Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Marvel's October previews reviewed

Well look who finally decided to drag themselves on to the Internet. Where have you been, Marvel October 2010 Solicitations? DC October 2010 Solicitations were here last Monday, and you usually show up the next day. That means you’re about a week late now. What’s the deal? Didn’t want to let anyone know what you had in you until after the big trade show in San Diego? Too lazy to handle a show and trotting out to be judged on the Internet in the same week? Embarrassed of how many Deadpool books you have coming out*?

Well, at least you’re here now. Let’s see what you’ve got.


Bravo, Mr. Kaare Andrews. While this doesn’t quite eclipse the genius of Astonishing X-Men: Xenogenesis #3’s cover—what could?—this is another solidly constructed, highly imaginative, fairly insane and very distinctive cover. One looks at this and think, “Which issue of X-Men is this? Oh yes, this is the one where they fight a thousand mutant babies.” That’s so much better than the usual thoughts X-Men covers evoke, like, “Ah yes, this is that one issue where Wolverine grimaces and Cyclops’ visor glows red.”


AVENGERS VS. PET AVENGERS #1 (of 4)
Written by CHRIS ELIOPOULOS
Pencils & Cover by IG GUARA
Basic Truth: It’s very hard to protect the earth when you’ve been turned into a frog. The Pet Avengers Return! Good thing, too, cuz dragons have decided that it’s time to take over the world and oppress the silly humans once and for all!!! And since Captain America, Iron Man & Thor are all green and hopping about, here’s hoping they can get used to their new flippers in time to fight alongside Earth’s Mightiest Pets!
40 PGS./All Ages ...$3.99


This seems like a really good idea for the next Pet Avengers story, pairing them with the human (i.e. the popular) Avengers. I would totally buy this, except I decided to switch to trades of future Pet Avengers books after the first series. It was the variants that did it; there were so many cool covers I was missing out on that it only offered extra incentive to wait to read the story in the format more likely to give you all the covers.


CHAOS WAR #1 (of 5)
Written by GREG PAK & FRED VAN LENTE
Penciled by KHOI PHAM
Backup Story Penciled by REILLY BROWN
Cover by ED McGUINNESS
Sketch Variant by ED McGUINNESS
Bigger than THE INFINITY GAUNTLET! More cosmic than ANNIHILATION! Since the end of SECRET INVASION, the CHAOS KING has amassed his army of alien slave gods -- and the time to strike Earth is NOW! Only the greatest Marvel heroes can oppose him -- all led by the newly-returned god of heroes ... HERCULES! But are even his incredible new powers enough to stand against the greatest threat the Marvel Universe has ever seen – a mad god who seeks to destroy Reality itself?
PLUS: While thought dead, Hercules was trapped in a dangerous world that threatened his very sanity. Find out the secret of his exile in a special extra story penciled by PRINCE OF POWER’s Reilly Brown!
40 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99

CHAOS WAR #2 (of 5)
Written by GREG PAK & FRED VAN LENTE
Penciled by KHOI PHAM
Cover by BRANDON PETERSON
The premiere event of the fall continues! When the greatest threat the Marvel Universe has ever seen lays waste to reality and brings Earth's mightiest heroes to their knees, who you gonna call? That's right: the all-new, all-different, all-divine GOD SQUAD! The fan-favorite team from SECRET INVASION returns, led by Thor and Hercules. And check out the cosmic heavy-hitters they choose to round out their sacred strikeforce: Galactus, Silver Surfer, Venus, Sersi and Hellstorm! Plus: After the shocking death of a major Marvel character last issue, you'll never believe who the Chaos King has next on his hit list!
32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99
.

Hmmm. Well, with Prince of Power currently selling at the $3.99-for-22-pages format and the next Pak/Va Lente Herc joint doing likewise (at least starting with the second issue), I guess I’m done with Herc comics in single-issue formats.

And Atlas is cancelled in a few issues.

Which will mean, between more and more Marvel comics crossing past my personal point-at-which-I-won’t-buy-‘em price point and my decision to read new and re-booted books I’m interested in in trade format (the Marvel Adventures stuff, the Jason Aaron stuff), for the first time in about a decade I will be reading zero (0) Marvel Comics comic books in their comic book format .


DEADPOOL TEAM-UP #888
Written by CULLEN BUNN
Penciled by TOM FOWLER
Cover by HUMBERTO RAMOS
Let me tell ya something, Ben Grimm! And when ol’ Deadpool’s yapping, you better listen and listen good! You may think you’re fantastic! But if you’re gonna walk that aisle and get in the ring, you’re better off with me than against me! I’m all about limousines, fine-looking ladies and—woo!—championship belts! By my side … under my tutelage … you might just amount to something! When it comes to clobbering time … it’s time to go to school! And you can take that to the bank, brother, because what ya gonna do … when Deapoolmania runs wild … on you!?!
32 PGS./Parental Advisory …$2.99


Does anyone award prizes for solicitation copy writing? Because whoever wrote this solicitation copy deserves one.

Also, Cullen Bunn is my new favorite name. If I should somehow happen to have a son born in the next few months—by which time I’ll probably hear a new name that will become my favorite—I shall name him J. Cullen Bunn Mozzocco.



Cute.


KLAWS OF THE PANTHER #1 & 2 (of 4)
Written by JONATHAN MABERRY
Pencilled by GIANLUCA GUGLIOTTA
Cover by MIKE DEL MUNDO
Variant Cover by STEPHANIE HANS
Klaw, Master of Sound, is no more dead than he is human. The killer composed of living sound is back with a new and deadly plan that will spill blood from the Savage Land to the streets of New York. Shuri, the new Black Panther, has already tried (and failed) to stop this monster –a defeat that owed as much to her own reckless rage than it does to Klaw’s power. So, Shuri turns to the person who knows more about battling inner rage than anyone. If you think you know the Black Panther –you don’t. So don’t miss this installment of NY Times bestseller Jonathan Maberry’s exciting new series.
32 PGS.(each)/Rated T+ …$3.99 (each)


Uh-oh, Marvel Solicitation Copy-Writer, it looks like you misspelled something in the title of this…oh. Oh yeah. Never mind.


I don’t know who this dude on the cover of the fourth issue of Marvel’s weird Marvelman Family’s Finest book is, but he has a pretty lame costume. A two-letter superhero sybmol look is almost impossible to pull off.

What’s so weird about this book? It’s a $4, 40-page, black-and-white anthology reprint of old, pre-80’s Marvelman stories that I can’t believe there’s a market for. And I love comics from the fifties!


Er, what’s the Eye of Agamotto staring at, exactly?


See girls, that’s exactly the reason why you should zip your tops up. Maybe your d√©colletage wouldn’t be all cut up and bloody if you were properly dressed before going in to Hell’s Kitchen to fight Hand ninja’s or Gordon Ramsay or whatever the cannon fodder in Shadowland is.



That’s a pretty swell “vampire variant” cover Amanda Conner has drawn for the sixth issue of Secret Avengers. It manages to highlight Black Widow’s breasts, making the traditional “Hey, boys! Boobs!.” While also telling a pretty effective visual joke. There’s actually a lot of visual content going on here, as the simple size disparity of a tiny, tiny vampire (I think that’s the current “Irredeemable” Ant-Man) with a full-sized human victim is an amusing image in and of itself, without Widow’s fighting back with an annoyed glance and cocked flicking finger.


SPIDER-MAN VS. VAMPIRES #1
Written by Kevin Grevioux
Penciled by Roberto Castro
Cover by Chad Hardin
VAMPIRES! You can’t trust them, even when they’re on your side. From the pages of Marvel Digital, Spider-Man’s had a long history with Blade, the Vampire hunter, but when he finds him enslaved in an underground, undead fighting league, the web-head must fight Blade for his very life – or face the curse of the Vampire! Kevin Grevioux (ADAM: LEGEND OF THE BLUE MARVEL) and Roberto Castro (NEW EXILES) bring you all the bloodsucking action!
32 PGS./ One-Shot/Rated T+ …$3.99


Well this seems completely random, particularly since it doesn’t seem to tie into the vampire-fighting story going on in the X-Folks’ corner of the Marvel Universe. Well, if you’re going to do a comic with “Vs. Vampires” in the title, I guess now’s the time…


STRANGE TALES VOL. II #1
Written by RAFAEL GRAMPA, KATE BEATON, FRANK SANTORO, DASH SHAW, SHANNON WHEELER, JILLIAN TAMAKI, JEFF LEMIRE, KEVIN HUIZENGA, JHONEN VASQUEZ, GENE YANG, NICK GUREWITCH
Penciled by RAFAEL GRAMPA, KATE BEATON, FRANK SANTORO, DASH SHAW, SHANNON WHEELER, JILLIAN TAMAKI, JEFFLEMIRE, KEVIN HUIZENGA, JHONEN VASQUEZ, GENE YANG, NICK GUREWITCH
Cover by RAFAEL GRAMPA
Marvel’s critically acclaimed indie anthology returns! The best, most exciting cartoonists working today re-imagine Marvel’s greatest characters in three giant-sized issues! And with no ads! Get excited, folks. Comics absolutely do not get more awesome than this! Don’t miss out on what’s guaranteed to be one of the best reads of the year!!!
48 PGS./Parental Advisory…$4.99


They announced this at Comic-Con, and I even posted about it, but I didn’t notice until reading the solicitation that Kate Beaton is listed under written by and penciled by. Is this the Kate Beaton Wolverine comic the world has longed for for so long?! Is Canada’s greatest web cartoonist going to tackle Canada’s greatest superhero?



Fuck yeah.


You know, I’m not sure if I’ve ever read a story where Man-Thing fights ninjas. I think I’ll therefore be looking forward to the “Shadowland” tie-in issue of Thunderbolts. Daredevil should have nothing to worry about from Man-Thing, as the Man Without Fear he probably doesn’t burn at the touch of the Man-Thing.


TOMB OF TERROR #1
Written by JOE R. LANSDALE, ROB WILLIAMS, JOE PRUETT & PAUL HORNSCHEMEIER
Penciled by MARK TEXIERA, JORDAN RASKIN, PABLO PEPPINO & MORE
Cover by TRAVEL FOREMAN
Marvel’s most terrifying monsters star in four tales of harrowing horror! Jack Russell, the Werewolf by Night stalks a killer werewolf in the mountains while searching for a cure that will end his curse. The mal-formed Man-Thing, temporarily in possession of his mind, attempts to save a man from certain death at the hands of racist hunters. And Son of Satan battles a possessed child killer along with the murderous voices in his head. All this and much more in this all-new, all-black-and-white one-shot in the spirit of the Mighty Marvel Magazines of yore, but ALL-NOW in style!
32 PGS./Black & White/One-Shot/Parental Advisory…$3.99


The stars of all my favorite Marvel Essential volumes, in one comic! I’ll be skipping this for the obvious reason, but I’m really curious about Paul Hornschemeier’s name up there, particularly if he’s just writing and not doing any art or coloring or anything. If anything were going to get me to part with an extra dollar for 22-pages of comic (Yes, it’s likely oversized, but it’s also black-and-white), it would be a Paul Hornschemeier written and drawn Man-Thing story.


Tron: The Betrayal #1 (of 2)
Written by JAI NITZ
Plot courtesy STARLIGHT RUNNER ENTERTAINMENT
Penciled by ANDIE TONG
Cover by SALVADOR LARROCA
Get a first look at the world of the upcoming Tron: Legacy! Following the events of the original Tron, the year is 1983 and Kevin Flynn is now in charge of Encom. He’s built it into the largest videogame company in the world. But that’s not all Kevin has accomplished – he’s also secretly built the Grid, a digital world filled with living programs! More than a place where he can race light cycles, it’s a place where he can build and test environments only limited by his imagination. But the Grid is far more complex than even its creator realizes, and even Flynn can’t be in two places at once. As this new world develops a life of its own, Flynn is going to first need the help of an old friend, a security program named Tron. Showcasing a key time of the mythology of the Tron world, part one of THE BETRAYAL will show the early days of the Grid, and the first appearances of the heroes and villains that will be seen in Tron: Legacy.
56 Pages/$4.99/Rated A
© 2010 Disney Enterprises Inc.


As a couple of you pointed out in the comments section of my Comic-Con publishing announcement reaction post, this this is actually the first Disney comic book that Marvel will be publishing since Disney bought the comics company…when was that? Ten years ago now?

I suppose that’s pretty noteworthy.

This is one of those Not For Me comics, as I never saw anything in Tron, and my experience of it was limited to the rather weird arcade game I’d occasionally play at the roller den on Saturdays when Guantlet, Rampage and the cooler games were all taken, and the Atari home game, which I recall being pretty terrible. People seem to be looking forward to the movie remake though, and I hear the trailers went over pretty well.

The last round of Tron comics, published by SLG a few years back, didn’t exactly set the direct market charts on fire, but I suppose interest will be higher for this, due to the movie.

I wonder if this is ultimately going to be a clue of the sorts of Disney-related comics Marvel will publish. Boom’s still doing their duck and mouse comics, so maybe Marvel will be focused on boy (and middle-aged-man) properties, like Tron and, I don’t know, maybe we’ll see some Pirates of the Caribbean or Haunted Mansion comics as the next installments of the movies get closer?


ULTIMATE COMICS SPIDER-MAN #15
Written by BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS
Art by SARA PICHELLI
Cover by DAVID LAFUENTE
Poor Peter Parker. All his friends hate him, his girlfriend has stopped speaking to him and to top it off, the whole world despises Spider-Man. What’s a dude to do?? How about save the world and maybe meet the new love of his life? Fan-favorite BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (NEW AVENGERS) and rising Ultimate sensation, SARA PICHELLI (RUNAWAYS) bring you a new and exciting Spider-Man story you don’t want to miss!!
32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99


Who is that old man in the lower right corner with the Red Ghost haircut, and why has cover artist David LaFuente paired him with a young, fresh-faced girl? Why is the Asian gal blowing bubbles on this cover? Is she dating those bubbles?

Also, I like Sara Pichelli’s art. Hooray for more Sara Pichelli comics.

Also, the re-booted Ultimate Spider-Man is in double-digits already? I decided to switch to trades after the original volume ended, but I’ve yet to get around to doing so yet.


ULTIMATE COMICS THOR #1 (of 4)
Written by JONATHAN HICKMAN
Pencils & Cover by CARLOS PACHECO
Villain Variant by MIKE CHOI
Exploding from the pages of the Ultimates, comes Ultimate Thor! Don't miss the superstar team-up of JONATHAN HICKMAN and CARLOS PACHECO as they go back to the beginning and tell the origin of Thor, Loki and the rest of Asgard! Ragnorak has descended and Asgard sits at the edge of the end. What will become of Thor and the Warriors Three? And what exactly does Baron Zemo, mysterious commander for the Nazis, have to do with it all? Ultimate Comics Thor brings you the untold story of Thor’s thunderous debut!
32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99


They probably should have done this series back before the Ultimate imprint had completely eroded the positive associations it brand once held.


UNCANNY X-FORCE #1
Written by RICK REMENDER
Pencils by JEROME OPE√ĎA
Cover by ESAD RIBIC
Blank Cover also available
Variant Cover by MARKO DJURDJEVIC
Variant Cover by CLAYTON CRAIN
Variant Cover by ROB LIEFELD
“AGES,” PART 1
Wolverine promised Cyclops that X-Force would disband -- he lied. A secret society has resurrected En Sabah Nur, putting into motion events that will turn this age of heroes into an Age of Apocalypse! To hold them back, Wolverine and Archangel bring together Fantomex, Deadpool, and Psylocke to form The Uncanny X-Force! Stained by their history, they are the only ones capable of making the hard resolutions necessary. A band of likeminded friends and mercenaries set to one purpose, one big ugly task -- kill Apocalypse by any means.
32 PGS./Explicit Content …$3.99


It’s highly unlikely that I’ll read this—certainly not in singles for that cover price, and probably not in trade either because of my general lack of enthusiasm for the X-Men franchise—but that looks like a pretty cool line-up, and this is probably the most appealing a book with the word “X-Force” in the title has looked to me since Marvel hired Peter Milligan and Mike Allred to give the title a radical makeover about a decade ago.




*Just five, not counting his membership on the Uncanny X-Force roster and a few guest-appearances.

9 comments:

suckiemcsuck said...

I think, at this point, it's redundant to keep pointing out that you won't buy Marvel books at $3.99.

Robert in New Orleans said...

Not for me. I will eternally agree that four dollars is too much to pay for 22 pages of new material. And I don't care for back-up stories...

Siskoid said...

Vampires? Really? Is there a single person on Earth who isn't sick of vampires by now?

Timbotron said...

I'm right with you on the 3.99 books. My only exceptions are Avengers and New Avengers, and that's just because I'm going for the complete set!

I'm down to 4 Marvel monthlies, everything else is trade only.

Shriner said...

I think they held the previews from SDCC because way too many of these releases are $3.99.

A quick back-of-the-envelope count (excluding things like the Stand and Orson books and not paying attention to page count...)

52 -- $3.99 (including "Pet Avengers" (!))

28 -- $2.99

4 -- $4.99

1 -- $9.99


Bleah.

Anthony Strand said...

Man, except for Tiny Vampire Ant-Man's face, nothing about that Secret Avengers cover looks like Amanda Conner's work.

Also, I can't wait for Strange Tales II. I hope Marvel keeps making kooky anthology series forever.

Andrei said...

regarding Marvelman cover:

That's Young Nastyman. He looks a lot like Black Adam.

LurkerWithout said...

I've got to try and remember to grab that Tomb of Terror one-shot. Lansdale writes some great horror comics...

Isaac said...

You know what my favorite name is right now? I just discovered this the other night when I checked out the new Sherlock on BBC, where the main character is played by a fellow with the insanely awesome name Benedict Cumberbatch.