Welcome to another installment of “Food or Comics?” Every week we set certain hypothetical spending limits on ourselves and go through the agony of trying to determine what comes home and what stays on the shelves. So join us as we run down what comics we’d buy if we only had $15 and $30 to spend, as well as what we’d get if we had some “mad money” to splurge with.
Check out Diamond’s full release list if you’d like to play along in our comments section.
If I had $15:
As usual, I’d spend it on single issues. Starting with Atomic Robo and the Deadly Art of Science #1 ($3.50), then picking up a couple of Moonstone books: Zeroids #2 ($3.99) and Return of the Originals: From the Vault – The Pulp Files ($1.99). I enjoyed the first issue of the genre-mashing Zeroids and have been looking forward to the next part of the story; From the Vault is sort of Moonstone’s version of The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe or DC’s Who’s Who. I don’t know nearly as much about the classic pulp characters as I’d like, so I’m looking forward to the education. Next I’d check out IDW’s Dungeons & Dragons #1 ($3.99) to see if they’ve figured out how to do a good D&D comic. That brings me to $13.47.
David Peterson was signing copies of his Mouse Guard hardbacks—and giving away the floppies for free, as promotional attractions. The Mouse Guard anthology series launches in May, with single issues out each month through August, followed by a hardcover colection.
I had a hard time deciding what I wanted to talk about this week. Not that anyone’s called me on it yet, but I usually talk here about stuff that I enjoy and I know that that can give the impression that I like everything, which simply isn’t true. In fact, I just read a book that I didn’t like so much and contemplated talking about it instead, if only for variety’s sake. But is criticizing a mediocre, small-press book really how we want to end the year? As Tim O’Shea reminded me when I expressed my indecision on the subject, there’s a lot of bad material out there. Why spend a whole column focused on that when there’s good stuff that can use a larger audience? Mouse Guard may not exactly be an underground comic, but until it hits #1 on every Best Sellers list in the world, I’m considering it under-read.
The first thing you’re struck with by Mouse Guard is how beautiful it is. I was reading Winter 1152 in public the other day and a woman stopped and asked me what it was. As much as I try not to make assumptions about people from their appearances, I’m guessing that this immaculately-dressed businesswoman doesn’t have a large comics collection at home. But she saw David Petersen’s highly realistic, stunningly detailed, and lushly colored artwork and was attracted by it enough to want to know more.
But Mouse Guard is about more than the pictures and the seasons in the title dictate more than just Petersen’s color palettes. There’s a deep, compelling story at work with human characters – mice though they may be – and powerful themes that reflect the time of year they’re set in.
Like the Sunday newspaper, it’s time once again for another round of What Are You Reading. Our guest this week is Ryan Sands, who can be found over at the Same Hat blog, recommending and even translating (Tokyo Zombie) some great, and occasionally bizarre manga (and I mean that in a good way).
To see what Ryan and the rest of us are reading this week, click on the link below. Then let us know what books you’re enjoying and want to recommend (or not) in the comments section.
Welcome once again to What are you reading?, the weekly column where the Robot 6 team runs through what comics and other stuff they’ve been checking out lately. As Chris is in Bethesda this weekend, I’m filling in for him as your host.
Our special guests this time are Philip Gelatt and Rick Lacy, creators of the Labor Days graphic novels published by Oni Press. Volume two, Just Another Damn Day, is now available in finer retail establishments everywhere. (You can check out a preview here).
See what they’ve been reading, as well as the rest of the Robot 6 crew, after the jump …
Publishing | Marvel Comics and IDW Publishing were named Publishers of the Year in Diamond’s annual Gem Awards, which recognize “outstanding suppliers in the comic book specialty market.” Marvel’s Secret Invasion #1 was dubbed Comic Book of the Year in the over-$3 division; Image’s The Walking Dead #50 for under $3. DC Comics’ Joker was named Original Graphic Novel of the Year. [Diamond Comic Distributors]
Conventions | Blogger Deb Aoki provides a manga-centric guide to this weekend’s New York Comic Con. [About.com]