Whether or not you are a comic book die-hard, shouldn’t it be an easy thing to say, “Hey, what comic book collected editions are out this Wednesday? Is there a list? Do you think I would like any of them?”
I think it should by easy. And it… kind of is? Previews Magazine has all of the solicits listed, but you can’t actually buy anything from it unless you’ve ordered months in advance through a direct market comic shop. Otherwise, you’re just window-shopping, without even ISBN numbers to guide you.
Plus, the schedule can change literally up until the last day before release. Plus, each publisher releases books at different intervals to the mass market – Dark Horse has some books out this week, DC’s are all next week, and Marvel two weeks from now.
No wonder there’s no easy-to-consume list and relatively few blogs covering the entirety of it.
Luckily, you have this massively obsessed human being to help you out with that. This post covers all of the collections out this week, explains what they are and what they contain, and provides easy links to Amazon, where you can either buy them or at least get more helpful info like their prices and ISBNs.
- Dark Horse
- Image Comics
- Marvel Comics
- Valiant Entertainment – No books this week!
- Other Publishers
What are the must-read books this week?
Different people in different parts of the world have different ideas of what constitutes a “graphic novel.”
In the US we tend to think of them as collections of individual comics, or less often as singular works like Maus or John Lewis’s March. In Europe, they are “graphic albums” of original work. In Japan, they might be a single Manga book or a massive omnibus.
No matter the definition, just as Will Eisner’s historic work helped to define the comic medium in the 40s, so did his graphic novel A Contract with God and Other Tenement Stories literally coined the term “graphic novel” in the US when it was released, partially due to Eisner’s wish that his work be marketed to traditional book shops rather than newsstands and the direct market.
A new volume, Will Eisner’s Contract With God Other Tenement Stories hardcover, collects this work with newly-scanned art and a introduction by comic storyteller and academic Scott McCloud.
It is a collection of four grounded, philosophical, and frankly sexual stories from the same tenement building in Brooklyn, occupied by Jewish-American immigrants and first generation citizens.
Also, the collector in me can’t help but highlight The Chronicles of Conan Volume 34: Betrayal in Zamora and Other Stories. That’s right, Volume Thirty Four. It’s the final Dark Horse volume collecting Marvel’s 25-year run on Conan the Barbarian,
To celebrate it’s release, I crafted my very own Guide to Conan to help you find the 33 other volumes (and what they contain).
And now, onto the full list of books!
Dark Horse collected editions generally hit the mass market two weeks after the direct market, but some of their media tie-in properties get a same-day release in both direct and mass markets.
Bounty Volume 1 – Collects Bounty #1-6 by by Kurtis Wiebe (of Rat Queens), Mindy Lee, and Leonardo Olea. Wiebe has a great track record of writing women protagonists and centering his female collaborators, but not such a great rep when it comes to his stick-to-it-ness on his books in the long term (see his Peter Panzerfaust limping across the finish line, below). This book about a pair of space bounty-hunters is bursting with cartoonish energy and has been generally well-reviewed, if not raved-about like Rat Queens.
The Chronicles of Conan Volume 34: Betrayal in Zamora and Other Stories – The final volume collecting Marvel’s 25-year run on Conan the Barbarian, this collects Conan the Barbarian (1970) #268-275! See the brand-new Guide to Conan for more information.
Will Eisner: A Centennial Celebration hardcover – Collects selected Eisner illustrations.
World of Warcraft Chronicle Volume 2 Hardcover – A compilation of designs and history of the game; this is out on the same day in both the direct and mass markets.
It’s an unusual week for DC, with four hardcovers out and three of them containing older reprint material. DC Collected Editions hit the mass market one week after the direct market, so these books are available from Amazon on March 21. See Crushing Comics – Guide to Collecting DC Comics for more on DC’s collected editions.
Batman: Ego and Other Tails Deluxe Edition hardcover – I’m suspicious as to whether this book is out this week, as it’s been pushed back to March 29th per Amazon. It collects Darwyn Cooke Bat-family tales from prior to his landmark New Frontier from Batman: Ego, Catwoman: Selina’s Big Score, black and white material from Batman: Gotham Knights #23 & 33, and stories from Solo #1 & 5. This book has already been out in hardcover and paperback.
Jack of Fables The Deluxe Edition Book 1 hardcover – The first of three oversized hardcovers collecting this Fables spin-off, this volume includes Jack of Fables (2006) #1-16
JSA: The Golden Age Deluxe Edition hardcover – Collects The Golden Age (1993) #1-4 by James Robinson and Paul Smith, previously available in a 1990s paperback (which remained in print as late as 2003)!
Justice League of America: Power & Glory hardcover – Collects all of the 2015 iteration of Bryan Hitch’s Justice League (not to be confused with the 2013 edition), which was rudely interrupted by Rebirth to be replace by yet more Bryan Hitch Justice League in 2016. Confused yet? This collects Justice League of America (2015) #1-4 & 6-10. Where is #5, you might inquire? It’s a Martian Manhunter story collected in Martian Manhunter, Volume 2: The Red Rising. See DC New 52 for more information.
IDW collected editions generally hit the mass market two weeks after the direct market. A significant amount of IDW books are direct market-only, especially their high-end hardcovers.
Haunted Love, Vol. 1 – This bares the name of Charlton Comics’ Haunted Love (1973), but it really reprints IDW’s Haunted Love (2016), which itself is a reprint series of classic pre-Code horror comics from the late 40s and early 50s.
Image Comics collected editions generally hit the mass market one week after the direct market.
Blood Stain Volume 2 – by Linda Sejic
Deadly Class Volume 5 – Collects Deadly #22-26 by Rick Remender and Wes Craig
Demonic – Collects Demonic #1-6 by Christopher Sebela, Niko Walter, Dan Brown, and created by Walking Dead‘s Robert Kirkman.
Peter Panzerfaust Volume 5: On ‘Till Morning – Collects Peter Panzerfaust (2012) #21-25 by Kurtis J. Wiebe and Tyler Jenkins. This is great news, as many fans thought this Peter Pan at war series was left for dead. when it stalled out back in 2014.
Marvel Comics collected editions hit the mass market two weeks after the direct market, so these books are available from Amazon on March 28. See Crushing Comics – Guide to Collecting Marvel Comics for more on Marvel’s collected editions.
Avengers: The Initiative – The Complete Collection Vol. 1 – Collects Avengers: The Initiative (2007) #1-19 & Annual 1.
This post-Civil War series collected various youthful flotsam from around the Marvel Universe into a specific training ground that seemed to be more full of mishaps and machinations than it was of credible hero-making. This series is a snappy read thanks to writing by Amazing Spider-Man‘s Dan Slott and his frequent partner, Christos Gage.
If you enjoyed Captain America: Civil War but feel like Iron Man’s final scene was missing (as opposed to Cap’s), this is for you. Read more in the Young Avengers Guide.
Deadpool Classic Vol. 17: Headcanon – Collects out-of-continuity stories from Deadpool: Wade Wilson’s War #1-4, Deadpool Pulp #1-4, Night Of The Living Deadpool #1-4, Return Of The Living Deadpool #1-4. See the Guide to Deadpool for the complete Classic line.
Excalibur Epic Collection: The Sword is Drawn (Epic Vol. 1) – Collects Captain Britain (1976) #1-2; Excalibur (1988) #1-11, Special Edition, Mojo Mayhem; and material From Mighty World Of Marvel #7, 14-15; and (for the first time!) Marvel Comics Presents (1988) #31-38.
This is my favorite comic run of all time, so don’t expect me to be objective about it at all, all right? In the wake of Mutant Massacre, wounded X-Men Nightcrawler and Kitty Pryde are shipped off to Muir Island to convalesce, where they join forces with Captain Britain and Meggan. This is a very British, very punny comic book unlike any X-Men title that came before. Read my Most Wanted Omnibuses of 2016 write-up to learn more, or head to the Excalibur Guide to see other ways to collect this material.
Gwenpool, The Unbelievable Vol. 2: Head of M.O.D.O.K. – Collects Unbelievable Gwenpool #5-10.
This is a silly series about a character who cosplays as Gwen Stacy dressed as Deadpool. Sort of. It’s not quite as all-ages oriented as, say, Moon Girl or Hellcat
I’m tacitly tracking this in the Deadpool Guide in the Alternate Realities section, as at first glance it seemed to be out of continuity with most Marvel books. However, that has been proven to be not the case.
Women of Power: The Women of Marvel Standee Punch-Out Book – A book of heavy-duty cardboard doll punch-outs of Marvel’s most popular female heroes.
Shh, I might buy it.
Marvel Universe Avengers: Ultron Revolution Vol. 2 – Collects the all-ages Marvel Universe Avengers: Ultron Revolution (2016) #5-8
Wolverine vs. the Marvel Universe – Collects famous Wolverine battles from Captain America Annual 8, Daredevil (1964) #249, Spider-Man Vs. Wolverine, Incredible Hulk (1968) #340, Wolverine (1988) #134, Wolverine vs. Thor #1-3, Marvel Universe Vs. Wolverine #1-4, and material from Marvel Comics Presents (1988) #117-122.
Notable, Wolverine vs. Thor and the MCP material is newly printed in this collection! See the Guide to Wolverine for more.
Nothing from Valiant this week! Valiant Entertainment collected editions generally hit the mass market two weeks after the direct market. See Guide to Valiant Comics for more information about Valiant Entertainment collected editions.
Books from First Second, Oni, Avatar, and more!
Gauguin: The Other World (Art Masters Series, Vol. 5) (SelfMadeHero) – I’m fascinated by the idea of a graphic novel biography of famous artists, in the style of and using excerpts of their work. Previous editions focused on Dalí, Munch, Picasso, and van Gogh
Bad Machinery Volume 1 – Pocket Edition: The Case of the Team Spirit (Oni Press) – Collecting the start of John Allison’s post Bobbins, pre Giant Days web comic.
Hocus Focus (Adventures in Cartooning) hardcover (:01 First Second)
In Between Days: Memoir Living With Cancer (House Of Anansi Press)
The Metabaron : Book 2: The Techno-Cardinal & The Transhuman: Oversized Deluxe Hardcover (Humanoids Inc) – A sequel to Alejandro Jodorowsky’s monumental Metabarons, now with Jenny Frison co-writing. This is a 12″ tall format that matches the seriously out of print The Metabarons Ultimate Collection (a smaller edition is still readily available); Volume 1 of the new series was out in October.
Nathan Hale’s One Trick Pony OGN hardcover (Amulet Books) – From the bestselling author of Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales, this original future sci-fi concept looks super-cool!
Artemis: Wild Goddess of the Hunt [Olympians, Vol. 9] (:01 First Second)
Providence Act 1 Final Printing (Avatar) – Collects Providence #1-4. (Your eyes do not deceive you – this was originally in the February 22nd releases, and may still be further delayed.) This is Alan Moore’s current work, a horror comic that per the “Final Printing” in the title will see limited recollection in this initial format (the first HC is already 3x its initial cover price). Avatar typically follows through with these threats, but Moore’s work almost always winds up recollected later, so make of it what you will. (This is not listed in Previews for the week.)
Robocop: Dead or Alive Vol. 3 (Boom! Studios) – Written by Joshua Williamson, who is on quite a hot streak right now! Pick up Volume 1 and Volume 2, also by Williamson. (Another refugee from the February 22nd releases – I told you this stuff was confusing.)
Siberia 56 OGN (Insight Comics) – This is the rare case where a gorgeous cover matches beautiful interiors; I’ll probably check this out.
Star Scouts, Vol. 1 (:01 First Second) – By Mike Lawrence
The Damned, Vol. 1: Three Days Dead (Oni Press) – A new edition of the Cullen Bunn series, with new color art.
The Mighty Zodiac, Vol 01 (Oni Press) – Collects The Mighty Zodiac #1-6. I’m not familiar with author J. Torres, but I am totally here for epic fantasy adventure based on the Chinese Zodiac! This one might wind up in my shopping cart on Wednesday.
Will Eisners Contract With God Other Tenement Stories Hardcover (W. W. Norton & Company)
Yvain Knight Of The Lion OGN (Candlewick Press) – National Book Award winner M. T. Anderson and illustrator Andrea Offermann bring the legend of Yvain (from the classic Chrétien de Troyes poem) to life.