We’ve got a solid week ahead of us concerning comics, and we have the premiere of Aquaman this week. I’ve heard great things about the film, and it looks like it’s a hell of a lot of fun, so I’m excited! Between this, work, and wrapping up my Christmas shopping, I’m going to be pretty busy!
Alright, on to business! This week’s releases are listed according to our anticipation scale, with titles listed in alphabetical order within each sub-header. For each title, I’ll include the official solicitation, the talent credits, a random comment (or rant), and the Batman News team member that will be reviewing each book. Following that, you’ll find notes pertaining to other DC Comics titles, as well as our Graphic Novel Watch. And finally, we want to hear from you! What titles are you picking up? Why are you excited? What do you hope will happen in the book? Etc. So, without further ado, review our Anticipation Scale, and comment away!
The Anticipation Scale
NO! – A comic I downright dread reading and if I wasn’t a reviewer, I would never buy it.
“You Don’t Have to Thank Us” – The idea of reviewing it doesn’t make me ill or angry, but it definitely sounds like it’s going to be a chore. Still, I’m reading it for you. I’m putting it at the bottom of the pile, but I’m reading it for you.
Mixed – A middle of the pile comic. It’s probably got the same chance of being dreadful as it does of being stupendous. I’m neither looking forward to it or avoiding it, whatever happens… happens.
Intrigued – I think this comic has potential to be a fantastic read. There’s some slight hesitation there, but it’s definitely going to be at the top of the pile.
TAKE MY MONEY – Everything about this issue has me excited. If I don’t get to read this book on Wednesday, I will be furious. I would pay extra just to have it in my hands right now! That’s how much I’m looking forward to it!
And as a reminder, our review scale is based on a 10-point system. A rating of “5” means the book is mediocre/average, and the more toward “10″ we go, the more awesome/worth buying it is. The more toward “1″ we go the more awful/not worth buying it is. That’s how we rate things. It’s not like most video game review scores where everything under 8 is crap, and it’s not like a school report card where everything under a 7 is failing or close-to-failing. Please keep this in mind when reading our reviews.
TAKE MY MONEY
Batman: Kings of Fear #5
Scarecrow’s endgame is in sight! He has created a world without Batman for the Caped Crusader to be tortured by. It’s a world controlled by crime, where fear always wins!
Written by Scott Peterson
Pencils and Inks by Kelley Jones
Colored by Michelle Madsen
Cover by Kelley Jones and Michelle Madsen
Josh’s Stance: Kings of Fear is easily one of my favorite books on the stand right now! The story is a lot of fun, feels like classic Batman, and Kelley Jones art is incredibly good! I know his style can be abrasive to some – especially those that are new to comics – but I’ve come to love it.
Batman-News Critic: Casper
Justice League #14
Let’s take a trip to “Hawkworld” in part one of a new Totality-related storyline! Martian Manhunter, John Stewart and Hawkgirl avoided “Drowned Earth” with a detour to Thanagar-Prime: J’onn looks to tap into the ancient Martian mental database, GL struggles while practicing his new UV powers, and Kendra searches for answers about her connection to the Totality.
Written by Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV
Pencils by Jim Cheung and Stephen Segovia
Inks by Mark Morales and Stephen Segovia
Colored by Wil Quintana
Cover by Jim Cheung, Francis Manapul, and Tomeu Morey
Josh’s Stance: I think one of the things I love the most about Snyder’s Justice League is how inclusive it is. We’re constantly seeing the depths of the DC Universe, and I wish other titles had that seem sense of inclusion to them. For me, it makes the book more fun! And let’s face it, I never mind Martian Manhunter or Hawkgirl getting the spotlight.
Batman-News Critic: Brian
The Eisner-winning creative team behind MISTER MIRACLE is back together as artist Mitch Gerads rejoins the Bat team for a special issue! Professor Pyg is loose in Gotham, and you know that means things are going to get weird…and bloody!
Written by Tom King
Pencils and Inks by Travis Moore
Colored by Tamra Bonvillain
Cover by Tony Salvador Daniel and Tomeu Morey
Josh’s Stance: So… The solicitation for this is wrong… Just an FYI. Anyway, apparently, this issue and the five that follow are supposed to be one-shots. On one hand, I’m excited. I feel like some of King’s best Batman issues have been one-shots or short stories. Then again, I don’t think this is the right time for one-shots because it destroys the momentum that King has built. It’s my understanding that the next few issues will contain a backup that deals with the cliffhanger from Batman #60 though.
Batman-News Critic: Elena
Harley Quinn #56
It’s Harley Quinn—crazy cat lady! Seems one of Harley’s tenants used to be a small-time, cat-themed crook, but now is just a lonely retiree hoarding felines in his apartment. Gross! Harley takes it upon herself to find homes for the “cat burglars,” but in trying to get them adopted, she runs afoul of the local pet store, “Men O’Paws.” But who’s gonna feed the kitties while Harley fights this turf war? And more importantly, who’ll clean their litter box?
Written by Mark Russell
Pencils and Inks by Mirka Andolfo
Colored by Arif Prianto
Cover by Guillem March and Tomeu Morey
Josh’s Stance: To keep from sounding like a broken record every other week, I’ll just say that I’m not a cat person… That being said, Mark Russell is writing this issue, so maybe it’s worth looking into. His writing tends to be heavy politically, but is usually good… I guess we’ll have to wait and see.
Batman-News Critic: Casper
“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”
The repercussions of the cataclysmic events of BATMAN #55 continue as a scarred Dick Grayson has given up his vigilante persona in favor a normal existence. A new job, new friends, new life—all are compromised when a safehouse full of old Nightwing gear falls into the wrong hands. Confronted with a past he’s worked so desperately to escape, will Dick Grayson answer the challenge by becoming Nightwing…or something else? The newest chapter in the evolution of Dick Grayson reaches its next level!
Written by Scott Lobdell and Fabian Nicieza
Pencils and Inks by by Garry Brown and Christopher Mooneyham
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Nick Filardi and Christopher Mooneyham
Josh’s Stance: DC continues to explore this experiment, and I think most of us wish they simply wouldn’t… May Scarecrow’s set-up will add some energy, action, and life to the narrative. Maybe…
Batman-News Critic: Josh
- Titles we will cover in This Week In Comics: Catwoman, Teen Titans, and the titles listed above.
- Additional releases from DC Comics: Damage #12, Freedom Fighters #1, Lucifer #3, Scooby Doo, Where Are You? #96,
GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH:
Batman Vol. 8: Cold Days – The wedding of the century is over. Batman took the long walk down the aisle for Catwoman…and now his life has been shaken to its core.
But this blow is just the beginning. Called to serve on the jury for the trial of Mr. Freeze, Bruce Wayne finds himself confronted with questions about his costumed alter ego’s excessive force—leaving him contemplating hanging up the cape and cowl for good.
With Bruce sidelined, Dick Grayson—Batman’s original sidekick and closest friend—puts aside his Nightwing role and assumes the mantle of the Dark Knight himself, putting him on the front lines…and in great danger.
The Russian assassin called the KGBeast is back, and now this relic of geopolitical warfare is rampaging through Gotham City with an anonymous puppet master pulling his strings. Facing broken hearts, broken bodies and an identity crisis like no other, can Bruce and Dick stop a cold war before they catch their deaths?
Critically acclaimed writer Tom King (Mister Miracle) continues his landmark run on one of comics’ most iconic heroes in Batman Vol. 8: Cold Days, featuring stunning work from superstar artists Lee Weeks (Batman/Elmer Fudd Special), Matt Wagner (Trinity) and Tony S. Daniel (Batman R.I.P.).
DC Meets Hanna-Barbera Vol. 2 – It’s the second volume of stories you never thought you’d see as DC’s iconic superheroes cross over with some of Hanna-Barbera’s oddest characters in the most unexpected stories of the year!
When Superboy and Robin try to help an old friend of Batman’s, they’re joined by the robot “Dog Wonder”: Dynomutt! In the 1970s, Black Lightning teams with martial arts master Hong Kong Phooey in a battle that threatens the fate of the whole world! The Flash meets a scientist whose so-called “Speed Buggy” may cause irreparable damage to the Speed Force! And when Aquaman investigates some bizarre undersea activity, a talking shark named Jabberjaw takes him to an alternate future where the partnership between humans and sea creatures is in grave danger!
All this, plus inspired takes on Hanna-Barbera characters Captain Caveman and Funky Phantom in a collection featuring some of comics’ top creators, among them Peter J. Tomasi, Scott Lobdell, Dan Abnett, Jeff Parker, Bryan Hill, Denys Cowan, Bill Sienkiewicz, Brett Booth, Paul Pelletier, Fernando Pasarin and Scott Kolins!
Collecting Super Sons/Dynomutt #1, Black Lightning/Hong Kong Phooey #1, The Flash/Speed Buggy #1 and Aquaman/Jabberjaw #1.
Justice League: The World’s Greatest Superheroes by Alex Ross and Paul Dini – The Justice League—they are known as DC Comics’ finest heroes, and they are prepared to save the world from itself!
From a noble attempt to alleviate world hunger, to fighting a seemingly endless war on crime, to granting the wishes of sick and needy children, to seeking truth in the quest for peace, to stopping a threat from space before it can instill enough fear throughout the world to rip it apart…
These are epic tales of DC Comics’ most famous, colorful and iconic characters, and through the amazing talents of Emmy and Eisner award-winning writer Paul Dini (The New Batman/Superman Adventures, Batman Beyond) and Eisner Award-winning painter Alex Ross (Kingdom Come), these heroes have been given life in a way that’s never been seen or experienced before. Collects Superman: Peace on Earth, Batman: War on Crime, Shazam!: Power of Hope, Wonder Woman: Spirit of Truth, JLA: Secret Origins and JLA: Liberty and Justice.
Super Sons Omnibus – The entire run of the acclaimed SUPER SONS series is collected in an omnibus hardcover! First, Superboy and Robin meet Kid Amazo, whose ascension parallels the boys’ own understanding of their powers—except he believes it’s his right to rule every being on the planet! Then, Robin has a new member in mind for the Teen Titans, and—spoiler alert—it’s Superboy! But Damian’s real motives for introducing Jon to the team will have devastating consequences! And Talia al Ghul returns for Damian, whom she trained from birth to be an assassin. Collects SUPER SONS #1-16, SUPER SONS ANNUAL #1, SUPERMAN #10-11 and 37-38, TEEN TITANS #15, SUPER SONS/DYNOMUTT SPECIAL #1 and a story from DC REBIRTH HOLIDAY SPECIAL #1.