Reviews of trade paperbacks of comic books (mostly Marvel), along with a few other semi-relevant comments / reviews.

26 May 2011

Marvel August 2011 solicitations (collected editions)

Sorry this is up a little late — I was serving my time in Canada earlier this month, and I’m just now getting caught up. Here are Marvel’s books for August 2011:

Will buy:

Shock of shocks — I’m not definitely going to buy any Marvel books in August. Is this my failing, or is something wrong with the House of Ideas? You decide!

Might buy eventually:

  • Avengers Academy: Arcade: Death Game: The first TPB isn’t out yet; that will determine whether I pick up this second book. On the other hand, this is an odd collection: an issue of Marvel Team-Up from the late ‘70s, a Spider-Man from the early ‘90s, and Avengers Academy Giant-Size #1. Actually, this looks more like an Arcade collection than Avengers Academy. ($14.99; ISBN: 9780785156307)
  • Spider-Girl: Family Values: On one hand, the early issues got good reviews. On the other hand, this is Anya Corazon, who starred in the badly received Arana. Ah, well, at least it’s complete in one volume. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785146940)
Might buy if the price is right:

  • FF by Jonathan Hickman, v. 1 (hardcover): This isn’t the first time the team has lost one of the founding members to death, but it is the first time they’ve changed the team name and costumes because of it. So that’s something, I guess. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785151449)
  • Green Goblin: A Lighter Shade of Green: I am interested in this title; I heard good things about Green Goblin back in the ‘90s when it originally came out. Am I $40 interested? Hell, no, I am not. I can get the original issues for less than half that and then have them bound together in hardcover. ($39.99; ISBN: 9780785157571)

  • Marvel Masterworks: Golden Age All-Winners, v. 4 (hardcover): They were golden, and they were all winners. Even the Silver Loser. ($64.99; ISBN: 9780785133599)
  • Marvel Masterworks: The Fantastic Four, v. 13 (hardcover): I had no idea the Masterworks were so far into the post-Lee / Kirby era of Fantastic Four; this reprints #129141, which I don’t remember as very good despite John Buscema’s work. ($59.99; ISBN: 9780785150404)
  • Marvel Masterworks: The Sub-Mariner, v. 1: I just read the Essential, and I don’t think color’s going to help this one. ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785150688)
Already have or read:

  • Essential Web of Spider-Man, v. 1: An interesting choice for an Essential — the third-tier Spider-title — but we all knew we’d get here sooner or later. It is curious Web begins before the title it replaced, Marvel Team-Up, is finished. It would be like the Essential Thing coming out before Essential Marvel Two-in-One finished. Ha, I kid! Marvel Two-in-One is never going to finish. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785157564)
  • Fantastic Four by John Byrne Omnibus, v. 1 (hardcover): Always worth reading. ($125; ISBN: 9780785158240)
  • Fantastic Four by Mark Waid & Mike Wieringo Ultimate Collection, Book 2: Have it on the GIT Corp. DVD-Rom, which I heartily recommend. ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785156581)
  • Hulk Visionaries: Peter David, v. 8: Volume 8 gets us about halfway through David’s run. I don’t know what is more astonishing: that it will take at least 16 volumes to get through the entirety of Hulk Visionaries: Peter David or that we might actually get all those volumes. ($29.99; ISBN: 9780785156031)
  • New X-Men by Grant Morrison, Book 4 ($14.99; ISBN: 9780785155324)
  • X-Force: Assault on Graymalkin (hardcover): Not really a run of X-Force I would choose to collect, but, you know, whatever. It does have the benefit of coming during X-Force’s first non-Cable period. As a side note, this contains the first non-crossover X-Force issues that I ever read. ($29.99; ISBN: 9780785158998)
  • X-Statix Omnibus (hardcover): Peter Milligan and Mike Allred’s classic work, in one gigantic volume. The same price as the John Byrne Omnibus, but it has 116 more pages. (Total: 1,200 pages.) Bonus! ($125; ISBN: 9780785158448)
Licensed books:

  • Formic Wars: Burning Earth (hardcover): Burn, Earth, burn! ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785136095)
  • Marvelman Classic, v. 3 (hardcover): No, this isn’t the Moore / Davis / Gaiman stuff. Quit asking. ($34.99; ISBN: 9780785157236)
  • Oz: Ozma of Oz (hardcover): Eric Shanower’s Oz is well regarded, but I personally have no interest Oz. ($29.99; ISBN: 9780785142478)
  • The Stand, v. 1: Captain Trips: Horrible line from the solicitation: “For when Captain Trips works its way across the land, it is time to make a stand.” First, “Captain Trips” is the superflu, and making a stand against a virus is likely to be a futile effort. Second, way to awkwardly shoehorn the name of the series and volume into the book while making it sound like you haven’t read the source material or the book solicited. ($14.99; ISBN: 9780785135210)
The Rest:

  • Annihilators (hardcover): Although I have all of Guardians of the Galaxy and have read Annihilation, I don’t have any interest in this. Weird. ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785160403)
  • Black Widow: The Itsy-Bitsy Spider (hardcover): I don’t think I’ve seen any artist draw the Black Widow in a way that could be described as “itsy-bitsy.” ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785158271)
  • Captain America: Prisoner of War (hardcover): The solicit doesn’t say what war Cap is a prisoner of, so I’m going to choose my favorite: The War of Spanish Succession. ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785151210)
  • Carnage: Family Feud (hardcover): In which Carnage kills Richard Dawson, Ray Combs (again), Louie Anderson, Richard Karn, John O’Hurley, and Steve Harvey. That’s why it’s five issues long! ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785151128)
  • Daken: Dark Wolverine: Empire ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785147060)
  • Deadpool / Amazing Spider-Man / Hulk: Identity Wars (hardcover): I’ll take random team-ups for $800, Alex. Although I suppose it’s not as random as it could be, given that both Spider-Man and Deadpool have been featured in team-up books. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785155683)
  • Incredible Hulks: Dark Son: So, in this book, the Hulk has three kids, and his cousin, wife (?), and best pal are all Hulk critters as well. There has to be a reset button in there somewhere. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785150015)
  • Invincible Iron Man, v. 6: Stark Resilient, Book 2 ($15.99; ISBN: 9780785148357)
  • Invincible Iron Man, v. 8: The Unfixable (hardcover): Hmm, the hardcover and TPBs are two apart now. That’s probably not good, although I’m too lazy to look up whether ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785153221)
  • Marvel Adventures Spider-Man: Friendly Neighborhood (digest): I remember when digests cost $7. (I’m not old; I’m just surly.) ($9.99; ISBN: 9780785152576)
  • The Marvel Art of John Romita Jr. (hardcover) ($49.99; ISBN: 9780785155355)
  • Marvel Zombies: Christmas Carol (hardcover): Nothing says “Christmas” like a zombie collection released in August. Ho ho ho! ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785157724)
  • Namor: The First Mutant, v. 2: Namor Goes to Hell: It’s rare for any publisher to put such a bald statement of quality on the cover. Bravo, Marvel! ($16.99; ISBN: 9780785151760)
  • New Avengers by Brian Michael Bendis, v. 2 (hardcover) ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785148746)
  • Shadowland: Lots of Shadowland this month! Are you excited? (No, you’re probably not, and that’s not uncommon.) ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785147633)
  • Shadowland: Daredevil: Wait — shouldn’t this be Daredevil: Shadowland? Does the crossover really deserve top billing over Daredevil? ($14.99; ISBN: 9780785145226)
  • Shadowland: Street Heroes: When you can’t bother to come up with a better name than “Street Heroes” for a crossover that was almost entirely about street-level crimefighting, then you may have a problem. Also: Bullseye (featured in the Shadowland: Bullseye one shot) is not a hero. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785148883)
  • Shadowland: Thunderbolts ($15.99; ISBN: 9780785152194)
  • Silver Surfer: Devolution ($14.99; ISBN: 9780785156659)
  • Spider-Man: The Fantastic Spider-Man (hardcover): Might pick this up in paperback, but I have no real desire to even look at it in hardcover. Especially if it’s shrinkwrapped. ($24.99; ISBN: 9780785151067)
  • Spider-Man: The Next Chapter, v. 1: Do you want to see Howard Mackie and John Byrne screw up a Spider-Man relaunch? And by “screw up,” I mean spectacularly. (Tired of the stupid plot twists and characters from the previous titles? Then you’ll love this relaunch, which immediately brings back those same tired characters and plots!) It’s fourteen issues of Spider-mediocrity for $40! ($39.99; ISBN: 9780785157595)
  • Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis & Mike Deodato Ultimate Collection: Really: “ultimate.” The only thing ultimate about this collection is that it’s the final one. Of course, if you really like Mike Deodato or Warren Ellis, your opinion might vary, but I don’t think anyone is going to say this is their best work. ($29.99; ISBN: 9780785158493)
  • Vampire Tales, v. 3: The solicit for this is all messed up. The information has nothing to do with vampires; instead, it’s the description for New Mutants Classic. Since I have a soft spot for Marvel’s older horror properties, I might reconsider once I have better details. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785156048)
  • Wolverine / Hercules: Myths, Monsters & Mutants ($14.99; ISBN: 9780785141105)
  • Wolverine: Wolverine Goes to Hell: See Namor: The First Mutant. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785147855)
  • X-Men Legacy: Collision ($14.99; ISBN: 9780785146698)
  • X-Men: Curse of the Mutants: Of course the X-Men fight vampires. Because once you lose your central metaphor for half a decade, it’s natural to flounder for a new direction. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785148470)
  • X-Men: Curse of the Mutants: Mutants vs. Vampires: I’d only read this if Wolverine gutted Edward Cullen. Or vampire married him, either one. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785152293)
  • X-Men: Prelude to Schism (hardcover): Watch as Wolverine travels to Avignon and declares himself the antipope. ($19.99; ISBN: 9780785156895)

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