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Ablaze Reveals its September Comic, Manga, and Graphic Novel Releases

HE WHO FIGHTS WITH MONSTERS #1

by Francesco Artibani & Werther Dell’Edera
MSRP: $3.99 · Release Date: September 7, 2021

On All Hallows’ Eve, a community struggles under the boot of the Nazi war machine when supernatural forces come to play a part in the conflict! From the artist of the bestselling Something is Killing the Children comes a Halloween tale that will send shivers up your spine…

World War 2 is raging and the struggle between good and evil is in full force. In Prague, the great Bohemian city is being oppressed by the Nazi occupation and the population lives in terror, while the resistance forces try to organize themselves in the shadows.  It is an almost impossible task. With the ruthless SS tightening their grip on every street and neighborhood with overwhelming might, only one hope feeds the struggle. A crazy hope, which rests on the fragile foundations of an ancient, monstrous legend…

HE WHO FIGHTS WITH MONSTERS #1

CRUELER THAN DEAD Vol. 1

by Tsukasa Saimura & Kozo Takahashi
MSRP: $12.99 · Release Date: September 29, 2021

Crueler Than Dead features fast paced and extremely graphic violence concealing none of the absolute horror…and requiring a strong heart and stomach!

No one knows where it started…but when the world finally realized what was going on, it was already too late.

When Maki Akagi wakes up in a lab full of corpses, she learns from a dying soldier that she is the result of a last-ditch experiment to cure humans of a virus turning them into zombies. Accompanied by a young boy who also miraculously escaped, she will have to try to get to the very center of a devastated Tokyo filled with bloodthirsty monsters. The dome located there contains the last survivors of mankind. And humanity’s very survival depends solely on a few drops of this miraculous vaccine…

Inspired by Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira), The Walking Dead, Romero classics, and new zombie films like 28 Days LaterCrueler Than Dead delights in the meticulous gory details of decomposed flesh, with a wicked and hungry eye…evoking a modern vision of a zombie world that is terrifying, tension filled and unsettling!

CRUELER THAN DEAD Vol. 1

MONSTERMIND: DEALING WITH ANXIETY & SELF DOUBT

by Alfonso Casas
MSRP: $19.99 · Release Date: September 29, 2021

Alfonso Casas’s MonsterMind is a very personal account of the inner monsters that live inside his head. But who doesn’t have a monster inside them?

Who has never heard that voice inside their head undermining everything they do? You’re not good enough…You just got really lucky…There are people far better and more qualified than you…

In a very honest exercise, Alfonso Casas identifies and introduces his own monsters to his readers: Mr. Past Traumas, Mr. Fear, Mr. Social Anxiety, Mr. Impostor Syndrome, Mr. Sadness, Mr. Doubt…the pessimistic, the insecure, the self-demanding, the monster that keeps you from sleeping while you think of what you could have said back in that conversation two years ago, or that keeps you looking over the punctuation of every text message to figure out the tone lurking beneath the surface. All those monsters make up the bestiary of contemporary society.

But the anxiety generation is expert in more things: in looking inside themselves and their lives, and – why not? – in laughing at their own neuroses as best they can. In the end, if the monsters won’t leave us, we might as well get to know them and laugh at them! Anxiety is another pandemic, but the monsters dwelling inside us are funny, too (especially as drawn by Alfonso Casas).

BONUS:  Includes a discussion guide to help readers further discuss anxiety and find ways to deal with it.

MONSTERMIND: DEALING WITH ANXIETY & SELF DOUBT

TRESE Vol. 3

by Budjette Tan & KaJO Baldisimo
MSRP: $16.99 · Release Date: September 29, 2021

The award-winning supernatural crime thriller by Filipino creators Budjette Tan and KaJO Baldisimo continues. Trese Vol. 3 “Mass Murders” contains 5 stories from the case files of Alexandra Trese

It’s 12 midnight in Metro Manila. Try to remain calm as you walk down the dimly lit streets. If you are suddenly surrounded by a pack of dogs that appear from nowhere – these might be segben tracking down their prey. Avoid the butcher’s shop that’s open at this hour. It might be a front for a gang of vampiric aswang (shape-shifting evil creatures of Filipino folklore).

Yet, there’s an even deadlier threat to the city tonight. An ancient being that thrives on violence and thirsts for blood has found new disciples in modern Manila. Sacrifice has been demanded. Rituals must be executed. When crime takes a turn for the weird, the police call Trese.

TRESE Vol. 3

Anime Expo Lite 2021 Announces TRESE VOD Panel

Trese

Anime Expo Lite 2021 explores the animated action-packed supernatural crime thriller, TRESE in a special creator panel available as part of the convention’s expanded VOD programming available starting July 5, 2021, at 12:00 PM (PST) and running thru July 16th, 2021.

A love letter to the traditions, heritage, and culture of the Philippines, TRESE follows detective Alexandra Trese as she confronts a criminal underworld composed of malevolent supernatural beings. The series is set in Manila where the mythical creatures of Philippine folklore live in hiding amongst humans.

Hosted by ABLAZE publishing, which publishes the TRESE graphic novel series, the panel will include Trese’s original graphic novel creators Budjette Tan (Writer) and KaJO Baldisimo (Artist), as well as Jay Oliva, the Executive Producer, Director & Showrunner of Netflix’s TRESE, and Rich Young, the co-founder of ABLAZE.

Tickets to access this year’s Anime Expo Lite programming are $5 each, with all proceeds benefiting the Hate Is A Virus commUNITY Action Fund. After the stream concludes on July 4th, ticketholders can re-watch the content, as well as access additional programming, on a VOD basis from July 5th-16th, 2021.

Anime Expo Lite 2021 marks the 30th Anniversary of the long-running annual convention. Anime Expo is the biggest North American fan celebration for Japanese pop culture including anime, TV & film, fashion, video games, manga, dance, live concerts, collectibles, and exclusive convention merchandise, presented as an unforgettable experience for fans of all ages.

Registration information:

• Dates – July 3-4, 2021 / 12pm – 8pm (PST)
Ticket Registration
• Registration $5 (+ processing fees) – all proceeds to benefit the Hate Is a Virus commUNITY Action Fund

Trese

TRESE Volume 1: Murder on Balete Drive TP is Going Back to Print

Ablaze has announced that Budjette Tan and Kajo Baldisimo‘s TRESE Volume 1: Murder on Balete Drive has sold out at Diamond and is going back to print.

The comic series has been turned into an anime series which premieres on Netflix this Friday, June 11.

With TRESE Volume 1’s second printing, and TRESE Volume 2: Unreported Murders hitting shelves soon, fans will have just enough time to get caught up on the supernatural mysteries steeped heavily in Filipino mythology before the upcoming Netflix’s anime launches June 11th. The series, helmed by Jay Oliva, director of Batman: The Dark Knight Returns (2013) and Justice League Dark (2017), features Pretty Little Liars star, Shay Mitchell, as the voice of Alexandra Trese in English, and Liza Soberano (My Ex and Whys, Alone/Together) in Filipino.

Review: Trese Vol 1: Murder on Balete Drive

Trese Vol 1: Murder on Balete Drive

As the son of a Filipino mother, there are givens. One of those givens is that we go to church every Sunday and those extra days during Easter. Another given is that rice is part of your daily food intake, no matter what. Then there are those things that outsiders may look at like it is bizarre.

One such thing is the Filipino belief in supernatural creatures. For outsiders, it looks contradictory to believe in God but also believe in otherworldly beings. Faith is to believe in something even if you can’t see it. In the first volume of Budjette Tan and Kajo Baldisimo’s Trese, they introduce to a world where they don’t live in the margins but very much in the open.

In the first tale, “ At  The Intersection of  Balte and 13th Street” we are taken to modern-day Manila, where a young lady has been found murdered, but not other Jane Doe, as she had been for more than 60 years. Because of the peculiarity of the case, Detective Alexandra Trese is called to the scene, an inspector who deals with supernatural creatures. As she starts her fact-finding mission, leading her to inspect the spectre of a “White Lady”, while questioning  Nuno (underground dwellers) and  Aswang( vampires) along the way, leading to even more puzzling questions. In the second tale, a car accident leads Trese to a Tikbalang (mythical horse) whose thirst for racing gets him outwitted by Alexandra. In the third tale,” The Tragic Case of Dr. Burgos”, where a Santelmo( fire elemental) becomes far too gone in their hopeless romanticism of a long-dead spouse. In the last story, “Our Secret Constellation”, one sibling uses the powers of a deity to carry out a mission of retribution, so that his sister didn’t have to become who she actually is, the goddess, Bathala.

Overall, Trese Vol 1: Murder on Balete Drive is a dense, well-written story that showcases to the world, the talents of Tan and Baldisimo. The stories by Tan are engaging and suspenseful. The art by Baldisimo is awe-inspiring. Altogether, a great introduction to a series that will soon become a Netflix show.

Story: Budjette Tan Art: Kajo Baldisimo
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy


Purchase: comiXologyAmazonKindleBookshop

Darren Criss, Manny Jacinto join Shay Mitchell in cast of Netflix Original Anime Series Trese

Netflix has released the official trailer for Trese, the highly anticipated Netflix Original Anime series based on the Philippine graphic novel created by Budjette Tan and KaJO Baldisimo, premiering on Netflix June 11, 2021. Netflix also revealed the English language and Filipino language voice cast of Trese.

Darren Criss (The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story), Jon Jon Briones (Ratched), Nicole Scherzinger (Moana), Manny Jacinto (The Good Place), Lou Diamond Phillips (La Bamba) and Dante Basco (Avatar: The Last Airbender) join Shay Mitchell (YOU, Pretty Little Liars), previously announced as the voice of Alexandra Trese in the English language version.

Filipino actress Liza Soberano (My Ex and Whys, Alone/Together) will voice Alexandra Trese in the Filipino language version of the series, and will be joined by local professional voice talents Simon dela Cruz (as Crispin and Basilio), Apollo Abraham (Captain Guerrero), Christopher Carlo Caling (Hank), Christian Velarde (Nuno), and Eugene Adalia (Anton Trese). Well-respected Filipino Language Voice Artist Director Rudolf Baldonado will direct the local voice talents.

English language voice cast:

  • Shay Mitchell – Alexandra Trese
  • Griffin Puatu – The Kambal (Crispin and Basilio), Bantay
  • Matt Yang King – Captain Guerrero, Dominic
  • Jon Jon Briones – Hank, Xa-Mul
  • Steve Blum – Datu Talagbusao, Ibwa
  • Carlos Alazraqui – Anton Trese, Santelmo
  • Manny Jacinto – Maliksi
  • Eric Bauza – Nuno the Snitch, Bagyon Lektro
  • Darren Criss – Marco
  • Nicole Scherzinger – Miranda Trese
  • Lou Diamond Phillips – Mayor Sancho Santamaria
  • Dante Basco – Bagyon Kulimlim
  • Rodney To – Aswang market guard, Man in drag

Filipino language voice cast:

  • Liza Soberano – Alexandra Trese
  • Simon dela Cruz – The Kambal (Crispin and Basilio)
  • Apollo Abraham – Captain Guerrero
  • Christopher Carlo Caling – Hank
  • Eugene Adalia – Anton Trese
  • Cheska Aguiluz – Miranda Trese
  • Christian Velarde – Nuno
  • Bryan Encarnacion – Datu Talagbusao
  • Nica Rojo – Ramona
  • Jo Anne Orobia-Chua – Emissary
  • Jose Amado Santiago – Marco
  • Steve dela Cruz – Maliksi
  • Rene Tandoc – Mayor Santamaria
  • Steffi Graf Bontogon-Mola – Young, Teen Alexandra
  • RJ Celdran – Santelmo, Señor Armanaz
  • Elyrey Martin – Ibwa, Dominic
  • Steven Bontogon – Jobert

Set in a Manila where the mythical creatures of Philippine folklore live in hiding amongst humans, Alexandra Trese finds herself going head to head with a criminal underworld comprised of malevolent supernatural beings.

Comics Deserve Better Episode 17: The Book Tour by Andi Watson

After a week off for Thanksgiving, Brian, Darci, and Logan are back to talk about indie comics. They discuss the announcement of the upcoming Houghton Mifflin graphic novel The Worst Ronin, the remastering of Mike Grell‘s legendary Jon Sable, Freelance series. and maybe dig into yaoi manga a little bit too much. Then, they chat about Andi Watson‘s 2020 comic The Book Tour, the black and white saga of an author who can’t sell a single copy of his book and keeps getting put up in worse and worse hotels and ends up in a quite conundrum and wrap up things up by mentioning what they’re thankful for in 2020. Other comics mentioned on the show include A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, Fake, I Walk with Monsters, Lumberjanes: End of Summer, Trese, and Kill A Man.

(Episode art by Andi Watson)

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