The-Living-Blood

SHUT IN THEATER: Weekend Reading 35

It’s Saturday, and that means it’s time for Weekend Reading 35! For the thirty-fifth weekend in a row, The Beat team is huddled inside and avoiding COVID-19 (which is still spreading unmitigated in the United States as we head into winter – nothing ominous there).

Fortunately, we have a stack of books to occupy us as the world is inevitably forced to lock down once again. What are you going to be reading this autumn weekend? We hope our readers will stay safe and share their reading plans with us in the comment section!

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Weekend Reading 35: The Living Blood

AVERY KAPLAN: This weekend, I’ll be checking out Moonstruck Volume One: Magic to Brew by Grace Ellis, Shae Beagle, Caitlin Quirk, Clayton Cowles, and Laurenn McCubbin. Then, after seeing her work recommended in the afterword of the superb The Gilda Stories (which I read for 31 Weekend Readings Later), my prose reading plans include The Living Blood by Tananarive Due.

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Weekend Reading 35: Décroissance Sexuelle

PHILIPPE LEBLANC: This weekend, I’ll take time to read and really absorb Décroissance sexuelle, the new poetry and art book from Julie Delporte. It’s about trauma, coping and living with the festering wounds it causes. Her work is always insightful and poignant. 

Weekend Reading 35: The Mothman Prophecies

DEANNA DESTITO: I recently started reading The Mothman Prophecies and plan on getting a good chunk of the book done this weekend. Written by John Keel, it explores the legend of the Mothman and how the creature tends to appear right before a catastrophe. In this book, it’s the Silver Bridge collapse that killed 46 people in the ‘60s. As someone who loves myths and legends (and of course horror), I loved the creepiness of the 2002 movie based on Keel’s work. Finally, I’m getting around to the source material. 

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Weekend Reading 35: Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot

TAIMUR DAR: I recently randomly rewatched some episodes of the cartoon Pelswick. When I first watched the show when it aired on Nickelodeon nearly two decades ago, I was completely unaware of its creator, cartoonist John Callahan. Currently gripped learning more about his life and career by reading his memoir Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot

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Weekend Reading 35: Please Don’t Step on my JNCO Jeans

AJ FROST: It’s been weeks of agony, but my copy of Please Don’t Step on My JNCO Jeans by Noah Van Sciver finally came in from Fantagraphics! Hallelujah! The book is designed to resemble one of the budget-friendly cartoon compilations books that are so plentiful in used book stores (red page trim and all). 

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Weekend Reading 35: The Pull

GREGORY PAUL SILBER: I’m reading The Pull by writer Steve Orlando, artist Ricardo López Ortiz, colorist Triona Farrell, and letterer Thomas Mauer. A futuristic sci-fi story starring a protagonist with just “six days to live,” it looks like the kind of bombastic-yet-emotionally-charged adventure that’s right up my alley. Apparently I’m a sucker for genre fiction about dying heroes. Orlando is one of the most exciting writers to emerge in the past several years, and I loved López Ortiz’ work on the underrated Black Panther vs Deadpool miniseries written by Daniel Kibblesmith, so my expectations are high. Look out for my review later this week.

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The Beat team shares their reading plans for the penultimate weekend in November.

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Marvel sets filming date for BLACK PANTHER 2 with Shuri taking a ‘prominent role’

After everything that 2020 has put us through, it feels good to get some good news: Marvel Studios has planned for the production of Black Panther 2 to start in March 2021.

The shocking passing of Chadwick Boseman this August due to colon cancer left many stunned. Not only was Boseman beloved by fans and castmates alike, but he stood as a role model and hero for many. After some time and consideration, it seems that Director Ryan Coogler and Marvel Studios have come up with a plan.

Tenoch Huerta (Narcos: Mexico) has been tapped to play one of the antagonists, as reported by The Hollywood Reporter. Alongside Huerta is the familiar faces of Letitia WrightLupita Nyong’oWinston Duke, and Angela Bassett. Rumors are that Wright will be taking a more prominent role.

This feels fitting as Shuri took on the mantle of Black Panther during the events of “The Deadliest of the Species” arc in Black Panther Vol 5. Speculation will continue around the story of the sequel, although Marvel has not hinted as to where the narrative will lead, just that “it has indicated that it will not use CGI to include the late star in the film.”

After a full year without Marvel movies, it feels good to see that many of the most anticipated films are starting up production. Currently, Phase 4 has ambitiously slated four films for 2021. Black Widow directed by Cate Shortland due for release on May 7th, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings by Destin Daniel Cretton due for release on July 9th, Eternals directed by Chloé Zhao due for release on November 5th, and the Untitled Spider-Man 3 slated for 2021 directed by Jon Watts due for release on December 17th.

With a successful vaccine hopefully coming next year, these release dates and production dates will hold and the fans can jump right back into the MCU and Phase 4. This time not only with the movies but also with the accompanying Disney+ shows as well.

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After everything that 2020 has put us through, it feels good to get some good news: Marvel Studios has planned for the production of Black Panther 2 to start in March 2021. The shocking passing of Chadwick Boseman this August due to colon cancer left many stunned. Not only was Boseman beloved by fans and […]

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A seven-foot tall Jim Lee-inspired Batman statue is the monument Burbank deserves

(Updated 6:35 PM Eastern with photos of the statue.)

DC Entertainment and the Burbank Hospitality Association, also known as Visit Burbank, have teamed for a new attraction spotlighting one of the publisher’s most famous properties. A 7 1/2′ statue of Batman, based on artist and DC publisher Jim Lee‘s 2002 design for the character from the Batman: Hush storyline, has been revealed in downtown Burbank. The statue, sculpted digitally by Alejandro Pereira Ezcurra, was cast in bronze by Burbank’s American Fine Arts Foundry and Fabrication, and weighs 600 pounds.

The Lee design used for the new statue is similar to that used for an earlier Batman: Black & White statue based on Lee’s pre-New 52 Batman design:

DC Collectibles has produced numerous statues based on Jim Lee’s Batman artwork in the past, including one based on the artwork to the cover to the Batman #608 second printing:

The Burbank statue of the Dark Knight is the latest permanent real-world representation of a famous comic book superhero. The current 15′ statue of Superman that has stood in Metropolis, IL has been there since 1993, and a 13′ statue of Captain America was erected in Brooklyn, NY in 2016. A life-sized statue of Tintin and Snowy also stands in Brussels, Belgium, and has since 1976.

Check out the full release announcing the placement of the statue below. The new statue of Batman is on display in Burbank now.

BURBANK, CA (November 20, 2020) Today, the World’s Greatest Detective arrived in Burbank, California, in the form of a colossal Batman statue based on the critically acclaimed Batman: Hush character design by world-renowned artist, publisher, and chief creative officer of DC, Jim Lee.

Brought to life by Visit Burbank in partnership with DC, Lee’s celebrated design from his 2002 Batman run was reimagined in 3D form by digital sculptor, Alejandro Pereira Ezcurra, and expertly crafted in bronze by the skilled artisans at Burbank’s American Fine Arts Foundry and Fabrication. The final statue measures seven-and-a-half feet tall and weighs 600 pounds.

Batman first appeared in Detective Comics #27 on March 30, 1939, and has stood as a symbol of determination, bravery, and justice to generations of fans for over 80 years. He has influenced every area of modern entertainment, appearing in countless comic books, Saturday morning cartoons, multiple television series, video games, theme parks and experiences, toys, collectibles, and apparel and lifestyle products, as well as blockbuster animated and live-action films.  Batman continues to be one of the most popular superheroes ever created—and, now, he is being commemorated in statue form by the City of Burbank.

The newly installed Batman statue can be viewed in the AMC Walkway of Downtown Burbank. Visitors are strongly advised to practice social distancing and wear a face mask.

For the latest Batman news and information, follow @Batman on Instagram and Facebook and @DCBatman on Twitter.

To learn more about how Visit Burbank engages with residents, businesses, visitors and increases tourism in Burbank, visit https://www.visitburbank.com/.

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The statue of the Dark Knight that now stands in downtown Burbank is made of bronze and weighs 600 pounds.

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RAPTOR by DAVE MCKEAN to be published by Dark Horse

An original graphic novel by Dave McKeanRaptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel, will be published in July 2021 by Dark Horse Comics.

Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel
Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel

McKean’s resume includes work on The Sandman as well as Black Dog: The Dreams of Paul Nash. Even those somehow unfamiliar with his work in comics may recognize his art from the covers of albums by musicians like Alice Cooper, Tori Amos, and Toad the Wet Sprocket.

Raptor follows two storylines. In one, Arthur, an nineteenth century writer in Wales, mourns his late wife whilst dabbling in the supernatural in the hopes that he might commune with her again. In the other, Sokol wanders a feudal landscape hunting monsters for those who can afford to pay the cost for his bounties. Judging by the description released by Dark Horse, both stories will veer into liminal spaces that blur the line between death and life, lies and reality.

The 128-page graphic novel will be available in two versions. The trade paperback edition will have a suggested retail price of $29.99. There will also be an oversized hardcover edition of Raptor, which will feature a tip-in illustration signed by McKean and carry a suggested retail price of $99.99.

Raptor will be available at your local comic shop on July 7th, 2021, and at bookstores on July 20th, 2021, and you can read the official press release from Dark Horse below. Will you be undertaking a quest to pick up Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel next summer? Let The Beat know in the comment section. 

DAVE MCKEAN’S ‘RAPTOR’ TO BE PUBLISHED AT DARK HORSE

The Legendary Artist Brings His First Creator-Owned Character to Dark Horse Comics

MILWAUKIE, Ore. (November 19, 2020)From award-winning, critically acclaimed artist and writer Dave McKean (Black Dog, The Sandman) comes his first creator-owned character in a stunning visual tour-de-force graphic novel, Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel.

 

Raptor flickers between two worlds and two conflicted souls: Sokol wanders a feudal fantastical landscape hunting monsters for those that can pay, and Arthur, a writer of supernatural tales in 19th Century Wales, mourning the passing of his young wife and dabbling in the supernatural in the vain hope of seeing her again. They both exist in the twilight between truth and lies, life and death, reality and the imagination.

 

Also available is a deluxe, oversized hardcover limited edition of Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel, with an exclusive signed tip-in illustration that is a perfect addition to any fan’s Dave McKean collection.

Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel and Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel Limited Edition will be in comic shops on July 7, 2021 and in bookstores on July 20, 2021. They are available for pre-order on AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE, and AT YOUR LOCAL COMIC SHOP and bookstoreRaptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel is a 128-page trade paperback that will retail for $29.99. The oversized, hardcover Raptor: A Sokol Graphic Novel Limited Edition will retail for $99.99.

 

Praise for Dave McKean’s Cages:

 

“One of the most important works of comic art in the last decade.”–The Comics Journal

 

“It is compulsively readable, with a lyrical tone that moves the reader through the rougher, more elusive passages as it strives at the very edge of the form’s limitation.”–Comic Foundry Magazine

“The finest comic being created today. Get it and see what heights narrative graphic art can achieve.”–The Fine Print

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The original graphic novel is about McKean’s first creator-owned character.

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BLACK LIGHTNING Season 4 will be the last for the CW series

While the last seasons of the Arrowverse shows on The CW were forced to end abruptly in the middle of storylines due to reality of COVID halting production. In contrast to the other shows, Black Lightning Season 3 wasn’t affected since filming was completed back in January. With the Arrowverse shows set to return in 2021, production like the rest of the entertainment industry has resumed under strict health guidelines. Unfortunately, per Variety it appears Black Lightning Season 4 will be the final season for the titular hero.

Series developer and executive producer Salim Akil said in a statement:

“When we first started the ‘Black Lighting’ journey, I knew that Jefferson Pierce and his family of powerful Black Women would be a unique addition to the super hero genre. The love that Blerds and all comic book fans around the globe have shown this series over the past three seasons proved what we imagined, Black People Want To See Themselves in all their complexities.”

Unsurprisingly Tony Isabella who created the character with Trevor von Eeden, was upset to hear the news

Black Lightning isn’t the only Arrowverse show coming to an end in 2021. Just a few months ago, it was announced that the sixth season of Supergirl would be its last. Given the upcoming Superman and Lois spin-off series and Stargirl moving from the DC Universe streaming platform to The CW for its second season, it’s not as if The CW will be lacking DC Comics shows anytime soon. However, since Black Lightning played by Cress Williams was not only incorporated into the same universe of the rest of The CW Arrowverse heroes after the Crisis on Infinite Earths crossover event but was also a charter member of the Justice League that formed, Black Lightning’s absence will definitely be felt.

With any luck, if the pilot for the Black Lightning spin-off centered on the character Painkiller gets picked up for a full season, it won’t be the last we’ve seen of the city of Freeland.

Courtesy of CW

The fourth and final season of Black Lightning is set to premiere on The CW on February 8, 2021.

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The series returns in February

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death tally

Comics Crowdfunding Round-Up: THE DEATH TALLY, GLAMORELLA’S DAUGHTER, and 3 more campaigns we love

Welcome to The Beat’s crowdfunding round-up: a collection of some of our favorite campaigns from the week including one-shots, on-goings, anthologies and everything in-between! This week, we’re checking out the debut of a new grim reaper in Death Tally, exploring the relationship between superheroes and their kids with Glamorella’s Daughter and Like Father, Like Daughter, and more.

Let’s get started!


The Death Tally #1

death tally

Creators: Silver Stevenson (writer/creator), Gab Serra (artist), Maria Santaolalla (colorist), Lettersquids (letterer), Katherine Fleming (editor)
Goal: $5,000
End date: December 2, 2020
Goodies: Grab a digital copy for $5, a physical copy for $15, or pledge more for variants, director’s cuts and more.

She accidentally killed the Grim Reaper… Now she must replace it. 

In The Death Tally, the world is dying. Growing up during this time sucks – and that’s exactly what nineteen-year-old Ahva is about to find out. After she accidentally kills the grim reaper herself, she’s forced to take her place and deal with the complexities leading up to the demise of all humanity. Check out a preview for this 24-page, full-color debut on the campaign page, and expect it in your mailbox next April.

Become a backer here.

Glamorella’s Daughter #1

glamorella's daughter

Creators: Jerry Bennett (illustrator), Brandy Williams (colorist), Charles J. Martin (writer, letterer)
Goal: $3,000
End date: December 12, 2020
Goodies: A PDF is $5, a print version is $6, and higher tiers include additional copies, and more Literati Press comics.

An inquisitive young girl and her glamorous superhero mother must overcome their differences to save Earth.

Glamorella is many things: superhero, thrill-seeker, defender of Earth – and mom, if you hadn’t guessed from the title! Her daughter, Comet, is an inquisitive young girl with autism and, in many ways, the antithesis to her mother. While Glamorella loves beating up baddies, Comet would rather chill and read a comic or play some games with friends. From Literati Press, this middle grade graphic novel series explores the relationship between parents and their kids. It’ll be available as soon as January.

Become a backer here.

Like Father, Like Daughter #1-7: A Superhero Drama

like father, like daughter

Creators: Kat Calamia (writer), Wayne A. Brown (artist), Lisa Moore (colorist), Brant Fowler (letterer)
Goal: $5,000
End date: December 9, 2020
Goodies: Grab a digital copy for $5, get a physical version for $10, or pledge more for variants, indie comic bundles, and more.

A high school girl, Casey Ryder, inherits the very powers that made her superhero father leave their family.

Like Father, Like Daughter returns with the penultimate issue of its first arc. The series follows the daughter of the world’s only superhero, Invulnerable, as she discovers she has superpowers of her own, wrestles with the responsibility of power, and what it means to inherit the abilities of her estranged father. Check out the campaign page for a preview, as well as a slew of variants.

Become a backer here.

Deep Theory #1: Ardipithecus

deep theory

Creators: Zach Young (writer), Vish Desai (writer), Wes St. Claire (artist), Toben Racicot (letterer), Andres Juarez (graphic designer)
Goal: $7,000
End date: December 16, 2020
Goodies: The PDF is $10, a physical version is $15, and higher tiers include holographic stickers, pins, and more.

A tale among tales about the origins of humanity. 

5 million years ago, an ape named Consho met an extraterrestrial life-form named Sykra, and they became close, almost in a prehistoric, sci-fi Beauty in the Beast way – but with a Black Mirror twist. In a nutshell, that’s the entirety of the Deep Theory anthology, of which Ardipithecus as the first. Each issue will tell a story of its own in 32 pages or so, all centered around a primary theme, and based on real life phenomena.

Become a backer here.

OFFWORLDER Issue 1 by Mike Baron & Jordi Armengol

offworlder

Creators: Mike Baron (writer), Jordi Armengol (artist), Ben Henderson (creator)
Goal: $3,000
End date: December 12, 2020
Goodies: Grab a digital copy for $5, go physical for $8, or pledge more for variants, bookmarks, stickers, and more. 

What are you willing to sacrifice for all of humanity?

Vikings meet sci-fi in this debut new series from the family-run publisher, Fanatic Comics. In the style of XO Manowar, this series kicks off centuries in the past, as Vikings roamed the seas – until an alien arrived and changed everything. Now, it’s up to Henry Gunn to decide whether to become something posthuman, and what he’ll sacrifice to save the world. It’s totally finished and ready to go – and these first 25 pages can be yours to read this coming February.

Become a backer here.


And don’t forget to check out last week’s projects:

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Plus, LIKE FATHER, LIKE DAUGHTER continues.

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Kyle Higgins & Marcelo Costa’s RADIANT BLACK coming in February from Image

A new superhero is set to rise next year. Radiant Black, a new ongoing series from Kyle HigginsMarcelo Costa, Becca Carey, and Michael Busuttil, will debut from Image Comics in February. The series, described as “Power Rangers meets Invincible” by the publisher, follows a young millennial who is granted cosmic powers.

Here’s how Image describes Radiant Black:

Radiant Black #1 introduces Nathan Burnett who has just turned thirty. Things aren’t great: He’s working (and failing) at two jobs, his credit card debt is piling up, and his only move… is moving back home with his parents.

But when Nathan discovers and unlocks the ethereal, cosmic RADIANT, he’s given the power to radically change his fortunes!

There’s just one problem: The powers don’t belong to him. And the COSMIC BEINGS who created them want them back… by any means necessary.

Radiant Black marks the return to Image for both Higgins and Costa. The former previously wrote the eleven-issue series C.O.W.L. for the publisher with artist Rod Reis, while Costa worked on Self/Made with writer Mat Groom and fellow artist Eduardo Ferigato.

In a statement announcing the series, Higgins described Radiant Black as his tribute to his favorite superhero comics:

“This is the comic book I’ve been waiting my whole life to make—being able to build this with Marcelo Costa, Becca Carey and Michael Busuttil is a dream come true,” said Higgins. “Radiant Black is both a love letter to the super hero stories I love as well as a statement on what I think super heroes can be for a whole new generation.”

Along with the announcement, Image has released a set of preview pages for the first issue, which feature the series’ lead character, Nathan, encountering the Radiant after a night out with a friend.

As someone who grew up with Kyle Rayner as his Green Lantern, this series sounds right up my alley, and Costa’s artwork looks fantastic. You can check out the preview, along with the full text of the announcement and a set of covers by Costa, Michael Cho, Ferigato & Costa, and David FinchJimmy Reyes, & Costa, below. Look for Radiant Black to arrive in stores in February 2021.

PORTLAND, Ore. 11/20/2020 — Bestselling writer Kyle Higgins (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Ultraman, C.O.W.L.) and superstar artist Marcelo Costa team up for Radiant Black. This all new, ongoing superhero series is set to launch from Image Comics in February 2021.

“This is the comic book I’ve been waiting my whole life to make—being able to build this with Marcelo Costa, Becca Carey and Michael Busuttil is a dream come true,” said Higgins. “Radiant Black is both a love letter to the super hero stories I love as well as a statement on what I think super heroes can be for a whole new generation.”

Radiant Black #1 introduces Nathan Burnett who has just turned thirty. Things aren’t great: He’s working (and failing) at two jobs, his credit card debt is piling up, and his only move… is moving back home with his parents.

But when Nathan discovers and unlocks the ethereal, cosmic RADIANT, he’s given the power to radically change his fortunes!

There’s just one problem: The powers don’t belong to him. And the COSMIC BEINGS who created them want them back… by any means necessary.

In an exclusive scoop on the announcement of the series by io9, Costa added: “Radiant Black has two things that I love—superheroes and Sentai. When Kyle told me he wanted to mix these two worlds, it was immediately interesting to me. I knew we had the opportunity to create something very special here, especially because of the characters and the timely challenges we’re building for them.”

Eric Stephenson, Publisher & Chief Creative Officer at Image Comics said also: “It’s been a few years since Kyle first pitched the idea of a new superhero series, but from the moment he mentioned it, I was in. Kyle’s superhero work speaks for itself—especially his epic run on Power Rangers and the hugely successful ‘Shattered Grid’ event—so the idea of Kyle taking the skills he’d honed on work-for-hire superheroes and developing something of his own just seemed right to me. We’ve spent a lot of time talking superheroes over the last couple years, and it’s been incredible to watch this all come together!”

Radiant Black #1 will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, February 10:

  • Cover A by Michael Cho – DEC200009
  • Cover B by Eduardo Ferigato & Costa – DEC200010
  • Cover C Blank cover – DEC200011
  • Cover D (1:10 incentive) by Costa – DEC200012
  • Cover E (1:25 incentive) by David Finch, Jimmy Reyes & Costa – DEC200013

Radiant Black #1 will also be available for purchase across many digital platforms, including Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, comiXology, and Google Play.

For more info and updates, visit http://radiant.black.

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The series, about a millennial who is granted cosmic powers, is described as POWER RANGERS meets INVINCIBLE.

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EXCLUSIVE PREVIEW: Ren learns Sabrina’s supernatural secret in SABRINA: SOMETHING WICKED #4

Kelly ThompsonVeronica Fish, and Andy Fish‘s pair of Sabrina the Teenage Witch miniseries have walked a fine line. More adult than the classic-style stories featuring the character, but not nearly as dark as the Archie Horror Chilling Adventures of Sabrina series, the creative team’s initial Sabrina miniseries was an exciting introduction to the character and her world as she faced off against a magic-wielding professor with a grudge against her family. Now the sequel series, Sabrina: Something Wicked, has found Sabrina and the residents of Greendale faced with something even more sinister: a supernatural serial killer.

Check out the full five-page preview for Sabrina: Something Wicked #4 below. The issue is due to arrive in stores next Wednesday, November 25th.

Written by Kelly Thompson
Illustrated by Veronica Fish & Andy Fish
Lettered by Jack Morelli

Covers by Veronica FishSweeney Boo, and Richard Ortiz

Sabrina Spellman has always had her aunts to guide her, but with nobody to trust, and time running out, she’ll have to see what she’s made of all on her own if she’s to save her friends, and Greendale itself from the clutches of a magic-based serial killer. But is it already too late? Has Sabrina already fallen into the killer’s trap herself?!

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There’s a magical serial killer on the loose in Greendale! This is no time for smooching!

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Mandalorian S2E3

Recap: THE MANDALORIAN S2E4 — “Chapter 12: The Siege”

Blue macarons for everyone! In an episode assumed to be somewhat of a filler, The Mandalorian S2E4 “The Siege” turned out to be a whole lot more! Mando returns back to Nevarro this episode, reuniting with his old friends Greef Karga (Carl Weathers, also the director of the episode!) and Cara Dune (Gina Carano). Before diving into this episode, I would like to acknowledge the current controversy surrounding Gina Carano and the statement we made in response to this.

“Chapter 12: The Siege”, much like “The Heiress“, picks up right after its previous episode. Mando is putzing along in the Razor Crest, now with the Child as his little junior mechanic. I know I’ve been saying for weeks that Mando is a bad dad, now I’m realizing Mando just might be a typical dad? That wiring scene hit a little too close to home for me, mild electrocution and all. Put that with the fact that this man seems to only be able to feed the kid soup and this is seeming more and more like a typical bachelor dad life. I do not take back my criticism but it was improperly labeled.

Since taking back Nevarro, Magistrate Greef Karga and Marshal Cara Dune have really made an attempt at cleaning the place up. We are reintroduced to Cara in a sequence of her fighting a group of Aqualish scavengers who name her as the Marshal. Making quick work of the scavengers, she returns back to see Mando’s arrival. Sputtering and groaning with a landing ramp that barely works, the Crest lands and Mando greets his friends again. Okay, Greef. Two things: One, your reaction to the Child: same. Two, you have to get better people if one of your “best people” is also an Empire spy! Come on, Greef.

Mandalorian S2E3
Was it the blue wire or the red wire? Or both?
Credit: Disney+

Nevarro is a changed place since Mando last left it. The cantina, once shot to hell by Gideon’s troops, is now a quaint little school for the young children complete with a female protocol droid teacher. Leaving the Child to get a navigational lesson (major trade routes, regions of space, etc.) the group leaves to go talk business. The Child is obviously immediately the center of attention for the kids and we’re treated to another show of the Force, this time to get a pack of blue cookies from a fellow classmate’s desk. The fact that Baby Yoda’s main reasons for using the Force this season has been because of food speaks to me on a fundamental level.

And, look who has also made a return! Mythrol (Horatio Sanz)! From the pilot episode! He promptly expels something when he sees the bounty hunter who last encased him in carbonite. Since his recapture, he’s been working off his 350 years of debt to Greef. Anyway, Greef and Cara need Mando’s help with an old Imperial base nearby. The source of Moff Gideon’s troops, the base is still being manned despite Moff Gideon being assumed dead. While Greef and Cara think the base is full of weapons (which it may be), its actual purpose is far more nefarious.

The trio heads off with Mythrol driving them in his speeder. A+ to Mythrol for getting 130 years knocked off his debt in this single, deadly mission. While trying to get in through the front door, Mando spots a trooper at the shuttle bay and realizes that this base isn’t manned by the skeleton crew they thought it was. On their way to the heat shaft, more and more stormtroopers are spotted by the group. With the coolant lines drained, the reactor becomes unstable and the group has about ten minutes to clear the base before it completely explodes.

Mandalorian S2E3
Credit: Disney+

On their way out of the base, they come across two officers purging the drives and realize what is actually going on at this base: it is a lab. Liquid tanks full of mutated specimens float on display, some of them looking suspiciously like Snoke. Mythrol is able to access a message from Dr. Pershing (Omid Abtahi) on the experiments:

“…replicated the results of the subsequent trials, which also resulted in catastrophic failure. There were promising effects for an entire fortnight, but then, sadly, the body rejected the blood. I highly doubt we’ll find a donor with a higher M-count, though. I recommend that we suspend all experimentation. I fear that the volunteer will meet the same regrettable fate if we proceed with the transfusion. Unfortunately, we have exhausted our initial supply of blood. The Child is small, and I was only able to harvest a limited amount without killing him. If these experiments are to continue as expected, we would again require access to the donor. I will not disappoint you again, Moff Gideon.”

Wow, lots to take in from this. Not only is Moff Gideon intent on extracting midichlorians from the Child, but he intends to inject it into a living subject. Previous attempts have failed, presumably, the subjects in the tank are the results of failed experimentation. Does Gideon want the blood for himself? Is he trying to wield the Force in order to strengthen his power? Is it related to Snoke and Palpatine and the First Order? Will the introduction of Ahsoka present Gideon with more M-saturated blood for these experiments?

Mandalorian S2E3
Credit: Disney+

There’s no time for questions, though. Gideon is alive and that means Baby Yoda is in danger. Mando books it back to Nevarro, splitting off from the group to jetpack back. This leaves Greef, Cara, and Mythrol to fight their way off the base, forcing them to take the Trexler Marauder on their way out. RIP to Mythrol’s speeder. The chase that ensues with the Marauder, the speeders, and the TIE fighters is great fun and it definitely looks like Carl Weathers is having a ball manning the guns. The TIE’s are hot on their tails, even though Greef manages to take out one of them, the guns are destroyed. Thankfully Mando and his newly fixed Crest come in for backup with the Child sitting in the cockpit with him. Question: It feels like it’s been maybe four or five hours since Mando landed, how the hell did those mechanics fix up the Crest so quickly?

The aerial dogfight is awesome, complete with spins and Baby Yoda with his hands up in the air munching on blue macarons. But, too many cookies + motion sickness = a bad time and poor Baby Yoda gets a little sick. We’ve all been there, my guy. Happy the ship is fixed and Nevarro is safe, Mando sets off on his way.

Not long afterward, we are reunited with Captain Carson Teva (Paul Sun-Hyung Lee) from “The Passenger“. He is inquiring about the Crest, but Greef doesn’t budge on intel. It’s interesting to see how the Outer Rim and our heroes view the New Republic, less heroic and more bureaucratic. Even Teva, a loyal soldier to the New Republic, knows that there is a disparity between those who live in the Core worlds and those in the Outer Rim. He suspects something is afoot and has been connecting the dots. He spots Cara outside and tries to recruit her to the New Republic. As a drop soldier and Alderaan native, she has a good reason to join up with the New Republic. Perhaps Cara calls in New Republic support in the final fight against Moff Gideon?

Mandalorian S2E3
Credit: Disney+

Somewhere in space on an Arquitens-class command cruiser, Moff Gideon is informed that one of the mechanics has planted a tracking beacon on the Razor Crest. Pleased with this knowledge and the fact that the Child is still with Mando, Gideon proclaims that they will be ready for him and looks on at a new set of troopers. Judging from the single frame, the troopers look similar to the Dark Troopers from Legends canon, potentially like the Phase II Dark Troopers. While it could be an homage, what is for sure is that these are not your typical stormtroopers and will come in handy in a fight against Mandalorians and even Jedi.

Next week’s episode will be directed by Dave Filoni and therefore has been predicted as the episode where we will officially meet Ahsoka Tano for the first time in live-action. Will Gideon be there to meet them? Will Ahsoka take the Child off Mando’s hands? Will she join him instead? What will Baby Yoda eat next?!

The Mandalorian streams new episodes every Friday on Disney+.

The post Recap: THE MANDALORIAN S2E4 — “Chapter 12: The Siege” appeared first on The Beat.

Blue macarons for everyone! In an episode assumed to be somewhat of a filler, The Mandalorian S2E4 “The Siege” turned out to be a whole lot more! Mando returns back to Nevarro this episode, reuniting with his old friends Greef Karga (Carl Weathers, also the director of the episode!) and Cara Dune (Gina Carano). Before diving into […]

The post Recap: THE MANDALORIAN S2E4 — “Chapter 12: The Siege” appeared first on The Beat.

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A new BLACK HAMMER series, YOUNG HELLBOY, and more in the Dark Horse Comics February 2021 Solicitations

Dark Horse Comics has released their full solicitations information for products scheduled to ship in February 2021. Here are some of the highlights:

  • A new eight-issue Black Hammer anthology series, Black Hammer: Visions, will feature one-shot stories starring the heroes of Spiral City by all-star creators. The first issue is written by comedian Patton Oswalt, with art by Dean KotzJason Wordie.
  • Matt Kindt, Tyler Jenkins, and Hilary Jenkins, the team behind Grass Kings, re-team for a new horror crime series, Fear Case
  • Mike Mignola returns to the world of his most famous creation to explore the adventures of Hellboy when he was even more of a boy in Young Hellboy: The Hidden Land, co-written by Tom Sniegoski and illustrated by Craig Rousseau
  • Dark Horse’s partnership with Comixology Originals continues with a print collection of the digital series Youth by Curt PiresAlex Diotto, and Dee Cunniffe
  • Matt Lesniewski‘s new sci-fi horror original graphic novel, Static
  • The EC Archives series continues with a collection of the classic Shock Illustrated, featuring every issue of the series, including the previously lost fourth issue

All this and much more ahead in the full Dark Horse Comics solicitations for February 2021. Check out the text and images below.

(Click images to enlarge)

Assassin’s Creed Valhalla: Song of Glory HC

Cavan Scott (W), Martin Tunica (A), Michael Atiyeh (C), and Karl Kopinski (Cover)
On sale Apr 21
FC, 72 pages
$17.99
HC, 7” x 10”
Fearless Vikings confront their destiny in this glory-seeking prequel to Ubisoft’s next hit video game, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. Norway. Mid-9th Century CE. Eivor, a Viking warrior, observes a village raided by a neighboring kingdom. Bloodshed and mayhem erupt as she seizes the attack in her own favor—but will her victory be a blessing or a curse? Elsewhere in the east, another Viking searches for a different kind of prize, one of crucible steel . . .

Autobiographix HC

Various (W/A)
On sale Apr 14
b&w, 104 pages
$24.99
HC, 7” x 10”
A premium collection demonstrating the effectiveness of the comics medium for telling the most personal of stories—the autobiography. Showcasing some of the first published autobiographical stories from living-legend artists, mainstream greats, and young “indie” up-and-comers!

Featuring stories by Will Eisner, William Stout, Gabriel Bá and Fábio Moon, Stan Sakai, Sergio Aragonés, and many more of comics’ top talent!

Avatar: The Next Shadow #2 (of 4)

Jeremy Barlow (W), Josh Hood (A), Wes Dzioba (C), and Guilherme Balbi (Cover)
On sale Feb 3
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
With grievances of the past compounding and the Omatikaya refuge in unrest, an uprising begins! A member of the tribe challenges Jake’s claim to leadership—invoking a trial by combat!

Bandette Volume 3: The House of the Green Mask TP

Paul Tobin (W) and Colleen Coover (A/Cover)
On sale Apr 28
FC, 136 pages
$14.99
TP, 6” x 9”
The greatest thief in all the lands, uncovers the greatest of all mysteries: a clue to the location of the legendary House of the Green Mask! But the sinister Voice has set his sights on the same treasure and sent a deadly assassin after the same secrets! Worse, he’s stolen the one thing dearest to Bandette’s heart. Now, she’s after revenge! (And also chocolate.)

Barbalien: Red Planet #4 (of 5)

Tate Brombal (W), Jeff Lemire (W), Gabriel Hernández Walta (A/Cover), Jordie Bellaire (C), and Naomi Franquiz (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 17
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
Shapeshifting hero Barbalien has found happiness in the company of a young gay activist, but discrimination, his own split identity as a cop and vigilante, and the continued rampage of the martian bounty hunter Boa Boaz all threaten to unravel his life.

Patton Oswalt!

Black Hammer: Visions #1 (of 8)

Patton Oswalt (W), Dean Kotz (A/Cover), Jason Wordie (C), Evan Dorkin w/Sarah Dyer (Variant Cover), and Gilbert Hernandez w/Dave Stewart (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 10
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Ongoing
An exciting reimagination of the Eisner Award–winning Black Hammer series told by guest writers and artists such as Patton Oswalt, Geoff Johns, Mariko Tamaki, Chip Zdarsky, Kelly Thompson, and more of comic’s top talents!

Patton Oswalt joins artists Dean Kotz and Jason Wordie to explore the life of youthful super heroine Golden Gail on the Black Hammer Farm before the beginning of Black Hammer #1, and her struggle to maintain sanity as a middle-aged woman trapped in the unchanging body of a superpowered grade-schooler.
• Written by Patton Oswalt and drawn by Dean Kotz with colors by Jason Wordie!

Crimson Flower #2 (of 4)

Matt Kindt (W), Matt Lesniewski (A/Cover), Bill Crabtree (C), and Patric Reynolds (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 24
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
On the trail of her father’s killer, a young woman begins to blur the line between reality and fantasy as the folk tales from her childhood become more real than the world around her—and as she makes it one step further toward avenging her father, the line between justice and vengeance becomes equally fuzzy.

“Matt Kindt has long proven himself to be one of the most inventive and cerebral comic makers alive today.”–IGN

Cyberpunk 2077: Takemura Figure

On sale May 12
Approximately 9” tall on the samurai base
$49.99
Dark Horse and CD PROJEKT RED partner once again for the latest addition to our figure line for the highly anticipated game of Cyberpunk 2077. Takemura is one of the most important characters featured in Night City. Ready for action, his fearless style shines through as he draws his gun, prepared for a fight.

Disney Princess: Beyond the Extraordinary TP

Amy Mebberson (W/A/Cover) and various (W)
On sale Apr 7
FC, 104 pages
$10.99
TP, 6” x 9”
Short comics stories filled with fun and cheer in the different lives of all the Disney Princesses! Come along as they navigate a variety of situations to bring you fun, laughter, and delight. Includes a few never-before-published stories!
• Fun and funny stories for all ages!

The EC Archives: Shock Illustrated HC

Daniel Keyes (W), Robert Bernstein (W), Al Feldstein (W), Jack Kamen (A), George Evans (A), Frank Frazetta (A), Graham Ingels (A), and more
On sale Apr 7
FC, 240 pages
$49.99
HC, 8 3/16″ x 10 15/16″
Enjoy the complete run of Shock Illustrated, an innovative “Picto-Fiction” magazine containing illustrated prose stories of switch parties, thrill killers, and more of society’s dark underbelly—written and illustrated by Daniel Keyes (Flowers for Algernon), Jack Kamen, Reed Crandall, Graham Ingels, and more! This archive volume contains Shock Illustrated issues #1-#4.

Features the lost fourth issue, with pencils from Frank Frazetta!

Matt Kindt! Tyler Jenkins!

Fear Case #1 (of 4)

Matt Kindt (W), Tyler Jenkins (A/Cover), Hilary Jenkins (C), Duncan Fegredo (Variant Cover), and Francesco Francavilla (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 3
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
A new, horrific detective series by Matt Kindt (Ether, Mind MGMT) and Tyler Jenkins (Grass Kings)!

A no-nonsense Secret Service agent and his new-age partner investigate a mysterious box known as the “Fear Case,” which has appeared throughout history at sites of disaster and tragedy. Whoever comes into possession of this case must pass it on within three days or face deadly consequences. The agents must track down this Fear Case while staying one step ahead of a psychotic cult and the otherwordly forces behind the Case’s existence.

Gantz Omnibus Volume 6 TP

Hiroya Oku (W/A/Cover)
On sale Apr 28
b&w, 680 pages
$24.99
TP, 5 1/8” x 7 1/4″
Once a fearful conscript into the team of Gantz warriors, Kei Kurono is born-again hard in the invisible war against an endless stream of bizarre alien invaders. But the off-world intruders are now taking human form, and even a friend may be a foe!

Norse Mythology #5

Neil Gaiman (W), P. Craig Russell (W/A/Cover), David Rubín (A/C), Jill Thompson (A/C), and David Mack (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 10
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Ongoing
Loki’s strange children are discovered by the gods and forced into their dismal fates in a grand story of betrayal and destiny. Then, Thor comes to the goddess Freya’s aid by taking her place in an unusual wedding that is, of course, Loki’s fault.

Overwatch: Tracer — London Calling #3 (of 5)

Mariko Tamaki (W), Babs Tarr (A), Rachael Cohen (C), Bengal (Cover), and Zoe Thorogood (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 3
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
Tracer struggles with guilt after the assassination of Mondatta. Meanwhile, Kace—the major omnic advocate for anti-human-omnic cohabitation—provokes a rebellion
against humans in response to the death of their omnic leader and orders an attack on a monument in London.

Resident Alien: Your Ride’s Here #4 (of 6)

Peter Hogan (W) and Steve Parkhouse (A/C/Cover)
On sale Feb
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
A lonely alien explorer stranded on earth pretends to be a small-town human doctor, and a determined federal agent gets closer to catching him. After a break-in at Harry’s clinic, a child goes missing, and the threat of another abduction looms over Patience, Washington. Harry’s human relationships are only getting more complicated!

Resident Alien Volume 6: Your Ride’s Here TP

Peter Hogan (W) and Steve Parkhouse (A/C/Cover)
On sale Apr 14
FC, 144 pages
$17.99
TP, 7” x 10”
Harry’s learned a lot about himself and the possibility that other aliens have been stranded on Earth, too. He needs to figure out what to do with Honey, the only resident in Patience, USA, who sees him in his true alien form, as well as deal with his feelings toward Asta, his best friend. Brad and Amanda’s wedding day draws near, Dan is concerned about Harry’s safety, and a sinister federal agent pretending to be a new Patience resident visits Harry’s clinic for a checkup! There’s a lot going on in Patience!
Soon to be a SYFY original television series!

Sacred Decay: The Art of Lauren Marx HC

Lauren Marx (W/A)
On sale Apr 21
FC, 136 pages
$29.99
HC, 9 1/2″ x 12”
Fungus blooms and dies, bones weather, and moths form halos around dismembered animals in this darkly exquisite collection from acclaimed artist Lauren Marx. With an impressive eye for detail, Marx brings her uncanny subjects to life—or death—with awe-inspiring texture and intensity. Birds, beasts, fish, plants, and more blossom radiantly on the page in their cycle of birth and destruction.

Celebrated artist Lauren Marx’s first collection highlights work from her latest gallery show and more, with over 120 pages of full-color art. Don’t miss this stunning hardcover!

The Shaolin Cowboy: Shemp Buffet TP

Geof Darrow (W/A/Cover) and Dave Stewart (C)
On sale Apr 7
FC, 144 pages
$19.99
TP, 7” x 10”
The SAGA of one man’s fight against THE WALKING DEAD as you’ve never seen it before!

The action never lets up as a chainsaw of events pits the comic world’s favorite Shaolin Cowboy against a legion of gourmets from the fourth level of hell, intent on turning America’s finest youth into an endless shemp buffet.

Strap on your six-guns, gas up your chainsaw, and hang on, ’cuz you aren’t in Downton Abbey anymore.
• New paperback edition of Geof Darrow’s Eisner Award-winning Shaolin Cowboy, with new cover.

Static TP

Matt Lesniewski (W/A/Cover) and Carlos Badilla (C)
On sale Apr 28
FC, 128 pages
$19.99
TP, 7” x 10”
A new original graphic novel by Matt Lesniewski (The Freak), about a man at the end of his rope, pushed to the edge.

As if being tracked by a violent gang of drug dealers wasn’t enough, a mad scientist’s muscle for hire, who hunts creatures for twisted Frankensteinesque experiments, finds himself fighting his boss and the patchwork monsters he helped create.

Stranger Things and Dungeons & Dragons #4 (of 4)

Jody Houser (W), Jim Zub (W), Diego Galindo (A), MsassyK (C), Anna Dittmann (Variant Cover), Jess Taylor (Variant Cover), David Michael Beck (Variant Cover), and E. M. Gist (Cover)
On sale Feb 3
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
The young heroes of Hawkins find themselves swept up in a sea of change after saving their town from Soviet spies and horrific creatures. Their favorite bookstore has shuttered, and Will and Eleven are moving away, but before they go, the party has one last epic quest to finish.

Unfinished Business HC

Paul Levitz (W), Simon Fraser (A/Cover, and Gary Caldwell (C)
On sale Apr 7
FC, 88 pages
$19.99
HC, 7” x 10”
A priest, a minister and a rabbi walk into a bar . . . except they’re all dead. Not a zombie apocalypse (sorry, Walking Dead fans), but a bit of Unfinished Business that heaven needs the departed clerics to address, if they can. But what awaits them if they succeed—life, afterlife, or oblivion?

A tantalizing original graphic-novel mystery from Eisner Award winner and Eisner Award Hall of Fame inductee Paul Levitz (Legion of Super-Heroes) and Simon Fraser (Kingsman: The Red Diamond, Doctor Who).

Gerard Way!

Tales from the Umbrella Academy: You Look like Death #6 (of 6)

Gerard Way (W), Shaun Simon (W), I. N. J. Culbard (W/Variant Cover), Gabriel Bá (Cover), and Jenny Frison (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 24
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
With funding from the Hollywood Gods, Klaus directs his new film, starring ageing starlet Vivian Clarke, in a longshot attempt to rein in her evil, while finding some peace for his doomed author friend. But the real ace in hole may be the vampire chimp lord who’s put a price on Klaus’s head.

The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys: National Anthem #5 (of 6)

Gerard Way (W), Shaun Simon (W), Leonardo Romero (A/Cover), Jordie Bellaire (C), Becky Cloonan (Variant Cover), and Alvaro Tapia Hidalgo (Variant Cover)
On sale Feb 10
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
As Mike Milligram races towards New York City with the re-assembled Killjoys crew, our band of reality-saving exterminators must fight their way through a deranged corporate hitman known as the Scarecrow, and blast through a giant highway barricade or die trying.

“Leonardo Romero’s kinetic art and Jordie Bellaire’s electrifying colors make this a must-read comic. Five out of five stars!” — ComicBook.com

The Usagi Yojimbo Saga Volume 9 TP & Ltd. Ed. HC

Stan Sakai (W/A/Cover)
On sale Apr 21
b&w, 600 pages
$24.99
TP, 7” x 10”

On sale Apr 21
b&w, 600 pages
$79.99
Ltd Ed HC, 7” x 10”

Usagi and Inspector Ishida team up in the ninth volume of the rabbit ronin saga as they undertake unusual measures and enlist the help of a few surprising sources to solve a series of murders and mysteries! Then, join forces with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in the ongoing battle of good versus evil from Edo-era Japan to New York City!

Collects Usagi Yojimbo volume 32: Mysteries, Usagi Yojimbo volume 33: The Hidden, and every existing Usagi Yojimbo/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles crossover comic in existence!
• Also available in a signed hardcover limited edition!

Mike Mignola! Tom Sniegoski!

Young Hellboy: The Hidden Land #1 (of 4)

Mike Mignola (W/Variant Cover), Tom Sniegoski (W), Craig Rousseau (A), Dave Stewart (C), and Matt Smith (Cover)
On sale Feb 17
FC, 32 pages
$3.99
Miniseries
Stranded on a strange island after a mishap on their way to a South American dig site, Hellboy and Professor Bruttenholm are confronted by all manner of monsters! But even when the stranger who rescues them turns out to be one of Hellboy’s heroes, they aren’t as safe as they think they are!

Join Hellboy creator Mike Mignola as he teams with writer Tom Sniegoski, artist Craig Rousseau, and colorist Dave Stewart to bring you a tale of Hellboy’s childhood!

Youth TP

Curt Pires (W), Alex Diotto (A/Cover), and Dee Cunniffe (C)
On sale Apr 7
FC, 136 pages
$19.99
TP, 7” x 10”
YOUTH is Larry Clark’s Kids meets Chronicle. X-Men by way of Frank Ocean. It smashes together the violence of coming of age with the violence of the superhero narrative—as well as the beauty.

YOUTH is a coming of age story that tells the story of two queer teenagers as they run away from their lives in a bigoted small town, and attempt to make their way to California. Along the way their car breaks down and they join up with a group of fellow misfits on the road. Embarking together in a van traveling the country they party and attempt to find themselves. And then something happens . . .

Collects the original digital series YOUTH #1–#4.

The post A new BLACK HAMMER series, YOUNG HELLBOY, and more in the Dark Horse Comics February 2021 Solicitations appeared first on The Beat.

Full solicitations text and images for Dark Horse comics, graphic novels, and collections scheduled for release in February 2021.

The post A new BLACK HAMMER series, YOUNG HELLBOY, and more in the Dark Horse Comics February 2021 Solicitations appeared first on The Beat.