Celebrating the Unpopular Arts
 

Flippin’ through ‘Previews’ – April 2021

Hey-ohhhh! Let’s get a look at Previews #391!

As always, Travis is in black, while I’m in blue. We forgot to make that distinction last month, so you may have been confused and thought Travis was being very clever because his stuff was in blue. Don’t worry – Travis’s black words were just as dumb as they usually are!

Well, I know you are but what am I?

Oh, I am wounded by your rapier-like wit!

Frank Quitely: too rich to do anything but covers!

Image:

Here are the solicits!

What sweet hell is on page 52? Spawn’s Universe? THREE — count ’em — MOTHERFELCHING THREE series coming out of the so-called “Spawn Universe”? SISTERSWIVING GUNSLINGER SPAWN?!?!?!? Doesn’t McFarlane have baseballs to spend ridiculous amounts of money on?

He finally got the baseballs out of hock, so now he can do more crazy shit like come out with more titles of the same sort of character in it.  I heard about this and I tip my hat to Toddy Mac for topping Cerebus’s 300 issues.  I can’t say I won’t be tempted to buy this, though!

J. Scott Campbell never disappoints if you’re looking for big boobs!

I mean, I’m going to get Compass on page 58 (in trade, of course), because it’s about a Muslim polymath in the 13th century who ends up in Wales, so it has so many things that interest me that I can barely stand it, but as usual, I’m going to be the bummer guy and point out that the idea of a woman being able to gain all the knowledge this one apparently possesses and move freely across the Middle East and Europe IN THE 1200s is fairly ridiculous. I’m sure they won’t address it even a little bit, but hell, I’ll still get it and probably dig it.

Yeah, that’s a cool concept, and I too hate when historical writers seem to ignore that certain groups didn’t have the same rights that they do these days.  I seem to recall that Neal Stephenson addressed things like this a bit in the Quicksilver series, set in the 17th century, iirc.  Also, what does Greg Rucka have to do with this series?  I thought it was an Old Guard spinoff at first, but re-reading the solicit, I didn’t think so.

Rucka probably got drunk one night and wrote this down on a napkin while Jen was dragging him out the door, and when he woke up the next morning he couldn’t figure out where he wanted to go with it, so he farmed it out to a friend. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

Jim Lives: The Mystery of the Lead Singer of the Doors and the 27 Club is a mouthful, certainly, but despite my long-standing utter hatred of the Doors and Jim Morrison, this might be interesting. The creators did the similarly-themed Paul Is Dead, and while that book was far too short, this appears to be a bit longer, so they might be able to dig into it a bit more. Ernesto Carbonetti is a terrific artist, so I might have to pick this up because who doesn’t love a good rock star conspiracy book?

I dig the Doors, and conspiracies like this are fun, but I might wait to see if the “trilogy” mentioned is collected in one big volume.

Shaky Kane is doing a comic on page 62 called Kane and Able (of course), and, I mean, any Shaky Kane comic is bound to utterly bizarre, weirdly beautiful, and creepily fascinating, so yeah, I’ll be getting this.

I just passed up on a Shaky Kane Kickstarter for Weird Work, which down the line I hope to get that series, but I do love his art.

If I can’t stop staring at the lube, I’m going to mention it so you can’t either!

On page 64, we find The Six Sidekicks of Trigger Keaton, in which a famous movie star is killed and the actors who played his sidekicks band together to solve the mystery even though it appears no one liked him very much. Kyle Starks is fine, I guess, and Chris Schweizer is a terrific artist, and this sounds nifty. I just get sad thinking about the fact that Schweizer has apparently abandoned his Crogan Adventures. They’re so much fun!

This does sound fun.  I never read the Crogan Adventures, so I’ll have to check them out some time.

They’re graphic novels about one family and the many things the ancestors did, told by a dad to his kids in the present. Oodles of historical fun!

Vinyl on page 66 sounds interesting, but a bit confusing. A serial killer infiltrates a cult because his “best friend,” the FBI agent who’s tracking him, has been kidnapped by said cult. Is this the killer’s friend from childhood, and they took different paths? Does the killer just think the agent is his best friend? I DEMAND ANSWERS!!!! Anyway, it looks and sounds neat.

I do like a mysterious concept, and it would be fun if the killer just thinks that the agent is his friend.  Maybe better would be if they are friends but the agent is too dumb to know his friend is a killer!

Oh, look, on page 68 THERE’S A FURSHLUGGINER ISSUE OF ANT!!!!! Yes, the comic that literally no one demanded is BACK, after a 14-year hiatus. Erik Larsen, inexplicably, is writing and drawing this, so that’s … something. IT’S ANT, FUTHERMUCKERS!!!!!!

I’ll give Larsen this, he doesn’t let something go!  I barely remember the concept or premise of this book.

Mario Gully commands you to buy this comic!

If you missed Dracula, Motherfucker! the first time around, you didn’t miss that much, sadly. But hey, it’s back in print on page 77! It’s a shame that Alex de Campi’s story is kind of dull, because you would think Dracula on the loose in 1974 Los Angeles would be excellent, but she really doesn’t do too much with it, unfortunately. What is amazing about the book is Erica Henderson’s art, which is BY FAR the best work I’ve seen by her (and I like Henderson!). It’s absolutely stunning, and it makes the book much, MUCH better than it would be with a lesser artist. So it would be nice if the story was up for it, but you can enjoy the art!

That’s a lot of back list books listed.  From what I’ve heard, Image occasionally tells people to buy up their warehoused back stock or else they’ll pulp it, like they did to Brian Bolland and his art book (according to a Bleeding Cool story from a couple years ago).  I’m hoping that all the stuff they’ve listed here isn’t on the pulping block if they don’t get sold through Diamond!

Well, that would suck. Way to bring me down, Pelkie!

That’s how I roll in moody black!

Dark Horse:

Take a look at all the solicits!

So Jeff Lemire is doing Black Hammer Reborn, which takes his tale 20 years into the future, and that’s fine. I might even buy it! (I’ve avoided most of the spin-offs.) But I’m a bit cornfused. In the solicit listing, it says Caitlin Yarsky is the artist. In the text, it heralds Marley Zarcone as the new series artist! What the what? The sample does not look like Zarcone’s art, but she could have changed her style. Come on, Dark Horse, what’s your damage?

Wasn’t the Quantum Age already in the future?  I’m so cornfused too!  Anyway, this book is on page 104, and on page 107, the fifth issue of Black Hammer Visions has a story by Kelly Thompson, so that’s cool.

The Worst Dudes on page 106 could be fun. It’s about awful people searching the galaxy for a missing pop star, because that’s just what you do. Anyway, at the bottom of the page it reads “Lobo Meets The Big Lebowski but with more [censored]!” What could that be? Warm milk? Republicans? Ear wax? Yachts? What could be so horrific it needs to be censored in the solicit text?!?!?!?

Rugs, obviously.  They tie the whole series together!

Bwah-ha-ha-ha!

Nobody’s kicking anyone in the balls, so how bad can they really be?

Cullen Bunn has a new comic on page 108 with Parasomnia, about a dude who lost his son in a weird world where dreams are real, I think? Anyway, much like Vinyl above, it’s about a dude looking for someone and a cult is involved. Read them both in one sitting!

Sounds cool!

The Secret Land on page 110 is about two people who plan to marry, but one is fighting World War II in the Pacific, believing the other is dead, who’s a spy inside the remnants of the Third Reich. Plus, there are monsters? Sounds pretty keen, honestly.

And I believe Tomas Aira, the artist, has done War Stories with Ennis before, although this one won’t be quite as historically accurate.  I assume.

I, um, haven’t read Crimson Flower yet (it’s not like Travis not reading things; I’m waiting for the last issue to come out!), but the trade is on page 113. It’s certainly an interesting-looking comic!

I’m not sure if I’ll get The Victories Omnibus on page 116, but I’ll think about it. Michael Avon Oeming’s superhero story is collected in one place, and it’s not a bad price – 30 bones – for a chunk of comics. I’ve liked some of his writing in the past, so I’ll probably get it, but I’m not sure yet.

I actually read a few issues of this.  I don’t really remember much about it, but it was ok-ish?  I think?

There’s another early Troy Nixey collection on page 117 called Bacon and Other Monstrous Tales. I don’t love Nixey’s writing, but I do dig his art, so I’ll probably get this.

I think I have all the single issues listed here, so I guess it would have to be the extra stuff that I want, and I do like his art, but I don’t know if I like it enough to get this book at regular price.

On page 122 is volume 2 of Steeple by John Allison of Bad Machinery and Giant Days, two of my favorites, so I’ll have to get this.  I of course haven’t read volume 1 yet!

Come on, man, what the heckin’ heck?

On page 124 I thought I was seeing an EC Archive of MAD, and wondered when DC stopped doing that, but upon re-reading, I see that it’s MD, the New Look book about doctors.

Tales Calculated to Drive You … well, Healthy, I guess?

Nexus: The Newspaper Strips are resolicited on page 125. I imagine COVID put the kibosh on them, but why that should be the case, as they’re just reprints of things done a long time ago, I don’t know.

I thought they put this on Kickstarter not too long ago, so maybe Dark Horse wasn’t going to publish it for a bit, or they were up in the air about it?

“Nobody wants to see more Dude art!!!” said some fired guy at Dark Horse, probably.

IDW:

Check out the solicits!

On page 141 is the Art of Rush, featuring the band and their album art.  I might get this for my pal who loves Rush, but it doesn’t come out until after his birthday, grr!

Maybe, just maybe, instead of this, you could get him a card that reads “Stop liking Rush, ya idgit!”? Just a thought …

Oh, shit, you did not just go there!

Ah, I don’t have a huge problem with Rush, it’s just that three of my closest friends growing up were REALLY into Rush, and I just never got into them, so it annoyed me that they would always discuss the band. So I like poking fun at Rush fans every once in a while.

It’s a little surprising you aren’t into Rush given some other bands you dig.

I totally agree. I’m not entirely sure why I’m not more into them.

Yes, we get it – you’re CANADIAN nerd rockers, not dumb ‘Muricans!

Hey, why not a comic about Marie Curie? On page 151, we find Marie Curie: A Quest for Light, which is written by two Danish scientists and features art by Anna Blaszczyk, who’s quite good. I’ll probably take a look at this.

There’s a trade of Scarenthood on page 158. Despite the groan-inducing title, this sounds like a fun comic about suburban parents who need to fight Cthulhu, basically.

Yeah, I’ve been waiting on the trade for this!

I love when IDW does “Artisan Editions” because their “Artist’s Editions” are too rich for my blood, and on page 159 we get an Artisan Edition of Steranko’s Nick Fury stuff, and I will be all over that shit. Despite Steranko saying some stupid things recently (I’ve met him once, and he seemed like the kind of guy who would say stupid things), you cannot deny his talent, so I’m looking forward to this.

This sounds awesome, and for the price it should be awesomer!  I need to get a collection of all of his Fury stuff, though, as I haven’t read it before.  And I haven’t heard about what Steranko has said lately — oh, I see.  Sigh.

The Star Trek: Debt of Honor reprint is resolicited, and I imagine this is another inexplicable COVID casualty, so let’s hope it comes out this time. I’ve never read it, but I imagine it looks superb.

I think I’ve read it.  It was probably interesting, but I can’t remember after all these years.

Marvel:

Rich has all the solicits!

Planet-Size X-Men #1 is on page 13. PLANET-SIZE!!!!! Because Giant-Size isn’t impressive enough? This is, I should point out, listed at 48 pages, so maybe 38-40 pages of story, depending on advertisements and whether Marvel considers the cover part of the page count (they probably do). So if this is Planet-Size, Neil DeGrasse Tyson might want to take a look at it and see about getting it downgraded. It’s also drawn by Pepe Larraz, which is a good thing, but is Larraz such a SUPER-DUPER SUPERSTAR that the solicit would read “This is an X-Men book drawn by superstar artist Pepe Larraz. It is absolutely the most important issue of the month.”? I mean, that’s a bold statement. It seems a bit excessive, to be completely honest, and I dig Larraz’s art.

It’s kind of funny, I suppose?  I was hoping this would at least be a larger size book, dimensions-wise, but not that either.  More like Dwarf Planet Size, muthafukkas!

I mean, the logo is bigger than usual …

Speaking a weird stuff, Marvel is dedicating 12 separate issues this month to something called “The Hellfire Gala,” and I really, REALLY want there to be absolutely no action in any of these issues, just mutants dancing and drinking and gossiping and doing coke in the bathroom. It won’t happen, but I wish it would. WHY DOESN’T MARVEL EVER APPEASE ME?!?!?!?!?

That sounds more fun than whatever they might be doing!

Although the solicit to Way of X #3 on page 25 (what the hell, Marvel, with these eleventy-million X-titles?) does indicate that there will be … a SEXY SAXOPHONE SOLO! I’d be there for that.

That’s a pretty good cover for this comic, I must say

Ed Brisson and Kev Walker is a terrific team for Predator (page 33), so I’ll probably get the trade. Also: WHY MUST DISNEY OWN EVERYTHING?!?!?!?

I just saw on the Previews site that the Predator stuff is getting delayed.  Dunno why.

Well, balls.

I wasn’t sure what the deal was with the Demon Days series that Peach Momoko is doing for Marvel (page 41). The first one seemed like a one-shot, but I guess she’s doing five one-shots that somehow connect. I dig her art quite a bit, so I’ll get the trade of this. X-Women in feudal Japan? Hells yeah!

Spider-Man wants to get in on the big stupid quasi-crossover thing, so there’s a Chameleon story running weekly in June (beginning on page 51 with Amazing Spider-Man #67). I just wanted to point out that The Foreigner makes an appearance in this story. I’ve always loved The Foreigner, because he seems like a cool dude but he has that stupid-ass name, as if he were a (foreign) dad telling his kids he’s going to become a supervillain and saying, “I’m going to operate in America, so I’ll call myself … The Foreigner!!!!” and the kids telling him how cool it is before walking away and laughing at him and returning to posting pictures of baguettes and lederhosen on Instagram (isn’t that what foreign kids do?). Good for him, showing up!

Maybe he wants to know what love is?  He should get double vision powers and get cold as ice and hot blooded, but Aqua Teen already did that joke.  “Because that was Loverboy, and Loverboy has always sucked.”

I don’t watch ATHF (as the kids call it), but I do dig me some Foreigner. The Foreigner always fights tooth and nail!!!!

So … on page 62, we get The Trials of Loki: Marvel Tales, which Marvel is touting as an anthology series, which means basically reprints of old stuff (they did Thanos last month). That’s great and all, but this collects a series from 2020 which was four issues long. Were they ever actually published, because I don’t remember. If they were, they probably sold at 4 bucks a pop, and Marvel is collecting/reprinting them for 8 dollars, which is half the price of getting the single issues. I might get this, because it’s Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and at least some of it is Sebastian Fiumara, but that’s a weird price point unless it was released digitally for a much cheaper single-issue price. You go, Marvel!

Not sure where you saw 2020, but the digital solicit says this was the 2010 Loki mini.  I heard this one was decent, so I might get this.

Whoops! Read it wrong! I didn’t think this was from 2020, but my brain refused to accept that it reads “2010” in the catalog!

On page 85, Marvel brings us Kull the Conqueror: The Original Marvel Years Omnibus, which is the … third? volume about Kull? I suppose last month’s Kull the Destroyer Omnibus was the second? Maybe? Marvel is weird, y’all. However! this has some cool stuff, and despite the by-now-normal-but-still-annoying $125 price tag, I’ll be picking this up.

Why is Marvel resoliciting the Wolverine: Black, White & Blood Treasury Edition (page 102) so soon after soliciting it in the first place? That’s odd.

It’s not on the digital order form, so it looks like it was just listed again for some reason?

I’m kind of interested in The Union: Britannia Project on page 104, despite it being a “King in Black” book, because it’s not every day Paul Grist writes a freakin’ Marvel comic, so I want to see what’s what.

About every 20 years, I think, if I remember when that Daily Bugle mini came out.  I do like British characters.

I’m pretty sure I own M.O.D.O.K.: Reign Delay, but I don’t the other M.O.D.O.K. comics collected in M.O.D.O.K.: Head Games (page 106), so I’ll pick that up. Who doesn’t love M.O.D.O.K.? Commies, that’s who!

Mental Organism Designed Only for Kookiness!

U.S.Agent: American Zealot sounds fun, as John Walker is a douchebag, but it appears he has to fight an even bigger douchebag, and Georges Jeanty draws it, so it will look keen. I do love that it’s written by “Priest,” as I know Christopher P. has done that a lot, but I guess Marvel is feeding into his delusion that he’s as big a name as “STERANKO!” or “KIRBY!” and can get away with just his last name.

I wouldn’t be surprised that he’s started doing that more because for the comics writer, “Christopher Priest” is a pseudonym, but there’s a science fiction writer for whom that’s his real name, and he has expressed displeasure with Priest for using his name.

Get the hell out of here with yer goldanged “logic”!

Dang, Marvel has New Mutants Epic Collection: Sudden Death on page 110, in which Doug Ramsey gets killed (um, spoilers?). These aren’t great comics, but they’re decent enough, and Marvel is actually getting around to collecting them!

On page 115 is the trade of Al Ewing’s run on Ultimates, which I’d heard was very good.  I think I snagged some of the issues of this in a back issue dive, but I didn’t get them all.

Dynamite:

I guess you can check out the solicits here.

Dynamite is soliciting twelve (12) single issues in this catalog. Bettie Page is the star of one (1), James Bond is the star of one (1). Five minor characters star in one (1), and Purgatori co-stars in one (1). Vampirella appears in six (6) issues, and Red Sonja appears in five (5). That is serious commitment to two characters!

Boom! Studios:

Take a look at the solicits here!

I don’t know the creators of Good Luck (page 204), but it sounds fun. In a world where everyone but a few teenagers is born with “luck,” the world is falling apart and those same teenagers need to save it. Of course they do!

Sounds interesting.

Cullen Bunn needs to pay some bills, because he has another series on page 206 called Basilisk, which is about a group of people sharing a hive-mind and doing terrible things and the one of them who escapes and eventually needs to hunt down the others. Sounds nice and creepy, and Jonas Scharf is a pretty good artist.

I hope she doesn’t get behind the wheel!

DC:

Have a gander!

There’s a Batman/Fortnite crossover. I repeat: THERE’S A BATMAN/FORTNITE CROSSOVER. I mean, yay? There is no writer listed, but the “story consultant and concept” is by Donald Mustard, which I love. I don’t have an interesting name, and if that is indeed that dude’s given name, I love it. Even if it’s not, the fact that he chose to call himself “Mustard” is bizarrely awesome. (Recently, in the book I am reading, I learned of the existence of Stuyvesant Fish. There is nothing that screams “I’m a rich white guy born in the 19th century!!!!” than the name “Stuyvesant Fish.”)

Impressive ‘stache, though

Ooh, is that the guy they named Fishkill after?  And you’ll always be Grape Burpgas to me, sir!

Um, no. The town is literally named “stream with fish in it,” which is the most generic name in existence (except for Peopletown, Nevada, presumably). The Fishes are a prominent family, though, but I still think the town is older.

… Now I’m sad I’m not named “Grape Burpgas.”

Well, is he at least the dude they named half of Bed-Stuy after?  And if not, why is he in your book at all, dammit?!?

Bedford-Stuyvesant was named after Peter Stuyvesant. This guy just had that first name. He’s in my book because he was a rich dude who hated income tax, so he joined a group dedicated to repealing Prohibition!

Also, I can’t deny that the idea of Batman vs. Snake-Eyes in issue 3 isn’t kewl!

Tom King and Bilquis Evely are doing a mini-series, Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow. I’m surprised it’s not a patented “Tom King 12-issue series,” but I’ll still get the trade, because Evely is terrific and King is quite good when he’s not rawdogging Batman.

Sure, let’s give her a sword

Whistle is one of those YA graphic novels that DC is putting out, and it’s about a teenager who apparently lives a perfectly helpful life without ever worrying about money (seriously, she “advocates for her community” and volunteers at a pet shelter and her mom has cancer – how does she eat?) and how she reconnects with her “uncle,” who’s the Riddler, I guess. I just want to mention this because no one from DC has called me to write my “E. Nigma, Private Eye” series yet, and it makes me sad. But this might be keen, too.

Well, it says right there, she’s doing jobs for “uncle” Eddie for money to live on.  And now her ethical dilemma is in having found out how he makes his money.

Sorry, I meant prior to doing jobs for the Riddler. I hope they make it clear that she has to do jobs for him because her mom lost hers? Maybe?

Amancay Nahuelpan has been dragged into the salt mines of the Big Two, as he’s drawing a Crush & Lobo series that, despite being written by Mariko Tamaki and drawn by Nahuelpan, won’t possibly sell at all and will only serve to give Nahuelpan a portfolio so that when they want him to draw Batman he’ll have a backlog of DC stuff. That being said, I might get the trade of this, but I won’t feel happy about it.

Garth Ennis and Liam Sharp are doing Batman: Reptilian. That is all.

Is this only the second Bat-story that Ennis has done (counting the Legends of the Dark Knight story from the mid/late ‘90s and not counting the Hitman related stories)?

Possibly? (Readers: Come for the terrible humor, stay for the vast comics knowledge of your two hosts!)

It’s Black Label, so let’s hope for the return of the Batpole!

Man, I love the idea of Checkmate, so the fact that Bendis and Alex Maleev are doing a Checkmate series should make me happy … but the line-up seems kind of weak, except for Director Bones and the Question, I guess. We shall see.

Yeah, I guess it ties into the other Event Leviathan stuff that Bendis did.  I liked what I read of his Superman run, but I didn’t get to the Event Leviathan stuff per se, just the stuff that laid the groundwork for it.

James Tynion played ball with DC and wrote Batman for them, and so they’re letting him do a horror book, The Nice House on the Lake, with art by Alvaro Bueno. It’s about a bunch of people who get invited to a secluded house by a weird dude they all know … dang, that doesn’t sound familiar at all! I’ve started to trust Tynion, however, so in two years when this is done (it’s 12 issues, and these Black Label books seem to take their sweet time coming out), I’ll get a nice collected edition!

I know you’re referring to a specific work with your “doesn’t sound familiar” bit, but I’m blanking on what you’re referring to.  Or is this really close to Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None/Ten Little Indians”?

Honestly, I’m not referring to any specific story, just that this kind of set-up is so very familiar!

Ram V and Kyle Hotz are doing the Catwoman Annual 2021 #1 (will there be a second annual this year?), which is about a serial killer tied to the Order of St. Dumas (which, yes, I know ties into the regular series, but it sounds like this is very standalone). I’m weirdly interested!

I don’t know why it’s termed an “unexpected connection” between Jean-Paul “Azrael” Valley and Father Valley the killer, but I guess I know how names work?  And in looking up Azrael to double check this, I found out that Milligan was a co-creator on the character, which I hadn’t known before.

It’s a mystery!

Wonder Woman: Black & Gold is a new anthology series, and you know I love me some anthology series! John Arcudi and Ryan Sook, Becky Cloonan, Amy Reeder, Ming Doyle … that’s not a bad line-up.

Yeah, between this, the latest Batman B&W, and the new Superman Red and Blue, there are going to be some nice looking trades on my shelves around the end of the year or so!

Batman #109 costs six (6) dollars. For what is, I assume, a 22-page main story and a 8-page back-up story. Let that sink in a bit.

Same thing is happening with the new Joker series, although from what I heard, it’s already happening on that book.

Damn it, DC! Gene Luan Yang is writing Batman/Superman #19, which is good enough, but it’s features different realities, drawn by Emanuela Lupacchino, Steve Lieber, Darick Robertson, and Kyle Hotz. Damn it, DC!!!!

Yeah, that arc is one I’m going to be getting the trade of down the line.

Damn it, DC!!!!!

Justice League #62 solicit: “… a last page so shocking that it will have fans of Naomi screaming!” Poor Trevor.

More like Poor Bendis.  Oooh …

Batman: The Dark Prince Charming gets a collection, which is nice. It’s been a while since this came out, but it looked nifty. I don’t know if the story is any good, but when has that stopped me in the past?

I don’t get what they mean in the Sweet Tooth Compendium solicit when they call it a “story-only collection”.  I read the trades and I don’t remember anything all that special that was extra.  I think there was a “previously in Sweet Tooth” page in each trade (which is usually welcome, because even when you read these things very close to each other, sometimes you miss a detail that was actually important), but that was it.  And why didn’t they just wait and include the new 6 issue mini in here as well, ffs?

Don’t try to dazzle DC with your logic, sir!

Nobody should buy The New 52: 10th Anniversary Deluxe Edition HC, and if they want to, they should skim my controversial post reviewing every single #1 issue of that ill-fated initiative, because that’s just a good time (the comments are particularly spectacular). I’m just pointing out that the New 52 was a decade ago. Dang, tempus fucking fugit, don’t it?

Yeah, I just recently realized that one myself.  I actually bought and read all the zero issues a year later, but never got that column completed. Maybe I can excavate that stuff and take a look at it.  Also, what’s the point of reprinting just some of the #1s and not all?  Own your mistakes, DC!

That would mean you’d have to (gasp!) read some comics! Don’t do it, sir! Don’t be a crazy person!

DC should pay readers to get this!

Let’s hit the back of the book!

In a world of reboots, why not Space Pirate Captain Harlock on page 233 from Ablaze? I have some (all?) of the original story, but I have been Pelkieing it, so I might get this to add to the pile. We shall see!

Well, on pages 426 and 427, Seven Seas is offering 4 different volumes of the original, so if you’re missing some, you can grab it.

Page  238 has Aardvark-Vanaheim’s offerings, which include the third Swords of Cerebus in Hell? Volume, already, as well as the latest one shot, Strangers in Cerebus.

Action Lab might not be offering much anymore, but they do have The S Factor on page 240, which sounds fun – an ex-sidekick goes on a “Bachelor”-esque show, and his “Batman” wonders what he’s up to. Sounds nifty. I wonder how many issues it is.

Sounds cool, and the art looks good.

That’s a terrific cover

Peter Milligan and Inaki Miranda have Out Of Body on page 242 from AfterShock, about a dude using astral projection to find out who tried to kill him. And there are demons. Come on, it’s Milligan doing Milligan – how can you not love it?

I’m going to get Bunny Mask in trade, because it’s by Paul Tobin, who writes well, and Andrea Mutti, who draws well. The solicit cracks me up, though: “Sealed in a cave before the dawn of man, released by a crazed madman, Bunny Mask walks our world once more.” Bwah-ha-ha-ha!!!! So who sealed it in a cave if a human didn’t? Was it an accidental sealing in a cave? I want there to be a brief scene where monocled and vest-clad dinosaurs are solemnly sealing it in a cave, all while speaking in huffy Victorian language, and then one them looks up and says, “I say, chaps, what’s that bright light in the sky?” And then the name is awesome. “Oh, no, that crazed madman released … Bunny Mask!!!!! Run for your lives!!!!” “What the hell? Bunny Mask? Who the hell is scared of — Argghh! Gasp!!! Choke!!!! Kkkkkkkk …” Do they call Bunny Mask “Tim”? This is gonzo and I love it.

I can’t add anything to that, but yes, all of that would be awesome.

That’s a nice, horrifying cover, and IT STILL MAKES ME CHUCKLE!!!!!

Now, I’m not saying I’m NOT going to get Seven Swords (page 246), which comes to us from screenwriter Evan Daugherty and is therefore most likely his attempt to backdoor his way into writing a movie, but I can still point out the idiocy of it, right? D’Artagnan, of Three Musketeers fame, IS IN A FATHERFELLATING TEAM-UP WITH CAPTAIN BLOOD, DON JUAN, AND CYRANO DE BERGERAC, to name a few. That’s so breathtakingly stupid I think it might be genius.

On page 252, we get two trades I’ve been looking forward to. Sympathy For No Devils is by Brandon Thomas and Lee Ferguson, two very good creators, about a murdered monster and the last human in the world who is trying to figure out whodunnit. Kaiju Score is about a heist in the middle of a kaiju attack, which sounds is a superb idea and I hope the book lives up to it!

Yeah, they both sound good.

Antarctic is always a bit sketchy about getting the trades I order from them out in a reasonable amount of time, but I am keen on Horror Comics: Black and White on page 261, which collects the anthology series. Come on, Antarctic, get things in the mail! Or … are they shipping these from the actual Antarctic, and the Argentinian customs officers are holding things up? The mind reels!!!!

They seem to have all sorts of problems with regular shipping in general, but they usually do good enough comics that as long as you know it’s coming (late), you can plan for it.  Although I do like your actual Antarctic idea.  There’s also a one shot sequel to Teether called A Long and Lonesome Road, and if I’d read the trade yet, I could decide if I want to get this.

That’s a little annoying, actually. Do an entire mini-series, so I don’t have to buy a single issue!!!!

Rob Liefeld is doing The Shield on page 263 from Archie. Because of course he is. And I see we’ve reached a point in history where he can be called “Legendary Comic Creator Rob Liefeld.” Good for him!

Liefeld isn’t the first person I’d go to to reboot the Archie superheroes, but that’s an interesting choice.  Since he’s got nothing better to do than wonder how he lost the rights to Youngblood and to sign Deadpool comics he didn’t necessarily draw, why not do this?  I guess Archie wasn’t one that sued him in re: Fighting American, huh?

Maybe they did, but they’ve all moved on!

Well, that’s definitely Liefeld

Over on page 275 is Warlash: Cold Metal Mayhem, a one shot from Asylum Press, and one story has Steve Mannion art, so it might be worth a look.

I didn’t realize that was new; I’ll probably take a look.

Atlantic Monthly Press has Resistance, which sounds neat. A journalist at an outdoor music festival that turns into ground zero for an epidemic investigates, and bad things happen. As they, you know, do.

I’m curious about E-Ratic from AWA on page 278, but also a little leery. On the one hand, Kaare Andrews is a terrific artist. On the other hand, Kaare Andrews the writer thought radioactive sperm was a good idea, and I CAN’T LET IT GO!!!! I’ll probably get this anyway, and it’s only 10 bucks!

I still haven’t read my Tillie Walden book that I bought almost two years ago (I can Pelkie with the best of them!), but it looks keen, so I might get Alone in Space from Avery Hill on page 280, which collects some of her early stuff. It’s 33 dollars, but it’s a big chunk of comics!

Hey, I DID read On A Sunbeam, and it was quite good!

I’m not sure why Amigo is on page 281 (are they working with Behemoth?), but they’re offering a Nancy in Hell trade, which they say is volume 1, but I’m not sure if that actually reprints the earliest stuff of that series, or just the earliest that Amigo has released (since I think the early stuff was out from Image).

It appears that they are now under Behemoth, so if it works for Torres, great. Remember, too, that he was working in Spain for some time, so maybe this is the Spanish stuff translated? I don’t know if Torres wrote any of it before he started doing English comics.

Black Mask has Everfrost (page 282), a sci-fi book by Ryan K. Lindsey and Sami Kivelä, who have worked well together before. It’s a story about a woman trying to get off a dying planet and finding out that things aren’t going to be easy. Black Mask is notoriously bad about getting things out on time, so I’ll wait for the trade, which might take quite a while.

He should sue the person who installed that tail

On page 289, from Cat-Head Comix, is 1956 volume 1: Sweet Sweet Little Ramona, by Steve Lafler, of Bughouse and Dog Boy Comix.  Somewhere I have some Dog Boy Comix, and I have the Top Shelf versions of Bughouse, and he’s got a neat cartoony style.  And on his own website, it seems his old and new stuff is being (re)released this year, so good for him!  This new series, 1956, is presumably about that year, and this volume is about Ramona, a trans woman aspiring to a modeling career, which means that given the time period, this is probably going to be a tragic book.  But maybe not?

I’ll probably pick that up, but as above with the Muslim woman in the 1200s, I wonder about the attitudes and terminology that will be used in this, because it would have been much, MUCH different back then than it is today.

I would think Lafler would be cognizant of this, but in a way, more recent attitudes and terminology might be harder to get right than in a work set longer ago.  With something olde-timey, you might get away with calling it “a matter of translation,” so to speak.

Drawn & Quarterly vexes me, because they occasionally have things that sound kind of neat, but their solicitations are dumb and pretentious and make me not want to get their stuff. Night Bus, on page 294, sounds cool and creepy from what I can gather, but the solicit is drowned in annoying shit. “Nature infringes upon the man-made world via gigantism and explosive abundance — the images in Night Bus are often unsettling, not aimed to horrify, but to upset the balance of modern life.” JEEBUS, WE GET IT, YOU SIT AROUND PLAYING THE BONGOES AND SNAPPING YOUR APPROVAL!!!! You made me Google this to see more, and that’s time I could have spent thinking of ways to insult Travis!!!!

It’s not their fault if you can’t multitask.  But don’t you realize, if they don’t pile on the pretension, they have to admit they’re just trying to sell you comic books?!

Comic books are the highest form of art, though, so they shouldn’t be ashamed!!!!

It’s Not What You Thought It Would Be is a “slice-of-life” story about two women growing up and finding out, well, that it’s not … something, I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it’ll come to me! It sounds decent enough, so I might get it. You can find it on page 300 from Fantagraphics.

A Jacques Tardi book is always cause for celebration, and Farewell, Brindavoine on the same page gives us that cause! It’s about a French dude having a wacky adventures with assassins chasing him (those crazy French!) in 1914. I’m glad nothing important happened in that year to distract us from the wackiness! I love Tardi and I want to encourage more translations of his stuff, so I will be getting this.

That does sound fun.

Editions Tanibis has Dope Rider on page 302, which is a Paul Kirchner book from the Seventies that has been … continued? I’m not sure if this is the original stuff with more added or simply original stuff. I like Kirchner’s work well enough, so I’ll think about this.

The cover art looks better than I realized his stuff was.  He’s had an interesting career, according to his wikipedia page.  I think I’ve been confusing him with Paul Krassner, though, the counterculture guy behind The Realist magazine, among other things.

On page 305 from Floating World is a new Steve Aylett book, whose work I’ve bought before based on Alan Moore blurbs, and this new one is a three issue mini called Hyperthick.  It sounds wacky?

Take a stand, Travis! IT SOUNDS HELLA WACKY, AND GODDESS BLESS IT FOR THAT!!!!!

Maybe skip the meringue?

Ron Marz is writing Swamp God from Heavy Metal on page 314. Heavy Metal is even more notorious about not getting shit out, so we’ll see, but this is about Confederate soldiers at the end of the war calling something up to help them. Things, as you might expect, do not go well. I’ll get this if a trade is ever offered!

Heavy Metal is doing a weird thing where the magazine has the features first, then these series come out, then supposedly these series will get collected in trade.  At least that’s what we’re assuming, anyway.  The new regime at HM hasn’t been around long enough to get a trade of anything out, and I’m wary of how things have been going with HM overall.  The GMozz/Gerhard Smile of the Absent Cat story apparently is tied up in litigation and won’t be finished, last I heard, for instance.

Well, damn. Why litigation? What the crap happened there?

I’m not entirely sure.  Something to do with the new ownership, maybe?

Kokila has an interesting one on page 324 with The Legend of Auntie Po, a reimagining of Paul Bunyan through the eyes of a 13 year old Chinese immigrant worker girl in a logging camp in Sierra Nevada, 1885.  Sounds like a neat mix of history and fantasy.

Yeah, I saw that. I will probably get it.

On the same page from Lev Gleason/New Friday is the trade of Minerva’s Map: The Key to a Perfect Apocalypse, which sounded like a fun adventure, with the title heroine searching for otherworldly artifacts for a mysterious organization.

I saw that out of the corner of my eye and passed on. Now that I read the solicit, it still sounds like a generic adventure, but I do like me some globe-hopping action, so I’ll have to think about it.

On page 326, Terminal Punks from Mad Cave sounds fun. A punk band has to fight monsters in the airport they’re passing through on their way to their first big show. Can’t they just yell “Oi!” at the monsters to make them go away?

We thought that would stop the Nazi punks, but it didn’t, so they probably didn’t do that to monsters.  This sounds like a fun book.

Travis thinks this casual disregard for life is ‘fun’ because he’s a sicko!!!!! T: This checks out!

Page 330 has, from New York Review Comics, It’s Life as I See It: Black Cartoonists in Chicago, 1940-1980.  There are some good and well-known creators here, like Jackie Ormes and Grass Green, the fanzine artist, and it’s a good way to fill in historical gaps.  I’m not liking the Comics Sans font on the cover, though.

YOU WILL LOVE COMICS SANS WITH ALL YOUR HEART!!!!!

Oni has a couple of possibilities (although I’m not sure when they basically turned into a YA publisher), with Choose Your Own Adventure: Eighth Grade Witch on page 336, which makes those of us of a certain age tingle with delight, and on page 342 is Jonna and the Unpossible Monsters volume 1 by the Samnee family.  I assume that the first 4 issues are included here?

Oni has been shifting that way for years. Maybe they just decided to go whole hog? And I assume that it’s the first four issues. The number of pages makes sense.

PS Artbooks has a neat one on page 347 with Roy Thomas Presents Briefer Frankenstein Softee TP 1, collecting about 30 issues worth of comics for a decent price.  The solicit also passes along the idea that the monster being called Frankenstein comes from this comic, which seems … questionable, at least?  I’d like to see more evidence, at least.

I can’t believe you would question a solicit in Previews. I mean, really.

Rebellion/2000AD has Black Beth and the Devils of Al-Kadesh on page 349, which is drawn by DaNi, who’s quite good, and it sounds like a typical but fun sword-and-sorcery epic. I’ll have to think about it.

The deadly … BETH!

With her nail polish of … DOOM!!!!!

All she wanted was lobster for dinner!

Scout has a trade of Yasmeen on page 351, which is about a teenager who was held by ISIS for two years and is now trying to adjust to a “normal” life in the States. Sounds interesting.

I read the first issue, and it was quite compelling. I think I still need to find the last issue somewhere.  Also from Scout on the same page is Murder Hobo Big Floppy Edition, collecting a couple one shots about a murder hobo in a fantasy world.  I was looking for Chaos Agent that’s listed in the customer order form as being on page 350, but it’s no longer on the digital catalog, nor is there any listing on the Scout website beside a picture of a cover (?) that looks pretty good.  I also saw that Scout has a subscription box each month on their website, so that’s a cool idea, since I do like a lot of their stuff.  And from Scoot, the kids comics imprint, on page 352 is Claire and the Dragons, about a young girl being trained by the town weirdo to take over as the resident dragon slayer.  Could be fun.

There’s more by Stefano Cardoselli on page 352, as he draws The Ballad of the Broken Heart from Second Sight Publishing, which is about a dude who wants revenge for his wife’s death. Cardoselli draws ultra-violence better than almost anyone working today, and his comics are always fun.

I might have to check this out.

Oh lord no, on page 353 from Smart Pop is The Con-A-Sutra: An Adult Guide to Full-Frontal Nerdity, a sex guide for nerds, and nobody needs that.  It’s drawn by JK Woodward, who’s actually putting their name to this, and written by Professor Balls XXXavier, obviously his birth name.

I saw that and felt it didn’t need the publicity. You don’t need to mention everything, sir!!!!!

BUT SOME THINGS MUST BE MENTIONED!!!!

I’ve been waiting for a couple of trades that show up on page 354 from Source Point Press. The Fuhrer and the Tramp is about Charlie Chaplin going undercover in Nazi Germany (like you do), and Thompson Heller, Detective Interstellar is about a private investigator who solves cases in space. Both sound nifty!

I’ve been waiting on these trades too, because both of them sounded awesome.  I’m in!

Titan has Cutting Edge on page 365, the solicit of which is kind of vague. A group of people need to solve a mystery? BE MORE VAGUE, TITAN!!!! But Mario Alberti draws it, and he’s a good artist, so I’ll have to think about it.

Way to sell it, peeps!

Barbaric is from Vault on page 376, and I just wanted to point out that the main character is named Owen the Barbarian.

Steve Niles is writing a comic that tells the story behind Dio’s Holy Diver album cover. SOMETHING YOU NEVER KNEW YOU NEEDED IS COMING TO YOU, NERDS!!!!! I mean, Jeebus. This could lead to an entire cottage industry about comics telling the stories about album covers. WHY ARE THERE SO MANY SHAPES ON THE COVER OF GENESIS?!?!?!?!? This is on page 383 from Z2 Comics, and so help me God, I’ll probably get it.

I wanted to start naming off innocuous covers (The White Album, Weezer’s covers, etc) which would seemingly need no story, but then I thought “damn, somewhere Jim Steinman is dusting off his scripts for the Bat Out of Hell trilogy epic, and Z2 is going to publish it”.  So, y’know, there’s that.  Although a book of how that baby came to be swimming after that dollar on Nevermind might make for a good story …

I assume you saw that the baby recreated the album cover in 2016?

I did not see that.  Fuck, was that the 25th anniversary of the album?  Damn the years go by fast!

This should have become a trend!!!!

I’ve never read Fist of the North Star, but I probably will now that it’s getting a fancy hardcover version on page 401 from Viz. But wait … the hero’s name is “Ken”? I mean, that doesn’t really scan, does it? “Look out, villains, here comes … KEN!!!!!”

I think I knew that from years ago but it never quite hit me like that, of how… non-threatening that name is.  Heck, the first owner of my favorite comic shop was named Ken!  And of course the only major pop culture figure I can think of with the same name is Barbie’s dude.  It’s like how all the villains in MST3K movies were named “Paul” for a while.  It’s not all that scary to hear “leave us alone, PAUL!”

May I recommend on page 434 from Graphitti Designs the trade of Billy The Sink’s masterpiece Stray Toasters?  I may, and I just did.  I got an edition from Image, I think, and it’s pretty damn out there stuff, but awesome, Sink at the height of his Sink-y-ness.  This supposedly has a new cover, but it might just be a resolicit and not a new solicit.  I’m not sure.

I know Travis usually checks out the flip side because he’s just that weird, but the Apocalypse statue on page M16 is awesome. He looks like he’s hosting a celebrity roast or something. “Hey, howyadoin’, good, good, yeah, the steak is great, tip your waitress, and can you believe Gambit had sex with a snake during a voodoo ceremony? I mean, really!” I am so tempted to pick this sucker up.

Wow, yeah, that is something.  I might have missed that since I’ve been working digitally and not off the book itself, but that is (chef’s kiss).

‘Hey, so how many of you had to pit mutants against each other in a evolutionary death-match on your way here tonight? This guy knows what I’m talking about, am I right?’

I’m digging the Devo Funko Pops on M-59.  Are we not men?  WE ARE DEVO!!!  I should check myself and not order so many POPs, though, or they’ll take over the house!

Those are sweet, though.

Okay, everyone, that’s it for us. We’re a little sooner than last month, but this time it’s definitely Travis’s fault, as I was done with my part a week ago. He’s been too busy maintaining his luxurious beard to care about you, the readers!

It’s a lot of beard.

16 Comments

  1. tomfitz1

    Distinguished Gentlemen:

    Not that I have anything against Tommy Lee Edwards (he does awesome stuff), but I thought Frank Quitely was doing the art for Jupiter’s Legacy: Requim?

    Wasn’t the whole point of taking a few years gap from the last volume was to give Quitely time to work on the interior so that the new volume could ship on time?

    Anyway, how is it that Marvel and DC solicits are showing up in Previews when both companies has parted with DIAMOND and you gents are talking about both under the Flippin’ Through Previews?

    Wouldn’t you guys have to separate them in different blogs?

    1. Greg Burgas

      Tom: I hadn’t heard that. I just assumed Quitely had retired from interior work because he doesn’t need to do it.

      Technically Marvel hasn’t parted from Diamond yet. And no, we’re not doing separate posts – we have enough trouble getting this one out in a semblance of time!

      1. I didn’t realize Quitely had retired from interior work, so now I’m bummed. I do think what Tom’s saying about FQ doing the art on Jupiter whatever was the original plan, but damn, that was a number of years ago now, wasn’t it?

        I heard Marvel signed some other distribution deal but didn’t realize they’d be leaving Diamond. I guess 80 some years was a pretty good run for monthly comics….

        1. And damnit, we don’t bow to these corporations and do separate posts about what crap they’re going to put out. If necessary, we don’t need the quote marks around the word Previews in the titles of our posts, they’re previews of comics! And technically I’ve been using the online version for several months so I’m not really flipping through anything.

  2. fit2print

    It might just be the booze talking but the Batman/Fortnite/Mustard/Stuyvesant Fish/Grape Burpgas exchange may well be the high point of your longtime (pick one): (a) Pryor & Wilder (b) Tucker & Chan (c) Farley & Spade… ummm… (d) Randall & Klugman (?)… (e) __________ & _________ comedy duo routine.

    And I’m not even being the least bit sarcastic here… I laughed.

    Keep the. band together, gents. I dare say some of us read these posts as much (or more) for the banter than for the recommendations. Not that the recommendations aren’t welcome because heaven knows I have no desire to actually wade through a Previews doorstop myself…

    1. Greg Burgas

      fit2print: Thanks for the nice words. It’s good to know we’re not the only ones who find us mildly amusing!!!! We’ll keep doing this for as long as Travis wants to – eventually I’ll probably push him too far and he’ll hunt me down and smother me with his beard, but until then, we’ll keep doing it!

  3. Der

    About Fist of the North Star: I read it a long time ago and the series is bonkers. The full name of the protagonist is Kenshiro, so maybe that’s more threatening? on the other hand, maybe it doesn’t matter that he has a nontreathening name because if you are a villian you are already dead?

      1. Eric van Schaik

        Trust no one!!!

        You got that right.
        Dark Horse increased the Nexus Newspaper TPB with 50%. WTF !?!?!?!
        When it was sollicited the first time it cost $19,99. This time $ 29,99… 🙁
        Also this time the Artist Edition is nowhere to be seen. Very strange…

        1. Andrew Collins

          Or if you’re like me and supported the Kickstarter, our Nexus trades are already in the mail. Not sure why but it looks like Rude had to turn to Kickstarter before Dark Horse would proceed with soliciting them…

          According to the KS updates, the Artist edition is still coming out but much later than the basic trade because of problems at the printer side. The Rudes shared samples of the proofs they got back that showed the colors all jacked up. I think they said something about increasing the size dimensions of the book too.

          What’s also interesting to me is that Rude and Mike Baron seem to be having another one of their fallings out over the latest Nexus story. (This seems to happen every few years or so…) Last year, Baron also Kickstartered a novelization of the Gourmando story that he wrote and which is pretty good. Rude said he went alone on the comic version because he didn’t care for Baron’s story. It will be interesting to see where the book and comic differ from one another…

    1. That’s not pedantic, it’s just accurate. I also chose my own name, and I would resent it like hell if somebody came along and said it was a pseudonym. It’s my real name, I bought it and paid for it with real money in a real court of law 35 years ago, and the law says it’s my real name. Christopher Priest’s name has been his real name since 1993; that’s coming up on 28 years. At what point does it get accepted?

      Those of us who chose a new name usually have significant personal reasons for doing so, and names matter. That’s why it’s so offensive to “deadname” a transgender person. It denies and tries to invalidate their identity. Here’s the thing: it is every bit as offensive to deadname anyone who changes their name for any other reason.

      1. My apologies for not being more precise about Priest. I was going off of memory, and either forgot or didn’t know that he had officially and legally changed his name. I assumed something I shouldn’t have.

        He’s an interesting guy, based on what I’ve read about him just now, looking stuff up. He’s very important in the history of comics, but (possibly because of attributes he himself acknowledges) (and of course partly due to racism) he hasn’t been given his due over the years. Possibly the Black Panther movie and his run on that book will help secure his place in comics history better.

  4. Apparently the issue with Predator is that the original screenwriters have filed to take the property back, and now Disney is counter suing. I guess it’s similar to the Siegel and Shuster heirs and Superman, or the Kirby heirs and Marvel stuff, if I understand correctly (which seems nigh on impossible, really).

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.