Celebrating the Unpopular Arts

Flippin’ through ‘Previews’ – May 2021

It’s the 16th of May, and I’m just starting this. I was busy, and then I was waiting to see if Travis would start this post. He didn’t, so this is going to be later than even usual! Sorry about that! Blame Travis – it’s certainly not my fault for not starting it three weeks ago! But let’s get to things now. As always, I’m in blue, and Travis is in lazy black!

Hey, I didn’t start because I wasn’t finding the DC Connect, then I got my second vaccine.  While I do now have superpowers, and Joe Biden can read my thoughts, I picked a bad weekend for it, because Bill and Melinda decided to divorce, and increased the pain in the microchips they injected.  Then it was Mother’s Day, then taxes … this was a hard month for trying to be an adult!

That sounds like a lot of excuses for “laziness,” sir!

Nice of you to notice!

We are bad bloggers!


Emilia Clarke “writes” M.O.M.: Mother of Madness on page 42, with the help of actual writer Marguerite Bennett. It’s about a scientist who moonlights as a superhero at night, and is a single mother as well. I’m sure we’ll never have them confront the fact that she’s never going to get enough sleep! I’ll probably get this in trade, because why not?

It could be fun.  Wasn’t Faerber’s Firebirds a similar concept?  At least the single mother superhero bit.

In Faerber’s, both mother and daughter had superpowers? I think. But it’s not like the concept has been over-mined, so it’s fine.

Robert Kirkman is celebrating ten years of his Skybound imprint with five issues of Skybound X (pages 50-53), featuring a bunch of characters from the comics in new stories and a new Rick Grimes story. I mean, I’m not saying I’m not going to get this, but I do have to pick on Kirkman celebrating himself like this. It’s kind of fun.

Well, if it was just his stuff in here, I could see picking on it more.  But there are a lot of cool stories of other books in the Skybound imprint.  I might try to get this, because I do like Kirkman’s stuff, and Manifest Destiny is really good, even if I’m way behind on it.

I’m just having some fun, because it has been a good imprint. Can you name the first Skybound book?

Oooh … that’s a good question, and confusing, because looking it up, Skybound was used on some books in 2010, so this is the 11th anniversary, no?  I have my guess for the first Skybound book (by which I assume you mean “book that started as Skybound”, since obviously Kirkman’s books that predated that would start carrying that imprint as well), but I’ll let the audience guess.

You read him, readers! Without cheating (that is, using the internet), does anyone know what the first Skybound book was?

Kyle Higgins isn’t a bad writer, so I’ll probably take a look at Ordinary Gods on page 56, in which five gods are imprisoned as humans, cursed to reincarnate over and over and (presumably) forget who they are. One of them has to become a god again to save the universe, presumably (these kinds of stories always go huge, don’t they?). It looks decent enough.

Stalin wasn’t terribly ordinary, unfortunately

I’m probably going to get the trade of Bliss (page 69), which is about a dude who becomes a hitman for gods because he has a sick kid, or something. It sounds fine, but the solicit says that it’s an “examination of forgiveness and family that’s rarely seen in comics.” Man, bold words. I mean, a lot of comics are like that, but that really sets us up for disappointment, doesn’t it? Still, I’ll check it out.

Wasn’t this supposed to be in two trades before, with 4 issues each?  Did they solicit volume 1 with just 4 issues, or am I hallucinating.  It did sound interesting, anyway.

Don’t ask me to remember back that far, man!

Brandon Graham’s Rain Like Hammers is collected on page 70, and I’ll probably get it. I like some of Graham’s work and don’t like some of it, so we’ll have to see which this is!

I’m also torn on his stuff, plus there’s stuff about him personally that makes me usually choose some other creator’s work first.

Yeah, that too. Life was so much better without the internet letting us know how creepy these people are!

Maybe this time I’ll get the giant, complete collection of Scud: The Disposable Assassin (page 71). Maybe.

I’ll have to think about this too, because I’ve always heard good things about it, and Schrab went on to TV and film, apparently with the same sensibility, as he worked on the Sarah Silverman Program and Community.

Dark Horse:

Page 94 has Masters of the Universe: Revelation #1, the prequel to the new Netflix series.  I’ll have to tell my old pal who’s into MOTU about this.  Hey, for once in the last couple years, Dark Horse got a license (from DC) rather than lost one!

He-Man is stupid. Yeah, I said it.

I don’t disagree but I also was a big He-Man dork back in the day.  Did you know Mark Texeira (sp?) of Ghost Rider, etc, did some of the art on some of the mini comics that were included in the figures?

That wouldn’t surprise me at all. Texeira has been around a lot longer than I ever thought.

Mignola gettin’ coin where he can!

On pages 98-99 are YouNeek YouNiverse’s collaborations with DH, which includes Iyanu: Child of Wonder volume 1 and Malika Warrior Queen volume 1, which I’m not sure if it includes only the stuff from the original YouNeek printing of volume 1, or if includes their version of volume 2 as well?  What I’ve read of Malika was pretty interesting.

Volume 3 of Malika is out, so who knows what they’re reprinting here!

I can’t really justify getting the deluxe HC of Sin City volume 1 on page 100, but dang, that extra stuff sounds cool!

No, no it doesn’t. At least not $75 worth of cool. Control yourself, sir!

I will, but you’re right, it’s not $75 worth of cool.  Especially since the SC is also at full art size!

Shawn McManus is drawing a Hellboy story on page 102, which is nifty. McManus art is always fun to see!

Another Neil Gaiman story gets adapted, as on page 108 we find Chivalry, drawn by Colleen Doran. This is a story about an old woman who buys the Holy Grail at a second-hand store and what happens after that. I dig these adaptations of Gaiman’s short stories, and it’s always neat to see Doran’s art.

And that’s a fantastic short story, so it should be a great GN.

The last Evanier/Aragones/Yeates collaboration was Groo meeting Conan, so now they team up again on page 110 for Groo Meets Tarzan. Should be fun.

Yes, I need this.  Did I get the Groo/Conan book, and if not, why tf not?!

Fun stuff!

Page 113 has the trade of Fear Case, by Kindt and Jenkins, and it sounded really neat, so I’ll probably get this.

I have to actually read it, so I can’t comment on it yet!

Because I am a sucker for “historical” Dracula stories, I’m interested in Dracula: Son of the Dragon on page 116. It’s by Mark Sable and Salgood Sam, two good creators who seemed to vanish from comics some years back, so that’s neat, too.

That does sound good.  Also, I see what you did with “sucker for” and Dracula stories.

Dang, pun totally not intended. I’m even cleverer than I think I am!

Dead Dog’s Bite is in HC on page 118, and while it sounded good, I might search out the single issues, as the HC is a bit more than I’d like to spend.

I agree, but for a hardcover, that ain’t bad, because each issue was five (5!!!) dollars, so getting them in single issues will be 20 bones. The softcover will probably cost that much.

Ah, good point, thanks for the reminder.

On page 119, Magdalene Visaggio and Andrea Mutti have Cold Bodies in trade, a story about the victim of a horror-movie style slasher and how she deals with being a survivor when others are cashing in on the killings as the anniversary approaches. Visaggio is a bit overrated as a writer, but this sounds interesting.

Don’t ever walk through a mashed cherry pie!

If you have never read The Nocturnals, you should think about getting the big ol’ Omnibus on page 119. It’s a keen comic.

I think I got a collection from Brereton’s self-publishing imprint, but I don’t think it included all this, but I’m not sure.  That would be slightly annoying if I sort of recently got one version and a newer, better version is now out.  But what I’ve read of it is very good.


John Layman’s Bermuda is resolicited on page 132. It’s about an island in the Bermuda Triangle, and it’s drawn by Nick Bradshaw, so it will look incredible. Layman recently posted on Facebook about this – the pandemic threw it out of whack, and then they wanted to give Bradshaw, who’s incredibly detailed in the best Art Adams way, time to finish it. Presumably all systems are go now!

I had ordered this back in the day, so I’ll have to get it again.  What was that other book Layman did at Image?  Back on… FCBD 2019, I think, I asked colorist Mike Garland about it and he said the artist (Pitarra?) had a sick kid or something, but I don’t think I’ve heard anything more about that book, which I think was about demons and stuff?  I was waiting for the trade like I do, and I’m still waiting!

That would be Leviathan, which doesn’t seem like it will ever be finished. Which sucks.

Dang.  Did any trade of that come out, or will I have to search out singles?

No trade, because not even all of the single issues ever came out. I’m not sure if issue #2 ever came out!

Damn!  I would’ve guessed there had been around 4-6 issues that had come out, not just 1!

Daaaaaangggggg …

Ballad for Sophie on page 135 sounds and looks neat. A journalist interviews a reclusive pianist about his life, and Secrets! Will! Be! Revealed! Who doesn’t love secrets being revealed? Nazis, that’s who, and of course this book has Nazis!

I could have sworn I got the first volume of Sophie Campbell’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles run, but there’s volume 3 on page 144, and I don’t have volume 1 yet. I’ll have to check that out, because it’s Sophie Campbell doing the Turtles – why wouldn’t I dig that?

Ballad for Sophie Campbell’s Turtles.

Dang. Stupid, but funny.

Let’s get back on track here!

Sea of Sorrows is in trade on page 146, and considering the last collaboration between Rich Douek and Alex Cormack was pretty keen, why wouldn’t I get this?

I’m going for this too.

On page 149 Usagi Yojimbo Origins volume 2, Wanderers Road, takes the original, Fantagraphics published B&W issues and publishes them in color.  I probably have these in B&W.


Marvel is letting Kaare Andrews go nuts in Amazing Fantasy (page 2), which is fine with me. Yes, there’s the possibility that we’ll get a story about Spider-Man’s sperm giving people cancer, but that’s the motherfucking chance you take when you let Kaare Andrews loose! I always love when Marvel and/or DC do something like this, as they basically admit that the old versions of their characters were better, but they still try to change them for a diverse readership that may or may not exist! Go, Marvel! (As usual, I have to add that I don’t care if Marvel wants to diversify their line-up – I’m just not sure that black teenage girls are really reading Marvel comics, you know? If they are, fine, but I suspect Marvel and DC don’t know that, either.)

Well, it sounds like even though these are iconic versions of the characters, the story is less than a regular Marvel story.  And I understand what you’re saying about diversifying the lineup, but I guess I’d argue that if black teenage girls aren’t reading Marvel comics as they are now, there is a chance they’d read them with a more diverse group of characters.  And even though they’re pretty vocal, the ones that (supposedly) quit reading comics are low enough numbers that they are willing to lose them.

I’m not sure I understand what you’re saying. Are you saying the grumpy old white men who gripe about this aren’t reading comics anymore? I have only anecdotal evidence from the store I shop at, but that’s almost their entire clientele. There are a few women, a few minorities (dudes, mostly), and a rare kid, but most of the customers are grumpy old white men, and they buy a lot of comics. I don’t know if young, more diverse readers exist, but my point has always been that I doubt if Marvel (and DC), whose job it is to know, do either. Marvel shouldn’t drive away their solid base until they’re abso-tively positive that they can gain readers from other groups, because that seems suicidal. But what the hell do I know?

I get what you’re saying, but what I’m saying is that how many readers are they actually driving away?  This stuff is strong and addictive, and even when the big 2 “break the toys” or “[do things] to our childhoods”, there’s still a strong faction of readers who stick around.  Which is what I was trying to say, that there are readers who bitch about these new characters, but they don’t actually leave.  Even though we gripe and bitch, we tend not to quit completely, so I think Marvel and DC are fine with trying to experiment with attracting new readers, especially with characters that non-grumpy white men might identify with.  Hell, when the new Ms. Marvel came out, I identified more with that character and her behavior in that first issue than I have with most any other character in a long time, so as long as the stories are good, bring on new characters.  And if other grumpy old white guys can’t handle that, well, we’ll be dead before too long 😉

That said, I also doubt that Marvel or DC know how to market their comics in any way that would appeal to new readers.  They’re more likely to make moves to drive away us old grumpy guys.

Oh, I get it. Yeah, it does seem like the old guard will stick around no matter what, but I know that despite attrition happening slowly, it does happen. I just wish the marketing departments of Marvel and DC were smarter, because it doesn’t seem like it should be too hard.

That being said, this is a fucking awesome cover

So there’s a war between super-villains in Sinister War (page 4)? Why should Spidey care? Can’t he just sit back and let them kill each other, and then fight the leftovers? Seems logical, but I’m sure Nick Spencer will explain why that can’t happen!

Spidey doesn’t kill, nor does he let his villains kill themselves, even if it would make his life easier.  This is superhero ethics 101, sir!  I sure hope Mister Sinister shows up in this series, though!

Yeah, but he’s allowing people to kill each other all over the world at any given moment, right? Why are those villains necessarily “his”? If they come for him, sure, but if they’re over in the Bronx or – horrors! – New Jersey killing each other, so the fuck what?

Well, when they target your family, or try to marry your aunt, they’re your villains now and forever, dude.  And if you’re against killing like Spidey is, you can’t let them kill themselves or others.

Wait, there’s an X-Men #1 on pages 12-13? Didn’t we just reboot the X-Men, which was a reboot of something that just was rebooted a year or two before that? Jeebus, Marvel, what the fuck are you doing? Is there any plan? I mean, I guess this isn’t really a reboot, just a new title, but man, this is just stupid. And I like how we’re now calling Chick Wolverine “Wolverine” when Dude Wolverine remains a super-popular character. Jeebus. At least long-time readers like, I don’t know, the person who loves the X-Men and will defend the Outback Era to the motherfucking DEATH isn’t confused and utterly turned off by whatever the hell is happening to the X-Men these days. Good for you, Marvel!

I’m sorry for the vitriol. I just don’t know what the hell Marvel is doing. I don’t even care that Chick Wolverine is now “Wolverine” (even though I find it humorous that subtly, Marvel is pointing out – oh, the wordplay! – that she’s only worth two-thirds of Original Recipe Wolverine). I just don’t like the sprawling mess that this franchise has become. It’s utterly stupid. All right, I’m done.

Except to say that when Joey Q calls me up to save the X-Men, we’ll cancel every title but the main one. And the thing on Krakoa will be “Bobby Ewing in the shower”-ed away somehow. And I’m going to kill Gambit in every issue. DON’T THINK I WON’T!!!!

Ah, they fuck around with this shit all the time, I’ve become inured to it.

You know, your lack of outrage is very upsetting. YOU MUST BE OUTRAGED!!!!

Hey, it’s a new Moon Knight series on page 16. Good for him! Like most Moon Knight series, it will probably be pretty damned good (I would argue the percentage of good Moon Knight stories to total Moon Knight stories is higher than almost any Big Two character) and it will probably last less than 20 issues. But good for him!

So … many … lines …

The solicit for Runaways #37 on page 56 reads: ONE ISSUE UNTIL RUNAWAYS #100! I think someone at Marvel flunked math.

It’s way too easy to make swipes at the big two for their renumbering shit, sir!  I know you’re better than that!


On page 74, there’s a Captain Britain Omnibus for a cool $125. This has the Claremont stuff from the 1970s and the Dave Thorpe/Alan Moore/Jamie Delano/Alan Davis stuff from the 1980s, and it’s definitely worth a look. The Claremont stuff is fine, but the Alan Davis stuff (he drew it all and wrote some, too) is phenomenal. Plus, Doug Ramsey sees Psylocke naked and forms a completely unhealthy attachment for her! Good stuff!

I was thinking about this stuff recently, it seems.  I dunno why.  But yeah, I should get this for Beardy McGrumpypants.  Also, that seems more like a relatively unhealthy attachment, seeing a naked Psylocke, rather than a completely unhealthy one, no?  It’s not like they’re related or anything.  (Or are they, and I just don’t know my X lore enough?!)

I’m just saying that at this point, Doug was like 13 and Betsy was an adult, and the writers (Claremont, mostly) seemed to play it off as nothing. Sure, Doug is going to go nuts because he saw Betsy nekkid, but do they have to make it like an actual romance? Did any young lad of 11 or 12 fall in love with Heather Thomas over that poster?


Well, when she promises them love and laughs, yes.  Yes they did.  Also, Claremont’s kinks definitely spilled over into the X-stuff, and probably launched hundreds of thousands of “intriguing feelings” in the genitals of many a comics reader back in the day!


There’s a Red Sonja: Black, White, Red #1 on page 156, with a story by Kurt Busiek and Benjamin Dewey, which means it’s time for my obligatory reminder that, boy, Autumnlands by that team was pretty darned good, wasn’t it? I blame Travis for its demise. He claims he bought it, but I have my doubts!

I swear I did, and if I remember sometime, I’ll take a picture with the two trades.  Right now I’m not wearing a shirt, and nobody needs to see that!

Actual photo of Travis shirtless, which nobody wants to see it because we’d all be too jealous!!!!!

Boom! Studios:


I think it’s just a one shot, but I have liked what I’ve read of this.


Futhermuckin’ MOUSE GUARD!!!!!!

Dark Blood on page 202 has a terrible title, but sounds kind of neat. A black dude in 1955 Alabama apparently gains the power to … change history? I guess? It’s vague, but that’s what it seems like. Sounds nifty.

I think it’s a metaphorical “power to change history”, but yeah, it should be interesting.

“Metaphorical”? What the hell is that supposed to mean?!?!?!?

That he can’t change history like how Marty McFly could have started banging his mom, but that being a black dude in 1955 Alabama with powers is going to “change history”.

Ohhhhh, I get it. I’m often dim.

I’m not sure if BRZRKR will be any good, but Ted “Theodore” Logan is joined by Matt Kindt and Ron Garney, so it probably will be decent.  The trade of the first 4 issues is on page 215.

The dude at my comics store who buys almost everything HATED issue #1. He couldn’t stop hating it! For what that’s worth.

Damn.  That is a harsh criticism.  Now I must read it!


Check out the solicits here!

Grant Morrison is still writing for DC, as they turn up with Superman and The Authority. That’s … odd. And Manchester Black is in it. Um … yeah. I mean, it’s Morrison, so of course I’ll get it, but that’s just odd.

Yeah, of all of the things they could be doing, this is it?  I guess it’s just 4 issues, though.  Our pal Tom claimed in one of your posts that GMozz is writing at least two things for DC, so I wonder what the other thing is.

Hey, Static is back! Good for that!

Hey, Icon is back! Good for that!

Yeah, those do seem cool.  I did like the original runs, what I read of them, so I look forward to getting these trades eventually.

DC Horror Presents: The Conjuring: The Lover is a mouthful, and it’s a tie-in to the film series, which doesn’t seem like something DC does. Have they done this recently? Weird. Anyway, it’s horror stuff!

I don’t think they’ve done any movie tie-ins in ages.  It’s been video game crossovers, more.  I think you’ll probably be interested in the backup in the second issue, as Juan Ferreyra returns to DC to do art on a story.

At least they’re having some fun with the covers

There’s a Batman/Catwoman special written by Tom King and drawn by John Paul Leon, which I wonder is the final thing he drew. I do get annoyed that the Batman/Catwoman thing has been upgraded to an epic romance written in the stars, when for so long it was just a flirtation. But whatever. When I write Batman I’m bringing back Julie Madison!

I saw that after you posted about Leon’s death, and I wonder if he got a chance to finish this.  I don’t get the interest in the Batman/Catwoman thing either.  It’s a little bit of a case that I think our old pal T commented about before, where newer writers aren’t as good as older ones and make the subtext text.  Also, god forbid that neither of them conform to heteronormative norms and NOT end up in a straight marriage….

Mariko Tamaki and David Lapham are doing a Batman Secret Files: Huntress issue, and I might get it because Lapham drawing the Huntress would be cool as fuck. I like Tamaki’s writing well enough, but Lapham is really the draw.

Yeah, this should be neat, even though the power to see through victim’s eyes or whatever seems too supernatural for a Bat character.

Blue and Gold should be fun – Dan Jurgens, as I’ve often mentioned, is the tapioca pudding of comics, but he seems to care a bit more about his own creation, Booster Gold, and Ryan Sook is drawing it, so it will look super. I’ll get the trade!

Yeah, the only thing I’d say is that Sook might just be too good for it.  As long as he’s drawing something, though!

Fingers crossed for this one!

The solicit for Detective 1040 has a redacted name in the title of the night such-and-such character died, but the image of the cover does not redact a character’s name, so are we to believe that that character is the one that’s going to die?

If Guillem March can’t draw an issue of The Joker, I suppose getting Francesco Francavilla to draw it is pretty darned good. Of course, if DC really wants to hire Francavilla, there’s a perfectly good “Batman ’72” tease sitting out there …

Has Francavilla been doing much interior art lately?  Or covers, actually, as I don’t seem to recall seeing his name as often as I did a few years back.  Did he take a break from stuff, or have I just not been paying attention?

I’m not sure. He still seems to do covers occasionally, but maybe he’s been doing something top-secret … like Batman ’72! (I’m not holding my breath.)

Jamie McKelvie is drawing a story in Wonder Woman Black & Gold #2, which is hella cool. This is still looking like a groovy anthology.

Did I miss the first Absolute Fourth World by Kirby volume, because the second one is offered here, and that slipcover looks amazing.  The slipcover!  So you know the rest should look good!

We mentioned Christopher Priest last time, and here the Deathstroke Omnibus by Priest is offered, and I did hear good stuff about it, so I might consider this.

I’m going to pick up the trade of Gotham City Monsters, even though I’m still a bit unsure about Steve Orlando. He’s fine, but the real draw is Amancay Nahuelpan on art, because I dig him.

Sounds neat.

They offer the first (of two, presumably) volume of Starman Compendium here, but based on what they’ve done in the past with this title, they’ll never offer the second.  Hi-yo!

There’s a Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes Tabloid Edition which I’m tempted by. It’s only 80 pages for 40 bucks, but it’s Levitz and Grell, and I’ve read some of those, so I’m thinking about this because of the big format.

I do loves me some Legion, so I’m thinking about this too.

Love me some tabloid editions!

Man, I eventually will read Dark Nights Death Metal at the liberry or something, and I either don’t know or care about the groups on the forthcoming soundtrack version, but I gotta say I’m sorely tempted by those sweet ass flexidisc versions of the first 3 issues of that comic. Dang.

Let’s take a look at the back of the book!

Action Lab is back with a bunch of stuff on pages 231-232, so that’s probably a good thing.  The Argus trade is reoffered, and that one sounded interesting, where a dude had to fight Time with multiple versions of himself.

AfterShock has Beyond the Breach on page 234, which is about a young girl stuck in a weird dimension that’s invaded our own. It’s by Ed Brisson, who’s a pretty good writer, and Damien Couceiro, who’s a pretty good artist. So this should be … pretty good!

Brisson’s been pretty much Marvel only for a few years, hasn’t he?  Glad to see more indie/creator-owned stuff from him, as he is dang good.

AfterShock also has some intriguing trades on page 244. Miskatonic is about an FBI agent investigating some weird goings-on in a Lovecraftian locale, so that can’t be good, while Red Atlantis is an espionage thriller. Both sound up my alley!

On page 248, Ahoy has Black’s Myth (I’m not entirely sure why the pun is in the title), which is about a werewolf private investigator. Sounds fun.

It sounds like maybe it has to do with the silver bullets being made and the PI looking for where they’re coming from?  Of course I’m in on this one, as I have gotten all the Ahoy stuff, and they had a fun Zoom panel at Ithacon a few weeks back.

I … guess?

I’ve often said that I love Eric Powell’s art but do not really dig his writing, so if he’s just drawing something, I’m all over it, and he’s drawing but not writing Did You Hear What Eddie Gein Done? on page 248 from Albatross Funnybooks. The subject matter should be obvious, and I’m sure the book will be superb-looking, so I’ll pick this up.

There’s a Kickstarter for a special signed HC of this that should still be up by the time we post this (probably).  The preview pages look mighty purty.

On page 249 from Anyone Comics is Access Guide to the Black Comic Book Community 2020-2021, a directory of Black creators and stores and cons that are Black friendly, which is a cool thing.

American Mythology Productions on page 250 has Zorro: Flights 1, a new Zorro book written by Don McGregor.

I don’t know what an “oversized edition” of The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott looks like, by Avery Hill has it on page 261. It’s a hardcover for less than 20 bucks, and this was the best comic I read in 2020, so if you missed getting it, here it is!

I mean, Frank Cho writing and drawing a comic called Fight Girls (page 270 from AWA/Upshot) cracks me up, because does it really matter what it’s about (for the record, it’s a Wonder Woman origin story, basically)? I mean, it’s just so Cho can draw hot, scantily-clad women, and there’s nothing wrong with that!

They had preview pages in the AWA/Upshot preview books from over a year ago, and the pencils for this looked amazing, of course.

I’m sure there’s a variant cover with a woman with her butt in the air tittering about political correctness because Cho just Can’t. Leave. It. Alone.

Beehive Books on page 274 has Artemisia, a comic about a trailblazing female Baroque painter of the early 17th century. Sounds nifty.

Over on page 278, Black Panel Press has Illegal Cargo, which is about a Salvadoran man who apparently comes into the States illegally (I’m assuming, by the name) to help his daughter, who lives here. It might be keen.

I’ve enjoyed the collections of Tex comics I own, so Epicenter Comics has another one, Tex: The Magnificent Outlaw on page 296, about his younger days, and I’ll probably pick it up.

Fantaco has a Fantastic Giants Facsimile Edition on page 297, which collects some Gorgo and Konga comics drawn by Ditko. I own these, and they’re pretty fun comics, and I’m sure this edition, which is only 10 bucks, will look groovy.

Didn’t IDW do a collection of some of this stuff just a couple years ago?

Yeah, that’s when I got them. It wasn’t too long ago, but it wasn’t too recent, either.

Fantagraphics has some nifty stuff on pages 298-99. Alberto Breccia’s Dracula collects several wordless stories by Breccia, which I’m sure will look terrific. Another History of Art by Anita Kunz reimagines old masterpieces as if they were painted by women. And Martin Cendreda’s Hand of Black has several weird short stories, some which have never been published. Finally, Ed Piskor’s Red Room #3 is offered. I think Travis mentioned the first issue, and I may have pointed out that I like Piskor’s art but didn’t love his writing. My comics shop basically forced me to buy issue #1 (not really, but the guy kept a copy for me because he thought I might like it, even though I didn’t order it), and the art really is stunning, much better than I expected. I haven’t read it yet, but based solely on the art, this is a must-get.

I did mention Red Room 1, and I usually like when the shop guy keeps something aside he thinks I might like.  It shows that they’re paying attention to you, and obviously that’s all I want!  Also from Fanta is Queen of the Ring, a collection of female wrestler art by Xaime, and Visual Crime, a strange one from Jerry Moriarty, who actually lives in my area.  I should figure out if he ever does any appearances locally.

And that name on the Another History of Art book must be a pseudonym, no?  (Sound it out!)

I thought that too. You never know, though – I actually knew a girl in high school whose mother’s name (her married name, not her maiden name) was Anita Coxhead. Weird things happen with names occasionally!

True, but given the subject matter …

Gotta love those covers that will haunt yer damn nightmares!

Grand Central Publishing has Meadowlark: A Coming of Age Crime Story (page 305), which is another collaboration between Ethan Hawke and Greg Ruth. I still haven’t read their first book, Indeh (which is re-offered on the same page), but it’s gorgeous (of course; Ruth is a superb artist), so I’m going to get this one, and I promise I’ll read it this time!

Kudos to Ethan Hawke for doing another GN.  A lot of times it seems these famous people are brought in for a one time name recognition sales boost, but this seems like he’s actually interested in using the medium to tell stories.

Cullen Bunn and Cat Farris, two very good creators, have The Ghoul Next Door on page 306 from Harper Alley. It’s about an 11-year-old who lives in a haunted town, and it’s clearly a YA book, but I’m still very tempted!

Man, I hate supporting a weirdo like Dave Sim, but The Strange Death of Alex Raymond, which is offered on page 318 from Living the Line, is finally getting collected, and I’m torn. I saw a bit of this when Sim started it in glamourpuss, and it looks super, but Sim can’t draw anymore, and Carson Grubaugh has finished it. It sounds as if Sim won’t be getting any money from this, which might make it more palatable to pick up. I’ll have to think about it.

So, I doubt Dave won’t be getting any money from it, he’s done so much of the work, but then, it’s Dave, so he may have decided not to take any money from it because it’s not completely “his version” of this story.  From what I understand, last year he was intending to tour shops in California to test the market for the SDOAR book, and only ended up selling a couple hundred or less copies of the test market version of the “first volume” to us big time fans in lieu of actually touring shops in the Covid era (it’s weird that you only sell a few hundred copies of something that you don’t spend any time or money advertising!).  Because of this perceived “lack of interest”, Dave decided to abandon the book, but Carson, who had been doing the art for a good portion of the book, decided not to let it end like that, and finished up the book.  The Kickstarter for special signed and numbered copies and some neat add-ons just ended yesterday (as I write this), so I missed out on telling people about it.  Also, this book isn’t really “getting collected”.  As I understand it, there’s very little of the version of the story from glamourpuss that has survived — it was greatly re-written and re-drawn by Dave before his wrist injury has limited his drawing abilities, and Carson’s work is of course completely different.  I’m going to be curious as to how different the book as it’s published is from how Dave envisioned it, and it will kind of amuse me if the book does quite well once Dave is sort of taken off of it.  I mean, from what I understand, one of the big underlying themes of the book is that Gone With The Wind’s Margaret Mitchell … cursed? … Alex Raymond … because … and that’s why he died in an auto accident many years later.  I don’t know.

And since we’re talking about him, back on page 227 are Dave Sim and the Aardvark-Vanaheim listings, with The Unethical Spider-Vark, the latest of the Cerebus in Hell? one shots, as well as volume 4 of the Swords of Cerebus in Hell?, a trade collecting the one shot issues of the comic strip.  On Kickstarter is a different project, with the first 2 volumes of the Swords of Cerebus in Hell? books in HC in a small print run.  I might still pledge for these HCs, because the covers ape the look of the DC Archives, but the interiors have the same bad layout that I railed about when I first reviewed the book lo those many years ago.  I will at least pledge for the trading cards that ape the look and style of the Marvel trading cards in the early ‘90s, because fucking nostalgia, man!

Christopher Sebela, who’s a pretty good writer, has Pantomime on page 320 from Mad Cave, which is about a group of deaf student who decide to commit a crime, which has bad consequences. Who could have seen that coming?!?!?

On page 324 from Margaret K McElderry Books is The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor, a book where a woman who loves Gothic romances wakes up in a world that is apparently the pocket universe that protects our own.  From “penultimate evil”, but still, it sounds like it should be fun, as it’s written by Shaenon K Garrity and Christopher Baldwin, who I believe both did comic strips for MAD Magazine in the last few years, and they were quite funny.

It can’t be possible that whoever wrote that solicit doesn’t know what “penultimate” means, can it?

Well, yeah, that was what I meant by pointing it out, that it’s a word that many people don’t know what it means, and this solicit writer is one of them.

Oni is reprinting Underground, a nifty thriller set in a Kentucky cave (page 334). It’s by Jeff Parker and Steve Lieber, so you know it’s good!

I haven’t read it, so I’ll consider this.

The Fire Never Goes Out: A Memoir in Pictures, on page 344 from Quill Tree Books, is an autobiography-esque book by Noelle Stevenson, who’s super-talented, so I might have to get this despite my hesitancy about autobiographies. I live in hope!

I think I’ve heard about this one, and I would guess this is a better than average autobio.

Maybe you could see to put the fire out if you had some danged eyes!

Over on page 347-348 is the stuff from Scout, which looks like a good assortment.  In particular, I’m liking Gods of Brutality, where the singer of a metal band died for a minute and a half in the ‘80s, and prayed to any god to save him, and Thor and Hercules did.  Rawk!  And the trade of Shitshow has the story of a super powered dude who got his family destroyed and now works a circus, and the villain coming back to get him.

Gods of Brutality does sound fun.

On page 350 is American Cult from Silver Sprocket Press, which has a number of cartoonists, including Jim Rugg and Box Brown, telling stories of cults in America.  Might be cool.

I get waaaaay too angry at people who fall under the spell of cult leaders, so this might make me too mad.

From 350-352 is Source Point Press’s offerings, which include the trade of Damned, Cursed Children, which is about what the title says, I suppose, and Black of Heart, about a PI tracking down a serial killer in 1949 NYC.

I’ll probably get both of them, but I like the first one, because the moment you know children are evil, what’s the problem? You can always make more of them!

Damn, man, you cold!

I mean, they’re damned AND cursed, so fuck ’em – just break out the chainsaw and you’re good!

Storm King, John Carpenter’s boutique press, has a couple of interesting book by Steve Niles on pages 353-54. Sacred Hearts is about stupid kids who decide to wander near a place they were always warned to stay away from, because they’re stupid, and bad things happen. Black Sparrow is about a plague in the Old West unleashing demons and turning a good dude into a serial killer and what his father will do to save him. The first is drawn by Nat Jones, the second by Scott Hampton, so they should both look pretty good.

The good folks at TwoMorrows have Back Issue 130 on page 366, which features Bronze Age ads and promos, including a feature about who wrote the Hostess ads.  Sweet!

Back Issue seems to have disappeared, unless my store just isn’t getting it. I’ve been waiting for an issue – #128? – for a while now, but maybe I missed it. I suppose I could check the internet to see what happened to it, but that seems like a lot of work.

They do go through periods when they’re behind, I think, but just looking at the TwoMorrows site, it appears that 126 with the Flashes should be out, 127 with Sgt. Rock on the cover should be next week, and beyond that it looks about monthly.

On 367 from University Press of Mississippi is The Comics World: Comic Books, Graphic Novels, and Their Publics, which discusses how all the different people involved in producing and consuming comics work together.  And stuff.  Sounds kinda neat.

They didn’t ask my opinion, did they? Stupid Mississippians.

Okay, so this is insanely late, and while Travis doesn’t care about your feelings, I certainly do, and I apologize. I mean, I got vaccinated too, and the day after that, I was able to sit through the Snyder Cut without vomiting, so I don’t know what Travis’s problem was. He just doesn’t care, mannnnnn! Of course, a new catalog is out, so I hope to get started on that this weekend and maybe get it posted the first weekend in June? WE CAN DREAM, CAN’T WE?!?!?!? Have a nice day, everyone!


  1. tomfitz1

    The ballads of long-time bromance of Burgas and Travis as they sing off-key their complaints of comics continues on and on in an never-ending chorus where hairy and unshaven legs are kicked up high!!!

    Sing on MacDuffs!

  2. conrad1970

    It’s great that Moon Knigjtbis getting his own book again, but when I checked out that cover I thought it was the 90”s all over again with Stephen Platt.

    1. Greg Burgas


      McNiven isn’t usually that busy. I wonder if he was trying for the “Platt effect.” It would be weird if he were, but I wonder …

  3. Corrin Radd

    That Bermuda cover has sold me on it.

    I am definitely considering that Cap Britain book (funny I remember asking about finding some of those issues sometime within the last year, maybe, on this blog).

    And I’m very excited for the Noelle Stephenson book. I loved Nimona so much. The first issues of Lumberjanes are excellent. And the She-Ra cartoon—was cool but clearly not aimed at me ( I watched a few episodes with my kids).

    1. Greg Burgas

      Corrin: Yeah, I remember you asking about Captain Britain – it was when I listed my Top Ten runs and Cap Brit was on it. This is a big chunk of money, but it’s also a big chunk of comics, not much of it easily accessible, so there you go!

      I didn’t love Nimona as much as some, but I did like it, and Stevenson is a very good creator, so I’m also looking forward to this!

  4. Jeff Nettleton

    I liked Moon Knight a hell of a lot more before he got on the steroids. Yeesh!

    Scud was a great comic; haven’t looked at that in years!

    It’s probably just me, but a book called Fight Girls, from a company called AWA, sounds like it should feature Madusa Micelli, Candy Devine, Sherri Martel, and Wendy Richter. Which is more along the lines of that Queen of the Ring, from Xaime. Loved his Whoa Nellie!, especially his wrestling magazine pin-ups that bookended each issue. You can tell Xaime grew up with pro wrestling, before Vince McMahon homogenized it.

  5. Call Me Carlos the Dwarf

    Having read the rest…diverse legacy characters are future IP for MCU movies, which will make literally 1,000 times the profit than the best, most popular runs designed for old white dudes will manage over the time between the start of these R&D runs and the movie’s arrival.

    Also, worthless as I find Hickman’s X-Men, Logan sucks and Laura is awesome.

    1. Greg Burgas

      I get why they do it, but if the comics simply don’t exist anymore, they won’t have anything to do IPs in. I mean, they could just create new characters for the actual movies, couldn’t they? Last I checked, movies and comics were two different art forms. But my point is always that I’m not terribly sure Marvel and DC know what they’re doing. They’re throwing everything at the wall and hoping something sticks.

      I’ve barely read anything with Laura, so I can’t comment on her awesomeness. I just find it humorous that they want to promote her but she can’t stand on her own, so they call her Wolverine and give her the exact same costume as Logan. They don’t have a ton of confidence in her, it seems.

  6. Call Me Carlos the Dwarf

    The last interesting issue featuring Logan consisted of the Punisher shooting him in the balls and running over him with a steamroller.

  7. Damn. I have all the Captain Britain series except for the half-dozen tales before Moore takes over. At some point if I have a lot of spare cash I’ll go for the omnibus. And yes, Davis does a great job.

  8. Eric van Schaik

    I hope you step up next month guys.

    Greg, you should absolutely get Scud. My ex-wive’s girlfriend made a t-shirt of the # 3 cover. I wore it a lot at the time until the colors faded.

    Respect for still buying Marvel/DC comics guys. I stopped years ago and won’t even look at the solicitations anymore. Sometimes when Greg has a recommendation and have a peek at the TPB before purchasing.
    Back in the day indie books cost a dollar extra, but when I hear that some of the new books are now $ 4,99 I wonder how long it will take for people to say enough is enough.

    I had too look up Heather Thomas. Never heard of her before.

    I hope that Lapham will finally get to Stray Bullets. I get that bats brings in the money but still…

    Will Frank Cho ever finish Liberty Meadows?

    “Seeing the Snyder cut without vomiting…” priceless Greg! 🙂 Perfect start of the weekend.

  9. Edo Bosnar

    Groo meets Tarzan. Excellent.

    Nocturnals omnibus. *heavy sigh* The list of recent omnibuses I want but will probably never get keeps on growing…

    Speaking of which, there’s going to be yet another complete collection of Scud? Interesting. There’s already two previous ‘Whole Shebang’ editions – out of print, so the prices are pretty outrageous (at the higher end, they would seem to confirm Greg’s recent speculation on secondary market prices). Anyway, I’m still regretting the fact that I missed out on buying that book on a local comics auction site about two years ago for the equivalent of roughly $30. While I was waffling about it in my head, someone snatched it away.

  10. Peter

    Just going to add another voice to the chorus about “Scud” here. Such a great book and definitely worth grabbing. I remember that when I was reading it I was wondering “why is Rob Schrab letting this Dan Harmon guy write so many issues of his creation?” and of course Dan Harmon is now the much more famous of the two. The whole book does feature the Harmon-esque mixture of the zaniness and incredible bleakness, with an ultimately sincere core.

    1. HAHAHAHAHA! It worked! You are under our control!

      Actually, it’s great to hear that you regularly check out this column. I’ve been thinking about resurrecting the column that I first thought I stole from Chad but I later realized I stole from you 🙂

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