SPIDER-MANDATE: The Lowe-down on "Secret Wars," Tie-Ins and Stacey Lee
Man, I’ve been doing this for six years. Has it helped any of you find new comics you’d otherwise miss? Well, I hope so. Do I get grief every time I do it? Of course! But I’m a masochist, so let’s check out the two hundred eighty-sixth edition of Previews and see what we can find! Yeeeeeee-ha!
On page 38, we find The Shaolin Cowboy Adventure Magazine … trade paperback. It has stuff by Andrew Vachss, Geof Darrow, and Gary Gianni, and it’s prose with illustrations, if you’re anticipating comics. But it’s a pretty cool idea. (24 October)
I’ve always tried to get into Nexus and have usually failed – something about it just doesn’t click for me. On page 41, the Nexus Omnibus volume 1 is offered in trade for 25 bucks, collecting the first 14 issues. Maybe this time I’ll love it? (28 November)
Three issues of Kristian Donaldson, and already there’s a new artist on The Massive (page 43). I’m trying to recall if Wood told me this was the plan, but I can’t. I don’t mind it if it’s planned and it’s a different story arc (like what’s happening with Wood’s Conan), but I do get a bit annoyed by this. I don’t know if Garry Brown is any good, but I’m willing to check it out! (12 September)
Speaking of Conan, Vasilis Lolos draws issue #8 (page 45). Whenever I see Lolos’ name, I must write about how I pine for The Last Call volume 2. Will it ever arrive?
The fourth hardcover volume of B.P.R.D. shows up on page 58. Damn, I love these giant hardcovers. They’re awesome. (7 November)
If you missed the single issues, Ragemoor – a story about a living castle – is offered on page 61. I’m sure it looks nice, because it’s Richard Corben, but I don’t know if the story is any good. (7 November)
Howard Chaykin’s Marked Man is offered in hardcover on page 68. This is the entire story from Dark Horse Presents #1-8, and this is how I’d like them to do these kinds of things – tell the entire story in DHP, and then offer it as a trade. Marked Man is not bad, although I suppose how much you like it will depend on how much you think Chaykin’s lost it over the past decade or so. (21 November)
Say what you want about Before Watchmen, but that’s a super cover (page 78, 5 September):
You’ll notice that with all the crap that people have (rightfully) been heaping on Guillem March’s cover for Catwoman #0, every single one of these is labeled as “not final cover.” I’ll be interested to see what actually shows up on the shelves!
As I believe Caleb pointed out, the debut of Talon #0 (page 82) means that fully one-quarter of the DCnU is made up of Batman-related books. I didn’t check his math, but goddamn, that’s a lot, isn’t it? According to my retailer, they’re all selling well. Why aren’t they ALL Batman books, then? Huh, DC? (26 September)
I’m a bit stunned that DC hired Christy Marx to write Sword of Sorcery, starring Amethyst (page 84). I mean, Marx is a chick, she’s not a comics person, and she actually has experience writing chick stuff (like Jem). Well done, DC.
Batman: The Dark Knight #0 (page 102): “Meet Joe Chill and explore the epic conspiracy to wipe out the Wayne family!” Really, DC? Didn’t the Bat-books just get done with some “epic conspiracy”? Wouldn’t it be a lot more fun if whoever was running this conspiracy bumped into some of those Owl dudes and said, “Hey, what are you conspiring to do?” and the Owl dudes said, “Oh, we’re just turning the city against Batman” and the first dude said, “Oh, shit, well, we’re just conspiring to wipe out the Wayne family” and the Owl dudes said, “Hey, as long as you stay out of our way, we’ll stay out of yours” and they all share Old Milwaukees before going on their way? That would be awesome. (26 September)
The Flash gets a hardcover on page 127. I’ll be waiting for the softcover, but this is one of the few series I’m really looking forward to.
Speaking of trades I’m looking forward to, All-Star Western volume 1 is there on page 128. I will be buying this!
Fables: Werewolves of the Heartland is resolicited on page 140. Holy crap, when was that first offered? [Looks it up] June 2011? Shit, I hope it’s ready now! (14 November)
I probably won’t get Spaceman in hardcover, but there it is on page 144. Now I only have to wait a year before it comes out in softcover! (7 November)
Andy Diggle and Mark Buckingham are doing a new Doctor Who series on page 157. Doctor Who is one of those characters that I very much doubt I will ever care about, but that’s not a bad creative team. Who knows how long they will last on the book?
Womanthology: Space shows up on page 161. Much like the hardcover, this is an all-woman anthology, this time focusing on … space! I know, shocking. I don’t know if I’m going to get the single issues or the trade, but I’m sure it will be nifty!
For 60 bucks, you can pick up Woodwork, a hardcover “American edition of a museum catalogue that accompanied a gigantic career retrospective on display in De Palma, Spain in 2010″ of Wally Wood’s artwork. That has to be cool-looking, right?
Grant Morrison finally has the balls to write something that’s not published by DC or Marvel with Happy! on page 186. It sounds … Morrison-esque, I’ll give it that. (26 September)
I’ve heard good things about Alex de Campi’s Valentine, which is offered on page 198. Two soldiers lost in the Russian winter in 1812 are hunted by monsters, who have their own agenda. De Campi is a pretty good writer, and this sounds keen. (5 September)
Joe Casey and Nathan Fox’s Haunt is finally out in trade on page 201. Will it be out on 12 September? I won’t hold my breath!
So in anticipation of the next Avengers movie, which won’t come out for at least two years, and a possible Guardians of the Galaxy movie, which will come out next summer at the earliest, Bendis writes a Thanos story in Avengers Assemble #7 (page 11). Chad Nevett will be reading that eagerly, as he loves whenever anyone else except Jim Starlin writes Thanos!!!! (12 September)
Big Hero 6 gets collected on page 37. I assume it’s one of those digest-sized trades, because it’s only 9 dollars. I wonder why Marvel is collecting it now? (5 September)
Avengers Vs. X-Men gets a $75-hardcover on page 65. I won’t be buying this, but it’s something like 22 issues for that price, and from what I’ve seen, the art is gorgeous. I’d think about buying it if Marvel took out all the words and just sold it as an art book. (7 November)
Robert Eddleman pointed out a couple of weeks ago that Emanuela Lupacchino is drawing the next Castle graphic novel, and it shows up on page 68. Damn, that’s really tempting, because Lupacchino is really, really good. (17 October)
Marvel does something interesting that I’m sure they’ve done before, but I still think is cool: On page 71, they have the third volume of Daredevil in hardcover, and it collects the crossover with Spider-Man and Punisher. On page 78, they have the second volume of Rucka’s Punisher series in trade, and it … collects the crossover with Spider-Man and Daredevil. Apparently the crossover was terrible, but at least if you were only reading one of the titles, you can get it in the trade of your choice. I guess it sucks if you plan to read both titles, but what are you gonna do? (19 and 12 September, respectively)
Even though Marvel is stupidly putting four (only 4?!?!?) issues in their X-trades, I really want to get Wolverine and the X-Men on page 81. You’re not making it easy, Marvel!!!! Four issues, really? (24 October)
It’s the third Journey Into Mystery trade in two months on page 83. Sheesh, Marvel, what’s the deal? I’m getting all three, but that seems a bit odd. (17 October)
I got the Young Avengers trades lo those many years ago and enjoyed them. Should I get The Children’s Crusade (page 84)? I heard both really good things and really bad things about it. What say the commenters? (10 October)
Has the wedding of Scott and Jean ever been collected? Beats me, but it is now, on page 99. If it were me, I’d call it something like “the marriage that Scott tossed aside to get it on with a hussy yet we’re still supposed to admire him” trade, but I guess that’s why I’m not in charge of marketing at Marvel. (19 September)
It’s time once again to journey past the normal stuff and head to the back of the book. You can do it!
I haven’t gotten around to reading Princeless yet, but if Kelly Thompson is to be believed, everyone ought to be reading it! So there’s a new anthology book on page 232 called Princeless: Short Stories for Warrior Women from Action Lab Entertainment. It’s Kid Friendly! I’m a bit more interested in Jeremy Whitley’s other book right below it, The Order of Dagonet, which is about a bunch of misfit knights defending England from mythological creatures. You could always buy them both!
Archaia continues to shift away from single issues, as they don’t offer the new volume of The Killer in that format, going straight to the collected edition on page 241. The second story wasn’t quite as good as the first, but I’m still picking this up, because it’s a good series.
Over on page 276, Dynamite continues to go retro with Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #1. I’m sure someone can explain to me why he’s no longer a DC character!
Leah Moore and John Reppion, who aren’t a bad writing team, also have a new book from Dynamite called Damsels on page 279. It’s about various fairy-tale heroines fighting to protect their kingdoms, and the idea of proto-feminist fairy-tale heroines has been done to death, but as usual, it’s all in the execution. Of course, just because it’s a proto-feminist comic book doesn’t mean they can’t get our man J. Scott Campbell to sell it!
Noah van Sciver has a new book from Fantagraphics called The Hypo: The Melancholic Young Lincoln (page 302). I don’t know if it’s any good; I just like to mention Noah van Sciver when I can, because I can’t quite wrap my brain around the fact that he’s Ethan van Sciver’s younger brother.
Hope Larson draws an adaptation of A Wrinkle in Time on page 304 from Farrar, Straus and Giroux. I’m sure it will look very neat.
I’m not a huge fan of Raina Telgemeier (she’s very talented, don’t get me wrong, but I’m not interested in the subjects about which she writes), but if you are, she has a new book, Drama, on page 307 from Graphix. It’s about a middle-school girl and her attempts to navigate a theater production that is rife with, you guessed it, drama. If that’s your thing, there it is!
Legendary Comics has a project I actually want to buy, as The Tower Chronicles volume 1: Geisthawk shows up on page 312. This is the Matt Wagner/Simon Bisley book that’s been in the works at least since last summer, and I’m keen to check it out. The actual idea – a bounty hunter who hunts monsters – is only decent, but with those two guys working on it, I must check it out!!!!!
So the one hundredth issue of The Tick featured Invincible, and on page 315, we get The Tick #101: Tick Meets Madman from New England Comics. These might be blatant cash grabs by Benito Cereno, but I’m sure it will be a good comic!
I really don’t know if I want to spend 50 bucks on Building Stories by Chris Ware (page 316, Pantheon), but I’m afraid that if I don’t, Brian might reach through the computer screen and throttle me. HE HAS THAT POWER!!!!!
In the Oni section, we find … Stumptown?!?!? Holy crap, it’s a new Stumptown on page 320! Huzzah! Happy day! (12 September)
Meanwhile, on page 321, The Sixth Gun #25 is solicited. It claims Brian Hurtt is the artist, but the cover lists Tyler Crook. I think it’s probably the latter, but that’s a bit annoying. (25 September)
Man, The Simon and Kirby Library: Science-Fiction HC from Titan Books on page 332 is calling my name. Damn you, Titan Books!
On page 335, Transfuzion Publishing offers Inferno: A Sleep and a Forgetting by Mike Carey and Michael Gaydos. It’s about the only guy to escape from Hell and live, but he doesn’t remember that. I’ve never been a huge fan of Carey, but I don’t hate his work, either, so I might have to check this out, especially because Gaydos is, you know, good.
Neal Adams’ Monsters is offered on page 336 from Vanguard Productions. This is an old serial that’s been digitally re-colored (not necessarily a good sign!), but I wonder about it. Is it Batshit Insane Adams? That actually might be worth it for the sheer weirdness factor. Has anyone read this already?
You know, thank God Zenescope saw the void in the comics universe from the lack of a sexy, female Robin Hood and remedied that with Robyn Hood #1 on page 354. I know you wondered about that hole in your life, and now it can be filled!
Nothing is going to top the sheer genius of making Robin Hood a sexy, scantily-clad heroine, so let’s end there. As always, have fun finding the goodies in the giant slab of comics! Or, if you want the more … esoteric, you can hop on over to Mike Sterling’s blog for his monthly run-down of the darker corners of Previews! Have a good weekend!
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