Variant Covers: Sue Storm Wants Cthulhu To Move His Tentacles.

The skull threatens to crack. Athena surely rests inside. The caffeine isn’t cutting it, and I have a mental list to transcribe into a word box. This is Variant Covers, the column where I tell you the funny books I’m buying on a given week. This is also Caffeine Powered, exhausted, with a splitting headache, cursing the Christian guilt that won’t let him skip a week. I can detach myself from the Bearded Floaty Guy, but I can’t remove myself from the morals drilled in by the indoctrination process.

Save me.

In the interest of saving my rotting synapses, I’m going to be succinct this week. A mere one-week trifling attempt to counteract my raging verbosity. Shit, I’m blowing it already.


Finder Library Volume 1.
When Carla Speed McNeil’s Finder: Voice came out this year, I became aware that I was missing out on something fantastic. It happens a lot. Never stops me from feeling shitty about myself, or from feeling surprised. Gasp! I missed something else? I’m a philistine, man. Anyways, this may be the place for me to start. Finder Library Volume 1 collects the first four Finder books. It’s a massive motherfucker. For $25, you can snag 616 pages of what is purportedly awesomeness. I’m being vague as fuck, I know. Caffeine interested! Caffeine want!

Want a premise? Boom!

The series is set in a vastly depopulated far-future Earth where numerous hunter-gatherer cultures, some human and some not, surround densely overpopulated domed city-states of recognizably modern urbanites functioning at a high technological level. Our own civilization and its considerably more advanced successors are lost to prehistory save for a few twentieth-century pop cultural artifacts conveniently recovered by well-paid psychics.

I’m sure it’s generalizing a lot. But when  Laura Hudson of Comics Alliance calls the series “one of the best comics ever“, I pay attention. Smarter minds with sharper opinions garner my intrigue.  Martyn Pedler also has an awesome interview with McNeil over at io9.


Future Foundation #1.
I never thought I’d live in a universe where the most hotly awaited title of a week would be a Fantastic Four-based comic. Such is the power of Jonathan Hickman and Steve Epting. Fucking Hickman, man. Dude is a philosophical warrior, somehow managing to plot roughly a thousand arcs at once, while mixing in utilitarian philosophy, the Negative Zone, and outstanding emotional moments starring a dude who has been one-dimensional for god knows how many years – yeah, I’m still weeping over Johnny Storm.

This is the fucking title I want. I want it tomorrow. I want it now.

If you’re not down with the cosmos, the First Family of Marvel, or Sue Storm in a skin-tight minimalist costume, I don’t know. I respect your opinion, but I’m positively losing my cool over it.


Batman Inc. #4.
This installment of Batman Inc. seems to have been caught up in corporate synergy hell. Despite the fact that last issue’s storyline was a cliffhanger, Wayne is getting yanked into a storyline with Batwoman. This is ostensibly to hype up the forthcoming Batwoman stand alone. Which has now gotten delayed. Yeah man, this is all sorts of not cool. I mean, I’m an unabashed Grant Morrison  worshiper, so I’m going to accept anything the dude puts out. Even with that in mind, I still have to throw the flag when it comes to interrupting a storyline in the middle of it, to force a crossover to promote a book which is no longer coming out when it was supposed to.



Neonomicon #4.
It’s nearing the end of March and you probably haven’t had your fill of Cthulhu tentacle rape in a while. You’re missing the sight of giant green penises ejaculating over men and women in a hidden dungeon sauna bathtub pool thing, and you’re dying to get your next installment. Worry not, friends. Neonomicon is here, and it is ready to give you the final haunting issue of Alan Moore and Jacen Burrow’s Lovecraftian nightmare mindfuck. This series is painful for me to read. Extremely. It’s haunting in ways that I didn’t think comic books could be, but goddamn.

It doesn’t hurt that on top of it, the entire work is Moore toying around with the concept of fiction being able to create worlds, to manipulate reality. The tension between the comic book medium, the comic book itself, and the reader in this series is palpable. Moore is fucking with us, and frankly, I like the feeling of his beard in my nether regions. Summon on, ye faithful warlock.


Those are the primary comics I’m checking out this week, what’s catching your eye? Hit me.