FPI Most Wanted: Coming This Month – July 2016
Here’s what the FPI Blog team are looking forward to this month… as usual, schedules can always slip, but this is what we reckon is worth spending your hard earned cash on in July…..
Wild’s End: The Enemy Within by Dan Abnett and INJ Culbard (Boom! Studios)
Missed this one when it came out in comic form, but one I’ve always made a note to pick up in collection. Think of it as a bit sci-fi in a War Of The Worlds style mashed up with Wind In The Willows. All rather spectacularly well done as well.
Injection Volume 2 by Warren Ellis, Declan Shalvey (Image)
Second volume of Ellis and Shalvey’s excellent series that’s absolutely prototypical Ellis fare, and just as damn good as ever. A group of five very strange people deal with all the weirdness of the world.
Bone: Coda 25th Anniversary Special by Jeff Smith (Cartoon Books)
An all-new Bone story.. that’s really all you need to know about this one. It’s 25 years since the very first Bone comic, and Jeff Smith returns with this extra special, but completely superfluous tale of the Bone cousins. Very special indeed.
Neat Stuff Hardcover Boxed Set by Peter Bagge (Fantagraphics)
Before he did the brilliant Hate, Peter Bagge was responsible for Neat Stuff, where we first met Buddy Bradley et al. Now Fantagraphics collects the entire Neat Stuff series in a deluxe two volume set. Bloody brilliant.
Something New: Tales From A Makeshift Bride by Lucy Knisley (First Second)
A while ago, Lucy Knisley shared the heart-warming tale “A Light That Never Goes Out” about a love affair that didn’t work, until it did. This latest graphic novel from Knisley is the tale of what came later, a DIY wedding and all the stresses and joys that come with the happy day. It will be wonderful.
Bunny Vs Monkey Book 3 by Jamie Smart (DF Books/Phoenix)
Jamie Smart’s manic series chronicling the trials and tribulations of a group of woodland creatures is a frequent highlight of The Phoenix Comic. I’ve loved it since it all began, full of the most ridiculous gags, clever cartooning and the occasional moment of heartbreak. Brilliant and laugh out loud funny.
Yuge!: 30 Years of Doonesbury on Trump by Gary Trudeau (Andrews McMeel)
Yes, it’s a terrifying prospect, President Trump… that should chill your heart and make you wake in a cold sweat in the middle of the night. And over the years, Trump’s been a frequent guest in the world of Doonesbury, so it’s time to collect all those strips together to fully portray the horror that might yet come to pass.
Absolute Preacher Volume 1 Hardcover, Garth Ennis, Steve Dillon, DC/Vertigo
One of the most enjoyable and important comics series of the last twenty years finally gets the Absolute treatment (just as the TV adaptation kicks off this spring). Morality, theology, sex, drugs, blasphemy, violence, romance, the ghost of John Wayne, a search for god (to give him a good hiding for not doing right by his Creation) and of course, Arseface. It’s a love story, it’s a buddy movie, it’s a road trip, it’s a Western, a horror, a fantasy. Ennis’ masterpiece, now in that oversized deluxe Absolute edition so you can enjoy Steve Dillon’s sharp, clear-line influenced art. Must have.
DC Comics : Bombshells Volume 2 – Allies, Marguerite Bennett, Marguerite Sauvage, et al, DC
I went into this series not expecting much – a WWII pinup style look to DC’s heroines – and it has turned out to be one of the most delightful reads of the last few months, a female-centric alternative take on WWII and reworking famous DC heroines to fight the good fight in a very interesting way. Bennett’s take on Wonder Woman in particular is superb, a near perfect mix of a determined warrior of steel defending those in need but infused with a strong sense of compassion.
Red Thorn Volume 1 : Glasgow Kiss, David Baillie, Megan Hetrick, DC/Vertigo
Part of a major new push of fresh Vertigo series, this marks the DC debut of one of our better UK small press stalwarts, David Baillie (following his own comics to 2000 AD to DC, still an established route for Brit talent), so I was always going to be interested in it, and with much of this mixture of real and imagined Celtic fantasy slammed into the real world of the city of my birth, Glasgow (Hetrick creates some great city scenes, including clever use of the city’s vast Necropolis) I couldn’t resist. You can read a guest Commentary about the series by David here on the blog.
Joe Golem, Occult Detective Volume 1 : Rat Catcher & Sunken Dead, Mike Mignola, Christopher Golden, Patric Reynolds, Dark Horse
I’d happily read pretty much anything Hellboy creator Mike Mignola puts out, and this is an interesting tale, mixing the Chandler-Hammett era gumshoe detective tale with the supernatural (and a hidden backstory) and then setting it in a drowned New York where people live in upper stories of buildings poking out of the waters.
Velvet Volume 3, Ed Brubaker, Steve Epting, Image
Brubaker is always a writer to watch, but he’s seriously impressed me with his take on the superspy genre, following Velvet Templeton, the older woman who most of the cocky young agents saw as the secretary at the intelligence agency, unaware she had previously not only been a field agent, but a better agent than any of them. Forced onto the run after uncovering a conspiracy within her own department this series has all the classic 60s/70s superspy tropes – international travel, sex, danger, glamour – but from a female perspective and interestingly also grounding those more fantastical elements with some real-word gravitas. Brilliantly compelling.
Monstress Volume 1, Marjorie Liu, Sana Takeda, Image
Another very female-lead heavy title, Liu and Takeda’s fantasy is an intoxicating mixture of beautiful magical fantasy and sheer brutality, of astonishing wonders but horrible cruelties, and oh my four colour gods, Takeda’s artwork is simply glorious, the details just in some of the elaborate costumes alone are astonishing. You can read a review of the first issue here on the blog.
Bad Company : First Casualties, Peter Milligan, Jim McCarthy, Rufus Dayglo, Rebellion
Bad Company was one of the most compelling – and downright brutal – “future war” stories ever to come out of the mighty pages of 2000 AD, and this return to that universe is an interesting one, taking place in a veteran’s hospital years after the end of the vicious Krool War. The survivors of Bad Company are heroes, feted as anniversary of the victory approaches, but they are broken men, on medications, unable to deal with the regular world after what they saw and did during the war. And then there is a hint that the war and even the Krool were not what they were told. The story riffs cleverly on our own troubled world – the reasons given by governments to justify war and carnage, the effect is has even on those who come home seemingly intact – and it gives this a lot of bite.
Judge Dredd : The Cursed Earth Saga Uncensored Hardcover, John Wagner, Pat Mills, Mike McMahon, Brian Bolland, Rebellion
One of the earliest Dredd epics, arguably this was one of those long, multi-part sagas that cemented Dredd as Britain’s top comics character, and oh boy, look at the talent here, Brit Comics royalty, with Wagner and Mills on script duties and two of the definitive Dredd artists of all time, McMahon and Bolland, on art. With west coast Mega City Two falling to a deadly virus, MC-1 must get a vaccine there in time to save those left. But with the spaceport over-run by plague-men there’s only overland – two thousand miles of the radiated hell of the Cursed Earth, the atomic war wasteland between the mega cities. Muties, alien slavers, resurrected dinosaurs, Dredd and Spikes Harvey Rotten (“the greatest punk of all time”) fight their way across the Cursed Earth. The missing segments like the Burger Wars, deliciously biting satire on corporations, hasn’t been printed since it was in the comics, for fear of legal action, and this, decades on, is the first time they have all been included.
Wild’s End : The Enemy Within, Dan Abnett, INJ Culbard, Boom Studios,
Abnett and the brilliant Culbard return for a second helping of their excellent spin on HG Wells’ War of the Worlds (one of the most iconic of SF tales), with their anthropomorphic characters managing to flee the site of their village massacre and reach the military, but the authorities aren’t sure they believe them, and they seem ill-prepared to deal with the alien invasion when it confronts them. And then there may be more to the invasion than any of them thought…
Injection vol.2 by Warren Ellis and Declan Shalvey (Image Comics)
I’m trade waiting with this series as I like Ellis more as an overall storyteller or arc teller than individual issues! I love what he’s doing so far though; it echoes Planetary in idea and concept! Also Shalvey is delivering some of the best work of his life!
Snotgirl #1 by Bryan Lee O’Malley and Leslie hung (Image comics)
I really like O’Malley’s style of storytelling and I’m curious to see how he’ll work with a different artist! That and the series is called ‘Snotgirl’ –what’s not to love!
Silver Surfer #6 by Dan Slott and Michael Allred (Marvel)
I love oversized issues from great teams, so seeing Slott and Allred getting to work on a full one together is brilliant!!
Daredevil #9 by Charles Soule and Goran Sudzuka (Marvel)
Soule has been killing it on Daredevil- so I can’t wait to see what this next arc sets up! Sudzuka’s art also really suits the darker tone Soule has going in the book
Velvet vol.3 by Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting (Image)
I’ve been following the single issues of this, but the trades all look equally magnificent! Brubaker’s spy game is at its peak, with Epting matching him for style and wonderful delivery!
Nightwing Rebirth by Tim Seeley and Yanick Paquette (DC Comics)
BACK IN BLUE BABY!!! I love Dick Grayson, and especially love his Nightwing persona (like anyone who grew up in the 90’s) –I’m so happy to see him back in the Blue and can’t wait to see where this series goes after Grayson!
The Hellblazer by Simon Oliver and Moritat (DC Comics)
Moritat has been one of my favourite artists ever since I saw him on DDC’s First Wave: The Spirit series a few years ago- I am curious how him and Simon Oliver will interpret the street wise wizard and if they can break new ground with his stories!
Wonder Woman #2 by Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott (DC Comics)
The second of Ruicka’s alternating arcs start with this 2 and I’m stoked to see Rucka and Scott work together on the Amazon Warrior! This origin twist should be Awesome!!
July is not a popular month in European comics. France goes into a summer-long slumber, only to wake up again for the rentrée in September. Some publishers even don’t list any books a parraître after june. So, my choices are mostly from our trusted Previews…