Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!
We’re bringing back something we haven’t done for a while, what the team thinks. Our contributors are choosing up to five books each week, highlighting a top pick, and why they’re choosing the books.
Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday. I think it’s safe to say we’re excited for a story that takes place in a galaxy far, far away.
Top Pick – Star Wars #1 (Marvel) – I’m a Star Wars fan, and have loved reading Dark Horse’s various series. I also have some fond memories of reading Marvel’s take back in the 80s (and still have a few issues laying around in my long boxes). What Marvel does with the license should be interesting, especially in comparing to how Dark Horse handled it all.
Avengers #40 (Marvel) – What Jonathan Hickman has been doing with the various Avengers titles has been exciting and an interesting direction for them. We’re ahead in the Marvel timeline seeing how things have progressed as “Time Runs Out.” All of this is leading to Secret Wars, so… there’s that? If anything, the story has been exciting and entertaining with some kick-ass art.
Copperhead #5 (Image) – I love this series, one of my favorites to debut in 2014. The first arc wraps up in a nice tidy bow and it sets up some interesting plot threads for the future. This is a great sci-fi western and if you’re into that sort of thing, absolutely pick up the trade paperback when it’s out next month.
Michael Jordan: Bull on Parade (Fantagraphics) – Wilfred Santiago’s graphic novel about the sports legend. It touches on his successes and struggles and has an interesting take on how an individual can turn into a product.
Stumptown Vol. 3 #5 (Oni Press) – The conclusion to “The Cast of the King of Clubs” has Dex deciding if she’ll seek justice or revenge. Writer Greg Rucka has been on fire and that’s helped by Justin Greenwood’s art.
Top Pick – Batgirl #38 (DC Comics) – Ever since the new creative team has taken over there has been a positive change in direction for this series which was already decent enough. The series might be a bit lighter in pure superheroics, but it is heavier on themes and character development.
Damsels in Excess #4 (Aspen Comics) – Aspen’s unconventional fairy tale series takes another turn here as the heroines get closer to their final confrontation. This is an interesting take on fairy tales, different from the other titles in a medium which is saturated with them at the moment.
Deep State #3 (BOOM! Studios) – This series which was easy to pick up, also proves to be hard to put down. Even those that don’t like X-Files conspiracies will find some pure comic fun here.
Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Wonderland #31 (Zenescope) – When Calie Liddle won against the powers of Wonderland and took on the role of queen, fans of this series might have wondered if there were still stories to be told. New series writer Erica Heflin proved in the first story arc that she is fit to the task,and the mother vs. daughter clash of the second story arc looks pretty fun.
Suicide Risk #21 (BOOM! Studios) – This series has not stopped since the first issue from presenting its own world full of superheroes but with a weird twist. Now with his wife and alternate universe wife both living under the same roof, how will Requiem react when the fate of the world is in the balance?
Top Pick – Rat Queens Special: Braga #1 (Shadowline/Image) – If you like female centered stories and ever played D&D this deserves a read. And female characters who aren’t attractive humanoids don’t often get to tell their stories.
Lazarus #14 (Image) – everyone here is the best they are at what they do (including Forever herself). I gotta get caught up!
Silver Surfer #8 (Marvel) – It’s starting to get touching! A story about vulnerability. And Allred’s art is glorious as ever.
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #1 (Marvel) – This came out last week, but it’s fun. pure fun. I’ve been a fan of Henderson’s art for a few years now and she has a uniquely feminist eye for the world. Her cartoon-y style should’t be underestimated because her pacing and breakdowns are strong. North was great on Adventure Time so bring on the zaniness.
Top Pick – Jupiter’s Legacy #5 (Image) – Although the spacing between issues is greater than we would like, this book has one of the best stories from Mark Millar. The amazing art by Frank Quitely make it a must for anyone’s Pull List.
Copperhead #5 (Image) – The conclusion to the first arc of this outstanding and imaginative series by Jay Faeber and Scott Godlewski. It’s a crime procedural on a distant planet that feels like a mix between The Fuse and Saga; what else could you ask for?
Lazarus #14 (Image) – Greg Rucka has created a vast and amazing world for Forever, the protector of the Carlyle Family to roam free. With each new arc we learn more and more of this futuristic world consisting of ruling families and the Lazarus that protect each one.
Star Wars #1 (Marvel) – You can never have too much Star Wars material to soak up. This one, by Jason Aaron and artwork by John Cassaday, takes place between IV: A New Hope and V: The Empire Strikes Back. Bridging the story between the two movies should be a lot of fun for any Star Wars fan.
The Walking Dead #136 (Skybound/Image Comics) – One of the best stories out there, Robert Kirkman has reinvented The Walking Dead Universe with brand new dangers and horrors lurking around every corner. After all these years I still love when a new issue comes out and the new arc is going to be just as great as any in the past.
Top Pick – Teen Dog #5 (BOOM! Box/BOOM! Studios)- Teen Dog has faithfully served up all kinds of superb cool in the first four issues, so this latest issue should be more of that. This round, Teen Dog is gonna have to confront his alter ego, who is probably totally not cool at all. Scoff.
Batgirl #38 (DC Comics) – The DC book with the most diversity in characters made headlines last month in a way that really doesn’t behoove what the creative team is going for with this series, but I’m sure it can make a comeback. My roommate thought I was reading a Marvel book when he looked over my shoulder to see the first issue of this new run, and that’s a good thing when it comes to the kind of demographics a book like this is appealing to.
Daredevil #12 (Marvel) – Waid and Samnee are doing something more mainstream superhero books need to be doing, which is telling short, small-scale stories. The solicit for this issue promises a conclusion to the great story started last issue, along with some teases for potential seeds leading to bigger stories; those are good too!
S.H.I.E.L.D. #2 (Marvel) – Giving Mark Waid the reins on a Marvel Universe-spanning crossover book that loosely ties into the Agents of Shield television show is a lovely idea. This issue’s pairing of Waid with Humberto Ramos to do a Ms. Marvel-centric story is all-kinds of awesome, too.
Silver Surfer #8 (Marvel) – This book is always a treat, with Slott’s fun sense of adventure and Allred’s incredible, whimsical art. Promised in this issue is a planet filled with billions of varied species, so the sky’s the limit!
Top Pick – Daredevil #12 (Marvel) – Waid and Samnee’s Daredevil is one of the best comics on the market, even before it was unnecessarily rebooted, and continues to inspire awe with beautiful art that I wish I could plaster my walls with, and an emotionally complex script that is atypical of most mainstream productions. Daredevil’s new conflict with the Stunt-Master continues, Matt lies in his autobiography, and more!
Animal Man Vol. 7: Red Plague TP (DC Comics) – Animal Man of the 1980s and 1990s by Vertigo was fantastic, featuring the much acclaimed run by Grant Morrison (among many others). A new TP collects issues #64-79, Annual 1.
Justice League United #8 (DC Comics) – I’ve kept away from most JL books since the Trinity event, mostly because JL itself is a bit overblown while JLD, despite an awesome cast has suffered from sub-par storytelling. Other JL incarnations in the New 52 aren’t even worth mentioning. JLU, however, is an exciting romp through space, bringing in some of my favorite science fiction heroes with a new, truly compelling First Nations superheroine, Miiyahbin. In this issue, JLU and the Legion of Super-Heroes go toe-to-toe.
The New 52: Future’s End #37 (DC Comics) – Despite my general disgust with the ploy that, if you want to keep up with the DC Universe, you have to buy weeklies (well, you really don’t…), I have actually rather enjoyed Future’s End, or, rather, some of its subplots. I have a feeling that the conclusion of the series will be a great let down, especially since the future shown here will probably not be carried out in other books. Like, I would buy up an Amethyst and Frankenstein team-up comics. Alas…
Star Trek #40 (IDW Publishing) – A well-written exploration of the AU created by Abrams’ films, this issue concludes the “Q Gambit” in which Q has transported Kirk and crew to the future, challenging him to confront the reality that a “no win” scenario really is unwinnable. Plus, Q himself might cease to exist!
Star Wars #1 (Marvel) – The Star Wars franchise returns to Marvel. I can’t say that I’m particularly thrilled about it, but since it can’t be changed I might as well see what Marvel’s about. Objectively, this issue ushers in an unprecedented era in the history of Star Wars, when for the first time the difference between the Expanded Universe and the films are erased and a single continuity is established.
Comixstravaganza Live’s “Big Daddy Cool” Johnny Dellarocca’s
Top Pick – Star Wars #1 (Marvel) – Everyone is head over heels about this release, and the most obvious reason to be is being overlooked by many: for the first time EVER, the comic stories will be canon! Remember earlier this year when Kathleen Kennedy at Lucasfilm said that the EU and all previous comics would be labeled as “Legacy” and everything moving forward would be canon? Well, here ya go! You’re welcome.
Star Wars Legends Marvel Years Omnibus HC (Marvel) – Speaking of “Legends”, this week also see the release of the Omnibus HC, Star Wars: The Marvel Years. This collects all the Marvel comics series starting with the 1977 movie adaptation (which saved the comics industry by the way) and runs through the Empire Strikes Back adaptation. That is one hefty tome, but won’t it look awesome on my bookshelf?
Men of Mystery #95 (AC Comics) – Fans of Dynamite’s Project: Superpowers can read the original tales of seventeen Golden Age heroes! It’s classic pulp superhero adventures at their best! Artists include Joe Kubert, Reed Crandall, and Bob Powell. The market on this one is smallish, so this might be a tough one to find!
Sherlock Holmes vs. Harry Houdini #3 (Dynamite Entertainment) – as a professional magician I am naturally interested in Harry Houdini. However, I have a confession to make. I have an entire library of Houdini books and biographies, and went to far to name my office and studio complex “The Houdini Room!” This series has been interesting because of the real life animosity between Houdini and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. They started as friends but became rivals over the issue of spiritualism. Some have even implicated Doyle in Houdini’s murder (look it up). The time line here is a little skewed, probably to appeal to the Steampunk fandom, but it is a fun read nonetheless.
Wild’s End #5 (BOOM! Studios) – I really can’t believe more people aren’t buzzing about this title. War of the Worlds set in depression era 1930s starring anamorphic animals as the heroes! How could you not love this? Further, this book is the very definition of Dieselpunk! That’s right, I said DIESELpunk. It is the retro futuristic sci-fi and fantasy of the deco/jazz age! If you aren’t familir with Dieselpunk you can learn more by tuning into my Diesel Powered Podcast on iTunes!