Lee: IDW seems to be flooding the stands with their licensed products. There are multiple versions of Dr. Who, Transformers, Joe and everything else. It's getting hard to find non-licensed material from them.Thomm: And it’s off to the land of the licensed.
Chris Ryall (w) Alan Robinson (a) Eric Powell, Bill Morrison (c)
A special Leap Year 5th-week release! Bat Boy meets up at a bar with Groom Lake's Archibald to drunkenly discuss event comics like Infes2ation! Eric Powell and Bill Morrison provide covers! The Weekly World News creative team of Ryall and Robinson reunite here! What more do we have to say, people?! Celebrate February 29 in pointy-eared style! $3.99
Lee: We’re starting with humor this month because I haven’t seen a better cover yet! Just a fantastic tribute to Young Frankenstein.
Thomm: Too bad his thumb’s not on fire.
Various (w) Various (a) Andrew Pepoy (c)
The sensational sixties, a time of dreams, hopes, revolution, and social change! At the forefront of the decade were the nation's youth, enjoying the latest fads, speaking their minds, and defining a generation. Ever timeless, Archie and his friends came along for the ride, exploring both the fun and mores of the times with their unique brand of humor, as only they could! But Archie Comics was also around to remind everyone the more things change, the more they stay the same! Whether getting tangled up in the eternal love triangle or incurring the wrath of the principal and Veronica's father, Archie scaled new heights of hilarity! $24.99
Lee: I’ve seen people poo-poo these books but they really are a great deal of fun. Particularly the ‘Best of the 40’s’ and ‘50’s’ because life was sooo different. I love reading these to check out how styles have changed not to mention how badly the hip talk of the day can be mutilated by Archie and the gang. But probably, most of all, Girl loves these books so I get them all.
Thomm: Eh. Archie was ok when I was a kid but I’ve not kept up with it over the years. That was the ‘70s, so we’re almost to the point I would remember some of the stuff, but it was so corny to me as a kid I think I’ll let it pass.
Otto Soglow (w / a / c)
A BIG BOOK FOR A LITTLE KING! A long-overdue examination of the unique pantomime cartoons of Otto Soglow, who entertained millions for more than fifty years and whose influence remains current in the works of Chris Ware, Daniel Clowes, Ivan Brunetti, and others. This compendium features hundreds of pages of Soglow's most famous creation, The Little King-plus copious examples of his other work and a fascinating account by Jared Gardner of Soglow's long career that ranged from the socialist magazines of the 1920s to his long association with The New Yorker, which continues to use Soglow's art thirty-five years after his death. Soglow began experimenting with eliminating lines that weren't necessary while at The New Yorker, where he created The Little King in 1931. Lured by William Randolph Hearst, Soglow moved to the Sunday comic's section with The Ambassador until his contract with The New Yorker ended in 1934. The Ambassador led the way-in more ways than one-for the King, who remained a Sunday funnies mainstay until Soglow's death in 1975. Much of the humor in The Little King is aimed at puncturing pomposity, and Soglow accomplishes it with drawings that are, as Brunetti points out, tightly composed, exquisitely timed, carefully structured pieces of machinery. Otto Soglow's process of streamlining is at the root of why his cartoons have a timeless sophistication and elegance, and continue to entice new readers and cartoonists. It's high time for such a fitting tribute to this cartoon monarch. $49.99
Lee: Another expensive book but Soglow’s Little King is another lost masterpiece. You can read about the man and see examples of his art here. This is too pricey for me at cover so I shall look for it on the after market but it should be a great study about a wonderful comic strip.
Thomm: An expensive book, but wonderful content. As Lee says, if you can’t afford it now, look for it later. Or ask for it for Valentine’s Day if someone loves you enough.
Peter Beagle/ Peter Gillis (w) Renae DeLiz/ Ray Dillon (a) Renae DeLiz (c)
Whimsical. Lyrical. Poignant. Adapted for the first time from the acclaimed and beloved novel by Peter S. Beagle, The Last Unicorn is a tale for any age about the wonders of magic, the power of love, and the tragedy of loss. The unicorn, alone in her enchanted wood, discovers that she may be the last of her kind. Reluctant at first, she sets out on a journey to find her fellow unicorns, even if it means facing the terrifying anger of the Red Bull and malignant evil of the king who wields his power. Adapted by Peter B. Gillis and lushly illustrated by Renae DeLiz and Ray Dillon. $50
Lee: This is waaayyyy expensive but I am sorely tempted. The kids love the animated movie from the 80’s but I never saw/heard any buzz about this series. Part of me really wants to see it, part of me is worried about dropping big cash for a book that might not be any good.
Thomm: The terrifying anger of a New York soccer team? Is there benign evil? Ok, that was fun. This just isn’t my sort of thing and I’ve no experience with it, so I can’t really say if it’s any good, let alone worth $50.
Enrique Sanchez Abuli (w) Jordi Bernet (a / c)
The final volume in the Torpedo library delivers a gut shot of killer stories to the solar plexus. Luca Torelli, AKA the Torpedo, cuts a vicious swash of mayhem and murder through the criminal underbelly of 1930s Gotham. New York in those days was crammed full of diseased rodents, both the four and two-legged variety, and Luca was the exterminator! $25
Lee: I’ve picked even Torpedo solicitation since IDW started reprinting the series. I have bought every book and they are just great. If you like crime stories about amoral hit men then this is for you. Highly highly recommended.
Thomm: How does it compare to say, Parker? There’s a lot of the amoral protagonist stories out there, so unless this one separates itself from the pack, I’ll pass.
Lee: IDW always manages to entice me with something but it always seems so expensive! With Torpedo ending maybe they will print some of the other great series by Bernet.
Thomm: Best bet for me is the Infestation 2 One Shot. Humor’s the best approach for a mash up of licensed properties. I’m surprised you didn’t pick the Michael Wm Kaluta sketchbook, art guy.