§ December 15th, 2005 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on

Wednesday at the store, I referred to Chuck Norris as “America’s #1 American,” and no one dared to argue the point.

Anyway, I missed the usual new DC Comics solicitation rundown, but that’s fine…read pal Dorian for a good overview of what DC’s up to. I am apparently balancing out Dor’s distaste for Jimmy Olsen with my overwhelming joy at a Showcase Presents the Superman Family volume, which is predominantly Jimmy, with one Lois Lane story. I’m presuming that the stories are arranged in such a fashion to maintain chronological publication order, but just one Lois story is a little annoying. Well, later volumes will have a better mix of stories, if my presumption is correct.

And in regards to the new Blue Beetle series…heed well my prediction from back in October.

As to some of the new releases:

Omega the Unknown Classic trade paperback – goodness, $29.99 for a paperback this thin? I’m assuming it’s because 1) it looks like it’s been recolored, and 2) it probably had a print run of about a dozen copies. Well, it is prime Steve Gerber, but oy, the price point.

The second issue of Local is out in stores…I reviewed #1 way back when, and haven’t had a chance to read #2 yet. Looks good, though.

Firestorm #20 – Hoo boy, I wonder how many letters they’re going to get from the anti-evolutionists.

Best of the Spirit TPB – If you’ve never read any Spirit, now’s your chance. It’s only $14.99 for a fistful of classic material. I am surprised, however, that there’s no disclaimer in the book explaining Ebony’s appearance for the uninitiated (unless Neil Gaiman covers it in his introduction, or I missed it otherwise).

X-Factor #1 – Hopefully this will go better than Peter David’s return to the Hulk, which was completely derailed by a multi-issue tie-in to an X-Men crossover. X-Factor does spin off from current goings-on in the X-books, but you really don’t need to know much more than “a whole lotta mutants lost their powers.” There, I caught you up. Now you can enjoy that rarity of rarities…a good X-comic.

Little Lulu Vol. 7 – If you aren’t already buying these, then I don’t know if there’s anything I can say to convince you to pick ’em up. It’s just plain good comic-booking. Buy four fewer Marvel reprin…er, “Special Variant Editions” and buy this instead.

I did get a chance to read Fused Tales from BOOM! Studios, since those folks were nice enough to send me a review copy. Which is a good thing, too, since I had tried out the original Fused series, but gave up on it once the art team changed one too many times, finally driving me away with some near-incomprehensible painted art. I found the initial concept interesting, though it’s one we’ve all seen a million times before in comics: guy trapped in costume/deformed body/what have you and can’t get out, now must deal with his new circumstances. The Thing, Swamp Thing, Concrete, Blue Devil, et cetera, et cetera…I’m a fan of all these characters, which probably says something about my own psychology, but had me favorably inclined to the Fused title. Which is why I’m glad I got the review copy…since I’d pretty much given up on Fused, it’s unlikely I would have even looked at Fused Tales. It’s an anthology book, with three different artists, and while the stories are mostly self-contained, there is a running subplot regarding the lead character’s ongoing evolution as a man merged with machine…in particular, the machine half’s continual degradation. The artwork is clear and easy to follow (much more so than the art that got me to drop the book in the first place), and the characterization is nicely played. I particularly like the fact that the spouse has bailed…a refreshing change from the usual heroic “I’ll stick with you through thick and thin” response we generally see in these sorts of comic-booky situations. I’m assuming that there will be a follow-up, since the book ends on a cliffhanger-y note…don’t leave me high and dry now that I’ve been pulled back in!

Oh, and that other Boom! Studios book I reviewed, Zombie Tales: Death Valley? It’s out now.

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