DC Trade Solicitations for January 2023 - Batman/Superman: World's Finest, Joker Vol. 3, Absolute Dark Nights: Death Metal, Nice House on the Lake Vol. 2, Superman: Warworld Revolution, Batgirls Vol. 2, Adam Strange Deluxe, DC by McDuffie


Well, the DC Comics January 2023 trade paperback and hardcover solicitations are unremarkable overall, but I’m much happier seeing 23 books on the list instead of last month’s eight! (Even if a handful of them are paperbacks of hardcovers.)

Mostly regular series collections for me this month. I tell you what, the second Nice House on the Lake collection almost got this month’s cover spot, except I’m real excited for Mark Waid’s Batman/Superman: World’s Finest and whatever the next-next big thing it’s leading in to at DC. Action Comics, Wonder Woman, Batgirls, Swamp Thing, and Joker are all buys for me.

I’m pleased to see Batman: The Dark Knight Detective keep chugging along. I’ll be glad when that series is over not because I’m glad to see it over, but to be satisfied all of those issues are finally collected (do the Super-titles next!). DC Universe by Dwayne McDuffie is a deserved collection, and I adore how Adam Strange: Between Two Worlds brings together stories from across eras into a cohesive whole.

Let’s take a look at the full list.

Absolute Dark Nights: Death Metal

Collects issues #1–7 of the Scott Snyder/Greg Capullo event, in Absolute format. Includes "behind-the-scenes art ..., original pencil pages, and a brand-new introduction."

Adam Strange: Between Two Worlds: The Deluxe Edition

I rather wish DC would do more like this for their "minor" characters. This is the Richard Burning and Andy Kubert's three-issue Adam Strange: The Man of Two Worlds 1990 post-Crisis miniseries, Mark Waid's JLA #20-21 from 1998, and Andy Diggle and Pascal Ferry's eight-issue Adam Strange: Planet Heist from 2004 (which I reviewed 16 years ago). Three different creative teams separated by years, but picking up from one another to tell a related story. It's not by any stretch the full modern history of Adam Strange, but it's a good overview of his pre-Flashpoint years. Martian Manhunter could use a collection like this, Red Tornado, etc.

Aquaman & the Flash: Voidsong

Movie star meets movie star in paperback by Collin Kelly and Jackson Lanzing. I guess I had some idea this might tie in to Aquaman/Green Arrow: Deep Target, but the creative teams are totally different.

Batgirls Vol. 2

The second collection by Becky Cloonan and Michael Conrad, in paperback in March. I'm not going to spoil the guest starts in this one (as the solicitations do), but I'm very excited and I'm probably going to have to go back and finish reading a series I didn't finish before.

Batman: Detective Comics Vol. 1: The Neighborhood

Paperback collection of Mariko Tamaki’s issues #1034–1039. Per my review, a great premise with a not-as-satisfying ending.

Batman: The Dark Knight Detective Vol. 7

Collects Batman #474, Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #27, Detective Comics #634-638, #641, and #643, and Detective Comics Annual #4. Batman and Legends are in there as part of the "Destroyer" crossover, which introduced a new-look Gotham in line with the first Tim Burton movie; the annual is an "Armageddon 2001" tie-in. Stories written by Kelley Puckett, Louise Simonson, Peter Milligan, and Alan Grant.

Just for a little comparison, Detective issues #639-640 that aren’t included here are in the Batman: The Caped Crusader Vol. 5 collection; issue #642 is in the Caped Crusader Vol. 6 collection. Meanwhile, Batman #474, collected here, would have fallen between Caped Crusader Vols. 5 and 6. Caped Crusader Vol. 6 was, I’m pretty sure, the final volume of that series, ending just before the Prelude to Knightfall collection. I’m guessing Dark Knight Detectivehas one more volume to go to end before "Knightfall" and Detective #654.

Batman: The Detective

Paperback of Tom Taylor and Andy Kubert’s six-issue miniseries, following the hardcover. I liked this one, an unexpected Batman Elseworld.

Batman: The Imposter

Paperback, following the hardcover, of the Batman-movie adjacent miniseries by Mattson Tomlin and Andrea Sorrentino. I reviewed Batman: Imposter and thought it was pretty well done.

Batman/Superman: World’s Finest Vol. 1: The Devil Nezha

In hardcover by Mark Waid and Dan Mora, coming in March and collecting issue #1-6.

Birds of Prey: The End of the Beginning

Following the recent Birds of Prey: Whitewater, this is another larger-page-count collection of the original Birds of Prey series. Said to include issues #113-#127, so the original Birds of Prey: Metropolis or Dust and Platinum Flats, give or take a couple issues from elsewhere. Mostly written by Tony Bedard with a couple issues by Sean McKeever; this was after Gail Simone departed with issue #108 and before she returned for the second series.

Blue Beetle: Jaime Reyes Book Two

Second expanded collection of the Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle series. This collects issues #13-25 of the original 2006 series, so right on track (previous solicitations for this book seemed to reference issues from the middle of the Rebirth run). Still remains to be seen if the Blue Beetle movie goes ahead and how that might affect this.

Bruce Wayne: Not Super

Just love the offbeat premises of these DC young reader books. In this, by Stuart Gibbs and Berat Pekmezci, Bruce Wayne is the only non-powered kid in a school full of superheroes.

The DC Universe by Dwayne McDuffie

Collects a variety of Dwayne McDuffie's non-Milestone DC work, including Action Comics #847, Demon #26-29, Impulse #60, JLA Showcase 80-Page Giant #1, Batman: Gotham Knights #27, Sins of Youth: Kid Flash/Impulse #1, and Firestorm: The Nuclear Man #33-35, as well as a tribute(s) from the Static Shock Special.

Doom Patrol by Gerard Way and Nick Derington: The Deluxe Edition

Wouldn't mind seeing one of these for each of the Young Animal series. This is the Young Animal Doom Patrol #1-12 and Doom Patrol: Weight of the Worlds #1-7 by Gerard Way and Nick Derington, like it says on the tin, though lacking what seems to be the pretty essential Milk Wars material.

Girl Taking Over: A Lois Lane Story

Along with Bruce Wayne: Not Super, another fun premise for a DC YA book — teenage Lois Lane seeing drama in a summer reporting internship, by Sarah Kuhn and Arielle Jovellanos.

The Joker Vol. 3

Final collection of the James Tynion series, issues #10-15, before the series relaunch, coming in February in hardcover.

The Nice House on the Lake Vol. 2

Wait, wait. Did this slip? Not coming in December, but rather in March? That is just too cruel. Being the final collection of the horror series by James Tynion and Álvaro Martínez Bueno, collecting issues #7-12.

The Sandman Book Five

Collects the Sandman Mystery Theatre crossover special, Sandman Midnight Theatre, Sandman: Endless Nights, and seemingly just the prose edition of Sandman: Dream Hunters, though I'm surprised not also the comics adaption.

Superman: Action Comics Vol. 3: Warworld Revolution

The next collection by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Daniel Sampere, in paperback in February, collecting Action Comics #1043-1046, the Action Comics 2022 Annual #1, and Superman: Warworld Apocalypse. Ends just before the big crossover with Superman: Son of Kal-El.

The Swamp Thing Volume 3: The Parliament of Gears

The final collection of the limited series by Ram V and Mike Perkins, collecting issues #11-16, in paperback in February.

Teen Titans: Robin

Next in the popular YA Teen Titans series by Kami Garcia and Gabriel Picolo. Dick Grayson and Damian are actual brothers here?

Wonder Woman Vol. 3: The Villainy of Our Fears

In paperback in February by Becky Cloonan and Michael Conrad, following Trial of the Amazons. This is issues #787-794.

Wonder Woman: Who Is Wonder Woman the Deluxe Edition

I reviewed Who Is Wonder Woman? in 2008. Coming back into print since Allan Heinberg wrote the 2017 Wonder Woman movie. With art by Terry and Rachel Dodson.

Comments ( 12 )

  1. Definitely recommend Waid and Mora's World's Finest.

    I'd had my fill of Superman/Batman team-ups after the end of the Jeph Loeb era. I only read Williamson's run as it was a vital component of Snyder's Perpetua/Dark Multiverse epic (and I agree it should've just been a mini-series rather than an ongoing title).

    But the new World's Finest is Waid's grand return to monthly DC (after short stories here and there throughout 2021). So I cautiously gave it a try and I'm glad I did.

    It's neo-Silver Age, but it's great and loads of fun. A decade away from DC hasn't dulled Waid's DC storytelling muscles; his voices for Bruce and Clark are probably the best they've been written together as a team since Loeb.

    (The first arc's also mandatory reading as the prelude for the Batman vs. Robin event.)

  2. Superman, maybe BoP, and Batman: The Detective. Maybe also on WW - I'm going to reevaluate the run after I read the WW crossover. Since Batman/Superman is on here, I'll say I'm going to that I'm not that thrilled by Batman vs Robin and B/S being in HC - I'm really unsure about Lazarus Planet and having to read HCs to find out about it will not help.

    1. Yeah, I still keeping going back and forth on the Cloonan/Conrad Wonder Woman.

      Trial of the Amazons disrupted the run's momentum -- and I don't think the crossover quite stuck the landing.

      Not helping things was Wonder Girl's pre-event cancellation and Nubia being limited to mini-series and one-shots rather than a full ongoing monthly.

      But in the wake of Villainy of our Fears (and the new Nubia mini-series), it's becoming clearer what the overarching narrative/threat for the current WW-era is building towards.

      So, I'm *kinda* interested in seeing where this goes, but I also wouldn't be surprised if Cloonan and Conrad ultimately exit next year with Wondy #800.

    2. Well, I was not too keen on Cloonan and Conrad's first Wonder Woman volume, but your run-down of the next couple volumes does make me a little more optimistic.

    3. Yeah,

      The threat Nubia: Queen of the Amazons and the main Wonder Woman book are building towards is...

      Without spoiling things, it's not a *new* threat...but it's one that has the novelty of not having been used in this capacity in a while. It also aligns with a lot of the thematic setup from Afterworlds (you'll understand what I mean after reading Vol. 3).

      I do like that they've put Psycho back into focus during their run (even if it was to tie into his role in the Harley HBO series).

      The new Nubia mini-series also introduced a great new villain I hope sticks around, too.

    4. Cool! Excited to revisit this once I've read those books.

    5. Also recommend throwing in the Tales of the Amazons collection, as some of these one-shots (like the Nubia Coronation Special and Olympus Rebirth issue) are all setups and payoffs to the overarching WW narrative.

    6. Where does Tales of the Amazons fit in? After Trial of the Amazons, I think?

    7. It's mostly set after Trial of the Amazons, but it will include the backups from Wonder Woman #781-784, which are set before the crossover. I wish they had been collected in the second WW volume by Cloonan and Conrad instead.

    8. Yes, it's both before and after Trial.

      Going from the collected edition's contents, it collects the Bana-Mighdall backups that were running in Wonder Woman during the final lead-up to the event. Definitely essential as a prelude.

      The rest of the one-shots are set afterward and further explore the fallout while setting up the recent Nubia mini-series and other ongoing developments the main WW book's slowly starting to get to.

  3. Nice to see Beetle book 2 coming out next year. Probably one of the few dc collections I will buy next year.


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