Welcome back to The Rundown, our daily breakdown on comic news stories we missed from the previous day. Have a link to share? Email our team at email@example.com.
In case you missed it, DC announced the “Green Arrow 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular,” as well as the Black Label series “The Nice House on the Lake” and “Batman: Reptilian,” whilst Marvel revealed plans to celebrate Pride Month with “Marvel’s Voices: Pride.”
– Writer Brian Michael Bendis announced that his and artist Alex Maleev’s “Event Leviathan” follow-up, “Checkmate,” will be beginning on June 22. The six-part miniseries will feature colorwork by Dave Stewart, with a letterer yet to be announced for the series. Matt Taylor will provide the first issue with a variant cover. “Checkmate” will follow the spy team of the same name, led by the mysterious Mr King, as they set out to take down the supervillain organisation Leviathan. The series was announced in January 2020, but had been delayed and lacked a release date until now, with a one-shot intended to bridge the two series, called “Leviathan Dawn” #1, being published in February 2020.
– After releasing a teaser for their upcoming “Fantastic Four” storylines last month, Marvel detailed that “Fantastic Four” #33, the second part of the ‘Bride of Doom’ arc, will see Doctor Doom marrying his loyal champion, Zora Vukovic, aka Victorious. The issue by writer Dan Slott and artist R.B. Silva will feature a cover by Mark Brooks, appearances by Namor and Black Panther, and “a gut punch of an ending that no one will see coming.” June 2 is the release date for “Fantastic Four” #33 and, in the meantime, you can see Brooks’s cover here.
– DC Comics unveiled more covers for their upcoming Epic Games crossover, “Batman/Fortnite: Zero Point,” including a Jim Lee variant depicting Batman clashing with G.I. Joe’s Snake Eyes, following the announcement that the series will also feature Hasbro’s franchise in the third issue. The other covers that were unveiled included Mikel Janin’s main covers, and Epic Games CCO Donald Mustard’s premium variants for the second and third issues. The crossover will see Batman arriving on the video game’s Island setting without his memories. “Batman/Fortnite: Zero Point” #1, by Christos Gage, Donald Mustard, Reilly Brown, Nelson DeCastro, and John Kaliszon is scheduled for release on April 20, with issues #2 and #3 set for release in May. You can see the covers here.
– DC Comics also launched a partnership with the collectible maker, VeVe, for a collection of “Batman: Black and White” statues that will exist exclusively as digital entities attached to NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens), which are essentially one-of-a-kind digital certificates of authenticity. NFTs have become a controversial subject due to the significant environmental damage caused as a result of the increased electrical demand needed for their creation. Marsha Cooke, the widow of Darwyn, tweeted a “legal notice” that “no Darwyn Cooke artworks that I have control of will be offered as NFTs and any that appear are with the objection of his estate,” describing the creation of NFTs as a “an environmental disaster.” She stated the position will only be reconsidered when “the environmental issues had been addressed.”
– AHOY Comics moved their bookstore distribution from Diamond to Simon and Schuster, in a deal that their publisher, Hart Seely, stated “will allow us to expand our distribution in such a significant way.” This is the latest distribution deal Simon and Schuster has announced with comic publishers, following the recent deals with Red 5 Comics and Vault Comics. AHOY formalized their collection publishing schedule for the fall as part of the announcement, and you can see it in its entirety here.
– The McG-directed adaptation of Paul Tobin and Alberto Alburquerque’s “Mystery Girl” cast Tiffany Haddish (Girls Trip) as its lead, Trine. In the comics, Trine is a street detective who can answer every question that is posed to her, but doesn’t understand how she can, or what happened to her in the last decade. The Netflix feature does not have a release date at this time.Continued below
– Maribel Verdu (Pan’s Labyrinth) joined The Flash movie in the role of Barry Allen’s mother, Nora, while Billy Crudup, who had portrayed Barry Allen’s father, Henry, in Justice League had to depart due to a scheduling conflict, with a replacement set to be found. Kiersey Clemons signed a deal to return as Iris West last week. The Flash is scheduled for release on November 4, 2022.
– Joker composer Hildur Guðnadóttir won the Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media at this year’s ceremony. It is the second year in a row Guðnadóttir has won the award, having been recognized for her Chernobyl score last year. You can watch her acceptance speech here, and see the full list of this year’s winners here.
– Marvel Studios congratulated everyone involved with James Cameron’s Avatar after it reclaimed the #1 spot on the list of highest grossing movies of all time from the Avengers: Endgame, stating “We love you 3000.” The 2009 sci-fi epic regained the top spot after being re-released in China. At the time of writing, Avatar has a total worldwide gross of $2,802,013,640, compared to Endgame‘s $2,797,501,328.
– The Moulinsart foundation, which manages “The Adventures of Tintin” creator Hergé’s business for his heirs, sued the French artist, Xavier Marabout, over a series of mash-ups of Edward Hopper paintings with “Tintin” characters, claiming that the paintings infringe on the character’s copyright. In court, Marabout’s lawyer advocated that the paintings are parody, and that there was a “conflict between copyright and freedom of expression and creation,” whilst the lawyer representing Moulinsart claimed Marabout was “taking advantage of the reputation of a character to immerse him in an erotic universe has nothing to do with humor.” Marabout’s biography states (in French) that he has developed his style into one “where the line and the parody are omnipresent.” His other works depict animator Tex Avery’s characters in Picasso paintings. The court in Rennes will make a ruling on the alleged infringement in May.
– Finally, Kenneth C. Kelly, an African-American space engineer, died at the age of 92 from Parkinson’s disease. In addition to designing an antenna that aided in the space race, the development of satellite TV and radio, and NASA’s rover communication system, Kelly helped convince Charles M. Schulz to add a Black character to “Peanuts” by encouraging him to present the character as “supernumerary.” Franklin appeared in the strip shortly after. Schulz had previously been communicating with schoolteacher Harriet Glickman about the addition, but was worried about it being interpreted as patronizing after the death of Martin Luther King. Kelly is survived by his ex-wife Loretta Kelly; Anne Kelly, his third wife; and his son Ron Kelly and stepson Steve Kelly, along with their wives and two grandchildren.