Tag Archives: dc comics

Weekly Comic Book Roundup #18

Eternals, Vol. 1: Only Death is Eternal

(Eternals (2021) #1-6)

by Kieron GillenEsad Ribić (Art)

The Synopsis

Never die…never win. What’s the point of an eternal battle? For millions of years, one hundred Eternals have roamed the Earth, secret protectors of humanity. Without them, mankind would be smears between the teeth of the demon-like Deviants. Their war has waged for all time, echoing in our myths and nightmares. But today, the Eternals face something new: change! Can they — or anyone on Earth — survive their discovery? An Eternal has been murdered by one of their own, and this may not be the last such killing. But Sersi’s number one suspect is — Thena?! Plus, titans clash in a city driven mad, as Ikaris battles Thanos! From the thought-provoking minds of Kieron Gillen (YOUNG AVENGERS, UNCANNY X-MEN) and Esad Ribić (THOR: GOD OF THUNDER, SECRET WARS) comes a new vision of the classic Marvel mythology!

COLLECTING: Eternals (2021) 1-6

The Verdict

A truly remarkable and well-crafted look into some of the most powerful figures in the Marvel Universe. The shocking death of one of their own leads to an Eternals serial killer hunt, and the shocking confrontation with Thanos will lead to an even more shocking betrayal within their group. The politics, social structure, and mythology explored within the Eternals, Deviants, and Celestials as a whole through this series was fantastic, and the artwork was visceral and thoughtful in its approach. A definite must-read for Marvel fans, especially with the film’s release for the MCU.

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Heroes Reborn: America’s Mightiest Heroes

(Heroes Reborn: America’s Mightiest Heroes #1)

by Jason AaronDale Keown (Artist), Ed McGuinness (Artist), Federico Vicentini (Artist), James Stokoe (Artist), R.M. Guéra (Artist), Erica D’Urso (Artist), Aaron Kuder (Artist)

The Synopsis

A world without Avengers! Tony Stark never built an Iron Man armor. Thor is a hard-drinking atheist who despises hammers. Wakanda is dismissed as a myth. Captain America was never found in the ice – because there were no Avengers to find him. Instead, this planet has always been protected by Earth’s Mightiest Heroes: the Squadron Supreme of America! Now Hyperion, Blur, Doctor Spectrum, Power Princess and Nighthawk face an attack from some of their fiercest enemies – including Dr. Juggernaut, the Black Skull, the Silver Witch, the Goblin and Thanos with his Infinity Rings. But why is Blade the vampire hunter the one man alive who seems to remember that the entire world has somehow been…reborn? And what is the Daywalker going to do about it?

Collects Heroes Reborn (2021) #1-7, Heroes Return (2021) #1

The Verdict

Shocking, gripping, and a brilliant way of combining the magic of a Marvel What If…? storyline within the main Marvel Universe. The exploration of the history and mythos of the Marvel Version of a Dark Justice League was so awe-inspiring, and seeing the dark path Phil Coulson in the comics has taken and the growing power and influence Mephisto is building not just in the main 616 Universe, but in the Multiverse as a whole was chilling and exhilarating all at once to read. The artwork was inspired and the exploration of the characters and who they are when their heroic identities were taken away was brilliant to see. 

Avengers by Jason Aaron, Vol. 8: Enter the Phoenix

(Avengers by Jason Aaron #8)

by Jason AaronJavier Garrón (Artist), Dale Keown (Artist), Luca Maresca (Artist)

The Synopsis

The planet-burning cosmic firebird known as the Phoenix Force has returned — and the Avengers are drawn into a globe-spanning battle for ultimate power! In the distant past of One Million B.C., learn the story of one young girl whose only crime was being born with red hair…and whose destiny would change human history forever! In the present, the Phoenix Force searches the globe for a new avatar — and many of Marvel’s most powerful heroes and villains are contenders! As the battle to wield the Phoenix grows ever bloodier and more desperate, Thor leads the Avengers in a fight to contain the Phoenix Force. But the quest is complicated by the Thunder God’s mysterious connection to the cosmic firebird! Who will be the all-new Phoenix?! All will be transformed…but not all will survive!

COLLECTING: AVENGERS (2018) 39-45

The Verdict

The jaw-dropping power of the Phoenix Force arrives on Earth, and its fire burns inside the chosen heroes and villains of the Marvel Universe as they fight for a new host. As the heroes try to hold on in their fight to find a way to either contain or defeat the cosmic bird, the secret history of the Phoenix on Earth is revealed, as is the shocking origins of one classic Avenger. Meanwhile, the final battles will show either the rise of a powerful new Avenger or a dangerous new foe. The artwork has brilliant contrasts of bright and dark colors as the story unfolds, and the writers showcase the far-reaching new directions the Avengers and the Marvel Universe are taking moving forward. A must-read Avengers tale!

Miles Morales, Vol. 1: Straight Out of Brooklyn

(Miles Morales (Collected Editions) #1)

by Saladin Ahmed (Goodreads Author), Javier Garrón (Illustrations)

The Synopsis

Miles Morales swings back into the spotlight! Balancing a normal life, school, friends, family and super-heroing has never been easy for Miles, but when the rampaging Rhino and a cadre of mysterious criminals start plaguing Brooklyn, things take a dark turn for the young Spider-Man! And Miles doesn’t even know the half of it yet. What mystery lurks under the surface of this newest villainous uprising? Eisner Award-winner Saladin Ahmed (BLACK BOLT) and Young Gun Javier Garrón (ANT-MAN & THE WASP) bring you the latest and greatest adventures of the coolest character in the Marvel Universe!

COLLECTING: MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN 1-6

The Verdict

I absolutely love the new storylines that this character is creating. Miles is a fantastic hero and worthy of the Spider-Man mantle. The changes to his path as a hero from Peter Parkers, from his parent’s knowledge of his heroic identity to his contrasting relationship with his criminal Uncle and more, this character really does bring the wonder and fun of the Spider-Man comics back into the modern-day. The representation that Marvel has employed in this series is incredible to see, and the artwork is sleek and modern, showcasing the future generations of heroes the Marvel Universe is developing.

Injustice: Year Zero

(Injustice: Gods Among Us – The Complete Collection #0)

by Tom Taylor (Goodreads Author), Roge Antonio (Illustrator), Cian Tormey (Illustrator), Rain Beredo (Color Artist)

The Synopsis

The beloved series INJUSTICE is back–with a prequel! INJUSTICE: YEAR ZERO!

Before Superman, Batman, or the Justice League were household heroes, there was the JSA! But when a secret begins to unravel within the JSA, will it lead to the unraveling of the heroes we know today? Is there a traitor within the ranks of our heroes? Or is someone hiding something that could ruin every DCU superhero forever? No one is safe in INJUSTICE: YEAR ZERO!

Collects Injustice: Year Zero #1-14.

The Verdict

This was such a brilliant prequel to the highly acclaimed Elseworlds series. The world of Injustice is so visceral and equally horrifying to the worlds of DCeased and Kingdom Come. The inclusion of the JSA and their influence on the modern-day Justice League heroes, as well as the new heights of the Joker’s villainy, make this such a brilliant read. The artwork really reflects the chaos and darkness that the villain brings upon the heroes, and how his influence darkens the world and its heroes as a whole. 

DC Meets Looney Tunes

(DC Meets Looney Tunes)

by Tom King (Goodreads Author) (Writer), Frank J. Barbiere (Goodreads Author) (Writer), Tony Bedard (Writer), Sam Humphries (Writer), Steve Orlando (Writer), Jimmy Palmiotti (Writer), Bill Morrison (Writer), John Floyd (Artist), Tom Grummett (Artist), Scott Hanna (Artist), Kelley Jones (Artist), Aaron Lopresti (Artist), Jerome K. Moore (Artist), Mark Texeira (Artist), Lee Weeks (Artist)

The Synopsis

DC’s iconic superheroes meet the wacky characters of Looney Tunes in some of the most surprising stories in comics in DC MEETS LOONEY TUNES!

When Elmer Fudd sets his sights on Bruce Wayne, it’s a “wabbit hunt” you’d never imagine! Prospector Yosemite Sam strikes it rich, but can circus performer Foghorn Leghorn and bounty hunter Jonah Hex keep him alive long enough to enjoy it?

Plus, Wonder Woman enlists the help of the Tasmanian Devil to save the Amazons; Lobo gets caught in the war between a mutated Road Runner and a wily super-genius of a coyote; and the last survivors of Mars fight over the fate of planet Earth! Finally, when the Legion of Super-Heroes needs help, a wrong turn at Albuquerque means the future’s survival depends on…”Super” Bugs Bunny!

Worlds collide, courtesy of some of comics’ greatest talents, among them Tom King, Lee Weeks, Jimmy Palmiotti, Mark Texeira, Tony Bedard, Bill Morrison, Kelley Jones, Steve Orlando, Sam Humphries and more!

Collects BATMAN/ELMER FUDD SPECIAL #1, JONAH HEX/YOSEMITE SAM SPECIAL #1, WONDER WOMAN/TASMANIAN DEVIL SPECIAL #1, LOBO/ROAD RUNNER SPECIAL #1, MARTIAN MANHUNTER/MARVIN THE MARTIAN SPECIAL #1 and LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES/BUGS BUNNY SPECIAL #1!

The Verdict

Such a fun and brilliant read! The authors all did a marvelous job of balancing the grim nature of the DC Universe stories with the zany fun and wackiness of the Looney Tunes Universe. Not only is this reflected in the artwork in each contrasting story, but in the character development and action, each story employs. A fun departure for each character and hero, this is not a collection readers will want to miss.

Strange Adventures

(Strange Adventures (2020-2021) #1-12)

by Tom King (Goodreads Author), Mitch Gerads (Illustrator), Evan Doc Shaner (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Bestselling writer Tom King is back with a new epic that reinvents one of DC’s classic science-fiction adventurers, Adam Strange, examining whether his actions were heroic or disgraceful.

This new science fiction epic written by bestselling author Tom King reinvents one of DC’s classic adventure characters, Adam Strange. Born on Earth and hero of the distant planet Rann, Adam Strange is famous throughout the galaxy for his bravery and honor. After leading his adopted home to victory in a great planetary war, Adam and his wife, Alanna, retire to Earth, where they are greeted with cheers, awards, and parades. But not all is as it seems, as the decisions Adam made during battles on Rann come back to haunt his family. It will take an investigation by one of the most brilliant heroes in the DC Universe, Mr. Terrific, to uncover the truth and reveal whether Adam Strange is a hero or a disgrace.

The Mister Miracle team of writer Tom King and artist Mitch Gerads are joined by fan-favorite artist Evan “Doc” Shaner to bring you an epic tale in the tradition of Watchmen, The Dark Knight Returns, and DC: The New Frontier–a story of blood, war, and love that readers will be talking about for years to come.

Collects Strange Adventures #1-12.

The Verdict

This was such a fun and epic sci-fi thriller! The DC Universe delves into the grim reality of war and psychological trauma in war through the characterization of Adam Strange. The roller-coaster he and his wife go on as the heroes of Earth go from allies and friends to distrustful frenemies was such an engaging psychological thriller of a story, and the stark contrast of colors and alternating timelines in the narrative helped the pacing of the mystery this story deployed, capturing that classic noir mystery vibe the narrative was developing. Such an amazing read.

Batman Beyond, Volume 1: Escaping the Grave

(Batman Beyond (2016) #1)

by Dan Jurgens (Writer), Bernard Chang (Artist), Marcelo Maiolo (Colourist), Travis Lanham (Letterer)

The Synopsis

A part of DC Universe: Rebirth!

Terry McGinnis takes on the Batman cowl amidst rumors that the original Joker has returned. An entire section of Gotham City has decended into the Jokerz’ hands, creating a community of clown-worshipping crazies called Jokerztown! Rising from the chaos, Terminal unifies the gang of Jokerz and he’s after the new Batman.

Written by Dan Jurgens and illustrated by Bernard Chang, the in-continuity tales of the Dark Knight of the future continue here in Batman Beyond, Volume 1: The Return!

CollectingBatman Beyond 1-5, Rebirth

The Verdict

I was such a huge fan of the Batman Beyond series growing up. This futuristic version of Gotham the comics describe takes on a whole new life, showing the aftermath of Brother Eye’s attacks and the return of the city’s heroes. As the Jokerz gang terrorizes the city, Batman must make his triumphant return and stop this growing threat. The splash of futurist technology and artwork contrasted with the grim and gritty reality that Gotham has always represented was amazing to see here, as was the contrast in Batman’s fight for justice and order against the Jokerz vision of chaos and destruction. There were enough twists and turns in this storyline to keep readers not only invested but thrilled at the return of some truly terrifying Batman villains.

Dark Nights: Death Metal

(Dark Nights: Collected Editions #2)

by Scott Snyder (Goodreads Author), Greg Capullo (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Get ready for the earth-shattering encore as writer Scott Snyder and artist Greg Capullo, the legendary team behind Dark Nights: Metal and Batman: Last Knight on Earth, reunite for one last tour of DC’s Dark Multiverse.

When the DC Universe is enveloped by the Dark Multiverse, the Justice League is at the mercy of the Batman Who Laughs. Humanity struggles to survive in a hellish landscape twisted beyond recognition, while Batman, Wonder Woman, and Superman have all been separated and must fight to survive. Along the way, Wonder Woman roars across the horrifying Dark Multiverse landscape in the world’s most demented monster truck, with Swamp Thing riding shotgun! And when the Justice League launches its assault on New Apokolips, the team’s goal is to free Superman from his solar prison–but it all goes off the rails when they learn that the Man of Steel is gone for good thanks to the Anti-Life Equation. Collects Dark Nights: Death Metal #1-6.

The Verdict

The epic conclusion to the crisis the Batman Who Laughs has been building the DC Multiverse to for years has finally arrived. Seeing the heroes pushed to their limits and fighting with everything they have really showcased the strength and courage they represent, and the story of truth and light being the legacy these heroes leave behind as the next generation of heroes takes over was so well represented here. What was amazing was getting to see Wonder Woman take the role of leader in this fight, becoming the light itself against the Batman Who Laugh’s darkness. Their contrasting viewpoints and equal willpower made them formidable opponents, and the wild artwork and visuals of this series captured the punk and metal vibes the series represented. Such an essential and must-read series for DC Comics fans!

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Justice League: Endless Winter

(Justice League: Endless Winter #1-9)

by Andy LanningRon MarzHoward Porter (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Spanning across time, continents, and DC comics titles, a cold new threat arises at the former site of the Fortress of Solitude!

1000 years ago, a disparate group of heroes — Hippolyta, Black Adam, Swamp Thing and the Viking Prince — banded together to prevent the world from freezing at the hands of the Frost King, an exiled Norse god with the ability to control entire ecosystems. The heroes triumphed, but victory came at a terrible price, one that has been kept secret until now.

When the Justice League discovers an extinction-level storm at the former site of Superman’s Fortress of Solitude, their search for answers will put them in direct conflict with the Frost King, an ancient entity who wields great power and an army of loyal soldiers. What does he want? And what’s his tie to some of the oldest heroes in the DC Universe?

Justice League: Endless Winter is a crossover event collection that includes Aquaman #66, The Flash #767, Justice League #58, Justice League Dark #29, Justice League: Endless Winter #1-2, Teen Titans: Endless Winter Special #1, Black Adam: Endless Winter Special #1, and Superman: Endless Winter Special #1.

The Verdict

A fantastic follow-up to the multiversal battle of Dark Nights: Death Metal, the series really does an incredible job of highlighting the secret history some of the DC Universe’s oldest figures and powerful foes have with one another, united against a tragic figure in the Frost King. Exploring ancient mythology and cultures, the narrative and contrasting timelines will unite the heroes and highlight how people’s judgments and misperceptions can create the monsters we so desperately fear. A memorable and fantastic series to read, especially with Winter 2021 approaching!

Batman and Robin and Howard by Jeffrey Brown Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

Two young boys find themselves becoming fast rivals after one joins a new school, and they compete to be the most athletic and most educated student in the class. Little does Howard know that the boy he’s competing against is Damian Wayne, son of Batman and known as the costumed hero Robin, in author Jeffrey Brown’s “Batman and Robin and Howard”. 

The Synopsis

Sidelined by a crime-fighting field trip gone wrong, Damian Wayne must refocus his attention on his life as an average student and learning how to be a team player–especially when he meets his match in his new rival, Howard.

To Damian Wayne, there is nothing more important than protecting the streets of Gotham City as Robin. But when he makes a critical mistake while out on patrol, Damian finds himself benched. And what’s more, Damian’s dad, Bruce Wayne–a.k.a. Batman–decides that starting over in a new school will be just the distraction Damian needs from his superhero routine.

Certain that Gotham Metro Academy has nothing to teach him, Damian is completely unprepared for the challenge he finds in Howard–the smartest and most athletic kid in school. The boys’ rivalry is instantaneous and fierce…and both are sure only one of them can be the best in their class.

What follows is a funny story of rivalry, friendship, and mystery from bestselling author and illustrator Jeffrey Brown.

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The Review

This was such a fun and humorous dive into the life of Damian Wayne. From the fumbling father/son relationship he has with Bruce Wayne, aka Batman, to the competitive nature and lone-wolf style mindset he has carried into every facet of his life, and even the detective mindset that he inherited from his father as he is forced to step up to help solve the mystery crimes surrounding soccer teams at schools. The inclusion of Batman lore and mythos into the children’s book narrative and style (as well as incredible children’s artwork), made this story feel equally balanced and engaging for both DC Fans and children’s book readers alike. 

The balance with this humor and lore came with the educational and moral lessons that the story brought upon young readers. From showing how we often don’t get along with those who mirror our worst impulses and instincts, to finding common ground with frenemies and becoming friends instead, to finding balance and letting go a bit of the control we have over our lives, these themes and messages found in the relationship developed between Damian and Howard were amazing to watch unfold and would keep readers enthralled with the growing narrative. 

The Verdict

A thoughtful, entertaining, and brilliant children’s read, author Jeffrey Brown’s “Batman and Robin and Howard”, the latest children’s book in association with DC Comics, is a must-read children’s book of 2021! A gripping and educational read, the book is filled with personal and warm imagery and does a great job of developing their characters so that readers are not only entertained but see themselves in the characters as well. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Jeffrey Brown was born in 1975 in Grand Rapids, Michigan and grew up reading comic books with dreams of someday drawing them, only to abandon them and focus on becoming a ‘fine artist.’ While earning his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Brown abandoned painting and began drawing comics with his first autobiographical book ‘Clumsy’ in 2001. Since then he’s drawn a dozen books for publishers including TopShelf, Fantagraphics, Drawn & Quarterly, McSweeney’s and Chronicle Books. Simon & Schuster published his latest graphic memoir ‘Funny Misshapen Body.’ In addition to directing an animated video for the band Death Cab For Cutie, Brown has had his work featured on NPR’s ‘This American Life’ His art has been shown at galleries in New York, San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles and Paris. Jeffrey’s work has also appeared in the Best American Comics series and received the Ignatz Award in 2003 for ‘Outstanding Minicomic.’

He currently lives in Chicago with his wife Jennifer and their son Oscar.

Teen Titans: Beast Boy Loves Raven (Teen Titans #3) by Kami Garcia (Illustrated by Gabriel Picolo) Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

Two teens coming to terms with their emerging powers must work together when powerful forces try to harness their gifts, and in the process they discover a growing bond between them in author Kami Garcia’s “Teen Titans: Beast Boy Loves Raven”, the third book in the Teen Titans graphic novel series.

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The Synopsis

From #1 New York Times bestselling author KAMI GARCIA (Beautiful Creatures) and artist GABRIEL PICOLO, the creative duo behind the New York Times bestselling graphic novel Teen Titans: Raven, comes the romantic meet-up we have all been waiting for! 

It seems like years, but it’s only been a few days since Raven Roth recovered her memories, trapped her demon father, Trigon, into her amulet, and had her heart broken for the first time. But she doesn’t have time to think about the past…she has to focus on finding a way to get rid of Trigon for good.

Garfield Logan still can’t believe he has powers that allow him to change into different animals, but the price of knowing that his parents kept this secret hidden from him just feels too high. And what’s more, his difficulty controlling these abilities could have unexpected consequences.

Both are seeking answers from the one person who seems to have them all figured out: Slade Wilson.

When their paths converge in Nashville, Raven and Gar can’t help but feel a connection, despite the secrets they both try to hide. It will take a great amount of trust and courage to overcome the wounds of their pasts. But can they find acceptance for the darkest part of themselves? Or maybe even love?

The Review

A truly remarkable new take on a classic friendship turned to romance. The story of these two young people who not only have incredible powers, but who feel like outcasts, as a result, is not only a brilliant modern twist on the iconic character’s origins, but can also be relatable in so many ways. The theme of finding somewhere that you feel you belong, and finding a true connection with someone who not only accepts you but loves every aspect of you, is brilliantly highlighted through emotional storytelling and an even more emotional atmosphere that the author develops through this story.

The artwork was so unique to the world that the author has crafted, and the artist did a brilliant job of creating warm colors within the character’s depictions with more muted and cooled-down colors in the panels’ setting. The character development was great, as it not only delved into several characters and their development, but worked some surprise DC Comics characters into the narrative naturally, and balanced the storytelling with action and suspense that elevated the character’s personal growth.

The Verdict

A beautiful, action-packed, and wholly original narrative set in an iconic universe, author Kami Garcia and artist Gabriel Picolo’s “Teen Titans: Beast Boy Loves Raven” is a must-read graphic novel of 2021! The subtle yet awe-inspiring artwork and the rich storytelling that leaves room for more adventures in this series make this graphic novel shine brightly, and the book makes for the perfect fall read for longtime and new DC Comics fans alike. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Kami Garcia is a #1 New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author. She is the coauthor of the BEAUTIFUL CREATURES series, which has been published in 51 countries and 37 languages, with over 10 million copies in print. In 2013, Beautiful Creatures released as a feature film from Warner Brothers. Kami is a cofounder of the YALLFEST kid lit book festival and the author of five solo novels, including her Bram Stoker Award-nominated novels Unbreakable and Unmarked (THE LEGION series) and The X-Files Origins: Agent of Chaos. Kami’s first graphic novel Teen Titans: Raven, with artist Gabriel Picolo, is the first book in her TEEN TITANS series for DC Comics and the adult series JOKER/HARLEY: CRIMINAL SANITY, from DC Black Label.

Find Kami online at kamigarcia.com, on Facebook @KamiGarciaYA, and on Twitter and Instagram @KamiGarcia.

https://kamigarcia.com/

https://twitter.com/kamigarcia

About the Artist

Gabriel Picolo is a Brazilian comic artist and illustrator based in Sao Paulo. His work has become known for its strong storytelling and atmospheric colors. Picolo has developed projects for clients such as Blizzard, BOOM! Studios, Harper Collins, and DeviantART.

https://twitter.com/_gabrielpicolo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ti-dCU6HyfA

https://twitter.com/DCComics

https://www.amazon.com/Teen-Titans-Beast-Loves-Raven/dp/1779503865/ref=sr_1_1?adid=082VK13VJJCZTQYGWWCZ&campaign=211041&creative=374001&dchild=1&keywords=Teen+Titans&qid=1632699786&s=books&sr=1-1

Here is an Exclusive Preview of the First Few Pages of “TEEN TITANS: BEAST BOY LOVES RAVEN”

Batman: The Audio Adventures Review

In honor of Batman Day, I thought I’d share this incredible new podcast series that DC Comics fans will not want to miss. HBO Max has decided to bring their own creative spin on iconic and classic radio show style programming and fusing the lore and history of DC Comics into the narrative in their latest project, Batman: The Audio Adventures!

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The Synopsis

A tale of life and death in Gotham City. After years of vigilante crime fighting, Batman prepares  to become an official Gotham member of the Gotham City Police Department, deepening the rift between himself and Catwoman, who’s been using Gotham criminals as her personal ATM. Meanwhile, Two-Face is deteriorating, his two halves at war and his obsession with duality out of control — which his rival the Penguin is more than happy to take advantage of. The Riddler, after years in the shadow of Batman’s A-list foes, is desperate to have his work taken seriously. And the Joker has big, big plans for Valentine’s day… #Batman

The Review

I was enthralled with this engaging series from the very start. Having listened to the first couple of episodes, I can say the writers and actors have produced a truly haunting and entertaining series. The actors manage to create a very cinematic quality to this audio series, bringing such a strong energy to the narrative that it crafts an image in the author’s mind as each story within the episodes play out. 

The format of this audio series itself is what really drew me into the story. The creators managed to capture the engaging and entertaining quality of classic radio shows from the 1920’s, crafting imagery of the family surrounding the radios in their home as prolific narrators paint an image of the story in the listeners minds. It also managed to craft a well-rounded insight into Gotham City itself, including commercials and ads that brought the Batman mythos into the story. Gotham’s vibrancy and clash with chilling and gritty imagery comes through perfectly in the delivery of this series, making this series highly creative.

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The Verdict

A memorable, iconic, and mythological new dive deep into the bowels of Gotham City, HBO Max and DC Comics new series, “Batman: The Audio Adventures”, is a brilliant work of art in a new medium that fans of the characters and comics will be able to get behind. Capturing the very noir atmosphere that classic radio shows always had, this series promises to give readers the much-needed dose of Batman they need in this time of isolation in our needed quarantine, and will entertain listeners for sure. If you haven’t yet, listen to the audio series today!

Rating: 10/10

Stream Batman: The Audio Adventures on September 18 on HBO Max: http://itsh.bo/hbo-max

The series stars Jeffrey Wright as Batman, Rosario Dawson as Catwoman, and John Leguizamo as The Riddler, and includes a number of SNL alums and A-List actors. 

Unearthed: A Jessica Cruz Story by Lilliam Rivera (Illustrated by Steph C.) Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

One of DC Comics best and most beloved characters of the past decade takes center stage in an original story that puts her in the midst of the immigration debate as she struggles with whether or not to stay in the United States and strange visions of Aztec gods in author Lilliam Rivera’s “Unearthed: A Jessica Cruz Story”.

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The Synopsis

Acclaimed author Lilliam Rivera and artist Steph C. reimagine one of DC’s greatest Green Lanterns, Jessica Cruz, to tell a story about immigration, family, and overcoming fear to inspire hope.

Jessica Cruz has done everything right. She’s a dedicated student, popular among her classmates, and has a loving family that has done everything they can to give her a better life in the United States. While Jessica is a part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, allowing her to go to school and live in the U.S., her parents are undocumented. Jessica usually worries for her parents, but her fears and anxiety escalate as a mayoral candidate with a strong anti-immigration stance runs for office.

As the xenophobia in Coast City increases, Jessica begins to debate whether it’s worth renewing her status to stay in the U.S., or if her family would be safer and better off moving back to Mexico. And despite her attempts to lean on her friends and family, she finds herself constantly visited by visions of Aztec gods, one pulling her towards hope and the other towards anger.

But when her father is detained by I.C.E., Jessica finds herself being pulled into an abyss of fear. With her father gone and feeling helpless, Jessica must find her way out of her fears and ultimately become a voice for her community. 

The Review

What a powerful and engaging new take on the iconic Green Lantern character. This was a fantastic story that really captured the struggle and strength of the Latino community, especially when the debate over immigration has never been higher in recent years. Jessica Cruz is the perfect character to bring this fight for justice and equality to light, as her DC Comics history played into the battle between fear and hope that her character has embodied since her introduction. As a half-Latino man whose late grandfather came to this country as a young child and built a family of his own through dedication and hard work, the cultural element and the familial bonds that Jessica had not only with her parents but her community as a whole really spoke to me, as these core values are something I was taught at an early age.

The fantastic blend of DC Comics character mythology, history, and Aztec mythology was amazing to see come to life here. The visions that Jessica had really did a great job of highlighting the inner-struggle of her character between fear and hope, and seeing things like side character John Stewart come into play and her father’s lessons really made this story shine brightly. The artwork itself was so engaging, striking amazing contrasts between the light and darkness that Jessica struggled with and which settled over Coast City as immigration and politics took more and more of a prominent role in the community. The warmth that the artwork seemed to invoke really spoke to me and helped convey the message clearly.

The Verdict

A brilliant, heartfelt, and refreshing new take on a personal favorite and iconic DC Comics hero, author Lilliam Rivera and artist Steph C.’s “Unearthed: A Jessica Cruz Story”, is a must-read graphic novel and a contender or graphic novel of the year. DC Comics showcases a brilliant eye for talent as both the artist and the author did an incredible job of relaying a new take on some fan favorite characters and their history while also bringing an important topic and theme to life in a way that can highlight the issues without sacrificing entertainment and relatability. If you haven’t yet, grab your own copy of this amazing story today!

Rating: 10/10

About the Author

Lilliam Rivera is an award-winning author of children’s books including her latest Never Look Back, a retelling of the Greek myth Orpheus and Eurydice set in New York by Bloomsbury Publishing. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, The New York Times, and Elle, to name a few. Lilliam lives in Los Angeles.

https://www.lilliamrivera.com/

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About the Illustrator

Steph C. is a Mexican artist and illustrator mainly know for  her stylish characters that evoque a vibrant sensation within story and design whit a sense of geometry and sharp compositions. My goal is to inspire others through the power of creation!

https://thestephc.weebly.com/

https://www.inprnt.com/gallery/steph_c/

https://www.dccomics.com/graphic-novels/unearthed-a-jessica-cruz-story

DC PRIDE #1 (DC CULTURAL ANTHOLOGIES) REVIEW

DC Pride (2021-) #1 (DC Cultural Anthologies (2021-))

by Andrew WheelerSam Johns (Goodreads Author), Nicole MainesVita Ayala (Goodreads Author), Sina Grace (Goodreads Author), Danny LoreMarc AndreykoMariko TamakiSteve OrlandoJames Tynion IVTamra Bonvillain (Cover Art), Scott Williams (Cover Art), Jim Lee (Cover Art), Luciano Vecchio (Penciller), Klaus Janson (Penciller), Kevin Wada (Penciller), Travis Moore (Goodreads Author) (Penciller), Sophie Campbell (Penciller), Rachael Stott (Penciller), Skylar Patridge (Penciller), Ro Stein (Penciller), Mildred Louis (Goodreads Author) (Penciller), Kris Anka (Penciller), Nick Robles (Penciller), Brittney Williams (Penciller), David Talaski (Penciller), Amy Reeder (Penciller), Stephen Byrne (Penciller), Trung Le Nguyen (Penciller), Ted Brandt (Inker), Rex Lokus (Colorist), Alejandro Sanchez (Colorist), Enrica Eren Angiolini (Colorist), Marissa Louise (Colorist), Dave McCaig (Colorist), José Villarrubia (Colorist)

I am proud to share my review of the brand new collection of PRIDE inspired stories within the DC Universe, featuring some of the greatest LGBTQ DC Heroes around in the new anthology, DC Pride. 

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The Synopsis

DC Pride #1 will feature LGBTQIA+ characters from all corners of DC’s ever-expanding Universe, including cameos by fan favorites Batwoman, Renee Montoya, Alan Scott, Midnighter, Apollo, Extraño, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, Constantine, and more. The DC Pride creative teams, and the characters they’re developing stories for, are:

Batwoman (Kate Kane) by James Tynion IV & Trung Le Nguyen

Poison Ivy & Harley Quinn by Mariko Tamaki & Amy Reeder

Midnighter by Steve Orlando & Stephen Byrne

Flash of Earth-11 (Jess Chambers) by Danny Lore & Lisa Sterle

Green Lantern (Alan Scott) & Obsidian by Sam Johns & Klaus Janson

Aqualad (Jackson Hyde) by Andrew Wheeler & Luciano Vecchio

Dreamer by Nicole Maines & Rachael Stott

Renee Montoya by Vita Ayala and Skylar Patridge

Pied Piper by Sina Grace, Ro Stein & Ted Brandt

Additionally, DC Pride #1 will include full-page profiles of DCTV’s LGBTQIA+ characters and the actors who play them, and fans of The CW’s Supergirl will be thrilled to see the first comic book appearance of Dreamer, a trans woman superhero, in a story written by actor Nicole Maines, who plays Nia Nal/Dreamer on Supergirl.

Rounding out the DC Pride anthology is a forward by Marc Andreyko (Love is Love), single-page pin-ups by artists Kris Anka, Sophie Campbell, Mildred Louis, Travis Moore, Nick Robles and Kevin Wada, with more surprises to come!

The Review

Some of my favorite heroes in the DC Universe are proud members of the LGBTQ community. From the incredible story of Alan Scott trying to bond with his son Obsidian in an attempt to recognize how far the world has come since the days of gay men having to hide in secret bars, to the heartfelt romance of Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, and even the promise of a future league within the DC Universe that celebrates the wide range of LGBTQ heroes that the comic book company has to offer, this collection celebrates a wide range of stories and heroes that showcase not only their PRIDE but of the power and rich stories that they embody. 

However, my personal favorite story within this collection comes from the Arrowverse, which focuses on one of my favorite new heroes and favorite actresses, Dreamer, played by the lovely and incredible Nicole Maines. Her story of fighting for peace and allowing people’s dreams to become a reality was beautifully brought to life with rich artwork and a story that felt both fresh and unique to the character dynamics established in the Supergirl corner of the Arrowverse. Nia is a truly great hero to embody the future of the DC Comics universe, embodying both powerful heroics and in-depth and emotional character development, making her story feel like the future so many of us comic book fans have been waiting so long for.

The Verdict

A memorable, heartfelt, and action-packed comic book anthology comic, DC Comics’s “DC Pride” is a must-read anthology for not only PRIDE month, but for the future of DC Comics. Engaging characters and emotional storytelling make these stories both entertaining and resonate with fans around the world. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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https://www.bookbub.com/books/dc-pride-2021-1-by-andrew-wheeler-sam-johns-nicole-maines-luciano-vecchio-klaus-janson-kevin-wada

Weekly Comic Book Roundup #17

Shazam and the Seven Magic Lands

(Shazam! (2018) (Single Issues) #1-12)

by Geoff JohnsDale Eaglesham (Illustrator), Scott Kolins (Illustrator), Marco Santucci (Illustrator), Mayo “SEN” Naito (Illustrator), Max Raynor (Illustrator), Mike Atiyeh (Colorist), Rob Leigh (Letterer)

The Synopsis 

Legendary comics writer Geoff Johns continues his modern reimagining of Shazam following the hit 2019 Warner Bros. movie starring Zachary Levi.

In these stories, after a stop at the mysterious subway location of the Rock of Eternity, source of his mighty powers, Shazam and his foster siblings take a trip to a series of magical lands including the Funlands and the Wozenderlands. But these dreamlike fantasy worlds hide a nightmarish reality, as the young heroes must face the tyrannical King Kid and try to avoid being fed to hungry tigers. Collects Shazam! #1-12. 

The Verdict

The latest chapter in the world of the Shazam family takes center stage as the reimagining of the character began in the hit Warner Bros. Film Shazam starring Zachary Levi, and it is fantastic! The exploration of the fabled “Magic Lands” and the mythology of the Rock of Eternity was perfectly balanced with the complex family dynamic not only between Billy and his foster siblings but his foster parents as well. Add to this the inclusion of a figure from Billy’s past and the introduction of some powerful new foes from these new lands, including the diabolical King Kid, as well as some well-established threats from Shazam’s past, make this series a shining example of DC’s future. 

Made in China – DC Universe Rebirth

(New Super-Man #1)

by Gene Luen Yang (Goodreads Author) (Writer), Viktor Bogdanovic (Artist), Richard Friends (Inker), Dave Sharpe (Letterer)

The Synopsis

#1 New York Times best-selling author and National Book Award nominee Gene Luen Yang continues his work at DC with New Super-Man, Volume 1, a part of DC Universe: Rebirth!

An impulsive act of heroism thrusts an arrogant young man into the limelight of Shanghai as China begins to form its own Justice League of powerful heroes. As the government creates their own Superman, will they live to regret the person they’ve chosen? Rising from the ashes of Superman: The Final Days of Superman and the death of the Man of Steel, will this New Super-Man step up to the challenge, or be crushed under the weight of his hubris and inexperience?

Award-winning writer Gene Luen Yang (American Born ChineseSuperman) and on-the-rise art star Viktor Bogdanovic (Batman: Arkham Knight) introduce readers to Kong Kenan, an all-new superhero who could change the world…or be the end of it, in New Super-Man, Volume 1.

CollectingNew Super-Man 1-6 

The Verdict

A truly fantastic new era of storytelling in DC Comics, a powerful new Chinese superhero is born in this first volume of The New Super-Man. Kong Kenan stands out because, unlike his American counterpart, the hero is just an average teenager with a complex family dynamic and a troubling worldview that can make him unlikable more times than not. However the comic highlights not only his rise to becoming a hero and gaining powers but his evolution as a character and person as he becomes acclimated to this world. His abrasive nature can be seen softening often in the face of injustice and heartbreak and promises a future for Kong Kenan that can make him a true force for good. Include this with Bat-Man and Wonder-Woman, and not only does the book become a narrative on Western influences on Eastern nations, but how competitive and high-stakes the governments of the world become with one another, often with their citizens caught in the crossfire on both sides. A truly great story and an excellent new cast of characters for the DC Universe.

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Daredevil by Chip Zdarsky, Vol. 1: Know Fear

(Daredevil by Chip Zdarsky #1)

by Chip ZdarskyMarco Checchetto (Illustrations)

The Synopsis

Matt Murdock has clawed his way through physical therapy, but his near death experience that nearly left him crippled has left its mark on him. Reacquainted with pain and fear, the devil is back in hell’s kitchen, but is the man who returned to the rooftops the same man who fell off them? Find out, in CHIP ZDARSKY’S new era of DAREDEVIL!

COLLECTING: DAREDEVIL (2019) 1-5

The Verdict

Great use of Daredevil’s character, Marvel has taken one of their most self-critical and perpetually guilt-ridden characters to examine the concept of accountability and examination of who the true “villains” are in the world, let alone criminal “elements”. The character’s struggle with injuries and realigning his abilities as a crimefighter take a dark turn, and Matt is forced to examine how he approaches his life as a hero and protector of Hell’s Kitchen, as well as learning to find acceptance and peace after being part of some great loss. The action and morality that Daredevil has become known for is a masterful turn of events for Marvel and a much-needed story in today’s landscape. A must-read at Marvel!

King Deadpool, Vol. 1: Hail to the King

(King Deadpool #1)

by Kelly Thompson (Goodreads Author), Chris Bachalo (Illustrations)

The Synopsis 

A new era begins for the Merc with a Mouth! Deadpool’s newest job has him going after the King of Monsters, who has claimed a new kingdom for his terrifying subjects…on Staten Island! But you know what they say, when you come at the king, you better not miss! Soon, Wade Wilson finds himself with a new role – one that leaves him neck deep in political intrigue, with major obstacles including Captain America and the monster-hunting Elsa Bloodstone in his way! Will Deadpool’s smooth charisma and deft diplomacy allow him to keep his head – or will he be royally screwed? Heavy hangs the head that wears the crown – particularly when it’s in the sights of some of the deadliest people in the Marvel Universe!

COLLECTING: DEADPOOL (2019) 1-5

The Verdict

A chilling yet still hilarious and unbelievable chapter in the world of Deadpool, readers are treated to a whole new side to the Merc as his latest job puts him in the role of becoming the King of the Monsters, who have come to State Island and made it their home as refugees. His humor and gritty fighting are a great play against the more structured and honored society that the kingdom of the monsters has crafted for itself, and the inclusion of Elsa Bloodstone in the series has paired Wade with a strong and fierce ally and foe throughout the series. 

S.W.O.R.D. by Al Ewing, Vol. 1

(S.W.O.R.D. #1)

by Al EwingValerio Schiti (Art)

The Synopsis

One giant leap for mutantkind! The new nation of Krakoa has quickly become a major force on the world stage…but why stop there? The X-Men have relaunched the Sentient World Observation & Response Directorate — a fully independent organization dealing with all things extraterrestrial on behalf of Earth. And S.W.O.R.D. is thrown right into the deep end of a planetary crisis as Krakoa battles the invading King in Black! Meanwhile, Abigail Brand prepares a deniable operation all her own. What is Protocol V — and can the Earth survive it? Then, walk a mile in the Manifold’s shoes as S.W.O.R.D.’s Quintician takes a journey across the universe — and comes face to face with a deadly enemy! And as the Quiet Council discuss the rules of murder on Krakoa, in space the killings have already begun…

COLLECTING: S.W.O.R.D. (2020) 1-6 

The Verdict

A much-needed balance of cosmic storytelling and Earth-based heroics, the new iteration of SWORD comes straight out of the events of Empyre and the new era of X-Men comics. The new team comes together to explore alien politics and protection against cosmic threats just in time for the arrival of Knull, and the balance of threats at home and off-world is highlighted when looking into the nation of Krakoa’s influence on the new SWROD program. Getting one-on-one interaction with characters like Brand and Manifold made this new series shine brightly. 

Guardians of the Galaxy by Al Ewing, Vol. 1: Then It’s Us

(Guardians of the Galaxy by Al Ewing #1)

by Al EwingJuann Cabal (Illustrations)

The Synopsis

Once they were a team of misfits. Now they’re a family, and they’ve earned their peace. But the universe is not a peaceful place – and it’s only getting worse. The Great Empires are in turmoil. The rule of law is dead. And amid the chaos, the gods of Olympus have returned – harbingers of a new age of war, reborn to burn their mark on the stars themselves. Someone has to guard the galaxy – but who will accept the mission? And will they survive it?

Al Ewing (IMMORTAL HULK) and Juann Cabal (FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN) bring you in on the ground floor of a whole Marvel Universe of action and suspense!

COLLECTING: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (2020) 1-5 

The Verdict

It wouldn’t be a Guardians series if there wasn’t some cosmic threat bearing down on the universe, and yet the foes thrown in their path are quite a shock to behold. From the introduction of a deadly pantheon of gods on the warpath throughout the galaxy to the shocking loss of a major character early on in the series and the introduction of not one but two new iterations of the Guardians make this series a true delight. The weight of loss hits them all hard, but the action and humor the team always brings to the table is enhanced by both members old and new and makes this new series a true must-read for all longtime Marvel fans. 

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Spider-Woman, Vol. 1: Bad Blood

(Spider-Woman (2020) (Collected Editions) #1)

by Karla PachecoPere Pérez (Art), Paulo Siqueira (Art), Jung-Geun Yoon (Cover Art)

The Synopsis

Spider-Woman is back, and she’s pulling no punches! But Jessica Drew hasn’t been feeling like herself lately. When the angry, irritable, and unwell Spider-Woman takes a simple security gig to help get back on her feet, she finds herself suddenly besieged by unknown forces out to destroy everything around her. What’s wrong with Jessica? Just how did she get this job? Who are these violent lunatics who keep trying to blow her up? What does her illness have to do with the daughter of her old nemesis Otto Vermis? And how does a shipment of black-market spiders fit in? Jessica Drew is fighting for her life while someone pulls her strings, in an explosive new adventure that takes Spider-Woman to new heights!

COLLECTING: SPIDER-WOMAN (2020) 1-5

The Verdict

I am a longtime fan of Jessica Drew, and her evolution in recent years has been great to see. The dark new road that she is forced to go down is both relatable and classic heroic storytelling at its best. Her decision to take on odd jobs to help pay for her child is something many can relate to, and yet her journey leads her to discover more haunting secrets of her past, as well as a haunting illness that threatens not only her but possibly her son as well. The further down the path she is forced to go down, the more chilling her evolution, which makes for some incredible storytelling for Jessica and her friends and allies. A must-read for longtime fans of Spider-Woman.

King in Black

(King in Black: Collected Editions)

by Donny CatesRyan Stegman (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Knull is coming, and when he arrives, everyone from the Avengers to the X-Men will learn just how unprepared they are to face off against the God of the Symbiotes. Everything in Cates and Stegman’s landmark run on VENOM has led up to this monumental story, and readers will finally witness Eddie Brock’s climatic standoff with one of Marvel’s most terrifying villains. 

The Verdict

The last couple of years’ worth of storytelling of Venom, aka Eddie Brock, have been some of Marvel’s strongest yet. The introduction of this cosmic god of the symbiotes was an inspired choice, and Knull has officially become one of Marvel’s most deadly foes in years. The shocking turn of events upon his arrival to Earth hits readers like a ton of bricks. The evolution of Eddie Brock and the introduction of a powerful new cosmic threat make this a must-read event for Marvel Comics. 

Atlantis Attacks

(Atlantis Attacks #1-5)

by Greg Pak (Goodreads Author), Ario Anindito (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

The armies of ATLANTIS face ATLAS in a showdown destined to shake allegiances and break hearts! AMADEUS CHO, SILK, WAVE, SHANG-CHI, and all the heroes of the Atlas have bonded with each other after the challenges of WAR OF THE REALMS. But when a terrible secret incurs the wrath of KING NAMOR, who’s the true friend — and who’s the true enemy? A titanic tale of love and betrayal, heroes and monsters, gods and underdogs — plus the shocking return of JIMMY WOO and the original AGENTS OF ATLAS!

COLLECTING: ATLANTIS ATTACKS (2020) 1-5

The Verdict

Namor proves once again why he is such a formidable foe in the Marvel Universe. With the weight of an entire kingdom at his back, the King of Atlantis showcases the terror of the sea against the forces of ATLAS. This team of heroes must not only contend with Namor but with a shady backer of their work, and the incredible artwork and focus on one of the most needed yet unexplored corners of the Marvel Universe makes this a truly fantastic book.

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Black Cat, Vol. 4: Queen in Black

(Black Cat by Jed Mackay #4)

by Jed Mackay

The Synopsis

Felicia Hardy is back for a classic game of cat and…symbiote? Knull’s attack on Earth interrupts the Black Cat’s latest heist, and if you know Felicia, you know that’s a problem. So the Cat and her crew aim to steal something of great value — both to Knull and to Earth’s hope of survival! But Felicia never shows up inappropriately dressed  — and a job like this requires a special kind of suit. You won’t believe it when the Black Cat gets her own Anti-Venom costume! Felicia Hardy returns to center stage in an action-packed adventure guest-starring the X-Men, Captain America and Doctor Strange! 

COLLECTING: Black Cat (2020) 1-5 

The Verdict

Felicia proves once again why she is one of Marvel’s best-underrated characters. Her balance of heroism and thievery makes her an instant hit with fans, while her command of heroism in the face of Knull’s arrival on Earth plunges her into a cosmic and magic adventure that puts her unique skills to the test. Running against Knull’s army alongside the likes of the Avengers and more of Earth’s heroes highlights the struggles of the everyday heroes in the face of this great cosmic foe. This is a must-read for any fans of Black Cat and the King in Black event. 

Weekly Comic Book Roundup #16

Legion of Super-Heroes, Vol. 1

(Legion of Super-Heroes (2019) #1)

by Brian Michael BendisRyan Sook (Illustrator), Wade Von Grawbadger (Illustrator), Jordie Bellaire (Colorist), Travis Moore (Goodreads Author) (Illustrator), Mikel Janín (Illustrator), Scott Godlewski (Illustrator), Jim Lee (Illustrator), Dustin Nguyen (Illustrator), Andrea Sorrentino (Illustrator), André Lima Araújo (Illustrator), Scott Williams (Illustrator), Alex Sinclair (Colorist), John Kalisz (Colorist), Dave Stewart (Colorist), Nikola Scott (Illustrator), Jim Cheung (Illustrator), Jeff Dekal (Illustrator), Tomeu Morey (Colorist)

The Synopsis

The future of the DC Universe is NOW! Join superstar writer BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS and visionary artist RYAN SOOK for an all-new incarnation of a legendary superhero team!

One thousand years into the future, a new generation of young heroes has gathered, inspired by the actions and lessons of the greatest heroes of the past. They are the Legion of Super-Heroes, and they’re here to stop the universe from repeating its past mistakes.

But by inducting the 21st century’s Superboy, Jonathan Kent, into the Legion, they’ve broken the United Planets’ cardinal rule: never, ever mess with the time stream. Now, they’ve placed themselves in the crosshairs of the powers that be.

Origins will be revealed. Secrets will be uncovered. Friendships will be forged–and shattered. New members of the Legion will be inducted–including Superboy’s best friend Damian Wayne, a.k.a. Robin!

And one thing’s for certain: the future is not what it used to be!

This bold new reinvention of an iconic DC franchise unleashes fresh, new reader-friendly stories! Guest-starring a legion of special guest artists, including JIM LEE, JIM CHEUNG, NICOLA SCOTT, ANDREA SORRENTINO, and more, this first volume collects Legion of Super-Heroes: Millennium #1-2 and Legion of Super-Heroes #1-6!

The Verdict

A thrilling new chapter in the future DC Universe, the return of the Legion of Super-Heroes is a much needed addition to the company. Introducing Jon Kent to the future heroes was a great welcome, and the amount of detail and mythos the writers unveiled made this a masterful story that blends the past and the future into one cohesive story.

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Naomi: Season One

(Naomi #1-6)

by Brian Michael BendisDavid F. WalkerJamal Campbell (Illustrations)

The Synopsis

When a fight between Superman and Mongul crashes into a small northwestern town, Naomi begins a quest to uncover the last time a super-powered person visited her home–and how that might tie into her own origins and adoption.

DC’s biggest, newest mystery starts here!

Follow Naomi’s journey on a quest that will take her to the heart of the DC Universe and unfold a universe of ideas and stories that have never been seen before. Join writers Brian Michael Bendis, David Walker and breakout artist Jamal Campbell in Wonder Comics’ massively ambitious new series and star…Naomi!

Aimed at providing readers with honest and innovative reading experiences, Brian Michael Bendis’ Wonder Comics is a celebration of the moments of in life when discoveries are made – when purpose and meaning are revealed and destinies are defined. Featuring the young heroes of the DC Universe as penned by all-star creative teams in exciting new adventures that will celebrate the wonders of life, love and comics.

Collects Naomi issues #1-6. 

The Verdict

A fantastic new story and an even more amazing new hero for the DC Universe, the series is the perfect start to the newest chapter of the character. Naomi is destined for greatness in the DC Universe, and the blend of her origin story with her connection to the multiverse and the beautiful artwork the story included made this a thoroughly enjoyable read. 

Batman and the the Outsiders, Vol. 1: Lesser Gods

(Batman and the Outsiders (2018) #1)

by Bryan Edward HillDexter Soy (Illustrations), Cian Tormey (Illustrations), Veronica Gandini (Colors), Adriano Lucas (Colors), Clayton Cowles (Letters), Carlos M. Mangual (Colors)

The Synopsis

When the quest for justice drives Batman into morally ambiguous territory, he calls in the most moral man he knows: Jefferson Pierce, a.k.a. Black Lightning, and his team of elite operatives known as the Outsiders!

Several years ago Batman personally put the Barrera family into hiding after they suffered through terrible experiments at the hands of an organization called The Ark. Now all but one of them has turned up dead … and Batman needs to locate Sofia Barrera before the wrong people get their hands on her–and her surprising power! But it wouldn’t be Batman without a hidden agenda, would it? And when Black Lightning, Katana, the Signal and Orphan find out what Batman is really up to, their very loyalty will be called into question!

Get ready for an intense, action-packed thrill ride from author Bryan Hill and artist Dexter Soy in Batman and the Outsiders Vol. 1!

Collects Batman and the Outsiders #1-6. 

The Verdict

A gritty and amazing new chapter in the world of The Outsiders. Black Lightning shines as the series star, reluctantly leading this group of vigilante heroes as he grows as a hero himself. Leading next to Katana, Jefferson Pierce is a great character and perfectly matches Bruce Wayne’s Batman in both leadership and wit. Orphan and Signal are great additions to the team, and the series villain is a welcome return for a classic DC villain. A must-read for DC Comics fans.

The Terrifics, Vol. 1: Meet the Terrifics

(The Terrifics #1)

by Jeff LemireEvan Doc Shaner (Illustrator), Ivan Reis (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

A billionaire genius. A shape-shifting wise guy. An intangible alien. An elemental powerhouse. At first glance, these four heroes have nothing in common. But when Plastic Man, Phantom Girl, Metamorpho and Mr. Terrific are thrown together by fate, they become something greater than the sum of its parts…something truly terrific!

Unleashed by a tragic accident, supernatural forces have bound this unlikely team together, stranding them deep in the nightmare realm known as the Dark Multiverse. Now they must learn to work together to find a cure for their condition, a pathway home…and a missing hero who just might hold the key to it all.

But something even deeper than their shared plight binds them together. In each of these incredible characters, the spirt of exploration and the hope for a better tomorrow burns so brightly that not even the black magic of the Dark Multiverse can snuff it out!

Join the journey in The Terrifics Vol. 1: Meet the Terrifics. The all-star creative team of Jeff Lemire, Ivan Reis, Evan “Doc” Shaner and Joe Bennett usher in a new age of heroes with the most talked-about team book of the year!

Collects The Terrifics #1-6.

The Verdict

A wonderful blend of zany, off-the-wall humor and action with cosmic-level storytelling and a fantastic blend of characters, The Terrifics have quickly taken over as the DC Universe equivalent of the Fantastic Four, bridging science with heroism as four individual heroes are forced to stick with one another to help battle a threat of multiversal proportions. The artwork is reminiscent of a blend of classic and modern looks, and the return of heroes like Plastic Man and Mr. Terrific make this a must-read for the DC Universe.

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Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy

(Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy #1-6)

by Jody Houser (Goodreads Author), Adriana Melo (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

During the catastrophic events of Tom King’s Heroes in Crisis, Poison Ivy was killed, and Harley Quinn holds herself responsible. But when Poison Ivy is resurrected, Harley decides to take care of her best friend, who is now evolving into a creature who is as much flora as she is fauna. Bad-girl BFFs Harley Quinn and Poision Ivy are back togther–but what happens when a newly reformed Harley discovers that Ivy has gone full-on evil?

Harley has also been pardoned from the Suicide Squad, so even if the killings at Sanctuary during the events of Heroes in Crisis hadn’t already inspired her to be better, the need to stay out of Belle Reve gives her added incentive to stay on the straight and narrow.

What, then, is she to do when Poison Ivy reveals she’s had enough of the humans who not only killed her, but are destroying the environment day by day? Can Poison Ivy entice Harley to join her in the plant world, or will Harley have to prove herself by stopping whatever plot Ivy is cooking up?

From critically acclaimed author Jody Houser comes a story of two best friends fighting over good and evil. Collects Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy #1-6

The Verdict

Such a fun yet emotional miniseries for one of DC’s favorite couples, the series does a great job of blending Harley’s penchant for humor in the face of danger with the confusion Ivy is feeling after her resurrection during the events of Heroes in Crisis. The emotional toll on each of these characters as Harley misses the love of her life while Ivy searches for her place in the world makes for a beautiful if not tragic story and the attacks from allies and foes alike make this a must-read miniseries for the company.

Flash Forward

(Flash Forward #1-6)

by Scott LobdellBrett Booth (Illustrator), Norm Rapmund (Illustrator.)

The Synopsis

When the border between the Multiverse and the Dark Multiverse starts to buckle, Wally West must answer the call and journey to these worlds and purge them of this darkness, but the greater darkness is that from within.

His name is Wally West–and he was the Fastest Man Alive. That is, until the Multiverse was rewritten without him or his family in it. Wally returned and tried to make it work, but the damage was done. Spinning out of the events of Heroes in Crisis, follow the man who called himself Flash on an adventure to find redemption in a cosmos that has fought so hard to destroy him.

Collects Flash Forward #1-6, Generation Zero: Gods Among Us Special Edition #1

The Verdict

For any fan of The Flash and Wally West, in particular, this is the story you need to read. The story feels not only like a redemption arc for the very lost and tragic hero of the Rebirth era but feels like a return to the more upbeat and self-assured Wally that fans know and love in many ways. The multiverse has never been more alive than in this story, and the threats and allies Wally makes along the way all help lead into the Dark Nights: Death Metal event. 

Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen

(Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen #1-4)

by James Tynion IVSteve Epting (Illustrator), Javier Fernández (Illustrator), Scott Snyder (Goodreads Author), Brian Michael BendisJim Cheung (Illustrator), Alex Maleev (Illustrator), Francis Manapul (Illustrator), Nick Filardi (Colorist), Tomeu Morey (Colorist)

The Synopsis

DC’s “Year of the Villain” leaps into a new phase as the ultimate battle between Lex Luthor and the Batman Who Laughs rages–and the heroes of the DC Universe are forced to take sides in this epic struggle.

Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen ties together some of DC’s biggest epics of 2019, including The Batman Who Laughs, Batman/Superman, and DC’s “Year of the Villain,” which ran across numerous titles. In this collected edition, Lex Luthor faces off against the Batman Who Laughs. On the one side are Luthor’s forces of injustice–and on the other are the Batman Who Laughs’ agents, known as the Infected…corrupted versions of heroes including Supergirl, Shazam, Commissioner Gordon and others. Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen also sets the stage for the next phase of DC’s “Year of the Villain” and beyond.

This title collects the five-issue miniseries Year of the Villain: Hell Arisen.

The Verdict

This is the perfect culmination of so many of DC’s stories during the Year of the Villain event. Luthor’s battle with the Batman Who Laughs makes for one of the biggest villain fights in DC Comics history, at least for the villains of the multiverse. The scary reality of how far the Batman Who Laugh’s dark infection has spread among the DC Universe is explored here, as is the power that Luthor has finally achieved. The ultimate villain is crowned, and the fate of the multiverse hangs in the balance by the book’s end.

Batman: Damned

(Batman Damned #1-3)

by Brian AzzarelloLee Bermejo (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

New York Times bestselling graphic novel!

The Joker has been murdered. His killer is a mystery. Batman is the World’s Greatest Detective. But what happens when the person he is searching for is the man staring back at him in the mirror?

THE JOKER IS DEAD.

There is no doubt about that. But whether Batman finally snapped his scrawny neck or some other sinister force in Gotham City did the deed is still a mystery.

Problem is, Batman can’t remember…and the more he digs into this labyrinthine case, the more he starts to doubt everything he’s uncovering.

So who better to set him straight than…John Constantine?

The problem with that is as much as John loves a good mystery, he loves messing with people’s heads even more. So with John’s “help,” the pair will delve into the sordid underbelly of Gotham as they race toward the mind-blowing truth of who murdered the Joker.

Batman: Damned is a groundbreaking supernatural horror story told by two of comics’ greatest modern creators: Brian Azzarello (Dark Knight III: The Master Race, 100 Bullets) and Lee Bermejo (Hellblazer, Joker).

This hardcover volume collects Batman: Damned #1-3 and features a behind-the-scenes extras gallery with an afterword by Brian Azzarello.

NOTE: Enhanced cover will only be on first printing copies!

The Verdict

A grim yet amazing horror story set within the gritty world of Batman, the partnership between Constantine and Batman is a welcome addition to the Dark Knight’s tale. This Elseworld style story sees some of Gotham’s and DC’s magical world in some new light, and the shocking loss of The Joker sends Batman down a hellish road that breaks into some of the amazing horror tales that DC Comics houses. A must-read miniseries. 

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DCeased: The Unkillables

(The Unkillables #1-3)

by Tom Taylor (Goodreads Author), Karl Mostert (Illustrator), Trevor Scott (Inker), Neil Edwards (Inker), John Livesay (Inker), Rex Locus (Colorist), Saida Temofonte (Letterer)

The Synopsis

Discover what the villains of the DC Universe did during the events of DCeased!

From the hit series DCeased comes a villain’s story about survival during the zombie apocalypse!

Vandal Savage hasn’t lived for thousands of years without being prepared. Seconds after the virus breaks out, he has already made contact and begun to assemble a team of people to help him ride out the end of the world. Some of the world’s greatest mercenaries and fighters are brought to his side, all tasked to protect Savage. All Vandal can offer them is survival.

Collects DCeased: The Unkillables #1-6.

The Verdict

A bloody and chilling new chapter in DC’s DCeased series, the Unkillables does an excellent job of exploring some of DC’s most ruthless anti-heroes and villains, as well as some of the more resilient humans and heroes who have learned to adapt to this cold new world. The shocking turn of one of DC’s most powerful and iconic heroes into the Anti-Life Virus’s most deadly drone makes the series scare factor level up, and the grim and haunting artwork adds to the series dark setting. 

DCeased: Dead Planet

(DCeased (Collected Editions) #2)

by Tom Taylor (Goodreads Author), Trevor Hairsine (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Five years after the end of the world…anti-life goes on in this sequel to the smash-hit series DCeased.

The survivors of the infected apocalypse that ravaged Earth in the pages of DCeased have found a haven on a second Earth. The Justice League rebuilt with new members–Damian Wayne, Jon Kent and Cassie Sandsmark–and for the most part, life is good. Until a faint signal is received that is coming from the planet everyone had fled five short years ago…

Somehow Cyborg is transmitting a message–he survived, and there might be a cure! Suspecting a trap, but with too much on the line, the new Justice League must make their way home to the dead planet to see what awaits them and who is left to be saved!

The Verdict

The shocking sequel to DCeased is a fantastic chapter in this new world of the DC multiverse. The surviving heroes of the DC Universe return to their doomed world years after the events of DCeased, finding a still living Cyborg and a host of undead heroes and civilians alike. Working alongside the survivors of Earth, the heroes work to stop not only the Anti-Life Virus and cure those infected but must stop a host of other threats, from a shocking cabal of villains and a demonic threat that could destroy Earth once and for all. John Constantine, the new Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman, and Cyborg all shine in this story, as does the gritty artwork of this series. A must-read for fans of the original miniseries.

Winter Soldier: Second Chances

(Winter Soldier (2018) #1-5)

by Kyle Higgins (Goodreads Author), Rod Reis (Illustrations)

The Synopsis

Bucky Barnes believes in second chances. Having survived death, manipulation, loss of identity and a lifetime of murder, the man known as the Winter Soldier has worked hard to atone for his many sins. But now…he’s going to go one step further. What do you do after you’ve found redemption? You help others do the same! Bucky is becoming a “fixer,” working to help others leave behind their lives of crime. It’s his way of channeling his own pain in a productive, personal way…by helping others find the salvation that he has found. But not all paths are the same – and not everyone can be saved… COLLECTING: WINTER SOLDIER 1-5

The Verdict

A great chapter in the life of Bucky Barnes, this series blends the gritty reality of Bucky’s life as the Winter Soldier with the hope and heroism that Cap inspired in his friend. Bucky’s trip to save people seeking a new life away from crime is a heartfelt welcome, as is the new cast of characters who begin throwing themselves in his path. The artwork brings to life the espionage and grim nature of Bucky’s world to life perfectly, making this a must-read. 

Falcon & Winter Soldier: Cut Off One Head

(Falcon & Winter Soldier #1-5)

by Derek LandyFederico Vicentini (Illustrations)

The Synopsis

An office of dead government agents. A gifted new killer. Two ex-Captain Americas…When a dramatic attempt on the life of Bucky Barnes reunites him with Sam Wilson, the two old friends are plunged headlong into a race to uncover the new leader of Hydra before a mass casualty event announces the terror group’s resurgence to the world. The clock is ticking…

COLLECTING: FALCON & WINTER SOLDIER (2020) 1-5

The Verdict

This book does a great job of exploring the relationship between Bucky and Sam while also introducing a humorous yet deadly group of new villains looking to delve into the HYDRA organization. The shocking revelation of one villain leads to the shocking civil war erupting within the organization, and the two heroes find themselves caught in the middle. A great new story in the life of both heroes.

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Ironheart, Vol. 1: Those With Courage

(Ironheart (2018) #1)

by Eve L. Ewing (Goodreads Author), Luciano Vecchio (Illustrator), Kevin Libranda (Illustrator), G. Geoffo (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Riri Williams, the armored hero called Ironheart who took the comics world by storm, takes center stage! When a group of world leaders is held hostage by one of Spider-Man’s old foes, Riri must step up her game. But she’s thrown for a loop when an old acquaintance from back in Chicago re-enters her life! Now, Ironheart is caught between her need for independence and her obligations at M.I.T. – and when an old friend is kidnapped, she needs to make some tough decisions! Luckily, Riri has a will of steel, a heart of iron…and a brand-new A.I. system on her side! CHAMPIONS artist Kevin Libranda joins award-winning poet Eve L. Ewing, as Ironheart steps boldly out of Tony Stark’s shadow to forge her own future!

COLLECTING: IRONHEART 1-6 

The Verdict

A great new chapter in the Iron Man corner of the Marvel Universe, Riri Williams proves herself to be a fantastic and exceptional hero all her own. Her brilliance and need to help others make her a worthy successor to the legacy Tony Stark has built and her bumpy road between heroism and her personal life gives a whole new perspective for the character and the Marvel Universe as a whole that is so needed in the world right now. 

Empyre: X-Men

(Empyre (Collected Editions))

by Jonathan Hickman (Writer), Gerry Duggan (Goodreads Author) (Writer), Benjamin Percy (Goodreads Author) (Writer), Tini Howard (Writer), Leah Williams (Goodreads Author), Ed BrissonVita Ayala (Goodreads Author), Zeb WellsMatteo Buffagni (Illustrations), Lucas Werneck (Illustrations), Andrea Broccardo (Illustrations), Jorge Molina (Illustrations), Adriano Di Benedetto (Illustrations), Nolan Woodard (Color Artist), Rachelle Rosenberg (Cover Artist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer)

The Synopsis

Alien plants versus mutant zombies! Plant people from outer space have come to Earth as part of the cosmic events of EMPYRE – but wouldn’t you know it, they happen to arrive just as millions of deceased mutants rise from the grave as undead creatures hungry for human flesh! What are the odds? And can even the X-Men handle two simultaneous crises? The X-Men return to the graveyard island of Genosha in a tale so crazy, it’s taking the entire writing crew of the Dawn of X line to tackle it! COLLECTING: EMPYRE: X-MEN (2020) 1-5 

The Verdict

One of the new era of X-Men’s first major crossover events in the Marvel Universe, getting to see the iconic mutant heroes fighting against a group of magical plant-like warriors from space is the perfect story for the X-Men. The artwork is phenomenal, and the overall crossover connection is perfectly balanced with the individual stories of the X-Men as a whole, making this a great addition to the X-Men’s new and growing mythos. 

Weekly Comic Book Roundup #15

Batman/Superman, Vol. 1: Who are the Secret Six?

(Batman/Superman (2019) #1)

by Joshua WilliamsonDavid Marquez (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Batman teams up with the Man of Steel to track down and help those who have been infected by a ravenous, mutated Joker virus. Just one problem: they don’t know who they are.

A virus is spreading, and it’s not just after innocent people, but some of our most powerful heroes as well. The biggest question isn’t why or how, but who?

The Batman Who Laughs was one of the premier villains crawling his way from the depths of the Dark Multiverse and wreaking havoc on the DC Universe. Now he has been infecting some of the biggest heroes across the world with a mutated version of the Joker virus that is coursing through him.

Cue the team-up of two of the greatest superheroes in history: Batman and Superman. They decide to work together to find out who is infected and hopefully cure them before it’s too late.

Collects: Batman/Superman (2019) #1-6.

The Verdict

Two of DC’s biggest heroes must face the might of the Dark Multiverse as the Batman Who Laughs begins to infect the heroes of the DC Universe. The shocking twists and turns as the Infected are revealed showcase the power that the new villain has, while the Infected themselves reveal the impact both heroes have had on the larger DC Universe as a whole. A great deep dive into the growing darkness plaguing the multiverse as a whole, with incredibly visceral artwork and amazing writing overall.

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Tales from the DC Dark Multiverse

(Tales from the Dark Multiverse #1-5)

by Scott Snyder (Goodreads Author), Kyle HiggensJeff LovenessTim Seeley (Goodreads Author), James Tynion IVMat Groom (Goodreads Author), Javier Fernández (Illustrator), Brad Walker (Illustrator), Drew Hennessy (Illustrator), Norm Rapmund (Illustrator), Kyle Hotz (Illustrator), Dexter Vines (Illustrator), Walden Wong (Illustrator), Danny Miki (Illustrator), Aaron Lopresti (Illustrator), Matt Ryan (Illustrator), Tom Raney (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

DC has delivered some of the most influential and ground-breaking stories in comic’s history with titles such as The Killing JokeIdentity CrisisThe Death of Superman and much more. Now after the events of Dark Knights: Metal, a gateway into the Dark Multiverse has opened and its stories revealed.

Featuring top talent authors and artist, Tales from the DC Dark Multiverse is going beyond the Multiverse and diving deep into the dark with new timelines and altering the defining moments in DC history. What are the consequences if The Joker’s aim had hit James Gordon instead of Barbara? What would the DC Universe look like?

Tales from the DC Dark Multiverse is a hard cover format collecting alternating stories of the DC Universe, reprinting DC Dark Multiverse Batman: Knightfall #1, DC Dark Multiverse Death of Superman #1, DC Dark Multiverse Blackest Night #1, DC Dark Multiverse Infinite Crisis #1, DC Dark Multiverse Teen Titans: The Judas Contract #1, Batman #497, Superman #75, Blackest Night #1, Infinite Crisis #1, and Tales of the Teen Titans Annual #3.

The Verdict

For years DC Comics fans have asked themselves, what would happen if the major events of the DC Multiverse had gone to the villains instead of the heroes? These stories explored in the Dark Multiverse showcase how even the smallest change could make the deadliest impacts on these events, from saving the life of a former Justice Leaguer to the death of a universe and so much more. The artwork really harkens back to the days these events were first explored, and the writing really highlights the darkness that has enveloped these worlds. A true must-read event.

Year of the Villain: The Infected (DC’s Year of the Villain

(Year of the Villain (Collected Editions))

by Marc AndreykoRobert Venditti (Goodreads Author), Sina Grace (Goodreads Author), Dennis HopelessEduardo Pansica (Artist), Pat Olliffe (Artist), Joe Bennett (Artist), Freddie E. Williams II (Artist)

The Synopsis

Following his hit mini-series, The Batman Who Laughs has forcibly enlisted six heroes of the DC Universe to become his agents, gifted with mighty powers and infected with his evil.

Year of the Villain: The Infected spins out of the hit miniseries The Batman Who Laughs and tells the tales of four superheroes who are reborn as the Infected…corrupted versions of some of DC’s greatest heroes who were gifted with extraordinary new powers–but whose souls have been blackened by the evil of the Batman Who Laughs. The heroic lives of Shazam, the Blue Beetle, Gotham City’s Commissioner Jim Gordon and former Teen Titan Donna Troy are all transformed by the Batman Who Laughs. Now they are pawns in his efforts to destroy the heroes of the DC Universe–whether they want it or not! This title collects The Infected: King Shazam! #1, The Infected: Scarab #1, The Infected: Donna Troy, Deathbringer #1 and The Infected: Gordon, the Commissioner #1.

The Verdict

It is every hero’s worst nightmare to become the very thing they loathed: a villain. Exploring the Batman Who Laughs and his reign of terror turning the heroes of the DC Universe into monstrous versions of themselves, these issues really do a great job of delving into the underlying fears and doubts these heroes have, which leads to the infection taking hold much faster within them. The artwork captures the dark descent of these heroes, and the writing really does a great job of exploring these heroes and their darker halves. 

Justice League Odyssey, Vol. 1: The Ghost Sector

(Justice League Odyssey #1)

by Joshua WilliamsonStjepan Šejić (Illustrator), Philippe Briones (Illustrator), Carmine Di Giandomenico (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

When a cosmic menace threatens worlds beyond our own in the Ghost Sector, it falls to a new Justice League team to answer the call to battle! Cyborg, Starfire, Green Lantern Jessica Cruz and an out-of-his-element Azrael head to deep space inside a commandeered Brainiac Skull Ship.

Spinning out of JUSTICE LEAGUE: NO JUSTICE comes Joshua Williamson’s amazing new series Justice League Odyssey! This ragtag team of new recruits will face threats in the deep reaches of space like no League ever before! First up? These wild-card teammates try to stop Despero from slave-trading Coluan refugees, only to discover something that nothing in the universe could have prepared them for: Darkseid…who says he’s there to help?!

Written by Joshua Williamson (The Flash) with unbelievable illustrations from Stjepan Sejic (Aquaman), Justice League Odyssey takes the World’s Greatest Super Heroes to places they’ve never been before! Collects issues #1-5.

The Verdict

A fantastic new spin-off to the Justice League team, this new series takes readers into truly uncharted territory within the larger DC Universe. The Ghost Sector brings entire civilizations lost to time and Brainiac’s actions back into the fold. The uneasy relationship between the heroes Jessica Cruz (who is the shining star of the series), Starfire, Azrael, and Cyborg makes for interesting dialogue and character developments, as does the reemergence of Darkseid. Forced to join the villain to save the Ghost Sector, the heroes must watch their backs against new and old foes alike. Amazing artwork that captures the cosmic nature of the story and wonderful writing make this an instant hit. 

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DCeased: Hope At World’s End

by Tom TaylorDustin Nguyen (Artist), Rex Lokus (Artist), Ben Oliver (Cover Artist)

The Synopsis

The Anti-Life Equation has infected over a billion people on Earth. Heroes and villains have fallen. In the immediate aftermath of the destruction of Metropolis, Superman and Wonder Woman spearhead a plan to try to stem the tide of infection, preserve and protect survivors, and develop a plan for what’s next. In the Earth’s darkest hour heroes will bring hope! 2019’s blockbuster series, DCEASED, makes its digital first debut with stories set before the fall of Earth!

The Verdict

A must-read for any fans of DCeased, the hit zombie-apocalypse DC Comics event that rocked the multiverse. Before the Trinity and most of Earth’s heroes fell, there was a fight for survival that went on behind the scenes. From the fall of anti-hero Black Adam to the last survivors of cities like Metropolis finding a safe haven and the formation of the new Trinity of Damian Wayne, Jonathan Kent, and Cassie Sandsmark, these tales really help flesh out the DCeased world and bring a lot of heart into the story. Really gritty artwork and powerful storytelling make this a great read.

Event Leviathan

(Event Leviathan #1-6)

by Brian Michael BendisAlex Maleev (Illustrations), Greg RuckaMatt FractionMarc AndreykoYanick Paquette (Illustrator), Mike Perkins (Illustrator), Steve Lieber (Illustrator), Eduardo Pansica (Illustrator), Julio Ferriera (Illustrator), Nathan Fairbairn (Colorist), Paul Mounts (Colorist), FCO Plascencia (Colorist), Joshua Reed (Letterer), Dave Sharpe (Letterer), Simon Bowland (Letterer), Clayton Cowles (Letterer), Tom Napolitano (letterer), Troy Peteri (Letterer)

The Synopsis

The groundbreaking creative team of bestselling author Brian Michael Bendis and artist Alex Maleev reunite for a mystery thriller that will bring the DC Universe to its knees! The world’s greatest detectives race to solve the mystery of Leviathan only to discover that this time, they’re already too late. Leviathan is in control.

With startling ease, a newly dangerous and aggressive secret organization called Leviathan has returned and has been systematically wiping out all its competition. The ways of the old world no longer work. Now Leviathan is turning its sights to molding the world into its own radical vision of order. Can this new threat’s growth be stopped? Join Lois Lane as she leads Batman, Green Arrow, Plastic Man, Manhunter, the Question along with a couple of surprise sleuths in the search of the man who sits behind the cloak of Leviathan. But will whoever find him first capture him…or join him?

Brian Michael Bendis (Miles Morales: Ultimate Spider-Man, Superman, Daredevil) and Alex Maleev (Infamous Iron Man, Scarlet, Spider-Woman) weave their unique blend of crime noir to rock the DC Universe to its core in their latest masterpiece that will be talked about for years to come!

Collects Superman: Leviathan Rising #1, Event Leviathan #1-6, & DC’s Year of the Villain Special #1

The Verdict

A great way of bringing a classic whodunnit mixed with a spy thriller kind of setting into the DC Universe. Seeing heroes like Batman, Green Arrow and the Question working together as some of the best thinkers and investigators in the DC Universe as this new threat of Leviathan rises to face the might of Superman and other heroes is a comic book fan’s dream, and the impact of some of DC’s biggest organizations, from the DEO to Checkmate and even Amanda Waller herself being targeted by Leviathan makes this a truly shocking story. With great twists and turns, including the identity of Leviathan’s leader, and grim and gritty artwork make this a fantastic addition to the Year of the Villain storytelling. 

Heroes in Crisis

(Heroes in Crisis #1–9)

by Tom King (Goodreads Author), Clay Mann (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

There’s a new kind of crisis threatening the heroes of the DC Universe, ripped from real-world headlines by CIA-operative turned comics writer Tom King: How does a superhero handle PTSD?

Welcome to Sanctuary, an ultra-secret hospital for superheroes who’ve been traumatized by crime-fighting and cosmic combat. But something goes inexplicably wrong when many patients wind up dead, with two well-known operators as the prime suspects: Harley Quinn and Booster Gold! It’s up to the DC Trinity of Superman, Wonder Woman and Batman to investigate–but can they get the job done in the face of overwhelming opposition?

Superstar comics writer and former CIA operative, Tom King (Batman, Mister Miracle) examines the potential long-lasting effects of saving the world in this groundbreaking new graphic novel with jaw-dropping art from the team of Clay Mann and Lee Weeks!

Collects Heroes in Crisis #1-9

The Verdict

A powerful and emotional read, this was an impactful story for the DC Universe. Set before the events currently rocking the multiverse, this story sees the heroes in their most vulnerable position yet. Exploring the mental health aspect of being a hero and the events they witness as they battle threat after threat was a unique approach to this story, and pitting two unlikely characters as the main suspects for the story’s big plot (the death of several heroes at this mental health facility), Booster Gold and Harley Quinn, really put a lot of emphasis on the concept of outcasts and underdogs, as the true nature of what happened at Sanctuary begins to come together and shock readers. This is what I would consider an essential DC Comics read for anyone looking for great character-driven narratives. 

Heroes in Crisis: The Price and Other Tales

(Heroes in Crisis #Companion)

by Joshua WilliamsonJulie Benson (Goodreads Author), Shawna Benson (Goodreads Author), Collin KellyJackson LanzingGuillem March (Illustrator), Rafa Sandoval (Illustrator), Javier Fernández (Illustrator), Scott Kolins (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

Tom King’s event of the year – Heroes in Crisis – has rocked the DC heroes to their core. While the events at Sanctuary play out in Heroes in Crisis (now available in a collected Hard Cover edition), Batman and the Flash work together behind the scenes to solve a mystery surrounding the death of Wally West. But can they solve the case before turning on each other?

An old case has reopened, and it’s up to the DCU’s top detectives to solve it! Gotham Girl is missing, and it will take both Batman and The Flash working together to find out where she’s gone … and if she has anything to do with the horrifying events at Sanctuary.

Though old friends, the case and the disturbing events surrounding it, are tearing Batman and the Flash’s friendship apart. Both Batman and the Flash have lost their sidekicks, will they also lose each other?

Contains Batman #64-65, The Flash #64-65, Green Arrow #45 and #48-50, and The Flash Annual #2.

The Verdict

Seeing the larger ramifications for the heroes after the events of Heroes in Crisis was a remarkable narrative to get sucked into. The relationship between Batman and The Flash after what has happened was interesting to see, as they are not only two of the greatest detectives in DC Comics, but have had a mutual respect for one another over the years. Plus, the Rebirth era has seen these two characters become more connected than ever before, making this an incredible character study of the heroes. Plus, seeing Green Arrow’s reaction to losing someone close to him and his outcast status to the larger Justice League made for some interesting commentary on the League’s relationship to the universe as a whole. A definite must-read and entertaining event. 

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The End

(The End #1-6)

by Saladin Ahmed (Goodreads Author), Kelly Thompson (Goodreads Author), Joe KellyLeah Williams (Goodreads Author), Erik LarsenAdam WarrenCarmen Carnero (Illustrations), Mike Hawthorne (Illustrations), Damion Scott (Illustrations), Filipe Andrade (Illustrations), Chamba (Illustrations)

The Synopsis

Mighty Marvel heroes reach the bitter end! Steve Rogers fights for survival in a post-apocalyptic wasteland populated by hordes of Red Skulls! Captain Marvel returns after 50 years in space – but what has become of the world she once called home? Deadpool seems unkillable – but death will find a way! Doctor Strange makes his final journey home – through a cyberpunk sprawl where magic is forgotten! Miles Morales leads civilization’s last stand in the one place strong enough to survive – Brooklyn! And Venom travels the length of space and time as the last defender of life in the universe! Experience the end as your favorite heroes take their final bow!

COLLECTING: CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE END, CAPTAIN MARVEL: THE END, DEADPOOL: THE END, DOCTOR STRANGE: THE END, MILES MORALES: THE END and VENOM: THE END.

The Verdict

A stunning look at possible futures for the Marvel Universe. Endings which see the last surviving heroes each faced with their own brand of apocalypse, and the heroic sacrifices they must make in order to save the world that is left. Each story feels unique and tailored for the heroes who star in each story, and this provides a perfect continuation of what iconic series like the “What If…?” stories told throughout Marvel’s history. A must-read comic book event for modern and classic Marvel enthusiasts alike!

X-Men by Jonathan Hickman, Vol. 1

(X-Men (2019) #1)

by Jonathan HickmanLeinil Francis Yu (Illustrator), Gerry Alanguilan (Goodreads Author) (Illustrator), R.B. Silva (Illustrator), Matteo Buffagni (Illustrator), Sunny Gho (Colorist), Marte Gracia (Colorist)

The Synopsis

THE DAWN OF X BREAKS! The X-Men find themselves in a whole new world of possibility… and things have never been better! Jonathan Hickman (HOUSE OF X, POWERS OF X, SECRET WARS) and superstar artist Leinil Yu (NEW AVENGERS, CAPTAIN AMERICA) reveal the saga of Cyclops and his hand-picked squad of mutant powerhouses!

COLLECTING: X-MEN (2019) #1-6

The Verdict

It’s an all new era for X-Men fans. Getting to see the mutants of the Marvel Universe finally have their own nation and independence is a refreshing new sight, as is seeing Cyclops back into a leadership role. Getting to see the entire family together as well, from Jean and Scott to Cable and Rachel Summers and more, the relationships really define the new status quo of the mutant nation of Krakoa. The artwork harkens back to a late 90’s/early 2000’s style and lends itself well to the storyline being told, showcasing the fight to maintain order and peace for the growing mutant nation. A must-read!

Road to Empyre

(Empyre (Collected Editions))

by Al EwingDan SlottRobbie Thompson

The Synopsis

Get ready for EMPYRE – the cosmic saga set to rock the Avengers, the Fantastic Four and the entire Marvel Universe! A mysterious murder brings together an army of heroes in the search for a killer – setting the stage for the conflicts to come! When everything suddenly changes for the Kree and Skrull empires, that leaves the Warner family from MEET THE SKRULLS out in the cold on Earth. They need to work out how this cosmic crisis affects the future of their family – and their race! And that means Mom and Dad educating their kids on just how the Kree and the Skrulls first went to war! Plus: Get all the facts on the major players in this epic event with the official handbook to EMPYRE!

COLLECTING: INCOMING (2019) 1, ROAD TO EMPYRE: THE KREE/SKRULL WAR (2020) 1, EMPYRE HANDBOOK (2020) 1

The Verdict

This collection explores the unthinkable in the Marvel Universe: a peace between the Kree and the Skrulls. Not a temporary alliance or a cease-fire, but a true end to the war, brought together by a new ruler for both people, Emperor Hulkling, the half-Kree, half-Skrull hero of Earth. Exploring the origins of the war, how it’s come to end, and the threat that has brought them together, this is a deep dive into the Marvel Universe like never before. A truly-great lead up into the Empyre saga. 

Empyre

(Empyre (Collected Editions))

by Al Ewing (Writer), Dan Slott (Writer), Valerio Schiti (Artist), Pepe Larraz (Artist), R.B. Silva (Artist), Marte Gracia (Color Artist)

The Synopsis 

Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and Marvel’s First Family star in an intergalactic event that threatens to reshape the Marvel Universe! Old allies make a distress call to the Avengers with news of a terrible enemy that could wipe out humanity itself. The Celestial Messiah has returned – but is Earth ready to hear his message? Meanwhile, in the most unlikely of places, the Fantastic Four witness the final conflict of the Kree/Skrull War…and a long-hidden Elder of the Universe stands revealed! With the Kree and the Skrulls united under a new emperor, their war fleet charts a course – for Earth! The Avengers are ready to fight, while the FF seek a diplomatic solution. But if the two teams can’t work together to save the day, Earth may not survive…

COLLECTING: EMPYRE: AVENGERS 0, EMPYRE: FANTASTIC FOUR 0, EMPYRE 1-6, EMPYRE EPILOGUE

The Verdict

A truly fantastic Marvel Universe cosmic event, the writers at Marvel have weaved a truly one of a kind story that not only sees the Kree and Skrull united under one banner but somehow makes a race of magic-practicing plant people feel like a true threat to the planet. The struggles of the Avengers and their allies as former allies become foes and foes become allies make this story complex and engaging, and the artwork is just beautiful. A true must-read Marvel event!

Captain Marvel, Vol. 1: Re-Entry

(Captain Marvel (2019) #1)

by Kelly Thompson (Goodreads Author), Carmen Carnero (Illustrator), Tamra Bonvillain (Colors)

The Synopsis

ALL THE STARS ALIGN AS KELLY THOMPSON AND CARMEN CARNERO TAKE ON MARVEL’S PREMIER FEMALE SUPER HERO!

As Captain Marvel, Carol Danvers has spent months in space protecting Earth from alien threats big and small, but now it’s time for Earth’s mightiest hero to come home. New York City has never looked so good. But every re-entry comes with the unexpected, and Carol is about to hit a whole lot of unexpected. It’s a fresh start and an oversized, star-studded welcome home for a hero who’s been punching the glass ceiling since the 1970s – and just in time for the first female-led film from Marvel Studios! The next 50 years of Captain Marvel starts here!

COLLECTING: CAPTAIN MARVEL 1-6

The Verdict

This is a great start to a new series featuring one of Marvel’s most powerful heroes. After years of defending Earth from cosmic threats, she is finally setting her boots back on Earth and getting ready to face the everyday threats. Her never-give-up attitude and heroics are what makes Carol such an iconic and inspirational hero for many Marvel fans, and both the artwork and story reflect this. What really shines through is that one of the early villains of this new series brings to light the struggle for women to break through and be seen as equals and not dependent on a male figure, making her fight against him all the more important. This is a new start that is not to be missed!

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Star Wars, Vol. 1: Skywalker Strikes

(Star Wars (2015) #1)

by Jason AaronJohn Cassaday (Illustrations), Kieron GillenLaura MartinChris EliopoulosStuart Immonen (Illustrator), Ángel Unzueta (Illustrator), Mike Mayhew (Illustrator), Leinil Francis Yu (Illustrator), Terry Dodson (Illustrator), Jorge Molina (Illustrator), Mike Deodato (Illustrator), Salvador Larroca (Illustrator), David Marquez (Illustrator)

The Synopsis

The greatest space adventure of all returns to Marvel!

Luke Skywalker and the ragtag rebel band opposing the Galactic Empire are fresh off their biggest victory so far–the destruction of the massive Death Star. But the Empire’s not toppled yet! Join Luke, Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca, C-3PO, R2-D2 and the rest of the Rebel Alliance as they fight for freedom against the evil of Darth Vader and his master, the Emperor! But when a Rebel assault goes very wrong, Han and Leia will have to think fast to make their escape–while Luke finds himself face-to-face with Darth Vader! In the explosive aftermath, a humbled Luke returns to Tatooine to learn more about his mentor Obi-Wan Kenobi. Meanwhile, Leia and Han undertake a vital–and dangerous–secret mission. But can they succeed without Luke? Plus: the menace of Boba Fett!

COLLECTING: STAR WARS 1-6

The Verdict

Longtime Star Wars fans are going to absolutely love this series! Getting to explore the era of Star Wars lore that wasn’t seen in the films, fans are able to see the early start to Luke, Han and Leia’s alliance and missions after the events of the original film. With Luke seeking a means of mastering his Jedi skills to Leia taking a true leadership role after her father and planet’s loss, and Han struggling to be the smuggler he’s always been and the hero he was always meant to be, this series has excelled in writing and the artwork really captures the adventurous nature of George Lucas’s franchise. A must-read!