In anticipation of Comic-Con International 2014, Archie Comics' recently-revealed Dark Circle Comics superhero line has announced the first three titles in its 2015 lineup. Among the first books in the Dark Circle line are Duane Swierczynski and Michael Gaydos' "The Black Hood" that re-envisions the character as an urban vigilante; Adam Christopher and Chuck Wendig's "The Shield," which features a new female version of the character designed by Wilfredo Torres; and a second volume of Mark Waid and Dean Haspiel's "The Fox," "Fox Hunt."
"Duane and Michael are concocting a gritty, noir crime thriller that presents the Black Hood as the true urban vigilante he was meant to be," line editor Alex Segura said via press release. "Chuck, Adam and Wilfredo are introducing a new Shield that will stand tall as the latest and best incarnation of the character - and she's not to be messed with. A true super hero action-adventure that brings to mind the scope and grandeur of some of the best comic books have to offer. Plus, another dose of 'The Fox' from Haspiel and Waid, two ofÂ comicdom'sÂ mad scientists bringing their absolute A-game to the newly-minted ongoing series. Readers are in for a treat, and I only wish they could see the art and stories come in as quickly as I do. It's going to be a fun ride."
More details on each series were revealed by USA Today, including quotes from each of the series' creators. "The Black Hood" will kick off with "The Bullet's Kiss," introducing Philly cop Greg Hettinger, who gets shot in the face during the opening scenes.
"When I pitched my idea for the series, I intentionally went way dark, figuring they'd either tell me to scale it back, or give me a polite pat on the head and tell me to go away," Swierczynski told USA Today. "To my happy surprise, Alex and the gang embraced the darkness."
For "The Shield," series co-writer Adam Christopher describes the newest character to take on the mantle as "a very powerful, very modern female superhero. And I think that's something to celebrate."
"We've got one of the scariest bad guys, one of the coolest good guys and a whole host of supporting characters," he said.
As for "The Fox," "Fox Hunt" will continue the story that Waid and Haspiel began in the first volume, following the story of Paul Patton Jr.
Tthere is no world in which it makes any sense not to come to the table when Dean Haspiel invites you," Waid said. "As much fun as our first outing on 'The Fox' was, this is even crazier and more adventurous. It's grim without being dark, it's fun without being childish -- it's flat-out action-adventure meant purely to entertain."
Check out a selection of art from each of the series below.