Monday, October 12, 2009
This week’s Previews include looks at the Good (Anna Mercury 2), the Bad (Judd Winick and Mark Bagley’s Batman) and the Ugly (Greg Land’s art on Uncanny X-Men), as well as the tremendously awesome (Secret Six) and the brand new (Phil Hester’s Anchor). If you are looking for my thoughts on these and more, hit the jump to see what I have to say!
Written by Phil Hester
Art by Brian Churilla
The Anchor. Holy warrior, unholy war. Freak of nature, beast of burden, hulking outcast, medieval prize fighter, Viking raider, God's leg-breaker. One thousand years ago a hulking outcast sought refuge in the crumbling ruins of an ancient monastery, offering in return the one thing he had to give — his fists. Transformed into an immortal warrior monk standing at the gates of Hell itself to keep our world free from its invading armies, The Anchor is mysteriously tricked into centuries of slumber. But today, this holy warrior rises to battle all the unholy monsters unleashed during his slumber. Cataclysmic action, quirky humor, and profound pathos for fans of Hellboy and The Goon.
Ryan: You had me intrigued at “Written by Phil Hester,” but you had me sold at “God’s leg-breaker!” I picked up an early-release copy of this from Hester at FallCon this past weekend and it looks great based on a flip-through. Despite having loads of talent, Hester is more known for his art than his writing, but I think that this series could definitely change that.
Written by Warren Ellis
Art by Facundo Percio
Anna Mercury is back in this summer’s biggest epic! Warren Ellis’ fiery red-head returns to once again explode into mad science-fiction action with the stellar art of Facundo Percio, returning from the smash-hit original series! Anna Mercury is wounded and trapped in the security ministry of Three Souls Town, a city hanging in the weird Constellation outside the universe itself. She thinks they're insane, they think she's an agent of destruction. Neither of them realize something worse is on the way: ULTRASPACIAL DREADNOUGHT VANAHEIM and Space Vikings!
Ryan: It’s been so long since the last issue came out that I’ll definitely need to refresh my memory by re-reading #1. However, once I’m back on top of things, I know I can expect more of the usual high-concept sci-fi action that the series is known for. This is definitely one of the biggest releases of the week for me.
Written by Bryan Q. Miller
Art by Lee Garbett
It’s a new look and a new costume for the all-new Batgirl! As crime in Gotham City continues to rise, the newest member of the Bat-family vows to wear the mantle of the Bat and fight alongside Batman and Robin in their war on crime. There’s just one problem: She hasn’t told Batman and Robin yet!
Ryan: We’ve only seen flashes of Batman and Robin’s reaction to the new Batgirl, so it will be interesting to see how they react in full to Stephanie Brown taking up the mantel—especially considering they have both taken over their roles from other heroes as well. If Bryan Q. Miller continues to write the characters as strongly as he has in the first two issues, this could be a very strong issue.
Written by Judd Winick
Art by Mark Bagley
BATMAN double-ships this month as Two-Face and the new Batman throw down in the Batcave. And the fight is a vicious one, but just as Two-Face begins to get the upper hand...Batman shows up? The final chapter of Dick Grayson's first adventure as Batman is a can't-miss!
Ryan: Judd Winick and Mark Bagley’s Batman has been one of the few weak links in the post-RIP Bat-franchise, so I’m glad to see their run on the title finishing up this month. Last issue saw Two-Face break into the Batcave using the most a teleporter that fails to make sense even by comic book logic standards, then dress up as his own version of Batman to attack Dick Grayson. So…umm…at least the standards aren’t too high for this issue?
Written by Dan Jurgens and Matthew Sturges
Art by Dan Jurgens and Mike Norton
“Day of Dead” concludes as Booster Gold battles Black Beetle in the past and jumps through time to team up with the new Batman and Robin in the future. But how are these events connected – and what is the Black Beetle really after?
Then, in Blue Beetle, Jaime Reyes must stop the Blue Beetle scarab from trying to kill him...and everyone else on the planet Earth!
Ryan: I’d still rather see this series be a Blue Beetle book with a Booster Gold backup, but the lead story has steadily improved with each issue, bringing the book back up to the levels of awesomeness it enjoyed when Geoff Johns was at the helm.
Written by Various
Art by Various
Special SUPER-sized, ACTION-packed 104-page special to commemorate Deadpool’s historic 900th issue! ... Wait, has it really been nine-hundred issues...? Who cares! If this collection of octane-infused stories by some of comics’ hottest talent doesn’t make you want to genuflect at the Altar of Wade, nothing will. Thrill as the Merc with a Mouth squares off against probe-happy aliens, trigger-happy mimes and one seriously unhappy fanman – and that’s just half the book! Wince as Wade bares his soul (and lots more) to a shrink who’s got major squirrels in his own attic. Thrill as he travels around the globe and then some to settle a childhood bet. And chill as C.S.I. investigators at a blood-splattered crime scene attempt to piece together why this particular “unsub” needed battery cables, Crisco oil, three stacks of adult magazines and a live chicken to pull off the hit.
Ryan: Over the years, I’ve tried really, really hard to get into Deadpool, but the Merc with a Mouth has never really caught on with me. I’m hoping that somewhere in the midst of this massive 100+ page “anniversary” issue will be something that will help me understand why Deadpool is enjoying such a massive increase in popularity these days.
Written by Christopher Yost
Art by Pasqual Ferry
Dragon Army has been training non-stop for their first battle, and they're about to get it. But what Ender doesn't know is that the deck is stacked against them and everyone is gunning for Ender, from the students to the teachers. Even with Bean's help, can Ender win against unbeatable odds? And Ender's anger at his teachers has consequences...murderous consequences.
Ryan: As great as the first miniseries was, Chris Yost and Pasqual Ferry really upped the ante with the first issue of the follow-up last month. On one hand, that is a great thing as it puts a lot of momentum behind this issue; on the flipside, it might be hard for this week’s issue to live up to last issue’s incredibly high standards.
Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Art by Patrick Gleason
The intense and horrific battle between the Green Lantern Corps and the Black Lanterns on Oa takes a turn for the worse! The Corps realizes that the abominable, ultimate goal of the Black Lanterns is not only to feed off the Corps’ emotions, but to consume and decimate the main power battery and destroy Oa forever!
Ryan: I’m glad to see that the Black Lanterns have an actual goal in mind, as the lack of movement in the entire Blackest Night story was starting to turn the even prematurely stale. This one should be almost all action, so I look forward to Pat Gleason directing the flow of the book with his always-excellent art.
Written by Chris Yost
Art by Ramon Bachs
Ra's al Ghul goes from hunter to hunted! What is the Council of Spiders, why have they been killing assassins, and who is the Wanderer? After the death of Red Robin last issue, the League of Assassins now must – wait, WHAT? Everything shifts into insane overdrive as the daughter of Wayne Enterprises CEO Lucius Fox completes her quest to find Red Robin, only to get caught up in one of the deadliest games on the face of the planet.
Ryan: It took me until the third or fourth time reading this solicitation to see that it claims that Red Robin died last issue. Since we all know that Tim probably isn’t dead, it makes me wonder what else we shouldn’t trust about this solicit. Hmm…
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Nicola Scott
The shattering conclusion to “The Depths” is here! The Six find themselves pitted against Artemis, Wonder Woman and the hideous secret being from deep within the new Devil's Island!
Ryan: Once again, I’d have to say that this is the book to beat this week. Honestly, this series is so good that, as long as Gail Simone and Nicola Scott are the creative team, I really don’t pay that much attention to the solicits. I know the book is going to be amazing, no matter what it is about.
Written by Matt Fraction
Art by Greg Land
Ryan: As cool as the return of Magneto could be, especially since the X-Men are now using the floating remains of Asteroid M as the newest version of Genosha, I know that the issue can only be so enjoyable since Greg Land’s horrible “referenced art” is going to ruin anything cool that Matt Fraction does with the story.