June 19th, 2024

Rob's Picks:

Destro #1

Hot on the heels of the superb Cobra Commander limited series, Image launches another villain-centric title for the Energon Universe from writer Dan Watters. Picking up where Cobra left off, Destro has brought out his newest toys for a field test in the tumultuous Republic of Darklonia. Seizing the country is child's play for the metal-headed maestro, who leaves Darklonia in the hands of a chosen lackey with deep ties to the nation. The success of his new weapons is encouraging but does little to make Destro trust his newest ally. Recognizing the danger of a partnership with the megalomaniacal Cobra, he seeks wisdom in the ancestral home of Clan Destro. Getting back to the usual business of trading arms to a discerning international clientele proves difficult when Tomax and Xamot (The Crimson Twins) make an aggressive bid for a bigger slice of the market. Like all the titles in the Energon Universe thus far, Image has put this book in the hands of a creative team whose strengths are uniquely aligned with the central character. James McCullen Destro XXIV has a style of villainy distinct from Cobra’s, playing a game of deadly chess where the Commander would flip the board. This premiere provides plenty of action while expanding the world of G.I. Joe to include even more classic characters. If you haven’t read Cobra Commander, Duke, or the still ongoing Scarlett, this book is another great opportunity for new readers to get onboard.

Dracula: Blood Hunt #2

When we last saw Brielle Brooks (aka Bloodline), she fled the home of Doctor Strange, running from a shocking revelation about her father. The streets of New York are still overrun with vampires, and the Bloodcoven continues their hunt. Even with her vampiric powers, Bloodline can only fight it out alone for so long, but she gets help from one of the city's most legendary homegrown monsters: The Devil of Hell's Kitchen. After saving her life, Matt Murdock provides a hard lesson in the costs of being a hero. She hoped to outrun the mission Dracula has thrust upon her, but Murdock teaches her that heroism sometimes means confronting those closest to you, not to save the world or yourself, but to save the part of them that can still be saved. Lore and Carratù pull a great deal of sincere emotion from this bloody event series, capitalizing on the fantastic groundwork laid out in Lore’s Bloodline series from last year (a great read available in trade, by the way). We’re getting set up for a huge showdown for the third and final book in this series, so check this out to see how Bloodline and the King of all Vampires get set for the final battle!

Uncle Scrooge and the Infinity Dime #1

Disney was a huge presence in the world of comics long before acquiring Marvel, and few books remain as well-loved as the classic Uncle Scrooge and Donald Duck comics by legendary writer/artist Carl Barks. Writer Jason Aaron (Once Upon a Time at the End of the World, Darth Vader: Black, White, & Red) pays homage with this epic issue that takes the miserly Scottish duck on a multiversal adventure. Uncle Scrooge has always loved money, prizing above all the first dime he ever made. He built his empire on the back of that dime, adding more and more riches to his vault. For one Scrooge in the far-flung corners of the infinite multiverse, being the richest duck on earth or even in his universe is not enough. He aspires to be the wealthiest in all possible worlds and begins leaping from world to world, robbing himself to become the Scrooge-Above-All. Of course, Scrooge-prime isn’t going to stand for this, and a team of alt-Scrooges assembles to set things right. This is such a fun book, a supersized loving tribute to the classic comics from a writer at the top of his game. A great book for those who have nostalgia for the originals or for kids that have yet to experience the fun of old-school Disney duck adventures.

Solomon's Picks:

Ultimate Spider-Man #6

Ultimate Spider-Man delivers a spectacular issue this week! We see Peter Parker and Harry Osborn team up to confront a recently powered-up Wilson Fisk in a high-stakes showdown within his tower. Kingpin proves to be a formidable opponent for the dynamic duo, shrugging off their attacks and sending them fleeing with several wounds. The illustrator does a wonderful job selling this fight, making the book worth it for the visuals alone. I really enjoyed the scenes where Peter and his family have an honest conversation about what has been happening over the last four months. Their concern for his safety and his acknowledgment of their worries highlight one of this run's biggest strengths. The final page of this book will leave you with a wide grin, so make sure you grab a copy ASAP!

Venom Separation Anxiety #2

Separation Anxiety released its second issue this week, and it was a great read! We learn more about Zebediah’s motivations and witness parallels between him, Eddie, and their almost identical goals. We even get a fantastic guest appearance from the Thing, who has been mind-controlled by Zebediah himself! Like the first issue, this was an epic, wonderfully illustrated, and enjoyable book, especially if you’re already a fan of Venom and Symbiotes. The fight between Venom and the Thing added a fun action dynamic to this book, though there is plenty to enjoy without it. Loved this issue and am looking forward to the next one where Eddie comes face to face with Wilson Fisk!

Uncanny Valley #3

Uncanny Valley returned to shelves this week with an excellent entry that expands the cast and story drastically. Oliver and Pecos Peet are still on the run from the deranged Toons who represent a mysterious order known as the First when they stumble upon a gas station. Peet grabs supplies while Oliver attempts to contact his mother before a sinister group of Toons confronts the pair. Just as it seems like they may be outnumbered, they miraculously have reinforcements bail them out. It’s then revealed that regular white paint is a Toon's biggest weakness, which is a hilarious and appreciated touch. I loved this issue and am very hyped to finally see what the world of Toons looks like in the next issue. I have been loving this series and definitely recommend it to everyone!