12.03.14 [#PicksOfTheWeek]

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It seems like it’s either boom or bust, so after a huge Thanksgiving week, this week is relatively small in terms of the titles catching my eye. I’m excited for Kurt Busiek and Ben Dewey’s follow-up to their Game of Thrones meets Kamandi debut in Tooth & Claw #2. The first issue was dense and rich, with an ear for organic creativity and the type of easy-flowing dialogue that my favorite Busiek works (Arrowsmith, Astro City, Avengers) possess. Image Comics also has the raucous fun of The Humans #2 available from Tom Neely and Keenan Marshall Keller, as well as Rick Remender and Greg Tocchini’s Low #5, a book which fascinates me even more now that I’ve twigged onto the parent-child dynamic, a theme which recurs in most of the writer’s work. I thumbed through Spawn #248 when news broke that Brian Wood was going to be the new writer as of #250. I found it to be a disorienting experience a) after not reading it for, oh, 230 issues or so, and b) because a Twitter question I’d posed to Todd McFarlane was unexpectedly printed in the lettercol, but I’ll do the same requisite flip for Spawn #249 this week. One can only hope that Brian Wood and Jonboy Meyers will hit the reimage button and make this long-running creator owned work much more accessible.

On the collected edition front, there are a few gems worth your time. Burlyman Entertainment (the old Wachowski helmed publishing house I’d thought long defunct) is finally collecting the long out-of-print original seven issues of Geoff Darrow’s Eastern philosophized martial artist meets modernized version of the Old West drifter detail porn extravaganza (that is a mouthful!) in The Shaolin Cowboy. This series was terribly fun, particularly if you’re more concerned with what the craft can provide in terms of pure visual spectacle vs. any overt narrative expression. It’s an ethos which basically goes against my nature, but this series was so good, I didn’t mind. Oni Press also has the exquisite Wasteland Book 10: Last Exit For The Lost from Antony Johnston, Chris Mitten, Sandy Jarrell, et al., which is the penultimate trade collection of previously uncollected interlude issues that punctuated the space between formal arcs, all before the epic series wraps with #60, and assumedly an impending Book 11. Lastly, I’m curious to check out Cochlea & Eustachia, Hans Rickheit’s new 80 page graphic novel published by Fantagraphics, which looks to be equal parts mysterious body horror and Rickheit’s typically uneasy blending of the sinister and the comforting.


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