30 Jul 2008

Dreaming of San Diego...

By Matt C
Living in dear old Blighty, I'm used to the Bristol Expo being the place to go for all things comics-related and I can only envy folks across the pond who get regular star-studded convections, the mother of them all being the past weekend's San Diego Comic-Con International. Chances of me making it over there in near future are pretty non-existent unless I get a lottery win or I decide to sell a few internal organs (anyone wanna buy a kidney?).

Thank God for the internet, then: every drop of news appeared near-instantaneously courtesy of the multitude of website correspondents and bloggers in attendance. There was plenty to digest, and although it often comes across as place for studios to pimp their new genre movies, comics’ news wasn't thin on the ground. Here's my pick of the stuff that made me even more jealous of those lucky souls present (and bear in mind this is a comics blog, so look for your Terminator movie news elsewhere!):

- One of the early announcements was also one of the best: Darwyn Cooke will be adapting four of Richard Stark's Parker crime novels into full-length graphic novels for IDW. No, I didn't have a clue who Richard Stark or Parker were either, but a quick search revealed I did have something of an idea: the first novel in the series, The Hunter, was filmed as the excellent Point Blank in 1967! Cooke has been in contact with Donald Westlake (who used 'Richard Stark' as a pen name) so the project’s got the creator-thumbs-up, and Cooke references his work on the Slam Bradley back-stories in Detective Comics some years back as an indication of his love for the crime genre. Put me down for a copy, Mr Comics Shop Man!

- Sometimes it’s a writer (or writers) who bring you to a project rather than the characters themselves. That's the case with
War Of Kings, a cosmic crossover that pits Vulcan and the Shi'ar Empire against Black Bolt and the Inhumans. Normally I wouldn't bat an eyelid at such a prospect but with Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning as writers it has my full attention. If it's anywhere near the quality of Annihilation: Conquest, Nova and Guardians Of The Galaxy then we're pretty much guaranteed a great book.

- Never really got into Green Lantern before Geoff Johns took over, but I now consider it to be one of DC's best books. On the other hand, Flash is a character I've always tried to get into but it's never quite clicked. So, the news that Johns and Ethan Van Sciver - the team who kickstarted my interest in GL with Green Lantern: Rebirth - are taking a crack at reintroducing Barry Allen to the DCU with Flash: Rebirth, has me hoping they can do what they did to Hal Jordan to the recently resurrected Allen.

Neil Gaiman writing an in-continuity Batman story called 'Whatever Happened To The Caped Crusader?'!? Apparently it really is happening, and I'm not sure what I think about it. It'll no doubt be huge but - with the obvious hints to Alan Moore's 'Whatever Happened To The Man Of Tomorrow?' - do we need such a tale, which seems to suggest that a huge reboot for the Dark Knight is on the cards? I guess I'm eager to see what Gaiman does, it's just what comes after that I’m apprehensive of.

Those are just the four of the many announcements that caught my eye (as well as the leaked trailer to X-Men Origins: Wolverine and of course, all the Watchmen movie stuff). One day, maybe I'll get see it all for myself!

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