Comics Lead to a Life of Crime- Catch It at the Comic Shop July 7th, 2021

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...

Scott's Picks:

Bandette Volume 4: The Six Finger Secret by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover, published by Dark Horse.

I don't know if in the past 10 years that there have been any comics more charming than Tobin and Coover's Bandette. Tobin and Coover's Bandette looks so sweet and innocent but still has a slightly subversive side to it.  Coover's artwork has shades of Alex Toth in it, not so much in the style but in the economy of it, showing each panel and page in just the right number of lines and marks that are needed, no more and no less.  And Tobin's story has that delightful European crime flair to it, a bit of Fantomas meets The Amazing Spider-Man.  

Fire Power Volume 3: Flame War by Robert Kirkman, Chris Samnee, Matt Wilson, and Rus Wooton, published by Image Comics.

There is no Dad Comic quite like the Dad Comic that Kirkman and Samnee are currently creating here.  I wasn't that big of a fan of the first volume of this series that they published last summer (as seen here) but since then, this has actually been one of my favorite comics that I look forward to every month.  Samnee's art is just classic- clean and slick in a way that just feels like it's a classic in the making.  Kirkman is one of those hit-or-miss writers for me (mostly miss) but Owen and his family feel like a real family, fighting for each other. Like that first volume, the whole series suffers a bit too much from being too obvious in its influences but the introduction of the family creates some interesting stakes for this series that just wasn't present in that first volume.   

Mike’s Picks:

Alone in Space by Tillie Walden, published by Avery Hill

As a relative newcomer to the majesty that is Tillie Walden’s ability to render a narrative, I was rightfully mesmerized by this collection. It’s weird to look at her career in retrospect because her prolific and prodigious output belies the relatively short six years since the release of “The End of Summer,” the graphic novella that both opens this collection and skyrocketed Walden to success. Collecting Walden’s two first major works is worth the ticket price, for sure, but it’s the inclusion of many early comics - some magazine commissions, others from her high school sketchbooks - that are the real treasure of this collection. 

Holy Diver by Steve Niles, Scott Hampton, and Bill Sienkiewicz, published by Z2 Comics

I don’t know much about this actual comic itself, and I don’t know a ton about metal, either. What I do know is this: Dio lives forever; Holy Diver is a spectacular album; Steve Niles has both the music and horror chops to excel on this book; Scott Hampton knows how to draw otherworldly fantasy incredibly well; and Bill Sienkiewicz is Bill Sienkiewicz.  

Orwell by Pierre Christin, published by Self Made Hero

It’s kind of cliche to talk about how an Orwell book like 1984 or Animal Farm shaped one’s worldview, so I’ll pick Shooting and Elephant. But seriously, Orwell is a legendary figure whose own life likely matches the intrigue of his writing. This should be a quick but insightful look into Orwell’s life and career. 

Sean’s Picks:

Out of Body #2 by Peter Milligan, Inaki Miranda, Eva de la Cruz & Sal Cipriano and published by Aftershock

A psychic finds herself in between Dan, a man on his death bed after a mysterious accident, and a member of the occult who is working with a demon to capture the souls of those who have passed. Reasons for these souls needing to be captured and consumed is still mostly unknown, but what is known is that Dan’s occupation prior to the mysterious accident involved hallucinogenic psychotherapy by way of magic mushrooms. Miranda does an excellent job with illustrating Dan’s “trip” and I’m anxious to see what will come in his Out of Body experience as future issues unfold. Milligan’s script is as creepy as ever and I’m excited for the rest of the story.

Jenny Zero #3 (of 4) by Dave Dwonch, Brockton McKinney & Magenta King and published by Dark Horse

There’s a lot to gain from keeping up with this comic. One such insight will be that you’ll be keen to the fact that Magenta King is destined to become the next big thing in comics. If you’ve read the first two issues, you probably know why I give such high praise. If you haven’t yet read them, then ..give issue 3 a look and you’ll see why. But don’t you worry, comic readers, this title has much more to enjoy than only the illustrations themselves. This story of the drunken, hard-partying daughter of a superhero is a Kaiju fighting mini epic for the ages. Buckle up. This ones nearing its conclusion and you won’t want to miss out on one of the trippiest comics of the year.

Black’s Myth #1 by Eric Palicki, Wendell Cavalcanti & Rob Steen and published by Ahoy

Werewolf detective. Los Angeles. A djinn sidekick. Black’s Myth debuts at Ahoy this week and it gets going quick. Unlike most Ahoy titles, this comic trades out the quips for a black and white noir episodic storytelling of how one woman works her case as a werewolf on the streets of L.A. and I gotta say.. this first issue really grabbed me. The scripting by Palicki is paced perfectly with the [mostly] nine-paneled pages drawn in black and white by Cavacanti. The presentation of this comic is brilliant. The story is near flawless in this debut. Take a risk with me on this book; give it a try. Let’s show Ahoy we want more comics like this one. 

Rob's Picks:

Out of Body #2 by Peter Milligan, Inaki Miranda, Eva De La Cruz, and Sal Cipriano, published by Aftershock
A skeptic is on the verge of death, but it's not like anything he expected. As Dan's clinical mind works out the impossible, forces battle for his soul--and his brother battles to keep him alive--in a solid second issue that adds to the Aftershock horror line quite well. I'll be honest, it's been awhile since I really enjoyed a Peter Milligan comic, but he's won me over with this one. There's a ton of unanswered questions, with just enough teasing hints to keep the reader engaged. It's also not as bleak as his other recent series.  I really like how the astral scenes were put together in terms of Miranda's page layouts, with the person's "thoughts" shattering around the page. When combined with Miranda's solid linework that's enhanced by De La Cruz's colors, you have a comic that scratches the right horror mystery itch for me.