Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary











January 26, 2016


This Isn’t A Library: New, Notable Releases Into 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.

*****

NOV151333 BEVERLY GN (MR) $21.95
There's nothing more fun than picking up a debut graphic novel. You can tell Drnaso is from Chicago in part because the blurbs are from Daley-like giants Ivan Brunetti and Chris Ware. I know very little about this work other than that. D+Q set-aside page here.

imageNOV151391 HIP HOP FAMILY TREE #6 $3.99
NOV150010 HELLBOY WINTER SPECIAL 2016 #1 MAIN CVR $3.99
NOV150086 ITTY BITTY HELLBOY SEARCH FOR THE WERE-JAGUAR #3 $2.99
NOV150062 ELFQUEST FINAL QUEST #13 $3.50
NOV150312 TWILIGHT CHILDREN #4 (MR) $4.99
NOV150374 TMNT ONGOING #54 $3.99
NOV150615 ISLAND #6 $7.99
NOV150499 PROPHET EARTH WAR #1 $3.99
NOV150733 OLD MAN LOGAN #1 $4.99
NOV150635 SAGA #33 (MR) $2.99
OCT150578 SOUTHERN BASTARDS #13 (MR) $3.50
An interesting week for comic-book format comics, particularly if you cast your net pretty wide. That doesn't I'm not missing something, but that there's a lot here that will satisfy one kind of audience but maybe only that kind of audience. Ed Piskor continues to see the fruits of his hard work pay off with a sixth issue of the comic book HHFT; he has grown a considerable audience and staying in front of them this way is going to pay off big time down the road in addition to the benefits he's seeing now as his star rises. The next two are Mignola-verse, all respect. Elfquest rounds into the mid-teens with its final wrap-up series; I'm happy for them to have this bow. If you're a fan of either Gilbert Hernandez or Darwyn Cooke you should pick up Twilight Children just for the fun of sussing out which flourish belongs to whom. I wouldn't pick up a TMNT comic as it's not something that interests me, but 54 issues surprised me. Island is better at issue #6 than it was at issue #1 and that's about all you can ask of an anthology. We have Island because of work by Brandon Graham and his friends on the Prophet series; this new work should wrap up the narrative they started over there. Old Man Logan is the latest entry in Marvel's ongoing not-a-revamp; Wolverine's a really effective character at the margins of books, and if there's one tried and true way to marginalize people it's to make them really old. In life as at the Xavier School, I guess. Saga and Southern Bastards are two top-line Image hit books for a lot of stores, and it's a great day when two such books are on the list, storms or not.

NOV150620 MONSTRESS #3 (MR) $3.99
NOV158341 MONSTRESS #2 2ND PTG $3.99
NOV158340 MONSTRESS #1 3RD PTG (MR) $4.99
This is another series with which I have yet to catch up, but multiple issues being re-offered is perhaps the strongest sign from the company that another hit may be developing. So this becomes one to watch. I should catch up quickly.

SEP150068 MIND MGMT HC VOL 06 THE IMMORTALS $19.99
This series has been a solid perform for Dark Horse and I have no reason to think that in some form it should become a perennial.

OCT150242 BATMAN BY ED BRUBAKER TP VOL 01 $19.99
OCT150250 BATMAN THE JIRO KUWATA BATMANGA TP VOL 03 $14.99
I don't get all of the intricacies of DC's books program, other than to know that most people tell me that at its core it is solid and reasonable, a bedrock of the company as a publisher. I don't know where this fits into other ways of collecting earlier material, particularly in Brubaker's case, but I remember the Brubaker Bat comics to be solid and the Kuwata ones attractive to inspired.

imageSEP151339 BLUBBER #2 $3.99
Solo Gilbert Hernandez anthology, just before the next Love & Rockets book comes out, featuring a bunch of similarly wild material. A must-buy.

NOV150672 LAZARUS TP VOL 4 POISON (MR) $14.99
NOV150692 SEX TP VOL 04 DAISY CHAINS (MR) $14.99
As more and more of the solid Image performers get into later-issue numbers, their serial performance seems to shift a bit to their trades -- it makes sense; if you discover a series later on you're bound to want to snap up a few books as opposed to 33 comics or whatever, it's just easier. I enjoy both of these series; they have old-fashioned values, and take contrasting approaches to world-building.

NOV151733 COMPLETE CHI SWEET HOME TP VOL 02 $24.95
SEP150056 EC ARCHIVES PANIC HC VOL 01 $49.99
Two series collection that strike me as different than ones I previously recommended, but overlapping books and which series you choose to use to get at the material is part of the fun of comics right now. I'm pretty happy with those Fanta books that split the old ECs by author, but I might look into a way to better pick the Chi material at some point.

NOV151409 OLYMPIANS GN HC VOL 08 APOLLO BRILLIANT ONE $17.99
NOV151408 OLYMPIANS GN VOL 08 APOLLO BRILLIANT ONE $9.99
There was a time 20 years ago I never would have convinced by closest friends that hardcover/softcover overlapping releases would be something that publishers did on a regular basis. These have been solid performers for First Second and a career-defining gig for George O'Connor.

OCT151217 BILL TED MOST EXCELLENT COMIC BOOK ARCHIVE HC $34.99
This all of the Evan Dorkin-directed Bill & Ted material, which has a fine reputation as both Bill & Ted material and as an Evan Dorkin comic. I know a lot of folks that were frustrated trying to assemble this material in various-publication form, so a big collection will be welcome.

SEP150065 GROO FRIENDS AND FOES TP VOL 02 $14.99
Always, always, always pick up the Sergio. If he's not the greatest living cartoonist he's at the party being held in that person's honor.

*****

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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posted 3:25 pm PST | Permalink
 

 
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