It’s always fun to see what’s coming up in the comic book world, ain’t it?Â And this month, per request, I’ll include some pictures!Â Avert your eyes!
Let’s dig into this month’s Previews, the cover of which features an action figure of “Barbara Gordon-crippling Joker.”Â What, no dog-collared Jim Gordon or half-undressed librarian with a bullet in her spine, DC?Â Man, what am I going to buy my daughters for Christmas?Â We haven’t even gotten into the book and I’m already offended.Â Sheesh, DC.Â Who thought this was a good idea?
Page 1, by the way: Beowulf looks awful, doesn’t it?Â I mean, really awful.Â We’ll see.
Yet another B.P.R.D. mini-series kicks off on page 24 (9 January).Â Mignola and Dysart write, Azaceta draws.Â It looks good, but I will of course be waiting for the trade.
I guess Evil Dead #1 (page 29; 2 January)Â could be interesting, but I’m always a bit wary of stuff like this.Â I mean, what’s the point?Â It’s called an “expansion” on the original movie, but how much better could it be?Â I’m not a big fan of the franchise anyway (I know – shocking!), so I’m not really the audience, but will this appeal to hard core Evil Dead fans?
There’s another Conan trade on page 31 (28 March).Â I love reading this book in trade paperbacks.
My Name is Bruce (page 32) is available NOW.Â What?Â That’s weird.Â Why is it in Previews?Â Also: perhaps it’s not surprising, given my remarks about Evil Dead,Â that theÂ long-term appeal of Bruce Campbell eludes me.Â He’s funny in small doses, but gets annoying after a while.Â But that’s just me.Â I’m just puzzled how you order this.Â Do you order it, and they come back saying “Go buy it NOW, fanboy!”?
I probably won’t buy Al Capp’s Complete Shmoo (page 39; 19 March), but I must say that I really love the Shmoo.Â Mostly because of early 1980s cartoons.Â I haven’t read the original comics.Â Sacrilege!
The trade of Apocalypse Nerd is solicited on page 40 (26 March).Â I read one issue of this book (#4, I think), and hated it.Â It wasn’t particularly funny, nor terribly compelling.Â Am I missing something?Â Peter Bagge fans, help me!
On page 41, Empowered volume 3 is offered (12 March).Â Devon Sanders is quoted, saying it may be the best graphic novel he’s read all year.Â Hmmm.Â Volume 1 was mildly entertaining, but “the best”?Â Not really.Â Warren is a fine artist, and the book is amusing.Â It just seemed a bit obvious as a parody.Â I could be wrong, though.Â Maybe it really is the best graphic novel of the year.
Is DC going to market Teen Titans: Year One (page 62; 2 January) heavily to kids, or just to aging geeks like me?Â Because I don’t think I can read a comic that has “K-Flash” responding to an instant message with “Hey Robin, yt?”Â Yes, I’m a crotchety old man.Â I probably wouldn’t buy this anyway, but still, let’s hope DC tries to push it on kids.
I like how Green Arrow/Black Canary #4 (page 70; 9 January) has yet ANOTHER tragedy in the lives of Ollie and/or Dinah.Â If I were Winick, I would just write each issue with an even bigger tragedy, until he manages to infect every person on the planet with the plague.Â That would be the best-selling comic series EVER!
The solicit text for Gotham Underground #4Â (page 71; 23Â January)Â asks the provocative question: “Did Zsasz really kill Batman?”Â I’m going to go waaaaay out on a limb here and say “No.”Â Yes, I’m very bold.
I like Don Kramer’s work on Detective, but it will be interesting to see Dustin Nguyen’s work on the book (page 73; 2 January).Â That is, if he lasts.Â Who knows anymore?
It’s certainly nice that DC is re-re-re-re-releasing the first Justice League International trade paperback (I think that’s as many times as they’ve printed it in the past) as a fancy hardcover (for 25 bucks! on page 92), but wouldn’t it be nice if they released the rest of the Giffen/DeMatties run?Â I mean, the second trade is way out of print, I think, and no others exist.Â I mean, if this signals that the rest are coming, then fine.Â But a 25-dollar hardcover probably won’t sell well, especially for something that’s available elsewhere.Â DC: Masters of Marketing!
I think our Dread Lord and Master brought this up, but on page 94, Diana Prince: Wonder Woman volume 1 is solicited.Â O’Neil, Sekowsky, and Giordano!Â Sounds good to me!
Welcome to Tranquility is not solicited in this edition.Â That worries me.Â Is the book dead?Â Gail, where are you to answer my questions????
I guess I have to go into seclusion once the final issue of Y: The Last Man comes out (page 118; 2 January).Â I buy it in trades, so I have to wait a while to find out what happens.
Joe Casey might be able to make Youngblood work (page 136; 9 January).Â And no Rob Liefeld involvement!Â Gold!
I like Invincible (page 139; 23 January) a lot, but one thing always makes me laugh: Robert Kirkman likes the blood, doesn’t he?Â Does he tell Ottley: “Okay, Mark is fighting Cecil Stedman in this one.Â Â Make sure to bleed the little fucker”?Â That would be cool.
The text for the Jack Staff Special (page 140; 16 January) claims that the book is “now monthly.”Â I’m not a big fan of Grist, but apparently heÂ has trouble putting out an issue of this every two years.Â AndÂ now it’s “monthly”?Â How’s that goingÂ to work?
Shark-Man #1 is offered on page 144 (3 January).Â Â Considering I ownÂ two issues of this, theÂ greatest comic ever to be conceived by mortal man, I wonder: is this a reprint of the first issue, allowing people who foolishly passed it by the first time to catch up, or is a continuation of the series, just with a #1 designation because it’s “officially” with Image now?Â It seems like it’s the first issue, just reprinted, but the text is vague enough that it might not be.Â It shouldn’t matter, because it’s SHARK-MAN!!!!!!Â Kneel before Shark-Man, foolish peons!
Essential Noble Causes (whoops, sorry, that’s Noble Causes Archive) isÂ offered on page 146, and it collects the early mini-series and the first 12 issues of the ongoing.Â This is a great book, so if you’ve missed the older stuff, pick this up.Â It’s in black-and-white, but it’s 600 pages for 20 bucks.Â Not bad at all!
Whenever I see Hawaiian Dick solicited (page 154; 23 January), I chuckle.Â Please, B. Clay Moore, prove that you can do this book monthly!
Spawn #178 actually soundsÂ … interesting (page 160; 27Â February).Â I know, how kooky is that?Â Sam and Twitch investigate a series of murders by an amnesiac vampire.Â That’s a pretty cool idea.Â And it’s a single issue story!
Page 164 hasÂ “The Godfather Action Figure.”Â Really, Todd?Â “Action”?
That Witchblade Takeru Manga on page 174 really needs to be seen to be believed.Â The picture accompanying the text doesn’t do it justice.
Hunter-Killer is offered in trade paperback on page 175.Â Boy, that book really fell off the map, didn’t it?Â I remember getting the zero issue, and everyone was buzzing about it, but it just disappeared.Â Did anyone read all of it?
Ultimate Spider-Man #118 (page 10)Â gives us “Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends.”Â I’m sure this has been done before, right?Â Because if it hasn’t, I’m amazed it’s taken this long.
So, Ultimates 3 (page 12)Â is only five issues long?Â What the hell?Â I mean, I’m not buying it anyway, but what’s the deal with that?
David Lapham is writingÂ a “Spider-Man in his early years” mini-series (page 18).Â Why we need another “Spider-Man in his early years” mini-series is not something I’m going to worry about.Â Tony Harris does the art.Â Remember when Harris quit Starman because he couldn’t do a monthly book?Â And now he’s doing a somewhat regular series and has time to do a mini-series.Â What happened?
Hey, look!Â Captain America has a new costume (page 24)!Â I wonder if anyone in the comics blogaxy has noticed.
Michael Turner may have topped even himself with that awful cover to Fantastic Four #553 (page 30).Â Holy crap, Sue looks awful.Â I know she’s the “future Sue,” but still.Â Yuck.
Speaking of awful covers, Moon Knight #14 (page 47)Â features a really horrible one.Â Why are his hands so big?
The Young Avengers mini-series might be good (page 53), especially because Brubaker is writing it.Â But what happened to the ongoing series?Â Is it officially dead?
Beyond! finally gets a trade paperback (page 97).Â The hardcover has been out for, what, six months?Â Longer?Â I’ve been interested in getting this.Â Can anyone give it an endorsement?
Walt Simonson’s run on Thor gets a fifth volume on page 106.Â Marvel finally figured out that volumes 2 and 3 are out of print and promises new printings.Â Good job, Marvel!Â Way to be on the ball there!
Now it’s time to sojourn into the back of the book.Â Who knows what evil lurks there?
Let’sÂ go straight to Avatar, which is always fun to look at.Â Warren Ellis, it seems, has taken over the company, and on page 215, for 2 dollars, you can check outÂ a preview of his latest book, Gravel.Â William Gravel, the “combat magician” from the Strange Kiss/Strange Killings mini-series, is starring in an ongoing.Â Yes, it’s a typical Ellis protagonist, which may or may not be for you,Â but if you like his typical protagonist, this is one of his better examples of it.Â And it’s only 2 dollars for a quick look to see if it suits your fancy or not.
I think I’ll let the Red Sonja statue on page 244 speak for itself:
Um, what’s beneath the chain mail bottom?Â Can you tilt it just right and get a nice glimpse of, you know?Â I wouldn’t put it past the sculptor.
Desperado solicits the trade paperback of The Atheist on page 252.Â I know they managed to solicit the fourth issue, but considering how long it’s been since an issue shipped, shouldn’t they make sure every issue is actually out before jumping to the trade?
Devil’s Due has a Voltron Omnibus on page 256 for 50 dollars.Â Voltron?
Now, I just read my first issue of Hack/Slash and thought it was pretty good.Â Then, I see the solicit text for issue #8 (page 257): “Vlad and Cassie are still entrenched in the mystery of the all-girl school murders!Â While they are trying to stop the slasher that’s killing nubile college women, they’re forced to take part in bikini parties, all night tickle fests and sorority sleepovers!Â It’s hell on earth!”Â I really, really, really, really hope this is meant to be a joke.Â That can’t be serious, can it?
I’m telling you, check out G. I. Joe: America’s Elite (page 261).Â It’s a cool comic book.
You know, the last time Drawn & Quarterly offered Wimbledon Green, I ordered it.Â It never showed up.Â Now they’re offering it again (page 270).Â I should just go through Amazon, shouldn’t I?
First Second re-offers Laika (page 275), which I neglected to mention the last time it was solicited.Â It sounds pretty cool.Â Someone here was going to get it.Â Is it any good?
Ashley Wood has a new comic, Duo Stars, on page 285 from IDW.Â It sounds suitably wacky – illegal drag racing carsÂ are actually robots.Â Yes, it sounds vaguely familiar, but Wood will probably make it, you know, surreal.
If you missed Scott Pilgrim volume 1, Oni re-offers it on page 298.Â I just point it out because it sounds like something I would hate, so I avoid it so I don’t have to badmouth it.Â But it gets good press!
Speaking of Oni, My Inner Bimbo #5 is solicited on page 298, even though issue #2 hasn’t come out yet.Â That’s not what bothers me, though.Â It’s by Sam Kieth and Josh Hagler.Â I don’t know who Hagler is, but I wonder what’s wrong with Kieth that this is not only a year late, but that he can’t even finish it.Â What the heck?
Someone recently badmouthed Whiteout on this here very blog (it was a comment, and I can’t remember who it was), but don’t listen to them!Â If you haven’t read Greg Rucka and Steve Lieber’s two excellent mini-series yet and want to before the movie comes out (which you’re going to see, because Kate Beckinsale is hawt!), check them out on page 302.
I have no idea if Andrea D, a new comic from Praxis Comics (page 307), is any good (I suspect not), but I love the fact that she’s an “ex-Special Forces soldier” who drives around on a motorcycle with ripped denim shorts crawling up her ass and a torn shirt that shows off the bottom of her breasts.Â That’s certainly how most people go into dangerous neighborhoods!
You should probably buy Nexus #100 (page 310), or the Dude may come to your house and act weird.Â Don’t think he won’t!
Sparkplug Comic Books has Reich #1 (page 311), which sounds rather interesting.Â It’s the story of Wilhelm Reich, who claimed to have discovered a “palpable sexual energy” and was hounded out of pre-World War II Europe.Â He came to America, which is, of course, much more encouraging of weird sexual things.Â Or not, and the government here started bugging him as well.Â Sounds neat.
There are two big Asterix Omnibuses (Omnibi?) on page 312 from Sterling Publishing.Â Asterix is, of course, quite awesome.Â I read these comics when I was but a lad in Germany.Â What fun comics.
Che: A Graphic Biography is offered on page 326 from Verso Books.Â It claims to be “extensively researched.”Â I don’t really have an opinion on Guevara, but how much do you want to bet that thisÂ book doesn’t mentionÂ the fact that he killed a lot of people ratherÂ mercilessly?
There’s a newÂ Gamekeeper series from Virgin on page 328, and unlike the second 7 Brothers series, which is being written by Ben Raab, Jeff Parker takes over for Andy Diggle.Â SoÂ it will probably be pretty cool.
Wildcard Ink brings us Gumby volume 1, which is a goofy little fun comic.Â It’s not great, but it isÂ somewhat bizarre.Â Really.Â Check it out!
How can you top Gumby?Â You can’t!Â So let’s stop here.Â Have fun digging into the goodness that is Previews.Â Don’t let DC and Marvel dictate what you buy!
To sum up: Buy what you like, but watch out for stuff like this!Â
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