Diamond Previews, if you’re not in here, you’re probably not in most comic shops and probably off the radar of the average comics reader (well, you’re probably off that radar anyway, but that’s another discussion all together). Let’s talk about some of the most interesting titles in the most recent, December-shipping catalog.
The Street Angel creative team, Brian Maruca and Jim Rugg, have a new 100-page hardcover, Afrodisiac, coming from Adhouse Books. I’m not really a big fan of pastiches of old exploitation films, as this appears to be, but Street Angel was a blast, so this is definitely a book to keep an eye on.
Bob Burden Studios solicits both Flaming Carrot Collected vol. 2 and Mysterymen Adventures vol. 1. Neither are really my thing, but Burden’s earned a pretty solid following and hopefully readers notice these two items. Along similar “not for me, but FYI” lines, Collins Design has a 1280-page (!!) compilation of every KISS comic of all time, titled (obviously) KISS Compendium. Gene Simmons writes the forward. Comics from Marvel, McFarlane, Dark Horse and more included within.
Roger Langridge puts pen to the first issue of an ongoing Muppets series from Boom! I still haven’t read the first miniseries, but I hope to do so soon.
One of the more bizarre solicits comes from Bright Red Rocket, who offers The Naked Cosmos DVD and Mini Comic, a four-part television project created by and starring Love & Rockets’ co-creator Gilbert Hernandez. Somehow, I can’t see myself shelling out $20 for this, but I’ll be hoping feverishly for the library to get a copy. I’m sure it’s something well worth experiencing once.
John Stanley Library: Thirteen Going on Eighteen arrives in stores from Drawn and Quarterly. D&Q’s previous Stanley books, Melvin Monster and Nancy, are treats, especially if you have youngsters, and I expect no less from this one. Look for it.
The only Star Trek series for me, DS9, returns as a new miniseries from IDW. Though I love to see the redheaded children of the Trek universe acknowledged in any form, I still have no interest in actually revisiting them outside the context of the series. Fool’s Gold #1 ships in December. Though I’ll pass on Trek, IDW does have two other titles of some interest:
The Complete Milt Gross: Comic Books and Life Story compiles Gross’ comic strips and He Done Her Wrong, possibly the first “graphic novel.” The Original Johnson vol. 1, by Trevor Von Eeden (remember him?!), is the comics biography of legendary boxer Jack Johnson, and I’m extremely intrigued.
Mercury is Hope Larson’s new book. The very vague solicit offers this: 240 pages of “history, romance, and magical realism”, which sounds either intriguing or utterly tepid Lifetime-TV gibberish. Being a Hope Larson book, I’m leaning toward expecting the former. Simon and Schuster publishes.
And finally, wonderfully, Yen Press brings us an English translation of Yotsuba&! vol. 7. There have been some criticisms of Yen’s handling of vol. 6 (which I have, but haven’t had time to read yet), but I can’t imagine anyone could completely foul up something as wonderful as Yotsuba. This one’s probably my top must-have title of the month.
In the front of Previews, I’d never heard of Joker creator Jerry Robinson and writer Sheldon Stark’s 1950s sci-fi comic strip Jet Scott. Yet Dark Horse has a collection of the first few years, and the solicit alone is worth the money: Jet Scott, agent of Scientifact, Banthrax germs, spontaneously combusting Saudi pipelines, and bizarre ocean creatures. I can’t wait for this one!
DC’s got the fourth Starman Omnibus and the final Young Liars trade paperback. Both should be excellent purchases. Starman scribe James Robinson has a collection of his current Superman run, Superman: Mon-El in the catalog also. The first book of his Man of Steel tenure, Coming of Atlas, was a huge letdown, and I’ll have to think long and hard about how much rope to give his run. I love Superman, but I’ve dropped the titles many times before and don’t mind doing so again. (Ironically, I planned to quit after Johns’ Superman and the Legion book, but hung around because of Robinson’s involvement. Now Robinson’s getting extra rope so I can see if Greg Rucka gives the books a charge, but the fraying is nearly complete now.) I may page through the trade paperback of Denny O’Neil and Adam & Andy Kubert’s old Doc Savage series, The Silver Pyramid, though it seems more a library title than a purchase option.
And I still can’t believe how many titles Marvel flings at the wall, and I’m indifferent to a huge majority of it, but I’m genuinely excited for the hardcover edition of Thor: Tales of Asgard by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby. However, can anybody please explain to me why Olivier Coipel, a splendid artist in his own right, is providing the cover for this volume? Because I think I speak for many fans of this classic material when I say, we want Jack Kirby’s artwork on the cover! C’mon, Marvel, fix this while there’s time. Where’s the Jack Kirby for cover artist of Thor: Tales of Asgard petition?
I’ve heard a few good things about the Timely 70th Anniversary comics, and I’d be tempted if the hardcover listed in Previews included the Al Williamson-drawn Sub-Mariner story. Don’t see Al’s name in the solicit, however. Three other Marvels that I’ve heard positives regarding have new collections also: X-Factor, Hercules, and Guardians of the Galaxy, and I may look for any of them at the library, though I’ve had little luck with that so far.