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Comics Relief: New DR. STRANGE Series, Mark Waid’s EMPIRE Lands At IDW, & Spidey & Iron Man Head To Mardis Gras

In this week’s edition of Comics Relief, we’ve got our first real details about DC Comics’ main Convergence event series, plenty of news of web comics finally heading to print, and a Marvel announcement about a Marvel announcement. And speaking of Marvel, our first news item is all about one of the pillars of the Marvel Universe looking to finally get his own ongoing series once again after far too long….

Dr. Strange To Receive New Ongoing Title Ahead Of Big Screen Debut

Even though he’s one of the handful of original and now iconic Marvel titles created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko in the sixties, and had a successful run of his own comic all throughout the seventies and early eighties, Dr. Strange has had a hard time maintaining his own book for any extended period of time since then. But with a movie starring Benedict Cumberbatch coming next year from Marvel Studios, there was no way Marvel would pass up on the chance to have a new ongoing title featuring the character. In a recent interview with Comic Book Resources, Marvel editor in chief Axel Alonso confirmed that a new Dr. Strange ongoing was coming, and that a creative team was already in place. Hopefully we’ll hear about just who they are before too long.  [Comic Book Resources]


More Convergence Details Emerge From DC (SPOILERS)

We’ve known for a while now just what the Convergence tie-in books will consist of, but not the main Convergence series itself. That changed as DC released the solicits for issues #1-4, as well as the cover for #1 from Ivan Reis. The solicitation was pretty SPOILERY for the end of current weekly series Earth-2: Worlds’ End as well as the Futures’ End, as it seems both those realities end up as part of the villain Telos’ menagerie of lost timelines.

But even more telling is this bit from the solicitation from the first issue- “Your favorite characters from every era and every forgotten series are all here! But are you going to say hello again just to say goodbye forever?” Many fans have thought that Convergence would be the final goodbye for all these old beloved versions of their favorite characters, one last big hurrah, but when worded like that by DC, it seems they might have other plans for these realities once this mini-series is all said and done. Just by hinting that they might “say goodbye forever” probably means the exact opposite will happen. And that makes this old school DC fanboy very happy. Check out the Ivan Reis cover for issue #1 below [Entertainment Weekly]


Mark Waid And Barry Kitson’s Empire Finds A New Home At IDW

Empire, the creator-owned series from Mark Waid and Barry Kitson, about a triumphant villain after he has succeeded in taking over the whole world, has had something of an interesting publishing life. It originally came out from Image Comics, only to find a home at DC Comics, and finally at Thrillbent, Waid’s own digital comics site, which had new pages going up weekly. This week though, IDW Publishing announced that the series would returning to print once more. As the first part of a partnership between IDW and Thrillbent, Empire: Uprising will collect the digital chapters as a monthly series starting this April. The new series will also be followed by a new printing of the original series in paperback. [Comics Alliance]


New York City Comic Con & C2E2 Producer Acquires Emerald City Comic Con

Organizer ReedPOP has now added a third major comic book convention to its roster, as the company announced this week that it has acquired Emerald City Comicon, which is held annually in Seattle. The first con under the new partnership will be taking place March 27-29 in downtown Seattle, Washington. ECCC founder Jim Demonako said in a statement, “We are huge fans of what ReedPOP is doing across the globe in this pop culture space and the ECCC team is excited to have them help us elevate the fan experience at our event” [Comic Book Resources]

FB-eccc-2-8ad83Spidey and Iron Man Are This Year’s Mardi Gras Grand Marshals

Spider-Man and Iron Man may or may not be teaming up in some form in Captain America: Civil War, but they will be get plastered together as Grand Marshals of the 2015 Mardis Gras in New Orleans. (Well, maybe not Tony, unless he’s fallen off the wagon. Maybe Marvel should have sent someone else? Gambit makes more sense.) The Krewe of Caesar, Jefferson Parish, Louisiana’s largest Carnival organization, named the two characters as the grand marshals of its 36th annual parade.

According to Krewe of Caesar’s Captain Robert Carnesi “Spider-Man and Iron Man are true American heroes and someone we all look up to with utmost respect for their service to our country,” Ummm, ok. Sure why not. Let’s pretend they’re real. Spidey and Iron Man aren’t the first comic book characters given this honor — Batman and Robin have already been Grand Marshals, as have the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Oh, and Ryan Reynolds, who is Green Lantern and Deadpool….does he count? [Comic Book Resources]


Dark Horse Comics Set To Collect Web Series Bowery Boys In Hardcover Format

The critically acclaimed web series Bowery Boys: Our Fathers is a coming-of-age tale set in New York City, where the main character, an immigrant named Nikolaus McGovern brings together a crew of his friends to seek justice when his father is framed for murder. Now Dark Horse will release Bowery Boys: Our Fathers in hardcover this August. This new collection will contain the first five seasons of the web series, which was written by Cory Levine, with art by Ian Bertram (Detective Comics, Batman Eternal) and Brent McKee (Outlaw Territory) [Bleeding Cool]


IDW Set To Publish Digital Comic Headspace This April

Speaking of digital comics heading to print, the digital comic Headspace, which was originally published by Monkeybrain Inc, is now going to print over at IDW Publishing this April. From the creative team of Ryan K. Lindsay (CMKY) and Eric Zawadski (Last Born), Headspace is the story of a small town and its sheriff that discovers that they exist in someone’s mind. Writer Ryan K. Lindsay said, ““Headspace is a personal tale Eric and I started kicking around over two years ago; having the collection now through IDW is so, so cool and I feel the emotional core of the book is strong enough to shine through the Philip K. Dick insanity in a John Carpenter flick tone we were going for.” [Bleeding Cool]


Marvel Announces A Secret Wars-Related Announcement

….and yes, I know how that sounds; we’ve reached the point in comic book hype building where we are getting announcement for other announcements. But Marvel made said this week that there is a big announcement coming, next Tuesday, January 20, about their upcoming event series Secret Wars that will dwarf all others. The publisher announced this week that it will be staging a live “kickoff” to May’s Secret Wars event series on January 20 in New York City, and that this well be an “announcement to end all announcements.” Is Marvel going to use Secret Wars to reboot their universe as many have suspected? Who knows, but with this much hype that announcement better deliver, and not just be news that the Great Lakes Avengers are coming back in a new series or something. [Newsarama]



Excited about the return of Dr. Strange, or any of these other news item? Let us know in the comments below.

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  1. ROmComKIng says:

    even though I love Dr. Strange it’s still sad that when his movie comes out and makes millions Marvel still won’t give Ditko the credit for creating Dr. Strange. it all goes to Lee who even has said he didn’t create Strange, it was all Ditko.