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Don’t Ask! Just Buy It! – August 3, 2011: Caniff, Canards, Canadians

Reading Comics author Douglas Wolk runs down the hottest comics and graphic novels coming out this week.

KEY:
* History
^ Violence
% Psychedelic rock bands

* % 15 LOVE #3
The long-delayed, enormously enjoyable Andi Watson/Tommy Ohtsuka miniseries about Millie the Pre-Model Tennis Prodigy concludes. Clearly there’s not a big audience right now for Marvel Universe tennis manga, but you just wait: someday there’ll be a whole shelf of this stuff. Unseeded X-Men! Ultimate Match Point!

* ^ A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE
A new edition of John Wagner and Vince Locke’s 1997 graphic novel, on which the film of the same name was based. Given my recent fascination with Wagner’s writing, I’m going to have to dig this up.

* CANIFF
A $50 IDW hardcover edited by Dean Mullaney, with tons of material from his personal archives, covering the “Dickie Dare,” “Terry & the Pirates” and “Steve Canyon” eras. Lots of long-unseen material here, apparently. For serious Caniff completists with another Ulysses S. Grant to spare, this week also sees Steve Canyon: The Complete Series, reprinting the seven Steve Canyon comic books that appeared in the ’50s. Caniff was apparently involved with them to some extent, as was his frequent assistant/ghost William Overgard.

* DC RETROACTIVE: THE FLASH: THE ’80S
A new story by William Messner-Loebs and Greg Larocque? That’ll be a sight to see. The backup is a reprint of one of their ’80s-era stories, apparently.

% HERO COMICS 2011
The big attraction in this issue of the annual anthology to benefit the Hero Initiative is the story reuniting Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth and Mike Dringenberg, the original Sandman team; the solicitation calls it “the Beatles getting back together for one final album.” Wouldn’t it be more correct to say “the Beatles and Jimi Hendrix getting back together”?

% iZOMBIE #16
Chris Roberson and Michael Allred doing the comics equivalent of a cuddly Misfits cover band. Also this week: Roberson writes the final issue of Superman before the Great Renumbering, assuming that it doesn’t get switched out for the All-Kitten Super-Spectacular.

* ^ JONAH HEX #70
Final issue under this title, by Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmiotti and–if he’s finished drawing it, always a toss-up–Ryan Sook. Next month, it relaunches as All-Star Western. This is also the week that the venerable Adventure Comics sputters to a halt again, with #529. Just short of the 500-issue mark! (It was New Comics, then New Adventure Comics, and became Adventure with #31.)

^ MOON KNIGHT #4
Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev’s current superhero gig is paced more slowly than I’d hope, but it’s been very solid so far.

* S.H.I.E.L.D. #2
Jonathan Hickman/Dustin Weaver. Isaac Newton, Nikola Tesla, Howard Stark–you know, all the scientific greats. Seriously, I admire this series’ insistence on going its own exquisite way within a shared-superhero-universe setting.

% SNARKED! #0
A $1 intro issue of the new Roger Langridge series, in which he takes on Lewis Carroll’s characters. Kid-friendly, parent-guffawed-at. Again: new Roger Langridge. Again: one dollar.

* WALT SIMONSON’S MIGHTY THOR ARTIST’S EDITION
Or, for the cost of a mere 125 copies of Snarked!, you could pick up this hardcover volume, reproducing Thor #337-340 and #360-362 from Simonson’s original artwork at its original size. Those who wish to slaver may do so now.

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