The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – October 18, 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: Doomsday Clock #12 (of 12)

Publisher: DC
Words: Geoff John
Art: Gary Frank

What it is: This is it! The final showdown between Dr. Manhattan and Superman shakes up the DC Universe to its very core! But can even the Man of Steel walk out from the shadow of Manhattan?

Why we love it: Once upon a time, Doomsday Clock was going to be a central DC event that redefined the entire universe. A full year of delays later, it may still do so, but I wonder if anyone still cares. Such a shame since this book held so much promise when it was first launched. Although the schedule constantly wavered, the quality did not, which is why it still makes the top of the pile.

The Mainstream One: Batman #85

Publisher: DC
Words: Tom King
Art: Mikel Janin

What it is: The stunning conclusion to ‘City of Bane’ is here! How will Flashpoint Batman be vanquished from our dimension? What will become of Gotham Girl now that she’s betrayed all she knows? How will the Bat team cope without Alfred? Will Catwoman stick around? Who will rebuild Gotham City? Is Batman ever going to be Batman again? The event of the summer now closes out the year, setting the stage for a whole new path for the Dark Knight Detective. You don’t dare miss the extra-sized concluding chapter to Tom King’s epic run on Batman-and it all leads to the new Batman and Catwoman series!

Why we like it: Tom King’s tenure at Batman wasn’t bad, but it was also far from being the ground breaking series that I had hoped for. It had shown glimpses of greatness and potential, but ultimately this series will be mostly remembered by fans as an anticlimactic run that peaked with a disappointing Bat Cat non-wedding.

The Indie One: Skulldigger Skeleton Kid

Publisher: Dark Horse
Words: Jeff Lemire
Art: Tonci Zonjic, David Stewart

What it is: Spiral City finds itself trapped in a vicious cycle of crime, corruption, and violence. With the heart of the city at stake, a vigilante rises in Skulldigger. However, when the nefarious Grimjim escapes from prison, will Skulldigger and his ward, Skeleton Boy, be enough to save Spiral City?

Why we like it: Love Jeff Lemire. Love the world of Black Hammer. This could have been a top of the pile contender on a slower week.

The #1 One: Wonder Woman Dead Earth #1 (of 4)

Publisher: DC
Words and Art: Daniel Warren Johnson

What it is: The celebrated creator of Murder Falcon and Extremity and artist of The Ghost Fleet, Daniel Warren Johnson brings bold sci-fi chops to his DC debut with a harrowing vision of Wonder Woman unlike anything you’ve ever seen. Princess Diana of Themyscira left paradise to save Man’s World from itself. When Wonder Woman awakens from a centuries-long sleep to discover the Earth reduced to a nuclear wasteland, she knows she failed. Trapped alone in a grim future, Diana must protect the last human city from titanic monsters while uncovering its secret of this dead Earth-and how she may be responsible for it.

Why we like it: I’ve been making a point to pick up anything by Daniel Warren Johnson since devouring both Extermity and Murder Falcon. This guy is one of the finest talents working in comics right now.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: King Thor #4 (of 4)

Publisher: Marvel
Jason Aaron
Esad Ribic
Cover Art: Mike Del Mundo

What it is: THE FINAL CHAPTER OF THE YEARS-SPANNING, AWARD-WINNING SAGA! The sun has gone black. Midgard isn’t far behind. The entire Multiverse is dying – and with it, the last of the gods. A millennium ago, the God of Thunder heard a whisper: ‘Gorr was right.’ Now Gorr the God of God-Butchers ascends to his final murder: the All-Father of all existence. Plus, a who’s who of Jason’s past THOR collaborators and a few surprise guests help close out the story in thunderous style! Rated T+

Why we like it: Jason Aaron is honored with a much deserved cover after writing the Thor series for the better part of a decade.

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

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