Happy New Year folks! As we here at the L.E.M.U.R. Comics Blog orbiting space station settle in for a night of sorting comics, we’d like to wish you and yours the happiest of 2013’s. New Comics Wednesday is still Wednesday this week, so let’s take a look at this week’s new and noteworthy titles.
There are six characters on this cover. Care to count how many feet are drawn?
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER WILLOW WONDERLAND #3- I really took a gamble here, betting that Jeff Parker would be able to tell a good story to someone who knows less than nothing about Buffy or their cast of characters. He’s really done a great job getting to the core of the character (Willow is a witch looking to bring Magic back to Earth, nuff said) without burdening the book with needless continuity. MAYBE there’s shoutouts to the diehards in here, but it’s nothing that prevents me from enjoying a really solid fantasy title.
- GLORY #31
- MANHATTAN PROJECTS #8
- PUNK ROCK JESUS #6 – PRJ has been the one of the biggest surprises of 2012 for me. Sean Murphy has just knocked this book out of the park and even as I’m looking forward to the end of the extraordinary comic I know we’re going to continue to see great work from him.
- YOUNGBLOOD #75 – Perhaps the “Extremest” of the Extreme relaunch titles, as it was The Rob’s initial book when he started at Image, and it’s the one that holds closest to its original vision as Glory becomes a fantasy title and Prophet is now lo-fi sci-fi (not that there’s anything wrong with that!). Youngblood sticks to the core idea of government-sanctioned heroes, does it well, and even has some solid Liefeldian art thanks to Jon Malin. And despite all MY predictions, at least, several issues have some out on schedule. They’re doing things right over in the Extreme offices, folks.
That’s it for this week, and see you in 2013.
Man, the Christmas holiday must have destroyed my brain’s ability to determine what day of the week it is, because we’re at New Comic Day and I think it’s Monday. So with a week so light I thought Diamond’s web site loaded incorrectly, here’s a look at this week’s new and noteworthy titles.
- AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #700 – I have OCD price points, it’s one of my least endearing qualities, and yet $8 for over 100 pages of material is an terrific deal. Factor in that this is a huge anniversary issue and the “last” issue of Amazing, I’m definitely on-board here.
- AVENGING SPIDER-MAN #15.1 – The “missing link” between Amazing and Superior, for three bucks on a light week I’ll definitely pick this up.
And aside from some Justice League, that’s just about all that’s even coming out this week, so I’ll just take the opportunity to wish everyone happy holidays and good reading.
A week with new issues of Daredevil and Hawkeye MIGHT just be the greatest Festivus miracle of all. Here are this week’s new and noteworthy releases.
- DAREDEVIL #21
- HAPPY #3
- HAWKEYE #6
- JUDGE DREDD #2 – IDW’s new Dredd series so far seems to be more of the same, in terms of the Judge. That is, short dark 80’s-style takes of law and order designed to unnerve and usually with some sort of twist at the end. So if you’re looking for a Dredd series that’s current and American but keeps the feel of the original strips from 2000 AD, this is a good choice.
- JUDGE DREDD GARTH ENNIS COLL TP – As I’ve said, I’m no Judge Dredd connoisseur, but I DO love Garth Ennis’s work, so I’m going to snag this.
- MASKS #2 – As much as I’ve been talking this series up, I somehow missed the first issue! My LCS was completely sold out by the time I got there on Saturday and I haven’t found a print copy yet. That said, ComiXology is releasing a free digital comic every day until Christmas, so I was able to snag one for my iPad.
- SAGA #8
- SUPREME #67 – This is the penultimate or last issue of Erik Larsen’s run, and even though it’s been a while I find myself REALLY missing it. That’s pretty surprising given how put off I was by his first solo issue after taking over from Alan Moore. But to his credit he DIDN’T burn the playhouse down, he worked within the established framework and has gone his own way, creating something that relies on what came before but has his unique touch.
- THUNDERBOLTS #2 – Man, Thunderbolts is a tough one. Much like Rick Remender’s excellent Frankencastle, this story works great on it’s own but not as well if you stop to think about outside continuity at all. Not for a second can I really see these characters working together (ESPECIALLY any of these people and Deadpool) so it really feels like an attempt to build a team of anti-heroes, a far cry from the original mission statement of villains masquerading as heroes or it’s longest raison d’etre of villains seeking redemption. That said, this is a well-written book by Daniel Way, which taken in a vacuum is a a nice “building the team” issue. Will it hold on? I can’t say, but it’s an interesting shift in the T-Bolts concept.
That’s it for this week. What looks good to you?
Not just a BUNCH of fun releases this week, but spanning the widest range of styles and genres I can recall recently. Here are this week’s new and noteworthy titles.
- ARCHER & ARMSTRONG (NEW) #5
- ATOMIC ROBO FLYING SHE DEVILS O/T PACIFIC #5 – This is somewhat new to me: an Atomic Robo series I’ve had a hard time getting in to. But it’s still better than a majority of comics on the market, even if you’re trade-waiting for this one.
- BLOODSHOT (ONGOING) #6
- BRAVEST WARRIORS #1 3RD PTG – It’s science-hero Adventure Time! And if that appeals to you, hit up Bravest Warriors before it’s too late.
- CROW SKINNING THE WOLVES #1 – James O’Barr, creator of the Crow, returns to his creation here. And though new takes on the concept have all dropped like soggy noodles, I’ve got to give him the benefit of the doubt.
- IMAGE FIRSTS – Image success stories Chew, Fatale, Manhattan Projects, Revival, Saga, Thief of Thieves, Walking Dead all get ONE DOLLAR reprints of their first issues this week. EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM is well worth a buck and represents something NEW in the comic market — or the storytelling market in general. Look at your New 52 or Marvel NOW budget, then see if you have seven measly dollars to support creator-owned comics.
- IT GIRL & THE ATOMICS #5
- LOVE AND CAPES WHAT TO EXPECT #5 – A Matt favorite, out this week. Maybe we can get him to talk up this series soon.
That’s it for this week. Expect reviews later in the week for Avengers #1, Thunderbolts #1, and Adventure Time #10, a comic SO FREAKING good I can’t decide if it’s better than #5, which I absolutely fell in love with. What looks good to you?
Man, I have such a love/hate relationship with Previews. It brings me the things I love each month, but it also subjects me to the most blindingly insane objects our type of fandom has to offer. Still, it’s time to roll through 1700 pages of ads to bring you, the L.E.M.U.R. Comics Blog superfan, a three-month glimpse into the future.
Dark Horse Comics
- Dark Horse Presents #21 – Among some quite noteworthy comic creators in this issue, Neil Gaiman and Paul Chadwick join forces for “The Day the Saucers Came.” And that, friends, is worth 8 bucks.
- Batman: The Dark Knight Returns: A Call to Arms Statue – Because hells yeah. This looks AWESOME!
- Before Watchmen: Dollar Bill #1 – I thought the BW concept was just a one-of group of projects, and that was bad enough, but to then go throwing in MORE one-offs helter skelter just shows that DC will keep going to this well as long as it keeps producing milk. Wait. That’s a metaphor, right? Yeah, sure it is.
- DC Universe by Alan Moore TP – This is a TERRIFIC collection that DC has had the wisdom to kep in print all these years. Even Moore’s throwaway ideas like for the Green Lantern Corps issues prove to be pretty clever, and a huge jumping-off point for Geoff Johns in recent years. But what REALLY makes this interesting is that, with the official DC/WildStorm merger, the latest edition now includes Moore’s miniseries for Voodoo and Deathblow.
- Green Arrow #17 – Jeff Lemire starts a run on the Emerald Archer and I’ve got to say, that’s an amazing draw for the title.
- Hellblazer #300 – The final issue! I’ve only been a casual reader of John Constantine’s adventures, but now that he’s skulking around the DCU proper, it doesn’t really seem to be necessary any longer. And it’s strange, because DC seems to have completely ceded the dark adult creator-owned market to Image these days. Grant Morrison’s Happy, Andy Diggle and Jock’s Snapshot, Jonathan Hickman’s Manhattan Projects, and many, many more are all perfectly suited for Vertigo and yet they’re all at Image. And with the most recent news that Karen Berger has stepped down from her role…well, it just feels like the final nail for a storied comic imprint. Once Fables goes, I suspect the line will go completely.
- Justice League of America #1 – Finally — FINALLY — DC is proving that it will not be beaten by Marvel in the race to the bottom of Good Taste, by producing FIFTY-TWO covers, one for each state in the union plus Washington, DC and Puerto Rico. Oh yeah, Vibe is on the team, too.
- Justice League of America’s Vibe #1 – Don’t worry, he’s just gonna get kakked again. I promise.
- Red Team – Dynamite offers a new series by Garth Ennis, and since it’s not being put out by Avatar, odds are better than average that I’ll be able to read it without projectile vomiting into my mylar bag. Which is nice.
- Rocketeer: Holywood Horror #1 – Oh hey, Roger Langridge is writing a Rocketeer book! IDW is really doing Dave Stevens proud with the level of talent they’ve been booking for this title, and Roger Langridge guarantees the L.E.M.U.R. Comics Blog seal of approval. Art by J. Bone means it’ll be super-pretty, too. Can’t wait for this one!
- Glory #33 – The penultimate issue, and the first book of the Extreme relaunch to go away, but credit to The Rob, he’s letting it go quietly rather than filling it with a new creative team just to keep the book coming out.
- Snapshot #1 – Loser geniuses (this is a compliment!) Andy Diggle and Jock re-team for a new 4-issue miniseries. With that on their resume, they could do just about anything and I’d buy it.
- A+X #5 – With Doop and Iron Fist, it’s like Marvel is putting this out specifically for FotB Andrew.
- Nova #1 – The cartoonification of the 616 hits, as Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness slap Sam Alexander (from the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon) into the Nova Corps helmet. Which is fine, just not really for me.
- Red She-Hulk #62 – I only mention this because Jeff Parker has started referring to Betty Banner’s alter-ego as Cinnamon Hulk, which I totally approve of!
- Uncanny Avengers #5 – It feels like a gimmick, but Rick Remender writing, Olivier Coipel drawing, and THIS great line-up? I just wish it was only $3.
- Nemo: Heart of Ice HC – I haven’t read anything from the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen universe in quite some time, but it’s cool they’re still coming out by the original creators rather than being handed off and forgotten. And the 56 page hardcover is spendy, but an interesting format. Top Shelf DOES have notoriously high print quality on their books.
Wow, there’s not nearly as much this time around; maybe the indies are biding their time to compete for January dollars?
Before wrapping up for this month, I’d like to draw your attention to Brian Hibbs’ most recent “Tilting at Windmills” column over at CBR. The whole thing is worth reading, but if there’s anything worth taking away it’s this, and he says it far better than I have been:
A lot of people think “digital” is going to kill comics. I really don’t — I believe in the physical objects that I sell, and in talking my customers, not a one of them says they’re looking to make a move to digital. No, I think what’s going to “kill comics” is ultimately the quarterly-driven decisions of Warner Bros and Disney that will try to incrementally squeeze more profit until the point that entire thing collapses. Whether it’s $4 bi-weekly comics at one or this type of poisonous lying at the other, the writing is on the wall: they’re going to wring it until it breaks.
That’s it for this month! Orders must be in to your LCS by December 18, 2012 and are scheduled to arrive in February.
There’s a lot of good stuff out this week, and some of it costs ZERO DOLLARS! So let’s dive in.
- CYBER FORCE #2 – First off, this book is FREE as long as your retailer participates, so if you don’t have a good LCS find one that will hook you up. The first issue was a little strange for me, feeling like a long-gone, half-remembered dream. Then I realized it was a retelling — a cover, if you will — of the original CyberForce. And that’s a pretty good idea. The idea and characters had legs, they could just stand to benefit from an experienced writer who can bring a more modern technique and art that’s more than just exciting splash pages. So yeah, this is a book with stellar art by Khoi Pham and Sunny Gho and it’s free.
- HAUNTED HORROR #2 – I really loved this first issue, a collection of old (probably public domain) pre-Code horror books collected by Craig Yoe under his own imprint for IDW. They’re weird, eerie, creepy, and many other adjectives used for old magazines, but they also include work by Jack Cole and Jack Kirby and more that most of us have never heard of, much less seen. A great choice for the classic
horror comic connosieur.
- HAWKEYE #5 – The second part of Hawkeye’s first two-parter, “the tape” could just be a MacGuffin, but since we know what’s on it, regardless of what ramifications it holds for Clint Barton, the significance of our UNDERSTANDING of Clint is already deeply affected. If this is Marvel NOW!, bring me MORE.
- HOUSE OF FUN ONE SHOT – I love Evan Dorkin in a way that may not be entirely healthy. His 90’s work in Dork is one of the pure highlights of that decade for me. He returned to those characters for the relaunched Dark Horse Presents, and those stories (too rich for my blood in that book) are reprinted here.
- JACK KIRBYS FOURTH WORLD OMNIBUS TP VOL 04
- TRANSFORMERS REGENERATION ONE #86
That’s it for this week. What looks good to you?