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.
05/17/19 @ 1:31 pm EST
Dynamite is making a giant splash in July 2019 with a new Vampirella series by top tier creators like Christopher Priest, as well as reprints and collections of highly sought after recent and classic material, and lots of special items for fans. But in addition to celebrating the 50 years of Vampi, Dynamite looks to the future of Vampirella comics with a blank comic for aspiring creators!
Dynamite is offering the Vampirella Blank Comic Book. This standard length comic book sports sketch-quality blank interior pages and a cover with just logo treatment. Dynamite is embracing the extraordinary talents of their fanbase and the comics community to experiment and produce their own Vampi stories.
People can take on the project solo or collaborate with friends to write, draw, ink, color and letter a full length story. Or split up the pages for an anthology in the vein of the original magazine. Another challenge would be to follow the famous 24-hour comic challenge. An artist drawing in this book could be the next José González, Amanda Conner, Mike Mayhew or Ergün Gündüz, finding themselves professionally drawing the Daughter of Drakulon someday. Or writing, in the footsteps of Archie Goodwin, Kurt Busiek, Mark Millar or Christopher Priest.
05/17/19 @ 1:26 pm EST
Dynamite Entertainment announces its Editorial and Sales team will embark once more on a journey to the Diamond Retailer Summit and that special covers will be available to retailers.
Joseph Rybandt, Executive Editor and Patrick O'Connell, Sales Manager will be at the summit to present to and speak with retailers about all of Dynamite's exciting recent and upcoming releases and initiatives. Including discussion of the upcoming Vampirella #1 written by Christopher Priest, the crossover with Archie Comics and an upcoming series by Gail Simone!
At the Dynamite booth, participating retailers will be able to receive four limited edition covers for Red Sonja & Vampirella Meet Betty & Veronica. Upcoming Vampirella ongoing artist Ergün Gündüz illustrated a cover with the four fan-favorite heroines taking a selfie together. Dressed and virgin versions of the cover will be available. In addition to high-end premium $50 virgin cover editions of the Fay Dalton and Cat Staggs variants.
"We love our retail partners in the industry. The ones attending the Diamond Seminar are taking time out of being in their stores and investing their time and money to be at the show. Dynamite is honored to be able to present our upcoming publishing schedule and all the exciting projects we have for the rest of this year, going into 2020! We want to thank them for coming by in giving away multiple items to help them recoup some of their expenses," said Nick Barrucci, Dynamite CEO and Publisher.
05/16/19 @ 2:28 pm EST
Fwoosh! What sound effect does a boomerang make? Find out this August when Dynamite releases THE DEATH-DEFYING 'DEVIL #1 by Gail Simone and Walter Geovani! The Master of Courage returns!
The nearly 80-year-old legendary superhero returns in a miniseries from Eisner-nominated writer Gail Simone (Birds of Prey, Wonder Woman, Domino) and her longtime artistic collaborator Walter Geovani (Red Sonja, Clean Room). Colorist Adriano Augusto (Red Sonja/Tarzan, KISS: Blood & Stardust) and prolific letterer Simon Bowland (Red Sonja, The Boys) round out the cast.
In this yarn inspired by Rod Serling, Bronze Age horror/mystery anthologies, and modern street-level heroics, the 'Devil finds himself beaten and bloodied in the backyard of a ramshackle apartment building. The diverse cast of tenants take him in and across each issue they are explored in-depth. Each has their own unique problems, while a strange force also menaces the building as a whole. The 'Devil makes it his mission to solve all of these puzzles, even when he learns that one of his new neighbors is a traitor.
A whole legion of painterly artists are contributing covers to this blockbuster series. Riccardo Federici (Aquaman, Dark Nights Metal: Dark Knights Rising) leads the pack, Tyler Kirkham (Deathstroke, Green Lantern, Teen Titans) has some fun with a spray effect, Ben Oliver (American Carnage) turns in a playing card-inspired cover featuring the villain Deadly Dreaded Dragon, while fan-favorites Lucio Parillo (Vampirella, Red Sonja) and In-Hyuk Lee (Black Order, Spider-Geddon) strike iconic heroic poses. As a throwback for Project Superpowers fans, a special incentive "Carve Out" cover features Alex Ross's history-making depiction.
Read More Here
05/16/19 @ 1:53 pm EST
Tick! Tick! Tick! Tock! The Jose Gonzalez Vampirella statue Kickstarter celebrating the iconic heroine's 50th Anniversary ends tonight! You have just hours left to support the campaign or increase your pledge to get even more awesome rewards!
The campaign ends at 11 PM EST! Pledge Now!
Thanks to all who have pledged already and continued to unlock stretch goal after stretch goal! Last night tons of new backers joined in and now every statue box will include a promo trading card depicting how the original Gonzalez/Torres masterpiece has translated to the third dimension!
Don't forget all the amazing options for rewards beyond the central statue! Enamel pins, deluxe art books, graphic novels, the hardcover Vampirella archives! And any combination - message us on Kickstarter and we can arrange add-ons and special personalized reward packages!
05/14/19 @ 10:37 pm EST
We need to express a HUGE thanks to all the passionate Vampirella fans and backers who have supported this Kickstarter! Your continued support has floored us at Dynamite and we've continued to upgrade and expand the campaign for you! We've got a 3rd stretch goal to announce early today! Maybe the last? Never say never!
Once we pass the current - and so close! - stretch goal of $25,000, the new stretch goal will be set at $30,000. For unlocking this level, a special premium promo trading card will be included in every statue box! The card, celebrating Vampi's 50th year, will depict a final photographed statue on one side and the original Jose Gonzalez and Enrich Torres painting on the reverse. Pledge now and don't wait until the last second!
Help Unlock the 3rd (!) Stretch Goal! The campaign ends this Thursday, May 16th at 11 PM EST.
Support the 50th Anniversary Jose Gonzalez Vampirella statue Kickstarter to get your rewards early and with added value. Statue collectors are also guaranteed lower numbers in the production run. In addition to the previously unlocked stretch goals of a bonus digital Vampirella: Feary Tales graphic novel and the limited edition Gonzalez Vampi print.
To support the campaign, visit: Jose Gonzalez Vampirella Statue!!
05/14/19 @ 9:52 pm EST
There are just a couple days left on the 50th Anniversary Jose Gonzalez Vampirella statue Kickstarter! We have a few updates to share with backers and those still on the fence! Pledge now!
Check out these new photos of the statue! We want to get the final 3D piece as close to Gonzalez's original piece as possible and have been comparing and listening to feedback. With a few tweaks, this is what Vampi looks like right now! The final final version may differ with even more improvements!
05/14/19 @ 2:24 pm EST
We are blown away every day as we watch the Kickstarter campaign rise and rise! We got funded, then blew past the first stretch goal! Now we are sooo close to passing the second stretch goal and we have a way for you to help!
For a chance to win the J. Scott Campbell Women of Dynamite Vampi statue, share a post on social media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook) with your friends and followers using the hashtag #VampiStatueKS, tagging @DynamiteComics and sharing this link http://bit.ly/2JfyxJX to show everyone the current Jose Gonzalez statue Kickstarter! You can send out the message once a day until this Thursday at 10 PM EST.
Here's a suggested sample post: Check out the @DynamiteComics Jose Gonzalez Vampirella statue on @kickstarter right now!
Head to their page to see how to enter the #VampiStatueKS contest too!
More rules and details can be found on our website here.
Help make the final push to the stretch goal on Kickstarter now!
We're so close to passing the $25,000 stretch goal - pledge now! The current goal is for a limited edition 8.5" by 11" print of a gorgeous Jose Gonzalez Vampi piece. It is a color version of the frontispiece used in Vampirella #39 from 1975. Add this jaw dropping work of art to your collection!
To support the campaign, visit: Vampirella 50th Anniversary Statue by Jose Gonzalez!
05/10/19 @ 12:45 pm EST
We did it, first stretch goal unlocked! *Sound effect* All backers of the Jose Gonzalez Vampirella Kickstarter will now receive the digital graphic novel Vampirella: Feary Tales. Thanks to support from fans like you! Or you specifically! Thanks, you! Let's keep the fun rolling! It's time for another stretch goal! You ready?
At a not-so-far benchmark of $25,000, every pledge receiving physical items will also get a bonus Jose Gonzalez Vampirella print. This 8.5" by 11" Limited Edition Print on a high quality heavy stock paper is a full color masterpiece done as a recreation of his black and white frontispiece pinup for Vampirella #39. The classic pose captures Vampi's timeless beauty as well as her radiating confidence. Check it out below! Also see the original piece. More details on Pepe's legendary pinups and later Vampirella pieces can be found in the 250-page deluxe hardcover The Art of Jose Gonzalez,which is available in multiple tiers on the Kickstarter. Including the rare model photo used as reference for this print!
Check Out the Campaign to Help Unlock this Special Print! Go go go!
05/09/19 @ 12:58 pm EST
05/03/19 @ 6:01 pm EST
The Vampirella fanbase never fails to impress us at Dynamite! The Jose Gonzalez statue was funded in less than 24 hours! Dynamite thanks everyone who has supported the campaign and we have our first stretch goal to announce. There's still plenty of time to preorder your statue and other goodies.
Check Out the Statue & Other Rewards Now!
For the first stretch goal, once the campaign passes $21,000 all backers of the campaign will receive a digital copy of the Vampirella: Feary Tales graphic novel. This anthology title replicates the feel of the original Warren magazine in its heyday, with a bounty of Vampi tales in each issue. The series was created to celebrate the 45th anniversary of Vampirella, and now here we are 5 years later! Fan favorite horror and comics writer Nancy A. Collins leads the pack, as this miniseries serves as a perfect companion to her run on the 2014 ongoing series. Also contributing stories to Feary Tales are Gail Simone (Red Sonja, Wonder Woman), Joe R. Lansdale (Bubba Ho-Tep, Jonah Hex), Steve Bissette (Swamp Thing), Steve Niles (30 Days of Night), and Devin Grayson (Batman, Nightwing).
In other graphic novel greatness, the painstakingly restored and remastered deluxe hardcover Vampirella Archives are available in multiple reward tiers, with statues and separately. A starter set of the first 5 volumes includes all the prime era of Jose Gonzalez, such as his collaborations with the legendary writer/editor Archie Goodwin (Batman, Iron Man) and the introduction of most major supporting characters. Beyond the gorgeous Gonzalez Vampi within, also included are countless timeless tales from some of the greatest comic ...