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This Week's Essential Comics: 6/30/14

These are the comics you're looking for.

New comic book day is almost here! This Wednesday, dozens of new issues will become available and it can sometimes be an overwhelming experience, especially if you're working with a budget. Luckily for you, the Comic Vine staff is here to help. We've reviewed the list of new comics and each of us picked some comics that we're very excited to check out. Once you're done seeing what we can't wait to read, feel free to chime in with your own picks.

*Some previews may be in reverse order*

Tony "G-Man" Guerrero's picks

ROCKET RACCOON #1

Let’s be honest, it’s hard to resist the charm of Rocket Raccoon. With all the buzz and excitement over the Guardians of the Galaxy, it makes perfect sense to see the characters venture out into their own series. Who better to chronicle the solo adventures of Rocket Raccoon than Skottie Young?

It should be an interesting mix. Skottie Young’s art is appealing to all ages but this is a T+ book and is set in continuity. That means if you’re following the Guardians’ adventures, you won’t want to miss out on this. Plus, with Skottie and Rocket, how could you not want to check this out.

CLICK HERE to check out our early review.

LEGENDARY STAR-LORD #1

Hey, look at this. It’s another Guardians of the Galaxy spin off series. Star-Lord on his own, just as Rocket on his own, makes sense. The Guardians don’t spend all their time together so why not let us see what happens during those times. As great as team books are, the characters don’t always get a chance to fully shine or develop when sharing the limelight with others. If seeds are planted here and explored in the GUARDIANS series or vice versa, fans of the characters win.

Sam Humphries and Paco Medina are ready to flesh out the character to answer the question of who is the Legendary Star-Lord.

CLICK HERE to read our early review.

MOON KNIGHT #5

Moon Knight is a character I deeply love. I would look forward to an issue with him no matter what. Having the current creative team has been extraordinary. Warren Ellis’ single story approach in each issues might feel a little jarring but it’s a great way for us to see mission after mission that Moon Knight is going on. It’s been allowing us to see more action with him as each issue needs to jump into things quickly.

Declan Shalvey’s art and Jordie Bellaire’s colors have elevated each story to a new level. From the few preview pages we get with this issue, you can already tell this is going to be another stellar issue.

ORIGINAL SIN #5

What’s this? Another new issue of ORIGINAL SIN? This is truly a case where I am excited for the rapid shipping. This is the type of story where you don’t want to have to sit and wait 30 days for the next installment.

We’re passed the halfway point. We’ve already seen some crazy things but it sounds like we’ll be getting some answers in this issue. After the revelations already revealed, you have to wonder what Jason Aaron and Mike Deodato will throw at us next.

Honorable Mention: TINY TITANS RETURN TO THE TREEHOUSE #2

Mat "Inferiorego" Elfring's picks

FIGMENT #2

Surprisingly enough, I really enjoyed the first issue of this kid-friendly mini-series based off of a ride at Epcot featuring a robotic, purple dragon. The idea is a bit silly, but after giving it a go, I found that it was a pretty fun concept filled with a delightful story. Normally, I'm not a fan of the whole steampunk culture, but FIGMENT didn't overdo it. There's a lot of familiar elements within the book, and it makes you feel like a kid again. If you're looking for something a little light-hearted with a very solid creative team behind it, then this is something you may want to pick up.

NAILBITER #3

Ok, let's talk serial killers. What a transition! If you're looking for a book a bit more on the adult side, you may want to check out NAILBITER. You may want to pick up the first two issues, but it'll be worth it. Writer Josh Williamson is setting up one hell of a story and some extremely interesting characters. There are very few horror comics out there that get the creepy feeling across, on the page, without trying to rely on maximum guts and gore. NAILBITER accomplishes that incredibly well, and it's easily one of the best horror books currently on-going, even though it's just 3 issues in.

Gregg "k4tz" Katzman's picks

GREEN ARROW #33

GREEN ARROW has been a blast since the new creative team jumped on with #17. Writer Jeff Lemire has taken big steps to expand Oliver Queen's mythos and supporting cast. We've seen everything from Oliver's origin story to his family tree get a new level of attention, but now it's time for the Emerald Archer's villains to shine! Lemire has brought Green Arrow back to Seattle and the incredibly skilled Richard Dragon has taken over the city. The martial artist has formed his own personal army of fiends and the villainous team made an explosive debut in the last chapter. Now it's time to see what'll happen next.

Not only are the villains being put front and center, but a key character from The Outsiders War has come to the city (will this be the new person under the hood?) and, of course, John Diggle will get more focus, too!

And then there's artist Andrea Sorrentino and colorist Marcelo Maiolo's pages. These two are immensely talented and produce some gorgeous and creative visuals with each and every issue. This series will always leave your eyes very, very pleased.

You can always count on GREEN ARROW for two things: jaw-dropping artwork and entertaining stories.

THOR: GOD OF THUNDER #24

The Last Days of Midgard was yet another excellent story in this series. Jason Aaron made sure the tale hit all of the right notes. There was a clear message but it wasn't heavy-handed, the characters were well-written, and the action was very worthy of many "KRAKABOOM!" onomatopoeias. As exciting and as entertaining as the events may have been, there was a very strong underlying message and it offered a surprisingly good focus on who Thor is and what he stands for.

If you've been reading along, then you know it wasn't exactly a happy ending in the modern timeline. This chapter promises to follow-up on the story's aftermath and, considering how stellar Aaron's writing has been with this book, I'm anxious to see how these events will be handled. Plus, have you seen Agustin Alessio's art?! No? Then I command you to look at the preview!

DEADPOOL VS X-FORCE #1

Deadpool first met Cable back in NEW MUTANTS #98... or did he?! According to Duane Swierczynski's new limited series, Wade Wilson bumped into X-Force before that classic issue. The Merc With a Mouth is creating chaos as he goes through the time stream and it's up to Cable's team to stop him. Yeah, this sounds like a ridiculous dose of fun, doesn't it?

Swierczynski's previous work shows he can handle this cast and this kind of story. We know he can thrive with tons of action (BLOODSHOT), and he's worked with both of these leads before, too (CABLE, DEADPOOL: WADE WILSON'S WAR). Here's hoping this debut issue is every bit as enjoyable as it should be!

Honorable Mention: PUNISHER #8

Jen "MissJ" Aprahamian's picks

SOUTHERN BASTARDS #3

The Jasons (Aaron and Latour) are killing it with this series, immersing us in a world that is rich and real and dirty and corrupt and all sorts of other adjectives that come with small towns. Earl Tubb has found his father's legendary stick -- and his father's sense of justice -- and is about to start using it. I'm expecting plenty of violence, plenty of history, and plenty of brisket.

LAZARUS #9

It's Lift Selection time, and as the second volume of LAZARUS comes to a close (Issue #10 is a standalone), everything we've been following hurtles towards resolution. Following the struggles of the Waste has been a truly interesting shift after the tight-knit drama of the first arc, and this latest stretch of narrative has added different dimensions to the Families (and Forever). Rucka and Lark have been delivering issue after issue of fascinating, near-future drama, and the bigger the world gets the more interesting it is -- it's a beautifully-executed book that's just too interesting to trade-wait.

Honorable Mention: WOODS #3

Corey "Undeadpool" Schroeder's picks

MILES MORALES: ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #3

This book is, as the kids are still saying, OFF THE CHAIN. All joking aside, in the three issues after Cataclysm, it's managed to open up an incredible number of seemingly divergent plot lines, from introducing us all to Ultimate Kate Bishop, to not one, but TWO shocking character returns which may or may not stick around. Brian Bendis is famous for screwing with his audience, and this book is no exception, but there's a playful funness to being wound around the way Bendis writes. David Marquez's visuals are nothing short of stunning and the sheer level of detail on every panel and in every character makes this one of the most interesting books to look at as well as read.

BLACK WIDOW #8

Black Widow and Winter Soldier? In the same issue of Nate Edmondson and Phil Noto's masterful title? To paraphrase Stan Lee: That information alone is enough to inform a purchasing decision! And it sounds like it's going to be a present day story to boot! This book has been a model of consistency both of tone and aesthetic and I can't think of a reason that would let up this issue, or any subsequent ones. It does look like last issue's foray to the City by the Bay was a one-off, and this one sounds like it may be as well, but if this book wants to have standalone issues preceding a larger story arc, that's a pattern I would have little trouble supporting.

EARTH 2 #25

The uptick this book's been on has been slow yet steady and with the revelation of the previous issue, I'm ready to ready to hop aboard Tom Taylor and the Scotts' continuing tale of an alternate DC Earth, one becoming more and more different by the issue. Val-Zod's pacifism may have finally reached its limits against the brutal, unstoppable Superman and the Hunger Dogs of Apokolips and I'm hoping for a payoff worthy of the legendary buildup that's been brewing over the last two story arcs. I've had complaints about the issues, but the way it's brought all of its characters together has been organic and the book never wants for excitement.

Honorable Mention: ALL-NEW X-FACTOR #10

Follow us on Twitter: CV, Tony, Mat, Gregg, Jen, Corey.

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Edited by Ultron345

In this weeks essential Marvel comics we have.........

Posted by k4tzm4n

@ultron345: Care to promote the books you're purchasing this Wednesday? ;)

Staff Online
Edited by The Stegman

Nail Biter

Punisher

Black Widow

Batman Eternal

Batman/Superman

Green Arrow

Earth 2

Posted by CaptainHoopla

Massive week for me.

Southern Bastards, Lazarus, Moon Knight, Black Widow, Punisher, Original Sin, Thor, Legendary Star-Lord, Rocket Raccoon, Batman Eternal, & I guess Superman Unchained (which I may wait to read until the last two issues come out, so probably in about 8 months, thanks Jim Lee).

Posted by Xwraith

No Green Arrow preview?

Online
Posted by k4tzm4n
@xwraith said:

No Green Arrow preview?

Unfortunately, I was unable to find one.

Staff Online
Edited by GraniteSoldier

Rocket Motherf**kin' Raccoon

Posted by longbowhunter

Awesome week this week!

Black Widow #8

Clone #18

Green Arrow #33

Lazarus #9

Magneto #6

Moon Knight #5

Nailbiter #3

Sheltered #10

Southern Bastards #3

Swamp Thing #33

Edited by dagmar_merrill

Green Arrow comes out this week?

Online
Posted by DrellAssassin

@ultron345: Lot of Marvel titles to be excited about this week, however the exclusion of Superman Unchained is surprising.

Edited by Transformers1024

Rocket Raccoon and Legendary Star-Lord for me. I may also catch up on Guardians of the Galaxy since I'm a bit far behind.

I'm tempted to drop Futures End.

Posted by Renchamp

Stoked to see how DvsX-F works into the 80s/90s continuity. Also, Moon Knight!

Moderator
Posted by MadeinBangladesh

MOON KNIGHT AND GREEN ARROW!!! Street levelers run this game!!!!

Edited by Ultron345

@k4tzm4n: I good sir don't work for one of the largest comic book sites. What I promote is irrelevant. 9 Marvel titles out of 14 books shows pretty accurately what ComicVine promotes :).

Posted by longbowhunter

@ultron345: It also shows pretty accurately that Marvel is delivering the goods week in and week out.

Edited by k4tzm4n

@ultron345 said:

@k4tzm4n: I good sir don't work for one of the largest comic book sites. What I promote is irrelevant. 9 Marvel titles out of 12 books shows pretty accurately what ComicVine promotes :).

Don't sell yourself short. We're all here to discuss comics. Perhaps something you're picking up and passionate about will spark a conversation or maybe motivate someone to check it out. Additionally, we had a total of 15 books featured last week. Marvel's grand total? 3. The staff may have their different preferences, but each of us appreciate a fair amount of titles from a number of publishers. It just so happens that Marvel is unleashing a number of new titles and continuing quite a few good ones this week.

Staff Online
Edited by DrellAssassin

@k4tzm4n: I good sir don't work for one of the largest comic book sites. What I promote is irrelevant. 9 Marvel titles out of 12 books shows pretty accurately what ComicVine promotes :).

Have you seen DC's lineup for this week? Not the most exciting bunch.

Edited by VanderSEXXX

Superman: Unchained coming out this week? Gonna add that then alongside Punisher #8, Original Sin #5, and Futures End #9.

Posted by BillyFamine

Massive for me:
Punisher 8
Magneto 6
Batman Eternal 13
Futures End 9
Action Comics 33
Batman Superman 12
Earth 2 25
Green Arrow 33
Justice League 3000 8
Superman Unchained 7
Southern Bastards 3
Nailbiter 3
Dexters Laboratory 4


Batman Eternal is one I'm sort of iffy on. Story goes all over the place.

Posted by micah
  • Futures End
  • Earth 2
  • Original Sin
  • Ultimate Spider-Man
  • Justice League Beyond
  • Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye
Posted by Z3RO180

Figment,Thor,Star lord, OS and Unchained for me

Posted by Walzo

@k4tzm4n: I good sir don't work for one of the largest comic book sites. What I promote is irrelevant. 9 Marvel titles out of 14 books shows pretty accurately what ComicVine promotes :).

Yes, and last week there was only like 4.

You don't know what you're talking about, please stop embarrassing yourself.

Posted by Ultron345

@drellassassin: I didn't mention DC. There are more than 2 comic publishers.

Posted by Ultron345

@walzo: If you'd like I can go and collect the last 10 of these and put averages on the publishers? Marvel dominates this thread week in week out. Last week was the anomaly not the norm. I'd prefer you say something like @longbowhunter and just say Marvel dominates the industry than to say they don't dominate this thread and site.

Posted by MK5

Rocket Raccoon! Yay Scottie Young!

You're making me interested in Moon Knight, especially after sharing the dreamscape.

Posted by Fastestmanalive

Aquaman and the others #4 - Been hit and miss so far but will judge when the first story line concludes.

Superman Unchained #7 - OF COURSE!!!

Action Comics #33 - Doomed story continues.

Batman/Superman #12 - Been waiting for this issue a long time. Sounds good.

Batman Eternal #13 - Last issue was great so hope they continue that story line in this issue.

Posted by derf_jenkins

The second line states comics come out on Friday...are we going back to that?

Posted by mak13131313

My pull list for the week,

1. Action Comics #33

2. Aquaman and The Others #4

3. Batman Eternal #13

4. Batman/Superman #12

5. Batman '66 Meets The Green Hornet #2

6. Earth 2 #25

7. Futures End #9

8. Green Arrow #33

9. Green Lantern #33

10. superman Unchained #7

11. Nailbiter #3

12. Uber #15

13. Big Trouble in Little China #2

14. Suicide Risk #15

15. Captain America #22

Posted by RobotinDisguise

AQUAMAN AND THE OTHERS #4

GUARDIANS OF GALAXY GALAXYS MOST WANTED #1

LEGENDARY STAR LORD #1

ROCKET RACCOON #1

Posted by ScrappyDont27

Captain America and moon knight for me

Posted by TheCheeseStabber

I don't get the hype for Southern Bastards, I only read it for the art.

Posted by jstndmnd

Just New Warriors. Loving the series.

Dropped Earth-2 last month. Now I'm only reading 1 DC comic--Aquaman!

He is the coolest superhero out there.

Posted by yo_yo_fun

For me this week: Aquaman and the Others #4, Lazarus #9, The Twilight Zone #6 and Madame Frankenstein #3.

Posted by dcfox

I think it's funny that Comicvine would ever be accused of being pro Marvel. No offense to the staff, but I always felt this site skewed way heavier towards DC. Just look at the ratio of Marvel/DC creators on the podcast and in videos. Just to clarify, this is not a criticism.

Posted by Jayc1324

Batman Eternal

Batman/Superman

SUPERMAN UNCHAINED YES FINALLY

Thor: God of Thunder

Original sin

Posted by timelord

DC Comics

  • Action Comics #33
  • Batman Eternal #13
  • Earth 2 #25
  • Grayson #1
  • Green Arrow #33
  • Green Lantern #33
  • The New 52: Futures End #9
  • Superman Unchained #7

Trades

  • Green Lantern Corps Vol. 4: Rebuild TP
  • Superboy Vol. 4: Blood and Steel TP
Posted by Ultron345

@k4tzm4n: Honestly you never cease to amaze me. Even in the face of criticism you always keep your cool and respond intelligently. If I ever met you I would shake your hand. On a different note do you guys pay particular attention to new titles? There are always a bunch of #1's and 2's in these lists. I feel like books that have been going on for a while get less attention. Probably just comes with the territory of running a comic site? The new hotness needs to be talked about.

Posted by V_Scarlotte_Rose

@ultron345: Do you think the staff should be required to make their recommendations balanced between publishers instead of suggesting the things they're most excited about overall?

If you do think Marvel are getting featured more, could it be that their comics are just most popular at the moment? They've certainly been the best seller over the past year:

Posted by Ultron345

@v_scarlotte_rose: I think the staff should be made up of a diverse group of people who like more than one company or comic that way you can achieve a diverse list while maintaining enthusiasm. Also does that graph take into account the # of books shipped? Marvel NOW! bringing new #1's every month or so and Marvel publishing the most books of any company would tend to make them sell more. Sales and quality do not directly correlate as well. How many horrible movies have you seen make a truck ton of money (e.g. Star Wars prequels)?

Posted by k4tzm4n

@k4tzm4n: Honestly you never cease to amaze me. Even in the face of criticism you always keep your cool and respond intelligently. If I ever met you I would shake your hand. On a different note do you guys pay particular attention to new titles? There are always a bunch of #1's and 2's in these lists. I feel like books that have been going on for a while get less attention. Probably just comes with the territory of running a comic site? The new hotness needs to be talked about.

Thank you very much.

After looking at the full list of new releases (usually via Diamond Comics), we have one simple objective: pick 2 or more comics that have us legitimately excited. We won't add a debut issue if we're not feeling mostly positive about it and have more of a "wait and see" feeling. But if a new series has us feeling thoroughly optimistic, we'll give it our love. And, if it does indeed blow us away, it's safe to assume said staff member will be tempted to give it a highlight spot when the second issue comes around.

Now, seeing as Marvel and DC really do dominate the medium and release a large number of issues per week, it's not surprising that a majority of the picks will be from the Big Two. We do our best to make sure other publishers receive attention, though, but when it comes to this segment, it's all about what we love and what has us feeling optimistic. If that means one publisher has a greater number of representation, then so be it. We're not focused on the publisher -- we're focused on the title.

That said, the format of this segment changed a decent amount of time ago in hopes of giving you all more variety. Previously, only a few of us would pick 5 or so comics in total. Now, every member of the staff gets to share their personal favorites and hopefully that'll connect with a wider range of readers. At the end of the day, we simply want to support what we love. It just so happens that Marvel has impressed a fair amount of us over the last several months.

I still suggest you to speak your mind about what has you excited. I know you think it's just a comment that'll be overlooked, but if you're giving praise to comics aren't commonly discussed, it just may generate some interest in them and give you the opportunity to produce a new fan of whatever the title may be.

Staff Online
Edited by IDontLikeBirds

Love that Moon Knight cover, looks like an homage to Oldboy's famous fight scene (the original, not the remake).

Posted by patrat18

Yeesh! Just call it Marvels essential comics.

Posted by patrat18

My pull list for the week,

1. Action Comics #33

2. Aquaman and The Others #4

3. Batman Eternal #13

4. Batman/Superman #12

5. Batman '66 Meets The Green Hornet #2

6. Earth 2 #25

7. Futures End #9

8. Green Arrow #33

9. Green Lantern #33

10. superman Unchained #7

11. Nailbiter #3

12. Uber #15

13. Big Trouble in Little China #2

14. Suicide Risk #15

15. Captain America #22

Posted by davidgrantlloyd

Action Comics #33

Aquaman and the Others #4

Magneto #6

Miracleman #8

Superman Unchained #7

Big Trouble in Little China #2

Southern Basards #3

Satellite Sam #9

The Twilight Zone #6

Vampirella #2

Weird Love #2

Black Kiss XXXmas Special

Caliban #4

Posted by Winter_Kills

Wow, lots of good stuff this week! Marvel is killin' it, and my wallet! My choices are: Black Widow(for obvious reasons), Rocket Raccoon, Legendary Star-Lord, Moon Knight, Original Sin & Thor: God of Thunder. (Thor & MK consistently make it onto my list!)

Posted by IronAngelX

Really?! Superman Unchained wasn't in that list? It's only been 3-4 months since we last picked up an issue of that series and Snyder and Lee have both been doing great things with it.

Posted by DCWarFan73

Love that Moon Knight cover, looks like an homage to Oldboy's famous fight scene (the original, not the remake).

There is only one Oldboy.

Posted by rac_shade

• My pull list this week :-

• Black Widow #8

• Captain America #22

• DKW : Ditko Kirby Wood (One Shot)

• East Of West #13

• Iron Fist The Living Weapon #4

• Lazarus #9

• Magneto #6

• Moon Knight #5

• Nailbiter #3

• Rocket Raccoon #1

• Sheltered #10

• Sidekick #7

• Southern Bastards #3

• Thor God Of Thunder #24

Edited by monsterduc1000

I can't believe Southern Bastards makes anyones list. So far all it is a rip off of Walking Tall/"I hate my dad so I'm leaving town but then coming back and cleaning up this sh!t hole" concept that has been done WAY too many times. Such an overused, tired concept and this one has brought absolutely nothing new to the table. I could barely finish the first couple issues without saying "WTF!!! This is TERRIBLE!!!"

Posted by sparty-dbq

Original Sin comes out this week? I didn't see any previews of it anywhere.

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