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.
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
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
BACK TO THE FUTURE TP VOL 05 TIME SERVED
TIME & VINE TP
TRANSFORMERS OPTIMUS PRIME TP VOL 02
RENATO JONES TP SEASON 02 (MR)
SAVAGE DRAGON ARCHIVES TP VOL 09 (MR)
SPY SEAL TP VOL 01 CORTEN-STEEL PHOENIX
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
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