Is it just me, or does this seem like a fairly light week for comic books? Or, at least, terribly noteworthy comic books? Please let me know if it’s just me. Otherwise, here’s what jumped out at me this week…
Comic Book Comics #5: The Action Philosophers team of Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey finally roll out the latest issue of their series about the history of comics. This one’s the “All-Lawsuit Issue!” and features some of the greatest battles in comics history, including DC vs. Fawcett, Disney vs. The Air Pirates and Jack Kirby vs. Marvel. Also featuring Miracle Man, Dan DeCarlo, Steve Gerber, Howard the Duck, Josie and the Pussycats, and the Creator’s Bill of Rights. Whew! You can check out a preview here.
The Comics: An Illustrated History of Comic Strip Art: Jerry Robinson’s 1974 classic has been reworked and updated to cover the medium from its orgins to today for this $40, 300-page, nine-by-twelve-inch hardcover from Dark Horse. Preview here.
Girl Comics: Marvel’s 2010 stunt miniseries featuring all-woman creators on every single aspect of the book is finally released in trade format. So if you were waiting for the trade, you can stop waiting now. It’s a $16, 120-page book, and features a who’s who list of contributors, including Ann Noncenti, Jill Thompson, Collen Coover, Lea Hernandez, Carla Speed McNeil, Trina Robbins, Faith Erin Hicks, Stephanie Buscema, Ming Doyle and plenty of others.
Legion of Super Villains #1: Artist Francis Portela joins writer Paul Levitz for a $5, double-sized oneshot featuring Legion of Superheroes bad guys. Portela was the artist for that all-villains, “MODOK’s 11” miniseries Marvel published a few years back. I liked his art on that. I guess he’s building a reputation as The Guy To Hire To Draw Villain Books…?
Ghostbusters: Infestation #1: IDW’s licensed franchises vs. zombies Infestation event reaches the Ghostbusters, in the first of a two-issue miniseries by writer Erik Burnham and artist Kyle Hotz. The cover features a “zombie” version of The Stay Puft Marshmallow Man which…well, kinda boggles my mind. Was STMM a ghost, or a mental image given form by the divine powers of Zhoul? Was he alive? And, if not, can he be undead? The cover of this comic raises so many questions! It’s a $4 comic book.
Isaac The Pirate Vol 1: To Exotic Lands: This release from NBM/Comics Lit collects two installments of French artist Christophe Blain’s ongoing story about a young 18th century French painter who sets sail on a pirate ship for visual reference and inspiration, and finds an unexpected adventure. It’s a $15, 95-page trade and you can find a preview here. Looks good to me.
Night Animals: This book contains two short, wordless stories by Brecht Evens, the Belgian artist responsible for The Wrong Place, an extraordinary release from Drawn and Quarterly last fall. In the first, a man takes a fantastical journey on his way to a blind date, and in the second, a young girl hits puberty and goes through a feverish, Where The Wild Things Are-esque journey. It’s an $8, 48-page book, and you can check out a preview here. I’ll have a review here on Thursday.
Sarah Palin vs. The World One-Shot: Ugh. From the Palin-obsessed publisher Antarctic Press and Palin-obsessed creator Ben Dunn comes another Palinsploitation comic, this one in the form of a Scott Pilgrim parody? Maybe? (The solicitation is pretty vague). Palin’s popularity/relevance was at its height in late 2008, while Scott Pilgrim’s popularity peaked last summer with the release of the final volume of the comic and the release of the movie, so sure, why not do this book in spring of 2011?
Sigil #1: The Crossgen ongoing returns, now as a four-issue miniseres from Marvel. Mike Carey writes, Leonard Kirk draws.
Supersized: Strange Tales From a Fast-Food Culture: Super Size Me director and star Morgan Spurlock attempts to spoil American’s appetites for fast food in a whole new medium. Spurlock co-writes this $13, 90-page anthology trade along with Jeremy Barlow, while artists including Tony Millionaire, Ron Chan, Lukas Ketner and others illustrate. Preview here.
Vertigo Resurrected: Finals: The Vertigo variety of the DC Comics Presents almost-trades program collects Will Pfeifer and Jill Thompson’s 1999 four-issue miniseries about a fictional college with particularly insane final senior projects. I haven’t reread it since it first came out, but I remember really liking it at the time (Plus, when is Jill Thompson art not worth seeking out?) It’s an $8, 100-page book.