Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Wednesday is New Comics Day

Every Wednesday we run down the 5 most interesting comics or graphic novels coming out for the week.

Written by James Robinson; Art by Marcos Martin

Can you believe it's been 70 years already? To celebrate, Marvel provides a one-shot containing a new story and a classic reprint. James (Starman) Robinson gives us a tale that goes way back here. Back to before Steve Rogers even became Captain America. In addition, we get to read a classic early Cap story by his creators Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. The real draw for me though is underrated artist Marcos Martin (Amazing Spider-man) who provides the art for Robinson's story. His cartoony style is reminiscent of Darwyn Cooke and Tim Sale and exudes more energy using less lines than most superhero artists could do if they tried.

Written by Robert Kirkman; art by Cory Walker

Robert Kirkman rejoins Cory Walker, his original artist on Invincible for a new 5 issue mini-series published in Marvel's mature readers MAX line. Kirkman has chosen to use this series to update an old Golden Age hero no one's ever heard of who apparently is the first superhero ever created by Stan Lee (as far as I know this isn't an April Fools Joke but you never know today). Keen Marlowe, once known as the superhero The Destroyer, finds out he is dying and decides to take as many bad guys with him as he can in the time he has left.

Kirkman is wildly popular due to his two Image creations - Invincible and The Walking Dead but his Marvel work has been kind of spotty. Under the freer reign of the MAX line though and with an obscure, blank slate character he'll probably be able to be the Robert Kirkman we love.

Here's a preview.

By Boody Rogers
$19.99 | 144pgs

Never heard of Boody Rogers, huh? You're not alone. The last few years have taught us though there is a wealth of forgotten comics creators from the early days of the medium whose weird and imaginative work may not have caught on with readers in the 1940s but is comic gold for ironic hipsters and comic historians alike. Retrospective books like I Shall Destroy All The Civilized Planets! introduced us to twisted golden-age genius Fletcher Hanks and Dan Nadel's anthology Art Out of Time showcased many obscure creators from comics past including Boody Rogers.

This new book, devoted entirely to Rogers' work, contains many warped stories with goofy looking monsters and sexy babes. Allot for roughly 24 hours time after reading this to readjust to your own boring reality.

Here's a slideshow preview.

Written by Geoff Johns; art by Ethan Van Sciver
$3.99 | 40pgs

Back in 2005, Geoff Johns and Ethan Van Sciver made 30- and 40-something fanboys ecstatic by bringing back the One True Green Lantern - Hal Jordan - in Green Lantern: Rebirth. It was an exciting series full of surprises and some interesting retcons that helped set the stage for the new Jordan-focused Green Lantern series that Johns is still writing.

Lightning is striking twice, so to speak, with this new mini-series by the same creative team that hopes to bring Barry Allen back to his rightful mantle of the One True Flash. In some ways his task could be harder here as the current Wally West Flash has been pretty popular for many years thanks to Johns himself who had a long and popular run on the Flash title, making Wally West a very human and likable character. Plus, Barry Allen famously dying at the end of Crisis on Infinite Earths is one of the most important moments in the modern DC universe that some fans may not want undone. But, don't discount us pre-Crisis fanboys and our nostalgia for the way things were. Plus, don't you want to live in a world where no one stays dead?

Written by Grant Morrison; Art and Cover by Cameron Stewart
DC Comics
$3.99 | 40pgs

For a small but vocal minority of the comic book community, this book is the most anticipated release of 2009. I'd count myself as part of that group. Grant Morrison and Cameron Stewart's first Seaguy series was a bizarre story about a somber hero dressed in a diving suit and accompanied by a cigar chomping fish named Chubby Da Choona who embarks on an adventure to save a sentient food from the corporate evil of Mickey Eye and impress the bearded girl that he pines for. Beneath it's seemingly obtuse plot lay Morrison's commentary on the cynical business of superhero comics.

Hardcore Morrison fans loved it but no one else really bought it. Morrison had always planned the first series to be part one of a trilogy and rumor has it he bargained with DC to help write their weekly series 52 in exchange for reversing their decision not to publish any further Seaguy adventures.

In this new 3-issue middle volume, Seaguy has become bitter and has grown to hate the sea. But the world needs him so hopefully he can pull himself together.

Here's a preview!


I failed to mention last week that Boom! Studios released a new Incredibles comic. This week they give us another Pixar book. It's a Cars mini-series that tells the early days of Lightning McQueen

The latest After-Watchmen recommendation from DC. It's the first issue of their classic Vertigo series about a Texas preacher, a vampire, some angels and a guy named Arse Face.

If you're really interested in seeing what Jane Austen's classic novel is about you should probably read PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES but who knows, this could be good too.

Title probably says it all there.

How's this for a lineup? Art by Darwyn Cooke, JH Williams III, Jordi Bernet and Richard Corben.


Rusty Baily said...

Great reviews Rich! I'll have to pick up that Cap book, and I've been told several times to read Preacher! But honestly, I'm still RE-reading The Muppet Show book from last week! D'oh! Thanx!

Rich Barrett said...

Can someone put Seaguy and Flash:Rebirth in my bag? Thanks.

d. morris said...

I was so excited that Seaguy came out this week!

Mitzi said...

I just picked up the Boody book. It is fabulous. The man was easily as twisted as Fletcher Hanks but his art is more light-hearted and his story telling more lively. The artwork is a delight,

In my opinion, every comprehensive comic collection should have Hanks, Rogers and of course Herbie by Ogden Whitney

These three prove that comics were really weird and challenging long before the Undergrounds came along!!

Nice article Rich (Seaguy 4ever!!)

Shawn Reynolds said...

Rich: I made sure you got a Seaguy and a Flash: Rebirth, but it got busy and I forgot to tell you. Oops! Enjoyed the reviews, as always!

Rich Barrett said...

Thanks, Shawn!