Major Spoilers Staff Picks for July 25, 2012

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Looking for something to read this week, but don’t know where to start?  Major Spoilers has you covered with a number of recommendations for books arriving in stores this week.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #690
Writer: Dan Slott
Penciller: Giuseppe Camuncol
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: There might be more than one Lizard now…and Spider-Man might notice– if he wasn’t busy trying to save everyone from a crazed Morbius! Also in this issue: new developments for The Kingpin, Madame Web, Horizon Labs, and the Hobgoblin!

ROB: While this is obviously stands as a cross-promotion synergistic idea for the movie getting the Lizard involved, it still works. Dan Slott managed to set all of this up well in advance on top of providing us with a good look at what the Lizard has become now. If you have any inkling towards Spider-Man, pick this title up as Slott does an amazing job of getting us a story worth reading.

STEPHEN: Synergy! Gotta love it… or maybe not. Regardless, Dan Slott hasn’t let me down yet, with the emphasis being on yet, so I’m going to pick Amazing Spider-Man up again this week.

AXE COP: PRESIDENT OF THE WORLD #1
Writer: Malachai Nicolle
Artist: Ethan Nicolle
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Cover Price:  $3.50
SOLICITATION: Axe Cop has been appointed president of the whole world! But what will Axe Cop and his friends do in a world with no bad guys? Look to defeat the bad guys from outer space, of course! Written by 8-year-old Malachai Nicolle and drawn by his 31-year-old brother Ethan Nicolle, Axe Cop is commander in chief of hilarious adventures as only a kid could imagine!
*Brand-new print-exclusive story—never seen before!
*Upon its debut as a webcomic in December of 2009, Axe Cop was instantly hailed as a one-of-a-kind hit!

MATTHEW: I love, love, LOVE the world of Axe-Cop, mixing the superhero, spy, and military genres through the lens that is the mind of an eight-year-old kid, with pathos, non-sequiturs and poop jokes all combining into a brilliant whole. The Nicolle brothers understand how to make a comic work, and have no problem making it fun, silly or pathetically sad (sometimes within the space of a single sentence.) If you’re not reading Axe Cop, WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU???

BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT #11
Writer: Gregg Hurwitz
Artist: David Finch
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: SCARECROW makes a bold move against BATMAN, using COMMISSIONER GORDON as bait! The terrifying pasts of both SCARECROW and BATMAN come back to haunt them.

JIMMY: With the addition of Gregg Hurwitz to the creative team of this book with issue #10, The Dark Knight has become absolutely incredible. I gave #10 a perfect five star review, and I don’t expect Hurwitz to let up any time soon. If you didn’t read #10, go pick up a copy and read it, and then read this issue!

BPRD HELL ON EARTH EXORCISM #2
Writer: Mike Mignola, Cameron Stewart
Artist: Cameron Stewart
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Price: $3.50
SOLICITATION: Field agent Ashley Strode attempts to purge a demon from a 100-year-old exorcist, utilizing a deadly rite that sends both of them into a spiritual hell.
*Owl demons!
*Featuring the origin of Ota Benga from B.P.R.D.: 1947.

ROB: After reading the first issue, I had a pressing need to see this story through as it hooked me that well. Seeing as this is the conclusion that shouldn’t be too hard. Go ahead and give Ashley a chance, she’s an interesting character, and pick up both this and the first issue if you haven’t yet. If you have, good on you cause you should be picking this up without me telling you to.

DEBRIS #1
Writer: Kurtis J Wiebe
Artist: Riley Rossmo
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.50
SOLICITATION: In the far future, humanity has doomed planet earth to rot and decay, covering her surface with garbage. Now, ancient spirits called the Colossals rise from the debris and attack the remaining survivors, forcing the human race to the brink of extinction. One warrior woman, Maya, sets out to find the last source of pure water to save the world before the monsters bring it all to an end.

RODRIGO: I’m pretty sure I JUST read a post apocalyptic book about giant monsters punishing humanity for their hubris. Then again, that one was pretty terrible, so I have high hopes for Debris #1. Also, quick aside, apart from signifying someone of Mayan descent, the word “maya” in Spanish can also be used to mean “mesh”. And now you know.

GOON #40
Writer: Eric Powell
Artist: Eric Powell
Publisher: Dark Horse
Cover Price: $3.50
SOLICITATION: Back in his teenage days when Prohibition was going on, Goon used to hot-rod moonshine past the law for fun and profit. That is, until he ran into a gang of gearhead rockabilly ghouls out for blood!

STEPHEN: A couple of years ago, Major Spoilerite Julian got me hooked on Eric Powell’s The Goon, and I haven’t looked back since. Compelling characters, beautiful art, and a vibe very much in line with Hellboy. If you haven’t picked up Goon, do yourself a favor and grab a copy this week.

ZACH: The Goon is going monthly!! I have been awaiting this issue since it was announced way back in the spring. My excitement grew even more when Powell described this next large arc as a love song with more blood and murder, and I’m going to have to guess zombies also. With the Kickstarter on the way, it is shaping to be a great year for Goon.

KISS GREATEST HITS, VOLUME 1: THE MARVEL YEARS
Writers: Stan Lee, Ralph Macchio
Artists: John Buscema, John Romita Jr.
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $19.99
SOLICITATION: In 1977, Kiss was not only the biggest band in the world, they were the biggest comic-book stars around! For the first time ever, both classic Marvel Super Specials are collected in one in trade paperback, with story and art from Stan Lee, John Buscema, John Romita Jr., and more! Featuring an all-new cover recreation by Kiss: Avatars cover artist Nick Runge!

MATTHEW: The Marvel KISS Super-Specials, presented again for the first time in forever! These books are an utter scream, with Steve Gerber in his prime writing the adventures of four unusual youths who gain mighty powers: The Demon! The Starchild! Space Ace! The Catman! Fighting against Doctor Doom, the malaise of the 1970’s and probably Perry Como, the KISS Super-Specials are a really fun take on the characters the band plays, couched in a classic Marvel origin story. Get this book, and you’ll see the kind of comics that made me the man I am today!

MAD PRESENTS BATMAN #1
Writers: The Usual Gang of Idiots
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $5.99
SOLICITATION: MAD is at it again! We’re collecting our best – if that’s the right word – Batman parodies in one big package! It’s enough to drive you batty!

MATTHEW: Mad Magazine was once the bellwether for pop culture and the mockery thereof, and when *I* was a kid, if the Usual Gang of Idiots didn’t make fun of you, you didn’t MATTER. I’m hoping that this contains the wonderful “Batboy and Rubin,” but at the very least, I know we’ll see the parodies of the Tim Burton movies, which were an utter scream when Stephen and I were in college during the late Cretaceous Period.

RODRIGO: Well, it’s a little early for a holiday themed book, but oh well, I’ve always wanted to see Batman give people mad presents. He is rich after all.

MANHATTAN PROJECTS #5
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Nick Pitarra
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.50
SOLICITATION: ‘HORIZON’ A glimpse into the NEW FUTURE that the scientists of the Manhattan Projects have built on the foundation of their amazing break throughs. They’ve changed the world…is it for better or for worse? The thrilling FEEL GOOD, BAD SCIENCE series continues in THE MANHATTAN PROJECTS #5: HORIZON!

JIMMY: If you aren’t reading Manhattan Projects, you’re missing out. This is one of the most unusual titles I’ve come across in comics, and also one of the best. Hickman is writing a twisted tale of science gone wrong, and I’ve enjoyed Pitarra’s art more with every issue. Interestingly enough, every single issue so far would work reasonably well as a jumping on point, with brief character bios in the issue if you need them. That being said, if you jump on with this issue and enjoy it, I HIGHLY recommend you go back and read the previous ones as well.

STEPHEN: This is by far the best confusing comic you will ever read. It’s a mind trip, covered in whipped cream, smothered in taco sauce… yeah… it’s that awesome.

ZACH: Manhattan Projects has been a smorgasbord of crazy thus far and I love it. Any faults with each issue not connecting straight to the next have been pushed to the side for the sheer enjoyment of every read. The art on the inside has been phenomenal, but what has really stuck with me is each cover. The minimalistic approach is aesthetically pleasing but also leaves me with a creepy feeling.

PROPHET #27
Writer: Brandon Graham
Artist: Giannis Milonogiannis
Publisher: Image
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: A team sent by the Earth empire searches an alien world for a mysterious past.

GEORGE: Prophet continues to be one of the most entrancing comics on the stands, and is one of my most anticipated issues to read each month. Each issue is like exploring a new, different world. Prophet has a dream-like quality, and while serialized, tends not to be too continuity-heavy. So if you haven’t check out an issue, why not try this week’s?

RESIDENT ALIEN #3
Writer: Peter Hogan
Artist: Steve Parkhouse
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Cover Price: $3.50
SOLICITATION: Stranded and living undercover on our planet, the alien now known as Dr. Harry Vanderspeigle races to solve a small-town crime before federal agents close in on him and discover his secret! Biding his time in the sleepy town of Patience, USA, Dr. Harry has masked his existence with a form of alien telepathy. There are those who are resistant to his strange powers, however, and Harry’s time is running out. Someone very close to him is about to blow his cover! Acclaimed creators Peter Hogan (2000 AD, Tom Strong) and Steve Parkhouse (Milkman Murders, Doctor Who) deliver a truly unique sci-fi adventure tale with heart and humor!

RODRIGO: Hey Kids, New Resident Alien. Things are getting complicated for our space-protagonist. Especially with some Earth-antagonsists running around!

SUPER DINOSAUR #12
Writer: Robert Kirkman
Artist: Jason Howard
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: “ESCAPE FROM INNER-EARTH,” Part One
Derek Dynamo is a prisoner of The Exile – who has taken him deep into Inner-Earth! Super Dinosaur must assemble a team to track down The Exile and save his best friend, but along the way, he will learn the secret of Inner-Earth – something that could bring about the fall of human civilization!

ROB: I don’t know what more I could say to sell someone on this after reading the title. How could you not want to be involved in something called “Super Dinosaur”? Of course the fact that it has well thought characters, looks great, and is providing for a fun and interesting story should add to that desire as well. Now, stop listening to me ramble and buy this book.

UNDERWATER WELDER
Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Jeff Lemire
Publisher: Top Shelf
Cover Price: $19.95
SOLICITATION: As an underwater welder on an oilrig off the coast of Nova Scotia, Jack Joseph is used to the immense pressures of deep-sea work. Nothing, however, could prepare him for the pressures of impending fatherhood. As Jack dives deeper and deeper, he seems to pull further and further away from his young wife and their unborn son. Then one night, deep in the icy solitude of the ocean floor, something unexplainable happens. Jack has a mysterious and supernatural encounter that will change the course of his life forever.

ZACH: I was just recently introduced to Jeff Lemire’s work through an issue of Legends of the Dark Knight, which led me to Sweet Tooth, and now Underwater Welder. This graphic novel was released during SDCC digitally through comiXology and is now finding it’s way to the brick-and-mortar stores. I recently finished it and can say it is a fantastic read, with both the script and artwork excelling. I highly recommend Underwater Welder and will be looking to purchase a hard cover for myself in the future.

VENOM #21
Writer: Rick Remender & Cullen Bunn
Artist: Lan Medina
Publisher: Marvel
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: Toxin vs. Venom! Flash Thompson’s Last Stand! The Crime-Master Triumphant! – It’s the Savage Six Finale the comics world will be talking about!

GEORGE: The Savage Six storyline is the culmination of all Remender’s work on Venom to date, and it has not disappointed. Last week, I gave Venom high praise with a four and a half star review (http://majorspoilers.com/2012/07/19/review-venom-20/#more-158345) . And if the Dark Angel Saga in Uncanny X-Force is any indication, Remender is fully able to stick the landing on this one.

X-TREME X-MEN #1
Writer: Greg Pak
Artist: Stephen Segovia
Publisher: Marvel
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: Spinning out of the pages of ASTONISHING X-MEN! Travel the multiverse with Captain Howlett, Kid Nightcrawler, and Emmeline frost. Which X-Men will be lost between dimensions… with no guaranteed way home?

GEORGE: Marvel is reviving one of the early 2000s’ best concepts (Exiles), and sticking it with one of the early 2000s’ worst names. X-Treme X-Men is the newest X-Book, featuring the reality-hopping adventures of some alternate universe X-Men, and boy do I love alternate universes. In spite of the absolutely horrendous and woefully outdated title, I am cautiously optimistic about this book. I haven’t read any Greg Pak in awhile, but I loved the world-bulding he did back in the Planet Hulk days. I’m curious to see what he can do with a whole multiverse at play.

ROBOT OVERLORD: Fifteen books for you to pick up this week. What isn’t on the list that should be? You will have to let us know on that one.