gospel, soul, rockabilly, the honking tenor sax tradition, Anglican hymns, funeral dirges, brass band music, folk music, modern rock, fused and synthesized in ways that no one had ever thought possible before. Levon Helm re-joined The Band in 1967, as the group prepared to record their first full-length album, "Music From Big Pink." The Band's line-up remained intact until they disbanded in November 1976, following the live recording and Martin Scorsese's filmed documentation of their final concert for "The Last Waltz."

Released in 1968, "Music From Big Pink" received glowing reviews; a journalist for Life magazine wrote that The Band "dipped into the well of tradition and came up with a bucketful of clear, cool, country soul that washed the ears with a sound never heard before," and icons such as Eric Clapton and George Harrison extolled the virtues of the album in print. While it only reached the #30 slot on Billboard's album charts when it was initially released, over time it has become recognized as one of the most important and classic albums in the history of rock.

Between 1968 and 1976, The Band released seven albums, and two additional releases followed in 1977 and 1978. The aforementioned "Music From Big Pink" (1968) was adorned with an original folk art cover painting by Bob Dylan. The eponymous album "The Band" (1969) sailed into Billboard's Top 10 and is hailed as one of rock's seminal releases. "Stage Fright" (1970) was recorded at the Woodstock Playhouse without an audience (due to local government's worries about a potential fan rush on the town from the greater Northeast), and climbed to #5 on the album charts, the highest position any Band album would ever attain. "Cahoots" (1971) peaked at #21 on the chart. The double live album "Rock Of Ages" (1972) peaked at #6 on Billboard's album charts. "Moondog Matinee" (1973) was a collection of covers recorded in Bearsville and Hollywood which reached #28 on the chart. "Northern Lights-Southern Cross" (1975), which peaked at #26, was The Band's first studio recording of original material since 1971 (1974 had seen a studio album collaboration with Bob Dylan, "Planet Waves," and a live album from their subsequent tour, "Before The Flood"). "Islands" (recorded in 1975 and released in 1977) was The Band's final studio album, a collection of odds and ends they had not intended for a specific album. "The Last Waltz," filmed in 1976 by Martin Scorsese and recorded live with all-star ensemble of guest performers, was theatrically released with an accompanying 3-album soundtrack in 1978, capping The Band's original recorded legacy.

Although Richard Manuel, Rick Danko, Garth Hudson and Levon Helm got back together and went back on the road in 1983 under the name The Band, without all five original members it was never the same. Wracked by demons for far too long, in March 1986 Richard Manuel committed suicide in a Florida motel. In 1989, The Band was inducted into the Canadian Juno Hall of Fame and five years later they were accorded the same honor by the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. With the exception of Manuel, all of the former members of The Band have issued a variety of solo recordings over the years, enjoying successful careers as individuals. Sadly, Rick Danko passed away in his sleep on December 10, 1999.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Dark Horse Comics solicitations for October 2005: Nexus Archives and more

AEON FLUX #3 (of 4)
On sale October 19, FC, 32pg, $2.99

As the Bregnan government prepares to unleash their new defoliant
weapon on the dense jungle outside their walls, Aeon and Sithandra
infiltrate the heavily guarded labs with plans of sabotage. But even the Monican
Rebellion’s top agent is caught off guard, as escape becomes a matter
of life and death. Their mission jeopardized, her life draining from a
bullet hole, and the clock ticking towards a potentially genocidal
mistake, Aeon has little choice but to reveal her secret to her sister. But
hers is not the only secret revealed—the Bregnan government assaults
the Rebellion’s hideout, thanks to information provided by their
mysterious inside informant …

On sale October 12, b&w, 48pg, $3.99

Two new, complex characters come to the forefront of Hiroaki Samura’s
samurai epic! As Rin frets over Manji’s disappearance, she is surprised
by the arrival of two traveling warriors, the feisty, headstrong Döa
Yoshino and her huge, brutish companion, Isaku Yasono-ökami. Rin quickly
regrets her decision to let this strange couple stay with her, but her
detective work takes priority when she returns to Habaki Kagamura’s
stronghold to search for Manji. Meanwhile, Manji awakens to find himself
in a very disturbing situation … and the horrific reason behind
Kagamura’s interest in him becomes clearer!
• Winner of Japan’s prestigious Media Arts Award and America’s own
Eisner Award.

B.P.R.D.: THE BLACK FLAME #3 (of 6)
On sale October 26, FC, 32pg, $2.99

Liz Sherman awakens from a dream with a secret name of doom in her
throat, a secret that Roger comes closest to understanding. Meanwhile, The
Black Flame burns more darkly, lighting the way for his frog legion as
they shuffle that much closer to their destiny—a destiny that will
leave the Bureau broken, perhaps forever.
• Colorist Dave Stewart has been nominated for a 2005 Eisner Award for
his work on B.P.R.D. and Conan.


On sale November 30, SC, 160pg, FC, 7" x 10", $16.95

From the turbulent seas to the deepest, darkest jungles, the barbarian
Conan moves ever closer to his destiny as king and conqueror. Allied
with the deadly she-pirate Bêlit, Conan journeys further into the most
savage and untamed Hyborian lands, and into his own heart of darkness.
Collecting Conan the Barbarian #60-63, #65, #69-71.
It’s Sword and Sorcery at its finest!
• Presenting eight more issues from the celebrated Roy Thomas/John
Buscema Conan the Barbarian run, this volume features completely remastered color and all of the original story lettering.

On sale November 16, 2005, 5" tall, fully-painted, packaged in a
litho-printed full-color tin box and included is a vintage-style pinback
button, and booklet about the character and his creator, limited to 750
pieces, $49.95
Having produced nearly fifty "syroco" statues so far in our Classic
Comic Character series based on newspaper comic strips, Dark Horse is now
offering a new Classic Comic Book Character series, featuring
characters from a variety of comic book publishers.
The third statue in this series features North Am’s Magnus, Robot
Fighter, the karate-chopping hero of 4000 A.D.! An enduring creation of
comics legend Russ Manning, Magnus first appeared on newsstands in February
of 1963. Millions of readers followed the adventures of the only man
able to fight the malicious robots of the future. While Russ Manning’s
work on the Gold Key series lasted only twenty-one issues, his creation
has survived generations, influencing countless science fiction artists
and writers to this day.

On sale November 2, SC, 200pg, b&w, 5 3/4" x 8 1/4", $15.95
Haruo Hattori’s a country-fried cupcake, the sweetest dish at Club 9,
the most happening hostess bar in Tokyo’s notorious Ginza district.
She’s staying true to her fella back home, but her guileless beauty is one
major bull’s-eye for some of Tokyo’s most eligible bachelors, including
a down-on-his-luck baseball superstar, one of the country’s hottest
manga artists, and a bonafide super-rich playboy with fast-track matrimony
on his mind. And with her boyfriend off to Europe to study for the next
few years, will poor Haruo be able to stave off this onslaught of
affection? Collecting stories from Super Manga Blast! issues #37-#46.
• Club 9 is uproarious slice-of-life, fish-out-of-water comedy as
crafted by the inimitable creator of What’s Michael?, Makoto Kobayashi. A
hilarious look at Tokyo nightlife and Japanese culture, Club 9 is
flat-out, fresh-off-the-farm fun!

On sale October 19, FC, 32pg, $2.99

The award-winning team of Busiek and Nord continue their adaptation of
one of Robert E. Howard’s greatest Conan stories, with the second part
of "The Tower of the Elephant." Conan, at the side of Taurus, Prince of
Thieves, assaults the dreaded Elephant Tower—but deadly peril awaits at
every turn, from hungry lions to giant spiders, and it’ll take all his
barbarian skill merely to stay alive long enough to make it inside.
Yet, once inside, the tower holds secrets far stranger and darker than
anything Conan could have prepared for.
• Colorist Dave Stewart has been nominated for a 2005 Eisner Award for
his work on B.P.R.D. and Conan.
• Cary Nord and Thomas Yeates have been nominated for a 2005 Eisner
Award for Best Penciller/Inker or Penciller/Inker Team.

On sale October 5, FC, 32pg, $2.99

King Conan travels to the exotic land of Khitai, only to run afoul of
an evil sorcerer and his demonic retainers in this tale of silent shadow
warriors and ghastly monsters in the Far East.
When Conan receives an invitation from the Eastern Kingdom of Khitai to
open trade in precious jewels and spices, he decides that he will
travel into this long-mysterious land. Yet, to do so is perilous, as those
who have requested his company may have far more devious intentions, and
beasts unseen by Western eyes lurk amidst the shadows.
With words by fan-favorite scribe Akira Yoshida (X-Men/Fantastic Four;
Wolverine: Soultaker; Elektra: The Hand) and pictures by Paul Lee
(Detective Comics; Buffy: The Vampire Slayer; Lurid) the entire series is
topped off with covers by Pat Lee (Transformers; Darkminds; Warlands).
• Set many years in the future from the award-winning on-going series,
Conan and the Demons of Khitai marks Conan’s first appearance as King
in Dark Horse’s best-selling comics revival of the legendary fantasy

On sale November 2, SC, 216pg, b&w, 5" x 7", $12.95
Eden Volume One is both a brilliant love song to the post-apocalyptic
survival genre and the beginning of a deep exploration on man’s role in
the natural order. In the near future, a large portion of humanity is
wiped out by a brutal, new virus that hardens the skin while dissolving
internal organs. Those who aren’t immune are either severely crippled
or allowed to live with cybernetically enhanced bodies. Taking advantage
of a world in chaos, a paramilitary force known as the Propater topples
the United Nations and seeks world domination. Elijah, a young survivor
searching for his mother, travels towards the Andes Mountains with an
artificially intelligent combat robot. When he encounters a group of
anti-Propater freedom fighters, a maelstrom of unique characters unfolds.
Graphic, cyberpunk, and philosophical, Eden is a place where endearing
heroes face a constant struggle for survival and violent surprises wait
around every corner!
• From the pages of Afternoon, the same manga anthology that brought us
Blade of the Immortal and Oh My Goddess!
• Often compared to Katsuhiro Otomo’s Akira in both artistic execution
and storytelling scope, Hiroki Endo’s deep and beautiful Eden series is
finally available in English!
• Each volume comes shrink-wrapped and carries an 18+ content advisory.

On sale November 16, FC, 48pg, 6 5/8" x 10 1/6", $7.95

For more than ten years, pop culture cultists have revered and adored a
mysterious, brooding thirteen-year-old girl named Emily the Strange.
Nobody knows much about the young girl with a porcelain face and huge
eyes framed by black bangs, and her ever-present brood of black cats only
adds to the intrigue—but that hasn’t stopped a generation of rabid fans
from letting Emily put her spell upon them. Now Emily fans are invited
into her odd, mysterious world—a place where kitty friends talk, the
ghosts of famous weirdos come out to play, reality is never quite what it
seems, and—above all—a place where anyone who’s ever been considered a
little "strange" themselves will be made to feel right at home.
Dark Horse Comics and the creative minds behind Cosmic Debris are
thrilled to present the second issue of Emily, with all-new stories and art.
Each issue of Emily comics features 48 pages of black, white, and red
art (with the occasional outburst of full-color freakouts!),
illustrating a wacky range of Emily stories.
• Emily the Strange is the star of a best-selling line of merchandise
and fashion accessories from the creative brain trust known as Cosmic
Debris. Visit
• Also included in this issue is a bonus Emily fold-out poster
highlighting the theme of this issue and showing what Emily does best—"get

On sale November 30, HC, 736pg, b&w w/spot color, 8" x 12", $150.00

This second Sin City slipcase completes our oversized archival
editions, available only in these exceptional collections. The handsome 8"x12"
books feature the individual stories printed on high-quality paper
stock and showcase Miller’s atmospheric cover art from the original comics!
Created with serious Frank Miller collectors and art connoisseurs in
mind, these new archival editions are sure to satisfy!
• This slipcase holds Sin City volumes five through seven: Family
Values, Miller’s first direct-to-trade work; Booze, Broads, and Bullets, an
expansive compilation of short stories from the Town without Pity; and
Hell and Back, the longest Sin City story to date!
• This Library set also includes a special edition of The Art of Sin
City, a lush complement to these deluxe volumes. The Art of Sin City
extends the reach of the Eisner, Harvey, and National Cartoonists Society
award-winning series by showcasing content—such as Miller’s preliminary
sketches—that cannot be found elsewhere. Now the groundbreaking work
that sent a rush of adrenaline through the entire industry is available
in an attractive archival format!


On sale October 12, FC, 32pg, $.25

Now is the perfect time to get acquainted with the cult-hit that Wizard
calls "the most rip-snortin’ comics series to hit stands in years," as
Eisner award-winner Eric Powell and Dark Horse Comics present the
original The Goon #1 in a new 25 cent edition that includes a brand-new
short story and painted cover by none other than the illustrious Mr. Powell
Over the last few years, The Goon has earned both critical and popular
acclaim with its tales of a lone thug and his fight against a
never-ending onslaught of zombies, giant lizards, and killer robots. For one
measly quarter, see why Entertainment Weekly put The Goon on their "Must"
list and why Ain’t It Cool News said, "The Goon is a wild ride filled
with imaginaion, intrigue, horror, and laughs." You know you want to.
• 2005 Eisner nominee for Best Single Issue (or One-shot), Best
Continuing Series, Best Humor Publication, and Best Writer/Artist Humor.

On sale November 16, SC, 104pg, FC, 7"x 10", $13.95

B-movie megastar Bruce Campbell of Evil Dead, Army of Darkness, and
Bubba Ho-Tep fame comes to comics with this adaptation of his upcoming
feature film.
Campbell not only co-wrote the film with David Goodman, but directed
and starred in it as well. However, in order to see his vision realized
unadulterated by budgetary constraints, Campbell put the version of the
script he wanted to shoot into the hands of artists Rick Remender and
Hilary Barta.
Man with the Screaming Brain tells the story of a wealthy American
businessman determined to exploit the crippled economy of a former Soviet
state torn between communist roots and capitalist greed. But Campbell’s
character soon finds himself in the grip of a mad scientist with a
twisted brain-transplant scheme worthy of Dr. Frankenstein.
• Collecting the four issue miniseries.

On sale November 16, HC, 216pg, b&w & FC, 7" x 10", $49.95

On the distant moon of Ylum, an enigmatic man is plagued by nightmares.
He is forced to dream of the past. He dreams of real-life butchers and
tyrants, and what they have done.
And then he finds them, and kills them.
The year is 2841, and this man is Nexus, a godlike figure who acts as
judge, jury, and executioner for the vile criminals who appear in his
dreams. He claims to kill in self-defense, but why? Where do the visions
come from, and where did he get his powers? Though a hero to many, does
he have any real moral code? These are but some of the questions that
reporter Sundra Peale hopes to have answered. Collecting Nexus #1-3
(Vol. 1., black and white) and Nexus #1-4 (Vol. 2, full color), from
Capital Comics.
• A multiple Eisner Award-winning series that defined the careers of
acclaimed creators Steve Rude and Mike Baron, Nexus is a modern classic
not to be missed!
• Printed on high-quality paper stock and features a newly painted
cover by Steve Rude.

On sale November 2, SC, 192pg, b&w & FC, 7" x 10", $19.95

Oh My Goddess! Colors is Dark Horse’s English-language edition of a
special collection first published in Japan. What’s inside? Original
publisher Kodansha, working with artist Kosuke Fujishima, produced color
versions of four of the best-loved stories from the series, each centering
on one of the goddesses. "The Number You Have Dialed Is Incorrect" is
the one which started it all, as Belldandy appears when Keiichi reaches
The Goddess Technical Help Line. Belldandy’s big sister Urd becomes
small in "Urd’s Fantastic Adventure," and in "Crazy Little Thing Called
Love," Skuld, the youngest of the sisters, wobbles through her first
romance while learning to ride a bicycle. Finally, "Are You Being Served?"
brings in the Fourth Goddess, the vampish Peorth, when Keiichi misdials
again to reach Belldandy’s rival agency…the Earth Assistance Hotline!
In addition to the four color stories, the Oh My Goddess! Colors
collection contains a bonus original manga story by Fujishima fan Yoshitou
Asari. And if that doesn’t do the trick, Kosuke Fujishima weighs in with
an eight-page profile of the Goddesses. Plus, an eighteen-page
"Encyclopedia of Goddess Terminology," cross-referencing the people, places,
and events of the first twenty-two volumes of OMG!, four pages on the
cars, bikes, and planes of the series, the two-page "Rules of the Goddess’
World," and a six-page thumbnail guide to the OMG! story chapters. Oh
My Goddess! Colors is the ultimate official fan companion to the manga
• Published in the original Japanese format!

On sale October 26, FC, 32pg, $2.99

Detective Charlie Northern continues his investigation into the
possible murder of a highly influential cardinal, as the superstar creative
team of Paul Jenkins and Humberto Ramos unveil a mystery of supernatural
proportions in the Vatican City.
Northern starts rounding up witnesses, only to find that someone seems
to have gotten to them first. Questions lead to more questions, and
soon, Northern’s prodding into dark places puts his life in grave danger.

On sale November 30, SC, 144pg, FC, 7" x 10", $17.95

Many on both sides of the Clone Wars have been wounded or killed. But
the war has taken its toll on the survivors, too.
Consumed by the belief that the Dark Jedi Asajj Ventress still lives,
Obi-Wan Kenobi has temporarily forsaken his duties and recruited Anakin
Skywalker in his desperate hunt for Ventress.
But Anakin believes that Obi-Wan is chasing a ghost—because he himself
killed Ventress. And Anakin’s doubts about his former Master’s quest
are not assuaged when, following the trail of the rumors of Ventress’
existence, they walk into a trap set by their old enemies, the bounty
hunter Durge and Count Dooku!
A tale that tests the strengths of the bonds of brotherhood!
• Collects Obsession #1-5 and the 2005 Free Comic Book Day comic.
• Dark Horse has sold over 85,000 copies of the Star Wars: Clone Wars
graphic novels!

"The Wrong Side of the War" part 3 (of 5)
On sale October 5, FC, 32pg, $2.99

Dissent in the ranks! Janek Sunber finds himself at odds—and at
gunpoint—with his fellow officers over the treatment of Imperial prisoners.
Hardly an auspicious start to his new assignment, and made all the worse
because the internal conflict blinds the Imperials to the presence of
Rebel infiltrators in their midst!
But the biggest shock to Sunber—and the Rebels—is yet to come, from a
most unexpected quarter! Allegiances are strained, identities are
revealed, and a major strike against the Empire is in the offing. An issue
that should not be missed!
• The return of Lieutenant Janek Sunber (the lead character in "To the
Last Man," Empire #16-18).

"The Hidden Enemy" part 2 (of 3)
On sale October 26, FC, 32pg, $2.99

A battle rages on the Wookiee homeworld of Kashyyyk. Victory is in
sight for the clone armies of the Republic, led by Jedi Masters Yoda,
Luminara Unduli, and Quinlan Vos, but none of them are aware that victory
will lead to a betrayal that will change the galaxy forever. There is one
chance to survive, and one course remaining to any who
survive …
The fate of the Jedi Order is sealed, but a single Jedi may find a path
to the future … or to the grave.
• Covering events during and after Revenge of the Sith!

On sale October 19, FC, 32pg, $2.99

On Wedge Antilles’ home planet, Corellia, he and the other members of
the Rogue Squadron are all that stand between an unarmed populace and a
terrorist attack by remnants of Palpatine’s Imperial forces.
Even the budding Jedi powers of Luke Skywalker won’t be enough to tip
the scales in the Rogues’ favor, and to snatch victory from the jaws of
this defeat may cost the life of one of their own!
High-flying action with the most popular heroes of the expanded
• A return to one of the most requested story lines in Star Wars

On sale October 19, b&w, 128pg, $5.99

With the Cannon God Exaxxion team facing a Riofaldian assault squad,
"Grandpa" Kano dons a nearly indestructible gun-suit to help his beloved
androids defend their home base. Makoto Kobayashi’s extended What’s
Michael? storyline continues! His hilarious "Planet of the Cats" series
finds human astronauts suffering under the paws and whims of bipedal,
feline captors. Would you have the strength to perform circus tricks for a
crowd of attention-challenged cats? Fighting for their lives against
super-powered terrorists, the heroes of Seraphic Feather cope with a
deadly breach in their ship’s hull. The Shadow Star cast recuperates from
the events in the "Grudges" story arc, and Shiina seeks a safe haven
from further Shadow Dragon attacks.

On sale October 19, FC, 32pg, $2.99

Monsters fighting monsters! Monsters eating monsters! Monsters tearing
monsters into little monster pieces! From one of comics’ best and
weirdest talents comes the creepiest new offering from Dark Horse’s horror
line—The 13th Son.
Created, written, and drawn by Kelley Jones, The 13th Son is the story
of the world’s ultimate monster, how he came to exist, and what this
hideous creature has in store for our ill-fated world.
Born to a young woman driven to insanity and black magic by the deaths
of her previous children, the 13th Son is a creature like nothing this
world has seen before. Humans are not his target. It’s the other
monsters who walk this world—the Wendigo, werewolves, ghouls, zombies, and
vampires—who live in fear of his enormous and terrifying powers. And what
those powers are setting into motion is a horror beyond your deepest,
darkest nightmares.

On sale November 2, SC, 192pg, b&w, 5" x 7", $9.95

Unlike the subtitle of this new installment of Trigun Maximum, our
hero, Vash the Stampede isn’t exactly experiencing the happiest of days.
Rather, his struggle with his brother-in-destruction, Knives, is
escalating to extreme heights. But wait, before we get to the frantic action,
creator Yasuhiro Nightow would like readers to know about these boys’
mysterious pasts, and uses almost half of this issue presenting the lives
of the two supermen before they fell to the dusty planet. This volume
of Trigun Maximum promises not only past history, but future frenzy. For
instance, you’ll soon discover that not only is Vash not the only one
of his kind, but neither is Wolfwood.
• Presented in a fashion directly approved by Nightow himself, Trigun
Maximum is so authentic that ... well, it could hardly be more so.
Includes facetious inner cover art and Nightow’s hilarious back page

On sale October 26, b&w, 24pg, $2.99

World-renowned storyteller Stan Sakai treats his readers to an all-out
samurai brawl in this issue of Usagi Yojimbo! Fans of the rabbit ronin
are well accustomed to Sakai’s deft hand with dynamic fight scenes, and
this issue gives him plenty to work with—Usagi and Tomoe, captured and
forced to work in Lord Sanada’s illegal gold mine, lead a slave revolt!
But they face Tomoe’s murderous cousin, Noriko "the blood princess,"
and with her a horde of Sanada’s deadly samurai. To make matters worse,
the slaves only have shovels and hoes in their battle against lethal
steel swords! And in the ensuing chaos, someone will be trapped inside the
mine … find out who in part six of "The Treasure of the Mother of
• 2005 Eisner Award Nominee for Best Writer/Artist.
• The Art of Usagi Yojimbo has been nominated for Best Publication
Design and Best Comics-Related Book.

On sale November 16, SC, 80pg, FC, 6" x 9", $8.95

Every year, publishers and movie studios churn out piles of new zombie
yarns, but none have rivaled the originality of this tale about a
reanimated priest from an ancient cult and the zombie outbreak he creates in
order to sacrifice mankind to his dark gods. Dark horror and high
adventure mingle as a team of heroes race against an unstoppable evil bent
on the end of mankind.
• Written by Hellboy and B.P.R.D. creator Mike Mignola!
• Collecting the original three-issue miniseries, plus sketchbook
material and updated commentary by Pat McEown, this new edition features a
new cover by Mike Mignola and is the perfect package to reintroduce
readers to this contemporary horror classic.

Pop Artifacts! DC Comics Pepsi glasses

Now you can pretend to shoot a man in Reno just to watch him die!

With your own Johnny Cash action figure!

From Action Figure Insider:

Approx. 7 inches tall, this figure is based off the classic photo of Johnny
Cash "walking the line" from the Fall of 1969, at the height of Cash’s
popularity when his records were outselling even the Beatles! The figure
will have articulation as well as a guitar and base.

Look for the first of SOTA Toys’ Johnny Cash figures in late Fall 2005.

Jessica who?

Movie producer Roger Corman and the stars of his not so fantastic "Fantastic Four" film--done quickly and cheaply in 1994--are calling for the DVD release of their FF flick, the Fresno Bee reports.

"The film had a budget of about $1.2 million," Corman says between chats with the cast members. "That was a pretty big budget for one of my movies."

By modern standards, especially for a movie that requires many special effects, that budget is on the low end. More was spent on producing one episode of the sci-fi TV series "Star Trek: Enterprise." That's why some of the effects don't look all that special in the movie.

"Mine was the easiest special effect to do," [Invisible Woman actress Rebecca] Staab says. "To become invisible, all I had to do was freeze, wait for the cameras to stop and then move out of the scene."