Saturday, May 29, 2010

Bullets: Incognito Cover Art, Secret Avengers, 7 Psychos, etc.

Since a rough of the cover art had already been released, I expected that we would soon see at least an advance solicit for Incognito: Bad Influences, but the title is nowhere to be found in the August solicitations. If the title is still scheduled for a September debut, we'll likely see its solicit info next month.

In the meantime, Sean Phillips has revealed the final cover art for the first issue, with the title corrected.

And, we have a few other highlights from Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips.
  • Other Recent Releases. It seems that Brubaker has at least two or three mainstream Marvel titles coming out every month, and Phillips continues releasing new material -- his first contribution to Stephen King's Gunslinger comic book came out last week -- but this week has been especially noteworthy.

    Phillips' Seven Psychopaths has finally reached American markets this week. Comic Book Resources released an exclusive, seven-page preview followed by a four-star review. It's not the only positive review online, as Newsarama also gives the first issue high marks.

    Brubaker's Secret Avengers also debuted this week, and Newsarama has an extensive interview with Brubaker, about this new ongoing series. CBR has a six-page preview and a four-star review, and Newsarama cover the title in its rapid-fire reviews.

    Most noteworthy is an article and interview about Secret Avengers in USA Today. The article reiterates what we've already reported, that Brubaker's "creator-owned crime title Incognito has been optioned by 20th Century Fox as a movie and has a sequel coming out in the fall."

  • Brubaker Film and Best-of Highlights. Ed Brubaker's been busy outside the comics world with In the Dark, a short film that recently premiered at this year's Seattle International Film Festival.

    I gather that this eight-minute film is Brubaker's directorial debut; he wrote the screenplay, and his wife Melanie Tomlin edited and co-produced the crime story.

    Back in funny pages, Comic Book Resources recently highlighted "the greatest Brubaker stories ever told" as part of a series for the month of May. CBR readers cast their votes, and Sleeper: Season One got top marks. Individual story arcs from his major collaborations with Sean Phillips -- Sleeper, Criminal, and Incognito -- took seven of the list's fifteen slots.

  • Original Artwork and Badges. At his blog, Sean Phillips has relayed that more original artwork is available for purchase at Splash Page Art, and Criminal and Incognito badges are now available, free with any purchase at his Amazon store.

  • Parker Preview and Dollar Reprints. The graphic novel I'm most looking forward to is Darwyn Cooke's The Outfit, his second adaptation of Richard Stark's Parker novels. We've already reported that the book is due in October, preceded in July with a $2.00 preview of the mini-adaptation of "The Man with the Getaway Face."

    Newsarama recently published a preview of The Outfit, further stoking my interest.

    Finally, on the subject of inexpensive previews, on Twitter this month, Ed Brubaker wrote that "not enough is being said about the awesome one dollar comic reprints marvel and dc are putting out."

    Indeed: I can't even find a complete checklist anywhere online.

    With the release of the Watchmen movie early last year, DC had the uncharacteristically good sense of publishing $1.00 previews of other works that might appeal to people who are just entering the world of comic books -- specifically, full first issues of DC, WildStorm, and Vertigo titles that are already available in collected editions.

    In a way, this marketing campaign has proven to be more successful than the movie that prompted it. The series of previews was originally branded "After Watchmen... What's Next?" and was timed to coincide with the movie's release in theaters and then in DVD. The initiative has been extended at least into 2010 and has been re-branded simply "What's Next?"

    Marvel and Image have followed suit this year with "Marvel's Greatest Comics" and "Image Firsts."

    Over the last two years, and between the three companies, we've seen about 40 one-dollar previews for significant, recent works. I've been collecting the previews, since it's a cheap way to satiate the irrational need for collectin. They highlight how much I really haven't yet read, and they give me an opportunity to give high-profile titles a thorough preview before deciding what to explore next.
In an era flush with questionable business decisions on the part of the major comics publishers, it's good to see a smart move becoming a popular move.

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