Comics I’m Picking Up the Week of June 12, 2019

Here are the books I’m looking forward to seeing at my local comic store the week of June 12, 2019.

Jughead’s Time Police

Publisher: Archie Comics
Words/Story: Sina Grace
Art/Colors: Derek Charm

“When Jughead messes up his Riverdale Annual Bake-Off pie recipe so terribly, he is disqualified and banned from all future Bake-Offs! Jug goes to unthinkable lengths to fix his error: time travel! Even Riverdale’s most erudite teenager can’t manage the delicate dance of going back in time, and poor Juggie lands himself in an epic battle to keep the time stream intact!”

Category: Tried and True Creators

Why I’m Excited: I discovered Sina Grace when he took up the cause of giving Bobby Drake (around since the ’60s but never allowed to have a personal story) a character beyond class jokester. I really enjoyed the Iceman series and his later work with the character. It’s been said that the character Archie character is asexual (in contrast to the Riverdale version, who’s in love with Betty Cooper) and I can’t think of a better voice to put behind the adventures of the most beloved cheeseburger fiend in comics. Dere Charm has been drawing Jug since 2016 so I know he’s in good hands, and knowing that Squirrel Girl is closing out its run in November so I’m glad he has work lined up.

Jughead's Time Police #1 cover

Archie Comics

John Carpenter’s Tales of Science Fiction: Surviving Nuclear Attack

Publisher: Storm King Productions
Words/Story: Joe Harris
Art/Colors: Cat Staggs

“As the Cold War rose in the 1950s, military hero, Captain George Kutter and his family trained to be legacy survivors in the event of an atomic exchange with the Soviet Union. Prepared to wait out the aftermath of nuclear war, they were subjected to numerous simulations, scenarios, and stresses in hopes of helping salvage something of their family, their country, and humanity from the ashes of a conflict with the Russians that never happened. But when a group of lost hunting buddies stumble upon a seemingly abandoned fallout shelter in the present-day Pennsylvania wilderness, they’ll uncover secrets best left buried. What was the nature of the secret Archonite initiative? What lengths did the United States go to in order to prepare for all-out war and its aftermath? What did the Kutter family endure in preparation for their duty? And if World War III never broke out . . . why are they still down there?”

Category: Tried and True Creators

Why I’m Excited: I fell in love with Cat Staggs’ art with the Crosswinds story she illustrated for Gail Simone. Her method combines the best of realism and impressionism. I have the impression that her panels could be rotoscoped giving the the level of definition when needed to highlight facial expression that could be actors we love from the pages of People but also letting a blur or splash of color to do the work of inciting feeling where the atmosphere of a scene is what matters. Harris’s work on this story is a great fit for the work he’s done previously with the X-Files franchise, a dash of horror, a dash of historical realism and government conspiracy stirring the pot.

Cover of John Carpenter's Tales of Science Fiction: Surviving Nuclear Attack

Storm King Productions

Sonata

Publisher: Image Comics
Words/Story: David Hine and Brian Haberlin
Art/Colors: Brian Haberlin and Geirrod Van Dyke

“[T]wo cultures clash on a planet they each believe is their Promised Land. The Rans are a peace-loving people, but the Tayans are a race of warriors who seek to colonize and control. The mysterious Sleeping Giants also call this place home, though no one knows if they’re monsters or the gods of legend. And amidst all this, a young woman named Sonata is willing to break all the rules to find her place in this world—and she’s not about to let sleeping gods lie.”

Category: Return to a Beloved World

Why I’m Excited: Is Pandora truly Pandora by another name? While visually stunning, James Camerons’s Avatar never really worked for me on an emotional level—just thought of FernGully with a few more supercomputers at its disposal. Here’s hoping this new comic puts a more interesting spin on the tropes in the solicit. Brian Haberlin’s art will bring a more menacing tone than the two progenitors I mentioned. Fingers crossed it doesn’t end with everybody sitting around a fire singing songs in harmony.

Cover of Sonata

Image Comics

Angola Janga: Kingdom of Runaway Slaves

Publisher: Fantagraphics Books
Words/Story: Marcelo D’Salete
Art/Colors: Marcelo D’Salete

“Founded in late sixteenth-century Brazil, Angola Janga was a beacon of freedom. For over a hundred years, this community of runaway slaves thrived in fierce opposition to the Dutch and Portuguese colonial powers. In the stunning follow-up to his critically acclaimed graphic novel debut, Run for It, D’Salete brings the history of this precarious kingdom to life—the painful stories of fugitives, the brutal raids by colonial forces, and the tense power struggles among its inhabitants. At turns empowering and heartbreaking, Angola Janga is a stark reminder that the fight for justice is an eternal battle.”

Category: Support Emerging Creators

Why I’m Excited: A few months ago I went looking for reviews of Ye; I fell into a rabbit hole and learned a lot about the vibrant comics scene in Brazil. It’s a bummer that American creators haven’t tackled this aspect of history (please correct me if you know of a fictional narrative about this era) but Brazil seems to be grappling with its radicalization in a much more direct way than we are. I look forward to seeing whether this might make it to a school library or classroom in the near future.

Cover of Angola Janga: Kingdom of Runaway Slaves

Fantagraphics Books

Also out this week: A new edition of the groundbreaking graphic novel Moonshadow (originally published as 12 chapters by Marvel’s Epic imprint between 1985 and 1987), an inspiration on Vertigo’s Sandman; and a print edition of web comic The Grave, originally released over the course of 2014 as one panel a day.

See you at the racks!

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