Tuesday, August 2, 2011
I'd like to welcome you to the return of yet another cherished feature from the Weekly Crisis back catalogue, which is of course, the Post-Crisis Previews! We have a healthy assortment of books from a number of different publishers, ranging from brand new numbers 1s to series ending issues, so hit the jump to check out what comics I'll be picking up and my thoughts on each one!
BATMAN GATES OF GOTHAM #4
Written by Scott Snyder & Kyle Higgins
Art by Trevor McCarthy
Batman, Red Robin, Robin and Black Bat are all thrown into a race against time as The Architect’s true plan is revealed! But what does that mean for Oswald Cobblepot and Tommy Elliot? And just how does the first Super Villain of Gotham City factor into The Architect’s plot to destroy the city’s first families? Be here for the exciting penultimate issue! Be here as GATES OF GOTHAM sets the stage for a bold new direction in the Bat books!
Grant: As I mentioned in my review for Gates of Gotham 3, this series has been hit and miss, but on the whole, it's made for some pretty good reading. The character work has been rather strong, especially where Damian is concerned. It's also worth noting that I imagine all the information we're learning about Gotham's formative years will play into Scott Snyder's run on Batman come September, which should be interesting to see. Additionally, Trevor McCarthy's drawings have thus far made up for any shortcomings when it comes to the writing, so there is that.
FLASH FACT: The war between the Amazons and the Atlantians has arrived. The battle between Diana of Themyscira and Emperor Aquaman will tear this world apart – unless The Flash can fix it!
Grant: DC's summer event has been... uneven at best. The first three issues have done a lot of hinting at the potential hidden within the world of Flashpoint, but they haven't done much more else. The plot is moving at a near glacial pace, with the audience still completely in the dark as to what's going on. Looks like Johns and Kubert will have their work cut out for them to fit a coherent story into the two issues left. And yet, I've already picked up three of the five issues, so what's the harm in buying two more?
FLASH FACT: The Joker is revealed, and Thomas Wayne will have to figure out whether he can pull the trigger on his lifelong nemesis.
Grant: Unlike the main series, Knights of Vengeance has been great. Azzarello and Risso are one of the few creative teams taking advantage of the liberties provided by the Flashpoint conceit. They're telling a Batman story that is both similar and completely different from the Caped Crusader that readers know and love. It also doesn't hurt that the story they're telling is a damn fine one.
Written by Kurtis J. Wiebe
Art by Riley Rossmo
The deadly finale brings all the exposed threads together and Green Wake's secrets are revealed. Morley must face his own demons to find Babylon, and vile monsters stalk his every step to keep him from his final destination: Home.
Grant: Kurtis J. Wiebe's Green Wake has been an interesting read since the first issue. Initially presented as a five issue limited-series, it's my understanding that this book, featuring the strange town of Green Wake - a mysterious place that seems to be some type of purgatory for its unfortunate residents - has been expanded into an ongoing, so I believe this will simply complete the first story-arc. Either way, it's a very different book with some exceptional art on the part of Riley Rossmo that I'm always happy to read. I imagine this issue will continue that trend.
Written by G. Willow Wilson
Art by David López
A Crossgen title reimagined as only Marvel could! Eisner Award-nominated G. Willow Wilson (Air, Superman, Cairo) and superstar David López (Hawkeye/Mockingbird, Catwoman) join forces to bring you the story of two seemingly ordinary orphan girls who find their lives turned upside down by magic...one of them will find herself responsible for saving the world and the other as her mortal enemy!
Grant: This purchase is all about the previews that Marvel has been littering throughout the back of their books for the last few weeks. I feel like this title is giving off some major Hayao Miyazaki vibes (I'm thinking particularly of Howl's Moving Castle), which is a good thing in my books. It looks like it will be an excellent all-ages book - something that comics can always use more of, in my humble opinion.
Art by Marco Checchetto
For Frank Castle death comes easy...life is where things gets complicated. Fully loaded with the Eisner winning writer Greg Rucka (Batwoman, Queen and Country, WOLVERINE) and neo-superstar artist Marco Checchetto (Amazing Spider-Man, Daredevil), the BIGGEST GUN of all returns with blood on his hands and vengeance in his eyes. As New York City's body counts continue to rise, the city's streets are teeming with more methodical criminals than ever and a police force doing it's best to keep its head above water. The Punisher has returned to serve his own brand of justice with everything's he's got... but can he survive the darkness stored in his own arsenal? Plus bonus pages exploring some of the new personalities in Frank's life...and how closely intertwined living is with dying.
Grant: The Punisher is certainly an interesting character, but never one who's really been my cup of tea. However, when I heard that Greg Rucka was coming back to monthly titles to pen Frank Castle's continued adventures, I knew I had to be there. Rucka is one of the best writers out there in my opinion, and the bits of information I've heard about this run have only served to get me more excited.
ROGER LANGRIDGE’S SNARKED #0
Written by Roger Langridge
Art by Roger Langridge
Presenting a fresh and incredibly modern Langridgean spin on an already-warped classic, the Snarked epic adventure starts here with an all new, all original 8 page story featuring The Walrus and The Carpenter from Through the Looking Glass, the same Walrus that inspired the Beatles song 'I Am the Walrus.' This special includes a full issue's worth of back matter that dives deep into the world of Snarked with an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the new series.
Grant: Not actually a complete comic, this item will serve as a preview for Langridge's monthly series that's being published by Boom! starting this October. After Langridge's great work on Thor: The Mighty Avenger and The Muppets comic book, I'm game for checking out whatever he's up to. And when the whole package costs only a dollar, even if there's just 8 pages of comic preview and some interviews, rough sketches, or what-have-you, that's a pretty good value in my eyes.
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by R. M. Guera
In 'Knuckle Up' part 1 of 5, it's war on the reservation as Red Crow loses his grip on the reins, Agent Nitz gains momentum and Dash Bad Horse faces his toughest foe yet.
Grant: Jason Aaron and R. M. Guera's fantastic series is entering into the final stretch, with it recently being announced that Scalped will be concluding with issue 60. I cannot wait for these final 10 issues, because these two have really hit their stride of late. Things have only been getting more intense with each issue, and I don't imagine it's going to let up one bit.
SECRET SIX #36
Written by Gail Simone
Art by J. Calafiore
Bane’s ambitious plans turn darker and deadlier than anyone imagined, putting The Secret Six in the most perilous position of their nasty little lives! No one escapes unscathed in this one – and the Six won’t ever be the same!
Grant: This is the issue I'm most excited and most saddened for. I'm excited because Secret Six is the best thing DC publishes right now. I'm saddened because this is the last issue they're publishing, with the book being one of the most unfortunate casualties of the September relaunch. On the plus side, I just know Simone and Calafiore are going to give the team a proper send off. This has been a book where anything can, and routinely does, happen, and with the team gunning to break Batman and family once and for all, you're going to want to read this issue to see how it all goes down. Buy it.
Written by Scott Snyder & Scott Tuft
Art by Attila Futaki
1916. A man haunts the roads; a man with sharp teeth and a hunger for flesh. When 12-year-old Jack Garron runs away from home, he’ll see how quickly the American Dream becomes a nightmare. Be there at the beginning of the series that everyone will be talking about! From Eisner-nominated writer SCOTT SNYDER (American Vampire, Detective Comics), SCOTT TUFT and ATTILA FUTAKI (NYT Best-Selling-Artist: Percy Jackson) comes the most terrifying horror series of 2011--SEVERED.
Grant: I don't know much about this series beyond the few press releases and the above solicitation, but I do know Scott Snyder is a writer you can trust. If he's writing it, you want to at least give it a chance. And considering how disturbing Detective Comics already is at times, I can't imagine what he'll get up to with a straight-up horror series. Can't wait to see how this plays out.
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Jeff Lemire
“Endangered Species” concludes! As Gus lies dying, he has a new and terrible vision that will test the group’s faith. Meanwhile, Lucy and Jepperd’s relationship crumbles, and Walter Fish is left to pick up the pieces.
Grant: I really like Sweet Tooth. There is, admittedly, a wealth of post-apocalyptic fiction out there, but this series' take on it won me over from the first issue. Lemire has a great sense of pacing when it comes to his writing, and his art is very different from a lot of what's common in more mainstream comics. I look forward to every issue, but the conclusion to the "Endangered Species" arc should be especially good.
So those are the books that I'll be grabbing from my shop this week, but what about you fine guys and gals? Are you also following Flashpoint? Is Fear Itself more your style? Or are you skipping both of those events for something else? Feel free to share your pull in the comments below!