Comics Guide for week of June 3, 2024



Week 6 in "Blood Hunt"

BLOOD HUNTERS #2, by Kaare Andrews, Ann Nocenti, David Baldeon and Bernard Chang, asks the musical question, "What happens when vampires get a taste of gamma-irradiated blood?" You won't want to see them angry, I imagine. 



WOLVERINE: BLOOD HUNT #1 (OF 4) by writer Tom Waltz and artist Juan Jose Ryp: We saw from the last storyline to feature vampires vs. mutants that Wolverine's healing factor can overcome getting bit. So he does turn, but it doesn't last. That should come in handy: He can just wade in and start slicing, which is pretty much what everybody wants to see, anyway.

This story is the Marvel debut of Waltz, formerly of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and in honor of that, TMNT co-creator Kevin Eastman is doing a variant cover. (It's No. 3 below, and includes Louise of the Nightguard.

"I've spent much of my career writing about iconic mutants, so having my Marvel debut be a chance to put 'the best there is' through a vampiric bloodstorm in WOLVERINE: BLOOD HUNT is an absolute thrill of a lifetime,” Waltz shared. “It’s made even better by getting to do it alongside the amazingly talented Juan José Ryp, top-notch colorist GURU-eFX, and stellar editors Mark Basso and Drew Baumgartner! Blood, bullets, claws, and fangs—nothing gets held back in our four-issue gauntlet of gore!"

"I couldn't be more proud and thrilled to join my ‘Last Ronin Bro’ Tom Waltz on his first Wolverine story!” Eastman shared. “I was lucky enough to be invited to add a cover to the issue, and do my small part for the incredible team that brought this issue to life. The story rocks, the art rocks - can't wait for you all to sink your teeth into this one!"

"I've spent much of my career writing about iconic mutants, so having my Marvel debut be a chance to put 'the best there is' through a vampiric bloodstorm in WOLVERINE: BLOOD HUNT is an absolute thrill of a lifetime,” Waltz shared. “It’s made even better by getting to do it alongside the amazingly talented Juan José Ryp, top-notch colorist GURU-eFX, and stellar editors Mark Basso and Drew Baumgartner! Blood, bullets, claws, and fangs—nothing gets held back in our four-issue gauntlet of gore!"

“WOLVERINE: BLOOD HUNT… Wow. My favorite Marvel character against VAMPIRES!!! And who doesn't like vampires? (unless you prefer werewolves). This is surely the most dynamic, bloody, and daring series I have been able to draw. I hope seeing a lot of blood doesn't scare you off!” Ryp teased.






This week in "Fall of X": 

X-Men #35 by writers Gerry Duggan, Kieron Gillen, Al Ewing, Chris Claremont, Gail Simone and artists Phil Noto, Joshua Cassara, Lucas Werneck, Jerome Opena, Stefano Caselli, Walter Simonson, Leinil Francis Yu, more: This is not just the "final act" in the "Fall of X," and the last issue of this iteration of the title, but also (they say) issue #700. 

“Being a part of the Krakoan experiment has been a true thrill," Senior Editor Jordan D. White said. "Honestly—in many ways it echoed the experience of mutantkind itself in the era. We worked differently, we tried new things, we survived incredible new experiences. I consider myself extremely fortunate to have worked with such fantastically talented creators throughout the era, and working on the glorious ending is truly bittersweet. I will miss it with my whole heart, but I do know… Krakoa will live on within us forever.”



Artist Scott Koblish has crafted this snappy cover variant:



MS. MARVEL: MUTANT MENACE #4 (OF 4) also ships this week.

This week in Spider-Man

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #51, by writer Zeb Wells and artist Ed McGuinness, promises a new Green Goblin, which I'm pretty sure is going to be Peter Parker. (Overwhelmed by the "sins" of Norman Osborn, which have somehow been rattling around separately for a while.) Since Parker has already been Doc Ock-ish, this feels like old territory, and besides, it's just icky. But there's a new Sinister Six (which is actually the OG six) to leaven my disappointment.



More Spider-Man:

  • CARNAGE #8
  • WHAT IF VENOM #5 ... became Moon Knight.

This week in Star Wars:

  • STAR WARS #47

This week in Ultimates

ULTIMATES #1 by Deniz Camp and Juan Frigeri gets the band back together. You've got your OG Avengers (Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, Ant-Man, Wasp) and your surprises (Dr. Doom, Sif, Spider-Man). And you've got your questions, or at least I do. But that's why you have to read the books, I suppose. Anyway, Iron Lad (Tony Stark) is trying to jump-start heroes whose origins were nixed by The Maker (Reed Richards). According to the PR, he's got a two-year time limit, for some reason. But I enjoyed what I read in the FCBD preview.

"The new Ultimates line is the most exciting super hero comics event in years, and it’s humbling to be a part of it!" Camp shared. “We are reinventing these classic characters and archetypes to be as surprising and vital as when they were first introduced. Our Ultimates is an evolution not just of the Avengers, but of the whole super hero team concept; from the grand and operatic to the small and personal, THE ULTIMATES will feel like no Avengers or Ultimates comic ever before! That's our ambition, anyway; tune in to find out if we succeed.“

“On a personal note, my first big break in comics was winning the Millarworld talent competition, so there is a strange, sweet symmetry to taking on the title Mark and Bryan pioneered 20+ years ago,” Camp added. “We're doing everything we can to live up to the ‘Ultimates’ name, and the high bar set by Jonathan, Marco [Checchetto], and all the Ultimate creative teams so far!”




Elsewhere at Marvel:




Compact Editions

DC has launched a line of smaller-size books (5.5" x 8.5") at a lower price point ($9.99), giving DC the chance to reprint its evergreen catalog once again. Here's this week's dual offering.


Here are some upcoming editions:

  • All-Star Superman by Grant Morrison, Frank Quitely
  • Far Sector by N.K. Jemisin, Jamal Campbell
  • Wonder Woman: Earth One by Grant Morrison, Yanick Paquette
  • American Vampire Book One by Scott Snyder, Stephen King, Rafael Albuquerque
  • Batman: Hush by Jeph Loeb, Jim Lee
  • Joker by Brian Azzarello, Lee Bermejo
  • Harley Quinn & the Gotham City Sirens by Paul Dini, Peter Calloway, Tony Bedard, Guillem March, Andres Guinaldo
  • Catwoman: Trail of the Catwoman by Darwyn Cooke, Ed Brubaker

This week in Batman

  • BATMAN #148
  • POISON IVY #23
  • THE BOY WONDER #2 (OF 5) guest stars Jason Todd.

Elsewhere at DC:

BARDA TP: I read the FCBD excerpt and rather liked it. The art is YA-ish, but the storyline can't be, since it takes place in Barda's early years being molded by Granny Goodness to be a lethal killer, and it mostly takes place in Apokalips. So it's pretty grim. Well, until Barda meets a guy named Scott Free.

DC PRIDE: A CELEBRATION OF RACHEL POLLOCK #1: Recently deceased writer, known to us mostly through Doom Patrol.

IDENTITY COMPLEX 20TH ANNIVERSARY DELUXE EDITION HC: I wasn't pleased enough with this the first go-round that I want to make room for it on my shelf.

LITTLE ENDLESS STORYBOOK BOX SET: I almost skipped this because it looked like a kiddie set. But on second glance I realized it was Sandman's The Endless in the children's-fable-style stories from Sandman #40, separated into two short HCs. They are not for children at all!

MAD MAGAZINE #1 FACSIMILE EDITION: I have read the comics issues of MAD a half-dozen times. I sure wish they would start reprinting comprehensively after issue #24.

MY ADVENTURES WITH SUPERMAN #1 (OF 6) by Josie Campbell and Pablo M. Collar: I hear the cartoon is pretty good.





AVA’S DEMON BOOK TWO: AFTERMATH by Michelle Fus: This is a YA title, which I normally don't fool with, but Image has sent a lot of previews! Perhaps they will serve their purpose by intriguing you.

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FALLING IN LOVE ON PATH TO HELL #1 by Gerry Duggan and Garry Brown: Duggan promises we'll fall in love with the part of the story they're not advertising, but I don't know what that is (because they're not advertising it). Whatever the subtext is, the text is a samurai and a gunslinger in a purgatory of failed warriors, presumably doing what the title describes. I like the art, which reminds me of '70s Marvel/Warren magazines, for some reason.


GRIZ GROBUS TP by writer Simon Roy (Prophet, Jan's Atomic Heart and Other Stories) and artist Jess Pollard: Griz Grobus began life as a Webtoon, before becoming an HC, and now it's a TPB. It's a tale of life after the collapse of an interstellar empire. Apparently Roy has another story in the same universe titled Habitat, a technological society where things went South. This story is set in a more agrarian world, where things may turn out better.

“Despite a career-long commitment to excellency in storytelling and an unbridled imagination, Simon remains one of comics’ hidden gems," said Eric Stephenson, Publisher & Chief Creative Officer at Image Comics. "If you’re only familiar with the outstanding work he did on Prophet, you owe it to yourself to check this book out. Not only is Griz Grobus a perfect example of Simon Roy at his very best, it’s pure, unadulterated comics magic.”

"Part of what we wanted to make, in Griz Grobus, was a story that felt like a foreign film from a country you haven't heard of," said Roy. "Natural, familiar elements, sitting harmoniously alongside the new and unfamiliar. The proposition of getting to introduce a whole new audience to our little pocket universe, and the worlds within it, is very exciting!"



PRECIOUS METAL #1 (OF 6), by writer Darcy Van Poelgeest (Critical Role: The Tales of Exandria the Bright Queen, Lotus Land) and artist Ian Bertram (House of Penance), is a prequel to Little Bird Vol. 1: The Fight For Elder's Hope, if that is a thing you read and liked. In it, an amnesiac who tracks modified people tracks a modified girl who may be the key to unlock his memories. Each issue will be double-size, for a 300-page story.

"Precious Metal has been the biggest, and most fulfilling, undertaking of my creative career," said Van Poelgeest. "Returning to the world of Little Bird with Ian Bertram brought on a deeper collaboration than I thought possible, and the results are something transformative—for the work and myself. After nearly five years of immersion and experimentation, I’m thrilled to finally bring this monster of a book to readers world-wide."



SCARLETT #1 (OF 5) by writer Kelly Thompson (Black Widow, Birds of Prey) and artist Marco Ferrari (Frontiersman): Scarlett goes undercover in Japan (?) in the third of the four establishing miniseries of the Joe end of the Energon Universe.




BEYOND THE PALE #1 (OF 4) by writer Christofer Emgård (Hyperscape, Mirror’s Edge: Exordium) and artist Tomás Aira (War Stories, Night of the Living Dead) is a horror story set in the Vietnam War, and is connected to The Secret Land and The Whispering Dark. The quote below references the "insanity" of the Vietnam War, but you know, it was only insane from the American perspective. We were never quite sure why were there. The North Vietnamese and the Viet Cong knew exactly why they were there. 

“The senseless insanity of the Vietnam War lends itself especially well to tales of inexplicable horror,” says Emgård. “Beyond the Pale is my humble attempt to capture some of that madness onto the page, and Tomás has outdone himself in depicting the moist, suffocating jungle and the young, forsaken soldiers lost in its dark embrace.


CANTO: A PLACE LIKE HOME #1 by writer David M. Booher and artist Drew Zucker bring the third miniseries for this character, "a tiny clockwork knight." The first two miniseries are scheduled for HC release later this month.

“We’ve always known where this story was headed,” confides Zucker. “But it still feels surreal to have finally made it. When we set out on CANTO’s adventure I'm not sure we could have predicted how life changing it would be both professionally and personally. It has been a genuine pleasure to not only tell CANTO’s story, but share it with all of the readers who have come on this adventure with us. I couldn't be more excited to bring The Shrouded Man Saga to a close with our amazing creative partners and the team at Dark Horse Comics.”

“Five years of telling Canto’s story culminates here,” says Booher. “From the very start, we’ve always known how the Shrouded Man Saga would end. We never knew if we’d get there. It’s surreal and wonderful to bring this final chapter to life with Dark Horse Comics and our incredible creative team. The final battle has arrived, and you won’t predict what’s coming.”





GODZILLA RIVALS: MOTHRA VS HEDORAH #1 by writer Josh Trujillo and artist Josh Cornillon: IDW's Godzilla books always seemed aimed at the kids/YA market, and I am long removed from there. It's a valid approach, but Godzilla Minus One and the Legendary movies have proven that kaiju movies can be made that adults will enjoy. I'd like to see comics of that nature someday.



MONSTER HIGH PRIDE 2024 #1 is also for kids/YA. I read the FCBD preview and it seemed like a charming, punny knockoff of Wednesday's Nevermore Academy. I do like me some monsters, but this appears narrowly aimed at a segment of the market that enjoys high school stories. (In my own experience, that would be the age where I was in what was then called junior high.) IDW sent a 40-page preview which I feel guilty about not posting, but it would mean not running something else, as I'm hitting my space limit for this post.

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: ALPHA #1 by writers Jason Aaron, Tom Waltz and artist Gavin Smith: Jason Aaron has written such great work at Marvel that it feels to me like asking Leonardo da Vinci to give your living room a fresh coat of beige. But he wants to do it, and more power to him. I hope it sends TMNT sales into the stratosphere. I won't be along for the ride, but c'est la vie.

Aaron only does a 10-page prelude in this special, a teaser for when the new TMNT title launches later this year with him on board as series writer. The rest is by TMNT stalwart Tom Waltz, who has swapped places with Aaron by picking up a title at Marvel (Wolverine: Blood Hunt, see above). 






PROFANE #1 (OF 5) is by Peter Milligan, which always holds the promise of some bizarre twist. This one seems a little obvious, though, from the preview and the description. A private eye is investigating the death of a murder-mystery writer who seems to have invented Profane (that's a name) himself. So we switch back and forth from reality and fiction. I do like noir mysteries, especially those with purple prose, and I do like the art (by Raül Fernandez of Detective Comics and Justice League Dark fame).




007 BOOK 1 MYRMIDON HC by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Marco Finnegan: This is probably the last Bond material before Dynamite starts collecting the current series, by Garth Ennis. I get all the Bond GNs, because by and large I like them better than the post-Fleming prose novels.

SPACE GHOST #2 by David Pepose and Jonathan Lau: Pepose has written another open letter! I don't have room for it all, so I'll just include the pertinent bits for fans like us. Also this issue includes a Jonny Quest preview. (At a guess, I'd say it's probably the same one that was in the FCBD book.)

Here are a couple of Pepose remarks:

"Over the course of the next year, we’re excited to be introducing SPACE GHOST to new readers and diehard fans alike, with accessible, brand-new continuity that requires no backstory or prior reading to enjoy. Drawing equal parts inspiration from Batman: The Long Halloween and The Mandalorian, I’ve said the mission statement behind this series is 'Ultimate Space Ghost' — the only jumping-on point you need is to check out Issue #1.

"With over a dozen issues already plotted out, we’ll be sending Space Ghost, Jan, Jace, and Blip on a series of done-in-one adventures, as we explore the engaging and ever-changing dynamic between this lonely cosmic vigilante and his orphaned wards. But even as we follow our heroes as they become a found family of sci-fi crimefighters, we’ll also introduce exciting threats for them to face, including all-new takes on iconic supervillains such as Zorak, Metallus, The Widow, Lokar, the Council of Doom and more."




VAMPIRELLA: DARK REFLECTIONS #1 by Tom Sniegoski and Jeannine Acheson (Vampiverse, Pantha) and Daniel Maine (Vampiverse, Chastity): Hey, what happened to Christopher Priest? Well, I'm sure they're keeping him busy on other Vampi titles. In this one, Vampirella's daughter Lilith is dispatched to an alternate reality where that world's Vampi has fallen to agents of Chaos. Did you know Vampirella was an agent of Order? Did you know she had a daughter? Did you know the Vampirella series operates in a multiverse? I knew none of these things.





ALLEY OOP AND THE BRAIN BUTCHER TP (Manuscript Press): Comic-strip collectors alert!

ALLEY OOP: FIRST TIME-TRAVEL ADVENTURES 1939-1942 HC (Manuscript Press): Comic-strip collectors alert!

AND MANKIND CREATED THE GODS GN (Graphic Munci-PSU Press) by Pascal Boyer and Joseph Béhé (Graphic Mundi-PSU Press): This is a graphic adaptation of Pascal Boyer's Religion Explained, which attempts to explain why religions exist, and why they all seem to start with pretty much the same idea. I have my own theories, but they're not very generous to the faithful, so I'll just keep 'em to myself.

ARCHIE & FRIENDS BLOCKBUSTER MOVIES ONE-SHOT (Archie) by various: "Poolnoodle"? That's approaching MAD levels of parody. 


ATTABOY GN (Mad Cave) by Tony McMillen is an adventure story disguised as a video game instruction manual. The game pits Atta against various challenges to avenge his murdered father. As you can see, he looks like a pixilated Wolverine, but apparently that's not significant. Anyway, "heartbreaking truths" will be revealed, which I imagine will be that Atta and his user are somehow the same. But that's just a guess.


CATALYTIC CONVERSIONS VOL 1: INFINITE WHEATPASTE TP, (Avery Hill) by L Pidge, contains a bunch of sci-fi short stories that are interconnected. "Some are slowly making their way to each other, but some are breaking apart." Here's the KICKSTARTER.

COINS OF JUDAS: THE GAMBLER #1 (OF 2) (Band of Bards) by Travis Gibb and Rolands Kalnins: This is the second miniseries featuring the Westergaard family, which is searchig for the legendary 30 pieces of silver Judas received, coins which have terrible power and spawn terrible things. In this case, it's a gambler (called "The Gambler") who takes over a small Western town with the power of one of the coins.


COMPLETE WEB OF HORROR HC (Fantagraphics): Web of Horror was a short-lived competitor to the Warren magazine line, which ran three issues in 1969-70. I never saw an issue, but evidently it attracted some big names, including Bernie Wrightson, Michael Kaluta, Bruce Jones, Ralph Reese, Frank Brunner, Wayne Howard, Syd Shores, Norman Nodel, Otto Binder and Nicola Cuti. This will be the first time I see any of this work!


CULT OF THE LAMB #1 (Oni Press) by Alex Paknadel (All Against All, Red Goblin) and Eisner Award-nominated artist Troy Little (Rick and Morty vs. Dungeons & Dragons, Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas) is based on the "adorably demonic" video game about cultists of the Four Bishops of the Old Faith, who sacrificed Lamb, who returns empowered by He Who Waits. Yes, that does sound fun. Here's a PREVIEW at AIPT.


EDENFROST TP (Mad Cave) by Amit Tishler and  Bruno Frenda: Two Jewish siblings summon a Golem to survive the Russian Civil War. Not to be confused with the Holodomor. Or the Katyn massacre. Or Stalin's purges. Or the gulags. Or the invasion of Ukraine. You know, we're not perfect, but the Russians have a particularly brutal history. Anyway, it's hard to resist a Golem story.


GUMAA: BEGINNING OF HER #7 (OF 7) (Titan) by Jee-Hyung Lee and Nabetse Zitro:


HOGBOOK & LAZER EYES HC (Fantagraphics) is the story of how comedian Maria Bamford and artist Scott Marvel Cassidy (both of whom are real-life people) dated and fell in love, despite a history of bipolar disorder and unhealthy relationships, as told through the eyes of Bamford's two pugs, Bert and Blue Eyes. I haven't seen Bamford's Lady Dynamite! series, but I heard it was good.

HURRICANE NANCY TP (Fantagraphics) is a collection of Nancy Burton's underground comix. I'm glad the strange, submersive material of the '60s is getting reprinted and archived for the ages as the important historical work it is. OTOH, most of it isn't good enough that I want to spend money on it and find a place for it on my bookshelf. 

MAMMOTH #1 (OF 5) (Mad Cave ) by Paul Tobin and Arjuna Susini: Four scientists investigate an enormous phantom that appears periodically in a rural valley. One of the scientists is dead, which the PR doesn't really explain, which should liven things up.


MASK OF HALIYA: HEIR TO THE WARRIOR MOON HC (Clover Press) by Kaitlyn Fajilan, Cecilia Lim, Waverley Lim and Renoida Renovilla, Minerva Fox: A Filipino is chosen by an ancient mask with strange powers for an unknown purpose. Here's a PREVIEW.

NIGHT STORIES FOLKTALES FROM LATIN AMERICA GN (Toon Books) by Veronica Agarwal and Lee Durfey-Lavoie: Folk tales from South America, including "the Iara, a mermaid (or a pink dolphin?) who lures young men to her underwater domain in the Amazon basin; La Lechuza, an enormous owl with the face of a woman, who terrorizes people who venture out after dark (a legend found in Mexico, Chile, and Uruguay); and La Luz Mala, a spooky, evanescent light that menaces gauchos and other travelers on the Argentine pampas." I love learning myths and legends from other cultures, both for their similarities and their differences.

SECOND HAND LOVE GN (Drawn & Quarterly) by Yamada Murasaki: Two stories of twisted romance. I like the art.


STAMPED FROM BEGINNING GN (Ten Speed Press) by Ibram X. Kendi and Joel Christian Gill: A graphic adaptation of the National Book Award-winning history of how racist ideas have shaped American life. 

STRANGERS IN PARADISE VOL 4 TP (OF 4) (Abstract Studios): Terry Moore collectors alert!

TERRY & THE PIRATES MASTER COLL HC VOL 7 HC (Clover Press): Comic-strip collectors alert!

THE CANNIBAL GN  (Inhabit Media) by Solomon Awa, Louise Flaherty: Based on an Inuit story passed down orally for generations, The Cannibal tells of a man who turns to cannibalism, but whose wife escapes, and then how the Inuits must deal with the transgressor.

VIGIA #1 (OF 3) RELAUNCH (Band of Bards) by C.J. Hudson and Rodrigo Gil: A science officer and her AI crash-land on a dead planet, whose ancient civilization isn't is dead as it appears. Indiana Jones meets Alien? That's just a guess.

WHEN THE LAKE BURNS GN (Bdang) by Luke Langille, Genevieve Bigue: Four teens go hiking to look at a local phenomenon, where a lake in the woods catches fire. This looked like it was going to be a typical Young Adult book, where the journey is more important than the destination, and our protagonists experience coming of age, young love and self-discovery. But the solicitation adds that there's an old legend attached to the lake, the four get separated, and something more may happen. It could, in fact, turn into a horror book. Maybe it's both. 


WICKED TALES #1 (Blood Moon) by Christoff Rodriguez and Giuseppe D'Elia: A new horror anthology. Three stories, described as "the inevitability of fulfilling certain demonic contracts, how an obscure jazz trumpeter set his mysterious latest performance, and witnessing a gambler with some magical help pushes his luck too far, plus a flash fiction."







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  • There you are! I was beginning to wonder if we would get a "Comics Guide" this week.

    As it happens, however, I have nothing in particular to say about this week's selections.

    • Nothing about Poolnoodle?

  • Mentions of Cosmo and Sam Hill as well.  Archie has an impressive variety of characters, all things told.  It just happens that few ever approach the level of success that the Archie gang has had for decades.

This reply was deleted.