Earlier this week DC Comics released their August 2013 solicitations, including trade paperbacks, collections, and graphic novels. As you know, DC also cancelled four titles -- Legion of Super-Heroes, Threshhold, Demon Knights, and Dial H. Even as we're talking about August, I think most of us have our eyes tipped toward September, such to see what new books might replace the fallen. (What Wave will this be now? I can never keep track.)
Losing Legion certainly stings, as for me this has been one of the most enjoyable and accessible Legion runs in a while -- up there with the early issues of the recent Mark Waid/Barry Kitson run, but maybe a little better because I adored this return to the "new classic" Legion. But while Paul Levitz's Legion was superlative just before Flashpoint, in the New 52 the wind seemed to go out of its sails a little bit, and I can't necessarily say the cancellation was a surprise.
Nor can I gather up the ire that Waid has about this -- surely there's been an instance before where Legion has been cancelled one month and restarted the next (for instance, when Waid himself relaunched Legion after Zero Hour). And even if Legion does go on hiatus, I find it hard to believe Waid would expect DC to keep publishing Legion if it wasn't making money -- just because a title's been around for forty years (in three or four different iterations, which I'm not sure counts as "continuous") doesn't make it too big to fail if it's, well, failing.
• Joker: Death of The Family HC
We already knew about this, but now we have a semi-confirmed release date of October 16, the week after the Batman: Death of the Family collection comes out (so they're the opposite of Night of the Owls, where the tie-in book came out first; this time the tie-in book comes out second).
Contents are reported as Batman #17, Catwoman #13-14, Batgirl #14-16, Batman and Robin #15-17, Nightwing #15-16, Detective Comics #16-17, Red Hood and the Outlaws #15-16 and Teen Titans #15, plus pages from Batman #13, Batgirl #13, Nightwing #14, Red Hood and the Outlaws #13-14, Suicide Squad #14-15 and Teen Titans #14 and 16. This will mark the first time in the New 52 that a DC collection has included "pages from" instead of a full issue, and I'll be curious to see how seamlessly (or not) the pages fit in. I recently re-read Batman: Murderer/Fugitive, whose collections also tried to patch together just the relevant parts of the tie-ins, and it's a valiant effort but my thinking is overall these collections read better with the full issue.
• Batgirl Vol. 3: Death of The Family HC
This collects Batgirl #14-19, Batman #17, Batgirl Annual #1, and the Batgirl story from Young Romance #1, which is a nicely large enough selection of issues that it doesn't feel like Joker: Death of the Family duplicates it too much. I'm especially glad to see these Young Romance stories collected with their respective titles, too; here and also in the Stormwatch book, to name two off the top of my head (or does Stormwatch? See below).
• DC One Million Omnibus HC
If it's go big or go home, DC went big with this one. You've got to admire a book that not only collects the original crossover and tie-ins (in and of itself a feat, and it makes me still hopeful for that Crisis on Infinite Earths Omnibus with all the tie-in issues, one day), but also ancillary stories that came out years (and in one respect, even a decade) later like the 80-Page Giant, Superman/Batman, and Booster Gold. Plus this is about the only place you can find collected issues of Chronos and Creeper, among others.
• Necessary Evil: The Villains of the DC Universe TP
Collects parts of Action Comics Annual #10, Batman #244 and 614, Batman Villains Secret Files #1, Black Adam #6, Green Lantern Corps #14, Solo #1, Superman: Lex 2000, Wonder Woman #214, Countdown to Infinite Crisis #1, and profile pages from Countdown #2, 6-11, 14-16, 19, 27, 29, 33-34 and 36-37. I don't think I spot anything in there that hasn't been collected already except maybe the Batman Villains story, whatever it turns out to be, and the Countdown profiles.
• Ame-Comi Girls Vol. 1 TP
• Arrow Vol. 1 TP
• Batman: Legends of The Dark Knight Vol. 1 TP
Chris Arrant at Robot 6 asked the other day whether DC's digital comics were their best-kept secret. It certainly seems like they're rolling out collections of the same pretty regularly. That a collection is coming out doesn't necessarily speak to the quality of the product, but from what I hear Smallville and Injustice and the rest are all doing well; how long until an in-continuity title goes digital first, do you think? (And how long until DC goes ahead and adopts the Thrillbent/Marvel Infinite Comics method of digital comics "animation"?)
• Animal Man Vol. 3: Rotworld—The Red Kingdom TP
• Earth 2 Vol. 2: The Tower of Fate HC
At some point I was thinking the next Earth 2 collection wouldn't be out until 2014. Quite thankfully it's October, and it's got almost seven-to-eight issues of content in it.
• Green Lantern Vol. 3: The End HC
Does ... does this mean I just have one more Geoff Johns Green Lantern collection to read, and that's it? Oh. Oh my.
• Green Arrow Vol. 3: Harrow TP
I mentioned elsewhere I'm kind of disappointed not to see any of Jeff Lemire's new run on the series collected here, just because it means we have to wait that much longer before Lemire's first Green Arrow collection. At the same time, while I expect from reading authors Ann Nocenti and Rob Liefeld's other works that I may find this collection a little rough, between the Savage Hawkman and Justice League issue this collection is obviously meant to milk the Justice League of America connection for all its worth, and that's an enjoyable prospect.
• Stormwatch Vol. 3: Betrayal TP
Some of the online retailers list a Young Romance story as being included here, but DC themselves don't, so your guess is as good as mine.
What are you buying for August? And more importantly, is it time for September solicits yet?