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February, 2022:

Watch The Skies!

Wow, the things you miss if you blink… Things like Carriers, a new full-color comic series from Red 5 Comics. “Fable, Gladius, Cherrybomb, Dark Dove: No one has heard of these brave heroes… yet… but they are the only thing standing between the citizens of New York and the unseen terrors that lurk all around them. A band of weaponized carrier pigeons, they soar the night sky looking for new threats and find their largest one yet when the Croc King comes climbing up out of the New York sewer!” See? It’s written by Ben Ferrari and Erica J. Heflin, with art by Jim O’Riley (no relation!) and Elias Martin.

image c. 2022 Red 5 Comics

There is Puppetry in my Neighborhood

We had not heard about this, but we should probably mention it now! Animation World Network just reported that PBS Kids has secured some really big grants to help fund new TV series created by Fred Rogers Productions (named after the late great creator of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, of course). And at least one of those series is of note to furry fans: “Inspired by the funny, quirky side of children’s television pioneer Fred Rogers, Donkey Hodie is an imaginative puppet series following the adventures of Donkey Hodie, an enthusiastic and charming go-getter who takes on each day with curiosity and resilience, and her pals Purple Panda, Duck Duck, and Bob Dog. Set in the whimsical land of Someplace Else, the social-emotional series is designed to empower children ages 3-5 to dream big and overcome obstacles in their own lives, to work hard and persevere in the face of failure, to be resourceful and discover they can solve problems on their own — and to laugh themselves silly along the way.”

image c. 2022 Fred Rogers Productions

To Boldly Go Where No Cat Has Gone Before

Looks like we’ve been missing out on the really important parts of Star Trek: Discovery! To wit… “Sharper than a claw and more stunning than a phaser blast, The Book of Grudge’s Prime Directive features her take on everything from space travel to the proper care and training of an array of alien species, Star Trek-inspired quotes, and haiku meditations on Grudge’s most favorite things, including napping and people (as long as they’re far enough away). Make no mistake, Cleveland Booker’s massive – and massively cool – cat, Grudge is no mundane mouser. This taciturn tabby is, in fact, ‘a Queen’. She knows it, and everyone aboard the Discovery knows it, too… though some realize it just a bit too late!” Star Trek Discovery: The Book of Grudge by Robb Pearlman is available now in hardcover from Penguin Random House.

image c. 2022 Penguin Random House

It May Require Super-Genius

Warner Brothers can often be relied upon for strange combination ideas with the properties. So check this out: “From Suicide Squad to Looney Tune Land, John Cena continues to expand his working relationship with Warner Bros., inking a deal to star in Coyote vs. Acme — a new live-action / CG animation hybrid feature that follows the misadventures of classic cartoon character Wile E. Coyote. Based on Ian Frazier’s 1990 humor article “Coyote v. Acme,” the movie is scripted by Samy Burch, and will be directed by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows helmer Dave Green. Mixing courtroom procedural and zany comedic elements, the story is centered on a down-and-out billboard lawyer who decides to represent Wile. E. Coyote in his lawsuit against ACME Corporation over its defective products. Cena will play the lawyer’s former boss, who defends ACME in the case. The film is set to go before cameras in New Mexico in late March.” What’s more, the film is set to be produced by the ever-busy James Gunn. No word on a release date yet, but we’ll be watching.

image c. 2022 Warner Brothers

Oop and Ack on TV!

The last time we saw Berke Breathed’s iconic comic strip series animated was the 1991 TV holiday special, A Wish For Wings That Work. And then, just this week, we get a new press release: “FOX Entertainment has announced the adaptation and development of Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist, screenwriter, producer, and children’s book author Berkeley Breathed’s acclaimed comic strip Bloom County into an animated series… Bento Box will serve as the animation studio on the project.” The article at Animation World Network has a lot more details. No word on a planned release date yet, or whether this will be for broadcast TV or streaming, but we do know that an animated film adaptation of Mr. Breathed’s book HitPig is supposed to be out in theaters later this year.

image c. 2022 FOX Entertainment

Kids, Cooking, and Kookiness

Looks as if people are still thinking up odd and interesting new takes on things… old and new. Try this on for size: “Perhaps one of the most memorable moments in Disney’s 1951 Alice in Wonderland was the Mad Hatter’s Mad Tea Party… It was certainly a deliciously humorous spectacle, so it’s no surprise Disney Television Animation has decided to create a heritage project where Alice’s great-granddaughter – also named Alice – has her own Wonderland bakery. ‘I started thinking about all the whimsy, the comedy, and the peculiar characters that are in the original movie and thought, wow, preschoolers are going to love this,’ remembers Emmy Award-winning writer Chelsea Beyl, creator and executive producer of the all-new series, Alice’s Wonderland Bakery… The series follows a new generation Alice (Libby Rue) as she wields her whisk in Wonderland to create wild cakes, muffins, and more in her enchanted, teapot-shaped bakery. Each 3D-animated episode is comprised of two 11-minute stories where Alice uses her baking skills to solve problems and bring people together in Wonderland.” The article at Animation World Network has a lot more, and the series has already premiered on Disney Channel and Disney Junior.

image c. 2022 Disney Television Animation

Dreaming of a Furry Life

Jess E. Owen is an author who has written several fantasy novels for young readers. Her series The Summer King Chronicles features a whole new world of gryphon and wolf characters. But now, writing under the name of Jessica Kara, she is taking on a whole new kind of fantasy with her new young adult novel, A Furry Faux Paw. The story goes like this: “Online, MauveCat (a cool, confident, glittering pixie cat) has friends and a whole supportive furry community that appreciates her art. At home, Maeve Stephens has to tiptoe around her hoarder mother’s mood and mess. When her life is at its hardest, Maeve can always slip into Mauve, her fursona, and be ‘the happy one’, the bubbliest, friendliest artist in her community ― it’s even how she made her best friend, Jade. With graduation around the corner, Maeve is ready to put her lonely school days behind her and move on with her life. And while her father hasn’t been home since the divorce, he does offer her a dream come true: an all-expenses paid trip to the regional furry convention. Furlympia will have everything Maeve’s been missing ―  friends, art mentors, and other furries! So when her mother forbids her from going, Maeve decides to sneak out on her own.” And what happens then? Find out when A Furry Faux Paw comes out in hardcover this May.

image c. 2022 Page Street Kids

The Furries Called For Help…

Years ago, author Jane Lindskold wrote The Marks Of Our Brothers, an interesting science fiction novel with some neat anthropomorphic aliens in it. Now, she is moving into the realm of fantasy — and even more anthropomorphics — with her new series called Over Where. From her web site: “The Over Where duology is the tale of how three young adults decide to use a shrine to summon supernatural guidance.  Except, instead of getting what they expected, they summon three monstrous creatures from another world. Wait…   Let me try again… Maybe it’s the story of three women past the first blush of youth (or even older) from our Earth who are summoned to a land where magic is real, and all the people are therianthropic (that is, they have a mixture of human and animal traits).  Everyone, including the three summoners, figure this is a huge mistake but, when the humans learn that the summoners can’t get any other help, they decide to stay. According to a mysterious cryptic verse, the first thing they must do is find the Library of the Sapphire Wind.  There’s just one problem.  The Library was destroyed some twenty-five years before.” Library of the Sapphire Wind and Aurora Borealis Bridge are both available now.

image c. 2022 Simon & Schuster

Swat Kats Return, Finally?

We’ve been hearing for a while now about a campaign by the original creators to rejuvenate the cult animated TV series Swat-Kats. Well now there’s this from Animation World Network: “The 1990’s cult classic animation Swat-Kats is set to make a comeback 28 years after the original series was produced. Show creators Christian and Yvon Tremblay have teamed up with Toonz Media Group to produce a brand-new series of the popular show featuring high-flying anthropomorphic feline fighters. The show is set in the fictional mega metropolis of Megakat City, where the two vigilante heroes fight off evil powers to keep their city from becoming a dystopian world.” Still no word on a release date, but this is a big step forward from the Kickstarter campaign.

image c. 2022 Toonz Media Group