Max Landis' New Comic, "Green Valley," Presents a Fantasy-Free Tale of Knights and Redemption
Happy Free Comic Book Day! It’s been a while since I’ve been able to get into the blogging swing, but I couldn’t help but share a bit of how our best holiday went for this CBR Staffer in Michigan (or you can catch up with my FCBDs past from 2010, 2011, 2012 or 2014).
In years past, I tried to hit as many shops as humanly possible. And while having a kid has severely hampered my ability to drive halfway across the state in search of rad shops to be a patron of, I was still able to hit my three favorite spots this year – starting with my most frequent Wednesday stomping grounds at Ypsilanti’s Fun 4 All!
This store has maybe the best placement and space combo of any shop I’ve ever seen – situated right in between a Target and a major grocery store where tons of people are constantly shopping anyway and (I assume from what I was like at 10) being begged by their kids to stop in. And there were a ton of families in attendance when I popped in this morning right around the store’s opening. I couldn’t nab a lot of pictures inside since I was carrying a 1-year-old, but aside from folks picking up freebies and buying new comics & merch (which you should always do on FCBD), my pal and store manager James had recruited someone to wear a Deadpool mask over business-casual combo. He was having a very passionate discussion with a little girl about the names of the Star Wars droids.
Whenever I head out for the big May Saturday every year, I make sure to nab a few of the books that I think shops are likely to run out of before the day is through. This year, that meant the annual Tick one-shot from New England Comics (so glad that has become their new publishing tradition, though I’m hoping for more new material when the Amazon show gets underway) and the clever Pink Panther issue from incoming publisher American Mythology. They seem to be gearing up for some big stuff for the rest of the year.
Next up, I drove down the road to Ypsi’s other great shop: Stadium Comics & Cards. This is an old school shop in the best way possible. Plenty of back issues and a killer dollar bin alongside lots of other comic and collectible-related stuff. The store was bumpin with a good mix of kids & families and adult comic fans. Plenty of folks at least rock a comics t-shirt on FCBD, but one customer came complete in a killer dress screenprinted with some old Nick Cardy Detective Comics covers. But in general, it was a solid crowd:
One of the other things I love about how Stadium runs their FCBD is that they put out any leftover issues from year’s past out. So there are always great finds if you keep your eyes peeled. This year, along with both the new offerings from Marvel and Drawn & Quarterly, I got an old Dark Horse Hot Stuff reprint from a past Halloween comics giveaway.
The manager at this store was telling one of the customers how people frequently come in and try to cheat the “limit of 3″ comics rule. What is wrong with people?!? In any event, I was able to pick up some back issues I needed and some rad stuff out of the dollar bin (classic DC Powerpuff Girls and the final issue of Y: The Last Man which I don’t think I’ve read since it came out). The people in the above pic where doing some cosply, and they ended up following me to my third and final stop…
Ann Arbor’s famed Vault of Midnight! The Vault is a store with a deserved national reputation, and they’ve been expanding of late with a Grand Rapids location opening last year and a Detroit store getting going just a few days ago (I’ve been meaning to hit up both but haven’t found my chance yet). So it should come as no surprise that there was a line down the street. But what was shocking was that the manager told me people started lining up before he got there at 7:45 this morning…even though they didn’t open until 10! That sounds insane to me, but I guess the “first in line” phenomenon is the kind of thing people just like celebrating no matter if there’s a huge benefit to being first or not.
Vault advertised their event with a specially made poster drawn by Carolyn Nowak, and it looked sharp as hell, but the other noteworthy thing about how they run their FCBD is that they partner with other local business on the main drag in Ann Arbor. So if you get a FCBD bag from the shop and go into the ice cream parlor or a few other places, you’ll get a solid discount there as well. It’s smart marketing, and you end up seeing a lot of people walking around downtown with comics and food and coffee and what not.
Despite the line, the store employees did a good job of managing the crowds, and there was plenty of browsing room once you got in. Vault placed out lots of product that could draw the eye of all sorts of comic fans including a book shelf full of Omnibus editions, a table display of Marvel movie tie-ins and a Dan Clowes table.
They also had a special one-shot promoting the upcoming Ann Arbor Comics Arts Festival. The recently rebranded show has always been a killer weekend held at the local library with free admission for all, and I think it’s going to draw a lot of attention when it arrives on June 18 and 19 this year.
All in all, my family made out like freaking bandits for this year’s Free Comic Book Day, and I’m already pumped up for next year’s event. When you get done with your own excursions, Tweet us photos and stories from your own Free Comic Book Day to the @CBR Twitter page, and we’ll share some of them right here!
The entire team at Comic Book Resources would like to wish a hearty congratulations to Managing Editor Albert Ching for completing his first half marathon at yesterday’s Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon at Disneyland.
A number of comic book luminaries also completed the race including Kelly Sue DeConnick, Joshua Hale Fialkov, Sam Humphries and more. Congrats to all the runners!
This Saturday from 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM, I’ll be guest hosting my very first talk radio show on KFI AM 640, More Stimulating Talk, discussing pop culture/comics culture!
As many of you know I have a background in radio and spent seven years working at KFI behind the scenes as a board op, sound designer and finally as the producer of the Phil Hendrie Show. Fourteen years ago I left KFI to focus on CBR and my other business full time, but have stayed in regular contact with many at the station. I’ve even been a guest on the station many times talking about the massive success of so many superhero films over the years.
This is very different for me as for the first time I’ll be in front of the microphone on the radio. I’m incredibly excited and honored to have been asked and a wee-bit nervous! I think I’ll do fine — my years in front of the camera talking with comic creators, actors, producers, directors, etc., on CBR TV has prepped me well, but talk radio is an entirely different beast. It’s very interesting switching gears and finding ways to talk about comics culture with a very mainstream listening audience, but I’m helped in a big way by the fact that these days EVERYONE, on some level, is a geek!
I have some great guests from comics and television lined up, including comic creator Rob Liefed to explain to the world at large who Deadpool is and why they should get excited about the upcoming Fox Studios film. Archie Comics Publisher Jon Goldwater will be on to talk about the very different sort of stories they publish today compared to years past. And Marvel’s Head of Television Jeph Loeb will join me to talk all things “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “Agent Carter” and “Daredevil.”
I hope you’ll listen this Saturday and think good, positive, energy boosting thoughts for me! I’m going to need it!
That Valiant sent delicious baked goods and milk wouldn’t normally be cause for alarm, but the timing of this package is awfully curious… One of our current polls asks which publisher’s 2013 output readers are most thankful for — and Valiant is currently in the lead. How could this be anything but an attempt to sabotage the contest and ensure their victory?
Though the card accompanying the cookies said it was meant to celebrate CBR Executive Producer Jonah Weiland’s recent birthday, this newsman remains unconvinced. And if there’s more of this kind of underhanded attempt to sway the poll… well, then Valiant should probably send more cookies to my home address for further investigation.
You may have read earlier this week that CBR’s blog Robot 6 won a Harvey award for Best Biographical, Historical or Journalistic Presentation last weekend! Today, the award has arrived and it’s now on display in the CBR office. Take a look.
We had to separate CBR’s two Eisner Awards (2009, 2011 Best Journalism) form the Harvey because they were fighting. The creepy “The Conjuring” doll seems to have kept them apart. Here’s a close up, with a photobomb appearance by Senior Editor Albert Ching.
Special thanks to R6’s Tim O’Shea for shipping it to the office and for accepting the award on the team’s behalf.
The CBR offices are located in the Laemmle Theater building in the NoHo Arts District in Los Angeles, California. It’s a small building that’s home to a seven screen movie theater, a Chipotle (oh, man, do we love burritos!), CBR and Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Krikorian’s field office. There’s not a lot of traffic in our hallways, but enough that we thought, “HEY, WE HAVE TO TAKE THE PULSE OF THE BUILDING ON THIS BEN AFFLECK BATMAN NEWS!!!!” Well, it wasn’t quite that dramatic, but close.
We put our nifty white board on the door to our suite and asked the question of anyone walking the halls since last Friday. Here are the results.
What have we learned from our super scientific survey? That our hallway is far more supportive of Ben Affleck as Batman than the Internet as a whole is. HALLWAY FTW!
Team CBR might be planning their own in-studio pub crawl to celebrate the opening of “The World’s End.” I think Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, & Nick Frost would approve, don’t you? Thanks to Focus Features for sending these over — they’ll be properly used in the CBR Speakeasy, for sure.
Got a lovely present from the folks at Marvel today — this special variant of “Infinity” #1 (in stores tomorrow, August 14th) featuring a cover by Adam Kubert, signed by we THINK Hickman (can anyone tell based on the photo).
It also includes this little pitch by series editor Tom Brevoort, which we thought we’d share with you all (transcript below). Enjoy!
I could sing you the song and dance, but you’ve heard it all before, right? You know how it goes. So let me stick to the facts.
INFINITY is the first crescendo to the uber-story that Jonathan Hickman has been fashioning since the beginning of the MARVEL NOW! AVENGERS and NEW AVENGERS titles. Everything has been building to this!
INFINITY crosses the length and breadth of the Marvel Universe to unite characters from all spheres of operation against not one but two mighty threats! This is the Marvel Universe unified as never before!
INFINITY heralds the return of the Mad Titan, Thanos, to center stage after a long absence (not to mention a much-talked-about end-of-movie teaser.)
INFINITY alters the landscape of the Marvel Universe meaningfully, and sets up the storytelling cycle that will carry us through 2014 and beyond!
INFINITY is illustrated by three of the finest artists in the field, Jim Cheung, Jerome Opena and Dustin Weaver. All three are motivated by intense competition with the others — none of these guys wants to be the third-best artist on the project, and it shows on every page they’ve drawn!
Thanks for all you’ve done to make MARVEL NOW! the great success that it’s been! Here’s the first big payoff, both figuratively and literally! Welcome to INFINITY!
SVP – Executive Editor
Editor – Infinity
Our friends at LIONSGATE sent over a Comic-Con care package filled with water, pens, note pads, sun screen, hand sanitizer, a Subway gift card and more, plus this freaky ass mask from YOU’RE NEXT that CBR video producer Remy Minnick was kind enough to wear. We’re making him wear it all day today as he toils away on our Comic-Con schedule. It’s not awkward at all!
On October 31st, 2012, CBR moved out of our tiny little office in Hollywood. We outgrew the 550 sq. ft. space in the almost 90 year old building. Then, the office’s ownership changed, improvements to the aging building were slow to come, parking became an inescapable nightmare and rent was ridiculous. Time for a change.
In December of 2012, we moved in to our new space in the NoHo Arts District, in a brand new building with plenty of parking, great access to public transportation (the NoHo Metro station is a block away) and based in a really exciting part of the city filled with great energy. More importantly, we have triple the space of the previously space, allowing me to finally realize the kind of studio I’ve always wanted.
Jonah Weiland sits down with Arrow’s own Marc Guggenheim in this wonderful panorama shot of the brand new CBR Speakeasy. — -Remy Minnick -Production Coordinator-
Hey CBR Readers!
Just a quick note to say that CBR is migrating to a new, much faster server this Sunday, June 9th, at 9:00 AM Pacific time. This will mean the main CBR site — www.comicbookresources.com — will be intermittently unavailable from 9:00 AM until 10:00 AM.
Lately, all the CBR servers have been pummeled by increased traffic and we only see that increasing, especially with Comic-Con International in San Diego on the horizon. To deal with that, first we’ll move CBR to this new server. Once CBR is on its new server, we’ll prep the old CBR server so we can move the CBR blogs to it. The server the blogs are on is seriously slow and even the two-year old CBR server is 5x faster than the current blog server. We expect to move the CBR blogs on Thursday, June 13th — possibly sooner. We’ll let ya know.
Thanks for your patience, everyone. We hope you’ll be happy with the faster response times to come!
— Jonah Weiland
The management of the building the CBR offices are located in have allowed us to decorate the hallway with movie posters of our choosing. We reached out to friends around town, got some comic book movie posters from them and, well, here’s a look at all the posters we’ve hung outside our suite — but one of these is not like the other!
Special thanks to Michelle at Laemmle’s Noho for the use of that final Avengers poster — how amazing is that?
Friday May 3rd, CBR hosted a “soft launch” of our new Speakeasy, where we’ll entertain and film upcoming interviews. Here’s six seconds from the party, which saw almost 50 people come in and out throughout the evening. Thanks to everyone that stopped by!