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Flippin’ through Previews – May 2012

Well, my good friend Ivan Hart Dominguez-Carson, sensitive soul that he is, went away crying from the comments last month, so I’m back to being a solo act! Let’s dive right into Previews #284, shall we?

Hey there, floaty dude!

You’ll notice I didn’t respond to any comments last month, because I didn’t want to spiral down a rabbit hole from which no man would ever return! I admit that Ivan can be a passive-aggressive douchebag sometimes, but I would also submit that perhaps some people shouldn’t be so sensitive about the things they love. If you love superhero comics, what the hell do you care what some schmuck on the Internet writes? I mean, even if you’re the most die-hard superhero guy in the world – some dude in my shop this week set up his pull list, and he told the retailer that he wants every single mainstream DC release, no questions asked, and I wish I was making that up – you have to admit the hyperbole in Previews is a tad bit silly. But that might not be enough, so I’ll tell you some things about me, and you can insult away! I love ABBA. Seriously. They’re like my second-favorite musical act. Ever. I own three (3) Kelly Clarkson CDs. Yes I do. I’m going to buy a fourth pretty soon, too. I watch Glee completely unironically and think it’s a darned good television program. I don’t know, is that enough? Comics-wise, I love Moon Knight; I’ve written two posts about how great two of his runs are. One of my favorite comic book characters is Lia Briggs. Yes, Looker. LOOKER, people! Okay, you jackals, how about: I own every single Uncanny X-Men and X-Men comic released in the 1990s. Yes I do. I own almost every single issue of Uncanny X-Men written by Chuck Austen. Come on, that has to make up for all the insults last month, right? Right? Bueller?

Of course, Ivan wanted to hit all the haters with this:

Just be thankful he didn’t do that! (Oh, wait …)

So, let’s check out some Previews! And yes, I’m going to make fun of some of the DC and Marvel stuff. I cain’t quit you, snarky insults!

Dark Horse:

On page 36, there’s a new Axe Cop mini-series. As usual, I must say that I don’t love Axe Cop, because my heart is cold and dark, but I’m sure Bill Reed is dancing around his humble abode waving his hands in the air in anticipations of this. Ethan Nicolle sure can draw, though. (25 July)

I'd vote for him!

If you missed Paul Chadwick’s Concrete in Dark Horse Presents, Three Uneasy Pieces collects the stories on page 39. They’re … okay. I guess they’re fairly typical Concrete stories (I had never read any of them prior to those), but they weren’t really my cup of tea. Good art, though. (18 July)

Dark Horse Presents #14 is 104 (!!!) pages with no price increase. As if you needed another reason to check this book out. (18 July)

I doubt if I’ll pick up The Chronicles of King Conan volume 3 on page 51, but it does feature “early work of superstar artist Marc Silvestri,” which might be interesting to see. (12 September)

On page 64, we get the Rex Mundi Omnibus volume 1 for 25 bucks, which is a fine value (even though the book isn’t as big as a “regular” single issue, as that’s how Dark Horse saves money, I guess?) I like Rex Mundi far more than is healthy, and I’m probably going to get this even though I own all the issues. It’s an alternate history story about the bloodline of Jesus – how can you not love it? (5 September)

If you don’t like reading comics on your computer or if you just like supporting awesome creators by giving them cold hard cash, Jeff Parker and Erika Moen’s hilarious webcomic Bucko gets a nice hardcover on page 67. Murder and dick jokes and Juggalos – that’s how you put together a comic book! It’s only 20 bucks, which is a pretty good value. Plus, Moen needs the cash to maintain her depraved lifestyle, and I’m sure you want to support that! (19 September)

Buy two, even! Get one for your mom!

DC:

I’m sure that the comics inside won’t reflect the covers, but this is the second straight cover of World’s Finest (page 87) where Huntress looks on, ineffective, while Power Girl gets the shit kicked out of her. Nut up, Huntress! (4 July)

'Don't worry, PG, I'll use my vast array of superpowers to save you ... oh, wait a minute ...'

I still don’t get this DCnU timeline (I know I shouldn’t think about it too much, but I do). So Green Arrow (page 93) actually did live in Seattle? Man, what a weird non-reboot reboot this is. (4 July)

Sholly Fisch is actually writing a back-up story in Action Comics #11 (page 95) about where Superman got T-shirts with his logo on them. Fisch is a decent writer, so I assume it will be a humorous little one-off, but yes, that is really happening. That’s why you pay 4 dollars an issue for it! (4 July)

“What is the true nature of Superman’s costume?” asks the solicits for Superman #11 on page 96. Can’t it just be, you know, a costume? Sweet fancy Moses. (25 July)

You know, when you promise “the most shocking conclusion of any of GEOFF JOHNS’S entire GREEN LANTERN run,” as DC does on page 108 for Green Lantern #11, I’m not sure you can really deliver based on the very little I’ve read of his GL comics up until now. I’m sorry, but unless Hal Jordan brings Hitler and Mao back to life and the three of them fuck Black Hand to death before snacking on the brains of Cub Scouts, I’m not really sure what Johns can do that he hasn’t already shocked us with. You see, people? This is why I mock. Solicitation texts like this make my head hurt. (11 July)

Stormwatch #11, page 117: “There is a shadow organization as old as STORMWATCH … but who are they and what secrets do they hold?” Yawn. Of course there is.

Okay, so usually characters get stupid names, but at least you can understand why they got them (Atrocitus, for instance – it’s idiotic, but it indicates that he’s rather unpleasant). So in Grifter #11, we meet … Synge? What the hell is that supposed to mean? I assume it’s supposed to be a clever homophone for “singe,” but singe isn’t terribly scary, is it? “Are you going to burn or scorch me?” “Bwah-ha-ha-ha, Grifter! No, I’m going to … SINGE YOU!” “Oh, okay. Carry on, then.” It’s written by Mr. Liefeld and Mr. Tieri, so perhaps that’s all we need to know. (11 July)

It looks like Grifter is the one doing the 'synging'

Okay, so you know how DC could get me excited about their output again? Check out page 124, on which you will find a motherfucking original graphic novel written and drawn by motherfucking Walter X. Simonson.* It’s called The Judas Coin, and it follows one of the silver coins paid to Judas as it makes its way through DC history. This, DC. Motherfucking this. You people need to buy the shit out of this so that maybe, just maybe, it might convince DC to break free of the hidebound publishing schedule they’re enslaved to. Oh, who am I kidding? But you should still buy it, because it will motherfucking rock. (12 September)

Holy fuuuuuuuuuuck

* The “X” stands for “X-cellent!”

National Comics (page 125) seems like a cool idea: single issue stories featuring different characters and different creators in each issue (in issue #1, it’s Kid Eternity by Jeff Lemire and Cully Hamner). I’d put the over/under on it lasting 10 issues, but I like the idea. Plus, issue #3 features Looker. LOOKER!!!!!!! (See above.) (25 July)

Now that the DC trades are coming out, I’m wondering about them. Should I really get the first trade of Swamp Thing (page 129)? Has it continued to be as good as everyone thought the first issue was? I’ve heard it kind of grinds its gears a bit, so what say you readers? (22 August)

You know, I thought that Final Crisis was a bit confusing when it was coming out in single issue format, but once I got the trade (which included Submit and Superman Beyond), it made perfect sense. So I’m curious about the Absolute Final Crisis that gets resolicited on page 132, “with SEVEN NEW STORY PAGES BY MORRISON AND MAHNKE!” Were these done and cut when the book was coming out, or did Morrison and/or DC decide to placate those poor confused people and this was done just for this edition? I wonder. I’d like to get this, but I have a bunch of other Absolute editions to get before I get this one. (31 October)

The O’Neil/Adams Green Lantern/Green Arrow gets collected in one book “for the first time” on page 133, so that’s something. Even with O’Neil’s preachiness, these are keen comics. (15 August)

The final trade of Hitman is offered on page 134, and includes the various appearances of Tommy Monaghan outside the regular title, so I might have to get it eventually. Dang, this is a superb comic book series. (1 August)

T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents volume 2 gets a trade on page 135. It’s not bad. DC ought to release all 16 issues eventually, though. That would be a nice little package. (15 August)

Has the Gibbons/Rude World’s Finest from 1990 never been collected before? Well, it’s getting a trade on page 135, so if it’s long out of print, here’s your chance to see some absolutely lovely artwork by the Dude. It’s a pretty good story, too. (8 August)

James Robinson is writing He-Man and the Masters of the Universe on page 141? I suppose DC backed a truck full of money up to his door, so more power to him! Did you know that, according to Wikipedia, a certain JMS wrote episodes of He-Man back in the day? That’s pretty awesome, if you ask me. (4 July)

God, I hated this cartoon back in the day

I’m going to wait for the trade of Punk Rock Jesus, Sean Murphy’s new mini-series (page 142), but it sounds awesome – it’s about a television series starring the clone of Jesus. Plus, it’s in black and white. And it has no interior ads. Is this a new thing for DC, that they’re going to promote their books based on the fact that they don’t have interior ads? That would be cool. In fact, maybe I will buy this in singles. We’ll see! (11 July)

Awe. SOME!

Remember to ignore iZombie #27 (page 145) because Chris Roberson dared to bite the hand that feeds him! Punish him! PUNISH HIM!!!!! (4 July)

Mike Sterling pointed this out already, but it bears repeating: Doesn’t this Rorschach statue (page 152) look a little too jaunty?

'Maybe I'll get a latte, or beat someone senseless, or dance around a streetlamp in the rain ... the possibilities are endless!'

IDW:

I’m perversely interested in seeing James O’Barr’s new work on The Crow, but I’m not at all interested in the new series offered on page 156. I mean, the Crow is a limited concept anyway, but at least O’Barr might do something interesting with it. The co-screenwriter of the movie? Not so much.

DC and Marvel aren’t the only ones engaging in a bit of hyperbole. Let’s consider Danger Girl/G. I. Joe on page 175:

The two most incredible covert action teams the world has ever known – so covert, in fact, that neither knows the other exists – are meeting for the first time ever! Repeat: Danger Girl and G. I. Joe, together. Spies! Girls! Ninjas! COBRA! If your head did not just explode, then you are one of the lucky few remaining that will live to enjoy a summer blockbuster you’ll have to see to believe!

Plus, there’s another tag: “The team-up the world isn’t ready for!” Okay, it’s a bit exaggerated. But I always get the feeling that companies not called DC or Marvel do this with tongue firmly in cheek, while the Big Two are deadly serious. I could be wrong, but it’s how I feel. But yes, this is a bit silly. Plus, I still don’t get the appeal of Danger Girl if J. Scott Campbell isn’t drawing it. Isn’t that the whole point?

There's only TWO reasons to buy this, ifyouknowwhatImean

Image:

The Walking Dead #100 shows up on page 188, which is a pretty impressive feat. I never read past issue #12, and I’m kind of sick of the television show, too. Does anything ever, you know, happen? (11 July)

John Layman and Rob Guillory bring us Secret Agent Poyo on page 192, a one-shot featuring everyone’s favorite chicken from the pages of Chew. It will, of course, rock. (11 July)

On page 194, Kurtis Wiebe and Riley Rossmo team up again for Debris, a mini-series about ecological disaster, spirits turning garbage into monsters, and the search for pure water. Sounds cheery! The preview art looks very cool, and these two make good comics together. (25 July)

Dang, that's a cool cover

… and then, on page 196, we get Enormous, a one-shot about … ecological disaster and giant monsters. Is it something in the water? This also looks pretty keen, although it’s in that slick art that can go either way for me. (5 July)

Can you choose just one?

Steven T. Seagle and Marco Cinello, who did Frankie Stein together, are back on page 202 with Batula, about a fruit bat who becomes a vampire … bat. My younger daughter likes Frankie Stein, so I might have to buy this for her. (5 July)

Back when I reviewed the Top Cow: First Look (that was a good time, wasn’t it?), I mentioned that Sunset by Christos Gage and Jorge Lucas was pretty good. Now it’s a full-fledged graphic novel on page 204. It’s in black and white, which might work better with Lucas’s photo-referenced art, and it’s about an old Korean War vet who has to do some killin’. Like you do when you’re a Korean War vet, I guess. You can get a preview of it for one thin dollar on page 205, or you can just trust your old pal Greg and dive right in! (16 July)

I think Our Dread Lord and Master is the one who has been lobbying for a trade of The Monolith for years, and lo and behold, he must have some pull at Image, because the Palmiotti/Gray/Winslade book shows up on page 206. When the Croninator wants something, he gets it, motherfuckers!!!!! (5 July)

Brandon Graham draws a cool cover for Elephantmen #43 (page 214). That’s because Brandon Graham knows how to draw good! (5 July)

Purty!

Marvel:

Okay, I’m sure this will be far more clever than I could comprehend, but on page 3, the solicit for Avengers Vs. X-Men #7 reads: “Cyclops changes the game with these three words: ‘No More Avengers!’ ” I know it’s supposed to echo the old House of M thing, but it makes no bloody sense. First of all, has Cyclops gained some weird reality-altering power in the preceding issues? Second, while you can say “No more mutants” and if you have reality-altering powers, it makes sense in a comic-booky kind of way because you can imagine the mutant gene not existing anymore, that kind of comic-book science doesn’t work for an organization. It reminds me of that dumb Justice League comic where Mark Millar had Superman disband the league just as Amazo was about to kick their asses but instead was rendered inert. It made no fucking sense! So what is Cyclops going to do, really? Say that and every Avenger will disappear? What about every Avenger ever? Will Beast disappear? Will Wolverine? Will some poor schmuck like, I don’t know, Firestar, who was an Avenger but isn’t anymore? What if Captain America says “I quit” just before Cyclops says that? Will he hang around? This is why superhero comics disappoint me more and more – this sounds cool until you think about it for longer than one second, and then it sounds stupid. I’m sure there will be more to it, but why should I buy a comic based on an idiotic solicitation text like that? (4 July)

I still don’t get this idea in Avengers Academy that the X-Men are coming for the Sentinel (page 5). It’s a robot. Robots can be reprogrammed. Why are they treating this inorganic and non-sentient appliance like it’s evil? I can see it: “The X-Men once watched an anti-mutant documentary on television, so they decide that all televisions must pay!!!!!!” They could call it AvX: Kill Your Television and get Joe Keatinge to write it and Shaky Kane to draw it. I’d buy that sucker in a heartbeat. (18 July)

Wolverine and the X-Men #14 (page 11): Really, Marvel? We’re pixellating covers now? (25 July)

Jeebus

I like how Avengers Assemble #5 gives us “the return of the characters you demanded!” Marvel brings back characters whether we demand them or not. And who did this demanding? Nobody asked me which characters I wanted back. I would have said Seth Phalkon. That dude kicked ass! (11 July)

Is Ultimate Comics Spider-Man (page 15) really one of the “best reviewed comics in the world”? I mean, I get that people like it, but did someone at Marvel do any fact-checking? This is why I would be fired from my job of writing solicitations. I’d write something like “One of the comics that a tiny percentage of the comics-reading public doesn’t want to set on fire and shove up Joey Q’s urethra continues!” I wouldn’t last long. (4 July)

I always enjoy who has gained “legendary” status according to the Big Two. If I told you a “legendary” artist was going to be drawing Scarlet Spider #7 (page 23), who would you think of? Go ahead, take your time. I will bet you one shiny nickel that you would grow old and die and your children would grow old and die before you came up with Khoi Pham, yet he’s part of a “legendary” team with Tom Palmer. I like Khoi Pham’s art, too, but I think Marvel should watch out with those adjectives. Now, where’s my motherfucking nickel, you cheapskates? (11 July)

So on page 35, Kraven guest-stars in Incredible Hulk #11, and he’s described as “the world’s deadliest hunter.” Shouldn’t he actually, you know, hunt something successfully to gain that title? I’m just sayin’. (25 July)

Speaking of “legendary,” Marvel can, I think, call Alan Davis such, and on page 37, he’s writing and drawing Fantastic Four Annual #33, which apparently is a ClanDestine story that will cross over with at least one other annual. Crap. Does that mean I have to buy those? Well played, Marvel! (11 July)

There’s a new Captain Marvel series on page 39 written by Kelly Sue DeConnick and drawn by Dexter Soy. I guess Carol Danvers has a Mohawk? Really? Anyway, Marvel isn’t charging 4 bucks for this first issue as they’ve done in the past, so maybe it will sell well! (18 July)

I really like that cover, but seriously with the hair?

Hey, remember when Marvel turned the Punisher into a black guy and then when they turned him into an angel or something like that and everyone mocked them because the Punisher only works when he’s as stripped-down as possible and then Garth Ennis wrote, like, a decade of Punisher comics that every single damned person on the planet except yours truly loves and so maybe, just maybe, Marvel figured out that they probably shouldn’t do anything too stupid with Frank Castle and his so, so adorable killin’ ways? Well, turn to page 45 and behold … SPACE PUNISHER!!!!!

You wanna make something out of it?

No, you haven’t gone insane. Someone at Marvel might have, though. “Frank Castle shoots his way through the criminal hierarchy of outer space starting with the Sym-Brood-ant Queen!” Oh, Marvel. You’re so cute, trying to out-1990s DC. (11 July)

So, were the Marvel PTB sitting around one day at the giant table in the boardroom (the one carved from the bones of baby seals) talking after a fulfilling noontime orgy with Uzbek hookers and hermaphroditic eels and someone said, “You know what we need? More fucking X-books!” and the others looked at him and said, “I like the cut of your jib, son!” and so we get a new iteration of X-Treme X-Men (page 48) which is just a renamed Exiles? I mean, really, Marvel? I even hate to ask this, because I know the answer, but Have you no shame? (25 July)

Julian Totino Tedesco, who’s quite a good artist, is getting some higher-profile gigs, which is nice, as he draws two issues of Uncanny X-Force beginning with issue #28 (page 53). Here’s what’s interesting about the solicit text, though: “Rising star Julian Totino Tedesco joins the best creative team in comics for two issues! [my emphasis]” Now, I’m not questioning the exaggeration – if Marvel wants to believe that UXF has the best creative team in comics, more power to them. But who’s on the team? Remender, obviously. But from looking at my two trades, the only other person who’s been consistent is letterer Cory Petit. So is the “team” the Remender/Petit team? I know they’re just saying that he’s another talented artist working on the book, but saying it’s a creative “team” implies that it’s consistent, and that’s just not true. Still, those issues ought to look nice. But I thought the Tocchini issues would look nice, too, so who knows? (11 July)

Jeph Loeb and Simone Bianchi are back doing a Wolverine story on page 56 with the “long-awaited sequel to EVOLUTION.” Now, I don’t know how the sales were on that comic, but has everyone really been clamoring for a sequel? From what I remember, it was almost universally reviled. Forge on, Marvel! (4 July)

I dare you to find one person who wanted a sequel. Go ahead, I'll wait.

For $125, you can own the Man-Thing Omnibus hardcover on page 68. Man, that’s a lot of coin. It is, however, almost 1200 pages, which is nifty. (3 October)

Spider-Man’s fight with the Juggernaut in Amazing Spider-Man #229-230 gets the hardcover treatment on page 75, which includes a few issues from before those two. Those two issues are really good, so this might be worth the 30 dollars. (3 October)

Fred van Lente and Tom Fowler bring us Hulk: Season One on page 77, as Marvel continues their tentative steps back to original graphic novels. Unlike the delightful Ms. Thompson, I haven’t read the X-Men one yet (I’m catching up, man!), but I’ve liked the look of both of the ones I’ve bought so far. This is a good creative team, so I’ll probably pick this one up. (8 August)

Marvel finally releases the new Daredevil series in trade (page 90), so I can see what all the fuss is about. I haven’t seen as enthusiastic reviews of it recently as the artist merry-go-round continues and the book gets caught up in crossovers, but the first six issues are good, right? (25 July)

Hey, it’s time to check out the back of the book! That’s always fun, right?

Abrams Comicarts brings out a softcover version of Whatever Happened to the World of Tomorrow? on page 236. It’s a pretty good book, but I didn’t love it. If you’re interested but didn’t want to pay for the hardcover, it’s only 15 bucks now!

I’ve liked the first two volumes of Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer, and now we’re getting the third volume from SLG on page 238 … except it’s too big for one book, so “volume 3″ will have “part 1″ and “part 2.” Holy crap, that’s a lot of comic-bookery! Still, these comics are pretty good, so I can deal with it!

Archaia has a collection of both series of The Killer in a fancy hardcover on page 248. The first series is better than the second one, but they’re both pretty good. Unless they just mean the first 10 issues and not “Modus Vivendi,” the sequel. Either way, it’s worth a look.

Tarot: Witch of the Black Rose hits issue #75 on page 266. Four years ago, I bought issue #50 just to see what was what, and I might do it again with #75. Jim Balent is awesome, man. I don’t know how old he is, but if he does Tarot for another 38 years (give or take), he’ll pass Dave Sim in the “one man, one continuous comic” sweepstakes. I hope he does it, so people will have to speak of Tarot in the same reverential tones they use for Cerebus!

Some day she'll fight someone using only her boobs as weapons, and it. will. be. glorious.

Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning – DnA (yuck!) – have a new series from Boom! on page 269 called The Hypernaturals. It’s another superhero series with a cosmic vibe, and Abnett and Lanning seem to do that well, so maybe it will be good. Who knows, right?

I’ve been getting the Planet of the Apes stuff from Boom! in trade, and on page 272 they have Betrayal of the Planet of the Apes, which looks excellent thanks to Gabriel Hardman’s artwork.

I doubt if they'll use this as the trade cover, but it's a nice drawing

Operation: Broken Wings gets a trade on page 274, so you might want to check it out. It’s a pretty good story with nice Trevor Hairsine art, but it’s rather bleak. I mean, it’s about Nazis, so of course, but I’m just warning you!

Tucked down at the bottom of page 299 is Foster #1 from Dog Year Entertainment, which is about a war veteran who becomes the guardian of a boy who’s sought by weird supernatural beings in a world of analog technology (what that has to do with it I don’t know). It’s written by Brian Buccellato and drawn by Noel Tuazon, so it ought to be good! You can already buy issue #1 from Buccellato himself, if you’re so inclined.

I suppose I must always point out when a new Tales Designed to Thrizzle comes out, and issue #8 is coming from Fantagraphics on page 303. I’m not the biggest fan of Michael Kupperman’s humor, but it’s not bad, and these single issues are about the right length for it!

First Second has some interesting comics this month on page 305. Bloody Chester is about a teenager in the Old West – and it sounds like a terribly vile Old West – who’s hired for what appears to be an unpleasant and, you guessed it, bloody job. Meanwhile, Carla Jablonski and Leland Purvis have the third and final volume of Resistance, their comic about teenagers in Nazi-occupied France. The first two books are quite good, so I’m looking forward to this one!

I demand carnage!

Gestalt Comics finally offers Justin Randall’s second volume of Changing Ways, the first volume of which was a nifty little weird horror comic. Randall is a hell of a nice guy, and he makes good comics, so give him your money!

Harvey Pekar has a new book out from Hill & Wang on page 309. It’s called Not the Israel My Parents Promised Me and describes his gradual disillusionment with Israel even as he tells the history of the Jews. According to the solicit, it’s the final memoir of Pekar’s life, but is it his final work? Who knows? This will be the second book (I think) released after his death, so maybe there are others!

Chuck Dixon, who writes testosterone-filled shoot-’em-ups as well as anyone, is one of the writers of Wyatt Earp Vs. The Cisco Kid from Moonstone on page 312. It tells of an encounter between the title characters from both of their points of view. It sounds pretty keen, and the creators aren’t bad at all.

Oni has the first volume of Scott Pilgrim in color on page 316. Nathan Fairbairn has done a nice job on it, but I don’t think it’s worth $25. Yes, it’s a hardcover and yes, there’s some extra material, but man. That’s a lot to plunk down.

I’m a bit of a sucker for steampunk, so Doctor Atlantis on page 322 from Rare Earth Comics piqued my curiosity. A dude on a steam-powered ship explores weird seas fighting monsters. I’m very tempted!

On page 324, there’s a comic called Play-Mate of the Apes from something known as Seduction Cinema Comics. Here’s the solicit text:

Sexy and fearless U.S. astronaut Gaylor (Misty Mundae) and her shipmates crash land on a desolate planet dominated by a tyrannical race of intelligent talking apes, sparking a revolution of untamed and uninhibited female lust that threatens to bring down the repressive ape society … or set it free! This deluxe pack includes the Play-Mate of the Apes comic book and the original Play-Mate of the Apes feature film DVD starring Misty Mundae herself!

Here’s the cover:

Do not - I repeat, DO NOT Google this

Yes, this actually exists. Words fail me.

Titan Books has a trade of Harker, a nifty British police procedural comic starring a rather bizarre DCI. I reviewed this a while back, and it would make a nice trade. The text claims to collect issues #1-4, even though the story is 6 issues. Anyway, there it is. Maybe this means there are more stories of Harker and Critchley in the offing!

I don’t wish to alarm you, but Grimm’s Fairy Tales from Zenescope on page 348 is shipping its 75th issue. Chew on that for a while!

You can't unknow this fact!

Let’s finish up with that choice nugget of news. I hope you get your copies of Previews and dig through them for all the comics you love. Rise up and demand better! ¡Viva la revolución!

54 Comments

Had to stop reading after the casual dismissal of one of the greatest American comics of all time (Concrete) and the condemnation of Chris Roberson for refusing to be another gutless Company Man in desperate search of his next paycheck. The industry has more than enough of those already, thanks.

Paul: I really hope you’re being sarcastic. I have read those three Concrete stories, and I didn’t “dismiss” them, I just said they weren’t my cup of tea. I didn’t hate them, but I didn’t love them, either. Perhaps the longer form Concrete comics are better, but I haven’t read them.

As for the Roberson thing, I know sarcasm is difficult to recognize on the Internet, but if you’ve ever read anything I’ve ever written, you’d know I was joking. I think what Roberson did was pretty danged cool.

Man, I can’t win, can I?

Tom Fitzpatrick

April 27, 2012 at 5:05 pm

Why is it, that the Carol Danvers picture reminds me of Marvelman (or Miracleman)? I simply just cannot put my finger on it.

Have you (or anyone) seen solicitations for John Byrne Fantastic Four Omnibus vol. 2?
I’ve been wondering if Marvel’s going to release this volume anytime soon?

Stupid trivia, but Kraven the Hunter has apparently caught every animal on the planet at least once. And in KLH, he caught Spider-Man and buried him alive. He killed himself after there was no more game to hunt in the world.

Personally, I would have went after Galactus next.

As to sarcasm, I think Tom’s being sarcastic on the Captain Marvel thing, but I can’t tell with him.

I’m dismissing you for not liking Concrete also, but that’s just because I don’t like you in general.

I will be looking at this more in depth later, but as to the one man one comic race, Tarot and Balent are way behind Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo is 200 +, I think) and Erik Larsen (Dragon’s at, what, 180 or so?). But yes, that would be a thing to behold — massively long one man one comic runs? Cerebus, Usagi, Dragon, Tarot!

Also, Dean White has colored all but one issue of UXF. He’s the unsung hero of that book, and I actually do like that Marvel would compliment like that. He’s one of the best in the business, and he gives most of the different artists on UXF a consistent, cohesive feel.

‘Cept for Greg’s Otherworld artwork, which was…unfortunate.

As to Jeremy’s first comment, if Kraven gave up just because he caught Spidey, in the Marvel U, that’s settling for low standards, huh?

And upon further review, I realize I should point out that saying that Cerebus is a one man one comic is doing a grave disservice to the work of Gerhard, who was on the book for…234 issues, iirc. But we’ll add into that long run list Groo (by Evanier and Aragones, around 150 issues, and lettered by Sakai, so he’s just a workhorse, man!), and nods to the long runs on Ult Spidey by Bendis and Bagley and Stan and Jack on FF. Marathoners all!

Interesting how most of those books have quite cartoony art.

Anyway…

I can’t believe you didn’t note this, even just to twit me about it. I was probably more delighted about seeing that than Bill Reed was about seeing AXE COP. There’s also some very interesting-looking Lone Ranger books coming, including one from Chuck Dixon, who’s born to write that sort of thing. Another thumbs-up on Planet of the Apes from BOOM, too. Good stuff so far.

And John Shirley is quite a bit more than the “co-screenwriter of the Crow movie.” He’s written a number of very cool SF novels as well as one of the better Batman prose originals, Dead White. And he was also the lead singer of Sado-Nation in Portland back in the late 1970s when we were both younger and drunker. (That last doesn’t really have anything to do with the writing, but it amuses me that those videos are out there. You really CAN find everything on the internet now.) I don’t know that it means he’s going to do a great Crow or not, but I’m not willing to dismiss it out of hand.

All the comics in July are gonna make me broke. Axe Cop, Casanova TP, Daredevil TP, Mudman TP, Bucko HC. Might have to pick up Harker, too. And I’m totally going to buy The Judas Coin, because it is a graphic novel written *and* drawn by Walter Simonson, and it stars Batman *and* motherfuckin’ Manhunter 2070.

I would say pass on the Swamp Thing collection. As I believe Sterling put it, it takes forever for the book to decide whether to swamp or get off the pot.

Marvel should only do stupid things with the Punisher. Let me tell you about my pitches for Punisher vs. Dracula and Frank Castle: Time Punisher some day.

I totally Googled it, by the way.

Tom: No, I haven’t seen anything about a John Byrne FF Omnibus 2. In fact, I didn’t even know a first one existed!

Jeremy: “Killing” Spider-Man is the only success he’s ever had in comics, right? I mean, we can be TOLD that he’s a great hunter, but that could just be his own PR campaign!

I also looked at the trades I own for Uncanny X-Force. According to them, Matthew Wilson colored issues #5-7. I wouldn’t have forgotten White, because, as you know, I’ve been getting more into coloring, so I’ve been paying more attention to them!

Bill: Yeah, it’s a good month, isn’t it? And all I can do is warn you – your fate is in your own hands!

Ah, you’re right Greg. Dean White has colored all 9 Opena issues, most of the one-shots, and the vast majority of Greg Tochinni/Mark Brooks issues. Opena is amazing, but Dean White really brings it to another level.

http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lr0ouoafUh1qmszi0o1_1280.jpg

Oh, I have “Dancing Queen” stuck in my head now!!!

WHY DO YOU DO THIS TO ME??!!??

I’m already screwy from you posting this a day early, and now ABBA?

OTOH, I’ll be picking up Punk Rock Jesus in singles, because it sounds muthafuggin’ awesome.

One of your best columns

Aren’t comics great?

Just curious here, how is it that you still like Glee? What is there to like about it? I gave up after the 2nd season finale (where it appeared to be turning into a CW show with musical numbers). I love Lea Michele, but I feel that Glee has become way too excruciating to watch for her alone.

Btw I grew up reading the 1990s X-Men, and didn’t realize they were “terrible” until recently. To be honest, I just can’t see them as terrible…. I even have the Gambit mini-series!

Glad to see Ivan is gone. That joke went from funny to played out in the span of one article.

Wasn’t interested in Ms. Marvel until I read a few interviews by DeConnick, who clearly has a lot of passion for the project. And hey, good female writer on the only solo female ongoing in the entire bloody Marvel line. Also, the cover didn’t originally look like that; Carol just had short hair….but then it got adjusted into that horrid faux-hawk after the outcry over the short hair. Which, of course, only made it worse.

Tom Fitzpatrick

April 27, 2012 at 8:44 pm

@ T.P.: What you’re talking about!?! Me, sarcastic? Never. Sardonic, Ironic, Snarky, sure, but not sarcastic.
I keep remembering Miraclewoman back when she was drawn by John Totleban and then later by Mark Buckingham. Carol Danvers (as the new Captain Marvel) seemed similar to Miraclewoman back then.

@Tom, I figured you’d heard about the new Captain Marvel, and how the assumption is that Marvel is trying for a Miracleman look (while poking DC for the Captain Marvel name) with this. It seems like it’s deliberate on their part, to evoke that look in readers’ minds. (It’s Totleben, btw)

I think Jamie McKelvie designed the new Captain Marvel, but I don’t know that he included the fauxhawk. Could just be the angle. (And after tweaking Tom for a misspelling, I’m not sure if I spelled McKelvie’s first name right.)

Holy crap, I will be buying the hell out of The Judas Coin. Who even knows what the history of the DC universe even is anymore, but it sounds right up my alley anyway. National Comics sounds intriguing too. And Axe Cop and Poyo–heck yeah!

Your casual dismissal of The Walking Dead will force me to burn the internet to the ground. You’ve forced my hand, sir. Personally, I love the series. It’s like a really good zombie movie that just keeps going, weigh its cast waxing and waning as people die off and they meet new people on their travels. Just like Dorothy in Oz, only, you know, with zombies killing everyone from time to time.

Speaking of casual dismissal, I’m glad Liefeld is on Grifter now, because I don’t give a damn about that character.

The hair’s a little weird, but I’m just glad Carol kept the Cockrum sash.

Clearly that Wolverine & the X-Men cover is pixellated because Kitty’s being wooed by a giant penis.

Hi mr Burgas,

Ive been reading your posts on this blog for almost three years now and considering the level of disdain you seem to have for anything Big2 related, it might be time to give up comics. Seriously, is there anything Marvel or DC does nowadays that inspires more than base level snark in you?

Ayup, his kind’s just not welcome in Comicstown.

Mind you, he mentioned some stuff that interested him from them, but don’t let the facts stop you or anything.

…considering the level of disdain you seem to have for anything Big2 related, it might be time to give up comics….

I wouldn’t presume to speak for the other Greg– but this just stopped me in my tracks. Your idea that “Big2″ equals ALL COMICS… really? Think that through a little. That’s like me saying, “This dumb thing Disney did is annoying the crap out of me… might be time for me to give up movies.”

The fact that you can probably get the entire monthly North American readership of current Marvel and DC superhero comics into a good-sized football stadium has very little relevance to the world of COMICS, as a WHOLE. As far as I can tell, given the huge bookstore presence of archival newspaper comics and vintage humor comics and manga and historical studies and original graphic novels, not to mention the explosion of webcomics into the national consciousness over the last five years… and all that alongside the easy availability of OLDER Marvel and DC books from the 1940s to now… honestly, if Greg doesn’t like the current offerings from the big two, well, I think he probably could still manage to find some comics to read.

Except, too, that he likes a lot of non-big 2 stuff, which means he should not give up comics.

Unless you somehow think that it isn’t “comics” if it’s not got a guy in spandex underpants in it?

Actually, I think it’s just another vote for Ivan to come back.

@buttler: if you’re right on that Wolvey and the XMen cover, does that mean that it’s a very special dickesode? Or that there’ll be dick in the kitty? (I’m sorry on that one. I went for the crude.)

Greg: Regarding Mr. Shirley – I bow to your knowledge of his bibliography! My point is that I think The Crow really doesn’t have legs to be this much of a franchise, but perhaps its creator can do something with it, and I’m not really interested in anyone, frankly, even trying to do anything with it. It seems such a singular thing that I don’t even know if O’Barr can come up with something good, to be honest.

Amateur Reader (Tom): When I Googled “Synge” to see if it had a weird meaning I didn’t know, I saw that dude. I decided I didn’t know enough about him to make a joke about him.

Travis: At least it’s not Unskinny Bop! And my wife wasn’t feeling great this week, so I didn’t watch television on Wednesday night (we usually watch together, and she went to bed), which allowed me to get my reviews done that night instead of Thursday. So everyone got shifted a bit forward. Sorry to mess up your schedule!

Trey: Thank you, sir.

Oz: Well, I like the musical numbers – they’re usually really well done. I don’t like Rachel and Finn’s romance, which is unfortunately the main focus of the students’ lives, but I think they’ve done a very good job with Brittany and Santana’s relationship, Kurt and Blaine’s relationship, Kurt’s relationship with his dad and Finn, and Quinn and her problems. In fact, the only relationships I don’t like are Rachel and Finn’s and Will and Emma’s – which of course are the two main ones. They’ve also eased off on Sue Sylvester this season, because a little Sue goes a long way. It’s certainly a melodramatic show, but I appreciate that it tries to do some different things with soap operas.

Alex: Man, that’s just dumb. Why can’t she have short hair?

buttler: I don’t know – zombie stuff doesn’t really interest me, and the first 12 issues just didn’t grab me. I’m joking a bit about nothing ever happening, mainly because the first part of Season 2 of the show was spent wandering around the woods looking for that girl. Jesus, move it along, people! Then, when they picked it up in the second half, Lori became the worst person in the world. Another reason I’m a bit wary about it is because I’ve heard rumors that Kirkman will write it until they pry his cold, dead hands off his keyboard, and I really do want my stories to end. I do get the appeal, but it just doesn’t do anything for me.

At: Wow. Just … wow.

@Greg: well, people didn’t like that cover when it first came out….and then there was a response of sorts in which Jamie McKelvie released a concept piece (as he was the one who designed the new look) that showed that her hair was not THAT short and was…shaggier? Messier?

Anyway, the McKelvie piece looked great and was well-received….so I guess Marvel told McGuinness to go back and fiddle around with his previous cover to make the hair more in line with McKelvie’s look. And….we got…this?

At this point, I don’t even know what Carol’s hair is going to look like. Short pixie/boy cut? The shoulder length look McKelvie had going on? Or…*shudder*….the faux-hawk.

It’s not like this is a particularly huge issue or anything, I just find it kind of funny how Marvel have been fumbling around about it.

FunkyGreenJerusalem

April 27, 2012 at 11:55 pm

Marvel finally releases the new Daredevil series in trade (page 90), so I can see what all the fuss is about. I haven’t seen as enthusiastic reviews of it recently as the artist merry-go-round continues and the book gets caught up in crossovers, but the first six issues are good, right? (25 July)

You got it right!
The first seven are golden. It’s a shame #7 isn’t included as it was a nice little heart-warmer that would wrap the book up nicely.
But with number 8 you get the second part of a crossover with a guest artist – it was alright though – then an average two parter, then a Khoi Pham trying to Palo Riveria issue then the second part of a crossover.
It just took the non-stop, no questions asked joy out of the book, and reminded you that Marvel just don’t give a shit about quality – Tommy B and Stevie W say they do until they are blue in the face, but then go and do stuff that shows otherwise – and that there’s no where to go where you can get a nice little standalone book like you used to be able to.

Wolverine and the X-Men #14 (page 11): Really, Marvel? We’re pixellating covers now?

Well, if it’s a big cock monster waving a cock with flowers attached to it in Kitty’s face, it’s for the best they pixellated it. Think of the kiddies who could, but won’t, go in a comic shop and see it!
Just be thankful it’s not drawn by Greg Land, or her mouth would be open!

But squinting tells me it’s either War Machine, or a naked Colossus (with flowers attached to his cock). The looks on everyone’s faces seems to suggest the latter.

Ah, read the piece finally. Good stuff. If ABBA is #2, is Marillon #1?

Is that Rex Mundi omni the original Image issues, or from the start of the DH run?

Wait, the Superman books are all about his CLOTHES now? They’re going to tug on his cape, aren’t they?

Judas Coin. Yes Please. That is muthafuggin’ BAT LASH on the cover!

Absolute m-f Final Crisis new g-d pages…. grrr!

As to new Crow stuff, they already have done a fair amount of spinoffs after the first movie (which has 2 or 3 sequels, one of which with Edward Furlong and some actress). Kitchen Sink, I think, did a couple of bad minis (although they were by John Wagner, early Alex Maleev, Charlie Adlard, and some other people, so they should have been better), and McFarlane had a Crow series for a while. Plus, the Crow/Razor crossover. Y’know, Razor. She must have had nude cover variants. The ads in the back of the C/R #2 had nekkid ladies in it.

I won’t even get into the Walking Dead TV show, but damn, Lori is dumb. Like you said, the second half of season 2 made her horribler. (Otherwise, I liked the second half pretty well.) Like in the first ep back, where Rick and Glenn go off, and Lori tries to get Daryl to go after them before going off herself like a dumbass. And for what reason? They didn’t even make it to the end of the long driveway on the farm, for chrissakes!!! And there are mothers who watch their kids more closely now, pre-zombie apocalypse, then Lori watches Carl. I liked that meme you linked to a few weeks back. (I totally went into it after saying I wouldn’t, huh?)

I’d totally buy AVX Kill Yr Television.

Re: Scarlet Spider — I’d say Tom Palmer by himself is legendary, but as nice a guy as Khoi Pham is (I met him last year in Boston, y’know), he’s not at legendary status yet. Plus, Tom Palmer Jr’s column in Wizard was the best thing about that mag in the 90s. I think that’s where I first knew of Ted McKeever, and I loves me some McKeever, so yay to Tom Palmer Jr!

As to the hair and all, I’d say There’s Something About Captain Marvel.

Space Punisher has Tex art, so it not all bad!

ooh, what’s in that Man-Thing omni? And 1200 pages? That IS a Giant Size Man-Thing! (Man, if they had a sense of humor, they’d totally call it that!)

I liked volume 1 of Resistance (haven’t gotten 2 out from the liberry yet), and Leland Purvis’s Pubo is a cute little story.

@Oz — somehow, not only do I have the Gambit mini, but I have, like, 4! copies of issue 4. I think it was multipacks from Toys R Us in the late 90s or something.

As to Kraven, wasn’t Ultimate Kraven’s thing that he just claimed to be a great hunter, but it was just a PR thing to promote his reality show, or something?

Funky’s “with flowers attached to his cock” is a thing (ahem…) of poetry. Boom, yummy!

“Has the Gibbons/Rude World’s Finest from 1990 never been collected before?”

Yes, it has, at least twice. I’ve had a trade paperback in the past and now own a deluxe oversized hardcover. I presume this is just a new printing in paperback.

Oz the Malefic

April 28, 2012 at 6:56 am

I swaer they modelled Rorschach on the Leo Strut picture….

Francis Dawson

April 28, 2012 at 8:23 am

Another posthumous Harvey Pekar comic? He’s the comics Tupac.

John Lewis, Jr.

April 28, 2012 at 8:30 am

“One of the comics that a tiny percentage of the comics-reading public doesn’t want to set on fire and shove up Joey Q’s urethra continues!”

That was funny as hell, man.

“that dumb Justice League comic where Mark Millar had Superman disband the league just as Amazo was about to kick their asses but instead was rendered inert. It made no fucking sense! ”

YES. THIS.

FGJ: It’s odd they didn’t include #7 in the trade, especially if it’s a good wrap-up. Marvel is committed to 6-issue trades, man!

Travis: Of course Marillion is #1!

As Rex Mundi is creator-owned, when Nelson moved to Dark Horse, he brought the old stuff with him. Dark Horse already reprinted the old Image trades with a consistent trade dress with the stuff originally published by them. That’s a long way of saying that, yes, this is the Image stuff. I’m fairly sure it’s ALL the Image stuff, and all the Dark Horse stuff will be in volume 2.

I did buy the second Crow series, with Alex Maleev on art, but then gave up on it. Yes, they should have been better. Too bad they weren’t!

Rich: I thought it had been. I guess this is for those people who missed it!

Oz: Damn, that’s perfect. I totally forgot about the Leo Strut, or I would have linked to it. Well done, sir!

John: I can be funny every once in a while!

Jacob: Dang, that was a dumb issue, wasn’t it?

likeliest guess; the pixelated date on the Wolverine & the X-Men cover is Iceman, since that’s been hinted at all series.

For AvX, I’d guess the implied basis for “No More Avengers” is that Cyclops might have the Phoenix Force on his side. Though it would almost be worth the trainwreck to see Marvel use its other reality-altering option, with Cyclops making a deal with Mephisto to undo the Avengers.

Ms. Marvel does look like she is sporting a fauxhawk in that picture.

And technically Kraven doesn’t have to successfully hunt anything to be “the world’s deadliest hunter”, he just needs stuff to die a lot. He could just be a really abysmal hunter with a high body count.

We get it. You like indie comics. Thats not a groundbreaking stance. But really, the belittling of everything Big 2 is getting to be a broken record. If you’re that jaded, hey, how about just not mentioning them?

At: Because it’s fun! Well, maybe not for you. But I love to see what ridiculous statements about their comics Marvel and DC can come up with every month! It feeds my utter superiority complex and allows me to feel better about myself because I have nothing else in my life except contempt for superhero comics. Yes, that’s it.

I trust that when I write about how good X-Factor or Thunderbolts or Batman, Incorporated is, those don’t “count” as superhero comics? Or when I order that Daredevil trade, it’s because Mark Waid is really my father and I need to support his comics? And I love independent comics so much that I never make fun of, say, Tarot. Or The Walking Dead. Oh, wait, I did that in this very post.

But you’re right. I belittle everything Marvel and DC put out. I’m glad you set me straight before I pre-ordered that awesome Simonson superhero graphic novel starring Batman and Manhunter. We wouldn’t want me to support something good that they offer just because I think “Synge” is a stupid name for a bad guy!

-Agreed 100% on the Space Punisher thing. I facepalmed the moment that was announced. Why on Earth did anyone think this was a good idea? Clearly, lessons have not been learned.

-again, agree with you on the X-Force thing. We just got the Remender/McKone team announced…and now? I think this is a product of Marvel’s irritating as hell new double-shipping strategy. UxF has been a book that’s been double-shipped A LOT since the beginning of this strategy and I think the artist merry-go-round is the result of that.

-I’m going to gently broach the “Greg hates all things Big Two” discussion. All I can say is that I’ve noticed in this article, and in some of your past ones, that you don’t really seem to focus on many of the critically praised/generally beloved Big Two titles.

Where are Hickman’s Fantastic Four titles? Journey into Mystery? Daredevil? Punisher? Wolverine and the X-Men is here, but only so you could poke fun at the admittedly dumb looking pixellated image.

Over at DC, how about Swamp Thing, Animal Man, Batman, Wonder Woman, Demon Knights, etc?

Is this because
1. You’ve chosen not to focus on the positives?
2. For whatever reason, you’ve just not read any of these books?
3. You’ve read those books and thought they weren’t very good?

I don’t know, it’s your article, so you do with it what you wish, but it seems that when it comes to your take on the Big Two, there’s less a focus on pointing out things that look cool and more a focus on snark in pointing out how stupid some of the solicitation text is.

It is well worth your while to read every Concrete story ever. Trust me.

Paladin King: Those are fair points. I’ve decided that since DC and Marvel have made it so easy to switch to trades (both of them with their price points, but DC with the reboot), that’s what I’ve done. That’s why I don’t say much about the titles that get more praise, because I haven’t read them yet. I mentioned Daredevil because I’ve been waiting for the softcover trade, and I mentioned Swamp Thing because I’ve heard some mixed things about it and I’m not sure if I’m going to buy it or not. I may have missed a Journey into Mystery softcover trade (I know the hardcover already came out), but if it does show up, I will write about that.

The problem with a lot of what DC and Marvel do is that everyone already knows about them. I’ll point out #1 issues – Captain Marvel, for instance – but I doubt if anyone needs me to point out that issue #11 of a series is coming out. When there’s a creative team shift, I might mention it, but again, I’m so far behind that I don’t know how the book has been doing so far, so I’m not sure if a new creative team is a good thing or a bad thing. I don’t mention a lot of Image/Dark Horse/Boom!/Dynamite/Oni books that have been going for a while, either, because I don’t want to mention the same books every month – buy Chew! buy BPRD! buy Wasteland! With DC and Marvel, it’s even more silly to do that. Usually I just skim through their sections looking for absolutely wacky shit that they’re writing, and then when I get to the trades, that’s when I slow down and look for things that might interest me. Believe me, DC is starting to release more trades of the DCnU, so I’ll probably be mentioning them more in the coming months, asking for advice about which trades I should get. I’m picking up the Animal Man trade that’s out this week, and I’m sure I’ll get more. But because I’m not buying as many single issues, I don’t write about them as much.

I hope that answers your question. Yes, I do go on, don’t I?

Roman: Damn it. Like I need more comics to read!!!!! :)

I find that if your column isn’t exactly what I want out of a comics column, I should tell you your column is dumb, and not just find something more up to my speed. Because it’s your fault.

OMG, I was in the grocery store this morning, and what’s on the PA, but “Dancing Queen”!!!???!!! AH!!!! You have control over the store music, don’t you?!

Unless…

There WAS no PA, and it was all in my head!

AAAAHHHHH!!!!!

BOPBOPBOPBOP!!!!!

Wow Greg, you really can’t win, can you? Next week with what I bought, you should buy every single comic released that week and give all of them ten stars. And for the totally airwolf panels, you should just include every panel in every book, to make sure you’re reiterating how awesome they all are.

Anyways, I see no one has answered your Swamp Thing question yet, so allow me…

The answer is… I think?

There are a few ways to go with this. First of all, it’s worth you getting the trade for the art alone. Paquette has truly entered the J.H. Williams III stratosphere and absolutely has to be discussed anytime someone makes a “Top 5 (vaguely) monthly comic artists right now” list. His work on Swamp Thing is consistently blowing me away, and the fill-in guy that does about 40% of the series, Marco Rudy, does such a good Paquette impersonation that I somehow can’t even tell who’s doing the art without reading the credits.

Secondly, as I know you’re someone who’s read a pretty extensive amount of Swamp Thing comics, I think this new series succeeds in fitting in with the character’s niche. It pulls in a lot of elements of Swampy’s history, and the series (for better or worse) feels meant for people that have read a lot of Swamp Thing. And I mean this in a semi-good away as opposed to a Geoff Johns kinda way.

As for the actual story, I do like it. I think some issues are definitely stronger than others. I thought the first issue was just so so, I really loved the second and third issues, then it got kind of lukewarm for a bit before #6, which was awful. Issue 6 felt like 4 pages worth of story stretched to 20, and it represented everything that makes me mad in comics today. But then #7 was phenomenal. If anything, the series will probably read better in trade. I do think Scott Snyder has a grand story to tell, and he’s set it up well, even if his specific strategy in setting it up hasn’t always worked for me. But Snyder looks to be writing for the longterm, and he seems to be setting up a big Swamp Thing epic that has a lot of potential.

Plus, there’s a big crossover with Animal Man looming, and that’s one of DC’s best books. And really, you can’t say enough about Paquette’s art.

So yes, I do think you should get the trade, even if I can’t give the series my full endorsement. But it’s a pretty good and intriguing work in progress that is meant for Swamp Thing readers and is always nice to look at.

One thing that annoys me– I have absolutely no idea how much, and what parts, of Swampy’s prior continuity is supposed to carry over to this series. All of it? Parts? Which parts? One of the many things I hate about this faux-boot is that all 52 titles seem to have a different percentage of carried over continuity. DC desperately needs a “zero issue month” just so each series can take a breath and say “okay, here’s the five year history, here’s what has happened, here’s what we’re starting from.” Because trying to figure it out is fucking infuriating. I love the Flash, it’s one of my favorite books right now, but how did Barry discover the Speed Force? He never knew what it was in the old DC, that was all Wally. Considering how much DC mortgaged their entire future on this thing, they could have planned it a little better. Really, 4 Robins in a 5-year Batman history? That’s not a sidekick, it’s an internship.

@Third Man: Swamp Thing sounds interesting, so maybe I’ll look at it.

“Really, 4 Robins in a 5-year Batman history? That’s not a sidekick, it’s an internship.”

Nice one!

But as to the zero issue thing, the semi-confirmed rumor is that there will be zero issues at the one year mark (bet. 12 and 13, I guess) that will tell something about the origins. So hopefully it will clear it up for people who care.

Which obviously doesn’t include Burgas, as he’s a damnfool indie fan.

Jake Earlewine

April 29, 2012 at 5:18 am

Greg, what a fine column this week. Even though most of the comics in this Previews appear mediocre, your column was entertaining.

Keep up the great work!

A caveat, though — using sarcasm is asking to be misunderstood. Sarcasm is dysfunctional communication. Why say something you DON’T mean, and expect readers to ignore what you actually said? Do you see the craziness inherent in that? There will always be readers who don’t know when you’re being sarcastic. What purpose does that serve?

Speak the truth at all times. Speak with sincerity. It’s good for your soul.

@At: We get it. You like the Big Two’s comics. Thats not a groundbreaking stance. But really, the belittling of everything Burgas writes is getting to be a broken record. If you’re that jaded, hey, how about just not reading them?

Also, @buttler, Kitty’s been wooed by a giant, sometimes hard, sometimes soft Peter for a long time now.

I think Jake’s being sarcastic, but I’m not sure.

I met Dave Sim once and I said, Dave, just between you and me, how old is Jim Balent and he said Jim Balent is a hundred and thirty-seven years old! A HUNDRED AND THIRTY-SEVEN YEARS OLD!!!!

Snarky comments about books you’ll never read. More contempt for comics,Yay!

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