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Kickstarter Spotlight: The Broken Frontier Anthology

bfanthology_RRodriguezcoverby Tyler Chin-Tanner

The Broken Frontier anthology brings together some of the brightest talents in mainstream and indie comics today, to tell their own stories about pushing beyond the limits and exploring the great unknown.

All the stories in the anthology are completely creator-owned which means that writers and artists have the freedom to explore new concepts, or finally tell that one story that’s been bouncing around in their heads for years. And judging by the response we got from so many established creators, it’s pretty clear that projects like this are vital in the comics industry.

I’ve always enjoyed the freedom of independent publishing and have done my best work under those conditions. Here at Graphic Policy I was given a very positive review for my last graphic novel, American Terrorist, which was about protest and revolution in the U.S. My new story for the Broken Frontier anthology, The Wall, also has some political undertones, but they’re set in an alternate dystopian universe.

bfanthology_bookplateBut don’t worry, I won’t let politics get in the way of a good story. And I’m working with the amazing Toby Cypress (White Suits, Rodd Racer) on this and he’s known for his fast lines and dynamic artwork, so he’ll make sure we keep the pace up.

I can say with total conviction that I’m excited about each and every story in the anthology. Greg Pak and Tom Raney have a soldier with a phantom limb fighting against ghosts. David Hine and Mark Stafford are setting the scene for an existential murder mystery. Fred Van Lente and Alison Sampson are exploring some interesting cultural norms with their female superhero. Marguerite Bennett is telling a tale of folk lore with a park ranger in Alaska. And I’ve already read all of Noah Van Sciver’s story, Down In A Hole, as that one’s in the can. What a great story!

I know this is going to be an incredible book, one that really resonates with readers as something that goes beyond your typical anthology. But we need to fund this project in order to make it happen.

While we’re no longer picking crowd funding projects to spotlight on our site, we’re allowing project creators to make their case for their project on our platform. We remind individuals, we don’t endorse any of these projects, and that by supporting any crowd funding project, you’re taking any risks associated with doing so. – the Management

Preview: Witchblade #181

Witchblade #181

Story By: David Hine
Art By: Laura Braga
Cover By: Stjepan Sejic
Price: $3.99
Diamond ID: OCT140777
Published: March 18, 2015

The one where Jackie dies! This is the way it had to end. Sara Pezzini goes head to head with Jackie Estacado and the Darkness. Sometimes there are no winners…


Preview: Witchblade #180

Witchblade #180

Story By: David Hine
Art By: Laura Braga
Cover By: Laura Braga
Price: $3.99
Diamond ID: SEP140766
Published: February 11, 2015

DARKNESS FALLS IN WITCHBLADE’S 19TH ANNIVERSARY! In another life Jackie Estacado was Sara Pezzini’s lover and the father of her child. Now he has used the power of the Darkness to endanger the whole of human existence and only the Witchblade can stop him. Here at last is the untold story…the Death Of Jackie Estacado!


Soaring Penguin Press Announces Meanwhile… the comics periodical that you deserve

meanwhileWe want to tell you about the most important new comics journal to arrive in years. With issues releasing every two months, Meanwhile… brings readers an eclectic mix of established, legendary talent and future superstars, acting as a launchpad for the biggest names of tomorrow.

The first issue sees the hugely anticipated return of Gary Spencer Millidge’s Strangehaven. Millidge’s acclaimed idiosyncratic magical reality comic was self-published from 1995 until 2005 in eighteen issues, collected into three graphic novels, gaining numerous international award nominations including Eisners, Eagles and Ignatzes. Meanwhile… presents the exclusive serialization of the fourth and final volume of the series, Strangehaven: Destiny.

They’re also excited to introduce The Bad, Bad Place, a new series by David Hine and Mark Stafford. Among other highlights is Chris Geary’s future spy-story, Melody Baker, 10 Minutes by Yuko Rabbit and Sally Jane Thompson’s Heavy. Rounding out the first issue of Meanwhile…, and cementing our commitment to rising talent, are the 2014 British Library & Arts Thread Comics Unmasked Competition Winners.

Preview: The Return of Spider-Man Noir! A First Look at Edge of Spider-Verse #1!

The biggest Spider-Man event in history is just around the corner as every Spider-Man from every universe unite in Spider-Verse! But first, the madness kicks off in Edge of Spider-Verse, a new 5-issue mini-series spanning multiple universes and the Spider-Men (and women) who inhabit them! Today, Marvel is proud to present your first look at Edge of Spider-Verse #1 – showcasing the return of fan-favorite Spider-Man Noir as he crashes headlong into Spider-Verse! Writers David Hine and Fabrice Sapolsky along with artist Richard Isanove return to the grit and gristle of the streets of NYC circa the 1939 for an all-new tale of the Peter Parker of that era! But a run in with Mysterio at the New York World’s Fair is the least of his worries, as the growing threat of Spider-Verse looms on the not-so-distant horizon!

From the hard-boiled streets of New York returns a classic hero of the Spider-Verse. It will take thousands of Spider-Men (and women) to battle back the coming darkness, and Spider-Man Noir is just the beginning. Don’t miss one moment of the action and prepare yourself for the biggest Spider-Man event in history this September in Edge of Spider-Verse #1!

Plus, don’t miss out on these exciting Edge of Spider-Verse tie-in issues of your favorite ongoing series:

  • Superior Spider-Man #32 & #33
  • Amazing Spider-Man #7 & #8
  • Spider-Man 2099 #5

Variant Cover by GREG LAND (JUL140615)
FOC 8/18/14, ON-SALE 09/10/14


Edge of Spider-Verse Brings Exciting New Creators to the Spider-Man Mythos!

This September, prepare yourself for the biggest Spider-Man story ever with Edge of Spider-Verse, a blockbuster new limited series from some of the hottest rising stars in the industry as they bring their own spin to Spidey with 5 interconnected issues each featuring a radically different spider-powered heroes as they prepare for the terrifying assault of Morlun later this year!

First up, David Hine, Fabrice Sapolsky and Richard Isanove take readers to the dingy, grime covered streets of New York in the 1930’s as Spider-Man: Noir makes his thunderous return! But all is not as it seems in the Noir universe – and not just because Spider-Man finds himself up against Mysterio!

Then, Jason Latour and Robbi Rodriguez explore a universe where the radioactive spider bit another of Peter’s classmates instead. Meet Gwen Stacy: Spider-Woman! She’s smart, charming and can lift a car – just be sure not to tell her Police Chief father! Big seeds of Spider-Verse are planted here as this exciting new character makes her bombastic debut!

In Edge of Spider-Verse #3, critically-acclaimed artist Dustin Weaver makes his Marvel writing debut as he pulls double duty on an all-new story featuring the wildly imaginative world of Dr. Aaron Aikman – Spider-Man! As he traverses his version of New York City in search of the mysterious kidnapper, nothing can prepare him for the unexpected arrival of Morlun himself!

Then, Pulitzer prize nominated horror writer Clay McLeod Chapman and fan-favorite artist Garry Brown take you to a universe where a radioactive spider bites a high school science nerd who is already something of a monster. Experience the story you’ve always known about Spider-Man with a horrific new twist as the epic Spider-Verse waits in the wings.

Finally, Eisner-award winning Umbrella Academy writer Gerard Way makes his Marvel Comics debut alongside critically-acclaimed artist Jake Wyatt for an issue that will have everyone asking – who or what is SP//dr? Venture into a fantastic new universe and meet the incredible spider character who inhabits it!

As the coming events prepare to shake up the wallcrawlers of each and every universe, no fan can afford to miss an introduction to some of the key players in Novembers highly-anticipated Spider-Verse event! Morlun is ready for war. And it’ll take every Spider-Man ever to stop him. This September, hang on tight as you enter the Edge of Spider-Verse!

Coming in September!

Coming in September!

Art & Cover by DUSTIN  WEAVER
Coming in September!

Art & Cover by GARRY BROWN
Coming in October!

Written by GERARD WAY
Art & Cover by JAKE WYATT
Coming in October!

Edge_of_Spider-Verse_1_Cover Edge_of_Spider-Verse_2_Cover Edge_of_Spider-Verse_3_Cover

David Hine & Mark Stafford Joining Meanwhile

Soaring Penguin Press has announced that Mark Stafford and David Hine will be teaming up again, post The Man Who Laughs, their critically acclaimed adaptation of the Victor Hugo novel.

Their new, original story, The Bad Bad Place, will be serialised in Meanwhile…,  Soaring Penguin Press’s bi-monthly anthology series which will begin May 2014.

The series follows the sordid and mysterious history of Faraway Hills, a typical modern-built small town in middle-England, seemingly left deserted and abandoned by its citizens – apart from a madman.

The madman, the town’s former Town Crier, reveals story by story the various individuals that disappeared into a mysterious sprawling Victorian manor at the border of the town.

This story will appear alongside the continuation of Gary Spencer Millidge‘s Strangehaven, a superb self-published series from the nineties and noughties, returning to print after an eight-year absence to complete the final chapter.

Meanwhile will also the available digitally via the Sequential app.

The Death of The Darkness Has Arrived!

Jackie Estacado, bearer of the Darkness, saw a chance to alter reality and took it. The consequences of that decision played out in the pages of The Darkness, as Jackie watched his world rot from the inside out while he was powerless to stop the corruption.

Now, writer David Hine and artist Stjepan Sejic are putting an end to Jackie Estacado in this landmark event in the mythos of The Darkness with the release of The Darkness: The Death of Jackie Estacado, a 128-page graphic novel releasing this November.

When Jackie chose to alter reality by resurrecting a past love, he provided a pathway for an older, more horrible evil than the Darkness to enter the world. As long as Jackie lives, that evil will strengthen its hold on the world. In order for everyone to live, Jackie Estacado must die, and Witchblade-bearer Sara Pezzini, whose own life was irrevocably altered by Jackie’s choice, is his executioner.

The Darkness: The Death of Jackie Estacado follows up on recent events in THE DARKNESS, and is essential for anyone curious about where the Top Cow Universe is going to go next.

The Darkness: The Death of Jackie Estacado GN will be released on 12/11 at $9.99 for 128 pages, and can be pre-ordered using Diamond Code SEP130525.


Review: Aphrodite IX #5, The Darkness #115, Cyber Force #6

Aphrodite IX #5

AIX005001Aphrodite IX woke up in a new world with no memory and no idea of her true purpose. But finding out the truth about herself and how her handler Burch has been manipulating her will change everything.

Top Cow has been reinventing it’s properties. Some have been a shift in the world, others, like two on this list, have seen their entire concept changed (from what I’ve experienced).  Aphrodite IX is one of the more interesting ones, featuring a world destroyed and made up of two rival individuals, those with a belief in a higher power and more in harmony with nature and those relying on technology.

Aphrodite IX is a comic that actually is much deeper than one might think. While the main story deals with Aphrodite and her being used as a pawn in the war between these two factions, it’s actually a greater story that dives into the debate of faith versus science, god versus what’s measurable.

Even more than that, there’s the question of destiny, fate, and choice. Aphrodite is a pawn in a war, controlled and manipulated by men. She’s seen as a tool by some and as an actual woman by others.

While there’s some slight issues with the actual story telling here, it’s a bit choppy at points, writer Matt Hawkins has put together an interesting series that’s much more layered than it might seem at first.

On top of Hawkins writing is Stjepan Sejic‘s beautiful art. His style is unique and quite amazing with a painted style that has you linger on pages. He’s proven time and time again, he’s a master artist, one of the most visually unique and striking.

The two together have created an interesting reboot and one of Top Cow’s strongest series right now.

Story: Matt Hawkins Art: Stjepan Sejic
Story: 7 Art: 8.5 Overall: 7 Recommendation: Buy

The Darkness #115

DK115001Hope Estacado is very much her father’s daughter. But Jackie Estacado was raised to be a hired killer for a crime family before he inherited the curse of the Darkness. As she matures to take care of her mentally unstable mother, what terrible rites of passage await Hope?

It’s been a bit since I’ve read the adventures of Jackie Estacado. I read the series for a bit after the big world shift, but something wasn’t quite clicking for me. I decided to dive back in reading the previous issue and this one generally catching me up on what’s been going on.

The story is pretty simple in this two part arc which had the Darkness splitting from Jackie and creating a doppleganger. In this issue Jackie struggles to get the Darkness back in a giant battle. The story is ok to me, but since it’s a sliver of a greater storyline, new readers might feel a bit lost. I generally had an idea of what was going on from some of the other Top Cow comics out there.

As a whole from what I’ve read of The Darkness since Top Cow’s bold decision to twist it’s world, it’s been an ok read. The edge that has been a part of the series has been missing a little and the story for me isn’t moving as fast as it should. Lots gets dragged out and there’s just something missing to me as a reader.

What’s fascinating is the Top Cow world is slightly off after the changes that Jackie and Hope made to it all and this series since has been slightly off as well.

Story: David Hine Art: Jeremy Haun
Story: 6.75 Art: 7 Overall: 6.75 Recommendation: Read

Cyber Force #6

cyberforce6c-webVelocity and Ripclaw have been left hurting since their last confrontation with CDI. To eradicate the rogue Cyber Force faction once and for all, an even more dangerous and uncontrollable threat has been activated.

It had been a bit since I read the fifth issue of Cyber Force, and I came into the sixth one a bit shocked as to the events. I had to go back and remind myself what I missed. The series as a whole has suffered a bit of choppy storytelling that was a signature of Image’s earliest comics. While the above was the solicit text for this issue, that “activation” doesn’t come until the very end of the issue.

For the most part, this issue is a stand-off with a lot of orders being barked around moving the story along. But what I actually enjoyed the most about the issue was the flashbacks, fleshing out some of the history we haven’t been introduced to.

The comic begins with how Stryker became the man we know now. In too few pages, the character has a depth added to him that was missing. The character went from a stereotype to someone very interesting. It’s taken six issues to get there, and I’m not sure when I would have added it earlier, but it makes the series get really interesting for me. In enjoy characters with depth, and here we start to see more of that.

Overall, this isn’t the Cyber Force you might know from years past. Creator Marc Silverstri has taken the characters and reworked them and the series into a future dystopian nightmare tale. The series is a departure from what’s come before, but familiar.

I think for me the most interesting thing has been what’s new. Silverstri has done a daring thing, and like Aphrodite IX, divorced these characters from the general Top Cow universe…. I think. Though it was fun to see the tech and religious mix of the previous Top Cow world, these two series keep the tech separate from the general Top Cow universe, almost grounding them in a way.

Marco Turini’s art is pretty solid, giving the series a gritty and dirty look that fits the world the story takes place in.

Overall, Top Cow has done a pretty daring thing reworking this entire series. Couple that with this series starting off as a Kickstarter project, and things get really fascinating.

I think the story and series is just starting, and this looks like this’ll be a fun one to see where it goes down the road. Because right now, anything can happen.

Story: Marc Silvestri Art: Marco Turini
Story: 7 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.25 Recommendation: Buy

Top Cow provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review

Preview: The Darkness #115

The Darkness #115

Story By: David Hine
Art By: Jeremy Haun
Art By: John Rauch
Price: $3.99
Diamond ID: APR130533
Published: September 18, 2013

“THE AGE OF REASON,” Part TwoHope Estacado is very much her father’s daughter. But Jackie Estacado was raised to be a hired killer for a crime family before he inherited the curse of the Darkness. As she matures to take care of her mentally unstable mother, what terrible rites of passage await Hope?


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