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10 Comics to Buy This Week: 7/18/2012

Ms. Marvel gets a new name and calling, Wonder Woman tries to keep the peace, and a pissed off Namor throws a hissy fit (what else is new).

Welcome back to 10 Comics to Buy This Week. As you're probably well aware, there are a metric crap-ton of comic books hitting shelves every single week. And for the common consumer, it's financially impossible to pick up everything. That's where this column steps in like your superhero savior, drawing your attention to 10 books worth your hard-earned dollars during any given week.

We not only going to spotlight tights and capes books, but also some indie titles off the beaten path, which, if all goes well, will broaden your reading horizons.

Avengers vs. X-Men #8

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Yup, another issue of Avengers vs. X-Men is getting the spotlight treatment here. What can I say; the series has become quite awesome since it entered its second act (a lot of that has to do with Olivier Coipel taking over art duties).

However, Adam Kubert is actually drawing this issue, as a Phoenixed-out Namor attacks Wakanda in search of Hope (and power no doubt). Marvel is also promising a “shocking truth” that could fracture the X-Men’s alliance. Hmm…

Before Watchmen: Silk Spectre #2

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We’ve come back around again to another issue of Silk Spectre, the Darwyn Cooke written, Amanda Conner drawn series spotlighting Laurie Juzpeczyk and her mother, Sally. The first issue of Silk Spectre is one of the best of the Before Watchmen line to date, so here’s hoping issue #2 delivers the same kind of thrills as Laurie sets off on a cross-country trip with her new main squeeze. But in typical Watchmen fashion, things are probably going to go very, very wrong.

Captain Marvel #1

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You can call her the “Captain” now. Not “Ms.” Writer Kelly Sue DeConnick and artist Dexter Soy bring back Carol Danvers with a new name and new mission.

Fittingly, this issue also guest stars Captain America himself. It’s probably just so the two of them can argue over who has the cooler name starting with “Captain.” For the record, “Captain Marvel” is much cooler.

Daredevil #15

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What better way to cap off Team Daredevil taking home a heaping of Eisner’s than by releasing a new issue of the series a few days later? Well played, Marvel.

Daredevil #15 picks up shortly following the events of issue #14, with Matt experiencing a sudden loss of all his senses. This obviously makes playing superhero a bit difficult. Will Matt be able to escape the clutches of Doctor Doom, or will he forever rot in Latveria without the help of his super senses. Pick up this issue to find out, True Believers!

Justice League #11

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The main reason I’m recommending this book this week is because of the Shazam! back-up story. While it’s safe to assume everyone was a little perturbed that Billy Batson was portrayed as such a jerk at the beginning of this story, the pieces are starting to come together to bring everything full circle and reveal the character we all know and love. On top of that, the cliffhanger to last month’s installment probably made every Shazam fan start to drool uncontrollably.

Oh, and there’s also the continuation of the Justice League versus Graves (AKA a white version of Hopper from A Bug’s Life wearing a cape) as the book’s main feature. But seriously, come for the back-up, stay for the actual Justice League delivering justice (maybe).

Saga #5

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It’s that time of the month, time for a new issue of Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples’ Saga. This issue looks to spotlight Prince Robot IV and his hunt for li’l Hazel.

Last month’s installment was quite the emotional roller coaster ride of “Oh Crap!” moments, especially in regards to The Will’s journey to Sextillion (I’m still having nightmares about that). We’ll see if this week’s issue can up the ante once again. Although, I’m not sure my heart can take that kind of brutal punishment.

Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison #3

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Do you like Star Wars? Do you also like comics (that was kind of rhetorical)? Well, then you should be reading Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison. This series by Haden Blackman and Agustin Alessio is a fantastic examination of Darth Vader through the lens of a young Imperial cadet. Pick up this week’s third issue and the previously released issues as well while you’re at it. Thank me later.

Sunset HC

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Minotaur Press presents their first original graphic novel, written by Christos Gage and drawn by Jorge Lucas. Sunset focuses on a retired veteran named Nick Bellamy, who stole a fortune from his former boss, who just so happens to work for the mob. Now the mob is after him in the twilight of his years with the sole intention of taking everything that's precious to him away. In the aftermath, Nick will set out to get his revenge, guns blazing no doubt.

But here’s my favorite part of the book’s pitch: Sunset will “make you forget all about your Prius and organic whole-grain trans-fat-free diet.” I’m not sure what that has to do with anything, but I’m in. Sign. Sealed. Delivered. Sunset, I’m yours.

Wonder Woman #11

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It’s the start of a new story, as Apollo makes his play for Zeus’ throne. However, leave it to Wonder Woman to be the last thing standing in his way.

I still stand by the fact that Wonder Woman is one of the best series coming out of DC at the moment. Brian Azzarello’s take on the character and her mythos is inspiring, to say the least. If you haven’t been reading this book to date, please correct that. You can start with this issue, or pick up the previous ten to be totally up to speed with this epic. You won’t regret it.

X-O Manowar #3

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It feels like forever since the last issue of X-O Manowar. Thankfully, the gap between issue #2 and #3 is about to close. Now that Aric is finally in control of the X-O armor, will he be able to lead his legion of devoted followers back home and to safety. This issue also promises to feature a standoff between Aric and Commander Trill, the man responsible for his capture. It’s about to go down, one might say.

Erik Norris is a freelance writer for sites such as ComicVine, IGN and You can stalk him on Twitter@Regular_Erik.