DC reveals at SDCC 2023 that every hero is about to turn into an animal

DC Comics unveiled the company’s next extravagant crossover at San Diego Comic-Con this weekend: beast world – in which millions of people are transformed into rampaging anthropomorphic animals, including, of course, many heroes and villains.

The whole thing seems to have roots in the Teen Titans’ most important shapeshifter, Beast Boy, and also some mad science, and also him transforming into a giant space starfish in order to battle another giant space starfish and losing his mind in the process, but… Am I a little cautiously optimistic about that?

For one thing, the book comes from Tom Taylor (with art from Ivan Reis and potentially the likes of Nicola Scott and Bruno Redondo), who is simply king at taking a wild – in this case, literal – premise and turning it into hyper-compelling superhero drama. On the other hand, it would be quite simply hypocritical of me to have been enormously publicized for Jurassic Leaguethe story where the Justice League are all anthropomorphic dinosaurs, and doesn’t give essentially the same concept but takes place in the modern DCU.

And for a third… look. Sometimes it’s good when the crossover event isn’t about a universe-ending threat, or the multiverse collapsing, or every hero trapped in their worst nightmare. Maybe it will be good when the crossover event is all about everyone fighting like the Street Sharks meet zoo. Titans: World of Beasts starts in November.

What else is going on with our favorite comics? We will tell you. Welcome to Monday Funnies, which is usually Polygon’s weekly list of books our comics editor enjoyed over the past week. But comic book creators and publishers usually plan for a fairly quiet fictional SDCC week, knowing that they’ll all be busy during the biggest real-life industry event of the year. So this week, we’ll be highlighting the most interesting real-life comic book events. (And if you missed the last edition, read this.)

The Amazons attack this fall

Queen Nubia of the Amazons wields a spear on the cover of Nubia and the Amazons #1 (2021).

Image: Alitha Martinez, Laura Martin/DC Comics

Comic books (New Shazam Champion) and TV (She-Ra, My Adventures with Superman) writer Josie Campbell takes on the Amazons in a new limited series, Attack of the Amazons. The series will not be directly linked to the new film by Tom King and Daniel Sampere wonder woman book, but seems to derive from the same plot development: the United States banning the citizens of Themysciran from its shores. It will feature Queen Nubia of the Amazons, Mary Marvel (whose powers now derive from the Amazons’ goddesses), and other non-Wonder Woman Amazons.

The first issue hits shelves on October 24.

Chip Zdarsky returns (briefly) to Howard the Duck

Howard the Duck scans the Super Classifieds with skepticism as various figures (Spider-Man, a guy with four arms, a woman in a skirt) pass behind him.

Image: Joe Quinones/Marvel Comics

Of course, Dan Slott is returning for a new series on Superior Spider-Man, Doc Ock’s superhero identity, and there will be a Spider-Man crossover called “Gang War.” But we are here for the big Marvel News: Howard the Duck’s Birthday.

Chip Zdarsky, who wrote the character’s last notable and fan-favorite series, will return to the character for a new howard the duck #1, a one-shot celebrating its 50th anniversary. Talent on the book will include Zdarsky Howard collaborator Joe Quinones, as well as the likes of Daniel Kibblesmith, Annie Wu and Ed McGuinness. It will hit shelves in November.

The new Punisher is… just… a guy

Former SHIELD agent Joe Garrison wields two laser guns as the new Punisher in Marvel Comics promotional art.

Image: Rod Reis/Marvel Comics

After Marvel teased a new Punisher with a question mark graphic on his face, as if we recognize him, fans went into a natural frenzy of speculation. The main contenders to have short hair and two laser guns included Bishop and Cable of the X-Men, but instead Marvel revealed that the new guy in the Punisher outfit is…

An original character. Like, he’s just a guy.

Eisner Highlights

Kevin Conroy describes how he imagined feeling disoriented and lost, with no identity, while getting inside Bruce Wayne's head to invent his voice.

Image: Kevin Conroy, J. Bone/DC Comics

Often overshadowed by news from major movie studios, San Diego Comic-Con is also home to the American comics industry’s closest thing to the Oscars: the Eisner Awards. And some of Polygon’s favorite picks won big. night eaters won Best Chart Album, Ducks: two years in the oil sands received the award for best graphics memory, Do a Powerbomb got Best Teen Post and Best Short Story went to “Finding Batman” by artist J. Bone and the late Kevin Conroy.

Andy Samberg makes a comic where a guy kills neo-nazis with bowling balls

variant cover for The Holy Roller #1 (2023)

Image: Mike Hawthorne/Image Comics

Andy Samberg (yes, actor-comedian) teams up with Joe Trohman (yes, of Fall Out Boy), Rick Remender (yes, comic book writer) and Roland Boschi (yes, comic book writer) for The Holy Scroll. Well, I’ll let the Image Comics press release say it:

To care for his ailing father, pro-bowler Levi Coen is forced to quit his dream job and return to his hometown, which he soon discovers has been overrun by neo-Nazis! With only his collection of bowling balls to defend himself with, Levi becomes THE HOLY ROLLER!

Issue 1 of what looks to be a fun and gory adventure will be released on November 22.

TMNT: Last Ronin II Introduces a New Generation of Modified Teen Martial Arts Testudines

Ninja Turtle characters jump through the air in a dark city on the cover of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin II — ReEvolution #1.

Image: IDW Edition

Following the resounding success of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin – a distant tale of the last living turtle brother co-written by TMNT creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird – IDW continues the series with a new generation of turtles for the new future. Here is the official synopsis:

Guided by Casey Marie Jones, the formidable and strategic daughter of April O’Neil and the late Casey Jones, the next generation of Ninja Turtles – Yi, Uno, Odyn and Moja – will face the ultimate enemy! Will the young heroes be able to adapt to the pressure of a city at war?

Eastman will return to write the series, with Last Ronin co-writer Tom Waltz and new-to-series artist Ben Bishop. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin II—Re-Evolution #1 (phew, that’s a mouthful) will hit stores in December.

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