The Top 10 DC Comics Coming in December
Welcome to the second installment in a new ongoing feature at Comics Alliance, where we present and take apart each month's solicitations from Marvel and DC. Today we're taking a select look at the best and most interesting books coming from DC Comics in December, from "Batman and Robin" to opening the DC and Vertigo vaults. (Note: "Batman, Inc." #2 was left out because I figured you guys have heard enough of me fawning over that comic. It looks amazing, buy it.)
Cover by PATRICK GLEASON
1:10 Variant cover by ETHAN VAN SCIVER
Batman and Robin find themselves in the middle of a deadly crusade as "angels" continue falling from the skies! The White Knight is shining his heavenly light into the dark corners of Gotham City in his quest to vanquish the shadows of the soul in "Dark Knight, White Knight" part 2 of 3!
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers. Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
On sale DECEMBER 15 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US
2. BATMAN: ORPHANS #1-2
Art and cover by CARLO BARBERI & JUAN VLASCO
Robin's been found dead! And that's not an easy thing to face – especially when you're Tim Drake! In this pre-RED ROBIN tale, Tim and Batman must solve the murder of an impostor Robin and follow the trail of someone putting together a new team of teenaged sidekicks made up of kids who've been promised that they'll become the new Robin...IF they survive!
Shipping both issues of this stand alone tale in December!
Issue #1 on sale DECEMBER 1
Issue #2 on sale DECEMBER 15
1 and 2 of 2 • 56 pg, FC, $3.99 US
The vaults are opening pretty wide with this coming out, since I've never even heard of it. The fact that it's a pre-Red Robin tale certainly implies that this is inventory material, but the "'02" on the cover pretty much cements it, so: this is the latest stop on the DC Comics "Oh Wait, We Had All This Crap Ready To Publish Sitting In My Drawer" train. Berganza's done a little bit of writing work since this, including a two-issue stint on "Action Comics" under the name J.D. Finn to finish up Chuck Austen's run. Which is kind of surprising, since Eddie Berganza is an editor at DC, so you'd think he'd be able to get his own stuff published. The "Deadpool" art team of Carlo Barberi and Juan Vlasco provide art in a completely different style from their current one, or so it seems.
Gail Simone's "Birds of Prey" relaunch has been interesting since it's clearly been engineered to serve dual purposes. On one hand, it's Gail Simone's return to the book that made her name as a writer, and her remit has always been to deliver big slam-bang superhero action featuring ladies that actually pass the Bechdel Test. However, it seems that that audience has been feeling kind of alienated by this title largely due to artist Ed Benes's work (for whom the book was essentially a showcase) being somewhat exploitative of the female form (to put it nicely). With this issue, "Green Lantern Corps" and "Captain Britain and MI:13" artist Ardian Syaf joins the crew, and his cleaner-Ivan-Reis style should hopefully fit the subject material better.
Written by PAUL CORNELL
Art by MARCO RUDY and ED BENES
Cover by ETHAN VAN SCIVER
While present-day Lex Luthor is busy fighting an array of the DCU's most vile foes over in ACTION COMICS, this annual takes a look back at two formative encounters Luthor had before he became the bald mad genius we know and love (to hate) today! Marco Rudy illustrates a story of young Lex and Darkseid, while Ed Benes tackles a tale starring Luthor and Batman foe Ra's al Ghul!
On sale DECEMBER 1 • 56 pg, FC $4.99 US
Written by GEOFF JOHNS
Art by BRETT BOOTH
Cover by GENE HA
It's BRIGHTEST (CHRISTMAS) DAY! What do you want for Christmas? Orange Lantern Larfleeze wants everything – including Santa Claus himself! And nothing, not even the heroes of the DC Universe can to stop the Orange Lantern from getting what he wants! Plus, you won't want to miss the strange holiday season shenanigans starring the rest of the Orange Lantern Corps! Superstar writer Geoff Johns and artist Brett Booth team up for an unbelievable sleigh ride adventure!
ONE-SHOT • On sale DECEMBER 22 • 32 pg, FC, $3.99 US
Written by MARK SABLE
Art by SEAN MURPHY
Cover by JAY FABOK
Don't miss this untold tale from writer Mark Sable (Grounded, TWO-FACE: YEAR ONE) and red-hot artist Sean Murphy (JOE THE BARBARIAN) bringing the Teen Titans and The Flash's Rogues Gallery into direct conflict! Two people already died over a mysterious object, and now both teams want it. How much more blood will be spilled to obtain it as this gets deadly personal for all involved?
ONE-SHOT • On sale DECEMBER 22 • 56 pg, FC, $4.99 US
Again, FROM THE DC VAULT! This one-shot has been teased by artist Sean Murphy for a while -- it was originally designed as a fill-in during (presumably) the Johns run, but then it became out of date and shelved, and now it's out because Sean Murphy's a gigantic new name from "Joe the Barbarian." So the secret to getting DC to like your style is, I guess, to work with Grant Morrison at Vertigo. And then somehow affect a regime change.
7. LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES ANNUAL #1
Written by PAUL LEVITZ & KEITH GIFFEN
Art and cover by KEITH GIFFEN & JOHN DELL
On sale DECEMBER 29 • 56 pg, FC, $4.99 US
I've never been a big Legion fan. My first issue, barring a Composite Superman/Batman story from when I was a kid, was the late 2004 reboot by Mark Waid and Barry Kitson. I dig the concept, I've followed it ever since even into the current deboot era, and even I realize it's a pretty big deal that Levitz and Giffen are reuniting. The "Great Darkness Saga" collaborators are one of those legendary teams in comics, like Wolfman and Perez or Claremont and Byrne, and neither of them have gone crazy yet, so there's actually a good chance this might recapture some of the magic. Whatever that magic is. I haven't read it yet.
Written by NICK SPENCER
Art by CAFU & BIT and CHRISCROSS
Cover by GARY FRANK
T.H.U.N.D.E.R. AGENTS doesn't let up on the throttle for a second as the team's assault on the Spider compound to rescue a captured teammate continues! Plus, special guest artist ChrisCross (FIRESTORM) illustrates a story spotlighting the backstory of doomed speedster Lightning!
On sale DECEMBER 8 • 40 pg, FC $3 .99 US
Written by ADAM BEECHEN
Art by MIKE S. MILLER
Cover by JHEREMY RAAPACK & RICHARD FRIEND
A page is about to turn in the history of the WildStorm Universe's flagship title, as the epic story that began with the end of the world draws to a close. While the final battle against a mystical threat here on Earth builds to its climax, a sudden arrival from space may bring great hope – or greater despair. Friends are reunited and lives are permanently changed as a new Doctor is revealed. But will this development finally bring about the healing of their shattered world?
On sale DECEMBER 22 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US
The solicitation doesn't even mention it, but this comic concludes the entire WildStorm Universe. I really don't know what to think of the fact that the final issue of the WSU, the universe that gave us "Authority," "Planetary" and "Sleeper," will be drawn by Mike S. Miller, a guy who did fill-in issues of JLA in the '90s before being blacklisted from DC Comics (or so the rumors go) for making homophobic comments on their message board. I realize this is a mercy killing, but c'mon guys, couldn't you give it a classier send-off than this?
Written by GARTH ENNIS & JASON AARON
Art by STEVE DILLON and SEAN MUPRHY
Cover by GLENN FABRY
Four of the industry's biggest stars take on John Constantine in two hard-to-find 2-part stories! First up reprints HELLBLAZER #57 and #58 – the long out-of-print tale from Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon's (PREACHER) character-defining as Constantine and Chas confront some very macabre tests on human cadavers. Next is a story from HELLBLAZER #245 and #246 by new superstars Jason Aaron (SCALPED) and Sean Murphy (JOE THE BARBARIAN) following a doomed documentary crew exploring the mystery behind what happened to Mucous Membrane – Constantine's former punk band.
On sale DECEMBER 15 • 96 pg, FC, $7.99 US MATURE READERS