Flippin’ through ‘Previews’ – March 2017

It’s Smarch, and that can only mean the Marvel is starting yet another giant event and soliciting it in Previews #342! So let’s check it out and try to stay positive!

Remember when Deathstroke was impossibly better than everyone? THOSE DAYS ARE BACK, BABY!

Travis had almost a week to start this post, partly because I was out of town and didn’t have access to a computer and partly because my comics shop didn’t even get Previews until this week, so I would have been hampered had I tried to start this post, yet … he didn’t. That begs the question: Is Travis just dead weight at this point? I shudder to contemplate it! Anyway, as you can see, I’m still blue, and Travis is black. Let’s get this thing started!

Oh, man, that’s so…accurate.  I know, I know, I muffed it.  Motivation and I are only passing acquaintances right now!  I do have some good news later in the post, though, at the start of the back of the book section!

Dark Horse:

There’s yet another Predator series, called Predator: Hunters on page 46. It sounds like a standard Predator story – except now the Predators are the prey! – but Fernando Ruiz Velasco’s art looks pretty keen, if you’re into pretty keen art.

Oh snap, they’re the prey!  I feel like they must have done that story before.

Peek-a-boo!

I’m so not into comics based on video games, except in very, very rare instances, and Dragon Age: Knight Errant (page 50) might be one of those. It’s written by Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir, who really ought to be bigger names in comics, as their books are always entertaining. So that might get me to pick up the trade. We shall see.

Again, Pong by Beardy McGrumpypants is a classic and I wish you’d acknowledge that.  I too like DeFilippis and Weir, but it’s not enough to get me to get this in any form.

I like Geof Darrow, so that Lead Poisoning: Pencil Art of GD book on page 55 is intriguing.  Maybe if enough people buy it, he can afford the other F in his first name!

And shockingly, even though it’s a book about previously-published work, it’s still going to be two months late!

You so bad!

The second trade of Dept. H is offered on page 57. I mention this only because I’m still not sure how I feel about Dept. H. I read it, and it’s intriguing, but it hasn’t grabbed me yet the way Mind Mgmt did. I’m not sure if it reads better in chunks rather than in monthly installments, which is what the trade provides! I trust Matt Kindt, though, and I do like it, it’s just that it hasn’t blown me away like so much of Kindt’s work has.

Ether gets a trade on page 58. This is also written by Kindt, although it’s not drawn by him. David Rubin’s art, however, is quite nice. I’ve only read the first issue because I’m waiting to read the rest once the final issue comes out, which of course it hasn’t. But it’s a clever enough idea – an interdimensional explorer trying to solve a murder – and the first issue was pretty darned good. But I’m not sure if I can really recommend this, given that I haven’t read past the first issue.

Your word on the first issue is enough for me, though, so I’m in for this trade.

The Black Sinister gets a trade on page 58. This was serialized in Dark Horse Presents, and it’s … kind of weird. Imagine Batman as a bad guy, and you get the gist, although it takes place in a bizarre, slightly steampunk world. It’s not bad, and Troy Nixey really needs to do more comics, and it’s 10 bucks for 72 pages, which isn’t that bad, so … yeah.

Ah, it’s from DHP.  Which means I don’t need it, but I do need to catch up on my DHP reading!

He’s fun at parties!

I haven’t read all of Doc Unknown, but what I have read is pretty good, so it’s neat that Dark Horse is doing The Complete Doc Unknown hardcover on page 60. Lots of stuff for 25 dollars, and everything I’ve read has been entertaining!

Good to hear a plaudit (that’s the word I want, right?), as I was intrigued and your praise tips me further towards getting this!

I was also intrigued to see on page 60 that they used a Rook cover with Vampirella on it for the Rook Archives v2, since they don’t have the license for her.  Do they have a deal with Dynamite so they can feature her some?

Huh, that’s weird. Maybe Dynamite only has the license for NEW Vampirella works, and reprints are exempt in some way?

Well, they’ve reprinted the old Vampirella stuff, so I don’t think that’s it.  DH and Dynamite have teamed up on things before, haven’t they?  Maybe they’re friendly like that!

Apparently Angel Catbird is just a trilogy, as the third and final book is offered on page 63.  I have to read Toni’s review still!  I may get it though, just because I like Johnnie Christmas’s art.

I don’t know if Andi Watson’s Glister has been collected before, but it is now, on page 64. I haven’t read it, but what of Watson’s work I have read is charming, so I imagine this is too!

I thought they might have, but it could have just been one of the specials that I saw.  This is a pretty good deal, though, 300 pages for 15 bucks.

Michael May and Jason Copland’s Kill All Monsters gets a giant omnibus on page 65. I own the shorter version, but I know Copland’s been drawing more of this for some time now, so I’m really keen to see it. The shorter version was quite good, and I wonder where May will go with the story!

I knew there was the shorter version, and I think early on in this DHP run there was a pretty good KAM story, so I may spring for this one too.  If this is complete, though, why am it volume 1?

That’s an excellent question, sir!

A companion Usagi Yojimbo Saga volume, Legends, is offered on page 66, and it’s got a lot of stuff I have, like Space Usagi and Senso.  I don’t have Yokai, though.  I’ll probably wait and see if they reoffer this whenever Saga v8 is out.  But this is, of course, great stuff.

I might have to get Gary Gianni’s Monstermen and Other Scary Stories on page 72. It sounds pretty groovy, and Gianni’s art is always nice.

Oh, it’s beautiful.  You must have seen the story he did from the original Batman Black and White mini.  So good!  I’m probably in on this!

I don’t think that’s going to be very effective!

There are a shit ton of relists on pages 77-79.  Someone doesn’t want to pay Diamond for warehouse space any more!

DC:

Hey, I don’t know if we missed it and he’s been on the book for a bit, but our pal Juan Ferryra is doing the art for Green Arrow 22 and 23 (page 95).  I wish he drew books I’m more interested in!

Well, first of all, spell his name correctly, dang it!, and second, yeah, he’s been on the book from the beginning – Otto Schmidt drew the first few issues, the Ferreyra picked it up. You should read the reviews of our handsomest contributor, son!

But I already read my own stuff!  Dammit, I mistyped, because I was definitely checking to make sure I spelled his name right!  But I’m leaving this exchange in so our readers know how horrible I am!

Nightwing 20 on page 103 is the last part of “Nightwing Must Die!”.  Since Nightwing 21 is solicited right under it with no indication that he does, in fact, die, I’m going to insert a “spoiler alert!” here.

Chuck Dixon and Graham Nolan are reuniting for a 12-issue Bane series (page 115). I have no interest in this, but I do hope that Dixon and Nolan got paid something for Bane’s appearance in The Dark Knight Rises. That would be fair … yeah, okay. I get it.

Hell, they may have gotten more than they would have from Marvel.  Hasn’t Len Wein made more for Lucius Fox in those movies than he has for Wolverine?  But this series doesn’t interest me, other than wondering if Nolan will still be drawing the comic strip he does (update! shows how much I pay attention, he hasn’t been on Rex Morgan for several years now.  D’oh!)

Wow, that’s a sweet Nightwing that Allred drew for that Batman ’66 Meets Wonder Woman ’77 5 cover (page 122)!

It’s the classic costume!

Oh cool, there’s a DC crossover with the Silver Surfer on page 124!  Oh, wait, that’s Captain Atom, I guess.  Oops.   My bad.

Damn cool, they got Chris Burnham to do a Flintstones cover! (page 126)

Poor Barney!

Scooby-Doo Team-Up 26 on page 127 features Hong Kong Phooey, which I believe means there is a god.

Also on 127, if you’re like me and love preview comics, the Direct Currents 2 magazine reoffered is for you.  Or me.  Or anyone with a store that gets them, because they’re freebies.  And Rich told us this was happening!

Michael Allred and his family (brother and wife) take on Forager for Young Animal on page 128. It’s Kirby’s 100th birthday this year (in August), so good for them doing a weird series like this!

Is the evil General Electric from the original Kirby stuff?  That’s awesome!  And is the BUG! title trolling Marvel for the Micronauts-related character?

Cave Carson Has a Cybernetic Eye gets a trade on page 129. I love this comic. Yes, in many ways it’s fairly traditional, with Cave fighting bad guys, but in other ways, it’s terrifically weird, from the fact that his cybernetic eye seems to be evil to the great Benday dots Michael Avon Oeming likes to use. Plus, this trade collects Tom Scioli’s back-up story about the Wonder Twins, which is something I’m pretty sure is illegal for DC to print because it’s so freakin’ weird. Tom Scioli is breaking the law!!!!

Well, at least he’s not completely wasted, out of work and down. [Little Judas Priest humor there from the comedy team of Burgas and Pelkie. We’ll be here all week! Tip your waitress!]  This one I’m pretty definitely getting because of your praise for it.  I did pass on the Doom Patrol one (I can’t get everything, and I figure it’ll either be offered again or be at a library!), but this one I think I must get.

Sweet crappin’ hell, James O’Barr is doing the variant cover to Doom Patrol 8 on page 130!!!  This makes me want to dress up as the Crow again like in my teen years!  Find me my Joy Division records!

I may go for the trade of New Super-Man on page 133, as I thought the Chinese Superman concept sounded interesting and I saw a cool spoiler about the series.  Plus, Gene Luen Yang is a good writer.

Alex Ross and Paul Dini’s Justice League comics are collected on page 137 for $75, although it’s almost 400 pages long. I heard these were beautiful but a bit light on story. Is that true? Someone out there has read them, right?

I have the Superman one, possibly the Batman one too.  I cannot remember a thing about them.  Make of that what you will.

Batwoman by Greg Rucka and J.H. Williams III shows up in a collection on page 138. This is a very good book, but it will make you sad because Rucka got pissed off at DC and never wrote the ongoing. It’s a damned shame.

I believe I’ve snagged all of the back issues of Detective with this stuff, so I don’t need this book, although it is tempting if it’s a larger size book.  The solicit doesn’t indicate that it is, though, so pass.

DC is collecting some issues of House of Secrets in a hardcover on page 139, which is 50 dollars although it’s 300 pages, too. They’re beginning with issue #92. I wonder why … Anyway, I might have to get this.

I suppose they were issues with more pages, because there are only 6 in this book.  I have the Showcase B&W collection with this stuff (and howcum they don’t do any more of those books?), so I will pass on this, but it’s good stuff.  Great, even.  Hopefully the “DC Horror” part of the title means they’ll do more of those old titles in collections.

Also on page 139 is the DC/Dark Horse collection of the 3 Batman vs. Predator minis.  I have the first 3 of 4 issues of BvP II, and it was neat, and it’s a good creator lineup, with Dave Gibbons, Doug Moench, Chuck Dixon, the Kubert bros, Paul Gulacy and Rodolfo Damaggio (and others!).  I’ll hope a library gets it!

Didn’t Dark Horse just reprint these? Or was that Batman versus Aliens? I’ll have to go down to my garage and see if no one answers me!

Batman vs. Aliens is what you’re thinking, sir, and it’s reoffered on page 145.

If you like Hawkman, there are two books on page 141 that you might like.  Death of Hawkman seems self-explanatory, and there’s also the first trade of the Geoff Johns run, which was ok from what I read of it.

Who doesn’t like Hawkman? People with taste, perhaps. When is DC going to reprint Steve Lieber’s run on the character, is what I want to know, damn it!

I’ve picked up random back issues in cheapo bins solely because of his name!  OK, it’s part of Ostrander or Messner-Loebs’s runs, too, which helps!

Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes, featuring art by some slackers named Mike Grell, Walt Simonson, and Jim Starlin, gets a hardcover on page 143. As you might recall, my disdain for the Legion is legendary, but I still might get this!

The Legion is awesome, I don’t care what you say, and I may spring for this.  I may also get the collection of the earliest LOSH stuff offered on the same page, although it’s pricey at 75 bucks.  I dread getting a book that size and price and then having the binding crap out on it!

You can tell it’s Grell because of the white guy ‘fro!

Greg Hatcher can let us know if the Tales of the Batman: Gerry Conway book on page 144 is worth it.  I don’t know enough of this stuff to judge!  Unless you know?!

No, I don’t. Conway isn’t a writer who I actively sought out when I was building up my back issue collection, so I don’t really know much about him other than he wrote Spider-Man for a long time. So I have no opinion about this.

If you’ve been wondering where your tenth anniversary edition of The American Way is, wonder no more, as DC gets on that on page 151! They’re capitalizing on John Ridley’s movie work, true, but this is a pretty good series, if I recall correctly. I’ll have to re-read it some day!

I did say to myself, “self, where is the 10th anniversary trade of The American Way?”  Why I ask myself things like this I do not know.  I had gotten the first 2 or 3 issues of this and thought it was good, and have since collected the rest of the back issues, but I haven’t read those yet (of course!).  Good stuff.  I liked Three Kings, too.  It’s a movie I’ve actually seen!

IDW:

I don’t usually care about these Funko Pop figures, but this IDW month with specials is kind of cute.  Lookit them X-Files ones!  And how can you pass on a Judge Dredd Funko Universe special, especially when it’s written by John Layman?!  (page 158-162 for the main Funko specials)

Does he say ‘I am the law!’ in a really high-pitched voice?

Gah!  IDW is celebrating Jack Kirby’s birthday well on page 176, with a SWEEET! looking Artist Edition of the Fantastic Four!  It’s more than I want to go for, but I may show them to my friend at work who’s a Doctor Doom nut!  It’s probably wrong to do so, though, since he’ll drool for it but he’s got a wife and kids to worry about!  He shouldn’t be buying this!

Is this Atomic Robo Presents Real Science Adventures trade of the Billion Dollar Plot on page 179 an older thing?  It’s got Erica Henderson art, and presumably she’s busy with Unbeatable Squirrel Girl.  Should I get this or wait for a big omnibus of RSA like the Atomic Robo omnis I’m not reading?

Yeah, it’s an older work. I don’t know if Red 5 ever collected it, but maybe they didn’t. It’s pretty good. Not as good as the main story, but pretty good.

MANNNNNN!  The entirety of Amelia Cole is offered in an Omnibus on page 180 for 40 bucks, which is way cheaper than what I paid for the…6? trades?  ARGH!  Regardless, what I’ve read of it was really really good, so this is worth your shekels!

There are five trades of Amelia Cole. Is that worse or better?

That’s 100 bucks I spent (well, less my discount) versus this 40 bucks.  OTOH, I don’t know that I’d drop 40 bucks on something I hadn’t read before if I’d just waited for this.  Granted, I bought this almost solely because it was a Monkeybrain book, so there’s that too.  (I need to do a post about the strange contortions I go through when creating my list for each Previews!)

Finally!  Saucer Country from Vertigo is finally going to be continued (and concluded, it seems) with Saucer State 1 on page 181.  Six issues, according to the Previews website, so I may be in for the single issues (although the trade might be cheaper?  Decisions decisions!)  It’s interesting that the sample pages appear to be redrawn pages from the original series, from what I remember.  It was an excellent series that ended too soon.  Imagine, a presidential candidate who might be considered crazy for claiming she was abducted by aliens.  How quaint!

I wasn’t a big fan of Saucer Country. Which is weird, given that I like the creators. But yeah, it’s cool that they’re able to finish the story.

Good for them!

I thought it was too good to be true.  The John Byrne’s Stowaway to the Stars poster book on page 184 says it’s a 4 dollar book, but the Previews website says it’s 20 bucks, which makes way more sense.  I would have gotten it for the cheap price!

The 4-dollar price tag for 32 pages makes WAY more sense. Why would it be 20 dollars for something so short? I’m not getting it either way, but I would be very surprised if it’s 20 bucks.

It’s a large size poster book, though, which I didn’t clarify, which is why I think the 20 dollar price is probably the accurate one.  Who knows, though?  We won’t, because we aren’t getting it!

If you like Mummies, there’s a Yoe Books collection on page 192 for you.  Daddies continue to get no love in this crazy whacked out feminist world of ours.

There’s Bob Powell art in that book, and Bob Powell is tremendous, so that might make it worth it on its own.

I like how he has a roll of wrapping, like it’s duct tape he just bought at Home Depot or something

Ooh, also a Yoe book, Drawing and Life Lessons from Master Cartoonists HC on page 193, with cool stuff about drawing (and apparently about life, which actually intrigues me more!) from all sorts of great creators.  Like Batman’s Joe Kubert (that’s what it says!).  Also, as we see in the preview, Alex Raymond teaches you how to draw nekkid women.  That’s probably why his death is so strange!  (Is this a teaser for my news a bit later on  MAYBE!)

I think I’ve heard of or seen the Schuiten/Peeters book Samaris here on page 194 before, I guess under the Obscure Cities name, but based on what they say is its publication history, I’m not sure how.  Weird!  It’s a “metaphor for the medium itself” with “art historical roots”, which makes it right up this Art History BAs alley!  Yes, my diploma is worthless.  Especially since I’m not entirely sure where it is.

Yeah, that solicitation text makes no sense, but I’m still getting this. The other two volumes that IDW has put out so far are gorgeous (even though I’ve only read one of them).

Image:

That is a damn creepy cover for the new Cullen Bunn book Regression on page 198, the horror version of Alex Robinson’s Too Cool To Be Forgotten.  I’ll be getting the trade, anyway!  This appears to be the first Bunn comic for Image, unless I’m mistaken?

I dig that cover. And yes, I think it’s Bunn’s first Image comic. So what, though? Does that make it better? Huh, Pelkie?!?!?!?

It’s an interesting tidbit worthy of note, dammit!  He’s one of the bigger name creators they hadn’t gotten prior to now.  You’re being so mean to me just because I didn’t start this column in a timely manner!

They took a picture of my intestines!

Why am I compelled to want the new Youngblood book?  Is it because I started collecting hardcore just before Image started?  WHY?!  Looks like they’re going to use a lot of the Alan Moore stuff, because really, why wouldn’t you?  (page 199)

I’m not sure if I’ll be getting within ten feet of this comic. I have negative interest in it, which should be impossible but isn’t whenever Youngblood is involved!

And then there’s a director’s cut of Spawn 1 on page 200 that I must have as well!  What is wrong with me?!  I will draw the line at the Spawn art book on page 201, though, although if it had the art to issue 10 I would cave like carson!

I like Jim Mahfood, so I’m considering the new Grrl Scouts book on page 203.  Probably in trade, though!

Blech, I did not like Grrl Scouts the first time it was out, so I’ll probably give this a miss.

Well that sways me, sir!

When I flipped through the Image Plus 11, there was a preview of Paklis 1 by Dustin Weaver with some creepy (but good!) art, so I may get this.  Or I may trade wait.

I’d be a lot more confident about this if S.H.I.E.L.D. had ever finished. Still, I’ll probably check it out because Weaver is awesome.

She thinks, ‘Wait, is that the final issue of S.H.I.E.L.D. following me? IT CAN’T BE!!!!!’

Because I am in the bag for Matt Hawkins’s stuff, I will be getting Samaritan 1 on page 205, but probably in trade.  Sounds like another real world action thriller like The Tithe or Think Tank.

The Dying and the Dead may just describe me upon seeing issue 4 solicited on page 207.  Egads, it’s been awhile!  there’s also a special trade of the first 3 issues offered for 10 bucks as well, if you didn’t get the singles like I’m pretty sure that I did.

Yeah, I laughed and laughed when I saw that. Hickman seems to stay on point only with East of West these days, so is it the artists or is it him? It’s frustrating, especially because this comic was pretty amazing.

He probably bristles with too many ideas for one man to flesh out properly!  Plus, DC is probably courting him to do Legion of Super-Heroes or something.  You’ll buy the Legion then, won’t ya, huh?

BWAH-HA-HA-HA!!!!!

Final story arc of Elephantmen begins with issue 77 on page 208.  I should probably catch up at some point!

I knew it was ending soon. It’s remained an excellent book throughout its entire run, which is pretty impressive. I’m very curious how Starkings will bring it into the harbor.

Well, I can’t pass up an issue of Saga for a quarter, and 43 is offered on page 210 at that sweet price!  I hope it will be shocking!

Hey, I can pass it up. Yay, me!

The trade of Mayday is on page 235. This hasn’t concluded yet, so of course I can’t offer any opinions, but Tony Parker’s art is amazing, and the first issue was very weird and very cool. Although Alex de Campi recently bitching about the lack of comics for kids 4-7 years old when she’s writing stuff like this makes me chuckle.

Well, I don’t think it’s an either/or thing.  You can write adult comics and still want stuff suitable for younger readers.  That said, from what I read of her remarks, perhaps she could put together a group of creators and pitch a monthly kids comic line to different publishers?  As to Mayday, it sounded really neat with the way she was depicting how foreign languages sound to different people hearing it, and it sounded like fun action.

Motor Crush gets a trade on page 236. I’ll review the first arc when issue #5 comes out, but so far it’s been crushingly disappointing (see what I did there?). So sad.

You may recall that I reviewed the first issue and was less than impressed.  Too bad that team didn’t blow us out of the water again!

I DID recall that, because I actually read what other people write on this blog!

I don’t always read your stuff because I’m trying to avoid spoilers, because I get to things so slowly!

Sina Grace is not always the greatest artist, but his semi-autobiographical comics are quite good, and his latest, Nothing Lasts Forever, is on page 237. I’m looking forward to it!

I thought the previews in Image Plus 11 were pretty interesting, so I may go for this.

I’m totally in for Rockstars v1 on page 239, as I like to RAWK and I like supernatural conspiracy stuff.  Art looked good too.

Rockstars is … okay. So far. I’ll review the first arc, don’t you fret!

User is collected in HC on page 240, an old Vertigo mini by Devin Grayson, with great Sean Phillips and John Bolton art.  I thought it was a bit too obvious in parts, too much of a cliché, but the art is of course cool.

Yeah, for a brief instance I thought this was something new from Grayson, and I did a double-take. Which is when I saw that it’s old. I wonder what Grayson is doing these days?

I think she did one of the Marvel prose novels (Dr. Strange, maybe?), and has done a few things here and there.  She oughta do more comics, sure!

I’ll probably get the trade of Violent Love on page 241. Frank Barbiere is a decent writer, and Victor Santos has been crushing it recently, art-wise, so this should be fun.

Also, 10 bucks for 5 issues lures me in!

The last Nailbiter trade is on page 242. I’ll have to read the entire thing when it comes out, because I’m sure I’ve missed stuff!

I was less than impressed with volume 2 after volume 1 was really good, but I may go ahead and get these trades reoffered here.  The Hack/Slash crossover is in one of the trades, right?

Yup.

Marvel:

Todd Nauck’s AMAZING cover for Secret Empire #1 is the only thing that is any good on page 2. Well, I guess Steve McNiven drawing the first issue is okay, but if he’s just drawing crap, who cares?

Look at that glorious thing!

That is a great Nauck cover.  Why is everybody falling backwards on the cover of issue 2?  What is the point of the series?  Steve Rogers is evil, the Chitauri are invading (and so now they’re different from the Kree or the Skrull or whichever they were supposed to be in the Ultimate universe?), the Defenders are fighting Baron Mordo.  WTF?

I think “Why is everybody falling backwards” is the MOST important question in Marvel Universe history. I hope there’s a 12-issue series all about the characters falling backwards!

They’re falling backwards in time to the start of Final Crisis when Darkseid fell backwards and kicked that shit off!

‘Nobody said Twister was this hard a game!’

Niko Henrichon is the new artist on Doctor Strange (page 10; with Dennis Hopeless the new writer). Well, the two issues he cranks out before needing a break ought to be very nice-looking!

I don’t know if I’ve heard of Elizabeth Torque before, but I like the two covers of hers on pages 9 and 13 of Sam Wilson and Captain Marvel.

I know I’ve never heard of her, but she has a real Joe Quinones vibe going on.

Yep, that’s one similar artist that I couldn’t think of right off.

Aaron Kuder is the artist on the double-shipping Guardians of the Galaxy (page 16). Why do they even advertise the artist if they have no respect for them?

Harsh!  I like Aaron Kuder a lot (great artist, and cool dude, as I’ve met him!), so I wish he’d be on a title I wanted to get.

Oh, I like Kuder a lot, too (his art; I’ve never met him), but there’s no way in hell he’s doing two issues a month. That’s what I mean about Marvel having no respect for the artists!

Excellent point.  I assume, though, since he hasn’t been on anything else since Death of X that he got a head start on this, but it’s not going to be THAT much of a start!

Jean Grey is now a series (page 22). And gosh, it’s about the Phoenix. Marvel makes me bang my head against the desk occasionally.

She’s a woman, she only gets one storyline!  BTW, it’s also about bangs.

Generation X is now a series (page 24). Sigh. Well, at least they’re not trafficking in nostalgia anymore, right?

Not one but two characters with antlers?  Is Jubilee still a vampire?  I know she still sucks!  HA!

Jubilee is awesome, sir. Pistols at dawn!

Cable is now a series (page 26). How’s that “de-emphasizing X-books and pumping up Inhumans books” working out for you, Marvel?

This…actually sounds like they found him a reason to exist, fighting through the timeline.  Did Pacheco do art on Robinson’s prior Cable run?

Beats me. I’m not Cronin!

I think the run with Ladronn is the one I’m thinking of.

He spells his name with an “ö,” sir!

Asgardia?  (page 37)

Don’t question the wisdom of Marvel, sir!

So it appears, in the SIXTH issue of a comic called Hulk (page 41), that a character will actually turn into the Hulk. But it might not happen, because the solicitation only says that Jen DECIDES to become the Hulk. Her decision might be on the final page of the issue! This strategy is very bold of Marvel. I’m sure the sales are rewarding their boldness!

Burn!

Venom #150 (page 42). BWAH-HA-HA-HA.

Good god, have there been that many Venom issues?  I know they did a shit ton of crappy minis in the ’90s, and they’re probably counting the Flash Thompson stuff, but…DAMN!

Just the way you like him!

I cannot deal with Ben Reilly’s mouth underneath that Scarlet Spider mask (page 44). Is that mask made out of rubber? What the fuck, Mark Bagley? It’s totally creeping me out for the second month in a row.

Just imagine breathing in and out through that.  It’s covered in your own damn spittle!

Okay, so on page 102, we get Star Wars: The Marvel UK Omnibus. It’s 800 pages long and costs $100, and according to the solicits, it has stories by Archie Goodwin, Claremont, John Stokes, Beardy McGrumpypants, Steve Moore, and Steve Parkhouse, among others. The guy who works at my retailer’s store grew in England in the 1970s and 1980s, and he claims these are just reprints of American comics, even though the solicit says they’ve never been printed in the States before. He believes they’re just random short stories stuck on the end of American reprints, which may be. But does anyone know what these are? Are they just very short stories, or are there some longer epics? I’m not sure if I want to drop a hundy on it, but I might. I’m just curious about its contents!

First, I think it’s funny that we both skipped over about 60 pages with no other comments.  As to the Star Wars book, I don’t know for sure, but I assume that the stories published here are in fact shorts done by Beardy et al (I believe at the old place, there were Legends about Beardy’s Star Wars stories, but I’m too lazy to search for them).  Just based on the numbers of the Star Wars titles included here, they skip plenty of numbers, so presumably the rest of those issues were the American comics.  Probably plenty of them weren’t published in the US before (although I thought there was a collection of some of this stuff before.  I may be wrong!).

You’re probably right, but if they’re short stories, how on earth is this going to be 800 pages long?

There…are…a lot of them?

If you like the Punisher, his early stuff and the Ennis stuff are in omnibus form on page 108.

As I recall, the Planet Hulk stuff was decent gladiator and SF stuff, so the omnibus on page 111 is probably pretty good.

Yeah, “Planet Hulk” is quite good. I don’t know if it’s worth $100, but it’s quite good.

As you know, since you read my stuff, I’ve been reading Infamous Iron Man and have been less than impressed, but the trade is there on 115 for people who don’t believe me!

I was mighty interested in the Avengers: Four trade on page 118, with Mark Waid and Barry Kitson doing a JLA Year One on the Kooky Quartet.  I may be getting this!

Deadpool the Duck sounds like goofy fun, so I may consider the trade on page 126.

I haven’t read most of the stuff collected in Spider-Man/Doctor Strange: The Way of Dusty Death (page 134), including the eponymous graphic novel, but there’s a ton of cool creators in it, with the highlight being, of course, art by Neil Vokes. Neil Vokes, people!!!!!

Yeah, I think he did the Untold Tales issue, which I have somewhere but haven’t read (after searching for it for years!), which reunited him with Kurt Busiek (although I’m blanking on what they’d done together — Liberty Project, or was it a Topps book?).  I’m definitely considering this one.

I actually know from memory that James Fry was the artist on The Liberty Project. WHY DO I KNOW SUCH ODD TRIVIA?!?!?!? So yeah, not Vokes.

TeenAgents!

On page 135, we get Amazing Spider-Man Epic Collection: Kraven’s Last Hunt, which collects far more than “Kraven’s Last Hunt,” but that’s fine. If you haven’t read it, it’s a superb story with great Mike Zeck art, even if there’s a bit too much of a “Hey, Batman is super-popular – let’s do a dark Batman story except it stars Spider-Man!” vibe going on. Oh, and Wolverine is in this collection, too. Of course he is!

If I recall, a Legend at the old place said it was in fact a Batman story before it was used for Spider-Man.  I don’t remember the details!  But I haven’t read it, and I’m considering this one!

You haven’t read it? Oh, you should. It’s terrific stuff. Classic DeMatteis (lots and LOTS of criss-crossing narrative captions, yo!) and the art really is gorgeous. Just a stupendous story.

Dude, ease up on the ‘roids!

All right, let’s check out the back of the book!

So my news is that I have franchised the Flippin’ concept, if you will.  Tim over at A Moment of Cerebus asked me (since I comment there a lot) if I would do a piece over there with Previews stuff that ties in somehow to Cerebus and Dave Sim and self publishing and stuff.  Look for it in a week or so!  Considering that you’re the one that got me hooked on AMOC (when you posted a link to it at the end of glamourpuss), it’s apropos!

I have no recollection of the glamourpuss thing. Are you sure it was me and not Chad? He was more into it than I was, although I do recall writing about the first issue. Man, I’m old.

No, no, it was you, you linked to the final essay that Dave included in the last issue (when it was posted at AMOC) in a What I Bought, I believe.  If I find the link on AMOC I can probably find around the time your post was up.

Okay, I found it. Here are my thoughts about Sim’s retirement (it wasn’t in a review of glamourpuss, it was just random ranting at the end of the post, which is why I didn’t remember it), and here’s Sim’s statement. Just in case you’re interested!

Terry Moore’s Motor Girl gets its first trade from Abstract Studios on page 258. I wait for Moore’s works until the inevitable giant complete collection, but if you don’t want to wait that long, here it is! I have no idea if this is any good, but Moore’s track record is, so we shall see, won’t we?

All I’m going to say here is that I’ll be spotlighting this one over at AMOC!

The second trade of Voracious is offered on page 261 from Action Lab. The first trade was quite good, so I imagine this one will be, too!

Well, if I get around to reading the first trade….

On page 262, Action Lab also has an interesting one in Medisin, where a group of doctors are blackmailed into being the health care givers of supervillains.  Sounds neat, so I’ll look for the trade.

Man, that guy looks bummed

Aftershock has Pestilence on page 266, which posits that the Black Plague was actually a zombie infestation.  They may have done that in FUBAR, but it’s actually an interesting idea.

I saw this and thought I’d be interested in it, until I hit the “z” word. Ugh, so tired of zombies …

Yeah, I missed that part at first.  It’s a slightly more interesting take on the “z” word than some, but yeah, zombies are boring.

OK, I’m confused, because The Normals on page 267 says Dennis Calero is drawing it, and that appears to be his art for the cover, but the solicit text says Danijel Zezelj is doing the art.  So which is it, as they’re very different artists?

That is weird. That’s obviously Calero’s art for the cover, so what the heck, man?

It’s a mystery that will never be solved!!!!!

Alterna Comics has some #1 issues on page 272 that sound intriguing. Adam Wreck is about a space-faring kid who crash-lands on a planet and has to find his parents; Amazing Age is about kids who draw comics and one day, the comics come to life; Croak is about a camping trip gone wrong; and Lilith Dark is another comic about imaginary things actually being real. None are exactly unique, but the premises are still kind of fun.

Also, they’re on newsprint and only $1.50 an issue, which is the main selling point.  I’m mildly interested in all of these, but that price makes me more interested.  I know, I’m easily swayed!

Alternative Comics has a couple neat looking ones on page 274, with Jam in the Band being the story of a female “junk-rock” band, and Resurrection Perverts v1, where a porn publisher hopes to save his business with pictures of the US President in the act, but he’s going to go into outer space.  Or something.  Nothing like those pictures could possibly exist in real life, that’s a ridiculous concept!

It sounds like you’re slagging on the leader of the free world there, sir. How dare you besmirch his fine reputation!

Like I could do worse than he does to himself …

American Mythology has on page 278 one of two new Harvey Comics that are featured in the back of the book.  Casper the Friendly Ghost, which has a variant cover by Mike Wolfer, which amuses me given the kinds of art he does elsewhere.

At least he changed his style to fit Casper’s!

Our pals at Amigo Comics have on page 281 a new Ghost Wolf comic out, The Horde of Fangs.  I haven’t read the Ghost Wolf stuff I have yet, is it good?

It was all right. Nothing too great, but entertaining.

Antarctic Press has a neat sounding comic on page 282 with Sidewinder, which sounds like it takes that one joke possible Batman from that Final Crisis tie in issue and puts it on Copperhead‘s world, with genetically created Chimerans hunted in space by bounty hunters.

Betty and Veronica gets a trade from Archie Comics on page 284. I love Adam Hughes’s art, but let’s be honest – the dude just shouldn’t do interiors anymore. This is THREE issues long, it was late, and the art is listed as “various” after his name, so he couldn’t even do it all. It’s 13 dollars for THREE issues, which is more than it would have been in single issues, and I figured I’d just wait for the trade but now I’m not even sure I’m going to get it. It’s very sad, because Hughes is such an amazing artist. He should stick to covers (and he doesn’t even seem to do a lot of those anymore) and what he rakes in at conventions (which I’m sure is a lot; the lines for his table are loooooooong).

It’s possible the various artists did the, what, 300 variant covers for this book, to fill out the page count.  Does he do sketches again?  I thought he wasn’t going to after the Boston Comic Con I got to meet him at back (gulp!) 6 years ago.  Can’t pass up that sweet cash, probably.  Not that I blame him!

I don’t know if he does sketches. Maybe just commissions? All I know is, his lines are always long. He must be doing something right!

Oh, hey, it’s the Jughead comic where the solicit on page 286 got people up in arms because the apparently asexual Jughead is affected by a magic spell that makes women desire him.  Mark Waid IS evil!

Meanwhile, on page 287 Archie offers up the Josie and the Pussycats trade, which features great art from Audrey Mok. I’ll definitely be getting this!

I’m strongly in favor of getting this.  Where’s the crossover with Jem and the Holograms?

This is the cover of issue #1, but that’s what they use in Previews, so here we go!

For some reason, Aspen didn’t get to be in on FCBD, so they’re doing a special free issue of Decimation, available on page 292.  Well, good for them!

I bet if I read the first act HC of Providence, I’d be able to say for sure if I should get the second act HC offered on page 294 from Avatar.  It’s Beardy, so I’m probably just getting it!

Not sure how much depth the story has, as it seems to be about a kid getting into the music business in the ’80s, but the 4 issue mini Last Song from Black Mask has amazingly good art from Sally Cantirino, based on the sample from page 300.  I’m also interested in X’ed TP 1 on the same page, where a dude goes killing people inside their minds, but has his own agenda!  And their book Calexit on page 301 is so NOW, man!

That is nice art, although I’m wondering what’s going on with all these rock-related comics these days. Everywhere you look there are comics linked to rock and roll. What’s up with that?

As sound is the one sense that print comics do not have any hope of conveying at all, it totally makes sense in the sense that it doesn’t make sense!  (What, you don’t taste your comics?)

Boom! has Destroyer on page 304, with the last descendant of the Frankenstein family doing Frankenstein-type stuff, presumably. It sounds kind of neat, but what struck me the most is the Dietrich Smith art. Hey, it’s a Dietrich Smith sighting! Good to see him getting work. Along with Xenobrood, The Next is one of my go-to ridiculously obscure DC series I like to reference, and Smith’s art on that was really good, so it’s nice that he’s still around fighting the good fight.

I read the first 2 issues of The Next and was less than impressed, but I don’t remember the art in particular.  I was struck by the amazingly complimentary blurbs about Victor LaValle, the writer.  I think, according to Clive Barker and Joe Hill, that he may be able to cure cancer.

Yeah, I don’t like it when the creator’s name is part of the title (I get it, but I don’t like it), and I’ve never heard of LaValle, but based on the testimonials, I think I should have!

Glad you said it first, I’ve never heard of the dude either!

You can’t just draw organs on someone and call it a day!

Sombra gets a trade on page 310, and it’s worth checking out. It’s a nifty “Heart of Darkness” riff with the Mexican-US drug trade, and it’s pretty gripping. On second thought, find the single issues. This is twenty (20!!!!) dollars for a four-issue, softcover trade. That’s ridonkulous.

Yeah, I’ll search around a bit.  Boom! is getting pricey on a lot of their trades, so I try less of them.  It’s frustrating because I’m not sure that they finish all of the minis in print, so some of them are digital or trade only.

It’s pricey, but the HC of the first 8 issues of Giant Days is offered on page 311.  I thought the first 4 issues were amazing and it was one of my favorite comics of whatever year it came out in.

More great variant covers from Planet of the Apes/Green Lantern 4 on page 313.

I know I heard about Beck and Caul Investigations, from Caliber on page 325, but I don’t know much about the story, where a werewolf and a policewoman fight supernatural evil.  Glad that Caliber seems to be surviving the untimely passing of Gary Reed.

Yeah, I hope so, but this is stuff that could have been in the pipeline for a while. We’ll see what’s going on in a year or so. I hope they keep going, because they have some very cool comics in their archives.

Well, he was just gearing up Caliber again before he died, so I suppose he had all this in the works.  We’ll see what happens (and we’ll be here to tell you about it!).

Also from them on page 326 is P.I. Jane: the Salad Days, where a young woman temps her way through the days and does detective work by night, but sometimes fantasizes about her night job during the day.  Sounds like it could be cute, and the art doesn’t look horrible, based on the cover.

I received a secret communique asking us to give a shout-out to War of the Worlds: Infestation on the same page. It’s a sequel to the classic story, and if it does well, Randy Zimmerman’s never-completed next sequel could get, you know, completed. So take a look at it! You can trust secret communiques!

Die Kitty Die!: Hollywood or Bust! shows up on page 327 from Chapterhouse. As I mentioned in my convention report (which you probably didn’t read; no problem; I promised myself I wouldn’t cry!), I didn’t get the final issue, but it’s still a fun series. I’m looking forward to more!

I…I skimmed it so far.  I intended to read it in full!  But I did find my own name in there, that was good!  I have the series, but didn’t read it yet, not surprisingly!  But I’ll keep getting it, because she am pretty.

Or BUST! Get it? GET IT?!?!?!?

As it is just a quarter, I will be getting the zero issue of Swordquest from Dynamite on page 330.  It’s actually an interesting back story that gets incorporated into the comic, where Atari went out of business before the contest here finished.

That is kind of interesting. I like Sims much more as a comics commentator than as a comics writer, however, so I’ll have to wait and see.

I haven’t read any X-Men ’92 or anything else of his comics writing, so I can’t say.  Seems he’s trying to hit the nostalgia button a bit too much, but who knows?

Well, a James Bond special written by Kieron Gillen?  Cover by McKelvie?  OK, take my money! (page 332)

Yeah, that sounds cool.

I have no interest in Red Rising, but that Eli Powell art on page 335 has a neat Sean Murphy feel to it, so I hope Powell will work on a book I want to read!

Why don’t you read Yakuza Demon Killers, which I reviewed here and which features cool Eli Powell art? How about that, Pelkie?

Dammit, THAT’S why the name is familiar!  I…I will!

Cool, a Red Sonja one shot, The Long Walk to Oblivion that has Tom Mandrake art, on page 348.  It leads into her current series, so, spoiler alert as to the ending!

Also on page 348 is the Vampirella cover that broke up Paul Cornell and Jimmy Broxton, because Jimmy Broxton didn’t think he needed to apologize for a line on the cover.  Not the, y’know, leather Nazi actually on the cover!

Um. what? This is what happens when you don’t read enough comics news! That sounds like a whole deal! Explain, Pelkie!

I’ll provide links in a bit, but over at BC there were about…oh, 20 posts about how the one line on the cover is transphobic (the “I found out he was a she…the hard way!” one).  Cornell and the Dynamite people apologized for the line and said they’d take it out, but Broxton, who actually put together the pseudo-men’s magazine cover and cover copy said he wouldn’t apologize for it, and now Cornell says he won’t work with Broxton ever again.  Interestingly enough, in the comments of one of those million posts, someone claimed that another Doctor Who writer claimed that Cornell’s pro-feminist stance was mostly a put-on to get women (which I realize is only hearsay, but it’s still funny). [Edit: Here’s one part of the story, which has links to the others.]

Wow, that’s a story. I hadn’t heard any of that.

Here is the infamous cover

Illuminati Transport is the latest book from the Fillbach Brothers, which means I will get it because I dig the Fillbach Brothers. It’s about a truck driver who gets involved in all sorts of weird occult stuff. Why no, his name isn’t Jack Burton, why do you ask? Anyway, this is on page 353 from Devil’s Due/First Comics.

It does sound fun, I’ll consider it.

Alex Puvilland is a good artist, so I’m interested in his latest book, Spill Zone, which is on page 363 from First Second. After something destroys Poughkeepsie, a young girl whose parents disappeared in the event supports her traumatized sister by riding into the destroyed area and taking pictures of the weird, reality-warping stuff within. Complications ensue, of course. Sounds ginchy.

It does sound neat.  Would anyone notice or care if Poughkeepsie was destroyed?  (Ahem…personal trauma re: women from Poughkeepsie…don’t mind me…)

I considered making a joke like that, but thought better of it. Thanks for taking the obvious road, sir!

Well, it IS a personal connection!  Fun tidbit, though, is that both Gold Key (or Western or whichever the fuck one it was) and WARP Graphics published out of Poughkeepsie!

Seems like a growth industry

451 Media Group has a book written by David Baron, better known for coloring Global Frequency among other things, called Stained, about a cyborg female bounty hunter, on page 364.  Might be neat.

G13 reprints Creepshow on page 366, which should be keen. I have no idea why I’ve read this, but I have – I probably got it out of the library when I was a lad, because I wasn’t into Stephen King back then (I’m a little bit more into his work today, but not much), and of course I didn’t read comics until I was 17, so I didn’t know who Bernie Wrightson was. I do remember this, though – it’s a cool collection of creepy stories (I remember “The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill” and “The Crate” vividly, but the others not as well). You can’t go wrong with Wrightson’s art!

I dig King and Wrightson, so I may go for this.

On page 369, Groundwood Books has a couple of volumes about grief, Grandfather and the Moon and Harvey: How I Became Invisible.  If you’re feeling gloomy!

Well, those sound charming.

Hermes Press has Sky Masters of the Space Force: The Complete Dailies 1958-1961 with Jack Kirby doing the artwork on page 370. It’s 50 bucks, but it’s also almost 300 pages and, you know, it’s Kirby. Inked by Wallace Wood and Dick Ayers. So, you know.

I think somebody put out a collection of this before, but yeah, this is tempting.

Also from Hermes on 370 (with ad on 302) is the intriguing Slaves For Gods book, a conspiracy theory/anarchists vs corporations book.  James O’Barr does some of the interiors!  But annoyingly, it’s offered with 2 different covers and 2 different album downloads.  I can’t decide, dammit!  So I’ll probably choose neither!

I saw those, and I still have no idea what the deal is. Is it an actual comic, just with different artists, or is it prose with some illustrations (probably not, but you never know), and what’s the deal with the downloads? This is just weird all around.

I’m…not sure!  But yeah, it’s weird and annoying and I don’t like it so I won’t get it!

I’m intrigued, because I’m so punk, by Hard Core Logo: Portrait of a Thousand Punks from House of Anansi Press, also on page 370.  A punk band reunites for a benefit concert, and the one dude wants to continue the band and go forward with their music.  I think this might be based on the band DOA.

Igor Baranko always does interesting work, and he’s got a new book from Humanoids on page 370, The Egyptian Princesses. Weird occult stuff in ancient Egypt? Sounds good to me!

Hey, there’s the other Harvey book, Harvey Hits from Joe Books on page 376!  Are there multiple licenses out, or did this stuff fall into the public domain somehow?

Man, I can’t figure licensing out. It’s all just weird. The Internet is unhelpful regarding Casper and his ilk, although there does seem to be some evidence that they are public domain. So who knows?

Whatever it is, it’s weird that the two books are solicited for the same month!

Brandon Thomas and Roger Robinson bring us Catalyst Prime: Noble from Lion Forge on page 381. It’s about a missing astronaut suddenly re-appearing with strange powers and amnesia. That has to suck. Is he on the run from shadowy forces? You bet he is!

The Catalyst Prime stuff sounds neat, although somebody liked the New Universe a lot, I think …

Don’t mess with angry 1970s Jesus!

Maneki Neko Books on page 384 is putting out 2 volumes of Gladstone’s School for World Conquerors.  The first volume stuff came out from Image originally, and was pretty good, so I may go for the second volume.

The “maneki-neko” is the “lucky cat” with the upraised paw in Japanese culture. I thought you’d like to know that.

Neato!

I’m not a gamer, but the story of how Gary Gygax created D&D sounds interesting, and is told in Rise of the Dungeon Master, from Nation Books on page 385.

Plus, Korem Shadmi draws it, so it will look cool and a bit sensual, so you’ll feel uncomfortable reading it!

After reprinting the old issues, Oni is launching The Damned by Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt. This was a good series back in the day, and I’m glad it’s back. Gangsters working with demons during Prohibition – what’s not to love?

Yeah!  The trade comes out this week or next, so I’ll be able to decide if I want to continue with this series past the first issue (which I’ll probably get because it’s a buck!). Nice of them to wait until the old stuff is re-released before the final orders have to be in for the new stuff! I find it hard to believe I won’t like it, though!

So I guess Letter 44 ends with issue 35 (page 390)?  I can’t remember what it was called, but there’s a new Ryan Reynolds movie coming out that sounded a certain amount like the Letter 44 premise.  Hope Soule didn’t get ripped off, although he’ll know who to sue, right?

Weird. Didn’t they just recently claim that “season one” was ending and “season two” was starting? I guess sales just weren’t what they wanted, but I couldn’t imagine it lasting much longer anyway. 35 issues seems about right for what Soule was going for.

I tapped out after the first arc, but it wasn’t bad, just not interesting enough to me to want to keep up with.  And Life is the movie I saw the trailer for, I guess.  Because you were wondering.

Night’s Dominion gets a trade on page 394, and Simon will be happy to see it’s AFTER all the issues contained therein have come out. Whoo-hoo! This is basically the Justice League set in a fantasy world, and it’s pretty good. I do hope Ted Naifeh is able to work on it for a while, because there’s a lot to explore in this world!

Yeah, sounded cool from what you wrote about it (and I skimmed, to avoid spoilers, because THAT IS WHAT I DO!).  I’m in, 10 bucks, yeah!

Also on page 394 is the Wasteland Compendium, which I assume is the first half/all of the Mitten stuff (1-31).  I got the first HC, and really dug it, so I need to find the rest of them!

It’s a great series. This is a good way to read it, too, because it takes an arc to really get good.

Not Drunk Enough v1 on page 395 by Tessa Stone sounds fun, where a repairman in a corporate lab has to fight off a creature with three other people stuck in the building.  It’s funny scary or scary funny!

That guy can still stand, so obviously he’s not drunk enough!

One Peace has an absolutely fascinating book on page 396 called Do It, by Riana Moller, who planned a school shooting as a teenager but didn’t go through with it.  It’s fascinating for that reason, as well as from a female perspective, since that is rarer for a school shooter.  I think I need this one.

That does sound cool.

Also on 396 is Foster Broussard: Demons of the Gold Rush TP, which is from Outlook Words and Art, but was previously offered by some other publisher, because I remember commenting on the guy looking douchey.  Sounds neat, though, with a con man caught between an industrialist and an evil spirit.

Hey, I remember that. Maybe it will actually come out now!

Hmm, looks like Papercutz/Charmz wants to be the new Minx, with several books offered on page 398.  Chloe and Sweeties sound ok, but Stitched by Mariah McCourt and Aaron Alexovich, about an amnesiac patchwork girl in a cemetery, and Ana and the Cosmic Race by Amy Chu and Kata Kane, about a cosmic scavenger hunt sound even better.  I hope these books do well!  (Was Stitched out before from some company?)

It doesn’t sound or look familiar, but I suppose it could have been.

On page 401, Red 5 has a Keyser Soze prequel comic.  Why?

At least they offer a trade of The Rift right below that, which sounded good because a WWII pilot went through a rift into modern times, and hijinks ensue.

Yeah, I’ll probably get that. I like how they use Jeremy Renner’s name to sell it, when he probably muttered the basic premise one night after drinking too much mescal while he was taking a break from motorboating Amber Tamblyn. Wait, isn’t that how all big-time Hollywood actors live?

I’d like to live like that!  However, it wouldn’t be Amber Tamblyn, as she just gave birth to David Cross’s spawn.  Yeah, I know, it’s so weird!  I guess women really DO like a sense of humor!  Fun fact: her godfather is Dean Stockwell!

Her name just popped into my head because they starred in The Unusuals together. Man, I really liked The Unusuals. IT WAS TOO UNUSUAL TO LIVE!!!!!

Mind you, if she wasn’t happily married, she would be a good choice for Renner to motorboat.  And now I must find out what the Unusuals is!

The Unusuals was a weird cop show on ABC back in 2009 that lasted only 10 episodes. It was wickedly funny and just plain bizarre. Renner, Tamblyn, Adam Goldberg, Harold Perrineau, and a bunch of other interesting actors. How it made it onto network television I’ll never know.

Interesting book from Scout on page 402, Mindbender, where a young boy’s mind is touched by an outside force, and keeps him in a coma for 16 years, but it is now awakening inside him.  Uh oh.

If you just stop thrashing, you can probably pull the sleeves off much more easily!

Selfmadehero has a couple of books about identity on page 402.  Herman By Trade is about a guy who can transform his appearance and appears in all the roles in a director’s movie.  Outburst is about a guy who turns into a tree.

As one does.

You know I can’t pass up mentioning the book from Seven Seas on page 404, My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness!

Sigh, Travis. SIGH.

I didn’t even bother saying “don’t judge me!”, at least!

Speaking of Ted Naifeh, on page 405 he has Heroines, a new comic about … well, a lady superhero, from Space Goat Publishing. So maybe he won’t have time for more Night’s Dominion?

Hmm, maybe not.  Not sure about this one yet, could be interesting.  Hey, she has a nose, at least!  Oddly enough, this solicit text popped up in a few other solicits online.  Oops!

Dammit, the Titan1Studios book Knight Guardians of Relativity: Aaran Seth one shot (whew!) has “contributions” from Ty Templeton, one of my favorites.  Probably just a pinup, but will I get it?  I don’t know!

Titan offers a trade of Hook Jaw on page 429, which sounded like it would be wacky fun!

I’ll probably get that, because who doesn’t love wacky fun?

Toon Books gives us a kid’s book from Ivan Brunetti, Wordplay, on page 438.  That amuses me.

Valiant has an event with Ninjak and Shadowman on page 444 called Rapture.  I hope Fab 5 Freddy and Debbie Harry show up!

[Edit: Remember to tip your waitress, ladies and gentlemen, because she’s stuck here all week with Travis and his jokes!]

Yen has an interesting one on page 461, Delicious in Dungeon, where D&D-type adventurers decide that rather than pack food for their quest, they’ll eat the monsters they fight on the way.  Sensible!

Egads, am I vaguely interested by a Zenescope book, Death Force on page 470?  Well, it does sound like Ghost Rider to me …

I have bought two Zenescope comics in my life, Travis. It’s okay! Just take a deep breath and dive right in!

I own a couple too, and not just FCBD stuff.  I tapped out when Robyn Hood’s origin was that she was raped on the side of a busy highway and no one stopped to help her because the rapist was the son of the town bigwig.

Also on page 470 is Cinderella: Serial Killer Princess in trade.  What caught my eye was the blurb from CGM: “junk food for the brain — nothing but mind numbing violence”.  Um, was that a compliment?

While The Spectacular Sisterhood of Superwomen on page 474 sounds like a cool book by Hope Nicholson (who’s been doing cool stuff from what I’ve seen), does anyone but the most dickish trolls really think that comics can’t feature strong female protagonists?  Bonus points, though, for this book featuring Little Lulu, who is awesome.

I’ll leave you with the Captain America shield offered on page 547, because I believe that’s Jim Halpert trying to be all Cap and shit.  Go kowtow to whiny ass Pam, you weenie!

Well, it’s not Jim, and now Travis has hurt that dude’s feelings

Well, that’s it for another month, everyone. I hope you find what you’re looking for in Previews, because if you can’t find it in Previews, where can you find it? Have a great day!

29 Comments

  1. Jeff Nettleton

    Monstermen is always good, even leaving aside Gianni’s art. he needs to have his hero meet up with the Franco-Belgian character Monsieur Choc.

    http://www.coolfrenchcomics.com/choc.htm

    Samaris was originally translated and published by NBM as The Great Walls of Samaris. The city name is also seen on a map in at least one other Schuiten work (possibly Invisible Frontier). This is a reprint, following IDW’s printing of The Theory of a Grain of Sand.

    Sky Masters was collected back in the 80s (early strips, anyways) and Greg Theakston’s Pure Imagination collected it in 2000.

    Don’t forget, John Krasinski was one of the leading contenders for Captain America, before Chris Evans was cast. I imagine that Cap would have spent a lot more time reacting to Peggy Carter and Gen. Phillips. Would have been perfect if Rainn Wilson had been cast as The Red Skull (he probably would have been great, too).

    1. Simon

      @Jeff Nettleton: I also thought of Choc, who I find way cooler! (See also, “Choc and Benedict – you decide” @ http://www.internationalhero.co.uk/m/mchoc.htm ) Maybe Cinebook could translate that series, as those adventures held up well. And Will’s all-ages art is great.

      But I wouldn’t call SAMARIS “a reprint”, exactly. NBM’s old edition used Heavy Metal’s fake translation that was shaved down to its adventure plot, dropping entire sentences. (One of Julian Darius’s essays discussed that butchering.) As the ad says, this “all-new creator-approved translation” is hopefully the actual story for the first time, sadly.

  2. Simon

    Welcome to Si McClure’s PINK SLIP! You may remember me from such other rag mags as @MELANIA’S SECRET and @JIHAD GIRLS! This month, I’m tickled pink by #comics!

    > “G: Previews #342”

    Yay for our cool ad mag of fake news and alt facts, man!

    > “G: try to stay positive!”

    An atom walks into a bar, “Help! I’ve lost my electron!”

    > “G: didn’t even get Previews until this week”

    Digital Previews was out on February 23, BTW.

    > “G: The second trade of Dept. H”

    VOL. 1’s reviews look good. Trying it!

    VOL. 2’s buyer-beware mousetrap is unreviewed. Waiting, but YMMV!

    > “G: Ether gets a trade”

    Unreviewed mousetrap on what sounds like teen fare with a monkey? But YMMV!

    > “G: Andi Watson’s Glister”

    Charming all-ages mousetrap, but YMMV! (Digital Previews says FC HC for a 2C SC, heh.)

    * (w/ 2 panels) http://www.readaboutcomics.com/2007/08/10/glister-1/
    * (w/ 12 pages) http://forbiddenplanet.blog/tag/glister/

    (In 2016, Andi Watson released a new graphic novel ala BREAKFAST AFTER NOON, SLOW NEWS DAY, or LITTLE STAR — but no U.S. pub took it because superheroes and other teen fares have crowded out comics for regular adults. Maybe next decade, after Raina’s readers mature?)

    > “DC”

    #deleteDC

    > “T: the Schuiten/Peeters book Samaris”

    All nine OBSCURE CITIES are good, SAMARIS is one of the four bests. Being a 46-page story (plus 12 bonus illos and four unrelated 8-pagers), it’s expensive but worth it. You can even read it online to whet your wallet!

    * Its first third and second third (but with Heavy Metal’s fake translation)

    * SPOILED synopsis, samples, Julian Darius’s analyses, edition list

    > “G: Yeah, that solicitation text makes no sense”

    I have none of what you’re quoting, so it seems the digital Previews ran an entirely different ad?

    ……………
    SAMARIS TP
    (W) Benoit Peeters (A/CA) Francois Schuiten

    Samaris is the first volume of the chronicles of The Obscure Cities, published as a graphic novel in 1983 in French and published for the first time in English in 1987 as The Great Walls of Samaris.

    This edition, marking the 30th anniversary of the original English language publication, features an expanded main story, an all-new creator-approved translation, and new coloring. The book also contains the never before published-in-English “THE MYSTERIES OF PAHRY,” a THE OBSCURE CITIES story, originally published in four parts, three in the French comics magazine, A Suivre, from 1987 through 1989, and in the December 1994 issue of Macadam-plus. (STL043368)

    SC, 9×11, 96pgs, FC SRP: $19.99
    ……………

    > “Image”

    Hey, STRAY BULLETS: SUNSHINE & ROSES (b. Jan. 2015) has an ominous ad for #24 p. 230! Could the relist of all its volumes be some sign of impeding collection?

    > “T: Regression on page 198, the horror version of Alex Robinson’s Too Cool To Be Forgotten”

    To be honest, TOO COOL TO BE FORGOTTEN felt like a pedestrian remake of Taniguchi’s A DISTANT NEIGHBOROOD as if done for a Touchstone movie. (But if you like that sorta story, Box Brown did the nice short “Memorexia”, collected in AN ENTITY OBSERVES ALL THINGS.)

    > “T: Paklis 1”

    After ISLAND quitting at #15 despite its pedigree, good luck to this. (Unless the business plan is release a few issues then make readers pay again for finished collections?)

    > “T: The Dying and the Dead may just describe me upon seeing issue 4”

    Well, its #1 felt like yet another supersized, empty-calories ish until the last page, its terrible ad copy probably didn’t help launch it, and its readers probably prefer trades anyway. But nice to see Hickman not pulling the full Ellis, right?

    > “G: Sina Grace[‘s] semi-autobiographical comics are quite good”

    How come the only autobio book you or other-Greg ever push is always one I don’t know? (Sina Grace for you, Ben Snakepit for Hatcher.) Review, or it din’t happen!

    > “Marvel”

    #deleteMARVEL

    > “G: Motor Girl gets its first trade”

    Also getting pricey and unreviewed? Waiting, but YMMV!

    > “G: [Terry] Moore’s track record is [good]”

    Well, STRANGERS IN PARADISE was good, ECHO was bad and optioned, RACHEL RISING was good — so could this one be another thingy intended to be optioned?

    > “T: Casper the Friendly Ghost”

    Evil Casper has underpants Good Casper doesn’t need. As always the message is, “Sex is evil.”

    > “G: [Adam Hughes’s] lines are always long. He must be doing something right!”

    Dave Sim explained how he used to take his time with intricate sketches because it made his lines look as long as those of more famous people, heh.

    > “T: X’ed TP 1”

    Is Tony Patrick as interesting as Ryan K. Lindsay’s HEADSPACE and Dash Shaw’s DOCTORS? Reviews will tell, but YMMV!

    > “G: Everywhere you look there are comics linked to rock and roll.”

    Mebbe they reckon dead-tree comics are like rock’n’roll vinyls, an overpriced niche market for ageing fans?

    > “G: on page 363”

    Before that on page 354, D&Q had new editions of long out-of-print classics: James Sturm’s THE GOLEM’S MIGHTY SWING and Lynda Barry’s ONE HUNDRED DEMONS! They’re very different except for being very good. (Meanwhile, on planet 358, Fanta now call a 40-pager a “graphic novel” and charge a buck a page for it, heh.)

    > “T: Rise of the Dungeon Master”

    Another year, another bio of Gygax? (Kinda like the two André the Giant bios in two years.) Mousetrap, but YMMV!

    * (sample) https://twitter.com/KorenShadmi/status/819617370775941121

    > “T: Do It, by Riana Moller”

    Riana Møller spells her name with an “ø”, sir! Don’t mess with Danes, remember Hamlet!

    Killer art, but did she slay on the story? (And being 80 pages online, is it backpadded with maps and manifesto?) $19 for 80 story pages sounds as good a deal as a hipster vinyl, but YMMV! (Also, you may like Larime Taylor’s A VOICE IN THE DARK.)

    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-01-596923041
    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-02-597119537
    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-03-597379373
    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-04-05-597570011
    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-06-597810451
    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-Chapter-12-520400308
    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-Chapter-13-521885924
    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-Chapter-14-523843681

    * http://fealasy.deviantart.com/art/DO-IT-Graphic-Novel-507222794
    * https://katsphilosophy.wordpress.com/2015/05/10/riana-moller-aka-fealasy-talks-about-what-it-was-like-to-fantasize-about-commiting-a-school-shooting/

    > “T: Herman By Trade”

    Chris W. Kim’s book looks like an intriguing and overpriced mousetrap, but YMMV!

    * (w/ 1 page) http://www.selfmadehero.com/news/2017/01/revealed-selfmadeheros-spring-releases-2/
    * (1 panel) http://forbiddenplanet.blog/wp2013/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/herman_by_trade_chris_kim_selfmadehero.jpg

    * (art style) http://www.chriswkim.com/sequential.html

    > “T: Outburst”

    Pieter Coudyzer’s book looks like a strange and overpriced mousetrap, but YMMV!

    * (w/ 1 page) http://www.selfmadehero.com/news/2017/01/revealed-selfmadeheros-spring-releases-2/
    * (1 panel) http://forbiddenplanet.blog/wp2013/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/outburst_pieter_coudyzer_selfmadehero.jpg

    > “T: My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness!”

    How DARE you mock a famous autobio webcomic about a self-harming lesbian who had to go with a sex worker just to find her first sex experience??? (THE INTERNET WILL CUT YOU UP, TRAVIS BROXTON, OF THIS YOU CAN BE SURE!!!)

    Kabi Nagata’s brutal answer to HONOR GIRL? Mousetrap, but YMMV!

    * (review) http://www.themarysue.com/rethinking-yuri/
    * (reception) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Lesbian_Experience_With_Loneliness

    > “T: comics can’t feature strong female protagonists?”

    Obvs untrue, as evidenced on p. 361 with DON’T RUB YOURSELF AGAINST MY ASS and I AM NOT YOUR MAID! …What? Talking about that, what about “Women in Comics Month”? Plenty of choice, including:

    * CROSSING THE EMPTY QUARTER (Carol Swain’s Alan Moore Blurb winner, p. 78)
    * FINDER: VOICE (Carla Speed McNeil’s Eisner Award winner, p. 78)
    * HONOR GIRL (Maggie Thrash’s LA Times Book Prize finalist, p. 326)
    * THE FREDDIE STORIES (Lynda Barry’s great strip continuity, p. 355)

    > “G: Well, that’s it”

    Well, maybe they misprinted your catalog? …Now, before I slay you all, behold my master plan!

    — THE HOUND AND OTHER STORIES by Gou Tanabe (p. 74, ALLEGEDLY $13 from DH)

    Cyclopean mousetrap, but YMMV!

    * (8 pages) https://bnccatalist.ca/viewtitle.aspx?ean=9781506703121

    (Digital Previews says 9×12 FC HC for a 5×7 B&W SC, heh.)

    — YOUR BLACK FRIEND by Ben Passmore (p. 264, $5 from AdHouse)

    Colorized version of the mini? Overpriced blackmail, but YMMV!

    * (16 B&W half-pages) http://neutronsprotons.com/2016/07/06/your-black-friend/
    * (5 FC pages) http://www.radiatorcomics.com/shop/minicomics/your-black-friend/
    * http://www.comicsbeat.com/review-shortbox-2-impressive-comics/

    — 303 by Garth Ennis & Jacen Burrows (p. 295, $20 from Avatar)

    Recently read it and it’s as good as WAR STORIES, Greg! A touch more humor and gore for a warfare/revenge story set circa 2005.

    — DAYS OF WRATH by Wayne Vansant (p. 326, $17 from Caliber)

    Their DAYS OF DARKNESS reprint was horribly pixellated, but YMMV!

    — BOUNDLESS by Jillian Tamaki (p. 354, ALLEGEDLY $25 from D&Q)

    First ever readable Boundless comic?? Bait-n-switchers, but YMMV!

    * (excerpt, blurbs) https://www.drawnandquarterly.com/boundless

    (Excerpt is an illustrated story, blurbs seem to skirt around that?)

    — HOSTAGE by Guy Delisle (p. 354, $30 from D&Q)

    Good read. Maybe wait for actual specs, but YMMV!

    Lots of planning and some small triumphs before his great escape! To keep a handcuffed man interesting, Delisle shows his mental pastimes. One is 19th-century military history from Napoleon to Gettysburg, for escapism. Another is reconstructing his environment from anything he can hear or deduce, for escaping. Its original title is ESCAPE.

    * (excerpt, blurbs) https://www.drawnandquarterly.com/hostage
    * http://www.comicsbeat.com/guy-delisles-hostage-coming-from-dq-next-year/

    (The ad’s 6×9″ becomes 6×8.5″ online, heh.)

    — UNCOMFORTABLY HAPPILY by Yeon-Sik Hong (p. 354, ALLEGEDLY $33 from B&S)

    Nice 2012 manhwa well-received in Korea, China, and Europe. Maybe wait for actual specs, but YMMV!

    To eat, they juggle kitchen garden and commercial art! They suffer harsh conditions and harsher editors. Confront rude hikers and weird neighbors. Face edible animals and each other. Reap gentle wisdom and seasonal rewards. Like Alison McCreesh’s RAMSCHACKLE and John Welding’s GOATHLAND (or Porcellino’s THOREAU AT WALDEN and Larcenet’s ORDINARY VICTORIES), it’s a chronicle of adapting to and appreciating a rural place.

    * Sample 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
    * (excerpt, blurbs) https://www.drawnandquarterly.com/uncomfortably-happily

    (The ad’s 6×9″ becomes 6×8.2″ online, heh.)

    — FURARI by Jiro Taniguchi (p. 361, $25 from Fanfare/Ponent Mon)

    It’s THE WALKING MAN set in Edo, baby!

    * http://www.ponentmon.com/comic-books-english/in-the-making/furari/index.html

    — THE TIMES OF BOTCHAN by Sekikawa & Taniguchi (p. 361, Fanfare/Ponent Mon)

    Vols. 1–2 constitute the relatively standalone Book 1!

    Meiji was both the modernization of Japan and the onset of Showa’s imperialist totalitarism. It’s chronicled through four famous struggling writers of the era. (Vols. 1–2 have a novelist, Vols. 3–4 a historian, Vols. 5–6 a poet, Vols. 7–8 a journalist, Vols. 9–10 a coda.)

    Translation halted in 2010 before the pivotal Book 3 focused on Takuboku Ishikawa, “the Japanese Rimbaud”. Maybe Taniguchi’s death will prompt them to go further this time?

    — BILLIE HOLIDAY by Sampayo & Muñoz (p. 385, $20 from NBM)

    It’s not ALACK SINNER, but their average beats most comics!

    * (3 pages) http://www.nbmpub.com/comicslit/billie_holiday/billypre1h.html

    — THE LIFE AFTER final VOL. 4 by Fialkov & Gabo (p. 392, $20 from Oni)

    God’s son waging war on religion?? Does satire stoop at nothing???

    * (9 pages) http://onipress.tumblr.com/post/155096084577

    * Be the first to review this series
    * http://www.multiversitycomics.com/interviews/fialkov-gabo-the-life-after/

    — MY BROTHER’S HUSBAND double VOL. 1 of 2 (p. 396, ALLEGEDLY $25 from Pantheon)

    Japanese award winner on Angoulême’s 2017 selection. (Though calling Gengoroh Tagame “one of Japan’s most notable graphic novelists” is fake news as it’s his first non-porn manga, heh.) Mousetrap, but YMMV!

    * (16 pages, blurbs) https://bnccatalist.ca/viewtitle.aspx?ean=9781101871515

    * (w/ 12 pages) https://eyebrowscar.wordpress.com/2016/08/29/manly-monday-my-brothers-husband-lgbt-slice-of-life-with-a-big-heart/
    * (w/ 1 sample) http://lifestyle.inquirer.net/225466/say-konichiwa-to-ototo-no-otto-japans-gay-themed-manga/

    — THE WORLD OF CHUB CHUB by Neil Gibson & Ness (p. 409, $15 from T Pub)

    Gambling on it! (After TWISTED DARK, TORTURED LIFE, TABATHA, TWISTED LIGHT, THEATRICS, and TURNCOAT, “T Pub” seemed to mean “publisher of titles starting with a T”. This one dispells that delusion! …Wait, does the article count?)

    * (sampler) http://tpub.co.uk/comics.htm?comic=comic-272
    * (story) https://www.joomag.com/en/newsstand/the-world-of-chub-chub-hidden-scribbles/0571259001403551901

    * “It is similar in tone to Calvin and Hobbes, but all the stories are based on what [I] did as a kid” @ http://comicbook.com/blog/2013/10/28/from-horror-comics-to-kids-comics-talking-chib-chub-with-neil-gibson/

    — DIVINITY by Kindt & Hairsine (p. 448, $15 from Valiant)

    DIVINITY I was good enough, despite a finale botched for a sequel.

    DIVINITY II’s reviews smell good, despite a decried finale. Trying it! [Sucka. -ed.]

    * http://comicbookroundup.com/comic-books/reviews/valiant-comics/divinity-ii/4
    * http://www.vulture.com/2016/02/valiant-divinity-ii.html

    DIVINITY III’s finale is unreviewed, botching ahoy? Waiting, but YMMV!

    * http://comicbookroundup.com/comic-books/reviews/valiant-comics/divinity-iii-stalinverse
    * http://nerdist.com/matt-kindt-talks-divinty-iii-stalinverse-and-the-world-of-valiant/

    DIVINITY IV is mentioned by Kindt and listed at Comic Vine.

    DIVINITY V may feature Rocky Balboa.

    DIVINITY VI: ABRAM ADAMS may feature a shark and skis.

    DIVINITY VII: FAITH may feature a biblical serial killer.

    DIVINITY VIII: FAITH II: LEGACY may feature a boogaloo.

    DIVINITY VIIII: THE FOURTH COSMONAUT CAN’T COUNT could happen, despite Valiant claiming that “DIVINITY was built to be told in two parts” to justify its sequel.

    — MY NEIGHBOR SEKI standalone VOL. 9 (p. 450, $11 from Vertical)

    More fun yarns from Takuma Morishige? ッ

    — INSTRUMENTAL by Dave Chisholm (p. 464, $25 from Z2)

    Z2 like to backpad, so how much story you get is any sucker’s guess, but YMMV!

    * (preview art) https://www.davechisholmmusic.com/

    — JAPANESE NOTEBOOKS by Igort (p. 473, ALLEGEDLY $30 from Chronicle)

    Sacco, Delisle, and Barthes walk into a sushi bar. Overpriced mousetrap, but YMMV!

    From the author of THE UKRAINIAN AND RUSSIAN NOTEBOOKS, and based on decades spent in Japan. Roland Barthes said he couldn’t care less about Japanese but learned it anyway to see what Western languages were missing. It’s one way of boarding such book!

    * (20 pages, blurbs) https://bnccatalist.ca/viewtitle.aspx?ean=9781452158709

    (Chris Ware and David Mazzucchelli blurbs!)

    TLDR: Until THE TIMES OF BOTCHAN gets to Takuboku, what about a glimpse of his haiku-like tanka?

    “loathe not the beggars
    “my friend
    “I was like them when starving”

    “tired of crying and crying
    “picking up a mirror
    “I make faces and faces”

    “yellow autumn flowers
    “behind the school library
    “still don’t know their name”

    “a business-ignorant poet
    “those who saw me that way
    “I pried money from them”

    “tired of that lamp
    “the next few days
    “candlelight comforted me”

    1. Greg Burgas

      Simon: Digital Previews? What the heck is that, man? (I have considered looking at them, but then I wouldn’t have page numbers and occasionally the on-line stuff is in a different order than the printed version. I remain old-school!)

      Interesting to know about Samaris. IDW’s European reprints have been pretty keen so far, so I have high hopes about this one.

      Yeah, that’s the solicit in the catalog. There’s just a lot of information to process, man! It’s also NOT the first one IDW has published, so when they say it’s the “first” in the series, it’s kind of weird. Don’t judge Travis and me, man!

      Here’s my review of Not My Bag, Grace’s first autobiographical book. I didn’t love it, but I’d recommend it!

      Hey, I like Echo! 🙂

      I recently re-read 303 and was disappointed. It was good, but I liked the first three issues more than the second three. Both of them seemed rushed, though – I thought both could have been 4-5 issues each. But yeah, it’s a solid war comic.

      I probably would have caught Furari when I sat down to order, but I missed it this time around, so thanks for the heads-up!

      1. Simon

        Greg: Thanks for the link, I’ve added NOT MY BAG to my order, and confirmed it after s’more digging:

        * (w/ 2 pages) http://www.cbr.com/review-time-with-not-my-bag/
        * (w/ 2 pages) https://seanddaily.wordpress.com/2013/07/23/comic-book-review-not-my-bag-by-sina-grace/
        * (w/ 1 sample) http://theslingsandarrows.com/not-my-bag/
        * http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-1-60706-597-5

        (We’ll see if you review NOTHING LASTS FOREVER!)

        A map of THE OBSCURE CITIES’ standalone stories:

        1. THE GREAT WALLS OF SAMARIS (1983 / English [1987] 2017)
        2. FEVER IN URBICAND (1985 / English 1990)
        3. THE TOWER (1987 / English 1993)
        4. THE ROAD TO ARMILIA (1988 / English scanlation)
        5. BRÜSEL (1992 / English 2001)
        6. THE LEANING GIRL (1996 / English 2014)
        7. THE SHADOW OF A MAN (1999 / English scanlation)
        8. THE INVISIBLE FRONTIER (2002–2004 / English 2002–2004)
        9. THE THEORY OF THE GRAIN OF SAND (2007–2008 / English 2016)

        About SAMARIS, I agree its ad copy makes little sense. (The opening data is refreshingly honest, but then why go into such an absurd level of publishing details without saying anything about the actual story?) I was just wondering if you had a different text because you were quoting stuff not in the ad — but I’ve now seen they were extra “bullet points” not in my text-only Previews.

        (I get Previews page numbers from the order-form files, which is old-school, but some sites have a fat PDF of Previews with page numbers and all.)

          1. Simon

            Greg: I guess Alaxis wanted to make a splash with select unseen works, rather than reprint those snubbed in the 1990s? Especially as the market for the latter is necessarily even smaller, most interested people having the old editions.

            (IDW does the same for CORTO MALTESE, starting with book 2 after book 1 was poisoned by Rizzoli. Fanta did the same when they picked up KRAZY KAT, collecting the new strips before circling back to those already released. Cinebook does it with some of their series too, though maybe less justifiably.)

            But why is it so “annoying” here? They’re standalone graphic novels. I suppose the “original order” could show the artist’s evolution, but that’s a nice-to-have that could prevent the very possibility of completing such series. Does one need to read Shakespeare’s plays in the order he wrote them? Does one need to watch Kubrick’s films in the order he made them?

          1. Simon

            The few “links” are winks. For instance, the main character of book 2 was inserted in the redrawn finale of book 1, but it’s a cameo. Or, the Leaning Girl reappeared as an adult in GRAIN OF SAND, but you don’t need to know her (just as you can enjoy THE CALCULUS AFFAIR without reading the TINTIN book where Calculus appeared). And they can be read in any order without spoiling previous books.

  3. Eric van Schaik

    If you think you’re the only ones who can make Judas Priest jokes you’ve got another thing coming :). We dutch can be very funny too. Have you seen the The Netherlands Second film from Arjen Lubach? Check it out. After that other nations followed, but you can’t beat the original.
    Today is election day in Holland. Let’s wait and see if enough people are smart enough not to vote for a Trump clone (Geert Wilders). Strange that people with strange haircuts are not the most tolerant.
    Thanks for pointing out the second Gladstone’s school for conquerors tpb. Apart from that I agree with tomfitz, not much.
    As you know i’m in a divorce. I can still pay the mortgage so I can keep the house. We let the kids stay in the house and when my (ex) wife has a house one of us stays there for a week. It’s called “birdnesting”. We think that this is the best for our kids (2 autistic).
    While typing this i’m listening Blue Oyster Cult (on your feet or on your knees). These fine guys come to Holland in june. It will be a blast to see them again. I wonder how long they can keep up. They are not that young anymore.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Eric: Man, I hope Wilders doesn’t win. I know very little about him, but what I do know isn’t pretty. As I type this, he’s losing, so fingers crossed!

      I would hate to go through a divorce, so I feel for you, man. I hope it goes well, and having a child with special needs myself, I hope you and your ex can do what you can for your kids.

      Man, Blue Oyster Cult! I haven’t thought about them in a while! 🙂

  4. Eric van Schaik

    Thanks for the kind words Greg.
    We’re still a team when it’s about the children, but unfortunately no love from her side anymore.

    A shame that there is not enough thought about BOC. Have you seen the guys on tour? Last friday I saw Blonde Redhead. I don’t know if you are familiar with them.

    Wilders is one of the losers (luckely) of the election. If all goes well he will not be in the next government.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Eric: Good to know about your kids. You definitely don’t want them getting caught in the middle.

      No, I’ve never seen Blue Oyster Cult in concert. Sorry! And I’ve never heard of Blonde Redhead. To the internets to find out more!

      Man, that’s good news about Wilders. I have some hope for humanity!

  5. John King

    As a Brit who started collecting American Comics as a reader of Star Wars Weekly here is my understanding of the (approximate) contents of the Marvel UK collection

    1) The Pizzazz strip – included because of the last 2 3-page chapters making their debut in Star Wars Weekly – total length 54 pages

    2) 6 issues (inventory perhaps?) written by Archie Goodwin and Chris Claremont, drawn by Carmine Infantino which didn’t get printed in the U.S. Star Wars series – total length 102 pages

    3) 8 stories by Marvel UK 5/6/15 pages in length – total length 71 pages

    All of these were included in the Dark Horse Omnibus: Wild Space volume 1

    As for the other 580 pages:-

    Covers – there were more than 300 issues of Marvel Uk’s Star Wars and every one of them had a cover
    There were also full pages of “pin-up” art (and some double pages in the middle)

    Movie Features – interviews, a 2 page glossary , a page on the model makers, Star profiles of the actors (some are 5 pages, summarising the actor’s career, family, astrology,etc) and other looks at the making of the movies (probably mainly focussed on the original movie – I don’t remember if they were still doing that sort of thing when Empire Strikes Back came out)

    Now to go back to the important questions like have all set 2 been in Bruce Wayne’s Kitchen and set 3 all had sex with Hawkeye…or is it the other way round?

      1. John King

        the solicitations I’ve seen say “a veritable treasure trove of UK-exclusive covers, pinups, posters, articles, interviews, star profiles, activities and other goodies never before seen by American eyes” so there will be covers and features (though they don’t say how many).
        All the issues of Star Wars/Empire Strikes Back listed in the solicitations contained part of one of the stories I listed. (60 finnished the Pizzzaz storyline, 94-99,104-115 were the Infantino-drawn stories. 149, 151, 153-157, 159 were the 8 Marvel UK stories)

        Of the other 2 publications they list, I bought one 40 years ago and, if I remember rightly, it was all features and no story (except for a summary of the movie’s plot with stills).

        The other one, I did not buy (or look at) – I understand it was partially reprint of U.S. strips and 3 illustrated prose stories.
        I’m assuming the prose stories will be included but note:-
        1) it’s not proper Star Wars but rather a spin-off series
        2) They won’t take up many pages because they’ll be short (and furry)

        so still probably 560+ pages of covers and features

  6. Hi Greg and Travis.
    My name is Mark Hay, and I am involved in the Hermes Press Slaves for Gods project as an editor that you mentioned in this month’s Flippin’ Through ‘Previews’. To try and clarify, we are printing a 128 page original graphic novel (comic, not prose). Some of the pinup type images you are referring to are chapter dividers, and there are some quote pages that are also pinups. Aaron Minier is in the interior artist, although there are pinups by James O’Barr, Sebastian Fiumara and others as well as Covers by Jock & Charlie Adlard.

    These Machines Are Winning are a music & art collective, meaning we are a group of writers, artists, and musicians. There are two covers because the band (music part of the collective) wrote & played two different albums worth of music that tie into the universe written about in the comic.

    I’d be happy to answer any specific questions and provide you all a one a video snippet that shows more of the art, and a sample of some of the music.
    Thanks. Mark Hay, owner of Splash Page Comic Art & a member of These Machines Are Winning.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Corrin: Well, I like Dept. H perfectly fine, but I do agree it’s taking its time to get to where it want to go. But having read Ether, I agree it’s very good. I just didn’t love the cliffhanger at the end, because there was no indication it was going to be one of these “series-of-mini-series” kinds of things, and I would like it if Rubin could continue on it, because his art is very good. We shall see what comes next!

      1. Simon

        – “I just didn’t love the cliffhanger at the end”

        Isn’t that why most trades are now listed before their finale can be widely reviewed? (In a similar vein, the mousetrap MY FAVORITE THING IS MONSTERS GN has landed to reveal itself a Part One instead of a graphic novel, on top of being mostly B&W instead of FC, and 380 pages instead of 430.)

        That’s why I see less and less reasons to play the mug’s game of pre-ordering comics, heh. (And they can be ethically downloaded for free, cos takin’ from thieves ain’t no crime!)

        BTW, the April Previews is out, 450MB PDF. Would that be useful to give some lead time to Ravis-Tay?

        1. Greg Burgas

          Simon: Ha! Possibly …

          I didn’t know that about My Favorite Thing Is Monsters. That’s annoying. They had sold out of it at the Fantagraphics table at ECCC, or I could have looked through it and seen that. Thanks for the warning!

          Travis mentioned that he was going to try to get a jump on Previews. We shall see if he succeeds!

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