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Judging (Image’s October) Books By Their Covers

by  in Comic News Comment
Judging (Image’s October) Books By Their Covers

Image’s October Solicitations have been up for awhile, but I figure there’s still a little bit of time to sneak in before the new Image solicits come out, so let’s make prejudgments based just on the covers (as we all love to make prejudgments, don’t we?).

Let’s begin!
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Mark me down as a bit put off by the concept of “Watch how many regular characters we kill!” “You won’t BELIEVE how many favorites we kill!!”

Just a BIT too morbid for my tastes.

Nice Charles Adlard cover, though.
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I really dig the expressiveness of this Luna brothers cover.

The surrounding images, however, do not do much to highlight the main image.

It’s just sorta…there.
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First off, well done by C.B. Cebulski to pull off another coup from (presumably) his Marvel connection. He got Yu to do the first issue of Wonderlost, and now he has one of Marvel’s hottest artists, Steve McNiven, doing the second issue.

As for how it turns out…well…

It’s definitely a striking cover.

I just can’t figure out why he drew the girls the way he did. I mean, you would think he’d try to throw a LITTLE variety into the two.

I can just barely buy the concept of the “totally normal” girl with a tight shirt, tight pants and a six-inch waist…but BOTH of them?

Seems actually kinda lazy.
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Interesting cover by Jamie McKelvie.

I like the mix of an almost Dan DeCarlo style with surrealism.

But the inner TR in me hates the name of the comic.

Such inefficiency!!!
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Are the covers for David Hine’s Strange Embrace new, as well?

It this is a new cover, he did a delightfully creepy job with it.
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I like this stylized David Hartman cover.

He uses the title banner AND shadows to great effect.
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A trade paperback collecting the first FOUR issues of the new creative team seems a bit odd to me, especially with the $15 price tag.

Toss in a wholly uninspired Brian Haberlin cover (is this seriously the final cover? It APPEARS to be so, but that seems so hard to believe, as this drawing looks like it is an inventory drawing), and this doesn’t seem to be the best way to market what is probably the best Spawn storyline since Grant Morrison was writing the comic book.
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Who did this Sorrow cover? Looks like Kieron Dwyer’s signature.

In any event, this is a wonderfully drawn depiction of a woman dealing with what appears to be some sort of assault.

However well it is drawn, though, it seems a bit strange to be the lead image on a comic book cover. What comes off as a realistic, and touching, drawing of a woman reacting to violence comes off to me, using just a quick glimpse on a cover, as basically T&A, which I know is not the intent with this piece.
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Fun Riley Rossmo cover for Proof.

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I wonder if perhaps this Michael Cavallaro cover would work better without the gunman.

Sans the gunman, this would be a striking, wistful cover.

In either event, there’s enough of the wistfulness to make it still a good cover.
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A striking Madman cover by Allred.

It is an intriguing cover piece.
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Good Juan Ferreyra cover.

Looks like a little bit of Dave Johnson influence there. That’s a good influence to have.
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While perhaps not the most original cover layout by Tony Cypress, he still does a good job overall.

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I am taken aback at the printing/coloring on this Invincible cover!

Look at how the colors really pop! It’s interesting (the cover image, sadly, is not all that interesting).
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Hard to get much trippier than this Frazer Irving Gutsville cover.

It’s well drawn, at least!
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This John Cboins cover reminds me a bit of Paul Smith’s Leave it to Chance…

It’s a good style.
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I’ll give Jay Anacleto this – this Godslayer cover is probably the coolest cover I’ve seen of Spawn riding on top of a dragon skeleton.

And, as you can imagine, that is a widely typical cover design.
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Very cute Andi Watson cover.

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Not a bad Ben Templesmith cover, but the eeriness of the written message is a bit lost for a cover.

At first glance, you cannot even read the writing! That makes it a bit silly for a cover design.
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This Elephantmen: War Toys cover would be a lot cooler if it was a bigger drawing, wouldn’t it?

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Strong pair of Asrar covers….

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It takes a little effort, but when you put that effort in, Ryuske Hamamoto did a very nice job with this Compass cover.

Granted, doing a cover, you have to assume people WON’T put in a little effort to read your cover, so maybe I should rethink that one…
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Decent Brit cover.

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Very nice cover design by Dean Haspiel.

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I have absolutely no idea what Mark Schultz Michael Kaluta drew here, which is why it is not ranked higher, but I’ll be damned if he did not draw the heck out of it!!!

So, decent Bad Planet cover.
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What artist is this? The Solicits say Tony Moore.

That’s not Tony Moore, right?
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With that outfit, no wonder she looks so distraught in this (otherwise fine) Mayhew Witchblade cover!

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There is a lot of clothing on this Witchblade manga cover.

Thank goodness I added the “manga” part, or else I think I would be violating some sort of law.
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Par for the course, a bizarre Pander Brothers cover.

Nice to see another creator taking their unpublished work back!
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I don’t know why more comics don’t work in afterbirth into their covers.

Seriously, though, this Stjepan Sejic is a bit too oddly ornate for me, but at least we get to see some detailed work from Sejic. As the upcoming regular artist on Witchblade, I do not know how much detail we are going to be seeing – kinda hard to use a style like Sejic AND keep a regular schedule, unless you cut corners a bit.

Also, isn’t it a bit silly to announce Sejic is going to be busy drawing Witchblade when supposedly the same creative teams from the Pilot Season one-shots are going to be doing the winning ongoings. (Edited to add: my pal Ian tells me they actually made it clear that odds were the artists WOULDN’T be doing the ongoings! My apologies, Top Cow!)
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HONORABLE MENTIONS!
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Not ONE, but TWO covers this month involving someone’s head having a gaping hole shot into it!

I think I would have put either one in the top five, but BOTH of them? A bit too much, so just outside of the top five for both.

Here’s a funny Kieron Dwyer cover about porn zombies…

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And here is Kyle Baker, going one step further (and cooler) with his anti-Disney cover.

Very nice.
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Outside of a LITTLE stiffness on this Durwin Talon cover, this Bonds cover is quite strong.

The logo is a mite bit confusing, though.
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What a cool looking Elephantmen: War Toys cover.

The way the perspective is handled just right, while the carnage of the scene is still detailed well – it’s just a great piece of laying out a cover.
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I could probably think of another example, but off the top of my head, this is the coolest Greg Capullo cover I have ever seen.

Cowboy sheriff Spawn with a wickedly depicted pair of shotguns revolvers smoking?

Totally awesome.
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TOP FIVE!!
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5. Very intriguing Frank Espinosa Killing Girl cover.

He manages to have so much going on on his covers, all without sacrificing his main figure.
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4. A bit on the photorealistic side, but otherwise, this Tomm Coker The Ride cover is like an awesome movie poster.

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3. This Gabriel Ba Casanova cover is wonderfully twisted and bizarre.

Ba has a great design sense.
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2. I do not know what is going on on this Repo cover, but it is a striking dressed up tiger with blood all over its mouth.

I think Rob G has successfully communicated the main point – buy this comic to see what the heck is going on here.

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1. This Mike Allred Madman trade collection is one of the best examples of a trade collection cover that I can recall seeing.

Beautifully done by Allred.

Near perfection.

Recaps and a great design work – just awesome.
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Well, those are my picks! Share YOUR prejudices (and YOUR top fives)!!

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