Samurai Jack #1 (of 5) – Now you may remember this was a break out animation masterpiece for Cartoon Network back in the late 90’s, early 2000’s.  It was one of those shows that captivated audiences both young and old due to its style and story-telling, it was just a hell of a ride.  Anyway, except for a one-shot special done by DC well over a decade ago, ‘Jack’ has never had a comic presence, until now.  The savvy folks at IDW have picked up the license for 5 part mini-series which may finally answer Jack’s desire to return through time to his home…

 

 

 

Memory Collectors #1 (of 3) – From the cryptic creator known only as ‘menton3’ who does both the art and writing on this dark sounding mini-series, here is the actual blurb “Three jaded fetish models are unexpectedly thrown into a violent world and made to confront a horrible and unperceived truth: Hidden among us are entities that feed on the very thing we hold most sacred, our memories. No longer content with their lives as hunted cattle, they become the hunters.”  I could have done it no better justice than that!  So if you’re looking for something a bit different, this should fit the proverbial bill nicely.

 

 

Zombie War #1 (of 2) – And we can’t not have a zombie story can we?  Why this one? Well it’s by Turtles creator, Kevin Eastman and it’s a classic long before this generation’s Zombie love affair began.  IN fact, it’s about 20 years old and was a black and white masterpiece of its day.  But now it’s back, and its in flesh chomping, blood splurting colour!  For those of you who love, zombies or Kevin Eastman, or Heavy Meatal, or all three, this is for you J

 

 

 

The full listings for IDW’s October releases are here over at CBR.

 

 

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SANDMAN: OVERTURE #1 (OF 6) How could it be anything else? Sandman by Neil Gaiman is still a literary heavyweight that crushes almost all before it.  So why now?  And is Gaiman simply delivering this offering from the shed of milking or does it have purpose?  It’d be reasonable to suggest Gaiman doesn’t do anything for sheer monetary pursuit having established his well being back in the 90s.  For those of you who follow comics news you’ll know this deals with setting up just how Morpheus got himself in the predicament that opens Sandman #1.   However, this tale goes further than that, back into the history of the Endless – details that Gaiman  has stated he has carried for 25 years.  This will be a nice book end to the Sandman mythology, and  yes you will be able to have the choice of covers by either Dave McKean or interior artist J.H. Williams III (currently doing Batwoman).  Return to the world of the Sandman, which is Endless.

 

 

Justice League 3000 #1 Brought to you by Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis, this sees the heroes of the 52 universe today, in the future of 3000.  The how’s and why’s will be covered in this series.  If you like you’re ‘what if’s’ and anything Giffen  has done in the past (including the legendary ‘one punch’ Batman scene!)  This should be an enjoyable romp as while Giffen may not offer the edge of some of the new generation of writers, his ability for subtle humor, and plain zaniness can be unmissable when he’s at his best.

 

 

 

Damian: Son of Batman #1 (of 4) – Many people were surprised by the fate of Damian in Grant Morrison’s Batman Inc run.  So to understand it more, or at least to satisfy Damian’s fan base for more information, co-creator Andy Kubert is writing and drawing this new four part mini-series which will look at what set Damian on the road to wearing the red tunic and yellow cape.

 

 

 

Hinterkind #1 (New Vertigo series) – I like the sound of this, an interesting angle.  The Hinterkind are very real creatures, only thought to be myth and magic legend.  These creatures work for mother nature, who after a blight that has all but driver mankind from the face of the earth, serve to eradicate the remaining outposts of man.  Enter vertigo’s newest charge, Prosper Monday (a strong sounding character name don’t you think?) who sets out on a search for her Grandfather who has not returned.  Through her eyes we will discover no doubt what an unforgiving and foreign place the world has become.

 

 

And Forever Evil, the first 52 Universe wide event continues with ‘good’ on the back foot.  Check the three keystone JLA books, where the JLA is dead – so the question is what will fill that void? Of the special tie-in mini series, I’d suggest taking a look at Forever Evil: Arkham War – this time there is no Batman to stop the tide of the breakout.

Superman and Wonderwoman co-star in a new ongoing title.  This is a brave move (depending on how you view the whole new 52) whereby there is currently no Clark and Lois.  The forever simmering tension of Clark and Diana has finally been given a chance to shine and be explored in full in this brave new world.  And I suspect the cryptic wording in the solicitation for this title means a force of ‘super killing’ stature will be helping kick of this new ongoing title.

Check out the full DC listings here at CBR for the entire October offerings.  If nothing else, look forward to revisiting the Morpheus’ and the Endless clan…… pleasant dreams…..

So the July Previews is here, signalling we’re half way through the year.  What that also means is we’re into the US Summer season, and as always the gloves come off and the big releases will be coming thick and fast.  As always, we’ve been having a look at what gems lie within the pages of this month’s Previews, some obvious and some no so.  Don’t forget to check our facebook page to as that is a quick and effective way for us to update you of highlights as we come across them.

Full listings for the main publishers’ September releases can be found at CBR – DC Entertainment, Marvel, Image, IDW, Dark Horse

So without further ado, let’s on with it!

 

Dark Horse – The Star Wars (8 part mini-series – see Previews front cover for image!)  This is based on the original draft Lucas did which changed significantly in detail in terms of what ended up on the silver screen.  But the basic framework of the saga we now know so well is there.  This could be a lot of fun to see a tale that feels familiar but will have enough difference to be entertaining.  The draft has long been available for reading, but seeing it brought to live in the magic of four colour will be hard to pass up.

 

Archie – Afterlife with Archie – Archie meets Walking Dead?  Well, they met Kiss a couple of  years back, so perhaps they were comfortable with the living dead (joke! Kiss are great – and well alive J).  If you want to see what happens when Sabrina really screws up and Riverdale is plunged into a zombie apocalypse, then this is where you want to be.  Also, if you want to see good ol’ Archie and the crew really done over, then this will suit nicely too….

 

 

 

Dark Horse – Robocop Last Stand – As far as I can tell, this is nothing to do with the reboot, this is Frank Miller’s story of ol’ tin head’s final story.  Miller is writing this so I think it should be a solid yarn in respect to this franchise.

 

 

 

Dynamite – Kings Watch – Now here’s a ensemble team I didn’t expect but I’m not surprised as ‘team’ and/or ‘mash up’ stories have been popular now for some years and these characters are certainly not unfamiliar with each other so it makes sense.  The Phantom, Flash Gordon, Mandrake the Magician, all big names of their era and still have a large fan base to this day.   The tale as you’d expect is one of earth engulfing scale.  Monsters, real monsters are walking the earth on every continent and only this band of brothers can provide any hope.  I seriously suggest this could be one of the releases of the year.  Classic characters, classic Saturday matinée story but with a classy modern level of writing talent.

 

 

Hermes Press – Howard Chaykin. Honestly that’s it.  We all (I’m fairly sure) know who Commander Buck Rogers is, where he came from and his plight.  So why would you be interested in this beyond it being Buck?  Because Howard Chaykin is writing and doing the art.  If you’re not a Chaykin fan, then nothing to see here, move along.

 

 

IDW – Mars Attacks Judge Dredd – A couple of reasons to point out this crazy 4 part mini-series.  Firstly it’s Judged Dredd.  The story deals with the Mega-City Mafia and a boss that makes a power play thanks to an ‘unknown’ benefactor (who very likely is green and Martian like!)  Secondly, John McCrea is doing the art, his zany style will suit this well and he knows the Judge well so should be a treat.

 

 

 

DC – Forever Evil – Yep, this is the biggie, it hits all 52 related titles.  Geoff Johns  is the mad puppeteer behind this.  The Justice League is dead, and Villains rule the world.  Every title will have a Villain at the centre of September’s issues to support the Forever Evil series (it’s a  7 part series).  Some titles such as Batman, will have more than one issues that month given the size of Batman’s rouge gallery.  There’s so much to discuss, the easiest way is to follow the link to the full DC solicitation and check it all out!

 

 

Also worth checking out from DARK HORSE is Boozin’ and Brusin’ – the world’s first(?) superhero to derive his powers from alcohol, but he wants to go sober!  Also Criminal Macabre: The Eyes of Frankenstein – a four part mini-series where Frankenstein’s monster is going blind and seeks out the world’s foremost authority on the supernatural to help him regain its sight.  This is written by 30 days of Night creator, Steve Niles.

Orders close for the July Previews on Tuesday 23 July

The three other big players have some great stuff coming through.  I’ve highlight one new release from each of them for August but its worth taking a look through all their listings.  From Image, it’s great to see August sees the start of the second arc of Saga.  If you haven’t gotten on the Saga train yet, get me to get you the first trade paperback then hooks on to the monthly issue for the ride.  Ok, you can see the following releases for: Dark Horse here, Image here and IDW  here

 

HALO: INITIATION #1 (of 3) – Bucking the trend of those who thought Marvel (Disney) would be taking a licence (Star Wars) from Dark Horse, the ol’ nag has gone and taken Halo from Marvel!  Dark Horse is no stranger to licensed comics, in fact it’s what’s helped prop Dark Horse up while they’ve build up their other arms of their comic business.  And there licensed material has only gotten better over the years so i’d expect this to be as good, if not better, than the current Halo comic efforts to date.

 

THE SIDEKICK #1 (IMAGE) – Mmm, this could be really something.  First point to note, it’s written by J Michael Straczynski!  This looks to be his take on the darker side of ‘hero’ life, what are the true costs?   Though the cover looks  bit corny, along with the names (The Cowl and Flyboy!) but when the opening issue is going to deal with the assassination of The Cowl and how this derails Flyboy from public hero to public scorn and decent into darkness this could be a fresh angle on those in tights and capes

 

T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents #1 – IDW brings back another classic icon of super-hero history and gives the THUNDER Agents a new lease of life.  If you like the fresh approach IDW has been bring to some of their classic licenses, this will be worth a look.

Marvel, short in sweet for August, but don’t think nothing’s going on.  Infinity is the buzz for Marvel from August onwards.  Thanos is back and that means only bad news for the Marvel universe.  Aside from this Avenger$ themed event, I’d take a look at some quieter Marvel successes.  Deadpool continues to be a critical winner telling some very bizarre but entertaining stories, not quite of the normal Marvel mould.  Also, Mark Waid has been having a very popular run over the last couple of years on Daredevil, and his run on Indestructible Hulk appears to be worth catching hold of too.  Check out all the Marvel releases for August here at CBR.

 

INFINITY #1 (of 6) – This is it, the start of Marvel’s 2013 event, staring none other than… of course, Thanos!  Since he’ll be no doubt a major player in Avengers 2 (having made his cameo in the first movie) it makes sense they’ll be pushing his back to the forefront of the current Marvel story lines.  This storyline actually kicked off in the recent Marvel Free Comic Book Day effort, and doesn’t actually seem to bad at all.

 

 

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #6 – The second issue with Neil Gaiman co-writing it as his creation from waaaaaay back in Spawn #9 fights Gamora (nope, i’ve no idea who that is) which has me interested.  Well played Marvel.  There’s still time to re-order issue #5 too for July if you want to catch Gaiman’s first co-credited Guardian’s début.

A few tasty releases lined up for August.  DC’s new 52 still seems to be doing some interesting things but its a shame to see that they’ve lost James Robinson of Earth 2 (as of issue #17) in circumstances which appear to suggest there’s been a falling out of sorts.  Still, there’s plenty going on, and some good non-52 titles coming out as well as some very sweet looking merchandise in the action figure and statue areas from DC Direct.  Look out for the continuation of the Trinity War through the Justice League titles.

 

 

DC UNIVERSE VS. THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE #1 Yes, the cross-over none of us were expecting.  DC have crossed over with many universes, Marvel, Wildstorm, Milestone, Predator/Aliens, and many more.  But Skeletor’s back yard?  I wouldn’t have picked that.  Look, this won’t be high brow stuff, but there’s a couple of things.  I suspect it won’t sell huge volumes so will be a quick riser on the secondary market (that’s not investment advice, just a prediction).   Also, it is being written by Kieth Giffen, master of the quirky so it has a chance of actually being a bit of a sleeper in terms of quality given what it is.  DC seem to be playing He-Man and friends fairly straight for a matured audience so i don’t think this will be the He-Man many of us think of who watched this licence’s rise during the 80’s.

 

JLA EARTH TWO DELUXE EDITION HC – This classic from mad Grant Morrison artist Frank Quitely is one i’ve never got around to adding to my own bookshelf.  But with this new HC edition with some ‘extras’ i think the time is right to right that wrong.  For those new to this modern classic, it’s the JLA vs the anti-JLA with nasty pieces of work such as Owlman and Ultra Man.  Such good villains that are so familiar yet so deliciously evil makes for a good tale.  Don’t be a murtle the turtle like me, get this on your shelf asap!

 

 

DC ONE MILLION OMNIBUS HC – Another is the recently wave of DC’s omnibus’, this is an interesting collection.  This is arguably one of DC’s better ‘events’ of the late 90’s.  Again, it’s concept is from the wacky mind of Grant Morrisonbut a myriad of great talent work across all the many titles as for one month, each title jumped ahead to their one millionth issue.   Some classics came out of these, notably the Hitman issue.  It was a bold and slightly intimidating story to grasp but with all the relevant issues and tie-in issues in this one behemoth of a book, you’ll be able to take it all in.  And it’ll look kick-ass on your shelf.

 

 

TRILLIUM #1 – You’ll remember I’ve gone on about Jeff Limere this and Jeff Limere that (think Sweet Tooth, Deep Sea Welder, and Swamp Thing to name a few).  The reason is he’s a bloody good story teller and stands out and being someone who’s just a bit different and fresh in his approach.  Now comes this original 8 part mini-series which has a decidedly sci-fi flavour.  Two lovers, one scientist in the depth of space, the other an explorer – separated by time and space, add a dash of Inca, and the end of the universe and this should be a ripper.  A nice touch is the first issue is a flip book, each half dealing with one of the two main characters.

 

DC Direct – As mentioned recently on the Dunedin Comics facebook page, DC Direct is releasing a large range of awesome figures and statues.  Check out this awesome 50’s pin-up stylised Harley Quinn from their ‘bombshell’ range.  Really nice pieces and interpretation of their ‘fairer’ characters.   Also there are figure releases from the upcoming Batman Arkham Origins game (a prequel to Asylum and City) and more New 52 characters to adorn your desk and bookshelves.  Contact me for pricing.

Some great releases from these two publishers, something really for, well, anyone!  Check out the full listings here for Image and here for IDW.  Don’t forget IDW is now doing Season 10 of X-Files.  Orders for issue #1 are away this Wednesday.

The Rocketeer/The Spirit: Pulp Friction! #1 (of 4) – A cross-over to make pulp fans giddy, Mark Waid bring arguably two of the greatest pulp-genre characters together.  The Rocketeer is of course a modern ‘love letter’ of sorts to the pulp era, but his character is no less a valid story-telling mechanism for pulp inspired tales.  The Spirit of course is a genuine pulp-era heavy weight.  With Waid being let with these two together, this has the potential of a modern classic that you can get on board with.  Oh, the story?  A dead politician in Lss Angeles.  Betty (Rocketeer’s gal) finds the body, while the Spirit arrives in town to investigate.  This is chips and tomato sauce folks, it just works.

Wizards & Robots One-Shot – Wanna be ‘down’ with the youth of today?  Having this little one-shot in your collection will do that.  And why you might well ask.  Why is because it is written by Will-i-am, one of the creative forces from the band Black Eyed Peas.  But not to be outshone, the other collaborator on this project is futurist Brian David Johnson.  So, with perhaps shades of Terminator, Robots from the future go back in time looking for powerful Wizards.  But why?  Can’t be to say hi….

 DAWN: THE SWORDMASTER’S DAUGHTER & OTHER STORIES (one-shot) – Joseph Michael Linsner made a name for himself, and his creation Dawn, back in the 90’s when the ‘bad girl’ craze took off.  Dawn has proved to have legs though (ho ho) and has proved popular long after the craze ended.   This Linsner’s first new Dawn comic in three years so this should go down really well telling three tales from across Dawn’s life.

SATELLITE SAM #1 – This is an interesting team up, on writing chores is Matt Fraction of Marvel fame and Howard Chaykin on art.  What are these two legends of comics working on?  Another pulp genre outing, this series will deal with the darker side of the golden age of television.  Perhaps they’ll reference what used to happen on the set of the 60’s Batman show?  This will be a little bit dark and perhaps a little uncomfortable.  Where do I sign up!