New Ardden Goodies

Dynamite Entertainment have added Flash Gordon to their list of old timey characters they’re bringing back on to the comics shelves, along with Green Hornet and Lone Ranger and the upcoming Tarzan and The Shadow. However, Ardden Entertainment have been publishing Flash Gordon comics for a while now, and their line has been expanding lately. Here’s their newest 3 issues.

If you’re at  New York Comic-Con this week, you can visit the team at Booth #659, right across from Marvel. They will be having a few signings, including Tom Peyer, Tony Isabella, Jim Krueger, and others.

 

FLASH GORDON: INVASION OF THE RED SWORD #5 by Brendan Deneen & Eduardo Garcia

 

The Invasion Continues! As Flash finally reunites with Zarkov, Barin and Thun, Prince Vultan and Dale Arden realize that they aren’t so much guests of the Power Men of Mongo as much as prisoners!

 

Vultan’s reunion with someone from his past leads to a deadly confrontation with the leader of the Power Men. Meanwhile, the Red Sword continues its dominance of Mongo, leading Flash and his team to come up with a desperate last-minute plan to defeat them before all hope for the planet is lost!

 

PHOENIX #4 by Jim Krueger, Brendan Deneen & Dean Zachary

 

As Phoenix learns more about the aliens who captured him from a surprising new ally, he also discovers that his powers are growing exponentially – and that might not be such a good thing!

 

An encounter at a bar leaves a number of innocents hurt and has Ed questioning which side he’s really on!

 

WULF #3 by Steve Niles & Nat Jones

 

The war for two worlds grows even more deadly! Wulf finds himself trapped in present-day New York City…or does he?…along with Detective Sam Lomax. Meanwhile, an ancient evil continues its insidious attack and the enemy seems to be none other than Iron Jaw!

 

And if you missed any previous issues, or any other Ardden/Atlas titles, check out: www.Ardden-Entertainment.com and www.Atlas-Comics.com

 

 

 


New Casper Series

Casper the Friendly Ghost turns 60 this year and Ardden Entertainment (the people behind the recent Flash Gordon series) are dusting off the ghost and his pals. I don’t think purists with fond memories will like this, but I could be wrong. The covers look different and not what you’d expect from Casper, and J.M DeMatteis and Todd Dezago are veterans in the comics biz, so it could very well be a great all-ages series that brings kids, and perhaps some adults, into comics. Press release below.

CASPER AND THE SPECTRALS Features All-New Graphics and Storylines for Casper the Friendly Ghost®, Wendy the Good Little Witch™, and Hot Stuff™

First Issue in Series Debuts Halloween 2009 timed with the 60th Anniversary of Casper’s debut in comic books

CASPER #1Ardden Entertainment, an exciting new force in the comic book industry, announced today the creation and launch of a spellbinding new comic book series based on well-known characters Casper the Friendly Ghost®, Wendy the Good Little Witch™, and Hot Stuff™. CASPER AND THE SPECTRALS will debut in the fall of 2009, timed with the Friendly Ghost’s 60th Anniversary as the title character in his own comics.

CASPER AND THE SPECTRALS is based on a concept by veteran comic book creator and writer J.M. DeMatteis and Ardden co-founder Brendan Deneen, and will be written by Todd Dezago and illustrated by Pedro Delgado. The series will introduce updated graphic designs, brand-new new themes and storylines for each character. Dezago has worked for Marvel, DC Comics, Image, and Dark Horse Comics for more than fifteen years on such titles as Spider-Man, X-Factor, Batman, Impulse, and the Justice League of America. He is best known for his quintessential run on Sensational Spider-Man with the late Mike Wieringo, and for his series, The Perhapanauts. A comics penciler and graphic designer, Delgado’s portfolio includes the Flash Gordon 75th Anniversary anthology book (The Secret History of Mongo), character designs for Funrise ToyCorp., several animated TV productions, and the redesign of DeviantART and L.A. Kings mascots.

Ardden Entertainment is the publisher of the critically-acclaimed monthly FLASH GORDON comic book series. The company, whose business model is to produce contemporized versions of classic licenses and exciting new creator-owned titles, was formed in 2007 by former Miramax/Dimension Films executive Deneen and former Markosia EiC, Richard Emms. Joining Deneen and Emms is DeMatteis, who works as Ardden’s Editor-in-Chief.

“Ardden Entertainment is extremely excited to be working with Classic Media on CASPER AND THE SPECTRALS,” said Emms. “Todd and Pedro have done an excellent job bringing the world’s most famous ghost into the 21st Century and we hope that this is the first of many adventures for us with Casper, Wendy and Hot Stuff.”

In this exciting new comic book, Casper and friends fight a fearsome threat from the past! There is a city within New York City known as Spooky Town, but most humans are unable to see it. Within this city live the Spectrals, the ghosts, goblins, demons and witches of the world…including Casper, Wendy and Hot Stuff! When an ancient entity known only as the Volbragg threatens both New York and Spooky Town, Casper and his friends are forced to band together and defeat an unimaginable evil!

CASPER #2

Ardden’s Merlin

Official press release below about an interesting new series from Ardden Entertainment (the publishers of the great Flash Gordon series). Sounds promising.

Ardden Entertainment is proud to announce that comic book industry legend J.M. DeMatteis and writer Derek Ivan Webster are teaming with artist Loren Meyer for THE MERLIN PROPHECIES, a genre-defying modern-day reinvention of the Camelot mythos.

merlin0_coverTHE MERLIN PROPHECIES is the story of John Myrddin, an emotionally-disturbed shipwreck of a man living in New York City’s East Village. John hears voices, too many voices, invading his dreams, haunting his days. One voice in particular stands out: a woman’s voice. And one night that voice leads him to Central Park. There, in the middle of a lake, John has an encounter with an ethereal woman that changes him, and will change the world, forever. Because John Myrddin now remembers the truth: He is none other than Merlin and the woman is the Lady of the Lake, who has been waiting centuries to reawaken the fabled wizard of Camelot. Now Merlin is on a mission to find, and train, a teenage boy who may one day redeem the world. But an ancient evil is also stalking the boy…and if it finds him first, our world may be forever lost….

DeMatteis, who also works as Ardden Entertainment’s Editor-in-Chief, comments, “This is a fresh spin on the Merlin legend. Although elements of Arthurian myth are woven throughout the story, THE MERLIN PROPHECIES is a very contemporary take: no magic swords. No dragons. No knights in shining armor. It’s city streets and shadows. Secrets hidden behind the veil of the modern world.

“I’m delighted to be collaborating with my friend Derek Ivan Webster, a Los Angeles-based writer and story consultant, whose knowledge of the Arthurian legends is encyclopedic. Loren Myer’s art is pitch perfect for the series: moody, mysterious, emotional, magical. We can’t wait to get to work on the mini-series and continue to explore this endlessly fascinating character.”

Ardden will debut THE MERLIN PROPHECIES #0 at the New York Comic-Con next weekend. The issue will feature an intense, character-driven story that takes place before the events of the mini-series, which will launch later in 2009.

Flash Gordon #1 Review

Flash Gordon has had more facelifts than an ageing starlet. The sci-fi character was created by Alex Raymond in 1934 as a newspaper strip hero to compete with Buck Rogers. However, good old Flash has fared much better. Most would be familiar with the character from the awesome 1980 film (sing it with me, “FLASH! AHAAA!), the late 80s Defenders of the Earth cartoon, or last year’s poorly received TV series. However, far too many people confuse the character with DC Comics’ Scarlet Speedster, much to the chagrin of fanboys everywhere.

Ardden Entertainment is the newest publisher in the comic book biz, with Flash Gordon being their sole release. After a #0 issue launched at the New York Comic-Con, we have the official debut of the blond adventurer’s latest re-imagining.

It begins much in the same way as MI:2, except without the catchy theme music. Flash is climbing a cliff, when his solitude is shattered by a phone call ordering him back to campus, where he earns his living as a teacher. Seeing the rugged heartthrob as a professor may be too far fetched for some, but thankfully, the university scenes are swift, as Flash shouts at his boss, and meets his long time “friend”, CIA agent Dale Arden. There’s some fisticuffs, gun pointing and witty remarks, before Flash is recruited for the CIA once more and told that his old friend scientist Hans Zarkov has gone rogue and is building a Weapon of Mass Destruction. Flash doesn’t believe it, but seems to be the only one who knows where Zarkov is hiding, so it’s off to Africa for the team. All doesn’t go smoothly though, as the pair face a betrayal and a mid-air collision, leaving the issue on a cliff-hanger, showing evidence of its comic strip origins.

I wasn’t expecting much with this title. A new publisher, with new creators and a franchise that has been re-invented more times than Madonna’s wardrobe does not bode well. I’m glad I was wrong. Writer Brendan Deneen and artist Paul Green are a formidable duo who know each other’s strengths. Deneen’s script keeps things moving at a frantic pace, yet it never seems rushed. Having legendary comic book scribe J.M DeMatteis (The Amazing Spider-Man) as Editor is also a great addition to Ardden. Green’s artwork is simple, yet certainly not simplistic. With few lines he manages to give the characters a real fluidity, and the colours are perfectly suited to each scene. With manga inspired pencils reminiscent of J. Scott Campbell or Joe Madureira, it’s a very pretty book, with a sense of dynamism and beauty.

Once the team leave earth and meet Ming, things will heat up even further I’m sure as the cast grows and alien environments and creatures start to appear, as can be previewed here. For those with fond memories of Flash Gordon this update should be welcome, and for those who’ve never experienced his swashbuckling antics, this is a great place to start.

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