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April, 2012:

Romance on Werewolf Mountain

It’s called Three Wolves Mountain, and its’ a new black & white manga of the yaoi variety, created by Naono Bohra. We think that the description on Amazon summarizes it best: “Way up in the mountains, far from any major cities or towns, Kaya Susugi runs a small cafe by day and guards a haunted cemetery by night. Then, one night, he comes across werewolf brothers Taro and Jiro. Cheerful but klutzy younger brother Jiro quickly falls head over heels for the capable loner Kaya. What results is a dive into the hot, tail-twitching delight of werewolf mating season!” You read it here folks. It comes out in June from SuBLime, and obviously it’s Adults Only.

image c. Naono Bohra


Pride of the Lions

Well now, this seems to have come out of nowhere: Carnal, Volume 1: Pride of the Lions, written by Jason Bergenstock and illustrated by John Connell.  Here’s the description from an article by Mother/Writer/Gamer: “The first graphic novel in the Carnal series, Pride of the Lions takes place on the continent of New Africa and focuses on three main species of humanistic animals. After the Great War decades earlier between the hyenas and the lions, the victorious and once united lion prides now lay scattered across the land, torn by civil unrest over territory disputes and food shortages. The hyena clans that survived the war were forced deep into the Earth and now live in a massive underground city under the control of a terrible witch. The buffalo race is indifferent to most other species and have walled themselves off from the rest of the kingdoms. Humans have lost their hold on the African territories long ago and live as a simple, nomadic species. The first book opens with Long Eyes, an old sapphire-eyed lion who is determined to save the lion kingdom and rescue his warrior son, Oron, who has gone missing. Long Eyes believes Oron is the key to uniting the prides. A young lioness tracker named Omi is sent out with the protection of two lion brothers to locate the missing warrior, but what they find is something that may unravel the very foundation of life for all species.” This hardcover graphic novel is available for pre-order from Sea Lion Books. It’s arriving in stores this coming May.

image c. 2012 Sea Lion Books

Life Before the Internet

Yes there was. And Gabe Swarr wants to tell you about it. Who is he? According to his web site, “Gabe Swarr is a 15 year veteran of the animation industry. Working many shows you’ve surely seen or heard of; most recently directing The Penguins of Madagascar and El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera. He is currently the Supervising Producer of Kung Fu Panda: The Legends of Awesomeness tv show for Nickelodeon. ” Wow. What’s more, in his copious spare time (!!) Gabe has created Life in the Analog Age, an on-line blog and comic strip where he takes a fond look back at his younger days before the Internet: Days of reading comic books, playing games, and listening to cool music. Equally cool? He portrays himself as an anthro chipmunk critter thing. Check out his store as well, as several of his comics have been collected into mini-book form. We won’t spill the beans, but if you look carefully around the site you can find an Easter egg: An animated short about Gabe’s dad and a box of old comic books…

image c. 2012 Gabe Swarr

Teddy with a Dirty Mouth

… and attitude. Look out below world, but Seth MacFarlane — creator of Family Guy — is about to unleash his first feature film on you this July. Simply called Ted, it tells the story of a young man who once wished that his childhood teddy bear would live with him forever… and now, he does, well into our hero’s adulthood, though both of them are obviously having trouble growing up. Interesting thing is, it appears that Ted the talking stuffed bear, his human friend, AND their other friends get along better that you might expect in this sort of a set-up. The R-rated film stars Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis, as well as Seth MacFarlane himself — yep, he wrote it, he directed it, and he stars as the voice of Ted, who’s animated in CGI. Cartoon Brew has a link to the film’s first trailer — but take warning, this is very raunchy and very very Not Safe For Work! Don’t say we didn’t tell you. Interestingly, Cartoon Brew also has an article about Imagine THIS, a cartoon strip that Lucas Turnbloom has been drawing since 2008… and which has some amazing similarities to Ted. They don’t accuse the Ted team of directly stealing, the the article is still interesting.

image c. 2012 Universal Pictures

Angry Birds — The Series

We’ll forgive you if you think this is another April Fool’s gag, but it isn’t: Word is out that Rovio’s world-conquering game Angry Birds is being developed into an animated series. Look for it to hit (ha ha) this fall. Rovio have confirmed that 52 animated shorts are in production, each  of them 2 – 3 minutes in length. The shorts will be released on numerous mobile devices and, to quote the company, “on all possible devices” — including smart TV’s. What’s more, there’s an Angry Birds feature film in development for possible release in 2013 or 2014. You can read all about it on the ABC News blog.

image c. 2012 Rovio

It’s Spring! Here Come the Rabbits!

We’re pleased to announce that we’ve just gotten word that the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic live-action feature film has been green-lighted! We’re also pleased to announce that today is April 1st…

Speaking of April, our thoughts turn to … the Easter Bunny!

Dreamworks Animation have just released the first official trailer for Rise of the Guardians, which is coming to movie theaters this November. Based on the novel by William Joyce (who also helped to create the script), this 3D CGI movie tells what happens when The Boogieman — known as “Pitch” — threatens to cover the world in a veil of fear.  The guardians of children everywhere — Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman, Jack Frost, and (yes!) the Easter Bunny — join up to defeat him. The Easter Bunny — here known as “Bunnymund” — is voiced by none other than Wolverine himself, Hugh Jackman (whom, you might recall, was also the voice of the hero’s father in the original Happy Feet). Other voices on hand include Alec Baldwin, Chris Pine, Isla Fisher, and Jude Law. Rise of the Guardians is directed by Peter Ramsey, who previously served as head of story on Dreamworks’ Monsters vs. Aliens.

image c. 2012 Dreamworks Animation