Covers of the Week - August, 8

Each Monday, staff writers Kevin Melrose and Steve Sunu discuss their five favorite covers from the previous Wednesday's new comic releases, selecting from among them CBR's Cover of the Week. Then, at the end of each month, they choose from the weekly winners -- you guessed it! -- a Cover of the Month.

This week, Adrian Veidt submits, a femme fatale basks in the sun, a ballerina dances with danger, the Ninth Wave walks the tightrope and Em of Appleloft does her best Ophelia.

Keep reading for Kevin and Steve's favorites from the week Aug. 8, and then discuss your choices in the CBR forums.

"Before Watchmen: Ozymandias" #2, by Jae Lee (DC Comics)

I'd be lying if I said eroticism - oh, okay, kinkiness - doesn't play a big part in the appeal of this Jae Lee image. For all of the masks, collars, leather and bondage in mainstream superhero comics, rarely do we see dominance and submission as anything more than timid subtext. Yet here we see Ozymandias -- the smartest man in the world, the pinnacle of human physical ability - so utterly passive at the end of a makeshift leash held by ... I have no idea who that is, but the gas mask and heels are no joke. I'm intrigued, too, by the color choices, with the yellow costume on the yellow background with the trademark "Watchmen" yellow; it probably shouldn't work, but it does. -- Kevin Melrose

"Blue Estate" #12, by Viktor Kalvachev (Image Comics)

Viktor Kalvachev's covers for the crime series "Blue Estate" are nothing if not imaginative, a mashup of pulpish noir, 1960s James Bond movie posters, advertising and vintage Jim Steranko. They're populated by femmes fatales, oversized "prop" objects - enormous martini glasses, pistols, cameras - and labels cleverly transforming the comic's title into the name of a racehorse, a brand of liquor, a line of razors. With the cover to Issue 12, Kalvachev once again delivers the mysterious (and likely dangerous) woman, this time lying on a beach against oversized guns that perform double duty as the trunks of palm (money) trees. Here, "Blue Estate" becomes a postage stamp, with the shipping instructions bearing the cover price. -- Kevin Melrose

"Dancer" #4, by Nic Klein (Image Comics)

Nic Klein's "Dancer" covers, with their limited palette of reds and blues, have been lovely, but this one is definitely my favorite. While the covers for issues 2 and 3 were all about action and tension, this one is oddly somber, with the pool of blood in the shape of a ballerina making the image that much more grim. -- Kevin Melrose

"The Massive" #3, by Rafael Grampa (Dark Horse)

Rafael Grampa is no stranger to Cover of the Week, and his most recent work on "The Massive" demonstrates why he makes the Top Five time and time again. The layout alone differentiates this cover from so many others, but it's the detail on the leaves that really sets it apart. As the eye draws closer and closer to the top of the cover, each leaf starts to come into view in a cornucopia of oranges and yellows that bring out the solitary figure running across wires in blue and black all the more. -- Steve Sunu

COVER OF THE WEEK: "Mouse Guard: The Black Axe" #5, by David Petersen (Archaia)

David Petersen's wraparound cover is simply gorgeous, with all of the elements, from the design to the color, working together to creator a memorable image. While the image of a dead Em floating in the water would be powerful on its own, Petersen ups the ante with the fine details on the petals, and the single black feather clutched in the mouse's paw. Such emotion and such skilled line work and coloring makes this image an easy choice for Cover of the Week. -- Steve Sunu

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