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: Batman #112
Words: Brandon Thomas, James Tynion IV
Art: Jason Howard, Jorge Jimenez
What it is: A story over a year in the making and set into motion with Infinite Frontier #0, Fear State begins! Batman played into the hands of the Scarecrow, who has unleashed a coordinated attack on Gotham City through his manipulation of Simon Saint and Peacekeeper-01! But there are other forces at work with the emergence of an Anti-Oracle spreading fake news across all channels and inciting terror and violence on the streets of Gotham! Backup: Clownhunter has turned down help from Batman, Leslie Thompkins, the Red Hood, and everyone else who has offered it to him, thinking that he can handle being a vigilante on the streets of Gotham City by himself. But when he takes a shot at fighting the Scarecrow one-on-one, he’ll learn very quickly how much in this city he’s not ready for yet. NEW HERO – PEACEKEEPER X!
The Mainstream One: Black Manta #1
Words: Chuck Brown
Art: Valentino De Landro
What it is: Following his appearance in the Aquaman 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular, the scourge of the seas now gets his own series. Black Manta is chasing a rare metal with incredible powers, and heâs not the only one who wants to get his hands on it, friend and foe alike! Torrid is a former ally who has escaped hell (literally!) to answer the call of the metal, but can Manta trust her? Hopefully so because he might need her help to fend off Devil Ray, a new competitor for the role of the biggest villain underwater. Both Aquaman: The Becoming #1 and Black Manta #1 feature a connecting variant cover by superstar artist Francis Manapul! INTRODUCING NEW HERO TORRID AND VILLAIN DEVIL RAY!
The Indie One: Eve #5 (of 5)
Words: Victor Lavalle
Art: Jo Mi-Gyeong
What it Is: Will Eve finally fulfill her destiny as humanity’s last hope? Eve’s long journey is coming to a head as she finally arrives at the Vault, which is now sunk deep below the ocean surface off the coast of Washington State. But what, or who, she finds within will either lead Eve to complete the most important mission of all time or complete the world’s destruction. The epic conclusion to the dystopian fable no comic reader can afford to miss!
The #1 One: Mazebook #1
Publisher: Dark Horse
Words and Art: Jeff Lemire
What it is: From New York Times bestselling and Eisner Award-winning Black Hammer and Sweet Tooth creator Jeff Lemire comes this ambitious and haunting comic series about family, mourning, and reality. A lonely building inspector still grieving the loss of his puzzle-loving daughter receives a mysterious phone call one night from a girl claiming it’s her and that she’s trapped in the middle of a labyrinth. Convinced that this child is contacting him from beyond this world, he uses an unfinished maze from one of her journals and a map of the city to trace an intricate path through a different plane of reality on an intense and melancholy adventure to bring his daughter back home. The only way out is in . . .
The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Green Lantern 2021 Annual #1
Words: Ryan Cady
Art: Sami Basri
Cover Art: David Nakayama
What it is: Once an agoraphobic scared to even leave her room, Jessica Cruz overcame her fear to become a Green Lantern and face the darkest and deadliest threats in the universe. But now, Jessicaâs gone from overcoming fear to using it as a weapon. When Yellow Lanterns attacked the Green Lantern Sector House she took refuge in when the Central Power battery was destroyed, Jessica turned the tables on them, giving them something to be afraid of, as she beat them one-by-one. But now that sheâs been offered a place in the Sinestro Corps, will she accept?
Until next time, carpe comics!