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Oddities, Genocracies, And The Flaw: ‘Inhumans’ by Paul Jenkins and Jae Lee [Review]

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In advance of Matt Fraction and Joe Madureira's upcoming Inhuman series, this week Marvel released a new hardcover edition of the highly-regarded Inhumans by Paul Jenkins and Jae Lee. The twelve-issue Marvel Knights book, which won the 1999 Eisner Award for “Best New Series,” brought a new level of sophistication to the Lee/Kirby oddballs, activating in them the dormant metaphors of class separation and the coming-of-age ritual. At a time when superhero books seemed to be improving at an explosive rate, Inhumans was one of the most-talked-about comics on the stands; it’s certainly one of Marvel’s defining books of the era, and for most of its run, it was one of my favorites. But there’s something about it that keeps me from labeling it a classic. To quote Maximus the Mad, “there is a flaw.”

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The Ten Best ‘Batman: Black and White’ Stories (So Far)

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A new volume of Batman: Black and White kicked off last week, continuing the DC Comics anthology's tradition of high quality. Debuting in 1996, the original Batman: Black and White series quickly set the comics world ablaze with a collection of short, powerful tales told by some of the industry's finest. Edited by Mark Chiarello, the four issues gathered sixteen original eight-page black and white stories from a who’s who of influential creators, including Archie Goodwin, Joe Kubert, Howard Chaykin, Brian Bolland, Bill Sienkiewicz, Neil Gaiman, and several more. It won the Eisner Awards for “Best Short Story” and “Best Anthology,” inspired a ton of great statues (one of which you can win), and two follow-up volumes in 2002 and 2007, mostly made up of backup stories from the Batman: Gotham Knights series.

In celebration of the new series, I read all three volumes of Batman: Black and White (I also did other stuff, I have a life), and after poring over all 600-plus pages, I can confidently say that these are the ten best stories from the original volumes, presented here in chronological order.

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Michael Kupperman: A Comics Voice that Defies Categorization

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"WTF? I guess I don't count, again."

That was cartoonist Michael Kupperman's tweeted response a few weeks ago to an exhaustive article in The Comics Journal about one-man anthologies. Well, it was almost exhaustive. It didn't include Kupp

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‘The Unwritten’: The Grown-up Boy Wizard Comic Begins a Twice-Monthly ‘War of Words’

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In the pages of The Unwritten, Mike Carey and Peter Gross have crafted a remarkable epic about the power of stories. (If you've yet to try it, Vertigo offers the first issue as a free download.) On on

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Comics We Love: ‘Screamland: Death of the Party’ [22-Page Preview + Interview]

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If you think you're fed up with the ghastly state of Hollywood horror, mystery and science fiction, where vampires are sunbathed supermodels with perfect skin and wolfmen are traffic-stopping adonises with chiseled abs -- and where everything else pretty much just sucks too -- then you should ask the real movie monsters how they feel. A werewolf, a c

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Comics We Love: Vertigo’s ’100 Bullets’ By Brian Azzarello & Eduardo Risso

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If a stranger offered you a briefcase containing a gun, 100 completely untraceable bullets, and incontrovertible evidence identifying the person responsible for the worst thing that's ever happened to you, and the promise of full immunity for your retribution, would you take it?

The mysterious man in question is Agent Graves, and he and his briefcase full of hot flaming death are the center of one of the most important comics of the last decade. And beginn

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‘Secret Avengers’ by Warren Ellis: Big, Smart Stories One Issue At A Time [Review]

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Superhero comics have with increasing frequency been turning out stories that match epic scope with epic length, with massive world-saving adventures featuring casts of hundreds covering several issue-long arcs crossing over into multiple other books with spin-offs and tie-ins. And

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Comics We Love: ‘Kamandi, The Last Boy on Earth’

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Thudding onto shelves everywhere this week is Kamandi Omnibus Volume 1, a hardcover collection of the first twenty issues of Jack Kirby's massive post-apocalyptic epic adventure. Under-appreciated in its time, the classic series has a chance to find a new audience thanks to Kamandi's recent appearances in Wednesday Comics, Co

Filed Under: , , Category: Comics We Love, DC

Guns, Drugs And Monsters: Steve Niles’ ‘Criminal Macabre’ [20-Page Preview]

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On sale now is Criminal Macabre Omnibus volume 1, a handsome new volume from Dark Horse collecting the early issues of the series by Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith and Kelly Jones. Criminal Macabre tells the variously dark and depraved stories of Cal McDonald, a hard-drink

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Hulk Smash Preconceptions: Peter David’s Epic Run on ‘The Incredible Hulk’

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If you own Volumes 1 through 7 of Marvel's Hulk Visionaries: Peter David series, then it surely is a good week to be you, friend. Get this: there's a Volume 8, and it's out this week. I know, right? Ch

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