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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – January 9, 2019

Greetings comic book fans and welcome to another episode of the Crank File. If you haven’t come by the new Great Stories location yet, what are you waiting for? Get on down here and check out our awesome new home. Every Wednesday is new comic book day, a perfect day to visit a comic shop near you, 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: Murder Falcon #4

Publisher: Image
Words and art: Daniel Warren Johnsom

What it is: The reunion tour of Brooticus gets off to a rough start as Magnum Khaos unleashes his monstrous minions on Chicago. Only the mighty musical attack of Murder Falcon and the band can turn the tide… but where is Jake when his friends need him the most?

Why we love it: It only took 3 issues for Murder Flacon to rock its way to the top of the pile. This series is so freaking metal, I love it. I’ll cop to the fact that the concept of a cyborg, falcon beast that draws its power from heavy metal music to fight fights demon monsters is sophmoric. But this book is so much fun to read and it has a ton of heart. Can’t recommend this series enough.

The Mainstream One: Thor #9

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Jason Aaron
Art: Michael Del Mundo

What it is: MEET EARTH’S NEWEST DEFENDER: ROZ SOLOMON! With S.H.I.E.L.D. gone, Roz Solomon has been left adrift in a world full of homeless gods and mislaid hammers. Now this Asgardian ally is about to take on a surprising new role – and make a million new enemies. For the War of the Realms is coming…and the invasion of Earth may have already begun. Cue the Frost Giants! Rated T+

Why we like it:  Roz is a favorite minor character of mine, and I’m happy to see her getting a featured story. Originally an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. until it disbanded, Roz recently became an agent of Wakanda and she probably got her hands on some of that sweet Wakanda armor and weaponry.

The Indie One: Die #2

Publisher: Image
Words: Kieron Gillen
Art: Stephanie Hans

What it is: ‘FANTASY HEARTBREAKER,’ Part Two Remember last time, when we said ‘Goth Jumanji’? As the bleak, austere fantasy-horror ramps up, we start underlining the word ‘Goth’ in black marker until we cut a hole through the page.

Why we like it: Issue #1 was good enough to warrant a second. I was pleasantly surprised that the story was a lot more creepy and horror tinged than expected.

The #1 One: Young Justice #1

Publisher: DC
Words: Brian Bendis
Art: Patrick Gleason

What it is: Superboy! Wonder Girl! Robin! Impulse! Amethyst! They’re all united in YOUNG JUSTICE #1, the debut issue of a brand-new series that also introduces new heroes Teen Lantern and Jinny Hex! When the nightmare dimension known as Gemworld invades Metropolis, these teen heroes reunite to deal with the situation-but they’re shocked to discover the battle may be the key to the return of Conner Kent, a.k.a. Superboy! This mix of fan favorites and new legacy heroes will be the center point for some of the biggest goings-on at DC! As if that weren’t enough, Bendis reunites with all-star artist Patrick Gleason (SUPERMAN, ACTION COMICS, GREEN LANTERN CORPS) to bring the new heroes of DC’s Wonder Comics to life!

Why we like it: DC’s newest team of teen derivatives. Normally I wouldn’t care but the new #1 from the latest volume of Young Justice has a few things going for it. It is being written by the  literary wizard Brian Michael Bendis and it introduces two new characters, Jinny Hex and Teen Lantern.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Spider-Gwen Ghost Spider #4

Publisher: Marvel
Words:
Seanan MacGuire
Art:
Rosi Campi
Cover Art: Bengal

What it is: In the aftermath of SPIDER-GEDDON, Gwen Stacy has a unique ability all her own – one that will set her apart from other Spiders for years to come. But with that unique power, there will also come a unique – and grave – responsibility. One that Gwen will have no choice but to bear alone… Rated T

Why we like it: In a week where both Alex Ross and Adam Hughes have covers for Captain Marvel #1, French artist Bengal takes home the coveted Cover of the Week award with this striking scene. I just love the colors and composition on this cover and can’t wait to get it up on my wall.

 

That’s all I got this week. Until next time, carpe comics!

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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week – December 5, 2018

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: Batman #60

Publisher: DC
Words: Tom King
Art: Mikel Janin

What it is: Batman takes on a new partner, and it’s…the Penguin? After rejecting Bane’s crime-boss co-op, Cobblepot finds himself in the crosshairs of some very teed-off villains. The feathered felon turns to his old foe to snitch on Bane’s scheme, but has to prove his intentions to avoid a Bat-beatdown. Along the way, this Gotham odd couple begins to bond-could there be a new bird joining the Bat-Family? Not if Bane has anything to say about it…

Why we love it: Batman has been good, but not Top of the Pile worthy for a while now. The oddball Batman/Penguin team-up plot has been fine, but there’s a reveal on the last page of this week’s issue that is absolutely bonkers. You do not want to miss this one!

The Mainstream One: Doomsday #8 (of 12)

Publisher: DC
Words: Geoff Johns
Art: Gary Frank

What it is: The critical and commercial hit series by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank continues following the shocking revelations of last issue. As the truth behind Dr. Manhattan’s actions against the DC Universe are revealed, Ozymandias turns to the only being who can stop him: Superman.

Why we like it: The puzzle pieces are falling into place and Doomsday Clock is finally beginning to reveal how Dr. Manhattan is connected to the Superman Theory and, more importantly, to DC’s 2016 Rebirth event.

The Indie One: Die #1

Publisher: Image
Words: Kieron Gillen
Art: Stephanie Hans

What it is: THE WICKED + THE DIVINE writer KIERON GILLEN teams up with artist supernova STEPHANIE HANS (THE WICKED + THE DIVINE 1831, Journey Into Mystery) for her first ongoing comic! DIE is a pitch-black fantasy where a group of forty-something adults have to deal with the returning unearthly horror they barely survived as teenage role-players. If Kieron’s in a rush, he describes it as ‘Goth Jumanji.’ That only captures a sliver of what you’ll find in oversized debut issue-where fantasy gets all too real.

Why we like it: With two superstar creators attached to it, Die! #1 has been one of the most highly-anticipated, new Image titles releasing this year. Especially excited to see Stephanie Hans, who up to now has been mostly known for her cover artwork, providing interior art for an ongoing series.

The #1 One: Defenders Immortal Hulk #1

Publisher: Marvel
Words: Al Ewing
Art: Simone Di Meo

What it is: ‘THE BEST DEFENSE’ STARTS HERE! Stephen Strange is dead. A charred skeleton in an abandoned barn on the edge of a deserted town. Bruce Banner wants to know why. And he won’t stop until he has the truth in his hands, with or without THE IMMORTAL HULK. Rated T+

Why we like it: Immortal Hulk has been one of the most interesting character refreshes in recent memory, so I’m interested in anything Hulk at the moment. I love that Marvel is bringing back the OG Defenders team. Namor also has a Defenders #1 issue out this week, and I cannot wait for Defenders Silver Surfer #1 out next week.

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Deathstroke #38

Publisher: DC
Words:
Christopher Priest
Art:
Fernando Pasarin
Cover Art: Francisco Mattina

What it is: Deathstroke finally meets his match: Arkham Asylum?! Now an inmate, Slade Wilson must prove his sanity so he can stop an alien invasion (what?). Before he can even attempt a breakout, he’s got to face off against angry Arkham inmates out to get him. And what’s Two-Face’s role in all this mayhem? He keeps showing up in two places at once! Meanwhile, Deathstroke’s daughter, Rose Wilson, is kidnapped! Can Jericho save his sister?

Why we like it: Mattina’s dominance on cover art shows no sign of slowing. The man is an absolute beast.

 

That’s all I got this week. Until next time, carpe comics!