Saturday, September 21, 2013

What Looks Cool For October

Okay as before I’m ignoring anything from DC proper (meaning I will add Vertigo if appropriate) and Marvel proper, which allows Marvel Knights and if Icon ever has another book to be included.  

Very few post lately as I have been super busy with going to Balto-Con and then a stay-cation when my brother and his wife visited (lots of fun) that I have over 80 books yet to be read. I have stayed current on some stuff. I tried to hit what I wrote up on the September version of this post.

First off some commentary on the current state of what the Big Two are doing. The DC Villains month is a disaster. Oh sure I have managed to sell almost all of them on Ebay and have made a buck or two, but man did these books reek of fill in material. Not origins, not setting up anything per say, just place markers featuring the villains. Plus the bloom will be off the speculator rose on the prices of those books quick. The Infinity saga by Hickman is ambitious and overdone. He has too many plates spinning with way too many characters, so far I would call this an expensive fail. I could be eating my words when it is done but right now it is too much. The Battle of the Atom is fun and exciting. I love Bendis on the X-Men and have three different groups of X-Men from three times is an amazing amount of fun. Now it is onto the main attraction.

Ok from September:

I missed mentioning God is Dead #1 from Avatar and Hickman, a great opening issue as the gods of old have returned to Earth and it is not a good time for Mankind.

Hit #1 from Boom was a great opening as a sanctioned Hit squad during LA in the 50’s is already in a lot of trouble.

Brain Boy #1 from Dark Horse is a must read. Van Lente gave us a highly enjoyable picture of a government super hero who is an arrogant prick, but just a damn good book.

Buzzkill #1 was also a lot of fun as the concept is crazy. Our hero needs to be high to have powers and he is trying to get straight and going to AA. All is not what it seems for our “hero?”. 

Codename Action #1 was another good book. Think James Bond from 1960 teaming up with James Bond from 2013 and a awesome plot to start a World War and you have the start of a good mini-series (I believe).

Kings Watch #1 which is a team up of The Phantom, Flash Gordon and Mandrake the Magician should be a disaster, but Jeff Parker made this opening chapter a lot of fun. All introduction type stuff and the story has yet to kick in, but I liked it.

Reality Check #1 was another winner. The concept is a comic book writer/artist is struggling to have a hit and his character comes to life. A lot more to it then that, but it works and it worth checking out.

Sadly I have not read any other of the new number ones as of this writing.

Ok for October the fun starts with Dark Horse, so let’s pull up those solicitations.

First up is Bloodhound Crowbar Medicine #1 (of 5) by Dan Jolly as writer and Leonard Kirk as artist.  This book has a strange pedigree as it was a DC book that Jolley managed to retain the rights too. Dark Horse republished it with a few succinct edits to eliminate any reference to the DCU. This is a follow up to that part of the story I believe. Jolley’s projects always show hard work and love for what he is doing and Kirk can have a superior art style. The copy for it saysTravis Clevenger may not have superpowers, but he can put a beatdown on anyone who does! Consulting with the FBI in exchange for release from prison, Clev is getting his life together when a rogue superhuman’s destructive rampage and a scientist’s response shock the nation, leading to Clev’s biggest case yet!”

Next up is Shaolin Cowboy #1 by Geof Darrow. One day someone needs to publish all of the Shaolin Cowboy stuff as a high end hard cover. I have missed this book and glad to see it finally getting back onto the stands. Just a crazy mash up of whatever Geof wants to do with the central character being a Shaolin Cowboy. The marketing hype goes like this “The Shaolin Cowboy returns, but nowhere in sight is there a dead Robin, any infinity gauntlets, or a single conquering Ultron—just flat-out action, intrigue, and plenty of roadkill. Geof Darrow’s slow-talkin’, kung-fu-gripping hero proves once again, in this brand-new new series, that the only thing that can stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a chainsaw!”

Alright this one for DH is something I’m just going to take a chance on, S.H.O.O.T. First #1 (of 4) by Justin Aclin writer and Nicholas Daniel Selma on art. The first two I’m buying based on having read both series before, so I know what I’m getting for the most part. This is one where artist and writer are unknown but the premise and hype is good “The Secular Humanist Occult Obliteration Taskforce—defending humanity from angels, demons, and a bunch of other crap S.H.O.O.T. doesn’t believe in. Justin Aclin (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Twisted ToyFare Theatre) and Nicolás Daniel Selma (Tomb Raider: The Beginning) take aim at the supernatural in an all-new big-action, big-ideas sci-fi adventure! • Original, irreverent, and controversial!The sci-fi in the premise was the final selling point and Dark Horse produces quality material.

Not a bad start from Dark Horse, let’s check on IDW next. And after scanning the listing we get a zero. Damn, I love the quality of IDW work, but wish they had more new stuff coming out, maybe next month.

Let’s move onto Image, which is fast becoming the go to place for most creator owned material.

First up is a slam dunk for me, Velvet #1 by Ed (Fatale) Brubaker writer and Steve Epting as artist. The level of artist talent that is coming onto these projects now is amazing. A few years ago many of the bigger names were not coming onto creator owned projects. Not sure if part ownership is the incentive or if the writers have the wherewithal to pay the artist up front or what is going on, but the talent level is incredible. The premise is When the world's best secret agent is killed, Velvet Templeton, the Personal Assistant to the Director of the Agency, is drawn off her desk and back into the field for the first time in nearly 20 years... and is immediately caught in a web of mystery, murder and high-octane action. Sexy and provocative, with a dark twist on the spy genre, this EXTRA-LENGTH first issue by two of the industry's best-selling creators will knock you out!” Okay we are getting lot’s of spy type stuff, but well done is well done and the twist is a good one.

Next up is Pretty Deadly #1 by Kelly Sue DeConnick as writer and art by Emma Rios. Why does the big two struggle to get female creators when the industry has this level of talent? I have been growing to like Kelly Sue’s work more and more and Emma’s work at Boom was very good. But neither is a slam dunk for me to try a new book, the premise is what made my decision an easy one. It is  “an all-new ongoing series that marries the magical realism of Sandman with the western brutality of Preacher.  Death's daughter rides the wind on a horse made of smoke and her face bears the skull marks of her father. Her tale of retribution is as beautifully lush as it is unflinchingly savage.” Sounds like it could be promising.

Next is Rocket Girl #1 by one of my favorite artists Amy Reeder with the writer being Brandon Montclare. They did a Halloween one shot and the premise sounds great “A teenage cop from a high-tech future is sent back in time to 1986 New York City.  Dayoung Johansson is investigating the Quintum Mechanics megacorporation for crimes against time. As she pieces together the clues, she discovers the “future” she calls home – an alternate reality version of 2013 – shouldn’t exist at all!Blast off with the new ongoing series by BRANDON MONTCLARE (Halloween Eve) and Eisner Award nominee AMY REEDER (Batwoman, Madame Xanadu).” Now I backed the Kickstarter for this book and will be getting the first issue that way, but I’m all in for this book.
The last new series from Image I want to try out is Three #1 by writer Kieron Gillen and art by Ryan Kelly. The premise is “When a member of the Spartan ruling class visits an isolated homestead of Helot workers, a brutal massacre is only the beginning. KIERON GILLEN (PHONOGRAM, Über, Iron Man), RYAN KELLY (Saucer County, Local) and JORDIE BELLAIRE (THE MANHATTAN PROJECTS, NOWHERE MEN) unite to tell the heroic story of three slaves and their desperate attempt to escape 300 of the finest warriors who've ever lived.” It feels like Kieron is perhaps wanting to show another side of the Spartan life which was glorified by the 300. Not sure that I thought anyone had a great life back in those days. Sometimes it is nice to believe the legend and stop showing everyone having clay feet, but the other side of the coin is that perhaps it also shows that we can all be heroic even with our faults.
Now onto check and see if Boom can offer any new October titles I want to try.
Imagine Agents #1 by Brian Joines writer and art by Bachan. The title says no to me, the creators are who and who to me, but the solicitation copy says Ever try to wrangle an illiterate, 30-foot tall rock monster away from his 5-year-old best friend? Or calm down a 400 pound muscle-man rag-doll during her daily temper-tantrum? For Dave and Terry, it's all in a day's work. As agents for I.M.A.G.I.N.E., they are responsible for keeping your imaginary friends in-line...Little do they know that six-year-old Elliot and his best bear-friend, Furdlgurr, are about to be entangled in a plan to change everything!” It sounds like it could be a lot of fun and maybe a neat book to pass onto a younger reader. So this book gets a one issue try out. I’m not sure if this is a KaBoom book or not.

So a one and done for BOOM, next up is Avatar. Avatar is a zero, not surprising as they are a smaller publisher and are not going to have new projects every month. Let’s look at Valiant for October. Again we get a big fat zero. Valiant is being very cautious about adding books so no new titles is a good thing. Onto Dynamite to see if they have anything new in October.

This is a new series but iffy as it is a continuation of Dynamite exploiting The Shadow as much as possible. The Shadow Now #1 by writer David Liss and artist Colton Worley. I dropped the Spider by these two as the art was too computerized for my taste. Still I like Liss’ writing and the concept is a good one, so I will give it a go. The premise Having spent decades in the east to rejuvenate himself, the greatest pulp hero of them all, The Shadow, returns to New York in modern times. Lamont Cranston seeks to resume his old life, and his heroic alter-ego is ready to stand once more as an enemy to evil. But while he was gone, his foes have remained vigilant, and the most dangerous man The Shadow has ever faced prepares to rise once more. It's the shocking beginning to a new era for The Shadow!” Of course The Shadow has been moved into the present before but always nice to see a different take. Also the last time was back in the eighties I believe.
This is it from Dynamite, now let’s turn to Vertigo. An imprint I thought was dead, yet is struggling to regain some life. A quick remark, I know Sandman: Overture #1 by Gaiman and Williams is coming out, but I’m skipping this as it will be a deluxe hard cover in no time and I see no need to spend $30 for the mini-series which is going to be bi-monthly. With all that I read it is too difficult to follow a story that comes out every other month.

Fist up from Vertigo is Coffin Hill #1 by Catlin Kittredge as the writer and art by Inaki Miranda. Neither name is one I recognize. The premise is “COFFIN HILL stars Eve Coffin, a rebellious, teenage lowlife from a high-society family with a curse that goes back to the Salem Witch trials. Following a night of sex, drugs and witchcraft in the woods, Eve wakes up naked, covered in blood and unable to remember how she got there. One friend is missing, one is in a mental ward—and one knows that Eve is responsible. After a stint as a Boston cop that ends in a bullet wound and unintended celebrity, Eve returns to Coffin Hill, only to discover the darkness that she unleashed ten years ago in the woods was never contained. It continues to seep through the town, cursing the soul of this sleepy Massachusetts hollow, spilling secrets and enacting its revenge.
Set against the haunted backdrop of New England, COFFIN HILL explores what people will do for power and retribution. Noted novelist Caitlin Kittredge, author of the Black London series, brings a smart, mesmerizing style to comics. Artist Inaki Miranda (FABLES) brings his dynamic storytelling to COFFIN HILL, following an acclaimed run on FAIREST.”
Well I’m not excited as it sounds like the Sleep Hollow TV series and/or a little like Rachael Rising, but I will try it out.

Next up is Hintertkind #1 by Ian Edington on words and art by Francesco Trifogli. I read Ian before but nothing that I can recall and the artist is a total blank to me. The premise is “Men go and come, but Earth abides.”— Ecclesiastes 1:4
Decades after “The Blight” all but wiped out the human race, Mother Nature is taking back what’s hers, and she’s not alone…The Hinterkind have returned.
From the last, lost corners of the world they come, a myriad menagerie of myth and magic...but these aren’t childhood fairytale creatures. They are flesh, blood and passion, and they have a long-simmering hatred for those who drove them into the shadows: The human race! 
After her grandfather disappears, Prosper Monday must leave the security and seclusion of their Central Park village to venture into the wilds to find him, unaware of how much the world has changed. Or how hungry it has become…”
  Sounds like the mix of post apocalypse with fairy tale creatures and humans fighting it out.

Both books are benefiting from my love of the Vertigo imprint and I’m willing to see if Shelly Bond can right the Vertigo ship that was almost sunk by Didio.

So that leave Marvel Knights and or Icon imprint to see if they have anything worth trying out in October.

Low and behold Marvel Knights Spider-Man #1 (of 5) by a favorite writer of mine Matt Kindt with art by Marco Rudy. The hype is “From the haunted heights of a mysterious castle to the dizzying depths of the deep seas, the Amazing Spider-Man has to take on not one, not six, not twelve – but ninety-nine of the Marvel Universe’s deadliest villains to save the lives of countless innocents! A defining hour in the life of the webbed wonder in a race against time and a battle against evil.” This would be a pass for me but for Matt Kindt. Of course Rudy is a solid artist. This should be fun and I believe it is Peter Parker as Spider-Man.

That wraps up October, but a ton of great stuff to look forward to. 


  1. You know I checked both sites yesterday to see if you had anything new, knowing you couldn't keep silent for long. GLAD YOU'RE BACK WHEREVER YOU ARE! 1/3 of the way reorganizing my Marvel back issues...LOTS MORE TO DO...but it's fun and I just may have some insights on it someday.

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  3. For some reason my comment got doubled automatically.