But, hey, I do dig the movie Slacker. Richard Linklater is cool. Anyway, here's what I probably won't be buying:
New comics this week (Wednesday, 8/13/08):
Antoine Sharp The Atheist Vol 2 #1
I never did read the first volume/miniseries featuring this creation by Phil Hester. But it seemed interesting; Hester is a pretty imaginative guy, and I've loved his collaborations with Mike Huddleston (The Coffin, Deep Sleeper). So maybe I'll take a look at this sometime. This volume sees Kevin Mellon on art, rather than John McCrea (who might not have even finished out the first volume; I'm not sure).
Atomic Robo Dogs of War #1
Hey, did I mention that I totally dug the first Atomic Robo miniseries? Because I did (dig it, that is). And here's some more. I might even get to review it, so stay tuned to hear what I think.
Freedom Formula #1
Speaking of reviewing stuff, I'll hopefully have something about this futuristic robot-racing series up at IndiePulp soon. It's weird and interesting. From Radical Comics (was "tubular" taken?), and featuring some interesting effects. Ah, you'll see what I'm talking about. I'm such a tease.
Galaxy Quest Global Warning #1
I have no idea if this will be any good (it's written by Scott Lobdell, which doesn't exactly make me want to rush out and buy it; he's kind of a workmanlike writer with little in the way of memorable appeal), but it's interesting, in that the movie is fairly good, but old enough that few are probably going to jump at the chance to read comics based on it. A weird choice, but it could be fun. Oh well, it's not like I'm going to read it anyway.
I thought this came out a couple months ago, but maybe it didn't make it and is only showing up now. Phil Hester again, writing about a dumb guy who gets appointed as Heaven's warrior against demons that are attacking the earth even though the end times were canceled. Sure, why not? It's "for fans of Preacher and The Goon", which would include me, except I'm not a fan of stuff that's for fans of other stuff. How's that for a paradox?
The Goon #27
Speaking of The Goon (which is what I'll be doing, in my sleep, since I'm forgoing buying the series), here's the newest issue. It's another one of those anthology-type issues, with short stories by Eric Powell, Kyle Hotz, and Rebecca Sugar (who did that super-sad story that I linked to last week). These sorts of issues are usually a little bit disappointing (especially since the regular plot won't be furthered), but they'll probably be enjoyable enough. So lap it up, you bastards that can afford to read it.
Hellboy The Crooked Man #2
And I don't care if I can't afford it, I'm buying this issue. I love when Richard Corben draws Hellboy, and the first issue of this was awesomely weird and creepy. I bet he and Mignola will keep the vibe going.
The final issue of Garth Ennis' long-running tenure on the "adult" version of the Punisher. And somehow, I've yet to read any of it (unless you count spinoffs, like Born, Barracuda, The Cell, or The Tyger). Now that it's over, I should really consider looking for some of the collections at the library or something. I've never been too big a fan of the character, but Ennis manages to tell some pretty great stories using him, and I constantly hear about it being so good. So, I'll catch up, someday, someday, always someday.
Punisher Kills the Marvel Universe #1 Skrull Variant
I have read this one though, and while it's somewhat amusing, it's not nearly as great as the reputation it seems to have accumulated. It's an earlier Ennis work (is it the first Punisher story he wrote?), and I don't think he had a handle on the character yet. Also, it seems to be going for the "superhero satire" that Ennis has become known for on books like The Pro, The Boys, or the non-MAX Punisher, but it's way too serious, lacking that darkly comic touch he can bring to his tales of violence. Really, it's an interesting curiosity, but don't expect anything great if you haven't read it. Or maybe you're just buying it for the nonsensical Skrull variant cover, in which case you probably don't care one way or the other. Enjoy, weirdo!
Secret Invasion: Thor #1
Does anyone else get the feeling that Matt Fraction really wants to write a Thor book? Because here he is, writing another one-shot (or is it a miniseries? Do I really care?) about the character, trying to make him cool again. In this case, he's teaming up with Beta Ray Bill to fight Skrulls, which does sound like fun. Probably better than whatever boring shit is probably going to happen in the Secret Invasion: X-Men miniseries. Art by Doug Braithwaite. Yeah, I'll give it a flip-through if I bother going into the shop this week.
I enjoyed the first issue of this outer-space murder mystery from Boom! Studios, so I'll give this one a look. And maybe I'll even write something about it to boot!
Tales Designed To Thrizzle #4
Another victim of my slashed budget, but it's one that I regret not getting. Michael Kupperman's weird humor book is almost always laugh-out-loud funny, so check it out if you haven't before. Can anything match up to the hilarity of porno coloring books?
Universal War One #2
I thought the first issue of this European series (published by Marvel, in their deal with French publisher Soleil) was interesting, but I don't think I would pay six bucks a pop to read more of it. I was going to review it, but I wasn't able to get my hands on a preview PDF. Poor me. But maybe you'll like it, if you bother to look. Come on, take your eyes off Wonder Woman's ass and see what else is on the shelves!
Welcome To Hoxford #1
In another example of the tragedy of my lack of funds, I'm going to have to pass on this new Ben Templesmith series. Damn. It's about a prison/mental hospital full of murderers and psychopaths, which is a subject matter right up Templesmith's alley. I bet it will be great.
X-Men Origins Jean Grey
For those of you who like the overly "artistic" renditions of stories telling the secret pasts of characters that run around in silly costumes, here's a one-shot about that one X-Men character who is a girl. Actually, I make fun of it, but I would consider buying it if I had money, for one reason: it's written by Sean McKeever. He can write teenage girls surprisingly well (in what is probably a very non-surprising revelation, I was a big fan of his Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane), so it will probably be a good read, if you can bear Mike Mayhew's Alex Ross-lite painted style. Is that a recommendation? I dunno.
Amazing Remarkable Monsieur Leotard TP
This is already out, but maybe it's just now making it to the direct market. It's Eddie Campbell's story about an influential circus acrobat who stumbles through history. I'll tell you all about it, once I get the chance to read it. Soon. Soon!
A Treasury Of 20th Century Murder Vol 1 The Lindbergh Child
It looks like Rick Geary exhausted the subjects for his "Victorian Murder" series, since he's moved on to the 20th century. Which is fine; he'll be sure to find strange tales of death no matter what era he chooses, and I'm sure he'll continue to render them in his uniquely unsettling manner. I'll try to read it when I can.
Black Diamond Get In The Car And Go TP
Larry Young's oddball story about a raised, continent-spanning highway of freaks and debauchery in a near-future America looked to be in interesting read. I've got a review copy at home, so I expect I'll get to it soon. Watch for it!
Bone Boxed Set #1
It seems like some new Bone item comes out every month or so, doesn't it? Here's a boxed set of the first three volumes, averaging out to about nine dollars each. It's as good a way as any to experience the series if you haven't previously. Why haven't you previously? Come on, man, haven't you been hearing all the accolades for the last decade? Get with the picture!
Clockwork Girl HC
It's the collection of the nice-looking series about a girl who is gear-driven. I still wouldn't mind looking at it.
Comics And Sequential Art TP Norton Expanded Edition Graphic Storytelling And Visual Narrative TP Norton Expanded Edition
Will Eisner. 'Nuff said. Okay, maybe not quite 'nuff. Not having read all of Eisner's comics (I've had Life, in Pictures sitting in my "to read" pile for way too long), I don't feel like I have to read these comics theory volumes quite yet, but they're definitely something I hope to get to someday. But if you're curious about how much of a master of the form Eisner was, get 'em.
Deathblow And Then You Live TPB
While I know nothing and care less about this Jim Lee-created character, I heard that this short-lived, Brian Azzarello-written volume of the series was awesomely ridiculous, featuring silly concepts like a dinosaur with the brain in Osama Bin Laden. DC was nice enough to collect the whole thing here, so even though I can't afford it, I might buy it anyway.
Delphine Vol 3 TP
The latest (and penultimate) issue of Richard Sala's Ignatz book. Sala is another one of those cartoonists I always feel I need to catch up on. I used to dislike his style, but after seeing samples online, I've come around on it, but I still haven't read any of his comics. I'll get to them at some point, I'm sure. Anyway, members of Fantagraphics' website (registration is free) can read a free four-page preview.
From The Shadow Of The Northern Lights TP
I think this is that collection of Swedish comics that everybody was raving about at Mocca earlier this year. As I often say, I love getting the chance to check out comics from around the world, so I'll definitely read this one if I get the chance.
Grotesque Vol 2 TP
The other Ignatz book of the week, from Sergio Ponchione. I don't know if it's good (other than being considered part of "International Graphic Novels At Their Zenith"), but it's there. Fanta also has a preview of this one at their site, but it was originally printed in the Free Comic Book Day 2008 sampler, so you might have seen it already.
Middleman Collected Series Indispensability Compendium SC
If you've watched any of the TV adaptation of this series (and I'm sure you have, since I'm sure the audience of ABC Family overlaps extensively with readers of this blog), you know how enjoyable it is. Well, now you can get caught up on the original stories, most of which have already been adapted as episodes of the show. Javier Grillo-Marxuach and Les McClaine have put together a really fun series with some highly appealing artwork. This volume collects the whole series to date. Read it! And you can check out my review of volume 3, if you like.
MOME Vol 12 Fall 2008 TP
Speaking of series I feel like I should read, I really should check out this anthology series sometime. Not that I can afford it. This issue features David B., Paul Hornschemeier, Dash Shaw, Al Colombia, and many others. Sounds like good stuff.
New X-Men by Grant Morrison Ultimate Collection Vol. 2
Yes, this is apparently an "ultimate" collection (not to be confused with Marvel's Ultimate Universe), so throw out that $100 omnibus of Morrison's entire run on the series. Or get this one, if you don't yet own the comics in some version. It's quite good (for the most part).
Spider-man Kravens Last Hunt Premiere TPB
One of the better-regarded Spider-Man stories of the last twenty years, although some might look at it as the point where the series got too serious. I dunno, I thought it was good the last time I read it (in a trade collection that I got at a used book store for 75 cents, ha ha), but that was a while ago. Maybe it actually sucks. But if you like your superheroes having psychological breakdowns, this is the book for you.
Testament Vol 4 Exodus TPB
For the first year or so, I really liked this bizarre Vertigo book about weird mystical connections between the Old Testament and a future ruled by an Orwellian, techno-totalitarian government. But at some point it went off the rails for me, and I lost interest, possibly because I found it too difficult to follow from month to month. So, did anybody keep up with the book through this final volume, when it was cancelled? Or did everybody else bail too, explaining that abrupt ending?
Yoko Tsuno Vol 3 Prey & The Ghost TP
This is one of those European comics published by British company Cinebook, and it involves a girl who is an electronic engineer who travels around the world helping her friends, while getting involved in fantastical and sci-fi adventures. It sounds pretty neat. I doubt I'll ever read it, but it does look interesting. Here's Cinebook's site, with a couple sampler pages.
Black Lagoon Vol 1 TP
On the manga front, Viz has this action series about pirates (the modern kind, not the peg-legged, eyepatch-wearing type), mercenaries, assassins, and whatnot. I've got a copy on my review pile, so I'll have a review up sometime soon, hopefully.
Gimmick Vol 2 GN
I reviewed the first volume of this series about special-effects makeup, and found it fairly mediocre. But it might get better, so somebody let me know if it does.
One-Pound Gospel Vol 2 TP 2nd Edition
I also reviewed the first volume of this Rumiko Takahashi boxing series, and really liked it, so I'll definitely try to read this second volume. It's good stuff.
Samurai Champloo Complete 2-Volume Series TP
So, is this manga any good? I love the anime, but I have no idea if this manga lives up to its excellence. I believe it's a spinoff of the anime (which is different from the norm, with anime series usually stemming from a manga), and I could definitely see it being a cheap cash-in, rather than something that captures the TV series' unique energy.
Yen Plus Magazine #2 Sept 2008
Hey, didn't the first issue of this new anthology just come out? Well, it's good that they're getting it out there, I guess. I would have tried to pick up that first issue if I could afford it, but it looks like I'll be observing this interesting experiment from afar. I do think we could stand to use more manga anthologies, so I hope it succeeds. Go manga/comics!
Okay, that's enough of my prattling. I don't know if I'll go to the comics shop this week, but I'll consider it, if only to get Hellboy and last week's Special Forces. Yeah, go comics! Maybe I'll even write something about them at some point.