COLLECTIVE THOUGHTS FOR MARCH 2014

A very cosmic KC Carlson. Art by Stuart Immonen.

A very cosmic KC Carlson. Art by Stuart Immonen.


by KC Carlson

THIS MONTH IN CLASSIC COMIC BOOK COLLECTIONS

Henry Speaks for Himself

Henry Speaks for Himself


Henry Speaks for Himself (Fantagraphics): Not a collection of the original (and weird) Carl Anderson newspaper strip about a bald boy who never speaks! This is a collection of the vastly different comic book version of Henry — where the stories are longer and Henry talks! Written and drawn by John Liney (who also drew the daily newspaper strip), this comic series was even more kid-friendly than the strip, drawn in a clean Tintin-esque style and featuring very clever writing. These 1940s and 50s stories have never been collected. Is this a long-overdue look at a forgotten “kids’ comic” classic? Introduction by Kim Deitch. 160-page color softcover.

Marvel Masterworks: Captain Marvel Volume 5

Marvel Masterworks: Captain Marvel Volume 5


Marvel Masterworks: Captain Marvel Volume 5 (Marvel Comics): This volume from the original first series of Marvel’s Captain Marvel serves to wrap up a specific era. Jim Starlin hadn’t been working on the regular series for a while, but he’s represented here with the now classic conclusion to his work on the feature from Avengers Annual #7 and Marvel Two-in-One Annual #2 where the Avengers, The Thing, and Spider-Man team to defeat Thanos! Meanwhile, in the regular book, folks like Scott Edelman, Gerry Conway, Roger McKenzie, and Al Milgrom do some interesting things like publicly reveal Captain Marvel’s secret identity and set up something significant that readers wouldn’t discover until the Death of Captain Marvel graphic novel. Plus Mar-Vell and Rick Jones finally get separated! Collects Captain Marvel (1968) #47-57, plus the two Annuals mentioned above. 288-page color archival hardcover. Available in June.

Rocky & Bullwinkle Classics Volume 1: Star Billing

Rocky & Bullwinkle Classics Volume 1: Star Billing


Rocky & Bullwinkle Classics Volume 1: Star Billing (IDW): Released in conjunction with IDW’s new Rocky & Bullwinkle comic book (by Mark Evanier and Roger Langridge!), spotlighting a new Rocky and Bullwinkle animated short which will appear with the March release of the new Mr. Peabody and Sherman animated feature. Star Billing is a collection of classic Rocky and Bullwinkle comic book material originally published in the first four issues of the 1960s Gold Key comic book series, written and drawn by Al Kilgore, with a new cover by Roger Langridge. (Kilgore also drew the syndicated Bullwinkle comic strip that ran between 1962 and 1965.) Also included in the book are stories featuring Mr. Peabody and Sherman, Dudley Do-Right, and Fractured Fairy Tales, all collected for the first time! I read these comics as a kid, and I can’t wait to see them again, as I hope that they are still as funny as I remember them! The various Jay Ward Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon shows of the early sixties were the funniest and most subversive cartoons of that era (although I had no idea at the time)! 122-page color softcover. Recommended for lovers of classic kids’ comics!

Spider-Man Firsts

Spider-Man Firsts


Spider-Man Firsts (Marvel Comics): Now spinning their hugely popular “Firsts” reprint concept from decades to individual characters, Spider-Man Firsts includes dozens of Spider-Man-related first issues, from 1963’s Amazing Spider-Man #1 to 2008’s Amazing Spider-Man Family #1. Click here for a complete listing of titles. Includes work by Stan Lee, Steve Ditko, Roy Thomas, Gerry Conway, Todd McFarlane, Tom DeFalco, Kurt Busiek, Mark Waid, Dan Jurgens, Howard Mackie, J.M. DeMatteis, Mark Millar, Peter David, Dan Slott, Ross Andru, Sal Buscema, John Romita Jr., Terry Dodson, Mike Wieringo, Joe Madureira, and many, many others (although, sadly, not John Romita Sr., who never got to draw a Spidey First Issue [except for layouts for the original B&W magazine Spectacular Spider-Man #1 from 1968, which is not included here]). 528-page color softcover. Available in April.

Star Trek: Gold Key Archives Volume 1

Star Trek: Gold Key Archives Volume 1


Star Trek: Gold Key Archives Volume 1 (IDW): They’ve been reprinted before, but IDW’s new collection of the classic Star Trek Gold Key comic books of the 1960s gets a new, deluxe hardcover treatment here, with a new “throwback” cover (whatever the heck that is) and a new introduction by John Byrne. This reprints the first six issues (with stories by Arnold Drake and George Kashdan!), and Westfield resident Trekker Robert (Bob) Greenberger will be along any day now with more details on this exciting project. 168-page color hardcover.

Tales of the Batman: Carmine Infantino

Tales of the Batman: Carmine Infantino


Tales of the Batman: Carmine Infantino (DC Comics): Collecting the “New Look” Batman stories of the 1960s (now beginning their 50th Anniversary), drawn by the legendary Carmine Infantino, from 21 different issues of Detective Comics (most written by Gardner Fox or John Broome, including early Batgirl stories), as well as Batman stories from The Brave and the Bold #172 (with Firestorm), 183 (The Riddler), 190 (Adam Strange), and 194 (The Flash), plus 2004’s DC Comics Presents: Batman #1 (a modern tribute to the original era, written by Geoff Johns). 520-page color hardcover. Available in May.

ALSO AVAILABLE:

Eerie Archives Volume 16

Eerie Archives Volume 16


Eerie Archives Volume 16 (Dark Horse): Collecting Eerie #75-80, featuring work by Richard Corben, Bruce Jones, Jim Starlin (the debut of the Darklon the Mystic series), and others. Cover by Corben. Introduction by Peter Bagge. 288-page color hardcover. Available in May.

The First Kingdom: Volume 4: Migration

The First Kingdom: Volume 4: Migration


The First Kingdom: Volume 4: Migration (Titan Books): Continuing Jack Katz’s groundbreaking saga of hidden kings, reincarnated queens, and feuding, immortal cyborg gods! Mature readers. 208-page restored B&W hardcover.

Jonah Hex: Shadows West

Jonah Hex: Shadows West


Jonah Hex: Shadows West (DC Comics): Robert (Bob) Greenberger provides an excellent history and review (including the lawsuits) of this collection of Jonah Hex’s Vertigo Comics adventures. 392-page color softcover. Available in April. Mature Readers.

The Savage Sword of Conan Volume 16

The Savage Sword of Conan Volume 16


The Savage Sword of Conan Volume 16 (Dark Horse): Collecting the Conan stories from Marvel’s Savage Sword of Conan #161-170, by Gerry Conway, Chuck Dixon, Andy Kubert, Ernie Chan, Gary Kwapisz, and others. Over 500 pages – value-priced! 528-page B&W softcover.

Young Romance 2: The Early Simon & Kirby Romance Comics

Young Romance 2: The Early Simon & Kirby Romance Comics


Young Romance 2: The Early Simon & Kirby Romance Comics (Fantagraphics): Another collection of little-seen (and fascinating) romance comics by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby from 1947-1949. The first volume was much talked-about. 220-page color hardcover.

THIS MONTH IN CLASSIC COMIC STRIP COLLECTIONS


Alley Oop: The Complete Sundays Volume 1, 1934-1936 (Dark Horse): First in a series of collections that will collect, in chronological order, all of the Sunday pages of this popular newspaper strip by V.T. Hamlin. Initially set in the prehistoric kingdom of Moo, the strip is fantastic, whimsical, and often satirical — and amazingly still running today! This first volume includes all the Sunday strips from 1934-1936 in full color. 128-page oversize (12 x 16) color hardcover. Available in May.

Barnaby Volume 2

Barnaby Volume 2


Barnaby Volume 2 (Fantagraphics): Second in a five-volume series collecting Crockett Johnson’s comic strip masterpiece, this book covers the years 1944-1945. Barnaby and his Fairy Godfather travel to Washington to serve in Congress. (Oh, if it only were so easy!) Plus, invisible leprechauns, treasure hunts, ermine hunters, soap salesmen, and more! Although the topics are very much of the wartime, the characters are universal, the cartooning outstanding, and the misadventures hilarious. Forward by Jules Feiffer and designed by Dan Clowes. 372-page B&W (with 32 pages of color) hardcover.

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: The Complete Murphy Anderson Dailies

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: The Complete Murphy Anderson Dailies


Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: The Complete Murphy Anderson Dailies (Hermes Press): Murphy Anderson is often acclaimed as one of the leading artists of comic books’ Silver Age (Hawkman, Atomic Knights), but he got his start and inspiration drawing the Buck Rogers newspaper strips, starting in 1947-49, and then returning in 1958-59. Anderson’s runs on the strip have long been sought by collectors but never comprehensively collected. Until now. This extra-large volume includes all of Anderson’s work on the strip as well as essays, original artwork, and other extras, including an introduction by Roy Thomas. (A second volume collecting Anderson’s Buck Rogers Sunday strips is also in the works). 320-page oversize (9 x 12) B&W hardcover with dust jacket.

Cork High and Bottle Deep

Cork High and Bottle Deep


Cork High and Bottle Deep (Fantagraphics): Due to the success of last year’s VIP: The Mad World of Virgil Partch, here’s a new collection of Partch’s insanely disturbed drink-themed cartoons from the fifties and sixties, some possibly originally from The New Yorker and other such magazines of the era. 180-page color hardcover.

Definitive Flash Gordon & Jungle Jim Volume 4

Definitive Flash Gordon & Jungle Jim Volume 4


Definitive Flash Gordon & Jungle Jim Volume 4 (IDW/LoAC): The final volume of the acclaimed series collecting Alex Raymond’s spectacular Sunday pages for Flash Gordon and Jungle Jim from 1942-1944 in an oversized format. Included as a bonus is the first storyline by Austin Briggs, who followed Raymond on the strips. A first-rate collection by the Library of American Comics. 160-page oversize (12 x 16) color hardcover.

Modesty Blaise Volume 24: The Young Mistress

Modesty Blaise Volume 24: The Young Mistress


Modesty Blaise Volume 24: The Young Mistress (Titan Books) is being resolicited for March 2014 release. Previous orders have been cancelled. Please reorder if you still want this 104-page hardcover collection of three Modesty Blaise stories.

Superman: The Silver Age Newspaper Dailies Volume 2

Superman: The Silver Age Newspaper Dailies Volume 2


Superman: The Silver Age Newspaper Dailies Volume 2 (IDW/LoAC): More great newspaper strip adaptations of Superman stories first seen in the comic books, by Jerry Siegel, Wayne Boring, and Stan Kaye, as originally written by Bill Finger, Edmond Hamilton, Leo Dorfman, and Siegel himself; and originally drawn by Curt Swan, Al Plastino, Kurt Schaffenberger, as well as Boring. Stories include “The Feud Between Superman and Clark Kent”, “The Day Superman Broke the Law”, “The Reporter of Steel”, “Lois Lane’s Revenge on Superman”, “The Invisible Lois Lane”, and “The Man Who Betrayed Superman’s Identity”, among others. More than 750 daily strips add up to over two years’ worth of stories that most comic book fans have never seen in this format. Introduction by Sid Friedfertig. 288-page oversize (11 x 8.5) B&W hardcover.

BIG BOOKS

Absolute All-Star Batman and Robin

Absolute All-Star Batman and Robin


Absolute All-Star Batman and Robin (DC Comics): Collecting the first nine issues of the (still unfinished) miniseries written by Frank Miller and illustrated by Jim Lee and Scott Williams. Features a new origin for Robin, the Boy Wonder, and guest-stars Superman, Wonder Woman, Black Canary, and Green Lantern. So far, DC has not announced any extras for this volume. Printed on big shiny paper so your eyes will pop out! Be prepared for this, or it will be the last book you ever read! 256-page oversize (8.25 x 12.5) slipcased hardcover (aka the Absolute format). Available in July.

Charles Schulz’s Peanuts: Artist’s Edition

Charles Schulz’s Peanuts: Artist’s Edition


Charles Schulz’s Peanuts: Artist’s Edition (IDW): Many of Charles Schulz’ earliest Peanuts newspaper strips get the “Artist Edition” treatment in April, with the somewhat dubious distinction of being the first Artist Edition not reproduced at actual size. (Schulz’s originals then were HUGE!) Even so, the actual book will be 19” x 10”, so it may need its own room. For the first time outside of museums, you can now see his classic creation as close as possible to the original art created by Schulz himself, as each of the many strips is carefully scanned and reproduced, so you can see paste-ups, notes, and other corrections. None of these Peanuts characters wear capes or hang out in swamps, or fly (real) fighter planes, but this may actually be the most interesting Artist’s Edition yet! 144-page oversize B&W (yet scanned and printed in color) hardcover.

Inhumanity

Inhumanity


Inhumanity (Marvel Comics): Despite what you may have heard about the launch of the Inhuman regular series being delayed, this particular project, collecting the early set-up crossovers and one-shots, is moving forward, currently scheduled for June release. Briefly, Inhumanity is a Marvel “event” involving the Inhumans characters, as their long-secret society is exposed when a Terrigen Bomb explodes on Earth and causes humans to mutate (as seen in the recent Infinity event). This book collects Avengers Assemble #21-23, Inhumanity #1, Inhumanity: Medusa #1, Uncanny X-Men #15, Indestructible Hulk #17-19, New Avengers #13, Iron Man #20.INH, Inhumanity: The Awakening #1-2, Avengers A.I. #7, Mighty Avengers #4-5, Inhuman #1, and Inhumanity: Superior Spider-Man #1. 384-page oversized color hardcover. Available in June.

JSA Omnibus Volume 1

JSA Omnibus Volume 1


JSA Omnibus Volume 1 (DC Comics): Possibly better known now for his work on Green Lantern and Justice League, hardcore DC fans know that the heart of Geoff Johns’ early work for DC was reclaiming the Justice Society of America. He brought the classic Golden Age team into the forefront of the DC Universe by mixing younger, edgier heroes, with the elder statesmen of superheroes — and no one got short-changed. Sporadically published since the end of the Golden Age, Johns and some amazing artists (Stephen Sadowski, Carlos Pacheco, Rags Morales, Javier Saltares, Michael Lark, Peter Snejbjerg, Aaron Lopresti, Howard Chaykin, and Darwyn Cooke) have made sure that the DCU has constantly had active JSA projects since 2000.

Collected here are JSA #1-25 (including the early issues written by James Robinson and David Goyer), JLA/JSA: Virtue and Vice, JSA All-Stars #1-8, JSA Our Worlds at War #1, JLA/JSA Secret Files #1, JSA Secret Files #1, All-Star Comics #1-2, All-American Comics #1, Adventure Comics #1, National Comics #1, Sensation Comics #1, Smash Comics #1, Star Spangled Comics #1, and Thrilling Comics #1. And this is just the beginning of John’s amazing run on the series. 1,224-page oversize color hardcover. Available in May.

Punisher MAX Omnibus

Punisher MAX Omnibus


Punisher MAX Omnibus (Marvel Comics): It’s a Punisher vs. the Kingpin story like you’ve never seen, by writer Jason Aaron and artist Steve Dillon! In this particular interpretation, the mob has set up Frank Castle by creating a fictional “Kingpin of Crime” out of a low-level enforcer named Wilson Fisk. But Fisk likes his new position — enough to kill his bosses to keep it! In order to contain this new Kingpin, the Punisher must contend not only with dirty cops, but also the Kingpin’s henchmen Bullseye and Elektra, in this grisly, uncensored take on the classic conflict. Collecting the entire Punisher Max series (#1-22), plus the Punisher Max X-Mas Special. Cover by Dave Johnson. Explicit Content. 544-page oversize color hardcover. Available in June.

Stray Bullets: The Uber Alles Edition

Stray Bullets: The Uber Alles Edition


Stray Bullets: The Uber Alles Edition (Image): A Direct Market Only collection of all 41 issues to date of the gritty crime series by David Lapham, which is relaunching with the long-awaited conclusion Stray Bullets #41 and the new Stray Bullets: Killers #1 — all on sale in March. The Uber Alles Edition collects all the Stray Bullets stories to date (except the new #1) in one ginormous, one-time-printing-only volume. Mature Readers. 1,200-page B&W softcover.

NOW IN SOFTCOVER

Books of Magic

Books of Magic


Books of Magic (DC Comics): New edition of the classic 1990 series that introduced Timothy Hunter and redefined magic in the (then) DC and Vertigo universes. By Neil Gaiman, John Bolton, Charles Vess, Paul Johnson, and Scott Hampton. Cover by Bolton. 208-page color softcover. Mature Readers. Available in April.

Magnus, Robot Fighter Volume 3

Magnus, Robot Fighter Volume 3


Magnus, Robot Fighter Volume 3 (Dark Horse): Collects the original 1960s era stories by Russ Manning, Mike Royer, and others from Magnus, Robot Fighter # 15-21. Foreword by Keith Giffen. 184-page color softcover. Available in May.

Marvel Masterworks: Rawhide Kid Volume 1

Marvel Masterworks: Rawhide Kid Volume 1


Marvel Masterworks: Rawhide Kid Volume 1 (Marvel Comics): Collecting the earliest adventures of Marvel’s most popular western character from the 1950s, mostly by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. This series featuring the standard origin of the era (relative/friend shot and killed and the hero steps up to avenge them), but Rawhide Kid had an undefinable extra spark to it. Maybe because some of Lee & Kirby’s crazy monsters (like the Terrible Totem) shambled into these westerns occasionally? Dunno… Pretty weird stuff, though… (Spits out tobacco, and moseys on…) Additional art by Don Heck, Paul Reinman, Dick Ayers, and Ross Andru. Collects Rawhide Kid (1955) #17-25. (Sorry, no time or space to explain Marvel’s crazy ‘50s numbering. Trust me, these are the earliest stories.) 248-page color (and well-restored) page softcover.

Spider-Man Newspaper Strips Volume 1

Spider-Man Newspaper Strips Volume 1


Spider-Man Newspaper Strips Volume 1 (Marvel Comics): This republishes Marvel’s earlier hardcover volume collecting the earliest newspaper comic strips from January 3, 1977, to January 28, 1979, by Stan Lee and John Romita, Sr. Sundays in color, daily strips in B&W. 344-page softcover. Available in April.

________________________________

KC CARLSON SEZ: This column was running a little long this week, so I held over the Books About Comics (and Movies) section, plus two of my favorite projects of the month. What are they? You’ll find out next Wednesday, here at the Westfield Blog!

WESTFIELD COMICS is not responsible for the stupid things that KC says. Especially that thing that really irritated you.

USER COMMENTS

We'd love to hear from you, feel free to add to the discussion!