Benjamin and Ryan, the True Believers, are back with their weekly recommendations for what you should be reading in the world of comics. Check them out after the jump and be sure to support your local comic book retailer.
Releases for 5/3/17
Black Bolt #1 (Marvel)
I honestly could not be more excited for this title. Not only am I a lifelong Inhumans fan (we do exist!), but Black Bolt is easily one of my top-5 comic characters. I understand everyone’s critiques, but there’s just something about a king who commands not only a whole people but a religion without a single word that, when done right, is incredibly captivating–and intimidating. With the all-star team of Saladin Ahmed and Christian Ward, I can’t imagine this book not being a home run for me. Can’t wait to see how they open up this character especially now that he doesn’t have his throne.
Faith #11 (Valiant)
If you love comics and pop culture, you’ll love Faith Herbert, the witty superhero from Valiant. She’s a psiot, which means that she can fly and has telekinetic powers. Her alter-ego is Summer Smith, an entertainment blogger based in Los Angeles, who loves superheroes and nerd culture as much as anyone. In this latest issue, she’s starting to meet her match in the form of a villain team up, the Faithless. Her arch-enemy Sydney Price takes on Faith’s identity to lure her into a trap and defeat her once and for all.
Flintstones #11 (DC)
Still one of the sharpest series running (and one we recommended from the beginning of this True Believer series), the latest issue of The Flintstones tackles gentrification, hipsters, and cosmic neighborliness. Writer Mark Russell brings back the character of Gazoo, an alien assigned to observe humanity, as a participant in the Neighborhood Association. He and three of his fellow aliens fly around the galaxy to determine whether inhabitants on various planets deserve to live or not. As you can imagine, it doesn’t look good for humanity.
Hawkeye #6 (Marvel)
The writing, courtesy of Kelly Thompson, has been so consistently funny and on point in this series that I wish we could get a new issue each week. Hawkeye’s daughter, Kate Bishop, a.k.a. Hawkeye, runs a PI firm in LA. She’s solving cases and trying to find her dad, who’s recently gone missing. Her current case involves a missing young woman, which felt very Hollywood Noir until a dragon showed up in the last issue. WhileThompson’s Hawkeye is yet another strong and witty hero, she doesn’t have everything together, and part of the series appeal is watching Kate’s investigative skills catch up to her archery abilities.
James Bond Black Box #3 (Dynamite)
If you’re like us, the wait between James Bond films feels interminable. So, like us, you’ll also know that Dynamite has done humanity a great service in bringing the suave secret agent to serialized format. The past stories, Vargyr (brilliant work from Warren Ellis), Eidolon, and Hammerhead have boasted stellar artwork and all the action, suspense, and gadgetry you’ve come to expect from the films. The arc, Black Box, by Benjamin Percy and Rapha Lobosco provides more of the same. This issue features something we’ve never seen before…death by sumo wrestling.
Jessica Jones #8 (Marvel)
Perhaps the most mature story arc of any of the series we’ve promoted. Reading these issues feels like watching the highly-acclaimed Netflix series. Brian Michael Bendis’ narrative weaves a dark tale of betrayal and revenge. Here, Jessica Jones has enacted an elaborate, fake fall from grace to help Captain Marvel lure an anti-superhero group from the shadows. Just when Jessica thinks those events are behind her, disgraced S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Maria Hill drops into her life looking for a little help.
Justice League #20 (DC)
The new story arc, “Endless,” starts here, but it keeps in line with themes from the previous story arc, “Timeless.” The Justice League are trapped in a time loop after they’re attacked by a man wielding a mysterious alien weapon. As the issue progresses, it appears that they might just be the architects of their own demise and, potentially, the world’s.
Secret Empire #1 (Marvel)
I know I’m not going to change anyone’s mind about this one with just one blurb but all I can suggest is to just breath. This is not the first time a hero has turned evil and, aside from Marvel’s spectacular mishandling of the criticism (come on, just admit it’s a commentary on the current political climate. It’s ok for your art to say something), it really is worth checking out. Unlike the decidedly flat Civil War II, Secret Empire has actual stakes, the greatest of which is the most noble of all heroes turning on everyone. The 0 issue set up an ultimate betrayal, a full scale attack from all sides by their greatest strategists, and I for one can’t wait to see how the heroes try to outsmart their leader. Plus, it’ll be great to see the alt-right squashed…even if only in comic form.