Tag Archives: grimm fairy tales

Zenescope is Kickstarting a Grimm Fairy Tales “Sela” Bishoujo Style Collectible Statue

Zenescope Entertainment has successfully funded its newest Kickstarter campaign in less than 3 hours as the company unveiled a new line of “bishoujo-style” collectible figures based on its most popular female lead characters from Zenescope’s ever-growing stable of comic book titles.

The first statue Zenescope is introducing is Sela Mathers, the main protagonist from the company’s ultra-popular Grimm Fairy Tales comic book series. Sela, known as “Guardian of the Nexus,” works to protect Earth from evil attempting to invade our world from other realms. The statue will stand at nearly nine inches tall and portrays Sela with her trusty sword and holding her enchanted, yet powerful, book of fairy tales.

Aside from the original version, Zenescope is also offering 250 limited edition special “black & white” versions of the statue through Kickstarter pledges. The sculpt is based on design illustrations by one of Zenescope’s top artists, Jason Cardy.

The campaign has different pledge tiers for both retailers and consumers who can choose to reserve their statue as well as other highly sought after Zenescope merchandise. Each statue reserved via Kickstarter also comes with a Grimm Fairy Tales limited edition exclusive issue with cover art by designer, Jason Cardy. The campaign will run until Tuesday, June 5th at 4:00pm.

Around the Tubes

Happy New Year everyone! We’re going strong today and will have all sorts of news, new data, best of lists, and more today. Thank you everyone for making 2017 awesome and on to 2018!

Albert Lea Tribune – Local comic book store begins hosting bi-weekly children’s event – Fantastic to see shops doing this!

Boing Boing – Happy Public Domain day! Here are the works entering the public domain in Canada and the EU, but not the USA, where the public domain is stagnant – Sigh…

Newsarama – Inside Africa’s Largest Comic Convention, Lagos Comic Con – Would love to check this out some year.

Newsarama – Zenescope’s Grimm Fairy Tales In Development As A Movie – With the budget vs. return on horror movies, this could be some of the most profitable comic films ever.

 

Reviews

Comic Book – Hawkman Found #1

Comic Book – Saban’s Go Go Power Rangers #5

Zenescope’s Grimm Fairy Tales Returns in December

Zenescope Entertainment has announced that Grimm Fairy Tales, the company’s flagship series, returns this December.

Grimm Fairy Tales is the cornerstone of Zenescope’s Grimm Universe and its evolution shows just how much the company has grown over the past eleven years. The new Grimm Fairy Tales follows Sela’s daughter, Skye Mathers, who has taken over her mother’s responsibilities as the Guardian of the Nexus. And series creators Joe Brusha and Ralph Tedesco are taking the epic series back to its roots.

The new series will follow Skye as she attempts to guide those who may have untapped special abilities and are heading down the wrong path in life.  Each story will be self-contained and very much in line with the earlier issues of the original series.

Grimm Fairy Tales #1 features 7 covers by some of the industry’s best talent, including David Finch, Eric Basaldua, Greg Horn, Talent Caldwell, and Josh Burns. The creative team includes veterans and newcomers alike, boasting names such as, Grimm Fairy Tales co-creator and writer Joe Brusha, jaw-dropping interior art by Ediano Silva, colors by Ivan Nunes, and letters by Taylor Esposito of Ghost Glyph Studios.

grimm-fairy-tales

Fan Expo 2015 – Cover Search

coversearch005It is important to remember that beneath all the memorabilia and all the vendors at a convention, that beneath it all, the mediums exists there.  While fans of television and film flock to screenings of new movies or television episodes, comic fans are left either in artist alley or searching the back issue bins for a missing issue in a collection.  Surprisingly though, there is even a bit of a move away from this specific source at comic conventions, as it becomes less and less profitable for comic book stores to set up shop in a booth when their margins are not so high.  Not surprisingly therefore it can be a bit of a challenge to find comics at all.

At the previous comic book convention that I attended I got so exasperated in trying to find specific issues that I effectively gave up and tried to find a specific issue of a decades-old Kamandi comic.  It should be noted though that Fan Expo is quite a bit larger than the Toronto Comic Con, even though they are run by the same people, and so more vendors were on hand at Fan Expo 2015 than at Toronto Comic Con 2015.  With this in hand, I coversearch003decided that I would search out three separate issues that I had been looking for.  The reasons for buying the covers were somewhat shallow, I had already read the issues themselves, and I was just looking for issues whose covers had stood out for me.  I thus decided on three issues, two from DC’s new 52, and one from Zenescope from a few years back.  Batgirl #26 stands out to me as one of the most beautiful covers that I have seen in recent years, and Wonder Woman #36 was of interest to me to see if the value had gone up at all as the beginning point in the series for the creative team of Meredith and David Finch.  Reaching a bit further back was the cover for Myths and Legends #1 from Zenescope, a J. Scott Campbell cover, that the company uses all the time in its own advertisements.

Here were my findings, booth by booth:

coversearch004Booth #1

The first booth had two different setups.  Some of the more sought after recent issues were displayed on a table.  I found Wonder Woman #36 here right away, with several copies available – there were a lot, I didn’t bother to count – and all of them for $4.  Strangely enough, after checking the nearby back issue bins, I found the exact same issue for $3.99, effectively the same price, unless I was buying hundreds of them.  Still technically this ended up being the cheapest that I could find.  For Batgirl there were several nearby in the same sequence, but no #26, and there were no Grimm Fairy Tales at all.

Booth #2

I had no luck here at all.  They had the first issue of the new 52 run for Wonder Woman, but no recent Batgirl, and coversearch007no Grimm Fairy Tales at all.

Booth #3

I had even less luck here.  For both Wonder Woman and Batgirl there were only older back issues, and again no Grimm Fairy Tales of any kind.

Booth #4

This one was better.  It had no Wonder Woman of the modern era, but it had three of Batgirl #26, all at $4, though none at all again for Grimm Fairy Tales.

Booth #5

A decent collection of Wonder Woman, though nothing new 52, and no Batgirl or Grimm Fairy Tales.

coversearch001Booth #6

This booth had a few new 52 Wonder Woman issues, but no #36.  It did have two #26 of Batgirl, going for the standard price of $4.  This place also had the most interesting collection that I saw while browsing, the entire collection of Alien Worlds eight issues for about $40.

Booth #7

Something about saving the best for last?  Well not quite.  This booth had 3 of Wonder Woman #36, including the Lego variant ($4) and the blank variant ($7) as well as the regular for $4.  No Batgirl again, but this booth had by far the best selection of Grimm Fairy Tales, though not one of Myths and Legends #1.  I picked up another that caught my eye, a variant for Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Oz #5, though as this was the last booth, I gave up hope on finding the last issue and cover.

coversearch002… but …

After a walk down artist alley I noticed the Zenescope booth for the first time, and there on a cover of a book about Zenescope art was the cover that I was looking for.  I flipped through it, but wasn’t really interested in it, especially after the previously unseen booth babe laid a hard sell on me, trying to get me to pay $130 for it.  I put it down and walked around the other side of the booth and found some single exclusives, in this case focused on J. Scott Campbell and Dawn McTeigue as they were nearby, and they admitted trying to push some of these as they were hoping people would buy them to get them. I finally found the cover as the alternte to Code Red #1 (Zenescope does re-use this

Review: Wonderland #39

wonderland039In the publication history of Wonderland there have been more or less only two general outlooks for the series.  The first dealt with the Liddle family, and specifically Calie, trying to battle against the maddening influence of the horror dimension.  This led her into conflict with the various rulers of Wonderland – the Jabberwocky, the Queen of Hearts, the Queen of Spades – each of whom she destroyed, until she eventually became the White Queen of Wonderland, which changed the outlook for the first time in her stories.  In these stories she was recast as a force trying to clean up Wonderland from the myriad of insanities which plague it.  For her character, this has been a natural evolution, and a clever one under the hand of Erica J. Heflin, but there was a difference between her new and the old.  While she still dealt with problems on Earth from time to time, her main focus became Wonderland, and the series changed from that of a psychological horror, to something more like a fantastical one.

Issue #39 of this series represents the first time that the two different outlooks are presented in the same issue.  The story is told in a bit of a non sequitur to what has been playing out in recent issues, though this is also briefly touched upon.  Instead a mysterious person is stalking Calie, someone from both her past and her mother’s.  This touches on the earliest moments in this series and touches more so on the madness that used to play out in these stories.  It is revealed that this man used to be the butcher in the neighborhood where the Liddles lived, although he harbored a secret love for Alice which led him to the dark dimension.

While there is a decent setup for this new nemesis in Calie’s life, his introduction is also somewhat of an x factor.  He is built up well here, but his place in the overall story is a mystery as there is essentially no context for his appearance.  The same general level of performance is here for the series as Heflin manages another engaging story, but it remains to be seen exactly how this fits into the bigger picture, as it is still somewhat undefined.  At the very least it proves that she has an understanding of what made the series so popular to begin with and can channel that same concept into her own version of the series.  The only issue is that it is somewhat non sequitur, it will likely be incorporated into the story line in a meaningful way in the coming issues, but for the moment it is an outlier in terms of its placement in the series, and so while engaging it takes a way a bit from the overall narrative of the series.

Story: Erica J. Heflin Art: Marc Rosete
Story: 8.7 Art: 8.7  Overall: 8.7  Recommendation: Buy

Review: Coven #2

coven002It is common among the independent publishers that they tend to take more chances and to give more creative control to their writers and artists.  Despite that, Zenescope could be identified as one of the companies that does so less than than others.  After the initial success of Grimm Fairy Tales, it mostly figured out this formula and while there is always room for creativity, it has also not deviated too far from this script too often.  This is perhaps most true in the main Grimm Fairy Tales title, which while it has moved into more of a Young Adult setting, is also one which hasn’t really tried to push its own boundaries since its early days.  There is of course another problem for an independent like Zenescope and that is exposure.  With a much smaller portion of the comic market, they have to make calculated decisions more so than the bigger companies, which can give secondary characters a chance to shine in their own series before letting them fail and pass back into obscurity. This leaves many of the more intriguing characters that Zenescope has at its disposal often unused with the likes of Britney Waters, Liesel Van Helsing and Baba Yaga often reduced to only cameo appearances.

What Zenescope does do well though is give its second tier group of heroines a chance to shine in miniseries, and such is the case with Coven.  As was shown in the first issue, a small coven of witches is attacked with their leader subdued and kidnapped while the others are murdered.  Baba Yaga intervenes in order to find one of her disciples and in this issue enlists the aid of some other powerful witches before launching her rescue mission.

While an occult vs. military concept is not exactly new, it is interesting to see it in this setting for Grimm Fairy Tales.  While a lot of the properties for Grimm Fairy Tales can be fun, they also seem to be in somewhat of a comfort zone, and don’t really move much beyond that.  This series on the other hand seems to be trying a few new things, and while they are not spectacular at least deserve to be recognized as such.  Also worthy of recognition is that the series features Baba Yaga, on the surface a strange choice for a series protagonist but also one that works in this setting.  This might not be an amazing series, but it is fun and worth a look for those that don’t mind a bit of a mix between genres.

Story: Zach Calig Art: Diego Galindo
Story: 8.7 Art: 8.7 Overall: 8.7 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Oz – Reign of the Witch Queen #4

oz001For the most part Grimm Fairy Tales has stayed pretty close to the source material when it has come to interpreting classic works of literature.  There are often times some switches, such as making Pan into the villain, making Mowgli into a girl or turning Wonderland into a world of nightmares, but they mostly still contain the same characteristics of the world that was created by the writers of the classical fiction.  When it comes to Oz though, the script gets changed somewhat.  As the story of Oz is somewhat limited to only Dorothy’s journey along the yellow brick road, it could be said that there is a lot more which could be explored, but also in so doing, a lot more which could take it away from the original story.  Such has been the case with Grimm Fairy Tales’ take on Oz.  It has been related to the Baum’s work, but has deviated from it somewhat, changing Dorothy from simple farmgirl to sorceress in waiting, and changing the majority of the other characters from whimsical companions to scheming agents of their own prosperity.

Such is the setting for the final series of the trilogy of Oz which has gone way off the script, while also going somewhat away from the whimsy of the setting.  Both the Warlord and Dorothy’s forces have decided that they have the advantage and have attacked one another.  Although seemingly outmatched Dorothy also seems oddly at ease with the mismatch as she thinks that she has her own advantage.  This plays out through a few different locales between both Dorothy and the evil witch, although more of the action focuses on Dorothy and the Warlord.

While this might not really feel like Oz, it equally does not mean that it is very bad either.  Going off the script is fine if the creative team has a grasp on where it is going, and although this is not really a natural progression of Baum’s story, it still makes enough sense from a story telling standpoint.  The second series in for Grimm Fairy Tales’ Oz was a lot more off the mark than this series, and while the denizens of Oz have never looked like this or acted like this, it is still an interesting enough tale with a couple of twists to keep things interesting.

Story: Jeff and Kristin Massey  Art: Antonio Bifulco
Story: 7.6  Art: 7.6 Overall: 7.6 Recommendation: Read

 

Review: Van Helsing Vs. Dracula #1

helsing001There is likely no villain as pervasive as Dracula.  He is maybe not the most intimidating of comic book super villains, but as a character borrowed from literature and history, he has shown up at practically every major comic company.  He is a big enough enemy of the X-Men at Marvel, has shown up occasionally at Marvel, and even in the past year has already been featured in his own miniseries, which he shared with the Blood Queen at Dynamite.  With such a wide swath of appearances, it makes sense that he would appear in Zenescope’s Grimm Fairy Tales, a setting which is established on the very concept of ripping off characters from myth, legend, fairy tales, and literature.  As the Grimm Fairy Tales universe expanded it also made sense to expand its list of heroes, most of whom happen to be female.  In this case a female vampire hunter by the name of Liesel Van Helsing, with a fair amount of steampunk, was thrown into the continuity, although the character has never really been able to find a solid home at the company, rather appearing in a sequence of cameos.  Perhaps this is on the verge of changing as she is featured in his first standalone miniseries, and one taking on the darkest creature of the night.

For those that are accustomed to Grimm Fairy Tales, they will find that there is something familiar here, but for those that are not they might be confused at some of the very basic concepts introduced here.  As the main universe of Grimm Fairy Tales tends to be pretty jumbled, often without a lot of direction, it should come as no surprise that a Victorian steampunk vampire hunter is dating Hades, the Greek god of the underworld.  For those that might like to look past this part, it is not really possible, as he is not here as a cameo, but rather as a major part of what is pushing forward the plot.  As it turns out, one of Liesel’s old friends has a bit of a vampire problem, and she is off to investigate it, with the god of the dead in tow.  Little does she know though that Hades and Dracula already have a history (which is a bit of a stretch even by Grimm Fairy Tales’ standards) and this complicates her goal of helping her friend.

It might seem that this issue is overly busy, but it never really is.  The inclusion of Hades is perhaps a poor choice, but it is an editorial choice that was made long ago, and the writer here has to deal with what they have.  Despite this, this is a hard issue to get an impression of for where the miniseries might be heading.  For those that are interested in a bit of supernatural, they will probably find this approachable enough, but there is really not much here to tell whether it will be one of the better Grimm Fairy Tales projects, or something more limited.  As it stands after the first issue it evidently has the potential, only it is unclear what it can make of it.

Story: Pat Shand Art: Michele Bandini 
Story: 7.6 Art: 7.6  Overall: 7.6  Recommendation: Read

 

Review: Wonderland #38

wonderland38aThere is one major difference between the stories of Wonderland and those of the remainder of Grimm Fairy Tales. The majority of Grimm Fairy Tales franchises tend to focus on one world entirely, not two at the same time, as series are either based in the real world, as with the main series, or in their own separate worlds, as with Oz, Neverland, The Jungle Book and others.  Wonderland is the series from all of them which takes a magical realm and shows the relevance of the real world on the events there and vice versa.   While recent issues have tended to focus on something closer to a fantasy element for the series, it has nonetheless still been rooted closely enough to the events of the real world, as Calie still struggles to find a place in both.

The story here is told as the Terror has escaped and as the Squire faces punishment for this escape.  While the events might have seemed to be restricted to Wonderland with the various plots being advanced by different characters, the action jumps back to the real world.  As Calie meets up with Drew again she realizes that the darkness from her realm has spread back to Earth, with the Terror and the Red Rabbit keen to exploit her human connections against her.  Meanwhile in Wonderland, the Squire finally begins to explain her own opinion on what could be happening to cause all of the malevolence.

This is a series that tends to balance somewhere between good and great, and while the past few issues could be said to be only good, this seems to be the return to something more for the series.  There is a bit more gore here than what has been seen recently, but it also adds weight to what has happened.  Certainly this story still has some distance to go before resolution, but the approach here is the one that has worked best for the series overall.  Some Earth and some Wonderland equals the best outcome for story telling here.

Story: Erica J. Heflin Art: Marc Rosete
Story: 9.1 Art: 9.1  Overall: 9.1  Recommendation: Buy

Review: Robyn Hood #13

robynhood013Zenescope’s third monthly series has been at times one which requires some patience to read.  Although it has exhibited some signs of fulfilling some of its underlying potential, it has too often reverted to its previous performance by providing issues that are full of concept bu short of execution.  The previous two issues seemed to have signaled a change in direction for this series, as both issues managed to carry a better story without losing touch with the characters that make the series compelling.  The previous two stories were standalones, and featured stories which were a bit further off the script of the usual for the series.  With the return to the usual format it remained to be seen exactly if the series had in fact made the jump to something better.

The story focuses not only on Robyn and Marian this time, but also on Liesel.  Since being introduced she is an underutilized character, probably second only to Britney Waters at Grimm Fairy Tales as a character that needs more panel time.  She is in town, and it happens to coincide with a supernatural serial killer making his mark on social media.  Although the setup would tend towards more of a mystery, it ends up in another bloodbath battle for the characters, which Liesel even alludes to as what should be expected, both in the story for the characters and for the readers.  Meanwhile Marian is dabbling in some risky magic to try to return herself to full strength.

It is perhaps not as bad as some of the stories that have come before, but this issue still represents a step back for the characters and the overall tone of the series.  The previous issues show what this series could be, but this issue shows mostly what is has been, a decent series at times, but also one that has never really escaped the realm of being average.  There is still some way to go with this series, and hopefully the creative team figures it out, because the characters do have a strong fanbase.  In the meantime, readers have to be happy enough with stories such as this one, entertaining at times, but not much else.

Story: Patrick Shand  Art: Roberta Ingranata
Story: 6.6  Art: 6.6  Overall:  6.6 Recommendation: Pass

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