WC: BOOM! Studios Panel

In 2007, BOOM! announced that Mark Waid was joining the company as editor-in-chief. According to Chip Mosher, sales and marketing director, that kicked off what he calls BOOM! 2.0.

Since then, BOOM! has added more editorial staff and announced several new projects, licensing deals and initiatives. In other words, welcome to BOOM! 3.0.

Mosher and other members of the BOOM! Studios crew, including Publisher Ross Richie, Managing Editor Matt Gagnon and artist Nathan Watson, discussed all things BOOM! during a panel at WonderCon on Friday.

The big news at the panel was the announcement that they've entered into a partnership with Fox Atomic, the movie studio that's also published their own graphic novels, including "28 Days Later: Aftermath" and the "Nightmare Factory" anthologies. Fox Atomic's Eric Lieb came up through the audience after Mark Waid, via video, announced the partnership.

Lieb said he was really happy with the titles they had published so far, but "wanted to do more and blow it out of the water," he said. He approached Richie during WonderCon last year, when both men were at a party sponsored by the San Francisco comic shop Isotope Comics.

"I thought BOOM! was the best fit because of the similar creative vision that we had and I could see that they kind of understood both worlds, as well," Lieb said. "The movie world is different from the comics world, but it's important that they fit together nicely."

No titles were announced during the panel, but Lieb said to expect properties fans would be familiar with, as well as completely new titles. Two titles will launch in July, with a third coming in August.

Mosher kicked off the panel by playing the trailer for "Irredeemable," the upcoming super hero comic by Waid and Peter Krause. Waid discussed both "Irredeemable" and his other new title, "The Unknown," with CBR during the New York Comic Con. During the panel, Mosher revealed another cover to "The Unknown #1," drawn by Paul Pope.

"Do not miss this book," Gagnon, the book's editor, said about "Irredeemable." "Every page he's turning in is blowing me away."

Mosher asked him what it was like to edit a veteran like Waid. "The only thing worse than editing your boss is your boss being Mark Waid," Gagnon joked, adding that he was learning a lot by working with him.

Gagnon, along with editor Ian Brill, also edits "Farscape." The first issue, which came out in December, is BOOM!'s best selling book of all time, selling out in five days. The second issue also sold out. "We've never done a second printing on a second issue in the four year history of BOOM!" Mosher said, until "Farscape #2."

Richie said the book was bringing "Farscape" fans into comic shops. "A lot of fans who don't even particularly read comics just came in because they're fans of 'Farscape,'" Richie said. "Hopefully they picked up something else while they were in there."

A preview of the first issue is available for the iPhone and is "doing phenomenally well," Mosher said. The complete first issue will be up on iTunes for 99 cents in a couple of weeks.

Mosher also spotlighted the next two "Farscape" mini-series, starting with "Farscape: Strange Detractors." It picks up where the first series leaves off. The second is "Farscape: D'Argo's Lament," which will feature extra content from licensor The Jim Henson Company and takes place between seasons three and four.

"'Farscape' has been an absolute pleasure to work on," Gagnon said. "Fan reaction has been overwhelmingly positive."

"Farscape isn't the only BOOM! comic finding its way to mobile devices. Mosher said "Hexed," by Michael Alan Nelson, Emma Rios and Cris Peters, is the first comic available through Google Android. Google Android is the Google operating system used by T-Mobile's G1 phone. So far 20,000 copies have been downloaded. Richie said at least one retailer had non-comics readers coming into their store to find the comic because they saw it on Google Android.

The BOOM! crew also highlighted several other titles that were discussed at their panel at the New York Comic Con, including:

  • "Eureka: Dormant Gene," a second mini-series based on the SciFi Channel series co-created by Andrew Cosby. Cosby will write the series with Jonathan L. Davis, who co-wrote the "Dukes of Hazzard" movie.
  • "Hero Squared: Love and Death," by J.M. DeMatteis, Keith Giffen and Watson. This is the final "Hero Squared" series, "maybe, sort of, unless they decide to do another one down the road," Mosher said.
  • "Fall of Cthulhu: Nemesis," which finishes up their Cthulhu series, by Michael Alan Nelson and Todd Herman.
  • "Mr. Stuffins," which is about a teddy bear secret agent. The first issue was released a few years ago, but the story was never completed until now.
  • Their Disney/Pixar titles, including the Waid-written "Incredibles;" "Cars," which features the origin of Lightning McQueen; "Toy Story" by Dan Jolley and Chris Moreno; and "The Muppet Show" by Roger Langridge.

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