Comic book geekery

So, I’m a really big comic book fan. Really big. My week revolves around Wednesday, when the new books for the week hit shelves. I have thousands upon thousands of books in my collection. Lots of Daredevil, X-Men related stuff, quite a bit of Spider-Man. Spider-Woman, the new ongoing that started late last summer/early fall is my new favorite ongoing, mainly for the stunning art (Alex Maleev uses a live model for Jessica Drew/Spider-Woman, which is awesome). Daredevil and Uncanny/Legacy are my other favs. Daredevil is just so fucking heavy, and X-Men are what got me into comics in the first place (I remember Halloween of ’92-the premier of X-Men: TAS- like it was yesterday). I had huge crushes on Rogue and Gambit, who are still my two favorite comic book characters.

Anyway, the reason I’m talking about this is that I didn’t go to the comic book store on Wednesday because I was busy. The owner knows me, and he knows to pull all my books for me if I’m not there right when they open (I like to get first pick). So I stopped by today on my way to work and picked them up. I was especially delighted when I saw the cover for this month’s Iron Man, which featured none other than Dr. Stephen Strange! Dr. Strange is another favorite of mine, simply because I’m a writer and I know how much work it is to write for that character. In case you don’t know, Dr. Strange is a neurosurgeon who doesn’t have a traditional super power; instead, he’s a very powerful mage. This makes it difficult to write for him, as there are no rules that apply to him. He’s magic! He can do anything! This creates a dilemma, because when a writer is trying to create suspense or drama, inevitably a reader will say, “Why doesn’t he just cast a spell to make everything all better?” This requires some pretty creative writing to explain why he doesn’t do just that. He only appeared near the end of this issue, but I’m sure the next one will have him in a starring role. I really wish they’d start a new Dr. Strange ongoing.

Also this week was a new X-Men Forever. It’s a great semi-weekly ongoing written by none other than Chris Claremont, who X-Men fans know as the God of All X-Scribes. It’s classic X-Men. Wolverine dies in the first story arc, which excites me because I think Wolverine is a little overrated and the whole immortal thing was really annoying. In some books nothing can kill him! I say, if his brain is destroyed, he should die; without a nerve center, how does his healing ability even work? (It pissed me off in Fantastic Force when they had his skeleton walking around.) Who kills Wolverine? None other than Storm, who is evil in this book. But wait, is it really storm? While hunting evil Storm, Gambit stumbles upon a 12-year-old Ororo! Mysterious, no? It keeps getting better, but I won’t spoil any more. It’s pretty kid-friendly (at least more so than most books out these days), so it’s a good one if you’re looking for something for the youngsters.

Also out is Sky Doll: Doll’s Factory, which is the second half of the supplementary books to the very amazing, very beautiful, very X-rated Sky Doll limited from 2008. It’s got sketches, concepts, and studies; some mini-comics; and lots of fan art. Worth it for fans of the original book. I highly recommend looking for the trade if you missed it. It’s a stunning indie comic that Marvel picked up and gave a wider distribution, which is probably the only reason it found its way to Lincoln, NE (we don’t get a lot of indie comics out here, usually you have to go to Omaha).

And now my cat is making it hard to type, so I’m out.