Major Spoilers Staff Picks for January 30, 2013

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As new comic book day approaches, the question that will haunt you is, “What do I pick up this week?” Fortunately, you can keep The Spectre at bay by taking a gander at books the Major Spoilers Staff is looking forward to this week.

AdventureTime_12_preview_Page_03ADVENTURE TIME #12
Writer: Ryan North
Artist: Shelli Paroline
Publisher: BOOM! Studios (kaboom! imprint)
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: THE HOTTEST ALL-AGES COMIC CELEBRATES ITS ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY!

BMO’s sick, but it’s not just any virus–it’s a magical virus! And now, Finn and Jake have to seek out a sorta-no-good-very-bad wizard to set things right!

JIMMY: I absolutely love Adventure Time, and it was these comics that turned me on to the show. These comics are just as zany as the show, and are more consistent. Ryan North (of Dinosaur Comics fame) is absolutely PERFECT for writing these characters, and Shelli Paroline does a great job on the art duties. If you’ve ever considered watching the show or wondered what it was all about, BOOM! Studios’ Adventure Time series is an absolutely perfect place to start!

ALLSW_Cv16ALL-STAR WESTERN #16
Written by JUSTIN GRAY and JIMMY PALMIOTTI
Art by MORITAT
Backup story art by PHIL WINSLADE
Cover by WALTER SIMONSON
• 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T+
SOLICITATION:
• Hex is being driven mad as he recuperates at Dr. Arkham’s house, where he meets more of the Arkham family than anyone would ever want to — until an uninvited guest drops by, and it’s an all-out brawl as Hex tries to take Hyde out and get the Black Diamond!
• And in the backup story, Tomahawk leads a gathering of Native American tribes in a final stand to protect their homeland.

THOMAS: All-Star Western is one of my top three books of the New 52. Its had a great amount of gunslinging action with a smattering of the supernatural. This arc’s focus on Mr. Hyde has been fun, and the backup story with Tomahawk facing off against the British and Americans in the late 1780′s has been pretty nice as well (and a bit reminiscient of Assassin’s Creed 3). A book that has consistent quality such as this needs to be celebrated more often.

AQM_Cv16AQUAMAN #16
Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Paul Pelletier
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION:
• “THRONE OF ATLANTIS” continues!
• Continuing from this month’s JUSTICE LEAGUE #16!
•Torn between Ocean Master and the League in this penultimate chapter of “Throne of Atlantis, Aquaman is pushed toward an impossible choice!
• The monstrous Trench are back — and they’re hungry!

ROB: Throne of Atlantis has been pretty good, moving a bit faster than expected, but that’s probably a good thing here. Aquaman is also one of the stronger individual titles DC has right now so it makes sense that this would be at the top of my pile this week.

avengers4AVENGERS #4
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Adam Kubert
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: “THE DEATH AND RESURRECTION OF MAJOR TITANS”
• The Secret Origin of Hyperion.
• The Legacy of the Garden unfolds in the Savage Land.
• “We’ll have to field test our theories here. NOW.” –Dr. Deeds

MATTHEW: Uncanny Avengers was clearly designed to be the flagship book of the Avengers franchise during Marvel NOW!, but the story is so ludicrous and self-important that I can’t take it even remotely seriously. This book, on the other hand, has given me intriguing unanswered questions, interesting characters and the much-overdue recruitment of Shang-Chi, Master Of Kung-Fu. The first three issues have been fun reads (unlike the goofiness of Avengers and the dull pontificating of New Avengers) and I’m hoping that they play down Captain America and the A-Squad for a bit to give the new kids some time to play. Either way, this one is still on my must-read list…

BMTDK_Cv16BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT #16
Writer: Gregg Hurwitz
Artist: Ethan Van Sciver
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price $2.99
SOLICITATION: Welcome new series artist Ethan Van Sciver!
Do you dare journey into the twisted world of the Mad Hatter?
Batman has discovered a trail of bodies but no leads as he realizes that this is unlike any Mad Hatter case he’s seen before.

JIMMY: Gregg Hurwitz came out of the gates guns-a-blazin’ (or pencils-a-writin’?) in The New 52 with his Penguin-focused series Pride and Prejudice, and it seems he’s continuing his strategy of focusing on Batman’s rogue’s gallery and really trying to get in their heads. I enjoyed his Scarecrow arc that preceded this one on The Dark Knight, but it didn’t have the same emotional resonance that Pride and Prejudice did. I’m incredibly excited to see that Hurwitz’s next villain-spotlight is the Mad Hatter–I actually sort of broke the news that Hatter would be the villain in my interview of him for Major Spoilers a while back–and I can’t wait to see Ethan Van Sciver’s art on this title!

Dollar Bill_coverBEFORE WATCHMEN DOLLAR BILL #1
Writer: Len Wein
Artist: Steve Rude
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: “Are you kidding? I’m only an actor, not a real crime-fighter.”

CHRIS: I’m not the biggest fan of Watchmen (I know, I should be ashamed) so it doesn’t surprise me that I don’t remember the character Dollar Bill at all. Luckily, DC wants to help me with my ignorance and give me some Steve Rude artwork. Intriguing, and proves that I should go back and reread Watchmen soon.

NOV120350smallDOCTOR WHO: PRISONERS OF TIME #1
Writers: Scott and David Tipton
Artist: Simon Fraser
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: November 23, 1963: A day that changed the world forever. That day saw the broadcast debut of Doctor Who, which was to become the longest-running science-fiction series on television. And now 50 years later, we pay tribute to one of the greatest pop-culture heroes of all time with this special series, which tells an epic adventure featuring all 11 incarnations of the intrepid traveller through time and space known simply as… the Doctor.

MATTHEW: I admit it: I’m a sucker for a multi-Doctor story. This book promises to bring together (or at least work with) all eleven incarnations of the Time Lord called The Doctor, in a story for the 50th Anniversary. Given the lack of Christopher Eccleston and the Actor Existence Failure of Hartnell, Troughton and Pertwee, this may be the closest thing I’ll get to the “Eleven Doctors” story I kind of hoped would come for the anniversary…

pickoftheweekhawkeye07HAWKEYE #7
Writer: Matt Fraction
Artist: David Aja
Publisher: Marvel
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION:
Cherry’s got a gun. And she looks good in it.
Hawkeye gets distracted. Just like you are right now.

CHRIS: This is the best book Marvel has on the stands. Period. Everything about it is great. The writing, the art, the cover price ($2.99 for a Marvel book? Almost unheard of) all come together for a perfect package. Every story is either one or two parts, making it incredibly new reader friendly. If you’re not reading this, I feel bad for you ‘cause you’re missing out on some wonderful comics.

GEORGE: Hell of a cover, isn’t it? Hawkeye is pure pulp fun, month in and out. I haven’t read a disappointing issue yet.

ROB: Hey, isn’t that the girl from issue three? Fraction has done a great deal of things that I have enjoyed, and his take on Hawkguy here is some of the best comics work coming out today. Everyone else has been raving about it too, so we can’t all be wrong. Give Hawkeye a read and enjoy.

STEPHEN: Hey, I like Hawkeye just as much as the next guy. It’s a clever premise with interesting characters, and fantastic art. Win/win/win! #Winning

ZACH: Matt Fraction’s tales of Clint Barton are what had me start looking into other books in the Marvle-verse and I haven’t regretted that yet. This issue is certain to be special to Fraction, who lives on the East Coast, because it is filled with two tales of Clint and Kate dealing with the aftermath of a hurricane, much like he and other creators had to go through after Sandy.

hellboyHELLBOY IN HELL #1 (2nd Printing)
Writer: Mike Mignola
Artist: Mike Mignola
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: After saving the world in The Storm and The Fury, but sacrificing himself and Great Britain, Hellboy is dead, cast into Hell, where he finds many familiar faces, and a throne that awaits him.
Mike Mignola returns to draw Hellboy’s ongoing story for the first time since Conqueror Worm. It’s a story only Mignola could tell, as more of Hellboy’s secrets are at last revealed, in the most bizarre depiction of Hell you’ve ever seen.
* Mike Mignola writes and draws the next phase of Hellboy’s story.
* Dark Horse horror gets under your skin!

RODRIGO: I usually wait to read Heckboy in the trades, but since they’re going through all the trouble of a second printing I might just pick this up. Can’t go wrong with hellboy.

INJUSTICE_1INJUSTICE: GODS AMONG US #1
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Jheremy Raapack
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION:
• Based on DC’s latest highly anticipated video game from the makers of Mortal Kombat!
• The first time in print for these digital-first stories.
• This prequel explains the events leading up to the start of this epic game!

ELIJAH: I actually already read this issue (since its already come out digitally) and it is really great. You will get the full review next Saturday, but trust me on this one, its worth picking up.

invincible100INVINCIBLE #100
Writer: Robert Kirkman
Artist: Ryan Ottley
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: 10th ANNIVERSARY LANDMARK 100th ISSUE SPECTACULAR!

THE DEATH OF EVERYONE: CONCLUSION!

It’s all been building to this. Mark Grayson’s entire life as a superhero, all he’s learned, all he’s endured, it’s all been leading to this one moment. Will he become the hero he was meant to or will he choose… a DIFFERENT path?

The aftermath of this EXTRA-SIZED issue will shock you.

JIMMY: I have been anticipating this book for what seems like almost a year now, but more realistically is probably 8 months or so–whenever they started the DEATH OF EVERYONE teasers. Invincible is usually my favorite superhero comic each month, and I’m really excited to see what Robert Kirkman does to the character(s) I’ve fallen in love with. And it’s an oversized issue–the more Invincible, the better!

MATTHEW: I’m a little bit leery of this one, as I worry that it’s nothing more than a giant sales ploy to move issues. Granted, it certainly IS that, but I’m hoping that Mark’s story (which has been a bit flabby and meandering of late) gets a shot in the arm and goes off to do something super-awessome post-death. I don’t think for a moment that they’re going to kill Mark, but I think that the death of Invincible is a very real possibility. Also, if they kill Allen the Alien, Kirkman is DEAD TO ME!

STEPHEN: Wait! Just Wait! Everyone is gonna die? Why did I see Atom Eve on the cover of issue #101? Oh… I get it.. marketing… gotcha. I’m still picking this book up, only because I like seeing bloody Ryan Ottley art.

nowhereNOWHERE MEN #3
Writer: Eric Stephenson
Artist: Nate Bellgarde & Jordie Bellaire
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: Some disasters are bigger than others.

GEORGE: I was somewhat reserved in my review of the first issue of this series, but the second issue improved my opinion. This story of a Beatles-esque quartet of super scientists is going someplace weird and I have no idea where that is. Nowhere Men has been keeping me entertained so far – let’s see if #3 can cement my interest.

superiorspiderman2SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #2
Writer: Dan Slott
Artist: Ryan Stegman
Publisher: Marvel
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION:
The All-Now Superior Spider-Man battles All-New Sinister Six!
PLUS: Spider-Man and Mary Jane…REUNITED!
PLUS: Slott and Stegman… REUNITED!

GEORGE: The criticism for this title has gotten pretty heated in some corners, but I’m digging what Dan Slott is selling. As a lifelong fan of Peter Parker, I have no complaints. I’m faintly horrified by the idea of what Superior Spider-Man has in store for Mary Jane, but I bet Slott can pull it off.

ROB: The end of last issue has been a bit of a stir. Though not unexpected the general assumption was that it would take a little while longer at least. But right now, I’m going to trust in Slott. The man hasn’t steered me wrong yet, and I really don’t expect him to any time soon.

STEPHEN: Uh-Oh! Here’s hoping the cover isn’t indicative of what we’ll see on the inside… because… ewww. Still, I want to see how Dan Slott will twist the story next.

ZACH: Did Dan Slott tip his hat a little too early? Eh, possibly but I have faith in him to still spin an amazing tale. Definitely worth picking up even it’s just so you stay in the know with your comic loving friends.