If you're here in the Panel Discussion programming block, you might be a lapsed comics reader, trying to find a way back to the JLA Satellite. Or you might someone killing time until you pick up your weekly Wednesday pull list. Or maybe you've said goodbye to dozens of longboxes to embrace the promise of digital comics. Whichever it is, you're still interested in the good stuff.
Welcome, then, to the Panel Discussion
Dozen Quintet, where I pick out just-released or out-soon comics that I think are worth paying attention to. Ready? Then, let's meet the sequential art that'll be draining your wallet this week. Be sure to chime in with the books you'll be picking up or that you think everybody should be ready in the comments.
Beasts of Burden: Neighborhood Watch #1
I've loved everything I've read from Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson's animals-as-defenders-against-the-supernatural comic. The animals' different personalities feel as they would in real life—headstrong, wise and a little fearful—and Thompson's excellent art makes the proceedings both creepy and adorable. If you like Buffy, Scooby-Doo or just great story-telling, do yourself a favor and pick this up.
Animal Man #12 & Swamp Thing #12
It's rare that a crossover feels worth the wait. Usually, the build-up is slow and poorly paced. But, that's not been the case in these two horror-inflected titles. Alec Holland and Buddy Baker's parallel paths as the avatars of animal and plant life finally converge in this week's issues and I can't wait to see how their characteristics and cast clash and co-operate in the Rotworld crossover.
I can't say anything about this medical crime thriller better than the solicitation copy already does: "Human traffickers. Rogue medical teams. Yakuza run organ mills and a six year-old drug fiend. Welcome to Dr. Benjamin Dane's nightmare. His only way out? Bring down the man who set him up by reclaiming organs already placed in some very powerful people. If Dexter, ER and 100 Bullets had a three-way and that mind blowing tryst somehow resulted in a kid, that kid would read HARVEST. Medical Grade Revenge."
I'm going to read this.
Matt Fraction and the artists on this title have already made the slightly trippy adventures in this series one of my favorites. But this issue promises a journey into alternate universes, always a favorite trope when executed well. Fraction's the kind of writer who can use twisted views on well-known characters extremely well so hopes are high for this issue.
More Fraction, this time on a fan-favorite character. Hawkeye reunites the writer with the wonderful David Aja, who illustrated the excellent Immortal Iron Fist book a few years back. The sleek design sense of Aja's rendering suits an archer character. It'll be pretty, if nothing else.