Comics Creators

The Trades Thread - Hardcovers, Graphic Novels, and More


It’s hard to give an objective answer :slight_smile:

This will cover the period from 1958 to (I guess) 1965. So it’s pure silver-age storytelling, with all that implies. If you hate that style of comic, you’ll hate this and nothing I can say will convince you otherwise.

If you’ve enjoyed any other silver-age DC (and it’s quite a different beast to Silver-Age Marvel), you’ll enjoy this. By the standards of the time, a lot of the storytelling was pretty innovative. As the team was effectively just guest stars in Superboy at this stage, they weren’t subject to the rules that leading characters were: i.e. they could change, die, be bad guys and you weren’t actually sure if it was a ruse, and so on. Superman and Batman had to have a reset at the end of every story; the Legion didn’t. They had long running sub-plots, which was unheard of at the time.

The earlier stories by Jerry Siegel tend to be the worst, but the main writer in this book will be Edmond Hamilton, who was a god of pulp-era SF and threw out more wild ideas in one 12-page script than modern writers can manage in a decompressed 6-issue arc. He’s got more ideas than Grant Morrison on his very best day. Character building isn’t great, but then it’s silver-age DC so you don’t expect it. Read this for the far-out ideas, and you won’t be disappointed.

Here’s the litmus test. Look at the following picture and you will instantly know whether you want to read this book or not:


I will give it a shot. As I get older, I enjoy Silver Age DC a lot more. I love the willingness to cast crazy ideas around like there was no tomorrow.


I said to my friends yesterday that they need to katate chop me and confiscate my card if I attempt to order any more Marvel omnis, as the reality of paying £55 for Waid’s DD omni actually hit my bank account. But I did give a mitigating clause for a reprint of Simonson’s Thor! So the universe has either done me a solid here… or called my buff to bring wreck and ruin to my finances, depending on how you look at it.

(I actually also gave mitigating clauses for reprints of Fraction and Aja’s Iron Fist, Bendis and Maleev’s Daredevil and Wheadon and Cassiday’s Astonishing X-Men… my willpower is quite poor).


Finally! About fucking time:

EDIT: Also spotted:


I’m currently reading X-Men: The Gift, which is an Epic Collection covering around 1985. It’s further into Claremont’s run than I’ve read (properly) before, the softcover Masterworks taking me up only to the end of Dark Phoenix and I had hoped the Epics would pick up from there. Anyway, I’ve mostly rolled with the changes, but this is very much a trough in Claremont’s run. There’s a Phalanx story that doesn’t really do much, a Gulan Kath story that wants to be more about Spider-Man than the X-Men, an issue starring Power Pack (which seems to be a retread of a story from their own comic), a two-issue Alpha Flight team-up mini (with lovely Paul Smith art), an annual that does a naff “imaginary story” casting a few of the regulars as space pirates, a Barry Windsor-Smith drawn issue focusing on powerless Storm in Africa which desperately wants to be that post-Armour Wars Iron Man issue BWS did. Nothing outright dreadful (well, the annual maybe) but very little to sink your teeth into.

The weakest part is saved for last though - a four issue Nightcrawler mini series by Dave Cockrum. I’m only two issues in, but boy is it bad. I’m glad the Epic Collections are including supplementary material like this though. I just wish they were better.


I read this thinking, God yes that was bad, but it could be worse, at least he’s not reading that Nightcr–

–oh, ok ,never mind :slight_smile:


Was that one of the Lifedeath issues?


Erm, I think so?

It was this one.

So, the second one, I guess.


Seekers Into The Mystery

It was interesting reading this some 20-25 years later, as I can’t recall when I read this in its original run but I know it was a long time ago.

Things I noticed more this time around, which I likely skimmed over before, is just how much of a self-destructive mess Lucas Hart is. Nor, ultimately, does DeMatteis fix him by the end, this isn’t this kind of story. No, the story is more how someone who is total mess, for reasons both within and outside of his control, starts to get better and then continues to do so, but not without significant relapses along the way.

The art roster is excellent: Muth, Barr, Zulli and Thompson - that is quite the art crew. No surprise to anyone either that it was editorial duo of Berger and Bond that assembled this set of talent for the run too.

Overall, it remains what it always was - a spiritual exploration, of covering all kinds of ideas without going to the negative aspects of religions or cults. In that respect it succeeds very well, as it does in terms of psychology. Worth taking a look at? Yeah, I’d say so.

James Bond 007: Volume 2: Eidolon

This was excellent. All in all these two volumes were a great surprise. Part of the success of the story here, like its predecessor, is it’s not about Bond, how his head works or his feelings, it’s all about the day job, which, if necessary, involves killing people, quickly and efficiently.

Of the other, future volumes I’m ambivalent about, though Casino Royale might be worth it as it has Southworth who did Stumptown. Hammerhead I’m uncertain of, Diggle I can take or leave. The Felix mini with the creative combo of Robinson-Campbell sounds a must-buy.


Glad you liked James Bond, Ben :+1:t3:


The Goddamned: Volume 1: Before the Flood

On the one hand, it can’t be denied that Aaron-Guera are one hell of a creative team, but I find myself taking issue with their choices on this book.

For all that it is well done, this is a relentlessly brutal, nihilistic book that lacks the lighter elements that made Scalped a more balanced read. Nor can this match the characters of their previous work.

The recurring sense I had when reading this set of five issues is that they needed an editor. They needed someone to say that it’s gone beyond excessive, that it’s not working. Image seem committed to really giving their creators free reign, which can work, but in this case, some restraint really is needed. It starts off with a kid pissing on a guy in a shit hole and… Well, that kinda sets the tone and tells you what kind of book you’re reading.


At least you can’t say that you didn’t know what you were getting into.


Yeah. I love Southern Bastards (in my top 5 ongoing, easily), but The Goddamned really is a tough read.


It’d be more accurate to say that you think that!

Scalped had its scenes of brutality sure, but not all the time, in comparison The Goddamned is Scalped’s brutality turned up to eleven!


I remember buying the first issue when it came out, appreciated the art but not much else. It’s very grim, like you say. Southern Bastards turned me off with it’s darkness too.


I adore Southern Bastards but I didn’t get much out of the first issue of The Godammed.

I do have the trade and I will get to it, because I love the creative team - but I’m not in a huge rush.

Although all my trade reading has slipped because I’m reading extended version of The Stand while commuting and it’s taken me forever (200 pages left so nearly there)


Yeah, Southern Bastards starts with a dog taking a crap! But there’s something else to that one in terms of how it shows all these broken, dead-end, going-nowhere lives.


This Southern Bastards analysis is awesome…


Wow, it’s really great to see this thread still going along so strongly! I haven’t logged on in AGES.


Britannia vol. 1 - Peter Milligan & Juan Jose Ryp.

It makes me happy to read a quality Peter Milligan book again after the lackluster Terminal Hero and The Discipline. Britannia is a Valiant series that follows Antonius Axia, a legionnaire who has been transformed by Roman priestesses into the world’s first detective. Apparently, this will be a series of mini-series following Axia’s cases. His first takes him to Britannia, where a demonic entity is attacking both the Roman outpost there and the British locals. While there is plenty of the detailed gory action you’d expect from Ryp, there is still space in the story for Axia to apply his detective skills. There’s nothing Earth-shattering about this story, but it’s well told and well drawn, and like I said, as a Milligan fan this was a pleasure to read.