If you ask any comic book fan what imprint is doing the most work to put out consistently great, hard-hitting, creator-driven comics these days, most of the time you’ll get Vertigo Comics as an answer. So when they assemble some of their best talent on one stage at New York Comic Con, the audience was certainly in for a treat. I was front row center for the panel, lead by Vertigo’s editor Karen Berger.
The panel included Brian Azzarello (Spacemen, 100 Bullets), Jason Aaron (Scalped), Scott Snyder (American Vampire), Rebecca Guay (A Flight of Angels), Jeff Lemire (Sweet Tooth), Phil Jimenez (Fairest), Douglas Rushkoff (A.D.D.), Marzena Sowa (Marzi), Sylvain Savoia (Marzi), Phil Jimenez (Fairest), and introduced Selwyn Seyfu Hinds, writer for the much-anticipated upcoming series, Voodoo Child.
Now, while there is so much that was talked about at the panel, the following are my top five announcements about upcoming Vertigo content. Some honorable mentions will be included as well, and there are photos of the slides that went up. So enjoy!
Fairest is another spin-off from the Fables universe, focusing this time on the women of Fables like Snow White, Rose, and even Sleeping Beauty. Phil Jimenez has come on over to Vertigo from his previous work on comics like Infinite Crisis, Wonder Woman, and X-Men to bring his gorgeous artwork to the lush Fable world. The cover for the first issue, showcasing the gorgeous ladies of Fable fame was done by Adam Hughes, and the center woman gives a hint to the focus of the first storyline. The first pages teased to the audience show finally what happened to Sleeping Beauty and what some folks will do to try to cash in on a sleeping princess! While spin-off series can sometimes be lacking, the Fables world allows for so much intricacy that I think it can hold up another title.
Moving away from the fantasy world of Fables, we have Marzi. Written by Marzena Sowa with art by French artist Sylvain Savoia, Marzi is the autobiographical story of Marzena’s life in Iron Curtain Poland. The collection, Marzena explained during the panel, was born out of her need to collect the stories of her youth to share with her partner Sylvain, who then suggested creating a comic book. The comic has previously been released in Europe but is now available in the United States. The sparse art gives the comic a simple yet elegant structure and brings us intimately into a child’s story that can be read by young and old alike.
3. A Flight of Angels
The creation of the incomparable artist Rebecca Guay, A Flight of Angels is a graphic novel that brings together some of the best fantasy and comic writers to frame a collection of stories about angels. With the art by Ms. Guay herself and stories penned by writers like Holly Black, Bill Willingham (Fables), and more, this collection isn’t just a good story — it’s a unique piece of artwork in itself. The stories will center around the ups and downs of the angelic powers that be, with Ms. Guay truly capturing the majesty and beauty of angelic creatures. This book should be looked at for the art alone, but with a cast of writers like the group on this book, it promises to be both gorgeous and well-done.
2. Voodoo Child
The creation of author Selwyn Seyfu Hinds, Voodoo Child is the story of Dominique LaVoux, a daughter of New Orleans and a descendent of one of its most notorious and legendary characters. When the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans is murdered after the events of Hurricane Katrina, the supernatural world in town is thrown into chaos. Enter the mortal descendent of Marie LaVoux, and we will watch what happens as she is placed in the crosshairs of supernatural politics in town. What makes this title so interesting is Hinds’ promise that the title will deal with just as much mortal reality of New Orleans as it will the supernatural. I’m excited to see what Mr. Hinds does with voodoo as well, as he promises it will not be what folk expect from typical well stereotyped voodoo stories. Instead, it will focus on interaction with the loa (gods of the African continent) and their interaction with mortals as a pantheon. Of all of the announcements, this one had me the most excited.
1. Saucer Country
Vertigo perked up everyone in the audience with their announcement of a brand new title, called Saucer Country. Written by Paul Cornell (Demon Knights, Stormwatch) with art by Ryan Kelly, this story will follow the governor of New Mexico who is abducted by aliens just when she’s about to run for president! Launching in February of 2012, this comic provides a slightly off the wall way to explore both politics and UFO-ology, and the backdrop of an election for the highest office in the land will certainly lend to some powerful storytelling. This is the one to look out for, I believe, though Vertigo did hint that this was not the last new title they will be announcing. So stay tuned for more of that!
Shout outs also go to Douglas Rushkoff for his commentary comic A.D.D which will deal with a world where kids are raised from the get-go to utilize their A.D.D. wired brains to be essentially players in the ultimate video games.
The new run of American Vampire will take us to the 1950’s and introduce a brand new character who hunts vampires and then takes a bite out of them when he’s got his vamp!
The Unwritten will be taking main character Tommy into war against the Cabal as Tommy tries to take the fight to his enemies in the newest storyline.
There was quite a lot more, but at a place like Vertigo, we can always expect great content to be rolling out the door at any moment. Plus, this is only day one of New York Comic Con. Who knows what else we’ll find out?
Shoshana Kessock is a comics fan, photographer, game developer, LARPer and all around geek girl. She’s the creator of Phoenix Outlaw Productions and ReImaginedReality.com