Recently comic book writer and artist Simon Roy has made quite a name for himself with his science fiction series Prophet. Before that though, he was known for his shorter works — seven of which have now been collected in Jan’s Atomic Heart and Other Stories, coming late this March in trade paperback from Image Comics. In stories like “Jan’s Atomic Heart” and “Shipwrecked with Dan the Gorilla,”, Roy often shows humans interacting with aliens and other species in a very slice-of-life and social way. Check it out at Digital Spy.
The pride of Frostbite Falls, Minnesota return to comics as IDW Publishing brings us Rocky & Bullwinkle #1 this March. It’s the first issue of a 4-issue full-color miniseries written by Mark Evanier and illustrated by Roger Langridge. SEE Rocky and Bullwinkle try to stop Boris and Natasha from duping a wealthy philanthropist in The Psychic Sidekick! The issue also features a back-up story with the dashing Dudley Do-Right battling the the nefarious Snidely Whiplash. Meanwhile, also in March IDW will premiere Rocky & Bullwinkle Classics Volume 1: Star Billing. This 122-page trade paperback gathers together issues 1 – 4 of the original Gold Key Rocky & Bullwinkle comics from the 1970’s, written and illustrated by Al Kilgore. Dudley and his cohorts, as well as Mr. Peabody and Sherman, appear in back-up stories.
With all of the attention that Rocket Raccoon and his fellow Guardians of the Galaxy have been getting, some attention has also begun to shine on a nearly forgotten name: Bill Mantlo. Back in 1976, Bill teamed up with Keith Giffen to introduce the original Rocket Raccoon in the pages of Marvel Preview #7. Not long after Rocket would team up with the Incredible Hulk, of all things, before moving on to his own comic book miniseries. In 1992, Bill Mantlo was struck by a car while he was out roller-blading, and he remained in a coma for many years after the accident. He has since regained consciousness, but he suffered brain damage from the accident and now requires full-time medical attention. Many Marvel fans and comic book professionals are urging Marvel (and Disney, Marvel’s parent company now) to contribute part of the likely sky-high profits from the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy movie towards Bill’s medical needs. Comic book writer Greg Pak has a web-site devoted to the cause of raising money for Bill’s care. Meanwhile, if you haven’t seen it: Marvel has released a new mini-preview of Guardians that includes a bit of Rocket’s voice, Bradley Cooper. It’s interesting to hear the film’s director James Gunn describe Rocket as “the heart of the movie in a lot of ways”.
In 2005 Evan Dorkin (writer) and Jill Thompson (artist) won an Eisner Award for their original comic book series Beasts of Burden, about a haunted small town and the local dogs and cats who do nightly battle with the deadly forces of evil trying to invade. Now comes the brand-new Beasts of Burden: Hunters and Gatherers, a one-shot full-color comic designed to introduce new readers to the animals of Burden Hill and their struggles. This time around, our furry heroes discover that a friendly half-werewolf might just be more help than they bargained for. Hunters and Gatherers will be available at comic book stores this March, from Dark Horse Press.
Signs of the upcoming Free Comic Book Day for 2014 are beginning to show up in Previews and other places. One of the furrier ones on the horizon comes from Marvel: None other than the furries’ favorite Guardian of the Galaxy (unless you’re really into trees), Rocket Raccoon. Written by Joe Caramagna and illustrated by Adam Archer (with a cover by Skottie Young), this 32-page full-color mini-comic features the power procyonid in his own space adventure in anticipation of the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy movie this August. Digital Spy has the story. Don’t forget, Free Comic Book Day comes to a comic book shop near you on May 3rd.
Amigo Comics is a publisher and distributor of creator-owned comic book series. One of their recent titles is Ghost Wolf, a new full-color barbarian adventure series written by El Torres and illustrated by Siku. “The full saga of the Ghost Wolf, the spirit of vengeance of the northern wastes. When the sons of Corr lost their courage, they were swept by the wild tribes. But there was one man decided to fight – and paid with his life. He will become the vessel for the long, forsaken spirit of vengeance. The Ghost Wolf!” Take a look over at the Previews web site before the comic hits the shelves this March.
Just in time for the new Disney Muppets film Muppets Most Wanted (hitting theaters this March) comes a new tie-in book, The Muppets Character Encyclopedia. According to the Muppet Wikia, this 200-page hardcover book features entries on more than 150 Muppet characters and more than 600 full-color photographs. “The most sensational, inspirational, muppetational character encyclopedia ever! You can play the music, light the lights, and meet all your favourite characters from the Muppets in The Muppets Character Encyclopedia. From Animal to Zoot, meet over 150 of the most memorable and best-loved Muppet characters from the 1970s to the present day. It is packed with facts about Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo, The Swedish Chef, and all their wild and wacky buddies. Featuring full-colour images of each Muppets character with annotations. Fact files provide info on each character (and some little known facts), including their role in the Muppets pantheon and details of their first appearance.” It’s available now on Amazon from Dorling Kindersley Publishers Ltd.
If you’ve got to get the bad news (or maybe good news if you’re lucky) about this crazy weather that we’re having, why not get it from a cute little bunny? “Weather Rabbit is a unique combination of weather app and virtual pet that rewards you for keeping your rabbit happy by dressing it in different clothes to match the current weather conditions. It features accurate, up-to-date, local information using your GPS and weather data sourced from Wunderground.com. You can earn new outfits for all four seasons plus more seasonally themed costumes.” This animated app (available on Google Play and The App Store) was created by Rabbx, with character design by Tracy Reynolds. You can find it at the Rabbx web site, too.
This month, with the second issue of the 5-issue mini-series Tales from Oz, Zenescope Entertainment focuses on the Oz fans’ favorite furry when Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Tales from Oz: Cowardly Lion hits the shelves. (Whew, long title!) According to the preview at Previews World: “No race in Oz is more fierce or proud than the Kavari. Their traditions go back hundreds of years and both Thane and Thorne have been born into tribal royalty as the son of the chief. Competition against each other since birth for the right to rule the tribe their rivalry reaches its climax when they both fall in love with the same woman…and must fight each other to the death to determine who will win her hand.” This full-color issue was written by Joe Brusha and illustrated by Miguel Mendonca. The furriest of several variant covers were created by Marat Mychaels and Harvey Tolibao.