Tradewaiting – January 24th, 2018 Releases: The Forgotten New Mutants, The World’s Most Beautiful Aquaman & More

by Noah Sharma

A lot of comics come out every week. It’s easy to get lost in the sea of #1s and dramatic new status quos as they crash. That’s why I’m here. Whether you said you’d revisit checking that series out when it was collected in trade, or you simply never noticed the announcement of that awesome OGN, whether you’re just waiting for that hardcover to come out in trade, or have been longing for a collection of your favorite stories since childhood, Tradewaiting is here for you, with the complete Diamond list of graphic novels and collections as well as some recommendations to scoop up.

So, without further ado, here’s what’s coming to the bookshelves of your LCS this fine week of January 24th, 2018.

HIGHLIGHTS

Aquaman vol. 4: Underworld

Aquaman fans are living in something of a golden age. Not only are we finally getting reprints of classic stories that were last collected in the early 2000s, if at all, but we’re getting a particularly solid run in the Aquaman ongoing as well. Dan Abnett has been doing some interesting things with the character and his world ever since ‘Rebirth’ began, but the series truly become a must-read with this section.

One of Aquaman’s greatest problems as a character is how repetitive some of his stories can be. There’s the adventuring Aquaman story, the loving husband and father Aquaman story, the ‘heavy is the head’ king Aquaman story, the deposed king Aquaman story, and so on and every time one of these concepts is done again it must compete against every other version. It’s a legitimate issue, but “Underworld” is perhaps the best of the deposed Aquaman adventures, calling on subtle knowledge of the character and some fantastic classic superhero elements that have rarely been used in the Atlantean context.

Here we find King Arthur Curry thought dead and deposed, only for a shadowy ‘Aquaman’ to appear among Atlantis’ poorest and most oppressed to protect the people from the new king’s totalitarian rule. And as ‘Orin’ navigates the bottom of Atlantis’ foodchain, Vulko and King Rath’s advisors shuffle for power as Rath’s obsessive vision for his kingship leaves the fate of Atlantis uncertain.

But, as wonderful as the ideas presented in this arc are, there’s no denying that a huge part of its success and its appeal lies with Stjepan Sejic, who makes this one of the most gorgeous interpretations of Aquaman ever. Sejic’s digitally illustrated style has been rightfully respected for a long time, but the wild creatures and underwater beauty of Atlantis helps make this a notable work, even for him. Sejic’s arrival marks Underworld as the start of a true event and his specific emotions and clever use of light, texture, and sound effects blow me away every time I open an issue.

Aquaman: Underworld is available this week for the fairly standard $17.99. Just be warned, you may come out of it an Aquaman fan…

New Mutants: Back To School – The Complete Collection

It is likely that nothing will ever fully capture the magic of Chris Claremont’s original incarnation of the New Mutants. Marvel Graphic Novel #4 was perhaps the first comic I ever loved and I remain proud of my taste to this day. But the New Mutants didn’t end when Sienkiewicz left, they didn’t end when Louis Simonson took over writing chores, they didn’t end when THE MAN CALLED CABLE came to call, and they didn’t even end when they were reorganized into that most 90s of superteams, X-Force. No, instead they just went their separate ways, children no longer. But over ten years after the last issue of the original series, the New Mutants returned.

New Mutants vol 2 aimed to do a few things. Firstly it looked at members of the original cast, so defined by being the lesser X-Men, years later, in a world where there was an X-team everywhere you looked. Seeing Dani Moonstar and Xi’an Coy Mahn finding their place within the Xavier’s ecosystem was lovely. But perhaps more importantly, it also looked to the future, introducing a slew of new characters that have become staples of the brand. Ever enjoyed a story with Elixer? Surge? Anole? Hellion? Did you like Young Avengers? Cause Prodigy showed up here first! Admittedly some of these characters weren’t at full strength right out of the gate, but seeing them not only at their beginnings but in starring roles is fantastic fun.

New Mutants vol. 2 was one of the first X-Men titles to really lead with the kind of young superhero school drama that we so associate with the brand with. This isn’t really one for those looking to see fights with Magneto or the Silver Samurai or even weird showdowns like the Demon Bear, instead its focus is on exploring these characters and their place in the world as they butt heads against each other and encounter a world that hates and fears them. Though there are certainly elements that feel dated (some that even felt dated upon release), Nunzio DeFillippis and Christina Weir deliver on what fans want from a young X-Men title in a big way and that’s what makes it crazier that this first series has, to all indications, never been collected before.

With all thirteen issues of New Mutants vol. 2 and a couple of reunion issues by Chris Claremont and Bill Sienkiewicz, New Mutants: Back to School is pretty cheap at $34.99. If you’re a fan of mutant teen drama or any of the wonderful characters featured in this run, this may be one of the trades you never knew you needed.

*****

It’s a good week for trades, with plenty at DC, new books from franchises like Transformers and Predator, and a big indie release in the form of Mine!. Here’s Diamond’s complete listing of collections and graphic novels for those looking for something a little more complete this week.

DARK HORSE COMICS

ONLY END OF THE WORLD AGAIN HC

PREDATOR HUNTERS TP

DC COMICS

AQUAMAN TP VOL 04 UNDERWORLD (REBIRTH)

CHECKMATE BY GREG RUCKA TP VOL 02

GREEN ARROW THE ARCHERS QUEST TP NEW ED

HELLBLAZER TP VOL 18 THE GIFT (MR)

LOBO BY KEITH GIFFEN & ALAN GRANT TP VOL 01

SAVAGE THINGS TP (MR)

SUPERMAN THE GOLDEN AGE OMNIBUS HC VOL 05

IDW PUBLISHING

BACK TO THE FUTURE TP VOL 05 TIME SERVED

TIME & VINE TP

TRANSFORMERS OPTIMUS PRIME TP VOL 02

IMAGE COMICS

RENATO JONES TP SEASON 02 (MR)

SAVAGE DRAGON ARCHIVES TP VOL 09 (MR)

SPY SEAL TP VOL 01 CORTEN-STEEL PHOENIX

MARVEL COMICS

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN WORLDWIDE TP VOL 07

GUARDIANS OF GALAXY TELLTALE GAMES TP

IMMORTAL IRON FISTS MPGN TP

IRON MAN EPIC COLLECTION TP DOOM

NEW MUTANTS COMPLETE COLLECTION TP BACK TO SCHOOL

PUNISHER TP VOL 03 KING OF NEW YORK STREETS

WOLVERINE OLD MAN LOGAN TP VOL 06 DAYS OF ANGER

WOLVERINE OLD MAN LOGAN TP VOL 06 DAYS OF ANGER B&W DM

X-MEN GOLD TP VOL 03 MOJO WORLDWIDE

COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS

ADVENTURE TIME ORIGINAL GN VOL 11 PRINCESS & PRINCESS

ARCHIE GIANT COMICS ROLL TP

ARCHIES BIG BOOK TP VOL 02 FANTASY

COURTNEY CRUMRIN GN VOL 02 THE COVEN OF MYSTICS

DISHONORED PEERESS AND THE PRICE HC

FAIRY GODBROTHERS GN

FAIRY TAIL GN VOL 63

FRAU FAUST GN VOL 03

INCIDENTALS TP VOL 01 POWERS LIES SECRETS

JUANA & DRAGONEWTS SEVEN KINGDOMS GN VOL 01

LAST LEAF LISAS STORY CONCLUDES TP

LIE & HOW WE TOLD IT HC (MR)

LISAS LEGACY TRILOGY HC SLIPCASE ED

MINE CELEBRATION OF LIBERTY & FREEDOM FOR ALL GN (MR)

MOORCOCK LIB CORUM HC VOL 01

MY NEIGHBOR SEKI GN VOL 10

NOW #2

OLYMPIANS GN VOL 10 HERMES TALES OF TRICKSTER

OLYMPIANS HC GN VOL 10 HERMES TALES OF TRICKSTER

PLUM CRAZY TALES OF TIGER STRIPED CAT GN VOL 04

POGO COMP SYNDICATED STRIPS HC BOX SET VOL 3 & 4 (RES)

PRELUDE LISAS STORY BEGINS TP

PROJECT SUPERPOWERS HERO KILLERS TP

PUPPET MASTER CURTAIN CALL TP

ROBERT MOSES MASTER BUILDER NYC GN

SEVEN DEADLY SINS GN VOL 24

SOULWIND HC (MR)

THE ALTERED HISTORY OF WILLOW SPARKS GN

WIRES AND NERVE GN VOL 02 GONE ROGUE

WITCH PT 2 NERISSAS REVENGE GN VOL 01

WITCH PT 2 NERISSAS REVENGE GN VOL 02

WITCH PT 2 NERISSAS REVENGE GN VOL 03

WWE ONGOING TP VOL 02

X-O MANOWAR (2017) TP VOL 03 EMPEROR