Below you’ll find the solicitations information and cover artwork for all of Dark Horse Comics comic book titles releasing on August 3, 2016. My picks this week are the Tarzan graphic novel and Baltimore, both are must haves in my book! Check it all out and see what’s right for you!
The first images and poster have been released for The Legend of Tarzan, Warner Brothers’ new live-action take on author Edgar Rice Burroughs‘ Tarzan stories.
The movie stars True Blood star Alexander Skarsgard in the title role. He’s joined by The Wolf of Wall Street breakout Margot Robbie, who will also be seen playing Harley Quinn in the upcoming Suicide Squad movie, as Jane; Djimon Hounsou (Gladiator, Blood Diamond) as Chief Mbonga; Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction, The Avengers) as George Washington Williams; and Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds, Django Unchained) as the villain, Captain Leon Rom.
You can read more about the movie and see the images and poster below.
A list of comic book artists inspired by Russ Manning would be a long one, and the fact that San Diego Comic Con gives out an annual award in his name is testament to that influence. Truly, Manning is a comic artist’s “artist,” one whose influence clearly exceeds his stature. Thankfully, the Dark Horse reprints of his Edgar Rice Burroughs works, as well as his own Magnus Robot Fighter series, are rectifying that.
Korak, Son of Tarzan, Vol. 2 is the second Dark Horse volume collecting Manning’s Gold Key Korak comics, and as with the first volume, these are original stories, written by Gaylord Dubois. They’re fun, imaginative, and move along at a brisk pace. However, as with those previous volumes, this collection is really all about the art. Simply, Manning is one of the medium’s masters. His line work is confident and expressive, and his command of the human (and animal) form is right up there with the likes of Hal Foster. Clearly, there wasn’t anything he couldn’t draw, and when one compares him with numerous artists of today who rely on photographic reference, that distinction becomes much more impressive.
Everyone knows who Tarzan is, right? We’ve all pretended to swing through the jungle on vines while yelling. Heck, Steven Spielberg even had a little homage in his last Indiana Jones film, what with Shia LaBeouf doing a Tarzan impression amidst the treetops. What few people know is exactly how different the character was originally. Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan: The Sunday Comics, 1931-1933 gives us the chance to see the pulp hero as he was seen in times gone by.
While I am reviewing this book based upon a digital version, I know that the physical edition is going to be a gorgeous specimen. The strips will be hardbound in a beautiful 15″ by 20″ perfect bound collection. Printed on very high quality paper (unlike the original newspaper editions) and colored exactly as they were before, this will be a worthy addition to the true collector. Written by George A. Carlin (no, not the comedian…he wasn’t even born yet) and illustrated by Hal Foster (who later went on to create the still ongoing Prince Valiant comic strip) this compilation of the Sunday strips is an amazing series of adventures that still grip the reader to this day.
Pity John Carter. The poor bastard never had a chance. Released several months before the summer movie deluge, Andrew Stanton’s highly anticipated adaptation of the classic 1912 Edgar Rice Burroughs novel A Princess of Mars had the potential to kick start a new blockbuster sci-fi adventure franchise. Unfortunately a series of idiotic marketing decisions in the run-up to the film’s debut and mounds of negative press surrounding the troubled production and its massive $250 million budget effectively sabotaged any chance John Carter had of connecting with audiences and grossing enough at the box office to ensure future sequels and additional ancillary revenue. Though it was very flawed I found the movie to be one of the most entertaining of last year – you can read my review here – yet it seems I was in the minority on that front.
John Carter‘s failure to even make back its budget and marketing costs turned out to be a major strike against the Walt Disney Company; the studio was pilloried for befouling what has been long considered one of the most important (if not THE most important) genre properties in existence by hiring a director inexperienced with live action – Stanton had previously directed several major hits for the company’s computer animation division Pixar – and allowing the costs to mount to the point where the movie’s box office prospects were saddled with unrealistic expectations, and then worsening its already ineffectual reputation even more with a confusing ad campaign that had no idea how to sell the film to the general moviegoing public.