Category Archives: Comic Spotlight

Halloween Comic Fest 2018 Is Here and So Are Matt’s Top Recommendations!

Halloween Comic Fest is happening here at Fanfare all-day on Saturday, October 26th! We will have free comics to give out throughout the day and if you wear your costume we will feature you on our social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)!

To help us get ready for the big event, Matt, Fanfare’s Cryptkeeper of Cool, is helping to count us down to the big day with movie and comic recomendations throughout the week! So without further ado, here’s Matt!

 

Immortal Hulk
(W) Al Ewing
(A) Joe Bennet & Various Artists

Well, I never thought I’d be recommending an Incredible Hulk comic for a horror list, but here we are. This comic has completely blown me away. Ewing and Bennett’s story offers a mixture of action and suspense that incorporates incredibly effective body horror along the way. The book’s creative team brings fresh new ideas and twists to the Hulk mythos, exploring the gamma powered characters of the Marvel U. and the monstrous versions of themselves that they transform into due to their irradiated origins.  The mysterious “Green Door” and its connection to the Hulk brings an almost Lovecraftian theme to the story and introduces a sense of dread to the book unlike any other Hulk story before. Do not sleep on this comic, it is one of the best reads I have had all year long.

 

The Fly (1986)
Director: David Cronenberg

My movie recomendation for the day is this 1986 remake of the amazing classic horror/sci-fi film The Fly. 

In The Fly, a brilliant scientist named Seth Brundle creates a successful teleportation unit and decides it is time to see if it will teleport a human being. The guinea pig for this first test is none other than Seth himself. Things go a bit wrong when a fly enters the unit with him during teleportation and the fly’s DNA mixes with Brundle’s. Following this, Brundle’s body and mind starts to deteriorate until his humanity has eroded and left him a human fly monster.

The movie’s director, David Cronenberg (master of body horror), delivers one of the best movie remakes I have ever seen with some of the greatest practical horror effects ever put onto film. Not only that, but the film stars Jeff Goldblum, so you know that there is a high level of zaniness delivered in the performance as well. 

August 2019 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Copra #1
AUG190053
October 2, 2019
Publisher: Image Comics
(W/A/CA) Michel Fiffe

SERIES PREMIERE
  
COPRA returns in the first issue of its all-new ONGOING SERIES! 

Acclaimed comics auteur MICHEL FIFFE picks up where his band of mercenary misfits left off, reintroducing the entire cast of his Suicide Squad-esque revenge machine in a brutal standoff against their own leader. Jump right into the thick of it with the world’s greatest action team in this extra-length debut milestone-36 pages for just $3.99!

In case you missed it, Michel Fiffe’s Copra, previously published by Bergen Street Comics, has found a new home over at Image Comics. This change kicked off with the first five volumes of the series being reprinted through Image. Now we’ve got this announcement of the series relaunching with singles at Image. I’ll note that this is a continuation of the story, not a reprint. Copra is a series that Josh (you know, the shorter one) has been telling me to read for years and this looks to be a great time to jump in.

 

Joker: Killer Smile #1 (of 3)

AUG190446
October 30, 2019
Publisher: DC Comics
(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Andrea Sorrentino

Everyone knows The Joker doesn’t have the most promising history with psychotherapists. In fact, no one’s even been able to diagnose him. But that doesn’t matter to the confident, world-beating Dr. Ben Arnell; he’s going to be the one to unravel this unknowable mind. There’s no way The Joker could ever get through the therapeutic walls Ben has built around himself. Right? There’s no way The Joker’s been entering his house at night…right? There’s no way The Joker has stood over his son’s bed, and put that book in his hands, the one with the, the, the…  
The Eisner-nominated creative team of Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino (GREEN ARROW, Gideon Falls) reunite for a psychological horror story where nothing is as it seems, your eyes can’t be trusted and Mr. Smiles is waiting behind the basement door. 
Wait, who’s Mr. Smiles?

One of the most exciting announcements out of San Diego Comic Con this year was the news that Jeff Lemire would be writing two new Black Label books for DC — one being a book about The Question and the other Joker: Killer Smile. Lemire joins Green Arrow and Gideon Falls cohort Andrea Sorrentino for Joker which in itself is worth the price of admission. I’m sure this has been said in this blog before but if you’re not reading Gideon Falls yet, go fix that!

 

Strange Skies Over East Berlin #1
AUG191364
October 2, 2019
Publisher: Boom! Studios
(W) Jeff Loveness (A) Lisandro Estherren (CA) Evan Cagle

MANKIND MADE IT TO SPACE. AND NOW SPACE HAS FOLLOWED THEM BACK.
* Herring is a disillusioned American spy stationed on the eastern side of the Berlin Wall, struggling with his role in a Cold War that seems to have no end. But when he’s sent on a mission behind enemy lines to infiltrate East German intelligence, he soon learns the Soviets have a secret weapon that could change the tides of the conflict: an alien monster that they don’t understand, and can’t control.
* The Soviets are about to learn that they’re not in charge of the monster it’s already in their minds and has twisted them to their will. Now now Herring must find a way to understand the impossible before it transforms him into a monster unlike any other.
* Writer Jeff Loveness (Judas) and Lisandro Estherren (Redneck) team up for a story in the spirit of Cold War classics, for fans of period piece science fiction as well as alien action such as Barrier.

Is there a genre for “X group of people from history actually have a secret, otherwordly weapon?” I don’t think it’s played out enough to have its own category but it’s a premise I’m a sucker for and part of what initially drew me into Mike Mignola’s Hellboy universe. So I’m mostly in on this because it sounds rad and I’m diggin’ the True Detective-esque cover.

 

X-Men #1
AUG190845
October 16, 2019
Publisher: Marvel Comics
(W) Jonathon Hickman (A/CA) Leinil Francis Yu

DAWN OF X!
The X-Men find themselves in a whole new world of possibility… and things have never been better! Jonathan Hickman (HOUSE OF X, POWERS OF X, SECRET WARS) and superstar artist Leinil Yu (NEW AVENGERS, CAPTAIN AMERICA) reveal the saga of Cyclops and his hand-picked squad of mutant powerhouses!
Rated T+  

So far, Hickman’s take on X-Men (being his two intertwining mini-series, House of X and Powers of X) is all it’s been chalked up to be. I’m writing this the day before House of X #2 comes out and I can’t wait to read it. That’s saying a lot considering I rarely read books (aside from #1s) right when they come out AND I’ve never really read a proper X-Men book. At this point, I’m on board for whatever Hickman wants to try out here.

 

Batman’s Grave #1 (of 12)
AUG190434
October 9, 2019
Publisher: DC Comics
(W) Warren Ellis (A) Kevin Nowland (A/CA) Bryan Hitch

The World’s Greatest Detective must try to inhabit the mind of a murder victim to solve a case-without filling the empty grave next to those of his parents. Can Batman imagine the life of a corpse with a half-eaten face without dying himself?
Warren Ellis and Bryan Hitch, one of the most legendary creative partnerships of the modern age, reunite in this maxiseries about life, death and the questions most are too afraid to ask.

Great timing on this one — last week saw the release of The Authority Omnibus and I’m enjoying Ellis and Hitch’s work on it (I’ve not read it before and decided to pick it up so I can work my way through Planetary and Ellis’s new Wildstorm run). It’ll be great to see the two working together on a new Batman book. Here’s hoping for a fight with the Midnighter.

June 2019 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Marvel Comics 1000

JUN190842

August 28, 2019

Publisher: Marvel Comics

(W/A/CA) Various

THE GREATEST TALENT EVER ASSEMBLED FOR ONE STORY! 
THIS IS THE BIG ONE! In celebration of Marvel’s 80th Anniversary, we have gathered together the greatest array of talent ever to be assembled between the covers of a single comic book! Names from the past, from the present, and even the future! Every page is filled with all-new work from this cavalcade of comic book luminaries!
There is a mystery that threads throughout the Marvel Universe – one that has its origins in MARVEL COMICS #1 and which unites a disparate array of heroes and villains throughout the decades! What is the Eternity Mask, and who is responsible for the conspiracy to keep it hidden? And what new player will make their startling debut as these secrets are peeled away? 
Featuring the entirety of the Marvel Universe of characters!
Rated T 
PERFECTBOUND FORMAT!

If you follow comics Twitter at all, it would have been hard to miss this announcement last month. A gigantic, all-star group of creators are collaborating on this. Don’t miss it.

 

White Trees #1 (of 2)

JUN190031

August 14, 2o19

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Chip Zdarsky (A/CA) Kris Anka

MINISERIES PREMIERE! Acclaimed Daredevil writer CHIP ZDARSKY teams up with superstar Runaways artists KRIS ANKA and MATT WILSON for this spectacular OVERSIZED TWO-ISSUE MINISERIES! In the fantastical world of Blacksand, peace was hard-won, and three unbending warriors carry the scars to prove it. Now, almost twenty years later, their children are missing and war is on the horizon. Can they put aside their memories of the war-and each other-for one last adventure?

It seems like it’s been a little while since we’ve seen some new, creator-owned work from Chip Zdarsky and that always gets a buy from me. 

 

Berserker Unbound #1

JUN190273

August 7, 2019

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Mike Deodato

A merciless sword and sorcery warrior finds himself blasted through a wormhole to a modern-day metropolis where he must protect those around him from an evil wizard determined to send him to hell. From the Eisner Award-winning team of Jeff Lemire, Mike Deodato Jr., and Frank Martin comes this urban warrior fantasy series! 

The premise of this one sounds like it could have been a low budget action movie from the 80s but with Jeff Lemire writing, you can expect more than just tired tropes. Also, you better believe I ordered the Mike Mignola alternate cover (JUN190274).

 

Once & Future #1

JUN191263

August 7, 2019

Publisher: Boom! Studios

(W) Kieron Gillen (A/CA) Dan Mora

* When a group of Nationalists use an ancient artifact to bring a villain from Arthurian myth back from the dead to gain power, ex-monster hunter Bridgette McGuire escapes her retirement home and pulls her unsuspecting grandson Duncan, a museum curator, into a world of magic and mysticism to defeat a legendary threat.
* Bestselling writer Kieron Gillen (The Wicked + The Divine, Star Wars) and Russ Manning Award-winning artist Dan Mora (Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Klaus) explore the mysteries of the past, the complicated truths of our history and the power of family to save the day – especially if that family has secret bunkers of ancient weapons and decades of experience hunting the greatest monsters in Britain ‘s history!

This sounds like some great, Indiana Jones-esque fun and a great fit for Gillen and Mora. Check out a three page preview here.

 

Omni #1

JUN191784

August 14, 2019

Publisher: Humanoids Inc

(W) Devin Grayson (A) Ariela Kristantina (CA) Mike McKone

A young doctor mysteriously acquires superpowers and quickly discovers that she’s not the only one. There are people all over the planet Igniting with powers, but only her power can answer “why”…
Cecelia Cobbina is a gifted doctor. Vibrant, compassionate and praised by both her peers and her patients. But that was before the incident in Africa. Before she was forced to leave her job at Doctors Without Borders behind. Before she gained the ability to think faster than the speed of light. Overwhelmed with the power to answer almost every question, she must now overcome her own fears and tackle the one code she can’t seem to break: the truth behind the Ignited.

I’ll continue checking out Humanoids’ new line of H1 universe books regardless but I think this one has sounded the most interesting, so far. If you’ve got any interest in the world Humanoids just launched, pop by the store for a copy of Ignited #1, the first book in the H1 universe which recently hit the shelves.

May 2019 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Giant Sized X-Statix #1

MAY190778

July 10, 2019

Publisher: Marvel Comics

(W) Peter Milligan (A/CA) Michael Allred

They’re back and more alive than ever for this special one-shot! But what new threat is so grave that only the most famous mutant celebrities can fight it? And who is the new U-Go-Girl? Only the original X-Statix creative team Peter Milligan, Michael Allred and Laura Allred know for sure!
Parental Advisory

X👏STATIX👏IS👏BACK👏

All right, it looks like it’s just for one issue but still… I am so excited for this one. If you’ve never read X-Statix before, it is well worth doing some diving through the back issues and markdowns from time-to-time to check out this wild series. You won’t regret it!

 

Black Hammer/Justice League #1 (of 5) & The World of Black Hammer Encyclopedia One-Shot

MAY190203 & MAY190208

July 3 / July 10, 2019

Publisher: Dark Horse & DC Comics

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Michael Walsh // (W) Jeff Lemire, Tate Brombal (A) Tyler Crook, David Rubin, Wilfredo Torres, Christian Ward, Tonci Zonjic, Matt Kindt, Emi Lenox (A/CA) Andrea Sorrentino

DC Comics and Dark Horse Comics present the ultimate superhero crossover event of 2019!  

A strange man arrives simultaneously on Black Hammer Farm and in Metropolis, and both worlds are warped as Starro attacks! Batman, Green Lantern, Flash, Wonder Woman, Superman, and more crossover with Golden Gail, Colonel Weird, and the rest of the Black Hammer gang!

//

A comprehensive, illustrated guide to the world of the Eisner Award-winning series Black Hammer!

This special one-shot offers a guide to the world of Black Hammer, presenting detailed biographies of Black Hammer’s heroes, villains, and supporting characters, written by Tate Brombal and Jeff Lemire, and illustrated by a wide assortment of superstar artists, including David Rubin, Wilfredo Torres, Tyler Crook, Christian Ward, and more!

When I first saw Black Hammer solicited, I would never have guessed how quickly the scope of that universe would grow in just a matter of a few years. It remains to be one of the best books out on the shelves and the spin-offs continue to be great, as well. I definitely wasn’t expecting a crossover with the one of the Big 2 before Lemire hinted about it on Twitter, but I am so happy that it’s happening. The covers look fantastic.

 

Jimmy Olsen #1 (of 12)

MAY190369

July 17, 2019

Publisher: DC Comics

(W) Matt Fraction (A/CA) Steve Lieber

Jimmy Olsen must die! Wait, we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Jimmy Olsen lives! Superman’s best friend and Daily Planet photographer Jimmy Olsen tours the bizarre underbelly of the DC Universe in this new miniseries featuring death, destruction, giant turtles and more! It’s a centuries-spanning whirlwind of weird that starts in Metropolis and ends in Gotham City. And then we kill Jimmy.

Speaking of things that look fantastic and are unexpected — we’re getting a Jimmy Olsen maxi-series (that’s a phrase people are using for these twelve issue runs, right?) from Fraction and Lieber. Man, that’s something I didn’t know I needed until it was staring right at me. I’ve loved both Fraction and Lieber’s work and Jimmy Olsen just feels like a great fit for both of their talents.

 

House of X #1 (of 6) & Powers of X #1 (of 6)

MAY190690 & MAY190703

July 24 / July 31, 2019

Publisher: Marvel Comics

(W) Jonathon Hickman (A/CA) Pepe Larraz // (W) Jonathon Hickman (A/CA) R.B. Silva

FACE THE FUTURE! Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman (SECRET WARS, AVENGERS, FANTASTIC FOUR) takes the reins of the X-Men universe! Since the release of Uncanny X-Men #1, there have been four seminal moments in the history of the X-Men. Giant-Sized X-Men. X-Men. Age of Apocalypse. New X-Men. Four iconic series that introduced a new era for Marvel’s mutants and revolutionized the X-Men. In House of X, Charles Xavier reveals his master plan for mutantkind…one that will bring mutants out of the shadow of mankind and into the light once more.
Rated T+

//

FEAR THE FUTURE! Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman (INFINTY, NEW AVENGERS, FF) continues his revolutionary new direction for the X-Men. Intertwining with HOUSE OF X, POWERS OF X reveals the secret past, present  and  future of mutantkind, changing the way you look at every X-Men story before and after. You do not want to miss the next seminal moment in the history of the X-Men!
Rated T+

This is the one folks have been talking about. After years of working on just creator-owned books, Jonathon Hickman is back at Marvel. For a while there were rumblings of him popping over to DC but it sounds like things just didn’t work out. Aside from X-Statix (see above), I’ve never really been into X books and it looks like that’s about to change. As a primer for the Hickman stuff, I think it’s time I finally get around to reading X-Men: Grand Design by Ed Piskor. That’s been on my list as entry point to X books since it first released.

 

Marvels Epilogue #1

MAY190681

July 24, 2019

Publisher: Marvel Comics

(W) Kurt Busiek, Alex Ross (A/CA) Alex Ross

An all-new standalone epilogue to the classic MARVELS graphic novel written by Kurt Busiek and fully-painted by Alex Ross! A “Marvels” look at the “all-new, all-different” X-Men of the 1970s. In this 16-page story, Alex and Kurt bring Marvel’s world to brilliant, realistic life one last time, as the now-retired Phil Sheldon and his daughters, in Manhattan to see the Christmas lights, find themselves in the middle of a clash between the outsider heroes and the deadly Sentinels, giving them a close-up perspective on the mutant experience. Also featuring a behind-the-scenes look at the making of this special story, and other bonus features.
Rated T+

Hey, why not throw in the return of another top-notch Marvel series I didn’t think we’d see more of? If you’re reading this column, there’s a decent chance you’ve read or at least heard of Busiek and Ross’s Marvels. If not, it’s an incredible mini-series looking at the history of the Marvel universe from the street-level perspective of New York citizens, impeccably illustrated with Alex Ross’s Norman Rockwell-esque realism. You won’t want to miss this one.

_______________________________

 

So each month, I typically have a list of six to ten titles that I’ve picked out from Previews which I then pare down to four or five for this list. This month, I jotted down more titles than I ever have before. Because there looks to be so many cool new titles coming out in this issue, I figured I’d post links to the rest of what was on my list for the month. If you’re interested in ordering any of these (or the titles above), send an email over to comicpull [at] fanfareland.com

Sea of Stars #1

Unearth #1

Reaver #1

Bad Weekend

Manor Black #1

The Quiet Kind

No One Left to Fight #1

Star Pig #1

Deep Breaths

After the Spring

Ghosted in L.A. #1

The Man Who Came Down the Attic Stairs

Knights Temporal #1

Strangelands #1

A Comic for Flint: Hope

Blade Runner 2019 #1

Resonant #1

Sera & the Royal Stars #1

Collapser #1

Lois Lane #1

April 2019 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Silver Surfer: Black #1

APR190783

June 12, 2019

Publisher: Marvel Comics

(W) Donny Cates (A/CA) Tradd Moore

Spinning out of GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #1, almost the entire galaxy’s defenders have been blown through a black hole, including the Silver Surfer! But the story doesn’t end there… In order to fight back the oblivion, Surfer will have to fight to save his own soul and not lose himself to the void. Follow the Sentinel of the Spaceways on a journey that will change him forever!
From superstars Donny Cates (VENOM, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY) and Tradd Moore (ALL-NEW GHOST RIDER, VENOM)!
Rated T+

The cover alone should be enough to hook you on this one. Having Tradd Moore on a trippy Silver Surfer book is such an excellent choice. I’ve also yet to dip into Donny Cates’ work with Marvel (I know, I know — I’ve heard great things) and this looks to be great one to jump in with.

 

Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: The Beast of Vargu

APR190224 & APR190225 (left and right covers above)

June 19, 2019

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

(W/CA) Mike Mignola (A) Dave Stewart (A/CA) Duncan Fegredo

Mike Mignola and fan-favorite artist Duncan Fegredo reunite in this all-new one-shot! This first issue in a new era of Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. sees Mignola and Fegredo send Hellboy to Romania for a pair of tales set in a small village with a centuries-old curse and a man-eating monster which culminate in a sinister puppet show and a demigod’s ill-fated dinner.

Hey, Fegredo is drawing Hellboy again with Mike Mignola writing, to boot! With the end of modern day BPRD/Hellboy just around the corner, the announcement of Beast of Vargu is very welcome. Editor Katii O’Brien has been saying there is a lot to look forward to in the Mignolaverse later this year and it looks like Beast of Vargu will be a great book to kick that off.

 

Ignited #1

APR191783

June 5, 2019

Publisher: Humanoids Inc.

(W) Mark Waid, Kwanza Osajyefo (A) Philippe Briones (CA) Mike McKone

Welcome to the H1 Universe and Ignited, Humanoids’ first ever ongoing super-powered series-brought to you by an explosive team: writers Mark Waid (Kingdom Come) and Kwanza Osajyefo (Black AF), and artist Phil Briones (Aquaman), with covers by John Cassaday and Yanick Paquette! It’s the first day back at Phoenix Academy High, but this year there’s no back to school excitement in the air as returning students and faculty are haunted by memories of last year’s horrific attack. So many friends and colleagues were lost, and some of those who survived underwent changes; they Ignited, gaining supernatural abilities they barely understand. Little do they know this is just the beginning!

If you’ve not read it already, I would highly recommend reading this interview with Mark Waid and John Cassaday from this month’s Previews. They go into detail about working on Ignited as well as the direction of their new H1 universe with Humanoids. The concept for this book is certainly ripped from the headlines and I’m optimistic that Waid, Cassaday, and the team will be handling it with appropriate care.

 

Test #1

APR192064

June 26, 2019

Publisher: Vault Comics

(W) Christopher Sebela (A/CA) Jen Hickman

Aleph Null is a lot of things: An orphan, a human guinea pig undergoing medical tests for cash, a bodyhacker, a hardcore future junkie, and a corporate asset. But now, Aleph is on the run from their old life, in search of a mythical, Midwestern town named Laurelwood where they’re test-marketing the future with tech that can’t possibly exist yet, and won’t for decades.

From Eisner-nominated Chris Sebela (Crowded, High Crimes) and Jen Hickman (Moth & Whisper) comes the story of a town out of time, full of mysteries, and populated by guinea pigs in need of liberation by the misfit least likely to be their savior.

I know I hit on this just a couple of months ago, but Vault is continuing to launch books with unique, compelling concepts. Here’s one with a cool idea from a team that seems so well matched for it. It’s also my reminder that I have to read the book Sebela did about his time living in the “Clown Motel.”

 

Marilyn Manor #1

APR190702

June 26, 2019

Publisher: IDW Publishing

(W) Magdalene Visaggio (A/CA) Marley Zarcone

Where were you in ’81? When the White House goes dark for 17 days in August, the president’s spoiled daughter and her best friend Abe-who claims to be possessed by the spirit of Abe Lincoln-throw a rager at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, unearthing long dead historical figures and government secrets that are better off buried. Sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll séances, and secret passageways lead to time-bending mystical romps where past and present collide. But at what cost to Marilyn Kelleher, the world at large, and music television?

Uniting the red-hot Eisner-nominated talents of writer Magdalene Visaggio (Eternity Girl, Kim and Kim) and artist Marley Zarcone (Shade, the Changing Girl, Effigy) for the first time, MARILYN MANOR explores identity, classism, appropriation, and friendship. It’s a rollicking, neon party gone out of bounds when we need it most-set just in time for the greatest pop cultural marriage to date: MTV. 
  
“We’ve been trying to capture the feel, the excitement, the energy of the rise of the New Romantics, of the decade that embraced excess and excitement in hugely over-the-top ways, and filled it with chaos and insanity. This is the weirdest thing I’ve ever written in the best way possible, like an apocalypse directed by John Hughes.”

“…like an apocalypse written by John Hughes.” I love it. I’ve been rereading Shade the Changing Girl recently Zarcone’s art is just fantastic. I can’t wait to see what she and Mags have in store for Marilyn Manor.

March 2019 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Batman: Last Knight on Earth #1

MAR190458

May 29, 2019

Publisher: DC Comics

(W) Scott Snyder (A) Jonathon Glapion (A/CA) Greg Capullo

Bruce Wayne wakes up in Arkham Asylum. Young. Sane.
And…he was never Batman.
So begins this sprawling tale of the Dark Knight as he embarks on a quest through a devastated DC landscape featuring a massive cast of familiar faces from the DC Universe. As he tries to piece together the mystery of his past, he must unravel the cause of this terrible future and track down the unspeakable force that destroyed the world as he knew it…
From the powerhouse creative team of writer Scott Snyder and artist Greg Capullo, the team that reinvented Batman from the emotional depths of “Court of Owls” to the bombastic power of DARK NIGHTS: METAL, DC Black Label is proud to present the bimonthly, three-issue miniseries BATMAN: LAST KNIGHT ON EARTH, published at DC’s standard comic trim size.
This could be the last Batman story ever told…

Snyder and Capullo teaming back up on Black Label Batman book. I think we’ve got a safe bet on this one, folks.

 

Midnight Radio

MAR191863

May 22, 2019

Publisher: Lion Forge

(W/A/CA) Iolanda Zanfardino

Four individuals living in San Francisco are released from the frustrations of their everyday lives by a late night radio broadcast suddenly hijacked by someone with a message for the world. The passion and honesty of the message steers these four lives in dramatic new directions . . .  

There’s not a whole from the solicit here, but I recommend checking out the extended look in Previews. Midnight Radio is a book I’ll definitely be picking up.

 

Excellence #1

MAR190016

May 8, 2019

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Brandon Thomas (A/CA) Khary Randolph, Emilio Lopez

Spencer Dales was born into a world of magic. His father belongs to the Aegis, a secret society of black magicians ordered by their unseen masters to better the lives of others-those with greater potential-but never themselves.
Now it’s time for Spencer to follow in his father’s footsteps, but all he sees is a broken system in need of someone with the wand and the will to change it. But in this fight for a better future, who will stand beside him?  
KHARY RANDOLPH (We Are Robin, Noble, Black, TECH JACKET) and BRANDON THOMAS (HORIZON, The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury, Noble, Voltron) ignite a generational war in this action-fantasy series, made entirely by creators of color, and committed to one truth above all others-Excellence is Real.

There are a quite a few books in this month’s Previews that look incredibly interesting and feature creators I’ve never heard of. I love that! Excellence, Midnight Radio, and She Said Destroy all fall under that category for me and I can’t wait to check them out. 

 

She Said Destroy #1

MAR192091

May 29, 2019

Publisher: Vault Comics

(W) Joe Corallo (A/CA) Liana Kangas

Over millennia, Brigid, Goddess of the Sun, has conquered and converted the entire solar system into worshipping her and her alone, save one space colony. The witches of Fey are the last believers of The Morrigan, Goddess of Death, Brigid’s sister and the only other God left. As Brigid’s forces prepare for one final battle, The Morrigan prepares to do what she does best: Destroy!

If the great standard cover and title weren’t enough for you, check out this Saga homage variant for issue number one of She Said Destroy.

 

Copra (Volumes 1-5)

MAR190056

May 1, 2019

Publisher: Image Comics

(W/A/CA) Michel Fiffe

They’re ugly. They’re mean. But up until today, they’ve always been loyal. So when one of their own betrays them, COPRA has no choice but to turn their nightmarish skills back on everyone who ever even looked at them funny. Here it is: the first six issues of MICHEL FIFFE’s critically acclaimed superhero revenge machine. Collects COPRA #1-6.

Copra has been on my “hey, I need to read this” list for too long. Though the singles were offered exclusively though Fiffe’s Etsy shop, trade paper collections were previously released through Bergen Street Press. Starting in May, Copra volumes 1-5 will be reprinted through Image and it sounds like the series will be there to stay. Time for me to jump in!

February 2019 Previews: Carman’s Picks

B.P.R.D.: The Devil You Know #15

FEB190276

April 17, 2019

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

(W) Mike Mignola, Scott Allie (A) Laurence Campbell (CA) Mike Mignola

After fifteen years of B.P.R.D. comics, the series reaches its explosive conclusion!

No, you’re crying.

 

Ascender #1

FEB190010

April 24, 2019

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Dustin Nguyen

“THE HAUNTED GALAXY,” Part One
Powerhouse creative team JEFF LEMIRE and DUSTIN NGUYEN launch an all-new sequel series to DESCENDER with the launch of ASCENDER!  

Set ten years after the conclusion of DESCENDER’s storyline, magic has taken the place of machinery and the rules are very different indeed… Mila, the daughter of Andy and Effie from DESCENDER, spends her days exploring the lonely wilds of the planet Sampson and trying to stay out of the clutches of the evil disciples of the all-powerful vampire witch known only as Mother. But, like her parents, Mila doesn’t like to play by the rules, and when a certain robot pal of her dad’s shows up, nothing will ever be the same! 

With all the scope and heart of the sci-fi classic DESCENDER, LEMIRE and NGUYEN reunite to take readers on an unforgettable fantasy quest!

Though some long-running series like B.P.R.D. are ending, other series are returning. Sort of, anyway. Ascender is technically a new series but is also a sequel to Lemire and Nguyen’s Descender. If you’ve not read Descender yet, you’ve got some catching up to do on one of the best books to come out in the past few years.

 

Queen of Bad Dreams #1

FEB192076

April 24, 2019

Publisher: Vault Comics

(W) Danny Lore (A/CA) Jordi Perez

When a dream entity known as a figment emerges from a dreamer’s mind, it’s Daher’s job as an IJ to track them down and make the call: reinsert the figment, or grant them agency in our world. After an especially powerful figment escapes the dreams of an even more powerful politician’s son, Daher is pulled headlong into an investigation that traces all the way back to the incident that sent dreams, even nightmares, spilling into our reality.

I keep hearing about Vault Comics knocking it out of the park with their new series and it’s time I jump on the wagon from the beginning. I’ve been hearing some great initial impressions of Queen of Bad Dreams and I’m really looking forward to checking this one out. Plus, look at this variant cover!

 

Little Girls

FEB190018

April 24, 2019

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Nicholas Aflleje (A/CA) Sarah DeLaine, Ashley Lanni

Something hunts people on the outskirts of town…

Sam and Lielet are two new friends living in Ethiopia. They’re dealing with the kind of problems that all kids have: judgmental social cliques, condescending adults, alienation… and a legendary brain-eating monster straight out of folklore. Sure, it’s not going to be easy, but all they have to do is live through it.

Showcasing a quietly unsettling plot and building tension similar to NICK DRNASO’s Sabrina and ADRIAN TOMINE’s Killing and Dying, debut creative team NICHOLAS AFLLEJE and SARAH DeLAINE construct a poignant story of otherness and mystery.

The premise paired with the setting for Little Girls certainly has a promising hook. It doesn’t sound wholly dissimilar from other pitches for new series from Image but namedropping Sabrina and Killing and Dying has me very intrigued on the pacing and tone of this one. 

 

Hot Comb

FEB191682

May 15, 2019

Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly

(W/A/CA) Ebony Flowers

Hot Comb offers a poignant glimpse into Black women’s lives and coming of age stories as seen across a crowded, ammonia-scented hair salon while ladies gossip and bond over the burn. The titular story is about a young girl’s first perm-a doomed ploy to look cool and to stop seeming “too white” in the all-black neighborhood her family has just moved to. Realizations about race, class, and the imperfections of identity swirl through Flowers’ stories, which are by turns sweet, insightful, and heartbreaking.

Drawn & Quarterly is another publisher that I’d like to start reading more regularly and I’m excited to read Hot Comb. I’d not heard of Ebony Flowers but I really enjoyed the preview on her website. Learn more about her here!

January 2019 Previews: Carman’s Picks

Black Hammer 45 #1

JAN190412

Mar. 6, 2019

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

(W) Jeff Lemire, Ray Fawkes (A/CA) Matt Kindt, Sharlene Kindt

During the Golden Age of superheroes, an elite Air Force crew called the Black Hammer Squadron was formed to fight the Axis powers. With occult threats from the German side, this team must save a family of scientists from the Nazi’s, but the mysterious and dangerous Ghost Hunter is hot on their trail. From the World of Black Hammer comes a truly gripping tale of war and intrigue!

Here it is — the Lemire/Kindt dream team (having Fawkes involved is great, too!). I’ve been dying to know what this book was going to be since Jeff Lemire tweeted this last September. Though I would have evaporated into a gust of ethereal whooshing if somehow their project was Twin Peaks-related like Matt Kindt hinted in his reply to Lemire’s tweet, I think this is safer for my health. Black Hammer and its spin-offs have been some of the best comics on the stands and I can’t tell you how excited I am to have another book in that universe that sounds like 1940s B.P.R.D. with Lemire, Kindt, Kindt, and Fawkes at the helm.

 

Invisible Kingdom #1

JAN190409

Mar. 20, 2019

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

(W) G. Willow Wilson (A/CA) Christian Ward

Set in a in a far-flung star system, this new epic sci-fi monthly saga tells the tale of two women-a young religious acolyte and a hard-bitten freighter pilot-who separately uncover a vast conspiracy between the leader of the system’s dominant religion and the mega-corporation that controls society. On the run from reprisals on both sides, this unlikely pair of rebels risk plunging the world into anarchy if they reveal the truth. But when your beliefs betray you, what choice is there left?
By Hugo Award-winning writer G. Willow Wilson (Wonder Woman, Ms. Marvel) and Eisner Award-winning artist Christian Ward (Black Bolt, ODY-C).

G. Willow Wilson has been writing some of the best Big Two books in the past few years and it’s exciting to see her with a new, creator-owned book. Invisible Kingdom is the latest Berger Books title, an imprint of Dark Horse spearheaded by legendary editor Karen Berger. The story sounds rad and a great premise for some cosmic Christian Ward art.

 

Assassin Nation #1

JAN190122

Mar. 13, 2019

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Kyle Starks (A/CA) Erica Henderson

SERIES PREMIERE! Hot off her breakout success at Marvel, two-time Eisner award winner ERICA HENDERSON (The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, Jughead) teams up with KYLE STARKS (writer of sales beast Rick and Morty) for a hilarious twist on the hitman trope that will have readers laughing in the aisles over ASSASSIN NATION.
The World’s Former Greatest Hitman hires the 20 best assassins in the world to be his bodyguards. These mean-as-hell hired guns and murderers must work together to keep the new crime boss safe while attempting to solve the mystery of who’s trying to off him.
With the same laugh-until-you-cry spirit of action-comedies like Hot Fuzz, Tropic Thunder, and Deadpool, ASSASSIN NATION is the bombastic, side-splitting murder-fest you’ve been waiting for.

Wistful Stan, F*** Tarkington, Smuch Walker, Desert Regal, and Dave are just some of the assassin names that will appear in this book.

 

Exo HC

JAN191943

Jan. 23, 2019

Publisher: Humanoids Inc

(W) Jerry Frissen (A/CA) Philippe Scoffoni

A hard sci-fi story about the intersection of spatial exploration and earthy invasion. Near future. NASA is confident it finally discovered an exoplanet likely to accommodate life. Located 4 light-years from earth, Darwin II creates a lot of questions and is scheduled for imminent exploration by a space probe. At the same very moment, an orbital space station is struck by a missile shot from the moon, killing several astronauts. Coincidence or conspiracy?

Humanoids is a company that I’d mostly known for publishing The Incal, the renowed series by Jodorowsky and Moebius. That changed a few months ago when they announced their hiring of John Cassaday as their Chief Creative Officer and Mark Waid as their Director of Creative Development. Since then, I’ve certainly had my eye out for their books and Exo looks like a great (see creepy, sci-fi) place to dip my toes in. 

 

Daredevil #1 & Spider-Man: Life Story #1 (of 6)

DEC180841 & JAN190927

Feb. 6, 2019 & Mar. 20, 2019

Publisher: Marvel Comics

(W/A) Chip Zdarsky (A) Marco Checchetto (CA) Julian Totino Tedesco // (W/CA) Chip Zdarsky (A) Mark Bagley

CLASSIFIED

//

In 1962, in AMAZING FANTASY #15, 15-year-old Peter Parker was bitten by a radioactive spider and became the Amazing Spider-Man! Fifty-seven years have passed in the real world since that event – so what would have happened if the same amount of time passed for Peter as well?
A special high-end limited series that’s a part of the celebration of Marvel’s 80th anniversary, SPIDER-MAN: LIFE STORY combines the talents of Chip Zdarsky (SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN, MARVEL 2-IN-ONE) and Mark Bagley (AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN) to tell the entire history of Spider-Man from beginning to end, set against the key events of the decades through which he lived!
In this first oversized issue, when Flash Thompson is drafted to serve during the Vietnam War, Spidey must weigh the question of where his responsibility truly lies!

Listen, I’m sure y’all know about Daredevil by now since Chip Zdarsky HISSELF made this promotional video for Fanfare. I should clarify that by “know about it,” I mean that you know it’s a book called Daredevil and that the solicitation just says “CLASSIFIED.” Zdarsky’s other newly-announced Marvel endeavor is Spider-Man: Life Story — a miniseries swinging readers through the history of the classic character, decade by decade. After Ed Piskor’s slick X-Men: Grand Design, it’s cool to see Marvel doing another one of these retrospectives. 

 

Little Bird #1 (of 5)

JAN190099

Mar. 13, 2019

Publisher: Image Comics

(W) Darcy Van Poelgeest (A/CA) Ian Bertram

MINISERIES PREMIERE! 
Director/screenwriter DARCY VAN POELGEEST boasts a long list of awards and accolades for his storytelling prowess and brings the same writing finesse to IAN BERTRAM’s breathtakingly detailed artwork in the gorgeous, hyper-detailed miniseries LITTLE BIRD.
With the same limitless scope as a new EAST OF WEST or SAGA and the drama and surrealism of Akira, LITTLE BIRD follows a young resistance fighter who battles against an oppressive American Empire and searches for her own identity in a world on fire.

All in all, we’ve only got about a one line description of the story in Little Bird, but sometimes less is more.The preview for this book looks cool and it’s always fun to take a chance on an Image #1.

Andrew’s Top 10 Comics of 2018

As we move into 2019 we thought it would be fun to share some of the Fanfare Crew’s favorite books and games with everyone out there. Throughout the week you can check out what we loved (and share what you loved) over on our social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Fanfare Blog). Kicking things off is Andrew with his Top 10 Comic Countdown of 2018. Take it away!

Hey everyone, 2018 was a fantastic year for comics and what better way to celebrate them by doing a good old fashion top 10 list! These are my top 10 books from 2018:

10. Where We Live: Las Vegas Shooting Benefit Anthology.

On October 1st, 2017, Las Vegas suffered a horrible tragedy.  Image comics brought together some of today’s top creators to tell stories that honored the victims. 100% of the proceeds from this book go to the non-profit foundation Route 91 Strong.
 
9. Justice League Dark

This book has one of the most insane teams that I can remember. Y’all ever heard of Detective Chimp? He’s a chimpanzee with human-level intelligence that solves crimes. (He’s a detective that is a chimp. – Ed.) Not convinced yet? He also has a sword that can cut through space time! He teams up with Swamp Thing, Zatanna, Man-Bat and Wonder Woman (yes, Wonder Woman) to fight against the magical world in DC comics. 
 
8. The Weatherman

Picture this, you’re the number one weatherman on Mars, your life is good and your best friend is your dog. Sounds good, right? But then…Bam! You are accused of the worst terrorist attack in history and of course you don’t remember doing this. This is all from issue #1 of one of the best new books on the shelves!

7. Venom

Venom was personally never one of my favorite characters, until this story. Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman add some brand new elements to the origins of the symbiote and they are creepy. If you are interested in Venom after seeing the movie or if you really enjoyed Donny Cates run of Thanos, you should check this book out!

6. Adventure Zone: Here There Be Gerblins.

Yes its gerblins, not goblins. This comic is based off of the first story arc from one of my all time favorite podcasts (The Adventure Zone). The Adventure Zone is a real play Dungeon and Dragons podcast where Griffin McElroy is the dungeon master to his two brothers and his father. It is hilarious and heart-felt and one of the best stories I have had the pleasure of hearing. They got the chance to turn their story into a comic with artist Carey Pietsch, and it is an extremely fun ride!
 
5. Gideon Falls

This story is intense so far. You have a young man who thinks he found a conspiracy in the city’s trash and new priest coming to a small town that has some dark and…interesting things happening in it. Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino bring their A game to this new ongoing book!

4. Dark Nights Metal

This book is in my top 3 greatest comic book crossover events of all time! It’s got everything, Gotham getting destroyed, evil versions of Batman from the Multiverse, and a version of Darkseid that I do not want to spoil for anyone that hasn’t read it yet.

3. East of West

You know that story about three of the four Horsemen of the Apocalypse being “reborn” as children and hunting down Death? That is just one of the many story lines in this futuristic, western inspired, post apocalyptic tale! Now is the time to catch up on this book because Jonathan Hickman is almost finished with his (in my opinion) best comic to date!

2. West Coast Avengers

If you were a fan of Matt Fraction and David Aja’s run on Hawkeye, or the idea of B.R.O.D.O.K. (AKA the Bio-Robotic Organism Designed Overwhelmingly for Kissing) sounds like something you would be into. Then you need to check out Kelly Thompson and Stefano Caselli’s version of the West Coast Avengers. It is a book that makes me laugh constantly and has jumped to the top of my stack whenever a new issue drops!

1. Mister Miracle

I’m sure any of you that have talked to me in the store knew that this was coming. I am not going to say much about this book because I don’t want anything to be spoiled. Just know that not only is this my favorite comic of the year, it might be my favorite comic of all time!
 
Happy New Year, Everyone!

Halloween Comic Fest 2018 Is Here and So Are Matt’s Top Recommendations!

Happy Halloween Comic Fest 2018 Everyone! We look forward to seeing you all come in for free comics and of course to show off your cool costumes!

It is time for my top recommendations for the year…so let’s get into it!

My top book recommendation is Frankenstein by writer/artist Junji Ito.

Horror master Junji Ito blends his signature brand of terror with the classic Mary Shelley tale in this collection.  Also included in this collection are six tales of a boy named Oshikiri and the transdimensional haunted house he resides within. So, whether you are looking to revisit a classic or try something new, this volume has it all!

I can’t possibly recommend Ito’s works enough. We carry quite a bit of Ito’s work regularly, so if you are looking for some of the best horror stories to appear in the comics medium, you owe it to yourself to check it out. Fans of anime may also want to check out the Junji Ito Collection which is streaming free over at Crunchy Roll right now!

My final film recommendation for this year’s countdown is The Devil’s Candy written and directed by Sean Byrne.

Despite this film being available on physical media and Netflix for over a year, it has still flown under many people’s radars. That is a shame since this movie is an absolute modern classic.

The Devils’s Candy a young painter and his family move into a Texas home. However, this is a home with a history. A tragic murder happened years ago within the home and the house itself speaks to chosen inhabitants. Shortly after moving in, the artist finds himself blacking out only to awaken hours later to large demonic paintings he has no recollection of creating. Disturbing as that may be, the situation gets even worse as a deeply disturbed man with a connection to the house decides it is time to come home.

This movie features some of the best acting I have seen in a horror movie in quite some time. If you can handle a film that envelopes you in a deeply disturbing atmosphere and attempts to crush you with layer upon layer of dread then this one is for you.

Thanks for joining me again this year for the countdown everyone! I hope you all enjoy this Halloween season and hope to see you at Halloween Comic Fest!