archaia


ARCHAIA WANTS YOU TO GET HOOKED ON AN ‘INTERESTING DRUG’

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What’s this? An original graphic novel that looks pretty cool, has a SMITHS’ lyric for a title, and comes out on my birthday?
How…well…INTERESTING!

Interesting Drug INTERESTING DRUG Cover by Scott Newman
Interesting Drug Preview Page 1 INTERESTING DRUG Preview Page 1. Art by Anna Wieszczyk.
Interesting Drug Preview Page 2 INTERESTING DRUG Preview Page 2. Art by Anna Wieszczyk.
Interesting Drug Preview Page 3 INTERESTING DRUG Preview Page 3. Art by Anna Wieszczyk.

May 12,  2014 – Los Angeles, CA – Nostalgia is a powerful force, but what happens when it becomes the hottest drug on the market? In May, Archaia, an award-winning  imprint of BOOM! Studios, shows us the dangers of getting stuck in the past with INTERESTING DRUG,  a new original graphic novel. This sci-fi story from writer Shaun Manning and artist Anna Wieszczyk (LUCID) is a tripped-out psychological thriller full of scrappy anti-heroes and some of the most villainous riffraff of all space and time.

“We’ve all had this thought at least once in our lives: If you could travel back in time and change your past, would you do it?” questioned BOOM! Studios Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon. “In INTERESTING DRUG, Shaun and Anna prove just how dangerous that line of thought can be.”

When a man from the future recruits average retail worker Andrew Smith to help him create a drug that will allow him to travel through time, Andrew thinks he’s found the way to erase all his problems. However, the power of nostalgia proves to be the strongest of drugs, creating an epidemic of addiction with Andrew as its unwitting kingpin.

The INTERESTING DRUG hardcover original graphic novel arrives from Archaia in comic shops on May 28th with a cover price of $24.99, under Diamond order code MAR140979. Not sure where to find your nearest  comic retailer? Use comicshoplocator.com or findacomicshop.com to find one! It’s also available for order directly from boom-studios.com.

ABOUT BOOM! STUDIOS Founded by Ross Richie in 2005, Diamond Gem Award-winning “Best Publisher” BOOM! Studios (boom-studios.com) generates a constellation of best-selling Eisner and Harvey Award-winning original and licensed comic books and graphic novels with the industry’s top talent. BOOM! Studios is the home of Mike Carey’s SUICIDE RISK, Clive Barker’s NEXT TESTAMENT and HELLRAISER, Paul Jenkins and Humberto Ramos’ FAIRY QUEST, PLANET OF THE APES, Max Bemis’ POLARITY and Mark Waid’s IRREDEEMABLE. Steven Grant’s graphic novel 2 GUNS was recently released as a feature film from Universal Pictures, starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg. BOOM!’s all-ages imprint KaBOOM! publishes Charles Schulz’ PEANUTS, Jim Davis’ GARFIELD, Cartoon Network’s ADVENTURE TIME and REGULAR SHOW, Mike Kunkel’s HEROBEAR AND THE KID, and Roger Langridge’s Eisner Award-winning SNARKED. In June 2013, BOOM! acquired Archaia Entertainment (archaia.com). Archaia is the Eisner and Harvey Award-winning graphic novel publisher of MOUSE GUARD, COW BOY, GUNNERKRIGG COURT, RUST, SPERA, JIM HENSON’S TALE OF SAND, and many other great titles. In October 2013, BOOM! Studios entered into a unique first-look relationship with 20th Century Fox, giving the studio access to its library of titles and giving the publisher access to Fox’s vast catalog of films.

Hacktivist #1 Review

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Release Date: January 22nd, 2014

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Publisher: Archaia

Written By: Jackson Lanzing/Collin Kelly

Art By: Marcus To

Price: 3.99

Colors By: Ian Herring

Review:

Hacktivist is probably the most timely comic book I’ve read in a long while. It’s approaching a very sensitive subject that’s currently one of the hottest, hot button topics in our society today. At first I didn’t realize it was the actress Alyssa Milano involved with the book when I saw the inside credits but I did my researchez, and found out that the Charmed star is indeed the creator of the mini. Surprisingly it isn’t a celebrity throwing weight around to produce some lackluster funny book just because Avengers made 11.6 sextrillion dollars at the box office and their cousin worked with Robert Downey Jr back in ’87.

Hacktivist-001-Preview-PG3.jpg 9098e0
Hacktivist follows two young software prodigies who have developed their universe’s SuperFacebook3000. These guys are young, rich geniuses who have way too much money, time, resources, and brains on their hands. So they decide to do that thing rich geniuses with everything regularly do. Start hacking the world as a black hat team. While sparking a revolution in Tunisia and, yes, televising it, they get recruited into a bigger group of hackers. These guys are legal though. They’re called Cyber Command. The CIA, naturally. While this book is clearly glamorizing the two software giants/hacktivists, it also shows the emptiness, the longing, and the misunderstood genius these two struggle with. It also doesn’t seem like it will be taking sides in the debate. I’m sure these two will get themselves into some questionable, morally gray areas even without the evil government involved. That being said, it’s really well written and I look forward to some “straight from the headline” adaptations. The dialog between the two founders is like reading the answers of a real life software wunderkind being interviewed by Stephen Hawking sometimes. It’s fast and natural and current as hell. Lanzing and Kelly have captured the times in a comic book like I don’t believe has ever been done before. It’s like they channeled everything about Anonymous, Wikileaks, and hacktivism in general into their writing.

Hacktivist-001-Preview-PG6
The art by Marcus To is superb as well. It’s reminiscent of Marvel superstar Jim Cheung mixed with veteran Alan Davis. While the only action is on the first few pages, it’s full of the perfect body language and fluid motion you expect in a frontline DC title. The facial expressions of the cocky software billionaires are priceless as well as the smirks and scoffs from the bystanders caught in their wake. While the seriousness of the subject matter may clash with the cartoonish art style, for my personal tastes it works fine and tells the story perfectly.

hactivist
Hacktivist was a shot in the dark and a pleasant surprise. Alyssa Milano’s personal politics may have led her into this idea but it looks like she knows how to separate her beliefs from her work and craft a great story. Neutrality may become a concern but with the mini only being four issues, maybe we can get a good unbiased tale examining our role in the ever-expanding network called the World Wide Web.


BOOM! STUDIOS ACQUIRES ARCHAIA ENTERTAINMENT

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June 24th, 2013 – Los Angeles, CA – BOOM! Studios, the Eisner and Harvey Award-winning comic book and graphic novel publisher and two-time winner of Diamond Comics Distributors’ prestigious “Best Publisher” Gem Award, has merged with Eisner and Harvey Award-winning Archaia Entertainment, the publisher of graphic novels including Mouse Guard, A Tale of Sand, Rust, Spera, Cowboy, and Gunnerkrigg Court. BOOM! Studios will be the surviving company and the Archaia brand shall be maintained as a distinct imprint of BOOM!.

BOOM Studios aquires ArchaiaThe addition of Archaia positions BOOM!’s catalog of intellectual property as the largest independent company-controlled comic book and graphic novel library, behind only industry titans DC Entertainment (Warner Bros.) and Marvel Entertainment (Disney). BOOM!’s comic books and graphic novels pioneer a new business model, sharing intellectual property ownership between the company and the creators who generate the content. BOOM!’s Chief Executive Officer and founder, Ross Richie, noted, “Our creator-friendly model ensures that creatives are rewarded financially as they generate the franchises of tomorrow. Archaia operates with the same philosophy and objectives, which is one of the many reasons this combination is such a great fit.”

“We are thrilled and excited to join with BOOM!,” Archaia President and Chief Operating Officer Jack Cummins, who will continue in the same role, said. “BOOM! is very committed to maintaining the brand we’ve worked so hard to build and preserving our relationship with our creators, fans, and retailers. They’re fans of Archaia first and foremost, and are avidly working behind the scenes to expand our market penetration and carry our catalog deeper into retail channels. Archaia readers can expect the same editorial approach that has garnered industry-wide awards but we will have a much stronger platform to deliver our content in all forms and channels. I am personally looking forward to bringing our team together with the fantastic team Ross has built.”

Richie added, “Archaia has a terrific track record for creating award-winning, beautiful books with high production values. Jack Cummins, Stephen Christy, Mark Smylie, and the entire Archaia team have built an amazing publisher. With BOOM!’s resources, Archaia fans will see more of the books they love, while retailers will enjoy better business through stronger trade terms.” The companies also plan to put key items from the Archaia catalog back into print.
BOOM! Executive Chairman Scott Lenet of the venture capital firm DFJ Frontier noted, “We are excited to be investors in a profitable, growing company with a fantastic early track record of creating, curating, and marketing properties that audiences genuinely love. We have ambitious plans to continue to fund the company’s expansion in comics, graphic novels, and other media.”

August 2nd sees the release of the first BOOM! Studios feature film, the Universal Pictures-distributed 2 Guns starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg, based on the Steven Grant comic book published by BOOM!. The company is currently preparing its second feature film for production: Jeremiah Harm, based on the comic book by Keith Giffen, Alan Grant, and John Mueller, will be directed by Timo Vuourensola of Iron Sky (jeremiahharm.com).

Archaia has optioned Royden Lepp’s graphic novel Rust to Twentieth Century Fox. Among Archaia’s other announced deals are the development of Lucid (Warner Bros.), Bolivar (Warner Bros.), and Feeding Ground (Pressman Films).

Recently, legendary creators including writer Paul Jenkins (Wolverine: Origin, Inhumans) and artist Brian Stelfreeze (Batman: Shadow of the Bat, Wednesday Comics) have announced to the industry that BOOM! is their new publishing home. This summer BOOM! also launched the first original comic book Clive Barker has ever created and written, Clive Barker’s Next Testament.

July sees the blockbuster release of Archaia’s Mouse Guard: The Black Axe, created by Eisner Award winner David Petersen, Cyborg 009 in partnership with acclaimed Japanese publisher Ishimori, and The Thrilling Adventure Hour based on the long-running stage play of the same name.

About BOOM! Studios

Founded by Ross Richie in 2005, Diamond Gem Award-winning “Best Publisher” BOOM! Studios (boom-studios.com) generates a constellation of best-selling Eisner and Harvey Award-winning original and licensed comic books and graphic novels with the industry’s top talent. BOOM! Studios is the home of Mike Carey’s SUICIDE RISK, Clive Barker’s NEXT TESTAMENT and HELLRAISER, Paul Jenkins and Humberto Ramos’ FAIRY QUEST, PLANET OF THE APES, Max Bemis’ POLARITY and Mark Waid’s IRREDEEMABLE. Steven Grant’s graphic novel 2 GUNS will be released as a feature film from Universal Pictures August 2nd, starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg. BOOM!’s all-ages imprint KaBOOM! publishes Charles Schulz’ PEANUTS, Jim Davis’ GARFIELD, Cartoon Network’s ADVENTURE TIME and REGULAR SHOW, Mike Kunkel’s HEROBEAR AND THE KID and Roger Langridge’s Eisner Award-winning SNARKED.

About Archaia
Founded as a niche publisher in 2002, Archaia Entertainment, LLC has become the world renowned Eisner and Harvey Award-winning graphic novel publisher of Mouse Guard, Cowboy, Gunnerkrigg Court, Rust, Spera, Mr. Murder is Dead, Lucid, Artesia, and An Elegy for Amelia Johnson. At the core, Archaia is known for its great content. From its unparalleled reputation for publishing innovative, imaginative, and indelible stories, to its numerous industry awards and nominations, Archaia has proven time-and-time again that it has built one of the industry’s most visually stunning and eclectic slates of graphic novels. This sentiment has also been shared by countless industry news sources, including Ain’t it Cool News, Graphic Policy, and Comic Related, which all honored Archaia as “Best Publisher” of 2010. Additionally, Archaia has built unmatched co-development relationships with some of the most recognizable brands in Hollywood, including The Jim Henson Company where Archaia has built an entire graphic novel product line, including the multiple award-winning Jim Henson’s Tale of Sand and such beloved tales as The Dark Crystal, The Storyteller, and Fraggle Rock. (archaia.com).


Wednesday’s Webcomic – Gunnerkrigg Court

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Gunnerkigg Court is the long-running story of a young woman and her close friends discovering their boarding school is much, much more than it seems. Quiet, polite Antimony Carver begins her first-year studies at the eponymous court and begins to notice the strange goings on and begins to investigate despite the obstacle of the tight-lipped faculty. Though she is very reserved, a gregarious and clever girl named Katerina Donlan, the daughter of two faculty members, manages to befriend her and the two of them slowly manage to unravel the tangle of myths, legends, alchemy and mad science that have built Gunnerkrigg Court. Their own unique talents and those of their classmates and teachers are slowly revealed to be tied into the broader story, as well as the ancient gods and monsters that make appearances.

Our Heroine Appears, with 2 Shadows

The stories are episodic and come to a conclusion at the end of every chapter, but all are tied into the larger, broader mystery of the origins of Gunnerkrigg Court and its neighboring forest. Some chapters are very dark and tragic, though with positive endings and thankfully there are frequent comedic chapters to balance the mood. The art quality evolves quickly and keeps a consistent style and the characters age and evolve naturally, with sumptuous rich colors and intricate detail that shows all of the author’s attention to his historical and anthropological research. The mythologies of many cultures as well as the history of science are among many of the unique things a reader may learn after researching something that pops up in the story either in the background or mentioned directly. The characters are deep and flawed, all of them acting like the children they are and growing realistically while learning about life, love, and their own natural gifts. Gunnerkrigg updates three times a week without fail, as the author keeps himself at a 30 page buffer ahead of the projected publishing date.

The Author

Tom Siddell is very private, and does not reveal much about his personal life. He prefers to only discuss the comic and the world he has built. He has revealed that he lives in Birmingham, England and that he was a graphic artist at a video game company. He recently began to devote himself to Gunnerkrigg Court full time.Many pages have an amusing comment about the page at the bottom, which I recommend reviewing, and his tumblr features many bits of fan art he’s drawn for other properties and Gunnerkrigg Court related news as well as spiders. The Gunnerkrigg Court graphic novels are published by Archaia Entertainment and lots of high quality merchandise and prints have recently appeared at Topatoco.

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