Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Post-Crisis Comic Book Previews for 03/10/10

We've got a much busier week for comics with many of our favourites showing up on our pull lists for this edition of the Post-Crisis Previews.  Titles like Elephantmen, Green Lantern Corps, Secret Six, Red Robin and more all drop this week.  

As always, these are merely our pull lists and thoughts and expectations for the issues in question.  Feel free to share with us your thoughts on the books you'll be buying, our picks or even suggest a book you think we should be reading and we'll try our best to at least check it out on the rack, if not pick it up if we've got some extra spending money.  Hit the jump for this week's previews.

Written by Mark Waid
Art by Paul Azaceta

The origin of the new Vulture! Who is he? Why does he prey on the city's criminals? And what extreme circumstance could possibly make Spider-Man even consider allying with a creature this deadly? The Gauntlet pits Spidey against his most dangerous foe yet!

Kirk: I really don't see the Vulture as anywhere near the most dangerous foe Spidey has faced in this Gauntlet buildup.  Sandman and Electro were both bigger threats than this.  That aside, hopefully this arc picks up the pace a bit.  Not feeling it at all.

Written by Bryan Q. Miller
Art by Lee Garbett

The RED ROBIN crossover begins here! When Tim Drake returns to Gotham City, the last person he expects to find in the Batcave is Stephanie Brown. But when Ra's al Ghul attacks on Batman’s closest allies, Red Robin and Batgirl will have to put the past aside to save Leslie Thompkins's life.

Ryan: This should be a ton of fun. After Bryan Q. Miller really kicked it up a notch with the last few issues featuring the newest Robin, I can’t wait to see his take on Damian’s predecessor in the first part of this crossover. Batgirl is quickly becoming one of DC’s strongest books and this issue could push it to that next level.

Written by Various
Art by Various

Want to know what it takes to break into Marvel Comics like these guys? Then look no further than this two-part book which is a must-have for anyone wanting to be a Comic Book Breakout Star! After traveling the globe and meeting scores of talented illustrators, intrepid writer, editor and talent manager C.B. Cebulski is giving twelve rising star artists the opportunity to do their breakout work at Marvel Comics! But not only will BREAKING INTO COMICS THE MARVEL WAY showcase the work of these up-and-comers, C.B. will also provide an insider's commentary on how these artists got their work seen and what it was that landed them the gig. And with step-by-step submission information and a sample Marvel Comics script, these books are MUST HAVES for anyone interested in doing their breakout work and breaking into the comics industry!

Ryan: I’m really on the fence about this one. As an aspiring writer (more on that in the future, hopefully), I’m always interested in advice for breaking into the industry, even if it is more geared towards artists like this is. I’m also really interested in seeing the work of the Chesterquest artists. The problem is, this is already a heavy week for me and it does come with a high price tag. I might have to wait for this to hit the discount bins!

Written by Duane Swierczynski
Art by Various

This is it. The conclusion of the time-hopping action thriller launched in the pages of ""Messiah CompleX."" After hopping around New York City in the past and near future, Cable and Hope are closer than ever to the present...which means that Bishop is more desperate than ever to stop them. No more hiding. No more plots. No more weapons. It's coming down to mutant vs. mutant in the subterranean tunnels of New York, and only one of them will make it back to Westchester alive. You will not want to miss this issue, which leads directly into the X-MEN: SECOND COMING crossover.

Ryan: While I don’t have a ton of interest in Cable’s battle with Bishop, I am looking forward to the X-Men: Second Coming storyline as a place to jump back into the X-titles after taking a few months off. This is going to come down to a in-store flip-through, though as this is really the opening shot of Second Coming, it might be coming home with me.

Written by Ed Brubaker
Art by Sean Phillips

It’s the action-packed and twist-filled finale of THE SINNERS as TRACY LAWLESS finds himself trapped between hardened killers who want to torture and kill him, and a tough Military Investigator who wants to bring him back to the Army in chains.

Ryan: Even though I’ve been disappointed in how the art from Sean Phillips has looked during this story arc, Ed Brubaker has really brought his a-game once again. The closing moments of every Criminal storyline have been the strongest for the series, so this is the easy frontrunner for Book of the Week.

Written by Richard Starkings
Art by Moritat

MORITAT returns for a new story arc that pits Elephantman against Elephantmen. Simm's secret has been revealed and all hell breaks loose!

Ryan: Oh Elephantmen, I have missed thee! It has been far too long since we have seen a new issue from this brilliant series, though it looks like Richard Starkings is going to make it up to us by bringing artist Moritat back on board with this one! You can expect pure awesomeness with this issue and you will not be disappointed. I guarantee it!

Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Patrick Gleason

Blackest Night comes to its epic and stunning conclusion in this over-sized issue as the Green Lantern Corps descends on Earth to make their final stand against Nekron and the Black Lanterns!

Kirk: The Anti-Monitor is showcased on the actual cover of this issue.  I think the variant shows Guy and Ice as well, so this issue has a lot of promise just based on the covers.  GLC has been the best Blackest Night title in my opinion, just barely edging out Green Lantern, so I can't wait to get my orange ring clad hands on this one.

Written by James Robinson and JT Krul
Art by Mike Mayhew

Following the stunning conclusion to JUSTICE LEAGUE: CRY FOR JUSTICE comes the next epic chapter for the World's Greatest Heroes. What controversial decision has created a split in the League? A new meaning to the term ""hunt for justice"" creates fear in the villain populace. Plus, a shocking secret is revealed that will change Green Arrow's life forever.

Ryan: From the original announcement up until last week, I was incredibly pumped for this storyline to kick off simply because I couldn’t wait to see JT Krul’s take on Green Arrow. Unfortunately, the sheer stupidity of the events of Cry for Justice (Roy Harper losing an arm, Star City being destroyed again, Green Arrow killing Prometheus, and perhaps most idiotic of them all, Lian Harper being brutally killed), I’m not sure if I want to have anything to do with this story. Green Arrow is my favorite non-Bat character in the DCU and this is his biggest storyline in years, but the story leaves such a bad taste in my mouth that I may just avoid it altogether!

Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Steve Dillon

“KINGPIN,” PART 5 Witness the birth of the Kingpin. And witness Frank Castle at his most desperate and brutal. The first arc of PUNISHERMAX concludes with death and murder and more death.

Kirk: PunisherMAX has been very good.  I know it's a $3.99 title, but I don't think you'll regret picking it up on a month to month basis, especially if you are displeased with Frankencastle for whatever reason.  Watching the buildup of the Kingpin in a "real world" setting (well, more so than the 616 universe at least) over this arc has been fantastic.  Definitely worth checking out in singles or trades.

Written by Chris Yost
Art by Marcus To

The Red Robin/Batgirl crossover continues as Ra's al Ghul targets everyone in Bruce Wayne's ""family"" for death – and only Red Robin and Batgirl can stop it. Except Batgirl's not so sure about Tim these days...especially once he starts working with one of Ra's' own assassins. Plus, Ra's al Ghul vs. Hush! Vicki Vale vs. Alfred! And Tam Fox continues her search only to run into even more trouble. Continued from this month's BATGIRL VOL 3 #8!

Ryan: I absolutely love this series and having it crossover with Batgirl makes me love it even more. This is going to be a ton of fun, especially considering we’ll get to see the always awesome Chris Yost take on the likes of Hush, who I’ve always really enjoyed.

Written by Gail Simone
Art by Jim Calafiore

Catman's past crawls back to haunt him as Cheshire returns! Could the secret she's carrying spell the end of the Secret Six?

Ryan: Chesire’s back? That right there is all the guarantee that I need to know that this is going to be yet another Must Read.

Kirk: It's Secret Six.  That's about the only reason I need to pick this up.  I wonder what Chesire will bring to this.  Maybe some connection to Cry for Jusice (Lian was hers and Arsenal's child)?  Deadshot had family in Star City that could connect up with that as well.  I dislike Cry for Justice, but think it would actually make sense for it to pick up some threads from it here. 

S.W.O.R.D. #5
Written by Kieron Gillen
Art by Steven Sanders

With Agent Brand imprisoned, all hell breaks loose! Norman Osborn and the Dark Avengers set out to destroy a group peaceful aliens while a war-like race is about to unleash the most intelligent and dangerous being in the universe! Now Brand herself is about to walk in a trap that could spell the end of everything she’s worked for…and her life!

Kirk: I love that cover.  I enjoy SWORD, too, but that cover is perfect.  Beta Ray Bill is in this issue and kicking ass and taking names.  Should be fun times.  Shame the series is ending, though.

Written by Mike Carey, Kieron Gillen, Ted McKeever & Peter Milligan
Art by Frank Brunner & Ted McKeever

It’s the Sorcerer Supreme versus the magical might of the political terrorist known as the Doktor! Stephen Strange struggles with a decision to help a man crippled by his worst memories! And the Master of the Mystic Arts battles a demon in the streets of New York! All this and more in this all-new, all-action, all-black-and-white one-shot in the spirit of the Mighty Marvel Magazines of yore, but ALL-NOW in style! The magical mayhem never lets up for a moment over these four stories by some of Marvel’s hottest creators!

Kirk: First I've heard of this issue when looking up my pull list for the week.  Not sure if any extra copies will be available since I didn't order this one, but look at the writers involved and tell me you aren't excited in the least for this and I shall call you a liar.  I'm not a fan of magic or Dr Strange in particular, but put talent like that behind it and I'm interested.  Not sure how this sleeped under my radar or why I'm only just now finding out about the existence of this book though.  Must have missed the news cycle it was announced/talked about.

Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Takeshi Miyazawa

Spider-Man and his amazing friends are there for the birth of a brand new hero!! Who is he? What is his name? Here's a hint: It's a name that will make you burst out in applause!! He's set to be major player in the Ultimate Universe, so be there as hotshot creators BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN) and TAKESHI MIYAZAWA (RUNAWAYS) bring you his big debut!

Ryan: Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man is always a staple for the upper end of the Rankings, but with the likes of Criminal, Elephantmen, and Secret Six also dropping this week, Bendis and Miyzawa are really going to bring it if they want to be #1. We already know that this new hero is Rick Jones, whose powers debuted last week, but it is going to take a bit more than that to take the Top Spot. And, no, making him the new Ultimate Silver Surfer (he is already being called a Herald by the Watchers) is not going to be enough either!

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brandon said...

PunisherMax's preview pages looked absolutely awesome. Grenades and horses....wow

Phillyradiogeek said...

I didn't know about the Dr. Strange BW one-shot either, but this is one in a series of books that Marvel is releasing in the spirit of the 70s magazines. An Iron Man one was released a month or so ago, and an Ares one-shot will release later this year.

I think they may have also come out with a Master of Kung-Fu one late last year.

Ivan said...

If only I could get my hands on 'Breaking into Comics the Marvel Way'... =/

Well, tough luck.

Anonymous said...

No B&R? I'm pretty sure DC lits B&R as #10 coming out this week ...

Radlum said...

'Breaking into Comics the Marvel Way' sounds interesting, at least as a way to support new artists and that cover looks nice, maybe I'll give this a try.

Ryan Schrodt said...

@Anonymous - I dropped Batman & Robin after issue #8. I just couldn't take it anymore. I'll come back once Morrison returns to form, but his output is just getting worse with each subsequent issue.

Ryan K Lindsay said...

I can't believe someone didn't know The Mystic Hands Of Doctor Strange was coming out; I wrote an awesome article about the Savage Marvel Magazine Format http://www.weeklycrisis.com/2010/02/marvels-savage-magazine-format.html Not that long ago.

If you're excited for this Doc Strange one then wait for next month when we get The Savage Axe of Ares. Gold, people, gold!

JP said...

If either of you guys have any spare money this week, may I suggest R.E.B.E.L.S. #14, it is the conculsion of the Starro arc, which is what began this book a little over a year ago. Featureing a battle royale between the R.E.B.E.L.S. and Starro.

Melissa said...

Ex Machina 48 for me!

PastorAarn said...

I love the cover art to Ultimate Spider-man. Very cool looking.

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