Unless I missed a version somewhere, this will be the third attempt at a new Doom Patrol ongoing series this decade, following John Arcudi and Tan Eng Huat’s 2001 series, which teamed Robotman with an all-new team of heroes and lasted 22 issues, and then John Byrne’s 2004 series, which involved a continuity reboot that Geoff Johns undid in the pages of Teen Titans and only lasted 18 issues.
Will this attempt fare any better, and hit, say 24 or 36 issues? I can’t hazard a guess. It’s written by Keith Giffen (who’s had mixed success with franchise revitalization in the past), it’s drawn by Matthew Clark (who’s done a lot of work for DC lately, but mostly on out of the way stuff), and it seems to be playing it pretty safe, using the original characters and not rebooting the franchise or doing anything crazy.
It’s also going to be a $4 book, which may make it a tougher sell. On the other hand, it’s going to include a Metal Men back-up by the beloved Justice League International creative team of Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire (and Maguire draws real good Metal Men; just see 2000’s Silver Age: The Brave and The Bold #1 if you need proof of that).
So I guess we’ll see how the market receives it in a few months, and we’ll see if it’s any good tomorrow. I’m certainly going to give it a shot.
Abstract Comics Anthology: I’m one of those who considers the first two words of this title to be an oxymoron. That, ironically, probably makes me a good candidate for reading this book. It’s edited by art historian and abstract-comic creator Andrei Molotiu and, according to publisher Fantagraphics, it is “the first collection devoted to this budding genre.” You can’t argue with the list of contributors: R. Crumb, Patrick McDonnell, Mark Badger, Gary Panter, Lewis Trondheim, James Kochalka, Blaise Larmee, Panayiotis Terzis, Noah Berlatsky and a whole mess of others. It’s $40 for 200 pages, and you can take a look here.
Agents of Atlas #9: Hey, it’s a new issue of my second favorite Marvel Comic! (My heart still belongs to Herc). In this issue, good guy-pretending-to-be-bad Jimmy Woo looks up his ex-girlfriend, who it turns out is also in control of her own criminal empire. But is she also just pretending to be evil, or has she gone full villain? If you’ve yet to jump on the Agents of Atlas bandwagon, this week also sees the release of a $25, 185-page hardcover collecting the first five issues of the ongoing, plus shorter stories from various anthology titles. Personally, I’d prefer a trade, but only because I’m cheap. AoA may be on the fringes of the Dark Reign story/event/branding exercise in that, you know, Brian Michael Bendis isn’t writing it or anything, but it’s one of the more perfect tie-ins, what with its heroes pretending to be villains vs. villains pretending to be heroes set-up. Basically, the Agents are the Anti-Cabal, and Jimmy Woo is the anti-Norman Osborn. And he has better hair.
All Winners Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1: I guess I didn’t realize just how much I was enjoying these specials until a week went by without one. Man, I’m going to miss these when they’re gone—maybe Marvel will follow-up next year with 71st Anniversary Specials? This one focuses on a Golden Age super-team made up of Namor, Cap and Bucky, The Torches, Miss America and The Whizzer, and it’s by writer Karl Kesel and artist Steve Uy. It’s $3.99, but should include Golden Age back-ups, as all the previous ones have.
The Complete Jack Survives: Painter Jerry Moriarity’s short vignettes about his father’s life in the 1940s and ‘50s, which were first published in RAW magazine a few decades back, are all collected into this large-format, 80-page, $35 collection from Buenaventura Press.
Frankenstein’s Womb: While I’m sure Womb is more accurate, I bet Frankenstein’s Vagina would have moved a few more copies. This is the Warren Ellis-written, Marek Oleksicki-drawn story project that David mentioned yesterday.
Irredeemable #5: I’ve been reading Mark Waid and Peter Krause’s Superman goes bananas series, and while it’s not exactly my cup of tea, Boom Studios is certainly making it easy to taste test this particular type of tea this week (Oh metaphor, will I ever master you?). The latest issue of the series is only 99-cents, while the first trade collection of the series, collecting the first four issues, is only $9.99. Keeping in mind that Iredeemable is a $3.99-for-22-pages book, that’s a hell of a value. So if you were waiting for the trade, or kind of curious about the series, you’re not going to better chance to try it out then tomorrow.
Metal Men: Wow, it’s a pretty big week for Metal Men fans (I’m sure there are some Metal Man fans out there. I like ‘em, and Dan DiDio likes ‘em, so that’s at least two of us). In addition to their back-up in the previously mentioned Doom Patrol and the fifth-installment of their DiDio-written, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez and Kevin Nowlan-drawn weekly strip in Wednesday Comics, there’s this, a trade paperback collection of Duncan Rouleau’s eight-part miniseries kinda sorta spinning out of 52. The only aspect of the miniseries I didn’t care for was how difficult it could be to keep the timelines straight month to month, as the story occurred in several different time periods and there was a great deal of time travel between those periods, a problem I imagine won’t exist when you can read the whole thing in one sitting. It’s 200 pages for $15.
The Red Circle: The Hangman: DC finally starts publishing J. Michael Straczynski comics, with this, the first of several specials intended to get modern DC comics readers to care about the old Archie/MLJ characters. This one will be illustrated by Tom Derenick and Bill Sienkiewicz, which means we’ve finally gotten the Straczynski/Sienkiewicz project I’ve always secretly dreaded. Spellcheck, don’t fail me now!
The Saga of Solomon Kane: What if Conan…wore a pilgrim hat? That’s how I like to think of Robert E. Howard’s 16th century puritan bad-ass, and I plan to think about him a lot when I tuck into this 415-page, $20, black-and-white, phonebook-style chunk of reprints. It collects all of the Savage Sword of Conan short stories from the 1970s, as well as material from Conan Saga, Kull and The Barbarians, Marvel Preview, Monsters Unleashed and Dracula Lives. Roy Thomas, Howard Cyakin, Neal Adams, Al Williamson and Bill Wray are among the creators whose work is collected. Short preview here.
Tyrese Gibson’s Mayhem #1: I’m always skeptical of vanity comics from celebrities, and I’m doubly skeptical when the celebrity’s name is right there in the title, with an apostrophe s, as if that ownership is the most important aspect of the project. But hey, it’s not like every comic book publisher publishes every one of their comics to specifically please me, you know? This is actor/model Gibson’s story about “the embodiment of vengeance and raw justice,” who, “along with his sexy but deadly partner Malice” to stop the brutal crime wave of a Las Angeles crime kingpin known only as Big X. Gibson shares writing credits with Mike Le and William Wilson, while Tone Rodriguez provides the art. Also in the comics from folks famous for things other than making comics department is Incarnate #1, a series being written and illustrated by Nick Simmons, the son of KISS frontman Gene Simmons. The premise doesn’t sound all that much more original than Gibson’s—immortal vampire people being hunted by humans—but it’s nice to see Simmons so committed. I guess we’ll know tomorrow if either of them are any good.
Spider-Man: Crime and Punisher: I like this title. This is a collcetion of recent Amazing Spider-Man comics by Marc Guggenheim, Joe Kelly, Zeb Wells, Chris Bachalo, Barry Kitson, Paolo Rivera and others. It’s $15 for a 140-pages. As for more current goings-on n the Amazing Spider-verse, this week’s ASM #601 features the return of Mary Jane, the wife Spider-Man traded to the devil in exchange for a weekly publishing schedule. It’s by writer Mark Waid and artist Mario Alberti, and features an MJ-centric cover by J. Scott Campbell.
You know, Campbell’s best known for drawing allegedly sexy ladies, but as this piece illustrates, he draws really nice remote controls, couches and bricks too.
Ultimatum: Fantastic Four Requiem #1, Ultimatum: X-Men Requiem #1: The Ultimate characters who aren’t going to get new books when the Ultimate line changes its name to Ultimate Comics get one last one-shot to deal with all the gory violence they experienced in last week’s Ultimatum #5. Joe Pokaski, Robert Atkins and Mark Morales handle the UFF swan song, while Aron Coleite and Ben Oliver handle the UXM. Both books are $3.99.