New comics are due to hit the shelves on Wednesday so here’s a look ahead at some of the books we’ll be picking up this week. To see what’s available at Paradox this week, click here.
Matt C: It's full steam ahead with the All-New Marvel NOW! initiative as a handful of 'new' titles make their debut this week, but in all honesty the only one that's really caught my eye is the relaunch of Punisher. The last time I had real interest in the character was via Garth Ennis' harder-edged, out-of-continuity MAX series and following that - an excellent cameo in Brubaker's Daredevil run aside - having him back in regular continuity never really appealed to me. That could perhaps change by having the guys behind the gritty, authentic black-ops Image book, The Activity, take charge of proceedings. Nathan Edmondson and Mitch Gerards have done a fine job on that title (which, coincidently, has gone AWOL of late, unless it came to an end while I wasn't looking!) which bodes well for Punisher #1, although my caveat is that I wasn't that taken with Edmondson's Black Widow #1. We shall see. I guess the other major highlight for me this Wednesday is Lazarus #6 from Image, which is an exquisitely fine series, one that I haven't heard a bad word said about it by anyone. Which isn't to say no one's said a bad word about, but who the heck would want to listen to them anyway??
Stewart R: It's all about Punisher #1 this week really, isn't it?! That cover looks superb and gritty, we know the talent now holding the reigns have pedigree from their previous work and I'm starting to get the slightest hint that the hottest Marvel properties these days are not the slew of Avengers or X-Men related titles that perhaps are now creaking to that point somewhere beyond their recent best, but instead those off-centre, street level stories and characters not currently constrained by live-action, big screen versions of themselves. Certainly Frank Castle is a character with bags and bags of potential (not to mention guns) and I'm really looking forward to seeing how his West Coast relocation pans out. While we're talking about those off-centre Marvel books, The Superior Foes of Spider-Man continues to be one of my favourite reads each and every month and the hilariously convoluted web of lies, double-crossing, family-ties and low-grade super villainy has been a pure delight every time with no sign of the fun stopping. Elsewhere around the block I'll definitely be sinking my eyes into Aphrodite IX #8 from Top Cow's Matt Hawkins and Stjepan Sejic as it's guaranteed to be one of the best looking books on the shelf this week and Hawkins' science-fiction plot is an intriguing and enthralling view of war fuelled by religion and technology. Lastly I feel I must mention Hinterkind #5. Ian Edginton is crafting the sort of story - rich in character AND fantasy adventure - that I could seriously see snapped up and adapted for the small screen if it continues on in such vein and I'd be surprised if this latest issue wasn't up the same sterling standard as its predecessors.