Buy These Flippin’ Comics!!! (7.09.14) – You Don’t Know (Wait for it…) DICK
Do you know the man in the image above? Does he look familiar? No, it’s not that douche-chill Agent Ward, but close! It’s former circus freak, former Robin the Boy Wonder, former cop, former vigilante Nightwing, former Batman, formerly dead (yeah, he died) Dick Grayson – back from the semi-afterlife and ready to tackle his new career, that of globetrotting superspy! Sound intriguing? Well step inside and let’s discuss horrible Dick puns, teen time cops, future-noir, and more!
A full list of this week’s releases can be found HERE.
OMEGA-LEVEL Book of the Week!
Grayson #1 – DC Comics
(W) Tim Seeley (A) Mikel Janin (C/A) Andrew Robinson
(Variant Cover – as seen above) Jock
Lemme just get this outta the way first. The “You may think you know Nightwing, but you don’t know DICK!” is such an egregiously bad tagline for the book, and yet another charming example of the frat-house mentality going on over at DC, though not NEARLY as bad as the “They call us weapons, we call them TOOLS” house ad for Teen Titans. I just picture marketing/editorial meetings at DC being held concurrently while watching MMA pay-per-views, the room smelling of stale pizza, sweaty cargo shorts, and AXE body spray laid on just a taaaad too thick (and by that I mean at all). While Marvel seems to be going for the all-inclusive model of book publishing – meaning telling stories with a diverse group of characters, within the framework of the superhero genre but not beholden to that genre, thereby reflecting the diverse tastes and demographics of a comic-reading audience – DC seems to be persistently catering to the “teenage boy” crowd. And not even the smart teenage boys. The dim ones who think Zack Snyder is a god amongst men. Now I’m sure there are some very talented people over at DC. In fact, I know as much, but it disturbs me that their voices are drowned in a sea of creative and marketing decisions that are at best juvenile and at worst misogynistic and/or narrow-minded.
However, this week Grayson #1 drops, and it looks, well, promising. Dick Grayson has always been a fan favorite, despite having a solo title that always felt a bit like “Batman Jr.,” or “Daredevil-lite,” the shadow of the Bat looming a bit too large over the character. Dick Grayson did shine, however, as the leader of the Teen Titans/Titans, but in insanely Robin-crowded New 52, something had to give. So during Forever Evil after being unmasked to the world, Nightwing had a bomb put in his chest and was “killed” by Lex Luthor (heart-slowing medicine is a Bat-verse staple) to save him. Now back among the living, Grayson has dropped the domino mask and batons, grabbed a glock 9 milli, and entered the world of shaken martinis and femme fatales as an agent for an organization known as Spyral (fans of Batman, Inc. may recognize the name, but it was new to me).
What’s to love about this bold new direction for the character is that it is the FIRST of it’s kind in the three-year history of the New 52. Finally we get an absolutely fresh take on one of the oldest characters in the DCU. I hate making comparisons to Marvel, but over there you have books like Hawkeye, She-Hulk, Ms. Marvel, Rocket Raccoon, Moon Knight and Magneto…all books that are completely different from one another, yet still in the same universe, all looking at the superhero genre in a different way. You just don’t get this at DC, where nearly every book is a spin on how Geoff Johns writes and how Jim Lee draws. So, if you like the idea of seeing something different in the DCU, give this book a shot. I look forward to the day when I can expect more than just one decent title or two coming out from the DC Universe each month, and Grayson is a step in the right direction. And if that ain’t enough Dick for you, let the world know how much you love the “D” by grabbing one a’ these sweet tees!
The Private Eye #7 – Panel Syndicate
(W) Brian K. Vaughan (A) Marcos Martin
This book/download actually dropped a couple weeks ago, but dammit if I don’t always seem to miss it when it releases! This is probably actually one of the only downsides to having a digital-only comic (and one not being released through apps like Comixology) – marketing the book is a bit more difficult. However, thanks to this recent Comics Alliance article, I am now back in the game! This book is an absolute dream of a comic – pairing SAGA writer Vaughan with dynamite cartoonist Marcos Martin for a futuristic noir set in LA (where all the best noir comes to play), where privacy is a commodity that people will kill for. The comic has many things to love about it, like how the team of Martin & Vaughan work so well together, but what I find most striking is the absolutely eye-popping technicolor palette that colorist Muntsa Vicente brings to the table. In stark contrast to the blues and greys of Blade Runner, this neo-L.A. is vibrant and hyperlucid, almost cartoon-like, which helps make the masks everyone wears even more bizarre and surrealistic, and also makes the book jump off the screen. So head over to panelsyndicate.com and pick up the newest issue. It’s one of those sweet “name your price” deals, so if you’re not sure about making the investment, pay a single fucking penny (ya cheapskate) to check out the first issue. In theory you could pay a single penny for every issue, so really, you have almost nothing to lose! Except integrity. Sack up and give
Rocket Girl Vol. 1: Times Squared
(W) Brandon Montclare (A) Amy Reeder
You really can’t pass up these Image $10 trades, especially when the talent merits the purchase. Rocket Girl, for those not in the know, is a fun, eye-catching book about a 16 year old Time Cop from the year 2014, sent back to 1986 to prevent crimes against time. It’s a bit of a silly premise pulled off with a lot of style and humor, and Amy Reeder’s art is incredible. When this book wraps up, I expect her to be on the Marvel/DC train toot-sweet. Tout de suite? Toot suite? I dunno. Do yourself a favor and shelve the two shitty Marvel books you were gonna buy (nobody needs 4 Avengers titles every month), and give this trade paperback a gander!
That’s gonna do it for me this week! I expect many a excoriation for me not name-dropping any Marvel shizz this week, so please let me know what Brian Michel Bendy or Met Friction book I missed in the comments below!
Until next Wednesday!