This June, Boom! Studios will release Cheat Code, the latest Original Graphic Novel based on the popular animated series The Amazing World of Gumball from Cartoon Network. “Cheaters never prosper. But Gumball and Darwin don’t know that! While the Watterson boys are grounded, their classmates advance ahead of them in the new, super-popular video game Monster Fight Friends. A mysterious and forbidden cheat code is just what they need. Too bad it unleashes a gigantic, tech-crazy kaiju onto the streets of Elmore! Written by Megan Brennan (Pencil Pup) and illustrated by Katy Farina, The Amazing World of Gumball: Cheat Code takes adventure in Elmore to a whole new level.” Find out more about this new trade paperback over at Simon & Schuster.
Here’s a new full-color comic-book miniseries coming our way later this month from Antarctic Press: Ultracat, written and illustrated by Jose Fonollosa. “He came from Spain, he ain’t no bird or plane! It’s Ultracat! With his ultra-speed, ultra-strength and ultra-cuteness, the world’s feistiest feline conquers all criminals, from minor burglars to super-villains to that annoying evildoer pug across the hall! Just don’t ask him to go out in the rain or pass up a nap…” So noted. Of course there’s more over at the Antarctic Store.
For those who might have missed it, this is from Wikipedia: “Pearls Before Swine is an American comic strip written and illustrated by Stephan Pastis, a former San Francisco, California lawyer. It chronicles the daily lives of five anthropomorphic animals: A Pig, a Rat, a Zebra, a Goat, and a fraternity of crocodiles, as well as a number of supporting characters. Pastis has said each character represents an aspect of his own personality and world view.” The continuing comic strip can be found over at GoComics. Now, Andrews McMeel Publishing bring us the latest Pearls Before Swine collection in trade paperback. “In I’m Only in This for Me, the Pearls gang dares to tell the hard truths that the country needs to hear: The importance of prioritizing cheese over everything else, the sadly ignored capacity of bears to solve all of life’s problems, and the crucial Recognition Gap between women in bars and semi-obscure cartoonists with delusions of grandeur. But beneath all the selfishness, absurdity, bungling crocs, and bazooka-wielding ducks, Rat, Pig, Goat, and Zebra continue to find that friendship can make life warmer, humor can make stupidity less annoying, and cheese really does make everything way, way better.” Check it out over at Amazon. This new book also includes some special collaboration cartoons between Mr. Pastis and Calvin & Hobbes creator Bill Watterson.
Action Labs Entertainment are now the official U.S. distributors of the Soft Spots line of toys — 36 colorful puppies for kids to collect. Now this month Action Lab is premiering a new Soft Spots full-color comic book series for young readers, written and illustrated by M. Alice LeGrow. “The Soft Spots toy line gets the Action Lab treatment as young Sophia learns lessons of friendship with her colorful cast of pets… the Soft Spots!” According to Previews, each issue comes bundled with one Soft Spot Puppy plush.
IDW Publishing have a new full-color Disney comic miniseries coming out later this month: Disney Magic Kingdom Comics. “IDW’s Disneyland 60th anniversary anthology is here… collecting decades of Disney’s park-themed adventure comics! Carl Barks’ Scrooge McDuck travels from the Mark Twain Riverboat to a Beagle Boy battle; then Donald and Mickey investigate the strange disappearance of the Country Bear Jamboree!” Hmm, we’d like to solve that last one ourselves! Featuring works by Carl Barks, Thad Komorowski, Victor Rios, Don R. Christensen, Al Hubbard, and Massimo Fecchi. Previews has more.
If you haven’t caught the word, this May DC Comics and Hanna Barbera plan to take Scooby Doo and the gang in a very… different direction, with the premier of the new full-color comic book series Scooby Apocalypse. “Those meddling kids — Fred, Daphne, Velma, Shaggy, and their dog, Scooby-Doo — get more ghost-debunking than they bargained for when faced with a fundamental change in their world. The apocalypse has happened. Old rules about logic no longer apply. The creatures of the night are among us, and the crew of the Magical Mystery Machine has to fight to survive—because in the apocalyptic badlands of the near-future, the horrors are real! This new monthly series takes Scooby and the gang to a whole new level and features character designs by comics superstar Jim Lee!” Plus writing by Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis, with regular art by Howard Porter. Read an interview with Mr. Giffen over at Newsarama.
Watch out! We’re about to get flooded by announcements for new sampler comics coming out for Free Comic Book Day — in just a couple of weeks on May 7th. Bleeding Cool has several lists of the titles being released. As usual, there are several titles of furry interest in there if you look, including Awake, Sonic, Grumpy Cat, Sanjay & Craig, The Stuff of Legend, and more. Here’s one that caught our eye: The Pink Panther, released by American Mythology. “He’s been the coolest cat in all of cartoondom for over 50 years! The Pink Panther is back in brand new adventures to tickle your funny bone and test the sanity of The Little Man! Join all of Pink’s pals from the DePatie-Freleng stable including The Inspector and The Ant and The Aardvark, as we welcome The Pink Panther to 21st Century comic books in style! This special FCBD issue is chock-full of fun with new and classic Pink Panther adventures, including the hilarious antics of The Mighty Pan-Thor!” We’ll see, in a couple of weeks!
Somehow we missed this one, but we’re glad to find out about it now. Cartoonist Art Spiegelman (world-famous for his multi-award-winning comic Maus) has created Jack and the Box, a full-color story comic for entry-level readers. “Jack just got a new toy, and it’s full of surprises. Each time the box pops open, there’s a new and bigger surprise. Is it a silly toy, a scary toy… or something else entirely? With a limited vocabulary and unlimited imagination, Art Spiegelman applies his out-of-the-box thinking to a book that has all the surprise and bounce of a Jack-in-the-box.” Check it out over at the publisher, Toon Books. It’s available now at numerous sites, in trade paperback.
Kendra Minadeo is a freelance illustrator based out of Southern California, and a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. As one can see on her web site, her specialty is watercolor paintings — with more than a splash of cuteness thrown in. Her Etsy store features many of her paintings in print form and on buttons. What’s more, she’s even been working on a series of art how-to videos for YouTube.