This week’s Honor Roll is chock full o’ goodness with five extremely strong books in a week filled with some great titles. Marvel NOW! is in full swing, and well represented on this list, as well as the prequel to the Throne of Atlantis and one of Dark Horse’s finest titles.
Hands down, my favourite comic of the week, and I do not throw that term around lightly. This is the epitome of what Marvel NOW! is to be and Bendis is taking the X-Men by storm. When this title was first announced and the plot was starting to be fleshed out, I thought it was ridiculous, I’m not going to lie. Bendis’ execution, however, has left me with my foot in my mouth and I will eat crow, etc. etc. This story is bloody brilliant, and Bendis is doing a fantastic job with the “young X-Men”. This is one of the most intriguing ideas being played out in superhero books today, and I honestly can’t wait to see what Bendis is cooking up for the next issue. Oh, and Stuart Immonen is providing the best pencils in the business, and some of the best work of his career. Each page is a new gem, and I want more. NOW!
Written by Kelly Sue DeConnick
Art by Phil Noto
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Speaking of intriguing books, Ghost is just that. Kelly Sue DeConnick has a really fun story here, and I read this book as quickly as I can each month. There is all kinds of eeriness, spookiness, and straight up fun in this issue, and Ghost herself gets more interesting by the page. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, DeConnick’s dialogue is second to none in the entire industry, and this issue is another example of how easy it seems to flow from characters in her stable. This is setting up to be one hell of a finale in a couple of issues, and I can’t wait to see how DeConnick ties all this up. Noto’s art is simplistic and stylish, focusing on what you need to see and not miring the book down in hyper-realistic backgrounds. His panels are dynamic and crisp and his covers are sensational. Heck, Noto’s cover even made it onto our own Mom’s Cover Watch for this week!
THOR: GOD OF THUNDER #2
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Esad Ribic
Publisher: Marvel Comics
I have to admit something. Every time I read the title of this series – and I mean every single damn time, be it on the book, press releases, you name it, I hear “God of Thunder” by KISS in my head. Take that to mean what you will, time to talk about the book. This book is metal. This is thunder and rock n’ roll in a superhero comic. I mean that in the best way, as Aaron has a really solid series on his hand. This is Thor with some serious bite, and his examination of three different eras of Thor is brilliant. He knows this character: young Thor is brash, arrogant, naive. “Current” Thor is noble, strong, and fierce. Elder Thor is a wise, harsh God, and surprisingly similar to his father in many ways. Esad Ribic pencils all of these Thors with flair and skill, bringing the visual thunder to a truly epic book. Great story, high quality art, and more God of Thunder than anyone can handle.
The Throne of Atlantis crossover is coming, and this book makes me want to read it. I’m not a long time Aquaman reader, I don’t have anything against the character, but I never read him often. This crossover was a gamble for DC in one sense: would an Atlantis crossover be overreaching the newly found popularity of Aquaman? Not if the quality is this high, it won’t. This issue is a great prelude to what promises to be a very enjoyable event. There are some very deep, dark threats lurking in the water, and Johns, Woods and Perez do a great job of teasing what is coming our way. Hell is about to break loose, get ready for some fun!
Written by Matt Fraction
Art by Michael Allred
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Now, this book is a whole other kind of fun. My colleague Matt Santori-Griffith said pretty much everything pertinent about this book, but I enjoyed it so much I had to give it a spot on The Honor Roll. Fraction brings a lot of humor to this unique title, hitting all the right notes and infusing a lot of heart into the title. This book is all about family, and the First Family (and extended members) have never been quite as much fun as this. Allred’s art is pitch perfect for Fraction’s script and takes this book to the next level. Loads of fun, accessible to new readers, and visually awesome if nothing else.