DC Pubwatch: End of Year Edition

DC Pubwatch - October

Sorry about missing November, but I’m here to make it up for you at the end of the year. Hands down the best book of the last two months was Wonder Woman Historia and if you haven’t picked it up yet, I implore you to go buy the book, preferably in print.

The News

A pretty quiet couple of months on the news front for DC, but I’d like to take the opportunity to congratulate Andrea Shea on her well-deserved promotion to editor!

Highlights

Before I get into the monthly highlights I want to drop some numbers and some end-of-year accolades. DC released 574 comics in 2021, and I gave 396 of them either an A or a B, which is a stellar average. This year saw a lot of big swings from DC that I fully attribute to the change in leadership from Bob Harras to Marie Javins. Most notably, DC worked hard to bridge some much-needed representation gaps this year with an increased focus on LGBT heroes and heroes of color. These are things that would not have happened three years ago, and a sign that things are changing for the better at the company.

My favorite book of the year was, unsurprisingly, The Dreaming: Waking Hours, which I wrote about at length with the finale.

James Tynion was probably my favorite writer of the year, as he made me love a Joker series, on top of all the other stellar work he put out. DC won’t be the same without him at the helm of the Bat-line.

Dan Mora was my favorite artist of the year, his work on Detective Comics consistently elevating that book to the top of the bunch when it was his turn in the rotation. I’m really excited to see his World’s Finest.

Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons Book One
Clayton Cowles (letters), Kelly Sue DeConnick (writer), Hi-Fi (colors), Romulo Fajardo, Jr. (colors), Phil Jimenez (art), Arif Prianto (colors)

Wonder Woman petting a lion draped in peacock feathers - Cover of Historia Book One

This book was a labor of love that spanned years of production and delays. Without a doubt though, it was worth the wait. Every single page of this book is an artistic tour de force from Jimenez, a career-defining work that will be remembered for decades. The way that he and DeConnick frame the origin of the Amazons is fresh and exciting. The designs that Jimenez uses for the Greek pantheon are unique but recognizable (I particularly love Apollo), and the details that are packed into each design are stunning. In addition, the Guide to Amazon Tribes at the end of the book is particularly juicy with wonderful art and descriptions of the various founding Amazons. This book is an undeniable masterpiece.

Grade: A+

Batgirls #1
Becca Carey (letters), Becky Cloonan (writer), Michael W. Conrad (writer), Jorge Corona (art), Sarah Stern (colors)

Steph and Cass playing video games as Babs screen times with them

Come on, how much have I been screaming for this book? Of course it was one of my top books of the last two months.

Grade: A+

Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow #6
Clayton Cowles (letters), Bilquis Evely (art), Tom King (writer), Mat Lopes (colors)

Supergirl and Ruthye falling into the mouth of a dinosaur

I long for a Supergirl book that actually has Supergirl as its main character because six issues into this series and it’s clearly not this one. I mean even if the narrator of the book wasn’t the child that’s been tagging along for vengeance, this still wouldn’t be starring Supergirl, because the character is nothing like the Kara Zor-El I love. Issue five is the worst offender on both fronts here, as for the entire issue Supergirl is incapacitated by a “green sun” and Ruthye has to be the hero of the story. In the brief moments where Supergirl is even conscious in this book, she disparages her cousin multiple times and is proud of teaching a child to swear. Because you know, role model. This, of course, being a mainline DC book, the swears were grawlix, but being that it is a Tom King book, that would have held true in Black Label too because even when he can use big boy words King still prefers to use symbols instead.

Grade: F

Teen Titans Academy #10
Tom Derenick (art), Rob Leigh (letters), Mike Norton (art), Tim Sheridan (writer), Alex Sinclair (colors)

Shazam fighting Red X

This book could have been great. The premise of the original Titans teaching the next generation of heroes is one that I absolutely love, and it was played with a bit during Devin Grayson’s Titans run, which is still one of my all-time favorite comic runs. Instead, we have a writer who seems intent on pissing all over Gen Z for nothing more than your standard generational punchlines. Case in point, this series made an effort to introduce a nonbinary character, only to use their identity as such for a punchline in multiple issues. I said above that DC has made great strides this past year in terms of representation, so I know that they can do better than this garbage.

Grade: F

Grades

A+

Batgirls #1
Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons Book One

A

Action Comics #1036-1037
Batman Secret Files: The Gardener #1
Batman: Fear State: Omega #1
Batman: The Imposter #2
Batman/Superman: Authority Special #1
Catwoman #37
Justice League Incarnate #1
Nightwing 2021 Annual #1
Nubia & the Amazons #2
Robin & Batman #1
Robin #8
Robin 2021 Annual #1
Static: Season One #4
Superman ’78 #3-4
The Joker 2021 Annual #1
The Nice House on the Lake #6
Wonder Girl #5-6
Wonder Woman #781
Wonder Woman: Evolution #1-2
World of Krypton #1

B

Action Comics #1038
Aquaman: The Becoming #3-4
Aquaman/Green Arrow – Deep Target #2-3
Arkham City: The Order of the World #2-3
Batman ’89 #4
Batman #116-117
Batman 2021 Annual #1
Batman: Urban Legends #9
Black Manta #3-4
Checkmate #6
Crush & Lobo #6-7
DC vs. Vampires #2-3
Deathstroke Inc. #3-4
Detective Comics #1045-1046
Detective Comics 2021 Annual #1
Hardware: Season One #3
Harley Quinn #9
Human Target #1-3
I Am Batman #3-4
Icon & Rocket: Season One #4
Justice League Dark 2021 Annual #1
Justice League Incarnate #2
Mister Miracle: The Source of Freedom #6
Nightwing #86-87
Nubia & the Amazons #3
One-Star Squadron #1
Refrigerator Full of Heads #2-3
Robin #9
Suicide Squad #9
Task Force Z #2-3
Teen Titans Academy #8
The Flash #776
The Joker #9
The Swamp Thing #9-10
Wonder Woman #782
Wonder Woman 2021 Annual #1
Wonder Woman Black & Gold #6
Gotham City Villains Anniversary Giant #1

C

Batman vs. Bigby! A Wolf in Gotham #3
Batman: Reptilian #6
Batman: The Detective #6
Blue & Gold #4
Dark Knights of Steel #1-2
DC Horror Presents: Soul Plumber #2-3
Future State: Gotham #7-8
Green Lantern #8-9
Harley Quinn #10
Justice League #69-70
Justice League Infinity #5-6
Justice League: Last Ride #7
Pennyworth #4-5
Robins #2
Suicide Squad #10
Suicide Squad: King Shark #3
Superman: Son of Kal-El #5
Swamp Thing: Green Hell #1
Teen Titans Academy #9
The Flash #777
Tis the Season To Be Freezin #1
Titans United #4

D

Batman vs. Bigby! A Wolf In Gotham #4
Batman: Reptilian #5
Batman/Catwoman #9
Robins #1
Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow #6
Superman vs. Lobo #2
Teen Titans Academy #7
Titans United #3

F

Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow #5
Teen Titans Academy #10

Solicitation Situation

Worlds Finest #1050

  • Written by MARK WAID
  • Art and cover by DAN MORA
  • Variant covers by JIM LEE, STANLEY “ARTGERM” LAU, and JASON FABOK
  • 1:25 “SLAP BATTLE” variant covers (2) by CHIP ZDARSKY
  • 1:50 “HIGH FIVE” variant cover by EVAN “DOC” SHANER
  • 1:100 “SEINFELD” variant cover by DAN MORA
  • Team variant cover by LEE WEEKS
  • $3.99 US | 32 pages | Variant $4.99 US (card stock)
  • ON SALE 3/15/22

The Dark Knight. The Man of Steel. They are the two finest superheroes that the world has ever known…and they’re together again in an epic new series from the legendary talents of Mark Waid and Dan Mora! In the not-too-distant past, Superman’s powers are super-charged from a devastating chemical attack by the villain Metallo…and the only ally that the ultra-powerful Man of Tomorrow can turn to in this turbulent hour is

Gotham’s own dark vengeance: the Batman. A nearly fatal burst of power drives Bruce Wayne to his own extreme measures to help his friend…enlisting none other than the Doom Patrol for aid. It’s the world’s greatest superheroes from the world’s greatest comic book talent in an epic comic book experience that kicks off the next big events in the DCU. Get ready, it’s time to soar.

 

Supergirl and Batgirl standing back to back

I’m STILL in this for Dan Mora Superman. That’s really it. Well and the Chip Zdarsky slap battle covers, and the Artgem Supergirl/Batgirl cover (pictured because I’m a mark)

Who’s Who Omnibus Volume 2

  • Written by VARIOUS
  • Art by VARIOUS
  • Cover by BRIAN BOLLAND
  • $125.00 US | 1,208 pages | 7 1/16″ x 10 7/8″ | Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-77951-519-3
  • ON SALE 5/10/22

DC’s encyclopedia of heroes and villains steps into the 1990s in this massive hardcover continuing the classic Who’s Who biography series! Also includes the spinoff series Who’s Who in the Legion of Super-Heroes, spotlighting DC’s greatest team of the 30th century. Collects Who’s Who in the Legion of Super-Heroes #1-7, Who’s Who in the DC Universe #1-16, and Who’s Who Update 1993 #1-2.

The Legion of Super-Heroes rushing at the reader

Listen, I’m a sucker for the Who’s Who and Secret Files series, so of course, I’m buying this.

2021 was a fantastic year for DC, lets hope 2022 continues to move the needle forward.

Cori McCreery

Cori McCreery

Cori is a life long comic nerd residing in Northern California. A life long Supergirl and DC Comics fan, she is the DC Comics Beat Reporter for Women Write About Comics.

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