Thee Comic Column #66 – Fare Thee Well, Cobra Files

image courtesy of comixology.com

Last month with very little fanfare one of my top three books a month finished its brilliant almost six year run – GIJOE: The Cobra Files. Despite it’s tie-in with a major toy/movie/long-running character base the book, at the hands of constant writer Mike Costa, operated more like a sophisticated espionage thriller a la John Le Carre’s Tinker Tailer Soldier Spy or David Simon’s The Wire. The finale was sublime, magnificent and pulse-pounding. The series never really had a change.

Thee Comic Column #65: The Return of Stray Bullets!

image courtesy of hollywoodreporter.com

Last week before the bad news pertaining to one of my favorite books there was some good news. No, scratch that, there was some AMAZING news! David Lapham’s Stray Bullets, formerly published by his own independent El Capitan, is returning after a nine year (NINE YEARS?!?) hiatus and one of the most heart-wrenching cliffhangers since… well, since Twin Peaks season two’s final episode. And in returning, Stray Bullets has been picked up by Image Comics! So before you go any further reading this go to the series’ Image page HERE where the first four issues are FREE! After that you’ll be hooked and 5-40 are available digitally for $1.99 each. Or, if you’re like me and would rather hold the book in your hand after you see how great it is just wait – if you can – until March 12th when 1-41 are collected in the Stray Bullets Uber Allies Edition – which I believe will be priced at a mere $60 for all those great comics!

Shawn’s Top 11 Albums of 2013

A quick note: This year I had a very tough decision – I changed my top ten to top eleven. I’m not going to lie, I did this under great personal tumult, as adding an extra number really goes against my own preferred aesthetic to these kinds of things. If you add one to make eleven, why not add another to make twelve if there’s a record you just really want to add? The idea of year end ‘best of’ lists has always – to me – been to whittle it down; to separate the wheat from the chaff so to speak. How is it doing that if you add number positions, eh? Well, then I got to thinking, how did ten become the number? And on top of that eleven is a very powerful number for me, so why am I not already doing eleven instead of ten? In the end it occurred to me that while there were a lot of records I loved this year there were a solid eleven that I felt I must absolutely must talk about, so the number change stuck.

Thee Comic Column #64: Save Rachel Rising

image courtesy of ifanboy.com

This week’s column was originally going to be about the best comic book news all year – the return of David Lapham’s Stray Bullets! However in the cosmic balance of ying/yang, the good news was almost immediately followed by the worst news in comics this year. The heartbreak arrived via Twitter when earlier in the week when iconic comic book creator Terry Moore – best known for the long-running and highly influential series Strangers in Paradise – tweeted the following about his newest series, Rachel Rising:

Thee Comic Column #63: Peter David’s Fallen Angel

image courtesy of comics101.com

Thee Comic Column #62: The X-Mas Buying Guide

image courtesy of image courtesy of classes.It.unt.edu

I’m sick this week so I thought I’d take this opportunity of diminished stamina to do as I did last year and pen a quick little buying guide for the comic book fan in your life. Keep in mind there’s plenty of other GREAT comic-related stuff out there, these are just a quick handful of what I would recommend. Also, as with last year I figured it would help if I broke these suggestions down for the various stages of comic-book fan, from beginner to the more sophisticated. I define these various stages of addiction as follows:

Thee Comic Column #61: Rick Remender & the Future of the Marvel U-SPOILERS

image courtesy of newsarama

Okay, you saw the big SPOILER in the title bar, right? I implore you, if you read Uncanny Avengers or even causally follow what’s going on in the Marvel U don’t take the easy way –  take the awesome way! Go pick up the books and read them as they are meant to be read. That said…

He’d been setting it up for thirteen issues – longer when you consider a lot of this is seeded in his Uncanny X-Force run – but last week when Rick Remender tweeted that November 27th’s Uncanny Avengers #14 was going to have a big impact on the Marvel Universe (tweet below) and that he was “looking forward to the hate mail” I got excited and began to re-read Remender’s entire UA run as a run-up.

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