Catch It at the Comic Shop December 2nd, 2020

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...

Beth's Pick:

Batman Catwoman #1, by Tom King, Clay Mann, Tomeu Morey and Clayton Cowles, published by DC Comics
Giving a signal boost to this little indie book. I’m sure not many will pick up this comic, given the lead characters are so low profile and the creators are so untested. But hey, I’m always one to root for the underdog….I mean undercat….I mean…oh heck. It’s Batman. It’s Catwoman. It’s Tom King and Clay Mann. It’s Andrea Beaumont/Phantasm’s first appearance in the DC comic book universe. I’ll read it, you’ll read it, the squirrel eating that rotting leftover pumpkin on your porch will read it. The preview art looks beautiful, and even though these crazy kids didn’t actually get hitched, it’s gonna be romantic.

James' Picks:

Lumberjanes End of Summer #1 by Kat Leyh, Shannon Watters, Brooklyn Allen, Bosy, Kanesha Bryant, Maarta Laiho, published by Boom! Studios/Boom! Box

It's been a while since I read Lumberjanes, but I have a great deal of affection for this comic. It's one of the first comics I reviewed for Panel Patter, and it's one of the first comics that really got my daughters into reading comics generally. That, and Archie Comics.  I haven't read it recently, but what I read I always found to be a fun, sweet, clever, heartfelt story about girls/young women finding themselves, and adventure, and love, and also magic and monsters. We've since shared Lumberjanes with other younger kids in our lives, and I'm really interested to see how the story gets wrapped up.  Lumberjanes is a really special book, and one that I will continue to evangelize about after it's ended. 

Fantastic Four: Road Trip by Christopher Cantwell and Filipe Andrade, published by Marvel Comics

I haven't been all that enthusiastic about the current run on Fantastic Four. But I LOVE the characters, and their family/superhero/science adventurer dynamic. I have very much been enjoying the work of writer (and TV showrunner) Christopher Cantwell on the new Iron Man book (as well as his earlier Dark Horse books, She Could Fly and Everything).  Those earlier books are super weird and very engaging, and I'm excited to see Cantwell bring that weird energy to Marvel. And Filipe Andrade is a fantastic, very talented artist. So, the two of them working together on a weird FF road trip story where there's weird body horror and everything goes wrong?  Well, sign me up for that. 

Rob's Pick:

The Complete Hate by Peter Bagge, Published by Fantagraphics
It's a bit ironic that this new, deluxe edition is all fancy pants and ready for the mature comics reader to pick up and display on a bookshelf, like the aging Gen Xers we are, given that the stories themselves about Buddy, his friends, and family, are really the story of what everyone went through, both good and bad, comfortable, and (perfect for Bagge's style and premises) uncomfortable. These free-flowing drawings about people that anyone around my age all knew (and in some cases, totally are) are a chronicle of Bagge, too, and his perspectives. He and I don't always see eye to eye, but the Reason contributor and author of several recent biographies of women who might be unappealing to other creators is one of the best of his generation, and if you can afford this version, which contains all the issues, annuals, and other items, it's going to be a great piece of history. Or, should the world go to hell, an acceptable pillow/fuel/weapon. Bagge would surely approve.
Sean’s Picks:

Knock ‘em Dead #1 by Eliot Rahal, Mattia Monaco, Matt Milla & Taylor Esposito, published by Aftershock Comics

Pryor Brice wants to be a comedian. The thing is though... he’s pretty bad at being funny. Like really really bad. So what would any persistent person chasing their dream do in this case? Well, they’d start doing stand-up comedy of course! Some things happen fast that make the phrase “you killed it up there tonight, Pryor!” have a much more literal meaning than before. It’s a supernatural horror story with a comedic twist. I’m all over this one. And you should too.

Happy Hour #2 by Peter Milligan, Michael Montenat, Felipe Sobreiro & Rob Steen, published by Ahoy Comics

Last month’s debut set ground for a mini series that hit pretty close to home for me. Unhappiness is outlawed and the powers-that-be go to extreme measures in order to keep it that way. Jerry and Kim are the voices of pessimistic reason in the story as we follow them through another hilarious but chilling title from Ahoy.

Daredevil #25 by Chip Zdarsky, Mike Hawthorne & Marco Checchetto, published by Marvel

The “Doing Time” arc starts here and after the year that Matt has had (not to mention.. us) it’s only fitting to find himself behind bars... again. I’m a little apprehensive to be looking forward to another Daredevil story behind bars. But I trust this creative team and I love what they’ve done with the Hell’s Kitchen mythos. So I’ll stick around and see what happens here.

Mike's Picks:

Coffin Bound Volume 2: Dear God, by Dan Watters, Dani, Brad Simpson, Aditya Bidikar, and Emma Price, published by Image Comics
The Coffin Bound team could have continued to hammer on the same notion of existential dread as the first volume, and I still would have been incredibly impressed with the depth of the series, but Watters and team tap a different vein - pun intended - in volume two. Yes, it is definitely in the same end of the sandbox, but there is a different tone and a subsequent different direction for this book, one that sheds the Izzy's confrontation for Taqa's courtship. Watters plays with our curiosities, and the art team of Dani, Simpson, Bidikar, and Price match the musing on the macabre with an expertly paired aesthetic partner. I feel like this is the type of series we'll be returning to years on.

Wonder Woman: Dead Earth by Daniel Warren Johnson and Mike Spicer, published by DC Black Label
DWJ brings his signature style to Wonder Woman and the oversize Black Label magazine prestige format, and the results are exactly what you would expect - an intricately detailed and bombastic foray into a post-apocalyptic DC Universe. While DC too often dives too deeply into the grim and gritty, Wonder Woman: Dead Earth is a great example of how to do a serious story that can be serious without being pessimistic, that having a dark subject doesn't exclude bright colors. Johnson taps into the inherent hope that defines Diana's character and puts her through the wringer as she encounters Amazon mutant monsters and wasteland vistas in a way that on he can.