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01/10/14 @ 2:10 pm EST
Source: Dynamite
After years at Marvel Comics, Fred Van Lente has been stretching his legs with some varied and some lesser-known heroes. Whether it’s Archer & Armstrong helping relaunch and revive the Valiant Comics line, various Conan the Barbarian stories paying tribute to the fantasy world that Robert E. Howard created, or now with Magnus: Robot Fighter bringing Gold Key back to life at Dynamite with artist Cory Smith, Van Lente has gravitated to offbeat heroes who often have moral quandaries that make them appear less-than-heroic.

We talked with Van Lente about the Magnus relaunch, his plans for the character, what’s appealing about working with the non-big two comic companies, and why answering philosophical questions during karate chops is awesome.

Newsarama: Let’s talk about Magnus: Robot Fighter, Fred. It’s kind of funny, you were involved with the Valiant relaunch, and now you’re involved with what many remember as the “other half” of the company with the Gold Key titles. How did you get involved with this, with Dynamite?

Fred Van Lente: This was just a bizarre coincidence. I was hanging out with my friend Nate Cosby on the day he first had a conversation with Dynamite about heading up the Gold Key line as editor. I was describing some of the characters – I actually remember reading the Gold Key comics back in the 70s, when they were reprinted under “Western Publishing.”

So I started talking about Magnus, and I thought one of the things that you could do with him that would be fun would be a robot version of They Live, the famous John Carpenter movie where aliens have taken over in a body snatchers kind of deal. So I thought what if that was robots, instead of aliens, and only Magnus can see them. From that kernel of an idea, the whole thing mutated into something semi-similar to what I had been talking about originally, but super cool. Nate was on board from the beginning. I got the gig sort of because I happened to be standing around and said “why don’t we do this!?”

Finally, by the end of the evening and many beers later, we realized we had hit on a super cool way to take the series.

Nrama: So aspiring comic writers, take note, hang out with Nate Cosby and give him beer.

Van Lente: Right. Editors in general.

Nrama: The premise here sounds a little Cylon-ish, a little Battlestar-inspired. Is that something you’re deriving from at all?

Van Lente: Not really. Like I said, that was the initial – that was the 2 beers in idea. It really mutated into something a bit different. In essence, Magnus finds himself awakened in a world where robots have completely taken over humanity, for what they claim to be humanity’s best interest. They are also sort of ruled by a theology where the highest thing a robot can achieve is to emulate living things as much as possible. Magnus has been raised by 1A, a renegade artificial intelligence who wants to liberate NorthAm, the city where he lives, from the Church of the Singularity – the robot religious fanatics.

Magnus has to fight his way through a phalanx of many different kinds of robots, and along the way maybe learn that 1A isn’t entirely on the up-and-up himself. So there’s good humans, and bad humans and good robots and bad robots, and Magnus has to navigate all of this, both morally and through kicking the crap out of robots and punching their heads off.

Nrama: Okay, good to hear there’s the kicking the crap out of robots part, because this sounds pretty heavy here. There are questions of what life is and religious questions…

Van Lente: What is the real? What is natural? What is human? These are all great questions, and they will be answered with karate chops! Well, not with karate chops; they’ll be answered during karate chops (laughs).

Nrama: What makes you think about those kinds of questions, and makes you want to tell stories in comic books evaluating them?

Van Lente: Well, the major thing we’re adjusted to in our age, the internet and smart phone era, is the immediacy of us being around each other all the time thanks to Twitter, Facebook, fine sites such as Newsarama. The obvious question, I think, is that when it comes to the real day-to-day relationships we have with each other… on one hand we have what we tell each other on facebook, in interviews like what I’m doing right now, this is what we’re telling people “this is the real me.” Are you different when you make public proclamations on twitter versus when you’re dealing with your family members versus when you’re dealing with coworkers? We all have different guises that we put on – benignly, we don’t have to be putting one over on anyone – but it’s just the normal way we relate to each other.

Dealing with robots as far as technology and the robot religion and everything else is a good way to explore those issues in a fun, action, science fiction adventure kind of way.

Nrama: As your comic book writing has evolved over the years, you’ve notably moved into some of the smaller company-owned characters versus the big ones. Are there specific advantages or challenges that makes that appeal to you?

Van Lente: Well, it’s easier to make them your own.

Whenever I get offered a job, the main question for me is, can I do anything interesting with this? Both in a way that interests me and in a way that interests anybody else, to keep the book alive via sales! It’s not so much that the companies are smaller, it’s that when you get characters like Magnus that have not appeared that recently – the Dark Horse revival notwithstanding – there’s more room to wiggle. The public doesn’t have as much of a solidified opinion of what that’s supposed to be. Your leash gets let out a bit more, and you can have more fun with the characters. It’s not that Marvel and DC don’t have great lesser known characters that they’re not doing a lot with. I loved the Grant Morrison Animal Man and the old Doom Patrol, and Bob Layton Hercules, and the Batman and the Outsiders – all these weird, niche books. That’s definitely what I’m more interested in working with. It’s just more fun!

Nrama: Is your run on Magnus a limited series or open-ended?

Van Lente: It is open-ended. My contract is for “x” number of issues, but hopefully it’s successful and we’re able to go beyond that. I have a very distinct idea of what I want to do for the first 12 issues. It’s kind of a self-contained idea, but definitely leaves the door open for more.

Nrama: What style of science fiction would you say you’re going for here? Are you going for the flashy kind we commonly see in theaters (and comics) today, or are you going for something closer to modern day, more of the “hard science fiction” of the past?

Van Lente: Great question. A lot of it has to do with the setting. Magnus, the setting is slightly different than the original. In the original story NorthAm was like Mega City One in Judge Dredd – they called it that because it literally stretched from the Atlantic to the Pacific.

This NorthAm is a little different, I don’t want to spoil it too much because of the story, but in this NorthAm, the robots have sort of rebuilt North America with all the boring parts cut out. Sorry, flyover country and all the major landmarks there. The comparison I keep making is that this is what the New York, New York casino is in Las Vegas to the actual New York. They just left in the greatest hits.

Nrama: So there’s a stalk of corn, but not all of Iowa.

Van Lente: (laughs) Exactly. There’s one corn field, and that represents most of the states I grew up in and around.

And why that’s the case, why North America had to be rebuilt, is a major reveal in the series. It’s also been constructed to look like early twenty-first century North America. The idea is, it’s a combination between the hypertech and the advanced, mixed with what we see right now.

Nrama: Very interesting. Well, with you, Nate, and Greg Pak all involved with the Gold Key revival here, are we going to see some crazy sound effects in these books?

Van Lente: HA! (laughs) Well, you’d be more likely to see that in Archer & Armstrong than Magnus: Robot Fighter. Magnus: Robot Fighter is not much of a crazy sound effects book. I generally have tried to keep that as an Incredible Hercules thing, and leave it there where it works so well.

Although, Greg and I have something in the very early planning stages that may demand the return of the crazy sound effects.

http://www.newsarama.com/19955-van-lente-s-magnus-robot-fighter-answers-philosophical-questions-with-karate-chops.html
09/19/18 @ 12:46 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment brings holiday cheer as Red Sonja gets her own holiday special! Authors Amy Chu (KISS, Red Sonja) and Erik Burnham (Ghostbusters, Red Sonja) team-up once again to find the Red Goddess in holiday hijinx. The 40-page Red Sonja Holiday Special will available December 5th, making it the perfect gift for comics fans everywhere.

Featuring cover artwork by the talented Leonardo Romero (Hawkeye) and interior art by Ricardo Jaime (The Shadow) Red Sonja reminisces about the time she and Sir Max rescued a drunk Santa from the Grinch (Kulan Gath of course!) and learns the true meaning of Christmas.

“I don't believe a Red Sonja Holiday Special has ever been done before in her 45-year history, so this is a rare honor and challenge for me and my writing partner and friend Erik Burnham,” said co-author Amy Chu. “Erik calls me a "mad genius" but I say he is the true wizard with words. Erik is the only person I've ever co-written with, starting with KISS: The Demon miniseries and now Red Sonja. I love that I can lob the craziest ideas at him and he never says, nah, but, hey, that could work! ”

“I love working with Amy in general, but specifically on Red Sonja. I think we found a great rhythm in the last few issues of volume four and I'm excited to see what kind of shenanigans we can get the She-Devil into,” remarked co-author Erik Burnham. “Amy and I will talk about a few ideas, then she'll go off and write out an outline, filling it with everything she wants. I'll get her outline, find some surprises, and then try to surprise her as well when I build the final script. We've talked through several ideas for ...

09/18/18 @ 2:56 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment is set to premiere a book for the ages as comics legend Jean-Marc Lofficier (Moebius, Doctor Strange) and artist José Louis Ruiz Pérez (Tiger and the Eye) take Barbarella on an epic adventure in this oversized 48-page holiday special.

All aboard the Barbarella Cosmic Express for an intergalactic tale of Christmas and…murder?! Hélas, c'est vrai! Someone’s been given the ultimate gift, and jolly old St. Nick must figure out by whom. Enter the space siren for all holidays, Barbarella! Guest-starring France's Hexagon Comics' super-patriot hero: The Guardian of the Republic.

“The Barbarella universe as invented by Jean-Claude Forest and developed by Mike Carey, is a sci-fi one, so this "Santa" is not a fantasy creature, but a galactic entrepreneur named Niklaus Von Klaus, mildly obsessed with Xmas, who turned an entire planet into an Xmas-themed amusement park. Initially intended for children, the park has now become a lawless rendezvous point for all kinds of shady character,” remarked writer Jean-Marc Lofficier. “This book is the first crossover comics to feature a character from the French Hexagon Comics universe since Witchblade-Phenix-Sibilla: Blood Oath published by Top Cow in 2003, which I also wrote.”

“It’s such a pleasure to be working with Jean-Marc directly on this holiday special. We took great care to bring Barbarella back into comics and Jean-Marc has been an integral part of the process,” said Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite Entertainment. “This book is really a lot of fun. It’s got great holiday spirit and I hope fans old and new add it to their pull list for December!”

Barbarella was created by Jean Claude Forest in 1962 at the heart of the Sexual Revolution and is forever ingrained in pop culture after Jane Fonda’s unforgettable portrayal in ...

09/18/18 @ 2:53 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment announced today the creative team of Cullen Bunn (Pumpkinhead, Deadpool) and Blacky Shepherd (Pumpkinhead, Voltron) will be squaring off two horror icons this winter with Vampirella vs. ReAnimator! It's vampire versus mad scientist in a battle that threatens to tear the gates of the underworld asunder!

In Vampirella vs. ReAnimator, Herbert West--the ReAnimator--has long sought the secret to perfecting his reagent and break death’s hold on mankind once and for all. The key to his success lies in only one place--the forbidden tomb of the Aztec god of death! But disturbing sleeping gods is as troubling (to put it mildly) as raising the uncontrollable, murderous dead... especially when this deity is an ancient enemy of Vampirella of Drakulon!

“I just thought it was a great fit. I was attending a horror convention and talking with people and the idea just popped into my head,” said artist Blacky Shepherd. “Within an hour or so I had a rough idea of the story. At first, I thought they were such a natural fit that Dynamite must have already crossed the two characters over!”

“Here’s something I think about a lot when it comes to these two characters. When I was a kid reading Vampirella magazines at the drug store… and later when I rented ReAnimator on VHS for the first time… I felt like I was doing something I shouldn’t be,” added author Cullen Bunn. “There’s something… subversive about both characters, and I want to play that up. I want to lean into that feeling with this book”

“Hands down this is a really cool cross-over with these two characters. Blacky’s pitch was perfect and both Cullen and his work on our Pumpkinhead series was fantastic. They took great care of such a classic ...

09/18/18 @ 1:40 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment announces a major crossover event as Tim Seeley returns to his beloved creations to pit them against the world's greatest horror universe and brings back some of the series' most beloved slashers. Alongside artist Rapha Lobosco, Seeley’s Hack/Slashbattle the Chaos! Comics characters in Hack/Slash vs. Chaos!

In Hack/Slash vs. Chaos!, Cassie Hack, Slasher Hunter Supreme, thought she'd gotten rid of those teenager-perforating undead menaces. But now they're suddenly springing back to life! Cassie and Vlad are going to have to team up with mega-death dispenser Evil Ernie to stop the slaughter, putting them on a path that appears to lead through Chastity, the Chosen, and Purgatori.

Commenting on his upcoming crossover, author Tim Seeley remarked, “I bought the very first Evil Ernie series off the shelf when I was a teenager. It was black and white and gritty looking...it felt like something I wasn't supposed to show anyone else. Perfectly scary and creepy. Which I loved. I still think of Chaos! in those terms. These are the comics that you hide under your bed. They're just for you.”

“We've been waiting for the right story before publishing a new Chaos! series, and we knew we have it with Tim (Seeley), who is a true modern master of terror. And his script is perfectly paired with Rapha Lobosco’s art, which blows us away with every new page,” said Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite Entertainment. “ It's great to come full circle with Tim with this new event mini-series as he helped relaunch the Chaos! universe when we first began publishing them. Everything about this book is blood-soaked and beautiful.”

Chaos! Comics were first published in 1994 and ran until 2002. Dynamite Entertainment reignited the characters when they returned to comics in ...

08/21/18 @ 8:21 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment announces the original Queen of the Pin-ups returns this fall as writer David Avallone and artist Julius Ohta deliver, with thrilling pin-up style, the latest series to celebrate the legendary and infamous Bettie Page.

Bettie’s back in action with an adventure story that will keep readers guessing. The brand-new Queen of England has vanished, and MI6 believes UFOs were involved. Bettie is loaned out to British Intelligence to help investigate. By misadventure, she also ends up impersonating Elizabeth the Second…and hijinks ensue. It’s “The Prince and the Pauper”, or rather, “The Princess and the Pin-Up.”

"Writing the first Bettie Page series was pure joy, and I'm thrilled to be reunited with her for this great new series. I had more stories to tell with Bettie, and now I get to tell them,” said writer David Avallone. “Bettie will be visiting 1952 London and helping out another heroic, spunky brunette in her late twenties who's in over her head... Queen Elizabeth the Second. Plus MI6 and UFOs and other acronyms. It's going to be a lot of fun!"

“The first Bettie series was both a critical and fan favorite hit! David's schedule was filling up, and we wanted to keep his voice on the series! We wanted to wait for David's schedule to free up before telling new stories. We're excited to keep the legacy of one of the 20th century's most unforgettable performers alive in the pages of our comics,” said Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite Entertainment. “I can't wait to see what David delivers in this new series, and the art complements his scripts so well!”

Bettie Page has long been a staple in comics, dating back to her debut ...

08/21/18 @ 8:16 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment announces the publication of Red Sonja: The Ballad of the Red Goddess, a brand new original graphic novel from the masterful Roy Thomas which weaves a tale of intrigue, deception and the search for eternal youth!


This stunning graphic novel, produced co-publishing with leading Spanish publisher Planeta, cleverly teases the very origins of Sonja and features a legendary creative team fronted by writer Roy Thomas (Conan the Barbarian) and the incredible talent of artists Esteban Moroto (Savage Sword of Conan, Vampirella) and Santi Casas (Batman: Arkham Unhinged).

Red Sonja: The Ballad of the Red Goddess will be published as an oversized hardcover featuring a spectacular use of black, white and red throughout in a European format. Never before seen in English, this original graphic novel is an all-new tale, lost from the Nemedian Chronicles – until now! Dynamite is proud to bring this story to an English reading audience for the first time ever.

In addition to the standard hardcover edition, a limited signature edition of Red Sonja: The Ballad of the Red Goddess will be available for fans signed by Eisner Hall-of-Fame recipient Roy Thomas! Only 500 copies of this edition will be produced, so reserve your copy with your local comic shop today.

Red Sonja: The Ballad of the Red Goddess is easily one of the most beautiful and prestigious books we’ve ever had the ability to publish and we’ve been publishing Red Sonja since the very dawn of Dynamite,” said Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite Entertainment. “Roy Thomas’ story is incredible and Moroto & Casas’ artwork is unreal. This is the Red Sonja book everyone should have on their shelves.”

Red Sonja: The Ballad ...

08/01/18 @ 2:32 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment and unique media bundling site Groupees are proud to offer a curated selection of digital comics to fans of strong female characters of all ages. The Dynamite Women Build-a-Bundle is designed to fit any budget, granting enthusiasts the freedom to choose individual comics for a super-discounted rate, or collect all 86 digital comics for the low, low price of only $19.99, a savings of over 90%!

With seven tiers to choose from, ranging from free to $19.99 for Digital Comics! And for the fans who enjoy high end collectibles as well as digital comics, there are thresholds beginning at $39.99 and up to $299.99!

To purchase the individual issues in digital form, Dynamite and Groupees are offering a variety of series at a specially reduced price, so you can mix-and-match to meet your character preference. But remember - the best buy would be to nab the entire lot of digital Dynamite Women comics for the low rate of only $19.99. That's over 86 comics valued at over $200 - over 2,000 pages of female-fronted action -- at a fraction of the price!

The Groupees Dynamite Women Build-a-Bundle promotion can be found at: https://groupees.com/dynamite-women

FREE Tier: Includes nine comics!

Barbarella #1
Vampirella #1-#3
Read More Here

07/24/18 @ 6:34 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

San Diego Comic-Con may be over, but Dynamite Entertainment is continuing the fun by ending one mega sale...and starting another! Over 1,600 digital comics from Dynamite’s backlist are being offered at a steep discount through Comixology.

Dynamite Entertainment offers fan favorites and iconic characters including Bettie Page and Project Superpowers, The Shadow, Jim Butcher’s The Dresden Files, Garth Ennis' Battlefield, plus multimedia blockbusters Charmed, Battlestar Galactica, and Pathfinder!

A stunning 1,620 comics and graphic novels from Dynamite's extensive library of characters will be available at a steep discount through Comixology featuring some of the industry's best-selling and critically acclaimed creatives from Gail Simone to Warren Ellis, Corinna Bechko, Erica Schultz, Fred Van Lente, Mark Millar, Grant Morrison, Matt Wagner, Jim Zub, Greg Pak, Kurt Busiek and so many more!

“Comixology offers such a stellar reading experience for our books,” said Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite Entertainment. “For fans who are wanting to complete their collections or casual readers just checking out something new, that’s why we offer these sales. There’s something for everyone.”

This special Dynamite mega sale runs through July 30. There has never been a better time to fill all those holes in your digital comics collection, or catch up on a new series from comics' most "dynamic" publisher! Visit comixology.com today to browse hundreds of value-priced digital comics from Dynamite Entertainment!

07/24/18 @ 6:31 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite

Dynamite Entertainment and Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. are pleased to announce a partnershipwith Lynnvander Studios to create the next phase in Tarzan’s legendary history; a new board game starring Tarzan, Jane, and the rest of his friends and foes as an epic, playable adventure! Today, Dynamite Entertainment and Lynnvander Studios will offer this exciting game for pre-order on Kickstarter where gamers and Tarzan fans will get their first opportunity to see this thrilling game in action.

Tarzan is a fictional/literary character created by Edgar Rice Burroughs. Lord & Lady Greystoke were marooned on the coast of Africa. Alone and expecting their first child, they headed inland to the heart of darkest Africa. Lady Greystoke dies in childbirth and Lord Greystoke is soon killed by the Mangani Ape Tribe who adopt the Greystokes son and raise him as one of their own. Now grown into a man, Tarzan is a brave and cunning warrior, using his skills and knowledge of the island to protect the animals and himself from other humans who would seek to exploit the isolated land. First appearing in 1912 as a serialized magazine story, Tarzan was later published as a series of novels which was eventually adapted into nearly all forms of media including movies, television, and even comic books which are currently being published by Dynamite Entertainment under the name Lord of the Jungle and the Tarzan/Red Sonja crossover. TARZAN® and Edgar Rice Burroughs® are owned by Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc. and used by permission.

Tarzan is a co-operative, choose-your-own-adventure-style tactics board game where you play as Tarzan, Jane, Cecil, Lt D'Arnot, Chowombi, and more, in an attempt to get Jane to her destination safely. Many enemies are trying to stop you from achieving your goals and you have ...

07/17/18 @ 8:05 pm EST
Source: Dynamite | Categories: Dynamite


Dynamite Entertainment and Topps are ready to protect the world from those crazy green aliens once again as writer Kyle Starks (Rick and Morty, Rock Candy Mountain) and artist Chris Schweizer (The Creeps, Unbeatable Squirrel Girl) bring you the face melting experience of a lifetime with Mars Attacks! this October!

Mars Attacks! is coming back to comic stands and I’m thrilled to be a part of it,” said writer Kyle Starks. “I’ll be bringing my two-time Eisner nominated trademark humor and action to this totally awesome and classic franchise.”

In Mars Attacks! #1, Spencer hasn’t finished a dang thing in his life. So when he goes to visit his dad to see if maybe he can borrow some money, the last thing on his mind is global survival. Now Spencer and his father are on the run, trying to avoid being spaceray’d by a bunch of destruction happy Martians, heck-bent on zapping them dead!

“It gets even better. We’ve got award-winning cartoonist Chris Schweizer for art duties and he’s going to hit a home run,” added Starks. “Schweizer and Starks go together with Mars Attacks! as well as death rays and flying saucers. This is going to bonkers hilarious, bombastically over-the-top fun."

“I’ve been waiting to see Dynamite’s take on Mars Attacks! for over a year and I’m so excited with what the creative team has done,” said Nick Barrucci, Dynamite CEO & Publisher. “I’ve been a fan ever since the 1962 trading cards and our series really reflects the tone of the original.”

The debut issue of Mars Attacks! #1 delivers a wide selection of cover variants, providing fans and retailers a chance to collect the ...

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