CCI, Day 2: Dick Tracy, Scarface, Angel, Spike & More to Come from IDW

Sat, July 22nd, 2006 at 12:00am PDT

Comic Books
Jeremy Goldstone, Guest Contributor

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IDW made its name publishing horror and movie license comics. From the upcoming comics they showed at their panel on Friday at Comic-Con International in San Diego, they aren't deviating much from those genres, with a few key exceptions.

The biggest exception probably being "The Complete Chester Gould's Dick Tracy."

"Much like what Fantagraphics did with Charles Shulz's 'The Peanuts,' we're taking every strip Chester Gould did, remastering them, and putting them in fancy hardcover editions," said IDW's Chris Ryall. In addition, novelist and comic book writer Max Allan Collins, who took over the writing chores on "Dick Tracy" for Gould in the 1970s, will be supplying material about Gould and Tracy.

IDW will also be publishing Eric Shanower's "Adventures in Oz" in a collected trade paperback. The stories, most of which were published in the 1980s, have been remastered and recolored and includes sketches and bonus material from Shanower.

"Sparrow," a new line of art books, is a totally new project from IDW. They are smaller hardcover books designed to be sold in stores like Hot Topic, featuring work from artists like Ashley Wood and Phil Hale.

IDW is continuing their CSI comic line with the previously announced, "CSI: Who Killed Rich Johnston?" written and drawn by Steven Grant and Stephen Mooney. Taking place in the CSI universe, the CSI team has to solve the murder of the comic book gossip columnist, who is published right here on CBR.

"Rich has made a lot of enemies in this business, so we thought wouldn't it be fun if we killed him?" To punctuate the point, Ryall pulled off his shirt, to reveal a t-shirt featuring Johnston's stoplight image and the words, "I KILLED RICH JOHNSTON." The suspect list reads like a who's who of comic book luminaries, including Ryall, Tim Bradstreet, Chuck Dixon, Phil Jiminez, Adam and Andy Kubert, Erik Larsen, Jim Mahfood, Ed Brubaker, Joe Quesada, Greg Rucka, Marc Silvestri, Gail Simone, Beau Smith, Ashley Wood, Ben Templesmith, and The Man himself, Stan Lee.

"And I promise, one of these people will kill Rich," Ryall said. "It's not going to end up being the Comicon parking lot attendant."

"24: Nightfall," the first "24" miniseries from IDW, is essentially the origin of Jack Bauer.

"Operation Nightfall was never seen, but has been talked about in 24, especially in the first season," explained writer Mark Haynes. "We're finally able to tell this story about Jack Bauer's life, his mission to assassinate Viktor Drazen. It really sets up his history and shows a lot about his character." The five issue miniseries, while still keeping the time clock concept from the TV series and previous one-shots, is not being used as rigidly this time around. "In the one shots, we had every spread be an hour," Hayes said. "This time, we're not going to shoehorn the clock in so much, and get into the meat and the drama more."

New to IDW is "Scarface: Scarred for Life," a five-issue sequel to the Al Pacino movie written and drawn by John Layman and Dave Crosland. The book takes place in an alternate version of the movie where Tony Montana survives the attack by the Colombians on his mansion and has to rebuild his criminal empire.

"The book is a bit freeing for us, because all we're required is to draw Scarface, but it doesn't have to look like Pacino, so we're able to do a graphitti-like image," Layman said. "Also, we're trying to beat Garth Ennis' record for using the word 'fuck,'" joked Ryall. You can read more about this series by reading our interview with Layman.

IDW has a whole slate of Transformers projects ready for the next few months. Although they weren't able to give any details on any adaptations of the movie, new books include reprints of the old Marvel Transformers issues, and a four-issue new adaptation of the original Transformers movie by former Marvel Transformers writer Bob Budiansky and Don Figueroa, which expands on scenes in the movie.

Other Transformers projects include "Stormbringer," which takes place on Cybertron, "Beast Wars: The Gathering," and a series of one shots featuring characters that aren't used that often, by writer Simon Furman. Characters include Shockwave and Hotshot by Nick Roche, Nightbeat by Mark Bright, and Six Shot and Ultra Magnus. For more on IDW's plans, click here.

On the horror front, "Zombies!" is a five-issue mini from Shane McCarthy and Chris Bolton.

"We're not aspiring for high art on this one," Ryall said. "It's just zombies."

Continuing with the undead action is Ryall and Woods' "Zombies vs. Robots."

"With no exclamation point," Ryall said. Again confessing to not reaching for high art, Ryall explained it takes place in a world where all humans have been eaten by zombies except one, which is being protected by robots.

Falling somewhere between horror and licensed characters are Angel and Spike. Angel is getting a new anthology book, "Masks," with stories from Christopher Golden, Jeff Mariotte, James Patrick and Scott Tipton, and art by David Messina, Stephen Mooney, Sean Murphy, Steph Stamb.

Spike is getting a five-issue mini, "Asylum," by Brian Lynch and Franco Urru.

"Spike gets committed to an asylum for the supernatural," explained Lynch. "It's kind of like Scientology meets the supernatural. It's fun, you should buy a copy."

The two characters team up in "Angel: Auld Lange Syne," by Tipton and David Messina.

"It's a team-up, but the team up doesn't happen until the end, so there are full Spike and Angel stories," Tipton said. "It's kind of like old 1970s superhero action. There's plenty of good old-fashioned demon bashing."

 
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