A Quick View Through the Latest Previews with Locusmortis

Posted: June 22, 2010 in Comics Shipping, Coming Soon, DC Comics, IDW, Image, Marvel, Viz Media
Tags: ,

Welcome to my look at what delights …or horrors….the Diamond catalogue has to offer us for comics due to ship in August. This column up till now has echoed a more positive view of the industry but its time to take the gloves off I think. And we’ll start with Marvel.

MARVEL COMICS

Shadowland: Moon Knight #1 (of 3)
$3.99
32 Pages
Page 43 of Marvel Previews

Last month I quit buying Brightest Day in despair at DC screwing up just after making their comics readable again last year. So I’m looking around to add a couple of titles and I’d been interested in jumping on board Andy Diggle’s Daredevil and Shadowland sounded quite interesting. So I’m checking through Previews and what do I see? Only Marvel doing what they did with Dark Reign and Siege and launching a whole heap of unnecessary one-shots and mini-series alongside the main Shadowland mini in yet another attempt to squeeze money out of comic fans. I’ve known loan sharks that were more subtle in their money gathering methods than Marvel.

If Shadowland had been a lean and mean mini-series running along with the Daredevil title then I would have given it a go but the minute I saw 4 mini-series and a one-shot all in one month the part of my mind that considered ordering Shadowland completely shut down and started blaring “fuck you Marvel” like a psychopathic air-raid siren. I know good writers like Diggle, Layman and Van Lente are involved but this ham-fisted method of trying to grow a Daredevil “Universe” just turned me off, especially with every comic at 3-fucking-99.

And to anyone that says “well the 40 pages includes a back up story”, I don’t fucking care, I want comics that are 32 pages for $2.99, every back-up I’ve read recently comics (except for the Question) has been shit and just went to prove that modern American comic book writers can’t write 6-10 page stories so don‘t even start with that justification.

Marvel Universe Vs The Punisher #1 & 2 (of 4)
$3.99
32 Pages
Page 57 of Marvel Previews

Well you know me, I like to balance out a crap comic and follow up with what should be a great one. Fresh from the surprise hit of Doomwar, Jonathan Maberry is back with a Marvel Knights book with the Punisher standing up for humanity after all the super-heroes have been turned into “sadistic cannibal predators” (is there any other type of cannibal predator?). Goran Parlov joins him on the book as artist, Parlov does great fight scenes and I like his work on Punisher Max even if Jason Aaron’s writing was a bit dumb. The only concern I have is that it’s 2 x $3.99 issues this month and next, which is a bit much. I may wait for the trade on this one .

New Mutants Forever #1
$3.99
40 Pages
Page 79 of Marvel Previews

This is the latest in what seems to be a regular “what if the fucking 1990’s never happened” series of comics that started with the so-so X-Men Forever and then the rather bloody good X-Factor Forever. So here we have the New Mutants pretty much where Claremont left off around 1990 or so. It’s got all the old favourite characters like Dani, Magma, Illyana, Warlock etc, …btw did any one else hate Whiny?…sorry I mean Rahne, damn I just couldn’t stand her character, she was such a whingebag.

Al Rio is on art on this 5 issue mini-series and he’s pretty decent, he’s well known for his good-girl art, he’s kind of like Frank Cho but without that special zing that Cho has. I’ll probably end up chickening out of ordering this one and wait for the trade as Chris Claremont hasn’t written a good comic book in about 15 years so I’ll probably wait for others to review this one first. Still if it is good I’ll be really happy as New Mutants was one of the first American comics I ever bought.

Conclusion:

It’s a real mixed bag from Marvel, the usual good stuff like Atlas, Fantastic Four, Shield, Secret Avengers plus some promising New stuff like Marvel Universe vs. the Punisher, New Mutants Forever and Avengers & the Infinity Gauntlet (Brian Clevinger of Atomic Robo) along with a whole heap of meh (pretty much the whole X-Universe, The Ultimate Universe and anything with Wolverine in it fits into that category. Marvel’s pricing policies leave me confused as usual, tbh I think Stephen Hawking would struggle to figure out Marvel’s pricing structure but while they continue to mess about I’ll continue to be skeptical about how much they give a shit about the fans and the stories.

DC

Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors #1
32 pages
$3.99
Page 72 of Previews

32 pages for $3.99?
Fuck
You
DC

Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #5
40 pages
$3.99
Page 80 of Previews

I’ve read parts 1 and 2 of this and they were ok, not great, not terrible….which is more than you can say about a few DC books the last couple of months. The reason I’m picking this book out is Ryan Sook is on penciling duties and his artwork has improved so much in the last couple of years, he’s an outstanding talent.

Superman: Earth One HC
136 Pages
$19.99
Page 68 of Previews

For a while its been said that DC were going to launch a line of stand alone hardcover graphic novels for its Earth One continuity as a sort of Ultimate Universe or in effect what the All-Star books should have been until Frank Miller completely ruined that line with his “goddam” Batman. JMS and Shane Davis team up to re-tell the origin of Superman in a modern-day context rather than in the 1930’s. Shane Davis art does look pretty sweet and JMS writing for DC has so far been great on Brave and Bold so it might be worth a shot. $19.99 might seem daunting but you can get this at big discounts if you look hard enough.

DC Universe Legacies #4
40 pages
$3.99
Page 92 of Previews

I got issue #1 of Legacies this month and if I’m honest I’d actually forgotten that I’d ordered it. I had read maybe one Len Wein comic in my whole life so I didn’t have many expectations so that’s maybe why I was pleasantly surprised by it. The story is told in a slightly old fashioned way and by that I mean its unlike the decompressed shit that the likes of Millar and Loeb foist on the market and people proclaim them as the best comixz evar! Its also probably why only 3 people and a dog bought this comic but I think its one of the sleeper hits of the year so far. Issue #4 covers the 60’s and especially the Nick Cardy era Teen Titans which I love and even better…..the art is by JOSE LUIS GARCIA-LOPEZ and DAVE GIBBONS.

Conclusion:

An odd and confusing month for DC, one gets the feeling that DC editorial is pulling in several different directions at one. The grim n’gritty copy Marvel brigade has Brightest Day, Titans and $3.99 32 page books and the more sensible side has JMS, Len Wein and Garcia-Lopez. There’s some great stuff coming out from DC…with equal amounts of insultingly bad comics…interesting times.

INDEPENTENTS

Bokurano Ours Vol 2
Publisher: Viz Media
216 pages
$12.99
Page 329 of Previews

Since DC has delivered some awful atrocities masquerading as comics lately I’ve cut back on them and freed up some budget for manga and this is one I identified as being something interesting. It has a similar premise to Shadow Star (from Dark Horse) where a group of kids are being used by shadowy forces, in this case 15 kids are being used to control a huge mecha that battles gigantic alien monsters, it has some resonance with Evangelion as well. I’ve read the first chapter online and it was good stuff, roll on Vol 2.

Last Days of American Crime #3 (of 3)
Publisher: Radical Publishing
56 pages
$4.99
Page 313 of Previews

Issue 2 arrived this month after being horribly late so issue 3 may well be late too but it is very much worth it. The heist story to end all heist stories….literally… by Rick Remender is real edge of the seat stuff and the art by Greg Tocchini is beautiful and gritty at the same time. Either pick up the individual issues which are pretty much graphic novels for the same price that Marvel asks for its slipshod annuals or wait for the trade collection but make sure you get this book.

Also Radical puts out 24 page previews of upcoming series every month, this time around its Mata Hari by Roy Allan Martinez, you can’t lose at that price.

Guardians of the Globe #1 (of 6)
Publisher: Image Comics
32 Pages
$3.50
Page 168 of Previews

A super team from the pages of Invincible written by Robert Kirkman? Just order this comic already for gruds sake! Benito Cerino co-writes (I guess Kirkman does have to sleep) with art by Ransom Getty. Did I say order this already?

Dungeons and Dragons #0
Publisher: IDW
24 pages
$1.00

IDW has gotten the franchise for Dungeons and Dragons from DDP who didn’t do a great job with it and overpriced their trades, but I expect IDW will do a better job. I’m a bit of a sucker for D&D stuff after the classic 1980’s cartoon which I loved and I played AD&D briefly when I was a teenager so this will probably bring back pleasant memories and at $1.00 for a taster issue you can’t really go wrong. The art is by Andrea Di Vito who is pretty damn good

Conclusion:

For the second month running, the Indies are putting out the more interesting new (or newish) series while with Marvel and DC trying to find good new series is tough work at the moment. Magnus Robot Fighter from Dark Horse almost made my list but I’m not a huge fan of artist Bill Reinhold. IDW and Radical continue as two of my current favourite publishers although Boom and Archaia don’t really have anything new this month.

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Comments
  1. cballsack says:

    “This is the latest in what seems to be a regular ‘what if the fucking 1990’s never happened’ series of comics”…

    I loved that line.

  2. generaldark says:

    sooo emerald warriors, do you think it will be good? i didnt really understand how you feel bout it 😄

    • Locusmortis says:

      I’d like to buy the book, I think Tomasi is a great writer but I’m not paying $3.99 for a regular 32 page book.

      Also I do have a fear that DC is diluting the Green Lantern brand too much.

      • Pobra says:

        Do you know if 3.99 is going to be the regular price of the book, or is it just the first issue?
        I’m also a fan of Tomasi and would like to get this book, but there’s no way I can add a new 3.99 title to my pull list right now. If issue 2 goes down to 2.99 i may drop the main GL book for it.

        • Locusmortis says:

          Issue #2 is also $3.99

          This is a test by DC to see how the sales on $3.99 comics go. If they sell less but still make more money by doing this then more titles will go to $3.99. Comics fans should wise up and send a message to DC by not buying this title.

          I have doubts as to whether most comics fans have the intelligence to see what DC is up to, I hope I’m wrong.

  3. hackslash2020 says:

    I’m curious about those hard-cover oneshots in ultimate dc universe.
    Might be a good step towards dc for me cause i read mostly marvel books.

  4. Pobra says:

    Marvel has finally managed to kill my interest in Daredevil. They should have just left him in his lonely little corner of the Marvel U where he belongs. Oh well, my interest started to dwindle with the last couple issues of DD anyway.

    • phil says:

      Oddly after years of not reading DD, I’m now interested in the character again. My last regular reading of the title was the K. Smith/Quesada deal from way back in the Marvel Knights days. I think this is the most that I’ve enjoyed DD since the Miller days. Sadly I’m not that geeked about Shadowlands.

  5. i know superman isn’t coming out until october but when is punisher and guardians of the globe coming out and will i need to read a lot of invincible to know the guardians of the globe. oh and some of you guys who do blogs give me some tips i accidently wiped over a 100 word blog saying how much i was looking forward to earth one sigh.

    • TheMSpot says:

      I would say in regards to your blog, go for it as long as you keep with a theme. It sounds like your going to do a comic book blog so I would like to welcome you to the network and hopefully you will be successful enough that you will be subject of ridicule by a Marvel spokesperson. He he

      Yeah, go for it and I would like to know what you think of DC’s Earth One line.

    • phil says:

      The only thing that I can suggest is to keep your topics varied. Any one thing over an extended period of time is something that you might find that will dampen your ambition. What will happen is something that you’re doing for fun will eventually become a chore. As long as you’re interested in what you’re doing.your audience will hopefully find you. Mostly just have fun 🙂

  6. Dre says:

    Locusmortis, apropos Shadowland and it’s intimidatingly vast tie-ins, they’re all neglible ancillary titles that needn’t be bought. All one will need to wholly enjoy Shadowland is said mini and DD, nothing more. The numerous tie-ins are to only add to the overall scope of the series for those interested in expanding their horizon for the event. If one doesn’t want to buy any of the tie-ins, they lose very little to nothing from the main Shadowland series and it’s only necessary and expected tie-in, DD. This is has been posited by Diggle a few times already in a few interviews. If buying eight books a month was you’re only apprehension about Shadowland than it should now be quelled. Once again, all one needs for this event are Shadowland itself and the DD monthly, nothing more.

  7. rush says:

    I’m only picking up
    Last Days of American Crime #3 (of 3)
    Guardians of the Globe #1 (of 6)

  8. I hope you enjoy MARVEL UNIVERSE VS THE PUNISHER. I was delighted that Marvel allowed me so much creative freedom to write something a bit different.

    Goran Parlov’s artwork is perfect for the story. It has a bleak simplicity that gives every panel the appropriate punch.

    -Jonathan

  9. Insideman says:

    locusmortis–

    Thanks so much for doing this column man. Now when I flip through that dry old rag that Diamond calls “Previews”. I’ll actually be able to laugh my way through it.

    You’ve told me about all I need to know!

    Thanks again! 🙂

    You should start a whole “ranty” line of t-shirts on Cafe Press like:

    $3.99 22-Page Comics
    FUCK YOU MARVEL

    or

    DILUTING GREEN LANTERN
    FUCK YOU DC

    or

    MARVEL & DC
    Making Sure the 90’s
    Never Happened

    • Insideman says:

      I still have a T-Shirt I purchased at San Diego in the late ’90’s– from an Artist/Publisher who was pissed off at Marvel.

      He sold hundreds of them until Marvel had his booth shut down mid-convention.

      It reads, I kid you not, in BIG WHITE LETTERS on a BLACK T-shirt:

      MARVEL CAN SUCK MY DICK

      (Gee, everything IS cyclical!)

      • rush says:

        I guess Marvel seems insecure if they had his booth shut down.

      • Ah, yes…good ol’ Hart Fisher. You can see him wearing that shirt in Chasing Amy.

        J.

        • Insideman says:

          How can you remember all that stuff, Jose?

          Here’s a link to Hart explaining the shirt himself:

          http://www.optimumwound.com/hart-fisher-on-marvel-and-the-most-controversial-t-shirt-in-comics-history.htm

          I had no idea he was still selling them. (Wonder if T-Shirts have “1st Prints”? I’ve got one if they do!)

          I’ve seen Chasing Amy and never remember seeing the shirt. I think I was looking at Joey Lauren Adams the whole time.

          Side note: She just appeared on an episode of “Party Down” a couple of weeks ago. Even though there have been many moons since Chasing Amy– she is still hot.

          • I’ve been a retailer for almost 18 years. I guess it comes with the territory.

            BTW, I get asked that question by customers at least once a week. I have a head full of useless knowledge.

            J.

            • Insideman says:

              Dude, no shit… I went to a LICENSED hypnotherapist to GET RID of a ton of useless knowledge that was crowding my brain.

              And it really worked!

              I used to be able to tell you what (pick a film) grossed in its (pick a week) of release… You could pick any film, any week and I could tell you. Shit like that.

              I was SO glad when that BS was gone. I also stopped smoking after I left. WEIRD.

              I also look like I am counting cards when I play blackjack… but I’m not. I just remember all the cards that have gone before… Even on a 4 or 5 deck shoe. No counting system… It just happens naturally. Can’t fault me for that.

    • Locusmortis says:

      You know what?

      I’m gonna steal your ideas and not give you credit….Bob Kane stylee!

      • Insideman says:

        That is REALLY old school. Knock yourself out.

        • Locusmortis says:

          Thinking about it…since I’d rather get my wisdom teeth re-inserted and then taken out again than go to a convention you can have that concession 😉

          • Insideman says:

            Oh no, I gave conventions too. A long time ago. Cafe Press will let you sell ’em on the internet(s). No con attendance needed.

            Although I am seriously thinking of C2E2 next year. It’s been awhile since I’ve been to Chicago and that con sounded like a lot of fun.

  10. Insideman says:

    gave up (was what I meant) “gave up conventions”

  11. Insideman says:

    Sort of “Previews” related… Bleeding Cool has a list of where all these Hastings stores are located:

    http://www.bleedingcool.com/2010/06/22/finding-your-local-hastings-comic-shop/

  12. MicahSkin says:

    Why the hating on Rahne?

  13. Stamps says:

    I think I might have to grab the trade on Last Days of American Crime. Marvel Universe Vs The Punisher I may get as well. It looks like something I would like.

    Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #5 I am most definitely going to get. Even though I wasn’t really all that impressed with the fist two issue I really want to see where they go with this.

    I am the fist person to get a GL book but I’ve got to say no on Emerald Warriors. I get enough GL books a month and I can’t fucking tolerate Guy Gardner. He’s just my least favorite GL.

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