Hey there comic book fans, good to have you back for another piece off the Crank File. How many of you out there went to the Rhode Island Comic Con last weekend? After last year’s debacle I still wasn’t ready to make the drive down, so instead I spent my Sunday over at a small convention being held at a local elks lodge. I was able to snag some really nice books at a bargain, including a Harbinger #1, and first appearances of Gamora and the Winter Soldier. But the word from people who went to RICC on Saturday was that the event organizers did a much better job managing the nerd herd this year. Attendance was high as expected, but crowd density was kept under control by spreading the event out across two convention halls and implementing scan badges. The only real complaints I heard were about $40 parking and Carrie Fisher being a later scratch due to illness. Fisher promised that she would return next year, and you know what? You just might see me there next year as well.
Here’s what I’m reading this week:
The Top of the Pile: All-New All-Different Avengers #1 Marvel
Writer: Mark Waid
Art: Adam Kubert
The Avengers are dead–long live the Avengers! Earth’s Mightiest Heroes–Captain America, Thor, Vision, and Iron Man–are living separate lives, not tied to any team–but when a threat from beyond the stars targets our world, fate draws them together once more, alongside Nova, Ms. Marvel, and Miles Morales a.k.a. Spider-Man!
My two favorite new Marvel heroes, Miles Morales and Kamala Khan are leading a new team of earth’s mightiest heroes. Written by the indispensable Mark Waid, the only hard part about picking up this issue is choosing between the Ross regular cover and the hip-hop variant.
The Mainstream One: Secret Wars #7 Marvel
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Art: Esad Ribic
THE GREATEST SACRIFICE!
Don’t get me wrong, the constant delays with the main Secret Wars story are completely inexcusable. It’s the second week of November, Marvel’s all-new, all-different universe has been in existence for a solid month now and we STILL have no idea how we got here. All of this would make it easy to disregard Secret Wars and just move on, since apparently it doesn’t matter in the new Marvel universe anyways, but the quality of storytelling has been so high that I feel compelled see it through to the end regardless. Just please try to wrap it up before 2016 Marvel.
The Indie One: Airboy #4 Image
Writer: James Robinson
Art: Greg Hinkle
Is this a dream, reality, or somewhere in between? All James Robinson and Greg Hinkle know is that now that they’re in Airboy’s world and not the bars of San Francisco, they have to put down the bottle, put away the drugs, zip up their flies-and actually act like heroes. Except they don’t know how to be heroes. And if they die, will they just wake up…or really perish?
The booze and drug fueled adventure reaches its explosive conclusion in the final issue of what has been one of my favorite mini-series this year. Definitely not one for the kids, Airboy is a bombastic blend of humor, vulgarity and existential insight. Led by the pure hearted Airboy, our heroes have traveled back in time to fight history’s evils and to battle their own inner demons. A metaphysical masterpiece, I cannot wait to see how it all ends on Wednesday.
The #1 One: The Goddamned #1 Image
Writer: Jason Aaron
Art: R.M. Guera
‘And the earth was filled with violence.’ Genesis 6:11. It’s 1655 years after Eden, and life on Earth has already gone to hell. The world of man is a place of wanton cruelty and wickedness. Prehistoric monsters and stone-age marauders roam the land. Murder and destruction are the rule of the day. Humankind is a failed experiment. This is life before the Flood. The story of man on the verge of his first apocalypse. Welcome to the world of THE GODDAMNED.
The creators of the seminal crime series Scalped, reunite for a new ongoing series of stark and brutal biblical noir, and it sounds like an absolute winner. This one’s easy to jump on board with a special over-sized debut issue featuring thirty pages of story for only $3.99.
The One I’m Buying for the Cover: All-New All-Different Wolverine #1 Marvel (Marquez Variant)
Writer: Tom Taylor
Art: David Lopez
X-23 was created to be a weapon and for a time, that’s all she was. But with the help of her mentor, Logan-the original Wolverine-she escaped that dark past. Tragically, Logan has fallen, but Laura will continue in his footsteps as a hero. Recent events have her doing everything in her power to keep those around her alive, as violent forces are hell-bent on mutual destruction. If anyone can stop them, it’s Laura. She is the best there is at what she does. She is THE ALL-NEW WOLVERINE.
I’m not completely sold on Laura Kinney taking up the mantle of her father/clone yet and I’m skeptical about how Ms. Wolverine will be received by fans. I think most Wolverine fans will gravitate towards Old Man Logan, but this cover is just too good to pass on. The Marquez variant is a beautiful homage to the original Wolverine’s first appearance at the end of The Incredible Hulk #180. Nuff said.
Last Week’s Leftovers: Klaus #1 Boom
Writer: Grant Morrison
Art: Dan Mora
Set in a dark fantastic past of myth and magic, Klaus tells the story of how Santa Claus really came to be. Where did he begin? What was he like when he was young? Why does he do what he does? How does he do what he does? And what happens when he faces his greatest challenge? Drawing on Santa Claus’ wilder roots in Viking lore and Siberian shamanism-taking in the creepier side of Christmas, and characters like the sinister Krampus-Klaus is a ‘Santa Claus: Year One.’
I loved that description, “A Santa Claus Year One”. Morrison is the master of deconstructing classic characters and stories and then re-imagining them in a new light. It’s Santa, and Santa’s a bad ass. Klaus #1 was all sorts of awesome. It was violent, trippy and weird, par for the course on a Morrison title, but it was comprehensibly weird. With Christmas just around the corner, you can start getting into the spirit with the first issue of this 6 part mini-series from Boom studios.