Showing posts with label mirage studios. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mirage studios. Show all posts

Thursday, December 1, 2011

December Coloring Contest - Two Ways to Win!



Hello, December - It's contest time! I've been tossing this one around in my head for awhile and I think it should be fun!

This is a coloring contest, so entering is simple - Color one or both of the provided pictures, e-mail it to me, and you are entered in the contest.

"Easy"

"Hard"

RULES!

There are two different categories and two different ways to win. There is an "Easy" category, which is a classic piece of cartoon licensing art from the 90s, and there is a "Hard" category, which is the Eastman and Laird cover to the first TMNT movie comic book adaptation. The winner of the "Easy" category will be chosen at random from all entries received in that category. The winner of the "Hard" category will be my personal favorite entry in that category, judged based on overall skill and style. You can enter both categories, although you can only win one prize package. The pictures can be colored digitally, or print them and color traditionally.

PRIZES!

I am still determining what the prize packages will be, but they will definitely include a TMNT IDW Ashcan comic, a set of basic/common cards from the Upper Deck TMNT TCG, and a Ninja Pizza button. I'm going to try to find something Christmas-y to throw in, too. And maybe an additional surprise or two.

ENTER!

Entries will be accepted between now and 11:59pm PST on December 24, 2011. Entries should be e-mailed to me in either .JPG or .PNG format. Submitted entries will be posted to Facebook on a regular basis as they are received. Winners will be announced on or before December 31, 2011.

DOWNLOAD!

Download the "Easy" picture as a .PSD file, or get the .PNG to print.
Download the "Hard" picture as a .PSD file, or get the .PNG to print.
Download both .PSD files.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

IDW TMNT Hardcover Vol. 1 Cover Revealed



Amazon.com has (finally) posted the final cover art for the upcoming Ultimate Collection Vol. 1 hardcover from IDW, and it's some amazing brand new art by Kevin Eastman.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Ultimate Collection, Vol. 1 includes issues 1-7 + Raphael #1 of the original Mirage Studios comic books, and will feature brand new annotations by both Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird.

Retail price for the collection is $49.99, but you can currently pre-order it at Amazon.com for the steal price of $29.61. Amazon is still listing January, 2012, as the release date, but IDW has been saying October, 2011.


UPDATE: IDW Editor Chris Ryall has revealed Kevin's full wraparound art for this collection.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

The World Trade Center as the TMNT Saw It



Ten years ago today, the skyline of New York City changed forever. As the Turtles have always called New York home, that lost skyline was often seen throughout all the mediums in which TMNT stories have been told. To reflect on the time before September 11, 2001, here's a look at some of the reminders we are left with of the World Trade Center, as seen through the eyes of a TMNT fan.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)

The Twin Towers silently established the location of all three live-action TMNT movies.

TMNT 2: The Secret of the Ooze (1991)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3 (1993)









Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Mirage Auctions Original Art for Jake Black Cancer Benefit



Mirage is at it again! This week they're auctioning the original artwork used to create the Jake Black cancer benefit t-shirt and art print as an additional fundraiser for Jake! Awesomesauce! You can click each piece of art below to go to the respective auction. Bid high and bid often!


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Mirage Selling Art Prints on eBay for Cancer Benefit



You may recall that during last summer's convention season, Mirage Studios created two special TMNT art prints that they then sold to raise money to help Tales of the TMNT writer Jake Black pay some of the medical bills he accrued during his recent battle with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. The good news is that Jake is currently in remission and with luck his active battle against the cancer is over. However, those pesky medical bills still linger.

Mirage has found a handful of the remaining prints and they've put them up on eBay, with all money raised still going to Jake!

This first one is a "jam" piece featuring art by all of the artists who were still at the studio last year (2009).


The second print is quite monumental, as it features pencils by Kevin Eastman and inks by Peter Laird. This piece of art was the first piece the two TMNT creators collaborated on in over 18 years, and is most likely the last piece of art they will ever collaborate on.


If you weren't able to grab these last year, here's a great chance to pick up these incredible pieces of TMNT history while contributing to a great cause! You can click either picture to be taken directly to the respective eBay auction.

As a side note, I got to spend a little time with Jake this past weekend at WonderCon in San Francisco. He's looking great, and I hope things continue to go great for him!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Unpublished A.C. Farley Cover Sketch




Back in the 90s, Mirage Studios published a series of TMNT collected books that, err ... collected some of Mirage's TMNT comic book stories. Seven volumes were published and all seven volumes featured brand new art created exclusively for those covers by A.C. Farley. However, before the series of books got canceled after the seventh volume, Farley had sketched out the cover for what would have been volume 8. This volume would have included Mark Bode's Egyptian story (TMNT #32). And Mr. Farley was kind enough to share this sketch today on his Facebook page.

Too bad it wasn't to be!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

"The Forever War" Officially Canceled



So, how many times can you get over the cancellation of the TMNT Adventures conclusion, "The Forever War"? Having first been canceled when the title itself was canceled in the mid-90s, and after several on-and-off broken promises throughout this decade that Mirage would publish the 5-part story, fans were given hope that the project might actually see the light of day as it was put on Mirage's schedule as part of the 25th anniversary celebration.

As such, a lead-up TPB was released in July that collected key stories that would lead up to what we would see in "The Forever War." Unfortunately, circumstances seemed to put the project into a holding pattern and its release once again became uncertain.

Now, in light of the recent purchase of the TMNT by Nickelodeon/Viacom, Mirage has been forced to make a definitive decision on the fate of this title, and, unfortunately, the news isn't good news.

In an e-mail to long-time TMNT fan Andrew M., Steve Murphy has made it official that the story is canceled and will not be published.

To get a look at the story that might've been, you can head on over to Murphy's old 5th Turtle blog to see a small glimpse.

I suppose this really isn't unexpected, but it remains disappointing. Once again the Turtles don't get a proper farewell. Alas...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Panel To Panel Book Plate Now Available (Again!)



While supplies last, PanelToPanel.net is making the book plate pictured left, previously available with last year's Tales of the TMNT Vol. 5 TPB collection, once again available with copies of the original TMNT Collected Book Vol. 4 from 1990, which collects the classic story "Return to New York."

If you don't have this book plate, this is a deal you don't want to miss. If you don't have this collected volume, this is especially a deal you don't want to miss, since it seems unlikely that we'll be seeing these issues reprinted anytime soon, if ever again.

Get it!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Dan Berger Book Plate to be Included with TMNT #1 Color Reprint



As you'll recall, one of the first victims of last week's announcement was the canceled publication of the "Mirage Universe" book. And with no book to release, that left PanelToPanel.net's awesome Dan Berger-created book plate without a home.

No longer! The book plate will now be included with copies of the TMNT Vol. 1 #1 color reprint (below) that is scheduled for December. At only $3.25 a copy, it's a steal!

Visit PanelToPanel.net to order!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

What Happens Now: Questions and Some Answers



Obviously, questions are flying furiously since yesterday's out-of-the-blue announcement that Peter Laird has sold the entirety of the TMNT property to Nickelodeon/Viacom. I've managed to track down a few answers that may help provide some insight on what's about to happen.

First, a few people have released public, personal statements on this transaction:
  • Peter Laird - Co-creator of the TMNT, who allowed this sale to happen.
  • Jim Lawson - Long-time and beloved TMNT comic book artist.
  • Jake Black - Freelance Tales of the TMNT writer and source of inspiration for several fund raising efforts this year.

Some fans have noticed that certain parts of NinjaTurtles.com have disappeared, among them the catalog through which you could buy stuff directly from Mirage. Dan Berger reports, "We'll be starting a new web site soon where we're selling all the stuff we used to have posted."

Concerning the future of TMNT comic books, as Peter alludes to in his blog, some rights to publish comic books have been maintained. Dan was able to clarify that "Peter maintains the right to publish up to 18 TMNT comics per year that can be sold via the direct market and/or web site." To further clarify this, Dan states that Tales of the TMNT Vol. 2 will continue through to and conclude with issue #70, scheduled for next year. TMNT Vol. 4 will continue at a pace that only Peter Laird will be able to decide. Beyond that, they are (likely) allowed to do reprints, so long as they are between 32-48 pages, which rules out the publication of any trade paperbacks.

The inability to publish TBPs is why the "Mirage Universe" book, which had been scheduled for a December release, has now been canceled (as reported via Jake Black on Twitter and Facebook this morning).

When asked about "The Forever War" being published, Dan wasn't optimistic about its release, but added, "That's Murph's project." When asked, Steve Murphy's answer was, "I'm not sure."

While the TMNT have been sold lock, stock, and barrel to Nickelodeon/Viacom, Peter Laird stresses that he did not sell Mirage Studios. As Jim Lawson reported, Peter will continue to allow the artists to use their studio space, should they wish to. However, they would do so independently and not as Mirage Studios employees.

Dan states, "Mirage as an employer ends on December 31 of this year," then ads, "but the regular crew will be here at least 'til May as independent contractors." Dan himself forsees sticking around through at least the end of 2010.

Moving to the future as Nickelodeon has it planned, very little is known. There have been some unspecific reports that they already plan to head in a direction along the lines of the original 1980s cartoon. However, this has not been verified (and who knows if Nickelodeon is even 100% sure about which direction they'll be taking).

As for what happens with the current licensing deals already in place, a representative at Nickelodeon has stated to GamePro, "We plan on fulfilling all current obligations." This would apply to the current toy contract with Playmates Toys, as well as the video game contract with Ubisoft, among others.

The biggest unknown at the moment remains the fate of the planned movie. While a movie has been announced to be released in 2012, it is not known if this will be the same movie that had previously been on track for 2011 or if Nickelodeon will wipe the whole slate clean and begin anew. And if they do that, what direction will they take it? That is a question that remains unanswered for now.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Reflections on the Present, and the Potential of the Future



Someone said to me via Twitter this afternoon, "Please help me figure out how I am supposed to feel about the sale.. I am so confused!" Well, I can't tell you how you should feel about this, but perhaps by saying how I feel about this I can offer a bit of perspective.

I am not shocked, nor horrified, nor any degree of outraged or upset about the complete sale of the TMNT property to Nickelodeon.

Ok, I take one part of that back. While I'm not shocked that Peter Laird sold the TMNT to Viacom/Nickelodeon, I am a little surprised at the timing. Given the investment Mirage put into the TMNT 25th Anniversary (with no shortage of the use of the word "shell-ebrate"), it is rather shocking that in the same year Mirage (more specifically, Peter Laird) would "quit" the Turtles. And, similarly, I can't quite wrap my head around Mr. Laird's insistence on certain (and generally unpopular) creative decisions when he was apparently so willing and ready to wipe his hands clean of the whole thing for a "little" bit of cash.

I can't help but wonder just how long this deal has been in the works and how much of this "shell-ebration" has been a complete sham of a diversion from what was going on behind the scenes. Or, perhaps, it could be viewed as Mirage giving the TMNT, and the fans, one last "Hurrah!" before letting them go.

While deals like this really don't afford it, it would have been nice to have been given a little notice of these plans so that we, the fans, could return the favor and give a last little "Hurrah!" back to the creators and the creations that many of us have held onto for a significant part of our lives. There's still a little bit of time left before all strings are cut, so perhaps that opportunity still exists. But it seems that the TMNT are fated to never receive a proper farewell whenever they depart, be it from TV, comics, movies, or now the studio from which they were born. It seems that Mirage will once again become its illusionary namesake.

The future of the TMNT now rests in the creative hands of the people at Nickelodeon. What they do with them may be completely different from what you or I would like them to. But it doesn't change or erase the past 25 years. And, unbelievable as it may seem at the present moment, it is also entirely possible that what Nick does will be awesome. (After all, they're not exactly newbies to the world of green slime.)

The truth of the matter is that the TMNT have been flailing as a franchise for awhile. High expectations have fallen short, and some expectations haven't delivered at all. It certainly hasn't helped that Mr. Laird so obviously had lost the interest and motivation that would be required to set everything back on track again, and with a seemingly equal lack of motivation to get anyone else to do those things (or, simply, willingness to let anyone do those things).

This is the end of an era, and there are sad elements about it, and this fandom is in for some serious changes. But I am seriously hopeful and excited for what the future now brings. Because now I can at least see a potential for a bright and positive future, instead of more flailing that just makes the TMNT look a bit sad and pathetic. Because I know that, in fact, they are so, so capable of being so, so awesome.

A lot of questions still remain about how the transition from Mirage to Nickelodeon will proceed, but I say: Bring on the Future.

Monday, October 19, 2009

"Mirage Universe" Book with Exclusive Bookplate Available For Order



PanelToPanel.net now has the upcoming Mirage Universe sourcebook available for pre-order. While supplies last, all copies of the book ordered through PanelToPanel will include an exclusive book plate (below), created by Dan Berger. These always sell out quickly, so get your orders in now!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

"Tales of the TMNT" #62 Preview



Ryan Brown sent in this fantastic preview image from Tales of the TMNT #62, to be released later this month. I'm all overwhelmed by the adorableness of it all.

Pencils and colors: Fernando Leon Gonzalez, Inks: Ryan Brown

From NinjaTurtles.com:
"Adventures in Bunnysitting" - Michelangelo's Utrom friend, Klag, asks the good-natured ninja to take care of his pet bunny while he's away. Unfortunately for Raphael and Mikey, Klag was unaware that the rabbit was a test subject for mutagenetic studies - and once the little critter gets agitated, things go from bad to worse - much, much worse! Based on a true story... well, kinda...


You can read one side of the true story over here.

And now for a public service announcement, because this seems like a good opportunity to give a spiel on something rather important to me.

Rabbits make for the MOST awesome house pets!

Note the special emphasis on "house." Rabbits have a reputation for being animals that you keep in a hutch in the backyard where they stand all day on a floor of wire, but there really is no good reason for this and if you bring the rabbit into the house to live with the family you will discover a companion pet as fantastic as any dog or cat. Like cats, rabbits can be litter box trained, making the stereotypical wire floor cages completely unnecessary.

Like cats and dogs, it is essential that rabbits be spayed/neutered to not only help control the pet population, but also to increase the animal's overall quality of life. And it is also extremely important to adopt a rabbit from a shelter or rescue organization rather than buy one from a breeder or pet store or a farmers' market or flea market or any other questionable place. For a bargain adoption fee you'll get an already fixed animal and you'll save a life rather than support the unethical selling of animals for profit.

When I was looking for a companion pet last year and my living situation didn't allow for a dog and allergies keep me away from cats, I learned about house rabbits and ended up adopting a rabbit from a local rescue organization. Owen was overlooked for a long time because of his "plain" looks, but now everyone who meets him falls in love because he's one of the sweetest, friendliest bunnies you'll find. He is totally and completely the bestest thing I could have brought into my home.


For more information on house rabbits, you can visit the House Rabbit Society at rabbit.org.

There is also a good introduction to house rabbits video on YouTube:

Friday, July 17, 2009

Eastman & Laird Reunited!!!!



Yes, the headline is true! You might have thought it would take hell freezing over for the two co-creators of the TMNT to get over their apparent irreconcilable differences and collaborate artistically once again. But no, it didn't take that, it took a much more unfortunate reason. You see, my pal and occasional TMNT writer Jake Black has the Big C. Yeah, that's right: Cancer. The good news for Jake is that the specific type of cancer he has is Hodgkins Lymphoma, which has an extremely high cure rate. The bad news is that being extremely treatable doesn't make the treatments any less sucky and it doesn't make medical bills any less expensive. He's already won a battle with his insurance company to get them to cover his treatments, but you know they're not covering anything. And on top of that he's still got a wonderful family to support, which isn't as easy to do when you're sick and can't work as much as you're used to.

That brings us back to the headline. Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird have collaborated to create a commemorative art print, the sales of which will go to Jake's medical bills! I'm pretty sure that Kevin and Peter haven't collaborated in this form since the mid-90s and, honestly, the chances of this happening ever again are rare at best. What does that mean? It means you need to get yourself one of these!!

How do you get one? For now, you have to be attending San Diego Comic-Con next week. They will be for sale at the Mirage tables in Artists' Alley for the (extremely reasonable) price of $25. The edition sold at Comic-Con is limited to 100 pieces, but if you miss out or can't make the Con, don't fret too hard, it sounds like a non-Comic-Con edition of the print will eventually become available. Jake reports that there are also plans to put the image on T-shirts and posters.

The current Mirage crew collaborated on a print, also for Jake's benefit, that was first sold at a Free Comic Book Day event back in May. This print will also be available at Comic-Con next week for $20.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

More PanelToPanel.net Exclusive Book Plates



PanelToPanel.net has revealed more of their exclusive book plates that will be included with upcoming TMNT releases purchased directly from PanelToPanel!

TMNT Collected Book Volume 1 (pictured left), which collects what basically amounts to the Eastman & Laird collection of TMNT work, will include a book plate illustrated by Peter Laird and signed by BOTH Peter Laird and Kevin Eastman (below left).







Next, Kevin Eastman's upcoming 25th anniversary TMNT collection of his favorite stories (below left) will feature a book plate illustrated and signed by Kevin Eastman (below right).













Be sure to get your orders in now for both of these fantastic books and exclusives (just click any of the covers or book plates to be taken to the corresponding order page)! If you've already ordered the TMNT Adventures "Future Tense" TPB, just shoot John at PanelToPanel an e-mail asking for all of your orders to be combined for discounted shipping.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

"Future Tense" w/ Exclusive Book Plate Available for Pre-Order



PanelToPanel.net has posted the "Future Tense" trade paperback for pre-order! While supplies last, all copies of "Future Tense" ordered from PanelToPanel.net will include an exclusive bookplate featuring brand new art by TMNT Adventures artist Chris Allan. This book contains some of my all-time favorite TMNT stories, so you definitely don't want to miss it!



From NinjaTurtles.com:
Mirage Studios' first trade paperback collection of Archie Comics' "TMNT Adventures," collecting 8 issues of the classic comic book series: #42-44 ("The Future Shark Trilogy") and #62-66 (the "Dreamland" 5-issue story arc). All issues feature the "future Turtles" and act as a lead-in to the upcoming all-new "Forever War" mini-series!

Here's a preview of the bookplate that will be included:

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Forever War: 5-Part Mini-Series Beginning August '09



When the TMNT Adventures title from Archie was canceled in 1995, it was done abruptly and premature. A new story titled "The Forever War" had been already solicited for several months, but it didn't matter... the title went kaput. (For a little background on that story, check out these old posts from the 5th Turtle: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5.)

In recent years Mirage has teased us, saying that they would publish this "lost" story... but still, it never came. Until now!! Using the 25th anniversary as a pretty good excuse, wheels are really turning and "The Forever War" will finally see print! There's been a lack of details as to when and how we'd see it, but the answers seem to have finally arrived.

Cap e-mailed in with the above picture, which is a full-page advertisement for "The Forever War," stating it will (still) be in five parts and the first will be shipping in August (I think the previous best guess had been September). To make sure that your comic shop orders the book (and saves you a copy!) just print out the ad and bring it in to them - The information at the bottom will help ensure that they get it for you!

This scan is from the back of the Free Comic Book Day reprint of TMNT Vol. 1 #1 - Don't forget to visit your local comic shop on May 2nd to pick up your copy of that book!!

Monday, March 9, 2009

TMNT Flashback: 1989 Comic Book Store Signing



In a real testament to the idea that "You can buy anything on eBay," I recently acquired some photographs out of of someone's personal collection. The idea of buying someone's personal photos is a bit creepy, but these seemed interesting enough for me to get past that. And I'm glad I did, because in addition to being a truly fantastic blast from the past, there are some really interesting details hidden in the background. These pictures appear to be date stamped August 12, 1989 - nearly 20 years ago!



These first two pictures are pretty similar and feature Steve Lavigne behind the table. I think you can also see a piece of Peter Laird's head in the first picture. What is really great though is in the background there appears to be pictures of the Turtles and Splinter costumes for the then-upcoming movie. The movie filmed in September 1989, so this was even before then!



Here we have one more picture of Steve Lavigne, then a shot farther down the line looking back at both Steve and Peter. In the second photo you can get a slightly better look at one of the photos on the wall.



And here we have a better look at Peter, and finally Kevin Eastman as well. Now we can see a few more pictures on the back wall as well as some comic book covers (and cereal boxes!).



Last, but far from least, we see the end of the autograph line with Jim Lawson, Michael Dooney, and Steve Murphy.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

NYCC: Friday Night Mirage Panel



Friday night at NYCC there was a panel featuring four long-time TMNT artists: Steve Lavigne, Michael Dooney, Jim Lawson, and Eric Talbot. Moderated by occasional TMNT writer Jake Black, the panel was meant to focus on the artistic evolution of the TMNT. I don't know if they hit that mark exactly, but it was still a good hour-long conversation with these guys who have had so much creative input into the TMNT throughout the years.

Mega TMNT fan (and reliable videographer) Neil came through with video of most of this panel for those of us stuck in parts of the world that are too far from NYC. You can check out the panel, in five parts, below.










Monday, January 19, 2009

The End of "Tales of the TMNT"?



It has been made widely known that the Tales of the TMNT comic book title exists on the whim of Peter Laird, who has continued to publish the book, for the most part out of his own pocket, even though it doesn't sell enough copies to support itself. As such, TMNT fans head toward each new year wondering if Tales will still be around. As of right now, there is no confirmation for Tales' existence--or non-existence--in 2010; however, it seems that Diamond Comic Distributors may have made that decision for Mirage already.

Newsarama is reporting today that Diamond has raised its purchase order minimum from $1,500 to $2,500. This means that in order for Diamond to list and distribute a title, it would need to generate $2,500 of revenue for Diamond (not total). The break down of this is basically that "a typical $3.00 comic would have to sell over 2,100 copies to meet the benchmark." Tales currently sells for $3.25/book.

The most recent sales data available, for November 2008, lists estimated sales of 2,381 for Tales. In comparison, the January 2008 estimated sales were 2,684. In the months in between, at least the ones where Tales was ranked in the top 300, a steady decline in sales can be seen. Thus, it can be concluded that Tales hangs dangerously close to being below Diamond's newly required threshold.

There are about three possibilities for titles that do not currently meet the new threshold:
  1. Raise the cover price.
  2. Find different means of distribution.
  3. Cancel the title
Some titles are likely to move to Web-only, but as we've seen with TMNT Vol. 4, TMNT fans want their Turtles on paper, making that an unlikely option for Mirage. It appears that this new change is immediate, although a grace period to allow publishers to achieve the newly required numbers is likely. This will make it extremely difficult for Tales to even get to the end of 2009, and, given Mirage's publishing history, makes cancelation come 2010 nearly certain.

That said, nothing is set in stone. And if you don't pick it up already, now is the time to go to your comic book shop and let them know that you want Tales of the TMNT!