The week of Wednesday the twenty-second of November, BOOM! releases eleven titles, eight of which are licenses. Two of the latter are softcover collections: The Deep and Dark Crystal v.1 (hardback) each collect four issues, though The Deep is one finished story and Dark Crystal an ongoing venture. Of the creator-owned books, Giant Days is a Special, The Unsound wraps up, and Lumberjanes continues ever-onwards.
WWE #11— Roman Reigns is grumpy in Paris. Enter: John Cena, with a word of wisdom and a nice cathartic muscle-tussle. Terrific use of the ol’ catchphrase in this one, thank you for your bold, apt corniness, Dennis Hopeless, and some nice likeness work from Serg Acuna though the first seven pages, penciled by Tim Lattie, mean Cena’s face suffers uniquely. This is made up for by Lattie’s cute and character-appropriate choices of tableau, as below.
The Unsound‘s final issue, six of six, is… well, it ends. It’s the last issue and it stops after the usual amount of pages. Jack T. Cole’s art is very, very attractive; scarecrow lines and candy acid colour with painterly application and an eye for page design. Jim Campbell’s letters give effective pitch to the dialogue. It’s very eighties, in that special Horror way. Look forward to Gretchen Felker-Martin’s full reviews of this mini.
In Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #21, the team chafes at Zordon’s secret-keeping, in that “superhero team led by a big bald genius” way. They’re also introduced to the secret organisation led by the Red Ranger of 1969 (a woman, as discussed), and while this introduction is happening, a woman scientist tells a ranger that they’re “brighter” than expected. But she says it to Zach, who wears black, so… that was a bad choice. This issue is a little disturbing, as the Rangers are shown a man who thinks he’s a man, but who turns out to be a created, disguised monster implanted with human memories— which they have to kill, nine times, after he changes into “Mr Meowgi,” a cat-headed hydra. They say “kill” and they chop off his heads, etc. It’s oddly brutal. Ferrier and Bachan’s backup strip is fun, and gorgeous.
Big Trouble in Little China: Old Man Jack #3 has a lot of pretty nice variant covers; they’re all frameable if you’re a fan of the source movie (and have the right size of frame). Nice art, good likenesses, cute jokey reference stuff. The dialogue in this issue is about a million times less annoying than in the last one, to me personally, so I was very pleased. Thank you, John Carpenter & Anthony Burch, for your newfound restraint.
Lumberjanes #44 stay tuned for your monthly Lumberjanes columnist to take the reins on reviewing this one— it’s the end of a three-issue “time tree” arc.
Giant Days Special 2017: Look, friends— it’s been a hard month. In a hard year. I am going to show myself some love, and give myself the gift of not reading this issue until it shows up in my comixology app, and even then, not until I have a big cup of tea and a giant freakin’ biscuit. You are precious to me, reader, but I am more precious to me. As such, I choose a review hiatus, for pleasure reasons. Follow my lead: give yourself a treat. because—
Rugrats #2… I can’t do it. I can’t do it. You know better than me whether you want to chance a Rugrats comic. Godspeed.
Emily Lauer takes the stage for Steven Universe #10:
In this issue, Connie has been assigned to observe different animal species for her Biology homework, and she and Steven set out to do just that. At first, Amethyst tries to use her shapeshifting abilities to provide Connie and Steven close observations of animals, but they explain to her that while she can change her shape, she cannot provide them with authentic observations because she doesn’t understand the animals enough to act like them. Connie and Steven set out without her to observe real animals, and Amethyst, offended, tries to figure out why her shapeshifting isn’t “good enough” for them. Eventually they all meet up again, and there is a predictably gentle and heartwarming conclusion addressing what they have all learned about nature, observation, and identity.
A bunch of new episodes of the Steven Universe television show just dropped, and the show’s visual representation of these characters has changed a bit, which means this comic’s depiction of Connie, for instance, looks significantly younger than she now does on the tv show. That is a bit disconcerting, but not a dealbreaker: the comic is still charming in its own right, and I can easily envision the events of this issue being inserted into a previous season of the show.
Snoopy is a compilation of Snoopy comics. Some from Schultz, some not. You like dogs? Here’s $14.99’s worth of’em.
BOOM! started putting letterer info (and colourists! I think that’s new too?) in the solicit info available on their press site, for copy/paste practicality. Bless them. Bless them!
WWE #14, long subject of my ire for featuring a main story about the “Women’s Evolution” (what?) written and drawn by not-women, has announced a backup strip about Japanese superstar and NXT smash-hit champion Asuka, written by—luckily—Tini Howard. Hyeonjin Kim will drawing it; Kim at least is a proven success in the art of drawing women as motivated humans first, decorative objects second. Howard says:
“My story follows Asuka from her debut in NXT to RAW where she is today. I can’t help but love Asuka—she’s a larger-than-life character that has captivated the WWE Universe around the world.”
If you like evil Father Christmases, you’ll be excited to know that Morrison & Mora’s Klaus continuation, this December, will provide just that. If you just like a Frank Quitely cover, ditto. A Cassaday option is also on the cards. The press release for this includes the sentence “acclaimed reimagining of the Santa Claus origin story” and like, what? The what? Fuckin’ comic books, man.