Monday, August 26, 2013
Depending on where you are, November will likely be a very cold time, but all is not lost, for the comic book solicitations for the month have been released and there are plenty of excellent books coming your way. In an effort to save you the trouble of poring through the various solicits from all the different companies to find the cream of the crop, we've gone through on your behalf to locate some of the best, worst, and coolest things that will be landing on comic book stands in a few months time. So hit the jump to check it all out!
Best Things in November
In a world.....with no real superteam, one dude with plans of world domination will unite others to fight another guy who might be able to stand in his way. So we have Harada, Ninjak, the Eternal Warrior, and Livewire teaming up to take down X-O Manowar, all with a top creative team of Matt Kindt and Doug Braithwaite. Valiant's been going slow and steady with the world building, and it looks like they are working the right angles with this new team.
Worst Things in November
Batman and _______
It made sense following Damian's death to have the various members of the bat-family help Batman with his grief, and it should have ended with Nightwing this week. But it seems it's going to continue, now featuring Carrie Kelley this month, who also conveniently has some history with Harvey Dent, the current villain of the series.
This is a series that really has been one of the better books two years since the reboot, but if the core premise is gone, just end the series and move the creative team to another book.
Zero Year Flashback Tie-Ins
I'm.....I'm confused by this. Batman's getting a new origin, and everything's going well so far. Yet DC's solution is to now make other books, completely outside of the bat-family like Green Arrow, Flash, and Action Comics, have tie-in issues that flash back to an event that happened years ago regarding some kind of blackout. You're fine in one title like Batman, you're pushing it by including it in other bat-titles, but do we really need to know what Barry Allen was doing during Bruce's first appearances of Batman? And wasn't this supposed to be what the #0 issues were for?
There are too many X-Books, plain and simple. It's gotten to the point where it's hard to even remember when they come out sometime, and a few of them are shipping twice a month. And when Marvel cancels Astonishing X-Men and X-Factor, I was hoping for it to stay lowered. Too bad.
It's a great creative team to launch the series, on top of Nightcrawler finally coming back to life (which makes all this kerfuffle about Xavier seem rather moot, right?), but why not make this the Wolverine and the X-Men team for an arc? Or cancel a few more books to let this one stand out?
Coolest Things in November
The Ultimate Universe had a pretty good run, but if you're going to pull the trigger and end the line, pull the trigger. Hopefully it's allowed to happen with the universe now that Galactus is hanging around. There's no doubt Miles will magically appear in the regular 616 universe, but it would be something interesting to see from the largest publisher, even having a bit of commentary along the way (the Ultimate Universe, once home to a much more experimental world of storytelling, is eaten up by someone from the regular, cyclical world of publishing).
JMS can be very, very good at writing comics, and very, very bad. Or he'll just up and leave books. That's why I'm putting this in the coolest, not the best section, because I don't know what to expect. The general idea sounds interesting, almost like a world where Heroes for Hire is the norm. And in general JMS' non-big 2 works have always been better stories, so here's to hoping for the best.
Best Things in November
Image Keeping Things Fresh
Once again, I must applaud Image Comics for unleashing an abundance of new #1s on the comic book market this month. They will be dropping seven brand new comic book series and miniseries (as well as an unnumbered one-shot) on the market with creators ranging from Rick Remender to Jonathan Luna to Riley Rossmo to Larime Taylor. And that's obviously only naming but a scant few of the total. There's a lot of cool looking books in that lot, but at this point, I'm most excited for Remender, Matteo Scalera, and Dean White's Black Science. It's a time and dimension spanning science fiction epic from one heck of a creative team, and the lead character just so happens to have a most excellent Christian name (hint: it's mine as well).
Hammering Away With 44
I'm extremely pumped to see that Mike Mignola and John Arcudi are coming back for more Sledgehammer 44 action come November. It's even more exciting to see that Sledgehammer will be tussling with the Black Flame, a character who has also appeared elsewhere in location and time in the Hellboy universe. I can't wait to see how this three-issue miniseries will play out. My only regret is that Mignola and Arcudi aren't bringing Jason Latour back for another tour of duty. Granted, Laurence Campbell, who will be coming in on art duties, does look to be mighty talented, but Latour really had a way with the page that I'm going to miss this time around.
Worst Things in November
Marveling At Poor Comic Book Tie-Ins
As you may or may not have heard, Marvel is doing a SHIELD television series this Fall to bring their movie universe to the small screen (thankfully they've included a helpful circle to remind you of this fact). And, of course, that means that they need to do some kind of comic book tie-in to recognize this fact. But since it would involve work and cost money to create new material for such a venture, Marvel is simply reprinting the most random assortment of issues to fill out The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (which is what they're calling it). Thank goodness they aren't taking the time to commission a comic that television watchers who are completely new to monthly comics could appreciate and enjoy. It's much better that they're collecting Battle Scars #6, the first issue of the most recent Secret Avengers, two issues of Avenging Spider-Man, and Stranger Tales #135 (all the way from 1951). This will clearly entice the new readers Marvel somehow imagines they'll wheel in from the TV show and keep those hypothetical people reading for years to come.
I'm with Ken here. There is absolutely no need for more X-titles at this point, regardless of whether or not Jason Aaron and Ed McGuiness are helming it. There's already a jillion out there, and Brian Wood and Olivier Coipel launched X-Men a scant few months ago. I'm sure that there's a logical reason behind this otherwise bizarre seeming move; unfortunately, I feel like it mostly has to do with dollar signs.
Coolest Things in November
That's Gold, Jerry!
On the other hand, I am kind of excited to see how X-Men: Gold #1 plays out. Apparently Marvel can occasionally get things right, as they are assembling classic X-Men writers and artists (including Stan Lee, Chris Claremont, and Walter Simonson, to name but a few) to create some brand new stories featuring everyone's favourite mutant team. I, for one, think that this sounds like a wonderful proposition, and would happily buy more should they go beyond this single issue.
A Dog, A Detective, and Their Respective Hangers-On
In what is easily one of the best moves in comics all year, DC is starting up a Scooby-Doo team-up book, which is such a brilliant idea that it's hard to believe it hasn't happened sooner. Perhaps to make up for such an oversight, DC is being kind enough to launch the project with quite possibly one of the greatest team-ups in the entire history of the activity. That's right, Scooby-Doo and the gang will be getting together with both Batman and Robin to solve some mysteries. I cannot overstate how excited I am for this whole thing. I am on the edge of my seat in anticipation to see how these meddling kids will stop the bad guys from getting away with it all. November can't come soon enough.