This Week in Geek 8/26/09

Superman creators Jerry Siegel and Joseph Shuster.

Superman creators Jerry Siegel and Joseph Shuster.

The long and ugly court battle for the rights to Superman between the Siegel family (Jerry Siegel, along with Joseph Shuster, were the creators of Superman) may be nearing an end. On Monday, Aug. 22, Judge Larson, who has been overseeing the legal case, ordered the Siegel family and DC Comics to use the next 30 days to try to come to a financial settlement. Below you’ll find the judges statement:

In light of the Court’s rulings to date in these companion cases, which have narrowed the areas of dispute between the parties, the Court believes that it would be prudent at this juncture for the parties to once again engage in meaningful settlement talks.

Previously, the parties utilized the good services of their jointly chosen mediator, Judge Daniel Weinstein (Ret.). The Court has also been informed that former California Supreme Court Justice Edward A. Panelli has graciously agreed to provide his services as a mediator for the parties if they so choose. The parties may contact Justice Panelli at (415) ***-****.

Regardless of which mediator’s services the parties wish to utilize, the Court hereby ORDERS the parties to devote the next thirty (30) days to engaging in good faith efforts to settle their dispute in the Superman and Superboy litigation. At the conclusion of this period, on September 18, 2009, the parties are to file a joint report, outlining the efforts that they have taken in furtherance of settlement (without, of course, revealing any of the substance of those efforts).

If the parties have not settled these cases at that point, the Court ORDERS a Status Conference to take place on September 21, 2009, at 11:00 a.m. to set further dates for the remaining phase two accounting trial in the Superman litigation.

For more on the history of the Siegel vs. DC battle, I would recommend reading “Men of Tomorrow,” by Gerard Jones. Jones’ book details the history behind the golden age of DC and highlights the creation of Superman and the birth of super hero comics.

It’s a gigantic week for new comics, so prepare yourselves. Below you’ll find my pile of comics for this Wednesday, Aug. 19. For a full list of comics shipping this week click here. To find a comic shop near you click here.

Batman and Robin #3
Batman: Widening Gyre #1 of 6
Dark Avengers #8
Dark Reign: Elektra #5 of 5
Dark Wolverine #77
Dark X-Men: The Beginning #3 of 3
Detective Comics #856
Fantastic Four #570
The Flash: Rebirth #4 of 6
Green Lantern #45
Guardians of the Galaxy #17
Incredible Hercules #133
Incredible Hulk #601
Justice Society of America #30
New Avengers #56
New Mutants #4
Nova #28
The Red Circle: The Shield
Secret Warriors #7
Superman #691
Superman’s Pal, Jimmy Olsen Special #2

Thoughts on the Pile: If ever there’s been one, this is truly a wallet-crushing week for new comics. There is a perfect storm of Marvel and DC titles hitting the stands this week. So many titles in fact, I find myself wondering, do I need all these comics? Instead of preaching about the titles I love, this week I’m just going to look at what I might not need. Your input on the subject would be appreciated. Batman: Widening Guyere is the latest Kevin Smith offering. I’m giving it one chance, as I didn’t love his last Bat-book. The four “Dark” titles on the list are good fun, although I’ll probably sell the Dark X-men: The Beginning after reading. Incredible Hulk #601 marks the return of Greg Pak to the green goliath, but if the title is too Son-of-Hulk-centric, I could see myself losing interest pretty quickly. I loved Planet Hulk, but gave up on Skarr pretty early. JSA may just be in an adjustment phase. I wasn’t crazy about Willingham and Sturges’ first issue, mainly because of dialogue issues and the sudden introduction of the two new characters to an already overcrowded team. I feel sorry for anyone that has to pick up a book after Geoff Johns, so I’ll give the new team at least six issues to hook me. New Mutants was a title that originally intrigued me but as of issue 3, isn’t the first mutant book I’m reading each month. It’s not bad, but do I need it? I might just rather see these characters as X-men.

Doesn’t anyone ever graduate from Xavier’s Academy? And finally, The Red Circle: The Shield. I think I’m buying this solely because I bought the other three issues. Will I pick up the regular series of the Web and the Shield? Since the JMS one-shots didn’t grab me; probably not.

Here’s a look at my Speculator Picks of the Week. These are comics that could sell out very quickly and re-emerge at twice the price on the secondary market.

28 Days Later #1: BOOM Studios

28 Days Later #1

28 Days Later #1

Solicitation: A new ongoing series! 28 Days Later comes to comics as an ongoing series, connecting the film 28 Days Later to its sequel 28 Weeks Later! Focusing on Selena, one of the three survivors of the first film, as she embarks on an epic journey of her return to Great Britain! Scripted by Hexed and Fall of Cthulhu’s Michael Alan Nelson and drawn by newcomer sensation Declan Shalvey.

$3.99 US
Written by Michael Alan Nelson; Pencils by Declan Shalvey; Variant Cover by Sean Phillips; Cover by Tim Bradstreet.

Why it’ll go fast: Every once and a while a particularity cool-looking Zombie comic with a cool cover and franchise recognition behind it comes along, sells out real quick and causes a huge stink on eBay. 28 Days Later seems to have all the right things going for it including the fact that Boom comics are, for the most part, very under-printed and under-ordered. This one could be very hard to find by Wednesday afternoon.

Beta Ray Bill: Godhunter #3 of 3: Marvel Comics

Beta Ray Bill: Godhunter #3 of 3

Beta Ray Bill: Godhunter #3 of 3

Solicitation: Beta Ray Bill has stalked his prey across the universe . . . driven to punish the ever-feared Galactus. Now, with the Planet-Eater on his knees, Bill discovers he has one final, brutal price to pay. In an apocalyptic battle to decide the fate of world upon world, can Bill make this ultimate sacrifice?!

48 PGS
$3.99 US
Written by Kieron Gillen; Pencils by Kano; Inks by Alvaro Lopez; Cover by Patrick Zircher.

Why it’ll go fast: When retailers originally began ordering this title, Straczynski had yet to mention that he would be leaving his monthly Thor title, which would set in motion the events that would name Kieron Gillen (writer of the critically acclaimed Phonogram for Image Comics) as his replacement. Even with that knowledge retailers may not have ordered much higher on a three-issue miniseries about Beta Ray Bill. Regardless, Gillen is the new writer on Thor, and many nerds have gone looking for this series for a preview of his work. One problem; Gillen’s Bill mini was very lightly ordered and now back issues of #1 and #2 are becoming scarce (July’s #2 issue of the mini only shipped 17,561 copies and checked in at #117 on the top 300 ordered comics for the month; Prices on eBay are still reasonable on the back-issues but that could change very soon.

Fantastic Four #570: Marvel Comics

Fantastic Four #570

Fantastic Four #570

Solicitation: Brand new creative team—brave new comics experience! Be there as Marvel’s newest exciting creator, Jonathan Hickman, teams up with superstar artist, Dale Eaglesham, to give you the Fantastic Four experience you’ve been waiting for! It’s adventure, it’s family, it’s tough questions in dark times . . . See what happens when Reed Richards tries to SOLVE EVERYTHING.

32 PGS
$2.99 US
Written by Jonathan Hickman; Pencils by Dale Eaglesham; Cover by Paul Mounts; Cover by Alan Davis.

Why it’ll go fast: Now that Mark Millar has finished his run on FF, with help, retailers are going to slash their orders, thinking that fans will be leaving the title. And they may be right in doing so, in the short term. When word gets out about how cool the new FF story line is and how good the comic looks thanks to Eaglesham’s amazing art, this issue will already be long gone. Writer Jonathan Hickman had a die-hard cult following before coming to Marvel, and now looks ready to explode on to the comic-scene scripting Marvel’s First Family. If you’ve ever been an FF fan then pick this issue up. You will not regret it.

Nerdy Question of the Week:

Excluding Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, who do you see as the seminal Fantastic Four creative team? I was a huge fan of John Byrne’s stuff in the ’80s but really have trouble with this question. Let’s hear it FF nerds.

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.

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