At the end of last year, I wrote a terrible list, that I should really edit, of books I’d bought over the course of that entire year. You’d think that would be the end but recently I’ve found that I’ve become somewhat enamored at my growing collection of comics, which I briefly alluded to at the end of the my last post when I mentioned plans to buy certain books further in the future. This list, then, will include some of these plans, but not before I list the books that are yet to arrive, although some that are new as of the last list have already done so. Again, I’ll split them into sections, although it’ll be a bit better formatted this time, rather than the strain-on-the-eyes-wall-of-text of last time. So, first up, here’s stuff that’s been bought and has or has not yet arrived.
This one’s a bit unusual. It’s actually a book I asked my parents to buy me years ago when I was quite young, having recently gotten into and enjoyed my dad’s collection. In fact, for the short time I had it, it would’ve been the only comic book not part of my dad’s collection that I had, besides the first five volumes of the Complete Case Files they’d be buy me after this…fell apart. Indeed, the copy I owned all those years ago was either the first or second print of the book, and it was a shitty job Rebellion did. To be honest, compared to the DC comic books I have, as well as a few more from Image and Titan, I’m not sure they do much of a better job today. Pretty much every one of their trade paperbacks feel very cheaply made, at least when it comes to the binding and covers – the pages themselves are pretty good, I suppose – and they skimp on the extras, or do a lazy job on them (e.g. I couldn’t help but notice that one of the Caballistics Inc. collections’ cover gallery is there printed in black and white, even though they were obviously released in colour). Even the only hardcover I own by them, which is Trifecta, is quite poorly put together. In fact, they probably wouldn’t have bothered making it hardcover at all if it wasn’t for the lenticular part of the cover (which is cool, mind you). Still, the stuff I own today is much better than the one copy of this I had. As I went to read it a second time the pages literally fell out, which made me reluctant in picking it up again. Buuuut the humourous writing of John Wagner and Alan Diggle, and that sick Henry Flint artwork (yep, him again), won me over and, thankfully, this one seems like it’ll stay in good condition.
Other 2000AD Stuff
To be honest, it was Arthur Ranson’s artwork, and not Frazer Irving’s of the latter book (though he’s great, which is why I bothered to buy the other book too), that made me buy this because, as you’ll see, I also bought another series with him on art duties. Oddly, I don’t think I ever encountered him other than the once during the time I collected 2000AD. He was the artist of my favourite one-off comedy Dredd story, by John Wagner of course, who is also the writer of these books, about a guy who’s tormented by a toilet with A.I., but I really think that’s all I saw of him. Which is a shame, because he was the artist of the first three Button Man books, as collected in Get Harry Ex, as well as of another Dreddverse favourite character, Judge Anderson, written by Alan Grant, and in the future I’ll probably buy that too because I can’t imagine how good his art is in a story about a Judge with psychic powers. Incidentally, both Alan Grant and Arthur Ranson are the creators of the next book I bought.
You can check out the idea behind the story of this one. It doesn’t sound super amazing, but I am intrigued the mythical setting, the origins of which are apparently kept vague for the reader to base their own conclusions upon. More importantly, the idea behind this mythical world lends birth to images such as these which make up the brunt of the book. Yeah.
This is one I’ve been meaning to pick up for a while now. It’s written by Ian Edington, which would be good enough to be honest because that’s the amazing guy who wrote Stickleback. However, in this case, he’s joined by the artist of that series, D’Israeli and, let me tell you, those two guys are a fucking amazing combination. Not only do they both do their jobs as writer and storyteller incredibly well, but they go out of their way to throw in all these references to Ian Edington’s other creations, which would suggest they’re all part of the same universe, which is pretty amazing. Only, D’Israeli throws in a bunch of his very own unique references too and the cool thing is that he lists these references on his blog. Here’s an example, using the first story of Stickleback. Incredible, no? Well, get this: the rather amazing chap also goes as far as to reference artwork from 2000AD’s past, which is honestly kind of mind blowing. All of which to say, I can’t wait for this to arrive.
The Other Stuff I Didn’t Know How To Categorize Because It’s All Over The Fucking Place
This was bought on the whim, to be honest, and I was kind of nervous about receiving the first volume in case it looked terrible. But the first volume arrived earlier this morning and I had a very small look at only, for the sake of spoiling anything by accident, and I have to say that this really does look like quite something. Although I didn’t have the full context that went before it, I actually laughed at one thing I read. Had heard it was funny, sure, but I don’t usually expect to laugh aloud when reading any book, honestly. You can look up what it’s about in the link, but I won’t do so here since I have a feeling that it’s going to be a lot to talk about when I read it.
You might not have gotten the impression from my review of The Killing Joke, but I’m actually a massive Alan Moore fan, like many other people of course. But somehow it’s taken me forever to really pay attention to this. Again, look up what it’s about, although you should really do so especially more in this case as it’s very unusual for a comic book storyline. But I’m quite confident that I’ll enjoy it after a glance at the first volume, which has already arrived. Even if the story itself doesn’t turn out to be that amazing, however…well, it won’t matter. The artwork’s by J.H. Williams III who I’ve been wanting to buy Batwoman for, and indeed did buy one volume of that, as I’ll get to. This is after coming across this page from Grant Morrison’s Batman run, which is just fucking incredible. And you wouldn’t think he could do anything better than that, yet I had a look at some of his Batwoman stuff and nearly died. Then, as I say, the first volume of this arrived and, well…I don’t even know what to say. It speaks for itself, I suppose.
It was the New 52 Batwoman that I was meaning to start with, but not until after all three volumes of that were available as trade paperbacks, which they’re not yet. This was just something I stumbled across accidentally, but it’s part of the canon of New 52, acting as a prequel of sorts to what happens there. Literally bought it for J.H. William’s artwork, and who can blame me?
Well, I haven’t bought all of it yet, although I’ll have done so when I get paid later this week. The link itself is to the omnibus edition that collects the first two volumes and after that you have no choice but to buy everything else separately, even the most recent books are really short. Thankfully, they’re cheap too, so I’m not complaining, especially with all the good things I’ve heard about this series, a series which I’ve been meaning to buy for a very long time. Well, now I have and it better be worth it. Honestly, though, I expect it will, especially as someone who’ll probably get a good bit of all the references in here as a reader of a lot of the books that the League, and the events that take place around them, are actually from.
Purchased on a complete whim because my copy is ultra cheap. Could regret, could not. Guess we’ll find out. Incidentally, I’m not sure where to place it in my Batman reading list. Might use it as a break during Grant Morrison’s run.
This is as far as I’ll be going with this series until volume 8 of these editions are released. But I have cheated my reading list and been reading the first volume, which is amazing. Like, really amazing. Which is also terribly sad because the forthcoming eighth volume is still far behind the trade paperbacks and, seeing as it’s them that I intend to stick to for the larger format, perfect binding, and extras at a better price, I’ll unfortunately be waiting quite a while to bring myself completely up to speed.
So, these will be the first extra special editions of a comic book that I’ll have bought, and they are indeed quite the wowzers. Did a lot of research before purchasing these but I have to really give it to Dark Horse for putting these together. Not only are they perfect starting points, but they’re larger than the tradebacks, packed with lots of extras, and beautifully formatted. The incredible price for them is simply the icing on the cake. So, yeah, I’ll be getting the rest of these no doubt. Had actually read a bunch of stories borrowed from my library years ago but I never thought of really getting into the character until I saw these beautiful little things.
And that ends my purchases. Mad, is it not? Yet the ridiculous thing is that I have plans for more purchases throughout the rest of the year, because I’m crazy. As you’ll notice from this list, there’s an interest in getting the better editions of books where their prices aren’t bad, and when they’re actually worth whatever extra money you pay.
These are stories of the Hellboy universe. They’re not formatted in quite the same beautiful fashion, but you’re still really getting your money’s worth here, which is fantastic. Apparently the series gets off to a shaky start, but finds its footing quickly enough, which is good.
This one’s still being debated. You see, when Marvel had their 50th anniversary last year, and celebrated doing so by giving away over 700 digital comics to people who registered at the time, I was on top of that deal as quick as hell because I’d never read anything from their side of the American superhero fence except two copies of Spiderman / X-Men that I bought ages ago. However, as I’ve recently gotten round to reading them, I…well, I fucking hate them, to be quite frank. Maybe the comics they gave away just weren’t very good representations of their work, but I neither liked the awful writing I came across, wherein no one seemed to know what subtlety meant, nor the art, the majority of which I can only describe as very “same-ish”, despite the fact it was by a number of different artists. However, I’ve heard nothing but good things about this series, collected here in an “Oversized” edition and, indeed, it sounds like it could be quite good, especially with its sense of humour. Still, I’m not convinced and debating it in my head. We’ll see…
Yet again another series I’ve been wanting to read for quite some time. It was by coincidence that I came across this, but it seems the perfect way to get into the series. However, I was concerned about the size of this great volume at over 1000 pages. The Walking Dead (a series I shall be critcising mercilessly in the future, by the way) did something similar and the binding has been fine on that, but this is obviously going for the look of some kind of grimoire and I was concerned the weight might be too much for the binding to last. Having done my research, though, it actually seems fine and it will be the edition I’ll pick up. Only problem is is that it costs a lot of money. Once I’ve finished the Hellboy collection with B.P.R.D., this will probably be my next purchase, and the second volume after that to finish the original run of the series. Can’t wait.
Rejoice! The one thing that disappointed me about Scott Pilgrim, a series I’ve borrowed from a friend, is the lack of colour. To me, the art’s just not something that worked well in black and white, especially when characters make references to Ramona dying her hair new colours, something you wouldn’t tell if it weren’t for them. However, as well as reprinting this in colour, the other cool thing about this yet to be completed collection is that O’Malley’s thrown in a bunch of extras and, best of all, formatted this in a larger scale, which looks fantastic. It’s not that far from being finished in this new format, but I’ll probably wait until it is before I buy these.
Why would I buy one of the comics my dad’s owned since he was a teenager a second time? For, quite simply, this edition’s fully printed script of Grant Morrison’s. Literally, that is the only reason I want this.
What the deuce?! Yeah, I had simply never known there was an 8th made in comic format of this guilty love of mine. To be honest, though, I probably wouldn’t care for it very much even then if it weren’t for the fact that Joss Whedon, whom I adore, is the writer behind this. So, yes, please. Incidentally, they’re fairly priced, but like the Hellboy collection, printed as “Library Editions”. It doesn’t appear they have extras but you can’t argue with those lovely hardcovers.
I’m undecided whether to buy these as hardcovers or in their trade paperbacks. I am, however, decided that I want them. First of all, I love the idea behind the story, especially as I’m to understand that the stories of characters who are offered this deal of 100 untraceable bullets all weave together for the concluding volumes. Secondly, I love the Frank Miller style artwork – that really does look amazing. Plus, in general, I’ve heard nothing but praise and I’m easily sold. Just kidding, but I have been hoping to read some Brian Azzarello in addition to Superman: For Tomorrow, and this seems to be his best stuff, perhaps outside of Wonder Woman which I’ve mentioned in the past as being on my to-buy list.
And that, as they say, is that. I know, I’m crazy. But I find it quite interesting that I’ve steered away from my love of video games to comics, a transition I’d like to talk about in the future perhaps because, although I’ve always thought video games have been the thing I’ve really wanted to take part in as a career, events have made me change my mind about that and, to be honest, I think I’m only just beginning to see the bigger influence comics have had upon me since I was a kid.
As to The Long Halloween. It’s finished, and was indeed amazing, so there’ll be a very positive review soon. Likewise, though I had intended to write my analysis I mentioned in my last post before that, it will be coming – I just happened to read the book too fast, because I enjoyed it so much. But the review will be first, hopefully on here tomorrow.