Dynamite has been reviving the fertile pulp coffers of late for such characters as the Shadow and the Spider and so on, and even Lady Rawhide, a female sidekick for Zorro who starred in several Topps comics back in the 90s.
Dynamite Entertainment proudly announces the August 2013 debut of LADY RAWHIDE #1, the first chapter of a five-part miniseries that will dynamically reintroduce the iconic Western heroine to comic book fans. Written by Eric Trautmann (RED SONJA,VAMPIRELLA) and featuring interior artwork by Milton Estevam, LADY RAWHIDE #1 features cover artwork by the preeminent “good girl” artist, Joseph Michael Linsner (DAWN).
But unlike those other pulp characters, Lady Rawhide does not date back to the misty pre TV days of cheap magazines: she was created by writer Don McGregor and artist Mike Mayhew for Topps—as her skimpy “Bad Girl era” attire (and Linsner version) suggests. And McGregor is writing on Facebook that he wasn’t even consulted about the revival:
From CARL BOOTH:
Damn, glad to see Lady Rawhide is back, but no mention of the creator, Don McGregor!!!
From DON McGREGOR:
First I’m reading about it. I created Lady Rawhide, and wrote every Topps comic featuring her. Zorro Productions has a contract with me that I get a percentage of anything done with characters I created. Are Zorro Productions and Dynamite now screwing creators?
Uh oh another older creator who signed a bad contract? McGregor says he actually negotiated a royalty deal with Zorro Productions and when asked “Does it ever stop?” replies:
Apparently not. Not even when you meet personally with the head of Zorro Productions and have it put in writing. I was weary of creating characters and then people who could not create would see ALL the money derived from them. Marvel wanted me to come back, at the time I was just starting to research Zorro, and create an alien world for Professor X. I preferred working with Jim Salicrup, and was so invested by that time in creating Lady Rawhide, Machete, Moonstalker, Star Wolf, Scarlet Fever and the others that I didn’t have time to even do a series for Milestone. I had a strong story that I told Dwayne McDuffie when he approached me, and he never flinched. But I never would have been able to keep his deadline, especially when Zorro Vs. Dracula came along.
In a later post he writes:
I would not have written the Zorro series without creating Lady Rawhide. As Jim Salicrup can tell you I could not commit to a monthly book that that did not have any women in the series. I did not do Lady Rawhide in the newspaper strip, and created Eulalia Bandini, because Lady Rawhide’s character was such a source of contention with some people at Zorro Productions until she became so popular.
I fought hard for her character through-out the series
At press time, Dynamite had not responded to inquiries.
Dynamite’s Nick Barrucci has responded with this comment, which as one Beat commenter points out that the book hasn’t even been published yet, let alone become profitable enough for royalties.
Sigh Don. Just sigh. I’m running around the city in meetings. Funny coincidence – Last night I had a meeting with two comics creators, and the interesting thing about when they talk about royalties. They get them after the book ships and after the end of the reporting period. You know, the way the world works. They don’t seem to get paid based on an announcement. Now, a book gets announced and Don is already being screwed out of any financial compensation that he has an agreement on? I doubt it. I’ve worked with the Zorro Property Owners for 4 years, and they always honor not only their contracts, but their word. I’m not speaking for them, but saying what in my experience and what I can comfortably say for the experience that I’ve had with Matt Wagner and others.
Don talks about “honest failure” to the audience. I guess it’s ok if he lets them down. I have a lot of respect for Don. But this was unfair to Zorro Properties to go out there and make these claims without asking anyone what the release schedule was, the book ships, etc.
It would have been nice if Don would have been professional and asked honest questions before making wild assertions. And then complain if he’s not happy. Which he is happy to do.
Don – feel free to drop me a line directly to answer any questions – email@example.com
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.