I have no voice, yet I must talk about comics! Well, since I’m writing a column about comics my laryngitis doesn’t figure very prominently in its creation…so it’s business as usual for Heroes & Villains.
But first, some housekeeping: Next week, New Comic Book Day allegedly falls on a holiday or something so the release scheduled has been shifted a day forward to December, 26th. Releases also happen to be…a little thin. Well I say damn the man! You’ll still get a new Heroes & Villains column on the 25th as MY gift to YOU. It’s a big day for movie theaters and Chinese food restaurants, so why not this column? In lieu of new releases I’ll be writing about some of my favorite books of the last decade.
Please note that I am by no means an the authority on comics; in fact my choices may be pretty pedestrian. I’ve read a lot of spectacular “decade end” lists filled with critically acclaimed books that are all being added to my pile of books to read but my aim will be to give you some good choices to pick up from your local shop with some of your extra holiday loot.
Delilah S. Dawson with Aaron Mahnke (W)
Piotr Kowalski (A)
Out today from IDW Publishing is Wellington, a five-issue miniseries that is closely related to the popular Lore podcast. I will fully admit that I’m familiar with Lore only by reputation and after a quick gander at the podcast’s feed it appears that I’ll be binge listening to the show over my holiday break as the subjects it covers appeal very heavily to my interests.
So, looking at Wellington solely as a comic book I have to say that it’s quite good. It’s dark, and deeply atmospheric and I was pleased to see Piotr Kowalski’s name on the book since I loved his work from The Witcher Omnibus I wrote about some weeks back. This book could very well be one to cozy up with on the endlessly dark winter nights that were currently in the middle of. It seems like it would be perfect reading for the season.
The fine folks at IDW provided us with a copy of Wellington for review and the book is available for purchase at IDW Publishing and wherever print and digital comics are sold TODAY! As always, you support your local comic shops using www.comicshoplocator.com to find a shop that is close to you.
Doomsday Clock #12
Geoff Johns (W)
Gary Frank (A)
Well, today’s the day. Two years and one month after the DC Comics maxi-series launched it’s finally drawing to a close.
At the moment, I’m waiting for my copy to be delivered and it will absolutely be the first comic that I read tonight. Then, over the next week or so, I’ll be delving into my long boxes to piece together the entire series so I can read it front to back so I can get a feel for how it functions as a whole.
The book was originally billed as the next major DC event that would CHANGE EVERYTHING, as it was revealed that the pesky Doctor Manhattan was behind all those wacky DC continuity changes that nobody liked. I do find it darkly humorous that DC was using one of Alan Moore’s creations to cover for some of their recent blunders and thereby making Moore, by extension, the bad guy. It’s a stretch, I know.
While it was plagued with delays almost from the jump off, Doomsday Clock went from being the book that would CHANGE EVERYTHING to “oh yeah…that’s a thing.” I’m insanely interested in what went on behind the scenes with this book because this title was supposed to bring back the JSA, The Legion of Super Heroes, and it brought back the first Wally West. However, monthly comics wait for no man or maxi-series. The JSA unceremoniously popped up in the current Justice League run, the Legion member (Saturn Girl? Seriously, it’s been so long since I read the last issue I can’t remember) featured in Doomsday Clock disappeared like a fart in the wind during the last published issue just in time to make way for the Bendis Legion title. Oh, and fan favorite Wally West went to jail for negligent homicide after the Heroes In Crisis mini-series.
So, are they going to stick the landing like HBO’s Watchmen series that coincidently just wrapped up last week? That remains to be seen. It’s a tough act to follow…
Speaking of “tough acts to follow” Doomsday Clock has been rattling around my head since I took over the Heroes & Villains column some time after Glenn Walker’s passing. You see, Doomsday Clock #1 was one of the last books Glenn covered for this column* and I can’t help but wonder how he would have felt about how this played out over the last two years. Looking back at that column, I completely agreed with Glenn about how Doomsday Clock was more than a bit unnecessary as it diminished the original Watchmen which he viewed as “a complete story with a definitive ending, and to show us the post-Watchmen world is tantamount to blasphemy, and does noting really but taint and dilute that work of art.”
I will fully admit to having serious reservations taking on this column gig. My close friends will tell you that I was simultaneously flattered and petrified when I was asked to do it. It’s also true that I spent a full day trying to figure out ways to politely turn down the offer and not burn any of the rickety bridges I had built in my brief tenure with BBP! up until that point. I felt like Wally West taking over as The Flash after Barry Allen died during Crisis on Infinite Earths. I wasn’t ready for this, I didn’t feel I was particularly good at it, and there was no way I could replace Glenn. I could only hope to keep running the race that he started.
One day (far from now), I’m sure that I’ll step down from writing Heroes & Villains, making way for a younger writer with boundless enthusiasm and endless love for comics because that the way of things…comics keep going and they also keep me going. As you all well know, “Nothing ends, Adrian. Nothing ever ends.”
*Editor’s note: You can read Glenn’s review of Doomsday Clock #1 right here.