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July 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

MAN-EATERS #1

JUL180103

(W) Chelsea Cain (A) Kate Niemczyk (CA) Lia Miternique

Publisher: Image Comics

Eisner-nominated and New York Times bestselling thriller writer CHELSEA CAIN returns to comics with a new ONGOING SERIES! 
A mutation in Toxoplasmosis causes menstruating women to turn into ferocious killer wildcats-easily provoked and extremely dangerous. As panic spreads and paranoia takes root, the fate of the world rides on the shoulders of one twelve-year-old girl. Part Cat People, part The Handmaid’s Tale, MAN-EATERS will have everyone talking.  

From the creative team behind the Eisner-nominated series Mockingbird: writer CHELSEA CAIN, artist KATE NIEMCZYK, colorist RACHELLE ROSENBERG, letterer JOE CARAMAGNA, and joined by LIA MITERNIQUE, KATIE LANE, and STELLA GREENVOSS.

This September… the cat wants in.

MAN-EATERS sounds like a wild melting pot of ideas and genres. Name dropping The Handmaid’s Tale in the solicit has me all tense and conditioned for extreme emotional turmoil (still counting down the minutes until the season finale) but who knows what will happen in a were-cat world? Also, you know you want the variant cover with actual sparkles on it.

 

Cemetery Beach #1

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(W) Warren Ellis (A/CA) Jason Howard

Publisher: Image Comics

From the creators of the acclaimed TREES graphic novels, which are currently being adapted for television, comes something completely different. A professional pathfinder, his only ally a disaffected young murderess, breaks out of a torture cell in pursuit of his worst extraction scenario ever: escaping on foot across a sprawling and secret off-world colony established a hundred years ago and filled with generations of lunatics. WARREN ELLIS & JASON HOWARD ignite a high-speed new action serial.

Some may say it’s a slow burn, I’ve really enjoyed what I’ve read of Trees (still need to catch up!) and I’m thrilled for the creators that the series has been picked up to be a TV show. I didn’t know they were also working on this as well, but Cemetery Beach sounds like it could be another quality series from that Ellis and Howard. If you’ve not seen it already, I definitely recommend checking out the preview in this month’s Image+ magazine (free with a copy of Previews). In an interview, Jason Howard mentions being excited to lean more into drawing cool sci-fi tech and that shows. The double-page spread is gorgeous.

 

My Heroes Have Always Been Junkies (Hardcover)

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(W) Ed Brubaker (A/CA) Sean Phillips

Publisher: Image Comics

Teenage Ellie has always had romantic ideas about drug addicts. The tragic, artistic souls drawn to needles and pills have been an obsession since the death of her junkie mother ten years ago. But when Ellie lands in an upscale rehab clinic where nothing is what it appears to be, she’ll find another, more dangerous romance… and find out how easily drugs and murder go hand-in-hand.

MY HEROES HAVE ALWAYS BEEN JUNKIES is a seductive coming-of-age story, a pop and drug culture-fueled tale of a young girl seeking darkness-and what she finds there. This gorgeous, must-have hardback is the first original graphic novel from ED BRUBAKER and SEAN PHILLIPS, the bestselling creators of CRIMINAL, KILL OR BE KILLED, THE FADE OUT, FATALE, and INCOGNITO.

Brubaker and Phillips are one of the most consistently great team-ups in modern comics. I’ll try anything the two of them cook up and the description of this one sounds right up their alley. I’ve yet to find a source confirming Elisabeth Breitweiser as the colorist on this but I hope she is! Her work with Phillips’ drawings has been truly magnificent.

 

Heroes in Crisis #1

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(W) Tom King (A/CA) Clay Mann

Publisher: DC Comics

There’s a new kind of crisis threatening the heroes of the DC Universe, ripped from real-world headlines by C.I.A.-operative-turned-comics-writer Tom King: How does a superhero handle PTSD? Welcome to Sanctuary, an ultra-secret hospital for superheroes who’ve been 
traumatized by crime-fighting and cosmic combat. But something goes inexplicably wrong when many patients wind up dead, with two well-known operators as the prime suspects:
Harley Quinn and Booster Gold! It’s up to the DC Trinity of Superman, Wonder Woman and 
Batman to investigate-but can they get the job done in the face of overwhelming opposition?

I think Tom King and Mitch Gerads have done an incredible job bringing mental health to the forefront of comics with their Miracle Man series and I’m so glad that DC is continuing to shine that spotlight (with Tom King, no less). I love the idea pitched in this solicit — here’s hoping this team knocks it out of the park. If you’re not already reading Miracle Man, now is the time.

 

Batman: Damned #1 (of 3)

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(W) Brian Azzarello (A/CA) Lee Bermejo

Publisher: DC Comics

DC BLACK LABEL, the highly anticipated new imprint from DC Comics, starts here!
The Joker is dead. 
There is no doubt about that. But whether Batman finally snapped his scrawny neck or some other sinister force in Gotham City did the deed is still a mystery.
Problem is, Batman can’t remember… and the more he digs into this labyrinthine case, the more his mind starts to doubt everything he’s uncovering. 
So who better to set him straight than… John Constantine? Problem with that is as much as John loves a good mystery, he loves messing with people’s heads even more. So with John’s “help,” the pair will delve into the sordid underbelly of Gotham as they race toward the mind-blowing truth of who murdered The Joker.
BATMAN: DAMNED is a bimonthly super-natural horror story told by two of comics’ greatest modern creators-a visceral thrill-ride that proudly puts the “black” in BLACK LABEL.

DC went out on a limb with their Young Animal imprint and those books have been super fun. The premise for their newest imprint, Black Label, is different but I am cautiously optimistic. I’d love to see a great, new supernatural Batman horror story.

 

Moth & Whisper #1

JUL181504

(W) Ted Anderson (A/CA) Jen Hickman

Publisher: Aftershock Comics

NEW SERIES!

Everyone knows that the two greatest thieves in the city are the Moth and the Whisper. Very few know that the Moth and the Whisper disappeared six months ago. And what nobody knows is that the new Moth and Whisper are actually one person pretending to be both of them. One supremely skilled but uncertain young genderfluid thief: Niki, the child of the Moth and the Whisper. 

Niki has been trained by their parents in the arts of stealth and infiltration, but they’re still just a teenager, and now they’re alone, searching for their parents in a hostile cyberpunk dystopia. Corporations run the streets while crime lords like Ambrose Wolfe run the alleys-identity is a commodity and privacy is impossible. The truth about Niki’s parents and their disappearance is out there, but can Niki survive long enough to find it?

A YA cyberpunk thriller starring a genderqueer super-thief, MOTH & WHISPER is the brainchild of Ted Anderson (My Little Pony, Adventure Time) and Jen Hickman (Jem and the Holograms, The Dead), that just HAD to be told at AfterShock!

The B cover of Moth & Whisper shows Niki with their low-poly style mask and long-exposure light trails for eyes. I don’t want to take away from what sounds like a unique story with a rad protagonist, but I also want you to know that I am all about that cyberpunk a e s t h e t i c.

June 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Black Badge #1

JUN181214

(W/CA) Matt Kindt (A) Tyler Jenkins

Publisher: Boom! Studios

Matt Kindt and Tyler Jenkins, the team behind Grass Kings, reunite for a new ongoing series about a top-secret, elite branch of boy scouts tasked by the government to take on covert missions.

Among their organization, the Black Badges are the elite; the best of the best. They are feared even by the other badges. The missions they take are dangerous, and they will only get worse as their leader’s attention is split between their mission objectives and tracking down a lost team member. A team member who disappeared years ago, presumed dead. 

A haunting look at foreign policy, culture wars and isolationism through the lens of kids who know they must fix the worlds that adults have broken.

I’m so glad to see Kindt and Jenkins back at it together again so quickly after Grass Kings wrapped up. I was excited to see what the two were cooking up and this looks great. Moonrise Kingdom keeps coming to mind but I imagine it’ll be quite a bit darker than that. I will definitely be grabbing the Lemire variant, too!

 

The Seeds #1

JUN180299

(W) Ann Nocenti (A/CA) David Aja

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

The bees are swarming. What do they know that we don’t?

The rich have built walls around their wealth and scramble into escape rockets. The romantic and the ruthless cross over into the lawless wilds of Zone-B. A few cantankerous aliens have come to collect the last dregs of humanity’s essence for the celestial embryo bank. One of them falls in love. 

Astra is an idealistic journalist who stumbles into the story of a lifetime, only to realize that if she reports it, she’ll destroy the last hope of a dying world. How far will she go to get her story? An eco-fiction tech-thriller where flora and fauna have begun to mutate, The Seeds is also a story of love beyond race and gender, and of the resilience of both human and animal kind. 

A new four-issue series, by award-winning artist David Aja (Hawkeye, Immortal Iron Fist) and filmmaker, journalist, and comics writer Ann Nocenti (Daredevil, Catwoman). 

I’ve certainly missed seeing David Aja interiors after his run on Hawkeye and was very excited to see this new mini in Previews. Looking forward to reading Ann Nocenti for the first time — there seems to be a lot going on in the last sentence of this solicitation and I’m on board!

 

Sheets

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(W/A/CA) Brenna Thummler

Publisher: Lion Forge

Marjorie Glatt feels like a ghost.

A practical thirteen-year-old girl who is left in charge of the family laundry business after her mother’s unexpected death. Her daily routine features unforgiving customers, her grieving father, and the fastidious Mr. Saubertuck who is committed to destroying everything she’s worked for.

Wendell IS a ghost.

A boy who lost his life much too young, his daily routine features ineffective death therapy, a sheet-dependent identity, and a dangerous need to seek purpose in the forbidden human world.

Sheets illustrates the determination of a young girl to fight, even when all parts of her world seem to be conspiring against her. It proves that second chances are possible whether life feels over or life is over. But above all, it is a story of the forgiveness and unlikely friendship that can only transpire inside a haunted laundromat.

Maybe it’s just the wealth of fond memories I have for 90s Nickelodeon Halloween specials, but I’ve always had a thing for light-hearted “spooky” stuff. Granted, this book seems to be tackling some serious subject matter but I think you know what I mean. I really enjoyed what I saw in Previews and the tone of this book looks right up my alley.

 

Stairway

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(W) Matt Hawkins (A/CA) Raffaele Ienco

Publisher: Image Comics

When a postgraduate student discovers a way to unlock information hidden deep in our “junk DNA,” parts of bio-schematics and other pieces of baffling data are found. This discovery triggers the largest scientific initiative since the Manhattan Projects, with teams of scientists working to collect and collate this information. But will they find a stairway to heaven, or will they unleash something that will kill us all?

It’s the first I’ve heard of these creators but this premise sounds like the synopsis for a Black Mirror episode and that’s enough for me! Here’s to hoping it leaves me with just a tiny bit less existential dread than that, though.

 

Cold Spots #1

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(W) Cullen Bunn (A/CA) Mark Torres

Publisher: Image Comics

MINISERIES PREMIERE! Psychological terror, the undead, and a supernaturally bitter cold come together in this spine-tingling new series from CULLEN BUNN (REGRESSION, Harrow County) and MARK TORRES (Zombies vs. Robots: Undercity). 
10 years ago, Dan Kerr turned his back on his wife and unborn daughter. Now, both mother and child have gone missing, and Dan must face cosmic terrors to find them again. He soon finds that ghosts stir when his estranged daughter is near. And as the dead grow restless, the cold deepens…

At this point, I might as well just say “look, Cullen Bunn is writing another horror mini-series. You know what to do.”

I will. You know.

 

Black Hammer Library Edition Volume 1 HC

JUN180320

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Dean Ormston (A) Various

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

The first chapter of the highly acclaimed, Eisner Award-winning superhero saga in deluxe, oversized hardcover format.

Mysteriously banished from existence by a multiversal event, the old superheroes of Spiral City now lead simple lives on a bizarre farm from which there is no escape! But as they employ all of their super abilities to free themselves from this strange purgatory, a mysterious stranger works to bring them back into action for one last adventure!

Collects the first and second volumes of Black Hammer, and Black Hammer: Giant Sized Annual in a deluxe, hardcover, and oversized format with a new cover, sketchbook extras, and more!

Black Hammer may just be the best superhero book on the stands for my money. It definitely deserves the Library Edition hardcover treatment it’s getting. If you’re not reading this book, this is a great place to start! Also, I think this is the first time the annual is being collected, so even better!

May 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

The New World #1

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(W) Ales Kot (A/CA) Tradd Moore, Heather Moore (CA) Tom Muller

Publisher: Image Comics

The United States of America-after the Second Civil War. 
Two lovers meet. One: a straight-edge vegan hacker anarchist boy with a penchant for messing with the State. The other: a chaotic, hedonistic cop with a reality TV show and a license to kill. This really shouldn’t happen-and yet, somehow, it does. And soon, the entire state of New California is after them.

This ballistic sci-fi action romance miniseries-in the vein of Mad Max and Romeo and Juliet-from ALEŠ KOT, TRADD MOORE, and HEATHER MOORE begins with a massive-sized debut issue, and features a backup comic introducing the talents of AARON STEWART-AHN and SUNANDO C!

Look at that cover. Tom Muller’s designs (especially when coupled with great like this) just has a way of oozing style. I love it. Also, give me some more of them good, good Ales Kot “America is going off the rails and here’s what it could look like in this not-out-of-the-question, semi-dystopian, near future” books.

 

Catwoman #1

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(W/A/CA) Joëlle Jones

Publisher: DC Comics

The wedding night’s barely over, but Catwoman’s back on the streets, this time to expose a copycat who’s pulling heists around Gotham City. As Selina cracks the whip on her former criminal cohorts, she’s attracting unwanted attention from one of Gotham’s most dangerous groups. The mob? Nope. Try the GCPD. And as if the Bat-Bride didn’t have enough problems, don’t miss the debut of an all-new villain determined to make trouble for all nine of Selina’s lives. Don’t miss the start of an all-new monthly series written and illustrated by Eisner Award-nominee Joëlle Jones!

When it was announced that Joëlle Jones was going to be writing and drawing the new Catwoman book, it just made sense. Jones’ style is perfect for the aesthetic and tone of Catwoman. If you’ve never read her Ladykiller series, go pick that up now.

 

Captain America #1

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(W) Ta-Nehisi Coates (A) Leinil Francis Yu (CA) Alex Ross

Publisher: Marvel Comics

IT IS WINTER IN AMERICA. 
For over 70 years, he has stood in stalwart defense of our country and its people. But in the aftermath of Hydra’s takeover of the nation, Captain America is a figure of controversy, carrying a tarnished shield…and a new enemy is rising!
Who are the Power Elite? And how do they intend to co-opt and corrupt the symbol that is Captain America?
Rated T+

Hot off the heels of Infinity War, I’m ready for a new Marvel book and Captain America looks to be the book for that. Ta-Nehisi Coates has done a spectacular job with his run on Black Panther and it’s exciting to see him writing another series. I can’t wait to see where he takes a character like Captain America. Also, that Alex Ross wraparound cover is stunning.

 

The Quantum Age #1

MAY180320

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Wilfredo Torres (CA) Dave Stewart

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Set in the world of the Eisner Award-winning Black Hammer series-but a thousand years in the future-a collection of superheroes, inspired by the legendary heroes of Black Hammer Farm, must band together to save the planet from an authoritarian regime. A young Martian must find a way to reform The Quantum League to save the world while solving the riddle of what happened to the great heroes of the twentieth century. Black Hammer creator Jeff Lemire (The Terrifics) is joined by Wilfredo Torres (Legion) in illustrating while Dave Stewart (Hellboy) adds his colorist skills to the mix. 
o Based on Jeff Lemire’s Eisner Award-winning series!

The Black Hammer-verse has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it? I absolutely love that Lemire and the other Black Hammer creators have gone the way of Mike Mignola’s Hellboy and really expanded this universe. I will be on board for any books in this universe and cannot wait to get my hands on them.

 

Bone Parish #1

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(W) Cullen Bunn (A) Mustafa Karasu (CA) Lee Garbett

Publisher: Boom! Studios

Cullen Bunn (Empty Man, The Unsound) returns to BOOM! Studios with a chilling necromantic horror story! A new drug is sweeping through the streets of New Orleans.one made from the ashes of the dead. Wars are being fought over who will control the supply, while the demand only rises. While the crime families wage war, users begin to experience terrifying visions of the dead coming back to life-through them.

That sounds sufficiently creepy, doesn’t it? Bone Parish comes out in July but that’s late enough in the summer where I’ll already be starting to think about my favorite month of the year, October. Yes, just the anticipation of that time of year gets me excited for good horror and after reading The Unsound, I know Cullen Bunn is capable of that. In the lead up, I think it may be time for me to finally check out The Empty Man and Regression.

April 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Proxima Centauri #1

(W/A/CA) Farel Dalrymple (CA) Wes Craig

Publisher: Image Comics

“PROXIMA CENTAURI,” Part One-4.243 light-years from Earth, the teenage wizard adventurer Sherwood Breadcoat is stuck in the confounding spectral zone on the manufactured dimensional sphere, Proxima Centauri, looking for escape and a way back to his brother while dealing with his confusing emotions, alien creatures, and all sorts of unknown, fantastic dangers.

In this issue The Scientist H. Duke sends Sherwood on a salvage mission and gives counsel to the troubled boy in his charge.

PROXIMA CENTAURI will be six issues of PSYCHEDELIC SCIENCE FANTASY ACTION COMIC BOOK DRAMA starring Sherwood Breadcoat, “The Scientist” Duke Herzog, Dr. EXT the Time Traveler, the ghost M. Parasol, Shakey the Space Wizard, and Dhog Dahog.

Farel Dalrymple doing sci-fi! Need I say more? This sounds like some pulpy greatness and I can’t wait to get my hands on this as well as Image’s collection of Dalyrmple’s It Will All Hurt.

 

Shanghai Red #1

(W) Christopher Sebela (A/CA) Josh Hixon, Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou

Publisher: Image Comics

Red is one of hundreds shanghaied out of Portland in the late 1800s. Drugged, kidnapped, and sold to a ship’s captain, she wakes up on a boat headed out to sea for years, unable to escape or even reveal who she truly is. Now she’s coming back in a boat covered in blood to find her family and track down the men responsible for stealing her life out from under her. Eisner-nominated writer CHRISTOPHER SEBELA (High Crimes, Heartthrob, We(l)come Back), JOSHUA HIXSON (The Black Woods) and HASSAN OTSMANE-ELHAOU (Felix & Macabber) bring you a tale of revenge, family, and identity that stretches from the deck of a ship outside Shanghai all the way to the bleak streets and secret tunnels of Portland, Oregon.

I’ve been looking forward to this one since it was announced at Image Expo earlier this year. The buzz has been good and I’ve enjoyed what I’ve seen of Hixson’s art. Don’t be fooled by his wild tales of staying in America’s Clown Motel fool you — Christopher Sebela is a solid writer and I’m looking forward to where he and the team are taking this one.

 

Bloodstrike #0

(W/A/CA) Michel Fiffe

Publisher: Image Comics

“BRUTALISTS,” Part One-In the spirit of Bloodstrike’s groundbreaking carnage, the creator behind the indie hit Copra shines a light on Image’s most extreme series. Witness the origin of Cabbot as he launches his undead strikeforce upon the world!

I can’t say I’ve ever had any interest in Bloodstrike before now but putting Michel Fiffe’s talent on this book definitely changes that. Not to mention, with books like Prophet and Supreme: Blue Rose, Image has a stellar track record of reviving 90s Rob Liefeld comics.

 

Luisa Now and Then

(W/A/CA) Carole Maurel (W) Mariko Tamaki

Publisher: Humanoids Inc

A disillusioned photographer has a chance encounter with her lost teenage self who has miraculously traveled into the future. Together, both women ultimately discover who they really are, finding the courage to live life by being true to themselves. Luisa’s sexuality is revealed to be a defining element of her identity, one which both of her selves must come to terms with. A time-traveling love story that turns coming-of-age conventions upside down, Luisa is a universal queer romance for the modern age.

It can be pretty difficult to find avenues of the time travel narrative that aren’t already well worn-down by now. Luisa Now and Then sounds to be setting itself apart and creating something truly unique.

 

By Night #1

(W) John Allison (A/CA) Christine Larsen

Publisher: Boom! Studios

Eisner-Award winning author John Allison (Giant Days) and artist Christine Larsen (Adventure Time) join forces for a story about coming home, discovering identity, and accidently smashing a hole to another dimension.
Aspiring documentarian (and actual Chemistry major) Jane has recently reunited with her former best friend Heather, amateur urban explorer. When a trip into an abandoned industrial building leads them to another world, their plan begins to unfold.create a documentary about the world and become filthy, filthy rich. The other side of the portal is filled with monsters, magic and a chance for a whole new life. All they have to do is step through…

The premise on this seems rad and the preview looks fun. Looking forward to diving in with this team of creators!

March 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Where We Live: A Benefit for the Survivors in Las Vegas

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Mike Allred, Brian Michael Bendis, Ivan Brandon, Kurt Busiek, Amy Chu, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Neil Gaiman, Kieron Gillen, Mike Mignola, Mark Millar, Greg Pak, James Robinson, Gail Simone, Brandon Graham, Rob Williams, Various (A) Rafael Albuquerque, Mike Allred, Paul Azaceta, Cliff Chiang, Geof Darrow, Tess Fowler, Brian Haberlin, Phil Hester, Joëlle Jones, Ariela Kristantina, Jeff Lemire, Jamie McKelvie, Michael Avon Oeming, Sean Phillips, Darick Robertson, Bill Sienkiewicz, Brandon Graham, Javier Pulido, Various (A/CA) J. H. Williams

“On October 1, 2017, Las Vegas, Nevada suffered the worst mass shooting in modern American history, resulting in 58 deaths and over 500 injured. It broke my heart. Las Vegas is my home. I felt like something needed to be done to help in a unique way.”-JH WILLIAMS III, Artist & Curating Editor

This “unique way” was the genesis of the WHERE WE LIVE anthology – a riveting collection of both fictional stories and actual eye-witness accounts told by an all-star lineup of the top talent working in comics today.  All the creators have graciously volunteered their time and talent to help bring some sense to this senseless act and, in the process, raise money for the survivors and their families.

The book will include a variety of perspectives with key themes exploring gun violence, common sense gun control, value of a compassionate society, mental health stigmatization, aftermath of tragedy and how individuals and communities persevere, and an appreciation of Las Vegas as a vibrant community.

WHERE WE LIVE also features stories from local writers and artists as they relate their personal experiences and reactions to this tragedy.

One hundred percent of the proceeds for the WHERE WE LIVE anthology will be donated to an existing GoFundMe campaign for the survivors in Las Vegas.

It’s heartening to see so many creators contribute to this anthology. The description above speaks for itself and I will certainly be putting an order in for this collection.

 

Dismantlers #1

Publisher: Black Mask Comics

(W) Aria Baci (A/CA) Ashely A. Woods

In a galaxy where terraforming is the most common form of real estate development, a highly skilled team of “dismantlers” travels to failed sites and salvages what’s left of them.   

But that’s not the hardest part of their job. Because relationships with each other can be even more complicated than transforming entire planets.  

This is not a story of a prestigious Federation or of a powerful Empire, but of the menial laborers who make it all possible, the unglamorous characters who work behind the scenes of galactic expansion. This is a story of their pillow talk, their break room banter, and their totally unforeseen fist fights with the pirates who jack their job sites out from under them.  

From artist Ashley A Woods (NIOBE: She Is Life) and next breakout writer Aria Baci comes an all new fleet of characters to fall in love with.

That third paragraph’s got me. I love slice-of-life sci-fi. Sure, I like a good space opera but there’s something about using a science fiction setting as a vehicle for telling grounded, human stories. I’m not familiar with this creative team, but I will be looking for their other work while waiting for Dismantlers to hit the shelves. Also, if you like the sound of this one, maybe check out the manga Planetes.

 

Barrier #1-5

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Brian K. Vaughan (A/CA) Marcos Martin, Muntsa Vicente

From the Eisner Award-winning team behind THE PRIVATE EYE, BARRIER is an unconventional drama about violence, language, and illegal immigration…with a shocking sci-fi twist. After debuting on PanelSyndicate.com, this critically acclaimed five-part miniseries finally comes to print, exclusively from Image Comics. After making the massive, 50-plus-page first issue available to mature readers for FREE on Free Comic Day, this special collector’s edition of the first issue is being released in a larger size to match the next four issues being released WEEKLY throughout the rest of May! Printed in its original “landscape” format (side-stapled for convenient shelving!) and graced with gorgeous cardstock covers, each comic is meant to be a durable work of art, and there are no plans for these print issues to ever be collected, so the only way to own your own copies of this groundbreaking story is by supporting your friendly neighborhood comic shop!

It’s cool to see Image Comics putting out more physical editions of Panel Syndicate’s landscape format digital comics. The hardcover collection of The Private Eye turned out really nicely and it will be cool to see these serialized in print. There’s not a whole lot of detail on the actual story here (though you can go check it out on Panel Syndicate’s website) but I’m definitely interested to see this team’s follow up to The Private Eye. As mentioned in the this solicit, you can grab the first issue for free on Free Comic Book Day (the first Saturday in May will be here before you know it!) and the series will be released weekly afterwords. Now I just need to figure out how I’m going to bag and board these!

 

It Will All Hurt

Publisher: Image Comics

(W/A/CA) Farel Dalrymple

ADVANCE SOLICIT! A weird, sad, silly, sketchy, and dreamy watercolor fantasy-action quest in which Alemendra Clementine and her crew of anti-social adventurers all come together on a psych-apocalyptic world to take down an evil wizard. This Eisner Award-nominated webcomic began as a loose stream-of-consciousness exercise and exploration of the comic book medium and takes place in the same world as FAREL DALRYMPLE’s The Wrenchies. Collects IT WILL ALL HURT #1-3, plus all six chapters of the webcomic.

Farel Dalrymple’s work is rad. I’ve really enjoyed just about everything I’ve seen from him and somehow I ended up missing this when it was first published. It’s great to see this getting collected and hopefully it will tide me over until his new series, Proxima Centauri, is printed by Image.

 

Walk Through Hell #1

Publisher: Aftershock Comics

(W) Garth Ennis (A) Goran Sudzuka (CA) Andy Clarke

So these two FBI agents walk into a warehouse… 

Special Agents Shaw and McGregor handle the routine cases nowadays, which is just the way Shaw likes it. She’s pushing 40, a borderline burnout, the ghastly memories of her last investigation still clinging like shadows. McGregor is younger, more dedicated, hanging onto some measure of idealism whatever the world might throw at him.

When two fellow agents go missing inside a Long Beach warehouse, Shaw and McGregor are sent to investigate. But what they find waiting is far from routine, as the local police have already discovered to their cost. Before the night is out, our heroes will encounter terror beyond their most appalling nightmares-in a place where the night may never end at all.

A new kind of horror story for modern America, written by Garth Ennis (Preacher, The Boys, Crossed) and drawn by Goran Sudzuka (Y: The Last Man, Hellblazer)

Yeah, all right. I wanna know what that terror is. The solicit is only laying down a few bread crumbs but there’s definitely potential in this premise and I’ll be giving it a read. Here’s hoping for some original horror!

Panini NBA Player of the Day 2018

The Panini NBA Player of the Day Promotion runs Monday, March 5th  through April 3rd!

The prizes this year are amazing. Winners have chances at:

  • Special Player of the Day Promotional Card Packs [Click here for a preview of this year’s set]
  • A Signed Henry Ellenson (Detroit Pistons) Photo 
  • Store grand prize: A numbered Andre Drummond autograph card plus entry into Panini’s national sweepstakes where you could win a day with an NBA player and a $250.00 shopping spree at Fanfare

How to Play

Step 1 – You can enter by purchasing a pack of 2017-18 Panini brand NBA Cards. This includes popular brands such as Donruss, Hoops, Revolution and others. There is a no-purchase-necessary option as well (ask us to see the official rules for details).

Step 2 – To win, you must open a pack of cards you have purchased in front of a store employee. If you “pull” the highlighted Panini NBA Player of the Day or any of the Wild Cards (Damian Lillard, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant) you are a daily winner and will receive two special promotional packs on the spot.

You can also become an automatic daily winner by purchasing a box of any eligible product. 

Each time you are a daily winner you earn one raffle entry towards being that week’s “weekly winner”.

You may only be a daily winner once a day and up to seven days a week. 

Step 3 – Four times during the promotion we will randomly select one of the daily winners as a weekly prize winner and award a prize package from a kit provided by Panini. Weekly winners will then be put into a raffle to win the store’s grand prize, an autographed Andre Drummond card.

Step 4 – At the conclusion of the 30-day promotion, we will randomly select one of the four weekly winners as the store grand prize winner. The winner will be awarded the grand prize, an autographed Andre Drummond card, and entered into the Panini national sweepstakes where they have a chance to spend a day with an NBA player and a $250.00 shopping spree at Fanfare!

Step 5 – After we have selected our grand prize winner, we will then do a drawing for our runner-up prize, an autographed photo of Detroit Piston Henry Ellenson! All of our daily winners, with the exception of our grand prize winner, will be entered in this drawing!

Here is a look at both our grand prize and our runner-up prize:

 

First up, the grand prize (an autographed Andre Drummon card):

 

And our awesome runner-up prize, an autographed picture from Detroit Piston Henry Ellenson:

Advance Review (Spoiler-free!): Gideon Falls #1

Expected Release Date: Wednesday, March 7th
(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Andrea Sorrentino

A brand-new ongoing series from the acclaimed bestselling creative team of Old Man Logan and Green Arrow! The lives of a reclusive young man obsessed with a conspiracy in the city’s trash, and a washed-up Catholic priest arriving in a small town full of dark secrets, become intertwined around the mysterious legend of The Black Barn, an otherworldly building that is alleged to have appeared in both the city and the small town, throughout history, bringing death and madness in its wake. 

Rural mystery and urban horror collide in this character-driven meditation on obsession, mental illness, and faith.

Very shortly after I wrote about Gideon Falls in the last Previews post, we received an advanced copy for review. I mentioned how much the solicit made me think of Twin Peaks. Part of this may come from me steadily watching the series from the beginning as of this past October, but also because Lemire is an outspoken fan (check out his amazing print of Special Agent Dale Cooper) and The Black Barn sounding quite a bit like The Black Lodge.

Though it does share some similarities with Twin Peaks, I’m happy to report that Gideon Falls is very much its own work of art. And a work of art it is — Sorrentino’s panels are striking as ever with some truly beautiful page layouts. I’ve only seen bits of Sorrentino and Lemire’s work on their Green Arrow run, but reading Gideon Falls has definitely moved that up my backlog.

The first issue does a great job of both setting the scene for the series and introducing its (presumed) two main characters. As mentioned in my Previews post, Jeff Lemire is one of my favorite comic creators and I like to give his new works a shot whenever they come along. Gideon Falls is definitely a book that is staying on my pull list after the first issue and I’m looking forward to learning more about the characters, the world they’re living in, and the greater mystery at hand. Take me back to The Black Barn.

January 2018 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Gideon Falls #1

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Andrea Sorrentino

A brand-new ongoing series from the acclaimed bestselling creative team of Old Man Logan and Green Arrow! The lives of a reclusive young man obsessed with a conspiracy in the city’s trash, and a washed-up Catholic priest arriving in a small town full of dark secrets, become intertwined around the mysterious legend of The Black Barn, an otherworldly building that is alleged to have appeared in both the city and the small town, throughout history, bringing death and madness in its wake. 

Rural mystery and urban horror collide in this character-driven meditation on obsession, mental illness, and faith.

Even if I wasn’t automatically buying Lemire’s creator-owned work, this book seems tailor-made for me. The solicit is giving off some massive Twin Peaks vibes (ha, I love “The Black Barn”) and it’s great to see Andrea Sorrentino on art. I can’t wait for this one!

 

Prism Stalker #1

Publisher: Image Comics

(W/A/CA) Sloane Leong (CA) Darius Ou

For fans of Octavia Butler, Sailor Moon, and the biopunk horror of David Cronenberg comes PRISM STALKER, an ongoing sci-fi adventure series by SLOANE LEONG. 
Vep is a young refugee raised away from her devastated home planet as an indentured citizen in a foreign colony. She works tirelessly for her insectoid hosts, but there is no exit in sight in this viscous, dripping citynest. The eye of opportunity is closing. Her duty is to her family and her siblings, but what more can she do for them here? The answer appears faster than she is ready for.

From the snippet of setup we get in the solicit, this sounds pretty rad. I really enjoyed Sloane Leong’s work on From Under Mountains and I’m looking forward to see what this one is like! There’s a trailer for Prism Stalker you can check out here.

 

Doctor Star & The Kingdom of Lost Tomorrows #1

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Max Fiumara

This dual-narrative story set in the world of the Eisner-Award winning Black Hammer series chronicles the legacy of a Golden-Age superhero. An aged crime fighter desperately wants to reconnect with his estranged son, who he hoped would one day take the mantle of Doctor Star. Over the course of the story we learn his World War II-era origin, how he got his powers, his exciting astral adventures, the formation of some of Black Hammer’s greatest heroes, and more in this heartbreaking superhero tale about fathers and sons.

The Black Hammer universe’s version of Starman. That should enough to buy this book along with what I’ve seen of Max Fiumara’s art. If you’ve not read Black Hammer or its first spinoff, Sherlock Frankenstein & The Legion of Evil, jump on them now!

 

Eternity Girl #1

Publisher: DC Comics

(W) Magdalene Visaggio (A/CA) Sonny Liew

Caroline Sharp has been a lot of things, including both a superhero and a super-spy. But now, with those days behind her and her powers proving unreliable, Caroline finds herself stuck in a life weighed down by her depression and an inability to change. You see, Caroline is going to live forever, and there is no escape to be had. The very act of living reminds her that, to the rest of existence, she is an anomaly. All of that could change, however, when her old foe, Madame Atom, comes to her with an intriguing offer. Madame Atom can give Caroline the power to end her life; she just has to destroy the rest of the world.
This brand-new DC’s Young Animal miniseries spins out of the Milk Wars event, written by GLAAD Media Award-nominated writer Magdalene Visaggio (Kim and Kim) and illustrated by Eisner-winning artist Sonny Liew (The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye).

I’m still really digging DC’s Young Animal imprint and along with the new iterations of some of its titles — Cave Carson Has an Interstellar Eye and Shade the Changing Woman — comes Eternity Girl. I’m new to this creative team but the concept sounds great and I’m excited check out this addition to the Young Animal lineup.

 

Shock Anthology

Publisher: Aftershock Comics

(W) Neil Gaiman (A) Michael Zulli

AfterShock Comics continues to push boundaries by presenting its very first anthology collection featuring a slew of today’s top writers and artists. Presented in the European Album format (same as the recent Animosity: the Rise hardcover for LCSD), this handsome hardcover features the creative talents of Neil Gaiman, Michael Zulli, Charles Vess, Michael Gaydos, Andy Clarke, Andrew Robinson, Mike Carey, Jim Starlin, Phil Hester, Paul Jenkins, Dalibor Talajic, Bill Willingham, Travis Moore, Brian Azzarello, Francesco Francavilla, Cullen Bunn, Marc Guggenheim, Marguerite Bennett, Frank Tieri, Brian Stelfreeze and more! Cover art by John Cassaday! From the multiple Eisner and Havery Award-nominated editor of the classic Negative Burnanthology series.

I love anthologies and I love a good horror book. Slap the two together and toss a bunch of great creators in there and hopefully, you’ve got a stew goin’. 

 

Extremity #12

Publisher: Image Comics

(W/A/CA) Daniel Warren Johnson

SERIES FINALE
In this extra-sized finale, the Paznina and Roto go to war, with Thea caught in the middle. But in war, there are no winners…

All good things must come to an end, eh? I don’t know that I’m ready for this one. You better believe I will be on board for whichever project Daniel Warren Johnson does next.

MATT’S COUNTDOWN TO HALLOWEEN COMIC FEST – THE BIG DAY IS TOMORROW!

Halloween Comic Fest is tomorrow! We can’t wait to give you some awesome comics and check out your costumes this Saturday! Here is Matt with his final entry in our Countdown to Halloween Comic Fest blog series:

Hello Everyone! Well here we are. It’s been fun sharing all of the things I love with you guys, but all good things must come
to and end. So, as they say,  I’ve saved the best for last!

My final comic selection is master horror writer Junji Ito’s finest work Uzumaki (Spiral).

Uzumaki takes us to Kurozu-cho a coastal town faced with a curse; the shape of a spiral. The image of a spiral haunts citizens and drives them mad with obsession. They will do anything to make themselves closer to the spiral, even to the point of causing bodily harm to themselves. The madness of the spiral spreads and threatens the entire town with its all encompassing madness.

This is by far the creepiest book I’ve ever read in my life. It cements Junji Ito as one of the absolute greatest
minds horror has ever seen. After finishing this book I felt unsettled for days afterward. I have never seen or read anything quite like it.

It’s not a gore fest that grosses you out its a book that plays with you on a psychological level and makes things seem out of place. I cannot recommend this book enough if you want something scary!

Now, to turn away from the page and to the screen. Today’s film recommendation is one of my favorite recent horror movies, it is noneother than 2016’s The Void by writer/directors Jeremy Gillespie and Steven Kostanski. 

Did you enjoy The Thing and have been looking for something to scratch that itch since the 80’s?
Then you will love this movie! It’s one of the best movies I’ve seen in years and as a bonus it also has Lovecraftian themes.

The Void  is an impressive film about a cult that’s stalking an injured man. A local sheriff finds the man and takes him to a hospital to tend to his wounds. However, the hospital ends up not to be the safe haven it was intended to be as the cult members finally catch up. Madness begins to spread inside the hospital in the cult members presence and soon all hell breaks loose.

This film looks like it was pulled right out of the 80’s and seems like John Carpenter himself could have been its creator. It uses practical creature effects throughout the entire film which is a style that, sadly, is almost nonexistent now. The Void is currently on Netflix, and I cannot suggest it strongly enough.

Well thanks for reading these posts everyone. The horror genre means a great deal
to me. It’s always been there to help me along in my life and bring me joy . This year I wanted to share that passion with you and I hope you enjoyed yourselves along the way!

If you have any questions about the books or films I’ve written about in this blog series or just want to chat with me about this awesome genre please feel free. I’m (almost) always at the store
and more than willing to chat about what I love. Well thanks again everyone and have a happy Halloween!!!

MATT’S COUNTDOWN TO HALLOWEEN COMIC FEST – 2 DAYS TO GO!

Halloween Comic Fest is just two days away! We hope you’re all ready to show off your coolest costumes and get some free comics!
Here is Matt with today’s suggestions:

Hello everyone! Today’s comic recommendation is the vampire masterpiece 30 Days of Night by Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith.

You may already be familiar with the premise of this book due to its 2007 film adaptation. Just in case you aren’t though, this story takes place in a small town in Alaska that goes through full month stretches of no daylight. Aka: an all-a-vampire-can-eat buffet! The writing and art work flawlessly together to create a modern day vampire classic.

Today’s film recommendation is House of the Devil from writer/director Ti West.

This slow burning 80’s throwback film follows Samantha, a financially hard-up college student, who decides to take a strange babysitting job to help cover her expenses. She has so many warnings that taking the job is a bad idea, but more and more money thrown into the offer make it almost impossible for her to refuse.

Samantha eventually accepts the job and finds that her task is to watch over an elderly woman for an evening. The evening in question just happens to coincide with a lunar eclipse. As the night goes on, horrific things begin to occur and Samantha finds she may have wanted to negotiate for a life insurance policy before she accepted the job.

This is one of the best occult movies I have ever seen and this film alone cements Ti West as a master of tension building. If you enjoy this one, I strongly suggest you also check out his other film Inkeepers.

Well thanks again everyone. I will be back tomorrow on Halloween Comic Fest Eve for my final recommendations of the season!