This Week’s Comics

Here’s what’s on my radar for this week.

HAUNT #3 – Issue 3 of Firestorm/Deadman/Spider-Man-Man.  To Kirkman and McFarlane’s credit, though, if this were truly still the early 90’s he’d be called Deadstorm.  Which now that I think about it is pretty catchy.  (C) and TM Jesse Dubin!  Take that, Todd!

I kid, I kid.  This is really a pretty solid superhero book, even if it does wear its influences on its sleeve.

IMAGE UNITED #1 (OF 6) COLLECTORS ED – I knew 7 covers couldn’t be enough.  Image never lets you down.

JSA ALL STARS #1 – Shouldn’t a book called JSA All Stars have, you know, some of the JSA’s all-stars?  Power Girl, the poor man’s Rex Tyler, and a loose assortment of other characters do not a supergroup make.

MARVELS PROJECT #4 ( OF 8 ) – After 10+ years of letting Marvels rest on it’s own laurels, Marvel puts out 2 minis in a year.  Sheesh.  Still, it looks like this has potential.  Is anyone reading this?  Is it good?

SUPERGOD #2 (OF 5) – If I say nothing else about this book, and I may not, this deserves to be said: this book has the best production values of anything on the stands right now.  The cover is beautiful (acetate?), and the paper on the inside is heavy and glossy.  I also say this as someone who wants to hit reviewers when they talk about this stuff.

As for the meat of the thing?  You’ve read it before. Ellis starts off with a list of sciencey things he’s read in the last 4 months, and the last one he lists is the one the book takes off on. If you’ve liked it before, you’ll like it here.  I truly wish Ellis would do something new, but this is a good book if you’re not as burned out as I am.  Aw hell, I’ll probably still pick this one up.  Quality comics is quality comics.

One thing I don’t understand, though, is why Ellis keeps dipping into the superhero well with Avatar. They’ll obviously publish anything he wants to write (see Wolfskin, Gravel, Blackgas), yet he chooses superheroes as often as not.  Is it possible that he doesn’t hate them as much as he lets on?

X-BABIES #3 (OF 4) – I hope Top Dog bites Planet Terry and gives him rabies.

What are YOU getting?

Game Tape

Wednesday has come and gone. The heroes have fought their battles and villains have hinted at things to come. Now it’s time to review the game tape…

Quick, fast, and in a hurry, here are some things from last week.

Jonah Hex #48 reminds us once again why he the roughest, toughest bounty hunter EVER. Besides, who doesn’t like a book guest starring Bat Lash.

Batman and Robin #5 still solid. Scarlet has an interesting moment of clarity and we see that being dead didn’t teach Jason Todd anything. He’s still too arrogant. Bruce made him die his hair? Really Morrison?

Planetary #27 ends in the only way it could. A surprisingly cheery and happy ending from Warren Ellis while condemning every “genius” in the traditional superhero books. Where’s my flying car? It’s in the Planetary universe.

THIS WEEK.

I have no idea why this image keeps popping up as the cover solicit for X-Men Forever #9. Beast was on my cover and the story is about Sentinels. Unless something ungodly happens in this book, this is the last time I’ll mention it for a while. I love this book. I didn’t think I’d ever say that about a non-Parker X-book again. Say what you want about Claremont, and believe me I’ve said a lot, this is his A game. This is a fun X-Men book: no over arching and difficult plot threads, no “message” just mutants doing mutanty things. Thank you Chris Claremont.

I enjoy Secret Six as a whole, but I am also a fan of Suicide Squad. There are some parallels between the two, but they’re more tangentially related than anything else. This week’s book wrapped up a story arc that I haven’t cared for. In some ways, Gail Simone is repeating some of the ideas from the previous arc: the team divides too easily, there’s a wicked seeming betrayal, and a reuniting at the end with everyone buddy-buddy again. This isn’t the only thing that made this arc difficult to like, but won’t go into that here. Suffice it to say that this issue made some interesting promises for things to come. Finally, it was nice to see Bane as something more than the simpering strongman he’s been since he started in this title.

To those who picked up Booster Gold #25 wanting to give it a try: I promise this book is usually better. This is not indicative of how fun and enjoyable BG usually is. I did enjoy the back-up with the new Blue Beetle. Honest, this book has never been this dull.

This is the cup of a carpenter

Matt’s talk of grails the other day made me take a look at my “to buy” list and see what mine were.  There are plenty of books there I can’t (or more likely, don’t want) to afford, but these are the ones I can never, ever seem to find.

  • Aztek – This book shouldn’t be near as hard to find as it is. There’s nothing spectacular about it, except Morrison and Millar writing it (together, back when they did that) exceptionally well in the mid-90’s wasteland.  It tied in at the end with Morrison’s stellar JLA run, which is a little noteworthy. I’ve managed to find most of them, but 7 and 8 remain elusive.
  • Flex Mentallo – Another Morrison book, this one a spin-off mini from Doom Patrol involving a Charles Atlas-esque character that got DC sued. The judgment was that the mini could never be reprinted, so that makes finding it impossible at any price. I stumbled across issue #4 in a $.50 bin, though, so I know it’s possible to finish it off if I just. keep. hunting.
  • Last Avengers Story 2 & Ruins 2 – There are two strange things about this, that Marvel kept tapping writers for apocalyptic stories about their characters, and that the first issues are so easy to find and the last issues are so not.
  • StormWatch (the Ellis run) – The fortunate thing about Stormwatch is that Wildstorm has been good about keeping the Ellis run in print, but if you want the individual issues? Well, good luck. I’m stuck with a pretty big range of issues left to fill in; you’d think that would make finding one or two here and there easier, but you’d be wrong. Every once in a while I can cross one more off the list, but it’s not often.

In the future I see myself writing about grails I’ve already found, but that would requre taking a longer, harder look at ComicBase than I feel comfortable with.  The one that immediately springs to mind, though, is when I found the third Miracleman TPB for cover price.  WIN!