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SAN DIEGO -- DC Comics announced several new projects and provided updates on current ones at its Vertigo panel Saturday at Comic-Con International.

Here's the rundown:

* Crossing Midnight is an ongoing series written by Mike Carey with art by Jim Fern and covers by J.H. Williams III, beginning in November.

"When Mike ended Lucifer, he wanted to do another book for us in that style," Vertigo editor Karen Berger said.

Taking place in modern-day Nagasaki, the series stars twins -- a boy and a girl -- born on each side of midnight. Divided by that mystical line in time, they each have one foot in our world and the other in a dark world of magic, supernatural monsters and horror.

* The Un-Men, written by John Whalen and illustrated by Mike Hawthorne, is an ongoing series slated for May. The book spins out of Swamp-Thing as The Un-Men, a cadre of grotesqueries created by the twisted experiments of Anton Arcane, are living in secret in the Nevada desert -- until investigator Simon Kilcrop, himself deemed a freak by society, discovers their existence.

"We really wanted to bring these guys back," said Berger, who described the book as a horror/mystery.

* Faker, a six-issue mini-series starting in December, is also written by Carey. Four college freshmen party hard one night, like there was no tomorrow... and the next morning they are five.

"This book is beyond creepy," editor Shelley Bond said. "Fans of Buffy will dig this, as well as Japanese horror fans."

* Sandman: Mystery Theater: Sleep of Reason is a five-issue mini-series by John Ney Rieber and Eric Nguyen that starts in December. A new, reluctant hero dons Wesley Dodds' gas mask and cloak. But this 21st century Sandman faces terrors in the war-torn cities of the Middle East that Wesley could never imagine.

Berger said the book will include flashbacks of Wesley and Diane Dodds.

Tim Bradstreet is providing coves.

* For the previously announced The Other Side -- The story follows two young soldiers in the U.S. and Viet Cong armies, as they struggle their way through basic training and into combat, hoping only to survive this nightmarish experience -- artist Cameron Stewart visited Viet Nam for a week.

"This is unquestionably one of the best stories I've ever read or worked on," Stewart said. "Going there infused the book with a sense of realisme that I don't think it would have had other wise."

The Other Side, a five-issue series written by Jason Aaron, starts in October.

* Among the artists contributing to Harvey Pekar's American Splendor series are Dean Haspiel, Richard Corben, Leonardo Manco, Chris Weston, Eddie Campbell, Hilary Barta, Ty Templeton, Greg Budgett and Gary Dumm and cover artist Glenn Fabry.

* Stray Bullets creator David Lapham does his first project for Vertigo with Silverfish, an original, black and white hardcover graphic novel slated for next year. What starts as a childish bid for her father's affections turns into suspense when a girl called Mia searches her new stepmother's purse, only to find a secret stash of money, a bloody knife and a mysterious address book.

"It's chockful of Laphamisms," Berger said.

* Cairo is by two new comics creators, writer G. Willow Wilson and artist M.K. Perker -- both journalists with ties to the Middle East.

The graphic novel interweaves the lives of a drug runner, a down-on-his luck journalist, an American expatriate, an Israeli soldier and more as they struggle for survival -- and to find a surprisingly valuable hooka that happens to be the home of a wrathful genie.

* Rick Veitch follows up Can't Get No with Army @ Love, an ongoing series slated for March.

In the near future, a National Guard unit from New Jersey is deployed to a never-ending series of battles in the Middle East. Made up of high school kids and 50-year-olds, the troops have adapted to the pressure cooker of conflict through hedonistic lifestyles -- behavior that the military actively encourages.

"It's really wacky," Berger said, "but like with all Rick's stuff, there's a message to it."

* Sentences: The Life and Times of M.F. Grimm is an autobiography/graphic novel that is illustrated by Ronald Wimberly slated for 2007.

Percy Carey -- aka rapper M.F. Grimm -- offers behind-the-scenes look at the world and history of the underground hip-hop scene.

* Denise Mina's first Hellblazer arc will be collected in a trade paperback in November.

* Steve Seagle said that "Going Down," the next arc of American Virgin, involves a trip to Australia to look for the Hatchet Man. Seagle said there will be a fetish pub, gay Olympics and a Christian speaking tour.

* Brian Wood is writing and drawing DMZ #12, one of two upcoming single-issue stories. "It's a rough guide to the city," Wood said. "There will be lots of notes and interviews. It's going to be very different."

* The Exterminators' Simon Oliver said he still can't come up with a "snappy four-line description" for the book." In October's #10, the Bug-Bee boys discover that nothing's more lethal than an army of insects willing to give their lives for a cause.

* Fables writer Bill Willingham said he is introducing Hansel, of Hansel and Gretel fame, to the book. "He's had some problems with witches as a kid and he don't think witches are a good thing," Willingham said.

Berger said the cover to Fables #54 is one of the most disturbing Vertigo has published.

Willingham also said he has no plans to end the series and will continue it as long as DC is interested in publishing it.

Matthew Sturges, Willingham's co-writer on the new Jack of Fables title, said the book will introduce a lot of new fables. "Including American fables, who have been noticeably absent."

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