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KIDS COMIC CON 2013 TAKES OFF ON MAY 11 in New York March 26, 2013

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Family Friendly FREE Event Offers Fun, Excitement and Adventure for All Ages

NEW YORK CITY (March 26, 2013) – Hey kids, parents, teachers, and comic fans, the KIDS COMIC CON 7 (KCC 7) is rocketing to earth on Saturday, May 11 at Bronx Community College from  10 a.m to 6 p.m.

Why the outer space reference?

Because this year our theme is: Sci-Fact to Sci-Fiction, Where Creativity and Technology Meet. 

Kids will be able to meet with over 30 acclaimed artists who use different forms of science and technology to create comics, animation, video games, puppets, and more. And this year admission is totally FREE — making the KIDS COMIC CON one of the best entertainment values around! Artists will also join Ronald McDonald House NY, and others, in its fight for children, against cancer.

KCC creator and founder Alex Simmons, writer for Archie, Scooby-Doo, and Tarzan, among others, said he’s particularly excited about this year’s KIDS COMIC CON.

“Since 2007 our annual event has introduced thousands of kids and families to the power of imagination and creativity,” he said. “Our road shows have traveled from Upstate New York to Miami Florida, to Senegal in Africa. This year, we’re developing programming for students and teachers in the West Indies, and we’ll be screening a documentary about comics in Guatemala.”

Featured events include:

KCC 7 Patrolled By NEW CRUSADERS! This year, the creators of Archie Comics’ sci-fi superheroes will be there to answer questions, sketch, and share an inside peek of their creation.

Around the Corner to SESAME STREET! Come meet members of the Jim Henson/Sesame Street creative team. Learn how they work with the Muppets, and much more.

Expand your reading library with an on-site SCHOLASTIC BOOK FAIR! Representatives from Scholastic will be on hand with special offers just for KCC attendees!

Notable guests at this year’s event include veteran editors Jim Salicrup and Joan Hilty, artist Rick Parker, Louis Mitchell and Diana Leto from Sesame Workshop, Karen Falk from the Jim Henson Company and a variety of writers, artists and editors from Archie Comics including  Suzannah Rowntree, Alex Simmons, Jamal Peppers, Alitha Martinez, Ryan Jampole, Joe Morciglio, Angelo DeCesare and Paul Castiglia.

“KCC’s primary goal is to promote reading, creativity, and exploration in kids’ lives,” Simmons added. “Now more than ever it is imperative that young people embrace a continuous flow of positive ideas, skills, and outlets for their thinking as well as self-esteem. This year we’ve found even more people who share these ideas and goals so come share the day and the magic.”

The 2013 KIDS COMIC CON is set for May 11 at Bronx Community College, 181st Street and University Avenue, Bronx, NY from 10 a.m to 6 p.m. Admission is FREE. For additional information, please visit www.facebook.com/KidsComicCon.

 

KCC_Poster_2013-Final

ARCHAIA ANNOUNCES VOLUME 2 OF THE EISNER AWARD-WINNING ANTHOLOGY ‘MOUSE GUARD: LEGENDS OF THE GUARD’ March 21, 2013

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Mouse Guard Legends of the Guard v2 001
For Immediate Release
ARCHAIA ANNOUNCES VOLUME 2 OF THE EISNER AWARD-WINNING
ANTHOLOGY ‘MOUSE GUARD: LEGENDS OF THE GUARD’
‘Mouse Guard’ creator David Petersen invites a new group of creators to come and play in his sandbox in this new, four-issue miniseries!

Los Angeles, CA (March 20, 2013) – New legends will be forged! Award-winning publisher Archaia Entertainment is excited to announce the launch of Volume 2 of the Eisner Awardwinning anthology miniseries Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard. The first of four issues is set to debut in May 2013. Mouse Guard is the best-selling fantasy comic book series created by Michigan-based David Petersen about a group of elite warrior mice who serve to protect and guide the common mice under their care.

“After winning the Eisner Award for the first volume, the talent that David has brought to the table for the second volume of Legends is incredible,” said Stephen Christy, Editor-in-Chief of Archaia. “Between industry legends like Stan Sakai, Bill Willingham, and Rick Geary to amazing up-and-comers like Cory Godbey, Mouse Guard fans are going to have a lot to look forward to in this miniseries.” As in the first volume, Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard Vol. 2 finds a group of mice at the June Alley Inn trying to outdo one another in a storytelling competition, spinning typically fantastic tales of the Mouse Guard and their adventures. After all, the mouse that tells the best story gets their bar tab cleared! Petersen writes and illustrates the tavern scenes, while each contributor (or team of contributors) writes and illustrates the different mouse tales.

Petersen has assembled another all-star lineup for this four-issue miniseries. The contributors to issue #1 of Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard Vol. 2 include Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo), Ben Caldwell (The Dare Detectives!), and the team of writer Nick Tapalansky and illustrator Alex Eckman-Lawn (Awakening). Subsequent issues will include contributions from Christian Slade (Korgi), Rick Geary (The Adventures of Blanche), Jemma Salume (Unicorn Life Cycle), Jackson Sze (concept art on films like The Avengers and Iron Man 3), Cory Godbey (Fraggle Rock, the upcoming Jim Henson’s Labyrinth), Eric Canete (Fear Itself: Spider-Man), C.P. Wilson III (The Stuff of Legend), Bill Willingham (Fables), and fantasy illustrator Justin Gerard.

Archaia will release the hardcover collection in late Fall of 2013. “It’s been amazing to have people I admire write and draw stories for Mouse Guard,” said David Petersen. “Getting the behind-the-scenes view of their process is a treat for me. These contributors are putting together some great stories and I’m anxious for the fans to get to see what I’ve been watching come together!”
The first volume of Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard spent five weeks on The New York Times Best Sellers list and won the Eisner Award for Best Anthology in 2011. A new printing will be available for sale in June (ISBN: 978-1-932386-94-3; Diamond Order Code MAR130807). Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard Vol. 2 issue #1 is available for pre-order now at your local comic book shop. To pre-order, provide your retailer with this Diamond Order Code: MAR130802. To find your closest comic book shop, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com.

About Archaia Entertainment, LLC
Archaia is a multi-award-winning graphic novel publisher with more than 75 renowned publishing brands, including such domestic and international hits as Mouse Guard, Rust, Cow Boy, Cursed Pirate Girl, Gunnerkrigg Court, and Artesia. Archaia has also published an entire line of graphic novels in partnership with The Jim Henson Company, including the multiple award-winning Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand and such beloved tales as The Dark Crystal, The Storyteller, and Fraggle Rock. Alongside these celebrated titles, Archaia has released English translations of numerous renowned foreign titles to much fanfare, including The Killer, Sergio Toppi’s Sharaz-De, and The Secret History.
In 2012, Archaia was honored with six Harvey Award nominations, two Harvey Awards, six Eisner nominations, and three Eisner Awards (Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand won for Best Graphic Album–New, Best Penciller/Inker, and Best Publication Design). Also in 2012, Archaia earned both Gold and Silver awards from ForeWord Reviews. Archaia was honored with nine 2011 Eisner Awards nominations and two Eisner Awards for Best Graphic Album and Best Anthology.
In addition to its partnership with The Jim Henson Company, Archaia has forged creative partnerships with storytellers in all facets of the entertainment industry, resulting in print and digital expansions of such noted properties as Bleedout and HAWKEN (video games), Immortals and Planet of the Apes (film), and Space: 1999 (television). Archaia has built an unparalleled reputation within the creator community for producing
meaningful, transformative content, building one of the industry’s most visually stunning and eclectic slates of graphic novels.

Archaia Media Contact:
Mel Caylo
m.caylo@archaia.com
(323) 391-1282

 

 

Ernest & Rebecca Vol. 4 – The Land of Walking Stones March 21, 2013

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Coming March 26, 2013

AUTHOR: Guillaume Bianco
ARTISTS: Antonello Dalena

Rebecca is spending time in the country with her father, and Ernest of course, when things begin to change. Rebecca befriends a boy who is her age, and she sees her sister leave to return to the city on her own. Will Ernest & Rebecca’s friendship survive?

ernest4covsmall

 

Review coming soon!

$10 off DC Comics toys, clothing and more on order more then $50 March 14, 2013

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Want savings on DC Comics products for the kids, adults and everyone in between? DC Comics Fan Family is giving you $10 off orders of $50 or more. Find out how here: http://bit.ly/12Ta02e

Lego City Undercover a lovable goof, and maybe a Wii U system seller March 14, 2013

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By PETER NOWAK

Special to The Globe and Mail

Published Thursday, Mar. 14 2013, 10:13 AM EDT

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/technology/gaming/game-reviews/lego-city-undercover-a-lovable-goof-and-maybe-a-wii-u-system-seller/article9760890/

  • Platform Wii U
  • Publisher Nintendo
  • Developer TT Fusion
  • ESRB Rating E: Everyone
  • Release Date Monday, March 18, 2013
  • Score 9/10

 

Everything you need to know about Lego City Undercover can be found in one line of dialogue, delivered by its hero, Chase McCain, while rooting around inside the jail cell of Rex Fury, his arch-nemesis. The con has escaped from prison and McCain, a tough-as-plastic cop, is investigating his old digs, which are mysterious in their luxuriousness. It seems Fury had something over on the warden, if all the amenities are any indication. There are comfy couches, a hot tub and even a juke box. McCain is taken off guard, but the ever-smirking lawman always has a quip at hand. “A jukebox in a jail cell? I guess that means it’s full of… criminal records.”

It’s the sort of one-liner that might go over poorly at a comedy club or on a TV show, but in the absurdist world of Lego games – where little yellow men build spaceships out of virtual plastic bricks and shoot pigs out of cannons – it’s hilarious. On hearing it, I’m ashamed to admit I did a spit-take all over my coffee table.

It’s just one example of the type of zinger-driven humour that Lego City Undercover brims with. A girl steps off an ocean liner and is asked, “What brings you to Lego City?” She replies: “Uh, this boat?” Meanwhile, McCain – having just rescued a damsel in distress – lands a chopper on a rooftop and proudly proclaims, “I guess now we know that I can fly a helicopter.” When it then takes off by itself and crashes into a nearby building, he sheepishly adds, “And I guess now I know that you have to turn it off after landing.”

Traveller’s Tales Lego games, with their goofy comedy and clever puzzle solving, have for years been a breath of fresh air in a medium dominated by violent shooters and slashers. While the games have been aimed at kids, they’ve also appealed to adults who like their games to be a little lighter on the testosterone.

Lego City Undercover is all of that, writ large. It’s also ironically a spoof of one of the most violent and adult-themed of game franchises, Grand Theft Auto. There’s no doubt about it – this is Grand Theft Lego, minus the hookers and drugs.

McCain patrols the streets of Lego City, a large, open-world sandbox based on the toy franchise and, more or less, real world San Francisco. Traveller’s Tales made strides toward this sort of open-world concept with its previous two games, Lego Batman 2 and Lego Lord of the Rings, but Undercover sets a new level of grandiosity.

Official statements from Nintendo say it’ll take an experienced virtual driver at least 10 minutes to get around the city, but in reality that’s impossible – there’s just too much to see and do. From Chinatown to Albatross Island (more word play, this time on Alcatraz) to the nearby forest and farm lands, the environments are varied, colourful and easy to get lost in while searching for the vast multitude of hidden puzzles and treasures.

Helicopters and speed boats also open up new areas both above and below Lego City. Like any good open-world game, it’s easy and worthwhile to get distracted from your main objectives with all the side missions and collectables.

One big difference in this game is that many of those side missions are actually inaccessible until the main story has been completed. That’s because, as the game’s title implies, McCain must go undercover in his pursuit of Fury, which leads to a closet-full of disguises that would make the Village People proud. Through the course of the story, McCain dresses up as a construction worker, miner, fireman, farmer, astronaut and burglar.

Each disguise confers different special abilities. The astronaut outfit, for example, lets him use teleport pads, while the farmer get-up lets him grab a chicken to glide long distances. Yup, more wacky humour.

As in other Lego games, the puzzles are based around figuring out how to use these various abilities in conjunction with each other to reach new sections of a level or to acquire certain items. The story is carved into chapters, which are the more linear-type levels seen in previous Lego games. McCain must traverse the open city to get to these self-contained chapter levels.

There’s a lot of driving challenges and some cartoonish fisticuffs, neither of which is particularly hard or exciting. Instead, Lego City Undercoverdraws on puzzles and some exhilarating platforming – McCain often has to scale tall buildings – for its thrills.

The humour-packed story is a big draw. Aside from the one-liners, there are also laugh-out-loud spoofs of numerous movies, including The Matrix,Goodfellas and Shawshank Redemption, complete with a voice actor who sounds eerily like Morgan Freeman. Speaking of which, the game features fantastic voice acting in general, with some further great sound-alike performances in specific.

A William Shatner impression-as-voice-over provides updates on the snack situation aboard the Lego space shuttle as McCain explores Apollo Island, while an uncanny double for Arnold Schwarzenegger guides the hero through his training as a construction worker. He does so while spouting goofy lines referencing his movies: “I know, it sounds like you got a raw deal… it’s because you’re expendable.” I was laughing myself silly.

While McCain often has to break the law to perform his duty, this is still very much a kid-friendly, goody-two-shoes game. When he steals a truck, for example, McCain radios his bosses and requests that they compensate the owners. He’s a good guy through and through – I kept waiting for him to question his loyalties, like the cop protagonist did in last year’s similarly plotted Sleeping Dogs, but it never happens.

The story’s finale, which follows another spoof – this time of Aliens – is strangely beautiful. I won’t give away any details, other than to say that the visuals and music combine in a dramatic and moving way. I wasn’t expecting anything like this to show up in a humour-driven game.

Just like its predecessors, the end of the main story is really only the beginning of the game in Lego City Undercover, since it’s only then that players have full access to McCain’s abilities. From there, they can delve back into individual chapters to unlock all the previously inaccessible sections, or solve all the other puzzles scattered around the open world.

The story took me about 14 hours to complete, and the progress meter showed I was only 24 per cent done. I’m a completionist when it comes to Lego games, which means I’ve got many, many more hours to go. We’re talking Skyrim hours.

Lego City Undercover is, at least for now, a Wii U exclusive. So far in the early life cycle of the new console, we’ve seen a number of pre-existing games re-released for it with added features that make use of its advanced controller. In many cases, however, these additions have felt tacked on – they were just extraneous features stretched out to make the gamepad’s many abilities feel relevant.

This game feels a little different, with the gamepad incorporated in several interesting ways. For one, McCain gets video calls from his superiors and allies on it. Rather than popping up on the TV screen, communications take place on the controller – there’s a slight element of immersion by having the audio come out of it.

The gamepad also doubles as a map of Lego City, which saves you from having to pause the action; a quick glance down tells you where you need to go. It also acts as an augmented reality scanner – hidden secrets can be found by holding the controller up and moving it around.

It may be because there’s no other console version to compare against, but the extra abilities here feel natural. While all of those tasks could be accomplished through other means on the PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360, this is one of the better justifications and implementations of the gamepad I’ve seen yet on the Wii U.

That said, is Lego City Undercover a system seller? It certainly should be for kids, but that question depends more on what other games are available. So far, the Wii U has been slow in that regard. More games like this would certainly move Nintendo’s console towards hit status.

In the meantime, I’m glad I can still enjoy games like this. I love aggressive and gritty adventures as much the next guy, but being able to laugh at silly cartoon characters while figuring out addictive and clever puzzles assures me that I haven’t completely become a crotchety old cynic. At least not yet, I haven’t.

Dad Hacks Donkey Kong so His Daughter Can Play as a Girl March 13, 2013

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All together now: awwwww.

by Lucy O’Brien

In one of the more heartwarming stories you’ll read all week, a dad has hacked Donkey Kong so his three-year-old daughter can play as Pauline and save Mario.

Mike Mika is a video game maker by trade, and upon noticing his daughter was disappointed by the default option, simply ‘adjusted’ the classic game so Pauline was now the playable character – complete with a P instead of an M at the top of the screen.

“My three year old daughter and I play a lot of old games together,” Mika wrote on his YouTube channel. “Her favorite is Donkey Kong. Two days ago, she asked me if she could play as the girl and save Mario. She’s played as Peach in Super Mario Bros. 2 and naturally just assumed she could do the same in Donkey Kong. I told her we couldn’t in that particular Mario game, she seemed really bummed out by that. So what else am I supposed to do? Now I’m up at midnight hacking the ROM, replacing Mario with Pauline.”

Check out the video of Mika’s hack below. Story via Reddit.

Article from:

http://ca.ign.com/articles/2013/03/11/dad-hacks-donkey-kong-daughter-plays-as-girl?

JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #1 Tops February Comic Book Sales March 9, 2013

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DC Entertainment sees strong February numbers

BookScan numbers up 65 percent from 2012

Digital-to-print series INJUSTICE sells out in comic shops

BURBANK, CA, March 8, 2013—DC Entertainment (DCE), the largest English-language comic book publisher in the world announced today that JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #1, written by the acclaimed Geoff Johns and drawn by superstar artist David Finch, was the best-selling comic book to specialty retailers in February 2013, according to information provided by Diamond Comic Distributors. This caps off a hugely successful month for DCE – with robust sales coming via comic retail, book trade and digital channels.

 

JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #1 launched in February with a cover featuring the U.S. flag along with 52 variant covers, one for every state plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico. DC Comics is currently sold out of 14 state covers, the digital combo pack and the collector’s bundles containing all the covers.

 

On the bookstore side, February saw DCE publish 15 out of the top 50 titles according to Nielsen Bookscan. Additionally, overall February book trade sales were strong, up 65 percent from last year. Notable sellers include: BATMAN: NIGHT OF THE OWLS, FABLES: CUBS IN TOYLAND Vol. 18 and JUSTICE LEAGUE Vol. 2.

 

On the digital comics front INJUSTICE: GODS AMONG US, the weekly digital-first comic based on the upcoming video game from Warner Bros. Interactive, continues to dominate the charts, selling four out of the top five digital books for the month and seven out of the top 10. BATMAN INC. #8, BATMAN #17 and JUSTICE LEAGUE #17 were also top sellers.

 

“February was a tremendous month for DC Entertainment, and the numbers show that fans are engaging with our stories across all platforms – from digital to retail,” said Diane Nelson, President, DC Entertainment. “We had a record-breaking 2012 in terms of sales, critical acclaim and visibility, including a near 50 percent increase in fan reach through our websites.  Last year also represented our first full year of support and commitment to We Can Be Heroes, our philanthropic initiative to raise funds and awareness for the famine-stricken Horn of Africa. We are incredibly proud of where the business is and where we are headed in 2013.”

 

Hitting The New York Times Hardcover Bestseller lists in February, DC Comics titles included JUSTICE LEAGUE Vol. 2 appearing at #1, WONDER WOMAN Vol. 2, BATWOMAN Vol. 2, GREEN LANTERN: REVENGE OF THE BLACK HAND, BATMAN: THE COURT OF OWLS, Vertigo’s THE BOOKS OF MAGIC: DELUXE EDITION, and backlist favorites like BATMAN THE KILLING JOKE and ABSOLUTE BATMAN & ROBIN: BATMAN REBORN.

 

While over on The New York Times Paperback Bestsellers lists Vertigo’s FABLES vol. 18 arrived on the list at #1 and DC Comics JUSTICE LEAGUE vol. 1, SUICIDE SQUAD Vol. 2 and backlist favorite WATCHMEN all made appearances in February.

 

Earlier this month, DC Entertainment was acknowledged as the recipient of several Gem Awards including Comic Book Publisher of the Year, Backlist Publisher of the Year and Toy Manufacturer of the Year for 2012 for DC Collectibles. Notably, DC Collectibles spotlighted the We Can Be Heroes initiative with their We Can Be Heroes Justice League 7-Pack, which saw 10 percent of proceeds go to providing relief for the drought and famine in the Horn of Africa. The Gem Awards are recognized within the comic book industry as the pinnacle of sales achievement from Diamond Comic Distributors, the world’s largest distributor of comics, graphic novels and pop culture merchandise.

 

The print comic book version of INJUSTICE GODS AMONG US #2 went back to press for a second printing, while over at DC Comics’ mature readers imprint Vertigo, DJANGO UNCHAINED #1, based on the Academy Award-winning Best Original Screenplay by Quentin Tarantino, went back to press for a third printing.

 

About DC Entertainment: 

DC Entertainment, home to iconic brands DC Comics (Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman, The Flash), Vertigo (Sandman, Fables) and MAD, is the creative division charged with strategically integrating its content across Warner Bros. Entertainment and Time Warner.  DC Entertainment works in concert with many key Warner Bros. divisions to unleash its stories and characters across all media, including but not limited to film, television, consumer products, home entertainment and interactive games. Publishing thousands of comic books, graphic novels and magazines each year, DC Entertainment is the largest English-language publisher of comics in the world.  In January 2012, DC Entertainment, in collaboration with Warner Bros. and Time Warner divisions, launched We Can Be Heroes—a giving campaign featuring the iconic Justice League super heroes—to raise awareness and funds to fight the hunger crisis in the Horn of Africa.

What is friendship all about? My Little Pony USB = Friendship is magic! March 9, 2013

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What is friendship all about? My Little Pony X MIMOBOT = Friendship is magic! | Mimoco.

Graphic Novel Review – Mermin from Oni Press March 9, 2013

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Mermin

Mermin Book One: Out of Water

Story and illustrations by Joey Weiser

From: Oni Press

On the back cover:

“MERMIN the MERMAN from MER!?” That’s the question Pete and his friends ask after finding
the fish-boy washed up on the beach! Mermin just escaped the undersea kingdom of Mer, and is
ready to have some fun on dry land! But why would this aquatic kid be afraid to swim? Perhaps it
has something to do with the fishy pursuers who have followed him from the depths below!

 

The story opens with Mermin waking up on the beach being stared at by 3 kids. He’s happy to have escaped from the Kingdom of Mer. He fights off a shark and is offered a place to stay with one of the kids. Mermin tries to fit in with the other kids and even attends school with them. However, he just doesn’t seem to fit in very well and gets into some trouble with the principal and teachers. He’s been followed to dry land by 3 mysterious fishes that seem intent on capturing him and bringing him back to the sea. While they track him down, Mermin and his human friends have a few problems of their own as Mermin tries to fit in. Eventually, the three pursuers catch up to him and attempt to bring him home. However, Mermin wants nothing to do with it and battle breaks out on the piers and endangers his friends.

I like this book for the simple story telling with out to much extra stuff. The story progresses nicely and logically if you think of Mermin like a new kid in the neighbourhood and he’s trying to fit in. Sure he’s not human but he’s still a kid and just wants to fit in and have fun. The illustrations are cute but expressive. They convey the right kinds of emotions and sense of movement. At times, it’s like reading a newspaper comic-strip but one of the good ones.

Is it Right for Kids? Sure is. this is an all ages book that will entertain kids and will also be enjoyable for adults that read it. I would recommend it for kids 10 and under. Older kids might find it a slow read but could still enjoy it.

DC Comics announces new Family Friendly website March 7, 2013

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From DC Comics:

We are excited to announce a new section of DCComics.com and it’s dedicated to all our young super hero fans! You won’t want to miss the exclusive deals, activities and news in the new Fan Family section of DCComics.com: http://bit.ly/DCFanFamily