In regards to this week's releases, the big news maker has to be Grant Morrison's and Frank Quitely's Batman and Robin #1. I had some issues with the latter half of Morrison's run on Batman previously, but am still going to be checking out this book.
Other noteworthy books include the final issue of Ultimate Spider-Man, another chapter in the excellent War of Kings event and the much anticipated Superman vs Green Lantern showdown in World of New Krypton. You can read my thoughts about these and more after the jump.
BATMAN AND ROBIN #1
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Frank Quitely
"Batman Reborn" begins here! With the reunited team of Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely (ALL-STAR SUPERMAN, WE3,New X-Men), this first issue kicks off a 3-part story arc that can't be missed! The new Dynamic Duo hit the streets with a bang in their new flying Batmobile as they face off against an assemblage of villains called the Circus of Strange. They also tackle their first mission investigating a child who's been abducted by the mysterious Domino Killer. But will everything go smoothly? And who exactly are the new Batman and Robin? The newest era of The Dark Knight begins here!
Kirk: I really didn't care for the tail end of Morrison's Batman run. I think around the end of the League of Batmen story arc everything just went south with Morrison opting for a rather meta, "connective tissue"-less storytelling method. I haven't re-read his run yet, and I'm sure it reads better in trade format, so I'm a little apprehensive going into his return on the book, but am looking forward to seeing how he handles Dick Grayson, who was rarely seen during his run on the title. If he can capture some of the magic of his opening arcs on Batman, this could be great.
CAPTAIN BRITAIN AND MI13 ANNUAL #1
Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Michael Collins
Meggan is Captain Britain's wife, an X-Man in Hell. And she's going to fight her way home. Over years, bargains, battles, with only her love to guide her. Can she get back to Earth in time to help her husband turn back Dracula and his evil invasion? And is that a metal gauntlet offering a hand? Don’t miss this key part of “Vampire State”! Plus: MI13 delves into the secrets behind British Magic.
Kirk: Horrible Greg Land cover aside, this should be another stellar issue from Cornell and the Captain Britain crew. Just hope it doesn't turn into the typical trip to the after life to talk with the loved one story. Getting vibes of an old Thunderbolts annual with Hawkeye and Mockingbird (she got better) on this one and fear it might be as out of place and uneventful as that annual was.
DARK AVENGERS #5
Written by Brian Bendis
Art by Mike Deodato
When the public is reminded of Norman's terrible past, Norman's wheeling and dealing becomes a public concern. Plus, some of the Avengers are getting frisky with each other, and that can't be good. Plus the return of...the Cabal!
Kirk: I imagine the frisky people will be Moonstone and Noh-Var based on last issues backside checking out by Noh-Var. Them or maybe Venom and Bullseye. I sense some dark passion hidden between.
NEW AVENGERS: THE REUNION #4
Written by Jim McCann
Art by David Lopez
The red-hot reunion reaches its explosive conclusion with part four, The Avenger Who Came in From the Cold. Secrets are revealed, literal bombs are dropped, and an emotional choice forever alters the course of both Ronin and Mockingbird's lives. Don’t miss the book Comic Book Resources says has "everything one might want in an intelligently written adventure comic. There are secrets and lies, trusts and betrayals, and more. If you want action, there's plenty of action."
Kirk: I received another advance copy of this and will have a review up tomorrow for it, but, as always, am also purchasing my own copy on Wednesday.
While some continuity sticklers might poke and prod at every little detail of Mockingbird's return, I've found McCann to be doing an excellent job at least trying to explain her return and the story has been a lot of fun. There's some great chemistry between Hawkeye and Mockingbird and it's been a great little romp (although it's not perfect and does have its faults at times as well).
SECRET SIX #10
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Nicola Scott and Doug Hazlewood
Where have all the forgotten heroes and villains of the DCU been? The Six are blackmailed by someone claiming to be their old boss, Mockingbird, into a brand-new mission taking them into the heart of the metahuman slave trade! And former Wonder Woman Artemis returns in the most brutal Secret Six story yet! Find out why Wizard Magazine says, "If you're not reading this book, you should be."
Kirk: Probably the best DC book at present or just slightly behind Green Lantern Corps for the honour in my opinion. Like that Wizard quote says, if you're not reading this book, you should be.
SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #4
Written by James Robinson and Greg Rucka
Art by Pete Woods
A new planet suddenly appearing in any space sector would demand the scrutiny of the Green Lantern Corps. When the planet in question is New Krypton and the space sector is 2814, it means Kandor City gets a visit from Hal Jordan and John Stewart, with Daxamite Sodam Yat along for good measure. But what starts as a good-will mission soon becomes a manhunt for some of the Phantom Zone's most deranged and dangerous criminals and leads ultimately to dire conflict between the Corps and Zod's Military Guild – with Superman caught in the middle!
Kirk: I've been looking forward to this issue since Rucka teased the Superman vs Green Lantern fight back at one of the cons several months ago.
However, I wonder if they will even fight or if it's just going to be a few punches with the odd red shirt Zod follower and then Superman and Hal breaking up the fights. I've been losing interest in the New Krypton/World Without Superman stories, but this issue might pull me back in for the long run.
ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #133
Written by Brian Bendis
Art by Stuart Immonen
The end of an era? The last issue of Ultimate Spider-Man? Peter Parker is Spider-Man no more? Is Spider-Man dead and gone in the events of Ultimatum? This final issue will leave you jaw-on-the-floor shocked at the turn of every page!
Kirk: Hard to call it a final issue when we have a requiem issue coming up and a new series ready to launch as soon as Ultimatum ends. It's more of a renumbering then anything. I imagine Spider-Man dies in this issue or the next Ultimatum issue with the whole Spider-Man RIP cover floating around and Loeb's systematic destruction of everything good at Marvel. They'll probably just restart the whole universe with Ultimate Comics.
WAR OF KINGS #4
Written by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning
Art by Paul Pelletier
The Shi’Ar/Inhuman war reaches its most savage level yet! Emperor Vulcan goes for the kill strike, but does he have more enemies on the field of battle…or at home? Meanwhile, Black Bolt discovers that the Inhumans are not quite the happy family he thought they were! It’s explosive action and universe-changing twists from the DnA/Pelletier War Of Kings team that IGN.com calls "a versatile dream for science fiction and fantasy fans...event comics done right!"
Kirk: Last issue was amazing and the high point that set the knob to eleven of an already rocking series. Not sure how DnA can possibly follow up on it, but I'm definitely looking forward to it.