While these solicitations cover what we’ll get from the company at the end of the year, a couple titles that will be coming out in 2015 (or further) have also got my attention this week. Image will be publishing an English version of the French series “Red Skin” (to be retitled “Red One”) with art from Terry Dodson. Even if the story is undercooked, it’ll likely be worth checking out for Dodson’s art alone -- much like the time John Cassaday illustrated “I Am Legion.” Then there’s the news that with sixteen issues left on his “Batman” contract, artist Greg Capullo may come back to Image to relaunch his old series “The Creech” with Scott Snyder in tow. There’s still some uncertainty here, which is good as I’m hoping for more from this team than rebooting an old Image superhero title from years ago that no one cared about in the first place.
Bitch Planet #1 & Rumble #1: It’s high-concept hybrid time with these titles. The former is from writer Kelly Sue DeConnick and artist Valentine De Landro, is a sci-fi riff on the “women in prison” genre, and is described as “Margaret Atwood meets ‘Inglorious Basterds.’” The latter is brought to us by the “B.P.R.D.” team of writer John Arcudi and artist James Harren, has a scarecrow god coming back to settle old scores, and is hyped up as “Louis C.K. meets Robert E. Howard in a David Fincher universe.” Uh, okay. I think whoever wrote the solicitation text for these titles was trying too hard to be clever with these hybrid concepts, but I’m not going to hold that against these series. I’ll be checking them both out, though I’m definitely more interested in “Rumble” due to the fact that it’s coming from the proven team of Arcudi/Harren.
They’re Not Like Us #1: This comes to us from Image publisher Eric Stephenson and artist Simon Gane, and it appears to be some kind of riff on people with superhuman abilities. I can’t be sure as the description of this issue is vague to the point of unhelpfulness. Then you’ve got that cover. Now, the image of a girl about to commit suicide should be an attention grabber, but then you notice the dialogue in the cover image. Someone on the ground says, “That girl is going to jump.” As if that wasn’t obvious from the image itself. He also doesn’t seem to be that bent out of shape about it as he’s taking the time to enunciate each word in a way that doesn’t warrant an exclamation point at the end of his sentence. The things this cover and solicitation get wrong are truly impressive. Clearly, Stephenson was afforded no special treatment in putting together and marketing this comic despite his status as publisher.
Sunstone: From the solicitation text, “Two women deal with modern themes of sex, relationships, and fetishism in this erotic romantic comedy.” Now that’s how you get someone’s attention, and I was intrigued… until I saw the cover. (Don’t worry, it’s safe for work.) After looking at it, I thought to myself, “Hey, those girls look familiar.” I then went over to a certain folder on my external drive, opened it up and realized that I had downloaded the comics that will likely make up this OGN from a certain site specializing in naughty comics a few years back. So not only does this look interesting, I have a moral imperative to buy this in December and make sure writer/artist Stjepan Sejic gets my money for his work.
Black Science vol. 2: Hello, Nowhere: Let me reiterate: that twist at the end of the first volume was a great one. Now the time has come to see if Rick Remender will be able to deliver on the potential that it has to offer the story. We’re also told that the jumps everyone is making through the eververse may not be as random as initially thought, so there’s going to be some uber-plot to deal with as well. All that, and art from Matteo Scalera with coloring by Dean White, make this a Christmas Eve gift that I’d certainly want to open early.
Manifest Destiny vol. 2: Amphibia & Insecta: Now here’s another follow-up to a first volume that I really liked. This series chronicling what Lewis & Clark really encountered on their journey was a fun trip into the wild of 19th Century America that played up adventure over horror to great effect. Granted, I had a few issues with how writer Chris Dingess characterized his leads, and badass Native American warrior Sacajawea, but they weren’t so damaging that they can’t be fixed with a little work. There’s really no indication as to what this volume will be about, aside from the title, but I certainly don’t mind going in blind and finding out for myself.
Morning Glories Compendium: Collecting issues #1-38. Um, I seem to recall writer Nick Spencer saying that this series was going to have a sixty-issue run. If that’s still the case, then collecting all of the volumes released to date seems to make things a bit lopsided. No matter. Either you’ll read this and be hooked by the writer’s vision, or chuck it in the trash after reaching the cliffhanger it ends on and exclaiming, “OH COME ON!” Regardless, $60 for 1000+ pages of comics is still a great deal, regardless of how you actually feel about them.
Outcast by Kirkman & Azaceta vol. 1: More fun from the solicitation text, “NEW HORROR SERIES FROM THE WALKING DEAD CREATOR ROBERT KIRKMAN!” Yeah, that pretty much does it for me.
Saga vol. 4: Just in time for Christmas. Vaughan and Staples are going to make a TON of money off of all the people who will be buying this as gifts for themselves and their friends. Deservedly so, too, as each volume keeps getting better. This time, Marko and Alanna try to make ends meet by way of superhero performance art… At least, that’s the impression I got from how the previous volume ended. We’ll see how that works out for them.
Sex Criminals vol. 2: Two Worlds, One Cup: Hey Fraction, I SEE WHAT YOU DID THERE WITH THE TITLE! Anyway, same deal here as it was with “Black Science” and “Manifest Destiny.” Liked the first volume, looking to see how this one builds on that. Hopefully by making antagonist Kegelface into an actual character instead of a no-fun zone. That being said, we’re told here that the honeymoon is over for orgasmic time-stoppers Jon and Suzie and now they have to deal with where their relationship goes after the initial lust has faded. Based on what I’m reading here, it sounds like the book may not need Kegelface to drag it into the no-fun zone. I hope I’m wrong about that.
Stray Bullets vol. 6: Killers: Yeah, Image is just cramming EVERYTHING into this month. Though this says “vol. 6,” if you’re like me and picked up the “Uber Alles” omnibus, this is the volume which follows that. So, instead of having to wait YEARS to find out what happened to Virginia Applejack as the people who read this series in single issue and trade paperback form did, we only had to wait eight months. Very much looking forward to this, and… Hey, that’s Spanish Scott on the cover! Even though he’s been dead for quite some time, it’s good to know that this collection will be giving us another flashback to this particular killer’s glory days.