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FRIDAY, APRIL 14, 2006

COMING SATURDAY

The Simpsons news, Smallville news -- and much more!!!

SUPERMAN MOVIES ON CINEMAX

Cinemax is offering viewers a perfect tune-up for the upcoming Superman Returns movie by showing the first two Christopher Reeve movies back-to-back in June, The Continuum has learned.

The pay cable network has scheduled Superman and Superman II to air on Thursday, June 29, the day before Superman Returns is set to open in theaters. Superman will air at 7:30 p.m. (ET), followed by Superman II.

Superman Returns director Bryan Singer has said that the new film puts the first two Superman movies in a "vague history."

Both films star Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder and Gene Hackman.

Superman will also air on Cinemax on June 9 at 11:30 a.m. Superman II will also air on Tuesday, June 6 at 5 a.m.

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TOP COW ROUNDUP

Top Cow Productions will feature five covers for Witchblade #100 in July.

The covers will include art by Marc Silvestri, Michael Turner, Mike Choi, Joseph Michael Linsner and Gonzo, the studio behind the Japanese Witchblade anime series.

Click on the thumbnails for larger images and look for more on Witchblade #100 soon here in The Continuum.

In other Top Cow news:

* Top Cow will publish a second mini-series featuring The Freshmen, created by Hugh Sterbakov and Seth Green. An official announcement, including the artist for the mini-series, will be made late next week.

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NEW FAMILY GUY EPISODE

Fox has released a promotional image from "You May Now Kiss The...Uh...Guy Who Receives" episode of Family Guy, scheduled to air on Sunday, April 30 at 9 p.m. (ET/PT).

Here's how Fox describes the episode:

"While visiting the Griffins, Brian's gay cousin Jasper announces he's engaged to his partner and wants to be married in their home. But when Mayor West bans gay marriage in Quahog to cover up an unrelated scandal, Brian becomes a crazed activist and resorts to hostile ways to change the mayor's decision. Meanwhile, Lois questions her view toward gay marriage and Chris joins the extremist 'Young Republicans' group to win a girl's heart."

Look for appearances in the show by Superman, the Hulk and Han Solo. Guest voices include Chad Morgan and Wanda Sykes.

Click on the thumbnail for a larger image.

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STORM'S WEDDING DRESS

Marvel Comics has unveiled Storm's dress for her upcoming wedding to the Black Panther in Julyıs Black Panther #18.

The design of the dress for the upcoming Black Panther/Storm wedding was created by Shawn Dudley, the Emmy Award-winning costume designer for the CBS soap opera Guiding Light.

"I was a little shocked when I first saw the 'comic book' version of our dress because I'm a control freak," Dudley said. "I had to really wrap my head around the 'updates' and changes to our original rendering. But it was all good and I really thought the evolution from original research to our classic rendering than on to the final version was a cool process."

Executive producer of Guiding Light, Ellen Wheeler, said she was happy to see the crossover between soaps and comics. "Our soap world and the comics world are a great fit, but I'm especially thrilled that our wonderful costume design team has had this opportunity to show their talents, that we see every day here, in a new and cool way," she said.

Click on the thumbnails above for larger images of the dress' design, art from Black Panther #18 and a variant cvoer by Michael Turner.



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ASPEN COMICS FOR JULY

Aspen Comics has provided The Continuum with its solicitations for July.

For a rundown, CLICK HERE.

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FIRST LOOKS

For covers and five-page previews of upcoming titles, CLICK HERE.

Titles include G.I. Joe vs. Transformers: The Art of War #2 from Devil's Due Publishing and Helios: In With The New #3 from Dakuwaka Productions.

Look for more First Looks this weekend here in The Continuum.

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MARCH SALES FIGURES

Marvel Comics again topped the sales charts for March, according to figures released by Diamond on Friday.

Marvel had 42.83 percent of the market share to 33.60 percent for DC Comics. Marvel had 38.12 percent of the dollar share to 32.32 percent for DC.

The top 10 books for the month were Infinite Crisis #5, New Avengers #17, All Star Superman #3, New Avengers: Illuminati, Superman/Batman #24, Ultimates 2 #10, Amazing Spider-Man #530, Green Lantern #10, Uncanny X-Men #470 and Infinite Crisis Secret Files.

For a complete rundown, CLICK HERE.

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BIG BANG COMICS

Formerly publishing through Image Comics, Big Bang Comics has announced its self-publishing launch with Big Bang Presents #1.

The debut issue features tributes to Will Eisner and Jack Cole. Protoplasman is a combination of all eras of Cole's work, from the Claw to Plastic Man through his pre-code horror and crime stories.

"It's kind of a hard-boiled humorous action series," said Gary Carlson, writer and Big Bang editor. "This first story is very much an homage to Cole's Plastic Man. Artist Mort Todd has done a wonderful job! Protoplasman will be a regular visitor in the pages of Big Bang Presents."

Big Bang's flagship character the Knight Watchman gets the Will Eisner treatment in "The Camera of Doom," also written by Carlson, who considers it one of the best Big Bang comics.

³From day one I've wanted to mix and match the great artists' styles with different iconic characters," he said. "I still want to see a Bob Kane Ultiman story, a Simon and Kirby Knight Watchman. This story is our guess as to what a Will Eisner Batman story might have been like. Jeff Austin did a wonderful job translating my layouts into finished art."

Another character scheduled to make her Big Bang debut in BB Presents #1 is Miss Firecracker, with art by Mike Worley in the Bill Ward tradition.

The first issue will be 32 black-and-white pages and will cost $2.95. Big Bang hopes to go to a full-color format with the third issue.



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* Above are images of Diamond Select's busts based on X-Men: The Last Stand. Click on the thumbnails for larger images.

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COMICS CONTINUUM BACK ISSUES

In case you missed The Continuum's recent coverage, here are some links. Click on the date to get the day's full report.

* Sunday, April 9: Justice League Unlimited, Heroes for Hire, V for Vendetta and Smallville.

* Saturday, April 8: Batman movies on HBO, Heroic Publishing for July and First Looks.

* Friday, April 7: Superman Returns, Civil War press conference, Justice League Unlimited, Smallville, Boom! Studios for July and Claypool Comics for July.

* Thursday, April 6: Fantastic Four sequel, X-Men: The Last Stand, Smallville and The Batman.

* Wednesday, April 5: Marvel First Looks, DC First Looks, X-Men: The Last Stand, G.I. Joe: Declassified and Astonishing X-Men.

* Tuesday, April 4: Fantastic Four animated series, X-Men: The Last Stand, Superman Returns, Diamond Select Toys, Ultimate Fantastic Four and First Looks.

* Monday, April 3: McFarlane Productions' projects, Amazing Spider-Man, X-Men: The Last Stand, Smallville and IDW First Looks.

* Sunday, April 2: Smallville, V for Vendetta and First Looks.

* Saturday, April 1: Ultimate Avengers and First Looks.

* Friday, March 31: 300 Video Journal, Superman Returns, Annihilation: Ronan, Fantastic Four and Red Sonja.

* Thursday, March 30: Krypto the Superdog, Ms. Marvel, Aquaman TV pilot, First Looks and Cyberforce.

* Wednesday, March 29: Teen Titans, Marvel First Looks, DC First Looks, Marvel/Panini deal and Devil's Due.

* Tuesday, March 28: X-Men: The Last Stand, Fantastic Four sells out, Justice League Unlimited and Marvel First Looks.

* Monday, March 27: IDW Publishing for July, Blade: The Series, Image Comics First Looks, Rex Mundi to Dark Horse and Nova.

* Sunday, March 26: V for Vendetta, Superman/Batman, Smallville and First Looks.

* Saturday, March 25: Ultimate Avengers, First Looks, E-Man Returns and Trailer Park of Terror.

* Friday, March 24: The Simpsons go live-action, Tommy Lee Edwards on Bulletpoints, First Looks and Amazing Spider-Man variant.

* Thursday, March 23: X-Men: The Official Game, Aspen Comics For June, The Batman and Blade: The Series.

* Wednesday, March 22: Marvel First Looks, DC First Looks and Image First Looks.

* Tuesday, March 21: DB Pro for June, Gen13's Talent Caldwell, Legion of Super Heroes animation, Witchblade animated and Marvel First Looks.

* Monday, March 20: From Wizard World L.A.: Blade, Ultimate Avengers, Ultimate Universe and Civil War panels.

* Sunday, March 19: V for Vendetta tops box office and, from Wizard World L.A.: DC Universe, WildStorm/Vertigo/CMX and X-Men panels.

* Saturday, March 18: From Wizard World L.A.: Hellboy's Doug Jones, Superman Returns, DC Comics panel, Marvel's Cup 'O Joe panel and Mondo Marvel panel.

* Friday, March 17: February sales, Marvel animation roundup, V for Vendetta, Family Guy and Iron Man press conference.




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