Axel-In-Charge: Extending "Secret Wars," Excitement for a "Totally Awesome Hulk"
I’ll be doing a post later this month about 10 specific “NEW” books to buy in 2014 where I talk in detail about some new series coming out that I’m excited to read in 2014 (and you should be too). However, I thought I’d do a list of more generally “comics related” things I’m excited about as well since there are a good number of them this year.
There’s a lot of Marvel on this list, guys. But what I can I say? I like the cut of their jib these days aka they’re dominating like a BOSS.
Well, world domination may be a bit excessive, but all in all the news coming out of NYCC (and some that came before NYCC) was incredibly positive. Hard to argue with such a killer week of news. Let’s start with some cool stuff that actually happened last week, prior to NYCC.
EDIT: Just to be clear, since people are going nuts in the comments. This post is SPECIFICALLY about the news that was announced this weekend at NYCC 2013. While I talk generally about Marvel and DC and their approach to “women in comics” the catalyst is all the NEW THINGS that were announced this weekend. To summarize: yes, DC has some lady-led comics right now (more in fact than Marvel) but short of the Stephanie Brown announcement they made ZERO exciting moves on the “women in comics” front this weekend. So, yeah, that’s gonna skew what I’m talking about. Try not to cry.
It occurs to me that it seems like many comic book covers are homages. Which is fine with me. I have no problem with it. It just made me think, though, how long could I go before I hit a week where NO new comic book was released that had a cover that was an homage to something? Let’s find out! Here is an archive of all the cover homages featured in the streak so far!
DV8: Gods & Monsters #1 – #8. Brian Wood (writer). Rebekah Isaacs (artist). Carrie Strachan (colors). Fiona Staples (covers). Jared K. Fletcher (letters). Ben Abernathy (editor). Kristy Quinn (assist. editor). Wildstorm. Full Color, 22-pages/book, $2.99/book.
I haven’t been shy on this column about my love for Brian Wood and Rebekah Isaac’s DV8 Gods & Monsters mini-series and now that it’s over I’m excited to talk about it in its entirety.
The first thing to say is that in the hands of Rebekah Isaacs and Carrie Strachan (colors) this series is, hands down, the best looking and most consistently stunning book I’ve read in the last year. Add to that the massively talented Brian Wood and gorgeous covers by Fiona Staples and you really have something.
The greatest thing that Wood has done with DV8 is simply to re-introduce and re-invigorate an entire cast of characters and by the end of the series poise them beautifully (well, most of them – damn you Brian Wood!) for any talented writer to pick them up and use them in a new series (hint hint DC). It’s no small feat to completely rehab characters practically forgotten in the massive landscape of comics, and Brian Wood does it here with grace and apparent ease. This entire team has been wonderfully explored and developed, updated and made relevant again and I can’t think of a team I’d be more interested in seeing in another mini-series or ongoing…and prior to this mini-series I really couldn’t have cared less about most of them.
I’ve talked pretty openly about my love for Brian Wood’s new DV8 mini-series Gods & Monsters, from the fact that I think it feels both modern and also somehow like a throwback to really good superhero character pieces, but it’s also been one of the inspirations for why I’ve been talking so frequently about how much I’d like to see more independent creators given a chance to show what they can do on more mainstream characters. Not that DV8 was ever totally mainstream, but there’s no reason why DV8 can’t emerge as a powerhouse of a title from Wildstorm, if done right. And with able assists from Fiona Staples on covers and Carrie Strachan delivering beautiful colors, Brian Wood and Rebekah Isaacs are doing it SO right. The way I feel a lot more indie creators could if given the chance to run wild on a title the way Wood and Isaacs have cut loose on Gods & Monsters.
Brian Wood is a goliath in this industry so it feels strange to call him independent, but if you look at his body of work, that’s exactly what it is. Wildly independent. It’s honed to his own vision and his own personal standards, which as far as I’m concerned, are well above that of most comics out there. Brian Wood puts out awesome book after awesome book ranging from ongoings like the epic Northlanders and DMZ to totally alternative superhero-ish tales in the excellent Demo; to literary short fiction made into comics in the form of Local; to now breathing new life into some 1990’s anti-heroes almost forgotten in DV8’s Gods & Monsters mini-series.
It’s all exceptional stuff. Brian Wood, for my money, is one of the great comic creators and writers of our time, so I was pretty excited when he agreed to talk to me about DV8, a comic that I really hope will pave the way (eventually) for a new direction for superheroes.
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