3.06.2015

3.11.15 [#PicksOfTheWeek]

#PicksOfTheWeek is brought to you with generous support from my retail sponsor Yesteryear Comics. Make Yesteryear Comics your choice in San Diego for great customer service and the best discounts possible on a wide selection of mainstream and independent titles. Customers receive an attractive 20% discount on new titles during their first week of release. Yesteryear Comics is located at 9353 Clairemont Mesa Boulevard.

This week, all eyes should be on Ed Brisson, Johnnie Christmas, and Shari Chankhamma’s Sheltered #15 from Image Comics, the final chapter of this genre-defying pre-apocalyptic tale that’s largely about the tension between millennials and their generational antecedents, all wrapped up in what is essentially a grand scale crime drama.

Image Comics is also offering Matt Fraction and Fabio Moon’s Casanova: Acedia #2, a title always worth a look, East of West #18 by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta, a title that pulls me into spirited debates with my LCS owner about which is the best Image Comic currently being published – East of West (his contention) or Lazarus (mine), as well as Southern Cross #1 by Becky Cloonan and Andy Belanger. I had the opportunity to read an advance copy of Southern Cross and I liked it just fine. It’s not exactly what I expected, but the ornate European-influenced design work and outsider protagonist have potential, and if you slap a Becky Cloonan cover on something, well, I’m usually a sucker for that. I’m also curious about The Surface #1 by Ales Kot and Langdon Foss, what looks to be some sort of organic sci-fi affair, and while I’ve yet to identify a book from the writer I’ve warmed to, I like the artist enough to give this first issue a go.

I think Marvel Comics has now set-up a publishing scheme in which they’ll be able to offer at least one new Star Wars related comic every single week, part of the Disney-helmed effort at multimedia marketing dominance. I have to admit, the franchise is still capable of moments of brilliance (Did you catch the season finale of Star Wars Rebels? My God. The lightsaber duel. The reveal of Fulcrum. The long slow descent of a Star Destroyer crashing down over Mustafar. Shit was on point!), even if the recent comics have left me somewhat cold as they stretch out Dark Horse’s last iteration over at least three diluted titles, with very uneven results. Nevertheless, I’ll pick up a copy of Star Wars #3 for my cousin who’s currently overseas, and give it a read. I’m honestly more interested in what will happen in Howard The Duck #1. It’ll be great to see what Chip Zdarsky is able to pull off with all eyes on him, and Joe Quinones is someone who’s been on my radar ever since those gorgeous Green Lantern pages in DC’s Wednesday Comics experiment.

Hey, it’s the only DC/Vertigo series I’m currently supporting, Astro City #21 by Kurt Busiek and Brent Anderson.  Astro City is sort of the comic book equivalent of a warm blanket on a cold night, reliable and comforting in a way that makes you nostalgic for deceptively simpler times. Oni Press is offering Hellbreak #1 by Cullen Bunn and Brian Churilla. I can’t say I’ve yet found a book from either creator I’m a fan of, but for the $1 introductory price point, that’s a very low risk gamble that I’m willing to take.

On the collected edition front, I wholeheartedly recommend Copperhead Volume 01: A New Sheriff in Town, which is probably the best in a whole slew of recent sci-fi offerings from Image Comics. For me, it just has the best elevator-pitch premise, basically “take your favorite Western and set it on Tatooine,” and executes it flawlessly, with a female protagonist to boot. 

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