|OLD-TIME RADIO AND COMICS HEROES BURST BACK ONTO THE SCENE!03/28/12 @ 4:15 pm EST
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Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? (Hint: The guy dresses up in a cape and runs around at night. And it's not Batman.)
JOE QUESADA APPEARS ON STEPHEN COLBERTíS FINAL NIGHT, AS THE CAPTAIN AMERICA SHIELD IS TAKEN INTO ETERNITY12/19/14 @ 11:09 pm EST
The Shadow still knows — as do Flash Gordon, the Lone Ranger, the Green Hornet and other heroes of 1930s and '40s radio shows, pulp magazines and movie serials.
These good guys are making a comeback, though mainly in comics and feature-length movies. Next month, The Shadow receives a comics reboot courtesy of Dynamite Entertainment, which also publishes ongoing series starring Flash Gordon and Green Hornet plus a new title with pulp hero The Spider that's due in May.
On the big screen, a masked Seth Rogen stung bad guys in last year's The Green Hornet. And in The Lone Ranger, in production for release in 2013, Armie Hammer rides tall as the title cowboy with Johnny Depp as his sidekick Tonto. Baby Boomers grew up watching the Clayton Moore TV series in the '50s, although the saga began as a 1933 radio show in Detroit.
Though these characters may not be as well known as today's comic-book superheroes or the Star Wars and Harry Potter clans, they were the bee's knees for a generation that was decades away from the Internet and iPods.
Before Batman, there was the alter ego Lamont Cranston donning the shadowy mask and hat while haunting radio waves as The Shadow, voiced by Orson Welles in the late '30s.
And before Superman and Captain America there was Flash Gordon, an all-American space adventurer who tussled with planetary tyrant Ming the Merciless in sci-fi comic strips by Alex Raymond and serial films starring Buster Crabbe.
"The '20s and '30s are seen as a very romantic age, with the criminal underworld of urban America and high adventure of exotic foreign locations providing a bit of an edge," says Garth Ennis, who is writing the new Shadow comic. "The reality, I'm sure, would have been mostly a lot more mundane and occasionally quite grim."
He's crafting The Shadow as a dangerous champion of law and order with a flair for the dramatic, and he is embracing one of the vigilante's oldest and most famous traits: his habit of laughing as he consigns his enemies to their doom.
"I decided to be fairly sparing with it," Ennis says. "If he started howling every time he threw a punch or fired a shot, it would get old fast. So I decided to preserve the laugh for moments of deep, dark, extreme humor."
His take on The Shadow comic is a bloody affair, where the mysterious figure dispatches bad guys with violent aplomb. More than 70 years ago, though, audiences had to visualize with their imagination what was going on during the radio-show exploits.
The popularity of the old Shadow and Green Hornet radio shows and their ilk in their heyday is best compared to programs children flock to today, such as Hannah Montana and Dora the Explorer, says Martin Grams Jr., a radio-show historian and author.
Back then, kids and adults would read books, pulps and comics because they were a cheap form of entertainment, and radio was an even bigger medium because it was free.
Some adaptations tank
While movies measure success with box-office receipts, commercial sponsors would gauge ratings of radio shows based on the number of giveaway premiums offered during the commercial breaks — such as various Lone Ranger rings and badges. They were then used to persuade sponsors to stick around because of a large listener base.
It wasn't just kids, either. Housebound and disabled people "who couldn't go visit their local movie theater had the opportunity to enjoy action and adventure with the turn of their dial," Grams says.
"The business of pop culture was defined during the 1930s and 1940s when movie producers snatched up the screen rights to popular radio programs and produced motion pictures, serials and film shorts based on the properties."
Since then, movie studios, TV networks and comics publishers have attempted adaptations of those characters, with varying results.
The Lone Ranger TV series began in 1949, ran eight seasons and defined the character for many. Flash Gordon sped off to space with live-action and animated shows, and a 1980 film became a cult classic with Sam Jones clad in a white shirt bearing the word "Flash."
But two more recent movies, The Shadow (1994) with Alec Baldwin and the 1996 Billy Zane vehicle The Phantom (based on the comic strip from the '30s), were not exactly heroic at the box office. And Disney's new big-budget John Carter, based on the Edgar Rice Burroughs pulp sci-fi hero, has thus far tanked.
"My theory is that modern audiences have a hard time accepting un-ironic heroism unless it's presented just right," says Eric Trautmann, writer of Dynamite's Flash Gordon: Zeitgeist series. (A devotee of the era, Trautmann has a Maltese Falcon on his desk, a statue of Humphrey Bogart as Sam Spade, a Buck Rogers blaster and a replica 1930s radio.)
He concedes that pulp is difficult to write because it requires a certain innocence. Nazis show up in his series, but when they're the evil-doers du jour, modern audiences can't help but think of the Holocaust, "a sort of demise of innocence for the Western world." That makes it a lot harder to take the proceedings seriously.
'We're all geeks in a way'
"The obvious inclination is to keep things a little more self-referential and cartoony, tongue firmly in cheek," Trautmann says, "and that kind of thing really works against the story, the character, and readers' and viewers' embracing the tale."
Those characters of yesteryear, however, remain important in the history of pop-culture heroes, says comic-book artist Alex Ross, one of the creative spearheads of Dynamite's pulp series.
"Seeing how a character like The Shadow would influence every other flamboyant costumed hero in history was very interesting to me," he says. "A load of the earliest superhero fashions came from the artists swiping from Alex Raymond's Flash Gordon."
Heroic fiction draws from a lot of the same wells. Without John Carter in 1917, Trautmann feels we probably don't get Flash Gordon in 1934, a quintessentially American protagonist whose "unflappable 'can do' attitude and unshakable optimism would resonate in almost any era." Without Flash, there's no Luke Skywalker or Han Solo in Star Wars, and without that, we don't get Avatar.
"Even Star Trek owes a debt to period literature —Captain Kirk as Horatio Hornblower in space," Trautmann says. "Heroic fiction shares those archetypes and themes, so that influence is probably so ingrained now that a modern practitioner might not even be aware of what influenced the sources he or she is drawing inspiration from."
Affection for heroic pulp specifically — as with old-school sci-fi, fantasy and mystery stories — seems to be cyclical, Trautmann says. But the resurgence of these characters is also being helped by an overall nostalgia for the early- to mid-20th century, from Boardwalk Empire to Mad Men.
"It's been a rough decade or two," he says. "Looking back on what seems to be a simpler, less complicated time is certainly appealing."
Curiosity and a drive to seek knowledge are probably the main reasons people like to revisit historic pop culture, Grams says.
"We're all geeks in a way, trying to intake all the information we can on a comic-book character or movie, then digest, then recollect to friends to show how much more we know than they do."
The historian enjoys seeing kids introduced to heroes that were a seminal part of their grandparents' lives. He says it's a good bet they know tons more about The Hunger Games and Twilight than old Shadow magazine tales, and have no idea of the existence of Lone Ranger radio shows of yore.
"In my experience," Ennis says, "these characters tend to be pretty strong to begin with: They go through periods of revival, then slump due to overindulgence, then lie dormant, then undergo the next revival. But they always come back."
And, Grams notes, "the oldies are still the goodies."
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Last night saw Stephen Colbert‘s final trip into truthiness, and saw The Colbert Report stage massed with a hundred past guests from Henry Kissinger to Patrick Stewart to Big Bird, singing we’ll meet again.DARK HORSE TO PUBLISH THE ORDER OF THE FORGEóTHE UNTOLD TALE OF GEORGE WASHINGTON12/19/14 @ 10:53 pm EST
And among them was a familiar face, multiple guest of the show, Joe Quesada CCO of Marvel Comics. (Well, the studio was just round the corner from Marvel’s offices it wouldn’t have been a big trip.)
And as for that infamous Captain America shield that was given to Stephen Colbert on the occasion of Captain America’s death a few years ago? Well, Colbert had sold off much of the set and the props but there was no way he was letting that go, and so he took the shield with him!
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BATMAN INFECTED BY THE AMAZO VIRUS!12/19/14 @ 10:48 pm EST
In spring 2015, creator and producer Donn D. Berdahl of Bronco Donn Entertainment and Dark Horse Comics, in association with Home Plate Entertainment, will present a tale left out of the history books. Set in 1753, this comic shows a young George Washington who ain’t your schoolteacher’s George Washington; this is The Order of the Forge
Victor Gischler (Deadpool: Merc with a Mouth
, Wolverine: Revolver
, Angel & Faith
) writes a three-issue miniseries that will surprise and shock scholars everywhere. Based on an original concept from Donn D. Berdahl and a treatment by well-known British author Andy Briggs, The Order of the Forge has “humor, vulgarity, and at times brutality,” according to Comic Bastards. This series is a must-read for fans of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and all other historical fiction works!
Before he fathered a nation, young George Washington forged his legend in blood! Before he fought for his country, he killed for the king! Imbued with the mystical powers of America’s original inhabitants, George and his superpowered axe—along with his friends, a debauched, middle-aged Ben Franklin and a young, rebellious Paul Revere—must stop an evil colonial governor who wishes to rule an empire!
“Dark and filled with seething rage, this George will shatter the image of the white-haired father of a nation!” stated Berdahl. Publisher Mike Richardson, founder of Dark Horse, said, “This is one of those great changeups that challenge our notions of a widely accepted historical figure and pose a ‘what if’ in an entertaining manner.”
Source: DC | Categories: Justice League | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment
ROBIN RISES! BATMAN FALLS?12/19/14 @ 10:44 pm EST
The Amazo Virus has been running rampant ever since the “accident” happened in Lex Luthor’s laboratory at the end of JUSTICE LEAGUE #35. With many of the Justice League heroes hospitalized with the virus, its up to Wonder Woman, Superman and Batman to stop the virus from spreading further in JUSTICE LEAGUE #37.
While working to detain patient zero outside Lex’s laboratory, the super heroes learn two very disturbing facts about the virus: Not only does the virus transform a human host into a meta-human, but the virus can survive outside the human body and continuously mutate!
How will a mutating, airborne, meta-human-making virus ever be contained?!
To make matters much worse, in a failed attempt to extract blood from patient zero, Batman is accidentally exposed to the virus!
After his hazmat suit is destroyed by patient zero’s heat vision blast, see below as Batman reveals the terrible news! Is Batman the next super hero to be infected? If so, what future doom awaits?
JUSTICE LEAGUE #37, written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Jason Fabok, is available in stores now.
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SPIDER-WOMAN WEAVES A WEB ACROSS COMICS & GAMES12/19/14 @ 10:38 pm EST
In BATMAN AND ROBIN #37, the penultimate issue of ROBIN RISES!, there is one last obstacle blocking Bruce Wayne’s quest to bring Damian back from the dead: Darkseid! Back in ROBIN RISES: OMEGA #1, Batman made a vow to bring back Robin alive – and the quest took him all the way to Apokolips!
In this epic stand-off between good and evil, Darkseid pushes Batman, in his Hellbat suit, to the brink of destruction as Batman attempts to secure Damian’s sarcophagus and escape Darkseid’s rampage. After capturing the omega beams necessary to heal the chaos shard, Batman has no other choice but to divert all power of his Hellbat suit, which draws from the wearer’s metabolism for energy, to flee the scene with his dead son’s coffin.
Though the power surge rescues Batman from Darkseid, the Hellbat suit has left Bruce with only a few minutes before the suit implodes!
Ignoring the warning alerts, Batman uses his last moments to resurrect Damian using the chaos shard…. And it works! Robin Rises!
But as Damian awakes, Bruce can’t escape the turmoil he put his body through…
Just moments after reuniting and their emotional father-son embrace, see below as Bruce collapses! What does this mean? Has Batman sacrificed himself for his son? Sound off in the comments below!
BATMAN AND ROBIN #37, written by Peter Tomasi and illustrated by Patrick Gleason, is available in stores now. And look ROBIN RISES: ALPHA #1, the final chapter in ROBIN RISES!, when it hit shelves next Wednesday.
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HEROES & VILLAINS RECEIVE A MAJOR UPGRADE IN GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY & X-MEN: THE BLACK VORTEX12/19/14 @ 6:46 pm EST
Jessica Drew has already seen her profile raised in recent months as a key player in the Spider-Verse saga, but spinning out of the event, SPIDER-WOMAN will see its leading lady couple her new attitude with a fresh look—one already in display right now in the “Spider-Man Unlimited” mobile game from Gameloft!“We started planning this last May or so,” unpacks SPIDER-WOMAN editor Nick Lowe of the metamorphosis just now beginning to unfold. “[Series writer] Dennis [Hopeless] and I were hatching what the book would be and one of the first things I wanted to do was change her costume [both] because I don’t love that costume and she hasn’t really had an alternative to it! At least not for any long stretch of time.”So why the wait?“I met with Kris Anka on the show floor at San Diego Comic-Con [in July] to get him going on the redesign, but the trick was that we didn’t want Jess in this new costume during Spider-Verse,” Lowe continues. “There were so many other Spider characters and we needed her to be recognizable.”While Jessica’s Anka-designed outfit won’t debut in comics until March with SPIDER-WOMAN #5, fans can check it out immediately and enter an addictive gaming experience with “Spider-Man Unlimited.”“It was a really great process, made smoother by the fact that Marvel and Gameloft have been so well-synched since the start of our work on Spider-Verse,” says Gameloft Product Manager Tatiana Nahai of the coordination to include Spider-Woman’s update in “Spider-Man Unlimited,” which already boasts synergy with the comics in the form of storyline tie-ins as well as recently introduced characters like Spider-Gwen. “Marvel had reached out to us about the new Spider-Woman and we were immediately excited to introduce her in the game, especially as we consider it a top priority to showcase exciting and engaging comics content in ‘Spider-Man Unlimited.’”“Javier has shown through his work on DAREDEVIL and SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN that he is a storytelling master and his work just fit where Dennis and I wanted the book to go perfectly,” says Lowe. “The new direction is street level and Javier’s style that brings [Frank] Miller, [Klaus] Janson, and [David] Mazzuchelli all to mind makes me giggle with delight.”Follow Jessica Drew’s adventures in Spider-Verse right now with SPIDER-WOMAN and play as her in the new costume immediately by downloading “Spider-Man Unlimited”!
Source: Marvel | Categories: Guardians of The Galaxy | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment
DYNAMITE TAKES FAMILIAR CHARACTERS TO ALTERED STATES IN UPCOMING ONE-SHOT COMICS12/19/14 @ 6:37 pm EST
Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. What would you give up in your quest for power? What if it cost you your very soul? This February, those questions and more will be answered in the pages Guardians of the Galaxy & X-Men: The Black Vortex,
the epic crossover taking place in the pages of Guardians of the Galaxy, All-New X-Men, Legendary Star-Lord, Cyclops, Captain Marvel, Nova
and Guardians Team-Up
But before this epic even blasts off in 2015, Marvel is pleased to present your very first look at a selection of Cosmically Enhanced Variant Covers
, all by blockbuster artist Andrea Sorrentino
(Uncanny X-Men Annual, All-New X-Men Annual)
! With the power to unlock the user’s true cosmic potential, The Black Vortex, an ancient artifact of limitless power has been unleashed upon the universe. Now, get your first look at some of the Guardians and the X-Men in their new, supercharged forms!
“What happens when one person submits to the Black Vortex and becomes a titan of the cosmos? What happens when a whole team does it? Or a whole planet?” says Guardians of the Galaxy & X-Men: The Black Vortex Alpha #1 writer Sam Humphries. “Imagine the metamorphosis that turned Norin Radd into the Silver Surfer, or Jean Grey into Dark Phoenix, available to anyone in the Marvel Universe.”
“But of course, no amount of power comes without a cost,” Humphries continued.
Billions of lives are at stake, the heroes of the Marvel Universe will have to face the darkness inside themselves if they hope to succeed. But will they be the ones to save the galaxy, or will they be seduced by the Black Vortex’s power?
Don’t miss these epic variants as they grace the covers of each chapter of the epic crossover and don’t miss one moment of the action as it all begins this February in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY & X-MEN: THE BLACK VORTEX ALPHA #1
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY & X-MEN: THE BLACK VORTEX ALPHA #1 (DEC140820) Written by SAM HUMPHRIES
Art & Cover by ED MCGUINNESS Cosmically Enhanced Variant by ANDREA SORRENTINO (DEC140822)
FOC – 01/12/15, On-Sale – 02/04/15
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MEET 'THE WALKING DEAD' STAR SONEQUA MARTIN-GREEN AT WIZARD WORLD INDIANAPOLIS, RALEIGH COMIC CONS12/19/14 @ 6:29 pm EST
Dynamite Entertainment is excited to announce the first wave of its all-new Altered States line where familiar characters from Dynamite's comics will appear in brand-new adventures unlike anything fans have seen before. Vampirella, Red Sonja, The Shadow, and Doc Savage will each star in their own story set in a parallel reality in the vein of DC's classic Elseworlds and Marvel's What If! where anything can - and will - happen to them.
The publisher has brought on an array of the industry's top talent to help tell these unique tales:
· Writer Brandon Jerwa teams up with artist Juanan Ramirez for Altered States: Red Sonja, a story about a red headed museum worker in New York City who soon finds herself fighting for survival in a dystopian-inspired Hyborian wasteland.
· In Altered States: Vampirella, veteran Vampirella scribe Nancy A. Collins and artist Francesco Manna turn the tables on Ella Normandy after she survives a crash landing to become the sole human on a planet full of Vampires.
· Writer David Avallone pulls double duty in this special event, teaming up with artist Ivan Rodriguez for Altered States: The Shadow, and a tale that proves once and more that there are worse things in the world than the evil that lurks within the hearts of men. Then in Altered States: Doc Savage, David and artist Dave Acosta explore what happens when the world's most powerful man is turned into a rampaging beast whose very humanity may be lost forever.
Each issue will feature a cover by Billy Tan.
"What If? and Elseworld stories have been a part of comics for 40 years," said Dynamite Publisher and CEO Nick Barrucci. "There's always that "Would that be cool" or "what if we had him or her do that" story that doesn't fit in to continuity. Now we can pick some of the best stories and create "Altered States" for our branded characters. These 4 books stand on their own yet will be the foundation for this universe of characters."
Each Altered States story will unfold in a 32 page full-color comic. With a new issue planned for release every Wednesday in March. Fans eager for more info on Altered States should follow Dynamite on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and Instagram for the latest updates as they come in.
Altered States will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors' January Previews catalog, the premiere source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market, and slated for release March 2015. Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Altered States with their local comic book retailers. Altered States will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, iVerse, and Dark Horse Digital.
Source: Wizard World | Categories: MIsc | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment
Talented young rising star Sonequa Martin-Green makes her first Wizard World appearances at new shows in Indianapolis and Raleigh early in 2015.'JIGSAW' TOBIN BELL TO MAKE WIZARD WORLD DEBUT AT BRUCE CAMPBELL'S HORROR FEST IN CHICAGO12/19/14 @ 6:27 pm EST
Martin-Green, who plays "Sasha" on the hit series "The Walking Dead," is also well known for her recurring roles as "Tamara" on fan favorite "Once Upon A Time" and "Courtney Wells" on the Emmy winning drama, "The Good Wife."
She will appear at the Indianapolis Convention Center on Saturday and Sunday, February 14 and 15, and at the Raleigh Convention Center on Saturday and Sunday, March 14 and 15. Welcome her to Wizard World at these two great inaugural events.
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EISNER AWARD JUDGES FOR 2015 NAMED12/19/14 @ 7:09 am EST
With seven films released, the chilling SAW franchise has created some of horror's most memorable scenes and moments. Tobin Bell, as iconic villain "Jigsaw," toy factory worker turned sadistic mastermind, was a big part of many of those in each of the films, released one per year from 2004-2010.
Bell has also made guest appearances on numerous award-winning television shows including "24," "The Sopranos," "The West Wing," "Alias," "Criminal Minds," "E.R." and Seinfeld." In addition to SAW, he has appeared in the films MISSISSIPPI BURNING, THE VERDICT, GOODFELLAS, SOPHIES CHOICE, THE FIRM, IN THE LINE OF FIRE, THE QUICK AND THE DEAD, THE ROAD TO ELDORADO and AN INNOCENT MAN.
See him in his first Wizard World appearance at the new bruce Campbell's Horror Fest, Friday evening and Saturday, March 6-7, at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center.
Source: Bleeding Cool | Categories: MIsc | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment
Welcome to the folk who will create the nomination list for the Eisner Awards 2015 to be presented at San Diego Comic Con.Carr D’Angelo,
the founding owner of Earth-2 Comics, operates two stores in the Los Angeles area with his wife, Susan Avallone. Earth-2 Comics Sherman Oaks is the 2007 recipient of the Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award. In 2011, Earth-2 Sherman Oaks and Northridge were named “Best Place to Stock Up on Trade Paperbacks” by the LA Weekly
in their annual Best of Los Angeles issue. D’Angelo started his career in New York as an editor and writer forStarlog, Fangoria,
and Comics Scene
magazines. Moving to Los Angeles, he worked as a script reader, studio executive, and movie producer. He currently serves as vice president of ComicsPRO, the trade association for comic book specialty retailers.Richard Graham
is media librarian and associate professor at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and managing editor of SANE
(Sequential Art Narratives in Education), an academic e-journal dedicated to using comics in classrooms. Richard is a graduate of the Library School at the University of Iowa and holds a master’s degree in education from Texas A&M, Corpus Christi. In 2012 he was nominated for an Eisner Award for editing Government Issue: Comics for the People
(2012), a collection of comics produced for the federal and state governments. He currently maintains online collections of government and educational comic books as well as writes graphic novel/comics reviews for the website No Flying, No Tights
is the author of Marvel Comics: The Untold Story,
which received an Eisner Award for Best Comics-Related Book in 2013. His writing has appeared in Wired, Rolling Stone
, and the Los Angeles Times
. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.Ron McFee
has been a volunteer with Comic-Con International for 35 years and has served on the Convention Committee since 1992. He has spent the last 17 years working in the professional registration department, assisting the industry professionals through the application and registration process. Ron also volunteers with San Diego Friends of the library, helping to raise money and bring awareness to how comics can play an important role in literacy. In 2014 he piloted participation of the San Diego city libraries in Free Comic Book Day. Ron has been an executive producer of two animated features, with others in development.Maggie Thompson
has been writing and editing news and articles about comic books and comic strips for more than half a century. Her earliest such work appeared in the pioneering fan publication Comic Art
, co-edited with Don Thompson, starting in 1961. After three decades of co-editing the industry publicationComics Buyer’s Guide
, she has begun regular contributions to Comic-Con’s Toucan
blog and to Diamond Comic Distributors’Scoop
is an associate professor of English and the Director of Rhetoric and Composition at Portland (Oregon) State University, where she is developing a Comics Studies program. Her research interests include visual rhetoric and graphic narratives, and she has published pieces on comics for the popular press and academic journals. Her book Lynda Barry: Girlhood Through the Looking Glass,
was the 2013 Eisner Award winner for Best Educational/Academic Work.
Latest News1. JOE QUESADA APPEARS ON STEPHEN COLBERTíS FINAL NIGHT, AS THE CAPTAIN AMERICA SHIELD IS TAKEN INTO ETERNITY
Updated: 12/19/14 @ 11:09 pm
2. DARK HORSE TO PUBLISH THE ORDER OF THE FORGEóTHE UNTOLD TALE OF GEORGE WASHINGTON
3. BATMAN INFECTED BY THE AMAZO VIRUS!
4. ROBIN RISES! BATMAN FALLS?
5. SPIDER-WOMAN WEAVES A WEB ACROSS COMICS & GAMES