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Weekly Releases September 20, 2017

DC Comics Main Line:                              Picks of the Week

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Batman: The Red Death #1 – Josh Williamson

  • Aquaman #28
  • Batman: The Red Death #1 (Metal Tie-in)
  • Batman #31
  • Batwoman #7
  • Bug! The Adventures of Forager #4
  • Cave Carson Has A Cybernetic Eye #12
  • Green Arrow #31
  • Green Lanterns #31
  • Harley Quinn #28
  • Justice League #29
  • Nightwing #29
  • Super Sons #8
  • Superman #31
  • Trinity #13
  • Wild Storm #7
  • Wonder Woman/ Conan #1

Trade Releases:

  • Batman The Dark Knight: The Master Race HC – Miller & Azzarello
  • Catwoman by Jim Balent Book 1 TP – Jo Duffy Doug Moench
  • DC Meets Hanna-Barbera TP – Various
  • Harley Quinn A Celebration of 25 Years HC – Various
  • Legion by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning Vol 1 TP – Abnett & Lanning
  • Mister Miracle by Jack Kirby TP – Jack Kirby
  • Nightwing (Rebirth) Vol 3 – Tim Seeley

Standouts:

Can’t miss comics of the week include Batman: The Red Death #1, Batman #31, Aquaman #28 , and  Bug! The Adventures of Forager #4 .

Visit your local comic book store and don’t miss out on the discussion!

 

Truth, Justice & The American Way

Superman has always been hailed as a symbol of hope in the comic universe, he represents the best of us, what we, as a society, should strive to become. This is absolutely relevant in today’s world. With all of the problems humanity is facing we could use a beacon of hope like Superman, unfortunately not everyone would agree.

With the recent release of Action Comics #987 a particular scene has caused some controversy. Mr. Oz [mysterious figure, whose identity was finally revealed to readers Wednesday in issue #987 after two years of secrets] has activated his agents in an effort to show Superman humanity isn’t worth saving. One of the agents happened to be a middle-aged, blue-collar American worker who’s job had been outsourced to foreigners. As an agent of Oz, the American blames the foreigners for losing everything he has worked for. Superman, being Superman, saves the foreigners and confronts the “disgruntled Joe”.

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I know what you’re thinking, what is the problem? And the answer is ABSOLUTELY nothing! However, with the political climate that we live in today everyone has an agenda. Fox News published an article [Article link found below] condemning this scene stating “The Man of Steel has now become a propaganda tool for the defenders of illegal aliens.” This statement and article is so off base I had to voice my concern.

First, it was never once said that these people are “Illegal aliens”, even if it may be implied. Second, Superman is a defender of “Man-kind”, he doesn’t ask for your green card before saving your life and finally, the author of this article clearly didn’t read the issue and missed the entire point of the Mr. Oz sleeper agents, instead DC Comics is “Hell-bent on indoctrinating our kids.”

There is so much more in this article that is completely asinine but I digress. Instead of the political blinders that everything is seen through in today’s world, maybe we should all strive to be more like the “Big Blue Boy Scout”

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/09/13/superman-defends-illegals-against-angry-american.html

Grayson – Futures End

Yes, I know this is an old issue. I don’t care, this is my first official content post and I wanted it to be about something I truly admired in comics. Tom King has quickly become one of my favorite writers in all of Comics. His writing clicks for me on many levels in ways other authors haven’t touched and with this issue I realized I was reading something special by someone who truly respects comics as a medium.

SPOILERS AHEAD

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Tom King broke onto the comic scene along side Tim Seeley, Co-writer of Grayson. The “Futures End” issue was one of King’s first go rounds on a solo written issue, and it does not disappoint! This issue for many, is when King started to gain traction in the comic landscape an it tells an amazing story in it’s 22-page, one-shot format. King grabs the attention of the reader right off the bat with a unique story telling structure by writing each page in backwards chronology, however what left the lasting impression for me while reading it was the  theme of responsibility used.

The story opens with Helena Bertinelli (Confidant & Partner) telling Dick “This is the end” as she lets go of the rope that Dick hangs from, inching closer to death. As the story continues and takes the reader back in time, the reason becomes clear as to why Dick has met his fate. He has been charged for the murder of  KGBeast (Leader of Russia), after learning of the civilian population taken out for opposing KGBeasts regime during the war with “Earth 2”. Dick is a character, similar to Bruce Wayne, that carries the weight of the world upon his shoulders, we see this as he explains to Helena, “I was responsible.” “My hands will not be clean!” As mentioned before, responsibility plays a major role throughout the entirety of this issue.

The story continues in backwards fashion, and the reader delves deeper into Helena and Dick’s relationship. We see why the impact of Dick’s betrayal is so meaningful as the quote “My hands will not be clean!” Is used once more. This time however, Helena utters this phrase in a solemn tone just after saving Dick’s life from an armed gunman.   

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King does a masterful job expressing emotion with these two characters, drawing the reader in to their relationship and making you truly feel the dread of that opening page cliff-hanger. Why would Helena follow the KGBeast’s rule after what her and Dick experienced? Something that lingers with the reader after every page of development.

With the story progressing, each page jumping to younger points of Dick’s life we are brought towards the end of the story in a symmetrical loop as the reader catches a glance at Dick’s beginning. After just being brought into Bruce Wayne’s world due to the untimely demise of his parents, Batman explains to Dick about the acidic compound that was used on the rope to murder his parents. Dick angrily asks if Batman will kill the man responsible (Tony Zucco) for their murder, Bruce then tells “No” and divulges to Dick his darkest secret, why he bears the burden of responsibility and dawns the cape and cowl. The reader learns just how much of Bruce is inside Dick as he responds to Bruce’s confidence with our reoccurring quote “His hands were never clean”, bringing everything that has happened previously in the story full circle.

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Finally we reach the final page of the issue, providing closure to the cliff-hanger with which we began. Tony Zucco letting go of the rope that Dick’s parents were using to preform their circus act, similar in fashion to Helena on the opening page.

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King crafts this issue together so that we see the result of choices made by Dick before they happen, it’s an incredible story telling device and one that works perfectly for comics. We feel the impact of betrayal, the lessons learned, and the relationships between Helena and Dick built by past experiences. Which is what makes “…This ain’t finished.” Such a strong closing panel. Spoken as the acidic compound burns away at the rope, perfectly tying together what seems to be Dick’s final moments with what would ultimately result in his rebirth.

It’s hard to have an emotional story in such a short length but a one issue, 22 page story is something Tom King excels at, which is why I’m giving this issue a 9 out of 10. Please do yourself a favor and pick up Tom King’s work including his current Mister Miracle story with artist, Mitch Gerads as issues #2 releases Wednesday, September 13th!

Weekly Releases September 13, 2017

DC Comics Main Line:                               Picks of the week

  • Action Comics #987

    Action #987

    Action Comics #987

  • Batgirl and the Birds of Pray #14
  • Dark Nights: Metal #2
  • Detective Comics #964
  • Flash #30
  • Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #28
  • Justice League of America #14
  • Mister Miracle #2
  • New Super-Man #15
  • Red Hood and The Outlaws #14
  • Suicide Squad #25
  • Supergirl #13
  • Superwoman #14
  • Teen Titans #12
  • Titans #15
  • Wonder Woman #30

Trade Releases:

  • Batman His Greatest Adventures TP – Kelley Puckett
  • DC Universe Rebirth Omnibus Expanded Edition HC – Various
  • Green Lanterns (Rebirth) Vol 3 TP – Sam Humphries
  • Harley Quinn (Rebirth) Vol 3 TP – Amanda Conner
  • Harley Quinn (Rebirth) Deluxe Collection Book 1 HC – Amanda Conner
  • Legends of the Dark Knight Vol 3 HC – Various
  • Superman Reborn (Rebirth) HC – Various
  • Hellblazer Vol 17 TP – Mike Carey

Standouts:

A LOT of great comics releasing this week for DC, but a couple standout from the pack. Wednesday begins the OZ story arc in Action Comics #987, with solicitations teasing the big “Mr. Oz” reveal. As secrets start to unfold, the Rebirth storyline launched last summer is barreling towards it’s endgame with Geoff John’s Doomsday Clock coming out in November. We also have continuations of last months smash hits Dark Nights: Metal & Mister Miracle by Scott Snyder and Tom King respectively, both of which left the comic community craving more after some incredibly shocking twists to launch each series.

Don’t miss these releases! Visit your local comic book shop and pick up these stories! And check back here for reviews of this weeks issues.

And then there was a beginning…

I love comics; it’s as simple as that. Reading, collecting, and discussing comics has been a major hobby of mine since I was a kid and today is the day I share my interest with the world, and thus…The Watchtower. This blog is being launched by a team of individuals dedicated to creating a resource for anyone who wants a medium for discussion, reviews, recommendations and a multitude of various resources. Although we are starting small, our goal for this site is to become a “go to” source for any comic book readers, new or old, to get their comic fix!

Things to look out for:

  • Weekly reviews on new releases
  • Series Reviews
  • Recommendations
  • Artist Spotlights

The Watchtower will focus on the aforementioned list as the site “gets its legs”, and as it grows, our output of information will grow as well. We hope to bring you quality reviews, interesting viewpoints, & thorough analysis on stories, but most importantly we hope to bring you enjoyment from an incredible hobby that we have all love so much!

Follow us on Twitter @TheWatchtowerCB and make sure to check back here for our upcoming post!