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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

GeekRecs: Comics Releasing on 10/22

We know walking into your local comic shop or browsing the new titles on Comixology can be harrowing, particularly with the rising prices of comics. The GeekRex team feels your pain, so that's why each week two members of our team will collaborate and highlight the "must-buys" of every Wednesday, and we'll make sure we keep the tab under 20 bucks. Props to MultiversityComics for coming up with the great idea–we hope you like our spin on it!

This Week's Team: Cal and Kyle

Arkham Manor #1 - $2.99
The great Batman reimagining of 2014 continues! After the success of the excellent Gotham Academy and Batgirl, DC continues to push its Batman line in some interesting new directions with Arkham Manor. While this lacks the immediate hook of the other two titles, Gerry Dugan's series promises a concentrated look at Gotham's most notorious cast of characters. I'm not sure how I feel having them move into Wayne Manor - because, why? - but I'm at least intrigued enough to check it out.

Multiversity: The Just #1 - $4.99
Multiversity up to this point has been a wild ride, with the Society of Superheroes from last month making for a heck of a high-bar to clear, but Grant Morrison's latest look at superhero pop-stardom should be well worth the read. Basically, it's a spiritual sequel to All Star Superman (having come from an initial pitch that spun off that seminal work). The sons of Superman and Batman now operate in a world without crime, what do they do now? They become teen magazine fodder of course! With Ben Oliver on pencils, its hard to imagine this not being a home-run.

She-Hulk #9 - $2.99
Charles Soule's excellent run on She-Hulk continues with its third arc, which will put the titular heroine in a battle against old friend Matt Murdock (aka Daredevil) in the courtroom. Tying the book to both Daredevil and Captain America is a savvy move for Soule's struggling book, but honestly you should be picking this up regardless. Soule's book hasn't lost its quick wit, but it's managed to build a slim but interesting mystery in the background.

The Wicked + The Divine #5 - $3.50
Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie wrap up the first arc of their odd new Image title with its fifth issue. The first arc was clearly intended to introduce us to a world in flux as it dealt with a pair of outsiders investigating the murder of a judge by a woman claiming to be Lucifer, but Gillen and McKelvie have been focusing more and more on the weird world of the gods as the series has continued. I'm genuinely interested to see how they conclude this first arc, and where the series goes from here.

Zero #11 - $2.99
There's so little else to be said about this title that we haven't already said at some point in the past. But, Zero is one of Image's best books and Ales Kot's on-going changing artistic collaborators adds another wrinkle of visual intrigue for a book that's already pretty high concept. We're back in Iceland this month, I'll be curious to see if it follows on directly from the events of Issue #10, a first for the series. Will we continue the non-chronological slant that's marked the series thus far? It is the most unpredictable book on the stands.

Total Price: $17.46

Pick of the Week

Zenith: Phase 1
By Grant Morrison and Steve Yeowell

We feel a bit crummy recommending this one, knowing the background behind it, and the lack of financial remuneration that is headed towards its creators (though at this juncture, it may have already been addressed by all parties). Regardless, this is the first time in many a decade that Grant Morrison's first major comic work, Zenith, has been made available for mass consumption. 

The gist of the story: Zenith is a teenage pop star superhero, and the only one left from a generation of World War II and 60's era costumed adventurers. Zenith, as you could imagine, spends with nights with booze, women, and lots of drugs (it is a Morrison comic after all). Eventually he receives a calling from some of the earlier superheroes to take on a villainous force called "The Many-Angled Ones" (a very Cthulhu type threat), and is resistant before finally joining the fight. Basically, it's a mix of 80's pop star criticism, alt-history, Lovecraftian mythos, and superhero deconstruction. What sets Zenith apart from its contemporaries like Watchmen and The Dark Knight Returns is that its approach is more in line with Morrison's heavy indebtedness to comic creators like Brendan McCarthy and Peter Milligan.

In many ways, Zenith is the comic that more accurately predicted the direction that Morrison's career would take, far beyond the more pedestrian beginnings of Animal Man (as beloved as that run is) and into the pop art leanings of Doom Patrol
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