Thursday, August 23, 2018

DC November Solicits

It may sound strange but I am having this swell of optimism in my heart about comics and DC Comics in general. Perhaps it is the hazy afterglow of convention season. Perhaps it is because there seems to be a sort of sweep of creativity going through the DC books recently. At the very least, you can say the company is trying new stuff while leaning into their proven commodities.

That feeling only got larger in my heart when I looked at the November solicits, seen here at Newsarama:

Maybe it is because one of my favorite artists is doing Supergirl. Maybe it is because a new Shazam book is going to be on the shelf. Maybe it is because Scott Snyder continues to keep the new Justice League book flying at warp 9. Maybe it is G. Willow Wilson is starting on Wonder Woman. Maybe it is one of my all time favorite comic writers back on a monthly?

Maybe it is all of it.

But it starts with seeing Doc Shaner doing November's Supergirl. Not that I don't love Kevin Maguire. But I have been wanting to see Shaner draw Supergirl for a long time. Getting a whole issue of him on Kara (maybe more than one issue?) set the tone!

On to the super-solicits and other stuff that caught my eye.

written by MARC ANDREYKO 
art and cover by EVAN “DOC” SHANER
variant cover by AMANDA CONNER

Supergirl goes bar-hopping…in space! Hot on the trail of Rogol Zaar, Supergirl is on the hunt for the Krypton killer’s mysterious cohorts known as the Circle. That quest finds the Maid of Might kicking over rocks at a scuzzy intergalactic dive bar, where she runs into Ambush Bug of all people—not to mention a wretched hive of scum and villains who want to kill her, too. But before Supergirl can track down Krypton’s former location, her suit’s yellow sun energy starts to run out, which is going to leave her gasping in the vacuum of space!

So I was a little underwhelmed with the opening issue of this new direction. But DC sure is doing all it can to at least keep me casually happy. Adding Doc Shaner on art is a great way to start. I even like his rendition of an axe-wielding Supergirl on the cover. Throw in an Amanda Conner playful variant and I have the book's covers favorably.

Ambush Bug has a historical dealing with Supergirl so I like this aspect both in Daring New and in Convergence. We saw him in Man of Steel #2 in an outer space bar where Rogol Zaar first heard about Superman. So nice continuity.

art and cover by RYAN SOOK
variant cover by FRANCIS MANAPUL

The murderous mystery of the Red Cloud uncovered! Clark Kent draws closer to revealing a secret crime family that has operated for years in Metropolis, but the family’s enforcer—the mysterious Red Cloud—proves she’s a match for even the Man of Steel with an attack that leaves Superman breathless. Don’t miss the last-page shocker as we reveal the true face of the Red Cloud!

I think I am more interested in the Action Comics street level stories Brian Michael Bendis is spinning for Superman. The idea of Superman clashing with arson and mobsters in a meaningful way is innovative and sort of fascinating. As long as Red Cloud isn't Lois or Lana, I'll be happy.

Ryan Sook doing internal art is always a draw.

art and cover by IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO
variant cover by ADAM HUGHES

What could tempt Kryptonian criminal General Zod to reenter the Phantom Zone after years of imprisonment? As Superman tries to free himself from the Kryptonian jail and fight off the monster who destroyed Krypton, Zod returns to face Rogol Zaar and get vengeance for his dead world and its lost potential.

In direct opposition of Action, is the Zaar and Zod heavy Action Comics. I have been a bit weary of Zod since New Krypton. I am already a little sick of Zaar. So I hope this arc ends pretty quickly.

written by PETER J. TOMASI
cover by DAN MORA

Jon Kent learns it’s better to be dead than red…Kryptonite, that is! Traveling the cosmos to get home and escape the intergalactic teen baddies known as the Gang, Superboy and Robin wind up on the so-called “Planet of Mystery.” There, Superboy deals with Red Kryptonite exposure, which throws his powers out of whack, while the planet haunts and taunts them both with nightmare creatures. They’ll need to wrap up this rest stop ASAP though, as the Gang is hot on their tails looking for a pound of flesh—which is a lethal amount when you’re a tween!

I am so happy we get a little more time with the "fun sons". I think Peter Tomasi is trying to have as much fun as possible with them while he can, having them tangential touch as much of the DCU as he can. We saw The Gang is kid versions of an Injustice Gang. Now 'Planet of Mystery'? Perhaps a gag on 'House of Mystery'? Will we see a Kid Cain?

written by GEOFF JOHNS
art and cover by GARY FRANK
variant cover by GARY FRANK

The critical and commercial hit series by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank continues following the shocking revelations of last issue. As the truth behind Dr. Manhattan’s actions against the DC Universe are revealed, Ozymandias turns to the only being who can stop him: Superman.

Remember when DC said Doomsday Clock was, at its heart, a Superman story?

Well after six issues and many many months, we finally get a mention of the Big Red S.

Will Superman's optimism squelch Manhattan's machinations?

art and cover by LIAM SHARP
variant cover by FRANK QUITELY

Superstar writer Grant Morrison (Batman, All-Star Superman) returns to DC alongside red-hot artist Liam Sharp (The Brave AND the Bold, Wonder Woman) to launch a new, ongoing series: THE GREEN LANTERN! In this debut issue, when Earth’s space cop, Hal Jordan, encounters an alien hiding in plain sight, it sets off a chain of events that rocks the Green Lantern Corps—and quite possibly the Multiverse at large—to its very core. There’s an inter-galactic conspiracy afoot, as well as a traitor in the GL Corps’ ranks, so strap in for more mind-bending adventures in this masterpiece in the making.

Okay, it isn't super-related.

But it's freaking Grant Morrison! On Green Lantern! Writing straight up science fiction cop stories! With Liam Sharp art!!

Yeah ... I'm in.

Call me a Morrison fanboy, a  Morrison acolyte, or even a Morrison sycophant! Call me whatever you want. I love his stuff.

What grabbed you?


Anonymous said...

SG's covers are gorgeous.

Seeing Amanda Conner drawing Kara, though, makes me long for another PG book. Unfortunately I'd not be surprised if DC has decided they don't need an alternate Supergirl.

Anyway... Supergirl bar-hopping? And Ambush Bug? I so want to read that.

AC and SM sound interesting. It's said Bendis is better at level-street stuff, so maybe it's because that Action sounds more interesting. No matter what, I'm glad to see someone tackling BOTH sides of Superman. You can't ignore the Midwestern journalist OR the immigrant alien.

"There, Superboy deals with Red Kryptonite exposure, which throws his powers out of whack"

Tomasi remembers Red-K is supposed to make whacky thing happen? I'm impressed.

"Will Superman's optimism squelch Manhattan's machinations?"

Well, maybe we'll finally find out what is happening.

As long as DC ends up with everyone aware of the Multiverse and of their Earth-One, New Earth... selves' memories I'll be happy.

"Call me a Morrison fanboy, a Morrison acolyte, or even a Morrison sycophant! Call me whatever you want."


Morrison fanboy. Morrison acolyte. Morrison sycophant. Whatever you want.

Happy now? :)

Now seriously, Morrison is very hit-or-miss to me. But I'm glad that Hal Jordan is getting a bit of love.

Anonymous said...

(Tried to post from phone many hours ago, clicked a "Preview" button which didn't seem to work, clicked Publish and, sob, my post disappeared. Yikes. I'll try again.)

I think the two Supergirl #24 covers look great in contrast to each other - one dominant yellow and the other really really blue (blue Krypto, blue rocks) and shades of red (purple sky, capes, orange rocks, orange DC logo). Both covers are great - no Dodson cover which means it looks different than the one cover I claim the Dodsons draw almost 100% of the time with small variations. (Character in vertical flight with one leg bent forward.)

Krypto is in some distress in the Connor cover.

Supergirl Matrix had a silly encounter with Ambush Bug in Convergence: Supergirl Matrix. A controversial issue somewhere between mystifying and hated by just about everyone.

But I liked it - I thought it was a very funny over-the-top parody of the ridiculous and terrible Luthor/Matrix one-year abusive relationship story line. But we can debate that some other time, or if someone is interested in exchanging thoughts on that.

Anonymous said...

Matrix - Luthor wasn't a bad idea per se, it was drawn out over a year though in such a fashion as to really make Mae look like a credulous bimbo, in the end it was a huge step down for the character and she never recovered IMHO. But then, in the 1990's DC's Superman books all had long drawn out padded plot line that should have been disposed of in three or four issues...

As I recall Supergirl had to do some bar hopping in the Waid run on the Brave and the Bold in order to follow Hal Jordan to...Rann? Thanagar? Barsoom? Some damn place, she eventually tricked Lobo into being her Uber...BTW someday can we get Mark Waid to do some more Supergirl stories he has the touch I'm telling ya.


Anonymous said...

"But then, in the 1990's DC's Superman books all had long drawn out padded plot line that should have been disposed of in three or four issues..."

Quiet! You'll burst the bubble of the "The Triangle Era was flawless and Superman's greatest era, and it was thanks to throwing the Silver Age crawp away" crowd!

"As I recall Supergirl had to do some bar hopping in the Waid run on the Brave and the Bold in order to follow Hal Jordan to...Rann? Thanagar? Barsoom?"

Rann. I read "The Lords of Luck" recently. And man, I also want to see Mark Waid writing more Supergirl.

Anj said...

Thanks for comments!

I definitely reviewed the Convergence mini here when it happened.

I am almost positive that I reviewed (at least in passing) the B&B.

Stern definitely 'saved' Matrix ... although it took him a while.

Martin Gray said...

Yeah, I reviewed Supergirl: Convergence too, I definitely did not hate it!

You're spot on about the House of Mystery and Super Sons, Anj - that's a direct homage to HoM #174 (See also : DC Limited Collectors' Edition #23, Elvira's HoM #1, Brave & Bold #93 and Justice League dark #10 - there's a nice blog piece on them here:

Anj said...

Thanks for link Mart!