Clonk Vol. 01 GN by (W/A) Ximo Abadia
Clonk is a story of friendship, love and loss. Through elegantly crafted imagery and superb storytelling, artist Ximo Abadia explores the magic of childhood, its transitory nature and difficulties that come with growing up. Reminiscent of Goodbye Chunky Rice and the work of Norwegian artist Jason, Clonk is sure to strike a chord in the hearts of all readers regardless of age. $19.95 See some art samples here and visit Kettledrummer books here.
Lee: The art samples totally remind me of Jason’s work. This looks super intriguing and from the few previews, it looks like a book worth reading. Unfortunately, with all the other cool books coming out this month I don’t know if I am going to be able to afford it.
Gwen: The art makes me want to go play my Epic Mickey game for some reason. Not that that's a bad thing.
Pinocchio HC by (W/A) Winshluss
Winner of the Grand Prise at France's Angouleme Comics Festival in 2009. In this dark rendition, a greedy Geppetto builds Pinocchio as a metallic weapon of war, while Jiminy Cockroach is a homeless squatter living the good life in Pinocchio's skull. Exquisite drawings by celebrated cartoonist Winshluss bring to life a rich tale of greedy fools, lust, sadness, redemption, and hope. Winshluss has perfected the wordless comic with artwork primarily done in pen and ink, and watercolor which switches to paint for larger splash panels. $29.95 See previews here.
Lee: Last Gasp is better known for it’s underground and adult oriented material than bright colored men in spandex. Although there is plenty of bright colored spandex in their offerings… While I am sure this will be dark I am also sure it will be excellent. Winning the Angouleme Award is huge and a sign of a high quality story.
Gwen: I don't know how I feel about reworking Pinochio - I mean really did anyone need to come up with the idea of Jiminy Cockroach. Kind of creep me out. Yick.
Time Bomb SC by (W) Jimmy Palmiotti, Justin Gray (A) Paul Gulacy
When a hidden city is discovered beneath Berlin, Hitler's secret doomsday weapon - an Omega Bomb designed to wipe out the human race - is accidentally activated. Now, a team of specialists with state-of-the-art equipment and weaponry must travel back in time to stop the bomb from going off. However, they soon discover that they've been sent back, instead, back to the heart of Hitler's Germany. $14.95
Lee: Quietly, Radical manages to get top writers and artists to produce work for them. This book is loaded with talent! I’m not sold on the concept of Hitler’s doomsday weapon but if any creative team can make it interesting, it’s this one.
Gwen: Ah time travel into Nazi Germany... not really anything I want to read. Not that Nazi's don't make great bad guys but I prefer them as bad guys in Indiana Jones. I'm sure this will be well done with the creators on board.
Rebellion / 2000AD
Mean Machine: Real Mean SC by (W) John Wagner, Alan Grant (A) Steve Dillion, Greg Staples
Born and raised in the Cursed Earth as a member of the notorious Angel gang, Mean Angel (aka the Mean Machine) is one of the most dangerous criminals to ever plague Judge Dredd's Mega-City One. With his mechanical claw and head dial, which amps up his anger and aggression from Mean to Brutal, Mean Angel is one of Judge Dredd's toughest adversaries - a head-butting pyschopath with a penchant for destruction! $19.99
Lee: If you think the concept of a man with a dial on his head is silly in text, wait until you see it in print! An absolutely ridiculous that only gets better when played straight, this is too much fun to pass up. It doesn’t hurt that there will be plenty of over the top violence either.
Gwen: I used to really enjoy the older Judge Dredd comics and this looks like it could be ridiculous - but a lot of fun too.
Taxidermist SC by (W) John Wagner (A) Cam Kennedy, Steve Dillon
In Mega-City One, aged citizen Jake Saradini practices a delicate human art. Human Taxidermy is a highly-skilled craft and has been a sport in the Mega-Olympics for several decades. Saradini used to compete international, has even won a bronze medal, but that was long ago. In 2116, the Mega-Olympics comes to Katmandu, Nepal. All the typical sports of the 22nd-century are represented: insulting, staring, housework, mountaineering, sex, and, of course, Human Taxidermy. $24.99
Lee: How can I not recommend a comic in which the lead character is a human taxidermist? A very interesting premise with great art by Kennedy & Dillion make this an easy buy.
Gwen: All I can think of while reading this is how Jim has always told my sister and I that when he dies he wants to be stuffed and displayed with some sort of mechanical rigging that makes him move around when people walk by. Because Jim is special like that.
Sparkplug Comic Books
Whirlwind Wonderland GN by (W/A) Rina Ayuyang
Whirlwind Wonderland follows the life-altering exploits of a somewhat-normal Filipino American girl as she meanders through sleepy suburban sprawls, empty diners, fantasy-filled commuter traffic jams, misplaced football fanaticism, ethnic identity crash courses, and just good ole family hi-jinx. 128 pgs, 5.5" x 7.5", b&w, $15.00 Visit Rina here and read a sample here.
Lee: I’ve always had a soft spot for slice of life books, and while this doesn’t appear to be strickly real life, it does appear to be entertaining. I recommend checking out the previews for a better idea of what the inside holds.
Gwen: While I'm not terribly into slice of life books as Lee calls them this actually does intrigue me. I'm a sucker for stuff that reminds me of Alice in Wonderland too.
Heavy Hand GN by (W/A) Chris C. Cilla
Take an inky road trip with a liar (Alvin Crabshack) into the generally ignored world of mask-wearing freaks and monsters both dead and alive. Folk tales are made up by regular schmucks in party houses, caves and vans. Are you concerned about the eggs? Alvin has a story for whoever he meets, including you. Cult cartoonist Chris Cilla (The Diplomat) gets the graphic novel treatment, heads have been waiting. 108 pgs, 6" x 9", b&w, $14.00 See previews here.
Lee: And for as happy, or semi happy, as Whirlwind Wonderland sounds this is the other extreme. It appears to be more comix than anything else. There is certainly something for everyone this month.
Gwen: I'm really confused after reading that solicitation. I'm not sure what this book is supposed to be about.
Fighting American SC by (W) Joe Simon (A) Jack Kirby
The complete adventures of the quirky Cold War superhero, launched in 1954 by the creators of Captain America, are presented here in an affordable graphic novel format, with weird and wonderful characters like Yucha Liffso, Jiseppi the Jungle Boy, and Poison Ivan! These are the explosive adventures of the Cold War's answer to Captain America, by the great comics duo of Joe Simon and Jack Kirby! $19.95
Lee: The Fighting American is one of Simon & Kirby’s greatest creations and is well worth your investment. It’s equal parts parody and humor disguised as a superhero comic. It’s different from your stand S&K comics and worth every penny.
Gwen: I only vaguely remember this character being referenced at all. I'll have to take Lee's work on this one as really it just looks like another cape book to me.
Gwen: I really want that Matt Wagner Zorro book now. That's what I love about Indie previews - finding new awesome shiny books!
Lee: There was alot of new good material this month but I think I agree with Gwen. I think I need to check the Zorro book out.