16 Nov 2011

Incoming... 16/11/2011

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: With DC’s recent efforts it seems that every week is a bumper week for my pull list these days as the number of Marvel titles I pick up hasn’t waned much this year and Image continue to have a regular presence scattered amongst my pull list. This week is a perfect example of that with 5 DC books, 3 Image, 6 Marvel and one lone IDW title making up the collection of reading material awaiting me at Paradox Comics today.

Of those 15 titles the one I’m really itching to get stuck into is undoubtedly Green Lantern Corps #3 from Peter J. Tomasi and Fernando Pasarin. The two preceding chapters have been awesome and I do like the way that, despite having a presence across the galaxy, the Green Lanterns can still come up against numerous and deadly foes that they have never encountered before. Although this is a book that focuses on the two human lanterns - Guy Gardner and John Stewart - Tomasi is generous with the amount of attention and exposure that he gives to the other alien races that make up the Corps and I’m glad to see the likes of Isamot and Hannu involved in the fight in this series so far. Of course there’s no guarantee that any of the Green Lanterns are going to make it out of this current tight spot alive...

The same kind of uncertain tension over team members’ survival exists in Jeff Parker’s Thunderbolts and #165 hits the shelves today with a healthy ‘buy me’ thud. I’m always a little wary of time-travel in comics as it does often seem to be a recipe for disaster when it comes to continuity. Parker though has proven that he is a writer who thinks about the little details as well as the grander plot points and this World War 2-based arc is keeping the themes of causality and paradox at the very heart of the story and the characters’ concerns. With Baron Zemo making an appearance now it really does throw the Tbolts into a world of the unknown as to return to the future that they recognise he must surely survive, but then so must Captain America and Namor! Quite the quandary indeed and it’s that sort of writing that has kept me coming back for more and more of Parker’s work over the past couple of years.

I’m certainly glad that Larry Hama has managed to find his writing mojo of old again and G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #172 should be another unmissable chapter of what is turning into a great series for IDW. I will admit that continued amount of emphasis that gets placed on Snake Eyes, Storm Shadow and the Arashikage clan through various Joe titles does grate a little on the nerves to a similar degree that the presence of Wolverine in Marvel titles does, but Hama seems to be keeping the ninja action to reserved quantities for the moment thankfully. This issue is looking like one of those times when we will spend the majority of the page count following what the deadly martial arts masters are investigating and the backstory to the Russian offshoot of the clan has made for some interesting reading that’s for sure. Plus there’s also the awful life and death decision that Flint was left to make at the climax of last issue, with Lady Jaye and Darklon’s lives hanging by a thread and I suspect we’ll see just what choice he was forced to make in this issue.

Speaking of decisions, I’m really hoping that I’m not going to have to make a tough one after I read Haunt #18 this week. Gone will be Robert Kirkman and Greg Capullo, to be replaced on #19 by the rather awesome Joe Casey - he’s knocking it out of the park with Image’s Butcher Baker, the Righteous Maker and Marvel’s ` at the moment - and Nathan Fox. I was actually under the impression that the long delay we’ve been subjected to since the last instalment was down to the changing of the guard but it seems that the outgoing creators were holding one issue back in reserve. With things becoming the tiniest bit clearer as to Daniel and Kurt’s purpose as Haunt last time out I’m interested to see just where Kirkman leaves things before Casey picks up the writing reigns and also if Capullo’s efforts appear to be rushed at all considering how quickly he seems to have made the jump to Batman over at DC (and what a magnificent job he’s doing there!).

It’ll actually be good to have that side-by-side comparison today as, would you ‘Adam-and-Eve’ it, Batman #3 is also available for purchase this very Wednesday! There’s seems to be small similarities that have been linking the other Batman-related titles to this main book written by Scott Snyder; Batman: The Dark Knight had an Arkham Asylum riot and the similar focus on a philanthropic Bruce Wayne, while Batman And Robin also sees the Caped Crusader facing off against a new, dangerously talented and unrelenting foe. The Court of Owls, while remaining mysterious at present, appear to be linked to Gotham’s history much in the same way that the Wayne’s are, and with an attempt on Bruce’s life almost being seen through to success in #2 I’d say that things are going to get ever more complicated for the city’s pointy-eared guardian!

Phew, I’ve only covered a third of the titles that I’m picking up here and looking through the rest of the list there are some quality comics that I don’t have the time or space to talk about unfortunately! Maybe they’ll impress enough to get a review out of me later this week. Happy reading guys!

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