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!
Titan Comics - Torchwood #4 - $3.99
By John Barrowman, Carole Barrowman, Antonio Fuso and Pasquale Qualano
If anything softens the blow of a television series being cancelled before it's due, it's some of those creators continuing the series in comic book form. In this case, it's sibling writers Carole Barrowman and Torchwood star John Barrowman. It's no surprise that John Barrowman would have a grasp on the Torchwood characters, and they've definitely delivered an excellent followup to Starz' Torchwood. It's not often I find a comic adaptation is anything like the television show, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that here.
Here's the solicit:
The Navigators need Jack's help to battle an alien threat from his past - but he's an ocean away and several bullet holes from being able to help them out! Gwen finds herself torn between two worlds, as Jack's quest threatens everything she holds dear - including the very core of Torchwood itself! And the Committee want the Ice Maiden and its crew (and its advanced alien technology) for their own purposes - and they'll kill anyone who gets in their way! The first arc of the ongoing Torchwood saga ends... but what a cliffhanger! We're back with more shocks and surprises - and the full creative team - for #5 in the October PREVIEWS!
Stranger Comics - Vampire Hunter D Message From Mars #1 - $3.99
By Sebastian A. Jones and Michael Broussard
From Kickstarter, Vampire Hunter D Message From Mars is based on a short story by Hideyuki Kikuchi that was never released in the United States. Michael Broussard really brings this story to life with his exquisite artwork, which is stunning to behold. If you're looking for a good post-apocalyptic vampire story, look no further.
Here's the solicit:
Drawn to Mars by an ancient message from Cecile, a girl who could see the future, D arrives to find a colony that is little more than a blood farm. With Left Hand by his side, D sets out to cleanse Mars of the vampiric scourge!
Dark Horse Comics - Dead Inside #1 - $3.99
By John Arcudi and Toni Fejzula
Crime thrillers aren't normally my cup of tea, but I can't deny that John and Toni put together an interesting book. This Dark Horse book follows a police detective in her investigation into a murder/suicide that takes place inside of a prison. If you're looking for something a little less strange and a little more realistic, then this may be for you.
Here's the solicit:
The Jail Crimes Division of the Sheriff's Office in Mariposa County investigates crimes committed inside county jails. With a limited number of suspects who can't escape, these are usually easy cases to solve-but not this one. As Detective Linda Caruso gets closer to the heart of the case, she discovers uncomfortable truths about her friends, her job, and herself. o Perfect for fans of crime and prison television, such as Law & Order, NCIS, Orange Is the New Black, American Crime Story, or Making a Murderer. o A new series from Rumble writer John Arcudi and Veil artist Toni Fejzula.
Dynamite Entertainment - Green Hornet Reign Of The Demon #1 - $3.99
By David Liss and Kewber Baal
For those kids in the audience, Green Hornet follows a wealthy man who adopts a criminal persona to defend the law from criminal threats, aided by his bodyguard Kato. Dynamite brought back this beloved character, and it is a welcome addition to their line which includes many pulp heroes. Don't let the stigma of the live action film fool you, this book has the look and feel of a classic story and was a pretty interesting read so far.
Here's the solicit:
There's a new hero in town - and it isn't Britt Reid! The Swashbuckler's showing up the Green Hornet at his own game-but the cavalier vigilante has made Britt suspicious of his motives. Is the Swashbuckler a real hero? Or is one of the Hornet's foes playing a far more subtle game? Meanwhile, the demonic kingpin of crime - Demone -has his own nefarious plans...and they spell doom for our distracted heroes!
Pick of the Week: IDW Publishing - Star Trek Green Lantern Vol. 2 #1 - #3.99
By Mike Johnson and Angel Hernandez
And last but not least, I bring you the inter-company crossover everyone is talking about, Star Trek/Green Lantern: Stranger Worlds! I was excited to read this book because it seemed like a fun idea, and it definitely did not disappoint. Everything about this book is top-notch. The story, the art, and the characterization all combine to create an interesting narrative of the Green Lantern Corps and their mythos being inducted into the Federation of Planets. I, unfortunately, missed out on the first crossover, but I didn't have any problems catching up thinks to a little retelling from Guy Gardner. I really can't wait to see what happens in the next issue.
Here's the Solicit:
The galaxy-spanning crossover epic continues in this sequel to the blockbuster STAR TREK/GREEN LANTERN: THE SPECTRUM WAR! Captain Kirk and Hal Jordan lead the combined might of Starfleet and the Lantern Corps on an all-new adventure against new foes from both franchises! Don't miss the crossover event of the 21st Century...and the 23rd! Following the blockbuster success of last year's Star Trek/Green Lantern, DC Entertainment and IDW once again bring you the best team-up in the galaxy!
Well, that was a fantastic week in Comics Less Than Five Dollars, and it had a ton of fun surprises in store for us. Don't forget to join in on the comments, and I look forward to next week's article!