What I’m Reading This Week : September 22, 2021

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: Nightwing #84

Publisher: DC
Words: Tom Taylor
Art: Bruno Redondo

What it is: When the Bat-Family receives misleading information and incorrect directions from Oracle, ones Babs didn’t send herself, they realize Oracle’s system has been hacked! But who is powerful enough to break into Oracle’s own super-secure network? And what personal information is now at risk? Not only that, this mysterious Anti-Oracle is taking advantage of Gotham City’s state of fear and has bombarded the city with falsities, spreading even more fear. With the Bat-Team’™s comms unreliable, Nightwing heads to Gotham to find the source of Anti-Oracle’s transmissions.

Why we love it: I can’t believe that Nightwing is at the top of the pile, but here we are. Tom Taylor and Bruno Redondo are creating something special in this book that is so fresh and so enjoyable, it has completely rejuvenated the character.

The Mainstream One: Death of Doctor Strange #1

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Jed MacKay
Art: Lee Garbett

What it is: DEATH COMES FOR THE SORCERER SUPREME! Doctor Stephen Strange is the world’s greatest neurosurgeon and Earth’s Sorcerer Supreme. He defends our planet from the supernatural and interdimensional threats no other hero is equipped to handle. But what would happen if he unexpectedly died? Who would protect Earth and keep the mystical evils at bay? And most importantly…who killed Stephen Strange?! The final chapter in the life of Doctor Strange starts here by Jed MacKay (Moon Knight, Black Cat) and Lee Garbett (Captain Marvel)! Rated T+

Why we like it: Skottie Young says what we’re all thinking and it is glorious.

The Indie One: King Spawn #2

Publisher: Image
Words: Sean Murphy
Art: Javier Fernandez

What it Is: One of the most vile and horrific villains in the SPAWN mythology returns: Billy Kincaid, now, simply called KINCAID. But his new campaign to murder is more than it seems. Like everyone else in SPAWN’S UNIVERSE battle lines have been drawn, and all-out war is about to be unleashed.

Why we like it: I was more than a little skeptical about the Todd Father’s plans to expand the Spawn Universe, but he chose some very talented creators and the first issue of King Spawn definitely exceeded expectations. In this issue they are bringing back a classic villain who first appeared all the way back in issues #5. As a teenager reading Spawn, I remember thinking that Billy Kincaid was the most horribly twisted bad-guy ever and knew he would become a mainstay of Spawn’s rogues gallery. And then he was quickly dispatched of by issue #7. Let’s see if he can stick around a little longer this time.

The #1 One: Batman Secret Files: Miracle Molly #1

Publisher: DC
Words: James Tynion IV
Art: Dani

What it is: Since Miracle Molly’s explosive first appearance in the pages of Batman, people have been clamoring to know more about the colorful transhumanist vigilante! Now the wait is over, the history of Gotham’s latest breakout star is revealed! It’s a story so secret even Miracle Molly doesn’t remember it! Discover what led a regular Gothamite to reject their past, name, and humanity to embrace the promise of a blank slate, the promise of the Unsanity Collective! Batman series writer James Tynion IV teams up with rising superstar artist Dani to bring you all the way back to the beginning of Miracle Molly in this exciting and integral Fear State special.

Why we like it: The countdown is on for JT4 at DC. Get it while you can, because once he goes he may never come back.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: X-Corp #5

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Tini Howard
Art: Alberto Foche
Cover Art: David Aja

What it is: HOSTILE TAKEOVER! It’s impossible to succeed in business without making a few enemies. Noblesse Pharmaceuticals sends their most cutthroat team against X-CORP once and for all, and they’ve come to collect. Rated T+

Why we like it: I love David Aja. He can somehow make cover art that looks both simplistic and exquisite in the same breath.

Until next time, carpe comics!

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