If you don’t know, Previews is the catalog that Diamond Comic Distributors use to offer the products they distribute to comic book stores around the country. This is where you can view and order (through your favorite Local Comic Book Shop) comic books, trade paperback collections, t-shirts, books, media, and toys and other collectibles from hundreds of different vendors that deal in geek-oriented merchandise. The genius part is that you actually have to pay for your copy of Previews for the privilege of ordering other things to pay for.
It’s like the Ren Fest except without the horse poo smell.
So every month a new edition of Previews is sent out to comic book stores. Contained in the pages within are products that might be currently available or could be released anytime in the next year; but are typically about two months away.
Now it’s time to discuss a few of the weird and/or wonderful items offered in this month’s edition!
New Mutants #1 – Marvel
Dammit, Jonathan Hickman, you’ve got me under your mutant spell.
Combining this New Mutants team – Magik, Sunspot, Wolfsbane, Douglock, Mirage, and Karma with Generation X alumni Chamber and Mondo – with this creative team – Hickman, Ed Brisson, and Rod Reis – makes this book irresistible to me. As wary as I was about the veritable cornucopia of new X-books, Marvel is putting together some truly compelling concepts.
2099 – Marvel
I knew there was a 2099 event coming, but I didn’t realize it was going to involve Amazing Spider-Man, which I have finally gotten around to starting after waiting almost two years for my comic shop to get the first two issues for me.
(which they never did – I finally just bought the first trade from the excellent folks at Memory Lane Comics)
The “2099” event will include ASM #33, 34, and 35. I’m not super happy about it, but the solicitations make it sound like a crossover the old-school Marvel way – where the narrative is contained to each series, but you can read everything if you want. Hopefully that’s the case.
Other titles include Fantastic Four, Punisher, Conan(!), Ghost Rider, Doom, and Venom. I’m not gonna lie – they all look pretty cool.
Punisher Soviet #1 – Marvel
Garth Ennis is back on Punisher and he’s brought his pal Jacen Burrows with him this time.
Frank’s in a tough spot in the real world. Some folks who shouldn’t be are treating him as an aspirational character and not the cautionary tale he is. Remember kids – being dead inside and devoid of empathy isn’t fun! Don’t be like Frank.
Frank in Russia, however, sounds like a great time. I’m sure insane Russian YouTubers will make a game out of being mowed down by… wait. Does the Punisher really not have any nicknames? Like wall-crawler or shell-head?
How about “The War Journaler” or “Mr. Grumpy Face”?
The Immortal Hulk #27 – Marvel
I’ve been curious about this book from the start and have heard nothing but good things about it. Apparently what’s going to bring me on board is the Hulk fighting a minotaur.
Now, I don’t know if that’s a minotaur or The minotaur and I don’t care because minotaurs are my favorite mythological creatures and this is awesome.
NOTE: I really like owlbears a lot, but there’s not exactly a ton of owlbear merchandise on the market so they have to play second fiddle.
Star Wars #75 – Marvel
WHAT. THE. HECK.
This book has been solid gold for so long that it never even occurred to me that it might get canceled. I’m sure that Marvel has plans to re-something it, but I hate to see its legacy come to an end. Through Jason Aaron, Kieron Gillen, and Greg Pak Star Wars has consistently delivered action that was not only compelling, but that fit the tone of the galaxy far, far away.
House of X/Powers of X HC – Marvel
I have thoroughly enjoyed Jonathan Hickman’s vision of the X-Men. Granted, I’m not up to date because my beloved Local Comic Shop for some reason decided to skip issue 3 of both series, but still pull issue 4 for me, but I’m sure they’ll be able to find me copies. Hopefully in less than 24 months.
This hardcover collection gets the Official Needless Things Recommendation and I might even order it myself. Just in case I never get those #3s.
Uncanny X-Force by Rick Remender Omnibus HC – Marvel
Speaking of recommendations, if you haven’t read Remender’s “Dark Angel Saga”, you need to. His Uncanny X-Force kept me in mutant books during a not-too-great time in Marvel’s history.
He-Man and the Masters of the Multiverse #1 (of 6) – DC
Tim Seeley writing Masters of the Universe. I am sold.
This title promises to encompass all eras of the MOTU franchise and I am all for it. DC has been doing a fantastic job with the license and I’ll grab pretty much anything they publish, but Seeley’s name on it makes it extra appealing; he’s a guy who knows his stuff.
And yes – that is Dolph Lundgren He-Man’s shoulder and cloak you see in that image!
The Question: The Deaths of Vic Sage #1 (of 4) – DC
This will probably be very, very good. Jeff Lemire, Denys Cowan, and Bill Sienkiewicz make for a heck of a creative team and I’ve always been a fan of the concept of the Question. Admittedly, I became a fan thanks to Jeffrey Combs on JLU and later Renee Montoya in the pages of Detective Comics, but I think there’s a great mythology to be explored and Lemire is certainly the guy to do it.
Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Blackest Night #1 – DC
Blackest Night is one of my favorite crossovers and I’m curious to see what this What If… style series does with the concept. Especially under the creative guidance of that Seeley fella.
DC Poster Portfolio by Joshua Middleton TP – DC
Joshua Middleton’s DC covers have been absolutely breathtaking. I don’t add them to my pull list like I did with Frank Cho’s, but I have grabbed a few after seeing them in person and being unable to resist.
A collection of his best would be nice enough, but this is a 12×16 volume printed on cardstock, which means each piece will be easily frameable if you so desire.
Batman: The Adventures Continue Action Figures – DC Collectibles
I don’t understand this at all.
I’ve always loved DC Collectibles/Direct, but this baffles me. I had been hoping since the inception of the Batman Animated line of action figures that they would eventually make their way into the realm of Justice League Unlimited. Instead, they released reportedly low-quality and un-accessorized figures of the League that were exclusive to DC Unlimited subscribers and grossly overpriced.
I subscribe, but I did not purchase.
Then they removed a key component of the Animated line from the most recent wave of figures – the stands.
I hate action figure stands. To me a figure that can’t stand without support is a lesser figure. Don’t get me wrong – I have tons of figures that require stands. But I’ll never love them as much. But the Animated figures have to have stands thanks to their huge upper bodies and itty-bitty little feet.
After trying and failing to display my collection without the huge, real estate-hogging stands I finally gave in and accepted that they were necessary and my Batman Animated shelves are filled to the brim with those eyesores.
Except, of course, for the most recent Scarecrow, Grey Ghost, and Robot Batman figures, who still need stands to remain upright but did not effing come with them. So not only do they not fit in with the rest of the collection, they can’t effing stand up.
And now, instead of course correcting and following through on the JLU promise, DCC is producing figures of characters who were never even a part of the DC Animated Universe.
It’s dumb and I’m out.
Undiscovered Country #1 – Image
This sounds fascinating.
In a near future where the United States walled itself off from the rest of the world thirty years ago, a team of people must make contact in search of a cure for a global plague.
This has the promise of a great mystery and potentially an epic-long-running series. Now that The Walking Dead is, er, dead and Saga is on hiatus, I’d love to find the next big thing. With Charles Soule and Scott Snyder in charge, I figure this one has a 50/50 shot.
I’ve loved and not-so-loved stories from both writers.
The Crow: Hark the Herald – IDW
You might be seeing a pattern here.
The Crow franchise has produced content that ranges from generation-defining (the original comic, the first movie) to embarrassing (the movie with David Boreanaz, several comics). It seems to be a property that you’re always taking a chance in buying. But Tim Seeley (there he is again) telling a Crow Christmas story seems like a safe bet to me.
Plus it’s a Christmas comic, so I have to get it.
Heartbeat #1 (of 5) – BOOM! Studios
Maria Llovet’s art caught my eye a few years ago on a fantastic horror book that seems to be done now, There’s Nothing There for Black Mask. Heartbeat looks a little too teen-angsty for my taste, but I wanted to mention it because Llovet is awesome and maybe you’d like it.
Masters of the Universe: Mer-Man 1/6 Scale Figure – Mondo
This figure is absolutely gorgeous and I knew it would be the one to test my resolve to not buy Mondo’s 12” Masters figures. I’ve seen He-Man and Skeletor in person and I don’t regret my decision to abstain from this line, but all of the pics I’ve seen of this one look so good and aquatic-themed stuff is my weakness. That’s why I own six completely shitty JAKKS Pacific WWF figures from 1998 mint on card.
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance Action Figures – Funko
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance is a phenomenal work of art unlike anything else I’ve ever seen. It’s beautiful, brutal, mesmerizing, and it delivers on the promise of the 1982 film beyond my wildest expectations.
I’m not even the biggest fan of the film, but this Netflix series eliminates the limitations that kept it from achieving the heights it could have. I feel like Jim Henson’s vision has finally been realized. From story to looks, it’s unbelievable.
Obviously I want toys. I’d prefer something from NECA or even McFarlane, but these Funkos will do. And be easier on the wallet. But the best thing about them? They should be hitting stores by the time you’re reading this!
Fortnite Banana Person – McFarlane Toys
This is a banana person from the video game Fortnite. Look at it. Love it. Want it.
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