The Comic Queen

Zip ribbons and word balloons, Wednesday bliss and Previews dreams. If these phrases mean anything to you, then you're in the right place. But if they don't -- hey stick around anyway. You might just like what you see.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

August Previews Highlights

Just browsing through this month’s Previews, I didn’t notice as many “oh wows” as usual. Nothing really spectacular jumped out at me. Though, I do have some recommended reads and will be checking out a few titles I’ve been meaning to get around to.

Speaking of which, one thing I noticed was the number of TPBs from the smaller publishers this month. There seemed to be more trades out than usual, so if you’ve been wanting to try a series from a smaller publisher—SLG’s Bear (now in TPB for $14.95) for instance—now’s the time.

Here are my highlights of the August issue of Previews for items mostly released in the month of October.

Pick of the Month:
My Faith in Frankie TPB

Vertigo – page 115; $6.95; 112 pgs.
If you didn’t check out this four-issue limited series by Vertigo when it originally came out, I highly recommend picking this up in trade format. The story is fun and irreverent with snappy writing and exceptional art. Give it a whirl for only $6.95. My only concern with this edition is its digest size—I think this would have been better offered in its original size format.

Featured items:
Solo #1

DC; $3.95
The DC solicit says: “What happens when some of the most talented artists in comics are free to unleash their creative vision across 48 pages? The answer is SOLO, a unique bimonthly series that showcases the best of the best of the biz!” This is an intriguing experiment that I’m looking forward to. It will be interesting to see just how “free” the artists are allowed to be with time-honored DC characters. This first issue is written by Tim Sale, Brian Azzarello, Jeph Loeb, Darwyn Cooke, and Diana Schutz.

Hard Time TPB
DC (Focus line); $9.95; 144 pgs.
This trade collects issues 1–6 of the newer comic Hard Time in DC’s faltering Focus line. I’ve heard lots of good things about this series, so I’m going to pick up this trade and take a look for myself. I really hope they do the same thing with Kinetic (also in the Focus line), as this series’ pacing lends itself to the trade.

Astro City: A Visitor’s Guide
Wildstorm; $5.95; 48 pgs.
Good ol’ Astro City. I bought the entire run of the series and one shots a few months ago, and although I haven’t read them all, I’ve yet to be disappointed. Kurt Busiek writes great stories about this city of superheroes and the people who live there from many different perspectives. If you liked Superman: Secret Identity, you’ll want to read Astro City. The latest offering is a step off the beaten track. The solicit says, “This cleverly designed guide features all the info you need about Astro City: neighborhood guides, restaurant recommendations, highlights, local interests, ads for local businesses, and even a guide to the who’s who of the hero elite …” Nothing like further blurring the line between fiction and reality!

Ocean #1 (of 6)
Wildstorm – page 102; $2.95; 32 pgs.
This science fiction miniseries written by Warren Ellis looks fascinating. It features art from Chris Spouse and Karl Story, has to do with Jupiter’s moon Europa, the key to life on Earth, “and quite possibly its extinction.” Need I say more? I mean really.

Bright Elegy GN
By Leland Myrick; Adept Books; $12.95; 112 pgs.
Winner of a Xeric Foundation Grant, “Bright Elegy tells the story of mystery, violence, and love – the story of one man’s conflicted journey – a man trying to flee his past while at the same time sinking into childhood memories of succor and comfort.” This has a lot of potential and looks to be worth a read.

Bighead GN
By Jeffrey Brown; Top Shelf – page 348; $12.95; 128 pgs.
While I’ve only read a little of Brown’s work, I do like what I’ve read. There is a lot of bare honesty that comes out in his work. Bighead is billed as a irreverent and clever superhero parody centered around the hero “Bighead.” Should be a kick.

Non-Comics Pick of the Month:
In the T-shirts section, page 428, there is a great Simpson’s shirt featuring “Homer’s” image from the Mr. Sparkle box.


  • At 6:55 AM, July 28, 2004, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    If you do get the Hard Time trade, I'm interested to hear what you think. I usually like Gerber's work, but Hard Times didn't do anything for me and I dropped it after four issues.


  • At 9:18 AM, July 28, 2004, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I second your recommendation for My Faith in Frankie. It was a funny and interesting story with great characters. The art was clear and crisp. All around this should be a great book.



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