Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Kieron Gillen’s Marvel Work (Eternals, Loki, X-Men); Original Sin; DC’s 2K Title Drop with Sandman, OMAC and Manhunter; Bloom County; Umbrella Academy

In this week’s Comixology (at Amazon) sales, we’ve got discounts on Kieron Gillen’s Marvel work – Eternals / Uncanny X-Men / Journey Into Mystery / etc.; Marvel’s Original Sin Event; another big block of DC collections, including Sandman; IDW cuts the prices on some classic newspaper strip collections; and we couldn’t really have a new season of Umbrella Academy without a sale on the original material, could we?

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

Journey into Gillen

The Marvel Kieron Gillen Sale runs through Monday, 6/27.

We find it really sad that a “Marvel” Gillen sale does not include our two favorite works of the bunch: Darth Vader and Doctor Aphra.  Yes, there will other Star Wars sales, but if you’re talking Gillen, that’s what we’d put at the top of the heap.

So let’s start out with a cleaner recap of the major items in this sale:

  • The Eternals with Eric Ribić.  $0.99 single issues only and the collected edition is NOT on sale for reasons known only to Amazon and/or Marvel.
  • War Hammer 40,000: Marneus Calgar with Jacen Burrows
  • Journey Into Mystery (i.e. Loki) with Doug Braithwaite and Richard Elson (among others) – omnibus editions
  • Uncanny X-Men – omnibus editions
  • Young Avengers with Jamie McKelvie – omnibus edition
  • Thor with Billy Tan / Richard Elson / Doug Braithwaite – omnibus edition
  • Iron Man with Greg Land / Dale Eaglesham / Joe Bennett / Luke Ross

What’s good?  This one’s going to be more personal preference than with many sales and to that end, we’d point out that we did read the War Hammer volume and it felt like that’s a book you’ll get a LOT more out of it if you’re a gamer.  (But if you’re already into War Hammer, you’ll probably love it.)  Past that, Journey Into Mystery is where Gillen really popped onto the Marvel radar, Young Avengers is the familiar team of Gillen/McKelvie and Gillen’s Mr. Sinister in Uncanny X-Men definitely has had influence.

Journey Into Mystery   Young Avengers   Uncanny X-Men

Casting the First Stone 

The Marvel Original Sin Sale runs through Monday, 6/27.

We’d probably call this a one book sale – Original Sin is a big Event by Jason Aaron and Mike Deodato. Someone’s killed the Watcher, dirty secrets are bubbling up from everyone’s past and… more would get into spoilers.  There are a few tie-in volumes also listed, but our recollection is that the tie-in volumes are not really necessary. While this is often the case with Events, it might be even more so here. Proceed with tie-ins only if they’re scratching an itch for you.

Original Sin

When they say “Multiverse,” they mean “Infinity”

The DC Multiverse and Beyond eBooks Sale runs through Monday, 7/4.

This is another entry in the new DC trend of dropping ~2000 collections without much noticeable curation, so you can pick through it at your leisure. Lowest prices are $4.99, but most non-YA doesn’t get below $5.99.

With the Netflix adaptation looming a little over a month away, they’re leading this sale off with Sandman.  And it’s certainly a classic series. The question is whether it will dip below $5.99 when the show drops and we don’t have an answer for that. DC’s been holding the line at $5.99 for most of their sales in the last couple months.

Of possible interest from the more recently published volumes (DC does wait awhile before applying discounts):

Jack Kirby’s OMAC: One Man Fighting Corps is listed at $5.99. If you’re not familiar with it, OMAC is a surprisingly subversive dystopian take on a future where billionaires/corporations are running amok. There are superhero trappings, but it’s really a science fiction adventure/satire.

And for something else out of left field in a good way, $5.99 will get Manhunter: The Deluxe Edition. This collects the Detective Comics serial by Archie Goodwin and Walt Simonson. An absolute classic run, it’s not as mainstream well-known because the Paul Kirk character wasn’t continued in his own title (for obvious reasons). It’s just an excellent stand-alone tale by two legends of the art form.

Sandman   OMAC   Manhunter

Where’s My Umbrella?

The Umbrella Academy Sale runs through Tuesday, 6/28.

Why yes, there’s a new season on Netflix and we might even start on that tonight. Funny how sales line up with such things…

This one’s a lot easier to define: it’s a series by Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba about an extremely dysfunctional family of superhumans who are more than a little scarred by their adoptive upbringing.  One series link for the collected editions and no fuss.  Good comic, too. We enjoyed it.

Umbrella Academy

Those Things in the Newspaper

The IDW Newspaper Classics Sale runs through Thursday, 6/30.

And by classics they mean comic strips.  In this case, we’re looking at:

Academia Waltz   Bloom County   For Better or For Worse

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Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Chip Zdarsky’s Marvel Titles (DD, Spidey, Invaders); Milestone Media; Squirrel Girl and Grendel

In this week’s Comixology (at Amazon) sales, we’ve got discounts on Chip Zdarsky Marvel run – think Daredevil and Spidey, Squirrel Girl, Grendel and Milestone Media from the DC files.

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

The Once and Future Mayor of Toronto

The Marvel Chip Zdarsky Sale runs through Monday, 6/20.

You did know that long before the Kingpin was mayor of NYC, Chip Zdarsky ran for mayor of Toronto, right?  We love that guy.

So, as you probably have heard, Zdarsky’s taking over Batman shortly and has been enjoying a very productive run at Marvel.  Let’s break down the main offerings.

So what’s good? We wouldn’t say “no” to any of it, with the caveat that we tend to look the other way when Steve Gerber isn’t the one writing Howard.

Daredevil is the title that’s probably gotten the most attention and it’s a very good one, well worth your time.  Mayor Fisk, a bizarre game of chess with billionaires and ‘ole Hornhead in jail… we have nothing but love.

You’ll hear big proponents for the Spidey work, particularly the mini’s.

However, the one that we’re the most in the bag for is actually InvadersThe original superteam of WWII reunites in the present day to try and figure out what’s going on with Namor’s erratic behavior. It’s sort of/ kind of a Sub-Mariner title, addressing several sub-plots from other titles over the years and attempting to streamline his timeline a bit. Conspiracies, global politics, Captain America. We miss this one coming out.

Daredevil by Zdarsky   Invaders

But Does She Know Bullwinkle?

The Marvel Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Sale runs through Monday, 6/20.

OK… this one is a little bit of a maze of multiple packagings of the same comics. Here’s how we’d probably approach this:

  • Unbeatable Squirrel Girl series “2015A” and “2015B” by Ryan North and Erica Henderson. This is where everything starts and the original Squirrel Girl appearances are in the first volume.  These are omnibus editions and take you up to #31 of the “2015B” series.
  • To get the rest of the series, switch over to the single volumes and V.9 – 12 will take you from issue #32 to the end. Coincidentally, this is where Derek Charm pops in as artist.

That’s the easy way. Now, if you want the absolute cheapest way, you want to sub in these two alternate packaging volumes for V.2 and V.3 of those omnibuses above (i.e. #1-21 of “2015B”).

Yes… this is way more complicated than it should be.

Squirrel Girl

The McDuffie Legacy

The DC Spotlight: Milestone Sale runs through Monday 6/20.

As you may recall, Milestone was relaunched not too long ago, so what we have here is a mix of the original run and the new run.  Let’s try and organize this a bit, since this is a real mess to try and navigate on Amazon.

Original (with $0.99 single issues)

New (with $1.99 single issues)

So, what is Milestone? It was originally an imprint set up at (but not owned by) DC by Dwayne McDuffie, Denys Cowan, Derek Dingle and Michael Davis. It last around 4 years, initially making quite a splash and then fading a bit amidst strong rumors of backdoor politics at DC.  You remember the Static Shock cartoon? That’s Static from Milestone.

Creators that emerged through Milestone?  A bunch. Including Mark Bright, JH Williams III, John Paul Leon, Tommy Lee Edwards and Jamal Igle.

Recently, it reformed with Cowan and Dingle joined by Reginald Hudlin, who’s show-running the revived titles.

We’re going from distant memory on this, since we mostly switched over to collected editions a few years back, the original Milestone material has been mostly out of circulation and the collected editions mostly haven’t dropped on the new material.

Our favorite Milestone book is actually the ’12 run of Xombi by John Rozum and Frazier Irving. Great book, but only the first issue is available, so we’re not bothering with a link… and we’re waiting for the original Xombi to get reissued.

We do remember, and think very highly of, the first Hardware arc by Dwayne McDuffie and Denys Cowan. Think Tony Stark inventing his armor while in a sort of indentured servitude to Lex Luthor. It’s a meditation on control and a pretty spot-on commentary about exclusive contracts and non-compete agreements. If you’ve seen some of the legalese from the tech industry around the time this was written, you might even say it had a certain basis in reality.

Past that, McDuffy didn’t write everything and Cowan didn’t draw everything… but their fingerprints are all over the place and those originals are worth a peek while they’re on sale.

Hardware

Whither Beowulf?

The Dark Horse Grendel Sale runs through Monday 6/27.

We wonder if there’s a TV debut approaching?  Hmmm…

Anyway, this is Matt Wagner’s long running (since 1982) series of the malevolent spirit of Grendel and it’s manifestations. Originally more a crime/noir with a bit o’ fantasy around the edges, it grew into horror and science fiction with some serious evolution along the way. This one’s a little easier to parse than most:

Start with the Omnibus editions.  V.1 will be what Netflix is initially adapting. V. 1-4 are the core, with Grendel Tales being side anthologies.  Disregard the expensive, not yet released, new Netflix edition of V.1.

Grendel: Devil’s Odyssey (with Matt Wagner doing art, as well as writing) is the latest continuation and takes place after Omnibus V.4

And for a side-excursion, Grendel Vs. The Shadow has the Hunter Rose version of Grendel (see: V.1) squaring off against the pulp detective.

Grendel Omnibus   Grendel: Devil's Odyssey   Grendel vs. The Shadow

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Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Ant-Man, DC Pride, Jeff Lemire’s Dark Horse Titles

Recent additions to the Comixology (at Amazon) sales include – DC’s Pride sale with Hellblazer, The Invisibles and Snagglepus; Ant-Man from Marvel and Dark Horse’s Jeff Lemire catalog.

Tuesday’s look at the X-Factor and Mickey Mouse sales are also still in effect.

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

You’d Think This Sale Would Be All Month

The DC Pride eBook Sale runs through Monday, 6/13.

It’s Pride month and DC’s curated a bit under 400 titles for this sale.  Let’s look at the lower priced options first.

It’s always a good time for Hellblazerwith many of the earlier volumes going for $5.99. Hellblazer was consistently entertaining over it’s original run, too. (We also can’t say enough good things about the most recent series.)

Completely at $5.99/volume, you’ve also got Grant Morrison’s The Invisibles an ancient secret society that advances humanity through anarchy (read: freedom) clashes with the forces of order (read: the aristocracy); i.e. an urban fantasy about sticking it to The Man. All kinds of artists you’ll recognize on this: Steve Yeowell, Jill Thompson, Phil Jimenez, Chris Weston… even early Ivan Reis.

But perhaps the most Pride Month book of the lot is Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles. And an unusual book it is. Mark Russell and Mike Freehan recast Snagglepuss as Tennessee Williams-esque playwright in 1950s NYC. The House Unamerican Activities Committee is trolling showbiz for subversives and communists. Snagglepuss is not without his enemies and being gay only puts a bigger target on his back. Yes, Snagglepuss as a dark social and political satire. And it’s good! Worth it for the Dorothy Parker bits, alone.

Hellblazer   The Invisibles   Snagglepuss

What Did the Pink Panther Say To The Ant?

The Marvel Ant-Man Sale runs through Monday, 6/13.

Since there are multiple formats for much of this, we’re going to walk through the highlights in the cheapest formats (which means omnibus, if available).

Ant-Man/Giant-Man Masterworks is one of the occasions we’ll give Masterworks a nod over Epics. In this case, the Epic is a higher price point and isn’t complete. We will caution you that this wasn’t one of Marvel’s better known Silver Age strips for a reason, but you get Stan Lee, Larry Leiber, Jack Kirby, Don Heck, Dick Ayers, Carl Burgos and Bob Powell.  Still, it’s the Hank Pym run.

Ant-Man: Scott Lang is a compilation book of the early appearances of Scott Lang in the Ant-Man suit. i.e., Lang before Lang became more of a comedy character. This is a relatively David Michelinie-driven volume with the solo 2-parter in Marvel Premiere, an Avengers arc and an Iron Man arc.

Irredeemable Ant-Man is the Robert Kirkman / Phil Hester run with Eric O’Grady finding the Ant-Man suit. At this point, O’Grady’s an unethical SHIELD agent playing both sides against the middle and it’s a bit of a farce. And this is where Ant-Man starts being played as an action comedy. Something that’s still largely the case.

The Astonishing Ant-Man: The Complete Collection is the omnibus for the Nick Spencer era, with art by Ramon Rosanas, Anapaolo Martello and Brent Schoonover. This is where Ant-Man is reset closer to the films as more of an action-farce. Scott Lang has worse luck than Peter Parker and he tries to get his life together, get a job and start co-parenting his daughter… but things are seldom that easy.

Ant-Man: World Hive by new Spidey scribe Zeb Wells and Dylan Burnett finds Scott Lang forced to team up with Swarm. Yes, a Nazi scientist with a body made up of bees. There’s an honest-to-goodness invasion/conspiracy to create an insect uprising and he’s having the hardest time getting the Avengers… or Spidey… or even Black Cat to take him seriously. We particularly enjoyed this one.

Ant-Man Masterworks      Ant-Man: World Hive

Another Jeff (Collect Them All)

The Dark Horse Jeff Lemire Sale runs through Monday, 6.13.

As you might expect, this is dominated by the Black Hammer franchise, a superhero universe devised by Lemire and Dean Ormston.

The Black Hammer is the core series/story by Lemire and (mostly) Ormston.

The World of Black Hammer is the umbrella title for a series of mini-series that flesh out some of the characters and other corners of this universe. Lemire scripts and all sorts of artists pop up.

Note: the Library Editions tend to be a little more expensive than the regular volumes in digital and this sale.

And since Jeff Lemire is very capable of doing the illustrations himself, here are the single issues for Mazebooka recently completed urban fantasy series where Lemire did what we like to call “The Full Cartoonist.”

Black Hammer   Unbelievable Teens   Mazebook

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Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: X-Factor, The Hulk vs. The Thing, and Mickey Mouse

Recent additions to the Comixology (at Amazon) sales include – the many incarnations of X-Factor, the ongoing slugfest between The Hulk and The Thing and Disney’s Mickey Mouse across the years… and continents.

Since the dates the sales are getting announced have been shuffled, we’re playing this week a little differently and will be back Friday to talk about the new DC sale and what else pops up during the week.

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

Mutations

The Marvel X-Factor Legacy Sale runs through Monday, 6/13.

This one can basically be defined as the actual “X-Factor” titles and various crossovers, Events and guest appearances.  Let’s focus on the X-Factor titles.

  • X-Factor ’86-’98 – The first run, and a long one in the days before constant relaunches. The two things highlighted by the collections are Louise & Walt Simonson run and Peter David’s first run with Joe Quesada and Larry Stroman.
  • X-Factor ’05-’13 – commonly referred to as the Peter David era, and yes, he’s written a ton of X-Factor. This is where Madrox the Multiple Man steps in with the detective agency motif.   (You can save a couple bucks on the early volumes with the X-Factor by Peter David: The Complete Collection omnibuses)
  • All-New X-Factor ’14-’15 – I’m sure you’ll be shocked to know X-Factor was relaunched in Marvel’s “All-New” era. Still Peter David.
  • X-Factor ’20-’21 – The House of X / Powers of X era run by Leah Williams and David Baldeon

And then all manner of X-Men family Event/Crossover collections.

Recommendations? It depends on what you’re looking for.  The first two Epic Collections of the original run are more of the traditional X-Men school (and since it’s reuniting the original team, it should be). When Peter David pops up later in that run, things get quirky in a hurry.  It’s not like David is exclusively a humorist, but there’s a lot more humor in his work. His second run is a completely different creature than the how X-Factor began.

X-Factor   X-Factor by Peter David

The Classic Marvel Punch-Up

The Marvel Hulk Vs. Thing Sale runs through Thursday, 6/9.

Oh, yes… this is a reoccurring confrontation that goes back to the EARLY days of Marvel: Ben Grimm facing off with the Hulk. More often than not, this would happen in the pages of Fantastic Four and the various writers would go back to it every so often.

What you’re looking at here depends on whether you’re more of a Hulk person or FF person. After all that first Hulk Epic Collection is duplicating content from the FF Epic Collection and we personally find FF to be the stronger feature at the time.  And actually, that’s probably what we’d recommend here if you were only picking one – Fantastic Four Epic Collection Book 2, which also gives you some early Doctor Doom, Namor and X-Men, in addition The Hulk.

Fantastic Four

House of Mouse

The Fantagraphics Disney Masters and Mickey Mouse Sale runs through Wednesday, 6/22.

This is really two sales under one umbrella:

First, it’s a sale on the Floyd Gottfredson Mickey Mouse comic strip. While perhaps not as heralded as Dick Tracy or Terry and the Pirates, Gottfredson’s Mickey Mouse was an influential adventure strip and he stayed on it for decades.

Second, it’s a sale on the “Disney Master’s” line, which probably needs a word of explanation. It’s not clear that ALL of these titles are from the international markets, but certainly a number of them are Disney comics produced for the European markets (where Disney is very popular) and are making a US market debut.

Mickey Mouse   Mickey Mouse

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Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Shang Chi, Ms. Marvel, Captain Marvel, Superman, Green Lantern and Elfquest

This week’s Comixology (at Amazon) sales include Marvel’s transmedia heroes: Shang Chi and Ms. Marvel (Kamala Khan), plus the original Kree Captain Marvel. DC highlights include Superman, Green Lantern and Jimmy Olsen, while Dark Horse discounts Elfquest.

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

(Former) Master of Kung Fu

The Marvel Shang Chi Sale runs through Monday, 6/6.

Shang Chi has a… complicated story at Marvel that involves a lot of “inside Baseball” maneuvering behind the scenes.  There are basically three periods to the character:

Period #1 is what we’ll call the “classic” period, for lack of a better term. Master of Kung Fu started out as a licensing deal for the old Fu Manchu novels.  In original run, Shang is the son of Fu Manchu, who’s rejected his ways and is working with an elderly Sir Dennis Nayland Smith (protagonist of the novels) and British Intelligence against Fu Manchu’s schemes. When Doug Moench settled in as writer, especially with Paul Gulacy, Mike Zeck and/or Gene Day on art duties, it settled into a sort of pulpy espionage comic with touches of fantasy around the edges.  It’s also widely considered one of Marvel’s best works of the ’70s.  The series technically lasted past Doug Moench leaving for DC, but only by a couple issues.  Moench would eventually return for a Marvel Comics Presents serial (alongside a revival of another 70s cult star, Man-Thing) and a special.

There are two Epic Collections of this run, though the second is probably more representative of the series.

Eventually, Marvel decided to revive the character a little more actively, but in the 00’s, they no longer had the Fu Manchu license, so they updated Shang’s costume to more of a track suit (*cough* Bruce Lee *cough*) and just didn’t talk about his father and/or tried to switch his father to The Yellow Claw, a 50s Marvel Fu Manchu knock-off that appeared every once in a while. In this period, Shang was usually popping up in team books, like Secret Avengers.

Then, a bit more recently (and likely influenced by Marvel Studios), Marvel decided maybe it wasn’t such a good thing to have one of their most prominent Asian characters rooted in the most famous Yellow Peril franchise.  So they pulled in heavy hitter Gene Lueng Yang, Dike Ruan and Phillip Tan to relaunch Shang Chi as more of a fantasy adventure hero. An ongoing series followed shortly thereafter.  It’s a pretty big shift between eras. If you’re familiar with the character from the films, this is the version you’re looking for.

Master of Kung Fu   Secret Avengers   Shang-Chi

You Look Marvelous

The Marvel Ms. Marvel Sale runs through Monday 6/20.

This would be Ms. Marvel as in Kamala Khan, not the current Captain Marvel, Carol Danvers. Hmm… it’s like there was a TV show coming out or something?  Let’s break this down by volume, since there have been relaunches.

  • Ms. Marvel ’14-15 – The original run with G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona as the primary artist
  • Ms. Marvel ’15-’19 – How silly is this relaunch? The collected edition number doesn’t even reset! It’s still Wilson and Alphona, although the artist rotate a bit as it goes on.
  • Magnificent Ms. Marvel ’91-’21 – Relaunched after Wilson’s departure, this is written by Saladin Ahmed with Minkyu Jung and Joey Vazquez as the lead artists
  • Ms. Marvel: Beyond the Limit – The most recent mini-series (only single issues are on sale) by Samira Ahmed and Andrés Genolet.

There’s a selection of Champions, where Ms. Marvel was a member, also on sale.

Recommendations? We thought Ms. Marvel was at its best early in the run, before it got too integrated into the Marvel universe, but that’s just us.  Definitely start with Wilson’s run, though.  It made quite the mainstream splash.

Ms. Marvel

Speaking of Marvelous…

The Marvel Captain Mar-Vell Sale runs through Monday, 6/6.

Yes, things have gotten complex enough that Marvel is calling him by his Kree name of Mar-Vell. This would be Marvel’s original Captain Marvel, who’s title Carol Danvers took up in recent years… yet, only one of the two series comprising the bulk of the sale is of the original Marvel.

What we’re looking at:

  • Captain Marvel ’68-’79 – This being the original run most people think of.
  • Captain Marvel ’02-’04 – This being the adventure of the orginal Mar-Vell’s son, Genesis. Written by Peter David with seemingly a different artist for each arc.

Recommendations? If you’re not looking to get the full run of Masterworks for the original run, we’d point you towards two volumes:

  1. Captain Marvel by Jim Starlin: The Complete Collection – Get this in place of Masterworks V. 3. It also contains the Death of Captain Marvel graphic novel and some other material for a slightly high page count.  This is the first Thanos storyline and Starlin’s Captain Marvel is the character’s high point.
  2. Captain Marvel Masterworks V. 4 – This volume is largely forgotten, but a friend made this magically appear in our Comixology account a couple years back and we enjoyed it. Steve Englehart and Al Milgrim pick up where Starlin leaves off and run with it for a bit. The Supreme Intelligence schemes and Ronan accuses. Not quite to the legendary level of Starlin, but these two volumes are effectively the “Best of.”

Captain Marvel by Jim Starlin   Captain Marvel

Crisis On the Road To Utopia

The DC Road To Dark Crisis eBook Sale runs through Monday, 6/13.

These “Road To” titles always make us think the marketing departments are Bob Hope/Bing Crosby fans…

So, while this is supposed to be a Dark Crisis lead-in sale, the 1000-ish comics in it suggest that might be hyperbole.  Or perhaps DC will prove us wrong and the Meg (Princess Diaries) Cabot / Cara McGee Black Canary: Ignite YA OGN is really leading into Dark Crisis?

There’s obvious a LOT on sale, so it’s worth a browse.  Recommendations? Sure.

Superman: Man of Tomorrow, Vol. 1: Hero of Metropolis is a bona fide hidden gem. Completely under most radars as a digital first comic, this is a string of connected “classic” Superman tales as a conspiracy unfolds in the background… with the Parasite, Metallo and a giant ape in the mix. It also has a strong sense of humor with a subplot about how hard it is to stash your clothes when changing into costume. Robert Venditti writes it, Paul Pelletier is the primary artist.  Probably our favorite Superman in at least a couple years. (Plus, $5.99 is one of the lower price points, here.)

While a little more expensive at $8.99 (but at least you’re getting 12 issues, here), Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen: Who Killed Jimmy Olsen by Matt Fraction and Steve Leiber is an instant classic. This is a surprisingly densely plotted screwball adventure that simultaneously calls back to the over-the-top silliness of the Silver Age. As Jimmy Olsen tries to stay alive long enough to solve his own murder, we witness: a drunken marriage in Gorilla City, an ancestral feud between the Luthors and the Olsens, podcast pranks and… look, OF COURSE there’s a giant turtle. A masterpiece.

The first two volumes/season are priced a little lower, but the entirety of the Grant Morrison/Liam Sharp Green Lantern run is now on sale.  Morrison explores a lot of tropes in what starts out as exploring the “space cop” aspect of GL. Sharp varies the art with the themes for a different experience than you typically get with a mainline DC character, too.  This is essentially one extended story told across two “seasons.”

Season One
Season Two (Note: the 80th Anniversary book is NOT part of the story, despite how it’s displayed.)

Superman: Man of Tomorrow   Jimmy Olsen   Green Lantern

Wolf Riders

The Dark Horse Elfquest Sale runs through Monday, 6/13.

This is the classic and pioneering fantasy tale of Elves fleeing when the humans burn down their forest by Wendy and Richard Pini.

The saga, except for the current installment, is collected in very thick omnibus volumes as The Complete Elfquest and 500-600 pages for $5.99 is a good deal!

The current installment is Elfquest: Stargazer’s Huntof which the second book isn’t out, but the first is on sale.

Elfquest   Elfquest: Stargazer's Hunt

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Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Captain America, Star Wars, Ultimate Spider-Man (and Miles Morales), Suicide Squad and Road to Perdition

This week’s Comixology (at Amazon) sales include the majority of Captain America comics, a whole bunch of Star Wars material, Ultimate Spider-Man (and Miles Morales) and the rest of DC’s Memorial Day Sale.

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

Super Soldier Serum

The Marvel Captain America Legacy Sale runs through Monday, 5/30.

There’s a lot of material to cover here, so we’ll go with the usual format and start by breaking out the major series involved

  • Captain America Comics ’40-’50 – The original Golden Age series
  • Tales of Suspense ’59-’68 – Cap’s Silver Age solo stories were in a title shared with Iron Man
  • Captain America ’68-’96 – The original Silver/Bronze Age solo series.
  • Captain America ’98-’02 – The second Mark Waid / Ron Garney run with some Andy Kubert and Lee Weeks art, too. Smaller volumes here, plus the underrated Dan Jurgens run that followed.
  • Captain America ’02-’04 – The Marvel Knights era
  • Captain America ’04-’11 – The main Winter Soldier/Death of Captain America Ed Brubaker run with Steve Epting, Michael Lark, Mike Perkins and Butch Guice in the artistic rotation. Note: you can pick up chunks of it cheaper in these omnibuses
  • Captain America: Reborn – The actual end to the “Death of Captain America” sequence by Ed Brubaker, Bryan Hitch and Butch Guice
  • Captain America ’11-’12 – Brubaker sticks around for a relaunch, post-Death/Reborn
  • Captain America ’12-’14 is the Rick Remender run with John Romita, Jr, Carlos Pacheco, Pascal Alixe and Nic Klein in the artistic rotation.
  • All-New Captain America ’14-’15 – Sam Wilson picks up the shield by Rick Remender and Stuart Immonen
  • Captain America: Sam Wilson ’15-17 – Nick Spencer with Daniel Acuna as the primary artist. The seeds of “Secret Empire,” which was a long game, start here.Note: There’s a Complete Collection omnibus set of the Sam Wilson material that’s a bit cheaper.
  • Captain America: Steve Rogers ’16-’17 – The main runup to Secret Empire by Nick Spencer with Jesus Saiz and Javier Pina as the primary artists.
  • While not on sale, you can’t talk about the Spencer era without mentioning Secret Empire, the controversial “Hydra Cap” arc that Spencer’s entire run builds towards.
  • Captain America ’17-’18 – AKA Captain America by Mark Waid and Chris Samnee (and Leonardo Romero)
  • Captain America18-’21 – The Ta-Nehisi Coates run with art by Leinil Francis Yu, Adam Kubert, Jason Masters and Leonard Kirk

So… do you think Captain America gets relaunched enough? Don’t worry, they’ll relaunch him again.

First the usual general advice: The Masterworks and Epic Collections tend to be the best buys, but keep an eye on price points. Some of the newer Epic Collections can be $8.99+ and make the Masterworks more appealing.

Some recommendations? Absolutely.  Just the way the collections are currently rolled out, the highlights seem to flow more with the Masterworks than the Epics.

For Silver/Bronze Age adventures,  Captain America Masterworks V. 3 gets you some late Stan Lee/Jack Kirby and the influential Jim Steranko Sequence.  You then jump forward to Masterworks V. 7 for the beginning of the Steve Englehart/Sal Buscema era and stay on through Masterworks V.10, which is the return of Jack Kirby and his entirely too timely “Madbomb” arc. (There’s more Kirby in V.11, but Madbomb is a hard act to follow.) There’s also much to recommend with the Mark Gruenwald era which probably peaked with “The Captain” Epic Collection. In general, earlier Gruenwald is better and the art takes a nose dive before his run is over.

Aside from that, your best of the best is anything written by Mark Waid or Ed Brubaker, and know that Brubaker, first run is basically one long and epic story – and be sure to get Reborn or you’re missing a piece.

Captain America   Captain America   Captain America

Nothing But Star Wars

The Marvel Star Wars Legacy Sale runs through Monday, 5/30.

While not the rock bottom prices of the May the 4th sale, this one does have a wider selection of Star Wars material that isn’t limited to the current Marvel titles.  Some titles that may be of interest:

You get a little more material per volume (and they finished the run) getting the original Marvel Star Wars series with the “A Long Time Ago…” omnibus editions.

lot of the Epic Collections of the older material have been lumped together under an Epic Collections page, to make finding individual series hard, so refer to that link for the bigger picture, but within that link:

  • Dark Empire – Tom Veitch and Cam Kennedy played a BIG part in bringing the Star Wars franchise back to life with their Dark Horse mini-series and it’s sequel. This is the most economical package for the Dark Empire-related titles. It’s a classic.
  • Agent of Empire – John Ostander, Stéphane Roux and Davidé Fabbri did a couple mini-series that effectively answered the question, “what if James Bond worked for The Empire?” Those are the backbone of this collection.
  • Legacy – Far in the Star Wars timeline’s future, the Sith have returned and are stalking the last Skywalker heir. There are three volumes of this fun John Ostrander / Jan Duursema series that might not be cannon anymore, but is better than a lot of things that came after it.

Original Marvel Star Wars   Dark Empire   Agent of Empire

This Time, the Other Peter Isn’t a Clone

The Marvel Ultimate Spider-Man Sale runs through Monday, 5/30.

A Bendis Sale! And Ultimate Spidey might just the the crowning achievement for Brian Bendis in the world of superheroes. (We might like his Daredevil a little more, but Ultimate Spidey and then Miles have had so much impact.)

So let’s break this one down into parts.

  1. The original Ultimate Spider-Man with Mark Bagley, reimaging Peter for a new era. You get a better deal with these larger collections and ignore the omnibus that starts the list.
  2. Ultimate Comics Spider-Man, the relaunch with David Lafuente.
  3. Ultimate Comics Spider-Man, the Miles Morales version with art by Sara Pichelli, Chris Samnee, David Marquez and Pepe Larraz

Ultimate Spider-Man   Ultimate Comics Spider-Man   Ultimate Comics Spider-Man (Miles Morales)

The Other Memorial Day Sale

The DC Memorial Day eBook Sale Part 2 runs through Monday, 5/30.

It would appear that last week’s confusion was caused by Amazon prematurely post this week’s sale last week, then removing it in the US while leaving it online in the UK.  Stranger and stranger.

But this is essentially the back half of the alphabet on sale and worth a browse. Some highlights?

The rock bottom price pick: Dead Boy Detectives for $3.99. Something of a departure for Vertigo as we generally remember it (although there was a similar “Death” volume and My Faith In Frankie wasn’t necessarily far removed), the multi-award-winning Jill Thompson takes the ghost detective children from Sandman and plops them into a manga-style detective comedy.  Yes, Jill is versatile.

From the “Yes, DC published that” division, do you remember Road to Perdition? Yes, before Tom Hanks was a mob enforcer, this was a comic. As usual, these are cataloged strangely.  Listed under “Return to Perdition,” are the original Road to Perdition  and Road to Perdition: On the Road. Both are written by Max Allan Collins with Richard Piers Rayner illustrating Road to Perdition and Jose Luis Garcia Lopez, Steve Leiber and Joseph Rubenstein sharing duties for On the Road. The actual Return to Perdition, a sequel set in the 1970s by Collins and his Ms. Tree partner, Terry Beatty is list separately (for $3.99). Go figure…

For the uninitiated, Road to Perdition can be likened to Lone Wolf and Cub setting against the backdrop of the Capone era Chicago mob. A mob enforcer goes on the lam with his son after the boss of the local mob outpost orders a hit on his family.  Excellent material that’s largely ignored these days.

And if you’d like some supervillains in your life, the John Ostrander/Luke McDonnell Suicide Squad run is available for $5.99 a pop. This is the run that spun off the films.

Dead Boy Detectives   Road to Perdition   Suicide Squad

 

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Still On Sale

Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Iron Man, Fantastic Four, Far Sector, Gotham Central, Pulp, Stray Dogs

This week in Comixology (at Amazon) Sales, Marvel has most of their Iron Man titles on sale, plus alternate Fantastic Four lineups. DC has a memorial day say… though more of that seems to be on sale in the UK and Image has OGNs on sale with collected editions sneaking into the listing.

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

Does Whatever An Iron Can…

The Marvel Iron Man Legacy Sale runs through Monday, 5/23.

This would be one of those sales where most of the hero’s run is on sale, so we’re going to follow our usual protocol and start out by breaking out the primary titles and volumes first (because Amazon can’t be bothered to present things in a civilized manor).

  • Tales of Suspense – Iron Man debuted here in what was a split book with Captain America for most of the run.
  • Iron Man ’68-’96 – The original solo run in the era before constant relaunch gimmicks

OK, sit tight. The ’98 -’04 run is collected in VERY odd ways and poorly cataloged for browsing.  The truly excellent Kurt Busiek run lasts from 1-25. We can’t find 20-25 reprinted?!?  You can catch 1-19 and the Mike Grell run (50-59) in cheap omnibus form here.  You can catch Joe Quesada’s scripting run (26-32) and the Avengers: Disassembled tie-in late in this run in single volumes here. (But get the omnibus for Busiek, not the singles.)

  • Iron Man ’04-07 – Best known for launching with the “Extremis” storyline
  • Invincible Iron Man ’08-’12 – The excellent Matt Fraction / Salvador Larroca run. Save some money with the omnibus collecting the first 3 volumes.
  • Iron Man ’12-’14 – The Kieron Gillen run with Greg Land as initial artist
  • Superior Iron Man ’14-’15 – The Tom Taylor / Yildiray Cinar run.
  • Invincible Iron Man ’15-’16 – Brian Bendis and David Marquez/Mike Deodato, Jr. start out with Tony Stark in the armor
  • International Iron Man ’16 – Brian Bendis and Alex Maleev (And yes, we’re in the thick of the relaunches now)
  • Infamous Iron Man  ’16-’17 – Brian Bendis and Alex Maleev have Doctor Doom step in as Iron Man
  • Invincible Iron Man ’16-’18 – Brian Bendis and Stefano Caselli with Riri Williams/Ironheart filling Tony Stark’s shoes (yes, parallel substitute Iron Man runs)
  • Tony Stark: Iron Man ’18-’19 – The Dan Slott era with Valerio Schiti as the principle artist in the rotation.
  • Iron Man ’20 – ? – The current Christopher Cantwell / Cafu run. (Also available as $0.99 single issues but the collected editions are the better buy by a lot.)

Before we get into what’s good, a tweak on the general advice: The Masterworks and Epic Collections are both good deals and *in general* we like the Epic Collections as a slightly better buy. In this case, keep an eye on the Epic pricing. The $6.99 Epics are much better buys than the $8.99/$9.99 Epics.  We can all agree inflation sucks?

So what’s good?  We haven’t read ALL the Iron Man out there, but we’ve read a lot of them.

In our opinion Iron Man starts hitting it’s stride when Archie Goodwin arrives toward the end of the Tales of Suspense run and then is pure gold through issue 28 of the ’68 Iron Man series. Artists for this run include Gene Colan and George Tuska.

The next “all-star” run is #116-157 of the original Iron Man, that’s the David Michelinie / John Romita, Jr. / Bob Layton run that’s most famous for the “Demon in a Bottle” alcoholism arc, but there’s more to the run than just that arc.  The Denny O’Neil / Luke McDonnell run that follows is solid, but Michelinie & Layton return for #215-250 with a few artists, including Mark Bright and Jackson Guice… with Layton even switching to penciller, instead of his usual inking post, for parts of it.  This second run is most famous for “Armor Wars” (originally known as Stark Wars).

When Heroes Return hits, Kurt Busiek and Sean Chen are pop in for the excellent 1998 run, of which only 1-19 are currently reprinted.

The ’08 – ’12 run by Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca is particularly good. You know how modern Marvel titles can get sidetracked by Events. Fraction and Larroca lean into it and produce a lengthy and self-contained arc with Tony Stark on the run and attempting to overwrite his brain to keep everyone’s secrets out of the hands of Norman Osborn. Yes, an honest to goodness great Event tie-in arc. It’s a rare thing.

We’re not quite ready to put the current Christopher Cantwell/Cafu run up in the above pantheon quite yet, but we think it’s the best Iron Man in a while and it’s one of the more ambitious arcs with Tony chasing Korvac into outer space and meditating on the nature of godhood and good intentions.

Iron Man: The Man Who Killed Tony Stark  Iron Man: Heroes Reborn  Iron Man: Big Iron

The More Things Change

The Marvel New Fantastic Four Sale runs through Monday, 5/23.

This would be a very small sale built around alternate FF lineups.

For instance, the “New Fantastic Four” Epic Collection is built around a Walter Simonson/Arthur Adams sequence where Spider-Man, Wolverine, Hulk and Ghost Rider become the new Fantastic Four. We also like the Simonson arc featuring the FF’s showdown with the Time Variance Authority in the first half of this volume.

Or another “New Fantastic Four,” this time by Dwayne McDuffie and Paul Pelletier, where Black Panther and Storm tag in.

Fantastic Four   Fantastic Four

In Memoriam

The DC Memorial Day eBook Sale runs through Monday, 5/23.

There are a LOT of books to browse here and more is on sale that not on sale, so if you’ve got something from DC on your list, pop over and see if it’s on sale.

And there’s a catch. In a uniquely “Amazon trying to be Comixology” twist, there was originally a Part 2 to this sale. We are unable to locate the link for that from Thursday on.  We can find the link for the UK version of part 2… but it’s not clear to us that the books on sale in the UK part 2 are all on sale in the US. No idea what happened. Maybe the part 2 link will re-appear and maybe it won’t. It sure does seem like there’s a lot of drama around DC sales, doesn’t it?

Some recommendations?

Far Sector is one of DC’s best titles of the last couple years. N.K. Jemisin, who owns too many SF/F prose awards to reasonably keep track of, makes her comics debut with Jamal Igle excelling on the art duties. The setup – a rookie Green Lantern with an experimental new type of power ring is sent to world on the edge of the known universe where emotion was done away with generations ago in the aftermath of a horrific war. The first murder in 500 years has occurred and political alliance are about to upside down.  On top of everything else, superior world building. Highly recommended if you haven’t had a look yet.

Are you familiar with Gotham CentralTales of the Gotham City Police Department trying to handle the sort of threats that Gotham produces. With a pre-Question Rene Montoya. Near-universally praised and an enviable creative rotation of Greg Rucka, Ed Brubaker, Michael Lark, Stefano Gaudiano and Kano.  Excellent stuff from the fringes of the Batman Family for $5.99@.

And for something completely different, and perhaps not even in the sale (since we can’t see the back half of the alphabetical listings) there’s Kamandi, Jack Kirby’s post-apocalyptic spin on Planet of the Apes with the last boy on Earth having adventures on a world where the animals are intelligent, bipedal and not always friendly. We’ve been seeing Kamandi’s influences on a lot of comics in the last year (Geiger quickly comes to mind). The bulk of the Kirby run is available for $0.99 each. Yes, there are a few issues missing, but this is an extremely fun run… and was probably Kirby’s biggest newsstand success at DC.  And yes, DC really ought to get this back in print as a collected edition!

Far Sector   Gotham Central   Kamandi

OGN

The Image Original Graphic Novel Sale runs through Thursday, 6/2.

Now, you might flip through this sale and say “a lot of these are really collected editions.” And you’d be right. So let’s recommend a few things from Image’s flagship OGN creative team, Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips.

We’re quite fond of Recklessan OGN series by Brubaker and Phillips that calls back to the pulp paperback adventure novels of the 70s and early 80s. An off the books private detective/fixer who had a… falling out with his original government employers operates in 80s Los Angeles… a noir flavor of LA, to be precise.  Evil voices from the past, satanic sex cults, and real estate scams.  The first two are on sale and it’s a quality series.

And then there’s Pulp. Let’s face it, Brubaker and Phillips have a fair sized body of work and it’s quality work… but Pulp strikes us as one of the high points of their collaboration.  One part crime novel, one part meditation on aging, it’s got a little more gravitas than most. An aging pulp writer contemplates the youth he’s been trying to hide while stumbling into a combustible stew involving an obnoxious editor, a bank heist, nazi spies and a lot of gunplay. Highly recommended and this one has a more friendly $6.99 price point.

Now if you want a collected edition, not an OGN, you might be interested in Stray Dogs. We haven’t had a chance to read this yet, but it’s on our list and has stirred up quite a buzz. The tagline is “Lady and the Tramp meets Silence of the Lambs,” which is to say, cute cartoon dogs in a psychological thriller by Tony Fleecs and Trish Forstner. It’s also on the Eisner Awards nomination list that recently dropped, so it’s definitely getting some notice.

  Pulp   Stray Gods

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Still On Sale

Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: DC Classics w/ New Teen Titans, What If?, Cullen Bunn and Tyler Crook, Peanuts

This week’s Comixology (at Amazon) sales include DC “Classics,” which includes the Marv Wolfman/George Perez New Teen Titans run, so we’ll have to agree with the sale’s title. Marvel offers up What If? Fantagraphics discounts Peanuts and Dark Horse celebrates Cullen Bunn & Tyler Crook.  We would also remind you that there’s a very cheap Star Wars sale and a Doctor Strange sale that aren’t quite finished yet.

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

A “Classical” Education

The DC Classics Sale runs through Monday, 5/16

This one is a DEEP dive into the DC backlist. And since the sale prices seem to have normalized, we’re happy to be able to point you to a few title that now have each volume on sale, which wasn’t happening in the last couple months.

Point in case: New Teen Titans by Marv Wolfman and George Perez now has the first 10 volumes (coincidentally, the Perez years) for $4.99 each. Previously several volumes would be at those bizarre prices that appeared to be in error. Well, no more of that.  New Teen Titans was effectively DC’s answer to X-Men in the early 80s (along with the Levitz/Giffen-era LSH, whose reprinting is more convoluted). It’s supposed to be a “classics” sale and this one is more classic than most.

Fast forward a few years and you get the “Man of Steel” era of Superman. Some people call it the John Byrne era, but this time frame also brings Marv Wolfman and Jerry Ordway into the fold. $4.99 – $5.99 per volume is also good pricing.

New Teen Titans   Superman: The Man of Steel

In general, the “Silver Age” collections tend to be a slightly larger page count and good bang for your buck.  However, you also might find yourself thinking that DC’s collected editions can be a little spotty and, gosh darn it, sometimes you’d just like to get some $0.99 single issues to fill in those series.  You’re in luck, there are a LOT of $0.99 single issues here, although it’s a royal pain to browse in Amazon sub-par user interface.  Here’s a cheat sheet for some of the single issues on sale:

If Not, Why Not?

The Marvel What If Sale runs through Monday, 5/16.

The interesting thing about What If is how often the modern age of Marvel has gone back to pilfer from it.  What If is where Jane Foster first took up the hammer of Thor. The first place Conan stalked the streets of the present. The first time the Hulk became a barbarian. Apparently, “there’s gold in them there hills!”  The larger collections are slightly more bang for your buck, BTW.

What If

The Fantagraphics Peanuts Sale runs through Monday, 5/16.

Yes, the classic Charles Schultz comic strip with Charlie Brown and Snoopy. Fantagraphics is reprinting it from the beginning. Strangely, there’s no series link on Amazon for this.

The Complete Peanuts

Tag Team?

The Dark Horse Bunn & Crook Sale runs through Monday, 5/23.

That would be Cullen Bunn & Tyler Crook, who’ve done quite a bit at Dark Horse over the years.  Their best known collaboration is probably Harrow County  (the omnibus editions are BY FAR the best buy).

If you’d like something a bit more recent, Parasomnia by Bunn and Andrea Mutti was a February release.  The Unbelievable Teens (part of the Black Hammer universe) by Jeff Lemire and Crook was released on 4/5… and this is as quickly as we’ve seen a collection go on sale!

Harrow County Omnibus 1   Parasomnia   Unbelievable Teens

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Still On Sale

Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Doctor Strange, Justice League, Scarlet Witch, Constantine and Jeff Lemire

In this week’s Comixology (at Amazon) sales – Doctor Strange has pretty much his entire run on sale and the Scarlet Witch joins him with a sister sale of sorts. DC celebrates the death of the Justice League with (correct) discounts and Image celebrates the work of Jeff Lemire.

(Disclosure: If you buy something we link to on our site, we may earn commissions)

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

Bibbidy Bobbidy Boo

The  Marvel Doctor Strange Sale runs through Sunday, 5/16.

And it’s most of the Doctor Strange material that’s been collected in book form. You’d almost think there was a movie out or something.

So first, as is our custom, we’ll walk you through the various series over the years… this is a little more complicated because the early Epic/Masterwork volumes aren’t on the same page. (We’ll let you you pick out the mini’s yourself, since those aren’t as convoluted.)

  • Strange Tales – This is a cluttered series page, but its the original Lee/Ditko run, so let’s break it down to Masterworks 1 and Masterworks 2 or Epic Edition 1
  • Doctor Strange ’68-’69 – the Masterworks listings are here and include the early Marvel Premiere run. The ’68 run is perhaps most notable for some amazing Gene Colan art, but the scripts don’t always live up to the art.
  • Doctor Strange ’74-’87 – The Masterworks here catch the end of the Marvel Premiere run and the Epics pick up with the back half of ’68 run. (Yes, it’s a confusing way to look at things.)
  • Strange Tales ’87-’88 – The Peter B. Gillis / Chris Warner era was back in Strange Tales in between the two “regular” Doctor Strange titles.
  • Doctor Strange ’88-’96 – Probably best known for the Roy & Dann Thomas run with Butch Guice and Geoff Isherwood as notable artists.
  • Doctor Strange ’15-’18 – Initially Jason Aaron/Chris Bachalo with Donny Cates tagging in towards the end. (The omnibuses here are the better buy)
  • Doctor Strange ’18-’19 – The Mark Waid / Jesus Saiz / Barry Kitson era with Strange in space.
  • Doctor Strange, Surgeon Supreme (’19) – the very much under-rated and too short Mark Waid / Kev Walker run. Walker knocks it out of the park here.
  • Death of Doctor Strange – Jed MacKay and Lee Garbett kill off Stephen Strange. For real. (OK, so far for real.) A clever series that delivers its titular promise in unexpected ways.
  • Strange (’22-?) – get the first couple issues of the new Sorcerer Supreme for $0.99

What’s good?  This is where we get into Masterworks vs. Epics… because the Masterworks are a LOT more complete right now, particularly through the 70s.  The original Lee/Ditko run is great and you can get that in the first Epic Collection. Things pick up again when Englehart and Brunner show up towards the end of the Marvel Premiere run and the whole ’74-’87 run is solid, though we have a particular soft spot for the Roger Stern / Marshall Rogers / Paul Smith material towards the end.  Yes, Doctor Strange had A list creators most of the time.  That’s your core.

Something under the radar?  The (as you’d expect with these creators) excellent Doctor Strange: The Oath by Brian K, Vaughan and Marcos Martin. The final Waid/Walker run is also a lot more under the radar than it should be.

Doctor Strange - The Oath    Doctor Strange in Strange Tales   Doctor Strange

Mutant Sorcery

The Marvel Scarlet Witch Sale runs through Sunday, 5/9.

The value buy here is Vision & The Scarlet Witch: The Saga of Wanda and VisionIt’s a sort of faux-Epic Edition, clocking in at 467 pages and including the wedding of Wanda and Vision from Giant-Size Avengers #4, the ’82 Bill Mantlo/Rick Leonardi mini-series and the ’85 Steve Englehart/Richard Howell 12-parter.

There’s a lot of West Coast Avengers in this sale, largely for Wanda’s heel-turn in the John Byrne Vision Quest/Darker than Scarlet era — the Epic Collections are the better buys here.

House of M by Brian Bendis and Olivier Coipel might be a little over-hyped at this point, but it’s the tent-pole “Wanda rewrites reality” story that’s central to the TV adaptation.

Vision and the Scarlet Witch   Avengers West Coast   House of M

Dead Again

The DC Justice League R.I.P. Sale runs through Monday, 5/16.

We’re actually not seeing the goofy $9.32 type prices on this sale that we’ve been seeing on other DC sales for the last couple months. Could the bug be fixed? That’s probably too much to ask for, but we’ll see what happens next week. In the meantime, some of these prices are a little higher than we’d like to see on a sale (part of that being the absurd practice of putting a hard cover list price on eBooks), but they seem like the intended sale prices for a change.

Anyway, this is DC’s celebrating killing off the Justice League as a lead-in to their next crossover event.  Let’s break down some of the major series here:

  • Justice League of America ’60-’87 – The original
  • Justice League of America ’87-’96 – This is, at least initially, the Justice League InternationalJustice League Europe run with Keith Giffen/J.M. DeMatteis / Kevin Maguire.  BWA HA HA HA HA HA
  • JLA ’97-’06 – Best known for launching with the the Grant Morrison / Howard Porter run
  • Justice League of America ’06-11 – Initially launched as Brad Meltzer / Ed Benes and eventually got Dwayne McDuffie (who was undercut by editorial)
  • Justice League ’11-’16 – The New 52 Geoff Johns era, initially with Jim Lee art.
  • Justice League ’16 – ’18 – The Bryan Hitch (as writer) era with rotating artists
  • Justice League ’18-22 – It’s probably easiest to call the most recent incarnation the Scott Snyder era, as he launched the volume. So many rotating artists here.

That the timeline of the main series.  There are plenty of mini’s and spin-off series in there for your browsing.  If you’d like some $0.99 single issues (you are heard), if you sort by lowest price, you’ll see them quickly. Yes, even JLA: Classified.

Best bets?  For pure bang for your buck, head to the original Justice League of America run and pick up the first two “Silver Age” collections. ~300 pages for $4.99.

The Morrison/Porter JLA  run isn’t nearly the price per page value, but there’s a reason everyone comes back to it. The Waid/Hitch bits aren’t bad, either.

Under the radar?  The Christopher Priest / Pete Woods arc from ~3 years back. It’s just good comics without silly crossovers.

Justice League of America   JLA   Justice League by Priest

Unadvertised Sale

We have an overlooked gem for you this week.  John Constantine, Hellblazer by Si Spurrier, Aaron Campbell and Matias Bergara. It’s not clear to us if these are random discounts or it’s just the wacky “Epic” sale discounts getting fixed on this one.  Either way, this is one of the best comics we’ve read in the last year.

This is a really an extended 12-issues arc, so you’re going to want both volumes. It starts at the end of the world and follows Constantine through a series of gangland skirmishes as he tries to perceive who or what is the strangely familiar entity pulling the strings. Sometimes straight horror, sometimes comedy (Constantine vs. the sensitive new age magician is priceless), this is quite possibly the best work of all the creators involved.

John Constantine, Hellblazer

Jeff Who?

The Image Jeff Lemire Sale runs through Monday, 5/16.

Yes, we’ll go ahead and say it: we think Jeff Lemire is at his best when he’s working on his own projects and Image has a few of them on sale. Of possible note and interest:

Gideon Falls with Andrea Sorrentino – A sort of horror/science fiction mashup that starts out rural and claustrophobic and then unfurls across a fairly epic canvas and multiple landscapes… while still managing to have that feeling of claustrophobic terror being ready to swallow up the heroes at any moment.  Rock solid dark adventure.

Descender with Dustin Nguyen is a science fiction epic about a little boy who happens to be a robot who’s looking for his family and falls into the middle of a robot rebellion. A beautiful book.

Ascender is the sequel as Lemire and Nguyen pivot for a space adventure with magic and vampires… and at least one killer robot. 😉

Gideon Falls   Descender   Ascender

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Still On Sale

Comixology (at Amazon) Sales: Hulk, Nightwing, Robin, Groot and Usagi Yojimbo

This week in Comixology (at Amazon) sales, the Hulk is on sale. As in, most of the Hulk comics. Groot gets a small sale, Nightwing and Robin get a larger sale and Usagi Yojimbo goes on sale ahead of next week’s Netflix debut.

(Disclosure: If you buy something we link to on our site, we may earn commissions)

Where did the New Releases and Sale pages go?

In case you’re having troubles with the new UIX (a LOT of people have been):

Hulk Smash Prices

The Incredible Hulk Legacy Sale runs through Thursday, 4/28.

Oh, yes. There is a LOT of Hulk on sale.  Most of it, really.  So we’re going to start out by doing what we do (and what Amazon can’t be bothered to do) and break it down by series.

  • Incredible Hulk (1962 – 1999) The original run and then the long running series that picked up a few years later.
  • Tales to Astonish (1964-68) In between the two Hulk solo runs above, Hulk was splitting Tales to Astonish with Ant-Man/Giant Man and then Namor. A lot of the foundational work was really in this run, with Stan Lee/Steve Ditko responsible for a lot of it.
  • Incredible Hulk (1999-2007) – Best known for the Bruce Jones / Lee Weeks/ Mike Deodato run towards the beginning and the Greg Pak / multi-artist “Planet Hulk” and “World War Hulk” epics at the end… though World War Hulk is at this different link.
  • Hulk (2008-13) This is the Red Hulk run (and the title changes to that after awhile). It starts out with the better known Jeph Loeb/Ed Mc Guiness run and then Jeff Parker takes over with Gabriel Hardman, Dave Eaglesham and Patrick Zircher in the artist rotation.
  • Incredible Hulk by Jason Aaron (2011-12) – Lots of artists rotating through here, Marc Silvestri, Steve Dillon and Carlos Pacheco among them
  • Indestructible Hulk (2012 – 14) – Mark Waid’s the writer with an artist rotation including Leinil Francis Yu, Matteo Scalera and Walt Simonson draws the Thor team-up.
  • Hulk by Waid and Duggan (2014-15) – That would be Mark Waid and Gerry Duggan with Duggan doing the bulk of the run. Mark Bagley is the main artist here.
  • The Totally Awesome Hulk (2015-17) – This would be Amadeus Cho’s turn as Hulk, which mean Greg Pak is you primary writer with an artist rotation including Frank Cho, Alan Davis and Luke Ross
  • Immortal Hulk (2018-21) – Al Ewing’s masterpiece as the Hulk slides over towards horror and find a green door that leads to Hell.

What’s good? We like the value of the Epic Collections in the original series (and Tales to Astonish) for $6.99.  The Masterworks editions for $5.99 aren’t bad either, so pick your period and format.

As for “the best of” Hulk…

We think this Epic Collection of the Tales to Astonish run is a good introduction to the Hulk. A rock solid creator rotation of Lee/Kirby/Ditko/Kane/Everett/Buscema/Severin. The introductions of The Leader and the Abomination (among others). Cold war paranoia and you get to the the original evolution of the Hulk as a character that changes formats and approaches every so often.

Immortal Hulk is a high water mark and well worth your time, though not really what you’d call a traditional Hulk tale.  Peter David’s lengthy run is a classic (and we’re not going to divide it up by artist periods – it’s all good). Greg Pak has gone big like few others.

Something under the radar?  There’s a Paul Jenkins/Ron Garney/John Romita Junior run that preceded the better known Bruce Jones era. It’s collected with some other things, but the two volumes are The Dogs of War and Past Perfect. It goes darker than a lot of the Hulk tales, but we sure liked it.

Hulk Epic Collection   Hulk Dogs of War   Hulk - Past Perfect

I Am… Rocket?

The Marvel Groot sale runs through Thursday, 4/28.

This is a fairly small sale. The real question here is one of direction. You can head for the Dan Abnett/Andy Lanning/Paul Pelletier/Brad Walker Guardians of the Galaxy run or in the Skottie Young direction with Rocket Raccoon and Groot.

Guardians of the Galaxy

Batman Family

The DC Spotlight: Nightwing & Robin Sale runs through Monday, 4/25.

The now standard warning on DC digital sales at Amazon – the pricing gets screwed up on these sales. A lot of prices initially get set at strange amounts like $9.32 and $13.98. Sometimes the prices get adjusted down to something more palatable like $5.99 or $7.99… but not always.  We don’t know if this is a problem on the Amazon side or the DC side, but it’s a problem. If the price ends in $*.99 (like $5.99), that’s probably the real sale price and you can proceed.  If not… the price might drop.  Yeah, it’s goofy in a bad way.  That said, what’s on sale?

The Grant Morrison era Batman & Robin for $5.99 per volume is not a bad deal. It’s a revolving door at artist, but when the revolving door is folks like Frank Quitely and Frazier Irving, one doesn’t mind as much…

Here’s another good deal, clocking in at around 300 pages for $5.99 – Robin: Reborn. This one starts out with the Alan Grant / Norm Breyfogle tales leading up to Tim Drake taking up the cape. Then it collects the first Robin solo mini-series by Chuck Dixon and Tom Lyle.  Tim Drake had a moment in the mid-90s (more volumes of his original solo run are here and here).

For Nightwing, we’re going to point you at Grayson, written by Tim Seeley & Tom King and drawn (mostly) by Mikel Janin. This ambitious series has Dick Grayson going undercover as a spy for a mysterious espionage agency called “Spyral,” which is spying on superheroes.

Batman & Robin   Robin: Reborn   Grayson

Rabbit Rabbit

And let’s not forget the Usagi Yojimbo Sale, running through Monday, 5/2.

Stan Sakai’s samurai rabbit is getting a cartoon adaptation and this is the odd sale with two different publishers under the same umbrella.  Fantagraphics comes first and then the Dark Horse material.

Usagi Yojimbo

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