Pick Of The Week: Our Three Top Titles From The Past Week’s New Releases

by Olly MacNamee

I don’t know whether it’s because of the season, but this week seemed to deliver some pretty great comics. Its as tough to whittle down to just three, but we did. So, if you are visiting your local store this Holiday season you won’t go wrong buying these recommendations from my good self and fellow reviewer Rachel Bellwoar.

So, what are we suggesting you look out for while supporting your comic book retailers?

Cover Art: Jenny Frison

Jim Henson’s Labyrinth: Masquerade #1 (Boom! Studios – Archaia)

Written by Lara Elena Donnelly

Illustrated by Pius Bak, Samantha Dodge, and French Carlomagno

Colored by Francesco Segala and Fabiana Mascolo

Letters by Jim Campbell

Until now, the idea of a Labyrinth sequel has always seemed misguided to me. Besides the problem of recasting David Bowie’s Jareth, would a new film be as invested in practical effects? Labyrinth: Masquerade has made me realize how much of the Labyrinth universe is yet to be explored and If you’re a doubter, I highly recommend picking this one-shot up. In it Donnelly focuses on one of Jareth’s goblin servants as well as one of the guests from his masquerade ball. While usually three artists means three different stories, the other cool thing about this comic is that it’s one story that naturally moves between three locations. Bak and Segala are responsible for the cellar scenes, Dodge and Mascolo cover the ball, and Carlomagno and Mascolo are in charge of the junkyard. Through it all Campbell’s letters are animated and present, including a Wizard of Oz, “man behind the curtain” joke that’s amusing. – Rachel Bellwoar

Dark Nights: Death Metal: The Secret Origin #1 (DC Comics)

Written by Geoff Johns and Scott Snyder 

Illustrated by Jerry Ordway, Francis Manapul, Ryan Benjamin, Richard Friend, Paul Pelletier, Norm Rapmund

Essentially this one-shot is a drawn out battle between The Batman Who Laughs and Superboy Prime, but with a wholly appropriate sentimental payoff at the end. Unloved and untrusted by his fellow multiverses Supermen, one imagines Superboy Prime to once again lose it in dramatic and damaging fashion, only for man’s best friend to be the calming influence. That’s right, Krypto comes comes to the rescue! Who would have seen that one coming, right? 

On one level this is the story of Superboy Prime’s return to the DCU. A character whom in Geoff Johns’ hands became a walking, talking metacommentary on a particularly toxic kidult sector of the comic book buying public. And here again, Johns is making use of Superboy Prime in a very similar metatextual way. One feels that this is a far more personal story for Johns than any others he has scripted in recent years. His way of putting the toys back in the box and resolving the headache Superboy Prime has felt ever since his return from his post-Crisis on Infinite Earths exile courtesy of Johns.

In giving this Clark Kent a well deserved happy ever after – after all, in this new DCU where every story counts –  Johns seems to be making peace with DC Comics at the same time through Superboy Prime’s presentation here.

A heart-warming, emotional letter from Johns to the fans, and a must for all DC fans!

The Department of Truth #4 (Image Comics)

Written by James Tynion IV

Art by Martin Simmonds

Another mighty fine issue with our Black Ops’ characters listening in on a couple of paranoid journals as they discuss… well, what else? Conspiracies!

I found there to be something deliciously ironic in an issue wherein the journalist are posed as silhouettes while the real undercover operatives are depicted in full. Although, as the issue progresses all that exposition and explanation takes a darker turn. After all, lest we forget, the Department of Truth is a shady operation much like the CIA or the FBI. And, last time I checked, both of those great American institutions have blood on their hands. Why would this government operation not?

he Department of Truth #4 is another great instalment in this already critically-acclaimed new series. And, while the office talk in this issue purposefully draws you in, it’s all done to better serve the dramatic ending and have you asking, as Cole himself must be, who are the good guys, again?

For the full review head on ore to here.


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