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!
Dark Horse Comics– Joe Golem Occult Detective Outer Dark #1 - $3.99
By Mike Mignola and Patric Reynolds
Through Hellboy Mike Mignola has always stood out as a prolific writer in the horror genre, but it's nice to see him step away from those characters once in a while. This sequel to Joe Golem continues to follow the titular main character, a private investigator who protects the people from supernatural elements. This latest story is a welcome second chapter in the saga of Joe Golem, and is sure to leave it's mark on the imagination of readers everywhere.
Here's the solicit:
Two years after he killed a child-snatching monster and stopped an undead takeover in the Drowning City, occult detective Joe Golem searches for a man with superhuman strength who is attacking citizens under orders from the otherworldly voices in his head. But Joe has his own demons to wrestle with . . . 'Joe Golem continues to be everything you could possibly want it to be. Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden are a heck of a team, and Patric Reynolds continues to complement them perfectly by bringing unique worlds to life stunningly with his art.'-Big Comic Page
IDW Publishing - D4veocracy #4 - $3.99
By Ryan Ferrier and Valentin Ramon
Life hasn't always been easy for D4ve, erstwhile savior of 34rth and raging robot substance abuser. When president Roombo is assassinated D4ve decides he wants a stab at leading the robot world to greatness. There's only one catch, his running opponent is S4m a popular candidate that conceals his obvious madness under a veil of lies. When S4m uploads a virus that affects the whole world, will Dave survive long enough to win the election? The saga of D4ve has been an entertaining read, and this book is sure to set the stage for many hilarious stories to come.
Here's the solicit:
FINAL ISSUE! D4VE vs. The World. The fate of robot civilization will be decided. As the clock to extinction ticks, D4VE must make the ultimate sacrifice to save the planet from a renegade, internet incarnate madman. THIS IS THE 3ND.
IDW Publishing - Optimus Prime #7 - $3.99
By John Barber and Priscilla Tramontano
IDW's Optimus Prime has been a fairly interesting read so far and blissfully doesn't seem to have much to do with the shared universe and it's ongoing crossovers. Recently Earth has had war with the Junkion species, and managed to establish a fragile peace. With Optimus reaffirming his oath to protect peace at all costs and lay down his weapon, what extraterrestrial threats will he face next?
Here's the solicit:
With the Junkion invasion resolved peacefully, Optimus Prime takes a moment to plan the Autobot's next move on earth.
Valiant Entertainment - Rapture #1 - $3.99
By Matt Kindt and CAFU
Valiant is breaking new ground that other companies dare not tread with their concept of a "Standalone event", and event with no tie in comics. I decided to give this one a whirl and I was really impressed at what I found. Tama, the last of the Geomancers must lead a small team of heroes including Ninjak and Shadowman to defeat an ancient sorcerer determined to become a god. Will Ninjak and Shadowman be able to turn the tide in this fated conflict?
Here's the solicit:
On a scarred landscape, two otherworldly armies prepare to battle one last time, vying for control of a massive tower named from an ancient language no longer permitted to be spoken. One army is led by a primeval force named Babel, whose goal is singular: to breach 'Heaven' no matter the cost. The only thing standing in his way is a gray-haired barbaric warrior, filled with rage and regret, a man who sees this battle as his last chance for redemption. But he knows his depleted forces have little chance of victory unless aid comes. Enter Tama: A 12-year old girl on the crest of a hill overlooking the battle, who has just become humanity's only hope. The last in an ancient line of mystics who protect the Earth, she has foreseen this battle and knows millions will perish if she's unable to stop it. Now Tama and her ragtag team of malcontents - Ninjak, Shadowman and Punk Mambo - must somehow defeat an elder god hell bent on piercing the heavens.
Pick of the Week: BOOM! Studios – Victor LaValle's Destroyer #1 - $3.99
By Victor LaValle and Dietrich Smith
From award-winning Victor LaValle comes a tale of terror that broaches a road somewhat less traveled by centering on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. The modern day Prometheus has hid in the north pole for centuries, but global warming and man's exploitation of the wild have awakened him. Now that he's in ruthless pursuit of the ancestor of his creator, how many bodies will lie in his wake?
Here's the solicit:
When the last descendant of the Frankenstein family loses her only son to a police shooting, she turns to science for her own justice...putting her on a crash course with her family's original monster and his quest to eliminate humanity. An intense, unflinching story exploring the legacies of love, loss, and vengeance placed firmly in the tense atmosphere and current events of the modern-day United States.
Remain ever vigilant in the face of certain unnecessary costs, True Believers! Did I miss something you think deserves to be mentioned? As always, let me know in the comments below.