I’ve always been of the opinion that there’s a great comic book out there for everyone. I love making recommendations to folks – especially new readers – and helping them grow a love for one of America’s unique forms of literature.
So, let me tell you what to read this week.
Hit 1957 #1
Writer: Carlson, Bryce
Artist: Del Rey, Vanesa
Cover Artist: Del Rey, Vanesa
WHY WE LOVE IT: Hit: 1955 was one of our favorite original series of 2013, a dark, violent dive into the depths of 1950s corruption in Los Angeles featuring the writing of Bryce Carlson and the debut of Russ Manning Award for Most Promising Newcomer nominee Vanesa R. Del Rey. We couldn’t wait to take another Hit! WHY YOU’LL LOVE IT: The next entry in the Harvey Awardnominated series, Hit: 1957, takes us later in the seminal decade of change for the LAPD-familiar faces, new threats, and more sharp, smart noir. Even if you missed out on the first series, if you’re a fan of crime comics like Parker, Criminal, and Tumor, Hit is in your wheelhouse. WHAT IT’S ABOUT: Crime is down in Los Angeles-at least, on the surface. Mickey Cohen has been quiet since his release from prison and the LAPD has seemingly regained control of the city. But the underground is a different story. Det. Harvey Slater and company have spent the last two years focused on Domino and his Syndicate’s unrelenting infiltration, but no matter how many people the hit squad kills, the real fight for Los Angeles rages on. Meanwhile, Slater’s being hounded by Internal Affairs, Bonnie Brae is missing, and everything is falling apart at the seams.
I missed out on reading Hit: 1955. That being said, I had no problem jumping in on Hit: 1957 and getting sucked into this world of crime. It reminds me a bit of Brubaker and Phillips’ Fatale without the supernatural bit. The artwork is incredible as well. Hit: 1957 is definitely on my radar after this first issue.
March of the Crabs
Writer: de Pins, Arthur
Artist: de Pins, Arthur
Cover Artist: de Pins, Arthur
WHY WE LOVE IT: At Archaia, we love bringing great comics from all over the world to English-speaking audiences, stories they would never get to see otherwise (see The Killer, Okko, Toppi’s The Collector, and others). When we read French title March of the Crabs by animator Arthur De Pins, we knew right away we had to add it to our list! WHY YOU’LL LOVE IT: Arthur De Pins’ art style is a slick, fun tribute to Art Deco, something rarely seen in comics. The story of a hapless species of crab is an endearing look at one of nature’s cruel jokes, but made light by a humorous presentation with likable characters, reminiscent of films like Ice Age and Finding Nemo. WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT: For centuries, the square crab has only been able to move side-to-side in one direction. But some brave crabs decide it’s time for revolution! A few of the brave crustaceans in an estuary on the French coastline decide it’s time to try and actually turn for once, but what does their evolution revolution mean for the human race?
Cancer simplicimus vulgaris…The marbled crab. The only species that can only move in one direction. In this French graphic novel, we meet a crab determined to do something with his seemingly insignificant life. His struggle is compelling, and the mixture of light-hearted humor and abysmal environment makes for a fun read. The ending is so chilling, by the way.
Low Vol. 1
Writer: Remender, Rick
Artist: Tocchini, Greg
Cover Artist: Tocchini, Greg
Millennia ago, mankind fled the earth’s surface into the bottomless depths of the darkest oceans. Shielded from a merciless sun’s scorching radiation, the human race tried to stave off certain extinction by sending robotic probes far into the galaxy, to search for a new home among the stars. Generations later, one family is about to be torn apart, in a conflict that will usher in the final race to save humanity from a world beyond hope. Dive into an aquatic fantasy like none you’ve ever seen before, as writer RICK REMENDER (BLACK SCIENCE, Captain America) and artist GREG TOCCHINI (Last Days of American Crime) bring you a tale mankind’s final hour in the cold, deathly dark of the sea. Collects LOW #1-6
Low blew me away when I read it. Already a fan of Remender’s Black Science and Deadly Class, I was prepared for Low’s heavy story, emotional punches, and downright uncomfortable moments. Paired with Tocchini’s dream-like art, Low puts you right in the middle of the conflict underseas. Stel is an interesting character, and I love her unapologetic optimism in regards to life. This is a mature title; the first volume of the series contains strong language, violence, and nudity. Great for older Iggles, not so great for younger Iggles.
Roche Limit Vol. 1
Writer: Moreci, Michael
Artist: Malhotra, Vic
Cover Artist: Malhotra, Vic
‘Our destiny is the stars, and I will lead us there.’ Twenty years after this promise, billionaire Langford Skaargard’s dream of cosmic exploration is no more. Roche Limit, a colony situated on the cusp of a mysterious energy anomaly, is a melting pot of crime and terrible secrets. When Bekkah Hudson goes missing, the search to find her will plunge her sister and a cadre of the colony’s underworld figures into an odyssey that reveals a grim future for mankind. Presenting the first part of the sold-out, critically-acclaimed sci-fi trilogy! Collects ROCHE LIMIT #1-5
This is certainly an interesting series. Space has always been fascinating to people, but Roche Limit shows what happens to humanity when thrust into the lawless world of space colonization. Think a little smidge of Firefly and a lot of drugs and corruption. The first volume provides pages of background material worth checking out; it gets you in the mood of the story and adds a whole other layer to the situation presented.
Wayward Vol. 1
Writer: Zub, Jim
Artist: Cummings, Steven
Cover Artist: Cummings, Steven
IMAGE COMICS’S NEW SUPERNATURAL SPECTACULAR! ‘If Wayward isn’t the next Saga, it will be a damn criminal shame.’ -Bleeding Cool Rori Lane is trying to start a new life when she reunites with her mother in Japan, but ancient creatures lurking in the shadows of Tokyo sense something hidden deep within her, threatening everything she holds dear. Can Rori unlock the secrets of her power before it’s too late? JIM ZUB (Samurai Jack, SKULLKICKERS) and STEVE CUMMINGS (Legends of the Dark Knight, Deadshot) team-up to create an all-new Image supernatural spectacle that combines the camaraderie and emotion of Buffy with the action and mystery of Hellboy. Collects WAYWARD #1-5
Ok, hear me out. This series is amazing. Half-Japanese woman moving in with her mom in Tokyo, meets up with crazy cat-lady, learns she has some sort of power, starts fighting evil. The volume is fast-paced, and Zub and Cummings mix the light-hearted fun with some pretty heavy stuff. Plus, there are yokai all over this volume. Wayward is ideal for grown-up fans of magical girl manga and anime.
That’s it for this week’s pull list! If you have any recommendations for comic fans (and non-fans) out there, share them in the comments section!