April 14th, 2021

J.R.'s Picks:

The Batman and Scooby Doo Mysteries #1 – Scooby Doo and Batman have a weirdly long history together and, lucky for us, history repeats itself once again! When Batman opens an exhibit in a local museum, he notices his weird purple gloves he wore on his first outings are not the originals. After calling in the Scooby gang for help, they realize there’s only one way to tackle this problem: time travel! Scooby, Shaggy, and Velma are sent back in time to investigate the glove swap while the rest of the gang helps Robin to find clues in the modern times. Just a plain delightful story featuring art that’s a carbon copy of the old Scooby Doo, Where Are You? cartoon and Bat-jokes for everyone. Perfect for readers young or old!
Spider-Man: Spider’s Shadow #1 – Chip Zdarsky kicks off a new multi-issue What If series and boy, does he do it in a big way. Flashing back to the days of the black suit, Peter Parker has some anger brewing and it’s not helping him much. After a fight with MJ, Peter hits the streets for a fight with Hobgoblin that ends with him unmasking the villain and shaming him. Spider-Man then meets up with Black Cat who says his overly harsh treatment was justified and should be used by him more often. Pete leaves on the fence to go have dinner with Aunt May but events unfold which push the web crawler into fully accepting the symbiote. A dark take on our classic hero set up in a believable way- expertly done as always by Chip!
Locke and Key: Hell and Gone #1 – Two very popular horror-adjacent series crossover in a big way this month with this new series. Mary is on a mission to save her brother and her father’s souls from the brink of existential madness so she travels to London to find a solution. In exchange for one of her family’s precious magic keys, she’s granted an audience with the trapped Dream. When his captor is gone, he draws the outline of his helm and Mary recognizes it from the house. After acquiring it, she’s transported to the House of Mystery where Cain has a surprise for his brother Abel in the form of a Key Cannon and much more. Only more wild dream adventures spring from there and thanks to the smart dialogue and plot, I’ll definitely be around for the next time.
Proctor Valley Road #2 – The spook tour the girls had set up didn’t exactly go as planned and now they’re a boat-load of hot water. The town thinks they helped the missing boys across the Mexican border as they were all scheduled for the Vietnam draft. Little does the town or the girls know, they were brutally murdered by demons. Without this knowledge, the girls hope to find them in the desert and clear their names. After going to a dump to plan out their rescue and do a bunch of shrooms, glowing letters appear on their bodies that spell out “LANDLADY”. Who is this mysterious landlady though and what’s her connection to these ghouls? Weird, wild horror only the mind of Grant Morrison could cook up. Don’t miss out!

Diarra's Picks:

Spider-Man: Spider’s Shadow #1 - The “What If...” series was such a fun concept, I’m so glad they are reviving it! Here we go back to Peter’s first interaction with the symbiotes. This time instead of resisting the suit, he embraces it. Spidey, like many of our favorite heroes, follows “the code”, and they all have been pushed close to breaking it. Beside his web-slinging, Peter has been on edge about some personal issue. So when Green Goblin goes too far, Spidey gives into the suit. I can’t wait to see how unfriendly this neighborhood Spider-man gets!
Locke & Key: Hell & Gone #1 - Issue #0 gave us some insight on this new family in Key House, or rather a former family. Left mourning family lost during WWI, Mary Locke goes across the world to trade keys for the secret to resurrection. She soon learns this is a fools errand, but she meets Dream because, oh yeah, it’s a Sandman mashup! He is being held by Mary’s shadey business partner, but with a new common enemy Dream gives Mary a clue. Turns out the secret to freeing Dream and Mary’s mission might be hidden inside a child’s plaything. Mary isn’t a stranger to the impossible, but where she is off to amazes even her!
Home #1 - Inspired by Trump’s 2018 family separation policy, Julio Anta and a talented team thought up Home. They shine a light on the callus treatment of immigrants while filling the lack of Hispanic representation in the hero world. Our story starts with a mother and son traveling to the border in order to seek asylum, but new policies leave them separated, caged, and waiting in limbo. Son, Juan, is just as confused and scared as the children around him, but he has a secret. When a guard at the facility threatens him, a scared Juan unleashes his firey secret. Now Juan is free but he is alone, and just wants to get his family home.

Stone's Picks:

Phantom On The Scan #1 - Are you a fan of the movie Scanners? Do you enjoy the sight of peoples heads exploding? Well then by all accounts this book is for you. A single man tasks himself with grouping together individuals similar to himself so that they can work together to rid themselves of that which binds them. The artwork inside compliments the story so well. It’s gritty and helps to establish the tone especially with some of the more gruesome images. This genre isn’t something I delve into often, but I will definitely be reading the next issue to see where this leads.
Jules Verne’s Lighthouse #1 - A futuristic take of Vernes’ 1905 book The Lighthouse at the End of the World. A crew on a space station must monitor and maintain a supercomputer that guides ships through wormholes. The interference of space pirates is going to make that a lot harder, as the crew try to survive these intruders. You get a little time in the beginning to meet characters, but it isn’t long before everything goes awry which causes information on characters to be sprinkled throughout the book. The best character by far is this robot named Moses who reminded me of K2 from Rouge One. Serious, but has comedic tendencies. Though a different take on Verne’s original material, it is an adaptation that will surely be enjoyed.
Batman: The Detective #1 - Bye Bye Gotham, and hello Lancashire. Bruce is on his way to the United Kingdom to solve the case of a plane brought down by a bunch of thugs who dress like Batman. I find it funny how he talks about not having really accomplished anything In Gotham so he decides to go to a different continent to do the same things he was doing, hoping for different results. I like Batman’s portrayal in this as it reminded me a lot of Frank Miller’s Batman. Him talking about how he’s not as young as he was, and he needs to make sure he’s hitting harder to cause more pain and ending the fight quickly. The reveal at the end has me excited to meet the big bad, and await just what else they may have up their sleeve!