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    Soliciting Multiversity: DC’s Top Ten for April 2017

    By | January 31st, 2017
    Posted in Columns | % Comments

    With the exception of an inter-company crossover, April doesn’t bring a ton of new things to DC’s slate. So, that gives a chance to focus on a few crossovers, some reprints, and some interesting creator choices. Let’s dig in!

    10. Andy MacDonald on “Justice League of America!”

    (Note: This is the cover #4, DC hasn’t released the #5 cover yet)

    Andy MacDonald recently illustrated the “Justice League of America: The Atom Rebirth” #1, and did a great job showing the complexity and subtlety of Ryan Choi’s world. MacDonald, who did some great work over in the Bat-books recently, appears to be the second artist on “Justice League of America.” either giving Ivan Reis an off arc or, perhaps, being the rotating second artist. I’m cool with either, but I hope MacDonald has a more permanent position on the team. While Reis does some great, bombastic work, this team has some interesting characters that might benefit from a more nuanced, focused tone.

    That said, the idea that MacDonald is doing a Lobo-centric arc is hilarious to me.

    JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #5
    Written by STEVE ORLANDO
    Art by ANDY MACDONALD
    Cover by IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO
    Variant cover by DOUG MAHNKE

    Retailers: This issue will ship with two covers. Please see the order form for details.

    “HEART OF A BASTICH” part one! The JLA discovers a super arms dealer has transformed an entire city into his own massive militia force. And when the team can’t liberate its citizens from the outside, they turn to their own legendary master of mass destruction…Lobo!
    On sale APRIL 26 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T

    9. Unfollow “Unfollow”

    While it didn’t seem like a concept that would last forever, it is still a little sad to see “Unfollow” shut its doors. The Rob Williams-penned book had a simple to follow, fun concept that looks pretty prescient. It was also a fun coming out party for Mike Dowling, who was best known before this for doing “2000 AD” strips. He handled the bulk of the series, and did a really nice job adding to the realism and paranoia of the story.

    I hope these two work together again.

    Also of note, “Clean Room” is also ending this month, but that has been announced as the end of ‘season one,’ so there will be more of those stories in the future. That appears less likely for “Unfollow.”

    UNFOLLOW #18
    Written by ROB WILLIAMS
    Art by MIKE DOWLING
    Cover by MATT TAYLOR

    Rubinstein’s mask leads the way to Larry Ferrell, but can the master of social media truly be defeated? After all, this is his game. The 140 come down to just one and death waits in the jungle. Who are we really?
    On sale APRIL 26 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • MATURE READERS • Final issue

    8. THIS IS NOT A DRILL – MIKE ALLRED ON “DOOM PATROL”

    In a move that can only be described as ‘obvious and inspired,’ Mike Allred is illustrating an issue of “Doom Patrol.” This is such a perfect fit or a million reasons: Allred and Way share a love of pop culture, and Young Animal, thus far, seems like the exact type of thing that Allred has excelled at over the years: taking classic concepts, giving them new life, and running them through a musical filter.

    This also appears to be a Niles Caulder-centric issue, which is both fun and a little bit of a bummer. On the DC3cast which drops tomorrow, we discuss how we love the one-page Caulder tales, and sort of hoped they would stay that way for awhile. That said, Caulder is a fun character, and his connection to the team has been tenuous, at best, thus far.

    I’m not asking for Nick Derington to drop off the book, but if we can get an Allred issue once or twice a year, I’ll be a very happy boy.

    DOOM PATROL #7
    Written by GERARD WAY
    Art by MICHAEL ALLRED
    Backup story art by BRANDON BIRD
    Cover by MICHAEL ALLRED
    Variant cover by NICK DERINGTON

    Retailers: This issue will ship with two covers. Please see the order form for details.

    How have you been, Niles Caulder? The Chief is back, and he’s ready to reshape the new Doom Patrol to be just like the old Doom Patrol—a prospect not everyone is happy with. But the team’s former leader hasn’t grown less manipulative in his old age, so nobody make any rash decisions. Pretty sure he’s up to something. Michael Allred (iZOMBIE, Silver Surfer) joins Young Animal for this special one-off issue.
    On sale APRIL 26 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • MATURE READERS

    Continued below

    7. They are teasing us with Justice Society stories, y’all

    There are a few books solicited this month, coming out in May (as collected editions often are solicited a month earlier than floppies), that seem to indicate that the Justice Society will be back sooner than later. One is the “Last Days of the Justice Society,” a post-Crisis continuity fix that put the team on ice. Another is this, a collection of Batman and Wildcat stories. This is one of my favorite team-ups, and Wildcat is a character that often gets overlooked when talking about DC’s great vigilantes. The core of the JSA – Wildcat, Alan Scott, Jay Garrick – represent three totally different types of heroes but, in many ways, they are the blueprint for DC’s modern trinity. Wildcat is the un-powered vigilante, Garrick shares the power of a Greek god, and Alan is the avatar of hope with extreme powers.

    That’s a long winded way of saying that Batman and Wildcat make a great team, and these stories are a ton of fun.

    BATMAN/WILDCAT TP
    Written by CHUCK DIXON, BEAU SMITH and BOB HANEY
    Art by SERGIO CARIELLO, JIM APARO, IRV NOVICK, BOB BROWN, NICK CARDY and others
    Cover by ART THIBERT and DANNY MIKI

    The fight of the century is on! But it’ll take more than muscle for Batman and Wildcat to shut down a secret superhuman fighting ring that’s killing its combatants! Two of the DC Universe’s greatest fighters go head to head in these slobberknockers from BATMAN/WILDCAT #1-3, CATWOMAN/WILDCAT #1-4 and THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD #88, 97, 110, 118 and 127.
    On sale MAY 17 • 280 pg, FC, $24.99 US

    6. Mignola’s time at DC (except for his greatest contributions)

    This is the book I’ve been waiting for; Mike Mignola did some incredible work at DC before becoming the creator of one of comics’ best shared universes. I am particularly jazzed about the “dozens” of covers – Mignola was, and is, one of the best cover artists of the modern era, and his ‘Death in the Family’ covers alone cement that fact.

    I understand that this can’t collect all of Mignola’s DC work for a few reasons, but there are two especially notable omissions. The first is “Cosmic Odyssey,” the Jim Starlin-written New Gods/Justice League tale that is one of my favorite comics ever. The other is “Gotham by Gaslight,” an Elseworlds tale that many cite as Mignola’s best big 2 work. Both have been (relatively) recently reprinted, so it makes sense that they wouldn’t be found here, but this collection looks a little light without them.

    Still, this is going on my shelf.

    THE DC UNIVERSE BY MIKE MIGNOLA HC
    Written by NEIL GAIMAN, JOHN BYRNE, PAUL KUPPERBERG, ROGER STERN, JERRY ORDWAY and GEORGE PEREZ
    Art by MIKE MIGNOLA and others
    Cover by MIKE MIGNOLA

    This new title collects Mike Mignola’s work on comics including SUPERMAN: THE WORLD OF KRYPTON #1-4, ACTION COMICS ANNUAL #2, SUPERMAN #18 and 23, BATMAN: LEGENDS OF THE DARK KNIGHT #54, BATMAN: GOTHAM KNIGHTS #36, SWAMP THING ANNUAL #5, PHANTOM STRANGER #1-4 and more! Also collects dozens of covers by Mignola!
    On sale MAY 10 • 400 pg, FC, $39.99 US

    5. Adam Strange, eh?

    Another potential clue to DC’s publishing plans of the future: “The Death of Hawkman” wraps up in March, and writer Marc Andreyko has said that the series is setting up future events. Well, like an Adam Strange solo series maybe? The publishing of an Adam Strange omnibus in July sure seems like something DC would do to coincide with a new series.

    Of course, they could just want to share these very fun stories. But I think you’ll be seeing an Adam Strange series. And, spoiler alert: I think the creative team may have something to do with our next item.

    ADAM STRANGE: THE SILVER AGE OMNIBUS VOL. 1 HC
    Written by GARDNER FOX, EDMOND HAMILTON and JACK SCHIFF
    Art by MIKE SEKOWSKY, CARMINE INFANTINO, MURPHY ANDERSON and others
    Cover by MICHAEL CHO

    The Silver Age adventures of Adam Strange are collected in one giant omnibus! After being mysteriously teleported to the distant world of Rann, Adam Strange’s life changed forever as he went from being an archaeologist to a cosmic hero. In these stories, Adam and his new ally, Alanna, defend Rann against alien invaders, giant monsters, mad scientists, out-of-control robots and more! This new title collects SHOWCASE #17-19 and 101-103, MYSTERY IN SPACE #53-100 and 102, STRANGE ADVENTURES #157, 222, 226, HAWKMAN #18-19 and WORLD’S FINEST COMICS #262-263.
    On sale JULY 19 • 944 pg, FC, $99.99 US

    Continued below

    4. Future Past Quest

    So, “Future Quest” is wrapping up after a dozen issues. I can’t say I’m not a little happy about this, and I feel sorry for saying that. I’m a big fan of Jeff Parker and Doc Shaner, and a bigger fan of them together. But, and this is me being real: “Future Quest” wasn’t doing it for me. Too many filler artists, too many sidebars with characters I didn’t know/care about; it always felt like it was 10% off. And it was stopping Parker and Shaner to collaborate on things at DC that I cared more about.

    Like, say, an Adam Strange ongoing?

    Hear me out: Adam Strange is popping up in a Hanna-Barbera annual paired with Johnny Quest, which follows him after his “Death of Hawkman” adventure. The space setting is a perfect fit for this team and, again, let’s be real, it will only last 12 or so issues, giving them another clear exit point before they get to work on the “Shazam” book we all know will start around the same time as the movie. Or a “Superman” book. Or anything they want, because these guys are the best.

    FUTURE QUEST #12
    Written by JEFF PARKER
    Art and cover by EVAN “DOC” SHANER
    Variant cover by TONY HARRIS

    Retailers: This issue will ship with two covers. Please see the order form for details.

    The most daring heroes and greatest minds of Earth and a distant solar system make their last stand against the World Ender. How can we survive when other more advanced worlds have fallen? Get ready for the cosmic finale that shapes the Hanna-Barbera action adventure universe forever!
    On sale APRIL 26 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T • Final issue

    3. Pulpy, pulpy goodness

    DC has loved Batman doing pulp stuff forever (remember “First Wave?”), and they’ve found a really inspired creative team to tell this pulp story. Steve Orlando and Riley Rossmo were gangbusters on the “Night of the Monster Men” crossover, and they teased a second such Bat-story in the recent “Batman Annual” #1. So, this gives a little more time for that crossover to percolate, while not missing an opportunity to have these two iconic characters team up. Putting Scott Snyder with them (presumably as the plotter) means the book will sell twice as many copies, so you’re welcome, Dynamite.

    BATMAN/THE SHADOW #1
    Written by SCOTT SNYDER and STEVE ORLANDO
    Art and cover by RILEY ROSSMO
    Variant cover by TIM SALE
    Variant cover by CLIFF CHIANG
    Blank variant cover
    Coloring book variant cover by RILEY ROSSMO

    Retailers: This issue will ship with five covers. Please see the order form for details.

    Two of history’s greatest vigilantes are reunited at last! Murder has come to Gotham City, and Lamont Cranston appears to be the culprit…but he’s been dead for over fifty years! Batman will go to the ends of the Earth to unravel the mystery of Cranston’s life, but the mysterious Shadow will do everything in his power to stop him from learning too much…

    The superstar team of writers Scott Snyder and Steve Orlando and artist Riley Rossmo brings you a dark and twisty modern noir like nothing you’ve seen before, with a brand-new villain unlike any either hero has faced! This is the unmissable crime series of 2017, so get on board now! Co-published with Dynamite.
    On sale APRIL 26 • 32 pg, FC, 1 of 6, $3.99 US • RATED T

    2. Super-book weirdness

    I was heaping praise on DC for keeping the “Superman Reborn” crossover to two books and four weeks, and then this happens: A multi-month fallout over all the Super-books. Not only that, but the creative teams for many of these books appear to have changed, either for the crossover, or permanently. The biggest blow is that, at least for this month, Phil Jimenez is off of “Superwoman,” replaced by K. Perkins. This is nothing against her, but this book was Phil’s baby, and I, frankly, don’t want to see anyone else playing with these characters for a long time.

    Continued below

    Similarly, Cullen Bunn is writing the “Trinity” part of this fallout event, replacing Francis Manapul. This is more of a wash, as Manapul’s writing is still not in the same state, let alone city, let alone ballpark as his art. But I hope that this doesn’t derail the Super books too seriously, as they have been some of the highlights of ‘Rebirth’ overall.

    SUPERWOMAN #9
    Written by K. PERKINS
    Art by STEPHEN SEGOVIA and ART THIBERT
    Cover by BILLY TAN
    Variant cover by RENATO GUEDES

    Retailers: This issue will ship with two covers. Please see the order form for details.

    “SUPER WOMEN” part one! In this story tying in to “Superman Reborn Aftermath,” Lois Lane and Lana Lang find themselves reunited at last! Along with the Man of Steel, their reunion is cut short by the return of Cannon and Saber, who arrive to wreak havoc on the newly restored Metropolis. The mantle of Superwoman will be decided in this debut chapter of “Super Women”!
    On sale APRIL 19 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T

    1. The Button

    This has been covered to death already, but the crossover is going to be huge for DC, bringing the Watchmen characters into the most direct contact with the main DC ever. While I’m confident that DC will do their best to not undo all of the ‘Rebirth’ optimism and joy with an event like this, I’m not totally convinced that this won’t sort of fuck up what DC has been doing for the past 9 months. I sincerely hope I’m wrong; Joshua Williamson’s involvement helps that a lot.

    THE FLASH #21
    Written by JOSHUA WILLIAMSON
    Art and cover by HOWARD PORTER
    Variant cover by TBD

    Retailers: This issue will ship with three covers. Please see the order form for details.

    “THE BUTTON” part two! The cataclysmic events of DC UNIVERSE: REBIRTH #1 continue here! The Dark Knight and The Fastest Man Alive, the two greatest detectives on any world, unite to explore the mystery behind a certain blood-stained smiley button embedded in the Batcave wall. What starts as a simple investigation turns deadly when the secrets of the button prove irresistible to an unwelcome third party—and it’s not who anyone suspects! It’s a mystery woven through time, and the ticking clock starts here!

    On sale APRIL 26 • 32 pg, FC
    Lenticular cover edition $3.99 US
    Nonlenticular edition and variant edition each $2.99 US • RATED T

    What did I miss? Let me know in the comments, and check out the full solicitations over at Newsarama.


    //TAGS | Soliciting Multiversity

    Brian Salvatore

    Brian Salvatore is an editor, podcaster, reviewer, writer at large, and general task master at Multiversity. When not writing, he can be found playing music, hanging out with his kids, or playing music with his kids. He also has a dog named Lola, a rowboat, and once met Jimmy Carter. Feel free to email him about good beer, the New York Mets, or the best way to make Chicken Parmagiana (add a thin slice of prosciutto under the cheese).

    EMAIL | ARTICLES



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