On the eve of Cybertron’s first free elections, everything has fallen apart. Megatron has returned, inciting Decepticons across the capital of Iacon to riot. The political jockeying of Bumblebee, Starscream, and Metalhawk has consequences, foreseen and otherwise. And, Prowl’s notorious machinations have been building to this moment, and it all revolves around what’s contained in the Black Room. (Not the Black Room where DC keeps all of its powerful magical artifacts, probably. That would be crazy.)
In recent years, alien invaders have had it rough. They’ve fought cowboys, they’ve fought Texans with jetpacks, they’ve even fought dinosaurs. Earth’s lucky to have so many anti-alien fighting forces, and it still has at least one ace up its planetary sleeve: genies. That’s the premise of Jinnrise, a new series written by Sohaib Awan and drawn by Tony Vassallo.
If you aren't reading Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips's crime-and-cults Fatale, this is as good a time as any to start. With the second arc having been finished in the last issue, Fatale is doing a few one-shot stories of which this issue is the first.
I doubt you really need to be sold on Brian Wood. With titles like DMZ, Northlanders, and The Massive in his body of work, Wood’s possibly one of the most competent comic scribes out there. Mara is not like any of those things, but that’s probably a good thing: it’s nice to see someone at the top of their game branch out rather than play it safe.
Nick Sax is a great detective turned hitman. If popular crime fiction is any way to judge, that must happen to most detectives eventually. Despite its name, Happy! is very much the opposite: a bleak, brutal, cynical tale of mobsters and mayhem, and for all that the setup is formulaic and it doesn't thrive. I think maybe because the script is written from the "criminals curse every other word they say for no particular reason" school of dialogue.
I always have a good deal of fun with Super Dinosaur. Kirkman's all-ages series about a kid and his genetically-altered T-rex best friend and their struggles against various villainous forces is good for both its lighthearted action adventure and, for me, its nostalgia factor. As a child of the '80s and '90s, I grew up on cartoons that originated the tradition to which Super Dinosaur belongs – though the comic is a little less restrained by censors and stuff.
SPOILERS BELOW (for the first few issues)
The eponymous character in Ghost has been around for a bit – nearly twenty years – and this issue marks the beginning of a new monthly series featuring the character. This zero issue collects a three-part story originally serialized in Dark Horse Presents #13-15 earlier in the year.
I don’t understand why we don’t have more anthology comics out there. Comics grew up on anthologies. Some of the most prominent characters in comics appeared first in anthologies. I do like regular ongoings, too, don’t get me wrong, but a good anthology allows creators to try small, wild stuff and allows readers to try out a bunch of creators.
Dark Horse Presents #16 is a sterling example of what an anthology comic ought to be.
It’s another double-sized, double-priced Transformers adventure, following on the heels of the annual of Robots in Disguise’s sister series, More than Meets the Eye, which hit a few weeks back. If you are going to read both annuals, More than Meets the Eye’s technically comes first, but it is not required reading if you are on the fence or just not following that series. Likewise, readers of More than Meets the Eye will find some background in this annual relevant to recent plotlines in that series.
The main storyline of Robots in Disguise – the reconstruction of Cybertron in the wake of the Great War – gets a vacation for a one-and-done story that continues the roaming saga of Optimus Prime and a handful of others. In deep space, Prime pursues the truth behind a deadly plan hatched by the Decepticons’ greatest scientists, Shockwave and Jhiaxus.