With the final issue of Matt Fraction and Howard Chaykin’s “Satellite Sam” due out any day now, the setting for the second series has already been announced. It’ll be jumping coasts to L.A. and instead of focusing on the making of a sci-fi TV show, the action will be centered around a western. I’m honestly a little surprised that we’re getting another series of this since the first one didn’t exactly set the sales charts on fire. The second volume, however, was better than the first. I’d like to see that upward trend continue for the final volume, which will make this news a lot more exciting in retrospect.
In the meantime, the second Image Expo is set to kick off the Thursday before Comic-Con in San Francisco. If you can’t make it to that, they’ll be putting out a preview book featuring all the titles being spotlighted there the following Wednesday -- preview night for Comic-Con -- for a dollar. Sounds nice. But it’ll be more interesting to hear how much people are going to be able to sell it for in the days afterward.
Tokyo Ghost #1: Rick Remender teams up with Sean Murphy for sci-fi story about a future where humanity has become addicted to technology and gangsters control the supply. Two of their enforcers -- Led Dent and Debbie Decay -- are being sent out from L.A. to take down the last tech-less bastion of the world: The Garden Nation of Tokyo. Putting aside the fact that Japan seems like it’d be the perfect hub for this tech-obsessed world, the final line of this solicitation doesn’t do it any favors. Telling us that this series will “examine our growing addiction to technology while thirsting for a nature we continue to destroy” has nothing but the ring of sanctimony to it. Technology: BAD! Nature: GOOD! Maybe Remender has some twist to this narrative in mind for it to avoid it being shrill and predictable. Or it could just wind up like “Low,” a beautiful-looking misfire. In its favor are the protagonist’s names, which suggest that things aren’t going to be taken too seriously.
Plutonia #1 (of 4): Huh. Jeff Lemire appears to be turning into the next Bendis with his current prolificacy. In addition to this new miniseries, the first volume of his sci-fi series with Dustin Nguyen “Descender” is solicited here (which I will definitely be picking up), there’s his upcoming superhero series “The Black Hammer” for Dark Horse, he’s currently writing “All-New Hawkeye” for Marvel, and is rumored to be taking over the core “X-Men” titles once Bendis leaves. Given how well “Sweet Tooth” worked out, this is a good thing. Now we’ll just need to see if he can manage this prolificacy without his creator-owned titles going off the rails schedule-wise.
As for this series, it’s about some kids who find the body of the world’s greatest superhero in the woods near their hometown. So, basically “Stand By Me” if the body the boys were going to see was Superman’s. What can I say? I get glib when I don’t have enough to go on.
Head Lopper #1:
“HEAD LOPPER is what you’d get if Mike Mignola wrote an issue of Brian Wood’s Northlanders by way of James Stokoe’s ORC STAIN.” – Multiversity Comics.
WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN!? Well, you did name-check three creators that I like and “Orc Stain.” So I guess I can’t be that angry with you Multiversity Comics.
Faster Than Light #1: Nope, not an adaptation of the 2D sci-fi roguelike which has stolen over two hundred hours of my life (and counting) on PC. It is science fiction, as the discovery of this kind of travel opens up the universe for humans to explore. But are we ready for it? If the fact that “Star Trek” and “Gravity” are simply cited as touchstones for the story, as opposed to giving the reader any indication as to what this series will really be about, then the answer is no.
Saga vol. 5: It’s the team-up volume! The Brand is working with Gwendolyn, Sophie, and Lying Cat to find the items needed to bring The Will out of his coma. Meanwhile, Marko and Prince Robot IV are working together to find their kidnapped children. Some of these people play well with others, some most definitely do not. Watching all of them try to work together within their respective groups sounds delightfully entertaining! This is the volume I’m most looking forward to reading since the first.
The Fade Out, Act Two: The first act made me excited to read comics by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips again. I’d really like to see them keep the momentum going in their Hollywood noir murder mystery. That said, issue #9, the first part of “Act Three” is being solicited here as well. Given that this is a story about movies, and most films usually adhere to a three-act-structure, are we coming up on the end already? It’s not stated here, but if it is we may be hearing about the next Brubaker/Phillips project at the Image Expo. In other words -- keep watching this space.
Manifest Destiny vol. 3: The first volume was good, and the second was equally enjoyable. With the third, Lewis and Clark encounter a new civilization in the wilds of America. This discovery is said to be the thing which will finally push their crew to mutiny. Given the quality of the first two volumes, this piques my curiosity rather than my snark. The only question now is whether the remaining issues in this volume will come out on time and allow it to arrive in September.
No Mercy vol. 1: Alex De Campi and Carla Speed McNeil introduce us to some teenagers from the U.S.who get stranded in a remote part of Central America after an accident. What the solicitation text is leaving out here is that nobody likes American Teenagers in this neck of the woods and the proceedings are closer to a horror movie than anything else. I like the creators and can’t remember the last time I’ve read something with that kind of setup. Count me in!
Deadly Class vol. 3: Snake Pit: If I sounded really cynical about Remender’s new series, then here’s the perfect tonic for that. Vol. 2 ended in about the worst possible way for Marcus and his girlfriend Maria as they were caught by the cartel leader whose son was killed by the girl in vol. 1. Normally this would be a rather depressing start, but the tone of “Deadly Class” is pitched so far over the top compared to the writer’s other works that seeing how bad things can get is actually part of the fun. Don’t expect either Marcus or Maria to die right away. There’s lots more fun to be had as they’re made to suffer at the hands of some bad, bad men! If this doesn’t sound like your idea of a good time, then you’ll want to avoid Jason Aaron’s “Scalped” which is similarly-toned and even better.