'Jingle Bell: Dash Away All' original graphic novel coming from Oni

Official Press Release

A new Jingle Belle book for Christmas has become an annual tradition for series creator Paul Dini and publisher Oni Press. This year, we're going the full-length route and releasing the new tale, DASH AWAY ALL, as an original graphic novel. Illustrated by Jose Garibaldi (MARIA'S WEDDING), DASH AWAY ALL sees our heroine once more running afoul of her father's arch nemesis, the Blizzard Wizard. Only this time the Wiz has brought his nefarious niece, Heidi Hoarfrost, and their plot to wipe out Yuletide cheer by putting Santa Claus and his reindeer in their sickbeds nearly succeeds-but nobody figured that Jing could get her own crew together in time to scurry across the globe. Can she deliver the gifts on time?

"This is the big Jingle Belle story I've been wanting to tell for some time." Dini says. "The one that takes the whole concept of what it means to be Santa's teen-aged daughter back to its roots and shows how that can be a mixed blessing at best. For the first time Jing has to take on Santa's job herself, a task she's never been thrilled about to begin with, and she's got to rely on her own 'dirty almost dozen' of oddball Arctic animals to help her. While she has her loyal musk ox and blue fox pets along for support, Jing also has to deal with such personalities as a motor-mouthed hare, a narcissistic narwhal and a wiseguy wolverine on her team. And making matters worse, one of the critters is a traitor sent by the villain to make sure Jing doesn't finish the mission. There's a lot of action, comedy and even a bit of heart in this one. It is, in many ways, the definitive Jingle Belle story."

"The JINGLE BELLE books are always a blast to put together," said Oni Press editor in chief Jamie S. Rich. "Having the name Paul Dini above the title pretty much assures our choice of a gajillion spectacular artists who want to collaborate with one of the finest comic book storytellers of our time. Following folks like J. Bone and Stephen DeStefano, Jose Garibaldi has some pretty big inkwells to fill. Yet, he's such a mad genius in his own right, I can't imagine doing DASH AWAY ALL any other way."

"James and Jamie at Oni sent me Jose's samples, and I was immediately blown away," Dini elaborated. "He had done some of his own comic strip, TEEN HEAVEN, for the Oni website, and the character designs were inventive and fun. He was also knee-deep in MARIA'S WEDDING, which was a completely different style entirely. He's a writer's dream, because he seems able to tackle anything I toss at him."

As an added bonus, JINGLE BELLE: DASH AWAY ALL will feature an extra story co-written by Dini and David Mandel, a hilarious writer who has worked on SEINFELD and the animated CLERKS series. "David had a hysterical idea and we've been threatening to do it for a while," Dini explained. "Basically, he asked what Jing might think of Chanukah, given that it's the 'other' December holiday. The story, set some years in the past, shows what happened when Jing met the Festival of Lights for the first time. Dave and I collaborated on the script, and I think everyone who celebrates Christmas or Chanukah or both will be suitably amused and offended."

Those unfamiliar with Dini's character can visit her through various online sources, including her own site http://www.jinglebelle.com. Oni Press also has original Sunday Comics starring the precocious teen and a downloadable pdf of one of her earliest comic book adventures (http://www.onipress.com/freecomic/).

JINGLE BELLE: DASH AWAY ALL retails for $11.95. It has 136 pages of black-and-white story and art, with a new painted cover by Lynne Naylor (SAMURAI JACK and POWERPUFF GIRLS character designer). It ships to comic book stores on November 5, 2003. The ISBN number is 1-929998-61-9. It is the third volume in the JINGLE BELLE graphic novel series.

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