Major Spoilers Staff Picks for July 18, 2012

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Looking for something to read this week?  The Major Spoilers Staff runs down their picks for the week.

ALABASTER: WOLVES #4
Writer: Caitlín R. Kiernan
Artist: Steve Lieber
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Cover Price: $3.50
SOLICITATION: In a scant few days, Maisie has gone from werewolf to ghost, and from Dancy’s would-be murderer to her erstwhile ally. Now, finally, Dancy’s enigmatic guide tells her story—and Dancy gets her first real glimpse into the evil infesting the town.

RODRIGO: Despite a few head scratching moments I’m still on board with this book and so should you.

BEFORE WATCHMEN: SILK SPECTRE #2
Writer: Darwyn Cooke, Amanda Conner
Artist: Amanda Conner
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: ‘I’ve just come to a horrible realization… My mom would be really proud of me right now.’ Plus, a new CRIMSON CORSAIR backup feature from writer LEN WEIN and artist JOHN HIGGINS! This issue is also offered as a combo pack edition with a redemption code for a digital download of the issue.

JIMMY: This has been my favorite title so far of the Before Watchmen series; the combination of Darwyn Cooke’s writing and Amanda Conner’s art is incredible. The way Conner played with the 9-panel grid in issue #1 was unbelievable, and I can’t wait to see how her art shines in this issue.

CAPTAIN MARVEL #1
Writer: Kelly Sue DeConnick
Artist: Dexter Soy
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: This July, take flight as Marvel is pleased to present your first look at Captain Marvel #1! From the creative team of fan-favorite writer Kelly Sue DeConnick and rising star artist Dexter Soy, Carol Danvers suits up to tackle a threat only she can handle. Earth’s Mightiest Hero has a new name, a new mission and all the power she needs to make her life a living hell. With Captain America guest starring, and covers by Ed McGuinness & Adi Granov – no fan can miss this explosive new ongoing that will send shockwaves throughout the Marvel Universe. So what are you waiting for? Go tell your local retailer to hold you a copy – that’s an order! Captain Marvel #1 flies into comic shops everywhere, the Marvel Comics app and the Marvel Digital Comics Shop this July.

GEORGE: I’ve always been a sucker for Carol Danvers. Her solo series haven’t been entirely successful, but this one has potential. The art and writing in the previews looks good. Writer Kelly Sue DeConnick absolutely killed it on her Osborn miniseries, and I’m excited to see what she can do with an ongoing series. Plus it’s at the $2.99 price point, which is appreciated.

CATWOMAN #11
Writer: Judd Winick
Artist: Guillem March
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price $2.99
SOLICITATION: On the trail of DOLLHOUSE! CATWOMAN and her new partner, SPARK, take their relationship to a very intimate level! How will this affect Catwoman’s secret partnership with DETECTIVE ALVAREZ?

JIMMY: If you haven’t heard the news, Judd Winick is going to be off Catwoman in the near future, with the title going to Ann Nocenti, the writer most recently known for making Green Arrow even more incomprehensible than it was under J.T. Krul. Unfortunately, that means I’m going to be dropping this title from my pull list, but in the meantime I’m going to appreciate every Winick-written issue until they’re gone.

DAREDEVIL #15
Writer: Mark Waid
Artist: Chris Samnee
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: Daredevil suffers his greatest loss ever — and that’s just the start of the story!
. Alone and helpless, Daredevil is hunted in Latveria!
. Meanwhile the law firm of Nelson & Murdock undergoes a drastic change!

ZACH: As much as I was disappointed with the turn out of the three-way crossover during The Omega Effect, the tales spinning off from it in Daredevil have been quite good. The final two pages depicting Matt’s attempt at escape were heartbreaking on a level I have rarely felt reading comics. Only more goodness came come from the team up between Waid and Samnee.

HERC TP COMPLETE SERIES BY PAK AND LENTE
Writer: Greg Pak
Artist: Neil Edwards, Chris Stevens
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $29.99
SOLICITATION: A bold new era for the Lion of Olympus! Hercules is back, minus his powers – but when mythic evil stalks the streets, what is the son of Zeus to do? He takes 3000 years of combat experience, raids Ares’ armory for the most fearsome weapons of legend, and gets medieval! But what chance does a mere mortal have against FEAR ITSELF’s army of monsters and super villains? Plus: when Spider-Island erupts, Hercules finds himself ‘infested’ with spider-powers of his own. Can you handle … the Incredible Spider-Herc?! Then: Zeus decides to move in with his wayward son after an angry Hera de-powers him. Herc teams up with the assassin Elektra to take on some powerful foes … but will Zeus muck everything up? You bet he will.

ROB: The short-lived Herc series was quite fun while it was going, and though it did get bogged down a bit in crossover madness for awhile (tha’s probably where it failed) Pak and Lente still made a fun book. If you didn’t get a hold of these when they were around the first time, do yourself a favor and grab this as Herc was a fun read.

INFERNAL MAN-THING #2
Writer: Steve Gerber
Artist: Kevin Nowlan
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: • Steve Gerber’s last untold MAN-THING epic continues!!!

• Also featuring part two of the classic “Song Cry of a Dead Man”

RODRIGO: Ok, after all the hullaballoo of issue #1 I’m actually interested. I want to read this untold story.

JUDGE DREDD COMP CASE FILES TP (S&S ED) VOL 05
Writer: John Wagner, Alan Grant
Artist: Various
Publisher: 2000AD
Cover Price: $19.99
SOLICITATION: Judge Dredd rides into action in this fifth volume collecting together some of his most exciting cases. Arch-nemesis Judge Death rises from the grave once again in Judge Death Lives, citizen is pitted against citizen in Block Mania and the apocalypse comes to Mega-City One in the all-time classic epic, The Apocalypse War.

GEORGE: I imagine this is for a reprint, as I think this trade’s been out for a month or so. But I am super excited by the buzz from ComicCon regarding the new Judge Dredd movie, and I want to dig into the character’s history in preparation. Volume 5 promises some of Dredd’s best adventures, including The Apocalypse War and Block Mania. I think this is where I’ll start.

RADIOACTIVE MAN HC VOL 01 RADIOACTIVE REPOSITORY
Writer: Matt Groening
Artist: Various
Publisher: Bongo Comics
Cover Price: $25.99
SOLICITATION: Up and atom! Bart Simpson’s favorite comic hero, Radioactive Man, is here to save the day for superhero fans both old and new! Ever since his historic comic book debut in 1952 (in The Simpsons universe). Radioactive Man (otherwise known as layabout playboy Claude Kane III) and his faithful sidekick Fallout Boy (aka former juvenile delinquent Rod Runtledge) have been making Zenith City safe from insidious evil-doers such as Dr. Crab, Magmo the Lava Man, Hypno-Head, Larva Girl, Larceny Lass, and Richard Milhous Nixon, to name but a few. For decades, fans have clamored for a deluxe collection of Radioactive Man tales. Now, at last, the Atomic Avenger receives the treatment he deserves in this comprehensive and historic archival edition of his greatest adventures!

MATTHEW: Years ago, when Bongo Comics was serializing the adventures of the Simpsons, they also launched a limited series featuring Bart Simpson’s favorite superhero, Radioactive Man. I loved that series, and was disappointed when I began losing track of his various Simpsons appearances throughout the ensuing years. Now, I have this! Up and Atom!!!

SAGA #5
Writer: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist: Biona Staples
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: The smash hit ongoing series from Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples continues, as Prince Robot IV’s hunt for Hazel and her parents takes a deadly turn.

MATTHEW: This one has been good since the beginning, and is only getting better as we go. If you enjoy Y: The Last Man, Star Wars, or anything awesome, you need to read this book…

ROB: Fantasy Space Opera. Saga has been a crazy ride with stunning visuals, amazing moments, and a story that keeps me wanting more. Vaughn is giving us yet another great epic that everyone should want to get in on ASAP. If you haven’t been reading Saga, get to it, the book is more than worth it. If you have, pat yourself on the back for finding an amazing read.

ZACH: If you are reading the Major Spoilers Staff Picks every week and still haven’t read at least one issue of Saga, I take it as a personal offense. Please direct all reasons for not picking it up towards the comment section so I can tell you why it isn’t a valid excuse.

SECRET HISTORY OF D.B. COOPER #5
Writer: Brian Churilla
Artist: Brian Churilla
Publisher: Oni Press
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: C.I.A. assassin Dan Cooper is on the run from his government masters in our world, but in the psychic plane of “The Glut,” he still has only one objective–to find his missing daughter! The startling story of the most mysterious airline hijacker in U.S. history concludes in this amazing issue!

ZACH: It all ends here. Issue five is the final installment in the killer thrill ride that has been D.B. Cooper. I wish this series could continue on, but I know Brian Churrila will deliver a satisfying conclusion to my favorite new series of the year. This will be the first series I buy all the single issues and then the trade.

STAR TREK TNG DOCTOR WHO ASSIMILATION #3
Writer: David Tipton
Artist: J.K. Woodward
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: The two greatest science-fiction properties of all time cross over for the first time in history, in STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION/DOCTOR WHO: ASSIMILATION2! The true horror of the Borg-Cybermen alliance has been revealed, but what course of action will Captain Picard and the Doctor agree upon? And will the Doctor’s recently resurfaced memories shed new night on the dilemma?

MATTHEW: They haven’t yet overwhelmed the novelty of the crossover, and there is promise of Kirk and the Fourth Doctor interacting, so I’m in for the haul. The first and second issues were well done from both Next Gen and Doctor Who perspectives, and the art is intriguing, if a bit unusual. Now, if I can get Commander Riker and the Fifth Doctor working together, this’ll go down in personal continuity history.

STEPHEN: Though I still have mixed feelings on the art, I’m still on board for the story that David Tipton is spinning. Will we get to see Kirk and Four meet? The chance to see the hairpiece and the scarf bicker is just too tempting to pass up.

UNCANNY X-MEN #16 AVX
Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Daniel Acuna
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: • We can’t say much or we spoil the event of the summer!
• The X-Men move against the forces of SINISTER!

GEORGE: Kieron Gillen has been doing great work on Uncanny X-Men from the start. The first big bad his Extinction Team faced was a wonderfully redone Mr. Sinister, and Gillen has brought him back with a vengeance. Gillen is doing a good job of incorporating the AvX mega-crossover into his ongoing storylines, so don’t let that bother you if you aren’t following along. Also, Greg Land isn’t doing art on this issue. Hooray!

WONDER WOMAN #11
Writer: Brian Azzarello
Artist: Cliff Chiang
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: A new story begins as APOLLO makes his play for ZEUS’S throne – and WONDER WOMAN is the last obstacle in his way! As ZOLA goes into labor, a hideous secret is revealed!

JIMMY: Despite my love for Azzarello’s take on Wonder Woman, I got a bit confused in the most recent arc with Hades; I think I may have missed an issue somewhere. We’re starting a new arc now though, and I’m going to officially put Wonder Woman on my pull list so I don’t miss anything. Another bonus: Apparently this issue is going to be drawn by Cliff Chiang instead of Tony Akins!

X-FACTOR #240
Writer: Peter David
Artist: Neil Edwards, Craig Yeung, Rick Ketcham
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: “RUN LAYLA RUN”

• A one-off issue featuring Layla Miller racing the clock.

RODRIGO: Ok, so last time I just used this book to make a joke, but this time I’m totally going to read it. I mean it actually has Franca Potente in it. Wait it doesn’t? Aw, RIPOFF!

X-MEN #32
Writer: Warren Ellis
Artist: Phil Jimenez
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: The X-Men have fought towering, mutant-slaying robot Sentinels before. But never one quite like this. Never a Sentinel made of meat and bone, wearing the skin of one of their own deceased teammates, every technological aspect given a biological solution. And as the X-Men fight for their lives, they’re left to wonder: What could this monstrosity have to do with THE BROOD?

ROB: So everything X-Men has been all AvX this and Phoenix Five that as of late, except for this book. X-Men has been a good read and isn’t involved in all of the extra crazy that’s been happening in the rest of the Marvel U as of late. With a mostly decent team of characters that play well into what the X-Men should be this a book worth getting if you want your mutants and nothing else.

ROBOT OVERLORD: Overall, it is a light week for comic books, but your favorite meat bags have found sixteen titles to keep you preoccupied until next week.