From a new Wolverine comic to the new volume of 'Die,' here are EW's comic picks this month.
The new month is bringing with it a load new comics, many of which feature characters who live very strange lives. Hal Jordan has been Green Lantern for more than half a century, and yet somehow his life only gets weirder. Thomas Cord, the super-spy at the heart of Dark Horse’s new series Bang!, has lived multiple lives — how else to explain how a 30-year-old mercenary has memories of fights from the ’60s? The characters of Die, meanwhile, have spent so much time inside a game that it’s hard to tell what matters more: their adult lives in the real world, or the characters they inhabit in this game.
Below, check out EW’s recommendations for five comics to check out this February.
Die Volume 2: Split the Party (Image)
Kieron Gillen (writer), Stephanie Hans (artist)
Die was one of EW’s favorite comics of 2019 for the way it mashed up the fun fantasy of Dungeons & Dragons with the horrific trapped-in-a-game premise of the Robin Williams Jumanji movie. At first it seemed like the main characters were being held hostage by an old friend who lived in the game for years, but the ending of the first arc blew that premise wide open. Volume 2 explores what happens now that the different party members have very different ideas about how to proceed. Every time you think you have a handle on what kind of story Die is, the rules change again.
Die Volume 2: Split the Party hits stores Feb. 5.
The Green Lantern: Season Two #1 (DC Comics)
Grant Morrison (writer), Liam Sharp (artist)
Iconic comic writer Grant Morrison has recently spent time in TV writers’ rooms, which explains the seasonal structure he’s applying to his Green Lantern comic with Liam Sharp. The first 12 issues, or “season,” of The Green Lantern built up to an alternate-reality adventure with the Blackstars, and now Hal Jordan is ready for his next adventures. The issues will have an episodic format, mostly based around single stories, and the first will pit Hal against a new generation of Guardians of the Universe.
“It’s a little bit like PC Principal from South Park, where suddenly everything’s changed at the top, Morrison told EW in November. “These are new Guardians with very different ideas of what’s right and wrong. Instead of Hal butting heads with these geriatric space dudes that he always had problems with, where he was the young cocky guy and they were the old heads, suddenly we have Young Guardians. It’s also having a little bit of fun with this ‘ok boomer’ thing.”
The Green Lantern Season Two #1 hits stores Feb. 12.
Bang! #1 (Dark Horse)
Matt Kindt (writer), Wilfredo Torres (artist)
It’s long been a fun game to play with the James Bond movies: Are all these actors supposed to be the same guy, or is “James Bond” simply a code name passed on to successive MI-6 agents? This new comic takes the latter theory and runs with it. The opening pages introduce us to super-spy Thomas Cord, who strongly resembles the characters we associate with the spy genre: older, male, white, complete with a cavalier attitude toward women he’s just met. That very attitude soon gets him killed, and the following pages introduce us, once more, to super-spy Thomas Cord — except this version is a 30-year-old black man. Thomas Cord’s only hope for understanding his lineage and his role in the struggle between MI-X and the organization known as Golden Maze (whose members believe reality is a simulation and the world must be destroyed to access true reality) is the mysterious science-fiction writer Philip Verve, whose novels might just have the answers to everything.
Matt Kindt has demonstrated his skill at trippy genre storytelling in past work like Ether and Mind MGMT, while Wilfredo Torres’ dynamic art is perfectly suited for both spy action and meta-fictive revelations. Together they seem more than capable of following through on this series’ fascinating premises.
Bang! #1 hits stores Feb. 19.
Plunge #1 (DC/Hill House Comics)
Joe Hill (writer), Stuart Immonen (artist)
Joe Hill’s line of DC horror comics (appropriately named Hill House Comics) has been impressive so far, but the best might still be on the way. Plunge is the second book in the line written by Hill himself (after Basketful of Heads), and its premise is a tantalizing evocation of classic John Carpenter movies like The Thing: A highly advanced research vessel that went missing in the ’80s suddenly appears 40 years later, sending a distress signal.
“There’s oil on board with unusual properties. At the center of this ring island, sunk in shallow waters, is what appears to be the ruins of a prehistoric civilization,” Hill teased to EW last year. “Most upsetting of all is when the men who were on the research vessel emerge from the island’s caves. Their eyes have all been eaten away, they haven’t aged a day, and they’re capable of performing unfathomable mathematical feats. There’s something terribly wrong with them. And then the storm closes in.”
If that’s not enough to pique your interest, Plunge is illustrated by Stuart Immonen — widely acclaimed as one of the best living comic artists. Whatever horrors that await these characters in the Arctic Circle are going to look incredible.
Plunge #1 hits stores Feb. 19.
Wolverine #1 (Marvel)
Benjamin Percy (writer), Adam Kubert (artist)
Marvel’s X-Men revamp continues apace. In case any readers of last year’s House of X/Powers of X reboot were disappointed by the relative lack of Wolverine in that maxi-series, the fiery mutant is about to return with his own solo comic. Benjamin Percy has already been writing Logan as part of the black-ops X-Force book, but now the writer of Marvel’s experimental podcast Wolverine: The Lost Trail will get to write a comic that focuses on a unique situation for the character. With a mutant utopia built on Krakoa, what’s left for Logan to be so angry and violent about?
Wolverine #1 hits stores Feb. 19.