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Monday, May 23, 2016

Best Covers of the Week, Vol. 127

Aloha, Hawaiian Dick #2
by Sean K. Dove

When I was young, I spent a lot of time trawling through piles of used paperbacks in Half-Price Books and library book sales, and good, pulpy crime thrillers of a certain era... well, you could tell the second you looked at the cover. Sean K. Dove's cover for Aloha, Hawaiian Dick #2, a Pacific neo-noir, captures that feeling perfectly and adds a unique regional flair that tells me exactly what to expect -- and catches my eyes with its evocative colors.

Daredevil #8
by Bill Sienkiewicz 

Bill Sienkiewicz on Elektra is always going to catch my attention, at least for a moment, but I still think this cover stands out. The under-detailed helicopters and skyline give it a loose, surreal feeling, while the colors make it feel like the city is burning around our two leads as they embrace. It feels bleak, fatalistic, and just a little romantic - the perfect combo for a good Daredevil book. It loses points, however, because it looks awful once Marvel has slapped the giant logo and barcode and credits and corporate seal on it. This one needs to breathe.

 Divinity II #2
by Tula Lotay

Honestly, we could just have a standing Tula Lotay spot in these sections, because she kills it damn near every time. Look at these colors - the vibrant yellows and greens, a streak of bright red blood and lipstick undercutting it all. This doesn't tell me much about the book itself, but as an exercise in color and mood, this may be the week's most evocative.

Doctor Strange #8
by Chris Bachalo
As we established last week, I'm a sucker for minimalism. The chilly colors here are nicely offset by the brightly colored figure of Strange falling through the sky, and the cover's orientation to the side for its title and grounding makes it a surprisingly disorienting cover. Is disorienting good? I don't know, man, I just want to feel something. Anything.

Jem and the Holograms #15
by Sophie Campbell

This one is all color and attitude, the pink-and-green standing out against the stark black background. Campbell did a good job of giving the characters a dead-eyed look that makes them look genuinely eerie and threw some pink splotches on there to give it a playfully grimy feeling.

Monstress #6
by Sana Takeda

While I tend towards favoring minimalism, Sana Takeda's covers of Monstress often favor hyper-detailed, fantasy-inspired art with a muted color palette. It looks like nothing else on the shelves, and Takeda's talent for design-work helps her craft impeccably-built fantastical tableaus. The gate in the background, the eye falling in the 'N' of the title, the blood in the background, the corruption spreading up the unicorn - there's a thousand things going on here, but they work together very well.

Superman: Lois and Clark #8
by Lee Weeks

Obviously, there are a lot of covers that contrast the gritty urban crime thriller of Batman with the high-flying sci-fi optimism of Superman, so finding a novel approach to it can be tough. I think Lee Weeks did an excellent job, though, centering his cover on the alleys and smokestacks of gotham city, Superman only present as his shield offers a brief respite from the darkness. Batman himself looking up into the sky, rather than down into the city, is a nice little touch here, too.

Weirdworld #6
by Mike Del Mundo

Mike Del Mundo illustrated a phenomenal Elektra book for Marvel a couple years back, and ever since, he's an artist I keep an eye out for whenever I can. His cover for Weirdworld #6 shows why. The beige-and-blue color palette is uncommon, and notice the way Del Mundo captures the lone, wistful figure in the center in a series of progressively smaller frames - the cover, then the plants, then the planet, then the blue continent. Each one traps the figure a little bit more, as it gazes out beyond its limitations. Lovely work.

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