What's happened to Monday?!

*It'd probably be handier to move these features up, if I'm going to be posting in the evening, huh?


Batman #666

Chance in Hell (new Gilbert Hernandez graphic novel - very nice)


Column #2: Wish You Were Here

short reviews: superheroes (Black Summer #1, The Immortal Iron Fist #7, All Star Batman and Robin, the Boy Wonder #6)

short reviews: women in love with hairy things (Tank Girl: The Gifting #2, Multiple Warheads #1)

short reviews: belly-quaking surprises (Warren Ellis' Crécy, Speak of the Devil #1)

all at The Savage Critics!

*Smaller this week. Your wallet will coo.


Johnny Ryan’s XXX Scumbag Party: A new collection of gentle whimsies from the Nickelodeon Magazine contributor, originally published as Angry Youth Comix #6-10, with some extra odds and ends tossed in. Gives a nice summary of Ryan's range, with two-page stories and gag panels rubbing up against longer pieces. In b&w and color, $18.95 from Fantagraphics.

Uptight #2: And, from the same publisher, we've got the next low-priced ($2.50) issue of Jordan Crane's one-man anthology, featuring a new chapter of the title's ongoing serial, a new story featuring characters from Crane's The Clouds Above, and a third, unrelated short. Only 20 pages in total, and the stories will probably run onto the back cover - kind of a reverse Ignatz, and a noble effort. Crane is generally worth reading, regardless of format.

Goodnight, Irene: I don't know a damn thing about this, save that it's a new, $14.95 Last Gasp collection of Carol Lay's romance comic parodies from her old 1987-91 Fantagraphics/Rip Off Press series Good Girls. But Lay is an energetic cartoonist with fine humor instincts, and the preview art looks neat.

The Naked Artist: Comic Book Legends: Your very odd publication for the week - a 128-page, $11.95 Moonstone Books production, written by no less than Bryan Talbot, devoted entirely to sharing catchy anecdotes about your favorite comics professionals. Illustrations by Hunt Emerson. Hell, I'll flip through it if it's on the stands.

Mushishi Vol. 2: Oh yeah, this one's now on the Del Rey slow train of two volumes per year, knocked back from its original quarterly schedule. The Japanese collections are already up to vol. 8, so it's not like there's a lack of material out there... something tells me the English-language vol. 1 didn't light the charts on fire. That's too bad, because this is a damned inventive parade of natural wonders and dangers and the magic of perception, neatly packed into self-contained tales. The first R1 dvd volume of the much-acclaimed, extremely faithful television anime adaptation (titled Mushi-Shi) is also out this week, so maybe a wider audience awaits there.

Eden: It’s an Endless World! Vol. 8: Not dead yet. Since I ought to put something else in this space, I'll note that some stores seem to think they're getting the new Golgo 13 and The Drifting Classroom volumes this week, although neither are on Diamond's list. Keep an eye out.

Gødland: Celestial Edition: Just a big ol' $34.99 hardcover, collecting the first 12 issues with 40 pages of supplemental materials. No more, no less! Image also has the first Elephantmen hardcover out for $24.99, scooping up issues #1-7.

Inanna’s Tears #1 (of 5): An Archaia Studios hardcopy edition of writer Rob Vollmar's and artist mpMann's Modern Tales web serial, set in ancient Sumer and exploring notions of religion and power. Check out this preview.

Garth Ennis’ Chronicles of Wormwood #6 (of 6): The world-breaking finale to Ennis' romp around Christianity. Laffs and God.

Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born #7 (of 7): Also ending, and just about on time! Or, at least close enough to on time that it counts as the same thing these days.

Wisdom: Rudiments of Wisdom: Oh, I liked this Marvel MAX miniseries when it was serialized, even though the MAX banner is pretty much a ploy to make everything more expensive, and there's an art team switch two chapters in that you'll regret by the end (both of these things were arguably necessary to keep the series afloat, mind you). But Paul Cornell's script is surprisingly deft in its explorations of British myth and culture, as confronted by people whose job it is to punch the bad parts into submission. Kind of a brainier, moodier younger cousin to Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E., very much overlooked during its initial release. If not this $21.99 collection, there's always the bargain bins...

World War Hulk #3 (of 5): In this issue, Hulk learns the value of arbitration as an efficient alternative to the costly 'smash' process of dispute resolution. But will Dr. Strange's cunning maneuver our poor hero into the unpredictable vapor realm of... mediation?! Insist on a binding contract, Hulk!

The Punisher MAX #50: Double-sized special issue, kicking off the new storyline, featuring the return of Barracuda, and sporting a rare feature for this series: special guest art for one chapter only! And it's Howard Chaykin, who's looking very much in his element. Interesting that this series would suddenly brush visual consistency away for a moment - I wonder if this storyline's regular artist (Goran Parlov) got caught up in the Barracuda spinoff miniseries he was drawing? I've always presumed that writer Garth Ennis works far enough ahead with his scripts that different art teams can work on different storylines at the same time, thus preventing delays or last-second switches... of course, the book's also never had a spinoff. Anyway, if any ongoing Marvel series has earned my trust, it's this one, and I'm hardly going to complain about the presence of Chaykin.

Hey: Chaykin's drawing Wolverine now?! And Blade cohort Marc Guggenheim is writing it as a follow-up to Civil War?? Man, since Wolverine's Civil War guest appearance in Blade involved the two of them teaming up to fight a vampire version of the Yellow Kid, I'm really hoping this new tale sees Logan tracking down one Augustus J. Mutt, true assassin of Captain America. It'll score better reviews than the last storyline...