Tuesday, September 1, 2009

This week's comic book expectations

This week, the list of comic book releases is bereft of A-list titles. What saves the week are a few strong niche books and a couple of sleepers you may want to give a try. Check out the full list at THIS LINK.

The book I'm most looking forward to this week is Irredeemable #6 which, while unfortunately costs more than the 99 cents it cost last month, is 5-for-5 in quality so far, as far as I am concerned. Every month Mark Waid seems to find new and frightening ways to use Superman's -- er -- The Plutonian's powers. I hope by now you've heard me rave enough about this title for you to be buying it by now.

And, I might add, Waid has yet to be late with this book. How many titles have kept to a monthly schedule over a six-month span in the last few years?

Another anti-hero book is also out this week, The Mighty #8. And frankly, given the events of last month and who Alpha-1 killed (was I the only one genuinely sad that you-know-who was murdered?), this title is quickly gaining ground on "Irredeemable" in terms of shock value. The series has taken a disturbingly dark turn after writer Peter Tomasi established a likable and complete cast of characters in the first couple of issues, only to turn the world on its ear just as quickly. My main question left, though, is how this first run of 12 issues is going to play out, since DC is talking about giving the story another 12-issue run soon after?

DC also has a pair of No. 1s out this week, the first being a new ongoing, Magog #1. I am anxious to see what Keith Giffen (one of my favorite writers since the JLI days) is going to do with this character and how closely it actually ties into the main JSA mothership. As I detailed previously, I am finding it very difficult to watch Magog's current exploits without the influence of his "Kingdom Come" past. It would be an enormous tribute to Giffen's talent for characterization if, six months from now, Magog's tainted past (or should I say future) has been forgotten.

Another No. 1 you may find interesting is Red Tornado #1, the first in a six-part mini-series which is going to delve into Reddy's robot "family." I'm not quite sure what to make of this idea for a couple of reasons. 1) Red Tornado's gimmick has always been that of a robot trying tragically to convince himself of the humanity everyone else sees in him. Making him suddenly want to look into his robot roots undermines the depth of the character. 2) Does anyone really care to learn about these other robots? Isn't that kind of the Metal Men's schtick?

Also of note this week from DC is Supergirl Annual #1 (dealing with Kara and Thara's thorny relationship), Solomon Grundy #7 of 7 (which ties at the end to "Blackest Night," apparently), Batman #690 (continuing Judd Winick's solid Penguin-centric storyline) and Justice League: Cry for Justice #3 (which, from the looks of the preview pages, is even worse than the previous horrendous issues).

From Marvel, Cable #18 has to be considered one of the top issues of the week, especially considering the strength of the two post-"Messiah War" issues which have led Cable and Hope to flee into space. And when is going to space ever a good idea for X-Men? Honestly, between Jean's possession by Phoenix, Professor X's brood experience, Kitty's sacrifice and Havok's ongoing war with Vulcan, Cable should have known to just take his chances on Earth. But, this development does drastically change the landscape of this book and the situation with Bishop in pursuit, so it should be interesting how this advances the storyline.

The only other Marvel book which may pique your interest this week is The Torch #1. Now that Toro is back, Torch can't be far behind, right? Apparently that's what Marvel is thinking with this eight-issue mini-series in which, apparently, the Mad Thinker plays a central role. It may just be a cooky idea enough to really work.

And with that, I am off.

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