Some Comics in Brief, 12/5/20

I’ve been working my way through random comics that I’ve had in my collection or picked up at random at my LCS’s recent huge mega Thanksgiving weekend sale. But with the exception of the ones I have already sat down and written about, I can’t say that I have it in me to write about each of them in an individual capacity, so here we go with another “group review” so I can feel like I can “log” these and move on.

As I have done in the past, the rating will be after the description. And special thanks to Professor Alan, who sent me a number of these comics.

Arak: Son of Thunder #36 (DC): This is just an issue that fills in the gap in my collection. I’ve actually got most of the 30s of this title (and have to do a recount of the issues that I do have and update my want list) and it’s been a solid performer. This one holds up along with the rest as it features Arak fighting against some sort of snake-man creature in the midst of his quest. I think this is one of those series I will continue to grab and then do a complete read-through once I’ve done it. I might even take a few issues to get signed if Ron Randall winds up at the Baltimore Comic-Con again. Keep.

Deadshot #1 (DC): This was the first issue of a four-issue miniseries that came out in 1988 during the height of the Ostrander Suicide Squad run. If I’m being a Suicide Squad completist (at least for this title), then I am going to have to continue collecting the series. Unfortunately, that is easier said than done because the book and Deadshot are hot enough to command better back issue prices than the quarter I paid for this rather crappy copy (the cover is white and clearly is dirty in some regard). It’s a pretty good comic and exactly what I expected from Ostrander, Yale, and McDonnell, but I don’t know if I want to pay more than a dollar for each of the other three issues. Keep and collect if I find it on the cheap.

Firestar #2 (Marvel) Spinning out of Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, which is a cartoon I absolutely loved when I was a little kid, this 1986 miniseries was, I guess, a way to bring her truly into the Marvel Universe courtesy of the X-Men books. She’s a student at Emma Frost’s school and is going through a lot of training without realizing that she’s being trained to take on the X-Men and the New Mutants (who are supporting characters). Tom DeFalco’s scripting is solid (and doesn’t suffer from the verbosity of Chris Claremont’s) and Mary Wilshire’s are is very nice. This is another, like the Deadshot series, that I don’t know if I can readily find in a quarter bin, but I’m definitely going to look for it because I have always been curious about this one. Keep and Collect.

The War of the Worlds (Classics Illustrated): Classics Illustrated tend to be hit or miss, but this one is one of the better ones. Granted, that may be because I’m a big fan of Wells’ novel (unlike certain podcast co-hosts of mine). And while the story and artwork are done in the most utilitarian way possible, I found it fun to read and I made a note to track down the Marvel Classics Comics version. Keep.

Marvel Classics Comics #23 (Marvel): Featuring an adaptation of the Wilkie Collins’ novel Moonstone, this is a rare miss from a series I have really come to enjoy. I think it’s because I wasn’t that interested in the source material, which is a mystery novel about how a family comes into possession of a cursed gem and some really weird crap happens when it goes missing. Oh, and because this is a 19th Century English novel, there are moors. It’s skippable if you just come across this issue, but I’m going to leave this one in my classroom with the other adaptation comics I own. Keep.

Dracula #1-4 (Marvel): A reprint of the 1970s adaptation of Bram Stoker’s horror classic that is written by Roy Thomas with art by Dick Giordano. This one has been reprinted on better paper and recolored, although I’m not the biggest fan of the recoloring because it doesn’t look right. Still, with the two at the top of their Seventies game, Thomas and Giordano capture the true essence of Stoker’s novel and the series moves along at a really good clip. It’s one of the better adaptations of Dracula because it doesn’t try to modernize the tale or overemphasize some random aspect of it to make it more exciting. This would be one of the more modern books you might find on the cheap and I know that it’s been reprinted in various collections as well, so I would actively look for it. Keep.

Michael Moorcock’s Elric: The Sailor on the Seas of Fate #1 (First Comics): An indie that I often saw advertised in Starslayer, I grabbed this comic out of the cheap bins. Roy Thomas’ script that adapted a fantasy novel that I’d actually never heard of. The name sounded familiar and Michael T. Gilbert’s cover art was definitely attractive. I’m torn, though, on whether or not I should seek out the rest of this series or any of the other Moorcock adaptations. Maybe I’ll give it time and see if I can find it. Keep and Collect if cheap.

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