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October 29, 2008
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Yes, indeedy, after an unfortunate series of home-repair-related delays, the fourth volume of EMPOWERED (my "sexy superhero comedy" published by Dark Horse Comics) has finally hit the shelves! Oh, happy day! (Though it might not be available at certain bookstore chains for another week or so...)

EMPOWERED 4 front + back cover by AdamWarren

The delay in EMP 4 shipping (from its original release date in September) might've thrown off some people... Throughout the "comics blogosphere", I've noticed considerably fewer mentions of its release than with previous volumes, even from sites that positively reviewed said earlier volumes. Not sure if that's indicative of any wider trends within the comics market, but still... Feel free to put the "word on the street," figurative Huggy Bears, if'n you know of any EMPOWERED readers unaware of the current book's release.

EMPOWERED 4 title page by AdamWarren

Anyhoo, Vol. 4's a slight change of pace for EMPOWERED, in that the individual stories are rather more tightly interwoven than previous volumes, with most of the narrative threads getting resolved (or readdressed, at least) in the 50-page epic that finishes off the book... Wheee!

EMPOWERED 4's Mo' Symbolism by AdamWarren

Well, I'm now stumbling on to EMPOWERED vol. 5, which is slated for a June 2009 release. That's a longer gap than with previous volumes, but given how I wound up blowing past EMP 4's deadline (due to Augean Stables-like home repair issues, I hasten to add), not entirely surprising. A slender possibility exists that I might try to bridge this yawning gap with an EMPOWERED one-shot in traditional comics format, but that'll depend on the status of some other jobs I'm angling to land. (In fact, a writing-only pitch of mine is due to go before an Big Company EiC tomorrow... Fingers: crossed, needless to say.) In the meantime, you can see the cover rough for EMPOWERED vol. 5 here:

EMPOWERED 5 cover rough by AdamWarren

Anyhoo, just thought I'd post a journal as a place wherein you could comment on EMPOWERED vol. 4, if'n you felt like doing so. Please try to avoid waxing TOO spoiler-iffic on certain (later) plot elements, given that many folks here won't be picking up the book for a while yet...

EMPOWERED 4's Symbolism by AdamWarren    

Also: Just thought I'd link to intercept-789's photo montage of some damn fine EMPOWERED cosplay:  

Empowered Montage by intercept-789

In fact, I might well rip off one element from this excellent bit of cosplay for the comic itself: As Emp has a part-time job effectively cosplaying as herself (last referenced back in vol. 1, alas), I like the idea of her "faux Emp suit" including high heels, much to our heroine's chagrin...

EMPOWERED 4's Hospitality by AdamWarren

And now, my usual attempts at sales floggery... Here's the solicitation copy for EMPOWERED vol. 4, now with an extra paragraph:

Costumed crimefighter “Empowered” is briefly overjoyed to find herself in the running for one of the superhero community’s annual Caped Justice Awards (or “Capeys” )—only to discover that her nomination was merely a cruel joke by her obnoxious superpeers. But when the masked masses face a cataclysmic reckoning on the night of the awards presentation, can our perpetually struggling heroine overcome her resentment and save the day? And can she cope with the further problems posed by crossdressing vigilantes, dying wishes from preteen wannabe supervillains, telepathic “booty calls,” a deeply depressed ninja, bedroom conflicts with her boyfriend, and even... Hummer® fu?

You can order EMP 4 online at Dark Horse's retail website at: www.tfaw.com/Graphic-Novels/Pr… or at Amazon.com: www.amazon.com/Empowered-4-Ada…

Note that both sites have links for ordering previous EMPOWERED volumes, as well; or, you can quite possibly find these volumes on the shelves of of your friendly neighborhood comics retailer or bookstore, though not at MY local Barnes & Noble, annoyingly enough... And if they don't carry the books, just ask said retailer to order 'em for you; believe me, they'd be happy to take your money. I'm happy to report that all three of the previous volumes should be in stock and available, as I just received a copy of the fourth(!) printing of the temporarily out-of-stock EMPOWERED vol. 1... Wheee!

EMPOWERED 4's binge-y Spooky by AdamWarren

UPDATE #1: Whilst patrolling for reviews, I stumbled upon the following bit of awesomeness on YouTube: A ROCK BAND 2 custom-character video featuring characters from EMPOWERED, as expertly pieced together by DA's own ARNie00! And lo,  the song choice is especially appropriate...

Take a look fer yerself at www.youtube.com/watch?v=mSn7Rv…

UPDATE #2: Big Company pitch: rejected! Not a huge surprise, really (said pitch didn't star a Major Character, alas), but still a bit disappointing.
  • Mood: Optimism
  • Listening to: T&R on WBCN
  • Reading: SOLANIN, MONSTER vol. 17
  • Watching: GENSHIKEN 2, DIRTY JOBS
  • Playing: TOMB RAIDER ANNIVERSARY
  • Eating: Wasabi chips
  • Drinking: Long Trail Belgian White Ale
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:iconscorpio3002:
Scorpio3002 Featured By Owner May 30, 2009
I actually hadn't realized that Sistah Spooky was black before I saw this volume's cover. Frankly, other than the name, I'm not sure how I was supposed to know.

Amazing book, tho. The love that I feel towards Ms. Powers is unlike any other fictional character I have ever encountered.
Reply
:iconjessasketch:
jessasketch Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2009
Adam-
Do you have any plans to sell some of the pages from your Empowered novels? Your pencil work is just incredible to look at published, I'd love the chance to own an original piece by you.
Reply
:iconmiladymorigane:
Miladymorigane Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I'm reading Empowered at the moment, i'm totally fan of the characters ! So sexy and funny !
Very great pencils and dynamic panels, i'm in love ! :D
Reply
:iconbrollymmxdc:
brollyMMXDC Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2009
Out of curiosity, what do you do with your "extra/scrapped" pages? Do you have a Uncut edition planned or Omnibus you're building towards? Or does it share the same fate as the cut tape from Mickey Rourkes Wild Orchid, being passed around at parties for entertainment?
Reply
:iconnewphx:
newphx Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2009
Hey Adam, just discovered Empowered and looking forward to learning more about your series! Looks fun!
Reply
:iconfrankiejetson:
FrankieJetson Featured By Owner Dec 20, 2008
Finally got 4 through the post today and devoured it in one reading so I just had to leave a note. Oh my, one of the best yet I daresay, thank you for the continually awesome work you do and good luck with #5, I look forward to it. Also, uh, more of Mr. Maidman I hope ... must...fanart... :-D~
Reply
:iconminigendo:
MiniGendo Featured By Owner Dec 19, 2008
Greetings,

I had the chance to read volume 4 today, and I wanted to say that I really enjoyed it. The captive demon's dialogue was great. The reveal at the end was telegraphed a bit, but that's my only complaint. Please keep up the good work, good sir.
Reply
:icondamions:
DamionS Featured By Owner Dec 3, 2008  Professional Filmographer
I wanna get #4 but I'm having money problems. Then again who isn't?
Reply
:iconpriceman:
Priceman Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2008  Student General Artist
Just got my copy from Amazon today! Can't wait to dig in! Keep up the excellent work!
Reply
:iconcatgoyle:
Catgoyle Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2008
Tomorrow I can pick my copy of Emp #4 up after work...! I'm so excited, I can't wait! (grins)
Reply
:iconsigojwana:
Sigojwana Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2008
Maidman intrigues me because here we've got a guy who seems as masculine as any guy can be except he dresses in women's clothing. Add thefact that he follows a code of honour which suggests he's moral and moral and crossdressing just don't seem like they should be in the same sentence.

I keep imagining that he isn't really a crossdresser he's simply a guy who's uncovered supervillains deep seated fear of maids or guys in women's clothing
Reply
:iconsyarlson:
SYarlson Featured By Owner Nov 20, 2008
I hope you drop Willy Pete into the ocean. Or a glacier. Sister Spooky has already shown the ability to teleport people, although she was right next to Emp when she did it, and went along. Not ideal for dealing with old W.P. Or there's always that Wet Blanket loser. Oh, and tie up/leave helpless awhile some other characters other than Emp herself. The Christmas one with Thugboy as a reindeer was hilarious, and not even offensive to a homomphobe like myself.
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:iconjohnslaughter:
JohnSlaughter Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Re: Cosplay... She's on DA.

~RikiakaRiddle
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:iconzefram:
Zefram Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Probably my favorite volume so far for more reasons than I can't list in the time I can comment without getting caught at work (needless to say, I can sympathize with the websurfing ninja in 3). Seeing the long-term effects of Ninjette's experience just shines a huge spotlight on the comparitive lack of long-term characterization in more mainstream books. Very rarely do such events have long-term impact on the psyche's of said superheroes, and are rarely even alluded to unless they need filler between fight scenes. Ever since I read my first Dirty Pair GN, I recognized you have a very unappreciated (at least in comics) ability to make your readers care about the characters. You give them truly genuine insecurities and flaws that sound like they grew from a lifetime of experience and hardship, rather than being pitched in a writing conference. They have memories and experiences that don't just pop up randomly in flashbacks to give the illusion of depth, but actually influence them on a day to day, if not moment to moment basis.

You also managed to create something truly frightening in Willy Pete. In a sea of self-referential (though still well-characterized) "villains", you have a true monster, a truly evil thing that would strike even the most experienced "mainstream" hero speechless, lurking, hanging over the lives of our happy-go-lucky characters like a Sword of Damocles, just waiting to fall. There's no witty banter with Willy Pete (use that witticism if thou will, I'd be honored). I don't know what you're planning, but I only hope Emp's fears of your "mean streak" expressed in vol 3 (she forgot to mention your Titans book, which didn't exactly end on a happy note either) don't come to pass (at least for a while), as books and characters of such consistantly good quality are a truly rare gem, and I'd hate to see it come to a premature end, though a masochistic part of me almost can't bare the suspense and would like to see its resolution.

I trust that whatever you do, it will at least be memorable, and like the Caged Doomstrider, will wait patiently, using his eloquent (if slightly misspelled) powers of suggestion.
Reply
:iconsyarlson:
SYarlson Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2008
I really enjoy Empowered, and I mean I am getting into the stroy and appreciate the jokes, not just the steaminess. However, am displeased at the homosexual references, notably the Maidman (nice outfit, why not on a woman) and Elyssa's desire to...er..let's pretend I won't say it because it would be a spoiler, okay ? But I don't enjoy being 3-stooged, myself. And, if you're looking for a way to defeat Willy Pete, and I'm allowing for the possibility that you've painted yourself into a corner here, I can give you two easy methods. Thanks, Mr. Warren.
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:iconadamwarren:
AdamWarren Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2008  Professional General Artist
Yer welcome... and re: ol' Willy Pete, I haven't necessarily painted myself into a corner quite yet... Be aware, though, that ol' WP is a li'l bit trickier (or, possibly, a LOT trickier) than he might appear, as future volumes will reveal.
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:iconsyarlson:
SYarlson Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2009
I was just re-reading the series from the beginning, and when our bondage-prone heroine gets the alien power-draining belt, there are two or perhaps even three of them. One around her torso and arms, one around her legs, and one around her ankles. If so, it means she can leave the Demonwolf caged, and (wait for it) FIRST , we freeze ol' Willy Pete with another crioray, so he doesn't melt the belt, then slap the spare belt onto him. pass that along to Thugboy, will you ?
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:iconsilverbolt2012:
silverbolt2012 Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2008
I really enjoyed #4!

I picked it up in Forbidden Planet in London last night, and spent pretty much the whole train journey home reading it. Some great art and some brilliant twists and turns.
Reply
:iconfeist:
Feist Featured By Owner Nov 12, 2008
Volume 4 was fantastic. I read it in the parking lot of the comic shop and was entirely blown away. I'm re-reading it now, and I can't recommend it highly enough to my friends. Can't wait for volume 5.
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:iconc-puff:
C-Puff Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2008  Professional Filmographer
I've just bought my copy today! I'm so excited since I read the first 3 in Canada and was afraid that when I went back home I wouldn't be able to find them in my Country but I did!
So here's a shout out From South Africa where even we read Empowered! :wave:
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:iconhughyeman:
HughYeman Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2008
Since I finished reading #4 last week I've continued to flip through and re-read it in patches. Every bit of it is brilliant. I feel like this is your best effort to date: the whole story has the sense of a solid, tight arc. Thanks for all the enjoyment you've given me, and I wish you increasing success.

Oh, congratulations also on creating the scariest supervill ever. Willy Pete makes my bits shrivel up a little.
Reply
:icongillyperkygoth:
GillyPerkyGoth Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2008  Professional Artist
Yay for teh Kick-assery in volume 4!!! Can't wait for #5 to come^^
Reply
:iconadamwarren:
AdamWarren Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2008  Professional General Artist
Thanks for teh kick-assery appreciation! (Though the end of EMP 4 could've been even more kickassery-intensive; Emp's climactic, ranting beatdown of the Bad Guy originally went on for 8 or 9 pages straight, before I had to cut it down... Oh, well.)

As for #5, I'm workin', I'm workin'...
Reply
:icongillyperkygoth:
GillyPerkyGoth Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2008  Professional Artist
Aw damn! That would have been fan-freaking-tastic! I look forward muchly to #5^^
Reply
:iconshawnvanbriesen:
ShawnVanBriesen Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2008  Professional Traditional Artist
Just finished # 4. Great work, Adam! Maidman is hilarious.
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:iconadamwarren:
AdamWarren Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2008  Professional General Artist
Thankew, thankew... Glad you liked The Lacy Knight! (Just kidding, as I haven't actually figured out Maidman's nicknames yet.)
Reply
:iconshawnvanbriesen:
ShawnVanBriesen Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2008  Professional Traditional Artist
The Creped Crusader?
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:iconzefram:
Zefram Featured By Owner Nov 18, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
The Dainty Destroyer! :D
Reply
:iconhughyeman:
HughYeman Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2008
WOO HOO! I work on Wall Street, and as such may be laid off at any second, yet I can't resist reading "Empowered #4" here at work. "Dr. Big McLarge Huge"??? BWAHAHAHAHA!!!! Would he be mild-mannered reporter Bob Johnson by day, perhaps?
Reply
:iconsigojwana:
Sigojwana Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2008
This is the first Empowered I bought having appropriated the previous volumes from a friend and I have to say it was worth the purchase. Great characters, great concepts, great storyline and great art I'd say as far as these things go the Empverse is as good as the Invinciverse. I like the way you jutified any fanservice involving women with copious amounts of manservice and yet didn't go so overboard that you'd risk forcing readers to question their sexuality.

Spoilers for those who haven't read it or read remarkably slowly
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It seems to me Emp's suit might have weather manipulation abilities and whilt this goes with her powers being confidence based ie when she's distraught thunderstorms are imminent it doesn't seem like very supersuity.

Powerlevels are nigh impossible to pin down in this book but I reckon that a motivated Emp may be an unstoppable force once she grasps the totallity of the suits capabilities
Reply
:iconunkiedev:
unkiedev Featured By Owner Nov 3, 2008
I've bought everthing you've ever done since the First Dirty Pair delux edition way back in the last millenium and I tell you what: I LOVE Empowered THE MOST. I write a small column for a comic shop in the big apple and I always flog yer' wares, sir.

And Vol. 4 was amazing! Keep it up!
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:iconadamwarren:
AdamWarren Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2008  Professional General Artist
I'll do my best... Thanks for the EMP flogging! (No, wait, that sounds bad...)
Reply
:icontoegar:
toegar Featured By Owner Nov 2, 2008  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Great Book! I have to commend the author on adding the film dialogue from that obviously missed Oscar nomination, Commando!

Ah yes, the one moment in the film that Arnold gives our children and ourselves a word of advice and warring on our society's evil's (Curse you Culture Club with Vile lyrics of societal Damnation and Subversion!!). Thank Goodness he goes on to show us killing, blowing up, Chopping up and shooting up people is O.K.! Ah yes, now when I'm in my garden shed I know that at my fingertips are a vast array of witty ways to whack a wherry, witless wrongdoer! Thanks Arnold! And thanks Adam for another great book! I did like the relation of Mind &#$!, irony!

Hope the home rebuild goes well...I feel your pain rebuilding a quarter of my home as well...Bob Vella, I am not! What are you doing to it if you don't mind?
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:iconkais86:
Kais86 Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2008
Awesome book. Not really spoiling anything but Emp gets a Crowning moment of Awesome, which my only response was 'bout damn time'.
Reply
:iconelnegromagnifico:
ElNegroMagnifico Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2008
Bought my copy this evening, and had a lot of fun devouring it! Gonna read it again once I get back from a lil' night life.
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:iconflyingsquiggle:
flyingsquiggle Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Some thoughts -

1) Terrific mystery. Set up well, solvable, and fun.
2) I think this is the first naked denouement in the history of crime fiction. It should not be the last.
3) Excellent work as usual, though between the "unfiltered" thoughts of Mind**** and the convoluted grammar of the Caged Demonwolf, it can be a bit tiring trying to understand all your supraspeak.
Reply
:iconheaven-28:
Heaven-28 Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2008
This book is amazing! If you dont like it then you might want to seek help. Even if your not into bondage or strait sex the action and comdy is enough to keep you going. great book and i cant wait for volume five.
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:iconcolinmo:
colinmo Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2008
I agree, Willy Pete is teh creepy. Devoured my copy in a day as soon as I got it.

What really stood out to me was like Emp says, there's much less tied-up-superheroine in this one and it doesn't suffer without it - it's really enjoyable seeing you bring out all the characters characteristics into comic comedy theatre. Good storyline tieing all the chapters together, really going well well that. Glad to see Ninjette back in the swing - and please add me to the Caged Demonwolf fanclub. Called shot to the forth wall indeed.

Now, I like my cheesecake as much as the next guy - but funny is funny and you've made characters to care about and to loathe (yah boo sucks Super Homeys).
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:icondamondasaru:
DamonDaSaru Featured By Owner Oct 30, 2008
Yay for #4!!
And now to do the waiting game..

And er, sorry for the rejection..
Reply
:iconadamwarren:
AdamWarren Featured By Owner Oct 31, 2008  Professional General Artist
Ehh, don't sweat it; rejection is par for the course in my line of work. Even successful writers (which, admittedly, I am not) rack up dozens of failed pitches. Also: thanks for the "yay" on #4!
Reply
:icondamondasaru:
DamonDaSaru Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2008
Yeah, but still, you know, that's one less Adam Warren related product on the market..

Meanwhile..GAH!! Why are things so slow to arrive this part of this world?
Still waiting for #4..
Reply
:iconmichaelcrichlow:
MichaelCrichlow Featured By Owner Oct 30, 2008
I picked up my copy yesterday! Love it! :D :heart:
Reply
:iconturbov21:
turbov21 Featured By Owner Oct 30, 2008
Good book! Very good book. I didn't know how you could top the ninja fight at the end of Emp 3, but you did!
Reply
:iconelnegromagnifico:
ElNegroMagnifico Featured By Owner Oct 30, 2008
God willing, I'll be picking this up on Friday!
Reply
:iconjohnchrist:
johnchrist Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2008
Bought my copy today, can't wait to dip inside!
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:iconshaunc:
shaunC Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2008   General Artist
I always wait patiently for your works, they're always worth the wait...
Reply
:icontomorrowtom:
tomorrowtom Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2008
I pre-ordered my copy at Boarders in early September, and had to pre-order it again just yesterday. Not only did their computers say that it wasn't to be shipped until the 31rst, but it also said that they wouldn't be carrying vol. 4 at all. However, the order went through and I should have my copy in 7 days... If all else fails, my sister is manager at our local Books-A-Million, and I'll have her see what she can't do...
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:icondamions:
DamionS Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2008  Professional Filmographer
YAY! I saw it at Atomic Comics today. I'm gonna get it as soon as I get some more $$$ :w00t:
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:iconcaseypalmer:
CaseyPalmer Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2008  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I bought me a copy! I haven't even opened it yet, though =/ Maybe tomorrow when I wake up.
Reply
:iconluciferlive:
luciferlive Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2008  Professional Artist
picked mine up this morning...(the perks of working at a comic shop!) whooo hooo!
Reply
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