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Essential Comics for 1-13-16

These are the comics you're looking for.

Each week a massive amount of comics are released. If you're trying to keep your spending under a certain limit and determine which titles are worth checking out, it can be a daunting task. We've gone through the list to help you decide which books you need to read on Wednesday, January 13.

Tony's Picks

SECRET WARS #9

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Publisher: MARVEL COMICS

(W) Jonathan Hickman (A) Esad Ribic (CA) Alex Ross

The end is finally here. Yes, there’s been some delays. The series was also extended an issue. These factors didn’t help the fact that the All-New, All-Different Marvel titles started being released back in October. These issues take place 8 months after the events of SECRET WARS, which gives us an idea what happens to many of the characters in the Marvel Universe.

Regardless, the series has been fun. Jonathan Hickman had been building up the events for the series for some time. This is where we get to see his big payout. What will the final fate be for Reed Richards and Doctor Doom? How and why did Doom change as we’ve seen in recent issues of INVINCIBLE IRON MAN? It’s a bummer we’ve had to wait but Hickman and Esad Ribic will make it worth our wait.

SUPERMAN: AMERICAN ALIEN #3

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Publisher: DC COMICS

(W) Max Landis (A) Joëlle Jones (CA) Ryan Sook

We’ve seen Superman origin stories many times. Max Landis has been taking a less traditional approach in showing us different moments in Clark Kent’s life. In most cases, we’ve seen Clark as a young lad in Smallville, living on the farm. In some tellings, he was Superboy and others he did heroic deeds in secret.

This issue will give us a look at a 21-year-old Clark. To mix things up, Clark ends up getting confused for billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne. The art will also be handled by Joëlle Jones. You may be familiar with her recent work on the Mockingbird one-shot and LADY KILLER miniseries. Jones’ art is all the reason I need to check this issue out. Young Clark partying on a yacht is an added bonus.

HUCK #3

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Publisher: IMAGE COMICS

(W) Mark Millar (A/CA) Rafael Albuquerque

Huck is the hero with a heart. With his slow mind and complete innocence, he’s lived his life doing everything he could to help others. Despite everyone in his town knowing about his abilities and actions, his deeds were kept a secret. The day someone decided to tip off the press about Huck’s abilities, his life changed.

With the world’s eyes on him and some politicians eager to use him to their advantage, the big question is whether or not Huck can watch out for himself? If this wasn’t enough, get ready for a juicy twist at the end of the issue.

EXTRAORDINARY X-MEN #5

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Publisher: MARVEL COMICS

(W) Jeff Lemire (A/CA) Humberto Ramos

What’s going on with Cyclops? This is another example of slight frustrations over the delays in SECRET WARS. In this title and in ALL-NEW X-MEN, the fate of this member of the X-Men has been teased. It hasn’t been clear whether or this was something explained in SECRET WARS (most likely not) or just something that occurred in the mysterious 8 months after. Mr. Sinister dropped a bit of a bombshell on readers but when it comes to Sinister, you can never fully believe anything he has to offer.

Jeff Lemire and Humberto Ramos have been pouring the fun and excitement into this series. The state of the X-Men is in disarray because of the actions of the Inhumans and they’re creating a very nice vibe for the mutants in their current struggle. This issue marks the end of the first arc and we can be sure there will be some x-plosive repercussions.

ALL-NEW WOLVERINE #4

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Publisher: MARVEL COMICS

(W) Tom Taylor (A) David Lopez (CA) Bengal

I’ve always been a fan of X-23 and Tom Taylor is making the next chapter in her life exciting. We’ve seen Laura take part in many moments of action and violence but it still feels like Taylor is holding back a little. As she continues on her current mission in helping out the clones of her that were created, her journey will have her seeking assistance from Doctor Strange.

Wolverine and Doctor Strange does feel like a strange team-up and that’s part of what makes it something to look forward to. David Lopez’s art has been phenomenal as well. This issue should be nuts—in a good way.

Mat's Picks

MIGHTY MORPHIN POWER RANGERS #0

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Publisher: BOOM! STUDIOS

(W) Kyle Higgins, Mairghread Scott (A) Daniel Bayliss, Hendry Prasetyo (CA) Goni Montes

The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers are back! Go go Power Rangers! Cue the guitar solo as this new series comes to BOOM! Studios. This #0 issue is going to kick off the brand new series by Kyle Higgins (COWL, NIGHTWING), Mairghread Scott (LANTERN CITY), Daniel Bayliss (TRANSLUCID), and Hendry Prasetyo (GREEN LANTERN, POWER GIRL).

The Power Rangers had series in the past at Marvel and Hamilton Comics, but what's great about this new series is that BOOM! is running the show and they've done some solid work with franchise titles like 28 DAYS LATER and ADVENTURE TIME. Plus, Higgins is a pretty fantastic writer and it's nice to see him get to work on this series, which hopefully contains a whole lot of monster battles and maybe a little Bulk and Skull.

BIRTHRIGHT #13

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Publisher: IMAGE COMICS

(W) Joshua Williamson (A/CA) Andrei Bressan

BIRTHRIGHT is the best book writer Joshua Williamson has worked on in his career thus far, which is saying a lot since he's also worked on titles like GHOSTED, NAILBITER, and the recent Marvel SECRET WARS tie-in, RED SKULL. For those who have been missing out, BIRTHRIGHT is the tale of a young boy, Mikey, who gets whisked away to a magical, fantasy realm to battle an evil entity. He returns to Earth one year later, except Mikey has aged 20 years.

It's easy to compare a story like this to classic 80s fantasy films like Willow, Flight of the Navigator, and many other films, but Williamson expounds on the idea a bit further, putting the focus of the story also on the family that lost their son and how they deal with him being so much older upon his return. In addition, readers are treated to some stellar artwork from Andrei Bressan who raises the bar for fantasy storytelling.

CITIZEN JACK #3

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Publisher: IMAGE COMICS

(W) Sam Humphries (A/CA) Tommy Patterson

Writer Sam Humphries and artist Tommy Patterson's newest Image series, which pokes an immense amount of fun at politics and election has been a hit. In this new series, Presidential hopeful, Jack Northworthy makes a deal with a demon named Marlinspike in order to help him win the election.

The book has been a hilarious look at politics with a fantastic sense of humor. Humphries does what he does best and that's delivering a humorous adventure that at times is incredibly off-the-rails, all while giving the reader an interesting story. One of the weirdest moments, thus far, has been an anchor on a cable news network, who just happens to be a dolphin. Patterson creates some great visuals in this series, which has a dark and gritty undertones, all while looking a bit more animated. This has been a great start to this new Image series.

BATMAN AND ROBIN ETERNAL #15

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Publisher: DC COMICS

(W) Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly (A) Christian Duce (CA) David Finch, Jonathan Glapion

It's a few weeks past the half-way mark for DC's weekly series and BATMAN & ROBIN ETERNAL has easily been the best weekly series in comics. While there have been some slow moments, the overall book has been amazing and full of secrets as the mysterious Mother tries to take hold of Gotham, and in turn, she tries to kill off Batman's sidekicks.

Considering this book has featured many different artists and writers, what's kept this book consistently good is the fact that James Tynion IV and Scott Snyder have been working on the overall plot and story for this book. Fans are also introduced to a whole slew of top-tier talent as well.

CAPTAIN AMERICA SAM WILSON #5

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Publisher: MARVEL COMICS

(W) Nick Spencer (A) Paul Renaud (CA) Daniel Acuña

Nick Spencer's run on this new Captain America series has been an interesting one so far. It's not Steve Rogers that's Captain America though. Sam Wilson has taken over the role and one of the aspects Sam has to deal with is how some people don't consider him to be the "real" Captain America, which echoes how some readers feel about this change. However, Spencer has really given Wilson a voice and done some fine development with the character.

As the cover on this issue states, there's going to be a brand new Falcon debuting. Since the original Falcon, Wilson, is now holding the mantle of Cap, someone else should take over as Falcon and fans will get to see that on this issue. Paul Renaud continues to do art on this book and he did an excellent job on the last issue, so it'll be exciting to see what he brings to the rest of this arc.

Honorable Mention: THE WALKING DEAD #150

That's our list for this week. Let us know what's on your list.