It’s my favorite time of the month again! The time when I get to look at the Image solicits and pick out ten things that I am excited for. It’s tough, it often leaves out some great things but as my dear old mum used to say to me when I was just a wee lad, “Them’s the breaks, kiddo.”
For the Top 10 of November, take a look below. For the full solicits, head on over to the resource of comic books.
10. The Last Version of the Last Christmas
It has been a while since I’ve looked at this book (two Christmases ago, to be precise, but with the popularity of Duggan and Posehn over at Marvel with “Deadpool” (let alone Remender), it looks like “The Last Christmas” is coming back into print with a deluxe hardcover of sorts. It’s a pretty nutso story, one full of gore and general insanity, but if there’s two things that you can walk away from the book thinking its this: 1) those Duggan and Posehn guys are pretty silly and 2) that Remender guy can actually draw!
So if yuletide chaos is your thing or more than just chestnuts roasting on an open fire amuses you, you’ll want to bring this ho-ho-home for the holidays!
But seriously. The books a bit twisted. Funny, but twisted.
THE LAST CHRISTMAS HC
story GERRY DUGGAN & BRIAN POSEHN
art RICK REMENDER, HILARY BARTA & MICHELLE MADSEN
cover GEOF DARROW
176 PAGES / FC / T+
The writers behind the hit series Deadpool present the sad, funny, and true story of Santa Claus after the apocalypse. After tragedy strikes the North Pole, Santa turns his back on humanity and gives up on Christmas. Even though the world has been completely overrun by naughty men, there’s still one boy that believes in Santa. But could that be the biggest mistake of his life?
Enjoy this modern action-comedy Christmas classic in hardcover for the first time. It’s illustrated with love by comic star RICK REMENDER and inked in a wonderful style reminiscent of Mad magazine by HILARY BARTA. This edition has a foreword from PATTON OSWALT and new commentary from the creators, plus the original covers from GEOF DARROW, RICK REMENDER, KIERON DWYER, and TONY MOORE.
Collects THE LAST CHRISTMAS #1-5
9. I’m Still Pretty Much Most Excited For Pretty Deadly Even Without Having Read It
It might seem strange to include a #2 on this list when there are still #1s to talk about, let alone #7s or #197s or whatever, but I can’t help it. Look at that cover. How can you want to read any other book right now?
I know you do too.
PRETTY DEADLY #2
story KELLY SUE DeCONNICK
art EMMA RÍOS & JORDIE BELLAIRE
cover EMMA RÍOS
32 PAGES / FC / M
The Old West is steeped in violence and strange magic in this macabre tale from the team behind the cult-hit miniseries Osborn, KELLY SUE DeCONNICK (Captain Marvel) and EMMA RÍOS (Dr. Strange). Gunfighters have it out with swords as the whole world burns. There will be blood, blood, blood.
8. Dave Taylor Joins Prophet
This is pretty exciting! I actually never read all of “Batman: Death by Design” (I picked it up in a store because I like Chip Kidd and read a decent chunk of it before it was time to leave) but what I remember about the book is that the art style was particularly impressive. It looked like something more raw than what we’re typically given, a book stripped down to its initial pencils with scarce inks that provide a different feel overall to the read. It wasn’t over-done or brought to life in any way more than what Taylor himself could do, and it gave the book a rustic but gorgeous and interesting vibe that I don’t recall seeing elsewhere.
Having him on “Prophet”? Makes sense. I can dig it. I will dig it in November.
story BRANDON GRAHAM
art DAVE TAYLOR
cover SIMON ROY
32 PAGES / FC / T+
BATMAN: DEATH BY DESIGN ARTIST DAVE TAYLOR DRAWS PROPHET!
An Empire Red-Mother is sent to investigate a fallen Prophet arc.
7. GØDLAND IS ØVER
We reported on this already and have been following the series extensively, but it is worth repeating that the book is finally coming to an end with a 72-page finale that hops into the future and will probably play with all of our emotions extensively. This is going to be one of the biggest books of November, and not just in page count.
story JOE CASEY
art / cover TOM SCIOLI
72 PAGES / FC / T+
AT LONG LAST — THE FINALE IS HERE! 72 PAGES OF GIANT GØD-COMICS! What began eight long years ago comes to its cosmic conclusion! Will all questions be answered? Let’s just put it this way: THIS IS IT! The single issue where comic books are changed forever is finally dropping! Buy this book and take the next step!
6. Bad Dog
Another book that I’ve expressed elation for in a separate example, but “Bad Dog” is coming back! “BAD DOG,” YOU GUYS! Remember “Bad Dog?” I remember “Bad Dog.” I’ll always remember “Bad Dog.” I can’t pre-order this hard enough.
BAD DOG #5
story JOE KELLY
art /cover DIEGO GRECO
32 PAGES / FC / M
“WHAT HAPPENS, STAY,” Part Two
It’s a Thanksgiving Miracle! Bad Dog’s triumphant return! Lou and Wendell try to survive Vegas, Baker, and the evil Dairy Queen while Lou searches for the meaning of life in Milk.
5. A Voice in the Dark
So as we start moving into the territory of what is brand new in November, the first thing I have to talk about is “A Voice in the Dark.” Hot off a successful Kickstarter, the book alone sounds like it could be rather interesting.
But what makes this impossibly impressive to me is that the series creator, Larime Taylor, is a disabled artist who illustrates with his mouth. Suffering from a genetic disorder, Taylor does all his work with a pen in his mouth — and where the Kickstarter’s potential purpose was to help him move off of assisted living and poverty, now he has a comic coming out from Image!
And you know what? The pages look great:
I’m going to venture a guess and say that “A Voice in the Dark” may be one of the most interesting comics published in 2013. I’m very much looking forward to giving it a read.
A VOICE IN THE DARK #1
story / art / cover LARIME TAYLOR
48 PAGES / BW / T+
“BLOOD MAKES NOISE”
It’s been 72 days since Zoey killed someone. With her recent move to college, Zoey is eager to start a fresh chapter of her life — one where she can control her dark urges the way she has before. But when she becomes the host of a late-night campus radio show, Zoey must consider if she has given a voice to something far more troubled than her anonymous callers.
4. Strangeways Drumhellar, Here We Come
We had the exclusive announcement on this, but all title changes aside Riley’s new book sounds pretty fantastic. I don’t know particularly any more than you do from looking at the solicit, but what little I do know from assumption and inference tells me that if you are a) a fan of anything Riley has ever done and/or b) a fan of “Rebel Blood,” his previous collaboration with Alex Link, you’re going to like this.
And, hey, with enough support there’s even the chance this could keep going. After all, a book about a detective does seem like it’d have the opportunity to be an ongoing, no? And who wouldn’t want a Riley Rossmo-illustrated ongoing.
story ALEX LINK
art RILEY ROSSMO
cover A RILEY ROSSMO
cover B ROC UPCHURCH
32 PAGES / FC / M
When shock-induced visions drive a detective specializing in the paranormal to a small town in South Dakota, he finds himself up against flesh-hungry bog-men, his ex-girlfriend, their mutual ex-girlfriend (did we mention she’s a werewolf?), and a demon that’s stolen his arsenal of psychedelics. Then things start to get weird. We live in strange times. They call for strange ways!
We showed off a solid teaser for the book, but Johnston and Mitten’s new creator-owned ongoing series sounds fantastic. And kicking off with 40 pages to book, at $2.99! Image has been great about getting creators who work well together to put out colossally exciting new works of genre fiction, and “Umbral” seems to be another example of that for sure. Even if you’ve never read “Wasteland,” I reckon this isn’t a book you’re going to want to miss.
UMBRAL #1 — GEM OF THE MONTH
story ANTONY JOHNSTON
art / cover CHRISTOPHER MITTEN
40 PAGES / FC / M
“THE DAY DAWNED TWICE”
A NEW DARK FANTASY FROM THE CREATORS OF WASTELAND! The young thief called Rascal witnesses the horrific murder of the royal family — now the world’s dark legends will be relived, and only Rascal even knows it’s happening!
Master worldbuilder ANTONY JOHNSTON (Dead Space, Daredevil) and his Wasteland co-creator CHRISTOPHER MITTEN (Batman, Criminal Macabre) bring you a new fantasy world rich in mythology, history, and blood! Extra-long first issue for the regular price of $2.99!
2. Alex + Ada + Jonathan + Sarah
One of my favorite creators working in comics today are the collective Luna Brothers, Jonathan and Joshua. From “The Sword” to “Girls” and “Ultra,” they’ve put out some fantastic work together. But after “The Sword,” they stopped collaborating and started working on their own things; Josh put out “Whispers,” which is coming to an end soon, and Jonathan did illustrations for a mostly prose book he also wrote called “Star Bright and the Looking Glass.”
But now Jonathan returns to comics with collaborator Sarah Vaughn, a sci-fi romance book about the eponymous characters — the former, a human looking for love in all the robot places, and the latter the love of his life delivered to him. It’s Jonathan’s first comic in three years, and to miss this would surely be folly.
ALEX + ADA #1
story JONATHAN LUNA & SARAH VAUGHN
art / cover JONATHAN LUNA
32 PAGES / FC / T+
From JONATHAN LUNA (GIRLS, THE SWORD, Spider-Woman, ULTRA) and SARAH VAUGHN (Sparkshooter) comes ALEX + ADA, a sci-fi drama set in the near future. The last thing in the world Alex wanted was an X5, the latest in realistic androids. But when Ada is dropped into his life, will Alex keep her?
This will be JONATHAN LUNA’s return to comics after three years off since the end of THE SWORD!
1. Techno-anarchic Reality Destruction, by way of Frazetta
Finally, the number one book of the month is Rick Remender’s return to Image Comics with Matteo Scalera and frequent colorist collaborator Dean White for a book that’s one-part sci-fi epic and one-part Frank Frazetta style series. It looks pretty crazy so far, right on par with what Remender is doing at Marvel with the surprisingly large-scale drama of “Captain America,” and with this being one of two books announced for Remender at Image, it’s perhaps a good idea to hop into this early and get ahead of the curve so ten years from now you aren’t kicking yourself for missing this like you probably missed “Fear Agent.” (You know who you are!)
And if you don’t believe me on the awesomeness of it all, check out this preview. I’ll wait for you to pick your jaw up off the floor.
BLACK SCIENCE #1 — GEM OF THE MONTH
story RICK REMENDER
art MATTEO SCALERA & DEAN WHITE
cover A MATTEO SCALERA & DEAN WHITE
cover B ANDREW ROBINSON
32 PAGES / FC / M
Grant McKay, former member of The Anarchistic Order of Scientists, has finally done the impossible: He has deciphered Black Science and punched through the barriers of reality. But what lies beyond the veil is not epiphany, but chaos. Now Grant and his team are lost, living ghosts shipwrecked on an infinite ocean of alien worlds, barreling through the long-forgotten, ancient, and unimaginable dark realms. The only way is forward. The only question is how far are they willing to go, and how much can they endure, to get home again?
Join writer RICK REMENDER and the superstar art team of MATTEO SCALERA & DEAN WHITE for this face-melting science fiction epic spanning the lifetimes of a cast of dimensional castaways lead by the man who caused it all.
How fitting was it that we began and ended with Remender, eh? As those from the city I live in would say, wicked fitting.