Don't let Judgment Day make you a Human Target! Catch It for October 26th

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:

AXE: Judgment Day #6 by Kieron Gillen and Valerio Schiti, published by Marevel Comics
Judgment Day has been one of my favorite superhero events in a long time (written by Kieron Gillen and art by Valerio Schiti - a terrific team). It's been a story that brought together different groups of heroes/characters in a meaningful and organic way, and the stakes have been clear. There have been a lot of fun team-ups amongst different groups of characters that wouldn't normally interact, and the stakes for regular people in the world have also felt pretty clear. So, I totally recommend this book and I'm excited to see how it wraps up.

Barbaric: Axe to Grind #3 by Michael Moreci, Nathan Gooden, Addison Duke, and Jim Campbell, published by Vault Comics
I've really loved these arcs of Barbaric that we seem to get every year (well, last year and this year). It's a 3-issue arc, but each issue is oversized and is jam-packed with action. Barbaric is a fantastic series (my review of issue #1 here), about a barbarian who is a VERY reluctant hero. But he's out there, righting wrongs with his talking axe. It's a wonderful, funny, insightful story, with great characters and dialogue from writer Michael Moreci. And the art from Nathan Gooden (with colors from Addison Duke and letters from Jim Campbell) is really spectacular - detailed and visceral and full of personality. Gooden is amazing, and the whole series is a lot of fun.

Catwoman: Lonely City #4 by Cliff Chiang, published by DC Comics/Black Label
I am absolutely loving this series. Catwoman: Lonely City takes place ten years in the future of the DC universe, and Catwoman has come out of jail to a very changed world, but she's going to pull off one more heist. It's a fun setup, but that doesn't even really do the series justice. This is Cliff Chiang's first foray into comics writing but you wouldn't know it. He doesn't overwrite the series, and really does let the art tell the story. Which is great for Cliff Chiang, the artist! Because Chiang's work here is extraordinary. It really feels like it's never been better (which is absurd considering how amazing his prior work is) - he's at the top of his visual storytelling game, and the whole book is so gorgeous. This is such a fun read, any comics reader would love it.

Human Target #8 by Tom King and Greg Smallwod, published by DC Comics/Black Label
Speaking of DC Black Label comics that I love which have extraordinary art, Human Target is another must-read and one of my favorite comics of the year. I knew very little about the character of the Human Target, and that wasn't a problem for me, and it won't be a problem for you either. People hire him to impersonate them if they think someone is trying to kill them. And then he catches them, in some cases by "dying". That's it. But now the Human Target actually is dying, and he has 12 days to figure out who is responsible. That's the premise, and it's a terrific one. But also, this is among the most gorgeous comics you'll read. Seriously, Greg Smallwood has outdone himself. He conjures a world that is ostensibly set in the modern day but evokes the stylish 1960's. It's bright, lively work, with incredible style and panache and skill as a storyteller. I was such a huge fan of his work in the Moon Knight series he did with Jeff Lemire and Jordie Bellaire (read me going on and on about it here). He has a clean line, and immaculate character work, and his panel payout is incredibly interesting and innovative. You should also read his work in this Marvel series of stories. That Marvel series feels like it might have been something of the inspiration for the new Human Target series. You should pick up the hardcover collection of the first 6 issues and then catch up with issues 7 and 8. You're going to love it.