Comics Creators

The Trades Thread - Hardcovers, Graphic Novels, and More


You need:

  • Cable Classic Vol 2 has #9-15
  • Cable Classic Vol 3 has #16-20
  • For Cable 21-28 you want to grab Cable & X-Force Classic 1 - it’s now tricky to find and then
  • Cable & X-Force: Onslaught Rising which has just come out.

Changing tack, spotted this:

Which is way up from previous editions:

UNCANNY X-MEN (1981) 210-219; X-MEN ANNUAL (1970) 11; X-FACTOR (1986) 9-17, ANNUAL 2; NEW MUTANTS (1983) 46; THOR (1966) 373-374, 377-378; POWER PACK (1984) 27; DAREDEVIL (1964) 238; FANTASTIC FOUR VS. THE X-MEN 1-4; X-MEN VS. THE AVENGERS 1-4

I’m wondering if we might end up getting an Uncanny X-Men Omnibus 4 covering #176-209.


I hope so. That’s the one I really want. For all that sweet Romita Jr artwork.


Looks like Forbidden Planet (the .com one) is having a sale at the moment, with some fairly good prices on a few random odds and ends. I picked up a couple of books I’ve been looking for at a decent price for a while, as well as a couple of Green Lantern collections for my son.

(That WildCATS 3.0 book seems to be quite pricey everywhere else, so £6.99 is pretty good.)


Library comics! All suitably old, naturally. It seems my county library had enough budget to buy a dozen comics in 2015 and next to nothing since. Ah well.

Loki: Agent of Asgard
I think this is actually the first Al Ewing title I’ve read at length (well, five issues) and it’s ok but… I don’t know, it just feels like there’s something missing from it. There are some brilliant ideas: the concept of this being a new iteration of Loki distinct (possibly) from the old is good. I don’t mind the obvious Hiddleston influence and having Loki as a chaotic good character is an interesting place to take the character. I especially like the idea that his reward for each mission is that he gets an old myth scrubbed from the annals of Asgard. I really like Lee Garbett’s art too. But there’s something that just doesn’t quite click here. I think it’s maybe that I haven’t read JiM or Young Avengers, so I don’t know how this Loki came about after Kid Loki and so the (pointedly oblique) references to that went somewhat over my head when they’re meant to be dripping with meaning.

He-Man and the Masters of the Universe volume 1
This is DC’s take on He-Man, which I think has already fallen by the wayside, and going by this volume, I can see why. It’s pretty much a mess. There’s digital short by Geoff Johns and Howard Porter at the front, which barely ties into the following story. That’s written for an issue and a half by James Robinson, then Keith Giffen, with art by Philip Tan, bits by Porter and then Pop Mhan. And none of those people really nail the subject matter. Porter in particular does a really terrible Skeletor and Tan (I think?) provides an awful redesign of Mer-Man that I’m surprised Mattel okayed (he’s got a tail). Mhan’s better, but not amazing.
The big problem’s the story though, which picks up with Adam amnesiac of his real life, living as a woodcutter, but plagued by dreams of He-Man. Zoar appears and guides him across Eternia, where he runs into a similarly amnesic Teela and they fight off various of Skeletor’s evil warriors, who all know what’s happened and… bleh. It’s just five issues of a comic not quite getting around to being He-Man and then an underwhelming confrontation with Skeletor. Giffen overdoes the sarcy banter between Adam and Teela and all the “why do I recognise this person? I sort of remember that!” stuff quickly gets tiresome. This almost dystpoian take on MotU is just boring more than anything though. It’s a world where Skeletor’s won, but neither Robinson or Giffen have anything to really say about that. It’s all about Adam’s pretty predictable quest. There’s throwaway mention that it’s all come about due to Orko betraying the Masters which doesn’t really ring true at all for the character. The whole thing reminds me a lot of DC’s (or Wildstorm’s at least) Thundercats comic from about 15 years ago, which also decided to do a story of a dystopian world where the villain won. Is that really the only story to be done with these types of properties? I really don’t get why this comic exists.


I am very interested in this.

I do wonder what the new coloring will look like. Will it just be redone to match the original flat coloring originally created for the old newsprint stories, or will it something like painted water colors?

Nice to see this finally receive the Absolute treatment. I would love to have all of the early Vertigo books in the Absolute format: Morrison’s Animal Man, Morrison’s Doom Patrol (with Doom Force and Flex Mentallo #1-4), Hellblazer #1-84 (covering the Ennis/Delano runs), and Shade #1-50, in addition to Sandman and Moore’s Swamp Thing.


I hope it’s something like the Sandman recolouring - broadly similar, but a bit more subtle and sophisticated where it’s deemed necessary.

As I said, I’m normally in favour of sticking as close as possible to the originals, but there are cases like Sandman and Miracleman where the original colouring has been sub-par and the new jobs have been an improvement overall (even if you can quibble over some specific choices). I’m hoping for the same here.


Tatjana Wood’s colors were top-notch for their time, though limited by the nature of the book being printed in the old letterpress process.

But with all of the detail in Bissette and Totleben’s art, modern effects like shading, color grading, and moree available colors and detail could make the art look incredible.


I just hope they have decent copies of the art to remaster the book from in the first place. It’ll show if the linework reproduction is dodgy, especially at Absolute size.


Super glad you guys brought this up – I thought I remembered we were getting a new Swamp Thing reprint but couldn’t remember where I saw it and oculdn’t track it down again.


About fifteen or so years ago they reprinted about half of the run in b&w as Essential Swamp Thing and the art looked fantastic.


So Ninjak OHC2, it’s going to take a while to read, why?

Well, I have Unbeatable Squirrel Girl OHC2 and OHC3 and the Ninjak volume is nearly the size of both of them together! It’s a hefty tome.

Also now have Abe Sapien: Dark & Terrible 2, which goes very neatly with the other Mignolaverse hardbacks.


In the 1980s in the UK Titan books started printing collections before Marvel and DC did in the US (they actually pioneered trade collections with Judge Dredd books). One of those was Swamp Thing and I think purely for cost/affordability reasons they did it in black and white. A lot of people preferred them because in those days the colouring was quite muddy and covered up some of the intricate linework that Bissette and Totleben used.


The coloring didn’t do the artwork any favors, but it was more a matter of the letterpress printing. And in the 80s, I think some costs were cut on the printing because a lot of comics from the mid-80s looked bad.

A lot of my Uncanny X-Men from the Silvestri era and X-Factor from the Simonson era looked awful, with the black linework barely showing up on some pages, and the colors looking muddy and off most of the time.

The few Alan Moore Swamp Thing comics that I do own are nearly unreadable because the ink has bled through the paper.


Yeah agreed, it is a criticism of the paper quality rather than the skills of the colourists. They had to compensate for the printing methods and paper which is why it often looks garish when reprinted with modern standards.

I bought a John Byrne Alpha Flight collection (pretty much the same period) a decade or so back that was done on glossy paper and the four colour dots unaltered and it looked awful when the original issues looked fine.


Yes, and there’s a similar problem with digital versions of old comics - which also have the problem that everything looks very bright, sometimes eye-wateringly so.

It’s one of the conundrums with modern reprints of old comics - do you keep the original colouring and have it look far ‘louder’ and more garish on modern paper (or a screen), or do you alter it to try and recreate the feel of the originals (but in doing so impose your own artistic judgements on it)?

Cory Sedlmeier and his team on the Marvel Masterworks line are usually pretty good at striking the right balance (he also oversaw the Miracleman recolouring) but even then I don’t agree with every decision they make, and the colours still look bolder than they would have in the original comics.

And then there’s the choice of paper thickness (and whether you go for a matte finish or some level of glossiness) that all affect the look of a book.

I liked the approach taken with the four Fourth World hardcovers that DC put out around a decade ago - they used the same bold colours as the originals but printed it on a rougher paper stock that more closely approximated the original comics, so it absorbed the colour and dulled it quite effectively. But then you had a lot of fans complaining about the perceived inferior paper quality.

You often can’t please everyone with these things.


This is a good close-up comparison that shows the different levels of colour remastering carried out for Walt Simonson’s Thor when it was reprinted in the ‘Visionaries’ TPB and later in omnibus. You can see varying levels of the ‘dot’ issue Gar mentioned, which demonstrates why sometimes a recolour is pretty essential.


(My personal preference there would have been something else entirely - colouring that matched the lighting and other colour choices of the first two panels but with the quality and consistency of the third - thus proving that fans really are impossible to please sometimes!)


Proof that the corrected Fourth World omnibuses are now in the wild:


I wonder if Amazon is still sending @Tom_Punk uncorrected copies just to fuck with him.


The “Investigation” was supposed to end last night.

Going to get back into the wild again.


They’ve got to do something with all their unsold/ returned copies of the first edition.