Tag Archives: comic book

Comic book icon Archie to die saving gay friend

The comic book icon Archie Andrews dies saving the life of his gay friend in this week’s installment of “Life with Archie.”

The freckle-faced Archie will be shot when he intervenes in an assassination attempt on Kevin Keller, the series” first openly gay character. Andrews’ death, which was announced in April, will mark the conclusion of the series about the grown-ups who once attended Riverdale High.

Archie,” Jon Goldwater, Archie Comics publisher and co-CEO told The Associated Press. “He dies heroically. He dies selflessly. He dies in the manner that epitomizes not only the best of Riverdale but the best of all of us. It’s what Archie has come to represent over the past almost 75 years.”

Keller’s character joined Veronica Lodge, Betty Cooper, Jughead Jones and Reggie Mantle in the Archie Comics spin-off “Veronica” in 2010. He later appeared in his comic book. In the “Life with Archie” stories, Keller is a newly elected senator advocating gun control reforms after his husband is involved in a shooting.

“We wanted to do something that was impactful that would really resonate with the world and bring home just how important Archie is to everyone,” said Goldwater. “That’s how we came up with the storyline of saving Kevin. He could have saved Betty. He could have saved Veronica. We get that, but metaphorically, by saving Kevin, a new Riverdale is born.”

Andrews’ final moments will be detailed in “Life with Archie” No. 36, while issue No. 37 will jump forward a year and focus on the gang honoring the legacy of their red-headed pal, who first appeared in comics in 1941 and went on to become a colorful icon of wholesomeness. Other incarnations of Andrews will continue to live on in Archie Comics series.

The latest issue will be on newstands on July 16.

When he announced plans for issue No. 36 in April, Goldwater said, “We’ve been building up to this moment since we launched ‘Life with Archie’ five years ago, and knew that any book that was telling the story of Archie’s life as an adult had to also show his final moment.

“Archie has and always will represent the best in all of us — he’s a hero, good-hearted, humble and inherently honorable. This story is going to inspire a wide range of reactions because we all feel so close to Archie. Fans will laugh, cry, jump off the edge of their seats and hopefully understand why this comic will go down as one of the most important moments in Archie’s entire history. It’s the biggest story we’ve ever done, and we’re supremely proud of it.”

Comic book Archie to die a hero in July

Not even Archie Andrews is immortal in the world of comics.

Archie Comics announced Tuesday that the famous comic book character will heroically sacrifice himself while saving the life of a friend in a July installment of “Life with Archie,” a comic book series that tells the story of grown-up renditions of Archie and his Riverdale gang.

“We’ve been building up to this moment since we launched `Life with Archie’ five years ago and knew that any book that was telling the story of Archie’s life as an adult had to also show his final moment,” Archie Comics publisher and co-CEO Jon Goldwater said in a statement.

Archie’s final moments will be detailed in “Life with Archie” No. 36, while issue No. 37 will jump forward a year and focus on his friends Jughead, Betty, Veronica and Reggie honoring the legacy of their red-headed pal.

Archie first appeared in comics in 1941 and went on to become a colorful icon of wholesomeness.

In recent years, Archie Comics has tackled such issues as dealt with plots as diverse as coming out as gay and the zombie apocalypse in Archie’s fictional hometown of Riverdale. However, Archie himself won’t need to rise from the grave. The freckle-faced character will still be alive and well in other series.

S.C. House refuses to restore college cuts for books dealing with homosexuality

The South Carolina House refused this week to back down from plans to punish two public colleges in the budget for assigning freshmen to read books dealing with homosexuality.

The House rejected multiple attempts to restore $52,000 cut from the College of Charleston in the state budget, and $17,142 cut from the University of South Carolina Upstate. Those are the amounts the universities spent on books assigned to their incoming freshmen last summer. The efforts failed by votes of 69-41, 70-43, 71-40 and 71-38.

Opponents argued the cuts, which reduce what the colleges can spend from their own revenue sources, censor and micromanage college decisions.

When it comes to public colleges, legislators should be debating funding and building construction, not “pushing our own moral agenda on these institutions of higher learning,” said Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter, D-Orangeburg.

“Are we saying we don’t trust the college students enough to expose them to something they may not have seen before? We can’t let you read anything other than what we believe?” she asked. “What about the notion of freedom to have different views? Isn’t this what we go all over the globe fighting for?”

College of Charleston students read “Fun Home,” a book by Alison Bechdel that describes her childhood with a closeted gay father and her own coming out as a lesbian. USC Upstate assigned “Out Loud: The Best of Rainbow Radio,” referring to South Carolina’s first gay and lesbian radio show, for a freshmen course that included lectures and other out-of-classroom activities meant to spark discussions about the book.

Rep. Garry Smith, whose subcommittee made the reductions, said he wanted to make a point after college officials declined to give students an option to read something else. He said he wouldn’t oppose the books if they were part of an elective course. He called it promotion of a lifestyle.

“Freedom comes with responsibility. These universities did not act responsibly,” said Smith, R-Simpsonville.

Rep. Wendy Nanney, R-Greenville, said opponents of the cuts argue for a diversity of ideas but don’t want to consider conservatives’ viewpoint. After House Speaker Bobby Harrell rejected Smith’s suggestions to project illustrations from “Fun Home” on the House screen, Nanney said, “It’s not appropriate to even put up in this room but we’re giving it to 18-year-old kids?”

The votes came as the House opened floor debate on the state budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1. The spending plan commits $7 billion in state taxes. The state budget would total $24 billion, up from $22.5 billion this year, when including all revenue sources, such as federal money, fees, fines, lottery profits and tuition at public colleges.

While other sections of the budget passed quickly with no discussion, the college cuts tied up debate for hours. Debate on other sections will continue Tuesday.

College of Charleston President George Benson said the university is committed to academic freedom, and any university education must include the opportunity for students to engage controversial ideas. Any attempt by legislators to tie funding to what books are taught threatens the credibility of all of South Carolina’s public colleges, he said.

“Our students are adults, and we will treat them as such,” Benson said. “Faculty, not politicians, ultimately must decide what textbooks are selected and how those materials are taught.”

DC’s Batwoman proposing marriage to girlfriend

In the latest installment of DC Comics’ Batwoman series, the crimefighter proposes marriage to her secret girlfriend.

The 32-page comic, written by J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman, with illustrations by Williams, went on sale Feb. 20.

The comic contains what DC describes as “the massive conclusion to the current storyline as Batwoman and Wonder Woman struggle to defeat Medusa and a horde of villains!”

The comic also, according to DC, contains “the start of a surprising new status quo for Batwoman!”

Could it be marriage for Batwoman aka Kathy Kane? Bleedingcool.com reports that “DC’s leading lesbian lady asks Maggie Sawyer, Captain Sawyer,  her secret girlfriend to be her wife.”

Batwoman has appeared in a couple of comics – The Dark Knight and Batgirl. Batwoman the comic debuted in 2011.

DC’s website for the superhero of Gotham City says she has no superpowers but is a trained soldier and hand-to-hand combatant.

Her history: On her 12th birthday, Katherine “Kate” Rebecca Kane was taken hostage and held for ransom along with her twin sister and their mother. The rescue operation led by Kane’s father, Col. Jacob Kane, resulted in the death of her mother and sister. After her stint in the U.S. Army ended in scandal, a brief encounter with Batman inspired Kane to embark on a crime-fighting mission to clean up the streets using gear stolen from the military.

When confronted about her actions by her father, Kane agreed to let him train her, and she donned the Batman-inspired suit he created. She becomes known as Batwoman and brings her own brand of justice to Gotham City. Batwoman turned down an offer to join Batman, Incorporated, preferring to stay in control of her own mission to fight evil as she sees fit. Instead, she’s joined forces with the DEO in an effort to take down a growing contingent of supernatural criminals slithering their way into Gotham.

Comic crossover: Archie kids to mix with ‘Glee’ gang

The kids from Riverdale are no strangers to high school angst, worries about fitting in or music. Neither are the teens from “Glee.”

Now, Archie, Betty, Veronica and resident boy genius Dilton Doiley will match wits – and maybe a vocal or two – with the likes of Finn Hudson, Kurt Hummel and Rachel Berry in the pages of “Archie Comics,” said Jon Goldwater, the co-chief executive officer.

Goldwater unveiled the planned collaboration on Monday, ahead of Wednesday’s start of Comic-Con in San Diego.

He said the crossover between the Fox show and the comic book is set for late this year or in early 2013, and is being written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, one of the television show’s writers. It features multiple characters from the long-running comic book and the Fox show now in its third year. Dan Parent is illustrating the story.

“I’ve become friendly with Roberto – he’s just a genius writer,” said Goldwater, who met the playwright last year at New York Comic Con when he stopped by Archie Comic Publications Inc.’s booth. “He and I were shooting the breeze.”

That visit sparked a friendship and, ultimately, the idea for the crossover.

“It turns out he’s been a fan of Archie for years. His most recent Halloween costume? He was dressed as Archie!” Goldwater said.

For now, says Goldwater, the plot of the four-issue story arc in “Archie Comics” is a closely held secret, but it does involve parallel dimensions, dancing and some serious singing, too.

It’s also the latest step for the publisher, which has expanded its pop cultural offerings beyond just Jughead, Midge and Mr. Weatherbee.

In the past two years, Archie Comics has brought in an openly-gay character, Kevin Keller; been visited by the band Kiss; and seen Archie marry Valerie, the bassist for Josie and the Pussycats, and have a daughter with her.

“Those have reintroduced a lot of people back to ‘Archie,’” Goldwater said. “And it’s opened a whole new world of people coming to ‘Archie’ for the first time, too.”

Goldwater said that in the course of his conversation with Aguirre-Sacasa it was evident both “Glee” and “Archie” had some common ground despite coming from decidedly different mediums, including a diverse array of characters, conditions and concerns.

“‘Glee’ is courageous in their story lines and how they represent their characters, how they represent the high school situation,” he said, noting that it’s similar in the world of Archie, too.

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Marvel superhero to marry his boyfriend

Marvel comic book character Northstar will become the first gay super-hero to walk down the aisle when he marries his boyfriend Kyle in the pages of “Astonishing X-Men” next month.

When he came out in a 1992 issue of “Alpha Flight,” Northstar became the first major gay superhero. Now the comic book world also has out characters like Batwoman, the Question, Wiccan and Hulking.

Soon Northstar aka Jean-Paul Beubier will accomplish another first, marrying partner Kyle Jinadu in June.

Pride month also is when DC comics will reintroduce an “iconic” male superhero as gay.

“When a major comic publisher like Marvel not only includes, but publicly celebrates the legal wedding of two of its gay characters, it is a reflection of how supporting same-sex couples has become the new normal,” said GLAAD president Herndon Graddick. “Readers expect to see their realities portrayed in these fictional worlds and today that includes married gay and lesbian couples.”


Female Force publishing RuPaul comic

A new comic biography examines the life of RuPaul Andre Charles. The celebrity is the focus of a new Bluewater Productions’ Female Force biography comic – “Female Force: RuPaul.”

Comic enthusiasts and RuPaul fans will find the comic in stores in July.

Bluewater says the issue covers the rise to fame by self-described “Supermodel of the World” and RuPaul’s activist work. The bio charts the star’s early struggle as a musician and the big break in the B52s’ “Love Shack” video.

The issue, written by Michael Troy and penciled Nathan Girten also delves into RuPaul’s personal life as an openly gay performer and many public trials and tribulations, including the 1993 furor over the upstaging of legendary comic Milton Berle on live TV and the cult-like following for “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”

“RuPaul is bigger-than-life and can hardly be contained in the pages of a traditional comic,” said Bluewater president Darren G. Davis. “That’s why we expanded this issue to 40 pages.”

Davis said the star is featured in a female-centric comic book because “he is comfortable in his own skin and is happy to let anyone within earshot know that. The fact he choses his public persona to be female, emphasizes that he stays true to his own concept of self. And that solidifies RuPaul as a female force.”

Troy said, “I have been a huge RuPaul fan for years, and I sashayed at the chance to be part of bringing him to comics.”

The Female Force series includes biographies of Michelle Obama, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Madonna, Cher, Oprah Winfrey, Stephenie Meyer, JK Rowling and Barbara Walters.

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Female Force’s newest release: Cher comic

Bluewater Productions’ newest release in its Female Force comic book series is “Cher.”

The 32-page comic will be in bookstores and on Amazon on Feb. 15.

New York Times’ best-selling author Marc Shapiro wrote the bio-comic, which features art by Zach Basset with a cover by DC Comics artist Joe Phillips.

“We have been creating the biographies of the famous in a sequential art form for almost two years, and it was only a matter of time before we got to this icon,” said Bluewater publisher Darren G. Davis.

Shapiro said Cher’s life reads like a comic book: “The clothes, the times, the attitudes of the decades she’s lived through. The different styles of music she’s been involved in. So much of what Cher has experienced is so flamboyant, over the top and just plain out there. She has been very much the real life equivalent of a superhero, and writing about Cher, to a large degree, has been just about letting my imagination go.”

Others profiled in the Female Force series include Madonna, Britney Spears, JK Rowling, Ellen DeGeneres, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Sarah Palin and Selena Gomez.

Bluewater publishes comic books and graphic novels, including “10th Muse,” “The Legend of Isis” ” “TekWar Chronicles,” “Wrath of the Titans,” “Sinbad: Rogue of Mars,” “Jason and the Argonauts” and “Vincent Price Presents.”

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Spandex, a comic book featuring an all-gay team of superheroes, has been nominated for an Eagle Award, a top industry prize. The British-themed comic has just two issues, the second of which tells the story of a jewel heist at Buckingham Palace that sends the Spandex team off on a chase to find the perpetrators. They end up in Japan, fighting Gayzilla and the Pink Ninjas. Will they return the jewels? Will the queen be beholden? Will Spandex win an Eagle? Tune in…