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 start things off with Hawkeye #1 (Marvel, $2.99). David Aja’s built up a great track record from his run on Iron Fist to his various one-off issues in and around the Marvel Universe, so seeing him re-team withIron Fist co-writer Matt Fraction is something special. Without creators like these I’d probably balk at a Hawkeye series, but they make this a must-buy. After that I’d get another first issue, Image’s Harvest #1 (Image, $3.50). AJ Lieberman’s quietly written a number of great stories, and this one seems pretty inventive. I might’ve waited for the trade on this, but newcomer Colin Lorimer’s art on it makes me think he’s going to be a big deal and I need to know about it. For the bronze in my $15 pile, it’s Avengers Vs. X-Men #9 (Marvel, $3.99). This week, Jason Aaron and Andy Kubert take point, re-teaming from their great but under-appreciated Astonishing Wolverine and Spider-Man series from a while back. Lastly, I’d get Daredevil #16 (Marvel, $2.99) because Waid is bringing his A-game, and the recent addition of Chris Samnee only makes it even more impressive. The previews for this issue shows guest appearances by Ant-Man, Doctor Strange and Iron Man, so it’ll be interesting to see how Waid factors them into Matt’s world.
If I had $30, I’d get Thief of Thieves #7 (Image, $2.99), which is becoming one of my favorite Image books and Nick Spencer’s finest at the moment. Having Shawn Martinbrough draw it only helps. After that, I’d get Earth 2 #4 (DC, $2.99). James Robinson is really living up to the “New 52” moniker by giving us one of the most imaginative and different takes on the DCU, and Nicola Scott is drawing up a storm here. After that, I’d tie things up with RASL #15 ($4.99). Jeff, you get my money sight unseen.
If I could splurge, I’d take a chance and order Absalom: Ghosts of London (2000 AD, $17.99) because it looks pretty great. British cops governing over an ages-old pact between the English government and hell? Hell yeah.
This was a bit of a tough week for me, as there are a lot of single issues coming out that I’m interested in. If I had $15, I’d start with a couple of comics that have reached their conclusion: Joe Casey and Tom Scioli’s Godland #36 ($3.99) and Chris Roberson and Mike Allred’s iZombie #28 ($2.99). The solicitations for both promise answers to burning questions, so hurray for closure. Next I’d pick up two comics that are just starting out: Matt Fraction and David Aja’s Hawkeye #1 ($2.99) and Thom Zahler’s Love and Capes: What to Expect #1 ($3.99). That leaves me roughly $1 left over to apply to the next round.
If I had $30, I’d also pick up Beasts of Burden: Neighborhood Watch ($3.50), which collects the stories that originally appeared in the Dark Horse Presents anthology. I’d round it out with some of my monthly favorites: Daredevil #16 ($2.99), Boys #69 ($3.99) and Earth 2 #4 ($2.99). Honestly I wasn’t sold on that last one after reading the first issue, but issues #2 and #3 won me over. I guess that leaves me about $2.50, which isn’t quite enough to get one more comic … but for grins let’s pretend I found enough change in my seat cushions to also grab a copy of Avengers Academy #34. My hypothetical comic buying self appreciates it.
Splurge: I’m not sure this book is actually coming out this week; ComicList has it up, but I don’t see it on Diamond’s list. But what the heck, let’s just pretend I’m gonna be real happy when I hit the comic shop this week: my splurge money would go toward Cardboard by Doug TenNapel, the latest from the creator of Earthworm Jim and a whole bunch of awesome graphic novels you should add to your shelf.
If I had $15: John noted a couple of series ending this week. I’m definitely on board for the final issue of Godland. I’m also sure to pick up issue #15 of RASL, Jeff Smith’s noir/sci-fi series that winds up this week. It’s been an interesting departure for Smith and I’m anxious to see how he concludes things. For a trifecta, I’ll wind things up with The Boys #69.
If I had $30, after those initial purchases there’s not much else I’d want to nab, but I would likely pick up Monster Dinosaur ($9.99), the latest all-ages comic from Lewis Trondheim. I’m enough of a Trondheim fan to pick up anything he does regardless of the intended age group.
Splurge: No Straight Lines: 4 Decades of Queer Comics features work by Alison Bechdel, Maurice Vellkoop, Dan Savage, Howard Cruse, Trina Robbins, Joyce Farmer and many more notable cartoonists. That’s enough to make it my splurge choice of the week.
Should I find myself with $15 to spend, I’m sure I’d grab the first issue of Hawkeye (Marvel, $2.99) just to see what Matt Fraction and David Aja get up to as they get the old Iron Fist band back together. The soon-to-come end of Grant Morrison’s Action Comics run would have me grabbing #12 of that, as well (DC Comics, $3.99).
The rest of the week, though, belongs to my reborn 2000AD fetish. If I had $30, I’d pick up Absalom: Ghosts of London (Rebellion/Simon & Shuster, $17.99), collecting a recent(ish) strip that pushes police procedural and spooky goings-on right up against each other and then stands back to watch the carnage.
And if I was splurging, then I’d definitely pick up the $24.99 Strontium Dog: The Life and Death of Johnny Alpha collection (Again, Rebellion/Simon & Shuster); Strontium Dog was one of my favorite strips when I read 2000AD as a kid, and the idea of seeing what creators John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra get up to going back to the strip 30 years later is far too exciting a prospect to pass up.
With $15, I’d first grab the Beasts of Burden: Neighborhood Watch one-shot ($3.50) and follow it up with a couple of butt-kicking heroines in Courtney Crumrin #4 ($3.99) and Avenging Spider-Man #10 ($3.99). Avenging Spider-Man wraps up Kelly Sue DeConnick’s short story that introduced the new Captain Marvel, and with art by Terry Dodson I enjoyed it even more than Captain Marvel #1. I’d finish up my purchases by further supporting the DeFraction family and getting Hawkeye #1 ($2.99). I didn’t read Iron Fist, but marketing for Hawkeye invoked The Rockford Files and a ’70s vibe, so I’m checking it out.
If I had $30, I’d just add Doug TenNapel’s Cardboard ($12.99) to that pile. I picked up a bunch of his books in San Diego, so even if this hadn’t been one of them, the strength of the other two (Bad Island and Ghostopolis) would make this a must-buy. I’ll be reviewing it for Robot 6 shortly.
There aren’t any super expensive items I want this week, so my splurge would take the form of a few books I couldn’t fit in my regular budgets. The Planet of the Apes Annual ($4.99) sounds like a lot of fun with stories by Jeff Parker, Gabriel Hardman, Daryl Gregory, Carlos Magno, Corinna Bechko, and John Lucas that cover three time periods from PotA history. I’d also grab The Spider #4 ($3.99) even though, seriously, didn’t #3 come out just two weeks ago? Still, that’s a great series and I love reading it. Finally, I’d join Mautner in buying Monster Dinosaur ($9.99), because Lewis Trondheim. And dinosaurs.