Stewart R: Is it Wednesday already? Jeez, these weeks fly past as quickly as Superman heading home after Lois drops him a raunchy email! Well once again my order is on the comparatively light side with just a handful of titles to be picked up on Thursday, or as it could be called, Happy Super Fun Day of Comic Book Love! That said I’m not sure many of the works I’ll be picking up will be focusing on the matter of love so much...
Straight of the bat we have Uncanny X-Force #1 from Rick Remender and Jerome Opena. Now I really did enjoy Kyle, Yost, Crain and Choi’s work on X-Force and really do feel that it’s a shame that that particular line-up of creators and characters has reached the end of the road. However, if the baton does have to be passed on again then I’m certainly happy for a couple of ingredients to be included whenever I’ve been reading about this new X-Force comic. Jerome Opena’s artwork is the biggest draw for me and had it not been for his brief stint on Vengeance of the Moon Knight (remember that anyone?) I may not have been starting this week’s Incoming... with this title. Opena’s detailed yet earthy style should be brilliantly suited to a Wolverine team-piece and I’m particularly looking forward to seeing how he handles the second big draw for me, Apocalypse. Yes, that’s right, old En Sabah Nur himself is back once again and with Archangel still popping up in Warren Worthington’s life every now and then you can bet he’s going to have something to say about the reappearance.
Remender is a writer who really does like to deliver when it comes to character-driven work - see Doctor Voodoo and Radical’s The Last Days of American Crime if you need further proof - and while this particular line-up of lethal mutants may take some explaining I’m fully prepared to see where he takes this. Funnily enough, mentioning Remender’s Doctor Voodoo title, I’ll of course be picking up his partner in crime for that book’s latest effort as Jefte Palo’s pencils can be seen in Taskmaster #2 which is also out this week. The first issue was an absolute blast with writer Fred Van Lente really pulling out the stops when it came to evil organisations of varied familiarity coming out of the woodwork to hunt down the Mercenary with the Photographic Reflexes. I’ve actually managed to get a few of the Paradox Group onto this comic after just one issue but it’s hard to tell whether it was me that convinced them or possibly the madcap plot for issue three that...*gulp*...well....*tee hee*...is set in a South American village populated entirely by Hitlers!!! Now, that guaranteed gem of madness is a month or so away so get down to your local comic shop and pick up the first two issues before that particular piece of magic descends upon us.
Finally from Marvel this week we have S.H.I.E.L.D. #4 hitting shelves around the world accompanied by many a cheer, and possibly the odd groan here and there. After a promising start I seem to be hearing grumblings that Hickman may be playing a little too much with real-life and Marvel-based history for a few people’s tastes. Certainly last issue’s look at the life of Sir Isaac Newton will have prompted a few raised eyebrows but I personally enjoyed the tale that Hickman was weaving and with a potential face off between Leonardo Da Vinci and Newton in the offing this week it’s really got to be worth picking up. Dustin Weaver’s art has been simply sumptuous thus far and I think he’s probably got even more of Hickman-suggested wonders to show us.
Well ok, there is another big Marvel title out this week and though I won't be picking it up I'd best mention it I suppose... Chaos War #1. There we go.
Right, over to Vertigo we head now where Jeff Lemire will hopefully be proving that his writing duties for Superboy and the back up Atom strip in Adventure Comics aren’t going to be getting in the way of his work on the quite brilliant Sweet Tooth. #14 could well be the issue that gets the story back on track after a few instalments that allowed Lemire to really take the foot off of the gas and give us an insight into Gus and Jeppard’s pasts while playfully experimenting with the comic medium and his use of the format. Certainly no other comic out there today looks or feels quite like Sweet Tooth and I would like to be able to say the same thing this time next year.
Also out this week is American Vampire #7, another chapter in a series that seems to be picking up pace. I really did enjoy #6 with Scott Snyder moving locale and shifting focus to some new characters and I don’t doubt for a second that top Vegas cop, Chief McCogan is likely to find plenty of claws and fangs all pointing at him before this latest offering’s last page has been turned. Rafael Albuquerque is an artist who can capture the feel of a time and place and a high note could well be how he renders 1930s Las Vegas once again.
So with Vertigo out of the way it just leaves one final comic to talk about and that would be Orc Stain #5 rolling out of Image’s stable and the colourful and creative mind of James Stokoe. Now folks, it seems that I’ve been piping on about this strange, comedic fantasy series for a good few months but I don’t think I know anyone else who is picking this up. Seriously, it has been a rip-roaringly good piece of fun to this point and if you’ve the spare time just pick up a copy from the shelf this weekend and have a thumb through; I suspect a fair few of you may just find that the bold colours and mind-blowing ideas could tempt you into this bizarre world of Orcs and other mysterious creatures.