Tuesday, July 10, 2012
It's time for the latest round of Post-Crisis Comic Book Previews, and it looks like it's coming not a moment too soon! The second week of July seems to be hitting in a big way, with my pull clocking in at "way too many comics". So hit the jump to get a gander at some of the great comics coming to shelves near you, including Adventure Time: Marceline Scream Queens #1, Chew: Secret Agent Poyo #1, Space Punisher #1, and much, much more!
ADVENTURE TIME: MARCELINE SCREAM QUEENS #1
Written by Meredith Gran
Art by Chynna Clugston
JOIN FAN-FAVORITE CHARACTERS MARCELINE AND PRINCESS BUBBLEGUM FOR RIOT GRRL ROCK-FUELED EXCITEMENT IN THIS BRAND-NEW ADVENTURE TIME MINI-SERIES!
Thanks to a newfound interest in music, Princess Bubblegum joins Marceline's paranormal rock band for a tour across the land of Ooo! But when they're threatened by everything from scenesters to beasts born of self-doubt, can they make it to the RADDEST GIG EVER in time?! Written and drawn by acclaimed cartoonist Meredith Gran (OCTOPUS PIE) and featuring a back-up story from Jen Wang (KOKO BE GOOD), with variant covers by rockstar lady cartoonists Chynna Clugston (BLUE MONDAY), Ming Doyle (POPGUN), and Colleen Coover (X-MEN: FIRST CLASS)! ADVENTURE TIME #1 and #2 were INSTANT SELL OUTS! DON'T MISS OUT ON THE NEXT INSTALLMENT OF THIS ALL-AGES PHENOMENON!
Grant: Okay, that solicitation has way too many caps in it. I mean, I'd consider myself as excited for this series as the next guy, but I can't muster that much internet yelling to the cause of praising this book. Regardless, considering how good the Ryan North-helmed Adventure Time book has been, I'm really intrigued to see how Octopus Pie's Meredith Gran does with a book focusing on Marceline and Princess Bubblegum forming a band. Capslock aside, that sounds awesome.
AMERICAN VAMPIRE: LORD OF NIGHTMARES #2
Written by Scott Snyder
Art by Dustin Nguyen
Felicia Book reluctantly rejoins the vampire hunting agency known as the Vassals of the Morning Star. They have to track down the deadliest vampire of all time – but it’s not an easy task, because Felicia is plagued by her own past, Agent Hobbes is haunted by an old enemy, and young Gus is beginning to have horrible nightmares!
Grant: The first issue of this series was excessively good, managing to tie this miniseries in with the last miniseries, the wider American Vampire world, and the wider vampire mythos. American Vampire is where Scott Snyder often seems to be at his best, and bringing on Dustin Nguyen is looking like quite the smart move on his part. I'm awful excited to see more of this story and more of its beautiful art.
ATOMIC ROBO REAL SCIENCE ADVENTURES #4
Written by Brian Clevinger
Art by John Broglia
The untold tales of Atomic Robo are un-untold at last! Thrills, spills, chills, and no dill (pickles), this series has it all. Except pickles. The Sparrow thwarts Nazis; Bruce Lee gets philosophical; Robo goes for a swim; and more!
Grant: The last issue of this Brian Clevinger-penned anthology book was perhaps the best yet. While I'm still not 100% on board with the Sparrow story, Bruce Lee continues to surprise, and the one-shots that he puts together to fill in the rest of the comic have been rock solid. I'm kind of hoping that swim the solicitation is referring to is related to that gorgeous cover image, because that looks like a story that needs to be un-untold!
Written by Scott Snyder
Art by Greg Capullo & Jonathan Glapion
Backup written by Scott Snyder & James Tynion IV
Backup art by Rafael Albuquerque
• The stunning conclusion to “THE COURT OF OWLS” epic!
• All is revealed in “THE FALL OF THE HOUSE OF WAYNE.”
Grant: Like some of you, while I've really appreciated the amazing writing and art that Scott Snyder and company have been giving us, I've remained somewhat leery of the actual story that the creative team has been telling. The changes to Batman and his world aren't quite doing it for me, but the craft behind this whole thing is too good to refuse. It's a strange combination, but it leaves me willing to give the title the benefit of the doubt and see how everything finally plays out.
Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Diogenes Neves & Oclair Albert
• The dark magic of CAMELOT’S ruins has brought out the team’s essential natures – and essentially, they’re monsters!
• The road to Avalon is blocked by a most unexpected threat!
• What horrific betrayal does ETRIGAN have in store?
Grant: I've been singing this book's praises from every rooftop I can find, and I would argue it's been with good reason. Paul Cornell, Diogenes Neves, and Oclair Albert have been making one of the best books of the New 52, providing us with hilarious and deadly medieval superhero action, something I never knew had been missing from my life. The team's trip to Camelot has only seem to throw more wrenches in their gears, which isn't great for our heroes, but makes for one hell of a read. As long as they keep bickering and fighting whatever comes their way, I'll keep picking up this book.
CHEW: SECRET AGENT POYO #1
Written by John Layman
Art by Rob Guillory
Hey retailers/readers/speculators! Still kicking yourself for not ordering and/or passing by CHEW #1, now that you see what it’s going for on eBay? Here’s your chance to get sweet, sweet, revenge, with an all-new CHEW #1, a one-shot spinning off CHEW’s most popular supporting character, and comics’ most beloved homicidal cybernetic kung-fu rooster. Concentrated mayhem. Feathers, rage and hate! Plus: an all-star pin-up gallery from some of the most staggeringly talented artists in the industry!
Grant: Chew is already a pretty zany book when it's just focused on its cibopathic lead and his cybernetic human partner, but the inclusion of Poyo has always put things into what I like to call "the ultra-zany zone". Seeing that the threats of giving him a one-shot have finally come true, I can only imagine the ridiculous, depraved things that our feathered hero will get up to. This one should be good.
CONAN THE BARBARIAN #6
Written by Brian Wood
Art by James Harren
Brian Wood and James Harren pull out all the stops in the blowout conclusion to “The Argos Deception”!
With Conan loose in Messantia, pirate queen Bêlit and her crew hit the city hard. Messantia’s soldiers think they’re dealing with a simple barbarian, but they’ve just stepped into Bêlit’s trap!
Grant: Conan the Barbarian has been an incredibly pleasant surprise. Brian Wood has made me care about the character in ways that I didn't know were possible, all the while telling one heck of a swashbuckling adventure story in true pulpy style. And while I bellyached about Becky Cloonan's absence, James Harren has been a terrific replacement, laying out some lovely looking scenes of violence and lust over the course of the sacking of Messantia.
Written by Brian Wood
Art by Kristian Donaldson
Hidden from pirates in the ice and fog of the Bering Sea, the crew of the Kapital weigh the risk of detection against the need to rescue their missing crewmates. Revealed are details about the events of the crash, including the Kapital’s resupply visit to an underwater Hong Kong and the new city that has, literally, grown out of the debris.
Hyperdetailed world building meshed with forward-thinking social sci-fi.
Grant: The opening issue of Brian Wood's new series was quite intriguing. It had so many different elements coming together that it was sometimes difficult to grasp the sheer scope of what he's doing here. We're really focused in on the Kapital's search for its sister ship, the Massive, but there's the end of the world going on at the same time. It's an interesting juxtaposition, and I can't wait to see how the whole thing develops as we move forward.
Written by Ken Garing
Art by Ken Garing
After crash-landing in a vast heap of space junk, wayward space-pirate Silas now journeys on to an area of the planetoid, known as "The Slab". It's rumored that human tribes eke out a living on this endless surface of fabricated metal... BUT, so do gangs of sadistic robots! Silas will have to gather information and find allies in order to make a stand against the larger tyrannical forces that control the planetoid.
Grant: I absolutely loved the first issue of this new series from Image. Just loved it. Ken Garing is doing some really exciting stuff here, and his imagination oozes off the page. He really seems to know his way around a comic book page, showing a strong understanding of layouts and story pacing in that first issue. And I'm pretty confident that the second issue, while different, will continue to impress.
PUNK ROCK JESUS #1
Written by Sean Murphy
Art by Sean Murphy
The newest reality show hit has the unlikeliest celebrity of all in this new black and white miniseries from writer/artist Sean Murphy (JOE THE BARBARIAN, Off Road)!
J2, the TV series starring a clone of Jesus Christ, causes chaos across a near-future United States in PUNK ROCK JESUS, a new miniseries written and drawn by Sean Murphy, the acclaimed illustrator of JOE THE BARBARIAN and AMERICAN VAMPIRE: SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST.
J2 causes outrage and adulation. Religious zealots either love or hate the show, angry politicians worry about its influence on the nation, and members of the scientific community fear the implications of cloning a human being at all – let alone the Son of God. And what effect will this all have on Gwen, the young woman who is selected, through an American Idol-style process, to be the mother of the new Messiah?
All this leads to the hiring of Thomas McKael, the clone’s bodyguard and a former IRA operative with a turbulent past who must protect the new Messiah – a baby who captivates the world, but grows up to become an angry teenager.
Grant: Okay, so I know I usually complain about DC and Marvel's new habit of writing two lines and calling it a solicitation, but this is definitely too far to the other extreme. When I look at solicitations, I want an idea of what's going on in the book and a reason to pick it up. I'm not looking for a novel, like we have here. I was originally going to tell you that I didn't really know what this series was about, but our solicitation has given me a pretty in-depth idea. Either way, I'm picking this up on the strength of Sean Murphy's art alone. He was phenomenal on American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest with Scott Snyder and on Joe the Barbarian with Grant Morrison, so I'm dying to have more. Punk Rock Jesus looks to be that fix.
Written by Frank Tieri
Art by Mark Texeira
• Punishment is a dish best served—in Space!
• Frank Castle shoots his way through the criminal hierarchy of outer space starting with the Sym-Brood-ant Queen!
• From Frank Tieri, writer of Marvel vs. Capcom and Punisher: Noir and gorgeously painted by Mark Texeira (Punisher War Journal, Ghost Rider).
Grant: As I said above, I'd usually be pretty unhappy with this sorry excuse for a solicitation, but I actually love that first line. It pretty much sums up why I want to get my hands on this book. I think I can safely say that Frank Castle is a man who is pretty dedicated to his cause, so I can't wait to see what ridiculous excuse they've provided for him flying around in space and killing people for four issues. I love deep, intelligent comics as much as the next guy, but I'm also a big fan of mindless craziness, which I imagine Space Punisher will have in spades. Sign me up!
That's me for the week. A healthy dose of most everything that's under the sun. What are you most looking forward to this week? Is it Space Punisher? I feel like it might be Space Punisher.