While there’s nothing particularly interesting about the story itself, I can’t help but think of FaZe x Batman, a new DC comic book series that pairs Batman with the real guys on a team of real-life professional gamers. It’s a cynical campaign that’s overloaded with merchandising – rather than offering story details, promotional material instead focuses on tie-ins with jerseys, t-shirts, hoodies, mice, key caps and a PJ set.
Incredibly, there is no associated NFT, although this collaboration is imbued with the same toxic spirit.
Who do you think approached who with this? Did the players show up at Warner Bros, or did an LA executive say “my kid is really into something called ForkNightgoing to make a comic about it so we can sell pajamas”?
I wish they were more direct and had Batman hosted a segment on QVC. Never mind. The good news is that there are a few comics that really deserve your attention this week – thanks to Phoenix for helping sort through a particularly thick pile of new releases!
BRUJA SEASON NUMBER #1
I can’t expect more from this daring series about an impulsive young bruja – a practitioner of witchcraft – and her patient grandmother, both dedicated to battling demons. Althalia is the last of her kind, exorcising evil with the help of a friendly Chupacabra and a werecoyote. Her grandmother, who pulls her teeth for this kind of work, spends her time in a museum amid cultural treasures looted by white colonizers. This is where a malevolent force appears, on a mission to annihilate the women. A wonderful blend of magical action-adventure and heartfelt family time (chosen and organic), this first issue keeps a steady pace with winning characters. Every woman is brave and courageous in her own way, and their affection is evident even in times of interpersonal conflict. It’s flagged as an adult book, but I’d feel comfortable sharing it with readers 12 and up, especially those looking for stories featuring women and Hispanic culture.
Screenwriter: Aaron Duran. Drawing: Sara Soler. Letters: Jaime Martinez.
ASTRO CITY: THAT WAS THEN… (SPECIAL)
Useless for all but the most dedicated fans, this new single issue catches up with some characters from the acclaimed 90s astro city series (now in paperback) and tease new adventures to come at a later date. And as the teasing went on, this one left my whistle unsharpened. It’s a pleasure to see superheroes… sitting around you! Dazzle as our heroes… talk about things that happened off-camera! Some interesting ideas are raised – when do a group of young prodigies become adults, and how does this transition occur for teenagers whose powers place them under unthinkable scrutiny? But these questions only arise in the dialogue, not in the plot, of which there is essentially none; and the answers are not attempted. buffy the vampire slayer tread this ground to dust, but I’m optimistic that this team will reveal more up their sleeves…eventually. Lots of original astro city creators have been rounded up for this project, with more new work promised. I’m happy to wait until then.
Rating: 📯📯 (2/5)
Screenwriter: Kurt Busiek. Artists: Brent Anderson, Alex Sinclair. Covers: Alex Ross, Erik Larsen, Marcelo Costa, Leandro Fernandez.
ALSO: HULK CLASSIC, UNICORN KILLERS and BATMAN’S A GAMER NOW, I’M GUESSING
I wouldn’t be surprised if World class morphs into the next big thing – a football-centric high school drama, it tackles teenage angst and issues. I don’t have the same expectations for FaZe x Batman, a bizarre DC series that pairs Batman with guys from an actual pro gaming crew; the fact of this book’s existence is far more interesting than anything in it. DC Fans Probably Better Pick Up Shadow War: Alpha, crossing Deathstroke with Batman and Robin. There are two exciting new fantasy titles this week at Scout: cities of magic is a kind of the Lord of the Rings meets The Warriors; and By the horns is a beautiful paperback with an inspired creature design. I am also delighted to Hulk: Grand Designa new story told in a beautiful Golden Age art and storytelling style.