New Comic Book Day is upon us again, though for those of us in the UK, books might not be on shelves until Thursday due to shipping delays caused by the Queen’s Jubilee. While UK comic book fans cry into their pints and toast to the Queen, the rest of the world can look forward this week’s stellar line-up of new releases.
1) Before Watchmen: Minutemen #1 – Darwyn Cooke kicks off one of the year’s most highly anticipated events with Before Watchmen: Minutemen #1. DC’s controversial decision to launch a series of Watchmen prequels against the wishes of the title’s creator, Alan Moore, has ignited a passionate discussion about rights, contracts, and ethics in the comic book world. Regardless of where your opinion lies on the spectrum, it’ll be hard to ignore Cooke’s take on Hollis Mason’s Under the Hood, the autobiography of the first Nite Owl featured in the original Watchmen. Cooke travels back in time to the 1930’s to chronicle the careers of the original Minutemen, including the enigmatic Silhouette.
2) Creator Owned Heroes #1 – Image Comics is introducing a new kind of monthly comic with Creator Owned Heroes, a 40 page mix of comics and magazine style features. This month, Jimmy Palmiotti, Justin Gray, and Phil Noto bring us the adventures of the eponymous, genetically-modified, white-haired assassin, Trigger Girl 6, whose life takes a turn for the complex when she gets too close to her target. In “American Muscle,” Steve Niles and Kevin Mellon tell the story of a group of survivors searching for Paradise in a post-apocalyptic American wasteland. The issue will also feature an interview with award-winning author, Neil Gaiman.
3) Harbinger #1 – Valiant Entertainment unites comic books and mobile technology with the first issue of the rebooted Harbinger. The QR Voice Variant cover will serve as the reader’s first introduction to Toyo Harada, head of the Harbinger Foundation and mentor to series protagonist and unlikely hero Peter Stanchek. When Peter discovers his psionic powers, he’s thrown into a world rife with danger and conspiracy, where nothing is what it seems. New York Times bestselling writer Joshua Dysart will be joined by the Harvey Award nominated artist, Khari Evans.
4) Earth 2 #2 – Earlier this week, DC finally revealed the identity of its mystery gay character: Golden Age Green Lantern, Alan Scott. And it isn’t just his sexual orientation that’s receiving a reboot. The much younger Alan Scott will be joining Mr. Terrific and The Flash (Jay Garrick) as they face down a threat even more terrifying than the wrath of Apokolips. Writer James Robinson and artist Nicola Scott continue to deliver the goods in DC’s latest foray into the multiverse.
5) Avengers VS. X-Men #5 – Marvel’s latest crossover event comes to a head with Avengers VS. X-Men #5, which will serve as the conclusion of Act One. Artist John Romita Jr. will be joined by new writer Matt Fraction of Uncanny X-Men and The Invincible Iron Man and together, they’ll lead readers on an adventure with farreaching implications for the Marvel universe as the Phoenix finally takes its host. Maybe. Be sure to pick up the issue this Wednesday to find out!