Since this is the first comic week of 2009, my short commentary will be on my resolutions for 2009, which are none. I gave up the idea of New Year’s resolutions years ago and realized if I had something that I needed to do or change I should do at the moment and not wait for an artificial starting point. My hope for 2009 is that all the various plans and ventures that the comic book publishers have deliver some more great stories to us and that Marvel does not do another mega-event.
The books I’m looking forward to most this week are:
Green Lantern #36 – I’m always looking forward to this book now. Ever since the Sinestro Corps War Johns has been on a great roll with this series and he has left an indelible mark on the Green Lantern mythos. The company line “Written by Geoff Johns; Art by Doug Mahnke and Christian Alamy; Cover by Shane Davis.The prelude to "The Blackest Night" continues, building off of FINAL CRISIS: RAGE OF THE RED LANTERNS! Hal and the Green Lanterns venture to the prison planet Ysmault to face the full fury of Atrocitus and the Red Lantern Corps. Meanwhile, the war lights ignite across the universe as the Controllers seek out the Orange Lanterns.”
Incognito #1 – I know Brubaker and Phillips say this book is just a change of pace and they will get back to Criminal, but if this book is a bigger success then Criminal is, they made be hard pressed to not continue this series. While Criminal has its moments, it just never quite hits that perfect note for me yet. The word “Written by Ed Brubaker Art & Cover by Sean Phillips From the creators of Criminal and Sleeper comes the most insane and evil super-villain comic you've ever read! What if you were an ex-super villain hiding out in Witness Protection but all you could think about were the days when the rules didn't apply to you? Could you stand the toil of an average life after years of leaving destruction in your wake? And what if you couldn't stand it? What would you do then? INCOGNITO - a twisted mash-up of noir and super-heroics - by best-selling creators Ed Brubaker (The Death of Captain America) and Sean Phillips(Marvel Zombies) with Val Staples on colors. And continuing Criminal's single issue tradition, each issue of Incognito has more pages of story content, as well as articles on pulp and noir and behind the scenes looks!”
Justice Society of America #22 – This is the conclusion of the Kingdom Come saga. After all the build up and the almost year long story line, I’m certainly anxious to see how it all ends. The hype “Written by Geoff Johns and Alex Ross; Art by Alex Ross and Dale Eaglesham and Nathan Massengill; Cover by Alex Ross. Concluding the sequel to KINGDOM COME and featuring several pages of painted interiors by Alex Ross! The Justice Society have had their greatest wishes granted, but at what deadly price? As war breaks out among the Justice Society, the cost of Gog's watchful eye comes to light. But removing Gog from Earth will cost more than they could ever imagine. This finale will leave the Justice Society torn apart...and see a new team rise out of the ashes!”
Madame Xanadu #7 – Easily the best new series that started in 2008, each issue has been a gem and I’m hoping for a hard cover of this series. What’s inside “Written by Matt Wagner; Art and Cover by Amy Reeder Hadley and Richard Friend. You can't escape the past! Fast forward in Madame Xanadu's past as she returns to England after a millennium in exile. Reduced to a much lower state of affairs and telling fortunes in London's notorious Whitehall district, her tarot readings foresee the brutal multiple murders of several prostitutes – a series of crimes the newspapers credit to the self-named "Jack the Ripper"!”
Scalped #24 – This is a gut shot each and every issue. This arc is not even about Dash and yet it has lost none of its emotion or compelling nature. My only hope for this series is that Aaron has an ending planned, as I think the best series have an end point. The word “Written by Jason Aaron ; Art by R.M. Guera; Cover by Jock. "The Gravel In Your Guts" comes to its shockingly violent conclusion. The dark roads Chief Red Crow and fledgling criminal Dino Poor Bear have been traveling finally bring them together – with haunting repercussions for both."
Superman #683 – The “New Krypton” saga has been an almost seamless cross-over event as each issue from Action to Supergirl to Superman picks up perfectly from the last issue. It is also the biggest change in the status quo in Supeman’s world in a long time. I wonder how this will fit into “Final Crisis”. The company line “Written by James Robinson and Geoff Johns; Art by Renato Guedes and Wilson Magalháes; Cover by Alex Ross. "New Krypton" part 9! Violence breaks out on Earth as the Kryptonians, enraged by humanity's treatment of them and their newly passed anti-Kryptonian laws, strike back! Imagine 100,000 people, each with the powers of Superman but lacking his humanity – and they're angry!”
The rest of the list:
30 Days of Night 30 Days Til Death #2 (of 4) - David Lapham, the acclaimed Eisner Award-winning creator of Stray Bullets, brings his unique brand of graphic storytelling to 30 Days of Night and IDW. In 30 Days ‘til Death, the horrible events of the Barrow have rippled throughout the world. A war has started in the secret society of vampires. A reaping. A death squad of elders has come to America to "thin the heard" of the troublesome new breed. Rufus doesn't give care about anything but his own survival and he's willing to do anything to ensure it, including getting a dog, and a girlfriend, pretending to like his neighbors, and going to extreme lengths to hide his insatiable craving for blood...
Back to Brooklyn #3 (of 5) - story Garth Ennis & Jimmy Palmiotti art & cover Mihailio Vukelic Lets face it; Brooklyn is a tough place to live. Add to that a pissed off marked man with a sawed off shotgun trying to save his family and you got some bloody fun as only Garth Ennis can deliver. Bob Saetta and his old flame Maggie Mahoney travel back to the old neighborhood in Bensonhurst to shake up the unshakeable, and realize that home sweet home has now becomes a blood-spattered hostile environment.
Batman #684 - Written by Dennis O'Neil ; Art by Guillem March; Cover by Alex Ross."Last Days of Gotham" part 2 of 2! In a world without a Batman, what happens when Commissioner Gordon lights the Bat-signal, in desperate need of assistance against the growing tide of crime sweeping his city? What does Nightwing do when his longtime partner fails to aid him in yet another of Two-Face's villainous assaults against Gotham? Without The Dark Knight to protect its walls, Gotham City may be facing its final days!
Blue Beetle #34 - Written by Matthew Sturges; Art and Cover by Rafael Albuquerque. "Boundaries" comes to its explosive conclusion as Doctor Polaris and Blue Beetle face off! Beetle's life is at stake and so are the futures of two communities already fractured by in-fighting!
Captain America #45 - Written by Ed Brubaker Penciled by Luke Ross Cover by Steve Epting Villain Variant by TBA It's Bucky versus Batroc and a mysterious foreign agent from his past as the Winter Soldier, as he fights to keep a secret super-weapon from falling into enemy hands! But the shocking ending of this three-parter brings a new twist to the mission... and sends our New Captain America in search of whatever is left of his old comrades, the Invaders.
Final Crisis Secret Files #1 - Written by Grant Morrison and Peter J. Tomasi; Art by Frank Quitely and various. Finally, the secrets of this year's most talked about event can be revealed! Witness how Darkseid's death shattered the Multiverse, creating continuity ripples throughout the DC Universe! Submit to Darkseid and read the full Anti-Life Equation! This is a book you cannot resist to buy!
Goon #31- Goon Year concludes! A brutal betrayal, and Goon's world is forever changed. Lonely Street will never be the same again, and that stands true for its longtime patrons--some will live, and some will die.
Guardians of the Galaxy #8 - Written by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning, Penciled by Paul Pelletier. WAR OF KINGS lead-in! All hail Blastaar, King of the Negative Zone! As Rocket Raccoon attempts to pull a new team of Guardians together, the big question is... what the d'ast happened to Star-Lord? Prepare for major curve balls and hi-octane action as Star-Lord squares off against the new warlord ruler of the Negative Zone....Blastaar! Just what is this feared FF foe planning to do with a certain high tech prison full of some of the Marvel Universe's worst super-offenders? And how does this all lead to War of Kings?
Jack of Fables #29 - Written by Matthew Sturges and Bill Willingham; Art by Tony Akins and José Marzan; Cover by Brian Bolland. The siege is on! In Part 2 of the status quo annihilating storyline, "The Siege of the Golden Boughs," Bookburner's army storms the gates and the fight begins in earnest! After this issue, the JACK OF FABLES universe will never be the same! Of course, whenever even the most minuscule event happens, the universe isn't technically "the same" afterward, but you get what we mean. Go buy it!
Justice League of America #28 - Written by Dwayne McDuffie; Art and Cover by Ed Benes. The Shadow Cabinet has stolen the mortal remains of Dr. Light. The Justice League has vowed to bring them down. Plus, Shadow Thief has returned deadlier than ever before, and you won't believe the source of his new powers.
Legion of Super Heroes #49 - Written by Jim Shooter; Art and Cover by Francis Manapul and Livesay” Timber Wolf goes berserk! A Legion Espionage Squad risks death to explore the heavily defended Intruder Planet. Lightning Lad finds comfort in the arms of…the president? Meanwhile, Phantom Girl is catastrophically injured, and she'll never be the same again! All this, and the beginning of the Universal Annihilation War!
Northlanders #13 - Written by Brian Wood; Art by Ryan Kelly; Cover by Massimo Carnevale. Hunter meets hunted when Ragnar and Magnus come face to face. The calm and studied demeanor of Ragnar is put to the test while Magnus, who has always justified his systematic campaign of executions as patriotism, wonders if he can rationalize the violence ready to erupt.
Proof #15 - story Alex Grecian art & cover Riley Rossmo 'Thunderbirds are Go!' ends with a bang! And a familiar face returns.
Superman Batman vs Vampires & Werewolves #6 (of 6) - Written by Kevin VanHook; Art and Cover by Tom Mandrake. Destroy all monsters! The Man of Steel and the Dark Knight Detective – with help from their own supernatural expert Etrigan, the Demon – battle Dr. Combs and his vampire and werewolf horde for the fate of all of Gotham City. But when the good doctor invokes a Lovecraftian beast to join the fight, it will be the ultimate monster mash for Superman and Batman!
Teen Titans #66 - Written by Sean McKeever; Art and Cover by Eddy Barrows and Ruy Jose. Teen guest stars galore! With only four members left, it's time for the Teen Titans to hold a recruitment drive! Who will make the cut, and who will be sent packing? Who will refuse to even show up, and who will bring a boatload of trouble with them?
Trinity #31 - Written by Kurt Busiek and Fabian Nicieza; Art by Mark Bagley and Art Thibert, Scott McDaniel and Andy Owens, Tom Derenick and Wayne Faucher and Mike Norton. The Dark Trinity, having revealed a traitor in their midst, attempts to take the newly ordered world by storm with a new recruit by their side! Meanwhile, find out exactly where the original Trinity – Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman – are and what's become of them and the strange new world they inhabit!
Wolverine #70 - Written by Mark Millar Pencils & Cover by Steve McNiven 'OLD MAN LOGAN' Fifty years ago the heroes of the Marvel Universe were massacred and as far as Old Man Logan is concerned, WOLVERINE died with them. During that final battle, something happened to Logan, something so traumatic that he hasn't popped his claws since. Now Logan lives out his days a shell of a man, his warrior spirit long since crushed by the horrible weight of the secret he carries with him. What happened? Finally, the darkest chapter in Logan's history can be told!
One of my shortest lists in a long time and with no hard cover collections or trades it is also a pleasantly less expensive week then normal. This is either the last week of 2008 or the first of 2009, but I’m for making this 2009 as that when we actually get the books. I have to say that the weekly trip to the comic store is always a plus and I think as 2009 progresses we will need the entertainment escape more then ever.