Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Dark Tower for Phillips in May, Incognito in "July or August."

As I noted earlier, Marvel's solicitations for March and April include no Icon material from Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips. The publisher's May solicitations, published this week at Newsarama and elsewhere, continue that trend.

In addition to the beginning of the "Heroic Age" for Brubaker's Captain America and the debut of his Secret Avengers, the solicitations mention a project that Sean Phillips also announced at his own blog -- Dark Tower: The Gunslinger #1.

"Join Robin Furth, Peter David and Richard Isanove as they welcome superstar artist Sean Phillips (INCOGNITO) into the ka-tet of creators entrusted by Stephen King himself to bring the adult adventures of his most personal creation to life!"

Phillips joins Richard Isanove in creating the interior art and the cover for the debut issue, and he will presumably work on the entire five-part mini-series.

On his Twitter page, Phillips responds to a fan's inquiry about potential delays for Incognito and posts the first clear announcement about what's next for Ed and Sean.

"Incognito returns in July or August"

On his own Twitter page, Ed Brubaker confirms that more of Incognito is "coming soon."

The trade paperback for Criminal: The Sinners hasn't yet found its way to Marvel's solicitations. Trade collections for Brubaker and Phillips' Icon work have historically been released only a month or two after the story arc's last monthly issue, and this delay might be intended to encourage readers to collect the monthly issues, to tie the trade to the return of Incognito, or both. Sean Phillips has already posted work on the cover art (a subdued recoloring of the first issue's cover) and so I'm guessing that the trade paperback will reach stores sooner rather than later -- July, August, probably before the return of Incognito.

The more important thing to note is this.

Going by past trends, the follow-up to Incognito will probably run five or six issues, released no more frequently than once a month, so I figure that the mini-series will run to about the end of the year.

Except for maybe another short-story "emission," the fifth and final issue of Criminal: The Sinners, due in just a few weeks, will almost certainly be the last new material for Criminal until 2011.

To be clear, I quite enjoy Incognito, but the "apocalyptic pulp noir" doesn't have quite the punch of Criminal, and so I'll be anxiously waiting for its return.

Buy Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips comics from

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Blogger televiper said...

This makes me sad. It seems like we only just got Criminal back and now it's leaving us again (for a year at least). That sucks.

I enjoyed Incognito, though I felt it was a little too similar to Sleeper, and will pick it up if it is continued but I really wish Brubaker would just finish up Criminal as it feels like he only has an arc or two left planned anyway.

12:35 PM  
Blogger Bubba said...

Believe me, I hear ya.

I like Incognito, and I think it's better than most new titles, but I don't think it's better than what it replaces. You're right that it's familiar: it's a riff on Sleeper's premise, with art direction that clearly starts with Criminal's three-row page layout.

The series improved with a second reading, and things might get even better with the follow-up, but I still prefer the straight-up pure noir of Criminal.

And I wonder if Criminal's momentum is suffering beyond mere scheduling: "The Sinners" is very good, but so far it hasn't been as gut-wrenching as "The Dead and the Dying" or "Bad Night."

I know that Brubaker's already mentioned what the last story arc will be, but I hope that he has many more stories to tell, because the universe he's spent nearly two dozen issues to create, is only now really begin to unfold.

But when I glance back at Brubaker's initial plans to interrupt Criminal only "every few arcs," and when I look back to a post I wrote early on about the pitfalls of this project, I can't help but wonder whether things might have gone a little off the rails.

11:20 AM  
Blogger ADD said...

I definitely things things have not gone according to plan, but that's what Marvel and DC do, they get the talent making so much money on their trademark maintenance that the creator-owned stuff HAS to go on the back-burner sooner or later.

11:43 AM  
Blogger Jacob Abrahams said...

I don't know where else to pose this question, so I'll ask it here. Is there any indication that Sleeper will be released as a one volume hardcover omnibus or are the season paperbacks the best version that I can hope for?

10:53 AM  
Blogger ADD said...

My guess is that if the movie actually gets made, an Absolute edition is a virtual certainty. Until then, the season TPBs seem to be as good as it's likely to get.

10:54 AM  

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