Tēnā koutou, folks!
Hayley’s off this week representing Australia in her true passion of trap shooting, so it’s Andrew here to take you through the week’s fairly modest amount of releases with as little muss and fuss as possible. Hold onto your flags, ‘cause here we go!
If you didn’t make it down for last Friday’s launch event for Tom Humberstone’s new comic Ellipsis, you missed out on a great night. Happily, we’ve still got copies of issue one available for sale, complete with a lovely tip-in plate. The first in a series of six linked one-shots, it’s a beautifully produced contemplation of transit. Well worth checking out, and you can scope a preview here.
Dave McKean fans have reason to celebrate this week with the release of two more of his small travel sketchbooks. Postcards from Perugia & Postcards from Bilbao both feature studies of the respective cities in brush, pen & pencil. They’re lovely little snapshots of the cities, their architecture and people. As with the other books in the series which we still have in stock, our copies are all signed by the man himself.
Fantagraphics have brought together some of the most important LGBT comics of the last forty years in the hardcover collection No Straight Lines: Four Decades of Queer Comics, edited by Prism Comics board member Justin Hall. In addition to such luminaries as Alison Bechdel, Howard Cruse and Ralf Koenig, the book spotlights work by a number of talented creators who have never received exposure outside of queer publications. Fantagraphics have one of those nifty flick-through vids here.
Among the many welcome returns of characters in Dark Horse Presents have been new stories featuring the eponymous Beasts of Burden, now collected into this week’s Neighbourhood Watch one-shot. If you’re unfamiliar with the series, the concept is as follows: a group of canine pets, with the odd feline, are tasked with the protection of their small US town against the forces of the supernatural: ghosts, witches, zombies and so forth. Kind of a pet BPRD. Written by Evan Dorkin and painted by Jill Thompson, it’s a great series that you can really jump in anywhere on. Give it a try.
There’s a review over here.
Matt Fraction and David Aja last worked together (along with Ed Brubaker) on the excellent Immortal Iron Fist, so I’m very curious to see what they do with Hawkeye #1. It’s the first issue of an ongoing solo series for Spider-Woman’s main squeeze, with some sidekicking by ex-Young Avenger Kate Bishop. It certainly looks nice, anyway, as can be seen in this preview over at CBR.
Animal Man #12 & Swamp Thing #12 both hit the streets this week, and together they form the prelude to the charmingly named “Rotworld” crossover. From here until their respective 17th issues, the titles are crossing over into one epic story, with Buddy Baker (The Red) & Alec Holland (The Green) teaming up against the forces of The Rot. For all you folks with a standing order for either title, we’ll be popping both titles aside for you throughout so you don’t miss out.
Any week that brings a new issue of Godland is a good week. Joe Casey & Tom Scioli’s cosmic saga is nearing the end now with the penultimate #36, so it might not feel like a great jumping on point for you, but maybe the official blurb can change your mind:
“GOTTERDAMMERAGNAHABHARATA The universe performs the ultimate act of self-love, so make sure you’re there to rub one out with Adam Archer and the rest of his cosmic crew! You got questions? This issue’s got all the answers!”
Cue the twitch of a thousand spam filters. But seriously, fans of wigged out madness, get on board.
The Fishing Trip HC is the third in a series of charming wordless children’s books by French writer & illustrator Béatrice Rodriguez. With a cast of recurring characters – Fox, Chicken, Rooster, Rabbit & Bear – they’re short but sweet adventure stories of friendship, loyalty, love and heartbreak. The first two – The Chicken Thief (my favourite) and The Treasure Thief – are both still available in the kid’s section. Highly recommended, whatever your age.
Time is against us, my friends! We’re gonna have to wrap this up, BULLET POINT STYLE!
Neal Adams fans who were left for a thirst for more after the brilliantly crazy Batman The Odyssey can breathe easy as Adams (with the assistance of Christos Gage) returns to the world that he made his name on. First X-Men #1 is a “secret history” styled affair, with Wolverine & Sabretooth featured prominently. CBR have a preview here.
As a part of Spidey’s 50th anniversary celebrations, Marvel are resurrecting the Spider-Man titles of old for special one-off .1 issues. The first of these is Peter Parker Spider-Man #156.1, by Roger Stern (my favourite Spider-Man writer, as it goes) and Robert De La Torre.
Blade of the Immortal vol 25 is out this week, and fans of the series won’t be disappointed. More magical samurai action in Hiroaki Samurai’s elegant style. Dark Horse have a preview here.
Interesting looking title from Image this week: Harvest #1 is about a doctor trying to escape a murky world of human organ harvesting, and is advertised with the unfortunate blurb “If Dexter, ER and 100 Bullets had a three-way and that mind blowing tryst somehow resulted in a kid, that kid would read HARVEST.” Quite. Certainly looks nice, though. Interview and some page previews here.
This weeks sees the final issue of Jeff Smith’s latest series, Rasl #15, and seemingly serialised comics by the man, full stop, if interviews are to be believed.
Speaking of final issues, iZombie #28 wraps up Chris Roberson & Mike Allred’s fun supernatural soap opera, which will be missed around these parts.
Grant Morrison has recently announced he’s stepping back from superheroes for a while once his current arcs of Action Comics & Batman Incorporated and the upcoming limited series Multiversity are done. This week sees the first hardcover of that Action Comics run hit the shelves. Also, if you’ve not seen it, I’d highly recommend Grant Morrison: Talking With Gods, a documentary about the man. It’s a nicely humanising portrait of a man too many people write off as “weird, psychotropic drug guy”.
Hitman Vol 7 Closing Time is the final volume in the re-released editions of the classic Garth Ennis / John McCrea series. Not only does it collect the final story arc, but for the first time it collects together all of the crossover books that were done: Hitman/Lobo, JLA/Hitman and the Superman 80 Page Giant.
And that’s about that for the comics! Don’t forget we’ve got the launch party for the new issue of Richard Cowdry’s excellent anthology The Comix Reader coming up on the 3rd August, 7pm-9pm. All are welcome for free booze and comic-y company! We’ve got one of them thar Facebook events set up over here.
Also, not too long left for the Sean Phillips Fatale exhibition adorning our walls. It’s all for sale, so be sure to pop in and see if there’s anything you like, or alternatively check out the gallery online.
Okeydoke, that’s me done. Hayley’s back next week, no doubt with a pocket full of buckshot and a fistful of gold!
E noho rā, you crazy kids!