Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Tomorrow brings us the new month and, with it, comic book day, meaning that it's time for our latest edition of Post-Crisis Previews! I'm clearly on a Jeff Lemire kick right now, seeing as I have two more of his titles on my pull, but it's really not my fault that he happens to be writing most of the best books in comics right at the moment. Fortunately for those who might not be quite as fond of the man as I am (although I can't imagine why), there are other comics behind the cut, including the Beasts of Burden: Neighbourhood Watch one-shot and Harvest #1, a new book from Image. Check behind the jump for my thoughts on these books and plenty more!
ANIMAL MAN #12
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Steve Pugh
• Prelude to “ROTWORLD”!
• Continued in this month’s SWAMP THING #12.
• BUDDY and ALEC go into the Rot, and events from the last year of both series are recapped for new readers.
Grant: Jeff Lemire has been doing a brilliant job on Animal Man. I (and pretty much every other comic book site out there) have been telling you this at least once a month for the past year. I hope you've been paying attention, because things are finally coming to a head, with "Rotworld" just around the corner. If, however, you haven't been heeding this good advice, know that it isn't too late! Animal Man has been exceptionally approachable throughout its run, and I imagine that this issue will be no different. Do yourself a favour and take a closer look at one of the brightest parts of the New 52.
Written by Judd Winick
Art by Marcus To & Ryan Winn
• The secrets of mad dictator LORD BATTLE revealed!
• NIGHTWING in action in Africa!
• Plus: JUSTICE LEAGUE INTERNATIONAL vs. BLOODSTORM!
Grant: I'm not entirely certain why they keep calling this book Batwing. I think something along the lines of "A Slew of Guests Appearances - Oh, And That Batwing Guy, Too!" would be more appropriate. I'm hard pressed to think of the last issue that didn't also feature Batman or some other member of the Batfamily. Maybe issue #4? Either way, things are clearly only getting worse, as Nightwing's cameo appearance is apparently being augmented by the entirety of Justice League International. Other characters are great and all, but if I wanted to read them that badly, I'd buy their books. I wish Winick could just tell some stories starring Batwing's corner of the DC Universe and everyone else would mind their own business for a change.
BEASTS OF BURDEN: NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH
Written by Evan Dorkin
Art by Jill Thompson
Adventure, mystery, horror, and humor thrive on every page of the Eisner Award–winning Beasts of Burden. The four-legged occult-investigating team—a heroic gang of dogs and one cat—are doing their best to protect their home, Burden Hill, from a chicken-stealing goblin, a frightful basilisk, and a strange lost herd of sheep!
• This special one-shot reprints three stories from Dark Horse Presents!
• Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson return to the characters that won them the 2005 Eisner Award for Best Short Story!
Grant: If you've never read Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson's Beasts of Burden, then you are in for a treat! Once upon a time, I read someone describe this series as "Scooby-Doo meets Hellboy". While the tone of Beasts of Burden would be a lot closer to the latter than the former, I've always liked the description. The paranormal detective team, made up entirely of cats and dogs, has had some solid adventures in the past - most of which are collected in the hardcover Beasts of Burden book (with the exception of the issue where they met Hellboy). This one-shot is actually a collection of three stories that appeared in previous issues of Dark Horse Presents, but that's no reason to ignore it. Beasts of Burden is a series with a lot of heart, and with Thompson's gorgeous watercolours, it's not one to miss.
DEADPOOL KILLS THE MARVEL UNIVERSE #1
Written by Cullen Bunn
Art by Dalibor Talajic
• What if everthing you thought was funny about Deadpool…was actually just disturbing?
• What if he decided to kill everyone and everything that makes up the Marvel Universe?
• What if he actually pulled it off? Would that be FUN for you?
• The Merc with a Mouth takes a turn for the twisted in a weekly horror comic like no other…
Grant: I usually slam Marvel's point form solicitations pretty hard, but this is one of the best uses of it that I've encountered. While I was already somewhat intrigued by the concept of Deadpool killing the Marvel Universe (ala Marvel Universe vs. the Punisher, but less plaguey one presumes), this concise explanation makes the idea sound even cooler. And with new Marvel wunderkind Cullen Bunn writing the project, I could genuinely be getting excited about this book. We'll see how the first issue goes, and if I can get past the fact that this is being shipped on a weekly basis for the entirety of August.
Written by AJ Lieberman
Art by Colin Lorimer
Human traffickers. Rogue medical teams. Yakuza-run organ mills and a six-year-old drug fiend. Welcome to Dr. Benjamin Dane’s nightmare. His only way out? Bring down the man who set him up by reclaiming organs already placed in some very powerful people. If Dexter, ER and 100 Bullets had a three-way and that mind-blowing tryst somehow resulted in a kid, that kid would read HARVEST. Medical Grade Revenge.
TAG: New from the author of Cowboy Ninja Viking and Term Life!
Grant: I didn't follow the entirety of Cowboy Ninja Viking, but I liked what I read. So I was interested to hear that its writer, AJ Lieberman, is back with a new book - albeit what looks to be a very different book. When I saw this solicitation and that creepy cover image, I figured that giving the first issue a shot would definitely be worth my while. I don't know much about this Colin Lorimer chap, but that cover and a quick Google search gives the impression that he knows his way around a comic book page. Colour me intrigued.
SWAMP THING #12
Written by Scott Snyder
Art by Marco Rudy
• Prelude to “ROTWORLD”!
• Continued from this month’s ANIMAL MAN #12!
• ANIMAL MAN and SWAMP THING – together at last!
Grant: I've explained at multiple reprises how Scott Snyder's Swamp Thing didn't grab me in the same way that Jeff Lemire's Animal Man did. I even tried to give Snyder's Swamp Thing a second shot with issue #10 to no avail. However, the world seems to be conspiring to get me to start reading this book, as the much vaunted crossover between these books is finally beginning in earnest. I'm not sure how I feel about the two books dropping the same week. On the one hand, it makes sense for people who follow comic books closely and read their solicitations (as I do), but if you aren't on the up and up, would you know that you need to buy both books to get the whole story? Are there a significant number of readers who are that casual? Anyways, we'll see how this goes.
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Jeff Lemire
The end begins here! Sweet Tooth and Jepperd finally arrive in Alaska and come face to face with the origins of both Gus and the plague that wiped out humanity. But as the militia bears down on them, their deadliest battle is still ahead. Part 1 of the final storyline, ”The Wild Kingdom,” begins now!
Grant: Oh, man. Last issue of Sweet Tooth was one of the most exciting and innovative monthly books that I've ever had the pleasure of reading, and I can't wait to see what's coming next. Lemire has said that the series is going to be ending with issue #40, which isn't all that far off. I will readily admit that I have no idea how we'll get to anything resembling an ending in the five next issues, but if anyone can do it, Lemire is definitely the guy for the job.
Lots of fun and interesting books to kick off the last month of summer, but I'm definitely the most excited for Sweet Tooth. This series has been an absolute pleasure, and I'll be sad to see it go. What book are you most looking forward to tomorrow?