last month, when we saw a lot of new solicitations of 1980s/1990s comics collections, this month is a little more humdrum (they can't all be winners).
If you've never read Kelley Puckett and Scott Peterson's Cassanda Cain Batgirl, first of all shame on you, and second there's a collection for you this month; also Batman by Ed Brubaker, Batman Noir: Black Mirror, and the start of a Supergirl trade reprint series. But nothing to really, really get the blood pumping, I don't think. Let's take a look:
• Batgirl Vol. 1: Silent Knight TP
We had previously believed this to be called Cassandra Cain: Batgirl Vol. 1, though now it's just "Batgirl." That's a little unfortunate -- I'd like to see this better differentiated from the Barbara Gordon volumes -- but the title is cute, "Silent Knight" being a mix of the original Batgirl Vol. 1: Silent Running and Batgirl Vol. 2: A Knight Alone.The book collects all of the previous volume 1 and most of volume 2, going right up to Officer Down. The Batgirl annual that's included has never been collected before, so that's nice; all in all a good start to this.
• Batman by Ed Brubaker Vol. 1 TP
The contents remain consistent from the earlier solicitation of this. The inclusion of the "Our Worlds at War" issue will make fun placement on the DC Trade Paperback Timeline. The new solicitation text for this ("Ed Brubaker’s legendary run on Batman is collected, starting with ...) strongly suggests future volumes to come.
• Batman Noir: The Black Mirror HC
Previous solicitations had just Detective Comics #871-877, but the new solicitations include #871-881, the entire original volume. There are not many books I'm interested in reading in black and white nor buying twice, but Black Mirror was such a good story and Jock and Francesco Francavilla's art would look so good in black and white, this is very, very tempting.
• Batman: Shaman TP (New Edition)
Nice to see the collection of the very first Legends of the Dark Knight storyline getting a reprint.
• DC Comics Presents: Darkseid War 100-Page Super Spectacular #1
Collects the first Jack Kirby issues of Mister Miracle, New Gods, and Forever People, plus New Gods #7. I won't spoil it if you're not up to date, but New Gods #7 is a triumph of serial storytelling back in the day, with events from that title significantly affecting the other Fourth World titles even though the effects wouldn't be felt right away.
• DC Comics Presents: Robin War 100-Page Super Spectacular #1
Includes Teen Titans #29 (Tim Drake vs. Jason Todd), Batman #657 (Tim Drake vs. Damian Wayne), Nightwing #139 (Tim Drake vs. Dick Grayson), and Battle for the Cowl #3 (everyone vs. everyone), all of which rather suggests Tim Drake has some anger issues.
• Grayson Vol. 2: We All Die at Dawn TP
Another Grayson collection that's not so long, just four issues and an annual, but darned if Tim Seeley and Tom King don't make it worth it. Sorry all who bought the first Grayson hardcover, but this one is paperback only. Midnighter appears, of course.
• New Teen Titans Vol. 4 TP
Collects New Teen Titans #21-27 and the Annual #1, which is still in the midst of New Teen Titans Omnibus Vol. 2 (or New Teen Titans Archive Vol. 2, which included a Titans vs. Greek gods tale, and also details Changeling's past with the Doom Patrol. This is all plenty of issues ahead of Judas Contract, and still a ways to go until these paperbacks start reprinting previously-unreprinted material.
• Red Hood and The Outlaws Vol. 7: Last Call TP
The final Red Hood collection before Convergence collects issues #35-40 and the Futures End tie-in.
• Supergirl Vol. 1: The Girl of Steel TP
Collects the previous Jeph Loeb Supergirl: Power and Joe Kelly Supergirl: Candor trades, featuring the mid-2000s "bad girl celebrity"-type Supergirl.
Not poor stories, though assuredly controversial. One certainly wonders, in the advent of the Supergirl TV series, why DC isn't reprinting the more-closely-related Sterling Gates and Jamal Igle issues. Possibly (unfortunately) there's a bit more obvious prurience to these issues that might help sell them off the shelf, though the Gates stories will again seem more familiar to TV-watchers.
• Superman: Emperor Joker TP
Glad to see a reprint from one of my favorite Superman eras (behind the Triangle Titles) though why it's being reprinted necessarily is hard to say, short of the ubiquity of all things Joker these days. This is a straight reprint of the original volume, though at some point I wish this volume would include Action Comics #784, a "Joker's Last Laugh" tie-in, which was a rather poignant epilogue to Emperor Joker by Joe Kelly.
• Swamp Thing Vol. 7: Season’s End TP
The final Swamp Thing collection before Convergence, including issues #35-40, the Annual #3, and the Futures End tie-in.
What are you buying? Anything I overlooked?