Greetings, Nerd Bastards readers. Jake here, from The Hall of Comics – where heroes shop. I’m a bagged and boarded professional. My passion (and business) is to read, write about and sell comics. In an alliance forged in the stars, The Hall of Comics will be dropping by Nerd Bastards weekly, to bring you the latest word and the week’s best pulls in comics. So sit back, grab a snack, and check out the latest comic book titles you should be reading.
This week is not an utter torrent for big name books, so if you find your stack a little light take the opportunity to catch up on what you may’ve passed on the two weeks prior. Marvel’s still got a bunch of debuts today, but they’re not the first tier names we’ve been seeing. Case in point – Ant-Man is back and I’m so glad. The title of the book may be Astonishing Ant-Man (a relief on my side of the counter because it’s getting tough to identity these different volumes when they’re all the same), but it’s the same great book that Nick Spencer & Ramon Rosanas had been delivering. Scott Lang is still running a small security firm out of Miami, staffed by ex super villains, and his luck hasn’t changed either. Spencer’s humor is so sharp and so loaded with ideas – it’s really made me fall in love with the characters and look forward to this title every month. Add this to your pull list right away if you haven’t already.
Titans Hunt purports to be a story resulting from DC’s recent Convergence event. If Convergence hadn’t existed, they probably could’ve still done this books as an Elseworlds-type series. We see familiar Teen Titan members like Roy Harper, Garth, and Dick Grayson with no memory of their superhero identities and no knowledge of each other, living out their civilian lives. But Lilith Clay seems to remember the heroes they should be and is working to bring them together. I was looking forward to this book in the hopes it would feature the classic Teen Titan members, but we don’t get that, at least not right away. The mystery is a little slow to get going. It’s written by Dan Abnett, who gave us one of the best Guardians of the Galaxy runs to date, and the concept is interesting so I’ll probably give it a few more issues to see if it kicks into gear.
Thanks to Warren Ellis’s quirky style, Karnak feels more like a new Image series than Marvel. He writes Karnak like a real a$$hole, which actually makes for a more interesting story. Karnak is a high priest of sorts among the Inhumans with a very specific set of principles. He has no love for the humans but freelances for SHIELD on occasion in exchange for funding for his monastery. Ellis’s greatest contribution to the character is that his power to find the weak point in anything now extends beyond physical structures and even people’s bodies all the way to their character and beliefs, as illustrated in an interesting interrogation scene. Again, not your typical Marvel story. It’s dark & rough, in tone and art. Definitely a Warren Ellis book.
Speaking of dark, Gail Simone goes to some places in Clean Room that we haven’t seen her go before. In the latest title from Vertigo, journalist Chloe Pierce is still struggling with her fiance’s suicide. He’d been obsessed with a book written by self-help guru, Astrid Mueller. Chloe begins to investigate Mueller, trying to find out about her Clean Room where a person’s “deepest fear and worst moments are revealed.” The art by Jon Davis-Hunt is clean, crisp, and easy on the eyes, nicely off-setting the subject matter. It’s a horror book of sorts, with Simone’s laser sharp writing and wicked dialogue with female characters who are far from orthodox – I enjoyed it. Did I mention it’s dark?
Marvel clearly has The Uncanny Inhumans positioned to be one of their tent-pole books and it has the smell of success about it. Charles Soule has written plenty of solid books for them lately and he proves here that he has a knack for a team book. It’s not Steve McNiven’s strongest work, a bit bogged down by inker Jay Leisten, but he still delivers some art on par with what this title is trying to be. If you read The Uncanny Inhumans #0 way too many months ago, you’ll finally be rewarded as it picks up that plot thread involving Kang. Other than that, it’s a clean start. Soule smartly makes this a good jumping on point for anyone who’s not familiar with the Inhumans, painting them in a light much like the X-Men used to be – outsiders determined to help the rest of the world even if that world is fearful of them. It’s well paced, taking time with some character-building dialogue, but quickly jumps into some chunky plot points. This first issue isn’t the end of the litmus test – we’ll need to see a few more to know for sure, but this could turn out to be the best of Marvel’s new All New, All Different series.
Alright kiddies, that’s it for me this week. Tune in next week for another addition of “Meanwhile at The Hall of Comics”. Wanna know what else is out this week? Check out the full list of releases at The Hall of Comics NEW RELEASE page HERE.
*The Hall of Comics is the comic book fan’s ideal store. We strive to earn the respect of every collector who walks through our doors, from long time fanatics to speculators to brand new fans. This always-passionate, always-original community is what we thrive on. We’re excited to inspire our fellow fans and share with them our love of reading as well as collecting.
The Hall of Comics is located at 3 Turnpike Road in Southborough, MA!