Bestselling writer Kieron Gillen, writer Jim Rossignol, artist Jeff Stokely, and colorist Tamra Bonvillain’s The Ludocrats #2 is being fast-tracked to a second printing in order to keep up with increasing demand.
What is it? The series has been previously described as:
In short: The Ludocrats! The aristocrats of ludicrous! A festival of absurdist fantasy and British humor perfect for fans of Good Omens and Monty Python. Baron Otto Von Subertan and Professor Hades Zero-K are here, and they’re going to save us all have a nice time” and that still sounds about right. Except this time it’s “In short: The Ludocrats! The aristocrats of ludicrous! A festival of absurdist fantasy and British humor perfect for fans of Good Omens and Monty Python. Baron Otto Von Subertan and Professor Hades Zero-K are here, and they’re going to save us all have a nice time… with a new cover for this printing by the multiple-Eisner award nominated powerhouses of Ro Stein and Ted Brandt. Fear their majesty! Love it!
The Ludocrats #2, second printing (Diamond Code APR208635) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, July 22.
Breakout hit That Texas Blood by critically acclaimed Criminal colorist and first-time solo artist Jacob Phillips and writer Chris Condon is being rushed back to print in order to keep up with overwhelming demand. The new neo-noir crime series is perhaps best described as Southern Bastards and True Grit meets Breaking Bad and puts a contemporary spin on the Western genre.
That Texas Blood kicks off when the search for a casserole dish leads to a dark and tense confrontation on Sheriff Joe Bob Coates’ 70th birthday.
Coates has always lived in Fort Lehane. He’s always been in Ambrose County. It’s always been in his blood. It’s a Texas thing. But the crimes don’t stop. And they don’t get easier.
For some reason… they keep getting worse. And worse. And… Well. It’s Texas. And Joe Bob is tough. Maybe he’s tough enough to fight it. To last. It’s in his blood, after all. That Texas Blood.
That Texas Blood #1, second printing (Diamond Code APR208642) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, July 22. That Texas Blood #2 Cover A by Phillips (Diamond Code APR200289) and That Texas Blood #2 Cover B by Duncan Fegredo (Diamond Code MAR200030) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, July 29.
The highly anticipated new series launch from Matt Fraction, Terry and Rachel Dodson—Adventureman—is being rushed back to print from Image Comics in order to keep up with growing reader and retailer demand. The new adventure series stole readers’ hearts with out-of-this-world fantasy escapism, low flying steampunk dirigibles, and a pulse-pounding premise perfect for any age.
Adventureman #1 begins when a mysterious customer enters Claire’s bookstore and leaves behind a mint condition Adventureman edition in a hurry, strange things begin happening. Did Adventureman’s story truly end eighty years ago? Or is there more to the pulp superhero’s tale yet to be unveiled?
Adventureman #1, second printing (Diamond Code APR208592) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, July 22. Adventureman #2 (Diamond Code MAR200214) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, July 8.
A retiring sheriff, a small Texas town, one last case. It’s something out of a dime Western, or if you want to get more literary, a Cormac McCarthy novel. However, these are affectionate comparisons as That Texas Blood #1 is an engaging writing and line art debut for Chris Condon and Jacob Phillips, who previously colored Sean Phillips’ recent work on Criminal. The comic provides a window into 70 year old Sheriff Joe Bob’s world of Ambrose County and the relationships that he has cultivated over the decades while raising the stakes and hooking you for the next installment.
Joe Bob is an incredibly likable protagonist. He’s sweet, has a dry sense of humor, and might be a little afraid of retirement. (And by extension, death.) He reminds me a lot of my late grandfather, who was a sheriff in rural Virginia, mischaracterized as being a Texan in a true crime documentary, and even transported dangerous criminals to California. (The evidence was the throwback California Angels hat he gave me.) The unique character traits that Condon and Phillips give him like talking to his wife on the police radio instead of a cellphone, living off service station beef jerky make him three dimensional not a B-movie archetype. And the cherry on top is how open Phillips draws Joe Bob with the exception of the demented dream sequence, which is all reds and blacks. It’s safe to say that That TexasBlood is a well-colored comic.
With the exception of an extended and slightly fucked up anecdote that adds a darker shade to Joe Bob’s character, Chris Condon doesn’t make the “first published comic book script” mistake and finds a balance with Jacob Phillips’ visuals. His dialogue is natural and captures the mood of each scene from the easy banter of Joe Bob and the gas station clerk to the off-panel domestic conflict between Ruth and Ray with the walls of their house hiding Ray’s abuse, but the beer cans outside revealing his alcoholism. Even though That Texas Blood gets exciting and lives up to its title towards the end, Condon and Phillips are more concerned with creating an atmosphere. This is a slow-paced world where a sheriff can clog up the police walkie talkie with birthday party planning and seamlessly incorporate. However, like that Yankee singer Springsteen one said, “There’s a darkness on the edge of town”, and Phillips handles it masterfully with slightly out of frame shots of newspapers in the opening sequence of the comic before exploding in the flashback and at the end of the comic.
Speaking of the opening scene of That Texas Blood #1, Chris Condon and Jacob Phillips are remarkably economic and using seven panels to set up both their protagonist, Joe Bob, and the setting of Ambrose County. It’s a quiet place with muted colors although the orange sky is a few shades away from blood and could be connected to the “nightmare” that Condon mentions in the narration. The book walks a tight rope between domestic tranquility and unrestrained violence with the plot edging a little bit more towards the tranquility in the early going. They create an emotional connection between the reader and Joe Bob, his town, and good sense of morals. (So far.) However, that could all be coming down.
That Texas Blood #1 is a fantastic debut crime comic from Chris Condon and Jacob Phillips. Phillips’ art and colors are stylish and add extra feeling and tension to Condon’s script. Together, they craft a world and protagonist that I want to know more about, and that’s what you want out of a first issue. And as a cherry on top, they turn the casserole dish, which is ubiquitous in Southern culture, into an amazing MacGuffin.
Story: Chris Condon Art: Jacob Phillips Story: 8.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy
Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
The new definition for something that is badass, funny, bonkers, cosmic, and just downright bizarre all at the same time is Outer Darkeness/Chew. Use it in a sentence! For example, “that new David Lynch movie is completely Outer Darkness/Chew!” Okay, there’re a few grammatical kinks to work out, but it still does the job of describing what is surely the wildest ride in comics today. The only thing it did wrong was end.
The third and last chapter of the very short crossover series embraces all of the culinary and sci-fi horror beats it had established in the previous entries to cap it all off as neatly as possible. The crew of the Charon (the spaceship housing the characters from the Outer Darkness comic) found a way to create living holograms out of the two main characters from the Chew universe, Tony Chu and Jack Colby, in order to communicate with an alien race that only speaks through food. Chu’s abilities allow him to do the same and he is successful, but then he learns he isn’t real and that he originally comes from a comic book universe.
And that’s just the premise.
This book works as a fascinating look at how the creative mind works and how well-suited comics are for letting imagination run free, crash into a tree, and then produce an unforgettable story. John Layman, Afu Chan, and Rob Guillory are all conscious of the ridiculous amounts of crazy they can bring to the comics page while never compromising the story. It’s impressive to see the rules of the two stories in this crossover—which are already self-indulgent and gleefully over the top—get broken and remade into fresh and unpredictable story threads.
Fans of Chew have a lot of Easter eggs and callbacks to look forward too, especially every time Poyo is involved. There’s an interesting twist with the mechanisms that allow the holograms to exist that brings the crossover full circle and gets the comic to speak in the voices of the two original comics simultaneously. If one felt that the first two issues might lean too heavily on Chew or vice versa, this third and last issue is where the creators get the balance between the two just right.
Afu Chan’s art captures the spirit of the Chew characters despite being drawn in the style of Outer Darkness. I did wish Rob Guillory would’ve have illustrated the Chew characters throughout the story as his cartoony designs are quite striking and so imbedded into the identity of that book. But this is a minor gripe and I know it is asking for a lot. Still, I wouldn’t have minded more Guillory pages in the crossover.
In the letter’s department, Pat Brosseau manages to infuse the text with the same energy exploding out of the panels. Demons and other creatures possess different text fonts to capture the sound or feel behind the words they impart. It adds another layer to the storytelling and it makes each page feel even more alive.
In a perfect comic book world, this crossover would be its own on-going series. The setting, the exchanges between characters, and the cast as a whole is more than enough to sustain a long-running series for years to come. Alas, it came down to three issues. Thankfully, this brief trek into crossover territory turned out to be the most fun I’ve had with a comic in a while. It makes me want to read more unusual crossover stories (perhaps one with another John Layman or Rob Guillory title? Say Leviathan or Farmhand?). Regardless, what this story brought was well worth the read and is sure to become a favorite for many, many readers.
Script: John Layman Art:Afu Chan and Rob Guillory Story: 9.0Art: 10Overall: Buy and then write the creators demanding more of it!
Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
New York Times bestselling writer, showrunner, and terrific disco dancer Rick Remender launches an all-new comedy espionage series The Scumbagfrom Image Comics, set to hit shelves this October. This new ongoing series will feature a murderers’ row of all-star artistic talent rotating each issue. The first issue showcases the stunning work of Lewis LaRosa with subsequent chapters and covers by brilliant talents such as Andrew Robinson, Eric Powell, Tula Lotay, Wes Craig, Roland Boschi, Simone Di Meo, Duncan Fegredo, Yanick Paquette, Mike McKone, Dave Johnson, and Moreno Dinisio.
The Scumbag is the story of Ernie Ray Clementine, a profane, illiterate, drug addicted, biker, with a fifth-grade education and the only thing standing between us and total Armageddon because this dummy accidentally received a power-imbuing serum making him the world’s most powerful super spy.
Ernie is a relic of a bygone era, the living embodiment of sex, drugs, and rock and roll—so, this doesn’t make things easy for the spy organization that needs his help as they bribe, cajole, and manipulate Ernie to choose between his own self-interests and doing what’s right.
The Scumbag #1 will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, October 21st.
Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) 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!
Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!
Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this week.
20th Century Boys Vol. 8 Perfect Edition (VIZ Media) – If you’ve missed this series as single volumes, here’s your chance to get these collected editions of what’s considered some of the best manga ever.
Ash & Thorn #1 (AHOY Comics) – The savior/champion of the world is not who you think.
Banned Book Club (Iron Circus) – A graphic novel exploring the history of South Korea’s Fifth Republic, a military regime that entrenched its power through censorship, torture, and murder.
Batman #93 (DC Comics) – The end to the “Grand Design” storyline and takes us into the “Joker War.” Many aspects of the story are predictable but it’s still a hell of a final chapter.
Bleed Them Dry #1 (Vault Comics) – The year is 3333. Earth is in a state of recovery. Vampires are real, and though far less populous, they thrive alongside humans in the Japanese-engineered mega-city known as Asylum.
Dragonfly and Dragonflyman Vol. 1 (AHOY Comics) – If you like a take on superheroes over different eras, this is a series to definitely check out. Both an homage and study on superheroes over the years.
Empyre: Avengers #0 (Marvel) – Marvel’s next big event kicks off here.
Once & Future #8 (BOOM! Studios) – A new take on Arthurian legends. It’s well worth checking out!
Plunge #4 (DC Comics/Hill House Comics/DC Black Label) – Fantastic horror with this issue finally making it clearer as to what’s going on but still leaving a lot of mystery.
That Texas Blood #1 (Image Comics) – A new ongoing series that’s described as a “neo-Western crime” story. WE’re intrigued.
The New York Times bestselling, Eisner Award-winning writer Chip Zdarsky and Eisner, Harvey, and Shuster Award-winning artist Ramón K Pérez dive into a world of horror and intrigue in an all-new, ongoing series from Image Comics and Skybound Entertainment this September — Stillwater.
In the town of Stillwater, nobody dies. That’s not just a promise. It’s a threat. The series explores immortality on a small stage, living forever in a constrained space.
Stillwater #1 (Diamond Code JUL200017) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, September 16.
Bestselling writer James Tynion IV and breakout artist Martin Simmonds team up to debut their first Image Comics ongoing series this September 2020, The Department of Truth.
The plot-twisty new conspiracy thriller will blend the suspense of beloved series like The X-Files and the dark atmospheric storytelling of Jonathan Hickman and Tomm Coker’s The Black Monday Murders.
The Department of Truth follows Cole Turner, a man who has studied conspiracy theories all his life, but he isn’t prepared for what happens when he discovers that all of them are true. From the JFK Assassination, to Flat Earth Theory, to Reptilian Shapeshifters—one organization has been covering them up for generations. What is the deep, dark secret behind the Department of Truth?
The Department of Truth #1 will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, September 30.
The New York Times bestselling, award-winning creative team behind The Walking Dead — Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard — returns to the beloved series for a surprise one-shot story, Negan Lives #1, which will arrive in stores this July.
This shipment arriving in July will be without financial burden to receiving retailers—with no freight cost for them to worry about.
In the announcement, Kirkman said:
I’ve been inspired by Steve Geppi and Diamond’s efforts to shine a light on how essential the Direct Market is to our beloved industry with their #backthecomeback campaign. While Charlie Adlard and I had laid the series to rest, this felt like something special we could do for the store owners who made our series a success to begin with. To that end, I’m happy to report that 100% of the revenue generated from this book will go to the stores selling it. The retailer community does backbreaking work to get comics into the hands of our loving fans, we should all be doing more in these trying times to show them how appreciated they are.
Negan Lives #1 will not be available digitally and will be available exclusively at comic book shops. Fans interested in ordering a copy can find the comics store closest to them on Local Comic Shop locator. Many comic book shops are fulfilling orders online and via curbside pickup.
Spurned by a slowly rebuilding society, Negan lives a life of desperate isolation… or does he? In the tradition of Here’s Negan, this all-new story in Negan Lives #1 gives readers a glimpse into what has happened to one The Walking Dead‘s most popular characters in the time since his last appearance in The Walking Dead #174.
As long-time readers of the post-apocalyptic survival series will recall, The Walking Dead #174 proved to be a pivotal point for Negan, as he was tracked down and confronted by a vengeful Maggie, still heartbroken and furious over the murder of her husband, Glenn, in The Walking Dead #100.
Negan Lives #1 (Diamond Code MAR208199) is a 36-page, black and white comic book, available exclusively at comic book shops on Wednesday, July 1. There are extremely rare Gold (Diamond Code MAR208201) and Silver (Diamond Code MAR208200) foil variants of Negan Lives #1 in limited quantities, inquire with your local comic shop for availability and further details.