Welcome back to another edition of ATR.

It?s the week before Wizard World LA, which means major announcements are coming in the next couple of days. Luckily, we have no shortage of news and rumors in the interim?

Plotting A Course

There are some interesting rumors coming out of DC this week regarding discontent among some of their ?B-list? writers. The story going around is that they aren?t plotting their own books anymore. Instead plots are being handed down to them from the DC editorial team. Editorial driven books is not a foreign concept in the comic industry, but some of the writers are said to be extremely angry over this. However, the feeling is that not much will come of it because they all need their jobs. It?s worth noting that the writers on DC?s big books don?t seem to be having the same problem?

This Has A ?Holy Bat Manual Labor!? Factor of Four Out of Ten


Mutually Exclusive

In other DC related rumors, I hear three more artists have signed exclusive deals: Joe Benitez, Matt Clark and Derec Donovan (formerly known as Derec Aucoin). The way I hear it, Benitez is taking over Superman/Batman, Clark is staying on Outsiders and Donovan will be drawing a 12 issue maxi-series as part of DC?s ?third wave? of new titles?

This Has A ?Made Men? Factor of Nine Out of Ten


Hungry, Hungry Zombies

I?m told that Marvel Zombies will not be coming out as a trade paperback following the conclusion of the miniseries. Instead, the plan seems to be to release it straight as an oversized hardcover?

This Has A ?Bring That Chess Club Brain Of Yours? Factor of Eight Out of Ten


I Swear To God

Over at Jinxworld, Tom Beland left the following message regarding the future of his self published title, True Story, Swear To God:

TRUE STORY, SWEAR TO GOD #17

    will be my last issue under my label “Clib’s Boy Comics” and THAT’S because:

WE’RE MOVING TO IMAGE!!

Yep, I’ll be signing the contract next week and TSSTG will bear the symbol of the mighty “I” in the corner of the cover. This is a very huge deal to me, personally, because it eliminates things like production costs, shipping, storage, etc… and allows me to just focus on making the books.

Image also gives me a spot in the front of previews, which is great for sales, since I’m buried in the middle of that huge thing.

And most of all… it’s really a cool group of people at Image. I got to meet everyone there at Wondercon in San Francisco last month and they’re all great. In fact, I’ve been told on more than one occassion that I have an uncanny resemblence to Art Adams. That was reinforced when Mike Allred spun me around and tried to give me a huge man-hug at the con. He yelled out a “DUUUUUDE” before stopping, holding his arms out for about a minute before I said “I’m not Art.” It was hilarious. I’ve even been asked to sign a few copies of Fantastic Four from fans who thought I was him.

SooooOOOooooo anyhoo… look for TSSTG #1 by Image in August. Believe it or not, I’m going to attempt to go monthly on this series and hopefully, you’ll all dig it. It’s really an amazing feeling to know that a company as big as Image would have an interest in my own work and I’m looking forward to being part of the I-Team!!

This Has A ?Let The Love Shine In? Factor of Ten Out of Ten


Knock, Knock, Knockin? On Heaven?s Door

George Perez has posted an update about his page count for Infinite Crisis #6. In his message, Perez states:

    Due to scheduling conflicts and time constrictions I will only be drawing 5 pages of issue 6, instead of the originally planned 12. Three of those pages are being reproduced from my pencils while the others (a double-pager) have been pencilled and inked by me.

So? not the full issue and not 17 pages. Five pages only.

What could have caused these conflicting numbers?

That?s right, I blame Superboy Prime. This year?s Scarlet Witch.

This Has A ?Continuity Wave? Factor of Five Out of Ten


A Late Delivery From Death

One more George Perez item this week. It seems that four of the five pages done by Perez for CrossGen?s unfinished Lady Death/Sojourn have been posted online by art collector and noted intellectual property lawyer, Michael Lovitz.


This Has A ?Reigning Sigils? Factor of Seven Out of Ten


City of Stone

In a recent post on his website, Gargoyles creator, Greg Weisman left the following message for fans of the series:

      I’ve been informed that the Season Two Volume One

Gargoyles

    DVD has not sold as many units as the Season One Gargoyles DVD did. That’s not particularly surprising, since it has a higher price point. But let’s be honest, the lower sales are putting the release of Season Two Volume Two at risk.

To be clear, I’m not asking anyone to spend money they don’t have and/or need for things like food, shelter, education, etc. But if you’ve just been lazy and have been putting off buying the darn thing… well, pal, help us all out by ponying up sooner than later.

And ALL OF YOU — PLEASE DO WHATEVER YOU CAN TO SPREAD THE WORD!!!!

It is NOT a given that Season Two Volume Two will come out!

In related news, Weisman also reports that the new Gargoyles comic is still on track for a June release. As reported earlier, Weisman will write the series, with Dave Hedgecock and William Terrell providing interiors and colors respectively. Greg Guler (character designer on the Gargoyles TV series) is doing covers for the book, including the one shown below?

There?s also a Gargoyles convention coming up in June, to be held in Los Angeles.

This Has A ?Shadows of The Past? Factor of Ten Out of Ten


Taking Umbrage

Steve Murphy and Mike Hawthorne (Hysteria) are teaming on a new three issue miniseries called Umbra. From what I?ve heard, it takes place in Iceland back in 1999 and a young police forensics technician who discovers a ?very strange skeleton? which sets of series of bizarre and violent occurrences?

Hawthorne has mentioned it before in some of his of his online interviews. However, he said something interesting in this one that seems to have been overlooked:

      I have another mini series coming out from Mirage Studios who has joined forces with Image to put the books out; Kind of like Beckett’s deal with Image, I would imagine. It’s called

Umbra

    ?

I don?t recall hearing anything else about a deal between Mirage and Image. I do know that Image is publishing the first issue of Umbra in June. And the interview was conducted in January, but I?m not sure what the deal is?

This Has An ?Oasis? Factor of Seven Out of Ten


Aquaman Almost Killed Me

On Thursday, at the Family Guy William S. Paley Festival event in Los Angeles, Seth Green shared a story about how his friend, Hugh Sterbakov (writer of The Freshmen) nearly lost his life several years ago, thanks to Aquaman. After the event, Sterbakov related the story in his own words:

    I?m can?t believe Seth remembers that? he has a much better memory than I do. The basic story is that, back when I was in the fifth grade, I was living on the third floor of an apartment building with my father and I woke up in the middle of the night when the smoke detector was going off. And there was a fire? not the kind of fire where you see a lot of flames, it was the kind of fire where your room fills with smoke.

My dad called me out to the hallway and he was really frantic, saying ?we?ve got to get out of here.? And I just freaked out. Then I remembered this Superfriends public service announcement, where Aquaman says ?stop drop and roll? and he kind of drops to his knees with this big smile on his face and goes under the smoke and walks right out of the building. So it?s clear to me that the thing I need to do is drop down on my knees and walk right out of the building and show my dad there?s still time. So, I went to the door and got down on my knees? and there was smoke everywhere.

Like Seth said, what Aquaman doesn?t tell you is that it just doesn?t work if you?re not on the same floor as the fire. So I ran right into a wall (laughs). I scrambled right into a wall, hit my head and collapsed in the dark (the fire had killed the electricity). And I was gonna die. My dad couldn?t find me and I was kind of semi-conscious and I didn?t hear him call for me.

Finally, my dad found me and dragged me back into the apartment, put a wet towel over my head and led me out of the building. I had really bad lung damage from that night. The doctors told me I had about the equivalent of smoking a pack a day for five years all in one night. I was coughing up black stuff for days? In today?s modern society, I probably would have sued the Superfriends and gotten millions of dollars. But at the time, it was just part of a funny joke? When I explain the story to my friends, especially in my later years when I went to college and I tell them the story of how Aquaman almost killed me, people really laugh at that.

Sterbakov also spoke about what?s happening with The Freshmen now that the first mini has concluded.

      Officially, where we stand right now is that Top Cow is waiting to see how well the trade paperback sells before deciding if they want to do a sequel. From what I?ve heard in the last week, they?re actually very pleased with the way it?s selling, so I think things are looking good. If we don?t get to go forward with them, it would be extremely unfortunate. Top Cow really did support us, but if it can?t be done with them, we?ll take it elsewhere. Seth?s about to start promoting the

Robot Chicken

      DVD on the mainstream media networks and he?s going to pushing

The Freshmen

    trade paperback at the same time. Hopefully, we?ll be back on the shelves before the end of the year with a new miniseries (of seven or eight issues).

This Has An ?Ax-Cell-Erator? Factor of Ten Out of Ten


Who Shot Adam Fortier?

And alas, there was no shortage of suspects?

The above pic was first spotted online at Christopher Butcher?s blog and was originally taken for an article that appeared last January in The Globe and Mail, a Canadian newspaper. In his blog entr?e, Butcher reveals that had the deal with Ardustry Entertainment gone forward, that Speakeasy would have gone after ?properties were based on HBO’s original content, including comic/graphic novel material based on The Sopranos, Deadwood, and Rome, among other properties.?

I wonder if that has any connection to the rumors from last November, that had Carnivale poised to make a potential comeback as a comic book?

This Has An ?It?s Not TV? Factor of Five Out of Ten


One more announcement to make: Next week?s column will be coming to you from Wizard World Los Angeles, so expect it either late Sunday or Monday.

See you in LA.

Later,
Blair

PS If anyone has any rumors, stories or news to share, please email me at blairm@silverbulletcomicbooks.com. Thanks to everyone who has been sending stuff in. It?s greatly appreciated.


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