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Moviegoers Assemble! The Avengers From Comics to Film

copyright Alex Ross

Over the weekend, Marvel’s “The Avengers”  passed $1 billion in worldwide box office. After raking in $207.4-million last weekend (a record for the biggest opening — not adjusting for inflation) the comic book adaptation piled up an additional $103.2 million in its second weekend of domestic release. (Kaufman, Los Angeles Times)

What’s more, The Avengers is getting very good reviews. Knowing all of this, the 8-year-old version of me would be shocked and appalled that I haven’t yet seen this movie. After all, I still love comics (as readers of this blog probably know) and the superhero blockbusters of today are mostly high quality action/adventure films that I want to see just simply because they’re good. Not to worry, 8-year-old me, I’ll finally be seeing The Avengers tonight.

Fans have been looking forward to The Avengers ever since Iron Man (starring Roberty Downey, Jr.) was released in 2008. Now that most of the principal Avengers characters have had their own movie (or two), the stars have aligned and director Joss Whedon‘s Avengers has not only been released, but it’s smashing records like the Hulk smashes, well, everything.

Though I’ve waited out the really big crowds, I’m very excited that I’m finally seeing the movie. In honor of The Avengers film, I’d like to suggest you read some really great Avengers stories from the library’s collection. Have any questions? Leave a comment or attend this month’s meeting of Out of the Gutter: CLP’s Graphic Novel Discussion Group.

Avengers Assemble!

a list of great Avengers graphic novels

For all Avengers comic collections, click HERE.

Essential Avengers (v. 1-6) – Co-created by Stan Lee and the immortal Jack “King” Kirby (also the original illustrator), The Essential Avengers features black and white reprints of the original Avengers issues from the 60s. Here you’ll find the first appearances of Kang the Conqueror, Immortus, and the Masters of Evil as well as the return of Captain America in issue #4.


Avengers/Defenders War by Steve Englehart ; pencilers, Bob Brown & Sal Buscema– So you’ve read The Avengers’ origin story, now you need to pick up this classic 70s crossover. Long before event books became the norm, Avengers/Defenders was a rare crossover, but unlike today’s big events, Avengers/Defenders is self-contained, clear, and concise. In this story, the demon Dormammu’s planned conquest of  the universe is underway when he enlists the aid of a blind Loki. The Defenders unwittingly help the villain which puts them at odds with “Earth’s Mightiest Heroes”, The Avengers. If you’re reading Avengers vs. X-Men, you will be interested in hero vs. hero fights like: Dr. Strange vs. Black Panther and Mantis, Vision and Scarlet Witch vs. Silver Surfer, and Iron Man vs. Hawkeye.


Avengers/Invaders by Alex Ross and Jim Krueger – The original Invaders (Captain America, Bucky, Human Torch, Toro, and, Namor the Sub-Mariner) return, courtesy of Alex Ross. The Marvel Universe’s first super team finds itself transported from the battlefields of World War II to the present where they encounter two teams of Avengers who, post Secret Invasion, wonder whether or not they can trust these heroes.

Avengers Disassembled by Brian Michael Bendis and David Finch – The proverbial crap hits the fan in this, the beginning of Brian Michael Bendis’ run on Avengers. A recently deceased Avenger returns…as a zombie! She-Hulk goes nuts, Ant-Man dies, and an Avenger is responsible for all of it! This is a great jumping-on point for current Avengers readers. Start here and follow Bendis all the way to the present if you want to get to know the current Avengers roster.


New Avengers: Breakout! by Brian Michael Bendis – In the wake of the systematic destruction of the original Avengers, just what sort of threat to the world could persuade Captain America to assemble an all-new team? Try a breakout at The Raft, a prison where all of Marvel’s most dangerous super-villains and ne’er-do-wells reside. Check out the new lineup here: Cap, Iron Man, Spider-Man and Wolverine! Fate has brought them together, and now Captain America wants to make it permanent! Who will take his hand and join the new Avengers? And will they be strong enough to fight the mysterious forces at play around them?

Excelsior!

Corey, Digital Learning Librarian

Good News for Hero and Perry Moore Fans!

According to Newsarama, Stan Lee made a surprise guest appearance at the San Diego Comic-Con’s “LGBT Portrayals in Comics” panel to announce a budding partnership with Perry Moore, the author of Hero. What that partnership actually entails is still up for spectulation (do I smell a movie?).

Hero gained a great following for its epic portrayal of superheroics through the eyes of gay teenager Thom Creed. Thom must navigate both his budding sexuality and superpowers while under the watchful eye of his disapproving, ex-hero father–all while an unseen assailent is murdering the world’s superheroes. While plots and mysteries abounded, Perry Moore managed to keep the book grounded in the characters. It was an altogether exceptional debut.

In the midst of comic-based blockbusters, Hero stands out as a story in which superheroics can be just as much about being oneself as it is about saving the world. And personally, it was nice to finally see a queer superhero save the day (take a look at Moore’s essay “Who Cares about the Death of a Gay Superhero Anyway?” to see what fates have befallen the others).

Joseph
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main

Hellboy @ Your Library

Hello everyone! My name is Eva, and I am the new Teen Librarian at CLP-Knoxville. My favorite color is blue, my favorite book is Jane Eyre, and my favorite superhero is Hellboy.

 

So who exactly is this Hellboycharacter, you ask? A giant, red demon withfiled-off horns, a right hand made of stone, and a general dislike for any creature or evil genius that that threatens humankind. He is member of B.P.R.D, or the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense. This group includes Liz Sherman, a woman with pyrokinetic abilities that she sometimes has trouble controlling; Abe Sapien, a human-amphibian hybrid witha talent for telepathy; and many other characters with special powers.

 

The Hellboy character was created by Mike Mignola in 1993, and is featured in many Dark Horse Comics graphic novel series, including Hellboy, Weird Tales, and B.P.R.D. There is also an animated series!

 

The first Hellboy movie (based on the graphic novel Hellboy: Seed of Destruction), was released back in 2004. After four long years of waiting, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, is going to be released in theaters on Friday, July 11th! Finally!

 

Click here see all the Hellboy graphic novels and DVDs in CLP’s collection. You should definitely check them out if you are planning on seeing the new movie!

 

Eva

CLP-Knoxville

Free Comic Book Day 2008 – Saturday May 3rd, 2008

 

 

Free Comic Book Day is a single day when participating comic book shops across North America and around the world give away comic books absolutely free to anyone who comes into their stores.”

***

From manga to horror, superhero comics to those wacky teens from Riverdale, Free Comic Book Day has what you need!  What a great way to get into comics, or — if you’ve fallen off the wagon — what a great time to get back in the habit!  Check out these local comic shops this Saturday to see what it’s all about:

Phantom of the Attic @ 406 South Craig St. in Oakland.  Open 10 AM to 7 PM on Saturday.

The Copacetic Comics Company @ 1505 Asbury Pl. in Sq. Hill.  Open 11 AM to 5 PM on Saturday.

Eide’s Entertainment @ 1121 Penn Avenue, Downtown.  Open 9:30 AM to  6:30 PM on Saturday.

***

And remember, comics are always free at the library!  We’ve got thousands of graphic novels, manga and zines to choose from.  Stop by the teen desk and we’ll recommend something great.

– Corey W.

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main – Teen

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