It’s March 20, 2013, and MOM is back in the saddle, ready to rumble and share just a few of her favorite covers of the week.
One of the things that has helped the Saga covers stand out is the solid backgrounds surrounding the characters each month. Now, there are examples, like last month’s cover, which include some setting, but the sky is always removed in favor of a solid color. This decision has really helped the detailed and complex art of Fiona Staples to pop and helps the book stand out on comic store shelves.
This month there is the addition to the simplistic beauty of parts of objects in the foreground. The flowers are something you would see in a still-life painting and yet they glisten and shine. Having such a traditional looking scene also helps the horns to stand out, despite they’re mostly covered up by hands.
It’s the Shaolin Cowboy, riding a giant turtle. It doesn’t really get more epic than that.
Now, for those who are not familiar with Geof Darrow’s creation, the Shaolin Cowboy does not often ride atop a traditional steed. Also, this image is nothing new. First released back in 2011 to herald the return of The Shaolin Cowboy, it has become iconic and fitting for the anthology which is featuring an article that interviews the comic writer and artist.
So, perhaps choosing this cover might be considered cheating by some of you. How often do I actually stick to the rules on Cover Watch?
Paint streaked background, check.
High contrast silhouettes, check.
Cool and foreboding colors, check.
This cover does a lot while mistakenly looking simple. The silhouettes on the cover of this mini-series all represent literary characters. The tiny details put into these depictions, without using the face, is very ingenious.
The white pain streaks very starkly above and around the protagonist, in blue conveys an ominous tone. Not all of these characters possessing Fabian Gray are heroes. It makes me hope that this provides a challenge to overcome in the story.
BIRDS OF PREY #18
Written by Christy Marx
Cover Art by Emanuela Lupacchino
Published by DC Comics
The Birds of Prey books have been featuring a lot of action shots on their covers lately. This month is no exception with a throwdown between The Birds and Mr. Freeze insinuated (I say insinuated because lately with DC the cover shows one thing while something completely different or opposite happens on the inside.). Despite this, March’s cover feels different, and a lot of that credit goes to Emanuela Lupacchino.
Batgirl is attacked in a rather traditional pose, however her body looks like she’s about to sidekick, and not go for an impossible B&A shot. Black Canary is giving her cry and Strix is going for the kill. If you recognize Lupacchino’s style, that’s because it has been popping up all over the DCU — from Ame-Comi Girls (Powergirl & Supergirl books,) to World’s Finest #12 and soon on Supergirl #20. Needless to say (but I’ll say it anyway), I think we’ll be seeing more of Lupacchino and that’s not a bad thing.
Muted shades that blend together are usually something to be avoided. When that is done it generally makes it hard to see details, provides little contrast to catch the eye or makes font stand out garishly once it’s placed on the cover. However, on this cover it works!
Somewhere caught between a superhero book and a pulp noir, JSA Liberty Files lends itself well to this dark and sinister feeling. If you were not aware, it’s more of the hero that is represented here than the villain (which is Nazi Germany.)
The horrific detailing on the skull along with all the characters whose lives are being changed by his involvement work well to metaphorically convey the tone of the book.
Something about sun-bleached blonde man, with a strong jaw and a quick hand that makes a cover sizzle. Juan Jose Ryp seems to have captured all that and a bag of chips with the first cover of this comic.The dead are rising from their graves just to get their hands on him. Sure, there are more manly and appealing things going on with this story for most readers. However, at least for one traditional cover, some of us get a little socially acceptable, fantasy eye-candy.