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The Weekly Haul – Week of April 20, 2016 (new stuff)

This week ended up being a huge week for new comics stuff…far bigger than I’d had any intention or inkling before mid-day.

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DC‘s obviously getting back into my good graces (or at least attention) based on this week’s stuff. A JLA book for my $1-or-under/promo-priced pulls; Legends of Tomorrow since I enjoyed the first issue enough; Superman: Lois and Clark (seems to be prelude to stuff on a much larger scale than I’d imagined when the title started). Action Comics because I’m OCD and am interested in seeing what DOES actually happen with the New 52 Superman as well as sincerely wanting to ‘support’ an outwardly-indicated (aka “triangle numbering”) system of continuity in Super-books. And then Power Man and Iron Fist cuz ok, I’m a sucker.

Of course, I need to figure out and then track down whatever would be “triangle number” #2, as I have 1 and this is 3…where the heck is 2?!?

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Scored the two Essentials volumes from a $3 box…figuered hey, 25% cheaper than a single issue of a new Marvel comic…you betcha! I believe the X-Men one is all-new to me. The Classic X-Men is a replacement copy so I’ll have 2 of 3 volumes in the same trade dress instead of 3 volumes and 3 different trade dress styles.

And for the price of any of the recent DC #50s (or the Barnes & Noble/BaM! standard price of most issues) got a second print of Dark Knight Returns #2 (Dark Knight Triumphant)!

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And finally (of new stuff), the book I’ve been waiting for since last August finally came out (in a new/second printing), but now being ‘current’ and NOT “out of print” it was discounted significantly through instocktrades and thus “affordable” in a way that cover price–for me–is not.

I’d ordered this last week and it arrived today, neatly coinciding with New Comic Day.

Second print? Looks fine to me! Looks like it’ll match the Companion volume? That’s what I wanted. Saved nearly $60 off cover price? I’m great with that!

Legends of Tomorrow #1 [Review]

legendsoftomorrow0001Cover Art: Aaron Lopresti with Chris Sotomayor
Published by: DC Comics
Cover Date: May 2016
Cover Price: $7.99

I hadn’t paid attention to this originally when I saw it solicited…I noticed the “title” and chalked it up as yet another soon-to-be-failed tv-tie-in of near-zero consequence, at least to me and my following the “regular” continuity of DC stuff. I’m not sure if the tv show had premiered yet or was just about to, but I had no interest in yet another digital-first thing seeing print, and thus ignored it. Then recently there was an ad for it that caught my attention, and left me curious. I was a bit put off learning the thing would be $7.99…even for a double-length issue, being frustrated with $3.99 price points, essentially $8 seemed a bit MUCH for just one issue of something I wasn’t overly familiar with. Still, I resolved to wait and see, not swearing to avoid the book but not intending absolutely to buy it, either. When it came out last week, it was a small week for me, so the $8 wasn’t terribly steep…plus the issue’s squarebound with the title on the spine, so it can actually go on a shelf like a mini tpb, and not simply disappear into a box.

While I’d expected a “lead” story and the others to essentially be “backup” features…if I counted correctly, we have 4 20-page stories in this issue, giving the thing excellent “value” for the content, if one is interested in or doesn’t mind what’s included (vs. say, wishing it was Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, or Green Lantern content).

Firestorm – United We Fall part 1
Writer: Gerry Conway
Penciller: Eduardo Pansica
Inker: Rob Hunter
Letterer: Corey Breen
Editor: Jessica Chen

I remember checking out Firestorm: The Nuclear Men title at the launch of the New 52, and it didn’t hold me enough to stick with it past a few months. I’ve never been a huge Firestorm fan, but I’d been loosely aware of the character at points–though mostly it was after the introduction of Jason as the new Firestorm and the apparent demise of Ronnie in Identity Crisis that the character was fully on my radar; and then the Deathstorm stuff around Blackest Night. Now there’s been a fair bit on the Flash tv show and Legends of Tomorrow, so this “lead” story was a good enticement for me to buy the issue.

We open on Ronnie and Jason testing their powers, with something going on with them, and then the two split, and we get a glimpse into their personal lives–individually, and at school with a mutual friend. We also have the introduction of a new/old villain, and come to see that there is something up with Jason, and with the Firestorm Matrix in general, which leads to a cliffhanger promising imminent destruction.

In addition to the above preamble, I think another draw to THIS take on Firestorm is that it’s written by the character’s co-creator, Gerry Conway…with the added element that I’ve attended a panel where he spoke several years ago, so there’s that quasi-personal-ish connection for me.

I like that the Jason/Ronnie mix has not been scrapped, and that along with both of them we also still have Professor Stein…indicating, for my limited experience with the character, a certain mix of original/classic and newer character elements and an observance of history for the characters. Yet, this also reads as a first issue, showing us bits of stuff with Firestorm and that it requires two people, and there’s this “matrix” thing that allows them to join AS (a) Firestorm; We’re “introduced to” Ronnie and Jason and see a bit about them–Ronnie’s into sports, Jason’s more into academics; We see a bit of “supporting cast” in Stein as well as the boys’ mutual friend; as well as a bit of rivalry between them. I’m familiar enough to simply enjoy the re-introduction/”confirmation” of stuff I figured I knew, and I’m interested in where this story goes.

I’m not sure if I’ve seen Pansica‘s art before or not…but I had no real expectation going into this. I was not disappointed by the art…it’s good, and worked for the story, avoiding random weirdness that’d put me off or have me wondering at anatomy and such; and I was never left trying to figure out WHAT happened or was going on. It’s a good match for the story itself.

I’m not sure exactly how this would rate for me as a first issue wholly on its own…though I probably would not have bought a Firestorm #1. But this was only the first quarter of the issue purchased…

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The Weekly Haul – Week of March 16, 2016

Not much to show off this week–though I did raid some quarter-bins and found some Firestorm and DuckTales stuff. Just the new stuff for tonight!

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The IDW Greatest Hits and the DC Comics Essentials issues are $1 comics, pulled for my standing “$1 or less promo-priced stuff.” I enjoyed the first issue of Power Man and Iron Fist enough to get this second issue. While it’s enjoyable enough, I’m not sure if I’ll last even the entire first arc…but as long as the issues continue to come out on otherwise relatively light weeks and Marvel hasn’t done anything to overly tick me off on some “principle” or another, I’ll take it issue by issue when I see it on the rack.

And seeing/holding the issue (literally weighing it as I considered), I decided the $7.99 for Legends of Tomorrow #1 was worthwhile as a first issue. Once I read it I’ll decide if I’ll continue with subsequent issues, probably taking it on a month to month basis. But so far, the Firestorm story was 20 pages, and I’m pretty sure the Metamorpho one is close…not sure about the other two; but as a squarebound thing with the title/number on the spine, it’s a shelf-ready thing, and if it packs two full-length features plus a couple more, it’ll at least “match” 20-page $3.99 comics and prove the better value.

I’m not sure if they’re late or just not stocked where I’ve looked, but I’m also rather interested in IDW‘s Deviations issues…I forgot to check if the TMNT one was ordered under my TMNT pull request, but absolutely want that if no others.

It’s nice to hit two comic shops and walk away with a handful of new issues and a stack of 1980s’ stuff for about–or less–than the price of only several more current comics. And looking here…ignore the $1 “promo-priced” issues, and the only new stuff is a thick anthology book from DC that I’m trying, and only the second issue of a new Marvel book that however “fun” it is I probably wouldn’t miss if I did skip it…while I’m moving more and more to buying back issues–random catch-my-attention and specific issues–and cheap/clearance/etc. collected volumes, most of which reprint material from the 1990s.

But that’ll probably be a topic for another post…

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