SDCC ’09 | 15 announcements that make us happy

by  in Comic News Comment
SDCC ’09 | 15 announcements that make us happy

San Diego Comic-Con is always a wild ride filled with crazy cosplayers, Hollywood hype and just generally somewhat-controlled chaos. In the midst of it all, a few comic book announcements managed to sneak out.

Here are 15 of those announcements (in no particular order) that Kevin Melrose, Chris Mautner and I were happy to hear:

1. New Bone books
So it looks like one of those new books isn’t going to be comics but a novel written by Tom Sniegoski and illustrated by Smith. Which is a bit of a bummer, but only a bit. I’m still pretty psyched to see more stories set in that universe and Sniegoski has proven himself to be an able and witty writer on stuff like the Stupid Stupid Rat Creatures mini series, which, by the way, will be included in the Tall Tales book. So yeah, this is great news all around. I’m eager for more Bone. –Chris Mautner

2. Petrograd, by Philip Gelatt and Tyler Crook
I piped up the moment JK Parkin posted his interview on Thursday with Petrograd writer Philip Gelatt. The book, which examines the events surrounding the murder of Grigori Rasputin in 1916, hits the right historical note with me, of course. But it was the art by Tyler Crook that really drew me in. Beautiful stuff, that. Plus, it doesn’t hurt — in my book, at least — that Gelatt is taking a factual approach to the life, and death, of the Mad Monk. –Kevin Melrose

3. Kurt Busiek’s Wildstorm titles
Fresh off the weekly Trinity series, Kurt Busiek had two announcements on Saturday at the Wildstorm panel. First, Astro City is going monthly. After wrapping up the Dark Age tales he’s been telling in various mini-series over the last few years, and doing an Astra two-parter and a Silver Agent special, Busiek will pick the Astro City monthly series back up with issue #23. Brent Anderson is still on board for the art, with Alex Ross on covers.

But that’s not all. Busiek also has a brand new title called Kurt Busiek’s American Gothic, featuring artwork by Connor Willumsen. It’s an ongoing due sometime next year, and will feature tales of American mythology — truck drivers driving the dead to their final resting place, fishing village residents finding Thor living on an island off the coast of Rhode Island, that sort of stuff. I also understand Busiek will be writing some prose to go along with it.

More Busiek is always a good thing, and more of Busiek doing his own stuff is a really great thing. –JK Parkin

4. Blacksad from Dark Horse
If you were to only read a description of Blacksad, the French-published, award-winning series by Juan Díaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido, you might discount it as silly. I mean, a noirish crime comic set in 1950s America and starring a cast of anthropomorphized animals? But one glimpse of Guarnido’s lush, moody and, yes, realistic art immediately wipes away any doubts about the premise. Of Blacksad‘s three volumes — Somewhere Within the Shadows, Arctic Nation and Red Soul — only the first two have been translated into English because of the bankruptcy of the previous North American rights-holder. Dark Horse plans to remedy that. — Kevin Melrose

5. Daniel Clowes’ Wilson
His stint for The New York Times Magazine aside, we haven’t had any new comics from Dan Clowes in a dog’s age. It’s not like he’s the speediest of cartoonists or anything. So the news that he is in fact working on a new graphic novel and that it will be out in less than a year from now is excellent news. Sure to be the most talked about book in 2010. –Chris Mautner

6. The Killjoys, by Gerard Way, Shaun Simon and Becky Cloonan
Gerard Way proved with his work on Umbrella Academy that not only does he know how to make comics, but he knows how to make them fun, engaging and a little bit twisted. “If Umbrella Academy is me taking a look at, among many other things, Doom Patrol, Killjoys is me, with my co-writer Shaun Simon, taking a look at when the best stuff was going on in the ’90s, things like Invisibles and stuff like that,” he told Comic Book Resources.

Of course, it also really, really helps that Becky Cloonan is drawing it. That’s worth the price of admission right there. –JK Parkin

7. 6th Gun, by Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt
As I mentioned on Saturday, I’m an easy mark when it comes to supernatural stories in a historical setting. So I immediately took notice when Oni Press released promotional art for 6th Gun, the new project from The Damned team of Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt. According to CBR’s panel report, 6th Gun is a fantasy/Western that “follows the story of six terrible handguns and how one falls into the hands of an innocent girl.” Sold! — Kevin Melrose

8. The Anchor by Phil Hester and Brian Churilla
“God’s own leg breaker.” Coming from BOOM! Studios, this new title details the main character’s fight to keep demons and monsters from spilling out of hell and onto the Earth. Or, in the words of BOOM! CEO Ross Richie, “Monsters get punched.” This seems a bit different from what you’d typically expect from BOOM!, and I’m looking forward to seeing more of it. — JK Parkin

9. Complete Nancy from Fantagraphics
I’m pretty much a neophyte when it comes to Nancy. I’ve read slivers of the strip here and there but not enough to really get a feel for it, apart from the fact that it’s a bit … off-kilter. A lot of people seem to really worship it however, so I’ll be sure to be checking out this collection to see if I agree with the comics cognoscenti or not. –Chris Mautner

10. Revolver by Matt Kindt
Matt Kindt, creator of Super Spy, makes this graphic novel must reading already. And the description, courtesy of Graphic Content, sounds like a lot of fun and something that’s right up his alley:

Sam, a 20-something living in Seattle, wakes up one morning to a world where things are out of control—the stock market has crashed, there’s a bird-flu epidemic in Asia and radioactive material has gone missing in Russia. Next, Sam wakes up and the world is fine. REVOLVER, written and illustrated by Eisner Award nominated Matt Kindt, is a tale of two realities and how they both test Sam’s limits until he makes a move that changes his path forever.

Vertigo has announced several new titles recently I’m really looking forward to — I, Zombie, Sweet Tooth — and this is one more for the buy pile. –JK Parkin

11. Furry Water, by Rafael Grampá and Daniel Pellizzari
I’ve been banging the drum for Furry Water from the moment Rafael Grampá posted the first character sketch on his blog in early June. Almost two months have passed and I still don’t know much about the six-issue Dark Horse miniseries, other than it centers on five weapons-wielding brothers in a postapocalyptic setting. That’s not much to go on, but I enjoyed Grampá’s previous work Mesmo Delivery (which Dark Horse will re-release), and I’m a big fan of his artwork. That’s enough to convince me to go along for the ride. –Kevin Melrose

12. Don Rosa’s Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck in hardcover
This is a good thing because a) my paperback copy is falling apart; and b) it suggests that BOOM! has a real interest in making sure that Rosa’s (and by extension Carl Barks’) work remains out in the public eye. I’m hoping that this is merely the beginning of more good things to come, duck-wise that is. –Chris Mautner

13. Deathlok by Charlie Huston
This announcement may have gone under the radar a bit, as it was made at the Cup ‘o Joe panel where Marvel’s big Marvelman announcement was made. While I’m not sure what to feel about that announcement until we know exactly what Marvel’s plans are — if the Moore and Gaiman stories end up back in print, then I reserve the right to update this list at a later date — I do know that I’m happy about the new Charlie Huston/Lan Medina Deathlok series that was announced.

What can I say? Ever since I first saw him in the pages of Captain America, I’ve always liked Deathlok. –JK Parkin

14. The serialization of Bakuman in Shonen Jump
I’m not typically a fan of the metafictional self-absorption that typically accompanies authors penning stories starring authors who struggle with writer’s block, fame, fandom, what have you (sorry, Stephen King fans). It’s just a little … much. However, I’ll make an exception for Bakuman, which follows two ninth-grade boys who dream of becoming mangaka. That’s because it’s by Death Note creators Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata, who get as much leeway as they want went it comes to subject matter. — Kevin Melrose

15. The Scott Pilgrim video game
Seriously, how can you not want to play this? –Chris Mautner