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Oliver Queen Braves the Unknown in the new Middle-Grade Graphic Novel Green Arrow: Stranded

Following 80 years of storied Green Arrow adventures, DC has announced that middle-grade readers and fans of the Emerald Archer alike can prepare for an all-new graphic novel from DC’s Books for Young Readers line with Green Arrow: Stranded, available on March 1, 2022! Penned by award-winning writer Brendan Deneen and illustrator Bell Hosalla, this new take on Green Arrow’s classic origin story stars a younger hero than ever before. Following a plane crash on a deserted island, 13-year old Oliver Queen must quickly learn the skills he needs to survive and protect his injured father.

Ollie has always hated the idea of hunting, but his dad insisted they go on this trip with his business partner, Sebastian, and his son, Tyler. When Ollie fails to take a perfect shot the teasing starts, and he wonders if his dad will ever be proud of him again.

But just when he thought their trip couldn’t get any worse, their private jet is struck by lightning and crash-lands on a deserted island. Ollie awakens to find his dad seriously injured and the other passengers nowhere in sight. If they hope to survive, he’s going to have to learn skills he’s avoided developing so far. Ollie has never felt less sure of who he is…or if he will be able to hang on until help arrives.

Green Arrow: Stranded will be available digitally and at participating bookstores next Spring. This is the third graphic novel that has been announced as part of DC’s 2022 lineup of books for young readers. Earlier this month, the publisher released information on additional middle-grade titles Green Lantern: Alliance (arriving April 5, 2022) and Shazam! Thundercrack (arriving June 7, 2022).

Green Arrow: Stranded

DC Reveals Covers and First Looks at their 2021 Middle Grade Titles

DC Comics has released a first look at some of their middle-grade titles being released in 2021. The graphic novels are geared towards readers ages 9-12.

The standalone stories introduce DC’s iconic characters to a whole new generation of readers. They’re accessible for new readers who are coming to comics, or DC, for the first time.

Metropolis Grove

Written, Illustrated and lettered by Drew Brockington
Colored by Wendy Broom
On sale everywhere books are sold on May 4, 2021
MSRP: $9.99
Pre-order: Amazon

The big city is full of Superman sightings, but here in Metropolis Grove? Every kid in this suburb knows that he’s not real…except newcomer Sonia Patel, who convinces her friends Duncan and Alex to believe! When the trio discover a mysterious cave full of Super-memorabilia, they can’t keep it to themselves, and that sets off a school year full of drama and adventure and more than a few opportunities for a newfound friendship to test its limits.

And when they finally figure out the resident of the cave is Bizarro, things get even more out of control!

Metropolis Grove

The Mystery Of The Meanest Teacher: A Johnny Constantine Graphic Novel

Written by Ryan North
Illustrated and colored by Derek Charm
Lettered by Wes Abbot
On sale everywhere books are sold on June 1, 2021
MSRP: $9.99
Pre-Order: Amazon

After angering a number of hostile spirits in England, 13-year-old magician Johnny Constantine has to find a way out of the country. Persuading his parents to send him to America, John arrives at the Junior Success Boarding School in Salem, Massachusetts. But once there,he finds himself to be something of an outcast. And he is also convinced that his homeroom teacher really has it in for him. Worse, he’s convinced that’s she’s really a witch. Fortunately, John is able to find one kindred spirit at school with whom he’s able to form an alliance–another misfit named Anna, who also happens to have her own developing magical powers. John recruits Anna in his efforts to uncover the truth about Ms. Kayla and expose the Meanest Teacher’s real identity to the world. Joined by a friendly demon named Etrigan, these two amateur sleuths will uncover clues and stumble upon forces beyond their control in a humorous series of misadventures.

The Mystery Of The Meanest Teacher: A Johnny Constantine Graphic Novel

Green Arrow: Stranded

Written by Brendan Deneen
Illustrated and colored by Bell Hosalla
Lettered by AndWorld Design
On sale everywhere books are sold on July 6, 2021
MSRP: $9.99
Pre-Order: Amazon

Following a plane crash on a deserted island, 13-year-old Oliver Queen must learn the skills he needs to survive and to protect his injured father. Ollie has always hated the idea of hunting, but his dad insisted they go on this trip with his business partner, Sebastian, and his son, Tyler. When Ollie fails to take a perfect shot, the teasing starts, and he wonders if his dad will ever be proud of him again. But just when he thought their trip couldn’t get any worse, their private jet is struck by lightning and crash lands on a deserted island. Ollie awakens to find his dad seriously injured and the other passengers nowhere in sight. If they hope to survive, he’s going to have to learn skills he’s been avoiding developing so far. He has never felt less sure of who he is…or if he will be able to hang on until help arrives.

Green Arrow: Stranded

David Byrne and Charlie Stickney are Promoted to Co-Publishers of Scout Comics

Scout Comics logo

Scout Comics & Entertainment Inc. has announced that David Byrne and Charlie Stickney have been promoted to Co-Publishers as the company continues to expand its publishing program and multi-media presence.

James Pruett has shifted his focus to concentrate on his role as Chief Creative Officer and will work closely with CEO Brendan Deneen to expand the company’s presence in the bookstore market and to further exploit Scout’s foreign language, multimedia, and merchandising opportunities.

David Byrne began his Scout career as a production designer in 2019, bringing his film and business education and experience as an editor, writer, and retailer to the team. He has spent the better part of two decades in sales, and owned and operated independent publisher W.i.N. Pictures, producing the hit comic Stake and such well-received titles as Color Me YellowDaisy Gets a BrotherShady Place, and The Couch.

As Co-Publisher, Charlie Stickney emphasizes a creator-first approach, designed to empower writers and artists to help bring their vision to the marketplace. Stickney is the writer/co-creator of the comic book series White AshThe GameGlarien and The Adept. In addition, Charlie has spent the last twenty-plus years writing and producing animation, film and television.  After interning at Marvel Comics, Stickney moved to Los Angeles where he developed and ran the animated series Horrible Histories for Scholastic Entertainment, and Cosmic Quantum Ray for Mike Young Productions. Charlie has also produced content for Sony Pictures, ITV, Universal Pictures, Revolution Studios, and Hulu.

David and Charlie join Deneen and Pruett, as well as the rest of the Scout executive team, including James Haick (President), Tennessee Edwards (Chief Strategy Officer), and Don Handfield (Chief Media Officer), in expanding the publishing and multimedia company.

ALA 2019: DC Reveals a Massive Slate of Graphic Novels Geared Towards Young Adults and Middle Grade Readers Releasing Through 2021

The 2019 convention for the American Library Association (ALA) kicked off with huge news that DC was consolidating its line under three “brands.” That left many to wonder about the future of the DC Zoom and DC Ink graphic novel lines. Launched last year, the new graphic novel imprints were focused on the young adult and middle grade readers and have been hits so far. DC followed up those concerns with an announcement of a slate of graphic novel releases aimed at those young adult and middle grade readers.

These graphic novels continue the focus on stories not part of DC’s ongoing continuity making them accessible to new fans. The releases also focus on the original mandate of YA titles being about “everyday aspirations, struggles, and triumphs,” while the middle grade releases being focused on stories about “friends, family, and growing up.”

Spring 2020 Lineup

Young Adult Titles

  • Gotham High – Written by Melissa de la Cruz and illustrated by Thomas Pitilli (February 2020)
  • The Oracle Code – Written by Marieke Nijkamp and illustrated by Manuel Preitano (March 2020)

Middle Grade Titles

Batman Tales: Once Upon a Crime
Zatanna & the House of Secrets
  • Batman: Overdrive – Written by Shea Fontana and illustrated by Marcelo DiChiara (March 2020)
Batman: Overdrive
DC Super Hero Girls: Powerless
  • Anti/Hero – Written by Kate Karyus Quinn and Demitria Lunetta and illustrated by Maca Gil (April 2020)
  • ArkhaManiacs – Written by Art Baltazar and Franco and illustrated by Art Baltazar (April 2020)
ArkhaManiacs
My Video Game Ate My Homework

Upcoming Titles Debuting in 2020 and 2021

  • Upcoming Young Adult Titles (Not all titles are final)
    • Catwoman: Soulstealer – Adapted by Louise Simonson from Sarah J. Maas’ DC Icon prose novel and illustrated by Samantha Dodge
    • Galaxy: The Prettiest Star – Written by Jadzia Axelrod and illustrated by Cait Zellers
    • House of El Book 1 – Written by Claudia Gray and illustrated by Eric Zawadzki
    • I Am Not Starfire—Written by Mariko Tamaki
    • Mister Miracle – Written by Varian Johnson
    • Nubia – Written by L.L. McKinney and illustrated by Robyn Smith
    • Swamp Thing – Written by Maggie Stiefvater and illustrated by Morgan Beem           
    • Teen Titans: Beast Boy – Written by Kami Garcia and illustrated by Gabriel Picolo
    • Victor & Nora: A Mr. Freeze Story – Written by Lauren Myracle and illustrated by Isaac Goodhart
    • Whistle – Written by E. Lockhart and illustrated by Manuel Preitano
    • Wonder Woman: Tempest Tossed – Written by Laurie Halse Anderson and illustrated by Leila del Duca
    • You Brought Me the Ocean – Written by Alex Sanchez and illustrated by Julie Maroh
    • Zatanna: The Jewel of Gravesend – Written by Alys Arden and illustrated by Jacquelin De Leon
  • Upcoming Middle Grade Titles (Not all titles are final)                         
    • Amethyst: Princess of Gemworld – Written by Shannon and Dean Hale
    • Batman and Robin…and Howard – Written and illustrated by Jeffrey Brown
    • DC Super Hero Girls – Written by Amy Wolfram
    • Dear Super-Villains – Written by Michael Northrop and illustrated by Gustavo Duarte
    • Green Arrow: Stranded – Written by Brendan Deneen and illustrated by Caleb Hosalla
    • Indestructibles Book 1—Written by Ridley Pearson
    • Lois Lane – Written by Grace Ellis and illustrated by Brittney Williams
    • Metropolis Grove – Written and illustrated by Drew Brockington
    • Primer – Written by Thomas Krajewski and Jennifer Muro and illustrated by Gretel Lusky
    • Superman Smashes the Klan – Written by Gene Luen Yang and illustrated by Gurihiru
    • Super Sons Book 3: Escape to Landis – Written by Ridley Pearson and illustrated by Ile Gonzalez          
    • Teen Titans Go! to Camp – Written by Sholly Fisch
    • Teen Titans Go! Roll with It – Written by Heather Nuhfer and P.C. Morrissey 
    • The Mystery of the Meanest Teacher: A Johnny Constantine Graphic Novel – Written by Ryan North and illustrated by Derek Charm

Josh Blaylock’s Mercy Sparx is Being Developed for Film and Television

On the heels of the news that the hit indie comic series will return in 2019, Assemble Media has partnered with Josh Blaylock to develop his Mercy Sparx character across film, tv, and digital.

Mercy Sparx follows the hard-knock exploits of a bad-ass, quick-to-throw-down demon who is kicked out of Hell for bad behavior and banished to Earth, where she finds a new mission from the most unlikely of sources… Heaven. Now amongst mortals, she hunts down rogue angels who have fallen from grace. Or in other words… she’s doing Heaven’s dirty work.

The long-running, punk rock, action-fueled supernatural series, created by Josh Blaylock with the primary art team of Matt Merhoff and Greg & Fake Studio, has spawned over twenty issues, four collected volumes and a 400-page omnibus.

Heller and Assemble execs Scott Veltri and Brendan Deneen will produce alongside producer Daniel Alter.

Scout Comics Announces a New Corporate Structure and Officers

Very few Indie publishers have had the explosive success that Scout Comics has enjoyed in 2018. With breakout hits like Stabbity Bunny, Long Lost, and The Mall, Scout has released an impressive lineup of comics for a new publisher. With this unprecedented growth, Scout Comics has unveiled the revolutionary new Scout Comics & Entertainment, Inc. The new structuring of Scout’s corporate landscape will include Brendan Deneen (CEO) and Tennessee Edwards (CCO), along with new additions James Pruett (COO & Publisher) and James Haick (President).

Scout Comics and Entertainment has strategically established their new corporate headquarters in one of Florida’s most charming and comic friendly cities, Fort Myers.

 

Review: Solarman #1

Solarman #1 CoverBen Tucker is a teenage hacker going after the wealthy and corrupt, fighting bullies, and living in his father’s basement. When a mysterious alien attacks a space station conducting secret experiments, Ben is accidentally exposed to extraterrestrial technology and imbued with nuclear-based power. Now Ben Tucker is a fugitive from the police, an alien menace, and a paramilitary division hunting him down, with the intention to capture…or kill.

It’s been twenty-five years since we’ve seen Solarman, but the comic originally published by Marvel and written by Stan Lee returns courtesy of writers Joseph Illidge and Brendan Deneen, artist N. Steven Harris, and publisher Scout Comics.

Solarman #1 introduces us to Ben Tucker a teenager who is imbued with power in what feels like a modern day update to the classic teenage superhero story. That modern update is one of the strongest things about this debut. It feels real and grounded in a world we can all relate to. Tucker is a teenager that many of us know. His home and neighborhood is one we’ve lived in or know of. This isn’t the “real world” in awe of fantastical beings where average joes attempt to find their place in it all. This is the “real world” in which the fantastical person is going to try to find their place instead. There’s a difference between the two and it’s an important one. Illidge and Deneen are focused on relatable characters that feel like we could know them first and foremost and that person is thrust into something greater.

That grounded relatable feel to it all is helped by N. Steven Harris who provides a character and location that feels like a place we could live. Tucker and the other characters wear clothes we’d expect. Everyone looks like normal people you’d find on the street. It looks solid and most importantly diverse like the real world. Whether it’s in the script, Harris creates a cast that isn’t all one race or another, it’s a bit of everyone.

Solarman #1 is a solid debut and I can’t wait to see what comes next. The issue is an exciting start and fills a much-needed niche that other publishers woefully ignore. This is a superhero comic for the masses and hopefully the masses find it, cause it’s solid. If you’re looking for a superhero alternative from the big 2, look no further.

Story: Joseph Illidge, Brendan Deneen Art: N. Steven Harris
Cover: Andrew Dalhouse, N. Steven Harris
Story: 8.6 Art: 8.6 Overall: 8.6 Recommendation: Buy

Scout Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Atlas Comics Returns


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Jason Goodman, the grandson of Marvel founder Martin Goodman, is bringing back Atlas Comics.  The comic company was originally launched in the 1970’s by his grandfather to compete with Marvel.

From ICV2:

According to industry legends Martin Goodman sold Marvel to Cadence Publications in the early 1970s with the understanding that Goodman’s son Chip would stay on as editorial director of Marvel.  When Stan Lee, with Cadence’s backing, showed Chip the door, Martin Goodman launched what historians now refer to as Atlas/Seaboard Comics to distinguish it from the 1950s Atlas Comics, which was one of the precursor companies to Marvel Comics.  When Goodman sold Marvel, he kept the rights to the Atlas name, and dusted it off in the mid-1970s to compete with Marvel and DC.

It is believed a formal announcement will occur at New York Comic Con, but the company claims to have the rights to hundreds of characters.

Deadline Hollywood is reporting that Brendan Deneen, a former development executive for Scott Rudin and Harvey Weinstein, who is now an editor at St. Martin’s Press/Macmillan, is “spearheading the relaunch,’ and comics industry veteran, J.M. DeMatteis will be the new company’s EIC.

The first two titles that the new company are Phoenix and The Grim Ghost.

Almost American