21st Jun2017

Panel Discussion #37

by Kieran Shiach

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Hello again, and welcome to the recently resurrected Panel Discussion. I’m Kieran, and every week I’m going to go through some of the best comics of the week to give you an idea what you should pick up that you might have missed. This is another stacked week with some fantastic first issues and great jumping on points for books you might be behind on, so let’s take a look at what’s on offer.

The biggest release of the week again goes to DC Comics for Tom King, David Finch, Danny Miki and Jordie Bellaire’s Batman #25 which kicks off the massive new storyline, “The War of Jokes and Riddles”. It feels like absolutely ages since we got a great straightforward Joker story or a great straightforward Riddler story so getting both at the same time feels like an absolute treat. Not only that, but the story has already promised to bring in players from all over Gotham including Deathshot, Deathstroke and of course, Kite-Man. This is going to go down as an iconic Batman story that you’re not going to want to miss out on, so grab this issue today.

The second big release of the week is Chip Zdarksy and Adam Kubert’s Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #1 which is conveniently timed to come out just weeks before the brand new motion picture. Zdarsky proved that he had the skill to write Spider-Man in the pages of Howard The Duck and his love for the character is evident, even if he dunks on him constantly. While one of Marvel’s top-tier artists, Adam Kubert is underrated as a Spidey penciller even though his work on Astonishing Spider-Man and Wolverine was one of the best Spider-Man comics of the past decade. While he does great work here, his classic superhero style doesn’t quite gel with Zdarsky’s comedy chops but each creator has tweaked their traditional style to accommodate their collaborator in new ways, which is always the sign of a great book.

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If you’ve been sleeping on Dan Abnett’s run on Aquaman this week’s Aquaman #25 is a brilliant jumping on point thanks to the arrival of Stjepan Šejić who breathes new life into the underwater world of Atlantis as a deposed Arthur Curry grows a sweet looking beard and tries to get his throne back. Šejić is an artist known for his love of DC Comics characters thanks to his prolific fan-art output and it’s a massive surprise they haven’t recruited him sooner. Abnett has been building a long-form story in the pages of Aquaman to rival his work on Guardians of the Galaxy and Legion of Super-Heroes so this is a jumping on point you absolutely don’t to miss.

Lastly, I have to shout-out Image Comics’s new release, Shirtless Bear Fighter (Shirtless Bear Fighter #1 review) by Jody Leheup, Sebastian Girner, Mike Spicer and Nil Vendrell, which is exactly what it says on the tin. It feels like a throwback to the Image Comics of ten years ago that didn’t quite have the identity it does now and was trying a bunch of new stuff that led to comics like Proof and Firebreather and if that’s the sort of thing you’re into or just if the name catches your eye, you’ll want to at least give this first issue a shot and see if it’s for you/

That’s it for me this week but there’s still a great number of awesome comics on the stands for you to check out. Happy reading everyone, and I’ll see you all next week!

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