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DC is Forever Evil as 2019 is the Year of the Villain

DC Comics is taking advantage of Free Comic Book Day by releasing DC’s Year of the Villain on Wednesday, May 1 for only 25 cents. DC’S Year of the Villain spotlights several of DC’s most infamous super-villains, in stories written by celebrated authors Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, and Brian Michael Bendis

The 32-page comic will feature art from Eisner Award-winning illustrator Alex Maleev, Jim Cheung, and Francis Manapul, with an original cover by acclaimed artist Greg Capullo. Hardcore fans will also want to contact their local comics retailer right away to check availability of any one of three beautiful variant covers by Maleev (Lex Luthor) and Cheung (the Batman Who Laughs), as well as popular cover artist Stanley “Artgerm” Lau (the Cheetah). 

Following the events of Snyder and Tynion’s Justice League, Lex Luthor takes a major step forward,  assembling his Legion of Doom for the final push to replace Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and the rest of the League as the rightful leaders of not only mankind, but the universe itself, hoping to harness the power of Perpetua, the first being to be imprisoned within the Source Wall, now newly freed in the events of Justice League Annual #1. Perpetua’s storyline and Luthor’s plans to rid the universe of heroes will continue to escalate throughout the rest of 2019. 

Snyder continues this plague of villainy through his fan-favorite character the Batman Who Laughs. Fans should pay close attention to the current six-issue miniseries, as the events of the final issue will continue to play out in this pre-FCBD issue, leading into a master plan revealed in a to-be-announced new series debuting this summer. 

Fans of Superman and Action Comics will also have plenty to look forward to in this issue, particularly those following the “Leviathan Rising” story arc beginning with issue #1007. Bendis and Maleev will kick off a new status quo in DC’s dark world of espionage and terrorism; the repercussions of this new order will have major ramifications for the Man of Steel this Summer. 

And in case you thought the Dark Knight would be getting off easy, guess again: DC’S Year of the Villain will also contain clues to Batman’s upcoming battle with the villains of Gotham in “City of Bane,” also slated to begin this summer.

DC’S Year of the Villain
DC’S Year of the Villain Artgerm Cheetah Variant
DC’S Year of the Villain Maleev Variant
DC’S Year of the Villain Cheung Batman Who Laughs Variant

Preview: Justice League #17

Justice League #17

(W) Scott Snyder (A) Mark Morales (A/CA) Jim Cheung
RATED T+
In Shops: Feb 06, 2019
SRP: $3.99

After the disastrous events of the Justice League Annual, Martian Manhunter decides to take matters into his own hands and negotiate a peace with Legion of Doom leader Lex Luthor. Traveling to a distant moon, the two enemies face their intertwined pasts in a showdown for the fate of the Multiverse. However, before either of them can lay claim to the power of the Source Wall once and for all, an unexpected threat forces them to unite…or risk death at the ends of the cosmos.

Justice League #17

Preview: Justice League #16

Justice League #16

(W) James Tynion IV, Scott Snyder (A) Stephen Segovia, Mark Morales (A/CA) Jim Cheung
In Shops: Jan 23, 2019
SRP: $3.99

It’s a mystery in space: Why would the Guardians of the Universe hide top-secret intel deep in the bowels of a secret vault on Thanagar Prime? That’s what Martian Manhunter, GL and Hawkgirl want to know! That’s not the only puzzler popping off either, as an ancient connection that bonds Kendra and Shayera Hol unlocks the secret of the map on Hawkgirl’s Dark Metal wings. Back on Earth, Starman and the Trinity look to create a wormhole that could transport them to Thanagar Prime. The only catch? It could vaporize them!

Justice League #16

Preview: Justice League #15

Justice League #15

(W) James Tynion IV, Scott Snyder (A) Mark Morales, Stephen Segovia (A/CA) Jim Cheung
In Shops: Jan 09, 2019
SRP: $3.99

Hawk fight! Martian Manhunter, Green Lantern and Hawkgirl clash with Shayera Hol (also a Hawkgirl) when the League trio tries to break into a secret vault deep within Thanagar Prime-and the feathers are gonna fly! Speaking of secrets, M.M. learns one about himself and Lex Luthor, as related to him by the Martian Keep, guardian of all Martian wisdom and history. Meanwhile, back at the Hall of Justice, Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman must stop Starman from going nova.

Justice League #15

Preview: Justice League #14

Justice League #14

(W) James Tynion IV, Scott Snyder (A) Stephen Segovia, Mark Morales (A/CA) Jim Cheung
In Shops: Dec 19, 2018
SRP: $3.99

Let’s take a trip to “Hawkworld” in part one of a new Totality-related storyline! Martian Manhunter, John Stewart and Hawkgirl avoided “Drowned Earth” with a detour to Thanagar-Prime: J’onn looks to tap into the ancient Martian mental database, GL struggles while practicing his new UV powers, and Kendra searches for answers about her connection to the Totality.

Justice League #14

Preview: Justice League #7

Justice League #7

(W) Scott Snyder (A/CA) Mark Morales, Jim Cheung
In Shops: Sep 05, 2018
SRP: $3.99

It’s wall-to-Source-Wall Justice League action as artist Jim Cheung rejoins writer Scott Snyder! Hawkgirl takes wing against Legion of Doom leader Lex Luthor; John Stewart faces off with old foe Sinestro; the Flash must run down the Still Force-empowered Gorilla Grodd; and Wonder Woman tackles the tag team of Black Manta and Cheetah-underwater, no less!

Review: Justice League #1

Dark Nights Metal and Justice League: No Justice were just the first steps in Scott Snyder’s quest to tell a DC multiverse spanning story starring some of its most underrated characters, and in Justice League #1, some of its heaviest hitters. And in his love of bonkers concepts at the expense of clear storytelling, he’s becoming a lot like Grant Morrison, for better or worse. However, he and artists Jim Cheung, Mark Morales, and Tomeu Morey find a way to a bring back the Timmverse era Justice League lineup as well as assemble the Legion of Doom for the first time in comics and successfully please two generations of JL fans. But can nostalgia overcome a loud, sometimes disjointed plot that spends most of its time talking about a big threat? Justice League falls somewhere in the middle of maybe it can, maybe it can’t.

After a cameo filled opening page, Snyder and Cheung jump right into some double page spreads, wide screen heroics as each Justice League “member” leads a small task force to fight different types of “Neoanderthals” as Vandal Savage tries to take over the universe again. Cheung’s figures are dynamic and powerful with the help of superstar inker Morales, but his fights are cluttered and not blocked well. In fact, scenes where characters are talking around a table or are drawn in heroic poses by themselves (i.e. John Stewart packing construct heat.) have more of an impact than the group fight scenes, which is a definite weakness for an artist on a book where readers expect a big pitched, superhero fight every issue or so.

However, Snyder saves these underwhelming sequences that kick off Justice League #1 with a sense of humor and nigh perfect use of Martian Manhunter as team leader, POV character, and comedic straight man riding off his excellent work with the character in No Justice. The Justice League spends the opening battle basically roasting Batman while J’onn dryly riffs off their dialogue and keeps them on task while remaining aware of the big picture because his home planet Mars was destroyed because his people decided to shut off their literal connection with each other. Even if he’s been away for a while and has a bit of a chip on his shoulder, the Martian Manhunter has the temperament and power set to unite the world’s greatest heroes to stop some quite otherworldly threats. He’s also not afraid to get his hands dirty and take some small setbacks if it keeps his adopted home world safe and contributes to a greater plan. Also, Jim Cheung does a great job showing J’onn’s steady, yet sad demeanor and even gets to cut loose a little bit and show him shapeshift into a dragon.

Through the aforementioned cold open and a pretty nifty sequence where they meet a table like the one in the old Silver Age Justice League of America comics, Scott Snyder and Jim Cheung do a decent job establishing the the heroes of Justice League #1. They drop the ball with the villains and the introduction of the Legion of Doom, especially Lex Luthor, who has gone from a complex figure in Dan Jurgens’ Action Comics run and even No Justice to a mustache twirling, “for the evulz” baddie. When he makes his first play for the Legion, Snyder and Cheung throw any kind of interesting characterization out the window other than making Lex do cool and “badass” things like dropping a bunch of Neanderthals through a trap door, for example. These things do have consequences, and hopefully, Snyder gets a handle on these villains’ voices and motivations so they don’t play second fiddle to symbols and MacGuffins. Obviously, he has the Joker down.

Scott Snyder and Jim Cheung are talented creators, and they have their pick of the litter cast-wise: both heroes and villains. Justice League #1 works when the multiverse shattering stakes have a personal dimension too aka every time Martian Manhunter is involved, but mostly, it seems like it might collapse under the weight of these stakes and its forgettable action scenes.

Story: Scott Snyder Pencils: Jim Cheung
Inks: Mark Morales Colors: Tomeu Morey Letters: Tom Napolitano
Story: 6.0 Art: 7.0 Overall: 6.5 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Justice League #1

Justice League #1

(W) Scott Snyder (A) Mark Morales (A/CA) Jim Cheung
In Shops: Jun 06, 2018
SRP: $3.99

“THE TOTALITY” part one! A brand-new era begins here! Comics legends Scott Snyder and Jim Cheung launch the Justice League into a cosmos-shaking mystery that will draw out their most terrible foes…in ways our heroes couldn’t possibly imagine! In this debut issue, Martian Manhunter struggles to protect the team from an incoming threat that will shatter the world as they know it, while a familiar face strikes out on a dark path…

The Amazing Spider-Man #800 Gets a Variant Cover from John Romita, Sr. and Richard Isanove

It’s all been building to this – the biggest Peter Parker and Norman Osborn story of all time, and the first Marvel comic EVER to hit 800 issues! In celebration of the 800th issue of The Amazing Spider-Man and the now historic run of Dan Slott, Marvel is excited to show a variant cover from industry great John Romita Sr. and Richard Isanove!

Witness the culmination of the Red Goblin story as Slott is joined for his final issue by epic artists such as Stuart Immonen, Humberto Ramos, Giuseppe Camuncoli, and Jim Cheung, and a cover by Alex Ross.

The Amazing Spider-Man #800 comes to shelves May 30th.

Review: New Mutants: Demon Bear

It’s Wednesday which means it’s new comic book day with new releases hitting shelves, both physical and digital, all across the world. This week we’ve got a classic New Mutants story!

New Mutants: Demon Bear features New Mutants (1983) #18-20, X-Force (1991) #99, and material from X-Force (2008) #7-10 by Chris Claremont, John Francis Moore, Craig Kyle, Chris Yost, Bill Sienkiewicz, Jim Cheung, and Mike Choi.

Get your copy in comic shops today and in book stores April 10. To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon/Kindle/comiXology or TFW

 

 

Marvel​ provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review
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