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 Sextet, 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 reading in the comments.
S Batman #17
If you've been following the latest Death in the Family Bat-crossover, then this one's a must-buy. The Joker's been working to alienate Batman's various crimefighting allies from the Dark Knight and the finale offers the chance to see if the psycho clown's plot works. Scott Snyder has delivered strong stories so far but the stakes are incredibly high with this one.
America's Got Powers #5
The cynical take on superpowers in Jonathan Ross and Bryan Hitch's miniseries has been enjoyable as a satire of today's media culture. But it's also worked as a sideways examination of how a person crafts a sense of self. Are you the same person whether you're famous and powerful or not? A great update on the outcast hero paradigm.
Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips' brilliant noir series travels back centuries into the past to look at another character that was cursed with the power to have men do whatever she wants. Part of what's made this comic so great is how the creative team successfully evokes the feel of bygone eras and it'll be interesting to see they handle a time period that's less modern than we've already seen in Fatale.
Secret Avengers #1
I like Nick Spencer's comics writing and the set-up and logline here is enough to pique my interest:
"The Most Dangerous Secrets We Have... Are The Ones We Keep From Ourselves.' The new Nick Fury leads a covert Avengers strike team including but not limited to Hawkeye, Black Widow, The Hulk, The Winter Soldier, Maria Hill and Phil Coulson on missions so dangerous, even the team members themselves can't know about them!"
Uncanny X-Men #1
As someone who was disappointed with Cyclops' character arc in Avengers vs. X-Men, I've been waiting for this book. The hook here is whether this new team of mutants are saviors or terrorists. Cyclops, Magneto, Emma Frost and the other characters here think they're doing the right thing to save the mutant race and character dynamics in that kind of ambiguous set-up is the kind of thing writer Brian Bendis excels at.
Powers Bureau #1
More Bendis, more moral ambiguity. I'm way behind on Powers, the series where Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming do a grounded, psychologically driven take on superheroes. So the opportunity for a new jumping-on point is a welcome one. This comic is supposed to become a TV series at some point, so it's conceivable that said show may look like this series.