Thank god for five week months, I used to think five week months were bad, but with my list growing a five week month is a nice respite. Also I have been working to reduce my list slowly but surely, so I may change my tune is a few months. Still this week is totally dominated by product out of DC comics of the 29 items on my list 22 or 76% are DC. So I'll work backwards with Marvel (2 books) first, then independents (5) then DC broken down by Wildstorm, Vertigo and the DCU material.
Essential Moon Knight Volume 2 – This volume collects Moon Knight #11-30 and is far enough into the series for me to call it quits after this volume. This material and volume 1 is really only marginal stuff, but still a lot of fun, but two essentials worth is all I need in my library of trades.
Uncanny X-Men #491 – The conclusion of the Morlock story line. I don’t know all of the X-stuff in this and X-Men is just still way too convoluted. At least Morrison’s run was accessible. I have followed the X-Men for the most part, but have skipped a few years once in a while and I did not buy every frellling spin off and I feel like I do not even know half of these characters anymore. Too many villains, betrayals, secrets, mysteries, on and on, I mean X-Factor I can read and be drawn in, this feels like I need to read a 50 page handbook before I can understand all of it.
Parade with Fireworks #2 (of 2) – The first issue was a really well done book. I classify this as putting words and pictures to a family’s oral history. Terrific story about Italy during the time between WWI and WWII. An obvious labor of love for writer/artist Micael Cavallaro.
Weapon #4 (of 4) – An average tale of a martial artist with a tech weapon caught up in a mystery surrounding his family’s past. If I had been in my harsher mode of dropping mini-series if the first issue is a very good start, this book would not have made the cut.
Gamekeeper #5 – One of only two ongoing Virgin titles that I get and this book is always a little iffy as the story is dragging on way too slowly. Every issue since #2 has been “I wonder if I will continue to get this book” question for me.
Conan #44 – The conclusion of the “Rogues in the House” storyline and the last issue with Cary Nord as the interior artist. Hate to see Cary move on, but he produced a lot of the first 44 issues. Conan under the Dark Horse banner has been a good book and I look forward to its continuation. This should be a very good issue.
Lobster Johnson the Iron Prometheus #2 (of 5) – Mike Mignola’s little universe is a throwback to an almost pulp fiction type world and this book is set in the past. Usually I’ve grown tired of Nazis, but it fits this story. The official hype “The Lobster and Jim delve deeper into the sinister forces behind Professor Gallaragas’s mysterious disappearance and discover a conspiracy wilder than they could possibly have imagined, with Nazis, Tibetan cultists, and a prophesy whose fulfillment could mean the end of the world . . .”
Midnighter #12 – Keith Giffen has brought a whole different vibe to this book and it is a good one. Midnighter is now be given some depth with more back story being added. Still overall the entire Wildstorm re-launch has to be considered an abject failure. No Wildcats and no Authority, Wildstorm PHD cancelled already and I’m dropping Deathblow. A shame as there was a lot of potential in those plans.
Welcome to Tranquility #11 – One the few successful books from the Wildstorm re-launch contines with its Zombie tale. I believe that no comic series can resist doing a Zombie tale lately.
Deadman #13 – Final issue. This book suffered from never having any real resolutions and a very complex plot line. Bruce Jones has not had a single successful series since coming over to DC. I think he is a good writer, at least he was in years past, but nothing has gelled for him lately.
Faker #4 (of 6) – The exact opposite of Deadman, this is a complex and strange storyline, but it has been straight forward enough to keep your interest in the book and is a mini-series. Mike Carey and Jock have a nice book on their hands. The official hype “Jessie and her roommates encounter some people who are a little too interested in Nick and the secrets he might be hiding — people who are prepared to get answers with a scalpel. But Jessie is every bit as intent on finding out the truth — and for the ultimate faker, love and intimacy are just weapons in the armory…”
Jack of Fables #15 – The conclusion of the “Bad Prince” story. This book really works and against all odds. The lead character is a morally reprehensible person, that you end up getting a kick out of his stories. I think what helps is that since Jack is a total a**, you are happy when all this crap happens to him.
Scalped #10 – The best book on my list this week that enough people are not reading. The official hype “"Casino Boogie" part 5 of 6. Experience life on the rez for 19-year-old Dino Poor Bear, a kid just struggling to survive in America's most impoverished community. On the night of the casino's grand opening, a chance encounter with Chief Red Crow might provide Dino with an opportunity to finally realize his dream and escape the reservation. But will he take it?”
Vinyl Underground #1 – I’m very curious to see what this series is all about. The official hype is so damn long that I worry that the back story is so damn dense getting to the actual story may take too long. The official hype “In this fast-paced, ultra-cool ongoing crime-noir series, an unlikely quartet of occult detectives secretly solve crimes — from DJ crack bars in Camden to the elegant, high-society ballrooms that make up modern London. The Vinyl Underground is led by Morrison Shepherd, a D-list celebrity darling, soul DJ, and son of an ex-footballer. Fresh out of prison and off a nasty coke habit, Morrison is joined by a fellow ex-con named Perv, whose seizures give him clues to crimes long before the cops, and Leah, a gorgeous morgue assistant who leads a double life online and represents the brawn of the team.Morrison's ex-flame Abi is reluctantly forced to join the team when her father is implicated for murder. A young boy's head (with diamonds in the eye sockets) washes up on the edge of the Thames and seems to be connected to a series of ritual killings, a drug called Khat, and Muti magic. Can they get to the bottom of it?”
Action #856 – Me no like next issue, me am good at …. That stuff is why I don’t like Bizzaro, but Johns, Donner and Eric Powell produced a beautiful first part of this Bizzaro tale. Really looking forward to part 2.
Atom #16 – More on exactly why Ivy Town was messed up and a lot of the evidence points to Ray Palmer. Guest Writer Roger Stern with art by Mike Norton. Atom and Blue Beetle are both good third generational heroes and one of the reasons that I think DC does better then Marvel as new characters under the mask give us more of a blank slate to work on.
Countdown #30 – More stuff seems to happen as these stories just continue to drag on and on.
Countdown Presents: The Search for Ray Palmer: Crime Syndicate – By Sean McKeever and Jamal Ingle. I was looking forward to this issue, but it seems like any coolness and bang for the buck this book had was already stolen by the last issue of Countdown itself which focused heavily on the visit to the Crime Syndicate World.
Detective Comics #837 – Features the reformed Riddler and Harley Quinn. Written by Paul Dini with art by the vastly underrated Don Kramer. This story provides some background on how Harley ended up in the Amazonian Women’s Help Center. As the halfway point approaches to final crisis you can get a feeling that things are coming to a head throughout the DCU.
Green Lantern Corps #16 – Arguably the best “event” in comics this year is the Sinestro War and this issue the focus on the battle to save Mogo. Also it is nice to see Arisia back. It was a little creepy when she aged herself and Hal dated her, but since a lot of time has passed and she has been an adult for awhile I’m glad to see her back in action.
Infinity Inc. #2 – Last issue really surprised me as I was thinking just another group book, but with Peter Milligan at the helm I should have known better. Right now the story is focusing on the ex-members of the group and Steel trying to figure out what is wrong with them. Good start with the first issue and hope issue #2 is as good.
JLA/Hitman #2 (of 2) – I loved the last issue of this book and if DC had all reprinted the entire series in trade I would have gone out and picked them up to re-read that series. I have grown over time to really appreciate just how good Hitman was as a series. When the book is read as a whole it is really an interesting and good story. Tommy is a great character and has been sorely missed.
Jonah Hex #24 – Featuring the return of El Diablo and Bat Lash! Hard to ask for anything more and DC has announced a Bat Lash mini-series, Marvel is publishing a second Masterworks of the Rawhide Kid, 3:10 to Yuma has been a hit movie, a nice little resurgence of the western!
Metal Men #3 (of 8) – The official hype “Magnus and the Robot Renegades form an uneasy alliance to save Gold and the Metal Men as they come face to face with Doctor Tomorrow and his deadly Death-Metal Men! Plus, the time-war between the ancient alchemist known only as the Nameless and the twisted future shock versions of himself rages on! Who will be the victor? And more importantly, will the Metal Men ever be created?” Which is my official problem with the book, way too much being crammed into a little mini-series. Duncan Rouleau is the artist and writer and he is over writing this book. Normally I think artists are good at letting the pictures carry the story.
Metamorpho Year One #1 (of 6) – This is one of those series where I’m going into it, saying why did this get green lighted as a project? Is anyone clamoring for it? Dan Jurgens and Jesse Delperdang are the creators and I’m going in with no real expectations.
Nightwing #137 – The conclusion of the Nightwing/Vigiliante/Metal Eddie story and also the end of Marv Wolfman’s run on the book I believe. Marv has definitely moved this book up a notch and I believe Peter Tomasi is taking over, so that should be a good thing as Peter’s long association as Batman editor should have given him a good feel for the character.
Question Zen and Violence TP – Reprinting the first six issues of Denny O’Neil and Denys Cowan’s Question series. This was a really, really good series and I’m very happy to see it get into a higher end trade format. I hope this book sells well enough to push for more of this series to be collected.
Supergirl #22 – The second part of the Karate Kid storyline. Since I love the original Legion I’m enjoying this two issue arc as we await Kelly Puckett and yet another new start and direction for Supergirl. The character is very cool and her potential keeps me on this book, but eventually it needs to be a real series.
Tales of the Sinestro Corps:The Cyborg Superman – The first tales book gave us some background on what happened to Kyle as Parallax took him over and this book promise to do the same. While add on books are usually annoying the first one added enough to the overall story to make me feel it was worth it and at the same time could have been skipped and not hurt you from following just the actual war. What all add on book should be, depth added to the back story, but not needed for the actual story.
So ends the DC domination week. As a big DC and independent guy, this week works fine for me, just needed more of the smaller press stuff.