Hello there it?s me again. By now it should all be out in the open and who I am has been announced. Before I get into the rumours and gossip I?ve got a request:

I?m looking for a core group of Rage-mites to assist in digging out rumours, gossip or just plain news. Keep your ears to the ground, check the message boards all over the ?net, ask a few questions, and if you hear anything you feel either needs investigation or should be reported, then let me know. You can have as much or as little credit as you want (and if you want to be anonymous I will never reveal my sources without prior consent). Write in now, you never know what little snippet of news may actually be the tip of the iceberg to something much better!

This Has A Self-Serving Value Of 10 Out Of 10


Whoops!

Well, although I intended my reign to be full of sweetness and light, after just one week I?ve managed annoy a few people already. I don?t want to dig into too much detail (that?s for me, the pub, and a round of drinks to know), but one thing in particular needs looking at.

Last week I said:

?All sorts of high profile artists and writers (along with several of the next bright young things) have been approaching [com.x] as an alternative to the likes of Image (who demand big bucks up front) and CrossGen (who have an undeserved reputation) to publish their creator owned projects?

I have since received the following from Eric Stephenson at Image:

?Alan, just so you know: We DON?T demand big bucks up front. We don’t demand ANYTHING up front. Image makes it money off the backend.?

I apologise unreservedly for my error and I stand corrected. By way of a further apology I will be publishing full details of what the situation is at Image in the near future in an interview with Eric.

This Has A Whoops Scotties Value Of 10 Out Of 10


Ministry of Space In Further Trouble?

Maybe one of the most long-awaited final issues in comics, Ministry of Space #3 is supposedly on its way according to writer Warren Ellis at his website. Delayed originally due to family and health problems, the delay currently is attributed on this website to artist Chris Weston?s new baby? of course, most of us know that Chris?s fine work on The Filth is really to blame, with four issues already out, another nine to go, and a hellish schedule, isn?t time for Ministry of Space #3 just impossible?

All this is known to regular rumour-mongers, but here?s a twist you might not be aware of?

During an interview piece for the Italian website Ultrazine concerning Alan Moore, Chris Weston had this to say:

?Celebrity is no longer just a cult; it’s a bloody craze! It’s poisoned every single popular art-form I can think of, including comics. I don’t need to tell you about all the so-called “big-name” writers who put so much time and effort into promoting themselves, they actually forget to sit down and write some decent stories.?

Who else could Weston be talking about here? Looks like there may be more to the problems with Ministry of Space than meets the eye.

I should really print the rest of the paragraph from the Chris Weston article just to keep my feet on the ground and make sure I don?t get too full of myself:

?Worse than that, there’s even gossip columns devoted to the activities of comics creators… that has got to be the most ridiculous idea I’ve ever heard.?

Well I never?

This Has A Wait-And-See Value Of 8 Out Of 10


What Is Really Happening With Peter Parker: Spider-Man?

From Deep Stoat:

?Zeb Wells will be writing issues 51 and 52 of Peter Parker:Spider-Man, which will be the last issues before it is cancelled. Jenkins and Ramos get a new Spidey title? Wells?s issues of PP:SM will be drawn by Ramos’s understudy, Francisco Herrera, who has a style similar to that of his mentor, if not a little cartoonier.?

Further:

?Wells?s arc is the story of the Shocker having a mid-life crisis after the collapse of Hammer Industries. He sets off with a fellow former employee of Mr. Hammer and tries to make one last score. All with a twang of desperation and self-doubt. Should be fun.

?November sees the publication of Tangled Web #20 with Wells and Dean Haspiel. It involves JJJ being forced into psycho-therapy after his second heart attack. Needless to say he and the psychiatrist butt heads on a few issues. We get to see what made Jonah the man he is today.?

One has to wonder how Herrera?s artwork will be received by the hardcore fans. Only time will tell.

Is Paul Jenkins taking a break so that Marvel can try out someone new on a dying title?

Why does he think it will end with #50 and relaunch the following month with a new #1 (see last week?s column for details)?

Is he catching up on other projects, and taking advantage of the opportunity presented by the end of the title?

Has he fallen really behind and desperately needs the break?

Is he planning a big special, has he got a couple of projects on the boil?

Or is he just getting together a nice run of work for his new Spidey title?

Write in, Paul, and let us know.

This Has A Marvelous Value Of 9 Out Of 10


More From Marvel

Further to certain rumours, Agent X provides the following:

?X-MEN UNLIMITED IS NOT BEING CANCELLED, AN EXCITING LINE-UP IS PROMISED FOR FUTURE ISSUES.?

Agent X didn?t specify anything further on this at the moment but we have been assured that All The Rage will be amongst the first to find out? And why he felt he had to shout about this news, I don?t know!

Watch this space.

This Has A U-Turn Rating Of 8 Out Of 10


Daredevil Strikes Back

A rather wild rumour has reached my attention. After allegedly writing Dark Knight Strikes Again to pay for his new house, Frank Miller is now apparently going to build an extension. The rumour has it that he will be returning to Daredevil (a title in which he wrote some of the most definitive work on the character, ever) to do a story in the style of his work in DK2.

Personally, I don?t put much stock in this rumour and I think some of the fan comments forwarded to me are very unfair:

?I hear that Matt Murdock?s feet will be bigger than Side-Show Bob?s!?

?I heard they are returning to the yellow costume as it will suit Lynn Varney?s color pallet more??

Play nice now guys.

That said, if you ask nicely I?ll print a snippet of the alleged script next week.

This Has A Wildly Unsubstantiated Value Of 2 Out Of 10


CrossGen Crisis?

Another rumour I?ve not been able to find out too many details on. It has been brought to my attention that a VERY HIGH profile creator has been taking legal advice with regard to their contract with CrossGen, specifically the lock-in clause preventing creators from working for other publishers after leaving CrossGen.

I?m not allowed to reveal any more than this at the moment but I will keep my ear to the ground on this and bring you more when I know it. Or when I?m allowed to say.

This could end up being rather big?

This Has A Architectural Design Value 1 Out Of 10


Millar Needs Help, Seriously!

Just as the column was put to bed, this comes in:

?I’m going to be doing a series of heavy interviews called THE CHAIR with Marvel, DC and CrossGen over the next three weeks. This is everything you’ve ever wanted to ask them and I plan to have them squirming like wasps under a microscope with questions of Hannibal Lecter-like incisiveness. Play your part and go to the News and Rumors forum at MillarWorld today where you’ll find a sticky thread gathering questions for each of these industry head honchos. Ooh, I’m looking forward to this lot. The first victim is going to be Mark Alessi next Friday. Threads close for Alessi on Wednesday night and the interrogation will be conducted on Thursday.?

Thanks Mark, what need will people have for gossip columns if the industry insiders are going to reveal everything here? Seriously check out Mark?s web site and get your questions in now.

This Has A Hot-Off-The-Press Value Of 10 Out Of 10


Haven?t I Seen This Before?

Have you heard the rumour that all the best comics around today are just rehashes of old stuff? Mark Millar confirms it:

?Ultimate Spider-Man has been based loosely on the best run Spidey ever had (hello, Lee and Ditko), but X-Men didn’t really go nuclear until Claremont and Byrne worked their magic twenty years ago and these are where I’VE been looking. Even The Ultimates is just a retread of the comics I discovered as a twelve year old when Alan Moore and Alan Davis wondered, perhaps for the first time, what superheroes would be like in the real world. The plots might bear little resemblance to Marvelman and Captain Britain, but I think I’ve spent the last twelve months subconsciously trying to find that realistic tone which shook me in my Doc Martin boots. Moore and Davis made me want to sit here and make shit up for a living.?

Nothing wrong with it, hell if you?ve got to admit that one of your best works ever was heavily influenced by another creator you?d want that creator to be Alan Moore!

This Has A Bow Down To The Bearded One Value Of 10 Out Of 10


Sign Out

Another week, another column. Please indulge me to repeat myself, I NEED YOUR HELP!!! Send in your stuff now!

I had planned to sign off by saying I was sat in sun lit back garden of a good friend, drinking Pimms and smoking a fine Cuban cigar. As it is I?m in his front room with a screaming baby (poor Bruce has a cold and he?s teething, he?s normally so good) and my wife has go off with him to look at Land Rovers. I?m off to have some lunch.

TTFN and keep the stuff coming in, many thanks,

Alan Donald


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