Friday, March 5, 2010

COMIC NEWS: Diamond Announces Top Products for February 2010

DC Comics Reached The Top of February's Comics Sales Chart As Blackest Night Nears Its Conclusion

The uniting of heroes and villains into Lantern Corps to defeat Nekron helped send Blackest Night #7, the latest chapter of the cosmic crossover event by writer Geoff Johns and artist Ivan Reis, to the top of the sales charts, giving DC Comics the best-selling comic book in February 2010, based upon total unit sales to comic book specialty shops, according to Diamond Comic Distributors.

Battling Blackest Night for the #2 spot on the chart was Siege #2, the second issue of Marvel Comics' Avengers crossover, which helped Marvel Comics take the top publisher spot in February with the company leading in both the Unit Market and Dollar Shares categories, for a 45.42% Unit Market Share and a 41.66% Dollar Share for the month.

Bill Willingham’s take on the creatures of myth and fairy tales, Fables, has been a strong seller for DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint and was optioned for a pilot by ABC. The latest collected volume of the series, Fables Volume 13: The Great Fables Crossover, collecting a nine-part storyline that ran between Fables and Jack of Fables, provided DC/Vertigo with the best-selling graphic novel to comic book specialty shops in February.

DC Direct brought the heroes and villains of their best-selling comic book mini-series Blackest Night to life, and the Blackest Night Series 3 Action Figures gave DC Comics the best-selling Toy product to comics specialty retailers in February. Wizards of the Coast’s latest expansion for the Magic the Gathering trading card game, Worldwake, gave the publisher the best-selling game product to specialty retailers for the month.


How does Diamond calculate the charts? It all starts at the comic book shop.

Data for Diamond’s sales charts — which include the monthly market shares and all top product charts — are compiled by Diamond Comic Distributors from a universe of over 3,500 comic book specialty shops located in North America and around the world. The account base includes brick-and-mortar comic book specialty shops, Internet merchants, and other specialty stores.

Unit and dollars sales are calculated based upon orders invoiced and shipped to Diamond accounts during any given month, which comprises initial pre-orders, advance reorders, and reorders, minus any copies that are received back from a title marked as returnable.


ABOUT DIAMOND COMIC DISTRIBUTORS—the world's largest distributor of English-language comic books and pop-culture related merchandise, Diamond is based in Baltimore, MD, and services more than 3,500 specialty retailers worldwide. For more information, visit Diamond on the web at

© 2010 Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. All rights reserved. Diamond, the Diamond logo, Diamond Books logo, and PREVIEWS are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Diamond Comic Distributors in the United States and/or other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective copyright owners.

Read More

COMIC CONVENTIONS: Neil Gaiman to Appear on Behalf of CBLDF at C2E2!!


Celebrated Author and Industry Icon to Appear on Behalf of
Comic Book Legal Defense Fund at
Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo

Neil Gaiman, the award winning author of novels, film, and comics including the epoch changing graphic novel series The Sandman will take the stage for a benefit appearance on behalf of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund at Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo (C2E2). An “Evening with Neil Gaiman”, a paid ticketed event, will happen on Saturday night, April 17, with 100% of the proceeds going to benefit the First Amendment legal work of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund.

The last time Gaiman performed theatrical readings was ten years ago when he did the "Last Angel Tour." On that tour, he criss-crossed the country doing sold-out evenings reading stories and poems, new material and beloved tales in order to draw attention to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. The "Last Angel Tour" was meant to have been the last ever such tour, and it produced the long-since sold out LIVE AT THE ALADDIN film. Even the posters from that tour now sell for hundreds of dollars.

That was ten years ago. A generation has grown up who have not seen an evening with Neil Gaiman. In these ten years he's published such books as American Gods, Coraline and The Graveyard Book. He's made movies and operas. He even started keeping a blog.

"Neil Gaiman is an enormous personality and it is a genuine privilege to have him perform at the inaugural C2E2 to bring attention to the important work that is carried out by the CBLDF,” states Lance Fensterman, Group Vice President for the Reed Pop Culture Group and Show Manager for C2E2.

"The Reed Pop Culture Group's commitment to the CBLDF is tremendous, and we're honored to work with them to create this unforgettable evening of storytelling to raise funds for the CBLDF's important work," says Charles Brownstein, the CBLDF's Executive Director.

An “Evening with Neil Gaiman" will be Mr. Gaiman's only public appearance at C2E2. Tickets for the event will be available at beginning Monday, March 8th at 12pm Central Time. You do not need a ticket to C2E2 to attend. Tickets for the general public start at $30 and C2E2 VIP Ticket Holders can attend for as low as $12. Ticket prices will increase at the door. Visit now for full details and ticket pricing.

For One Night Only. On the 17th of April 2010, at 7pm in the Arie Crown / IGN Theater at McCormick Place in Chicago. In support of the First Amendment. Neil Gaiman. You don't want to miss this.

Read More

COMIC NEWS: Hero Initiative travels to MegaCon-Whole lot goin' on!!!

Hero Initiative travels to Orlando, Florida’s MegaCon
Guest appearances by Joe Benitez, George Perez, and Steve Perry
Grandstand Sports and Memorabilia silent auction and more!

Hero Initiative will be traveling to MegaCon, the southeast’s largest comic book, science fiction/fantasy, anime, toys and gaming convention. The event will take place March 12-14 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. You can purchase tickets directly by logging onto:

We have a whole lot going on!

First up, traveling along with us from Los Angeles is artist Joe Benitez, known for The Darkness, Batman, and Justice League of America! Stop by the booth and pick up an original sketch by Benitez. All proceeds benefit Hero Initiative.

Make sure you come back, because George Pérez, one of the most influential artists of all time, will be at the Hero booth. He’ll be sketching as well, and this is one you don’t want to pass up.

On Friday from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., a special 11-man signing of Hero’s The Wolverine 100 Project will take place! Contributors Joe Benitez, Jim Calafiore, Mike Choi, Darwyn Cooke, Joe Jusko, Andy Smith, Bill Tucci, Mike McKone, Jimmy Palmiotti, Mike Perkins, and Brandon Peterson will be at the booth exclusively signing Hero's recent release. Get them while they are available, and get them signed by our team!

And that’s not all! Florida resident and acclaimed writer Steve Perry will be visiting the Hero booth as well. Perry is best known as one of the original writers of the Thundercats and Silverhawks TV shows, and Timespirits comics. Perry was diagnosed with cancer in February, 2009, and being the single father of a 9-year-old son, he struggled to make ends meet while battling his severe illness. After being homelessness, having no work and living in his car with his son, Hero Initiative is proud to have help Perry pull him through this difficult time. He will be giving back to say “thanks” by stopping by. Thank you, Steve!

Lastly, Grandstand Sports & Memorabilia has generously donated approximately 40 items that will be available through a silent auction. Items include a Hugh Jackman autographed Wolverine 8x10 Photo, Johnny Depp autographed 8x10 Photo, Elijah Wood autographed Frodo 8x10 Photo, Robert Downey Jr. & Jeff Bridges Dual Signed Iron Man 8x10 Photo and a Spider-Man limited edition lithograph with actual film cel, to name a few. The items will be on display in the lobby and at the Hero booth. Part of the proceeds will go to Hero Initiative.

Our Schedule is as follows:

Fri., 12 MAR, con hours 1-7
130-330: George Pérez
200-300: 100 Wolverines: Joe Benitez, Jim Calafiore, Mike Choi, Darwyn Cooke, Joe Jusko, Andy Smith, Bill Tucci, Mike McKone, Jimmy Palmiotti, Mike Perkins, Brandon Peterson
400-530: Joe Benitez
530-700: George Pérez

Sat., 13 MAR; con hours 10-6
1000-1200: George Pérez
1200-200: Joe Benitez
200-400: George Pérez
400-600: Joe Benitez

Sun., 14 MAR; con hours 10-5
1000-1200: George Pérez
1200-100: Joe Benitez
100-300: George Pérez
300-500: Joe Benitez

About Grandstand Sports and Memorabilia:

Grandstand Sports & Memorabilia Inc. is a domestic and international provider of hand signed authentic sports memorabilia. Since it's inception the company has held a domestic and international presence in both retail and wholesale markets. The corporate office is located in New York City. Aside from our charity and retail presence, Grandstand works with numerous corporations including: top sports internet sites such as and major financial companies. Grandstand also provides exclusive memorabilia to both Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdale's by mail catalogs. Grandstand Sports & Memorabilia
148 Madison Ave14th Floor New York, NY 10016, 212-532-8900, 888-78-GRAND

About The Hero Initiative:

The Hero Initiative is the first-ever federally chartered not-for-profit corporation dedicated strict to helping comic book creators in need. Hero creates a financial safety net for yesterday’s creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work. It’s a chance for all of us to give back something to the people who have given us so much enjoyment. Since its inception, The Hero Initiative has had the good fortune to grant over $400,000 to the comic book veterans who have paved the way for those in the industry today. For more information, visit or call 626-676-6354.

Read More

COMIC REVIEW: Starstruck #7 (IDW)

Let me admit one thing. I chose this book based on one name in the description: Charles Vess. Hailing from a couple of towns over from mine and being oh so talented (in addition to being a nice guy), he's enough to make me buy a comic. Imagine my surprise when I saw his credit as colorist. However, I'm glad I picked this up. Elaine Lee's combination of prose and traditional comic writing and Michael Kaluta's fantastical art come together to make one of the most random and interesting reads in a long time.

The story opens with commentary on a fictional book, Mind Spiders from the Planet Xenon, and moves into a story of Bronwyn and her family. They are celebrating "Anything-Can-Happen Day" at Uncle Bob's Fantanimalland. When Bronwyn gets separated from her family in the Aguacade, her life is changed forever. There are other stories of the Multiverse, which is explained by Lady Scooter Jean, Maiden Priestess of Phoebus. This leads into Galactic Girl Guide Brusilla recounting her summer vacation. I enjoyed Bronwyn's story and Brusilla's story the most, but the stories in the middle were interesting as well. I did get the feeling I was missing something at times, but I think it's because I didn't have the advantage of reading the other issues.

Elaine Lee's writing is fantastic, but to me Kaluta's art is the star of the book. It is gorgeous and suits the fantasy of Lee's writing very well. Vess is a good fit for coloring because Kaluta's art is very similar. I loved every page (even the ones where I wasn't quite sure what was going on), and a few made me think, "Wow, this would be a great painting!"

The bottom line on this one is this: if you're a fan of fantasy or just want a random read, grab a copy of Starstruck. Even if the story doesn't make sense all the time, you can gawk at the lush scenery.

Stacy Rader
Senior Reviewer

Read More

COMIC REVIEW: Incredibles #6 (BOOM! Studios)

I loved The Incredibles. I have seen the film repeated times, and it gets better every time. It stands to reason, then, that if you combine those characters with Mark Waid, good things happen. And in issue 6 of the ongoing Incredibles title from BOOM! Studios, it did.

The first thing that struck me was Ramanda Kamarga's art. If you've ever wondered what it would have looked like if the film were traditionally animated, here you go. It's true to the style of the characters and that retro-futuristic sensibility, and Andrew Dalhouse's colors pop off the page. Sometimes with kids' titles it can be a trade-off between story and art, but this isn't the case. Waid and Landry Walker have crafted a story that is fun to read, and is a great adventure.

Even though I haven't been reading the entire series thus far, this issue made me want to go back and read all of the other issues, and definitely pick up next issue. If you want to feel like a kid again, or you have kiddos in the house that you want to share comics with, Dash (pun totally intended) to your local comic shop and pick up this title. (And FYI, comics are a great way to motivate kids to read. My mom used to buy me Archie comics to help bolster my vocabulary when I started reading before kindergarten. Long story short, I was always grades ahead of my classmates, I had great verbal skills, and I love comics to this day because of the memories I had sharing them with my mom. Just sayin'.)

Stacy Rader
Senior Reviewer

Read More