Welcome to Can’t Wait for Comics, your guide to what comics are arriving in comic book stores, bookstores and on digital this week.
Check out a few highlights below, or visit Diamond’s website for this week’s almost complete list of new comics arriving in stores. You can visit Lunar Distribution’s home page to see DC’s releases, and the comiXology new releases page for what’s available digitally.
Batman: Fear State Alpha (DC, $4.99): DC’s next Batman event kicks off in earnest this week, as the Scarecrow and the Magistrate’s reign of terror over Gotham City begins.
“I first pitched Fear State as a bit of a Cyberpunk Horror event, starring The Scarecrow, but it’s evolved into a lot more than that over the last few months,” writer James Tynion IV said in his most recent newsletter. “And it’s evolved with the help of the best writers and artists in comics. If you’ve fallen behind, this is the moment to catch up on Catwoman, Nightwing, Harley Quinn and Detective Comics, so you can get the full impact of the Fear State event.”
Tynion is joined by artist Riccardo Federici for the kick-off, and then, like he said, it’ll branch out into all the Gotham titles over the next few months.
Aquaman 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1 (DC, $9.99): Aquaman is the latest DC character to celebrate his 80th birthday with an oversized anthology. Party guests for the king of the seven seas include Dan Jurgens, Geoff Johns, Brandon Thomas, Chuck Brown, Stephanie Phillips, Michael Moreci, Marguerite Bennett, Dan Watters, Jeff Parker, Becky Cloonan, Francis Manapul, Steve Epting, Paul Pelletier, Valentine de Landro, Hendry Prasetya, Pop Mhan, Trungles, Miguel Mendonça and Evan “Doc” Shaner
Harley Quinn: The Animated Series: The Eat. Bang! Kill. Tour #1 (DC, $3.99): In the spirit (maybe?) of the Batman Adventures titles, which are based on Batman: The Animated Series, comes Harley Quinn: The Animated Series-The Eat, Bang. Kill. Tour #1. It’s by the inspired creative team of Tee Franklin and Max Sarin, as Harley and Ivy hit the road after Poison Ivy dumps Kite Man at the altar.
Update: Despite being on comiXology’s list for this week, this one doesn’t actually come out yet.
Update #2: Sometimes there are moving targets … comiXology released this one today, rather than yesterday, and it looks like print copies won’t arrive until Sept. 14.
Harley Quinn Annual #1 (DC, $5.99): Your second dose of Harley Quinn — well, third, if we’re assuming she’s in Fear State Alpha, which is probably a safe bet since she’s on the cover — is this annual by Stephanie Phillips, Darko Lafuente, Jon Sommariva and Marco Failla. It introduces Keepsake, a new villain who decides he wants Harley to be his partner, so he kidnaps her — leaving her pal Kevin and Solomon Grundy to try and find her.
Midnighter Annual #1 (DC, $5.99): Midnighter breaks out of his back-up status in Action Comics to headline an annual that concludes the story Becky Cloonan and Michael Conrad have been telling since Future State: Superman: Worlds of War. It involves time travel, an evil industrialist and a robotic skull.
Demon Days: Cursed Web (Marvel, $4.99): Peach Momoko’s re-imagining of the Marvel Universe continues in her series of one-shots; this issue will again feature Mariko, as well as Momoko’s interpretations of Sabretooth and Mystique.
Dark Ages #1 (Marvel, $4.99): Tom Taylor and Iban Coello’s miniseries about a Marvel Universe plunged into darkness sees the light of day this week. The six-issue miniseries will feature the Avengers, the X-Men, Spider-Man, the Watcher and more, as they fail to stop a huge threat to the Marvel Universe. This issue, I’m guessing, sets up the story and setting that’ll play out in the rest of the series.
Last Annihilation: Wiccan and Hulkling #1 (Marvel, $4.99): Marvel’s Last Annihilation crossover event continues with this one-shot featuring the breakout couple of last year’s Empyre event, Wiccan and Hulkling. The Young Avengers-couple-turned-interstellar-rulers have to split up to handle the magical invasion plaguing their empire, and Anthony Oliveira and Jan Bazaldua show us what each of them have been up to as they try to keep space safe from Planet Dormammu and his invading forces.
Sinister War #4 (Marvel, $4.99): Marvel’s Spider-Man crossover series comes to an end this week; so far this story has been less of the villain free-for-all I was hoping for and more of just a side story to what’s happening in the main Amazing Spider-Man title, like there wasn’t enough room for all of Peter Parker and Harry Osbourne’s exposition so hey, let’s do a miniseries.
Deadbox #1 (Vault Comics, $3.99): Mark Russell, Benjamin Tiesma, Vladimir Popov and Tim Daniel take us to the town of Lost Turkey for this new miniseries where a haunted DVD rental machine reveals the fates of the town’s citizens. If only they’d turned to streaming …
Almost American #1 (AfterShock Comics, $4.99): This new series by former Russian spy Janosh “Jan” Neumann, Ron Marz, Marco Castiello, Flavio Dispenza and Rus Wooton, tells the true story of how Neumann and his wife defected to the United States in 2008. “But instead of the American Dream, Janosh and Victorya Neumann found themselves caught up in red tape, bureaucracy and turf wars between the FBI and CIA – all while their past tries to kill them.”
Telepaths #1 (AWA, $3.99): J. Michael Straczynski and Steve Epting unite for a new miniseries about a world where 10 percent of the world’s population gain telepathic powers. The story follows a wrongly convicted prisoner who becomes the leader of other telepaths “trying to escape a world in which their powers will make them targets.”
Beauty: All Good Things (Image Comics, $4.99): After a two-year hiatus, Jeremy Haun and Jason Hurley return to the world of Beauty to wrap up the story they told over almost 30 issues. They are joined for the finale by artist Matthew Dow Smith, and I believe Haun is doing some interior artwork as well.
Commanders in Crisis #12 (Image Comics, $3.99): Steve Orlando, L.A. Thornhill and Davide Tinto wrap up their creator-owned miniseries about a group of heroes — all the last heroes from their respective universes — as the fate of all existence is put in the hands of their adoptive world’s population.
Eighty Days (BOOM! Studios, $29.99): This graphic novel, beautifully written and drawn by A.C. Esguerra, is about a pilot, Jay, who crosses paths with a mysterious thief named Fix — leading him into a confrontation with the aviation guild “to which Jay owes his very being.”
Barnstormers (Insight Kids, $14.99): Kenny Porter and Renny Castellani’s new graphic novel, which I believe first was serialized through via comiXology Submit, is also about planes and pilots. This one, though, is about two pilots who try to make money hunting monsters, but unfortunately, they’re pretty bad at it. It’s a fun adventure comic with some cool monster designs, and it’s worth checking out.
Bright Family (Andrews McMeel, $9.99): When two kids lose their parents to a dimensional portal, they set out to track them down wherever they might be in the multiverse. Luckily they inherited their mom and dad’s smarts and bravery, plus they have a robot nanny to help them along. Matthew Cody and Derick Brooks bring Nia and Jayden’s adventures to life in this new graphic novel.
What If? Omnibus (Marvel, $100): If you’ve been enjoying the What If series on Disney+ and you haven’t seen the originals, you may want to check out this new Omnibus that collects more than 20 issues of the original series. See the Hulk with Bruce Banner’s brain (Ummm …), Jane Foster become Thor (Wait …), Spider-Man join the Fantastic Four (What the …?) and other stories that would never happen in the regular Marvel Universe. This includes issues #1-22 of the original series, minus the one about Shang-Chi remaining loyal to his dad, who used to be Fu Manchu before Marvel lost the license to using him. But who would ever believe Shang-Chi would go into the family business anyway? (Don’t answer that).