good this week

east of west #18 : as good as it gets in monthly comics right now.

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ant-man #3 : nick spencer hits all the right notes in this family-oriented, funny superhero romp. fans of the taskmaster, delight.

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star wars #3 : jason aaron and john cassaday are making star wars fans everywhere very, very happy.

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the surface #1 : to quote from ales kot’s own words here, i have no idea whether this book is going to actually work, but the spirit that he and artist langdon foss brought to this opening issue make it worth it to find out.

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howard the duck #1 : SEX CRIMINALS artist chip zdarsky turns out to be the perfect guy to bring the irascible duck into the 21st century. teamed with joe quinones on art, this is a book that any fan of the recent HAWKEYE, SHE-HULK, or SILVER SURFER series needs to check out.

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silver surfer #10 : wonderful wrap-up to this all-new galactus trilogy from michael & aura allred and dan slott.

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mouse guard: legends of the guard vol 3 #1 : devid petersen’s anthology featuring various creators playing in his mouse guard world is always a delight, and with stories from creators like mark buckingham and skottie young, this new series is off to a fine start.

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ragnarok #4 : walt simonson’s grim, energetic return to the ground he built his own legend on is heating up.

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tuki save the humans #3 : the same can be said for jeff smith’s new series, as this 3rd issue is the strongest one yet.

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spider-gwen #2 : spider-ham! the vulture! that costume! fun stuff.

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–chris

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good this week

darth vader #1 : marvel is 2 for 2 so far with their STAR WARS roll-out. this is a vader who is suffering the backlash of the death star’s destruction and feeling the first glimmers of awareness that a certain farm boy named luke might be more than he seems.

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southern bastards #7 : blood, guts, and heart. jason’s aaron and latour have quickly established this series as one of those books you gotta read as soon as you get your hands on it.

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the empty #1 : fantasy books are a tough road to hoe, but jimmie robinson won me over here with pleasing layouts and color work. i can’t think of another book right now that looks like this, and that’s a good thing.

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transformers vs gi joe #5 : now, i’m friends with the mastermind behind this book, tom scioli, and gi joe was the thing i loved most from those golden years of boyhood say 8-12. that said, this is still the most improbably good book since brandon graham relaunched PROPHET. it’s obvious on every page that tom is all in, and there’s a joyous, anything-goes quality that only the best comics have.

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fables complete covers by james jean : you need me to tell you why you need this? well, it is the first time all of james’ storied FABLES covers are in one place.

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ps. this is actually the cover to the original, incomplete volume of jj’s covers. i couldn’t find the new cover online for the life of me.

–chris

 

The Locust Moon Top 40: April 2014

40. ALL NEW X-MEN #25

An all-star line-up of creators beautifies this anniversary issue of Brian Bendis’ goofily fun stab at adding to the X-mythos.

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39. Compendium of Comic Maps

Every comic (and every book) should start with a map. Delving into this wealth of literary cartography, it’s easy to imagine that they do.

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38. DARKSEID MINUS NEW GODS

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Remember Garfield Minus Garfield? Imagine that, juiced with the Anti-Life Equation.

37. SEX CRIMINALS

Matt Fraction & Chip Zdarsky bring an oddball eroticism to this supernatural sex-caper comedy, a generally gleeful creativity that springs from their ultimate turn-on: the expressive freedom of creator-owned comics.

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36. MoCCAFest 2014

Another MoCCAFest, another inspiring celebration of comics & craftsmanship, this one presided over by a Staypuft-Marshmallow-Man-Scale Charlie Brown balloon, and featuring well-deserved awards for Locust Moon contributors and our pals Alexandra Beguez & Dave Plunkert.

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good this week

saga volume #3 : hearts rejoice as the next collection of this compulsively readable series is on the shelf.

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adventure time #26 : kicking off a 4-part arc drawn by the magnificent jim rugg.

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sex criminals #5 : as purvis mack says, ‘matt fraction is coming along.’

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prophet #43 : a jam issue packed with killer visuals.

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zero #6 : kicking off a new storyline for this engaging, smart spy story.

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noah : a good-looking hardcover based on the upcoming darren aronofsky movie. having niko henrichon on art was a smart call.

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daredevil #1 : whether this relaunch was unnecessary or not it’s just good to have mark waid and chris samnee back in action and taking the man without fear to the west coast.

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thor #20 : esad ribic is a fantastic modern day thor artist. any issue he draws is cause for celebration.

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the white suits #2 : toby cypress continues to wow the heck out us with the best art any crime book has had in a long time.

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nemo the roses of berlin : alan moore and kevin o’neill roll out the latest chapter of THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN.

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sovereign #1 : paul maybury’s art gives this debut fantasy series a gravity that a lot of these kinds of books lack. off to a good start!

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–chris stevens

good this week

deadly class #2 : a strong issue that cements my hopes for this series. we get into the whole school aspect of things, and it’s a lot of fun meeting the various cliques. wes craig kills every aspect of the art–design, character, layout.

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hawkeye #15 : it feels like things are coming to a head for clint and his building. any time david aja drops in to draw an issue it elevates an already good book. this run is going to be an evergreen.

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batman/superman #9 : JAE LEE.

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elephantmen #54 : a killer cliffhanger for one of the very best serial reads there is.

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black science #4 : after a couple of issues that, while still excellent, felt like they were racing to keep up with the explosive debut issue, this feels like it’s leading us out of the fire and into the frying pan.

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sock monkey treasury : a gorgeous new collection of one of the more idiosyncratic cartoonist’s most accessible work.

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wolverine and the x-men #42 : jason aaron, nick bradshaw, chris bachalo and company wrap up their run on what has been one of the most fun books of the last few years. and they do it in style, with a touching, chuckling read that feels just right.

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miracleman #3 : you can argue with the way marvel has rolled this out, but you can’t argue with the material. this issue leads us into the truly masterful work alan moore does the rest of the way.

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–chris stevens

good this week

mouse guard legends of the guard #4 : david petersen’s anthology series wraps up with a rare bill willingham-illustrated tale, a painted story from jackson sze, and an illustrated ballad based on traditional mouse lyrics. i’ll be looking forward to the next series. this is a delightful package.

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the fox #2 : dean, you baffled me here, out MADMAN-ing MADMAN at times. but damn if you don’t look good doing it. and the added bonus of that killer paul pope cover is a cherry on top of a good old fashioned sundae someone slipped a micky into.

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elephantmen #52 : did you know that every copy sold of this series helps clothe & feed a baby elephant? well, it does. so don’t be cruel. buy some. the elephants will be better for it. you will be better for it.

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trillium #5 : things get topsy turvy in this standout sci fi adventure from jeff lemire.

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good this week

THIS WEEK’S ROUND-UP IS A TOUCH SPOILER-Y, BE WARNED!

society is nix : sunday press continues to unearth and preserve the comic strips that laid the foundation for an art form and to present them in the grand fashion the material so richly deserves. chris ware said it pretty well: this is a mind-blowing portable museum retrospective of the raw, tangled ferocity and frustration that went into the making of America.

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justice league #23 : i’m a sucker for the crime syndicate. blame it on wolfman & perez and reading crisis on infinite earths when i was 9.

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wolverine and the x-men #35 : this issue is a big smile. bradshaw & aaron wrap up the hellfire kids storyline, things go bamf in the night, and it’s the return of…BROO!

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think tank #9 : a new arc begins in this smart military/science/political romp.

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konga : steve ditko’s entire run, 300 pages, on this b-movie blast of a riff on king kong. goofy as shit and gloriously drawn, this is a gorgeous book.

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–chris stevens