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Z2 Comics and Jamie Hewlett Resurrect the Gorillaz Co-Founder’s Anarchic Comic in New Art Book, Phoo Action: Silver Jubilee

Following the releases of The Gorillaz Almanac and The Gorillaz Art BookZ2 Comics will once more collaborate with artist and design luminary Jamie Hewlett with Phoo Action: Silver Jubilee, a new oversized art book featuring the comic and show that serve as the kinetic missing link between Tank Girl and Gorillaz

Written and curated by Phoo Action co-author Mat Wakeham and featuring original designs by Hewlett, the book will present the full trajectory of what would become the cult sensation—from the Get the Freebies comic strip first presented in UK magazine The Face from 1996 to 1997, to the 2008 Phoo Action BBC pilot and beyond. 

Meticulously assembled by Wakeham with forewords that serve as an oral history of the evolving project, Phoo Action: Silver Jubilee shows the origins of Whitey Action, a cynical teen and potty-mouthed heroine, alongside Terry Phoo, a hapless kung-fu super cop. Born from counter-culture superhero chic and hyperactive pre-millennial angloism, the comic features the pair waging a two-person war against the mutant Freebies gang—led by an outlandish, hysterical crime boss with a basketball for a head.

For the first time, this book will collect the entirety of the 12-part Get the Freebies comic in English, alongside a cover piece from Hewlett—the first new official comic art of Terry and Whitey to celebrate their 25th anniversary. Phoo Action: Silver Jubilee will also include a never-before-seen introductory comic to a planned second season that was never produced, with a prose novel from Wakeham detailing the rest of the chapters. The novel will feature original illustrations from iconic comic artist Philip Bond. A treasure trove of unseen development and character artwork from Hewlett presents a definitive and exhaustive timeline of this underground masterpiece. 

Phoo Action: Silver Jubilee will come in a standard hardcover and deluxe hardcover with a clamshell cover. The deluxe hardcover will come with enamel pins, magnets, and embroidered patches. Phoo Action: Silver Jubilee will release in early Winter.

Preview: Eve Stranger Vol. 1

Eve Stranger Vol. 1

(W) David Barnett (A/CA) Philip Bond
In Shops: Jul 15, 2020
Final Orders Due: Jun 22, 2020
SRP: $17.99

You have unlimited funds, a jet-set lifestyle, and extraordinary abilities. So what happens when you develop a sneaking suspicion you’re working for the bad guys? Meet Eve Stranger, amnesiac for hire. Eve wakes up in a hotel room without knowing who she is or how she got there. Beside her is a teddy bear, a credit card, a briefcase of cash, a used syringe, and a letter in her own handwriting that explains her next mission. She’s living week by week, undertaking different, seemingly impossible tasks on behalf of a mystery benefactor. Her bloodstream is flooded with nanobombs, and the contents of the syringe deactivates them for one week and also wipes her memory. Because every Friday morning she wakes up with a clean slate and a new job, from black ops action/adventure hero to personal shopper, scuba treasure hunter to space station saboteur.

Eve Stranger Vol. 1

Preview: Eve Stranger Vol. 1

Eve Stranger Vol. 1

(W) David Barnett (A/CA) Philip Bond
In Shops: Jul 15, 2020
Final Orders Due: Jun 22, 2020
SRP: $17.99

You have unlimited funds, a jet-set lifestyle, and extraordinary abilities. So what happens when you develop a sneaking suspicion you’re working for the bad guys? Meet Eve Stranger, amnesiac for hire. Eve wakes up in a hotel room without knowing who she is or how she got there. Beside her is a teddy bear, a credit card, a briefcase of cash, a used syringe, and a letter in her own handwriting that explains her next mission. She’s living week by week, undertaking different, seemingly impossible tasks on behalf of a mystery benefactor. Her bloodstream is flooded with nanobombs, and the contents of the syringe deactivates them for one week and also wipes her memory. Because every Friday morning she wakes up with a clean slate and a new job, from black ops action/adventure hero to personal shopper, scuba treasure hunter to space station saboteur.

Eve Stranger Vol. 1

Preview: Eve Stranger #5 (of 5)

Eve Stranger #5 (of 5)

(W) David Barnett (A) Liz Prince (A/CA) Philip Bond
In Shops: Mar 25, 2020
SRP: $3.99

After her crisis of faith, Eve wants out of the job. But how can she do that, when she has nanobombs in her blood and her life -literally and physically!-depends on completing every mission to earn the deactivating serum? Her latest mission takes her back to Iceland, her home turf, and this time it’s extra personal. Eve might be down, but she’s not out… can she see this through with a little help from some very strange friends? Find out in the explosive conclusion to EVE STRANGER: RETROGRADE.

Eve Stranger #5 (of 5)

Preview: Eve Stranger #3

Eve Stranger #3

David Barnett (w) • Philip Bond (a & c)

Eve’s latest need-to-know mission takes her to Prague, the Bohemian capital, where a giant ape is terrorizing the historic city. But that’s all right, because everyone’s favorite amnesiac-for-hire has finally scored a jetpack. As Jimmy Mac, Eve’s lovelorn clean-up crew, tries to get her attention, Eve learns that this monkey business might somehow give her answers about her forgotten past. Plus a backup feature starring Eve Stranger, social correspondent of The Convivial Times, by Liz Prince (Tomboy).

FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Eve Stranger #3

Preview: Eve Stranger #2

Eve Stranger #2

David Barnett (w) • Philip Bond (a & c)

Eve Stranger can do anything thanks to the nanotech that she has to inject every week to stay alive… anything except remember who she is or where she’s been. Her talents sold by the shadowy E.V.E. Project to the highest bidder, Eve’s latest mission finds her on the run in Pamplona, Spain. High-octane adventure, weird science, and doomed romance meet the jet-set in “Retrograde”!

FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Eve Stranger #2

Review: Eve Stranger #1

Eve Stranger #1

The premise of David Barnett, Philip Bond, and Eva de la Cruz’s Eve Stranger #1 is basically “What if Jason Bourne was a girl with blue hair?” There’s also a little bit of Luc Besson’s “tiny girl assassin with one name kicks ass” in its DNA. This first issue follows the amnesiac Eve as she goes forward with her first “mission” that involves traveling to hotels, saving kids from human traffickers, and lots of sad, but cute childhood flashbacks. With occasional digressions to show how Eve’s blood is basically a commodity, Barnett keeps the plotting linear, yet mysterious like Eve Stranger’s past. And it’s all contradicted by his and Liz Prince’s backup story, which seems like a joke/cheeky political satire, but is it?

The real highlight of Eve Stranger #1 is Philip Bond’s artwork complemented by bright pops of blue and yellow from Eva de la Cruz to add intrigue and action to the hum drum of modern living. Bond worked on Deadline in the 1990s with Jamie Hewlett of Tank Girl and Gorillaz and collaborated on Grant Morrison classics like Kill Your Boyfriend and Invisibles. His style is a hybrid between the smooth lines of Frank Quitely and Hewlett’s cartoon anarchy. It works well for a slick spy caper with just the hint of attitude as Eve isn’t a monosyllabic Bourne or Terminator and beams with glee when she buys yet another Rolls Royce motorcycle.

Bond has a real gift for crafting cool action moments like when Eve kicks the room service attendant right in the tray after lazing in bed for the previous few pages or the bit of gunplay that goes down later in the issue. But he and David Barnett don’t skimp on the emotion creating a connection between Eve and her real (?) dad that continues throughout the comic. Any time, Eve sees a child, there is a flashback to her childhood with her dad and a group of kids that were probably trained to be assassins too. It’s a quick visual reminder that Eve is a teenager and not just a weapon, and the use of Herge Tintin eyes on the kid characters allows for the reader to identify with them..

And the teenage part especially shines in Barnett and Prince’s backup story to Eve Stranger #1 whose ending leads into the beginning of the issue and gets a wee bit meta with references to other Black Crown stories. It’s a sweet story about Eve as a girl reporter, who because she can only observe events and can’t interfere, has to wait for sexy shirtless fireman to rescue her elderly neighbor’s cat. Prince has a cute, humorous art style with big gestures and faces that lulls you into a false sense of security while Barnett makes the connection to the main story.

Eve Stranger #1’s story is a tad derivative of the action movies that I mentioned in the first paragraph, but David Barnett and Philip Bond seem to be just as concerned with their protagonist’s emotion and quest for autonomy as showing her doing cool things. Plus the art and colors are stylish, distinct, and the opposite of house style, which has been one of the strengths of the Black Crown imprint as a whole.

Story: David Barnett Art: Philip Bond
Colors: Eva de la Cruz Letters: Jane Heir
Backup Art: Liz Prince
Story:7 Art: 9 Overall: 7.7 Recommendation: Read

IDW/Black Crown provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Eve Stranger #1

Eve Stranger #1

David Barnett (w) • Philip Bond (a & c)

You have unlimited funds, a jet-set lifestyle, and extraordinary abilities. And your bloodstream is filled with nanobombs. The contents of a syringe will deactivate them for a week and also wipe your memory. So what happens when you develop a sneaking suspicion that you’re actually working for the bad guys? EVE STRANGER, amnesiac-for-hire.

FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Eve Stranger #1

Preview: Femme Magnifique: 10 Magnificent Women Who Changed the World

Femme Magnifique: 10 Magnificent Women Who Changed the World

Just in time for Women’s History Month, we’ve curated a one-shot selection of short stories from the critically acclaimed anthology, FEMME MAGNIFIQUE: 50 Magnificent Women Who Changed the World. Part mini-biopic, part salute to their personal icons, the subjects and creative teams include:

  • MARGARET HAMILTON by Alisa Kwitney & Jamie Coe
  • SYLVIA EARLE by Maris Wicks
  • KATE BUSH by Gail Simone & Marguerite Sauvage
  • MARGARET SANGER by Lucy Knisley
  • HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON by Kelly Sue DeConnick & Elsa Charretier
  • CINDY WHITEHEAD by Jim Rugg
  • MARY BLAIR by Casey Gilly & Jen Hickman
  • HARRIET TUBMAN by Chuck Brown & Sanford Greene
  • RUMIKO TAKAHASHI by Chynna Clugston-Flores
  • SALLY RIDE by Cecil Castellucci & Philip Bond

From artists to astronauts, from performance halls to the Skateboard Hall of Fame, the magnificent women featured in this single issue have one thing in common: they’ve shattered ceilings and continue to empower, educate, and promote equality.

FC • 36 pages • $4.99

Femme Magnifique: 10 Magnificent Women Who Changed the World

IDW’s Black Crown Imprint Sets Its Sights on Eve Stranger, Amnesiac-for-Hire

Writer David Barnett and artist Philip Bond debut the ultimate undercover operator in Eve Stranger, a five-issue miniseries brought to you by Black Crown, IDW’s creator-owned imprint for fiercely independent voices.

Launching in April, Eve Stranger follows a formidable young woman with unnatural abilities and a repeatedly wiped memory, available to the highest bidder under the threat of exploding nanobombs in her bloodstream.

Eve Stranger
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