7 Sept 2011

Incoming... 07/09/2011

New comics are released Wednesday in the States and guess what, in the UK too! Here's a brief look at our expectations for the books we're picking up this week.

Stewart R: ‘Maybe’ - Five small letters that depict a possibility or uncertainty over an outcome.

“Are you going to be picking up DC’s _______ in September?” and “Are you going to be dropping any titles to make room for any of the new DC titles?” - Two questions that are no doubt being asked across the tables of secretive government meetings, in the confession boxes of Catholic churches, and over shared, third-date ice cream sundaes around the world.

These past few weeks I’ve been asking myself those two questions and more often than not, have been finding my response to both to be that indecisive five letter word. DC have to be applauded for their vision with the launch of the DC 52; by having such a varied selection of titles worked upon by a wealth of writers and artists and all delivered within a 5 week period they’ve ensured that there’s a temptation to pick up the odd sampler here and there that you perhaps wouldn’t have ever considered before. Having not been the biggest reader of DC’s titles previously I’m heading into this coming month with a somewhat reserved demeanour that may see me only increase my overall tally from the publisher by 2-3 titles. Detective Comics is actually an early casualty following the conclusion of Scott Snyder, Jock and Francesco Francavilla’s excellent run that Tony Daniel is not likely to be able to replicate the high quality of. To that end I’m thinking of taking something of a leap into the unknown with one or two titles.

While my love for the works of Jeff Lemire and Scott Snyder may make their latest debuts - Animal Man and Swamp Thing respectively - the predictable choices in line for a dabble I know that the majority of my Paradox Comics Group compatriots will be turning their attention to those titles and I’ll be able to get their valued opinions on whether they’re worth a look after a couple of months. So in a somewhat wild and strange move I intend to pick up one of the underdogs of the week in Keith Giffen and Dan DiDio’s O.M.A.C. #1. I’ve no idea where the character originates from and no idea if he/it is supposed to be a hero or villain. What I do know is that the artwork from Giffen, inking from Scott Koblish and colours by Hi-Fi have given this preview a terrific explosive, retro feel and that’s been enough to ignite my interest. I also like the idea of going into one of DC's new titles with no preconception of what I'm about to read although I willll admit I wasn’t keen on my last experience with Didio’s writing when he took on Metal Men in Wednesday Comics but I’m willing to give this a shot at least.

The only other DC title I’ll be picking up from the 13 on offer today will be Batgirl #1 and considering that until last month I’d been buying Bryan Q. Miller’s version this doesn’t really affect a change in the tally of titles I get regularly. The big change of course lies with the creative talent involved and with the identity of the titular heroine herself! Out of the cape is young Stephanie Brown (Nooooooooo!) and back in is Barbara Gordon (Yeah, OK, fair enough!) and it’s now become Gail Simone’s duty to lead Barb in her super-heroine adventures. By all accounts the events in Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s now legendary Batman: The Killing Joke seem to have still happened in this new Batgirl story but somehow Barbara’s injuries have not resulted in her becoming wheelchair-bound and adopting the role as Oracle. The intrigue is therefore likely to surround just how she has moved on from that famous attack and how her continuing caped-heroics will pan out in this strange new landscape of endless possibilities.

And so I now move onto one of those maybes. While I’ve enjoyed the first arc of Archie Comics Mega Man series I’m not fully convinced about my long term interest in the continuing stories once writer Ian Flynn moves into original material not based on the plots of the classic games. The arrival of two mysterious figures at the end of the last arc suggests that that may be sooner than later and with a pull-list that seems to just get bigger and bigger thanks to Image and DC’s continuing moves with new titles and relaunches I may have to make a last minute decision on Mega Man #5 when studying the comic-laden shelves of Paradox Comics today.

One comic definitely not making the cut this week sadly is Heroes For Hire which I nearly dropped a couple of times before. Abnett and Lanning’s writing has been reasonable but, as shown with the continuing dalliance with Fear Itself, the ongoing business opportunities of Misty Night and Paladin seem to be lacking in direction and I’m afraid that Kyle Hotz’s art work really isn’t my cup o’tea. With the upcoming post-Fear Itself ‘Point One’ titles, the post-Schism increase in X-Men related titles and an interesting new beginning for the Incredible Hulk in the pipeline, I think now is as perfect time as any to cut and run with my money.

Speaking of those mutant types though, I’m really looking forward to the next chapter of Victor Gischler’s Skull The Slayer story in X-Men #17. The previous issue was terrific fun with certain X-Men and Fantastic Four bouncing off each other and the big egos of Doctor Doom, Magneto and Doctor Nemesis all standing out. Jorge Molina’s art was really eye-catching and Gischler has shown a real flair for delivering these stories about the globe-trotting or cross-dimensional missions that only the X-Men can handle. And while we’re on the subject of pan-universe and reality changing events let us not forget that Matt Fraction and Gabriel Ba return to the world of Casanova Quinn this week in the brand new third arc starting with Casanova: Avaritia #1! The rumours and whispers abound that this will have a very different feel to the last installment, much as that did from the initial arc but when the adventures of Quinn and his bizarre entourage are anything but predictable anyway I think I’m prepared enough for anything that talented creative pairing can throw at me!


Joe T said...

Well, I ended up ordering Action Comics, Batgirl, Detective Comics, Justice League International, Swamp Thing, AND Stormwatch! I was very tempted by both OMAC and Green Arrow, but I have to draw a line somewhere, otherise I'll be broke! Also ordered Punisher #3. Probably my busiest week ever!

I'm very surprised at how well these issues are selling on ebay. Most were gone within minutes!

Stewart R said...

Blimey Joe, that is a busy week! ^_^ Just four more to go then...lol.

Matt Clark said...

Action Comics is the big title this week that I imagine most people will be checking out (except Stew!). I'm picking up 6 DC titles (the highest weekly figure for a looonnng time) but the one I'm most curious about is Men Of War. Some positive word being bandied around in the last few weeks.

Kenny J said...

Picked more DC this week than Marvel which doesn't happen often. I picked up five of the thirteen. Action Comics, Animal Man, Batgirl, Stormwatch & Swamp Thing. Looking forward to sitting down and reading them all in one go.

Tom P said...

I would love to read Casanova but having missed it in the past I'm hoping for a big collected edition to sink my teeth into one day. also grabbing a fair few DC books this week… Im weak.

The #1's I'm getting this week! Action Comics #1 Animal Man #1 Batgirl #1 Stormwatch #1 Swamp Thing.

ian walker said...

I'm going to be picking up all 13 DC comics this week and where I once was a big Marvel collector I'm now collecting more DC.
It's nice to see the new DC comics going back for 2nd and 3rd reprints already,but the proof will be in the sales chart.

Stewart R said...

Having been a little underwhelmed with Batgirl #1 I think I may be going back for a second helping of DC and grabbing hold of copies of Animal Man #1 and also Batwing #1 now I've realised that the rather awesome Ben Oliver is on art duties!

Joe T said...

@Stewart, you didn't like Batgirl? I've heard really good things about it so far. I'm also tempted by Batwing. I don't dislike Winick, but I'm not big enough of a fan to pick up a book about a random character wrtitten by Winick. But yeah, Ben Oliver on art is a massive draw to the title, and IGN did give it a good review too...

I've got to say though, OMAC is becoming more and more tempting

Juss said...

Just read O.M.A.C. and absolutely loved everything about it. I am a solid and longtime fan and buyer if future issues are this enjoyable. This was the best Keith Giffen art I've ever seen, and should be duly relished by every Jack Kirby fan. Dan Didio, despite my strong misgivings about him based on his editorial management, turned in a class A script. Frankly, for sheer enjoyment's sake, it surpassed Grant Morrison's script for Action #1, my only other purchase this week. I really, really hope this team continues on the book, and continues producing such a quality product. An emphatic Bravo!