Wednesday, August 23, 2017

DC's November previews reviewed

BATMAN AND THE SIGNAL #1
Written by SCOTT SNYDER and TONY PATRICK
Art and cover by CULLY HAMNER
...
Batman may own the night, but with new villains emerging during the day he needs an ally to defend the city when he can’t. Only one teen is up to the challenge, Duke Thomas. After months of training, he’s ready to step out of the shadow of the bat to become his own kind of hero. Meet Gotham City’s newest protector: The Signal! Spinning out of adventures in ALL-STAR BATMAN and WE ARE ROBIN, comics superstar Scott Snyder and newcomer Tony Patrick take our young hero to new heights in this exciting miniseries with artwork by Cully Hamner.
On sale NOVEMBER 8 • 32 pg, FC, 1 of 3, $3.99 US • RATED T+


So, I suppose we should talk about this, huh?

I've been a fan of the Duke Thomas character ever since Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo and company first introduced him as a little kid in their flashback Batman arc, "Zero Year." I've enjoyed what Snyder, Tom King and others have done with Duke post-We Are Robin, where he became Batman's new not-a-Robin sidekick and partner. The only frustrating element of his recent appearances in comics like All-Star Batman, Batman and the Metal preludes? He hasn't had a superhero codename. Realistically, a mysterious vigilante crime fighter doesn't have to have a codename, but well, this is Batman we're talking about, a guy so obsessed with branding that he actually dresses up as his own logo.

Part of what has made Duke's nameless status so frustrating is the fact that he's been dressing in a yellow, bat-themed costume, which doesn't lend itself to any bat-themed codenames. The best I, or any of you who have commented here, have come up with so far is The Golden Bat. Well, it looks like DC has finally settled on a superhero identity for Duke, and it is just awful: The Signal.

As in the bat-signal. I guess.

I kinda hate it. It's even worse than "Orphan," which Batgirl Cassandra Cain has been using for some reason, or "Orpheus," a short-lived attempt at an addition to the Batman Family.

I'm not too terrible fond of the new costume, either, which looks like a more fussed-over version of the one he's been wearing, which you can see on the solicited cover for New Talent Showcase #2017:
So looking at the history of Batman sidekicks and fellow crime fighters, they generally feature names based around a bat (Batgirl, Batwoman, Batwing, Chief Man-of-Bats), a bird (Robin, Red Robin, Red Raven, Bluebird) or something wing-related (Nightwing, Azrael). There are, of course, outliers (Oracle, Orpheus, Spoiler, The Red Hood).

Coming up with a bat-related name isn't easy, especially given the particular role that they seem to be setting out for Duke, as Gotham City's day-time Batman. Aside from Golden Bat or the less prestigious Yellow Bat, there's, let's see, The Bat, Batboy, Teen Bat, Batman Junior, Daybat, Dawnbat, Sonar*, Flying Fox or...um...Oh! Kid Chiroptera! I like that one. No one use that! I've got dibs; maybe I can use it somewhere someday. (Unless you are Duke Thomas, then I suppose I will let you use it.) Now were it not for the day-time thing, I guess there are a couple of other bat-related names--Shadow Bat, Vampire Bat--that sound cool, but don't really work given Duke's remit (And if he weren't married to that color scheme, he could just use a cool color and be, like, The Blue Bat or The Red Bat. But not The Black Bat; I'm hoping Cassandra reclaims that at some point, if they insist that there can't be more than one person using the name Batgirl at a time.

As for birds, just about any cool-sounding bird you can think of has already been used for some superhero somewhere or other (He could probably use Redbird, the name of Robin III's old car, though, or maybe Firebird or Sunbird? Phoenix is taken). I've always liked Blackbird as a name for a bird-themed Batman ally, but given the fact that Duke is a black kid, it would seem a little blaxploitation for him, I think.

He could just go with a name that has nothing to do with bats or birds, of course. Azrael is named after an angel of death; Duke could use the name of the most frightening angel of all, and go by Morningstar. That works with his Batman-of-the-day thing, too. Most of the members of The Club of Heroes/Batman Incorporated had bat-free names. He could use the name of a DC hero not currently in usage, like, say the-generic-but-still-accurate-sounding The Guardian. Or maybe The Shining Knight, to contrast against The Dark Knight? Or just The Knight? Surely England's The Knight won't sure him or anything. Perhps The Creator or The Detective, playing off of nicknames of Batman?

He could also change his colors and costume and go by the name Gotham, previously used by the late brother of Gotham Girl, who Duke bonded with a little in the pages of Batman and during the "Night of the Monster Men" story. Or maybe The Gothamite? I didn't much like Gotham's costume, but I think it could be worked into a cool one for Duke, if it involved a jacket.

Well, I suppose it's too late now, and the die is cast, but man, I feel pretty worried, as I don't want the possession of the lamest name of any Batman ally ever to be the thing that drags Duke Thomas down and gets him killed off by The Joker or some dumb thing. I'm assuming the reason for his name will be explained in the series proper, and it will be a good enough explanation to sell it to me. That, or maybe I'll just get used to it if I hear it enough times. (But probably not! "Orphan" has yet to grow on me)


BATMAN: ARKHAM — THE JOKER’S DAUGHTER TP
Written by BOB ROZAKIS, MARGUERITE BENNETT, J. TORRES, GEOFF JOHNS and others
Art by IRV NOVICK, DON HECK, JOSE DELBO, GEORGES JEANTY, MEGHAN HETRICK and others
Cover by JASON FABOK
The Joker’s Daughter’s greatest stories are collected in one definitive book including her earliest appearances dating back to the 1970s from the pages of BATMAN FAMILY #6, 8, 9, 16 and 19, TEEN TITANS #48, DETECTIVE COMICS #482-483, TITANS SECRET FILES #2, TEEN TITANS/OUTSIDERS SECRETS FILES #1, BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT #23.4 and BATMAN: JOKER’S DAUGHTER #1
On sale DECEMBER 20 • 200 pg, FC, $19.99 US


Huh.

So if you're familiar with the Batman: Arkham collections, they are basically big, fat "greatest hits" style collections featuring particular Batman villains, with "greatest hit" being defined as a story short enough to fit in an anthology with a bunch of other stories, as opposed to being a long enough one that it deserves its own trade.

I'm really quite surprised to see one devoted to The Joker's Daughter, given the character's relative obscurity; I would have assumed they would have done Arkham collections featuring Black Mask, The Ventriloquist, The Cavalier, Killer Moth, Catman, Ratcatcher, Anarky, Crazy Quilt, Calendar Man and maybe Cornelius Stirk before they got around to The Joker's Daughter. I mean, only two of the above comics are ones that feature the version of the character on the cover, the post-Flashpoint version who found The Joker's flayed-off face floating in the sewer and decided to start wearing it.

The others aren't even just pre-Flashpoint, the vast majority are pre-Crisis, and feature the original, 1970s iteration. I can't imagine how relevant those stories will be to modern readers. Perhaps the simple fact that the character has the word "The Joker" in her name makes an Arkham anthology starring her a more salable proposition than it might otherwise have been...?

Now, these Batman: Arkham books are always at least somewhat interesting to read, because they give readers a portrait of sorts in terms of what the publisher currently thinks of the character, and which stories best encapsulate what that character is all about. This one I will read for an entirely different reason than the curiosity that inspired me to pick up the other ones: A good 80% of these are comics I've never read before.


BATMAN BLACK & WHITE SPY VS. SPY AS BATMAN BY PETER KUPER STATUE
Designed by PETER KUPER
Sculpted by IRENE MATAR
Holy identity crisis, Batman! Who will win this epic battle of BATMAN BLACK & WHITE SPY VS SPY AS BATMAN statue? Designed by “Spy vs Spy” artist Peter Kuper and sculpted by Irene Matar, this statue stands on the trademark Batman Black & White symbol base.
Limited Edition of 5,000
Measures Approximately 7.47” Tall
$80.00 US • On Sale MARCH 2018
Allocations May Occur


If this isn't the weirdest fucking thing DC Comics has ever solicited, I sure would like to know what is.




BATMAN: CREATURE OF THE NIGHT #1
Written by KURT BUSIEK
Art and cover by JOHN PAUL LEON
Young Bruce Wainwright lost his parents in a violent crime…and in the real world, no superheroes exist to save the day. But as grief and rage builds inside Bruce until he feels he can’t keep it inside anymore, something strange starts taking wing in the Gotham night! Perhaps Bruce’s grief isn’t inside him after all?
Modern masters Kurt Busiek and John Paul Leon unite for the spiritual companion to the beloved SUPERMAN: SECRET IDENTITY, putting a new spin you’ve never seen before on the legend of Batman—and the dark emotions that drive him!
On sale NOVEMBER 29 • 48 pg, FC, 1 of 4, $5.99 US • RATED T+

So when I first saw this, I immediately thought of Realworlds, that strange suite of prestige format comics that DC released in 2000, each featuring a story set in our real world, in which the fictional characters of DC Comics somehow influenced the action: Realworlds: Batman, Realworlds: Superman, Realworlds: Wonder Woman and Realworlds: Justice League of America.

I never read any of those. Suddenly I'm curious.

In reality, however, the closest like book is of course the very one mentioned right there in the solicit itself: Superman: Secret Identity, also written by Busiek (It was Stuart Immonen who drew that one, though).


BLACK LIGHTNING: COLD DEAD HANDS #1
Written by TONY ISABELLA
Art and cover by CLAYTON HENRY
...
All-new mini-series by original creator Tony Isabella teamed with superstar artist Clayton Henry! Black Lightning is back and things are not the same! In his home town of Cleveland, high school teacher Jefferson Pierce is a role model for his students. As Black Lightning, he’s fighting to keep them safe, even as his city’s streets are invaded by local gangs with deadly super-weapons. And wait until you see who their supplier is! Real-world issues in a super-hero world! Expect the unexpected!
On sale NOVEMBER 1 • 32 pg, FC, 1 of 6, $3.99 US • RATED T

Cool snorkeling mask Jefferson, but I've gotta warn you--the Cuyahoga and Lake Erie are both a lot cleaner than they were back in the day, but they're still not great for snorkeling.

This is actually probably a pretty big deal for fans of Tony Isabella and/or Black Lightning, given the disagreements and tension between the writer and the publisher for...well, years. I've always liked the character, despite some difficulties with him (it is my firm belief that he should shoot black-colored lighting or, at the very least, purple-ish colored lighting that looks to be the same shade as that which emanates from a black light).

I'm pretty sure he was introduced into The New 52 pretty clumsily alongside Blue Devil, but I'm assuming Isabella's involvement means this series will move the character closer to the original, superior conception. Also, I'm pretty stoked that it's set in Cleveland.


DETECTIVE COMICS #968
Written by JAMES TYNION IV
Art by ALVARO MARTINEZ and RAUL FERNANDEZ
Cover by EDDY BARROWS and EBER FERREIRA
...
“A LONELY PLACE OF LIVING” finale! Tim Drake is back on Earth — but if the deadly threat he brought back with him from outside of time has its way, it won’t be for long…and this shadowy figure wants to take one of Batman’s team down with him, too! Everything Tim died for the first time is at risk, if he can’t survive this attack!
On sale NOVEMBER 8 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T


Oh man, this would have been the perfect time to unveil Tim's new, non-terrible Robin costume! Ah well, maybe soon.
It's just too bad that DC couldn't get George Perez to handle this cover, which is a cover version of his cover for 1999's Batman #442, the conclusion of "A Lonely Place of Dying."
I think Perez and DC aren't talking to each other anymore, over the mess that accompanied the New 52 reboot of Superman they gave him...is that still the case?


DOOMSDAY CLOCK #1
Written by GEOFF JOHNS
Art and cover by GARY FRANK
Variant cover by GARY FRANK
Lenticular cover
DC Comics presents to you a 12-issue maxiseries from the critically acclaimed team of writer Geoff Johns, artist Gary Frank and colorist Brad Anderson. You are not prepared for what lies ahead within these pages, good readers.
On sale NOVEMBER 22 • 40 pg, FC, 1 of 12, $4.99 US • RATED T+


No? Well I am ready to wait for the trade...!

I am honestly a little curious about how Johns will do on this, given that he hasn't written a comic book--or least, DC hasn't published a comic book that he's written--in a while. Johns was so prolific for so long that he was basically forced into being in great "shape" as a writer. As he accepted more responsibility as an executive at DC Entertainment and his scripts-per-month dwindled, I think there was a rather notable dip in quality of his work. On the other hand, that happened right around the time of the Flashpoint/New 52 reboot, which really kneecapped Johns' universe-wide momentum, and stripped him of his ability to use one of his greatest strengths as a DC comics writer, so it could be that as much as anything else I noticed.

Anyway, I'm glad he's the one doing it; one of the many, many things I disliked about Before Watchmen was that Dan DiDio, Jim Lee and Geoff Johns were selling the damn thing, but they had hired other people to that thankless (and frankly impossible) task of creating companion stories to one of the big three, industry- and media-changing works of the 1980s, without doing so themselves, despite being comics creators (well, DiDio seems to fancy himself a comics writer, anyway). I think Lee's variant covers was the extent of the trio's involvement in that ill-fated, ill-intended initiative.


HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #32
Written by ROBERT VENDITTI
Art by ETHAN VAN SCIVER
Connecting covers by ETHAN VAN SCIVER
Variant cover by TBD
A METAL tie-in! “BATS OUT OF HELL” part two! The Dawnbreaker descends on Coast City, ready to suck its light away before moving on to the rest of our world. Backed up by the power of the Justice League, Hal Jordan stands ready to stop the perverted Lantern—until the Batman Who Laughs steps out of the shadows.
On sale NOVEMBER 8 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+


Something tells me the solicitation copy writer means something different with the phrase "the perverted Lantern" than what I imagine when I hear it, although the book is rated "T+" so who knows?


HAWKMAN: FOUND #1
Written by JEFF LEMIRE
Art by BRYAN HITCH and KEVIN NOWLAN
Cover by BRYAN HITCH
...
One of DC’S greatest heroes is missing! No one has seen or heard from Carter Hall—a.k.a. Hawkman—in years. Reincarnated repeatedly since the dawn of humanity, Hawkman has spent his many lives uncovering history’s most fantastic mysteries, and now he has become one himself! Take a journey into the one of the darkest corners of the DC Universe as a mysterious man tries to piece together what happened to Hawkman, and how it all connects to the events of DARK NIGHTS: METAL!
ADVANCE SOLICITED • ONE-SHOT • On sale DECEMBER 20 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • FOIL-STAMPED COVER • RATED T+


Oh good. If there's one sort of comic book story DC can never publish enough of, it's a new and totally-not-complicated-at-all origin for their Hawkman character.

I'm mildly curious as to what Lemire, likely working from whatever Snyder has cooked up in Metal, will do with the character; it certainly sounds like the current take is just Geoff Johns' take from JSA/Hawkman, which means the last, what, decade or so of Hawkman stories has just been one big circle...?


JUSTICE LEAGUE #32
Written by BRYAN HITCH
Art by LIAM SHARP
Connecting covers by ETHAN VAN SCIVER
JUSTICE LEAGUE variant cover by HOWARD PORTER
A METAL tie-in! “BATS OUT OF HELL” part two! The Justice League have been separated by the dreaded Dark Knights and are forced into twisted Bat-Caves designed to kill them! The Batman Who Laughs and the Murder Machine experiment on Cyborg, seeing how he reacts to the horrors of the Dark Multiverse! Can the Justice League survive their worst nightmares made real?!
On sale NOVEMBER 1 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T


Slightly depressing that the first time I've been even mildly interested in a Hitch-written issue of Justice League comic is one that is just a tie-in to Snyder's Metal. (This is probably a good time to say it again: Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo for Justice League!) I'm excited to see Sharp's name above though; he drew the League briefly in Wonder Woman, and he did a fantastic job of it. As I was reading the scene, I was wishing DC would hire him for a Justice League story.


JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #18
Written by STEVE ORLANDO
Art by HUGO PETRUS
Cover by CARLOS D’ANDA
...
“SURGICAL STRIKE” part one! After Batman leaves the team, the JLA is at each other’s throats! As Vixen tries to affirm her role as team leader and fill the vacuum, the villain Prometheus arrives in Happy Harbor to prove to the world that the Justice League must be destroyed and lay waste to the heroes once and for all. And he’s brought a friend.
On sale NOVEMBER 8 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T


So it looks like Steve Orlando is going to be using Grant Morrison's JLA villain Prometheus...again. I didn't care for his use of the character as the villain in the first arc of his Midnighter series, for several reasons, most prominent among them is that worst-of-both-worlds impulse that is at the core of The New 52 reboot's problem (I know I've stated this before, but if you just tuned in, I'm referring to the fact that DC's creators want to keep using their favorite characters and writing and drawing allusions and homages to their favorite stories, but the reboot wiped all of those stories away, and was, in fact, designed so that a reader need not have any knowledge of, let alone affection for, the ins-and-outs of those stories; there's a comic-ruining tension between the desires of the creators and the mandate of the publisher that suffuses way too much of the DCU super-comics line).

Orlando, not unlike Detective Comics' James Tynion, seems to have a special affection for the characters, creations and stories of particular writers, and uses and reuses them in his own comics. If that first arc of Midnigher made me uncomfortable for its use of Morrison's Prometheus, the Midnighter and Apollo series was even worse, as it used several such direct homages/allusions/appropriations, the most confounding of which was a handful of minor characters from Garth Ennis and John McCrea's Hitman and a particular item from a particular one of those stories.

Now, I am not an idiot (despite the amount of evidence to the contrary), and I realize that Orlando and Tynion and anyone else aren't permitted, perhaps even encouraged, to use such characters and past plotlines as fodder for their own work, as it is their bosses DC Comics who own all the toys. Still, I think there's a pretty big difference between using The Joker versus using Anarky, or using Starro versus using Prometheus. Legally, yeah, sure whatever, it's okay. But ethically? Or just, like, socially? Is it cool to use Ennis and McCrea's Mawzir, Lords of The Gun and Ace of Winchesters, original creations of theirs that no one else has ever used in their comics...? I don't know; it makes me feel uncomfortable.

Too many of Orlando's comics, like too many of issues of Tynion's Detective, feel like paying to watch a cover band play the hits of their favorite bands, rather than writing new material of their own. The quality is almost immaterial; it's the principle of the thing that feels wrong, you know?


JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA ANNUAL #1
Written by STEVE ORLANDO
Art and cover by KELLEY JONES
Lobo’s secret—revealed! Only Batman has known why Lobo is in the JLA—until now! The Main Man’s secret is laid bare when he recruits Black Canary alone for a mission into deep space to take on one of the nastiest bastiches the galaxy’s ever known. But will this be a one-way trip for Canary? Legendary artist Kelley Jones joins series writer Steve Orlando to find out in what promises to be one of the greatest Lobo epics ever told!
On sale NOVEMBER 29 • 48 pg, FC, $4.99 US • RATED T


That said, I am totally going to read this because, as you may have heard before, Kelley Jones kicks ass.

So it was just a few weeks ago that I read the Jones-drawn Lobo/Roadrunner Special #1, and it occurred to me what a perfect artist Jones is for the Lobo character, and I found myself somewhat surprised that I was unable to come up with any previous examples of him drawing Lobo. Well, apparently someone at DC agreed that Lobo and Jones are perfect for each other, as Jones is the very unlikely artist for this Lobo-centric JLoA annual. Jones ability to draw attractive ladies is a little more hit-or-miss, especially of late, so seeing him draw Back Canary and Lobo in the same story should be interesting.

I dropped this book a few issues in--it wasn't a conscious decision so much as a I missed an issue, my shop ran out, and I figured I'll just trade-wait it from there on out--but I'll definitely pick this up.


MYSTIK U #1
Written by ALISA KWITNEY
Art by MIKE NORTON
Cover by JULIAN TOTINO TEDESCO
Leave the world of the mundane behind and step through the magical doors of Mystik U! After a tragic accident, a young Zatanna Zatara, under the guidance of Rose Psychic, enrolls in a mysterious university that teaches its students how to master their unique brands of magic. Will Zatanna fit in with her new classmates (Enchantress, Sargon the Sorcerer, Faust and more!) and unlock her true potential? Find out in this exciting bimonthly miniseries from novelist Alisa Kwitney (DESTINY) and Mike Norton (Revival, Runaways)!
On sale NOVEMBER 29 • 48 pg, FC, 1 of 3, $5.99 US • RATED T+


Huh. This is a bit of a surprise. Those are two very interesting creators, and I found it intersting to see Kwitney referred to simply as a novelist (which she is), given her rather long history with DC Comics and Vertigo. She was a Vertigo editor for a while, and even did some writing for various Sandman adjacent comics like The Dreaming and Destiny, really rather daunting assignments that begged comparison to Neil Gaiman (From what I remember, her work held up remarkably well, but it's been a while since I've read any of those comics).

Speaking of Vertigo, I wonder if this might be better served as a Vertigo comic than a DCU one, as it would give Kwitney and company more latitude in terms of continuity (I know we've seen Zatanna, Enchantress and Faust post-Flashpoint, and they...don't lend themselves to this sort of story in the forms they were previously seen in. I'm not sure about Sargon; I really rather liked the legacy version of him that had appeared not too long before Flashpoint, though. I really like saying the word "Ibistick," by the way).

Also interesting is the format, which sounds like it might a prestige format miniseries, kinda like that Deadman: Dark Mansions of Boring Gothic Ghost Romance...I think that's the right title.


ROBIN VOL. 5 TP
Written by CHUCK DIXON
Art by MIKE WIERINGO, STAN WOCH, AARON LOPRESTI and others
Cover by TOM GRUMMETT and RAY KRYSSING
In these tales from ROBIN #14-22 and ROBIN ANNUAL #3, Tim Drake takes on the mantle of the new Boy Wonder! These tales include appearances by Catwoman, Green Arrow and Spoiler, plus ninjas galore! Also includes the “Contagion” and “Legacy” crossovers.
On sale DECEMBER 27 • 280 pg, FC, $24.99 US


Keep 'em coming, DC! I lost my long box with all of my Robin comics, which has provided me the perfect excuse to buy these, and re-read those books of my youth hundreds of pages at a time, rather than 22-pages-per month. Looking at the issue numbers versus the contents, they don't really match up, as the "Contagion" issues are #27 and #28, and the "Legacy" ones are #32 and #33. Based on the issue numbers, "Troika" is the only crossover included. Tom Grummett, Mike Wieringo, Steve Lieber and Mike Parobeck penciled issues #14-22, so this was a pretty high point in terms of the series' art. The villains include some Tim's archenemies, like King Snake, Lynx, Cluemaster and The General, plus the KGBeast.


SHAZAM!: THE NEW BEGINNING 30TH ANNIVERSARY DELUXE EDITION HC
Written by ROY THOMAS and DANN THOMAS
Art by TOM MANDRAKE, JAN DUURSEMA, RICK STASI and RICK MAGYAR
Cover by TOM MANDRAKE
Following CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS, Billy Batson returns in a story that begins with a new retelling of his origin! Then, Dr. Sivana brings Black Adam back to our reality to destroy Shazam—but how can a new hero defeat one with identical powers and 5,000 years experience wielding them? Plus, Billy Batson witnesses the creation of Captain Nazi! Collects SHAZAM!: THE NEW BEGINNING #1-4 plus stories from ACTION COMICS WEEKLY #623-626!
On sale DECEMBER 6 • 128 pg, FC, 7.0625” x 10.875” • $34.99 US


So I wasn't reading comics back then, at the tender age of 10 years old, but if this followed Crisis, then it was essentially DC's first attempt to fully integrate Captain Marvel into a shared universe (as opposed to a shared multiverse) setting, right? And therefore was their attempt at the Captain Marvel-centric version of, say, "Batman: Year One," John Byrne's Superman stuff, George Perez's Wonder Woman and Tim Truman's Hawkworld...? It obviously wasn't as successful as those first three; I've not read it, but I assume it's closer to Hawkworld in terms of its overall influence on the direction of the character/franchise?

There are a long, long list of Captain Marvel comics I would love to see collected in trade, and this particular one is near the bottom, but I'm honestly kinda glad it will be available in an easy to find and read format. Also, I'm pretty curious to see what the art produced by the Tom Mandrake and Jan Duursema of 30 years ago looked like...


SUICIDE SQUAD VOL. 7: THE DRAGON’S HOARD TP
Written by JOHN OSTRANDER and KIM YALE
Art by LUKE McDONNELL, GEOF ISHERWOOD and others
Cover by GEOF ISHERWOOD and KARL KESEL
Amanda Waller puts together a special team that includes Suicide Squad founding members Nemesis, Nightshade, Bronze Tiger and Deadshot for a personal mission to preserve the legacy of Rick Flag! Who will make it out alive? SUICIDE SQUAD VOL. 7 collects issues #50-58 of the classic series.
On sale DECEMBER 6 • 240 pg, FC, $19.99 US


Hooray! That leaves just eight more issues of the original (and by far best) volume of Suicide Squad, so one more collection ought to do it, although it might be a bit smaller than this particular collection, so maybe they'll have to find some other stuff to throw in there as well...?

Also: Ha ha, look at poor Katana's stupid costume! Sadly, I don't think that is even her worst one...


SUPER SONS ANNUAL #1
Written by PETER J. TOMASI
Art by PAUL PELLETIER
Cover by JORGE JIMENEZ
“SUPER-PETS UNLEASHED”! The World’s Furriest team Krypto and Titus—together at last! Tired of the boys stealing the spotlight, the doggy duo lead the Super Sons on a canine-powered epic!
On sale NOVEMBER 29 • 48 pg, FC, $4.99 US • RATED T


I am a big fan of any and all super-pets, so I'm pretty excited about this. Of course, I decided to drop Super Sons and trade-wait it, and I imagine this will show up in a trade of it, so I guess I'll have to wait...?

I don't think that Titus has ever met Krypto, but then, Tomasi seems to be the only writer he refers to the little menagerie of animals that Damian has assembled in the Batcave. Hell, I don't know if Titus has ever met Ace, the German Shepherd that Tom King and David Finch introduced in a well-written, poorly-drawn, Eisner-nominated short story, and they both live in the same house (granted, it's a big house). I suppose that's one oddity of the current state of the Bat-Family, that its members cross paths so seldom. Like, one rarely if ever sees Damian and Duke in the same story, even though they are both more-or-less serving as Batman's current sidekicks and partners (Sometimes I get the impression Damian has moved out of Wayne Manor and lives in Titans Tower permanently, but in other stories he and Batman are always together). Anyway, dogs-who-are-also superheroes! Hooray!



*Actually Sophie Campbell, one of my very most favorite artists, came up with that one. When I first reacted to Duke's new hero name on Twitter and said I hated it but couldn't think of a better one, she responded thusly: "Sunset, Sonar, Batmoon, Torpor, Yellow Bat." Woah, wait, wait, wait. Thinking about Batman and Sophie Campbell simultaneously just made me think--Can you imagine how great a Sophie Campbell Batman comic would look? I would love to see that. DC should hire her for an original graphic novel. Although I would love to see her working on something akin to the current Detective Comics premise, with all the teenage sidekicks in a single book. I'm thinking Wet Moon meets Batman...

No comments: