This week we're going to take a look at all the goodies I'm pre-ordering for December. I'll tell you what... it's a lot of stuff.
A whole big heaping lot.
So, stop your yappin' and let's get started...
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #9
So far, this series has completely and totally satisfied me. Well, 98% completely and totally. Occasionally I wish the artist was just a teeny-tiny better, but it's a quibble. Most of the time, everyone looks like who they're supposed to look like.
The writing is fine stuff indeed! In fact, although it may be somewhat blasphemous to admit this, I'm enjoying the Brian K. Vaughan arc even more than the Joss Whedon issues that preceded it.
Sorry, Joss, but that's just the way it is...
SALVATION RUN #2 (Of 7)
Limited series by Bill Willingham, which would normally be a not-so-good thing in my book... I love his work on Fables but have disliked pretty much everything else that I've read of his. But I like the set-up for this... all of DC's super-villains have been stranded on some prison planet kind of place and they start scheming and making-and-breaking alliances to escape.
If I were on a prison planet with all of DC's super-villains, here's what I'd do...
1) Try to get on Lex Luthor's good side mighty fast. If there's going to be a successful escape, he's clearly gonna be the one to pull it off.
2) Avoid the Joker. Avoid shaking his hand. Avoid putting my face anywhere near that flower he's got in his lapel.
3) Hide behind a really, really big rock.
I suppose that's why no one's written a limited series about me being stuck on a planet with DC's super-villians.
BATMAN AND THE OUTSIDERS #3
Why-oh-why would I even consider buying this? Because it ties into Salvation Run and guest-stars the Justice League, that's why. None of which means it's going to be any good, but I feel strangely optimistic that, even though it won't be great, it'll at least be entertaining.
Here's the soliciation text:
Batman’s dual loyalties are tested as the Outsiders and the Justice League clash over SALVATION RUN — but the Outsiders’ underground work has already brought an architect of the Run over to their side!
See? That doesn't sound too bad, does it?
UNCLE SAM AND THE FREEDOM FIGHTERS #4 (Of 8)
Another strange pick for me... I've never read a single issue of this or the limited series that preceded it. As an interesting (?) side-note, hwoever, I do own the entire, original Freedom Fighters series from the 1970s. It's complete crap, of course, but as a kid I totally loved it.
Nowadays I honestly can't remember much from that series. I think their main nemesis was a guy named the Silver Ghost or something like that. Which is kind of a stupid name, I guess. Particularly since I don't recall him actually being a ghost. I suppose it sounded better than Silver Guy, though. Or Silver-licious. "Silver Ghost" at least sounds like you've got something going on. Although people are bound to be disappointed when they find out that you're, y'know, not really a ghost...
As best I can recall, the Freedom Fighters were from another Earth (this was in the pre-Crisis days) where the Nazis had won World War II. They first appeared in an old Justice League of America story in which the JLA went to their Earth (Earth X? Maybe...) and helped them to defeat the Nazis.
Of course, coming from a world where the Nazis won World War II isn't such an interesting story-hook after the Justice League of America has come over and defeated the Nazis for you.
Anyway, for some reason the Freedom Fighters decided that they were bored with their world ("Geez... all the Nazis have been defeated. There's nothing to do...") and so decided to travel over to Earth 1 and hang out there for a while.
Since that isn't much of a hook for a series ("They're from another world that's just like this one but now they're here for no particular reason!!!"), they were quickly turned into one of those teams-on-the-run-from-the-law, accused of a crime they didn't commit, yadda-yadda-yadda. They bickered a lot, in what was clearly supposed to be a Marvel-ish approach to superheroes. And there was a two-issue team-up with Wonder Woman that just knocked my socks off when I was a kid. I think the cliff-hanger involved Wonder Woman being killed and, young and naive as I was, I thought they'd really killed her off.
As it turned out, however, I'm pretty sure it turned out that Wonder Woman was not, in fact, dead.
Clearly, this was in the pre-Dan Didio days...
Anyway, I've had no real interest in the current version of the team, but the solication text has piqued my interest...
The Doll Man War begins! Plus, Red Bee’s daring escape from a government lab. And if that’s not enough...the return of Neon the Unknown!
Call me crazy, but something about that made me flash to early Grant Morrison stories... I mean, the Doll Man War begins??? How cool is that??? Plus the return of Neon the Unknown???
Dude, I'm totally there.
DETECTIVE COMICS #839
ALL STAR SUPERMAN #10
ACTION COMICS #860
Continuing the Legion of Super-Heroes storyline. This is gonna rock...
BLUE BEETLE #22
Finally gave Blue Beetle a try and, hey, what do you know...? It's actually pretty good!
BRAVE AND THE BOLD #9
LOVING this series!!! Mark Waid + George Perez = Comic-Book Bliss.
And I extra-especially love this cover... it's Silver Age - astic!!!
The Book of Destiny’s been opened, but look who’s come spilling out…the Metal Men! The Blackhawks! The Newsboy Legion! And the new Atom and Hawkman team!
Speaking of Mark Waid's return to greatness...
I'm really enjoying this series... I like where Mark Waid has gone with the storyline, establishing Wally West as a dad of two super-powered kids. Very fun. And I very much like the art by Acuna.
Good super-hero-y fun, without all the usual DC angst and continuity-incest...
GREEN LANTERN #26
GREEN LANTERN CORPS #19
GREEN LANTERN SINESTRO CORPS SECRET FILES #1
It's the conclusion of the Sinestro Corps War storyline...
Hm. If the Doll Man War and the Sinestro Corps War got in a fight, I wonder who would win...?
JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA #11
I just read the September issue of this, which was the first issue of the Kingdom Come storyline... or maybe it was the prelude? I dunno...
Anyway, it mostly consists of the JSA hanging out in a fire-station, making pancakes and goofing around.
Possibly the best comic of the month. [Except maybe for Marvel Adventures: The Avengers, guest-starring Hawkeye!!!]
Geoff Johns does a great job with the writing, but the real star of this particular issue is artist Dale Eaglesham.
He has really hit his peak with this issue... the amount of background work and the detail on all the different characters... this is some first-class stuff.
I really wish they would take the artist from Justice League of America, Joe Benitez, and grab him by the scruff of his neck and stick his face in front of this comic-book and say, "See??? This is what we hired you to do!!! This!!!"
Dale Eaglesham, I salute you!!!
JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #16
But not really...
I was so totally bummed out by the lame art on the latest JLA that I hereby refuse to buy any more issues drawn by Joe Benitez. My apologies to Dwayne McDuffie, but Benitez's art is crap and I'm not going to spend money to look at it.
LEGION OF SUPER HEROES #37
Jim Shooter's first issue in some 30-odd years!!! This may end up sucking.. it's very possible. But, I can't resist. When I was a wee little lad, Jim Shooter was writing the Legion. Hell, even before I was a wee little lad, he was writing the Legion. It's almost like if Stan Lee returned to writing Spider-Man. Sure, it probably wouldn't be nearly as good as anticipated, but still... how could you not pick it up to find out???
WONDER WOMAN #15
She's good. But can even she save this title...? It remains to be seen.
It's only 74 cents through my subscription service, mailordercomics.com, so I figure I'll give it a try even though I really do not like the writer, Brian Wood, one tiny bit...
Incidentally, this is a new Vertigo title... I've been planning a column about Vertigo and my theory about why it's doing so badly, sales-wise, and what they need to do to save that imprint.
Maybe next week...?
INFINITE HORIZON #1
Also only 74 cents. And the art is by Phil Noto. I can't remember where I've seen his stuff before, but I do remember really liking it...
SUBURBAN GLAMOUR #4 (Of 4)
ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #117
ULTIMATES 3 #1
I am only getting this because it's another 74 cent comic from mailordercomics. I am, however, extremely dubious...
The promo art looks dreadful and writer Jeph Loeb is not to be trusted...
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #546
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #547
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #548
Written by Dan Slott.
Art by Steve McNiven.
That's all I really need to know.
SPIDER-MAN FAMILY #6
SPIDER-MAN FAMILY #6
Written by CHRIS ELIOPOULOS
Pencils & Cover by CHRIS ELIOPOULOS
(ribbit) Time for a team-up, Spidey! (ribbit) Let’s see…Iron Man’s busy (ribbit), Captain America’s a little under the weather (ribbit), the FF are doing their own (ribbit) thing…who’s not busy this month? (ribbit) FROG THOR!!!!!!!!And while you’re (ribbit) trying to figure out how a frog holds a (ribbit) hammer, you can read the classic (ribbit) archive material and Spider-Man J!
104 pages…best (ribbit) deal in comics!104 PGS./Rated A …$4.99
ANNIHILATION CONQUEST #2 (Of 6)
AVENGERS INITIATIVE #8
CAPTAIN AMERICA #33
FANTASTIC FOUR ISLA DE LA MUERTE #1
I just read a really excellent interview with the writer of this one-shot, Tom Beland.
GIANT SIZE AVENGERS SPECIAL #1
Also from newsarama.com we have this interview with one of the several writers contributing stories to the above, Matt Yocum. It starts off kind of normal and dull but then you find out what this guy does for a living and, well, it's interesting...
I was planning to pick this up anyway, but reading that interview made me extra-especially want to get it...
IMMORTAL IRON FIST #12
MARVEL ADVENTURES IRON MAN #8
Written by FRED VAN LENTE
Penciled by RAFA SANDOVAL
Cover by SKOTT YOUNG
Ambushed by the villainess Jolt, his armor ruined, Tony Stark finds himself trapped in an isolated village run by folks who have chosen to live a peaceful, agrarian 19th century existence...without any technology. With Jolt hot on his trail, what's a tech-dependent hero to do? That's right: hole up in the blacksmith shed and hammer out an all-new suit of STEAM-POWERED ARMOR! Aw, yeah.
Nice cover, eh?
This is one of those Marvel Adventures titles, which means it's "all-ages." Normally, that would be a turn-off, but Jeff Parker's Avengers stories for Marvel Adventures have been so frickin' good that I'm now willing to try out some of the others. Also, the writer of this issue, Fred Van Lente, is the same guy who's writing M.O.D.O.K.s 11, which I'm enjoying tremendously.
So, I'm willing to give it a try...
And, hey, a steam-powered Iron Man armor??? That sounds neat...
MARVEL ADVENTURES AVENGERS #19
This one is not written by Jeff Parker, alas, but it's by Ty Templeton, who's usually pretty reliable, and the story sounds interesting... but darn it, I hope Parker returns to this series soon!!!
OMEGA UNKNOWN #3 (Of 10)
WHAT IF CIVIL WAR
Written by ED BRUBAKER, KEVIN GREVIOUX & CHRISTOS GAGE
Penciled by MARKO DJURDJEVIC, GUSTAVO & HARVEY TOLIBAO
Cover by MARC SILVESTRI Wraparound Cover by MARKO DJURDJEVIC
When a stranger appears in front of Iron Man, visiting Captain America’s symbolic grave at Arlington, he is told of two diverse ways CIVIL WAR could’ve concluded. The first: What If CAPTAIN AMERICA led all the heroes against the Registration Act? The second: What if IRON MAN lost the Civil War? Join writers Ed Brubaker (Captain America, Daredevil), Kevin Grevioux (New Warriors, the movie-Underworld) and Christos Gage (Civil War: Casualties of War, World War Hulk: X-Men, TV’s Law & Order: SVU) in a giant-size issue that answers the questions Iron Man never wanted to ask!With interior art by superstar cover painter Marko Djurdjevic, artist Gustavo (Marvel Age Spider-Man, Green Lantern, TMNT and The Amory Wars) and newcomer Harvey Tolibao (Iron Man Annual, Star Wars: Knight of the Old Republic), this issue will fulfill your Civil War withdrawal!56 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99
Sure, this might suck. I mean, yes, it's a What If...? story. They tend to not be so good.
On the other hand, I really-really-really enjoyed the Civil War limited series, so I'm kind of interested to see where they go with this. And, even more importantly, those are some mighty good writers they've got working on this. So, I'm thinking this might just be worth picking up...
ASTONISHING X-MEN #24
The final Whedon issue, I think...
This storyline has actually been pretty underwhelming, but I feel like I've invested this much in it, might as well see it through to the bitter end...
CABLE DEADPOOL #48
X-MEN FIRST CLASS VOL 2 #7
ANGEL AFTER THE FALL #2
This is the second issue of "Angel: Season 6" and if you haven't read Brian Lynch's Spike: Shadow Puppets then it's entirely possible that, upon seeing that someone other than Joss Whedon is doing the writing, you might say to yourself, "Self, I don't think this will be very good at all. And who is this Brian Lynch fellow anyway? And what does he want?"
I'll tell you what, though...
This is gonna be good.
30 DAYS OF NIGHT BEYOND BARROW #3
Art by Bill Sienkiewicz.
----------------------------------And then there are the comics that I get from my local store, which include Godland, Nova, Metal Men, New Avengers, Booster Gold, and some other things that I'm not able to remember at the moment because I'm old and my brain is getting crusty.
So, as you can see, there are a plethora of reasons to go on living, at least through December of 2007.
Well, I've blathered on long enough for one day... I hope that you walk away from this "coming attractions extravaganza" just a little bit wiser and, perhaps, a little bit more jazzed about the upcoming December.
I'll see y'all next week and, hey... let's be careful out there!
- Hill Street Paul