What’s I&N Store (12/17)

Hoping to get back into the flow of things this weekend–you know, thanks to the  two-week vacation that’s been taunting me since Thanksgiving.

Speaking of giving: just a few weeks ago, we unveiled the very lazy I&N Demand designation to let you know–in lieu of the typical I&N write-up–what we’re looking forward to most–up to five books–in a given week.

This week, we offer you the just as lazy Just I&N label, which will be applied to the one #1 we’re most excited about/interested in.

  • Dark Horse Presents #5 (Dark Horse)
  • Batman and Robin #37 (DC)
  • The Multiversity: Thunderworld #1 (DC)
  • Sandman: Overture #4 (DC/Vertigo)
  • Wonder Woman #37 (DC)
  • G.I. Joe #4 (IDW) I&N Demand
G.I. Joe #4

G.I. Joe #4

  • Alex + Ada #11 (Image) I&N Demand
Alex + Ada #11

Alex + Ada #11

  • Intersect #2 (Image)
  • The Wicked & The Divine #6 (Image) I&N Demand
The Wicked & The Divine #7

The Wicked & The Divine #6

  • The Damnation of Charlie Wormwood #3 (Dynamite)
  • The Bunker #8 (Oni)
  • Annihilator #4 (Legendary)
  • Rumble #1 (Image)
  • Wytches #3 (Image)
  • Zero #13 (Image) I&N Demand
Zero #13

Zero #13

  • All-New Captain America #2 (Marvel)
  • All-New X-Men #34 (Marvel)
  • Moon Knight #10 (Marvel) I&N Demand
Moon Knight #10

Moon Knight #10

  • Ms. Marvel #10 (Marvel)
  • Stumptown Vol. 3 #4 (Oni)
  • Cap Stone #1 (Titan)
  • Magnus: Robot Fighter #9 (Dynamite)
  • Mono #1 (Titan): Just I&N
Mono #1

Mono #1

  • Q2: The Return of Quantum and Woody #3 (Valiant)

What are you looking forward to this week?

Turning pages,

Scott

What’s I&N Store (12/10)

You know, it’s really not about what I’m looking forward to; no, it’s about you–about what you’re looking forward to.

If you’re not looking forward to these, then you’re damn backwards.

  • Astro City #18 (DC/Vertigo)
  • Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland #3 (IDW)
  • The October Faction #3 (IDW)
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #40 (IDW)
  • Bitch Planet #1 (Image)
  • Copperhead #4 (Image)
  • Southern Bastards #6 (Image) I&N Demand
  • Thor #3 (Marvel)
  • Afterlife With Archie #7 (Archie) I&N Demand
  • Brides of Helheim #3 (Oni)
  • Godkiller: Walk Among Us #3 (Black Mask)
  • Rachel Rising #30 (Abstract Studio)
  • The Valiant #1 (Valiant) I&N Demand
  • Thomas Alsop #7 (BOOM!)
  • Wild’s End #4 (BOOM!) I&N Demand
  • Solitary #1 (Devil’s Due)
  • Squarriors #1 (Devil’s Due)

So, what are you looking forward to this week?

Turning pages,

Scott

What’s I&N Store (12/3)

The crush continues.

Since I don’t have time to give these books the typical I&N treatment, I’ve decided to highlight the titles I’m most excited about.

I present to you my picks of the week–the (at most) five comics that are I&N Demand.

  • Hellboy and the BPRD #1 (Dark Horse) I&N Demand
Hellboy & The BRPD #1

Hellboy and The BRPD #1

  • Detective Comics #37 (DC)
  • Wolf Moon #1 (DC/Vertigo)
  • Birthright #3 (Image)
  • Low #5 (Image)
  • Tooth & Claw #2 (Image) I&N Demand
Tooth & Claw #2

Tooth & Claw #2

  • Angela: Asgard’s Assassin #1 (Marvel)
  • Iron Fist: The Living Weapon #7 (Marvel)
  • Men of Wrath #3 (Marvel/Icon)
  • Cloaks #4 (BOOM!)
  • Crossed +100 #1 (Avatar) I&N Demand
Crossed +100 #1

Crossed +100 #1

  • Dry Spell #4 (Action Labs/Danger Zone) I&N Demand
Dry Spell #4

Dry Spell #4

  • Evil Empire #8 (BOOM!)
  • Extinction Parade: War #5 (Avatar)
  • The Sixth Gun #45 (Oni)
  • Über #20 (Avatar)
  • War Stories #3 (Avatar)
  • The Twilight Zone #10 (Dynamite) I&N Demand
The Twilight Zone #10

The Twilight Zone #10

  • Valiant-Sized Quantum and Woody (Valiant)

What are you looking forward to this week?

Turning pages,

Scott

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Superhero Friday!

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Post-Thanksgiving Batbelly:

Feeling super full.

Feeling super full.

Who are you wearing today?

Turning pages,

Scott

What’s I&N Store (11/26)

Don’t have time to dress up the list.

So love the naked list.

  • Colder: Bad Seed #2 (Dark Horse)
  • The Massive #29 (Dark Horse)
  • Mind MGMT #28 (Dark Horse)
  • Bodies #5 (DC/Vertigo)
  • Dead Boy Detectives #11 (DC/Vertigo)
  • Gotham by Midnight #1 (DC)
  • Superman #36 (DC)
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #40 (IDW)
  • Lazarus #13 (Image)
  • The Manhattan Projects #25 (Image)
  • Rasputin #2 (Image)
  • Sheltered #13 (Image)
  • Sidekick #9 (Image)
  • Trees #7 (Image)
  • Captain America and the Mighty Avengers #2 (Marvel)
  • The Delinquents #4 (Valiant)
  • Stumptown Vol. 3 #3 (Oni)

Avery’s Pick of the Week:

  • Bee & Puppycat #6 (BOOM!)

What are you looking forward to this week?

Turning pages,

Scott

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Superhero Friday!

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Now more than ever.

IMG_2185-0.JPG

It’s the American Way, after all.

Who are you wearing today?

Turning pages,

Scott

What’s I&N Store (11/19)

Too many books, too little time.  That’s right: I don’t have the time to do my regular rundown.  Still want to keep you I&N the loop, though.  Here’s your list of bag-worthy books:

  • Dark Horse Presents #4 (Dark Horse)
  • Astro City #17 (Vertigo)
  • Batman and Robin #36 (DC)
  • Multiversity: Pax Americana #1 (DC)
  • The Last Fall #3 (IDW)
  • Intersect #1 (Image)
  • Zero #12 (Image)
  • Daredevil #10 (Marvel)
  • Loki: Agent of Asgard #8 (Marvel)
  • Magneto #12 (Marvel)
  • Moon Knight #9 (Marvel)
  • Uncanny X-Men #28 (Marvel)
  • Annihilator #3 (Legendary)
  • Epochalypse #1 (Legendary)
  • The Last Broadcast #7 (Archaia/BOOM!)
  • Magnus: Robot Fighter #8 (Dynamite)
  • X-O Manowar #30 (Valiant)

Avery’s Pick of the Week:

  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic #25 (IDW)

What are you looking forward to this week?

Turning pages–slowly,

Scott

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Superhero Friday!

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My Iron Man oil can–Tony Stark style.

More like "Still $3.99--unless, of course, we decide to add a page or two; then it's $4.99."

More like “Still only $3.99–unless, of course, we decide to add a page or two; then it’s $4.99.  Sucker.”

Thank Rob Halford it’s Superhero Friday Night!

Who are you wearing today?

Turning pages,

Scott

What’s I&N Store (11/12)

Grades, grades, grades. Too much of my time awake is spent evaluating others’ attempts at connecting with me. Sometimes I wish I could shut it off. Other times, I knock on wood: if it weren’t for that, I’d have nothing.

  • Resurrectionists #1 (Dark Horse): For the most part, I’ll try anything–well, any comic, anyway–with Fred Van Lente’s name on it.  Hmm.  What if FVL’s name were on wasabi-slathered sushi…or on a ghost pepper…or Dorito-flavored soda…
  • The Bigger Bang #1 (IDW): From the creative team of D.J. Kirkbride and Vassilis Gogtzilas.  Who?  Yeah, I don’t know; but I didn’t know Ken Krekeler and had no idea how much I was going to like Dry Spell, either.  So, there you go.
The Bigger Bang #1

The Bigger Bang #1

  • The October Faction #2 (IDW): Thought the first one was interesting enough.  Sure, Steve Niles has a knack for horror, but it’s artist Damien Worm who has burrowed his way into my brain.
  • Alex + Ada #10 (Image): Love how Luna and Vaughn leave us hanging issue after issue.  Smart storytelling–especially in the quiet moments, in the subtle shifts in the artwork from panel to panel.
Alex + Ada #10

Alex + Ada #10

  • Copperhead #3 (Image): #2 didn’t bite me in the same way #1 did.  Don’t get me wrong: it was good; just wasn’t as transcendent as the first.
  • Drifter #1 (Image): Preview sounds like Heart of DarknessConradical!  Again: We’ll see if Ivan Brandon–another writer with which I’m not familiar–and Nic Klein–who did nice work on Winter Soldier–can bring da gloom.
  • The Fade Out #3 (Image): Honesty: felt like I was fading out a bit while reading #2.  Even though Brubaker and Phillips have certainly earned my loyalty, it may be that I’m sticking around because I’m supposed to–like it’s some cosmic comic rule to read it, especially following the fantastic Fatale.
The Fade Out #3

The Fade Out #3

  • Outcast #5 (Image): The flame is set on low, but it still burns when you touch it. That about covers Outcast.
  • Wytches #2 (Image): I really wish I had more time to give this one the review it deserves. I’ve taken Snyder to task in the past; and this highest of high profile releases comes closest to what we’ve come to expect from the writer of the horror classic Severed. Thing is, it’s still terribly flawed. And it doesn’t help that Aguirre Sacasa and Hack’s Sabrina hit many of the same notes–and hit them more effectively. Funny how we haven’t heard as much about the offering from Archie Comics–the new home of horror–as we have about Wytches. Scary how powerful a spell hype happens to be, no?
Wytches #2

Wytches #2

  • All-New Captain America #1 (Marvel): I hated Remender’s take on Cap. Turns out, his run was tantamount to sabotage–in order to prepare us for this natural evolution of/blasphemous take on the beloved American hero. Damn right I’m gonna buy it! Doesn’t hurt that I’m not so down on Remender of late, thanks to his lovely Low.
All-New Captain America #1

All-New Captain America #1

  • Captain America and The Mighty Avengers #1 (Marvel): Hey: if you’re gonna roll out a new model, you might as well roll it out. Al Ewing got me to believe in Loki, a character I’ve never cared for; I’m figuring that he’ll get me to believe in Sam Wilson as Cap, a character I’ve always loved.
  • Silver Surfer #7 (Marvel): So much fun!  Slott and Allred can do no wrong with the unlikely and unbeatable pair of Norrin Radd and his polka-dotted partner Dawn Greenwood.  Surffice it to say: this is Marvel’s best monthly book.  But you already knew that.
Silver Surfer #7

Silver Surfer #7

  • Thor #2 (Marvel): I liked #1–even if it were a little heavy handed.  Then again, Thor’s necessarily heavy handed, ain’t he–or, well, she?  Going in, we knew what Aaron’s capable of; but this Russell Dauterman’s a revelation!
  • The Damnation of Charlie Wormwood #2 (Dynamite): We’ve heard this story before, haven’t we?  Kinda like how this one’s being told.  Maybe it’s the English teacher angle…
  • Evil Empire #7 (BOOM!): This Evil Empire is all good.  #5 was one of my Top 5 Books of September, and Max Bemis isn’t showing any sign of slowing down.  Can’t finish my Evil Empire preview without a view of Jay Shaw’s cover:
Evil Empire #7

Evil Empire #7

  • Holmes vs. Houdini #2 (Dynamite): Oh, why not.  It ain’t a mystery; it ain’t magic–it’s both!
  • Thomas Alsop #6 (BOOM!): Started off really, really well.  We celebrated #2 as one of our favorite books of July.  Since then, there’s been a bit of a drop off; I’m not as giddy about getting it as I was early on.  But, overall, the storytelling’s been fine, and I still dig Thomas a lot.  Gotta hand it to him: he’s got an Manhattan-sized ego–and, boy, does he need it!
  • Wild’s End #3 (BOOM!): I liked #1 enough to try #2–and thank goodness I did!  #2 flew over the boundary for a Sixer–and was one of my favorite books of October.  Never expected to say this: I.N.J. Culbard’s one of my favorite artists!  No, really, he has to be, right?  He’s one half of this mini and one half of 2000AD’s Brass Sun.  Yeah, I love Brass Sun.  Don’t you?
Wild's End #3

Wild’s End #3

What are you looking forward to this week?

Turning pages,

Scott

Derekommendations: Demons and Dreams

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Hey there everyone. Been a while. Read any good comics lately?

As some of you may know, in our real lives we here at I&N are educators (“What’s that?!” you ask, “A comic critiquing website doesn’t pay the bills?!” I know. I’m as surprised as you.) Well this new school year has hit this particular educator like a ton of bricks. (Seriously, if you know any teachers, give them a hug. Or maybe a flask.)

The sad result? You haven’t heard much from me lately. (How do you go on?) But there were two recent titles that I couldn’t let go by without comment and still consider myself a comics scholar, aesthete and general know-it-all. To wit:

Demon #1 (self-published): Award-winning cartoonist Jason Shiga’s (Empire State, Meanwhile) latest features a determined young man with a never-say-die attitude…towards dying. Without giving too much away, the story reads like a gleefully demented version of Groundhog’s Day. Shiga delivers his devilishly black humor with impeccable comic pacing. Originally presented as a daily, serialized webcomic, the story benefits from the more traditional comic book format, as it displays Shiga’s mastery of the page turn for comedic effect. The simplicity of the setting (most of the story takes place in the same room) lends a certain claustrophobia, as events slowly grow ever more surreal. The art, while pleasingly cartoony, has a schematic quality in both style and layout, that brings to mind the ironically understated work of Jason or Chris Ware. This matter-of-fact presentation, given the bleak subject matter, only heightens the awful, laugh-out-loud moments. And of those, there are quite a few. Because, while suicide may not be painless, in Shiga’s manic, twisted hands, it is hilarious.

Demon #1

Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland #1 (IDW): Winsor McCay is one of the greatest artists (not just cartoonists) of the 20th century. His work has inspired everyone from Walt Disney to Maurice Sendak. His seminal achievement is arguably Little Nemo in Slumberland. In newspapers across the country, McCay presented a weekly art nouveau tableau of fantasy, in which Nemo’s dream world came breathtakingly to life. Never had such a wild imagination been rendered with such precise, consummate draftsmanship. At the very dawn of comics McCay set a bar for the medium that has never been surpassed. Eric Shanower and Gabriel Rodriguez attempting to revisit this masterwork is then, the most quietly audacious move of the year.

Of the two, Mr. Rodriguez has by far the more difficult task. How does an artist, even one as talented as Rodriguez, interpret the work of the most gifted fabulist ever to hold a pencil, without seeming slavish or paling by comparison? Happily, he seems up to the challenge. While obviously owing much to McCay’s work, Rodriguez introduces a more modern cinematic flair to the proceedings (McCay, for instance, nearly always kept his main characters in mid-range shots, almost never employing close-ups) that may have been influenced by the gorgeous, but structurally flawed, animated movie adaptation of 1989. While nothing can ever quite compare to the original, the artwork here is playful, precise, and candy-colored (hues skillfully provided by Nelson Daniel. McCay, of course, colored the originals.) In other words, it is everything Little Nemo should be. Well, almost. If there is a quibble, it’s that, other than a couple of pages (8 and 9) he doesn’t attempt the kind of innovative panel designs that were so integral to the original. Ah well, room to stretch in future issues.

As for Mr. Shanower’s part, he does a fine job of providing just enough of McCay’s greatest hits for Rodriguez to exploit, while establishing a rhythm that stays true to the original and simultaneously taking advantage of the comic book format. Not a small feat. His best decision however, may have been to not set this in McCay’s world of 1905, nor to try to update the original character for our time. In a small but wise step, he introduces a new Nemo, establishing a fresh start and allowing himself some latitude with the character’s development. It also may make him more relatable to young readers. Because at the end of the day, that’s the point. Shanower and Rodriguez have created that all-too-rare thing: an excellent comic book for children. And if this book introduces the unparalleled wonder of McCay’s masterpiece to a new generation, then that alone is cause for celebration.

Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland #1

For more about Demon visit www.shigabooks.com

Issues 1 & 2 of Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland are on the shelves now. Grab them while you can!

Yours in Comics,

Derek

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