Thinking_Critical

#1 Issues (3:07)
Batman (3:55)
Joker/Harley (5:05)
Superman (5:52)
DC BLack Label (6:39)
Year of the Villain (8:07)
Specials (10:23)
Reprints (11:33)
Recommendations (12:28)

DC Comics November solicitations are in and I gotta be honest it doesn’t look promising from my vantage point. I’ve been saying for a while now, DC is moving towards a publishing approach much closer to Marvel and it really starts taking hold in November.

DC Comics are nearly doubling their slate of debut issues from October to November with count em 13 big #1’s. 13 new #1 issues isn’t quite Marvel territory yet but DC is quickly moving there.

DC Comics is cutting their Batman related titles back from 21 to 17 in November. 6 Batman comics have Year of the Villain tie-ins including Detective Comics, Catwoman, Nightwing, Red Hood and Batman and the Outsiders.
City of Bane continues pushing towards the end of Tom King’s run on the flagship Batman series. Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s Batman: Last Knight on Earth #3 ends their longstanding collaboration with the Dark Knight.

Joker takes a huge step-back in November after the release of Warner Bros. Joker film in October. However DC continues pushing Harley Quinn very heavily in advance of Warner Bros. Birds of Prey film. They release 4 Harley Quinn led books including 1 Year of the Villain tie-in.

DC is releasing 8 new Superman related titles including 4 Year of the Villain tie-ins and that doesn’t include Joshua Williamson’s Batman/Superman. Superman, Action Comics, Supergirl and Supergirl Annual are all related to DC’s big line-wide event.

DC Comics starts flooding Black Label with a Mississippi River’s worth of mediocrity in November with 15 comics. Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo represent the initial promise and ultimate end of Black Label with Last Knight on Earth #3. Jeff Lemire’s The Question miniseries is being published in prestige format and runs $7 for the first of 4 issues. Neil Gaiman’s Sandman Universe, Joe Hill’s Hill House..

Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman (NEW AVENGERS, INFINITY, FF) continues reshaping the X-Men’s past, present and future with breakout artist R.B. Silva (UNCANNY X-MEN)!

Powers of X #3 is the best issue of Jonathan Hickman’s X-Men so far. It has everything a comic book reader wants. Terrific art. Check. Engaging story. Check. Exciting action. Check. Excellent payoffs. Double check. I’ve been extremely impressed with Hickman’s X-Men so far but this blew my expectations away. I didn’t anticipate these level of story reveals this early in the run.

Thus far I’ve thought R.B. Silva’s art has lagged behind counterpart Pepe Larraz in House of X. But his visuals in the X1 and X2 timeframes and action scenes have been on point. This story only takes place in the X2 timeline and features plenty of action. Marte Garcia, already the unsung hero of both books, dials his color work up a notch or 2 this week.

There are so many excellent action scenes in this comic book. Unfortunately I don’t think we’ll see much plot set in the X2 timeframe moving forward but it definitely serves R.B. Silva’s art style best. Silva and color artist Marte Garcia make this issue look and feel just as important as the Hickman’s story this week.

This week’s issue features no text only graphics. The few reference materials provided are spot-on. I mentioned in my last comic book industry news video that there’s a sweet spot for utilizing these kinds of story aids. And this is certainly it.

Now let’s get into some story details. House of X and Powers of X feature excellent character moments each and every week. But Hickman raises the bar this issue. Normally something this big in scope always has plot holes that feel off or confusing. I honestly can’t find any holes in what’s a pretty complex plot Hickman’s executing in this comic. Jonathan Hickman crafts a faultless narrative in Powers of X #3.

Jonathan Hickman’s Powers of X #3 delivers everything I could ever want in a comic book and then some. I..

“City of Bane” continues! The last of the independent villains are on the run, leaving Gotham City entirely to Bane and his cronies—including Flashpoint Batman and Gotham Girl! Though this means a semblance of peace on the streets, the iron grip of tyranny is squeezing all life out of Gotham. And with Bane’s machinations keeping other heroes out, the city really needs the Batman to return. Is Bruce Wayne ready to face his toughest foes yet…his father and the man who broke his back?

This week Bane kills Alfred in Batman #77. This should have been expected. Alfred was being held prisoner by Flashpoint Batman on Bane’s behalf and it’s explicitly stated that if Batman or any of his family enter Gotham Alfred would be executed. Damian Wayne enters Gotham to confront Thomas Wayne this issue. This death isn’t surprising in the least. What is surprising it how it made me feel.

I honestly didn’t care much. It doesn’t feel important. And much of that is on Tom King and DC Comics for including it in the end of a year plus of porous Batman stories. Honestly if Alfred needs to die to get Tom King off Batman even faster than issue 85 it’s a sacrifice worth making in my opinion. Of course that’s not going to happen but Batman has been a series of incoherent, terribly executed stories highlighted by amateur dialogue and pretentious writing tropes for far too long. There’s nothing King or anyone at DC Comics can do to change that now. Killing Alfred, Bruce Wayne’s moral compass, father figure and the second most important character in Batman lore after Batman himself, adds no weight to King’s ‘City of Bane’ story or his entire Batman run period.

The art in Batman continues to be exceptional. I was a bit nervous seeing Mikel Janin as a credited artist next Tony Daniels this issue but it works fine. Tony Daniels work on Batman continues to impress during his recent issues on the series. The man knows how to frame and execute stories perfectly. There is a tremendous amount of dyna..

Jonathan Hickman's "Dawn of X" story arc is doing no less than reinventing the entire X-Men mythos for the modern era, and the Marvel fandom has certainly stood and taken notice. The alternating events of both House of X and Powers of X have thrown readers for a wide loop, with some mind-boggling sci-fi concepts, but Jinathon Hickman's House of X and Powers of X books are also distinguishing themselves for including graphic designer Tom Muller's dense sections of charts and text files that accompany the story.

So why do House of X and Powers of X, with so many fantastical sci-fi concepts, need a science textbook's worth of supporting data? EW sat down with Jonathan Hickman to talk about that very subject.

Grant Morrison is launching a new Blackstars limited series for DC out of his current The Green Lantern run. Working with Wonder Woman artist Xermanico, the three-issue Green Lantern: Blackstars will replace Morrison and Liam Sharp's The Green Lantern, which is now confirmed to be ending with October's #12.

DC somewhat spoils the ending of The Green Lantern #12 in setting up Blackstars saying that as a result of that issue "no Green Lanterns can be found patrolling their space sectors...not a single power ring lights the darkness!

Aritist Liam Sharp revealed the plans Wednesday in the wake of the Green Lantern: Blackstars announcement - a three-issue series starting in November. "All three covers link up into one sprawling piece, and I’ll be back for at least ten more issues with Grant toon [sic], but this mini-series will rock! It was the plan all along..." Sharp tweeted.

The Internet was not prepared for a Spider-Man series helmed by J.J. Abrams earlier this year, and fans reacted accordingly to the news. Now, details are slowly coming out about the story and Spider-Man's newest foe in the series, Cadaverous. A new trailer for the mini-series debuted today and the world got its first look at this creepy new villain.

The release of DC's November 2019 solic..

From the award-winning team of writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Alex Maleev, it's DC's biggest whodunit in years! The world's greatest detectives-Batman, Green Arrow, Lois Lane, Plastic Man, the Question and Martian Manhunter-have gathered to solve the mystery behind the true identity of Leviathan's leaders and the destruction of the world's top intelligence agencies! Red Hood is their leading suspect-and he is on the loose! Plus, the Silencer takes her shot! This mystery will unleash a new evil on the DC Universe!

Brian Michael Bendis’ first big event book at DC Comics, Event Leviathan, is off to an ominous start. Thus far few happenings, if any, presented in the first 2 issues weren’t included in the lead up in Action Comics, Superman: Leviathan Rising special or Year of the Villain special. Bendis’ long history of difficulties with pacing, generic dialogue and ignoring continuity are very evident once again in this story.

Event Leviathan’s cast of street level characters including Batman, Mahunter, the Question and Green Arrow are supposed to highlight his strengths as a writer. At this point that just isn’t the case. Alex Maleev’s art has been a saving grace of sorts for the book. The art hasn’t been great but it hasn’t been terrible either. He drop ball significantly this week.

What makes Alex Maleev’s performance in this comic book so, so bad? The first two issues featured little action of note. I predicted his highly stylized, muddy illustrations aren’t the right approach to a superhero story. I was right. The comic features a double-page 18-panel action sequence that is the most incomprehensible series of graphics I’ve encountered in a very long time. There’s no sense of continuity in what’s supposed to be a showcase action set. And this continues on during the rest of the action scenes in the book. The jumps are extremely jarring and worst of all downright confusing.

Alex Maleev’s art takes a huge step back this week due to all the action. His..

As Xavier sows the seeds of the past, the X-Men's future blossoms into trouble for all mutantdom. Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman continues reshaping the X-Men's past, present and future with breakout artist R.B. Silva!

Powers of X #2 is a great issue and the easiest to read of the four so far. The debut issues of House of X and Powers of X laid a tremendous foundation. House of X #2 was a game changer that redefined everything we thought we knew about X-Men continuity. Powers of X #2 begins fleshing out Hickman’s new X-Men status quo with some absolutely phenomenal characterization.

R.B. Silva’s visuals this week take a noticeable step forward but I still think they’re lagging behind Pepe Larraz’s House of X. He continues using anime inspired facial expressions, especially with Charles Xavier, that don’t fit the tone of the rest of the book. The one aspect R.B. Silva excelled at in the first issue were the action sequences. Unfortunately, there’s only 1 panel that contains action the entire issue.

Marte Garcia’s color art continues to impress. The color work in the scenes during the X1 story arc are especially brilliant. But Garcia’s far beyond solid the entire issue. R.B. Silva’s art is solid this week despite no action scenes to highlight his strengths.

Jonathan Hickman opens Powers of X #2 with an excellent interaction between Charles Xavier and Moira MacTaggert and Magneto. There’s a tremendous amount of tension between the two factions. Charles sells Erik on a long-term, ambitious plan to save mutants. Magneto agrees but provides an ominous warning. “I won’t acquiesce to sympathy or doubt. I won’t give an inch. I will check you at every moment.” Just beautiful dialogue from Hickman.

Jonathan Hickman begins fleshing out his new X-Men vision in earnest in Powers of X #2. He’s beginning to tie together a lot of the previous story and some things that felt off now make total sense.

Powers of X #2 is a huge jump forward from its predecessor and much more..

Marvel Comics is in a great position to dominate the market through October. Marvel is led by the best-selling ongoing series in the industry Amazing Spider-Man and Immortal Hulk. Donny Cates Absolute Carnage event is going full throttle through October. But there is no doubt October 2019 is special because it’s truly the Dawn of X.

Jonathan Hickman’s final issues of House of X and Powers of X release early in the month. So far Hickman’s X-Men reboot has the entire comic book industry buzzing over his new spin on the franchise. The revelation that Moira MacTaggert is a mutant with the power of reincarnation has opened a world of possibilities moving forward. October should see Jonathn Hickman’s direction clearly in focus as the first 3 of 6 new X-Men ongoing titles begin releasing.

Hickman’s X-Men, Gerry Duggan’s Marauders and Tini Howard’s Excalibur debut with 40-page/$5 issues. Excalibur features Betsy Braddock as newly minted Captain Brittain alongside Rogue, Gambit, Rictor, Jubilee and Apocalypse. Duggan’s Marauders has the weakest premise of the 6 new X-titles in my opinion. The main event is most definitely Jonathan Hickman’s flagship X-Men series. I’ll be shocked if X-Men isn’t the best-selling ongoing series in the industry for an extended period starting with issue 1.

Marvel Comics continues leaning on Spider-Man in October. Marvel’s vast array Spider-Men front 13 new comics. Amazing Spider-Man emerged as the highest selling on-going title in the industry as DC Comics Batman continues shedding readers. Amazing Spider-Man #31 is an Absolute Carnage tie-in. It appears Marvel may have another certified hit on its hands with Black Cat. The drop from issue 1 to 2 isn’t nearly as drastic as usual. We should have a better feel for its staying power when Marvel drops issue 5.

October features Marvel Comics event books Absolute Carnage and Contagion. Donny Cates Absolute Carnage #3 releases alongside 5 associated miniseries and tie-in issues to Venom and Amaz..

Kelly Sue DeConnick on Captain Marvel, Bitch Planet and More (Behind the Panel) | SYFY WIRE - https://youtu.be/sIdgTGAaBB8

Despite an extra week in July 2019 compared to July 2018, comics and graphic novel sales to comic stores were up only 6.91%, according to information released by Diamond Comic Distributors. And with 31 weeks through the end of July 2019 vs. 30 weeks through the end of July 2018 (or 3% more weeks), sales were up 0.63% year-to-date.

Comic sales were up 4.99% over July 2018, and graphic novel sales were up 12.83%, a reversal of recent trends which have comics out-performing graphic novels. Year-to-date, comic sales are now up 0.97%, while graphic novel sales are down 0.25%.

Part of the reason for comics’ lackluster year-over-year performance may have been the comp month; July 2018 was an exceptionally strong month, with comic sales up 17.37% over sales in July 2017. Conversely, graphic novel sales in July 2018 were very weak, down 9.11% vs. the previous year.

In market share, Marvel Comics maintained its double-digit lead over DC Comics; other Top 10 publishers’ shares were also fairly typical except for Dynamite Entertainment, which leaped ahead of BOOM! Studios to the #6 slot.

The start of Jonathan Hickman's reinvention Marvel X-Men franchise helped comic book sales in July post positive gains over the same month last year, and now Direct Market sales for 2019 are just a fraction over 2018's total through July.
According to figures released by Diamond Comic Distributors Friday morning, Hickman's House of X #1 and Powers of X #1 were the two best-selling comic book titles of July, followed by Amazing Spider-Man #25, three of five Marvel titles in the Top 10 in terms of units shipped.

Robert Kirkman's The Walking Dead #193, the surprise final issue of the long-running Image Comics series, ranked #4 in units.
DC had the remaining four titles in the units Top Ten, all Batman titles, including Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo's Batman: The Las..

Marvel Comics' revival of the X-Men franchise under the direction of scribe Jonathan Hickman has earned many fans for its drastic changes to the popular squad of mutants. Last week's release of House of X #2 introduced a major retcon to the character of Moira MacTaggart that reframes much of her impact on the X-Men canon, revealing she's a mutant with the power of reincarnation.

However, novelist Catherine Webb has made it clear that she's uncomfortable with aspects of her novel The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August possibly being plagiarized by the new X-Men writer. Catherine Webb, who published the novel under the pen name Claire North, pointed out the similarities to Moira-centric House of X #2. Prompting many of her fans to accuse Jonathan Hickman of plagiarizing Webb's work. It should be noted that Catherine Webb has since supported the work.

Much like in House of X #2, the title character in The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August lives his life and then is reincarnated, attaining all of the memories and knowledge he's gained in his previous experiences. And after Jonathan Hickman's comments about praising the book, this seems like a smoking gun.

Artist Greg Capullo announced on Saturday that he has signed a new contract with DC. Along with the news comes word that Greggg Capullo will join his frequent Batman collaborator, writer Scott Snyder, on a secret project that he calls "biggest adventure yet!"

Gregg Capullo and Scott Snyder's partnership took shape along with the New 52, as the pair helmed DC's relaunched Batman series. The two creators worked together on the series for five years, crafting a number of critically and fan-acclaimed stories, reinventing classic characters for DC's then-new continuity, and introducing all-new friends and foes for the Dark Knight.

DC is asking retailers to destroy all copies of August 14's Superman #14 and Supergirl #33, with replacement copies coming at a later date.

"Due to advance production schedules, the cov..

Comics by Perch DC WarnerMedia Video - https://youtu.be/CzfPqZSKA-U

There’s a recent article titled “Where Does DC Comics Fit in AT&T’s Vision for WarnerMedia?” from Forbes Hollywood and entertainment writer Rob Salkowitz making the rounds on social media. I saw a ton of wild speculation foretelling doom and gloom for DC Comics based on the report. I wanted to put out my thoughts after reviewing the article and a doing bit of general research. For those unaware ATT&T acquired DC Comics parent company Time Warner in June 2018 for a hefty $85B price tag. And just like that Distribution giant ATT&T was flush with heavyweight content and creative entities like Warner Bros, HBO and Turner. This has left some, like Rob Salkowitz, speculating what place, if any, DC Comics has within ATT&T and WarnerMedia.

Rob Salkowitz, a recognized expert in digital media and the global digital generation, regularly writes about comic books and comic related movies for Forbes. So he certainly has credibility in the industry. His bio describes him as “a business analyst and futurist specializing in the disruptive effects of digital technology and the digital generation on work, business and culture.” He’s best known in comic circles for writing “Comic-Con and the Business of Pop Culture: What the World's Wildest Trade Show Can Tell Us About the Future of Entertainment”. The late Stan Lee is quoted saying “Even I learned new stuff. If you're a comic book nut like me, miss it at your own risk” about the book. So the contents clearly have merit.

But it’s not 100% faultless. One of the big conclusions the book discussed back in 2012 was “the rise of digital comics distribution as a significant market force.” Currently digital comics aren’t nearly the comic book market game many forecasted. Digital comic sales boomed from 2012 until 2014 when they flat lined and have maintained steady between $90 and $100 million annually. All the while comic industry sales have grown $300 million total..

Tom King and Tony Daniel's "City of Bane" continues! Bane has taken over Gotham City, and Batman is nowhere to be found. At least, not a Batman anyone recognizes. Flashpoint Batman is now patrolling the city, dispensing a violent brand of justice and taking out rogue villains who haven't yet signed on with Bane. It's all building to a rebellion among the bad guys who don't want to play along- and distrust in those who do! Meanwhile, a surprising ally has come to Bruce Wayne's aid, nursing him back to health so that he can get back to his city.

But Batman #76 is such a trash book. It’s obvious King and the editorial staff time to ensure they’re providing quality stories. Is this issue as bad as Batman #68? Hell no. That’s one of the worst comics I’ve ever read in my life. But this isn’t much better. Batman #76 features virtually no story progression for the much hyped “City of Bane” arc. You know that big story King guaranteed would wipe away all the ill will towards him and DC Comics following “The Wedding”. The second chapter in “City of Bane” is complete filler. Basically just a recap of everything we already know that was never explained.

The art in this book is absolutely fantastic. It’s such a waste of Tony Daniel’s abilities but that’s so common at DC Comics nowadays it’s hardly noteworthy. What is noteworthy is the absolute dismantling of Captain Atom’s reputation and legacy at the hands of Tom King this week. I’m not the biggest Captain Atom mark in the world but the character was created in the 60’s by Joe Gill and Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko.

The only thing else that happens of note is the complete annihilation Captain Atom at the hands of Gotham Girl. But we already knew heroes weren’t allowed to enter Gotham. So that was kinda pointless. So who deserves blame for this compete waste of time, trees and octopi?

I don’t fully blame Tom King for the issues in Batman #76. I fully absolve artist Tony Daniel from any culpability. I’m certain he had n..

Powers of X #1 Reiview - https://youtu.be/fD7WjkaN5i0

Learn the truth about one of the X-Men's closest allies...and then begin the fight for the future of mutantkind! Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman continues reshaping the X-Men's world with Marvel Young Gun artist Pepe Larraz!

X-Men continuity is currently a convoluted mess. It’s clear from Jonathan Hickman’s interviews before the launch of House of X and Powers of X that cleaning this up is a huge priority for the companion series. So the first round of Hickman X-Men comics honestly made things even more complex, if anything else. Have no fear. Hickman starts clearing up a lot of the mess that is X-Men continuity in this week’s House of X comic. He basically redefines the entire X-Men timeline in issue 2.

Spaniard Pepe Larraz is one of six artists featured in the 2018 class of Marvel Young Guns. Another member, Marco Checchetto, has already broken out as one of the premiere artists in the industry. Marvel clearly has high hopes for Larraz moving forward. His style is reminiscent of Stuart Immomen. Pepe Larraz’s art in House of X continues to outshine counterpart R.B. Silva’s Powers of X. He has a good feel for character composition and paneling.

Pepe Larraz provides a great amount of detail work in House of X. Color artist Marte Garcia provides a great sense of visual cohesiveness between the two books. His work with shadowing stands out specifically in this issue. It creates a brooding undertone that accentuates a pretty dark narrative throughout. All-in-all Pepe Larraz and Marte Garcia do a great job illustrating House of X #2

It’s time to get into what Jonathan Hickman does that makes this comic book a truly unique game changer. Not just for X-Men but likely the entire Marvel Universe. Moira MacTaggert is a mutant with the ability of reincarnation. Every time she is reborn she relives her life with the full knowledge of her previous lives. Every time she takes a divergent path from her first life the..

After turning Venom's world upside down a year ago, DONNY CATES and RYAN STEGMAN are about to put the Sinister Symbiote through hell again, only this time CARNAGE has come calling, and everyone who's ever worn a symbiote is dead in his sights! He's skirted the periphery of the Marvel Universe for months, but Cletus Kasady at last stands poised to make his grand return to New York in a blistering 60-PAGE story... and he wants to paint the town red!

I’ve been on the Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman bandwagon since Venom #1 released. The art in the series has been some of the sickest in the industry and the stories are tight and exciting. Cates has been building to the Absolute Carnage event in the pages of Venom as well as the Web of Venom series of one-shot stories for well over a year.

Ryan Stegman’s artwork on Venom is some of the very best in the comic industry. He takes things up a notch or 2 in Absolute Carnage. His line work and layouts are impeccable throughout every single page. Ryan Stegman has a fantastic talent for moving the reader’s eyes with the story and keeps you engaged in every panel. He even provides a jump scare at one point, which I honestly didn’t think was possible. Ryan Stegman’s work is phenomenal but his counterparts add a ton of their own flavor as well. JP Mayers’ inks and Frank Martin’s colors are extremely impressive on a collection horrifying facial expressions. They set an extremely dark tone that fits the horror setting and story.

Ryan Stegman, JP Mayers and Frank Martin do a flawless job executing Donny Cates horrifying vision for Absolute Carnage. The issue starts great and still manages to crescendo during the final act of the story. Stegman’s visuals in Venom are exceptional, he takes it to another level here.

Donny Cates does a great job laying out the current state of events and stakes moving forward. Symbiote God Knull is currently contained in a deep slumber on a distant planet of symbiotes. Venom and his offspring have bee..

Spider-Man is going to have a brush with death in an upcoming issue of Marvel Comics Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man. Marvel Comics sent solicitation information about issues #11 and #12 of the Tom Taylor-written Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man series to publishers, revealing Spidey will be found dead in Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #12. “Spider-Man day has been and gone,” Taylor tweeted when the news broke on Friday. “So, now's a good time to mention Spidey dies in our Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #12. Sorry!”

Rob Liefeld has created a lot of characters and concepts during his decades in comics, but perhaps the one most fully Rob Liefeld is Youngblood, the superteam that he created when he went to Image Comics and has returned to consistently for more than 20 years. At the moment, though, Rob Liefeld told fans on social media that he currently doesnt "have any interaction with them for the first time in over 22 years." In a Facebook post titled "Where's Youngblood?" Liefeld revealed that after two failed attempts to bring Youngblood to the screen, he finds himself unable to use the property, and with other-media prospects dim since producers are loathe to take on the property without his participation.

This month marks the release of Todd McFarlane's Spawn #300, which brings the bestselling Todd McFarlane title one issue away from becoming the single longest-running creator-owned comic book series in North America.

Ahead of Spawn #300's release, Image unveiled Jerome Opeña's variant cover for the milestone issue. It features a wave of different Hellspawn, those throughout history who have sold their soul to Hell in the name of vengeance, charging into battle. Among those seen on the variant are the fearsome Omega Spawn and Gunslinger Spawn from the Wild West.

In the weeks leading up to the release of the landmark Spawn #300 issue, Image has previously released several covers illustrated by Spawn creator Todd McFarlane and Greg Capullo. An additional..

FEAR THE FUTURE! Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman (INFINTY, NEW AVENGERS, FF) continues his revolutionary new direction for the X-Men. Intertwining with HOUSE OF X, POWERS OF X reveals the secret past, present and future of mutantkind, changing the way you look at every X-Men story before and after. You do not want to miss the next seminal moment in the history of the X-Men!

Hickman introduces many new mysteries in House of X while paying respect to several past X-Men creators and events. Marvel Comics promises Powers of X “reveals the secret past, present and future of mutantkind, changing the way you look at every X-Men story before and after.” Certainly a bold claim and difficult task given the often times convoluted nature of 50+ years of X-Men preceding it.

Powers of X #1 is the first of a six-issue companion miniseries to House of X leading into Dawn of X. Powers of X is written by Jonathan Hickman and illustrated by R.B. Silva. Will Powers of X continue the momentum of the extremely well received smash-hit House of X? Does Kickman’s leadership of the X-Men franchise indicate greater days ahead?

The artwork, especially at the beginning and end of the issue, takes a noticeable step back from House of X’s Pepe Larraz. The opening scene between Charles Xavier and an old acquaintance feels separate from the rest of the book. At one point Professor X doesn’t appear to have eyeballs. And some of the facial expressions are Manga or anime inspired. The rest of the issue doesn’t feature these at all. It gives it a bit of a disjointed feel overall.

The art gets noticeable better in the second and third time frames before falling off a bit towards the final pages. R.B. Silva lays out the panels very well and the scenes are easy to follow visually. Silva does nail the action for the most part and that’s a good thing. Powers of X has a lot more of it than its counterpart.

Jonathan Hickman some really good stuff in Powers of X #1. Heck even a few great answers t..

VALIANT FIRST begins in force this May with an all-new vision of the future in RAI #1 - a new monthly series from comics superstars Matt Kindt and Clayton Crain! The year is 4001 A.D. - led by the artificial intelligence called "Father," the island nation of Japan has expanded out of the Pacific and into geosynchronous orbit with the ravaged Earth below. With billions to feed and protect, it has fallen to one solitary guardian to enforce the law of Father's empire - the mysterious folk hero known as Rai. They say he can appear out of nowhere. They say he is a spirit...the ghost of Japan. But when the first murder in a thousand years threatens to topple Father's benevolent reign, Rai will be forced to confront the true face of a nation transformed...and his own long-lost humanity...

Matt Kindt is the most underrated writer in the entire industry. He’s a paragon of writing excellence in an industry dying for quality stories. Clayton Crain’s unique unparalleled digital graphic abilities make him a visionary in the entire comic book industry.

The opening page of the book is mind-blowing. Every subsequent page looks just as amazing. Clayton Crain’s introduction to New Japan is a fascinating look at a future society living on a super city orbiting earth. The sheer scope of Clayton Crain’s creation is an astonishing achievement. You won’t find a wholly new setting visually realized this perfectly in any other medium.

I describe Matt Kindt's Rai as a combination of The Matrix and 1984. The setting of New Japan is seemingly a utopia created and managed by the mysterious “Father”. The residents, who escaped a dying Earth for refuge on New Japan, are cared for and watched by Father. The outwardly serene existence is thrown off kilter when the first murder in a thousand years occurs.

Matt Kindt’s New Japan residents receive positronic companions when they come of age to keep them from feeling lonely and discourage camaraderie with other people. Positronic’s are basically ..

"QUEST FOR THE BLUE LANTERNS" part three! Guy Gardner sets out on a one-man mission to take out the one Sinestro Corps ring slinger everyone's afraid of: Arkillo! Can this Green Lantern with a grudge take down this monstrous alien and prove he's still the toughest guy in the cosmos to carry a power battery? As Guy's hope for a fair fight wanes, Hal Jordan and Kyle Rayner streak across the galaxy in a last-ditch effort to find Saint Walker of the Blue Lanterns and ensure that the blue light of hope isn't extinguished.

Robert Venditti was blessed to have two outstanding primary artists on his bi-monthy Hal Jordan series. Ethan Van Sciver is the greatest Green Lantern artist of all-times. Meaning people often overlook what a fantastic Green Lantern artist counterpart Rafael Sandoval is in his own right. Rebirth era Superman and Batman are elevated greatly by amazing art teams but neither touch Ethan Van Sciver and Sandoval’s collective brilliance.

Rafael Sandoval illustrates issue 16. His work doesn’t feature the gnarly details and facials of Ethan Van Sciver but he excels greatly at creating dynamic action. And this issue, while being a very contained story, is full of action. As in it’s almost entirely a one-on-one fight between Guy Gardner and his Sinestro Corps counterpart Arkillo.

Prior to this issue the Lanterns and Sinestro Corps worked together following the defeat of Thaal Sinestro at the hands of Hal Jordan. Gardner and Arkillo made for an effective partnership. Cut from the same cloth, they were an unstoppable team. When relations between the Lanterns and Sinestro Corps fell apart it was time for the two to square off and finally prove who the toughest of the tough is.

But nothing prepared readers for what happens next. What on the surface is one giant fight scene is actually a very meaningful character driven story. While the two battle tooth and nail Robert Venditti flashes back to Gardner’s youth. Readers learn the Lanterns resident alpha-male grew..

A very special issue of SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN written AND drawn by CHIP ZDARSKY! When filmmakers set out to document Spider-Man's impact on New York City, they couldn't have predicted what was going to happen to them next.

Chip Zdarsky’s Perter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #310 is the finale of his 20 issue run on the series. It’s basically Zdarsky’s love letter to Marvel Comics flagship character. Chip Zdarsky pencils, inks, colors and scripts the entire issue. It’s extremely heartfelt. If a comic book can make you cry this one is likely to do it.

Zdarsky’s art in the issue is subtle, humble and perfectly suits the Spider-Man character and story. Spidey has a classic look and is framed perfectly the entire issue. Seriously there isn’t one panel or image that feels out of place or off the entire book. It’s a shame Zdarsky didn’t illustrate his entire run. His deep admiration and love for Spider-Man shines through ever perfectly illustrated page. Zdarsky’s color work and use of shadow are flawless. He placed his heart and soul into illustrating this book and it reverberates in every single page.

Chip Zdarsky interweaves documentary style interviews during Spectacular Spider-Man #310's narration. It’s an extremely effective technique that makes the story hit even harder. There are cameos from a few supporting characters, Captain America and even Peter Parker himself. All explaining who Spider-Man is to them. Every interviewee has a different answer but they all accentuate the core of the hero. He’s a selfless man who is synonymous with the fabric of New York City and makes it a better place for everyone.

The story features no supervillains or elaborately planned crimes for Spider-Man to stop. It tells a simple tale of your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man patrolling the streets. Some stories and events are so powerful readers can feel more connected to them without words. The themes and experiences in the story are universal and are understood by everyo..

DC Comics has released solicitation information and images for new comics and products shipping in October 2019.

DC Comics is releasing a total of 20 Batman led and related comic books in October not counting those led by Joker, Harley or vintage reprints. Besides Batman, Detective Comics and Batman and the Outsiders the Dark Knight has offerings from illustrious creators like Warren Ellis, Bryan Hitch, Brian Michael Bendis, Kurt Busiek, Neal Adams and Scott Snyder. Batman and Detective Comics ae illustrated by John Romita Jr., Klaus Janson and Doug Mahnke.

Sean Gordon Murphy’s second foray into his Murphyverse continues with Batman: Curse of the White Knight #4. James Tynion IV and Freddie Williams II final entry in the Batman TMNT trilogy completes with issues #6. Dan Jurgens’ Nightwing still features Ric Grayson.

Readers of all things Batman have a full plate the month of October. Plenty of industry legends provide new content outside the pages of DC’s ongoing Batman related titles. Fans of The Dark Knight and related characters also have three annual issues to look forward to in October 2019.

DC Comics most dysfunctional couple headline seven comic books in October. Harley Quinn gets the most love headlining four titles to Jokers two while they share top billing on another. Brian Azzarello’s new Birds of Prey series debuts with Harley front and center. Quinn is also featured in team-up miniseries Harley and Poison Ivy from Jody Houser. Hollywood legend John Carpenter scribes Joker: Year of the Villain #1 which has the potential to be a lot of fun.

Joker and Harley are featured in three DC Black Label books. Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity from YA author Kami Garcia is $6 a pop for the 9 issue miniseries. Stjepan Sejic’s Harleen is releasing in the original Black Label format, 3 64-page issues at a steep $8 cover price. Leff Lemire’s Joker: Killer Smile debuts in October. DC is charging $6 for a mere 32 pages of content.

Superman and friends have been on li..

The Joker returns to Gotham City in Detective Comics #1008! The Joker is through working with the Legion of Doom, and he wants to get back to his roots: giving Batman absolute hell! The Clown Prince of Crime comes back with a bang-and he's not about to take prisoners! As if that weren't enough, Lex Luthor delivers the cure for Mr. Freeze's beloved wife, Nora, freeing her from cryo-stasis at last! But something else is very, very wrong with Nora...

Doug Mahnke's art is really fun to look at. Doug Mahnke’s Joker is unbalanced and interacts with the cast and scenery much of the book. The lively and happy carnival setting is the perfect way to accentuate what a homicidal maniac Joker is. The backdrop allows Doug Mahnke and his art team to fill it full of fantastic details. The color work by Dave Baron shines throughout. He keeps everything bright and playful without oversaturating the images. A growing industry trend as digital becomes the standard.

Peter Tomasi's Detective Comics #1008 has an old school feel this week. Joker sends Batman an invitation to the carnival he’s taken hostage. All the customers and performers, including the man-beast Joker feeds, are outfitted with custom neckties. The Clown Prince of Crime has fun playing carnie games waiting for Batman’s arrival.

The Dark Knight arrives on the scene and pierces Joker with his batarang at the ready. Jokes isn’t much bothered by this and appears happy to see his long-time nemesis. He even refers to him as his best buddy. Knowing Batman’s options are limited as long as the hostages are still in danger. Gotham City’s finest talks a bit of smack and actually knocks one of Joker’s teeth out but ultimately knows his hands are tied until he can identify a way to save the people.

Detective Comics #1008 is a fun, extremely enjoyable Batman Comic. Detective Comics #1008 harkens back to days before comics were written for the trades and readers could expect a fulfilling experience in a single comic book issue...

In May 2016, Geoff Johns and DC Comics launched DC Rebirth. Wally West’s return was a symbol of hope and new beginning following the failed New 52 initiative championed by Dan DiDio. The New 52 led a wide-spread reader exodus from the DC Comics.

Geoff Johns and DC Comics Rebirth rejected the dissolution of the New 52. The relaunch was an enormous success. Customers returned to DC’s hope-filled universe of virtuous heroes. DC Rebirth featured brilliant series and characters led by the best creators in the industry. DC Comics identified their issue, addressed it and brought readers back.

DC Comics President and Chief Creative Officer (CCO) Geoff Johns stepped down from his positions. Accepting a new writer-producer deal with DC Comics and Warner Bros. DC Comics Co-Publisher’s Dan Didio and Jim Lee and EIC Bob Harras filled the leadership vacuum. Near the end of DC Comics smash-hit event Dark Knights: Metal in March 2018 the Rebirth label was removed form DC titles altogether.

Co-Publishers Dan DiDio and Jim Lee and EIC Bob Harras. Dan DiDio also holds the title of President and believes heroes can’t have happy lives. Jim Lee, who assumed the CCO title vacated by Johns, is a beloved industry figure who seems above reproach from many readers. Bob Harras is a longtime industry executive who has a distaste for Mark Waid.

Brian Michael Bendis’ time at DC Comics is a complete disaster. His terrible sales on Superman and Action Comics are the least of DC Comics issues. He’s a major player in internal DC Comics politics. Since his arrival his sphere of influence has grown exponentially. Bendis sold Dan DiDio on the idea he could bring Marvel Comics success with him. He’s actually importing the internal culture rot plaguing Marvel Comics.

DC leadership anointed Brian Michael Bendis and Tom King the most important creators at the comic book publisher. Tom King and Bendis are the primary weapons of mass character destruction and chief architects of DC Comics dark, hopeles..

Featuring action-packed extras including a Cover Gallery, Script, Inked And Color Pages and more! FACE THE FUTURE. Superstar writer Jonathan Hickman (SECRET WARS, AVENGERS, FANTASTIC FOUR) takes the reins of the X-Men universe! Since the release of Uncanny X-Men #1, there have been four seminal moments in the history of the X-Men. Giant-Sized X-Men. X-Men. Age of Apocalypse. New X-Men. Four iconic series that introduced a new era for Marvel’s mutants and revolutionized the X-Men. In House of X, Charles Xavier reveals his master plan for mutantkind…one that will bring mutants out of the shadow of mankind and into the light once more.

This is easily the best illustrated X-Men book in years. The opening pages featuring mutants being born from a tree immediately raise expectations for X-Men moving forward. Pepe Larraz has very smooth line art and a great sense of when to fill scenes with detail. Pepe Larraz is very effective at setting tone with body language.

Color artist Marte Garcia’s work can’t go unmentioned. He breathes life into Pepe Larraz’s dazzling illustrations. Together they form a dynamic artistic team. If the art in House of X #1 is any indication Marvel Comics and Jonathan Hickman are very serious about rejuvenating the X-Men franchise. Pepe Larraz and Marte Garcia flesh out Hickman’s vision with fantastic body language, set details and breathtaking visuals.

Jonathan Hickman does superb work reestablishing many of the key players and the lays the foundation for the new status quo in the X-Men universe. Magneto and Cyclops are presented as enormously powerful and even menacing. In fact, I would go as far to say it’s not completely clear if Charles Xavier and his mutants are the good guys here.

Jonathan Hickman’s greatest strength as a creator is long form storytelling. I get the feeling he’s mapped out the first few years of his X-Men arc. Which is a great change for the franchise. This is the beginning of a very ambitious story from Jonathan Hick..

In this explosive sequel to the critically acclaimed blockbuster BATMAN: WHITE KNIGHT from writer/artist Sean Murphy, The Joker recruits Azrael to help him expose a shocking secret from the Wayne family's legacy-and to run Gotham City into the ground! As Batman rushes to protect the city and his loved ones from danger, the mystery of his ancestry unravels, dealing a devastating blow to the Dark Knight. Exciting new villains and unexpected allies will clash in this unforgettable chapter of the White Knight saga-and the truth about the blood they shed will shake Gotham to its core!

Sean Murphy is the writer/artist in the book. Batman: Curse of the White Knight is visually stunning. Murphy’s line art features his trademark sketchy effects. Sean Murphy has an amazing gift for emoting character faces. Sean Murphy’s character designs continue to shine. His Batman has a familiar but very distinct look and feel, most notably his enormous chin. He looks like he can take a massive punch.

Color artist Matt Hollingsworth continues his stellar work on The White Knight series. The muted color pallet of Matt Hollingsworth perfectly illuminates Murphy’s harsh, gritty Gotham setting. This book has a look and feel totally unique to Sean Murphy and Matt Hollingsworth. White Knight set the bar for future Murphyverse books at a tremendously high level. Curse of the White Knight Book One manages to exceed it.

Sean Murphy does a great job clarifying the aftermath of previous events and reframing character motivations. I have a few small critiques regarding character actions following Napier reverting back to Joker. Sean Murphy does a great job laying the foundation for another amazing story in the Murphyverse. There’s not really room for any action yet and the issue is exposition heavy. Despite that it doesn’t come off as overwhelming and reads at an extremely brisk pace.

Curse of the White Knight feels like the beginning of another excellent Batman story. Sean Gordan Murphy brings..

Marvel shared a teaser image featuring cosmic bad boy Annihilus. The teaser artwork, drawn by Venom: Space Knight alum Ariel Olivetti, shows Annihilus perched on a space rock as ominous text reads "Annihilation was only the beginning..."
The teaser was also shown to retailers at San Diego Comic-Con, though any further details were not available. All we know is whatever the project will end up hitting shelves in November. There's been some speculation that rising Marvel star Donny Cates could be involved in the project.

Donny Cates is the architect of the Marvel cosmic tales of late, penning Guardians of the Galaxy and Silver Surfer: Black. Donny Cates will soon be front and center with his cosmic-adjacent Absolute Carnage event featuring alien symbiotes Carnage, Venom, and the like. The full teaser Marvel shared can be seen below.

Marvel announced that Nick Spencer will be returning to the 2099 timeline, although the form the story will take has yet to be not revealed. Miniseries? Event? A 2099 imprint relaunch? What we do know is that this new 2099 thing builds out of a moment from one of Spencer’s many cliffhangers in a recent Spider-Man comic.

Amazing Spider-Man #25 was filled with various developments that will branch off to different stories. While there’s a Mysterio arc, a Dr. Strange team-up, and a Sinister Syndicate storyline on the way, the biggest eye-opener was a short scene of a college lecture about how all these major advancements in Marvel’s modern universe will one day cause massive destruction in the future.

Halt and Catch Fire co-creator Christopher Cantwell will be writing an ongoing Doctor Doom comic book series launching later this year, illustrated by Star Wars and Invincible Iron Man artist Salvador Larroca.

The new series will seek to redefine the beloved Fantastic Four villain, as Victor Von Doom finds himself left without his traditional support structure — an army of obedient robots, a loving kingdom and a brotherhood of fellow vi..

DC Comics' newest epic has officially been unveiled. As part of San Diego Comic-Con's Sunday proceedings, DC officially announced a new revival of Strange Adventures, which will be brought to life by Tom King, Mitch Gerads, and Evan "Doc" Shaner.

King and Gerads previously collaborated on the Eisner-winning Mister Miracle maxiseries, as well as The Sheriff of Babylon. Shaner's work includes Future Quest, Flash Gordon, and The Terrifics.

Strange Adventures first debuted under the DC banner in the 1950s, providing an outlet for the publisher to adapt and tell new science-fiction titles. As the title went on, it began to feature stories involving the likes of Deadman and Adam Strange and the Atomic Knights. The series has been given several new revivals since 1999, most recently in an 80-page Vertigo one-shot in 2011.

As King teased earlier this year, Strange Adventures will be another twelve-issue series, in the similar vein of the work King and Gerads did on Mister Miracle.

"For me, that 12 issues is perfect." King told ComicBook.com earlier this year. "It just ends up being just a beautiful length. You can sit down and read it all in six hours if you want to, or if you're reading it issue by issue, you know that next year you'll get a new one. That's the format I like the best, 'cause to me it just feels like you're writing a novel."

"If you're looking back at my career, over the past four years I wrote Sheriff of Babylon, Omega Men, The Vision, and Mister Miracle." King continued. "Those are four novels. I could give those to anybody off the street and be like, 'This is a novel with pictures in it.' And I think that's important for the industry to have those. There's something nice about having a complete story in your hands, you're like, 'I did this.'"

#strangeadventures #tomking #sdcc

DC Announces New Strange Adventures Series From Mister Miracle Team & Doc Shaner
https://comicbook.com/dc/2019/07/21/strange-adventures-tom-king-mitch-gerads-new-series-mi..

SHOW MORE

Created 8 months ago.

173 videos

CategoryEntertainment

Former Air Force member who is dedicated to bringing an objective, unbiased viewpoint of pop culture, with an emphasis on comic books and movies. Thinking Critical is dedicated to delivering daily comic book and movie reviews. The channel will endeavor to provide an open forum for discussion of pop culture and other topical subjects. Finally, Thinking Critical will be a go-to source for in-depth analytic studies of pop culture and other topical subjects.