Friday, April 6, 2012

The Weekly Crisis vs. Solicits For June 2012

A month into the summer comic wave leads us to check out the Weekly Crisis solicitation picks for June. Before Watchmen gets started, AvX moves into its second act, and Image continues the creator owned push. Hit the jump to find out what else the group has to say for this month's solicits.

Ryan L's Thoughts

The Best Things in June

Before Watchmen: Minutemen

Out of all the Before Watchmen minis to ship in this onslaught of the pillaging of Alan Moore's mind, the Minutemen one has me the most intrigued because it feels like this is the one that could have the most scope. These guys weren't exactly the focus of the Watchmen book and so I feel Cooke has the most room to move here and be creative without trashing a unanimous classic. Oh, and it's Darwyn Cooke writing and drawing the book - I'm down for that.

American Vampire Takes Over

I still don't agree with Scott Snyder splitting his saga over multiple titles, I always prefer when the scope of a massive tale is kept within the one title, but that doesn't mean I won't be buying copies of American Vampire #28 and American Vampire: Lord of Nightmares #1 in the one month. I love American Vampire and having two new storylines start in the one month is pretty damn cool. I'm in.

The Massive Starts
Brian Wood kicks off a new mammoth ongoing, this time through Dark Horse. You’d have to be nuts to miss out on the ground floor with this one. Wood has proven, time and again, that he knows what he’s doing in this medium. I urge everyone to check this out. It might not be your type of genre but you can surely dip a toe to find out.

Michael Lark on Winter Soldier
‘Nuff said.
Infernal Man-Thing
WITH SCRIPTS FROM STEVE GERBER! Oh, yeah, this could be one hell of a lot of fun. I love a good Vault story and this one isn’t just a one-shot, it’s a three issue mini. This is kick ass and I thank whoever found the scripts.
The Worst Things in June
Scalped #60

Yeah, I'm annoyed this series is ending. It's not that I want it to go forever, I LOVE a finite title, but that doesn't mean this won't be a sad moment. If there was ever a crime comic that had good odds to make me cry, this one might be it. Hell, look at that cover. Things are coming full circle and it is here we'll find out if this tale is crime or straight up noir - I've loved this book as a noir classic but I'm kind of hoping for a happy ending - at least for someone, right?

Before Watchmen: Silk Spectre and Nite Owl - plus the Back Ups

I have no interest in reading this Silk Spectre book. None at all. I might have come along for the Nite Owl book were it not for Straczynski being the man writing it. The guy does nothing for me with his work. Then there are the back sup - I'm assuming they will link between all the titles and as such will lack meaning for me without picking up all the titles and I will not be picking up all the titles. An you might notice I haven't mentioned The Comedian. Man, that title might be good but my gut tells me otherwise.

Brian Wood on X-Titles
I love Brian Wood but I just find the X-titles impenetrable. I don’t know if I can follow him onto an X-Men book. Certainly not the one in the Ultimate U.
Ant-Man: Season One
Y’know, I could really dig on this title, were it not for the fact it was written by Tom De Falco. No offense to the man but in my head he’s just this left over 80’s icon that doesn’t do anything for me. Hopefully this book is good and I’ll pick it up on the buzz…but somehow I doubt it.
Star Wars Titles
Man, I love me some Star Wars but the titles on their books are nigh incomprehensible. Colons beget m-dashes which beget more colons. It’s ridiculous. Try these on for size:
There is something to be said for branding, but there’s also just as much wisdom in a clear and snappy title.
The Coolest Things in June

Matt Kindt on Frankenstein

Yeah, I'm as bummed as anyone about Jeff Lemire leaving our Agent of S.H.A.D.E. but you have to be kind of happy with his replacement. Matt Kindt is pretty damn good and should fit this title well. At least Alberto Ponticelli is still with him, that's always going to be awesome.

DC Comics Presents: Superman Adventures #1 - Mark Millar's Issues

One thing I nearly always hear about Mark Millar's work is that it was awesome when he was on this title. We all know he's a big Superman fan and this was back before he wrote his current crop of titles I don't like so I think I might just check this one out. 4 issues worth for $7.99 certainly can't be sneered at. I love DC putting these things together.

The Invisibles Omnibus HC

Man, this thing has it all. I haven't read the Invisibles and the opportunity to read all three volumes and various one-shots in the one book is an amazing premise. Now, if only I had a spare $150 to afford the pleasure.

Amazing Fantasy #15
Yeah, if this one is digital it’ll be worth a pick up. I can dig that.
I cannot wait to fill my wooden library with leather bound versions of these tomes. The art across all the arcs with people like Sean Phillips and Michael Lark dropping knowledge has been awesome and now Alex Maleev joins the crew. A pity this just couldn’t hold its Top 10 sales status because they are good books and deserve to have everything of the highest quality including art, sales, and praise.
Defenders #7
This gets a mention purely for the inclusions of the Black Panther, the Black Cat, and the Prince of Orphans.

Ken's Thoughts

The Best Things in June

Rockin' Robins
Batman & Robin #10 is a meeting of the Batman sidekicks, something I hope carries that relationship banter the way Chuck Dixon and even Tomasi used to write Dick and Tim's interactions. It's a great family dynamic, and if this can lead into the rumored Robins book that Jeff Lemire might be writing, the more the merrier, like Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain *cough* hint hint DC *cough*

The Worst Things in June

Dark Avengers
This is probably one of the lightest worst things I'll write about, because I can understand the rebranding in terms of a sales perspective, and wanting to keep Parker's general story going. The creative team is even staying the same, although that changes with the drop of a hat in comics these days. But in doing the name change it seems a few of Osborn's recent Avengers crew are showing up, ballooning an already big cast, when the book really needs a good refresh in trying to work with the existing characters after this ho-hum time travel story.

Earth Two
I'm just not seeing what the point is, less than a year after the DC Universe was rebooted, to now show the older JSA heroes in their younger form on another earth that seems to be just as dark as the new DC earth. On top of that, the costumes just look silly, like this revised Jay Garrick Flash costume. Ant-Man or Flash, you decide!

The Coolest Things in June

Walking Dead and Three Digits
This is a book that has had its fair share of peaks and valleys throughout the run, which the TV shows seemed to mimic in greater degree. Yet over the last 10 or so issues, I've really enjoyed the idea of the survivors learning to just live in the world, and not survive. It's a subtle change, yet it also allows for so much more character growth. So as we come to the big #100, I'm interested in seeing what will happen in this "Something to Fear" arc, and if the unthinkable really does happen.

Grant's Thoughts

The Best Things in June

Winter Soldier's Winter Lark

I didn't realize how much I loved Michael Lark's art until he filled in on issue #7 of Greg Rucka's amazing Punisher run.  After having seen that and being reminded of how great Lark can be, I must admit that I'm head over heels.  I was just wondering when I might see him next when I discovered, to my joy, that he'll be coming onto Winter Soldier for at least a couple of issues.  What could be better than a reunion with the other half of Gotham Central's writing alumni?  I can't think of anything.  (I am also aware that Brubaker and Lark collaborated on Daredevil, but I know them better from Gotham Central, so there.)

More Baltimore!

Lord Baltimore is easily among my favourite Mike Mignola creations, and the recent miniseries Mignola has done with Christopher Golden and Ben Stenbeck have been absolutely amazing.  It looks like this go around will be but a two-issue tale, but getting more Baltimore stories so soon after the most recent mini's end is definitely a good thing.  Bring it on!

Brian Wood is Massive

I've read a lot of Brian Wood's past work, and it's pretty much all top notch stuff.  I really enjoyed the preview for The Massive that was in Dark Horse Presents, and I can't wait to see how the ongoing proper plays out.  Like most of what Wood does, The Massive feels like it's both a radical departure from what he's done before and the next logical step in his writing career.  That doesn't make all that much intuitive sense, but just go with it, okay?

The Worst Things in June

The (Still) Dubious Double Ship

I know I mentioned this last time, but if Marvel can continue to ship the majority of their books twice a month, I can complain about it in two different columns.  This still strikes me as a sucky business plan and makes me less inclined to pick up new Marvel books.  Buying a year's worth of double shipped Amazing Spider-Mans made me grow tired of a title that I used to love.  How will double shipping virtually their entire catalogue impact sales in the long term?

Too Much Batman in My Batwing

I've been a big proponent of Judd Winick's Batwing since Day 1, and I'm not about to change my tune at this point, but I would ask if we could have slightly less Batman in the title.  This month's issue guest starts Batman yet again, and it's starting to feel more like a teamup book than a title starring a single protagonist.  As great as Bruce is (and he's pretty great), he has more than enough books to appear in every month.  Does he really need to horn in on Batwing's activities as well?  I certainly wouldn't complain if David Zavimbe got a little more time on his own.

The Coolest Things in June

Dustin Nguyen's Back in Business!

I would echo virtually everything that Ryan says above, but the thing I'm most excited for - so much so that I'll happily repost it down here - is having Dustin Nguyen back to drawing regular comics.  Granted, I know that he's currently doing Batman Beyond Unlimited, but I've never been a big fan of the series' writers, Adam Beechan or J.T. Krul.  Therefore, I'm absolutely thrilled to have my favourite comic book artist teaming up with one of the best comic book writers going right now.  Believe you me when I say that Scott Snyder and Dustin Nguyen will be making some amazing things together.

A New Creative Team for X-Men

Picking up the final five issues of X-23 is the closest I've ever come to following an X-Men ongoing, but seeing that a new creative team is coming on to the self-titled X-Men book might be enough to change that.  More specifically, it's who the new creative team is.  We have Brian Wood writing the thing, which as I already established above is a good thing, but more importantly, we have David Lopez on art.  As I hope you remember, considering all the fuss I made about it, David Lopez was the artist on last year's Mystic miniseries, which was one of my favourite comic book things to happen all last year.  I don't even care what's happening in this book, I might give it a shot just to see some more of Lopez's art.

Creator Owned Heroes (One Creator in Particular)

Speaking of artists (which is mostly what I've been doing here), I'm also rather pumped for Image Comics' Creator Owned Heroes.  Of course, I think it's neat that they're trying to get more creator owned properties made by well-established creators, but my real interest in this opening issue is that Kevin Mellon (of Heart fame, one of my other favourite comic book things to happen all end of last year / beginning of this year) is doing the art for one of the stories.  It's great that Steve Niles, Jimmy Palmiotti, Justin Gray, and Phil Noto will also be working on this title, but Kevin Mellon is what's going to get me to pick it up.

Taylor’s Thoughts

The Best Things in June

Fantagraphics continue pushing the envelope

When it comes to eclectic, forward thinking publishing not many companies can come close to Fantagraphics, and in the month of June their product looks particularly enticing. Kicking off with the new EC reprint line, they are putting out two hard covers collecting some classic stories with each one focussing on a particular creator. First up is ‘Came the Dawn and Other Stories’ by the amazing Wally Wood, followed by Harvey Kurtzman’s ‘Corpse of the Imjin and Other Stories.’ Both of these should be on any self respecting comic fans ‘to buy’ lists. If that wasn’t enough, we also have Tom Kaczynski’s potentially game changing ‘Beta Testing of the Apocalypse’ and are seeing Fantagraphics continuing their relationship with Lorenzo Mattotti with the release of his and Jorge Zentner’s ‘The Crackle of the Frost.’ If you haven’t seen any of Mattotti’s art before, now’s the time to try. His ability to evoke melancholy with his line is unparalleled. And that’s not even mentioning Joe Daly coming out with a third volume of the hilarious Dungeon Quest.

All time greats get another chance to shine

Walt Simonson, supposedly killing it on Avengers, has inked a deal with Titan Publishing to release an ‘Artist’s Edition’ (do IDW own the name?) of he and Archie Goodwin’s fantastic adaptation of ‘Alien.’ As a proud owner of Simonson’s Thor: Artist’s Edition, this one has got me slobbering with anticipation. Also, tucked away towards the back of Previews, Hero Initiative and Marvel have collaborated to put out ‘The Invincible Gene Colan’ hard cover, showcasing ‘The Dean’s’ sublime artwork. Be warned on this one though, there will only be one printing so get them while they’re hot!

The Secret History

For the single issue buyers out there, a new issue of the best book nobody reads, The Secret History comes out in June from Archaia and creators Jean Pierre Pecau and Igor ‘why do those New X-Men issues haunt me so’ Kordey. If you haven’t read this story of four brothers and sisters moulding and shaping the course of history from Ancient Egypt to present, I urge you to do so. The omnibus hard covers are dense, affordable, and quite frankly amazing.

The worst things in June

Marvel, I’m not made of money!

If you, like me, have been waiting on Steven King’s The Stand Omnibus by Roberto Aguirre-Sarcassa and Mike Perkins here’s the good news; a Stand Compendium Slipcase hard cover is being released. The bad news? It’s ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS! Won’t be buying that then.

The coolest thing in June

The Re(a)d Diary/ The Red Diary

Image are reprinting Teddy Kristiansen’s gorgeous looking The Red Diary in June, translated by Man of Action Steven T Seagle, but in a stroke of genius not only has Seagle translated it, he has also written a totally different story using Kristiansen’s art, and Image have made both stories available in a flip book format. It could either be the book of the year or a glorious failure, yet either way it encapsulates what makes comics different from any other medium in entertainment. Plus any time we get to see new Kristiansen art is a good day in my books.

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Klep said...

The DC panel at ECCC confirmed that there are no plans to use Steph anytime in the near future. I'm pretty sure at this point that DC editorial has something personal against her and Cass, and we won't be seeing either of them as long as they can help it.

Anonymous said...

I'm a HUGE fan of American Vampire! The more the merrier as I always put AV down wishing there was more!

Naymlap said...

Funny enough, changing Thunderbolts to Dark Avengers is working on me. I'm a fan of Ai Apaec and I'll give the book a chance based on him being a part of the team. Granted, I'm doing this for a very specific reason that does not apply to anyone else.

Unknown said...

I was going to pick up just a couple of those Watchmen issues, but my sub service offering 75% off if you order all four was an offer I couldn't refuse. Why the misgivings on Comedian? It is Azzarello, and can't go wrong there. The character certainly seems a good fit for his work. But yes, Nite Owl and Silk Spectre have me less enthused than the other two titles. Heck, I'm still feeling a bit dirty ordering any of these given my reverence for the original series.

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