DC Trade Solicitations for February 2014 - Trinity War tie-ins, Batman/Superman, Batwoman, Brubaker Catwoman
Friday, November 15, 2013
I look at all of that and more, as follows:
• Justice League Vol. 4: The Grid HC
This will undoubtedly fan the flames of concern about DC's Trinity War collection plans. The new solicitation for Justice League Vol. 4 now includes issues #18-20 (the "Grid" storyline), skips #21, and then collects parts 1 and 6 of Trinity War. Those who don't follow Justice League of America and Justice League Dark are upset, I know, that some double-buying seems to need to be involved; I'm disconcerted by the new absence of issue #21, which ties-in to the Shazam! story that I enjoyed. Will we ever see this issue collected somewhere? Why publish this book with five issues, when six is not uncommon?
• Animal Man Vol. 4: Splinter Species TP
I love the "Not Final Cover" cover of this one, with all the white space; it reminds me of some of the Animal Man covers during Grant Morrison's run. Don't read the solicits for this one, which spoil the end of "Rotworld."
• Batman/Superman Vol. 1: Cross World HC
Collects Batman/Superman #1-4 and also the Justice League #23.1 issue featuring Darkseid. The Villains Month issue is written by Batman/Superman's Greg Pak and I'm glad to see it collected, but I wonder if it actually relates to this story or if this was just a convenient place to put it.
• Batwoman Vol. 4: This Blood is Thick TP
Collects the last of J. H. Williams and Haden Blackman's issues on Batwoman. As some commenters have pointed out, this appears to be the first instance of a New 52 collection series switching from hardcover to paperback for its first-run collections. It seems curious to me that DC did this with Williams and Blackman's final trade; if, one assumes, the concern is that the book won't sell well enough for hardcover, I'd imagine that sales drop would come with Marc Andreyko's first trade (no reflection on Andreyko), not Williams and Hayden's last. It's equally possible that low sales have caused the switch, authors notwithstanding, though I thought Batwoman was doing well.
• Earth 2 Vol. 3: War HC
It's a little surprising that DC has this hardcover packed as full as it is -- eight issues plus an annual. James Robinson's last issue is #16, and unless there's a significant cliffhanger between Robinson's #16 and Tom Taylor's #17, I'd think DC would want to start fresh with Taylor in the next trade. I'm not complaining, mind you -- packed hardcover collections are OK with me.
• Green Arrow Vol. 4: The Kill Machine TP
At some point I thought the previous collection, Harrow, was meant to include a little bit of Jeff Lemire's new run on the series, but that's not the case; this fourth collection starts off Lemire's run. Rather surprised to see this didn't switch the other way, over to hardcover.
• Green Lantern Vol. 4: Dark Days HC
Very early word that I received on this collection said it would contain all the "Lights Out" crossover parts from all the other titles (and that the other collections would as well, the kind of construction I think some would like to see for the Trinity War collections). This new solicitation, however, says this just contains Green Lantern #21-26, the Annual #2, and the Villains Month issue #23.1: Relic. This means this collection only contains one part of "Lights Out" and you'll have to buy other collections to get the full story, which I imagine won't sit well with some.
• Trinity of Sin—Pandora Vol. 1: The Curse TP
• Trinity of Sin—The Phantom Stranger Vol. 2: Breach of Faith TP
The first Pandora collection includes issues #1-6, of which #1-3 are Trinity War tie-ins and #6 is a Forever Evil: Blight tie-in; sounds to me like this will be a tough collection to read solely on its own. Even more crazy-making is that the Phantom Stranger collection includes issue #6-11, of which #11 is a Trinity-War tie in; Blight doesn't start for Phantom Stranger until the next trade, in issue #14, so you get one part of Blight in Pandora in February but not the Phantom Stranger parts of Blight until probably much later this year.
• Batman: Bruce Wayne: Murderer? New Edition TP
This is the Batman: Murderer collection that I wish DC would have published the first time around, and I'm glad to finally see it. The book contains Batgirl #24, 27, Batman #599-602, Batman: Gotham Knights #25-28, Batman: The 10-Cent Adventure #1, Birds of Prey #39, 40-41, 43, Detective Comics #766-767, Nightwing #65-66, 68-69, and Robin #98-99; if some eagle-eyed commenter wants to check how this matches with the original collection and let us know, feel free.
• Catwoman Vol. 3: Under Pressure TP
At long last, this third volume completes the collections of Ed Brubaker's Catwoman run. Includes issues #25-37, including the War Games tie-in issues, #34-36.
• DC Comics Presents: Harley Quinn #1
• Harley Quinn: Welcome To Metropolis TP
I actually didn't think DC was publishing those DC Comics Presents sub-trades any more, but this one includes Harley Quinn's No Man's Land-era origin story, among other things. The trade collects the last of Karl Kesel's issues on his series; sales of this one will probably decide whether DC follows this with a collection of the A. J. Lieberman (Gotham Knights) stories that followed.
• Batman ‘66 Vol. 1 HC
Collects issues #1-5, though I'm not sure if that's from the print version of the digital series or straight from digital. At some point I'd heard this series was supposed to have interactive features but I've never seen anything else about it; I'm curious how that will translate to print, if at all.
• Smallville Season 11 Vol. 4: Argo TP
Near as I can figure there should be just one more Smallville Season 11 trade after this collecting the "regular" digital series, before this switches over to miniseries. This collects print issues #13-15 and the Special #2; the next should have #16-19.
What will you be picking up in February? Crossover collecting driving you crazy yet?