COLLECTIVE THOUGHTS FOR JULY 2015

KC Carlson

KC Carlson


by KC Carlson

Today’s Snark Level: RED (or Read) (Get it? It’s a pun.) (Oh, never mind.)

SKOTTIE YOUNG RULES THE COVER WORLD

I don’t normally talk much about Marvel posters, because, well, single images don’t lend themselves to long descriptions about plot, characterization, or which creator necessitated a fill-in issue this month. But I’m making an exception to point out that for the first time ever (I think) there are eight posters offered (rather than the usual four) and ALL eight of them are by the same artist! That’s the amazing Skottie Young — mastermind of many of the best Marvel covers of the past few years, as well as storytelling work in the L. Frank Baum Land of Oz comic series, Rocket Raccoon, and the soon to be published Secret Wars tie-in Giant-Size Little Marvel: AvX, which is loosely based on his hysterical series of Little Marvel variant covers over the past couple of years. To date, Skottie’s done over 100 Little Marvels covers! (Man, that’s gonna be an awesome art book some day!)

Now, eight of them are Marvel posters, some of them not even published on comics yet! And they’re all crying out to be on the walls of Marvel fans young and old. They’re appropriate for both bedrooms (well, maybe for the younger fans) and comics rooms! I’m getting a couple to put up next to my Steranko Nick Fury of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Captain America posters (from about a billion years ago!).

Here’s the poster checklist:

A-Force #1

A-Force #1


A-Force #1*

Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1

Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1


Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1*

Avengers: Ultron Forever #1

Avengers: Ultron Forever #1


Avengers: Ultron Forever #1

Civil War #1

Deadpool’s Secret Secret Wars #1

Deadpool’s Secret Secret Wars #1


Deadpool’s Secret Secret Wars #1*

Giant-Size Little Marvels: AVX #2

Giant-Size Little Marvels: AVX #2


Giant-Size Little Marvels: AVX #2

Infinity Gauntlet #1

Infinity Gauntlet #1


Infinity Gauntlet #1 (This one was actually a Westfield Newsletter cover (kinda) back in the day, when there still was a print newsletter.)

Weirdworld #1

Weirdworld #1


Weirdworld #1

* KC votes for most awesome. Note: Civil Wars #1 is not shown in Marvel Previews.

Skottie Young. Making comics fun again. More people should do that.

THIS MONTH IN CLASSIC COMIC BOOK COLLECTIONS

Astro Boy Omnibus Volume 1

Astro Boy Omnibus Volume 1


Astro Boy Omnibus Volume 1 (Dark Horse): A manga icon returns in this new series intended to get these amazing and historical works created by the late Osamu Tezuka back into print in America. Built by a brilliant scientist to replace his lost son, but with powers beyond imagination, the robot Astro Boy fights for the oppressed and helpless — human, alien, or robot. Astro Boy is action-packed, classic fun for all ages, now featured in value-priced omnibus editions!

The first volume will collect nearly 700 pages of stories. Details at this time are hard to come by (including whether the books will use the original American translations by author/historian Frederick L. Schodt). Dark Horse previously published Astro Boy in 2002 with Schodt’s translations. The original series ran in Japan from 1952 to 1968 and has reportedly sold approximately 100 million copies around the world. This visionary comics series laid the groundwork for the international phenomenon of Japanese anime and manga, with the series becoming three animated series and a 2009 feature film. 688-page 4.5” x 6.5” B&W softcover manga.

Batman Noir: Hush

Batman Noir: Hush


Batman Noir: Hush (DC Comics): Gotham City faces its biggest crisis yet — lack of color! We don’t know if it’s some nefarious plot by the Joker or the Riddler or even Mr. Crossword Puzzle (who?), but one of the most famous and fan-favorite Batman stories — specifically Hush by Jeph Loeb, Jim Lee, and Scott Williams — is being reprinted in a new hardcover edition in stark black and white. (Stark, eh? I knew you couldn’t trust those armored-up, deranged alcoholic billionaire technological geniuses!) (Wait, I’m now being told that this book has nothing to do with that Tony Stark. Hmm, dodged a bullet there, DC…) In fact, this book is about Batman facing what might be the most intense case of his life, as secrets from his past flood into the present, and the most notorious villains to ever haunt Gotham City’s streets attack simultaneously! Or, in other words… Tuesday. It also guest-stars the Dark Knight’s greatest allies and enemies in this collection collecting Batman #608-619 as well as the six-page chapter from Wizard #0 and a two-page origin story that originally appeared at dccomics.com. 304-page B&W hardcover. Available in September.

Black Panther by Christopher Priest: The Complete Collection Volume 1

Black Panther by Christopher Priest: The Complete Collection Volume 1


Black Panther by Christopher Priest: The Complete Collection Volume 1 (Marvel): The Black Panther has been blessed with a lot of really caring and talented professionals over his wildly eclectic heroic career. Don McGregor’s epic run on the character still holds up, but right up there with it is Christopher Priest’s late-1990s reinvention of the character (and series) as a sharp and witty political satire. Priest puts the emphasis on the Wakandan king’s reputation as the ultimate leader, as seen through the eyes of the U.S. government’s Everett K. Ross — one of the best supporting characters ever.

But it’s the king T’Challa Priest handled suburbly, balancing the contradictions in a warrior statesman whose kingdom encompassed both ancient traditions and modern technology. Plus, Priest invented the amazing Queen Divine Justice, a street-smart woman from Chicago who became one of the Dora Milaje, the Panther’s “warrior wives”. As the Panther investigates a murder in New York, Ross plays devil’s advocate in an encounter with Mephisto, and a new regime seizes control in Wakanda. When the truth behind the coup becomes clear, T’Challa finds himself an enemy of the state — and a major revelation threatens to destroy his relationship with the Avengers! Also features work by Joe Quesada, Mark Texeira, Vince Evans, Joe Jusko, Mike Manley, Mark Bright, and Sal Velluto. Cover by Quesada. Collects Black Panther (1998) #1-17. 416-page color softcover. Available in August.

Daredevil: Typhoid’s Kiss

Daredevil: Typhoid’s Kiss


Daredevil: Typhoid’s Kiss (Marvel): Daredevil’s craziest ex-girlfriend, Typhoid Mary, stars in her own twisted fairy tale. This dysfunctional collection assembles a lot of diverse tales of (don’t call her crazy!) Mary Walker, from the halcyon time period when psychotic women ruled comics. (Something in the water at Marvel?) Guest-starring Spider-Man, Ghost Rider, Wolverine, and Mary’s favorite, Daredevil! Collects Typhoid #1-4, Marvel Comics Presents (1988) #150-151, and Spectacular Spider-Man (1976) #213-214 — plus material from Marvel Comics Presents (1988) #109-116 and #123-130 and Girl Comics (2010) #3. Features work by Ann Nocenti, John Van Fleet, Steve Lightle, Fred Harper, and James Fry. Cover by Joe Madureira. 416-page color softcover. Available in August.

Deadpool: Flashbacks

Deadpool: Flashbacks


Deadpool: Flashbacks (Marvel): All of Deadpool’s fan-favorite flashback issues, collected in chronological order! (Maybe… who really can tell? And hey, does Deadpool really have fans? I’m very skeptical…) Includes Nick Fury and time-traveling Hitler! Power Man and Iron Fist! Deadpool with Infinity Gems! Roxxon everybody! Collects Deadpool (2012) #26, #20, #13, #7, #250, #34, and #40. In that order, apparently. Written by Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn and penciled by Phil Noto and Scott Koblish. Cover by Kris Anka. 168-page color softcover. Available in August.

Doctor Strange: Don’t Pay the Ferryman

Doctor Strange: Don’t Pay the Ferryman


Doctor Strange: Don’t Pay the Ferryman (Marvel): This is from the great Roger Stern-written era of amazing Doctor Strange stories, collecting Doctor Strange (1974) #75-81, where Doc joins Reed and Sue Richards in battling Mephisto, while the enchanting sorceress Topaz is freed from hell — but her soul is still in torment. (Based on writing this particular column, I think I can relate.) Plus, Strange’s famous cloak is clawed to pieces by demons, so he’s unable to make random ravishing assistant-women appear until he gets a new one from the demon tailor Urthona. (Oh wait, he’s not? I really need to re-read these stories. If only there was a collection of them…) Features work by Roger Stern, Sal Buscema, Chris Warner, and Peter B. Gillis. Cover by Mike Mignola. 176-page color softcover. Available in August.

Free Country: A Tale of the Children’s Crusade

Free Country: A Tale of the Children’s Crusade


Free Country: A Tale of the Children’s Crusade (DC Comics/Vertigo): This one features work both old and new! Neil Gaiman explains: “A long time ago, I wrote the first part of a story, and waited to find out how it middled, then worked with Jamie Delano and Alisa Kwitney on the end. For years people have asked how and when they could read all the story of The Children’s Crusade. I’m glad to say that it’s now been retooled and refinished, and is something both old and new — a forgotten jewel and a new delight.” When several children go missing in a small English town, the Dead Boy Detectives are on the case. A series of strange and unexpected twists takes them to Free Country, a place that dates back a millennium, where children never grow old and are free from the abuse and tyranny of adults. But Free Country is failing, and what it needs is the strength of five innately powerful children –- including the young sorcerer Timothy Hunter -– to restore their uncanny world to what it once was.

This new hardcover collects The Children’s Crusade #1-2 as previously published, adding a brand-new middle chapter written by novelist Toby Litt (Dead Boy Detectives) and drawn by artist Peter Gross (The Books of Magic, The Unwritten). This apparently replaces the original story material that ran through 1993’s Vertigo annuals in their only crossover event (which was planned to be collected in 2013, but that book was never released). The book also features a new introduction by Gaiman, plus new cover art by artist Mark Buckingham (Fables, Dead Boy Detectives). New stuff! Yay! 200-page color hardcover. Mature Readers. Available in September.

MARVEL EPIC COLLECTIONS:

Daredevil Epic Collection: Widow’s Kiss

Daredevil Epic Collection: Widow’s Kiss


Daredevil Epic Collection: Widow’s Kiss (Marvel): Volume #21 in the Daredevil Epic Collections. Daredevil’s first comic book series hurtles to a finish, and it’s going to end with a bang! Plus, Gene “The Dean” Colan returns to drawing ol’ Hornhead! Features terrifying Mister Fear, ex-love Black Widow, evil mutant Omega Red, clinically insane mutant Deadpool, just insane Typhoid Mary (it must be her month!), and Deuce the Devil-Dog who apparently has some connection to Deadpool (terrifying clinically insane evil mutant ex-love?). Plus, Matt Murdock regains his sight? Or maybe just his hindsight, as he flashes back to when he first met Foggy Nelson. Features work by Joe Kelly, Scott Lobdell, DG Chichester, Cary Nord, Ariel Olivetti, Cully Hamner, Tom Morgan, Lee Weeks, and others. Cover by Gene Colan. Collects Daredevil #365-380 and #-1 and Daredevil/Deadpool Annual ’97. 504-page remastered color softcover. Available in August.

Power Man & Iron Fist Epic Collection: Heroes for Hire

Power Man & Iron Fist Epic Collection: Heroes for Hire


Power Man & Iron Fist Epic Collection: Heroes for Hire (Marvel): Marvel’s stronger-than-steel man of the streets, Luke Cage, partners with the mystic kung-fu master Iron Fist in the beginning of one of the greatest (and oddest) teams in comic-book history! This inaugural Epic Collection features the beginning of our heroes’ partnership plus guest appearances by the X-Men and Colleen Wing and Misty Knight, the Daughters of the Dragon. Classic villains include Nightshade, Bushmaster, and Sabretooth. Features great reads by Mary Jo Duffy and Kerry Gammill, with Chris Claremont, John Byrne, Trevor Von Eeden, Mike Zeck, Ed Hannigan, Sal Buscema, Bob Layton, Steven Grant, Marie Severin, and more. Cover by Dave Cockrum. One of the classic (and often forgotten) Marvel series of the Seventies! Soon to star in their own Netflix series! Collecting Power Man #48-49 and Power Man & Iron Fist (1978) #50-70. 448-page remastered color softcover. Available in August.

Marvel Masterworks: Spider-Woman Volume 1

Marvel Masterworks: Spider-Woman Volume 1


Marvel Masterworks: Spider-Woman Volume 1 (Marvel): I’m glad that this series is joining the ranks of the classic Marvel series to be Masterworked. (Is that a word? It should be!) It’s one of the strangest comics of the 1970s and has one of the more unique origin tales of the era, involving Hydra, Nick Fury, and the Thing. Raised within the arms of the terrorist group Hydra, Jessica Drew was taught to see the world from their twisted point of view and became a top agent in their international criminal network. As she becomes more involved with the larger Marvel Universe, she sets out to uncover her true origins, her identity, and her place in the world. She’ll employ both her spider-powers and her spycraft in battles with enemies both mystical and macabre. And she’s got a cool 70s costume! (Originally with a hood!) Featuring work by Marv Wolfman, Archie Goodwin, Carmine Infantino, Sal Buscema, Ron Wilson, and John Buscema. Cover by Gil Kane. Collecting Marvel Spotlight (1971) #32, Marvel Two-In-One #29-33, and Spider-Woman (1978) #1-8. 272-page color hardcover. Cover dust jacket is available in two different designs. Be sure to specify. Available in November.

Also Available:

Creepy Archives Volume 22

Creepy Archives Volume 22


Creepy Archives Volume 22 (Dark Horse): Collects issues #104-107 of the infamous horror anthology. Featuring work by Russ Heath, John Severin, Len Wein, Bruce Jones, Larry Hama, Jim Starlin, Terry Austin, Alfredo Alcala, and many others — as well as all original fan pages and letters columns! 240-page 8 3/8” x 10 7/8” B&W hardcover. Available in September.

EC Archives: Two-Fisted Tales Volume 1

EC Archives: Two-Fisted Tales Volume 1


EC Archives: Two-Fisted Tales Volume 1 (Dark Horse): Writer/artist/editor Harvey Kurtzman teamed with legendary artists Wally Wood, Johnny Craig, Jack Davis, Al Feldstein, John Severin, and others to create these powerful stories of struggle and humanity considered to be among the best war stories ever told. Now, Dark Horse presents this first incredible volume, collecting Two-Fisted Tales #18–#23. 216-page 8” x 11” color hardcover. Available in September.

Frank Frazetta’s The Adventures of the Snow Man

Frank Frazetta’s The Adventures of the Snow Man


Frank Frazetta’s The Adventures of the Snow Man (Dark Horse): Although informed by World War II propaganda, Frank Frazetta’s earliest work is nevertheless as artistically nuanced and socially complex as it is innocent. 104-page 9” x 6 3/8” color hardcover. Available in September.

BIG BOOKS

Avengers by Kurt Busiek and George Pérez Omnibus Volume 2

Avengers by Kurt Busiek and George Pérez Omnibus Volume 2


Avengers by Kurt Busiek and George Pérez Omnibus Volume 2 (Marvel): The Busiek/Pérez run on Avengers is one of the high points of the series, re-cementing the importance of the team in the Marvel Universe, as well as redefining some of the classic characters — most notably Ultron, in this collection. Like really scary Ultron tales? Then you’ll love this! Pérez moved on to other projects soon after this story, paving the way for some other great artists to step in, including Stuart Immonen, Alan Davis, and Jerry Ordway, just to mention some of my favorites. A great run of stories and an amazing era of the series! Collecting Avengers (1998) #24-56, #1 1/2, and Annual 2000-2001; Thunderbolts (1997) #42-44; Maximum Security: Dangerous Planet; Maximum Security #1-3; and Avengers: The Ultron Imperative. Written by Kurt Busiek, Roger Stern, Fabian Nicieza, Roy Thomas, and Steve Englehart. Art by George Pérez, Stuart Immonen, John Romita Jr., Steve Epting, Alan Davis, Manuel Garcia, Brent Anderson, Ivan Reis, Patrick Zircher, Bruce Timm, Norm Breyfogle, Mark Bagley, Jerry Ordway, and more. Cover by George Pérez. 1,248-page oversize color hardcover. Available in November.

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns: Deluxe Edition

Batman: The Dark Knight Returns: Deluxe Edition


Batman: The Dark Knight Returns: Deluxe Edition (DC Comics): Collecting both The Dark Knight Returns #1-4 and The Dark Knight Strikes Again #1-3 — in a deluxe edition! In case you haven’t somehow already read this… In a dystopian future, Gotham City cries out for help, and Batman returns, joined by Carrie Kelley to face off against the Joker, Two-Face, and Superman! And then, that second story goes right off the rails. We hear rumors that DC is developing technology that will allow them to inject Dark Knight stories directly into the human brain at birth. But until then, you’ll have to settle for this 512-page 7.0625” x 10.875” color hardcover. Available in September.

Green Lantern: A Celebration of 75 Years

Green Lantern: A Celebration of 75 Years


Green Lantern: A Celebration of 75 Years (DC Comics): Lots of Green Lantern stories from the Golden Age until now! As usual, we don’t know what any of them are, but hopefully the book will contain work by these well-admired Green Lantern creators: John Broome, Gil Kane, Dennis O’Neil, Neal Adams, Geoff Johns, and Green Lantern Prime — Martin Nodell. Cover by Jim Lee and Scott Williams. Those are the guys that did that hushed-up Batman story I talked about earlier. Good to see that they are still getting work from DC! 400-page color hardcover with lots of stories. Available in September.

Guardians of the Galaxy Solo Classic Omnibus

Guardians of the Galaxy Solo Classic Omnibus


Guardians of the Galaxy Solo Classic Omnibus (Marvel): Sure, now they’re all big-deal movie stars! But who were the Guardians before they met? Find out in this complete collection of their earliest appearances! Drax wanted to kill Thanos, who teamed with Gamora early on! (Why?) What’s Rocket doing in the Keystone Quadrant? And Groot is plotting to take over Earth?!? (What the heck!) Plus, a massive amount of early Star-Lord adventures, by surprising creators. And, oh yeah… the Avengers. Collects a lot of hard-to-find material including Incredible Hulk (1968) #271 and Annual #5; Iron Man (1968) #55; Captain Marvel (1968) #27-33, #43-44, and #58-62; Strange Tales (1951) #180-181; Warlock (1972) #9-11 and #15; Avengers (1963) #219-220 and Annual #7; Marvel Two-in-One Annual #2; Marvel Preview #11; Marvel Spotlight (1979) #1-2 and #6-7; Marvel Premiere #61; Rocket Raccoon (1985) #1-4; and Star-Lord Special Edition — plus material from Tales to Astonish (1959) #13; Logan’s Run #6; and Marvel Preview #4, #7, and #14-15. Written by Bill Mantlo, Chris Claremont, Len Wein, Jim Starlin, Mike Friedrich, Steve Englehart, Al Milgrom, Doug Moench, Jim Shooter, Jack Kirby and Scott Edelman. Art by Starlin, Milgrom, Kirby, Sal Buscema, Pat Broderick, Bob Hall, Steve Gan, Keith Giffen, John Byrne, Carmine Infantino, Bill Sienkiewicz, Gene Colan, Tom Sutton, Mike Mignola, Kirby, Mike Zeck, Keith Pollard, and Michael Golden. Cover by Alex Ross. Old dudes should make sure their “medications” are up-to-date and timed properly — ‘cause this is, like, cosmic, man! Like, there’s a talking (kinda) tree in this! Whoooohhh… 1,112-page oversized color hardcover. Also, it’s heavy, man. Like, don’t drop it on your foot. Ow. Available in November.

Swamp Thing by Scott Snyder Deluxe Edition

Swamp Thing by Scott Snyder Deluxe Edition


Swamp Thing by Scott Snyder Deluxe Edition (DC Comics): In these newfangled New 52 (Shhh! That doesn’t exist any more!) stories from Swamp Thing #0-18, Annual #1, and Animal Man #12 and 17, Anton Arcane attempts to destroy the Red and the Green as Rot World ensnares Animal Man and Swamp Thing! (See, color IS important!) Features work by Scott Snyder (His name is in the title! He must be important!), Jeff Lemire, Yanick Paquette, Francesco Francavilla, Kano, Steve Pugh, Timothy Green II, and others. Cover by Paquette. 512-page 7.0625” x 10.875” color hardcover. Available in September.

Next week: Cartoons about WW II, women in comics in WW II, Secret Agent Corrigan, Mouse Guard, J. Scott Campbell, and Hagar the Horrible. All this and World War II.

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KC CARLSON: Loopier than usual this week. I miss sleep.

WESTFIELD COMICS is not responsible for the stupid things that KC says. Especially that thing that really irritated you. Thing that most irritates me: bowels. Stupid flu.

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