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Tag Archive: Brian Churilla


Big Trouble Ish 3   RoboCop 2014

BOOM! Studios is continuing two fun retro-series this week based on classic 1980s movies.  First, Big Trouble in Little China, based on the John Carpenter movie starring Kurt Russell, continues the crazy antics of Jack Burton in San Francisco’s Chinatown.  And Robocop: Dead or Alive You’re Coming With Me is the latest RoboCop continuation series.

Big Trouble in Little China is written by John Carpenter and Eric Powell, with artwork by Brian Churilla and colorist Michael Garland.  RoboCop is written by Joshua Williamson, with artwork by Carlos Magno and colorist Marissa Louise.

After the break you’ll find previews for Big Trouble in Little China, issue #3, and RoboCop, Issue #2, courtesy of BOOM! Studios.  Both will be released tomorrow, August 6, 2014.

BigTroubleInLittleChina03_coverA

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Noto Sleepy Hollow

One independent comic book publisher drew our attention this week more than the others.  BOOM! Comics has two new comic issues out tomorrow for sequel stories to classic films–Big Trouble in Little China and RoboCop–and it made an announcement about a new series coming our way based on the television show Sleepy Hollow.  We’ve got previews of Big Trouble and RoboCop after the break and first images from Sleepy Hollow.

John Carpenter and BOOM! Comics’ Big Trouble in Little China monthly is so much fun you’ve got to be adding it to your pull list at your local comic book store.  Following the adventures of Jack Burton after the events of the original 1980s film, it’s a sequel that might as well be titled “The Sequel” with the same spirit, humor, and visuals as the original.  Big Trouble is co-written by the great John Carpenter with Eric Powell and art by Brian Churilla of (the awesome) The Secret History of D.B. Cooper fame.

BigTroubleLittleChina_02_coverA    Robocop_001_coverA

The other sequel-that-might-as-well-just-be-called-a-sequel is BOOM!’s new RoboCop series.  Written by Joshua Williamson with art by Carlos Magno, the new series is far different from other recent RoboCop monthlies including Frank Miller’s version, and will be a welcome relief for fans of the classic movie who couldn’t or wouldn’t check out the reboot.  That means look for plenty of the ugliest view of Detroit you’ve ever seen, lots of violence, crime, and over-the-top bullets flying.  Too bad all the big baddies were killed in the original movie as they’d feel right at home here.

Robocop_001_coverB    BigTroubleLittleChina_02_coverB

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BigTrouble_01_coverA   Frank Cho color Big Trouble cover

Who would have thought that a sequel to Big Trouble in Little China would look a lot like Clint Eastwood’s Every Which Way But Loose?  Actually it makes sense.  Eastwood’s Philo Beddoe had his big rig and his trusty companion orangutan Clyde.  Kurt Russell’s Jack Burton also has his own big rig, and in Issue #1 of BOOM! Studios new monthly comic book series Big Trouble in Little China, he brings along his own slobbery companion for John Carpenter’s 1980s trip back through Chinatown.

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Or maybe this is more like Han Solo and Chewbacca?  Or the 1980s Flash Gordon movie?  Whatever it is, it’s crazy fun, and Kurt Russell hasn’t looked this good since, well, since his Big Trouble in Little China.  Will Kim Cattrall’s Gracie Law make an appearance?  James Hong’s Lo Pan make a visit from the other side?

You’ll just have to check out the series to find out.  And keep an eye out for a whopping FOURTEEN cover variants for this issue, including covers by Frank Cho and Adam Hughes.

Gabriel Hardman Big Trouble part 2Gabriel Hardman Big Trouble cover

After the break check out a preview of Issue #1 courtesy of BOOM! Studios:

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By C.J. Bunce

As recently as August 2011, 40 years after a man hijacked a flight from Portland to Seattle, the legendary D.B. Cooper was the subject of a new lead in the FBI’s investigation of America’s only unsolved hijacking.  An Oklahoma woman came forward suggesting that when she was eight years old her uncle revealed amassing the stolen fortune in the days after Cooper took $200,000 and a parachute and vanished over the Pacific Northwest on the November 24, 1971.  In 1980 $6,000 of the bills washed ashore, found by a kid playing at a beach.

So did D.B. Cooper survive?

Writer/artist Brian Churilla suggests in his new mini-series from Oni Press that maybe there was something more sinister going on in the fall of 1971, and that D.B. Cooper was a trained assassin turned rogue agent of the CIA.  Why the skyjacking?  Cooper went on the run and the publicity was an effort to enlist the public to flush out and track down Cooper.

Far-fetched?

You bet!  But that’s the stuff of good comic book action.  In issue #1 of The Secret History of D.B. Cooper, Churilla goes off in even more bizarre directions, showing that Cooper also was a bit of a dream traveler like Dennis Quaid’s character in the 1984 cult sci-fi classic Dreamscape.  And just like in Dreamscape, the government enlisted Cooper to murder targets in their sleep, stumbling through a frenzied dream world in the process.

Unlike Dreamscape, Churilla takes off in a surreal direction like something you might find in the pages of Animal Man, where reality is blurred with otherworldly elements, with Cooper using the resources of a one-armed teddy bear sidekick.  Yes, that’s right, a one-eared teddy bear.  With a sword even.

The above description might have the more mainstream audiences running for cover, but for those that like a good alternate history mixed with X-Files overtones, this series may be up your alley.  A good introductory story, issue #1 suggests this independent publisher mini-series could get a foothold with readers of the big comic publishing houses.  And it’s plain fun.

First, Animal Man is big right now, and the over the top, supernatural imagery of The Secret History should attract readers of that popular DC Comics series.

Second, Churilla picked a great hook using D.B. Cooper as his hero.  In more than 40 years he is still thought of not like every other airplane hijacker of all time, but is constantly referred to as “an American folk hero,” achieving something of a mythic status like Jesse James and Bonnie and Clyde.  The FBI has investigated over 1,000 suspects over the years, documented several deathbed confessions, a movie, The Pursuit of D.B. Cooper starring Treat Williams, and several non-fiction books.  Yet, Cooper has hardly been used as the subject of a good, creative retelling.

Third, a buddy cop story where one buddy is a teddy bear.  ‘Nuff said.

Fourth, like the popular NBC TV series Grimm, The Secret History takes place in the great Pacific Northwest, home of the X-Files and Twin Peaks, prime real estate for a creepy and cool supernatural detective story.

Finally, Churilla’s art and colors has a very Mike Mignola quality and the writing also reads like a Hellboy story from Mignola.

One alternate cover version is available, drawn by Batwoman writer/artist J.H. Williams III.

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