Major Spoilers Staff Picks for February 27, 2013

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New comics are just a day away, and that means it is time for the staff at Major Spoilers to give you a rundown of the titles they are most looking forward to this week.

ALLSW_Cv17ALL STAR WESTERN #17
Writers: Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmioti
Artist: Moritat
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION:
• Gather round for a lesson in the terrible secret history of Gotham City with Jonah Hex!
• Hex and Doctor Arkham are at the forefront as a disease threatens to destroy part of the city. The patient survival rate is looking pretty grim…
• Plus: In the backup story, meet Jenny Freedom and the StormWatch of the 19th century!

ELIJAH: First off we do not have nearly enough western comics out and about right now, so really it should be your duty as a comic reader to pick this up. Second, the issues of All Star Western I have picked up have been excellent, and I will most likely be buying this one too. So why are you not reading the best western comic currently being printed?

amalasbladeAMALA’S BLADE #0
Writer: Steve Horton
Artist: Micael Dialynas
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: A behemoth pirate ship is captained by a pirate with a fat price on his head. And out for that head is Amala, Naamaron’s greatest swordfighter (according to Amala). The odds are against her, but that’s the fun . . . if only the ghosts of Amala’s past would shut up and get out of the way!

RODRIGO: IN! NEXT!

AQM_Cv17AQUAMAN #17
Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Paul Pelletier
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION:
• A startling epilogue to “THRONE OF ATLANTIS”!
• With the secrets of Atlantis revealed, Aquaman is confronted by a horrible myth from Atlantis’s past that’s connected to his own. Plus: Mera confronts a longtime enemy.

ROB: Coming off the Throne of Atlantis, I am really looking forward to what the new status quo for Aquaman is actually going to be. Geoff Johns has taken a character I only barely liked in passing and is making him to be one of the first titles I read each release.

AvengersArena_5_coverAVENGERS ARENA #5
Writer: Dennis Hopeless
Artist: Kev Walker
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: The Braddock Academy vs…themselves? Plus: What is up with Chase and Darkhawk?

CHRIS: Maybe it’s because I don’t have a strong attachment to the characters, but I’m really enjoying Avengers Arena. Sure, the idea isn’t original but the execution and storytelling are really well done. I don’t see how this title can last very long but for now, I’m enjoying the ride. Plus, it’s a $2.99 Marvel book!

CCON-10-4x6-FNL-WEBCOURTNEY CRUMRIN #10
Writer/Artist: Ted Naifeh
Publisher: Oni Press
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: Is it the end for Courtney? Courtney is now powerless to stop the council in their quest for ultimate power. She is also powerless to stop her classmates from bullying her, and powerless to awaken Uncle Aloysius from his coma. Of course, that’s never stopped her before…

RODRIGO: I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read of Courtney Crumrin, and the ongoing series looks as good as the arcs we’ve seen before. And yes, she still does not have a nose.

pickoftheweekdocwho2DOCTOR WHO PRISONERS OF TIME #2
Writers: David Tipton, Scott Tipton
Artist: Lee Sullivan
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: Our yearlong celebration of Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary continues! Oh my giddy aunt! It’s time to break out the recorders, as the Second Doctor takes the spotlight in this issue of a 12-part epic adventure featuring all 11 incarnations of the Doctor!

MATTHEW: The Second Doctor! Time is broken! The Fiftieth anniversary comic celebration rolls on into its second incarnation, and I’m hoping that IDW handles it as well as last issue’s tribute to the first Doctor. When I say run… RUN!

STEPHEN: I’m on board for this. The first issue was well done, and I love that the covers are going to connect to form a giant Francesco Francavilla image. Also, the Doctor… the second Doctor. I’m eager to get reacquainted with him again.

FeverRidge_01FEVER RIDGE: A TALE OF MACARTHUR’S JUNGLE WAR #1
Writer: Mike Heimos
Artist: Nick Runge
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: The South Pacific theatre of World War II is usually seen from the perspective of the Marines fighting from Guadalcanal to Okinawa. Unsung in WWII fiction is the story of the 6th Army’s 6th Infantry Division (“the Sightseein’ Sixth”) and their jungle commandoes, the Alamo Scouts, under the command of Gen. Walter Kreuger, the trusted and savvy lieutenant of “America’s Caesar,” Douglas MacArthur.
Fever Ridge explores unique events, perspectives, exotic locales and peoples that are different than any you have encountered in other WWII stories… and ultimately is the story of a secret that could have changed the War, and the world.

GEORGE: For whatever reason, I’ve been fiending for realistic war comics lately. And while it seems like Garth Ennis has the whole genre on lock, a new challenger has appeared! I believe this is Mike Heimos’s comic debut, and the story he’s pitching is an interesting one. Plus, it’s partially based on his grandfather’s own exploits during the war. The promos look like Heimos and Nick Runge are attempting something more heady than mere run-and-gun adventures in the jungle, so here’s hoping they pull it off.

FF_4_coverFF #4
Writer: Matt Fraction
Artist: Mike Allred
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: It’s Valentine’s Day at the Baxter Building! So why does that spell trouble for She-Hulk?

CHRIS: Matt Fraction is killing it at Marvel right now. FF is one of the most original comic ideas I’ve seen come from the major publishers. The whole thing is very surreal and Allred’s art is a perfect fit. The idea of a group of reluctant heroes brought together to do what was supposed to be a simple job but find themselves taking on more than they bargained for makes for some pretty fun stories. Again, $2.99 from Marvel!

fiveweapons1FIVE WEAPONS #1
Writer: Jimmie Robinson
Artist: Jimmie Robinson
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.50


SOLICITATION: 13-year-old Tyler finds himself in a specialized school where assassins send their kids for education and training in one of the five deadly weapons.  Tyler doesn’t have a weapon or any fighting skills, but he still plans to graduate by beating every weapon master in the school because he has a powerful ability that nobody can match: his razor-sharp mind! JIMMIE ROBINSON twists the insanity of BOMB QUEEN in a fun new series that will keep you guessing to the end.

ZACH: I have honestly read very little about what this new title from Image is suppose to be about but the ads in the back of other books have me interested. Those little pieces of art already made up my mind on purchasing this first issue.

GIJOE_New_01-CvrBG.I. JOE #1
Writer: Fred Van Lente
Artist: Steve Kurth
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: YO JOE! The truth is out: the world knows the G.I. JOE team is real. Now Duke leads his squad directly into the public eye, confronting COBRA on American soil! The best of the best just got better, as Fred Van Lente and Steve Kurth lead the charge and we roll out one new G.I. Joe title a month for the next three months!

GEORGE: I’m a fan of G.I. Joe, but I have not been keeping up with IDW’s take on the series. With Retaliation hitting theaters in a month or so, I figure I should get reacquainted. And hey, just in time, here’s a soft relaunch/jumping-on point! Synergy! Snark aside, Fred Van Lente is a talent and there’s no reason to think he can’t write a solid G.I. Joe series. Look for a Major Spoilers review later in the week.

Hawkeye_8_coverHAWKEYE #8
Writer: Matt Fraction
Artist: David Aja
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: Valentine’s Day with THE heartthrob of the Marvel Universe? This will be… confusing. Xoxo, Hawkeye

CHRIS: If you couldn’t tell, I’m really against paying $3.99 for a 32-page comic, especially from the major publishers. This book on the other hand I would gladly pay $3.99 for but Marvel wants to give it to me for $2.99! This is the best book Marvel puts out, hands down. Matt Fraction nails the character and tells non-superhero stories using a super-hero. Fantastic stuff. Oh, and David Aja’s art rocks too!

rsz_motrp_1MASK OF THE RED PANDA #1
Writer: Gregg Taylor
Artist: Dean Kotz
Publisher: Monkeybrain Comics
Cover Price: $0.99
SOLICITATION: Mask of the Red Panda is a three-part, pulse-pounding piece of pulp perfection written by Gregg Taylor, with Art by Dean Kotz and starring the Terrific Twosome of Toronto as you’ve never seen them before! A must for fans of the Red Panda radio shows and pulp novels, Mask of the Red Panda is also a perfect place for new fans to get on board.

STEPHEN: I LOVE ME SOME RED PANDA ADVENTURES! If, after listening to all of the other shows in the Major Spoilers Podcast Network, you still have free time in your day, you simply must listen to the Red Panda Adventures. Part Shadow, part Green Hornet, part Batman, I’m going to be all over this digital only book like a fat kid on ice cream…

Rocketeer_HollywoodHorror_01-CvrAROCKETEER HOLLYWOOD HORROR #1
Writer: Roger Langridge
Artist: Jason Bone
Publisher: IDW Publishing
COver Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: You wanted more Rocketeer… and you’ve got it! Missing scientists! Plucky girl reporters! Betty and Cliff on the rocks! The mysterious Church of Cosmicism! And who is the sinister Otto Rune? Pulp thrills the way you like them as the Rocketeer comes up against a brand-new adversary in… “The Hollywood Horror!”

RODRIGO: This is shaping up to be a pretty good week. Assuming I get some time I’m definitely going to check this out.

STEPHEN: Why yes, yes I do want more Rocketeer. Though I was hoping Mark Waid and Chris Samnee would have stuck around for a while longer, I do like Roger Langridge’s work, so I think this adventure will be a-okay. If you don’t read Rocketeer, why aren’t you?

SM-vs-SHAZAMSUPERMAN VS SHAZAM!
Writers: Roy Thomas, Joey Cavalieri, Gerry Conway
Artists: Gil Kane, Richard J. Buckler Sr, Dick Giordano
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $19.99
SOLICITATION:
• It’s the Man of Steel vs. the World’s Mightiest Mortal in this collection featuring Mr. Mxyzptlk, Mr. Mind, Captain Nazi, Black Adam and more!
• Collects ALL-NEW COLLECTOR’S EDITION C-58, DC COMICS
PRESENTS #33-34 and 49, and DC COMICS PRESENTS ANNUAL #3.

MATTHEW: Okay, I admit it. I am a giant sucker for crossovers between universes, but especially those from back in the day when they were as rare as hen’s teeth and often collected in unusual formats like the Treasury Size comics. When you talk about the earliest meetings between The Big Blue Boy Scout and the Big Red Cheese, DC might as well just title this one as “Hey, Matthew: You Owe Us 20 Bucks Please Volume 1.” Plus, it’s back when Captain Marvel’s uniform was at its best, a red-and-gold beauty that wasn’t noodled to death with assymmetry and other nonsense. (Although, I can kind of live with the hoodie.)

THORGOT2012005THOR: GOD OF THUNDER #5
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Esad Ribic
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: • The shocking finale of our opening salvo…!
• As three Thors from three eras race to stop the God Butcher, the full extent of his vicious scheme takes terrifying shape.

GEORGE: I don’t know if the Norse portions of the Marvel universe have ever been better than in the wake of Marvel NOW! Jason Aaron’s written himself a tricky challenge in telling one story in three separate points in time, but he has handled it well. And now the first arc comes to a close. The conclusion should be pretty epic, if it’s anything like the lead-up.

Transformers Robots In Disguise 14 Comic Book Preview  Megatron is BACK Image (11)__scaled_600TRANSFORMERS ROBOTS IN DISGUISE #14
Writer: John Barber
Artist: Andrew Griffith
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION: MEGATRON IS BACK!

The day the AUTOBOTS hoped would never arrive. . . is here. CYBERTRON is burning, BUMBLEBEE’s government is crumbling, and MEGATRON is here.

Sides are chosen. . . and heroes fall.

ROB: Easily the best Transformers material I’ve seen in years, Robots in Disguise has really put me back onto the path of the giant robot. Pairing up some of the best characters the franchise has to offer and playing them in scenarios they should never be involved in. Giving us character driven issues affecting a massive whole, Robots in Disguise is exactly what Transformers should be.

skullkickers1UNCANNY SKULLKICKERS #1
Writer: Jim Zub
Artist: Edwin Huang
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.50
SOLICITATION: The UNCANNY SKULLKICKERS: Two hard-headed mercenaries kill monsters and cause havoc in their search for money, fame and adventure! A bold new 
direction! A perfect jumping-on point! A newly added adjective! Our nineteeth issue, but also a new issue #1! It’s all here, people! Don’t make us use more exclamation marks!!
P.S. Retailers: Rack this comic beside other “Uncanny” comics you may have hanging around and sell a ton of copies. Do it.

ZACH: I have been anxiously awaiting this issue for months! Even though the cover might say this is a new number one, don’t let Jim Zub fool you. This is still a continuation of the last story arc we read so this is a no brain pick up for previous Skullkickers fans.

uncannyxmen2UNCANNY X-MEN #2
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Chris Bachalo
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
SOLICITATION:
• There is a mole on Cyclops’ team, but who is it?
•  When you hunt the UNCANNY X-MEN you use Sentinels, but when you find out WHO’S DOING THE HUNTING your jaw will drop!

ZACH: My exploration into the X-Men side of the Marvel Universe continues on this week!
Am I even entirely sure that this is the right Uncanny X-title that I started reading last month? No I am not. Going pick up both just to be sure.

xtremeX-TREME X-MEN #11
Writer: Greg Pak
Artist: Stephen Segovia
Publisher: Marvel
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: After the events of their last mission, something is off about Xavier. Will the team be able to close the tears between dimensions without him? PLUS! Romance is in the air…or it could be, if Dazzler and Cyclops don’t kill each other first!

ROB: With the reality hopping nature of the title, you expect a few variations on some themes, but with the wild nature of these variations, we aren’t talking simple What If? scenarios. X-Treme X-Men has continually been providing interesting looks at a number of odd realities and is quickly becoming my favorite Marvel title.

young-avengers2YOUNG AVENGERS #2
Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Jamie McKelvie
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
SOLICITATION: Has Wiccan made a horrible mistake that comes back to bite everyone on their communal posteriors? Spoilers: Yes.Does this guest star the Uncanny Avengers? Spoilers: Also Yes.A figure from Loki’s past emerges. Friend? Foe? What will it be? Spoilers: It’s Foe.And much more from Marvel’s most critically acclaimed book. Yes, we’re saying it’s critically acclaimed and it’s not even out yet. We are very bad.

MATTHEW: Here’s all you need to know: Issue 1 did the impossible and made me like Marvel Boy. I’m sold, and you should check this one out…