The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – July 29, 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: Hedra

Publisher: Image
Words and Art: Jesse Lonergan

What it is: In a glorious exploration of the comics medium with echoes of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Flash Gordon, Chris Ware, and Moebius, a lone astronaut leaves a world ravaged by nuclear war in search of life. What she finds is beyond all explanation.

Why we love it: Indie comics like this are what got me back into comics after a long hiatus. I was previously unaware of Jesse Lonegran’s work, but the art style of this book looks amazing with some truly dynamic page layouts. Can’t wait to check this out on Wednesday.

The Mainstream One: Captain Marvel #18

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Kelly Thompson
Art: Cory Smith

What it is: In the throes of war, Carol finds herself with a bold new role—and a brand-new weapon—the Universal Weapon, in fact. When a Kree soldier bombs a unified city of the Empire, Emperor Hulkling sends his new Accuser to bring down the swift and necessary hammer of justice. But what at first seems like a relatively simple directive will end up challenging Carol on a personal level she had never imagined.

Why we like it: Kind of a slow week for the Big 2. There are a couple first appearances to be aware of between this week’s issues of Captain Marvel and Suicide Squad. I chose Captain Marvel because I’m keeping up with the Empyre event, but this was pretty much a toss up.

The Indie One: Black Magick #12

Publisher: Image
Words: Greg Rucka
Art: Nicola Scott

What it is: NEW STORY ARC! ‘ASCENSION I,’ Part One-The acclaimed series returns, from the New York Times bestselling team GREG RUCKA and NICOLA SCOTT (Wonder Woman). Rowan Black is a cop. Rowan Black is also a witch. Throughout her life, she has struggled to keep these things separate. Now, the walls are beginning to crumble, and Rowan – alienated from her friends, under investigation on the job, and stalked by mysterious forces who are literally hell-bent on using Rowan’s power for their own benefit – is on the verge of crumbling with them. And if these combined forces don’t manage to destroy Rowan-she might just destroy herself first.

Why we like it: I watched Old Guard on Netflix, and hoooo boy was it good. I can’t wait for the sequel, and in the meantime I’m catching up on some of Greg Rucka’s other work. I dropped Black Magick after the first arc completed as I often do with indie series (I find most read better in trade paperback format) but I remember it being very entertaining and the start of a new story arc seems like a good time to jump back on.

The #1 One: X-Factor #1

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Leah Williams
Art: David Baldeon

What it is: MUTANTS HAVE CONQUERED DEATH! By the grace of The Five, the resurrection protocols can bring back any fallen mutant. But such a huge enterprise isn’t without its problems and complications… When a mutant dies, X-Factor is there to investigate how and why to keep the rules of reincarnation. Writer Leah Williams (AMAZING MARY JANE, X-TREMISTS) and artist David Baldeón (DOMINO, WEB WARRIORS) take Northstar, Polaris, Prodigy, Eye-boy, Daken and Prestige into the world of murder and missing persons… Rated T+

Why we like it: I’m not sure that we needed a new X-Force title with 10 variant covers but the team’s composition sounds interesting and I dig the creative team, and hot damn does Eye-boy look freaky as hell. Could be a fun read.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Spider-man Noir #2 (of 5)

Publisher: Marvel
Margaret Stohl
Juan E. Ferreyra
Cover Art: Dan Panosian

What it is: DATELINE 1933! After months of fruitless efforts, the Nazis have discovered an ancient evil in one of their dig sites on the other side of the world. After a friend of a friend is murdered, SCRAPPY YOUNG REPORTER and rookie gumshoe PETER PARKER finds himself torn from his borough and thrust into the action! Unsure of who he can trust, our hero quickly finds himself on A GLOBE-TROTTING ADVENTURE, encountering friend and foe alike – some of whom may even bear a passing resemblances to familiar faces from the Marvel Universe!

Why we like it: I’m getting a Will Eisner’s The Spirit vibe from this gorgeous cover. This is a 1:25 ratio variant so I probably won’t find this Wednesday because none of my shops order that heavily on Spider-man Noir.

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

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