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Fantasy

A World for Girls. And Bunnies.

An interesting new graphic novel is on its way — interesting for furry fans, fantasy readers, and anyone exploring their own identity. Try this: “Three years ago, Ash’s mom, Kristin, left home and never came back. Now, Ash lives in the house where Kristin grew up. All of her things are there. Her old room, her old clothes, and the shed where she spent her childhood creating a fantasy world called Koretris. Ash knows all about Koretris: How it’s a haven for girls, with no men or boys allowed, and filled with fanciful landscapes and creatures. When Ash’s friends decide to try going to Koretris using one of Kristin’s spell books, Ash doesn’t think anything will happen. But the spell works, and Ash discovers that the world Kristin created is actually a real place with real inhabitants and very real danger. But if Koretris is real, why is Ash there? Everyone has always called Ash a boy. Ash uses he/him pronouns. Shouldn’t the spell have kept Ash out? And what does it mean if it let Ash in?” Girl Haven by Lilah Sturges and Meaghan Carter is coming this February. Check it out over at Comics Beat.

image c. 2021 Oni Press

Buck to the Future

Don’t blink, or you’ll miss even more new anthropomorphic TV series for kids coming out. Like Deer Squad, coming soon to Nickelodeon. “The adventure-rescue show follows four, lovable, enthusiastic, and heroic deer friends — Kai, Lola, Bobbi and Rammy — who protect the animals of Central Forest and the humans who inhabit Platinum City, a futuristic metropolis surrounding their woodland home. When there’s trouble, the Deer summon their special Planet Powers of Water (Kai), Wood (Lola), Earth (Bobbi) and Sun (Rammy) to solve problems.” The show has already had a successful run overseas, and now it’s set to premier in North America later this month. Animation World Network has a trailer.

image c. 2021 iQIYI

Raptors on the Range

And more new TV series for the younger folk. This time it’s Dino Ranch, coming later this month to Disney Junior. “The animated series, produced by Industrial Brothers and Boat Rocker Studios, follows the Cassidy family as they tackle life in a fantastical, ‘pre-westoric’ setting where dinosaurs roam. As the young explorers learn the ropes, they discover the thrill of ranch life while navigating the great outdoors through unpredictable challenges.” Seriously, sometimes all you need to do is take a look at one picture and it’ll tell you all you want to know about a series! For the rest, visit Animation World Network.

image c. 2020 Boat Rocker Studios

The Wizard of Dis-e-ney Place?

So let’s end the year with… more of The Mouse. They keep bringing it! Wizards of Mickey: Origins, Volume 1 is a new full-color graphic novel that just came out. “When a sorcerer steals a powerful magic crystal from the ancient wizard Nereus, apprentice Mickey Mouse travels to the capital of Grandhaven to reclaim it before Nereus realizes it’s gone. His search leads him to the Grand Sorcerers Tournament, which he enters with two young wizards he meets along the way – Goofy and Donald Duck. Little does he know, a far more sinister plot is unfolding in the shadows of the competition…” Look for it in paperback from Yen Press. [And with that, we wish you all a happier and healthier 2021. Be There With Fur On!]

image c. 2020 Yen Press

Everyone’s After Mickey

Once again, it’s probably better if we just let the publishers describe what Mickey’s All-Stars is all about… “Star artists from around the globe each draw a chapter of Mickey’s wildest adventure — from Giorgio Cavazzano (Disney Masters) to Mike Peraza (Mickey’s Christmas Carol) to Marco Rota, plus dozens more! While celebrating his birthday at a carnival, Mickey crosses the threshold of a fortune-teller’s mystic portal and finds himself flung headlong into an amazing journey. He encounters one phantasmagorical dimension after another — a fractured fairy tale kingdom, a cubist realm, and outer space — with plenty of dragons, mummies, and giant mouse-eating plants along the way. (Not to mention alternate versions of Goofy, Peg Leg Pete, and the Phantom Blot!) Can Mickey get back? How deep does this rabbit hole — er, mouse hole — go?” The answer is available now in hardcover from Fantagraphics.

image c. 2020 Fantagraphics Books

Monsters of Love Tour

Animation World Network let us know about Love Monster, a new animated series for the young set that’s coming soon to HBO Max. It’s based on a series of picture books by Rachel Bright.Love Monster follows the colorful and funny exploits of one-of-a-kind, huggable hero Love Monster as he navigates the challenges involved in being a bit funny looking in a world of cute fluffy things. Every day provides Love Monster the opportunity to embark on all kinds of big adventures with his friends in Fluffytown, where, together, they learn all kinds of little life lessons. Full of heart and helping preschoolers understand and manage different emotions, Love Monster showcases the importance of kindness, empathy, connection, and instinct.” The AWN article includes an official trailer.

image c. 2020 Boat Rocker Studios

Feathers Gonna Fly

Okay, don’t ask us how we missed a graphic novel series with a title like Pirate Penguin vs. Ninja Chicken. But now we’ve found it, thanks to IDW Publishing. “Pirate Penguin and Ninja Chicken are friends. Or maybe they’re enemies. Heck, if they can’t keep track, then how can we!? Whatever they are, they’re definitely hilarious. We think you’ll like this book: there are about a bajillion jokes inside, and it’s filled with action, adventure and arguments. Sometimes the stories are really teeny, about stuff like ice cream smoothies or making fun of your friends (just like real life!), and sometimes the story gets really epic-tastic, filled with spaceships and giant monsters and evil koalas and stuff (just like real life!). Plus, since it’s about pirates, there are at least 17 sword-fights (that’s the rule with pirates).” Written and illustrated by Ray Friesen, PPvsNC has two volumes out in hardcover with a third one due next summer.

image c. 2020 Penguin Random House

Reindeer Redemption

Perfect for the season, we have Randolph the Reindeer, a new illustrated storybook available in hardcover from Arcana. “When a beloved family heirloom is destroyed, an ex-hotshot reindeer must brave a deadly snowstorm to reach Santa’s workshop for a replacement… before Christmas for one family is ruined forever. This is a story for those who have not got the fairytale ending. For those who have lost. And get a shot at redemption!” Illustrated by David Alvarez, it’s written by Arcana’s head honcho Sean Patrick O’Reilly.

image c. 2020 Arcana Studio

Calm DOWN, Girl!

More interesting stuff from the recent Walt Disney Company investors’ presentation. Turning Red is an upcoming Pixar animated feature being directed by Domee Shi, creator of the Oscar-winning animated short Bao. Here’s how Pixar describes the story: “Meet Mei. She experiences the awkwardness of being a teenager, with an added twist: When she gets too excited, she transforms into a giant red panda.” Oh! Turning Red is set to be released in the spring of 2022.

image c. 2020 Disney/Pixar