Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Dark Horse, IDW and Image's November previews reviewed

Let’s try something new. Having already covered DC and Marvel’s plans for November, let’s take a look at what the other three of Diamond’s top five publishers have planned for November of this year. You can see the complete solicitations for Dark Horse, IDW and Image here, here and here.


David Lapham (W)
Gabriel Guzman (P)
Dan Jackson (C) and Jo Chen (Cover)
On sale Nov 9
32 pages
With unparalleled military might and the diligent King Kull on the throne, there are few threats to the mighty Valusia empire, but among the top are the snake-men. They have the ability to change their shape to blend in with the populace, striking from the familiar. What, then, could terrify a snake-man? The greatest threats to civilization are just the pawns of a horrible wizard with powers that dwarf the considerable magics of the snake-men. What chance does Kull, a mortal man, stand against a seemingly all-powerful, immortal foe?

Damn, that’s a scary cat. I don’t see a skull though…

Osamu Takahashi (W/A)
On sale Jan 11
b&w, 192 pages
Don’t say “crazy”! The campus culture festival is coming up for the students of Class 2-A, and in manga these days that means not only cosplay, but starting an all-girl band! But what are they supposed to do about the fact that the keyboardist, Shinji, isn’t, um, a girl? Well, that’s when it’s time for a little crossplay! Plus, a special bonus 4-koma (four-panel gag strip) feature! Each volume contains four opening pages in full color, fan art, letters, and giveaways!

I just tried the first volume of the Campus Apocalypse iteration of the NGE franchise, and it wasn’t very good. I thought this sounded even less interesting, based on the original solicits, but this one sure sounds interesting.

Anyone reading it? Any good?


The Cape #3 (of 4)
Joe Hill, Jason Ciaramella (w)
Zach Howard (a)
Howard, Nelson Daniel (c)
How do you measure evil? Hell-bent on destroying everything in his path, and fuming from his latest setback, Eric makes a decision that will push him past the point of no return.

Huh. I woulda thought that the TV show would have made the words “The Cape” completely radioactive for marketing-to-geeks purposes. But I apparently would have thought wrong.

Chuck Jones: The Dream that Never Was (Crawford: From Conception to Storyboard to Newspaper Strip)
Chuck Jones (w & a & c)
We all harbor a secret wish that we could find a previously unseen project by one of the greatest figures in animation history.

Well, wish no more—celebrating the 2012 centennial of Chuck Jones's birth, IDW's Library of American Comics unveils Chuck Jones: The Dream That Never Was.

Chuck Jones: The Dream That Never Was follows the twenty-seven year journey it took Jones to bring "Crawford" to the public, from conception to storyboard to newspaper strip. This incredible volume is loaded with never before seen sketches, drawings, storyboards and production notes, and the six-month run of the Crawford newspaper comic strip from 1978. Accompanying the artwork is a biography of Chuck Jones’s career in the sixties and seventies and how it influenced the creation of Chuck’s only foray into the world of comic strips.

Chuck Jones: The Dream That Never Was is a dream come true in that almost all the art is being reproduced from Chuck Jones's originals! It is a treasure trove of previously unknown artwork that is a must for all fans of animation and comics.

HC PC $39.99 228 pages 11” x 8.5”

Wow. As you can see from the ellipses in my copy and pasting of the solicit, it’s a long one, but a project that deserves the verbiage.

I can’t wait to take a look at this, and it seems like it would have some real potential to end up being a very big, very talked-about book.

Classic G.I. JOE Vol. 13
Larry Hama (w)
Andrew Wildman and Rurik Tyler (a) Jonboy Meyers (c)
The end of Larry Hama's original run on A Real American Hero is drawing near! Now sporting their own Ninja Force, Drug Elimination Force, and Eco-Warriors, the G.I. JOE team is politically correct and ready for anything. The increasingly colorful adventures continue in classic stories like "Firefly," "Playing with the Big Boys," "Last Stand," and more.
TPB FC $24.99
236 pages 6.625” x 10.187

Wow, 13 volumes already? I’m wayyyy behind on these; I think the last one I read was 7 or 8.

The Dreamer, Vol. 2
Lora Innes (w & a & c)
17-year-old Beatrice Whaley and her wildly vivid dreams about the American Revolution are back in this all-new graphic novel, much to her dismay. After barely surviving a battle against the British Army in the first volume, she's relieved to find herself safely in the 21st century again. She determines to forget about her dreams and try to make things work with the handsome quarterback who asked her out. But as soon as she falls asleep again, the dreams pick right back up and she's just as confused as ever. Bea and her Revolutionary friends must escape New York City under the watchful eye of the British Army and the tension of living two lives finally brings her to the breaking point.
TPB FC $19.99
152 pages 6.625” x 10.187”

I read the first collection of this years ago. I’d want to reread it before reading the second one, but I liked it a whole lot.

Rocketeer Adventures, Vol. 1
Mike Allred, John Arcudi, Kurt Busiek, John Cassady, Darwyn Cooke, Lowell Francis, Dave Gibbons, Joe R. Lansdale, Joe Pruett, Jonathan Ross, Ryan Sook and Mark Waid (w)
Mike Allred, John Cassady, Darwyn Cooke, Tommy Lee Edwards, Gene Ha, Scott Hampton, Tony Harris, Michael Kaluta, Brendan McCarthy, Ryan Sook, Bruce Timm and Chris Weston (a)
Alex Ross (c)
Dave Stevens’ The Rocketeer was an instant hit the moment it hit the spinner racks in the early 1980s. After the untimely passing of Stevens several years ago, many thought there would never be another Rocketeer story. But, with the full cooperation of the Stevens family, IDW has produced an anthology book that utilizes the talents of many of comics’ top creators, a veritable Who’s Who of writers and artists, and each one a labor of love to Dave and his greatest creation!
*Note – All direct market copies of this book will have a dust jacket, exclusive to the direct market, and only available on the first printing!
HC FC $24.99
136 pages 6.625” x 10.187

Because the original Rocketeer comics were more Dave Stevens than a character with limitless adventures, kinda weird. On the other hand, look at that line-up! There are a couple folks there that I’d buy just about anything by (Darwyn Cooke, Mike Allred, Bruce Timm) and a couple of others I like a lot (Busiek, Waid, ) and a couple more I’m really curious about seeing working on The Rocketeer (Michael Kaluta, Brendan McCarthy)

Ghostbusters #3
Erik Burnham (w)
Dan Schoening (a)
Schoening, Nick Runge (c)
In his prophetic dream, Ray was warned about something called The Third—and now, with the reformation of the Destructor on the horizon, Ray's about to come face to face with the creature itself! Who is The Third? What does it want? All the answers in this issue of Ghostbusters, and a Terror Bear besides! Be there!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Yow, that’s a damn scary cover. The characters all look…off, and…weird. I don’t like it. It bothers me.

Also, a Terror Bear…? One of these guys…?*

H.P. Lovecraft’s The Dunwich Horror #2 (of 4)
Joe R. Lansdale (w)
Peter Bergting (a)

The limits of sanity are stretched as the horror continues! The mystery deepens as four young friends must band together to stop the cosmic horror they have unleashed upon an unsuspecting world. They may lose their minds in the process, but that’s much better than the alternative! A new vision of the most famous H.P. Lovecraft story continues, courtesy of Joe Lansdale and company!
32 pages

Hey, why do they call this H.P. Lovecraft’s Dunwich Horror, if it’ s not his “The Dunwich Horror,” but “a new vision” of his story by Lansdale…?

It sorta disturbs me that the lady and the tiger in this image seem to be on such friendly terms, given that the former seems to be wearing the skin of a friend or relative of the latter.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #4
Tom Waltz, Kevin Eastman (w) • Eastman (layouts) • Dan Duncan (a) Duncan, Eastman (c)
The climactic conclusion to the Turtles' triumphant return to comics! The final pieces of the Turtles' mysterious origin are revealed as the Turtles move closer to finding their lost brother Raphael. There's just one thing in their way... an angry, mangy mutant alley cat named Old Hob... and he's got an entire gang to back him up! It's a battle royale on the mean streets of New York and Turtles lore will be forever rewritten! Don't miss it!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Damn, this looks and sounds pretty awesome. I do wish it were just a buck cheaper, and then I wouldn’t feel I had to wait for the trade….

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Micro-series #1: Raphael
Brian Lynch (w) • Franco Urru (a) • David Peterson, Urru (c)
Following in the tradition of the original TMNT microseries comes the first of four stand-alone tales centering on each Turtle. Raphael's place in the world is uncertain and he can't shake the feeling that he'll always be an outsider. That changes when he finds another mutant, the arctic fox Alopex, who may have a new clue pertaining to the Turtles origin. Unfortunately she's too busy being hunted alive to share the info! Will Raphael and his new friend survive the night? The Angel: After the Fall team of Brian Lynch and Franco Urru reveal all! Well, some, anyway!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

This is kind of a neat idea, doing their own versions of the original volume’s one-shot “microseries,” although I wish I had some idea of who the heck those creators were. The bullet points say they are the team that did some Angel spin-off comic, which doesn’t fill me with confidence.


story / art / cover FRANK CHO
32 PAGES / FC / M $2.99
With a catastrophic fossil fuel shortage looming, several scientific and military groups are hard at work trying to find alternative fuel sources and modes of transportation to keep the United States military machine running. A small group of quantum scientists and engineers have made a breakthrough in transportation: space folding. Things go awry on its maiden voyage, though, and instead of teleporting the soldiers across the lab, it sends the entire military base back in time – with disastrous results!

I don’t like the title, although that is what made me notice it, because I see the word “Dinos” and think “I prefer the term ‘dinosaurs’”) and then I realize “Guns and Dinosaurs” would too close to Cadillacs and Dinosaurs.

Nevertheless, I still love dinosaurs, and this might be worth checking out.

story JON GOFF
24 PAGES / FC / T_$3.99
Conceived by legendary storyteller, STAN LEE!!!
Developed by comic book revolutionary, TODD McFARLANE!!!
Inspired by worldwide musical icon, YOSHIKI!!!
As an overwhelming force of darkness prepares for an epic assault on reality, one man must call upon a power beyond his control to stand against the rising tide of Oblivion…Enter the BLOOD RED DRAGON.
With his life suddenly thrown into chaos, Yoshiki must come to grips with the devastating powers at his command. But, with time running out, he must also discern friend from foe, as new players in the war with Oblivion make themselves known, and dark assassins continue their assault on the lyrical heart of humanity…

Those are pretty crazy credits, calling to mind the old Virgin and Radical credits where there are some folks involved at what seems more like conception than comics-making.

Not sure I understand the appeal of the limited print run either, aside form spiking the price of single issues in a way that I think is damaging to the direct market, but I don’t know, maybe retailers like it and it will help whet demand for an eventual trade.

That’s a really neat cover.

Looks like the covers for Haunt have gotten a lot less…icky.

Joe Casey and Nathan Fox make for a hell of a creative team, even if they aren’t the all-star creative team that launched the book, and seemed like they were meant to be the main selling point.

Art & cover KEVIN MELLON
32 PAGES / BW / M
Mixed Martial Arts and comics collide when an office drone named Oren “Rooster” Redmond follows his older brother into the fiercely competitive world of professional MMA. With nothing left to lose, Oren hopes to find his purpose in fighting – but does passion equal proficiency? Does Oren truly have the heart of a champion? Find out in the first chapter of this four-issue series.

The lady from the cover of Booster Gold #23 is apparently writing a comic book.

Art / cover ROB LIEFELD
32 PAGES / FC / T $2.99
Bowen has finally assembled his team and is ready to face The Infinite head-on. But is he too late? Will they be enough? And what happens when one of his own turns their back on the team?

Wait, wait, wait—Rob Liefeld has three issues of Hawk and Dove for DC and four issues of The Infinite for Image? Is this legit? Is Lifeld a comics-drawing machine now or what?

Story /art / cover PAUL GRIST
A BRAND-NEW SUPERHERO COMIC BY PAUL GRIST! It’s the first day back at school for Owen Craig, and it’s not going too well. He’s been run over, got detention, and his police officer father has been taken prisoner by armed bank robbers. And now his body seems to be turning into mud…

This looks and sounds kinda neat.

184 PAGES / FC / E
Everyone’s favorite bear-riding cowboy gallops into his first collected edition! REED GUNTHER and his trusty grizzly bear steed bumble their way through the wild west fighting giant snakes, hoards of mole creatures, a resurrected John Henry zombie, freak show freaks, special government agents, and all sorts of wild monsters created by an ancient mysterious Idol! This colored collection of excitement, friendship, and adventure is fun for folks of all-ages! Collects REED GUNTHER #1-5

I really liked the first issue of this series, but my local-est comic shop wasn’t ordering issues of it. I was planning on looking for the next few at the next local-est comic shop next time I was there, but if the whole shebang is gonna be collected in trade in a few more months, I guess I might as well wait for the trade at this point.

*I loved these Palladium Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles & Other Strangeness RPGs, which featured some swell art from Kevin Eastman, Peter Laird and Jim Lawson. Here’s a nice, long post about those source books.


LurkerWithout said...

"The Infinite" not "The Invincible". I think Kirkman's involvement has got you confused on that one. And $3.99 is pretty standard for an IDW book...

As for the skull, its IN the cat. And one in the girl. And hopefully in Kull as well. See LOTS of skulls...

matthew. said...

I think it's weird that it appears they're writing Ghostbusters like a regular comic. Isn't it supposed to be funny?

Andrei said...

Isn't the Ghostbusters cover an homage to artwork from a Danzig album?

Andrei said...

Sorry, it's Queen not Danzig. It's like the cover of their album,Queen II.

Aki Alaraatikka said...

I think that the woman in that cover is wearing artificial tiger fur bikinis. Or maybe the tiger is thinking: Hmh. I smell the fur of one of my lost cubs on that woman. Maybe I should eat her...