What a week comic has in store. So many major new series starting this week. I felt compelled to just include #1 issues. There are some returning series as well. It all adds up to what could be one of the biggest weeks of the year thus far.
10. Dead Dog’s Bite #1
Writer/Artist: Tyler Boss
Publisher: Dark Horse
Description: Cormac Guffin has gone missing. It’s been three days and no one has seen hide nor hair of her. The police have nothing, and the townsfolk are acting more like a funeral procession than a search party. If Cormac has any hope of being found, it rests on the slouching shoulders of her best friend Joe. Joe will need her wits about her though, because, like any story worth hearing, nothing is what it seems.
Why it Made the List: A big reason I am looking forward to this issue is seeing more Tyler Boss artwork. I loved his work on 4 Kids Walk Into a Bank. Knowing he is doing another crime story has me excited. Dark Horse is quietly having a very good year and this could continue that trend. As a major fan of the crime genre, I am happy we are getting another pure crime story that does not involve any type of supernatural or fantasy story. With Criminal over and no longer a monthly series a book like this could vill that void.
9. Jonna and The Unpossible Monsters #1
Writer: Laura Samnee
Artist: Chris Samnee
Publisher: Oni Press
Description: Don’t miss the brand-new, original series written and drawn by Eisner-winner Chris Samnee! Filled with action, adventure… and monsters! Rainbow has been searching for her sister, Jonna, for a year. The last time she saw Jonna was also the first time she saw one of the monsters that now roam the planet. They’re big, ugly, and dangerous creatures, driving humanity to the brink of extinction. Though there isn’t much hope for survival out in the wild, Rainbow knows that her sister is out there somewhere-and she’ll do anything to find her.
Why it Made the List: Any time we get Chris Samnee’s art I am there with a massive smile on my face. He is doing wonders in Firepower and now we getting another new series. Looking at the character design and concept I get the sense this is designed to be an all-ages book which would be wonderful. There simply are not a lot of monthly series that is designed for kids. Tons of graphic novels of course, but as a parent, I am happy to have a book I can share with my kid that comes out in this format. Especially a story that is a new concept with original characters.
8. Undone By Blood or The Other Side of Eden #1
Writer: Lonnie Nadler, Zac Thompson
Artist: Sami Kivela
Description: The early 1930’s: The height of the Great Depression and beginning of the Dust Bowl. Silvano Luna Del Rio works as a postman in Buttar, Texas. Reeling from a tragic past, with only a gun and a Western novel to his name, Silvano sets out to take back from the country that took so much from him by robbing the first skyscraper West of the Mississippi. But acts of retribution are never as simple as they seem, as his target is home to an eccentric fraternal brotherhood hiding their own dark secrets. By Silvano’s side is an old west novel featuring famed gunslinger Solomon Eaton. As both stories unfold simultaneously, in true UNDONE BY BLOOD fashion, the mythic Western informs choices in reality, for better or worse.
Why it Made the List: So this is a number one that is not a normal number one. Last year we got the series Undone by Blood or the Shadow of a Wanted Man that had a similar concept but with different characters. That book was one of my favorite books of the year last year. Now the creative team is back again. Not only are the characters different so is the time period. A story that takes place 1930’s is inherently interesting especially when you involve the Old West because you have a lot of people who lived during both. Plus more Sami Kivela art is always a good thing.
7. The Plot #8
Writer: Michael Moreci
Artist: Tim Daniel
Description: In order to break the curse that has haunted the Blaines for generations, Chase must destroy his family legacy. But can you really heal an entire history of shared trauma? Blood, flame, and sacrifice ignite the saga’s incendiary final chapter!
Why it Made the List: Hey look a book that is not a new number one! In fact, we are getting the exact opposite as this marks the end of this series, at least for now. The Plot has been one of my favorite horror comics since it first came out. Both the old school atmosphere and the way it was able it utilizes time have been the major highlights. If you enjoy classic 1970s type of horror you will most likely vibe with this. You have multiple time periods and storylines that could be convoluted but always flow extremely well. I do wonder how all this is going to end and if we will get a complete ending. There is room for this to go on much longer if they wanted.
6. Demon Days: X-Men #1
Writer/Artist: Peach Momoko
Description: From STORMBREAKER PEACH MOMOKO comes a Marvel story unlike any you’ve ever seen before! A wandering swordswoman with a psychic blade arrives at village that’s being targeted by demons. One demon is black and white with a terrifying red tongue and another may be the strongest demon there is! In the stunning kick-off issue of this prestige quarterly story, you’ll see a revolutionary reimagination of the Marvel Universe that could only come from Peach Momoko. Ready your katana and enter a mysterious world of demons, monsters, mutants, and magic! Book ONE of FIVE of the DEMON DAYS saga!
Why it Made the List: Peach Momoko has made a name for herself with some incredible cover work over the last few years. Now she is getting a chance to take over an entire comic book by herself. Not only is she drawing it but she is also the writer. This could go a lot of different ways which has me excited. This seems like it will very much be its own thing and not tied to the other X-Men books. It makes sense as it will most likely bring in a different type of fanbase. Marvel opening the doors to new creators and different types of storytelling is great for the comic industry and fans.
5. Nocterra #1
Writer: Scott Snyder
Artist: Tony S. Daniel, Tomeu Morey
Publisher: Image Comics
Description: FULL THROTTLE DARK, PART ONE. Ten years after the world is plunged into an everlasting night that turns all living creatures into monstrous shades, the only way to survive is to stay close to artificial light. Enter Valentina “Val” Riggs, a skilled ferryman who transports people and goods along deadly unlit roads with her heavily illuminated eighteen-wheeler.
Why it Made the List: Whenever Scott Snyder puts out a book it is a big deal for the comic world. Especially if it is something brand new for an indie publisher. This made waves on Kickstarter and now is finally coming out to everyone. An art team that includes Tony S. Daniel and Tomeu Morey also has a lot of promise. I feel a book like this could usher in a new era for Scott Sndyer’s career as he gets away from the complexities of reshaping the DC universe. Now he has a brand new world to put his fingerprints on and for us to enjoy.
4. Fear Case #2
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: Tyler Jenkins
Publisher: Dark Horse
Description: After witnessing a bizarre murder party in a suburban swimming pool, federal agents Winters and Mitchum continue their hunt for the mysterious horror box known as the “Fear Case,” that plagues those whoever foolishly decide to open it.
Why it Made the List: This was one of my most anticipated comics going into the year and issue one did not disappoint. Matt Kindt, Tyler Jenkins, and Hilary Jenkins make quite the creative team. I loved Black Badge and Fear Case started off strong with issue number one. This has a very X-Files vibe but with a much more brutal execution. Obsession appears to be a central theme as this case is one that has consumed past agents to the point of insanity. These agents may be the closest ever to solving this case, but that comes with a new level of danger. Also, their year on the case is nearing its end so you have this race against time on multiple fronts. Now that the concept has been established my hope is this issue we give us some more detail on these characters.
3. The Comic Book History of Animation #4
Writer: Fred Van Lente
Artist: Ryan Dunlavey
Description: Don’t touch that dial! It’s SATURDAY MORNING FUNHOUSE! We roll into the 1960s, during which a CBS executive named Fred Silverman had the brilliant idea to turn Saturday mornings into all kids programming, transforming the toon landscape forever! Hanna and Barbera are fired from MGM, but become the biggest animators in the country-but what happens to all the jobs sent overseas? In Japan, the animation industry begins taking its first few steps toward dominance, where Hayao Miyazaki begins learning his trade-and yearning for more!
Why it Made the List: What a gem of a comic this has been. Maybe I am being too subjective because this feels like a comic made for me. It combines so much of the things I love; history, comics, and animation. Now we are getting a deep dive into Saturday Morning Cartoons and Hayao Miyazaki? Be still my beating heart. If you listen to the Cinema Geeks podcast you would have heard us go down his entire filmography. I have faith this will be filled with details I never knew about. One of my biggest early goals of the year is making as many people as possible aware this book exists.
2. The Swamp Thing #1
Writer: Ram V.
Artist: Mike Perkins
Publisher: DC Comics
Description: Swamp Thing returns in a new 10-issue series that stars Levi Kamei as the next Guardian of the Green. Unable to control his transformation into the monstrous Swamp Thing, Levi is thrust into the harsh, unforgiving mystery of grisly murders committed by a supernatural desert legend. Levi must revisit past events in his homeland of India and face the deadly reality of a ravenous new villain in order to comprehend what he is truly, and horrifyingly, becoming. A new era of global action and horror blossoms here, and Swamp Thing will be at the root of it!
Why it Made the List: Ram V. and Mike Perkins’s Swamp Thing was my favorite book in Future State and now they are getting to take on the main title. This will mark a major change of Swamp Thing with a new person becoming the Guadian of the Green and the time is right for it. Ram V has quietly been one of DC’s best writers if not best writers over the last year. Just look at books like Justice League Dark and Catwoman. He took over two series and made them his own. I am excited to see him behind a major launch like this. Plus I am happy that we are getting a Swam Thing regular series again. My hope is this 10 issue series is just the beginning of a much longer story.
1. BRZRKR #1
Writer: Matt Kindt, Keanu Reeves
Artist: Alessandro Vitti
Publisher: Boom! Studios
Description: Discover the next blockbuster action franchise from the iconic KEANU REEVES in his Must Read comic book writing debut alongside New York Times best-selling co-writer Matt Kindt (Folklords, Bang!) and acclaimed artist Alessandro Vitti (Marvel’s Secret Warriors) in a brutally violent new series about one immortal warrior’s fight through the ages. The man known only as Berzerker is half-mortal and half-God, cursed and compelled to violence…even at the sacrifice of his sanity. But after wandering the world for centuries, Berzerker may have finally found a refuge – working for the U.S. government to fight the battles too violent and too dangerous for anyone else. In exchange, Berzerker will be granted the one thing he desires – the truth about his endless blood-soaked existence… and how to end it.
Why it Made the List: It was a bit weird putting Keanu Reeves as a writer of a comic book issue. Hopefully, it pays off. I am happy anytime a comic, especially an indie comic, can get mainstream attention like this. To Boom! Studios credit they are doing everything possible to make this comic feel like a big deal. The big reason I have faith in this issue is Matt Kindt being attached. One of today’s most consistent writers who has worked on a large variety of comics. If they pull this off this could end up being one of the biggest comics of the year and the biggest independent books since Saga.
Other Books I am excited about: Batman #106, James Bond: Agent of Spectre #1, Runaways #34, Fire Power #9, Sea of Sorrows #4, King in Black: Thunderbolts #3. The Dreaming: Waking Hours #8, Transformers: Beast Wars #2, ‘King Tank Girl #5, Giga #3