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Chris vs. Previews: December 2009

The 500+ page Previews catalog can be pretty tough to get through, even for the most jaded comics reader. That’s why every month, ComicsAlliance contributor Chris Sims sits down to scour the pages for the best, worst, and most mind-bogglingly insane items and bring them to you, the discerning reader, in our recurring feature, Chris vs. Previews!

P. 34 – Achewood v.3: A Home for Scared People: The first thing that we’re excited about in this month’s previews is a third volume of one of our favorite webcomics, Chris Onstad’s Achewood, plus a third for Wondermark! too. Dark Horse’s webcomic collections, especially for these two, are beautifully made and loaded with plenty of extras to justify the transition to print, and the first “Achewood” volume, “The Great Outdoor Fight,” was easily one of our favorite graphic novels of the decade.

The only problem is that rather than collecting a single arc, “A Home For Scared People” looks like it’s following up on the second volume with a chronological reprint of the series, starting around 2002. This in itself is not a bad thing (the early strips are highly enjoyable), but it means that we’re still a long way off from getting the deluxe hardcover version of the story where Ray buys Airwolf:

Good thing we can read it online!P. 40 – Buffy the Vampire Slayer #32, with writer Brad Meltzer: In January, the comic book tie-in to a show lauded for its feminism (exemplified by sexy lesbians and a psychologically scarred main character who gets into one self-destructive relationship after another) will have a story arc from a writer best known for scripting a rape on the Justice League satellite.

That’ll end well.

P. 82 – Justice League: Cry for Justice #7: This month, the DC Marketing department has decided that it’s a good idea to refer to “Blackest Night” as “cosmically abysmal” and then let us know that “Justice League: Cry For Justice” is only going to get worse:

True as those statements might be, they realize they’re supposed to make us want these comics, right?

P. 90 – Wednesday Comics HC: During its 12-week run, reviews of DC’s “Wednesday Comics” tended to shift from infatuation with the format to frustration at what that format was actually doing. Namely, the fact that it was giving us stories that ranged from the fantastic to the outright unreadable, with the great stuff (Paul Pope’s “Strange Adventures” and Kyle Baker’s “Hawkman”) outweighed by the beautiful-but-boring (“Green Lantern”) and the complete wastes of time (“Teen Titans”).

Still, we are interested in the hardcover:

Not just because it’ll be interesting to see how the stories read all together and how the presentation works in a hardcover that’s twice the size of a regular notebook, but because it’s got unpublished pages of “Plastic Man” by Evan Dorkin, and that’s something we need to see.

P. 98 – Mysterius the Unfathomable TP:

Given how it sold, the odds are pretty good that you did not read Jeff Parker and Tom Fowler’s “Mysterius the Unfathomable.” Fortunately, you now have a second chance to read a story where a lout of a magician ties together Dr. Seuss, Burning Man and sex scandals into one gigantic story, and we’d advise you to fix that error.

P. 123 – Superman (Kingdom Come) 1:6 Scale Deluxe Collector Figure: Now, for only $99.99, you too can own a meticulous replica of the doughy neighbor Alex Ross uses as his Superman model!

P. 23 – Hitman Monkey #1:

Huh, a primate assassin out for revenge? Well that’s certainly a concept we’d like to read about!

P.250 – Dan DeCarlo’s Jetta: Dan DeCarlo is probably best known as the long-time artist for Archie Comics that defined their house style and created Josie and the Pussycats — despite Archie’s best efforts at ignoring that fact — and while we’ve mentioned some of his other work before here on ComicsAlliance, most of his non-”Archie” stuff has been out of print for decades. Which is why we’re pretty excited about this:

Put together by archivist and “Good Girl Art” aficionado Craig Yoe, this hardcover collects three issues of “Jetta” that were originally published in 1952.

The series is likely to involve pretty much the same gags as the “Archie” books of the same era transplanted into an Atomic Age future, but it’ll be worth reading just to see more of DeCarlo’s art, especially since it’s got both a guy who appears to have Jughead’s torso and Flash Gordon’s pants, and the occasional horny robot:

P.261: Atomic Robo and the Revenge of the Vampire Dimension #1:

We’re pretty sure that the fourth “Atomic Robo” series is going to be every bit as awesome as the first three, but we wanted to point this one out because there is nothing in that title that is not awesome.

P.330 – Movie Merchandise: “I will take the ring to Mordor… but I do not know the way.”

“If by my life or death I can protect you, I will…

“You have my Nerf gun.”

“And my mini-bust of Cedric Diggory!”

And my axe!

P.341 – Azumanga Daioh Sakaki-San Swimsuit Version Statue: And finally, let’s see what “Previews” has to say about a statue of an underage girl in a bikini, shall we?

The first schoolgirl is none other than Sakaki-San (Swimsuit Ver.), the tall (and busty) girl who is soft-spoken and sensitive. [...] The beautiful Sakaki-san is dressed in her tight yellow swimsuit that highlights all of her sexy curves, especially her ample bust line.

Again: The character is a high school girl. Thanks for keepin’ it classy, Previews.

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