Hello again, comic book adventurers. It’s me Rosie, back once more with your regular Dynamite comics roundup. We here at Women Write About Comics are dedicated to unpacking the complex parts of the industry and unwrapping the underwhelming gift that is comics so we can all enjoy/despair about it together! So here we are, with our second monthly collection of all things that are going on at Dynamite Entertainment, home of the sexy variant cover, unexpected creative team, and occasionally great licensed comics.
????Welcome to Rosie’s Dynamite Round Up????
This month’s solicits are most interesting, because I feel like I never understood how many fucking variant covers Dynamite do?!? I mean they’re really hustling on an almost Marvel Hip Hop covers scheme level of unnecessary this month. They only have 21 different titles coming out, but with all variant covers included, they have 54 solicited books, with some titles racking up a whopping five different covers. At least we know how the Dynamite offices are keeping the lights on.
Steve Orlando’s back this month with his Batman/Shadow book, which I guess in the immortal Twitter words of Scott Snyder, “Anyone on Batman is the head Batman writer,” makes Steve the head Batman writer. This month’s copy is just as hyperbolic as last time, and honestly if that copy is not written by Orlando give whoever is writing it a book stat cos that shit is wild.
“The truth of what the Shadow doesn’t know threatens to destroy his partnership with Batman and Robin just when they need him the most.”
The Shadow is lying, and I guess Robin is in the book now too then! Cool Bat-beans. Also Batman is wearing his proper DC continuity batsuit, so, is this canon? Answers on a postcard, readers.
Dynamite continues their plan to make as many James Bond comics as humanly possible this month, a mammoth task made possible only by a 10 year quest by one of comics many unsung heroes, Mike Lake. We have James Bond: Kill Chain #5 and a brand new one shot. This newest entry, James Bond: Solstice by writer/artist Ibrahim Moustafa, seems to be about James Bond doing a James Bond style mission whilst being James Bond. I’m still waiting for the long rumored YA James Bond series Dynamite is meant to put out at some point, which is literally the only way I’d care about James Bond unless they cast Ruth Negga as 007 in the next Bond movie.
We see the return of a few more of last month’s comics with Hitman Agent 47 #2 and Ash Versus The Army Of Darkness #5. Still no sexy 12-year-old variant cover for Hitman, so that’s something at least. Christopher Sebela and Jonathan Lau continue their story of men whose family were unimaginative enough to name them after numbers, running around the world killing people. Maybe it’s good? Guess we’ll have to wait until November to find out. Ash vs AOD comes to an end with this fifth issue and TBH even as a fan of the movies I’m so bored of Evil Dead and the annoying dudes who love it that I’m relieved even without reading it. If you enjoyed it fear not, for I cannot remember the last time there wasn’t some derivative comic adaptation of it going on.
Hack/Slash (slash?) Vampirella is back, and only one of its two covers contains a really gratuitous cleavage shot, so that’s progress. The copy for this book is so abstract and calls into use so many chaos gods and queens and such that it actually sounds quite fun? Once again though it’s a book about two sexy women with an entirely male creative team, and seeing as Dynamite has (once again) flopped at having pretty much any women on their books this month–check our super cool graph at the bottom for those hard hitting numbers–fuck that noise.
Oh, look it’s another comic book about an iconic woman with exactly NO WOMEN ON THE CREATIVE TEAM! Yup, it must be Betty Page #5. Look, supposedly she’s a rad AF spy or something, but guess what? The reality of this book is they wanted to sell sexy pinup covers and essentially exploit the erotic image of a dead woman to men who want to touch themselves over polybagged variant covers. And that’s fucking gross. There’s a whole bunch of cool subversive stuff that could’ve been done with this book that, at a base level, could have started by putting some women on it. And even then you’d really have to be doing some radical shit to justify this nonsense. If you do love sexy dead women, though, you can at least enjoy the three variant covers for this issue, as well as the $19.99 incentive variant (ONLY 400 AVAILABLE, BANKRUPT YOUR LOCAL COMIC SHOP NOW) for issue #1 that’s also being solicited (resolicited?) this month for some unknowable reason.
Your monthly video game licensed comics come in the form of Fruit Ninja #3. Yes, if you were surprised by the fact that a game about cutting fruit in half was so popular, let yourself be even more shocked by the fact that game is now a comic book. I think it’s an anthology comic. The copy is confusing, but the art is pretty cute. We also have the final issue of the surprisingly great Centipede miniseries, based on the Atari classic. Max Bemis and Eoin Marron have really made this a super cool little sci-fi book that I highly recommend, plus this issue has some rad Francesco Francavilla cover art too. Enjoy this good book.
If swords and sandals are your thing, Dynamite is really doubling down on that stuff in November. So take your pick from Game of Thrones: Clash of the Kings–which seems to be a weird few years too late adaptation set sometime in season two–or how about The Great Adventure, a Tarzan book, which looks like it’s straight out of Wertham era comics and not in a good way. There’s also Red Sonja, Sheena, and Turok. Credit where it’s due, Red Sonja is one of the few Dynamite books to have a woman working on it–shout out to Amy Chu! There are five sexy variant covers to choose from, so go wild. Sheena is another a sexy variant cover minefield written by another rad woman–shout out to Marguerite Bennett! I do wish they’d get some new cover artists, though, cause these sexy rib covers are really killing any chance of my reading this book. Turok is about dinosaurs I think? Which is cool, but there are once again no women on this book so no shout out for sexy shirtless Turok and his dinosaurs.
John Wick is back and still looking reassuringly like Keanu. This book appears to be gorgeous from the previews so far, and John Wick is a really fun property, so I hope that Greg Pak and Giovanni Valletta keep killing it with this one. What is Skin and Earth? Issue #5 is out this month and looks really gorgeous too, plus it’s written and drawn by a female artist called Lights? Come on, Dynamite, you really dropped the ball on this one, anyway this book looks cool, and we should probably all support it/tweet Dynamite and ask why no one has ever heard of it til now. As always you can get a solo Shadow book too. Si Spurrier is on this one and he’s usually pretty great so maybe it’s good? Another book with an all male creative team though so I also don’t really care.
Last, but not least are the four sexy Vampirella covers for Vampirella #9 which–you guessed it–has an all male creative team and a saucy cosplay variant cover. I have to wonder why these so called allies take on these all male books about women rather than just recommending women for the jobs? ???? There’s also a book called Killer Instinct, but I could not for the life of me work out what it’s about. Skeletons, or something, plus I’ve gone all male creative team blind at this point. Oh, forgive me.
There’s not much other Dynamite news this month, so as always, if you have any Dynamite tidbits or gossip or made up stories about Dynamite that even Rich Johnson won’t run (lol just kidding he’ll run literally anything), then hit me up. And I’ll fact check it to death and probably not run it at all! But for now enjoy this incredibly depressing graph on the gender disparity of the creative teams at Dynamite this month.
Til next time, Dynamite hounds.