Category Archives: Store News

May 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

The New World #1

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(W) Ales Kot (A/CA) Tradd Moore, Heather Moore (CA) Tom Muller

Publisher: Image Comics

The United States of America-after the Second Civil War. 
Two lovers meet. One: a straight-edge vegan hacker anarchist boy with a penchant for messing with the State. The other: a chaotic, hedonistic cop with a reality TV show and a license to kill. This really shouldn’t happen-and yet, somehow, it does. And soon, the entire state of New California is after them.

This ballistic sci-fi action romance miniseries-in the vein of Mad Max and Romeo and Juliet-from ALEŠ KOT, TRADD MOORE, and HEATHER MOORE begins with a massive-sized debut issue, and features a backup comic introducing the talents of AARON STEWART-AHN and SUNANDO C!

Look at that cover. Tom Muller’s designs (especially when coupled with great like this) just has a way of oozing style. I love it. Also, give me some more of them good, good Ales Kot “America is going off the rails and here’s what it could look like in this not-out-of-the-question, semi-dystopian, near future” books.

 

Catwoman #1

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(W/A/CA) Joëlle Jones

Publisher: DC Comics

The wedding night’s barely over, but Catwoman’s back on the streets, this time to expose a copycat who’s pulling heists around Gotham City. As Selina cracks the whip on her former criminal cohorts, she’s attracting unwanted attention from one of Gotham’s most dangerous groups. The mob? Nope. Try the GCPD. And as if the Bat-Bride didn’t have enough problems, don’t miss the debut of an all-new villain determined to make trouble for all nine of Selina’s lives. Don’t miss the start of an all-new monthly series written and illustrated by Eisner Award-nominee Joëlle Jones!

When it was announced that Joëlle Jones was going to be writing and drawing the new Catwoman book, it just made sense. Jones’ style is perfect for the aesthetic and tone of Catwoman. If you’ve never read her Ladykiller series, go pick that up now.

 

Captain America #1

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(W) Ta-Nehisi Coates (A) Leinil Francis Yu (CA) Alex Ross

Publisher: Marvel Comics

IT IS WINTER IN AMERICA. 
For over 70 years, he has stood in stalwart defense of our country and its people. But in the aftermath of Hydra’s takeover of the nation, Captain America is a figure of controversy, carrying a tarnished shield…and a new enemy is rising!
Who are the Power Elite? And how do they intend to co-opt and corrupt the symbol that is Captain America?
Rated T+

Hot off the heels of Infinity War, I’m ready for a new Marvel book and Captain America looks to be the book for that. Ta-Nehisi Coates has done a spectacular job with his run on Black Panther and it’s exciting to see him writing another series. I can’t wait to see where he takes a character like Captain America. Also, that Alex Ross wraparound cover is stunning.

 

The Quantum Age #1

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(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Wilfredo Torres (CA) Dave Stewart

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Set in the world of the Eisner Award-winning Black Hammer series-but a thousand years in the future-a collection of superheroes, inspired by the legendary heroes of Black Hammer Farm, must band together to save the planet from an authoritarian regime. A young Martian must find a way to reform The Quantum League to save the world while solving the riddle of what happened to the great heroes of the twentieth century. Black Hammer creator Jeff Lemire (The Terrifics) is joined by Wilfredo Torres (Legion) in illustrating while Dave Stewart (Hellboy) adds his colorist skills to the mix. 
o Based on Jeff Lemire’s Eisner Award-winning series!

The Black Hammer-verse has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it? I absolutely love that Lemire and the other Black Hammer creators have gone the way of Mike Mignola’s Hellboy and really expanded this universe. I will be on board for any books in this universe and cannot wait to get my hands on them.

 

Bone Parish #1

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(W) Cullen Bunn (A) Mustafa Karasu (CA) Lee Garbett

Publisher: Boom! Studios

Cullen Bunn (Empty Man, The Unsound) returns to BOOM! Studios with a chilling necromantic horror story! A new drug is sweeping through the streets of New Orleans.one made from the ashes of the dead. Wars are being fought over who will control the supply, while the demand only rises. While the crime families wage war, users begin to experience terrifying visions of the dead coming back to life-through them.

That sounds sufficiently creepy, doesn’t it? Bone Parish comes out in July but that’s late enough in the summer where I’ll already be starting to think about my favorite month of the year, October. Yes, just the anticipation of that time of year gets me excited for good horror and after reading The Unsound, I know Cullen Bunn is capable of that. In the lead up, I think it may be time for me to finally check out The Empty Man and Regression.

April 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Proxima Centauri #1

(W/A/CA) Farel Dalrymple (CA) Wes Craig

Publisher: Image Comics

“PROXIMA CENTAURI,” Part One-4.243 light-years from Earth, the teenage wizard adventurer Sherwood Breadcoat is stuck in the confounding spectral zone on the manufactured dimensional sphere, Proxima Centauri, looking for escape and a way back to his brother while dealing with his confusing emotions, alien creatures, and all sorts of unknown, fantastic dangers.

In this issue The Scientist H. Duke sends Sherwood on a salvage mission and gives counsel to the troubled boy in his charge.

PROXIMA CENTAURI will be six issues of PSYCHEDELIC SCIENCE FANTASY ACTION COMIC BOOK DRAMA starring Sherwood Breadcoat, “The Scientist” Duke Herzog, Dr. EXT the Time Traveler, the ghost M. Parasol, Shakey the Space Wizard, and Dhog Dahog.

Farel Dalrymple doing sci-fi! Need I say more? This sounds like some pulpy greatness and I can’t wait to get my hands on this as well as Image’s collection of Dalyrmple’s It Will All Hurt.

 

Shanghai Red #1

(W) Christopher Sebela (A/CA) Josh Hixon, Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou

Publisher: Image Comics

Red is one of hundreds shanghaied out of Portland in the late 1800s. Drugged, kidnapped, and sold to a ship’s captain, she wakes up on a boat headed out to sea for years, unable to escape or even reveal who she truly is. Now she’s coming back in a boat covered in blood to find her family and track down the men responsible for stealing her life out from under her. Eisner-nominated writer CHRISTOPHER SEBELA (High Crimes, Heartthrob, We(l)come Back), JOSHUA HIXSON (The Black Woods) and HASSAN OTSMANE-ELHAOU (Felix & Macabber) bring you a tale of revenge, family, and identity that stretches from the deck of a ship outside Shanghai all the way to the bleak streets and secret tunnels of Portland, Oregon.

I’ve been looking forward to this one since it was announced at Image Expo earlier this year. The buzz has been good and I’ve enjoyed what I’ve seen of Hixson’s art. Don’t be fooled by his wild tales of staying in America’s Clown Motel fool you — Christopher Sebela is a solid writer and I’m looking forward to where he and the team are taking this one.

 

Bloodstrike #0

(W/A/CA) Michel Fiffe

Publisher: Image Comics

“BRUTALISTS,” Part One-In the spirit of Bloodstrike’s groundbreaking carnage, the creator behind the indie hit Copra shines a light on Image’s most extreme series. Witness the origin of Cabbot as he launches his undead strikeforce upon the world!

I can’t say I’ve ever had any interest in Bloodstrike before now but putting Michel Fiffe’s talent on this book definitely changes that. Not to mention, with books like Prophet and Supreme: Blue Rose, Image has a stellar track record of reviving 90s Rob Liefeld comics.

 

Luisa Now and Then

(W/A/CA) Carole Maurel (W) Mariko Tamaki

Publisher: Humanoids Inc

A disillusioned photographer has a chance encounter with her lost teenage self who has miraculously traveled into the future. Together, both women ultimately discover who they really are, finding the courage to live life by being true to themselves. Luisa’s sexuality is revealed to be a defining element of her identity, one which both of her selves must come to terms with. A time-traveling love story that turns coming-of-age conventions upside down, Luisa is a universal queer romance for the modern age.

It can be pretty difficult to find avenues of the time travel narrative that aren’t already well worn-down by now. Luisa Now and Then sounds to be setting itself apart and creating something truly unique.

 

By Night #1

(W) John Allison (A/CA) Christine Larsen

Publisher: Boom! Studios

Eisner-Award winning author John Allison (Giant Days) and artist Christine Larsen (Adventure Time) join forces for a story about coming home, discovering identity, and accidently smashing a hole to another dimension.
Aspiring documentarian (and actual Chemistry major) Jane has recently reunited with her former best friend Heather, amateur urban explorer. When a trip into an abandoned industrial building leads them to another world, their plan begins to unfold.create a documentary about the world and become filthy, filthy rich. The other side of the portal is filled with monsters, magic and a chance for a whole new life. All they have to do is step through…

The premise on this seems rad and the preview looks fun. Looking forward to diving in with this team of creators!

March 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Where We Live: A Benefit for the Survivors in Las Vegas

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Mike Allred, Brian Michael Bendis, Ivan Brandon, Kurt Busiek, Amy Chu, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Neil Gaiman, Kieron Gillen, Mike Mignola, Mark Millar, Greg Pak, James Robinson, Gail Simone, Brandon Graham, Rob Williams, Various (A) Rafael Albuquerque, Mike Allred, Paul Azaceta, Cliff Chiang, Geof Darrow, Tess Fowler, Brian Haberlin, Phil Hester, Joëlle Jones, Ariela Kristantina, Jeff Lemire, Jamie McKelvie, Michael Avon Oeming, Sean Phillips, Darick Robertson, Bill Sienkiewicz, Brandon Graham, Javier Pulido, Various (A/CA) J. H. Williams

“On October 1, 2017, Las Vegas, Nevada suffered the worst mass shooting in modern American history, resulting in 58 deaths and over 500 injured. It broke my heart. Las Vegas is my home. I felt like something needed to be done to help in a unique way.”-JH WILLIAMS III, Artist & Curating Editor

This “unique way” was the genesis of the WHERE WE LIVE anthology – a riveting collection of both fictional stories and actual eye-witness accounts told by an all-star lineup of the top talent working in comics today.  All the creators have graciously volunteered their time and talent to help bring some sense to this senseless act and, in the process, raise money for the survivors and their families.

The book will include a variety of perspectives with key themes exploring gun violence, common sense gun control, value of a compassionate society, mental health stigmatization, aftermath of tragedy and how individuals and communities persevere, and an appreciation of Las Vegas as a vibrant community.

WHERE WE LIVE also features stories from local writers and artists as they relate their personal experiences and reactions to this tragedy.

One hundred percent of the proceeds for the WHERE WE LIVE anthology will be donated to an existing GoFundMe campaign for the survivors in Las Vegas.

It’s heartening to see so many creators contribute to this anthology. The description above speaks for itself and I will certainly be putting an order in for this collection.

 

Dismantlers #1

Publisher: Black Mask Comics

(W) Aria Baci (A/CA) Ashely A. Woods

In a galaxy where terraforming is the most common form of real estate development, a highly skilled team of “dismantlers” travels to failed sites and salvages what’s left of them.   

But that’s not the hardest part of their job. Because relationships with each other can be even more complicated than transforming entire planets.  

This is not a story of a prestigious Federation or of a powerful Empire, but of the menial laborers who make it all possible, the unglamorous characters who work behind the scenes of galactic expansion. This is a story of their pillow talk, their break room banter, and their totally unforeseen fist fights with the pirates who jack their job sites out from under them.  

From artist Ashley A Woods (NIOBE: She Is Life) and next breakout writer Aria Baci comes an all new fleet of characters to fall in love with.

That third paragraph’s got me. I love slice-of-life sci-fi. Sure, I like a good space opera but there’s something about using a science fiction setting as a vehicle for telling grounded, human stories. I’m not familiar with this creative team, but I will be looking for their other work while waiting for Dismantlers to hit the shelves. Also, if you like the sound of this one, maybe check out the manga Planetes.

 

Barrier #1-5

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Brian K. Vaughan (A/CA) Marcos Martin, Muntsa Vicente

From the Eisner Award-winning team behind THE PRIVATE EYE, BARRIER is an unconventional drama about violence, language, and illegal immigration…with a shocking sci-fi twist. After debuting on PanelSyndicate.com, this critically acclaimed five-part miniseries finally comes to print, exclusively from Image Comics. After making the massive, 50-plus-page first issue available to mature readers for FREE on Free Comic Day, this special collector’s edition of the first issue is being released in a larger size to match the next four issues being released WEEKLY throughout the rest of May! Printed in its original “landscape” format (side-stapled for convenient shelving!) and graced with gorgeous cardstock covers, each comic is meant to be a durable work of art, and there are no plans for these print issues to ever be collected, so the only way to own your own copies of this groundbreaking story is by supporting your friendly neighborhood comic shop!

It’s cool to see Image Comics putting out more physical editions of Panel Syndicate’s landscape format digital comics. The hardcover collection of The Private Eye turned out really nicely and it will be cool to see these serialized in print. There’s not a whole lot of detail on the actual story here (though you can go check it out on Panel Syndicate’s website) but I’m definitely interested to see this team’s follow up to The Private Eye. As mentioned in the this solicit, you can grab the first issue for free on Free Comic Book Day (the first Saturday in May will be here before you know it!) and the series will be released weekly afterwords. Now I just need to figure out how I’m going to bag and board these!

 

It Will All Hurt

Publisher: Image Comics

(W/A/CA) Farel Dalrymple

ADVANCE SOLICIT! A weird, sad, silly, sketchy, and dreamy watercolor fantasy-action quest in which Alemendra Clementine and her crew of anti-social adventurers all come together on a psych-apocalyptic world to take down an evil wizard. This Eisner Award-nominated webcomic began as a loose stream-of-consciousness exercise and exploration of the comic book medium and takes place in the same world as FAREL DALRYMPLE’s The Wrenchies. Collects IT WILL ALL HURT #1-3, plus all six chapters of the webcomic.

Farel Dalrymple’s work is rad. I’ve really enjoyed just about everything I’ve seen from him and somehow I ended up missing this when it was first published. It’s great to see this getting collected and hopefully it will tide me over until his new series, Proxima Centauri, is printed by Image.

 

Walk Through Hell #1

Publisher: Aftershock Comics

(W) Garth Ennis (A) Goran Sudzuka (CA) Andy Clarke

So these two FBI agents walk into a warehouse… 

Special Agents Shaw and McGregor handle the routine cases nowadays, which is just the way Shaw likes it. She’s pushing 40, a borderline burnout, the ghastly memories of her last investigation still clinging like shadows. McGregor is younger, more dedicated, hanging onto some measure of idealism whatever the world might throw at him.

When two fellow agents go missing inside a Long Beach warehouse, Shaw and McGregor are sent to investigate. But what they find waiting is far from routine, as the local police have already discovered to their cost. Before the night is out, our heroes will encounter terror beyond their most appalling nightmares-in a place where the night may never end at all.

A new kind of horror story for modern America, written by Garth Ennis (Preacher, The Boys, Crossed) and drawn by Goran Sudzuka (Y: The Last Man, Hellblazer)

Yeah, all right. I wanna know what that terror is. The solicit is only laying down a few bread crumbs but there’s definitely potential in this premise and I’ll be giving it a read. Here’s hoping for some original horror!

Panini NBA Player of the Day 2018

The Panini NBA Player of the Day Promotion runs Monday, March 5th  through April 3rd!

The prizes this year are amazing. Winners have chances at:

  • Special Player of the Day Promotional Card Packs [Click here for a preview of this year’s set]
  • A Signed Henry Ellenson (Detroit Pistons) Photo 
  • Store grand prize: A numbered Andre Drummond autograph card plus entry into Panini’s national sweepstakes where you could win a day with an NBA player and a $250.00 shopping spree at Fanfare

How to Play

Step 1 – You can enter by purchasing a pack of 2017-18 Panini brand NBA Cards. This includes popular brands such as Donruss, Hoops, Revolution and others. There is a no-purchase-necessary option as well (ask us to see the official rules for details).

Step 2 – To win, you must open a pack of cards you have purchased in front of a store employee. If you “pull” the highlighted Panini NBA Player of the Day or any of the Wild Cards (Damian Lillard, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant) you are a daily winner and will receive two special promotional packs on the spot.

You can also become an automatic daily winner by purchasing a box of any eligible product. 

Each time you are a daily winner you earn one raffle entry towards being that week’s “weekly winner”.

You may only be a daily winner once a day and up to seven days a week. 

Step 3 – Four times during the promotion we will randomly select one of the daily winners as a weekly prize winner and award a prize package from a kit provided by Panini. Weekly winners will then be put into a raffle to win the store’s grand prize, an autographed Andre Drummond card.

Step 4 – At the conclusion of the 30-day promotion, we will randomly select one of the four weekly winners as the store grand prize winner. The winner will be awarded the grand prize, an autographed Andre Drummond card, and entered into the Panini national sweepstakes where they have a chance to spend a day with an NBA player and a $250.00 shopping spree at Fanfare!

Step 5 – After we have selected our grand prize winner, we will then do a drawing for our runner-up prize, an autographed photo of Detroit Piston Henry Ellenson! All of our daily winners, with the exception of our grand prize winner, will be entered in this drawing!

Here is a look at both our grand prize and our runner-up prize:

 

First up, the grand prize (an autographed Andre Drummon card):

 

And our awesome runner-up prize, an autographed picture from Detroit Piston Henry Ellenson:

Advance Review (Spoiler-free!): Gideon Falls #1

Expected Release Date: Wednesday, March 7th
(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Andrea Sorrentino

A brand-new ongoing series from the acclaimed bestselling creative team of Old Man Logan and Green Arrow! The lives of a reclusive young man obsessed with a conspiracy in the city’s trash, and a washed-up Catholic priest arriving in a small town full of dark secrets, become intertwined around the mysterious legend of The Black Barn, an otherworldly building that is alleged to have appeared in both the city and the small town, throughout history, bringing death and madness in its wake. 

Rural mystery and urban horror collide in this character-driven meditation on obsession, mental illness, and faith.

Very shortly after I wrote about Gideon Falls in the last Previews post, we received an advanced copy for review. I mentioned how much the solicit made me think of Twin Peaks. Part of this may come from me steadily watching the series from the beginning as of this past October, but also because Lemire is an outspoken fan (check out his amazing print of Special Agent Dale Cooper) and The Black Barn sounding quite a bit like The Black Lodge.

Though it does share some similarities with Twin Peaks, I’m happy to report that Gideon Falls is very much its own work of art. And a work of art it is — Sorrentino’s panels are striking as ever with some truly beautiful page layouts. I’ve only seen bits of Sorrentino and Lemire’s work on their Green Arrow run, but reading Gideon Falls has definitely moved that up my backlog.

The first issue does a great job of both setting the scene for the series and introducing its (presumed) two main characters. As mentioned in my Previews post, Jeff Lemire is one of my favorite comic creators and I like to give his new works a shot whenever they come along. Gideon Falls is definitely a book that is staying on my pull list after the first issue and I’m looking forward to learning more about the characters, the world they’re living in, and the greater mystery at hand. Take me back to The Black Barn.

October 2017 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Batman: Creature of the Night #1

Publisher: DC Comics

(W) Kurt Busiek (A/CA) John Paul Leon

Young Bruce Wainwright lost his parents in a violent crime…and in the real world, no superheroes exist to save the day. But as grief and rage builds inside Bruce until he feels he can’t keep it inside anymore, something strange starts taking wing in the Gotham night! Perhaps Bruce’s grief isn’t inside him after all? Modern masters Kurt Busiek and John Paul Leon unite for the spiritual companion to the beloved SUPERMAN: SECRET IDENTITY, putting a new spin you’ve never seen before on the legend of Batman-and the dark emotions that drive him!

Kurt Busiek doing a cape and cowl book. That’s about all I need. Unless I’ve missed it, it seems like it’s been a while since he’s done a book in one of the Big 2 universes. I can’t wait to see what Busiek and Leon do with this span on the Batman origin story.

 

Shiver

Publisher: Viz Media LLC

(W/A/CA) Junji Ito

This volume includes nine of Junji Ito’s best short stories, as selected by the author himself and presented with accompanying notes and commentary. An arm peppered with tiny holes dangles from a sick girl’s window… After an idol hangs herself, balloons bearing faces appear in the sky, some even featuring your own face… An amateur film crew hires an extremely individualistic fashion model and faces a real bloody ending… An offering of nine fresh nightmares for the delectation of horror fans.

If you’re at all a fan of horror, chances are you’ve heard of Junji Ito. If you haven’t, you’re in luck — there are plenty of collections of Ito’s short stories out there to catch up on. It may be a couple months before this is out, but the Halloween season’s got me excited for new Ito!

 

Judas #1

Publisher: Boom! Studios

(W) Jeff Loveness (A/CA) Jakub Rebelka

Emmy and WGA Award-nominated writer Jeff Loveness (Marvel’s Nova) presents an exploration of the classical biblical character, perfect for fans of Preacher and The Goddamned.
Judas Iscariot journeys through life and death, grappling with his place in “The Greatest Story Ever Told,” and how much of his part was preordained. In a religion built on redemption and forgiveness, one man had to sacrifice himself for everyone…and it wasn’t Jesus.

The solicit doesn’t tell us too much, but I’d like to give this a shot. There’s definitely potential to take this premise in some interesting places.

 

Rocko’s Modern Life #1

Publisher: Boom! Studios

(W) Ryan Ferrier, KC Green (A) Ian McGinty (CA) Bachan

Ryan Ferrier (Regular Show) and Ian McGinty (Adventure Time) continue BOOM! Studios’ partnership with Nickelodeon with all-new stories about everyone’s favorite wallaby!
When Rocko faces unemployment, a terrible living situation, and increasingly slim job prospects, he is forced to find out just how far he is willing to go to get a job.
Features a backup story by KC Green where Ed Bighead finds himself in the dentist chair of Dr. Hutchison!

All right, I’ll admit that my interest in this is almost completely fueled by a nostalgic love for Rocko’s Modern Life. That said, it looks like the series is in good hands with this creative team and this will be fun to check out before the new movie comes out.

Ixalan Pre-Release Sign Ups

 

Our online calendar is experiencing technical difficulties and may not be displaying correctly. If you are looking to sign up for any of the Ixalan Pre-Release events, please follow the links below.

 

Friday Midnight Pre-release 
(Technically Saturday morning at 12:01 am): 
[9/23/17 at 12:01 am]
http://fanfareland.com/event/ixalanpre1/

Saturday Morning Pre-release: [9/23/17 at 10:00 am]
http://fanfareland.com/event/ixalanpre2/

Saturday Afternoon Pre-release: [9/23/17 at 3:00 pm]
http://fanfareland.com/event/ixalanpre3/

Sunday Pre-release: [9/24/17 at 12:00 pm]
http://fanfareland.com/event/ixalanpre4/

The Panini NFL Player of The Day Promotion is Back!

POTD2017We are happy to be a participating store in Panini’s NFL Player of the Day Promotion. What is the Player of the Day Promotion? Well, it is your chance to win great prizes including special promotional packs of Panini brand football cards! The winner of our store grand prize will receive a card autographed by none other than the Detroit Lions first round draft pick Jarrad Davis (pictured below)! Not only that, but the store grand prize winner will be entered into Panini’s national contest for a chance to win a day with an NFL player! The fun starts on September 15th and runs all the way until we close on October 16th!

Smaller

 

How to Play

Step 1 – You can enter by purchasing a pack of 2017 Panini brand NFL Cards starting on September 15th and going all the way through October 16th. This includes popular brands such as ScoreCertified, Prestige and others. There is a no-purchase-necessary option as well (ask us to see the official rules for details).

Step 2 – To win, you must open a pack of cards you have purchased in front of a store employee. If you “pull” the highlighted Panini NFL Player of the Day or either of the Wild Cards (Andrew Luck or Leonard Fournette) you are a daily winner and will receive two promotional packs on the spot. You can also become an automatic daily winner by purchasing a box of any eligible product. For each daily win you also will earn one raffle entry to be that week’s weekly prize winner. You may win once a day and up to seven days a week.

Step 3 – Four times during the promotion we will randomly select one of the daily winners as a weekly prize winner and award a prize package from a prize kit provided by Panini. Weekly winners will then be put into a raffle to win the store’s grand prize, an autographed Taylor Decker card.

Step 4 – At the conclusion of the 32-day promotion, we will randomly select one of the four weekly winners as the Panini NFL Player of the Month winner. The winner will be awarded the grand prize (an autographed Taylor Decker card) and additional prizes from the prize kit.

Step 5 – The grand prize winner will also be entered into the national sweepstakes with a chance to spend a day with an NFL player!

May & June 2017 Previews: Carman’s Picks

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Generation Gone #1

(W) Ales Kot, Andre Araujo (A/CA) Andre Araujo, Chris O’Halloran

Publisher: Image Comics

America, 2020. Three young hackers with nothing to lose. A secretive scientist with a plan. One final job. 
What happens when you’re poor, angry, and get superpowers you never asked for? Skins + Unbreakable = GENERATION GONE, sort of- if you also include multiple trips to the sun, weird black goo, a breakup fight inside a nuclear factory, love, hate, anger, loss…and survival. GENERATION GONE is for every kid struggling out there. It’s about what it means to be young in the USA, 2017.

Okay, the time is right. I’m ready for a new Ales Kot book. His work has always had a lot to say about current social issues (just check out the last two sentences in the solicit) so not having a book from him for a while has felt like something was missing. Very much looking forward to this one.

 

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Bottled TP

(W/A/CA) Chris Gooch

Publisher: IDW – Top Shelf

Jane is sick of her dead-end life in the suburbs, and desperate for a change. Her old friend Natalie made it out, living in Japan as a fashion model. Now, as Natalie comes back to town on business, Jane sees a way for her friend to do her a favor… whether she likes it or not.

Can’t say I know much outside of the solicit on this one, but the preview of the art looks fantastic. I will definitely be giving this a shot.

 

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Redlands #1

(W/A) Jordie Bellaire (W/A/CA) Vanesa Del Rey

Publisher: Image Comics

A brand-new horror book from the minds of Eisner Award-winner JORDIE BELLAIRE (PRETTY DEADLY, Vision, Batman) and critically acclaimed artist VANESA R. DEL REY (ZERO, Scarlet
Witch, Constantine) brings you to the sleepy, sunny town of Redlands, Florida. The police are failing to maintain control of their old-fashioned town, and a coven of killer witches plan to take everything from them. This summer, hide your bibles.

New creator-owned horror! That’s usually enough for me to give something a chance, but on top of this one sounding like the right kind of creepy for me, we’ve also got Jordie Bellaire jumping into writing. Her coloring work is excellent and I look forward to seeing her work more with another medium.

 

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Savage Town OGN

(W) Declan Shalvey, Philip Barrett (A/CA) Philip Barrett, Jordie Bellaire

Publisher: Image Comics

In Limerick City, Jimmy “Hardy” Savage is a gangster on the rise, facing trouble from all sides. With the local cops, rival gangs, his best mate, and his mammy all out to stick a knife in him, will the bollocks live long enough to get to the top? More importantly, will he pay me back for that fiver I gave him last week?
  
From the savage minds of DECLAN SHALVEY (All-Star Batman, INJECTION), PHILIP BARRETT, and JORDIE BELLAIRE (Vision, THEY’RE NOT LIKE US) comes an original Irish graphic crime novel that’ll leave you gaspin’…for a pint!

Speaking of Jordie Bellaire and branching out, here we’ve got an original graphic novel with Jordie Bellaire on colors and husband Declan Shalvey on the writing team. You may know Shalvey from his artwork on great books such as Injection and Moon Knight. Great to see him doing some writing, as well!

 

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Ghost Money #1

(W) Thierry Smolderen (A/CA) Dominique Bertail

Publisher: Lion Forge Comics

At the end of the year 2020, a team of military veterans are out to uncover a secret fortune built from the ashes of 9/11 so vast that it could disrupt the entire global economy. Their primary target is a beautiful young billionaire who crosses time zones with disconcerting ease.

The premise here sounds like it could make for a good political thriller. I’m digging the art for this cover and especially the cover for issue two. Looking up the creative team, it seems that Smolderen is an essayist and Bertail is a concept artist. That could be just the right mix for a book like this.

 

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Astro City #47

(W) Kurt Busiek (A) Mike Norton (CA) Alex Ross

Publisher: DC Comics

Meet G-Dog, possibly ASTRO CITY’s most unusual superhero ever. Half man, half dog – but who’s running the show? The answers will change a life, reveal another hero’s deepest secrets, and possibly, just possibly, save the world. Oh, who are we kidding… they’ll definitely change the world. Do you see that handsome face? Also featuring Honor Guard, with guest art by Mike Norton (Revival, Battlepug).

Look at that Ross cover. If you’re not already reading one of the greatest superhero books going, now is the time to jump on. Quick note — this is solicited as #47 even though the artwork says #46.

Feb/March/April 2017 Previews: Carman’s Picks

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Roughneck

Publisher: Gallery 13

(W/A/CA) Jeff Lemire

From the New York Times-bestselling author and award-winning creator of Essex County, Descender, and The Underwater Welder comes an original graphic novel about a brother and sister who must come together after years apart to face the disturbing history that has cursed their family. Derek Ouellette’s glory days are behind him. His hockey career ended a decade earlier in a violent incident on ice, and since then he’s been living off his reputation in the remote northern community where he grew up, drinking too much and fighting anyone who crosses him. When his long-lost sister Beth shows up, on the run from an abusive boyfriend, the two escape to a secluded hunting camp in the woods. There, living off the land, they reconnect with each other, the painful secrets of their past, and their Cree heritage…and start to heal. But Beth’s ex-boyfriend is hunting them. As he circles closer, he threatens to shatter this newfound peace and pull both Derek and Beth back into the world of self-destruction they’ve fought so hard to leave behind. Touching and harrowing, this is a deeply moving and beautifully illustrated story about family, heritage, and breaking the cycle of violence.

Somewhere in the middle of writing (and sometimes drawing) several stellar ongoing series, Jeff Lemire has found time to also produce this original graphic novel for Simon and Schuster’s new imprint, Gallery 13. I will always check out all things Lemire, but the description here has me sold. Lemire really knows how to capture the nuances of nuclear family and I can’t wait to see how that takes shape here.

 

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Black Monday Murders #5 and The Dying & The Dead #4

The books highlighted in these articles are almost always series premieres, but Jonathon Hickman gets a special pass. The Dying and the Dead has been on hiatus for a little over a year and a half and it’s so good to see it regularly solicited again. On top of that, we also see the second arc kick off for Black Monday Murders, a comic that may very well be my #1 of 2016. If you haven’t been reading either one of these books, jump on them now.

 

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Victor LaValle’s Destroyer #1

Publisher: Boom! Studios

(W) Victor LaValle (A) Dietrich Smith (CA) Micaela Dawn

When the last descendant of the Frankenstein family loses her only son to a police shooting, she turns to science for her own justice…putting her on a crash course with her family’s original monster and his quest to eliminate humanity. An intense, unflinching story exploring the legacies of love, loss, and vengeance placed firmly in the tense atmosphere and current events of the modern-day United States.

A story amalgamated from classic horror and modern headlines will take serious craft to pull off. I wasn’t actually familiar with Victor LaValle before hearing about Destroyer, but after looking into his work a bit, I’m definitely interested to see the direction the creators take it in.

 

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Eternal Empire #1

Publisher: Image Comics

(W/A/CA) Sarah Vaughn, Jonathon Luna

JONATHAN LUNA (ALEX + ADA, THE SWORD, Spider-Woman: Origin) and SARAH VAUGHN (ALEX + ADA, Deadman: Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love, Ruined) return with ETERNAL EMPIRE, a fantasy epic!

The Eternal Empress has waged war against the countries of Saia for over one hundred years and now her sights are set on the last country standing. Within the brutal Empire’s workforce, a young woman receives strange visions that give her the courage to escape her fate…or run straight toward it.

I still haven’t read Alex + Ada, but it’s been recommended to me several times since it first published. While I’m keeping that on my reading list, I’m going to jump on Eternal Empire from the beginning this time.

 

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Bug: The Adventures of Forager #1

Publisher: DC Comics

(W) Lee Allred (A/CA) Michael Allred

An all-new Young Animal miniseries begins! Forager is just one of the Hive before he breaks out of his cocoon and finds himself in a mysterious house in an unknown realm. There he meets all kinds of strange creatures: a ghostly girl, a talking teddy bear and otherworldly weirdos that have literally jumped out of his worst nightmares. But these interdimensional oddballs are nothing compared to the evil General Electric, who is on the hunt for a reality-bending metal that could alter the fabric of life itself. To stay one step ahead of him and preserve the multiverse, Forager must travel through alternate dimensions to seek the metal and, hopefully, catch up with that cagey stuffed bear. If he does it, will he finally be able to distinguish himself as a New God?
DC’s Young Animal celebrates Jack Kirby’s centenary with this new six-issue miniseries-and who better to tackle this task than the Eisner Award-winning Allred clan! Featuring scripts by Lee Allred (BATMAN ’66), art by Michael Allred (Silver Surfer) and colors by Laura Allred (Lady Killer), BUG! is truly a family affair.
MATURE READERS

More craziness from DC’s Young Animal. I have really enjoyed the likes of Doom Patrol, Cave Carson Has a Cybernetic Eye, and Shade the Changing Girl. Here’s hoping that Young Animal keeps that momentum for their fifth book in the lineup. Granted I’m not too worried about that because MIKE ALLRED IS DOING THE ART. If you’ve never read anything of his, go grab that X-Statix omnibus right now.

 

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Winnebago Graveyard #1

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Steve Niles (A/CA) Alison Sampson, Stéphane Paitreau, Jordie Bellaire, Aditya Bidikar

SERIES PREMIERE
An American family traveling on vacation finds themselves stranded in a small town with a sinister secret.

There’s not a whole lot to go on beyond the short solicit and cover art, but I’m in. Maybe it’s having just seen Get Out and binge-listening to most of S-Town, but there’s enough here to have me intrigued.

 

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Peter Parker: Spectacular Spider-Man #1

Publisher: Marvel Comics

(W) Chip Zdarsky (A/CA) Adam Kubert

SPIDER-MAN RETURNS TO THE FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD!
The webslinging, wallcrawling wonder returns to New York City in the all-new PETER PARKER: THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN. A companion series to the best-selling Amazing Spider-Man series, Peter Parker is going back-to-basics for big heroics in the Big Apple. Featuring adversaries old and new, be there as Spider-Man returns to his friendly neighborhood for his never ending battle against crime and the dreaed “Parker Luck”.
Rated T

I’ll say it. I’m not a big Spider-Man fan. I don’t dislike him or anything, but I’ve just never been overly interested. In the past few years, the main Peter Parker related things that really grabbed my attention were Spencer and Lieber’s Superior Foes of Spider-Man and Chip Zdarsky’s portrayal of Spider-Man in his Howard the Duck. Well, well. It looks like Applebee’s greatest friend is now getting his very own Spider-Man book. I guess it’s time to see what this spider guy is all about.

 

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Unsound #1

Publisher: Boom! Studios

(W) Cullen Bunn (A/CA) Jack Cole

Ashli’s first day as a nurse at Wiermont Psychiatric Hospital turns into a nightmare as a bloody riot sends her fleeing into the bowels of the hospital. Her descent takes her to a hellish world populated by lunatics and monsters, cloaked in a secret history of black magic and heinous scientific experiments.

I’m always on the lookout for a good horror book. I may be too chicken for horror games and a lot of horror movies, but books are different. Maybe it’s having more control over the material or the less immediate stimulus, but horror books hit the right spot for me. Also, the line “secret history of black magic” makes me think of Black Monday Murders which we’ve established is a very good thing.

 

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Secret Weapons #1

Publisher: Valiant Comics

(W) Eric Heisserer (A/CA) Raul Allen

Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Eric Heisserer (Arrival) joins Harvey Award-nominated artist Raúl Allén (Wrath of the Eternal Warrior) for Valiant’s next prestige format limited series, starring Livewire and an extraordinary new team of heroes! The government has dispatched Amanda McKee – the technopath codenamed Livewire – to investigate the ruins of a secret facility formerly run by Toyo Harada, the most powerful telepath on Earth and her former mentor. In his quest for world betterment at any cost, Harada sought out and activated many potential psiots like himself. Those who survived, but whose powers he deemed to have no value to his cause, were hidden away at this installation. But Livewire, having studied Harada’s greatest strengths and learned his deepest weaknesses, senses opportunity where he once saw failure. A young girl who can talk to birds… A boy who can make inanimate objects gently glow… To others, these are expensive failures. But, to Livewire, they are secret weapons…in need of a leader. Now, as a mechanized killer called Rexo seeks to draw them out, Livewire and her new team of cadets will be forced to put their powers into action…in ways they never could have imagined…

I’m still relatively new to the Valiant universe, but I’ve been really impressed with pretty much everything I’ve read. One of the biggest highlights for me was The Valiant, another event of theirs. Valiant has such a way with portraying the modern superhero, and the fact that the screenwriter for Arrival is on board certainly seals the deal for me. I’m very much looking forward to adding this one to my Valiant collection.