Every Wednesday, tons of new comic books come out and we have to figure out what to buy as our wallets to empty from all the awesomeness modern comics have to offer. To help ease your mind, the staff at Comic Vine picked some books out they can't wait to read. Let's get right down to it and see what books are essential.
JUSTICE LEAGUE #43
Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Jason Fabok
Colors by Brad Anderson
Darkseid War. Those two words are enough of a reason to pick up this book. Do you need a couple more reasons? How about Geoff Johns and Jason Fabok? We could go on and list some of the crazy things that have happened so far like Batman gaining possession of the Mobeus Chair or Superman and Lex Luthor having to team up together on Apokolips but it shouldn’t be necessary.
The stage has been set. The players and the pieces are being moved around. Now it’s time for the war to really begin. What’s going to happen when Darkseid and Anti-Monitor finally meet? Whose side will the League take? Is there a side they should take? With Batman trying to do things his way with the Mobeus Chair and Grail running around, there’s so many different unknowns being thrown at the League and readers. If you’re having a hard time waiting for this week’s issue, check out our new interview with Johns and Fabok HERE.
STAR WARS #8
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Stuart Immonen
Colors by Justin Ponsor
Jason Aaron’s STAR WARS series has been a blast and filling in readers what happened immediately after the events of Episode IV. Since there’s a three-year gap in between IV and V, there’s plenty of room for stories. One of the develops we saw was the revelation that Han Solo has a…wife? Luke Skywalker is also trying to figure out how to actually become a Jedi since he had such a short time training with Obi-Wan. Sounds like his next stop is the Jedi Temple on Coruscant. That sounds like it could be tricky thing with the Empire in control of the planet and all.
If all that wasn’t enough, this issue also marks Stuart Immonen’s first issue as the interior artist. The preview that was released may have only shown us a few pages but we get to see Immonen’s take on Star Destroyers, TIE Fighters, Han, and Leia. Plus Luke’s on the cover.
The series may be limited to this specific time period and we know certain things can’t happen but we’re still seeing some surprises come up.
Written by Mark Waid
Art by Fiona Staples
The first issue of the “all-new” ARCHIE comic caught us by surprise. I’ve read quite a bit of Archie comics in my time and my daughter devours them as soon as she gets them. Having the series go in a slightly new direction with Mark Waid writing and Fiona Staples drawing seemed like an odd choice. It almost felt unnatural for an Archie comic. Then again, we have seen Archie Comics doing lots of experimental things with high success. Needless to say, the first issue was pretty fantastic. The essence of Archie was there. We were introduced to the characters again for the first time. There’s a story and plot going on with readers wanting to know the mystery of the lipstick incident.
If you’ve never read ARCHIE before or know them like they were your neighbors, this series provides an easy jumping on point. The characters feel like real high school kids and not necessarily cartoon characters. You can expect some drama and heartbreak along with some really great art.
Written by Ales Kot
Art by Matt Taylor
Colors by Lee Loughridge
The first issue of WOLF gave us an immense over-size introduction to Ales Kot’s new series and comic book world. Antoine Wolfe feels like a real character aside from the fact he’s kind of immortal and has a death wish. In the Los Angles landscape, we got to see the other characters in his life, some with special abilities of his own. Just when he thought he had things somewhat figured out, he’s now responsible for an orphaned teenage girl. This, of course, isn’t your average teenage girl since she could be the one to stop an impending apocalypse.
Kot gives this series a supernatural feel combined with some noir elements. You might not be entirely clear what’s going on at first but as you see the story unfold, there’s a lot going on. With each page you feel the urge to find out more. Kot has an interesting journey planned for us. Matt Taylor’s art and lee Loughridge’s colors makes it all look great.
BLACK CANARY #3
Written by Brenden Fletcher
Art by Annie Wu
Art by Lee Loughridge
BLACK CANARY is a series that keeps catching me off guard. When news of this series came about, it sounded cool. I just wasn’t sure if it was “for me.” Dinah Lance as the leader of a rock band sounded a little odd and maybe not something I thought I’d want to read. Of course, I was wrong. Brenden Fletcher and Annie Wu have taken Dinah to a different place. Yes, she is singing in a band but there’s a whole lot more going on.
With the first performance we say, there’s been an underlying mystery over the identity of the young band member, Ditto. We’ve seen some evil and possibly alien forces chasing after the band. This means we’ve had a lot of fighting and Black Canary kicking a lot of butt. With this latest issue, it looks like we’ll be getting some answers along with more on the just revealed identity of someone who has returned from Dinah’s past.
Honorable Mention: TMNT #49
MANIFEST DESTINY #16
Written by Chris Dingess
Art by Matthew Roberts
Colors by Owen Gieni
Nothing makes me happier than to see MANIFEST DESTINY returning. It's been more than two months since we last saw what Lewis and Clark were up to in the new world with their exploration team, and if you've been keeping up with this series, which you really should, there's a whole bunch of giant arcs and giant monsters coming after them.
MANIFEST DESTINY is imaginative, familiar, and adventurous. For those who have been missing out on this book, it's the story of Lewis and Clark with a bunch of sweet monsters added. Month after month, this book goes under the radar and it really shouldn't. Writer Chris Dingess, artist Matthew Roberts, and colorist Owen Gieni provide some amazing storytelling, month after month. What is this team going to discover next?
BOOK OF DEATH #2
Written by Robert Venditti
Colors by David Baron
Summer events can be a bit of a drag. Sometimes, they just drag on and on or they're just mediocre. However, Valiant understands how to do summer events right. The first issue of BOOK OF DEATH was very different from what comic book fans are used to. This event is all about the last days or the heroes of the Valiant universe and how they meet their end. It also revolves around the Geomancer and the "Book of Death."
The first issue didn't blow me out of the water, but it was a great set-up. I like where this is headed and the villain that was introduced. Plus, there's a whole bunch of creepy bugs crawling everywhere! I really love what Venditti has been doing with X-O MANOWAR, especially the large-form storytelling he does in that book, so it's great to see him head this book up, with an amazing art team in Gill, Braithwaite, and Baron as the rest of the creative team. It may not be the best book to jump onto if you haven't read Valiant before, but this is still an event people can't miss.
Written by Josh Williamson
Art by Andrei Bressan
Colors by Adriano Lucas
Image puts out another one of their most awesome series this week: BIRTHRIGHT. I've never been loving what's going on the past few issues since everything seems to get crazier and crazier as the series goes on. Writer Joshua Williamson throws the readers through a loop, month after month, and while Williamson has racked up quite a collection of amazing books, BIRTHRIGHT is his top series.
Alongside Williamson is Andrei Bressan and Adriano Lucas who are geniuses when it comes to the visual medium of this series. Every page is beautifully detailed and colored and this book is artistically one of the best series around. Plus, check out that cover for issue #10. It's amazing and incredibly disturbing.
MARTIAN MANHUNTER #3
Written by Rob Williams
Colors by Gabe Eltaeb
This is the first time, in my history as a comic book reader, that I've really enjoyed a Martian Manhunter solo series. It really takes everything we know about this character in the New 52 and flips it on its head.
Full disclosure, I've already read this issue and love the direction its taken. This series is insane and dark and the exact opposite of what I expected it to be. I'm more excited to see the reactions on people's faces to how this all ends.
One of the things I found myself really drawn to was the awesomeness that is Mister Biscuits. He's such a bizarre character and while Martian Manhunter is the core character of this book, Mister Biscuits has become one of the most interesting parts of this brand new series.
Honorable Mention: AGE OF ULTRON VS MARVEL ZOMBIES #3
That's it for this week's edition of Essential Comics. Let us know what your books you're super-duper excited for this week in the comment section below!