06/17/16 @ 1:02 am EST
A Writer’s Commentary: David Avallone
talks Twilight Zone: The Shadow
#3, on sale now from Dynamite. Cover by Francesco Francavilla
, interiors by Dave Acosta
I knew this would be the hard one: nothing is less visual than watching a guy write a novel… but I wanted to see if I could meet that challenge.The cover.
I’m relatively new to comics, and this was the first time I asked if I could suggest a cover idea. I would never want to intrude on the artistry of the great Francavilla, but the concept for this one popped into my head and I really wanted to see what Francesco would do with it. Giant hands and giant props feel like a classic pulp cover trope from the thirties, and I love the way it came out.Page one.
Narration. One of my very favorite things about this book is the opportunity to write in Rod Serling’s “voice”. Like most geeks my age, I grew up hearing those Twilight Zone narrations again and again, and loving that vivid style. I hope I captured it here.Page two.
Eagle-eyed Twilight Zone fans might recognize Art’s boss from a classic episode. Hint: he’s the actor who appeared in the most TZ episodes.Pages two and three.
Dave Acosta is the best, as I will say to anyone, whether they ask me or not. In this sequence, the secretary bringing the martini is all him. I love touches like that: they bring the world to life.Pages four and five.
I knew “Art” would have to spend a lot of this issue talking to himself, so why not his “Shadow?” When I was developing this series, I was caught between two very different styles of storytelling. The Shadow has a lot of action and intrigue. Lots of gunplay and fistfights and cars racing down streets. On the other hand, there are a lot of Twilight Zone episodes mostly made up of two guys stuck in a room talking to one another. Serling (and Matheson and Beaumont) were able to make that kind of thing crackle with tension. I make no such claims for my own talent but I wanted to have some of that Twilight-Zone-claustrophobic-one-act-play feeling in this series as well.Page six.
One of the touchstones for this issue was David Cronenberg’s hallucinatory film version of NAKED LUNCH. Like Cronenberg, I have always found manual typewriters to be kind of fascinating things…Page seven.
…and maybe a little creepy.Pages eight.
Another touchstone for this issue is Chuck Jones’ classic “Duck Amuck” cartoon. Daffy runs around on a blank sheet of paper and has some serious issues with his creator. Hopefully this sequence is a little more chilling than hilarious. I think the rest of the book beautifully demonstrates Dave Acosta’s ability to draw anything I throw at him.Page nine.
My colorist, Omi Remalante, did a beautiful job creating a look here that could pass for a blank sheet of paper without just being a wash of white. Everyone rose to the challenge on this issue.Page ten and eleven.
Psychodrama! I’m a big fan of silent panels. I love Kent Allard watching his Id and Superego duke it out in front of him.Page twelve.
I’ve been doling out my own take on the Shadow’s origins in this series, and here I go against a lot of the prevailing trope previous versions of the Shadow. It’s such a cliché these days to have your white hero go to Tibet and learn mystic arts. Yawn. I have it on a good authority (Walter Gibson) that the Shadow spent a lot of time among an incredibly obscure Guatemalan culture called the Xinca (or Xinka.) Why not learn the mystic arts from them? Far less is known about the Xinca than is known about Tibetan Buddhism.Page thirteen.
The Xinca appear in four panels in this comic book. I don’t want to think about the hours I spent researching them to make sure these four panels had some kind of reality to them. Shout out to my Facebook friend Agathe Rigault whose education in pre-Columbian civilizations came to the rescue when I hit a wall. The illustrations here are based on the few photos I could find on the web of the Xinca. I like the poetic names of their gods, and I like that they laugh in Kent Allard’s face for his cornball pitch.Page fourteen.
I wasn’t thinking about it when I wrote this page, but Kent Allard here reminds me a little bit of blissed-out Don Draper in the last episode of Mad Men.Page fifteen-eighteen.
I was trying to think of a creepy action bit to end this sequence: something that would metaphorically dramatize the whole struggle. Since Kent is stuck on a piece of paper, the giant typewriter bars smacking down at him was a natural thought. As for the word they’re spelling out… and Kent getting tied down for the final blow… that came courtesy of Franz Kafka’s short story “In The Penal Colony”. It seemed apt to echo that here.Page seventeen/eighteen.
I didn’t want to do a story about the Shadow’s first novel without a cameo by Harry Vincent. Good old Harry.Page nineteen.
The first draft is often the story you tell your significant other, when they make the mistake of asking “what are you doing?” Note that there’s a one new word on Art’s sheet of paper.Page twenty.
And we’re back to the beginning, now. Dave found the propaganda poster in his research, and added the rat. And we end as we began, with my most sincere attempt to channel the voice of a true genius, a great and moral artist, now lost to us but forever remembered… in the Twilight Zone.
11/26/19 @ 4:09 pm EST
Dynamite announces a new original James Bond graphic novel for release in February, incorporating contributions from a cavalcade of writers and artists to celebrate the timelessness of the character and the countless talented creators who have brought him to comics.
James Bond in "Reflections of Death" is a 128 page hardcover of nonstop thrills and intrigue. Several Dynamite Bond veterans return for this tapestry, including Benjamin Percy (Wolverine, X-Force), Andy Diggle (Daredevil, Green Arrow) and Greg Pak (Star Wars, Agents of Atlas) and the writers of the December-launching new ongoing series, Vita Ayala (Morbius, Xena) & Danny Lore (Queen of Bad Dreams). Stars of both Dynamite and comics at large Gail Simone (Deadpool, Wonder Woman) and Mark Russell (Red Sonja, The Flintstones) join the team as well. Artists enlisted for the mission include Luca Casalanguida (Hammerhead, Kill Chain, The Body), Robert Carey (James Bond 007), Jordi Perez (Xena), Dean Kotz (Warlord of Mars Attacks), Eoin Marron (Killer Groove) and Kewber Baal (KISS). All wrapped up in another beautiful noir and pulp flavored cover by Fay Dalton (Casino Royale, Vampirella).
With a framing story Ayala and Lore, over 20 total creators will collaborate to contribute stories that both stand on their own and tie into an overarching narrative. The central figure through the anthology of case files is Moneypenny. She's been kidnapped. and the mystery of her captors and their demands will only be revealed when, or if, 007 is able to complete his missions. While Moneypenny herself may have some surprises up her sleeve.
"We're incredibly fortunate to work with so many talented creators, and of course they all want to write one of the most crucial characters in modern fiction!," said Nick Barrucci, Dynamite CEO and Publisher. "Just in time for the new ...
11/26/19 @ 4:07 pm EST
Vampirella's anniversary celebration continues with a hotly anticipated deluxe art book honoring her recent history and portrayals.
This breathtaking tome reproduces countless already and soon-to-be classic portrayals of the Daughter of Drakulon on beautiful oversized pages. Picking up right where ART OF VAMPIRELLA: THE DYNAMITE YEARS left off, this brand-new hardcover volume features hundreds of covers, including well over 40 from 2019's smash hit Vampirella #1. Plus covers from the critically acclaimed 2014 run by Nancy Collins, the Linsners' masterpiece Roses for the Dead, and much more from the Vampi archives.
Superstar artists included within these pages include Artgerm, J. Scott Campbell, Lucio Parrillo, Alex Ross, Jenny Frison, Terry Dodson, Joe Jusko, and many, many more.
"It’s always a pleasure to see so many talented artists, such as Fay Dalton, Jenny Frison and Ben Oliver come in with their contributions every month portraying our favorite vampiress," said Cathleen Heard, Dynamite Art Director. "Many of these pieces are so impressive that we know fans will appreciate them compiled and presented in different ways to truly celebrate this anniversary. Our production and design team always strives to put together books that reflect the prestige of our characters and properties."
Vampirella debuted 50 years ago in the first issue of her self-titled magazine. Originally put out through Warren Publishing as a horror, sci-fi and fantasy anthology alongside sister titles Creepy and Eerie. Intended as a campy hostess, the heroine built up by James Warren, Forrest J. Ackerman, Trina Robbins and Frank Frazetta became a quick fan-favorite in her own right. Especially once comics legend Archie Goodwin and a young Spanish artist named Jose "Pepe" Gonzalez got their chance on ...
11/26/19 @ 4:05 pm EST
Starting in February, Dynamite is proud to announce the Eisner-nominated Mark Russell is kicking off his second full year on the She-Devil with a Sword in the flagship Red Sonja, joined once more by the masterful Bob Q and the return of Jae Lee to Dynamite!
Following 12 issues and two tie-in one-shots, Red Sonja #13 starts with Sonja the Red in a an unfamiliar position. In the beginning of this epic, she was crowned Queen of Hyrkania, pitting her in battle against Dragan the Magnificent. As the two leaders pushed and pulled on the map, one must come out victorious. This glory is short-lived, as now in a time of relative peace and still on the throne of her conquered kingdom, Sonja must deal with the impossible part... ruling. With no food, infrastructure or plan, she must make some extremely difficult choices, compromises and alliances, lest her reign come to an anticlimactic end.
Mark Rusell details where the saga has been and where it's going, "The first year was about telling the story of Sonja leading her people against the world's most powerful emperor, as adapted into fantasy from the historical story of Queen Tomyris and Cyrus the Great. Being a huge fan of ancient history, it was an amazing opportunity to get to tell a longform and pretty freeform story adapted from the history books, which back then, were almost works of fantasy themselves."
"This next one is going to be different in that it's less about adapting stories from ancient history and more ...
11/27/19 @ 9:10 am EST
In collaboration with Dynamite, Christopher Priest is celebrating Black History Month and paying tribute to the contributions of creators of color on his Vampirella run.
As Christopher Priest's acclaimed run on Vampirella has continued on, the veteran writer and editor is constantly working closely with Dynamite brewing new ideas to engage the comic book community of fans, retailers and press. For February's VAMPIRELLA #8, Priest thought of a symbolic way to pay tribute to an underrecognized and underutilized portion of creators and fans.
“It is a significant and unique gesture on Dynamite’s part to work with me to acknowledge the contributions of African American artists in this industry with a set of covers exclusively developed by artists of color," said Priest. "Both my veteran buddies and inspiring boundary breakers creating their own unique expressions of our favorite Vampiri."
Priest and editor Matt Idelson carefully assembled a team comprised of Denys Cowan, Alitha Martinez, Mark Beachum and Afua Richardson to contribute covers inspired by a simple premise. They were asked to imagine creating the Daughter of Drakulon back in 1969 as if her appearance was inspired by African American women rather than the Bettie Page and Barbarella vein that James Warren, Forrest J. Ackerman, Frank Frazetta and Trina Robbins ended up tapping into. They are also joined by returning cosplayer Mai (Maidenhellxo).
11/22/19 @ 7:33 pm EST
Wow! Kickass Wastelanders like you helped this just-launched Fallout Kickstarter to be a smashing success. The campaign was funded within barely 3 hours, which means the Hidden Vault Collectors' Box will officially be brought into the world and delivered directly to the hardcore Fallout and trading card fans.
If you don't know what we're talking about right now... get caught up and pledge now by CLICKING HERE!
Trading cards, sketch cards, custom binders and the awesome Hidden Vault Collectors' Box can all be yours! Head over to Kickstarter to support this project!
11/21/19 @ 3:33 pm EST
February is just around the corner, and love is in the air! To celebrate the season of flirty fun, Dynamite is releasing a curated selection of themed variant covers by fan-favorite artists for fans to collect.
These special covers feature on Death to the Army of Darkness #1, Vampirella/Red Sonja #6, Red Sonja #13 and Dejah Thoris #3. Sebastián Píriz (Six Million Dollar Man) tackles the first, homaging a timeless classic with Ash taking on quite the handsy deadite bride. Ilustrator Lynne Yoshii (Gotham City Garage) has Red Sonja providing some platonic protection for her latest loved one. While Superstar Sanya Anwar (Assassin's Creed) pulls double duty with two separate picture-perfect portrayals of the Women of Dynamite, one of which checks off a bucket list item for her.
She added, "I've been a fan of Dejah since reading Edgar Rice Burroughs for the first time. Being able to work on such an iconic character is a real treat!"
"Ash is an iconic character, and the rest of the new crew are just too much fun to draw," said Píriz. "Even better, I had the opportunity to work over John Romita's layout. I love this job!"
And hey, Dynamite bets your crush would love some comic books as gifts too!
DEATH TO THE ARMY OF DARKNESS #1, VAMPIRELLA/RED SONJA #6, DEJAH THORIS #3 and RED SONJA #13 will all be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors’ December 2019 Previews catalog, the premier source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market, and slated for release in February 2020. Comic book fans are encouraged to preorder copies of the issue with their local comic ...
11/21/19 @ 3:30 pm EST
Dynamite announces two special versions of Warren Ellis' iconic James Bond comics for release in February.
Collecting all of Ellis' espionage epic together in one oversized hardcover volume is the James Bond: The Complete Warren Ellis Omnibus. Included inside are the entire 12 issues that kicked off Bond's epic return to comic books in 2015, by one of the greatest writers of the medium and instant star South African artist Jason Masters. In addition to the critically acclaimed VARGR and Eidolon story arcs, every single cover is included, from the likes of Jock, Francesco Francavilla, Dominic Reardon, Joe Jusko, Ben Oliver, Glenn Fabry, Dan Panosian, Robert Hack and more.
For fans who have never picked up a James Bond comic and want a taste test, or veterans who'd like to revisit that joyful feeling of reading the authentic Fleming-inspired spy tales for the first time, Dynamite is also releasing a Dynamite Dollar Edition of the original first issue. Advertising within the issue will direct fans who can't get enough to check out the omnibus volume and further Bond case files, such as the current series by writers Vita Ayala, Danny Lore and artist Eric Gapstur.
This globetrotting adventure takes Bond from his native Britain to Helsinki, Berlin, Los Angeles and further. Ostensibly tasked with breaking up a drug-trafficking operation, the entire scheme unravels with unexpected variables galore. Can Bond break through the political mist and accomplish his mission, let alone survive?
Warren Ellis, alongside his collaborators, is credited with nearly singlehandedly revolutionizing the mainstream American comic book through his influential and acclaimed creations of The Authority and Planetary at the turn of the century. Across comics, prose, video games ...
11/21/19 @ 3:14 pm EST
Ash Williams is back in a new series in February from Dynamite - but wait, there are more Ash Williams?!
The "Chosen One" has had enough of that nonsense, but gets way more than he bargained for when Ashley Joanna Williams suddenly splinters into multiple differing clones. And each is packing the same over the top personality as the original! Writer Ryan Parrott (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Batman: Gates of Gotham) has concocted this comedy-horror extravaganza alongside artist Jacob Edgar (Savage Tales: Red Sonja). Their groovy crew is completed with colorist Kike J. Díaz (Sherlock Frankenstein, Ether) and letterer Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou (Red Sonja, Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt) - who must have cloned himself to double as one of the best letterers and an Eisner-winning critic!
Picking up just barely after the legendary Army of Darkness film, the big mixup is of course due to some classic bad translation of the Necronomicon. Introducing the cast... Ash is joined by the personification of his feminine side with Ashley Williams, the erratic Lil' Ash, Dash aka Doggie Ash, the cynical and morose Skeleton Ash and Chainy - Ash's now sentient chainsaw!
Together they must travel through time to Ancient Egypt and prevent the Necronomicon from ever being written in the first place. Along the way, can Ash solve his split personality predicament - and how would the others feel about that? Could one of the party members be hiding something? Fans will just have to read to find out!
Writer Ryan Parrott is no stranger to "team books," as the architect of the critically acclaimed Power Rangers franchise in comics today. After spearheading the ongoing spinoff series alongside his mentor Kyle Higgins, he's leveled up to the flagship.
Parrott shared, "Ash is just such a ...
11/21/19 @ 10:35 am EST
War, war never changes. Dynamite Entertainment announces a Kickstarter extravaganza for the new Fallout® Collector’s Trading Cards series!
The campaign is live right now - CLICK HERE!
Last year, Dynamite partnered with Bethesda Softworks® to create and release the first-ever Fallout trading card series. Available across the globe in stores including Target, GameStop, GAME (UK), Amazon, Toynk Toys and comic book specialty stores, they flew off the shelves and sold out almost instantly at retail. This year, Dynamite celebrates the sequel series by offering an exclusive, limited-edition collectors box directly to the fans!
Backers on Kickstarter can get the Hidden Vault Collector's Box, stuffed with all the collectibles to prosper and barter within the post-apocalypse. Each of these custom packages, numbered and limited to 600, includes a complete base set of the sold-out Series 1 Fallout Trading Cards (144 total cards) saved for this special campaign, plus 5 foil packs of Series 2 (50 more cards), and 7 exclusive S.P.E.C.I.A.L. cards created only for this package. That's a massive haul of over 200 collectible trading cards.
And there's more... All Hidden Vault Collector's Boxes additionally include two rare items. Bethesda is allowing artists outside of their company to contribute official art to the Fallout franchise through a limited number of literally one-of-a-kind sketch cards, from only the most talented artists in the field! These sketch cards are exclusive to Kickstarter. Cream of the crop artists including Andy Bohn, Norvien Basio, Miranda Gainey, Rusty Gilligan, Alex Mines, Rich Molinelli, Barry Renshaw, April Reyna, Xinjix & more!
The Hidden Vault Collectors Box is the perfect way to start your Fallout collection, but fans will have the option to increase their loot with more foil packs and boxes from ...
11/15/19 @ 5:16 pm EST
Dynamite has just a few days left to go on its mega-gigantic Humble Bundle. Add it all up, and you can get almost 350 issues and 12,000 pages of comic books & more for under $20. That's a deal! Check out all the tiers and make sure to sneak in your purchase before it ends soon!
Don't miss the Dynamite 15th Anniversary Bundle
Your friends at Dynamite want to show you this sweet Army of Darkness story. It's written by Scott Duvall, who Ash Williams fans may remember from Army of Darkness / Bubba Ho-Tep.
The art is masterfully handled by Edu Menna and Jordan Michael Johnson, with colors and letters by Salvatore Aiala and Taylor Esposito. Fitting for a Humble Bundle stuffed full of great books, Ash is on a book tour. But he has bad experiences with a certain book...
Before or after you read the story, check out this interview with Scott about the story - CLICK!
And probably after you finish it, check out Scott's page-by-page commentary on the issue - CLICK!