Flippin' through <i>Previews</i> - September 2009

Everybody out of the pool! Lock up your women! It's time to flip through Previews #252!

Man, Previews is getting thinner each month. So sad! I certainly think its monopoly on comics distribution is a bad thing, but on the other hand, what will replace it? But that's not up for debate in this post! What is up for debate: Which is the more bad-ass cover????

That's a tough one. So much bad-assery! Let's get to the comics!

Dark Horse:

I'm torn about the Dr. Horrible one-shot on page 22 (18 November). On the one hand, everyone in the world (including, you know, orphans in Rwanda) loved the web movie. On the other hand, I never saw it. Because I am lame. So do I deserve to read this? On the other hand, Joëlle Jones draws this, and Joëlle Jones's art is concentrated awesome (even if typing her name means I have to check my HTML code every single freakin' time, because I never remember what the code is for a freakin' umlaut over an "e"). On the other hand (yes, I have four hands; don't you?), it won't feature Doogie Howser, who was, apparently, part of the awesomeness of the movie. See? I'm torn. But there it is, in case you're interested.

More Conan from Dark Horse: Page 29 brings us the Barry Windsor-Smith archives from the early 1970s (20 January). 200 pages, 50 bucks, and dang, I may have to purchase that.

Fear Agent volume 5 is solicited. Again (page 32; 13 January). Man, that book is slow. But seriously cool.

Over on page 37, we get the early stories of the Goon (30 December). I assume this means the Avatar stuff. I can't wrap my mind around The Goon at Avatar. That's just weird. Anyway, I have no interest in this, because I just don't like The Goon, but for 14 bucks, you might be interested.

Gantz volume 9 is offered on page 49 for 27 January. Considering that volume 6 hasn't come out yet (has it? I don't think it has), I'm not confident that Dark Horse can make this release date. Why are they soliciting it? I wonder.

Speaking of manga, The Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service volume 10 is finally offered on page 50 (13 January). I goddamn love this series.


DC must stand for "Dick Comics." They're giving out those rings, right? The seven different rings that all true nerds must have? So they're offered with various comics that ship in November. Retailers get them if they order a certain amount of the title. Twenty-five copies, to be exact. So that's fine for the green ring that comes with Blackest Night #5 (page 61; 25 November), because most retailers are going to order 25 copies of that. R.E.B.E.L.S. #10 (page 69; 11 November), however, is a different animal. I doubt if the retailers in Tony Bedard's home town sell 25 copies of R.E.B.E.L.S. I know it's a shameless ploy by DC to get retailers to order more of their lower-selling books, but don't be surprised if your retailer charges you a modest fee for some of these "free" rings.

On page 80, Brian Azzarello and Phil Noto have a Batman/Doc Savage Special (11 November) which leads into a mini-series by Azzarello and Rags Morales. This might be the most awesome thing DC puts out in November. It might suck, of course, but I surely hope it doesn't.

I very much doubt if I will buy The Great Ten, the new mini-series by Tony Bedard and Scott McDaniel (page 82; 4 November), but I do like that DC is putting out a series with Chinese superheroes. I'm always happy to see DC and Marvel go outside the United States for some superheroing!

I want to resist Lobo: Highway to Hell on page 83 (4 November), but I might not be able to. I love that Sam Kieth is drawing it, and although I have no idea if Scott Ian can tell a story, the man who wrote "Startin' Up a Posse" can't be all bad at it, can he? It's still 7 bucks for 64 pages, though, so we'll see.

John Ostrander writes Suicide Squad #15 (I mean Secret Six #15; page 87; 4 November). That should make Bill Reed happy. But Jim Calafiore draws it. That will make Bill Reed sad. Will he choose to buy it or not? The world holds its breath!!!!!

That Batman: Confidential arc featuring Catwoman and Batgirl and drawn by Kevin Maguire gets a trade paperback on page 90 (2 December). 128 pages for 13 bucks. Sounds good!

Batman: The Cult gets a new printing on page 90 (9 December). This isn't a great comic, but damn, Wrightson's art is cool. And if you think Quitely's Batmobile/Batcycle thing in Batman and Robin #3 is keen, wait until you see Wrightson's Batmobile!

Absolute Green Lantern: Rebirth on page 91? For $75? Even the extras don't make it worth $75.

The Mighty gets a trade on page 93 (23 December). I may have to check this out, because more than a few people have said it's good. Too bad Snejbjerg didn't stick around.

Wildstorm is finishing the God of All Comics' run on The Authority (page 100). Without Morrison. Without Gene Ha. Okay, G-Mozz plotted it, but still. Just move on, Wildstorm!

Ian Edginton writes Victorian Undead on page 105 (18 November). Sherlock Holmes versus zombies. As dumb as it sounds, I like Edginton a lot, so we'll see about this.

David Lapham cashes a pay check on page 106, as he writes a video game comic. I have absolutely NO problem with him cashing a pay check, believe me. Let's hope it allows him to do something I want to read.

I thought the cover of Hellblazer #261 (page 114; 18 November) was pretty damned awesome. The dude at my comic book store disagreed. What say you?

Mike Sterling pointed this out in his post on Previews, as DC missed the boat on page 130:

Batgirl dances the Watusi? Really, DC? Aren't you, you know, forgetting something about your past? (Mike links to this, which led me to this, which will make your brain explode from the radness.)

Man, this shit scares me:


You know, Image has done a lot in recent years to transform into a publisher that is putting out some of the best books in comics. And then they do this:

We're in hell. Yes we are. (Page 136; 25 November.)

And this:

A Haunt #1 collector's edition with gold-fucking-foil embossed logo, motherfuckers! (Page 143; 4 November.)

Did I say we were in hell? We're sinking fast here!

And then there's Spawn Origins Collection: Deluxe Edition Volume 1 (page 149; 18 November), bringing us issues #1-25* for $100. Okay, it features issues written by Alan Moore, Frank Miller, and Grant Morrison, but really? One hundred dollars?

* Not really #1-25, unless McFarlane and Gaiman kissed and made up and that issue is in here. But that wouldn't happen, would it?

In case you haven't gotten I Kill Giants yet, there's a new, "Titan Edition" on page 150 for 40 dollars (18 November). It's oversized (for American comics; Kelly told me at San Diego that Niimura drew it "European-style," so it's meant to be "oversized"), includes the script for issue #1 and other bonus stuff. This is one of the best mini-series in the past two years, so you should consider splurging on this.

If you missed Chew #1 and don't feel like paying $100 for a first printing, the trade is solicited on page 151 (25 November). Ten bucks for five issues!

Ministry of Space gets a new printing on page 153 (4 November). It's not bad.


I shouldn't be too surprised when Marvel and DC recycle ideas, but the turnover between the recycled ideas is getting really tight. Case in point: Amazing Spider-Man #612 (page 19; 18 November), in which Spidey's classic arch-enemies are redefined one by one! Didn't Mark Millar do that five years ago? Shouldn't his foes remain redefined for a bit longer than that?

Paul Cornell writes and Tom Raney and John Paul Leon draw a new origin of the Black Widow (page 25; 4 November). I'm sure it will ignore all the Black Widow mini-series that came out at the beginning of the decade, but that's still a good creative team!

The solicitation text for Dark Avengers #11 (page 27; 18 November) reads: "[T]he world gets turned upside down and no joke ... someone dies. For reelz!!" "For reelz"? Really?

I like the text for Jeff Parker's first issue on Thunderbolts (page 56; 18 November): "You've heard raves about Parker's [Agents of] ATLAS ... but now it's time to turn him loose on some real fiends!" That's a good way to put it - "You've heard raves." They should have written, "You've heard raves - 'heard' being the operative word, as none of you bought it so we have to cancel it!" Sorry, I'm still a bit bitter.

The text for Vengeance of the Moon Knight (page 58; 4 November) puzzles me: "Years ago, Moon Knight lost his mind and killed a man, cut off his face and brayed at the moon. That man was his nemesis: Raoul Bushman." That event occurred in the first few issues of Moon Knight's previous series. So "years ago" doesn't seem like it makes much sense. I know Marvel and DC plays fast and loose with time in their comics, but that stretches things a bit.

Deadpool gets a third ongoing series on page 62 (4 November). That sound you hear is the world ending.

So "Necrosha" is all about old heroes and villains coming back from the dead and menacing the current heroes? Gosh, I wonder where Marvel got that idea ...

Kieron Gillen and Steven Sanders bring us S.W.O.R.D. #1 (page 67; 11 November), which will probably be awesome. As with all new Marvel (and DC) books that don't feature established characters and therefore face a tough road to sales glory, I hope Gillen has planned this as a 12-issue limited series, because that's about all it's going to get, even with the tenuous X-Men connection. I don't mean to be pessimistic, just realistic. If he plans it for a year-long story, it will feel more complete than if Marvel cancels it out from under him, which they will. Or, you know, you could just buy the damned thing!

Psylocke #1 (page 71; 4 November) is the mini-series I should have written, because I love Betsy so very much. Luckily, I can complain about it on the Internet because I'm mean and bitter!

Incognito gets a trade on page 77 (25 November), if you're the kind of person who waits for the trade.

I know Powers has been delayed, so I guess Marvel figured it would be best to relaunch it with a new #1 (page 78; 25 November). I don't believe them when they say it's monthly, though. But that's because I'm mean and bitter (see above).

I buy my Marvel space epics in trade form, so I might have to get War of Kings in hardcover on page 87 (18 November). It's a ton of stuff for 40 bucks. What say the well-informed readers of the blog? Totally worth it?

Deadpool Classic volume 3 is offered on page 107 (25 November). The highlight of this collection, of course, is issue #11, in which Deadpool messes with the 1960s Spider-Man and which Our Dread Lord and Master swears is the greatest single issue in comic book history!!!!!!! (Okay, that may be hyperbole. He likes it, though.)

You know, about two years ago I spent a lot of time tracking down back issues of The 'Nam. So what does Marvel do? Release the first ten issues in trade (page 114; 18 November). Thanks, Marvel! (Of course, this is 30 dollars - I think I actually spent less for the first ten issues than that. So there's that.)

There's a third Fantastic Four Walter Simonson Visionaries trade on page 116 (4 November). It includes the Arthur Adams issues with the "fake" FF, which are hilarious comics. Plus, the other issues are probably good, too. It's Simonson, for crying out loud!

I'm fairly shocked that Marvel got out a third Essential Moon Knight volume, but there it is on page 117 (11 November). The last few issues of the first series, mostly drawn by Kevin Nowlan, are quite good, but the second series (which lasted only six issues) doesn't meet any definition of "essential." It's only 20 dollars, though, so it might be worth checking out if only for the end of the first series.

Let's move on from the Big Four and venture where angels fear to tread: The Back Of The Book!

SLG shows up on page 188 with Doris Danger: Giant Monster Adventures. It's the tale of a photo-journalist who tries to prove the existence of giant monsters but can never get a good photograph. Of course there are bad guys trying to cover up any proof of existence! And it features the "Sphinx-tor." Bwah-ha-ha-ha!!!!

Hey, page 190 gives us Sherlock Ninja from Antarctic Press. I have no interest in this, but I like how he's so cool he can still smoke his pipe while leaping into action:

Archaia collects all of Hybrid Bastards on page 192. This is a pretty good series in which Zeus's weird hybrid children get revenge on their father. It never finished, so it's nice that it's coming out all at once.

Warren Ellis has yet another "superhero-as-god" story on page 205 from Avatar called, appropriately, Supergod. I actually wanted to point this out because I just saw Talk Like Warren Ellis on Twitter, even though I don't follow Twitter and hardly ever go there! (Our own supergod, Chad Nevett, tweeted about it.) "Good evening, hideous orgasm pustules." See? Now everyone can talk like Warren Ellis!

Someone named Tonya Kay shows up in Tarot: Witch of the Black Rose #59 from Broadsword Comics (page 230). Somewhere in South Carolina, Chris Sims pours himself a double of bourbon and wonders if this issue will be the one that breaks him.

I'm not sure if the world was clamoring for an "essential" edition of Obergeist, but it's here on page 249 from Desperado Publishing. It's an odd comic, probably not worth 30 dollars, but certainly interesting.

In case you were foolish enough to miss it the first few times around, Evil Twin Comics has The More Than Complete Action Philosophers! on page 257. With four all-new stories! Damn you, Fred van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey, for making me want this!!!!

Demons of Sherwood shows up on page 271 from IDW. It's 12 years after Robin Hood restored King Richard to his throne, but things haven't been going well for him. Now he has to rescue Maid Marian all over again! It sounds fun, and it features Bo Hampton on art. I can forgive the twisting of the historical record (the Inquisition didn't exist until, at the very least, the late 1220s, much later than the events in this book could possibly occur) if the story is good.

Joe Sacco is back with one of those books that make lazy people like me feel bad that they're not doing more to alleviate suffering the world, Footnotes in Gaza (from Metropolitan Books, page 278), about a massacre of Palestinians by Israeli soldiers in 1956. I've never read a Sacco book, actually. Maybe I'll have to start with this one.

The Tick returns on page 280 from New England Comics. I don't know the writer, Benito Cereno, but Les McClaine draws it, so you know it'll look keen!

All the one-shot issues from Wasteland get collected in their own trade on page 281 from Oni Press. These are, of course, awesome. And only 14 dollars!

Radical has the collected edition of Hotwire: Requiem for the Dead on page 286. I don't know if the last issue ever came out, but the first three issues were pretty darned cool, and although 20 dollars might sound steep for four issues, apparently this has a bunch of extra stuff as well.

There's a new Tank Girl series on page 288 from Titan Publishing by Tank Girl creator Alan Martin. I've never been that interested in Tank Girl, but I do like that the cover promises "Now with added swearing!"

12-Gauge Comics on page 296 brings us Luke McBain #1 by David Tischman and Kody Chamberlain (who I met, briefly, in San Diego, and who seems like the perfect artist for this book, personality-wise). I don't have much interest in this, but I was wondering why disparate people seem to think the last name "McBain" sounds tough. What is it about the name? It's rather weird.

With that enigmatic query hanging in your brains, it's time once again to close our copy of Previews. And, as always, I implore you to explore the dark edges of the comics universe. No, there might not be a comic with a giant dude with a gaping chest wound and a sickle fashioned from a black lantern, but that's just a typical Saturday night for me, so I like to find something different! Fear not the Previews!

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