A new horizon.

*Mainstream Acceptability Dept: Hollywood films? Psssh. Videogames? Blah. No, just as Asterix recently taught us all what a real best-selling comic looks like, we must again look to the European scene to ascertain a truly cutting edge example of a comic ready for translation to alternate media, with just a little bit of American know-how added to the equation. I don’t know why this news isn’t at the top of every comics site’s list of stories, but I guess Salon.com gets the scoop. From their recent report on the ‘RealDoll’ phenomena:

Soon, a big-butted voluptuous Body 10 will debut, modeled after an erotic cartoon character called Druuna that has many Hello Dolly fans.”



Oh sure, it’s not a licensed product or anything (and I'm pretty certain you can approximate yer favorite superheroine already via RealDoll’s customization procedure); really, it’s just a specific torso type. But still, if I were Paolo Eleuteri Serpieri, this would be pretty much the greatest moment of my life, hands down, and I’d be pushing hard for an ‘official’ version. Just think! They could advertise them in Heavy Metal right next to the collected albums and the sketchbooks! They could devote one of those seasonal specials to it, with a photo cover! No - fumetti!!

Oh man, it’s a rare creator that manages to touch his readership in this way. This is much better than Watchmen making some dumb Best 100 Books Since 1923 list; this is real human impact.

Thank you, Serpieri. Thank you. (Abhay found this)

*Oh January solicitations, what won’t you reveal?

- Over at Image, Flaming Carrot Comics #4 has now been re-titled Flaming Carrot Special, though it’s still the same length, and still a fumetti issue. Also, Gødland gets its first trade, with issue #7 also appearing. Quite a fast schedule.

- As for Dark Horse, Kazuo Umezo’s Scary Book Vol. 1: Reflections appears (even though Dark Horse also seems to think it might be subtitled ‘Shadows’ - hey, who can decide?), pretty much guaranteeing my purchase. It’s actually two standalone 100+ page stories compiled into one book; Umezu is one of the legends of manga horror (among other things - he’s also been a beloved kids' comics author and a popular rock singer), and everyone should check his work out.

- The first thing that caught my eye over at Marvel’s ‘trade’ selections was the new Marvel Masterworks: Atlas Era Tales to Astonish Vol. 1 collection, compiling the first ten issues of post-Code horror, sci-fi, and monsters. Of course, it’s also $50, which sort of puts a damper on the fun. Essential Godzilla Vol. 1, however, may be right up everyone’s alley. And there’s also Essential Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Vol. 1, just to escort the line into its decadent period.

- Regarding actual new Marvel comics, well, Warren Ellis rolls out Ultimate Silver Surfer for the debut of Ultimate Extinction, though I want you to know I’m winking when I use the term ‘new.’ Ditto for the debut of the ‘new’ Mythos: X-Men one-shot, a 32-page painted thing meant to recycle the same fucking stories yet agai*COUGH* I mean, introduce new readers to the awesome world of Marvel superheroes. Elsewhere: we are assured that the current Spider-Man crossover will transform the entire Marvel Universe (so soon?). Marvel opts to pray that people will pay four bucks for them to boil the first 12 issues of Astonishing X-Men down to the important bits in the 48-page Astonishing X-Men Saga; people will. The solicitation of the final issue of that Kevin Smith Spider-Man thing begins “No, this is not a dream,” and promises that the events therein will spark debate among readers, perhaps in regards to what other things their $2.99 could have been better spent on. And hey, look! New Mangaverse! Excellent as always.

- All snark aside though, X-Statix returns (albeit with Nick Dragotta sharing art responsibilities with Mike Allred) for the five-issue X-Statix Presents: Dead Girl miniseries, and the story promises to be explicitly about the impermanence of death in a Big Two superhero universe, which is something I’ve been wanting to read for a while, as Dr. Strange recruits the titular heroine to face down a pissed-off army of currently deceased Marvel villains. Looks great!

- Other possibly neat stuff: Paul Di Filippo of Top Ten: Beyond the Farthest Precinct jumps over to Marvel for a new five-issue Doc Samson miniseries. And Warren Ellis also has the debut of his most promising Marvel project, the 12-issue NextWave, with special guest star Fin Fang Foom, plus he gets to share an issue of the new Marvel Spotlight with Jim Cheung.

- And finally, IDW presents 30 Days of Night: Dead Space #1, which launches the title into, as one might expect, outer fucking space. Now if only I could remember what is it they say about horror franchises when you've resorted to shooting the monsters off into space…