Best Comic Book Covers for the Week of January 6, 2021

One of my favorite aspects of comic books is the art, especially the cover art. For important issues, there are often numerous variant covers where the publishers commission incredible artists.

Here are my favorite comic book covers this week. If you’d like to see a list of this week’s new releases, click here.


Eternals Vol 5 #1
Marvel Comics
Cover art by Joe Quesada


Future State: Wonder Woman #1
DC Comics
Cover art by Joelle Jones


Future State: Wonder Woman #1
DC Comics
Cover art by Adam Hughes


Eternals Vol 5 #1
Marvel Comics
Cover art by Rian Gonzales


Star Trek: Year Five #18
IDW Publishing
Cover art by JJ Lendl


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Variant Covers of the Week – August 12, 2020

One of my favorite parts of comic book collecting is seeking out the variant covers of my favorite issues. For those of you who are either not familiar with or new to the comic book world, variant covers are essentially special or limited edition covers.

Click here for the list of new releases.


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Excellence #9
Image
Cover art by Taurin Clarke


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Batman’s Grave #9
DC Comics
Cover art by Stephen Platt


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Justice League Odyssey #23
DC Comics
Cover art by Skan


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Green Lantern Vol 6 Season 2 #6
DC Comics
Cover art by Tony S Daniel


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Detective Comics Vol 2 #1025
DC Comics
Cover art by Lee Bermejo


Which one of these covers is your favorite?
Let me know in the comments!




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Variant Covers of the Week – July 29, 2020

One of my favorite parts of comic book collecting is seeking out the variant covers of my favorite issues. For those of you who are either not familiar with or new to the comic book world, variant covers are essentially special or limited edition covers.

Click here for the list of new releases.


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Empyre #3
Marvel
Cover art by Michael Cho


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Mercy #4
Image
Cover art by Giuseppe Camuncoli


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Cable Vol 4 #2
Marvel
Cover art by Ariel Olivetti


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Sleeping Beauties #2
IDW
Cover art by Jenn Woodall


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That Texas Blood #2
Image
Cover art by Duncan Fegredo


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Batman Superman Vol 2 #10
DC
Cover art by Riccardo Federici


Which one of these covers is your favorite?
Let me know in the comments!




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New Comic Book Releases – July 29, 2020

comic-book-1393153_1280

It’s Wednesday, which means it’s comic book release day! Here are some of the most exciting issues coming out. For a complete list, head over to Midtown Comics.

Not sure where to buy your comics? Check out Comic Shop Locator for shops near you. If you don’t live in an area with a local shop, you can purchase from Midtown Comics, directly from the publisher, or through Comixology if you prefer digital copies.

The highlighted issues are the ones that I’d personally recommend.


Marvel

  • Amazing Spider-Man Vol 5 #45 by Nick Spencer & Ryan Ottley
  • Cable Vol 4 #2 by Gerry Duggan & Phil Noto
  • Captain Marvel Vol 9 #18 by Kelly Thompson & Cory Smith
  • Empyre #3 by Al Ewing, Dan Slott, & Valerio Schiti
  • Empyre Captain America #1 by Philip Kennedy Johnson & Ariel Olivetti
  • Empyre Savage Avengers One Shot by Gerry Duggan & Greg Smallwood
  • Iron Man 2020 #5 by Dan Slott, Christos N Gage, & Pete Woods
  • Spider-Man Noir Vol 2 #2 by Margaret Stohl & Juan Ferreyra
  • Star Wars: Darth Vader #3 by Greg Pak & Raffaele Iienco
  • Symbiote Spider-Man: Alien Reality #5 by Peter David & Greg Land
  • X-Factor Vol 4 #1 by Leah Williams & David Baldeon
  • X-Men Vol 5 #10 by Jonathan Hickman & Leinil Francis Yu

DC

  • Batman Superman Vol 2 #10 by Joshua Williamson & Clayton Henry
  • DC Cybernetic Summer One-Shot by various authors & artists
  • Batman Tales: Once Upon a Crime by Shea Fontana, Derek Fridolfs, Marcelo Di Chiara, & Dustin Nguyen
  • John Constantine Hellblazer #8 by Simon Spurrier & Aaron Campbell
  • Legion of Super-Heroes Vol 8 #7 by Brian Michael Bendis & Ryan Sook
  • Plunge #5 by Joe Hill & Stuart Immonen
  • Red Hood Outlaw #47 by Scott Lobdell & Paolo Pantalena
  • Suicide Squad Vol 5 #7 by Tom Taylor & Bruno Redondo
  • Wonder Woman Vol 5 #759 by Mariko Tamaki & Mikel Janin

Image

  • Ascender #11 by Jeff Lemire & Dustin Nguyen
  • Black Magick #12 by Greg Rucka & Nicola Scott
  • Dead Body Road Bad Blood #2 by Justin Jordan, Ben Tiesma, & Mat Lopes
  • Hedra One Shot by Jesse Lonergan
  • Lost Soldiers #1 by Ales Kot, Luca Casalanguida, & Heather Moore
  • Mercy #4 by Mirka Andolfo
  • Nailbiter Returns #3 by Joshua Williamson, Mike Henderson, & Adam Guzowski
  • Spawn #308 by Todd McFarlane & Ken Lashley
  • That Texas Blood #2 by Chris Condon & Jacob Phillips
  • Witchblade 25th Anniversary Edition #1 by David Wohl, Christina Z., & Michael Turner

IDW

  • Kill Lock #6 by Livio Ramondelli
  • Marvel Action: Spider-Man Vol 2 #3 by Brandon Easton & Fico Ossio
  • Pandemica #5 by Jonathan Maberry & Alex Sanchez
  • Sleeping Beauties #2 by Rio Youers & Alison Sampson
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Vol 5 #107 by Sophie Campbell & Nelson Daniel
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Vol 5 2020 Annual by Tom Waltz & Adam Gorham
  • Usagi Yojimbo Color Classics #5 by Stan Sakai



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Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe by Cullen Bunn – A Review

deadpool kills the marvel universe cullen bunn.jpg

Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe by Cullen Bunn
Art by Dalibor Talajic
Superheroes | Comic Book
Published by Marvel
Released November 14th, 2011
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_3_and_a_half_stars

Over the years, Marvel has done a lot of interesting comic book series that take place outside of their normal Earth-616 universe, which is the primary universe for Marvel Comics. Setting their stories outside of the main universe allows them to get away with things that they otherwise wouldn’t, such as killing off big-name characters or destroying the entire world.

Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe is one of those stories. Containing four issues, the series focuses on Deadpool as he tries to wipe out all of the world’s superheroes and villains while breaking the fourth wall. Like many Deadpool comics, this one is fairly meta, and it was an enjoyable story to read.

While many comic books are appropriate for all ages, I would say that this one might not be okay for children or people squeamish about blood and violence – there’s a lot of gore. It’s also rather silly though… so I guess just use your discretion.

deadpool kills marvel universe 1.jpg

Dalibor Talajic did a great job with the art. The style fits well with the story, and it’s the kind of colorful, simple yet detailed art style I prefer in comics.

There are other books in the Deadpool Killogy series, as well as three other Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe volumes. I enjoyed my time with volume one, but I’m not sure if I’m going to read on. The novelty of it was enjoyable, but I have a feeling it’ll get a bit repetitive after a while.

Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe will never be considered one of Marvel’s great series. It’s a fun tale set in the non-dominate Marvel universe that’s enjoyable to read once but probably not over and over again. I definitely recommend it if you like Deadpool, as it’s a decent representation of his character. However, I would not recommend this short series if you’re new to Marvel’s universe or to Deadpool.




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Best Comic Book Covers for the Week of March 18th, 2020

One of my favorite things about comic book release day is seeing all of the wonderful cover art.

Here are the five best covers of the week.


The Low Low Woods Joe Hill 4

The Low Low Woods #4
DC/Black Label
Cover art by Jenny Frison


witchblade

Witchblade Vol 2 #18
Image/Top Cow
Cover art by Roberta Ingranata


xray robot

X-Ray Robot #1
Dark Horse
Cover art by Chris Samnee & Matthew Wilson


batman covre

Batman Vol 3 #91
DC
Cover art by Francesco Mattina


bitter root 7

Bitter Root #7
Image
Cover art by Eliza Ivanova




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New Comic Book Releases – March 18th, 2020

comic-book-1393153_1280

It’s Wednesday, which means it’s comic book release day! Here are some of the most exciting issues coming out. For a complete list, head over to Midtown Comics.

Not sure where to buy your comics? Check out Comic Shop Locator for shops near you. If you don’t live in an area with a local shop, you can purchase from Midtown Comics, directly from the publisher, or through Comixology if you prefer digital copies.

The highlighted issues are the ones that I’d personally recommend.



Marvel

  • 2020 Iron Age #1 by Tom DeFalco and Nick Roche
  • 2020 Machine Man #2 by Christos N. Gage, Tom DeFalco, Andy MacDonald, and Mike Hawthorne
  • Aero #9 by Zhou Liefen, Amy Chu, and Keng
  • Amazing Mary Jane #6 by Leah Williams and Carlos E. Gomez
  • Atlantis Attacks #3 by Greg Pak and Ario Anindito
  • Captain America Vol 9 #20 by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Robert Quinn
  • Captain Marvel Vol 9 #16 by Kelly Thompson and Lee Garbett
  • Conan the Barbarian Vol 4 #14 by Jim Zub and Roge Antonia
  • Deadpool Vol 7 #4 by Kelly Thompson and Chris Bachalo
  • Excalibur Vol 4 #9 by Tini Howard and Marcus To
  • Fantastic Four Vol 6 #20 by Dan Slott and Paco Medina
  • Ghost-Spider #8 by Seanan McGuire and Ig Guara
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 6 #3 by Al Ewing and Juan Cabal
  • Marvels Avengers: Captain America #1 by Paul Allor and Georges Jeanty
  • Marvels X #3 by Alex Ross, Jim Krueger, and Well-Bee 
  • Morbius #5 by Vita Ayala and Marcelo Ferreira
  • Outlawed #1 by Eve Ewing and Kim Jacinto
  • Runaways Vol 5 #31 by Rainbow Rowell and Andres Genolet
  • Spider-Woman Vol 7 #1 by Karla Pacheco and Pere Perez
  • Star Wars Vol 5 #4 by Charles Soule and Jesus Saiz
  • Valkyrie Jane Foster #9 by Jason Aaron, Torunn Grenbekk, and Ramon Rosanas
  • X-Force Vol 6 #9 by Ben Percy and Joshua Cassara

DC

  • Aquaman Vol 6 #58 by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Robson Rocha
  • Batman Vol 3 #91 by James Tynion IV and Jorge Jimenez
  • DCeased Unkillables #2 by Tom Taylor, Karl Mostert, and Trevor Scott
  • He-Man and the Masters of the Multiverse #5 by Tim Seeley, Dan Fraga, and Richard Friend
  • Justice League Vol 4 #43 by Robert Venditti, Doug Mahnke, and Jaime Mendoza
  • The Low Low Woods by Carmen Maria Machado and Dani
  • Lucifer Vol 3 #18 by Dan Watters and Sebastian Fiumara
  • Nightwing Vol 4 #70 by Dan Jurgens and Ronan Cliquet
  • Plunge #2 by Joe Hill and Stuart Immonen
  • Robin 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1 by Marv Wolfman and Tom Grummett
  • Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen Vol 2 #9 by Matt Fraction and Steve Lieber
  • Teen Titans Vol 6 #40 by Adam Glass, Robbie Thompson, and Eduardo Pansica
  • Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen #4 by James Tynion IV and Steve Epting

Image

  • Ascender #10 by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen
  • Bitter Root #7 by David Walker, Chuck Brown, and Sanford Greene
  • Die Die Die #9 by Robert Kirkman, Chris Burnham, and Nathan Fairbairn
  • Family Tree #5 by Jeff Lemire and Phil Hester
  • Hardcore Reloaded #4 by Brandon Thomas, Frances Portela, and Leonardo Paciarotti
  • Middlewest #16 by Skottie Young, Jorge Corona, Jean-Francois Beaulieu
  • Spawn #306 by Todd McFarlane and Philip Tan
  • Tartarus #2 by Johnnie Christmas and Jack Cole
  • Undiscovered Country #5 by Charles Soule, Scott Snyder, Giuseppe Camuncoli, and Daniele Orlandini
  • Witchblade Vol 2 #18 by Caitlin Kittredge and Roberta Ingranata

IDW

  • Marvel Action Spider-Man Vol 2 #2 by Brandon Easton and Fico Ossio
  • Star Wars Adventures #31 by Cavan Scott, Michael Moreci, Arianna Florean, and David M Buisan
  • Transformers Vol 4 #19 by Brian Ruckley, Anna Malkova, and Bethany McGuire-Smith
  • Usagi Yojimbo Vol 4 #9 by Stan Sakai

Dark Horse

  • Bang #2 by Matt Kindt and Wilfredo Torres
  • Dragon Age: Blue Wraith #3 by Christina Weir, Nunzio Deflippis, and Michael Atiyeh
  • Grendel: Devil’s Odyssey #4 by Matt Wagner
  • Predator: Hunters III #2 by Chris Warner and Brian Thies
  • Starship Down #1 by Justin Giampaoli and Andrea Mutti
  • X-Ray Robot #1 by Mike Allred



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Is Wolverine Gay?

wolverine

When I was browsing my newsfeed this morning, I came across an article that I was pretty sure was clickbait: “The Internet’s Freaking Out Over Marvel Making Wolverine Gay.” Another article that came up was from Vice: “Wolverine Might Be a Sexually Fluid Mutant in a Throuple – Deal with It.

I did more research, and yeah, Marvel definitely has made some insinuations that Wolverine is gay or bisexual and is possibly in a relationship with Jean Grey and Scott Summers. Also, apparently in an alternate universe Wolverine and Hercules had a thing? I don’t think I read that one, but that happened.

While some people are welcoming this change, there’s also a large group of people who are very opposed to it. A lot of the articles I’ve found are in favor of making Wolverine gay or are applauding Marvel for being “woke”, and I wanted to share a different opinion to voice some of the problems that die-hard comic book fans experience with Marvel’s changes like this one.

First, and most importantly, it’s incredibly unfair for these news sources (or for anyone, for that matter) to call anyone that is unhappy with this new change “homophobes and bigots” (quoted from the first article I linked to). It’s okay to have discussions about sensitive topics without resorting to calling anyone that disagrees with you a bigot.

A quick note: Both Marvel and DC have focused a lot on diversity over the past several years. This article, however, will focus entirely on Marvel. First, because it was prompted by the Wolverine controversy; and second, because 90% of the comic books I read are published by Marvel.

I love and support diversity. America is full of so many people with different religions, races, and sexuality, and it’s amazing! As a die-hard comic book fan, I want more diversity in comic books. 

Yes, traditionally, a high percentage of comic book characters are white, straight men. However, over time that has changed. In 1966 Marvel created Black Panther; in 1979 Northstar, the first openly gay mutant, made his debut. Marvel is not new to diversity: we have disability rep with Daredevil and Xavier; religious diversity with Kitty Pryde and Magneto; superheroes from all over the world, like Sunfire, Storm (one of my personal favorites), Brother Voodoo, Warpath, Thunderbird, and Nightcrawler. Is there room for more diversity? Absolutely, and I welcome it!

There are a lot of problems that I have with Marvel’s recent decision making, however. I understand that they want to attract more people to their comic books, this just isn’t how to do it. And here are the reasons why not:

It’s lazy.

Instead of retconning existing characters, and making an established heterosexual character (like Wolverine) gay, make awesome new characters! I’ve read Marvel comics that have been published from the 60s to recent times, and 90% of the time, the story is made up of essentially all the same characters. Marvel needs fresh, exciting characters to breathe some new life into their stories, which might help them boost sales.

It alienates existing fans.

As I mentioned in the introduction to this article, I got upset at the articles I was reading that labeled anyone upset at Wolverine’s very sudden change a homophobe or bigot. That’s not what is going on here.

Here’s an example of this kind of controversy that happened a few years ago concerning the MCU. Iron Fist. Iron Fist was created in 1974. His origin story is as follows: Danny Rand, a white, rich kid from NYC, is in a plane crash with his parents over the Himalayas. Both of his parents die, and Danny is raised by a group of monks who rescue him. After becoming the Iron Fist, having completed a series of challenges, he goes back to New York and fights crime and such.

He’s a character completely out of place in the Himalayas, but the monks take him on and train him as one of their own. He’s a great character, with a lot of growth. For people who are life-long Iron Fist fans, it’s difficult when people attack the character for not being Asian and doing martial arts. When the series was released on Netflix, there was a lot of yelling about Danny Rand’s race. Here’s one quote that always sticks out to me, from Keith Chow:

Instead of a white man appropriating the qualities of Asian mysticism, it could have been a story of an Asian-American going back to his parents’ homeland as a way of reconnecting with them — a feeling that many second-generation Asian-Americans can relate to.

It does change the character and the story. I’m not going to broach the topic of cultural appropriation in the article. Comic book fans take canon seriously, just like other fandoms do. These backstories are important to a lot of fans, and they define who the character is and where they come from, why they are the way they are.

One of the reasons that people are upset that Marvel is insinuating that Wolverine is gay or bisexual is that his character, from his first introduction in 1974, has been that he is a heterosexual, cigar-smoking, tough guy with a lot of snark and the hots for Jean Grey. And Mariko Yashida. And Rogue. And Storm. And Domino. And Lady Deathstrike. And Maureen Logan. The list continues on and on.

It’s insulting.

This ties in a bit with my first point that Marvel is just being lazy and not making the effort to create new characters. I can’t speak for everyone, obviously, but do we really want diversity in the form of slapping a new sexuality, religion, or skin color onto an old character? That’s not how diversity works. This is another reason why Marvel and DC should focus on creating new characters instead of just changing existing ones.

The personalities and storylines are taking a back seat to labels.

As I’ve mentioned several times in this article, I love diversity and want more of it in comic books. I’d especially love to see more fat and disabled characters. However, many newer stories and plotlines that Marvel has come out with seem to equate race or sexuality with a personality trait. A personality trait is being short-tempered or giddy. It’s not the same thing, and focusing so much of their storylines on the diversity of their characters makes them feel one dimensional. We are all so much more than a label, and that should apply to well-rounded fictional characters as well.


I’m aware that not everyone is going to agree with me. My goal here is to make people aware that different viewpoints exist, and that jumping to calling people that disagree with you bigots just fuels the anger and divisions that are springing up everywhere. Diversity in literature (including comic books) is important and we need to have these discussions. We just need to look at how we’re getting that diversity and what can be done to best represent the cultures that have been in the background.



What are your opinions on all this? Let me know in the comments.




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Small Spaces, DCeased, & Quiet Girl in a Noisy World – Review Quickies #2

Review Quickies

Between working massive amounts of overtime and dealing with the normal ups and downs of life, I haven’t had a lot of time to write reviews. In order to catch up, here are a few quick reviews of books I’ve read lately.



Small Spaces Katherine Arden

Small Spaces by Katherine Arden
Middle Grade | Horror | Fantasy
Published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Released September 25th, 2018
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_3_and_a_half_stars

I don’t often read middle-grade books, but I wanted an audiobook that would be easy to listen to and found Small Spaces on Scribd.

The story follows eleven-year-old Ollie who joins her class on a trip to a local farm. There’s quite a bit more going on, though, as Ollie discovers a bizarre scene with a crazed woman attempting to dispose of a mysterious book. Ollie starts reading the book and notices strange parallels between the story in the book and what’s happening on the farm. Ollie, along with two of her classmates, has to work together to save the rest of their class as the night takes a supernatural turn.

Small Spaces was super adorable and fun. I know this is the type of book I would have loved had I read it in middle school. The story touches on difficult topics such as grief, yet it is also a rich tale of friendship. It’s a short novel but packs a lot of punch. I’ll definitely be reading the sequel, Dead Voices.


DCeased Tom Taylor.jpg

DCeased by Tom Taylor
Art by Trevor Hairsine & Stefano Gaudiano
Horror | Graphic Novels/Comics | DC Universe
Published by DC Comics
Released November 26th, 2019
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_3_stars

Tom Taylor is my favorite comic book writer. He has a unique ability to combine humor with darkness, and I absolutely love it. Even though I’m not a huge fan of the DC Universe (I much prefer Marvel), I’ll read anything that he writes.

DCeased is an apocalyptic story involving a disease spreading across Earth, turning victims into zombies (essentially), and even superheroes aren’t spared.

What really struck me about DCeased is how dark it is. One of the reasons that I don’t read many DC comics is that the stories and characters often seem a little cartoony for me, but DCeased is dark and serious. I’m not going to spoil the story and say how it ends, but let’s just say that I wasn’t expecting it to end like it did, and I thought that it was great.

The only downside to this collection is that, for many of the characters, I had no real idea of who they were. Obviously, the big names like Batman and Wonder Woman are obvious, but to someone unfamiliar with the DC Universe, there were a lot of less well-known characters who I didn’t care about. If you’re a DC fan though, you won’t have that problem.


Quiet Girl in a Noisy World Debbie Tun.jpg

Quiet Girl in a Noisy World: An Introvert’s Story by Debbie Tung
Graphic Novel | Memoir
Published by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Released November 7th, 2017
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_4_stars

Last year I had the pleasure of reading Debbie Tung’s newer graphic novel release,  Book Love. Quiet Girl in a Noisy World is a collection of black-and-white comics about life as an introvert. I felt as though I was reading about my own life. All of Debbie Tung’s work is adorable and perfectly captures introversion. This would make a perfect gift for your bookworm friends.



Have you read any of these books? What were your thoughts? Let me know in the comments!




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New Comic Book Releases for November 27th, 2019

comic-book-1393153_1280

It’s Wednesday, which means it’s comic book release day! Here are some of the most exciting issues coming out. For a complete list, head over to Midtown Comics.

Not sure where to buy your comics? Check out Comic Shop Locator for shops near you. If you don’t live in an area with a local shop, you can purchase from Midtown Comics, directly from the publisher, or through Comixology if you prefer digital copies.

The highlighted issues are the ones that I’d personally recommend.



Marvel

  • Avengers Vol 7 #27 by Jason Aaron and Ed McGuiness
  • Black Panther Vol 7 #18 by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Chris Sprouse
  • Conan 2099 One-Shot by Gerry Duggan and Roge Antonio
  • Fallen Angels Vol 2 #2 by Bryan Edward Hill and Szymon Kudranski
  • Fantastic Four: Grand Design #2 by Tom Scioli 
  • Fantastic Four: Negative Zone #1 by Mike Carey, Ryan North, Stefano Caselli, and Steve Uy
  • Ghost-Spider #4 by Seanan McGuire and Takeshi Miyazawa
  • Invisible Woman #5 by Mark Waid and Mattia De Iulis
  • Ironheart #12 by Eve Ewing and Luciano Vecchio
  • New Mutants Vol 4 #2 by Jonathan Hickman, Ed Brisson, and Rod Reis
  • Punisher 2099 One-Shot by Lonnie Nadler, Zac Thompson, and Matt Horak
  • Scream: Curse of Carnage #1 by Clay McCleod Chapman and Chris Mooneyham
  • Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #39 by Simon Spurrier and Caspar Wijngaard
  • Valkyrie Jane Foster #5 by Jason Aaron, Al Ewing, and CAFU
  • Venom Vol 4 #20 by Donny Cates, Jose Carlos Silva, and Iban Coello
  • X-Force Vol 6 #2 by Benjamin Percy and Joshua Cassara
  • Yondu #2 by Lonnie Nadler, Zac Thompson, and John McCrea

 


DC

  • Action Comics Vol 2 #1017 by Brian Michael Bendis, John Romita Jr, and Klaus Janson
  • Basketful of Heads #2 by Joe Hill and Leomacs Dan McDaid
  • Batgirl Vol 5 #41 by Cecil Cascellucci and Carmine Di Giandomenico
  • Batman Beyond Vol 6 #38 by Dan Jurgens and Sean Chen
  • Batman: Creature of the Night #4 by Kurt Busiek and John Paul Leon
  • Batman Giant #2
  • Batman vs Ras Al Ghul #3 by Neal Adams
  • Books of Magic Vol 3 #14 by Kat Howard, Simon Spurrier, and Tom Fowler
  • Detective Comics Vol 2 #1016 by Peter J. Tomasi, Doug Mahnke, and Jaime Mendoza
  • Dollar Comics: Infinite Crisis #1 by Geoff Johns, Phil Jiminez, and Andy Lanning
  • The Flash Vol 5 #83 by Joshua Williamson and Scott Kolins
  • Freedom Fighters Vol 3 #11 by Robert Venditti and Eddy Barrows
  • John Constantine: Hellblazer #1 by Simon Spurrier and Aaron Campbell
  • Justice League Dark Vol 2 #17 
  • The Last God by Philip Kennedy Johnson and Ricardo Federici
  • Looney Toons Vol 3 #252 by Scott Gross
  • Martian Manhunter Vol 5 #10 by Steve Orlando and Riley Rossmo
  • Red Hood Outlaw #40 by Scott Lobdell and Kenneth Rocafort
  • Shazam Vol 2 #8 by Geoff Johns and Dale Eaglesham
  • Supergirl Vol 7 Annual #2 by Robert Venditti and Laura Braga
  • Swamp Thing Giant #2
  • Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Infinite Crisis #1 by James Tynion IV, Aaron Lopresti, and Matt Ryan
  • Terrifics #22 by Gene Luen Yang and Stephen Segovia

Image

  • Ascender #7 by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen
  • Criminal Vol 3 #10 by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Jacob Phillips
  • Curse Words #25 by Charles Soule and Ryan Brown
  • East of West #44 by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta
  • Killadelphia #1 by Rodney Barnes and Jason Shawn Alexander
  • Lazarus Risen #3 by Greg Rucka and Michael Lark
  • Postal Deliverance #5 by Bryan Hill, Matt Hawkins, and Raffaele Ienco

IDW

  • Cobra Kai: The Karate Kid Saga Continues #2 by Denton J. Tipton and Kagan McLeod
  • The Crow: Hark the Herald #1 by Tim Seeley and Meredith Laxton
  • From Hell: Master Edition #8 by Alan Moore and Eddie Cambell
  • Marvel Action Classics: Ant-Man by Fred Van Lente, Todd DeZago, Matteo Lolli, and Derec Aucoin
  • My Little Pony: Holiday Special by James Asmus, Trish Forstner, and Andy Price
  • Sonic the Hedgehog Vol 3 #23 by Ian Flynn and Priscilla Tramontano
  • Star Trek: Picard Countdown #1 by Mike Johnson and Kristen Beyer
  • Star Wars Adventures #28 by John Barber, Michael Moreci, Derek Charm, and Tony Fleecs
  • Transformers Galaxies #3 by Tyler Bleszinski and Livio Ramondelli
  • Uncle Scrooge Vol 2 #51 by Fausto Vitaliano, Pietro B Zemelo, Paolo De Lorenzi, and Roberto Vian

Dark Horse

  • Ether: Disappearance of Violet Bell #3 by Matt Kindt and David Rubin
  • Fight Club 3 #11 by Chuck Palahniuk, Cameron Stewart, and Dave McCaig
  • Invisible Kingdom #7 by G. Willow Wilson and Christian Ward
  • Machine Gun Wizards #4 by Christian Ward
  • Witchfinder: The Reign of Darkness #1 by Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson, and Christopher Mitten



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New Comic Book Releases for November 20, 2019

comic-book-1393153_1280

It’s Wednesday, which means it’s comic book release day! Here are some of the most exciting issues coming out. For a complete list, head over to Midtown Comics.

Not sure where to buy your comics? Check out Comic Shop Locator for shops near you. If you don’t live in an area with a local shop, you can purchase from Midtown Comics, directly from the publisher, or through Comixology if you prefer digital copies.

The highlighted issues are the ones that I’d personally recommend.



Marvel

  • 2099 Alpha One Shot by Nick Spencer and Viktor Bogdonovic
  • Absolute Carnage #5 by Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman
  • Absolute Carnage: Captain Marvel #1 by Emily Ryan Lerner and Andrea Broccardo
  • Aero #5 by Zhou Liefen, Greg Pak, Alyssa Wong, and Pop Mhan Keng
  • The Amazing Mary Jane #2 by Leah Williams and Carlos E. Gomez
  • The Amazing Spider-Man Vol 5 #34 by Nick Spencer and Patrick Gleason
  • Annihilation Scourge Alpha #1 by Matthew Rosenberg and Juanan Ramirez
  • Avengers Vol 7 #26 by Jason Aaron and Dale Keown
  • Captain America Vol 9 #16 by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Robert Quinn
  • Captain Marvel Vol 9 #12 by Kelly Thompson and Lee Garbett
  • Conan the Barbarian Vol 4 #11 by Jason Aaron and Mahmud A. Asrar
  • Deadpool Vol 7 #1 by Kelly Thompson and Chris Bachalo
  • Excalibur Vol 4 #2 by Tini Howard and Marcus To
  • Fantastic Four 2099 One-Shot by Karla Pacheco and Steven Cummings
  • Gwenpool Strikes Back #4 by Leah Williams and David Baldeon
  • Immortal Hulk #27 by Al Ewing, Joe Bennett, and German Garcia
  • King Thor #3 by Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic
  • Loki Vol 3 #5 by Daniel Kibblesmith and Andy MacDonald
  • Marauders #2 by Gerry Duggan and Matteo Lolli
  • Punisher: Kill Krew #5 by Gerry Duggan and Juan Ferreyra
  • Spider-Man Velocity #4 by Dennis Hopeless Hallum and Emilio Laiso
  • Spider-Verse Vol 3 #2 by Ryan North and Pere Perez
  • Star Wars Vol 4 #75 by Greg Pak and Phil Noto
  • Strikeforce #3 by Tini Howard and German Peralta
  • Tony Stark: Iron Man #18 by Christos Gage, Dan Slott, and Paco Medina

DC

  • Aquaman Vol 6 #54 by Kelly Sue DeConnick, Robson Rocha, and Daniel Henriques
  • Batman Superman Vol 2 #4 by Joshua Williamson and David Marquez
  • Batman Vol 3 #83 by Tom King and Mikel Janin
  • Batman White Knight Presents: Von Freeze #1 by Sean Murphy and Klaus Janson
  • Dial H for Hero #9 by Sam Humphries and Joe Quinones
  • Dollar Comics: Luthor #1 by Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo
  • Flash Forward #3 by Scott Lobdell, Brett Booth, and Norm Rapmund
  • He-Man and the Masters of the Multiverse #1 by Tim Seeley, Dan Fraga, and Richard Friend
  • Infected Scarab #1 by Dennis Hopeless and Freddie Williams II
  • Justice League Vol 4 #36 by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and Francis Manapul
  • Lucifer Vol 3 #14 by Dan Watters and Fernando Blanco
  • Metal Men Vol 4 #2 by Dan Didio, Shane Davis, and Michelle Delecki
  • Nightwing Vol 4 #66 by Dan Jurgens and Ronan Cliquet
  • Question the Deaths of Vic Sage #1 by Jeff Lemire and Dennis Cowan
  • Supergirl Vol 7 #36 by Marc Andreyko, Eduardo Pansica, and Julio Ferreira
  • Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen Vol 2 #5 by Matt Fraction and Steve Lieber
  • Teen Titans Vol 6 #36 by Adam Glass and Bernard Chang
  • Titans: Burning Rage #4 by Dan Jurgens, Scott Eaton, and Wayne Faucher
  • Wonder Woman: Come Back to Me #5 by Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti, and Tom Derenick

Image

  • Crowded #10 by Christopher Sebela, Ro Stein, and Ted Brandt
  • Farmhand #11 by Rob Guillory and Taylor Wells
  • Heart Attack #1 by Shawn Kittelsen, Eric Zawadzki, and Michael Garland
  • Ice Cream Man #16 by W. Maxwell Prince, Martin Morazzo, and Chris O’Halloran
  • Marked #2 by David Hine, Brian Haberlin, and Geirrod Van Dyke
  • Olympia #1 by Curt Pires, Tony Pires, Alex Diotto, and Dee Cunniffe
  • Outer Darkness #12 by John Layman and Afu Chan
  • Pretty Violent #4 by Derek Hunter and Jason Young
  • SFSX (Safe Sex) #3 by Tina Horn and Alajandra Gutierrez
  • The Weatherman Vol 2 #5 by Jody LeHeup and Nathan Fox

IDW

  • Big Hero 6: The Series #1 by Hannah Blumenreich and Nicoletta Baldari
  • Canto #6 by David M. Booher and Drew Zucker
  • Disney Comics & Stories #8 by Enrico Faccini
  • Eve Stranger #4 by David Barnett and Philip Bond
  • GLOW vs the Babyface #1 by Aimee Garcia, AJ Mendez, and Hannah Templer
  • Marvel Action: Black Panther #6 by Vita Ayala and Arianna Florean
  • My Little Pony: Feats of Friendship #3 by Ian Flynn and Tony Fleecs
  • Star Trek: Discovery: Aftermath #3 by Kirsten Beyer, Mike Johnson, and Tony Shasteen
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Urban Legends #19 by Gary Carlson and Frank Fosco

Dark Horse

  • American Gods: Moment of the Storm #7 by Neil Gaiman and P. Craig Russell
  • Count Crowley: Reluctant Midnight Monster Hunter #2 by David Dastmalchain and Lukas Ketner
  • Disney Frozen True Treasure #1 by Joe Caramanga, Studio Kawaii, and Eduard Petrovich
  • Hazel and Cha Cha Save Christmas: Tales from the Umbrella Academy by Gerard Way, Scot Allie, Tommy Lee Edwards, and John Workman
  • Mask: I Pledge Allegiance to the Mask #2 by Christopher Cantwell and Patric Reynolds
  • Steeple #3 by John Allison and Sarah Stern
  • Strayed #4 by Carlos Giffoni and Juan Doe



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Star Trek/Green Lantern: The Spectrum War by Mike Johnson – A Review

Star Trek Green Lantern the Spectrum War

Star Trek/Green Lantern: The Spectrum War by Mike Johnson
Art by Ángel Hernández
Science Fiction | Superheroes | Comic Books
Published by IDW Publishing
Released April 12th, 2016
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_3_and_a_half_stars

If you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time, you know I’m obsessed with all things Star Trek. Something else you should know is that the only DC Comics series I care for at all is Green Lantern. So, naturally, this 6-issue comic book series caught my eye.

The Spectrum War brings the Green Lantern universe into Star Trek’s Kelvin timeline after the Lanterns are decimated by Nekron, aka death. Ganthet, a guardian of the universe, uses a last-ditch effort to save the remaining Lanterns called The Last Light, essentially throwing anyone still living into an alternate reality.

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Note: For anyone not familiar with Star Trek, the Kelvin Timeline is that of the newer films, Star Trek, Star Trek Beyond, and Star Trek Into Darkness.

Rings of all emotional spectrums end up in this new universe, with three of the rings ending up with Starfleet officers aboard the USS Enterprise, and the rest going to some old Star Trek enemies. Hal Jordan and the remaining lanterns assist Captian Kirk in fighting the Klingons, Romulans, and Gorn, but make a startling realization that they were not the only ones to cross over into this new universe: Nekron followed them.

The USS Enterprise fights alongside the Lanterns to defeat Nekron, and things are looking grim until they realize that they have a secret weapon that could change the fight for good.

I really enjoyed this series. While I am not a fan of the Star Trek Kelvin timeline and wish this series focused on the Star Trek: The Original Series crew, I tried to overlook that. The story itself is really fun and it was interesting to see which Star Trek characters the Lanterns’ rings chose to wear them.

star trek green lantern art2

The climax of the story and the ensuing battle between Star Fleet, the Lanterns, and Nekron felt too short for how epic it should have felt. Six issues don’t give the writer much freedom, however, so I get it – I just wish there had been more of a fight.

The art, drawn by Ángel Hernández, is wonderful. Lots of color and emotion contained within the panels, which made the entire series more enjoyable.

To read this series, I’d say you just need general knowledge of Star Trek, but you might want to know a bit more about the Green Lantern series. If you’re not familiar with Green Lantern, it might get a bit confusing as to how the rings work and what they represent because it is never explicitly explained.

This series was really enjoyable, although far from perfect. There were times when the story felt a little thin, but overall it was fun watching the crew of the USS Enterprise work together with Hal Jordan and some of the other Lanterns. There is a sequel to this series, called Stranger Worlds, that I’ll be reviewing soon as well.


Have you read any of the Star Trek crossover comics? Are you a Green Lantern fan? Let me know in the comments!




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Shuri, Vol. 1: The Search for Black Panther by Nnedi Okorafor – A Review

Shuri Vol 1 cover

Shuri, Vol. 1: The Search for Black Panther by Nnedi Okorafor
Illustrated by Leonardo Romero
Coloring by Jordie Bellaire
Comic Book | Science Fiction | Superheroes
Published by Marvel
Released May 7th, 2019
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_2_stars

I wanted to like this collection so badly, but it just… wasn’t good.

When I saw that Marvel’s Shuri series was going to be written by science-fiction writer Nnedi Okorafor, I added it to my TBR immediately. I’ve read Okorafor’s Binti, and although I didn’t love that novella, I was intrigued enough by her writing to want to give some of her other work a shot.

Nnedi Okorafor
Nnedi Okorafor

In the Marvel comics world, Shuri was never a prominent character until quite recently. While she at one point took over the role of Black Panther from her brother and played parts in several storylines, she wasn’t ever the center of the story.

With the success of Marvel’s Black Panther film, that’s changed. Which is great! I loved the Black Panther movie and Shuri’s character was delightful. I’m always going to root for a fun, brilliant, female scientist. I wasn’t surprised to see Marvel releasing a Shuri-centric comic book series in the film’s wake.

It didn’t take long into the story to start to realize that Shuri, Vol. 1: The Search for Black Panther wasn’t going to live up to my expectations.

The very first thing I noticed was the atrocious artwork, which you can see below. The art itself was done by Leonardo Romero with the coloring being done by Jordie Bellaire. I don’t know whether to fault the artist or the colorist for this or perhaps both of them:

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It’s just bad. There’s no shading or defining of the character’s faces. It’s blocky and made up mainly of primary colors. There’s no depth to it. The artwork turned me off of this collection before the story even started. Comic books are a medium that depends on the art just as much as the story, and I was surprised to see such a lack of quality in a comic book series that has the potential of attracting new fans.

As a quick side note, the covers for this series were done by a different (and better) artist named Sam Spratt. The covers of all of these issues are gorgeous.

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One of Sam Spratt’s covers

The story takes place after T’Challa, aka Black Panther, takes off into space for an unknown mission. He’s essentially disappeared, and no one is sure how to bring him back. In the meantime, Shuri is approached by her mother and by a secret organization of African leaders and is asked to take on the role of Black Panther until her brother returns.

That’s only one part of this story. The other part is Shuri and friends trying to defeat a giant space insect who eats music and excretes black holes.

The story did absolutely nothing for me. Like the artwork, it was simplistic and one-dimensional. It also required previous knowledge of the characters, especially since Shuri is followed around by multi-dimensional beings and/or ghosts called the ancestors that sprang from a previous series. As I mentioned before, the creation of this series, at least on Marvel’s end, had to have been to attract some movie fans into the comics world, and it can be intimidating to readers when there’s so much of the backstory not explained.

Another issue I had is that there was so much nonsense going on that Shuri’s personality faded into the background. She can be a more interesting character than this series presents her as.

I’m going to give Nnedi Okorafor’s writing one more chance, mainly because I own a copy of her novel Akata Witch. However, I’m starting to think her writing just doesn’t mesh with me. Aside from that, the art in this collection is just terrible. I can’t recommend this series, but I guess if you’re a huge Shuri fan you might still want to read it. I won’t be continuing with this series.


Have you read Shuri, Vol 1? What did you think? Let me know in the comments.


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Monstress by Marjorie M. Liu – A Review

Monstress Volume 1 Marjorie M. Liu

Monstress, Volumes 1-3 by Marjorie M. Liu
Art by Sana Takeda
Fantasy | Science Fiction | Comic Book
Published by Image Comics
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_3_and_a_half_stars

I have no idea where I first heard of Marjorie Liu’s Monstress series, but it’s one that I’ve had on my mind for a few years. While I usually stick to Marvel or Star Trek comics (big surprise, right?), occasionally something from Image (which is a publisher that has some truly stunning titles) will catch my eye.

I was in the mood to re-read volume one and catch up the rest, so I picked up volumes 1-3 from my local library. I ended up only reading the first two, and this review will be discussing both.

To start, let’s talk about the story. There’s no way I can put it better than the official synopses:

Set in an alternate matriarchal 1900’s Asia, in a richly imagined world of art deco-inflected steampunk, MONSTRESS tells the story of a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and who shares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, a connection that will transform them both and make them the target of both human and otherworldly powers.

How perfect is that? This is exactly the kind of comic book series that I need in my life.

The art in the series, done by Sana Takeda, is gorgeous. I love the art deco vibes, and the dark color scheme fits it really well. The look and style of the characters, especially the arcanic characters, are stunning.

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Now, let’s talk about the story itself and the writing.

I read a lot of high fantasy and science fiction, most of which contain a lot of new world-building. In fact, great world-building is one of the things I look for in fiction. It’s why authors like Brandon Sanderson and Leigh Bardugo are some of my favorites. The world-building in Monstress, however, was jumbled and very often confusing. There are also places where there’s quite a bit of info-dumping, which I feel shouldn’t be necessary for a comic book series.

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Writing stories for comic books isn’t easy. The majority of issues are around 22-25 pages and mostly images, which means that the writer needs to be able to craft a compelling narrative that readers can grasp easily and quickly. This doesn’t mean that the story needs to be simple; in fact, many comic books today, even from established publishers like Marvel and DC Comics, are releasing stories that have a lot of depth to them. When I read Monstress, though, I found myself having to flip back and forth multiple times in order to figure out what was going on and to make sense of this new, very complicated world.

The story that Liu has created is absolutely entrancing, and I would love to read more of it. I just don’t feel that a comic book series was necessarily the right way to tell this story. There’s almost too much world-building and lore, especially for a medium where there’s not a lot of room to explore it.

Despite the stunning art, the story was too hard to follow and I found myself no longer enjoying it. I hate that I’m saying this because I really wanted to like this series. It should be one of my favorites, just based on the idea behind it. The execution, though, and the fact that it’s a comic book rather than a novel (which I think would have worked so much better for a story as complicated as this one) made me realize that it really isn’t the series for me.


Have you read any of the Monstress series? If so, what did you think? Let me know in the comments!


Looking for some other great fantasy comic books to read?

The Realm | Skyward | Black Bolt | Doctor Strange: The Oath




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