Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Hoopla! - Episode 42: Strange News

Hello and welcome to Hoopla!

Normally I use this space to review comics and such and so forth, but there's been so much comic-book related news lately that I thought I'd devote this column to reprinting some of the week's biggest stories.


Frank "Goddam" Miller to. Issue Challenge. To. Osama bin Laden. And. All Iraqi Insurgents.

"I will dress up in a Spartan toga, grease my body up with oil, and single-handedly pummel them all to death. With. My. Bare. Fists."

Frank Miller surprised and delighted fans by releasing a personal challenge to Osama bin Laden last Friday on YouTube.

"American Flag draping down," the message began. "Heavy with the blood of innocents. Give me a Red."

"You killed our boys. Our children. Our soul." The message continued. "But I will. Beat. You. With. My. Bare. Hands. And then I will. Dine. In. Hell."

Comic-book writer and illustrator Frank Miller had made news earlier in the year by announcing that his next Batman graphic novel will pit the Caped Crusader against al-Qaeda international terrorist Osama bin Laden. Titled Holy Terror, Batman!, the project is scheduled for release by DC Comics sometime this year. In it, Miller said, “Batman kicks al-Qaeda’s ass.”

In his latest foray into political commentary, however, Frank Miller has promised to take on all of al-Qaeda himself, while dressed in a Roman toga.

According to reliable sources, Osama bin Laden has not yet responded.

Dan Didio Announces Upcoming Plans for Archie Comics

"Fans of Jughead and Veronica should brace themselves for some dark days ahead..."

Fans of Archie Comics were surprised last week to learn that Dan Didio has been brought in as the new editor-in-chief for Archie.

"Archie is an American institution," said Didio. "And I respect that. But sales have been slipping over the past several years. And the Powers That Be decided what was needed was a major shake-up. And that's where I came in."

Didio refused to reveal all of the upcoming surprises, but did provide these spoilers:

"I wouldn't dream of killing off Jughead. He's too important to the Archie Universe. But he might find it difficult to stuff his face with hamburgers after his arms have been torn from his body by Moose."

A picture of Jughead with cybernetic arms and steel, razor-sharp claws was posted on for a few hours but then hastily pulled.

"Let's just say that readers are going to see a side of Jughead that they've never seen before," chortled Didio.

Other upcoming events include a major crossover that will directly involve all of the Archie titles and several characters that haven't been seen in a very long time.

"If you think about it," said Didio, "Archie and his pals should be in their 90s by now. But they're not. They're still teens in high school. How is that possible? Well, let's just say that after our first major crossover, Archie-Ocaplypse, readers will learn the horrible truth."

Archie-Ocalypse will apparently run through the second half of 2008, all of 2009, and then will finish in 2010, leading directly into the next major cross-over "Archie-cide."

"I don't want to give too much away about Archie-cide, but suffice it to say that we're going to be introducing a new character, Holocaust Survivor, and he's got a bone to pick with Archie and his friends."

That cross-over will tie directly into a new weekly Archie series that will tie into all of the other Archie comics plus will also tie into all DC comics and several upcoming issues of Loony Tunes.

"I've promised not to reveal too much about this new weekly series, because it's not actually going to come out until 2012, but readers should prepare themselves for some continuity-driven story-telling. Old continuity gaffs will be addressed and resolved, while others will be created."

Didio also revealed that, in addition to tying into all of the Archie comics, all of the DC comics, and several issues of Loony Tunes, Archie Publishing is currently in talks with several weekly news magazines, including Newsweek and the Economist, to tie into actual world events as they occur in real time.

"This is a very exciting time for Archie," Didio announced. "Nothing like this has ever been done before. Obviously, there will be many challenges in tying into real world current events as they happen, but I think readers are going to be delighted with the results! In particular, I'm hoping that the US is involved in some kind of war around 2013 because we have a really great idea that's being tossed around about Archie and his pals being recruited and winding up in some war-torn country. Maybe in the Middle East, I'm hoping. Or North Korea."

Marvel Announces New, Weekly Series to be Written by Heinberg with Art by Rob Liefeld

"We've already got the first six pages finished and the script is half-finished for page 7 of first issue. And one of three variant covers that we'll be providing for the first issue is in rough-sketch form. And let me tell you, it looks great!"

No additional information was available.


Well, that's all the news that's fit to print, as the kids like to say. I hope you're all having a lovely October and dressing warmly and being nice to each other and flossing regularly.

Until next week...
- Paul

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