Monday, May 25, 2009

This week, I'm ahead of schedule

On this post, at least, and that's only because of the holiday.  Anyway, links:

The big news lately is that, hot on the heels of Shojo Beat's cancellation, Viz is launching a new online manga anthology, IKKI, which is based on the Japanese magazine of the same name.  Right now, the only comic they've got running is Daisuke Igarashi's Children of the Sea, but they will add more when the site has its "official" launch later in the year.  Apparently, they're also using it as a measurement of what to realease, with the popular series getting a print version.  Sounds quite interesting, and I'm happy to see more seinen manga being made available in English.  I expect I'll be a regular visitor.

Other neat news includes the upcoming release of Act-I-Vate Primer, a print anthology from the talents who publish webcomics at the Act-I-Vate site.  It will feature exclusive content from artists like Dean Haspiel, Roger Langridge, Nick Bertozzi, Mike Cavallaro, Mike Dawson, Michel Fiffe, Joe Infurnari, Molly Crabapple, and others.  That's a great lineup; I'm all over this one.

Other stuff to see online: art from the Ghibli Museum's display on Hayao Miyazaki's upcoming Ponyo on the Cliff.

You can also read the entire first issue of the second volume of Mouse Guard here.  I do like that series.

And I haven't read it yet, but Kentaro Takekuma, who wrote that interesting article about Miyazaki's Nausicaa a few weeks back, has another piece up, this time about Katsuhiro Otomo.

Okay, let's go:

New comics this week (THURSDAY, 5/28/09):

Back To Brooklyn #5

Has anybody been reading this Garth Ennis/Jimmy Palmiotti gangster series?  I remember reading reviews of the first issue or two, but nothing since then.  So here's the last issue; should I try to read it?  Probably not, is my guess.

Cursed Pirate Girl #1

I've seen the artist of this series, Jeremy Bastian, the last two years at Wizard World Chicago, and it looks like the comic is finally coming out.  It's been one I've been looking forward to, because the art is gorgeous.  You can see some preview images here, along with an interview of Bastian.

Dark Reign The Hood #1

I shouldn't care about this, since it's one of those obnoxious miniseries that tie into Marvel's current big "event", but it's notable due to being written by Jeff Parker, with art by Kyle Hotz (who also drew the original Brian K. Vaughan-written miniseries that introduced the character).  So maybe it will be good, who knows?  I should have a review of this first issue up at Comics Bulletin tomorrow.

Garth Ennis Battlefields Tankies #2

It's a big Garth Ennis week this week, with the second issue of his current war-based miniseries coming out, along with other stuff.  I decided to just buy the issues of these series, since the trades are more expensive than the monthlies (I hate that).  Maybe I'll even write about them sometime.

Glamourpuss #7

Ah, it's more of our regular dose of Dave Sim strangeness.  This issue is apparently about superheroines for some reason, including a Steve Ditko tribute (or something) named Ms. A.  I guess readers will get to vote on which character gets a spinoff miniseries, because lord knows we need some Dave Sim superhero comics.  Also, more art discussion, which is probably as interesting to Sim and five other people as usual.

Godland #28

This series seems to be lurching toward its final issue (which I think is #36, or thereabouts).  I'm currently reading the fourth collection, and it's a blast.  Keep up the Kirby tributes, Joe Casey!

Hero Squared Love and Death #3

I've read some of this Keith Giffen/J.M. DeMatteis series, and it's not bad.  This miniseries is finishing up the story (which, for those who don't know, concerns a regular schlub who gets involved in cosmic craziness when the version of him from another universe turns out to be a superhero), and it's been as funny and fairly enjoyable as ever.  It's another one that I should probably write about someday.

Ignition City #3

Warren Ellis' sci-fi series continues.  Like everything Ellis does, I'll probably get around to reading it at some point.

Immortal Iron Fist #26

It's the final issue of the current storyline, with our heroes escaping their otherdimensional prison and getting into a huge brawl, or something like that.  I've definitely been enjoying this series when I read it, so check it out if you gave up on it after Brubaker and Fraction left.

Last Days of Animal Man #1 (of 6)

I don't know if this will be worth reading (it's written by Gerry Conway, which isn't usually a sign of excellence), but here it is.  I think this is taking some cues from Grant Morrison's run on the character, but maybe it only seems that way because Brian Bolland is doing the covers.  Maybe worth a look?  Eh, probably not.

Literals #2 (of 3)

Part 6 of the Great Fables Crossover.  I don't know how that story will be collected, but I'm excited to read it.

Mouse Guard Winter 1152 #6

Hey, speaking of Mouse Guard (which I did up at the top of the post), here's the final issue of the second miniseries.  I've enjoyed it quite a bit, as always, and it's one that I've actually been readin in single issues, because it comes out so infrequently.  Good times; hopefully volume 3 won't take too long to get here.

Muppet Robin Hood #1

Everybody loves the Roger Langridge Muppet Show book, so here's another one, doing the thing that the Muppets still occasionally do, plugging the characters into a classic story.  No Langridge here though; this is written by Tim Beedle, with art by Armand Villavert, Jr.  Hey, it could still be good.

Northlanders #17

New story arc!  This one sees Vasilis Lolos on art, and it's apparently a detailed examination of a one-on-one Viking fight.  Cool.  I really need to catch up on this series.

Rapture #1 (of 6)

This is a new miniseries from Dark Horse, by Michael Avon Oeming and his wife Taki Soma.  It has something to do with a post-apocalyptic world that has been devastated by super-powered beings, and there are two lovers who have to deal with one of them being turned into some kind of angelic warrior.  Interesting; I definitely wouldn't mind checking it out.

Runaways #10

This appears to be a transitional issue in the gap between creative teams.  Two stories here, one by Chris Yost and Sara Pichelli, and the other by James Asmus and Emma Rios.  Might be okay, but I'm still waiting for Kathryn Immonen to come on board.  This should at least be a good opportunity to see what Pichelli's art is going to be like on the series.  Don't let me down, ladies!

Spider-Man the Short Halloween

This is a one-shot comedy effort from writers Bill Hader and Seth Meyers (both of Saturday Night Live), with art by Kevin Maguire.  Probably enjoyable; I'll have to read it and see what I think.

The Stand American Nightmares #3

I know I've disparaged this book, but I did read the last issue or two, just for kicks, and they weren't bad.  Mike Perkins' art is pretty nice, and while it's pretty narration-heavy, it works well enough.  I guess that might be a sort of a recommendation?

Ultimate Wolverine vs Hulk #6

And it finally ends, long after anybody stopped caring.  I did read this, and the rest of the series, and while it's not bad, there's really nothing much to it other than the title characters fighting a bunch.  I guess there's the creation of Ultimate She-Hulk, if you care about that, but overall, I give it a yawn.  If you dig this sort of thing, you'll probably disagree, but whatever.

Unknown Soldier #8

I finally read an issue of this series, when I picked up a reprint of the first issue on Free Comic Book Day, and I thought it was very good.  Now I just need to read the rest of the issues...

Bayou Vol 1 TP

DC's Zuda online site gets its first print collection, of Jeremy Love's supernatural swamp story.  It was one of the first comics on the site, and I remember reading the initial chapter and thinking it was pretty good, so it seems like something worth getting.  Of course, as with most webcomic collections, you can also read it for free online...

Billboards HC

IDW has this graphic novel by Clifford Meth and Dave Gutierrez, about a future when people get ads tattooed on their bodies, enabling corporations to track them and control what they do.  It's satire! Hey, it might be good, even if I haven't loved everything I've read by Meth.  CBR has a mostly-text preview, if you want to take a look.

Comic Books 101 History & Method & Madness SC

This appears to be a book version of Scott Tipton's columns about comics, with the help of Chris Ryall.  They both write at the Comics 101 site, so good for them, getting their writing in print.

DC Library Roots of the Swamp Thing HC

I expect this will be entry number forty-two in Mike Sterling's collection of these stories; I hope there's more of an audience for books like this than him alone.  It's a fancy, forty-dollar book collecting at least a good portion of that initial run, written by Len Wein with art by Berni Wrightson and Nestor Redondo.  I've read a good deal of these stories, and they're pretty good reading.  Check it out, if you can afford it.

Essential X-Men Vol 9 TP

You can buy this if you want to follow along with Jason Powell's reviews of Chris Claremont's X-Men stories.  I have no idea what was going on in the series at that point, but it might be interesting just to see.  Despite the title, it's probably not essential though.

Galveston TP

It's the collection of that pirate series from Boom! Studios, about Jean Lefitte teaming up with Jim Bowie.  I meant to read this, but never got around to it.  I should try sometime, since it sounds like fun.

Garth Ennis Battlefields TP vol 2 Dear Billy

More Garth Ennis war stories, this being an example of the collection of these miniseries that's more expensive than the monthly issues.  I ended up obtaining these issues, so I should get around to reading them soon.  Man, I love Ennis' war comics.  So good.

Incognegro SC

Here's the paperback version of the Vertigo graphic novel that came out a year or two ago.  I never read it, but I was interested, so maybe this will be my chance to get to it.  For those who don't know, it's about an early-20th-century African-American reporter pretending to be white in the racist South while investigating a murder case involving his brother.  Interesting stuff.  Mat Johnson wrote, Warren Pleece drew.

Jans Atomic Heart

I read Don MacPherson's review of this book a while back, and it sounded quite good.  I'll have to try to procure a copy.  The premise involves a future where people can get mechanical body parts (or replacement bodies), and a recipient of this technology fearing that he's being used as part of a terrorist plot.  Cool.  Here's an interview with creator Simon Roy that includes an extensive preview.

John Stanley Library Vol 1 Melvin Monster HC

Everybody seems excited about this release from Drawn and Quarterly, and I must say I did like the sample in their FCBD book (I didn't think the Nancy comic was as good).  For twenty bucks, you get a big chunk of funny old kids' comics.  Enjoy.

My Inner Bimbo TP

This miniseries took its sweet time coming out, but now it's all collected and ready to read in one shot.  Sam Keith and Joshua Hagler tell a bizarre story about a guy's feminine side comes to life and turns his life upside down.  Yeah, I wouldn't mind reading it.  Here's an interview with Keith that contains a big, long preview.

Neil Gaiman & Dave McKeans Crazy Hair HC

Is this only now coming out, or has it been out for a while?  It's a children's book that's sure to be goofy and enjoyable.  I was at a Neil Gaiman reading something like three years ago, and he read the text of this book, but apparently it's taken Dave McKean a while to finish it.  I expect Caleb Mozzocco will write about it at some point, since he likes to cover the kid books.

Power Up GN

New Doug TenNapel!  This one is about a guy who gets special powers from a video game.  Fun.  I do like TenNapel's cartooning, so I bet it will be a good read.

Special Forces TP Vol 1

And here's another collection of a series that I liked, by Kyle Baker.  I've been meaning to write something about the final issue, and I may still get around to it.  Great stuff, with some smart, angry satire about the war in Iraq, peppered with over-the-top action and sexiness.  Highly recommended.

This Is A Souvenir Songs Of Spearmint & Shirley Lee GN

I guess this is another entry in the "anthology comics about musicians" genre.  It features contributors like Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, Jamie S. Rich, and Chynna Clugston, but I have never heard of the band, so I doubt I would get much out of it.  We'll see, I guess.  Here's another one of those interviews (with editor Eric Stephenson) that has a couple preview pages.

T-Minus Race To The Moon GN

From writer Jim Ottaviani (who happens to be the subject of this week's Comics Reporter interview), it's another science-y comic about, well, read the title.  Art is by Zander and Kevin Cannon.  Might be good.


I'm way behind on this series; who knows if or when I'll ever get caught up.  I do have volumes four and five, I think, but I still need to read them.  It's pretty good, if you don't mind lots of goriness and nastiness.  We'll see how it goes.

Mushishi Vol 7 GN

Another series I might try to read more of someday.  I wasn't all that into the first volume, but it's supposed to get better as it goes on, so I'm sure I'll try it again at some point.

Part-Time Pets GN

Finally, here's an odd-sounding title from Aurora, about people owning genetically-engineered human-animal hybrids.  I think it's yaoi, so it will probably eventually involve a dude sleeping with a guy with cat ears.  Weird.

Okay, I think that's enough.  More content soon, I hope.