(From the top 10 most stupid action figures ever.)
We (and everyone else) have been talking about it a lot, and now, at last, all 52 new #1 issues for the D.C. Comics reboot of its universe for 2011 (and probably about 7 years beyond) have been announced. With some of them (like Green Arrow’s new series) being origin books but others relying on there having been backstory, it seems like there will be books that take place at various different times—not all of these #1s will be in continuity.
Here’s what you should (and shouldn’t) care about, after the break.
MUST CARE! MUST CARE!
I’m not suggesting you have to buy all of these, but these appear to be the best candidates for either greatness or extreme DCU relevance. The ones I definitely plan to buy are red, if my opinion matters to you. (And if it doesn’t, why are you reading this?)
· Action Comics #1, written by Grant Morrison and illustrated by Rags Morales. They had me at Morrison, for at least the trades. Grant can be hard to read in issue form because his work is often dense and long-form, but he’s gotten much better with that recently. But then they threw in Morales and I’m, like, so there.
· Batgirl #1, by Gail Simone, Ardian Syaf, and Vincente Cifuentes. Simone promises to handle Barbara Gordon getting the use of her legs back in a meaningful, honest way. I tend to like “funny” Simone more than serious Simone, but I’m happy to give this one a good shot.
· Batman #1, by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo. Snyder’s stuff has been brilliant.
· Batwoman #1, by JH Williams III, Haden Blackman, and Amy Reeder.
· Frankenstein, Agent of SHADE #1, by Jeff Lemire and Alberto Ponticelli. If the reviews are good, this will be a trade-buy for sure. But for now, I’m on the fence.
· The Fury Of Firestorm #1, by Ethan Van Sciver, Gail Simone and Yildiray Cinar.
· Green Lantern #1, by Geoff Johns and Doug Mahnke. Johns has done some solid stuff with GL in the past…I’m just not a fan. So I won’t buy. But lots of folks will. LOTS.
· Swamp Thing #1, by Scott Snyder, Yanick Paquette and Francesco Francavilla. The cover art is gorgeous.
· Wonder Woman #1, by Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang. Another likely trade purchase for me….
· Animal Man #1, by Jeff Lemire and Travel Foreman.
· Deathstroke #1, by Kyle Higgins, Joe Bennett and Art Thibert. Terminator gets his own series!
· Batman: The Dark Knight #1, by David Finch, with Jay Fabok on pencils. What?! Finch is already off the art? I’m leaning to the bailout button….
· Justice League #1, by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee. Notice: No “of America” in the title. Not sure what the difference will be, then, between JL and JLI. DC has said this will be an origin story. I so want this to be good, but I haven’t enjoyed much of Johns’ or Lee’s recent works.
MIGHT CARE? MIGHT CARE?
If these do something special, they could win my money, but I certainly won’t be buying them in issue form (i.e., I’ll wait for trade if I buy at all).
· All-Star Western #1, by Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmiotti, and art by Moritat. Back when Gotham City was an open town, Jonah Hex is hired by the sheriff to track down a serial killer. So, basically, this is the Jonah Hex relaunch. A title that nobody was buying before, even with all the critics loving it. One of these days, I’m going to buy up the JH trades and read ‘em all. But that day hasn’t come yet.
· Aquaman #1, written by Geoff Johns with art by Ivan Reis. Johns is past his prime, and Aquaman is silly. But if the reviews are good, I’ll get it in trade.
· Batman and Robin #1, by Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason
· Catwoman #1, by Judd Winick and Guillem March. Another one I desperately want to be good, but I’m skeptical.
· Demon Knights #1, by Paul Cornell, Diogenes Neves and Oclair Albert
· Justice League Dark #1, by Peter Milligan and Mikel Janin
· Red Hood and the Outlaws #1, by Scott Lobdell and Kenneth Rocafort. Jason Todd leads this new team of antiheroes, including Green Arrow’s rejected sidekick Arsenal and Starfire, a former prisoner of intergalactic war.
· Red Lanterns #1, by Peter Milligan, Ed Benes, and Rob Hunter. I do respect Milligan quite a bit…And this is supposed to be a more violent Lantern book. So I’m close to red on this one.
· Resurrection Man #1, by Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning and Fernando Dagnino
· Stormwatch #1, by Paul Cornell and Miguel Sepulveda. I really only dug Wildstorm when Warren Ellis was behind it, but it should be no surprise that Jim Lee’s babies are back. This book will be an origin story featuring Midnighter and Apollo, and Martian Manhunter. The question is: Why should we care about these “realistic” takes on Batman and Superman if they’re in the same universe as Batman and Superman?
· Suicide Squad #1, by Adam Green and Marco Rudy. Harley Quinn! Deadshot! King Shark! They’re a team of death-row super villains recruited by the government to take on missions so dangerous – they’re sheer suicide! Sounds a lot like Secret Six, which I’m sure is being cancelled. Sniff. Sniff.
· Superboy #1, by Scott Lobdell, RB Silva, and Rob Lean. Guess Lemire’s run is over. I liked his stuff, so I’m a little disappointed.
· Supergirl #1, by Michael Green and Mike Johnson, art by Mahmud Asrar. Another origin book, and here’s the tagline: Supergirl’s got the unpredictable behavior of a teenager, the same powers as Superman and none of his affection for the people of Earth.”
· Superman #1, written by George Perez and illustrated by Jesus Merino. Seeing Perez’s words and not his pictures? Hm. His run on Wonder Woman was the only one I ever bought, and it was pretty good, but much of the reason for that was his pictures. The jury is out—way out—on this one.
DON’T CARE. DON’T CARE.
These just aren’t for me, either because I don’t dig the heroes or I don’t dig the creators. Note to DC: 52 number one issues at three bucks a pop is a budget buster. Next time, hold off and spread ‘em out if you want stuff like this to make the cut.
· Birds of Prey #1, by Duane Swierczynski and Jesus Saiz
· Blue Beetle #1, by Tony Bedard and Ig Guara
· Detective Comics #1, by Tony Daniel
· The Flash #1, by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato. I just don’t dig what they’re doing now, so I’m sure I won’t dig it post-Flashpoint, either.
· Green Arrow #1, by JT Krul and Dan Jurgens
· Green Lantern Corps #1, by Peter Tomasi, Fernando Pasarin, and Scott Hanna
· Green Lantern: The New Guardians #1, by Tony Bedard, Tyler Kirkham, and Batt. What’s with all the one-name artists I’ve never heard of?
· Grifter #1, by Nathan Edmondson and art by Cafu and Bit. This is another “edge” book (i.e., the new Vertigo) about a black-op agent. How many of these does DC think the market will bear? (See also: Sgt. Rock and Blackhawks.)
· Hawk and Dove #1, by Sterling Gates and Rob Liefeld
· Justice League International #1, by Dan Jurgens and Aaron Lopresti. The good news: The original JLI books were great, and the creative team were collective geniuses. The bad news: None of them are on this book.
· Legion Lost #1, by Fabian Nicieza and Pete Woods
· Legion of Superheroes #1, by Paul Levitz and Francis Portela
· Nightwing #1, by Kyle Higgins and Eddy Barrows
· OMAC #1, by Dan DiDio, Keith Giffen and Scott Koblish. See, Giffen makes me wanna say yes, but the whole idea makes me wanna say no…At least with DiDio on board, you know it will stick around for about a year. I hear the man’s got connections in D.C….
· The Savage Hawkman #1, by Tony Daniel and Philip Tan. Tan increases the likelihood that series will be able to survive the onslaught of #1s, but Daniel is (ahem) a hack.
· Sgt. Rock and the Men of War #1, Ivan Brandon and Tom Derenick. The grandson of the original Sgt. Rock assumes the command of Easy Company, now a covert ops team.
· Teen Titans #1, by Scott Lobdell, Brett Booth and Norm Rapmund
· Voodoo #1, by Ron Marz and Sami Basri.
DON’T CARE! DON’T CARE!
And don’t wait for the trade, because some of these will probably die a quick, unreprinted death.
· Batwing #1, by Judd Winick and Ben Olvier. Why is Africa’s Batman named after what happens when your ball sack sticks to your thigh?
· Blackhawks #1, by Mike Costa and Ken Lashley. A mercenary book. Meh.
· Captain Atom #1, by JT Krul and Freddie Williams II.
· DC Universe Presents #1, by Paul Jenkins and Bernard Chang
· I, Vampire #1, by Josh Fialkov and Andrea Sorrentino
· Mr. Terrific #1, by Eric Wallace and Roger Robinson.
· Static Shock #1, by John Rozum, Scott McDaniel and Jonathan Glapion.