Heroes & Villains: Don’t Hide PR’s Melissa Meszaros, Detective Comics, RAI Book One

Part of the Heroes & Villains mission statement involves “seeking out new and interesting comics” and because of that, the column relies A LOT on the tireless efforts of PR people that actually do all the leg work and get the new and interesting comics into my hands so I can read them and then write about them for all of you.

Specifically, Melissa from Don’t Hide PR…she’s gotten me some of the best small press books to read in recent memory, books that normally would have flown under my radar have made their way to me all thanks to her. Unfortunately, Melissa and her partner lost everything in the Holiday Farm wildfire after just moving to their dream home in Vida, Oregon.

I could throw around words like “unimaginable” or “indescribable” but I’d be failing in my job as a writer. These are two people that worked hard to get to a place they wanted to be only to have it all taken away from them in an instant. It’s a tragedy in the truest sense of the word.

A Go Fund Me account has been set up to help them out. I’ve donated, BBP’s! Editor-in-Chief dunked on me with an even larger donation than mine (perhaps, I’m not sure how the exchange rate works out these days) and YOU should consider donating at this link.

Detective Comics #1027
Various (W/A)
DC Comics

Hey, didn’t Detective Comics just have a gargantuan anniversary issue recently? Well, yes…yes it did. But that was Detective Comics #1,000, this is Detective Comics #1,027 which is yet another important milestone.

Batman’s first appearance wasn’t until Detective Comics #27 so this issue marks one thousand issues of nothing but Batman. Prior to the Dark Knight’s arrival the book was as advertised…comics about detectives. I’m not about to say the book was without its merits but there’s a reason the title took off like it did once Batman graced its pages. Amazingly (or unsurprisingly given Batman’s popularity), the title has been in continuous publication for over 80 years now.

The book clocks in at a hefty 144 pages with the following writers contributing stories: Peter J. Tomasi, Brian Michael Bendis, Matt Fraction, Greg Rucka, James Tynion IV, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Mariko Tamaki, Marv Wolfman, Grant Morrison, Tom King, Scott Snyder, and Dan Jurgens.

The book includes art by:Brad Walker, Andrew Hennessy, Nathan Fairbain, David Marquez, Alejandro Sanchez, Chip Zdarsky, Eduardo Risso, Riley Rossmo, Ivan Plascencia, John Romita, Jr, Klaus Janson, Arif Prianto, Dan Mora, Tamra Bonvillian, Emanuela Luppchino, Bill Sienkiewicz, Jordie Bellaire, Chris Burnham, Walter Simonson, Laura Martin, Ivan Reis, Joe Prado, Marcelo Maiolo, Dan Jurgens, and Kevin Nowlan.

There’s SO MUCH good Batman stuff in this issue and I’m currently working my way through it all. My early favorite (insomuch as I went directly to it first) was the Grant Morrison & Chris Burnham contribution Detective #26 which took me back to their run on the title which was one of the best in my opinion.

Finally, the title is technically budget priced at $9.99. That may seem like a lot for a single issue of a comic book but when you consider that a collected edition trade paperback with the same page count is usually priced twice as much…well, how can you afford NOT to pick it up?

RAI: Book One
Dan Abnett (W)
Juan José Ryp (A)
Valiant Entertainment

It’s been a spell since I’ve checked up on what Valiant is doing and RAI: Book One was an excellent place to start. Here’s the blurb:

Welcome to the 41st century: New worlds, new characters, new adventures.

The cyborg ronin named Rai embarks on a thrilling quest to save the future. Side by side with his prototype and predecessor – the robot boy called Raijin – the spirit guardian of the fallen nation of New Japan will journey into the wastelands of Earth to set right the wrongs of their onetime overlord once and for all.

Collecting the first five issues of the 2019 RAI series the book was a good introduction to the character and the world. When I sat down to read it today I positively tore through the first three issues before I remembered I had some place to be and begrudgingly had to put the book down. There’s a lot to love in the book and Abnett and Ryp clearly seem to be having a lot of fun with it.

It’s definitely worth a look if you’ve got a ronin-sci-fi-post-apocalyptic-western itch that needs to be scratched…even if you didn’t know you HAD such and itch.

Leave a Reply