By Matt Baum
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. Also, feel free to post your comments in the new “comments” section below.
With the weekly shipping schedule of comics, it’s easy for nerds like me, who live and die with Diamond’s shipping schedule, to forget that there are people out there that would like to start reading comics but have no idea where to begin. Where does one start? With a new storyline? Perhaps a first issue? Truth be told, yes it is difficult for an outsider to join, or re-join, the ranks of comic nerd-dom due to the heavy continuity that pervades most stories. The same continuity that nerds love can be just as effective at holding new readers at bay. This week Marvel comics is trying to alleviate the stress of diving back into the seemingly impenetrable world of comics with their new book, Marvel: Your Universe #1. The comic will give readers a chance to look at five different stories from the Marvel U. This issue includes Ghost Rider, Nova, the X-men, Iron Fist and Ms. Marvel. Think of it as a tasting platter for the nerd with refined tastes. If you’ve been thinking about checking out or returning to the Marvel Universe this is the perfect chance to do so.
Below you’ll find my pile of comics I’ll be purchasing this Wednesday, Feb. 4. As always, I’d love to hear your input on what I am or should be reading. For a complete list of this week’s comics click here. To find a comic shop near you click here.
Agents of Atlas #1
Astonishing Tales #1
Black Panther #1
Buffy the Vampire Slayer #22
Dead Irons #1
Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds #3 of 5
Hellboy: The Wild Hunt #3 of 8
House of Mystery #10
Immortal Iron Fist #22
The Invincible Iron Man #10
Saga of The Swamp Thing: Book 1
Secret Six #6
Secret Warriors #1
So that’s my pile of comic distractions for this week. Now let’s talk speculation. As you may or may not know, the 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, these issues may be pretty hard to find in the near future.
Agent’s of Atlas #1; Marvel Comics; Written by Jeff Parker; Art by Carlo Pagulayan; Covers by Arthur Adams and Ed Mcguinnes (1:20 variant); 48 pages; $3.99.
Solicitation: The heroes of the 1950s are back with big plans for the 21st Century! When Federal enforcers under the hand of NORMAN OSBORN burst into an armory under control of the Atlas Foundation, Jimmy Woo’s Agents go head-to-head with the new powers that be. How it all goes down will make the playing field of the modern Marvel Universe more volatile than ever! PLUS: A 12-page 1950s flashback to the Agents of Atlas’ first savage encounter with the man known as Wolverine!
Why it’ll go fast: Not many people read the first Agents of Atlas miniseries back in October of 2006; it debuted at #133 on the top 300 ordered comics that month. Even though the back issues don’t guide much higher than cover price, because of light initial ordering, they are hard to find. I only found three complete runs on eBay. If you can find them, I recommend picking up the 2006-07 Agents series as it was a great read and, if the latest series is a hit, they could be seeing premium prices soon. Based on the low sales of the first series I would expect to see piles of the latest Agents #1 on the stands this week.
Dead Irons #1, Dynamite Ent; Written by James Kuhoric; Art by Jason Shawn Alexander; Covers by Jae Lee and Jason Shawn Alexander (1:8 variant); 32 pages; $3.99.
Solicitation: Three bounty hunter siblings blaze a path of death and destruction across the old west. Traveling by moonlight they rip criminals, screaming for mercy, from their hiding places, but none is ever given. Each bounty is torn, broken and bled dry before they are delivered dead and payment collected in gold—no silver. The Irons are the most feared bounty-hunting killers in the west, but that fear isn’t based on them being the fastest with a pistol or rifle. It’s because they’re the walking dead.
Why it’ll go fast: I was just having a discussion with a friend about zombies in the old west, because I’m a nerd… yes, wherein he asked if such a theme existed. I was pleased to tell him about Dead Irons and how great the series looks. Before I get flooded with e-mails, no Dead Irons is not breaking new ground here, Image/IDW’s “Desperadoes” is one zombie-western that comes to mind; but this is the first time in any zombie title I can recall where the zombies are the good guys. I can’t wait! (Yes, I’m aware of Marvel’s living Zombie character, but would call him both a “hero” and a “zombie” in only the loosest sense of the words.)
Secret Warriors #1; Marvel Comics; Written by Brian Michael Bendis and Jonathan Hickman; Art by Stefano Casselli; Covers by Jim Cheung and Carlos Pacheco (1:15 variant); $3.99.
Solicitation: Exploding out of the pages of Secret Invasion and Mighty Avengers! Nick Fury and his new band of young heroes uncover the darkest secret in the history of the Marvel Universe! A secret that will crack the Internet into tiny little pieces! A secret that sends the Secret Warriors tumbling into an underworld of rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, super-powered spies and global criminal organizations. This is the Nick Fury book you’ve been waiting for! Be there for the Marvel debut of award-winning Nightly News creator Jonathan Hickman as he teams up with Secret Warriors co-creator Brian Bendis to unveil a new era in Marvel mania!
Why it’ll go fast: Bendis’ new team of Secret Warriors look to be leading the fight against Norman Osborne’s Dark Reign, they all have great origins and are related to some cult favorite B-list heroes and they are led by my favorite Marvel character, Nick Fury. If that’s not enough, up and coming writer Jonathan Hickman (Red Mass for Mars, Pax Romana) co-writes with super-star Bendis along with the fantastic artwork of Stefano Caselli. Secret Warriors has been eagerly awaited since it’s announcement last summer at Wizard World Chicago. Initial orders on SW may be low due to the lack of A-list heroes which could result in an instant sell-out. Add this comic to your pull-list now!
Indy book of the Week:
The Big Skinny: How I Changed My Fattitude; Villard Books; Written and Drawn by Carol Lay; 208 pages; $18.
Solicitation: Here’s the skinny: After a lifetime of yo-yo dieting with pills, hypnosis and ill-informed half-measures, Carol Lay finally shed her excess pounds and kept them off. Now this California cartoonist shares her experiences in a funny, genuine and eye-popping graphic memoir that tells Carol’s story and shows you how you can do it, too.
Why you should care: Well for starters, studies show that one in four Americans are overweight, but I’m not here to preach. I love that Indy comics can do anything, including help readers lose weight. They don’t always have to be about self-introspection, alcoholism and murder. Indy comics can be funny and helpful too.
Nerdy question of the week:
Now that DC’s Final Crisis has ended and the dust is beginning to settle collector’s have an important question. Not “did I enjoy this,” because I would argue the book itself was hard to follow at best, but perhaps, “are these going to be worth anything?” It’s a good question and one I’ll be examining in my other blog The Comic Speculator. Collectability aside, what did you think of DC’s latest event? Did Final Crisis hit you in the heart or in the pants? And was it worth the $28 price of admission?
That’s all for this week folks. I’m going to try to figure out what happened to last week’s blog and promise to try to keep things weekly. Thanks to those that e-mailed concerns. 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.
Matt Baum is WorthPoint’s comic book Worthologist
WorthPoint—Discover Your Hidden Wealth