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CSBG Archive

Flippin’ through Previews – October 2012

I will never be so jaded about comics that I don’t enjoy a good stroll through Previews! It’s time for catalog #289!

'Buy my book or I'll skewer you!'

Dark Horse:

Mike Mignola is back drawing Hellboy on page 32 with Hellboy in Hell. I get my Hellboy-related comics in giant, “library-sized” editions, which are awesome, but the fifth volume of which is already three months late. What’s the deal, Dark Horse? (5 December)

Why would such a swell guy go to Hell?

Speaking of hell, To Hell You Ride #1 on page 34 is about four Indians taking revenge against miners who disturbed their sacred burial grounds. As clichéd as that sounds (and it sounds ridiculously clichéd), this is drawn by Tom Mandrake, which makes it very tempting! (12 December)

Steve Niles takes two of his famous works – 30 Days of Night and Criminal Macabre – and does the logical thing – mashes them up with each other (page 36)! I’m not terribly interested in this, but it’s certainly a no-brainer to do! (12 December)

The Curse of Dracula gets a hardcover treatment on page 46. This is by Marv Wolfman and Gene Colan, and I’m sure Greg Hatcher has read it dozens of times, so he can chime in to tell us how awesome it is. I can’t help thinking that it would look better in black and white, but Dave Stewart is coloring it, so I guess we’ll have to deal with it. (20 February)

Dude ... use moisterizer!

The second Rex Mundi Omnibus is offered on page 47. Buy it and love it! (6 February)

A couple of stories from Dark Horse Presents get collected as one-shots on page 50. Rotten Apple was a bit weird but featured great Sanford Greene art, while Black Beetle was a solid pulp offering from Francesco Francavilla. Obviously, as I’m more of a pulp guy, I hope we get more Black Beetle, but I wouldn’t mind seeing more of the former, either. (19 December)

Faith Erin Hicks’ Adventures of Superhero Girl gets a nice hardcover on page 53. Hicks is pretty awesome, so I’ll probably have to pick this up. (27 February)


Man, Blue Devil, that’s a … costume, all right:

Aren't you cold, man?

Okay, here’s the question about Superman’s awful “early-style” costume (as opposed to his awful “present-day” costume): Here’s Superboy #15 (page 89), where we see Superman looking really schlumpy. Why, if all these other heroes have nicer costumes, does Superman still wear jeans and an ill-fitting T-shirt that he bought at Hot Topic? I mean, I could understand it if he were the first superhero and eventually others came along, but it’s clear from that cover that other characters have far nicer costumes than he does. Doesn’t Superman have any pride in his appearance? (12 December)

Come on, man, buy an iron!

I wish I could remember the post where people were picking on this Batman cover (page 92):

The CBR code for this cover is 'bm.' As someone who has to deal with a constipated child quite a lot, that made me chuckle.

Well, not really picking on it, but just pointing out that the Joker looks a bit … odd, and then, because this is the Internet, Photoshopping other things Batman might be thinking about instead of the Joker. It was a funny bit. (12 December)

I really like the old Elseworlds JSA: The Liberty Files, so I’m glad that we’re seeing The Whistling Skull on page 121 from B. Clay Moore and Tony Harris. Wasn’t this thing planned for many, many years ago? (19 December)

DC finally gets around to releasing some of their higher-end new titles in softcover trades, including Wonder Woman on page 128. I kind of want to read this, even though I know the idiotic turn the story takes in issue #7. I may have to give it a try. (9 January)

In case you’ve been waiting for the trade of Hard Time, DC collects the rest of the series on page 131. Hard Time is a very good comic book that somehow managed to eke out 19 issues. You know you want to read it! (2 January)

Page 140 has some interesting thing. First up is the House of Secrets Omnibus (13 February), collecting the 25 issues of the ongoing plus some other issues. I think I only read the first issue of this and wasn’t too impressed, but I’m sure someone can tell us whether it’s worth a look. Then we get the Sleeper Omnibus (27 February), which has Point Blank, all of Sleeper, and some Coup D’Etat issues. Sleeper tended to grow on me as it went along, which I suppose is good. Finally, Global Frequency gets a complete trade (30 January). This was better in concept than execution, but it had some nifty ideas and some great artists. The first two books are huge and cost $75 each, while Ellis’ book is 20 dollars.

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James O’Barr is writing The Crow: Skinning the Wolves on page 153 – it’s set in a concentration camp in 1945. I’m kind of ambivalent about this – O’Barr is the only one who should write the Crow, but I’d also like to see his artwork, and he’s not drawing this. I’ll have to think about it!

It's a cool cover, though

Chris Ryall and Sam Kieth have The Hollows on page 169, which takes place in a future Japan where things devour souls while some people live in giant tree-cities. It sounds wacky, but it might be worth a look.


Mara is solicited on page 182. This is Brian Wood and Ming Doyle’s mini-series about a world where sports stars are the world’s biggest celebrities. It sounds neat-o. (26 December)

Make Kelly happy and pick this up!

In case you’ve forgotten, Hip Flask is a mini-series, and the latest issue, Ourborous [sic?] shows up on page 186. Ladrönn takes eight months (I think) to finish one page, so these take a while to come out, but they’re worth it, because they’re absolutely gorgeous. Plus, the story is keen. (26 December)

I really did not like Wild Children, Ales Kot’s one-shot from earlier this year, but Change (page 190) sounds kind of neat. It’s a bizarre sci-fi story about strange forces who destroy Los Angeles at different points in time, and the three people who can save it. I’ll probably have to check it out! (12 December)

The Legend of Luther Strode is offered on page 194. The first mini-series was pretty good, made better by Tradd Moore’s brilliant artwork. So this should probably be a good read, too. (5 December)

Luther smash!

Morning Glories reaches the end of “Season One” (page 198). Gah, I hate calling comic books “seasons.” HATE HATE HATE!!!!! Oh, and this is 48 pages. Because Joe Eisma needs no sleep or sustenance – he just draws without stopping! (19 December)

Abhishek Singh has a graphic novel on page 200 called Krishna: A Journey Within. Yes, it’s about Krishna. The preview page is beautiful, but are there any words in this sucker? Anyway, it’s 30 bucks for 300 pages, if you care about that sort of thing. (5 December)


I’ve never read Body Bags, even though I like Jason Pearson’s artwork. The second volume of his stories is collected on page 202, in case you’re interested. (12 December)

On the same page, the hardcover of Butcher Baker, the Righteous Maker is offered. This is an absolutely beautiful comic, and Casey’s story is utterly insane, too. (5 December)

The first trade of Think Tank is solicited on page 206. Only two issues have come out so far, but it’s not bad. The art is really good. (5 December)

Hey, there’s Age of Bronze #32 on page 208! That’s … something. I love this comic, but I buy it in trades, and I fear Shanower will never actually finish it. Good for him for keeping on, though! (12 December)


As I noted last month, in his own comic, Captain America is in another dimension. Yet there he is assembling every Avenger known to man in Avengers #1 (page 6). I was kind of hoping that Marvel NOW! would tighten up the continuity just a tiny bit, but I guess that’s not going to happen. Speaking of Hickman and cover artist Dustin Weaver, whatever happened to S.H.I.E.L.D.?

Regarding Cable and X-Force #1 (page 10): Is … is … it 1995? When did that happen?

Pouches or GTFO!

So the solicit for Iron Man #3 (page 30) puzzles me. First, it’s the most “subtle” Iron Man armor of all time. What the holy fuck does that mean? It’s a guy in armor – how can that even approach “subtle”? “Stealth armor”? Really? Second, once again the mouth-breathing American editors at Marvel don’t know anything about the rest of the world, as they spell Colombia with a “u.” And Americans wonder why the rest of the world hates us.

That is one cool-ass cover for Secret Avengers #35 (page 41):

Dang, Arthur Adams

You know, I really want to like the Big Two and I’m sad that they don’t put out better comics. Here’s the thing about Marvel’s relentlessness in shipping comics and DC’s indifference to putting out softcover trades in a timely manner – I’m even less interested in the trades as well as the single issues. I mean, some of Marvel’s trades look okay, but I know that because Marvel is trying to make every single comic tie into a giant storyline, I’m just not that interested. I’m a bit depressed about that. Oh well.

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Let’s check out the back of the book. Maybe there will be cool stuff there!

I don’t love genre mash-ups, but I love the solicit for Pirate Eye from Action Lab on page 226. It’s “a gripping one-shot adventure for any pirate detective fan!” Because, you know there’s so many of those kinds of people!

It's too goofy not to love!

Archaia has the second of three volumes telling stories about the origin of the Dark Crystal on page 233. Joshua Dysart writes these, and I’ve seen some of the artwork by Alex Sheikman, which is very good. If you’re interested!

On page 240 Art of Fiction has Dames in the Atomic Age, which has been available on their web site for a while. It’s one writer with a lot of artists, telling a pulp adventure, but I know little about it beyond that. Still, it seems neat.

Oh, those dames!

Volume 2 of Valen the Outcast shows up on page 263 from Boom! Studios. I liked the first volume quite a bit, and I’m interested to see how Nelson wraps up the story.

Com.X has Babble on page 272. It’s a mystery about the language of Babel, and it sounds pretty keen.

There’s a new Holmes comic on page 275 from Dynamite. The Liverpool Demon is by Leah Moore and John Reppion, who write pretty decent Holmes pastiches. And everyone loves Holmes, right?

Francavilla is AWESOME

Over on page 296, Fantagraphics offers “50 Girls 50″ and Other Stories by Al Williamson. I’m sure that will be keen. On the next page, the old Vertigo title 7 Miles a Second gets a new printing. That’s awfully nice. I never read it, but I’m sure somebody out there has!

As always, I’m wary of memoirs, but Mariner Books on page 301 has Calling Dr. Laura, which sounds interesting. A young lady who discovers some family secrets turns to Laura Schlessinger for advice, because why not? I may have to pick this up.

Alison Bechdel likes it!

So I turned to page 305 in Previews and fell off my chair. Then I fainted. When I picked myself up, I did a double-take. Yes, Oni Press is actually soliciting Last Call volume 2 by Vasilis Lolos. I read recently about Lolos’ many problems in his life since volume 1 came out, and I’m really glad he’s back working and putting out comics. Last Call volume 1 was a cool book, and I look forward to more!

Rebellion has Judge Dredd: The Garth Ennis Collection trade on page 312. In case your Ennis collection is incomplete!

Some people read their Atomic Robo in trade, so they should be happy that Flying She-Devils of the Pacific is offered on page 313 from Red 5. If you don’t buy Atomic Robo at all … well, you’re probably sad. Perk yourself up by buying this one!

I’m not sure if Hellraisers, which is on page 314 from SelfMadeHero, will be any good, but it’s an interesting idea: four biographies of Richard Burton, Richard Harris, Peter O’Toole, and Oliver Reed woven together into an alcohol-filled adventure. Raise a glass!

Is it time for Scotch?

Valiant has begun soliciting trade paperbacks, as X-O Manowar volume 1 shows up on page 325. The first issue looked pretty good, but has anyone been reading it and can give a recommendation? It’s only 10 bucks for 4 issues, which isn’t great but isn’t bad, either.

Well, that’s about it for this month’s page-through of Previews. I’m sure you’ll let me know if I missed anything – I can’t cover everything! That’s what writing for a comic book blog is all about – letting others know about keen comics!


A heads up: the fifth Hellboy Library Edition came out in July.

I thought comic fans had long accepted the fact that just because two comics come out in the same month doesn’t mean they take place simultaneously.

I, too, really want to like the Big Two. But they’ve made it impossible. Their storylines make little or no sense, their continuity (even month-to-month) is shot to hell, and their characters act out of character.

Marvel and DC are like little brats that break every toy in their toy box.

Michael: That’s not what I’m talking about. All of Cap’s comic is taking place in another dimension. If it occurs “before” the events of Avengers, I will bet no one will ever ask him, “Hey, how was that other dimension? That sounds sucky.” If it happens “after” Avengers, there will never be a point in Hickman’s book where he disappears for a while. I certainly don’t mind one character showing up in several different books – I’ve long gotten over that – but the whole point of the new Cap comic is that he’s not even on this earth. Does he manage to pop in every so often to assemble the Avengers and then say, “Whoops! Gotta get back to Dimension Z”? That’s what bugs me.

So, basically, it’s the nerd tapestry.

I quote some very wise men: “Repeat to yourself, it’s just a show, I should really just relax.”


I remember reading that he said that the avengers would reflect what was going on in other books. So, I don’t know maybe time flows differently in Dimension Z, like narnia or something. I know that’s whats happening in Fantastic Four, so I imagine it being explained.

WILD CHILDREN was literally the best comic i read all year. such a respite from Marvel being dumb.

CS: That’s weird. It was due in July, and I recently asked my retailer about it, and he never received it. Oh well. I’ll pick it up on Amazon or someplace!

Michael: Sure, of course it’s ridiculous. I hardly read any superhero comics anyway, so it doesn’t really matter. I just find it humorous that Marvel and DC want us to buy everything they publish because it fits into some giant story but they can’t keep their facts straight.

Randy: That would be nice!

Fresh_Pork: Man, we are far apart on that. I really did not like Wild Children. I mean, really, REALLY did not like it! To each their own, though!

Tom Fitzpatrick

October 7, 2012 at 4:30 pm

I think the fact that Tony Harris was quite busy with EX MACHINA and not so busy with WAR HEROES might’ve kept him from doing the newest JSA (elseworlds?) series. Plus this one’s not written by Dan Jolley.

Not too sure, I like the cover of The Curse of Dracula. It’s beautifully done by Gene Colan, but it kind of shows Dracula raping (or ravishing) his victim. Doesn’t it?

As for the Cable and the X-force cover: which one’s Cable? They all look alike! ;-)

Wasn’t Cable recently healed of his techno-organic parts in X-Sanction? Not that I would be particularly bothered were that series ignored…

I…I love Michael P for quoting MST3K.

As for X-O Manowar, the first issue was bit longer than a normal one, so that’s about 100 pages. 10 bucks is reasonable since I spent nearly 12 for the first 4. Plus, you probably get all the variants in there too.

Oh, quality? Yeah, it’s a pretty cool book. I’ve enjoyed the nuValiant pretty well, what I’ve read of it.

More comments later!

I’ve read the first three issues of X-O Manowar. It’s been a very good read thus far. Feels a lot like the old Valiant: the story moves somewhat rapidly, but it also has a modern sensibility to it.

When they get around to collecting Harbinger (maybe next month?) I highly recommend it. They’ve gone beyond “Ultimate” or “All Star” conventions and turned the original concept into something intriguing by updating it while keeping some key foundations. It’s still too early to say with Bloodshot and Archer & Armstrong, though I have similar hopes for those (and the forthcoming Shadowman too!).

I’ve liked X-O and all of the new Valiant really. I’d have to read the originals again but I feel like the new X-O initial story is very similar to the 90’s initial story.

nuValiant is pretty cool. They are all pretty well written and consistent.

Regarding the ludicrous “Season” virus, as you know I could not agree more, it’s just so annoyingly craven and D-U-M-B! Let the hate flow, Greg! As for the concept that Marvel’s (and DC’s) comics should tell some mega-story, jeez, what are they thinking?! That’s precisely the approach that turns me off. I don’t have a problem with the occaoccassional crossover but when all of the comics are smushed together until they lose their individuality it’s fispiriting. Not only that but thete’s rately any time for the charactrs to breathe and precious little evidence of convincing humanity too. I don’t think it’s eeird to expect some professionalism frm the Big Two or better storytelling. I want to read good stories, I have no intetedt in product, and thrre’s no reason that Superhero comics can’t be individual and good.
And then we come to Iron Man’s “subtle” armour… Bwahaha! That just sounds…bizarre. What’s next? Thor with a “subtle” Mjolnir? Spider-Woman with new “subtle” boobs! So… Many… Possibilities… Coming soon: The Subtle Iron Man. It’s Marvel Now! Excuse my typos, as usual I’m needing to rush :-P.

X-Force, Blue Devil, and Superboy are in different rooms at the worst Christmas party of all time.

Dr. Nemesis had so much potential. And this is what’s become of him? It’s a shame.

And am I the only one who finds it strange that there is a Manhattan in the DCU? I mean it isn’t THAT weird, but something about that doesn’t fit.

When I see the title “To Hell You Ride” I recall it’s the nickname and folk origin of the name of the former mining town Telluride, Colorado. I wonder if the book takes place there.

I got hooked on reading Elephantmen from this blog and would love to read Hip Flask (which, if I understand correctly, is set AFTER the events depicted in the Elephantmen series) but I’m waiting for the series to finish first. I’m sure Starkings will issue a beautiful hardcover of the whole mini once it finishes…

And I’m also a trade waiter for Atomic Robo and definitely psyched to have not one but TWO new Robo trades releasing in the upcoming months.

Dr.Nemesis needs his hat.

Dr. Nemesis’ previous design was that of a germaphobe Elijah Snow, to suit the fact that most of his dialogue was trying to be Warren Ellis. I’m open to the new look, given how uneventful the original design was.

as for SHIELD, Dustin Weaver is slowly trying to finish it, in the old Marvel-Method:

And as to my previous comment, I of course meant they’ll probably print all the variant covers in that XO trade.

And second Craig on Harbinger. It’s actually felt almost like a different book each issue, but in a good way. Great stuff.

BitBiteOuch, I found it weird that there’s a Manhattan in the DCU also. The first emphasis I remember was in Morrison’s Seven Soldiers Manhattan Guardian mini, but I’m sure it’s been in other places prior to that. Man, it’d be (sorta) cool if they bring Manhattan Guardian into the nuDC. I say sorta because they’re bound to screw it up.


Blue Devil is totally doing his Freddie Mercury impression.

Huh, why IS Superman in the t-shirt/jeans if it’s a present day book? Why am I so confused?

Oh, Whistling Skull has been in the works for ages. I had originally had the impression it was going to be a separate thing, maybe even from Image, but at the Boston Comic Con about a year and a half ago, I got to meet Tony Harris and he was showing off some WS pages and explaining how they tied into the JSA Liberty Files world. I think it’s a bit of a prequel to the previously released Liberty Files/Unholy Three books. This was also before the nuDC was announced (so the print I have from Capullo with Batman and Robin might be the first art released from that. 101/200, hells yeah!), so the 52 worlds was still a possibility. Now, who knows?

With that Hard Time, is that the whole thing in one volume, or is this a second volume? And why did I miss the first?

House of Secrets omni…ooh. Tempting, but I have about half the issues and probably could hunt down the rest for pretty cheap. I think it was worth it. I wonder if they include some of the letters pages, because in the first couple issues there’s a text piece with the “secrets” that the creative/editorial team have.

Global Frequency was fuggin’ awesome all around! YOU LIE!!! (uh…sorry)

Crow– the current mini is pretty good, with art by Kevin “Fishtown” Colden. I met him the other day, and if I get something typed up and Brian wants to post it, you can read more about it.

Morning Glories end of Season One…bah. So annoying.

Have you noticed that there are a lot of Image books this year in particular that are one name titles that don’t really convey the concept much? Mara, Change, Debris, Dancer, Harvest (well, that one kinda does), Saga, etc. (Actually, etc. is the next one coming, I think.)

That cover of the Cable and X-Force book makes me wonder how they explained off the end of Ghost Box.

But damn, look at Cable’s eye patch and big mech-y arm! And Dr Nemesis’s gas mask-y thing! It’s so much awful on one cover I may just buy it for the hell of it.

I believe the Secret Avengers cover caption is “I know the lights are out, but I can totally see people in there! Trick or Treat!”

I will probably have to check out Pirate Eye, and probably Dames in the Atomic Age.

7 Miles a Second…that’s the Wotjewicz (or whatever the name was) and Romberger book, right? It’s a bit grim as it deals with male prostitution to a degree, so there are some icky parts. But I’d say it’s well done for what it is, if you get me.

Damn, comics have been so good this year. Marvel and DC withstanding. (Actually, there have been some good DC things. Voodoo was better than you’d think. Frankenstein is pretty good. Earth 2 and Worlds’ Finest are deec. Blah blah blah.)

My wallet hurts, though. Ow!

Nitzan Rotschild

October 8, 2012 at 6:38 am

That Francavilla Holmes cover – WOW! Too bad he’s not doing the interiors.

Mike Blake: Yep, it takes place in Telluride. Well spotted!

Andrew: I’m glad I got you hooked on Elephantmen! :) Yes, Hip Flask takes place after Elephantmen (the solicit for this latest issue actually spoils a big plot point, which was annoying), and who knows when the final issue will come out. But I do imagine that Starkings will have a beautiful hardcover of it when it does come out.

Anonymous: Thanks for the link.

Travis: The Hard TIme trade is issues #7-12 of the first series. DC ought to just publish a trade with all 19 issues!

I like Global Frequency, I just didn’t think the execution was as good as the concept. Something was missing from it, and I’m not sure what. It’s tough for me to pin down why I don’t love it. But I like reading it, certainly.

Actually, I have no idea what that Dracula book is; it’s not a Marvel reprint.. I think I may have to get it now though.

Now I’m even MORE curious about Dracula!

Curse of Dracula is a book Wolfman and Colan did for Dark Horse in the 2000s where they reunited on the Dracula character without having to do so at Marvel, since Dracula is public domain and all.

I have nothing to say that hasn’t already been covered, but thanks for being awesome, Greg. This is my favorite CSBG feature and I should probably give you some positive reinforcement every once in awhile.

T.: Thanks for the info. I don’t remember that at all!

Dan: Thanks! I enjoy doing it!

Thanks for the shout out for Dames In The Atomic Age! We were incredibly psyched when we saw the book was a Spotlight book this month, and we definitely appreciate the attention here! Cheers!

You can check out a 10 page preview of the book here, if you are so inclined:


Hey Christopher Ryder, I placed my order for Dames…at my LCS this morning. In fact, my comic shop guy said it was something that appealed to him, so maybe he’ll order a few!

I will have to check out the preview here to be sure my money will be well spent.

Christopher: No problem. It looks very cool, and I’m looking forward to reading it!

Thanks Travis! I hope you (and the crew at your local shop) dig it!

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