Catch It at the Comic Shop December 11th, 2019

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 five items due out this week, with a little bit about why we like them. (NOTE: We use solicitation material for this, so if we miss creators, please talk to your publisher!) Sometimes we might only have a few items to share, other weeks, keeping it to five will make for hard choices. Here's what the team wanted to highlight this week...

James' Picks:

Dying is Easy #1 by Joe Hill and Martin Simmonds, published by IDW Publishing
This story has a fun hook: dirty cop turned standup comedian. Mostly I’m getting this because the title is funny, and I trust the creative team here. I’ve loved Joe Hill’s horror work on Locke and Key and more recently in Basketful of Heads, and I’m curious to read one of his crime stories (which will also presumably have a good dose of humor in it). And I recently loved Martin Simmonds’ work in Friendo, a terrifically weird series. So this was an easy call for me. I’m interested to check this out.

Superman #18 by Brian Michael Bendis, Ivan Reis and Joe Prado, published by DC Comics
I’ve overall been very much enjoying the Bendis Superman stories, some parts more than others. But this seems to be setting up a huge change in the Superman status quo. Apparently he’s going to reveal his secret identity to the world. Now, this was a storyline just a few years ago but my impression is that people in the DCU don’t generally seem to remember that information being revealed publicly. If they are going to do it, I say do it and  make it a long term choice. Secret identities aren’t the freshest of storylines, so I’m sure that there’s interesting story possibilities to be explored here.

The Dollhouse Family #2 by Mike Carey and Peter Gross, published by DC Comics/Black Label
So far I’m really enjoying these “Hill House” horror comics. Basketful of Heads is a really entertaining, weird story, and The Dollhouse Family definitely has a lot of sinister stuff going on as well. There are tiny actual people (or something that looks like tiny people) living in a girl’s dollhouse, and they’ve started talking to her and she can shrink down and visit with them. But there are other even weirder forces involved. It’s a very fun story, from the excellent creative team that brought you The Unwritten. This book has that fun Vertigo feel to it.I've also been loving the "Sea Dogs" serial story that's being told at the back of each Hill House comic. Those are illustrated by the fantastic Dan McDaid, whose work (Vandroid, The Fearsome Doctor Fang) I absolutely love.

Harley Quinn's Villain of the Year by Mark Russell and Mike Norton, published by DC Comics
This was a last minute addition for me. But if Mark Russell is writing a comic, I'm going to be reading it. DC has been having their "Year of the Villain" event this year with a series of one-shots. My favorite one thus far was a Sinestro one, written by (you guessed it) Mark Russell.  Russell is a hilarious writer who brings a ton if wit and sharp satire to any comic he's writing. The premise here is that Harley Quinn is hosting an award show for the villains. It sounds ridiculous and a lot of fun.

Far Sector #2 by N.K. Jemisin and Jamal Campbell, published by DC Comics
I don't particularly care about Green Lantern stories, but I decided to give the first issue of this series a look, and I'm so glad I did. This is the story of a Green Lantern who's been assigned to a city of billions of sentient beings, at the far end of the universe. And there's a murder, the first in centuries. It's a really interesting world and it requires no real prior knowledge of Green Lantern. The story from sci-fi author N.K. Jemisin was really smart and intersting and a lot of fun. And the art from Jamal Campbell was seriously incredible. It blew me away. I can't wait to read more, and to see what he draws next. This is a good pickup for any fan of smart sci-fi.