The Buy Pile: Miles Morales and Megatron Make Their Mark

Spider-Man Annual #1


Every week Hannibal Tabu (winner of the 2012 Top Cow Talent Hunt/blogger/novelist/poet/jackass on Twitter/head honcho of Komplicated) takes on an between seven to thirteen reviews (or so) to share his opinions with you. Thursday afternoons you'll be able to get those thoughts (and they're just the opinions of one guy, so calm down) about all of that ... which goes something like this ...


Spider-Man Annual #1 (Marvel Comics)

Jump from the Read Pile. Miles Morales takes the high ground in a story of loss and responsibility steeped in the trappings of modern day teen culture. Writer Bryan Edward Hill crafts a perfect done-in-one on Miles' birthday, cementing him as the hero he becomes and showing the ties to his ne'er-do-well uncle are not so tight that he can't find a better way.

RELATED: Spider-Man Annual Unveils Miles Morales’ First Superhero Costume

The artwork from Nelson Blake the 2nd, Alitha Martinez, Mark Bagley, Roberto Poggi, Carlos Lopez and Cory Petit connects and enthralls. There's a fun back up story about driver's ed that isn't bad either, delivering a gripping all ages book that's worth the cover price. RATING: BUY.

Transformers Lost Light #22 (IDW Publishing)

Transformers Lost Light #22
Strap in, this ride is getting even wilder in Transformers Lost Light #22.

Wow. Of course, this issue doesn't have the remotest interest in you if this is your first look at this series. This is deep, deep, deep in the tall grass stuff happening here. A planet sized Transformer steps through a portal from another universe planning to murder most of everyone he encounters ... and it's not the planet sized Transformer you might be expecting. With amazing perspective work, you get the sense of the scope of this threat, as you look from different angles and see 60 foot tall mechanoids gaping in horror at what they're facing, all while others quip and snipe verbally at each other. What's brilliant about this is that said planet sized Transformer is maybe the third or fourth most interesting thing about this book, with the last six pages or so hauling it like Burt Reynolds in a 1977 Firebird Trans Am.

In case you missed it, writer James Roberts is crafting what is shaping up to one of the best long form tales in comics (think the first 100 or so issues of Fables good) and this issue further makes that case. The visual work of Brendan Cahill, Joana LaFuente and Tom B. Long make every moment connect like a punch from Ali in his prime. RATING: BUY.

Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #35 (Marvel Comics)

Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #35
Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #35 will likely have the most erudite references of any comic you will read this week.

In this issue, Kraven -- convicted of crimes he mostly committed before trying to be less of a jerk -- clashes with Spider-Man while attempting to escape the long arm of the law. In wildly ironic circumstances, Squirrel Girl argues that Kraven is now mostly not a jerk and should be allowed to grow as a person. Breaking out a French origin for a Marvel trope, a heavy dose of Russian philosophy (which is not easy to swallow) and more incredulity from one certain wall-crawler, this issue was funny, action packed, smart as heck and deeply emotional. Who does that? Ryan North, lover of pies, for starters.

The clean lines of Derek Charm have breathed dynamic new life into this already fantastic series, with the certain hands of Rico Renzi and Travis Lanham to make the colors and letters perfect. This series is a national treasure and this issue is another great example why. RATING: BUY.

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