Welcome once again to Can't Wait for Wednesday, our weekly look at what you can expect to find in your local comic shop tomorrow.
Although a snowstorm caused some problems at Diamond Comics Distributors' headquarters this week, I hear through the grapevine that they aren't expecting any delays in getting comics shipped out to shops. Good news indeed.
To see what Kevin, Chris and I have to say about this week's comics, read on ...
Chris Mautner's Pick of the Week: Hicksville Definitive Edition
One of the most important comics to come out of the art comix scene of the 1990s, Hicksville was the finest love song ever written to the medium at that time. A mystery set in a quaint New Zealand town where everyone just happens to be an ardent comics junkie and no one wants to talk about its most famous resident, superhero artist Dick Burger. It's such a significant and beloved work that it's hard to believe it's languished out of print for so long. Thank goodness Drawn and Quarterly has seen fit to reissue it and get it out in front of people's noses again. If you haven't read this yet, you're missing out on a real treat. (Drawn and Quarterly)
Kevin Melrose's pick of the week: Mesmo Delivery trade paperback
The new edition of Rafael Grampá's hyper-violent, beautifully illustrated ode to '70s road movies and horror films was supposed to be released last week, but it was nowhere to be found on Diamond's shipping list. Whether it's out this week depends upon whom you ask. No matter, though -- whenever Mesmo Delivery hits stores, it'll be my pick of the week.
Originally released in 2008 through AdHouse Books, Mesmo Delivery centers on two delivery men -- Rufo, a brawny ex-boxer, and Sangrecco, an Elvis impersonator who views violence as performance art -- who are hired to deliver a mysterious cargo. Of course, everything isn't quite as it seems -- what fun would that be? -- and matters only get worse when the duo encounters a group of drunken locals at a rest stop.
The new edition features a new cover, an extended sketchbook, an introduction by Brian Azzarello and pin-ups by Eduardo Risso, Mike Allred, Craig Thompson and Fabio Moon. For more details, you can read my interview with Grampá here. (Dark Horse)
JK Parkin's pick of the week: DMZ #50
JK: Is DMZ really up to issue 50? It just doesn't seem like it's been around that long, but the numbers don't lie. This anniversary issue features a bunch of short stories with art by an all-star line-up, as Brian Wood teams up with regular series artist Riccardo Burchielli, his Local collaborator Ryan Kelly, his DV8 collaborator Rebekah Isaacs, Static artist JP Leon and many more. It also includes some one-pagers by folks like Jim Lee and Dave Gibbons.
If you aren't a regular DMZ reader, this one will be worth checking out, as it should give you a taste of what the series has to offer (as well as some really great art by all the guests). And Wood is donating his page rate for one of the stories -- a four-pager drawn by Fabio Moon -- to stopclustermunitions.org, so there's a good cause involved as well. Find out more about this issue here. (DC/Vertigo)
B.P.R.D.: King of Fear #2
Kevin: Mike Mignola, John Arcudi and Guy Davis send Kate Corrigan to the ruins of Hunte Castle in Austria, where she hopes to leave the ghost of Lobster Johnston to rest and free the spirit of Johann Kraus. (Dark Horse)
Batman and Robin #8
Kevin: What's this? Two issues of Batman and Robin in one month? Cameron Stewart continues as artist in a story guest-starring Batwoman, Knight and Squire. (DC Comics)
JK: It's John Constantine's 25th birthday, and to help celebrate former Hellblazer writer Jamie Delano teams with Jock for a hardcover graphic novel that has the birthday boy heading to Iraq. (DC/Vertigo)
Human Target Vol. 3 #1
Kevin: Writer Len Wein returns to the character he created in 1972 with Carmine Infantino in this six-issue miniseries designed to capitalize on the new Fox television series that ... doesn't much resemble the character Wein and Infantino created. Here, Wein is joined by artist Bruno Redondo for a story that pits Christopher Chance against organized crime syndicates from across Europe. There's also a backup story by Peter Johnson, executive director of the TV show, and artist Chris Sprouse. (DC Comics)
Secret Six #18
JK: This issue wraps up the Blackest Night tie-in three-parter written by Gail Simone and John Ostrander, and drawn by Jim Calafiore. The Secret Six and the Suicide Squad take on several deceased Suicide Squad members who have come back as Black Lanterns ... and if you know your Suicide Squad history, there were a lot of former members to choose from. (DC Comics)
JK: Writer Ben McCool and artist Ben Templesmith tell the story of Johnny "Choker" Jackson, a cop in a city that's "a crazed amalgamation of 1930's gangland Chicago and 'Blade Runner's' Los Angeles." Check out a preview here. (Image)
Nextwave: Agents Of Hate Ultimate Collection TPB
JK: The gift that keeps on giving. This collection of Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen's much-loved series collects the entire series, along with its awesome letter columns. Also, I totally agree with Gratuitous Guttenberg, which is something I never thought I would say. (Marvel)
Tails of the Pet Avengers #1
Kevin: This all-ages one-shot by the likes of Chris Eliopoulos, Colleen Coover, Ig Guara and Gurihiru features stories about Frog Thor, Zabu, Lockjaw, Redwing, Lockheed and, yes, even Ms. Lion. Ms. Lion! You can read a preview here. (Marvel)
X-Men Pixie Strikes Back #1
JK: Writer Kathryn Immonen and artist Sara Pichelli take Pixie and several other young mutants currently residing in the Bay Area to high school. The solicit text promises we'll learn who Pixie's dad is; apparently he's a big X-villain. (JK)
Anchor, Vol. 1 trade paperback
JK: BOOM! Studios collects the first four issues of The Anchor into a $10 trade, which is an excellent deal for four issues of any comic, much less one that's this good. Issue #5 is also out this week as well. (BOOM!)
Chris: Here's a new collection of strips starring Steve Weissman's enclave of horror-themed little tykes, most of which originally ran online. If you like the Our Gang comics or Archie or the general "kids pal around, go on adventures and make each other miserable" type of comic, chances are you'll really like this (Fantagraphics)
From the Ashes
Chris: Bob Fingerman's tale of love and post-apocalyptic mutants starring (barely) fictionalized versions of himself and his wife gets the trade collection thingy. (IDW)
Hank Ketcham's Dennis The Menance HC 1959-1962 Box Set
Chris: Two, count 'em, two thick volumes of classic Dennis cartoons from the late 50s and early 60s. See Dennis bother the barber! Pester the construction workers! Annoy Margaret! Confuse Joey! And generally drive Mr. Wilson and his parents up a frickin' wall. All in the name of fun. And adorableness. (Fantagraphics)
King Special Edition
Chris: Ho Che Anderson and Fantagraphics give the lush full-press treatment to the author's lengthy biography of Martin Luther King Jr., with notebook and diary excerpts, sketches, cut sequences and a whole lot more. This was honestly never one of my favorite graphic novels but I know it has its fans. (Fantagraphics)
Little Nothings Vol. 3: Uneasy Happiness
Chris: A new collection of autobiographical one-page strips by French curmudgeon Lewis Trondheim is always reason to cheer. Provided they've been translated into English of course. And they have been. (NBM)
Chris: Ooo, this came out of left field territory. For years (16 to be exact), Baron Storey's Marat/Sade Journals have been highly prized by certain folks in the art-comics crowd. Now here comes a revised and re-edited version, in hardcover no less. I'd snatch this puppy up quick if you chance upon it, 'cause it might be another 16 years before it comes out in print again. (Graphic Novel Art).
Newave Underground Mini Comix of the 80s
Chris: I'm a sucker for discovering unexplored corners of comics history, and this collection of mini-comics from the Reagan era by folks like Mack White, Dan Clowes, Rick Geary and a lot of folks I've never heard of before seems to do just that. The book also features a historical synopsis by editor Michael Dowers and interviews with some of the creators. (Fantagraphics)
The Diamond site is still behind due to the snowstorm issues they experienced yesterday, but you can find an almost-complete list of everything hitting stores tomorrow here. Let us know what you plan to get at your local comic shop tomorrow in the comments below.