5.17.2010

Coming This Week: "Don't Go Away Mad, Just Go Away"

I thought it might be fun this week to sort what’s on the horizon by publisher. First up, we have Art of Blade of The Immortal HC (Dark Horse). I’m a bit of an on-again-off-again fan of the Hiroaki Samura epic, but these “Art of” books from Dark Horse have been stellar. From Hellboy to the Usagi Yojimbo volume, they’re really beautiful coffee table books. For only $29.99, this will be tempting. Also out from Cheval Noir this week is End League TPB: Volume 2: Weathered Statues (Dark Horse). Shoot, I forgot all about this book. I bought the first couple of issues penned by Rick Remender, but when they started changing artists part way through and then there were multiple month delays between issues, I gave up. I’m not going to pay $16.99, but if I ever find it for 50% off, it might make decent reading. The book always seemed to have a strong core premise, but the execution was all over the map.

DC is going to end up with a large portion of my spend this week. DC Universe Legacies #1 (DC) is the first in a ten issue series from writer Len Wein that supposedly tells the history of the DC Universe over the course of its run. That doesn’t sound very enticing on the surface, but Len Wein was responsibe for many of the DC books I enjoyed as a kid, and when you factor in Andy Kubert, Joe Kubert, and J.G. Jones on this issue, it’s gets better. When I realized it was $3.99 for 40 pages and that JH Williams III and Dave Gibbons would be on forthcoming issues, suddenly I was very interested, and this could certainly be worth a look. Legion of Super-Heroes #1 (DC) could be an interesting chance at getting a foothold on this property, aided in no small part by Paul Levitz. Zatanna #1 (DC) also hits the street this week, and while the covers from Stephane Roux and Karl Story look fantastic, how long before this Paul Dini penned periodical gets cancelled? Zatanna seems to be one of those characters that everyone likes, yet is incapable of sustaining her own series. Brian Wood and Rebekah Issacs deliver DV8: Gods & Monsters #2 (DC/Wildstorm). Random anecdote, but I was chatting with the proprietor of an LCS last week about Brian Wood projects and he felt this title was inaccessible and that if you’re seeing characters for the first time, you need some info. I informed him that it had been a long time, but certainly wasn’t the first time, with Warren Ellis and Humberto Ramos delivering this Gen13 spin-off in the early/mid-90’s. I was met only by a blank stare. Since that’s neither here nor there, let’s move on to Ex Machina #49 (DC/Wildstorm), which means there’s only one more issue to go, and as far as my buying habits are concerned serves only as a footnote to Ex Machina: Deluxe Edition HC: Volume 3 (DC/Wildstorm). One of the best modern series around, though I gave up on single issues around #30 or so, realizing that it would all end at #50 and it reads so much better collected. Grant Morrison and Sean Murphy continue their quirky little tale, part self-aware, genre-blending fantasy adventure, part examination of psychological hallucination vis-a-vis insulin withdrawal, with Joe The Barbarian #5 (DC/Vertigo). Aside from all those “Grade A” assessments, I don’t often pimp specific books, but if there’s anyone out there who still hasn’t tried Scalped by Jason Aaron and R.M. Guera, please please please check out Scalped #1 (DC/Vertigo) for only $1 this week. I’ll be doing my part by purchasing Scalped TPB: Volume 6: The Gnawing (DC/Vertigo), which I think I read has an introductory essay by Matt Fraction.

Moving on to Marvel, here’s what the Diamond Comics New Releases List looked like around the Avengers area;

AGE OF HEROES #1 (OF 4) HA $3.99
ATLAS #1 HA $3.99
AVENGERS #1 HA $3.99
AVENGERS ASSEMBLE #1 HA $3.99
AVENGERS #1 I AM AN AVENGER BLANK CVR VAR (PP #914) $3.99
AVENGERS #1 PARTY EXCLUSIVE JRJR GATEFOLD VAR $3.99
AVENGERS #1 ROMITA SR VAR (PP #911) $3.99
ENTER THE HEROIC AGE #1 HA $3.99
HEROIC AGE MAGAZINE $9.99

Now, here’s me in my LCS;

“Umm. Yeah. Hi. Umm. I’d like to buy a book called, uhh, I think it's... Avengers #1, by Brian Michael Bendis and John Romita, Jr. Is that, umm, can I do that?”

I mean, I know that resetting Avengers to a post-Dark Reign-Age of Heroes-Heroic Age era is a priority and I’m sure a bunch of new #1’s with variant covers or whatever seems like the capitalist way, but sheesh, we’re not even on to New Avengers, Secret Avengers, Avengers Academy, and all that yet, and I’m already confused. There’s just nothing like devaluing your brand by saturating the market with tangentially related properties. I guess I'll try Avengers #1 (Marvel).

Anyway, on top of that cluster, we have Rescue #1 (Marvel) which could be an interesting one-shot about the Pepper Potts arc reactor suit, by Matt Fraction’s better half, Kelly Sue DeConnick. I haven’t read all of these recent Marvel one-shots, but the ones I have read have been great. Also up from Matt Fraction himself is the best book Marvel is currently publishing, Invincible Iron Man #26 (Marvel). Last up is Girl Comics #2 (Marvel). I remember being largely underwhelmed by this anthology, and then basically forgetting about it. The delay between issues didn’t help matters.

Sadly, there really isn't anything on the indie front this week that looked interesting, unless I missed something due to glossing over from the onset of "Marvel Malaise."

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