On Friday October 10th from 2-3 Pm on Empire Stage 1-E, you'll be able to get your Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fix! Executive Producers Ciro Nieli and Brandon Auman form the Nickolodeoan show will give exclusive sneak peeks for the upcoming Season 3 and talk with the series’ amazing voice talent including Seth Green (Leonardo), Rob Paulsen (Donatello), Greg Cipes (Michelangelo) and others. The panel will be moderated by Rich Magallanes, Sr. Vice President, Current Series, Nickelodeon Animation.
by Brian LeTendre
A week ago today as I write this, Matt and I were driving through Connecticut with a carload of people on the way to New York for the first Special Edition: NYC. Knowing it was going to be a comic-focused show by the folks who run New York Comic Con, we had a pretty good idea of what to expect. I’m happy to say, Special Edition: NYC ended up being exactly what we wanted it to be--an Artist Alley filled with a Who’s Who of comic creators.
For those that have to been to NYCC the past few years, Special Edition: NYC took place in the same location that Artist Alley has been in. In addition to all of the creator tables, there was also a healthy mix of vendors selling comics, games, toys and more.
NYCC can be a bit overwhelming, as the entire Javits Center is packed wall to wall with so much to see you don’t know where to start. The vibe at Special Edition: NYC was much less frantic. Everyone was very laid back, and since the show was in one area of the building, people really took their time to walk the aisles, as there wasn’t somewhere else to run off to (unless you were going to a panel, of course).
As with NY Comic Fest, I came into Special Edition: NYC with a handful of “must-have” interviews, and I pretty much got all of them.
I spent some time with Joe Kelly (I Kill Giants, Man of Action, Deadpool) talking about his heartbreaking Rhino story from Amazing Spider-Man (issues #617 and #625 if you want to read it). I sat down with James Tynion IV to talk about The Eighth Seal and his new series The Woods. Marguerite Bennett and I talked about her recent Lois Lane one-shot and how great a Lois ongoing would be. And I actually got to watch artist Will Sliney (Fearless Defenders) sketch one of my favorite characters of all time as I interviewed him about the upcoming Spider-Man 2099 series.
So from a wish list standpoint, I had a pretty great day of interviews. But one of the best things about Special Edition: NYC was that it was wall to wall creators. Everywhere I turned, there was someone I wanted to interview. We were there less than five minutes when I saw and sat down with Enrica Jang, who adapted Poe’s The Cask of Amontillado and is writing the upcoming House of Montressor. I had just reviewed The Cask of Amontillado in episode #593 of Secret Identity, and it was great to talk with a fellow Poe fan about what makes that story so memorable.
A little while later, I saw the first issue of Madame Frankenstein at a table and walked over to meet series writer Jamie S. Rich (It Girl and the Atomics, Archer Coe). He was sharing a booth with Mike Allred, and during our interview, we were treated to a demonstration by an escape artist (you will literally hear the chains jingling while I’m talking to Jamie). I also ended up picking up Archer Coe and The Thousand Natural Shocks, which I cannot wait to dive into.
In addition to getting a slew of great interviews, I also spent some money. There was a vendor who had a tone of Minecraft stuff (my kids’ current obsession), and I was able to grab a couple of the strategy guides that have been sold out here at home. I got some extra dad points from my kids, which was well worth spending most of my allowance. I also picked up the Archer Coe trade from Jamie and a great Poe anthology from Enrica Jang.
I also ran into plenty of friends at the show. It’s always a pleasure to see Mike Norton (Battlepug, Revival), and we spent some time catching up. Our good friend and fellow podcaster Darrell Taylor was there, and recorded a great Valiant panel for his Valiant podcast. And for the third time in three weeks, I ran into longtime listener of the show Mike S. (known as Six Shooter on the SI boards). Our friend Lacey Gilleran from G33king Out was there working for ReedPOP, and we got some cool swag to bring home from her. And we were accompanied by a trio of Matt’s friends who were all attending their first comic show. They had an amazing time, and it was great to see their reactions to the sights and sounds we sometimes take for granted.
All in all, Special Edition: NYC was a blast. We got some great interviews (Matt even chatted with legend Kurt Busiek), caught up with some friends and came home with some great comics. You really can’t ask for any more than that.
by Brian LeTendre
If the Sunday I spent at the XL Center in Hartford CT was any indication, I’d say the inaugural year of Hartford Comic Con was a rousing success.
I took my seven-year-old son with me down to the show, and we both had a blast. There was a great mix of comics, toys, games both on display and for sale to attendees. The atmosphere of the show as very family-friendly, and there was a healthy contingent of cosplayers there as well.
Of course, we ran into a whole bunch of our creator friends, like Keith Gleason (Hero Envy, Swamp Tales), Matt Ryan (Free Lunch Comics), Tom Van Zandt (Unhappy Gran’Ma) and Sean Wang (Runners). Our pal John Cimino was there with his Saturday Morning Collectibles booth, and my son grabbed some great back issues from him.
We also ran into our good friend and SI contributor Sarah Hodge Wetherbe, who was rockin’ an excellent Velma cosplay.
All in all, I think the first Hartford Comic Con had a great first year. Next year I’d like to see some more panels (maybe a podcasting panel?), and some more flexible pricing for kids (under 6 was free but kids over 6 had to pay adult price), but there was a lot of fun to be had this year and I will definitely be back again for year two.
ZICA, a manufacturer of pop culture icons and Captain Action Enterprises, licensors of the popular Captain Action toy line, have teamed up to produce a series of retro 3.75” figures. These products will be on sale internationally in late 2014.
“ZICA Toys is very happy to be working with Captain Action Enterprises on bringing the exciting characters of the Captain Action universe into 3.75" retro figure format! This scale will allow us to do a lot of really cool stuff with the property in addition to just making the action figures. My favorite thing about the smaller scale figures when I was a kid was the vehicles and play sets that went with them, and I can definitely see some exciting possibilities for these with Captain Action!” said Craig Owen, owner of ZICA toys.
Captain Action is based on the action figure created in 1966 by Stan Weston for Ideal Toys and sold internationally. The hero came equipped with a wardrobe of costumes allowing him to become many different heroes such as Batman, The Lone Ranger, the Green Hornet and many more. In 1967, Captain Action proved so popular that the line was expanded to include a sidekick, Action Boy and a blue skinned alien foe with bug eyes, the nefarious Dr. Evil. The following year, DC Comics licensed the character from Ideal and published five issues of Captain Action featuring industry luminaries such as Jim Shooter, Wally Wood and Gil Kane.
The line has experienced as strong resurgence with toys, comics and collectibles. An animated series is being planned.
“We’re excited to jump into the this exciting segment, and have been very impressed with the Six Million Dollar Man toys from ZICA,” said Ed Catto of Captain Action Enterprises. “
Current plans call for the first wave to include characters such as Captain Action, Action Boy, Dr. Evil and the Silver Streak.
“We’re also very excited to work with ZICA to develop vehicles and play sets”, said Joe Ahearn of Captain Action Enterprises. “And we will also be exploring the development of vehicles such as the Silver Streak, Captain Action’s amphibious car, in other scales and formats.”
The new products will debut in late 2014.
TwoMorrows Publishing releases the 28th issue of BrickJournal, the magazine for LEGO enthusiasts of all ages. For this issue, editor Joe Meno has gone behind the bricks of The LEGO Movie, to talk to the film's designers about the creation of everything from characters and sets, to vehicles and the movie's "extras."
Having already grossed $363 million at box offices worldwide, The LEGO Movie is a runaway hit, with a sequel already planned for 2017. Much of that success has been pinned on the film's endearing new characters, including Emmet (the generic minifigure construction worker who proves to be more than just another face in the LEGO crowd), Wyldstyle (the action-adventuress of the film, and girlfriend of LEGO Batman), and heart-warming fan-favorite Unikitty. The development of the characters is examined in-depth in this issue, with LEGO VP of Design Matthew Ashton, and Senior Designer Michael Fuller.
"There are 183 characters in the movie, so there was a lot to keep track of," Ashton recounted. "We had a huge chart on the wall of our design studio to keep a record of who had been approved and who was still work in progress." Many of the figures were designed the same way LEGO does when creating actual toys, being hand-sculpted and 3D-scanned, with accessories created in digital 3D programs, so the movie would look like real LEGO minifigures had come to life.
"The regular minifigures were the easier characters to develop, as some were based on existing characters," Ashton recalled of characters like LEGO Batman. For many of the original new characters like Emmet and Wyldstyle, the directors had a very clear vision of what they wanted them to look like—but not always. "Unikitty wasn’t even part of the story to begin with. Cloud Cuckoo Land had been imagined long before her, and was originally ruled over by another character. We felt the team was missing someone who could make you beam with joy and make your heart melt." So Ashton and Fuller worked with the film's directors to come up with what they felt were the "cutest, cuddliest, fluffiest things in the universe." Their top two picks were "kittens and unicorns—we decided to combine the two!"
In addition to detailing the character creation process, the issue looks at the creation of real-world versions of the digital sets from the film, including how fans competed to have their LEGO creations featured as "extras" in the film, how one builder had to create the film's colossal "Coliseum" scene for the movie's premiere, and how Warner Brothers commissioned a UK firm to recreate the film's Bricksburg town layout for a touring LEGO Movie venue—in a little over three weeks.
BrickJournal #28 also presents an overview of other brickfilms by moviemakers The Brotherhood Workshop, a new column on LEGO Mindstorms building, its regular feature on minifigure customization by expert Jared K. Burks, step-by-step “You Can Build It” instructions, and other articles for anyone with an interest in LEGO. It ships March 26 directly from TwoMorrows Publishing, and will be available at all LEGO retail stores and Barnes & Noble bookstores in early April. It can also be ordered at any comic book store using Diamond Comic Distributors Order Code: JAN141556
You can check out a digital preview of this issue right now by clicking here!
by Brian LeTendre
Longtime listeners fo the show are more than famil;air with our pal John Cimino from his days on the Hero Envy web series and the Swass Cast. You al probably know that John is a huge toy collector and owns the most valuable Mego Stretch Hulk in existence.
Well, John is currently putting his knowledge of toys and collectibles to good use, as he's started Saturday Morning Collectibles. Not only is he buying and selling collectible toys, but he's also providing appraisals for those interested in knowing how much their original Quick Kick GI figures are worth.
On Sunday March 16th, John will be appearing at the Spellman Museum of Stamps & Postal History in Weston, MA, where he'll be leading a discussion about collecting and providing appraisals for collectors as well. If you're in the area, the event goes from 1PM until 2:30PM, and the admission is $5. You can find out more info over at the Spellman website, www.spellman.org.
Nemo Publishing announced this week that pre-orders are officially open for The Sea Ghost action figure. Sea Ghost's first appearance was in The Undersea Adventures of Capt'n Eli Vol 1 and was so loved that the character spawned his own title in Sea Ghost #1: The Sea Ghost In The Machine and now he's available as his own action figure. The 8” figure has a special pre-order price of $16 instead of the regular price of $20. The run will be limited so fans should not delay placing an order at www.captneli.com.
The collectible "maker" action figure is based on the classic Mego-style. Original character designed by Capt'n Eli and Commander X creator Jay Piscopo and handcrafted with the help of Paul "Dr Mego" Clarke. The head was created by custom toy artist Troy Younger. Piscopo explains, “The Sea Ghost figure was the next logical step after the success of the Commander X Figure. Sea Ghost is the one figure that resonates with all toy and comic collectors.”
Book 3 in the The Undersea Adventures of Capt'n Eli is due out this summer. New to the world of Captn Eli? Check out The Sea Ghost, Commander X, Captain Midnight, and Capt'n Eli books as well as Captn' Eli sodas at http://captneli.shipyardshopping.com/index.html. For a limited time,running you can get both Undersea Adventures of Capt'n Eli books for just $9.99!
The Swass-Cast is back with an all-new audio format!
A bunch of months ago I got together with Keith Gleason and John Cimino from the Swass-Cast / Hero Envy and recorded a show where we discussed our favorite comic books based on toys! Sadly Brian couldn't make this little get together, but we pressed forward anyway.
In the player below you can listen to the entire episode, as well as check out some great pics from the boys at comic shows over the years, and some behind the scenes of the Hero Envy comic.
Like every time we all get together, you can hear a real passion for the subject matter because we love what we talk about and love to talk about it with each other. People have described this episode as a lion tamer (Keith) getting in the middle of two nutty lions (me and John).
So sit back, relax and enjoy the show! Then go to www.heroenvy.com and catch up on the rest!
A few weeks ago I told you all about the cool Doctor Who plush toys handmade by the Wyrd Sisters in Arkansas. Well today in the mail I received some of these cool toys to see for myself and let me tell you now... I'm impressed!
The TARDIS and the Daleks come in two sizes; the small is about 5 inches tall and the large are about 9 inches tall and are stuffed and squishy. They are handmade with perfect stitching on the TARDIS and buttons covering the lower half of the Daleks.
You can tell these unique gifts are made with love and the small TARDIS is now this years addition to our Christmas Tree.
To find out more about these great items (and more) contact https://www.facebook.com/WyrdSistersCrafts?ref=br_tf
As most of you know, Brian and I love our hockey; the game, the teams and of course, the jerseys. In fact Brian and I can usually be seen at a comic show (in the fall / winter months) wearing a hockey jersey. So what if you combines a cool hockey jersey with the geekiest stuff like Star Wars, horror movies, video games and Doctor Who?
Geeky Jerseys (www.geekyjerseys.com) is the coolest place where clothing meets geek style! There is something cool about hockey jerseys and something even cooler about a custom made jerseys that bring to life the stuff we love. So if you are rocking the sandy colored Tusken Raiders # 77 (the year Star Wars came out), the green 'Army of Darkness' Boomstick # 92 or the Pokemon # 24 (no idea why 24. The Pokedex lists the not so popular Arbok)
So check out the website and make your order! I'm looking at the Doctor Who TARRDIS jersey customized with MATMAN # 9 on the back? Why number nine? It's my number! Plus, how cool would I look writing my Doctor Who book wearing this crazy cool jersey?