Celebrating the Unpopular Arts
Flippin’ through ‘Previews’ — September 2019

Flippin’ through ‘Previews’ — September 2019

It’s time for Previews 372, with all the comics in September (September? When did that happen?!) coming out in November or later (many times much later!).  It’s Travis starting things out and staying in black, and Greg will be along with something actually amusing (or telling me how I screwed up starting the post) and in blue.

I suppose I should start doing this – I feel like Travis, waiting so long to start on this! And I don’t care that you started it – whatever works, man!

So DC got rid of Vertigo, but not really, right?


Here are the solicits.

Family Tree on page 42 sounds weird and cool and worth getting.  Jeff Lemire is writing and Phil Hester is drawing (which is great to hear because I thought he had a health scare a few years back that might have prevented him from working) a story about an 8 year old girl turning into a tree, and her family trying to help cure her.  It sounds like a classic Vertigo book!

I hate when I turn into a tree.

When you turn into a tree, what kind of tree do you turn into?

I’d like to say a mighty oak, but it’s probably more like something wussy like a willow tree. Stupid willows!

As does Undiscovered Country on page 46, written by Scott Snyder and Charles Soule and drawn by Giuseppe Camuncoli and Daniele Orlandini.  It’s about a future where the US cut itself off from the rest of the world and now a team trying to cure a pandemic is entering the lost country.  Sounds weird but good, I’ll probably get the first trade.

I might get the trade, but this is one of those ideas that sounds semi-cool when you first hear it and dumber and dumber the more you think about it, so by the time the trade comes out, I may not be interested anymore.

That might be true.

Cool cover, though

Heart Attack on page 50 might be fine – gene therapy gives people superpowers, which the gubbermint don’t like – but it will look good, because Eric Zawadski is a good artist.

Killadelphia on page 54 sounds good, with a beat cop burying his father back in his hometown of Philly discovering vampires and shit.  Art by Jason Shawn Alexander looks cool too.

Man, I was on board with this until the final word of the solicit: “vampires.” WHY, SWEET JEEBUS, WHY?!?!?!? So I might check it out, but that lowered my enthusiasm for it.

Didn’t you encounter vampires in Philly all the time?

Yeah, but they were just Eagles fans who hadn’t been outside a dark bar for many hours.

Olympia on page 58 is another story about a superhero who comes to life in “the real world”, and it sounds ok.  I’ll probably get the trade of this mini.

But … it was conceived while the kid was undergoing cancer treatment! You’re a heartless bastard if you don’t buy multiple copies of issue #1!!!!!

No, it’s writer Curt Pires’s dad who was undergoing treatment, so I’m ok with not supporting this if it was an older dude.  I’m heartless in that way!

Oh, yeah, I read it wrong. Whoops. Yeah, who cares if it’s an old dude. Logan’s Run his ass!

I’m interested in La Voz de M.A.Y.O. on page 64, as it’s about a dude who worked to get federal recognition for the Pascua Yaqui tribe, which sounds neat. I don’t know if it’s a standalone book, but it’s listed as “volume 1,” which doesn’t necessarily mean there will be a volume 2. Oh well. Still, it sounds neat.

I hate when they do volume 1 and have no intention of doing a volume 2!


Section Zero is offered in softcover on page 66, which bodes well for the series as a whole, I hope!  I got my HC through the Kickstarter after I talked to Karl Kesel here at the Atomic Junk Shop, and I’m patiently awaiting the next book, 1959, from the creators!

I was waiting for the trade, so I’m glad it’s coming out!

Jeez, I don’t think I’ve ever jumped onto The Beauty (although I may have the first trade and don’t even remember!), but here it ends on page 76 with issue 31.  I’ve heard it was good!

The first arc was fine, but nothing special. I didn’t feel the need to continue with it.

Dark Horse:

The solicits are here.

Tommy Lee Edwards is doing the art on Hazel and Cha Cha Save Christmas: Tales from the Umbrella Academy (page 96), so I’ll probably have to get it, even though I imagine it will be collected at some point.

Of course they do!

I do need the first issue of Sherlock Frankenstein, so I might grab the Black Hammer 3 for $1 issue on page 97.  Also, I’m a sucker for cheap books!

Fax From Sarajevo is available in a new trade on page 111, and I highly recommend this book by Joe Kubert.  Despite getting him pissed off at me in Boston back in 2011 (whistles innocently).

I have to check if I have this. I don’t think I do, which means I’ll be ordering this!

Hmm, I might pick up The Witcher omnibus TP on page 115, because I did want the mini that Piotr Kowalski did the art for, and Paul Tobin writes the whole thing, and he’s good.  I think it’s 3 5-issue minis and a one shot, so 16 issues for 25 bucks ain’t a bad deal!

They’re pretty good. I think I have the first three, maybe?, and they’re enjoyable comics. Nothing life-changing, but pretty good.

Ooh, I always liked the What’s Michael? stories in Super Manga Blast, and now there’s a big Fatcat collection on page 118 of the first 6 volumes.  It’s about a cat who has some crazy fantasies sometimes, and it’s really funny stuff from what I remember.


Check out the full solicits here.

Woohoo!  New DC labels!  I’ve been waiting for this!!! (/sarcasm)

The problem with Black Label, as we’ve seen, is that DC freaks out over “adult” content. Why have a “Black Label” line and not have Bat-Dick, for instance? (As much as I thought Bat-Dick was stupid, it was in a “mature audiences” book, so kids shouldn’t have seen it!!!!) Until they have Lois Lane topless in a “Black Label” Superman book (again, not that I want that, but if you’re going to have one, use it, as a letter-writer wrote years ago when DC first started using a “Mature Audiences” label), I’m not buying these listings. (/soapbox)

It sounded like what happened was that the comics side was all for the mature label stuff, but the higher ups got cold feet.  Oops!

Page 1 has Batman: White Knight Presents Von Freeze, a one shot written by Sean Murphy, who’s doing the regular White Knight stuff, which was interesting if not fantastic, and art is by Klaus Janson, who makes everything good, and whose art on the second part of “Gothic” still creeps me out thinking about it!  I’ll read this when this second White Knight series gets collected.

Really? You’re still hung up on “Gothic”? Let it go, man!

It was creepy and I was young when I first read it, the age of the kids in the spookiest sequence!

At least Mike Carey acknowledges the similarities of his new The Dollhouse Family on page 3 to Locke and Key …

Yay! Another Mike Carey comic I can ignore! (I’m actually sad I don’t like his comics. He seems like a perfectly fine gentleman and his comics, theoretically, should intrigue me, but they just never do. Heavy sigh.)

People are all freaked out by clowns, but they should really be freaked out by dollhouses!!!!!

I’ve read a little of N.K. Jemisin’s stuff, so I’m cautiously optimistic that this new Young Animal book Far Sector on page 5 will be an interesting take on Green Lanterns.  Plus, what I’ve seen of Jamal Campbell’s art in general seems pretty good.

Yeah, this seems cool. I’ll definitely check it out.

Wait, how are they going to do new Crisis on Infinite Earths stories in the 100 page giant on page 7?  Are they reprinting the original series in that?  That’d be neat, I suppose, although I’d feel compelled to buy something I already own just to get the new stuff.  Argh!  They’re also doing a DC War giant as well, and I’m in for that!

Beats me. I’m really glad they have a good solicit to explain it all!

Well, now, don’t be ridiculous.

So that’s good timing on Far Sector with Green Lantern: Blackstars on page 8, the continuation of GMozz’s run on the book.  I’ve wanted to read his stuff for GL but I don’t think there are any trades yet.

You should have bought the single issues, because you don’t want to disappoint The God Of All Comics!!!!!

I like how Starro looks like he just wants to take a quick nap, and that Dominator is just standing there in the back, chillin’

The new Hellblazer series is on page 11, and I’m cautiously optimistic because Si Spurrier and Aaron Campbell seem like a good team.  Will John still be aging sort of in real time, as he seemed to do in the original series?

Probably not, but you never know!

The Infected: Scarab (take out the “ra” for fun!) on page 13 is written by Dennis Hopeless, which means that DC didn’t get the memo on his name “change” (in quotes because I think Hallum is his real name).  Also, Vertigo did a series called Scarab many years ago, and it was decent, from what I recall.  I never got the last issue of it, though!

I only got the first issue. I wonder why I never bought the rest. For some reason, though, I always remember that Scot Eaton did the art. Weird, what sticks in your memory.

Wow, really?  I just looked at some Aquaman that he recently did.  Weird!  I know the writer was John Smith, and that was his real name!

I think it’s a smart idea to have Jon Kent be the new Superboy who joins the Legion of Super-Heroes, so I’m hoping this will be a decent comic on page 15.  I don’t mind what I’ve read of Bendis’s Superman so far, and of course Ryan Sook is awesome, and might even get 3 issues done before he has to take a break.  I am wary of the changes DC seems to be making already, as I understand that they adjusted some promo art and changed the look of a few characters when the book should have been done by that point.

I’m cautiously optimistic about the new Question mini on page 16, with art by Cowan and Billy the Sink, and written by Lemire. Plus it sounds neat spanning different eras.  I look forward to the trade!

Yeah, it should be fine. Just another example of DC rolling back the clock, though. Too bad.

You mean with having Cowan, who did the art on the old series, doing the art here?

No, with bringing back Vic Sage when Renee Montoya was a perfectly good Question. I dig me some Cowan art!

Ah, I see.  I’m not sure which Question was in the recent Event Leviathan series, though.

And another Green Lantern on page 21, in GL: Legacy, about a new kid who inherits his grandmother’s GL ring and fights bullies.  It sounds pretty good, and what I’ve read of the GNs for kids, it probably will be.

Page 66 has a couple of good ones.  I’ve never read Black Orchid, by Gaiman and McKean (or “Blackhawk Kid”, as Jenette Kahn apparently heard Gaiman say when they met), so I’m tempted by that, and the Blackhawk: Blood and Iron HC collects a mini by Chaykin as well as the Action Comics Weekly stories.  Since I have those issues, I don’t really need this HC, especially at this price.  WTH, are the Blackhawks going to be in a TV show or movie?

I’m getting the Blackhawk book, because I’ve heard good things about it over the years. Maybe DC just thought it was time for a trade?

It gets the thumbs-up from the typical Chaykin stand-in!

Female Furies gets a trade on page 68. I guess the controversy died down when people actually read the book, or maybe everyone who was offended by it stopped reading.

I’ve already forgotten the controversy!

Something about rape, I think? I don’t know, I didn’t pay that much attention, but people were fired up!

Oh, here’s the first trade of The Green Lantern on page 68.  Thanks!

Oh my my, on page 72, we get Famous First Edition: New Fun 1 in HC, reprinting the first DC comic, which surprisingly has never been reprinted before.  So I may spring for this 20 dollar HC!

I might get it, too. I do hope they leave the racist Western strip on the front cover!

They cancel the Detective collection but solicit this? Makes perfect sense!

Ooh, that Swamp Thing Bronze Age TP 2 is tempting even though I didn’t get volume 1.  But on page 76 we get a collection of stuff they’ve never fully collected, I guess.  I’m curious, at least!

Grr, they’re collecting a bunch of Watchmen rarities in the Companion on page 78, including the RPG modules (which I have the Taking out the Trash one), as well as the Question issue and Who’s Who pages, but since I don’t want to give DC more money for screwing over the Beardy One, I’m going to miss out on this.  Hopefully a library will get this!  I like how they point out that Moore sanctioned the RPG (was it from 1990?), though.  Twist that knife, DC!

It includes The Question #17, “guest-starring Rorschach”? Really, DC? That’s really trying to mess with readers, isn’t it?

Page 83 has a couple of fun figures, with Batman: The Adventures Continue Red Hood and Azrael figures, which are based on the BTAS style and designed by Ty the Guy Templeton.  They look cool, although Azrael’s arms seem … unwieldy.

Oh man, the Graphitti Designs Gallery editions are on pages 86-87, and retailers get special discounts.  I wish I had more money, so I could get my retailer to order me up some of these books, like Sandman, or LOEG, or DKR, or even Ronin, even though I haven’t read the original.  So much cool!


Click here to see the full solicits.

Congrats to the IDW team for getting to 100 issues of TMNT, on page 128, and for getting a new Eastman and Laird cover too!  I believe that Sophie Campbell takes over the book next issue, so that should be cool.

Oh man, that Simonson/Sakai Ragnarok and Usagi Yojimbo jam poster is awesome on page 133!  Please inquire means it’s too expensive for me!

I wonder why this Star Wars Adventures Omnibus on page 151 doesn’t include issue 9.  It looks like it’s a Droids issue, so I don’t see any reason it shouldn’t be included.

I think, although I’m not positive, that that was the hard-core porn issue – hot Droid-on-Droid action! I can’t believe they published it in the first place …

Why do you think R2D2 is that height?

I should get the trade of Road of Bones on page 156, since it sounded interesting, about a guy trying to escape a gulag, and the creators do stuff for ComixTribe, and I like their stuff.

Well, I’m getting it, so that should influence you quite a bit!

It always does!

Getting to see some Simonson artwork up close (copies of his art for Ragnarok) a few months ago at a con makes me want the Thor Artisan Edition on page 161 even more, which I think has all the stuff from the Artist’s Edition?  But for only 50 bucks, which is more gooder.

It probably does – the Artisan Editions are just a smaller size than the Artists Editions, so it’s on regular-sized paper and not the actual size of the original art. Still very cool, though.


The complete solicits are here.

I’m finding this New Mutants to be compelling, although again, it’s X-Men in space and as you said, that’s the road to madness.  Rod Reis is doing a Billy the Sink riff that’s an homage but not slavish in execution (which is fitting since Sink started as a Neal Adams clone).  I don’t know who the “missing member” would be, not being up enough on the New Mutants.  I am wondering why the first issue is co-written by Hickman and Brisson, and issue 2 is by Hickman solo — I would have guessed that Brisson would take over the book, but I don’t know.  This is one I’m interested in reading the trade.

Meh. Reis is a decent artist, but I don’t know if he can handle action as well as he needs to when drawing a Big Two Superhero Comic. And yeah, space? Blech.

And it’s Sunspot’s penis, by the way. Who knows where it went!

I thought I was bad.

Speaking of which, Gladiator certainly seems happy to see them!

OK, so from what I’m reading, Cable is young in these books (based on Fallen Angels on page 8 and X-Men on page 10), and Psylocke is now Kwannon, while Betsy Braddock is a separate woman who is now Captain Britain (see Fallen Angels, and Excalibur on page 12).  Also, Krakoa is apparently the X-Men’s home base.  Weird changes that don’t always make for more compelling stories, maybe, but I’m willing to see where Hickman and company are going.  Eventually.  In trade.

Blech Part Deux. You know, I could have lived a long, happy life and never read the word “Kwannon” in a comic book solicit ever again. Why does Marvel think this is a good idea? It was terrible when it first happened, and now? Triple Blech!

I think we’ve all been waiting for an ongoing series starring Scream, yet another symbiote character.  Thank god Marvel gives it to us on page 22.

They already did a Munch variant, in case you’re wondering (I know you were!). It was weirdly terrible. But I guess it’s a “hawt” character, so of course Marvel is striking the iron! Don’t blame them, blame the consumers!!!!

I usually do.

Oh good lord, is that why they brought Conan to the Marvel U, so they could do a 2099 book about him? (page 29)

Probably not the only reason, but it’s also probably not not a reason.

You love it, fanboyzzzz!

I will of course get Deadpool, on page 32, in trade, since our pal Kelly is writing it, and Bachalo is drawing it (his recent Amazing Spider-Man stuff seemed to blend the best elements of his different styles, which was good, and left off some of the hinky layouts that he’s done).  I’m glad Kelly keeps getting high profile gigs like this.

It sounds like there’s going to be some Elsa Bloodstone in it, too, which is never a bad thing!

Ooh, that should be cool, because I know Kelly loves Nextwave!

Are we making a big deal about Black Widow joining the Avengers in issue #27 (page 67)? Why is that a big deal, exactly? Hasn’t she ever been a member of the Avengers? And if she hasn’t, so many other people have, so what’s the big deal with her? The headline should have read “Black Widow DOESN’T join the team!” Now that would have been news!

She was the leader right after the Onslaught stuff, iirc.  What’s weird is that she seems like she’d be one of the least effective members for a space adventure versus the Starbrand!

So I saw news about some “new” Marvel team (Dr. J and the Jam Masters — I don’t know, did you see it, do you remember the name?), and now I see the artwork shown with the solicit for Runaways 27 on page 84, so … is it just that that team goes full-on superhero/cape style?  Whoopee!

Dunno. I rarely pay attention to “comics news.” Although if they had a book called Dr. J and the Jam Masters in which 1970s Julius Erving was team leader of a group of crime-fighting rappers, YOU COULD LADLE THAT ONTO MY NAKED BODY PIPING HAWWWWWWWTTTTTTTT!!!11!1!!!!111!!!1!

I’m doubtful I’ll spring for the HC of it, but the two new Hickman X-series are in an HC on page 100, with House of X and Powers of X together.  Will they print them in publishing order, then? Sort of sounds like it.  This reboot/retcon is what inspired our recent Atomic Roundtable, so I am interested in actually reading it.

It’s 12 issues for 50 bucks, which is actually not a bad deal in today’s overpriced world. I don’t know – I just might wait for the softcover, because while initially it sounded pretty cool, the more I hear about it, the dumber it sounds. Why is that so true for so many comics these days?!?!?!?

… Dammit, after I decide to spring for Marvel Comics 1000 and 1001, they do a HC with the whole thing and more for $30 on page 103.  I got the 1000 issue but haven’t read it yet (hey, it came out last week, ok?  That’s quick for me to get to if I do read it!), but man oh man are there a lot of cool creators.

Yeah, but 30 bucks is insane for two 10-dollar books and extras that probably aren’t worth it (it’s probably just all the covers, and who really gives a shit?).

Well, I don’t need it since I have the main series from way back, and I just got the new Epilogue recently, but sometime I’m going to spring for the Marvels 25th Anniversary HC on page 105.  It’s been ages since I read the book, but it was very good.

Yeah, I’m going to get this like a sucker. Probably. Dare I hope for a 30-dollar softcover?

Well, I guess I know what expensive book you’re going to be buying when I see the Marvel Masterworks Dazzler HC 1 on page 109.  Oh lordy.

I very much doubt it. I bought the … Essential volume? The Omnibus? I don’t know, but I bought one collected edition just for the graphic novel, which I could never find. The issues are dirt cheap and not that hard to find, so I’m not spending $75 for the Masterworks. I love that Marvel is doing this, but it seems weird.

The world finally makes sense!

Man, I wouldn’t mind getting the Treasury size version of Silver Surfer: Black on page 130, but not for $30.  Too rich for my blood!

Damn it. The art is sooooooooooo cool, but that is pretty steep. I’ll have to think about it!

Ooh, what I read of Loki: Agent of Asgard was pretty good, so I’m considering this Complete Collection trade on page 138, since it’s 22+ issues for 40 bucks.  Not too bad a deal!

It’s quite good. You should pick it up!

There’s a collection of “X-Cutioner’s Song” on page 143. DO NOT BUY THIS!!!!! This is a true dumpster fire of comics, and Marvel should be paying us $35 to read this!

OK, I’m interested in Spectacular Spider-Man: Lo, This Monster trade on page 146, since it collects the 2 issues of the magazine from the late ’60s, but it doesn’t indicate that the book is magazine sized.  It implies it, but it doesn’t actually say, and since I have these in Essential volumes, I’m going to take a pass for now.

What Essential volume? Were they included in with the Amazing Spider-Man ones? Because if so, I have them too.

In the Amazing Spider-Man ones, but check which printings you have, because I don’t think it was every version of those Essentials.

I don’t know why either of the books on page 147 are being done, but I think I might want them both.  MODOK: Head Trips collects pretty much all of the MODOK stories, I guess, but best of all it includes the Marvel Adventures story where a lot of Avengers get turned into MODOKs!  It’s a lot of fun.  I also am interested in Tigra: The Complete Collection, as it includes The Cat mini from the ’70s and a bunch of other stuff.  They’re both 40 bucks so I’m probably not going to keep them on my final list, but someday maybe I’ll get them.

The M.O.D.O.K. book also includes M.O.D.O.K.’s 11, which is fun as heck. So yeah, it might be a good thing to get if you’ve never read any of them, but it’s a bit dear for me. I’m also leaving your lack of periods in “MODOK” in because it shows everyone how ignorant you are!!!!!!

I don’t c.a.r.e.

On page 148 is a collection of Spider-Man Magazine from the ’90s, based off the cartoon, I guess, and I’m wondering if the artist Jesse Orozco did these before or after he pitched for the Mets?  (Oops, I’m being told now that the spelling is different so this is, in fact, a different dude.  Carry on!)

That’s kind of a deep cut there, sir.

The first 8 issues of Unbeatable Squirrel Girl are reprinted in one volume on page 149, and it’s a pretty good deal for a really good comic.  I have the first 10 trades out from the liberry so hopefully I’ll write about this series soon!  (Stop laughing!)


We go somewhere different for the solicits.

I’m tempted on the Dawn/Vampirella trade on page 185.  Don’t judge me!

Oh, I judge, I JUDGE!!!!

Why would Travis want this? Think, Burgas, think!!!!!

Wait, what?  The Boys Collectible Homelander $2 Bill on page 194 is a neat sounding little item, as I don’t think I’ve heard of that sort of thing before, but holy crap, they’re saying it’s legal tender?!  You could actually use this at a store?!  I mean, you wouldn’t, because it’s at least $25 to purchase, but holy crap!

That’s really weird. I’d be too tempted to spend it just to see if it works!

Boom! Studios:

Read the solicits here.

I don’t feel like they’re clear enough on Folklords on page 200, but maybe I’m just dumb.  It’s a kid in a fantasy world who’s having visions or whatever that he belongs in our regular mundane world, right?  Anyway, it’s by Matts Kindt and Smith, and it appears that Smith is the one who did Barbarian Lord, which was quite good He-Man-ish homage.  I met him at the same con where I pissed off Joe Kubert!

Yes, that sounds like it’s it. You’re really dining out on the “I pissed off Joe Kubert once” story, aren’t you?

… yes …

Okay. Carry on, then!

B.B. Free on page 204 from Gabby Rivera and Royal Dunlap sounds like a typical fantasy of finding out you’re the chosen one, but the Plague That Ate Greed is a cool sounding name.  And the artwork looks quite good.

I can’t believe they actually use the words “chosen one” in the solicits. I mean, dang, could you be any more generic?

Well, here’s another trade I’ll be getting, as Heartbeat on page 206 is by Maria Llovet, who did There’s Nothing There (I think that was the title) and Faithless with Azzarrello recently, and whose art has got a neat vibe to it.  It almost looks like Paul Pope crossed with Geof Darrow here!

Yeah, that looks neat. She’s a bit obsessed with blood and sex, or bloody sex, or sexy blood, isn’t she?

Are they playing in Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band?

I never watched the show, but I like the title to this continuation of it – Rocko’s Modern Afterlife, collected on page 220.

It’s off to the back of the book!

The latest Cerebus in Hell? one shot from Aardvark-Vanaheim might actually sell, because it’s a Star Wars parody called Vark Wars on page 231.

Ablaze has some neat stuff.  Mirka Andolfo’s Un/Sacred is a love story involving an angel and a devil on page 231.  On page 232 is The Old Geezers, a European story of three septuagenarians and their lives.  And listed is The Cimmerian: Queen of the Black Coast, but apparently Marvel objected and Diamond is folding, so this one’s no longer listed on the website nor will it be available through Diamond.  Whoops!  Guess they shouldn’t have spelled out that it’s Conan, and just winked about it.  (And the thing is, they’re apparently in the right because of copyright, but the corporation is going to win out, because Conan 2099 is more in keeping with what REH intended than this book …)

Wow, that’s ridiculous. So Marvel doesn’t own the character but gets to object to who uses it? That’s utter bullshit. Maybe I won’t write X-Men for you, Joey Q!

(Oh, who am I kidding, I’ll still write X-Men for you, Joey Q. Call me! I just had another brilliant idea for my X-Men run this very morning!)

It could have been the licensor and not Marvel itself per se.  Possibly.

So I know that Joshua Cotter did Skyscrapers of the Midwest, so apparently this AdHouse Books offering on page 240, Skyscrapers, Inc. GN, is a sequel? I guess?  But it’s also a 10 year report and accounting as well.  OK.

Dunno. I wasn’t impressed with Skyscrapers of the Midwest (don’t tell Cronin!), so I won’t get this.

AfterShock has the first trade of Dark Red, a vampire story set in our modern political times, on page 242.

I’m a little curious about this, but we’ll see.

That guy’s not a very good custodial engineer

Since I’ve always liked Pat Olliffe’s art since Untold Tales, I’m considering the complete Rough Riders HC on page 249, because for 40 bucks, you are getting 17 issues (and I thought they did a handbook type thing too).  Not too bad for this LOEG-style story of real life people led by Teddy Roosevelt.

It’s pretty good. I mean, historically, it’s ridiculous (not in the sense of “this shit never happened,” which of course, but in the sense of “this could not possibly have happened in any way”), but it’s still a fun comic.

Of course I’m getting The Dragonfly and Dragonflyman on page 252, because I’ve been getting all of the Ahoy single issues, and while I’m behind on reading, I love what I have read.

I don’t know if I should get this or not. The trade was very good, but I don’t know if I should support the single issues to help out the company. I don’t know, I’ll think about it. It should be good, though.

You didn’t mention the trade of Bronze Age Boogie on the same page, which is a 1970s pop-culture smorgasbord, apparently. Stuart Moore and Alberto Ponticelli are pretty good creators, so I’ll get this.

I got the single issues but didn’t get around to reading them yet.  I’m awful!

She doesn’t look pleased

Well, that’s another Fine mess (and if they’re not using that pun, they should!) on page 256 from American Mythology, which is teaming up Laurel and Hardy and the Three Stooges.  I’m going to snag this, I think!

I’ve been waiting for the trade on Sabrina the Teenage Witch, written by our pal Kelly Thompson and art by Veronica Fish, and Archie offers it on page 269.  I’m in!

Yeah, I’ll probably get this, too.

Unless Avatar actually ships the books they claimed were on sale months and months ago, I’m not going to get all that excited for the complete box set of Cinema Purgatorio on page 276.  What might tempt me is that they screwed up and misprinted an issue, didn’t they?  Fix that and we’ll talk, Avatar!

That’s a superb price, though. I mean, really excellent. I know it might never ship, but I’m a bit peeved that it’s that cheap!

Ooh, Book Palace tempts me with Illustrators Special 6, the Art of Brian Bolland on page 280.  That’s probably too rich for my blood, but we’ll see!

Hmm, Burlyman Entertainment comes back with a couple collections.  Doc Frankenstein is collected and completed in a big HC, while the Matrix Comics are collected in a 20th anniversary HC.  The David Lapham story was quite good, and there are a ton of great creators who did stories for it.  I’m going to consider this, even though I still haven’t seen the movies!

I’ll probably get the Doc Frankenstein book, but I’m not sure about the other one. We shall see.

I’m interested in one from Chapterhouse on page 290, American Daredevil: The Battles of Lev Gleason, who published the original Daredevil and Crime Does Not Pay.  Should be a fascinating subject, but Chapterhouse is iffy on getting books out anymore.

Why can’t D&Q get the Little Lulu collection together?  Oh, I see, the new listing of the HC on page 294 ups the price to $29.95.  Grr.

Fantagraphics has another nice book collecting stuff from the 1950s, with Atom Bomb and Other Stories by Kurtzman and Wood on page 305. Of course I’m buying this!

Why must Fantoons tempt me with the Frank Zappa Coloring Book on page 306?  I’d be more interested in getting it if I hadn’t heard that the Zappa kids are at odds over his legacy and who owns/controls what.

That solicit, though: “greatest composer, musician, futurist and innovator”? Zappa? Really? Tap the brakes there, Previews. Have you actually heard any of Zappa’s so-called “music”?

Swords at dawn, sir!  Zappa is incredible!

I’ll give him his mustache-growing skills, though!

Van Jensen and Nate Powell have Two Dead on page 307 from Gallery 13, a book about a town in the post-war South that explodes into violence, told from many different perspectives. I like Jensen and I love Powell, so I’ll have to get this sucker.

I do like Valiant comics, so I’m intrigued by the Valiant Digital Collections from Graphic Imaging Technologies on page 310.  But I probably won’t shell out for it because I’m not big on reading comics on a computer screen (as well as not having a computer I can use regularly at home!).

Hero Tomorrow has, on page 313, a trade of Tap Dance Killer, which is a spin-off of Apama the Undiscovered Animal. I’ll have to give it a look!

I’ve gotten the single issues but, as is my wont, I have not been reading them yet.

On page 316, Insight has Buyan volume 1: The Isle of the Dead, in which a man from a village caught between Mongols and the Teutonic Knights loses the love of his life, so he goes looking for the island of the dead, like you do. Sounds keen.

Wha?! Scout Comics gets into licensed comics, it seems, with a book of The Island of Misfit Toys from Rudolph on page 343.  It’s got art by George Kambadais so it should be good in that area, anyway!

I’ve heard of The Master and Margarita but never read it, and now SelfMadeHero adapts it to comics on page 344.  So I don’t have to read alla them words!

You should read it. It’s superb.

I’m not sure if The Bad Bad Place HC on page 346 from Soaring Penguin Press is collected from the latest run of Meanwhile …, but I think it might be.  It’s by David Hine and Mark Stafford.

I love the comics by these two, so I’ll get this!

She should be playing the pan flute!

Source Point Press has a lot of interesting ones on pages 346 and 347.  Achilles Inc. TP 1 is about a segment of people who gain superpowers and become the new 1%, and the battle to defeat them.  Goth: Young Lovers at War is by Paul Allor and Seth Adams and is about actual (Visi)goths in love in the 3rd century, and the cover art looks cool.  Touching Evil came out before from some company, where an attorney can kill evil people when she touches them with her hand (I have the HC or trade of this but haven’t read it yet, several years later, he says shamefully.  I wonder if this reprints that stuff or if it’s a new story.).  Seeress: Reckless is about a Viking witch in Iceland in the 900s, so that might be cool.  The Misplaced is about the afterlife and looks like some of the real early Vertigo painted stuff.

The Visigoth book sounds fun, and like you, I haven’t read Touching Evil yet either, so I don’t know if this is new or not. We are both shamed!!!!

At least I’m not the only one this time!

Hmm, Storm King has John Carpenter’s Tales of Science Fiction: Redhead on page 348, and it sounds interesting, about a woman who wakes up after a seizure to find she’s deadly to anyone standing within 3 feet of her (imagine being the one who figured out that 3.5 feet was ok, but the next guy found 3 feet = no good).  I like what I’ve read in general of Duane Swierczynski’s writing, so this could be cool.

Ooh, a new printing of Steranko’s History of Comics Volume 2 on page 349 from Supergraphics.  Someday I’ll shell out for this!

Toonhound Studios has a few neat ones on page 359.  Binwin’s Minions is about a warrior dude trying to put together some adventurers, but all he can get are lame-os.  The cartoony style looks interesting.  Nosferatu by Marie Enger is a tribute to the Murnau movie.  And Metro is co-written by Cullen Bunn and Brian Quinn with art by Walter Flanagan (the dude that’s friends with Kevin Smith, I think? and whose art is actually not too bad), and it’s about a dude who comes back from the dead with no memory but is in a city that seems to know him and protect him.  That’s an intriguing concept.

Yeah, Flanagan is buddies with Smith. You’re right about his art – it’s not bad, but it’s also not great. However, it gets the job done, and Metro does sound kind of neat.

Strange things are afoot!

I’m not entirely sure what is meant by the Alter Ego 152 solicit copy (from the good folks at TwoMorrows on page 360) — was there a previously unknown “prototype” of Batman from 1932, and of Wonder Woman as well?  Based on the cover art, it’s no surprise they weren’t as compelling as the characters we know today.

I assume it’s just early versions of the characters. Characters need to evolve, you know!

But they’re not by anyone who was later known for those characters.  Weird!

OK, I’m going to have to grab Uncivilized Comics‘s For Real on page 361, as it’s a comic by James Romberger about Jack Kirby and his WWII service and his cancer battle at the end of his life.  Sounds very interesting!

Vault has some neat stuff too.  On page 368 is Black Stars Above, about a young woman in 1887 who flees her fur trapper family with a parcel that has spooky secrets!  On 369, Lando Calrissian would like to steal a planet in Heist.  (Maybe not.  Also, for the homage cover, why is it saying that it’s honoring Los Bros AND Bolland?  Are these characters referencing some specific Bolland design I’m not thinking of?)  And on page 370, a couple of trades.  Cult Classic: Return to Whisper finally collects the Big Chill-esque story of kids who found a treasure and 15 years later meet up.  She Said Destroy is about the last group in the universe who doesn’t believe in a sun goddess, but instead worship her death goddess sister.  That probably won’t go well for them!

That’s weird. I don’t know why they mention Bolland. Curioser and curioser …

Well, that can’t be good news …

Ooh, Peter Kuper is adapting Heart of Darkness on page 375 for WW Norton.  The horror!

I’ll probably have to get this. It’s one of my favorite books, so I guess I should check this out!

I made the mistake of reading some of the manga solicits, so now you have to learn about them too.  On page 384, Seven Seas/Ghost Ship has Destiny Lovers, about a young man who promised his first sexual experience for his childhood friend, but that promise is tested when he’s thrown into a secret prison where the jailers are trying to take his virginity by using every kink in the book.  And on page 385, Sublime has Yarichin Bitch Club, where the photography club at an all-boys’ school is actually offering sex to the students.  A fact that was unbeknownst to the transfer student who just joined the club.  Japan is weird, man!

Also, they seem to have a lot of manga where the protagonist is killed and reborn in a new world, like in the one from Yen Press on page 404, The Eminence in Shadow, where a guy who wants to be part of a secret society is killed and reborn as the head of such an organization.  It’s a running theme from what I’ve seen.

I get what they mean, but Digital Manga Distribution‘s Twilight of the Dark Master v1 on page 411 refers to the “street-sex industry”, and that sounds like roadburn would be painful!

I always knew that Adam Warren hadn’t created the Dirty Pair, the manga characters with whom I believe he first made his name, but I don’t know if I ever knew much if anything about the original.  Now it’s all available in English in one volume from Seven Seas Entertainment on page 417 for only 20 bucks.  Not a bad deal.

See, this is another common genre in manga, a person who’s secretly some other magical or mythical creature, and on page 419 is the first volume of My Father is a Unicorn, where a boy has to deal with his new stepdad, the unicorn of the title.  Why not?

On M49, they’re pushing X-Men Legends, figures that have the same packaging as the ’90s figures did, and I’m like, some of us never threw out the originals, dammit!  Also, kids love an X-team that can fight Silver Samurai.  Yeah.

If I can’t see Bat-dick, why do I want a special Batman Damned Funko Pop figure, like they’re trying to get me to buy on page M54?

I do like the Simpsons Treehouse of Horror figures on the same page, though!

They do get it right with the Iggy Pop Funko Pop on page M59, as he is shirtless.

Oh dammit, now they may have really lured me in, with Mad Men figures on page M60.  Complete with cigs and glasses of alcohol?  That’s going to tempt me.  Grr.

The Peggy one is A-MAH-ZING.

I know, right!?!


Ooh, the concept of the character kind of sucks (although I think they’ve embraced the absurdity of it), but the look is way kewl, so the Cosmic Ghost Rider statue on page M75 is pretty neat looking.  Not $160 worth, but still.

That’s it for this month, kids. This time you can definitely blame me for the lateness and not Travis. He was quick like cat with this, and I was slow like ancient tortoise. Dagnabbit! Have fun checking out this month’s catalog!


  1. tomfitz1

    I really wish that DC didn’t shut down the Vertigo imprint.
    The Black Label is fine for adult-oriented Superheroes book (even the Young Animal could fit in), but not the Sandman Universe titles.
    It gets kinda confusing when DC shoves all the Adult-oriented books into the Black Label.

    The Undiscovered Country (and the cover) is aptly named. Definitely applies to today’s US frame of mind these days. The POTUS seems to be burning all of the bridges and making enemies rather than allies.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but doesn’t that look like Constantine on the cover of METRO?

    Is that Elizabeth Moss from MAD MEN at the end of the column?!?

    1. Greg Burgas

      Tom: I agree with you about Vertigo, especially as DC seems in no mood to shut down “Mature Readers” comics, so why not keep the imprint around? Oh well.

      I disagree with you about The Undiscovered Country, as while it’s certainly Trump’s viewpoint, his supporters are still in the minority. The problem is that they’re an extremely vocal minority, so that’s all anyone hears!

      Didn’t you read about the Mad Men Funko Pop! figures, including the Peggy one? Come on, sir! 🙂

  2. Point of order about bringing back Vic Sage when Renee Montoya was a perfectly good Question:

    I love love love Vic Sage–the O’Neil version was one of my favorite comics ever–but I would essentially agree with this sentiment. Except that’s not the most recent status quo. The New 52 version of the Question looked like the old one but was some faceless immortal cursed to wander the Earth questioning everything to atone for some forgotten sin. He was part of the Trinity of Sin with the similarly cursed Pandora and the Phantom Stranger.

    That version really, really needed to be undone, and however must they had to turn back the clock to make the Question the Question again is OK with me. Especially if they reintroduce Renee later.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Sam: I could have sworn I’ve read some comics since the New 52 with Renee as the Question, but perhaps not. And if that’s the fustercluck they’re undoing, yeah, I’m all for bringing back Vic Sage. I mean, Jeebus, that sounds terrible!

      1. Yeah, the Trinity of Sin stuff was garbage. And they worked so hard to foreshadow it by having Pandora cameo in every single first issue of the first-batch New 52! I mean, what’s the point of even doing the Question if you keep the name and look but change every single thing about the character concept?

  3. That whole Trinity of Sin thing sucked. I don’t ever want an established origin for the Phantom Stranger.
    I quite like most of Mike Carey’s stuff (I love Unwritten). Hellblazer not so much, but that’s because I find Constantine preferable in small doses.

    1. Yeah, I like a lot of Carey’s stuff too, most notably Lucifer and The Unwritten. Those two alone make him writing something sufficient for me to at least check it out from the library.

      I wasn’t so into his X-Men stuff, but I’m not so into the X-Men, so I guess that makes sense.

  4. Edo Bosnar

    I’ve had the Tigra Complete Collection, and also the similar Man-Wolf collection, on preorder at Amazon for many months now. I’ve been wanting those stories in collected form for so long there’s no way I’m passing those books up now – esp. since it seems like someone at Marvel decided to put those books together specifically to make me happy.

  5. Rantel

    If the Female Furies controversy you’re referring to is the same one I’m thinking of, it was that someone posted a relatively mild criticism of one of Dan Panosian’s covers on twitter (didn’t tag him or anything), he found it and was kind of a huge baby about it. It was quite a stir in the comics twitterverse for a few days.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Rantel: I recall the Panosian flap, but I thought there was something in issue #1 or 2 which implied a lot of sexual abuse of the women on Apokolips. Which, I mean, duh. But people were upset. Maybe I’m misremembering. I guess I’ll find out, because I’m getting the trade!

  6. Personally I’m of two minds about the Tigra collection. I love the character but haven’t been particularly into those earliest stories when I’ve reread them. I think it’s awesome that they’re being collected, but it seems like something that I would read once and wouldn’t necessarily need to keep. (I picked up the Werewolf by Night collections and I’m leaning toward selling them off for the same reason.) But that’s a highly subjective take, and your mileage may vary.

    By contrast, most of that MODOK stuff is gold, so I’m all over that action.

  7. Call Me Carlos the Dwarf

    Renee’s back, too!

    She’s been popping up in Rucka’s Lois Lane book (because, duh), and she just appeared in the latest Event Leviathan issue as part of Lois’s “secret” team of detectives.

  8. Terrible-D

    I picked up the Bronze age Swamp Thing omnibus, only to later find out the tpb have more material. I spit on the ground and cursed. Anyone want to buy a really heavy book?

    Also, Cannonball is the missing New Mutants member.

  9. Simon

    This won’t be on the test!

    > “Previews 372”


    > T: “Undiscovered Country”

    Why does it sound so utterly Soule-less?

    > “DC”


    > G: “freaked out by dollhouses”

    Do you know Dare Wright, the Shirley Jackson of children’s books?

    That eerie dissonance between her texts and pictures in the creepy classic THE LONELY DOLL, a 1957 book eponymous to a then-popular series: 15 samples at Curious Pages, reviews (Sam Quixote|Booktryst|NYT).

    > T: “Famous First Edition: New Fun 1”

    Should they flaunt how comics used to have 12 panels?

    > T: “Road of Bones”

    5 issues aborted into 4, and apparently that was still too many?

    * “Stretching a nasty idea across four issues have left it so deflated that there’s little joy to be found even in the most horrifying moments. Road of Bones turned a short and sweet concept appropriate for classic EC Comics into something that slowly starved across four months of unnecessary extension, bound to be forgotten” @ https://comicbook.com/comics/2019/08/14/new-comic-reviews-dc-marvel-image/

    > “Marvel”


    > T: “Marvel Masterworks Dazzler”

    The Blaire Witch Project?

    > T: “Folklords”

    Kindt kindly warned: “As soon as my plucky editor, Eric, said the word ‘FOLKLORDS’, I had an image of this teenage kid in a black suit and tie…” (Commercial fantasy written on specs for teens?)

    > T: “The Old Geezers”

    Lupano & Cauuet’s comedy/adventure is fun. It’s a DM omnibus of the mainstream market’s bests-of-2017 and bests-of-2018 books, prolly sitting sans mousetrap at your library. (Lupano also wrote bests-of-2018 comedy/adventure A SEA OF LOVE.)

    > G: “Two Dead”

    On one hand, its “FC” is black & sepia. On another, you get the $30 HC while Amazon have to make do with a $20 SC.

    * (11-page preview) https://www.comicsbeat.com/nate-powell-van-jensens-two-dead/

    * “doesn’t quite deliver a knockout punch but is highly engaging. Good pulp.” @ https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/van-jensen/two-dead/

    > T: “page 310”

    By the by, same page has the last volume of Molly Knox Ostertag’s trilogy at Graphix, and maybe that’ll end the hiatus of STRONG FEMALE PROTAGONIST?

    > T: “Heart of Darkness”

    The 3 sample pages make it look uncompelling and splash-heavy.

    > G: “Have fun checking out this month’s catalog”

    Back-to-school fun with Tom Siddell’s GUNNERKRIGG COURT VOL. 6 (217)! And more fic:

    * Owen D. Pomery’s arctic mystery BRITISH ICE (159, whose “FC” is 2C)
    * Lucas Harari’s stylish SWIMMING IN DARKNESS (278)
    * Walt Kelly’s POGO VOL. 6 (305, to be switched to $45 as usual)
    * THE COMPLETE CREPAX BK. 5 (304… perv)

    Or nonfic:

    * Riad Sattouf’s teenaged ARAB OF THE FUTURE BK. 4 (324)
    * John Kerschbaum’s SCIENCE COMICS: SKYSCRAPERS (306)

    So many mousetraps for watchlists!

    1. Greg Burgas

      Simon: I already have Gunnerkrigg Court in hardcover, so I forgot to mention the softcover. And I don’t love Crepax. His art is phenomenal, but he just meanders around, drawing naked chicks and not doing much else to create, you know, a story. It’s too bad – I would love to get more of his art, but not for the price Fantagraphics charges.

  10. BB

    There is quite a bit I’m looking forward to in this month’s offerings!

    – Vampirella: The Essential Warren Years vol. 1 (Dynamite)
    I don’t have any Vampirella, and these Archie Goodwin stories looks like they’re the stuff to have!

    – TMNT #100 (IDW)
    I’m getting it, like I have the whole series, but man is this thing going off the rails a bit. This “City at War” can’t hold a flame to the original story of the same name! The real TMNT to get is the colorized reprints of the Image run they’ve titled “Urban Legends”. That stuff is super zany and awesome!

    – Stumptown vol. 1 (Oni)
    I know this has been out a while, and I’ve not seen the show, but I like Rucka a lot.

    – Lazarus: Risen #3 (Image)
    Speaking of Rucka, boy this new double-size format has been great so far. Lazarus is as good as it’s ever been!

    – Star Blazers 2199: Space Battleship Yamato vol. 3 (Dark Horse)
    I’ve not read the other volumes yet, but they look gorgeous, and I think they’re based on the original (which is also gorgeous).

    – Ryuko vol. 2 (Titan/Hard Case)
    Speaking of manga, the first volume of Ryuko wasn’t ground breaking or anything, but it was a good modern manga. It’s by Hard Case, too, so it’s gotta be good! Maybe Hatcher has gotten his hands on advance copies and has read it, too?

    – Planet Caravan vol. 1 (Scout)
    I know nothing about this and want it just based on the cover alone. Anyone know anything about it?

    – Lucky Luke vol. 3 (Cinebook)
    I haven’t read the first two yet (I’m not sure they’ve shipped?), but I’m looking forward to them. These look great! Pretty much everything Cinebook does looks great.

    – Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past
    I never had a Nintendo, but I would play at friends’ houses like I was possessed. These were published in parts in Nintendo Power magazine. Might be cool!

    – Wally Wood’s Cannon & Spawn of Mars (Fantagraphics)
    I’m working on rearranging my order to cut a couple things and make room for Atom Bomb, too. Man, so much fantastic comics!

    Finally, that is complete crap Disney/Diamond/whomever caused The Cimmerian to be pulled. If you haven’t looked at the A covers of the first two issues go check them out. I hope something can eventually be worked out to get these in our hands at some point. If I could read French I’d buy the originals! Maybe the Brits won’t have the same troubles? If so, I’m getting it that way!

    1. Greg Burgas

      BB: Regarding Stumptown, the show premieres next week, so you haven’t missed anything!

      I don’t know why I missed Planet Caravan, but I ordered it too. I guess we’ll find out if it’s any good!

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