Collected Comics Library Podcast #372
29.6Mb; 31m 42s
Well it’s that time of year again, time to Adopt a Character, creator, genre or just about anything else in the world of comic books and get acquainted with it all year long. It’s more of a challenge than anything else, and it’s been a fun way to read something out of the norm or try something new.
Here’s the rundown of what I have picked in past years:
2008: Luke Cage and Iron Fist
2009: The Spirit Archives Volumes 1-27
2010: Steve Ditko’s Spider-Man
2011: Silver Age X-Men
2012: Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.
2013: Fantastic Four by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby
As you can see, it’s been mostly Marvel and that’s no different this time around. I’m going with Namor, The Sub-Mariner. I have all of the Masterworks, but I am going to forgo the Golden Age for now and start with Namor’s appearances in the Atlas Era and then move to his solo Silver Age adventures. Namor, of course, was created by the great Bill Everett and was with him all the way up until his death, a death that came all too soon. You may recall that Blake Bell has put together a very nice two-volume set of The Bill Everett Archives and the biography Fire & Water over at Fantagraphics. I read Volume 1, but have yet to read Volume 2. I think that is where I will begin. I will keep you posted throughout the year on my progress and for fun I will also be reading more of the Classic Valiant universe. More on that in the podcast.
Also on the show there’s a great question that I received from LinkedIn, of all places, on “What are the best Omnibus’ to buy?” – a loaded question, if there ever was one! That’s leads me to the unofficial announcement of the Infinity Gauntlet Omnibus due out in July. Here are the particulars (which are different from the Wikipedia entry):
Lastly, I do a rundown of the contents included in Batman: The TV Stories. This book is on the heels of the excellent Batman ’66 comic and the companion book will add a “Biff! Bam! Zonk! Pow!” punch to your collected editions library. You’ll be surprised just how DC put together this very affordable, very fun trade.
Is there one book that is a “must have” that came out this week? My friends Andy Tom (@AndrewJTom), Chris Campbell (ChrisCampbell8), Marc Diefenderfer (@Dief88), Shane Hannafey, Adam Besenyodi (@adambesenyodi), and I (@ChrisCCL) are sharing six comic book collected editions, reprints and/or graphic novels released this week that you may be interested in.
Picked by @AndrewJTom Teen Titans Omnibus By Geoff Johns HC (DC Comics)
For some reason I felt the need to get in shape for the spring. So…this past week, I started a daily exercise regimen consisting of a run on the treadmill and weightlifting. Subliminally though, it may have had something to do with seeing this massive heavyweight tome on the release list for this week. Back in the days before Infinite Crisis, Geoff Johns stepped into some pretty big shoes formerly worn by Marv Wolfman and George Perez. Not only did he have to live up to the reputation and expectations that Marv and George had set on Titans back in the 80s, but he had to do it without using mainstay Titans Dick Grayson, Wally West, and Donna Troy. Regardless of facing a gargantuan legacy, Johns crafted some outstanding stories which elevate his run to one of the most enjoyable books of it’s day. It’s really a fantastic run and gets collected (deservedly so) in this Omnibus format alongside Johns’ Flash volumes and Hawkman Omnibus. The Teen Titans Geoff Johns Omnibus clocks in at a whopping 1440 pages. It collects the entirety of Johns Titans run and takes the characters all of the way up to Infinite Crisis. This heavyweight contender will set you back about $150 at regular retail (before discounts), but be assured that you’ll get your money’s worth; and after a read it may even claim the coveted top prize of Heavyweight Champion. Collects Teen Titans #1/2, #1-26, #29-46 and #50, Legends Of The DC Universe #2, Titans Secret Files #2, Teen Titans/Outsiders Secret Files 2003, Beast Boy #1-4, Teen Titans/Legion Of Super Heroes Special #1, Outsiders #24-25, Robin #147-147, Infinite Crisis #5-6 and Teen Titans Annual #1, 1,440 pages, $150.00
Picked by @ChrisCampbell8 Punisher By Greg Rucka Volume 3 TPB (Marvel)
Frank Castle is one of those characters that has enjoyed a great deal of popularity over the years, but yet seems to get his title relaunched constantly, whether in a new volume or a new mini-series. As a Punisher fan, I’m of two minds on the issue, but the upside for Marvel readers is that almost every time we get a new series, we get a new, or at least fresh, approach on the character. And Greg Rucka’s tour with Frank Castle is no different. This is certainly not FrankenCastle (worth reading, by the way) or Ennis or Baron, or any other recent approach on the character. No, this is Gotham Central meets Punisher and I am happy for that. We see Rachel Cole accepting her new role as she becomes hunted by the NYPD. This 3rd volume marks the final installment of the series, but is still worth reading for the glorious art by Marco Checchetto and the conclusion (or is it?) of Rachel’s story. As with many of my favorite Frank Castle stories, the plot is just a framework to tell the real story. I highly recommend this collection. Collects The Punisher (2011) #11-16, $16.99
Picked by @adambesenyodi Avengers vs. Thanos TPB (Marvel)Collecting nearly 500 pages of Marvel cosmic goodness, Avengers vs. Thanos is a great introduction to the Mad Titan and his initial epic clashes with Earth’s heroes. Regardless of whether you had to ask the geek next to you who the purple-skinned lover of Death was when you first saw him on the big screen, or you read these as single issues when they originally appeared in the early ’70s, it’s great to have these stories collected under one cover. Marvel has made it clear that Thanos is important to their universe and their future with the first post-credits stinger in the Avengers movie and with the first Avengers Assemble story arc last summer. That should be reason enough to pick up this primer on the would-be god, but the bonus is getting to revisit some great storytelling from likes of Jim Starlin and others. Collects Iron Man (1968) #55, Captain Marvel (1968) #25-33, Marvel Feature (1971) #12, Daredevil (1964) #105-107, Avengers (1963) #125, Warlock (1972) #9-11 and #15, Avengers Annual (1967) #7, Marvel Two-In-One Annual #2, and material from Logan’s Run #6, $34.99
Picked by @Dief88 Tales From Beyond Science HC (Image), $34.99
Tales from Beyond Science is a collection of early-’90s one-off stories from 2000 AD, drawn by Rian Hughes and written by Alan McKenzie, John Smith, and a young Mark Millar. Similar to 2000 AD’s Future Shocks, these stories take on bizarre mysteries ranging from the Bermuda Triangle to the thirteenth calendar month. Maybe most exciting, though, this collection is completely re-lettered and includes newly colorized artwork and brand-new spoof covers by Hughes. For fans of the creators involved (or off-the-wall stories in general), Tales from Beyond Science should make for a worthwhile addition to your shelf.
Picked by @ChrisCCL Alter Ego #115 – 3-D Comics (TwoMorrow’s Publishing), $8.95
When you think of pop culture in 1950’s one of that comes to mind is 3-D movies. There were a gazillion of them made! Some good but mostly bad. Well the 3-D genre even crossed over into the comic books and what a hit it was! Roy Thomas’ Alter Ego magazine takes a “look” at the craze with this special issue featuring the work of Jack Kirby, Joe Simon, Mort Meskin and Joe Kubert just to name a few. It even comes with its’ own pair of 3-D glasses and if you decide to get the digital version of the mag, TwoMorrows will send you a the glasses for free!
Marvel Masterworks: Atlas Era Jungle Adventure Vol. 3 HC (Marvel)
Ever since Tarzan, the African jungle has been a place of wild beasts, warlords and women. Wait! What? Yes, that’s right! Woman is the sex that you don’t want to mess with in deepest, darkest Africa. Presented here is the third Masterworks that showcases the Atlas Era Jungle Adventures of Lorna, Jann and Leopard Girl. Not to be out done, some of the manliest of men are also presented: Greg Knight (Lorna’s companion), Lo-Zar (a close look-a-like to Ka-Zar) and Waku, Prince of the Bantu (who may just remind you of T’Challa, The Black Panther). If it’s scantily mildly clad, postcode action you want, then Jungle Adventure is what you need! Featuring the great work of Joe Maneely, Don Rico, Syd Shores, John Romita, Carl Burgos, Don Heck, Jay Scott Pike and Christopher Rule. Collects Lorna The Jungle Girl #13-16, Jungle Tales #5-7 and Jungle Action #4-6, $74.99
Now it’s your turn. What books that came out this week do you recommend? Take a look at the sidebar to see this weeks collected edition releases.