Captain's Picks 3.1.2017

Marvel Pick of the Week:

America #1


What Previews said:

(W) Gabby Rivera (A) Joe Quinones

At last! Everyone's favorite no-nonsense powerhouse, America Chavez, gets her own series! Written by critically-acclaimed YA novelist Gabby Rivera (Juliet Takes A Breath) and drawn by all-star artist Joe Quinones (HOWARD THE DUCK), Marvel Comics' brand new AMERICA series shines a solo spotlight on the high-octane and hard-hitting adventures of the one and only America Chavez! America has always been uncontestably awesome, and as the newly appointed leader of the Ultimates, she's now officially claimed her place as the preeminent butt-kicker of the Marvel Universe! But while leading a team of heroes and punching out big bads is great and all, it doesn't really leave much time for self-discovery... So what's a super-powered teenager do when she's looking for a little fulfillment? She goes to college! She just has to stop an interdimensional monster or two first, plus shut down a pesky alien cult that's begun worshipping her exploits! Rated T+

What Red Shirt Comics says:

Punching holes, saving the day and leaving her mark. America is a FANTASTIC premise in my mind. This character is a queer woman of color, every type of person our media has painted as a perpetual victim, but here she is, strong, confident, in charge of her life, and focused on making a positive difference. If you're at all familiar with the character, there are more than a few nice moments that dip their toe into her past, but mostly the book is looking forward with the new direction.

DC Pick of the Week:

Superman #18


What Previews said:

(W) Peter J. Tomasi, Patrick Gleason (A/CA) Patrick Gleason, Mick Gray

"SUPERMAN REBORN" part one! In DC UNIVERSE: REBIRTH #1, the enigmatic Mr. Oz told this Superman, "You and your family are not what you believe you are. And neither was the fallen Superman." Now, in the first Rebirth crossover between SUPERMAN and ACTION COMICS, the shocking truth behind Oz's words is revealed. It begins with one of Oz's prisoners escaping, and ends in a tragic moment for Lois and Superman. The covers by Patrick Gleason and Mick Gray and the variant covers by Gary Frank for SUPERMAN #18-19 and ACTION COMICS #975-976 will connect to form a single vertical image.

What Red Shirt Comics says:

So many times in my life I've heard it's impossible to write Superman because he's too powerful. I've heard, he should never get married and have a kid because he won't be relatable to younger readers. As a dad, this comic was a gut punch. I've read very few Superman comics as able to make the Man of Steel as vulnerable and weak as any normal person, even when he doesn't have his powers. Giving him Jon has grounded him in a way I don't think most people would have expected. His priorities changed, his focus narrows. There's a reason young people have the energy to protest and march in the streets or stay out all night or hitchhike across Europe or take chances focusing on art careers that may never pay. Without REAL responsibilities, without real stakes in a life, you have the freedom to do ANYTHING. Now Superman has a family and is putting down roots and that means he has everything to lose.

Other Pick of the Week:

Royal City #1


What Previews said:

(W) Jeff Lemire (A) Jeff Lemire (CA) Emi Lenox

DOUBLE-SIZED DEBUT ISSUE! NEW ONGOING SERIES written and illustrated by JEFF LEMIRE (DESCENDER, A.D., Sweet Tooth). ROYAL CITY charts the lives, loves, and losses of a troubled family and a vanishing town across three decades. Patrick Pike, a fading literary star who reluctantly returns to the once-thriving factory town where he grew up, is quickly drawn back into the dramas of his two adult siblings, his overbearing mother, and his brow-beaten father, all of whom are still haunted by different versions of his youngest brother, Tommy, who drowned decades ago. ROYAL CITY is a return to the literary and thematic territory of LEMIRE's breakthrough graphic novel Essex County and is his most ambitious, and most personal, project to date.

What Red Shirt Comics says:

What to say about this book... It's beautiful. The only way I think to improve the look, is if it was hand lettered like they used to be. The clean and orderly typeface against the beautifully flowing yet ragged ink and watercolor seems a touch out of place. But if that's the only complaint I have about the art? The story grabbed me pretty quick, my eyes darting ahead trying to maintain the pace of natural dialog, but then suddenly my gaze would shift backward, because I felt like I was missing out on something. It's like being on a long train ride and getting lost in your thoughts and then realizing the landscape is beautiful and you haven't been noticing. This is something you'll have to read more than once. A lot of stories play with the concept of our upbringing and how it conflicts with our needs and wants as adults; the pain and damage and conflict we carry that often is never resolved in any real sense. Royal City manages to do more than play with it. In Royal City it doesn't seem like a trope, it is natural and uncomfortable and real. The relationships seem real. Think of the movie Nebraska. Oh, yeah, one other thing. When you read this, you should throw on Jeff Lemire's Royal City Spotify mix to go with it. Click Here!

Other Pick of the Week:

Jim Henson's The Power of the Dark Crystal #1


What Previews said:

(W) Jody Houser (A) Kate Niemczyk, Marguerite Sauvage (CA) Sanya Anwar

Friends in need! Sometimes saving the world entails a little help from your friends. When a suspicious new intern comes to Zipline, asking questions about celeb columnist Faith Herbert, it's up to her coworkers to help safeguard her secret identity as Summer Smith. Faith's greatest power has always been inspiring others - see just how much she's changed the lives of her new friends in this special one-shot story!

What Red Shirt Comics says:

This is a really cute book. This issue reminded me of the new show Powerless a bit, the office dynamics and the relationships we wind up with. In the same way you don't get to pick your family, you also don't get to pick your coworkers. And in a lot of cases, you see your coworkers more often than your family. This is a nice reminder of what a work family can be.

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