The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – October 30, 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: Dead Man Logan #12 (of 12)

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Ed Brisson
Art: Mike Henderson

What it is: LEGENDS NEVER DIE! ‘A shockingly well-constructed farewell’ – Comic Watch ‘Violent fun’ – Comics: The Gathering ‘A masterpiece’ – YouDon’ Parental Advisory

Why we love it: Marking the end of the Old Man Logan saga. Hard to believe the character has been around for 3 years, but the old man has done a commendable job filling the canuckle-head sized hole that was left after Wolverine died. But now that Logan classic is back among the living, well I guess the 616 just wasn’t big enough for the both of them.

The Mainstream One:  Joker Killer Smile #1 (of 3)

Publisher: DC
Words: Jeff Lemire
Art: Andrea Sorrentino

What it is: Everyone knows The Joker doesn’t have the most promising history with psychotherapists. In fact, no one’s even been able to diagnose him. But that doesn’t matter to the confident, world-beating Dr. Ben Arnell; he’s going to be the one to unravel this unknowable mind. There’s no way The Joker could ever get through the therapeutic walls Ben has built around himself. Right? There’s no way The Joker’s been entering his house at night…right? There’s no way The Joker has stood over his son’s bed, and put that book in his hands, the one with the, the, the… The Eisner-nominated creative team of Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino (GREEN ARROW, Gideon Falls) reunite for a psychological horror story where nothing is as it seems, your eyes can’t be trusted and Mr. Smiles is waiting behind the basement door. Wait, who’s Mr. Smiles?

Why we like it: Speaking of Old Man Logan, the creative team that originally launched the OML series after Marvel’s Secret Wars is bringing us a new Joker mini-series. I love Lemire and Sorrentino’s run on the New 52 Green Arrow, and their current hit Image comic Gideon Falls remains one of my favorite pull books. Follow the talent and expect good things.

The Indie One: The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #99

Publisher: IDW
Words: Tom Waltz
Art: Dave Watcher

What it is: City at War, Part 7. New York City descends into chaos after the unthinkable events of the last issue! Bishop is relentless in his pursuit, and a final showdown between Donatello and Metalhead will prove explosive!

Why we like it: One more issue before IDW’s TMNT hits its milestone 100th issue and you can be sure that there are going to be big surprises in this issue.

The #1 One: Basketful of Heads 1 (of 6)

Publisher: DC Black Label
Words: Joe Hill
Art: Reiko Murakami

What it is: DC AND BEST-SELLING AUTHOR JOE HILL PRESENT HILL HOUSE COMICS, A NEW POP-UP LINE DEDICATED TO BONE-CHILLING HORROR! The rain lashes the grassy dunes of Brody Island, and seagulls scream above the bay. A slender figure in a raincoat carries a large wicker basket, which looks like it might be full of melons… covered by a bloodstained scrap of the American flag. This is the story of June Branch, a young woman trapped with four cunning criminals who have snatched her boyfriend for deranged reasons of their own. Now she must fight for her life with the help of an impossible 8th-century Viking axe that can pass through a man’s neck in a single swipe-and leave the severed head still conscious and capable of supernatural speech. Each disembodied head has a malevolent story of its own to tell, and it isn’t long before June finds herself in a desperate struggle to hack through their lies and manipulations… racing to save the man she loves before time runs out. Plus, in the premiere chapter of the backup story ‘Sea Dogs,’ which sails across all the Hill House Comics titles!

Why we like it: A horror comic from Joe Hill, son of horror legend Steven King and creator of the much-loved Locke and Key series.  Should be a fun book to get you in the Halloween mood.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Venom #19

Publisher: Marvel
Donny Cates
Iban Coello
Cover Art: Jae-Hyung Lee

What it is: ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN! A FAMILY AFFAIR! • As Carnage rules and chaos reigns, the symbiotic offspring of VENOM make their presence known by hunting Eddie Brock’s son Dylan! • But there’s more to Dylan than Venom, Carnage, or even The Maker understand – and once they learn the truth, nothing will be the same! Rated T+

Why we like it: Damn, I wish the Gwenom covers were done this well and this that wasn’t a Mary Jane variant (as far as I know, MJ never bonded to a Klyntar symbiote). Still this is cover-of-the-year worthy.

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

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