Word on the street is that the annual return of winter and its attendant conditions have wreaked and/or are wreaking and/or may wreak a certain amount of havoc with comics shipping this week, so keep that in mind before you show up at your local shop and yell at your local shopkeep for not having something you might have been expecting. And drive carefully on your way to and from this week, huh?
27 #1: The title of writer Charles Soule and artist Renzo Podesto’s four-issue Image Comics series alludes to “the 27 Club” of dead rock stars. You know, Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin—all dead at 27. Fictional rock star (and series protagonist) Will Garland is also 27…will he be joining the club himself? That’s one of the questions in this series,which will be printed in Image’s “Golden Age format,” used for King City and Cowboy Ninja Viking. Preview here.
DCU Holiday Special 2010: As you can see from the title, this is a holiday special, not a Christmas special, which is likely to upset anyone who believes in (or pretends to believe in, for money) the American media/secular culture’s “War on Christmas.” But wait, it gets worse! Listen to the solicitation from dccomics.com: “From the dawn of time (Anthro) to the far-flung future (Legion of Super-Heroes), sentient life has honored the winter holidays with celebrations and rituals as diverse as the universe itself! Join DC Comics – and a stellar team of writers and artists – to honor the vast and diverse holidays of the DC Universe.” Sounds pretty pagan to me! And also, sort of awesome—these holiday anthologies and 80-Page Giants DC’s been cranking out the last few years have tended to be extremely hit-or-miss, even by the standards of anthologies, but I’m intrigued enough by the thought of seeing the holidays that cavemen, teenagers from the future and I don’t know, maybe the aliens John Stewart hangs out with celebrate (Life Day?) to want to pick this one up. I guess that makes me a footsoldier in the war on Christmas….?
Creators include Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, Tony Bedard, Renato Arlem, Richard and Tanya Horie, Joey Cavalieri, Dara Naraghi and others, contributing six stories starring Superman, The Spectre, Jonah Hex, Anthro, The Legion and GL John Stewart. Look for the cover featuring Jonah Hex and Spectre parade bloons, the very idea of which is almost as crazy as some of the balloons Chris Sims and Anthony Clark imagined for their fantasy Comics Alliance-sponsored Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Let Me In: Crossroads #1: This is the first issue of a four-part comic book prequel to Let Me In, the American film adaptation of 2008 Swedish film Let The Right One In, which was an adaptation of the 2004 Swedish novel. That’s a lot of level of adaptation right there, which is actually kind of fascinating. Marc Andreyko writes this comic, Patric Reynolds draws it, and you can find two it under two different covers—one a photo cover featuring the movie star Chloe Moretz, and one featuring creepy art by Sean Phillips. You can check out a preview here.
Little Lulu’s Pal Tubby Vol. 2: The Runaway Statue and Other Stories: This may be a light week for new comics releases, but that hardly matters—there’s a new volume of Tubby comics, so what else could anyone possibly need? Dark Horse offers another 225-pages worth of full-color John Stanley Tubby comics for $16. Preview here.
Nosferatu: I think this $10, Viper Comics trade by Chris Wolf and Justin Wayne features the bald, buck-toothed Count Orlok from the silent movie classic, but I can’t tell for sure—
—that lady’s breasts are covering up the title character.
Polly & Her Pals: Complete Sunday Comics 1925-1927: IDW is calling this huge 12-inch-by-16-inch, $75, 175-page hardcover the first in its new “Champagne Edition” series. So buy a copy and start reading it at midnight on New Year’s Eve. Polly was one of the first and best “pretty girl” comic strips, and the work of cartoonist Cliff Sterrett. While it launched in 1912, this book concentrates on the full-color Sunday strips from a decade or so down the line. At that size, it should be a perfect coffee table book—not one that you would put on your coffee table, of course, but one big enough to be used as a coffee table.
Project Superpowers Christmas Special #1: The idea of Dynamite’s Alex Ross-fueled revival of most of the best Golden Age superheroes not owned by Marvel or DC has always been better than the resultant comic books. But this particular outing by writer Brandon Jerwa and artist Patrick Berkenkotter looks promising, and like a good entry-point into the super-universe that’s been recreated over the past few years. Three of the more spectral characters—Fighting Yank, The Ghost and The American Spirit visit the villain The Clown, presumably to teach him the true meaning of Christmas and get him to buy a fat goose to share with his employees. It’s a $6, over-sized special.
Shadowland: After the Fall #1: In this $4 one-shot, writer Antony Jonston and artist Marco Checchetto and Roberto De La Torre provide an epilogue of sorts to the Daredevil/All of Marvel’s “Street-Level” Heroes crossover, Shadowland. Well, maybe it’s as much a prologue to what comes next as an epilogue to what just happened, as the solicitation does promise that, “The future of Marvel’s street heroes begins here!”
What If? Wolverine: Father: On the Leinil Francis Yu cover of this $4, over-sized one-shot, we see that young Daken was able to pop his claws as a newborn baby. That must have been terrible for his mother. And father. And the doctors and nurses who delivered him. And anyone who encountered him until he was, I don’t know, six or seven years old. As the title hints, this Rob Williams-written, Gret Tocchini-drawn story looks at how different Wolvie and Daken’s lives might have been different if Wolverine was there to raise his son. Perhaps he wouldn’t have gotten those dumb tattoos…? As with the other of this round of What If? specials, this issue contains a chapter of Rick Remender and Shawn Moll’s What If Venom Had Possessed Deadpool, Wouldn’t That Have Meant Some Pretty Great Sales? story.
Stan Lee’s Starborn #1: The third of Boom’s suite of Stan Lee-branded and co-created superhero titles features work by writer Chris Roberson and artist Khary Randolph and features as its hero a failed science fiction writer who finds out he may not actually be from planet earth. He may, in fact, have been born elsewhere. Like, out there, among the stars. You know, starborn.
Wildstorm Presents: Planetary—Lost Worlds: At 90-ish pages for $8, this appears to be the Wildstorm equivalent of the new DC Comics Presents almost-a-trade paperback format. Inside you’ll find a couple of Warren Ellis-written Planetary crossovers: 2000’s Planetary/The Authority: Ruling the World, featuring art by Phil Jiminez, and 2002’s Planetary/JLA: Terra Occulta featuring art by Jerry Ordway. I remember liking both when they were originally published as one-shots, although I do recall being rather surprised by the content of the JLA one, which was about Clark Kent, Diana Prince and Bruce Wayne being Planetary rather than, like, Jakita, The Drummer and Elijah Snow teaming up with Martian Manhunter’s running crew to save the universe from Starro or something.