At Marvel, things take a turn for the worse (metaphorically or literally? U-Decide!) as Dark Reign continues to expand with Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men: Utopia mini event getting into full swing and other various Dark Reign tie-ins continue. There's also the mysterious Reborn #1 with only the writer and artist announced, consisting of Ed Brubaker and Bryan Hitch.
Hit the jump to find out what we thought of the various offerings in these solicits.
Dethklok vs. The Goon
Eric: I find this most curious. I watched a couple of seasons of Dethklok on Cartoon Network and it had it moments but I've never read anything Goon related. There is also going to be a Dethklok comic so if this is collected with it it I may check out the first trade for the novelity of it all. Also, I expect this to sell well considering that is probably going to be advertised during [adultswim]'s programming blocks.
Matt: My thought process upon coming across this solicitation went something like this -"That's a stupid titlOHMYGOD LOOK AT THE TEAM BEHIND IT". It seriously is a "Who's Who" of modern crime comics (with the notorious exception of Jason Aaron), so I will definitely be picking this up.
Eric: Not even Mark Bagley can get me to buy a Judd Winick book! Since Bagley is only the "guest artist" for the arc, I'm really interested on what his next project is going to be.
Kirk: Similar to Stuart Immonen on New Avengers, Bagley's talents are wasted on this title. Why go to all the trouble of relaunching most of the Batman titles and then stick Judd Winick on the book?
In regards to Bagley, it looks like DC had artist problems and were looking at delays, so brought in Bagley to fill-in and get the book back on track moreso than actually giving him a high profile Batman book. It's the only way I can explain the coming in on the second part of this storyline to finish it up.
Matt: Poor Bagley, he's constantly being called in to pick up the slack from other writer's delays.
Blackest Night & Green Lantern Books
Kirk: Is DC really willing to revive Bruce Wayne as a Black Lantern? And how will that even work? "Bruce Wayne" isn't dead. He's just on vacation and shouldn't have a grave. And why does a bazillionaire have such an unassuming headstone? And what about Batman in the past with Anthro? I know Superman held his corpse in Final Crisis, but he looked the same on that last page. I would honestly applaud DC if they did make him a Black Lantern. It would be the first time marketing and Warner Bros didn't dictate what they could do with their own characters.
On a more sour note, shame on you DC for the variant cover policies. 1-in-25 is better than the 1-in-250 variant for Batman and Robin #1, but, goddamn it, do they want a 90's variant craze/market crash or what?
Matt: Ugh, really, DC? How does the Black Hand even know that Bruce Wayne is Batman? I'm hoping this is just a teaser and will have nothing to do with the actual content of the issue. If we get a "reason" behind all of the deaths and returns of the DC universe, this may prove to be either the stupidest or greatest crossover ever. Jury's still out.
However, I do have to say, that's a pretty awesome Green Lantern Corps cover. I'm actually looking forward to what this title is going to be doing with Blackest Night than the main Green Lantern title.
Finally, I would have preferred if the Tales of the Corps title was offered as a back-up, similar to what they did with the Sinestro Corps members pre-Sinestro Corps War. I'm not sure if I will pick this up.
Gotham City Sirens #2
Kirk: I loved what Dini did with Hush in his final arc on Detective and, as hard as it is to believe, I'm looking forward to this title more than any other from the Batman books come summer time. Yes, even more than Morrison and Quitely on Batman and Robin. Can't wait to see the reunion between Catwoman and Hush.
Greek Street #1
Eric: Oh my god, YES! I was looking forward to this series and now I can't wait for it! It is everything I was hoping for and more. I'm a huge fan of mythology so I may be a bit biased. Oh, and for those of you who don't know, the solicit is a pretty accurate description of Greek mythology (I'm a huge history buff). And the issue is 40 pages for only $1.
Matt: I had not heard about this until just now, but it sounds absolutely great. And I have to agree with Eric, $1 for the first issue pretty much guarantees I will be buying this.
North 40 #1
Eric: The first of several new creator owned series to launch from Wildstorm. I'm looking forward to it and here is a link to a interview about the series if you are interested.
Kirk: That Joshua Middleton cover is absolutely beautiful and doesn't have to resort to making Supergirl look like a slut. Even her proportions are toned down in it. DC and other artists should take note of this.
Kirk: Rafael Albuquerque on art is almost enough to get me to pick this up. Combined with his guest-pencilling on Captain America #600, it looks like he's getting the recognition he deserves.
Eric: This arc sounds fantastic. I've heard mixed things about Green's and Johnson's run so I'm hoping this turns out good. Now, all we need is a Damian Wayne and Chris Kent team up!
The Outsides #20
Eric: What's this?! A follow up on a Final Crisis plot line? Definitely buying the trade now.
Wednesday Comics #1-4
Eric: I'm surprised by the fact that my head has not exploded from the seer amount of awesomeness this series will have. I can't think of a single story from there I'm not looking forward to on some level. I may even have to buy this in singles! And then get the HC!
Kirk: While I'm very interested in the talent attached to the project, and as I made known on my Twitter account when these first went up, I have some serious concerns with the pricing. $3.99 is a hefty pricetag for a monthly. DC is giving it to us on a weeklyon-standard/experimental comic. Er, scratch that. Basically a weekly newspaper that's only 16 pages. The pages are larger than typical comic book dimensions, but that doesn't make it any less hard a pill to swallow. I can take the odd single issue or event book that's $3.99 and justify it. A weekly might be too much to bear, especially if it ends up as 'weakly' as the last few weekly offerings.
Matt: I'm only interested in some of the creative teams behind this, and like Kirk said, it feels like a huge bet on DC's part and I guess many people will not be purchasing this. Had they done it after the critical and commercial success of 52, it would be a complete different story.
Wonder Woman #34
Eric: No mention of the Manazons (I refuse to call them anything else). Really? Eight issues for what is looking like no pay off. From what I understand, the Manazon's were created because Wonder Woman had failed her mission, where part of an arc what was supposed to be Wonder Woman's R.I.P/New Krypton and now, nothing. I mean, come on! No hint as to the future of Wonder Woman other than business as normal. If DC introduced the Manazons for basically no reason then I'm going to be speechless. Well, not really, but you get the idea.
All-New Savage She-Hulk #4
Eric: More overblown hyping, but I can't help but look forward to the eventually trade. Van Lente is a solid writer and I'm definitely interested in the concept behind the book. I wonder if this will lead to a new ongoing? I may be interested in one depending on how this mini turns out.
Amazing Spider-Man #600
Kirk: I remember when these big anniversary issue specials used to thrill me as a child. I wonder when I became so jaded. Probably the 90's. Recent renumberings have diluded the appeal, too. I'm probably still going to pick this up to see what the Brand New Day era team can do with a classic villain like Doc Ock. This will most likely be the last time I pick up a random issue of Amazing Spider-Man. Well, unless they bring back the Scarlet Spider, ahaha.
Matt: Considering this is written by Slott, I can imagine that there will be plenty of in-your-face jokes about One More Day. Definitely still not picking up this series.
Avengers: The Initiative #26
Kirk: Well, here's the new status quo - the Hood and Taskmaster are the new headmasters of the Initiative and Osborn's training an army of villains to play heroes while the former Initiative teams go on the run. I have my doubts, as Osborn is shown to be an altruistic hero in some books, and thinks he's actually saving the world, while he is shown here to be planting villains across the globe. I'll stick around for a few more issues to see how it plays out, but I'm a little apprehensive about my future with this book, even with this new direction finally ending months of treading water.
Matt: Wooo! This book has good art again.
Kirk: Hey, good to know Messiah War accomplishes nothing and Cable and Hope are A-OK.
Eric: I'm trying to think of a more bleak and depressing book out there right now, but I can't. Well, maybe X-Force.
Captain Britain & MI13 #15
Matt: Is that a parody of that recent Captain America cover by Steve Epting? That was certainly fast.
Dark Reign: The Sinister Spider-Man #2
Eric: If Bachalo is actually the artist on the series (Barry Kitson was originally announced as the artist), I may have to buy it. Hopefully Reed can come up with a halfway decent story if that is the case.
Dark X-Men: The Beginning #1 & 2
Eric: So, despite what Marvel said, it does look like Dark X-Men is going to be a new series. How not shocking. Depending on who writes it, I may try it out. It is nice to have Dark Beast show up again, but who is Weapon X?
Kirk: There was a guy named Garrison Kane that went by the codename Weapon X. He appeared in some old Wolverine comics, but I don't know all that much about him. According to Wikipedia, there's also another guy going by that codename who was a New Zealand terrorist and is wearing a power suit that generates energy fields to contain some bacteria colony nonsense, but it's the first I've heard of the second one.
Fantastic Four #569
Matt: Woah, Immonen again? Is this a typo or did he replace Hitch when I wasn't looking?
Eric: Nice catch. I completely missed that the first time around. I guess Marvel would rather have Hitch working on Reborn (see below). This is going to look odd when its collected even though I think Immonen is a better FF artist than Hitch. Still, I'd rather have a delayed Hitch issue than an on time Immonen issue in order to keep the visual feel of the book the same.
Immortal Weapons #1
Kirk: I gave Duane Swierczynski's Immortal Iron Fist a chance, but it lost the magic that Fraction and Brubaker had with the book. However, that's not going to stop me from giving this bad boy a shot. Jason Aaron? Fat Cobra? The rest of the Immortal Weapons? I can't see how this could be any better
Eric: I've been waiting for this series for a while but I was hoping it would be by Matt Fraction. Jason Aaron doing a Fat Cobra issue isn't a bad consolation prize though. I hope that when Marvel does relaunch Iron Fist that they put a big name artist on the title for the first arc to a sales bump.
Matt: Super stoked about this, and definitely looking forward to the Jason Aaron-penned Fat Cobra.
Incredible Hercules #131
Eric: So I guess Herc is going to be adjective-less now? Also, if Amadeus Cho leaves the title, I may have to stop buying it since the buddy aspect is really what made the book work.
Kirk: I doubt Cho is leaving. Probably just something to do with being Athena's new champion. That last line in the solicit, combined with Incredible Hulk's return, does seem to signal the end of "Incredible" Hercules.
Incredible Hulk #600
Eric: What. The. F@#$!!!! Loeb is bringing Spider-Man into this utterly horrid comic?! Who allowed this? And why? I repeat, WHY!? What the hell is Spider-Man doing in this comic? This is some sort lame marketing related thing, isn't it? What the hell is Spidey going to do against the Red Hulk (I refuse to use the abomination of a name Loeb came up for the character)? Thor lost, badly, and Spidey is somehow supposed to do better than the string of characters that came before him? Although, this does fit the random and meaningless guest star style that Loeb often uses. So in closing, who the hell's idea was this and why was it allowed?
Kirk: Same reason Marvel let's Loeb do anything - $$$
Matt: HULK LOVES ALL CAPS!
Marvel Divas #1
You get the sassiest, sexiest, soapiest series to come out of the House of Ideas since Millie the Model! Romance, action, ex-boyfriends, and a last page that changes everything! Let your inner divas out with this one, fellas, you won't regret it!Kirk: Who the hell is Marvel marketing this book towards? Combined with the nonsense they spouted off when they first announced it in their MyCup O'Joe column (I spoke a little about it here), it's like they are trying to alienate both male and female alike. It really feels like Marvel saw DC with the Gotham Sirens book and decided they absolutely needed their own version of a "femme fatale" (god I hate that adjective) book and rushed this nonsensical Divas book out.
Matt: At this point, I think that I am about the only one potential reader that Marvel's solicitations have not insulted yet. I really like Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, which is why I'm looking forward to this.
Eric: I'm not offended Matt, I just don't care is all.
Ms. Marvel #41 & 42
Eric: Carol Danvers is alive! Shocking! No, not really, especially after her "death." This is why Marvel's marketing is so laughable nowadays. They act as though no one was expecting this and should be genuinely surprised, but at least they are not doing some sort of hip, self aware kind of thing. Actually, I can't decide which would be worse - Marvel acting as though people should be surprised by any of this or them trying to be annoyingly self aware about it and trying to make themselves seem cool.
Also, "Guest staring the New Avengers and...someone we can't tell you about!" doesn't work when the character is on the cover. Just so you know Marvel.
New Avengers #55
Eric: It's sad to see Stuart Immonen wasted on such a worthless book. At least it raises his profile and he may get put on a book that will be worth reading at some point in the future. Oh, the Avengers and Hood fight, for the 4,891th time.
Kirk: Agreed. I love Immonen and am happy to see him getting such a high profile book (maybe he'll follow in Yu's footsteps and headline the next big event?), but I can't help but feel he's wasting his talents on this title. ANOTHER Hood and his gang fight? What the hell, Bendis?
Matt: "One of the Hood's gang has found a way to power drain the New Avengers"! Umm... what power? One of the longest running points in this series is that this team is the underdog, even when they had Strange with them
Kirk: Looks like Steve Rogers is back. Sigh. Either that or Red Skull and Arnim Zola managed to use the time platform to pull Sharon Carter's and Cap's baby into the future or a random Steve Rogers from the past at some point. As Brubaker is no longer doing Uncanny X-Men, he may be doing a Phoenix Reborn series. Rachel Grey did recently lose the Phoenix Force...
Eric: While I agree that is probably Steve coming back, it could possibly be something else. I was guessing that Cap's return would be much closer to the launch of the movie and I'm going to say that is this might be related to the Marvel's Project by Brubaker and Epting. Of course, its still 99.9% likely that is Steve's return.
Also, "Solicit to be revealed soon" is more annoying than "Classified Information."
Matt: NO NO NO. This better be about "Operation: Rebirth" or something like that and not about Cap coming back, or else I will be pretty damn mad. Too bad I can't stay angry at Brubaker.
Uncanny X-Men #513
Eric: Sigh...it has finally arrived. The day that the last vestiges of Morrison's New X-Men run are abandoned and the status-quo ante fully restored. Emma Frost is going to be kicked off the team and break up with Scott who shall go back to Jean Grey once she finally returns from the dead. At least I was expecting this. Oh well, I still have all of Morrison's excellent run to reread at my pleasure and marvel at how it makes all other X-Men runs look bad.
Matt: I wonder who the Dark X-Men are. Oh wait, the answer is in the solicit right above "Emma Frost, Mimic, Cloak & Dagger, Daken, Weapon X and Dark Beast" *sigh*
Uncanny X-Men: First Class #1
Kirk: I've heard nothing but good things about the First Class titles, but never really got into them for whatever reason. With the inclusion of the Inhumans and the focus on the second generation of X-Men, I just might have to take the leap and grab this title.
War of Kings: Warriors #1
Eric: I could of sworn this was supposed to be an online-only comic, which isn't mentioned at all in the solicit. I wonder if their other online-only or online first content was doing so badly they scrapped the idea? If so, it does not bode well for Spider-Girl.
Kirk: These were, in fact, online-only books when they were announced at one of the cons back in February. My guess is, like Spider-Girl, they'll be online "exclusive" for a few months and then appear in print.
Absolute New Frontier Reprinting
Kirk: Yes, yes, yes, yes, YESSSSSSSSS! It's about goddamn time DC grew a brain and reprinted this. It's only the best comic published in the last decade and a true celebration of the Silver Age without wallowing in it like other writers have been known to do. I've been looking for a new copy of the Absolute for what seems like forever and couldn't find it for under $150US or so (plus shipping, which would run $20 or so for that child crushing size and weight). My search can finally end and I'll be reserving a copy of this new printing next time I'm at the shop.
Amazing Spider-Man By JMS Ultimate Collection Vol 1 TBP
Eric: YES!!! I love these collections! Marvel must print more of them! Bendis' Daredevil must be next. As for the JMS's ASM, I generally liked his run from what little I've read. His work with JRJR seemed to be the strongest even though you could feel the editorial influence at times. I'll definitely get all of these collections that have JRJR's artwork, but probably not the rest of his run.
Authority: World's End Book One TPB
Eric: Though I'd point this out. It's by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, currently in charge of Marvel's cosmic books, and it collects the first half of their 15 issue run. Definitely worth a look.
Batman: Hush TPB
Eric: Despite my utter loathing towards this story, I'm happy to see this for two reasons. 1) DC is releasing a After The Watchmen issue for Batman #608 (WHY!?), so this will provide an easier access point for new fans and 2) it might mean there will be a complete collection for Superman: For Tomorrow as well.
Ghost Rider: Trials and Tribulations TBP
Eric: Its nice to see more of Aaron's Ghost Rider run finally out, but the issue listing has to be wrong. Only issues #33-35 and an Annual? What happened to issues #26-32? There isn't a trade for Aaron's run out that collects those issues.
Fables Deluxe Edition Vol One HC
Kirk: Ohhh, I have the first few trades of Fables (up to around the Boy Blue arc), but may have to rethink the purchasing of future trades in favour of the inevitable hardcovers (yes, I'm a sucker for hardcover versions, especially if it's oversized).
Marvel 1985 TBP
Eric: I've heard mixed things about this mini but its by Mark Millar so I'm buying. Sounds like an interesting idea and all of Millar's Marvel work is supposed to connect somehow, or that was the original plan. Its also nice to see Millar try and write something outside of his usual fare.
Tom Strong Deluxe Edition Book One HC
Eric: I'm really torn on whether or not I want to get this. I have the first trade of the series already, which collections the first seven issues of the series, and I have no idea if DC is even going to collect the whole series like this. If they do, I'm definitely buying them and I really hope they do something similar for Promethea but given that it is getting a Absolute edition, I'm not getting my hopes up. I do hope DC does continue with these Deluxe Edition trades (one for Fables was also solicited) and that they release them in a timely, and I repeat, timely, manner.
Umbrella Academy Vol 2, Dallas
Eric: This is an oversized, limited edition HC and I'm incredibly tempted to buy it ,but, luckily, there is an $80 price tag to kill that temptation. The regular edition is coming out in October, which can't get here fast enough.
Matt: Good god, that's an overpriced collection. Who is such a fan of this series, that was not following it on singles already, to be willing to spend eighty dollars on a six-issue (plus extras) collection? I'm with Eric on this one, definitely waiting for the cheaper paperback.
Kirk: To be fair, it'll be like $40 on Amazon.