February is almost over and I will not be sad to see it and it’s snowy butt get out of here! But let’s move on to comics and I have some good ones for you this week!
As usual I’m starting with first issues.
Did you hear DC is putting out a Lois Lane comic? If you haven’t you than you haven’t read this blog in a few days. I was given a preview issue of this and I am happy to tell you that the writer “gets” Lois Lane. The story focuses on Lois and her family and I enjoyed having this Lois history flushed out particularly seeing Lois and her father together. The main story offers some interesting beats but I think could have done with more than one issue to tell it. I’m hoping there will be more than one issue of a Lois Lane book some day.
I know very little about Lara Croft beyond the Jolie movies but given it’s Simone I thought I’d give a shot. I have to admit I was a bit lost at the start as this is a prequel to a game which features a younger Croft. But Simone quickly enables the reader to understand where we are in the story and offers a few nice character beats that help us get this Croft. And for the folks here for the game there are some big action packed moments. Selma’s art is very strong as well.
Technically this isn’t a first issue, but the first issue in a new arc. If you didn’t ready the first arc of The Wake you might want to jump on to this. I wasn’t given a review copy so I haven’t read it but Snyder is always a sure bet and the book was one of my favorites from last year.
It’s Aja and it’s Clint-eye which is a winning combination although Wu and Kate-eye is also a winning combination. And Fraction makes them both winners. (I should have done cross word puzzle pun, but man it’s early).
You know I don’t thing Greg Pak gets enough credit for the work he’s doing on this book and Action Comics. While Superman (sans Unchained) has been basically a car wreck, Pak’s been going along delivering, based on those I’ve read, a fine job. This issue brings Earth two and Earth one together which means we finally have Batman meet his daughter by another planet. While I was not given a review copy of this book the preview looked great and I was very happy with how Helena was written. Not a suprise since Pak and has been doing nice work with Catwoman, Wonder Woman and Lois Lane on Earth-2. Jae Lee is back on art for this issue; wish we had him every issue.
Stark - Spidey Girl = win!
This second issue focuses on getting to know the school for assassins. The pace is slower than the first issue but the upside is that you get some great character work by Wes Craig. As a reminder this book is very dark so if that’s not your style you might want to pass.
I don’t buy my kids comics until Saturday but I did have a two I wanted to point out this week. I noted last night that DC had three female writers this week. In addition to Nocenti and Bennett we have a female writer on Scooby Doo.
Also out this week is another issue of the awesome Powerpuff Girls
I like this cover.
That’s it for me. What’s on your list? What did you like this week and what didn’t you like. Put it in the comments!
What a week! Not only do we get Batman #28 which I posted on earlier. we get some first issues.
I love books that have a historical “what if” angle and this week’s debut The Royals: Masters of War goes all in with a “what if the royal family had superpowers during WW II.” You had me and royal family and superpowers, Vertigo. The art by Simone Coleby looks great. Can’t wait to read this one.
While I don’t write about her a lot, I really do love Jen Walters. Love her break the third wall series by Byrne, like a lot of what Slott did with her and enjoyed her series She-Hulks as well. And most recently I adored her in FF by Fraction and Allred. Let’s shed a tear for that book. But Marvel has given her her own title again and it debuts today. Charles Soule is writing and Javier Palido (who has most recently filled in on Hawkeye) is on art. The preview looked good and while Marvel does not provide me with review issues, I have been told by those that they do that this is very good.
Antony Johnston hit my radar with Umbral last year making me excited to read this. It’s a police procedural in space with a nice to see pairing in comics - young man of color and older woman. The art by Justin Greenwood does so nice world building. This is fun, give it a try.
This is one of the best comics available right now, why aren’t you reading it?
Still enjoying this series - are any of you reading this?
That’s it for this week. Probably. What’s on your list.
I was really looking forward to Ms. Marvel but I kept my expectations as low as I could so I wouldn’t be disappointed. But i’m here to report I adored the first issue and it exceeded my expectations.
Where to start? How about a quirky teen girl who looks and sounds like a real teen? How about the lovely art by Adrian Alphona that walks a thin line between naturalistic and cartoony that feels just right?
It’s rare that you not only like a character in the first issue but you also understand her. Kamala is young and energetic and embraces her nerdiness and her dissatisfaction with what she is shackles of her family and faith. She’s a teenager to be sure, but a lovable one. The closest character I can think of to Kamala who has appeared in comics is the Stephanie Brown who appeared in Bryan Q. Miller’s 24 issue run of Batgirl.
Brown, whom I adored, was physically the clone of just about every other young girl that appeared in comics - blonde and blonder. Kamala looks different and she is different. Her Muslim faith is front and center in this book but Wilson doesn’t use it as just a way to differentiate her - she uses it to help define her.
Wilson, who previously impressed me with a younger female characters in a reboot of Mystic, has a very steady in this first issue given all she has to accomplish. She introduces Kamala, her family, her supporting cast and the Avengers while setting up just how Kamala gets her powers. The frenemies are a bit too stereotypical although I suspect they will gain more shading as time goes on.
I was a fan of Alphona’s Runaways work and he is just a great pick for this book. He nails the facial expressions of the characters, defines Kamala’s home and world and does a nice trippy page that stil fits in with the feel of the book.
I’m thrilled there is a book with young female lead of color that is fun and quirky and offers a welcome break from the grim and grimmer that so many, many comics today have. Welcome Kamala Khana and kudos Marvel G. Willow Wilson, Adrian Alphona and editor Sana Amanat. If you didn’t pick this up when I told you to - go get it now!
What did you think?
So we have a big first issue this week and I wrote a bit about it and posted the preview here. I’m very, very excited about this book so go out and support it!
Two female superheroes - including a legacy of the other - what’s not to love?
And speaking of female superheroes from Marvel
Have you been enjoying this? Gah I love Noto’s art.
Remember how people were all excited for Mighty Avengers but then they put Greg Land on art and everyone who is not a fan of porn tracing was like “I’m out”?
I have most excellent news for you! Valerio Schiti who did the art of Immonen’s Journey into Mystery with Sif is now on the book and he is AMAZING. I can’t wait to read this book now! So go give it a try - where else are you going to get your fix of Monica Rambeau and Jessica Jones (neither of who are on this cover … just say’n - also don’t be afraid - again Land is only on covers now)
Loki, Loki, Loki. I know some people adore him. And now he has a comic all his own. I’m not in the “adore” category but I do have to give them props for a book where the main character whose sexuality will be fluid. And that makes two Al Ewing books on the list this week.
Awesome Jenny Frison cover.
Let’s jump over to Image because there’s a new issue of Lazarus out!
So, so good.
This is the final issue of Batman Black and White but given these are standalone stories - I’m going to pick it up. It’s got a story by Cliff Chiang and Becky Cloonan sowhatelsedoIneedtotellyou?
The Joker’s Daughter hasn’t really worked for me but this issue may turn me around.
Have you been reading Trillium? You really should.
The Movement gets a guest star this week - hope it helps the sales of this book.
I’ve been staying away from Earth 2 for a variety of reasons but this issue I’m gong to try based on this:
That’s three female characters on the cover including two women of color. I’m in - at least for this issue.
I am going to look for the Cat cover variant of X-Men because it is awesome.
So that’s it for me - If you can buy just one comic this week I’d say buy Ms. Marvel.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with buying online you can go to Comixology.com and purchase the digital copy.
Everyone who is anyone in the bottom feeding world of comics culture aka “comic forums and chatboards” knows that women (aka “bitches” aka “feminazis”) don’t belong anywhere in comics, particularly the ones in the genre known as “superhero” comics and their presence there is just another example of women ruining everything!
Or so I’ve been told.
Anyway there are a lot of interesting stories on women and superhero comics around the net today that you can go clickity click and read. I’m sure they will put some folks in a lather but, really, isn’t seeing folks lose their shit half the fun?
Truth-Out has a nice interview with Kelly Sue DeConnick where she discusses feminism and comics.
DeConnick is always very quotable in her interviews and this one is no exception:
Finke: So, what propels you as a storyteller to say, “I know that these stories are not going to propel the business side but I’m going to do this anyway”?
DeConnick: I’m filled with piss and vinegar? I don’t know. It makes me angry. I was asked in an interview once: “You’re writing another book with a female lead, aren’t you afraid you’re going to be pigeonholed?”
Has a man in the history of men ever been asked if he was going to be pigeonholed because he wrote two consecutive books with male leads? Half of the population is women. I lose my temper here. And it’s certainly not at you. It’s just this pervasive notion that “white male” is the default and you have to justify any variation from it.
I woke up this morning to a half page essay in my hometown paper about the new Ms. Marvel comic which debuts this week by Prodita Sabarini, an Indonesian journalist. Unfortunately the piece is locked behind the firewall but here’s a snippet:
It will be cool to see how Kamala morphs into her multiple identities and grows as a superhero. Will she be able to live up to the mantel of the former Ms. Marvel whom she idolizes? Be as strong as her Afghan predecessor? Could she be America’s new superhero and save us all from prejudice? Time will tell. Let us watch her ride the zeitgeist and may she travel on the palm of Allah.
And speaking of Ms. Marvel, USA Today did a huge piece on it last week including a conversation with the writer, G. Willow Wilson.
And USA Today has another big piece today on the Joker’s Daughter one-shot that is out this week including some thoughts by Marguerite Bennet. The book has art by Meghan Hetrick making it a double female creative issue from DC. It’s happened before (How I long for the Simone/Scott team ups on Wonder Woman and Secret Six) but nice to see not one, but two ladies’ names on a cover again.
So the movie posters for Captain America: The Winter Soldier are out and it includes one for Black Widow. Let’s take a look shall we?
Well now. That’s a very non-gendered pose isn’t it … not. And it’s pretty clear that is not Scarlet Johansson’s waist. Well it is, but only in the world of photoshop where all women have waists that involve the removal of spines and ribs.
However, there is good news! Let’s look at her Avenger’s poster.
Only in the bizarre world of women and movie posters would I say that a photoshopped image of Scarlet Johansson with her waist whittled down facing forward would be better than a poster with her showing her ass first.
More Sif, Marvel please. Thanks!
Another snow storm in Boston today but lucky for me I can get most of comics without leaving the house. Here’s somethings you might want to take a look at this week. As usual I am starting with a first and, very very sadly, a last issue this week.
Let’s say goodbye first.
Today’s issue is the last for FF and I am very sad. This was a fun book, a lovable book, really, and it never failed to me smile.
This is dark, daaaark story (i.e. violence and suicide) by Rick Remender but also exhilarating in places. A street kid in the 80s find himself taken in by a mysterious group. The utter dank of the Reagan airs is on full display although they are much prettier due to the art of Wes Craig and colorist Lee Loughridge. This first issue is all set up and I’m looking forward to the next issue to learn more about this group of kids.
Annie Wu + Kate Bishop + Fraction = My Money Gone.
Phil Noto’s art went a long way towards me loving the first issue. To be fair Nathanson had a lot to do in the issue - both reintroduce the character and drive a first adventure. With that out of the way I’m looking forward to seeing him strut his stuff in this issue.
I’ve got a bit of variant fatique with DC but this cover is adorable (and a 180 degree from the regular Capullo cover. I’m going to try and pick this one up in a shop whenever the snow lets me. Looking forward to continuing Snyder’s take on Batman’s first year. I do hope Bruce grows his hair out soon.
What are you thinking about this book? I adore Rios’ art and I’m constantly surprised with what DeConnick has up her sleeve.
Looking forward to reading this - preview here.
The book Harley Quinn deserves.
I wish DC would make it easier to find their previews especially for a book on the bubble like this one. I had to search around the web to see anything about this issue. The art on this actually looks good. Still despise Condor.
You can tell Gail Simone is having fun with this book where she teams female writers with various artists to tell out of continuity tales about Red Sonja. Nicola Scott is one of the writers here and I hope its the start of a new aspect of the artist’s career.
The Lone Gunmen meet the Ghostbusters. For some folks that all that needs to be said. You know who you are.
Also as you are in money spending mode please make sure to check out the Kickstarter for my pal Kelly Thompson newest book. If you one of the many, many people who bought The Girl Who Would Be King you’re going to like Storykiller. The line-up of artist is amazing - Dustin Nguyen, Ross Campbell and Ming Doyle to name a few. She’s blew through over 50% of her goal in just 7 hours so get in on this now!
That’s it for me this week. What’s on your list?
While DC/WB wrings it hands about how “tricky” Wonder Woman is and other how they JUST HAVE TO GET HER RIGHT (because there are no mulligans for female heroes) Marvel has announced THEIR bad ass superhero goddess is dropping into prime time for a visit.
Marvel has announced that Jaime Alexander will appear on the show in February for role integral to the plot.
It’s not that hard, people.
One of the comics I’m looking forward to this year is Ms. Marvel from writer G. Willow Wilson and artist Adrian Alphona. Here is a preview of the first issue due next month.
Just a few more weeks in the year! Time to start thinking about those best and worst lists. Today’s list is a bit of a mish mash so let’s get to it, shall we?
Let’s start with Batman because, well, he’s Batman. And it’s the best book DC Comics has got right now.
Sometimes I think the storylines for this are driven by how they can get Kara to pose a certain way (as opposed to her losing most of her clothes which is what I thought last year. But the boob window is back now.)
Have you been reading this book? So glad Vertigo is still around.
You know I usually go on and on about Rucka but I think I’ll go on and on about Michael Lark a bit. He’s just amazing - great character design and world building.
It took awhile but there is a new issue of Day Men with art by Brian Stelfreeze. I really liked the first issue but four months between issues is harsh for fan.
This reminds me it is time to watch the “The Fight Before Christmas”!
Another comic by the Fraction guy. Geez take a nap, will ya?
I still wince at Land’s art. Laaaaaaaaannnnnnnddddddd. But the cover of this is Epting and I like the characters and the storyline so I’ll bite bullet again.
That’s it for me this week. What’s on your list? What did I miss?
This is a very light week which I suppose is good because MORE GIFT MONEY and sad because there just isn’t a lot I’m excited about.
Let’s start with my pick of the week:
Did you pick up the first issue? Well if you didn’t go get it and get this too. A cold war spy thriller with an older woman as the spy. The art is wonderful.
Jeff Lemire and Scott Snyder must have clones to keep turning out all these comics. Comics that are good.
Correct me if I’m wrong but this seems to be the only comic from DC this week with a female superhero on the cover.
What’s up with THAT?
Oh Fearless Defenders, your art was too booby and assy times and you did have that uncomfortable fake out killing of the character on the cover but you were fun and funny and I bought every issue. Misty and Val I will miss you.
It’s holiday time at the Avengers Mansion and it’s being written by Kathryn Immonen so I gonna take this as an early Christmas gift.
What this is ending soon? SORRY I CAN’T HEAR YOU.
Wow, after Fearless and this ends, the amount of traffic on Tumblr has got to take a hit. Does Marissa Mayer know about this?
The mini with Red Sonja with a whole of female writers continues. I like this retro cover which gives you two chain mail bikini’s for the price of one!
And that’s it for me. What’s on your list?
Happy Birthday, sir!
Q: How do you write such strong/well-realized/positively portrayed women?
A: I don’t. I write characters. Some of those characters are women.
She showed up at a Children’s Hospital. Dressed as Sif.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving for some of us. And along with stuffing our pie holes with … well pie, it is time to give thanks. And as I have done for the last few years I’m going to name some of the things I’m thankful for in comics this year. POSITIVITY!
Marvel Loving Ladies. Marvel has continue to show that it is commited to having female leads in its books. Despite the cancellations of Journey into Mystery (sniff) and Red She-Hulk and Fearless Defenders, they are back next year with Elektra, Black Widow and Ms. Marvel as well as a new #1 of Captain Marvel.
And speaking of Ms. Marvel …
Ms. Marvel. I know a lot of focus has been on the fact that Ms. Marvel has a Muslim teenager who is the daughter of Pakistani immigrants as its lead. And that the book is written by a woman, G. Willow Wilson. But the other cool thing? This is the first instance where of a female-led legacy spin-off book in superhero comics. Think about that.
Early morning digital comics. I still drop in the LCS once a week but it is pretty great to be able to wake up and grab most of my comics before work. Except Marvel. Getting going on that Marvel.
Matt Fraction and Kelly Sue DeConnick. I’m going to couple these two together because, well they are a couple, but beyond that because pound by pound I think they have contributed a lot of enjoyment to my comic reading this year. Captain Marvel, Ghost, Avengers Assemble, Pretty Deadly, Hawkeye, Satellite Sam, FF, and Sex Criminals. That’s ALOT of great reading. Keep it up!
Image Comics. Thanks for Saga, thanks for Lazarus, thanks for Mara, thanks for Glory, thanks for Sex Criminals, thanks for Fatale, thanks for just some of the best comics this year.
Superman Unchained. The real Superman and Lois Lane still exist at DC Comics and thanks Scott Snyder for giving them to us (Jim Lee too).
The return of Stephanie Brown. Thanks DC Comics for bringing back Stephanie Brown. Now bring back Cass Cain.
Women Speaking Out. Well it certainly has been a sad few weeks hasn’t it? You can take all the wonderfully positive things I’ve listed about women in comics and lay a big fat bag of harrassment stories in the middle of it and it really stinks up the room. But you can’t clean out the room unless people are willing to step forward. So to all the women who have spoken out about their experiences and commented on the experiences of others, thank you.
True Social Media. Say what you want about Twitter and the comments sections of blogs, I am so glad for you because you have introduced me to and helped me create friendships and mutual admiration societies that I could never dreamed would exist. And this year I met many of them in person. Growing up it was very difficult to find people to hang out with who also enjoyed comics. Today there is an endless stream of folks who I can chat with, joke with and, of course, complain with. It really is so much fun and I am thankful for all of you. Well most of you, the trolls and backbiters can … well GET STUFFED. It’s Thanksgving after all!
What’s on your list of things?