8:00am PT by Graeme McMillan
'DC Comics Bombshells' Expands With Busts, Coffee Table Book and Annual Issue (Exclusive)
Three years after its introduction, DC Entertainment's DC Comics Bombshells line continues to go from strength to strength.
Following the success of the series, of collectible statues and companion comic book re-imaginings of the heroines of its superhero universe as the most powerful players in an alternate World War II setting, The Hollywood Reporter can reveal that DC will expand the brand further this year with the comic book series' first coffee-table book. The annual book will collect the designs behind the Bombshells, an all-new new line of collectible busts and more.
Bombshells debuted in 2013 with four statues inspired by the retro artwork of illustrator Ant Lucia (who continues to work on covers and illustrations for the line) and reimagining of Wonder Woman, Poison Ivy, Stargirl and Harley Quinn in a style that mixes classic mid-century pin-up and modern rockabilly influences. In January 2017, that collectible line will continue with the addition of a new statue designed by Lucia, bringing Suicide Squad's Katana into the mythos.
Sculpted by Jack Matthews, the 9" figure will retail for $130.
Three months earlier, DC Collectibles will expand the Bombshells line with the release of the first Bombshells busts, as Wonder Woman, Supergirl and Mera launch a new ongoing product line. Designed by Supergirl artist Emanuela Lupacchino, each of the three busts — which stand 7" tall and will retail at $70.00 — are again sculpted by Jack Matthews.
October also sees the release of The Art of DC Comics Bombshells, a hardcover collection of design work by Lucia, Lupacchino and other artists including Des Taylor and Terry & Rachel Dodson, much of which will never have been publicly seen before the book's publication. Running 200 pages, the hardcover will be available Oct. 26 for $39.99.
If October seems a little too far away, take comfort in the fact that August will bring a double dose of Bombshells comic book action, with the 16th issue of the regular series — see the cover by Lucia at the top of the page — joined by the first DC Comics Bombshells Annual, in which writer Marguerite Bennett and artist Elsa Charretier reveal the hidden history of "The Bloody Batgirl," the Hallowe'en Horror of the first Great War. Terry and Rachel Dodson's cover for the issue, which will be available in comic book stores Aug. 31, looks like this:
Bennett, whose work on such series as Angela, Queen of Hel and InSexts has gained her a significant fan following, told THR that she believes the appeal of the Bombshells comic book comes from the way in which it empowers its heroes.
"The Bombshells comic is set in an alternate World War II era where the women come first — where no heroine is derivative of a male counterpart — and I think that's why the characters and stories have really resonated with fans," she explained. "Each heroine has her own senses and her own limits. No two will have the same feelings towards the nature of power, beauty, modesty, self-actualization, sensuality, etc. They don't have to be role models, love interests or archetypes. They get to be real, complete with flaws and failings and joys of their own."
That's a sentiment echoed by Lucia, who said, "One of the main goals for the Bombshells statues has always been to portray the characters in power positions. Bombshells are meant to be beautiful, daring, proud, self-assured and physically strong icons, and that’s why I think fans connect so much with these designs."
Unusually for a superhero property, Lucia added, "What I've found with the artwork is that there are as many women fans as there are men. In some cases, I'd say there are more based on the fans I meet."
Bennett credits the success of the line as a whole to its audience. "Their enthusiasm, their voices, their cosplay and their call for Ant Lucia's gorgeous designs brought this world to life," she argues. "They've created this world as much as we have. I'm floored when I think about how much Bombshells has exploded in pop culture and how its momentum continues to grow. I love seeing Bombshells designs appear in everything from pins and trading cards, and now to its own clothing line. I am constantly grateful and humbled to see the power and glamour of the line grow thanks to the passionate fans."