|Image from 'Tatsumi' directed by Eric Khoo|
Rakugo, or Fallen Words (Drawn & Quarterly), are stories that have been passed down through centuries where the storyteller is invited to make any alterations they see fit to suit their personality and/or the age in which they are telling the story. Presented in this book are eight classic moral comedies in the voice of the masterful Yoshihiro Tatsumi (see here for previous posts).
There's something about Roger Langridge's Snarked vol. 1 ( Kaboom) that feels like a wonderful melting pot of old and new all ages comics. Whether it be the character designs, the layouts or the style of humour Langridge's work feels timeless without shamefully copying or "paying homage". Loosely taken from the world of Lewis Carroll stories it follows Princess Scarlett, her baby brother and the infamous con-men Wilburforce J. Walrus and his sidekick Clyde McDunk as they search for Snarks and Red Kings.
The first in a planned four volume series, Tanpopo vol. 1 (Boom) by Camilla d'Errico draws on classic literature to tell the story of a girl, Tanpopo, who spends her life attatched to a machine until one day she breaks free and embarks on a journey to discover real humanity. There's also the release of the paperback edition of Locke and Key vol. 4: Keys To The Kingdom (IDW) of the excellent horror series that was considered too smart for TV!
The New DC line begins to emerge blinking against the sunlight into the world of graphic novels most of which will be paperback, a few in hardback. This week Justice League vol. 1: Origin inevitably gets the plush hardcover treatment. It's a perfect jumping on point of course as it features the first time these characters meet and when you throw in the fact that it's by superstar creative dream team Geoff Johns and Jim Lee, it deserves to be a big seller for many years to come. The other notable release, this one a paperback, is the highly acclaimed Animal Man vol. 1: The Hunt. It's really worth giving this a look for Jeff Lemire's sensitive story-telling and Travel Foreman's excellent, creepy artwork.
So howzabout the Weeklies? Ed Brubaker accepts the writing baton in Avengers vs. X-Men #3 (Marvel). As the fighting intensifies, time's running out for the two warring sides to put their heads together to find a solution to the unstoppable Phoenix Force. It takes a tough character to draw Garth Ennis back to the Marvel - Nick Fury is that character in Fury Max #1 illustrated by Ennis's sometime Punisher collaborator Goran Parlov. World's Finest #1 (DC) sees Power Girl & Huntress arrive on Earth in much more seemly costumes; by Paul Levitz, George Perez & Kevin McGuire. And finally Dial H #1 (DC) begins anew about a device that can turn you (yes, you!) into a super-hero leading to some interesting super-creations and something of a morality tale. Novelist China Mieville is joined by newcomer Mateus Santolouco.
Full list of titles under the tab at the top of the page.