Jun 012013
 

Kick-Ass 3 #1

1. The epic real-world superhero trilogy starts its bloody descent into finality!

2. After Kick-Ass 2 (which is being adapted into the Kick-Ass 2 film sequel in August), Hit-Girl has been arrested and hero vigilante’s are on the run from the law.  It’s up to Kick-Ass and his assembled team of street level heroes to storm the police station and break Mindy out!

3. Original series creators Mark Millar and John Romita, Jr. (Avengers vs. X-Men) are back to put the final nail in this series, promising never to make any more Kick-Ass stories again!

4. To commemorate the debauched violence present in this first issue, issue #1 comes with six different, interlocking covers by the likes of Adam Hughes, Pasqual Ferry, Marc Silvestri, Cully Hamner, Adam Kubert, and John Romita, Jr.

Astro City #1

1. After years of delay and false-starts, Astro City is back!  And this time DC‘s adult Vertigo imprint is the publisher!

2. The entire team from the original, award-winning, legendary series is all back!  That’s Kurt Busiek, Brent Anderson, and Alex Ross on covers!

3. Astro City is a landmark series in introducing personal, human, naturalistic stories into comic books.  Without it, you can forget about Hawkeye by Matt Fraction, Animal Man by Jeff Lemire, and Invincible by Robert Kirkman.

4. Tired of the same-old-same-old superhero book from the big two?  Enter into an entirely fresh world of original heroes in this ongoing series!

Doctor Atlantis volume 2

1. Few first comic ventures by young artists and writers show true promise.  Ian Alley-Seals and Carl Mefferd, the writer and artist of this series, do!

2. A pulpy adventure offspring of Treasure Island and Doc Savage, teams up a mad pirate doctor, Julius Fowler, and his native assistant, Chosot, against cannibals, the elements, and prehistoric sea creatures!

3. Alley-Seals and Mefferd work together like two veterans, balancing dialog and visuals for a minimalist tale that gets quite when it needs too.  The two also understand how to construct mysteries out of character, as the first volume kept its readers guessing at the sanity of its two leads.

4. Missed volume one?  Don’t worry, volume two will drop you into the story with all you need to know!

Green Lantern #21

1. Geoff Johns just ended his nearly decade-long run on Green Lanter, which means many people will react by dropping this series.  That would be the wrong choice!

2. Robert Vendetti, the new series writer, may not have the name that Johns does, but he’s proven himself a skilled, journeyman writer by dragging Demon Knights out of the dregs and creating the award-winning graphic novel, The Surrogates.

3. After ten years of continuous story, Green Lantern is at a fresh starting point, making it easier than ever for new readers to break into the rich cosmic corner of the DC Universe.

4. Expect the series to return to its space cop roots, meaning simpler story arcs, broader action, and a stricter focus on Hal Jordan!

Nov 172012
 

Why does Otto Octavius want to see Peter Parker?

Actually, how does he even know to ask for Peter Parker?

This Wednesday’s Amazing Spider-Man #698 answers both of those questions as well as creating a whole bunch more.  Dan Slott, who’s been writing the Web-Slinger for around the last eight years, has been claiming for the last couple of months that this issue of ASM is going to change EVERYTHING.  Now, usually, that’s a whole lot of baloney, but there’s some strong indication in this case that he’s telling the truth.  For one, Doctor Octopus has been in a bad way, even near-death, over the last couple of storylines, which means he might be on the chopping block.  Certainly a character who’s been around as long as Doc Ock biting it would be a big event in the Spider-Man universe.  Or maybe Peter bites it?  Or maybe both?  Who knows?  All I can say is that every should pick up a copy of this issue, because what comes after is going to be unlike any Spider-Man story that’s come before.

Marvel NOW! rolls on this week with Captain America #1 and Indestructible Hulk #1, as well.

Rick Remender, writer of Uncanny X-Force, Venom, and Uncanny Avengers, is going to be taking Captain America to places he’s never been too before.  Utilizing the immense range of artistic talent that lies within John Romita, Jr.’s hands, Remender sends Captain America and a young girl far across the known universe to Dimension Z.  It’ll be a fight for survival, as Cap has to fend off disgruntled denizens, dangerous terrain, and unusual weather, he proves exactly why he’s a living legend and the best soldier in the, apparently, entire universe.

The Hulk may not appear to be the most complex or emotive character around, but if anyone can find the humanity within the monster, it’s Mark Waid.  Waid has been around the block a time or two, having written some of the best stories in comic book (Kingdom Come, The Flash, and “Tower of Babel“), plus he’s currently writing one of the best Marvel series being published, Daredevil.  Dropping The Hulk into the middle of Marvel‘s top espionage agency, S.H.I.E.LD., and not to destroy them but work for them.  Such an unusual situation is sure to bring about some of the most unique Hulk stories to be written.  Just imagine the conversations around the water cooler at the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier the day after the Hulk “accidentally” smashes an agent.  

You remember that Arnold Schwarzenegger movie where there were two of him ’cause somebody decided it would be a good idea to have to inaudible main characters in a single film?  No, I don’t either.  But I can promise you that Image Comic‘s Clone ongoing series will be nothing like it.  Produced by Robert Kirkman’s Skybound imprint, Clone lives up to its name as a horde of identical versions of Dr. Luke Taylor begin to descend upon his life, attempting to murder his wife and child.  As you might imagine, this doesn’t go well.  Juan Jose Ryp (Wolverine: Best There Is) brings every bit of dirty, blood, sweat, and grit to life with his hyper-detailed art style, so not only will this book be unlike any Arnold Schwarzenegger movie you’ve ever seen, it’ll look a damn sight better, too.

Oct 202012
 

I just want to quote the Image Comics description for the first book we’ll talk about tonight as a way of helping you understand what it’s like.

“Sexica and her Werewolf boyfriend Nikoli travel across a sci-fi, fantasy Russia smoking singing cigarettes.  Meanwhile the organ hunter Nura is sent out with a severed head and instructions to find its body.”

Yup.  That’s Brandon Graham for you, folks.  If you’ve read Prophet (the craziest, most brilliant comic out there!) or King City (the only comic with a cat telescope), then you’re well aware of Graham’s ingenious perspective on, well, everything.  Graham’s comics build fully realized, utterly unique worlds for you to explore visually (as he does the art himself) and conceptually.  For those reasons, I can promise you Multiple Warheads: Alphabet to Infinity will be one of the most interesting books you’ll ever read.

Jason Starr, renowned crime novelist and comic author, takes a crack at Wolverine‘s past this Wednesday, but not in a way you’ve ever seen before.  Wolverine MAX is a five issue miniseries that takes Logan back to Japan for an origin story of violent proportions.  If you’ve never read any of Marvel’s MAX line of books, they’re a no holds barred, adult version of famous Marvel characters.  So, in short, Wolverine like you’ve never seen him before.  Expect blood.  Expect guts.  Expect cursing.  Expect SNIKT-ing!

And if we’re talking blood and guts, we might as well mention the new Punisher War Zone miniseries hitting shelves this Wednesday.  Picking up where Greg Rucka’s recent Punisher ongoing series (both volumes, of which, are available now) left off at, Frank is on the run from the law in a way he’s never been before after taking the fall for shooting a cop.  Even though he didn’t do the deed, Frank is taking the blame to protect the woman who did (if you want to know more, you got to pick up the TPBs).  But Frank’s going to need his own form of protection as The Avengers decide to assist the NYPD in capturing him.  It’s Punisher vs. The Avengers, written by Greg Rucka, taking place in real Marvel continuity!

Followers of The Walking Dead television show on AMC have just been introduced to Phillip Blake aka The Governor with the beginning of season three, but there’s so much more to find out.  In conjunction with the hit television series, Robert Kirkman (the creator of the show and comic) began a trilogy of Walking Dead novels last year with The Rise of the Governor, which detailed Blake’s life during the initial zombie outbreak.  Now, its sequel, The Road to Woodbury, picks up where the last book left off at, following Blake as he climbs to power in the walled-off city of Woodbury.  Find out the origins of one of the most terrifying villains in comic history by picking up The Road to Woodbury this Wednesday!

Sep 012012
 

Marvel and DC may be the big two, but, over this last year, they’ve lost some considerable ground to Image Comics. Largely that’s due to Image publishing The Walking Dead, but the publisher has also been gaining ground in “among of books published”. What’s most shocking is that, with this rise in titles, the quality of each book has not faltered from any where below excellent. Two of the books that have contributed to these two factors are coming out in trade paperback form this Wednesday. Allow me to introduce you.

Thief of Thieves is the best heist movie you’ve never seen. It also happens not to be a movie, but a comic. And it’s created by Robert Kirkman (Walking Dead). And it’s written by Nick Spencer (Morning Glories). Not surprisingly it is a quick-witted, snappy, twisty read that uses pacing and panel arrangement to the full effect of the medium. The first collection comes out this Wednesday and contains the first six issues.

Manhattan Projects is what everyone wishes history was like. An alternate retelling of the experimentation that lead to the creation of the atomic bomb, Manhattan Projects (written by Jonathon Hickman (Fantastic Four)) stars the likes of Albert Einstein, Joseph Oppenheimer, FDR, Harry Truman, and a bunch of other famous people you thought were scientists but are actually psychopaths. Plus, the atomic bomb isn’t all these geniuses are playing with; inter-dimensional gateways, robot samurai, aliens, and alternate realities all make an appearance. Each issue will have you picking your jaw off the floor repeatedly as shock after shock keeps the story moving.

Alan Moore has never had kind words for those who’ve adapted his work to film, but there was a time when he wrote his own movie. During 1985, only a year before Watchmen hit the shelves, Moore wrote a sprawling modernization of Beauty and the Beast, dubbed Fashion Beast, with the intention of it being produced as a movie. This never happened. But now, Avatar Press has acquired Moore’s approval and oversight to adapted his script into a ten issue comic series. So, if you want to read a fairy tale as only Alan Moore can tell it, you need to stop by Wednesday and grab yourself a copy of Fashion Beast.

Let’s get one thing clear: He does not talk to fish!

The “he” in that sentence is, of course, Aquaman. There are few other characters in the DC universe (or Marvel, for that matter) who are ridiculed and satirized as much as Aquaman. Well, Geoff Johns is here to make anyone who’s ever made a “Hello, little fish” joke eat crow. This first collection of the New 52 Aquaman series brims with intelligent retooling of the character’s backstory, now focusing on character moments instead of broad strokes, as Aquaman and his wife Mera attempt to control an invasion of undersea creatures known as The Trench. These creatures are not simple fishies, they’re more like walking piranhas. If Johns is good at anything, he’s good at giving readers reasons to love his protagonists and fear his villains, traits that he brings to play in this exceptional first volume of everyone’s favorite punching bag, Aquaman.

Oct 152011
 

Are your windows boarded?  Do you have ammunition by the door?  Does your TV get cable?

Hopefully, the answer to all of these questions is “yes” as tomorrow heralds the return of The Walking Dead television series on AMC.  If you don’t have cable, though, and are going to be deprived of zombie-faction for the time it takes for the season two DVDs to come out, you might want to bide your time with the first in a trilogy of Walking Dead novels.  Rather concisely summing up the arch of the three book series, the first one is called Walking Dead: Rise of the Governor.  If you’ve read far enough into the comic series, you’ll know that The Governor is a bad, bad, bad dude.  As stated, this series will follow his ascent to power as he back stabs, murders, and cheats his way to the top of the post-zombpocalypse heap.  Written by the creator of Walking Dead, himself, Robert Kirkman, this series is sure to live up to the shocking quality of the comic and show.   

Usually, as I’m transferring from one zombie related book to another I’d attempt to create some sassy, stupid transition, but considering this next book I feel I only have to say two words to get people’s attention:  Claudio Sanchez.  Yes, a mention of the front man of famous cult band, Coheed and Cambria, has a way of sending rabid fan boys and girls rushing in every direction, but for those who you who are scratching your head, I’ll elaborate.  Set in post-zombie infestation New York, Key of Z, follows a man who has lost his entire family but found a mystical object that gives him an upper hand in the deadly city.  Not only will he have to contend with the undead denizens of the city, but also a violent battle for control between three rival safehouses operating out of Yankee Stadium, Citi Field, and Madison Square Garden.  Considering Sanchez’s surreal outlook on…well, everything, this should be a zombie book like no other.

There are comic books that we attempt to warn people are not for the faint of constitution.  A lot of the times we’re just overselling it so that people don’t wander into something that they’re going to regret purchasing.  Understand that in no way am I overselling the absolutely insane content found in Alan Moore‘s Neonomicon.  This.  Book.  Is.  Intense.  Dark, spooky, violent, filthy, and, as is commonly the case with Alan Moore, brilliant.  Building off of his previous series, The Courtyard, and connecting a number of H. P. Lovecraft‘s famous ideas, Moore tells the disturbing story of two FBI agents who investigate the wrong Cthulhuian cult and pay for it dearly.  Both the softcover and hardcover editions are dropping this weak for any out there brave enough to delve in.  The Great One is coming.

We’ve had zombies, Cthulhu monsters, and now vampires tonight.  You’d think we’re getting close to Halloween or something.  30 Days of Night, the popular series from Steve Niles about vampires who show up in an isolated Alaskan town over a thirty day eclipse is finally getting a much overdue ongoing series.  Yes, issue one drops this Wednesday, still written by Niles, but this time drawn by famous artist of such gritty titles as The Maxx and Arkham Asylum: Madness, Sam Keith.  If you take a look at the cover to the right, I think you’ll see why Keith is the perfect artist for the title as he can capture that haunting, moody creepiness a book like this requires.  But what about the plot?  Moving the story from Alaska to L.A., Niles will follow the mystery of a growing vampire uprising and a foreboding letter sent to a little girl.  Creep up your October and jump on board.