ARCHER AND ARMSTRONG #1 (VALIANT) – Coming off the incredibly strong relaunches of XO-Manowar and Harbinger, this title revives one of Valiant’s more offbeat titles, a supernatural buddy adventure with the strong creative team of Fred Van Lente and Clayton Henry. With roots in ancient Egyptian mythology and starring two fan-favorite characters from Valiant’s past, this looks like another win out of the resurgent company.
BATMAN #12 (DC) – Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s phenomenal run on Batman wrapped up the year-long first storyline “Court of Owls” last issue, and this issue serves as a stand-alone epilogue. From minute one, this has been the best comic DC has been putting out in the New 52, with phenomenal art, gripping storytelling, and note-perfect characterization. If you haven’t been reading it yet, jump on now!
GAMBIT #1 (MARVEL) – This book is a guilty pleasure for me, but Gambit has always been a character I enjoyed when written well, and the smooth Cajun thief has lots of potential for solo adventures if the creative team gives him room to breath from the overall X-men community. James Asmus and Clay Mann seem to have a very good grasp on the character, so here’s hoping for a fun sleeper hit!
GODZILLA: HALF CENTURY WAR #1 (IDW) – Written and drawn by legendary creator James Stokoe, this Godzilla miniseries is another in a line of miniseries that looks like it’ll be as strong or better than the main title. With stunning art and what looks like strong storytelling, this is a must for any giant monster fans.
THE MASSIVE #3 (DARK HORSE) – Brian Wood writes dystopias like no one’s business. Coming off of the six-year epic DMZ, taking place in an America ripped apart by civil war, this new high-seas thriller trades man-made disaster for natural disaster. Set in a world where nature has flooded the Earth and created a brutal, inhospitable environment, this title blends high-seas action with geopolitical suspense. Another winner from Wood.
ARCHER AND ARMSTRONG #1 (VALIANT)-My favorite title from the early days of Valiant is back. While this go around is missing Barry Windsor Smith, it makes up for it by giving us Fred Van Lente and Clayton Henry. I’ve missed my warrior monk and immortal drunkard, and look forward to having them around for a while.
ATOMIC ROBO: REAL SCIENCE ADVENTURES #5 (RED 5)- Short stories featuring everyone’s favorite Robot Adventurer. Great fun in bite sized doses
DEATHSTROKE #12 (DC)- The final battle between Lobo and Deathstroke as only Rob Liefeld can tell it. Few creators make fans more emotional than Rob Liefeld. The one thing Liefeld brings to every title he works on is his love of the medium. His enthusiasm shows on the page. The action moves from panel to panel with a glee that can sometimes overtake the details. This is a story that Rob is having fun telling.
PUNK ROCK JESUS #2 (DC/VERTIGO)-The writing. The art. Sean Murphy can do no wrong with this title. It will read fantastic when it is collected, but it is reading great now.
AMERICAN VAMPIRE LORD OF NIGHTMARES #3 (DC/VERTIGO) – Scott Snyder’s second American Vampire spin-off mini continues, and this one should be one that I hate on principle. When Dracula shows up in vampire stories it makes me groan. But Snyder’s crafted his story well enough to make this use fairly interesting so far. So I’ll let it slide for now and see where things take us.
ARCHER & ARMSTRONG #1 (VALIANT) – Like the rest of the Valiant relaunches, I know virtually nothing about this book outside of the name. But so far we’ve been three for three on first issues, and two for two on the series that have gone one to their second issues. With a score that good, I can’t help but be eager to read this book too.
BATMAN #12 (DC) – The first year of the New 52 finishes and with it comes the epilogue to Snyder’s Court of Owls story. Snyder’s own comments about this story say the focus will be more on a recent addition to the cast of Batman, Harper Row. Snyder hasn’t missed a single beat in his Batman run yet, so I trust him taking the focus and placing it on this unknown character. Normally I wouldn’t, but he’s earned the trust.
GAMBIT #1 (MARVEL) – I love Gambit. I don’t care what anyone else says about the character he’s been a favourite of mine since the 90’s X-Men cartoon and the Jim Lee era of the books. I’ve read every mini and ongoing series he’s had, and while some of stunk, overall he’s remained a character I’m happy to see return in an ongoing of his own. This one promises to be a little more focused on his time away from the X-Men, and with no mention of the Thieves/ Assassin’s Guild stuff that tormented his other books. This is a Gambit book I’ve been waiting a long time for.
TRANSFORMERS ROBOTS IN DISGUISE ONGOING #8 (IDW) – Another list, another Transformers mention. I just can’t believe how good these books have been since they relaunched earlier this year. This issue brings the fan favourite Dinobots (minus Grimlock, who’ll be featured in More Than Meets The Eye) back to the books and back to Cybertron. How they’ll fit into the new status quo and the political landscape of the new Cybertronian Autocracy is anyones guess. I can’t wait to find out for myself.
Our team was in quite the agreeable mood this week. ARCHER AND ARMSTRONG #1 is a unanimous choice between the staff followed by BATMAN, GAMBIT and GODZILLA HALF CENTURY WAR with two selections each.
Now tell us what YOU’RE looking forward to this week.