New 52 Pickup Archives - Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources

New 52 Pickup | Weeks 12 and 13 – Issue 3 Decisions

Batman #3

Each Wednesday, DC’s New 52 hits shelves and CBR Staff Writer Steve Sunu is looking for the best bang for the buck in ongoing series. Cutting half his pull list each month from the original 52 in a battle royale, Steve has already narrowed the number to just 13 books. Which titles will make it past Issue 3?

It’s a Happy Thanksgiving for comics fans as we get our new comics right before a feast of turkey and other awesome food – but the end of every month for the New 52 on my pull list, something has to say goodbye. This installment will give an overview of the last six #3 issues on my pull and make the cuts down to the elite eight moving on to next month.

These two weeks included two of the wildcard picks: All-Star Western and Batman. Plus, DC’s flagship Justice League picks up speed and Aquaman gets some love from the local police force…kind of.

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

Batman
Written by Scott Snyder with art by Greg Capullo

Scott Snyder is killing it on this book, and the end of every issue makes me want to read more. The mastery of the cliffhanger here isn’t just the explosion at the end, but the revelation of information involving the Court of Owls and that they’ve been right under Batman’s nose for years. I’m really enjoying Snyder’s take on the Dark Knight here–it’s got a good balance of action and detective skills that really give a well-rounded picture of both Bruce Wayne and Batman. For some reason, though, I wasn’t as thrilled with Greg Capullo’s pencils here as I was in previous issues. It’s possible that it’s because the bulk of the book took place with Bruce Wayne and Lincoln having a conversation in a hospital room, but other than that, this was a fantastic issue.

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New 52 Pickup | Weeks 9 and 10

Each Wednesday, DC’s New 52 hits shelves and CBR Staff Writer Steve Sunu is looking for the best bang for the buck in ongoing series. Cutting half his pull list each month from the original 52 in a battle royale, Steve has already narrowed the number to just 13 books. Which titles will make it past Issue 3?

After a quick break, New 52 Pickup is back to cover two weeks’ worth of pull list books — and the cuts are starting to get tough. Last week had three quality titles, while this week features the fan pick that keeps coming back like Solomon Grundy, Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E. Also joining the pull list from the poll is Batman and the Jonah Hex/Amadeus Arkham buddy Western All-Star Western. Let’s get to it!

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

Action Comics
Written by Grant Morrison with art by Rags Morales and Gene Ha

Action Comics continues as one of my favorite books in DC’s New 52. Grant Morrison is giving the Superman mythos a face-lift for new readers and longtime fans alike, with an amazing opening sequence detailing the destruction of Krypton. While the Clark Kent sequences aren’t grabbing me nearly as much as I hoped, the Krypton mythos coming back around for the cliffhanger is slick and something I’m looking forward to reading. Rags Morales and Gene Ha continue sharing art duties, and it seems to work well. In my eyes, this is the Superman family book to beat, and it’s going to take some stiff competition from the other books to get this one off my pull list.

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New 52 Pickup | Week 9 — Issue 2 decisions!

It’s the end of the road for the second round of the New 52. This week had some major all-stars on the pull – but did they live up to their first-issue counterparts? At the end of the overviews, we’ll take a look back at the highs and lows of the month, which titles get to move on and which ones will get the ax.

Also, if you’re still interested in No. 1 issues, the new Legion: Secret Origin miniseries debuted today, and at select stores you get a replica Legion flight ring with purchase. If you’ve been confused by some of the other Legion books, this might be a good place to start.

Onward and upward!

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

All-Star Western
Written by Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray with art by Moritat and Jordi Bernet

This issue probably offered the biggest story value of the week. Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray continued their Holmes/Watson dynamic with Dr. Amadeus Arkham and Jonah Hex but also introduced some key Gotham mythos, like the Crime Bible, and added much more action. There are three pages of Jonah taking out a dozen hooded gunmen all on his own depicted in amazing, gruesome detail by Moritat. The issue has a great structure with tight pacing, and on top of the original story, readers get the start of an El Diablo co-feature drawn by Jordi Bernet that pits the character against a zombie horde. Both parts of the book are strongly written by Palmiotti and Gray, although I would have liked to see some more of the investigation dynamic we saw in the first issue. A very strong second installment.

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New 52 Pickup | Week 8

This is a great week for DC Comics fans. Not only is there another wave of second issues from the New 52, but this week also heralds the release of Batman: Arkham City and a bevy of news coming out of New York Comic Con. There weren’t new No. 1s for any miniseries, though, but that didn’t keep some quality second installments off the shelves. Let’s jump in!

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

Batman
Written by Scott Snyder with art by Greg Capullo

Scott Snyder is poised to become one of the best writers in the New 52. Batman is one of those rare Godfather-like instances in which the second installment is actually better than the first – and considering the quality of the previous issue, that’s high praise. Snyder resolves last month’s cliffhanger somewhat dismissively, but it’s more than made up for by the new mystery of The Court of Owls and Bruce’s mayoral candidate friend Lincoln March. While Nightwing gets a little panel time this issue, Snyder’s real focus is Batman. Not only does the reader get a great feel as to who Bruce Wayne is outside of Batman, the writer also focuses a bit more on the city itself, making for an excellently structured and tightly plotted issue. Greg Capullo continues to show his versatility, making for a creative team that’s really firing on all cylinders.

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New 52 Pickup | Week 7

It’s Week 2 of the No. 2s, and whether you’re big into the Bat-family or raring to go for Resurrection Man, there’s a lot on the pull list to enjoy. If you’re into other new No. 1 titles, Shade, by James Robinson and Cully Hamner, and My Greatest Adventure, by Aaron Lopresti, Kevin Maguire, Matt Ryan and Scott Kolins, arrived for a bit more variety.

This week also has your wildcard pick, Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E. Did a second issue turn the book around for me? Read on for this and more!

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

Batgirl
Written by Gail Simone with art by Ardian Syaf

Picking up right where Issue 1 left off, Gail Simone delves a little deeper into the mystery of the Mirror and his list while providing some much-needed evaluation of Batgirl’s combat skills. This installment definitely provides more focus on Batgirl as a returned hero as opposed to her life and personal relationships outside of the mask. Simone does an excellent job of driving the plot forward, giving a good amount of answers to questions from the first issue and creating a real sense of urgency with a great cliffhanger. Issue 2 also highlights Ardian Syaf’s skills with Batgirl’s acrobatics and combat prowess.

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New 52 Pickup | Week 6

We’ve passed the first round No. 1 issues for DC’s New 52, and now it’s time to get to the real meat of the stories with Issue 2. This week’s pull had six continuing titles from Round 1 with some strong contenders for the final surviving title.

Also, some might be interested in the results of the wildcard selection from last week. There was overwhelming support for Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E., so I’ll give that book another shot. I’d like to note that every book got at least a little love, with O.M.A.C. and Nightwing receiving a number of shout-outs in the comments. Expect Frankenstein to pop up later this month.

Also, I’m going to try something a little different from this month on: Each book will still get a short review, but the pull list won’t be fully evaluated until the end of the month.

Finally, two No. 1 issues for two miniseries dropped today, Huntress and Penguin: Pain and Prejudice. Both are a lot of fun and definitely deserve a look.

With that, let’s get to the six No. 2 issues on the pull this week!

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

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New 52 Pickup | Week 5 — decision time!

It’s the final week of New 52 #1s, and that means it’s time to make some decisions. None of this week’s books will be on the fence, as it’s time to figure out the 26 titles that make it to next month. But before we get to the final list, there were some fantastic comics that hit this week that really made me sad I couldn’t have more titles on my pull for next month. Let’s get to it.

For those only interested in the results, scroll down for the final standings and a big surprise.

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

All-Star Western
Written by Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti with art by Moritat

A murder mystery with Jonah Hex as Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Amadeus Arkham as Dr. Watson? Sign me up! Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti have always had a great handle on Jonah Hex, and All-Star Western really takes advantage of that experience to hook both new and longtime readers with a well-plotted first issue. Moreover, the book is set in Gotham with clear links to a lot of the Batman mythos. Moritat’s art is a great fit, giving the book an old-timey Western movie feel, and the narration from Arkham gives the book a real sense of mystery. This book hooked me in a big way, and I can’t wait for the next issue.

Status: IN

Aquaman
Written by Geoff Johns with art by Ivan Reis

This is an excellently done issue. The character of Aquaman as it stood just didn’t appeal to me, but with the New 52, Geoff Johns has once again demonstrated his ability to make everything vintage incredibly relevant for the modern age. The exposition of Aquaman’s powers as he sat down in a seafood restaurant ordering fish and chips was great, and the pointed jabs at Aquaman being “nobody’s favorite superhero” were very tongue in cheek. And you can’t say enough about the high quality of Ivan Reis’ pencils. For the first time ever, I’m interested in where this character is going. Well done, creative team!

Status: IN

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New 52 Pickup | Week 4

We’re well past the halfway point for DC’s New 52, and it’s winding down to when final cuts will be getting made to the pull list. This was a smaller week with 12 books, but it had a number of highly anticipated titles, including Batman and Wonder Woman, with a healthy helping of wild cards like Captain Atom and DC Universe Presents: Deadman. There was definitely something out there for every type of reader, but only a few books made it back onto the pull for next month.

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

Batman
Written by Scott Snyder with art by Greg Capullo

I’m a big fan of Scott Snyder’s work on American Vampire, so I had pretty high expectations for Batman, and I was not disappointed. Snyder’s storytelling style is fantastic, and he manages to set the stage for a great Batman story that draws from the existing status quo with a minimal confusion to new readers. Greg Capullo has great linework in this issue, but I was left wondering whether it’s the best fit for Snyder’s narrative. That said, I loved every moment of this issue; the cliffhanger is completely worth the price of admission for the next. As it stands, this is the Batman title to stick with and easily my pick of the week.

Status: IN

Birds of Prey
Written by Duane Swierczynski with art by Jesus Saiz

I enjoyed Duane Swiercynski’s run on Cable after X-Men: Messiah Complex finished up, and I’m a huge fan of the previous Birds of Prey series. Unfortunately, this title just doesn’t stack up to either one. As a fan, Birds will always be Black Canary and Oracle, and while Barbara Gordon does make a quick appearance, for better or worse, this is Canary and newcomer Starling’s show now. The plot just didn’t grab me, and Starling didn’t get nearly enough panel time to give me a better idea as to who she is. This might be a title that new readers find interesting, but the story and characters just didn’t work for me.

Status: OUT

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New 52 Pickup | Week 3

It’s that time again – time for 13 New 52 #1s with a whole lot of diversity in titles. Last week, DC led with some incredible starts to their relaunch lineup, and this week the publisher upped the ante significantly with even more top-notch story beginnings.

This week boasted a vast array of books, including two Bat-family titles, a new origin for the Boy of Steel, the resurrection of Resurrection Man, and medieval adventures with the Demon Knights. Let’s get to it!

Warning! Spoilers ahead!

Batman and Robin
Written by Peter J. Tomasi with art by Patrick Gleason

I have to admit that I’m a bit behind on Batman and Robin, and considering that, I wasn’t thrilled by this issue. Writer Peter J. Tomasi has the Herculean task of drawing from the mythos that makes Batman and Robin so appealing to longtime fans while also trying to start from a point that new readers can appreciate. That said, this book definitely skews to the fans of the old ongoing. If you followed Batman Incorporated, there’s also going to be a lot here for you. While I enjoy Patrick Gleason’s pencils and the threads Tomasi has set in motion, I’m not enough of a fan of the title for this to be an automatic in. Still, the setup is intriguing.

Status: ON THE FENCE

Batwoman
Written by J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman with art by J.H. Williams

Readers have been waiting a long time for this book, ever since the zero issue hit almost a year ago — and man was it ever worth the wait. If you’re unfamiliar with Batwoman and Greg Rucka and J.H. Williams’ run on Detective Comics, this book will be more difficult to get into. However, Williams continues to prove his mastery as a visual storyteller while flexing his writing muscles to excellent effect. Williams and W. Haden Blackman have picked up seamlessly from the events of the Detective run and added a cool connection to the greater DC Universe by including Bette Kane (AKA Flamebird) in the main cast. Great read, can’t wait for the next issue.

Status: IN

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New 52 Pickup | Week 2

It’s finally here: The first full week of DC’s New 52 brought 13 brand-new titles – only the tip of the iceberg as September progresses. If the quality of this week’s books is any indication of the rest of the New 52, there will be some very difficult cuts to make at the end of the month.

From now through the end of September, I’ll provide brief overviews of each book with the pull-list status at the end. With no further ado, it’s time to jump into Week 2 of the New 52! Prepare for a number of Bat-family books, the new JLI, Sgt. Rock for the modern age and more!

Warning: Spoilers ahead!

Animal Man
Written by Jeff Lemire with art by Travel Foreman

This book sets the benchmark for this week as to what a New 52 #1 should be. Jeff Lemire brings new life to Buddy Baker in an incredible story that both takes advantage of the character’s rich history and introduces new elements in the spirit of DC’s relaunch. Not only does Lemire give readers a welcome reintroduction to Animal Man with a stunning cliffhanger that will leave them wanting more, Travel Foreman’s interior pencils are gorgeous, only adding to the unique feel that Lemire gives this title. It’s a great first issue, and I can’t wait to read more. If I could read only one New 52 issue this week, this would be it.

Status: IN

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New 52 Pickup | And so it begins!

Well, it’s finally here. Flashpoint #5 has hit shelves, heralding the arrival of 52 new No. 1 issues from DC Comics over the next month. But 52 titles added to anyone’s pull list is an overwhelming amount, even when you consider that most replace series that existed before Flashpoint. What’s a fan to do?

Like many of you, I’ve loved the heroes and villains that have graced the pages of DC comics for years. My favorite character has always been Barbara Gordon, I’m a huge fan of the JSA, and I think Morrison and Quitely’s All-Star Superman is a work of art. Frankly, I couldn’t be more excited about the relaunch and its potential for telling new stories and bringing new readers into the fold. However, I’m also curious as to how many of the New 52 I’ll still be reading by the third or fourth issue.

Much like the Cylons of Battlestar Galactica, I have a plan. Throughout the next month, I’ll check out all 52 No. 1 issues, focusing on what works, what doesn’t, and what were the standout moments — in short, which books were exciting enough to lead me to pick up the next issue. After taking a close look at each of the titles, it’ll be decision time: Which books am I going to keep on my pull list for the next month?

In battle-royale, last-man-standing tradition, I plan to cut half the books from my pull list at the end of the month, and continue cutting by about half each month after that until I’m reading what I consider the best of the New 52.

“New 52 Pickup” kicks off today with the debut of Justice League. Considering its status as DC’s flagship title, and that it’s the only new series dropping this week, I’ll be devoting more space than usual to a single comic, so let’s get started!

Oh, and … warning: spoilers ahead!

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