Mark Waid, Christy Blanch and the crew bring you an 11th hour list of this week’s recommendations!
Mark Waid and Christy Blanch, Alter Ego Comics, Muncie, Ind.
Saga #19, Image. Because duh.
Daredevil #3, Marvel. Because Mark is too humble to call it out but Christy says it’s her favorite series right now, mostly because of Chris Samnee’s art and Javier Rodriguez’s colors, Mark assumes. She’s also dying (no pun intended) to find out what happened to Foggy Nelson.
Velvet #5, Image. Because it’s a great example of the comics medium. An awesome female lead that is sexy but not sexualized. The art by Steve Epting is amazing, and Ed Brubaker’s story is terrific. It’s a book we’re proud to carry in our store.
Aimee LoSecco, JHU Comic Books, Manhattan
It’s the “no longer delayed” edition of Hot Picks!
Forever Evil #7, DC Comics. Yes, it’s finally here! The oft-debated (and rewritten) ending we’ve all been waiting and salivating for. What will become of Lex and the Injustice League? More importantly … will Nightwing live or die?!
Saga #19, Image Comics. Yes, it’s finally here!! The new story arc starts here! New readers who got their fix on the first three trades, now you can continue the quest seamlessly by transitioning to single issues. It’s worth it just for the letters page.
Daenerys Targaryen Legacy action figure, Funko. Yes, it’s finally here!!! The dragons are here! I’m not saying you shouldn’t take her in the tub with your Tyrion Lannister figure. You should just wait until you get a Littlefinger action figure first so you can have a proper brothel scene. I did not just type that. You didn’t read it. *Jedi mind trick wave.*
Ted Alexander, manager, Midtown Comics’ Downtown location, Manhattan
Saga #19, Image. “When is the next Saga issue coming out?” “Are you sold out of the new Saga?” Two questions that I’ve heard a lot the last couple months. My favorite thing about creator-owned stories is that the writer and artist can take the time and craft the story that they want to present and not have to be a deadline to rush out the issue every month. That’s no dig at the Big Two, they have perfected the art of speed and quality. The long wait will be worth it.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 30th Anniversary Special, IDW. Inside you’ll find a bunch of new short stories. What I’m going to enjoy is the cover (one of the rare times I pick up an issue just based on a cover). It will feature the creators of the foursome, Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, working together for the first time in 20 years. I hope there is not another long delay for those two again.
MPH #1, Image. Anyone remember War Heroes? That story from Mark Millar and Tony Harris about the US Army being supplied pills that give them superpowers and and allows them to defeat the world’s most dangerous terrorists? I was a big fan of that and I hope that it gets around to being finished one day. In the meantime, we get MPH, a story by Mark Millar and Duncan Fegredo about teenagers finding a drug that gives them super speed.
Menachem Luchins, owner, Escape Pod Comics, Huntington, L.I.
Let’s start off by pointing out that lots of amazing series are finishing up storylines this week: We’ve got Larime Taylor’s A Voice in the Dark #7, Brubaker and Epting’s Velvet #5, Montclare and Reeder’s Rocket Girl #5 AND there’s a new Saga storyline starting! (Though, assuming I’m not the first Hot Pick listed, you knew AT LEAST the last one already.)
But I like to focus on stuff you can pick up and just READ, so my picks are:
Marvel Knights: Hulk – Transformé, Marvel. Joe Keatinge’s second week in a row on my picks. His and Piotr Kowalski’s out-of-continuity Hulk tale is a wonderful treat for the comic fan who just wants a great story featuring an iconic character but doesn’t want to be caught up in cross-overs, guest appearances or outdated material. Bruce Banner awakens in France with amnesia. ‘Nuff Said!
Mind MGMT Vol. 3: Home Maker, Dark Horse. Matt Kindt’s fantastic spy drama ratchets up to a new level with this departure from his main storyline — or is it? Is everyone in this small suburban town really what they seem? Bwa-ha-ha! OF COURSE NOT, this is Mind MGMT we’re dealing with here! It should also be pointed out that that this book comes out as really nicely made and fat hardcovers but only cost $19.99.
Coffin Hill Vol. 1: Forest of the Night, Vertigo. Caitlin Kittredge is a master of supernatural horror. Throw in family secrets and a woman trying to make up for horrible past mistakes in the town she grew up in and then escaped from and you’ve got a good book. Include the art of the wonderful Inaki Miranda (and a fill-in artist or two) and you get a really wonderful comic that is half “American Horror Story,” half “Twin Peaks.” Oh, and it’s only $9.99. Well done, Vertigo!
Dimitrios Fragiskatos, manager, Midtown Comics’ Grand Central location, Manhattan
Transformers: Robots in Disguise Vol. 1 TPB New Printing and Transformers: More than Meets the Eye Vol. 1 TPB New Printing, IDW. My picks for this week are no-brainers for me. I’ve read everything from the ’80s Marvel to the Dreamwave to IDW, and this current iteration is the best writing I’ve ever seen. It’s difficult to write out an ensemble cast much less one with more than a hundred robots, and it’s easy to have them degrade into mobs, yet John Barber and James Roberts have been able to give the entire cast unique voices and experiences.
I’ve mentioned this before, but since it’s such a niche market for Transformers I know I can’t sell this to everybody; they’ll be turned off as soon as I mention matrixes and energon. For those of you who like Transformers, though, you need to get on this.
Tim Finn, Hub Comics, Somerville, Mass.
Black Canary and Zatanna: Bloodspell, DC Comics. Paul Dini writes these characters like he was born to! Joe Quinones draws character moments, vistas, and action! Dave McCaig’s colors make everything sing! You can pick it up whether you’ve been reading DC forever or for just a week. Joe Quinones signs at Hub Comics this Saturday, May 24, and we’ve got Bloodspell and the rest of his oeuvre in stock — Wednesday Comics, his Batman: Black and White and Batman ’66 issues, and more!
Genius Animated: The Cartoon Art of Alex Toth Vol. 3 hardcover, IDW Publishing. The work that Bruce Canwell and Dean Mullaney have done with volumes 1 and 2, which focus on Toth’s comic art, is nothing short of astonishing. Anyone who wants to draw comics or design for animation should own these three books.
Immortal Iron Fist: The Complete Collection Vol. 2, Marvel. The good news is that when Duane Swierczynski took over after Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction, this series did not miss a beat. he bad news is that the original, slim six volumes are out of print, and Marvel’s only left us with these two big $40 ones. They’re a better deal, but the higher up-front price has halted sales on this for us, so I give this provisional “Hot Picks” status. It’s awesome and I want people to buy it, but it’s expensive, so I understand why they won’t.