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Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

Comic Books

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

Chris shares his favorite covers from this week’s new comics.

Most comic book fans have a pretty good idea what they’re going to buy every week when they visit their local comic shop. With that said, there’s still a lot of fun to be had just glancing at the week’s new releases and taking a chance on a book that looks promising. That’s where covers come in. A fantastic image can make the difference between trying something new or saying, “Nah, not this week.”

In that spirit, here are the covers that captured our attention this week, with entries from comics editor Chris Coplan.

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The Avengers #42

Cover by Leinil Yu

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

There’s been some pretty amazing things happening over at The Avengers in recent months. After writer Jason Aaron went and showed us all just how dope Moon Knight truly is, he’s changed pace effortlessly to focus on the Phoenix Force. Specifically, how said cosmic power will now be wielded by an Avengers member. So that’s all you really need to know to explain this epic cover, which is sort of brain-meltingly awesome given just the sheer insanity of it all. So, who really deserves to wield the mighty Phoenix Force? Why not Black Panther just because of how dope his custom has become. Or read the story and find out the actual truth, IDK.

Far Sector #10

Cover by Jamal Campbell

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

Sojourner “Jo” Mullein is the hardest working Green Lantern in the entire universe. Because just as she’s assigned to the corps, she’s shipped off to the end of the cosmos to oversee a planet with no violent crime for 500 years — just in time for a murder most foul to crack off this intergalactic sci-fi mystery. And it’s not just that she’s worked hard to do well, but Jo has always maintained some of her trademark wit and sarcasm throughout, as evidenced by this most excellent cover to issue #10. Because no matter the odds, Jo is still Jo, and the profound personality is central to this truly thoughtful story. Also, do her glasses get bigger every issue?

Luna #1

Cover by Maria Llovet

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

If you haven’t seen much of Maria Llovet’s work before, drop what you’re doing and read Faithless. When you’re done with that — I can wait if need be — come back here so I can tell you about Luna. Here, our titular heroine becomes embroiled with a ’60s cult the Family of the Sun, and the resulting story promises “immortality, magic and alchemy, and the true power of enduring love.” But forget all that and just look at Llovet’s cover for the debut, which feels like the magical love child of a spy novel, some classy erotica, a 16th century magical compendium, a ’70s grindhouse movie poster, and maybe just a dash of mainstream superheroes. Either way, I’m already over the “luna” about this little project.

Hellions #9

Cover by Stephen Segovia

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

Speaking of mysteries with Far Sector, the Hellions are facing one of their own as Mr. Sinister has seemingly vanished. The hook, then, is whether the team, who have never really had what you might call a “traditional” superhero squad dynamic, can pull together and save everyone’s favorite bonkers mad scientist. Is there some larger ideas or motif being explored in this cover to issue #9? Perhaps — it could be about the absurdly cyclical existence of mutants on Krakoa. Or the Hellions’ efforts to work toward their goals and the slightly Sisyphean tendencies that have developed. But it could just be really cool to look at. Either way, it feels super on brand with this mostly entertaining book.

Future State: The Next Batman #3

Cover by José Ladrönn

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

If you read my column from this week, you’ll know how Future State has become something truly special. More specifically, it’s been both a massive shot of wondrous nostalgia while also reminding us of a better, more inclusive path forward. It’s an event and a collection of books all about the promise of change and what a good fight can actually earn you. But don’t forget it’s also just a really great excuse to showcase some badass action scenes, as evidenced by this cover to The Next Batman. Tim Fox goes toe-to-toe with some Magistrate bullies, controlling the action with punches and kicks while hundreds of feet in the air. Get you a comics event that can do both, y’all.

Deep Beyond #1

Cover by Andrea Broccardo

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

Here’s the one reason you should read this new Image Comics series: it was described like “The 100 meets LOW, with a hint of Death Stranding.” OK, need a second reason just in case? How about this cover. The whole series is supposed to be about an “underpopulated future Earth” and the scientists exploring the mysterious deeps in order to perpetuate mankind’s razor-thin survival. But it’s not just the threats outside that prove most treacherous, and these essential intellects are also fighting among themselves despite their totally important mission. All of that translates to this cover, which does a truly terrifying job of conflating these ideas and emotions until you don’t actually know who the real monsters are and what they might have planned. My guess? It’s going to be a bloodbath at every level.

King in Black: Black Knight #1

Cover by Dan Mora

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

Before the series proper begins in March, writer Simon Spurrier will re-introduce Black Knight in a tie-in issue for the King in Black. Here, Dane Whitman and the Ebony Blade are in Shanghai, trying to fight off the hordes of invading Symbiotes while maintaining some control over the mighty influence of his most magical sword. How that translates on the cover is some of that sweet unbridled violence that Whitman has feared falling victim to being expertly expressed into the dome of some nasty, bat-looking Symbiote. As far as “returns” go, it’s a pretty memorable one overall, and let’s hope we get more of the same from the actual debut. Possible tagline: “Knife to meet you.”

Future State: Wonder Woman #2

Cover by Joëlle Jones

Judging by the Cover – 02/03/21 new releases

If you’re a little confused, this story features a new Wonder Woman, Yara Flor, working to save her sisters in Themyscira. And in issue #2, she’s forced to go through literal Hell to fight off the scourges of evil and save her sisters. Some of you may not be down for a new Baddest Amazon on the Planet, but Flor has already proven herself to be an interesting addition to this canon, especially with this cover. Who else could use Cerberus and a Pegasus to smash through the gates of actual Hell in order to crack people/demons in the face? And, quick follow-up, who can do so with such unrelenting joy strewn across their face? Change can be good — if it’s this powerful and crazy.

They Fell From the Sky #1

Cover by Xavier Tarrega

Judging by the Cover

Truth be told, I’m not exactly blown away by the premise of this new Mad Cave series. It’s basically a re-telling of E.T. (with a dash of Mars Attacks!), and that’s been done so many times I hope the little bugger never gets back to his people. That said, it’s the art that’s really pulled me into this latest tale of “boy meets alien.” There’s something kind of early 2000s Nickelodeon about it, something that’s really sweet and silly but also a little weird to boot. Is the alien fully humanoid or maybe some kind of giant lizard poured into the suit? And what’s up with with appears to be toxic sludge around the ship? If the art remains this good inside the actual book, this could be a promising new book.

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