New Comic Books: August 16

NEWCOMICS

This week was an unbelievable week for comics, made so by the first issue of DC’s massive and ridiculous event, Metal, which is shaping up to be something immensely special and fun for fans of DC Comics. On top of that, so many mainline heroes had releases, with the entire Trinity dropping books this week. Plus, the first issue of Gotham City Garage!

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This was a pretty decent issue, but didn’t quite have the stakes that previous issues in this arc did. It’ll be nice to see Diana team with her friends to take down some ridiculous-looking assassins, but it’s not exactly something we haven’t seen up to this point. Overall, a good continuation, and lead-in to where this arc is going, as it seems to be more filler than anything.

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Super-Parallax! This was a great change of pace for the Man of Steel after he’s spent the last several months fighting classic foes from his youth. Now he’s up against the entity of fear, Parallax, in a fresh story, that you don’t see very often. Superman just won’t let up with the great stories since Rebirth, and this is absolutely no different.

JL

There’s a lot of fun story-telling happening this week, with the origins of the Justice League’s future children coming to light. The revelation that Jessica Cruz and Barry Allen have three children together made me practically fall out of my chair, and the thought that Diana could abandon her child? There’s something strange happening there. Something that we don’t know just yet. This has been a fun story already, and a lot of mystery still remains.

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This was a somber, slow-moving issue that built up to a fantastic reveal, that Batman would be joining a side in the War of Jokes and Riddles. The nine-course dinner was a tense back-drop to the chemistry between Joker and Riddler, with Bruce Wayne in the middle, attempting to play the part of a supposed peacemaker, but in the end, offering up his alter-ego as a prize for the victor. Batman’s plans are always best-laid, and it’ll be interesting to see how this one ends.

METAL

I have been waiting for this event for months, and now, with Metal upon us, I am not disappointed. This is so ridiculous, and so fantastic. This is everything that a comic book event should be. The story is slowly already starting to make a small bit of sense, and the inclusion of so many heroes that we haven’t seen in so long really make it feel like something special. This is absolutely my recommendation for the week, because if you’re a fan of DC Comics, this is going to make you giddy.

 

THOR

I was a little worried at first when the War Thor seemed to be making quick work of the Queen of Cinders after all the fan-fare and work they put into building her into a massive force to be reckoned with, but my fears were alleviated when she basically cut him in half. I’m somewhat hoping for a Thor reunion where Volstagg reveals himself as the War Thor, and Jane reveals herself as Thor, given their history and close friendship.

GCG

Being a digital-first story, the format for this was short, but sweet. It’s obvious this is going to be an incredibly fun Elseworlds title, and with an interesting mix of heroes and villains forming an all-female biker gang… well, that’s the beginning of a kickass story. The art is great, and the story is getting across a ton of info in such a short format. Very impressive.

Batman: The Enemy Within Full Trailer

Telltale Games has released the first full trailer for their upcoming sequel, Batman: The Enemy Within, and it gives us a better idea of what to expect from the villains of the story, both new and old. The Riddler is clearly the star here, with a more brutal take on the character, very reminiscent of the current War of Jokes and Riddles arc in the Batman comic series.

The Joker, and Amanda Waller, both seem to play prominent roles in the upcoming title, as well. Time will tell when Batman: The Enemy Within launches on August 8th.

New Comic Books: August 2

NEWCOMICS

Pretty straightforward, lackluster week of comics this week, as DC ruled with all the releases. Honestly, even in that regard, they were generally a bit underwhelming, as many of DC’s arcs seem to be in a state of flux before the big one starts in just two weeks, with Dark Knights: Metal.

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The second issue in the historical arc, celebrating America was considerably more grim than the first. I can’t say I enjoyed it as much, but I applaud the writer’s will to show the horrors of war for the what they are: horrors. Now that we’ve gotten that breather out of the way, I’m excited for the next arc to start with Superman encountering Parallax.

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The War of Jokes and Riddles has been a brutal read for Batman fans, with a younger, more inexperienced Batman, facing trial after trial, in an attempt to save his city from a never-ending battle of wits between two supervillains. This issue was especially dark, as we saw, not only what was happening in Gotham, but what Batman was willing to do to stop it. Coming within inches of murdering Deadshot to stop the five day spree that took hundreds of lives.

JL

I hadn’t read Justice League up to this point, but I figured a new arc, with future comic book children is definitely a great place to start. Stories like this are always fun, with revelations about parenthood, and great character design taking center stage. The story still seems a mystery, but given what we’ve seen so far, this should be an interesting twist on our heroes’ future.

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This was a legitimate touching tribute to the greatest to ever draw comics, Jack Kirby. The first of many Kirby specials that DC will be releasing focused on Orion, and his brother Kalibak. Two characters that haven’t been given the attention they truly deserve in recent times. This was a fun read, and the final short story, with Lonar the Wanderer, was especially great for fans of Jack Kirby.

Andrea Romano Retires

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Warner Bros. Animation casting director, Andrea Romano, has retired, after 33 years in the animation industry. Romano is best-known as one of the key people in the DC Animated Universe titles, working on everything from Batman: The Animated Series to the upcoming Young Justice: The Outsiders. She’s the one responsible for Kevin Conroy’s Batman, and Mark Hamill’s Joker. Tiny Toon Adventures, to DuckTales.

I shall miss so many aspects of this industry – particularly the people I’ve worked alongside, and all the fun that happens on both side of the glass. From the bottom of my heart, I extend my sincere gratitude to every actor, producer, director, engineer and colleague that has helped make this run so incredible.

New Comic Books: July 26

NEWCOMICS

It was a wonderful week for comics, as Marvel put out the best issue yet of Secret Empire. Meanwhile, DC continued their trend of having multiple releases each week for me. They’ve mastered their release schedule, and it makes each and every week awesome.

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It’s shocking to me just how good this book gets with each and every issue. As long as you take it with a grain of salt, and assume it’s a standalone story that will most likely not have as deep a repercussions as you think, it’s fantastic. This winding road, full of twists and turns has been great. The fight between Natasha and Castle was great, and her sacrificing herself to spare Miles’ soul was heartbreaking after all she’s done. To cap it off, the moment with Sam Wilson taking on the mantle of Captain America one last time got my heart racing.

 

WW

This short but sweet story for Wonder Woman has been a great read, filled with gorgeous art, and a nice palette cleanser since Rebirth started. Seeing Wonder Woman deal with smaller, more personal situations was a nice change of pace, and her love for children is something I will never get tired of seeing put on the page.

 

 

AC

Action Comics finally drifted from its throwback status to give us a pretty great twist, with Zod using the enemies of Superman to his own ends to free his family. Still for nefarious reasons, of course, but it was a good change of pace for the villain. The mystery of Mr. Oz and his infatuation with Jon seems to be getting deeper, and we’ll know more as Doomsday Clock approaches, which I cannot wait for.

FLASH

The most satisfying part of this story, was seeing Iris murder Eobard Thawne in the hopes that he doesn’t show up for a long while. He’s been a recurring villain to the Flash for so long, at this point, that it’s almost felt lazy, and I was glad to see him ripped from existence like that. The entire status quo of The Flash has been changed, with Iris knowing who Barry is, Reverse-Flash being dead, and now an entirely new arc about to begin. I honestly can’t wait.

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The inevitability that was the war between the Green and Yellow Lanterns came to a screeching halt. The thing that pisses me off the most? I didn’t see that John Stewart had a plan, either. Of course he did, though. That’s what he does. Imbuing the yellow rings with a green impurity? That’s such a genius writing move! It’s nostalgic, and such a great obstacle for the Sinestro Corps to overcome. Now, with Soranik going full Sinestro, it’ll be great fun to see her as a legitimate villain and enemy of the Corps.

SHADOW

This book has been so great to me. Two of my favorite characters, crossing over in a story so ridiculous that I can’t help but love it. The moment where Gordon threw back to Knightfall was great, and the dynamic between Shadow and Batman seems to shift with every page, in the most organic ways. My only issue is with Joker’s motivations throughout this, as he seems to be up to something, but I can’t quite put my finger on what.

DC Collectibles Reveals Their Upcoming Lineup

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DC

DC Collectibles is wasting no time at this year’s SDCC, revealing their entire upcoming lineup for the year, and it’s a pretty fantastic set of collectibles. We get more looks at the upcoming Gotham City Garage, as well as Artist Alley statues, Batman: The Animated Series figures, including an epic Batcomputer playset.

DC Collectibles will also launch a new 6.75” DC Essentials line that features Rebirth character designs and the greatest range of motion ever produced by the company. The first wave of DC Essentials figures, releasing in 2018, will include Batman, the Flash, Superman and Aquaman. Wonder Woman, Deathstroke, Green Lantern and Nightwing will debut in 2019.

Hit the jump for the full gallery of new collectibles.

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New Comic Books: July 19

NEWCOMICS

While not a jam-packed release week for new comics, everyone brought their A-Game with some fantastic stories that ran the gamut as far as what their goals really were. Ranging from tragic story, to educational fare, it was a great week for readers.

BAT

The second installment of the War of Jokes and Riddles seemed incredibly confusing, at first. I wasn’t sure where it was going, but at the end, when all the pieces fit into place, the origin of Kite-Man had unfolded before me. The tale was tragic, and unsettling. A fitting origin to the best running joke in all of comics. If you’re a fan of Kite-Man and his ridiculous antics, I would absolutely implore you to read this, my recommendation for the week.

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The other DC book this week is on the absolute other end of the spectrum. Superman and the Kent Family decide to unwind with a nice family trip across the Continental United States, educating each other on the history of our country, and instilling the merits of kindness and good in those that they meet. Even helping a wounded veteran secure a part-time job with their kindness. It was a feel-good book that was great to read after the tragic origin of Kite-Man.

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And with that, we have our best issue of Secret Empire. Twists relating to the Hydra mole, and the shocking destruction of the resistance home-base. Alliances were shifted all over the board in this tense and emotional issue, and it made for an overall fantastic read.

THOR

My last book for the week was one I was absolutely looking forward to, as Volstagg has taken up Ultimate Mjolnir and become the War Thor. Venting his frustrations and unleashing hell on the army that made him, the War Thor laid absolute waste to the armies of Muspelheim, and it was badass in every sense of the word. With Jane Foster’s Thor inching closer to succumbing to her cancer, will we see Jane become Thor permanently?

New Comic Books: July 12

NEWCOMICS

AC

This was just another example of the wonderful throwback that Action Comics has become. A great issue, with fun and interesting match-ups in a battle of heroes vs. villains. Zod was cold and brutal, probably the most interesting he’s been in years against Superman. Putting all the heroes, and even a few villains into the Phantom Zone should make for some interesting story-telling soon. Especially with one of those villains being Cyborg Superman, the actual mastermind behind this plan.

FLASH

We finally got back to form on the Flash, this week. Opening with a vision of the future, and Barry proving how little he’s been there for the people he loves, despite loving them more than his duty as the Flash was genius. Then, just like the Phantom Zone, Flash gets put in the Negative Speed Force! Which was also great, and spurred on Barry taking on some insane transformation into a Black Flash-esque speedster. I’m legitimately looking forward to the next issue, now.

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These prelude books have been some of the most confusing things I have read from DC in quite some time. They make sense in certain ways, with some mysteries that I’ve had coming to the forefront quite well, but it’s still such a conundrum. The build-up to that money shot at the end was so worth it. I can’t wait to see all the evil Batmen of the Dark Multiverse step through the void and tear some shit up. This event may not make much sense, but it has some serious potential to be a lot of fun.

WW

Wonder Woman has been another shining example of how great Rebirth is. This issue started off so personal, giving us a glimpse into Diana’s past and her thoughts, and how she handles the world of War and Destruction that she’s a part of. Then, we’re thrust into what seems like an innocuous event with friends, that quickly turns dangerous with a bomb under the table! That is grade A cliffhanger material for a comic.

GL

Well, that was intense. What a week for DC Comics. Not only did they have the only good books this week to read, but they were all spot-on. The alliance between the Green and Sinestro Corps has crumbled before our eyes in spectacular fashion, with Soranik scarring Kyle for the lie about Sarko, and now the murder of Romat-Ru being made public. This was an intensely emotional book for the Green Lanterns, and I’m so pumped, because it seems like it’s been a while since the Green Lantern books have been on a truly great path.

Joker: White Knight Coming This Fall

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DC Comics has unveiled a first look at the upcoming graphic novel, The Joker: White Knight. The new book sees Joker’s insanity cured, and hi begin a heroic crusade against Batman, himself. However, this crusade is a newly reformed “Jack” partnering with an equally reformed Harley Quinn, attempting to bring The Dark Knight to justice through legal means.

The line Batman rides between ‘noble vigilante’ and ‘overzealous oppressor’ will always be shifting as our own society changes.  We know the Joker is a genius, we know he’s relentless, and we know he can play the crowd, so why not make him a politician?  Frank Miller modeled him after David Bowie. Chris Nolan showed him as a controlled sociopath. I see the Joker as Don Draper.

The Joker: White Knight hits comic shop shelves on October 4. Hit the jump for a look at the full cover page, and a peek inside.

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New Comic Books: July 5

NEWCOMICS

Last week was such a massive week for comics, that it’s only natural this week would feature next to nothing. Marvel had no major reads this week, and DC only featured 2 of the Trinity in their solo books. Simple week, with admittedly some lackluster stories going on, as things start to wind up in anticipation of the rest of the summer.

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My recommendation for the week, Batman #26, continued the prelude to the War of Jokes and Riddles, as Bruce talks about the mysterious event in more detail, and recounts it to Selina Kyle. The Riddler and Joker have concluded they both want to kill the Batman, but can’t allow the other to do so, and as such, have started recruiting the other rogues to their sides, leaving dead in their wake. It’s a somber, slow-moving story that is clearly building up to a head. It will be interesting to see where it leads to the rest of the summer.

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Likewise, we have the polar opposite in Superman #26, as Clark remembers his experience as a child with Jonathan Kent teaching him to make better decisions instinctively, and Clark attempting to learn to do the same with Jon. This one had few interesting quirks about it, and showed a realistic take on trying to reason with your children as a parent. Especially, I would imagine, if they can do what Jon can, and have Damian Wayne as a, quote-unquote, friend. It’s worth reading if only to see the continued growth of Jonathan Kent, who is quickly turning into a fantastic new character for the Rebirth series.

New Comic Books: June 28

NEWCOMICS

Wow, what a week in comics! A lot of great new releases, and some really out-there stuff hitting shelves. I recently caught up on the DC/Looney Tunes special one-shots, and I honestly cannot recommend them enough. Interesting twists on classic characters, and genuinely thrilling storytelling. Marvel was filled with events, both good, and bad. I chose not to cover Edge of Venom-Verse because…well, it’s bad. So bad.

ELMER

My absolute recommendation for the week is the Batman/Elmer Fudd special from DC. Turning Elmer Fudd into a trained killer hunting the Batman over the murder of his beloved Silver St. Cloud? Who would even think of that?! Then going one step further and making Elmer a worthy adversary was wonderful. This is a hell of a book, that I cannot tell you enough times to read.

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Another great issue of Wonder Woman. This issue started off sullen, with Diana upset over the loss of her golden perfect, and Batman and Superman noticing as much during a JL-crisis. After they talk with her, and remind her of the hope she brings, we’re treated to a wonderful moment where the Gods bestow her a new golden perfect. Seeing Diana happy, with such wonderful art is genuinely nice to read.

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Marvel’s only good event happening right now, Secret Empire, has gotten brutal. Hope is becoming slim, and with Hydra attacking the resistance base, it’s only a matter of time before things get even bleaker. Especially with the now-resurrected Bruce Banner being used against them. I’m still so curious to this cloudy Steve & Friends segment we’ve been getting, though. With Red Skull now there, it’s anyone’s guess what’s truly happening.

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This has also gotten brutal, as you can almost see the implosion of the Green Lantern and Sinestro Corps coming to pass. Tomar-Tu’s murder is now known to Hal and John, and Soranik knows that Kyle and her had a son in the future. Things are pretty nuts. The anger shown in the moment of Soranik’s realization was an especially fantastic moment, and I look forward to seeing that play out in the coming weeks.

SHADOW

Truthfully, this book has been going in so many different directions, it’s almost been hard to keep track of. The Shadow seems like an asshole, but he might be coming around? I’m not sure. I know the Joker was written masterfully in this issue, and that moment with Batman and his rogues at the end made it all worth it.

FLASH

Finally getting Eobard Thawnes motivations for him treating The Flash the way that he does, and the hell he’s put him through… well, I felt the same way Barry did. That was the motivation? He treated you like one of his many sidekicks, and you’re mad about it? Disappointing reveal aside, this was another brutal read, as Reverse-Flash handed Barry his ass on a plate with that beating. I was legitimately sad for Barry, though, when Eobard revealed his identity to Iris unwillingly.

 

New Comics: June 14

NEWCOMICS

What a week for comics, this week. Both Marvel and DC brought their A-games with DC being the obvious winner. Not only did they have 4 core title releases, we also got the first issue of the new Batman-focused line-wide DC event. Such an exciting week, and I can’t wait to see where things go from here.

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Recommendation for the week is absolutely 100% Dark Days: The Forge #1. The first issue, acting as a prequel to the upcoming METAL event, this was an exciting book, with a lot of mystery, and some fantastic moments. John Romita Jr’s art is some of the best in the industry, and he was on top of it here. I’m so pumped to see where this has been leading, because this event has been all sorts of mysterious, with all threads leading here.

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Marvel’s big event, Secret Empire, also had a release this week, with our heroes coming face-to-face with each other. Not by choice, but when they’re both overpowered easily by Ultron Pym inside Ultron City, his dominant personality tries to coerce them into stopping the war. The moment where Pym gives Scott Lang the cosmic cube fragment, simply because he’s the only one who sees him as a person was particularly great. The mysterious Steve Rogers in the blue mist just seems to get more mysterious as he was now joined by Bucky Barnes, and Sam Wilson. An interesting twist, that should be fun to see play out. I hope.

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Hal Jordan and the Green Lanterns also saw a mystery start to unfold, though we know the answers to this one. Apparently it’s knowledge that Tomar-Tu murdered his fellow Yellow Lantern several issues ago, and now the Greens are paying the price for it. After the last arc was so severely short, I’m excited to this one play out in a bit more interesting fashion, though I expect the Kyle Rayner/Soranik narrative to play out in tragic fashion.

FLASH

The Flash continues to be such a personal, fast-moving tale, with the artwork and the thoughts inside Barry’s head doing so well to truly dig into our heads just how it feels to be a Flash. I had forgotten that Thawne remembers everything from before Flashpoint, so his interactions with Iris should be insane in the next issue. I wonder how she’ll take that knowledge? Especially with Barry bound to reveal his identity soon.

WW

The conclusion to Godwatch is a somber tale, with Diana fruitlessly attempting to bring Barbara Ann back from the brink. It’s satisfying to see Doctor Cale’s world implode around her. I feel sorry for her, after all she did to try to bring her daughter back, only for it to fail. But she should take comfort knowing that her daughter is not only safe, but in paradise. And she did that. But instead she’s selfish, and only cares about her daughter for her own reasons. A somber conclusion to a deep story. Now we begin with a new writer and artist.

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Basically every Superman book right now is a beautiful throwback to the 90’s with every villain just being a knock-off of Superman in some way or another. That’s not a bad thing. It’s been great fun reading these, and seeing all these characters again, with Superman being an easy standout among the Rebirth crowd.

Injustice 2 Character Roster

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So, in about 2 weeks, Injustice 2 finally hits store shelves and basically fulfills a wish I originally didn’t expect to see. The first Injustice title is an all-time favorite for me and my wife, and we had a ton of fun with friends and each other playing through this incredibly amazing game. Now, the sequel is being released and it looks even better than the first, with new characters, a new story, and now we even get character customization!

In preparation for the release of the game, Netherealms has been releasing a ton of roster information with character unveiling trailers and move-sets being released for the entire roster (that we know of). I have decided to take on the daunting task to collect all of them, outside of YouTube, so hit the jump and check out the entire roster for Injustice 2: Every Battle Defines You!

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