By Bobby Shortle Hello everyone and welcome to Talking Comics Presents! Every week we here at Talking Comics will endeavor to give you a personal view of the book we are most excited for, and why! Remember , I want your input, what books are you excited for? Have you found any great fan art this week? Whats your favorite cover, panel or bit of writing (easy on the spoilers)? Do you have a video testimonial, audio blurb or art of your own you’d like to share? Send these things to firstname.lastname@example.org and the best of them will be included here from now on! Don’t forget to check out our interviews with Matt Fraction and Jonathan Hickman, Sean Lamont’s take on Marvel Unlimited, a new Shenani-Girl Column, and of course all of the reviews from our amazing contributors. Well, enough with the who, where, what, why and how, I give to you Talking Comics Presents for the books releasing on 3/20/13. Action Comics #18 Written by Grant Morrison Art by Rags Morales and Mark Probst Recommended by Sean Lamont DC Comics says: “You don’t dare miss Grant Morrison’s stunning, extra-sized final issue of ACTION COMICS! It’s no small battle as Superman fights to save all of creation in this epic! This issue is destined to be a milestone in The New 52! Plus: In the backup story, whatever happened to the men of tomorrow(s)?” Sean Lamont says: “Grant Morrisson brings his zany multi-space/time/dimensional overarching story and his run to a close with this issue. While it had its ups and downs reading month to month, going back and re-reading the 17 issues so far in a single stretch has me pretty excited on how this 18-issue arc is going to cross the finish line.” Constantine #1 Written by Jeff Lemire and Ray Fawkes Art by Renato Guedes Recommended by Stephanie Cooke, Bobby Shortle, and Travis McCollum DC Comics says: “The star of JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK is unleashed in his all-new ongoing series! Liar, cheater, manipulator…John Constantine is all of these, and yet he uses these skills and more to protect the world from the darkest corners of the DC Universe. What Constantine learns in this first issue will shake the very foundations of the New 52…and only he knows how to deal with it!” Stephanie Cooke says: “I’ll give you two good reasons to be excited: 1) JEFF frickin’ LEMIRE and 2) Ray Fawkes… heck, I’ll throw in 3) THEY’RE BOTH FROM TORONTO! Ok, so those are really great reasons to read something, unless you’re me, but this is pretty well guaranteed to be great, so there’s that. I really want to get more familiar with this character, so I’m excited to check it out.” Bobby Shortle says: “Constantine is a perfect storm of conditions for me, because not only is it a character I’m deeply interested in knowing more about, but it’s also written by one of my favorite writers in all of comics. Jeff Lemire is hitting on all cylinders right now, and his co-writer Ray Fawkes has been doing great work with Lemire on Justice League Dark and in his time filling in for Gail Simone on Batgirl. The preview in last week’s DC books was tantalizing and I couldn’t be more excited to delve deeper into this supernatural con man’s story. Travis McCollum: “Jeff Lemire and Ray Fawkes have been absolutely killing it on Justice League Dark. With the same writing team now taking on the chain-smoking antihero in his own solo book, I have no doubt that it’s going to be a fantastic read. If nothing else, I have a feeling it will work as a great companion piece to Justice League Dark, and more JLD is always a good thing.” WONDER WOMAN AMAZON PRINCESS ARCHIVES VOL.1 (DC) Written by Robert Kanigher Art by Ross Andru & Mike Esposito Recommended by Bob Reyer DC Comics Says: “At last, the wild WONDER WOMAN adventures from the late 1950s are collected in full color in a new ARCHIVES series! Collecting WONDER WOMAN #98-110.” Bob Reyer says: “Except for a reprint here-or-there, I don’t own any of the stories from this period of Wonder Woman, although I certainly did as a kid! Writer Robert Kanigher took over the book after the 1947 death of creator Dr. William Moulton Marston, and with artists Andru & Esposito, who now replaced original WW artist Harry G. Peter, together crafted the definitive Wonder Woman for those of us who grew up in the 1960s. With DC’s Archive program seemingly grinding to a halt, I am very glad that this volume saw the light of day, containing as it does the first appearance of Wonder Girl and the Silver Age re-telling of Wonder Woman’s origin!” Saga #11 Written by Brian K. Vaughan Art by Fiona Staple Recommended by Melissa Megan and Stephanie Cooke Image Comics says: “It’s an intergalactic family reunion, as Hazel’s parents and grandparents join forces to escape a dying world. Not to mention, there’s a bit of a misunderstanding between “Sexy Alana” and Marko. Safe sex isn’t something to take lightly when you’re on the lam, but it appears that in the heat of passion, caution always gets thrown to the wind. So what might be the future consequences?” Melissa Megan says: “I’m most looking forward to Saga #11. It’s my number one favorite monthly running right now, every single episode offers awesome greatness with new creatures, planets and of course new adventures for Alana, Marko and Hazel.” Stephanie Cooke says: “This is for obvious reasons. Brian K. Vaughn. Fiona Staples. SPACE …And other cool stuff. Like MORE space.” Revival #8 Written by Tim Seeley Art by Mike Norton Recommended by Stephanie Cooke Image Comics says: “Mayor Dillisch deals with body parts littering his highways. May Tao investigates Lester while Lester invesigates May Tao. Em gets an invite to an unusual Church meeting.” Stephanie Cooke says: “Have I mentioned that I love this comic yet? No? Well… go read it.” Five Ghosts: The Haunting of Fabian Gray #1 Written by Frank J. Barbiere Art by Chris Mooneyham Recommended by Joey Braccino Image Comics: “A BOLD NEW ERA OF PULP ADVENTURE COMICS BEGINS HERE After a tragic encounter with an artifact known as “The Dreamstone,” infamous treasure hunter Fabian Gray was possessed by five literary ghosts and has been granted access to their unique abilities. Join writer FRANK J. BARBIERE and artist CHRIS MOONEYHAM for the most exciting debut of 2013 as they introduce you to a unique world full of action, black magic, exotic locales, and literary allusion!” Joey Braccino says: “The first issue Frank Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham’s Five Ghosts was originally released as a self-published comic at last years NYCC. The book features the adventures of treasure-hunter Fabian Gray, who, through a quirk of mystical fate, is haunted by “five literary ghosts” and has access to their supernatural powers! Image, in all its infinite publishing wisdom, has picked up Five Ghosts and is publishing the Old School pulp-horror, globe-trotting adventure as a five-issue mini-series. Part One drops this Wednesday, and I’m looking forward to some good ol’ fashioned creator owned goodness.” Judge Dredd: Year One #1 Written by Matt Smith Art by Simon Coleby Recommended by Travis McCollum IDW Publishing says: “The Long Hard Road” begins here! In an all-new adventure from Joe Dredd’s early days as a Mega City-One Judge, writer (and Eagle-award-winning 2000 AD Editor) Matt Smith presents a tale where “all the young juves, carry the news,” only in this case, the news is delivered with a lethal blow! Travis McCollum says: “As most people already know by now, I am absolutely loving what IDW has done with the Judge Dredd character in recent months. His ongoing continues to be one of the most solidly consistent books released every month and anyone who ever loved 2000 AD should definitely pick it up. That being said, the world could always use a little more Dredd, especially the young adventures of the infamous Judge, so I’m beyond excited for the upcoming Judge Dredd: Year One miniseries. It has everything I love about the current series, just with a more fresh faced and kinder (who are we kidding he was probably a jerk then too) Dredd. It’ll be a drokking good time.” Captain Marvel #11 Written by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Christopher Sebela Art by Filipe Andrade Recommended by Mara Whiteside and Bob Reyer Marvel Comics says: “NEW Deathbird! Terror from the skies as Captain Marvel confronts a new version of an old foe! Can’t keep our girl down. Captain America gives Carol new wings in the form of old wheels. What would happen if your enemies knew your most dangerous secret? Captain Marvel is about to find out!” Mara Whiteside says: “Most excited for: Captain Marvel. The cover looks fantastic, and Andrade’s artwork on the interiors makes this series fun. Plus, Carol’s condition will force her to grow in unique ways.” Bob Reyer says: “Since it began, Kelly Sue DeConnick’s Captain Marvel has been one of my favorite books. Interesting plots and fun action sequences, a varied but always fitting selection of artists, and most importantly, a lead character with a great sense of purpose, but who still doubts her ability to make good on the legacy she’s inherited. As we left Carol in #10, she was dealing with a physical ailment that could preclude her being a hero, and one of her oldest and deadliest foes seems to know it too! YIKES!!” X-Factor #253 Written by Peter David Art by Leonard Kirk Recommended by Bob Reyer Marvel Comics Says: “HELL ON EARTH WAR’ Continues! • The story years in the making continues here as X-Factor struggles to stop the Lords of Hell from tearing the Earth apart in their battle for dominance! • Wolfsbane fights for the life of her son, Tier. His birth signaled the start of this war…and now she needs to keep him from falling into the clutches of those who would kill him to end it! • And as X-Factor is caught in the crossfire, a member of the team falls into Hell’s clutches” Bob Reyer Says: “Despite the tumult, Peter David has kept the focus of his self-contained “event” on his typically well-crafted characters. This pays big dividends as we get nearer the conclusion, as we truly care about what could happen to these people we have grown to cherish!” X-O Manowar #11 Written by Robert Venditti Art by Cary Nord Recommended by Adam Shaw Valiant Comics says: “Aric of Dacia, a 4th century Visigoth armed with the universe’s most powerful weapon, is all that stands between the Earth and all-out annihilation at the hands of the alien race that abducted him from his own time. Now, the day of Aric’s reckoning has finally come. As his Visigoth forefathers sacked Rome, Aric will take the battle directly to his oppressors on the Vine homeworld of Loam. He will decimate their armies, he will level their cities – and he will not stop until the whole of their empire is reduced to ash. This is PLANET DEATH!” Adam Shaw says: “This is the first part of Valiant’s first big event since their relaunch last summer. It’s shaping up to be be action fueled battle of galactic proportions. For those Green Lantern fans that are interested in what Venditti can bring to a universe, you should pick up X-O.For everyone else, enjoy X-O kicking alien ass!” TOME: Volume 1: Vampirism 44 Flood says: “TOME is an annual 12×18″ limited-edition anthology with music CD showcasing world-class artists as they explore a single, esoteric theme using the comic book, painting, photography, and music mediums. This inaugural volume of TOME is 200 pages with a theme of “VAMPIRISM.” Steve Seigh says: “Hot damn! This week is going to be a killer on the old wallet. There are so many great books that I’m looking forward to this week, including but not limited to Saga #11, Superior Spider-Man #6, Avengers #8, and so many more. Though, the book I am looking forward to exploring the most has got to be my copy of TOME: Volume One: Vampirism from the comic collective that is 44 Flood. This over-sized collection of comic goodness features short stories, poems, paintings, and music from artists such as: Menton 3, Kasra Ghanbari, Ben Templesmith, Chet Zar, Steve Niles, Dave McKean and many more. I pledged my money to this amazing project about six months ago and are just now reaping the rewards. This book is a major undertaking that I imagine is going to take me quite some time to sift through. But rather than view it as a mountain to climb, I’m thinking of it as a cave to be explored and excavated, till the very last stone is overturned. This is by far my most anticipated book of this week. I’m ready. Let’s go. “ Community Picks: Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #21 John D. says: “I have to call attention to Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #21 because it’s been a reliable book for me in my pull list each month. I am looking forward to it particularly this week because of all the sadness and sorrow from DC’s bat-books, so I’m optimistic that Ultimate Spider-Man can supply some much-needed levity to my weekly reading stack. Not to mention the current Venom storyline is in full swing, pun intended of course.” Saga #11 John D. says: “Saga is pretty much not just my book of the week but book of the month. After the last page of issue #10, I can’t wait to see how The Will reacts. He’s been a great Han Solo-esque character to this series and his morality is constantly been brought to the forefront. I look forward to the adventures of the Saga cast each and every month but The Will especially grabs my attention.” Daredevil #24 Luke H. says: “I love Daredevil and the run by Waid has only increased that love. After the shock of the last issue I can’t wait to see what happens next!” All New X-Men #9 Luke H. says: “Between this book and Uncanny X-Men, both have really hooked me back into the X books and always excited when they come out.” Avengers #8 Luke H. says: “Jonathan Hickman has brought what he did with the FF to the Avengers, and its amazing. I’m still confused on the whole white event thing but excited to find out!” Batman and Robin #18 Chuck R. says: “I would have to say that my book of the week was Batman & Robin #18. This was a wonderful example of “Narrative Art”. Not a single word balloon and yet you could follow the entire story. Also the art was so strong I could feel every emotion. — Very well done, a wonderful read.” Fan Art: Last, but not least we have a piece of art entitled My Little Bat-Ponies, with pencils by Joey Martinez and colors by our own Steve Seigh! Well that’s all for this week’s Talking Comics Presents, don’t forget to send your picks and submissions to email@example.com, and check out the Talking Comics Podcast. On this week’s show we discussed comic book spoilers and our favorite books of the week. 2 Responses James Hammond March 21, 2013 X-O Manowar’s cover really sets the mood for me, looking like a halo and Metroid Prime mash-up – damn I want that to be real. Also Visigoth was originally pronounced ‘Wisigoth’ which always make me laugh. Log in to Reply Bobby Shortle March 21, 2013 I don’t read X-O but I couldn’t agree more! Anything that gives off a Metroid vibe instantly gets me excited. I wish we could get an ongoing tile about Samus from a great creator! 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