DC Trade Solicitations (June 2016 Previews) - Flash by Mark Waid Book One, Supergirl by Sterling Gates, Final Days of Superman, Titans Hunt

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Obviously the biggest DC Comics news lies somewhere other than their June 2016 hardcover and trade paperback collection solicitations. For we trade-waiters, however, for whom "Rebirth" is still somewhat far off, there's some exiting stuff in this list, namely at long last the first Flash by Mark Waid collection. There's also some interesting (and controversial) material heralding Supergirl's renewal for a second season, now on CW, and the Titans Hunt collection to maybe tide us over until "Rebirth" arrives.

Here's the run-down:

Flash by Mark Waid Book One TP

Surely the highlight of this month is the first volume of the long-awaited collection series of Mark Waid's Flash. This first book collects issues #62-68; #62-65 are the "Flash: Year One" story collected in Flash: Born to Run, and the other issues (involving Aquaman and Pied Piper) are previously uncollected. Also included is a Flash Special with a framing story by Waid, published before his run, and Flash Annual #4, which is an Armageddon 2001(!) annual, and Flash Annual #5, an Eclipso: The Darkness Within annual.

This volume collected seven regular issues; if we count seven more issues, that puts one squarely in the middle of the Flash: Return of Barry Allen storyline. I doubt DC would break that up, so either the next collection is from issues #69-79, or else it's #69-73 with two Green Lantern crossover issues, which would still make seven issues.

I had thought there was significantly more Waid/Flash material before Return of Barry Allen, but I guess not; I didn't realize that was practically the beginning of the run.

Flash by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato Omnibus HC

Less notable but still a fine read in its own right, this omnibus collects Manapul and Buccellato's issues #0-25 and the Villains Month Reverse Flash issue.

Coloring DC: Supergirl TP

DC unfortunately starts off a month of strong Supergirl offerings with a bit of controversy. The solicited cover for Coloring DC: Supergirl is a Ian Churchill drawing that's not been received well online. It's hard to say if this was accidental or a conscious choice of "sex sells," but I wouldn't be surprised if this ships with a different cover.

Supergirl: Who is Superwoman? TP New Edition
Supergirl: Friends and Fugitives TP New Edition
Supergirl: Bizarrogirl TP New Edition

If any run deserves another set of collections, it's Sterling Gates's "New Krypton"-era Supergirl stories, which among other things seem to have directly influenced the CBS TV show. These "new editions" don't appear to have any new content, however, and curiously only three of Gates's four collections are getting reprints (missing is Death and the Family, which is surely required reading for this run).

Adventures of Supergirl TP

Collected this month also is Gates's Adventures of Supergirl digital TV-tie-in miniseries. So if Gates writes the Supergirl digital comic and Gates writes for the Flash digital comic, does that mean Gates could write a digital Supergirl/Flash crossover comic?

Superman: American Alien HC

Collects the Max Landis miniseries. I haven't known what to make of this. Good? Not good?

Superman: Savage Dawn HC
Superman: The Final Days of Superman HC

Closing out the Superman titles before "Rebirth" are these collections of Action Comics, Superman, Batman/Superman, and Superman/Wonder Woman by Aaron Kuder, Gene Luen Yang, Greg Pak, and Peter Tomasi. At least the Superman/Wonder Woman issues are supposed to be collected in their own volume, but whether the connected Superman issues will be as well, or whether this will be it for those issues, remains to be seen. Preferences?

• Superman/Batman: The Saga of the Super Sons TP New Edition

This collection of 1970s-1980s World's Finest stories about Clark Kent Jr. and Bruce Wayne Jr., plus a story from the infamous Elseworlds 80-Page Giant, has been printed before, and there doesn't seem to be new material this time except for the connection to "Rebirth."

Aquaman: A Celebration of 75 Years HC

Includes stories by Jack Miller, Steve Skeates, and Geoff Johns; I can guarantee what a lot of fans want to see for Aquaman's 75th anniversary is collections of more Peter David material.

Batman Beyond Vol. 2: City of Yesteryday TP

Collects issues #7-11; there should be one more collection of the Dan Jurgens series before "Rebirth."

Batman: Arkham: Poison Ivy TP

Collects Batman #181, #339; Batman/Poison Ivy; Batman Chronicles #9; Batman: Shadow of the Bat Annual #3; Detective Comics #23.1; Gotham City Sirens #8; Joker’s Asylum: Poison Ivy #1; Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #42-43; World’s Finest #251-252; and Secret Origins #36. Some of this is uncollected though I don't see anything of continuity significance necessarily.

Constantine, The Hellblazer Vol. 2: The Art of the Deal TP

Collects issues #7-13, ending the series before "Rebirth."

Green Arrow Vol. 6: Last Action Hero TP

Continues the Mike Grell Green Arrow collections from issue #39 through the double-sized issue #50.

Harley Quinn’s Greatest Hits TP

Collects Batman Adventures #12, Batman #613, Gotham City Sirens #7, Suicide Squad #1, Batman #13, Harley Quinn #21, Harley Quinn and the Suicide Squad April Fool’s Special #1, and Countdown #10; I don't see much here that hasn't been collected before.

Justice League 3001 Vol. 2: Things Fall Apart TP

Collects the final issues of Justice League 3001, #7-12.

Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death TP

Collects the six-issue Poison Ivy miniseries. I can't say this really stuck out to me, seemingly unlikely to be picked up as cannon by future writers (same with some of the other miniseries out at that time like Swamp Thing and Legends of Tomorrow), but I'm certainly glad that the fans who wanted this book got it.

Suicide Squad Most Wanted: Katana TP

Collects the Katana half of the Deadshot/Katana miniseries. I was surprised to see Katana in Batman Eternal the other day since the character has little to do with him in this continuity (her inclusion being an artifact of what the writers remember from previous continuities). Hopefully the Suicide Squad movie will lead to the character being used better coming up.

Teen Titans: The Silver Age Omnibus Vol. 1 HC

The contents here, for reference, are the same as Showcase Presents: Teen Titans (minus Brave and the Bold #83 and Teen Titans #19) and the Silver Age Teen Titans Archive Vols. 1-2 (except that also contained Teen Titans #20).

Titans Hunt TP

Obviously more and more important all the time, this volume collects the eight-issue miniseries that leads into "Rebirth."

So what's on your pull list? No "Rebirth" spoilers -- that's for another thread -- but how's your luck been avoiding those spoilers online?
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  1. I almost feel like those Supergirl solicits might be wrong. The missing trade is only four issues, which could easily be slipped into one of the remaining three. Also, the Bizarrogirl trade looks like it includes two issues that were not in the first edition, which could also be a mistake.

    Either way, I'm stoked to see these getting more attention. I LOVED the Gates/Igle run and I'm glad others will get a chance to read it.

    1. I think they didn't reprint Death and the Family simply because it's still somewhat easy to find, while the other three Supergirl TPBs by Gates are sold out everywhere.

    2. Dan, I couldn't spot the changes; what are the new issues that might be in the trade?

      shag, generally when it comes to "New Edition" I think there's at least new trade dress; seems a shame for just one volume of this series not to be gussied up with the rest.

  2. I had to stay away from comics sites since last Monday so I wouldn't be subjected to Rebirth spoilers. That was hard to do, but I'm glad I did, as Rebirth had me in tears in a couple of places.

    I read Titans Hunt digitally each month, but I"ll still pick up the trade. I really enjoyed it quite a bit, and it's great to see the original Titans together again. I'll also get that Omnibus, even though I have the Archives, because I hope we get a second volume eventually.

    Superman:American Alien has garnered some good reviews, so I'll pick that up. I'm way behind on New 52 Superman titles, so may be a while before I get to the end of those runs.

    The latest Grell Green Arrow for sure. I'll probably be picking up some older stuff I don't this month, as it's a bit lean for me.

  3. That is a lot of Supergirl trades for one month. It looks like a weaker month overall but that is still a lot to ask of Supergirl fans.

  4. Doesn't the Silver Age Teen Titans Omnibus seem a little light, at 23 issues? Especially compared to the Silver Age JLA Omnibus. Great cover by the late Darwyn Cooke though.

  5. I thought Flash by Mark Waid Book One would collect more issues, but then I realized that the two annuals and the 50th Anniversary Special will actually take up more pages altogether than the seven regular issues collected. I'm pretty confident that the next volume will at least get to the end of "Return of Barry Allen", and there should also be room for Green Lantern #30-31 (parts 1 and 3 of "Gorilla Warfare") and Flash Annual #6 (a "Bloodlines" tie-in) in it.

    1. "this volume collected seven regular issues, so next one will most likely have seven too" logic doesn't make even a little bit of sense, does it?

    2. Only that the number of issues in the previous is a good benchmark for the next; that is, that it contains seven issues and not twenty, for instance.

  6. I'm hyped for Mark Waid Flash Book one,and Titan's Hunt.
    As for avoiding spoilers to Rebirth? I'm so happy I went in blind. Totally caught me off guard multiple times, and I'm so grateful for the people who said to avoid *insert site* for showing spoilers before it comes out. Rebirth is definitely the best to read without knowing anything going in.

  7. The great thing about Waid's Flash is that he was at top form almost out of the gate. Everything else was expanding on that, and in some ways was very hard to live up to.

    Superman: American Alien is some of the best Superman origin material I've ever read.

  8. Will the Mark Waid Flash books get hardcover treatments?

  9. I wonder if Superman 45-47 actually will be included in Savage Dawn so I don't have to get duplicate volumes for three freaking issues. Besides that, the trades of Action and SM/WW should be done. The story of Savage Dawn and Final Days crosses over explicitly from one title to the next unlike Truth where each book was kind of its own thing. Duplicate volumes would contain nothing new and just be a waste of paper.

    1. Unfortunately, it looks like completists will not only have to buy the second volume of Yang's Superman run just because of issues #45-47, but also the final volume of Superman/Wonder Woman just because of the second annual, which won't be included in the Savage Dawn HC either.

      Double-dipping has been an unfortunate constant in the way crossovers have been collected in the New 52 era, ever since the Throne of Atlantis debacle. If DC approached these crossovers like they did in the not-so-old days, they would have collected Superman #45-47 along with #40-44, and Superman/Wonder Woman Annual #2 along with #18-24, so that the Savage Dawn and Final Days of Superman collections would close out the character's pre-Rebirth era with no need for individual volumes collecting the final issues of each Superman series. That's what they did with War of the Green Lanterns and its aftermath collection, for instance.