Amazing Spider-Man #583: Because President-Elect Barack Obama once mentioned collecting Spider-Man comics, Marvel is putting him on a variant cover of this book, and including him in a five-page story by Zeb Wells and Todd Nauck. They say. I’m sure the fact that doing so garners crazy media attention and, because of the peculiarities of variant cover schemes, will inflate sales and set off buying frenzies, had something to do with it. Obama also mentioned collecting Conan comics. I hope Dark Horse is working on a series where he travels back in time to team-up with the Cimmerian barbarian.
Amazing Spider-Girl #28: Tom Defalco and Ronald Frenz pit Mayday Parker against an all-new, all-different Green Goblin. His secret identity? Peter Parker. Look for a special back-up and a variant cover featuring Sasha and Malia Obama. No, wait, the back-up is actually about “Li’l Benjy, The Spectacular Spider-Baby” (with art by Colleen Coover), and there is no variant cover. My mistake.
BPRD: The Black Goddess #1: The first of a five-issue miniseries by co-writers Mike Mignola and John Arcudi and artist Guy Davis. It features a nice-looking cover by Kevin Nowlan, and a Michelle Obama variant cover. (Sorry, I’ll stop now, I swear). Three-page preview here.
Faces Of Evil: Prometheus: Grant Morrison’s evil, anti-Batman debuted in 1998’s January villain spotlight event “New Year’s Evil,” so it’s perhaps fitting that he gets a one-shot in this year’s January villain spotlight event. He once had the entire JLA on their knees, but the villain has had his rep badly tarnished by his inclusion in some pretty bad stories since, including a long-ish stint as Hush’s henchman. Will writer Sterling Gates and artist Federico Dalbochio be able to restore him to his former glory? This one-shot, billed as a prelude to the upcoming Justice League series, is only one of this week’s many Faces Of Evil branded books. Action Comics #873 wraps-up the “New Krypton” crossover with Lex Luthor and his kryptonite collection on the cover, Booster Gold #16 features the not-technically evil WWI killing machine Baron Hans von Hammer, the Enemy Ace, Green Arrow/Black Canary #16 features evil archer Merlyn, Green Lantern Corps #32 features the ultra-creepy Sinestro Corps member with the goofy name of Kryb (the one who’s hunchback is full of babies), Nightwing #152 finds Dick Grayson borrowing his old boss’ villain Ra’s al Ghul, and, finally, Titans #9 has one-time good guy Jericho as the cover villain. Whew!
Final Crisis #6: Now that Secret Invasion has wrapped up, DC’s big crossover story is officially the biggest event comic going. This is the penultimate chapter, a 40-page, $3.99 issue by Grant Morrison, J.G. Jones, Carlos Pacheco and Jesus Merino. The solicitation promises, “Supergirl vs. Mary Marvel! Superman vs. Darkseid! The fate of the Flash! And the incredible return of the New Gods!” and this issue will allegedly also contain the actual ending of “Batman R.I.P.” Dr. Hurt was actually the Fourth World body possessed by Virman Vundabar. You heard it here first!
Phantom Annual 2008: Apparently running at least a month late, seeing as how it’s 2009 and all, this 48-page, $5.99 2008 Moonstone release by Mike Bullock, Kevin Grevioux Samicler Goncalves and Jason Jensen features a team-up between Lee Falk’s Phantom and Lee Falk’s Mandrake the Magician.
Presidential Material Barack Obama (Third Printing): Well, if you have any trouble tracking down the Obama variant of ASM, you could always pick up IDW’s highly successful (and not bad at all) biography comic featuring the president elect. (Check the dollar bins for copies of the first printing of the John McCain issue).
Spider-Man: Amazing Friends: The stories in this $9.99, 96-page digest are culled from various titles and vary wildly in quality, but you can’t argue with a creative line-up that includes (deep breath) Keith Giffen, Paul Tobin, Karl Kesel, Rick Burchett, Colleen Coover, Chris Giarrusso, Nick Dragotta, Patrick Olliffe and others. The highlight, at least for those of us of a certain age who grew up with a certain Spidey cartoon, is probably the one by Sean McKeever that gives the collection its title, the one in which Spidey tries to set Iceman and Firestar up on a date. This actually looks like a pretty great week for all-ages Marvel comics. Marvel Adventures Vol. 1: Triple Threat collects the first four issues of the newest MA series, in which writer Paul Tobin imagines Iron Man, Spider-Man and the Hulk as three friends who just kinda hang out together in their costumes, getting into amusing scrapes. It includes stories like Hercules asking them to dog-sit Cerberus and Orthus, Kang attempting to conquer the future using a tasty snack chip, and reformed evil master of sound Klaw forming a country and western band. (Well worth parting with a mere $9.99 over). In Marvel Adventures Spider-Man #47, writer Todd Dezago teams up with artist Sanford Greene for a Spidey and Prowler team-up, and Marvel Adventures Super Heroes #7 features the origin of Thor, by Louise Simonson, Rodney Buchemi and Jeremy Freeman. Hmm…Thor and Simonson. Those two things tend to go together pretty well, don’t they?
Super Friends #11: If you can resist this J. Bone cover, you’ve got far greater willpower than I:
Making this month’s Super Friends all the more irresitable, it guest-stars Bat-Mite and Mr. Mxyzptlk and features interior art by Chynna “Blue Monday” Clugston.
Zombie Cop: Believe it or not, there are still premises involving zombies yet to be attempted. Writer Jeff Mariotte and artist Szymon Kudranski cross cop-about-to-turn-into-a-zombie off that list with this 96-page, $9.99 original graphic novel. Image Comics also finishes up two miniseries this week. The third and final issue of Kat Cahill, Jim Valentinno and Seth Damoose’s I Hate Gallant Girl ships this week, as does Joe Kelly and J.M. Ken Niimura’s I Kill Giants.