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

 

 

 


Flash Gordon #6

From the fine folks at Ardden Entertainment (who I interviewed for Extra Sequential #2) is the long awaited last issue of their new Flash Gordon series, but a new series will debut shortly. Flash Gordon #6 has sold out via Diamond distribution, but re-order copies will be available soon, and available in August is the TPB collecting all 6 issues of The Mercy Wars. Info below.

In this thrilling conclusion to ‘The Mercy Wars’ story arc, Flash, Dale, Zarkov, Barin, Thun, Vultan and their army of Lion Men, Arborian Rangers, and Hawk Men take the fight directly to Ming’s palace! Meanwhile, a new, though familiar, threat rears its head, leading into the next exciting Flash Gordon arc!

Keep an eye out for FLASH GORDON: INVASION OF THE RED SWORD #1, coming this Fall!

Flash Gordon #6Flash Gordon: The Mercy Wars TPB

Flash #5 Now Out

This revamp, of sorts, of the classic Flash Gordon series from new publisher Ardden Entertainment has been pretty good, as was their recent Hard Cover anthology celebrating the character’s 75th anniversary. On sale right now is the penultimate issue of the current series. Written by Brendan Deneen with great art by Paul Green, #5 focuses on the attack on Ming’s floating citadel by Flash, Vultan and Thun, while Dale Arden wakes up and sees Ming for the baddie he really is. Beginning once the current Mercy Wars series wraps is a new series, entitled Flash Gordon: Invasion of the Red Sword.

FLASH5_COVERA

FLASH5_COVERB

Flash Fanatic

flashgordon alexrossSo apparently Frank Miller’s next film project after The Spirit, which opens on Christmas Day, will be Buck Rogers. That’s not very exciting really. The Sin City and 300 creator has a deft visual hand to be sure, but that doesn’t necessarily translate to box office mojo. I wouldn’t be surprised if The Spirit doesn’t set cinema screens ablaze, and if it doesn’t maybe he won’t get Buck Rogers after all.

A better choice would be Flash Gordon. He’s not as old as the Buckster, but is much more recognisable. (Even if non-geeks do confuse him with DC’s The Flash). The 1980 film starring Sam Jones and Timothy Dalton was glorious, especially with the unforgettable Queen soundtrack. Plus the classic character is on a high at the moment. Superstar painter Alex Ross is a fan and even helped BifBangPow! with their Series 2 figures based on the film, which you can pre-order now.

flashtoys

There’s also the excellent new series by Ardden Entertainment. The next issue, #4 is out next month and features Flash, Prince Thun, and the blonde Arborian ranger Eldun invading the Hawk Men’s floating prison city  to rescue Dr. Zarkov. It also features Prince Barin in the icy land of Frigia and Dale and Ming getting a little too cosy.

Really, Flash Gordon is begging for a film re-make. Just not by Frank Miller.

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.

Flash Gordon

Not to be confused with the DC Comics character who runs fast and wears a red costume, (that’s The Flash), Flash Gordon is the creation of comic strip artist, Alex Raymond. Conceived by Raymond in 1934, the character went on to star in three film serials in the 1930s and 40s, a TV series in the 50s, (and a recent, unpopular version) with a few cartoons along the way too. For many pop culture lovers (including painter Alex Ross), and Gen-Xers however, Flash’s most well loved incarnation would have to be the 1980 film. Who could forget Queen’s awesome theme song, the garish costumes, winged warriors, evil Timothy Dalton and a bald Max Von Sydow as Ming the Merciless? High camp has never been so much fun! CBR has a great round table discussion with the original creators and cast, involving the Star Wars inspiration, the film’s limited American success, and chasing dwarves around on set. Let the nostalgia wash over you. And while you’re reminiscing about awesome 80s films that flew under the radar, check out Krull from your local high quality DVD purveyor. Like Flash Gordon, it’s a film with fantasy and sci-fi elements, swash buckling and derring do, but Krull is much darker, with surprising deaths throughout. Check out the trailer below to either refresh your memory, or be introduced to another classic.

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