Monday, September 17, 2012

DC's previews reviewed

DC Comics released their solicitation info for the books they plan to publish in December of this year today; you can read them all here.

What's noteworthy? Well, not a whole lot. It seems like there are some minor creative team changes here and there, mostly with familiar names coming in for what may be nothing more than stop-gap stints on a couple of titles while new creative teams are sought out.

There also seem to be a lot of crossovers, although I think references to Eclipso and his black diamond may actually outnumber references to The Joker (appearing in almost all of the Bat-titles), "He'l" (appearing in all the Super-books), The Third Army (appearing in all four Green Lantern titles) and Rotworld (appearing in the Jeff Lemire books). What's interesting about the Eclipso teases is that they appear in books set in very different time periods (Demon Knights, All-Star Western, Team 7, Catwoman, etc).

Anyway, let's take our regular closer look at what DC has to offer us in a few months time...


AME-COMI GIRLS: FEATURING DUELA DENT #3
Written by JUSTIN GRAY and JIMMY PALMIOTTI
Art and cover by TED NAIFEH
On sale DECEMBER 12 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
• The first time in print for these digital-first adventures!
• Part 3 of the first Ame-Comi story line!
• The origin of the Duela Dent!
• First appearance of Ame-Comi Brainiac!


Heads-up! Ted Naifeh art!

Again, not an artist whose style seems a good fit for a comic based on manga-style fan service statues, but a great artist nonetheless.


ARROW #1-2
Written by MARC GUGGENHEIM and ANDREW KREISBERG
Art by MIKE GRELL, JORGE JIMENEZ and SERGIO SANDOVAL
...
40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
Retailers: ARROW #1 will ship with two covers. See the order form for details.
• The first time in print for these digital-first adventures!
• Discover exciting new mysteries and plotlines for the ultimate Arrow experience!
• Written by the show’s creators and featuring covers and interior art from legendary GREEN ARROW: THE LONGBOW HUNTERS artist MIKE GRELL!


Good thing they rebooted Green Arrow to make the title and character more like a live-action adaptation of the character might look, so they can adapt him into film or television and then...launch a second Green Arrow comic based on the adaptation...? Man, I'm not sure I follow this whole transmedia thing. Or that DC/Warner Brothers does.


Hmmm...not sure how I feel about this Batman cover Greg Capullo, 50% of the reason Batman is so popular. I like the idea is strong and the image rather arresting, but I don't care for the rendering on The Joker (I think that's who that's supposed to be) nestled inside Batman's head. I suppose it will look busier and less striking once the logo and credits and UPC symbol are attached, but, unencumbered like this, it's a pretty good cover.


BATMAN AND ROBIN #15
Written by PETER J. TOMASI
Art by PATRICK GLEASON and MICK GRAY
Cover by GREG CAPULLO
On sale DECEMBER 12 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T.
• A “DEATH OF THE FAMILY” tie-in!
• Damian vs. The Joker!
• Has The Joker finally met a Robin as dangerous as he is? Or will The Clown Prince of Crime claim another of Batman’s allies as his victim?


Now that's a damn disturbing cover!

I'm pretty sure, like 97% sure, that Damian already met the Joker, and beat the living hell out of him, in the pages of Batman and Robin, so Damian Vs. The Joker doesn't really sound all that exciting.

I almost picked up Batman and Robin #0 last Wednesday, but I flipped through it and saw all those Robins and my head just exploded. I can't take this half-assed reboot. Like, I hate the full-on reboot of most of the titles, but the make-it-up-as-we-go-along, maybe-it's-a-reboot-maybe-not nature of the Batman titles might be even more frustrating.


From the Department of Great Cover Ideas, Poorly Executed.


Hmmm...Deathstroke's stupid costumes looked a lot funnier when Simon Bisley was rendering them on these covers. I'm kind of fascinated by weapons Photoshopped into this image though.


Why is Firestorm fighting Captain Atom on the cover of The Fury of Firestorm: The Nuclear Men...? I assume because Cap bit off Firestorm's signature hairstyle, and Firestorm is furious about it.


Oh, the policemen and their cars form a Green Lantern symbol! I get it!


HUMAN BOMB #1
Written by JUSTIN GRAY and JIMMY PALMIOTTI
Art and cover by JERRY ORDWAY
On sale DECEMBER 5 • 32 pg, FC, 1 of 4, $2.99 US • RATED T
• Ex-Marine and war veteran Michael Taylor discovers a conspiracy to use human bombs to destroy the United States! But how can he possibly stop them when he could be their ultimate bomb?


Hey, it's the latest in the Hey, let's give those writers who wrote all those shitty Freedom Fighter comics no one liked and no one bought a fourth chance to maybe succeed suite of miniseries!

This one, at least, will have Jerry Ordway art, so the relatively few people who might actually read it will at least see some pretty artwork.


Wow.


JUSTICE LEAGUE #15
Written by GEOFF JOHNS
Art and cover by IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO
Backup story art by GARY FRANK
Variant cover by BILLY TUCCI
1:25 “Throne of Atlantis” Variant cover by JIM LEE and SCOTT WILLIAMS
1:100 B&W Variant cover by IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO
On sale DECEMBER 26 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
Combo pack edition: $4.99 US
• Part 1 of “THRONE OF ATLANTIS,” crossing over with AQUAMAN!
• Don’t miss the debut of IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO (AQUAMAN) as the new JUSTICE LEAGUE art team!
• Can the Justice League band together to battle the forces of Atlantis?
• And in the backup feature, Shazam comes face to face with Black Adam, and Billy makes a decision that will shock his friends!


Okay, a direct crossover with $4 Justice League is about as clear a “drop this!” signal as I could get regarding Aquaman, which I’ve been on the fence about more and more each month (I’ll probably finish the current arc, because I’m OCD about that kind of thing. Looks like the art team will be changing as well, if Reis and Prado are on Justice League now).

I still can’t get over just how frustrating it is to read these solicits and see stuff that I know would totally excite me were this the pre-New 52 universe, and then feeling nothing but apathy, because it’s these new, Ultimate versions of the characters I don’t know or like.

Oh, and I normally excise the bits regarding the variants, but I left it in here, as I was thinking about/linking to/suggesting you think about variants after Brian Hibbs’ latest installment of “Tilting at Windmills,” and thought it worth shile to note how many issues of this comic retailers are being asked to order to get access to the Jim Lee and black and white variants. Keeping in mind that Justice Leage is one of the direct market’s best sellers and DC sellers, one wonders how much worse it would do if it were being sold merely on the merits of the comic itself, and not having its sales artificially goosed by a collectible variant scheme.


...

I...

I got nothing.


SCOOBY-DOO, WHERE ARE YOU? #28
Written by SHOLLY FISCH
Art by ROBERT POPE and SCOTT McRAE
Cover by SCOTT GROSS
On sale DECEMBER 5 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED E
• Oh no! A royal wraith is terrorizing a Chanukah celebration!
• Can Scooby and friends save the Festival of Lights?
• Find out what other yuletide ghouls lurk in this Scooby-Doo holiday special!


Having now watched the bulk of the first season of Scooby-Doo: Mystery Incorporated on DVD, I can honestly say I wish to God DC were doing a comic based on that particular iteration of the Scooby cartoon shows because it is awesome.

I also wish whoever was editing Boom's Adventure Time comic was also editing DC's Scooby comics, or that DC would at least steal a few pages from Boom and try to recruit talented alternative comics creators to provide back-ups and covers for Scooby-Doo.


SHOWCASE PRESENTS: THE JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA VOL. 6 TP
Written by LEN WEIN, DENNIS O’NEIL, CARY BATES and others
Art by DICK DILLIN and others
Cover by NICK CARDY
On sale JANUARY 23 • 528 pg, B&W, $19.99 US
• In this new, value-priced collection of stories from the 1970s, the JLA faces foes including Felix Faust, the Shaggy Man, Eclipso, Amazo, the Injustice Society and more.
• Collects JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #107-132.


No lie, this is the single book I'm most looking forward to this month.


WONDER WOMAN #15
Written by BRIAN AZZARELLO
Art and cover by CLIFF CHIANG
...
On sale DECEMBER 19 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
Retailers: This issue will ship with two covers. The variant cover will feature the standard edition cover in a wraparound format.
• Who is Orion — and what are the New Gods?!
• Massive changes are coming for Wonder Woman and the entire DC Universe!
• Get ready for round 1 of Wonder Woman vs. Orion!


It's somewhat curious to see Orion and the New Gods appearing in Wonder Woman of all places. As I said when Azzarello and Chiang teased their appearance at the end of the last issue of their comic, it makes sense, given the book's focus on the gods and changes in the Greek/Roman pantheon, but, at the same time, Darkseid and the Parademons played a big role in the first six issues of Justice League (and the first issue, at least, of Earth 2), so JL would have been where I expected to see the New Gods appear next.

Of course, JL writer Geoff Johns has been using Wonder Woman's supporting cast in that book, and plans to writer her romance with Superman and introduce her archenemey Cheetah there, so maybe it's fair that Wonder Woman get something in exchange...

Nice Chiang, cover. His style is such that even an idea that might prove lackluster in other hands (Ivan Reis has done a couple of riffs on the "opponent's reflection appearing in shiny surface" on Aquaman covers over the past year), looks dynamite when he draws it.

4 comments:

Akilles said...

I think that Deathstroke vs. Hawkman-fight seems interesting. But then again, I`m not reading any of the current DC-books.

About that Showcase-book...That IS the best DC-book, that month. I mean...Doll man! Freedom ighters-comics from the 70`s! Uncle Sam and JLA!

Too bad that I will probably get it years later. Why? Because.

googum said...

I wasn't as keen on that Batman's head cover, but it is instant meme. Make your own!

Billy said...

That's Joker in Batman's head? That makes so much more sense than who I thought it was. My initial thought was "Why is Booster Gold in Batman's head?"

Rev'd '76 said...

How is it DC took the most overaccessorized merc in their catalogue and made him look even more clunky? Gah! These renderings make Bisley's excess look svelte.

On the positive, man: Art Thirbert. He inks a mean, clean line. Too bad he's still doing scut work for the man instead of doing his own books!