Sunday, August 22, 2010

From IDW to Dark Horse

I intended to take a little mini-break between Seasons 4 and 5 of Angel, but I forgot about all of the special features that I need to watch on the last DVD for Season 4. I'll post reviews if I find anything interesting.

What's really catching my eyes are the official announcements that the Angel comics series is moving from IDW Publishing back to Dark Horse Comics in late 2011. (I understand Dark Horse published some Angel comics during the original run of the TV series.) There are too many good links for me to deal with, so I'll just direct you to the Whedonesque thread if you're interested.

I have so little information I shouldn't even be writing this, but from what I understand, Angel will be joining the Buffy the Vampire Slayer franchise over at Dark Horse. I also understand that there was some recent controversy when Angel himself started appearing as somewhat of a bad guy in some of the Buffy comics, which apparently did not sit well with the people at IDW. Then you start getting into the issues of who has artistic control, the publishers or Joss Whedon (who I understand has been alternating between hands-on and hands-off over the years), and it gets really messy.

The Whedonesque thread also highlights the question of, which comics are canon? I know this is veering dangerously into the "get a life" category, but it means a big deal for me to be able to know ahead of time which comics I read are "real" and which are written for pure entertainment purposes, where I can just file the story lines into the basement when I'm done reading them. If, by judging the Whedonesque comments, there are no easy answers, then I'm less likely to shell out money for Angel-related comics beyond what I've already paid for with After the Fall Volumes 1-4. As an aside, I always thought all of After the Fall was considered to be canon, but I understand that some people feel that might not necessarily be the case.

We not only have Angel comics, we have Spike, Illyria and who-knows-what-else comics out there. I already feel hopelessly behind as it is, and that brings up another issue. There are so many Angelverse comics out there, I don't know how I could even formulate a plan of action to get caught up on my reading.

Regardless, I have a sentimental attachment to Chris Ryall and all of the other good people at IDW because they helped get me hooked on comics for the first time as an adult. They taught me that there's a lot more to comics than the Archie and Jughead variety I'd been reading to my kids over the years. IDW will be publishing a few more Angel comics that are already in the pipeline, and I understand all of the parties are busy collaborating with each other in order to keep the continuity intact between publishers. IDW seems to be handling the transition with a lot of class.

I fully understand that business is business, and it certainly makes sense to put all of the Buffyverse comics under one roof. Good luck to everyone who's involved in this. Thank you IDW for all of the good work you've done in the past, and best wishes to Dark Horse for their future success.

(Note: As usual, if I've made any horrible mistakes in this post, please correct me in the comments section.)

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