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Science Fiction

Bringing Adventure Back From The Brink

We love that tag! So much that we stole it! The Extincts: Quest for the Unicorn Horn is a new hardcover graphic novel. “A team of genetically-enhanced extinct animals embark on top-secret missions around the world in this new graphic novel series. Meet Scratch, Martie, Lug, and Quito, members of a secret organization called R.O.A.R., or the Rescue Ops Acquisition Rangers. When their boss, Dr. Z, finally calls on them for their first big mission, the team heads to Siberia to retrieve an ancient unicorn horn from the thawing permafrost. Scratch is thrilled at the chance to prove his worth to Dr. Z — but as soon as they land, the team runs into a mysterious enemy determined to take them down. With exciting missions, plenty of humor, and an environmental angle, this series starter from New York Times bestselling illustrator Scott Magoon is an action-packed adventure from start to finish.” The publisher has a lot more information.

image c. 2022 Abrams Books

Prehistoric Pups

Formerly a Wall Street investor, currently a teacher and storyteller, Mystery Mike McHale has created a new illustrated book for kids, Dino Dogz, with the help of artist Mike Goldstein. “The DinoDogz (half Dogz/half Dinosaurs) are on a Mission to rescue five StegoPup eggs that have been stolen by the evil Dr. D. Stroy (their creator) before the doctor uses them to create an army of DinoDogz to take over the world!!!! Along the way, the Dogz must face off against enemies controlled by the doctor to collect their DinoDNA to transform into their true DinoDogz selves.” The official web site includes the on-line Dino Dogz game. Mystery Mike says there’s a mascot costume on the way too!

image c. 2022 Mystery Mike’s Funhouse

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

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

They’re Big — and They’re On TV?

John Scalzi’s next science fiction novel The Kaiju Preservation Society hasn’t even been released yet — it comes out in March — but word is out that Fox Entertainment have already optioned the book for a possible TV series adaptation. What’s it about? After New York City is devastated by a COVID outbreak, a bored food delivery driver who’s looking for a change meets up with an old school acquaintance. Turns out that his friend has a very special job — visiting a parallel dimension where giant monsters live and thrive, and seeing to their needs. Soon both these folks find themselves fighting to preserve the delicate balance between the monster’s dimension and our own… while unscrupulous forces work to bring about the destruction of both worlds.

image c. 2022 MacMillan Publishers

Finally To The Moon, Alice!

In 2019 (back in the Before Time!) we told you about Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur, a new 2D animated TV series based on the popular Marvel comic. Like many things during the pandemic, it’s gone through delays. But recently the folks at Disney have released the first trailer for the new series, along with news that it will be coming to television in 2022. “The highly anticipated 2D animated series follows the adventures of 13-year-old super-genius Lunella Lafayette and her 10-ton T-Rex, Devil Dinosaur. After Lunella accidentally brings Devil Dinosaur into present-day New York City via a time vortex, the duo work together to protect the city’s Lower East Side from danger.” See you next summer!

image c. 2021 Walt Disney Television Animation

Rise The Pig

Looking to get caught up with Image Comics’ anthropomorphic series Unnatural? Look no further! Image has brought together the first 12 issues in a new hardcover collection, the Unnatural Omnibus. More from Previews: “Leslie J. Blair is a simple pig girl. She loves sushi, and she hates her job. Her world is dominated by a totalitarian government that interferes in the personal lives of its citizens, punishing transgressors for so-called ‘unnatural’ relationships. Leslie dreams of something different for herself, but these dreams are quickly becoming dangerous. And when she wakes up, it feels as if she’s being watched. For the first time, the whole suspenseful erotic fantasy series that made Mirka Andolfo [writer and artist — ye ed-otter] a rising star is collected in a unique hardcover book, featuring loads of bonus content and an all-new cover by Mirka herself.” Coming this January to a comic book seller near you.

image c. 2021 Image Comics

Not Actually A Cat At All

No, honestly, we’re not off on a feline kick! It just that a lot of the stuff we’re finding is… Like most any serious Marvel fan will tell you, a flerken is not a cat — even if they look very much like one. Well thanks to Nao Fuji, everyone’s favorite flerken has her own comic strip, Marvel Meow. “Join Captain Marvel’s pet, Chewie, as she wreaks havoc in the lives of Marvel’s most popular characters! Gain a new perspective on beloved favorites such as Spider-Man and Iron Man, formidable villains including Thanos and Galactus, and antiheroes like Deadpool, as they all become the playthings of this capricious ‘cat’ creature. Originally shared on Marvel’s official Instagram, these comic strips have been collected with all-new content into a gift book that will delight Marvel and cat enthusiasts alike!” Look (out) for it now from Viz Media.

image c. 2021 Viz Media

Go to the Rats. Again.

This one we found thanks to Facebook of all things. Gizmodo has an article about efforts at Fox to bring Robert C. O’Brien’s world of Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH to television — almost 40 years after Don Bluth and company gave us The Secret of NIMH as an animated film. Here’s what they say about the new project: “NIMH, which seems to be its working title, will be based on Robert O’Brien’s 1971 book Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, and possibly its two sequels Rasco and the Rats of NIMH and R-T, Margaret, and the Rats of NIMH, written by O’Brien’s daughter Jane Leslie Conly after his death. According to Deadline, Fox — already home to animated series Bob’s Burgers, The Simpsons, Family Guy, and more — has already issued a script commitment for the series, but has yet to hire a writer.” They go on to note, “In 2019, the Russo brothers of MCU fame were reportedly going to executive-produce a live-action remake of Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH for MGM, which the studio had announced back in 2015. There’s no word on how this new adaptation may affect the former, but there’s also no guarantee Fox’s version will ever get made, either.” We hadn’t heard about that! It’s interesting that Gizmodo remembers Secret of NIMH as “terrifying” for children, whereas most cartoon fans from the time remember it fondly as a giant leap forward for animation, from a time when the industry was not looking all that great in America.

image c. 2021 MGM Studios