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Gorilla

The Great White Ape

Feral Planet is a new publishing company started by Michael Friedlander, the former CEO of FPG Inc. (Guardians). Their first project was successfully fired up on Kickstarter: Goliath, a fully-painted story book written by Mr. Friedlander and illustrated by Mike Ploog (famous for his many designs for Hollywood movies). “The story follows the adventures of a small family of prehistoric people named the Ty clan. The Ty clan live in very difficult times and face incredible dangers every day. To survive, they must embark upon an epic journey to find a new world and the peace they have always dreamed of. They find great strength and determination in their belief in magnificent stories passed down through the generations that speak of giant white guardians that protect and watch over them. As the story unfolds, we will find out if these are just age-old tales the clan elders tell while sitting around the fire or if these great guardians prove to be so much more…” It’s available to order in hardcover over at Previews, and it’s expected to hit the shelves before the end of December.

image c. 2016 Feral Planet

image c. 2016 Feral Planet

Yeah, So He’s Imaginary

How did we ever miss these? Katherine Applegate is a writer of books for young readers, who has some interesting anthropomorphic credentials. The One and Only Ivan is a Newberry Award-winning novel from 2013 about a very special gorilla. “Inspired by the true story of a captive gorilla known as Ivan, this illustrated novel is told from the point of view of Ivan himself. Having spent twenty-seven years behind the glass walls of his enclosure in a shopping mall, Ivan has grown accustomed to humans watching him. He hardly ever thinks about his life in the jungle. Instead, Ivan occupies himself with television, his friends Stella and Bob, and painting. But when he meets Ruby, a baby elephant taken from the wild, he is forced to see their home, and his art, through new eyes.” Take a look over at Amazon.  Then more recently, and even more anthropomorphic perhaps, there’s Crenshaw from 2015. “Jackson and his family have fallen on hard times. There’s no more money for rent. And not much for food, either. His parents, his little sister, and their dog may have to live in their minivan. Again… Crenshaw is a cat. He’s large, he’s outspoken, and he’s imaginary. He has come back into Jackson’s life to help him. But is an imaginary friend enough to save this family from losing everything?” Guess we’ll find out soon enough. It’s also available at Amazon.

image c. 2016 Feiwel & Friends

image c. 2016 Feiwel & Friends

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Should He Monkey With Your Engine?

Terry Moore is a comic book artist and writer known for titles like Strangers in Paradise and Rachel Rising. Well now he’s got a new black & white comic out from Abstract Studios called Motor Girl. Here’s how they describe it: “When Samantha’s junkyard is visited by a UFO looking for spare parts, she is only too happy to oblige. But when word gets out she is a reliable source, Sam’s booming alien business catches the attention of an Area 51 investigator determined to shut her down!” Oh, and did we mention that Samantha’s best friend is a talking gorilla who may or may not exist? Find out more about it all at Ultimate Comics.

image c. 2016 Abstract Studios

image c. 2016 Abstract Studios

Big Ape Before the Movie

BOOM! Studios have been granted an exclusive right to create a new prequel back-story for King Kong himself, taking place before even the original 1933 movie. “Award-winning publisher BOOM! Studios and DeVito Artworks LLC are excited to announce Kong of Skull Island, an original, limited comic book series… featuring the famous gargantuan ape, King Kong, created by Merian C. Cooper, and grounded in artist/author Joe DeVito’s ground-breaking literary property Skull Island.” This new full-color 6-issue mini-series is available now, and BOOM! has a lot of preview stuff on-line.

image c. 2016 BOOM! Studios

image c. 2016 BOOM! Studios

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All Right You Big Ape, Draw!

Fans of comic book art how-to’s would be wise to look up the Pen & Ink series from Boom! Studios, where professional comic book artists go into the details of their creative process in a step-by-step manner. For the next installment, Boom! have tapped the creators of the popular series Six-Gun Gorilla (which we’ve covered here previously). Now artist Jeff Stokely (aided by insights from writer Simon Spurrier) bring us Six-Gun Gorilla: Pen & Ink, which re-creates the first two issues of the comic in a large 11 x 17 inch black & white format with commentary on each panel. You can check it out over at Previews.

image c. 2015 Boom! Studios

image c. 2015 Boom! Studios

Does He Advertise Luggage?

Meanwhile, in another part of the DC Comics universe… Vertigo to be exact. Astro City is of course the well-known “different take on the super-hero concept” comic written by Kurt Busiek. All sorts of characters waltz in and waltz out of its pages, and in Astro City #23, it’s an ape. Yes, Sticks is a talking gorilla, but he’s not in town to be a superhero… he just wants to play the drums in a rock band! This first issue of a 2-part story arc is illustrated by Brent Anderson with, of course, a painted cover by Alex Ross. Look for it now.

image c. 2015 Vertigo Comics

image c. 2015 Vertigo Comics

And More From DC’s Convergence

Looks like Harley Quinn and her lady-pals aren’t the only ones running into talking animals this month. In Convergence: Adventures of Superman #1, the Man of Steel and Supergirl journey through the mysterious Phantom Zone — and wind up battling an army of intelligent apes from the world of Kamandi, Last Boy on Earth! Fortunately Kamandi and some less destruction-minded animals are there to help out. This one is written by Marv Wolfman, one of DC’s superstars. The art is by Andy Owens and Roberto Viacava, with a cover by Mikel Janin. Again, it’s on the shelves right now.

image c. 2015 DC Comics

image c. 2015 DC Comics

She’s a Superhero. Dad’s an Ape.

Sometimes things are described in a very straightforward manner: “The Adventures of Aero-Girl. It’s the story of a young jet-pack wearing sidekick who must not only deal with the death of her father & mentor, but also that his powers (and her destiny) have been transferred to a silverback gorilla.” It’s also a new self-published 4-issue comic book miniseries, written by DeWayne Feenstra and illustrated in full color by Axur Eneas and Juan Pablo Riebeling. After a successful Kickstarter campaign this summer the first issue is available now, so check it out over at Fan Girls Are We.

image c. 2014 by Eneas & Riebeling

image c. 2014 by Eneas & Riebeling

Apes and Ladies and Bad, Bad Sci Fi

What more could you ask for on the weekend? Somehow we missed this: Empire of the Apes, directed by Mark Polonia. “In a distant galaxy three escaped female convicts crash land on a primitive world inhabited by a race of warlike apes. They fight for survival as the humanoid apes fight for their possession, body and soul. A daring escape is their only way out. Hot on their heels are the blood lusting gorillas and a prison warden bent on their return to the prison ship they escaped from.” Got it? You have got to see the trailer for this thing! Could its release on DVD have anything to do with the new Apes movie coming to theaters this summer? Nah! Well anyway, the DVD is available on Amazon.

image c. 2014 Sterling Entertainment

image c. 2014 Sterling Entertainment