Well I thought I could escape a bigger week with the five week thing but the confluence of books still managed to catch up with me and I got a decent size week smack dab in the middle of the month. The funny think is that the preliminary list was actually bigger then what is actually showing up and a long overdue EC Archives is still not showing up. Also as it is springtime that means some mulching and yard work has to enter the picture which eats into my “free” time that I give to comics and the blog. The market report for this small corner of the world is DC 42% (16 books), Independents 32% (12 books) and Marvel 26% (10 books), a closer then normal split.
Bat Lash #5 (of 6) – This has been a typical western tale in many aspects. They have also remained true to the core character that was established for Bat Lash. In some ways that may sound boring, but it is well written with beautiful art by John Severin and covers by Walt Simonson. This has been a real gem and should have a long life as a trade and hard cover in book stores.
Batman and the Outsiders #6 – Last issue this series finally started getting a head of steam as the first mission was well along its way in being completed. I enjoyed that Ralph and Sue Dibny showed up (they are now ghosts) and glad to see Chuck Dixon utilizing what 52 set-up for their new status quo. It is nice to know that they are still a happy couple in the after life.
Brave and Bold #12 – Wrapping up the year long story that Mark Waid has deftly tied together via the Book of Destiny. Jerry Ordway following in George Perez’s shoes is a place that he has been in before. Since he and George are stylistically in the same school Jerry was an excellent choice to bring on board to conclude this story. I’m looking forward to a hard cover that collects the entire first 12 issues.
Catwoman #78 – She is still on the Salvation Run world and is trying to keep her distance from the rest of the villains. Last issue she ratted out the Martian Manhunter to save her skin and I think this issue wraps up her visit to the Salvation Run world. Will Pfeifer has done a good job of keeping this detour interesting, but I’m anxious to get back to our interrupted story.
Countdown to Final Crisis #2 – The battle that everyone has been waiting for Jimmy Olsen versus Darkseid and only one can live. This book is mercifully coming to an end. The one thing this series has accomplished is that it has lowered my opinion of Paul Dini’s writing abilities.
DC/Wildstorm Dreamwar #1 (of 6) – It is almost embarrassing how screwed up the how Wildstorm Universe has become. The whole line has lost direction over and over again and now we get this cross-over between the Universes. I would have skipped it, but Keith Giffen is the writer and he can make almost any concept interesting, so I’m trying it out.
Flash #239 – Tom Peyer is on part 2 of his first arc and he is putting Wally through his paces (pun intended). I’m in the minority as best as I can tell, but I’m enjoying Wally’s return and think Freddie Williams II is a great choice for a Flash artist. I’m glad to see that we have possibly the first young family super hero book every put out on the market.
Gotham Underground #7 (of 9) – This is the in-continuity Batman book that includes all of the Bat family. So far this has been quite an enjoyable adventure and has given us old villains, new villains, heroes in danger and heroes helping each other. This has been one of the better mini-series in the DCU.
Green Arrow Year One HC – Andy Diggle and Jock just flat out knocked the re-telling of Ollie’s origin out of the park. As I do not keep any of my single issues I had to own this series and a nice hard cover fills the bill perfectly. If you missed this series, check it out, an excellent re-telling that remains true to Ollie’s origin, but updates it as well.
Hellblazer #243 – Since I have gone to trying and adding covers for every single book, I no longer will segregate Vertigo and Wildstorm from the rest of the DC books. Hellblazer is back as a top of the chart book again. Issue, after issue after issue under Andy Diggle’s pen has made this a “can’t miss book”.
Robin #173 – Tim’s world is full of girl trouble and this issue appears to be focusing on it. At school Tim is having problems with his girl friend. At “work” Tim is having issues with a female vigilante. Most of all his past is coming back to haunt him as a Spoiler has been in the background. Chuck Dixon has done a great job on Robin and it is like he never left.
Salvation Run #6 (of 7) – The penultimate chapter of this series is coming out this week. I’m curious to see how this all plays out. We know that the planet they were supposed to be sent to was in fact circumvented by Darkseid and he rerouted them to his own planet. We also know that Final Crisis says evil wins, so I’m guessing this book may play into Final Crisis.
Showcase Presents The Legion of Super Heroes Volume 2 – Over 500 pages of glorious Legion adventures from their early years. I have all of this material in my Archives, but I know a fan in Florida who will love owning a copy of this material, so I’m getting it for her.
Suicide Squad Raise the Flag # 8 (of 8) – Hate to see this series end and I will have to get the trade of this series. I would love to see some sort of reprint of the original series as I have no desire to own single issue comics anymore, so I need a reprint of this material to be done. If not a Showcase (as once advertised) then maybe a series of color trades.
Superman #675 – Kurt Busiek brings his run to a close with this oversized issue of Superman that sports a nice Alex Ross cover. Kurt is not really leaving Superman, he is moving over to the new weekly book Trinity that features Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman. Kurt has been an important part of the revival of Superman, as I believe Superman has been very readable and often a very good book since the One Year Later jump.
Tangent Superman’s Reign #2 (of 12) – The first issue was a very good read, We found out the Tangent Earth is being run by their world’s Superman and he is a dictator who has tired to bring “safety” to the people, which of course has led to a fascist regime. An eerie parallel to what is happening in America today. If you don’t think we are becoming more of a fascist state say something politically incorrect and see how fast you get stoned by the crowds.
76 #3 (of 8) – This book actually makes me think more of the sixties then the seventies for some reason. I guess the seventies are not as distinctive a timeframe in my mind as the sixties. This two feature book has been good so far with the Kung Fu hero as half the book being the most interesting. I’m also enjoying the mob after the “innocent” girl who has their money also, just not as much as the first half of the book.
Bad Planet #5 (of 12) – Where the heck did this book go and I believe it fell off the face of the Earth once before. I hope we eventually get to the end of this series as I’m really enjoying it. Think fifties sci-fi / horror films and then update it and you have this book. Aliens, hot babes, monsters and the military are going every which way.
Infinite Horizons #3 (of 6) – This has been a great series so far. The updating of Homer’s Odyssey has been a strong tale that resonates on an emotional level for me when I read it. The devotion the Captain has to his family and the unwavering faith his wife has in him comes through loud and clear.
Noble Causes #32 – I’m very glad writer Jay Faerber has created this jumping on point for this series as I wanted to get into it, but did not feel like reading all the old trades to get caught up first. Since Dynamo Five has been so good I wanted to really give Jay’s other Image book a chance and this issue starts after a five year jump. So for fans of the series they will be able to guess more about what is going on, but for myself it is a good spot to get onboard.
Perhapanauts #1 – This series is being given new life and I want to give it a shot. I enjoyed the annual enough to want to follow it up with the new #1, but I’m still not sold on this series yet. Still frequent commenter Bjooks has enjoyed the series so that is a plus for giving this book more rope.
Sword #7 – Last issue was so great where we got the entire back story we needed to learn about the Sword and what the heck has been going on. This issue we will see how Dara plans to go after these immortals who killed her Dad. This is a highly recommended series and a plus for me is that the series is going to end on or around 28 issues.
Fear Agent #20 Hatchet Job Part 4 (of 5) – Dark Horse is giving us the regular numbering and the mini-series numbering on many of their books lately, BPRD’s inside front cover said issue #42. This book has fallen behind on its schedule, but I can forgive Heath (our “hero”). Last issue Heath and his ex-wife were jumping out a window to escape the danger they were in. Even when Heath does the right thing, it never quite works out.
Grendel Behold the Devil #6 (of 8) – The whole Zombie thing last issue was a little annoying, but for the most part I’m sitting back and letting Matt Wagner drive this car. Grendel is a great character and not only am I enjoying this series, but I’m getting around to sitting down and re-reading the hardcover reprints of Hunter’s early adventures. Now let’s speed up those hard covers and get to more of the future Grendel material.
Pigeons from Hell #1 (of 4) – A Robert E. Howard story is being adapted for comics by Joe Lansdale. I have ignored reading up on the story and I going in cold. From the cover it looks like the story was the inspiration for the “Birds” by Alfred Hitchcock.
Cthulhu Tales #1 – BOOM studios is giving us another ongoing series centered on the Lovecraft horror ideas. I really need to read the source material for this as so many horror books and the Mignolverse owe so much to the Lovecraft stories. Heck Steve Englehart borrowed heavily from those stories to create some great menaces for Dr. Strange years and years ago.
Grimm Fairy Tales #26 – Part 2 of the Little Mermaid tale. Right now it seems clear that Belinda is in control of these tales and she plans to create misery where ever so goes. This book is very uneven, but it is a quick read and can be anywhere from entertaining, to a change of pace okay book, to why did I buy this book.
Willow #1 (of 5) - From the same people who brought you Grimm Fairy Tales comes a new supernatural horror title. The official hype “A town known for Bigfoot sightings… A former NYPD detective who has returned home and horribly dismembered bodies found in the dead of night… Welcome to Willow Creek! The much-anticipated series kicks off with a roar as Deacon McKay, the new deputy sheriff of the small town of Willow Creek, discovers two dismembered bodies on a snowy night. As Deacon begins his investigation, he finds that each witness holds a piece of a puzzle that conceals an evil far greater and more horrifying than anything he could have ever imagined.”
Annihilation Conquest #6 (of 6) – The conclusion of the Phalanx saga and what I’m guessing is the launch point for the new “Guardians of the Galaxy” series. The use of Ultron with the Phalanx works, but I think it is about time to put that villain in the do not use box for the next five years.
Captain America #37 – I have issue with this book at times, but as one long story about the resurrection of Bucky it really has been a good story. Still it is comic like these that have me thinking that it is time for graphic novels to just be issues as graphic novels. The 22 pages of story to fit this particular format is not working for some writers because their story is a long form story. As the price point of regular comics creeps up, the difference between trying a story arc of a book and buying the trade has disappeared.
Captain Marvel #5 (of 5) – I’m curious to see how this ends. So far the return of Captain Marvel has not really served any greater purposes and it now starting to feel like it is taking away from one of the few deaths in comics that have mattered. I feel like I’m hoping he is a skrull.
Ghost Rider #22 – Jason Aaron has me reading Ghost Rider, it is still something that I do not quite believe. Johnny Blaze’s aura of coolness died for me years ago and Nick Cage drove a stake through its heart. Now this book has a great vibe to it and I’m looking forward to this issue.
Iron Man #28 – I believe this is the issue where we can actually see how bloodshot Tony Stark’s eye is. Close up covers do nothing for me. I hope this is the end of the Mandarin story line and then I’m ready to close up shop on Iron Man. I’m not a fan of the most overused character in the MU anymore and only this story line (as it is long, but well written) has kept me on the book.
Iron Man Legacy of Doom #1 (of 4) – This is a throwback story I believe and is wrapping up an old Iron Man story. It looks like it could be some nostalgic fun so I’m trying it out to see.
Marvel Masterworks Volume 95 – Captain Marvel Volume 3 – This collection is getting into the great run when Jim Starlin took over Captain Marvel and made the character very cool and cosmic. I re-read this material a year or so ago and it holds up well. I’m very happy to have this on my bookshelf.
War is Hell: First Flight Phantom Eagle #2 (of 5) – A Garth Ennis story of WWI utilizing the almost unknown “Z” list Marvel character the Phantom Eagle. The first issue was not bad, but I really need to only by the trade on this type of series. I was unable to find a cover image for this book.
X-Factor #30 – Still the best in-continuity X-Book that I read and I think on the stands. The “Messiah Complex” took a little steam off this book, but it has gotten back into the groove pretty easily. I’m anxious to have Layla back with the band. I think I read Longshot is going to be joining the group and I hate that, if true, but hope Peter David can make it work.
X-Men Divided We Stand #1 (of 2) – This will be a tough mini-series to drop as it is only two issue and I believe a bunch of short solo stories catching us up with various members of the group. I’m still not really feeling like I’m enjoying the X-stuff as much as I want to like it. Old loves die hard.
So that is a wrap for this week with a decent amount of books coming out and plenty of things to brighten up another Wednesday, probably not as much as I brighten up my store’s Wednesday when I pick up my books.