Previews Catalogue, booze, Last.fm and a long night ahead of us. It’s been a long time since I’ve done this column. Let’s give it a go.
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #567-569
VENOM DARK ORIGIN #1
A sexy sassy new female Kraven the Hunter stringing DD and Spidey up in chains? Did I guess right, Marvel? And a week later the beginning of the much-lauded ‘New Ways To Die’ storyline (6 issues do seem like a huge deal now after the excellent string of self-contained adventures), featuring the return of the Goblin (hey, he was already back last week in Thunderbolts), Venom/Eddie Brock (aww, the miss each other?) and the introduction of… Anti-Venom? Not sure if it’s really front page news as the media treated it, but John Romita JR BAY-BEE!!
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN FAMILY #1
KING-SIZE SPIDER-MAN SPECIAL
J.M. DeMatteis is one of the definitive Spider-man writers of all time, putting a stamp on the best psychological thrillers involving the character (Kraven’s Last Hunt, Spectacular Spider-man) as well as the genius behind Legion of Losers! So, J.M. pens the untold story of the day after Uncle Ben died; DeFalco with Frenz oddly enough write a spider-marriage story (huh? didn’t we kill that?) with baby May (Mr & Mrs Spider-man); and either Giffen or Tobin bombast us with the team-up of the century: MJ, Jean Grey (is this the historic first meeting?), Shulkie and Hellcat vs the Enchantress. You know it’s fun!
TERRY MOORE WATCH!
SPIDERMAN LOVES MARY JANE v.2 #1
RUNAWAYS v.3 #1
SPIDER-MAN LOVES MARY JANE OVER-SIZED HARDCOVER v.2
McKeever and BKV may have left Marvel, but noone better than Moore (STRANGERS IN PARADISE) to relaunch Marvel’s greatest teen books. Marvel’s wisely re-releasing the rest of the McKeever SMLMJ run on oversized hardcover to coincide with the launch. P.S. did I mention SPIDEY-KONG?
MARK MILLAR WATCH!
FANTASTIC FOUR #560
Howwwww? Mark Millar has a personal crossover event, linking his seemingly unlinkable titles all the way to December. Is this more than a sales ploy? Why not just write good stories? Why does everything have to be a big event? Could this save the abysmal sales on his FF? Should it?
JASON AARON WATCH!
BLACK PANTHER #40
WOLVERINE: GET MYSTIQUE TPB
The definite best Wolvie story of this decade (then again there wasn’t a lot of competition there) gets traded, Danny Ketch GR returns and J.A. continues his Marvel takeover with a guest-stint on Secret Invasion: Black Panther. He’s got competition though:
MATT FRACTION WATCH!
IMMORTAL IRON FIST: THE ORIGIN OF DANNY RAND
INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #4
SECRET INVASION THOR #1
PUNISHER WAR JOURNAL #22
UNCANNY X-MEN #501
Noone can stop the Fraction! The best new writer of his generation (I said it first!), Fraction is gearing up to write the entire Marvel U soon! Iron Fist is a reprint of the character’s first appearance with a Fraction framing sequence; UXM starts a new storyline showcasing Pixie vs the Hellfire Cult (?); the big news is the Thor mini, continuing a series of great Thor stories from Matt, featuring Dougie Braithwaite (UNIVERSE X, JUSTICE) art and the return of Beta Ray Bill!
MARVEL ADVENTURES WATCH!
MA: FANTASTIC FOUR #39
MA: SPIDER-MAN #42
MA: HULK #14
MA: ADVENTURES #27
MA: SUPER-HEROES #2
WOLVERINE: FIRST CLASS #6
X-MEN FIRST CLASS #15
SKRULLS vs POWER PACK #2
It’s the fun side of the Marvel U! One by one: the ultimate Ben vs Johnny prank show-down in ‘silent but deadly’; Black Cat vs the Puma; PAD writing the Hulk in the Microverse; the last Jeff Parker Avengers story (!!!); Hulk, Iron Man and Spidey playing intergalactic frat sports, including KREE KARAOKE (??); Siryn & Kitty have a mutant sleep-over; the original X-Men vs Medusa; the Skrull Power Pack become teen gangsters?!
SECRET INVASION WATCH!
SECRET INVASION #5
MIGHTY AVENGERS #17
NEW AVENGERS #44
AVENGERS THE INITIATIVE #16
SI: INHUMANS #1
SI: THOR #1
SI: X-MEN #1
SI: SPIDER-MAN BRAND NEW DAY #1
SI: RUNAWAYS/YOUNG AVENGERS #3
SI: FRONTLINE #2
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #4
INCREDIBLE HERCULES #120
MS MARVEL #30
CAPTAIN BRITAIN AND THE MI13 #4
NEW WARRIORS #15
BLACK PANTHER #40
SKRULLS vs POWER PACK #2
No, seriously… TWENTY-ONE titles, Marvel? -sigh-
What? Plot details? Everyone fights these alien shape-shifter dudes. They’re, like, invading. I didn’t even know you could write 21 interesting Skrull stories. Let alone multiplied by 5-6 months. Highlights among the titles include: Bendis doing some good Avengers work for a change, Carey writing the full X-Men cast, Mar-Vell vs Marvel Boy (MA), the Skrull Kill Krew return in Initiative, Fraction writing Thor, Jason Aaron writing Black Panther, more Young Avengers, the return of Longshot (hurray), and the daughter of the Super-Skrull!
PATSY WALKER: HELLCAT #2
From the writer of the excellent MCP Hellcat stories and hot new talent David LaFuente. Patsy Walker tentacle porn!
YOUNG X-MEN #5
…sucks. Marvel seems to think otherwise in this cringe-worthy rose-tinted solicit, but oh well… Oh yeah, ‘nothing will ever be the same again’ and ‘we know a lot of books make that claim, but […] you nkow this one’s for real’. Yeah dude, sure.
X-MEN ORIGINS: JEAN GREY
Sean McKeever returning to Marvel for a teen Jean oneshot with Mike Mayhew art!
X-FACTOR SPECIAL LAYLA MILLER
PAD promises to finally reveal the secrets of the Summer Rebellion from Bishop’s future. Did anyone else even remember about this? All I care for is more wise-ass-ery from Layla!
ELEKTRA BY FRANK MILLER OMNIBUS
Collecting ELEKTRA ASSASSIN (with Bill Sienkiewicz), ELEKTRA LIVES AGAIN and one-shots. Absolute classic stuff.
YOUNG INHUMANS TPB
Collecting the entire 12-issue Tsunami INHUMANS run, McKeever first mainstream work for Marvel, starring the teen Inhumans (introduced in Jenkin’s groundbreaking mini) moving to America to experience human culture (and campus life)!
ESSENTIAL MAN-THING vol.2 TPB
DEAD OF NIGHT FEATURING MAN-THING
Now how about collecting the DeMatteis/Sharp run to top off the Man-Thing goodness? 🙂
DARK HORSE COMICS
As the fake Capey (Spandex-set Oscars) proclaims, this is the Suprahuman Most Deserving of Wider recognition. A super sex-ploitation fun romp starring a busty blonde airhead super-heroine whose powers depend on the integrity of her ridiculously easily-tattered skin-tight costume. Body issues, sex, peer pressure and lots – lots -LOTS of bondage scenes! Written and drawn (well, pencil sketched) by auter Adam Warren. Most Highly Recommended!
GHOST OMNIBUS v.1
Early Terry Dodson and Adam Hughes art in a smile-price package!
MISTER X ARCHIVES
The stylish cover got my attention. Referred to as a ground-breaking piece of work from 25 years ago, featuring early work from J. Hernandez, Dave McKean, Dean Motter and Seth! Priced in the Omnibus high range unfortunately.
THE UMBRELLA ACADEMY: APOCALYPSE SUITE HARDCOVER
An oversized hardcover collecting the entire mini plus the hard-to-find FCBD2007 issue and the never- before- published MySpace story along with tons of extras. A worthwhile edition of the breakout hit of 2007!
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #17
Joss Whedon and Karl Moline (FRAY) on the Buffy /Fray team-up that noone expected to see!
HELLBOY: THE CROOKED MAN #2
Richard Corben drawing Hellboy!
FINAL CRISIS WATCH!
FC: REVELATIONS #1
FC: LEGION OF THREE WORLDS #1
DC UNIVERSE: LAST WILL & TESTAMENT
FC: SUPERMAN BEYOND #1
FC: ROGUES’ REVENGE #2
See? That’s more sane. A tight grouping of tie-in titles, even in the gap month between issues 3 and 4 of the main event book. and look at the creator credits. This isn’t random fill-in material. Rucka shoehorns his new Spectre/Question book into the FC event; Geoff Johns and George Perez continue the Super
boyman Prime saga while making sense of the three different Legions running around; Brad Metzler and Adam Kubert take an intimate look at the heroes in the middle of the crisis (with a link to legacies, as hinted by the great cover); Morrison writes a team-up between every alternate reality Superman, with art by Doug Mahnke and a special 3D surprise section; the classic Flash team of Johns and Kolins return for the wrap-up of their Rogues saga. I’m buying everything. Shock!
The now infamous ‘Tacky Sex’ cover. Ugh.
ALL-STAR SUPERMAN #12
Morrison and Frank Quitely wrap up the best Superman run of the decade.
Toddler versions of Batman and Superman invade our Earth! Superkid and Bat-tot ? I sure hope so!
BIRDS OF PREY #121
THE BRAVE & THE BOLD #16
The Birds of Prey versus Joker! Superman vs Catwoman… in bed? DC’s best covers of the month!
INFINITY INC. #12
Final Issue for Milligan’s under-appreciated and badly promoted look at the troubled teen survivors of Luthor’s Everyman project.
BIRDS OF PREY: METROPOLIS OR DUST TPB
The complete collection of Sean McKeever’s run on the title.Brief but brilliant!
DC COMICS GOES APE TPB
DC’s answer to Marvel’s recent ‘Marvel Apes’ convention announcement: ‘We did it first, and we probably did it better too’. Collecting elevent self-contained ape-centric stories from DC’s treasury.
DC UNIVERSE ILLUSTRATED BY NEAL ADAMS vol.1 HARDCOVER
The first of three prestige hardcovers paying tribute to Neal Adams’ stamp on the DCU, following the example of the DEADMAN COLLECTION.
KINGDOM COME TP – NEW EDITION
Reprint with a stunning foldout Alex Ross cover only available on the first printing edition. And the speculators go BOOM
THE AUTHORITY: WORLD’S END #1
GEN13: WORLD’S END #21
STORMWATCH PHD: WORLD’S END #13
WILDCATS: WOLRD’S END #2
Yawn. So there’s some sort of apocalyptic event going on in NUMBER OF THE BEAST. Is anyone even reading that? Why is everyone at Wildstorm editorial hell-bent on tying these titles so close together in continuity when it’s clear they don’t really fit well together. Authority relaunches once again with DNA on the writing helm and some newcomer on art – doesn’t sound too awe-inspiring for the old chart-topper; Stormwatch returns but without Gage or Mahnke; the Wildstorm universe continues the downward spiral from the worst relaunch in the history of relaunches.
JANES IN LOVE
Castellucci and Rugg’s fan-favourite Janes return for their second album! Emiko Superstar doesn’t have any info to grab our attention but still getting it on the strength of every Minx release so far.
FABLES: COVERS BY JAMES JEAN HC
ARMY@LOVE: THE ART OF WAR #1
SCALPED vol. 3 : DEAD MOTHERS
Y THE LAST MAN DELUXE EDITION BOOK 1 HC
Vertigo struggles along.
-The newest ongoing ‘Air’ doesn’t look too promising. A vigilante group looking to take the skies back from terrorists? The preview pages have the same awkward storytelling and dialogue as the team’s previous work, CAIRO. I’ll be skipping this, despite the extra-pages deal on the first issue.
-FABLES takes a gap month, but releases a hardcover collection of James Jean’s stunning covers.
-ARMY@LOVE (the book almost every fan and critic trashed) returns (why?) with a striking Mona Lisa cover.
-SCALPED remains Vertigo’ best current series. New tpb and storyline wrap this month.
-Y THE LAST MAN gets collected in 10-issue hardcovers with new covers. Why not an actual absolute edition though? Keep your money for the eventual release.
WATCHMEN MOVIE: ACTION FIGURE ASSORTMENT #1
Expectedly dorky, as is the way with movie tie-in figures. Why not release them from Gibbons’ designs?
THE JOKER POKER SET
Fun! A card deck ‘defaced; by the Joker with manic scribblings on each card, and Joker-faced poker chips.
AME-COMI HAWKGIRL FIGURE
I wish these character designs would somehow make their way into an actual DC comic. They really salvage some dorky looking super-heroines
A carnival handyman fighting against a demonic invasion? The previews look sweet and the solicits call upon PREACHER and GOON. No you’ve caught my attention, let’s see how you deliver.
A comic about Gorilla soldiers in Vietnam– that DOESN’T have any actual monkeys on the cover? Did these guys miss Marketing 101? Monkey’s sell ON THE COVER!
FRANK FRAZETTA’S DRACULA MEETS THE WOLF-MAN
A story inspired by a Frazetta painting (see Guerillas crew? these guys know how to drum up marketing out of thin air). Steve Niles is a guarantee on horror.
IMAGE MONSTER PILE-UP
A $1.99 comic featuring new short stories from the ongoing series PROOF, ASTOUNDING WOLF-MAN, FIREBREATHER and PERHARPANAUTS in a clever cross-promotion event.
THE ROBERTS #1
By the great Wayne Chinsang (HEAVEN LLC). The Boston Strangler and the Zodiac Killer swap stories in their retirement home.
INVINCIBLE: THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION vOL.4 HC
NOBLE CAUSES #37
SAVAGE DRAGON #139
The best way to experience Kirkman’s best work. An affordable oversized hardcover of issues 36-47.
Plus a new monthly issue and two guest-star spots trying to rub off some of the character’s popularity on the rest of the Image super-hero line.
MADMAN ATOMIC COMICS #12
Introducing MADGIRL! What, how can you resist that visual? BUY!
YOU’LL ALL BE SORRY MMPB
ABOUT COMICS p. 196
A must-buy collection of Gail Simone’s humour columns from CBR, the material that made her famous and led to her amazing comics writing career. I was fortunate enough to be included as a proof-reader back in the final year of columns. History in the making here folks, and every single column a laugh-out-loud pleasure.
AMAZE INK/SLG WATCH: p. 200
THE BABYSITTER OGN
UBU BUBU #3
BIFF! BAM! POW! #1
Japan’s first jet-pack superhero babysitter!
Jamie Smart’s newest issue starring the demonic possessed kitty.
Evan Dorkin’s DORK substitute offered again.
AVATAR PRESS WATCH: p. 221
ANNA MERCURY BUST
GRAVEL: NEVER A DULL DAY SIGNED HC
WARREN ELLIS’ SCARS TPB
ANNA MERCURY #5
DOKTOR SLEEPLESS #10
-The most twisted book of Garth Ennis’ career? Wow. Half the enjoyment of Ennis’ books in Avatar is seeing what new absurd ways he can find to shock his audience. Promising.
-A beautiful bust starring Ellis’ newest superheroine icon.
-A hardcover collection of all 24 Gravel issues and oneshots! Pity about that cover price though. Can we get an unsigned edition for cheaper? Limited to 2000 copies (no wonder the monthlies are running late)
-Three new issues of the regular monthly Warren Ellis titles.
SOUVLAKI CIRCUS HC
BUENAVENTURA PRESS p. 243
A series of pencil sketches featuring offbeat metaphoric anecdotes. I just really dig the name!
THE BOYS DEFINITIVE EDITION HC
DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT p. 249
Ennis and Robertson’s landmark ongoing collected in oversized 14-issue slipcased hardcovers! Sexy, although the price tag may hinder some.
HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL vol.1 GN
DISNEY PRESS p. 286
A graphic novel adaptation of the hit teen musical. Meh for me, but surely exciting for my friend Tyler and other teen girls. 😉
JAMILTI & OTHER STORIES HC
DRAWN & QUARTERLY p.288
A new collection of short stories from Rutu Modan (EXIT WOUNDS)
FANTAGRAPHICS WATCH: p. 298
GHOST WORLD: THE SPECIAL EDITION
-a 280pg hardcover release of the original 80pg graphic novel GHOST WORLD. That’s 200 pages of ‘DVD extras’, in this case sketches, short stories, the Oscar-nominated screenplay. Drool…
-A darkly (daaarkly) pessimistic book that I seem to have fallen for inexplicably
-The cartoon adventures of two white supremacist brothers and their wacky household.
SIXTEEN MILES TO MERRICKS
FROGCHILDREN STUDIOS p. 304
24 page preview here.
THE VOYAGES OF SHEBUCCANEER #2
GREAT BIG COMICS p.312
The cover looks like the TAROT of pirate comics.. Then again, it features an unexpected attack from the Giant Mutant Cannibals of Atlantis. You know it has to be worth a look.
IDW WATCH: p.316
WELCOME TO HOXFORD #1
DOCTOR WHO THE FORGOTTEN #1
GALAXY QUEST: GLOBAL WARMING #1
FALLEN ANGEL #29
Too many great stuff!
-Ben Templesmith’s newest horror story, set in a sanitarium
-Tony Lee (beer god and writer of HOPE FALLS) and Pia Guerra (Y THE LAST MAN) teaming up on the new DOCTOR WHO license
-My very best friends Scott Lobdell (X-MEN) and Greek superstar Ilias Kyriazis (ZUDA, DHP) starting an exciting comic book sequel to the GALAXY QUEST movie
-Newest PAD Fallen Angel
ONI PRESS p.334
A very affordable hardcover collection of LOCAL #1-12 from Brian Wood and Ryan Kelly, following a girl’s life as she travels around America trying to find new roots, each issue taking place in a different year of her life.
I WAS KIDNAPPED BY LESBIAN PIRATES FROM OUTER SPACE #4
PLATINUM STUDIOS p. 340
Really. You really need me to tell you something else about this? It does what it says on the label.
RADICAL COMICS WATCH: p. 344
FREEDOM FORMULA #1
New issues for the Hercules epic story and the Western Excalibur (where the sword is indeed a gun firing lightning at the hands of a worthy sherriff). The launch of a new sci-fi futuristic story set in a world where pilots are genetically engineered and bred to race. Radical really is a major publishing force in the making.
SAM & MAX: SURFIN’ THE HIGHWAY
TELLTALE INC. p.349
A reprint of the original Sam & Max comics from the 80s. Now (once more) a hit adventure game series.
I LUV HALLOWEEN – ULTIMATE TWISTED EDITION
TOKYOPOP p. 352
Boy am I glad I missed this the first time out. An affordable hardcover (what is it this month with hardcover indie reprints?) reprint of the first three Giffen/Roman freaky manga about a roving gang of evil trick & treater kids, only this time: in full colour! HA! Lovin’ it.
MODERN MASTERS VOLUME 16: MIKE ALLRED
TWOMORROWS PUBLISHING p. 363
The ultimate Mike Allred interview jam-packed with hundreds of sketches and colour art reprints. The ultimate source for any Allred fan.
THE STRANDED vol. 1 HARDCOVER
VIRGIN COMICS p.379
The amazing 5 issue mini series from Mike Carey (X-MEN, LUCIFER) that’s being turned into a Sci-Fi original TV series next year, collected into a… you guessed it: limited edition hardcover!
JOKER: LAST LAUGH T-SHIRT
A chilling laughing Joker on black T-Shirt. I know I’ll be proudly wearing it come August!
and ooooooof that’s it for this month!
Pre-order and support your favourite struggling titles and indie publishers 😉
Tags: Dark Horse, Fantagraphics, IDW, Image, Oni Press, Small Press