Tag Archives: bitch planet

Bitch Planet: Triple Feature Vol. 1 Arrives in December

A dizzyingly talented roster of noncompliant creators, joining forces with series creators Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Landro, will release the first trade paperback collection of Bitch Planet: Triple Feature this December.

Ripped directly from the world of Bitch Planet, a crack team of creators spin 15 teeth-clenching tales of rage, revolution, and ridicule. Patriarchy beware…this sci-fi kidney punch can’t be stopped!

Within the pages of Bitch Planet: Triple Feature Vol. 1, readers can enjoy the writing talents of: Cheryl Lynn Eaton, Andrew Aydin, Conley Lyons, Che Grayson, Danielle Henderson, Jordan Clark, Alissa Sallah, Dylan Meconis, Kit Cox, Marc Deschamps, Sara Woolley, Vita Ayala, Bassey Nyambi, Alobi, Nyambi Nyambi, Jon Tsuei, and Matt Fraction, and delight in the artistic stylings of Dylan Meconis, Sara Woolley, Maria Fröhlich, Joanna Estep, Craig Yeung, Sharon Lee De La Cruz, Ted Brandt, Ro Stein, Naomi Franquiz, Alec Valerius, Vanesa R. Del Rey, Mindy Lee, Rossi Gifford, Chris Visions, Saskia Gutekunst, and Elsa Charretier.

Bitch Planet: Triple Feature Vol. 1 (Diamond code: OCT170620, ISBN: 978-1-5343-0529-8) hits comic book stores Wednesday, December 13th. The final order cutoff deadline for comics retailers is Monday, November 6th.

Around the Tubes

It’s a brand new week and we’ve got some cool things coming up, so stay tuned! While you await what that is, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Around the Tubes

Kansas City Star – Owner of Clint’s Comics reportedly killed after trying to stop thief – Our thoughts go out to his friends and family.

The Recorder – Editorial: Celebrating comic books’ role in promoting literacy – We should celebrate this more.

Quartz – This stunning graphic novel was entirely illustrated using Microsoft Paint – This is really impressive.

ICv2 – New OGN Examines the Syrian Civil War – This sounds very interesting.

The Beat – A Year of Free Comics: Softcore by Box Brown (NSFW) – Free comics!

 

Around the Tubes Reviews

Talking Comics – All-Star Batman #10

Meniscuszine – Bitch Planet Vol. 1

ICv2 – Dark Horse Number Ones TP

Bitch Planet Gets a New Anthology Series Bitch Planet: Triple Feature

Image Comics has announced Bitch Planet: Triple Feature, a new anthology series featuring satirical stories born from the pages of Bitch Planet and brought to you by talent from across the comics industry.

Ripped directly from the world of Bitch Planet, a crack team of creators spin three teeth-clenching tales of rage, revolution, and ridicule—plus essays, a letter column, and more!

Bitch Planet: Triple Feature #1 includes Windows, by Cheryl Lynn Eaton and Maria Fröhlich; Without and Within, by Andrew Aydin and Joanna Estep; and The Invisible Woman, written by Conley Lyons with art by Craig Yeung; all with lettering by Clayton Cowles.

100% Grade-A satire. Accept no substitutes.

Bitch Planet: Triple Feature #1 (Diamond code: APR170731) hits stores Wednesday, June 14. The final order cutoff deadline for comics retailers is Monday, May 22nd.

Graphic Policy Celebrates Women’s History Month: Our Favorite Women in Comics

patsy walker aka hellcat 1 featuredLogan: Kate Leth, Brittney Williams, Megan Wilson, and Rachelle Rosenberg’s Hellcat has been a joyful celebration of superheroes, young people, and queerness. I will miss its humor, chibi style art, and especially my bi bae Ian Soo when it ends in a couple months.

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Alex: Faith (Valiant) I really can’t understate just how enjoyable this series is. There have definitely been some issues stronger than others, but each and every one in the ongoing series (and preceding miniseries) has been nothing short of a pleasure to read.

Jody Houser, Marguerite Sauvage and the revolving cast of artists have taken Faith to stunning heights in an effortlessly charming and warm series that will make you fall in love with comics all over again.

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Shay: Gail Simone brings me LIFE! As does Roxane Gay! And I’m really loving Amanda Conner and her hubby’s direction for Harley Quinn! Also, loving Marguerite Bennett for the realistic portrayal of lesbians in Batwoman!

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Joe: One of the best titles in the last year is Animosity from Aftershock. This fantastic story is written by Marguerite Bennett who has taken the comic book world by storm lately, and drawn by Rafael de Latorre. Basically, society has collapsed when animals can talk and decide to take over the world from humanity. Instead of a boy and his dog adventure like we’ve seen so many times, we get a girl and her dog. Jesse and her hound, Sandor are not only an awesome pair, but the story is about Jesse’s growth into womanhood without a mother figure. Sandor knows he cannot help like her mother could, but he learns to rely on the other female animals to guide her. It’s brilliant, and everyone should be reading it.

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Patrick: Ann Nocenti’s run on Daredevil blew my mind when it was coming out. It was so different from what I’d been used to seeing from Denny O’Neil and Frank Miller – a strange urban poetry that was as close to magic realism as I’d ever seen in mainstream comics. With an off-kilter humor – the Human Torch showing up in a tight t-shirt reading “Bad!” – twisted romance, and psychodrama. Her writing was like nothing else on the stands.

A huge thanks to the editors and publishers behind the scenes who made a ton of great comics happen: Jenette Kahn, cat yronwode, Diana Schutz, Louise Jones/Simonson, Ann Nocenti, Shelly Bond, Alisa Kwitney, and most especially the inestimable Karen Berger.

Troy: It was a bit short lived, but I think there was a Defender’s title by Cullen Bunn about Valkyrie being tasked with assembling Midgard’s Valkyrie. Fear Itself the Fearless was kind of the prelude series to that. I really would have loved to see this series fleshed out.

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Madison: It’s no secret that I’m obsessed with Monstress and Bitch Planet. They’re not for everyone, but they’re two of my go-to recommendations for people who love science fiction or fantasy. Elizabeth Breitweiser, Rachelle Rosenberg, and Jordie Bellaire consistently blow me away with their incredible colors.

Brett: I’m slightly obsessed with M. Goodwin’s Tomboy which is published by Action Lab: Danger Zone. The series follows a teenage girl whose best friend is murdered in a corrupt cop/conspiracy and she gets posessed by an avenging ghost in a way. Think Kick-Ass but a teenage girl in the lead and a manga influence to it all. An amazing mix of horror, action, and manga the hero Addison is a teenager that can kick ass and get some vengeance.

comiXology Unlimited Adds 25 Image Series Complete & Ongoing

comixology-unlimited-imageIn celebration of Image Comics 25th Anniversary, comiXology is adding 25 complete and ongoing Image Comics series to their subscription service, comiXology Unlimited. Beginning today comiXology will add titles every other week through May.

The following critically acclaimed series are being added today:

  • Bitch Planet (Issue #1-8 & Vol. 1 available today, adding issues 6 – 8) created by writer Kelly Sue DeConnick and artist Valentine De Landro
  • God Hates Astronauts (Issues #1-10 & Vol. 1-3 available today, adding issues 6 – 10, Vol. 2-3) complete series by creator Ryan Browne
  • Wytches (Issues #1-6 & Vol. 1 new and available today) complete series created by writer Scott Snyder and artist Jock

ComiXology Unlimited allows you to explore the amazing world of comics, graphic novels and manga for just $5.99 a month. ComiXology Unlimited is available on the comiXology app for Fire Tablet, Android, iOS and on the web at comixology.com.

Fans should check back every other week through May to see what other complete series and substantial arcs of ongoing series from Image Comics are being added to comiXology Unlimited.

Madison’s Favorite Comics of 2016

Last year I prioritized cutting back on cape books and diversifying the publishers and stories that I read. Though many of the comics I read weren’t published in 2016 (especially ones I read during Women’s History Month) I still found it hard to narrow down the list of ongoing series I particularly loved throughout the year.

Here are ten comics I couldn’t put down in 2016:

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10. Goldie Vance by Hope Larson and Brittney Williams

This is a series I would have loved as a child. Goldie is the perfect mix of Nancy Drew and Eloise (of Plaza fame). Goldie Vance is great for a younger audience but doesn’t shy away from emotionally complex stories. Goldie and her friends are well-rounded characters with a wide range of interests who readers–young and not-young alike–will be able to relate to.

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9. Elasticator by Alan C. Medina and Kevin Shah

Elasticator is the kind of smart, political superhero comic I wish was more prevalent. The writing is fresh and interesting and Shah’s art is lively and animated with great colors from Ross A. Campbell.

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8. Snotgirl by Bryan Lee O’Malley and Leslie Hung

Lottie Person is just about as far away from Scott Pilgrim as you could get, though they do, at times, share a similar self-absorption. Snotgirl quickly became one of my favorite series of the year, because while not many people can say they’re successful fashion bloggers, they can likely relate to Lottie’s personal problems. Leslie Hung and Mickey Quinn provide gorgeous, vibrant visuals and the best wardrobe in comics, to boot.

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7. We(l)come Back by Christopher Sebela and Claire Roe

Reincarnation? Check. Assassins? Check. Shadowy organizations? Check. A+ fashion choices? Check. Reincarnated assassins in love running from other assassins who are trying to assassinate them? …Also check. What more can you want from a story?

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6. Shutter by Joe Keatinge and Leila del Duca

Shutter is one of Image’s most underrated titles. The story follows Kate Kristopher, the daughter of legendary explorer Chris Kristopher, and her discovery of some little-known family history. The comic is consistently interesting not only because of its plot, but because del Duca and colorist Owen Gieni are constantly experimenting with narrative structure and using different techniques to influence how the story is read.

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5. Clean Room by Gail Simone and Jon Davis-Hunt

Clean Room is a creepy psychological horror comic about journalist Chloe Pierce’s investigation of self-help master Astrid Mueller, who Pierce suspects is more cult leader than anything else. Or is she? Mueller is a fascinating character, and the unknowable question of which side she’s actually on only adds to the story’s suspense.

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4. The Wicked + The Divine by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie

What if you could be a god, but you’d die within two years? Consistently equal parts entertaining and heartbreaking with consistently incredible art and color from Jamie McKelvie and Matt Wilson. You’ve probably heard of this one.

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3. Mockingbird by Chelsea Cain, Kate Niemczyk, Sean Parsons, and Ibrahim Moustafa

One of the few superhero comics I read this year, Mockingbird was one of my absolute favorites. Cain writes Bobbi Morse as confident and smart, and the result was a fun mystery thriller with gorgeous art. The series also featured some of my favorite colors and covers this year, by Rachelle Rosenberg and Joelle Jones.

By the time I write my 2017 list, I might be over Mockingbird’s cancellation.

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2. Bitch Planet by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Val DeLandro

2016 was light on Bitch Planet–only four issues were released throughout the year–but continued to provide insightful and relevant commentary in what turned out to be a period of rapid change in the real-life political landscape.

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1. Monstress by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda

Monstress started strong in 2015 and only got better. The main character, Maika, is a teenage girl living with a monster inside, something she learns to live with and use to her advantage as the plot develops. Monstress is full of unrepentant female characters set in a stunningly rendered fantasy world.

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

southernbastards15_coverartaWednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

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 and why they’re choosing the books.

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Joe

Top Pick: The Unworthy Thor #1 (Marvel) – Odinson returns, and he’s not worthy! I’ll skip my hopes for a Wayne’s World crossover and instead remind everyone they should be reading The Mighty Thor. While I watch people argue over whether a woman should be Thor or not, I’m reading one hell of a tale being penned by Jason Aaron who is also doing this book. Going all the way back to Original Sin, Thor, and then The Mighty Thor, Aaron has been building us up to this point and it is finally here!

Southern Bastards #15 (Image) – I am so excited for this series returning, and yes this is the second Jason Aaron book on my list. You should get Southern Bastards in trade if you haven’t or get the single issues if you can because I cannot wait to see where this story is going to go. It’s violent, it’s dark, it’s corrupt, it’s infuriating, and I love every minute of it. Boss BBQ not included with this book.

The Wicked + The Divine #23 (Image) – Another one of my favorite series returns. After the enjoyable one shot that showed some of the Pantheon from years past, we finally return to our current group. That last issue was pretty crazy. I’m excited to see how things pan out for our pop star gods. Also it’s Gillen and McKelvie. Nuff said.

Batman #10 (DC Comics) – “I Am Suicide” continues and I’m excited to see what Tom King does with the interesting team that Batman set up last issue. We also get the man who broke the Dark Knight’s back, Bane as he works with Psycho Pirate. Will we get another classic battle between Bats and Bane? I hope so! Either way, I’m always excited for Batman.

Nightwing #8 (DC Comics) – This run of Nightwing has been a pleasant surprise for me since it started. Seeley really needs to be applauded for his work on this book. The last issue sets up something very big, and thank god for the two week releases because we get to quickly see what Raptor is up to. This is one of my favorite Rebirth titles.

 

Alex

Top Pick: Faith #5 (Valiant) – Almost any given week you’ll see a Valiant comic here, and this is no exception. Faith is one of my favourite series being published right now and this issue sees the debut of the fantastic Meghan Hetrick on art, making this probably my most anticipated comic this week.

Batman #10 (DC Comics) – Batman has to infiltrate a prison. Santa Prisca prison, where Bane makes his home. This could be fantastic.

Cryptocracy #5 (Dark Horse) – The super secret government that we never knew about is slowly (and publicly) unraveling. One family’s top agent is trying to stop that, but keeps running up against creatures that were previously just urban legends… this series is far from your traditional superhero type of story, and has really surprised me so far.

Green Lanterns #10 (DC Comics) – This is probably my favourite book that DC are publishing right now, in part because of the chemistry between the two leads, but also because of how easy it is to fall into the story because if, like me, you’re new to the world of the Green Lanterns, then you can figure out what their all about with the universe’s two newest Lanterns.

The Unworthy Thor #1 (Marvel) – I’ve always been a sucker for redemption stories, so a six issue story about (hopefully) that is going to be intriguing. While I hope that Jane Foster remains Thor for a little longer, I’m not surprised to see the Odinson on a quest for a different Mjolnir – I only hope that he doesn’t end up with his old hammer.

 

Brett

Top Pick: The Sheriff of Babylon #12 (Vertigo) – This is it. Everything comes together (hopefully) in Tom King and Mitch Gerad’s series about a murder in Iraq during the American occupation. The series has been a gripping read and possibly one of the most brutally honest takes on the US occupation. Easily one of the best comics on the shelves this week.

Bitch Planet #9 (Image Comics) – After a break, the series is back and it continues to mix entertainment with politics in one of th best comic series out there.

Muhammad Ali (Dark Horse) – A graphic novel biography about one of the great athletes and icons of all time? Yes please!

Occupy Avengers #1 (Marvel) – David Walker takes on this new team which seems rather interesting. But, so many years after the Occupy movement, is it relevant? We’ll see!

Southern Bastards #1 (Image Comics) – One of the best comics returns. This Southern noir look at racism, football, and small town politics, is absolutely amazing. So happy it’s back.

Ms. Monster

bitch planetDuring my undergraduate study, I spent an enlightening semester learning entirely about women writers and how they write women and girls. It’s something I’ve carried with me, especially in reading comics. While it is now less rare for women to occupy a central role in comics, the field is still overwhelmingly male-dominated and male character-centric. This often leaves female characters in a space that is Other, or separate from the norm.

With creator-owned comics on the rise, women are now able to carve spaces in which to tell their own stories. Two stories in particular, Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine DeLandro’s Bitch Planet and Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda’s Monstress, challenge the Othering of femininity by exploiting the connection of femininity to monstrosity and allowing characters to reclaim this aspect of their identities by embracing the monstrous.

It is possible to understand this reclamation of identity by using Julia Kristeva’s theory of abjection as a lens. Kristeva is a Bulgarian-French philosopher, psychoanalyst, and feminist whose work spans multiple disciplines but is prominent in structuralism and poststructuralism.

Powers of Horror: An Essay on Abjection outlines Kristeva’s theory of abjection in a very French and somewhat complex way. The abject, by definition, is a “non-object” that lingers in a person’s psyche as a consequence of repression. The abject disturbs system, identity, and order. To abject something is to other it from the “I,” pushing it away from the self to maintain personal boundaries.

Monstress01_CoverA simple example of this sort of behavior is food loathing. This is a common behavior, especially in children, but the dissonance between something that is supposed to nourish and the unpleasant taste or nauseous feeling causes abjection. If you hated broccoli as a kid or avoid a certain food after eating something and getting sick, this is a basic form of abjection.

Abjection can also exist among people, so when discussing abjection it is important to make a distinction between subject, object, and abject. The subject is “I.” (When you, reader, speak about yourself, your thoughts, you say “I.” You’re subject.) Now table that thought for a moment. The difference between object and abject is contingent on one point. Objects hold weight and meaning. The abject is not an object because it does not hold weight. The only “object” quality the abject possesses is that it opposes the “I.”

One example Kristeva uses to distinguish each definition is that of a corpse. Kristeva says corpses are simultaneously subject, object, and abject–the body was once a person, a subject, but became object after death. Corpses are also abject because they force us to consider the uncomfortable truth of our inevitable deaths.

What both the food loathing and corpse examples have in common is the idea that they are improper or unclean. People and bodies will abject things they deem “incorrect,” but what is unclean, gross, or incorrect doesn’t directly cause abjection; they create a disruption of a person’s system, identity, and order and that causes abjection. Disruption of the boundaries demonstrates their fragility.

Abjection of people is driven by a failure of one member of a group to recognize its kin. This same lack of recognition drives fear of what has been deemed Other. A person possessing some quality that has been deemed “incorrect” on a larger social scale causes a lack of recognition, which is perpetuated on an individual level. This creates a cycle of fear and rejection by engendering disgust for the “not normal” or “not human.” Social constructs are upheld and continue to oppress the abject.

BitchPlanet02_CoverAccording to Kristeva, one natural reaction to abjection is religion, which is an attempt to create order where the abject has disturbed it. Using this reasoning, the formation of governing bodies–including the Cumaea in Monstress and the male-led government in Bitch Planetare an attempt to control the abject.

Kristeva says another natural reaction to the abject is to create art. Using comics to explore the abject allows both readers and creators to approach the subject in worlds both fictional and real. The settings of the comics discussed here (an off-world prison and an alternate version of early 20th century Asia) allow writers and artists to discuss issues present in real life. The main characters of both comics are monstrous women, all of whom are attempting to create their own space in the world. Comics give these creators a space to both examine the abject and criticize the social systems that oppress the abject in a fictional world, as well as in our real one. (Bitch Planet also accomplishes this by including essays in the backmatter of single issues.)

In Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine DeLandro’s Bitch Planet, women who are determined “non-compliant” are shipped to an off-world prison. Non-compliance in women is determined by any number of “crimes,” including being “aesthetically offensive,” obese, or transgender. In Bitch Planet, misogyny is taken to an extreme level. Women who fall outside of a narrow box of acceptable gender behavior and presentation and individuals who don’t conform to traditional binary standards are punished for existing. It’s a harsh critique of the standards women are held to in real life–both behaviorally and aesthetically.

Monstress, by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda, combines a number of fantasy elements that make up an alternate Asia, which plays home to Maika, an Arcanic teen. The Arcanics’ magic makes them highly desired by the Cumaea, a religious order that uses Arcanic Lilium to enhance the powers of its members. Arcanics are regarded as a lowly sub-human class, which allows the story to explore themes of racism and slavery. Since it is told from Maika’s perspective, much of the story also focuses on her strength (inner and outer) as she resists the oppressive force of the Cumaea.

Monstress05_CoverThough they take place in vastly different worlds, Bitch Planet and Monstress feature protagonists who have been Othered in some way. The characters readers are meant to root for and maybe even identify with are seen as non-human because they disrupt established social structures and system, identity, and order.

Inmates of the Auxiliary Compliance Outpost are abject for any number of reasons, from not being feminine enough to “driving” their husbands to infidelity. They are treated inhumanely, used only as an example for other women and bodies in sport. The women find a sense of community with each other, bound by their monstrous qualities.

Maika of Monstress is introduced as a slave, immediately establishing her as abject and Other. This is only furthered when readers learn of her powerful psychic connection to a literal monster that she refers to as her “hunger.” Maika is considered a monster even before she embraces this title.

The pathologization of women’s behavior in Bitch Planet and demonization of Arcanics mean that these characters are considered monsters regardless of whether their behavior reflects that designation. Neither comic is subtle about its connection of femininity to the monstrous, and both take care to show that women’s experiences with society intersect differently based on race and sexuality.

The metaphor of the monstrous is accessible in Bitch Planet, where the particularly relevant issue three focuses on how women are punished for attempting to conform to social standards (taking part in harmful diets and beauty rituals) and for living outside these standards (in which case they are made social outcasts). The metaphor is equally accessible in Monstress, where Maika quite literally lives with a murderous monster called Monstrum inside of her. The Monstrum, though dangerous, helps Maika to defend herself against threats and to withstand constant dehumanization.

These works are important because they bring to light issues that some readers may not experience because of their social or economic privileges. By forcing readers to interact with abject concepts, these stories also force readers to consider perspectives they otherwise wouldn’t because readers themselves wish to escape the uncomfortableness of the topic. These stories also examine institutions which have been founded on oppressive platforms whose original intent was to protect the privileged from the abject.

Despite being considered monstrous, the characters in either comic embrace this aspect of their identity. Inmates in Bitch Planet use their strengths as non-compliant women (both physical and mental) to fight for their freedom. While Maika’s goal is to find answers about her mother’s death, she also uses her monstrousness to protect other Arcanics and fight the Cumaean order. This is a way to claw back at the systems that have rejected and othered them and to reclaim their identities and their rights to live a free and happy life.

Characters pushing back against oppressive systems reflect the real-life struggle for equality between the abject and those who have abjected them. These characters want to be seen as an “object” rather than Other in the sense that this would allow them to be recognized by their peers as non-abject and human.

Though Bitch Planet and Monstress explore vastly different worlds, they both offer a unique approach to examining the abject. And as female characters fight for and claw out their own space in their worlds, their creators do the same in ours.

This paper was originally presented as part of the 2016 Comics and Popular Arts Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.

Around the Tubes

BitchPlanet08_CoverThe weekend is almost here! Who’s doing geeky things this weekend? Sound off in the comments below.

While you wait for the weekend to begin, here’s some geeky news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Around the Tubes

Consequence of Sound – Dwayne Johnson to adapt graphic novel Son of Shaolin into feature length film – Are there comics not being adapted at this point?

Dread Central – Eli Roth and Jim Carrey Adapting Graphic Novel Aleister Arcane – See above.

CBR – Paramount, CBS Release ‘Star Trek’ Fan Film Guidelines – Very interesting.

ICv2 – 451 Media Launching ‘Red Dog’ – Cool.

Newsarama – Star Wars Actress Hired As CW’s New Vixen – Well ok then.

Newsarama – Report: Bokeem Woodbine Joins Spider-Man: Homecoming As Yet Another Villain – Well that cast is growing.

Newsarama – Sony Will Expand Spider-Man Universe With Marvel, Calls Animated Spider-Man A ‘Breakthrough Sensation’ – Alrighty.

The Beat – Barnes & Nobles loses $24 million in fiscal 2016, set to open restaurants – Well that’s not good.

The Outhousers – REPORT: All of San Diego to Have Free, Inadequate Wifi During Comic Con – Ha!

 

Around the Tubes Reviews

Talking Comics – Action Man #1

The Outhousers – Autumnlands #13

The Outhousers – Bitch Planet #8

Comic Attack – Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #4

ICv2 – Power Cubed TPB

Comic Attack – Power Man and Iron Fist #5

Nothing But Comics – Pretty Deadly #10

The Outhousers – She Wolf #1

The Beat – Snotgirl #1

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

DIVINITY2_003_VARIANT_PEPOYWednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

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 and why they’re choosing the books.

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Alex

Top Pick: Divinity II #3 (Valiant) – Quite frankly, this is one of the best miniseries you’ll read all year. And I’m saying that having only read half of it.

Rai #14 (Valiant) – Another tie-in to Valiant’s summer 4001 A.D.event, and this one is sure to she some light on the recent(ish) past of New Japan. It should be fun.

Red Thorn #8 (Vertigo) – A new arc? Oh, twist my rubber arm, why don’t you? I took this off my pull list five issues ago, but yet I just can’t stop buying it…

 

Anthony

Top Pick: Bitch Planet #8 (Image Comics) – Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Landro have been proving, issue by issue, that Bitch Planet is one of the most important titles on the comic stands. It continues to jab and stab at the patriarchy with an exploitative, 1970s aesthetic to De Landro’s art style, heightened by Kelly Fitzpatrick’s nuanced colours. The comic alone is worthy of the price tag so it is a bonus, and a great treat at that, in which every issue includes a back essay analyzing particular issues from a feminist approach. How could you not pick up the next part to the arc entitled ‘President Bitch’?

Autumnlands Tooth and Claw #11 (Image Comics) – The recent issues of Autumnlands has done a solid job at exploring more parts of the world, encountering a wider variety of anthropomorphic groups and the towns/lands they belong to. Kurt Busiek is one of the best in the business at world-building, making those slower-paced issues hit their mark instead of feeling like an unnecessary breather. Benjamin Dewey has been doing a beautiful job at capturing the variety of environments and characters in this fantasy series. Dewey’s visuals naturally pop through another wonderful creator in Jordie Bellaire and her colours. Not only is the world of Autumnlands being further explored, more knowledge is being provided on the mysterious past history as well.

I.D. (GN) (Image Comics) – Originally printed in the Island anthology magazine from Image, I.D. tells the story of three people whom are in the midst of a transformation into another body, maintaining their mental selves upon the transition. Emma Rios poetically questions ideas of identity and how comfortable or uncomfortable we are in the bodies we are born in and thus grow up in. The visual style is unique in that it focuses on a glowing red within the detailed panels. Rios crafts a beautiful, thought provoking tale that points at the dilemmas of gender and identity conformity.

Divinity II #3 (Valiant Entertainment) – Though Valiant has been releasing a steady flow of great, entertaining titles for years now, the Divinity titles easily stand out. Divinity II has picked up right where the last series left us, in terms of quality of storytelling through Matt Kindt’s flowing scripts, Trevor Hairsine’s striking, emotional pencils with Ryan Winn’s inks, and David Baron’s purposeful colour palette. Taking the perspective of Valentina, this title is taking a different direction from the one guided by Abram Adams. Judging by the jaw-dropping last few pages of the last issue, including a little time travel, it will be really interesting to see the journey this creative team has in store for Valentina and her Stalinism values.

 

Javier

Top Pick: Lucas Stand #1 (BOOM! Studios) – Kurt Sutter, that guy behind Shield and Sons of Anarchy, makes his comic book writing debut.

Divinity II #3 (Valiant Entertainment) – This book took me by surprise with the introduction of the Russian cosmonaut Myshka, who battles with Divinity for control of the Valiant Universe.

 

Mr. H

Top Pick: Action Comics #958 (DC Comics) – The twice monthly epic continues! I am really enjoying this story so far. Everything from Luthor trying to be the new Man of Steel, to the return of Doomsday and finally the apparent return of a de-powered, possibly amnesia Clark Kent. Everything seems to be really hitting on all cylinders and I am  just so glad the Real Superman is back.

Detective Comics #935 (DC Comics) – The Bat-Family cometh. In a new way though. I like the boot camp style of sidekick training that Batman and Batwoman are putting the young heroes through. The only odd mud ball out for me is Clayface, which hasn’t sold me yet. Bringing the Wayne and Kane heritage back into the title is gold though. Team Batman could just be it’s best yet.

The Flash #1 (DC Comics) – The introduction of a new villainous speedster : Godspeed. I want a front row seat to this race. Probably standing room only.

Justice League #52 (DC Comics) – Aftermath of the “Darkseid War.” After one of the most incredible tales in League’s history and all the bombshells dropped, where do they go from here? I have to find out.

 

Paul

Top Pick – Ultimates #8 (Marvel) – I’m hoping this book shows us what happened between the Ultimates and Thanos that cost the team dearly, and set Iron Man into motion to choose his side in the Civil War.  Also hoping the tie ins give us more insight, and not just “filler” stories to slog the main story along.

Civil War II: Choosing Sides #1 (Marvel) – This could be interesting.  Sure, we’ll see how the main heroes deal with this new Civil War, but what about the lesser seen players?  Everyone will be affected by this latest skirmish between the heroes, and I’m curious to see the impact on those around them.

Uncanny Avengers #10 (Marvel) – Hank Pym IS Ultron?  Ultron IS Hank Pym?  Curious to see what’s going on with this story.  And excited to see the return of Janet (aka The Wasp).

 

Brett

Top Pick: Lucas Stand #1 (BOOM! Studios) – While Kurt Sutter has had his works turned into comics, the creator of The Shield and Sons of Anarchy makes his comic writing debut in this new series from BOOM!. The concept is a vet who’s recruited by Lucifer to send demons back to hell. I feel like we’ve seen this before, but I’m sure Sutter and co-writer Caitlin Kittredge will make it unique.

Acton Man #1 (IDW Publishing) – The British version of GI Joe is getting a new comic series and for those who read the Free Comic Book Day release, you’ll know why this should be interesting. Action Man is dead, long live Action Man!

Bitch Planet #8 (Image Comics) – It feels like forever since the last issue, but every one of this series has delivered and no matter how long between issues, it’s a warm welcome back.

Princeless: Raven, the Pirate Princess #9 (Action Lab Entertainment) – Speaking of a series that delivers… this is a female centered kick-ass comic that also delivers with every issue. You want diversity and to break from the comic “norm?” Well, here you go.

Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #54 (IDW Publishing) – It’s the Autobots versus the Decepticon Justice Division and I’m expecting a lot of death.

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