A lively crowed greeted BOOM! Studios staff and creators Saturday at New York Comic Con as they opened their panel to announce new releases, discuss ongoing projects, and field questions from fans. They also premiered exclusive art from the eagerly anticipated new miniseries, “Adventure Time with Fionna and Cake!”
BOOM! Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon welcomed Managing Editor Bryce Carlson, VP of Publishing and Marketing Filip Sablik and “Supurbia” writer Grace Randolph to their panel at NYCC. Gagnon wasted no time confirming the popular gender-flipped episode of Cartoon Network’s “Adventure Time” would lead to a miniseries using the same premise, written and drawn by Natasha Allegri. The six-issue miniseries premieres in January 2013, and is the first of many “Adventure Time” surprises coming from BOOM!
Gagnon touched on “Deathmatch”, a new project from Paul Jenkins and Carlos Magno. Thirty-two super-powered people, heroes and villains, wake up in a prison. At set intervals, two prisoners are plucked from their cells and placed into an arena in which they must battle to the death. “Paul Jenkins is known for the pathos and the drama that he brings to his characters,” said Gagnon. “Along with the action and thrills will come high drama.
“In ordinary comics, you can see a character die, and he’s back a few issues later. In ‘Deathmatch,’ every death is permanent. There will be characters we love, and we’ll have to kill them until only one remains,” Gagnon continued.
On sale in a few short weeks, “Freelancers” hits stores October 31st and follows a pair of female bounty hunters well versed in kung fu. Writer Ian Brill and artist Josh Covey will provide “lots of martial arts and shenanigans, for those of you who like shenanigans,” said Gagnon.
Coming soon from Pendleton Ward, creator of “Adventure Time” is a new series, “Bravest Warriors”. It stars a team of young adventurers who save the universe with their emotions. The show will appear on Cartoon Hangover, a new Youtube channel. While Ward’s animated series won’t begin until November, the first issue of BOOM!’s comic book, written by “A Softer World’s” Joey Comeau with art by Mike Holmes, goes on sale October 24.
Grace Randolph’s “smart, scandalous, salacious” “Supurbia” begins November 7 as an ongoing series. A trade paperback collection of the initial miniseries will be released the same day. The first story arc of this soap-opera-based superhero book focusing on the loved ones of the world’s greatest superhero team will involve Hella Heart, the semi-reformed super villainess who is “shacking up” with hero Sovereign.
Steven Grant’s “Two Guns” series from 2008 is getting the Hollywood treatment with a feature film starring Denzel Washington, Mark Wahlberg and Bill Paxton, directed by Baltasar Kormakur. The movie is currently scheduled for an August 2013 release. “We’ve actually been able to stay really involved in the project and keep it true to the comic,” Gagnon said. An expanded version of the series will be released as a new trade paperback in May.
Touching on “Garfield,” Gagnon noted Issue #9 will feature a variant cover by “Mad Magazine” great Al Jaffee, as previously reported on CBR.
Following the conclusion of the slide show, Gagnon opened up the floor for questions. The first inquired about the possibility of more “Darkwing Duck” comics, but Gagnon said there were currently none in the works.
An “Adventure Time” fan wanted to know how much involvement Pendleton Ward has in the comic books. “He’s really involved,” Gagnon said. “He sees everything we publish and he’s the most supportive advocate we have.” The BOOM! staff had several fans of “Adventure Time” in their offices and reached out to Cartoon Network about doing a comic book version of the series. “Cartoon Network likes the comics we do, and we were able to make a deal,” Gagnon said of how BOOM! obtained the “Adventure Time” license.
A reader asked if the comic book version of “Adventure Time” would explore the nuclear war backstory. Gagnon said the creators were having fun playing in the “Adventure Time” world as it is, but “Anything can happen in ‘Adventure Time,’ so don’t write anything off.”
One fan wanted to know if stalwart BOOM! writer Does Michael Alan Nelson has any new projects coming up at the publisher. There are plans, but nothing the panelists could announce.
An aspiring comic book artist asked about the publisher’s talent submissions. The best way to send work to BOOM! is through their message boards. All work is seen, and it’s not uncommon for artists to be hired directly front them.
Another fan asked Randolph if she was doing anything new outside of the ongoing “Supurbia.” “Right now I’m just working on doing the best book I possibly can,” Randolph said. The writer will be taking “Supurbia” characters to exciting new places, and trying to keep things fresh as she focuses on the one title.
Since BOOM! holds the license to writer Clive Barker’s “Hellraiser,” one fan wanted to know about a possible adaptation of the horror icon’s “Scarlet Diaries.” “Keep your eat out,” Gagnon said. There are no plays yet, but there are ongoing discussions with Barker.
Since writer Mark Evanier recently re-introduced Lyman, a character from the very early days of the “Garfield” comic strip, in the animated series, “The Garfield Show,” a fan asked if there were plans for him to appear in the “Garfield” comic also written by Evanier. Gagnon said, “Not at this time,” but they’re in contact with Evanier all the time, so there is a possibility it could happen.
Another reader wanted to know if BOOM! had any more books based on Cartoon Network properties beyond “Adventure Time.” While they would love to do more, nothing is ready to announce right now.