No New Stories?

In regards to the usual Marvel and DC capes and tights books. Obviously no, there are new stories out there. Court of the Owls was great, All-New X-Men is a new concept for the X-Men, and Superior Spider-Man is something no one would think to do ever since Quantum Leap.

But still, it's just fighting baddies, psyching yourself up for the next conflict, family drama and the city hating you and everything in between, isn't it? Sometimes.

Then again, "there aren't any new stories, just new characters." (Credit: Someone.) X-Men's new characters is an all-female team. Rotworld was Swamp Thing and Animal Man meeting for the first time. Guardians of the Galaxy threw Iron Man into the mix and now Angela is showing up to shake things up. Which means if something looks like a rehashed story, it will unfold in a different way.

Is that an excuse to keep reading your favorite heroes in their books month after month? Sure! But I'm starting to see the appeal that independent titles from Image, Dark Horse and Dynamite have. One friend of mine buys almost nothing but those, and I find myself longing more and more for the extra cash to pick up The Wake, Fables, Saga, and a few other unique concepts (Masks, Five Ghosts) on a monthly basis, and almost feel like dropping my Big Two titles to experience something new.

Anyone else have experience in their comic collecting? Realizing the repetition of the capes and tights? Longing for something completely out of the ordinary seen in the independent publishers? Anyone made such a switch or have great praise for their buying habits just like what I've described above?

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Villains' Month: Why DC Hurts My Wallet

Of course September's "Villains' Month" from DC is a money making scheme, but that won't stop me ranting about it. And Marvel begs for my money too, as evident by my grabbing extra comics not on my pull list for the X-Men: Battle of the Atom crossover. But the fact that some titles have FOUR issues associated with it in September is asking a bit much from subscribers.

Batman has 4 issues. Batman and Robin has 4. Justice League has 4. Superman has 4. Wonder Woman is getting 2. Aquaman gets 2. Etc etc. And then titles like Supergirl, Batgirl, Animal Man, Dial H, and more don't get even one.

Supergirl could get H'El, Batgirl could get the Ventriloquist (it's penned by Simone anyway!), Dial H could get Justice League's E Dial... see where I'm going with this? There are plenty of baddies to go around, why place them in titles and make fans pay 2 or 4 times more than they usually do per month. Or, as someone who subscribes to Batman, that's 4 more titles in one month to have a complete collection, but that doesn't make me want to buy the Lex Luthor issue of Superman. Or the Two-Face issue of Batman and Robin.

I'm no marketing salesman, but as far as customer-friendliness go, wouldn't great stories have evolved for each of the 52 titles if DC told that title's writer to have at it with one baddie, instead of stretching boundaries and writers offering them villains not associated with their title (like Soule's turned-down offer to do a non-Red Lantern villain)?

Just my two cents, and apparently an extra $12 just to have all the Batman issues.* I'm unsure if I'll be able to expand my reading in September. I probably would have spent that extra $12 on other Villains, but now...idk.

*I'm half tempted not to buy any "Batman" titles in September and hope beyond hope they'll be in the trade collection along with Batman #18-20 (not appearing in the Death of the Family trade).

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Wolverine & the X-Men, I Want to Quit You

Count me among the Wolverine and the X-Men fans that have become disgruntled with the recent storyarcs. I've held my ground these past few months, but as I realize I want to add another title to my pull I should drop one, and W&XM is the logical choice. The Circus story was over the (big) top, we've seen less and less of school headmastering/mistrissing and Jean Grey School shenanigans, and this Savage Land story isn't really providing us character development among the new/featured students. Everything since AvX (aside from Doop's issue #17) just wasn't the same as the beginnings.

This was one of my first comic series I got when I started collecting, but I might have to quit it to get more bang for my buck with whatever title I choose next. (On that note, how is Daniel Wood's writing? X-Men issue 1 sounds original, and it'll lead up to Battle of the Atom.)

It'd really help if Marvel took a page from DC and only had one issue per month. (And had at least 6 issues per graphic novel.)

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Best Flash Stories/Introduction?

I'm looking for trade paperback recommendations for storyarcs for The Flash. My friend is a fan (from the 90's JL TV show), but I've never been intrigued enough to try Barry out (even though I know there's more to him than just running super quickly).

So, where should I start? What trades should I pick up? Is the Flashpoint main-story any good? Is the New 52 volume 1 a nice introduction? What else is out there I should look at to see Flash (and/or the writing) at his prime?

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Lack of April DC Gatefold Covers

Unfortunately, there are issue 19s (et al) of DC covers that aren't gatefold. In particular, I'm talking about the ones that my Barnes and Noble got. I'm sure comic shops everywhere (like the one I buy from) got all gatefold covers, but the fact that DC even printed non-gatefold covers shocked me when I put our comic shipment on the shelves.

Were I someone who only bought comics at B&N I'd be extremely disappointed.

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Guardians of the Galaxy Crossovers?

Has there been any word on what's in store for the Guardians of the Galaxy title? Not spoilers or anything large like that, but if it will tie in with Nova or Thanos Rising perhaps. Is something leading up to a crossover for a few issues? And not just Rocket and Gamora appearing in Nova, but a full-fledged team up to fight a baddie.

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Another Fan Asking About Blackest Night

I know I'm not the first, so I've dug a little digging. Still, it has to be asked (and more than once), where's the best place to start, and what collected trade paperbacks are (and aren't) necessary for Green Lantern: Blackest Night?

-From what I can tell, there are some key main-story titles, including Blackest Night, BN: Green Lantern, and BN: GL Corps.

-There are some preludes that might be fun to read, but I don't know if they are necessary or written in high quality: Sinestro Corps War (parts 1 and 2), Rage of the Red Lanterns, GLC: Sins of the Star Sapphire, GL: Agent Orange, and GLC: Emerald Eclipse.

-What about the titles called Black Lanterns? BN: Black Lantern Corps vol 1 and 2 and Rise of the Black Lanterns? Do those complete the story?

-And I heard I'd be better off staying away from Brightest Day aside from Aquaman's and Deadman's storyarcs.

Not only what is and isn't worth reading, but which of the preludes come first? And what is the order of the main-story tpbs?

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Popular Savage Land

The Savage Land keeps popping up recently. Wolverine was just there in Savage Wolverine #1, Wolverine and the X-Men is heading there with #25, and I think some Avengers were there a month or so ago. Something big going to happen soon?

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Add a Title to my Pull!

I'm looking for another title to add to my pull list by April. Here's my rambling:

-Does anyone know/heard anything about this new Guardians of the Galaxy title coming next month? It's written by Bendis, so I trust it's quality, but I'm still hesitant to dish out my dollars to the unknown. Especially if it's a bimonthly title, which costs double.

-My other thought was to subscribe to the main Age of Ultron title, which I believe will be bimonthly for 5 months if I'm not mistaken. But alas, Marvel events are questionable until they actually occur. Thoughts?

(My Marvel side of my pull includes Wolverine and the X-Men, Uncanny X-Men, and Gambit. I'm still kind of irked about Amazing Spider-Man's ending to consider Superior Spidey an option.)

-If I wanted to be cheaper, DC always only publishes monthly (and they'reusually $3). I'm reading Batman, Swamp Thing, and Animal Man, and grabbing Batgirl, Nightwing, and Aquaman from my brother (oh and Hawkeye. Best title out there right now). I was thinking that Green Lantern could be a good addition, given that their event just wrapped up, so it's a good jumping on point for a new story arc. But there are so many options among the 52 titles.

Anyone reading anything good that has a good jumping on point coming up by April?

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