Sword of Ages, Gabriel Rodriguez’s (Locke and Key, Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland) five-issue miniseries that is a mixture of sword and planet with Arthurian legend, begins its second issue with Avalon, along with her traveling companions Lancer, Trystan, and Gawyn, traveling atop the Guardian of the Lake (a large dragon) to a small island with a sacred cave, wherein they encounter a chamber of monsters and a legendary sword stuck in a large green gem (Sword of Ages’ parallel to Excalibur and the Sword in the Stone). Meanwhile, the Black Star Templars are shown to be conquerors from the stars, staging a military campaign called “Operation Stormbringer” to bring their particular brand of law to the planet. The White Monks, briefly alluded to in issue one, are formally introduced. Their leader’s son, Lord Calen (who has feelings for Avalon), leads a scouting missing to spy on a meeting of the Black Sun Templars and the Red Clan. The two groups plot a siege against the White Monks, and while attempting to report this information back, Calen is captured.
Gabriel Rodríguez’s Sword of Ages is a new series from IDW, a neo-peplum comic that combines the sword and planet genre with Arthurian legend. Sword of Ages tells a variation of the origin of the fabled Excalibur by placing the story on a different planet (portrayed as being littered with both ancient and futuristic ruins) and concerns the heroine Avalon, who has been raised by tigers and trained by monks. The first issue sees Avalon part from her tiger family to travel with Merlin (blue-skinned in this incarnation) and his black bird Nikola to rendezvous with a team of other adventurers (Trystan, Lancer Benveek, and Gawyn) and gain an audience with the serpentine Guardian of the Sacred Lake. En route, Avalon and company thwart a band of Planet of the Apes-esque slavers and free their prisoners, which introduces Captain Janek, the supposed law and order of the region.
Sherlock Frankenstein and the Legion of Evil is a four-issue miniseries and spinoff from Dark Horse’s Black Hammer series. With the original run of Black Hammer ending at issue thirteen, planning to be resumed with a new series titled Black Hammer: Age of Doom in the spring of 2018, Sherlock Frankenstein acts as stop gap for fans of the series, approaching the Black Hammer world with emphasis on its villains. The original Black Hammer saw Spiral City’s superheroes vanish to a rural farm in an alternate dimension after defeating the Anti-God. Sherlock Frankenstein sees Lucy Weber, the daughter of Black Hammer and also reporter for The Global Planet, investigating the disappearances by questioning the various supervillains of the city, who were left with no adversaries.
Stan Lee’s LA Comic Con 2017 had a variety of panels, reunions, and Q&A sessions lined up in its programming. One particularly nostalgic panel was that of the 1980s cartoon, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, commemorating its thirty-fifth anniversary, which was held Saturday, October 28, at 11:00 a.m. In attendance on the reunion panel were Alan Oppenheimer (Skeletor), Melendy Britt (She-Ra), and Tom Cook (Filmation animator).
There are quite a few ways to celebrate Halloween and the general spookiness of October, such as marathoning scary films and binge-reading horror comics and books. Gamers often turn to playing horror-centric video games during the month. The newly created #horrorgameoct hashtag is being used to call attention to the practice, with gamers announcing their intentions to play popular survival-horror games such as those from the Resident Evil, Silent Hill, and Dead Space series. It is also a perfect opportunity for some to revisit forgotten or cult games, such as Deadly Premonition and Phantasmagoria. It’s even an excuse to play off-beat or periphery scary games too, such as Dr. Franken and Corpse Killer.
As Halloween is fast approaching, the Fanbase Press staff and contributors decided that there was no better way to celebrate this horrifically haunting holiday than by sharing our favorite scary stories! Be they movies, TV shows, video games, novels, or any other form of entertainment, members of the Fanbase Press crew will be sharing their “scariest” stories each day leading up to Halloween. We hope that you will enjoy this sneak peek into the terrors that frighten Fanbase Press!
In 1982, Ridley Scott directed Blade Runner, his vision of a futuristic, dystopian, neo-noir science fiction film which was loosely adapted from the Philip K. Dick novel, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Neon store-front lights reflect in the rain slicked Los Angeles of 2019 as brightly lit dirigibles rumbled across the dark sky, flashing elaborate advertisements overhead. All manners of life – human and replicant – commingle, trying to find meaning and memorable moments that culminate into a comforting identity. Drawing on themes of religion, technology, implications of genetic engineering, and an examination of humanity, Blade Runner has captivated decades of audiences with not one but seven versions of the 1982 film. In honor of the original (or the six other versions) and the highly anticipated Blade Runner 2049 releasing today, Fanbase Press is running a special editorial series to examine the original film and its lasting influence in popular culture.
Harley Quinn’s development – both as a character and as a pop culture artifact – was reflected not just in the animated series, but in other media as well, from toys to comics to video games. While contemporary depictions of Harley Quinn in video games, from LEGO Batman video games to the Arkham series, are common place, her early appearances were not so much. The earliest video games relegated Harley to either cameo roles in cut scenes, or as boss characters, but never both. It would be her appearances in Batman: Vengeance that offered the most fleshed-out, comprehensive video game version of Harley. This essay focuses on the Game Boy Advance version of Vengeance, comparing it with Harley’s appearances in the games that were released before it.
Robert Payne Cabeen has had a creative career penning subversive poetry and screenplays, such as Tainted Treats, the screenplay for Heavy Metal 2000, and Fearworms: Selected Poems from Fanbase Press. Cold Cuts marks Cabeen’s first foray into writing a novel, and much in alignment with his works, it’s both fiendish and funny.
Spotlight panels are often a great feature of a convention’s programming in that they offer special guests with the opportunities to highlight their work, but also to give audience members and fans a Q&A session. Over the weekend, Long Beach Comic Con had a handful of spotlight panels for celebrities and guests such as William Shatner, Dave Gibbons, and Howard Chaykin.