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August 28, 2013


This Isn't A Library: Notable Releases To The Comics Direct Market

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Here are the books that make an impression on me staring at this week's no-doubt largely accurate list of books shipping from Diamond Comic Distributors, Inc. to comic book and hobby shops across North America.

I might not buy all of the works listed here. I might not buy any. You never know. I'd sure look at the following, though.

*****

MAY130382 LOAC ESSENTIALS HC VOL 03 POLLY AND HER PALS 1933 $24.99
It's an odd week in the comics shops, but you can't go wrong with these Library Of American Comics efforts so let's start there. Cliff Sterrett isn't one of those cartoonists with whom I have an already-settled "we'll just stay friends" relationship, but he's not exactly on the immediate call-after-I-die list, either. I'd love to read some more, and a full year of the strip in its prime seems like a great way to reintroduce myself to that material.

imageJUL131197 HENRY AND GLENN FOREVER AND EVER #1 (MR) $5.00
JUN130554 MORNING GLORIES #30 (MR) [DIG] $3.50
JUN130560 SEX #6 (MR) [DIG] $2.99
JUN130027 ITTY BITTY HELLBOY #1 $2.99
JUN130047 MASSIVE #15 $3.50
JUN130045 MIND MGMT #14 $3.99
JUN130249 ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN #4 $3.99
JUN130197 BATMAN INCORPORATED SPECIAL #1 $4.99
An odd and not particularly strong week for comic-book format style comics, which means my eyes would roam a bit. The Henry And Glenn comic should be a decent showcase for a lot of Tom Neely's friends-in-comics, and that's a joke that by its nature is funnier the more comics are done. I don't understand Morning Glories, but I sort of enjoy the fact that I don't understand it. The Sex is Joe Casey, and is about as dense and odd as comics come right now. The Itty Bitty Hellboy is Art Baltazar and Franco, the best at that tiny-superheroes style that you see around here and there on-line and usually not in comics shops because, you know, kids stuff = ick in that world a lot of the time. Massive and Mind Mgmt are two of Dark Horse's series featuring in-their-prime mainstream comics genre creator, a sign of their seriousness when it comes to making that format work on the stands. The two DC comics are the on-line Superman thing gone into print, which usually has a comic or two worth reading and the non-Grant Morrison "Batman, Incorporated" book that features a lot of the characters from Morrison's lengthy run.

APR130077 CRIME DOES NOT PAY ARCHIVES HC VOL 05 $49.99
This is one of those series that I'm super-glad exists, and I have the previous four volumes, but I've maybe read 3/4ths of one? I guess that sounds like a slight dismissal, but I prefer to see it as my having such a strong desire to own this material that I'm happy to buy it ahead of my being able to make the time to enjoy it. Charlie Biro 4-ever.

FEB130373 STEVE DITKO MONSTERS HC VOL 02 KONGA $34.99
I don't remember listing the first one of these -- I probably did, though. At any rate, I'm not as big a fan of all of Steve Ditko's work that many comic-book nuts are, but I do like the monster material and I always enjoy looking at Ditko's pages. One to pick up, for sure.

JUN130618 ROCKET RACCOON TP TALES FROM HALF WORLD $7.99
This is Mike Mignola on the Marvel character turned potential breakout star of next year's relative risk of a Guardians Of The Galaxy movie. I enjoy Mignola's earlier work, although I have no special fondness for this character and find the shtick a little tiresome and obvious. It could potentially work great up on screen; then again, I thought Howard the Duck would do well, too. Anthropomorphism... what are you going to do?

FEB130216 ABSOLUTE SUPERMAN BATMAN HC VOL 01 $99.99
MAY130257 LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN OMNIBUS TP $29.99
APR130263 SANDMAN OMNIBUS HC VOL 01 (MR) $150.00
MAY130232 JACK KIRBYS OMAC ONE MAN ARMY CORPS TP $19.99
A slight sampling of works from that awesome part of DC comics that seems dedicated in whole rather than just part to the republication of material in various book formats. I'd love to see all of these, I'd probably only eventually buy the second one. I love those OMAC comics -- and it's a Jack Kirby comic you can buy on Kirby Day -- but I have them in comic book form, most of them twice. I assume that the OMAC in questions is a reprint of those original Kirby books rather than something that's come since, but you should definitely look inside before you buy.

imageMAY131432 DEVIL IS IN DETAILS EXAMINING MATT MURDOCK & DAREDEVIL SC $15.99
Daredevil is the most fun Marvel Comics character from a number of historical perspective: the Wally Wood Road Not Taken (by Marvel or Wood), the fact that it is largely divorced from both Kirby and Ditko, the great Bill Everett's involvement, the eventually Frank Miller-driven revival/rebirth, and so on. This is a book about comics, so be warned. But I'm down.

MAY131196 SCIENCE A DISCOVERY IN COMICS HC $19.99
This is a survey of scientific progress from Margaret de Heer, and a follow-up to a similar book about philosophy. I don't do the job I should covering NBM comics, but this seems like a worthy project.

JUN130419 RIP KIRBY HC VOL 06 $49.99
This is the second volume featuring the art of the greatly-underrated John Prentice, who isn't exactly Alex Raymond when it comes to name recognition -- I'd forgotten he'd taken over until someone reminded me -- but could really make with the handsome art.

JUN130411 SAM KIETH SAMPLINGS & DABBLINGS SC $19.99
I have no idea what of Sam Kieth's we're getting here, but I always look at whatever he publishes. It's a great thing that a lot of his work has come back to market in the last 48 months or so.

JUN130410 VISUAL FUNK JIM MAHFOOD ART HC $49.99
I wan't aware Jim Mahfood was working with IDW; that seems like a solid and appropriate partnership.

MAR138285 COMPLETE PEANUTS HC BOX SET 1963-1966 $49.95
JUN131143 COMPLETE PEANUTS HC BOX SET 1963-1966 $49.95
I'm very glad that Fantagraphics is keeping various earlier books and sets from this series in print. I don't know if that's part of the contract or not -- I guess it could be -- but it's not easy for a publisher of any size to keep such a massive number of works available so just on execution alone it's super-admirable.

JUN131211 SMURFS GN VOL 16 AEROSMURF $5.99
JUN131212 SMURFS HC VOL 16 AEROSMURF $10.99
I have greatly enjoyed these Smurfs books, more than I thought I would, although the eye strain at the kid-friendly size at which these are published is a squint-a-thon.

MAY131418 ALTER EGO #120 $8.95
MAY131419 BACK ISSUE #67 $8.95
That is an amazing number of issues, on both of those publication.

APR131132 NUDNIK REVEALED HC $29.99
Gene Deitch! It was actually great to meet Deitch at San Diego last summer; his fans were super-polite and super, super intense.

MAY131141 END O/T F$$$ING WORLD GN (MR) $19.99
Finally, this is Chuck Forsman's book, which has been previewed and pre-released released and promoted pretty well even if you leave out the fact that it was serialized to several hundred readers as a series of mini-comics. I enjoyed the work, and I think Forsman is a cartoonist to watch.

*****

The full list of this week's releases, including some titles with multiple cover variations and a long, impressive list of toys and other stuff that isn't comics, can be found here. Despite this official list there's no guarantee a comic will show up in the stores as promised, or in all of the stores as opposed to just a few. Also, stores choose what they carry and don't carry so your shop may not carry a specific publication. There are a lot of comics out there.

To find your local comic book store, check this list; and for one I can personally recommend because I've shopped there, albeit a while back, try this.

The above titles are listed with their Diamond order code in the first field, which may assist you in finding comics at your shop or having them order something for you they don't have in-stock. Ordering through a direct market shop can be a frustrating experience, so if you have a direct line to something -- you know another shop has it, you know a bookstore has it -- I'd urge you to consider all of your options.

If I failed to list your comic, that's because I hate you.

*****

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