I’m having “comic news” overload. I put the term in quotes as I don’t think we get anything approaching news in the industry very often. What we see is all about press releases and interviews with creators to promote their projects. This is the type of stuff that we do here on this website, but remember we are just four people who like comics and enjoy getting to know some of the creators. We have never wanted to go after “news” nor do we have the time. In fact of the major sites Bleeding Cool is the only one that ever approaches anything close to news coverage and that is a sad testimony unto itself. CBR, Newsarama, Comics Continuum all do a nice job in publishing the press releases and getting some interviews, doing some Q&As with the EICs of both Marvel and DC, but especially after San Diego Comic Con I find that I almost don't care anymore. Marvel buys Marvelman was a big items, but until you tell me you are reprinting the material by Alan Moore, I don’t care. A new Marvelman series is probably coming out, again I’m stifling a yawn. New books, new projects and people signed on to do different things at some point in time of some undefined future are no longer worth my efforts. Let me know when you are actually soliciting the book and maybe, maybe I will get interested. I don’t want to look so far ahead that I can’t enjoy what is coming out in two days. Generating a “buzz” maybe the cool thing to do, but at this point I will read the headlines and occasionally peek underneath the see the article, but for now I have information overload.
The books I’m looking forward to most this week are:
The books I’m looking forward to most this week are:
Absolution #1 (of 6) – This is Christos Gage being given a chance to shine. I think he has done good work for Marvel, Wildstorm and DC but has yet to have a breakout book, this could be it. The pitch “You've seen Christos Gage's work for Marvel, WildStorm, IDW and others, but you've never seen his imagination unleashed with absolutely no restrictions...until now. ABSOLUTION introduces John Dusk, a superhero in a world where they're a sanctioned arm of law enforcement. But this veteran hero has been scarred by his exposure to man's infinite capacity for evil, and he's seen one too many perpetrators escape justice. One day he crosses the line...lets a murderer die...and discovers it feels good. Surrounded by sociopaths, both human and superhuman, who he knows will prey on others if they're not stopped--permanently--how far will he go, knowing every step he takes puts him further on a collision course with his teammates Alpha and The Servant, not to mention his homicide detective girlfriend? Drawing on his experience writing for TV crime dramas like Law & Order: SVU, and his years of acclaimed work on comics like G.I. Joe: Cobra, StormWatch: PHD, and Avengers: The Initiative, Gage and artist Roberto Viacava bring you a riveting, no-punches-pulled saga that fans of shows like The Shield and Dexter, or comics such as Powers and Sleeper, won't be able to put down. He wants to be forgiven...but he doesn't want to stop."
Captain America Reborn #2 (of 5) – Part 1 left me cold, but Brubaker is a good writer and I hope he can make this work. The Quantum Leap / Lost Captain America does not work for me, but I’m hoping. The wind up “The race for Steve Rogers is on! On one side - BUCKY and the BLACK WIDOW and members of the AVENGERS and FANTASTIC FOUR! On the other - NORMAN OSBORN and HAMMER, THE RED SKULL and his evil hordes, with DR. DOOM waiting in the wings! And where... oh where, is the real Captain America? Ed Brubaker, Bryan Hitch and Butch Guice bring you the biggest Marvel comic of the year!”
Doom Patrol #1 – This group has had many incarnations, but Arnold Drake (the original writer) said Morrison got it right. The group was never built to be a straight super-hero group. The last incarnation I remember of them was as the “Addams Family” in Teen Titans. The delivery “Written by Keith Giffen; co-feature written by Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis; Art by Matthew Clark; co-feature art by Kevin Maguire; Cover by Matthew Clark. Come one, come all! The world's strangest Super Heroes are back, and they brought those robot guys along with 'em! Thrill to the strange adventures of the Doom Patrol, with script by Keith Giffen and art by Matthew Clark! Whether you think you know 'em or you wouldn't know 'em if they bit you on the behind, this Doom Patrol's for you! But that's not all! Read all the way to the back cover for the all-new adventures of those elemental everymen, the Metal Men, featuring the triumphant return of the creative team that brought you JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL! That's 40 full pages of comic-bookery for just under four American dollars. So why not try some Doom Patrol with a side order of Metal Men today?”
Echo #14 – One of the best series on the stands. I was very happy to hear that Terry Moore has optioned this book for a possible movie and he was paid some decent bucks. I love seeing creators reap the reward of their creations. The word “Julie and Dillon find a valuable ally inside the HeNRI company who reveals the true purpose of Foster's Phi Project-a massive machine designed to recreate the Big Bang.However, this machine will use the Phi Principle, guaranteeing success - and ending all life as we know it with a complete reboot of the universe. With Annie dead, the only one who can stop Foster and his doom machine now is Julie Martin.”
Ghost Riders Heavens on Fire #1(of 6) – While I’m not crazy about Marvel canceling Ghost Rider to re-launch the last arc by Jason Aaron as a mini-series, I am happy about seeing the conclusion of Aaron's take on Ghost Rider. PS to Marvel good luck on getting me to follow the character after Aaron leaves. The marketing blather “The acclaimed Ghost Rider run of writer Jason Aaron reaches its fever-pitched conclusion with six more issues of insanity, all jam-packed with new villains, old allies and the same old grindhouse action that Flamehead fans have come to know and love. The renegade angel Zadkiel is out to thwart Biblical prophecy by assassinating a young boy bred by Satanists to rule the world, so if Ghost Riders Johnny Blaze and Danny Ketch are going to save the world, they'll first have to save the Anti-Christ. Guest-starring Hellstorm, the Son of Satan.”
Irredeemable #5 – Waid’s deconstruction of a Superman type character continues. This is just a great read month after month. I’m really looking forward to why the Plutonian finally snapped. Boom Studios says inside this issue is “This is your chance to hop onboard the superhero event of 2009 that dares to ask: What if the world's greatest hero decided to become the world's greatest villain? Buy issue #5 for .99 cents and get the trade of the first four issues for only $9.99 and experience what everyone has been talking about, a 'twilight of the superheroes'-style story that examines super-villains from Mark Waid writer of Kingdom Come and Empire!”
Luke Cage Noir #1 (of 4) – The Noir books from Marvel get one issue to draw me in or not. The only one I have enjoyed enough to make it worth the money was Spider-Man. Still Luke Cage should work well for this idea. The hype “A lot can change in ten years. And rarely for the better. Local legend, Luke Cage, invincible, unstoppable, unflappable, finds that out the hard way when he returns to the mean streets of Prohibition-era Harlem after a ten-year stretch in Riker’s Island. All he wants is to be back in the loving arms of his woman, but certain powerful men have different plans for Cage. Willis Stryker, Cage’s childhood friend turned Godfather of Harlem, wants him on his crew, and under his thumb. And wealthy white socialite Randall Banticoff, whose wife is now very dead, murdered in a Harlem alley, wants Cage to investigate her death. Cage is about to learn that coming home is never easy, and to survive he might just have to kill a whole lot of people.”
The Red Circle: The Hangman – JMS has been on an incredible run lately and if he is writing it, I want to read it. The Red Circle heroes from Archie comics have been tried before by DC, but last time they were given their own label, this time they are part of the DCU. If anyone can make it happen it is JMS. What’s inside “Written by J. Michael Straczynski; Art by Tom Derenick and Bill Sienkiewicz; Cover by Jesus Saiz. J. Michael Straczynski dives into the DC Universe at last – and he's bringing four of the finest heroes of the Golden and Silver Ages with him! Completely reimagined for the modern world from their original appearances in Archie/MLJ publications, these four heroes will show you a side of the DC Universe you've never seen before! The Civil War claimed many lives…but one of those lives still hasn't ended! Union doctor Robert Dickering found himself on the wrong side of the battle lines, and despite his heroic treatment of a fallen enemy soldier, he also found himself on the wrong end of a noose! But a shadowy power stepped forth in the twilit moments between life and death and offered him a deal he couldn't refuse: to forever roam the Earth, saving the lives of innocents condemned like himself – or hastening the deaths of the guilty! But in taking the seemingly righteous mission of the Hangman, has he accepted God's work? Or has he become the vengeful fist of the Devil himself? Featuring art by Tom Derenick and Bill Sienkiewicz, the acclaimed team behind REIGN IN HELL!”
War of Kings #6 (OF 6) – This has been an excellent little event in the cosmic side of the MU. Also I think the series has stood well just on its own accord. The ending should be good as Abnett/Lanning almost always delivery. The company line “This is it – the big fight for all the cosmic marbles! Shi'Ar vs. Inhuman! Black Bolt vs. Vulcan! Who will rule? The fate of two intergalactic civilizations teeters on the brink, and the outcome of this conflict will send shockwaves throughout the Marvel Universe!”
The rest of the list:
Agents of Atlas #9 - The Agents of Atlas find themselves racing around the world to rescue their leader! Jimmy Woo and M-11 find themselves under the talons of the most terrible power in China...the deadly- and beautiful- JADE CLAW! With more minions than the Atlas Empire and the more advanced killer robot M-25, it seems nothing can stop her, and Jimmy has now set off war with her organization THE GREAT WALL. Lesson: never look up your ex-girlfriend!
All Winners Comics 70th Anniversary Special – Captain America and Bucky…the Human Torch and Toro…the Sub-Mariner…Miss America…the Whizzer…THE ALL-WINNERS SQUAD! It's 1946 and World War 2 is over, but the memory of those lost in the War haunts everyone— especially when Times Square is overrun by undead soldiers wanting their lives back! And leading this tattered battalion are the two casualties the All-Winners Squad can't fight— the original Captain America and Bucky! Plus: a surprise romance that has all the tabloids a-twitter! "Old Soldiers Never Die…" by Karl Kesel (MARVEL APES) and Steve Uy (AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE) Buy Bonds! And this comic!
Astro City The Dark Age Book Three #4 (of 4) -Written by Kurt Busiek; Art by Brent Anderson; Cover by Alex Ross. As the world faces cosmic annihilation, Charles and Royal's mission of vengeance takes them into the heart of the danger. Will they get their revenge? And what price will they pay? Featuring Honor Guard, the Silver Agent, the First Family, the Omega Rangers and more in a destructive showdown that could tear Astro City – and the Williams brothers – apart.
The Authority #13 - Written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning; Art and cover by Simon Coleby and Cliff Rathburn. Kaizen Gamorra has become a scourge of World's End, possessing the bulk of the working technology on the planet. He hungers for more, however, and is willing to destroy any in his path to acquire it. He's set his sights on the Carrier – and The Authority have a fight on their hands they might not be able to win!
Batman Confidential #32 – Written by Peter Milligan; Art by Andy Clarke; Cover by Guillem March. Batman goes to Moscow in part 2 of this 5-part story! After the Tsar threatens to take over the Gotham City mob, Batman shows how far he's willing to go to protect not just his city but also his country. But what's waiting for The Dark Knight in Moscow packs a much bigger punch than he expects. Find out what happens when the Bat meets the Bear!
Chew #3 – Amelia Mintz is a food critic and a Saboscrivner. That means she can write about food so accurately, so vividly and with such precision, people get the actual sensation of taste when reading her restaurant reviews. Since the government prohibition of poultry, she's lost her enthusiasm for the culinary world, and only reviews restaurants with a 'D' rating or less from the Health Department. Her last review caused half the city to projectile vomit, and sent hundreds to the hospital with severe food poisoning. Agent Tony Chu has been assigned to arrest Amerlia Mintz, but there's just one problem with thatÖ he's madly in love with her! Presenting the weirdest comic you will read all month, and maybe the best, as the deliciously twisted new series about cops, crooks, cooks, cannibals and clairvoyants continues!
Dead Run #3 - “All Speed. No Limits.” The end isn’t near… it’s here. America has become a wasteland, leaving the few cities that remain transformed into impenetrable fortresses. NICK MASTERS is a driver, the best there is. If you need something picked-up, delivered, or disposed of, Nick’s your man. But when he fails to deliver… all hell breaks loose. Part three of the epic saga that redefines the science fiction action genre. From the writer of HEXED and FALL OF CTHULHU, Michael Alan Nelson, collaborating for the first time with EUREKA creator Andrew Cosby!
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep #2 (of 24) – In 2021 Earth is a far uglier place. Most humans are on Mars but Deckard's back home, among the wretched. See San Francisco as its denizens try to live in the aftereffect of World War Terminus. If they think human life is hard, try being an android among the masses! Covers by Bill Sienkiewicz, Moritat, and Scott Keating.
Dynamo 5 #23 - The last time Dynamo 5 encountered Whiptail, they barely survived. Now they're faced with a Whiptail epidemic! Meanwhile, Father Gideon's sinister plan kicks into high gear.
Final Crisis Aftermath Run #4 (of 6) – Written by Matthew Sturges; Art by Freddie E. Williams II; Cover by KAKO. In this issue, someone dies! Actually, in this issue, tons of people die! If you thought RUN! was full of trashy humor and unnecessary violence before this issue – you ain't seen nothing yet! We cause more property damage and hideous disfigurement in the first half of this issue than any other comic you'll read this year (besides RUN! #5 and #6, because those are pretty ridiculous too). Join in the fun!
Frankenstein’s Womb GN - 1816 was called “The Year Without A Summer.” In the weird darkness of that July’s volcanic winter, Mary Wollestonecraft Godwin began writing FRANKENSTEIN on the shore of Lake Geneva in Switzerland. But that is not where FRANKENSTEIN began. A few months earlier, en route through Germany to Switzerland, Mary, her future husband Percy Shelley, and her stepsister Clair Clairmont approached a strange castle. Some say they passed it by. Some say they came upon it at night and saw nothing. Castle Frankenstein, some one hundred years earlier, had been home to Johann Conrad Dippel—a theologian, a writer, and that region’s most notorious alchemist. His experiments included the independent invention of nitroglycerin, a distillation of the elixir of life… and the transfer of a live soul into an awful accretion of human body parts. Mary enters the castle on her own. So it’s only Mary who finds Dippel’s tower: the place where he worked, the place where he was born, the place where he signed his letters Frankensteinensis—Born in Frankenstein. And she finds something haunting the tower. This weird spectre leads Mary through past and future—the history of alchemy and the strange story of Johann Dippel, and the events to come in Mary’s own life, a litany of death and sorrow.
Greek Street #2 - Written by Peter Milligan; Art by Davide Gianfelice; Cover by KAKO. Monsters, magic, gangsters and sex – this is the world of Greek Street that young Eddie has fled to. But will he stay one step ahead of the police? Will the ghost of the mother whom he killed continue to haunt him? Or will his dealings with the violent and treacherous mobsters, The Fureys, finally turn his already tough life into a complete tragedy?
House of Mystery #16 – Written by Matthew Sturges and Bill Willingham; Art by Luca Rossi and Richard Corben; Cover by Esao Andrews. A new storyline begins here, but the solicitation text for this issue has been stolen, and the following note left in its place: "Dear Constance, I've been having bad dreams. I am in a House, and there is a man summoning me...come quickly." The meaning of the note is unknown. The only certainty is that this issue's short story features the eerie art of Richard Corben (HELLBLAZER).
Invincible Iron Man #16 - WORLD'S MOST WANTED continues! Tony and Pepper, trapped in Tunguska by Madame Masque, play the ultimate game of truth or dare at the business end of a very loaded gun. Is Tony strong enough and smart enough to escape the clutches of a woman who burns to see him suffer? And halfway around the world, the Black Widow joins Maria Hill, and they summon the most good of all the good guys...CAPTAIN AMERICA! But is he willing to come to Tony's aid?
Jersey Gods #6 - Will Zoe's intense desire to own the only Frank Lloyd Wright designed house in Cherry Hill drive a wedge between her and Barock's love before they even get off the ground? And just who in the heck is Hecticus? And why is he out to make Barock's life a living Hell in New Jersey? This is part one of "The Abandoned" - an exciting dramatic five part story arc that sets the new status quo on earth - it's a perfect jump on point for new readers. MARK WAID and JOE INFURNARI continue their exciting Gods of Neboron Civil War back-up story.
Jonah Hex #46 - Written by Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray; Art and cover by Cristiano Cucina. "The Six Gun War" barrels onward! After the daring and dangerous rescue of Tallulah Black and Bat Lash, Jonah Hex flashes back to his days in a Civil War prison camp with none other than Jeb Turnbull!
Justice League Cry for Justice #2 (of 7) – Written by James Robinson; Art and cover Mauro Cascioli. The team continues its proactive hunt for justice as the trail leads to an army of Super-Villains. But the big bad may be deadlier than all of the new team combined…
Marvel Masterworks Sub-Mariner HC Volume 120 - Written by ROY THOMASPenciled by JOHN BUSCEMA, GENE COLAN & MARIE SEVERIN, Cover by JOHN BUSCEMA. Imperious Rex! Prince Namor, the Sub-Mariner has returned for another MARVEL MASTERWORKS adventure! Writer Roy Thomas and a trio of definitive Sub-Mariner artists are going to take comic's first anti-hero on one of his greatest adventures of all time! It's Atlantean vs. Inhuman when Namor faces off against Triton. Then, our hero must march through Attuma and the bloodthirsty Tiger Shark, in his first appearance, but the truly epic confrontation begins when the man called Destiny returns and his Helmet of the Ancients is revealed to be the powerful Serpent Crown. It's evil influence threatens the lives of Namor and his love, the Lady Dorma, and sends them across the seas to Lemuria to destroy the Crown or be destroyed by it! We couldn't forget the all-time classic, earth-rattling face-off between Namor and the Thing, not to mention the touching return of one of the Atlantean prince's friends from all way back in comics' Golden Age. It's Marvel's mer-man at his very best! Collecting SUB-MARINER #2-13.
Marvel Masterworks Golden Age Young Allies HC Volume 121 - Written by STAN LEE, OTTO BINDER & VARIOUS, Penciled by AL GABRIELE, JACK KIRBY, CHARLES NICHOLASWOTJKOSWKI, JACK ALDERMAN & VARIOUSCover by JACK KIRBY. The Young Allies, comics' very first boy-adventure team, leap into four-color action once more with their debut MARVEL MASTERWORKS volume! Super-hero sidekicks unite when Captain America's pal, Bucky and his Sentinels of Liberty team up with the Human Torch's protege, Toro, and take on the Axis! And they won't waste a second getting down to business. Right from issue #1 they take the fight straight to Berlin and, rest assured, the Red Skull, and even Hitler himself, won't be walking out of this one without a bloody nose. Next up, the Black Talon returns from the pages of CAPTAIN AMERICA COMICS to terrorize the Young Allies, or maybe that should be the other way around? There are 5th Columnists, Nazis, Imperial generals, spies, and action galore in each of these Timely classics. The Golden Age of Comics packed in cover-to-cover adventure, but there are few that can compare to the massive, 60-pages plus, issue-length adventures of the Young Allies! Collecting YOUNG ALLIES #1-4
The Mighty #7 – Written by Peter J. Tomasi and Keith Champagne; Art by Chris Samnee; Cover by Dave Johnson.Ring of fire! Gabriel Cole's predecessor, Taylor Rhines, continues to leave him bizarre hints about the dark secret of Section Omega. But time may have already run out for Cole to crack the code, as a terrible power has taken aim at his family!
North 40 #2 (of 6) - Written by Aaron Williams; Art and cover by Fiona Staples. As Conover County continues to transform into a supernatural sanitarium, the inmates flex their newfound "muscles." David Atterhull – now able to toss pickup trucks – and his kin begin to claim territory as well as hostages. Wyatt, discovering strange new powers of his own, is confronted by enemies from school; enemies that can now call on unnatural energies. And Alisha continues her crash course in being a witch. It's an apprenticeship that allies her with Sheriff Morgan, who has reason to believe Conover hasn't yet seen the worst of this mess.
Secret Six #12 - Written by Gail Simone; Art by Nicola Scott and Doug Hazlewood; Cover by Daniel Lu Visi. A crisis of conscience splits the Secret Six right down the middle and puts them on opposite sides of a horrific war involving Amazons led by a deluded Artemis! But that's just the opening bout for the main event: Jeannette vs. Wonder Woman!
Strange Adventures #6 (of 8) - Written by Jim Starlin; Art by Jim Starlin and Al Milgrom and Scott McDaniel and Andy Owens; Cover by Jim Starlin and Rob Hunter. Adam Strange and Comet enter the bizarre world of The Weird. And if they can convince Weird to give up his infinite power to the evil Synnar, is that a good thing – or the worst possible thing to happen?
Superman World of New Krypton #6 (of 12) – Written by Greg Rucka and James Robinson; Art by Pete Woods; Cover by Fernando Dagnino and Raúl Fernandez. It's chaos in Kandor as the 4-part "Codename: Patriot" storyline kicks off here and runs through the August Superman titles! Someone has been shot and Superman will stop at nothing to find the culprit! But when the shooter flees to Earth, can Superman stop him in time to prevent making the two planets even more hostile toward each other? Continued in ACTION COMICS #880!
War of Kings Warriors #2 (of 2) - Written by JAY FAERBER, Penciled by ADRIANA MELO & RAMON PEREZ, Cover by PAUL RENAUD. The royal women take center stage as we spotlight Crystal and Lilandra! When a group of disgruntled Kree launch a series of bombings aimed at the Inhumans Royal Family, Crystal is charged with quelling the violence--but can she bring the guilty to justice without causing civil war? Plus: a flashback story to one of Lilandra's earliest adventures, as the future Empress of the Shi'Ar must face a trial by fire ignited by the Brood! It's two brand new stories that spotlight key players in the War of Kings!
Warlord #5 – Written by Mike Grell; Art by Chad Hardin and Wayne Faucher; Cover by Mike Grell. Under the stars again! The subterranean world of Skartaris may be forgotten by those who walk the outer surface of our Earth, but for Travis Morgan, Earth itself is the forgotten world! Unfortunately, his first steps there in decades will put him square in the path of the Chinese army…
Wednesday Comics #5 (of 12) - I decided to move this to the bottom just because I have put it up top for four weeks, but I love this series. The solicitation copy “Various Writers and artists.WEDNESDAY COMICS, DC's spectacular 12-issue weekly series, continues to offer a comics experience unlike any other this August. In its second month, don't miss the action.”
Witchfinder in the Service of Angels #2 (of 5) - Mike Mignola teams up with artist Ben Stenbeck (B.P.R.D.: The Ectoplasmic Man) for a long-awaited glimpse into one of the Hellboy universe's greatest enigmas: nineteenth-century occult investigator Edward Grey! After his confrontation with a spectral assassin, Sir Edward hopes to find answers from a mysterious medium in London's underworld, but discovers only a labyrinthine tangle of conspiracy as the body count continues to rise.
This is a big week and one that has a lot of stuff that I can’t wait for. When you realize that there are no core Bat books, no Blackest Night, no Avengers book and it is still a great looking week it tells you how many strong titles there are on the market. Heck I could have moved Agents of Atlas, The Mighty, Chew, Jersey Gods, Secret Six and others to the top of the list, but then the bottom half would be stripped clean, which is how I like it, when almost all the books are highly anticipated.