The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – July 8, 2020

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: Fantastic Four Empyre #0

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Dan Slott
Art: R.B. Silva

What it is: ‘The Last of the Kree/Skrull Warriors’ – a pivotal issue, not just for EMPYRE, but for the future of the FF! In the most unlikely of places, the Fantastic Four witness the final conflict of the Kree/Skrull War… and the fate of these final warriors will mark a stunning change in the lives of Marvel’s First Family for years to come. All this, and the introduction of a long hidden Elder of the Universe… the Profiteer! Witness the first appearance of this new, major player in the cosmos! Rated T+

Why we love it: I usually pass on these event crossover book, but I’ve needed something to give me those nostalgic feels and Fantastic Four is my go to. There’s also a first appearance of a new villain which makes this Empyre tie-in top of the pile worthy.

The Mainstream One: Justice League #48

Publisher: DC
Words: Simon Spurrier
Art: Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan

What it is: As writer Simon Spurrier jumps on board for the start of the three-part tale “The Rule of War,” it’s close encounters…of a Justice League kind! After answering a distress signal from distant space, Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, the Flash, and Green Lantern discover an abandoned cargo ship full of young aliens! When the League attempts to return the children to their home planet, they are met with awe, terror, and war! Thus begins a three-part storyline that will take the League to a previously unknown planet, with an all-new species, a dangerous mystery, and a new, otherworldly villain.

Why we like it: More new villains!

The Indie One: Sonata #11

Publisher: Image
Words: David Hine
Art: Brian Haberline, Geirrod Vandyke

What it is: END OF STORY ARC ‘THE CITADEL: DEATH IS NOT THE END’ Part Five Triumph turns to despair as Sonata returns as her people’s savior, only to find that there is no one left to save.

Why we like it: It was a toss up between this book and Something Is Killing the Children, but Sonata gets the nod on the strength of a gorgeous Jay Anacleto cover. 

The #1 One: DCeased Dead Planet #1 (of 6)

Publisher: DC
Words: Tom Taylor
Art: Trevor Hairsine

What it is: After a corrupted Anti-Life Equation turned billions into monsters – including Earth’s Greatest Heroes – our planet was as good as dead. Years later, a distress call brings Damian Wayne, Jon Kent, and Cassie Sandsmark – the Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman of Earth 2 – back to a dead planet… but what will this new Justice League find waiting for them? If life still exists on Earth, who – or what – is lying in wait for these heroes? The original creative team of Tom Taylor and Trevor Hairsine reunite for the sequel to the 2019 blockbuster series DCeased!

Why we like it: The sequel to the enormously fun DCeased mini-series follows a group of Teen Titans who have been promoted to Justice Leaguer after O.G. Supes, Bats and Wondy were killed in the first volume. The kick-ass Blade Runner homage by Ben Oliver is icing on the cake.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Batman #94

Publisher: DC
James Tynion IV
Guillem March
Cover Art: Francesco Mattina

What it is: The Designer’s machinations have left Batman’s life in tatters! Gotham City’s ambitious rebuilding has skittered to a halt as new powers are rising to shape its destiny-and Batman is powerless to stop them! With no Alfred or Bat-Family to lean on, the Dark Knight stands alone against the ascendance of his greatest adversary!

Why we like it: Nice homage to Alex Ross’ iconic Batman Harley Quinn cover. There’s a lot of evidence pointing to Punchline taking over Harley Quinn’s place in comics sometime in the near future, but she’ll never take HQ’s place in our hearts.

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

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