More animation coming to comics! The Amazing World of Gumball is of course a popular Cartoon Network series created by Ben Bocquelet. It brings us the adventures of Gumball, a young blue cat, along with his younger sister Anais, a pink rabbit, and his younger brother Darwin, a goldfish. (Hey look, it’s cartoons! It make sense, okay? Trust us!). Now Boom! Studios have brought Gumball to the world of comics through their Kaboom! imprint. The new series is written by Frank Gibson (Adventure Time) with full-color multi-media art by Tyson Hesse (Bravest Warriors). Of course Kaboom! has a write up on the whole thing.
The unstoppable international phenomenon known as Rovio Studio’s Angry Birds continues with the new Angry Birds full-color comic book series from IDW Publishing. It’s written by Jeff Parker and illustrated by Paco Rodriques. “Angry Birds is based on the wildly popular mobile game by Rovio in which less-than-pleased birds launch all-out attacks on nefarious porkers. IDW’s series is just the latest feather in the cap for Rovio’s monster franchise, which has already spawned countless toys, shirts, games and more, including a film set to land in 2016.” Now you know. Check out the interview with Jeff Parker over at Comic Book Resources.
What more could you ask for on the weekend? Somehow we missed this: Empire of the Apes, directed by Mark Polonia. “In a distant galaxy three escaped female convicts crash land on a primitive world inhabited by a race of warlike apes. They fight for survival as the humanoid apes fight for their possession, body and soul. A daring escape is their only way out. Hot on their heels are the blood lusting gorillas and a prison warden bent on their return to the prison ship they escaped from.” Got it? You have got to see the trailer for this thing! Could its release on DVD have anything to do with the new Apes movie coming to theaters this summer? Nah! Well anyway, the DVD is available on Amazon.
As part of the build up for the (somewhat controversial, ahem ahem…) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie coming this summer, comic book non-fiction author Andrew Farago brings us Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Ultimate Visual History (in hardcover from Insight Editions). As you can see from the cover, it does indeed cover several different iterations of our favorite heroes in a half-shell. “Discover the complete story of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the first time–from their humble beginnings in black-and-white comics created in a home studio in Dover, New Hampshire, to their multimillion-dollar breakout success, and their position as four of the best-loved characters of all time. Featuring interviews with every key figure in the Turtles’ evolution, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Ultimate Visual History presents the tale straight from the mouths of those who were there, including co-creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, animation legend Fred Wolf, creature effects maestro Brian Henson, and even the man behind the Ninja Rap, Vanilla Ice.” Ooo, now there’s a plus… O_o Anyway, check it out at Amazon.
Perhaps it was inevitable that someone would turn Lego toys’ popular anthropomorphic fantasy series Legends of Chima into a comic book — and Papercutz were the ones to do it. No less than three volumes of Lego: Legends of Chima have hit the stands now, in both hardcover and trade paperback editions. They’re written by Yannick Grotholt with full-color art by Comicon (yes, that’s the name). “Chima— a world reigned by animal tribes, divided by the battle of the noble lions against the evil crocodiles. In High Risk [Volume 1] Laval, prince of the Lions and his friend Eris, a warrior of the Eagle Tribe, engage in a training race on their Speedorz. As the two speed through the jungle, they stumble upon a Gorilla convoy transporting CHI that is being attacked by the Crocodiles. Will Laval and Eris save their Gorilla friends? Or will they become Crocodile Meat?” Papercutz has a web site dedicated to the series.
Who knew that Natasha Allegri, creator of Bee & Puppcat, was the one who came up with the idea of gender-swapping the main characters of Adventure Time to create Fiona and Cake? And who knew that her Kickstarter campaign for Bee & Puppycat would become the highest-funded web series in Kickstarter history? (Well, okay, if you’re a fan of hers you probably knew those things!) All of this was more than enough inspiration for Boom! Studios to launch their own full-color Bee & Puppycat comic book mini-series under their Kaboom! imprint. It’s out there now (written and illustrated by Natasha Allegri with help from Garrett Jackson), and you can read more about it at the Kaboom! web site.
The story of Tugg the bull terrier is amazing — and told in great detail on Tugg’s official web site. A rescue dog, he was found as a puppy next to a highway, wrapped in a blanket and riddled with disease. But with the help of an adoptive family of animal control officers, he not only survived but thrived, and has since become a symbol of rescue pets and their needs. Enough that Kim and Blake Ovard have written and illustrated a new 4-issue comic book miniseries, Tugg the Bull Terrier (available now from Ape Entertainment). There’s even a YouTube video preview of the comic. Many of the stories of Tugg the superhero are based at the real-life adventures of the persevering dog.
Andrews McMeel publishing presents Dragon Girl: The Secret Valley, a new trade paperback graphic novel written and illustrated by Jeff Weigel. “Eleven-year-old Alanna and her older brother Hamel are orphans and doing their best to take care of each other until one day Alanna stumbles upon a cave full of dragon eggs. When the eggs hatch with no mother dragon in sight, Alanna decides to take care of the babies herself, even creating a clever costume so that the babies think she, too, is a dragon. With their large appetites and accidental fire burps, Alanna learns that dragon babies are hard work! And when a mama dragon finally comes to claim the babies, Alanna’s costume is so convincing that she is swept along for the ride as they journey to Dragon Rock, a mysterious magnetic force that draws dragons of all shapes and sizes to a magical, untouched valley.” It’s available now, and over at Comic Book Resources they have more of the story.
Hoping to duplicate the success they found with My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (admit it, you know it’s true!) IDW now brings us Littlest Pet Shop in full-color comic book form. Animal-talker Blythe and her multi-species compadres are off on adventures all over Downtown City on their famous polka-dot moped. The series is written by Georgia Ball (My Little Pony) with art by Nico Pena and Antonio Campo (Penguins of Madagascar). The IDW web site has more. There’s also a variant cover version by Katie Cook (My Little Pony).