Monday, November 1, 2010

Great last couple of weeks of comics!

These past two weeks have seen quite the plethora of great new comics. I'm not going to give a shout out to all of them because there's not enough room here on my blog (grin) and I do have other behind the scenes type things to do here at Alternate Reality Comics! With this display here, you'd think that I'm getting a payoff from DC!

Two books I want to mention here from this display are the Superman Earth One original graphic novel by JMS and Shane Davis and the new hardcover version of Luthor by Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo. Superman Earth One is a great new version of the Superman mythos and besides the stellar creative team of JMS and Shane davis, the inking by Sandra Hope and coloring by newcomer (at least I think she's a newcomer) Barbara Clardo make this an incredibly nice production all around. This will make a nice gift for yourself or to turn someone else on to the wonderment of comics once DC gets more of these in the pipeline as it is selling really well (I still have a couple of copies, but I expect those to be gone today). Luthor is exactly what it sounds like, a Lex Luthor centric graphic novel by the creative team of Azzarello and Bermejo, which serves as a great companion book to their Joker graphic novel from a couple of years ago (they did Luthor first though).

Speaking of Lex Luthor, Paul Cornell has been writing Action Comics for the past few months and although my first thought upon hearing this was "oh great, more Lex Luthor" thinking he's been over-used, Paul Cornell's smart writing as made his Lex Luthor Action Comics one of the super hero comics I most look forward to each month. This past week's issue has Death stopping by and if you aren't already reading this, well this is one of those out of the ballpark comics! And the art by Pete Woods is top notch also!
Fantastic Four hasn't been as good as it's been these past few months since Jonathan Hickman stepped in as writer. Hickman, who also writes Shield and Secret Warriors for Marvel is turning out to be a great thinking outside of the box writers and his newest FF story, Three, in which one of the members is supposed to be taking the dirt nap for a while, is surely going to be a seminal Fantastic Four story that people will fondly remember for years.

Incognito Bad Influences is another mini series by Ed Brubaker and Sean Philips of their creator owned super-villain companion to their hard boiled Criminal creator owned series. Basically Inconito is just like Criminal, except the central characters in Incognito have super powers, but it has the same great crime fiction / noir tone. This first issue is off to a very strong start.
Abattoir is another great horror surprise from Radical Comics. Written by Michael Peterson, Rob Levin, and Troy Petri and drawn by Bing Cansino, this like Radical Comics' Driver For The Dead, has a fairly fresh premise. Abattoir means slaughterhouse and that's what happens here - a seemingly normal family man slices and dices his family and friends at his house party! One of the central characters of Abattoir is a real estate agent and one of the property he has to sell is the house where this horror happened. Along comes Jebediah, who wants to buy this house. Why? Well I'm going to hope we'll find out in the next five issues and I'm going to hope that I'm able to get more copies of the first issue of Abattoir next week here at the shop!

Fables is a comic / graphic novel that I hardly spend that much time talking about even though I really like this comic. I think part of this is due to the fact that Fables doesn't need real shout outs from me as a lot of people are already enjoying this book. But the newest Fables #99 is a great jumping on point if you don't want to wait for the trade collections or if you want to see what all of the fuss is about. The premise of Fables is that all of the fairy tale characters such as Snow White and Sleeping Beauty actually live amongst us. With Fables #99, writer / creator Bill Willingham sets up the next big story arc with a spotlight issue on uber villain Mister Dark and I dare anyone to look at guest artist Inaki Miranda's work here and not want to take this home and stare at each panel. Regular Fables artist Mark Buckingham is, of course, great, but I definitely want to see more Miranda!

Madame Xanadu has been another great Vertigo series, which sadly is coming to a close next issue. But two weeks ago we got another great self contained issue of the Extra-Sensory story arc called A Taste Of Things To Come, in which the central character, Carly, develops a super taste ability that causes her to experience where what she's eating came from. Yes, this is kind of like the premise of Chew, but as I've said before, how much of anything is truly original and it's what you d with that concept that will set it apart. Writer, Matt Wagner certainly does this here and another new great artist, Marian Churchland, will definitely be an artist to look out for.

I want to give another shout out to two comics that have a very small audience, The Weird World of Jack Staff by Paul Grist and The Bulletproof Coffin by David Hine. These two comics take superhero comics' conventions and turn them inside out. I think the creators of these comics know these books are going to play to a very small audience, but I don't think they care, rather they just seem compelled to play in their weirdverses and damn the torpedoes! Jack Staff and Bulletproof Coffin really aren't just weird for weird's sake and they aren't as inaccessible as you may think if you haven't given them a shot already.

Another comic / graphic novel, The Walking Dead, by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard, like Fables, certainly doesn't need my little Ich Liebe Comics! blog to find readers, but I want to say that for the two or three of you out there who haven't checked out The Walking Dead, it's not "just" a zombie comic, it's a book with strong characters who happen to live in a world largely populated by zombies. The Walking Dead is never predictable and it's one of those comics that will make you want the next issue right away after reading the last page of every issue. The Walking Dead television show which just started on AMC last night is getting incredible reviews and the early response seems to be overwhelmingly favorable, so hopefully it does well enough that we will get a Sopranos length television series out of it!

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