Welcome back to Conskipper’s New Comic Day Picks for the week of September 22, 2021!
Get ready for a plethora of choices this week from around the comic spectrum, with a heavy dose of super action, full of new beginnings and unfortunate endings.
–The Death of Doctor Strange #1 (Marvel Comics): Say it ain’t so! Doctor Strange is headed to the great beyond for good? As everyone knows in the world of comics, there’s “dead” and then there’s “Uncle Ben” dead (formerly referred to as “Bucky dead” before his late return after over 60 years of being “on ice”). So is the “Good Doctor” really gone for good? Probably not, but fans will still want to read about who is responsible for his murder and who will step up to become the next Sorcerer Supreme. Jed MacKay and Lee Garbett begin the journey in issue one and so, far, the story is intriguing and highlights the best aspects of Strange’s life (after death).
–Black Hammer Visions #8 (Dark Horse Comics): Scott Snyder and David Rubin take their crack at a character from the Black Hammer universe in the outstanding anthology series, Black Hammer: Visions. Snyder and Rubin bring the Horseless Rider to center stage, in a “dueling narrative of two different sins over time”, with his1880s origin story and a trip to a 1950s rest home in the South West where the vengeful Rider can never get a good night’s rest or a reprieve from his duties. Snyder’s take on the Rider is right up his noir alley and Rubin’s artwork carries a classic and 21st century quality which is perfect for a tale set in the past (two different pasts actually).
–Guardians of the Galaxy #18 (Marvel Comics): Al Ewing and Juan Frigeri complete their excellent run on Guardians of the Galaxy with issue #18 (#180 if you are keeping up with legacy numbering) with the final chapter in The Last Annihilation. Ewing’s idea to bring a major supernatural threat in the form of Dormammu to space has worked perfectly, reconfiguring and refreshing the elements we have come to expect from the series. Although this issue effectively ends The Guardians monthly book for the time being, the groundwork has been laid for future storylines and the Guardians inevitable return. If you haven’t been reading Ewing and Frigeri’s run, the bittersweet ending does give you the chance to track down the trades and back issues.
–X-Men Legends #7 (Marvel Comics): Larry Hama returns to the world of Wolverine with the start of an all-new adventure after nearly twenty-five years away from Logan, with a story set in the middle of his epic run. The X-Men Legends concept has worked well for other returns to classic material (such as Louise and Walter Simonson and Peter David’s recent X-Factor arcs) and is a great way to lure lapsed comic readers back into the fold. Hama brings back frequent Wolverine compatriot Jubilee, as the pair return to Japan to track down some missing mutants. Naturally, Lady Deathstrike and The Hand have something to say about and the ninja battles commence! Billy Tan (who is adept at drawing swordfights) joins Hama for an action-packed three-parter, that will also bring in two of Wolverine’s most famous foes, one furry and the other one red, over the next three months.
–Aquaman: The Becoming #1 (DC Comics): Jackson Hyde leaves Aqualad behind and steps forward as a new version of Aquaman in Brandon Thomas, Diego Olortegui, and Wade Von Grawbadger new six part series. Not that it is going to be easy, of course, with the legacy of his villainous father Black Manta haunting him at every turn and a training regiment designed by Arthur Curry and Bruce Wayne. Unfortunately for Jackson, the sins of the father result in accusations of sabotage and destruction, and the young hero has to make sense of coplex world, both above and below the waves. DC always does a great job with elevating legacy heroes, and Thomas, Olortegui, and Von Grawbadger are up to the task in this first issue.
That’s it for this week. Keep supporting your local comic shop in a safe and responsible manner.