Image Comics – News week (February 11th, 2019)

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This week Image Comics announced a new series that fans of DC / Vertigo’s FABLES may be interested in, a new title from Image/Skybound Entertainment about a society of secret magicians, as well as new printings for issues 2 and 3 of DIE and MIDDLEWEST #2, and more.

Starting this April will be a new fantasy series titled FAIRLADY from the team of writer Brian Schirmer, artist Claudia Balboni, and colorist Marissa Louise.

The series is set in a fantasy world and focuses on a female private investigator who takes cases no one else wants, which I think is a great premise.

Look for the first issue on April 10th with 2 different cover versions. The main cover art will be from Balboni and Louise with the second cover version from Tula Lotay.

Coming this May from the creative team of Khary Randolph, Brandon Thomas, and Emilio Lopez is a new action-fantasy series titled EXCELLENCE.

The story is about a young man whose father is part of a secret society of magicians, who attempts to follow in the footsteps of his father.

Look for the first issue at your local comic book shop on May 8.

Image has two big hits on their hands with Skottie Young and Jorge Corona’s MIDDLEWEST and Kieron Gillen and Stephanie Hans DIE, and now issues of both will get new prints.

Look for the 3rd printing of Die #2, the 2nd printing of Die #3 as well as the 3rd printing of Middlewest #2 on March 13, and Die #4 with two cover versions (first from Hans, second from Christian Ward) on March 6th.

Die #4 Cover A by Hans (Diamond Code JAN190292) and Die #4 Cover B by Christian Ward (Diamond Code JAN190293) will be available on Wednesday, March 6.

All press releases are below. All artwork courtesy of Image.

A NEW CASE-SOLVING FANTASY SERIES FOR FANS OF FABLES BEGINS THIS APRIL IN FAIRLADY

Every fantasy epic ends with a war. But what happens when the war is over?

PORTLAND, OR 02/11/2019 — Writer Brian Schirmer, artist Claudia Balboni (Star Trek), and colorist Marissa Louise team up for Fairlady—an all-new fantasy series from Image Comics this April.

“I realized that there wasn’t a fantasy series that focused on a female private detective, and then I realized how much I needed that to be a thing,” said Schirmer. “I took a love of ’70s and ’80s shows like Magnum, P.I. and The Rockford Files, poured that into a big bowl of Middle Earth, and added dashes of China Miéville, Michael Moorcock and Mignola, and Barbarians Conan and Thundarr. Then we dropped in a tough outsider in the form of our protagonist, Jenner Faulds, the land’s only female private investigator. Let the limitless stories begin!”

In Fairlady, after posing as a man to join the army, Jenner Faulds returns home to The Feld for a new start as a “Fairman”—a specially licensed private investigator. But sexism didn’t end on the battlefield, and as the only “Fairlady,” Jenner gets stuck with the cases nobody else wants. Hitting the streets to solve The Feld’s overlooked mysteries, Jenner finds that the smallest cases hide the biggest secrets.

Fairlady blends the procedural case-solving of Magnum, P.I. and Fables, but is set in a vibrant, Rat Queens-like high fantasy world. This debut issue and each following issue will feature a complete 30-page story.

Fairlady #1 Cover A by Balboni and Louise (Diamond Code FEB190020) and Fairlady #1 Cover B by Tula Lotay (Diamond Code FEB190021) will be available on Wednesday, April 10. The final order cutoff deadline for comics retailers is Monday, March 18.

Fairlady #1 will also be available for purchase across many digital platforms, including the official Image Comics iOS app, Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, comiXology, and Google Play.

 IMAGE/SKYBOUND ENTERTAINMENT SUMMON A SECRET SOCIETY OF MAGICIANS IN EXCELLENCE THIS MAY

PORTLAND, OR 02/14/2019 — Khary Randolph (We Are Robin, Black, Tech Jacket) and Brandon Thomas (Horizon, The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury, Noble) ignite a generational war in an all-new, action-fantasy series—Excellence—launching from Image/Skybound Entertainment this May. This new series features a creative team comprised entirely of creators of color.

Excellence is all about contrasts—characters that are capable of doing these impossible things, but whose abilities are largely defined by others,” said Thomas. “This conflict explodes within a relationship between a father and son that have very different ideas about who should benefit from this power, and how long they’re supposed to wait around for things to get ‘better.’ Like most popular genres, fantasy is in desperate need of expansion, and we’re excited and honored to fill that void with this action-packed series, as we agree with our protagonist…it’s now or never.”

Excellence follows Spencer Dales, a young man born into a world of magic. His father belongs to the Aegis, a secret society of magicians ordered by their unseen masters to better the lives of others—those with greater potential—but never themselves.

Randolph added: “One of the major themes of this book was generational rifts, so from every aspect of the worldbuilding, I tried to mash up the old with the new. Taking visual cues from artists like Jim Steranko, Hitchcock, and Saul Bass and remixing them with anime, hip-hop, and video game influences. At the end of the day, we’re just trying to create a world that is beautiful to look at but also resonates on a deeper emotional level.”

Now it’s time for Spencer to follow in his father’s footsteps, but all he sees is a broken system in need of someone with the wand and the will to change it. But in this fight for a better future, who will stand beside him?

Excellence #1 (Diamond Code MAR190016) hits comics shops on Wednesday, May 8. The final order cutoff deadline for retailers is Monday, April 15. 

Excellence #1 will also be available for purchase across many digital platforms, including the official Image Comics iOS app, Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, comiXology, and Google Play.

MULTIPLE ISSUES OF KIERON GILLEN & STEPHANIE HANS’ DIE RUSHED BACK TO PRINT

PORTLAND, OR 02/14/2019 — Image Comics is pleased to announce that New York Times bestselling creator Kieron Gillen (The Wicked + The Divine) and artist Stephanie Hans’ Die #2 and Die #3 will both be rushed back to print in order to keep up with growing demand for the series. 

Die is a pitch-black fantasy where a group of adults have to deal with the returning unearthly horror they barely survived as teenage role-players. The series is perhaps best described as “Goth Jumanji”—but that only captures a sliver of what you’ll find in this series where fantasy gets all too real.

Die #2, third printing (Diamond Code JAN198202) and Die #3, second printing (Diamond Code JAN198203) will be available on Wednesday, March 13. The final order cutoff deadline for comic shop retailers is Monday, Feb 18.

Die #4 Cover A by Hans (Diamond Code JAN190292) and Die #4 Cover B by Christian Ward (Diamond Code JAN190293) will be available on Wednesday, March 6.

Fans can also subscribe to receive the series delivered by mail within the domestic U.S. on Image Direct.

Die is also available for purchase across many digital platforms, including the official Image Comics iOS app, Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, comiXology, and Google Play.Select praise for Die:

“Really couldn’t have enjoyed Die #1 more than I did. Kieron Gillen and Stephanie Hans are a powerful merging of talents. Feels like a well-oiled team that’s been working together for years. Image Comics continues to innovate.” —Rick RemenderDeadly Class, Low, Black Science, Seven to Eternity 

“Utterly beautiful.” —The Hollywood Reporter

“So I read Die today and it’s something special: clever, chilling, beautiful, and surprising. IT’S REAL GOOD AND I THINK YOU SHOULD GET IT.” —Ryan North,The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Dinosaur Comics, How To Invent Everything: A Survival Guide For The Stranded Time Traveler

“Emotional evisceration awaits. I cannot recommend this highly enough” —Marguerite BennettAnimosity, Bombshells

“Seriously, pre-order your copy; it’s so good!” —Women Write About Comics

“I’ve had the pleasure of reading Die from Gillen, Hans & Cowles and it’s everything I love about comics. It’s such a great concept for a series.” —Gerry DugganDeadpool, Analog

“Do you wish that IT had fewer clowns luring in sewers with balloons and more RPG sessions that cause kids to disappear for several years? Then Die by Kieron Gillen and Stephanie Hans is the comic for you! Also, I got to test-play the RPG the book is built around and it’s SO FUN.” —Jody HouserStranger Things, Faith, Doctor Who

“Die is a compelling drama, filled with secrets and lies. It has the reliable wit and grace one expects from Gillen along with rich and stunning artwork by Hans, who is without a doubt delivering her best work to date. Gorgeously rendered, perfectly constructed, Die is a fantastic new series that pulls the reader into a new world, in more ways than one.” —Declan ShalveyMoon Knight, Injection, Return Of Wolverine

“Soooooo Kieron Gillen and Stephanie Hans’ Die is something ABSURDLY special. Really an incredible book.” —Mags VisaggioEternity Girl, Kim & Kim, Sex Death Revolution

MIDDLEWEST FLIES OFF SHELVES, BACK TO PRINT AGAIN TO KEEP UP WITH SERIES MOMENTUM

PORTLAND, Ore. 02/14/2019 — Middlewest #2 by Eisner Award-winning and New York Times bestselling creator Skottie Young (I Hate Fairyland, Bully Wars, Deadpool) and Russ Manning Award winning artist Jorge Corona continues to fly off shelves and fan enthusiasm for the series builds. Image Comics has greenlit the Middlewest #2 for a third printing. This third printing cover will feature new artwork by Jorge Corona. 

The lands between the coasts are vast, slow to change, and full of hidden magics. Mistakes have been made, and in Middlewest, an unwitting adventurer searches for answers to quell a coming storm that knows his name. A blend of dark fantasy best described as classic Don Bluth animation meets Return to OzMiddlewest is the tale of Abel, a young boy who must navigate an old land in order to reconcile his family’s history.

Middlewest #2, third printing (Diamond Code JAN198201) will be available on Wednesday, March 13. The final order cutoff deadline for comics retailers is Monday, February 18.

Middlewest #2 is also available for purchase across many digital platforms, including the official Image Comics iOS app, Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, comiXology, and Google Play. Fans can also subscribe to receive the series delivered by mail within the domestic U.S. on Image Direct.

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