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Flippin’ through Previews – February 2009

by  in Comic News Comment
Flippin’ through <i>Previews</i> – February 2009

You know, Greg Hatcher claims he can’t find anything worthy from the Big Four in this month’s Previews. Let’s see if we can prove him wrong, as we take a look at issue #245 (I liked the volume-number format better, just so you know), the one with a drooling alien on the cover!

See?

Dark Horse:

On page 33, our friends from the Northwest offer the first volume of Tim Truman’s Conan the Cimmerian (volume 7 of the series). They’re offering the softcover (24 June) and hardcover (3 June) for the same price. Why would anyone buy the softcover? That’s odd.

As you know, I love Rex Mundi, and I’m always happy to see a new issue solicited (page 49; 15 April). But why on earth would the solicitation text spoil a big plot point? When I see that, I have to think the death alluded to will not stick. How sad that I’m such a cynical comic book reader that I think that. Bad form, Dark Horse, by the way.

DC:

You know what disgusts me? That the Big Two publish shit like all the one-shots “spinning out of the events” of their big events. Final Crisis pissed me off partly because I didn’t feel like reading all the spin-offs (even the ones the God Of All Comics wrote), yet they became somewhat important in the reading of the main story. Jesus, DC, just let Morrison tell his story in the pages of Final Crisis and let the spin-offs tell their own story. So now they’re doing it again, with “The Battle for the Cowl,” which has three one-shots coming out of it (pages 67-69), plus the Azrael and Oracle mini-series (page 70). Blech. What a crock of shit.

Boy, thank God Barry Allen is back (page 77; 1 April). I couldn’t sleep at night without him.

The Ryan Benjamin cover of Dead Romeo (page 79; 1 April) actually looks … good. After making my eyes bleed with his art on that fill-in issue of Batman (#675, I believe), I never thought I’d say that about Benjamin. The interiors could suck, of course, but the cover is pretty keen.

Page 84: “Titans Tower has mysteriously come to life to attack the Teen Titans!” Oh, comics. Why do I love you when you do things like this to me? (1 April.)

Mike Grell returns to Warlord (page 87; 8 April). Unfortunately, he’s not drawing it, but still – it might be worth a look.

I don’t want to buy the JLA Deluxe Edition volume 2 on page 91 (24 June), because I already own most of the issues, but then DC drops in the JLA/WildC.A.T.s crossover that I’ve never read. Damn you, DC!!!!!

There’s a Static collection on page 93 (27 May). I’ve never read Static, so maybe this is the time to do so.

On page 106, you can get a trade of Point Blank, Ed Brubaker’s “sequel” to Sleeper (6 May). It’s a wonderful comic, full of weird twists and turns, and it’s beautifully illustrated by Colin Wilson. Apparently, DC is re-releasing Sleeper in trades (maybe a 24-issue Absolute edition?), so this is a fine place to start.

Speaking of Absolute editions, Promethea gets the treatment on the same page (30 September). 99 dollars is kind of steep, especially as it’s the first of three for the series.

Man, a Fables/Jack of Fables/The Literals crossover (page 112; 15, 22, and 29 April). It will probably be great, but man, buying all those issues is going to suck.

Preacher gets a hardcover trade for the first time on page 117 (24 June). They can put Preacher in hardcover, but there’s no market for more Hitman trades? Really?

Page 119: SSSSSSEEEEEEAAAAAAGGGGGGUUUUUUYYYYYYY!!!!!! (1 April.) You know, even though I don’t love the original series, it’s still an interesting read. And if writing crap like, you know, some of the stuff he’s written recently allows G-Mozz to also write weird stuff like this, I’ll take it.

Uncle freakin’ Sam gets a hardcover edition on page 121 (10 June). This isn’t bad, actually. I’m not sure if it’s worth 20 bucks, but it’s pretty neat. Well, from what I remember. It’s been a while since I’ve read it.

Image:

Ivan Brandon and Nic Klein have a new book on page 140 called Viking (1 April). Hmmm, that reminds me of some other comic … I guess Vikings are the new ninjas (or robots, or monkeys, or vampires …).

I don’t know if Pherone (page 146; 29 April) is any good or not, especially as it treads familiar ground (a femme fatale rediscovering her troubled past), but it looks freakin’ cool.

Page 151, 22 April: Jeph Loeb. Rob Liefeld. Smash! Bwah-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!!!!! (Oh, and Bruce Banner’s lawyers are on line one.)

Jesus, I’m tempted to get Moby Dick, the Classics Illustrated version, on page 153 (8 April). Why? Two words: “Bill” and “Sienkiewicz.”

Marvel:

What’s the deal with Jean Grey’s hair (page 7)?

Ultimate Spider-Man comes to an end (page 15). I can’t believe Marvel won’t relaunch this with a new #1. They’re not killing the entire Ultimate line, are they? (They should kill all of it except this title, which is quite good.)

So Daredevil Noir shows up on page 17 with this text: “The latest addition to Marvel’s red-hot Noir line …” So is this a new Marvel imprint (note Wolverine Noir on the following page)? I thought it was a couple of mini-series. Are we going to see Thor Noir soon? Black Panther Noir? Power Pack Noir? (That would be pretty awesome, come to think of it.)

I noticed this on several Marvel titles: “Wolverine Art Appreciation Variant” cover. What the hell is that? Why does it show up on titles like Agents of Atlas and Ms. Marvel? And why is there none for, say, Wolverine: Origins?

The text for Spider-Woman #1 (page 35) reads: “… she rediscovers her life in a world she did not make.” That’s a stupid line. It didn’t make sense when it was used with Howard the Duck, but at least that was a satirical comic. What the hell does that even mean, Marvel?

The text for Ghost Rider #34 (page 41) claims that the Highwayman shows up. If it’s this guy, that would be awesome. I suspect it’s not, though.

Um, Marvel? Comics don’t have “directors” (Fantastic Force, page 43). I’m just looking out for you!

It really bothers me when Marvel solicits a comic without telling us who the artist is (All-New Savage She-Hulk, page 45). What the hell, Marvel?

The Marvel Assistant-Sized Spectacular (page 51) sounds like goofy fun … but in the age of the Internet, is anyone really an obscure character?

Exiles #1 (page 54): Hey, the last two series didn’t last … but this one is sure to!

So … much … goofy … armor … by … Greg … Land …

(And I’m sure I’m not imagining this, because it’s a Greg Land cover, but check out the composition. The two ladies at the bottom have their butts together and their backs making a V-shape. The lady in between them is snaking through the space. That’s creepy, isn’t it? I’m not thinking too much about it, am I?)

Yes, it’s time for yet another Wolverine ongoing title (page 65). Sure, it’s written by Jason Aaron, but … really? That’s four, right? Plus all the specials Marvel releases every month! Sheesh. Hugh Jackman isn’t that sexy, is he?

I think I got bonked on the head and, like the Connecticut Yankee, have somehow traveled back in time. How else do you explain that it’s suddenly 1993?

Robert Kirkman has a new MAX series on page 73. How will that affect his “no late books” policy for the dozen he writes for Image? Still, with art by Cory Walker, The Destroyer might be worth a look.

Okay, so these Minimates of Wolverine and friends are weird enough (page 79), but is the Blob carrying … a Thermos?

Thank God Marvel has FINALLY brought out a deluxe hardcover of Todd McFarlane’s Torment. Just so you know, the text reminds us that it’s “a terrifying, action-packed epic that made – and continues to make – comics history!” That’s correct, you know.

The Joe Kelly run on Deadpool gets a second trade on page 109. It’s 30 bucks, but it’s a good chunk of comics. I didn’t realize they had brought out a first trade. Maybe they’ll eventually get around to a third trade with issue #11 in it.

There’s a second Essential Dazzler volume on page 117. I might have to get this, even though I own the issues of her solo series. It includes the Dazzler graphic novel, which I can’t find anywhere. And it has a bitchin’ cover by Joe Jusko!

And so we move to the back of the book. Join me, won’t you?

Adhouse Books has a collection of stories by Mike Dawson called Ace-Face: The Mod with the Metal Arms (page 196). I didn’t buy Dawson’s Freddie & Me, but read good things about it, and Our Dread Lord & Master liked Project Superior, whence this character sprang, so this might be good.

There’s a second trade of Rex Libris on page 198 from Amaze Ink/Slave Labor. It claims to collect issues #6-12, but I do hope that’s a misprint, as the series ended with issue #13. This is, of course, more awesome than should be allowed in a comic, so I encourage you to pick it up!

On page 203, there’s a solicit for Walled In from Ape Entertainment. It sounds a bit intriguing, but what I’m amused by is that it’s the origin story of the star of an upcoming feature film, “starring Mischa Barton.” Is Ms. Barton that big a draw that we’re using her presence in the movie to sell it? I’m just wondering.

Warren Ellis continues to crank out stuff for Avatar, in this case Ignition City on page 213, which takes place in a bizarre 1956 in which space pilots wander the Earth. It’s drawn by Gianluca Pagliarani, and it sounds like it has the same steampunk vibe of Aetheric Mechanics, so I’m in!

On page 224, Boom! Studios pisses me off. I’m certainly glad that Mr. Stuffins is finally relaunching, but they’ve completely redone issue #1, with brand-new art, even. I guess I have to buy it. Damn you, Chip Mosher! Boom! also has Irredeemable by Mark Waid, in which a superhero becomes a supervillain. I suppose if anyone can pull this off, it’s Waid (Empire is an underrated gem), but it seems a bit overdone, doesn’t it?

Let’s take a break to talk about the ad on page 236. It’s of the Black Widow, done in a distinctive manga style. That’s cool and all, but the text reads, “The deadly (and delicious) Black Widow wears a skin-tight bodysuit that would only be possible in the world of anime and manga.” Exsqueeze me? Have any of the solicitation text-writers (I want that job!) read a Marvel comic starring the Black Widow? Ever?

All right, moving on. Dynamite jumps into the Dracula pool with The Complete Dracula #1, retelling the story using the original novel. This is after last month’s Previews had a retelling of the book with Ben Templesmith art. What’s going on? It’s not a significant anniversary of the book’s publication (112 years), so what’s up?

On the top of page 287, Moonstone has Skull & Bones in trade. This is a mini-series by Ed Hannigan that DC originally published back in the early 1990s. Remember it? Is it any good, those of you who do remember it?

Oni offers a trade of My Inner Bimbo by Sam Kieth on page 288. This is a really weird mini-series. I have a feeling it’s brilliant, but I need to re-read it. For 15 bucks, however, it’s definitely worth a look.

I feel bad because I haven’t reviewed Chronicles of Some Made yet and now it’s on page 294 from Passenger Pigeon Press. Felix Tannenbaum was nice enough to send it to me, and I’ll definitely review it soon. It’s a strange little love story starring robots. It’s quite sweet.

A new Atomic Robo series! On page 296 from Red 5 Comics! Just buy it already, will you?

Simon & Schuster gives us T-Minus: The Race to the Moon on page 297. It’s written by science aficianado Jim Ottaviani and features at least some art by Zander Cannon. It’s sure to be cool, man!

Some people named Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill are bringing out something called The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen on page 304 from Top Shelf. I might have to give these two rookie creators a look.

And so, with that shout-out for the neophytes, we end our journey through this month’s Previews. Other Greg may not have found anything good from the big boys, but that doesn’t mean we can’t look for nuggets of comics goodness, right?

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