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Hot Comics of the Week (Courtesy Dragon’s Lair): Week of June 18, 2014

The doldrums of early summer are officially setting in. It’s time to venture out to the local comic shop (virtually) to check out the new comics (virtually) and see what’s hot. Although, with the humidity kicking it up a notch, maybe we can find something cool instead.

Let’s see what CJ, Craig, and the Lair crew recommend this week.

I’ll start with what’s NOT on their list.

Original Sin #4

Original Sin #4. By: Jason Aaron, Mike Deodato, Julian Totino Tedesco. Marvel Comics

 

I’m pretty psyched about this series, but I’ve only read the first two issues. I hope that it’s not petering out. Some Marvel events sustain the momentum all the way through (Civil War) or peter out and die a slow death (World War Hulk). Here’s hoping Original Sin is in the former category.

Guaranteed that The Watcher doesn’t stay dead, but it’s been fun so far anyway.

What IS on the list?

Uncanny X-Men #22

Uncanny X-Men #22. By: Brian Michael Bendis, Chris Bachalo. Marvel Comics.

I feel like I just wrote about the Uncanny X-Men last week. Maybe I’m losing it with all these titles. Take a look and let me know, will you?

I have to say, I like Cyclops’ new mask, but I have a feeling it’s going to get old, quick. It just seems impractical. (Not like the normal ruby-quartz visor with a trigger implanted in the thumb of his glove, as I recall from the Official Handbook to the Marvel Universe).

That one… right there.

 

Velvet TPB Vol. 01 Before The Living End

Velvet TPB Vol. 01 Before The Living End. By: Ed Brubaker, Steve Epting. Image Comics.

Now I know I’ve written about this one before. And, already here’s a trade paperback. Boy, time flies… Super fun art, and Ed Brubaker can usually deliver a potboiler like no one’s business. If you liked the last Captain America movie, you’re already a Brubaker fan, even if you don’t know it.

 

Winterworld #1

Winterworld #1. By: Chuck Dixon, Butch Guice. IDW Publishing.

What the heck is this? That guy looks like Kurt Russel from The Thing. I could only hope this book is that sweet. Let’s learn a little more about this one:

Winter is coming early! All new stories based on the Chuck Dixon/Jorge Zaffino classic! The apocalyptic international comics sensation of an Earth turned to an icy hell is back with Dixon returning to script and Butch Guice doing some of the best work of his illustrious artistic career as they take on the bleak and frozen future. Follow Scully and Wynn from their icy home of Wintersea into a killing wasteland where the coldest place is the human heart.

Well, I can’t say that I’m in favor of a bleak and frozen future. Why is it so cold? Were all the scientists really that wrong about global warming? Out of all apocalyptical futures (robotic, giant insect, volcanic, nuclear, zombie, etc…), I think “ice age” is way down on my list.

Still, if the Lair guys like it, it’s probably worth a peek.

Star Trek City on the Edge Of Forever #1 (of 5)

Star Trek City on the Edge Of Forever #1. By: Harlan Ellison, J. K. Woodward, Juan Ortiz. IDW Publishing.

Now this one, I gotta see. Like any teenage boy/nerd worth his salt, I loved Ellison’s short stories when I was “of a certain age”. That cover art, in the words of a certain Doctor is “Fantastic”! I can’t explain the nerd appeal of this book any better than the solicit:

For the first time ever, a visual presentation of the much-discussed, unrevised, unadulterated version of Harlan Ellison’s award-winning Star Trek teleplay script, ‘The City on the Edge of Forever!’ This Hugo- and Writer’s Guild of America Award-winning teleplay has been much discussed for decades but only here can you see the story as Mr. Ellison originally intended! 

C’mon, now. Mr. Ellison? Really? When did we get so formal?

That said, this book is a must have. That’s why Star Trek City on the Edge Of Forever #1 is the official Casual Comics Hot Pick of the Week

Thank you again to the crew at Dragon’s Lair for all the help. You guys are the best.

Support your local comics shop, people. Cheers!

– CCG

PS – Alex + Ada #7 is also out this week. That’s the best comic out right now, but I gotta mix in some other titles, otherwise where’s the suspense in these lists?

Alex + Ada. Read it. Post-haste…

 

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Dragon’s Lair’s Picks: Hot Comics of the Week (June 11, 2014)

After a bit of a hiatus, our friends at Dragon’s Lair are back and better than ever with their comic book recommendations for this week.

For those of you who don’t know, Dragon’s Lair – a staple of the Omaha comic book community – had a fire some time back. They’re moved into their new location on 90th and Blondo, which is spectacular. If you haven’t yet, you should check it out.

And while you’re there, be sure to check out the following comics, recommended by CJ and Craig:

Walking Dead #128

Walking Dead #128. By: Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard. Image Comics.

Man. This book just keeps going. I’m glad to see Kirkman’s still pushing the story along, but I also haven’t read an issue in over four years. Let’s see what’s going on this month. Let’s see. The solicit says:

“After all this time, she should be more prepared. “ Read the rest of this entry

Casual Comic Guy Picks: Hot Comic Books of the Week (April 2, 2014)

Here we are again. Another week. Another new comics day. The comics are like the mail. No matter how far behind I get (and I’m at least two weeks behind reading the comics I’ve bought), they just keep coming.

Not that it’s a bad thing… Just an observation. But that’s why my list is shorter this week. I have issues… BACK ISSUES!

Quantum & Woody #9

Quantum and Woody #9. By: James Asmus, Kano, Tom Fowler. Valiant Entertainment LLC.

People keep telling me that Quantum and Woody is a great title – one I should be reading. Also, I recall this title from my days persuing the shelves of Dragon’s Lair way back in 1988.

It’s been around forever, there’s a goat on the cover, and people tell me to check it out. Why not make it a pick of the week?

(That’s a rhetorical question since I already did)

Doctor Who Magazine #471

The colors on the cover image are HORRIBLE, but whatever. It’s a magazine about Doctor Who and I need some light reading this week. Plus, I just finished watching “The Green Death” and “Blink” is an iconic episode from the new series.

Shotgun Wedding #1 (of 4)

Shotgun Wedding #1. By: William Harms, Edward Pun. Image Comics.

The first issue of a new series. That’s an appealing proposition right out of the gate. The art is marvelous, so it’s got that going for it, too. Let’s check the solicit:

Mike Stone wants nothing more than to marry the woman of his dreams. Denise is smart, sexy, teaches the second grade, and loves Mike more than anything in the world. What she doesn’t know is that Mike is one of the world’s top assassins and was once engaged to a fellow assassin named Chloe. And when Mike abandoned Chloe on their wedding day, she vowed revenge… This April, treat yourself to an issue of SHOTGUN WEDDING each Wednesday! All FOUR issues of Minotaur Press’s latest miniseries will be released in April, and the covers for all four issues connect to form one larger image. 

Sweet! A weekly? So if I like the first issue, I only have to wait week-to-week for the next installment. Count me in.

She-Hulk #3

She-Hulk #3. By: Charles Soule, Javier Pulido, Kevin Wada. Marvel Comics.

The Marvel She-Hulk series is brilliant with a capital “B”. I could not be more excited to see how Jennifer Walters continues building her legal practice whilst punching bad guys in the face. Plus, based on the last issue, I’m anticipating Hellcat being in #3.

If you’re not on board with this title, get #1 and #2 ASAP. By far, the best book being published by Marvel today. This book is so good that I guarantee I’m not only buying this, but getting the first appearances of She-Hulk and Hellcat from the back issue bins.

There’s absolutely no doubt that She-Hulk #3 is the Casual Comics Pick for the Hot Comic of the Week.

Until next time… support you local comics shop! If you’re in Omaha, be sure to stop by the relocated Dragon’s Lair – now open for business.

– CCG

Casual Comic Picks: Hot Comics of the Week (February 26, 2014)

This is the time of the week where I would normally be introducing my good friends at Dragon’s Lair Comics and Games, along with their picks of the week. However, this past weekend, tragedy struck when the shop next door caught fire.

The Blondo location of Dragon’s Lair is currently closed. That store is where I cut my casual comics teeth and became a rabid comics fan. Almost any series I will rave to you about from the 80s and 90s are titles I picked up in this very location. A few titles off the top of my head I remember discovering and purchasing at the Blondo store:

  • Nightcrawler mini-series
  • Cloak and Dagger (eagerly awaited the shipment of this one each month)
  • Vision and the Scarlet Witch (2nd mini-series)
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (3rd printing), and the first printing of each one after that for a while
  • The Tick
  • Miracleman
  • Scout
  • Usagi Yojimbo
  • Mage!

…and so many more. It sounds like the stock is mostly lost – CJ put it best when he said smoke and water are not comics’ friends. But, hopefully the building did not suffer debilitating damage and they can re-open in the same location. Until then, please consider visiting Lair 2 for your comic needs, at least until they get the inventory and ordering back in hand.

So, for this week, you’re stuck with me and my picks again… I’m feeling nostalgic, so I’ll start with:

Miracleman #3

Miracleman #3 by TBD, Garry Leach, Alan Davis. Marvel Comics

Either the solicitation is way out of date or Alan Moore is being prickly again, since it’s listed as TBD for the writer.

This is a great series that we all raved about while milling around the counters at Dragon’s Lair after school. Issue #3 is an important turning point in the series. If you haven’t read this series, you’ve GOT TO start picking up Marvel’s reprints.

Ghostbusters #13

Ghostbusters #13 by: Erik Burnham, Dan Schoening. IDW Publishing

Well, as long as we’re in a somber mood anyway, I’m going to honor the memory of Harold Ramis by checking in on the Ghostbusters realm this week. It’s the first part of a new story arc, apparently, so I’m going to dive in and see if IDW can rekindle any of the 80s magic that the Ghostbusters brought the first time around.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #31

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #31 by: Tom Waltz, Ross Campbell, Kevin Eastman. IDW Publishing

So let’s go for the nostalgia trifecta this week and see just what the Ninja Turtles are up to:

“While strategically secluded in Northampton, the Turtles are hit by new revelations involving enemies’ shifting loyalties, miracle cures, and ghosts from the past. And in the present, grave danger is about to strike! What new Foot Clan menace is hunting the Turtles?”

Well, that actually sounds interesting. Maybe this lookback to my youth will pan out after all.

Superior Foes Spider-Man TPB Vol. 01 Getting Band Back

 

Superior Foes Spider-Man TPB Vol. 01 Getting Band Back by: Nick Spencer, Steve Lieber, Marcos Martin. Marvel Comics

Ahhh… the war cry of the Casual comics fan, “I’m waiting for the trade paperback!” And, it’s finally here.

This title didn’t hit the top five of any of the “best of 2013” lists I saw. But it hovered between seven and ten on enough lists that it piqued my interest. Not “important” enough to bore me, yet not trivial enough to be ignored, this has been a title I’ve been dying to catch up with. Here’s the solicit:

“It’s a new sleeper-hit series starring some of Spidey’s deadliest baddies! Boomerang and his fellow villains prove that with terrible powers come terrible responsibilities, and Spider-Man will soon learn that with superior villains come superior problems! Out on bail and aiming to stay out of jail, Boomerang must get his cronies on target – but does Frank Castle, the one-man army known as the Punisher, have them targeted already? The Foes have a plan and the means to pull it off, but they’re about to learn the hard way that you can’t steal the head of Silvermane without severe repercussions! Rising star Nick Spencer teams with Eisner Award-winning sensation Steve Lieber for a walk on the Spider-Verse’s evil side! Collecting SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN #1-6. “

Sounds like just enough quirk to make it a cracking read. Superior Foes of Spider-Man Trade Paperback is my official Casual Comic Guy Hot Pick of the Week!

As you’re having fun with this week’s title, please keep the team at Dragon’s Lair in your prayers (such as they may be). The store is staffed with good people, and Bob has done so much to make sure that comics and nerd culture are appreciated in the Midwest. If anyone deserves a break, it’s Bob and the Bob-squad at Dragon’s Lair.

Even though it’s out of my way, I’m buying all my new comics there this week. I’d love it if the rest of Omaha did the same.

“Cheers” seems like an unlikely sign-off, so for this week, it’s… Stay Frosty!

– CCG

Dragon’s Lair’s Picks: Hot Comics of the Week (February 19, 2014)

Aaaand we’re back with the hot new comic books from the week of February 19, 2014. We’ll see if I can manage to be in a bit of a better mood this week. Looking at the list that the Dragon’s Lair crew was kind enough to provide, it looks like a pretty good week.

As always, I’ve left the picks to the pros (for the most part) and the uneducated commentary is mine – no passing the blame on that.

Fables #138

Fables #138 by: Bill Willingham, Russell Braun, Christopher Moeller DC Comics

Fables is still running after 138 issues. Good for them. I always did have a weak spot for this title. I’m not sure this is the best jumping off point for new fans, but the one-shot sounds interesting: Read the rest of this entry

Dragon’s Lair’s Picks: Hot Comics of the Week (January 15, 2014)

Ahhh… The new year is upon us and so are the new comics. Here are the picks for the best of the best bets for new comics this week. Rounding out the list is my pick for best comic reissue of the decade.

As always, weekly picks are provided by our friends over at Dragon’s Lair and uneducated commentary is mine and mine alone. 

Monsters! and Other Stories Trade Paperback Read the rest of this entry

Dragon’s Lair’s Picks: Hot Comics of the Week (December 31, 2013)

Here we with the top comic picks for the last week of 2013. Same story as last week, folks. New comic day is Tuesday this week, not Wednesday so thank the New Year that your comics are a day early.

As always, weekly picks are provided by our friends over at Dragon’s Lair and uneducated commentary is solely mine. I’m hoping that with us traversing the year and comics being bumped up one day, there’s some time travel nonsense in these picks. Let’s unwrap them together.

Comic book top picks of the week – Week of December 31

Legenderry #1

Aaaaand right out of the gate, I know we’re in good shape. Read the rest of this entry

Dragon’s Lair’s Picks: Hot Comics of the Week (December 17, 2013)

It’s that time of the week again – New Comic Day approach-eth. Here are the top, hot comic book picks for the week of December 17. As always, picks are provided by our friend’s at Dragon’s Lair Comics and Games with commentary by yours truly.

Full disclosure: I have not read these issues before posting the list. In fact, I have not read many of these titles in years. I can still have an opinion about them, though. It’s a free country (last I checked).

Picks for this week:

Uncanny Avengers #15

Holy cow, Cap looks like he’s been through the red, white, and blue wringer here. Read the rest of this entry

Dragon’s Lair’s Picks: Hot Comics of the Week (December 11, 2013)

Welcome to the top comic book picks for the week. As always, these picks are suggested by the knowledgeable staff over at Dragon’s Lair Comics and Games. They’ve always got great recommendations, so I’m glad to share them here:

Immortal Iron Fist Complete Collection Trade Paperback Vol. 1

“The Immortal Iron Fist” was my first introduction to Matt Fraction and Alexandre Aja, the objects of my casual crush for their work on the new “Hawkeye” series.

Plus, Iron Fist has his own Netflix TV series coming out so it’s time you caught up with the hero. It may seem a bit pricey at $39.99, but the trade paperback collects 20 issues of a tremendous run on an underrated hero. That’s less than $2 per issue.

Richard Stark’s Parker Slayground Hardcover Read the rest of this entry

Casual Comic Book Gift Giving Guide – Hot Gifts for Comic Book Fans this Christmas

Thanks again to CJ and Craig over at Dragon’s Lair for helping me compile a great list of hot holiday gifts for the comic book fan in your life.

I stopped up at Dragon’s Lair (156th and Q) this weekend as they were setting up their holiday display and came away with a list of cool stuff.

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If you’re looking for Christmas gifts, the guys at Dragon’s Lair are the people to ask.

Gifts for the Casual Comics Fan

I’m going to break the list into a few parts – mostly because there’s so much good stuff in comic shops these days.

Part 1 – Trade Paperbacks

Part 2 – Prestige Items and Books for more Serious Collectors

Part 3 – Odds and Ends / Stocking Stuffers Read the rest of this entry