Once a month the amazing staff at 8th Dimension Comics selects a pile of the best new releases for us to peruse and judge.
Confession time, we've always had a little crush on Valerie from Josie and the Pussycats. Don't judge, everybody gets one cartoon to ogle. We missed the big debacle over Riverdale's first gay (and interracial) marriage, but now Archie has ditched Betty and Veronica for our girl. It's one of the more readable Archie comics, and honestly we're digging the more comparatively modern vibe they've been bringing to the series lately. Think we'll skip the next issue though when we'll see the ginger gets hitched to our favorite bass player.
Rating: 6 of 10
If you haven't been following Avenging Spider-Man, it basically works like the old Marvel Team-Up series. Each issue focuses on Spider-Man and a random guest, in this case Captain America. Spidey discovers Cap's past as a comic book artist and tries to find some common ground with him, their having both been nerds when growing up. The awkward attempt to bond with the soldier is one of the funniest books we've ever read, and in the end Spider-Man does manage to crack Cap's hardened shell and entice him back to the art world.
Rating: 9 of 10
After a descent into the underworld to confront a grave-robbing Mole Man, Matt Murdoch is forced to come to terms with the death of his father. His battle with Mole Man is short and bitter, with neither really gaining a win due to the open wounds of their own losses. Another stellar look into the scarred heart of the Man Without Fear.
Rating: 7 0f 10
Warning: Page 2 contains extremely graphic violence.
Garth Ennis has a few... issues with religion, and even though we would've said that he'd gotten that out of his system with Preacher, that does not appear to be the case. In Crossed, a plague that causes an enormous crucifix-shaped rash on the face makes the sufferers live out their most evil desires. In the latest mini-series, a team of survivors trek across the United Kingdom running from the infected. It's not as brutal and bloody as previous series, but as far as postapocalyptic walkfests go, it's pretty damned good.
Rating: 6 of 10
Oh boy, here we go. This is the pilot issue of the majorly hyped battle between the Avengers and the X-Men, and we'd be lying if we said we had any interest at all in the thing. One side of the issue follows a returned Scarlet Witch stopping MODOK, but then being drawn into a confrontation with her former Avenger teammates. Meanwhile, Hope Summers moonlights as a crimefighter while trying to deal with her future as a host for the Phoenix Force. It wasn't bad, but damn if we're not dreading having to deal with this giant, pointless albatross for the next year.
Rating: 5 of 10
Zombies and vampires... they're starting to smell, but Dan Abnett and I.N.J. Culbard do a fair piece with an alternate Edwardian England populated only by vampires, zombies and the occasional human. The series follows Chief Inspector George Suttle, a vampire who is the last remaining homicide detective in Scotland Yard. It's not a gripping read, but rather a charming penny dreadful which should do something to slake the thirst of the undead fandom.
Rating: 7 of 10