Marvel, Feld Entertainment Release Exclusive Marvel Comic Book for Marvel Universe Live!

MarvelLiveThis summer, Marvel Universe Live! will bring more than 25 Marvel characters together for a live arena show that will tour 85 cities, and debuts this July in Tampa, Fla.

Feld Entertainment, the producer of Marvel Universe Live!, will release an exclusive prequel comic book created by Marvel. It will give audiences insight into the story behind the show, as well as introduce a new item in the Marvel Universe that plays a key role in the live show: the Lectro Link.

Written by Frank Tieri and illustrated by Miguel Sepulveda, with color art by Jay David Ramos, the comic is available for a limited time to those who pre-order tickets. The Lectro Link, meanwhile, is being made available as a unique collectible item, which customers can either pre-order online when purchasing tickets or buy at the show.

(4/23: The headline has been changed from “Pre-Order Marvel Universe Live! Tickets, Get Exclusive Comic Book.”)

April Is a Marvel-Filled Month for Diamond Select Toys

SpiderManStatueThis month’s offerings from Diamond Select Toys include figures and statues that tie into Marvel’s upcoming movies, as well as one zombified version of a classic Marvel super-villain.

The Marvel Minimates Series 57 Guardians of the Galaxy Movie Assortment captures the film’s characters as 2-inch mini-figures. Featuring nine different characters, the assortment includes four different two-packs: Star-Lord with Ronan, Drax with Groot—and a Rocket Raccoon micro-figure—Gamora with Nova Corps Centurion, and Nebula with Sakaar Soldier. The Gamora and Nebula sets will only be available in comic shops and specialty stores.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Movie Resin Statue depicts Marvel’s wall-crawler in a dynamic battle pose atop a New York City rooftop. It measures approximately seven inches tall with its base. [Read more...]

COMMENTARY: New Warner Bros. Licensed Games Look at Superheroes in a Different Light

I couldn’t be happier that 99 percent of all current movies—including Thor: The Dark World, due in theaters this week—seem to feature somebody in a cape or a miraculous suit of armor battling evil. Full disclosure: I was way into superhero comics when I was a kid. I managed to amass hundreds, which I kept in cardboard long boxes, re-reading them over and over throughout my tortured adolescence. I didn’t buy them for collecting purposes, thank goodness; years later, I traded in the entire lot for $10 and a key lime pie, and considered myself lucky to have gotten that much.

(Seriously, folks, if you started collecting comics during the 1990s or later, they’re not going to put your kid through college. It just won’t happen.)

My point is, I’m a huge superhero fan. However, I’ve started to feel super-saturated by all the licensed comic book-based movies and TV shows popping up of late. They always seem so serious, with all the world-saving and high drama, the death and epic romance and heroic posturing. It’s great the first time, pretty good the second, but around the umpteenth, I have to fight the urge to stand up and yell, “Hey, grown person in hockey pants! Aren’t we supposed to be having fun here?”

For that reason, I am grateful for the recent trend in video games based on licensed superhero properties, specifically those from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. While its offerings of late include the very seriously toned Batman: Arkham Origins, the company is also responsible for two titles that manage to be respectful of the superhero genre, while simultaneously turning it on its head in ways that are funny and downright fun. Both games are available now and suitable for kids ages 10 and up. [Read more...]

Todd McFarlane Productions and Image Comics To Release Visual Biography

The Art of Todd McFarlane: The Devil’s in the Details, Todd McFarlane’s first and only art book, is scheduled to hit shelves nationwide Wednesday, November 21.

A visual biography celebrating almost 30 years of artwork from one of the comic industry’s most popular and iconic artist personalities, The Art of Todd McFarlane: The Devil’s in the Details, is not just another art book. It follows McFarlane’s journey from a young comic book fan mimicking his favorite artists to his subsequent rise to comic book stardom. McFarlane, himself, provides hundreds of anecdotes throughout the 400-page book, walking the fans through his career.

Fans will receive a look at McFarlane’s creative take on characters from both DC and Marvel Comics and learn more about his move in helping to form Image Comics, where he published his brainchild, Spawn. In addition, fans get an exclusive peek at McFarlane’s first forays into various media, including toys, film, animation, music videos, and video games.

New Licensed Marvel Costume Set to Launch This Summer

Round 2 and Captain Action Enterprises announce the launch of a licensed Marvel costume set for Dr. Evil, marking the first time this 1960s character will be able to transform into a Marvel villain. The first look, a 1:6 scale Loki costume set, will launch in August.

The costume sets come in two versions. The Toys “R” Us-exclusive Loki costume set includes the Loki costume, complete with a mask, boots, a staff, a helmet, a belt, newspaper, and gloves. The deluxe set adds bonus accessories, including gloved hands, Uru Chains, a goblet, and a Hawkeye tunic and harness.

In addition to the Loki attire, Round 2 and Captain Action Enterprises will release a Thor uniform and accessory set to pair with the Captain Action figures that launched earlier this year. Thor and Loki, Thor’s adoptive brother and the God of Mischief, battled multiple times throughout Marvel’s Journey into Mystery series. They will battle on-screen this summer in Marvel’s The Avengers.

The Dr. Evil figure and both costume sets will be available at Toys “R” Us, hobby stores, and at www.autoworldstore.com.

This post was originally written by Leah Rocketto and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and “like” The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.

Captain Action to Make a Comeback This Fall

Round 2 has announced that for the first time in more than 40 years, Captain Action will once again be associated with Marvel Comics characters. This fall, 1/6-scaled Captain Action costume sets of Spider-Man and Captain America will debut at Toys “R” Us and other specialty retailers. Next year, additional Marvel character costumes sets will be released, including Iron Man and Thor.

Captain Action debuted in the mid-1960s. The action figure is equipped with costumes that allows it be disguised as a number of different super heroes and comic book characters.

[Read more...]

North American Comic Book Stores to Celebrate Free Comic Book Day

On May 1st, comic book retailers across North America will give out over two million comic books free of charge, in celebration of the 9th annual Free Comic Book Day.

Comic books will suit everyone’s taste, from Toy Story, Shrek, and Sonic: the Hedgehog to Iron Man, Superman, and even Lady Gaga.

Publishers set to participate include Dark Horse Comics, DC Comics, IDW Publishing, Image Comics, and Marvel Comics. Along with the free books, comic book stores will host creator signings, special sales, and encourage customers to dress up as their favorite super hero or comic book character.

To find a local store and to learn more about Free Comic Book Day go to www.freecomicbookday.com, or follow Free Comic Book Day on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/FCBD10.