Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers #1, which was really good ("There will be no eating of teammates."), and G.I. Joe: Cobra #1-3. People who know me know that I don't just pick up and read a G.I. Joe comic. I've never been into them, and I was never even into the toys, really. But the guys on iFanboy really recommended this book, saying it doesn't feel like a Joe book at all. And it really doesn't. It's a lot more like a Queen and Country story. One of the guys (in the Hawaiian shirt) goes undercover, and it's an extremely good spy story so far. Cobra nor G.I. Joe (I believe) have never been mentioned in this book, but some of the characters have. VERY highly recommended!

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Really? No!

Yeah -- someone else has the rights for a comic book version of Dick Tracy, and Tribune Co. forgot that when they sold them to Archie. So they had to un-sell them and eat a lot of crow.

I also want to mention a consistently good book that I've been reading all along (and just read the latest issue of today): Manifest Destiny, published by Image. Chris Dingess & Matthew Roberts are telling an epic story of the Lewis & Clark expedition...but the area west of the Mississippi is not only fraught with the dangers the real L&C faced, but also Sasquatches, buffalo men, hallucinogenic fog, bird people, and all sorts of other horrors...not to mention the dubious loyalty of some of the people at their command. It's an excellent book, and I highly recommend it. 

I've been getting Manifest Destiny in TPB form. Must get back to reading it.

I read the first trade and I really dug it. Eventually, I'll get back to it.

Rob Staeger (Grodd Mod) said:

I also want to mention a consistently good book that I've been reading all along (and just read the latest issue of today): Manifest Destiny, published by Image. Chris Dingess & Matthew Roberts are telling an epic story of the Lewis & Clark expedition...but the area west of the Mississippi is not only fraught with the dangers the real L&C faced, but also Sasquatches, buffalo men, hallucinogenic fog, bird people, and all sorts of other horrors...not to mention the dubious loyalty of some of the people at their command. It's an excellent book, and I highly recommend it. 

I read the first trade and loved it--I immediately ordered the second one. I thought it was okay, so I never went back. Your mileage will most likely vary. I'm a history buff, so I think the divergence most likely strayed a little too far for me.

Travis Herrick (Modular Mod) said:

I read the first trade and I really dug it. Eventually, I'll get back to it.

Doomsday Clock #3: I'm really loving this series. Sorry, Alan Moore!

Southern Bastards #19: This is a great series too, but I really wish I had waited for the trade for this story, because it's coming out at about the pace of Afterlife With Archie right now.

Vinegar Teeth #1: From Dark Horse, this looked exactly like something I would have loved. For whatever reason, it didn't resonate with me.



Richard Willis said:

I've been getting Manifest Destiny in TPB form.


Same here. Great book. I'd love to see a TV series.

POGO: Animal Comics #12 was the last appearance on Bumbazine. #13 is the first appearance of both Howland Owl and Churchy La Femme. (Love that name!) #14 introduced a pig character that didn’t catch on: Francis Ferdinand van de Dandy. #15 introduced a one-off wolf character, Dr. Legerdemain Z. Presto and also a skunk character, Cousin Downwind. #16 introduces a character I know will last, but he appears in only three panels here, Porkypine.

When I was a pre-schooler, I used to sit in my mom’s lap and point to the Sunday funnies in the St. Louis Globe-Democrat I wanted her to read aloud. I remember Pogo and Li’l Abner and Smokey Stover were all favorites of mine at the time. I also remember having bubble bath bottles in the shape of Pogo characters. I think I had Churchy and Howland.

Kelley’s work in Animal Comics is simple and entertaining, and it’s interesting watching his style develop, knowing that he will become one of the best cartoonists of his day.

SKY MASTERS OF THE SPACE FORCE: The collections I’m reading contains 11 continuities. The second story introduces Sgt. Will Riot, a Ben Grimm prototype. It deals with a saboteur who bears a striking resemblance to Kirby’s Loki. The third story introduces a female character, Mayday Shannon. Her pose in the character sheet looks quite similar to a much later character from Kirby’s Silver Star. As I mentioned last week, the quality of the reproduction is inconsistent. Most of the strips inked by Wally Wood look pretty good; it’s mostly the later ones by Dick Ayers that are murky. It’s hard to imagine these strips are pre-Fantastic Four. I can see now why some consider Wally Wood to be Kirby’s best inker. There are a few errors in physics on display here, but in comparison to Gould’s fanciful “Moon Era” strips, it’s a textbook.

TOMB OF DRACULA #46 & 48: I started a comprehensive reading project twice before. the first time I got only through issue #30 or so, the second time only through #20. I’m considering putting this one back in the near future.

GIANT-SIZE X-MEN FOREVER #1: Dave Cockrum was a former Legion of Super-Heroes artist who went on to draw the X-Men. While there, he introduced the Imperial Guard, visually based on the LSH. Mike Grell was a LSH artist who never had the opportunity to draw either the X-Men or the Imperial Guard… until now. It is also interesting to see Grell’s work here because he once followed Neal Adams on Green Lantern/Green Arrow, and now he’s “following” Adams on X-Men.

A second story features the Avengers of the time when these stories are set (circa ealy ‘90s continuity) and sets up X-Men Forever 2. This issue also reprints Uncanny X-Men #108 (with art by John Byrne), which also features the Imperial Guard.

SAGA OF THE SWAMP THING: I started reading Swamp Thing with the first issue, but not in 1973. I read it when it was reprinted in the Roots of the Swamp Thing mini-series in 1986. Similarly, I did not read Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing when it first started, either. I had been aware of the reputation he had been building, though, so after I started reading the Wein/Wrightson version, I sought out the Alan Moore material. The first issue I bought was #34, which was a (recent) back issue even then, attracted by the cover.

Once I decided I liked it, I collected all of the Moore back issues and continued reading the rest of Moore’s tenure. The early issues of the series were pretty cheap then, so I bought them as well, but until the recent omnibus collecting them I had never read them. I’m honestly surprised at how good they really are. The main association I have of writer Martin Pasko is the execrable version of E-Man he did for First Comics. It’s been a while since I read the “America Gothic” arc, but I’m pretty sure Alan Moore revisits the town of Rosewood, IL Pasko introduced in SOTST #33. I’ll have more to say about that when I get to that point.

Umami #3 (Ken Niimura)

The third issue of Niimura's Panel Syndicate e-comic nicely resolves the cliff-hanger he left us with at the end of the previous installment. The two cooks seem to finally be bonding, which is a good thing because their trip to the capital may take awhile.

The Black Incal (Jodorowsky & Moebius)

A European classic I've always intended to read. This is the first part of the series, a free Kindle download a few months back. Surprisingly humorous: there's a lot of detective noir parody, despite the rather crazy dystopian future setting. I may try to get one of the series compilations in book form through Interlibrary Loan.

I get a bit behind on my reading even on the titles I try to follow. I can't remember if this was mentioned and thought to start a thread about it but I don't know how many of you read Peter Parker the Spectacular Spider-Man #6 (the issue before its Legacy renumbering) and know about its truly shock ending! 

(Yes I know it was done before but still...)

I don't want to give it away!

AVENGERS #678: I was caught up in the mystery of Voyager for the first two parts of this storyline, but the plot has moved away from that for now. The third part was delayed reaching my LCS due to a highway in another state closed by a snowstorm, and by the time I got to my LCS (on Saturday) that week’s issue had been sold out and I scrambled to find it. This week, although I was at my LCS by 12:30, it had already been sold out, forcing me to scramble again. This weekly storyline is difficult on retailers because they have to place orders for the first several issues before they know how well they are likely to sell. As popular (and as hard to find) as this story has proven to be, many customers at my LCS have added it to their pull & hold, leaving fewer copies for the shelf. I have now added it to my P&H as well for the duration of the story.

Having done that, I realize I’m not really enjoying this story very much. When I read the recap of #677 in #678 I found myself asking, “Is that what happened last issue?” Until now my main focus has become simply the finding of these issues rather than the reading of them. I’m not a big fan of this art style. I find it murky and confusing, not at all what I prefer in a superhero comic book. The heroes have changed so much since the last time I encountered them, plus this story has introduced so many new characters, I can’t tell the heroes from the villains. I have nothing else to say, really.

JLA DOOM PATROL SPECIAL #1: Unlike that of Avengers #678, I really like the art on display here. I wish I could say the same for the story. First of all, I have always objected to the kind of story I have previously (and perhaps unfairly?) classified as “weirdness for weirdness’ sake.” That what I see on display here. It’s one thing when Grant Morrison does it, but this reads like a pale imitation of his work (…to me). Worse, though, is that, despite this being marketed as “Part One,” it obviously picks up from somewhere. “Milkman Man” is actually Superman, and the other members of the JLA have similar such identities as well, with no explanation of how they got that way or even a footnote or editorial explanation of where this story is continued from. DC is playing to their base (the “Young Animal” crowd) and the assumption seems to be that anyone buying this crossover is already hip. My mistake. If a basic tenant of storytelling is to have a beginning, a middle and an end, the story told here (in “Part One”) has no beginning.

PHOENIX RESURRECTION: RETURN OF JEAN GREY #5: This is the conclusion of the mini-series which reintroduces Jean Grey to the Marvel Universe. The story is so decompressed that there’s not enough meat in any given chapter to make it enjoyable. I would recommend it only in collected form or for all five parts to be read in a single sitting.

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