Robot 6

Food or Comics? | This week’s comics on a budget

Absolute All-Star Superman

If it’s Tuesday, it must be time for Food or Comics?, where every week some of the Robot 6 crew talk about what comics we’d buy if we were subject to certain spending limits — $15 and $30. We also talk about what we’d buy if we had extra money to spend on what we call our “Splurge” item. Check out Diamond’s release list to see what arrives in comic shops this week,then play along in our comments section.

Chris Mautner

I’m running behind and want to go vote, so I’ll try to make this quick:

If I had $15:

The Boys #48 ($3.99) and Godland #33 ($2.99) are the the two must buys for me this week, along with the 17th issue of Berlin ($4.95). It’s been awhile since Jason Lutes published a chapter in this now-decade-plus long serial set in pre-Nazi Germany. I’m just impressed that he’s still sticking to the serial pamphlet format while every other indie artist has abandoned it. Bully for you, Lutes.

If I had $30:

I’ve got it down between three books. I’d either pick up the new, 25th Little Lulu volume from Dark Horse, Burglar Proof Clubhouse ($14.99), the new book from British cartoonist Metaphrog, Louis: Night Salad ($14.99), the sample of which look lovely, or I’d set aside some of those pamphlets and get How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less by Sarah Glidden ($24.99). I read an advance copy of this awhile back and liked it enough to want to seek out the final copy, but I may hold off for now in favor of the Louis book. I’ll save my final decision for when I get to the comics shop.

Splurge:

The $100 Absolute All-Star Superman seems like an easy pick for this category and would be my first choice. For nostalgia’s sake if nothing else I might also take a look at the $50 Art of Jim Starlin: Life in Words and Pictures. Wonder if they have a tribute to his Gilgamesh II in there somewhere?

Michael May

If I had $15:

Strange Tales II #2

I’d spend it all on single issues starting with Strange Tales 2 #2 ($4.99), then adding Days Missing: Kestus #1 (3.95) because the first mini-series was excellent and hey, Phil Hester. I’d round out the pile with a couple of issues of comics I’ve been meaning to check out for a while, but haven’t gotten around to yet: Jonah Hex #61 ($2.99) and Avengers Academy #6 ($2.99). I’m confident that I’m going to enjoy Jonah Hex and I have hopes for Avengers Academy because it has Reptyl in it and I’m a fan of any superhero with the power to turn into different dinosaurs.

If I had $30:

I’d flip through Jonah Hex and Avengers Academy, put one of them back, and pick up BPRD, Volume 14: King of Fear ($17.99) instead. Having just finished a marathon reading of the entire series up to this point, I’m aching for the next installment.

Splurge:

There’s a lot to splurge on this week, but I’ve whittled the list down to four. Topping it is Xenozoic: The Complete Collection ($39.95) because I’ve been wanting to read Mark Schultz’s dinosaur stories since I first heard about them several years ago. I’m also enthusiastic about Good Neighbors, Volume 3: Kind ($16.99). I’m a big fan of Ted Naifeh’s art in general, but this dark fantasy series in particular. I’ve also been waiting impatiently for the first Kill Shakespeare collection ($19.99) to check out the Bard’s answer to Fables. And finally, though I have the original, paperback collection already, there’s enough new stuff in the Coffin 10th Anniversary hardcover that I’d like to get that too.

JK Parkin

If I had $15:

Batman & Robin #16

There’s a lot of books coming out this week that I considered, with many brand-new comics kicking off that have my curiosity piqued. Unfortunately, with so much stuff hitting shelves, it’s really hard to decide between something new and something I’m already familiar with (and have a better sense as to how much I’ll enjoy it). So for my first round here, I thought I’d go with the tried and true. Batman & Robin #16 ($3.99) leads the pack, as it wraps up Grant Morrison’s stellar run. Strange Tales 2 #2, which we previewed a few pages from last week, adds another $4.99 to my total. And then I’d round the week out with two books that end their run: Vertigo’s excellent Unknown Soldier #25 and Hawkeye & Mockingbird #6. I don’t know if a lot of people saw it, but Tom Brevoort noted a couple of weeks ago that after the Widowmaker mini-series wraps up, Hawkeye & Mockingbird won’t be coming back. “However, there will be a project following up on the events of ‘Widowmaker’ that will hopefully scratch your ‘Hawkeye & Mockingbird’ itch,” he said. Hopefully that means writer Jim McCann will still be involved with the characters.

If I had $30:

I’d add some new books to the stack, starting with Superboy #1 ($2.99). I’d also grab Generation Hope #1 ($3.99) and Captain America: Man Out of Time #1 ($3.99). And I’d round it out with the latest issue of Chaos War, although that would mean having to give up the third issue of Taskmaster … hell, I’ll just skip lunch for a few days and go for a double dose of Fred Van Lente.

I still feel like I’m leaving a lot on the shelf — Invincible #75, Amazing Spider-Man #647, etc. but that’s what trade waiting is for, right?

Splurge

Lots of big ticket items caught my eye this week as well. It’s getting closer and closer to the holiday season, and I can already see a few items that’ll be going on my wishlist. There’s Absolute All-Star Superman for $100, How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less ($24.99), PunisherMax: Kingpin ($19.99) and the Squadron Supreme Omnibus ($74.99), just to name a few. I’d go with the Israel book, as it’s the only one I don’t own in another form.

Brigid Alverson

Life with Archie #4

If I had $15…

I would spend $9.99 on the first volume of The Story of Saiunkoku, a historical drama manga that is getting good advance word-of-mouth, and $3.99 on the latest issue of Life with Archie, which is rapidly becoming my new crack.

If I had $30…

I’d skip the manga and get Scott Chantler’s Two Generals ($24.95) instead. I love a good historical graphic novel, and Chantler’s story, which is based on his grandfather’s experiences in World War II, looks fascinating. He’s accompanying it with a research blog where he presents his primary sources, including his grandfather’s diary. I’m in heaven.

And I’m still getting that Life with Archie.

Splurge item:

The Kill Shakespeare graphic novel ($19.99). I already have the floppies, so it’s a bit of a luxury, but I want to have this in a more permanent form, and I’m sure it will be lovely.

And I want to relive my childhood a bit with the latest Little Lulu collection from Dark Horse, Little Lulu: The Burglar-Proof Clubhouse and Other Stories ($14.99).

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