This weeks biggest new release is sitting pretty at the top of the blog, as Star Trek: Picard: Countdown (Mike Johnson, Kirsten Beyer, Angel Hernandez) gives us the beginning of the story that takes Star Fleet’s most decorated and respected Admiral from the deck of the Enterprise to a vineyard and… retirement?
You can take a trip down a nostalgic lane this week – if you dare – as Goosebumps: Horrors of the Witch House (Tipton, Smith, Fenoglio) is released, while Killadelphia #1 (Rodney Barnes, Jason Shawn Alexander) is the tale of a small-town cop returning to the big city to bury his famous detective father, and discovering corruption, poverty, unemployment, brutality… and vampires.
The preview pitch for Space Riders: Vortex of Darkness #1(Carlos Giffoni, Alexis Ziritt) says “It’s been twenty years since the riders defeated the DESTROYER GOD OF EVIL and saved the galaxy. But when THE MOTHER OF ALL EVIL GODS appears and threatens to take control of every dimension and every strain of possible reality, the now cybernetically-enhanced ex-riders will come together and travel into her mind to ASSASSINATE HER SOUL!” and honestly I could not top that if I tried.
The Last Stop #1 (Trey Walker (A) Hoyt Silva) takes a look at a terminally ill superhero in a world with few powered individuals left, who thinks he has an easy answer to his problems until his former arch-nemesis returns, while on a considerably lighter note, Rarity tries to visit three parties in three towns – with reliably disastrous consequences – in My Little Pony: Holiday Special (James Asmus, Trish Forstner, Andy Price)
Trade-wise the indies are taking us into some strange places this week, starting off with Come Into Me (Zac Thompson, Lonnie Nadler, Piotr Kowalski), a book that takes the idea of being able to have two minds in one body, and takes a deep look at what could possibly go wrong wit trusting untested technology too much. Collected in English for the first time, Cromwell Stone (Andreas) takes its titular hero on a journey to undercover the secrets of a mysterious sea journey that had few survivors – who are starting is disappear in strange circumstances.
If you are feeling flush or want to get someone (say, for example, me) a special Christmas gift, you couldn’t go far wrong with The Umbrella Academy: Dallas Library Edition volume 2 hardcover (Gerard Way Gabriel Ba) which reprints the 2009 limited edition collection of the complete second series, Dallas, with the short story “Anywhere but Here” and an expanded 36-page sketchbook featuring work by Way, Bá, designer Tony Ong, and Superman’s pal Jim Lee.
Snap Flash Hustle (Pat Shand (A) Emily Pearson) is a smart and stylish look at surviving in the world of insta-models and influencers, and how to drag yourself to the top of the pile by any means necessary – legal or otherwise. Set in the Mignola-verse (aka the world of Hellboy), Witchfinder: Reign of Darkness (Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson, Christopher Mitten) is a new take on the tale of Jack the Ripper, with an occult bent, that brings back a popular character, the American occult adventurer Sarah Jewel.
This weeks also sees the English language release of Matteo vol. 2 (Jean-Pierre Gibrat), the second part of the epic, continent spanning tale of the son of a Spanish anarchist. There is also Wage Slaves (Daria Bogdanska), an autobiographic graphic novel about the creators struggles to find work whilst at art school in Malmö.
On a more obscure note this week is the publication of Deconstructing The Incal (Christophe Quillien, Jean Annestay, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Moebius), a hardcover books that takes a vety deep dive in to the best-selling sci-fi graphic novel The Incal and the greater Jodoverse, this encyclopedic reference book, is packed with fascinating insights from The Incal‘s creators, Jodorowsky and Moebius, alongside revealing text, and rare and unseen preliminary illustrations. Which coincides nicely with a new hardcover version of The Incal (Alejandro Jodorowsky, Moebius), which recounts the trials and tribulations of lowly detective John Difool as he searches for the precious and coveted Incal.
Fans of Junji Ito are also in for a treat this week, with multiple books hitting shelves: Fragments of Horror is a collection of short horror stories from the manga legend, Shiver contains nine short stories selected by the man himself, Frankenstein is a retelling of the classic Mary Shelley novella, produced here in hardcover with some extra bonus spookiness to boot, and GYO is a seaside tale that will take you in to the depths, where something is lurking… Tomie is a femme fatale with a penchant for murderous partners and a dark secret, while Uzumaki is a tale of a cursed town haunted not by a person or being but by a pattern: uzumaki, the spiral, the hypnotic secret shape of the world. Warning – these books are not for younger readers!
This week also sees the release of Dungeons and Dragons: Dungeons & Tombs – Young Adventurers Guide, an illustrated guide for new players on who to combat some of the trickier traps and tombs that your DM might throw at you. Plus there is a slipcase edition collecting the three manga volumes of Sherlock: Season One (Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat, Steve Thompson, Jay)
It looks like we have reached the end of one event, in that Scream: Curse of Carnage (Clay McLeod Chapman, Chris Mooneyham) is billed as a new on-going series rising from the ashes of the Absolute Carnage event, as the original symbiotes daughter tries to stake her claim on New York City. But there might just be some web-slinging heroes who have other ideas…
The latest stage of the Marvel 80th anniversary celebrations continue with two titles this week, Punisher 2099 #1 (Lonnie Nadler, Zac Thompson, Matt Horak) asks who will look after the vulnerable inhabitants of Nueva York, while Conan 2099 #1 (Gerry Duggan, Roge Antonia) which places the barbarian king in the far flung future and well out of his comfort zone. Speaking of zones, the Richards family are seeing some of Reed’s experiments come to roost as they go on a new adventure in Fantastic Four: Negative Zone #1 (Mike Carey, Ryan North, Stefano Caselli, Steve Uy)
There are some superstar names – both character and creator – hitting the shelves in trade form from Marvel this week as Fearless (Seanan McGuire, Leah Williams, Claire Roe) gets collected, featuring stories about Storm, Captain Marvel, Millie the Model and more! Meanwhile Marvel Action Classics: Ant-Man #1(Fred Van Lente, Todd DeZago, Matteo Lolli, Derec Aucoin) sees Hank Pym recruit an army of ants (no surprises there folks) to try and stop the takeover of the world!
Trade wise you can pick up Moon Knight (Jeff Lemire, Greg Smallwood) volumes 1 and 2, telling the tale of Marc Spector, who wields the power of Konshu – or does he, as he wakes up powerless in a mental institution and begins to questions his life and memories…
Sticking with big trades, Thanos; Zero Sanctuary (Tini Howard, Ariel Olivetti) looks at what kind of a dad the Mad Titan was, showing us the upbringing that led his adopted daughter to commit patricide!
DC have just two new titles for us this week, with Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Infinite Crisis #1 (James TynionIV, Aaron Lopresti, Matt Ryan) asking what would happen if Blue Beetle had survived – and thrived – the world ending event. Firm fan favourite John Constantine: Hellblazer #1 (Si Spurrier, Aaron Campbell ) burns brightly in his new on-going series, as he returns to London to discover that bad things are happening in his old stomping grounds – things worse than the Hellblazer being back in town!