Friday, August 30, 2019

DC's November previews reviewed

written by SEAN MURPHY
cover by SEAN MURPHY
The world of Batman: White Knight expands with this standalone tale! On the night of Bruce Wayne’s traumatic birth, Victor Fries must intervene to save the lives of Martha Wayne and the future Batman. As the evening unfolds, Victor distracts Thomas with the incredible tale of his own father figures—one a Nazi, the other a Jew—and their complex connection to Wayne Laboratories. As the Third Reich roars into power, the deep friendship and working relationship between the Baron von Fries and his research partner, Jacob Smithstein, is in crisis. Ordered by Himmler to speed development of their cryotechnology in service of world domination, Smithstein is forced to go into hiding and compromise his moral code in order to save his wife and infant daughter, Nora, from persecution and certain death. When the S.S. ramps up surveillance over the project, young Victor begins to question his father’s true allegiance. Both families are driven toward an impossible choice and a sinister standoff, and Victor makes a pact with Smithstein that will ripple through generations.
ONE-SHOT | ON SALE 11.20.19
$5.99 US | 56 PAGES

People seem to really like Sean Murphy's Batman: White Knight comics, so expanding the "universe" of the series seems like a pretty smart move by DC. And Klaus Janson is a great comics artist, so I have no doubt this will end up being some pretty good Elseworlds Batman.

I never actually got around to reviewing Murphy's original White Knight series, which sat on my To Review pile for months and months before I finally gave up on ever doing so. My difficulty came in trying to put into words the thing I didn't quite like about it, or didn't quite feel comfortable with. It was a feeling I couldn't quite articulate, but I guess I can at least try briefly (and likely fail) here. After all, this particular special highlights one of the odd departures from "regular" Batman comics and lore that can be seen randomly throughout White Knight: Mister Freeze is here several generations older than Batman/Bruce Wayne, a World War II-era scientist who later came to Gotham and entered into a strange working relationship with Dr. Thomas Wayne that involved a giant freeze ray and plans to defend Gotham City.

White Knight doesn't have the expected point of departure of other superhero Imaginary Stories, What Ifs and Elseworlds; it's not a Batman story with a dramatic shift of venue or genre, nor a amalgam of Batman with another comics or literary figure, nor an exploration of how different Batman and his world might be if something different had happened at some point in his career. Because of that, it seems to lack a premise, a reason to exist at all...despite the fact that it was sold on a premise, that being an inversion of the Batman/Joker dynamic, where Batman is the villain and the Joker is the hero (sort of).

But it's more than just that, as Murphy made so many changes that don't necessarily have a theme or pattern. There's the stuff with Freeze. There's the incredibly different way in which Robin Jason Todd's career ended at the hands of The Joker, and that he was apparently the last Robin (so no Tim Drake or Damian Wayne, although Duke Thomas appears as a character in a different role). Oh, and this Joker had a well-known secret identity, Jack Napier. And he maybe never really ever actually killed anyone after all. And Harley Quinn came into his life earlier, sometime before Todd became the second and last Robin. And there are actually two Harleys (the original one that resembled the one from Batman: The Animated Series, and a later, replacement one who resembled the one from the Batman: Arkham video games and the Suicide Squad movie).

Unlike most of the previous alternate Batman stories, then, what Murphy did was offer a sort of idiosyncratic "remix" of the Batman story, reinventing it to suit his vision, picking and choosing elements from past iterations to honor, ignore or reshape. It is akin to what one sees in virtually any superhero movie ever made, and plenty of comics (Marvel's entire, millennial Ultimate line, for example, or even Tom Scioli's Transformers Vs. G.I. Joe, to choose one of my favorite comics). That's why I'm not sure why it bothered me here and not in so many other places. I suspect it is because Murphy did have a premise of sorts to his original series, the bit with Joker going sane and becoming a heroic figure in opposition to Batman, who has slowly been going over the edge, although it feels quite watered down because of how much rejiggering Murphy did to the source material before he hit the starting point of his series and, without spoiling it too much, how the Joker Is Good Now, Batman Is Bad Now throughline is sabotaged (Maybe those characters are so powerful at this point, it's nigh impossible to force them into opposite roles for too long...?)

Anyway, I don't think that aspect of the book made it a bad book or anything, nor did it necessarily ruin it. I just felt somewhat uncomfortable with it, and despite several pretty clever ideas, I never really saw what so many other people seemed to see in it. It was a pretty good Batman comic with incredible art, but it was hardly a great Batman comic.

Anyway, there's now a sequel centering around the Azrael character and, I guess, a one-shot starring Freeze with art by Klaus Janson.

(By the way, "White Knight" would have been a better codename for Duke Thomas than "The Signal," although it would necessitate changing the color of his costume.)

Collected in book form for the first time! Polish pilot Janos Prohaska—better known as Blackhawk—is on American soil and in trouble. Accused of Communist leanings, he stumbles across a plot to overthrow the U.S. government and bomb New York City concocted by former Nazis out for revenge. Collects Blackhawk: Blood & Iron #1-3, plus stories from Action Comics Weekly #601-608, #615-622, and #628-635 and Secret Origins #45.
ON SALE 12.11.19
$49.99 US | 384 PAGES
FC | ISBN: 978-1-779500779

I've read a handful of those Action Comics Weekly stories, and they were well-made and a lot of fun. And there is a lot of talent involved in this, including Chaykin before he got so...Chaykin-y. I find this quite tempting, although the $49.99 price tag will probably keep me from adding it to my own personal library.

Includes 24 pages of new stories plus classic reprints!
ON SALE 12.18.19
$4.99 US | FC | 96 PAGES | DC

Includes 32 pages of new stories plus classic reprints!
ON SALE 12.11.19
$4.99 US | FC | 96 PAGES | DC

As with last month, there's another round of bargain-priced, mostly-reprint giants with new material. These are the two I am most curious about, and will likely order for myself, despite the lack of detail. The Crisis one is interesting because, on the one hand, COIE is just a single limited series, so a reprint of 60-some pages of it seems strange, but then, there's all those contemporary COIE tie-ins that reprints could be pulled from, and God knows how many revisits of the events of series from later anthologies and suchlike, and that's only if DC is confining the book to the original Crisis, and not any of the semi-official sequels like Infinite Crisis and the like.

Also, I'm curious about the new stories set in or around the mid-1980s crossover event.

It's far easier to imagine the contents of the War book; at least, I am assuming it will collect DC's older war comics, with the war in question being WWII and maybe some WWI (so they can get some Enemy Ace in there. I read a couple hundred pages worth of those comics via the Showcase Presents collections, and they were all a blast. Chances are the contents of this book will duplicate that, but hey, it's only $5, so it's worth the risk of rereading a few great comics I've already read. And these will be in color, which I assume won't do the line art any favors, but we'll see.

And, again, I'm curious about the new stories: Who made them, whether classic DC war characters are being used and/or which wars they will be set in.

So I guess that's what Nora Fries looks like when she's not in a cryogenic coma...? Huh. I never imagined the chainsaw, to be honest.

art and cover by VICTORIA YING
Eleven-year-old Diana leads an idyllic life on the island of Themyscira. Cut off from the rest of the world, she’s beginning to feel a little alone. Though she has a loving mother and many “aunties,” she is an only child. In fact, she’s the only child on the entire island!
After an escapade goes wrong, Diana gets in trouble for not living up to the Amazonian standard. She just can’t seem to measure up no matter what she does. Every other person on the island is an adult proficient in their trade and mighty in body, while she is gangly, sometimes clumsy, and not particularly good at anything. She’s not Wonder Woman...yet, anyway. What Diana needs is a friend; someone her own age whom she can talk to. But when she decides to take matters into her own hands, she encounters the unexpected!
From New York Times bestselling authors Shannon Hale (Princess Academy) and Dean Hale and artist Victoria Ying comes a heartfelt story about making mistakes, learning the hard way, and growing up to become a hero.
ON SALE 01.01.20
$9.99 US | 5.5” x 8”

So this is a Wonder Girl graphic novel then, huh? Hopefully it's quite successful, and it will encourage DC to do one set 6-9 years earlier, when she was still Wonder Tot.

I imagine this one should be good, as the Hales aren't just well-known prose writers, but also have some quite solid comics-scripting work to their names.

stories and art by VARIOUS
In celebration of its 85th anniversary, DC Comics reprints for the very first time its first-ever published comic book, New Fun #1, the comic that transformed the fledgling industry by being the first ongoing title made up of new stories instead of reprints of newspaper comic strips. First published in 1935, this landmark comic book carried a diverse set of original content features cowboys, spies, detectives, funny animals, space explorers, soldiers of fortune and more, including features that were written by Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson, the founder of the company that would become DC Comics. This tabloid-size, black-and-white comic is reprinted as a commemorative hardcover and will include essays by comics historian Roy Thomas and Nicky Wheeler-Nicholson, grand-daughter of Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson, and more. Collects New Fun #1.
ON SALE 01.22.20
$19.99 US | 48 PAGES
B&W | 10.5” X 15.125”
ISBN: 978-1-779501196

Curiosity makes me want this, but $20 for 48 pages makes me second-guess myself. Hopefully DC will send me a review copy. This is an interesting comic to reprint in 2019, though, as New Fun #1 is a comic book anyone who has ever read any history of comics has read about, but relatively few if any of us have actually read the comic itself.

written by N.K. JEMISIN
art and cover by JAMAL CAMPBELL
N.K. Jemisin, the acclaimed, award-winning author of The Broken Earth and Inheritance science fiction trilogies, makes her comic book debut with bestselling Naomi artist Jamal Campbell as they thrust you into a stunning sci-fi murder mystery on the other side of the universe! For the past six months, newly chosen Green Lantern Sojourner “Jo” Mullein has been protecting the City Enduring, a massive metropolis of 20 billion people. The city has maintained peace for over 500 years by stripping its citizens of their ability to feel. As a result, violent crime is virtually unheard of, and murder is nonexistent. But that’s all about to change in this new maxiseries that gives a DC Young Animal spin to the legacy of the Green Lanterns!
ON SALE 11.13.19
$3.99 US |1 OF 12 |32 PAGES

Well this is intriguing; a Green Lantern comic that doesn't even bill itself as such in the title. It also seems to be a pretty straightforward science fiction take on the franchise, leaning hard into that aspect. Most intriguing of all, of course, is that it's a brand-new GL from a creator brand-new to comics. Comics always benefits from new blood--that of creators and characters alikeand the Green Lantern concept more than most. Think how boring the history of Green Lantern would be without John Stewart, Guy Gardner, Kyle Rayner, Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz...

The DC geek in me wonders if Sojourner Mullein is an Earthling or not, given how many Earth GLs there are, and whether or not this series is standalone or will be set in the DC Universe shared-setting or not. It's apparently both a "Black Label" book and a "Young Animal" book, and I'm still not entirely sure if those labels mean "not in the DC Universe" or not. So far, my sense is that they simply mean "Maybe in the DCU"...

That's Guillem March's variant cover for The Flash #83, and it's great. Has anyone ever drawn a Flash-punching-the-reader-repeatedly cover before? It seems like a kind of obvious idea once you see it, but I don't recall ever seeing a similar cover image.

cover by NEAL ADAMS
In this award-winning tale from 1971, Green Arrow discovers that his former sidekick, Roy Harper, is hooked on heroin! Plus, Sinestro tries to exert mental control over Hal Jordan in a story originally published in Green Lantern #11!
ON SALE 11.20.19
$3.99 US | 48 PAGES

I love this cover so much. It remains one of my favorite covers of all time. I've read the story repeatedly, but I think I might still order this, just to have a book with that cover on it.

This cover, by the way, inspired one of The Red Bee's pitches for a comic book series starring The Red Bee.
If you haven't been reading EDILW for (yikes!) 12 years now, you can click here for The Red Bee's guest-post, featuring terrible art and even worse lettering.

cover by LIAM SHARP
variant cover by DARICK ROBERTSON
What has Hal Jordan done? Following the catastrophic events of The Green Lantern #12, no Green Lanterns can be found patrolling their space sectors...and not a single power ring lights the darkness. Across the universe, once-familiar faces now wear a different uniform and enforce a new type of galactic law. The Green Lantern Corps is dead—long live the Blackstars! Who are they? What are they? Answers will be revealed as the unstoppable Blackstars set their sights on the demons of Ysmault, Mongul...and a tiny, backwater planet called Earth. A dangerous new chapter of the Green Lantern mythology starts now!
ON SALE 11.06.19
$3.99 US |1 OF 3 |32 PAGES

Hal Jordan leading a new version of the Blackstars is something I ever would have expected to read, particularly in a comic scripted by Grant Morrison, who used to seem to have some pretty strong opinions about the superiority of DC's sturdy Silver Age iterations of characters rather than whatever the hell his contemporaries were doing to the original Justice Leaguers and their legacies in their books. Of course, that's what makes it so interesting.

I've only read the first issue of The Green Lantern so far, as I've been waiting for the trade--not the hardcover, but the actual trade paperback--so I'm way behind on the goings-on of Hal Jordan and what Morrison and Liam Sharp have been doing to him.

This makes me curious as to what Guy, Kyle and Simon are up to, though; I know John is in the Justice League and Jessica in the space team of Leaguers starring in Justice League Odyssey; I assume they will be unaffected.

written by MINH LÊ
art and cover by ANDIE TONG
Twelve-year-old Tai Pham lives in the apartment above his grandmother’s store, where his bedroom is crammed with sketchpads and comic books. But not even his most imaginative drawings could compare to the colorful adventure he’s about to embark on.
When Tai inherits his grandmother’s jade ring, he soon finds out it’s more than it appears. Suddenly he’s being inducted into a group of space cops known as the Green Lanterns. Meanwhile, his neighborhood is being overrun by some racist bullies, and every time he puts pen to paper, he’s forced to realize that he might not be creative enough or strong enough to uphold the legacy of his ba.
Now Tai must decide what kind of hero he wants to be: Will he learn to soar above his insecurities, or will the past keep him grounded?
From award-winning author Minh Lê (Drawn Together) and artist Andie Tong comes the tale of a brand-new hero, the latest in the Green Lantern lineage!
ON SALE 01.15.20
$9.99 US | 5.5” x 8”

Oh hey, another new Green Lantern! Again, this one stars in a book marked "DC Graphic Novels For Kids" (and was presumably going to be a DC Zoom book before the publisher nixed that particular imprint's branding), so I'm not sure if this new pre-teen GL "counts" or not. If so, the Teen Lantern in Young Justice might want to watch her back...

written by PAUL DINI, DEVIN GRAYSON, GREG RUCKA, and others
Relive key stories of the Birds of Prey—Black Canary, Huntress, Renee Montoya, and Cassandra Cain, not to mention Harley Quinn—along with the deadly Black Mask! This new title collects Detective Comics #831, Nightwing/Huntress #2, Gotham Central #6, Batman #567, Catwoman #16 (2002 series) and a story from Showcase ’96 #3.
ON SALE 12.11.19
$12.99 US | 144 PAGES
FC | ISBN: 978-1-4012-9483-0

This is a trade paperback collecting a random assortment of old Batman comics featuring the random assemblage of characters appearing in the upcoming Birds of Prey movie, which is obviously going to be very, very different than any previous Birds of Prey comic (Like, of all the characters mentioned in the solicitation, only two of them were ever actually on a Birds of Prey team).

So what do we have here? Showcase '96 #3 featured a Birds of Prey story by Jordan Gorfinkel, penciler artist Jennifer Graves (whose work I loved, and yet was far too rare back then) and inker Stan Woch, in which Lois Lane joins Black Canary in her BOP field work; Nightwing/Huntress #2 is part of a four-part miniseries by Devin Grayson, Greg Land (back when he used to draw comics) and Bill Sienkiewicz in which the two vigilantes team-up and hookup, something of an event at the time given Huntress' outsider status among the rest of the Bats; Batman #567 is a 1999 (that's during "No Man's Land") comic by Kelly Puckett, Damion Scott and John Floyd starring new Batgirl Cassandra Cain; Gotham Central #6 is the 2003 first chapter of Greg Rucka and Michael Lark's "Half A Life" story line in which Renee Montoya comes out; Catwoman #16 is an Ed Brubaker and Cameron Stewart issue from the same year, relevant because it features Selena and The Black Mask; and, finally, 'Tec #831 is a 2007 Harley Quinn issue by Paul Dini, Don Kramer and Wayne Faucher (with a nice black-and-white Simone Bianchi cover) which features the lame-o Ventriloquist II.

Those aren't the stories I would have chosen to introduce those particular characters, and one of the odd aspects of them is that almost all of them are simply chapters of bigger, longer storiesalthough given that all of them have been collected somewhere or other, I guess one could see this as a sort of starting-point trade, pointing readers to other trade collections. I can't recommend the Batgirl trades featuring the work of Puckett strongly enough; and "Half A Life," like the rest of Gotham Central, is pretty much must-read. That 2002-launched Catwoman series was by far the best Catwoman ongoing series, too, of the...four or so she's had to date.

I'm not entirely sure, but I think there might be actual Birds of Prey issues featuring most of these characters, although I'm not certain about Harley Quinn and Black Mask (statistically, though, it seems like issues of BOP featuring those fairly common Batman villains must exist.

written by TIM SEELEY
cover by INHYUK LEE
variant cover by DAN FRAGA
The scourge of Anti-Eternia is unleashed on the Multiverse! Blazing a trail across the dimensions, he’s devastating each version of Eternia and stealing its power. Now it’s up to a ragtag team of surviving He-Men to recruit the one man in existence who might save them: Prince Keldor, the man who would be Skeletor! This all-new miniseries features the most iconic eras and beloved takes on the Masters of the Universe!
ON SALE 11.20.19
$3.99 US |1 OF 6 |32 PAGES

This solicit, like few others, has caused me to reevaluate my life, and wonder where the five-year-old playing with Masters of The Universe toys who wanted to grow up to be a writer isn't writing a comic series like this, but is instead merely a semi-professional comic book critic, full-time library clerk, extremely part-time comics blogger and so forth...?

This is an excellent title for a comic book series, and an excellent premise, even if it is (quite obviously) quite derivative. If it's a DC comic, that sort of derivation's not so bad (I similarly wish someone would do a Scooby-Doo comic along these lines some day). There are two ways to go with this, and Seeley seems to be going the Infinite Eternia's path (the other, weirder one might be to concentrate on the DC Multiverse, and we'd see the He-Men of Earth-3, Earth-X, etc).

I heartily hope the various He-Men include one from the 1983 Filmation cartoon that is hampered by limited and repetitive movement, who is only ever drawn in, like, five different poses, and regularly spouts morals as if talking directly to children watching his adventures at home. And the He-Man from the very first "minicomics" (that were actually mini illustrated storybooks) by Don Glut and Alfredo Alcala, which offer a different and somewhat strange He-Man mythology than the one that would quickly develop and be the focus of the cartoon series and the toyline thereafter (He-Man not having a secret identity, his harness giving him super-strength, Castle Grayskull being a place hero and villain alike could enter, The Sorceress looking like a green-skinned Teela in her full snake armor, etc). These are collected in Dark Horse's excellent He-Man and The Masters of The Universe Mini-Comic Collection, if you've never encountered them (and, um, didn't get them with your Beast-Man, He-Man, Skeletor and Zodiac action figures one Christmas and happened to save them for the next 35+ years).

Given how all of the He-Man comics pretty much since those that came packaged with the toys have ranged from not-that-great to godawful to damn near unreadable, I don't exactly have high hopes for this, although I love the premise enough that I won't be able to ignore it. Seeley's a pretty good comics writer, and I've liked the vast majority of the stuff of his I've readand loved some of itso hopefully this turns out to be as awesome as a He-Man comic should be. (And then maybe Seeley can go back and re-write a Justice League vs. Masters of the Universe comic, because the one DC published was sooooo terrible!)

written by SINA GRACE
Billy Batson is a good kid. He helps his friends, loves his family, and tries to do the right thing. But Billy is about to have a run-in with the most dangerous serial killer in existence, and the Batman Who Laughs wants Billy to be bad. Spinning out of the events of Batman/Superman and “Year of the Villain,” it’s the tale of a hero whose soul has been turned black, and who has something to prove to the old guard. Buckle in for Shazam’s journey to punch a bunch of so-called “gods” in the face and show the establishment exactly what the future looks like...
ON SALE 11.06.19
$3.99 US | 32 PAGES FC|DC

Okay, so Dark Knights: Metal begat The Batman Who Laughs (who previously appeared in one of those already-forgotten Dark Matter/New Age of DC Heroes series and some issues of Justice League) which then begat Batman/Superman #1. I just read the Batman Who Laughs collection, which was surprisingly strong (review soon-ish, I hope) and then I read Batman/Superman #1 and that was...well, it wasn't for me.

It was on page two where it began to lose me, during a two-panel sequence in which we are told for the millionth time about Batman's parents dying in an alley (complete with bloody pearls!) and Superman's world blowing up.
And by the top of the third page, it lost me completely:
Not only is this kind of gross and horrifying, but do you know how many times I have seen images of the Justice League killed at this point? How often I've seen Wonder Woman strangled by her own lasso, and Plastic Man and/or Martian Manhunter stretched out like chewing gum...? So it is both gruesome and derivative to the point of boring. No thank you, DC. (By the way, this is just rated "T for Teen," which translates to "Appropriate for readers age 12 and older. May contain mild violence, language and/or suggestive themes." The next one up is "T+...appropriate for readers age 15 and older. May contain moderate violence, mild profanity, graphic imagery and/or suggestive themes." That's the rating assigned to Justice League, despite the fact that I've yet to read an issue of that in which, like, a random rib cage is just lying around the middle of the floor at JLA HQ.)

(On the plus side,, David Marquez's art is pretty great throughout, and while I was fully expecting to see the "Infected" Captain Marvel Shazam in this series, I was still surprised with how he showed up, given what writer Joshua Williamson did to Billy Batson to render him unrecognizable).

Anyway, this follows up on the plot from Batman Who Laughs, in which the title villain and his henchman attempt to infect all of Gotham City with a serum that will turn everyone into BLM-like maniacs, I think. Apparently, he got to Captain Marvel Shazam and The Blue Beetle Jaime Reyes (the latter has a one-shot solicited for November as well, The Infected: The Scarab; he is wearing a loincloth in his redesign too. I guess loincloths are...evil...?). I didn't realize until I saw this solicit though that they were using the name "King Shazam"; that was one of the names that Freddie Freeman suggested for his superhero codename in the original Geoff Johns/Gary Frank "Shazam" comic that inspired the movie. So I guess Freddie's not using that. Have the Shazam family gotten individual superhero codenames yet?

written by SI SPURRIER
John Constantine is back in London, back to his old tricks—and just in time, as things have become very dark indeed in his old stomping grounds. A small-time gang lord has found himself dealing with a big-time outbreak of supernatural weirdness...and without any allies to call on and nothing left to call his own, John doesn’t have much choice about taking a paycheck from one of London’s worst, or accepting the help of one of the gang lord’s would-be foot soldiers. But what should be an open-and-shut exorcism turns out to be nothing but...and the author of this madness may just be getting started on their terrible masterpiece!
The original Constantine is back in this series from Si Spurrier (The Dreaming) and Aaron Campbell (Infidel), with nothing to his name but decades of bad memories and an unearned second chance. How, exactly, will he squander it? There’s only one way to find out...
ON SALE 11.27.19
$3.99 US | 32 PAGES

Just out of curiosity, how many times has DC re-launched a John Constanine title since the original Hellblazer was cancelled in 2013 or so. I want to say this is the fourth #1 since then, and it's a good sign of the diminishing returns of reboots and renumberings. Constantine's first series, Hellblazer, lasted for 25 years, after all.

art and cover by FRANCIS MANAPUL
How powerful is too powerful? Lex Luthor has assembled everything he needs to complete his plan of turning the world toward doom, including reviving the ancient goddess Perpetua and restoring her powers. But can he keep Perpetua from dragging the DC Universe into the abyss alongside the rest of the Multiverse? This is a question that hero and villain alike must ask, as the epic battle between the Justice League and the Legion of Doom across space and time comes crashing together. Everything that happens here sets the stage for the senses-shattering finale of the Justice/Doom War—and the fate of all existence hangs in the balance!
ON SALE 11.20.19
$3.99 US | 32 PAGES

I can't tell you how eager I am for Snyder and company to finish up this years-long Justice/Doom War story line and finally get around to telling a second Justice League story. That said, this has been going on so longsince the start of the series, or actually longer if you count No Justice and Metalthat I'm beginning to wonder if there even is a second story, or if Snyder's run will consist completely of what is essentially the longest "Crisis" in DC comics history. How's that for decompression!

art and cover by RYAN SOOK
Inspired by the acts of and lessons learned from the greatest heroes of all time, the Legion of Super-Heroes have gathered together to stop a galaxy from repeating its past mistakes. The greatest lineup of heroes in comic book history returns with new, fresh, and reader-friendly stories!

Eisner Award-winning writer Brian Michael Bendis reteams with master artist Ryan Sook (Action Comics) for one of the most ambitious mainstream comic books ever created! Why have the Legion of Super-Heroes broken the cardinal rule of the United Planets and inducted Jon Kent, a.k.a. Superboy, into the Legion? What are they hiding? And what does it have to do with Aquaman’s long-lost trident?
ON SALE 11.06.19
$3.99 US | 32 PAGES

I don't think I realized that the Superboy who was appearing in the upcoming LOSH was going to be Superman and Lois' son Jonathan, and not some past version of the "real" Superman. I...don't love that idea at all, although I guess it will remain to be seen if this means he's going to live in the future, and will no longer be part of the present, where I found him to be a pretty welcome addition to the DCU (especially as a foil to Robin Damian Wayne). (Hmmm...crazy idea, but would shunting duplicate characters from the present to co-star in a LOSH title be a better fate for characters like Tim Drake or Duke Thomas or Cassandra Cain, where they could be the Robin or Batgirl of the 21st Century? Might that be less depressing then having cool characters with lame costumes and lame codenames hanging around crowding up the books they appear in?)

I'm ridiculously far behind Bendis' Superman run, though. I blame DC for going to hardcover with those collections before trade paperback.

I also don't much care for Jon's new costume, but I suppose it might be something I'll get used to upon actually reading some comics in which it appears.

written by TIM SEELEY
cover by LEE WEEKS
What could be blacker than the Blackest Night? From the pages of Dark Nights: Metal comes a Dark Multiverse retelling of the Green Lantern event that changed the DC Universe forever...only this time, the Black Lanterns win! Now, 23 days after the apocalypse, witness the rise of Sinestro as the Limbo Lantern! Trapped between life and death as a White and Black Lantern, Sinestro seeks to save the universe—or end his miserable life—once and for all! Joined by Dove, Lobo, and Mister Miracle, the last living beings in the universe will put everything on the line to give their world one final chance.
ON SALE 11.13.19
$5.99 US | 48 PAGES

Well, the solicitation copy beat me to it. I was going to say how could you possibly do a "dark" version of a comic as dark as Blackest Night. The fact that Kyle Hotz is drawing this seems worth noting; that guy is a great artist, and excels at drawing scary shit.

written by JAMES TYNION IV
cover by LEE WEEKS
DC’s mega-event “Infinite Crisis” saw the destruction of the Trinity, the rise of Alexander Luthor and Superboy-Prime, and the rebirth of the Multiverse...but it all started with Ted Kord, the Blue Beetle, who saw it all coming and died with secrets that could’ve saved the world. But...things happened differently in the Dark Multiverse! Not only does Blue Beetle survive— he thrives! And after killing Maxwell Lord himself, Ted sets off a chain of events that irreversibly alters the lives of the Justice League and his best friend, Booster Gold. In trying to prevent a crisis, Blue Beetle becomes the Crisis...and the Dark Multiverse will never be the same.
ON SALE 11.27.19
$5.99 US | 48 PAGES

Again, how do you get darker than Infinite Crisis...? Is Superboy-Prime going to punch the heads off of all the Teen Titans...?

Now please join me in saying a prayer that DC doesn't solicit a Tales From The Dark Multiverse: Identity Crisis next month...

art and cover by JOHN TIMMS
Welcome, Naomi! Wonder Comics’ brightest shining star comes to Young Justice! She’s ready to join this team of young heroes who have seen it all—and you’ll want to be here to watch the sparks fly for the very first time. All this, plus the true story of Jinny Hex.
ON SALE 11.06.19
$3.99 US | 32 PAGES

Well, I'm curious as hell about what Best Robin Tim Drake's new superhero name is going to be. With most all possible bird-related names already used (too bad Harper Row took Bluebird, just to retire; I think a blue and black version of Tim's Robin costume might look pretty sharp), I obviously can't imagine what they are going to go with. I wonder if they might do something vague, and go in the Nightwing direction.

Redwing would be a possibility; the name was previously used by the red-winged lady in Team Titans, but I'm pretty sure she doesn't exist any more (And Nightwing was a name previously used by a Kryptonian-version of Batman in Kandor, so there's precedent of reusing an older, obsolete superhero's name for a former Robin looking to rebrand himself)."Redbird" would be a pretty good possibility too, I think...if Tim hadn't already used that name for his Robin-mobile.

Of course, his costume on that cover looks more maroon than red to me, so I guess we'll see. I hate it, but after his New 52 Red Robin costume, there's really nowhere to go but up...

1 comment:

Stantium said...

Your summation of White Knight is spot on. Part of the reason I struggled with it, even if I did enjoy it. And it's the exact same reason the Spider-Gwen book annoyed me for the entirety of its original run (that one also was pitched as a "What if x" concept and became an increasingly frustrating remix of elements from the entire Marvel Universe with some pretty consistently strong plotting and character writing).

Glad to see I'm not the only one that shared that little frustration.