PREVIEWS PICKS FOR JULY/SEPT ‘19

Jedi Master KC Carlson

Jedi Master KC Carlson


A KC COLUMN by KC Carlson

So, here’s some of the stuff I’m ordering from Previews this month. A couple of these scare me, and it’s not even October yet…

Inferior Five #1 Keith Giffen cover

Inferior Five #1 Keith Giffen cover


Inferior Five #1: In 1966, writer E. Nelson Bridwell and artist Joe Orlando created The Inferior Five in Showcase #62. Showcase was an anthology title designed to launch brand new comic book concepts. Among Showcase’s successful launches were The Silver Age Flash, The Challengers of the Unknown, Adam Strange, Rip Hunter Time Master, The Silver Age Green Lantern, The Silver Age Atom, The Metal Men, and many others. It was also the place where The Inferior Five first appeared in #62, #63, and #65, before getting their own series of 12 issues. (The first 10 issues were new with #11 and #12 reprinting the first two Showcase stories.) After that, they guest-starred in various DC titles over the decades. It seemed that the team was one of those concepts that professionals loved, but there were just not enough fans/buyers to make the concept successful.

The five main characters were Merryman (Myron Victor, broadly based on Woody Allen), Awkwardman (Leander Brent), The Blimp (Herman Cramer), White Feather (William King), and Dumb Bunny (Athena Tremor). Merryman was the leader of the group, and when he wasn’t superhero-ing, he was a comic strip artist. (You might have already guessed that this team was an in-joke parody concept.) His parents were retired Golden Age superheroes The Patriot and Lady Liberty. The rest of the characters had code names that explained them: Awkwardman was super-clumsy (but also super-strong). The Blimp could fly, but not very fast. White Feather was an archer, but he was also afraid of pretty much everything… including Dumb Bunny who was both really powerful and really, really dumb. And they were all heroes because all of their parents were, before them.

Inferior Five #1 Jeff Lemire variant cover

Inferior Five #1 Jeff Lemire variant cover


This September (but pre-ordering now), Keith Giffen (Justice League, LSH) and Jeff Lemire (Animal Man, All-New Hawkeye, Moon Knight, and lots of indy work including Essex County) will be the main creative team on a new Inferior Five 12-issue series. Interestingly, the description for the first issue has no mention at all of the classic heroes — just “five misfit kids”. There’s also a back-up series featuring Peacemaker on a mission for Checkmate and Amanda Waller.

Having worked with Giffen previously, I am very, very scared…

Marvel Comics #1,001

Marvel Comics #1,001


Marvel Comics #1,001: Apparently, so many creators wanted to contribute to Marvel Comics #1,000 that they have to do this 40-page overflow book to get everybody in! Contributors include Amanda Connor, Howard Chaykin, Kaare Andrews, Al Ewing, Jimmy Palmiotti, Nick Spencer, Humberto Ramos, Dan Panosian, Frank Tieri, Amy Reeder, Declan Shalvey, Bill Morrison, Brian Posehn, and more!

The Riddler: Year of the Villain #1

The Riddler: Year of the Villain #1


Back at DC Comics, they’re beginning to exploit their current Event Thing-ie: In September, Year of the Villain/Evil Unleashed gives us updated origin stories for two of DC’s main bad guys in Lex Luthor: Year of the Villain #1 and The Riddler: Year of the Villain #1. Both are 40-page one-shots, with Jason Latour writing and Bryan Hitch and Andrew Currie illustrating the Lex Luthor book (cover by Francis Manapul) and Mark Russell writing and Scott Godlewski drawing The Riddler (cover by Mikel Janin). In the books themselves, Lex finds himself at odds with his counterparts from across the Multiverse, while the Riddler is ticked off that he wasn’t a recipient of one of Lex’s “dark gifts”.

Web of Black Widow #1

Web of Black Widow #1


Web of Black Widow #1: In my opinion, Black Widow is one of the great underrated characters of the Marvel Universe, so it’s great to see her headlining her own five-issue miniseries starting in September. Web of Black Widow is written by Jody Houser (Orphan Black) with art by Stephen Mooney (Grayson, Midnighter). Black Widow’s past is being exploited — which means she probably can’t trust anyone!

Harleen #1

Harleen #1


DC’s giving a big push to a new deluxe three-part series (with each issue 64 pages) reimagining the origins of Harley Quinn called Harleen. It’s written and drawn by Stjepan Sejic. The artwork displayed in the new DC Previews looks very cool, but I’m sorry, I’ve just never been able to warm up to what makes Harley so important as a character to so many people. Isn’t she someone people should want to help rather than watch her being abused by characters like the Joker? (There have been some good stories with her on her own, but this project seems to want to dive deep into the relationship.) I understand that many enjoy her chaotic sense of power, never taking anything seriously — but I just want to see her move forward and ditch the bad boyfriend. Maybe this story will be different. I’m not sure I want to spend 24 bucks to find out.

Strikeforce #1

Strikeforce #1


Strikeforce #1 introduces a new team of characters from the Dark Side of the Marvel Universe. Starring Blade, Angela, Spider-Woman, Wiccan, Winter Soldier, Monica Rambeau, and Damion Hellstrom, they apparently fight people that no other team at Marvel can take on. (I miss Stan…) Written by Tini Howard and art by German Peralta. Tagline: No Compromise. No Mercy. My addition: No Interest.

Omnibus Overkill? DC Comics is listing five different Omnibuseses this month (none of which will appear until next year):

Aquaman: The Silver Age Omnibus Volume 1

Aquaman: The Silver Age Omnibus Volume 1


Aquaman: The Silver Age Omnibus Volume 1 which will include all of the character’s back-up stories from Adventure Comics, Detective Comics, and World’s Finest Comics, his Showcase issues (#30-33), Aquaman #1-18, and Brave and Bold #51, as well as odd single appearances in Superman #138 & #148, Action Comics #272, Superman’s Pal, Jimmy Olsen #55, and Superman’s Girl Friend, Lois Lane #12 and #29-31. 1,000 pages. Ships March 2020.

Batman: The Golden Age Omnibus Volume 8

Batman: The Golden Age Omnibus Volume 8


Batman: The Golden Age Omnibus Volume 8: Collects Detective Comics #174-195, Batman #67-77, and World’s Finest Comics #54-63. 680 pages. Ships April 2020.

Doom Patrol by John Byrne Omnibus

Doom Patrol by John Byrne Omnibus


Doom Patrol by John Byrne Omnibus: Collects JLA #94-99, Doom Patrol #1-18, Superman #20, a story from Secret Origins Annual #1, and other behind-the scenes material. 672 pages. Ships Feb 2020.

House of Mystery: The Bronze Age Omnibus Volume 2

House of Mystery: The Bronze Age Omnibus Volume 2


House of Mystery: The Bronze Age Omnibus Volume 2: Collects House of Mystery # 201-226 and features work by Bernie Wrightson, Michael Wm. Kaluta, Sergio Aragones, Alex Nino, and early work by JIm Starlin. 840 pages. Ships Mar 2020.

Jonah Hex: The Bronze Age Omnibus Volume 1

Jonah Hex: The Bronze Age Omnibus Volume 1


Jonah Hex: The Bronze Age Omnibus Volume 1: Collects all the early Hex material from All-Star Western #10-11, Weird Western Tales #12-14 and #16-38, Jonah Hex #1-17, and Justice League of America #159-160. 888 pages. Ships May 2020. (More on this one soon from Robert Greenberger – Ye olde editor)

By the way, yes, I know that it’s Absolute Carnage Month over at Marvel this month. But seeing how he’s my least favorite Marvel character ever, I have nothing to say about him/it. If you think he’s/it’s cool, that great! The rest of us will Caveat Emptor.

Doctor Strange #20

Doctor Strange #20


Speaking of dumb Marvel things… The description for Doctor Strange #20 insists that this is the LAST ISSUE OF DOCTOR STRANGE! Yeah, right… Until the next one… or next series! I suspect a Mark Waid swerve…

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KC CARLSON has way too many things going on this week! You’d think it was summer or something! (Like they’d ever let me out of my basement dungeon… )

WESTFIELD COMICS is not responsible for the stupid things that KC says. Especially that thing that really irritated you. Wasn’t there some sort of science-fiction thingie about having movies and television injected directly into your brain? I’m surprised someone hasn’t figured out how to do that with comic books! Or is that downloading?

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