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: The Question: The Deaths of Vic Sage #1 (of 4)
Words: Jeff Lemire
Art: Dennis Cowan, Bill Sienkiewicz
What it is: For years, Vic Sage has worn the faceless mask of the Question to clean up the streets of Hub City by sheer force of will. He knows right from wrong. He knows black from white. But what happens when he is drawn into a conspiracy that reaches from the heights of Hub City power to the depths of its underground tunnels? What happens when things stop being black-and-white and start getting a little gray? And what happens when, in a secret chamber deep beneath the city, Vic Sage meets his own end…and his new beginning? Eisner-winning writer Jeff Lemire joins forces with the legendary art team of Denys Cowan and Bill Sienkiewicz to resurrect Vic Sage, only to destroy him all over again…and again…
Why we love it: As I always say, follow the creative talent and you will rarely go wrong. I will not be missing this mini-series from two modern-day legends in the comics industry, Jeff Lemire and Bill Sienkiewicz. I love how insane the plot sounds, even though it sounds awfully familiar to Moira McTaggart’s backstory in House of X.
The Mainstream One: Captain Marvel #12
Words: Kelly Thompson
Art: Carmen Nunez Carnero
What it is: CAPTAIN MARVEL VERSUS THE AVENGERS! THE LAST AVENGER! Captain Marvel has fought off alien hordes. Rescued X-Men. Punched Thanos in the face. Literally saved the world. She now faces her greatest challenge: kill the Avengers. Has one of the world’s most powerful heroes gone dark? But why? And what does this mean for Carol…for the world? Life on earth will never be the same. Kelly Thompson teams up with Eisner-nominated artist Lee Garbett for a brand-new arc – and a bold new direction! Rated T+
Why we like it: The descent of Dark Carol starts here, with the brutal murder of an Avenger that will leave your jaw on the floor. Add to it a killer Mark Brooks cover and this book is officially a double homicide.
The Indie One: Olympia #1 (of 5)
Words: Curt Pires, Tony Pires
Art: Alex Diotto, Dee Cunniffe
What it is: MINISERIES PREMIERE! DOUBLE-SIZED FIRST ISSUE! Elon is a latchkey kid who spends his days alone reading comic books-until his favorite superhero, Olympian, comes crashing off the page and into reality! But as he nurses his wounded and delirious hero back to health, he discovers Olympian isn’t the only thing that came through… something evil followed him. A comedic yet heartfelt love letter to the comics medium, OLYMPIA is also a meditation on hope and loss, conceived by CURT PIRES (Wyrd) and his father, TONY PIRES, while Tony was undergoing treatment for cancer.
Why we like it: I’d guess that everyone reading this has been touched by cancer in some way. I think the solicit above pretty much says it all.
The #1 One: Batman White Knight Presents Von Freeze #1
Words: Sean Murphy
Art: Klaus Janson
What it is: The world of Batman: White Knight expands with this standalone tale! On the night of Bruce Wayne’s traumatic birth, Victor Fries must intervene to save the lives of Martha Wayne and the future Batman. As the evening unfolds, Victor distracts Thomas with the incredible tale of his own father figures-one a Nazi, the other a Jew-and their complex connection to Wayne Laboratories. As the Third Reich roars into power, the deep friendship and working relationship between the Baron von Fries and his research partner, Jacob Smithstein, is in crisis. Ordered by Himmler to speed development of their cryotechnology in service of world domination, Smithstein is forced to go into hiding and compromise his moral code in order to save his wife and infant daughter, Nora, from persecution and certain death. When the S.S. ramps up surveillance over the project, young Victor begins to question his father’s true allegiance. Both families are driven toward an impossible choice and a sinister standoff, and Victor makes a pact with Smithstein that will ripple through generations.
Why we like it: Sean Murphy’s White Knight alt-universe spin-off has been a bonafide hit and I really hope he gets a turn writing the main series in the future. I think they probably revealed too much in the description, because I was going to pick this up regardless and if feels like some of the surprise has been spoiled.
The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Absolute Carnage #5 (of 5)
Words: Donny Cates
Art: Ryan Stegman
Cover Art: Inhyuk Lee
What it is: VENOM AND CARNAGE – TO THE DEATH! Rated T
Why we like it: Daaaaamn. The book may be rated T but the cover art is a hard R. I think Inhyuk aped Artgerm’s cover for Absolute Carnage #1 a bit, but that’s still a dope cover.
That’s all I got this week. Until next time, carpe comics!