Monday, July 13, 2009

This week, I'm not as excited to get to the comics store

Link: In preparation for the upcoming Beasts of Burden miniseries, Dark Horse has posted the original 2003 Evan Dorkin/Jill Thompson story featuring the characters, "Stray", on their website. It's a good one; I think it even won an Eisner. Check it out if you haven't read it, then get extra excited for the new comic.

If I was going to SDCC, I would probably want to pick this up. It looks nice.

This New York Times collection of Al Jaffee's fold-ins for MAD magazine is pretty cool.


New comics this week (Wednesday, 7/15/09):

Agents of Atlas #8

Jeff Parker keeps things rolling on the awesome series; I hope people are reading it, so it doesn't get cancelled. This issue sees the team fight some freaky monsters and meet the Hulk. Art is by Carlo Pagulayan, and the coloring seems somewhat improved, from what I can tell. More along the lines of what's been on the Gabriel Hardman issues. I like this book; I should have a review up at Comics Bulletin tomorrow.

All Select Comics #1 70th Anniversary Special

More old-school superheroics, with this issue being about the sexy Blonde Phantom, by Marc Guggenheim and Javier Pulido. Also: Michael Kupperman with a story about Marvex the Super Robot! I think that one is also going to be in the Strange Tales MAX series, so maybe this is a sort of preview. Fun?

Creepy Comics #1

Dark Horse is reviving the horror anthology that used to run way back when, providing a monthly dose of black and white creepiness. This issue sees the likes of Berni Wrightson, Jason Shawn Alexander, Neil Kleid, Angelo Torres, and others, with covers by Eric Powell. Here's a short preview.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? #1

Boom! Studios has this adaptations of Philip K. Dick's novel (you know, the one that Blade Runner was based on), by Tony Parker (who is only credited with art, and Dick credited with writing, although somebody must have done the adaptation). It looks interesting; maybe it'll turn out good. Blade Runner has never been among my favorite films, and I think I read the novel in high school, although I don't remember a whole lot from it. I would say that other stuff by Dick is probably better, but whatever.

DMZ #43

Brian Wood, Ryan Kelly. War's still going.

Fables #86

The war's over here, but there's more fairy tales to be told. Let's get the next volume out, and then follow up with the crossover volume toot sweet, okay?

Fables #1 Peter & Max Preview

And here's an odd little sampler, with an excerpt from Bill Willingham's upcoming prose Fables novel and a reprint of the first issue of the series (and maybe someting from 1001 Nights of Snowfall? I thought I saw that somewhere). I guess it's something to get people on board (although I maintain that the second volume of the series is better than the first), but a free giveaway would probably be better than charging a dollar for it.

From the Ashes #2

Bob Fingerman continues to wander the post-apocalypse with his wife and complain about Blackberries, or something. Here's a funny(?) story: I said hi to Fingerman at MoCCA when he was signing at the Fantagraphics table, telling him that I liked his work. His response was to gesture at the stack of Connective Tissue volumes sitting in front of him and say "Why don't you buy the book then?" Ah, what a genial fellow! That's okay, artists are allowed to be abrasive.

Incognito #5

Hey, this is a good series, isn't it? I sure liked that last issue.

Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers #3

That goofy mutt and his pals are still questing for Infinity Gems, and this issue takes them under the sea, to Namor's realm, then they get to meet little Bo Obama, to everyone's general eye-rolling distaste. I guess this series is enjoyable enough, but it's so lightweight and inconsequential that it will probably be instantly forgotten the day after the final issue comes out.

Nexus Space Opera Acts 3 & 4

So apparently Steve Rude is having financial problems, so the final two issues of the current Nexus miniseries are coming out together. Not that I was reading them or anything. But you get two comics in one for only five bucks; enjoy! I really should catch up on this series...

Poe #1

Another Boom! book; this one imagines Edgar Allen Poe as a supernatural detective, "for fans of books like Hellboy". I doubt he's going to punch and monsters or say "Aw, crap" though.

Rasl #5

Jeff Smith! I've been loving this series, so I'm excited to read more, as always. What was going on again? I think we were getting a backstory infodump that had to do with the Tunguska Event and the Philadelphia Experiment, right?

Robot 13 #1

I glanced at this book at MoCCA, but it didn't really seem that enticing; the art style is a slavish Mike Mignola imitation; it's something about a skull-headed robot fighting monsters, but it seems like such a Hellboy wannabe that I can't summon much interest. You can see some preview pages at the official site here if you want to judge for yourself.

Robotika For A Few Rubles More #1 & #2 Double-Sized

This series seemed like one I would be interested, but I never really got the chance to check it out, and it seemed like it was going to disappear when Archaia was having problems. Now that the company seems to have recovered, the current series is getting a second chance, with a re-release of the first two issues. Maybe this is my chance to catch up.

Rotten #2

I wasn't really aware of (or had forgotten about) this comic, which is a sort of western/zombie mashup from Bluewater, but it seems interesting enough. Here's the second issue; maybe it won't be bad. Hope springs eternal.

Unknown #3

I've been meaning to read this supernatural mystery series from Boom!, but I haven't gotten to it yet. Greg McElhatton seems to think the first two issues were pretty good.

Wednesday Comics #2

I didn't comment about this after reading it last week, because I figured it wouldn't be all that interesting to join the comics-internet-wide chorus saying that it's pretty good, but I did like it. My favorites: Paul Pope's Adam Strange (surprise, surprise, right?), Gaiman and Allred's Metamorpho, Gibbons and Sook's Kamandi, and, I dunno, maybe Hawkman and Deadman? I bet this issue will be good too.

Zeke Deadwood Zombie Lawman #1 Legally Dead

Wait, another western/zombie comic? This one is by Thomas Boatwright and Ryan Rubio (creators of Cemetary Blues), and maybe it's a bit funnier? You can supposedly read a 10-page preview here, but it's not working for me right now.

Batman Whatever Happened To the Caped Crusader HC

Last week was Alan Moore's farewell to Superman, now we get Neil Gaiman's Batman version. I didn't read this story, but it sounded kind of dumb, and even though people seemed to think Andy Kubert's art was good, it didn't seem much better than his usual blandness whenever I looked at it. But if you dug it, now you can have this overpriced ($25) hardcover that also includes a couple other Gaiman Batman stories. Yay!

Captain Britain Moore Davis Omnibus HC

Whoa, I didn't know about this book. I think it contains the entirety of Alan Moore and Alan Davis' run on the series, along with some other stuff, like Chris Claremont's appropriation of some of the characters for the X-Men. I've heard that this is good stuff, so I would love to read it, but I definitely won't be able to afford the $100 for this volume. To the library!

Dan Dare Omnibus TP Dynamite Edition

I thought Dynamite had already released a collection of Garth Ennis and Gary Erskine's Virgin Comics miniseries, but maybe I was wrong. Or maybe they've got a new version out. Whatever the case, it's pretty good, a nice war comics-style tale of British derring-do that happens to take place in space. Good times.

Dreamer Volume 1 Consequence of Nathan Hale TPB

IDW is publishing this collection of Lora Innes webcomic about a girl who imagines herself as a historical character participating in the American Revolution. It looks nice from what I've seen; as with all web-to-print books, I'll point out that you can save dough by reading it for free online.

Enders Game Battle School HC
Enders Shadow Battle School HC

Did anybody read these Orson Scott Card adaptations? I was curious about them, since I do really love the novel Ender's Game, but I'm hesitant to approach any of Card's work these days due to his ugly, outspoken political views. The adaptations were written by Christopher Yost, with art by Pascual Ferry on the first one and Sebastian Fiumara on the second. Not that I plan on buying them, but somebody let me know if they're worth a look-see.

Hum GN

Here's a book with an interesting-sounding sci-fi premise involving a space colony in which a bunch of the people have been stricken blind, and the ones retaining their sight have forced everyone else into slavery, leading to eventual revolution and whatnot. Is that interesting? Maybe it's not interesting, and I'm just a sucker for sci-fi. It could be okay though. You can see some more information on the book's Myspace page if you want (I hate Myspace pages for comics; they're all so fucking hard to navigate and seem to never have much in the way of useful information).

IDW The First Decade HC Slipcased

I don't know if there are any fans of IDW as a publisher, but if so, here's the book for you. $75 gets you a slipcased double-hardcover, with one volume containing interviews and whatnot with a bunch of the people involved with the company, including creative talent like Ben Templesmith, Steve Niles, Ashley Wood, Chris Ryall, and a bunch of others. The second volume reprints the covers from every issue the company has ever published. And there's also an exclusive comic that includes Popbot and Wormwood stories, among others. That's something, I guess, but who knows if anybody besides investors will want to buy it.

Light Brigade New Printing TPB

I was just reading about this 2004 Peter Tomasi/Peter Snejbjerg supernatural WWII series the other day, and now DC is putting out a new edition. It's too expensive though, costing $20 for what was originally a four-issue miniseries. Quit screwing us, DC!

Lost Girls HC Single Volume Edition

I've never read Alan Moore's pornographic magnum opus, and to tell the truth, I'm not really all that interested in doing so, unless somebody wants to send me a free copy. But I'm more likely to get this one than the huge set of hardcovers that Top Shelf had previously released. Maybe if I win the lottery.

Preacher Book 1 HC

DC is giving Garth Ennis' probable most famous series the deluxe treatment, rereleasing it in fancy, expensive hardcovers. This one collects what were originally in the first two volumes. It's a damned good series (if occasionally a bit juvenile in its attempt to be sexually frank and shocking), so I recommend checking it out if you're interested.

Smuggling Spirits HC

I reviewed the first volume of this series way back in September 2007, and I thought it was quite interesting, full of spooky mood and a neat Frank Miller influence. This volume collects the whole story; you can read more about it in this CBR interview that includes some preview images.

Spider Judgement Knight TP

Moonstone seems to be crafting an identity of comics featuring old-school pulp heroes, and here's one reviving the Spider, a masked detective that would just go around shooting bad guys, from what I understand. It's by Norvel W. Page, Howard Hopkins, and Gary Carbon; you can read a little bit about it at Moonstone's site.

Spider-Man Torment HC

Oh lord, Marvel just keeps wanting to dredge up the lame stuff in their catalogue, don't they? This was the first storyline on Todd McFarlane's non-adjectived Spider-Man series, and it's pretty obvious that it was written by an artist, with lots of huge splash images and not much in the way of actual story. Does anybody really need to spend $20 on a hardcover collection? Hell, the damn thing sold so many copies that you're sure to be able to find the back issues in any shop's bins for only a couple bucks each, if that. Please don't waste your money on this book.

Will Eisners Family Matter TP WW Norton ED
Will Eisners Minor Miracles TP WW Norton ED

Two more of Eisner's books in the format that Norton is releasing them in. I haven't read these, but I'm sure I'll get to them someday; I do love me some Eisner. I think they were some of his later books, but I could be wrong about that. I bet they're good though, and I doubt that supposition is incorrect.

World War Robot Volume 2 TPB

It's the second volume of Ashley Wood's illustrated stories about soldiers fighting bucket-shaped robots and whatnot, with ties to the toy line he produced. I read the first volume, and it was all right, mostly a bunch of cool images with a little bit of connective tissue holding it together. Of
course, I really like Wood's art, so if he doesn't do anything for you, stay far away.

That appears to be everything that I found notable. I don't know if I'll make it to the shop this week, but probably not, since I've got more than more than enough to read as it is. I'll do what I can to catch up; stay tuned.


  1. Actually, the Light Brigade trade is 200 pgs long, which is about 50 odd pages more than your average 6 issue collection. It's also all story with the only extras being the four covers.

  2. Huh, how about that. Were the issues originally double-sized? I still think $20 is a bit expensive, but that does make it seem like a bit better deal.

  3. I have the trade so I don't know if they originally double-sized but I would guess so. The trade itself is basically all story though, no extras.

  4. Oh wow! Definitely, definitely read the Alan Moore Captain Britain stuff! The Moore stuff is wonderful, of course!, but the Alan Davis stuff is also a *lot* of fun and just very solid comics.

    Lost Girls, buddy, who's an even bigger Moore fan than me, bought a copy of the hardcover collection. He said he got too creeped out to read it and gave it to me. I tried reading it and also got too creeped out, so I handed it off to someone else. My theory is eventually that copy will have passed through every set of hands in the world, so keep your eyes open, you may see it! lol

    Wednesday Comics - yours is a voice I trust. Is it worth the $4? I made a rule for myself about 6 months ago - no comic over $3 unless it's by Jeff Smith - but if you think Wednesday Comics is worth it, I'll try an issue.

  5. I think Wednesday Comics is worth the dough, because it's a gorgeous product. It's all about the art though, at least so far. I love the huge size and the experience of reading it, and while not all the stories are great, the good ones are very good, so far. I think you said on Tucker's blog that you're not as into the art, so if that's the case, you might not like it as much, but me, I love Paul Pope, Mike Allred, Ryan Sook, Eduardo Risso, and Kyle Baker, and a bunch of the others are really good too. The first installment seemed to be a bunch of intros, so part two is probably where things will really get cooking. So yeah, I think it's worth it, but it's almost designed just for me. Take that as you will.

  6. "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" is actually presenting the entire novel, unedited, so the only 'adapting' is the art and pacing of captions containing the text. An interesting book -- particularly since it means that, between word balloons, you sometimes get 'he said' captions. The first issue covers the first two chapters of the novel plus the first few pages of the third.

  7. Me, I'd say Do Anrdoids... was one of Dick's better novels. Much better than the film, at any rate.

  8. Hey Matt,

    My thing with the Wed Comic artists is I only *really* like two of them, Allred and Baker. (As you know, I *love* Allred's work!) I have nothing against anyone else, so if you say you felt the work was worth the $4, then I'll give it a shot!

  9. You know, it's a shame that I haven't read more of Dick's work. I think my favorite of what I have gotten to is A Scanner Darkly, but there's probably others that I would like even better. He really hits the sweet spot of fascinating ideas, poignant drama, and really funny shit for me. Others that I need to get to: The Man in the High Castle, Ubik, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, Flow My Tears The Policeman Said, and lots of others, I'm sure. Yup, the list of books I want to read will never end, I'm sure.

  10. Would you want that list to ever end? It would be weird to sit back and realise that you've read every book you've ever wanted to read and there's nothing new left. Is there a word for when something is both disturbing and comforting?

  11. Yeah, that's the "I'm ready to die" moment, when you've reached the end of that list. I don't think that'll ever happen though; there's too much information in the world to feel like I've ever consumed enough of it.