Can’t Wait for Comics | ‘Beast World,’ ‘Gang War’ and more of this week’s comics

Check out new comics and graphic novels arriving this week by Tom Taylor, Ivan Reis, Dav Pilkey, Maria Llovet, Keanu Reeves, Mattson Tomlin, Rebekah Isaacs and more.

Welcome to Can’t Wait for Comics, your guide to what comics are arriving in comic book stores, bookstores and on digital. Both Marvel and DC have new crossovers kicking off this week, while Dav Pilkey returns with another session of Cat Kid Comics Club. Maria Llovet is back with a new miniseries, while an unexpected movie tie-in arrives.

I’ve pulled out some of the highlights below, but for the complete list of everything you might find at your local comic shop and on digital this week, you’ll want to check out one or more of the following:

As a reminder, things can change and what you find on the above lists may differ from what’s actually arriving in your local shop. So always check with your comics retailer for the final word on availability.

Titans: Beast World #1 (DC, $5.99): DC kicks off a crossover event focused on the Titans, which will run through that title, Nightwing and several one-shots over the next few months. This main miniseries is by Titans architect Tom Taylor and artist Ivan Reis, and the story features the arrival of The Necrostar on Earth, kind of an even-worse Starro the Conqueror. And the only hero who can stop him is Beast Boy.

X-Men Blue: Origins (Marvel, $5.99): Si Spurrier, Wilton Santos and Marcus To put the spotlight on Nightcrawler and Mystique in this one-shot that ties into the Uncanny Spider-Man miniseries that’s currently running. Marvel bills this as revealing “the definitive Nightcrawler origin story,” which sounds like they aim to correct the terrible retcons made to the character in the early 2000s.

Maria Llovet’s Crave #1 (Image, $3.99): Faithless creator Maria Llovet writes and draws this new title, which is set at an elite university where the student body becomes dangerously obsessed with a hookup app called Crave.

BRZRKR: Fallen Kingdom (BOOM!, $9.99): Keanu Reeves, The Batman Part II screenwriter Mattson Tomlin, artist Rebekah Isaacs and colorist Jordie Bellaire team up for another one-shot featuring a look at BRZRKR’s brutal past.

Barbaric: Wrong Kind of Righteous (Vault, $6.99): Michael Moreci and Nathan Gooden are joined by fantasy author Nicholas Eames for this new one-shot featuring Owen and his talking axe meeting up with a paladin who has a talking flail.

Batman ’89: Echoes #1 (DC, $3.99): Batman screenwriter Sam Hamm and artist Joe Quinones present another tale set in that early Michael Keaton era of the Batman films, as Harvey Dent drives Batman out of Gotham and ordinary citizens take up his crusade against crime.

Howard the Duck (Marvel, $5.99): Howard the Duck marks his 50th birthday this year, and to celebrate, Marvel’s throwing a party — or putting out a one-shot, anyway. The anthology includes stories by Chip Zdarsky, Daniel Kibblesmith, Joe Quinones and more.

Assassin’s Creed: Visionaries #1 (Massive, $4.99): This new anthology series features creator-driven original tales set in the Assassin’s Creed universe, and this first issue features stories by Ale Santos, Rafael Albuquerque, Stephane Louis, Marcelo Maiolo, Vera Daviet and more.

Nadia & the Nomobots #1 (Opus Comics, $4.99): This title by Diego Agrimbau and Juan Manuel Tumburnrus began life at Heavy Metal, but has gotten a second chance at Opus Comics following its previous publisher’s demise. It’s about a city of robots where humankind’s emotions are harvested and turned into drugs so the Nomobots can feel.

Amazing Spider-Man: Gang War First Strike (Marvel, $5.99): Spider-Man and several other street-level heroes will contend with a gang war in New York this winter, and Marvel comes out hard this week with three titles making their debut. This one-shot by Zeb Wells and Joey Vazquez serves as a prelude, as Hammerhead, Hobgoblin, Mr. Negative, the Owl and more go to war to see who will fill the very big void that the downfallen Kingpin and injured Tombstone left in their wake.

Spider-Woman #1 (Marvel, $4.99): Spider-Man won’t be alone as he tries to put a stop to the big NYC gang war; courtesy of Steve Foxe and Carola Borelli, Jessica Drew returns in a solo title this week, just in time to help Peter Parker out. The new title will also revisit the fact that Spider-Woman was wiped out from existence (and then brought back to life) in a recent Spider-Man storyline, so expect to see some changes in the revived hero/mom.

Luke Cage: Gang War #1 (Marvel, $4.99): Finally, NYC’s mayor gets in on the Gang War action as he jumps into his own solo miniseries. Rodney Barnes and Ramon Bachs show us what happens when the former Power Man feels powerless behind the mayor’s desk to stop the carnage, so he steps out from behind to do something he does very well — punch people.

Basic Instinct #1 (Sumerian, $4.99): In one of the more surprising comics licensing moves, Sumerian has obtain the rights to make a comic book spinoff based on the 1992 film Basic Instinct — which is not a sentence I ever expected to be typing in 2023. It’s by Sam Freeman and the wonderful Vanesa Del Rey, who present a new story inspired by the “Icepick Murders” centered around Catherine Tramell (Sharon Stone’s character in the film).

Cat Kid Comic Club: Influencers (Scholastic, $12.99): Dav Pilkey is back with another book in his Cat Kid Comic Club series, which encourages kids to make their own art and comics. This time around, the comics club finds out one of their comics will be published, which fills the club with “anxiety and doubt.”

Born Driven (Oni Press, $15.99): Saxton Moore Jr. and Nolwe Azul Tamis tell a story about the first African-American NASCAR driver and team owner, Wendell Scott, set during his childhood as he competes in his town’s soapbox derby

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