Catch it at the Comic Shop October 18th, 2017

Welcome to Catch it at the Comic Shop, where the Panel Patter team looks at what's coming out at your favorite store or digital device this week. Each one of us that participates picks up to three single issues and one trade for your consideration, with a little bit about why we like it.

Mike's Picks:

Scrimshaw #3
Scrimshaw # 3 by Eric Borden and Dave Mims, published by Alterna Comics
If there is a complaint to be made about Alterna Comics, it’s that they tend to cluster their releases together. You can’t go wrong with anything from Alterna this week, though I’m partial to Scrimshaw, a sort of cyberpunk noir with strong art from Dave Mims, whose Sean Murphy-esque style lends itself perfectly to this type of tale.

Sherlock Frankenstein & the Legion of Evil: From the World of Black Hammer #1
Sherlock Frankenstein and the Legion of Evil by Jeff Lemire and David Rubin, published by Dark Horse
Black Hammer has been a remarkable read since it launched. These new smaller spotlight series will allow Lemire to flesh out his characters in all their weirdness. Black Hammer has been the type of series that knows how to reign in its zaniness. I fully expect Sherlock Frankenstein to break that mold, offering a wholehearted embrace of over the top storytelling.

Kid Lobotomy #1 (Cover B - Quitely)
Kid Lobotomy by Peter Milligan and Tess Fowler, published by Black Crown Comics/IDW Publishing
Gerard Way made an interesting comment upon the launch of the Young Animal line at DC. He said that, as a young reader, he didn’t follow writers or artists as much as editors. His particular editor of choice was Shelly Bond, and she launches her new IDW imprint, Black Crown, with this offering from fellow Vertigo veteran writer, Peter Milligan. I’m with Gerard; I’ll follow Shelly.

Now #1
Now by Various, published by Fantagraphics
I pre-ordered this directly from Fantagraphics when I first saw it available. Now is the kind of book that we need, and I highly recommend any mainstream/superhero reader to pick up this anthology if only to realize that you likely love the form of comics as much as the content. You’ll be pleasantly surprised, I bet.

Scott's Picks:

Mage: The Hero Denied #3 by Matt Wagner, Published by Image Comics.
I'm not really too sure yet if I'm wrapped up in this series because of nostalgia or if it's actually really good.  It's probably somewhere in between.  But I am enjoying the story that Matt Wagner is telling here, about a husband and a father.  Those aren't character elements that you often see in comics.  It's weird to say that a comic feels like it was made just for me but if that's possible, this is the comic for me here and now.

Now #1 by various, Published by Fantagraphics
I missed Mome, Fantagraphics last 22 volume anthology series, for some reason that I can't really pinpoint.  Somehow it just wasn't on my radar for most of its run.  I"m not going to make that mistake with Now, which contains work by the likes of Eleanor Davis, Noah VanSciver, and Gabrielle Bell, all of whom are some of my favorite working cartoonists right now.  

The Mighty Thor #700 by Jason Aaron and Russel Dauterman, Published by Marvel Comics.
Thor is a character I really don't get because, before Jason Aaron, what was his story?  That very first Thor comic by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby basically set the character up for a history of very little internal conflict.  Even for as great as the Walt Simonson run is, it's very thin on doing much with the character of Thor.  Aaron has taken both the Odinson and Jane Foster and made them into compelling characters and has quietly made The Mighty Thor one of the best mainstream comics on the stands right now.

Wild Storm Volume 1 by Warren Ellis and Jon Hunt, Published by DC Comics
Warren Ellis and Jon Hunt's revamping of the Wildstorm universe has been an interesting experiment as Ellis' writing is awfully lean in this series.  It's like the distillation of everything that Ellis has been working on since wrapping up his seminal runs on Wildstorm's The Authority and Planetary.  This is one of those series that I'm not really too sure what's going on but there's some weird hook to it that I'm intrigued by.

James' Picks:

Low Vol. 4 by Rick Remender, Greg Tocchini, and Dave McCaig, Published by Image Comics.
Low has been a thoughtful, dark, contemplative story about regrets and consequences, which also happens to be a huge, sweeping undersea science fiction story. I've loved this collaboration between Remender and artist Greg Tocchini, and this story has real consequences and this most recent arc focusing on characters dealing with the aftermath of various characters' decisions. It's a great read, one that I think will particularly satisfying when reading whole arcs at once.

Made Men #2 by Paul Tobin and Arjuna Susini, Published by Oni Press.
This is a totally fun read. It's a crime story crossed with classic monsters. I've read the first 2 issues, and this is a highly engaging story. where the emotions very much feel realistic, even if the characters (e.g., the guy with lion head) do not. If you like monster and/or crime stories, Made Men is worth a look.

The Mighty Thor #700 by Jason Aaron, Walt Simonson, Olivier Coipel, Chris Burnham, James Harren and Russell Dauterman, Published by Marvel Comics.
Jason Aaron has really been on an epic run on Thor.  First, he told the story of Thor: God of Thunder which, when combined with Esad Ribic's art, was one of the most metal books I've ever read. And more recently, in The Mighty Thor, he's been telling the story of Jane Foster Thor, one of the most surprising developments of recent years but a terrific one. Aaron's story (primarily with the fantastic Russell Dauterman on art) has been really engaging in a totally different way. Jane-Thor is a wonderful character, that's been a great addition to Marvel's superheroes.

Dept. H #19 by Matt and Sharlene Kindt, Published by Dark Horse Comics.
I recently reread the first 2 arcs of this series and that gave me a greater appreciation for the book. I've been enjoying it the whole time, but it was an adjustment after reading Mind MGMT which is a world-spanning story of huge conspiracies, whereas Dept. H is more of a tense, locked-room murder mystery/disaster story interspersed with a look at the psychology and lives of the people involved in the story. It's a terrific story that very much succeeds at creating the tense atmosphere it's meant to capture, and this is thanks to the terrific art from Matt Kindt with gorgeous, intense watercolor colors from Sharlene Kindt. This is a thoughtful, intense book and I highly recommend it.