The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – April 17, 2019

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: Naomi #4

Publisher: DC
Words: Brian Michael Bendis
Art: Jamal Campbell

What it is: The newest sensation in the DC Universe discovers the secret behind her birth, her adoption and her connection to the great Multiverse. Hop on board a look at the DC Multiverse you never knew existed and the new mysteries and threats it brings to our world. From the creators behind Jessica Jones and Bitter Root comes a brand-new look at the world of superheroes through the eyes of a most unlikely hero!

Why we love it: Writer Brian Michael Bendis has been flourishing since arriving at DC, penning two critically acclaimed Superman titles and also creating Naomi, DC’s newest rising star. I am really liking Naomi and had issue #3 as my mainstream pick a few weeks back, which was literally sold out at three different shops in my area. For anyone who hasn’t had the opportunity to check out this awesome new series, there will be additional prints of issues #1, 2 and 3 released next week. Great time to jump on.

The Mainstream One: Avengers No Road Home #10 (of 10)

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Al Ewing
Art: Sean Izaakse

What it is: THE ALL-NEW WEEKLY AVENGERS FINALE! The extra-sized finale! Can anything stop Nyx from remaking the cosmos in her image? And will an Avenger die in the attempt? LEGACY #718 Rated T+

Why we like it: While not as strong as last year’s No Surrender, No Road Home has been a really solid Avengers story with some interesting  twists and also new developments for established characters. This week is the last issue of this maxi series and I’m really excited to see how it ends.

The Indie One: Little Bird #2 (of 5)

Publisher: Image
Words: Darcy Van Poelgeest
Art: Ian Bertram

What it is: Little Bird is reunited with her mother in a dreamscape where she begins to uncover the twisted roots of her family tree. Free after 30 years of imprisonment, The Axe once again takes the mantle as leader of the resistance and prepares to wage war against Bishop and his Northern Guard.

Why we like it: The first issue reminded my in many ways to Daniel Warren Johnson’s Extremity. It is a story about war with a strong anti-war message. The artwork is not pretty in a conventional sense, but it is extremely expressive and visceral. And it is a heck of a lot of fun to read.

The #1 One: Mary Shelly Monster Hunter #1

Publisher: Aftershock
Words: Adam Glass, Olivia Briggs
Art: Hayden Sherman

What it is: For nearly two centuries, scholars have wondered how on earth Mary Shelley, a nineteen-year-old girl, was able to conjure one of the most frightening and enduring horror stories of all-time: Frankenstein. But with the recent discovery of Mary Shelley’s secret memoir, the truth is finally revealed: Mary Shelley didn’t just write Frankenstein, she lived it. Traveling back to that historic Geneva winter of 1816, Mary, her fiancé Percy, sisters Claire and Fanny, and the celebrated poet Lord Byron, find themselves guests of the eerie Frankenstein Estate. The macabre and frightening events that follow lead Mary to both a gruesome and shocking discovery. Their mysterious host is not at all what they expected, and their intentions will change the course of Mary’s life for-ever. Brought to life by Adam Glass (ROUGH RIDERS, THE NORMALS, THE LOLLIPOP KIDS) and Olivia Briggs (E TV’s The Arrangement) with art by Hayden Sherman (COLD WAR, The Few, Wasted Space), Mary Shelley: Monster Hunter is historical fiction at its most (After)shocking!

Why we like it: Cool hook on a slow week for #1’s. I love the concept of Mary Shelly being a secret monster hunter and will definitely give this book a flip through on Wednesday.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Batman #69

Publisher: DC
Words:
Tom King
Art:
Yanick Paquette
Cover Art: Francesco Mattina

What it is: The Dark Knight is breaking through the bad dreams and coming out the other side. But is he ready for the culprit waiting through the veil of terror? And what lasting effects might this whole ordeal have on Bruce Wayne’s psyche? With artist Yanick Paquette (WONDER WOMAN: EARTH ONE) jumping on board to tackle the art, ‘Knightmares’ comes to a shocking close. This will be the strangest issue yet-a no-holds-barred journey through Bat-man’s psyche via the inner workings of Arkham Asylum, setting up the next big chapter of Tom King’s epic BATMAN tale. Batman’s future starts now!

Why we like it: I have conflicted emotions about choosing a Mattina for my cover-of-the-week pick. There are lots of allegations of artistic plagiarism and I honestly believe that there is a case to be made, but there’s no denying the talent. You know how the old saying goes, “good artists borrow, great artists steal”.

 

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

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