I saw The Avengers again this weekend for the Labor Day rerelease. There was nothing new added but I loved it all the same. And even better than that was seeing it with a group of people who had somehow never seen it before this point. That is the best when you get to see something again for the first time, vicariously, through friends. Their love just refueled my love that already existed for it. Just the best.
And then I got to shred any "wow, Avengers was cool, Tracie likes something cool" cred by geeking all over them with explanations of who "Ron Perlman's brother" was at the end. Anyway. COMICS!
Action Comics #0
The beginning of Zero Month! Which I guess is also a thing DC did in the early/mid 90's except without a whole Zero Hour "Can we fix the Legion of Superheroes again?" crossover. This is more of a "Hey, we just passed our 1 year anniversary of The New 52, let's maybe answer some questions for fans who've been scratching their heads the past 12 months regarding our still rather screwy continuity." However, since Grant Morrison has kept things pretty tight in his Superman Year One/Two series, here we have a tale that brings us back a step to the T-Shirt and Jeans Superman that I love in a so perfectly Silver Agey sounding tale "The Boy Who Stole Superman's Cape." YES PLEASE. And ohman, the beautiful Ben Oliver art.
Amazing Spider-Man #693
Part Two of the Spider-Man 50th Anniversay tale, "Alpha," introducing Spider-Man's new sidekick(?) and more wonderful art by Humberto Ramos that could only be more wonderful if Wayne Faucher was inking it. (I AM AN INK SNOB)
Animal Man #0
Zero Month Animal Man lets us take a step back from the Rotworld epic this book's been embroiled in to give us the Secret History of Animal Man and Buddy Baker back in a superhero costume. Yay!
Before Watchmen Silk Spectre #3
This book has taken a pretty unexpected turn (including some even MORE unexpected "villains") but gosh darnit if Amanda Conner isn't the most charming artist in comics. It is impossible not to have fun reading her comics.
Big Hero 6 Brave New Heroes #1
So this is a book collecting the under-the-radar Big Hero 6 mini series from 2008, written by Chris Claremont and drawn by David Nakayama. Big Hero 6 was introduced as Japan's Avengers, basically. Their superhero team. The concept was introduced during Steve Seagle and Duncan Rouleau's Alpha Flight run and they got a mini in 1998 and this follow-up 10 years later. Their most recent appearance was during the Ends of the Earth storyline in Amazing Spider-Man. Why the sudden interest? Well, I don't know how official it is since there doesn't appear to be any script, just an "open writing assignment," but apparently Big Hero 6 is intended to be Marvel & Disney's first animated collaboration. Which is... an unnusual choice, but they are certainly characters that would serve very well in animation, particularly for anime fans, and BH6 creators Seagle and Rouleau have a good track record of creating popular animated properties with Ben 10, Generator Rex, and the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon.
Dark Avengers #180
I'm going to be very sad when this book completely stops being about The Thunderbolts and starts being only about the Dark Avengers but I am going to trust Jeff Parker because he has made Thunderbolts/Dark Avengers one of the most fun books at Marvel. But... not having Ghost, Boomerang, Satana or Troll will be very sad indeed.
As if the Joe Quinones cover wasn't delightful on its own (it was), then they brought back the classic Marvel corner box headshots. Which is a total Defenders move and another reason why it is an absolute crime that this book is being canceled at #12 just because you weren't cool enough to read it or something.
Dial H #0
Zero Month story of one of the first users of the H-Dial. This is one of the few really great, unique books in The New 52 and I'm curious to get more background from these guys.
Earth 2 #0
Zero Month takes us back to when the Earth 2 versions of Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman were still alive and we see, maybe, how different they might have been from the counterparts we're more familiar with.
Green Arrow #0
I haven't been buying The New 52 Green Arrow, despite the pre-52 Green Arrow being one of my favorite DC heroes (next to Superman), though he was in decline then, too. I did give the first issue a chance but BOY this is not the Oliver Queen I wanted to read about. The Oliver Queen I want to read has a Errol Flynn goatee, has great but unusual father/son, father/daughter relationships, is a hardnosed liberal, a well-meaning jerk, and who I describe as Bruce Wayne if he knew how to have fun. I don't really care about some kid who has money and shoots arrows at dudes. Without the pathos, he isn't anything at all, really. He's way more interesting to me as an old man who makes/has made mistakes but keeps going and keeps trying to do the right thing while still screwing up all over the place. I dunno. But here I am buying the Zero Issue for one reason only, it is written by Judd Winick who was one of my favorite pre-52 Green Arrow writers, which means this is the closest I could get to an Oliver Queen I might recognize, even if it's still young kid Oliver Queen. It's just a shame that he's only writing the one issue.
Green Lantern #0
Well, here it is, folks. We've seen him teased in the Free Comic Book Day special and the latest Justice League, but this is our first real introduction to the new Green Lantern, Baz, the Arab-American who seemingly inherits Hal Jordan's ring and is set to join the impending Justice League of America.
So I hope you guys all caught how much Robb and I and the rest of the internet was raving about Hawkeye #1 because you still have a great opportunity here to jump on to one of the most impressive new comics I've read in a while. The first issue was a brilliantly paced, perfect blend of story and art and a stand-alone tale to boot. This issue introduces Hawkeye's partner, Kate Bishop, the Hawkeye of my beloved Young Avengers, so this is very, very exciting for me to see Kate back and in such capable hands. Can't wait to see how this issue stacks up with the impressive debut.
Invincible Iron Man #524
This is shaping up to be a might epic throwdown with the Mandarin and Fraction is definitely going out with a bang as this major final storyline has just been dubbed "Armor Wars III" which is a pretty big move as far as Iron Man fans are concerned.
Mighty Thor #19
Part 2 of the Gillen/Fraction/Thor/Kid Loki major crossover farewell for these writers on these characters.
Phantom Stranger #0
Well, a little unsure about this series so I hope the Zero issue will be a good primer for whether or not this is something I want to follow. I'm pretty curious about the new Phantom Stranger and his origins and ties to Pandora and The Question in The New 52. I'm not super confident in Dan Didio's writing skills but at least if there's a character/book that's going to rely a lot on major overarching mystires of the DCU, I'd expect one of the dudes in charge of the company to have a little insider knowlege and control over such things.
I love Greg Rucka's Punisher, you guys. I love it so much. Why won't you let me have this. I've never had a Punisher, why can't I have this one? (I mean, other than I will have gotten nearly two years worth of issues by the time this and War Zone wraps up)
Road To Oz #1
This is... I think... the final book in the Oz series? What an acheivement to have one creative team tell an entire series of books in gorgeous comic book form. So wonderful.
Swamp Thing #0
Zero Issue featuring the origin of Anton Arcane and secrets of Alec Holland!
Sweet Tooth #37
Closing in ever more to the series finale. Top notch, all around, always.
Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #14
MILES MORALES!!! Miles is getting some schooling from Captain America and, well, some folks named May Parker and Gwen Stacy... I so completely love this book.
Worlds' Finest #0
Zero Month lets us dive back to a time when Helena and Karen were still Robin and Supergirl on Earth 2 in an issue FULL of Kevin Maguire art. This makes me very happy and this book has been a surprise treat for me even if it's a little creepy how well an old man like Paul Levitz writes these two gals. They are my favorite best friends in The New 52.
THAT IS ALL. 'Til next time. Excelsior!