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This Week's Essential Comics: 07/08/13

These are the comics you're looking for.

It's Monday and that means it's time to prepare yourself for this week's comics. Okay, it may also mean you're a little bummed out to be back at work, but lift that chin up, Viner, and smile at the thought of delicious new comics for your brain and eyes to munch on. The Comic Vine staff has reviewed this week's full list of new comics and, as you'll be able to tell by Tony picking four issues, this is a pretty promising week. As always, let us know what your essential comics are for this week, too.

Tony 'G-Man' Guerrero's picks


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It's the second chapter of Zero Year. Last month's issue was everything we wanted and more. Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo took us back to a familiar time, early in Batman's career and made it something new and different while remaining completely faithful to the Batman mythos.

For a character that's been around since 1939 and whose origin has been told several times, you wouldn't think such a fascinating and original story could be told. But of course Snyder and Capullo have established the character is in safe hands.

Seeing Bruce Wayne return to Gotham after years away along with the mystery of his Uncle and the appearance of a certain other character, all the pieces are being set up and this is shaping up to be quite a ride.


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Hawkeye is the series that continues to give us everything we could want, month after month. After the last issue focusing on Pizza Dog, the story continues, picking up from what was started in issue 10.

Clint Barton is far from the perfect hero. That's part of the charm of this title, seeing him fall and get broken. Yet he continues to be the best hero he can be. It appears that Clint may be on his own for now but last issue we did see the return of a character with a rough history with Clint. What this means is something we'll have to wait and see.

Joining Matt Fraction once again is Francesco Francavilla on art. There's just so much to enjoy in this comic.


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Scott Snyder and Jim Lee on Superman. We're still getting used to the idea after last month's debut issue of the new series. The two jumped right in to give us a story with Clark (and Superman) nicely established in the midst of the DCU. We saw some familiar faces and We also got a glimpse at a new threat. And it looks like that's not the only threat he'll have to deal with as a new terrorist group is amping up their tactics, keeping Superman more than busy.

If that wasn't enough, Dustin Nguyen's art on the backup with Jimmy Olsen will be something to enjoy as well.

What more could we ask for? Oh yeah, Batman is supposed to pop in as well.


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Nightwing's mission in Chicago continues as Dick is determined to find Tony Zucco. This is a Nightwing we haven't quite seen before as he has separated himself from Batman and the rest of the Bat-Family. Dealing with this on his own, Nightwing has a different sort of edge as he can't rely on all the resources he usually has.

We had heard that Brett Booth was leaving the series as the projects have been piling up with him but we finally got confirmation that Will Conrad (STORMWATCH, X-23, X-MEN) is taking over. From the preview pages, it looks like we can set aside any concerns over the quality of the art slipping.

Kyle Higgins has been doing a great job on the title since the New 52 started but, without a doubt, this is the best we've seen in the series so far. And it keeps getting better.

Want more preview pages? Go to CBR.

Mat 'Inferiorego' Elfring's picks


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Last week, I bugged you guys to buy THE PHANTOM STRANGER and TRINITY OF SIN: PANDORA because they're lead-ins to this story line: Trinity War. The Dark side of DC is taking over for a few months. At the end of the first issue of PANDORA, Pandora is off to find Superman to help her get rid of the sin just unleashed on the planet centuries. The solicits for this week's JL are a bit weak, so I'm hoping it really revolves around Pandora officially meeting the Justice League for the first time. Flat out, the dark books, from DC, are highly under-rated, and this could be the event that finally pull the readers in that this section deserves. There's a lot of mystery when it comes to the Trinity of Sin: Pandora, The Question, and Phantom Stranger. What do these folks have to do with the rest of the DCU? It all starts this week!

Newsarama has a look at the issue.


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How in the heck do you follow up "Planet Death," the book's last arc? Well, you throw Gilad, the Eternal Warrior, into the mix. I've really been preaching the awesomeness of this book for quite some time. It's an incredibly fun and action packed book. Planet Death was a huge story arc, and it has been a little tough for new readers to jump on, since it's been really building to this story. Well, now new readers have the perfect jumping on point with issue 15. From the looks of the solicit, what happens here and the next issue or so really sets the tone for the next year of X-O MANOWAR. Lee Garbett jumps back on as artist, so this will be a good place for you to jump on. To the already loyal Manowar Warriors, you've done well, and this cross over should be really awesome.

Gregg 'k4tz' Katzman's picks


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This is one of the Marvel books you need to be reading and yes, that applies to people who aren't even big Hulk fans. Why? Because of Mark Waid's sharp and absurdly entertaining writing, that's why.

The writer's last issue of INDESTRUCTIBLE HULK absolutely flew off the charts when it comes to pure fun. I never thought a team-up between Daredevil and Hulk could be so great, but Waid pulled it off brilliantly. Murdock has a hysterical relationship with the character when he's Bruce or the green goliath and the encounters manage to remain equally amusing.

Throw in some "Thor level" weaponry with glorious artwork showing off their awesome power, Baron Zemo and more team-up goodness between Daredevil/Hulk and you bet I'm super stoked for this issue. And you know what? You should be stoked, too. Do the right thing and buy this.


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Before Ales Kot and Patrick Zircher took over, SUICIDE SQUAD was a book I had long forgotten. I love the cast of characters, but the story just wasn't doing anything for me and I eventually made the choice to eliminate it from my pull list. But once Kot and Zircher jumped on, I decided to give it a shot and it's loaded with potential.

Kot clearly has a great understanding of the variety of characters in the roster and, truth be told, I think he does a superb job with Deadshot's personality. Zircher's art is topnotch as well. Dark,detailed and engrossing, it's a stellar fit for the book's atmospher and the two make a great team for this title. It's definitely worth giving a shot if the title was ever even remotely on your radar.

Newsarama has a preview.


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More of the Nick TMNT universe? Uh, YES, PLEASE! The free comic book day issue was able to captures the lighthearted and exciting spirit of the show and I really dug it. The end result was a total blast and I'm hoping IDW can duplicate the super fun vibe yet again. Considering it's written by Kenny Byerly -- the writer of several episodes of the show -- I'm certain this issue will be a must read for any fans of the program and provide something really enjoyable for fans of all ages.

Seeing as the episode reviews usually have a pretty thorough discussion, I imagine I'm certainly not the only one truly excited to get more from this joyful and animated universe. Sometimes you just need some levity in your life and I have a good feeling this will deliver big time. Bring on the good times, IDW!

Jen 'MissJ' Aprahamian's picks


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Hickman and Dragotta have been spinning a seriously incredible tale with EAST OF WEST. It doesn't seem like there should be anything straightforward about a dystopian, alternate-history, Biblical-themed Western, but for all its delicious complexity, the underlying story is really quite clean. Issue #4 promises the reveal of what split the Four Horsemen apart -- something I wasn't expecting until at least ten issues in -- and since this is Hickman, we know it's going to be good.


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Pulp reboots are my jam right now, and THE BLACK BAT is one of my favorites. It's gritty, it's fast-paced, and it has just the right amount of mystery. This week's issue promises some Robin Hood-inspired elements; something about Tony robbing from the rich to fund his own aims sounds delightfully anti-heroic.


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I missed out on the previous incarnation of ASTRO CITY, but last month's debut as a Vertigo title was a great jumping-on point for the series, and I'm excited to see where it goes. It's clever, it's not afraid to be funny, and it's visually interesting -- check, check, and check for things I like in a new series. Issue #2 offers a peek into the more human side of things in Astro City, and I trust Busiek and Anderson to deliver a fascinating story.

MTV Geek has an exclusive preview.

Corey 'Undeadpool' Schroeder's picks


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Last issue gave readers a taste of a Green Lantern Corps with not only a pair of strong, central characters but a newfound focus on the Corps in Green Lantern Corps has me excited for this book's direction. Van Jensen (along with plotting by Green Lantern scribe Robert Venditti) already established this is a John Stewart/Fatality book, going so far as to assign Stewart the new role of Green Lantern drill sergeant and his newly minted Corps Members are already some of the most intriguing new characters in the title, but Bernard Chang looks to continue providing his crisp, sharp pencils that already defines GL Corps so well.


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Mark Waid can't stop topping himself across 28 tremendous issues. Every time you think a story arc must be the summit, it turns out the peak is still miles away and the mountain just keeps getting higher. Regardless of who he acts with, though all the artists have been absolutely top-notch and done nothing work beautifully with Waid's writing, but no matter who he works with, we are in for a treat. The previous arc has finished with an extremely satisfying ending, but there are plenty of loose ends to tie up and storylines to pick up that I doubt Waid will have any trouble putting ol' Hornhead through the wringer two or three more ways.


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Ed Brubaker's Secret Avengers was a more subtle than usual superhero story. Warren Ellis' run was cover disaster relief. Rick Remender's was a straight-ahead superhero tale, but with underused/underpowered heroes. All these runs were great in their own way, but Nick Spencer's is the first that really feels like Marvel spycraft, a truly modernized version of the old Steranko Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD stories. The book has been pure intrigue and espionage since day 1 and even when it SEEMS like it's venturing into nonsense or unneeded plot, it's all part of the bigger picture. #5 left off on a tense cliff-hanger, so I'm chomping at the bit for some answers in #6.

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