Monday, January 10, 2005

This Week in Comics - Shipping 01/12/05

Time for this week's selections of four-color excitement!

Written by Ed Brubaker
Art by Jason Alexander
Cover by Michael Lark

Featuring guest artist Jason Alexander (Queen and Country)! After a robbery gone wrong, Catwoman is the prime suspect in the murder of a televangelist. Josie Mac knows better, but how can she tell her partner the evidence points elsewhere?

On sale Jan 12 :: 32 pages :: $2.50 US

We get art from Greg Rucka's co-hort from Queen and Country as we wonder what will become of this title now that Lark is gone.
In the meantime we get a wonderful cover by Lark featuring one of the characters Brubaker's best known for writing.

Catwoman was one of the most innovative comics when it was relaunched a few years ago with a crime-noir style. Between it, Gotham Central and Sleeper, Brubaker has set himself up as a superior crime writer. Unfortunately, DC decided to return Catwoman to the status quo of her previous series with #25 and the pulp flair was all but gone.

It's a real treat to see Catwoman in the pages of Gotham Central. Too bad Lark couldn't do the interiors as I think he has done a great job re-interpreting DC's minions of Gotham in a way that makes them all the more real. The cover is nice, though.
There's no preview available for GOTHAM CENTRAL #27.

100 BULLETS #57
Written by Brian Azzarello
Art by Eduardo Risso
Cover by Dave Johnson

This is it: the shocking conclusion to “Wylie Runs the Voodoo Down!” With the stage set and the major players in order, it’s now time for the big showdown between Wylie, Sheppard, Dizzy and Graves. The trail of bodies has been a long one so far, but not as long as the trail of tears will be…

On sale Jan 12 :: 32 pages :: $2.50 US :: MATURE READERS

Yay! The Wylie story is ending.

Wait... Before you misunderstand me... I'm not saying it's a bad story. Really.
You see...

I haven't read any of it, yet.

Let me explain.

I read 100 Bullets in trade paperback form up until "Chill in the Oven" which was the first story that I picked up in regular form. The reason? Batman.

Oh... Another cause that needs explanation...

You see... I was quite content with reading 100 Bullets in trade and I previously had only select issues in original form (#26 and 27 -because they were my first exposure to the title and #9 -Cole's first appearance). Then one day Azzarello and Risso decide to do Batman. Good for them. Bad for 100 Bullets as it gets put into a bi-monthly schedule until their run on Batman is completed.

Now these trade paperbacks I've been reading... They reprint a whole story, usually months after it's finished. And I was content with that, like I said. However, when 100 Bullets started coming out bi-monthly, I knew that it was going to be that much longer before it's collected into book format. So I did the most logical thing: I bought the individual issues.

Only problem with that is something that any reader of 100 Bullets will tell you. It reads better in trades. So... I got into the habit of letting the issues sit until I had the full story before I read it.

Which brings us to the current issue. Seeing that it's the final part of the Wylie story, I finally get to read it. Yes, it's a strange way to go about doing things, but it has it's good points.

I get to read the whole story in one sitting and I don't have to wait longer for the paperback version.

BTW- For those who are either new to the series or just need a frequent refresher, I present to you two very good resources.
The first one, 100 B.U.L.L.E.T.S is a great fansite that includes detailed information on each of the characters as well as recent news about the series.
Then we have "Catching Up" with 100 Bullets, a fantastic primer on everything that's happened so far. WARNING: Full of spoilers if you haven't read any or all of the series.
And, of course, I guess I could mention my own recent review, also.
Preview 100 BULLETS #57 here.

Written by Mark Millar
Pencils & Cover by Bryan Hitch

"Gods & Monsters" Part 2 (of 5)
Who leaked the most terrible secret the Ultimates keep, and what does it have to do with Banner? Captain America takes matters into his own hands and confronts ex-Ultimates member Mighty Thor! Plus — a bizarre session between Bruce Banner and the most powerful telepath on Earth — Charles Xavier!

January 12 :: 32 pages :: Marvel PSR+ :: $2.99

Man, I'll be soooo glad once I get caught up on my comic orders.
I still have Ultimates 2 #1 sitting in a box at the comic shop waiting for me.

Anyway, this book easily made it into my top three books of the week.

I have yet to read the first issue, as you may have guessed, so this is all based on my thoughts of the last series as well as preview art I've seen for the current run.

Millar, while not the best of writers, does manage to balance widescreen action with down-to-earth characterization. And Hitch's art is just fantastic. If it wasn't for the way this team of creators meshed so well together I could quickly forget about Marvel's Ultimate line. It's the only thing that really interests me.

And Warren Ellis' Ultimate Trilogy looked good. Up until they had someone fill in for Trevor Hairsine on Ultimate Nightmare. That was the main reason I was picking it up.
There's no preview available for ULTIMATES 2 #2.

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