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This Week in Geek 11/26

by Matt Baum (11/26/08).
Cover of Body Bags one shot
Cover of Umbrella Academy Dallas #1
Cover of Batman #681

This Week in Geek is a weekly blog about new comics written by WorthPoint Comic book Worthologist Matt Baum. Every Wednesday Matt takes a look at the week’s new comics from a collector’s point-of-view and discusses which books may be hard to find in the near future and why. Make sure to click on the hot links for previews and more information on the comics, characters, story-lines and creators discussed here.

This Wednesday is the day many of us Bat-fans have been waiting for. Since Grant Morrison took over Batman in 2006, the title has been a wild ride that has ultimately led fans and collectors to tomorrow’s final issue of “Batman R.I.P.” Although it had been rumored for months now, an article in the BBC news this past Monday made it official; as of tomorrow, according to Morrison, Bruce Wayne will not be Batman. Now, don’t panic. The article doesn’t say Bruce will be killed, which would seem counterproductive to the fan-base of not only the comic but the wildly successful Batman film franchise. The latest franchise that is. However, if anyone would kill Bruce Wayne it would be Morrison. I can picture him throwing his head back and cackling as nerds everywhere cry out silently, in all caps, on comic-fan-site web-boards across the Internet. Trust me, he’s not afraid to blow Batman’s head off and have his corpse eaten by rabid dogs, if you’ve read Morrison’s Invisibles or Hellblazer then you also know it’s true. I was tempted to skip work to find out Wayne’s fate; yes, I’m that big of a nerd. One thing is for certain, eBay will light up with issues of Batman #681 starting at midnight tonight. I’m not predicting a shortage, but who knows; we are in a recession. Maybe retailers cut back on their orders as readers began tightening their financial belts. We could have an instant Bat-sell-out on our hands. Maybe I will skip work just to be safe.

Also shipping this week; Rafel Grampa’s Mesmo Delivery is being billed as a road adventure in the vein of Convoy meets the Twilight Zone. Brazilian native Grampa’s art is some of the freshest and kinetic work I’ve encountered in years and I’m very much looking forward to his first major comic offering. Grampa has worked with Gabriel Ba (Cassanova, The Umbrella Academy) and Fabio Moon (Cassanova) and has done design work for the Cartoon Network, Diesel and Coca-Cola. Mesmo Delivery tells the story of Rufo, an ex-boxer tasked with delivering a secret cargo that even he cannot know of. If you can’t find a copy at your local comic shop demand they order one for you. Grampa is an up and coming comic talent that will probably be drawing some of your favorite books very soon.

Are you one of those pathetic fools that ignored the hype and missed out on the Marvel “Secret Invasion” storyline only to later find yourself pale and sweaty like a desperate junkie, digging through back-issue bins searching for long sold out issues of New Avengers? If you are, don’t blame me. I’ve been screaming about how good this storyline is since day-one. Regardless, now you too can join the cool kids on the “Secret Invasion” bandwagon with the New Avengers Vol 8: Secret Invasion Book 1 Premiere Hardcover. Vol 8 contains New Avengers #38-#42 which details the beginning of the Skrull Invasion that will be remembered as one of Marvel’s best crossover events. Available at comic shops everywhere for $19.95.

And now, as I do every week, my buy list for the week of 11/25/2008. For a complete list of comics shipping this week click here. To find a comic shop near you click here.

Batman #681
Buffy the Vampire Slayer #19
Captain America #44
Daredevil #113
DMZ #36
Guardians Of The Galaxy #7
Hulk #8
Incredible Hercules #123
Justice Society of America – Kingdom Come Special: The Kingdom
Nova #19
Secret Invasion: Inhumans #4 of 4
Superman #682
Thor: Man of War
The Umbrella Academy: Dallas #1 of 6
X-Force #9

Remember to contact me with your questions, concerns, threats, and suggestions as to what I am or should be reading.

So let’s talk speculation. As you may or may not know, the whole purpose of this blog is to arm the comic nerd with the information he or she needs to make an informed and quality new comic purchase every week. While they might not be worth piles of money, they may be pretty hard to find in the near future.

Batman #681; DC; Written By Grant Morrison; Art by Tony Daniel; Cover by Alex Ross; $3.99

Why it’s hot: Don’t turn on your TV. Don’t pick up a newspaper, don’t answer your phone and for god’s sake if some nerd in your comic shop tries to ruin the end of this one smash their face in before they can make a sound. Bat’s #681 is the final chapter of “Batman R.I.P.” and it very well may be the death of Bruce Wayne. Normally I would say there’s not a snowflake’s chance in Baghdad DC would kill Batman, but that was before Marvel killed off Captain America two years ago and sold a million comics in the process. All bets are off the table. I have no idea what’s going to happen. The only thing we do know is after tomorrow Bruce Wayne will not be Batman.

Why it’ll go fast: I can think of 500,000,000 reasons why this book will sell out, the main being news coverage. The death of Batman is big news, especially after the Dark Knight grossed over $500,000,000 at the box office this past summer (get it 500 million reasons? Oh whatever. You wouldn’t know wit if it bit you on your…). Watch for USA Today and CNN to pick up on this story, they love these nerd headlines. Ill even go as far as to predict Conan O’Brien makes a joke about Batman’s death in his monologue. The point is when the media picks up on these comic stories people that don’t usually buy comics seem to come out of nowhere to do so. For a complete RIP checklist click here.

The Umbrella Academy: Dallas #1; Dark Horse; Written By Gerard Way; Art by Gabriel Ba; Covers by Gabriel Ba and Jim Lee; $2.99.

Why it’s hot: The Eisner Award winner for best limited series of 2007 returns with more of your favorite misunderstood heroes with parent issues in the long awaited second chapter of the Umbrella Academy. With every thing from news of an animated series to rumors of an upcoming film, My Chemical Romance front-man, Gerard Way’s Umbrella Academy couldn’t be hotter. (For the record I can’t stand the guys band but I have to admit, he writes great comics. Cheers Gerard).

Why it’ll go fast: The geeks are sold on this one. I, like many like me, fought the urge to read the first Umbrella Academy solely based on the fact that I couldn’t stand the band that the writer sang for. Month’s several brow beatings for being a music snob later I admit I paid way too much for issues one and two but have no regrets as I loved both the writing and Gabriel Ba’s incredible art. This is not to say that I am the King of Geeks leading all nerds to the shop to buy the new Umbrella Academy; which my finance will tell you is absolutely true. The buzz on this comic is huge so get to your shop early and hope it’s still there.

Body Bags #1; Image Comics; Written and drawn by Jason Pearson; $5.99.

Why it’s hot: Back in 1996 Pearson first introduced readers to Panda and Clownface, the father-daughter contract killer team and stars of Body Bags in a hyper-violent 4-issue mini-series from Dark Horse comics. Nine years later Pearson brought his family of killers to Image comics under the 12 Gauge imprint for a new short story. Call him slow, perfectionist, or whatever else, but Pearson and Body Bags are back again with their first full comic since 1996. Call me excited.

Why it’ll go fast: First of all, it’s been 12 years since readers have seen an issue of Body Bags and most didn’t read it in the first place. Those who did, myself included, fell in love with the iconic Clownface character and his penchant for extremely bloody murder. It was the 90s, I was a sick horror addicted youngster. Do I still care? We’ll see tomorrow. One thing is for certain; retailers are going to order a six dollar one-shot of a comic that hasn’t been seen for more than a decade with great hesitance. Don’t expect to see piles of this one laying around but if you’re looking for a violent romp with excellent art, Body Bags might just be the comic for you.

That’s it for this week true believers. Time for this nerd to get some shut eye. Have a happy Turkey Day. I’ll be preparing an apple-wood smoked bacon wrapped turkey with pear cider gravy and then reading the rest of my Jack Kirby’s Fourth World Omnibus while watching the dog show and of course, football. Until next week, keep the questions coming. Also, check out my other blog The Comic Speculator, where I discuss classic yet still affordable back-issue comics. If you have any questions about these books or anything else in the comic book world feel free to contact me or post your question in the Comic Book community forum. Want to know what your comics are worth? Join WorthPoint for free and post your titles in the “Ask A Question” section. Remember to post the title, issue number and cover price.

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