Wednesday's New Things: The Avalanche Continues

1. Marvel's strategy of flooding the market with new #1 issues continues this week unabated. From my perspective, the most important of these releases is the return to solo comics of former hero for hire Danny Rand, the Iron Fist. Iron Fist is my second favorite superhero-- Matt Fraction, Ed Brubaker and David Aja's book The Immortal Iron Fist is one of the great Marvel comic books of all time and, as Fraction once pointed out, the book is about a kung-fu billionaire; it sort of writes itself. After half a decade bouncing around from team book to team book, New Avengers to the Defenders and back again, he's back on his own, written and drawn by Kaare Andrews. The preview suggests that Andrews is mixing a little bit of Aja with a lot of early 80s Frank Miller, which I think is probably a recipe for success; although I expect this series will be short lived, it's going to be fun while it lasts. 

 2. These books are a little weirder; I almost wonder if they're a sign that Marvel is stretching itself just a little too thin with all of these new releases. The Doop miniseries is written by the character's co-creator Peter Milligan and drawn by David LaFuente; although I bet the target market for this series (fans of Milligan's X-Statix series with Michael Allred) will wish that both creators had come back for this, all they're going to have to do is open the book, and their disappointment will fall away. It's always hard to make small observations based on internet previews, but it looks like La Fuente drew and colored it in marker, which gives the art this kind of stunning, flexible quality, perfect for a wild character like Doop. The art is heavily stylized and cartoony, but not caricatured, which is a hard feat. It's too bad this book isn't an ongoing, I think it could be a big one. As for the Nightcrawler series from Chris Claremont and Todd Nuack, it seems like it's designed to appease to old school fans, just like most of these #1s are designed to attract new ones. Nuack's art is a little wonky, and this book feels less like a reinvention and more like a recapitulation of old tropes, a little disappointing since the publisher is doing so many new things at the moment. Still, there's a lot to be said for comfort, particularly right after the resurrection of one of your favorite characters. When I'm at the store this week, I may decide to take a shot on this one.

3. Finally, two worthwhile looking books featuring women characters and written or drawn or both by female creators are debuting this week. First is Shutter, from Joe Keatinge and Leila Lo Duca; frankly, I have no idea what its about, the solicitation is so broad as to be meaningless-- perhaps because the story concept suffers from the same problem. What photography has to do with anything is yet to be revealed. But it's got shades of Indiana Jones, Lo Duca's art is intriguing, and main character Kate Kristopher gets attacked by ghost ninjas on the fourth page, so at least it's sure to be fun. Also appearing this week is the camp adventure Lumberjanes, from Noelle Stevens, Grace Ellis, and Brooke Ellis. Published on Boom's "experimental" Boom Box imprint, Lumberjanes seems like another fun one, a camp adventure with a supernatural twist, it seems likely both to younger readers and older ones. The preview suggests that Ellis was influenced here as much by animation aesthetics as by comics aesthetics; it'll be hard to say no when it comes out in trade. 

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