The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – March 28, 2018

Greetings comic book fans and welcome to another episode of the Crank File. Every Wednesday is new comic book day and on Tuesdays I like to spotlight some of the stuff I’ll be checking out.

Here’s what I’m reading this week:

The Top of the Pile: Dark Knight Metal #6

Publisher: DC
Words: Scott Snyder
Art: Greg Capullo

What it is: All roads lead…to darkness. In the devastating and epic conclusion to DC’s cataclysmic event series, heroes from across the universe make their final charge into the unknown to battle the forces of the Dark Multiverse! Space and time, dreams and nightmares, all will collide – and what is left at the end will leave the DC Universe irrevocably changed!

Why we love it: Better late than never, I suppose. DC’s lucky that Metal has been rock solid, or else I wouldn’t have bothered. But I can’t look away now, not when the end is at hand. Every issue in this series has ended on a note of hopelessness, with our heroes facing increasingly hopeless scenarios. During last issue’s finale, Batman and Superman had been disintegrated at the World Forge, Barbatos and the dark universe had succeeded in crossing over into our universe and the world had basically gone to hell. I can’t imagine how they’ll get out of this mess in one issue but here it is, the conclusion to Dark Nights Metal.

The Mainstream One: Doomsday Clock #4

Publisher: DC
Words: Geoff Johns
Art: Gary Frank

What it is: The series you thought you’d never see reaches its fourth issue with a shocking revelation about the aftermath of Ozymandias’ actions and how they reach into even the darkest corners of the DC Universe. Don’t miss the latest chapter by the acclaimed team of writer Geoff Johns and artist Gary Frank!

Why we like it: The countdown to Doomsday continues, only now it’s counting down at half speed after the announcement that issues would be coming out every other month. We are almost 2 years post Rebirth and it boggles my mind that many of the mysteries seeded back then still haven’t borne fruit. What was the deal with the multiple Supermen? Where is Dr. Manhatten and what role did he play in creating the New52 universe? What was up with the 3 Jokers reveal? With so many loose plot threads still dangling, the clock’s ticking to deliver answers or else I fear fans will just stop caring.

The Indie One: Saga #50

Publisher: Image
Words: Brian K Vaughan
Art: Fiona Staples

What it is: SAGA TURNS 50! To help their friends, Hazel and her parents risk everything to visit a dangerous new world. Celebrating 50 consecutive issues by the same award-winning creative team. Plus, the winners of the latest SAGA COSTUME CONTEST are revealed exclusively in ‘To Be Continued,’ the letters page showcasing the best readers in comics!

Why we like it: I know I said that I would stop highlighting Saga every week that it comes out, but this is a milestone issue for what I consider to be the most important independent comic being published right now. If you haven’t been reading Saga, now is not a good jumping on point as the last two issues have been foreshadowing some serious shit going down in this arc. And if you haven’t been reading Saga, I would highly recommend that you remedy that situation immediately.

 The #1 One: Bruce Lee Walk of the Dragon

Publisher: Darby Pop
Words: Nicole Dubuc, Shannon Lee, Jeff Kline
Art: Brandon McKinney

What it is: Philosopher/teacher/real-life superhero Bruce Lee is back. And, let’s be honest, the world needs him now more than ever. Taking a brief respite from battling an otherworldly evil, Bruce Lee attempts to navigate modern-day Southern California despite still suffering from amnesia and having been ‘out of the loop’ for over 45 years. Unfortunately, what was supposed to be a simple ‘lunch run’ soon turns into a comedy of errors involving mistaken identity, a Film Festival,’ and the pokey. And despite never being one to initiate fisticuffs, Bruce continues to find it difficult to both hide his martial arts skills – and keep his shirt on.

Why we like it: I’m a huge fan of Bruce Lee, but not necessarily his comics. These Darby Pop comics are being produced under the watchful eye of Bruce’s daughter Shannon and it’s definitely aimed towards a younger audience, lacking any gratuitous violence, controversy or compelling drama. I enjoy the “man out of time” hook and watching a newly unfrozen Bruce navigate modern society is entertaining. But otherwise these are fairly vanilla stories that focus on fun, comedy and morality.

 The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Damnation Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider #1

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Christopher Sebela
Art: Phil Noto
Cover Art: Clayton Crain

What it is: DAMNATION TIE-IN! Johnny Blaze takes the fight to a different devil than he usually faces – Mephisto! But Mephisto will show Johnny his own brand of suffering – and give Johnny PLENTY of reasons for vengeance. Rated T+

Why we like it: Hot damn, this cover is straight fire!


That’s all I got this week. Until next time, carpe comics!

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