Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Post-Crisis Comic Book Previews for 06/30/10

Welcome to this week's Post-Crisis Previews as Ryan and I discuss our pull lists for the coming week.  We've got Lex Luthor's greed boiling over, Lobo vs Atrocitus, Atomic Robo and more in this week's previews.  Hit the jump to see what we're buying, why we're buying it and what we expect from each!

Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Pete Woods

Look out, Metropolis — Lex Luthor is back! The dynamic new creative team of Paul Cornell and Pete Woods (SUPERMAN: LAST STAND OF NEW KRYPTON) hits the scene with an oversized issue packed with non-stop action!

Ryan: I really did not expect myself to be picking up as many Superman Family titles as I have been lately, but how can I say no when Lex Luthor is involved? I like the concept of a Luthor-centered series for a while, but I have to admit that I am cautious about seeing him heading to outer space and teaming with Lois Lane as his “number two.” Luthor has long been one of my favorite characters, but these don’t exactly sound like the types of stories that would cater to the character.

Kirk: Despite Paul Cornell being involved, I wasn't sure if I'd be giving this run a shot or not until I read the preview for it, which showed a lot of promise.  A focus on Luthor should be entertaining as well.  I'm actually more interested in this title than JMS's Grounded at this point.

Written by Brian Clevinger
Art by Scott Wegener

It's been a long week for Atomic Robo. The Vampire Dimension invaded his home. A giant mutant sea-beast chased him through Tokyo. An insane and probably not super genius velociraptor shot him out of the skies over the South Pacific and held him hostage in a cave. Now he's being haunted by a scientifically impossible entity from his past. Meet Atomic Robo's newest nemesis: his oldest nemesis!

Kirk: Any week with a new issue of Atomic Robo is destined to be a good week.  However, there's one problem I can see with this issue - it's going to be nigh impossible to top last issue's Dr Dinosaur.  Almost anything after that will be a let down of some kind.  I just can't see any comic being better than it. 

Written by Adam Beechen
Art by Ryan Benjamin

Terry McGinnis – the Batman of the future – and an elderly Bruce Wayne – the original Batman – are the sworn protectors of Neo-Gotham. But when someone targets The Dark Knight's old foes, the new Batman must begin a case that reaches back into Bruce Wayne's past and puts Terry's future directly in danger!

Don't miss the long-awaited return of the popular Batman Beyond franchise in this 6-issue adventure from Emmy Award-nominated animation writer Adam Beechen (Batman: The Brave and the Bold) and artist Ryan Benjamin (BATMAN & THE OUTSIDERS). And be sure to check out the SUPERMAN/BATMAN ANNUAL #4 from writer Paul Levitz and artist Renato Guedes starring the Batman Beyond characters!

Kirk: I was very tentative in my assessment of this book the last time I had it listed in the previews (it was originally solicited for earlier this month) due to Adam Beechen's involvement.  After reading the preview over on CBR, I'm actually looking forward to picking this up now.  It was only a few pages, but seemed to hit all the right notes for a Batman Beyond story. 

Written by Ed Brubaker
Art by Butch Guice

THE HEROIC AGE IS HERE! Zemo and Bucky -- two characters linked through history whether they like it or not. And now Zemo has set his sights on Bucky and plans to destroy our new Captain America one step at a time. Part 2 of the senses-shattering "No Escape" arc will rock Bucky's world to the core! Brought to you by Ed Brubaker and Butch Guice.

Kirk: Baron Zemo.  Not much else to say, ahaha.  Actually, I'm still interested in seeing what his motivations are for going after Bucky-Cap and if Brubaker will tell us why Zemo has gone back to the Captain America obsessed/daddy issues villain again.  I'd like to know why Fixer is working with him, too, seeing as the Zemo in Thunderbolts turned out to be a fake.

Written by Richard Starkings
Art by Moritat

Blackthorne is assigned to assist Hip and Ebony in tracking down the MAPPO agents loose in Los Angeles. Miki reluctantly agrees to help.

Ryan: The only downside to Elephantmen is that the series struggles to stay on a monthly schedule; otherwise, you can always expect sheer greatness with every single issue. Richard Starkings definitely raised the bar for himself with the utterly awesome issue #25, but if there is anyway he can keep that momentum going, it is definitely by bringing back the always fantastic Moritat. I cannot wait for this issue!

Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Francis Manapul

It may be BRIGHTEST DAY, but when a mysterious group of so-called heroes turns up, another Rogue ends up dead. Plus, the mystery deepens as The Flash witness another murder — his own!

Ryan: The last two issues of this series have been fantastic as Geoff Johns is putting together some great character-focused writing and Francis Manapul is doing the best work of his career. I never thought I’d care much for Barry Allen, but they have made this series a “can’t miss” for me. With a mystery as strong as The Flash witnessing his own murder anchoring this issue, I expect more greatness here. This should definitely be in the running (pun intended) for the top spot this week.

Written by Paul Dini and Tony Bedard
Art by Guillem March and Peter Nguyen

Poison Ivy's new romance hits some turbulence as she discovers something weird going on around the office! She loves her job and doesn't want anything to get in the way — not even her new boyfriend! But when Ivy discovers an old ally is behind everything, will she turn against her employers? And what do the other Sirens think of Ivy's odd romance and even odder choices regarding her job?
In the second and final chapter of ""Sister Zero,"" written by Tony Bedard and illustrated by Peter Nguyen, Catwoman confronts the monster that her sister Maggie has become.

Ryan: Is this issue going to feature two separate stories? That seems to be the implication of the solicitation. I’m definitely interested in seeing where Tony Bedard and Peter Nguyen take the Catwoman/evil nun Maggie story, plus the Poison Ivy story sounds solid, especially if it will be written by Paul Dini. This series has been massively underrated since its debut and it looks like we are in store for another great issue that will be criminally overlooked.

Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Doug Mahnke

BRIGHTEST DAY marches on as the Main Man, Lobo, goes head-to-head with Red Lantern Atrocitus — with Hal Jordan caught in the middle! It doesn't get more brutal than this! Plus, Hector Hammond returns...to join the new Guardians?

Ryan: Lobo + Atrocitus + a violent alteraction + Hal Jordan: Mediator + Doug Mahnke = Total Awesomeness. The only way this issue won’t be amazing is if Hector Hammond play too large a role in the issue. Hammond is perhaps the only character that Johns hasn’t made interesting during his run on this series. I hope he inclusion doesn’t derail this theoretically badass issue. 

Kirk: Ryan pretty much nailed this one.  Not much else to add except I hope Rage Kitty gets some payback on Hal for kicking him last issue.

Written by Ed Brubaker
Art by Mike Deodato Jr.

On a mission no one can know about and already betrayed by one of their own! Our Secret Avengers strike force finds a link between Roxxon's digs on Mars and a mysterious shadow group on Earth. But what evil will they face on the Red Planet itself, and will a hero fall?

Ryan: Last issue ended with Nova getting ready to put on the Serpent Crown, which I hope won’t spell lasting trouble for the character (who is my favorite Marvel hero). I mean, if a hero has to fall, can’t it be War Machine? He is the only character in the Secret Avengers I would gladly go without (plus then we can replace him with Wonder Man). Plus, what the heck was up with Nick Fury at the end of the last issue? 

Kirk: Really can't wait to find out what's up with that Nick Fury at the end of the last issue.  LMD?  Mind control?  Regular Nick just working all the angles?  I hope it isn't an LMD.  Nothing worse than an LMD/Doombot/robot duplicate cop-out.

Written by Alessandro Barbucci and Barbara Canepa
Art by Various

Exceptional beings exist who possess the ability to take on any identity. Among them is Noa, the most famous last generation synthetic doll. Sky Doll Spaceship lifts the veil on some of her often very extravagant past experiences: call girl in the middle of the desert, sexy comic book heroin, limo driver, and finally, the normal (ironic, funny, sometimes melancholic) life of a doll on planet Papathea... Discover through new exciting tales of Sky.Doll by Canepa & Barbucci featuring art by European superstars Riff Rebs and Bengal!

Ryan: The last issue of this supplement series was a fun reminder of how engaging Sky-Doll is. While it lacked the focus, mind-blowing beauty, and thought-provoking story of the main story, it was a lot of fun and a definite must read for fans of the series. I suspect more of the same will be in store here, plus the art is from European artists that I never would have heard of otherwise, which spells a win for me.

Written by John Ostrander
Art by Jan Duursema

The Sith Empire's strike against the Hutt temple on Napdu brings a new ally into the war against the Sith, lending strength to Cade Skywalker's vendetta. On Korriban, Princess Sia Fel, a prisoner of the Sith, learns a shocking secret about the man she loves. And, emboldened by their success against the Mon Calamari and the Hutts, the Sith plan an attack against Admiral Gar Stazi and the Galactic Alliance. There's no stopping the galaxy's descent into all-out war. The end is near!

Ryan: While I’m very upset that this awesome series will be coming to an end in just two issues (this and #50 next month), I’m pleased that Ostrander and Duursema have been going out with style. The last few issues have been amongst the absolute best for this series, with story packed incredibly densely and told efficiently from both main members of the creative team. As Cade’s war with the Sith heads towards its conclusion, the only thing you can be certain of is that its going to be a great read!

THOR #611
Written by Kieron Gillen
Art by Richard Elson

Just days after the SIEGE, the best-selling, fan-favorite THOR written by Kieron Gillen continues...and the God of Thunder goes to Hell! The war dead of Asgard are not resting easily. How did Loki contrive to rob these departed heroes, even in death? What do the wandering spirits want now...and what will they do to get it? The events of SIEGE, THOR and SIEGE: LOKI have profound repercussions!

Kirk: Looks like we'll be seeing the follow-up to Siege and that Loki one-shot before Matt Fraction takes over the title.  Would have liked to see this have some impact on Siege, but at least we'll get some resolution in the actual Thor title.

Written by Ron Marz
Art by Kenneth Rocafort

The Pilot Season Winner is Back! Carin Taylor is the fastest woman in the world. At least, she'd better be if she wants to save her own life and the lives of her Cyberforce teammates. When a former Cyberdata scientist--and test subject--seeks revenge against the members of Cyberforce, only Velocity can save her friends before the clock literally runs out. Bringing together writer Ron Marz (Witchblade, Angelus) and artist Kenneth Rocafort (Cyberforce/Hunter-Killer) for the first time.

Ryan: The great folks at Top Cow were kind enough to pass on a review copy of this comic and I decided to check it out. I really dig Kenneth Rocafort’s work and Ron Marz has been killing with the Magdalena series lately, so in terms of the creative team, this could be great. I don’t have much experience with Cyberforce, so hopefully this will be accessible to new readers.

Written by Francesco Artibani
Art by Denis Medri and Roberto Di Salvo

It's an all-new, all-different version of the X-Men as told by some of Europe's greatest comics storytellers! In this vivid re-imagining of the X-Men mythos, everything is not as it seems and teenaged versions of Cyclops, Beast, Wolverine, Iceman, Storm and Rogue face a threat worse even than super villains or race-destroying viruses...HIGH SCHOOL! When the troubled Anna Raven is recruited to join the Worthington Foundation, a school for the gifted, she jumps at the chance to escape her broken life. But one student who can't control his unusual powers could bring everything crashing down, literally, as he threatens to destroy the entire school!

Ryan: I will openly admit that I have an unfair bias towards American comics and American comic creators. I don’t read much manga and I’ve never made a concentrated effort to check out any European comics. That being said, I do love the X-Men and I am feeling a little adventurous, which has me strongly considering this little miniseries. Of course, at $4.99 an issue, it’ll take a strong flip through to sway me into picking up the floppies instead of just waiting for the trade.

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nikbackm said...

No need to wait for the X-Campus trade. Or even the single issues for that matter.

It's been available on Amazon.co.uk since 2008.


twobitspecialist said...

X-Men as teenagers has been done to death, but I can see the appeal into starting over with them. The main 616 version can be VERY confusing for anyone who hasn't been following for a while.

I greatly enjoyed Secret Avengers #1, so I hope #2 delivers, but it'll be a shame if they go through with it and kill off a character after only one issue.

Matt Duarte said...

@nickbackm: Holy crap, you are right!

And if you don't want to pay shipping, you can just go here


Kelson said...

I'm going for the speedsters this week, Flash and Velocity. I didn't care much for Flash: Rebirth, but the first two issues of the actual ongoing book have been fantastic.

As for Velocity, I've been looking forward to the book since it won Pilot Season. I was a bit apprehensive when they finally announced it with a completely new creative team, but I had a chance to read a review copy over the weekend, and it's definitely worth checking out! Here's my review of Velocity #1 in case anyone's interested.

Ryan K Lindsay said...

I think Action Comics looks like the most interesting DC comic on the shelf right now, especially seeing as Nick Spencer will be starting a Jimmy Olsen back up in it come September.

nf said...

Action Comics and the Flash take the top for my excitement this week.

brandon said...

Busy week headlined by Atomic Robo, but Kirk is correct - how can anything come close to last issue?

Also looking forward to the Abe mini series, Green Lantern and three Star Wars titles. Elephantmen WILL kick ass though as the war is a brewing.

Might be picking up Muppets, Secret Avengers, Velocity, Captain Swing or some combination of them.

Nick Spencer is a huge draw to Action but I'm not feeling the direction....I'll wait for the reviews to come in.

Ethereal said...

Only book that I'm definitely getting from DC is GL. Wonder Woman could be good, but I'm going to wait for the first arc or so to see where JMS goes. Same goes with the Flash, waiting for the first couple arcs. Not sure what to make of Batman Beyond still. No real interest in Lex Luthor Comics either.

From Marvel I'm picking up Captain America, the Invincible Iron Man Annual, Secret Avengers. I'm waiting for Fraction on Thor to start picking it up.

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