Afternoon, all. After last week’s new comic day confusion you’ll be happy to know that everything’s back to predictable normality. Except for this week’s Wolverine comic that is, but I’ll get to that later.
As you darken our doorstep this Thursday you may find that you’re momentarily blinded by an offensively shiny red hardcover. More so if it’s sunny, though I’d bet my pocket money it won’t be. Said shiny red book is The Collected Doug Wright: Canada’s Master Cartoonist, designed and co-edited by that wag Seth whose graphic design you will have seen on the Peanuts collections. It’s the first of two volumes presenting a comprehensive look at the life and career of the incredibly popular 1960s cartoonist. Wright’s family are in on this one and had complete access to his journal and archives so expect all sorts of never-before-seen pictures and whatnot. In his essay (also in the book) journalist Brad MacKay says:
If you grew up in Canada during the 1960s or 1970s, then you likely need little introduction to Doug Wright or his masterpiece of Canadian cartooning, Doug Wright’s Family. Created on the cusp of the 1950s under its birth name Nipper, the semi-autobiographical strip epitomised the competing joys and agonies of family life for millions of readers, and earned Wright a reputation as Canada’s equivalent to Charles Schulz.
Drawn & Quarterly have a PDF preview for you here.
There’s two more big hardcovers of note this week; Boris Karloff Tales of Mystery Archives Volume 1 which is full of the sorts of things you’d see after having cheese before bedtime, and Creepy Archives Volume 3 which is more or less as horrifying and eerie as the last two that seemed to go down so well. Tales of Mystery has been unavailable for almost thirty years so it’s about time someone dragged it howling from the vaults. In its twenty-year run the suspenseful series featured some of the most renowned creators in the business including Alex Toth, Joe Orlando, Arnold Drake, Len Wein , Al Williamson, Jerry Robinson and more, who you’ll no doubt recognise in this first volume. It collects the highly sought-after first two issues of Boris Karloff Thriller as well as the first two of Boris Karloff Tales of Mystery, topped off with an introduction from Karloff’s daughter Sara. Dark Horse have promised three more volumes in the series so you’ve much to look forward to!
Adrian Tomine’s 32 Stories have also been out of print (for a bit), but they’re back in a nifty wee box set presenting the rare, early edition Optic Nerve mini-comics. In the box are seven faithful reproductions of the photocopied and stapled things he made back in the day when he was about 17 before anyone had ever heard of him.
A new Vertigo series from Mike Carey and Pete Gross (the team behind the Eisner-nominated Lucifer) starts this week! Unwritten #1 is all about Tom Taylor, a Christopher Robin of sorts living a life completely overshadow by his father’s popular novels about the boy wizard Tommy Taylor. The boys talk about their new conspiracy mystery over at Newsarama and the LA Times. Preview too!
Bob Fingerman’s (Minimum Wage) brand-spanking From the Ashes #1 is a post-apocalyptic vision of New York and a ‘f*ck you! to memoir comics’. “I figure, if you’re going to do a memoir, let’s make it an interesting story. Who said that memoirs have to have already happened?” he says. There’s more of that interview over at The Daily Cross Hatch and also a great preview at Heidi McDonald’s The Beat, from whom I have purloined this picture. Keep up to date on Fingerman’s blog. It’s full of sketches and stuff.
Speaking of post-apocalyptic, also out is the Dark Reign tie-in All New Savage She-Hulk #2 (Of 4) by fan-favourite Fred Van Lente with Peter Vale and Robert Atkins. We’ve still got a few copies of the first issue in the shop which is reviewed here and here. Van Lente says, “I love the post-apocalyptic genre, and a while back editor Mark Paniccia turned me on to Kirby's Kamandi, which I really enjoyed. So dealing with the culture, all the back-engineered, scavenged technology, commenting on the state of the current Marvel Universe...all that stuff is right in my wheelhouse. In many ways this is "our Kamandi," and we're having a blast doing it, cutting between that savage era and our modern 'Dark Reign'.”
There’s a preview here.
Secret Six #9 is a another tie-in this week so pick it up if you’ve been following the Battle for the Cowl! Two of the six members want the cowl for themselves and Ragdoll’s all set to be the new Boy Wonder. Check out the preview.
If you haven’t been reading Incognito now’s your chance to jump on with the Incognito Must-Have one-shot! It collects the first two sell-out issues by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips which combined with #3 (also back in stock) will bring you bang up to date. Expect #4 mid-June. Here’s a review of the series thus far.
Howling Commandos by Jesse Alexander (Heroes, Lost, Alias) features the dark inky art of Gosh-favourite John Paul Leon who has recently been gracing the covers of Brian Wood’s DMZ. You’ll be wanting this one-shot for the stunning artwork and also because it sets the stage for the upcoming and highly anticipated Jeph Loeb/Tim Sale Captain America: White due out in July. Leon was interviewed by Newsarama last year here, where you’ll also find lots of pages of art to peruse.
Onto Marvel’s ‘true Howling Commandos’ (it wasn’t me) Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers #1 (of 4) by Eiser-nominee Chris Eliopoulos and Ig Guara! There’s a threat so huge only a teleporting puppy and his assembled team of animals can handle it. From the previews this looks nuts.
The mother of all crossovers hits the shelf this week in the form of Fusion #1 by Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, (both Guardians of the Galaxy, Nova) and Tyler Kirkham (Ultimate Fantastic Four, Broken Trinity: Aftermath)! Top Cow’s Cyberforce and Hunter-Killer collide with Marvel’s Mighty Avengers and Thunderbolts in an event too big for one issue so expect two more to come! Preview here.
And finally, this week’s issue of Wolverine is non-chronological! Gasp! Marvel thought this one through and this is their theory: The issue you’ll see this week, Wolverine #73 by Jason Aaron and Daniel Way with art by Adam Kubert and Tommy Lee Edwards, features two two-part stories starring the modern-day version of Wolverine which would be good jumping-on point for new readers and fans of the latest Hugh Jackman film. You can expect the next bit of Mark Millar and Steve McNiven’s Old Man Logan in Wolverine #72 next week.
In other news, this coming Saturday you can see Brendan McCarthy talking about his career in comics, film, design, TV and more (much more – this guy’s done everything) at Minet Library from 2:30pm. Details over at their website.
And that’s that.