The time is once again here for Thanksgiving in America, and while most of us just use the holiday as an excuse to binge on turkey, there is a deeper meaning behind it. It's the day that we set aside to honor the time that the Native Americans helped out the Pilgrims, who would not have otherwise survived the harsh winter in their new home. Things eventually turned pretty sour between the two groups, but that first Thanksgiving stands as a testament to the power of people helping each other through the rough times.
However, Batman apparently never got the memo about brotherhood and equality, which is why a 1954 story in Detective Comics #205 found the Dark Knight traveling back in time to drop the hammer on Gotham City's indigenous population in the name of Bat-Imperialism and discovering "The Origin of the Bat-Cave!" It's one of our favorite crazy stories, and we're rerunning this classic Bizarro Back Issues feature this week in honor of the occasion.
That was Jerry Ordway's solution to the problem that the creative teams behind Superman were facing in the early '90s. After building for years to a wedding between Lois Lane and Clark Kent --- something that had been brewing in comics since 1938 --- plans were put on hold so that the storyline could coincide with the upcoming wedding on TV's Lois and Clark.
The idea was that timing the two versions of the wedding to run at the same time would lead the show's audience into comic book stores and boost sales, but it left the comics with a year of space to fill, and finding something that would take up time and keep readers interested while the TV storyline caught up proved to be difficult. It was so frustrating, in fact, that Ordway's solution ended up being the best idea, and on this day in 1992, DC published 'The Death Of Superman'.
Seriously, folks, I cannot tell you how excited I am about this. Ninjak, if you don't know, is a ninja named Ninjak, and my love for him just based solely on that is as pure and unironic as you are likely to find, and I've been waiting for him to slice his way back into an ongoing series since Valiant first relaunched. But if that simple fact isn't enough for you, here's something that might get you a little more interested: The new ongoing series, kicking off in March from Matt Kindt, Clay Mann and Butch Guice, is hitting shelves with 40 pages per issue, including a full length lead and a new origin story, all for $3.99. And it also involves Ninjak fighting a lady whose hair can cut through metal and start fires.
Naoki Urasawa's Pluto is one of the best comics I've ever read, period. It's engaging on every level, doing the impossible by retelling the single most famous story from the single most famous manga creator of all time -- Astro Boy, by Osamu Tezuka -- as a murder mystery that has an incredible amount of tension and drama. On the rare occasion that anyone asks me for manga recommendations, Pluto is always at the top of my list.
That said, it's also the only Urasawa comic I've ever read. As much as I know that I should dive in for more, Monster and 20th Century Boys are two of the most prominent entries on the long list of comics that I'm sure are great but just haven't gotten around to.
When Viz announced last year that they were going to publish the complete Master Keaton, though, I decided not to let the opportunity pass me by again. After all, this was a book that sounded right up my alley; a world-traveling combination of Indiana Jones and MacGyver, and while it might not come as much of a surprise, I can assure you that the first volume is amazing.
I think it's safe to say that we've all gotten used to the idea of webcomics making the transition into print, whether it's through a Kickstarter campaign or being picked up by a publisher. It happens all the time, but it's a whole lot more rare to see it go the other way around, with a printed comic going up on the web -- which is exactly what's happening this week with Brian Clevinger and Scott Wegener's Atomic Robo.
After seven years of science adventures across multiple eras, Atomic Robo is transitioning to a full-time webcomic at Atomic-Robo.com on Wednesday, January 21, The whole series will be online for free, building up to the debut of the tenth volume, Atomic Robo and the Ring of Fire, this Summer.
Friends and neighbors, it is truly a blessed day: Funky/Dick is finally here.
A few months back, we found an announcement buried in an article in Variety, of all places, that revealed plans for ComicsAlliance's two favorite comic strips, Funky Winkerbean and Dick Tracy, to cross over at the start of the year. Now, the day has come, and there is a very good chance that Les Moore will either be violently murdered or framed for murder. If I was a betting man, I'd put money on the latter, but in my heart, I know I'm hoping for the former.
The 1966 Batman television show was one of the most successful and influential adaptations of comic books to mass media of all time. Over the course of three seasons and 120 episodes, the series became a cultural force with its unique combination of tongue-in-cheek humor, thrilling superhero adventure and celebrity guest stars, and shaped the way the public would view the Caped Crusader for the next five decades. Now, in the midst of a well-deserved renaissance of the show, ComicsAlliance is proud to present The Batman '66 Episode Guide, an in-depth examination of every single adventure, arch-criminal and deathtrap cliffhanger of the series.
This week, Zelda the Great plots to ensnare Batman in an Inescapable Doom Trap... and attacks Wayne Manor to do it!
It seems like Prince of Cats creator Ron Wimberly has been on a tear of producing pretty awesome superhero redesigns lately. It was just a couple of weeks ago that we took a look at his take on Cloak and Dagger and Blade, which involved the vampire hunter swinging around a bokken possessed with the spirit of a legendary Japanese hero that started to glow when the situation got real, and if that wasn't awesome enough, now we have his take on Wonder Woman.
Those of you who spend all your time watching superhero cartoons made for tiny babies (and by that I mean me) may have noticed that there was a half-hour special late last year called LEGO Justice League: Batman Beleagured. If you missed it, it was a very blocky origin story for how Batman joined the Justice League, and it was actually pretty great -- especially the twist ending.
Now, it seems that they're following it up with a second special, and this time, it's about Bizarro arriving in Metropolis and doing... well, exactly what Bizarro does every time he shows up, which is screw things up on a catastrophic level and terrify the populace. And apparently, that's just the tip of a mixed-up iceberg that's going to involve an entire Bizarro League.
Q: How did Dick Tracy solve the case of Li'l Orphan Annie's disappearance and was it appropriately insane? -- @willwise3
A: Oh Will. Will, Will, Will. I want to take a moment to thank you for letting me talk about what is unquestionably the single greatest crossover of the year. For those of you who may have missed it, the Little Orphan Annie comic strip ended a while back with what has to be the most harrowing cliffhanger to ever hit the newspaper page. After eighty years of adventures, Annie went out in the middle of a story where she'd been kidnapped by an actual war criminal called the Butcher of the Balkans, locked up on a boat bound for an unknown shore, with Daddy Warbucks wondering if he would ever see his beloved daughter again. Seriously, that was the last strip, and Annie's final fate until it was announced that Dick Tracy would step up and solve the case last summer.
As for whether or not that story was "insane," well, let me put it this way: It involves SUPER-POWERED MOON PEOPLE, ATOMIC WEAPONS, AND A TIME MACHINE.
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