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Judging (DC’s December) Books By Their Covers

by  in Comic News Comment
Judging (DC’s December) Books By Their Covers

DC’s December Solicitations are up, so now is as good a time as any for us to make prejudgements based just on the covers (as we all love to make prejudgements, don’t we?).

Let’s begin!
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Occasionally in life, there comes times when you are looking forward to one thing, and are disappointed to see another thing.

Some examples – you’re expecting “No cavities” and you get “You need a root canal.”

You’re expecting “A+” and you get “C+”

You’re expecting “Written by Grant Morrison” and you get “Written by John Ostrander.”

Sigh.

Oh well, if you’re GOING to have a four-issue fill-in arc in the middle of a Grant Morrison storyline, you can do a lot worse than the team of John Ostrander and Tom Mandrake, who, of course, everyone remembers from their stellar work on Firestorm and Martian Manhunter (there may have been another book, I can’t recall).

I guess this is DC’s response to those Civil War revolts over late shipping. Rather than ship this late, we see the return of the fill-in issue!!

I can only imagine what the sales will look like – the sales chart will look like a roller coaster!

Nice enough cover, though, by Greg Lauren, whose Hellblazer covers I hated.
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Dave Johnson is really a wizard with covers, isn’t he?

Such a beautiful 100 Bullets cover. It probably should be in the honorable mentions.
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Very appropos Astro City cover by Alex Ross.

I dig it.

Groovy, man, groovy.
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Not a fan of this Adam Kubert Action Comics cover.

Weird perspective and not a fan of the character work, either.
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The truth finally comes out due to this Glenn Fabry A Man Called Kev cover…

Garth Ennis really does think Kev is a god-like creature.
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Nice Gilbert Hernandez cover for American Splendor.

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Yes, I know it is pretty trashy, but dammit, I still get a kick out of Joshua Middleton’s American Virgin covers!

The style just oozes a sense of nonchalant cool, mixed, of course, with the trashiness of it all.
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Butch Guice’s Aquaman covers have been sorta painful to look at. They’re all so STIFF-looking.

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Very nice Ladronn cover for the All-New Atom.

Just a LITTLE looser, and I think this’d be a top five cover easily. As it is, it strikes me as a bit too stiff. Still, very very nice cover. This was a great month for DC covers after a few lackluster months in a row.
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Yet another excellent piece of artwork by Gene Ha for Authority that I just don’t think works that well as a cover of a book.

I can’t wait to see the Golden variant.
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Decent, if not particularly inspired Cully Hamner cover for Blue Beetle.

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This Whilce Portacio cover for Batman Confidential certainly is striking. A little TOO much so, as it is creepy as all get out!

Also, is this the first work Diggle has done for DC since he signed his exclusive?
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Ugh.

Awful cover for Batman Strikes by Christopher Jones. His interiors have been good, but that cover – ugh.

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Very nice Stephane Roux cover for Birds of Prey, although it sorta gives away the secret of #100, no?

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Pretty good Derec Donovan cover for Connor Hawke #2.

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Interesting McManus cover for the Creeper.

Good use of the Joker.

A connection between the two, though? Who’s writing this, Roy Thomas?
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Surprisingly decent (as in “only” decent) Crossing Midnight cover by the great J.H. Williams III.

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Creepily effective Deadman cover by John Watkiss.

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Pretty decent Danijel Zezelj. He was a good choice to follow Williams III.

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Very subtle DMZ cover by Brian Wood.

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Very nice Simone Bianchi Detective Comics cover.

I like it when he draws action sequences.
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Is this the actual Ex Machina cover by Tony Harris?

Not just a scene from the book?

Not the most vivid cover out there.
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This HAS to be a scene from inside, right?

Otherwise, this is a quite weak Phillip Bond cover for Exterminators.
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One of the weirdest things about being aged prematurely is what you see on this cover.

Inertia was Bart’s enemy when he was Impulse, so to be his rival when Bart is now an adult?

Kinda creepy.
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Very effective Ryan Sook cover for Friday the 13th.

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Decent Brian Stelfreeze cover for Firestorm.

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Nice to see McDaniel drawing Batman again!

Pretty good cover, overall.
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I’m impressed by Talent Caldwell’s work on this Gen 13 cover.

Not bad!

And “bad” is what I expect from him.
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Okay, Chaykin, I liked it the first time, but come on, dude, every cover you draw of Guy Gardner can’t just be the dude standing there!

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Very nice, moody piece for this Hellblazer cover by Lee Bermejo.

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Not the most inspired Hawkgirl cover by Chaykin.

Note the protruding nipples remain!

A stalwart!
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Okay, I admit it, “Infinite Christmas” made me laugh when I saw it.

Good job, DC.

Not such a great Howard Porter cover, though.

And is that Batwoman?!?!

A LESBIAN AT CHRISTMAS?!?!

Think of the children, DC!!!

THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!!
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Another blah Kalman Andrasofszky Ion cover!

Collect ’em all!

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Nice James Jean cover for Jack of Fables.

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Art Adams, tsk tsk tsk…you’re missing the protruding nipples!!

Otherwise, nice variant cover for JLA.
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For this other JLA #5 cover, I am annoyed.

What is the point of doing the “blanks hiding the secrets” bit if you’re not going to play fair! When they did the blanks for JLA #1, the blanks didn’t match the actual cover!

I CALL BS, DC!!!
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I love Christmas covers. This JLU one wasn’t as good as last year’s, though.

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Nice Rags Morales cover for JSA Classified.

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Oooh..that’s a freaky looking Alex Ross cover. What’s the point of having Alex Ross draw your cover if he does it like THAT? It looks so…weird.

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Nice homage cover by Dale Eaglesham, though, for the other JSA #1 cover.

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See, now THIS is the Alex Ross I’m used to!

Still not a great cover (it’s for the second Justice HC), but at least it’s the Alex Ross I’m used to!
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Pretty cool looking Justice cover by Alex Ross.

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Scott Jeralds continues to knock these Krypto covers out of the park!

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What an odd Walt Simonson cover for Legends of the Dark Knight.

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Very sweet Frusin cover for Loveless.

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Nice Scott Gross cover for Looney Tunes.

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Pretty cool Art Adams cover for Manhunter. Nice to see them giving the character a push.

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Fairly decent Chris Sprouse cover for Midnighter. Nothing out of this world, but pretty good.

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Sweet Mystery in Space cover by Shane Davis. He’s had some inventive covers.

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Another strong Al Barrionuevo cover for Martian Manhunter.

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Yikes!

Not a fan of this Dietrich Smith cover for The Next.

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Good Michael Chang cover for Ninja Scroll, but a step down from his previous covers for the book.

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Much more dynamic Tony Harris cover for this Elm Street cover.

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Not impressed with this Ethan van Sciver Nightwing cover.

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OMACs just annoy me so much.

I am sorry Renato Guedes. You do good work with what you have!
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What a weird-ass Omega Men cover by Henry Flint.

I think I like it.

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Is that Katana on this Outsiders cover?!

Matthew Clark, what have you done?!?!

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Good Gleason Robin cover.

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Pretty blase Ordway cover for Red Menace.

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Not that impressed with this Nick Bradshaw Rokkin cover.

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CHRISTMAS COVERS!

I love Christmas covers.

Pretty good Scooby Doo one by Scott McRae.
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I will give Ken Lashley this much. I don’t love the cover, but the work he does on the cover with Captain Boomerang is handled nicely – nice subtle touch.

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Isn’t it supposed to be a secret who is coming in in this issue?

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Nice McManus Shadowpact cover.

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Oh man.

I HATE this Phil Jimenez cover for Superman/Batman.

So ugly.

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This Tim Sale cover for Superman Confidential, on the other hand?

Very nice, if a bit overly stylized.
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SWEET Carlos Pachecho cover for Superman.

Krypto rules!
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Nice cover for the Sandman Mystery Theatre revamp.

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Decent Stormwatch cover.

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That is a FREAKY Testament cover.

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Good Cam Stewart The Other Side cover – but a bit of a step down from his other ones.

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Funny Googe cover for Tranquilty #1.

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Mad Mod scares me!

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I love the look on Uncle Sam’s face!

Ha!

He’s all “this dismays me!”

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Creepy Wetworks cover.

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Decent Y cover.

Reminds me of the movie Ghost.
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HONORABLE MENTIONS!
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Matt Wagner has a great style, and that makes this otherwise fairly uneventful Tales of the Unexpected cover stand out.

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I love Darwyn Cooke so much that I dig this cover even if it isn’t all THAT good.

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Very amusing Kilian Plunkett cover for JLA Classified.

Great idea for a cover.
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Who did this JLA trade cover?

Is that Bolland?

Very nicely done.
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I do not like Sasha, so I’m rooting for Sarge Steel, but damned if this isn’t a fine Checkmate cover by Jesus Saiz.

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Very nice 52 cover by JG Jones.

He’s done such great work every week.
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TOP FIVE

5. What a stunning Gleason cover for Green Lantern Corps.

I love covers that use blacks and whites effectively – it’s such a great tool for cover artists, but not a lot can pull it off.

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4. Matt Wagner just has a gift for eye-popping covers.

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3. As I’ve said before, Adam Hughes sometimes gives us some amazingly creatively designed covers.

This Catwoman cover is one of those.

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2. I love Christmas covers!!

And this James Jean Fables cover is one of the best!

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1. Frank Quitely, Frank Quitely, he’s the man!

If he can’t do it – wait a few months until he can!

YAY FRANK QUITELY!!

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Okay, that’s it for me, folks!

Feel free to share YOUR prejudices (and YOUR top five)!!

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