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It’s time once again for our monthly trip through Previews looking for cool, new comics. We’ve each picked the five comics we’re most anticipating in order to create a list of the best new stuff coming out two months from now.
As usual, please feel free to play along in the comments. Tell us what we missed that you’re looking forward to or – if you’re a comics creator – mention your own stuff.
Crater XV HC (Top Shelf, $19.95): I’ve been following (and loving) the serialization of Kevin Cannon’s follow-up to Far Arden in the digital pages of Double Barrel, but I know that I’ll be picking up this hardcover collection of the further adventures of sea dog Rusty Shanks nonetheless. The Canadian space program deserves no less.
In The Days of the Mob HC (DC Comics, $39.99): To say that Kirby’s 1970s take on the organized-crime world of the 1930s is something I’ve been longing to read since I first discovered its existence would be an understatement, so I’m definitely looking forward to this deluxe reprint, complete with material that wasn’t in the original edition.
Indigo Prime: Anthropocalypse TP (Rebellion/2000AD, $24.99): John Smith’s cosmic authorities are one of comics’ most secret treasures, I think, especially when he’s paired with an artist like Edmund Bagwell, who brings a wonderful Euro-Kirby influence to the stories in this collection. Really looking forward to this one.
Relish: My Life in the Kitchen GN (First Second, $17.99): As a sucker for good autobiographical comics and also good food writing, the idea of Lucy Knisley creating a food-centric memoir — complete with recipes! — is far too good to ignore. I love that publishers like First Second are publishing work like this.
Solo Deluxe Edition HC (DC Comics, $49.99): Even though I own most of these issues from their original appearance, the oversized hardcover format is waaaay too tempting when you consider some of the material this book has up its 500+ page sleeve: Paul Pope covering Kirby! Brendan McCarthy channeling Ditko as only he could! The amazing Darwyn Cooke issue! The only thing that could make this better would be if it included work completed on follow-up issues before the plug had been pulled … But maybe that can appear in a second volume, one day…
Welcome to Food or Comics?, where every week we talk about what comics we’d buy at our local comic shop based on certain spending limits — $15 and $30 — as well as what we’d get if we had extra money or a gift card to spend on a splurge item.
If I had $15, I’d skip lunch and dig in to the overdue Choker #6 (Image, $3.99). I almost considered waiting for the trade on this one, but I know once I see the shiny object in front of me in stores I’ll want to find out the ending to Ben McCool and Ben Templesmith’s story. After that I’d get Uncanny X-Force #23 (Marvel, $3.99), which still holds the crown for my favorite current Marvel book. I was hesitant of Remender & co. going off into Otherworld despite my fascination with the realm going back to my Excalibur days, but I’m being rewarded with good story for my allegiance. The only thing it’s missing is an appendix reminding me of older stories that he references here. Last up would be a two-fer with Spaceman #5 (DC/Vertigo, $2.99) and Walking Dead #95 (Image, $2.99). I’ve talked about both at length here, and they continue to buffet me with greatness.
If I had $30, I’d first snag Daredevil #10 (Marvel, $2.99) to see more of Paolo Rivera’s work over the solid storytelling by Mark Waid. Then, I’d rub my eyes to make sure I’m not seeing things and pick-up the 5+ year delayed book Sharknife, Vol. 2 (Oni, $11.99). I’ve been a big fan of Corey’s work back when he was doing inspired Mega Man rip-offs, and the chance that I’ll finally see this sequel is exciting and heartbreaking. I hope the quality of the book inside is enough to stave off my feelings about the severe delay the book had.
And for splurging, I’d spend my CBR paycheck on Gone To Amerikay (DC/Vertigo, $24.99). This book is at the intersection of three reasons I’d buy it: Colleen Doran, Derek McCulloch and historical Irish narratives. I’d hold McCulloch’s Stagger Lee up to any graphic novel of the past decade in terms of skill and potency, so to see him pair that with Colleen Doran’s crafty linework bears my immediate attention.
It’s time once again for our monthly trip through Previews looking for cool, new comics. As usual, we’re focusing on graphic novels, collected volumes and first issues so that we don’t have to come up with a new way to say, “Batwoman is still awesome!” every month. And we’ll continue letting Tom and Carla do the heavy lifting in regards to DC and Marvel’s solicitations.
One cool change this month and for the foreseeable future: I’m joined by Graeme McMillan who’ll also be pointing out his favorites.
Finally, please feel free to play along in the comments. Tell us what we missed that you’re looking forward to or – if you’re a comics creator – mention your own stuff.
The Art of Daniel Clowes: Modern Cartoonist – I admit, I tend to run hot and cold on Clowes’ output, but I’m a sucker for coffee-table career retrospectives, so the idea of taking 224 pages to look back at his career to date (with, of course, the traditional little-seen artwork and commentary) seems like a must-look at the very least. [Graeme]
Rachel Rising, Volume 1: The Shadow of Death – Terry Moore’s latest series gets its first collection and I love the premise of a woman’s waking up in a shallow grave with no memory of how she got there and needing to figure out who tried to kill to her. [Michael]
A project that I recently became aware of is Moon Girl, written by Tony Trov and Johnny Zito with art by The Rahzzah. Moon Girl (originally created back in the 1940s for EC Comics by Max Gaines, Gardner Fox and Sheldon Moldoff) was relaunched by Trov and Zito back in 2010 (after the property entered the public domain) via Comixology. More recently the Moon Girl has begun being published by Red 5 Comics–and Moon Girl 2 (of a five-issue miniseries) is slated to come out this Wednesday. As detailed by CBR back in early 2010: “Masked vigilantes wage a psychotic war against 1950’s bourgeois; it’s The Dark Knight meets Mad Men. Clare is a Russian Princess happily exiled to New York. When enemies from the past threaten her new life, the repressed Warrior Queen fights back. In the media her secret, nocturnal adventures are attributed to a mysterious hero; Moon Girl.” To get some perspective on the uniquely named artist‘s role in creating the series, we recently did an email interview.
Tim O’Shea: Your name is rather unique, what’s the backstory on your name?
The Rahzzah: Nothing interesting. It’s a hold-over from my “band days” where we all had nicknames. It began as Razz Matazz, got shortened to Razza. Then I had a lady friend who pronounced it “Rahzzah” and I liked that so I just started spelling it phonetically (plus I like the symmetry of it). And Rahzzah it stayed for a good long while, until Johnny Zito came along and decided it wasn’t good enough as-is and threw a “The” in front of it for some reason.
Welcome to What Are You Reading?, where we talk about what comics and other stuff we’ve been reading lately.
Today’s special guest is Joe Keatinge, writer and co-creator of the upcoming Image comic Brutal with Frank Cho. He’s also the writer of the final “Twisted Savage Dragon Funnies” installment in April’s Savage Dragon #171, drawn by Savage Dragon creator Erik Larsen, Billy Dogma’s Dean Haspiel, Nikolai Dante’s Simon Fraser, Parade (With Fireworks)’s Mike Cavallaro, The Transmigration of Ultra Lad’s Joe Infurnari, Fahrenheit 451: The Authorized Adaptation’s Tim Hamilton and Olympians’ George O’Connor. He’s also executive editor of the PopGun anthology, he’s got an ongoing series coming soon that he can’t say anything else about and with his fellow studio members at Tranquility Base, regularly beats up on 13 year olds at laser tag.
To see what Joe and the Robot 6 crew have been reading lately, click below.
Broadway | The fall that seriously injured an actor Monday night in the musical Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark was the result of human error, the Actors’ Equity Association said. Christopher Tierney, the 31-year-old aerialist who doubles for Spider-Man and two villains, remains in serious but stable condition after the cable to his safety harnesses snapped, sending him tumbling as far as 30 feet into the orchestra pit. As we reported on Tuesday, today’s matinee has been canceled while the show enacts additional safety measures. However, tonight’s performance will go on as scheduled.
Amid criticism from Broadway actors and calls for the plug to be pulled on the $65-million production — Tierney is the fourth Spider-Man performer to be injured — director Julie Taymor issued a statement, calling the accident “heartbreaking”: “I am so thankful that Chris is going to be alright and is in great spirits. Nothing is more important than the safety of our Spider-Man family and we’ll continue to do everything in our power to protect the cast and crew.” Meanwhile, the New York Post — home to theater columnist Michael Riedel, who’s gleefully chronicled the musical’s many setbacks — quotes one unnamed investor as saying, “We should cut our losses and just get out,” while another worries about potential lawsuits. The Daily Beast provides a timeline of the delay-plagued production, while Mark Evanier offers commentary. [Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark]
Welcome once again to Food or Comics?, where every week we talk about what comics we’d buy based on certain spending limits — $15, $30 to spend and if we had extra money to spend on what we call the “Splurge” item. Check out Diamond’s release list for this week if you’d like to play along in our comments section.
If I had $15:
There are a lot of great periodicals coming out this week, so I’d have some hard choices to make. With only $15, I’d concentrate first on those with the cheapest prices: the first issue of Dark Horse’s new Mighty Samson ($3.50), Atomic Robo and the Deadly Art of Science #2 ($3.50), and Mouse Guard: Black Axe #1 ($3.50). I’m already a huge fan of both Atomic Robo and Mouse Guard and – based on its concept and vague memories of stories I read as a kid – hope to become one of Mighty Samson too. I’d spend the last of my money on Northern Guard #1, because I’m a sucker for Canadian superheroes.
If I had $30:
I’d add Doc Macabre #1 ($3.99), John Byrne’s Next Men #1 ($3.99), and Strange Tales 2 #3 ($4.99). “Doc Macabre” is an awesome name and I love Steve Niles’ pulp stuff, I’ve been waiting 16 years for that Next Men issue, and the Strange Tales book has a Kate Beaton story in which the Avengers go to a carnival. I’d pay five bucks just for Beaton’s deal, but it’s also got a Thing tale by Harvey Pekar (and yes, Harvey Pekar is in the story).
Now that I have an iPad, I have been paying more attention to digital comics releases, particularly to comiXology’s weekly e-mail blast. I sampled some of their recent offerings and found them to be a mixed bag—three very good single issues and a graphic novel that was kind of mediocre. The lower price made digital a good deal for all of these, and with comiXology’s web app, they are available to anyone with a browser and a few dollars.
The Royal Historian of Oz #1 Andy Hirsch’s expressive art really lights up this story of an L. Frank Baum wannabe who makes it to the real Land of Oz—and steals a bunch of their stuff. His hapless son, who has barely been keeping things together, is less than thrilled to learn that his house is now home to an assortment of (mostly living) Oz artifacts, and the ruler of Oz isn’t happy with the situation either. Writer Tommy Kovac makes the characters grounded and convincing despite the fantastic circumstances, and Hirsch does a great job of bringing Baum’s lesser-known creations to life, filling the panels with quirky details. It’s in glorious black and white, with a bit of an underground comics vibe, and at 99 cents (a penny less than the print edition!), it’s a solid bargain.
Box 13 writer David Gallaher sent word over the weekend that Box 13, the digital comic he created with artist Steve Ellis, is headed to the printed page, courtesy of Red 5 Comics.
Based on a syndicated radio series, Box 13 “is the story of newspaperman-turned-mystery novelist Dan Holliday, who kind of hires himself out as a detective to get ideas for his stories,” Gallaher told me last October. “It was a high-noir, high-adventure series, but it was certainly a product of its time. Our re-imagining of the series incorporates many of the noir elements of the original serial, but with a bunch of John Frankenheimer, Patrick McGoohan, Alex Toth, and Peter O’Donnell added to the mix. There is gunplay, conspiracy, romance, psychological drama, train chases, motorcycle chases, and danger! But, at its heart, it’s a story about rediscovering your place in the world after everything in your life changes forever.”
Originally published by Comixology on their iPhone application and website, the graphic novel will cost $13 and is due in May. The complete solicitation text can be found after the jump.
Welcome to What Are You Reading Our guest this week is the blogger and critic Noah Berlatsky.
Click on the link to find out what Noah and the rest of us are currently reading. And don’t forget to tell us what you’re reading too in the comments section.
The nominees for the 2009 Joe Shuster Awards, which honor Canadian comics creators, were announced today. The five-year-old awards program is named after Joe Shuster, co-creator of Superman. The list of nominees this year includes Darwyn Cooke, J. Torres, Karl Kerschl, Dave Sim, Kathryn & Stuart Immonen, Faith Erin Hicks and Seth, among many others.
Check out the full list of nominees in the press release after the jump.
Editor’s Note: With Valentine’s Day coming up next Saturday, we’ve declared this the week of Robot Love. And to kick things off, we’ve resurrected one of our favorite features, I ♥ Comics, where we ask comics creators, bloggers, retailers and fans to discuss the things they love about the medium.
Our first guest contributor this week is Scott Wegener, the artist on Atomic Robo, which is written by Brian Clevinger and published by Red 5 Comics. The first issue of the third volume, Atomic Robo and the Shadow From Beyond Time, is in this month’s Previews.
by Scott Wegener
Ask a guy like me why I love comics and the answer is likely to be a verbatim repetition of my answer to the other question people are constantly asking me –“Why do you love oral surgery?” I love comics because they are necessary, because they promote good overall health, and because I really enjoy the way my gums throb after a good issue of All Star What’s-His-Face.
Seriously, it’s much easier for me to come up with an essay about why I hate comics. I don’t know if that’s because there really is a lot wrong with the industry or if it’s just always easier to criticize than it is to praise? I won’t bore you with a list of things that drive me nuts about comics -we’ve already done that on Atomic-Robo.com. It’s enough to say that I expend more time than it’s worth taking a verbal dump on comic book culture.
And yet there came a time just a few short years ago when I took a hard look at my life and decided that I didn’t like where it was going. And when I tried to figure out what it was that I really loved in life, I found the answer on my mental hard drive under >Geek/Adventure/Comic Books. And so I stopped doing what I was doing, and started doing what I’m doing now.
Looking back on it all, I guess I’d always known that I loved comics, but the 1990’s really jaded me. “Oh Christ,” I can here you thinking. “Another jaded Thirty-Something with a ‘boo-hoo 1997 killed comics’ ax to grind.” Well just keep your pants on for about two paragraphs so I can get it off my chest, and then I promise we’ll roll on to the unicorns and rainbows.