It’s a holiday weekend here in the states, so some of you are enjoying a nice, three-day weekend! I’m not one of those fortunate souls, however, I am off on Monday, so I plan on taking advantage of it. My plans are to read comics. That is it. Everyone else can go to their local pool/lake/beach, but I don’t plan on getting out of my pajamas. Yes, it’s going to be one of those days. But considering I’ve worked over thirty-seven hours at my day job within the past three days, I think I’ve earned a day of reading comics. Don’t worry, I will take a shower. I’m not going to be that lazy. I don’t need anyone smelling me through the interwebs. How’s that for a way to end this week’s introduction? Haha!
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
DCeased: A Good Day to Die #1
While the mainstays of the Justice League—Superman, Green Lantern and Wonder Woman—battle the worldwide infection in the pages of DCEASED, a group of other heroes work to stop the impending apocalypse—no matter who they have to kill!
Mr. Terrific assembles a motley group of surviving heroes including Mister Miracle, Big Barda, John Constantine, Blue Beetle and Booster Gold as they attempt to fight back against the tide of death. Can this ragtag group save the world where the Justice League has thus far failed?
Written by Tom Taylor
Pencils by Laura Braga and Darick Robertson
Inks by Richard Friend, Darick Robertson, and Trevor Scott
Colored by Rainier Beredo
Cover by Ryan Sook
Josh’s Stance: Tom Taylor has delivered one hell of an entertaining – and moving – story with DCeased. One of my only complaints has been that the short issue count forces the story to move incredibly fast, and neglects us of the opportunity to see what’s taking place with other heroes. Well, this issue will remedy that. I’m looking forward to seeing these specific characters in this situation… but if the title has any indication of what the story will feature, I doubt it will be a positive outcome for our heroes.
Batman News Critic: Casper
Doomsday Clock #11
The critically acclaimed series by the renowned team of writer Geoff Johns and artist Gary Frank marches toward its conclusion. In this penultimate issue, the truth behind “Rebirth” is revealed as Batman searches for the one person he believes can help him save the world…Rorschach!
Written by Geoff Johns
Pencils and Inks by Gary Frank
Colored by Brad Anderson
Cover by Brad Anderson and Gary Frank
Josh’s Stance: I know I complain about the release schedule and how hard it is to remember what takes place from one issue to the next, but Geoff Johns and Gary Frank are delivering some incredible work with Doomsday Clock. Including this issue, there’s only two issues left. Despite feeling epic in many ways, it also feels as though we haven’t hit that peak, defining moment yet. I have to wonder if Johns is going to go out with a bang, or just use the narrative as a transition to what will take place in the greater DC universe? Let’s hope for the former…
Batman News Critic: Jay
Justice League #31
“The Justice Doom War” part two! The culmination of Lex Luthor’s plan hinges on his beating the Justice League to the prize, ratcheting up the peril as the Year of the Villain continues! The Totality has shattered and its pieces have been tossed across space and time. Thus, the Justice League must also split apart, forming three search teams to comb the past, present, and future to re-combine the Totality before the Legion of Doom can get its villainous hands on the cosmic weapon. What allies will our heroes find in these other timelines? In the future, it’s the Last Boy on Earth, Kamandi! But in the past, there are the familiar faces of the Justice Society of America!
Written by Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Jorge Jimenez
Colored by Alejandro Sanchez
Cover by Francis Manapul
Josh’s Stance: Aside from Geoff Johns’ Darkseid War, this is easily the best Justice League has been in years! Scott Snyder is delivering some of the most entertaining work he’s ever done, and if you haven’t been reading Justice League since he took the reins, then you’re really missing out!
Batman News Critic: Brian
Batman/ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III #5
Batman and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles think they’ve figured out how to tear apart Krang’s Combined Multiverse and restore their reality. But Krang has planned this moment for years. With his robot army, he’s ready to destroy them all. And if Batman can’t remember the last missing piece in his life, there may be no hope left!
Written by James Tynion IV
Pencils and Inks by Kevin Eastman and Freddie E. Williams II
Colored by Jeremy Colwell
Cover by Jeremy Colwell and Freddie E. Williams II
Josh’s Stance: Things are starting to wind down here, and I’m wondering how much it will impact the entertainment value of the book. I’ve enjoyed this book so far, but I know this story isn’t necessarily for everyone. Personally, some of the standout elements have been when Williams and Eastman team-up to deliver the art, so I’m excited to see both men credited for this issue!
Batman News Critic: Jay
Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy #1
Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy are taking their show on the road in this new miniseries! They’ll have to evade villains and heroes alike while they explore their relationship and unpack their time and experiences at Sanctuary. Set after the events of HEROES IN CRISIS and smack in the middle of “Year of the Villain,” it’s a journey across the DC Universe that will change their friendship forever…if they live that long!
Written by Jody Houser
Pencils and Inks by Adriana Melo
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Elena Casagrande and Mikel Janin
Josh’s Stance: I have a lot of opinions concerning the mere concept of this book. There is a story to be told here, but it doesn’t appear as though that’s the story DC is going to tell. With Harley becoming more and more heroic – especially in the various kids/ young adult lines – I feel as though DC just needs to make that same transition in the main continuity. Make Harley “good.” She doesn’t need to be a full-fledged hero, but having her straddle this line and act one way or another whenever it’s convenient for a story is annoying.
This book is also the perfect opportunity to take advantage of this change as well. I know we all have our thoughts on Heroes in Crisis, but it is the perfect story to create a valid excuse for both Harley and Ivy to change their perspective on their lifestyle. This could be a great, poignant story… Unfortunately, based on the solicitation, it almost appears as though DC is just going to make a pointless, slap-stick comedy. I’d say I’m surprised, but I’m not.
Batman News Critic: Nick
Batman vs Ra’s al Ghul #1
Gotham City is under siege by terrorists, and Batman is determined to find the source. But when Boston Brand tries to intervene, he discovers an even more disturbing and deadly truth: the terrorists are led by an inhuman monster. Ra’s al Ghul has volunteered his own private security force to aid the GCPD, and now they are the only thing standing between nuclear terror and the townspeople!
But al Ghul’s true goal is hidden from everyone’s eyes. He will destroy the city and kill Batman—this time for good. Watching in horror is…Bruce Wayne?
Written by Neal Adams
Art by Neal Adams
Cover by Neal Adams
Josh’s Stance: Look… Neal Adams is a legend for many reasons, but some of these legends that have come back recently to pen stories haven’t really delivered the goods. That being said, the plot sounds intriguing, and I’m willing to bite. I’m hoping for the best, but I’m not going to hold my breath.
Batman News Critic: Nick
“YOU DON’T HAVE TO THANK US”
Harley Quinn #65
After an unimaginable loss, “The Trials of Harley Quinn” come to a screeching halt. As Harley attempts to pick up the pieces and move forward, Mirand’r comes to her with a new offer…one that she can’t refuse!
Written by Sam Humphries
Pencils and Inks by Sami Basri
Colored by Hi-Fi
Cover by Guillem March and Arif Prianto
Josh’s Stance: I’m still not reading Harley Quinn. I’ve found it hard to jive with the book ever since Humphries took over. That’s not a dig at him, just an acknowledgment that the humor and storytelling isn’t really connecting with me. I’ve popped in a few times to check issues out here and there, but for now, I’m going to get my Harley fix through DCeased and possibly Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy. Who knows? Maybe Matina will convince me to check it out… Granted, I do have a feeling that DC is going to watch the sales for all of these various Harley Quinn books we’re getting in the coming months, and let them serve as a test for a possible change in direction on the main title.
Batman News Critic: Matina
- Additional releases from DC Comics: Doom Patrol: Weight of the Worlds #3, The Dreaming #3, The Green Lantern #3, Legion of Superheroes: Milennium #1, Lois Lane #3, Supergirl #33, and Superman: Up in the Sky #3.
GRAPHIC NOVEL WATCH:
Batgirl of Burnside Omnibus – She’s packing her bags, crossing the bridge and heading to Gotham’s coolest neighborhood: Burnside. And when a freak fire burns up her costume and gear, Babs has the chance to become a whole new Batgirl! But she barely slips on her new costume before Batgirl starts trending as Gotham’s first viral vigilante—and attracting a new wave of enemies who want her social-media spotlight for themselves. Collects BATGIRL #35-52, ANNUAL #3, BATGIRL: ENDGAME #1 and more!
Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass – With just five dollars and a knapsack to her name, 15-year-old Harleen Quinzel is sent to live in Gotham City. She’s not worried, though she’s battled a lot of hard situations as a kid, and knows her determination and outspokenness will carry her through life in the most dangerous city in the world. And when Gotham’s finest drag queen, Mama, takes her in, it seems like Harley has finally found a place to grow into her most “true true” with new best friend Ivy at Gotham High. But when Mama’s drag cabaret becomes the next victim in the wave of gentrification that’s taking over the neighborhood, Harley’s fortune takes another turn.
Now Harleen is mad. In turning her anger into action, she is faced with two choices: join activist Ivy, who’s campaigning to make the neighborhood a better place to live, or team up with her anarchist friend Joker, who plans to take down Gotham one corporation at a time.
From Eisner Award and Caldecott Honor-winning author Mariko Tamaki (This One Summer) and Eisner Award-nominated artist Steve Pugh comes a coming-of-age story about choices, consequences, and how a weird kid from Gotham goes about defining her world for herself.