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“Face it Tiger” – Listen to the Mary Janes’ Hit Track from a Parallel Universe

by Matthew Meylikhov

If you’re anything like me, one of the first things you did yesterday was read Jason Latour and Robbi Rodriguez’s “Edge of Spider-Verse” #2, starring the instant interweb darling Spider-Woman aka Gwen Stacy on a parallel Earth. It was a fun comic, full of fantastic life and energy of an all-too-brief encounter with characters we need to see more of, and hopefully we’ll see more of her sometime soon.

But, if you’re also anything like me, then you also wanted to actually hear what Gwen’s band, the Mary Janes, sounded like. As the issue kicked off with them practicing their song “Face it Tiger,” the biggest complaint I had about the issue was that I couldn’t actually hear the track. I mean, why don’t comics have an audio component, right? What’s even the point?

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Bruce Timm’s Latest DC Animated Film to Get Digital Spin-off Series

by Matthew Meylikhov

We reported awhile back about Bruce Timm working on Justice League: Gods and Monsters, a new DC animated film. Reportedly not based on the Dan Jolley book of the same name, the details of Gods & Monsters are scarce; we know it’s an original film with Bruce Timm producing alongsideal an Burnett, Timm’s Batman: The Animated Series co-producer and writer — so, you know, hype levels: maximum and all that.

However, yesterday brought the news that this new film is going to get a little bit bigger as the online channel Machinima is going to be making a companion series called Justice League: Gods and Monsters Chronicles, which will debut online sometime next spring with three episodes. Little is known about what the film or series is directly about, but the Variety article does note that it will feature “much darker versions of the superheroes that people know.” Given how dark the New 52 is, with “Forever Evil” having just wrapped fairly recently, I’m curious to see how much darker we can get.

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Sound the Digi-Alarms: “Private Eye” #8 is Now Online

by Matthew Meylikhov

Now available on Panel Syndicate’s website, the latest issue of Marcos Martin and Brian K Vaughan’s self-published digital comic “The Private Eye” #8 is now available. Still available via the pay-what-you-want format, consider this your alert signal to rush over to the site and grab your issue. “Private Eye” is one of our favorite books, a series that consistently surprises and innovates within its landscape — and with the series capping off at issue #10, things are getting that more intense as Martin, Vaughan and colorist Muntsa Vicente kick the series into overdrive.

Suffice it to say: I’m excited to read the latest issue, and I think you should be too.

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ComiXology to Offer More DRM-Free Comics

by Matthew Meylikhov

The digital comics change is an ever-shifting one, something that seems to grow and evolve at a quicker rate than the advances of print comics. But today, there’s some great news on the digital front as DRM-Free comics become more of the collective norm.

Previously, ComiXology had announced that Image, Dynamite, Zenescope, Monkeybrain, Thrillbent and Top Shelf would be offering DRM-free comics with your downloads through the platform, in addition to any ComiXology Submit members who wanted to have that option. Today, however, the amount of publishers to now offer DRM-Free comics increases a great amount to now include IDW, Valiant, Oni, Fantagraphics, Aspen, Action Lab, Th3rd World, A Wave Blue World, Blind Ferret, Caliber, Creative Impulse, Devil’s Due, GT Labs and Kingstone.

There are only a few noteworthy publishers that are not participating in ComiXology’s DRM-Free programming, including but not limited to Marvel and DC. While I do not expect Marvel or DC are particularly interested, it is interesting to see note a few bigger publishers like Dark Horse and BOOM! not involved in the current announcement.

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Valiant Announces New Humble Bundle to Benefit Three Charities, including Doctors Without Borders

by Matthew Meylikhov

More and more as of late we’ve been seeing Humble Bundles pop up in conjunction with comics. A site that allows you to pay what you want for digital rewards at tiered levels, the proceeds of which can be given to charity, Humble Bundle and/or the curator of the Bundle, it’s an interesting system that publishers have been more frequently embracing. Ostensibly kicked off by the participation of Image Comics, we’ve seen publishers like BOOM! and Dynamite offering up digital copies of their books via the site.

Today, Valiant throws their hat into the ring. Offering up pretty much all of their current line-up of comics in digital trade form as well as an assortment of classic Valiant comics from the 90s, the bundle is worth up to $420 retail via the pay what you want donation system. You’ll be able to get some of my favorites right out the bat like “Quantum and Woody” and “Archer and Armstrong,” but the more you donate the more you can explore everything that Valiant has to offer, including “Rai,” “Unity” and “Eternal Warrior” — all which seem worth checking out as we head towards “The Valiant,” the upcoming series from Valiant, Jeff Lemire, Matt Kindt and Paolo Rivera.

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Art Of The Week: Week Of 09/17/2014

by Alice W. Castle

There are few things I like more than when artists showcase their favourite characters or rosters of characters. In the past I’ve showcased the favourite X-Men by the two artists above and this here was the answer to a challenge by Benito Cereno for an all-female Justice League roster. The top image is the roster picked by Kirs Anka while below it is Evan Shaner’s roster. DC, if you’re reading this, I would pay good money for this idea to come to fruition. Please.

Now, below is perhaps the biggest Art Of The Week I’ve put together during my time at Multiversity. There is a lot here, but it’s all stuff I really loved and couldn’t bring myself to not include. Enjoy!

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Alison Bechdel Named as a Recipient of the 2014 MacArthur Foundation’s “Genius” Grant

by Matthew Meylikhov

As seen over at Robot 6, today we have some great news: celebrated cartoonist Alison Bechdel has been awarded the incredibly prestigious John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation grant. One of 21 people awarded it this year, the grant offers Bechdel and the other recipients $625,000 distributed over five years quarterly with no strings attached, and is something given specifically to “extraordinarily creative people who inspure us all.”

For fans of her work, this is incredibly exciting news. As the cartoonist behind books like “Fun Home” and “Dykes to Watch Out For” (from which the famous ‘Bechdel test’, which puts films through a feminist prism and allows us to discuss the merits of female characters and tropes in storytelling, was born), the grant will essentially offer up Bechdel the opportunity through which to change how she works entirely. As Bechdel notes, she’ll be able to pay off debts and save for retirement, but she also now has the opportunity to use this money and opportunity to “take some risks, do something new — to really plunge into my work,” as she tells the LA Times.

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Mignolaversity: Witchfinder: The Mysteries of Unland #4 [Review]

by Mark Tweedale

I was sucked into this one right from page one. Julián Tedesco’s cover was perfect. It’s my favorite of the five he’s done for this series, and it set the right tone for everything to follow. I made a comment in my last review about finding the cliffhanger a bit unsatisfying. If the first page of this issue had been the last page of the previous issue, I would have felt completely differently though. Sir Edward falling asleep with nursery rhymes singing in his head, being driven away by an eel-infested Constable Lawless is instantly creepy. And then it gets creepier as the story plunges into Unland.

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Five Ways Agents of SHIELD’s Second Season Will Hopefully Improve Itself

by Matthew Meylikhov

Earlier this year and through some of the last, I was put in charge of reviewing Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD for this site, much to the chagrin of some site commentators and fans of the show (sorry, readers and that one guy on reddit who insisted I was a hater), I’m back for more!. Despite my reviews generally knocking the show down, though, every week I went in faithfully hoping that it would improve; that the mistakes that I was seeing and railing on the show were ones that were temporary flukes that would improve if I just stuck with it.

And, as I’ve noted in the past and I’ll note again, the show eventually did improve. In fact, I can honestly admit that I’m excited for the new season to start up again. However, where others may be excited to reconnect with these characters or see what happens to SHIELD after the bombs have gone off, I’m only excited for one reason: I want to see if the show learned its lessons or not. I want to see if the forward momentum present in the last handful of episodes has been retained, and that the show is going to be exciting to tune into every week.

Because here’s the thing: there is an abundance of comic book-based television coming our way. It’s hard enough keeping up with weekly comics at this point, so who has time for a show that’s not pulling its weight week after week? And given the inconsistent first season of SHIELD, who are we to give the benefit of the doubt?

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