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Comedy

Space Adventure on Tuesday

Coming in August, Top Shelf Comix bring us this: “Spacebat, the galaxy’s greatest misfit, is pressed into service by three children to battle a mad scientist, his army of ill-mannered robots, and (worst of all) a universe-bending machine. Romp across reality in a wide-ranging escapade for all ages from acclaimed cartoonist Chris Sheridan (Motorcycle Samurai, Plants Vs. Zombies), featuring bold lines, quirky characters, outer-space adventures… and tacos.” Spacebat and the Fugitives Book One: Tacos at the End of the World (whew!) is a full-color graphic novel, available soon in softcover.

image c. 2017 Top Shelf Comix

The Cat and the Lasagna

For those with an interest in one of the longest-running (and best-known) funny animal comic strips, Hermes Press have a new Garfield compilation that sure to cat(ch) your eye. According to the publisher: “Hermes Press is proud to announce their second major collaboration with Paws, Incorporated producing another unique title featuring everyone’s favorite orange cat, Garfield! Hermes and Paws have come together to treat the world to a compendium of the greatest examples of original artwork from classic Garfield daily and Sunday comic strips in their original size, including rare unpublished material, that has never been seen before… This historic archival reprint will feature hundreds of pieces of original production art from the comic strip, with an introductory essay from Jim Davis himself! If you love Garfield and want to experience the strips as they were originally drawn, this is the book for you! From the very beginning in 1979 to the last non-digital strip in 2011, this purrfect book shows you Garfield like you’ve never seen him before!” Jim Davis’ Garfield: The Original Daily and Sunday Art Archive is coming in hardcover later this summer.

image c. 2017 Hermes Press

Kitty Defenders on TV!

We found this recently on Animation World Network: “Malaysian animation studio Animasia and U.S. prodco Pilla-Scheetz Productions have entered into a co- production agreement to develop 2D animated concept Nine Lives of Claw into a multi- platform brand covering animated series, mobile games, and toy line merchandise. Development work has started with the appointment of Jay Lender (SpongeBob SquarePants, Phineas & Ferb) and the producers plan to showcase the pilot episode in MIP Junior 2017. The Nine Lives of Claw follows the hilarious adventures of the sarcastic superhero cat Claw; his genius (albeit high-strung) mouse sidekick Edison, and the always ambitious kitty Purrfessor Purrnelope as they battle the sinister MUTT (Malicious Unleashed Thugs and Thieves) and a slew of other villains to keep things in order in the fair city of Anonymous.” Long live 2D! We’ll let you know if this gets picked up.

image c. 2017 Animasia Studios

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A Fox Raising A Hen House

We’ve been hearing for a while about Le Grand Mechant Renard, a European animated TV special directed by Benjamin Renner (co-director of Ernest & Celestine) based on his graphic novel. Well now First Second Books have released that graphic novel as a new full-color trade paperback, translated into English as The Big Bad Fox. The creator describes it like this: “[It’s] about a fox who isn’t strong enough to catch and eat chickens. Instead, he gets beaten by the chickens. So, he has this weird idea where he’s going to steal eggs and he’s going to raise the small chickens, pretending he’s the mother, but one day, he’s going to eat them.” Got that? There’s an extensive review over at the School Library Journal. Look for the graphic novel this month.

image c. 2017 First Second

And You Think YOU’RE A Fanboy…

Something else that slipped below the radar, even though it appeared at the Sundance Film Festival. Brigsby Bear is a new surreal live-action comedy produced by the Lonely Island folks from Saturday Night Live. According to Wikipedia, the story goes like this: “James Pope was kidnapped from a hospital as a baby and since childhood all the way to adulthood has known nothing about the world except Brigsby Bear, a children’s show character fabricated by his kidnapper parents. One day, James is rescued and brought out into the real world where he learns that Brigsby Bear is not a real children’s show. Confused and baffled by these turn of events, James sets out to make a Brigsby Bear movie to show the world what he has learned.” Starring Kyle Mooney (Saturday Night Live) as James, the film is directed by Dave McCary. Other notable names in the cast include Greg Kinnear and Mark Hamill. Sony Pictures picked up Brigsby Bear and will release it to theaters at the end of July.

image c. 2017 Sony Pictures

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Dog. James Dog.

Recently Animation World Network helped guide us to Secret Agent 00K9, a new independent CGI animation project. “Join Secret Agent 00K9 and be whisked away to a world of fun animal characters and ‘who dun it’ mysteries.  Using state-of-the-art spy gadgets and his own cunning instincts for adventure, 00K9 plies skills of detection across the city of Furrywood, a wild and wooly metropolis filled with animals of all shapes, sizes…and schemes! Creator Brian Hoff is a long-time artist, producer and teacher in the animation community. He’s building a grassroots following for 00K9 to honor his original inspiration – his dog!” Mr. Hoff has created a Patreon page to help finance the project. The AWN article includes an interview with Mr. Hoff as well as a preview video.

image c. 2017 by Brian Hoff

 

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Knight vs. Dragon… Maybe

Improper Books… Well that’s what they call themselves, but actually they’re just interesting. Now they bring us Knight & Dragon: A Story In Six Paths, written by Matt Gibbs and illustrated in full color by Bevis Musson and Nathan Ashworth.Knight & Dragon playfully subverts the story of a heroic Knight defeating a ferocious Dragon to rescue the fair Maiden, by offering variant paths and multiple outcomes to the classic fairy tale adventure — inspired by the Choose Your Own Adventure series.” There’s a preview at the publisher’s web site, and the book is available now in trade paperback.

image c. 2017 Improper Books

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Gimmee My Apple!

A new full-color one-shot comic from Antartic Press: “A chill dude washes up on a totally radical island: Majestic waterfalls, rainbow apples, and crazily great swimming holes. But when a hilarious monkey steals this mellow (but starving) dudes’s rainbow apple, a chase through a jungle results in an radder discovery. Welcome to Rad Island!” What more do you need to know? Well, maybe that it’s written and illustrated by Javier Fox. And it’s available now.

image c. 2017 Antarctic Press

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He’ll Just Have To Bear With It

Recently, Andrews McMeel Publishing brought us the new adventures of a young bear having a really bad time. Here’s what they say about Tucker Grizzwell’s Worst Week Ever: “The Berenstain Bears meets The Simpsons in this rollicking yarn about one really, really terrible week. Tucker Grizzwell is having the worst week ever. He is due to attend the annual Jaws & Claws weekend with his dad, where young grizzlies learn how to be terrifying predators. Problem is, Tucker doesn’t even like to eat meat, let alone have to kill it first! Plus, didn’t some kid get eaten last year during the dumpster-diving lesson?” Things only get more complicated in this full-color graphic novel for all ages, written by Bill Schorr and illustrated by Ralph Smith.

image c. 2017 Andrews McMeel

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