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Friday, March 9, 2001


Work is already well under way on the second season of X-Men: Evolution for Kids' WB!, which announced its renewal on Thursday.

Beginning next season, X-Men: Evolution will air on Saturdays at 11 a.m. (ET), with 13 episodes to be produced at Film Roman.

Boyd Kirkland returns as producer. Greg Johnson, who shared story editor duties with Bob Forward in the first season, will handle them by himself in the second.

"Season Two will take several unexpected turns, while introducing you to a few new characters, of which I'll have to remain vague about until I get the WB's approval on what we can divulge," Johnson told The Continuum. "Unlike the beginning of last season, we will not be introducing new characters in every episode. Just a few here and there, but basically we think it would be a mistake to overpopulate the show.

"For this 13, look for more character development and continuity designed to carry over from one episode to the next -- sometimes not paying off until many episodes later. This allows us to delve deeper into who these teenagers are, how they feel about themselves, their relationships with one another, and the challenges they face in maintaining 'normal' friends. But even with this focus on interpersonal relationships, don't worry, there's still plenty of exciting X-Men action in every show."

Johnson said that most of the second season has been planned out in terms of stories.

"Writing-wise, we have show #14, 'Growing Pains,' already final and in pre-production. Episodes 15 through 18 are in various stages of development."

Johnson will be writing some of the second-season episodes himself. Other contributing writers include Steve Granat, Cydne Granat, Doug Molitor and Brian Swenlin.

Johnson said he is working closely with producer Kirkland on the story lines. "We share a very similar vision for the show," he said.

X-Men: Evolution will continue to be voice-recorded in Vancouver.

KIDS' WB! FOR 2001-2002

Kids' WB! announced its schedule for the 2001-2002 season on Thursday, and it includes the return of comics-based shows X-Men: Evolution, Static Shock, Batman Beyond and The Zeta Project.

The network has ordered 13 new episodes each of Static Shock and X-Men. Batman Beyond will continue, although no new episodes are being produce, and the network has place an order for the Batman Beyond spin-off, The Zeta Project, although it was not listed in the lineup.

Here's the network's Saturday lineup:

8 a.m.: Static Shock.

8:30 a.m.: Pokemon: Johto League Champions.

9 a.m.: The Mummy.

9:30 a.m.: Jackie Chan Adventures.

10 a.m.: Pokemon: Johto League Champions.

10:30 a.m.: Cubix.

11 a.m.: X-Men: Evolution.

11:30 a.m.: The Nightmare Room.

Here's the network's weekday lineup:

7 a.m.: Batman Beyond (Monday-Thursday), Rescue Heroes (Friday).

7:30 a.m.: Sherlock Holmes in the 22nd Century (Monday-Thursday), Rescue Heroes (Friday).

3 p.m.: Cardcaptors.

3:30 p.m.: Pokemon.

4 p.m.: Pokemon: The Johto Journeys.

4:30 p.m.: Jackie Chan Adventures.

Here's how Kids' WB! describes its new shows:

* Rescue Heroes: Global Response Team: "This show follows the extreme emergency team around the world on their nail-biting adventures in this all-original series produced for Kids' WB! Using their brains, skills, teamwork -- plus awesome, cutting-edge gadgetry, the Rescue Heroes are always prepared to save anyone, anywhere on the globe in life-threatening situations. Whether they are dispatched to a runaway Japanese bullet train or a crisis at an underwater marine world, this extraordinary team of men and women will always be on call and ready for their next challenging mission. Many stories from this FCC-friendly series are drawn from real-life news headlines and will feature safety tips and positive life lessons for all the "would-be rescue heroes" watching at home. Each adrenaline-pumping half-hour will include two distinct action-packed 11-minute episodes. Rescue Heroes: Global Response Team is produced by Nelvana."

* Sherlock Holmes In The 22nd Century: "The show brings the world's greatest detective back for more mystery-solving, crime-fighting adventures in the futuristic world of the 22nd Century. When Inspector Beth Lestrade of New Scotland Yard, eagerly brings Sherlock Holmes back to life, as a young 25-year-old man, they join forces to protect the once-peaceful future from an unprecedented crime wave. In an effort to assist Holmes -- just like the good ole' days, they have programmed his beloved loyal friend and associate, Dr. John Watson, into the brain of an android. They quickly lock wits once again with their eternal adversary, Professor James Moriarty, who is determined to dominate the crime-free world of the future. The dynamic detective duo and their partner Inspector Lestrade once again dare to solve the unsolvable in every mystery-packed adventure. Sherlock Holmes In The 22nd Century is co-produced by DIC Entertainment and Scottish Television."

* The Mummy: "This show is based on Universal's blockbuster feature film franchise The Mummy and this spring's upcoming sequel The Mummy Returns. This animated series follows the adventures of 11-year-old Alex O'Connell, along with his parents, Rick and Evy. Alex appears to have the perfect childhood: travelling the globe with his parents, excavating ancient ruins...and did we mention, fleeing for his life from a hostile mummy. When the all-powerful 'Manacle of Osiris' locks onto his wrist, Alex and his parents are set on a race around the world to find the sacred Scrolls of Thebes, the Manacle's instruction manual...before they are found by Imhotep -- the mummified spirit of an evil Egyptian high priest also in search of the Scrolls and the Manacle. The fate of the world is endangered, and Alex must save it. The Mummy, set in the 1930's, combines round-the-world exotic locations with a contemporary attitude, and plenty of comedy and high-adventure. The series is produced by Universal Television."

* Cubix: "This show follows the adventures of 13-year-old Andy, a robot whiz, who through the power of friendship, brings to life a robot named Cubix that has been discarded as useless. When the town's wacky mad scientist, the evil Dr. K. begins to steal robots in search of a mysterious power source, Cubix and the gang prove to be the only force that can oppose him...and new heroes are born. The show is set in an amazing world called Bubble Town, where robots are everywhere and serve every function -- from hot dog vendors to gym teachers to best friends. From 4Kids Productions.

Kids' WB! has also made a production commitment for the following upcoming new animated series:

* Phantom Investigators: "This show features Prunella, Casey, Jericho and Nakisha - the coolest kid private investigators of paranormal phenomena in town. Ever since 'P.I.' Daemona Prune (a.k.a. Prunella Damone to kids at school) found her great-grandmother's ghost-detector in the attic, this 7th grade team of phantom-finders has been solving supernatural mysteries and catching creatures from the world beyond. They have managed to do all this with their own personal extraordinary abilities paired up with high-tech poltergeist-detecting gadgets, ghost-chasing vehicles...and a little help from a gang of cohorts that are not exactly human. From possessed skateboards to zombie pizza delivery guys ñ and anything else inexplicable, just call 555-PHANTOM...and this tight-knit crew of friends is on the case. Produced by Wholesome Products, Inc., and distributed by Sony Pictures Family Entertainment Group, the series brings a mix of animation styles including stop-motion animation and sophisticated puppetry to life."


At last weekend's MegaCon Mark Waid said his new title Crux will be "very different" than the other CrossGen books.

"Crux ended up being a lot more fun than I thought it was going to be," Waid said. "It's our first team book, which works for me because I like writing dialogue and I like writing snappy patter between characters. It ended up being a great deal of fun.

"It's not a funny book, but it's a little lighter than I thought it was going to be."

Waid described the concept of Crux, which is being drawn by Steve Epting.

"Atlantean civilization existed 400,000 years ago and then they sank. It wasn't part of the plan," Waid said. "Their job was to look out for humankind, not in any sort of bossy way, not in any evil, malevolent sort of way, but under a nurturing, parental way. Make sure we follow the right path, make we sure we live up to our potential in our accomplishments.

"They wake up 500,000 years later, and there's a problem exists in that one day, a little while ago, humans disappeared out of the blue. It's a big intergalactic legend. Nobody knows what happened to humanity.


"They wake up and not only do they screw up the first time by not doing what they set out to do - watch our for us - but now we're gone and they need to know where we are. And they need to know where we are before an alien race, who also seems very interested in the human race, finds the human race first.

"The characters are all different ages, all different power applications. They all have basically the same power, but they express it in different ways."

CrossGen's Barbara Kesel also noted that Crux marks the appearance of a second sigil.

Waid said he has a structure in mind for telling Crux stories.

"Ongoing continuity, like you would have with a night-time dramedy. Much like that sort of TV structure, a complete story in every issue," Waid said. "I promise you this. Because you're paying $2.95 for 22 pages, if I don't give you conflict and resolution, and I just give you another part of the story that's gonna be 12 parts long and hope you come back after $36 worth and enjoy it, I'm not doing a job.

"A complete story every issue. That's my promise to you."


Top Cow has released new promotional art for the Witchblade television series, set to begin in June on TNT.

Top Cow's David Wohl said he continues to be impressed with the scripts. "They're getting better and better," he said.

Meanwhile, TNT has launched a web site for the series, which can be found at: http://tnt.turner.com/originalseries/witchblade/.

The network also announced that the Witchblade pilot movie will be rebroadcast this summer. Dates were not announced.


X-Men #111 will arrive in stores on Wednesday from Marvel Comics. The issue is written by Scott Lobdell, with art by Leinil Yu and Mark Morales and a cover by Yu.

Here's how Marvel describes the issue:

"Why have Magneto's forces doubled overnight? What's happened to the Legacy Virus? And why is the world teetering on the edge of a genetic war? Find out as we examine human/mutant tensions through the lens of television reporter Trish Tilby."

X-Men #111 will be 32 pages and will cost $2.25.



Amazing Spider-Man #29 will arrive in stores on Wednesday from Marvel Comics. The issue is written by Howard Mackie, with art by Lee Weeks and Scott Hanna.

Here's how Marvel describes the issue:

"Writer Howard Mackie ends his run on the Web-Slinger by wrapping up storylines. Mary Jane. Ben Reilly. The baby. The stalker. These are the topics that readers refuse to let die-but which will be answered? The action continues in Peter Parker: Spider-Man #29 And Amazing Spider-Man 2001."

Amazing Spider-Man #29 will be 32 pages and will cost $2.25.



Incredible Hulk #25 will arrive in stores on Wednesday from Marvel Comics. The issue is written by Paul Jenkins, with art and cover by John Romita Jr.

Here's how Marvel describes the issue:

"It's a no-holds-barred, all-out battle between the Hulk and his hated dark twin, the Abomination. The green goliath has been aimed like a gun at the man-monster responsible for the death of his wife -- and General Thunderbolt Ross just pulled the trigger. Now two gamma-spawned titans clash in a war that will destroy a town, ravage a landscape-and climax in a masterpiece of revenge."

Incredible Hulk #25 will be 48 pages and will cost $2.99.



Spider-Man: Lifeline #3 will arrive in stores on Wednesday from Marvel Comics. The issue is written by Fabian Nicieza, with art by Steve Rude and Bob Wiacek and a painted cover by Rude.

Here's how Marvel describes the issue:

"Spider-Man is totally outmatched when the thuggish Hammerhead drinks the Eternity Formula and transforms into something well beyond human. And whose side with the lethal Lizard pick?"

Spider-Man: Lifeline #3 will be 32 pages and will cost $2.99.




  • David Goyer told The Continuum that the Blade sequel will begin filming on Saturday in Prague. "I am in the Blade II production office in Prague as I type this and the movie is going to be absolutely insane," Goyer said.

  • Fox will have the network broadcast premiere of the Spawn live-action movie on Thursday, March 22 at 8 p.m. (ET). The movie premiered on cable's TBS on Oct. 28, 2000.

  • Coming Monday: Marvel, DC and Dark Horse news - and much more!!!
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