We love some good teen drama, y'all.
Weekly Pull Highlights: April 6, 2022
Look, comics don't HAVE to be bleak and depressing and drab. They can be colorful and playful and feature young people with powers and drama and OKAY, THERE'S ANOTHER VAMPIRE BOOK. SUE US.
What you may have missed in March!
Honorable Mention Highlights: March 2022
What a cute, cheeky little book. Another tale of a spunky girl with a talking robot friend (I'm honestly surprised that's so common nowadays), but it's set up with a fantastical world and very creative mystery building. I'm excited to see just how deep this story goes.
Broken Eye #1
It's like the Dead Zone meets Trainspotting. A blue color dockworker in Liverpool gets embroiled in the workings of a crime lord. Because, y'know... his eye can see the past and stuff. Characters are a little flat, but it seems like it will be a tasty little neo-noir.
We Live Rise of the Palladiums #1
Done in two different issues, Black and White, this premiere issue of the new volume of We Live is told from two different perspectives. We are sent back into the We Live world with new problems and a completely original vibe. Did you miss We Live? No problem, this story does an excellent job standing on its own with all the weird, colorful post-apocalypse-y goodness we're familiar with.
Beyond the Beyond #1
It's a tale as old as time - a rebellious young girl seeks the exciting world outside her walls, and isn't afraid to break the rules and get in trouble to get what she wants. Okay, except this time she steals a spaceship. I mean, at least she didn't grow legs or whatever, right?
Cities of Magick #1
I want to like this book so bad. It seems like a cool concept: a post-apocalyptic world where tech is replaced by magic. There seems to be setup for a later discovery that perhaps the magick isn't as different from tech as we think. I cool concept, interesting thrust and fun representation of magick? Sign me up. My main issue is just the characters feel SUPER flat and lifeless. The dialogue being a bit bland just throws this off for me, but it still deserves a mention for those sold enough on the concept.
Zombies vs Robots Classic #1
Ten years or so ago, ZVR hit the shelves. It's a wild book that sees two different apocalypses go ahead to ahead across time. Just like... such a fun, wholesome concept. ZVC is now back with reprints of early issues that include new stories and art mixed in. Fun stuff and a classic read.
What you may have missed in February!
Honorable Mention Highlights: February 2022
Speed Republic #1
We've had a handful of race-based books in the past couple years, but none nearly as broody as this one. It's a post-capitalist society, where everything is controlled by corporations and we're all manipulated for their amusement... Bezos, please don't read this one. Cool?
Land of the Living Gods #1
A dead world, roving gangs, cybery, shiny ghosts, and a magical plant. This book is unique, charming and generally lovely. I am excited to see where the story goes and who gets wrapped into the mix. However, post-apocalyptic stories are a dime a dozen these days, so it can be a bit exhausting digging through another. I like this book, but I am very close to the end of my interest in the post-apocalypse.
The Killer: State of Affairs #1
An assassin holds down a 9 to 5 office job as a cover while working on a possible maybe coup plot. This book, while not necessarily groundbreaking or ultra exciting, is a pretty approachable action book told by a character whose perspective we don't often get: a more reserved, almost introverted cold-blooded killer.
What you may have missed in January!
Honorable Mention Highlights: January 2022
Bylines in Blood #1
A mystery circling around an independent news source willing to tell the truth. This book has extreme Jessica Jones vibes and presents a painfully relatable tale in a world too close to home for comfort; people record every moment of their lives, the truth has all but vanished as the elite invent facts to serve their purpose, and journalism as a career has effectively been eradicated. It's gritty, it's dark, I like it.
She Hulk #1
Jennifer Walters has been many things. Successful lawyer, savage monster, weird Blonde and Red Russian hit machine, my green-skinned crush for the last 30 years or so. Many hats worn by this lady with a new one being forced onto her head each time we see her. That pattern stays true in this book, which finds Jennifer humbled and having to start over since her stint as the Gamma blasting Hulk of the most recent Avengers team. She is hunble, grounded, and focused more on altruism than heroism. Could be a cool direction for her.
Batman/Catwoman Special #1This book is a fascinating look at Catwoman and Batman's growing relationship over a span of decades. It injects humanity into these bombastic characters much in the way Marvel's Life Story series do, while perfectly displaying just how complex Selena is as a character. It's also a nice memorial for John Paul Leon who tragically passed in May of 2021. Definitely worth a grab for Bat fans.
Honorable Mention Highlights: November 2021
The Dark Knights of Steel #1
Remember when you were a kid playing make-believe and you'd merge together very different IPs to the point where suddenly Optimus Prime is driving Mario to the next castle? This is kind of like that. Suddenly you're in a fantasy setting, but still watching the same DC characters you'd expect in a big crossover. I think is most surprising is how well it works - well done, team, I definitely care about the princes after all.
A Thing Called Truth #1
Relatable, fun characters embroiled in a tale of misogyny and betrayal. This book is delightfully developed and honestly is a story unlike a lot of what's out there. It's realistic and grounded while building to an exciting thrust.
What if Batman was a pervy jerk, got accidentally killed by a random loser, and then replaced by said random loser at the behest of "Alfred" (who absolutely hates Batman to begin with)? If that premise isn't enough to delight you, then just know that this book is incredibly clever and wonderfully cheeky. Sure, it's another "what if popular super hero but different" story, but it's got some fun twists and turns.
My Date with Monsters #1
What a fascinating concept for a book. Bad science leads to real nightmares, and the only way to avoid the apocalypse is for a very single mom to fall in love and build a stable family. Has it already built in some pretty predictable plot points? Yeah, but that doesn't take away from my investment in the very likeable characters. I'm excited to see how it all plays out.
Provenance of Secrets #1
Another day, another noir - but this time, our gumshoe is investigating a theater cult (that as a former theater kid, seems completely believable). Boldly black and white, with a swiftly unraveling mystery, this one has set up to be a very interesting read.
Good Boy #1
If you had told me I would one day read a comic book adaptation of John Wick where the dog lives and the person dies but it still turns into a bullet blasting blood bath, I would have told you to seek help. And yet, here we are. This book shines mainly for the novelty of the concept, but does have some fun art and tongue-in-cheek moments within to earn a mention.
Turkey Day One Shot
The perfect story for the holidays! It's got it all! Community. Family. History. Alien-possessed murder turkeys. If you like B-level horror movies, this book will be a fun ride for you. In the mix is also a nice bit of cheeky commentary on the problematic nature of the Thanksgiving story and the treatment of indigenous people in modern society. Oh, and also gore. Lots of gore.
Honorable Mention Highlights: October 2021
Soul Plumber #1
Goodness, this is an ugly book. If you are looking for a polite, clean, puritan reflection on the soul, run very, very far away. Soul Plumber is shockingly relatable beneath the layer of filth, and I'm rooting for the lead.
Chicken Devil #1
Oh my goodness, this book I just one big fiasco and I love. Hot chicken magnate gets involved in crimes because the world around him deems it. Why not? This is the least character driven book I've read, but I kind of love just watching this dude on a log flume of misery and guns. Also, they have a restaurant menu in the back and it looks damn tasty.
Marvel Legends: Black Panther #1
Not much more to say aside from this is a cool look at young Tchalla earning his stripes (do panthers have stripes?) and showing his mobility in the face of a unaccepting world. This book handles heavy topics like racism and capitalism in a delicate way but still delivers a solid message. A great book for young readers.
Batman: The Imposter #1
A prequel/sequel to the new Batman movie? Hard to tell really, as it feels fairly originy but also seems to also reference movie things? Weird flex releasing a sequel to a movie that does not yet exist, but hey, that's DC. They flex more than an insecure, pre-workout addled Chad on a busy day at muscle beach. Still, I like the angle that they are taking with this Batman and this left me kinda jazzed for the movie. Not really a super new story, but still a nice level of grit.
What do you do when the veil between two realities is lifting and demons are co-mingling with humans on a regular basis? You create a new police force, obvi. Our main character is pretty predictable, but the world building keeps me intrigued enough to want to read more in issue #2. And that's really all it takes, isn't it?
DC vs Vampires #1
Well, hot damn Tynion, you're aiming for a Cover B fan club name, aren't you? The cheesiest of names gives way into an excellent, thought provoking book that not only makes sense in the given DC universe, but made me gasp unexpectedly at twists. I am definitely looking forward to the next issue of this one.
Pop Star Assassin #1
When I saw the title, this was NOT the book I was expecting to read. An Elvis impersonator, a waitress, and a psychic vagrant escape from a bar - be sure to stop me if you've heard this one. Oh, you haven't? I'm not surprised. This book is bonkers, but has a lot of potential if you like fast-paced, off-the-wall chaos.
Cross to Bear #1
...Are they Templars? Are they Masons? Is it a brand new cult we've never heard of? What is their real mission? What are they protecting... or who? I love a good secret society, and I love even more when our supposed protag is more fallible than forgivable. Who doesn't love some character depth, amiright?
Winchester Mystery House #1
You've heard the legends. You've probably even seen the movie. But there's something so eerie about the Winchester House that I'm glad it's being given a chance in the comic format. The ability to come from different perspectives, show more intimate details of the house's machinations - there's a lot that can be done here, and I'm very excited to see it go down.
So, who wants to get fan club jackets?
Weekly Pull Highlights: November 3, 2021
Get your honorary whistles out, this episode is dedicated to all the many fan clubs we've built on Cover B! There's something for Chip's Ahoy, something for Bunn's Huns, even something for the Spurritos... look, we don't make the rules. These things just happen.
Honorable Mention Highlights: September 2021
What happens when everyone passes out and then immediately wakes up being able to read each other's thoughts? Sounds pretty awful, doesn't it? Well, Straczinsky has taken on exactly this concept. Not a ton happens in issue number one, mostly just covering the finer details of "why" and "how," but with there being nothing more personal than your own inner-most thoughts, I could definitely see this book getting into some nitty gritty of what it means to have personal space.
Dark Ages #1
Oh look, Marvel has some sort of event going on. Been a minute since they've had one of those...
That said, this event is actually kind of neat so far. It's an interesting concept: how would superheroes function in a world of no electricity. It really only works for Marvel too, seeing as how so much of the Marvel heroism is based in science and technology. In a word full of Marvel cash ins, I'm actually pretty stoked for this one.
Search for Hu #1
Kind of like Pearl from Bendis, but set it inside a martial arts movie. There's some clichés, some "why did you never tell me" moments, some special military behind-closed-doors knowledge to be had - not a bad time, but not an exceptionally special one, either. It has potential, though, especially if you love a good "chosen-one" story.
Nine Stones #1
I like the characters of this book. The premise isn't entirely new. The narrative plays out fairly predictably. But the writing of the characters is what really shines. They just feel cute and realistic, and I find myself wanting to see their love blossom. And in general it's nice to have an LGBTQ story that just feels natural and not forced.
I have high hopes for Maw, but dang did the first issue not deliver. I get the message it's trying to say, but it's handling of that message is done with heavy hands. Like, filled with lead hands. That said, I dig the creepy atmosphere built around the self-help group/ cult, and the promise of body horror will always get me hooked.
Man, you know I love a good steampunk story. This one has that distinct "Victorian-era but MACHINES" vibe, which can be done so well in comics. What's cool about this one is that the main focus is on fashion, which just makes so much sense in a steampunk environment. The characters are well developed, the story is very familiar and engaging (I see you, Beauty and the Beast) and the twist is just twisty-enough. I'm only sad it's a one-shot, because this title sucked me in for sure.
10 Years to Death (One Shot)
This is another of those big, beautiful one-shot titles from Aftershock that we've been talking about a lot. This one is a horror title, but less gruesome than some of the others, and reads a little more like a supernatural thriller. The tale is told from the perspective of a now-grown man, retelling an experience he had as a kid with his uncle. It's well paced, spooky, and feels just grounded in reality enough to keep you sucked in the whole way through. Definitely worth picking up.
Impossible Jones #1
She was a criminal, in it for herself and the score. Now, she finds herself with powers she didn't earn, and a nagging feeling of responsibility to be on the right side of the law. Sounds impossible? Nah, just Impossible Jones. Cute, colorful, creative use of some superhero tropes - I think this is going to be a super fun titles to follow moving forward.
I'm a sucker for a good "group of ragtag, brash yahoos out in space on some sort of dangerous mission for a corporation and/or to save the earth in a mundane way" kinda scifi story. If you feel the same, are a fan of the alien franchise, or just looking for some interesting sci-fi that is more of the "this spaceship runs on diesel" type, then this is a good choice. Unborn doesn't try too hard to break the mold, but instead chooses to tell a story about interpersonal relationships and coping with the past against a backdrop of clunky space mechanisms and regenerative alien bugs.
Turbo Kid: Apple's Lost Adventure #1
This is apparently a prequel to a movie. If the movie is anywhere as balls-out bonkers as this book, I need to watch it. Turbo Kid appears to be one part Mega Man, one part Tank Girl, and if I need to say more than that then you just don't understand joy.
Human Remains #1
So, the whole "emotions are bad" thing has been done before, but usually under the umbrella of government control. Here we have some sort of mysterious entities that teleport in and obliterate anyone feeling to strongly a certain way. Cool premise that I can't help but feel like is based on something. The entity attacks people playing outside, people at weddings, people congregating at church, people gathering for concerts and parties, people blowing off steam at a bar. Where we come in, everyone is pretty much forced inside and all the revelry of the social world is gone. Where have I seen that before?
I love a good superhero book with scruples. Frontiersman was not what I expected. After Image's recent tangles with the superhero being a bit lame (looking at you, Mr. Radiant Black), I expected this to be another run of the mill super story. What I got instead was a very natural feeling character in a slowly built world struggling with concepts like relevancy, climate change and the nature of social media martyrdom. It was a moderately paced, chill kinda read with some nice world building. I'm rooting for you, Frontiersman.
I mean, they did say they were a bad idea, right?
Weekly Pull Highlights: September 1, 2021
Despite the ongoing battle Chris is fighting with Bad Idea comics & their vast array of gimmicks, we've got not one, but TWO books from them to cover this week, plus an excellent modern spy tale based on a true story.
It's almost like we never left at all!
Weekly Pull Highlights: August 18, 2021
Did you miss us? We're finally back from summer break with three awesome indie books that bring the retro-chic, the wealthy elite, and the Victorian bleak. It's good to be back, baby!
Cover B Podcast
Chris & Tee host this weekly comic-focused show, providing insight on new comics, entertainment news and more.