Escapists #2 On Sale

The Escapists #2 hit stores today, featuring the second part in the tale of Max Roth and Case Weaver!

“This is the issue where Jason Shawn Alexander and I jump on board as artists, masterfully coloured by Matt Hollingsworth and Dave Stewart,” artist Steve Rolston e-mailed fans this morning. “Esteemed writer Brian K. Vaughan has really woven a beautiful story here that’s clever & original on its own but also faithful to the vibe of a great novel.”

Vaughan had his own thoughts. “If you can find a new book with a better team than that, you… I don’t know, live in some kind of alternate reality,” Vaughan posted on his Web site’s forum. “I LOVE this issue, so I hope you guys give it a read.”

The story had been set to appear in Michael Chabon Presents: The Amazing Adventures of the Escapist #9 before Dark Horse Comics canceled the series in January.

In issue #2, Roth and Weaver complete their first issue of the new Escapist comic. The solicitation notes that “their promotional plans include a risky publicity stunt that puts Denny in an old Escapist costume… and in harm’s way!”

And if perhaps that’s not enough for you, take a look at the preview for issue #4, due in stores October 11.

Escapists #2 Solicited

The solicitation for The Escapists #2 has hit the net.

The Escapists #2 Writer: Brian K. Vaughan, Gerard Jones
Artist: Steve Rolston, Jason Alexander
Cover Artist: James Jean

Multiple Eisner Award-winning and Wizard Top Ten writer Brian K. Vaughan (Y: The Last Man; Ex Machina; Runaways) teams with acclaimed artists Steve Rolston (Queen & Country, MEK) and Jason Alexander (Damn Nation, Gotham Central) for the second installment of our first Escapist mini-series! Max Roth and Case Weaver have finished the very first issue of their re-launch comic, featuring a revamped Luna Moth, and their promotional plans include a risky publicity stunt that puts Denny in an old Escapist costume . . . and in harm’s way!

Also in this issue is a never-before-seen chapter from Men of Tomorrow, Gerard Jones’s wildly acclaimed book on the history of comics, in which he unearths some scandalous press on the Master of Elusion!

With cover art by the sensational James Jean, two-time winner of the Eisner Award for Best Cover Artist!

Publication Date: Aug 09, 2006
Format: Full color, 32 pages
Price: $2.99

Escapist Canceled; Mini-Series Forthcoming

Dark Horse has pulled the plug on Michael Chabon Presents: The Amazing Adventures of the Escapist, making November’s issue #8 the last in the series, the anthology’s main artist revealed today.

Steve Rolston, in a LiveJournal posting and an e-mail to his fans, announced the series would be relaunched “in a series of more affordable packages,” including a six-issue mini-series, The Escapists, due in stores in July.

“While this does mean you’ll have to wait until the summer, it also means you won’t have to wait as long between issues and the price tag will be much more affordable for those who weren’t keen on the anthology format,” Rolston said.

Rolston’s announcement indicates The Amazing Adventures of the Escapist #9, due in stores this Wednesday, will not hit shelves after all. No word on what will happen to the stories completed for that book.

Brian K. Vaughan, writer for The Escapists, said in a forum posting that the decision was made “because Dark Horse felt that our story deserved a wider audience, and Mr. Chabon agreed that a relaunched monthly series (with a significantly more affordable cover price) would help us reach exactly that.”

“It’s a drag that people will have to wait a few more months to see Steve Rolston and Jason Alexander’s stuff, but I honestly think this might be the best book I’ve ever been a part of, so I’m grateful that DH is working hard to get it into many more hands,” Vaughan said.

Michael Chabon, in an e-mail, said he was “just glad and grateful to Dark Horse that they’re sticking with it at all and impressed that they’re planning to honor all their outstanding commitments to the writers and artists who had already been hired to do work for the quarterly.”

He added he was happy more readers would get to see Vaughan’s story line, saying “it’s just such great stuff.”

Rolston indicated the first two issues of The Escapists would feature the first part of the story arc already seen in the current anthology. Issue #1 will feature Philip Bond’s art, and issue #2, due in August, will feature Rolston.

Chabon had indicated almost a month ago that changes were in the works, but had said at the time they would probably be “nothing as drastic as outright cancellation.” The Escapist had suffered poor sales since its inception, selling only 4,594 copies of issue #8, less than half of its first issue in February 2004.

Holiday Break Wrap-Up

During the past three weeks, this site has been on an unannounced break while its operator took a much-needed vacation. Consequently, a lot of news did not get covered. Here’s just a few of the more juicy tid-bits:

Following a report on this site about a drop in sales for The Amazing Adventures of the Escapist, Michael Chabon announced that “changes, as yet unspecified but probably nothing as drastic as outright cancellation, are in the works.””One cannot expect even the infinitely patient and forebearing people at Dark Horse Comics to carry this weak sister indefinitely, at least not without making some changes,” he said over at his site on Dec. 21.

The Vancouver Courier ran an article about Escapist artist Steve Rolston on Jan. 1 and asked him a little about his new gig.”I tend to be a little wary of comics about making comics,” Rolston told the paper, “but this one is done so well and it’s so brilliant that I love it. And the whole comic within a comic book thing, it’s more than that.”

Rolston also showed the paper images of Roth.

“He is my kind of character,” Rolston said. “He’s a guy who loves comics and he’s not the most social butterfly, so I think most comic book creators can relate.”

The New York Times published new evidence on Jan. 9 that could prove San Francisco author JT LeRoy, who is said to be friends with Chabon and Ayelet Waldman, is a 40-year-old, middle-class woman instead of a former male hooker.Neither Chabon or Waldman have publicly reacted yet. But Dave Eggers told the San Francisco Chronicle that if the report was correct, “then I was fooled by the JT LeRoy persona as much as anyone.”

“I actually edited a story, ‘Harold’s End,’ by LeRoy, and spent hours on the phone — with someone — going through a typical line-edit,” Eggers said.

The Sacramento Bee published a short interview with Waldman about her newest novel, Love and Other Impossible Pursuits.

Waldman’s newest Salon column hit the net this week. In it, she discusses her mother-in-law, aka Chabon’s mom.”My mother-in-law’s style is much more subtle than my own,” she writes. “Because of her natural reserve she would never have mentioned our rivalry, and it’s even possible that she didn’t feel it. Or at least wouldn’t acknowledge the feeling. But it was there, lurking under the surface of even our most positive of interactions.”