14 Dec 2011

Incoming... 14/12/2011

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: Well, we find ourselves only a couple of weeks away from the true belt-busting festive fun and it seems that the comic publishers are keen to give us a creative warm-up with another fat turkey of a delivery today! Once all of the feather’s have been removed it’s quite clear that this is a healthy bird with plenty of tasty meat on the bones which, having taken a fair time to cook through (thanks to the hands of many chefs but no broth here so no worries!), should take a good portion of my day to devour!

Always good to give up some time for a new comic and even though it’s from Marvel...and it’s a mini-series...and it’s a focusing on a fringe character I still think that Zeb Wells and Clayton Crain’s Carnage USA #1 could be a winner. Only a few nights ago I was asked by other members of the Paradox Comics Group if I would be picking this up because I tend to take a closer look at Spider-Man related titles than most of the other guys but I was quite ambivalent about the endeavour. Taking a look down the release list though, I came across it again and decided to have a look at some of the preview art, and, well, Crain’s one heck of an illustrator! That cover alone is something special and it looks like the the coming four are pretty decent as well. Carnage has never been one of the Spider-Man rogues gallery that has really appealed but, once again, Zeb Wells is a very good writer who does get into the mind of a Spider-villain and the combination of positives surrounding this book has seen it shoehorn its way onto my pull-list.

One title that’s managing to play with the big boys on said list is a comic that I had at one time suspected would maybe only last a handful of issues before being dropped. Now, Tom Morello’s Orchid #3 is out and I find myself looking forward to what potentially lethal adventures the unlikely team of Orchid, Simon and Yehzu will find themselves neck deep in this time. There seems to be a wealth of history that Morello is yet to delve into in this dystopian wasteland and he’s done a good job of ending each issue with a tantalising question. Provided that level of tension and intrigue can be maintained for the most part, I do believe that Dark Horse could end up with a series of critical acclaim in their catalogue.

Praise and plaudits have been heaped upon many of the DC titles of late and I’m certainly glad to see just how much of that appreciation has been pointed in the direction of Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason for what they have produced so far in the crime fighting exploits of Bruce and Damian Wayne. Last issue ended on an almost unbearable cliffhanger as father and son found themselves in the clutches of NoBody who was about to give the pair a cinematic lesson of some sort. In Batman and Robin #4 I suspect some twisted truths and secrets to possibly be revealed and we’ll hopefully get more of an insight into a villain that poses a real threat to the dynamic duo’s partnership. I’ve done a little digging and it certainly seems that NoBody is another new villain brought into being by Tomasi and, following his previous success with White Knight, it seems that he’s got a magic touch when it comes to interesting character creations.

Image have had something of a magic touch themselves this year and one of their true successes comes to its conclusion today. Owen Wiseman and Nam Kim have produced some fine, fine work on their tale of betrayal and revenge in feudal Japan and things will finally reach a head when we all get to delve into Samurai’s Blood #6. The three teenagers, Jun, Katashi and Mayuko have had a torrid time of things since their family and clan were brutally cut down and while revenge is on the cards I’m wondering just how simple or complicated this final chapter will prove to be. Wiseman has shown that while he can deliver a straightforward, simmering tale of samurai vengeance well, he’s also demonstrated a knack for throwing the odd surprise into the mix. Whatever the outcome of the blood-letting to come, I’m expecting happiness and joy to be in short supply!

And while I’m talking of an absence of such ingredients, you can bet your bottom dollar (or any dollars you happen to have hanging around - bookies don’t seem to be fussy!) that Uncanny X-Force #18 is likely to be a marvellous display of sombre despair. The Dark Angel Saga has been once of the unmissable arcs of 2011 and there’s part of me that doesn’t want to see it end/ There’s just something so compelling about the Rick Remender and Jerome Opena combination and I’m positive that it’s been their collaboration that has earned Uncanny X-Force the prestigious Best Ongoing Title award at this years Paradox ‘Oscars’. Remender has certainly brought a level of phenomenal danger and tension into a book that by all accounts should be held back by the longevity and near-immortal status of its cast. He’s even managed to get me believing that Wolverine may not be able to pull himself together at certain moments and when a writer is accomplishing that sort of comic book feat then you know you’re in the presence of greatness!

1 comment:

Tom P said...

The Strain #1 (of 11) £0.80, that is all.