The Smash Pages crew is back again with a look at what’s arriving in comic shops, bookstores and on digital this week.
If you’re wondering what to get this week, check out a few recommendations below. You can check the Comic List page to see what’s arriving in your local shop, and the comiXology new releases page for what’s available digitally. As always, you should check with your local shop on their hours, curbside pick-up and mask restrictions, due to COVID-19. Stay safe out there.
Tom Taylor is really making me care about the Suicide Squad more than I ever have since Ostrander’s run way back when, even though he’s messing with one of my all-time favorite characters in the book. In Suicide Squad #7 it looks like Taylor, Redondo, and team are focusing on Deadshot, who has always been a fascinating character. This is a must-read DC book.
I’m also really looking forward to the continuation of the X-Men line of books with the new X-Factor #1, Cable #2 and X-Men #10, which I’ve been patiently waiting for like a good Shane during the COVID-19 delays, thank you very much. I don’t WANT to like young Cable, but damn if they aren’t doing a good job of making me do it anyway. I find the premise for X-Factor, investigating mutant deaths to make sure they are really dead in order to revive them, really fascinating. While over in X-Men, the Summers family deal with the Cotati from Empyre encroaching on their area of the moon. Good stuff!
The whole Iron Man 2020 event has been hit and miss with me, but at this point I’m invested so I want to see it through. I really really like the ideas presented, but the execution and particularly the tone of the story has been way off. AI’s are supposed to be fighting for their rights, but their deaths have for the most part been played for laughs. Pete Wood’s style fits the series, but the art on a lot of the other titles doesn’t, so I don’t quite get what this event is trying to do. That said, I want them to pull this off, but right now it just seems like a stop gap to the new series. I hope they prove me wrong. I’ll be picking up Iron Man 2020 #5 of 6 to find out.
I might pick up Hedra by Jesse Lonergan too, just based off its solicit that says “echoes of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Flash Gordon, Chris Ware and Moebius,” but that Warren Ellis pull quote on the solicit might not be doing it any favors right now.
Finally, ever since Zero, I’ve been a big fan of Ales Kot’s work and his new book Lost Soldiers with Luca Casalanguida, Heather Moore, and Image Comics looks amazing. The solicit doesn’t really tell you much about the book, just that it’s three soldiers 40 years after the Vietnam War, but with Ales’ track record, I’m good going in blind.
I honestly don’t remember the last time we had a new issue of the award-winning, always awesome, joy-to-read Bandette by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover, but they are always welcome on my iPad. It appears that this comic is the sole survivor of the Monkeybrain imprint, that wonderful line of affordable digital comics that also included Edison Rex, Kinski, Masks & Mobsters and several other titles. I’m glad this one at least is still around and has new issues coming out, though somewhat irregularly.
This week brings the second issue of Chris Condon and Jacob Phillips’ That Texas Blood. While the first issue was a very moody, Texas-fried done-in-one issue, this one kicks off a five-part story about a writer returning to the Texas town where he grew up after the death of his brother. I suspect foul play …
On lighter note, Archie is back this week, after a brief hiatus because of the pandemic. This issue continues the Katy Keene/New York storyline, which started before the plug was pulled on Katy’s TV show.
The Cloven is the first of three books by Garth Stein, who you know from The Art of Racing in the Rain and other novels, and Matthew Southworth, co-creator of Stumptown. This is such a beautiful book. I’ve read it, and I’d recommend buying a physical copy rather than downloading. Southworth’s art is incredible, and it’s something you’ll want to enjoy and then have on your shelf.
Finally, Gipi has a new book coming out from Fantagraphics this week as well. If you aren’t familiar with Gipi, now’s your chance — he’s an incredible Italian cartoonist who is known for the books The Innocents and Notes for a War Story. In this one, he tells the story of two generations — a successful writer whose family leaves him and the writer’s great-grandfather, who fought in the First World War.