Multiple Eisner, Harvey, and GLAAD Award winning writer Greg Rucka teams with writer Eric Trautmann and bestselling artist Mike Henderson to embark on an over-the-top pulp adventure in the upcoming series, Forged. Filled to the brim with violence and Conan-inspired science fiction, this new story will kick off in March 2023 from Image Comics.
Set in the 11th Millennium of the rule of the Eternal Empress, Forged follows a squad of planet-smashing super soldiers who find their routine mission to be anything but. These are the Forged. They take no prisoners.
Forged #1 (Diamond Code JAN230047) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, March 15.
Eisner-winning series writer Greg Rucka is joined by series designer/writer Eric Trautmann, plus writers Aaron Duran and Neal Bailey, and six different artists for the six-issue miniseries Lazarus: X+66, which sets the stage for Lazarus’s sixth story arc, this July.
In Lazarus: X+66 #1, superstar artist Steve Lieber lends his talents to the trials and tribulations of Casey Solomon as she fights to survive Dagger training. Ever since she caught the eye of the Lazarus, Casey has learned that gaining the Family’s attention can be as much of a curse as a blessing. Will Dagger Selection destroy Casey, or will survival mean something worse?
Subsequent issues will feature art by Mack Chater, Justin Greenwood, Alitha Martinez, Bilquis Evely, and Tristan Jones. Each issue will boast a cover by series artist Michael Lark.
Lazarus: X+66 #1 (Diamond code: MAY170628) hits comic book stores Wednesday, July 19th. The final order cutoff deadline for comics retailers is Monday, June 26th.
writers: Nancy Collins, Phil Hester, Mark Rahner, Eric Trautmann, David Walker
artists: Aneke , Fritz Casas, Jethro Morales, Colton Worley, Brett Weldele
covers: Robert Hack (a), Jack Jadson (b)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 48 pages • $7.99 • Teen+
Vampirella first appeared on the scene in 1969 and quickly became a fixture of comics, horror and pop culture! Now, Dynamite Entertainment proudly presents a special, over-sized issue celebrating those heady days with a who’s who from their roister of all-star writers and artists! Just look at this line-up: Nancy Collins joined by artist Fritz Casas, Eric Trautmann joined by painter Brett Weldele, Phil Hester joined by artist Jethro Morales, Mark Rahner joined by artist Colton Worley, and David Walker joined by artist Aneke! Each presents a special tale showcasing the best of the former horror hostess from Drakulon!
Dynamite Entertainment has announced the upcoming release of Vampirella #1969, a 48-page one-shot special that celebrates over 45 years of the vampire heroine’s advenutres in horror and fantasy. The over-sized issue celebrates the heady days of the character’s earliest appearances with contributions from a roster of all-star writers and artists, including: Nancy Collins and Fritz Casas, Eric Trautmann and Brett Weldele, Phil Hester and Jethro Morales, Mark Rahner and Colton Worley, and David Walker and Aneke. Vampirella #1969 will debut in November and feature three covers: one by Robert Hack in retro-style dress, a cover by Jack Jadson, and a rare edition featuring Hack’s artwork in black-and-white, much like the artwork of the original Vampirella magazine.
Several of the Vampirella #1969 contributors have shared their thoughts on the upcoming celebratory event:
Nancy A. Collins: “When I was asked to contribute a story to Vampirella #1969, I went back to see exactly what was going on the month the first issue of Vampirella hit the stands. As it turns out, the police were searching for the killers responsible for the Tate-LaBianca murders while America was dealing with the aftershocks, both physical and cultural, of Hurricane Camille, Woodstock, and Neil Armstrong walking on the moon. My story has classic-era Vampirella landing in a Hollywood that bears a closer resemblance to the reality of the time than what existed in her goofy/campy early adventures.”
Phil Hester: “I was three years old when Vampirella debuted. It wasn’t until I was thirteen that I became very, very interested in the character, especially that life-sized poster I had saved my paper route money to buy. But beyond the undeniable visual impact of Vampirella, there was always a core decency to her character that burned brightly even amid the dark, horror-oriented themes of her stories. She was always, well – good. Even though she was a vampire, and was always mixed up with creepy characters and monstrous villains, she somehow maintained this kind of purity that I found really refreshing in a culture awash with anti-heroes. I hope my story harkens back to that classic Vampirella heroism.”
Eric Trautmann: “One of the things that made me most eager about contributing to Vampirella #1969 was the opportunity to work more in the (pardon the pun) same vein as the Warren-era material – short, punchy, atmospheric, without the need to build a longer continuity. Adding to that the opportunity to see the script realized by an artist like Brett Weldele made this one the best Vampirella experiences I’ve had to date.”
David F. Walker: “I first discovered Vampirella back in the 1970s, when it was a magazine that I wasn’t allowed to look at – too much sex and violence for a little kid. And so for me, Vampirella has always represented something a bit dangerous, or at least the possibility of something dangerous. Those old stories were daring and outrageous, and that’s what I tried to capture when I wrote my contribution to this book.”
A raven-haired heroine, Varmpiella remains – even after four-and-a-half decades of publication – one of the comic industry’s leading ladies, due in no small part to Dynamite Entertainment’s stewardship of the character. Since Vampirella’s very healthy resurgence in 2010, Dynamite has published two volumes of a monthly series, several miniseries and one-shot specials, and crossovers with multimedia brands and comic book peers. The Vampirella franchise is a haven for writers and artists with a penchant for the macabre.
Vampirella #1969 will be shipping in November 2015.
Nancy A. Collins, Gail Simone, Devin Grayson, John Shirley, Steve Bissette, Elaine Lee, Denis St. John, Joe R. Lansdale, Eric Trautmann, Stuart Moore (w)
Jack Jadson, Ronilson Freire, Elmo Eklabuz, Bilquis Evely, Eman Casallos, Mirka Andolfo, Chad Shepherd (a)
Jay Anacleto (c)
FC l 160 pages l $19.99 l Teen+
Nancy A. Collins (Swamp Thing, Sunglasses After Dark) has called upon some of today’s finest creative talents — including Gail Simone, Steve Niles, Joe R. Lansdale, Devin Grayson, Stephen R. Bissette, and many more — to celebrate Vampirella’s 45th Anniversary by crafting an anthology of twisted tales, bizarre bedtime stories, and fearsome fables in the tradition of the original Warren magazines, each featuring everyone’s favorite sexy, kick-ass vampire-turned-monster hunter. While exploring the Transylvanian castle she’s recently inherited, Vampirella discovers a strange old book of “Feary Tales” that seems oddly familiar. Upon opening it, she is sucked inside its pages and lands in a weird alternate reality, where she is compelled by a disembodied voice calling itself ‘The Storyteller’ to live out each of the ‘feary tales’ if she ever hopes to return to reality.
Red Sonja: The She-Devil with a sword has been around since she was created in 1973. (Which I lovehow the number of this issue is an homage to that particular fact.) She’s been a brave warrior, a fierce lover and loyal comrade all through out her existence. Her stories are the stuff that “tall tales” are made of. Which is exactly why I loved this book. It’s a collection of tall tales of sorts, each showcasing different aspects to the She Devil’s personality so that you could get the impression that these would be the type of stories told by friends of hers or others whom merely came into contact with her on their daily travels. The stories are told well. Some of them have adventure and bloodshed while others have heart. Since this is anniversary issue done in anthology style we are not bogged down by long-standing continuity that might be found in other current comics on the shelves today. (Which works out great for me since I am a big fan of the character but admittedly have not been an avid follower of her exploits throughout the years)
Our first story opens with Sonja tracking a caravan through the trail that is transporting suspicious cargo. She views the caravan from afar before making her move. She decides to ambush the marauders, which ends up quite badly. For them. We get some great moments and dialogue here as she kicks the driver off of the moving wagon and says “One side fellow.. I need your wagon more than you do.” This indignation of course draws the ire of the leader of the pack. The warrior decides to attack her head on. While he holds his own at first it is shown that he cannot handle the fierce barbarian and she relieves him of his hands via her blade. My favorite moment of the story is when after she disarms (literally) their leader she tells them she won’t take it personally if they feel that they have not brought enough men to handle her in combat. She then gives this mischievous smile and the remaining warriors quickly retreat. Such a great scene.
In the second story we follow Sonja at a local watering dive, enjoying a brew while she is propositioned by a rather untimely beast. He makes his intentions to Sonja quite clear and which she declines and quietly walks off. Having been embarrassed the beast makes his way after the fire haired beauty to make her change her mind. (Sure that always works, sigh) Sonja being the smart cookie she is, realizes this is about to occur and she makes her way to the next bridge and stops. She readies her weapon for conflict and all of a sudden behind her a larger troll rises from beneath the bridge! (I know it’s a stereotype here, but it just works.) The troll says he’s the new troll of the bridge and thus sworn to eat any human that dares crosses it. Sonja says fair enough but there is a brute twice her size chasing her, perhaps he could wait for that meal. Sonja gleefully takes back a top her horse and sets off. She gets only a few yards up the way when she can hear the sound of the troll and her deranged suitor in battle. She then doubles back and just as the troll is going to enjoy a meal, he shrieks loudly as a sword pierces his eye and he falls backwards. Sonja then strikes him with her blade twice more to give a fair warning. The troll does not heed and she finishes him off swiftly. Upon the troll’s demise she tells her unwanted admirer, that there is “No need to thank me.” To which he tries yet another advance. (Jeez some guys don’t know that no means no) A quick shot to the barbarians “treasure chest” and he finds himself down on the ground mating with the road. This was pretty funny. It showed Sonja’s softer side by offering to save her adversary from a grim death, but then relighted her fiery spirit when she knocked him out. Two stories in and it’s just plain fun.
Our next tale finds Sonja deep in the mountains of winter, trying to keep warm when she spots a cabin. The cabin contains a couple and their ungrateful son. The couple take Sonja in no questions asked and they clothe her and feed her accordingly. Sonja takes notice this is the first time she’s felt safe and cared for since the slaughter of her own family. She chokes back tears thinking “Don’t let them see you cry hereSonja. Not now not ever.” Character moments like this go a long way into making Sonja likeable from her battle tested exterior, and enrich her great character. The son gets jealous and does not like the attention being bestowed upon the beautiful stranger, and in a fit of anger lashes out at both of his parents. Sonja upset that this young man can not see what he has in his family, wants him to realize the error of his ways. He then strikes his own mother, which makes Sonja furious and confronts him. He challenges her to a test of wills with his blade to an unarmed Sonja and she obliges. He makes his way to do battle in the front yard when he turns his back a moment and Sonja packs a snowball with a large rock. With his back turned, she hurls the rock at him and takes him off his feet. Sonja quickly disarms him and has the young man at her mercy. Since she views him as a creature devoid of honor, she marks him for death. Before she can strike the killing blow, the boy’s father intervenes with his bow aimed squarely at Sonja’s head. He and his wife thank her for bringing them small joy, but that is their blood and will handle it themselves. Sonja reluctantly agrees and honors their wish to leave this place. They tell her to keep the blade as it will suit better in her hands than in the clutches of their fool of a son. It is bittersweet as she takes her leave because she realizes that Ori their son, no matter how much of a mess up he is and how much he may prove to be in the future he will always have a place with family. She stows her blade and makes her way on the road not sure of what’s to follow but crystal clearly sure what she’s lost. Very poignant tale, indeed.
Overall: The rest of the issue is rounded out with a few more short tales. One depicting Sonja on trial for a murder (Written by Gail Simone! of Batgirl and Birds of Prey fame) the other with her being captive and forced to be the love slave for a disgusting wealthy patron, and last but not least in a short silent tale written by Cullen Bunn, with no words whatsoever and art by Jonathan Lau (Who must have studied Frank Frazetta, because each panel is gorgeous stuff) makes this quite the collection of talent in one place. So like any good birthday party you want to hit the major bullet points:
Honor the guest of day properly: check
Throw a good feast: check
Have some entertainment: check
Leave people talking with a story: check
I’m surprised it took me so long to come back to these pages, but now that I’ve crashed the party so to speak I will most definitely be a regular. Great story, good dialogue, fantastic art, what’s not to love? I only have one question. Who does Sonja’s dry cleaning? All the blood spilled she should look into that. Dynamite Entertainment blew me away here with their homage to in my opinion the best action/fantasy heroine of all time. Raise a tall glass to this one! Here! Here!
Story: Eric Trautmann, Roy Thomas, Luke Lieberman, Gail Simone, David Walker and Cullen Bunn Art: Ivan Rodriguez, Rich Buckler, Kewbar Baal, Bilquis Evely, Jonathan Lau Story: 8 Art: 9 Overall: 9 Recommendation: Strong Buy
Dynamite Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
Cullen Bunn, Eric Trautmann, Roy Thomas, Luke Lieberman, Gail Simone (w)
Ivan Rodriguez, Rich Buckler, Rod Rodolfo, Kewbar Baal, Bilquis Evely, Jonathan Lau, Ivan Nunes, Marcio Menyz, Arison Aguiar (a)
Ed Benes (c)
FC • 48 pages • $7.99 • Teen+
Since her fearless debut in 1973, the She-Devil with a Sword has redefined the fantasy genre thanks to the efforts of acclaimed writers including Gail Simone, Roy Thomas, Luke Lieberman, and Eric Trautmann! Joined by first-time Sonja writer Cullen Bunn and a handful of amazing artists, these titanic talents each contribute tales of derring-do to this supersized, action-packed anthology. Everyone’s favorite red-tressed heroine battles monsters, rivals, and ne’er-do-wells in Hyborian adventures retro-tinted to capture the flavor of her classic comics era!
Dynamite Entertainment has announced a special Red Sonja #1973 one-shot for release in July, celebrating the sword-wielding heroine’s many years of adventuring. Since her fearless debut in 1973, the “She-Devil with a Sword” has redefined the fantasy genre thanks to the efforts of acclaimed writers including Roy Thomas, Gail Simone, Luke Lieberman, and Eric Trautmann. Joined by first-time Sonja writer Cullen Bunn and amazing artists Dave Acosta and Rich Buckler, these titanic talents each contribute tales to this supersized, action-packed anthology. The Red Sonja#1973 special will feature the red-tressed warrior in battle with monsters, rivals, and ne’er-do-wells, stories retro-tinted to capture the flavor of her classic comics era.
Roy Thomas, the first writer to ever script the adventures and spoken words of Red Sonja, in a release he reflected on the long legacy of the character
It’s been very gratifying to me to witness the popularity of Red Sonja over the past four decades. It was a lucky day when I read a fan-article about Robert E. Howard that mentioned a story in which one of his historical heroes fought alongside a “Russian hell-cat” or whatever precisely the phrase was (her name wasn’t mentioned in the article), so that I obtained a copy of the long out-of-print story from the estate’s literary agent, Glenn Lord, and read it: ‘The Shadow of the Vulture.’ Red Sonya of Rogatine clearly had possibilities as a sometime companion/opponent for Conan in Marvel’s Conan the Barbarian comic, so I changed her name to the (to me) slightly more exotic Red Sonja, thereby making her a somewhat new character and adapted ‘Shadow’ as an issue of Conan. From that time on, she had a life of her own. Barry Windsor-Smith was inspired to do great things with her in the two Conan issues we did together in which she co-starred. Esteban Maroto, over in Spain, couldn’t resist giving her a different look, which came to be called ‘the iron bikini’ after I decided that should be what she wore from then on. John Buscema and Howard Chaykin did a handful of nice stories with her. Frank Thorne came aboard to virtually make her his own. And that was just in the 1970s! I suspect Red Sonja will be around for a long, long time!
The She-Devil with a Sword known as Red Sonja is fantasy fiction’s most prominent female character, formerly a swashbuckling ally of the Robert E. Howard character, Conan. Her early adventures in the Marvel Feature comic book series led to a successful ongoing Red Sonja solo series, a celebrated run of comics from 1976 through 1979. Dynamite Entertainment acquired the Red Sonja license in 2005 as their second-ever published title, arriving on newsstands to critical acclaim and a very receptive audience. Dynamite has since published over one hundred Red Sonja comic books, including crossovers with popular characters including Conan, Dejah Thoris (of Warlord of Mars), Vampirella, Spider-Man, and more.
Red Sonja #1973 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors’ May Previews and will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, Dynamite Digital, iVerse, and Dark Horse Digital.
Story By: Greg Rucka
Story By: Eric Trautmann
Art By: Michael Lark
Art By: Owen Freeman
Cover By: Owen Freeman
Cover Price: $3.50
Digital Price: $2.99
Diamond ID: FEB150615
Published: April 22, 2015
“MERCY” The Conclave has ended, and the world once more is falling to chaos and violence. Sister Bernard travels between Family Domains, ministering to the Waste…and acting as a spy for the Carlyle Family.
Gail Simone, Roy Thomas, Luke Lieberman, Eric Trautmann, Mike Avon Oeming (w)
Sergio Davila, Pablo Marcos, Dave Acosta, Taki Soma, Noah Salonga (a)
Ed Benes, Robert Hack, Andrew Pepoy, Ken Haeser, Pablo Marcos (c)
Fans & retailers, order the cover of your choice!
FC • 48 pages • $7.99 • Teen+
Who knows how to celebrate ten years of Dynamite publishing better than the She-Devil with a Sword herself, RED SONJA? And she’s invited some serious barbarian bards to help! Past and present Sonja scribes GAIL SIMONE (current monthly writer), LUKE LIEBERMAN (the man behind Queen Sonja), MIKE OEMING (the first scribe of Red Sonja’s tenure at Dynamite), ERIC TRAUTMANN (who swept Sonja across the many Hyborian kingdoms), and ROY THOMAS (the man who started it all) pair up with beloved artists for this phenomenal five-story, supersized anthology, celebrating Red Sonja and her many roles and sojourns throughout the Hyborian Age!