When I was a younger man things were a lot different than they are now. Not all of it was for the better. As depressing as the internet can be it does make it easier for everyone's dirty little secrets to come to light. I don't miss that part, so much. But what I do miss is the way comics used to be priced. Back in the day, I could scrounge some change out of my Gran's couch cushions and take it to a local recycled bookstore that was renovated out of an opera house my family used to own. I would swagger through the front entrance tipping a derby at the doorman, and flashing a glint of silver between my fingers. The cashier nodded, and pressed a button under the register. A bookcase slid across the floor revealing an iron wrought staircase, and I descended it into what I always imagined was what used to be the orchestra pit under the theater. That is where I found what I desired: Rows and rows of white boxes filled with every comic book imaginable, illuminated by soft white light that somehow filled the entire room. A subtle series of bells sounded from an unseen source, and a single poster board said the words I would never forget "All comics $.25." It was a magical time, but unfortunately one that would not last.
Then quickly things changed, and comics were no longer $1.25. Suddenly they were $2.50 and came with a bullshit trading card I already had. Put a crappy Wolverine Hologram on the cover, and now they are $3.00. Make that cover two pages and it's $3.25. Make the Hologram 3D, and now the book is $3.50. The whole pricing point just kept getting worse and worse. At one point a comic book fan and affluent banker looked at me condescendingly through a monocle and said "Outrageous prices, you say? Perhaps if you would stop being so lazy and get a second job you could afford comics". Then he cackled like the Penguin and drove off in a Ford Escort trailing exhaust and laughter in his wake. Comic book fans all over cried out for a Champion. We needed a man so large in stature and girth that the truth could not escape the pull of the gravity of his conclusions.
We needed Jude Terror. For a time, things were good. Jude's Legendary "5 Comics for Under $5 Dollars" articles were a big hit. At the height of their power, they did something that no one thought was possible. Jude's article caused DC Comics to reduce their entire line below the $5 dollar pricing point. Maybe it had to do with something else, maybe not. But something inescapable changed in Jude. Someone offered him money, and suddenly he could afford $5 comics. The internet cried out for help again.
I answered that desperate call. Rising from the Ashes of the success of Judas Terror, I give you the phoenix reborn! Welcome to ALL-NEW ALL-DIFFERENT SAY NO TO $5 COMICS NOW!
Boom! Studios - Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers - $3.99
By Kyle Higgins Art and Hendry Prasetya
I can already see that it's going to be a busy week for nostalgia. For my first pick, I'm going to go with Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #9 because Boom! Studios has done an excellent job of translating this TV show to the comic book page. The art is crisp, and the story has been very fun to read. This would be a good read for the Power Rangers fan.
Here's the solicit:
While Tommy and Jason face off against Black Dragon on the Moon, the rest of the Rangers seek a means to jump-start their powers and save their Zords his influence! With Billy's life on the line, will the Ranges overcome their greatest challenge or find defeat in the claws of this familiar foe?
Dark Horse Comics - Conan the Slayer #5 - $3.99
By Cullen Bunn and Sergio Davila
I've loved the majority of Dark Horse's Conan comics, so it does not surprise me that I would love this one as well. Between Cullen Bunn's exquisite writing and Sergio Davila's impeccable art this is an easy comic to promote, and 5 issues in it shouldn't be too difficult to find it in back issues. I hope not, at least.
Here's the solicit:
The barbarian, the new chief, and the Kozaki raiders pursue the murderer to his hideout, Gorey Castle. When they are met by a horde of undead, Taraslan takes matters into his own hands . . . but is he in over his head? Superstar writer Cullen Bunn (Harrow County, Uncanny X-Men) and artist Sergio Davila (Red Sonja, Swords of Sorrow) team up to bring a new chapter of Conan's story to life!
Oni Press - Invader Zim #15 - $3.99
By Eric Trueheart and Warren Wucinich
Invader Zim is based on a Nickleodeon TV show that as created by Jhonen Vasquez, the creator of cult hit Johnny the Homicidal Maniac. While Invader Zim was only on the air for a short time, it was absolutely hilarious, won an Emmy, and is now considered to be a cult classic. I am very excited that it returned in comic book form, and it looks like they did a fantastic job with their creative team.
Here's the solicit:
What is the secret truth behind Miss Bitters? Is she a undead witch? A crone-beast as old as time itself? A dark instrument of infernal vengeance in a smelly dress? Everyone has a theory, and when Miss Bitters doesn't show up for Skool one morning, they all come out of the woodwork.
Papercutz - Tales From The Crypt #1 - $3.99
By Gerry Conway and Robert Hack
Next we have a return of a legendary horror comic, Tales from the Crypt. Boasting a return of the classic horror anthology series with superstar creative teams, this comic looks poised to bring the classic series back in a big way. Here's hoping they achieve success, and get the TV show back on the air.
Here's the solicit:
Presenting a Trio of Terror Tales inspired by the Root of All Evil-Money! This issue's main attraction is 'Opening Fright,' in which we discovered Alexander Hamilton was literally turning over in his grave regarding a particular award-winning, Hip-Hop Broadway musical. That's right - Alexander Hamilton has risen from the grave! Plus: An evil landlord intends to maximize the profit potential on his property in New York City's Financial District in a mad get-richer-quicker scheme in 'Fi-Die Another Day,' and doesn't everyone want to make a big killing in the stock market? One Broker hopes to do just that in 'Maul Street'!
Pick of the Week: IDW Comics - MASK Mobile Armor Strike Kommand - #3.99
By Brandon Easton and Tony Vargas
Last but not least, I give you my pick of the week: MASK Mobile Armor Strike Kommand #1! If there is one thing IDW does well, it has to be make the things from our childhood fun again, and this looks like no exception. In my circle of friends it seems like you can't even mention Transformers in casual conversation without the discussion ending up being all about MASK, so I know it is a much beloved series. It looks like IDW is on the precipice of turning another toy and cartoon property into a smash hit.
Here's the Solicit:
Launching from the events of REVOLUTION! The M.A.S.K. team streaks into a dangerous, unstable landscape of dark wars, high intrigue and non-stop action where they'll encounter the nearly unstoppable threat of Miles Mayhem and his black ops squadron known as V.E.N.O.M. How will an untested Matt Trakker lead M.A.S.K. through a complex new world order where nothing is what it seems? Join writer Brandon Easton (Marvel's Agent Carter), artist Tony Vargas (Rot and Ruin) and cover artist Tommy Lee Edwards for an exciting 21st century spin on the classic series where 'illusion is the ultimate weapon!' Part of the new Hasbro shared universe torn from the pages of Revolution! Featuring variant covers by Sonny Liew (Dr. Fate) and Paul Pope! Special back-up material in every issue written by Tommy Lee Edwards!
Well, it looks like this week is certainly shaping up to be an exciting week for inexpensive comics. Don't forget to join me below in the comments! Suggestions for future picks are always welcome.