Welcome to another edition of New Comics, where we give our suggestions on what books to pick up when perusing the comic shelves week to week. As always, I am joined by Kris Johnson of Bizarre Comics Entertainment. Read on to find the best of what the comic shop has in store for you this week.
Here we go.
RETURNING #1 $3.99 (Boom) – Now here is a book with a pretty bad ass and original premise: In the near future, anyone who has a near-death experience returns to the world of the living “changed”. Their behaviour gets wonked and violence becomes a regular reflex. No one knows why it’s happening, no one is close to answers, and the numerous bands of vigiliantes who’ve formed with the express purpose of eliminating these NDE wild cards don’t much give a damn. Following the trials of an innocent girl named Beth after she survives the worst night of her life, The Returning promises to offer up something different and complex this Wednesday and deserves a gander, I think. (Kris Johnson)
ASTRO CITY #10 $3.99 (Vertigo) – This week, Astro City wraps up it first big multi-issue story arch of the new series. It’s been awhile since Kurt Busiek brought out his “Big Three” and put them on display in tale such as this. What’s great is that even though there’s been some pretty cool action, not once has he shied away from what makes this title so engaging – it’s strong character work. I look forward to the conclusion of this story as I hope it will involve Samaritan, Winged Victory and Confessor throwing down with some baddies that don’t how far up shit creek they actually are. (Andrew)
HAWKEYE #17 $2.99 (Marvel) – Yes, it’s Hawkeye. Yes, it’s amazing. Yes, I always tell you to read it, but what’s makes this issue so special is that for the first time in a long time, I really have no idea how the last issue couldn’t have ended the way it appeared to have ended and thus am very curious to see how in the hell this issue begins. If you didn’t read Hawkeye #15, go out and buy that shit immediately so you can enjoy whatever madness awaits in #17. If you did read Hawkeye #15 then, well, you know just what it is that’s got me more excited than Clint Barton meeting Errol Flynn… Because that dude is dead and it would be crazy. (Kris Johnson)
CAPTAIN MARVEL #1 $3.99 (Marvel) – Hey kids, remember when Kelly Sue DeConnick starting writing the ongoing adventures of Carol Danvers? Well, SHE’S DOING IT AGAIN! The Captain’s back and she’s better than ever (she’s even lost the goofy hairdo she was sporting in the first series). But, as always, Kelly’s not making it easy for our dear captain. Carol’s at a crossroads and has a new life and new romance. She’s got a big decision ahead that will not only affect her life going forward but that of the Marvel universe! Isn’t it always a decision like that? We never read about the small decisions a hero has to make in comics, like if Carol’s switching her breakfast cereal. If we were reading about that it wouldn’t be comics, it would be gossip. Don’t need none of that here, thanks. In other news, did you hear that Bruce Banner has switched from boxers to briefs? My prediction is this will not end well for him. (Andrew)
BATMAN #29 $4.99 (DC Comics) – Despite his status as one of the most historically visible and popular members of Batman’s rogues gallery, I’ve generally found The Riddler in comic book form to be quite lame. Sure, Frank Gorshin ruled in the old tv series and John Glover was always excellent when Eddie Nygma showed up in Batman: The Animated Series, but on the printed page? Riddler? Cheese-bot deluxe. That said, I’ve been quite enjoying what Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo have done with the King of Questions during the course of Zero Year and in this, the final issue of Dark City, The Riddler may just be primed for his finest four-colour hour. Join me, will you? (Kris Johnson)
BEASTS OF BURDEN HUNTERS GATHERERS ONE SHOT $3.50 (Dark Horse) – Gonna pick up the latest issue of Beasts of Burden. Gonna go home and draw the curtains. All I want is for you to read this comic with me. Okay, so the Stones do a better version of this song than me but it is pretty awesome that this award winning title is sporting another one shot. Join Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson as they take us back to the town of Burden Hill and re-introduce us to the dogs, cats and one werewolf hybrid that protect it from monsters, madmen and Rolling Stones cover bands. It’s a shame really, I just wanted to do one show there and they showed me the door. Ain’t I rough enough? oh honey. Ain’t I tough enough? Ain’t I rich enough in love enough? Oh please!…….okay, so maybe they were right to send me packing. (Andrew)
MAGNUS ROBOT FIGHTER #1 $3.99 (Dynamite) – Fred Van Lente and Cory Smith reimagine the metal-merc’ing martial artist Magnus in this new Gold Key series from Dynamite! In a world where robots and humans co-exist as oppressed minorities, a time-tossed Magnus must learn to whip robo-ass in the hopes that he can somehow reclaim what he’s lost and learn the truth about his current reality. But what if he doesn’t like what he finds? He probably won’t. That’s my guess. It’s actually probably really shitty, what’s happened to him. My gut feeling there. (Kris Johnson)
SECRET AVENGERS #1 $3.99 (Marvel) – Yes, it’s another ALL NEW MARVEL NOW title starting this week and it’s a doozy. Ales Kot, who did a masterful job of helping Nick Spencer wrap the last series up and now he’s taking the reins on this new series that spreads the team thin, both physically and emotionally. We got three missions happening at the same time and a team that doesn’t trust their bosses or one another. At any moment Maria Hill could say the magic word and make them all forget the mission they just had. Manipulation runs deep in this story and it doesn’t help that there’s a new addition to the roster: M.O.D.O.K.! That’s right, that giant head with little arms is now on the Secret Avengers. I’m really looking forward to the offshoot miniseries that’s bound to happen starring Moddy and Hawkeye heading to Vegas and chatting up some ladies. But that’s for another time, for now they, along with Black Widow, SpiderWoman, Nick Fury and company got crap happening in on land, air and in space! Like G.I. Joe, they’ll fight for freedom but unlike them, it won’t be their freedom they’re fighting for. Mission starts Wednesday. (Andrew)
AVENGERS UNDERCOVER #1 $2.99 (Marvel) – Man-o-man! I have been waiting for this ever since the conclusion of Avengers Arena and it is finally here! In this new series from the AA team of Dennis Hopeless and Kev Walker, five of the severely emotionally damaged super-powered Murder World survivors decide to join the Masters of Evil in an attempt to infiltrate the deepest levels of the organization and destroy it from within. Will they be able descend into darkness and even hope to come out unscathed? I mean, we all know about when you stare into the abyss the abyss stares back and all that. And these kids, they were already staring mighty hard over in Avengers Arena. With Avengers Undercover they’re pretty much like eyeball-banging the abyss. Straight up ocular intercourse with evil. Probably won’t end well. (Kris Johnson)
SILK ROAD TO RUIN GN $19.99 (NBM) – If you enjoy real life stories about crazy travel adventures, this book is for you. Combining articles with comic chapters, cartoonist Ted Rall recounts his journey retracing the legendary Silk Road through the central Asian countries from China to “The Stans”. Part travelog mixed with a sarcastic travel guide feel, this book is set to be both funny and educational. If you like your hard facts and important stories told with a “tongue in cheek” lilt, you’ll proably enjoy Rall’s adventures in the “New Middle East”. (Andrew)
So there you go. Check these books out and let us what you think. We’ll be back again next week with more choice cuts of comic goodness!
If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!